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One Heart, One Way

One Heart, One Way by Amiri Cornelia
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In 756 AD England, Prince Blaise is torn between his duty to his sire and his love for the kidnapped Princess Ricole.
Awe-Struck Publishing; June 2003
88 pages; ISBN 9781587493683
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Title: One Heart, One Way
Author: Amiri Cornelia
He couldn't tear his gaze away from the maiden. Comely she was and she stood up to Aethelbald. Nay, she was a Mercian princess. His enemy. He may have to kill her one day so he could not think of her as a woman. But how could he not? His mouth dropped open.

"I have to pull out the arrow." She turned toward a servant. "Bring ale." Then she looked at Blaise. "Drink to lessen the pain."

"Pull it now," he said for the pain bolstered his courage.

"Nay. You will drink first." Her crisp tone showed she was used to giving commands. She held a goblet brimmed with ale to his lips. "Drink."

She called for another goblet and poured some of the ale on his wound. He gritted his teeth to keep from cringing at the sting.

"I know it hurts." Her tone was tender.

"Nay," he answered curtly. "It does not hurt!"

Now she rolled her eyes and shook her head at him. Then she took a hot poker from the fire and set it against the flames.

Two guards held him down by his arms with his neck still chained to the wall.

She took a deep breath. "Ready?"

He nodded.

She yanked out the arrow stub. He would not yell out, yet he could not stop his eyes from watering from the pain. Ricole then laid the hot poker against the wound to stop the bleeding. The burning scent of his own flesh turned his stomach. He closed his eyes, shutting his gaze from her for the first time.

A servant brought another goblet of golden ale which Blaise drank. Then he handed the empty cup to the princess. He gazed once more into her large blue eyes. That was the last thing he saw before he passed out.

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