Beneath his palms, cracked ribs grated with each downward stroke. One—one thousand, crunch. Two—one thousand, crunch. Three—one thousand, crunch. Four—one thousand, crunch. Panting, he ceased CPR and sat back on his heels on the filth-strewn floor of the abandoned brewery.
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Larissa Ione shows that without a doubt she is one of the hottest authors out there. Her combination of a scorching romance, gut wrenching emotional punches, and superb characters all mixed together in a richly developed supernatural fantasy world is perfect. Highly recommended!
Excerpt Chapter 1 It had been at least two decades since Shade had awakened on a strange floor, hungover and without a clue as to his whereabouts.
The heavy weight of a manacle around his wrist and the sound of a rattling chain made him smile. Wake up. Climb on. Blinked at the blurry face peering down at him. Blinked again. Pardon me while I pass out from shock. Long, caramel brown hair that felt like the softest silk on his chest, abs, thighs, as she kissed her way down his body. Full, sensual lips that had curved into wicked smiles worthy of his wildest dreams, pale champagne eyes that complimented smooth, golden skin that had melted like brown sugar under his tongue.
Not since the night she ran away and fell off the face of the earth. Why am I here? Runa snorted. Where are we? Something dripped incessantly, straw littered the floor, and candles burned in iron sconces on the stone walls.
We seem to have four captors…at least, four different demons have been down here to feed us. They call themselves Keepers. There are a few others in cells. The Keepers take out some and bring others in. Runa was secured to the opposite wall with a manacle around her right ankle. She looked different than he remembered, too. But now…holy hot. Her well-worn jeans fit like a glove, and the black sweater stretched across breasts that were definitely smaller than they had been, perfect for his hands.
His mouth. And this line of thinking was doing nothing but making him hard in an extremely inappropriate situation. Then again, as a Seminus demon, a rare breed of incubus, he was pretty much always hard. Last night…last night…what had he been doing? Wait…he was wearing his paramedic uniform. He remembered going to work, checking in with Eidolon, and getting into a scuffle with Wraith.
Their newest doc, a human named Kynan, had broken it up by dousing them both with a bag of saline. Same old, same old at the one and only medical treatment facility for demons. Shade and Skulk had gone out on a call, an injured vamp at a New York meat packing facility. A female? They took her away a little while ago. Instead, she watched him as he eyed the bars in the door to their cell and wondered how sturdy they were. How do you know?
Not the kind humans feared, the flesh-eaters of lore. No, Ghouls were what demons feared — well, second to Aegis slayers, anyway. Ghoul was the name given to anyone — demon or human — who kidnapped vampires, shifters, and demons to harvest body parts for sale on the underworld black market. The Ghouls had always been vicious, but their operation had taken an even more sinister turn in the last couple of years.
Now, instead of merely taking body parts, they did it while the victim was alive. Last year, Shade and his brothers had crippled the operation. The demon population had enjoyed a few months of breathing room, and then suddenly, a couple of months ago, the disappearances and mutilations had started up again, as bloody as ever. A door at the end of the dark corridor burst open, and the sound of footsteps echoed through the dungeon. Shade braced for a fight, but the intruders stopped before they reached the cell where he and Runa sat quietly.
Except there was no way she could make her eyes go as flat and cold as his nearly black ones could, no way she could make her jaw do that grating, rigid thing that made him appear as if he was sharpening his teeth on bones. Menace radiated from him, as palpable as the danger surrounding them. He tugged on his chains, but discovered, as she had, that they were designed to take more serious punishment than either of them could dish out.
Runa recoiled, but he held her easily. Oh, and before I found out you were a demon. He stared at the wall, his shoulder-length black hair falling forward to conceal his expression. I never said I was. You said you were busy. Shade had been on his back, sideways on the bed, his legs dangling over the edge.
A naked woman straddled him, rode him slowly, her face buried in his throat. He always closed them, buried his face in her neck, or took her from behind.
The woman on top of him raised her head. Blood ran down her chin, and when she smiled, her fangs flashed. As Runa stood there in shock and horror, the woman bent, tongued his nipple, and picked up her pace.
Runa had fled. When did you start screwing around on me? Oh, God. Had she just said that? Out loud? Over you. Do you know what I am? What I really am? The very top symbol, an unseeing eye just beneath his jaw, was his personal mark, which would have appeared following his first maturation phase at the age of twenty. I get that your need for sex is all but uncontrollable. But you know what? You tricked me into having sex with you. Used your incubus tricks and pheromones.
You lied to me, made me think you were human. Your females are clingy. You think my life was ruined because you seduced me and then broke my heart?
Snarling, she leaped into an aggressive crouch so fast he reared backwards. Her chains rattled as she trembled with the force of her rage. Her skin prickled, tightening, her gums ached, and she knew she was dangerously close to letting out the inner beast. Too bad I never got the chance. See, after I left your apartment, I was attacked, torn up, and left to die.
You might have heard me scream.
Shelves: favorites , paranormal-romance , part-of-a-series , owned-copy , lovers-reunited , werewolf , curse , demon , favorite-or-autobuy-author One thing I really love is when a book exceeds my expectations. For one, reunited lovers is one of my least favorite themes. I hate the baggage of a broken relationship going into a romantic novel. Just objects to be used and abused. This is a major pet peeve of mine. I am happy to say that I was proven wrong One thing I really love is when a book exceeds my expectations. I am happy to say that I was proven wrong about Shade.
Could this have been a little less awesome? This time we focus on the brother, Shade and his former flame, Runa. It was such a passionate tale of two lovers from different worlds that were brought together under the most unfortunate of circumstances. The secondary characters are worked into the story seamlessly. I am so fascinated with Kynan and Gem. It seems that Ms. Ione is creating a rather large story out of these two characters.