Beta readers needed for Eve of Change!

Hey Everyone! I have a new series called After the Merging. The first book, Eve of Change will be released at the end of August/beginning of September. I’m looking for a few good beta readers to check out the Advanced Reader’s Copy. I’ve added a description of the book as well as a form that anyone can fill out if interested in reading the book and giving me feedback. I’m looking for typos as well as story continuity. If you’re interested, just fill out the form and tell me what format you’d prefer it in. I can convert it to pdf or mobi.  Please don’t fill out the form if you’re not willing to give me feedback. I’m trying to make the book the best it can be, so I need details people.🙂

 

Eve of Change

After the Merging, magic spilled over from the five magical planes to the mortal realm. Eve Gardner had been one of the results of that bleed over. She had been born magical, and her non-magical mother had given her away. Raised by a powerful goddess who didn’t have the capacity to show love, Eve had craved the day she would be free.

Now, some eight years after gaining that freedom, she likes her life. She has a great boyfriend, a job that she doesn’t mind, and the simple mundane life she had fought so hard to get. A woman’s missing daughter changes everything, though. Eve can’t help but look into it. The girl is a magical human who was being raised by shades in Underworld.

Unfortunately, her curiosity forces her back into the life she’d thought she had gotten away from. Add in someone impersonating her and trying to kill the Hades herself, and Eve is in for one wild ride. Because Eve soon finds that the girl she’s searching for is as different as she is and changes are coming with Eve at the center of it all.

 

Fabled Lost is now available for pre-order!

Whoo-hoo! I am so freakin’ happy to say that Fabled Lost is now available for pre-order on Amazon. It has been a long time coming, but finally, the wait is almost over. Fabled Lost is priced at 2.99 for pre-order, but when it goes live on August 31st, it will go up to 3.99 so don’t wait. You can pick up your copy from Amazon here or click the pic below. I’m also going to work on getting the book available for pre-order through Smashwords, and I’ll let ya know when I do. Have a great Humpday all!

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“My poor, sweet beast. How broken we are apart.”

William Ford just wants his life back. He was a normal guy who took a job working as a glorified gofer at a lab, and now he is a freak who turns into an even bigger freak when he can’t control himself. Slowly, he is slipping away until he fears only the beast inside him will remain. That is when he meets Lucian Dubois. The Council leader helps William by bringing him to the strongest Fae in existence, the Bruce. Only the Bruce wants William as his champion while William wants his freedom—freedom from the Caduceus, freedom from the Fabled, and freedom from the beast within. A chance encounter with a woman will change everything he finds important because this isn’t their first meeting or their first life.

Kairi Blake is living a lie. She lives in a town where no one is real, goes to a college that is a sham, and gets monthly injections that kept the farce in place. Her primary problem is that she can’t remember anything but the lie. Help from a friend brings back the barest of memories, but it’s enough to give her direction to the only family she has.

Together Kairi and William go on the run from not only the enemy but their supposed allies as well to help reunite Kairi with her past. Little did they know that their pasts are so deeply intertwined, and only together can they save each other.

Fabled Lost

Phew! This has been one hellofa year so far. I won’t go into too much detail because the truth is that everybody has hardships in their lives. I will say that a death in my immediate family put my mind in a place where writing was impossible. Because of that, Fabled Lost, the third book in The Fabled Series, was continuously pushed back until I resorted to dubbing it “The Never Ending Novel.” But it wasn’t never ending, just agonizingly slow going. That being said, I am exuberantly happy to say it is FINALLY off to my editor. What does that mean in terms of a release date? All I can say for definite at this point is that it’s a heck of a lot closer than it was a month ago but still has a way to go. The instant I know for certain, I will set it up for pre-order and do a little happy dance—and, of course, post about it so y’all will know.

For now, those who haven’t started The Fabled Series, book one, The Fabled, is currently free through July 31 with Smashwords’ Summer Sale. You can find it here.

Thank you all for sticking with me! You don’t know how much it means to me.

∼Sara.

The Light is Live!

Hey all! If you’re like me, you’re super busy with a million and one post-Christmas things so I’ll make this post short and sweet. The Light is now available on Amazon. You can get your copy here. Also, The Avery Tywella Complete Series is available in a box set at a holiday price of only 7.99. This also includes Craven’s book. The first book, Darkened, is still free for anyone who wants to try the series before buying it. You can pick up your copy of Darkened here. Or, if you’d rather buy the box set, you can pick it up here. I hope everyone has a wonderful New Years. Try not to make too many resolutions. I know I’ve already begun compiling a list knowing I’ll only stick with one or two–if I’m lucky.

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The Light is now available for pre-order

Hey all! I hope your December is going awesomely. I, like many, both love and hate this time of year. While the nostalgia of Christmas is nice, the stress is sometimes overwhelming, but I really believe this is a season for family, especially kids. The look on their faces when they see all the lights setup is priceless, and worth the effort every time.

Now, on to the important stuff. The Light: Book Three of the Fallen-Fey Chronicles is now available for pre-order. You can get it here.

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Also, I’m working on getting the entire Avery Tywella Series available in a box set. This will include Craven as well, all for one low holiday price, so if you know anyone who hasn’t read the series yet or are looking for a great gift to give, this would be the perfect time to read the entire series. I’ll do another post when it goes live, which will be by Friday at the latest.

Have a Great Monday!

The Cursed is Live!

Hey Everyone! I hope your week is going fabulously. The Cursed actually went live last night, but I was busy at the time and forgot to let the world know. To err is Human, right? If you didn’t already pre-order it, you can pick it up at Amazon here.

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I also wanted to let everyone know about a promotion I’m running over the next few days. The Darkness will be free starting tomorrow, the 25th, through Friday. I know there are tons of sales going on right now, but nothing beats free, so if you haven’t had a chance to read the series yet, now is the perfect time to start.

Book three, The Light, will be released late December. I’ve been too busy with everything else to sit down with my editor and hash out an exact date but it definitely will be before the end of the month of December. I would love to have it out before Christmas, though. I don’t know about you, but I love sitting back and doing absolutely nothing but read the week after Christmas (I usually get one day to veg out then it’s back to work, but I make that day count).

I hope you all have the best Thanksgiving in the history of Thanksgivings!

 

The Cursed

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Hey everyone! Holy smokes I have been so busy with home renovations I actually forgot to post this like two weeks ago. How sad is that? It was probably all the dust from sanding or the fumes from the stain and/or paint that had my brain in a haze. Anyway, I woke up this morning after having a supremely vivid dream and my first thought was that I didn’t tell the world The Cursed was up for pre-order. So, I worked on coffee first, and once I felt able to form coherent sentences, I went to typing. The Cursed will be released November 24th, and the price is only .99 right now. When the book goes live, however, it will go up to 1.99. I’ll be doing the same thing for The Light when it comes out. That way those readers who are actually following the series get a discount. I know it’s not much but hey, every little bit helps.

I am so freaking excited about The Curse because it’s Luke’s book. I know, I know. Finally, Luke has his own story. It delves into how he was cursed in the first place, which actually made my friend giggle with joy ( not because he was cursed, but because she finally knew why). She told me a hole had finally been filled by reading Luke’s story, and I’d have to agree. Luke definitely got the wrong end of the stick, and now, I won’t lie to you. Things aren’t all rainbows and puppy dogs at the end of the book, but Luke’s life is looking up, that’s for sure.

As far as book three, The Light, it is still a work in progress but is set to be released at the end of December, probably right before Christmas but I’m not certain on the date yet. Anyway, without me yammering on anymore. Here’s the first chapter for you to check out. If you want to pre-order the book just click here.

Chapter One

Luke could feel the sting in his chest as the spell was forced into him. The Witch’s eyes turned first pure black before slowly illuminated with the dark magic coursing through her and into him. He tried to pull away, tried to run from his fate, but his legs wouldn’t obey. He deserved this. If it wasn’t for him, her sister would still be alive. Because of this, he would accept what would be done to him by not only this Witch but the First Lord as well.

“Luke, Angel of the Kingdom, I curse you. You will forevermore be forced to experience the death of all the females of this plane and the Kingdom’s. You will warn those of the death you have foreseen and you will not be able to recant it. This is my wish and so it shall be.”

“So it shall be,” the other Witches repeated.

He could feel the curse spread through him like a virus, consuming him entirely. When it was through, he fell to the ground, and the Witches surrounding him moved back several feet. He knew they wouldn’t want to be the one to trigger the curse. No one wanted to know when or how she would die.

The Witch who had cursed him was the only one who didn’t move away. “Perhaps a lifetime of death will force you to find life more precious.”

Luke looked into her eyes and nodded. He wouldn’t tell her how sorry he was again. His words meant nothing to her, and he had accepted his fate already anyway. He sighed deeply. It would be a long eternity to endure.

Luke woke from his dream that was a memory and shook off the feeling of foreboding that always followed. It had been more than three hundred years since that night in the woods outside Lancaster, and he still carried the burden of the curse placed on him. His chest ached, and he rubbed his hand along the scar marking it. He knew what had him reliving the moments of being cursed. He had examined every way that Riya and Avery could be connected. Those women were the only two since he’d been cursed who were able to touch him and not activate it.

He thought it might be because of their mated status when they touched him, but he immediately ruled out that theory because his own mother had triggered the curse, and he was living proof that she had been mated. After all, Angels couldn’t reproduce if they weren’t bonded to another.

He couldn’t see any other similarities though. They came from completely different walks of life. Hell, Avery was a Goddess whereas Riya was a Witch, not even a particularly strong one. It wasn’t that she couldn’t hold her own, but he had thought Avery’s aversion to his curse was because she was so powerful. That didn’t hold true for Riya. So either Riya was an exception for a different reason than Avery, or there was some common denominator that Luke couldn’t see.

There was a knock on his bedroom door. “Luke, get your ass up,” Zach shouted. “We have Darkness plaguing the map.”

Luke glanced at the clock. It was only three thirty in the morning. That was too damn early to be fighting the Darkness. Didn’t these guys sleep? Luke jumped out of bed and threw a T-shirt on before flying to the ops room. Zach was right. There were multiple sightings in five different areas across the world.

Zach and Sam were studying the huge globe before them. The thing was about six feet in diameter and rotated slowly, allowing them to all see what was happening in various parts of the world. It was Luke’s creation of course. After all, he was the tech guy. He wouldn’t harp on the fact that he had nothing else to do while stuck in this house.

“Sam can have Germany, and I’ll take France. The French women are much hotter.”

Sam rolled his eyes as Zach continued.

“Someone needs to take on England because Hash and Jock are gone putting the fear of the First Lord in a couple of rogue Vamps who dared to call Atlanta home.”

“Dinna worry. My king has the UK covered.”

Luke watched Adair walk out from behind the globe that took up the center of the room and open a portal for first Zach, then Sam.

“What will you be taking?” Luke asked once the others were gone.

Adair seemed to think about it, but Luke was pretty sure he had already calculated the probabilities and knew where the most fighting would be. One thing he could attest to about the Fey: they were skilled fighters who loved to put those skills to work. Adair was no exception. He was a trained warrior through and through.

After a moment Adair smiled at Luke. “I believe I will take the West Coast. These creatures seem tae like California these days. Perhaps it is all the movie stars.”

Luke rolled his eyes. “Why are you still standing here then?”

Adair just nodded once and grabbed a handheld tracker from the table before opening a portal and walking through. The handheld device was something else Luke had created. It was basically a smaller version of the globe that showed were every dark magical being in the world was.

Adair had no longer left when Riya and Logan walked into the room. Luke tried to overlook their rushed expressions as well as the adoring look Riya shot Logan before she turned to Luke and her expression changed to one of chagrin.

“Sorry we’re late. Where do you need us?”

Although there were several spots on the globe still lit up, he knew better than to try to send them to separate locations. Logan had made it all too clear that Riya would not be fighting without him at her side. Luke couldn’t say he blamed him.

“Um, it looks like Africa’s pretty lit up.”

“Africa?” Riya asked.

Logan was already shaking his head. “Nay. I will no’ be taking her tae Demon country. They are damned anyway. Let the Darkness have them.”

Luke sighed. “I’m no more concerned about the Demon than anyone, but do you really want the Darkness getting stronger off Demonic magic?”

Logan’s expression didn’t change so Luke picked another spot that was heavy with activity. “How about Australia?”

“I didn’t think there were any Others in Australia,” Riya said.

“Of course there are Others there. Haven’t you heard of the Yowie? Not to mention there are all kinds of Others on every continent in the world.”

“Okay. Australia it is. And for the record, no, I haven’t heard of a Yowie, but I’m good with that.”

Luke didn’t have a chance to reply before Logan opened a portal, and they stepped through. Luke just looked at the globe. There were still too many lights. One would be extinguished only to have another take its place. It was as though the Darkness had begun a full frontal attack on this world in recent weeks, and he didn’t know what else to do about it.

He was pretty certain the Darkness were using the magic taken from the different Other species and blending it with their own to take on the aspects of that species. It explained how they were able to change their shapes so easily and definitely made it harder to fight them. When an opponent could turn into anything from a bat to a Giant, it made defending against them virtually impossible. He wanted so much to join the fight but couldn’t risk it. Just the thought of running into a woman had him shuddering.

The doorbell rang. That had him cocking his head. His wards should have warned him long before someone reached the house. Hell, they should have stopped anyone from moving farther than the front gate. Granted, he wasn’t the most skilled spell caster, but even Angels were taught how to ward something, and he had added a little something extra to his wards. How could someone have disabled them?

Well, he knew the answer to that. They were strong enough to break them. Why wasn’t he alarmed once the wards were broken? Because the person had not only broken through his wards but had also disable them so completely he didn’t know about it. That person would have to be überpowerful.

Enough speculating. Luke pulled up the surveillance cameras on his computer screen. A girl stood on his front step facing the door. As he watched, she reached forward and pushed the doorbell again. Luke stood up and paced the floor as he thought of all the nefarious reasons a seemingly innocent girl would break through his wards and be standing on his front step right now. The only logical explanation would be that she wasn’t a girl at all. The Darkness were cunning, so cunning that they could change into the form of anything, even a girl, to trick Luke into falling into their trap.

He looked back at the computer screen. He couldn’t see the girl’s face because the camera was slightly behind her, but she couldn’t have stood over five foot two. She had a slender build, and judging by her size, Luke wouldn’t put her at more than thirteen or fourteen. There was no way a child could have made it through his wards. No, this was definitely the enemy literally knocking at his door.

The Darkness didn’t know about his aversion to those of the opposite sex, though. Anyone else would just think the girl was lost or in some other way in need of assistance, but Luke wouldn’t answer the door to any female. His thinking it through gave him an advantage. He knew this couldn’t be just some girl. This had to be a trick, and all the Darkness were men.

Luke smiled as there was a knock on the door. Finally, he would get to see some action. He ran over to the closet and threw open the doors. It had been converted into a weapons room as soon as they had moved in. He grabbed his sword and sheath and belted it to his hip before racing down the stairs. His sword, like everything else from the Kingdom, moved to the plane in between once Luke was no longer touching it, just like his wings, and would only come to this plane when called on.

This Darkness chose the wrong tactic for attack. The creature thought he would have the element of surprise. Imagine how shocked he will be to find Luke’s sword waiting for him instead. As he reached the bottom of the stairs, the doorbell rang again with a hurried knock following it. Impatient this creature is. Luke laughed at his own Yoda imitation. He was used to keeping himself entertained.

Before the Darkness could knock again, Luke pulled his sword from its sheath and held it at the ready. He knew how fast these creatures were and wouldn’t give them the opportunity to throw any spells before he had a chance to dispatch them. In one movement, he turned the knob, flung open the door, and swung his sword toward the being’s neck.

He had never been more mortified in his life, and never had he been more thankful for having such quick reflexes. As it was, he was just able to stop his sword before it passed through the neck of the woman—not a girl after all—standing in front of him. He was also able to take several quick steps back, avoiding any possibility of contact; then, he slammed the door in her face, backed up several steps just to be on the safe side, and stood there dumbfounded. How could that woman have made it through his wards?

The Darkness Excerpt.

I realize I’m running somewhat behind on releasing the excerpt for The Darkness. I swear it’s only because I’ve been super busy getting The Cursed ready. Anyway, I’ve included the first chapter for your perusal. For those of you who haven’t already gotten it, The Darkness is available for preorder and will be released Tuesday, October 13th.

Also, I wanted to give you a brief update on the rest of the series. The Cursed is with my editor, and I will be working on getting it available for preorder this week with a release date set for the last week in November (probably Tuesday the 24th, but I have to double-check with my editor and make sure that jives with her schedule.) I’ve already begun writing The Light and it’s still scheduled for a December release.

Also, I know I said this before but thought it was worth mentioning again. I will be posting an Avery Tywella Short Story on here on Tuesday in celebration of The Darkness being released. I will go ahead and warn everyone that Avery and Jared are not in the new series for first few books because they’re busy with their own stuff. Sorry, no spoilers. I will also warn that I changed up my writing style for this series. Instead of being written strictly in first person, this series is split between first person and third person. I have to say, at first I wasn’t sure I would like it, but soon found out it was fun to be able to write what the fellas are thinking.

Have a great weekend everyone and I really hope you enjoy the excerpt!!

Chapter One

Foreboding filled my gut as I rushed to pack supplies into my bag. I hoped I wouldn’t be gone long, but if I was, I could buy any necessities. Otherwise, I really only needed two things—my gun and the spellbook I had already added to the pack. I would only use the latter as a last resort. None of the spells would work on the being I was trying to find anyway, except to make him stronger.

My aunt’s words ran through my mind warning me that it was only a matter of time before they came here and that I would need to be prepared when they did. We were the only ones who knew what they were and possibly the only ones who could stop them.

Why did she have to die on me? Why did they wait until I was alone to come here? I would have been quite contented to train another to do the fighting once I was a more experienced Witch. Instead, I was running off to fight a fight I didn’t want but had been preparing for as long as I could remember. It was better when I was younger and still had the delusion of my aunt’s protection to soothe me, but she was gone now. A plane crash had taken her from me. The strongest Witch I knew, but even magic had its limitations. She was the one who taught me that. Though we could regenerate our cells to stay youthful for millennia if we choose, we couldn’t put our body back together after it had been practically incinerated in a fiery explosion.

I couldn’t harp on that now. I should have already been in my car. I should have already been there, fighting, protecting others like myself, and preventing this world from going to hell. My hand shook as I put the key in the ignition, and I pulled it away before taking a deep breath and steeling my resolve. I would do this. I could do this. I had to. Despite my attempts at bravado, my mind turned to other options: I could run. There were other dimensions out there similar to this one. I could use the stored magic I possessed to open a portal to one of them. It would give me time. How much, I wasn’t sure, but I was sure it would be more than I would have if I started this car.

Could I leave others to die? The Humans on this plane were very strong with their advanced technology. They should be able to wipe any threat off the face of this planet, but I knew they wouldn’t stand a chance. A spell beat technology every day of the week, and this adversary undoubtedly had enough magic to demolish this entire plane, after they took what they wanted.

I looked at my cabin getting smaller in the rearview window as I drove down the long, winding dirt road that would take me to civilization. The sky was just starting to turn the dark purple that would soon become dawn, leaving an otherworldly glow on my home. I would miss my cabin in the swamps terribly. I rolled down my windows and listened to the frogs, cicadas, and crickets serenade me on my journey away from my sanctuary. For just a moment, a smile graced my face as I pretended I was on my back porch watching the fireflies and swatting the mosquitos.

A deer crossed the road in front of me, pulling me out of my reverie. I hit the brakes and came to a stop as he, too, paused just on the side of the road facing me. He wasn’t looking into my headlights, though. He was looking directly at me. I stared back into his black eyes for a moment before nodding. His head lowered slightly, showing his full set of antlers. I smiled and started on my way again as he ran back into the forest. The smile stayed in place as I continued on my way. There was nothing quite like a good, old-fashioned omen to put things into perspective.

I headed east, leaving Louisiana behind, passing through the southern tips of Mississippi and Alabama, and entering Florida. Jacksonville is in the northeast part of the state, within minutes of the Atlantic to the east and Georgia to the north.

When I pulled into the drive of the historical home that belonged to the local Coven Mother, I could feel the anxiety and trepidation leaking out from within. They were scared, and they deserved to be. I took a deep breath and looked at my reflection in the mirror. I worked on my expression until none of my own fear showed. The Mother would still know, but I would make sure the members of her coven didn’t. I was their last hope after all. I should be some badass who was used to killing beings like this every day, not someone who was barely a woman and used to spending her days as a hermit in the Louisiana bayou. My aunt’s words resonated through my brain. “You only get one chance to make a first impression, Riya love.”

As I stood on the porch, I stopped to feel the wards on the house. They were strong, which was to be expected at a Coven Mother’s home. I raised my hand to knock but didn’t get the opportunity before a girl answered and ushered me into the house. She smiled softly at me, and I realized she wasn’t a girl at all. She had the stature of a young teen, but her face made her appear about my age, probably in her mid-twenties. She was short, though. I was rather tall for a woman at five nine, and she was a good head shorter than me. Her olive-toned skin and dark hair and eyes were the exact opposite of my blonde hair and light green eyes. Luckily, my aunt had taught me an easy spell as a child that protected my skin against the sun. Summers in Louisiana can be brutal, and with my naturally pasty complexion I would have spent them as red as a lobster. As it was, I had a fairly decent tan, but it did nothing to hide the freckles covering the bridge of my nose.

“It is nice to finally meet you, Riya. I’m Kit.”

I looked at the girl in front of me and put forth an effort not to ask her how long she had known I was coming. I was only notified this morning that I was needed and came straight here.

The woman smiled at me. “I forget myself sometimes. I knew of your coming weeks ago.” She tapped her temple with her forefinger. “I also told the Coven Mother of our impending need of you. I didn’t tell her everything, though.”

“What would everything consist of?” I figured it didn’t hurt to find out what she knew. If she was truly a psychic, she knew a whole hell of a lot.

She moved closer to me. “Where this creature came from, where you came from, and who this being used to be.”

I wasn’t sure what she meant by the last part, but apparently she knew more about me than I did her. Before I could ask her to elaborate, she stepped past the short wall that separated the entryway from the living room and curtsied for the Mother.

Dotti Lee, the Coven Mother of the Florida/Georgia convergence, sat in a recliner facing me. She took only a second to evaluate me, and if the sour look was an indication, she found me lacking. I took longer in my perusal of her. She had the appearance of a woman in her mid-twenties with dark-brown hair and brown eyes dark enough to be considered black.

Her magic told me she was easily a couple hundred years older than she appeared, though. She had at least one ring on each finger, each containing some kind of stone. My gut told me one of those stones held a store of power. She likely wore so many in an attempt to hide which one held the power. Plus, natural stones already hold energy within them and having that many acted as a barrier so most wouldn’t be able to tell she carried the extra magic.

I wasn’t most. I have always been more attuned to magic than others. It was both my gift and my curse. My ability and the training I’ve went through made me particularly ideal for this job.

Since the Mother had yet to address me, I figured I’d get this ball rolling. I didn’t drive more than five hundred miles for posturing. “The being isn’t here, so why don’t you tell me where he is and I can be on my way.”

“He has killed five of ours in as many days. You will treat me with respect or not at all.”

I shrugged. “I was under the impression you called me. I’m not here to disrespect you, just to do what I need to and return to my home. You say he killed five of yours. Have you heard of any others from the other covens?”

Technically, she hadn’t called me. She had instead contacted the Witch’s council, and it just happened that I knew a Wizard who was married to a member, and he contacted me. He knew enough of my past to know this was a serious issue.

“I spoke with the Coven Mother in Atlanta, and she had informed me three of her Witches have perished. I have not been in contact with any other covens.”

“I don’t feel anything in the immediate area. I’ll go to where the others were killed and see if I can track him from there.”

“Then you will need to go to Savannah.”

“The others were killed in Georgia? Why was I sent here then?”

“I am their Coven Mother. It is only through my approval you will proceed.”

Don’t do it. Don’t do it. I rolled my eyes despite my attempt not to. Do you know what the worst thing is about people with power? Power. For some, once they get a taste of it, it’s never enough. That’s what started this whole mess in the first place. It seemed Dotti Lee liked to make sure everyone knew she was in charge. It didn’t really surprise me that her coven included Savannah. There weren’t a lot of Witches in this area until you got closer to Atlanta. She probably governed every Witch in a hundred-mile radius. That didn’t mean she couldn’t have allowed me to hunt the Darkness first and check in with her afterward.

“I’ll be sure to tell the family of the next Witch who is killed by the Darkness that I would have possibly been able to stop it if the Coven Mother wasn’t so worried about her position in the situation.” I didn’t bother waiting for her response. I knew where I needed to be now, and Savannah was a two-hour ride from here.

Kit stopped me as I left the house. “Be careful, Riya, and don’t be afraid to ask for help.”

I just nodded. I wasn’t sure if she was talking about her help or someone else’s, but I supposed I would find out.

 

As I exited the interstate in Savannah, I could feel the dark magic of the Darkness calling me. It was pulling me, telling me where he was, and I allowed it to guide me like a homing beacon. When I reached the downtown area, I parked and started on foot. I didn’t want to be stuck in my car if I saw him, and I could tell he was close now. His magic was practically suffocating me.

That was the problem. I could feel the dark magic and knew it was coming from somewhere nearby, but I couldn’t actually pinpoint it because the entire area was saturated with it. I knew it wasn’t really. This being had so much magic that it was leaking off him in waves, and everywhere he’d been and the immediate area still held the residual.

As I reached the end of the street, I looked both left and right but couldn’t tell which way had a stronger magic content. I closed my eyes and took a deep breath while resting my hand on the butt of my gun. I did my best to close out my surroundings and concentrate on the magic. At the same moment I realized it was strongest behind me, a scream rang out. My gun was out, and I was running before I could second-guess myself.

As I approached where the scream had come from, a huge blond man ran out the door of what looked like a bar. I immediately recognized that his magic was unlike any I had seen before, and I never forget a magic. Given his kilt, I guessed he was Fey. He held a sword that looked as long as I was tall, and the look on his face had me stopping in my tracks. He was going to kill someone, and I couldn’t stop the prayer I sent up to the Goddess that it wasn’t me. The Darkness appeared behind the Fey and reached for him.

“Behind you.”

He turned in time to swing his sword at the being, removing one of his hands. The Darkness turned black and seemed to melt into goo, only to reemerge to the Fey’s left. The Fey reached into his pocket, pulled out a small satchel, and was about to throw it at the being.

“Don’t! No magic. It’ll only make him stronger.”

It was too late, the Darkness absorbed the satchel and again reached for the Fey. His hand had regrown already, but before he could touch him, the Fey swung his sword at the being’s neck. The Darkness had already begun melting again, so the sword passed right through him. He reappeared directly in front of me, and my training kicked in, causing me to take a step back and lift my gun at his head.

I paused briefly as I looked at him. Of course, my aunt had explained what they looked like. The being in front of me looked just like a man in his mid-twenties. The eyes are what gave away what he had become. They must have been blue naturally, but the high amount of magic within the being caused them to appear illuminated.

The thing that made me pause wasn’t my curiosity about what one of the Darkness looked like but because he looked familiar. I knew that I knew him but couldn’t quite grasp the memory. He saw the gun, and his eyes widened slightly as he realized what it was. Immediately he turned to blackness and began melting again, and I knew there was no sense in firing, but the Fey had chosen that moment to stab him.

Unfortunately, the blade of his sword passed straight through the being, and I watched as, in slow motion, it continued into me. It seemed as though the entire length of that enormous blade slid into my upper stomach, and I could actually feel it break through as it continued out my back.

Huh. I’ve never been stabbed before. I would have thought it would hurt more. Perhaps I was in shock.