Heartless (Tales of Goldstone Wood)

By Anne Elisabeth Stengl

Princess Una of Parumvir has come of age and should quickly be married. She desires of a good-looking and captivating prince, but if the 1st suitor arrives, she reveals him stodgy and dull. Prince Aethelbald from the mysterious land of Farthest shore has traveled some distance to end up his love and in addition to convey hushed warnings of risk. A dragon is rumored to be imminent Parumvir. Una, smitten as an alternative with a extra speeding prince, refuses Aethelbald's provide and ignores his warnings. quickly the Dragon King himself is in Parumvir, and Una, in giving her middle away unwisely, unearths herself in grave threat. purely these brave adequate to danger every thing have a wish of struggling with off this advancing evil.

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You’re a dragon-eaten idiot. ” “No, I’m now not. ” He paused, then extra, “Well, definite, possibly i'm. yet that’s inappropriate. i've been Leonard the Jester for a superb 5 years now, yet my genuine identify is Lionheart, and i'm – ” “Prince of Southlands. ” She subsidized up till she hit the some distance wall. “A most likely tale. ” “You don’t think me? ” “No. ” He set his jaw, puffing out an offended breath. “I recognize. You’re used to the sight of me scrubbing your flooring and home windows. now not a really princely posture, eh? So what needs to I do to end up myself? reduce my arm and convey you the way blue my blood is? ” “You may well clarify both why you're mendacity to me now or why you lied to me prior. that may make a superb starting. ” He got rid of his bell-covered hat and rubbed his hand via his hair in order that it stood up like tufts of grass. “That’s just a little a story,” he stated and indicated the ground. “Will you take a seat? ” “I won't. ” “This may well take time. ” “Then you’d larger start sooner than I lose what’s left of my curiosity. ” His eyes narrowed and his arms gripped his jester hat as if he wish to pull it in . “I’ll try and preserve it short. i'm the crown prince of Southlands – ” “We coated that. ” “Shush! allow me communicate. ” however it took him a number of moments of contemplating his phrases earlier than he may possibly start back. ultimately he spoke in a low voice with out Una, nonetheless pulling at his hat. “It got here from nowhere. I consider the day, the precise second, I observed the fireplace drop from the sky. We’d had no caution. that's . . . good, how will you be warned opposed to anything like that? after all you listen tales of dragons, yet you by no means count on you’ll see one. They belong to the traditional heritage of Southlands, again prior to we traded with the Continent, again ahead of we knew greater than to worship and revere such monsters. 1000s of years in the past. “But it got here one high quality spring day, dropped from the sky like a blazing meteor. very quickly it laid waste to the encompassing geographical region, set fireplace to the barracks that housed my father’s shield, trapped my mom and dad and eighteen different nobles contained in the Eldest’s condominium, retaining them for ransom to their very own humans. The Dragon demanded or not it's introduced a first-rate red meat cow each day and fast obedience to no matter what different orders it could provide. ” The jester-prince shuddered on the reminiscence. “It crawled in regards to the fortress grounds, destroying the gardens, burning the partitions. I don’t know the way many of us it killed with its poison breath on my own. The air used to be thick, extra putrid than you could think. ” A reminiscence got here to Una as she listened. A reminiscence, she knew now not from the place. She observed an excellent citadel and a ruined backyard, and a sky heavy with smoke and fumes. “Where have been you on the time? ” she requested in a whisper. “I had long gone out driving with a chum that day and was once no longer on the fort while the Dragon descended. We’d ridden all of the option to the Swan Bridge at the a ways south finish of my father’s grounds, yet we observed the hearth fall from there and rode again as speedy as shall we. once we approached, my buddy was once terrified by means of the sounds and scents and begged me to experience again to her father’s property along with her instead of face that fireside – ” “Her?

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