Hunted by the crown, Prince Edward of Cassia struggles to adjust to his new reality. His consort and lover Percy is pregnant with their child. Their friend, Abelard Reynard, a former captain in the Royal Guard, never strays far from Percy or Edward, determined to keep them both safe. Edward, no stranger to hard work, is still at a loss when the hardship of a life on the run catches up with them. Percy’s pregnancy progresses at a rapid rate, and the palace guards are always a step behind. It takes Reynard’s skills from his secretive military career, an unexpected ally from within the Cassian Dynasty, and the love between Percy and Edward to keep the three of them safe as Percy’s time draws near.
Keeping themselves safe and together may have been their goal originally, but as the trio travels across Cassia, through the garbage-strewn alleys of abandoned hamlets, to the opulence of the nobility’s drawing rooms, the effects of their journey leave behind a lasting impression.
I found this series by accident one day, and I was completely drawn into the storyline and couldn’t put books 1 & 2 down. When I found out that book 3 was soon to be released, I couldn’t wait to start it.
With that being said, this series is a true series. You can’t fully understand everything that is going on in this book without having read the other books in the series.
The further that we get into Edward and Percy’s story, the more that I just can’t seem to get enough of them. Sure, there’s plenty of smutty scenes that add to the story, but there is more to it than that. The twists and turns that happened in the story kept me on the edge of my seat and left me wanting for more.
While this isn’t the last book in the series, we do finally get to find out about the pregnancy, which of course is not without the drama attached.
Hawthorne is a new to me author with this series, yet I can’t wait to see what else we get from Hawthorne in the future. But even more than that, I can’t wait until we get to the rest of this series!
I would say if you’re looking for a new mpreg series to read, then give this one a shot!
Percy stayed behind Edward, one hand clutched in his master’s jacket. They were in the market, Reynard a few steps away, arguing with a shady looking man about accommodations for the night. They had left the derelict micro-city behind, and were now days further east. Ten days in total since they had escaped the capital, and they were all feeling it. They were coming up on a portion of the country that was fully wild and untamed forests, sprinkled with small hamlets and tiny towns, and large, sprawling country estates much like Hartgrove. Here the estates were vineyards and orchards, all dormant in the winter months, surrounded by dense old wood forests.
The town they were in was near an estate called Estiary, which Percy thought odd. Edward grew grim, mouth tight, and Reynard looked like he was ready to murder someone, but they needed to stop for supplies, and this town was the last one before a long stretch of wilderness. Percy could tell from the way both men were reacting to the name of the town that something was very wrong, and Percy stayed in Edward’s shadow, head down, doing his best to be unobtrusive and forgettable.
“The inn is your best bet, my lord,” sniveled the odd man Reynard was speaking to, “the one next to the pub. The Discontent Noble is the pub’s name. Can’t miss it.”
The odd man, thin and whip-like with a narrow countenance and gray overtones to everything from hair to skin, pointed down the length of the market. “The bar and pub are closed until noon, then open for lunch and evening business.”
“Thank you,” Reynard said, dropping a golden half-piece coin in the man’s hand before nodding and walking back towards where he and Edward were waiting next to a wall. The odd man watched them as Reynard walked away, biting the coin before grinning and ducking out of sight in the crowd.
“He was a bit …off,” Edward murmured to the captain once he was in earshot. “Will he cause us trouble?”
“Probably, but we haven’t got much in the way of options.” Reynard jerked his head down the market, and Percy and Edward followed him, Percy between both men. Edward had his arm around his shoulders, and Reynard walked close enough to touch him, their arms occasionally brushing. He felt dwarfed and sheltered between them, and he was thankful he had yet to feel smothered. Reynard continued speaking, voice low, head tilted down to make it harder for them to be overheard. “If we had secure computer access or untraceable cells, this would be easier, but I asked around. This whole village is owned by the local nobleman, and there’s only one inn. No apartments for rent or lease, no vacant homes we can take over without being noticed. The estate controls the power, the internet, even the local cell tower, so I believe everything is monitored, nothing secure.”
Reynard frowned, glaring back down the length of the market. “So unless you want to rough it in the forest, we have little choice but to stay at the inn.”
Percy shivered, thinking back to how uncomfortable it had been a few nights back, sleeping at a rest stop off the highway between towns. He may fit comfortably in the rear of the SUV, but Edward and Reynard were too large to find any decent rest in the vehicle.
“Should we risk staying at a public establishment?” Edward asked, tone curt, arm about Percy’s shoulder tightening. “What if someone sees us and reports us to the authorities?”
“Just having you two walk around in public is too much of a risk, if you’re going to be asking that,” Reynard snapped, “but since every time I suggest you stay behind with Percy, you claim it’s safer if we stay together…”
“Because it is!” Edward hissed, stopping in the middle of the market, glaring over Percy’s head at Reynard, who stopped as well. Percy bit his lip and looked nervously between the two big men, wondering if he should worry about ducking. “I may know how to shoot a gun, and throw a punch, but I’m no defense for my mate if we’re cornered by the royal guards, and you know it! So yes, we need to stay together, because you are his best chance at surviving this, I’ll not have us separated again!”
Reynard’s brows went up at that declaration, dark blue eyes calming, and his gaze searching as he looked at the prince. Percy slid his hand to rest on Edward’s side, feeling how hard his lover was breathing, how tense he was, so taut he trembled. Edward was beyond stressed.
Reynard stepped so close to Edward that Percy was pressed between them, his back to Edward’s chest, Reynard firm and strong along his front. Percy shivered, not entirely certain he disliked where he was, but Edward was ready to snap, so he held very still and waited.
“My prince,” Reynard said softly, looking Edward in the eye, forcing Percy to tip his head back at his proximity, “If you trust me to keep your mate safe, even above yourself, then please, please trust that I can care for you both, and that I know what I’m doing. If I say it’s safe for us to separate, then trust me. If I say we need to stay together, then we will. In Court, Palace, and country estate, you know best and are master. Yet out here, in the wilds of the common lands, follow my lead. Do you think you can do that?”
Percy couldn’t see Edward’s face, but after a moment he felt Edward nod, his tense frame slowly relaxing. Edward put his hands on Percy’s shoulders, and turned him from Reynard, pressing his face to his chest. Reynard was still at Percy’s back, the heat from both men in the cold winter air comforting and stimulating at the same time. Percy snuggled into Edward, relieved that the tension seemed to be dissipating for now.
Reynard put a hand to the back of Percy’s head, tousling his long hair affectionately before stepping away, leaving his back exposed to the cold elements. Edward hugged him for a moment more, but then tugged him to follow after the captain as he cut through the meager crowd in the square.
The sign soon appeared for The Discontent Noble, and Percy giggled at the picture of a finely dressed man sitting on a crooked stool, his beer stein spilling, and a cranky expression on his features. Reynard pointed to a nearby recess in a wall, and Edward guided Percy there, turning them away from any curious eyes of those passing by on the street while Reynard entered the pub.
Percy kissed Edward’s jaw, doing it again until Edward gave him a small smile and hugged him close.