Cover photo © PeriodImages.com
Cover design by Fiona Jayde Media
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-946271-26-6
Apple Books ISBN: 978-1-946271-25-9
The first adopted daughter of Immortals Stella and Darius, Diana has been raised as if she were one of the fabled Amazon princesses. Her mornings are spent training with Darius at the agōgē, her skills as a warrior matched only by a few of the Deminon army recruits. Her afternoons are spent with Stella as she learns the art of diplomacy and the importance of service to others.
Never does Diana wonder why her parents are so devoted to one another, or why they seem to speak of the past as if they lived in it.
The curious stares aimed in her direction by the agōgē’s doctor, Antony—even when she’s not in the circle of battle—has Diana on edge. Learning she has a much older adopted brother—one who seems to youthen as he ages—has her questioning her origins.
So the arrival of Augustus of Assyria seems fortuitous. Her father’s oldest friend is welcomed with open arms even as he is followed by a threat to the future of Deminon. With his intimate knowledge of her parents, perhaps he’ll have the answers Diana seeks. Or will the Roman senator’s revelation about her only complicate matters? For his attentions are far more intense than those of Antony—and far more arousing.
Stella leaned her head back until it rested on Darius’ shoulder, reveling in the sensations his hands were creating as they skimmed down the sides of her naked body. Only moments ago, they had been in the grip of ecstasy, their playful lovemaking leaving them both too hot to sleep.
Above, stars had just begun to appear in the growing twilight. Behind them, the door to her secret bedchamber and the uppermost room of the palace was left ajar, allowing the glow from a single candle to provide the only light they needed. Straight ahead and just beyond the reach of the light stood the funerary stele she had erected after Darius’ death. His ashes were buried there, a reminder that even an Immortal’s body could succumb to death. Thank the gods Marcus Ortelius had been the one to kill him, an Immortal who hadn’t yet died for the first time. An Immortal whose body now housed the Essences of both Darius and Marcus.
“We have not done this in a long time,” she murmured, shivering when his lips captured one of her ear lobes and suckled it.
“Because I fear some young warrior at the agōgē will be awake and watch you as he tugs on his cock,” Darius replied dryly.
Stella gave him a quelling glance. Although the agōgē was visible from this vantage, it was unlikely any of the young soldiers that boarded there could see them.
Stella inhaled when a shooting star streaked across the northern sky. “The gods are practicing their archery again,” she said in a voice filled with amusement.
Darius lifted his head, his gaze following the arc of fire from east to west. He suddenly let go of Stella and hurried to the edge of the mountaintop. A single puff of smoke was barely visible in the northwest sky.
“What is it?” Stella whispered as she joined him. A few dislodged pebbles tumbled down the side of the mountain, which had Darius wrapping an arm around her to pull her back.
“Smoke. A warning from the border guards. I must go.” He placed a kiss on her forehead. “Secure yourself in your chamber, and do not come out until one of your guards assures you it is safe.”
About to put voice to a protest, Stella eyes widened as she watched him disappear into her bedchamber. Even before she could follow, he was gone from the chamber.
A quick look assured her he had at least remembered to grab his chiton on his way out. The sight of the naked king would have even her handmaidens blushing.