He’ll do anything to save her. And then he’ll say goodbye…
Being framed for murder, captured, and tortured for weeks didn’t break Val. But seeing Alanna every day, knowing she didn’t love him as he loved her, surely would. So, he’ll do whatever is necessary to stop the king from executing her…then he’ll walk away. Forever.
Queen Alanna gave up everything—including her soul mate— to secure the treaty that would end the war. Now, her husband wants her dead and any chance she had for true happiness with Val is ruined.
The king’s new guards are arrayed against them, the threat of war looms large, and their enemy has the upper hand. When all is said and done, will Alanna choose to sacrifice her own happiness to save her kingdom? Or will she risk it all for a second chance at happily ever after with Val?
Val, book 2 in The Hawks series, is a sexy, steamy, adult fantasy romance full of swords, shifters (kind of), and tons of action. But fair warning: This book is intended only for readers who love slow burn romance, fast-paced adventure, soul mates and found family—and characters who curse when they fight for survival. If that’s you, happy reading.
Val turned around and walked away, his appetite gone. He was wrong about waiting one more day, or even one more minute. It was time to go.
A soft voice called his name, but he ignored it.
He let himself into his tent and stopped, letting his head fall forward and his wings drop. He didn’t even know what he was doing there. The neatly tied bedroll, the folded blankets, even the clothes on his back—none of them were his. He had nothing. No possessions to pack, no home to return to. Nothing to hold him.
He could go, now, immediately. Take whatever scraps of his pride were left and set himself free.
He spun, ready to leave, and walked straight into Alanna, knocking her off her feet.
She had been so silent, or perhaps he’d been so lost in his misery that he hadn’t heard her come into the tent behind him. He hadn’t realized she was there, but now she gasped, flailing as she fell, and he reached out to catch her slim arms and pull her back to safety, into his chest.
He held her there, warm and alive against his body, her wide green eyes looking up into his, just for a second.
And then he leaped back, pulling his hands away in horror as if she’d burned him. And in some ways, she had.
They stood, staring at each other in silence as hurt flickered in her eyes. Well. What did she want from him?
She looked away for a moment, and then, seeming to gather herself, clasped her hands in front of her body and met his eyes. “Good morning.”
He sighed. She had put them right back to where they’d started. Polite and formal. Distant. He hated it.
He wanted to push past her and walk away, but he knew how the court had treated her for so long, how badly it had wounded her, and he couldn’t bring himself to do it.
He nodded his head formally. “Your Majesty.”
She rolled her shoulders back and lifted her chin, a spark of anger flickering in those luminous eyes. “Alanna.”
He had only ever called her Alanna once, and she had thrown it back in his face. He wasn’t going to make that mistake again.
“What do you want, Your Majesty?” he asked roughly.
Gods. She was so strong and proud, standing with her back straight and chin up. So beautiful. He wanted to unravel those infuriating braids and run his hands through her silky hair. He wanted to unlace her jerkin and pull her bare skin against his. He wanted to lean down and worship her with his mouth and never let her go.
He took a step back and folded his arms. “I’m not in the mood for games.”
“What are you in the mood for?”
Had any other woman said those words, they would have been intentionally seductive, and he couldn’t help the flood of images his imagination immediately supplied.
But not Alanna. She looked genuinely curious, one pale eyebrow lifted as she watched him, waiting patiently for his answer.
Gods. She had absolutely no idea what she did to him. And she never would.
He turned his back on her and walked further into the tent. “I’m in the mood for you to go away so that I can pack.”
He shrugged, refusing to look at her. They both knew that he had nothing to pack.
“Why are you packing?” she asked eventually.
“I’m leaving. Today.”
There was a moment’s silence and then a soft footfall. A gentle hand landed on his arm and his muscles quivered with the conflicting torture of how desperately he wanted her to touch him, and the need to throw her off before he did something they both regretted.
“Okay.” She sounded so sad and resigned that he almost turned to look at her. He wished that she would argue, ask him to stay. It wouldn’t change anything, but it would have been nice to think she cared for him, just a little.
But she didn’t. He gritted his teeth and kept his face away.
She sighed and asked softly, “Where are we going?”
He didn’t understand why she had asked the question. But he definitely understood that she was going to stay with the squad that could protect her. And that he was going far away. By himself.
Jennie Lynn Roberts believes that every strong, kickass heroine should have control of her own story, a swoony hero to support her at every turn, and a guaranteed happily ever after. Because that doesn’t always happen in real life, she began creating her own worlds that work just the way they should. And she hasn’t looked back since.
Jennie would rather be writing than doing anything else—except for spending time with her gorgeous family, of course. But when she isn’t building vibrant new worlds, she can be found nattering with friends, baking up a storm, or strolling in the woods around her home in England.
If you want to talk books, romance, movies, reluctant heroes, or just about anything else with Jennie, feel free to contact her atwww.jennielynnroberts.com. But be prepared to settle in for a long chat if you bring up shifters, vampires, Star Wars, or The Princess Bride….
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