Holy shit. There’s just over two weeks until the release of A Heart of Salt & Silver!
November 3rd is so close, and I’m freaking excited. So much so that I can’t resist sharing some more with you.
Down below, you’ll find an excerpt from this dark and brooding Paranormal High Fantasy Romance, as well as the playlist I listened to while writing.
Shall we start with the excerpt?
I pulled this one from chapter 12, taking you deep into the action. Ness and Elias are in some trouble, but since she’s immortal and Elias isn’t, she’s facing down a pack of Howlers (animals in a state of suspended/delayed death under the magical control of our big bad evil guy) all by herself.
Behind me, the alpha struggles to gain its feet, slipping in its own gore over by the tree. I turn to show it mercy, but the remainder, a small black wolf, grabs my right thigh in its jaws. It shakes its head back and forth, pulling my leg out from under me.
The ground rushes up to meet me, and I feel my nose break with the impact. Pain explodes through my skull. Blood gushes out, pouring down over my lips when I roll onto my back. The Howler drags me toward its alpha, arching its back and jerking as it does.
Thrashing, I swipe a hand at its face, desperate to end the pain for the both of us. My slash falls short, merely catching the flesh of her muzzle with my nails. It tears away in a bloody hunk. The poor thing screams, and the sound is just a bit too human.
It pierces my soul, sending shivers through my body.
But she lets go of my leg.
Scrambling upward, pain exploding through me with every move, I pull the wolf’s head to my chest. Holding her still against me, I take her head in both hands and snap her neck. She goes limp in my arms, and I set her gently on the ground.
Her eyes shine with nothing more than firelight, finally lifeless in death. As they should be. The bone around them glows against her black fur, matted down with dried blood.
Finally gaining its feet, the massive alpha charges, barreling into me as I wipe tears from my face. Its teeth find my left arm, sinking in deep. Lightning bursts of agony explode across every fiber of my being.
Pulling my hands apart, I pry the Howler’s jaws from my arms without ever touching the beast. A single twirling finger secures its jaw with a Nether binding, a thing I probably should have done from the start.
Another thing I’ll regret later…
Pulling the great grey beast against me, I hold it tight, despite its thrashing, finally finding a use for my unnatural strength. Staring into its eyes, I see pain.
With one hand on the side of its face, I fill my own eyes with compassion, letting my emotions seep into the beast. Another seldom used ability. I’m much more likely to keep my feelings to myself.
But here, now, it soothes this poor creature. The beast lays down across my lap, staring up at me.
Snarls become whimpers, and howls morph into soft whines. I feel death in the poor thing. His body is cold, and thick blood drains from its gaping stomach. Eyes like caramel stare into my soul, aching for release.
Twirling one finger counterclockwise, I release Elias from his Nether binding in the tree and free the wolf’s jaws. He won’t bite me, now.
With tears streaming down my face, I place my right hand atop the wolf’s head. My savaged left arm lies limp across the beast’s side. Stroking gently and hiding a grimace of pain, I try to show this poor animal a bit of comfort.
Then, I place one nail over the top of his head. He whines softly, and I make gentle sounds of reassurance.
“Shhh… It’s okay, now,” I whisper, petting the poor animal slowly and driving my talon through his skull.
Black blood oozes out around it, but for a split second, before the life fades from his eyes, he finds peace. His muscles go limp, finally relaxing as they should have when he first died.
Heaving a great sob, I haul the massive wolf’s head to my chest. My cries drown out the sounds of Elias climbing down from the tree. I hug the cold, dead wolf to me, weeping into matted fur.
My body shakes with sobs, and my chest aches. My world goes black, wiping the stars and the moon from the sky. My breath catches in my throat as my fingers tighten around dirty fur.
Can I just say that I cried writing this scene?
God, the poor animals. They went through so much. And they tore Ness up pretty badly before she could put them out of their misery.
Needless to say, there are some truly sad songs in the playlist. There are also some happy ones, some songs full of romantic tension, and a few that just sound fucking bad ass.
So, if you’re looking to broaden your musical horizons, the playlist below (assembled on YouTube Music) has 94 songs from all different genres. If you don’t have YouTube Music, I’ve also included screenshots of the playlist.
Who knows, you could listen to it while reading.
If you haven’t entered my preorder giveaway, it’s open until release day. Preorders are still available.
Links are down below.
Keep reading. Keep writing.