Authors: Julia Mills
Only For Her Dragon
Dragon Guard Series #6
There Are No Coincidences.
The Universe Does Not Make Mistakes.
Fate Will Not Be Denied.
Copyright © 2015 Julia Mills
All Rights Reserved. This book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the author except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.
: This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or used in a fictional manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.
This is an adult erotic paranormal romance with love scenes and mature situations. It is only intended for adult readers over the age of 18.
Edited by Lisa Miller, Angel Editing Services
Proofread by Rose Holub
Cover Designed by Linda Boulanger with Tell Tale Book Covers
Formatted by Danielle James
THANK YOU TO EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU!!! Without you reading my books, telling your friends, reviewing and supporting my crazy imagination, none of this would be possible. I am humbled and incredibly blessed to have each of you in my world!! YOU ROCK!!!!
A BIG HUGE THANK YOU goes to my beta readers, Tonya Allen, Cindy Barton, Charlene Bauer, Stacey Bradley, Charlene Cain, Tammy Hall, Rosemary Hendry, Rose Holub, Danielle James, Laurie Johnson, Rebecca Larsen, Audi Lewis, Karen Mikhael, Lisa Miller, Susan Newman, Anna Salamatin, Jacklynn Sizemore, Robin Smith, Bridget Thomas-Parker, Stacy Quakenbush, Carol Ray, Patti Kalosky-Snyder, Lisa Crosby Taylor, Cindy Turner, Sandy Elens Vogel, Janna Ward, Melanie Williams, Amy Young - YOU ARE THE BEST!
Thanks to Lisa Miller, who wades through my lack of commas and missing words, along with the insane way I say things, to get a finished product I can say I am proud to say is mine.
Thank you to Linda Boulanger, who from my crazy character descriptions creates the most breathtaking covers I could ever imagine. She is magical!
THANK YOU COVER MASTER!
Also by Julia Mills
Her Dragon to Slay, Dragon Guard Series #1
Her Dragon’s Fire, Dragon Guard Series #2
Haunted by Her Dragon, Dragon Guard Series #3
For the Love of Her Dragon, Dragon Guard Series #4
Saved by Her Dragon, Dragon Guard #5
Her Love, Her Dragon: The Saga Begins, A Dragon Guard prequel
Dare to Dream! Find the Strength to Act! Never Look Back!
Thank you, God.
To my girls, Liz and Em, I Love You. Every day, every way, always.
To Emma Edwards, the absolute best writing partner in the world. You are BEAUTIFULLY BRILLIANT in every way. Is it Wine Day yet?
To Charlene Bauer, absolutely the best right hand anyone could ever have. She is my friend, my sounding board, and cracks a mean whip. Thank you from the bottom of my heart! I couldn’t do it without you.
SAVED BY HER DRAGON
Index of the Words from the Original Language of the Dragon Kin
Ta’mo chroi istigh ionat
…….My Heart Is Within You
Mo’ ghra’ ru’nda…
….You Are My Everything
Is breá liom tú anois agus go deo
……Love to His Heart
E’adromar a anam
……Light to His Soul
Ta’ su’il a anseo
…….Hope to His Future
I gcónaí agus go deo. Mine grá
……Always and forever. Mine to love
Teacht anseo, maite
…....Come here, mate
Chosaint agus a sha’bha’il
……Protect and Save
O’n and bean naithe
……Amen and Blessings
Is brea’ liom tu’
……I Love You
“We haven’t had this much to drink since college,” Charlie slurred as her head fell to the side. “And I still have the incriminating photos to prove it,” she giggled. “I wonder what your hubby would think of that.”
“Oh, you know Lance, he’d just ask for a repeat performance,” her best friend, Samantha, chuckled.
That was the problem…
Charlie didn’t know Lance, at least not like she thought she did. And what hurt the most was that she felt like she didn’t know Sam anymore either. There’d been a time when they’d shared
, a time when the longest they could go without talking was twenty-four hours. When Sam married Lance Kavanaugh a little over a year ago, that all changed.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, things got exponentially more complicated a couple of weeks ago.
The guy who said ‘Life changes in the blink of an eye’ definitely knew what he was talking about. One minute Charlie had been kissing the sexiest man she’d ever met, and the next she had been looking at a dragon…
a freakin’ dragon
Of course, Aaron had told her to go back to the party before he’d sped away, but Dr. Charlene Gallagher did
take orders. She’d followed the man that continued to haunt her dreams at what she thought was a safe distance. Running in heels across the forest floor, barely able to see his back, Charlie had seriously doubted her judgment. That was before she heard the sounds of someone in distress. As the daughter of a policeman,and a trained doctor, she’
rushed headlong into the clearing.
It had taken her brain a second to process what was in front of her….and when it did, she absolutely could not believe her eyes.
There stood Sam, alongside her
family, looking at a mythical creature. They all seemed somewhat stunned, but for the most part, not near as freaked as Charlie felt.
Is it still considered mythical if I saw it with my own eyes?
A question she still pondered.
Too much wine…think about it tomorrow.
Charlie had done the only thing she could. She’d run…far and fast… to her car. Then she drove like Danica Patrick straight to her condo. Once inside, with all four locks secured and the curtains drawn, she’d taken her first real breath. The floodgates had opened, and for the next twelve hours, she alternated between screaming, crying, and cursing.
The sun rose as she stared out her bedroom window, too drained to move. Sleep finally came…. and so did the dreams. Erotic dreams of passionate kisses and eyes as blue as the ocean, which then turned to dreams of dragons and knights fighting battles she’d only ever read about. Fortunately, her cell phone rang three hours later. Unfortunately, Sam’s name came across the display. Charlie hit ignore.
And she hit ignore every hour on the hour for the next two days.
The morning of the third day, she called the hospital where she and Sam were both residents. Told them she had a family emergency and needed time off. When the woman in Human Resources informed her that she had accrued six weeks of leave, all Charlie could do was sigh…it didn’t seem like enough.
Mustering up her courage, she then called Sam. Curt and to the point, Charlie said, “Staying at the cottage. Do not come. I’ll call when I’m ready.”
It was probably a dick move since the house was Sam’s, but Charlie couldn’t care. Hitting the button to disconnect the call, she dropped her cell on the couch and once again fell into a mess of tears and anger.
The two weeks that followed royally sucked! After a combined eleven years of college, medical school, and residency, Charlie had never taken off more than two days in a row. Not to mention, she
talked to Sam.
Then there was the matter of Aaron O’Brien, the stupid jerk that made her pulse race and her temperature rise. The asshole whose kiss she couldn’t forget. The moron whose lips had branded her, leaving her yearning for more. The idiot she had seen running around the lake behind the house a few times.
he’s the last man on earth I want to see
Yeah…I’m the biggest liar ever
About a week after what Charlie referred to as ‘the incident’, she started walking to pass the time. Exercise had always been a four-letter word, but how many times could she read the same magazines or watch the same reruns? She knew whom every Bachelor had slept with and every plate Gordon Ramsay had thrown by heart.
On the morning of the third day of her new walking program, she found the large terracotta pot on Sam’s redwood deck filled with daisies, one of her favorite flowers. She chalked it up to Lance trying to apologize for his wife.
Not wanting their kindness to go to waste, she began taking care of them.
Four days later a brand new rose bush was miraculously growing on the side of the barbeque pit. It had been so expertly planted that it took Charlie an extra look to realize it hadn’t been there the day before. What baffled her more than the fact that someone was bringing her beautiful flowers, were the incredibly large blooms…
out of season
. It was as though their beauty was just for her.
Laughing aloud at her own ridiculous thoughts, Charlie continued on her walk, chastising herself for thinking
after what she’d witnessed. Returning home, she decided that if anything else unexplained happened, she’d have to break down and call Sam. Enough was enough. None of it made sense. Her best friend was a sweetheart but had never been one to give flowers or anything of the sort. Charlie was still pissed, but if Samantha was willing to go so far as to anonymously leave presents, then it was time to try and mend fences.
The next morning she had coffee and a bagel, perused the newspaper, and then headed out. She looked and looked, even walked around each tree, but there were no new flowers, not a bud, not a petal…
The same was true for the next five days.
Convincing herself it was for the best Charlie resumed her routine. Forgiving Sam was something she knew she had to do, but it still hurt to have been kept in the dark about something so monumentally important. Even after all the explanation filled voicemails, some that revealed more secrets, she just wasn’t ready to move on. There was no denying she missed everyone, some more than others, but she wasn’t at the point of rational discussion, so she ignored. It was just easier.
Day fifteen was exhausting. Who knew relaxing could take so much out of a girl? Charlie hadn’t been sleeping well and the days seem to stretch on forever. There was no work and no one to talk to. Then there had been all the times her cell phone had rung. It was beginning to get harder and harder to ignore her friend. Checking her call log, she counted fifteen missed calls in all. Mostly from Sam, but some were from a number she didn’t recognize.
Giving in, mostly because she couldn’t take the solitude one moment longer, Charlie picked up the phone and called Sam. Whatever residual anger she felt melted away when Sam’s daughter, Sydney, answered the phone. “Hey, Aunt Charlie! You still mad?”
Chuckling despite herself, Charlie answered, “No, sweetheart, I’m not mad anymore.”
No sooner had the words left her mouth than squeals of delight filled the earpiece. The sounds of tennis shoes slapping against hardwood floors had Charlie picturing her adopted niece running through the house as she screamed. “Mom! Mom! It’s Aunt Charlie! She’s not mad anymore! She’s on your cell phone!”
In less than a minute, Samantha said a tentative hello. There were exactly fifteen point two seconds of awkward silence, two more minutes of apologies, and then the friends truly started talking. They discussed, argued, and cried until both cell phones beeped at their loss of charge. Right before her phone died, Charlie told Sam to grab something alcoholic and head her way.
Four hours and two bottles of wine later, the two friends had rehashed many things, starting as far back as the first day they met. However, the ladies were still kind of dancing around the moment Charlie had unwittingly witnessed a living, breathing dragon. The reason for all the secrecy made sense, but it still stung that Sam hadn’t trusted her and she couldn’t keep from saying it for about the tenth time.
“You know I love you like a sister… and I forgive you… but my feelings are
hurt. Did you really think you couldn’t trust me?” Charlie asked, working hard to focus after all the wine.
Sam shook her head. “Dammit, Charlie, you know I trust you with my life…with my
. You just have to understand…it was part of the deal. When I vowed to love Lance forever, I also vowed to keep his secrets.
the secrets of his people. Nothing against you, Charlie, nothing at all. It was something I
to do. Had it been up to me, you would’ve known everything
after I did.”
Charlie could hear the honesty in Sam’s voice, along with the burden of all the secrecy and all her leftover frustration simply vanished. “I forgive you,” she whispered. Then added, “And I hope you forgive me for being so pigheaded.”
Sam snickered as she rose from her chair, stumbled in Charlie’s direction, and all but fell in her lap before hugging her tight. “Pigheaded is what I’ve come to expect from you. Wouldn’t have you any other way.”
The two laughed until tears streamed down their faces. It was Charlie that regained enough composure to speak first. “Whatever Mrs. Dragon Lady! Let’s get some of that pizza they delivered an hour ago. I’m sure it’s good, cold, and greasy by now.”
Heading for the kitchen, they leaned on each other to stay upright. Charlie heated up a couple slices of pizza while Sam grabbed Diet Pepsis. Eating in silence for a few minutes, Charlie felt the buzz of the alcohol wearing off. She wondered if they were ever going to address the elephant…make that
in the room.
Two bites later and unable to hold back any longer, Charlie blurted out, “All right, spill. I’ve seen the dragon. Know some of the secrets. Tell me what’s really going on.”
Sam stopped chewing and sat completely still. Charlie watched as her best friend blew out the breath she’d been holding. Several more seconds passed before Sam finally said, “Well…”
Their eyes met across the table and it was Charlie’s turn to hold her breath. The staring contest lasted almost ten full seconds before Sam spoke again. “I think it would be better if you asked me questions. I honestly have no idea where to start or how much you want to know.”
Charlie rolled her eyes and sighed, but saw the honesty on her friend’s face and decided to play along. “All right, one of your messages said something about Anya being a dragon and that being a big deal. Was she who I saw in the clearing?”
Sam nodded. “Yes, that was the first time she had ever transformed. She’s the first female dragon in
of years. The females were all killed during their war with the hunters and wizards.”
Charlie held up her index finger, signaling Sam to stop speaking, already realizing there was so much more than she could’ve ever imagined. Standing, she walked to the counter, grabbed a notepad and pen, and returned to her seat. After a deep, cleansing breath she said, “Go on.”
Sam smiled and started again. “The dragons have two main enemies in the world that have been around almost as long as they have. They’re the hunters and the wizards, and these assholes have taken damn near everything from dragon kin. First of all, the hunters are a fanatical group of killers’ hell bent on destroying anything supernatural. And before you ask…yes, there are more things out there than just dragon shifters, but that’s for a different day.”
After a sip of her soda, Sam continued, “The wizards are just bat shit crazy. That’s the best description I can give you. I’m happy to say the ones that were in this area all blew up with Andrew’s mansion.”
on her list.
“Andrew is Aidan and Aaron’s younger brother and also belongs in the ‘bat shit crazy’ column in your notes. He turned traitor about eight years ago when he was captured and tortured by a group of wizards. He blames Aidan for what happened and Aaron too to some extent…at least, I think. Everyone thought he was dead, but then he reappeared when Kyndel met Rayne. Since then he’s tried everything possible to kill all the guys. He was in the mansion when it blew up, but Rian, Royce’s brother, found a tunnel under the rubble and scented Andrew, so they’re sure he’s still alive somewhere.”
Just the mention of Aaron’s name made Charlie’s pulse race. She pushed all thoughts of the irritating man to the back of her mind and focused on everything she had learned in just a few minutes. Making a few more notes, she looked up to find her friend studying her as if she was one of their patients. “I’m okay,” she chuckled, hoping Sam believed her lie. The truth was she was freaking the hell out and wondered where it would all end, or if it ever would. No matter, she had to know the truth.
“Are you sure?” Sam questioned, reaching across the table and squeezing Charlie’s hand.