The Green Rose
by Stephanie Burkhart
On the continent of Gaia, evil is brewing. Turncoat wizard, Balthyser, kidnaps the kings of Dahaka and Tapin. He wants the green rose, a source of powerful magic.
Princess Sonia of Tapin is forced to hunt down the rose in exchange for her father's life. It's the ultimate betrayal of Gaia's peace, but she has no choice if she wants to save her father.
Prince Ivánstan of Dahaka accompanies her on the journey. Both face challenges and obstacles that test their strength of character during the hunt for the rose. Dare Sonia put her trust and faith in a man she hardly knows to secure Gaia's peace or will the continent's harmony be shattered forever?
Draco stood next to the bank of the brook on hind legs which were thick and stocky. The dragon was no taller than Ivánstan. His wings rested at his side. The green scales that covered his body glistened in the twilight. Upon seeing her, Draco's eyes widened and he moved his head, looking her over from head to toe. Sonia cradled the now sleeping Hiro in her arm against her breast. Heat radiated from the dragon's body.
Ivánstan glanced at Draco and chuckled. "He says you're pretty." "Thank you." She'd never been called pretty by a dragon before. Draco raised his right wing, exposing his claws upward.
"He wants you to put your hand in his. It's his way of greeting you." "I won't burn?"
"Nay. His scales usually negate the heat's effect for us."
Sonia steeled her courage. Seeing Draco so close, she understood why Ivánstan's bonding had been so challenging. She had to trust him when he said Draco wouldn't burn her.
There was that dirty word again -- trust. But how dirty was it? Why did Ivánstan consistently demand it of her? And why did she give it piece by piece?
Slowly, she offered her hand to the dragon. His scales possessed the consistency of slate, but she detected an inner hardness, reminding her of Taveran steel. His claws wrapped around her hand.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Stephanie Burkhart is a 911 dispatcher for LAPD. She was born and raised in Manchester, New Hampshire. She served 11 years in the US Army and currently calls Castaic, California her home. Stephanie was married in Denmark in 1991 and has two young sons. She adores chocolate, is addicted to coffee and enjoys early morning walks. She's also an assistant den leader for her son's Cub Scout den and is a Boy Scout mom. She writes paranormal, contemporary, and steampunk romance and has two children's books published with 4RV Publishing.
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Stephanie will be awarding $25 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.