Dark Rise (Shadow & Light Book 3) - Ebook
Dark Rise (Shadow & Light Book 3) - Ebook
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After I’d agreed to do a job for the fae queen I hate, the entire world went to hell—literally.
Now it’s my job to clean up my mess before she creates new nasties with the White Grace and kills us all—yeah, my fault too.
It gets better. The Legion of angels have put a bounty on my head for the murder of the archangel Vedriel, which was in totally self-defense, but it’s not like they care.
There’s not a chance in hell I’m going down without a fight. It’s a full-time job trying to keep my own ass alive. So how am I supposed to save everyone else’s?
Don’t miss the thrilling continuation of the Shadow and Light series!
Look Inside Chapter 1
Look Inside Chapter 1
My life was a disaster. There
was no denying it anymore.
I sat in a leather armchair, whose owner made me want to gouge out my own eyeballs,
breathing in the scent of wine, polished wood, and musty antique rugs of her
Yup. I was off my rocker.
But what else could I do? Jax had been abducted by the Greater demon Degamon and
dragged to the Netherworld. I had tried and failed to summon him back to our
dimension. Then I almost died when an angel showed up and attempted to collect
the bounty on my head—a gift from the Legion of Angels—thank you very much.
Like I needed more drama in my life.
minute I sat in this stupid, expensive chair was like a week of rigorous
torture for Jax. The longer he spent in that world, the harder it would be to
get him back out. If Degamon really was going to sell him off to another demon,
it would get a hell of a lot harder.
couldn’t go to the council, the angel-born group of elders and leaders. I
didn’t trust them, and I couldn’t give them any information about Jax without
the risk of exposing him and myself. Conjuring demons was taboo. It was the
sport of half-breeds, specifically witches, and forbidden to all angel-born. If
the council found out, Jax would be shunned or worse, sent to Silent
Gallows—the only angel-born prison in North America.
demons was also a dangerous game. The occasional stupid human did it, and they
always ended up possessed or disembodied. That’s why conjuring demons was
mainly a witch’s thing as a means to increase their power by borrowing demon
magic. But the catch with tasting demon power was they always took a piece of
you—a few fingers, your teeth, eyes, your soul. It didn’t matter to them, as
long as they had a piece.
Jax had told me he’d been working some dangerous demon summoning rituals to try
and break his contract with Degamon, I’d wanted to beat him with a shovel. But
when I mentioned this to his mother, her expression had been carefully blank. I
was willing to bet Mommy Dearest had known all along that her son had been
dabbling in something seriously illegal.
woman hated my guts, but she loved her son.
knew there was nothing she wouldn’t do for him, not when she’d already lost a
daughter to a demon.
at the edge of the chair, my feet planted strategically in front of me, just in
case Mrs. Spencer changed her mind, and I had to make a break for it before she
set her rich friends to kill my demon-born ass. She’d left me sitting in the
den alone at least a half hour ago to make some calls.
Tyrius was right. Maybe this was the stupidest idea I’d ever had.
my foot on the rug, my blood pressure skyrocketed, and I wished Tyrius were in
here with me. To have him sitting on my lap would have been a real comfort.
He’d criticize the plush furnishings, rub himself on the rug to leave his scent
and hair, and maybe even spray a few spots. Mrs. Spencer would love that.
would have brought a smile on my face. But I’d left my best buddy outside by
the front door like a pair of muddy Wellingtons. I was an ass.
should be nervous,” said a male voice in a slightly mocking tone, and I turned
to see a tall man standing in the doorway. His short black hair nearly grazed
the frame as he watched me, and his dark eyes held a glint of contempt and sly
amusement, like I was the butt of some inside joke.
not nervous. Just anxious to get things going.” I narrowed my eyes. “It’s
Louis, right? How long have you been standing there watching me? That’s really
pervy, you know?”
light wrinkles around Louis’s eyes deepened with his frown. He was dressed in a
similar style to when I’d first met him, with an expensive-looking gray
business shirt and a pair of black pants. The P-shaped birthmark I spied
through his collar was the same as Jax’s. The archangel Michael’s sigil was
common to all angel-born from House Michael.
watched me for a beat longer and then sauntered into the den, rubbing his
hawklike nose with his finger. Nervous? I didn’t think so. I think he wanted me
to think he was nervous. He reminded me of a scarecrow, a very well-dressed
scarecrow. Saying the dude was creepy was an understatement.
moved with the precise and twisting grace of a snake, and I could almost
imagine a gray, forked tongue in that large mouth to match his scheming eyes.
The slight smile on his lips was conniving. A keeper of secrets? Probably. His
over-the-top concern for Jax’s mother told me the creepy man had misplaced
affection for the married woman. That could come in handy.
was a smile on his lips, but not in his dark eyes, when he turned around to
face me with his back against the mammoth-sized fireplace.
eyed me beneath his thick brows. “You said Jax was abducted by a Greater
demon?” He crossed his arms over his chest. “Is that so?”
sighed really loudly. “I should have seen this coming. You don’t believe me.”
lie all the time.”
twisted in my seat and matched my smile to his. “So do the angel-born.” No
point in denying that I was part demon, though these angel-born seemed to keep
forgetting that I was also part angel-born.
leaned forward in my chair. “Tell me, L-o-u-u-u-is,” I drawled, “do you get
dressed up for Halloween, or do you just go as you?”
glanced over my shoulder at the sound of the front doors shutting followed by
the soft murmurs of voices in the hallway. Straining my ears to catch every
nuance, I stiffened at the nervous pitch, the rise and fall of their voices
mixing with their restless energy. That was because of me. The uneven tread and
sound of soles scraping the polished floors told me there were about three.
thoughts went to Tyrius. If any of them tried something stupid, like kicking
him, I was going to go full-out Rambo on their asses.
looked back at me. The smile on the man’s face twitched. “You’re either really
brave or really stupid by coming here.” His tone wavered somewhere between sly
pursed my lips. “I’m thinking… probably a little bit of both.”
child,” mumbled Louis as he pushed off the stone fireplace and stepped closer.
“You think you’re clever, don't you? You think you’re smarter than everyone
I shook my head, anger heating my face like a sunburn. “Tyrius is the clever
one. I’m just the snotty sidekick with a tight ass.”
ugly flickered far back in Louis’s eyes. His voice turned rougher, and the
smile on his face sent a chill licking up my spine.
want to know what I think?” pressed the tall man, his face darkening and his
smile growing to show a slip of teeth.
say no,” I intoned, curling my fingers into fists, “will you stop talking and
Jax was abducted by a Greater demon,” continued Louis as though I hadn’t
interrupted him, “it was because of you, Rowyn. I think you did this. I think
you had your demon friend take him.”
mouth dropped open, my anger replaced by shock for a half a second. “You’re out
of your freaking mind.” I shivered, not knowing if I had saved Jax or damned
myself by coming here.
think I don’t know what you’re trying to do,” accused the man, his jaw
yeah? And what’s that, Einstein?”
face was an ugly mask of anger. “To infiltrate our angel-born community by
getting your dirty demon fingers around the necks of the great houses.”
stared at my fingers. “I wouldn’t call them dirty, but they could use a manicure—”
is just a ploy to get close to Celeste,” spat Louis, so close to me now that
the smell of cigarettes and old coffee made my stomach churn. “You can’t have
her.” This guy was seriously demented.
trying to save an angel-born, you half-wit,” I growled, my nails cutting into
my shaking palms. It was my turn to raise my voice. This idiot believed I was
responsible for Jax’s abduction by the Greater demon. And since he and Mrs.
Spencer seemed to be besties, I had the awful feeling she might agree. Swell.
leered down at me. “And when I find out how you did it and can trace it back to
you, don’t think you’re going to live long enough to set in motion whatever
demon scheme you had going with your kin.”
that a threat?” I growled, my blood seeming to burn under my skin. I barely
managed to resist the part of me that wanted to jump up and kick him in the
balls. Once. Twice. Okay, lots of times.
only reason you’re still breathing is because Celeste believes you,” said
Louis, seemingly pleased at my distress, almost feeding off it like a specter.
“I don’t know why, but she does.”
she’s not as stupid as you,” I answered, feeling a tad relieved that Mrs.
Spencer wasn’t orchestrating my death as we spoke. She had told me to wait here
while she made some phone calls. What was taking her so long?
deeply satisfied grin came over Louis, and his breath quickened. “You’re not as
clever as you think, Demon,” he whispered. His eyes rolled over me, very
slowly, and I had the sudden impulse to take a hot shower. “You might have
fooled Jax and seduced him with your pretty demon flesh while you flaunted your
sexuality at him,” he added. “It’s hard for men to resist the temptation of
flesh. But your whoring demon ways won’t work on me.”
the souls.” I laughed out loud, smacking my thigh and wishing I knew a spell to
make him disappear. The hair in his nose was unnaturally long and touched his
upper lip. Yikes.
smile shifted, becoming wicked. “You’re nothing but a cheap, demon succubus
that’s why you were voted Personality of the Year.” Furious, I gathered myself
and jumped to my feet. I'd had enough of his crap. I put myself right in his
face and leaned in. Louis was a head taller than me, but I didn’t care. Flipping
my jacket back, I cocked my left hip. When I was satisfied that he’d seen my
death blade, I pushed my chest out until I forced him to take a step back if he
didn’t want to be soiled by my tiny demon breasts.
smiled, making a point to look down at his groin. “You know what I think,
Louis? I think you’re all worked up and angry because you haven’t gotten laid
in a while. Probably because the one you want… isn’t on the market.”
ears turned red, and I swear I saw some steam coming out of them. “You don’t
know what you’re talking about.”
think I do. We always want what we can’t have, right?” I raised a brow. “Oh, I
get it. Even if she wasn’t married, she’d never give you the time of day. Not
up to her standards, eh? Never desired you the way you’ve been lusting over her
for years. I’m right, aren't I?” Creepy perv.
ugly noise came from Louis’s throat. With a slight flick of his wrist, a blade
appeared in his hand. Impressive. He might actually be worth the sweat of a
blood washed from Louis’s face, and his chin trembled in anger. “How about I
kill you now and save everyone the hassle of getting their hands dirty with
your demon filth. You don’t believe me? I’ll do it.”
wrapped my hand around my death blade. “Do you see me trembling in my trendy
yet economical boots here? Exactly.” I didn’t want to kill the bastard, but he
was asking for it. Mrs. Spencer wouldn’t be too pleased if she found her
manservant bleeding out on her expensive rug with my death blade in his gut.
I took a calming breath and tried to rein in my emotions. But if the idiot
moved, he was toast.
going on?” came a voice from behind me. Female, but not Mrs. Spencer’s. I
waited for Louis to sheathe his blade back in his wrist strap concealed under
his shirt before I stepped back, sheathing my own blade before it got me into
some serious trouble. I turned around slowly.
the doorway stood a young blonde woman, probably in her early twenties,
athletic in a cheerleader-type way with a voluptuous chest and a face that
could have been on the cover of Vogue. She had on too much makeup, as
though she were trying hard to hide her true beauty. Her long hair was styled
in a French braid that fell past her shoulders. She had on a pair of tight
jeans and a short, motorcycle-style black leather jacket that almost had me
hit me hard, and I clenched my jaw when I recognized who she was.
hell. I knew who she was just by the venomous look she gave me.
staring at Ellie, Jax’s fiancée.