Sample Sunday – Awoken

 

Awoken, the final full-length book in the Djinn Wars series (a holiday novella will release at the beginning of December), will be on sale Wednesday, July 12th. You know what that means — time for a little teaser!

***

It wasn’t the first time someone had shot at him, but never before had it been in such close quarters. The shot rang in his ears. Indeed, the sound of the gun’s blast was so intense that a few seconds had passed before he became aware of the sharp pain in his left arm. He looked down and saw blood welling up through the silk of his robe, and staggered backward a pace, away from the door.

That seemed to be the only encouragement the young woman needed, because she immediately bolted through the now open doorway and headed for the stairs. Grimacing, he tore away the sleeve of his robe so he might see the damage she’d inflicted. The bullet had gone through his bicep without hitting the bone, and so he knew he’d heal quickly — probably far more quickly than the human would have liked. Even as he glared down at the wound, the flow of blood started to slow, and the hole began to knit itself closed.

Good. He took the torn-off sleeve of his robe and knotted it around his arm, creating a makeshift bandage. Then he blinked himself down to the ground floor of the house, which he found empty, the front door standing open. The young woman’s backpack was gone.

So, too, were her jeans, and Hasan had to allow himself a brief moment of admiration for her resourcefulness, that she would pause to collect such a thing even while running at full speed. And yes, there she was, already halfway across the yard, her long ponytail bouncing against her back as she fled for the safety of the forest.

Not that its cover would provide her any real sanctuary. These were his lands, and he knew them intimately. He could transport himself wherever he needed to go in the blink of an eye.

And so he did, materializing directly in front of her when she was only a few yards away from the edge of the cottonwood thicket. She pulled up sharply, her movement so sudden that she stumbled, clearly thrown off balance by the heavy backpack she carried. Hasan took advantage of her disorientation to close on her and tear the gun from its holster, then fling it far away. She let out an incoherent cry and attempted to flee toward the weapon so she might reclaim it, but he reached out and tackled her, the two of them falling onto the short-cropped grass, with her caught beneath him even as the backpack slipped off her shoulders and fell to the ground.

He wouldn’t let himself think too much about the feel of her body beneath his, the way her breasts rubbed against his bare chest as she struggled in his grip. “Stop it,” he growled. “Do you really think you can escape me?”

For a moment she went still, her slender frame taut as a harp string. Then her eyes shut, and her jaw clenched. “Do it, then,” she whispered. “Get it over with.”

A second or two passed before Hasan realized what she was saying. She expected him to kill her.

 

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