|Not the actual cover.|
THE QUEEN OF SWORDS tells the story of a white witch who returns every hundred years to reunite with her soul mate, who's been earthbound by a dark wizard's curse. Will she find a way for them to be together this time around?
Here's a wee taste:
Graham had just come upon the misplaced diaries—in the cupboard under the stairs—when he caught a whiff of something burning. Concerned, he stepped back into the foyer. A quick look around revealed nothing unusual. He sniffed the air, again detecting smoke, though none of the toxic undertones of a house fire. Neither did it smell of a choked chimney. It was, in fact, pleasantly herbal—like the juniper-laced bonfires of Beltane he knew in his youth. Was Branwen burning incense...or Benedict trying out a new pipe tobacco?
Shrugging it off, he grabbed the box of diaries and headed for the stairs. As he climbed, so did the smoke. A picture of Caitriona came into his mind. Or was it Catharine...or the new one? He couldn’t be sure as she was naked and her hair hung loose. As she reached for him, he saw something odd: a blue fire the size of a pilot light in the center of each palm.
Like moth to flame, you yearn for light. Come from shadow into my sight.
The words whispered. Caitriona disappeared. Desire blossomed. What was going on? At the top of the stairs, he was sweating and dizzy. Every nerve ending, every vein, burned like fire. He raced down the hall toward his bedchamber, dropping the box as he shot through the doorway. Bending to collect his spilled diaries, he startled at what he saw:
He had no hands. And no feet.
The smoke and ethers enveloped, pulling him apart cell by cell until he felt like the sands of time moving through an hourglass. The cosmos was silent except for a haunting echo—like the sound inside a seashell. He felt at once connected to everything and nothing. Adrift yet highly attuned; blind yet all seeing; numb yet hypersensitive; defenseless yet omnipotent. Others were there, too—phantasmal energies blowing past and passing through like sleet.
The next thing he knew, he was on his back, winded and disoriented. The room was dark save for the flicker of a solitary candle. He could make out only two pale shapes. The larger one, he presumed, was a bed, the smaller one, by the window, his summoner. His nostrils flared, seeking her scent, but found only the spices of the smoke.
“I told ye to stay away from me,” he growled. “Why did ye not listen?”