Chapter 14 sneak preview of my current work-in-progress:
Luca – Book 1 of the Demon Born Series (paranormal romance).
Pre-edit version. May change before publication.
What a week! I’ve literally just finished writing the last words in a novella I was squeezing in on the side while I worked on Luca’s story. It’s titled ‘Merla’, and it’s the love story of Luca’s great-grandparents (Merla and Renzo) as well as the tale of how the Fairfall lycan line began.
It was unplanned, but Merla is mentioned in Luca’s book, and her story is so exciting that I had to write it in full. Anyway, it’s finished now, all thirty-five thousand words of it. I’ll clean it up a bit and give you a sneak peek over the coming weeks as I continue to write Luca’s story.
The other announcement is that I’ll need to take a couple of weeks off to get ahead on Luca’s book. So, I won’t be sending new chapters for a week or two following this one. But once I’ve got myself on track, we’ll get back to it (I’ll also give you more news on Merla’s book at that time).
For now though, enjoy this week’s chapter which is all about Luca and Belle’s first fiery meeting 🙂
At once, the same force she’d felt earlier pushed her back against the wall. Her magic..?
But little blue flames licked warm around her sleeves and hands before disappearing into the ivy. Not her magic. His.
Wait. If he had magic, then that meant he was a mage and not a werewolf. She could have sworn Aunt Dee had once said werewolves couldn’t cast magic. A sense of relief swept through Belle. If he was a mage—a human—then maybe he could be trusted?
“Are you ready to jump?” His amused voice reached her.
“You… you’re a mage,” she said shakily into the ivy. “You could magic me down.”
“Again, where’s the fun in that?”
Nope. Definitely not to be trusted. Belle scowled. Something told her this man would be every bit as stubborn as he sounded and leave her dangling all night if he decided to.
“All right!” she gritted. She didn’t weigh much, but hopefully she weighed enough to break a bone or two in his smug body. And on a mental count to three, she squeezed her eyes shut and let go the ivy.
The fall was terrifying, but firm hands caught her and pressed her against a hard body.
Belle opened her eyes and gazed up into eyes like electric blue shards. Her breath caught because the rest of him was just as striking—hard, chiselled features; dark hair cut short on the sides and tipping rakishly long over his forehead; and those lips… dear God, those lips. She licked her own, lost in the sudden fantasy of what it would be like to kiss those firm lips.
He set her on her feet, but still held her pressed to him. And that’s when his full height and muscular build registered. He was beyond intimidating. And while he had a similar werewolf vibe to the two men she’d seen in town, he emanated a darker power that felt tightly leashed. Dangerous was too tame a word for him.
“You are a werewolf,” she whispered, knowing she ought to be scared witless, but not feeling it. In fact, all she could feel was the hard strength of him through his jeans and t-shirt as he kept her pressed against him.
“You know much about werewolves?” he asked softly and almost unconsciously ran his hands down her waist to cup her hips.
Belle shivered beneath the soft caress. “You’re my first up close.” She rested her hands on his chest. Her heart was thumping like a crazy thing, and her stomach was doing tingly somersaults. All she craved was to lean in and…
She frowned. Wait a minute. This wasn’t right. He was stunning, but she wasn’t the type to want to jump a man’s bones as soon as she met him, no matter how hot he was.
Her eyes widened. The mate bond! It was making her respond to him. He was her soulmate. She froze on the realization. But he seemed oblivious and lost in the hold of their mate bond. Lust was driving her wild, and maybe him too, but she knew she had to diffuse this situation before it spun out of her control. And do so without alerting him to what was going on. She wiggled her hips a little, trying to break free of his hold and put some distance between them.
But her movement had him growling low. Belle froze again as the sound rumbled in his chest beneath her fingers. Then almost like he was in a dream, he leaned down, pressed his nose to her hair, and inhaled.
Belle’s breath caught.
“Sweet,” he murmured in her ear. And his hands tightened on her hips.
Desire pooled hot in her core, and the desperate need to be filled by him rocked her. Belle clenched her teeth against it. No. Not like this! This wasn’t even love, dammit. She would not give in to some mindless need. And drawing every scrap of strength she had, she pushed hard against his chest to break free of his grip and stumble back.
He frowned and then seemed to snap out of whatever spell the mate bond had him under. His blue eyes glittered with recognition for what she was, and the lust in them hardened to cold determination. “So you have power over me, little witch,” he murmured. “I’ll have to break that, because things are going to happen on my terms.”
Her breathing still ragged, Belle glared at him. “Nothing is going to happen,” she snapped. “You are going to return my aunt to me and then let the two of us leave. Safely.”
He smirked. “Or what?”
So he did have Aunt Dee. Belle’s temper boiled. “Or… or I’ll hex you! Turn you into a daffodil!” She gave him her fiercest look. He’d sensed she was a witch, so hopefully he’d fall for the threat. But he was a magical werewolf of all things, and there was no telling what he might do.
He studied her. “You seem to have the magic for it. But do you have the knowledge for it? Or even the nerve for it?” And lips curving in a taunting sexy smile, he took a step towards her.
The urge to back away was overwhelming, but Belle forced herself to stand her ground. “You better stop right there,” she warned. “Any closer, and you’ll regret it.”
“Will I?” His smile deepened into a grin that near melted her. “Take your best shot. Though I prefer tulips over daffodils if it’s all the same to you.”
Belle fumed helplessly. Every step brought him closer, and her body reacted. But she couldn’t let him touch her again, couldn’t lose herself to him. In a blind panic, she scrabbled inside herself for her stubborn magic. He was a mere step away when suddenly a thread of her power responded. With immense relief, she grabbed for it. But all at once the world turned electric blue, and her knees buckled beneath her.
Strong hands caught her again, and the last thing she heard was his whisper in her ear. “Too late.”
Taking a break to catch up on the story. I’ll continue it in a couple of weeks. 🙂