Autumn’s Bane by Yasmine Galenorn (The Wild Hunt #13)
English | 2020 | Romance, Paranormal | ePUB | 2.6 MB
New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly bestselling author Yasmine Galenorn writes urban fantasy and paranormal romance. She is the author of the Otherworld Series, the Fury Unbound Series, the Bewitching Bedlam Series, and over fifty other books.
Life isn’t easy when you bear the mark of the Silver Stag.
The Father of Dragons has returned to the world and all hell is breaking loose. A shadow dragon has let loose a group of vrykos—undead creatures who are cunning, hungry, and looking to feed on the living. In the midst of the chaos, Ember finds herself facing a major decision brought on by a twist in her status with the Queen of Dark Fae.
But when the shadow dragon drags her friend Viktor, the half-ogre, into the world of the dead, Ember must journey to the Underworld to rescue him. Will she be able to save Viktor before it’s too late? Or will she lose her own soul to the armies of the dead?
“On the contrary. I’m fascinated.” I finished my meal and crossed to the counter, where I poured myself a cup of coffee. Viktor was usually reticent about his family, so him opening up made me feel like he trusted me a little more. “Coffee?”
“Thanks, with cream.”
I handed him the mug and set the dish of creamers in front of him. “What about your grandmother? You said you miss her?”
“Oh, I do. Grandmother Anna used to call me her ‘big boy’ and she’d hold me on her lap. By the time I was four, I was the size of a ten-year-old human, but she never said anything bad about my size. My grandmother’s hair smelled like apples and hay, and she always had a cookie in her pocket for me.”
“How old were you when your parents split?”
“I was…oh…ten? Eleven? Somewhere around there. As it became apparent I wasn’t going to reach the expected size of an ogre male, my father started acting out against my mother. He blamed her and wanted nothing to do with me. The leader of the ogres ordered him to either cast me out into the wilderness, or for her and me to leave. My father told my mother she had to choose.
“I overheard that fight. It isn’t a pleasant memory,” he said, closing his eyes. “In the end, Mother chose me. She told my father to go to hell. The next day, we gathered our things, and my father relented enough to give us the supplies to last through the summer while my grandpa and I built a little cabin. We left the mountain and moved down into the Puyallup valley. Grandpa died of a heart attack five years later, but my grandmother and my mother kept the homestead going. Pierre came along a year or so later and he did wonders adding on to it.”
I pressed my lips together, thinking that all of us at the Wild Hunt had been through one form of hell or another. Well, maybe not Herne, and probably not Kipa, but we had all faced our demons as we grew up.
“I’m sorry it was so hard. Your mother has always supported you, hasn’t she?”
He nodded, his voice softening. “She’s never stopped being my cheerleader. She loves Sheila, and while we’ll never have children of our own—Sheila really doesn’t want to go through pregnancy—we thought we’d adopt. My mother likes the idea. You’ll meet her at the wedding, which will be on Imbolc. Sheila honors the goddess Brighid, though she’s not a priestess. So we thought it would be nice to get married then.”