Articles tagged with: romance fantasy

More Birth Month Freebies

Birth Month

Heart of the Sun HoW 2Even though my birthday is over I’m still celebrating. I’m partying the entire month because a gal only turns forty once in her life, and it’s a big deal to me!

I’m also really excited about Heart of the Sun, which goes live everywhere eBooks are sold on Monday, May 25. Sunday is the last day to pick up a copy at the discounted price of $.99 because on Monday the price shoots up to $2.99. If you haven’t grabbed a copy yet, I hope you will to help me celebrate by picking up a copy and telling a friend. Here’s where you can find the links for Heart of the Sun:

Amazon

Amazon US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands,Mexico, Australia, India, Brazil

iBooks

Kobo Reader

Smashwords

All Romance eBooks

And now, here are the books you can find free on Amazon this week and the time period during which you can grab a copy at no charge to you:

Two Weeks and Other Periods of Decay from 5/24-5/29

Amazon, UK, Canada, Australia, Brazil, Mexico, France, Italy, SpainGermany,Netherlands, India

Heart and Home from 5/28-5/31

AmazonUKCanadaMexicoIndiaGermanyJapanFranceItalyBrazil,

Happy Birth Month Event!

Birth Month

I am one of those people who starts talking about my birthday three months before it arrives because celebrating the fact that I am here on Earth is a huge deal to me. I love having birthdays. I don’t even care that it means I’m getting older, or that this year I’m turning forty on the 22nd. I’m not afraid of forty–I hear it’s the new twenty. I also love getting presents, and this year I’ve already gotten some pretty awesome gifts from the people who love me.

Heart of the Sun HoW 2I wanted to spend this entire month celebrating my new twenty with all the people who continue to make it possible for me to live my dream. To kick off the celebration, I set the pre-order price on my upcoming book, Heart of the Sun, as low as Amazon, Kobo and iBooks will allow me to go in price. Through May 25th, Heart of the Sun is available for just $.99, and then on release day it will shoot up to $2.99. Now is a great time to pick up a copy and help me spread the word about it.

But the celebrating doesn’t stop there. Throughout the entire month of May there will be one of my books free on Amazon at all times. Starting now… I will send out notice each week to let you know what’s free how long you have to grab it before the price goes back up. You can also stay on top of the freebies by following the link to my Amazon author page and clicking the “Follow” link under my picture. Save the page and return each week to find out which book is free.

goblin market updated coverRight now The Goblin Market is free through midnight on Saturday, May 9. If you don’t already have a copy of this book, now’s a great time to snatch on for your Kindle or Kindle reader app. Don’t forget to stay tuned to the site for announcement on the next free book, and please help me spread the word.

I hope you’ll join me in celebrating the big 4-0! Not a day goes by that I am not truly grateful to have the opportunity to do the one and only thing I’ve wanted to do with my life: tell stories.

Sorrow’s Peak Audiobook is Now Available

Sorrows Peak square

Sorrows Peak squareThe adventure continues beyond the Edgelands, as Lorelei, Mad Finn the Reckless and Brendolowyn Ravenstorm journey northeast, through the Alvarii underground and toward Great Sorrow’s Peak, where the horns of a god await to be reclaimed and the spirits of the half-U’lfer of Dunvarak to be woken. Struggling with emotions he should never have been given in the first place, Bren must come to terms with his dislike for Finn, and swallow his jealousy as he watches the most arrogant man in the world fall in love with the woman Bren still believes should be his. Left behind to discover a purpose all his own, Vilnjar travels north to learn the fate of his people and find the sister he left behind, but far more awaits him in the Edgelands than he ever dreamed would be his to claim.

Narrated by the incredibly talented Veronica Giguere, the audiobook version of Sorrow Peak, Serpent of Time Book 2 is now available on select retailers.

iTunes, Audible, Amazon

If audiobooks aren’t your thing, you can grab the ebook version of Sorrow’s Peak from Amazon

Amazon, Amazon UK, Amazon Canada, Amazon Australia, Amazon Germany, Amazon France, Amazon Spain, Amazon Mexico, Amazon Brazil, Amazon Italy & Amazon India

Or you can pick up a paperback copy from Amazon.com

Free Book Weekend: Sorrow’s Peak

Sorrow's Peak Cover New

Sorrow's Peak Cover NewIt’s FREE book weekend again, everyone! Woohoo! From 9/26 through midnight on 9/27 you can grab a copy of one of my books absolutely free from Amazon.

This weekend my newest book, Sorrow’s Peak (Serpent of Time Book 2) is available to download from Amazon for ZERO dollars.

All you need in order to download and read this book is an Amazon account and the Kindle or Kindle App (which you can download to your smartphone, tablet, Mac or PC at no cost.) Follow the link below, add Sorrow’s Peak to your cart and check out. The book will appear in your Kindle library for you to read at your leisure.

Grab a copy of Sorrow’s Peak this weekend from Amazon!

 

About Sorrow’s Peak

Once a princess of Leithe, Lorelei was exiled from her homeland and led to the city of Dunvarak in the tundra of Rimian. The people of Dunvarak call her Light of Madra, and nearly every one of them has a story about the white hand of light who saved them from death during the War of Silence.

She is their savior, and being a savior is no small task.

Charged with retrieving the fractured horns of the U’lfer god, Llorveth, from a long-dead dragon’s treasure hoard in the belly of Great Sorrow’s Peak, the half-bred U’lfer believe with the horns in hand they will finally be able to embrace the dormant wolf, and rise to stand beside their full-blooded brethren in the coming war with men.

But there is more to Lorelei’s plight than simply retrieving the mystical horns of a silent god. She and her companions, Finn, an U’lfer warrior she shares a mate bond with, and a half-Alvarii mage named Brendolowyn, have made this journey before, and unless they can figure out where they went wrong in past cycles, time threatens to repeat itself for eternity.

Some News and a FREE BOOK!

hearth and home audiobook

edgelanders and sorrow's peakThat headline feels like an old Little Caesar’s Pizza commercial. Two pizzas and a back rub! Two pizzas and a perm! Two pizzas and some chattering teeth.  Okay, I’ll stop… because it’s early at my house and I’m still drinking coffee and while it’s always time for pizza, I don’t want anyone to get the wrong idea, and honestly I don’t think you need a perm. No one needs a perm. What I do think you need is a free book, but I’ll talk more about that in a minute.

First, I wanted to talk to you about my decision to pull The Serpent of Time into Amazon’s Select program for 90 days to see if I can take advantage of some those Select-exclusive promotional perks to reach more readers. The Select program allows authors to do things like run free day promotions and countdown deals to slash prices. It also grants readers in the Kindle Unlimited program to take advantage of the Unlimited Kindle Library, borrowing as many books as they can stuff into their Kindle before it starts crying, “WARNING! WARNING! WE ARE REACHING CAPACITY!”

paperback editionNow what does this mean for you as a reader? Basically, the books in the Serpent of Time Series (Edgelanders and Sorrow’s Peak) will only be available for eReaders through Amazon for at least the next 90 days. What if you read on an Apple device, you ask? I read on my iPad, but I also have the Kindle app for cases just like this. You can always download the free Kindle app to your device and take advantage of free days when the books are on promotion, and they will be on promotion very soon.

The books will still be available in print (signed copies are for sale right here on this site) and audiobook. I hope to have some news about the Sorrow’s Peak audiobook, which will be narrated by the incredibly talented Veronica Giguere just like the first book in the series.

Today and tomorrow my paranormal romance novel Heart and Home is free on Amazon. Meaning you don’t have to belong to some special Kindle Unlimited program or Amazon Prime to download a copy to your device. You can jump right over there, login to your Amazon account and download Heart and Home RIGHT NOW and it will never cost you a single penny.  This applies to Amazon stores worldwide, so no matter where you live, you can grab your copy free today or tomorrow! This offer expires at midnight in your area September 21, so grab one now!!

Be on the lookout for more free days! Free days are a great way to fill your device with books, even when your budget doesn’t have room.

Heart and Home Amazon Worldwide links:

AmazonAmazon UKAmazon CanadaAmazon MexicoAmazon IndiaAmazon GermanyAmazon JapanAmazon FranceAmazon ItalyAmazon Brazil,

Sorrow’s Peak Is HERE!

Sorrow's Peak Cover New

Sorrow's Peak Cover NewYou’ve waited for months, but the wait is finally over. Sorrow’s Peak: Serpent of Time Book Two is FINALLY here!

Once a princess of Leithe, Lorelei was exiled from her homeland and led to the city of Dunvarak in the tundra of Rimian. The people of Dunvarak call her Light of Madra, and nearly every one of them has a story about the white hand of light who saved them from death during the War of Silence.

She is their savior, and being a savior is no small task. 

Charged with retrieving the fractured horns of the U’lfer god, Llorveth, from a long-dead dragon’s treasure hoard in the belly of Great Sorrow’s Peak, the half-bred U’lfer believe with the horns in hand they will finally be able to embrace the dormant wolf, and rise to stand beside their full-blooded brethren in the coming war with men. 

But there is more to Lorelei’s plight than simply retrieving the mystical horns of a silent god. She and her companions, Finn, an U’lfer warrior she shares a mate bond with, and a half-Alvarii mage named Brendolowyn, have made this journey before, and unless they can figure out where they went wrong in past cycles, time threatens to repeat itself for eternity. 

The adventure and the romance continue in Sorrow’s Peak!

Available in paperback from Amazon and everywhere eBooks are sold!

eBook

Amazon, Amazon UK, Amazon Canada, Amazon Australia, Amazon Germany, Amazon France, Amazon Spain, Amazon Mexico, Amazon Brazil, Amazon Italy & Amazon India

Apple iBooks

Barnes & Noble

Kobo

Scribd

Smashwords

Paperback

Amazon

Signed paperback copies available right here through the site:





If you’re new the Serpent of Time series, you can currently pick up the first book in the series, Edgelanders, for just $.99!

 

There’s Still Time to Pre-Order Sorrow’s Peak!

Sorrow's Peak Cover New

Sorrow's Peak Cover NewIn just four days Sorrow’s Peak will be here. I know I keep saying this, but I am beyond excited about sending another piece of the Serpent of Time story into the world.

As you gear up to download your pre-ordered eBook, or sit patiently beside your mailbox waiting for your paperback to arrive, you might be wondering what happens after book two. That would be a valid question, and while I know what happens I can’t exactly tell you because… well… SPOILERS! I can, however, tell you this: Book three is in the early planning stages. It will probably not come out as quickly as Sorrow’s Peak did. I had written both Edgelanders and much of Sorrow’s Peak successively, with a good portion of Sorrow’s Peak in the bag when I set Edgelanders free into the world. Book three, which is still untitled at this time, is still in the crock pot and these books tend to be LONG, so it’s going to take a bit of time to make sure everything’s just right.

I will begin official writing on book three on November 1, as it will be my 2014 NaNoWriMo project. I hope you’ll all rally behind me and cheer me on during the month of November, as support during the 30 days of writing madness is always welcomed and appreciated. I will post regular updates throughout November, keeping everyone informed about the process, so if you’re into that sort of thing I hope you’ll check in with the blog often.

So what am I doing now beyond planning, you might ask? Well, I’m working on a couple of other projects I’d really like to get wrapped up before November dances into view. I’ve learned lessons over the years on not talking about what I’m working on until I have the finished first draft in hand, so I won’t taunt you with any details at the moment. Just know I am working on some things and they are exciting to me and I can’t wait until I can talk to you about them.

That being said, I hope you’re as excited as I am for the release of Sorrow’s Peak. If you haven’t already pre-ordered your copy, you can do that at one of these fine online venues for just $4.99. It will deliver to your eReading device on Tuesday!

AmazonAmazon CanadaAmazon UK
Smashwords

Apple

Kobo

You can also order signed paperbacks right here on my site and I will ship them directly to you from my house with loving words of adoration inscribed inside!

I know I keep saying this, but I really can’t wait to share this book with you. The Serpent of Time series is a true labor of love, and I can’t wait for November to get here so I can rally my favorite people together and send them on the next leg of their adventure.

Sorrow’s Peak: Introduction

Sorrow's Peak Cover New

As promised yesterday, here is the full introduction… The first 4,000 words of Sorrow’s Peak. The rest of the book is ready to launch on September 9, 2014. If you like what you read, don’t forget to pre-order. You can find details for that right here!

SORROW’S PEAK

Introduction

Sorrow's Peak Cover New“It’s been three days, Your Majesty.” He said the word majesty with deliberate disdain, watching the king’s face with sharp, excited green eyes. The prince grinned just a little and stretched his long legs further beneath the table. He perched both arms atop the ledge, as if that lip of wood alone held him aloft. The casual position lent an appearance of laziness and indifference, but nothing could have been further from the truth.

His sorceress stood at his back, arms crossed, head tilted. Strategically in front of the door, which she blocked with magic so they might not be disturbed while interrogating the king, the length of her silver hair hung around her shoulders and the muscles of her mouth flexed tight with superiority.

“I’ve given you appropriate time to grieve your losses, and now I want answers. Why did she do it? What did she know that was worth dying for?”

King Aelfric of Leithe, one of the proudest men in the Middle Kingdoms, was little more than a mere shell of the arrogant monarch he’d been only five days earlier, lifted his embittered stare with surprising alacrity, but there was nothing pleasant about the leer hidden beneath the untrimmed hairs of his mustache. His pride unbroken, Trystay could see he was on the very edge. The man was horrified and more afraid than he had probably ever been in his fifty-nine years.

How quickly the mighty fall, he thought, his own cynical grin stretching into a tight, pinched line of disgust.

A kinder man would have shown more compassion, considering everything the king lost in the blink of an eye, but Trystay was in no way kind, nor was he compassionate. Such trifles were the attributes of lesser men and kings, and he knew that were the boot upon the other foot, were he in Aelfric’s position, the king of Leithe would spare him no quarter, offer no kindness. From time to time he caught the king glaring at him, and he knew what dark and twisted wishes the man plotted behind those steely eyes. The barest hint of the warrior he’d once been stared back at the prince from time to time, but he’d lost too much to form even a convincing scowl or challenge.

Sorrow… It was a wonderful thing. Grief bred weakness, where once strength dwelt.

“Yes,” Aelfric nodded, the word barely leaving his lips. His voice grew hollow as he went on to confess, “You’ve been very generous, Trystay, offering three days so I might grieve, but it feels as if it’s been a lifetime, and I still know not why she did what she did. Why she betrayed me.”

“Then perhaps it would be best to set your grief aside and act, Sire.” That last word he spoke with unbridled distaste, as though the mere acknowledgment of the other man’s royal blood was ash on his tongue, but Aelfric didn’t seem to notice. “There is little time to dwell on sorrows when a man has a target for his frustrations. Your daughter…”

“If it is to Lorelei you refer, that abomination is not my daughter,” the king hissed, showing signs of rage for the first time in days. “I would have been a smarter man to poison the seed while it still festered in the womb.” And then the grief returned, unshed tears swelling in the man’s eyes as he thought to his wife. “I spared her for her mother’s sake, because I loved her more than life itself. Oh Ygritte,” he moaned, lowering his head. The sound evoked an impatient eye-roll from Trystay, who drew his legs from beneath the table and sat up straight. “The things we do for love.”

“Pull yourself together, man!”

The prince’s flat palm came down atop the table, the blunt force of it tingling through his hand almost painfully and the sound startling the king in front of him before he was able to slip into another pathetic spell of sobbing over a woman who’d clearly been plotting against him since he’d taken her to bed on their wedding night.

At his back, Deallora did not move, but stood stoic and proud, staring straight ahead as if in deep trance.

“Your woman betrayed you, fool! And from the looks of it, it was a betrayal planned long before its execution.” Trystay pushed his chair away from the table, his long legs rising as he stood to tower over the king. “Do you really think she took her life out of guilt over the things she’s done?”

Trembling lower lip, eyes red-rimmed and irritated, Aelfric lifted his head again, shaking it in disbelief. “I was good to her,” he stammered. “I gave her everything…”

“You hunted her down like a dog when she ran from you, killed her husband and made her watch!”

“She was mine. Promised to me, just as Lorelei was promised to you, but she…”

“But she had other plans, just like her daughter. I will not stand by and be made the fool, and I will not make the same mistakes you made.”

“Wh—what are you saying?”

“I will do that which you did not have the courage to do. Ygritte should have been culled for her crimes against you. Both her and the mutant offspring she carried inside her should have put down like the rabid dogs she chose to keep company with.”

“You’ll kill her?”

“Does she deserve any less?”

Tilting back his head, Trystay felt the jostling of his own hair as it slid down the center of his spine. For a moment he closed his eyes, knowing that timing was everything. Aelfric’s grief made him weak, a liability if ever there was one, and though he’d shown definite signs of animosity toward the child he raised as his own in the days since his wife was discovered dead in her sitting room, the poisoned cup shattered on the floor around the golden strands of her lovely hair, the unexpected blow of her suicide broke the king beyond repair.

There was madness behind every utterance, rumor spreading through the castle he’d been muttering rather often to himself, or rather to his queen, as if she walked beside him as he paced the magically blocked corridor outside the wing in which Trystay’s men kept watch over him. Senseless phrases, oh how he prattled on, they said. The king was mad, no longer fit to rule, and though he could have called for reinforcements, taken the city by force and placed himself upon the throne in Leithe, Trystay had other plans.

“She betrayed me,” Trystay went on. “She made me look like a jester in front of my men, my father and everyone in both kingdoms. I nearly fell for her harlotry when she threw herself at me, but now I know she would have likely slit my throat while I slept. For that I will do to her the very thing you were too sodden with lust for her mother to carry out.”

Head shaking, eyes squinting as the king tried to make sense of his threat, Aelfric murmured something that didn’t quite reach Trystay’s ears.

Tilting his head almost thoughtfully, the grin that wrenched the left-hand side of his face was hideous and triumphant.

“I will not reward her for her betrayal with a crown, but hunt her down,” he said rather simply, “and when I find her, I’m going to kill her for making me look like a fool.”

An eerie softness washed over the king’s face, smoothing the lines and wrinkles as he held his head up high and said, “She’s just a girl. Despite her nature, she was a good girl… Surely there are other ways… I made promises to her mother…”

Squinting with disgust, Trystay’s head began to shake, but his glare never wavered from Aelfric’s face. “She’s not a girl, you doddering imbecile. She’s a wolf in sheep’s clothing, a beast no better than the dogs in my hunting party before her U’lfer tore them to pieces and scattered their remains across the Edgelands. I won’t make the same mistakes you made, Your Majesty. I will never take that traitor to my bed, or call her my wife.”

“But Ygritte…”

“Ygritte is dead, and her last act before she took her own life was to steal from you the only legitimate heir to your kingdom and hide it. You need to find your daughter, Your Majesty. Your true daughter, not the U’lfer bastard you attempted to taint my family line with, and when you do, she and everything you hold dear become mine.”

“You…” Aelfric shook his head, confused and disoriented. “You would still honor the terms of our alliance, still tie our houses together and forgive…”

“Forgive?” Trystay laughed, the boisterous clamor of his mock-amusement ringing through the long halls so loudly several servants on the other side of the palace were later said to have heard it. “I don’t forgive, Sire, and I never forget.”

“But you said…”

“I said you will give the girl to me, along with everything else you have. Your crown, your castle, your men… They’re mine now, and if you utter even the slightest word of protest, I’ll gut you where you stand and take it all by force. Your people will know such suffering under my rule.”

For the briefest of moments the monarch in Aelfric, the warmongering conqueror who’d almost single-handedly wiped out the U’lfer race, rose to the surface and he straightened his shoulders in defiance. “What’s stopping you then? Why don’t you just kill me and get it over with?”

“Don’t fool yourself for even a moment it is a kindness,” he assured him.

“Then be a man and do it. If you want my kingdom, you’ll have to take it by force because I’ll never hand it over to you.”

“We shall see,” he shrugged, then called over his shoulder to the guards posted just outside the door. With a clatter the doors opened and two guards strode in, heads held high as they focused their attention on the prince.

“You called, my lord?”

“I did, Kellen.” He grinned back over his shoulder at Aelfric. “Were my orders carried out?”

“Yes, my lord. The royal adviser and the king’s steward have both been tended to.”

“Tended to?” Aelfric’s glare shot upward in dismay. “What does that mean, tended to?”

“I believe they suffered an unfortunate accident, did they not?”

“Most unfortunate, Highness,” Kellen confirmed.

Quivering lips spilled anxious words into the air. The king of Leithe leaned back in his chair, flabbergasted to the point of speechlessness.

“I am to be your adviser in his stead,” Trystay announced. “And it is my advice that you draw up orders for your men.”

“Orders?”

“Yes, it’s time we finish what should have ended with the War of Silence.”

“I don’t…”

Eyes arcing toward the high ceiling overhead, he shook his head as if he couldn’t believe how daft the man in front of him was. “You’re sending troops into the Edgelands,” he explained. “Five thousand men to rout her out and burn that pitiful prison to the ground. With my help, you will finish what you started, put an end to the U’lfer once and for all, and when they’ve found that simpering bitch you tried to pawn off on me, they will drag her back here and we will bring her to justice for her crimes.”

Aelfric’s expression was indescribable, horror mingled with relief, guilt wrangling with self-righteousness and sparking strange light in his watery eyes. “And if I don’t?” he finally asked.

“Why wouldn’t you?” Trystay shrugged.

“Why would I?”

“Aelfric,” it felt good to dispense with the formality of a title he felt the king didn’t truly deserve. “You are an old man,” he pointed. “You’ve lost your wife and the only legitimate heir to a kingdom you can barely hold onto with those stiff, arthritic hands of yours. I am offering to help you, pledging my men to your cause. All I’m asking in return is that you bring back your daughter, your true daughter, and give me her hand so that when you die,” he paused for a moment, choosing his next words carefully, “and you will die sooner or later, old man, rule of your kingdom falls to me through our heirs. You see, I don’t want it to come to a fight. I want your men to follow me, to embrace and accept me because their dying king wishes his son-in-law to succeed him.”

“This…” he stammered. “This was your plan all along?”

Laughing softly, Trystay shook his head. “Oh, Aelfric, I couldn’t have planned this well if I’d tried. It’s all sort of fallen into play, hasn’t it? Now, what do you say? Do we have an accord, or are you really going to force my hand?”

“If I don’t agree?”

“I’m prepared to send word to Hofft, asking for reinforcement so we might take Leithe by force, but I’d rather not. I am already in the castle, the king under my guard. It would be bad for your people, don’t you think? I’d rather we work together,” he smiled, adding, “for the sake of your kingdom and its people.”

“I should never have offered her hand to you,” Aelfric spat, turning his head downward to stare at the table in front of him. “It was my mistake, inviting you here in the first place, thinking we could have peace.”

“Is what I’m offering you not peace?”

Scoffing, the king shook his head again and brought his eyes back up to meet with Trystay’s. “Were I a younger man…”

“But you’re not, are you?” He grinned. “You’re an old man, a spent warrior who can barely lift his sword arm above his head, much less charge into battle. Perhaps it would be better to kill you now and be done with it. You’re practically useless.”

“My men will never follow you, and the people will never acknowledge you if I do not give you my daughter.”

“I don’t need the acceptance of the dead,” he shrugged. “As I said, I’d rather not take Leithe by force, but I will if you push me to it.”

“You are your father’s son.” Aelfric lowered his head in withering defeat.

“I am my own man,” Trystay assured him. “So, what will it be? Will you work with me, or against me?”

“That is hardly a choice.”

“Perhaps not, but it is a choice. You should be grateful I’ve given you that much, considering the embarrassment you’ve caused me, the slight on my good name as you sought to marry me to a bastard mongrel that wasn’t even yours to give.”

He contemplated, lips moving over silent utterances as he cursed and shook his head. “I will do what you ask,” he gave in, “on one condition.”

“You’re hardly in a position to be demanding I yield to conditions, but I’ll take the bait. What is it you want?”

“I want two more days to mourn my wife, time enough to see her laid to rest in my family tomb.”

“The customary mourning period is three days,” Trystay pointed out. “Too much time has already been wasted. Your daughter is out there somewhere, victim of her mother’s cruel plot. She’s probably terrified, hoping against hope her father has the wits to send someone after her.”

Guiltily, Aelfric lowered his head and bit down on both lips with his teeth so he looked like a specter deep in thought. “Knowing she’s been laid to rest, I can focus more clearly on finding Mirien.”

“Two more days,” Trystay went on, “could be enough time for the slave you say was working with your queen to disappear with the girl entirely. Unless…” He pondered thoughtfully a moment, then turned distrusting stare back to Aelfric. “Unless you don’t want her to be found. Unless you were in on their plot from the start…”

“You think I wanted any of this?” the king railed, raising his voice in an attempt to startle Trystay, but the young prince was no stranger to angry kings and their senseless tirades. His own father was quite prone to throwing himself around, trying to intimidate anyone who dared challenge him—most especially his only son. And such an attempt might have worked had it come from his father, but Aelfric wasn’t even half the man King Derewend was. Maybe once, long ago, a man like Aelfric was frightening to behold in mid-tirade, but he was a man defeated. A man who’d lost everything he held dear faster than he could reach out his hand to try and hold it all in place.

“Are you deliberately trying to provoke me, Aelfric? Trying to see just how far I’m willing to go, because I can assure you that you will not like the outcome if that is the case. My sorceress…”

“No,” the king’s eyes widened as he glanced over Trystay’s shoulders at the lithe Ninvarii woman standing near the door. He shook his head, stammering, “Of c-course not. I… I want my daughter found,” he insisted. “I want her brought back and in my care where she belongs, and I want the head of the slave who took her.”

“Then call your priests and say goodbye to your queen before the sun rises on the morrow. At first light, we march men west into the Edgelands to find and retrieve that treacherous wretch you tried to force upon me. In the meanwhile, I will dispatch a search party to find your daughter before she disappears entirely.”

After a long silence, during which Trystay couldn’t tell if the man was thinking or simply staring down at his hands in his lap in hopes that some solution would magically manifest itself, Aelfric finally offered a meek nod. “Fine.”

“As you are drawing up orders for your men, you will also draw a clear decree summarizing Lorelei’s crimes. She is to be returned to Rivenn, unharmed, so she can face charges of treason against her king.”

“Yes,” Aelfric agreed. “Of course.”

“Are we in agreement on all matters presented?”

“Yes,” the king sighed, still refusing to lift his defeated head. “We have an agreement.”

“Excellent.” Trystay clapped his hands together in a triumphant gesture, the dry sound ringing through the quiet room. “I will dispatch the search party at once and bring your daughter back to you, Your Majesty, and when she is returned you will make formal announcement that we are to be wed.”

“As you wish.”

There was a lightness to Trystay’s step as he spun around and marched from the room, his guard and his stoic, Ninvarii sorceress falling in behind him and closing King Aelfric inside like a prisoner. They did not need to bar the door, his grief alone was enough to prohibit him from doing something foolish, and Trystay knew it.

Power.

It was a delicious thing, he thought, and for the first time in his life he knew his father would be proud of him for taking that which he wanted by manipulation, rather than force.

Soon he would hold enough power to rival his own father, not that lording over his father was part of his plan, but who knew, perhaps one day that was exactly what he’d do. The only way to prove oneself a man was to be the last one standing, even if the corpse he towered over was the corpse of his father.

In the meanwhile, it pleased him a great deal to imagine his father would praise his ingenuity and effort as well, saving a situation gone horribly wrong before it spun out of his hands entirely. He bettered the terms of their original agreement in ways they never imagined when he sent his son forth to Leithe.

Deallora followed him into his chambers, closing the doors behind her to provide them privacy from his men on the other side.

“Plotting vengeance against the U’lfer is not wise, Highness. My goddess…”

“Your goddess has done nothing for me, Dea.”

“She does all for you, Highness. She has shown me your path to greatness, and if you go after the U’lfer, if you pursue Lorelei…”

“You’re still jealous of her.” Trystay narrowed suspicious and taunting gaze over his sorceress, his lover, searching for the barest hint of animosity in her features.

“I am not jealous of her,” she insisted, though he sensed annoyance in her tone at the suggestion. “What is she to me? A threat? I already have you, Highness.”

Trystay surged forward so quickly the wrapping of his fingers around her throat caught the sorceress off-guard, but when he squeezed she made every effort not to show pain or surprise.

“You don’t have me,” he hissed. Three steps forward and he threw her back into the door with a rattling thud. He surged inward until the tip of his nose touched hers. Her proud, golden eyes did not widen, her body did not flinch, but remained stiff and indifferent to his abuse. “I have you. I own you, and don’t you ever forget it.”

He watched as her nostrils flared, her full, coral-traced lips twitching beneath her nose until the edges rose into defiant grin. “Ninvariin owns me.” She tilted her head, a thoughtful inspection as her cold eyes darted across his face. “I am on loan from Her, and don’t you ever forget it.”

And then she kissed him, the prince moaning softly in his throat as she shoved him backward through the room until he felt the mattress edge the backs of his knees. Taking a step away from him, Deallora brought up her hand in a fluid gesture, a surge of pale blue light dancing across the tips of her fingers before it passed between them with a playful force that sprawled him onto his back in the bed behind him.

She lingered at the edge of the bed, magic’s pale essence still flickering across the palm of her hand. “You must heed Her wisdom, Highness.” Lifting one knee onto the bed, she passed the other across the tops of his thighs and lowered herself onto his lap. “Everything is changing. There are events in the offing you cannot even begin to understand.”

The sorceress leaned forward, resting her hand on his shoulder as she descended until they were face to face. Even through the leather of his armor, he could feel her magic, the electric tingle of it invoking a series of delightful chills that raised the hairs on his arms, along the back of his neck. The energy trickled down his spine, but he did not shiver. He wouldn’t give her the satisfaction.

“Going after the U’lfer will not serve you,” she went on. “In time they will come to you. Lorelei herself will march into this castle and demand you give her back her sister.”

“I wait for no one.” He lifted his hands to her shoulders, fingertips squeezing so hard her olive skin would boast tiny, circular bruises later where his fingers pushed into her. “I send Aelfric’s men south to finish a job he should have finished long ago. The U’lfer will burn, Dea. Every last one of them.”

He surged upward, shifting her onto her back in a bold, deft maneuver and then rolling in to perch above her like a predator. Her long, exotic eyes did not waver from his face, the molten gold irises flashing with defiance. “It is a mistake, Your Highness. Let me show you what I’ve seen.”

“The only thing I want you to show me now is a little love.” He dipped his head inward, brushed lips across her chin. “Show your prince a little kindness in a world that’s been so very, very cruel to him.”

When she opened her mouth to speak again, Trystay silenced her with kisses, her protests eventually lost in a mingling of gasps and sighs. By the time he’d finished with her, she protested no more, having remembered her rightful place beneath him.

 

Sorrow’s Peak: More Pre-Order Options Now Available

Sorrow's Peak Cover New

Sorrow's Peak Cover NewHappy Wednesday, everyone! There are only thirteen days until Sorrow’s Peak is in hands all over the world. I know I keep saying this, but I am really excited! I am so proud of this ongoing story and can’t wait to share it with you. In fact, tomorrow, I’m going to post the introduction so you can have a peek before it drops into your eReader on the 9th of September, so be on the lookout! I am really looking forward to getting started on the third book in the series. Right now I’m taking a little break from Finn and Lorelei, however, and working on another project I hope to have some news on very soon!

I wanted to take a moment to let you guys know there are now more pre-order options available to non-Kindle readers. You can now pre-order your copy on Apple iBooks and Kobo and it will deliver direct to your device on September 9, 2014!

Here’s a full list of vendors offering pre-orders, and don’t forget I’m selling signed paperback copies right here on the site!

Amazon

Amazon UK

Amazon Canada

Apple iBooks

Kobo

Smashwords

Paperback pre-order information can be found here.

If you’re new to the series, the first book, Edgelanders, is on sale everywhere for just $.99! A full list of retailers can be found here!

Thank you to everyone who already pre-ordered!