THE PEACEKEEPER JOURNALS III: THE SCEPTRE OF POWER draws readers thoroughly into the spellbinding romance and innovative story line.
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The war continues as the forces of good and evil both struggle to gain control of the beautiful city of San Francisco and the world.
Brianna is an immortal witch from Ireland who has been sent by her mentor to help Kira and the Chosen. She brings news of a powerful Sceptre, one lost for centuries. A weapon that if found, could help them destroy the demons. Danolas can't quite handle Brianna's open, earthy sensuality, but he finds himself attracted to the witch, despite the fact she's the opposite of the mate he's always dreamed of. As they travel through the Emerald Isle to find the special talisman, evil discovers their plans and Brianna's life is threatened. But, all is not as it seems, and when tragedy strikes, Danolas must put his prejudice aside and decide if the attraction he feels for this Irish witch is only lust...or a love that will last for all eternity.
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How about an excerpt?
Brianna wandered into the kitchen and pulled open the refrigerator door. Her hum of appreciation was almost undone as her mouth watered copiously at the display of food inside. "I'm a thinking I'll like staying here," she muttered to herself. Spying a radio on the counter, she turned it on and found some tunes she recognized. Soon, the music was screaming full blast as Brianna dug into the fridge pulling out plates of leftovers. "I got you under my skin," she sang the title of U2's classic song as she danced and shimmied to the music. She did a quick little clog step as she stuck her head inside the cool of the icebox, then followed it up with an intricate wiggle of her ass as she backed away.
That's the way Danolas first saw her. He swore his heart stopped beating as he watched the sweet curves of her rear sway to the rhythm of the music. He blinked as he got a good look at the long sleek lines of her legs that showed under the shapeless T-shirt she wore. He gave a soundless whistle as she backed out of the refrigerator. She may have the mouth of a cockney street urchin, but she had the legs of a faerie princess. She didn't see him as she danced over to the counter. Her slightly off tune rendition of the popular song went unnoticed as he looked closer at her.
Her dirt brown hair trailed over her shoulders all the way past her hips and even its dull color couldn't detract from the silky look of it. When she placed the plates of food on the table, the T-shirt clung to her briefly and Danolas felt a punch of heat as it outlined a nicely curved body and slender waist. His body stirred, and again he wondered what it was that made this woman affect him in this most basic way. She turned back to the fridge and bent low to grab something out of the bottom shelf. Danolas couldn't help a groan as the T-shirt hiked up, giving him a tantalizing glimpse of the shadow between her thighs. His cock pulsed insistently as it rose up, waiting for him to take that final step forward to her. He briefly entertained the thought of pushing her against the refrigerator and driving himself deep inside her sexy body. The thought was so foreign to him, he almost dropped his staff in shock. As it was, he bobbled it, and the end fell against the counter with a sharp thud. Brianna gave a loud gasp and tried to stand, banging her head on the door of the fridge. Colorful curses filled the air as she spun around, sending a slap of power right at him. He deflected it, but it was so strong he was pushed backwards. He narrowed his eyes in surprise, but pointed his staff at the furious witch, infuriated that she dared to send her power at him. "Enough!"
It took all Brianna had not to scream in frustration. She glared at him, pulling back her magick, but allowing him to see it was still there at her fingertips waiting to be used if needed. "What is it with you Yanks? Always frightening a body to death!" She glared around the room. "Is there anyone else who'd like to start the day by scaring me?"
"Would you care to explain that cryptic comment?"
She rolled her eyes at him. "Now don't you just sound like the Lord of the Manor." She gave an unladylike snort and turned her back on him rudely.
"Don't any of you people knock?"
"I don't have to knock," Danolas said, his voice like ice. "I live here too"
Brianna gaped at him over her shoulder. "Go on. You didn't sleep here."
The thought of him sleeping under the same roof unnerved her. Even though she despised him thoroughly, her body was singing a completely different tune. Best they stay far…far apart.
"No," he answered her silent plea. "I was busy at The Keep. But I often stay here. I have a private room downstairs." He lifted an arrogant brow at her disgruntled moan, and stepped around so they were facing each other again. "Is there a problem?"
She rubbed the top of her head. "Other than having a concussion, not being able to sleep and being hungry, no…things are brilliant."
"Use a healing spell."
She offered him a look of dislike. "Oh, aye. I never thought of that. I'm so glad you're here to help me make it through the day."
"You are, perhaps, the rudest woman I've ever met."
Brianna inclined her head. "From one such as you…I'll take that as a compliment." She slapped some mayonnaise on bread and then grabbed several thick slices of meat. "Why are you here anyway?"
Danolas willed his body and temper to calm down. Why he wanted to shut her up by kissing her senseless made about the same amount of sense anything else did when it came to dealing with her. He thought briefly of his earlier conversation with Jorad. His acolyte swore he'd never gotten any phone call, so now he wondered if Brianna had lied to him, or just made a mistake. "I stopped by to make sure you were all right."
She stopped in mid-bite. "You did?" Her eyes narrowed suspiciously.
He took a breath and counted to ten. "Because…I'm the High Priest of San Francisco. It's my duty to make sure you are taken care of. You are in my city, under my umbrella of protection."
Tossing her head, she took another bite. She chewed it completely before responding. "So, I'm a duty now, am I? Well, aren't you hospitable."
A dull pain started in Danolas' temple. "Are you always this argumentative?" He shook his head. "And here, Aebh said you were her best student."
She jumped on that. "You spoke to the High Priestess? When? Where?"
Danolas walked past her, making her wait as she had him. He opened the fridge door and pulled out a pitcher of sweet tea, his favorite non-alcoholic beverage. Once he'd poured himself a glass and taken several long swallows, he turned back to her. He was pleased to see that she was fuming at the wait. He chided himself for the satisfaction that one act gave him.
"I was concerned when you mentioned our missives had gone astray. All the reports were sent by a special messenger who shouldn't have been compromised But he was…he never arrived at Dunguaire Castle, so you thought we were ignoring you." He took another quick swallow and eyed Brianna's sandwich. She hunched over it protectively, like it was her last meal. Sighing, he
started making one for himself.
"Anyway…I used my scrying pool. I had tried a few times before, but received no answer. I thought at the time Aebh was busy, or elsewhere, but after listening to you, I wasn't so sure."
"But you got through to her?"
He nodded. "Yes. It took a bit of time, but I was able to reach her. All has been reported and ties between our two peoples are as strong as ever."
She visibly relaxed. "Brilliant. She was very worried, and hurt you wouldn't return her messages."
Danolas frowned. He still had some investigating to do. He didn't know what had blocked the scrying or made the messenger vanish. "Whether you believe it or not, Aebh is the most important witch in my life. I wouldn't do anything to hurt her. In fact, I'd do just about anything she asked of me. Which brings me to the main reason I came here this afternoon."
She lifted an eyebrow. "And that is?"
Putting out his hand he held it, palm up, in front of her. Automatically, Brianna took it. He was sure she knew the ancient greeting as well as she knew her own name. Smiling with a trace of smugness, he turned his hand over so his ring of office gleamed in the single shaft of sunlight that had found its way into the kitchen. Yellow gold with a diamond at least three carats in weight, it was spelled to glow with the power of the High Priest's authority. It was an impressive and intimidating sight.
She frowned at the ring and then up at him.
His smile grew. This was going to be very satisfying. "I give you my ring, Brianna Muldoon, and ask for your pledge. Aebh feels you should be under my protection, become part of my society. She has offered you and your power to me and mine. From this time forth you are under my authority. From this time hence you belong to me."
*end of excerpt*
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