Can a demon’s heart of ice be thawed?
Ash may have escaped death several times, but now things are finally looking up. The doppelganger is gone, she’s dating Leo, and the Venantium are staying away from her – for now. But a new threat rises from the Darkworld, and only the fortune-teller knows the true extent of the danger they’re in.
Lucifer, a sorcerer who did the impossible and cheated death through escaping to the Darkworld, is on the move. Now his second-in-command, Mephistopheles the demon, is loose in our world – and will do anything to win Ash over to his side.
The Venantium fear a repeat of the Demon Wars, the demonic invasion that wiped out the Blackstone family. But there’s more to those events than the records reveal. When Ash finds the lost diary of Melivia Blackstone, she starts to dig into the past to find the town’s forgotten history – leading to a revelation that shocks her to the core.
Leo seems to be the only person Ash can rely on, yet can she truly open up to him, knowing what she is? Blackstone’s dark history is rising to the surface, and it seems even memory can lie. The worst betrayal waits around the corner, and Ash has to decide whether to trust Leo with her darkest secret, even when it has the potential to destroy them both…
Fire sprang up all around me, orange flames licking at my skin. I flinched away from the writhing wall of fire, which cut off any chance of escape.
I stood in a large room, a bedroom. Through the haze of smoke I could see a four-poster bed, its feathery curtains ablaze. Flickering tendrils of fire ate away at the posh-looking furniture, smoke gushing out in clouds. On the wall opposite hung a magnificent, gilt-framed painting of a girl with long, curly black hair. As I watched, the paint peeled away from the background as the ever-spreading blaze devoured it. Underneath the roar of the fire I heard a whimper, and realised I wasn’t alone.
A girl crouched in the corner of the room, arms wrapped around her knees, apparently oblivious to the fire raging around her. I
tried to walk over to her but a wall of flames barred my way, flaring out of the lush carpet.
The girl raised her head, but she didn’t seem to see me standing there. She was older than I’d thought; her hunched position had
made her look like a child, but she was probably around the same age as me. Her dark hair spilled from a bun, and her gown, similar to the one in the painting, was crumpled and stained, as though she’d fallen in the mud outside.
Her eyes looked right through me, and I gasped. They shone violet. A demon’s eyes.
She doubled over, coughing. I tried to call to her to get out of the burning room, but it was like something had stapled my mouth
shut. Dreaming. I’m dreaming.
Her eyes flashed again, turning grey-black, ordinary, human. I recognised it. She was fighting possession with everything
“Is this what you want?”
The demon used her mouth to speak, but didn’t need to; its voice sounded in my mind, sliding through me like an ice-cold knife.
“I’ll burn you,” she said, in a tremulous voice. “I’ll burn with you.”
When you have a connection to the Darkworld, nowhere is truly safe.
Ashlyn has found a new home in Blackstone, but when a spate of grave robberies across the country spark fears that someone is practicing illegal sorcery, she comes under the radar of the Venantium, the protectors of the Barrier between her world and the Darkworld, who are suspicious of any sorcerer unaware of their origins.
The trouble is, what Ash does know might just get her killed.
Sufferers of the dangerous condition known as the vampire’s curse are being brutally killed, and the latest victim is Leo’s guardian, the ex-head of the Venantium. Ash determines to help Leo find out what’s really going on, but it isn’t long before events are spiralling out of control. The dead are rising from their graves, and the barriers around Blackstone are threatened by a demon which looks exactly like Ash herself…
When university student Claudia’s life takes a turn for the weird, she finds her new social life revolves around fighting sinister shadow-monsters and trying not to get arrested by the creepy organization which hunts them down. When a fellow magic-user comes to her for help, Claudia is pulled into a web of secrets – secrets that might cost more than her life.
Emma is the author of various fantasy novels, including the universe-hopping urban fantasy Alliance series and the YA paranormal Darkworld series.
Emma spent her childhood creating imaginary worlds to compensate for a disappointingly average reality, so it was probably inevitable that she ended up writing speculative fiction with magic and monsters. She lives in the middle of England, but dreams of exploring the Multiverse. When she’s not immersed in her own fictional worlds, Emma works as a freelance editor and proofreader and reads an improbable number of books.