Home > Midnight Soul (Fantasyland #5)(5)

Midnight Soul (Fantasyland #5)(5)
Author: Kristen Ashley

But I enjoyed it.

He controlled his joviality but didn’t stop smiling or watching me as he asked, “What do you call dudes here?”

“Dudes?” I responded to his query with a query.

“Men,” he explained, still smiling. “Guys.”

“We call them men or gentlemen.”

“No, I mean endearments or slang.”

“I, personally, do not engage in uttering slang.”

He studied me like I was a highly entertaining jester who’d come to court before he inquired, “Okay, what do you call a man you’re in with?”

“In with?”

“Who means something to you. Your guy. Your man,” he stated.

I looked to the fire again, feeling my face freeze.

The instant I did, he bit off, “Fuck.” There was a slight pause before, “Babe…Franka, Tor told me about the shit that went down…fuck.” I felt strong fingers curl around my wrist, a wrist I was resting on the arm of the chair, before he finished, “That was stupid. I’m so sorry.”

With a delicate twist, I freed myself from his touch, lifted my wineglass to my lips, and before I took a sip I murmured, “It’s nothing.”


This odd word made my gaze move back to him.

“I beg your pardon?” I snapped.

“Bullshit,” he repeated.

“I don’t understand this word.”

Though I had a feeling I did.

There was no smile on his face. No humor in his eyes. He was regarding me closely again, but this time I was prepared and didn’t shift in my seat.

“You’re full of it,” he explained. “You’re not giving me the entire truth. You’re saying something to get past something you don’t want to be talking about.”

“And if I did this, considering what we both know I’m moving us past, it’s customary to allow the awkward moment to pass.”

He leaned slightly toward me. “You’re in here all alone, drinkin’ wine by yourself, lookin’ like the world just ended. And I get why you’d feel that way. I don’t understand, when all the others are so tight, why you aren’t tight with them. But that’s not my business. All I know is, you put your ass on the line today to save four women’s lives and the life of every being in this universe. It took courage to do that, babe. You suffered a big loss losing your man and I’m sorry for that. But at least for tonight you should be proud of what you did for your country, for four good women and the men who love them, for the memory of the man you lost. It’s time to celebrate. The good side won and you,” he pointed a finger at me (insufferably rude!), “were a part of that.”

Again, on the tip of my tongue, words hovered to share precisely, in a calculated way, how I knew he had celebrated with Circe.

Those words did not drop off my tongue.

They vanished completely as I simply turned my attention back to the fire.

“And that kinda situation does not say wine,” he carried on. “It says whiskey, vodka, or better yet, tequila.”

I could not argue with that (regardless of the fact I had no idea what tequila was).

“To that, I heartily agree,” I declared, deigning again to glance at him and wishing I hadn’t, for his smile had returned, making me further wish I could snatch my words back.

“I’ll go find something,” he announced, putting his hands to the arms of the chair in order to heft his big frame out of it, and I felt my brows draw together as, once he was up, it seemed he was moving toward the door.

“You simply have to pull the cord and demand it of a servant,” I explained.

He was now standing, staring down at me, appearing bemused.

By the powers of Adele, if she reigned in his realm, she gave him more than his fair share of everything.

He even looked delectable bemused!

I really had to leave as quickly as I could without giving anything away.

“Uh…what?” he asked.

I gestured indolently with a hand to the cord in the corner of the room. “Pull the cord. A bell sounds…” I didn’t have the information of where it sounded as I didn’t concern myself with such matters, and continued with, “somewhere. A servant comes. We tell him we want whiskey. He brings it.”

His lips quirked.

I drew in an annoyed breath for that was delectable too.

“Right,” he muttered and began to stride toward the cord.

I twisted in my chair and called to his back, “When they arrive, share with them more fuel needs to be added to the fire.”

He stopped and turned back to me while I was speaking.

When I was done, he looked to the fire and then back to me.

“Babe, there’s a pile of logs right there,” he stated.

“Indeed, there are,” I agreed, though I hadn’t concerned myself with that matter either and had no idea if he spoke truth.

“So I can put more fuel on the fire.”

By Adele, he again looked amused.

I needed to find a way to exit this situation with all due haste.

“If you wish to dirty your hands…” I left it at that but added a slight shrug.

He shook his head, his mouth again quirking, and he turned back to the cord.


He would order whisky.

I would imbibe a bit (or perhaps more than a bit). Then I’d find a way to purloin the extra bottle of wine and the glass and remove myself to my rooms.

This was my plan.

As Franka Drakkar of the House of Drakkar, I was very good with plans, making them and executing them to their fullest.

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