by Hildie McQueen
Cynden Frasier (Cyn) is a member of a group of immortal warriors, the Protectors, assigned to protect humans in Atlanta, Georgia, the epicenter of a major uprising in demon activity. When Cyn is approached by a beautiful woman in a dirty alley, he is intrigued by the fact that she can see him for what he is, a terrifying demon slayer, and still dares to approach him.
Emma Blake, a half-demon, has to convince Cyn to help rescue her sister from powerful demons. Terrified that the Protector will kill her if he realizes what she is, she still goes against every instinct and approaches Cyn for help. Despite knowing that she is leading them both into territory so wrought with treachery, neither of them may survive.
Can Cyn and Emma overcome betrayal, the ancient rules that prevent Protectors from taking a wife, unless she is his one true mate? And if they do, will it even matter?
Copyright © Hildie McQueen
All rights reserved — a Crescent Moon Press publication
The scene she walked upon shocked her to the core. She let out a horrified shriek and stumbled backward.
Cyn was chained to a tree by his wrists. His arms stretched up over his head. His torso striped with lash marks. The ground drank the blood that dripped from his wounds. A demon whipped him. She tried to run toward Cyn, but before she could reach him, Gerard yanked her back by the hair.
He held her in place, not flinching when Emma dug her fingernails into his hand. He swung her around and slapped her across the face so hard, she saw stars.
"It's time to pay dear Emma." He whispered into her ear while he stroked her throbbing cheek in a rough caress. His long fingernails cut into her skin as they trailed down the sides of her face. Emma continued to struggle, but his hold was too strong.
The Master demon's cruel eyes met hers and she shivered at the evil in them.
"You have a decision to make."
"No!" Emma screamed when Briana appeared, also chained to a tree. Her sister's sobs echoed through the trees.
"Stop! Let them go!" Emma kicked him and held a dagger that appeared in her fist, at Gerard's neck. "Let them go or I swear I will cut your damn head off!"
Before she could utter another word, the dagger disappeared out of her hand and into his. Gerard swung and hit her with the back of his hand. This time she fell to the muddy ground. She struggled against the overpowering urge to just shut her eyes.
He motioned for two demons to hold her. They took her arms and jerked her to her feet. Gerard moved to stand between Cyn and Briana. He held up the dagger.
"Look, not only is your judge and jury here, but she also brought the weapon that will end one of your miserable lives." Gerard stepped toward Cyn and yanked his head back by his hair. "So dear Emma, will I kill your lover or will I kill your sister?"
Cyn glared at Gerard with defiance.
Gerard made a great show with his arms open wide as he walked to Briana and held the dagger against her heart. Briana shrieked and tried to move away from it. Gerard looked back at Emma, his blood red eyes taunting her.
"The choice is yours. If you don't make it, I kill them both."
"Why are you doing this? I can't make this choice." Emma looked from Briana to Cyn, who watched her with resignation in his eyes. He expected her to pick Briana.
"I can't choose, please."
"I don't have all night!" Gerard snapped and stalked back to Cyn and began to push the tip of the dagger into his throat. A trail of blood trickled down Cyn's neck.
"Stop!" Emma gasped. She began to shake all over. "I made my decision."
Briana's eyes widened. "You bitch! You would pick him over me? Your own sister!"
"No, I am not picking either one."
The demons let go of her arms. Her legs gave out and she fell limp to the ground. "Gerard let them go. Take me. Kill me in their place."
"No Emma!" Cyn strained against the chains. "Don't do this, he will kill us all anyway." Emma looked at him and mouthed, I love you.
Everyone's eyes followed the dagger's flight through the air until it impaled Emma's chest.
A scream echoed in her ears, she wasn't sure if it was Cyn's, Briana's, or her own. The blackness of the fog wrapped around her as she fell to the muddy ground.
4 STARS! "McQueen pens and exciting visit to an alternate reality where demons live like normal people, with some evil and some not".... **** -- Romantic Times