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Love Story Box

Royal Rebel

Royal Rebel

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She's a princess with a rebellious streak. He's a royal guard known for chasing every skirt in the palace. When the two of them get together, it's one rowdy royal ride.

The Pickles go royal in the second book of the royal trilogy in JJ Knight's bestselling Pickleverse.

A sheltered princess confesses her secret love through the hedge of the castle rose garden — to the wrong man. And not just any man. The biggest playboy in the palace..

Quirky and charming but enchantingly heartfelt, this regal read will be one of your very best rom-coms this year. ~ BookAddict

Also: The ebook version is exclusive to Amazon in Kindle Unlimited. Find it there.

Royal romance. Princess-bodyguard. V-card. Several high-steam love scenes.

  • Ebooks and audiobooks are delivered instantly via email for you to send to your preferred ereader, phone, or device.
  • Unsigned paperbacks are made to order at the printer and shipped direct to you.
  • Signed paperbacks and book boxes are hand packed by us in Texas and ship in 2-3 business days.

Book Summary

It’s not often I do something that could get my junk in a jam.
But I’m doing it now.

For the last few months, I've trained to become a royal guard for the Avalonian Palace Regiment. We protect the King, the Queen, and the two Princesses.

One of them, Octavia, was my best friend when I was six, back when kids of the staff were allowed to be around the two girls of the royal family.

I’ve missed her for the last seventeen years. But yesterday, I saw her in the palace rose garden.

Things might have gotten a little hot.

And now I’m sneaking her out of the palace. Taking her dirty dancing.

But there is one thing a royal guard should always do.
Protect the royal family.

And I don't think what we’re about to do next is going to count.

Read Chapter One

Chapter 1: Octavia

My sister Lili grabs my hand as we rush down the long stone tunnel beneath the palace.

Two princesses on the run.

“This is exciting,” Lili says. She’s three years younger than me, just turned twenty. We’ve only escaped our guards one other time in our lives, when we helped our older brother Leo avoid his wedding a few months ago.

The wall sconces light up as we approach each one, reacting with motion sensors. We go so fast I almost lose a shoe. I borrowed these silver flats from Lili, and we had to stuff tissues in the toes to make them fit.

But they looked perfect with my jeans and silver sweater. Lili and I spent hours deciding on my look for this big day.

Now, we only have to get there.

“What are you going to say to him?” Her voice drops to a whisper. We’re in the part of the tunnels that branch near Mother’s office. That woman can pick up the sound of her daughters through a wall of steel.

“I don’t know! Hello? I love you?”

She shakes her head, her long brown hair settling on her shoulders. She’s definitely the prettier princess, so I had to be the wild one, streaking my black hair with blue and pink. I’m also freakishly tall, even if my feet are smaller than hers. I tighten my toes to avoid the shoes falling off. We should have used two tissues.

“Octavia, you barely know him. Keep it simple. Tell him you’d like to meet.”

“But we will be meeting!”

“You know what I mean. At night, some other moment when you can spend some time together.”

Right. Like that will be easy. We’re risking life and limb and our father’s wrath to do this.

Meet a man.

A guard, in fact.

When I was born twenty-three years ago, my father took one look at me and decided that no boys between the ages of seven and thirty would be allowed to work inside the palace walls. No man would ever compromise his daughter.

But this year my big brother Leo defied him and hired a new set of young guards. They’ve been training for weeks on the palace grounds, and I immediately spotted the one I wanted.

Gregor Lisbon.

He’s 1.99 meters tall (six-foot-six to you Americans and Brits). Twenty-four years old. Played rugby in high school. Strong. Huge. The sort of man who can sweep you up and carry you away.

And he’s single. At least according to the serving girls who know these things. So I’ve fallen madly in love.

But here’s the thing.

We’ve never actually spoken. He has no idea I am pining for him.

I’m going to fix that today.

“Flashlight ready?” Lili asks.

We’re coming up on the part of the tunnels where the lights have stopped working. We can’t report it, or our guards will know we’ve been here. They think we’re taking a nap.

It’s a tremendous risk.

This better be worth it.

The next lamp fails, so I click on the flashlight. The final part is tricky, because we have to exit into an old mop room, make sure no one is there to see us, and pop into the hall to dash to the gardens.

That’s where he’ll be.

Not waiting for me. No, he has no idea I’m coming.

But because he always takes a walk in the gardens after lunch.

And this time, I’ll be there to meet him.

I ease the tunnel door open and peer out. No one uses this closet, and stacks of deteriorating mops are there solely to hide the tunnel entrance.

“It smells so bad in here,” Lili says.


We leave our flashlights in a bucket inside the tunnel by the door. I’m careful as I pass through the mops to avoid making noise.

Lili almost knocks one over, but I catch it. “Careful!” I hiss.

I pause outside the door to listen.

“Anyone out there?” she whispers.

“I don’t think so.”

We slip into the hall. It’s empty.

“Here we go!” Lili says. We exit a side door to the herb garden.

No one has seen us. We hustle past the raised beds, mostly barren since we’ve only just started to see signs of spring this early in March.

Soon, we’re out the rear gate to the back side of the rose garden.

“I’ll stay here and keep watch,” Lili says, dropping onto a bench under the cover of a trellis. “Remember the signal.”

I hoot like an owl, which is probably ridiculous since we’ve never seen an owl in Avalonia. But it’s what we agreed to.

“Perfect,” Lili says. She looks me over, spreading my hair on my shoulders. There’s a chill in the air, but we didn’t think about coats. It doesn’t matter. I’m practically sweating with anxiety.

She puts her hands on my shoulders. “Go get your man.”

I give her a squeeze and hurry through the maze of rose bushes to the front entrance of the garden. Everything will go perfectly. I’ll confess my undying love. Gregor will take me in his arms.

And we’ll live happily ever after.

That’s what happens to princesses, right?

My mind tries to butt in with a list of all the princesses with divorces, scandals, and tragedies, but I shove them away. This is the Disney version of the story, and I’m the lead.

I smile down at my silver slippers. Even the shoes are right.

The roses are barely budding, but the high trellis arches over the spindly vines, providing protection from anyone looking down.

I hear male voices and duck behind the evergreen hedges that line the path to the entrance. This is a great place to wait. I can stay hidden until I’m ready to make my presence known.

Footsteps arrive. A ton of them. There are many voices, plus the occasional hollow bounce of a ball on the path. Most of the guards head to the basketball courts after lunch.

“I’m taking you down today, Sendrick.”

“Not a chance.”

“You couldn’t make a basket if we lowered it to the ground!”

There are others. It doesn’t matter. Gregor is a man of routine, and his routine is to enter the rose gardens every day.

The crowd moves on. It’s quiet for a moment.

A single set of footsteps gets closer, walking along the hedge.

It’s him! It has to be! This is how it’s happened each time I’ve watched from the tower.

He reaches the tall edge, the clop of his guard boots firm and sure. He’s on the other side of these bushes! A few more steps and I’ll see him!

I’m supposed to wait until we get to the roses, when we’ll be face to face.

But I panic. What was I going to say again? I can’t remember. I blurt, “I might be in love with you.”

The footsteps stop. I should walk around the tall hedge so I can see him.

But this is nice. The leafy wall between us makes it easier. I’m so wild with emotion that I probably look like a crazy apple, all red cheeks and shine.

No response.

I push on. “It’s Princess Octavia. I’m not very experienced with these things, but I’ve been watching you.” Oh, gross. I sound like a stalker. I quickly add; “You’re amazing.”

Gregor says nothing, so I drop to my hands and knees. The base of the hedge is only a twist of branches you can see through.

His palace-issued guard shoes are still there.

I stand back up so my voice won’t be coming from the ground. “I understand that there’s a risk to meeting me. My dad is a little overbearing.” I let out a shaky laugh. “But I’d like to see you. There are ways.”

More silence. Maybe he’s not interested. My heart falls.

“If you don’t want to, I understand. Go on to the courts with your friends. But if you are, I’ll meet you under the cover of the rose arch.”

I wait, my heart pounding. I can’t hear him moving.

I drop to the ground again. He’s tapping his foot.

Then a step! Toward the entrance of the gardens!

Oh, God. He’s coming.

I crawl along the ground, watching his feet.

Another step. Another.

I stand back up.

Here it is.

The beginning of Octavia and Gregor.

We first met in the rose gardens. It’s what we’ll tell our children.

We walk side-by-side, separated by the hedge. Only a few steps until it ends, and we will see each other beneath the arch.

Will he take my hands? Will we kiss?

My heart hammers. This is happening!

Three more steps.



I turn to face my great love.

And gasp.

It’s not Gregor at all!

I’ve confessed to another guard!

And this one is the worst! I’ve seen him flirting with the girls on staff, stealing away with them for trysts. Rumor has it he was caught with his face between someone’s legs on the back stairs!

He’s the biggest manwhore of the guards!

He shifts his mirrored sunglasses to the top of his short-cropped hair and gives me a slow grin. “Hello, Princess. Thrilled to do anything you like.” His eyes drink me in. “To the bench, then?” He peers up at the trellis that hides us. “Looks private.”

What have I done?

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