by Jennifer Anne Davis
While traveling to Fren, Allyssa and Odar and hijacked by a ruthless assassin who divulges a stunning secret that changes everything.
Trying to come to terms with this newfound revelation, Allyssa is taken to Russek and delivered into the hands of a malicious and twisted royal family. She finds herself an unwilling pawn in a risky political game that will either end with her death or the annihilation of her beloved kingdom. Unsure of where the lies end and the truth begins, she must survive the brutal family and escape the fortified castle, all the while coming to grips with her feelings for Odar.
In a kingdom filled with darkness, Allyssa enters a game where one wrong move means death, secrets hide around each corner, and it will take every ounce of cunning she has to survive.
On the exterior, Kerdan appeared every bit as bloodthirsty as the king. However, he was a good man on the inside who would one day be a great leader. He wore masks—just like she did. Just like Odar did. “I understand your concern. But it’s not necessary.”
“You’re wrong. We’re a means to an end. Puppets in this performance.”
“If that’s what it takes to get us out of Russek and stop the war, then so be it.”
“Sometimes, you’re too quick to act and reckless.”
Allyssa stiffened. She hadn’t made the bargain with Kerdan without thinking it through. She wasn’t a fool. “You don’t have to participate in the plan. Go back to Shelene and play the doting fiancé.”
He ignored her outburst, as if he hadn’t heard a word of it. “And you’re loyal beyond belief. You’d walk through fire for those you love.”
“Your point?” she snapped. Once they married, would all their conversations be so heated and exhausting?
He reached up, cupping her cheek. “Both Prince Kerdan and Soma know I care for you. What if they use that against us? All either one has to do is put a knife to your throat, and I’m powerless.”
Allyssa understood his fear—she had it too. There wasn’t anything she wouldn’t do for Odar, her parents, or her kingdom. That was how love worked. She knew her heart couldn’t stay locked in a cage, shielded from everything. “It’s not like you can stop loving me just to protect me,” she whispered. “Love doesn’t work that way.” He closed his eyes. “Odar?” she asked, wondering what he was thinking. He wasn’t . . . afraid . . . to love her, was he?
About Book One:
Sixteen-year-old Allyssa appears to be the ideal princess of Emperion—she’s beautiful, elegant, and refined. She spends her days locked in a suffocating cage, otherwise known as the royal court. But at night, Allyssa uses her secret persona—that of a vigilante—to hunt down criminals and help her people firsthand.
Unfortunately, her nightly escapades will have to wait because the citizens of Emperion may need saving from something much bigger than common criminals. War is encroaching on their kingdom and in order to protect her people, Allyssa may have to sacrifice her heart. Forced to entertain an alliance through marriage with a handsome prince from a neighboring kingdom, she finds herself feeling even more stifled than before. To make matters worse, the prince has stuck his nosy squire, Jarvik, to watch her every move.
Jarvik is infuriating, bossy and unfortunately, the only person she can turn to when she unveils a heinous plot. Together, the unlikely pair will have to work together to stop an enemy that everyone thought was long gone, one with the power to destroy her family and the people of Emperion. Now the cage Allyssa so longed to break free from might just be the one thing she has to fight to keep intact. In order to save her kingdom, she will have to sacrifice her freedom, her heart, and maybe even her life.
Jennifer Anne Davis is the award-winning author of the bestselling TRUE REIGN series. After graduating from the University of San Diego with a degree in English and a teaching credential, she married her high school sweetheart. Jennifer is currently a full-time writer and mother of three highly energetic children. Her days are spent living in imaginary worlds and fueling her own kids’ creativity.