How about some love for paranormal romance today?
BOUND BY MAGICK: HEART OF DARKNESS by LAUREN DANE
Copyright 2011, Lauren Dane
All Rights Reserved, The Berkley Publishing Group
She blushed and Nell strode up to the table with William Emery, her husband.
“Why the hell are you still here?” Nell demanded as William bent to kiss Meriel’s cheek. Though he’d met the man who had eyes for no one but his wife, Dominic glared at his audacity.
The two sat as if they meant to stay a while. Casual. But Dominic liked the expression on Nell’s face. Intent on running her prey to ground.
“How could I have gotten that kiss if I’d left?” Meriel winked at Nell, who glowered and turned it on Dominic.
Nell turned her attention to Dominic. “And why are you allowing this? I can’t be with her twenty-four-seven. I’m counting on you to keep her out of trouble.
He kept his fingers with Meriel’s and looked to her before speaking. “It was important she hold her ground.”
He’d done it and nearly given himself an ulcer having to sit there and not rush her from the place. And he didn’t regret it when she gave him a beautiful smile.
“I know, right?” Meriel looked to Nell.
Nell, unable to hold a smile back, shook her head as she looked to Dominic. “Yeah, yeah, he’s the cat’s meow. What’s going on?”
The two leaned in close and began to speak while William held out a hand. “Can I buy you a drink? We aren’t doing much of that at home as the missus is in the family way.”
Nell looked up and sighed. “I thought we agreed not to announce it to the universe for a while.”
“He’s your best friend’s whoosit, bond thing. Of course she’s going to tell him, even if it’s inadvertent.”
Dominic liked the energy between Meriel’s friend and her husband. They clearly liked each other as well as loved. Tom hadn’t really dated when Dominic had been growing up. None of his friends had gotten married yet either. He hoped the lack of exposure to working relationships wouldn’t be too much of a detriment with Meriel.
“Mazel tov.” Dominic raised his glass.
“We’re still going to dinner tomorrow night. Just a reminder. This does not trump that.” Nell sent a raised brow to her husband.
“Who am I to deny you anything?”
“Are we going to find this mage stalking Meriel? Or can I get her the hell away from here?”
Nell raised a brow his way. “Gage is here and doing his business. Meriel has given me some clues and so now I think it would be good to get up on out of here and leave.”
“I think you should come to Heart of Darkness.” Meriel looked to Nell and then over at William. “Nell, you can check the wards and security yourself and if it passes inspection, I can report on it next week at council.”
Nell sighed and William laughed, reaching out to touch her cheek.
“Nell hates the nightlife and does not like the boogie, I’m afraid.” Meriel teased.
“Even though she usually ends up having a good time.” William rarely took his gaze from his wife.
“Yes, well, it’s probably more fun than watching skanks rub themselves all over you like homeless cats.”
Meriel looked to Dominic and winked. Did she think he was amused by all this?
“My darling Meriel,” he said this silkily as he kissed her knuckles, “I don’t want to go anywhere tonight with this asshole out and about. I want to get you home where you’re safe.”
William shifted in his chair. “Glad to know it’s not just me. I agree with Dominic. We’re doing dinner tomorrow, we can go afterward.” He shrugged one shoulder. “I’ve checked out a few nightclubs in town, you know, to get the lay of the land. Maybe we can talk about that sometime.”
Nell nodded. “They’re right, Meriel. Not that, you know, I’m not chomping at the bit to go clubbing and all. Until we get a better handle on just what’s happening, it’s best for you to be extra wary. I was concerned before, now I’m convinced it’s mages here looking for witches to grab. I’m putting a few more people on a team to run these mages to ground. As for Heart of Darkness, Gage has already checked the wards there, you have too. It can wait another day.”
Nell turned to Dominic. “You know she’ll be far stronger after the ascension.”
Scandalized, Meriel whacked Nell’s arm. “Shut up! I won’t allow this to be used to push him into the ascension.”
Nell whacked Meriel’s arm right back and snorted. “Fuck you, Meriel. I’m saying what needs to be said and you’re being a dumbass.”
“This is my bond. This is my ascension and if I can tell Edwina to back off, I can sure say it to you. She’s scarier anyway. This is about not only my bond, but about our clan and mine and Dominic’s future. I won’t rush. I’m not some weakling of a witch as it is, thank you very much for the confidence.”
So fierce. She was so deliciously hot and fierce right then. A shiver ran through him, driving him to make her safe, to make her his.
“I’ve already told her I wanted to do it. We were discussing the particulars when this happened.”
Nell smirked and Meriel growled. “Good. Talk some sense into her then. Go home, Meriel. Get the hell off the streets or I’ll assign a guard to you full time.”
Dominic was torn about this. He wanted her protected, but he was perfectly capable of physically protecting her. They really had no idea what he’d spent most of his twenties doing.
Dominic knew the smile on his face was nearly feral, but this was getting taken care of his way, damn it. “Why don’t you two come with us to Meriel’s father’s garden?”
Her eyes popped open as she gaped at him. It made him laugh, even has he knew it would have been better not to show her any amusement or she’d try to get around him.
Today’s winner will receive a signed copy of HEART OF DARKNESS and a signed copy of my latest de La Vega book, REVELATION.
What types of paranormal books do you like most? Anything you’d like to see more of in 2012?