Books & Broadswords: Epilogue

Part of the serial story Books & Broadswords
Books & Broadswords, Epilogue, on a purple background of dragon scales, with a crest of swords crossed behind an open book.

We’ve made it to the end! Thank you all so much for hanging out with me for the last few weeks as Feora and Ansel’s story unfolded. It was a delight reading all of your comments!

Thanks to my baby bro for the idea and for telling me it was “fucking awesome!!!!” when you read it. More authors need a cheerleader like you! 💕

I paced out my anxiety on top of the castle’s keep. I did not need to look at the calendar to know the importance of today’s date. It had been one year, six months, and ten days since I’d first met Ansel, and exactly one year since I’d offered to make him my mate.

Time might pass differently for dragons, but that didn’t mean we couldn’t track it precisely when the mood suited us.

Ansel had often pestered me in the early days to mate him immediately, but he hadn’t mentioned it in months, and I secretly wondered if he’d changed his mind. I was bracing for rejection even as I hoped for acceptance.

The last year had been one of the happiest in my long life.

Our store was flourishing, and if the townsfolk had any suspicions about my true nature, they kept them to themselves, especially since the crime rate had dropped dramatically since I’d arrived.

Ansel’s family was delightful, and they welcomed me with open arms.

I still stole the king’s gold with clockwork regularity, but since Ansel bought me as many books as I could ever want, I melted the royal marks and recast them into dragon coins that I gave to those who needed the help.

It infuriated the king, but after several of his knights had met untimely ends while trying to punish people for using the new coins, he’d grudgingly relented. Or perhaps it had been my visit to his castle in my true form. Either way, dragon marks were now considered legal tender, and many considered them lucky.

Even Percy had settled enough that my true form no longer spooked him, and he allowed me to ride with Ansel with only a snort or two of complaint.

The warhorse was grazing on my garden while the former knight worked on some project or other. I should be helping him, but it’d been all I could do to act natural through breakfast. I wouldn’t pressure him, no matter how much I wanted to.

He would decide when he was ready, or he wouldn’t, and I would respect his decision either way.

Even if it killed me, which it might.

I was a breath away from transforming and taking my nerves out on any hapless bandits I could find when I heard footsteps.

Ansel crested the stairs with a smile. “There you are. Enjoying the sun?”

I nodded, my heart in my throat. I didn’t know how he became even more gorgeous every time I saw him, but I suspected it was magic.

He crossed the roof with a soft look on his face. “You think I forgot.”

“Forgot what?” I tried, but my voice came out hoarse.

He lifted my hand and brushed a kiss across my knuckles. “You can’t fool me, Lady Dragon. I know you too well.” He slipped a golden band onto my ring finger. Books, broadswords, and dragon scales were delicately carved onto its surface. “I wanted to finish it before I asked,” he whispered. “Sorry I kept you waiting.”

I dragged my gaze away from the beautiful ring long enough to meet his eyes, fragile hope blossoming in my chest. “Ask what?”

“Marry me, Feora. Mate me. Make me yours, forever. It’s been a year. My feelings haven’t changed.”

“You’re sure?” I asked, even as magic roiled under my skin, desperate to bind him before he could change his mind.

His smile was brighter than the sun. “I’m sure. Make me yours.”

I closed my eyes and fought for control. “Now?” I pleaded.

“Yes. What do I—”

The rest of his sentence was lost as my magic exploded from me and wrapped us together, binding us with unbreakable bonds. He was mine. I roared my claim to the heavens.

Ansel kissed me, and my heart settled. His lips were warm and firm even as magic continued to whirl around us. “Finally,” he murmured against my skin.

I laughed in delight. I couldn’t have said it better myself.

And they lived happily ever after. 💕 I hope you’ve enjoyed this little short story as much as I enjoyed writing it, and if so, I’d love for you to share it with a friend!

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50 thoughts on “Books & Broadswords: Epilogue”

  1. Jessie thank you so very much. I have loved the story and seeing each chapter arrive in my emails has lifted my spirits.
    If ever you decide to write a book with Ansel and Feora I would buy it in a heartbeat. Xxxx

  2. Awww! If you made this short story into a book, I would buy it. 😁
    I wonder how many of the Book Devouring Horde has read these chapters? 🤔 We could be quietly infiltrating your blog, Jessie. 😶‍🌫️

    1. The BDH has definitely found another author we love. **munch** **munch** **munch** I’ve read and loved everything Jessie Mihalik has written. 😊

    2. Of course the BDH is here. Jessie is helping fill the gaps in our Inn-less Fridays. :-)

      As for quietly infiltrating . . . This is the BDH. Do we do anything quietly?

  3. Wonder-full HEA! If you ever decide to expand this into a book or a series of adventures, I will buy it immediately. Thank you ☺️

  4. This BDH person L O V E S this! (in addition to ALL of Jessie’s books) It’s nice to have different authors who’s books come out at different times from each other.

    Jessie I love your section on recommended authors! More authors need to set up a section like this. 😊

  5. I loved this story! Dragons are my favorite mythical creatures and the combination with a love of books made for a great twist I could relate to! Sweet romance. ♥️

  6. Thanks for the short story – I loved it.

    If you ever decide to do any merchandise, I would totally go for a t-shirt with the Books & Broadsword logo. It would fit right in with all my other (real) bookstore t-shirts…

  7. Thank you. It was the best kind of fairy tale.

    And, really, do think about offering it for sale. I’d love to have a copy I don’t feel as if I’m stealing. (I’ve been deleting the emails so I won’t be tempted to archive them…)

  8. Another BDH member here. I too would by an ebook of this too. Delightful story. I did get directed to you by HA. Just keep writing please.

  9. As a proud member of the BDH I’m happy to confirm that I’ll follow you from hereon too ….
    Thank you for the wonderful story which I’ be already shared with a friend in need of a happy distraction!

  10. Thank you. I managed to resist until the epilogue arrived in my inbox. Then I had the joy of reading such a well crafted and beautiful story. Thank you for this gift.

  11. I’d love to buy it in ebook form so it’s stored on my reader in one easy to read place. I’ve shared with a friend. HA initially directed me to your writing and I’ve enjoyed all your stories. Looking forward to the next book! Thanks jo

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