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Title: Dark Heat
Series: Dark Kings #0.4, Dark World Bundles #0.4
Published by: St. Martin's Press
Release Date: December 13, 2013
The Dark Kings are sworn to defend an ancient legacy of dragon magic. But their fiercest challenge lies in the modern world, where a woman’s love conquers all. These are their stories.
Fueled by ancient magic—and enflamed by human desire—the Dragon King known as Hal can transform himself at will into one of the legendary winged creatures he is sworn to protect. But one thing he can never do is fall in love…with a mortal woman.
The dark immortal warriors were never meant to experience human desire. But when Guy, a member of an ancient order of shape-shifting warriors, meets Elena—a mere mortal whose beauty and blind ambition shakes him to his core—all bets are off…
For centuries, the Dragon Kings have hidden their shapeshifting powers from the world. But when a mortal enemy threatens to expose them, the warrior Banan must leave his secret lair in the Highlands to risk his life for the dragons within—and resist the temptations of human love.
Banan has been waiting for centuries for someone like Jane. Guy knew it was love at first sight with Elena. Can two Dragon Kings commit to two immortal women for eternity? Or does fate have something else in store?
5 Blue Ribbons! “Combining four delectable stories in one book, bestselling author Donna Grant packs her latest novel, DARK HEAT, with suspense, action, incredible world building, passion, sigh worthy romance and eternal love.” – Romance Junkies
TOP PICK! 4.5 Stars! “The author has created a fantastic and mesmerizing fantasy world with intriguing twists, surprises and unique elements that keeps the reader turning the pages to the very end.” – Night Owl Romance Reviews
Grade A! “I like how each story gets consecutively darker.” – The Good, The Bad, and The Unread
4 Stars! “Three of Grant’s beloved Dark King stories are finally in print, offering devoted fans and new readers alike the chance to rediscover these deftly plotted and gripping tales of forbidden passion and timeless love. Grant’s world of immortal dragons is richly detailed and blends beautifully with the familiar realities of her human characters. Each story is loaded with subtle emotions, sizzling chemistry and some provocative thoughts on the real choices her characters are forced to make as they choose their loves for eternity.” – RT Book Reviews
4 Hearts! “I loved that Donna put all these stories together into one book so that there was no waiting to read the next story. I am very much looking forward to the first full length book in the Dragon Kings series.” – Books-n-Kiss Review
“Donna is amazing. I couldn’t put it down. I love the world she created with these stories.” – A Creative Mind
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Hal shut and locked the doors to the distillery for the day before he turned and looked out over the land. Snow blanketed everything and the light the crescent moon cast upon the ground made it look almost as if it were glowing.
The need to lose himself in the land in the forest sometimes was overwhelming, as it was this night. Other times he could ignore the call, but not tonight.
Hal didn’t bother to tell the others where he was going. He simply walked down the steps and into the night. The weather didn’t faze him.
His boots crunched in the thick snow, but he never noticed. His gaze was trained on the forest ahead. Every one of them answered to something, and for Hal it was the forest.
Always had been.
Always would be.
Once he was in the trees, he took a deep breath and lifted his face to the sky. Snow landed on his lashes and rain dripping from the limbs above pelted his face.
It was glorious.
Hal smiled and spread his arms wide. He touched his chest, through his jacket and sweater, to the tattoo beneath.
A person could get lost in the glens of the Highlands, and there were thousands of glens. Which made it a perfect place for Hal and the others like him to stay hidden.
It had been a long time since he’d allowed his other self to show, his dragon self. And for some reason, this night he desperately yearned to spread his wings and fly.
To feel the wind around him as he soared through the sky.
He still remembered flying low over the trees, the leaves brushing against his underside as the sun beat on him. He hadn’t needed to hide then. For once upon a time, he had been able to call to his brethren and listened to their roars fill the forest.
So very long ago he had lived a completely different life. Back before the humans betrayed them, before a war that changed everything.
A sound off to Hal’s right had him turning his head in that direction. He dropped his arms as his eyes fastened on a large, fast-moving animal loping through the trees.
Hal let his coat drop from his arms as he sprinted toward the animal. As he neared, he realized it was a dog—a very large dog. And the only person near Dreagan land who had such a dog was Dan Hunter.
With more frustration than Hal wanted to concede, he came to a halt. He had been able to take flight, but now he had to chase a dog. For several moments he watched the Great Dane running, his tongue lolling out the side of his mouth.
There had been a few times in Hal’s life where he’d felt that free, been that free. Those times were the barest of memories now.
When a person was as old as Hal, time blurred.
It was so easy to get lost in his memories, of what had once been, and what he had once been. But to allow himself to get absorbed in such recollections was not wise.
He pulled himself back from the brink and gave a loud, short whistle, which pulled Duke up short. The Great Dane turned his head to Hal and issued a deep, booming bark in greeting.
“Come here, lad,” Hal called.
Immediately, the dog ran to him, his tail wagging.
Hal rubbed the dog’s massive head. “It’s no’ like Dan to allow you to run like this. Nor is it like you to run off. What’s the problem, lad?”
Duke jerked against the hold Hal had on his collar. Hal narrowed his eyes. He’d learned very early in life to listen carefully when animals tried to speak. They might not be speaking your language, but they were talking. It was obvious Duke was trying to tell him something.
“Show me,” Hal said, and released the collar.
Duke took off at a run and Hal was quick to follow. Dreagan land extended far as the eye could see, and Dan’s cottage was the closest anyone lived to Dreagan.
It was because Dan rarely rented the property and didn’t cause any problems that Hal and the others hadn’t made a point of getting rid of him.
Hal easily kept pace with the Great Dane as they traversed over the land. When they crested the last hill that overlooked Dan’s cottage, Duke stopped and whined.
Dan’s Corsa could be seen by the light of the moon and despite the heavy snowfall. Thankfully, the rain had tapered off, but the snow made it difficult to see where Dan was.
Duke butted Hal’s hand with his head before he took off down the slope to the cottage. Hal had memorized the lay of the land centuries ago and knew where the boulders lay hidden in the snow.
He leapt down the slope and landed in thick snow. Duke caught up with him, and they both ran the rest of the way down the side of the mountain.
Hal rushed to the front door, but found it locked and all the lights out. When Hal turned to look for Duke, he found the Great Dane standing beside the car.
That’s when Hal noticed there was someone inside. In three strides he was beside the car. He tapped on the window, but the figure didn’t move.
Duke barked. Hal opened the door to find the most beautiful face he’d ever seen. Hair as dark as chocolate silk hung over her shoulder and next to her pale skin.
The same dark brows arched over large eyes. Her oval face was streaked with tears. Thick lashes lay against her cheeks. Lips, full and luscious, were slightly parted and tinged a pale blue.