I drove a lot of folks crazy with the insanely cruel cliffhanger at the end of Escaping Solitude. (Sorry.) The good news? It’s almost time for the release of book three, the BIG FINALE, of the Escape Trilogy.
Escaping Mortality will be available January 28 from NineStar Press. Read all about it. Then, check out the dark, sexy cover (because, yeah, this book gets pretty dark) PLUS an excerpt below.
About the book:
Their ocean journey was successful, and Andrew and Edmund found an Elder just in time. As they wished, Edmund is now a vampire like Andrew. They have eternity together, but first, they must visit Edmund’s ailing mother in the English countryside with their flock of immortals, including the Elder, who has taken an ominous liking to his new creation.
When they arrive at Edmund’s family estate, his sick mother and her loathsome best friend await them. While ducking religious curses, Edmund struggles to harness an unexpected power gifted him by the Elder. Andrew fears for his beloved as Edmund becomes more and more monstrous—but vampires have always been monsters, haven’t they?
A battle is coming, for Edmund’s heart and his soul, and Andrew will lose neither. He escaped island exile and a near tragedy at sea to be with Edmund, the beautiful young sailor he loves. Andrew will do anything to keep Edmund by his side, but his most dangerous adversary may be Edmund himself.
Now, the cover reveal!!! Thanks to Natasha Snow Designs for this amazing look!
As I said, this twisted, sexy BIG FINALE of the Escape Trilogy will be available January 28. It has been such an exciting journey with Andrew and Edmund (and with all of you, of course). I can’t wait to share the big finish. I hope you love it.
For now, add this to your Goodreads list >>
PS: The entire trilogy will be available in paperback this coming May. You’ll be able to hold this beauty in your hot little hands this summer. Signed copies will be available, too, and I promise to kiss every copy I send. Happy New Year!
Edmund tries desperately not to shiver, but he forgets himself every minute or so and allows a full body shake that vibrates the wet edges of his hair. We’re back on deck after our desperate leap into the ocean, my sailor and I. A half-hysterical Michelle wrapped us both in the heaviest fabric she could find, once we were both safely lifted back onboard with our new passenger: the Elder.
He sits across from Edmund at a large table in our ship’s common area while I stand and glare. Michelle and Felipe linger silently to my left and right.
This Elder is nothing more than a rotting skeleton, covered in loose, hanging flesh. He smells of dead fish and refuses to take his dark eyes off the man I love.
“You are dying,” the creature says, his voice like the swinging of a rusted gate.
Edmund chuckles. “Yes. So you understand why I need your help.”
“Why do you want this gift, dead man? Power? Prestige?”
The creature’s gaze momentarily swings up, and I stand straighter. For the first time since we escaped the rolling waves, the Elder addresses me: “How frustrating for a strong vampire such as yourself that you cannot save the one you adore.”
I’m about to respond when Edmund speaks first. “I would prefer to keep this conversation between the two of us, if you don’t mind. It is, after all, my life we discuss.”
The Elder studies Edmund and says nothing. For a long moment, he merely observes. Although the blanket covers Edmund’s black, infected flesh, it’s impossible to miss the green pallor of his skin, the purple circles around his eyes, and the color of his lips, now practically white. All signs of the healthy young man I first met are gone.
“You have no fear right now, dead man. Strange for one with so little time left. I tasted it underwater, your fear. Quite a strong bouquet.” A tongue like a slippery snail pokes out from the Elder’s mouth to lick cracked lips.
“You tried to pull me under.”
“You offered yourself.”
“I needed to get your attention.”
I’m not sure, but I think the Elder smiles. He shows his teeth anyway—long, pointed fangs bigger than any I’ve seen. “And now, you have it, dead man.”
“My name is Edmund. And you?”
Again, those eyes—so dark as to be almost black—glance at me. “Brien.” He growls the R. “If the world is still how I recall, Edmund, nothing is free. You woke me with your dying flesh because you need something.” He opens his hands before him, skin wrinkled, sharp fingernails like weapons. “What do I get from you?”
Edmund shivers and groans. When he bends over in pain and rests his forehead on the table, Michelle stops me from rushing forward. “What do you want?” Edmund asks.
As my darling struggles to find the strength to sit, Brien watches with interest—I assume. It’s difficult to tell with the sagging, wet flesh. Logic says the Elder should be dry by now, but he continues to drip foul water as though made of the stuff.
“You can have anything,” Edmund says.
Brien leans forward and sniffs, seeking Edmund’s scent. “I want to kill you.”
I step toward them. “No.”
The Elder stares at me. “No?”
“Edmund requested I do that.” I could say more about how I want to taste his soul, how I want that moment to belong to me and me alone. I want him in my arms the moment he takes his last breath. So many things do I want, and this monster of the sea would steal it all.
“Dead man?” Brien practically purrs.
“Damn it.” Edmund closes his eyes. “Fine. My life is yours.”
“It is better than the alternative, love,” Edmund mutters. “Is that all you require?”
“I will travel with you wherever you now go.”
“Michelle?” Edmund says her name but doesn’t turn. I don’t think he’s strong enough to move anymore.
My old friend—once enemy, now leader—steps forward in her sweeping skirts. “Of course, Elder Brien. We are at your service.”
“You might want to…” Edmund coughs. “Find something to wear. They frown upon naked corpses walking around London.”
Felipe laughs—one short burst of amusement.
“Do we have a deal?”
Brien lowers his head. “Yes, Edmund.” He looks up and shows his teeth. “Ah, there it is—the smell. Now, you are afraid.”
Edmund’s eyes are red. I don’t know if he cries from pain or from the thought of his own murder at the hands of a hideous monster. Perhaps he found comfort in the thought of me doing it because he knew I wouldn’t let him hurt. Brien appears liable to chop off each of Edmund’s fingers before letting him die—but I will not let that happen. I will be at his side. I will hold Edmund’s hand as his heart stops beating. Thinking of this, my own chest begins to ache.