Two for the Price of One

Aren’t you lucky? Two posts up today, instead of just one!

First it’s just to remind everyone that I have my first ever interview with the lovely Cassidy Kingston up on Monday! She’s a paranormal romance writer, and will be telling us all about her love of all things geeky, and about her very sexy characters from her books!

Also, I think I promised a little excerpt for you all later on, hmm? Well, instead of an excerpt from Conner, I’ve decided I’m going to let you have a little sneaky look at the first chapter of Erin, the sequel to Conner,due to come out in September! So enjoy….

 

Chapter 1

 

Erin was running, her hair swaying around her face. The woods surrounded her with their scent, the freshness of the leaves and the perfume of the flowers infusing in a delightful sweetness. A soft, cool air blew past her, making her shiver slightly. The same air rustled the trees, making them murmur to one another, the spirits of the trees whispering a secret amongst them. The warm sunlight peered through the leafy canopy, sending golden shafts of light dancing along the ground.

She was wearing a light green dress, but it was torn and shredded. She ran barefoot, having no shoes at all, across the twigs and grass beneath her feet.

The strange thing was, she didn’t feel as though she was running away from anything-rather, she felt she was running towards something; but what?

Erin was running so fast that the woods around her almost became a blur. She could feel the heartbeat of everything around her, of every animal, of the woods themselves. A deep drumming throb that ran through every footstep, every river, every breath

of wind. It was as though she were a part of the woods around her. It was the most primal, raw, wonderful feeling she had ever felt.

Suddenly, she came to a clearing, surrounded by tall pines. In the centre of the clearing, sat on a large rock, was Filtiarn. He was sat leaning forwards, looking down at the grassy floor, his hands linked together in front of himself. As Erin appeared shyly at the edge of the clearing, he looked up slowly. His amber eyes lit up as he saw her, a charming grin spreading across his face. He was wearing jeans that were slightly ripped all over, but no shoes or top. He didn’t move, but held out his hand for Erin to go closer.

She walked forwards, holding out her hand to grasp his. As their fingers touched, he pulled her sharply towards him, sitting her on his knee. She gasped with delight as he pulled her, and then laughed, throwing her arms around his neck.

It was then that she remembered-they had been out running together, in their wolfen forms, enjoying the early morning sunshine. She had got a little lost, and run off by herself, not realizing that Filtiarn had stopped. Once she had changed back to her human form, she had realised she had left him behind, and had retraced her steps, back to the clearing where Filtiarn was sat waiting for her.

He hugged her back, showing his fangs as he

smiled. Suddenly, the sunshine disappeared, sending the clearing into darkness. Erin looked back at Filtiarn, worried by this sudden change. He grinned back at her, but it now seemed fixed, and cold. His canines grew out to their full length, and he pinned Erin’s arms tightly to her sides.

“Filtiarn? What are you doing?” she asked, her voice sounding scared and weak.

“I’m going to make you forget who you once were, and make you truly mine…” he snarled, grasping her throat, and hovering over it with his canines, saliva dripping onto her neck….

 

Erin sat bolt upright, cold sweat dripping down her forehead. It took a few seconds for her eyes to adjust to the soothing black darkness in her room, as she blinked. Her heart was racing so fast it made her chest hurt, and she was shaking slightly.

Taking a deep breath, Erin tried to calm herself down, wiping the sweat from her forehead, and hugging her knees into her chest. She looked around herself, familiarising herself with her room again, as you do after a nightmare has shaken you.

“It was just a nightmare, Erin, just a nightmare.” she muttered to herself.

The problem was that she had been

having this nightmare for the last month; in fact the whole month she had been back at Athol Castle. She couldn’t remember anything for years before being at the castle. When she asked Filtiarn about it, he simply replied, “You were in a coma, you finally woke from it.”

The nightmare was sometimes different, sometimes in a different place, sometimes it went even further, with Filtiarn actually killing her. She tried to tell herself it was just her imagination, but she did have to wonder why it kept coming back night after night. Was her mind trying to tell her something?

Erin slowly pulled the covers back from her bed, and looked at the small alarm clock next to her bed. It said it was five am, and she could just see small prying fingers of sunlight peeping through her curtains. Erin stretched, and slid out of the bed, her silky nightgown falling around her legs. She padded over to the window, the flagstones of her room cold on her feet, throwing the curtains open. Warm morning sunlight flooded the room, bathing it in a gentle golden glow.

Looking down at the courtyard outside, Erin decided she would go and practice with Sioctine again. She was incredibly rusty with it, but she assumed that being in a coma for

twenty-six years would do that. She turned and smiled across at the silvery sword, resting on a red velvet cloth, near her bed. The blue jewel was on top, icy wisps floating away from it in folds. The jewel itself actually had a name, ‘Fuar’, simply meaning, ‘cold’ in Irish Gaelic. The other jewel also had a Gaelic name, ‘Paisean’, meaning ‘passion’. Although the jewels had their own names, they were rarely used, as they were now part of the sword.

Rubbing some of the sleep from her eyes, she walked back across to the sword, pausing in front of it. Gently, she ran the back of her hand against the gleaming metal of the actual blade. Picking it up, she swung it around, loving the feel of its weight pulling her hand around slightly.

Smiling, she put the sword down on the bed, reaching for her clothes, which she had laid out for the next day on one of her chairs. As she reached out for them, she caught her reflection in the full-length mirror that sat facing the bed. Erin stood up again, looking into the mirror, frowning. Something looked different, but she couldn’t put her finger on what.

Her brow furrowed, she walked towards it, unhurriedly. As she ended up in front of it, she peered into it, and then pulled a confused

face.

Both of her reflection’s irises were blue!

She knew that one of hers was silver, pure silver, so that definitely wasn’t right. Still frowning, she moved her hand, as though waving. Her reflection did the same. She leaned in, and the reflection copied her. She then turned around, and the reflection again copied her.

Erin had just decided that there must be something wrong with the mirror, when the reflection leaned in by itself, and smiled at her!

Erin inhaled sharply, stepping backwards, almost tripping over a rug. Shaking, she closed her eyes, and then opened them again, looking into the mirror. Her reflection was still there, looking concerned. The reflection lifted her hand and crooked her finger, indicating Erin should come forwards.

Erin shook her head, stammering, but still with a commanding tone in her voice, “Who…or what…are you?”

The reflection smiled kindly, it features softening. “I am you, Erin. I am your inner voice.”

“What?” Erin shook her head sharply, closing her eyes, as though to shake the image in the mirror away. Taking a deep breath, she walked forwards, staring straight into the

reflection’s eyes.

The reflection grinned as she saw Erin walking closer, and nodded. “Yes. I am your inner voice-a part of your soul. I must warn you, Erin, you are in danger.”

Erin swallowed, glancing across to her sword. She knew it was useless to think about grabbing it anyway; if this was an enchantment, having a sword would do nothing, even an enchanted sword. “What do you mean? How am I in danger?”

The reflection’s expression fell as she spoke the next few sentences, her eyes darkening. “You are in control of an enemy. An enemy of both your mate and yourself. This is not who you are, Erin.”

“My mate?” Erin repeated, worriedly. “You mean Filtiarn?”

Smiling again, but sadly this time, her reflection shook its head, the dark hair cascading around its face. “He may not be your mate, Erin. Just remember who you really are. Please.”

A sudden knocking on Erin’s door made her jump, turning her head towards the darkened wood.

“Erin? I heard noise. Are you up?”

It was Filtiarn. He had been gone all night, out hunting, but he must have returned

and decided not to wake her. Clearing her throat, Erin shouted back.

“Yes, Filtiarn, I’m just getting dressed; I’ll be down in a moment!”

As she listened to his footsteps tapping away from the door, she swallowed nervously. She turned her head back to the mirror, expecting to still see the reflected image of her ‘inner voice’. But it was gone. Her reflection was copying her exactly, and her eyes had returned to their normal blue and silver.

Had she imagined it?

 

As she walked into the throne room, she saw Filtiarn stood at the end, in full battle attire, at least for him. He was stood talking to one of the lower members of the pack, looking deep in conversation. He was dressed completely in black, a leather jacket with straps around his torso, with jeans, his trademark biker boots still on his feet. A long silver blade hung by his side, looking big even on his six-foot five frame.

As Erin entered the room, Filtiarn looked up at her, a grin breaking over his features. He nodded at the young man he had been talking to for him to stay where he was, and then walked over to Erin, taking long strides, the sword

swinging with each stride.

He leaned over and kissed her forehead, tenderly, his hand behind her head possessively. When he looked up again, his eyes had burnt to a dark grey colour, the metallic silver of them shining brightly.

“Why were you not awake earlier this morning? I thought you would be outside with Sioctine.” He looked down at her, his eyebrows raised questioningly. Erin shrugged.

“I was going to, but…well, I slept in.” She was about to tell him about the mirror, but then decided not to. She didn’t want him to get worried about her seeing strange things in mirrors-it was probably just her seeing things, she had only just woken up.

“Ah, very well.” Filtiarn put his arm around Erin’s shoulders, pulling her towards him. She pressed herself into him, smiling. She hadn’t dressed in her usual velvet dress, but simply in jeans and a red t-shirt. Filtiarn began walking her back over to the young man, beckoning for him to come forwards.

The young man did walk over, quickly, and bowed his head before both Erin and Filtiarn. Standing back up again, he looked expectantly at Filtiarn. Filtiarn cleared his throat, and turned to Erin.

“I don’t think you will remember this young man, Erin. He is Daithí.” He pronounced the name ‘Dah-hee’. “We have been discussing what the pack needs to do to get started with our plan. We have decided that modern means is the quickest way, of course.”

“Modern means?”

“Yes.” Filtiarn nodded, a dark look coming into his eyes, which somehow made him look even more wolfish. “We’re going to have a press conference, Erin.”

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