Blue Waters Run Deep

by Danielle Summers

A pampered prince. An independent-minded rebel. Forbidden love at a time of war.

Spoiled Prince Amyar wants to see the world beyond the palace walls, but his trip to Tanshar to negotiate with the rebels goes horribly wrong. His only hope for survival and thwarting a coup is a sexy rebel fighter who has no love for the prince’s family.

Rouden wants independence from the royal family that has ruled his homeland of Tanshar for generations. He’s a former harem boy who came home to be with his family and find true love. He’s totally devoted to the rebel cause, but he goes on the run with Prince Amyar when the movement turns out to not be all it seems.

While the battle rages, Prince Amyar and Rouden may have to sacrifice everything to do the right thing and be together.

This is the third book in the Tales of the Thasali Harem series, but each book can stand alone. This gay erotic science fiction story includes graphic sex and is intended for adults only.

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Excerpt:

Now he would make a nice piece for bed tonight.

The young man who had caught the attention of Amyar, seventh son of the Thasali royal family, had a lean build and hair an unusual yet gorgeous shade of red. Amyar had initially only come to the harem compound to see his former tutor Haerek Chadan. Sitting in on the auditions, featuring a parade of stunning young men from the royal harem, for the upcoming annual Feast of Angry Angels concert was an unexpected bonus.

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The concert rotated among the royal families of the planet Oranto, and this year would be hosted by the Thasali royal household. It wouldn’t be as big a party as the Matriarch’s jubilee celebrations of a year ago, but the heads of other royal households would be there. It would be followed by an elaborate banquet. Although it was meant to be a purely social occasion, politics always made an appearance. Amyar wondered if the Matriarch, his mother, had been eager to host this year because of the threat of unrest in Tanshar, one of the Thasali territorial possessions.

“What do you think of him, my prince?” Mekko leaned close to Amyar. Their knees touched.

The prince shifted in his chair to move his knee away. Mekko, the harem’s music master, had always been nervy, even with members of the royal family. Amyar wondered if Mekko had ever attempted to be so forward with one of his older, and therefore more powerful, brothers. Out of the corner of his eye, Amyar saw Chadan glance at Mekko with distaste. Amyar smiled inwardly.

Still overprotective.

“He sings and plays well, Mekko,” said Amyar. “I’m sure he’ll be fine.”

“My prince,” Mekko said, “you know that’s not what I meant.”

“I do, but there are few with whom I’d share such a confidence.” Amyar regarded Mekko with amusement, wondering how the brash music master would respond. He wasn’t the heir to the throne, but he was still due the deference anyone of royal blood would expect.

Mekko bowed his head slightly, seemingly chastened by Amyar’s rebuke, and shifted his attention back to the red-headed young man. The music master had a habit of becoming overly familiar with the royals. It was only his brilliance as a musician and teacher that kept him employed in the harem.

Truth was, Amyar, who sat between Mekko and Chadan, hadn’t listened all that carefully to the young man. He seemed a serious sort. He was shorter than many of the other young men but had broad shoulders along with a muscular chest and abdomen, covered with fine pale red hairs. He had a strong presence. Amyar assumed the young man could perform even the simplest music and people would pay attention to him. He knew Chadan and Mekko were great teachers, so anyone they chose to perform in the concert would be the best.

Pulling his mane of long dark hair flecked with gray back away from his face, Chadan said, “The boy was raw when he came here, but Mekko has done well molding and seasoning him. How he found the time to do it with all his other … activities, I don’t know.”

Mekko laughed. “My dedication to the boys and the harem is boundless, Haerek. You know that.”

“Your dedication can go too far sometimes,” Chadan said.

Mekko did not respond, although his smile never dimmed. He tried to catch Amyar’s eye, but the prince would not look directly at him. Mekko returned his attention to the young man in front of them. Mekko motioned for him to take his leave.

The young man left the stage, and Amyar looked around. Although it had been several years since Chadan had been his tutor, it was clear that Chadan’s exasperation with Mekko was as strong as ever.

Amyar nodded to Costa, one of his older brothers, who had walked in and sat down on the other side of Mekko. There were two more boys after the charismatic redhead to end the auditions. Amyar knew Costa wasn’t interested in anything related to the concert. Music had never been his thing. Information and politics were more his style, and he did not disappoint.

“Guess what’s happened?” Costa said, a conspiratorial grin on his face.

“Just tell me.” Amyar didn’t like being made to guess or play the games Costa liked to play.

Costa pouted in a mocking sort of way. “As usual, you’re no fun, little brother.” He looked around to make sure none of the harem boys who were bustling out of the room could hear him.

Amyar was mildly entertained by his brother’s furtiveness, but he refrained from teasing him about it. Costa was prickly and occasionally vengeful.

“Those Tansharian clowns have voted for independence,” Costa revealed at last.

Amyar frowned. “How can they do that? Tanshar belongs to us.”

“Of course it does. It’s just a tactic, but it opens up some possibilities for us. Maybe now we can use this act of disobedience to bring them to heel once and for all.” Costa sat back, looking very satisfied. “No one rebels against Thasali without paying a high price.”

Costa was only a year older than Amyar. They had always been close, but lately Amyar had been shocked by Costa’s ambition. Amyar had always known that, as a younger son of the Matriarch, he wouldn’t inherit the power and wealth that his eldest brother, Baboye, would. He and his other brothers would certainly be wealthy. There’d be money, of course, and the Matriarch would give them royal assets, like land, as she saw fit. As long as they were princes, they’d never be poor. Costa had never shown much interest in politics before, so Amyar was surprised that he’d been following what had been going on in Tanshar so closely.

Amyar knew the most important thing about Tanshar that all the Thasali royals knew: that Tanshar’s huge freshwater lakes provided water to Resedna, the Thasali capital city, and the rest of their holdings. Other than that, he only had the vaguest knowledge of what was going on out there. He knew so little else about Tanshar that it might as well exist on the other side of Oranto or some other planet in the galaxy. He’d heard whispers about a rebellion. They wouldn’t be the first region to attempt to do so, but, like any other Thasali royal, he couldn’t understand why the Tansharians would want to rebel or what they hoped to gain by doing so.

“Independence? Is that what they really want?” Amyar asked.

Costa nodded and pounded his fist against his thigh. “They won’t know what to do with it if they get it, which they won’t. But who cares? We have the means to crush them into dust. They’ll back down once they understand that.”

A startling, though not unwelcome, thought came to Amyar. He wanted to go to Tanshar and see for himself what was going on there. He wanted to be part of the action. He wanted to make history. Lately, Amyar had felt a pull to leave the palace compound. It wasn’t a new feeling. Previously, he’d pushed the feeling away because he knew the chances of getting out of the palace on his own were slim. A royal was almost never alone. Ever since he could remember, he’d had governesses, tutors, and other palace staff all around him, ready to take care of his every need and protect him from any threat. But now was the right time. He was an adult. He could take care of himself if he wanted to. It was time for him to see the world that he and his family ruled along with other royal houses. He didn’t want to push that feeling away anymore. It felt thrilling. It was time, he thought, to push against the strictures placed on him. He excused himself and hurried to the palace library to learn all he could about Tanshar.

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About the Author

Danielle Summers is a dyke in an interracial same-sex marriage living in the Midwest. She loves well-drawn characters but hates stereotypes. She lives for a good plot. She wishes her characters were real.


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