Yes, I think I may have bent the writing rules on this one, dear readers. My upcoming royal romance, SEDUCING HER PRINCE, which is available for pre-order in the ROYAL AND RECKLESS Box Set, has multiple point-of-view styles. My heroine Eleni tells her story in first-person, present tense style. My hero Kasper’s story is presented in third-person, past tense.
I know! What was I thinking? But somehow, this mix of styles seems to fit. I wrote it like that because the story called to me that way, and when I tried to “fix” it by choosing one or the other, it didn’t seem to work.
I showed a sample at a writing retreat to a couple of multi-published women’s fiction authors, thinking these wise souls would tell me to change it. Nope. They loved it!
Then I sent it to my editor, thinking she’d tell me I was nuts! Well, sort of nope. She probably did think I was nuts, but she also loved it and said I should keep it exactly the way I’d written it!
I hope, if and when you pick up a copy of SEDUCING HER PRINCE, you’ll let me know what you think, too. Because at the end of the day, I write for you, my readers.
Here’s an excerpt…
Ripples. Cast one stone, and it seems like the ripples fan out for miles in every direction. Even after you’ve turned and walked away from the water’s edge. Even after you’ve gotten in your car and driven halfway across the country to escape the consequences. The ripples continue to spread from that one, tiny little stone.
That’s my life. Casting stones, and then speeding away as the ripples reach ever outward in a series of never-ending—usually destructive—circles.
I don’t want to cast any more stones. I’ve had enough. This latest job will be my last; I’d already decided that before receiving the briefing notes last night, but now…even more so. There’s something about this one that doesn’t feel right. I can’t put my finger on it, but something is off. As soon as this assignment is over I’ll be gone. I know how to disappear. Mama and I did it often enough when I was young and I’m a lot more knowledgeable about the ways of the world now than when I was eleven.
My mind instantly veers away from dangerous memories and I try to concentrate once again on the text message containing final instructions about when, where and who. It’s okay. I can do this. Focus on the job.
Crown Prince Kasper Devon Leoni III. A mouthful of a name, that’s for sure. I’ve heard of the kingdom of Leonioro but have no idea where it is. Somewhere in the Mediterranean region perhaps, judging by the Italian-sounding name and place. What the hell is a playboy European prince doing down here in Melbourne, Australia?
Does it matter what he’s doing? Not to me. At least, it shouldn’t. I have my instructions, and starting tomorrow, I’ll be on the clock and on the job. Again, a strange niggle in my belly makes its presence known. Anxiety? Foreboding? I can’t tell what’s causing this skittish feeling, but after all these years I trust my instincts. The urge to run begins to take over my thoughts.
Definitely time for Eleni Mikaro to disappear once and for all. I nod, even though I’m alone in the rental apartment and there’s no one to see or respond. “Last one.” I say it aloud, just because I can. “Yes. Damn it, yes.” Definitely my last, this time. No more clients after this week. No more throwing stones.
* * *
“Just once I’d love to go for my morning run without five hundred people tagging along.” Kasper knew he sounded petulant, but today had started out bad and gotten worse, and it wasn’t even breakfast time yet. The phone call from home was not entirely unexpected and yet, hearing the latest news about his father made his gut tighten and intensified the constant headache behind his eyes. He bent to tighten a shoelace that didn’t need tightening and took a moment to catch his breath.
Every ruling monarch in history had been through this. Somehow, they still found the strength to survive. Mourning the impending loss of a parent while at the same time stepping up to take responsibility for a whole country would be devastating. Without a doubt, it would be life-changing. But not impossible.
“You know there are only four of us with you.” Jason sounded as patient as always, and hardly out of breath despite having kept up with Kasper’s faster-than-usual pace for the last fifteen minutes. Clearly, his friend’s ex-armed forces training regime had carried over to his current role and allowed him to stay in shape. Though, Jase did send a brief scowl in the direction of the three bodyguards still struggling to catch up, so maybe he was not quite as relaxed as he pretended. “And besides, you know it’s not possible to go out alone, Sir. Especially not now, with your father—”
“Yes, all right. Enough.” Kas cut off his bodyguard, knowing he was acting like a spoiled prick but not wanting another reminder of what was happening at home. Jase was correct, of course, but that knowledge only fueled his irritability even further. I need space to think. To breathe. “Can you just…drop back a bit, at least? Join the stragglers?”
For fuck’s sake. “Don’t call me that. Not here. It’s Kas. You know that. We’ve been friends since we were three. Just because you’ve been placed in charge of my security detail for this Australian trip doesn’t change anything in that regard.”
Jason’s tightened lips said otherwise, but he only nodded. “Certainly Si… I mean, certainly, um…Kas.”
When Jason complied with the request to drop back, relief rushed through Kas’s system. Finally, alone. Or at least, as alone as he would ever be now that developments at home were about to change his life irrevocably.
SEDUCING HER PRINCE is only available at present in the ROYAL AND RECKLESS Box Set. There are 23 steamy royal romances in the collection – and at only 0.99c for the whole set, this is amazing value. Order your copy today, for delivery to your eBook reader on Sept 4th.