Read Lyrion's Gift [Elven Conceptions 1] (Siren Publishing Ménage Amour ManLove) Online
Authors: Jade Astor
Elven Conceptions 1
Elven Prince Regent Talek has a problem. The duties of his office require that he father a son and royal heir, but he has no interest in either marriage or the females of his kind. When he hears the legend of a strange race of elves in which the males can bear children, he is determined to claim one of them as his mate.
Unfortunately, he soon discovers that getting what he wants will not be as easy as he imagined. Lyrion, the man his soldiers deliver to him, conceives a son and immediately begins to long for the comforts of his own village. Then there is the prince’s longtime concubinus, Kevris, who is not exactly thrilled about the newcomer and is skeptical of the king’s suggestion that all three of them raise the child together. Talek must convince both his lovers that the growing passion between them will be enough to create a happy, though unusual, royal family.
Alternative (M/M or F/F), Fantasy, Ménage a Trois/Quatre
Elven Conceptions 1
Siren Publishing, Inc.
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A SIREN PUBLISHING BOOK
IMPRINT: Ménage Amour ManLove
E-book ISBN: 978-1-62241-400-0
First E-book Publication: September 2012
Cover design by Harris Channing
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Elven Conceptions 1
Copyright © 2012
Prince Talek, Regent of Mavra, the Forest of Shades, and the Four Elven Territories, strode into the council chamber and assumed his place at the head of the long table. His ministers, who had risen and bowed their heads as he entered, took their seats a moment after he did.
Kevris, his concubinus, followed him into the room but did not take a chair for himself. Instead, he remained standing just behind the prince’s right shoulder, his hands clasped behind his back. The brief, diaphanous garment Kevris wore displayed every inch of his body to the members of the council, including the glistening strand of fine jewels he kept wrapped around the base of his cock. He needed only sway his hips a bit to make the dangling jewels clack, and he did so the moment Talek opened his mouth to address his ministers. The prince glanced back to offer a silent reprimand, which Kevris met with the usual half smirk on his face. The council members knew better than to betray their distaste for the concubinus’s antics, but Talek could read it in their narrowed eyes and compressed lips nonetheless.
He turned to Lord Qath first, fixing him with a stare that made his minister’s round, florid face blush an even deeper shade of red. “Well? Have you completed the task I charged you with?”
“I have, my prince. The royal scribe finished his examination of the scroll just this afternoon. As we anticipated, it is most unlike anything he has ever encountered before. However, after much effort, he was able to decipher the majority of the text.”
Talek smashed a fist on the table. “I ordered you to have the entire scroll deciphered!”
Qath swallowed. “Fear not, my prince. We were able to transcribe all the pertinent passages. The honored lords here assembled can confirm that.”
“Indeed—I hope so, both for your sake and my scribe’s. Tell me, then—what has this mysterious, long-missing document revealed to us about the Hidden Ones? Have they confirmed that the old legends are true? Or were they simply superstitions held by our benighted ancestors, as you have been so quick to suggest?”
He looked around the table again, prompting several of the ministers to lower their own gazes again.
“We meant no disrespect, prince,” the Master of Learning offered in a strained voice. “’Tis our loyalty to you and to your royal father that prompted our honest speculation.”
“Understood.” Talek softened his tone. Now and again, it pleased him to watch such self-important but ultimately powerless men squirm. This time, he preferred to loosen their tongues. Even Kevris leaned closer with interest. Talek heard the jewels around his cock clatter. He ignored the corresponding lift it gave within his own codpiece. “So? Have these same honored lords reached a consensus?”
“We have, prince.” The Master of Learning cleared his throat. “Of course, we must remember that the scroll in question is of an antiquated character. The elven of those days had not our understanding of nature or the workings of men’s bodies. Where knowledge failed them, they substituted fantasy—”
“Enough of your honeyed talk!” Talek’s patience vanished. “Answer me once, and answer me true—do the scrolls speak of a race of elven in which the males can bear infants?”
“Yes, my prince.” Qath seemed to choke out the words. His face grew redder than ever. “The scroll does in fact speak of such things. However, even if it were true—”
“And the scroll itself is hardly proof,” the Master of Learning supplied.
“—The race described in the text disappeared into the Forest of Shades many hundreds of years ago. From that day to this, no one has made contact with them or seen any sign of their existence. It seems unlikely that they still survive.”
“Lord Qath speaks wisely,” Lord Cardaw, Master of the Royal Guard, spoke up, nodding. “Even if such men did once exist, it is possible that disease, famine, or war obliterated them long ago.”
Talek leaned back in his chair. He did not have to look over his shoulder to know that Kevris was scowling. He, like his council members, had good reason to wish the scroll false. “My father claimed the Forest of Shades as his own many years ago, but to this day it remains scarcely explored. It is quite possible there are wonders—and elven—there we cannot imagine.”
“The Forest is also full of danger,” Lord Rogin, his Master of Magic, reminded the group. “Evil spirits dwell in the trees, the streams, and even the rocks. Indeed, these childbearing elven may have shared the darkness with them.”
“Now who is relying on ignorance and superstition?” Talek could not hide his sneer. “Surely my Royal Guard will not be deterred by a few will-o’-the-wisps hovering around dead trees and fetid swamps. Lord Cardaw, you will prepare an expedition at once. Have them scour the forest until proof emerges either that these strange elven exist or are all long dead. And if they do in fact exist…I want one brought here without delay or fail. Is that clear?”
“Perfectly clear, my prince.” Lord Cardaw bowed his head in assent.
“The rest of you will assist his men in locating our quarry. Qath, have the scribe prepare copies of any sections of the scroll that might prove useful—references to landmarks and the like.”
“I shall, my prince.” Qath, too, dipped his shoulders in reverence. “Yet I feel I must speak further on the matter, with your permission of course.”
“I am sure I need not remind you that our king continues to suffer from ill health. Obviously he would be cheered to know that his line is secure. While we all understand the appeal of begetting an heir upon the sort of mate your lordship…prefers…it simply seems to me, my lord, advisable that we have a…contingency plan in place should these admirable efforts come to naught. I can easily compile a list of well-bred ladies with impeccable discretion—”
“Enough!” Talek’s fist came down on the table again, this time with far greater force. “Such talk will neither dissuade me nor convince me to take a female mate. With regard to my father, it is true that his mind and body are equally weak as of late. However, should some lamentable event occur, I do not intend to follow him from this world for many years to come. As regent, I have the authority to choose who shall bear my heir. The members of my council—and my household—will oppose me at their peril.”
This time, he did pause and look back at Kevris, who pressed his lips together and said nothing. The ministers around the table blushed and paled by turns, stumbling over their own words in their rush to affirm their fealty. Satisfied that he had made himself clear, Talek adjourned the meeting and exited the room in a forceful gesture, his long cape snapping behind him. Kevris hurried to catch up. The jeweled strand clacked between his legs.
“Can this really be true?” he asked as he struggled to keep up. “Could there be such a thing as an elven male who could supply you with an heir?”
“I cannot say for certain,” Talek said, pausing only long enough for the guards outside his chamber to open the heavy double doors and allow them inside. “The scrolls may lie, or they may provide the key to both my future and the future of this kingdom.”