RELEASED HALLOWEEN DAY!!
NIGHT’S TEMPLAR BY JOEY W. HILL
(Book XIII of the Vampire Queen series /
BDSM paranormal romance / Male-male)
Blurb: Lord Uthe, a member of the Vampire Council, was a Templar Knight centuries ago. Even up to the present day, he has attempted to honor the spirit of the Rule, despite the volatile and highly sexual nature of the vampire world. Yet now he’s caught the attention of the Fae Lord Keldwyn, liaison between the Council and Fae Court. Keldwyn challenges Uthe’s emotional isolation and dominant nature. When a quest from Uthe’s past requires Keldwyn’s help to protect both their worlds, Uthe will have to decide whether the Fae male is a gift from God to be cherished and trusted, or a curse that will make Uthe fail the Order he promised to serve all his life.
“What does subjugated to your will mean, Lord Keldwyn?” Uthe demanded. “I have a goal to accomplish. It does me no good to go to your world if that mission will be hampered by your demands.”
“I will not get in the way of that, never fear. Until your task in the Fae world is done, you will lie with me when I desire it.”
For a moment, Uthe thought he’d misheard him. The request was so banal, at odds with the complexity that he normally associated with Keldwyn’s motives. He blinked. “Your price for being my tour guide is that I be your whore?”
“I will not be paying for your services, my lord. Your payment to me, for my sponsorship, is your body.” Keldwyn swept his gaze over it, lingering on the columns of Uthe’s thighs, the way the cotton shirt stretched over his shoulders. Muscles tightened under his regard, and Uthe had to quell the desire to shift again. “You have compromised your chastity over the years to prove yourself vampire rather than Templar,” the Fae said. “And to protect your mission and secrets. You deemed them far more vital to your charge than your personal pride in keeping your vows.”
Uthe templed his fingers. He would treat this as a debate, like the many topics they’d dissected and argued over chess. That would calm the nerves jumping in his belly, as ridiculous as those experienced by a virgin bride on her wedding night.
“I wonder how many of your Templars preserved their ideals as faithfully as you have,” Keldwyn mused. “They had to do it only for a mortal life span, or until the Order ended. Whereas you have clung to them for centuries. Is it hubris, a fear of having no faith, or something else that makes you that stubborn?”
“To believe in nothing is no better than to believe in too much,” Uthe said between his teeth.
“A sentiment on coffee mugs and T-shirts. It is cliché and old, unoriginal.”
“Just as you putting a sexual price on your patronage is.”
“Careful,” Keldwyn said. Uthe felt that thrum of energy again as the Fae Lord’s gaze flashed with heat. “I will have your oath on bended knee that you offer yourself to me willingly. If you do not, your mission cannot proceed.”
Uthe met the onyx and moonstone gaze. “You weary me,” he said. “Whatever it is you hope to gain with your torment, Lord Keldwyn, I wish you well of it. If it is my body you desire, it is yours. It is merely future ashes and dust.”
Keldwyn straightened in the chair, uncrossing his ankles. His elegant hands dangled loosely on the end of either chair arm as he looked pointedly at the floor between his braced feet. It drew Uthe’s gaze to the columns of his thighs, the spread of his legs making it impossible not to note the impressive evidence of his virility under the molded fabric. He forced his gaze upward, but refused to look at Keldwyn’s face to see if he’d noticed him looking.
“Your oath,” Keldwyn repeated. “I am waiting, Lord Uthe. Unless you have decided your quest is not as important as your virtue.”
“Perhaps your revulsion for sharing your blood with a vampire is only matched by my distaste for sharing your bed.”
“If that was the case, you would not be aroused now.”
Uthe bared his fangs in a dangerous smile. He’d hung his sword on the back of the chair. Rising, he drew the blade from the scabbard in one swift movement, a whisper of menace. Let the bastard think he might try to skewer him, regardless of the consequences.
Keldwyn did not move, though Uthe had the satisfaction of seeing the sensual mouth thin, the eyes rivet on him in that cool, watchful way that suggested he might be close to inciting the Fae’s temper. He liked the idea too much. There was more at stake here than a pissing match, and he was channeling desire into aggression to deny his need. He ignored the faint tremor in his hands, the tightness in his chest as he teetered on the precipice of doing the unthinkable.
Planting the tip of the blade in a groove of the oak flooring, he dropped to one knee.
“Speak your oath, and I will repeat it in good faith, my lord,” he said, a growl. “You have my promise to adhere to it, unless it countermands God’s will.”
“I have noticed you still speak like a Templar, vampire. After all these decades.”
“In this modern world, promises are broken for convenience or comfort. I will not use casual words to speak a true oath.”
“Very well.” Keldwyn stood, moving the chair back and putting his hand on the pommel, curling his fingers over Uthe’s. His touch was cool, his palm smooth against Uthe’s knuckles. “Swear to be bound to me, offering your body willingly to my desires and demands, no reservations, until your quest is done. In God’s name.”
“I think God has little to do with this,” Uthe said, but he repeated it, his gaze lifting to meet the Fae’s. “I swear myself bound to you, the Fae Lord Keldwyn, liaison of the Unseelie and Seelie Courts, liaison for the Vampire Council. I will offer my body willingly to your desires and demands, until my quest is done.”
“With no reservations,” Keldwyn prompted. “You will not hold your mind apart from me, Lord Uthe. I will not consider the oath served if you lie like a board while I fuck you.” He slid a curled hand along Uthe’s cheek, so Uthe felt the rough edges of the ring resting above Keldwyn’s knuckle. “Say it.”
“With no reservations,” Uthe said, hearing the harsh rasp of his voice, a reaction to Keldwyn speaking his intentions so baldly. His hand was clenched on the pommel, and Keldwyn’s, still upon his, would feel it. “I swear.”
Keldwyn removed his hand, giving him a speculative look. “Access to our world must mean a great deal to you, Lord Uthe. I did not expect to win your agreement so easily.”
“Accomplishing my quest is all that matters. The rest does not.”
“Clever. You imply my demands do not matter, that they are as nothing to you. I am glad you are so unaffected. Because I require a demonstration of your oath, right now.”
HAVEN’T READ ANY OF JOEY’S VAMPIRE QUEEN SERIES? This is a great time to start. Joey did mention this is the 13th book, right? You have plenty to read! Since Keldwyn and Uthe’s story is pretty deeply entrenched in the culture of her vampires, she wouldn’t recommend reading it first.
However, you don’t have to read ALL of the twelve preceding books to enjoy it; you just need more familiarity with the Vampire Queen’s world. According to her, Beloved Vampire (Book 4) is a standalone and a GREAT gateway book into the series with the sexy Lord Mason. Or you can read the first two in the series, Vampire Queen’s Servant and Mark of the Vampire Queen, because Lady Lyssa and Jacob started it all.
Excerpts and blurbs for the whole series are here. Each book comes with a recommendation on whether it can be read as a standalone or which books should be read as prequels for it.
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