The Starlight Witch - Ebook
The Starlight Witch - Ebook
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 2,157+ 5-Star Reviews
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The Starlight Witch is perfect for fans of urban fantasy, mystery, slow-burn romance, and humor. Get ready for this heart-pounding and laugh-out-loud magical adventure!
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "Fantastic story. Engaging right from the beginning." —Reviewer
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "A Magical, Brilliant Read!" —Reviewer
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "I loved reading each and every moment. Just enough romance and fantasy!" —Reviewer
You'll love The Starlight Witch if you like:
✔️witches and magic
✔️a cast of quirky characters
✔️paranormal women’s fiction
✔️a healthy dose of snarky humor
Finding my husband in bed with another woman was not how I planned to start my day.
Or homeless the next minute. And broke.
So, when a job comes my way from The Twilight Hotel—a paranormal hotel in midtown Manhattan that serves as a sanctuary and residence—I take it.
Cue in tattooed, sexy as sin, grumpy restaurant owner Valen, who can’t do drama or high-maintenance women. The problem? He’s cruel and dangerous.
And he’s hiding something.
Rumors arise of a dark spell that would mean the hotel's closure, and I don’t know who I can trust. Do I have what it takes to fight this new evil? We’ll see.
Look Inside Chapter 1
Look Inside Chapter 1
I stood in the doorway, staring at my husband’s naked body with his prominent, hard manhood. The voluptuous pretty brunette who climbed off him had guilt etching her face like she’d been caught stealing from the homeless. With her full cheeks and flawless skin, she appeared to be in her twenties, around half my age, with perky breasts and a tight body. She had no evidence of cellulite on her, either, but don’t worry. It’ll come.
“Leana? What? What are you doing here? You’re back early,” stuttered my husband. He covered his penis with the bedsheet made of Egyptian cotton, the ones I’d bought, not that it mattered. And not like I hadn’t seen his tiny jolly stick for the last fifteen years. He wasn’t much to look at, just a lanky body, balding head, and creeping beer gut.
Yet none of those things would’ve mattered if he had been kind.
We’d married young, both of us in our mid-twenties, and our marriage had never been perfect. From the beginning, I saw signs of his temper and narcissistic ways, but I chose to ignore them, thinking that’s what good wives did. She soldiers on, right?
The last two years had been rocky, and this past year was a total mistake. I should have called it quits years ago, but I’d been lazy. Part of me had been afraid of finding myself single again at forty-one, after all these years of being with someone—even if that someone was all wrong for me.
But not anymore.
I’d been faithful. At the very least, Martin could have done the same until we’d both declared it officially over.
This past year, I’d had my suspicions that he was cheating: the late phone calls, leaving the room to speak on the phone with his so-called boss, and the late-night office hours, when he never came home until the early morning.
I couldn’t blame only him for the marriage falling apart. First of all, he was human. I was a witch. That there should have been my red flag from the beginning. I couldn’t be totally honest with him about who I was. He could never understand me or the paranormal world I worked in. Without honesty, the marriage was doomed to fail from the beginning, and that was on me.
Yet it was fun to see him squirm a little.
I crossed my arms over my chest, playing it out. “So, this is the child you’ve been banging?”
The brunette made a face. “I’m not a child. I’m twenty-three.”
I raised my brows. “The response of a child.”
“You’re a bitch,” snapped the naked brunette. “You’re not even that good-looking. You’re all old and saggy. You probably smell. Everyone knows old people smell.”
“Shut up, Crystal,” hissed my husband. His green eyes met mine, and he blew out a breath. “We haven’t had sex in over a year. What did you expect? All men have needs.”
I snorted. “Really? You’re going to try and guilt me for your cheating?” I broke into a laugh I couldn’t hold back. And once it started, I couldn’t stop. All the emotions from the last year and the years before started pouring out of me until I was holding on to the doorframe for support.
“What’s so funny?” growled my soon-to-be ex-husband.
I wiped my eyes. “You. This. This whole thing is like a bad joke. Or is it a good joke? I don’t even know.” I looked at the brunette, who was purposely keeping her body uncovered with a defiant look in her eye.
She might have a better, younger rack than me, but that was nothing to the wisdom built of my life experiences.
“I hope you like to clean, do laundry, and cook,” I told her. “Don’t expect him to lift a finger either. Oh, he might for the first few months, but then he’ll stop. Then he’ll get angry with you if you ask for some help. Reverse psychology at its finest. Best be prepared.”
Crystal gave me an insolent smile. “I don’t do housewife.”
I gave a short laugh. “Good luck with that. You might want to start looking for your pacifier.”
“You were always such a bitch,” said my husband. He leaned back, leaving the sheet where it was and giving us a view of his man twinkie again. “You always thought you were better than me. No wonder I went looking elsewhere. And you got fat.”
My smile fell as Crystal gave a fake laugh. “That’s what happens when you’re old,” said the slut in my bed.
Forty-one wasn’t old, not by any standards. In fact, I felt like I’d finally figured out who I was and what I wanted with my life. I felt comfortable in my skin for the first time, accepting all my flaws and owning them.
After many years of hard work and dedication to my craft, I was finally coming into my own as a witch, harnessing my magic and understanding it. But my magic wasn’t connected to Earth’s elemental magic like the White witches, nor was its power channeled by borrowing it from demons as it was with most Dark witches. No, my power lay elsewhere. Granted, it was more potent at night, which stood out among witches. But that didn’t mean I couldn’t draw on it now.
It would be weak. But I only needed a little.
I’d never told Martin what I was. He had no clue. I’d never had much of a reason to. Not until this very moment.
“You know, Martin,” I said, smiling. “I never told you this, but I’m a witch.” I tapped into my will and channeled the energy that went way beyond the boundaries of the earth. It was faint, but I felt a ribbon of power churning in my core. I held it there.
Both Martin and Crystal started to laugh as expected.
“And as humans, you can’t see magic, just like you can’t see the paranormal around you.”
“She’s fucking crazy.” Martin laughed harder, and Crystal joined him.
“I’d like to give you this parting gift,” I told them after their laughter had subsided.
Martin watched me with clear amusement. “What?”
I flicked a finger, and a slip of brilliant white light sprang from my hand and crossed the room to hover above his penis.
I matched his smile, pulled on my magic, and said, “This—”
My husband let out a girlish wail of pain and terror as he stared at his penis, the tip bent at a ninety-degree angle like a broken candle. Whoops.
Crystal flew off the bed like she thought his broken penis was contagious, her eyes wide as she backed into the wall.
As the wailing heightened in pitch, I strolled into the walk-in closet, grabbed my carry-on bag, stuffed it with as many clothes as possible, and made my way out.
“What did you do to me? You crazy bitch! You fucking whore!” howled my husband.
When I reached the bedroom’s doorway, I turned around, seeing my husband red-faced with tears streaming down his cheeks. It was a good look on him.
I shot him a finger gun. “Keep it up. What? Too soon?” I couldn’t help myself. He was kinda asking for it.
“You bitch,” he wheezed, tears flowing freely down his face as he stared at his man-twig, which had nearly doubled in size and had taken on a purple color, kind of like an eggplant. Was that supposed to happen? Who knows.
“She broke his penis!” cried Crystal to someone on the other end of her cell phone. “She’s a witch! And she broke it!”
Yeah, no one was going to believe that. The witch part, I mean.
I pulled my attention back to my husband. “Consider this a divorce.”
“You’re dead!” he howled as I walked out and left the apartment. Maybe I’d gone too far. Conjuring magic before humans was forbidden. But it was too late for that. Plus, I doubted anyone would believe them if they blabbed.
A strange weight lifted from my shoulders as I hit Greenwich Avenue and turned north, the cool September air soothing my hot cheeks. My stomach rumbled, reminding me I had forgotten to eat dinner. After the events of the past hour, dinner could wait, but wine couldn’t. I needed a glass of wine.
I didn’t feel any loss or even regret. Was that bad? Was I evil? Possibly. But he had pissed me off.
“God, why didn’t I do this a long time ago?”
I paused at the street corner, waiting for the pedestrian light, and pulled the letter I’d received this morning by registered mail from my pocket. I’d read it a dozen times, but I wanted to reread it. Just to ensure I wasn’t about to make a fool of myself. My eyes rolled over the letter as I read.
Dear Leana Fairchild,
I am pleased to extend an offer of employment on behalf of the Twilight Hotel. To officially acknowledge your acceptance of this offer, or if you would like more details, please present yourself to 444 5th Avenue no later than 7 p.m.
We look forward to welcoming you aboard.
Getting job offers wasn’t unusual. I was a Merlin and had been for the last ten years. The Merlin Group stood for Magical Enforcement Response League Intelligence Network. We were the magical police, if you will, like the FBI.
I’d always told Martin that I worked the night shift at McGillis Pub, the local pub in Greenwich Village. He’d never suspected anything untoward. Of course, that was because he couldn’t have cared less.
I’d heard of the Twilight Hotel. Hell, every paranormal—witch, werewolf, shifter, or fae—knew of that hotel. But getting a job offer from them was unusual. I’d never worked for them. Ever. And I didn’t know anyone who had either. From what I knew, they were secretive and didn’t like to hire out, which explained the mountain of curiosity I felt at getting this job offer.
I checked my phone: 6:15 p.m. “Still got time.”
I stuffed the letter back in my pocket, hauled my bag up on my shoulder, and continued.
My blood pressure rose with excitement. Martin’s broken-penis episode was forgotten as I only had room for one thought in my brain. Every hired witch knew the Twilight Hotel paid well. Maybe I could finally afford a car. Wouldn’t that be something?
Maybe things were finally looking up for me—
My face smacked right into a wall.
A wall that smelled of musk and spices. It was a pleasant smell. I stepped back and blinked into the face of a handsome man with a square jaw and straight nose, the owner of the man chest I’d just assaulted with my face. Dark wavy hair brushed his broad shoulders, graying at the temples, which only made him more attractive. He was tall, the kind of tall that you had to let your head fall back to get a view. And it was quite the view.
He was hot. And he looked like he needed that glass of wine more than I did.
His eyes were dark and burned with a kind of intensity that had my insides churning. I kinda liked it too.
He wasn’t human either. That part was clear from the rolling paranormal energy emitting from him. Big and strong like he was, no doubt this hot man-beast was a were. My money was on a werewolf.
“Watch where you’re going,” he growled, practically screamed, glaring at me like I was the most hated person in all of New York City.
Not so hot anymore.
I narrowed my eyes. “I would if you didn’t take up so much space, Wall.” He might have been built like a truck, which was how it had felt walking face-first into his chest, and maybe twenty years ago, I would have ducked my head and walked away. But I didn’t. Life had made me hard.
And I’d broken a penis today. Go me!
The stranger glared at me, clearly not used to being challenged. Built the way he was, I was certain no one ever talked back. More than likely they cowered away. “The streets don’t belong to you,” he snarled.
“Don’t belong to you either.” If he was expecting an apology, he was going to wait a while. I was done apologizing in my life.
The hot man-beast watched me for a beat longer. “You crashed into me. You weren’t paying attention to where you were going.”
“Then you should have moved out of the way.” I could do this all night. Well, not really. I had to go if I wanted that job. “And why didn’t you? If you saw me coming, the gallant thing to do would be to step aside.”
His nostrils flared with anger. “Why should I move for you?” He said it like the mere fact that he was standing there meant something to me, like he was someone I should know, someone of great importance.
As far as I knew, he was a rude, sexy man-beast. That was all.
“Clearly, you left your manners at home this morning,” I told him. I refused to stare at his full, sensuous lips. Too late. I was staring. Damn. Those were some hot lips to go with the rest of his hot bod.
“You always walk around with your head in the clouds? That’s how you get killed. That’s how you get hit by a car.”
I cocked a brow. “Problem solved. Right?” So why was he still here? Why wasn’t he moving away from me?
The stranger watched me, his gaze intense. “You shouldn’t be walking around here if you don’t know where you’re going.”
I snorted. “Yeah. I don’t need your permission, buddy. I’m late for an interview. Out of my way, Wall.”
Confusion flashed in those damn fine eyes. He blinked and then walked away. My eyes, moving of their own volition, followed his fine behind until he disappeared through a multitude of humans meandering along the streets of Manhattan. Not one had any idea a werewolf walked among them—a hot, grumpy one. Yet I noticed how the humans moved away from him. They had no clue what he was, but even they could feel the ferocious, wild, and commanding energy emitting from him. He had an alpha vibe too. And I hoped never to see him again. Next time, I might not be so polite.
I let out a long sigh and started moving again, irritation fluttering through me. My body was burning up, like I’d had a sudden hot flash. Not exactly the composed, professional manner I wanted to present for the interview. I was probably red-faced. I’d look like I was nervous, which I was, but I didn’t want management to know.
Damn the hot werewolf and his hot ass.
Just as I crossed East Thirty-Ninth Street, I took a few more steps and came face-to-face with 444 Fifth Avenue.
The large limestone façade had sandstone trim, and the design included deep roofs with dormers, terracotta spandrels, niches, balconies, and railings. It had a Gothic vibe, like something Dracula would have lived in, and I loved it. Above double glass doors were large, glowing white letters that read, THE TWILIGHT HOTEL. The main entrance had a double-height archway on Fifth Avenue. It was a glorious beast—all thirteen floors of it.
A soft shimmer fell over the building in a glittering spectrum of color. I recognized the glamour meant to keep any wandering humans from thinking they could get a room. To them, the building likely appeared as just a run-down, abandoned building or a building under construction—anything to make them move along and forget quickly.
My heart pounded against my chest, like a kid entering high school for the first time. I wiped my sweaty palms on my jeans before reaching for the handle.
It occurred to me then that I had no place to stay tonight or the nights after this one. Basically, I was homeless. All I had was the bag on my shoulder. I’d figure something out. I always did. Besides, things weren’t so bad.
“Broke a penis today,” I muttered, proud of myself. “Nothing can beat that.”
Or so I thought.
With bated breath, I pulled the door open and walked in.