Published by: Shiloh Walker
Release Date: Original Publication 2004, Revised March 2021
Genre: Erotic Romance /Romance Erotica, Fantasy
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Tyriel, the half-breed daughter of an elvish prince and a Wildling lady, had heard it said that a union between an angel and an incubus would have been more likely than the love match between her parents.
Wildly independent, she had no use for days at court in the elvish kingdoms. Leaving that life behind, she made her living as a hired sword. As a mercenary, she fought with all the passion of the Wildling clans and the magic of her father’s people, the reclusive fae.
It was a carefree life…mostly. If the loneliness seemed to haunt her at times, she just hid it with a smile.
That carefree existence changes when she meets Aryn of Olstead, a powerful, sinfully seductive swordsman. Without even trying, he catches her eye, then her heart and soul.
Aryn of Olstead was no stranger to the lonely life on the road. While he might be drawn to the half-fae merc with wicked eyes and a seductive laugh, he knows better than to let himself get too close.
Part Wildling, part elf, Tyriel is everything magical in the world. Aryn is only a hired sword.
Yet, the two bond and spend years working at each other’s side, until destructive secrets and hidden needs drove a wedge between them.
As a trust built through sweat, blood and battle slowly erodes, their partnership falls apart. Tyriel disappears without a trace.
When Aryn learns she’s in danger, nothing else matters but finding her. Rescuing her comes with a high price…one higher than he ever imagined.
Warning: Story depicts violence and implied off-the-page sexual assault
“Danger and darkness wait, and all for her.”
Aryn rose from his bedroll, unable to sleep. He was pacing far away from camp to avoid disturbing his partner, and of course, the blasted enchanter couldn’t leave him be.
Turning, he met the eyes of the long-dead enchanter as he wavered into view.
“Tyriel is in danger?” he asked doubtfully. “She can handle any blasted thing that comes her way.”
“Not this time. Turn back, before she is lost to you.”
“Why do you insist on talking like the woman belongs to me?” Aryn growled, advancing on Irian. “She is not mine. Not ours. You’re nothing but a ghost and I’m…” He sighed and stopped, still several feet away.
“You’re what? A fool? Yes, you’re a fool for not seeing what’s right in front of you. I might be dead and unable to take her for my own, but you are not! Take her. Keep her, love her.”
“Love her? Her? Keep her?” Aryn sputtered, unaware that Tyriel had risen from her bedroll and stood in the distance, listening.
is words, solid and real, drifted to her easily on the night air. Irian’s, though she could see his spectral form, had less substance and she heard nothing he said.
“Aye. The girl loves you madly. The need is an ache in her belly to be with you, to love you and be loved…to stay at your side as more than just comrades in arms. You feel the same for her.”
“You’d tell me any damn thing you thought might get me to climb atop her and fuck her. You’re a damn perverted voyeur and damn me for not knowing how to block you out of my mind,” Aryn growled, his hands closing into fists as he fought the urge to do exactly what the enchanter suggested. “She is not for me. I am not for her. We are partners, nothing more. We will never be more.”
“You deny that she is in your heart. You will admit you want her, because wanting a woman is easy,” Irian said softly. His long curling hair shifted around his shoulders as he moved closer to Aryn, his golden skin gleaming in the black night. His widely spaced dark eyes narrowed. “You want to touch her, taste her, fuck her…love her. You want her to be yours.”
“No. If I need a woman, want a woman, I’ll find a fucking whore in Ifteril,” Aryn snapped, glaring at Irian with furious eyes, his body rigid and aching with hunger. His cock throbbed and all he wanted, all, was lying in her bedroll, not far away.
Yes! All I want lies there. All. But he kept the words locked behind his teeth. “But I am not fucking Tyriel just to please a dead enchanter.”
“And what about to please her? Yourself?”
“I can please myself with my fist.”
Her eyes stinging with tears, Tyriel backed away in silence, her belly hot and tight with grief. She made sure to muffle her presence, physically, magically.
Aryn and Irian couldn’t know she had been there. She doubted her pride could handle it. She knew her crumbling heart couldn’t.
She just had to hold it together long enough to get some rest, then slip away from camp in the dawn hours.
She’d had enough, wished for enough, been rejected enough. She was done.
This…this impossible dream was over.
Warning: book contains violence, implies off-the-page sexual assault
This book was originally titled Touch of Gypsy Fire. In 2004, when this book released, I was unaware of the negative connotations associated with the term ‘gypsy’. Since then, I have become more aware of such matters.
While I love this story, I don’t want insult a marginalized population that has already suffered far too much harm, so I’ve come upon another name for the race in this world previously called Gypsies and I’ve retitled the book.
Additionally, I've rewritten numerous parts of the story to address issues I found while reading through the book where I, without realizing it at the time, placed blame on the victims for crimes perpetrated against them. Even in fantasy worlds & fiction, victims shouldn't carry the burdens of their abusers actions and I want my fiction to reflect that message.