Among the People, Hawthorne the Chronicler is well-known for two things: Her faithful rendition of their history and her inclination to behead those who betray her. To mortals, Hawthorne is better known as Al C. Hawthorne, a fantasy writer with a stellar imagination and a knack for complex stories. It is in this guise that she must track down the sources of comic book illustrator Aaron Kesselman’s modernized tales of Rebecca the Blade.
Hawthorne’s blunt words and lithe grace intrigue Aaron, enough for him to take her up on the offer of sharing her bed. Before he knows it, his heart begins the fall into love, a fall he’s willing to take if only he can persuade Hawthorne that she isn’t a two thousand year old immortal descended from one of the most ruthless warriors in British history.
The past isn’t the only obstacle standing in the way of true love. The Eternal Order is on the move, targeting key members of the People in their never-ending quest to extinguish the Light. Hawthorne soon learns that a strong arm and a sharp blade aren’t always the best weapons in a Daughter’s arsenal, especially when her heart is involved.
Aaron rose slowly and all but pushed her into her bed, pulling the covers up to her shoulders before he kissed her forehead. “Goodnight, Hawthorne.”
She raised herself onto her elbows and considered the resolve in his expression, and the unmistakable arousal pushing against the fly of his jeans. “You are leaving me?”
“I am. Get some rest.” He shoved his hands into his pockets and regarded her solemnly. “We’ll talk in the morning.”
He truly intended to leave her, though he was aroused and ready and adored her. She sniffed delicately, caught the faint aroma of his pheromones, and in that moment, lowered herself to the manipulations of a common human. “Perhaps I need the comfort of a friend this night, after the pushing you did.”
He winced and glanced away, and if she had been capable of feeling shame for her own actions, she would have then.
Fortunately, shame had been burned out of her system centuries ago.
“That’s a really bad idea,” he said. “Really.”
She turned down the covers on the opposite side of the bed and patted the mattress. “I insist. You would not wish me to cry again, would you?”
His eyebrows snapped together and he whirled, muttering God’s gonna strike me dead for this under his breath as he snapped off the overhead light and closed the door to her bedroom. She shimmied out of her camisole and panties and dropped them on the floor while he undressed and climbed into bed. He met her in the middle, and she wrapped herself around his long, fit body.
His hands cupped her bare hip and his breath hissed. “You took off your underclothes.”
She buried her face in the crook of his shoulder and slid her hands under his t-shirt, scratching his skin lightly with her nails. It was as she remembered it, warm, firm, beautiful. “Yes.”
“And you expect me to hold you all night like that?”
“If that is what you desire.” She ignored his constrained laugh and skimmed a hand around his ribs, exploring the muscled plane of his back. “Have you not missed our time together?”
“I have, so much.” He slid a muscled thigh between hers and sighed. “I don’t want to hurt you anymore.”
“Then do not.”
“It is as simple as you wish it to be. I did not cry from a harm you inflicted, but from a joy you withheld.”
“That’s…not exactly clear.”
“When you kissed me this evening,” she explained, “I believed you desired me.”
“I did.” His arm tightened across her back where he held her. “I do.”
“Yet, you refused to speak on the way home, refused to touch me or share your gaze with me. Should I not have taken your distance as rejection?”
“No, Hawthorne. Not just no, but hell no. I want you so much it hurts, inside and out, all day and night. Especially the nights. Dreaming of you, the way you smell and taste, like sunshine and woman and everything I’ve ever needed, and the way you feel when I’m in you, so tight and hot and good it takes my breath. I’ve waited so long to have you again, I was afraid my control would snap and I’d take you in the car.” His voice dropped to a low murmur against her ear. “So, no, I wasn’t rejecting you, sweetheart. I was trying not to jump you.”
Her own breath caught in her lungs, refusing to move, choked by the power of his words, the taut need in his voice. “I would not mind this jumping thing so much, if it means having you the way you described. Perhaps you would care to demonstrate.”
His laugh was low and male and scraped across her skin, exposing the billowing desire heating her blood. “I thought you’d never ask.”
About the Author:
Lucy Varna lives in Georgia, surrounded by her large, extended family. She’s a voracious reader and enjoys nothing more than losing herself between the pages of a good book. Her writing draws extensively on her background in genealogy, history, and archaeology, as well as on her eternal love of Science Fiction, Fantasy, the paranormal, and suspense.
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Grand Prize on the Tempered by Lucy Varna Book Tour:
Print/Autographed Copies of: The Prophecy (Book 1), Light’s Bane (Book 2), The Enemy Within (Book 3).
A $25 Amazon gift card
One winner. This giveaway will run 12/15/14 – 12/22/14. USA only residents, please! Enter through Rafflecopter.