"I hate you." Please touch me.
"You sicken me." Hold me closer.
"I want to be free of you." I can"t live without you.
The messed up part is he means everything he says.
The youngest prince of his clan, Seyn has been betrothed to the crown prince of another clan since birth. Everyone says he"s so lucky to marry one of the most respected, powerful men on the planet, but Seyn knows better.
He hates him with every fiber of his being. Ksar is a cold, uncaring, overbearing bastard who uses underhanded tactics to achieve his goals and who either ignores Seyn or criticizes everything about him. Seyn can"t stand him, and he"s willing to do anything to get out of the arranged marriage to a man he abhors.
But the line between feverish hatred and passion can be very thin, and it turns out that freedom isn"t as appealing as it once seemed.
Is it messed up to miss a man you loathe"
Is it sick to want his hands on you"
Seyn knows it"s insane. He knows he should stop going back.
But knowing something and doing it are two different things.Books in Series:Calluvia’s Royalty Series by Alessandra HazardBooks by Author:Alessandra Hazard Books
Everyone said that he was lucky.
To be betrothed to the heir to a throne, to the most politically influential man on the planet"Everyone said Seyn was lucky.
Seyn didn"t feel lucky. He hated that man more than anything.
* * *
When Seyn was a child, he loved bedtime stories about kings and queens, brave princes and princesses, and their exciting adventures. There would be nothing special about it"he couldn"t be the only child who liked such stories"but Seyn was a little special, after all. Seyn was a prince himself, and there was a story about him, too. It was his favorite.
"Very well, my love," the Queen said with fond exasperation, tucking a strand of silver hair behind her four-year-old son"s ear. "But this is the last time. And then you will sleep."
Seyn nodded, beaming at his mother and looking at her expectantly.
"Once upon a time," the Queen started in her soft voice. "There was a beautiful little prince. He was born two months early""
"To save another prince"s life!" Seyn interrupted excitedly. "I did it!"
"Yes, darling," the Queen said with a smile, leaning down to kiss his forehead. "You saved another prince"s life. And not just any prince"s"it was the life of a very special prince"the Crown Prince of the Second Grand Clan."
Seyn nodded. He was old enough to know that there were twelve royal families on Calluvia, and some princes were more important than the others.
"His name was Prince Ksar, and he was very ill," his mother said.
Seyn frowned, for the first time feeling curious enough about the mysterious illness to ask. "Ill""
"You"re probably too young to understand," his mother said with a slightly pinched expression on her face. "Prince Ksar"s bondmate had died from a very rare telepathic disease, and it made Ksar"s telepathy dangerously unstable. He needed another bondmate to stop hurting. But there were no other unbonded boys or girls of royal blood, so Ksar"s parents asked us to bring you to this world early so that you could be bonded to Prince Ksar."
"And I saved him!"
"You did," the Queen said with an affectionate smile. "And now you"re bonded to Prince Ksar and will marry him when you turn twenty-five. It"s a great honor and privilege, my darling." Probably feeling his uncertainty through the familial bond that they shared, she smiled at him and said, "Don"t worry, my love. He will cherish you and treat you well. You"re bonded for life. The bond between you and Ksar will make him predisposed to like you. That"s how the bond works."
Seyn stared at his mother with a frown. "But I"m not bonded to anyone, Mother."
Queen Janesh smiled and shook her head. "We bonded you to him right after your birth. You"re just young and your telepathy isn"t fully developed yet. I"m sure you"ll feel him soon."
Seyn nodded, accepting the explanation and figuring that his mother was right. As far as Seyn was concerned, his mother was always right.
But years passed, and gradually it became obvious that his mother had been wrong"or there was something wrong with him. He didn"t feel his bondmate at all, no matter how hard he concentrated.
By the time Seyn turned fourteen"the age people"s telepathic abilities fully developed"he was sure that there was something wrong with his bond. Other children his age were happily bonded, and the way they described their bonds was completely unfamiliar to him.
"It"s like having a best friend at the back of my mind," his older brother, Jamil, told him, his expression softening. Jamil and his bondmate were getting married in a few months, and they were nauseatingly sweet together. "It"s a special connection like no other." Jamil looked at him curiously, with green eyes that mirrored Seyn"s. "Why are you asking that, kid" Isn"t it the same for you""
Seyn made something up, successfully hiding his growing uneasiness and uncertainty. There was nothing but silence at the back of his mind. No friend, no bondmate, no special connection. Nothing. Even when he spent hours meditating, all he could feel was a vague connection that led somewhere, but his every attempt to communicate was met with silence.
He didn"t know what to do. He considered telling his parents, but he was too embarrassed. He didn"t want doctors and mind adepts poking at him"and declaring him defective.
So instead, Seyn decided to research the bond.
The amount of information was a little overwhelming, and most of it was boring as hell, but Seyn was able to find something that might explain why his bond was so weird.
The thing was, bonding was supposed to be easy and uncomplicated. It had been over four thousand years since Calluvians had started practicing childhood bonds. It had been supposedly scientifically proven that bonding children"s telepathic cores made their telepathy more stable. There had also been political reasons for introducing the Bonding Law, but Seyn found himself skimming the boring bits.