Double Keltic Triad: Book Three
To the Faerie Gentry of the Otherworld, the fairy wee folk are but a myth and legend. Until the fairy Korin falls in love with a hal-Gentry maid. Foced to bargain with an evil king to woo her, he risks discovery, and his life, to fulfill the conditions. Book Three of the Double Keltic Triad
Korin Goodfellow loves the Gentry maid, Nanceen. In order to woo her, Korin bargains with his evil king, who sets seemingly impossible tasks. The first? She must believe in him.
But the folk of Faerie, the Gentry, don't believe in the odd assortment of beings who make up the wee folk. And definitely not in fairies.
Nanceen doesn't know what she believes. Until Korin calls to her, then makes his way into her world, becoming a wingless man she can see, touch, believe in.
But will the rat king's conditions drive a wedge between them, or force Korin to confrontation, to battle, into risking his life for love?
Korin lay back. The leaf dipped with his movement as he reached to one side and snatched at the length of a nearby blade of grass. He tugged until a bit broke off, stuck the end in his mouth, and chewed thoughtfully. Floating high above him, clouds filled the clear sky. Their flat, gray color matched his mood. He sighed and turned to his side, propped his head on one hand and stretched his wings.
As much as he hated to admit it, the first of his king’s conditions would perhaps be the hardest to meet. It was the only clear requirement listed on the parchment. She must believe in him.
Korin tossed the shredded stem away. There had been a time long ago, even to the fairy, when both humans and the gentry readily believed in the smallest of the sidhe. Even after the human’s religious beliefs forced the gentry underground, then to the Otherworld, the diminutive fairy were honored, or at least remembered, with sweet honey cakes and fresh milk. Korin smacked his lips. It had been a long time since he’d tasted the creamy white ambrosia of milk.
Until humans began to blame the wee folk for their troubles. When aided by the priests, their beliefs in fairies disappeared. But how had the breach with the gentry occurred? Even the legends skirted the issue. There was no history to help him, and Korin was unsure how to proceed. Without Nanceen’s belief in him, fulfilling any of the other conditions would be useless.
Useless. That’s what he was. The niggling doubt became a surety. Somehow, the Fir Dhaerrig had manipulated him. But at what cost?
Korin flopped to his back, wincing as he folded an edge of one wing under him. He adjusted his position and covered his eyes with one forearm. There had to be a way to make Nanceen--no, he could not make her do anything. He would find a way to convince her of his reality. And the existence of his people. One word flashed through his mind. Over and over until the rapid flashes burned behind his closed eyelids. How?
A shadow covered him, cooling his skin. Cautious, he lifted his arm from his eyes and opened them. A face loomed over him. Startled, he scrambled to a sitting position and scooted back until he pressed against the plant stem.
“Hi, bu’fly man.”
The child’s whisper sent waves of relief over him. Occasionally there were children who saw fairies, until adults taught the belief out of them. Sadness followed the relief. If children could only retain their beliefs, perhaps the breach between races would be healed. And he wouldn’t be fighting to claim love from one of the gentry.
A chubby finger moved closer and he held still. Gently, the child touched the tip of one wing and giggled. “Pretty.”
“I thank you, child. How are you called?” At the confusion in her dark brown eyes, Korin asked, “What is your name?”
The rosebud mouth formed a silent ‘oh’. “I’m not supposed to talk to strangers.” She giggled again. The clear sound filled Korin with a strange hope. “Who’re you?”
“I am Korin, young mistress.” He rose, bowed deeply, then spread his wings to their fullest.
“Bu’fly man. Kor’n.”
Korin winced at the childish lisping of his name, but cast a brilliant smile to the engaging girl. “Kor-in, young mistress. Are you able to say Kor-in?”
“Kor’n.” Dark brows drew together as she concentrated in forming her mouth around the syllables of his name. “Kor-in.”
A deep chuckle rose from Korin. “You may call me bu’fly man if you wish.”
|art nouveau male fairy brooch by Sliver b3|
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