Denyse is taking over my blog today to talk about her awesome release Descent Into Darkness – what a cover!! She’s also offering a contest (more on that later). For now, here’s Denyse!!
Love That Lasts Forever
I write a lot of paranormal romance, despite it not being my favourite genre to read or write. Strangely, it is one of the genres I seem to write best, and the one to which most readers gravitate. I’ve read a lot the genre over the years, and in a lot of ways have come to understand the appeal of it. Forever love is a potent lure to the romantic heart, and I think that more than anything else is what appeals to all of us.
For me, the stories in which the immortal hero or heroine chooses to become mortal again are a major letdown. Yes, the restoration of an immoral being’s humanity is key to making a successful story, but in doing that, it isn’t really necessary to take away that creation’s immortality. Some readers, I know, thing the real redemption lies in the willingness to give up immortality for love–but for me, the real commitment to love lies in the desire to share it forever, which would be much more challenging in so many ways. Realistically, we will never really know if such a relationship could ever truly endure the passage of time. As mortals we’re restricted to the limited lifetime we are given in this world, so testing the strength of “forever” love is not something we’ll ever have the opportunity to do, is it?
I’ve been criticized often for writing very dark, amoral vampires, which I find a bit strange, honestly. Isn’t the allure of immortality partly based on the fact that you could do anything, be anything you wanted, have countless years to learn and acquire all your dreams? The thing is, if you really DO live forever, there is always going to be a time when there is little “new” to appeal to the endless curiosity that lives within us all and keeps us striving for our dreams. THIS is the kind of vampire I often create, the jaded, coldly disenchanted creature who exists but doesn’t live. Awaken a heart long gone cold and indifferent to humanity’s emotions, and you have a truly special love story. One of the older titles on my catalogue is a story like that, where the “hero” is an ancient, coldly jaded vampire, but in his past there was a woman who adored him above all else. He watched her die, was helpless to prevent it–and over 200 years later, she is reborn, a perfect reincarnation of the woman he has longed to hold again. Naturally, he has no intention of leaving her in peace. The novel is called Descent Into Darkness, and Liquid Silver Books published it a few years ago. If you like the setup, check it out. Here’s a brief excerpt:
DESCENT INTO DARKNESS
Available from Liquid Silver Books
“What is her name?”
“Whose name?” he asked as he shook off the ancient memories.
“Your daughter,” she insisted with an impatient toss of her head. “Is she one of us? Do you still keep her safe and protect her?”
“Diana needs no one to protect her,” he answered blandly. Especially the true father she does not know she has, he added mentally. He had been very careful to erase that knowledge from her memory, an appallingly easy task, even for one as inexperienced as he had been then.
“Diana,” she repeated thoughtfully. “It’s very pretty. And very elegant, as your name is,” she concluded with a grin.
“And your name, Camille, is very old. Do you know what it means?” he wondered, only now seeing the irony of it, himself.
“Tell me, cara mia,” she requested as she rose and sat astride his thighs. She was leaning into his neck when his laughter woke a warning inside her.
“It is from the Etruscan, one of the most ancient languages. Your name means ‘attendant at a sacrifice’,” he told her with mocking amusement. “It is most appropriate, is it not, cara?”
She started to pull away, but his hands on her upper arms prevented the escape she suddenly, desperately wanted. One of the talon like hands glided over her skin and buried in her hair. Terror choked her and she began pounding on his chest in an effort to dislodge him.
“Happy Birthday, cara,” Alexander murmured, his rich, silky voice low with provocative warmth. He jerked her head hard and sank his fangs into the soft, exposed skin of her throat. Tender flesh yielded to the razor-edge of his canines, and she whimpered weakly as he drank.
She wasn’t quite dead when he released her and climbed out of the bed. Her eyes watched every movement he made, and pleaded silently for help he wouldn’t give. He dressed and sat on the edge of the mattress again. Pale, slender fingers raked through the heavy fall of her dark hair, and he smiled lazily.
“Are you happy with your present, Camille?” he questioned.
She said nothing, merely stared. Of course, it wasn’t likely she could speak, he admitted when he noted her ruined throat.
“I have enjoyed our time together,” he told her with a smile. “I have even enjoyed sharing this secret with you. It’s been so long since I was able to speak of such distant things.” His tone was polite and conversational, eerily so. “But, such a weapon is a danger to me, cara. Therefore, I must protect myself against possible betrayal. You understand, don’t you?”
His laughter filled the room, and the sound was a horrifying mixture of insanity and pleasure. Alexander rose, donned the elegant evening cape he had selected earlier, and bent to place a light kiss on her forehead.
Camille stared, her eyes begged for mercy. His cold contempt shattered the last shred of will she possessed. The scritch of a match being struck, then the hiss of noise as it bloomed into flame, were now the only sounds within the room.
Alexander dropped the insignificant torch onto the bed and stepped back. He watched the sheets begin to burn as the searing tongues of fire fanned outward and slowly consumed the massive piece of furniture. Camille’s scream echoed in his mind as she died a true death, and he silenced the annoying intrusion with a swiftness that came from vast lifetimes of experience.
He walked from the room as the fire intensified, and knew the house itself would be ablaze long before any emergency services would be notified. He stepped out into the balmy night and strolled down the walk.
He was tired of San Francisco, he decided as he covered the ground in long, graceful strides. Talking of Diana reminded him of how long it had been since he’d seen her. And, he knew, she would know where to find Julian. His loneliness had made him whimsical this night. Perhaps it was time to reclaim the children who meant most to him? Particularly his most troublesome child.
Julian had been allowed to run free for far too long. Alexander now wanted him back. If the young nobleman refused him, Alexander would destroy him–as he had the other son who had forsaken his love so long ago.
The ancient vampire felt an unwelcome memory tugging at his heart as he continued to walk. The smell of the fire woke a pain he hadn’t permitted himself to feel for almost two hundred years. He’d lost her to fire and the grief he’d refused to accept still haunted him. His footsteps slowed momentarily, then he pushed away her image with a force of will that had been centuries in the making. Alexander shook his head, pretended he couldn’t recall the soft fragrance of wildflowers and the silken feel of copper hair as it streamed over his naked skin, the gentle smile contained within smoke-grey eyes, and the sensual knowledge of the truest lover he had ever claimed. His beautiful, devoted Amberlaine. Lost to him for nearly three centuries.
*** CONTEST ALERT *** CONTEST ALERT *** CONTEST ALERT ***
Leave a comment, and on the 24th I’ll pick a winner and send you a copy of the novel.
Thanks so much for having me here again today, Tina!
“Live the Romance, Become the Fantasy…”
** Best-Selling Author of 2011 **