Thanks so much, Anna, for letting me share my love of historical romances. As a young married woman, I read them voraciously and enjoy them still.
I chose the topic Turning History into Fantasy because of an experience I had researching fifth century England. With the tools available to me, I found almost nothing authentic as to its people or the social and political climate. Yet I had characters in my head and a story to write. Should I drop the idea?
The answer, of course, was to free myself of actualities and create my own quasi-historical world with bits and pieces of the real stuff intertwined. I did this with two novellas now out of print, but which I plan to update and self-publish soon. Portal To Darkness is set in that fifth century. Its sequel, Woman In Black Lace, jumps to Scotland’s eighteenth. With the same characters.
Readers never questioned this, and the stories sold well. All of which indicates what a great paranormal device known as Time Travel can be.
I know a great deal about medieval England, but you can see why I was primed to overlook the finer points of history to write How to Seduce a Knight. Good thing, because suddenly my heroine revealed herself as a shapeshifting princess of the golden dragons.
Dragon shifter Gloriana, princess royal of the golden dragons of the high mountains, is heir to the throne. As the only offspring of the king, nothing has been denied her, resulting in a determined and headstrong young dragon. As Arondele, in human form and hiding her true nature, she falls in love with Rodick, a powerful knight in the enchanted kingdom of Ahnerion. When she unknowingly breaks a law among her kind which could mean both their deaths, she abandons him.
Blazing passion fuels Rodick’s hunt to find her. When he learns what she is, and knows to have her he must either outwit or challenge in battle her father, the fearsome king of the goldens, will his love stand the test? Will he and his princess survive?
He’d pulled the destrier up at the edge of the forest, but now Xertan was turning in circles in an attempt to retreat back into the woods. Rodick brought the great stallion under control. He wanted to gaze longer at this perfection.
That she rode alone surprised him, for her head was crowned with a golden circlet with four high prongs. It was the headpiece of a princess-royal, although of a house unknown to him. He knew of no princesses resembling this one, and he was acquainted with, or thought he was, those of every castle in the area. Had even bedded a few of them, he thought with a wry smile. But this woman, instinct told him, would fulfill every fantasy a lusty man could have in bed. And then some.
The horse she handled with such ease was a dappled grey, and its trappings and harness were decorated with tassels and ornate embroideries. Her flowing gown and cape were the color of emeralds and the cape was fastened over her breasts with bright ornaments. Sunlight splashed on her long, blonde tresses, spinning them to gold.
She sat her seat straight and yet relaxed. If her dress and the horse’s rich caparison hadn’t told him, he would have recognized she was a royal just by her carriage and dress. That she would be traveling without knights and outriders still puzzled him. Did some enchantment protect her?
A silence had settled over the meadow at her appearance. The buzzing of bees and the calls of birds quieted. The breeze died away. It was as if the entire meadow and its creatures held her fresh beauty in awe.
Resting an arm on the pommel, he felt for the first time the fine tremors in the horse beneath him. Here was another puzzle—even in battle his warhorse had never trembled. Rodick didn’t know why he did so now. If he’d smelled wild boar or some other menacing creature, Xertan would’ve bolted into the clearing. Instead, he obeyed his master’s commands to remain still, but trembled as if in fear.
It was odd. But there was always something odd in this forest. If there’d truly been danger, Rodick thought he’d have sensed it.
Enthralled, he watched as the princess’s horse picked its unhurried way on the path paralleling a stream that ran through the meadow. Periodically, the vision of loveliness looked up, seeming to search for something, but the cerulean sky remained empty, as if the sun refused obscurity while she rode. Other than that occasional watchfulness, it was obvious she wasn’t in flight from anyone or anything. Nor did she exhibit fear. Instead, she seemed content to meander in the lush meadow among the flowers that grew near the gurgling water.
Without warning, Xertan turned and carried Rodick back into the forest. By the time Rodick had pulled him up and around again, the young woman had vanished. A fine, cotton candy mist drifted in to fill the void with sweet mystery—
Buy Kindle http://www.amazon.com/How-Seduce-Knight-Dee-Palmer-ebook/dp/B00LCHJGZU
Dee Ann Palmer http://deeannpalmer.com