REDEEMED IN DARKNESS
by Alexis Morgan
ISBN 13: 978-1416547136
ISBN 10: 1416547134
Publisher: Pocket Star
Release Date: December, 2007
Alexis Morgan's sizzling paranormal Paladin series continues with a beautiful and courageous female warrior who can't resist the man of her dreams--even if he is her sworn enemy . . .
A female leader from the Other world, Lusahn q'Arc can't forget the Paladin warrior she met in battle--his chiseled body and piercing, thoughtful eyes still haunt her dreams. When Lusahn learns that her missing brother Barak is alive and working with the enemy, she arranges to meet him--but it is not Barak who apears, but Cullen Finley, the Paladin who torments her memory. Intense attraction instantly burns between them despite their rival loyatlies, and they can't help surrendering to passion. Yet their time together is limited, for soon Cullen must return to his own world--with or without Lusahn. But when carefully laid plans go awry, they must fight for their forbidden love--and to keep one another alive.
Chapter 1 REDEEMED IN DARKNESS
The barrier shimmered and stretched thin, the beautiful cascade of color giving way to streaks of sickly light. To a lesser degree, Lusahn shared her older brother's ability to read the barrier's moods and knew it would fail soon. In fact, very soon.
She drew her sword. Its familiar weight kept her grounded against the flood of emotions threatening to shatter her control: anger, grief, and a sense of betrayal that ran so deep her blood boiled with it.
Barak was alive.
Not only alive, but living and thriving among the enemy. He stood convicted of treason, the evidence a note written by his own hand and tossed across from the enemy world into hers. By the laws of her people, he was already condemned, only awaiting the swing of a sword to carry out the execution. Her brother, her sword, her duty.
She closed her eyes and imagined the smooth stroke of her blade biting into Barak's neck, the slight resistance of the skin and muscle and bone giving way before the razor sharp metal. If she was lucky, or perhaps if Barak was, it would require but a single blow to take his head.
And then what?
The q'Arc clan numbered but two now. If she were to end her brother's life, she alone would carry on the burden of their family name and honor. The idea made her sick. She had already grieved over him when he'd sought out the light of the other world, even knowing that it meant certain death at the hands of the Earth's warrior clan.
As much as she'd mourned his passing, at least she'd understood it. Glaring at the note in her hand, she once again read the words written in Barak's angular scrawl, asking that she cooperate with the enemy for the sake of both of their worlds. At least he had not asked for mercy, only a brief meeting at an appointed time.
He had to know that she would be waiting for him, sword in hand. Her first duty as a Sworn Guardian was to protect their people, even from themselves. Secondly, with their parents both gone, defending the family honor was her duty. As much as she missed them, at least they had not lived long enough to learn of their son's disloyalty. No matter what pressures had driven him into the light, she would not, could not forgive a betrayal of this magnitude.
Barak had been considered truly blessed in their world because of his affinity with not just the blue jewels that gave them light, but for stone of all kinds. A gift as strong as his came along perhaps once in a generation.
How could he live among the enemy when his own world needed him so badly? When she needed him? The fact that he'd survived the crossing at all was unusual, but what had he found in that strange place of light that had ensnared him?
An image replaced Barak's in her mind, that of the warrior whom she'd fought on her single crossing into the light. It was a day that remained sharp in her mind despite the passage of moon cycles. She and her Blade of three had followed the trail of stolen blue jewels across with the intent of dragging the thieves back to stand trial for their crimes. Unfortunately, the warrior Paladins had already executed the traitors.
She and her Blade had hoped to return to their world without incident, but that wasn't to be. They'd run right into two of the enemy at the edge of the barrier. She'd signaled her Blade to occupy the green-eyed devil while she took on his companion. She hated Paladins, but had to admire their lethal skill with swords.
Even now she could remember the power with which her opponent had fought. With his dark eyes blazing, he'd dazzled her with his sleek moves. His bigger friend fought her Blade with brut strength and muscle, but this one had danced with lethal grace and beauty.
Her warrior heart had admired his skill; her woman's body had admired him on a whole different level. More often than she cared to admit, the human had revisited her in dreams. She shook her head. Now was not the time for such thoughts.
The barrier flickered again, almost but not quite failing completely. She moved closer, ready to face her brother one last time. Her soul ached with the pain, but she would do her duty. It was all she had left.
The Paladin series takes on a whole new twist as readers get their first view into the world of the demonized Others. Supposed facts begin to change as startling new information is revealed in this splendid, evolving series. The pressure is on, and the romance is sizzling!
Joyfully Reviewed -- REDEEMED IN DARKNESS is magnificent . . . A recommended read!
Romance Junkies 5 Blue Ribbons!
-- her romances are hot, sexy, and sensual . . .
Sandi Potterton, RomanceJunkies.com
Romance Reviews Today -- With characters you'll fall in love with, a mystery waiting to be solved, betrayal, danger, and unexpected allies, REDEEMED IN DARKNESS proves yet again that Alexis Morgan pens a fantastic tale . . .