His Reluctant Princess by Kyra Seth



I leaned against the wall and drew in a deep breath. As the salty sea breeze filled my lungs, I raised my face to the sky and allowed the bright Goan sunshine to bathe me in its warmth. For the first time in my life, I felt free. I felt safe. 
“It’s good to see you happy for once,” said Freddy, and I tried not to make a scrunchy face.
Happy was a bit of a stretch. I hadn’t felt happy for a long time. And I didn’t think I ever would. But, while I couldn’t do happy, I could definitely do grateful. Which meant that I couldn’t unload any more of my issues on Freddy, who had been kind enough to offer me shelter when I turned up at his doorstep unannounced.
“Only an idiot wouldn’t be happy in paradise,” I replied, with a smile.
And that proved what my mother had always said. I was an idiot. 
My father had been the last Raja of Hindal, and I had inherited his considerable fortune, which was good since I refused to touch my mother’s money. After the witch died - hopefully, in prison - I was going to donate all her money to charity in her sister, Princess Smriti’s name, knowing that it would make my mother’s evil soul weep in fury for the rest of eternity. 
For now, I had plenty of money. Enough to live wherever I wanted. 
When I left Nagaur House and my old life behind, I had chosen to live in paradise - or what passed for paradise on earth - and yet, I couldn’t dredge up even one ounce of happiness from the bottom of my miserable soul. All because of a man. His Highness Digvijay Singh, Maharaja of the erstwhile princely state of Bindhar, also known as DV.
Who was the moron who said that doing the right thing brought its own form of joy? Whoever he was - because of course, it was a man. A woman would never say anything so stupid - he deserved to be shot in the head. At point-blank. Because it wasn’t true. For once in my life, I had done the right thing, and all it did was bring me misery. 
I had broken off my betrothal to DV because I couldn’t bear to be tied to a man who didn’t want me. I had seen it in his eyes every time he looked at me. He was trapped. And he wasn’t even fighting to get away. He was just resigned to his fate.
You’d think that after a lifetime of not being wanted by anyone, one more rejection wouldn’t pinch anymore. But it did. Oh, it did. The resignation that I saw in his eyes when he talked about our future together on the night of Sona’s wedding hurt like a bitch. He was too decent to dump a girl whose mother had been arrested for murdering her sister and brother-in-law. A girl who was now all alone in the world except for a grandmother and a new-found cousin. 
He might have been too decent to break it off, but I wasn’t. I was tired of feeling unwanted. 
All my life, my mother had treated me like a burden. As if I was a cross that she had to bear. A taint on the pure bloodline of the Nagaurs and the Hindals. I had grown up believing that I would never be good enough for my family, no matter how much I tried. My grandmother had been too wrapped up in her grief over my aunt’s death to notice how my mother was treating me, and I had believed all the nonsense that my mother had stuffed into my head. 
When I realised the extent of my mother’s crimes, I saw that there was nothing to tie me to my blue-blooded family anymore. I was only living in Nagaur House because I was too much of a chicken to stand up to my bully of a mother. Now that she was in jail, I was free to live my life on my terms. Free to break away from anything and anyone who made me feel less of a person. Unwanted. Rejected.
My grandmother had a shiny new granddaughter, Sona. She didn’t need me hanging around the house as a constant reminder of my mother’s crimes. Which was why I broke off my engagement and walked out on my family that night.  

She refuses to marry a man who doesn’t love her…

A princess in retreat, Her Highness Natasha Raje breaks her unwanted betrothal to Maharajah Digvijay Singh aka DV, turns her back on the world of old money and even older grudges, and escapes to Paradiso, a commune in Goa.

He knows she’s nothing but trouble, and yet he can’t get her out of his mind…

DV is thrilled Tasha broke off their betrothal. He doesn’t want to marry her any more than she wants to marry him…and yet, he misses her. Badly enough to end up spying on her at her precious commune.

When his disastrous stint at spying coincides with someone playing a malicious prank on Tasha, DV moves in, bag and baggage, to play hero. Her Highness may not be marrying him but he’ll be dammed if he doesn’t still keep her safe!

Can their explosive attraction win over the baggage of their shared past? Can Tasha trust DV with her fragile heart? And can DV keep her safe from her stalker long enough to convince her to give him a second chance?