Wed
Jun 15 2016 12:00pm

Born of Legend: Exclusive Excerpt

Born of Legend (The League: Nemesis Rising Series #9) by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Hunted. Hated. Betrayed. Dagger Ixur is on the run for his life. As one of the most recognizable members of his royal house, he has a bounty on his head that guarantees him no quarter from any friend or even family. But surrender isn’t in him. He will fight to the bitter end. A resolve that is sorely tested when he narrowly escapes a trap that leaves him severely wounded. With what he believes is his dying breath, he saves a boy born to an extinct race from a group out to enslave the kid for his legendary abilities.

Ushara Altaan has spent her entire life hating those born to nobility. After all, it was a royal house that drove her entire species into virtual extinction. As a rare Andarion Fyreblood, she is sworn to end the existence of any royal she finds. But when Dagger saves her son’s life, she is torn between her people and a debt that can never be repaid.

Yet worse than Dagger’s family that’s still out to end hers, are the League assassins after him who will stop at nothing to claim the lives of her Tavali family. The only hope she has to save them all is to put their future and her faith into the hands of the very enemy whose grandmother personally extinguished Ushara’s legendary lineage. But how can she ever trust Dagger when he is a disinherited outlaw whose very name is synonymous with betrayal?

Get a sneak peek at Sherrilyn Kenyon's Born of Legend (available June 21, 2016) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Jullien sighed as he watched Vasili leave and waited for the raw ass-chewing he was sure Ushara had planned for him. “It’s okay, Admiral. I’ll be the bad guy and run him off from now on, so you don’t have to. I understand. You’re his mother. I’m the one he should be angry with. Not you.”    

“What?”

“That’s what you wanted to say, right? Warn me to stay away from your kid before I ruin him with my darkheart ways. Sheila’s already warned me that it doesn’t look right, but since we’re always in public and out in the open bay, in front of others, I didn’t think it would hurt anything to help him with his homework during my breaks. I know what it’s like to grow up without a father or a brother, or another male to talk to at that age, so I was just trying to be nice to him. But don’t worry. I won’t do it again. Unlike me at his age, he has uncles and a grandfather who loves him. I’ll stay away from your kid. No problem.”

Shaking her head, she closed the distance between them and took his arm in her hand so that she could check his injury. She grimaced at the raw, angry skin where he’d been scalded while saving her son, yet hadn’t even raised his voice at Vasili. Instead, he’d been patient and kind. Caring.

Protective.

Things he’d never been shown.

“That wasn’t what I wanted to talk to you about.”

“No?”

“No. I wanted to ask about my sister’s ship. Do you know how it got repaired?”

A slow becoming red stain crept over his features.

She glanced up at him from beneath her lashes.

He looked away.

“Jullien?”

He tried to pull out of her grasp, but she held him fast.

“Why won’t you answer?”

Refusing to meet her gaze, he let out a deep breath. “It was the least I could do after what your parents did for me while I recovered. I owed them for the food, medicine, and bed.”    

“You didn’t owe my sister.”

“I know. But I overheard your father talking about the loan while I was there so I knew it would keep him out of trouble.”

She still couldn’t get him to look at her. It was as annoying as it was sweet. “When did you work on it?”

“At night. After work. Days off .”

She winced at the hours he must have spent on it alone. He would have been working on it until dawn to get it done so fast, especially with his injuries. “And the parts? Where did you get the creds for those?”        

He tried to pull away again.

“Dagger?”

He finally met her gaze. His eyes were empty except for the anguish that seemed to be branded so deep in his soul that it held a permanent place there. “I traded my ring for them.”    

She was aghast at him. “What? Why?”

Shrugging, he blushed again. “Your sister has a family to support. I don’t.”

“But that ring—”

“It never did anyone any good. Trust me on that. Hell, I don’t even know why I kept it.”    

“Admiral?”

Jullien finally managed to pull away from her grasp.

Ushara turned as Gunnar called for her again. “ You’re needed at command.”

“Coming.”

Jullien had vanished so fast, she didn’t even see where he went. There was no sign of him anywhere. How a male that size could vanish so completely and soundlessly, she’d never understand. He was more skillful than a League assassin.

Frustrated, she cursed under her breath. With no choice, she headed back to her office. But with every step she took, she kept wondering about him. Why would he help the very ones who despised him so?

Then again, it was sadly all he knew. Unlike her, he’d never had anywhere he really belonged. No group that accepted him. Neither human nor Andarion, he stood out among both races. Shunned, ridiculed, and hated by both.

The mean-spirited tabloids had taught her that he hadn’t exaggerated in the least.

Prince Potbelly. The Rotund Royal. Jumbo Jullien . . .

They would all wet their pants to see him now. Lean and ripped. Even in ragged clothing, he was edible and irresistible. There wasn’t a female anywhere who wouldn’t slit her own mother’s throat for a piece of that delectable ass, with or without a noble lineage attached to it.

And sadly, the tabloids had only given him peace from their viciousness after he’d been disinherited. With one last volley of cruelty, they’d run headline after headline extolling his brother’s rise as heir and Jullien’s fall from grace.

Tahrs Jullien Banished to Obscurity! All Hail Tahrs Nykyrian! Huzzah! Photos of Nykyrian’s coronation had been run alongside those of Jullien’s arrest mugshots where they’d overlaid the word Exiled or Outcast over his face. Or worse, they simply put an X over Jullien’s image.

No wonder he’d traded his royal signet ring. In retrospect, why had he kept it?

If she lived to be a thousand years old, she’d never understand how his parents could have thrown him away, and not called to see if he was all right. Just once. Weren’t they the least bit curious about what had become of their own son? If he was even alive? It just didn’t make sense to her that no one in his family cared for him. 

At all.

And that broke her heart completely.

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Copyright © 2016 by Sherrilyn Kenyon.
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Learn more about or order a copy of Born of Legend by Sherrilyn Kenyon, available June 21, 2016:

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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. With more than 40 million copies of her books 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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