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Desperate

“Thought I told you not to move.” His voice was barely recognizable, little more than a sexy rasp. He motioned to the chair where his utility belt lay. “Do I have to use my cuffs, or will you stay still?”

Cuffs? Oh hell, yes! An image of herself, restrained on the bed while Ethan teased and pleasured her needy flesh, flashed into her mind.

“…as chilling as it is sexy… This is much more than a romance.”
The Romance Reviews, 5 stars Top Pick

For her, he’ll break all the rules…

Upon returning to her hometown for her grandmother’s funeral, Sage Matthews is terrorized by a series of strange events. She dismisses each eerie occurrence as a by-product of her overwrought emotional state, until it becomes chillingly clear that something not of this world is desperate to get a message–or is it a warning?–through to her…

Detective Sergeant Ethan Blade comes to Cryton, South Australia, to catch a serial killer. When Ethan meets Sage–the latest victim’s beautiful granddaughter–his attraction to her is explosive and inconvenient. He knows she’s not crazy, but Sage’s theory about the murders is unbelievable.

With the handsome detective rejecting her ideas, Sage embarks on the supernatural journey that her grandmother started. What she discovers shatters everything Sage ever knew about herself–and who she really is.

Ethan’s routine case quickly turns personal when he discovers Sage is the killer’s next target. For her, he’ll break all the rules and cross every line. But how can he protect Sage from an evil he cannot even conceive of?

To save her, he must let go of everything he ever believed.

As featured on AusRom Today: “…the perfect culmination of paranormal mystery with steamy and sensual romance and just enough suspense and intrigue to guarantee a chilling, goosebump-invoking, story line… The Seer’s Daughter would be a brilliant option for adaption to screen–there’s a television series/movie in here for absolute certain.”

“Edge of your seat suspense…If you like John Saul or Dean Koontz with a side of intense Romance this is your next read.Clear a section of time from your day because you will not want to put this book down once you have it in your hands.” 5 Stars, Amazon review

“One of my most favorite reads this year!… It’s almost like Stephen King meets Christina Dodd…I loved it can’t wait for book two! 5 Stars, Amazon review

“…characters that her readers will be able to connect with and relate to, as well as a storyline that is engaging and intriguing. If that isn’t the hallmark of an great author, I’m not sure what is.” -Chris, 5 Star Readers Favorite.

“If you are looking for a book to give you goose bumps and keep you watching over your shoulder, then I can recommend this one!… I got dragged away from this book late in the evening by my husband, as I had an exceedingly early start the next day. This didn’t stop me from thinking about the book and what I had read for well over an hour after the lights went out, as well as dreaming about it!”
–Archaeolibrarian, 5 stars

“…a perfect blend of paranormal fiction and romantic suspense that had me completely captivated to the very last page… flawlessly delivered.”-Faridah, 5 stars, Readers’ Favorite

At precisely seven o’clock, the intercom sounds, and I press the button allowing access to the inner building. I cross the room to unlock the latches on the front door, leaving it slightly ajar.

Dashing back into my bedroom, I grab my clutch, phone and lip gloss. Quickly, I apply a light spray of my favorite perfume. When I return to the lounge, the front door is closed but the room is empty.

The picture on the wall is now hanging straight.

My heart gallops irregularly in my chest as I realize I didn’t check that it was Eric before I pressed the button.

Could Blake be here?

Breathe. In … out … in … out. I order myself to calm. The horror of my marriage with Blake returns in a single, sickening rush. What will he do when he finds me?

“Hello?” I call out, but my voice is raspy, barely a whisper.

I desperately hope for Eric’s easygoing greeting to ring out, but there is nothing but silence. My blood runs cold, and I can’t breathe.

My mobile slips from my shaking fingers. The thud as it hits the floor startles me out of shock, and I bend down to retrieve my phone. My lifeline.

Gripping my bag tightly, I estimate there are ten steps to the door. Silently I take the first few steps. On my fifth step, a shadow moves to my left, and I bolt the last distance and fling the door open with enough force that it bounces off the wall. I run to the elevator instead of the stairs, hoping it will be faster.

I jab frantically at the button. The screen indicates it has just left the ground floor.

“Ivy!”

It’s not going to arrive in time. I bounce up and down on the spot. Do I have time to take the stairs?

I’ll have to run past my front door to get there. Can I even run down the stairs in these shoes? I won’t have time to take them off; they have tiny buckles. Irrational thoughts flood through my mind, and I imagine myself stumbling and falling down the stairwell, only to land in a crumpled heap at the bottom.

Hurry up, damn it. The elevator has reached the second floor. There are six more to go.

Perhaps I should take the stairs?

“Ivy.” The voice permeates the fog of panic in my mind. It doesn’t sound like a sword being drawn out of a scabbard, sending cold shivers down my spine. It sounds soothing, like a cup of warm chocolate. The voice is calling for Ivy, not Sarah.

My mind blanks, and slowly, I turn towards the voice. The elevator rings, signaling its arrival. I can escape now. I look at Eric’s concerned face and realize there is no need to run. He puts a bottle of wine and a glass down on the ground just inside my apartment door and stands in front of me, grasping my shoulders.

“Ivy, are you okay? What is it?”

I realize how I must appear, like a wild animal that has just been through the throes of a chase from a predator. Eric pulls me to him in a powerful crush.

“Jesus, you are shaking like a leaf.” He runs a hand up and down my back, and I can hear his heartbeat, strong, calm, and reassuring through his chest.

Relief that Eric is here and not Blake, hits me with a powerful rush. Pulling away, I try to stand, but my knees wobble then buckle beneath me. When I hit the cold floor, I start to cry from the reminder that this is still far from over.

I still live with extreme fear that Blake will find me. And of what will happen when he does.

Strong arms lift me and through my sobs, and I hear the door shut. Finally, I begin to quiet enough to hear his soft, soothing words murmuring against my hair.

As my strength begins to return, I wriggle out of his arms. “Did you straighten that picture?” I demand.

Eric shrugs. “It was crooked.”

“Well, don’t … just don’t touch my things, all right?”

“Okay.” His face falls, and I immediately feel bad. He can’t possibly know that every day for years I lived with Blake’s obsessive compulsion to have things absolutely straight, and ordered the way he wanted it, right down to the cutlery in the drawer and the type of food we kept in the fridge.

I glance uneasily over to the vertical strip on the kitchen blind, and a shiver rolls down my spine. I still think I would have noticed it at some point before tonight. I have been living here for months now.

I can’t shake an instinctual feeling that he has been here, and it’s what caused my apparent over-reaction tonight. No matter how hard I try I can’t dislodge the thick and heavy sense of foreboding that has settled over me.

“Can you tell me what put that look of terror on your face and caused you to run for your life just now?”

My eyes take in the bottle of wine and empty glass on the floor. I realize Eric probably went straight to the kitchen when he arrived, casually straightening the picture on his way past. I cringe at how I must appear to him.

“You thought it was him. You thought he found you.” It wasn’t a question, but I nod anyway, not trusting myself to speak past the constriction in my throat.

“And the picture, straightening it is something he would do.”

Once again, I nod yes, and tears roll silently and unchecked down my cheeks.

“Oh Eric, I am so sorry.” A huge sob escapes, resounding loudly in the small room. I look away as embarrassment heats my cheeks.

“Sweet Jesus, what has that bastard done to you?”

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