Read Dragons Deal Online

Authors: Robert Asprin

Dragons Deal

BOOK: Dragons Deal
4.75Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads
Table of Contents
Praise for
DRAGONS WILD
"Asprin tackles a new kind of comic fantasy, a little more serious and hard-boiled than previous books. Featuring a likable rake and plenty of action and quirky humor, this series opener belongs in most adult and YA fantasy collections."
--
Library Journal
"Colorful."
--
Publishers Weekly
Praise for Robert Asprin's bestselling series
MYTH
"Stuffed with rowdy fun."
--
The Philadelphia Inquirer
"Hysterically funny."
--
Analog
"Give yourself the pleasure of working through the series. But not all at once; you'll wear out your funny bone."
--
The Washington Times
"Breezy, pun-filled fantasy in the vein of Piers Anthony's Xanth series...a hilarious bit of froth and frolic."
--
Library Journal
"Asprin's major achievement as a writer--brisk pacing, wit, and a keen satirical eye."
--
Booklist
"An excellent, lighthearted fantasy series."
--
Epic Illustrated
"Tension getting to you? Take an Asprin! . . . His humor is broad and grows out of the fantasy world or dimensions in which his characters operate."
--
Fantasy Review
PHULE'S COMPANY
"Plenty of odd characters . . . fun!"
--
Locus
"A winning story . . . part science fiction, part spoof, part heart-warmer."
--
Publishers Weekly
"Light without being frivolous, and displays Asprin's considerable expertise about fencing and things military, especially leadership."
--
Chicago Sun-Times
"Reminiscent of
M.A.S.H
."
--
Analog
"A grand mix of common sense and outrageous and hilarious foolishness stirred with a dash of wisdom into a delectable mess to be served with tongue in cheek."
--
KLIATT
"Reliably entertaining . . . a fun read, light without being vapid and clever without being heavy-handed. This series is Asprin's strongest to date, and it's off to a good start."
"Asprin knows how to make me laugh . . . I suggest you sign up for this particular grand tour of duty."
--
Fear
Also by Robert Asprin
THE BUG WARS
THE COLD CASH WAR
TAMBU
MIRROR FRIEND / MIRROR FOE
(with George Takei)
FOR KING AND COUNTRY
(with Linda Evans)
LICENSE INVOKED
(with Jody Lynn Nye)
E.GODZ
(with Esther Friesner)
The MYTH Series
ANOTHER FINE MYTH
MYTH CONCEPTIONS
MYTH DIRECTIONS
HIT OR MYTH
MYTH-ING PERSONS
LITTLE MYTH MARKER
M.Y.T.H. INC. LINK
MYTH-NOMERS AND
IM-PERVECTIONS
M.Y.T.H. INC. IN ACTION
SWEET MYTH-TERY OF LIFE
MYTH-ION IMPROBABLE
SOMETHING M.Y.T.H. INC.
with Jody Lynn Nye
MYTH ALLIANCES
MYTH-TAKEN IDENTITY
MYTH-TOLD TALES
CLASS DIS-MYTHED
MYTH-GOTTEN GAINS
MYTH-CHIEF
The THIEVES' WORLD
TM
Books edited with Lynn Abbey
THIEVES' WORLD
TALES FROM THE VULGAR
UNICORN
SHADOWS OF SANCTUARY
STORM SEASON
THE FACE OF CHAOS
WINGS OF OMEN
The PHULE'S COMPANY
Series
PHULE'S COMPANY
PHULE'S PARADISE
with Peter J. Heck
A PHULE AND HIS MONEY
PHULE ME TWICE
NO PHULE LIKE AN OLD PHULE
PHULE'S ERRAND
THE DEAD OF WINTER
SOUL OF THE CITY
BLOOD TIES
AFTERMATH
UNEASY ALLIANCES
STEALERS' SKY
The WARTORN Series with Eric Del Carlo
WARTORN: RESURRECTION
WARTORN: OBLITERATION
The DRAGONS WILD Series
DRAGONS WILD
DRAGONS LUCK
DRAGONS DEAL (
with Jody Lynn Nye
)
THE BERKLEY PUBLISHING GROUP
Published by the Penguin Group
Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, USA
Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario M4P 2Y3, Canada (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.)
Penguin Books Ltd., 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
Penguin Group Ireland, 25 St. Stephen's Green, Dublin 2, Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd.)
Penguin Group (Australia), 250 Camberwell Road, Camberwell, Victoria 3124, Australia (a division of Pearson Australia Group Pty. Ltd.)
Penguin Books India Pvt. Ltd., 11 Community Centre, Panchsheel Park, New Delhi--110 017, India
Penguin Group (NZ), 67 Apollo Drive, Rosedale, North Shore 0632, New Zealand (a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd.)
Penguin Books (South Africa) (Pty.) Ltd., 24 Sturdee Avenue, Rosebank, Johannesburg 2196, South Africa
Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
This is an original publication of The Berkley Publishing Group.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party websites or their content.
Copyright (c) 2010 by Bill Fawcett & Associates.
All rights reserved.
No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author's rights. Purchase only authorized editions. ACE and the "A" design are trademarks of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
PRINTING HISTORY
Ace trade paperback edition / December 2010
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Asprin, Robert.
Dragons deal / Robert Asprin and Jody Lynn Nye. p. cm.
eISBN : 978-1-101-47801-1
1. Dragons--Fiction. 2. Carnival--Louisiana--New Orleans--Fiction. 3. New Orleans (La.)--Fiction. I. Nye, Jody Lynn, 1957- II. Title.
PS3551.S6D68 2010
813'.54--dc22 2010034094

http://us.penguingroup.com

One
"Hoooaggh!
Huunngh!" Val's voice echoed inside the toilet bowl. She knelt on the floor in the small, dark bathroom, her eyes squeezed shut.
Mai held back Val's long blond hair and patted her soothingly on the back.
"This is good!" she kept saying. "This means your baby is healthy. This is good that you are sick."
"Is it?" Val asked, raising bloodshot eyes from inside the rim. The tiny Chinese woman looked as placid and chic as if she were sitting on a chaise longue in a cheongsam with a champagne glass in her hand, not sitting on an ancient tiled floor in tailored black slacks, black high-heeled slingbacks, and a teal-colored silk blouse, helping a barely-showing-as-yet pregnant woman deal with the horrors of morning sickness.
Mai rose gracefully to her feet and hauled Val up after her. Though Val was almost a foot taller, she knew that in a contest of strength with Mai, she would probably lose. Powerful things came in very small packages. She was learning not to judge things by appearance. A few recent, bitter lessons had hammered that old maxim into her. Luckily, Mai was her friend, but in this case it was no comfort. She gave Mai a sour look.
"You could at least look less happy that I'm heaving my guts up every morning."
"Why would I be unhappy?" Mai asked. "Do you know how hard it is for dragons to become pregnant? You are a rare and wonderful person in the eyes of the clans today."
"Not everyone," Val said darkly. In her mind, she saw the handsome, debonair, smirking face of Nathaniel, who by now must know he was going to be a father but had the sense not to get anywhere near Val. Or her brother. Or any of their friends, dragon or not. At least, she mused, the child she was carrying would be good-looking.
"Not everyone will be happy, perhaps, but they will be envious as well. A child of your lineage means power. He . . ."
"Is it a boy?" Val asked. She clapped her hands to her ears. "No! I don't want to know!"
Mai grabbed her left wrist and pulled it down. "Or she. I could look, but I don't care. It doesn't matter, Valerie. This will be a dragon baby. You should be proud."
"I'm not ready!"
"It doesn't matter. That is why it takes eleven months to bring one into the world. It gives you time to prepare."
"Eleven! It only takes nine months to have a baby!"
Mai shrugged. "We are not humans, however we look. Our gestation period is different."
"Ohhh," Val moaned. She rubbed her forehead. "I was just about reconciled with nine months, and now you tell me it's going to be longer?"
"I did tell you before. You just didn't want to hear it. Some women blossom in pregnancy."
"Not me. I'm already starting to walk funny," Val said, tottering out into the bedroom and sinking onto the edge of her bed. "The extra weight's throwing off my pace when I run."
Mai followed. She lit gracefully on Val's desk chair like a butterfly touching onto a flower. "You will cope. All females have coped since the beginning of gender. You should be thinking of more important matters."
BOOK: Dragons Deal
4.75Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

Other books

Bodychecking by Jami Davenport
No Regrets by Atkinson, Lila
In Her Sights by Keri Ford, Charley Colins
Playing Up by David Warner
A Secret Rage by Charlaine Harris
Nemesis: Innocence Sold by Ross, Stefanie
Something More by Janet Dailey