Awakened: Excerpt

A world she never imagined–and choices she never thought possible…

The prince always comes, true to his moment. Time and again, he happens along just as the enchantment ends, the hedge of brambles and briars that claimed so many luckless contenders bursting into radiant bloom and magically parting to let him through.

Strange, is it not, that simply being in the right place at the right time, should win one man the throne, the castle, and the hand of the slumbering princess within? What test is there to prove him braver, nobler, or worthier than those who perished among the thorns for attempting the castle too soon? For all we know, he might be a rogue, a scoundrel, a careless seducer like the prince of Signor Basile—who took his pleasure of the fair sleeper and spared no further thought for her until one of the babes so begotten woke her by sucking the splinter from her finger.

Fortunately, our prince is not such a rascal. Nor, in the age at which our tale begins, is he a prince in the strictest sense of the word. But the blood of several royal houses runs in his veins, though at considerable remove, and his manners are those of a gentleman born. Handsome, clean-living, well-bred, perhaps a trifle diffident, he is exactly the sort of fellow one might choose to stumble upon an enchanted castle and its slumbering occupants when a century-old spell finally runs its course. A fellow who would regard the sleepers with wonder and pity and the princess—the one at the heart of the spell—with something more. A fellow whose kiss would hold equal measures of desire and tenderness—and who would instantly vow to love and cherish the awakening beauty as his own, from the moment her eyes opened upon an unfamiliar world.

Surely, with such a prince, happily ever after is a foregone conclusion. For the Sleeping Beauty always loves the prince who wakes her.

Or does she?

Available from Blue Castle Publishing

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