The Fiery Crown by Jeffe Kennedy

 The Fiery Crown

The Fiery Crown by Jeffe Kennedy (Forgotten Empires #2)
English | 2020 |Romance, Fantasy| ePUB | 4.7 MB

Jeffe Kennedy is an award-winning author whose works include novels, non-fiction, poetry, and short fiction. She has been a Ucross Foundation Fellow, received the Wyoming Arts Council Fellowship for Poetry, and was awarded a Frank Nelson Doubleday Memorial Award.

A desperate alliance. A struggle for survival. And a marriage of convenience with an epic twist of fate come together in Jeffe Kennedy’s The Fiery Crown.
Queen Euthalia has reigned over her island kingdom of Calanthe with determination, grace, and her magical, undying orchid ring. After she defied an empire to wed Conrí, the former Crown Prince of Oriel—a man of disgraced origins with vengeance in his heart—Lia expected the wizard’s prophecy to come true: Claim the hand that wears the ring and the empire falls. But Lia’s dangerous bid to save her realm doesn’t lead to immediate victory. Instead, destiny hurls her and Conrí towards a future neither could predict…

Con has never healed after the death of his family and destruction of his kingdom—he’s been carefully plotting his revenge against his greatest enemy, Emperor Anure, waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike. When Lia’s spies gather intelligence suggesting that Anure is planning an attack against Calanthe, Con faces an agonizing choice: Can he sacrifice Lia and all she holds dear to destroy the empire? Or does his true loyalty exist in the arms of his beguiling, passionate wife—’til death do they part?

We had to deploy our few strengths with strategic care, and being trapped on an island while the Imperial Toad scoured us off it with superior force wouldn’t allow for that. Not only wasn’t I closer to destroying Anure and taking my final revenge, I’d put myself and my forces in an even more tenuous position than before. I’d followed Ambrose’s prophecy, and taken the tower at Keiost.

Take the Tower of the Sun,

Claim the hand that wears the Abiding Ring,

And the empire falls.

Claiming the hand that wears the Abiding Ring? I only wish it had been as simple as conquering an impregnable ancient city. Instead I’d had to find a way to convince Queen Euthalia of Calanthe to marry me. Against all probability, I’d succeeded. We were duly wed, though saying I’d claimed anything about Lia would be a stretch, and I sure didn’t see the empire falling anytime soon. The reverse seemed far more likely.

Doing nothing while my enemy mustered a crushing attack was driving me out of my mind.

“Lia’s spies can maybe tell her how much vurgsten Anure has, yes,” I finally replied to the wizard’s expectant silence. “She might find out exactly how many ships and troops he can send against us, how well fortified his citadel is, and we’ll know nothing more than we do now. We’ll be no closer to defeating Anure. I thought claiming the hand with the Abiding Ring would lead to the empire’s fall.” I leveled an accusing glare on him.

“You claimed Her Highness’s hand in marriage all right, but the wooing doesn’t stop there,” Ambrose replied with mild reproof. “You can’t order about a queen like you can your soldiers.”

“Don’t I know it,” I muttered. Since Ambrose had destroyed what little peace I’d found, I turned and strode down the long gallery. The wizard glided alongside me, making no sound though my bootsteps echoed on the polished marble of Lia’s pretty palace. Ambrose could move silently as a cat when he wished, which was how he’d managed to sneak up on me. No one else could. I’d learned early on in the mines of Vurgmun to duck the ready lash of the guards, a habit that had stuck—and served me well in the years of battle since.

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