What a Dragon Should Know

By: G.A.Aiken



“Only good things.” He smiled at her. “Now, are you going to thank me properly?”

“I said ‘thank you.’ That’s considered in some cultures as thanking you properly.”

“I was hoping for a little more than that.”

She studied him for a long moment before she nodded.

“All right.” She scooted down a bit on the bed, pulled her gown up high on her thighs, and relaxed back into the mattress. “If you could make it quick before the food gets here, that would be great.”

Gwenvael felt a small twitch beneath his eye. He often got something similar right on his eyelid but only when he had to deal with his father. Apparently a new one had developed that belonged only to Lady Dagmar. “That’s not what I meant.”

“I hope you’re not expecting me to get on my knees because I don’t think the healer—”

“No!” Good gods, this woman! “That’s not what I meant, either.”

“That’s always what men mean when they ask to be thanked properly.”

“Your world frightens me. I want us to be clear on that.” He leaned over and grabbed her waist, lifting her until her back again rested on the propped-up pillows.

“I’m unclear as to what you want, then.”

“A kiss,” he said, pulling her dress back down to her ankles. “A simple kiss.”

To Kate Duffy. You have always been brave enough to let me off the leash—even when you had no idea where I might be headed or what I might maul along the way—and for that I am truly grateful.

To Doug Lindquist. Although you are gone, your guidance, encouragement, and suggestions to “slow down, breathe, and stop panicking” still help me every time I sit down to write. You are very much missed, my friend, but you and your words are forever with me. Thank you, Doug—for everything.

Dear Reader:

As a former instigating, tattletale baby sister, I’ve been looking forward to writing the story of the instigating, tattletale younger brother of Fearghus the Destroyer and Briec the Mighty.

But I can’t say that it was easy writing Gwenvael the Handsome’s story because I knew he needed a heroine who could do much more than challenge him in the bedroom. To keep a more than two-hundred-year-old dragon entertained for another six hundred years when most of that dragon’s days were spent plotting and planning “shenanigans” and “hijinks,” I needed a heroine who absolutely lived for “shenanigans” and “hijinks.” And that heroine is Dagmar Reinholdt, The Beast of the Northlands.

And although it may not have been easy writing this book, it was fun. How could it not be, with two scheming troublemakers at the helm?

Also, even though my books can be read as stand-alones, in the world of dragon politics there are often quite a few players, so I want to suggest you read Fearghus’s book, Dragon Actually, and Briec’s story, About a Dragon, to get yourself up to speed on the Dragon Kin.

Now, after that brief aside, I invite you to enter the world of my Dragon Kin—where the dragons are much saner than the humans surrounding them could ever hope to be.

—G.A. Aiken

Chapter 1

It wasn’t the first time he’d run for his life. And it most likely would not be the last. In the past few decades, though, he’d mostly run from angry fathers who’d found him where they felt he should not be. Or he’d run from town guards—sent by angry fathers who’d found him where they felt he should not be.

But this day, Gwenvael ran from his own kin. Not that this was in any way new to him either, but it had been a while since he’d been forced to.

Also true was that he should have kept his mouth shut. Yet it had been a legitimate question. As always, though, his kin blew everything out of proportion and took out their misplaced rage on him.

Why did they just not admit they were jealous? For he was Gwenvael the Handsome. Third-born son and fourth-born offspring of the Dragon Queen, Former Captain of the Dragon Queen’s Northern Armies, and most-loved male throughout the Dark Plain regions, Gwenvael was always magnificent, magnanimous, and loving.