Author Charlie Richards
Now Available at eXtasy Books!
For a Dragon's Persuasion
Highland Dragons: Book Seven
Two men. One wants to be seen as a man. One sees what others have missed.
Perth has worked under Kaiser, the black dragon caste's best spy, for decades. While he respects the man's ability to gather information, Perth doesn't share his mentor's love of sharing his body with his sources to get it. When visiting strange clans, that leaves Perth with plenty of time to wander. Stopping at the stable, he finds his attention arrested by the young stable hand, Aodhan. While the male is nineteen summers, he's still slender, gangly, and growing into his body. As a dragon, Perth doesn't care about all that. He is attracted to the human's smell and finds himself returning often, appreciating Aodhan's quick wit and shy smiles. When Perth is framed and forced to flee, he persuades Aodhan to join him. On the run, Perth must reveal that he is a dragon. Will his young human have enough faith to accept that he is still the male he has come to know?
Excerpt - For a Dragon's Persuasion
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Feeling restless after finishing his evening meal, Perth headed out of his room. He strode down the hall to the first floor, deciding to see how his mare fared. His mount could be a real shite when she didn’t care for a human, and he’d noted the way she’d pinned her ears at the man who’d led her into the stable the day before.
Perth had taken time each day for a couple of moons to bond with her. While there had been days he’d wanted to cuss her out and eat her, now he appreciated the time he’d spent with her. His mount would come when she was called and no longer feared him when in dragon form. It was damn convenient to be able to land next to her, change into his human form, then mount and ride away without issue.
Reaching the stable, Perth heard a man speaking, so he paused and listened.
“Groom the warrior’s mare,” the man ordered. “Just watch yerself. She’s a mean beast.”
“Aye, Sir,” a young male voice replied. “I’ll be careful.”
“See that ye are,” the older man stated gruffly. “Gettin’ hurt because she kicked ye willna be reason for ye to shirk ye’re duties,” he continued, his tone cold. “When ye’re done with that, clean the stalls before goin’ to get yer evenin’ meal.”
“Aye, Sir,” the other male responded.
He must be a stable boy, Perth decided. He found himself liking the soft tones of the young male’s voice. Hearing the scuff of booted feet on hay and wood, Perth took a couple of steps backward. He placed his body in the shadows and watched as the big man who’d led his horse into the stable the day before strode past him.
After watching the man disappear into the shadows, Perth stepped forward and swept his gaze over the interior of the stable. He didn’t see anyone, but he heard the young male’s soft voice crooning to an animal. It only took a second to realize the man spoke to his mare.
“Doona pay any attention to Master Doohan,” the young man murmured. “None of the horses like him much. I doona know why he’s still the stable master. He gets kicked all the time.”
As Perth listened to the human speak he headed into the barn on silent footfalls. Reaching the stall where his mare was tied, he couldn’t resist being impressed. It wasn’t just by the fact that his horse stood quietly for his brushing, either.
The kilted male stood with his back to Perth. His torso gleamed in the torchlight, sweat accentuating his muscles. While he wore the traditional green and black kilt of the MacDuffan’s clan, he had skipped the tunic, showing off the damp lines of his back. His reddish brown hair hung to his shoulders, matching the smattering of hair on his toned limbs.
Based on the height of Perth’s mare, he realized the young man stood a little shorter than Perth’s own height. A slight breeze wafted through the place, carrying the smell of horse to Perth. Along with that he caught hints of leather, manure, and a light masculine scent that caused Perth’s cock to swell in his sheath, making his leather leggings somewhat uncomfortable.
Well, damn! This young human is an asda!
Unable to help his interest, Perth leaned against the wooden, chest-high wall and rested his forearms on it. He watched the man run a brush over the mare’s light brown coat in slow rhythmic movements. The motion caused lean muscle to ripple under the human’s flesh.
Perth decided the skinny male would grow into an impressive amount of muscle. In a few years, he’d be a hell of a male. Even now, the young man had a certain allure.
Just then, the male turned and noticed him. He started, which caused the mare to shift restlessly. The human’s instincts instantly had him settling a hand on the horse’s neck, giving her his attention, and murmuring, “Easy, girl.”
Smiling, Perth waited until his mare had settled, then rumbled, “I apologize. I did nay mean to startle you.”
“I, uh, I just doona normally see anyone in the stable this late unannounced unless—” The young male paused, an uneasy look crossing his features. He glanced around swiftly, as if expecting to see others as he asked, “Did ye need yer mare saddled?”
“Nay,” Perth responded. “My girl is a wee bit temperamental. I saw the way she eyed your stable master.” He couldn’t help smiling broadly as he finished, “She just doesn’t like new places. I wanted to make certain she hadn’t injured anyone…or herself.”
“All the horses kick at Master Doohan, so I didna think anythin’ of it.”
As soon as the words were out of his mouth, the young man paled. He snapped his mouth closed as he clapped his hand over his lips. His eyes were wide as he darted his gaze around the place.
Perth chuckled softly, mirth filling him. The young human had wit. He liked that…a lot.