Amazing cover and series design by Marisa covermedarling
Stock photos from depositphotos and pixabay
Professional editing by M. E. Weglarz of megedits, a woman with a true gift for spotting plot holes, character anomalies, black holes, and other potential WTFs. Thank you, Meg, from the bottom of my heart.
And special thanks to some very special ladies for agreeing to beta read this book and providing such wonderful feedback. This is a better story because of them!
... and THANK YOU to all of you for selecting this book. You didn’t have to, but you did.
Before You Begin
Fallen Angel is the second book in my Mythic series. Each story is a full book in and of itself, a standalone story of paranormal romance with plenty of humor and emotion.
Within the pages, you will encounter vampires, shifters, angels, demons, fae, witches, mages, goddesses... just to name a few. It is only recently that these Extraordinaries, as they call themselves, coexist peacefully in the idyllic community of Mythic. Very few know of their existence; understandably, they prefer to keep to themselves. However, you’ve been granted a special look into the world of these amazing beings. But be warned -—once you visit Mythic, you might not want to leave.
WARNING: This book contains some adult language and situations, and is intended for mature (18+) readers only.
Chapter 1 – Angels and Assets
“It’s almost time, Claire,” Ryssa whispered softly, her voice as smooth as crushed velvet over silk. “He’s here.”
The older woman breathed in wonder, her thin fingers gripping Ryssa’s with surprising strength. She blinked her cornflower blue eyes, now glazed with milky white, once, twice, focusing in the same direction as Ryssa. Slowly, the far wall of her small bedroom faded away. In its place appeared a celestial landscape, blurry around the edges, with a backdrop of the Northern Lights. Out of the swirling mist walked a tall male figure.
“He’s so handsome,” Claire managed, forcing the air up through collapsing lungs to form the words.
“Of course he is,” Ryssa said, relieved to see that it was Zach who had come. “He is an angel.”
Ryssa didn’t really think someone from the other place would come for the kindly great-grandmother, but she had been surprised before. No one really knew what secrets might lie beneath a gentle smile and laughing eyes. It was why judgment was best left to those with the ability to see past the surface, who could look beyond the cover and know how the story ended without ever having to open the book.
Radiant golden hair surrounded a face truly sculpted by the hand of God as the angel stepped into the room. It was a face Ryssa knew well. No matter how many times she saw it, it never got old. Her heart pumped hard against the inner walls of her chest as she felt the tickling tingle of the angel’s inner light against her skin. She caught a flash of white – white silk shirt, white silk pants, white wings tipped in gold – before she dropped her eyes. He was so beautiful, it physically hurt to look at him, unless you were heaven-bound, like Claire.
“Hello, Claire,” the angel said with a smile, his voice deep and symphonic, filled with music and hope and everything good. “Are you ready to continue your journey?”
Claire squeezed Ryssa’s hand harder, making her wince. Death was rarely easy, even for the blessed.
“Zach will take good care of you, Claire,” Ryssa assured her. She lifted the old woman’s hand and placed it in the angel’s without meeting his assessing gaze, choosing instead to stare at his feet. They were bare, visible beneath the hem of his silken pants, and every bit as beautiful as the rest of him. Ryssa fought the urge to go to her knees and kiss them.
“Will you not look at me, Ryssariel?” Zach asked in his melodic tones. It was everything an angel’s voice should be, filling her with love and warmth and light even as tears pooled behind her eyes.
“No,” she whispered. To look would remind her of everything she had lost, everything she could never have. Heaven was for good people like Claire who spent their lives doing good things and loving people. Not those like Ryssa.
Zach sighed. Before he could say another word, Ryssa stood and leaned over Claire. Peace had already begun to settle into the older woman’s features as her physical form shut down, system by system. Ryssa smiled, her eyes filled with moisture though she hadn’t known Claire for long at all.
“Go on now. It’s not good to keep an angel waiting.”
“Bless you, child,” Claire said on her final exhale.
Claire had no idea how much those words hurt, though Ryssa appreciated the thought behind them. She turned away as the old woman’s immortal soul lifted from her withered human shell and floated toward Zach. Ryssa didn’t need to see that.
* * *
“Ryssa said you would take good care of me,” Claire said to Zach. No longer confined by her body, her soul took on the form of a woman in the prime of her life. Young and beautiful once again, she held on to Zach’s arm as he escorted her out of the stuffy room and into the cool, tunnel-like walkway leading to the next phase.
Zach glanced over the woman’s shoulder, saw the petite brunette slipping out of the window and disappearing from sight into the night.
“Ryssa is right,” he said with a tender smile.
“But who will take care of her?”
Surprised by the woman’s perceptiveness, he turned to her. “I am still working on that part,” Zach murmured quietly.
Claire’s bright blue eyes lit up. “Can I help?”
* * *
It was child’s play to slip out from Claire’s first-floor home infirmary without notice, especially for someone with Ryssa’s skills. Petite and lithe, she slipped across the neatly trimmed lawn without making a sound, just another shadow of black and gray in the pre-dawn hours.
It didn’t mean she could dawdle, though. The sun would be up in less than an hour, and it wouldn’t do to be caught skulking around the middle-class section of town. Sheriff Ben Davis would love another excuse to haul her ass in to the station and throw his excessive weight around.
As if a blowhard like him could hope to intimidate her.
The odious man was a pain in her behind. Like a clichéd caricature, he sported a beer belly, bulldog jowls, and half-bald head. He got off on asserting his authority on anyone he deemed weaker than him. He, like so many of the small town’s so-called “finest”, were nothing but overgrown bullies who weren’t really cut out to do anything else.