Legacy excerpt #3

August 1, 2020

In anticipation of the release in October 2020, I wanted to offer a little bit-sized taste of what's to come. "Legacy" is book #2 in Saga of the Bold People, a follow up to my bestselling "Leopold." Mastrodai, Leopold's alien mate, is given his own point of view in this book. I decided the prologue would reveal certain scenes from "Leopold" but from Mastrodai's viewpoint. There are five significant scenes I touched on in the prologue and five months to go before release. So here's the third little taste.

 

Enjoy!

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BLURB:

What does a former assassin do when he’s not out there… well… assassinating? Saving his species from extinction, of course.

 

At least, that’s what Leopold wants to do with every molecule in his body. But the task won’t be fast or easy, and he can’t do it alone. Enter Mastrodai—a mrrog prince who has absolutely no desire to rule, much to his father’s exasperation. He craves the ability to prove his worth as a mate and to somehow atone for his actions that led to Leopold’s torture at the hands of an enemy. Making humans official would be a good start.

 

But politics rule no matter what the species, and Mastrodai has to maneuver carefully and risk what he has built to give his mate what he deserves. And when he realizes both he and Leopold have deeper feelings for Alex, one of Mastrodai’s human slave women, he knows his future is out among the stars with his humans, not planet-bound with his kin.

 

Unfortunately, before they can set their plan into motion, Leopold receives a vision that sends him reeling and questioning everything he knows about himself. A vision he must investigate, back to where he began—Lex, the backwater planet where he spent his early years, and where he swore never to return.

 

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MASTRODAI

 

“Leopold!” What a joy it was to say his name. To know he’d finally heard me speak. Even as my joy was marred by the knowledge that one of my reckless guards had wounded him, I strode forward, my heart pounding. Now. Finally.

 

He braced his hands on his knees, giving me a rather fine view of his ass. I put my comm to my mouth and ordered spotlights. Light shot down from the sky, and Leopold jolted before turning and scanning his surroundings. He was disheveled, his clothes and hair stained by the grotesque trash he’d used to escape me. I never wanted to set foot on Kvasr again.

 

With a grim expression, he finally looked at me, sweeping his gaze over my body. I felt it like a touch, and it was all I could do not to pounce and take him to the ground. Blast this human. Just surrender.

 

I tilted my head, and he returned his gaze to my face. I didn’t mind that he’d lingered over my body. And now, this close, I smelled his desire. It was faint. He was clearly fighting it.

 

“You cannot run anymore,” I said carefully in Terran. Alex had taught me just enough to make short sentences.

 

He appeared shocked, his stony expression shifting for a moment. When he said nothing, only stared, I lifted my hand and curled my fingers. He had to obey me now. He had to know there was no other choice. I would dominate him, and then I would be generous. He simply had to learn his place.

 

“Make it easy, Leopold. Come here.”

 

For a moment, a precious moment, I thought I had him. Then his face tightened, and he glared, bracing his body.

 

“I never do anything the easy way,” he said in Terran.

 

Stars and planets. I’d wondered about the sound of his voice. It was perfect. Deep and powerful, a little rough, and filled with authority, attitude, and stubbornness. Void, it was going to be exhilarating to dominate him. His submission was going to be the most beautiful thing in the universe. No wonder he reminded me of Gregorai’s poems. I’d often wondered who the mysterious beloved could be. Now I knew. No doubt Gregorai had been entranced by a human, just as I was now.

 

I swallowed hard, keeping my own expression blank. “I noticed,” I said, switching to Veruvian, since it was uncommon to come across anyone who didn’t have a basic understanding of it. It was imperative that all species in the three galaxies could communicate with each other.

 

“You should have waited on the slave ship. It would have been safer for you.”

 

I couldn’t stop myself from glaring at the guard on his knees. He was young and reckless, and I would dismiss him as soon as Leopold was secured.

 

“Safer?” Leopold scoffed, bringing my attention back to him. “Staying on that ship for the highest bidder? Suck space waste, mrrog. I’m not a thing to be bought.”

 

The sheer force of his will flamed my desire higher, and I teetered on the line of control. He was bold, fearless, full of viscous life. So beautiful.

 

“Perhaps not,” I said. “But you are mine.”

 

He glared and scowled at me. I waited for him to say other bitter and stubborn words. Instead, he stopped and glanced down at his feet as if confused. I waited, on edge, heart pounding. Was this it? Was this the moment?

 

Then he looked at me. His lips curled up but I’d hardly call it a smile. I narrowed my eyes, suspicious.

“I’m really not easy, mrrog. And I don’t think I’m done running.” Then he jumped slightly and locked his legs together, falling through a hole I hated myself for not noticing. I roared out orders, and even as Runrrai was about to dive after him, something exploded underground, halting pursuit that way.

I nearly screamed in pure frustration. He was going to pay for that. “Spread out! Find his blasted ship! Ground him!”

 

Not long afterward I had to watch with murderous rage as Leopold once again escaped into hyperspace. I stood on Kvasr, staring at the sky, teeth bared and growling, unable to find my control. No one said a word. No one approached me.

 

Then Wekladai showed either great courage or great stupidity and stepped to my side.

 

“What did you expect from a human as extraordinary as him?” he asked in Maggin. “His profession is to kill kenesurri. He would hardly invite domination by one.”

 

I snarled. He was right. Leopold was only doing what came naturally to him. But why was he so blind to his own desire and to the protection I could offer? He was at risk. His identity was exposed because of that deathworm’s dung, Terk. If I didn’t capture him soon, then someone else would, and I’d lose him forever.

 

Like Nandeely.

 

I covered my teeth and relaxed my muscles. I stopped growling. Wekladai eyed me. I lowered my gaze and stared into the distance, not seeing the sagging buildings and cracked roads. My Nandeely. Our child that never even took her first breath. My mate would be alive if I hadn’t claimed her. Was I making the same mistake with Leopold?

 

“My lord?”

 

“I hear you,” I said softly. “I hear you now. But it’s too late. I set this in motion, and I have to finish it. He’s in danger from the entire IG community. I have to protect him. I’m the only one in the entire galaxy that wants to. That can.”

 

Wekladai huffed a breath and nodded. “You won’t easily convince him of that.”

 

I grunted. “He still views me as the enemy.”

 

“Can you blame him?”

 

“No.” I shook my head, calmer but still determined. “Let’s go.”

 

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