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Shadow World

Soul Kissed Shadow Kissed 2

The great mage Houses battle for control of magekind as the modern world plunges into Shadow...

When a fatal plague sweeps through magekind, no one born with Shadow in their blood is immune to its ravages. At the mage Council's bidding, Cari Dolan, scion of her House, and Mason Stray, an outcast seeking refuge for his young son, are tasked with identifying the fiend responsible.

Together, they track the killer with Cari's rare aptitude to see into the past, while Mason uses his craftsman's gift of ingenuity with magic to protect her. Trust is nearly impossible between them, but both remember a breathless moment long ago, when things could've been different.

As they grow ever closer to their quarry, Mason and Cari cannot deny their growing connection and the desire burning between them. But a true partnership is hopeless. She is a daughter of wealth, privilege, and power, while he has been forced to make dark deals with magekind to merely survive.

Beset by dangers on every side, the hunt leads them into the darkest of futures, between fractured alliances and growing fear. The fae creep ever closer to crossing into the mortal world. And Cari and Mason are at the center of the tumult. Will their incendiary union be their salvation…or their doom?

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Excerpt from Soul Kissed

Mason stood in the open doorway of his refuge cabin. He lifted his shotgun the moment he caught the sun glinting off the black of a Lexus LX SUV through the spare desert trees on the windy drive up his mountain.

He knew who it had to be. And he didn't care.

Didn't matter that the High Seat herself had traveled cross country and had hauled herself up this mountain. She wasn't getting anywhere near him or his son. No mage was until this scourge had passed. The May Fair Massacre had claimed seventeen lives, and many more had fallen in the weeks since. He and Fletcher were lucky to have survived, but Mason wouldn't count on luck again. He never counted on anything. Not where Fletcher was concerned.

A lizard skittered up the weather-bowed trunk of a mesquite tree. The high desert of New Mexico smelled dust dead, heat-stricken, a scorched bone of the world. It was why he'd chosen this place over his other in the east.

The car slowed to a stop, dust hovering in a cloud around its wheels. The driver's side door opened and Jack Bastian, Kaye Brand's angel consort, got out. Tall, well built, the man had a backbone like an arrow—and his mind was just as sharp, just as deadly.

Mason cocked his rifle, hating the blare of the sun overhead. "Don't come any closer!"

How many times did he have to hang up his phone on Brand to make her understand?

Jack Bastian looked over at him as he rounded the front of the car, a wry expression on his face, but his eyes hard. He didn't stop to open the front passenger door, as Mason expected, but approached the house directly.

"I'll allow no mages here, Jack," Mason called out. He'd shoot; they knew he'd shoot. "Not even her."

Jack stalked right up to the barrel of the gun. The angel had balls of steel. "You've made your point. It's just me today."

Mason glared back at the car, but no matter how hard he tried, he could not sense any Shadow within it. He swallowed to ease the fist of his heart, then lifted the shotgun so the barrel pointed to the sky.

Jack inclined his head in thanks as he bumped by Mason's shoulder on his way into the cabin.

Mason slammed the door shut behind him, forcing himself not to look at the false wall behind which Fletcher hid. Mason was glad he'd long ago sound-proofed the hidden room, a measure from when his son was baby.

"How'd you find me anyhow?" He'd chosen this remote spot on this scrub and scorpion-infested hill for a reason.

Jack looked at him over his shoulder. "I'm an angel."

"Angels track souls, not Shadow." It was how mages had hid from the Order throughout the centuries. If angels could track mages, the war between them would have been long over, in favor of Order. "I ask again, how did you find me?"

Because if Jack Bastian could locate him, then others might as well. Which meant this place wasn't safe. Mason adjusted his grip on the shotgun, his mind racing through alternatives.

"No one else knows." Jack took a seat in the center of the old plaid couch that had come with the cabin. He winged his arms out to the side to rest on the back cushions, making himself very much at home. "Not even Kaye knows."

Mason felt his sarcasm rising. "You don't share everything? No pillow talk?"

The angel still hadn't answered his question. How in Shadow's pitch had he found him?

"Have a seat, Mason." Now Jack sounded tired. "It's about to get worse, so save your anger for where it counts."