USA Today Bestselling Authors
A kelpie, an incubus and two wraiths walk into a bar…
Things were going so well until Macey got kidnapped. Again. Except this time, the kidnapper knows exactly why he has her, and none of his plans are good news.
She could wait for her men to save her, but then again, she’s not the kind of Princess who needs a Prince to save the day.
A reverse harem (still) drenched in Scottish mythology. Book 2 in the Seven Wardens series.
The book opens with Macey and her men visiting Nessie, only it’s not Nessie and it takes a bit for Macey to figure it out. Macey is in a dungeon, the Voice is torturing her. When she wakes, she meets a mouse, Luch. It’s Luch who tells her that Amber is also imprisoned here and not in good shape.
Now the Voice has been torturing Amber far longer than Macey. In the visions the Voice has projected on her a kelpie will kill her. She is sure she will die now and by Macey’s hand.
This is a favorite scene.
“Now, I’m going to go back in there,” Amber continued. “I’m no longer alone and I’m no longer bound. We can fight him together. There’s no point in leaving now while we’re already here.”
SO CONFIDENT. IT’S GOING TO BE HEARTBREAKING ONCE YOU REALISE THAT YOU’VE NEVER LEFT.
Suddenly, the world evaporated. It was like the people around Macey suddenly dissolved into mist and drifted away, leaving her alone. Well, not quite alone.
Amber was by her side. There was nothing else. Not even colour. They were standing on a white floor, but there were no walls, no nothing. Just endless whiteness.
“Amber?” Macey asked carefully, “Are you seeing the same?”
“If you mean a lot of white, then yes. And no Izban.” Her voice was quivering slightly.
THE NEXT TIME YOU’LL SEE HIM WILL BE ON THE DAY OF YOUR DEATH.
“Stop being so dramatic!” Macey shouted, trying to convince both herself and Amber that they needn’t be afraid.
The Voice ignored her.
LET’S CONTINUE WHERE WE LEFT OFF EARLIER.
Mist drifted into the air around them, forming shapes and colours, until they were suddenly back in the courtyard where Macey had first laid eyes upon Amber. She still didn’t know what that girl was, except that she was strong. Incredibly strong.
“I will get out of here, I will get out of here,” Amber began to whisper, a desperate mantra. “I will get out of here. I will…”
YOU WON’T. NEITHER WILL YOU, LITTLE KELPIE.
Without warning, they were ripped apart, flying through the air until they landed roughly on opposite ends of the courtyard. Ignoring the pain in her limbs, Macey jumped to her feet. She could guess what the Voice was planning next.
BEITHIR. KILL HER.
A beithir! Finally, Macey knew what Amber was. And it scared her a little. She didn’t know a lot about beithirs except that they could kill in a variety of ways. Their fangs were poisonous, they could control the weather, they could fly and attack you from above. When they shifted, of course. So far, Amber had stayed human, which is why Macey hadn’t figured out her species before. It was hard not to recognise a shifted beithir… there weren’t any other supernaturals that looked like a giant snake.
Amber was still on the ground, weakly trying to get to her feet. She’d expended too much energy; she wasn’t going to be much of a threat.
But… when had reality been taken over by the Voice? Had it been after Amber attacked Macey with lightning? Or before? If it was before… then Amber would still have enough power to do another such attack. And Macey wasn’t sure if she could escape her fate a second time. Had the Voice let them play out their battle in their minds so he could see what was going to happen? Did he want to see how they would escape so he could prevent it from ever happening?
Macey shivered. How was she supposed to fight someone who could play with her perception of what was real and what wasn’t? She was still having trouble believing that she hadn’t just spoken to her men. Were they really coming for her? Was Izban actually able to do a tracking spell, or had that bit been Amber’s wishful thinking?
KILL HER, the Voice repeated and this time, Amber was magically dragged onto her feet by an unseen force. She wavered, but somehow managed to stand. Tiny sparks of lightning began to flicker around the girl’s fingers and Macey prepared for the inevitable.
But wait… she was no longer wearing the copper cuffs. That had to mean that the battle had taken place and their combined power had opened them.
Was the Voice aware of that? Did he want an execution execution or a cat fight?
Amber opened her mouth, but Macey couldn’t hear what she was saying. They were too far apart. Well, that could be rectified.
Macey carefully walked towards Amber, aware that there might be a dangerous surprise waiting at every step. Earlier, there’d been guards lying dead or unconscious all over the courtyard. This time, they were alone.
She shook her head in confusion. There was no way of telling what was real and what wasn’t. Maybe she was still in her cell. Maybe she’d never even met Amber and this was all one giant illusion.
Suddenly, the air in front of her flickered and someone appeared. Someone very familiar with very blue hair.
KILL HER OR I WILL KILL HIM.
Amber’s eyes widened as she saw her friend. He didn’t move; he seemed more statue than living being. Macey walked around him and took a closer look.
His eyes were moving but the rest of him wasn’t. His face was an expressionless mask, but his eyes told her of his fear.
She could almost believe that he was real. That he was in danger.
A lightning bolt hit the ground next to her and she jumped back in surprise. Amber seemed to be convinced that Izban was real.
Another bolt of lightning crashed down at Macey’s side, and she almost jumped back. If she was going to have Amber around, then she’d probably better get used to having this happen.
“Amber,” she tried to whisper, but her voice was hoarse, as if from a lack of water. That was odd. Unless there were other side effects of the visions the Voice had given them.
There wasn’t any answer.
Macey steeled herself, then waved her hand through Izban’s still form, completely unsurprised when her hand passed right through him. Another visual trick then.
“Amber, please,” she shouted, the wind that was beginning to rage stealing her words. Potentially the other woman’s doing too. She’d heard that beithirs were storm creatures, not just lightning ones. “He’s not real.”
Her words weren’t having any effect, and one look at the redhead revealed just how bad things were. Her eyes had taken on a crazed look, and there was no doubt about how mad the woman was.
“AMBER!” she shouted even louder, but again, no response.
Sucking in a deep breath, she did the only thing she could think of, and unleashed a ball of water at the girl.
A sharp squeal, followed by a calming in the winds, told her the trick had worked even better than she’d intended.
“What did you do that for?” Amber shouted, venom almost as poisonous as her fangs dripping from her tone.
“He’s not real,” Macey said softly, ignoring the glares she received in return. “Look.” She passed her hand through the still form of the blue-haired man, and Amber’s green eyes widened.
“How do I know he’s not trapped somewhere here?” Her voice cracked as she spoke, and Macey’s heart went out to her. She felt the same way when she thought of her own men in danger, so there was very little doubt in her mind how Amber felt about Izban.
Good job he seemed to feel the same.
“Because I was with him before I was taken,” she replied softly, hoping the Voice wouldn’t be able to hear her whispers, but knowing that hope was likely in vain.
“You were?” Amber perked up at that, and Macey smiled.
“Yes. He was trying to find you.”
I SAID TO KILL HER.
Amber sighed. “He’s so demanding,” she tried to joke.
“And throws a lot of tantrums,” Macey added.
“What do we do now?”
“I suppose you try and kill me.”
Maybe not her best idea, but they at least had to pretend for the moment.
“That seems a little counterproductive.”
Macey cracked a smile. She could get used to having Amber around if she was going to make comments like that.
“Just while we think of an actual plan.”
This time, Amber nodded. “Okay, sounds like the best idea we have.”
“Which isn’t saying a lot.”
The red-head laughed. “No, it really doesn’t.”
She took two steps back and squared off against Macey, pushing her sleeves up and readying herself.
“Prepare to die, bitch,” Amber taunted.
“Bring it on,” Macey replied, unable to help the amused smile tugging at her lips. When she knew the other woman wasn’t actually going to be aiming for her, she kind of looked forward to facing off against her. It was just an intense kind of training really. Her men would be happy.
Amber struck first, sending twin bolts of lightning either side of Macey.
Not waiting another moment, Macey summoned mini balls of water, and began juggling them in the air to gain momentum. Then, one after the other, she began to fling them at Amber, making sure each one narrowly missed the girl’s head. Though one did accidentally come too close, luckily, Amber was quick enough to avoid it.
She must be running on adrenaline though. She’d been weak to start with and could only be getting worse by the second.
Maybe that was the Voice’s plan. To wear them out to the point where they were no longer able to even think of fighting back. That way, their minds would be easy to slip into, and he could take whatever control he wanted.
Wasn’t that a cheery thought?
The two women danced around each other, flinging their powers back and forth with increasing ferocity. It was almost a battle of who could conjure the most elaborate piece of magic.
So far, Amber was winning. She’d conjured a massive snake, that probably looked something like her in shifted form, and made it coil around Macey. Being inside the electricity had been invigorating, and all she’d been able to see were the bright sparks coming off it.
Once the snake’s coils had receded, she caught Amber’s eye, trying to ensure the woman would do exactly the same again. Only this time, Macey would add to the power and do…. something. She wasn’t all that sure what, but it was worth a shot.
“When you two are quite done, how about we actually consider getting you out of here?” a soft female voice sounded.
Greenwood, Laura. Seven Wardens Omnibus: Books 1-4 (Seven Wardens Collections) (pp. 278-283). Peryton Press. Kindle Edition.
With the help of a mermaid they get to Scotland and a messenger from Malan is there waiting. Before she would get their men she wanted to meet Nessie, who had thus far been ignoring her. A touch of blackmail if you will. Once reunited with their men, they find they actually have a bit of a time limit to fix everything.
A visit to the Sith and Macey takes on the final warden Air. Some mysterious chairs, a secret revealed, plenty of travel and new folks and just one thing solved.
I love these books, they are creative, sexy and full of suspense and intrigue.
I can’t wait to read the next book in this series.
5 Contented Purrs for Laura and Skye!
Click the Cover for Buy Links and More!
Skye MacKinnon is a USA Today & International Bestselling Author whose books are filled with strong heroines who don’t have to choose.
She embraces her Scottishness with fantastical Scottish settings and a dash of mythology, no matter if she’s writing about Celtic gods, cat shifters, or the streets of Edinburgh.
When she’s not typing away at her favourite cafe, Skye loves dried mango, as much exotic tea as she can squeeze into her cupboards, and being covered in pet hair by her two bunnies, Emma and Darwin.
Laura is a USA Today Bestselling Author of paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary romance. When she’s not writing, she can be found drinking ridiculous amounts of tea, trying to resist French Macaroons, and watching the Pitch Perfect trilogy for the hundredth time (at least!)