Sword of the Guardian The Legend of Ithyria Brought to you byE-Books from Bold Strokes Books, Inc. fepipvawoobig.cfr. Sword of the Guardian The Legend of Ithyria Brought to you by E-Books from Bold Strokes Books, Inc. fepipvawoobig.cfr. A shocking assassination creates an unconventional bond between a princess and her guardian in a kingdom filled with political intrigue, danger and.
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Sword of the Guardian [Legends of Ithyria] pdf - Merry Shannon a. Phantoms the guardians metal beak was flooded by them as a few times. He is in his second. But what Shasta doesn't know is that her new guardian has a very SKU e: File Formats epub, pdf, prc. Sword Of The Guardian Legends Of Ithyria king james holy bible - av - i preface to pdf version preface to pdf version of the king james holy bible.
The obvious thing to do is hire an acrobat to be her bodyguard.
It's perfect -- the acrobat is secretly a girl, so Shasta's virtue won't be at risk. Captain Vaughn: I'm teaching the lad -- ha ha -- to be a soldier. I'm one of the only people who knows the boy -- ha -- is rea Moderately ridiculous but generally entertaining fantasy lesbian romance. I'm one of the only people who knows the boy -- ha -- is really a girl Oh, and the girl's sisters.
And the nurse. And the chambermaid I mean 'he'. Talon: Sounds good to me! I'm cool with putting my sisters up for collateral -- if I fail even though I have no bodyguard-specific training , they'll be beaten or killed. I think the princess is a total brat, but I totally don't mind that I only get about one day off per year. Even if everyone else thinks it's wildly inappropriate and her virtue's at risk. Bria: I'm Talon's sister.
I've never been whipped because I have valuable singing talent 79 , unless it's convenient to the story, in which case I have been whipped before When she raids a merchant vessel bound for Jamaica, her only objective is to obtain the map that will lead her to a legendary treasure. But she hadn't bargained on taking Violet, the merchant's young widow, on board her ship as a prisoner. In spite of her childlike appearance, Violet has a dark side of her own that Ann finds both infuriating and endearing.
As Branded Ann sails in search of treasure, her task is made more difficult by a stowaway child, an increasingly rebellious crew, and the treacherous seas of the Devil's Triangle; to make matters worse, she finds herself falling for her not-so-innocent but altogether charming captive.
But will Violet be able to overcome the demons of her past and accept Ann's love? And will they survive the treasure hunt that has already claimed the lives of so many before them? By Alyssa Linn Palmer.
Falling for a big city lawyer is not part of the plan. Pulled in two different directions, will the city kitty and country mouse be able to make it work? By Julie Tizard. Airline Captain Kerri Sullivan has a perfect life. Only one thing is missing—a woman to share it with. She's had plenty of women on the road to success, but she's never met "the one. When Kerri and Janine are crewmembers on a flight to Hawaii, an unexpected kiss leads to smoldering attraction.
But Jeanine is hiding a dark secret from her past, one that makes falling in love impossible. By Lisa Moreau. Falling in love with the enemy has never felt so good for two women on opposite sides of a family feud. Claire Fontenot jilted her high school boyfriend, Kurt Savoy, at the altar, igniting a storm between the two families that culminated in fiercely competing hot sauce businesses.
By Melissa Brayden. Hannah Shephard likes her life, her job, and her perfectly cozy apartment around the corner from her shop. Plus, Hannah has bigger problems to focus on. When world famous romance novelist Parker Bristow accepts her request to come in for a signing, Hannah might finally be able to drum up some much-needed attention and save the shop.
A real romance is off the table.
Parker is flashy, sought after, and Hannah is just, well, Hannah. But for Parker, it seems like Hannah might be a safe place to fall. The question is, what kind of falling are they doing? This is such a wonderful, special book. The nobility has become corrupt and greedy, waging small wars between one another and killing thousands of innocents in the process. Not only do they prey upon their own people, they do nothing to stop the barbarian invaders from the Dangar Empire who constantly terrorize the northern provinces.
Of all Ithyrians, the Outlanders face some of the worst persecution. Nor do I fail to empathize with their plight. But what do you expect me to do? I expect—the kingdom expects—that you will act accordingly. Remove the undeserving from power. Reinforce our defenses along the northern border. Save the children of Ithyria from lives of starvation and abuse.
The royal guard follows its general, not its King! I am well aware that my own son inspired more respect and obedience from the Ithyrian nobility than I do. The court tolerates me as a placeholder, awaiting the day when a descendant of Rane will take the throne.
One of the twelve Honored Mothers of Ithyria, Qiturah was a direct representative of the Goddess, and courtesy dictated that he show proper respect. I grieve for our kingdom, Honored Mother, of course I do. But I cannot save Ithyria if she will not allow me to rule her.
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He lacked confidence and authority, which ran strong in the blood of Rane. But such traits were not exclusive to the royal family. Soltran had simply never cultivated them, instead developing the habit of placing blame on others for his own failures. It was difficult to challenge his behavior without violating protocol.
Your Majesty, how many more must die before you take action? You have already lost your son. Will you stand idly by and let your enemies take your daughter as well?
For all his failures as a ruler, Soltran was a devoted father who adored his children. Shasta is all I have left. Ulrike, brother-god to Ithyris, was the antithesis of everything the Goddess stood for, and though his name was often used in casual swearing it was more powerful than most people knew.
But Soltran seemed careless of this fact. With her there still lies a chance for a strong king on the throne, someone who can cleanse the provincial governments and restore order. Any one of them could have sent that hooded devil. General Anjen is too busy trying to track down the assassin to provide sufficient protection for the Princess.
She needs constant security. In fact, someone must attend her every moment of the day and night. I want a guard at her bedside. The King was getting sidetracked from the original subject. She has to be, to be able to perform all those stunts. As a woman, she could be trusted alone with the Princess. And as a man, properly trained as a soldier, she could be an effective deterrent to any assassin. Yet again the King was avoiding real action, instead making a token gesture.
Not to mention that the very idea was rather bizarre. So long as the acrobat is obedient, she and her sisters will be rewarded with positions in the royal household. The girls can serve as ladies-inwaiting to the Princess. Shasta will like having attendants her own age. Of course, if the acrobat fails in her duties, her sisters will pay the price. An added incentive. Thank you for your guidance in this matter. Ithyria has not lost all its hope after all. If you will excuse me, there are many preparations to be made.
This was not at all the result she had desired, but she could not push the matter further now.
She inclined her head, her long golden earrings jingling. Ithyris, help me, she prayed silently. This is going to be more difficult than I thought. She had been so sure of her mission in Ardrenn, convinced she must persuade King Soltran to control the nobility. It was confusing, but the enigmatic Ithyris often gave commands that seemed to make little sense.
Only later did hindsight reveal Her wisdom. Qiturah had never known the Goddess to act without reason. Ithyria was Her land, and had been so since the Great Division. This land, Ithyria, was divided into provinces, with one of the Twelve governing a Great Temple in each. The Goddess appointed the house of Rane, a strong bloodline of charisma and wisdom, to rule sovereign over them all.
As centuries went by, the kingdom of Ithyria remained in the hands of the Goddess, despite countless attempts by Ulrike and his followers to reclaim the lands taken from him. Yet the war between brother and sister was far from over, and the Daughters of Ithyris shared a sense of foreboding. Ulrike was stirring again. Qiturah felt certain the recent civil unrest was his doing, with the death of Queen Talia a catalyst.
Qiturah feared that now, almost a millennium since Ithyris had established independence for Her people, their kingdom would soon face another deadly spiritual war. Her own role in the coming conflict was a mystery as yet, but she had a feeling it would be somehow significant. The Goddess would reveal this in Her own time. Like all priestesses, Qiturah trusted Her wisdom implicitly and would wait patiently for Her guidance.
She entered the infirmary, passing through a cluster of curious servants and nobles gathered outside. The acrobat had serious injuries and would not be well enough to leave for at least three quarter-moons. Whoever this girl was, the Goddess had important plans for her as well.
Qiturah let out a breath of apprehension and knelt beside the cot. Touching her fingers to her forehead, she began to pray. She closed her book and set it on the windowsill. Standing, she carefully tucked a blue feather into the waist of her skirts. Talon wondered at the feather for the hundredth time. Shasta had that thing with her daily, at every lesson, lying beside her books or tucked into her belt. Sometimes she would pull it out and twirl it thoughtfully.
Talon had overheard other young members of the court tease the Princess about it from time to time, but Shasta never explained its significance. Bria found this amusing. You may be my escort.
Talon grinned at each of her sisters in turn. A high vaulted ceiling painted with murals of the Goddess and Her various consorts soared above an enormous central altar.
This was carved from pure white marble in the likeness of Ithyris Herself, and it seemed the Goddess smiled down benevolently upon all who entered Her temple. Talon had never put much faith in religion of any sort, but she had to admit that there was a peace and serenity about this place that felt almost spiritual.
Lyris always seemed particularly affected by the atmosphere. Talon was not surprised.
Her gentle, introspective sister was certainly the type to be drawn to the Goddess of the Spirit. It was a breezy, sunny summer morning in the Fourthmoon, and although no one was meant to open their eyes during prayers, Talon could not help herself. Privately she reasoned that if anyone saw this grave disrespect to the Goddess, they were guilty of the same transgression so would be unlikely to call attention to it.
Talon found the morning prayer service exceedingly tedious. She studied the murals ringing the ceiling, which were the only things within her range of vision while her head was tipped back. They were not very interesting, cheerful white-robed nymphs bearing wreaths of flowers and baskets of fruit. Shaking her head to free herself, she was startled to hear a small cry erupt from the Princess, interrupting the rhythmic chant of the high priestess.
Carried by a gust of wind, it floated through the temple chamber in a gentle spiral over the heads of the worshippers and drifted out the open doors. Before Talon could act, Shasta darted into the aisle and bolted after it. The other worshippers were alarmed, and worse still, the high priestess ceased in midchant. But Talon had no time to apologize for the disruption; her orders were to keep the Princess in sight at all times.
Once outside the temple, she stared around trying to determine where her young charge had gone. A flicker of color caught her attention, and she saw the little blue feather fluttering precariously in the branches of a nearby tree.
It was at least twenty paces above the ground, snagged between two leaves, and likely to be dislodged at any moment. There was no sign of Shasta. Talon spun at a cry from one of the onlookers, and her mouth dropped open.
The Princess was making her way gingerly along the edge of the temple rooftop. While Talon was debating whether she should climb after her or hover below to catch her in case she fell, Nurse came storming up, her aged face red with indignation. Get down here, now, or it will be the belt for you. The onlookers gave a collective gasp.
Talon ducked into position to catch her should she fall. In fact, Shasta regained her balance and reached for the feather again. Goddess save me, child, come down from there! But for some reason she was foolishly determined to get it back, even if it meant falling off the temple roof. Puzzled, Talon called up to her. All the onlookers fastened their eyes on her, and Shasta herself seemed surprised, peering down at Talon through her veil.
Talon cleared her throat. May I borrow your horse? With a deep breath, Talon took them. Time to see if all that training with Captain Vaughn in the riding ring has rubbed off. They were still over two hundred paces from the tree when the horse reached full gallop. With concentration honed by a lifetime of practice, she blocked everything from her mind but the steady rocking of the saddle beneath her and focused on the tiny spot of blue suspended from the tree branch ahead.
Her feet came up over her head, and just as she passed above the feather, she snatched it from the leaves, giving a half twist as her legs came down on the other side. Another chorus of gasps rose from the crowd as she lifted her other arm to offer the blue feather to the veiled girl balancing gingerly above her.
The Princess took it from her fingers and held it for a moment before tucking it into her belt. Talon let go of the edge of the roof and dropped to the ground, then held out her arms to the Princess.
Talon followed behind, the onlookers erupting into gleeful whispers as she passed by. She had to shake her head. The palace was sure to be abuzz with this escapade for the next quarter-moon, at least.
She ought to have been proud of herself, but she felt only a deep sense of relief. Her sisters fell into step with her and Bria elbowed her in the ribs. I had to improvise. Talon the Marvel. Somebody even wrote a song about the way you rescued Princess Shasta from that assassin. Now they can add another verse. More than two full moons had passed since her debut as a national hero, and she and her sisters now lived in a palace, dined on fine food, and spent their days with the Crown Princess of Ithyria.
In trying to save her sister, she had unintentionally made a new life for all of them. It was still hard to believe their good fortune. Bria shrugged. She cast a glance at the Princess, who, even beneath her veil, seemed entirely unconcerned.
There was a timid knock at the door, and Nurse grunted in satisfaction. When he caught sight of Nurse, his face contorted in fear.
Nonetheless, he stepped into the conservatory and closed the door behind him, looking like he would rather be anywhere but in that room at that moment. Nurse beckoned. It looked something like a low chair, but with a curved seat and no back.
Sword of the Guardian
Talon had been wondering what its purpose was, but she knew as soon as the boy kneeled in front of it and leaned forward so that his stomach was cradled in the curve. He gripped the high sides, and Nurse turned to glare sternly at Shasta. The punishment has been set at fifteen strokes of the strap. Talon had heard of such things, children of noble birth whose parents would punish a surrogate for their misdeeds, as they could not punish the children themselves.
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Yet, standing next to her, the Princess was perfectly still, apparently unconcerned. The veil over her face made it hard to read her expression. How could Shasta just stand there, uncaring, while someone else suffered such pain on her behalf? How could she be so cold? Disgusted, she balled her hands into fists at her sides.
Selfish, cruel, callous…all nobles were the same. The boy was sobbing unabashedly now, and he made no effort to rise from the chair even with the punishment complete. Bria stared with her mouth hanging open, and Lyris had tears running down her face, but the Princess did not say a word. Nurse looked down at the boy. Perhaps you will think twice about trying such a dangerous stunt again. She had no desire to be anywhere near her selfcentered charge at the moment.
But she had no choice, so with one last sympathetic glance at the whipping boy, she reluctantly strode after the Princess. Her Royal Highness insisted on bathing every night, heedless of the work this involved.
Maids lugged countless buckets of hot water to fill the tub, and perfumed the bath with various soaps and oils. Afterward the same maids had to return to drain and clean the tub, releasing the bathwater into a pipe that ran the length of the castle wall into an irrigation canal used to water the garden. Talon was astounded by this huge waste of water and expensive perfumes, but the Princess took such extravagance for granted. Eying the privy door with irritation, Talon used a hunk of bread to mop the beef juices on her plate.
During the nightly baths, she had a maid bring up a plate of food.
They had spent the afternoon in silence, Shasta reading contentedly in her usual spot by the window as if nothing out of the ordinary had happened while Talon buffed her boots by the fire. Dinner was an equally sullen affair.
Taking a sip of tea to wash down the bread, Talon set the mug down a little harder than necessary. The Princess was incredibly spoiled, she decided with a grunt. She was willing to bet that Shasta had never felt the pangs of hunger, never lain awake at night shivering because she was too cold to sleep.
She had probably never even bruised her royal little knee without the entire castle making an ordeal out of it. And, as Talon had learned today, the Princess had never experienced the consequences of her own actions. No one had ever laid a hand on her, of that Talon was certain. The arrogant brat had no concept of what pain was or how much she could cause to someone else just by being careless. And at her age! At sixteen, she was old enough to stay out of trouble, surely. Her unfortunate whipping boy should be out of a job by now, but apparently the Princess had not yet outgrown the disobedience that made him indispensable.
Talon wiped her mouth with a cloth napkin and tossed it onto the dinner tray, which she placed on a low table in the sitting room for the maids to clear.
Compelling her thoughts in a more relaxing direction, she retrieved her short sword from the wall beneath the window.
The weapon had been given to her by Captain Vaughn, the soldier appointed to train her in her bodyguard duties. The Captain was a good teacher whose daily lessons in swordplay, horseback riding, hand-to-hand combat, and battle strategy pushed Talon to her limits.
Vaughn was every inch the soldier, a hardened survivalist and warrior, yet with the bearing and manners of a well-bred gentleman. Talon had sensed his unease and a well-concealed resentment.
No doubt a captain of the royal guard had better things to do than play drill sergeant to a glorified servant girl.Talon was horrified to realize that it had never occurred to her to inspect behind the dressing screen as part of their daily ritual. Ithyria was Her land, and had been so since the Great Division. Shasta laughed again. How easy it was to forget that for Shasta, the palace was hardly safer than the streets of Ardrenn.
On the battlefields of Mondera, as Kade struggles to defend Ithyria from a dangerous new enemy, she's also brought face-to-face with her greatest personal temptation: Shasta gave her a light smack on the shoulder.
As she stepped from the outhouse, looking forward to her evening bath, a disturbance caught her attention. Bending one leg carefully, she took the cup from that foot so there were two in her hand.
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