Vision of Light [The Renegades 1]
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by Amanda Hilton
Category: Erotica/Erotic Romance/Romance
Description: Only one man can save her: Aislan Temple has been sold by her father into marriage to an evil man she despises. Her rescuer arrives in the form of an assassin who beheads her husband and takes her captive... Only one woman can redeem him: Lucien Demarcus, a royal assassin faithfully protecting the Crown and the Sorcery Circle, and Aislan, the wife of the traitor he was sent to kill, bond through dreams they have of each other. One look at her, Lucien defies his king and protects the beautiful and defenseless Aislan instead ... However, Aislan is not as helpless as she appears. She is a Predator who absorbs any sorcery power used against her. Aislan is destined to end the reign of the Sorcery Circle, and only one man can stop her--the man who loves her and has sacrificed everything to save her. Will he become her savior, or will he be her downfall? [Erotic Fantasy: Contains graphic sexual content and adult language.]
eBook Publisher: Siren-BookStrand, Inc./Erotic Romance, 2007 2007
eBookwise Release Date: April 2007
368 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [383 KB]
Reading time: 252-354 min.
"Hilton's medieval world is rich with sex, violence and magic. An imaginative plot unfolds against an atmospheric background. The hero and his lady spring to life as their relationship evolves from lust to love, and interesting supporting characters provide intrigue and suspense. A cliffhanger at the finale will have readers clamoring for book two. 4 Stars" --Romantic Times BOOKreviews
5 Kisses: "WOW! Amanda Hilton's The Renegades 1: Vision of Light is a wildly imaginative story that blows me away. The first several chapters are filled with rousing action, then the wonderful love story holds me captive all the way to the end. This awesome book has everything, action, intrigue, magic, unpredictable twists and turns, blazing hot sex, and most of all a gripping romance between two compelling and well developed lead characters. I love the way the dark alpha hero falls head over heels in love with the heroine and sacrifices everything to keep her alive. The eccentric heroine has a will of steel and turns out to be a genius in her own right and has a few exciting surprises in store. Also interesting are Lucien's relationships with his cruel courtesan mother and his sadistic father--two twisted parents who really know how to torment their son. Lucien's two cousins--the Calvacade brothers who are portrayed to swing either good or evil add a nice touch to the suspense. Amanda Hilton's Vision of Light is filled with action and is character driven. The love scenes are extremely well written and scorching hot, hot, hot. The book concludes with several clever shockers that give a taste of all the excitement to come. From the very first page, the story keeps me on the edge of my seat and pulls me right into the next chapter until I finished the entire book in one sitting. I recommend this outstanding book and can't wait for Book 2!"--Maggie, Two Lips Reviews
5 Flags: "Vision of Light is a riveting and fascinating fantasy with excellent world-building and intriguing paranormal elements. Amanda Hilton demonstrates a rare imaginative gift and brings this world truly to life with vivid description and characters delineated in depth. Both hero and heroine are strong-willed and independent, with their separate goals and dreams, yet the two have been bonded in spirit for many years and must each follow their destiny as one entity. Vision of Light is a winner and promises to be only the first in an excellent and exciting fantasy series, The Renegades."--Annie, Euro-Reviews
4.5 Hearts: "Vision of Light is a wonderfully creative fantasy adventure of epic proportions. It takes the readers on an exciting journey of discovery filled with magic and danger. Readers will thrill as two amazing characters battle with shape shifters and enchanted weapons. Action and surprises are around every corner. With no way of knowing what will happen next, readers will be drawn in and held captive till the very end. Aislan's powers will amaze and the prophecy about her will make readers wonder. She touches the heart of the readers with her innocence. Lucien is a man tormented. He throws everything away to save a woman. These two characters have an immediate attraction. They cannot deny what their bodies desire. Many very sensual scenes occur as the two give in to the passion as it spills between them. Together they burn with an inner fire that requires the other to exhaust. She is his light, he is her dark, and together they balance each other. They need each other to feel whole. Readers will find themselves anxiously awaiting the next exciting installment in their story. For lovers of fantasy, I highly recommend readers look for Vision of Light, the first book in The Renegades series by Amanda Hilton."--Anita, The Romance Studio
"Vision of Light will take readers on a journey where the characters of Lucien and Aislan battle many [magical] creatures to save themselves, and their burgeoning attraction. Aislan's innocence is wonderfully juxtaposed with Lucien's battle weary character. Each character's inner struggle in trying to come to terms with who they really are and what they want from life is touching. Vision of Light is wonderfully written, and lovers of fantasy will most definitely enjoy the read. I personally look forward to the next book in the series."-Vanessa Costa, Romance Reviews Today
4 Stars: "Vision of Light is the first part of Amanda Hilton's new Renegade series. I was pleased to find myself in a medieval time period with sorcerers, knights, and damsels in distress. Ms. Hilton created a very special group of characters that allowed you to pick your favorite hero and villain. Lucien first appears as a cold hearted assassin for the Crown and the Sorcery Circle intent on fulfilling the assassination of Lord Hayton and Lady Aislan Temple by using brute strength and sorcery. Aislan is presented as our damsel in distress doing everything she can to preserve her life. As Lucien and Aislan embark on a journey, we are able to see that Lucien isn't as cold as he first appeared to be and Aislan is definitely not in distress. I enjoyed the nuances that Ms. Hilton gave to the primary and secondary characters in the story. The plot flowed smoothly. While we were left with a cliff hanger towards the end, I found that I wasn't disappointed and the anticipation just makes the story that much sweeter. The love Lucien and Aislan shared was extremely sensual and well written. This is the first story I have read from Ms. Hilton and it will not be my last."--LT Blue, Just Erotic Romance Reviews
4 Angels: "Fantasy, adventure, and romance can all be found within the realm of Vision of Light. Aislan has a certain innocence about her that draws in the reader with all her ranges of emotion. Lucien and Aislan share a deepening love that spills over into the storyline. He is troubled by his sense of loyalty to the king and his devotion to Aislan, and his expressions could be felt by this reader. Ms. Hilton balances out a delightful read with magic, danger and intrigue. She makes her characters believable while delivering a captivating read. Now I have to read Book 2."--Linda L., Fallen Angel Reviews
Lucien struggled to gather his composure. No woman had ever been able to tear him apart as she could. He needed to get away from her before he begged for forgiveness for something beyond reason. "I hear you, Mother. We shall discuss it no more. Now, I must excuse myself."
"Lucien, do not walk away while I still speak to you!"
The wine clouding his mind made it possible for him to ignore his mother. He made his way to the labyrinth and then came to a sudden stop, not believing his eyes. Aislan and Jaden emerged from the maze and headed in his direction.
He did not need further betrayal from the woman he loved. Loved! Lucien caught himself, balking. God in heaven!
"Lucien!" Aislan pouted. Her beautiful face flushed pink, her dark blue eyes flashing in excitement as she grabbed onto Jaden's arm, teetering on her feet.
"Lucien!" his mother shouted as she barred his path.
"What the fuck have you done to her?" Lucien was ready to give Jaden a good thrashing.
"How dare you be vulgar in front of me?" The duchess slapped him hard across the face. He touched his stinging cheek in disbelief, more in shock than in pain.
"How dare you slap him, you old witch!" Aislan shrieked before she turned to Lucien. "So 'tis what you left me and crawled back to so eagerly, this old woman! You insufferable wretch!"
Lucien had believed Aislan said whatever she thought and expressed whatever she felt only with him because she knew she had him wrapped around her finger. Apparently, she behaved in the same infuriating manner with everyone else. Still in a snit, she stormed back through the maze of flowers and thick hedges.
Jaden caught him by the arm before he could run after Aislan. "How now, calm down, old man."
"Damn you." He knocked away the detaining hand. "How could you bring her here and upset her? How dare you get her drunk!"
Jaden looked confounded. "She insisted on meeting the duchess. I did not realize she took her for someone else. She kept drinking. I stopped her when I realized she was more angry with you and not simply entertaining me."
Lucien did not believe Jaden's exaggerated innocence. The wily, ingratiating bastard's carefully worded barb was meant to rile him. Jaden and Aislan--the two of them deserved each other! "I have not finished with you yet," he threatened. Before he could go after Aislan, his mother grabbed him by the arm.
"And neither have I finished with you! You owe me an apology. I'll not have you run out on me like the last time and disappear for another half year."
Lucien glared at her. "'Twas not my choice to disappear, madam."
"Once Jaden rescued your worthless hide, you could have at least come back and shown your respect!" She dismissed his imprisonment as if he had taken a leisure journey.
"It touches me profoundly that you care after all these years. I thank you, dearest, beloved Mother. I must now bid you good eve."
He ignored both his mother and his cousin gaping at him. Lucien's concentration focused solely on Aislan. With her eidetic memory, she would navigate the labyrinth system easily. The vultures awaited and would descend upon her as soon as she stepped outside Calvacade.
Damn the impossible, stubborn wench for her total disregard of the danger she was in, he raged as he rushed after her.
* * * *
Aislan did not run back to Lilypad. She would walk to Victania if she had to. The moonlight lit her way as she wove through the vegetation. She slowed down deliberately and felt immense gratification when Lucien caught up with her.
"What is wrong with you?" he demanded.
"Oh, go back to your woman!" She turned and smacked him on the chest.
"Please, spare me. 'Twas my mother."
The fight went out of her immediately. "Oh!" Aislan pressed her hands against her cheeks. "Oh--my--goodness! Oh, 'tis not good!"
"No, not too good."
"Oh. Oh, my. I am sorry."
"You do not want to make her an enemy."
"'Tis not like she would have anything to do with me anyway."
"True." He took her by the wrist and walked her back to Lilypad.
Because of her blurry vision, Aislan wanted to go to sleep. Once inside Lilypad, he went to the bed and pulled down the cover, flipping it to the end of the bed. Aislan tugged at her dress and started unlacing.
"Your libido overworking with too many men around?" he asked cruelly.
Aislan stopped dead, feeling as if he had punched her in the stomach. Where had that come from? He had been receptive prior to the arrival of the maids when she was filthy. Now that she had cleaned up and smelled as fresh as a flower, he decided to revert to abstinence. How could it be so difficult to seduce a man whose sexual tastes bordered on everything forbidden, or had he already relieved himself with Ruby?
"I am not the degenerate one, you wretch," she declared, then calmed down again. She did not want to argue with him. She only wanted him to hold her and make love to her again, so she reached for him and slid her arms about his waist. "Lucien--"
"I told you, you impossible wench, no more sex. You have your hands. Work your frustration off yourself." He walked away.
"Oh! You--you hypocrite! And on top of it, as crude as ever!"
He turned back. "Crude? What is crude about masturbation?"
"You should not talk that way." Though no stranger to masturbation, one should not talk about such subject.
"Surely you jest! Your modesty is ludicrous at this point."
"You despicable bastard!"
For some reason, that enraged him. He walked towards her and she backed away from the menace in his expression.
"Bastard?" he gritted through his teeth. "Do you know what crudity is? Let me show you."
Grabbing her by the arm, he propelled her backward until she plopped on the bed on her back. He pulled up her skirt and pushed aside her undergarments until her crotch lay bare. Excited he had finally touched her, Aislan was not alarmed by his cold determination. He would warm up to her quickly and become affectionate. He always did. Taking her hand, he pressed her palm between her legs, rubbing it against her clit.
"Lucien!" She gasped, trying to sit up, but he placed a hand against her breasts to stop her from sitting up while he kept a steady pressure against her clit. Despite the ignominious position, tension built in the bundle of nerves until she writhed. As she neared climax, he stopped suddenly.
"Make yourself come," he ordered harshly. "Show me."
She needed tender, loving care, and he was not relenting.
"Lucien, I--I..." Blinded by tears, she could not see his face.
He went still and released her immediately.
"Aislan..." She heard the torment in his voice. In the next moment, he lifted her into a sitting position. Kneeling at her feet, he pressed his face against her neck. "Aislan, my darling. Forgive me. Forgive me."
She was shocked to feel wetness against her throat.
"I am the bastard you called me. I have nothing decent left in me, nothing enduring to offer you."
"Lucien." Aislan wept, too, from hearing the misery and pain in his voice. "Lucien, darling. I am sorry."
He drew in several ragged breaths before he pulled back and she gently touched his wet cheeks.
"You did nothing wrong." He kissed her palm. "You are sweet and caring, and so lovable. My abominable behavior--I drank too much. I cannot hold my wine too well, but 'tis no excuse to take my frustration out on you. Forgive me."
"There is nothing to forgive," she said softly, grabbing his arm to prevent him from getting up as she lifted her face for his kiss. "Lucien, darling, make love to me."
* * * *
Lucien took his time kissing her, exploring her mouth thoroughly, tasting her. His hand went under Aislan's skirt to palm her mons and pluck at her clit carefully. He applied enough pressure and alternated between rolling it and fingering the silken heat of her vaginal walls until she climaxed. Her cum flowed onto his hand. After pulling her dress over her head, he went down between her legs.
God in heaven, he should not be making love to her. He should not be in love with her. What he did was wrong. Lucien struggled trying to control his raging lust, shaking with need and losing the fight with himself. Spreading her legs, he fastened his mouth to her pussy to drink her nectar. Rubbing his mouth and nose in the pink folds, he lost himself in her womanly scent as he sucked her. She thrashed about as he played with her clit until she came, writhing and quivering.
When she had calmed down, Aislan smoothed his hair gently, and Lucien dragged himself up to stretch alongside her. Putting his arms around her to hold her, he shook from the effort of controlling his hands to stay put and not rip his braes off.
"Darling Lucien." She smoothed his hair behind his ear. "What is it? Is it your mother? Did she upset you?"
He groaned. "Aislan, please do not bring up my mother now," although that did it, helping him regain his control. His ardor cooling, Lucien turned over onto his back and placed his arm over his eyes.
He nearly jumped out of his skin when she pressed her face against his crotch and rubbed her cheek along his erection until he was ready to come without having to be inside her.
She unfastened his braes. He should stop her, but he was too weak to move. Taking his cock in hand, she wrapped her mouth around the head and started sucking.
"God forbid!" he groaned as she kissed the tip several times, smacking her lips loudly as she rained kisses up and down his shaft. He should not let her do this. He needed to stop her before this could go any further.
"Put it in your mouth," he coaxed and she sucked him back in. "Good..." Heaven. He concentrated on the feel of her hot mouth tugging at the crown. "Use your tongue." He groaned again when she probed the slit before circling her tongue around and around the head. She licked him up and down. Taking her hand, he wrapped it around his cock. "Darling, hold firmly. Now, move like this."
Working her hand, she sucked hard at the head, then she tried to take as much of him into her mouth, pushing it deeper in. She pulled back when he pressed against the back of her throat. Easing up, he pulled away, but she moved forward and sucked him back in. Why was she trying so hard to please him?
Why would he even question her decision to suck him?
"Relax, my sweet angel." Sitting up, he moved to the edge of the bed while she knelt at his feet. "Take a few deep breaths. Relax your throat." Holding the back of her head, he tilted her face back and talked her through her first time doing this.
Eager to please, she followed his lead. He thrust his cock slowly past her tonsils and down the back of her throat, adjusting her head, gauging her receptiveness before moving further. He pulled out when he felt her throat tighten. Immediately, she laved him with her tongue while she gasped for breaths.
Taking her hand, he rubbed her palm against his balls, showing her how to cup and squeeze them. To his pleasure, she was generous with her tongue, showing no reservation as she plied it thoroughly over his balls. She kissed and sucked each globe, licking until he became mindless with the pleasure.
He took her hand and wrapped it about the base of his cock again. "Darling, that feels good. Wonderful. My beautiful Aislan." Gently, he brushed a glorious curl of her gold hair off her cheek and then weaved his fingers into the silken strands, while he enjoyed her wet mouth and caressing hands. She took him back into her mouth. Pumping in and out of her as gently as he could, he inserted just an inch more down her throat every time he thrust, all the while watching her lovely face to gauge her reaction. She had relaxed enough until he was nearly to the hilt. He sensed her struggle to take all of him, to keep him completely entrenched longer. He tried to pull back, but she sucked him back down. Fire raged through his blood and his testicles tightened.
"Aislan, I must come. Relax your throat, darling. Drink all of me."
She held the head firm and deep in her throat, and when he ejaculated, he shuddered in ecstasy, his cock jerking as he filled her with hot cum. She swallowed every bit of it until he was spent. When she slowly released him, she licked every drop that escaped around her lips and on his cock.
"Aislan, my sweet Aislan." Pulling her into his arms, he leisurely kissed her enchanting mouth.
"Lucien," she said his name and it sounded like music. He lay down, pulling her on top of him. "I need you," she whispered. "Please. Make love to me. I need you so."
He could not resist her anymore. Propelling her onto her back, Lucien mounted her and plunged to the hilt into her wet passage. There was no other heaven for him. He thrust slowly at first deep within her sweet body, mindful not to crush her with his weight, but she thrashed about, her legs wrapping about his ass.
"Harder. Harder, please." She bucked, her eyes clenching tight as her lissome body shook.