Here’s more about this forbidden romance between a powerful angel warrior and one very sassy wicked demoness, including an excerpt for you to sink those teeth into!
“My name is Asteria.”
It was his turn to arch an eyebrow. “After the Greek titan?”
She nodded and beamed until he shook his head and sighed.
“A demon does not deserve the name of a mortal goddess of old.”
Her face blackened, her hand dropped to her side, and her pupils turned elliptical in the centre of her now-black irises and blazed gold fire at him.
“Tell that to my parents, whoever the fuck they were.”
He had hit a sore spot, and for some reason it left him reeling, feeling something for her that wasn’t disgust or hatred.
While he didn’t remember his family, he had learned of them from those who had known them, and he felt that he’d had a family. It seemed that Asteria hadn’t and it made him think about how he would feel if that was the case for him, and he found himself balancing on the verge of doing something ridiculous.
Angels did not apologise to demons.
He looked down on her, his head held high, seeing her for what she was. A demon. Just because she was female, it didn’t mean she was any different from the countless other demons he had met and eradicated. None of those had given him the impression that they cared about others. This was probably another ploy to get under his skin but it wouldn’t work.
She was a demon. She did not care that she had never known her family. It was a lie.
Even when part of him knew it was the truth and the hurt in her voice had been real.
He turned away from her, striding down the alley back towards the main road of the witches’ district. She was still a moment, drifting into the distance, but then she started following him again. He wanted to bellow to the heavens. Instead he prayed for patience, enough to stop himself from cutting her down. His right hand twitched.
He shoved it in his pocket.
She caught up with him a few metres along the main street, dancing between the various fae and witches as they came and went. When she twirled in front of him, her tartan pleated skirt swirled upwards and outwards, flashing black lace-edged panties at him.
He gritted his teeth, pinned his gaze straight ahead and did his best to ignore her.
It became impossible when she bounced ahead of him, her fall of straight onyx hair jumping with each step. The gold-to-red stripe down the right side of her hair came into view as she looked over her shoulder at him and smiled saucily. Her short fangs snagged her red lower lip, teased it in a way that made him feel she was trying to tease him too.
He shook his head and ignored her attempts to taunt him, and fixed his gaze over her head. It was difficult when she stood over six foot, taller than many of the males who were ogling her as she passed. Some eyed her black horns where they protruded from her hair but most were staring at her breasts or thighs.
Personally, he found his eyes drawn to her stiletto boots and his mind drawn to pondering how she managed to bounce along the cobbled road in them without landing a foot wrong and ending up on her backside. They looked impossible to walk in, let alone bounce or run, the black spikes of her heels at least four inches in length.
She twirled to face him, her red lips curved in another wicked smile. “You’re staring again, Rey.”
He rolled his eyes and sighed.
“Wondering how my boots would feel with the heels pressing into your bare arse as you pound into me?”
His right hand twitched in his jeans. Of course she noticed it.
He glared at her and dared her to say something.
She stopped and swayed her hips, bit her fingertip and fluttered her long black eyelashes. “Your eyes are going gold… are you going to get your big sword out and punish me?”
She flashed a saucy wink at him.
He just stared at her, unsure what to make of her and how she made him feel.
His eyes were going golden. He could feel the change as something inside him rose and grew, something he wasn’t entirely sure was anger.
She sidled closer and whatever spell she had cast on him shattered. He rose to his full height and glared down at her, clenched his fists at his sides and was sorely tempted to unleash his wings, knowing the sight of them would scare some sense into her.
In this world, he was stronger than she was, and she was playing with fire. The heavenly sort that could burn her to ashes with only a touch.
It was time she knew that.
Before he could send the call to his white wings and unfurl them, her skin paled and the amusement fled her eyes, and she backed away from him. She muttered things beneath her breath, words that drove burning needles into his mind and had him teetering on the edge of lashing out at her as he fought the pain. The demon tongue.
No angel could hear it without experiencing agony and an uncontrollable need to destroy whoever spoke it, regardless of whether or not they were a demon.
She seemed to sense his rising hunger to end her, because she stopped and stared at him, a wary edge to her blue eyes.
He pulled down a deep breath, exhaled it slowly and centred himself, driving out his need to dispense justice and focusing back on his mission as the pain subsided.
He gave her one last hard look he hoped would convince her to leave him alone now and strode past her.
“Do you not possess common sense, Demon?” he snapped as she came up beside him, all trace of fear gone from her face and her colour back again.
She was close to him, near enough that her darkness should have been crawling over his skin, but as he looked at her, he felt only a trickle of it, a dull sensation that she was the dark to his light. His enemy.
He thought back to when she had come out of the alley, crossing paths with him again, and realised that the darkness she emitted had been weaker then too. She felt different now. Or he did. The darkness she exuded bothered him less, barely registered to his mark that was calm against his wrist, not a trace of a burn in it.
Because she had been out of Hell for longer, her strength and demonic powers fading as she spent time away from her natural habitat, or because he was growing used to her presence?
He feared it was the latter, and that set him on guard and had him edging away from her.
“I said my name was Asteria, and I have common sense by the boat load, Rey. You just happen to be heading in the same direction as me.” She looked ready to poke her tongue out at him.
If she did, he might cut it off. She would grow it back but it would keep her mercifully quiet while that happened.
Instead of maiming her, he decided to join in her game and play her to see what information he could get out of her.
“And what direction would that be, Asteria?” It seemed odd saying her name. The name of a demon. He couldn’t recall ever doing such a thing before. Demons were demons. They were not worthy of him knowing their name, or their history, or anything about them, and he had never been interested in such things either.
As Asteria bounced ahead of him, drawing the gazes of far too many males, he realised he was curious about her and had been from the moment he had set eyes on her.
“To the Rozengard coven, Silly.” She pointed towards the five-storey brown and white building at the far end of the cavern wedged between the black tavern and the cream one belonging to the makeshift cat pride.
He sincerely hoped she hadn’t changed his name to Silly.
He frowned at that. He did not possess a name. He possessed a rank, the position as Fifth Commander of the Echelon. He did not need a name. His rank was a greater honour than any name could ever be.
Yet he still found himself hoping she wasn’t about to begin calling him Silly all the time.
He stared over her head at the coven building. She had been heading in the same direction as him after all.
“Leave,” he said, not wanting her to interfere in his mission.
Asteria turned to face him, skipped backwards along the street, and smiled in a way he didn’t like, one that said he was about to be given a reason to keep her with him, at least for a little longer.
“I guarantee I can get information out of our lead.”
He huffed at that.
He was damned if he was going to work with a demon. He paused and considered that. She did have a lead, and she did seem confident about being able to extract information from said lead. He didn’t trust her though. She was a demon. Her means of getting the information she spoke of were probably nefarious. Such as torture.
“I decline. You may leave.” He waved his hand through the air, shooing her away, which only seemed to infuriate her.
She blocked his path, shoved her hands against her hips, and scowled at him.
“I decline.” She mocked him. Little wench. He glared down at her but she didn’t relent. She stepped closer, tipped her chin up in a mulish way, and glared right back at him. “It was my lead first and you probably only know about it because you snooped on me. I know you listened in on my conversation back at Fort William. You stole my intel.”
He folded his arms across his chest, his eyebrows pinching hard as he set his jaw. “I did no such thing. I left before you received anything of value from those males you were luring with the offer of free sex. I presume you slept with them as payment?”
The thought that she had made his blood burn for some reason, but he justified it by telling himself it was because she was sinful, wicked, and he punished such crimes.
He merely wanted to punish her.
Asteria’s words echoed in his mind, a sultry tease about his big sword and punishing her with it.
He gritted his teeth and shoved her out of his head.
“I didn’t fuck them,” she snapped, loud enough that a few people paused to stare. “I’m not that sort of woman. Do you think all demons fit the stupid image Heaven has drilled into that thick skull of yours?”
He arched an eyebrow at her tone and the way her eyes were changing again, turning black as her pupils blazed gold and thinned into vertical slits. Her black horns even flared a little.
“And do you think all angels fit the image the Devil has drilled into your head?” he countered.
She responded by looking him up and down in a way that only made his blood burn hotter for some reason, especially when her eyes lingered on his hips and chest.
It became an inferno in his veins when she stepped up to him, tiptoed and whispered into his ear, “Your halo is a little bent.”
She turned and walked away before he could muster a retort, her words swimming in his head.
“What do you mean by that?” he barked after her.
She just raised her right hand above her shoulder and saluted him with her middle finger.
He bit out a low growl of frustration and went after her, trying to push what she had said out of his mind. She was messing with him. That was all.
So why couldn’t he stop pondering it?
His halo was bent?
Was she insinuating that he was a bit wicked like her?
He laughed at that. Far from it. He had never set a foot out of place, followed orders to the letter and was devoted to his duty.
He had never had a wicked thought in his life.
He could practically taste the lie in that as he stared at her, watching her walking away from him, her pert backside swaying side to side beneath that infernal pleated skirt that revealed more than it concealed, swishing back and forth to give him glimpses of lace-trimmed black panties.
Rey had the sinking feeling that the demoness was affecting him.
Dear lord, she was.
Because he had just called himself by the very name she had given him.
He clenched his fists and vowed that as soon as they had questioned the members of the Rozengard coven, they were going their separate ways and he would never see her again.
He was Fifth Commander of the Echelon.
An angel, one of the elite, an eradicator of demons.
She was one of those demons, a breed of creature he lived to hunt and destroy.
It was time he remembered that.