Gorgeous, powerful warlock, Indigo Vaughn, sells his magic spells to people looking to make a dream come true. One night, as he gazes down on the city below from his sky barge, The Dreamboat, he wonders why, in centuries, his own wish for a man to love hasn’t materialized.
Beautiful, sexy, Darian O’Harr has suffered his fair share of misery. He’s a musician and learned long ago to sing for his supper. New to the city, he comes to Indigo seeking a spell that will bring him the love of a handsome man.
As soon as he sets eyes on Indigo, his heart races and his body betrays his pent up needs.
Here is the man of his dreams. What can Darian do as the warlock gathers his magic to cast a spell that will bring him another man?
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Darian waited until Milan couldn’t see him from the skeeter, and then he circled the grounds and took the back gate to the path that would lead him away from the royal quarter of the city. He sped home, walking at a pace, his cloak wrapped around him, and all the time his thoughts spun. When Indigo had asked to see him again soon, he’d somehow invited his lover, his love, to visit his home. Darian didn’t know if he’d extended the invitation so that if Indigo was going to leave him because he was poor, it would happen fast and save him severe heartbreak, or if he hoped Indigo would accept his poverty, and his anxiety would diminish leaving him free to love Indigo. I’ve fallen in love with him. I never saw it coming. I wonder if he did? If he loves me, that is…
Darian passed one of the better apartment buildings. Less ancient and better kept than the one he currently lived in, the turrets gleamed lilac in the sun and willow trees draped over low white walls surrounding the building. Huge pots of jasmine stood at the bottom of the stoop. The sign he’d noticed a few days previously still hung from the wide pillared porch. ‘Apartment vacant, apply within.’
He paused. It can’t hurt to look. He walked up the path. The rich scent of jasmine wafted over him. He rang the bell.
The concierge showed him the apartment. It had a long balcony overlooking a bend in the stream that wound past the castle and fed the half-moat. Wild roses blossomed on the bank. The morning breeze played with pale pink petals, lifting them and scattering them gently into the sparkling water.
Darian fell in love with apartment. It was clean and bright with light from long windows. The pale floors of polished wood added to the charm. It sat close to the border delineating the royal quarter so would only take him minutes to walk to work.
“Yes, I’ll take it.” Surprise widened his eyes as he heard the words falling from his mouth.
“Two moons’ rent up front is required before you move anything in—one for the rent, one for security. You’ll need to sign a contract. Any nonsense, noise, bawdy behavior, litter, damage, and you’re out. I don’t give warnings. I don’t give back the security money.”
Darian cringed under the suspicious gaze of the concierge. He’d expected a less alarming transaction. He only paid weekly for the place he currently lived in. The landlord there was kinder in manner. He thought about the invitation he’d given to Indigo. How wonderful it would be to meet Indigo at the castle and bring him here instead of to his dusty little rooms in the poor area of the city. “I need to bring the money later today after I’ve collected payment for my work.”
The concierge smirked. “Work at Temptations do ya, pretty boy?”
Darian recoiled and shook his head. “I do not. Not that anyone who does is … is inferior. I’m a musician.”
“Right then, if you’re not back with payment by fifteen hundred hours the place goes to the next applicant.”
Darian nodded and backed away. He left the building. By the time he arrived at his current dwelling he wondered how he could amass two moons’ rent in so little time. The sum amounted to an entire wage period. He made coffee and gazed from his pitted window at the people passing on the boardwalk that raised them from the unmade dirt track. People in this area still used ground transport and a vehicle sped by kicking up a cloud of dust and small gravel.
Darian had showered in the sky barge. Indigo had left him alone so that they didn’t fall on each other and have sex, which they’d enjoyed all night, but would have been unable to resist again, naked and close to each other in the cascade of water. He pictured his lover laughing and his heart contracted with emotion. I must rent that apartment. I can’t bring Indigo here. I wonder if the treasurer would pay me wages in advance. I’ll ask. The queen expected him at the castle by noon to sing and play as she entertained guests for lunch.
Darian possessed only three sets of clothes and he put on the last clean shirt from his armoire. He gathered the items that needed cleaning—two shirts and a pair of pants along with two pairs of undergarments and a cotton jacket. He stuffed them in the blue canvas bag to drop them to the laundry at the end of the street. The woman there was good at her job and inexpensive. A deci-coin would buy her services. He took one from the tiny pouch of money secreted in the inside pocket of his cloak and slid it into his pants pocket so that he could pay without showing he had other coin. It was a trick he’d learned as a young man living on the streets of the neighboring world’s capital.
Copyright E.D.Parr 2017, Evernight Publishing
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