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Ava had no last name that she knew of. She didn’t know who her father was. Her mother died when she was born—she knew nothing about her history. All she had were questions that no one could answer. Her memories were like clipped versions of videos that showed her a few parts but never told her enough. She didn’t age like others. In fact, she wasn’t sure how old she really was.

Thirty years ago, she’d done something so horrific that she’d never told anyone. She’d killed the only person that had answers. Every moment since then had been spent trying not to do whatever it was she did again. She was some abomination with wings. Useless appendages that she couldn’t use and couldn’t fly with. She’d tried.

The group of women she lived with were like her and born in the time of the Gemini. She didn’t even know what that meant. They were her family, and each day, she spent watching over them and doing whatever was needed to ensure they were safe. Except for the one week of the year, she was compelled to go back to that place that caused her more misery with each passing year.

He had secrets. The kind that would get his powers blocked so he’d end up a decrepit old man with no purpose in any realm. He’d once sworn to protect a princess and had failed. When given a second chance, he swore to protect another princess. She was more than his charge. She was his friend. The secrets he kept from her would destroy her—and create a rift so wide in their realm that there would be no recovering from it.

Years before, he had made a promise, and now he wasn’t sure he could keep it. The one that could complete him was unaware that he existed and had the answers she sought. His people would never accept her, so he was stuck between his heart and his loyalty. If he confessed to her, he would have to explain to his queen and her daughter that he had failed them and there was no coming back from it once he did.

All he wanted, more than his next breath, was to tell her—everything.  

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