Dark MoonI’m thrilled to be invited to participate in my 2nd Book Brew monthly theme, especially as this month’s theme, Urban Fantasy/Paranormal, is right up my alley. My recent release, Dark Moon, is the first book in the Witch-Were Chronicles and is a book firmly situated in modern times but using ancient myths and legends of Werewolves and Witches, Shapeshifters and Wiccans, but with my own twist where I’ve incorporated ancient magical pacts and curses to boot.

I’ve chosen an excerpt from Dark Moon where my heroine, Skye’s, magic is shown for the first time. She has been hiding from her magic for years, binding with a spell to stop it from coming out, and so its appearance here is somewhat of a shock.

Excerpt from Dark Moon:

‘Let me help.’ Shelley knelt in front of Skye and slowly edged the boot off her foot. Her ankle throbbed, and not the usual throb of relief after having been strapped into a tight boot all day. She bit her lip as she stood, careful to keep her weight balanced on her other foot as she took off her jacket, hat and gloves, and hung them up. She went to grab her boots, but Shelley had already put them on the boot rack. ‘You don’t have to baby me,’ she said again.

‘And you don’t have to take your anger at Morrigan out on me.’

Skye grimaced an apology. ‘I’m sorry. She just makes me so angry.’ She clenched her hands at her sides, a hot ball tightening in her chest, her fingers tingling. ‘I mean, why does she persist in treating me like a child?’ She hobbled out of the drying room and down the stairs, Shelley following close behind. ‘No. Worse. Like I am nothing more than a possession.’

‘I’m sure she doesn’t think that.’

Skye laughed bitterly. ‘You don’t know Morrigan. It’s easy to get charmed by her and miss the fact she can be a right royal bitch.’

Skye shoved the key in the lock of their bunk room door and pushed it open. She hobbled through, angry that her ankle was so sore, because she sure felt like kicking something. ‘I mean, why have me followed? It’s like she doesn’t think I can be trusted. She makes me so mad.’ Her fingers were burning but she ignored the sensation, too caught up in trying to find a way to explain how her grandmother made her feel.

‘Um, Skye.’

‘I don’t know why she bothers. I mean, she hates me. She always has. Thankfully, she cares about River, but me …’ She shook her head. ‘I’m like the dirt she scrapes off her boots in winter – annoying and easily discarded. Yet, even though she hates me, she won’t keep her perfect nose out of my life. Always there. Always harping about my wrong decisions and the fact I should do so much better than I am.’ She wanted to pace, but could only manage a pathetic sort of limping hop, which made her temper spike higher. The burn in her fingers got hotter, but that didn’t matter. All that mattered was the flame of anger in her mind, cauterising her heart at the thought of how little her grandmother truly cared for her. ‘I’m so frustrated and hurt and angry – I feel like I’m going to explode.’

‘Skye. You need to calm down,’ Shelley said forcefully. ‘You need to calm down now.’

‘I don’t want to calm down. I want to go back home and ask Morrigan who the hell she thinks she is. I want her to look at me. To really look at me and—’ Skye turned and for the first time registered the look on Shelley’s face – fear and awe. She glanced down to see what Shelley was staring at.

There was blue flame on her fingertips.

‘No! No, no, no, no, no.’ Fear gripped her throat, cutting off the words tumbling out of her mouth. She hadn’t seen that blue flame erupt from her hands since the night she hurt River when they were ten.

No. This couldn’t happen.

‘How are you doing that?’ Shelley took a step toward her.

‘No! Stay away. I can’t control it. I might hurt you.’ The flame flickered with her words and she flinched, but there was no escaping it. The flame was attached to her, coming from her.

‘Skye? Are you okay? Does it hurt?’

She shook her head, trying to think past her horror. ‘It never hurts me. But I don’t understand. The spell is supposed to stop my power from erupting. I shouldn’t be able to create the flame. I don’t even know how to. How do I make it go away?’ She looked up, hopeful, but Shelley just shook her head.

‘I don’t know. I’ve never seen anything like it before.’

‘Oh God! Oh God.’ She looked at the sink and dived for it. Maybe water would help to put it out. She had to get rid of it. She had to get rid of it now.

The flame flickered and then went out as she reached for the tap.

She grasped the edge of the sink, shaking. Darkness edged her vision. For a brief second, she wondered if she might pass out. But the darkness ebbed and she saw her pale, frightened face in the mirror.

How could that have happened?

It couldn’t. There was no way she’d just made flame spark from her hands. It was impossible. She must be dreaming. She glanced at Shelley’s reflection. Her friend stared at her with an expression that told Skye it was no dream.

Skye closed her eyes. She didn’t want to see that stunned look on her friend’s face turn to fear. ‘I’m sorry I frightened you. I didn’t mean—’

‘You didn’t frighten me.’

She didn’t sound frightened. Skye opened her eyes. ‘Are you sure?’

‘Yes. I was just concerned you wouldn’t know how to control it, because you’ve always been so anti-magic. When did you decide to tap into it?’

‘I didn’t.’

‘Then – how?’

Skye frowned. ‘I don’t know.’ She looked down at her hands again. They were normal; nothing special. Just pale skin with a scattering of freckles across the back, a scar on her pinkie finger and a few chewed-down nails.

 

Dark MoonDark Moon Blurb:

Lately, Skye Collins has been unable to shake the feeling that she’s being watched. After a lifetime spent hiding her true nature, she knows that any unusual attention is something to be wary of.  And the only attention she’s been receiving lately is from the intense and attractive Jason McVale.

Jason claims to know things about Skye that can’t be true, and it’s obvious he’s hiding secrets of his own. Yet despite herself, Skye can’t resist the attraction between them, and her surrender will set in motion a chain of events that will have consequences for everyone she holds dear.

Gradually, Jason convinces Skye that she has to trust him if she is to solve the riddle of her past and learn the truth about her power.  But believing Jason means that her entire life has been based on a lie.

As her enemies gather strength and the danger increases, Skye is forced to accept who she really is. Will she risk everything and fight for those she loves? Or save herself and let them be destroyed by the forces of darkness?

Leisl Headshot tweetAbout the Author.

Leisl is a tall red head with an overly large imagination. As a child, she identified strongly with Anne of Green Gables. A voracious reader and a born performer, it came as no surprise to anyone when she did a double major in English Literature and Drama for her BA, then went on to a career as an actor, singer and dancer, as well as script writer, stage manager and musical director for cabaret and theatre restaurants (one of which she co-owned and ran for six years).

After starting a family Leisl stopped performing and instead, began writing the stories that had been plaguing her dreams. Leisl’s stories have won and placed in many competitions in Australia and the US, including the STALI, Golden Opportunities, Heart of the West, Linda Howard Award of Excellence, Touch of Magic and many others.

Leisl lives in the leafy suburbs of Melbourne with her two beautiful boys, lovely hubby, overly spunky dog, Buffy, and likes to spend time with family and friends. She sometimes sings in a choir and works as a swim teacher in her day-to-day job.

Leisl writes paranormal fantasy and romantic suspense.

You can buy Dark Moon here:

Amazon

Kobo

Destiny Romance

iBooks

Google Play

Killing Me Softly Cover2And Killing Me Softly here:

Amazon

Kobo

iBooks

Destiny Romance

Google Play

You can follow Leisl and find out more about her and her books on her website: www.leislleighton.com

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Follow her on Twitter @LeislLeighton

 

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