Surprise Excerpt ~ Inheritance of Ashes - Coming this Fall

Here's a blog surprise for my readers hanging about! A pretty sizable excerpt of  Inheritance of Ashes book 3 in the Ashen Twilight trilogy which will round out the series with a conclusion. 'Inheritance' is still set for an October release and is currently one of my big projects I'm working on finishing in the next few months before prepping for release.

For those who voted to see excerpts before the release, here is a lil treat for ya! I won't say where these scenes take place but here is a snippet of what's to come. ;-)

(Keep in mind this text is a bit unedited but still cleaned up for reading purposes. Text may be different in the final release version).


Jace awakened with a loud gasp as he struggled to sit upright. He breathed in huge gulps of air as if it were the last to ever grace his presence. His bare chest heaved up and down as he took a moment to gather himself. If he were human, his body would be covered in sweat. Cold and clammy with echoes from the nightmare. His sleep cycle was completely thrown off. He was dead until the night came. Unknown to the world. But after his ordeal in the prison, he had somehow awakened before his conscious returned him to the land of the living. 

Jace took a few more deep breaths. Feeling a presence next to him, he turned to his lower right see Ariya fast asleep on his bed. She lay on her stomach, her wings splayed against her back and fluttering softly every few moments. Her dark curls fell across her face and her arm lay outstretched as if she were holding his hand or resting her arm on his chest at one point during their slumber. He peered down at his own hand, already missing her touch. Ariya.

Then he realized the Claddagh ring on his finger. Looking over at Ariya, he saw the ring he had given to her on her ring finger of her left hand. He had told her once it was his mother’s gift to him to give to whom he loved. Like the woman who had waited for her mate to return whom to her after so many years.
Would she wait for him in the same way?

He had slept the last few hours but it felt like months. From the nightmare that haunted him, it was still in his subconscious. Ariya hadn’t known what went on down there, despite him telling her. How could she know what he went through? Humans who tried to make him destroy his own house members. Ones who had looked up to him for guidance and protection like they did his Uncle Julian. A human who tried to make him feel less than a man. Less than the noble he was.

Jace shook his head. He wanted to forget it all and pretend it never happened. But somehow the more he knew he tried to suppress it, the more it would haunt him. All he wanted was peace…

With these words in his mind, he leaned down to Ariya and gently breathed in her scent. She smelled like a warm, inviting garden of fresh flowers after a cool rain. Her cinnamon brown curls were soft to the touch, as if they were made of silk. He allowed his face to graze hers, pale cold against dark brown warmth. His lips gently touched her soft skin across her cheek, eyes, nose and finally her mouth. A soft moan escaped her lips and she stirred. Jace felt his body grow rigid as if it were shutting down. He wanted to indulge in her, go into her arms and let her tell him everything would be fine because they would be together. She stirred again and he could tell she was on the verge of waking up. Something deep inside him wouldn’t let him stay. He needed to get out of this room.

Jace tossed off the sheets of his bed and stood. Already he could feel the biting tinge of hunger clenching his stomach. He would need to eat soon. First, he needed to get some air. He quickly slid into his jeans, taking quick peeks in between movements to see Ariya had fully awaken. When she settled after a quiet stir, he continued pulling up his pants then he buttoned and zipped them. They would have some down time for now but soon they would have to move on. After Julian’s reveal on the nightly news last night, who knows if any of the mortals knew where they were. And if they did, who knows what they will do to protect their livelihood. That situation was next on his agenda to take care of.

First, he needed to tend to a more important matter. Jace turned and reached for the vial on the dresser and then realized he had left the ring there. Looking back at Ariya, he realized it was her who placed it on his finger. A small smile covered his lips. She had stayed with him just like she promised. If she had left him for good…


He couldn’t think of that now. It was the only comfort he had to keep him going. The thought of Ariya being there for him, caring for him was what kept him alive in the first place. And now he knew she had actually come for him and the others. Nearly risking her life to save theirs in the process from that infernal prison.
Now he was going to turn this around in his favor.

Pocketing the vial, Jace went to Ariya and gently placed a kiss on her cheek before exiting the small condo to the outside walkway.

Outside the sun had already descended behind the horizon, leaving a soft warm yellow glow across the bed of ocean behind them. Jace would normally still be dead by now, waiting for dark of night when he could finally sleep. He wondered if there would ever come a time when he would sleep like that again. Or would he be cursed to sleep so irregularly with haunting dreams…

He leaned on the railing and breathed in the salty, clear evening air. It was cool that evening and a few of the members of the houses were wandering outside in the large parking lot that connected the three large condominiums. He didn’t know what was next. Daoine was still gone, left to who knows where, and his Uncle was busy trying to form some kind of alliance with the mortals. Rich was probably off caring for his new family with Joanna and Gael had been preparing to take Keiko as his mate. Probably now more than ever since he’d be taking the patriarch mantle in Daoine’s absence. Rich would be moving in as Patriarch and Jace would have to take his Uncle’s side in whatever matters would come in the next few days. In a way he welcomed it. It was an easier task to tackle than handling his situation with Ariya.

Just as he thought about her, Jace turned to see two figures catch his eye a few feet down the walkway.

Cidra stood with Vex towering behind her. His arms stretched out on either side of her so that she was nestled in his embrace while he gripped the railing. They were both smiling. Cidra had usually kept to herself whenever Jace saw her. She always had a 'business-as-usual' fa├žade and kept to Ariya’s side whenever she crossed into the mortal realm. Now she was smiling…and looking awfully close to Vex who looked more relaxed than Jace had ever seen him. When did this happen?

Despite their warmth and the way they gazed at each other, Jace found himself envying their comfort with each other. Perhaps it was karmic retribution on his part. After all, he had practically stolen Shelly, a fellow Nightwalker, right from under Vex shortly before her death at the hands of the elemental that was haunting Ariya. It seemed so long ago. Like decades.

Jace refused to believe he had suffered at the hands of the mortals for his betrayal. The houses had gotten too comfortable over the years and Drago had them all fooled while he hid behind the Rens to plot his takeover. Who’d have known that Daoine would fall right behind him?

With a sigh, Jace leaned forward and pulled his gaze away from Cidra and Vex. He had to stop feeling sorry for himself. If he sat around here waiting like an eager puppy for his master to come home, he’d lose his mind. There had to be something he could do to keep it occupied.

“Looks like you lost the love of your life,” a voice said next to him.

Jace turned to see Angel leaning on the railing while she cocked her head to the side and peered up at him.

He shrugged. “Does it?”

“Remember what they say. If you keep your face like that, it’ll stay that way. And that would be a shame.”

“I kind of want to be alone right now, Angel. If you don’t mind.”

She grinned. “See now judging from that look on your face, I can tell that’s exactly what you don’t need. Come on. I’ll fix you a drink. Bring Ariya with you so she can put you in a better mood.”

Jace sensed the moment she started toward the opposite end of the walkway, then stopped. It was then he remembered the vial and its contents. Angel was well versed in chemicals used to dispose of bodies they had fed on. She was leader of the Necro Cerberus, translated to Gatekeeper of the Dead. And if it was anyone who would know how to manipulate molecules, it would be her.

“On second thought,” Jace said standing upright. “I think I will take that drink after all. Ariya is resting for now. I’d prefer she not be around for the moment. Angel, I’m going to need you to help me with something.”


Melissa said...

I'm soooooo excited!!!! I love this series!!!! : )