Smoke and Fire

By: Donna Grant

PROLOGUE

Glasgow, Scotland

December

A loud sigh escaped Kinsey as she read the e-mail a second time. Rain splashed on the window of her cottage, but she didn’t hear it. Her mind wasn’t focusing on her new job assignment, which would take her to Dreagan Industries.

She should be ecstatic to get such a client. Normally she would be. If she could concentrate.

No, all she could think of was one thing—Ryder.

She set aside her laptop and stared at the wall. Kinsey was by turns numb, angry, and afraid. Though she wasn’t sure if those feelings were directed at Ryder … or herself.

The first time she’d met him, she instinctively knew he was going to change her life. And he had. Drastically. For those precious months were the happiest of her life.

Then he’d left Glasgow with a confusing—and brief—letter telling her it was over. It took her years to get over him.

Just when she thought she’d put Ryder in her past for good, she saw him again.

Kinsey squeezed her eyes closed at the memory. She couldn’t think of that night. It was too horrific, too shocking. Her world had been turned on its side in a split second.

Others didn’t seem to notice, or didn’t care. But she still struggled to catch her footing at what happened.

She gave herself a mental shake as she opened her eyes. No amount of thinking about Ryder was going to solve the issues at hand. They would never get resolved, because she planned to never see him again.

With a push off the cushion, Kinsey rose and walked to her room. She pulled out her overnight bag and began to pack. She was due at Dreagan by noon tomorrow.

Normally, she’d be thrilled at being personally requested to do a job with such a big corporation, but Kinsey’s head hadn’t been in her work since that awful night a month ago when her city burned and crazies with red eyes and black and silver hair raced through the streets of Glasgow.

She zipped up her bag and began to gather her makeup and toiletries. The job at Dreagan was pretty big. Then again, she’d proven herself time and again by being the best hacker at Kyvor.

With as large a corporation as Dreagan was, Kinsey suspected it would take her a few days to get through everything, which was why she was packing. But she would get it done—because that’s what she always did.

Her personal life might be down the drain, but her professional life was on the way to the top.





CHAPTER ONE

Dreagan

Ryder reached for another strawberry jelly–filled donut from the box and sank his teeth into the pastry. He moaned in ecstasy at his favorite snack.

“You’ve got powder on your lips,” said Dmitri from the doorway.

Ryder grinned and kept chewing as he winked at his fellow Dragon King from over the four rows of monitors that ran in a large semicircle around him.

Dmitri chuckled as he came around the screens and grabbed one of the chairs pushed against the table where Ryder worked. Dmitri pulled the chair toward him and sat, his bright blue eyes directed at Ryder. “Anything new?”

“Nay,” Ryder said and took another bite. He didn’t need to ask what Dmitri was referring to with the war going on between the Dark Fae.

Dmitri blew out a breath and ran a hand through his short brown hair. “The Dark are suddenly no’ interested in Dreagan? Tell me you doona find that odd.”

“I find it exceedingly peculiar. But at the same time, I’m glad we doona have to worry about them right now with MI5 crawling around the estate.”

Again, thanks to the Dark Fae releasing the video they shot of the Dragon Kings shifting into their true forms and fighting the Dark.

No sooner had the words left Ryder’s mouth than the camera near the gift shop of the distillery picked up two MI5 agents patrolling the area. As if they would find clues of dragons while looking among the flora and fauna.

Ryder shook his head at them. MI5 were so intent on making a discovery that there really were dragons that they were acting like idiots in order to do it.

It’d been almost two months with the mortals on the sixty-thousand-acre property, and Ryder hated it. Every time he saw them it was a reminder of what the Dark Fae had done to the Dragon Kings’ world.

Every day Ryder spent hours taking down the videos that kept popping up, showing them in their true form as dragons. Now the entire world was obsessed with dragons. And not necessarily all in a good way—MI5 was a prime example of that.

How ironic, since it was because of the humans that the Dragon Kings sent all the dragons to another realm thousands of years ago.

“This willna end anytime soon,” Dmitri said in a voice laced with anger as he watched the MI5 agents on the monitor.

Ryder made a sound at the back of his throat. “With every video of us fighting the Dark that night that I take down off the Internet, a hundred more pop up.”

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