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The Bride of Angels. Book One

By Ann Davis All Rights Reserved ©

Drama / Fantasy

Blurb

Forced into an unwanted betrothal to a young prince, Princess Layla Naboroni is soon the target of an assassination attempt from a rival kingdom -- the first of many to come. In order to keep safe, she abandons her duty and flees across the sea with new comrades Storm Le'arge and Cylia Miriage. With war ensuing throughout the kingdoms, Layla finds herself becoming afflicted with a mysterious illness. She soon begins hearing voices in her mind and realizing there are countless secrets shrouding her birth. Perhaps, God has destined her a fate worse than she could ever imagine.

Prologue: The King's Daughter

“Please,” the queen sobbed, “Please, stay with me. Please!”

Clutching the babe tight, tears fell heavily from the sapphire eyes of the young queen. The night had come and gone and not a soul in the castle slept as the infant wailed in the arms of her mother.

“It has only gotten worse since her birth, My Queen.” 

A cold hand touched to the queen’s shoulder, but she refused to look up. The doctor’s eyes fell upon the screaming infant. The child was unworldly beautiful, resembling her mother in many aspects, but for the monstrous bruise upon her arm. It had been so small upon her birth, but only weeks later it had grown to cover her arm almost entirely.

The doctors were saying the princess would not last the night. The whole castle was in an uproar. The queen had pleaded with her husband over and over again, but he had not come to her side. Not even once.

The queen pulled her child closer to her and wept harder. "My daughter, my only child..."

“Shall I send once more for the king?” the doctor asked, neglecting the king’s previous dismissal of his wife’s agony. When the queen did not respond, he turned to the maid at her side and instructed her to find the king.

The maid hurried off down the long corridor and found him exactly where she knew he would be. As he had been all morning, she found him in the library -- the only place in the castle that the sound of screaming mother and babe could not be heard. The library was one of the largest areas of the already grand castle, nearly three times the size of the dining halls. 

The king was not reading, nor did he pretend to study the intricate murals that hung high upon the walls. He only stood with his eyes to the ceiling and his hands upon his head.

“Your Grace,” she called to him, but she was met with no response. “Your Grace, the queen has asked for your presence. The princess --”

“Leave,” he commanded.

“Your Grace?”

He turned to her then, fury burning wild in his eyes. “Now!" he bellowed. “Do not call upon me, the whole lot of you!”

Stunned by the absence of empathy for his daughter, the maid could only nod whilst faking her understanding. “Yes, Your Grace,” she stammered, shaking, and left him to be.

As the doors to the library shut once more, the king found a spot against the windowsill where he could see the clouds of dark grey peak just over the garden. It was quiet again, and he was grateful for this. The thunder would roll in, and the night would pass soon, and all that was well would be well again, just as it was before.

Come night fall, he would see that squalling child no more. That he counted on.

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