Mylo Kornel stood in fear hiding in the shadows and watching as the king comforted his consort. Truthfully he didn’t understand what was so wrong with the two men loving each other—at least they were loving somebody. He was sorry for his part in what was happening. He should never have agreed to put the damn plant in the bedchamber of the king and his consort.
He wasn’t quite sure what the significance was of the plant. At the time he’d wondered why the giver wanted to remain anonymous. The plant itself was beautiful. Why would something of such beauty put such fear in King Quinlan? Scratching the side of his face he wondered how he was going to explain his part in this whole mess. Even though he didn’t know who the original sender was, he could tell them who paid him to place the plant where he had. Mylo jumped when Cleric Saskia suddenly appeared beside him.
“You look troubled,” Saskia’s voice washed over Mylo in a way which soothed him. Being a cleric Saskia’s gift must be the ability to soothe the soul. It was deep and rich and felt like a blanket of warmth wrapped around him.
Mylo studied the cleric. The man’s dark blue eyes drew him in. their intenseness made him want to confide everything inside of him. Mylo’s gaze dropped to the cleric’s soft looking lips, and then he began to speak. “It was me. I put the plant in the king’s room.”
“Now why would you do that?” Saskia asked softly, one eyebrow rose in apparent curiosity.
Mylo shrugged, “I was paid to. I don’t see what the big fuss is. So what if someone wanted to give the king’s consort a pretty gift?”
Cleric Saskia’s face held a sad quality or so Mylo thought. “You don’t know the meaning of such a gift, do you?”
“No,” Mylo shook his head.
“Such a gift is an ill omen. They say to be given this particular gift means you’ve been warned a bounty has been placed upon your head.”
“Oh shyte,” Mylo groaned, “I didn’t know. I mean, if I had known I would never have done it.” It wasn’t until the king spoke that Mylo realised that cleric Saskia had led him to stand in front of the king. And probably his being thrown into the palace dungeons for his stupidity.
“I would like you to tell me who gave you the plant for my husband?” Quinlan could barely contain his rage. He wanted to lash out at somebody, and this man looked like a pretty good target.
“It was Ormand, Lord Dalziel’s son. He told me the plant was a gift from one of Consort Brayden’s friends from his past. I didn’t know what it meant until the cleric Saskia explained.”
“Did it not seem strange that Ormand didn’t want to deliver the gift himself?” Quin demanded. He rubbed soothing circles on Brayden’s back as his husband shuddered in his lap.
“I thought so at first, but then he told me you were a little upset with his father. He said Consort Brayden was holding him to blame for his father’s stupidity.” Mylo paled significantly. “Why am I always such an idiot?”
When Cleric Saskia placed his hand on the young man’s shoulder the man jumped in fright. “What is your name?”
“Mylo, my name is Mylo Kornel.” Mylo answered softly.
“Where do you come from, Mylo Kornel?” Brayden asked. “Just by looking at you even I can tell you’re not from Panthea.”
“No, Consort Brayden, I’m from the lower end of Darvish. My family are mainly sailors. My mother sent me here after she dreamed I would be needed here. My father on the other hand didn’t want me to come. Apparently he thinks my mother should stop interfering whenever she sees something.”
Surprise crossed cleric Saskia’s face, “Would your mother be Bryn Kornel; Mistress of the Keep?”
A true smile crossed Mylo’s face. “Yes, she’s my mother.”
“What is going on?” Brayden asked as he leaned back into Quinlan’s chest.
Cleric Saskia was the one to answer. “Bryn Kornel is a seer of great power. I met her years ago when I was but a child. She told me then that she would send my mate to me when I’d need them the most.”
Quin saw how Cleric Saskia let his gaze wander over Mylo. The gleam in his eyes was also a telling sign that young man was definitely Saskia’s type. Quin appraised Mylo; granted the man was muscular with large arms. The strong face let the world know Mylo was not a man to be messed with. Yes definitely Saskia’s type. Quin wondered if Mylo had the markings to prove he was Saskia’s intended mate. They had spent many an hour discussing the fated mate mark—as Quinlan had never heard of such a thing before. By the look in his friend’s eyes he knew Saskia was thinking along the same lines.
“Could you take off your shirt?” Cleric Saskia asked.
“What?” Mylo took a step away. His hands clenched in the front of his own shirt. “Why do you want me to take off my shirt?”
“Your mother told me there would be something on your upper body to would let me know you were the one fated to be my mate.”
“Oh,” Mylo nervously pulled his shirt over his head; wadding it into a ball in front of him as cleric Saskia stared at his naked torso.
“Well?” Quinlan asked
Cleric Saskia could only nod as his fingertips reached out and traced the pattern that ran down Mylo’s left arm from the base of his neck spiralling around to his inner wrist. It’s exactly as the seer predicted. Cleric Saskia cleared his throat, “He’s my mate.”