Prince Richard Sinclair is his brother’s right-hand-man and go-to guy, who excels as the Emperor’s Fireman because he can’t deal with his personal life. He only plays the Imperial Bad Boy because that’s what makes the dukes respect him, despite his age, intelligence, education, and birthright. Delightfully intrigued by Lady Meredith Lauder, his virtual Cinderella, he rescues her from her burdensome family life at the first opportunity.
Scarred by ridicule and neglect, Merry gleefully abandons her family, but she feels she has to work at the Imperial Palace to compensate for Richard’s generosity. Even as he entices her to his bed, she believes she’s being true to her core principles, to never be dependent upon a man, and to pursue a relationship of equals.
But when the Emperor disappears, they realize just how fragile their world really is, both personally and politically. Richard desperately throws himself into governing as Imperial Steward while demanding that everyone search for Matthieu. And Merry plays the part of the ‘supportive girlfriend’ in his hour of need… until two men jeopardize the emotional balance they’ve gained in their lives.
How can Prince Richard deal with the frightful political situation without losing his lover? Will his family tear him and Merry apart, or will hers? Or will it be his anger issues, so like her dad’s?