In this excerpt the werewolf, Gabriel, has just been reunited with his long-lost uncle the king. Unfortunately, his uncle doesn’t who Gabriel is, and so Gabriel is forced to pretend to be an ordinary wolf until such time as his curse is broken. This is part of his first day back in the castle after the knights and pages have finished sparring practice:
The wolf went to roughhouse with some of the young pages, but he made sure to keep both his claws and his fangs in line.
After a rather pleasant row, the lads were ushered away by one of the trainers. Gratefully, the man gave the wolf a head pat and a smile in thanks. In his earlier days on the training field, when the wolf had been a knight, keeping the young pages in line could weary him near to the bone.
Although, as a younger knight, he had always managed to dodge his more onerous duties, always been able to find someone else whom he could charm or bribe into taking them on for him. He regretted that now. Corralling the restless pages, wrestling with them, playing with them, had been quite fun, though his body ached horribly now. I wonder what else did I miss while I was busy being an arrogant young lordling?
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Lady Kathryn’s father sends her to court to find a husband, but being penniless and disinterested doesn’t bode well for her success. Bored by the petty intrigues of court, her frustration and loneliness are eased when the king charges her with the care of his newest acquisition: a wolf he and his hunters have recently captured. What the king doesn’t realize is his remarkable pet was once Gabriel, his favorite knight, cursed into wolf form by an unfaithful wife.
The beast’s too-knowing eyes and the way he understands and responds to her every utterance convince Kathryn he is more than what he seems. Resolving to restore him, she doesn’t count on the greatest obstacle being Gabriel himself. The longer he stays in wolf form as a captive of the court, the harder it becomes for him to remember his humanity and to fight his wolfish urges to maim and kill.
Only Kathryn’s affection and determination stand between Gabriel the wolf and Gabriel the man. But when the one who betrayed him returns to court, will Kathryn’s love be enough to keep Gabriel from exacting a brutish revenge that will condemn the wolf to death?
Hope you enjoyed the snippet above, and don’t forget to check out all the other 8 sentence excerpts this week.