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 THE VALKYRIE'S SWORD, my paranormal romance new release. It was a long haul, but it's now available! Svanhild is a fallen valkyrie and she's visiting the local Morukai shaman. Unfortunately, she's not the only one.
Svanhild took a deep breath and gathered herself before stepping out the door of Kate’s house. She wanted to stay and bask in the Morukai’s company. She’s Freyja’s emissary. There was no question of Kate’s divinity. It radiated from her and warmed everyone near her. Svanhild’s heart thundered with the need to find her place in the Morukai’s world. This is what I’ve been searching for all these centuries. I could be useful again.
Joy and contentment flooded through her. She’d been hit with a punch-drunk kiss of connection she hadn’t experienced since she’d first become a Valkyrie in the Goddess’s service. And she wanted more, more time with Kate Blackamber, serving her specifically. This is where I’m meant to be.
The door closed behind her while Bart conferred with Kate—something about his cousin and the local hunters. She took another deep breath and damn near ran over the person who’d just stepped up onto the porch. The creeping hiss of awareness that someone stood too close coupled with the smell of rain-soaked wool brought her up short and she braced for evasive action.
By the time her gaze had sharpened on the man in front of her, he’d shifted to the side and taken a defensive stance, his own expression tight with wariness. Her Valkyrie senses roared to life, gearing up for battle with the black and poisonous taint surrounding him. Butcher! Unworthy drit-monger! Her berserker rage rose once more.
Her fists clenched at her side and she missed the feeling of her sword and hatchet. She realized she’d stepped into his space and throttled back the urge to carry the fight to the enemy.
“Excuse me.” The words came out more snarl than conversation. But she’d been more or less polite.
He dipped his head in acknowledgement and took another step back. “It’s not a problem. I didn’t mean to get so close.”
His own words were clipped and tense, and his hands clenched on his pant legs as if he needed something to hold on to. She raised her chin and stared him down, asserting her strength and height over such an unclean apparition. I will destroy you.
He met her gaze, holding his ground without openly challenging her.
“Why are you here?” The audacity of her question shocked her, but she’d learned to hide her surprise over her own unintentional actions.
His chin jerked as if he wanted to meet her blow for blow, but he inhaled slowly and released his breath with measured effort.
“I’m here for the Morukai.”
“In what capacity?” Something about the guy suggested his visit might be more ambush than social call. I won’t give you a chance, bastard.
Again he took a long slow breath. “For...help.”
The words were forced, thrust between clenched teeth and riddled with reluctance. He shook as if he held something back. Then his whole body stiffened and his eyes rolled back in his head before he crumpled to the floor of the porch.
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