I’ll admit to following a bit of a theme this month. It’s October, capped by Halloween. This last #1lineWed theme of **FEAR** plays straight into the season. In this snippet from my upcoming Halloween release (are you seeing a theme here? 😆 ), Roman is in the Legate’s office, which overlooks Jackson Square. Fear comes in many guises.
As it was always wont to do, Roman’s attention turned to Fortune Tellers Row. Like the artists and performers, the psychics and readers were fewer during the week. He’d long ago learned that most were charlatans but the occasional human psychic or magick appeared, which meant he had to keep his eye on their activities. His eyes sought out hair the color of sunshine capping a gamin face. She was there, tucked beneath her patched umbrella, a paperback book open in her lap and he wondered what she was reading. Her presence concerned him—far more than it should. She’d not come one day and he’d fretted all morning about it before his duties called him away. Even then, thoughts of her remained in the back of his mind, and he’d been far too relieved when she’d arrived at her usual time the next day.
He needed to return to Paris but he was still reluctant to leave New Orleans. Something kept his instincts centered here—something besides the little gypsy. There was oily darkness simmering beneath the gaudy surface of the city and the awareness of it scraped against his senses like sandpaper over sunburned skin. Evil was stalking his city and he was still guardian enough to desire battle.
An image of Le Vieil, leader of the gargoyle realm, shimmered before his eyes and his gut roiled. Roman had a duty to his kind, as well. Crevan, the oldest of them all, had chosen him all those many years ago to fulfill the gruesome task of finding and eliminating the vessel meant to receive the Heart of Stone. The Crucible had been born—though none knew where or to whom. Finding her was a monumental task and all the Sentinels were looking for her. Maybe that’s what was creating the sense of urgency. They’d recovered the Heart of Stone years ago and though it was hidden well, there would be no peace or safety for the Heart or the Gargoyle kindred until the Crucible was destroyed. Things were coming to a head. There’d been reports of more dead gargoyles, of others turning rogue, and the guard doubled upon the Heart.
Movement in the sun-soaked plaza yanked him from his grim thoughts. The little gypsy had put her book away and was rearranging things on her table, filled as it was with the accoutrements of her trade—crystal ball, Tarot cards, crystals.
Four grubby men swaggered along the promenade, their voices loud and obnoxious. They approached the little gypsy’s table and Roman could almost see the calculation in their eyes, and the moment gang mentality took over. Roman tore open the window and leaned out. He could taste her fear on the wind like it was something tangible as they surrounded the table, hemming her in their midst. He couldn’t flash to her as he wished—too many prying eyes. Roman had to respond as a human would—by dashing down stairs and out the door.
This is an unedited version so ignore the typos, etc. I can’t wait for y’all to read this one. Iffy, my Muse, threw me a curve ball that made my brain go all explodey! While this is a story about Roman and Verity, fans will get to see Sade, Sinjen, Caleb, and Ari, too.
Today, instead of asking you to share scary words, how about sharing what you fear? *bwahahaha*