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Heart’s Inferno #4

This has been an even tougher book to write. It was looong, intense, and emotionally draining in the end. As Týr opened up, he took a little bit of my soul in the process–this snarky Guardian who hid an abyss of pain, until Kira.

Týr & Kira’s story is almost here…

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Pre-Order: AMAZON KOBO | NOOK | iTUNES | SMASH

COVER: Montana Jade

Blurb

He’s a killer…
Through the ages, deadly Guardian Týr watches over the mortal realm with a sword that is as blood-drenched as his soul in his quest for vengeance—his sarcasm a shield for the deepening hell inside him. Until one glimpse of a breathtaking, carefree female stops him dead in his tracks…but she’s the one person he can never have.
Still, she has to be the most exasperating female on the planet, with a tendency to land herself in sticky situations.

She’s happiness incarnate…
Bumping shoulders with intractable immortals is not Kira Smith’s idea of fun. An unfortunate encounter with a certain, absurdly good-looking, über hot warrior undoes all her hard work, and the homeless boy she rescued escapes back into the demon-infested alleys. She’ll do whatever she must to save the child…even tolerate the arrogant, know-it-all as her bodyguard.

For her, he’ll break all the rules…
Thrown together in this treacherous hunt, long suppressed emotions unravel, and Týr will do anything to claim the woman who stirs his deepest desires.
Kira longs to succumb to the happiness she finds in him. Except, Fate isn’t always kind, revealing a dark destiny she never expected. It’s one that could very well tear them apart…

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Please note, this book is set after the novella For You, I Will #3.5 in the Fallen Guardians’ series.
And can be read as a standalone. But for better reading enjoyment, it is best if you fully immerse yourself in the Fallen Guardians’ World first.
No cliffhanger.

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Editorial Review:
“I feel like I’ve waited for my sweet-toothed Guardian’s book forever, and Ms. Hunter did not disappoint. Quite possibly her sexiest one yet, and full of action and heart, HEART’S INFERNO scorches the pages and leaves you wanting more. The Fallen Guardians and their mates captivate me every single time.” ~Chelle -Literally Addicted to Detail

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                      Chapter 1

The castle pulsated as if happiness exploded through it.

Flowers were everywhere. Even the windowsills of the back stairwell hadn’t escaped the intruders.

Týr tugged off the tie constricting his windpipe as he jogged up the narrow steps to the second level, nearly knocking the purple and white joys of nature spilling from the vases to the floor. Hell, a person could suffocate from all the gaiety floating around. The things he endured for his fellow Guardians.

Blaéz and Darci had tied the knot earlier that evening. Sure, he was happy for them, but all this cheeriness abraded his psyche like sandpaper. Two minutes tops, and he was outta here.

Sounds of footsteps. Dagan’s quiet voice drifted to him. “You’re heading out on patrol?”

Damn. His escape hadn’t gone unnoticed. “Yeah.” Týr didn’t look back, just continued upward.

“This event’s certainly been an eye-opener.”

Dagan snorted. “We’re fine.”

More convo he didn’t want. Especially of this sort. “Why? You gonna follow soon? Not sure of your mate yet?”

The male knew him well enough not to rise to his baiting. Týr was grateful that they’d finally put aside the eons-old cold silence between them, but he wasn’t in the mood for chit-chat. The tension in him grew, stirring the raucous rustling in his skull—a harbinger of a time he didn’t want to remember. As if he could ever escape those memories.

Tie dangling from his fist, he strode down the softly lit corridor to his quarters and shut the door behind him. The oppressive stillness of the darkened room grated on him, as did all the love in the air downstairs. With his mind, he flipped on the music system in the living room, and the thumping sounds of Metallica reverberated against the wall, crashing into his head.

Since his heightened senses made everything clear as fuck, he didn’t bother with the lights and made his way to the door past the huge fireplace.

In his gloomy dressing room, he flung the tie on the dresser, the tuxedo he’d worn as best man following seconds later. Exhaling deeply, Týr rubbed his face, his palms brushing his jaw. He grimaced at the sharp sting of the arc-shaped wound there. Two days, and it still hadn’t healed. Fury slid through him, dark and deadly.The asshole who’d dared mark him had hidden under cover of night like a fucking coward. But Týr was patient. No enemy escaped him for long. Ever.

He opened the closet running the length of the wall, got out his leathers, a blackHenley, and boots. Back in the familiar comfort of his patrolling gear, biker jacket in hand, he switched off the music and headed out. His footsteps thudded on the marble floors of the elegant corridor, dotted sporadically by old suits of armor and priceless paintings on the cream walls.

Yo, Norse, you heading out on patrol? Aethan mind-linked with him.

Yeah.

You with Ely tonight?

Damn, Týr’d forgotten about their newest Guardian recruit and his babysitting duties. He’d have to put tracking the shadowy bastard on the backburner for tonight. Might as well get in his turn. Sure.

As Týr rounded the balustrade to the main stairs, he easily picked up on the chatter and laughter from the guests lingering in the rec room on the ground level where the reception had taken place.

Hell, the wedding was over. They should all go home.

A light, familiar fragrance drifted to him, and Týr slowed, his stomach twitching. In the last couple of days, the scent had enclosed him like a net, as if trapping him in a sun-drenched meadow.

Hers. A precursor to happiness.

The female appeared immersed in the sentiment, dragging joy with her wherever she went. Even his fury at his stalker subdued a little.

Another reason he had to get outta here, back to the alleyways where danger trawled in the shadows. He needed to find his normal again—far more preferable.

“Hedori, please, I need to leave.”

“I wish I could help you, Kira, but it’s impossible right now.”

Yep, their butler, all-round handyman, and sometimes mates’ bodyguard, possessed a helluva lot of patience. If it were him, he’d tell her to chill. There’d been a wedding, an unprecedented event at the castle, and Hedori had things to oversee.

Pleeease, Heds,” she wheedled. “It’s urgent.”

Týr snorted. Feminine wiles, the most dangerous weapon of all. He’d found that out in the hardest possible way a long time ago.

But she sure seemed desperate.

What was so important anyway? It wasn’t even ten yet. Maybe she had another ridiculous, drivel-filled novel to nosedive into or…she’d had enough of his magnificent company this evening.

Nah. Everyone loved his awesomeness.

With wry amusement, he headed down the grand staircase that spilled out onto the huge foyer. The tiered chandelier cast prisms of light over the colorful stained-glass windows running from floor to ceiling. And, along with the usual verdant plants in the foyer, the new invaders—tall, pewter vases, overflowing with various shades of purple flowers—took up space.

Yup, eye-catching, and the perfect backdrop for the she-devil who stood there, her curvy figure clad in a slinky lilac bridesmaid’s gown. Her dark auburn hair had been pulled into some kind of topknot. Sure, she was breathtaking, he wasn’t blind, just messed up in the head. But that sharp tongue of hers usually ruined the effect of her beauty.

As Týr jogged down to the ground floor, Hedori acknowledged him with a nod, and the ice queen who’d reigned during the reception and tacitly ignored his provocations turned, too. Her hazel-green eyes flared in irritation, the color a startling contrast to her luscious, creamy-latte skin.

“Sire, we have a bit of a situation,” Hedori said. “With the fae here, and guests still about, I cannot leave the castle just yet. Would you take Kira home?”

“No-no, Heds,” she quickly countered. “I’ll wait for you.”

He should leave, walk out. Aethan or another could take her, but Týr couldn’t resist. “Ah, Fluff, you wound me. Truly.”

Her head snapped his way. “Yes…maybe, if I thought for one second there was a heart or soul buried somewhere deep down under that shell,” she said sweetly, tone spiked with venom. She faced Hedori again, sweet as treacle. “How long do you think you’ll be?”

Hiding his amusement, Týr sighed loudly as if put out. “C’mon, Fluff, let’s get you home.”

She pivoted so fast, fingers fisting as if she wanted to punch him. “Call me that again, and I swear, I’ll—” She broke off, her expression tightening as softer footsteps echoed. Lila Smith, their Oracle and the she-devil’s grandmother, rounded the staircase a moment later.

Hedori nodded to them and departed.

“Thank goodness you’re still here, Kira dear,” Lila breathed. “Would you— Oh, hello,Warrior,” she greeted him softly with a regal incline of her gray-haired head.

Lila usually treated the Guardians injured by those annoying demon bolts with her miracle potions and salves since they couldn’t self-heal that crap fast enough.More annoying, those open wounds acted like a damn tracking device for the hellscums.

“Oracle,” he returned politely.

Lila glanced back at Kira. “I have to go to Seattle for a few days. The coven has a problem and needs my help. It would ease my mind if you stayed here at the castle until my return.”

“Gran, I don’t know why you worry so much. It’s not the first time I’ve been alone.Besides, I have to go to work. I’ll be okay, really.”

Týr could sense the Oracle’s growing anxiety, though her expression remained serene.It could only mean that whatever had gotten her so worked up was serious.Michael should talk to her. Better if the Guardians knew what trouble was stirring.

Lila glanced at him. “Warrior? Would you—?”

“Gran, no!”

Her horrified yell had Týr narrowing his eyes. He’d be the first to admit that he wasn’t fit company for females to be around for any length of time, but she and the Oracle were under Michael’s protection, and by default, the Guardians’, too.

And he took his damn job seriously.

“It would be my absolute pleasure,” he overrode Kira’s protest with as much sincerity as he could dredge up.

If it were anyone else they would have undoubtedly stepped back at her death glare.

But his own perverse nature when it came to her wouldn’t let him back down. He merely quirked an eyebrow, enjoying her flush of frustration, and sent a quick telepathic message to Aethan. Babysit Ely tonight.Have to do a favor for the Oracle.

Would that have anything to do with a certain bridesmaid who wants to leave immediately? the Empyrean shot back, laughter echoing through their mental connection.

Damn smug bastard. As if he needed another funny-man around. Týr shut off their mind-link with a hard slam.

“Are you leaving also?” Týr asked the Oracle, suspending his silent stand-off with Kira.

“Yes, if you wouldn’t mind, Warrior.”

“Not at all.” He crossed to the enormous front door, opened it, and stood back.

“I’ll go get my coat.” Lila hurried off.

Kira stomped past him with no outdoor wear or scarf. Hell, he’d never known lush lips could thin so much. Týr followed her out into the freezing weather. “Where’s your jacket?”

“I’m hot.”

“Yeah, you are,” he muttered under his breath.

Her head snapped to him, eyes flashing in suspicion.

He cast her an innocent stare.

Scowling, she went back to slaying the trees with her glower. He shook his head wryly. It must be the drugged air from so many flowers in the castle responsible for him uttering that provocative nonsense.

Continue reading chapter 1: HERE

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