#FridayReads – ELI’S COMING – Welcome To The Darkness

Friday Reads

Love is about to make Eli the most dangerous man in the world.

Today I’m sharing a short excerpt from my novel Eli’s Coming. As most of you know, I write suspense. I’ve mentioned before that this is more by accident than by design. I write what’s in my head, and that most often falls somewhere within the various suspense/thriller genres. When I started writing Eli’s Coming, I’d expected the book to be psychological suspense. Then suddenly Eli tells me he has certain superhuman abilities. I listened and followed him, because that’s what I do. Turns out this book is suspense, in the most general sense. But it also has a strong supernatural component, though it’s not the ubiquitous vampires. Or werewolves. Or shapeshifters. Some early readers began calling it dark fantasy. That further stumped me. In fact, I was so confused that I had to research all the various subgenres. (There are far too many!) Turns out this book could be either supernatural suspense or contemporary fantasy. (There is a fine distinction between dark fantasy and contemporary fantasy.) If genre matters to you, I have finally figured out the answer. Sort of. I think.

Anyway, here’s a look:

ebookEli’s dark legacy holds murder as his rite of passage. They say his ability is a gift. He calls it a curse. A life of violence and heartache leaves him with nothing left to fight for.

Or so he thinks.

Amanda steals his heart, but love makes him vulnerable. He must give her up or accept who he is and fight.

Will he risk stepping into the darkness that could consume him?

 

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This scene is when Eli is finally admitting, at least to himself, that he can no longer fight the attraction he feels toward Amanda:

Eli woke Sunday morning to Amanda’s imprint on the bed beside him and the realization that he’d shared more with her than he had with any woman in his life. He brushed his fingers over the spot she’d laid in only hours before, wishing he could touch the energy she’d left behind. Before he’d driven her home last night, he’d felt how close the words were to the surface. She’d almost said them, those three words with the power to bring him to his knees.

I love you.

Love was a complicated mess he didn’t know what to do with. The word required an honesty he’d never considered approaching.

He’d broken the spell by getting up to go to the bathroom. If he’d let her say the words, he’d have had to say them back because that was how he felt too. But he wasn’t ready to make that kind of confession, or all the others that would inevitably have to follow.

The sigh that escaped his lips sounded like defeat. He made a pot of coffee, and carried his mug out onto the balcony. The sun was just beginning to chase away the darkness. Early-morning dew left the railing damp and slick. He lifted his mug in a toast to the new day.

He should not have allowed himself to fall in love.

For a time, he’d held on to the belief that he could let go of who he was. Step out of the shadows and away from all that defined him. Be normal.

He let go of that illusion now. He couldn’t stop being himself. If that was possible, he wouldn’t have gotten up to go to the bathroom last night. She’d have said the words he felt coming, because he wouldn’t have felt them at all.

Confessing his love without confessing the rest was possible, of course. He knew others who lived their entire lives partially in the shadows. The people who loved them most didn’t really know them at all. He didn’t want that for himself or for Amanda, which meant that, at some point soon, he’d have to decide; tell her the truth or walk away.

The sound of his doorbell snapped him back to the present. He rarely received visitors. Someone ringing his doorbell at barely 7 a.m. could only mean bad news. Either that or Amanda had decided to surprise him. That unlikely thought gave him a small amount of hope as he strode to his front door.

His hopes were stomped on when he pulled the door open.

Luc stood in the hallway, his usual swagger subdued. Restless energy buzzed and crackled. Eli took a step back, irritated by the intensity. “What’s going on?” he asked.

Luc followed him inside. “Sorry about the early hour. Tristan has called a meeting at the ungodly hour of 8 a.m.”

Eli pushed the door closed and shook his head. “I haven’t been to a meeting in months. You know that.”

“Yeah, you needed a break from it all. I get it. But this is an emergency meet. Tristan requested everyone’s presence. All kinds of chaos.”

“What are you talking about?”

“That coffee smells freakin’ heavenly. Seriously, my mouth is watering.”

Eli waved toward the kitchen, which was an open section to the left of the living room. “Help yourself.”

“The call woke me up an hour ago, and you know how I feel about mornings. I’d only been in bed a couple hours. Well, I’d only been sleeping a couple hours.” Luc grinned as he snatched a mug from the cupboard. “I’d been in bed most of the night.”

Eli ran a hand through his hair and groaned. “Luc. Your energy is sizzling.”

“Oh. Right. Sorry ’bout that.” Luc added two spoonfuls of sugar to his coffee, took a long drink, and gave a contented sigh. “Much better. I don’t know details. Tristan sent you a text that you probably didn’t read. Same one we all got. Then he called me, asked if I’d swing by and convince you to come.”

“Why?”

Luc shrugged. “I don’t know, dude. He wouldn’t say anything on the phone. You know how Tristan is about keeping council business behind closed doors. All I know is something serious went down and Tristan is freaked.”

“What could have him so worked up?”

Luc lifted an eyebrow. “You seriously asking that?”

“Right,” Eli muttered. “Something to do with dark powers.”

“Ah, the brain cells are finally clicking. Got an extra to-go mug? We need to get moving. Sorry to spring this on you.”

***

Thanks for reading. 🙂