Fated Betrayal(The Twisted Destiny Saga Book 2)(5)By: Franca Storm
“Having their princess return after so many years is a huge thing, Cora.”
Ever since they’d left the throne room and made their way to the royal gardens, they’d been besieged by curious glances and a flurry of hushed whispers as they’d walked by faeries, white witches, warlocks, and many other beings in the palace corridors.
There were whispers of excitement and joy:
The princess returns.
It is her, Cora, the White Realm Princess.
And then there were anxious whispers:
The Wolf King walks in the White Realm!
The princess is with a wolf!
When they had reached the gardens a few moments earlier, both of them had been floored by the absolute beauty before them. Ryan had never seen anything like it. The Dark Realm was nothing but death; there were no gardens. And Cora had only ever seen nature in the human realm. Here, in the royal gardens, things were completely different. It really was another world altogether. Shimmering silver, lilac, bright blue, and turquoise foliage surrounded either side of the glowing, white, pebble path that they walked along. The flowers were huge and their colors far more vibrant. And they moved as Ryan and Cora walked by. Cora had touched one that looked a lot like a rose and it had made a peaceful humming sound as her fingers had skimmed lightly across its petals. There was a powerful energy emanating from the gardens that they had both picked up on. A calming serenity.
“Have you seen anything like this before—in the Dark Realm?” Cora asked.
Ryan shook his head. “No, everything there is blood and death. Nothing like this. Where there are flowers here, there are thorns there. And where there are picturesque ponds and fountains here, there are pits of lava there.”
He saw her shudder at his words.
He wrapped his arm around her and drew her close. “I never want to take you there. You belong in the light, my love. And so does our child.”
“Wolves don’t belong in the Dark Realm, Ryan. They are not dark creatures.”
“You’ve only ever met wolves born in the human realm. Trust me when I tell you that the wolves in the Dark Realm are dark.”
She looked up at him as she said, “You were born in the Dark Realm and you’re not evil.”
Ryan looked away as he said, “I learned to control my darker side. But I’ve…done things, Cora. I’m no angel.”
“What? Like what?”
Before he could answer, they both stopped short at what they saw through a clearing up ahead.
A dozen faeries—male and female—were fooling around in a majestic waterfall that cascaded into a golden pool beneath. Their shimmering, silver wings fluttered rapidly as they enjoyed themselves, some swimming in the pool, some pleasuring one another under the waterfall and on the grass embankments, and others lying peacefully and looking up at the thousands of bright stars in the sky. They were all naked, their clothes discarded behind the waterfall.
Cora held her hand over Ryan’s eyes to shield his view of the naked women. “No looking.”
He chuckled and eased her hand down.
“Relax. You’re the only woman worth looking at, my love.”
As soon as he spoke, the faeries started in shock. All eyes turned to them and they focused on him. The women squealed and the men gasped. And in a flash of blinding silver light they were gone as though they’d never been there.
“Why did they leave?” Cora asked him sadly.
“Because of me.”
“They sensed dark energy.”
“Oh,” she murmured, frowning.
He could see she was upset that they’d reacted that way to him.
“Come,” she said suddenly, taking his hand and pulling him towards the waterfall.
He laughed as he let her pull him along. She released him and stopped right at the edge of the pool. He watched her shed her leather jacket, quickly followed by her tank top.
“What are you doing?”
“Going for a swim,” she said simply. “With my husband.”
I’m not gonna say “no” to that. He followed her lead. “Where’s my shy little wife gone all of a sudden?” he asked as he stripped quickly.
“I don’t know. I guess…here…I feel different.”
He nodded his understanding. “You always had to hide who you were before in the human realm.”