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Alex and Azalea

Alex and Azalea

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Alex and Azalea

140 Seiten
1 Stunde
Jan 29, 2017


Before the Oaken twins, there was Alex and Azalea.

Alexander Oaken is a terrible royal elf. He stumbles over his speeches, breaks the nice china, and is late to every meeting. Deep down, he knows this is because he doesn't actually want to be king.

When he takes the chance to leave the Underground in search of an Outsider adventure, he gets more than he could have ever planned for. Azalea, an American student studying abroad in Ireland for the summer, crashes into him like a storm. The best kind of storm.

While Alex's feelings for Azalea grow in the Outside, trouble brews in the Underground. Young elves' bodies are found with increasing frequency as the battle between the elves and Atrums grows more violent. They need a strong leader to save them from the building darkness threatening to engulf their kingdom.

Now Alex has to choose. Does he honor the wishes of his father and take the throne as the next elf ruler...or does he follow his heart all the way back to the Outside?

Jan 29, 2017

Über den Autor

Things you can expect in a Melody Robinette book: -Characters talking...a lot -Characters with flaws...but you love them anyway one form or another. Usually the good, tingly kind ;) AUTHOR BIO: Melody Robinette writes in coffee shops. She edits in coffee shops. She lives in coffee shops. She is a Texas-based writer who is married to an amazingly handsome man and has two super fat cats. She's been writing since the age of 15, getting her start by taking screen shots in The Sims 2 games and writing scenes to go along with them. Primarily she writes both YA and adult books under the Speculative Fiction umbrella (varieties of urban fantasy, paranormal romance), occasionally branching out into contemporary fiction when she has something she just HAS to say. In her non-writing life, she is a teacher. When she taught 12th grade English, she had the pleasure of sharing some of her work with her students, and their enthusiasm for her books was what encouraged her to seek publication. 20 Facts About Melody: 1. She is obsessed with Harry Potter 2. She is a cat person 3. She loves acting and theater. In high school, she was a "theater geek" 4. Her favorite color always has been and always will be: BLUE 5. The 80's cartoon, My Little Pony, is her childhood...and she can draw them pretty well. 6. She loves Disney movies. 7. Belle is her favorite princess because duh. (And her cat's name is Belle) 8. She is a Type One Diabetic 9. Her mom and her husband are her best friends and she's okay with that. 10. Her mom is her #1 Beta reader 11. She can cook really well if she has a recipe in front of her 12. She can be a grammar freak (YOU'RE=YOU ARE) 13. Ireland is her favorite country. 14. She studied abroad in Ireland for two glorious months. 15. She wrote the first half of Oaken in longhand 16. It took her 6 weeks to write "The Choice" 17. It took her 2 years to write "Dream Snatchers" 18. She leads a local writing group called "The Writers' Chapter" 19. She lives in West Texas 20. She is a Starkid.

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Alex and Azalea - Melody Robinette



Royal Disaster

Humans couldn’t handle the magical creatures anymore. There were too many of us. So, they burned us at stakes, calling us witches, calling us evil. But we had something they couldn’t touch. Magic. Something we could use to get away from them forever, to build a place safe from them. So we did. The magical community came together to create our own utopia. The Underground. A place of magic, beauty, and peace. A place where…

Nothing ever happens, Alex muttered, crumpling up the speech he’d written twenty times at least.

He shot it towards the wastebasket. It missed, sailing through the door that was now suddenly open. His father—King Olympus Orpheus Oaken—stood in the threshold, clutching the discarded paper ball in his left hand.

Ready, Son? he asked in his booming, jolly voice. Big night tonight. First speech before the Underground Council. Are you prepared?

Alex rose from his seat, straightening his lapel, and cracking his neck from nerves. This didn’t release the stiffness. It may have made it worse. Of course I’m prepared. Why wouldn’t I be? I’ve been perfecting my speech all day.

Olympus’s eyes moved to the wastebasket filled with crumpled balls of paper. I see that.

Alex and his father walked side by side, Olympus slightly in the lead, to the room reserved only for the annual Underground Council meeting. In the past, this was the place Alex had been told to stay away from no matter what. Before his mother died, she would take him out of the castle until the meeting was over. He didn’t know what they expected him to do. Set the castle on fire? Scream like a petalsie that had been stepped on? Either way, he was banished from the castle on the last day of May of every year.

This was the first year Alex would be allowed to participate. And frankly, he was terrified. As a young boy, he’d pictured dangerous creatures milling about while Olympus tried to keep them under control. This would be the first time Alex would see any of the creatures. Other than in books, the magical creatures didn’t see much of each other. The Great Underground War had left a bitter taste in all of their mouths.

Remember, all of these creatures are much older and wiser than you, Olympus muttered as they neared the Underground Council room. Only speak when spoken to. Deliver your speech and then sit down and listen. Understood?

Alex loosened the fabric around his neck and cleared his throat. Under—er—yeah. Got it.

Pausing at the threshold, Olympus took one final look Alex’s way before letting the door swing open. At first, Alex thought maybe they’d gotten the wrong room. No one was fighting or mawing like animals. They were all sitting around a donut-shaped table. Except for the horse-woman. Centaur, Alex thought, not horse-woman. She was standing.

The room was tall and wide, perhaps to accommodate the leader of the giants—a massive woman who took up the width of five elves and the height of just as many. She was proportionate for her size. And beautiful. Just…really big. She sat cross-legged on the ground before the raised table, which still only reached her waist.

Olympus beckoned Alex inside, who quickly shut the door behind him, moving to stand beside his beaming father.

Welcome, everyone. Olympus spread his arms wide. Before we begin, I’d like to introduce my son, Alexander Olympus Oaken. He will be training to take my place as king.

Alex felt the eyes of the other leaders scrape over him in judgment. This boy will be king? That’s what they were thinking, Alex assumed. He straightened his back, trying to look more intimidating than he really was.

He’d just turned eighteen and was finally growing into himself. His ears didn’t stick out quite so much, and his daily physical training sessions were bulking him up a bit. But he was still helplessly awkward. To Olympus’ chagrin. Olympus was a force. A solid block of kingliness. The exact opposite of Alex.

He will be delivering the welcoming speech this evening, Olympus continued, flashing Alex a proud smile. Whenever you’re ready, Son.

Alex felt his shoulders rising to meet his ears and forced them back down, clearing his throat. Once. Twice. Then a third time. Yes, uh, well. Thanks, Dad. Er—Olympus. King.

Getting off to a great start.

Well—er—welcome to Arbor Castle, everyone. It’s always an honor to host the leaders of the Underground here. Always an honor. Throat clear. I wanted to start out by remembering how we came to be here. In the Underground. Er, humans. They didn’t exactly like us, did they? Too much magic. Too much. Anyway. We came together to get away from them. Built the Underground. With magic.

The expression on the faces of the leaders around the table turned from mildly interested to pained. Alex’s speech was literally hurting them. Which, of course, just made it worse. His words began to run together and the longer he talked, the more tongue-tied he became. Finally, he gave up. So. Yeah. Thanks again for coming today and I will turn it back over to my dad—the, er, king. Elf king.

Olympus’s face was a few shades pinker than usual, and he was smiling tightly, rearranging the papers in front of him. Alex hoped he wouldn’t remark on the speech or bring any more attention to it than was absolutely necessary.

Well, Olympus said. Let’s just get started, shall we?

Alex sank lower in his seat, wishing his Power was the ability to melt into other objects.

Music. Ha. Not the most kingly of Powers.


Green Everything

First time to Ireland, love?

Azalea peeled her forehead off the airplane window, looking around to the woman who’d been sleeping beside her for the majority of the flight.

Yep, Azalea said with an anxious smile. First time out of the country, ever.



The woman smiled broadly. She had kind blue eyes and a head full of crazy brown hair, which her curls made to appear about a thousand times thicker.

Ah. That’s lovely, dear, the woman said. What will you be studying?

Irish culture, I think, Azalea said with uncertainty. The program hadn’t been all that clear on what they would be learning. Just that they would be in the classroom in the morning and off exploring in the afternoon. Are you from Ireland?

A twinkle appeared in the woman’s eyes, and she looked past Azalea out the window, as though she were seeing something that wasn’t there. Not originally, no.

Azalea waited for the woman to continue, but she didn’t. She decided not to push the matter. Her dad had warned her how different the culture would be from Texas and she didn’t know if it was considered rude to ask someone where they were from. So, she just smiled a tight-lipped grin and looked back out the window.

My son is about your age, the woman said after a moment. He’s a wild little rascal, that one.

What’s his name?

Wesley. Wesley King.

Azalea smiled again, not sure if she should comment. Wasn’t it weird to say, ‘Oh, that’s a lovely name,’ when you were talking about an adult child?

So, she asked another question to avoid the issue. Does he live in Dublin?

Sometimes. Sometimes he lives with me in Blarney. Sometimes he travels…other places.

Oh, Blarney, Azalea said, recognizing the name. Like the Blarney Stone?

That castle’s not far from my home, in fact, the woman said. You must visit.

Your home?

No, dear. She chuckled. Blarney Castle. It truly is a beautiful view from the top. I wouldn’t recommend kissing the stone, I’m afraid. The locals think it’s funny to urinate on it.

Azalea made a face.

The woman chuckled. Though, you’d be welcome to visit my home if you so desired. Can’t say there’s much to see. But there is a quaint little pub next door my son likes to frequent. They’re having an open mic night tonight if you find yourself without something to do.

That sounds like fun.

Here. The woman ripped out a page of the magazine she was holding and scribbled an address on it.

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