Today I'd like to introduce you to the Talgorians. I recently released a short story prequel in addition to the full length novel in this series and I have plans to write four more books.
Today I'm giving away a one copy of both Talgorian Prophecy and Talgorian Dragon to one person who comments.
Short Story Purchase Here
In the war between the Monocaths and Talgorians, Drakar Holkinverg lost the love of his life to death. For two years he’s withdraw from his people, living as an outcast. When a Guardian senses Gwyn’s life force, Drakar immediately tracks her. Is it possible that she survived the one way that an immortal Talgorian could be killed? Once reunited, Drakar discovers they are both pawns in the Monocaths’ plan to destroy all Talgorians. Drakar will do anything to save Gwyn and his people from this fate. When the stakes are highest, will Gwyn find the courage to accept her heritage to protect their people or have two years with the Monocaths changed her?
Drakar Holkinverg sniffed the damp night air, tracking the faint aroma that led him farther into the city and away from his sanctuary in the nearby mountains. Snowflakes floated toward the hard ground, and ice crunched beneath his heavy boots. The city lights grew closer as he followed the scent that drew him, called to him, only stopping now and again to inhale, ensuring he was on the right path.
She was near. The light floral fragrance, like roses after a summer rain, filled his senses, deepening in its bouquet with each step. A tinge of fear and desperation clouded the scent.
Drakar paused high upon a hill at the edge of the forest. Down below, the Magdoli Bridge crossed over the slow moving Cantar River near the outskirts of Karsburg. The town was alive with celebration. Even from this distance, he could hear the thunder of premature fireworks and the shrill squeal of noisemakers. The townspeople’s laughter and loud voices drifted through the night as they celebrated the coming New Year.
A new year…a new life.
He listened intently, focusing on one small sound, until the noise of the city faded away and the rhythm of her heartbeat pulsed through him. He felt it as his own, its quick tempo pounding in an adrenaline rush. He scanned the area until he saw her.
Love surged through him at the sight of her. She’d always held an immense power over him.
She stood alone at the highest point of the bridge in the shadows of dim streetlights, clutching the railing while leaning over the edge, staring into the icy water of the Cantar River. She swayed from side to side, lifted her face to the sky, then looked back into the river. Her energy enveloped him, thrusting forward a desire he thought he’d never feel again.
It had been too long.
Her short black hair, straight and cropped at one length just below her ears, fell forward blocking her face, yet he knew every line, every angle. Wet from the falling snow, her hair glistened a blue black in the glow of the streetlights. A short coat covered the slim body that he knew was underneath. She leaned over the rail.
She was going to jump.
Not on my watch.
Shifting the energy fields around him, he moved to her side in an instant, leaned over the rail, and followed her gaze into the dark depths of the Cantar. “You don’t have to do this.”
She spun toward him, fists drawn.” Get away from me.”
“You don’t have to do this, Gwyn.”
“You’re not taking me back,” she yelled, running a few yards away from him. She threw her foot over the rail and climbed. “I won’t go back!”
Drakar grabbed her waist and pulled her off the railing. She kicked and punched at him.
“Stop, Gwyn! I’m not taking you back. Don’t you recognize me?”
She pushed against him, still struggling to break free, her eyebrows furrowed. Anger radiated from her.
Of course she didn’t recognize him. He’d grown a beard and wore his hair long. You could barely see the tattoo across his forehead and cheek that marked him as Talgorian. He no longer wore the fine robes of an aristocrat but now donned the heavy clothing of a huntsman. He didn’t look anything like the pale, skinny youth he’d been when they fought the Monocaths together. He’d seen her die that day. Her life force had faded as the arrow pierced her heart. Devastated he’d lived in a self-imposed isolation for the past two years, lost in grief after her death. Wandering from place to place, living off the land, had changed him into a powerful warrior.
Drakar’s heart went out to her even as anger coiled in his gut. He would destroy the Monocaths for making her suffer, for driving her to this point.
“I don’t know you.” She pushed harder against his chest, increasing the distance between them. “Let go of me.”
“Are you sure about that?” He pulled her closer.
“I would remember you.” She stared up at him, her body stiff and stretched as far away from him as she could get within the circle of his arms.
“I’ve changed.” He ran his fingertips along her temple to calm her, losing himself in the depth of her dark eyes. “Let me refresh your memory.”
He crushed his lips against her mouth. She hit his shoulders, struggled to break free but suddenly stilled and parted her lips, allowing him entry. He gripped the back of her neck, deepening the kiss, tasting the sweet elixir of his future mate. Her body melted against him.
Drakar broke the kiss. “Spark any memories?”
Talgorian Prophecy was previously published by Cerridwen Press and during that time it received the following awards: Winner: Speculative Fiction Romance in the 2008 Dream Realm Awards and Finalist in the 2009 Colorado Romance Writers Award of Excellence. The book is now available again with a new cover!
Megan Cassidy, a world-renowned psychic seer, must fight a serial killer to save her six-year-old son Robbie. But she can’t do it alone. She needs help from the best tracker and Ranger in West Virginia, her ex-fiancé, Brody Phelps.
In a psychic vision, Megan sees her own death during a battle with the murderer that the police have dubbed The Mountain Mangler. She soon discovers that the Mangler is also psychic and looking for a challenge that the first six victims couldn’t meet.
While Brody and Megan search the mountains for the Mangler and Robbie, Megan is drawn to Talgor Ridge where they are told an unbelievable story from a Talgorian Elder. When they discover their destinies are intertwined with the immortal Talgorians, Brody and Megan must each follow their hearts to fulfill the first Talgorian Prophecy. Acceptance is the only way to save Robbie, and the Talgorians, from total destruction.
What the reviewer's say:
4 Stars – Dupre’s well-plotted and exciting novel grabs the reader. At its center is a wonderful story about lovers reconnecting. This is surrounded by a suspenseful paranormal adventure with several twists that will continually surprise. ~ Romantic Times
5 Cups – Without missing a beat the author takes you from a normal hunt into a spectacular paranormal world where you learn the key to what is happening. This is one of those stories that at the end the reader feeling like they had just run a marathon. To sum all of it up would be to say one phenomenal read. ~ Wateena, Coffee Time Romance
5 Stars – Talgorian Prophecy is filled with suspense, love, and fantasy. The plot will keep readers on the edge of their seat. The emotions in this story run deep, I was wiping tears several times before I finished reading Talgorian Prophecy. The characters are well-defined. Megan is a strong character willing to fight to the death for her child. Brody is a wonderful character, although at times I wanted to yell at him for his stubbornness. Fans of suspense, romance and fantasy will love this one. ~ Ann Boling, ReviewYourBook.com
When this trailer was made, Talgorian Prophecy was published by Cerridwen Press, therefore the book cover at the end of the trailer is the old cover. I haven't been able to remake the video yet.
“Okay, Megan,” Brody nodded toward the lounge area, “sit down and tell me why you’re here.”
She entered the room. An overstuffed brown couch with two matching chairs, a plank coffee table and end tables added a sense of coziness to the police station. She sat on the couch clutching the purse against her abdomen.
What was Brody thinking? Had he wondered about Robbie’s father? Or what her life was like now? Maybe he felt indifferent about seeing her again. She took a deep breath to calm her nerves.
Brody lowered all six foot two inches of his toned physique into a chair. She let her gaze move over his broad chest and down strong arms as the shirtsleeves tightened around muscles bunching beneath the fabric. A utility belt holding a two-way radio and other items clung to his narrow waist. Man, he sure fills out that ranger uniform.
Her heartbeat increased watching him settle into the chair. She fought the urge to go to him, bury her head against his neck and let him comfort her. It was all she could do to keep her seat. She wanted to lean on him, to feel his strength protecting her. She hadn’t realized seeing him again would be this difficult.
Years ago he had wanted her love and she’d willingly given it. She remembered the time he’d playfully tickled her at the community barbecue, chasing her into the forest until they’d both tumbled onto the grass and into each other’s arms. The day he’d asked her to marry him had been the happiest of her life, a joy eclipsed only by Robbie’s birth. Brody had been her most trusted confidant until that fateful morning when the accident ripped their world apart.
She’d tried to get over Brody by dating other men but none had compared. She’d even convinced herself she didn’t need a man in her life and Robbie’s love was enough. Now she realized she’d only kidded herself. A love like theirs was rare. For a moment she allowed herself to wish for love again.
Brody watched her.
Instead of the baby-faced teenager who caused her to spin out of control, the man staring at her with such intensity was a stranger. His features were more sculpted and laugh lines creased the outer corners of his eyes. She knew she’d never be able to deny her feelings, even after all this time or the pain she’d experienced when he’d broken her heart. How much had he changed after his parents’ deaths?
She searched for any softness in his eyes, an unclenching of his jaw, anything to indicate he’d forgiven her.
She saw nothing to offer even a shred of hope.
Not that she’d expected forgiveness.
“I’m waiting, Megan.”
She stared at Brody and twisted the purse strap. “It started eight months ago. A girl was kidnapped and two weeks later her mother was taken. They found both of them murdered in the Allegheny Mountains about twenty miles north of Clarkston. Two months later, a man and his teenage son disappeared. When, again two months later, a woman and her daughter were abducted, the Clarkston police realized they had a serial killer on their hands. They called in the State Police but neither department is saying much. The victims are always a parent and child, with the parent having some type of psychic ability and the killer cuts an X across their chest and decapitates them.”
“The Mountain Mangler?” Brody crossed his arms over his chest.
“You have heard of him?”
“Archer wanted me on the search and rescue team with this case but you know that don’t you? You came back to Flatrock Creek to see me because…”
“Yeah, I knew Archer wanted you on the team.” She rubbed her face with her hands. “Brody, you’re the best Forest Ranger in West Virginia and a trained police officer. You’ve been tracking these mountains your whole life. You know this area better than anyone and have proven it by finding eight missing people. If anyone can find Robbie, it’s you.”
“Have you been keeping tabs on me, Megan?” His eyes narrowed and the muscles in his jaw twitched.
Megan jerked her gaze from him. Heat rose into her cheeks under his scrutiny. She couldn’t admit that was exactly what she’d done. “I saw you on television when you found the Anderson boy in the Allegheny’s.”
She met his stare but his expression remained cold. “You were quite a hero.”
“This is out of my jurisdiction.”
“Not as a ranger.”
“What does Robbie’s father say about your coming to me?”
“I’m not married so there isn’t anyone else to consider. Please help me.”
Brody stood and paced over to the desk.
Megan waited. She knew better than to pressure him. And because this concerned her, it wouldn’t be anything less than monumental for him to agree.
He turned to face her. Indecision and something else flitted in his eyes. Images from their youth flashed through her mind, the accident, his anger.
Crap. I’m reading him. Megan tried to break the connection by imagining a brick wall between them. It didn’t work. She looked away and thought of the serial killer taking Robbie. Anger took over and broke her psychic link to Brody.
“I’m sorry, Megan.” He frowned. “I’m going out of town tomorrow. I can give you the names of other rangers who are good trackers. I hope you find your son.”
“What? You must be kidding!” She wouldn’t settle for a ranger who wasn’t a natural tracker and didn’t have the intuitive ability, instincts and dogged determination that Brody had. “This is unacceptable. Couldn’t you cancel your trip?” Megan rubbed her temple. “You still resent me, don’t you? I did not kill your parents.”
“I don’t want to talk about it.”
“No.” Megan stood. “We will talk about it.”
She moved to stand in front of him, in case he decided to walk out on her—again. “My son’s life is in danger. He may die. What about your promise to Arial? When she was murdered you swore you’d always find a way to help a child in danger.”
“There’s too much in our past. You’ll be better off with someone who doesn’t have our history.”
“I don’t want any other ranger. I want you. You’re the best. You’ve got an instinct about this sort of thing—intuitiveness—even if you don’t agree. Please, Brody. I haven’t bothered you in all these years. The one time I ask for your professional expertise, not for myself but for my child—how can you refuse?”
“Because I have other commitments. I can recommend Ranger Thompson in Calgory. He’s an excellent tracker.” Brody reached for a pen and wrote something on a notepad. He ripped the page from the pad and held it out to her. “Here’s his number. Tell him I referred you.” He tossed the pen on the desk.
Dark brooding eyes bore into her. “Dammit Brody, Robbie needs you.” Her anger swelled.
Brody turned away. When Detective Archer asked him to work this case it had been a hard decision to choose his cousin’s wedding over work. He’d let her complaints influence him.
Now Megan needed him.
He wanted to be there for her, he really did but the risk to his heart was too great. Megan had torn his world apart once. He couldn’t let history repeat itself. Not now, not ever again. “You only want to use me for my tracking skills just like everyone else. You only came to me because I know these mountains. You said so yourself.”
Tracking was his job and he loved it. He didn’t mind being used for work but with Megan it was different. He’d always hoped if he ever saw her again it wouldn’t be work related.
“Brody, there’s something—”
He threw up his hands. “I don’t want to know, Megan. Whatever it is, it won’t influence my decision. For once, why don’t you accept you’ve made a mistake?”
“A mistake?” Megan stared into his eyes as she stepped toward him. So these were his true feelings. “I’m not too proud to admit when I’m wrong. But there’s not a psychic on this planet who is right one hundred percent of the time.”
For a moment he watched her. Megan hoped he was reconsidering his decision. Maybe he’d change his mind and search for Robbie.
“I know you’re under a lot of stress. I’m not going to put myself in a position to be hurt by your visions again.” He took her hand and pressed the piece of paper with the phone number into her palm.
“I’m sorry.”"I don’t want your sympathy, Brody.” Megan backed toward the door, crushing the paper in her fist. “You told me how you felt seven years ago. I should have believed you. I don’t know why I ever thought you would feel differently now. I’ll handle this situation like every other one in my life—alone.”
Megan jerked the front door open and slammed it behind her. She ran down the steps, fumbling with her keys. They slipped through her fingers, clattering onto the sidewalk. She scooped them up but dropped them again.
Anger boiled in her stomach, mixing with the ever-present fear. Tears clouded her vision. She snatched up the keys. Her heart beat so furiously she thought a heart attack was imminent. She paused to take a deep breath while visualizing her heartbeat decreasing. Once the rapid pounding and her breathing slowed, she continued down the porch.
And stopped dead in her tracks a few feet away from the car.
Her gaze narrowed on the child-sized, blue baseball cap lying on the Mustang’s dashboard. The letters NY were stitched above the brim.
Oh God! Panic tore at her, catching her breath and shattering her. She ran to the driver’s side door and leaned into the car for a better look.Robbie, in capital letters, was embroidered in white above the adjustable clasp.
The killer’s here!
“Give me my son!” Megan screamed and spun around, looking for him. “Damn it, show yourself, coward! Give Robbie back to me!”
Fear rose along her spine. The Mangler had followed her to Flatrock Creek! It was too soon. This meant his MO had changed. He wasn’t waiting to come after her, which meant he could have already harmed Robbie.
Megan halted her frantic circling. Only a few feet separated the station from the trees. The Mangler must have disappeared into the forest.
She willed herself to slip into a semitrance and tapped into the psychic part of herself. She stood immobile, allowing her physical vision to go out of focus as she searched the woods behind the buildings across the street psychically, setting her mind free. In her third eye she moved quickly through the trees, watching them speed by in a colorful blur in her peripheral vision while she focused on the clear view directly in front of her. She searched everywhere for any trace of the killer’s darkness or the sight of him fleeing through the forest.
She dropped the invisible wall she kept around her own emotions, making her vulnerable to others’ feelings. She tried to connect with the killer’s emotions. Apprehension and uncertainty immediately enveloped her, jerking her back into the ranger station and Brody. She imagined a wall around him to keep his emotions at bay. She’d deal with him later.Megan traveled back into the forest, searching for any other negative emotions that might belong to the killer. If he were nearby, she’d be able to sense him.
Nothing! She turned and performed the same search in the forest behind the station. Projecting her mind forward again, she found an eagle feasting on a kill in a clearing, while a rabbit hid beneath a nearby bush—he’d narrowly escaped being the bird’s breakfast. A little farther away, a large black and gold iguana peered at her from the top of a boulder. Her mind sped past the animals but the feeling of being watched caused her to backtrack in her mind’s eye to the iguana’s rock. The odd-colored reptile had disappeared. How did an iguana get out of its natural tropical habitat and into the Allegheny Mountains anyway? It probably escaped from the pet owner’s cage. Megan scanned past the rock and further into the forest.
Megan’s frustration melded with fear in her mind. How had the killer disappeared without a trace? At every turn she hit a dead end. It was as if he’d somehow blocked her psychic attempts to find him. She’d sensed this before, from other psychics. She did it herself to keep other psychics from reading her. If the Mangler could block her that meant…
The mental connection severed. She slipped from the semitrance to full consciousness. Refocusing her vision she examined the cap.
She fought the deep knowing filled with unthinkable possibilities. Was the killer psychic too? Moisture beaded her forehead, her body started to shake. The taste of bile filled her mouth, her stomach pitched and rolled. She pushed the feelings back down. She wouldn’t throw up.
Megan slid down the side of the car and collapsed on the gravel beside the wheel. She covered her face with her hand. It was wet from tears. When did I cry?
The weight of the past hours—worrying about Robbie, arguing with the police and facing Brody had been tough. The Mangler had followed her, changing his MO. The possibility of a psychic killer—it was overwhelming. She grabbed her knees. She couldn’t take any more. What had she done to deserve such a horrible fate? Pain and loss took control of her emotions. Tears poured down her face. She couldn’t hold back anymore.
“My baby, my poor baby,” she cried, rocking her body like she rocked him to sleep. “Someone, please, anyone! Help me find my son!”
~~~~~~~~~~ End Excerpt ~~~~~~~~
I hope you've enjoyed meeting the Talgorian's today. Visit me at http://MelissaA.com for updates on my books and more!
writing as Ariana Dupre