Today is a guest post by author (and my friend) Tami Lund. Read an excerpt from her new book Of Love And Darkness below:
Gavin whipped the car into the driveway of the basic brick ranch home she shared with William, and skidded to a stop inches from the closed garage door. Ignoring her completely, he unfolded his tall frame from the driver’s seat, strode up the steps of the front porch, and headed toward the door.
Sydney climbed out of the car and hurried after him. “Wait,” she said, recalling that he actually did not know her stepbrother. “I should probably warn you—”
The words were out a scant second too late.
The front door opened and a hulking figure loomed behind the glass storm door. Gavin’s steps faltered as his gaze swept over the closely cropped blond hair, smooth-shaven face, narrowed brown eyes, and rigid set of the thick jaw. His gaze travelled south, to take in the muumuu decorated with cabbage-sized flowers visible under a hot-pink satin robe. Thick, tree trunk-like, shaven legs could be seen under the hem of the muumuu, and feet that were at least a size thirteen were shoved into clearly custom-made hot-pink high-heeled slippers with a fluffy, pink ball of puff on top.
“You have got to be kidding me,” Gavin said as he turned to face Sydney, with an accusatory look in his eye. “This is your Fate?”
“This is my stepbrother,” she retorted as she shoved past him, jerked open the storm door and allowed herself to be pulled into a hug by the huge man on the other side.
The above describes William, at least on the outside. He’s also a thousand-year-old Fate, whose job it is to protect Sydney, the last known Chala on earth. Like all Fates, William takes his job seriously, especially so when Gavin Rowan, a cursed Rakshasa with a reputation that far precedes him, enters Sydney’s life, saves her from certain death, and then determines she is his mate.
William isn’t particularly thrilled with this discovery. When I meet him for tea and an interview at the historic Holly Hotel, he is conservatively dressed in a simple black sheath dress with a pair of red pumps on his feet and a severely cut, shoulder-length, dark-haired wig. After discussing the great deal he got on the shoes despite the fact that his feet are so large they require a special order, we settle into seats at a table near a window draped with frilly curtains. He orders a pot of Earl Grey and I ask for a platter of assorted finger sandwiches. Make that two, actually, I decide while eying William’s impressive physique. Dressed like a woman or not, I suspect the man can put back food.
“She isn’t his mate,” he says before I can even ask the first question that isn’t related to shoes.
“He sure seems determined he is,” I point out, gently, as I can tell this topic upsets the Fate. Several days ago when I inquired about this interview, he had informed me that, although Sydney had only been aware of his existence since she was thirteen, he had been watching over her since she was a baby. He was quite attached to the Chala, and wanted nothing but the best for her. After all, she has a long and significant life ahead of her.
“That isn’t how it works,” William insists. “She is a Chala, the rarest and most important of all Light Ones. She needs to mate with a Light One. Another Chala hasn’t been spotted in hundreds of years. Her job is to repopulate the world with Light Ones and more Chala, so that the Rakshasa do not wipe them out and thus take over.”
“What happens if the Rakshasa wipe out the Light Ones?”
The server appears, filling our teacups before wrapping the teapot in a coozy and then excusing herself and leaving. William stirs honey into his tea and explains, “The Rakshasa think of humans as snacks, not as equal beings within this world. And their appetites are voracious. Left unchecked, they will decimate the population, undoubtedly within a few decades.”
My eyes widen. “Are you serious?” I am unable to comprehend my species being wiped out in a matter of decades. We have always considered ourselves the top of the food chain. The top of every chain, frankly. But then again, most of us are unaware of the paranormal world that exists right alongside us. Sometimes, right next door. Or in the next cubicle.
William’s grim nod speaks volumes. “The Light Ones protect humans. Unfortunately, they are not particularly good at military strategy, unlike the Rakshasa, who are cunning, wise, and physically powerful. Oh, and once upon a time, Gavin was one of their leaders, and he’s the strongest and most cunning of them all.”
“So it’s a good thing he’s on our side now.”
A scowl mars William’s features. “I suppose his knowledge could be useful.” His words are grudging. “Still, I refuse to believe he is Sydney’s mate.”
“That isn’t how it works. Chala mate with Light Ones. Rakshasa are hardwired to want to kill Chala, not – not, er, mate with them. It won’t work.”
William is rather insistent, although I can tell his mind is churning with the idea that Gavin can help the Light Ones defeat the Rakshasa. I cannot help but wonder how this will all work out, because I have read the first few chapters of the book, and Gavin is equally as insistent that Sydney is his mate, and I doubt very much he will let her cross-dressing Fate stand in his way. Assuming, of course, he can convince Sydney she should mate with him. So far, the odds are not in his favor.
This, I suspect, is bound to get interesting. Good thing the book is now available, so I can read it to find out how these three strong, opposing personalities manage to find some middle ground.
OF LOVE AND DARKNESS kicks off the new Twisted Fate shape-shifter series. There are two kinds of shifters: Rakshasa and Light Ones. Rakshasa want to snack on human bones. Light Ones want to protect the humans.
Unfortunately, the Rakshasa are currently winning the battle, as the Light Ones are not fertile. Only one type of Light One, exceedingly rare females called Chala, are able to produce offspring. The Rakshasa know this, and have managed to nearly decimate the population.
Enter Gavin Rowan, a cursed Rakshasa who believes he is a Light One. He feels all his Rakshasa urges to kill, but has been cursed to protect the Light Ones instead.
Throw Sydney Amataya into the mix. She is a Chala– except she doesn’t know it. At least not until Gavin saves her from a Rakshasa attack and then declares her as his mate.
But that’s not how Sydney operates. Encouraged by her cross-dressing Fate, William, she refuses Gavin’s claim. If he wants to mate with her–once she gets over the shock of discovering this supernatural world, that is–he’s going to have to woo her, impress her, wine and dine her. Romance her. She deserves no less, end of the world be damned.
This book is available on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1GLzTzI
Tami Lund is the author of the Twisted Fate series, as well as a number of other books, including another series about magical beings called Lightbearers and the shifters who hate to love them. She loves to live, laugh, and love, and does her best to ensure the characters in her books do the same. After they’ve overcome a few seemingly insurmountable obstacles first, of course.
If you’d like to learn more about Tami, she loves to be stalked on social media:
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Webpage (there’s a free read available ONLY on her website!): http://tamilund.com