Mon
May 11 2015 11:00am

Born of Defiance: Exclusive Excerpt

Born of Defiance by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Born an Outcast, Talyn Batur has spent the whole of his life fighting against the prejudice of his people. An Andarion without a father is not something anyone wants to be.

But when his companion’s brother draws him into a plot against the Andarion crown, he finds himself torn between the loyalty to their planetary government that his mother has beaten into him and his own beliefs of justice and right.

Now, he must decide for himself to remain a pawn of their government or to defy everything and everyone he’s ever known to stand up to tyranny. It’s a gamble that will either save his life or end it. And when old enemies align with new ones, it’s more than just his own life at risk.

Get a sneak peek at  Sherrilyn Kenyon's Born of Defiance (available May 12, 2015) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

(Want more? Find out how you can enter for a chance to win a copy of your own here. Plus, listen to Chapter 1 of the Born of Defiance audiobook here.)

Unsure and terrified for Talyn, Felicia chewed her nails as she paced the back room while she listened to the sound of the crowd. She heard hisses and boos and cheers so loud, they shook the stained walls around her. None of it told her how Talyn was doing.

If he was winning or losing.

Part of her was dying to know, but she’d meant what she said. She couldn’t stand the thought of watching him be pounded on by another fighter. Especially not with the savagery that went on in the name of entertainment. Ring fighting was the most popular sport in Andaria.

And it was the most brutal.

Every year, dozens of fighters died in the Ring. Dozens more after the match ended, from the injuries they’d sustained during the fight. While they wore masks and taped their clawed hands to keep from being scarred, there were no real rules. They fought until only one was left standing. However long that took.

A loud, thunderous roar went up. It was followed by an alarm of some sort.

Was it over?

Biting her lip, she went to the door. She held her breath until she saw Talyn coming down the hallway with a furious light in his eyes. Blood dripped from the mask over his face. More bruises and cuts covered him. But his injuries didn’t seem to bother him at all.

As soon as he saw her, he pulled the mask off, spit out his fang guard, and gave her a grim smile. “Still undefeated.”

Proud, and honestly, a bit terrified by this side of him that didn’t seem to mind bleeding, she swallowed hard. There was an aura of death that clung to him now. “Are you okay?”

“Yeah. I’ll feel the burn later. Right now…” He picked her up with a terrifying ease and hugged her close.

She started to wrap her arms around him, until she saw all the bleeding welts on his back. They had to be killing him. “We need to get you something for your pain.”

He shook his head as he set her back on her feet and led her into his dressing room. “I can’t take anything.”

“Talyn—“

He set his mask down and unwrapped his hands. “They’ll test my blood as soon as I hit the barracks. If I have any drugs in my system, I’ll be court-martialed and imprisoned for it.”

“An aspirin?”

“I’ll be court-martialed and imprisoned,” he repeated. “I can’t have anything in my system while I might be called to fly. It’s an order my CO’s dead serious about.”

Aghast, she stared up at him and the horrific marks on his body. It looked as if his opponent had not only managed to get the covers off and claw him, but bitten him, too. There were definite fang marks all over his left arm. “How can you stand it?”

He shrugged nonchalantly. “I have no choice, Felicia. Without a paternal lineage, I can’t even work as a janitor. The military’s all I have open to me. And I’m damn lucky that I was able to fight well enough to be allowed into OTS, given my caste.”

And the armada was the only solid income he could bank on. Ring fighting didn’t pay for fighters.

While the promoters got rich, the fighters didn’t. They were given a small stipend for each fight, and prestige, but no one could afford to live on a fighter’s pay.

Not even a champion’s.

Andarions fought for glory and military rank, not riches. While humans paid their fighters exorbitant amounts, Andarions didn’t. It was to be expected of their males that they could take a beating and not flinch. And because of their ferocity and size, Andarions were barred from human sports. Which kept Talyn trapped on Andaria, in this hellish existence.

She cursed the unfairness of it all as she helped him undress and enter the large shower so that they could wash the blood and sweat off.

Talyn winched as his adrenaline fled and left him in pain. He leaned with one arm against the wall while the water stung the various cuts on his body. In spite of the rancid physical agony, he hardened at the sensation of Felicia’s hands sliding over his bare flesh as she soaped his skin for him. Her cheeks were bright pink, but she didn’t say a word while she gently and carefully bathed him. In spite of the beating, his senses spun with bliss at being touched for the first time by a female’s gentle hand.

Reaching out, he brushed his fingers along the line of her jaw and watched her pupils dilate in response to his touch. He still couldn’t believe that she’d accept his caresses without flinching or insulting him.

Her nipples hardened through the fabric of her thin shirt. His breathing ragged, he was dying to know what she looked like naked. Because she was a virgin, her agency photos had been of her in skimpy panties and an exercise bra.

On the night they’d met, he could have forced her to disrobe so that he could inspect her body, but he’d refused to embarrass her in front of the others.

Now…

They were alone and all he wanted was to be inside her.

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Copyright © 2015 by Sherrilyn Kenyon.
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New York Times bestselling author Sherrilyn Kenyon is a regular in the #1 spot. This extraordinary bestseller continues to top every genre in which she writes. More than 60 million copies of her books are in print in more than one hundred countries. Her current series include The Dark-Hunters, The League, and Chronicles of Nick. Her Chronicles of Nick and Dark-Hunter series are soon to be major motion pictures.

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2 comments
Maria Smith
1. TexasBookLover
Sherrilyn Keynon was one of the first authors I read that got me hooked on romance books with her Dark Hunter series. Unfortunatly that series has gone off course a bit but I am still a die hard fan of The League series. It is absolutely amazing every damn time! I just wish the wait between books wasn't so long!
Audiej28
2. Audiej28
The Dark Hunter Series is awesome it got me hooked on her books.
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