Love will redeem them...or damn their souls.
As Darkfall gains a foothold in the small coastal town of Serendipity Falls, Bridget, a witch and healer, fights a battle on two fronts. Against the chaos bleeding through the fissures of a cracked portal between realms, and against her attraction to a fallen angel with his own agenda. Talon's dark ways and mysterious magics go against everything she believes in, but he's the only man she's ever loved.
Talon, forever haunted by his fall from grace and his ceaseless desire for the headstrong Bridget, longs for what he can never possess. Though he is no longer her guardian, she tempts him with pleasure he can never touch and emotions he can never reveal.
Caught on opposite sides in a war between good and evil, they struggle against their mutual passion. Then an ancient prophecy points to the one who will break the portal wide open and shift the balance of power: Bridget. She has no choice but to turn to Talon, and the love that will damn their souls--or save the world.
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September 15, 2008
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Excerpt from The Fallen by Gwen Hayes
"I'm not leaving." Her voice sounded flat and toneless. Defeated. She wished he would go. She regarded the sharp planes of his face. A beautiful face, one that could make a grown woman weep. Perfectly symmetrical features framed by jet-black hair of silk. She knew his skin would be warm and his breath would be sweet. An angel. One so beautiful it was hard to remember that she hated him. And she did hate him.
"It isn't safe."
He faced her again, and she cursed his features. She would rather look upon his face than the most glorious sunset. He must know the power it yielded over women, over her. It always made his damning words all the more hateful, to come from such an angelic mouth. She blinked away her reverie. "Which is why I stay."
"Poppet, it is unsafe for you most of all."
When he loosened his grip, she realized he still hadn't let go of her arms. All her nerves warred with each other to get to the patch of skin he touched. Why wouldn't he just leave? "What did you say?"
He smiled. A lazy, sardonic grin that made her want to spit nails. "I see, in your eyes, great promise for passion. Sometimes, I wonder what it would cost a man to see you finally soften and yield in his arms. I'm certain it would be worth the price."
He was wearing her down--she steeled herself against his charm. "Why is it most unsafe for me, Talon?"
"Even the demons don't know why they are drawn here. They just know the mystical epicenter is humming and enticing them like flies to honey. Some are gossiping about a prophecy. A Sorceress of Fire cracking the rift open. Some believe that could be you. Word is, you could be in high demand." He rubbed his hands down her arms. "The Agency can send someone else. You should go into hiding."
"A prophecy? Please. They're only accurate predictions about what could happen if the course doesn't change from its current path. The older the prediction, the less accurate it becomes."
"Demons are very superstitious. They put a lot of faith behind those forecasts."
Since when did he care what demons believed? "The demons would be foolish to attempt going after me, and they all know it. I'll stay and do what needs doing, just as I always do."
"Woman, your powers do not make you infallible."
She clenched her fists with purpose, and a loud rumble of thunder shook the house in answer. "Demons are afraid of me, for good reason. I don't cower and I will not run." She flexed her fingers and lightning lit the sky, casting purple shadows on the walls. He didn't flinch at her display, but instead gazed openly at her lips. They tingled under his gaze, and she unthinkingly wet them with her tongue, struck dumb by the flash of desire he didn't try to hide in his eyes.
The teakettle whistled, breaking their concentration, and thankfully, he dropped her arms. She turned off the stove. "Again, I have to ask. Why the sudden concern?"
"I have such few pleasures in life. You're my favorite diversion. I'd hate to see you gone."
She scoffed and poured the water into two mugs. "Talon, your self-indulgence is legendary. I know you find amusement at my expense, but I refuse to believe that it is one of only a few pleasures you seek."
"Are you offering an alternative pleasure, poppet?" He fingered the end of her hair.
The air was suddenly heavy around them. She met his gaze, even knowing as she did, it would be a mistake. "I have nothing to offer that you would be interested in."
He smirked as he reached for her hand, bringing it to his lips and gently kissing her knuckles. "You are a beautiful and vibrant woman, Bridget. You offer pleasure of a thousand kinds just by entering a room."
She closed her eyes, her turn now to nurse the wounds caused by their exchange of words. His compliment only served as a reminder of humiliation. His perseverance to sway her would last only until she wavered. And then he would shame her and laugh at her weakness. Again. Some lessons stung.
"Leave," she commanded. "I have no use for your games."
He dropped her hand. "Take heed, please. Let the prophecy rumors die down. Surely your Agency has trouble in every city in America. I'm not asking you to stop saving the world, just do it somewhere else."
"I'm not leaving. But you are."
He muttered a curse and stalked away from her, slamming her front door behind him.
She hated him. She hated the way he sauntered in and out of her life. That he possessed not a shred of honor or valiance. That when he left, she would cry for his soul. She hated that she loved him.
And that he was fallen.