It’s almost here! The Castle of Fire and Fable – book 2 in the Briarwood Reverse Harem series is hitting virtual bookshelves on May 3rd. (And of course, if you haven’t read book 1 – The Castle of Earth and Embers – you can remedy that right meow).
Here’s a wee excerpt to get you excited.
The sidhe. Of course. I’d been so busy with Jane and Connor and the police and Flynn’s damn piling system that I had forgotten we still hadn’t found a way to stop the fae entering our realm. The message that the coven were still alive and that Blake had joined us must have reached Daigh by now. Several fae were likely already in our realm, getting ready to attack us, or worse – hurt more innocent people.
“Can we—” Exhaustion tugged at my eyelids. I swayed on my feet. I thought of my soft bed up in my tower bedroom, the sheets pulled up tight around my body, cocooning me inside its heavenly warmth.
But no sleep for the wicked witches. Or indeed, the good witches. We clearly had some spellcasting to do. I remembered what Daigh had said to me; We have a weapon the likes of which you cannot even imagine. The Slaugh. Would they try to raise them tonight? Could they? If we could stop this from happening, we had to try.
“How did you figure out the spell so quickly?” Corbin demanded, casting a suspicious look at Blake.
“It’s not the same spell. Briarwood is surrounded by some powerful wards – unpicking that magic is going to take a lot more effort,” Blake explained. “For now, we just need to hold back the tide – I’ve already seen two Far Darrigs and three green guards come through tonight. I’ve managed to cobble together a simpler version of the wards that protect Briarwood. It won’t hold them forever, but it’s a start.”
“But how did you find—” Corbin started, but Blake was already pushing past him.
“No time to explain. Hop to it, witches!”
“If fae are out there, we need weapons.” Arthur ducked inside, returning a moment later with his beloved sword and scabbard, a second sword – which he passed to me (with a look of trepidation on his face) – and several daggers he tossed to the others. I noticed that Rowan didn’t take one. I patted the pocket in my skirt, where the four objects the guys had given me were – a medallion from Flynn, a small dagger from Arthur, a twig of rowan from Rowan, and a charm written out on parchment from Corbin. I hoped like hell they’d be enough to keep us safe.
I followed Blake and Flynn across the formal garden, down the hill – leaping and skidding over rough dirt and irregular stone steps – through the tiny wood, where the temperature cooled under the gloom of the trees, standing the hairs on my arms on end. We emerged near the stone wall Flynn and I hid behind when we’d first encountered Blake.
“Look, Princess,” Blake pointed, his grin wicked. “It’s where we first met. Isn’t this romantic? We should have brought a picnic.”
“I was just starting to like you and you had to go and mention that particular incident,” Flynn said, swinging his legs over the low wall, candles and spell books flying from his arms. “My face has only just returned to its usual handsome state. What did you do to me, anyway?”
“I was trying to give you a message for Maeve, to warn her about the king. At that stage, I didn’t know she was so close I could’ve just told her myself.”
“Well, stay out of my head from now on.” Flynn stepped over the wall. I noticed that in addition to the candles and other objects in his arms, he struggled with the enormous Briarwood grimoire. “Next time you want to know something, just ask me.”
“If it makes you feel better, I am sorry. But any amount of pain was worth it to get us to the point where we could fight Daigh.”
“It’s easy to say that when you’re not the one in pain,” Flynn grumbled.
“If we—” Blake started over the wall, but he didn’t get to finish his sentence.
An arrow flew past his face, embedding itself into the hill behind us. Another arrow made a thwack sound as it plunged into the earth. My stomach lurched to my knees.
“We’re under attack!”
Want to find out what happens? It’s easy – you just have to pick up a copy of The Castle of Fire and Fable.