Venerably Daray | Jessamyn Kingley
Release Date: March 31st, 2022
Cover Artist: LJ Anderson of Mayhem Cover Creations
Heat Rating: 3 flames
Length: 95,441 words
Even with Fate’s blessing, there are no guarantees in life or love.
Skeleton Lord Brynnius Daray is happiest when he’s wielding his daggers or elbow deep in flour, baking some wondrous treat. As an elite assassin, Brynnius spends his days protecting the Council of Sorcery and Shifters, and his evenings are for family. The Darays are lively and dedicated, and Brynnius loves them fiercely. However, at night he is alone, and Brynnius yearns for his mate.
Having been recently resurrected, Samson is desperate to prove his worth as a fallen knight. The trouble is, Samson is part of a ground-breaking experiment—and the new spell is flawed. Or perhaps it is the man himself that has issues. While Samson struggles to understand his purpose, he learns that Brynnius is the other half of his soul.
Although Fate has brought them together, neither man is sure what the future holds. To figure it out, they must confront the past and reconcile their present. Just when Samson and Brynnius finally find common ground, the world intrudes. Nothing will ever be the same for the Darays.
Brynnius loved his job, and he had a wonderful family and a beautiful home, which he shared with the rest of the Darays. When he wasn’t fighting crime or combing through Council bills to aid Alaric in voting appropriately, Brynnius was baking. If there was a recipe for something sweet or delicious, the sentinel wanted to hunt for the ingredients.
Around him, the Darays and his larger extended family, known as D’Vaire, praised his baked treats, which gave Brynnius the confidence to continue to make them yummy things. It was fun to travel around the world to grab things unavailable within the Council, and Brynnius liked surprising everyone with novel treats.
Brynnius was pondering whether to make the blackcurrant tarts he’d recently found a recipe for when he pulled open the door to the resurrection room inside the shared training center that belonged to the fallen knights and sentinels.
The moment Brynnius crossed the threshold, his entire body went haywire. As a sentinel, Brynnius lacked sexuality, and had no concept of outer beauty, so his dick growing hard stunned him. It was a sensation foreign to Brynnius, yet it wasn’t unpleasant.
His mind was overloaded with the terrific smell—a mixture of vanilla cupcakes and cinnamon coffeecake. At the end of the hall, Brynnius spied Venerable Knight Arvandus Ruarc-Daray—a member of his family and the only man to be permanently resurrected twice.
Next to Arvandus was a stranger with a head full of glossy, gorgeous black curls. He was built on a massive scale. As they moved closer, Brynnius wondered if the stranger’s shoulders were even broader than his own. Although he wanted to get closer to the stranger, there was too much chaos in Brynnius’s mind for him to move. The man at Arvandus’s side was Brynnius’s mate, and Brynnius had no idea what to do.
A beautiful smile crossed the man’s face, and there was a confused curiosity in his gaze. Since the man was freshly resurrected, Brynnius doubted he understood their connection or felt the same clamoring inside himself.
“Fallen Knight, Rank One Samson, this is Skeleton Lord Brynnius Daray,” Arvandus said with a flash of his oft-used grin.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Skeleton Lord. I apologize that I don’t have a last name yet to give you. The Arch Lich wishes to honor my dragon and needs to speak to the Emperors in order to decide how best to do that.”
“The pleasure is mine, Samson,” Brynnius remarked softly and offered him a nod.
Sentinels did not touch strangers, though Brynnius readily admitted to himself that he wanted to be close to Samson. It would have to wait. The fallen knight was unsteady on his feet, so Brynnius didn’t want to keep him in the hall, despite his innate desire to know everything about him and not leave his side.
“Are you on the way to your room?” Brynnius asked.
“Yes, VK Arvandus told me to pick the one closest to the cafeteria.”
That was no surprise to Brynnius; he was aware Arvandus always offered that favored space to the first recruit. Flustered, Brynnius was unsure if he’d remembered to offer Samson a traditional sentinel nod in greeting, so he bobbed his head.
“Good choice. Good luck with your training,” he said.
“Thank you, Skeleton Lord.”
“See ya later, Brynn,” Arvandus remarked.
They turned the corner toward the dormitories, and Brynnius smiled at Samson, who turned back twice. The fallen knight might not understand their connection yet, but Brynnius was bolstered by his interest. It’d help him get through the next eight weeks, since Brynnius couldn’t be with Samson until he graduated.
Brynnius was determined to allow Samson to train without distractions as Reverent Knight Drystan had allowed his mate to do when he was resurrected. But unlike Drystan, Brynnius intended to tell no one about his encounter with Samson. The last thing Brynnius wanted to do was keep his family on pins and needles with excitement over the next two months.
After Samson was discharged from the Ascension Center, Brynnius would finally be able to talk to him again, and they’d be able to start their journey as mates. Until then, Brynnius planned on reflecting often on the extraordinarily handsome man with the unique eyes, and preparing for their future.
About the Author
Jessamyn Kingley lives in Nevada where she begs the men in her head to tell her their amazing stories which she dutifully writes it all down in what has become a small mountain of notebooks. She falls in love with each couple and swears whatever book she wrote last is her absolute favorite.
Jessamyn is married and working toward remembering to start the dishwasher without being distracted by the scent of the magical detergent. For personal enjoyment, she aids in cat rescue while slashing and gashing her way through mobs in various MMORPGs. Caffeine is her very best friend and is only cast aside briefly for the sin better known as BBQ potato chips.