2017 is really flying by super fast for me and I'm sure for all of you as well. I can't believe we're already into October. This is my favorite time of year. I love the colors, as you can tell by the pictures from around my neck of the woods. The change of wardrobe with cooler weather is a nice change from the over worn tank tops and flip flops of late summer and I just find that I get kind of energized this time of year. I mean, who doesn't find a pumpkin spice latte energizing?
Fall always has kind of a crackly, fantastical kind of feel to it. Like something unexpected and exciting just might happen. I think that's probably why I started the Tides of Atlantis series off at around this time of year. There's also the whole mystique about anything that happens between the equinox and Halloween. That's not any kind of a spoiler. Just sayin :)
Anyway, with that in mind, and because we're also heading into the proverbial curl up under a blanket by the fire with a good book time of year, here's an excerpt from Moontide for your reading pleasure:
“What are you up to cará?”
“Quit with the ‘cará’ business. My name is Cindy,” she bit out.
All this earned her was a quirked eyebrow.
She drew in a deep breath and blew it out, resigned.
“I’m looking for some information here,” she didn’t know why he felt he was entitled to an explanation but he had an old world air of authority about him that had her scrambling to give him one, “about a friend of mine,” she finished, or thought she had. When he just continued to stare at her, waiting, she was compelled to add, “who’s gone missing.”
He straightened to his full imposing height then and held a hand out for her picture of Karina.
Cindy huffed but handed it over. He studied it for a moment then gave it back.
“I’m sensing that you are meddling where you shouldn’t be, miss,” he stressed the last word, “if your friend has been kidnapped, her retrieval would best be left to the males in her own family or the proper authorities, certainly not a blonde waif such as yourself, all on her own.”
His eyes widened as though something had just dawned on him and he glanced all around in disbelief. “How is it that, each time we meet, you are wandering the streets without escort? Isn’t anyone responsible for you?”
Cindy’s jaw went slack and she stared back at him, wide stormy eyes blazing.
“Huh,” was all she could manage and, even she couldn’t decipher whether the inflection she’d placed on the syllable was interrogatory or plain bewildered outrage.
“R-responsible for me?” she blurted out, “That would be me. I’m responsible for me. 21st century buddy…” her voice had started to ride the swell of a crescendo until his snort cut her off and she felt herself being tugged from her spot. A quick look over her shoulder told her that Head Docent Eve was getting an eye and ear-full, craning, as she was, over her desk. Ronan pulled Cindy along until they stood against the wall and out of the older woman’s line of vision.
“That may be the case under ordinary circumstances but,” and here he pinned her to the wall with his intense sapphire stare, “until you have returned my property, you are mine to look after.”
The grip on her arm softened and changed into just a two fingered touch holding her in place.
“For the remainder of our time together, you’re not to put yourself at risk in any way that could hinder my objective and you will not leave my presence.”
In contrast to her bluster, his words had lowered in volume at the end of his speech but were maddeningly more effective, somehow, at getting his point across. She started feeling unsure of herself like she was doing something wrong. Damn him, all she was trying to do was help her friend! She stiffened and started to tell him what he could do with his demands when her eyes caught on the grouping of framed photos fixed to the wall behind his head. They were of the museum staff and Head Docent Eve smiled garishly at her from behind an enormous pair of gold rimmed glasses. The little brass plate beneath her picture read out Eve Stroper. Of course it did!
Cindy heaved a big sigh and rolled her eyes the likes of which teenage girls everywhere would have been proud and gritted out, “all right, fine.”
He relaxed and those heavenly lips of his softened into the barest hint of a smile then he graced her with that imperious nod that denoted his superior approval and set her blood boiling all over again.
“But,” she whipped out a pointy finger and angled it at his chin, “I’m here to do a job and I will get the information I’m looking for,” she looked quickly back toward the entryway and lowered her voice to a harsh whisper, “whether you like it or not, mister high and mighty.”
He enclosed her finger, along with the rest of her outstretched hand in his much larger one and brought it down between them slowly…so slowly. Then he leaned into her personal space so that it felt as though he had displaced all the air around them and she had to drop her head back to meet his narrowed eyes.
“Indeed, mistress,” he said, “I shall merely accompany you on your…expedition. You won’t even know I am here.”
Funny how ironic words said in monotone can sound. Especially when spoken in his unyieldingly domineering baritone.
Cindy, about at the end of her rope, flung a stray curl out of her eye and moved past him to lead the way. A firm pump to her hand assured her that, no matter what he said, he wasn’t letting her out of his sight…or his grip.
More to come later. See you in the Tides!
About the Author
Amanda V Shane is an author of paranormal and fantasy romance and is currently working on her Tides of Atlantis series about the super hot lost kings of Atlantis as well as her Enchanted Lands Romances.