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Published by: Soul Mate Publishing
Release Date: 5/24/23
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When Katrina Paul is summoned to rescue an agent in the middle of the night, she does so without hesitation. The last thing she expects is her old flame Derek to come tumbling through her hasty portal. She’d left Toronto—and Derek—behind when she’d relocated to Richmond for good reason.
If not for Katrina’s ability, healing talent Derek Forester would have been trapped in a mission gone wrong. He hadn’t expected to see Katrina again, but he had never forgotten the way she made him feel. He’d done the right thing, but seeing her again made him question the wisdom of that choice.
Almost as soon as he arrives, mysterious entities begin plaguing them. Someone is trying to keep them together and engineered his rescue to Richmond. It has the touch of the mysterious new entity Whisper, but why?
Soon they are on the run, keeping one step ahead from energy beings that find them no matter where they go. When a crisis triggers a new, hidden talent between them, it becomes clear that this entire situation has been a setup. Right from the beginning.
As the truth about their power begins to emerge, Katrina realizes that she’s never stopped loving Derek. But when they learn that everything they understood about their past and their present is false, they wonder if anything between them is real.
At the critical moment of danger, will their talent save them? Or will they lose it all in a fiery cataclysm that dooms their hearts—and their lives?
“Why did you get me out of bed? I barely got to sleep before you were calling me again.”
Quillan glanced at his watch and looked at the door. Katrina followed his gaze and made out the usual stream of morning patrons, but that was all.
“We’re meeting our new arrival.” Quillan’s tone brooked no argument. He studied his watch again. In this day and age many didn’t wear timepieces, but Quillan Hardis was a throwback.
“You mean Derek Forester? Okay, but why am I here? And why are we meeting him in public? I supposed you’d keep him hidden.”
Quillan shook his head. “There’s little point to that. Our enemies will learn where he went in no time.”
She stifled a yawn, picking at the blue inlay of the wood table they were seated at. Quillan was in the booth, leaving Katrina to sit in the green chair opposite him, staring at pictures of dogs. Quillan continued to study the front, past the plate glass stenciled with the name Citizen. The tables were close together, with little privacy. Nothing made sense.
The silence stretched out, a tactic she had become familiar with in Universe training. Though she wasn’t that good at it, Katrina tried to emulate Quillan’s behavior, and say nothing.
“Hello, sorry I’m late.”
The voice came from behind her. She swallowed and waved a hand in his direction.
“I said seven AM,” Quillan said with a hint of asperity.
“And I just got yanked through a portal and am a thousand miles from home. I had a few things to tie up.”
“Six hundred miles, not a thousand. I like promptness. Remember that.”
Derek slung his body into the green chair next to her. A waiter came over with menus and a coffee pot. Derek nodded yes while he studied the menu, his stomach growling audibly.
“Whatever you say. I need caffeine and some solid food. It’s been a while since I’ve eaten,” Derek said, his silky baritone sliding across her senses.
Quillan grunted and Katrina focused on Derek. He had a faint dusting of hair on his cheeks, evidence of a hasty toilette with no razor. His amber eyes stood out like a beacon on his tan skin, startling in their color. He had full lips and a generous nose. His hands were long and tapered, those of a musician—or a healer.
“If you like it spicy, I sometimes get the disco eggs.” She pointed to the item. “Or the huevos rancheros are good too. If not, you could build an omelet. That’s always reliable.”
Derek raised an eyebrow and amusement lurked on his features.
“Noted.” His rumble was silk and fine wine, the smooth tone delighting her senses.
Katrina had assumed that in the months she’d been in Richmond she’d put her stupid crush aside. Derek Forester was in love with Samantha, not her.
“There’s also crepes, if you like your breakfast sweeter.” She was babbling and clamped her mouth shut to stem any more words.
“Thank you, Katrina,” Derek said. She had to stop, but the combination of her new boss and her ex-lover left her flustered.
“Welcome,” she muttered, taking a sip of her coffee.
“Derek, we cannot discuss all that happened yesterday right now.” Quillan gazed around the crowded restaurant with a raised eyebrow.
“No kidding. Why are we at this place? The Universe building would have been safer.”
Katrina smiled at the man, his thoughts echoing hers. Awareness sliced through her at his glance and she suppressed a shiver.
“We are waiting to see who shows up,” Quillan responded. “I am curious whether Night Stars or Whisper was responsible for what happened yesterday.”
Whisper. Katrina had last encountered members of the rogue group when she assisted a former Richmond member—Logan Bradley—in a mission in Miami. There they’d faced down the Bogeyman, a lethal terror talent, and a girl who had been taken in by him. She’d heard rumors in that same mission that Windsor Nickels, a legend within Universe, had switched allegiances to Whisper. She had not learned anything since then.
Derek’s gaze went to Katrina again. “What I know about Whisper wouldn’t even fill this teaspoon. Sounds need to know, and I won’t ask. We should consider the possibility that this may have nothing to do with me, but everything to do with your portal talent.”
Quillan nodded. “A possibility as well.”