Tuesday, July 16, 2019

SPOTLIGHT ON S.PETERS-DAVID and ALBATROSS



Albatross A Kendra Spark Novel
Kendra Spark Series 
Book Three
S. Peters-Davis

Genre: Supernatural, Paranormal, Suspense-Romance

Publisher: BWL Publishing, Inc.

Date of Publication: June 1, 2019

ISBN-10: 0228608910
ISBN-13: 978-0228608912
ASIN: B07S29TF9V

Number of pages: 210
Word Count: 60,200

Cover Artist: Michelle Lee

Tagline: A cold-case investigation ends in facing the ultimate psychopaths, a highly-accredited police director gone crime lord and a beautiful malevolent “albatross of a spirit.”

Book Description:

Kendra Spark, Derek Knight, and “ghosty” Jenna Powers, members of an FBI special task force, investigate a cold-case and end up facing the ultimate psychopaths, a highly-accredited police director gone crime lord and a beautiful malevolent “albatross of a spirit.” Both want Kendra for her unique abilities but might settle for Jenna instead.

Derek stops at nothing to keep Kendra and Jenna safe, but what if the worst-case scenario happens, an unstoppable villain and villainess of the dark plane that picks the earth plane as their stomping ground?


Books2Read      Amazon

Excerpt Kendra’s point of view – 1,221 word count

The scent of vanilla stirred the air within the bathroom. “Sparky, why aren’t you in the big house with Derek?” Jenna, in all her ghosty-glory, got my attention using her pet name for me, an annihilation of my last name. She leaned against the doorjamb of Derek’s small cottage version of his home and silently tapped her toe.
“We needed some thought-provoking space apart.” I turned from the mirror and faced Jenna. “So, did you honestly believe that I saw ghosts before you became one? I mean truly.”
“Well, I called you a few weeks ago when Dad’s life lay in peril from a psycho killer targeting FBI agents.” Jenna tilted her head, her eyes narrowed. “Is this about Derek?”
“He continues to struggle with what he saw at the Voodoo Re-resurrection Ritual. I mean, he watched it, actually saw Buster, and Grandma Ellie with all of the Guardian Angels, and the soul-lights belonging to the trafficked teens.” A deep agonizing sigh rolled off my tongue. “You never saw any of the ghosts I did, and yet you called me for your dad. You had to trust in my ability, right?”
“Listen, Sparky, honestly, I called because none of the agents could get a handle on the situation fast enough for me. My concern for Dad had driven me to make the call. At that point, I wanted to grab at anything, including your ability, even if I didn’t fully believe or understand it.” Jenna stepped closer, her gray and fluorescent green running ensemble flattered her slim frame. “I’d wrap my arm around your shoulder if I could. I still feel like I owe you an apology for so many things, not believing in your ghost-vision is but one.”
“Well, you put on a good front for me, because in college, I never doubted your belief in me.”
Jenna chuckled. “I thought most of what you told me related to your fiction. You were always such a good story-teller with your wild-wacky imagination. Most of the time, I figured you set me up for a shock-factor effect.”
A light rap on the front door announced Derek, but he didn’t enter like usual. Jenna shimmered out of sight as I strode to the door and opened it. My lips parted as I sucked in air. Clara Jones, my literary agent…here? “How did you get this address?”
“From your writer friend, Sharon. I got her information from the last manuscript she sent to me because you were here.” She peered over my shoulder, glancing around the inside of the cottage. “Wow, now this is one hell of a writing retreat.” She pushed past me and stood in the center of the room, gaze darting everywhere until it settled on me. “Tell me you’ve started the first book in the series. Knixton House is getting anxious for the media and cover art information, and since I was in D.C., I thought I might pick it up personally.” She forced a smile. “I’m beginning to think you’re dodging my calls and text messages.”
Another light rap on the door, I swung around to Derek. His smile warmed me, but his arched brow and nod toward Clara indicated his concern.
“Come in and meet my Literary Agent, Clara Jones. Clara, FBI Special Agent, Derek Knight.”
“We just met. Mr. Knight told me how to get back here.” And still, Clara moved toward him with the speed of a booster rocket. Her hand extended and grabbed Derek’s before he offered it. She studied Derek’s face, her gaze traveled over him, from head to toe, until his face blazed red.
He pulled his hand from Clara’s. “Nice to meet you, again. Kendra has mentioned you.”
Clara turned to me. “Only mentioned?”
“We’ve been rather busy solving FBI cases.”
With a poof of vanilla, Jenna reappeared next to Clara. “Wow, she’s a looker. And damnation, her eyes keep creeping back to Derek.” Jenna chuckled. “You’ll have to muzzle her or wrap a blindfold around her head.”
I chuckled out loud. Of course, at the worst inappropriate timing.
“I hate to cut your visit short, Ms. Jones, but Kendra’s presence is requested at a meeting downtown D.C., and we are running behind schedule.” Derek pressed his lips together, tension swept along his jaw and temple.
“Wait a minute, buster. This woman already has a job.” She poked a finger in Derek’s chest. “In fact, she’s obligated to complete that job in record-breaking time to meet the commitment of her book contract.” Clara’s green eyes widened as she glared at Derek.
“I think bolts of lightning are flying from her eyeballs and striking Derek, right in the heart, where her fingernail is buried.” Jenna grinned. “What do you think?”
I forced an exasperated breath and stepped closer to the duo. “Derek, I need some time to talk with Clara. Can you go to the meeting without me? You can record it or just pass on anything I should know.”
Derek grabbed my elbow and directed me toward the door. “She’ll be only a moment,” he said as the door slammed behind us. We kept walking away from the cottage and around the side of Derek’s log home. He stopped and whirled me toward him. “Why is she here? When she knocked on my door this morning and requested you, I thought she might be a relative.”
“I have a signed contract to a new publishing house, and Clara’s nervous about the upcoming deadlines. With everything going on, I haven’t told her about my decision to stay here for a while. I’m not sure how to break my contract.” Plus, the fact that I didn’t look forward to a face-off with Clara. I’d neglected this major obstacle. “She has no clue about my ability, or why the FBI would use me. It’s going to take some time to explain.”
“I’m sure the FBI has some kind of legal documentation we can present to Clara that will supersede your contracts.” He tilted my face upward and pulled me closer. His lips touched mine, stealing my breath. His throaty moan electrified the beat of my heart, and I melted against his body.
Then vanilla fluffed the air, but I ignored it.
“Sparky, wrap it up. Little Miss Nasty-Pants is on her way.” Jenna’s face appeared over Derek’s shoulder. She winked and then vanished.
I broke away from Derek’s embrace. His stormy-blues smoldered.
Clara flounced around the corner and ran into Derek’s shoulder. He stood solid as she stumbled, but then she righted herself, eyeing him and then me. “I’m not getting a good vibe with what’s happening here, Kendra. We need to talk. In private.” She glowered at Derek.
“Get this straightened out.” Derek’s gaze met mine, and then he moved away from Clara. “I’ll let Director Powers know you’ve been detained. I’m sure there’s something he can pull out of his hat to help secure your position with the FBI.”
“What’s he talking about?” Clara’s face flushed to a bright red, almost matching her hair.
“You got time for a coffee, maybe two? This might take a while to explain.” I nodded to Derek as he walked away, and then slipped my arm through Clara’s. “Let’s go back to the cottage. It comes with the best little screened-in porch, very private and serene.”

About the Author:

S. Peters-Davis writes multi-genre stories, but loves penning a good page-turning suspense-thriller, especially when it’s a ghost story and a romance. When she’s not writing, editing, or reading, she’s hiking, RV’ing, fishing, playing with grandchildren, or enjoying time with her favorite muse (her husband) in Southwest Michigan.

As DK Davis, she also writes YA and NA paranormal, supernatural novels that involve diverse and mature subject matter.




BWL Publishing Inc.: http://bookswelove.net/   


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Monday, July 15, 2019

VIKING'S CONQUEST by SKY PURINGTON





Viking’s Conquest
Viking Ancestors
Rise of the Dragon
Book Five
Sky Purington     

Genre:  Time Travel Shifter Romance

Date of Publication: July 1, 2019

ASIN:  B07Q4V66ML

Number of pages:  237
Word Count:  72,000

Cover Artist:  Tara West

Tagline: An alpha Viking dragon shifter and his fated mate face their demons in a scorching medieval romance about second chances.

Book Description:

Tormented by her past, Tess hits the open road, and never looks back until she’s forced through time to medieval Scandinavia. Caught in an unraveling prophecy, the only way she can defeat the enemy is to take a mate. But first, she must work through heart-wrenching memories. What she doesn't expect is navigating her rocky history alongside a man as broken as her. A Viking who offers not just solace but sparks untouchable desire.

Though determined to end his rival without becoming mated, Viking Rokar Sigdir begins thinking differently when Tess joins him on his quest and awakens feelings he thought long dormant. Yet with passion and a chance to start anew come dark flashbacks of losing his kin and the unimaginable pain it caused. A misery he fears repeating.

Will Rokar and Tess be able to let their pasts go and work together to end their nemesis so they can share a future? Or are some things just too hard to overcome? Find out as they journey through time and turbulent memories on a fast-paced, otherworldly adventure that becomes not just a conquest of their enemy but of their grief-stricken souls.

Amazon US      Amazon Universal     

FREE in Kindle Unlimited

Excerpt

“How did you and Helga meet, anyway?” Tess began walking again. “Or did you grow up together?”
He seemed relieved to speak of lighter things as he joined her. “I met Helga when visiting an allied tribe.” The corner of his mouth inched up. “She was dancing the first time I saw her.”
How ironic. “Do you like dancing then?”
“I did after I met her.” His crooked grin grew a little. “I was very clumsy, but she didn’t seem to mind.”
“Clumsy?” She chuckled. “But you’re a dragon! We’re the epitome of grace.”
“In dragon form,” he agreed. “But I was not so graceful in human form.”
She arched her brows and eyed him. “So you dance well now?”
“I dance…less poorly.”
She chuckled again, detecting a bit of humor lurking beneath all his baggage. “So you saw Helga dancing. Then what?”
“I waited until she was done dancing then approached her.” His gaze went to the trees swaying in the wind. “She continually tucked a lock of hair behind her ear, but the wind kept blowing it across her face as she smiled at me for the first time.” He absently rubbed his fingers together as though he remembered what her hair felt like. “Eventually, I tucked it back for her.”
“Funny the things we remember,” Tess murmured, rubbing her fingers together as well. “I recall the feel of Axle’s leather jacket, the scent of cigar smoke clinging to it. That was my first thought when we finally started chatting. He smoked cigars, and I smoked cigarettes back then…bad combo…mostly cuz I hate the smell of cigars.” She shook her head and spoke without thinking. “I should’ve known then we were a match made in Hell.”
“I don’t smoke anything,” he divulged, wonderfully frank. “But I enjoy drinking.”
“Me too,” she echoed then relented. “Though I might’ve leaned on it a little too heavily lately.” She shrugged a shoulder, not about to apologize. “Or not. Who knows.”
“We all cope with things how we will.” He sounded unapologetic. “I have barely spoken to my kin over the past two years and as you know, shut them out entirely telepathically…until recently.”
“Right,” she said. “Because of me?”
“So it seems,” he conceded. “Yours was the first voice I’ve heard in my head in a long time. Once that happened, it seemed natural to allow my kin back in.”
“Well, I’m glad to hear that,” she said. “And for what it’s worth, I’m sorry I busted into your mind without permission.” She met his eyes, guilty though she had no choice. “I had no control over it.”
“You mean your dragon took over?”
“I assume so,” she replied. “Considering we’re supposedly fated mates, right?”
He nodded and looked at her with hesitation, clearly wondering if he should say what he was thinking. 
“What is it, Rokar?” she asked. When he started to shake his head, she urged him on. “You’re the one who said we needed to start somewhere so don’t hold back.”
He hesitated another moment before he relented. “I did not mind.”
“Didn’t mind what?” she prompted when he didn’t go on.
Struggling, he finally said, “You…”
She almost grinned. Was he being bashful? “Me?”
“Yes, you,” he stated bluntly.
She couldn’t help another chuckle as she tried to draw him out. “Me, what, Rokar?”
“You.” He sighed and looked at her like she should know what he was talking about. “I was glad you entered my mind without permission.”
He went to say more but snapped his mouth shut, evidently finished sharing. At least in this regard.
“I’m glad too,” she revealed and meant it. “I like the feel of you within my mind.”
The minute she said it she regretted it mostly because it sounded like she was undermining Helga and she hadn’t meant to do that.
“You do?”
His question caught her off guard. “Of course.”
Had Helga rattled his confidence that badly? While typically she’d find that unattractive in a man, preferring a tough-as-nails sort, she knew deep down Rokar was plenty tough. He was just wounded and vulnerable in a way she understood. So she stopped and told him something a woman should have told him long before her. She gave it to him straight.
In fact, her dragon gave it to him even straighter.
“You sound amazing in a woman’s mind, Rokar,” she said. “Your inner voice is wanna-spread-my-thighs-for-you sexy, and your essence is wrap-around-the soul warm fuzzies, all ‘the feels,’ protective. Not to mention—”
That’s all she got out before he proved he did, in fact, possess a good deal of confidence.

He yanked her close and kissed her hard.


About the Author:

Sky Purington is the bestselling author of over forty novels and novellas. A New Englander born and bred who recently moved to Virginia, Purington married her hero, has an amazing son who inspires her daily and two ultra-lovable shepherd husky mixes. Passionate for variety, Sky's vivid imagination spans several romance genres including historical, time travel, paranormal, and fantasy. Expect steamy stories teeming with protective alpha heroes and strong-minded heroines.

Purington loves to hear from readers and can be contacted at Sky@SkyPurington. Interested in keeping up with Sky’s latest news and releases? Either visit Sky’s website, www.SkyPurington.com, subscribe to her quarterly newsletter or sign up for personalized text message alerts. Simply text 'skypurington' (no quotes, one word, all lowercase) to 74121 or visit Sky’s Sign-up Page. Texts will ONLY be sent when there is a new book release. Readers can easily opt out at any time.

Love social networking? Find Sky on Facebook and Twitter.

Website:   www.skypurington.com


Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/sky-purington



Facebook:   https://bit.ly/2NlcFLB





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Sunday, July 14, 2019

COVER REVEAL: MY SOUL TO GIVE A Demon's Love by M. A. Fréchette



MY SOUL TO GIVE
A Demon’s Love
Book One
M. A. Fréchette

Genre: paranormal romance

Publisher: M. A. Fréchette

Date of Publication: October 28, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-9991360-5-5
ASIN: B07T9XZS2S

Number of pages: 342
Word Count: 92,000

Cover Artist: M. A. Fréchette

Tagline: Her soul for revenge—an easy choice. But is the price too high?

Book Description:

With a fatal bullet in her gut, Celina Leviet has only seconds to make a fateful decision. Join her murdered husband in death, or make a deal with a demon.

She doesn’t know how or why Mekaisto found her, but she doesn’t hesitate. In exchange for her soul, he’ll let her live long enough to wreak revenge. The catch? She must kill the murderers with her own hands.

The contract sealed, her skin carrying Mekaisto’s brand, Celina digs into her husband’s past. But every new revelation unravels everything about the man she loved. His company never existed. His family history was a lie. And he belonged to a shadowy religious order whose members know too much about demons.

Her emotions in shreds, she finds Mekaisto’s seductive charms harder to resist. But her dead husband’s secrets aren’t the only betrayal. As the final, shocking truth comes to light, she struggles with the darkest of choices—break her vow and surrender to the unknown, or succumb to the devil she knows.



Excerpt:

She left the bathroom and headed to the kitchen. The criminal investigation team was outside, and some tension left her shoulders. A few dishes lay on the counter, so she put them away, her mind numbing. It was pointless since she wouldn’t be living here anymore, but the act of doing something familiar let her mind relax for a few seconds.
I’m leaving this place. Thomas won’t be with me anymore.
He’d been stressed after he’d got that phone call and she was too late to find out what had bothered him. She’d never be able to help him deal with whatever it was.
“What are you doing?” Kai asked.
She cleared her throat to make sure her voice wouldn’t crack too much. “Putting my dishes away.”
Kai’s arms wrapped around her from behind and she squeezed the plate in her hand, holding her breath. Somehow, affection from him was worse than if he held a knife to her throat.
His hand rested on her chest. “Strange how love is all inside a human’s mind, and yet your heart is the organ aching.”
She tore herself away from him. “I wouldn’t expect a demon to understand.”
“What makes you think I—”
“Look, I don’t want to talk about it with you. I’ve suffered enough.” The plate in her hand shook, and her fingers cramped as she tried to hold it steady.
“No, you have not suffered enough. You’d have chosen to die if you knew what’s coming.”
“Don’t talk as if you know how I feel, you fucking demon.” Her tears cooled the heated flush of her rage, and she hurled the plate at him.
Kai lifted his hand and the crockery shattered into fine dust at his feet. His eyes locked onto hers, and without a word, he grabbed her wrist and dragged her outside.
“What are you doing? Where are you taking me?” Her voice rose higher as she tried tugging away from him.
He stopped near the edge of the woods and faced her, his glowing eyes silencing her questions. His hand rose and black smoke seeped from the ground, sticking to everything it touched. Kai pulled her against him and clicked his fingers.
The smoke seeped into the surface of all that it covered, and her eyes widened. The plants and flowers withered and died, everything turned ashen as though burned. He went back to the house and she followed, glancing back at the destroyed area of the forest. Though no words were exchanged, she knew he had shown her what he could do as a warning. He wouldn’t just threaten her next time she attacked him.
Going back to the master bedroom, she grabbed a bag out of her closet to pack. Thomas’ clothes hung in front of her, and a lump in her throat constricted her breathing. She swallowed hard, trying to make it go away. Grabbing hold of a sleeve, she waited for Thomas to come up behind her to get ready for work. But no one was in the house except for her, and the demon.




About the Author:


M. A. Fréchette writes the darker side of romance.

Being an extremist, she loves both the dark aspects of life and everything sweet. All her stories are either set in Canada where she lives or in alternate worlds she made up while living within her imagination. When not writing, she thinks of the next scene or plot while enjoying her work as a cover designer. Although she has a fascination for monsters, with a bachelor degree in criminology, she understands there’s no need to create the paranormal; humans are capable of inflicting nightmares of their own.

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Friday, July 12, 2019

COVER REVEAL: MERGED by Jim and Stephanie Kroepfl





Merged
Jim and Stephanie Kroepfl

Genre: Science Fiction

Publisher: Month9Books

Date of Publication: September 17, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-948671-34-7
ASIN: B07P7ST29L

Number of pages: 293

Cover Artist: AM Design Studios

Tagline: Great minds don’t always think alike.

Book Description:

Seven of our country’s most gifted teens will become Nobels, hosts for the implantation of brilliant Mentor minds, in an effort to accelerate human progress.

But as the line between what’s possible and what’s right draws ever blurrier, the teens discover everything has a cost.

Scientists have created an evolved form of living known as Merged Consciousness, and sixteen-year-old Lake finds herself unable to merge with her Mentor.

Lake, the Nobel for Chemistry and Orfyn, the Nobel for Art, are two from among the inaugural class of Nobels, and with the best intent and motivation. But when Stryker, the Nobel for Peace, makes them question the motivation of the scientists behind the program, their world begins to unravel.

As the Nobels work to uncover the dark secrets of the program’s origins, everyone's a suspect and no one can be trusted, not even the other Nobels. 

As the Mentors begin to take over the bodies and minds of the Nobels, Lake and Orfyn must find a way to regain control before they lose all semblance or memory of their former selves.



About the Authors:

Jim and Stephanie Kroepfl are a husband-and-wife team who write stories of mystery and adventure from their cabin in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. When they aren’t dodging moose, their story ideas appear during their walks with their dog, who far prefers chasing balls to plotting novels. Jim and Stephanie are world travelers who seek out crop circles, obscure historical sites and mysterious ruins.



Wednesday, July 10, 2019

INTERVIEW WITH MARCELLA BURNARD (Enemy Within)


 
 
Well! Look who has come back to talk to us again. It's Marcella Burnard. Have a seat Marcella. We've got a few questions for you.
SC: Tell me a little bit about your main character of this book.
MB: Captain Ari Idylle used to command one of the sharpest Prowler crews in the Armada. Then she was taken prisoner by the alien Chekydran and accused of spying. They finally let her go, but no one, Ari least of all can figure out why. She's on a mission to get her command back and to prove the aliens don't control her. The problem is she's not sure they don't.
SC: Ah, the unknown.  Do you believe in the paranormal and if so, do you have an experience you can share?
MB: Yes. I read tarot and do a little mediumship for clients from time to time. Very early in my career, a client, let's call him Sam, called me and asked if I could connect with his dead father. I told Sam I would try. Blithely, sure that I'd get the usual thing - a father who'd died of natural causes - I went through my ritual of trying to find the person my client wanted to contact. I ended up with a man who'd died a violent, messy death. He'd shot himself in the head. Who wants to come out and ask someone they've never met, "Hey, did your father blow his brains out?" I didn't. I so tap danced around that, asking if his father had come to a violent end. Sam gasped and said, "Noooo!" I pulled up short, but this male presence was SO strong and the images so vivid. So I came at it another way. "Do you know someone who might have killed himself with a gun?" Again, Sam was horrified and said no. So I moved on. We talked about other issues and generally had a really good reading when about 45 minutes in, Sam gasped, "I know who it is! The man who committed suicide! It was the jeweler who designed and made our wedding rings." The dead man hadn't gone far. He told me what he wanted. So I said, "After he died, you did something for him. You said thank you." Sam said, "I did. After I heard, I took of my beautiful wedding ring and said, 'I'm sorry you suffered like that. Thank you for these beautiful pieces of work.'" I responded, "He wants you to know he heard, and he appreciates you thinking of him."
That was all it took. I was released to go on reading for Sam. Though we never did connect with his dad. Still. This is one of those experiences that still gives me goosebumps.
SC:  What titles are you working on now that you can tell us about?
MB: The second book in this series, Enemy Games is in final edits right now. It starts about a year after Enemy Within ends. It follows Jayleia Durante, who you meet in this first book. She's elbow-deep in a messy disease outbreak when her father vanishes. Since he was the director of a major spy agency, everyone who wants to know what he knew comes gunning for his only child: Jayleia. If she wants to save herself, her father and her people, she's going to have to redefine the terms enemy and ally.
The third book in the series, Enemy Storm, is draft complete and almost ready to turn into my excellent editor. I can't say too much here without spoilers. So let's just say the book exists and as soon as I iron out a few more wrinkles, I'll hand it off and move on to book four.
If you want to try out something slightly different, I have a hot SFR novella serialized on Radish. It is set in the same world as this series. It's called Enemy Mine. You can find it by title or by my name.
SC: Thanks for taking the time to stop in today. Let's take a look at your novel now.
 

Enemy Within
Chronicles of the Empire
Book One
Marcella Burnard

Genre: Sci-Fi Romance

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Date of Publication: July 17, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5092-2698-6 Paperback
ISBN: 978-1-5092-2699-3 Digital

Number of pages: 422
Word Count: 98539

Cover Artist: Debbie Taylor

Tagline: The military hung her out to dry. Captain Ari Idylle isn’t going to dangle.

Book Description:

Horrific torture in an alien prison torpedoed Captain Ari Idylle's military career. Stripped of command and banished to her father's scientific expedition to finish a PhD she doesn't want, Ari refuses to fly a desk. She intends to have her command back by any means possible, until pirates commandeer her father's ship, and she's once again a prisoner. Perhaps this cunning captor isn't what he pretends to be.

As far as Cullin Seaghdh is concerned, the same goes for Ari. Her past association with aliens puts her dead center in Cullin's cross-hairs. If she hasn't been brainwashed and returned as a spy, then she must be part of a traitorous alliance endangering billions of lives. He can't afford the desire she fires within him. His mission comes first. He'll stop at nothing, including her destruction, to uncover her true purpose and protect what is his.




Excerpt:

“You know how to use that thing?” He nodded at the energy blade in her hand.
She swallowed outrage and awarded him a tight smile. “I am proficient.”
He grinned. “Ever fight for your life?”
“No,” she said, pleased her tone remained steady.
His smile deepened. “Then this isn’t so different. We aren’t fighting for your life, are we? We’re fighting for theirs.” He gestured at the knot of scientists.
Fear gripped her. She’d won matches. She had awards. She practiced religiously. Sure, she’d fought Chekydran with the might of an Armada Prowler at her disposal. But energy blade combat had always been a highly regulated sport, a dance with specific choreography designed to minimize injury. She’d never dueled for anything of more value than a bit of metal or a piece of paper to hang on her office wall. Swallowing hard, she eased into guard position.
Taking his time, he matched her stance. Ari did her best not to frown at the avid smiles on his men’s faces or at the effortless way he sank into position and crossed his blade with hers.
Her mind raced. She had to find a way to keep everyone alive. No matter the cost.
Captain Cullin Seaghdh tapped her blade with his, bringing her attention back to her predicament and his damnably cocky grin.
“You’re willing to trade your life for theirs?” he asked, his question pitched for her ears only, his smile gone and his gaze searching.
Troubled, she shook her head. “Are you intimating I have a choice?”
“Then fight.” He lunged.
Ari scrambled back, her parries thrown off by the aggressive attack. He didn’t press his advantage. That maddening grin flashed at her as he backed off. One step. Two.
Charity. She wanted to scream at him. She clamped her jaw shut and advanced the ground he’d offered.
“Out of practice?” He opened his defenses, daring her.
She accepted, ignoring the taunt. She had no intention of explaining that she’d had a hard time keeping up on weapons practice while a prisoner of war. Her attack wavered, but she pulled it together and forced him back a step to avoid her blade. He drew her in and then pushed her back, like a teacher hearing lessons. She ached to wipe that smile from his face.
“Point,” he said, nodding at her chest.
She glanced down. The bastard had sliced clean through her jacket and the buttons of her shirt. A shiver ran through her. One millimeter more and she’d be bleeding, probably on the floor. A slice like that one took enough control and skill to scare her.
“Lesson one,” he said. “Watch the man wielding the blade, but never lose sight of the business end.”
Lessons? Or something more? From the shock of physical awareness twining through her blood, she suspected they were no longer discussing energy blades.
Snarling to cover the grudging admiration at Seaghdh’s skill welling up within her, Ari charged him. He did not retreat. They locked, body to body, blade to blade. Feeling the leashed strength coiled in him, she knew instantly that she’d made a mistake, one that in any other circumstance would have been fatal. Scorched where their bodies strained against one another at chest and hip, she struggled to control the rush of yearning crashing her defenses. What was wrong with her?
She met his hooded gaze. Desire glittered in the golden depths of his eyes. Pleasure rocketed through her, almost painful in its intensity. She’d forgotten what if felt like to be appreciated as a woman, and the want in his eyes, shadowed by surprise, took her breath away.

About the Author:

Marcella Burnard graduated from Cornish College of the Arts with a degree in acting. She’s a Tarot-reading, Third-degree Wiccan who knows far too much about space travel because she desperately wanted to be an astronaut when she grew up. Turns out she gets air sick. She wisely decided to write space travel instead. Marcella writes science fiction romance, urban fantasy, paranormal, and fantasy. If a story brings the weird, Marcella’s right there for it. She lives in Florida where she and her husband are outnumbered by cats. Marcella is actively involved in feline rescue in the Tampa Bay area and you can always find cat photos and videos on her Facebook page or on her Instagram account.









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