Dark Faerie Tales is excited to host today’s excerpt and giveaway of Vengeance Borne by Amanda Bonilla. Vengeance Borne is the first title in the urban fantasy Sentries of Evil Series. This novel was released on September 3, 2013.
One lucky reader will win a digital copy of Vengeance Borne by Amanda Bonilla! This giveaway is courtesy of Amanda and is open to international readers!
Amanda Bonilla lives in rural Idaho with her husband and two kids. She’s a part-time pet wrangler, a full-time sun worshipper, and only goes out into the cold when coerced. She loves the outdoors, black clothes, pink appliances and thinks junk food should be a recognized food group. In the summer, she can be found sitting by the lake, enjoying the view from her dock.
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Thanks so much to Dark Faerie Tales for having me as a guest today!
One of my favorite characters in VENGEANCE BORNE is Trish, a powerful empath and head-honcho of the territory all packed into a sweet, grandmotherly form. I particularly liked writing the interaction between her and Micah as she becomes a mentor to him, so I thought I’d share one of my favorite scenes of the book with you today. Hope you enjoy!
Trish wasn’t who Micah expected to see walk back through the door. She took off her jacket and draped it on one of the dining room chairs before giving him an affectionate smile. “Sorry to disappoint you, dear.”
“What do you mean?”
“Oh, you should know by now that you can’t fool a Bearer. It takes a lot of practice to learn how to mask your feelings. She’ll be in shortly, I imagine.” Trish filled a tea kettle from the tap and set it on the stove. “I thought I told her to make you some tea. That girl never listens.”
Micah sat quietly, looking toward the door. He’d promised not to pry into Jacquelyn’s feelings, but it was hard not to when she broadcast them like a reader board running with bright red letters. What she didn’t know, was that the racing pulse, laced with both curiosity and desire wasn’t far from what he’d been feeling, too. At times, he couldn’t differentiate between her emotions and his. But when she’d stood between his legs, bending so close he couldn’t ignore the sweet scent of her skin, it had been his own heart that picked up in rhythm and his own breath that came quick though he sat still as a statue while she cleaned his wounds.
“Whew!” Trish interrupted his thoughts, slamming a cupboard door shut. “If it gets any steamier in here, I’m going to have to open a window.” She dropped a teabag in a mug and set it on the table. “You need to learn how to put a wall up. I’m not the only other empath in town, kiddo.”
Jacquelyn wasn’t wrong; having someone pry into your feelings was damned annoying. “I’ve been running for a long time, Trish.” Micah’s voice was low as he shared his secrets. “Even when I was standing still. This is the first time in my entire life I’ve ever felt like stopping.”
“Maybe you just needed to find your place in the world. Fate leads the way, we have only to follow.” The teakettle whistled, and Trish lifted it from the burner, the shrieking wail fading like the Banshee’s cry. She poured the steaming water into the mug and slid it across the table to him.
“What was she like when Fate brought her here?” he asked, staring toward the door.
Trish laughed, “A smart-mouthed know-it-all. Not much different than she is now.”
“I can see that.” He sipped from the mug. “I’ve never met anyone like her. She’s…”
“Strong,” Trish said, the laughter gone from her voice. “Determined. A force to be reckoned with. Powerful. Everything they taught her to be. Remember that when your thoughts turn soft and mushy. Even a fetching young thing like Jacquelyn can be ruthless, despite her soft features and womanly body. She is a tool against evil and good at what she does. I’ve never seen a better hunter. We’re lucky to have her.”
“Even though she’s basically a slave? Conditioned and brainwashed and forced to do this job?” There was more to her than what Trish saw: a cold, calculating killer. He’d seen her softer side, felt her soul. Most of what she showed on the outside was an act. A hard crunchy shell to protect the soft, gooey center.
Trish leveled her gaze on him and her storm-gray eyes boiled with warning. “We do what must be done to protect innocents from evil. She was born to do what she does. Chosen. We all have our lots in life and this is hers. I’d hardly call serving the greater good slavery, would you?”
“She was taken from her family. Forced to live in a facility where she was trained like some sort of guerilla combatant. She’s never known anything else because they made sure she wouldn’t. They made her a killer,” Micah raised a challenging brow. “And they didn’t even give her a choice in the matter. Sounds a lot like slavery to me.”
“She did not become a killer, dear.” Once again Trish’s voice adopted the grandmotherly tone that was an oxymoron to her words. “She was born a killer.”
“No one is born to kill,” Micah argued. “They trained her, guided her thinking in the direction they wanted it to go. It’s an accident of misfortune that she wound up in the life she did. And that’s all there is to it.”
“There are no accidents, Micah, only Fate.” Trish took the bowl of water tinged with his blood and the rag, placing them in the sink. “Now, let’s get rid of these cuts before the infection sets in. Goblin scratches are toxic.”
Trish briskly rubbed her hands together, kind of a Karate Kid moment, before placing her palms on his lacerated shoulder. Daniel San, there are no accidents, only Fate. He would have laughed, but honestly, Trish had sort of killed his cheerful mood. Tingling warmth crept over his skin as it traveled into the open wounds, both relaxing and invigorating. Tiny pulls, uncomfortable like the sensation of having stitches removed, tugged at his flesh, and he turned his head toward his shoulder. Sparkling light, muted and barely visible, hovered above Trish’s soft, withered hands. She pulled away, the quarter inch-deep cuts closed and healing, save thin white lines to betray the injury.
Trish nodded in agreement. “Not bad. I’ve heard your healing abilities are pretty impressive as well.”
“I guess so. I’ve never consciously done it, though.”
“Don’t worry, you’ll get your chance. Injury comes with the job. A Bearer is a healer, both emotionally and physically, and necessary to a Waerd’s success. Not only does our magic help the hunter locate her prey, but we carry her emotional burden, allowing her to do her job effectively. And if she’s hurt, we fix that, too.”
“Jacquelyn doesn’t like the emotional prying,” he remarked.
“No, I suppose she doesn’t.” The sound of the diesel truck roaring to life carried to Micah’s ears and faded into the distance. He let out a heavy sigh. “She left, didn’t she?”
Trish smiled, but her face looked tired, for the first time showing her age. “I’d better take a look at your head, and then you should get some sleep.” She laid a hand on his shoulder, and he looked down at the white lines of his injuries that faded away to smooth flesh. “Don’t worry, dear. Tomorrow’s another day. And Fate knows best.”
“I hope so.” Micah’s gaze wandered toward the door. I hope so.
This contest is provided by Amanda Bonilla
One lucky reader will win an ebook of Vengeance Borne
Available September 3, 2013 from NYLA
About this Book:
Fated to Hunt…
As the local hunter, and a ward of the Sentry, a secret organization dedicated to eradicating the forces of evil, Jacquelyn has been protecting the small town of McCall, Idaho for the past five years. The hours are horrible, the pay is nonexistent, she has to work with her jealous ex-boyfriend – and forget about quitting. She’s in for life.
Destined to See…
When a rugged drifter comes through town, Jacquelyn immediately knows what he is – an Empath who can read emotions and sense what others are thinking – even though it’s clear the handsome stranger has no idea what, or how powerful, he is…
A Town in Peril…
When people in McCall start turning up dead, viciously ripped to shreds as if by a wild animal, Jacquelyn knows better. Furies are loose in Idaho and hell-bent on exacting revenge. But against whom? And for what purpose? Jacquelyn has until the full moon to stop the Furies’ killing spree and save the people of McCall, figure out how to work with her ex – oh, and there’s a handsome stranger in town who’s in desperate need of some schooling…
Click HERE to read an excerpt
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