Two gorgeous covers from The Wild Rose Press…
The greatest enemy of a vampire is boredom. Four centuries of existence have taught Lord Morgan Gabriel D’Arcy to fear nothing and no one. Humans and their weapons have little chance against his preternatural speed and arcane powers. Vampires are viral mutations of human DNA. Still, the Vampyre code requires secrecy, and he has learned to hide his nature from the world. The lure of mortality, of a life in the sun, puts Morgan again and again at the mercy of calculating human women though they fail to consider his charm and determination into the equation. However, even grooming a future bride from infancy proves to be fraught with heartbreak. And second chances are not always what they seem unless… you are Morgan. Immortality and beauty, aren’t they grand?
A fingertip traced my jaw. “You guys play a bit fast and loose for me. Fix those baby blues on me, Morgan, and make me forget everything. Including you.”
I didn’t want to make Ellen forget. Finally, I’d found someone who believed that I was a different species, accepted the fact, and still cared for me. Sadness crept down my rigid spine on a chill.
“I know you can.” Tears in her eyes, she touched my mouth. “It’s what I want.”
“I received an email today from Charleston.” Lucien sounded weary, as sad as I felt and Ellen looked. “You can return to South Carolina. If that’s what you want.”
My heart leapt into my throat. Going back to Charleston, winning Isabeau was what I’d dreamed every night for six months. “Can we expect you at the wedding?”
Ellen roused to frown up at me. “What wedding?”
With the back of my hand, I caressed her cheek. “Mine.”
She made a pitiful grimace, but mischief sparkled in her eyes. “I thought my son would be born a bastard. Now, he’ll be an aristocratic bastard like his dad.”
Over her shoulder, I met Lucien’s gaze. The Chief Councilor arched a brow and simply stared at me for several heartbeats. A question burned in the depths of his black eyes. He awaited a decision I wasn’t prepared to give—even to myself. My old friend indicated Ellen with a nod of his head. She’s not pregnant. As if I didn’t know. He strode to the rail, staring at Margo’s corpse. The red heat sizzling along my skin sparkled in his aura. A brilliant halo engulfed the body. The remains of Margo St. Johns glowed, wavered like heat rising from hot tarmac and vanished in an explosion of crimson light.
I freed Ellen from my embrace. “I must help Lucien dispose of the bodies before the police arrive and ask questions difficult to answer.”
She shook her head, a fingertip caressing my lower lip. “You need to stay with me…until you make me forget.”
I bent to whisper a kiss to her lips. “Ellen, never doubt that I love you.”
A tear drizzled down her cheek. “Make me forget. It’s better that way. As I said, it’s what I want. And what you obviously need.”
Closing her eyes, she waited.
“I can manage,” Lucien called.
A night bird sang a lonely song. I rested my hand on Ellen’s forehead, easing her into a deep sleep. As she collapsed, I caught her to me. Pain welled in my heart. Twice in six months, I’d been forced to give up a woman I loved. Dum Spiro Spero. While I breathe, I hope, and hope had offered me another chance to win Isabeau.
Dreams misted my eyes as I carried Ellen to the car. She slept on the journey home. I strode up the stairs and into her bedroom with my lovely accomplice and lover. Gently, I lay her on the bed. She breathed slowly and deeply, remaining motionless as I invaded her thoughts and erased every memory of me, the existence of vampires and the catastrophe at the docks. Mission accomplished, I stood staring at her. Ellen had forgotten our intermezzo. I never would.
Isabeau, where are you tonight? Do you ever think of me?
With a mental flick of the wrist, I locked Ellen’s front door. Some of the bounce returned to my step as I descended the stairs. I refused to allow it to end this way. On the sidewalk, I halted, heedless of the mist collecting on my hair and clothes. The me I’d lost returned on a rush. I smiled, for the first time in what seemed forever, actually looking forward to tomorrow night. At sunset on a Sunday, I’d drive to Royal Oak and enjoy a few peaceful days in the country. Soon, I’d return to Charleston. Isabeau must relent and love me again. She was my destiny.
And I hers.
Angels in slavery? Brit Montgomery couldn’t believe it, and when her guardian angels sent her to another dimension to rescue the three enslaved, she found a surprise that would rock her world. The golden angel, Gyldan, was the most beautiful being she’d ever seen. Sometimes, beauty disguises a deeper meaning.
Gyldan, a slave since birth, had one thought in mind—to fly free—until his rescuer became dearer than his dreams. But when he returned with her to a place called Earth, he faced a rude awakening. He met himself in full glory…and disbelief. Back in his dimension, he had a purpose and almost failed the heavenly test before truth shone clear, love even sharper.
My restoration to Grace plunged Heaven and Hell into civil war. The day the earth stood still, I watched from a rock ledge above a field choked with the great armies. Sunlight glinted on the golden helms of the Righteous and the silver helmets of the Damned. Prophecy echoed in the thud of mortal feet and the beat of a thousand wings. I folded my wings around me. This slight movement drew an immediate reaction. As one, the winged combatants turned to stare at me.
Winter wind ruffled the holy raiment draped about my shoulders and blew on me the scent of bitterness. I could taste their disgust and distrust. But I would not bow my head, unless or until I was forced to do so. If I’d possessed a soul, it would have shrunk inside me, but like my celestial brothers, I am soulless.
Let me introduce myself.
I am Ha-Satan, the Adversary, once Heaven’s Prosecuting Attorney. I have been called the Father of Lies, the Master of Temptation, Lord of Hell. I am the one you’ve been taught to fear, who hides beneath your bed to steal your soul. I am the most fearsome and the most beautiful angel.
My existence began as the first light emanating from the Thought. He said to me on the day of my creation, “I make you closest to me, of all the powers, Master and Mirror of my might. I create you beautiful in bliss and name you Lucifer, Bringer of Light.”
And so, my friends, I, Lucifer, would like to set the record straight. If ever I did Fall, I have been forgiven.