by Amy Miles & Danielle Bannister
(Book 2 of The Hallowed Realms Trilogy)
Ferrying the dead used to be my job. Kicking Lorcan arse was my duty. Now I’m stuck pretending to be a bloody Royal. Thanks to Prince Aed’s rash attempt to save my life, I’m forced to live under the Queen’s disapproving eye. I’m being whisked from one end of Netherworld to the other so Aed can court girls she deems more eligible than me. I am trying to accept my new role as Aed’s betrothed, but my rebellious heart refuses to leave Devlin in my past. As we draw nearer to the Wall separating my realm from the beasts of Hollow Earth, I can feel something is different. The Lorcan souls are changing and that scares the shite out of me. I’ll need Aed and his army by my side if we hope to win the war heading our way, but time will tell if that’s as a friend or his new bride.
As a mere human, I never thought I’d fall for a Banshee, but when I met Taryn as she came through the veil of the Netherworld, I was lost to her. Once I find her again, I’ll get her out of the womanizing hands of Prince Aed, get my best mate, Seamus, the help he needs, before those evil Lorcan beasts strike again. Taryn has warned me time and again about the dangers that lurk in her world and to stay away. I can’t do that. Not from her. Even if it means I have to walk into hell to find her.
HOLLOW EARTH (0.99 PRE-ORDER. Will be $3.99 after release)
RELEASE DAY SALE
For a limited time, books 1 & 2 will be on sale for .99 Cents each!
MEET THE MAIN CHARACTERS
There were only two things I knew for certain. The boat that had been carrying me to the Isle of Glass where Taryn said I’d spend the rest of my existence, now lived at the bottom of the sea. And two, I had no idea where the hell I was. The last thing the captain of my boat meant to ferry my soul to my final destination had said was to swim like I never had before. These awful looking things he called lorcan had overtaken the ship in a matter of minutes. He had said they were after the souls of those on board. One look at those hideous black beasts and my body was in the water, swimming for safety.
Those monsters were fierce. Twice my size, with scales, and decaying flesh. It was like an alligator crossed with a burned and decomposing body. The thought of them, even now, shook me to the core.
When you added my current reality of hiding in the woods with the fact that my memories of my time on Earth no longer existed, it equaled disaster. I had no past memories of my life before Taryn brought me through the veil. Only brief memories of my life since coming into Netherworld, and no knowledge of why any of this happened. Or how to fix it.
For several hours after I’d climbed out of the very same waters the lorcan attacked me in, I sat crouched in fear in the shrubs lining the forest. I didn’t dare run or make any noise in case the lorcan was still in the water. Thinking back on them made my blood turn to ice. I never wanted to see another one of them again. I waited and shivered as my drenched green velvet dress attempted to dry out in the shade of the trees.
With chattering teeth, I looked around, trying to figure out how to get help. Until I figured that out and, more importantly, how to make it to the Isle of Glass, I knew danger would lurk. Think, Alana. I gnawed on my lower lip as I considered my limited options. The only person I knew beyond the veil was Taryn. As a banshee here in Netherworld, she must have some idea of how to get me back and what happened. The only problem was I had no idea how to find her.
Surveying the lay of the land, I noted that on two sides lived woods. Behind me was the water I had fled from. There was no way I was stepping even a pinky toe back in that. Which only left the ominous looking wall that was off in the distance to my left. There was something about the sheer height of it that terrified me. Since it seemed to be my best shot at finding civilization, I had to try. Out here, alone in the woods, I was a sitting duck for the lorcan to find me again.
I shivered as I stood up slowly, making as little noise as possible. When the lorcan didn’t burst out of the water to kill me, I risked taking a few steps out from my hiding spot. Still nothing. Swallowing down my fear, I bolted for the fuller cover of the forest. My plan was to run until my lungs gave out, but I found I wasn’t tiring. It was the same as when I swam away from the boat. I guess it made sense. I was dead. I didn’t need to breathe, or eat, or sleep. I looked down at my fully formed body as I ran and wondered how my physical form could exist if there was nothing there to sustain it. Oh, this was all so confusing.
Sensing I wasn’t in immediate danger, I slowed my run to a walk to try to get my bearings. The vegetation all seemed normal looking. Trees like we had on Earth…I think. Tall and green. There were moss-covered stones, thick roots emerging from the ground. The occasional small critter scampering the forest floor kept my guard up. I kept the wall in my line of sight as I walked, making sure I didn’t get too close to the water’s edge. No sense in tempting fate.
I kept glancing towards the dense tree cover, waiting for something to jump out and scare me, when I noticed something dark along the shoreline. It was half in and half out of the water. For a moment, I thought it was a lorcan, so I froze in place, but as I watched, I noticed that whatever it was wasn’t moving. Still, it didn’t look like any carcass I’d ever seen…well, not that I remembered. It was maddening not to remember my life on Earth.
Against my better judgment, I walked a little closer towards the figure. From the safety of the edge of the woods, I watched for several minutes as the water crested over the mass. It was odd. Each time the waves receded, they seemed to drag a trail of black silt with it, disintegrating the carcass with each lap of the water.
Looking farther down the shoreline, I saw several others like this one, though each mass had varying levels of decay. From that point on, I opted to stay far away from the sea. Whatever was happening in those waters could not be good. They almost looked like the lorcan, but they were smaller, though no less terrifying. I wasn’t about to get closer to confirm it.
When I’d almost reached the wall, I noticed smoke. Tall, billowing clouds of dark smoke poured out of what appeared to be an entire row of fires spaced near the wall. They were all burning bright, save for one nearest the water. Its fire had died out.
Curious and still cold, I wondered if there was anyone manning the fires. There might be
someone there who could help me.
To help celebrate our release we are giving away 6 swag bags total (US Residents only) and 1 Paperback with a Netherworld skull bracelet (US Residents Only) and of course some e-book copies (open internationally). These are being hosted on the author's individual Fan Pages. Join their groups if you want to be a part of those giveaways!
Amy Miles: (Amy Miles Addicts-Official Fan Club)
Danielle Bannister: (Write all the words Danielle)