The purpose here is to spotlight a few lines or a few paragraphs from a new release or backlisted title. This way my readers get to sample some delicious snippets and I'll do my best to tease, titillate and tantalize you into the weekend.
This week I'm teasing from IN DEATH'S SHADOW, my new release fantasy romance, and Book 3 in the Rifts series. Princess Maia is stuck in a cave with an assassin who blames her for his brother's death. And they've been stuck there for a few days because of a blizzard. The conversation isn't going well.
“Do you have any idea where we’re going?”
“Do you?” Quinn paused in his motions, the silence looming loud. “I’m following you, after all. You’re the one who senses the dryad’s artifact, correct?”
“Yes…except it’s muted here. The weather is very distracting, and being locked in a cave doesn’t help.” Especially with the angry, but sexy man with her.
Maia groaned. There had to be a better way to travel than with this unrelenting animosity between them. “Can’t you just give me a chance to prove I’m not who you think I am?”
“Not even a little one? Just one chance to show you I didn’t try get your brother killed? None of us intended to stay with the dryads.” She stopped when she thought of Inge. “Well, most of us.”
“It’s not typical.” She shook her head. “That’s the problem. Some of my sisters were flighty, but not all of them. And not me. The night the druid stole the artifact might have happened a long time ago, but I still remember something being off about it.” She frowned as she searched her memories.
“I’m sure the revels kept you plenty distracted. Perhaps you shouldn’t have imbibed so much.” Quinn’s tone held both contempt and disgust.
“Shove off, you sanctimonious prick. I didn’t drink anything other than water that night.” She raised her chin and stared him down, meeting his blazing green gaze. “And where were you when your brother searched for his fortune at the hands of my family? Talk about typical. A man figures the easy way through life is to purchase a wife, right? Since women are merely a commodity to be traded between men.” She pointed at Quinn, her fury heating her chest. “If you think I’m so rotten, Quinn, why didn’t you tell him to find a woman on his own? Why didn’t you do anything to stop your brother’s execution? I was stuck here. It’s not like I could have changed things.”
“You could have come home.” He didn’t shout, but the venom in his voice chilled her more than the blizzard outside.
“Don’t you think I would have if I could have?”
“I don’t know, princess. Your family’s motivations baffle me.”
“That makes two of us. I didn’t drug your brother and I didn’t intend to stay gone. But if I’d been there, I would’ve stopped the execution of my sibling.”
“Like you did for your oldest sister?”
Maia reeled back as if she’d taken a physical blow. She had to hand it to him, his aim was true. Hurt and sorrow mixed until it boiled into cold disgust and she turned her face away.
“Just let me sleep and ignore any giggling. I don’t mean to disturb you with any remembered happiness.” She hunkered down in her coat and closed her eyes, willing sleep to overtake the hurt still burning.
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