SynopsisIssaldra Kai is the youngest prince of Ceylonia and a son of both the ice wizards and the fire mages. All his life, he's been held up to the standards set by his older siblings, yet remains powerless long after he should have become a Guardian.
When he meets Zen Jia, the son of the Nordjarimm of one of the last remaining tribes of Zendir, Kai has no idea that he's meant to be the warrior's mate, but the attraction between them is undeniable. Yet both are too young and their fathers refuse the claim, forcing a deal with Jia that means he can only claim Kai once they've both grown up and proven themselves worthy of each other.
In an effort to stay with his mate, Jia joins the Furia, the Aedalden's personal army, and is assigned to Kai's protection detail. For the next eight years, unable to explain what happened, Jia is tortured by the call to mate while Kai's anger over the rejection fuels an unusual friendship.
Only when Kai becomes the target of an enemy threat can Jia prove himself worthy -- but they have to survive first.
ExcerptZen Jia was seventeen years old and ready to kill someone. His father, as the Nordjarimm of their tribe, had been invited to attend the coming-of-age ceremony for Ceylonia’s youngest prince, and Jia had been dragged along with him.
He was bored to tears, bearing the flag of their tribe upon his father’s ceremonial spear and trying to interject some enthusiasm into his part in various conversations. They exchanged brief words with Issaldra Valek’s eldest children and even saw the youngest, Liana, dancing with an awkward Jocai at least twice her size, but there was no sight of Prince Kai, the kid they’d supposedly come to see.
How was he supposed to do his duty and offer the prince his congratulations if the kid didn’t even show up to his own party?
Eventually, he found a sliding glass door between two Ceylonian flags and discovered that it led onto a broad balcony overlooking the flanks of Mount Saenae and the city below. Shutting the door behind him, he leaned back against it to breathe a sigh as the stress of playing the dutiful son eased from his shoulders.
Moving toward the balustrade, intending to lean against it for a better view of Erion’s rooftops, he stopped dead mid-way when he realised he’d finally found Prince Kai.
He was a slender little thing, barely five and a half feet tall to Jia’s six. His clothing was a shock of white in the night sky, trimmed with blue and silver embroidery, and his blonde hair was a halo that reflected the glow from the Great Hall as it blew in the wind. His white cloak billowed and flapped against his legs, and he reached up to tuck short strands of gold behind his ear.
The kid’s back was to Jia — and he was balanced precariously on the balustrade, ready to jump!