The Midnight Realm – Chronicles of the Stone Veil Read Online Sawyer Bennett

Categories Genre: Fantasy/Sci-fi, Paranormal, Romance, Suspense Tags Authors:

Total pages in book: 85
Estimated words: 81261 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 406(@200wpm)___ 325(@250wpm)___ 271(@300wpm)

Even kings who serve at the whim of gods break the rules every now and then.

As the newly anointed king of the Underworld, I’ve worked hard to clean up the mess left behind by my predecessor. The realm is in relative peace at the moment, my main focus now on deciding the fate of recently departed souls. It’s a tediously boring task, and honestly, one I despise doing. But just when I think I can’t stand another moment of the monotony, one soul changes it all.

Nyssa McKnight earned her ticket to Hell. She made her choices and even at the prospect of eternal damnation, she doesn’t seem to regret the actions that led her here. I can tell by her utter defiance that life has hardened her, a trait that has carried over to her in death. She should be begging me for mercy but instead calls me a “big old winged bat”. I should toss her right into The Crimson River for her insolence but instead I think I’ll keep her in servitude.

While I struggle to reconcile the intrigue—and attraction—I have for this human, I am forced to spend my days investigating rumors of an uprising in the Underworld. Unfortunately, my desire to keep Nyssa has provided a weak spot for the rebellious Dark Fae looking to gain control, one they’re quick to act on. Now, with Nyssa in danger and my throne threatened, I will stop at nothing to restore order, even if it means letting her go.

Can Amell, the king of the Underworld, find true love, or is he destined to rule alone until the end of days?

The Midnight Realm is a standalone romantic fantasy novel about unexpected redemption within The Chronicles of the Stone Veil series.

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You would think being king of the Underworld would be a job full of nothing but perks—as the title would imply—but there are downsides.

The biggest one right now is having to put up with this asshole. Maddox, the demigod, was sent to Vyronas by the god of Life—and death—Zora, to collect me to answer for my crimes.

It’s not that I mind facing the consequences. I knew they would be steep when I made the decision to intervene in a battle that I’d specifically been told to avoid.

But… fuck it.

I’d do it all over again.

Maddox and I pass through the veil that separates Vyronas from the First Dimension of Earth, emerging onto a path carved along the Jungfrau. It overlooks the vibrant green valley of Lauterbrunnen, the craggy, snow-covered peaks of the Bernese Alps in the distance.

Zora chose to settle here when she journeyed from a mortal life to death and from death to the god of Life. Her powers are infinite, and she could live anywhere she wanted, including in mystical realms that can’t be accessed by anyone but the gods.

Instead, she chose a modest Swiss chalet with a killer view and her two Bernese Mountain Dogs, Urosin and Mattia. Zora chose a life of solitude, which isn’t surprising. She spent the first twenty-eight years as a mortal trapped in the Underworld, isolated from family and love, made to endure painful magical infusions to store energy until such time it could be funneled into Kymaris, the then ruling queen of the Underworld. An overly long and involved story that eventually led to Kymaris’s death and my ascension to the throne, but suffice it to say Zora’s an introvert by circumstance and inadvertent design, and thus chooses to live in far-off places.

Maddox moves to the front door and it grates, the familiarity with which he walks right on in without knocking. He’s known her barely a year, whereas I’m all she’s ever known. It’s true I’d be welcome here anytime I wanted to visit, but I don’t.

My time with Zora ended the minute her sister Finley rescued her from the Underworld and she no longer needed me for protection.

Or maybe it never truly started, seeing as how I was one of the Dark Fae tasked with holding her prisoner. I was also responsible for forcing her to submit to the brutal infusions of magic by the Light Fae prince, Pyke. It was my duty to Kymaris that had me hurting the frail human I’d come to love and desire. A pathetic excuse, really. Zora never could’ve loved a monster like me, but my blackened heart beat for her.

That was then, though.

This is now.

Tucking my black wings in tight, I bend slightly to get them under the human-size entryway, closing the door behind me. Urosin’s and Mattia’s booming barks echo through the chalet due to the open layout, high ceilings, and distinct lack of furniture. They run straight for Maddox, not to rip out his throat as an intruder but to bound joyfully around him, vying for his attention and scratches. My teeth grit as he bends over to rub them, twisting his head to shoot me a shit-eating grin.

A crisp breeze that smells of mountain snow washes over me, and I turn to see Zora walking in from the deck that overlooks the valley. As a god, she can look and dress any way she likes, but she’s wearing jeans, knee-high boots with shearling trim, and a fuzzy-looking sweater in a deep, hunter green. Her snow-white hair is piled on top of her head in a messy bun, and her blue-green-gold eyes look upon me with displeasure.

Maddox calls the dogs to his heel and walks out the front door with them. He doesn’t do it out of consideration for me, but rather out of deference to Zora. A god meting out punishment isn’t a public affair, and Zora would never stand for someone to watch.

“You knew better,” she chides as she crosses the polished wood floors. “You were forbidden to interfere in the battle of Vyronas, and you’ve managed to really piss Circe off.”

Circe is the god of Fate and can be prickly. But I can’t help but point out, “She might manipulate the fates, but I also know she embraces free will.”

Zora glares at me. “Onyx wants your head on a platter.”

The god of War. She’s not prickly, but downright ruthless. She’s the one I really need to worry about offending because supernatural beings like demigods and the king of the Underworld are not allowed to help sway the tide of mortal battles, unless Onyx wants it done.

“She’s my daughter, Zora,” I say, clasping my hands in front of me. “There was no way I was going to leave Thalia’s life up to the fates, and I didn’t do much other than destroy a few demons to give the mortals a fighting chance.”