Friday, September 7, 2012

Author Focus: Kerianne Coombes

Demon Tales 2
Kerrianne Coombes

Once cursed and now cured, Prince Torc is determined do the ‘right thing’ for his kingdom. Second son in line for the throne, Torc is desperate to make up for his time as a bitter trouble maker. When the king of a neighboring kingdom talks of a possible match with his daughter, Torc offers himself up.

With ideas of success and wealth at the forefront of his mind, Torc never imagines that anything could go wrong.

When Rose, a hand maiden to the former queen of Tempath, is sent to serve her cousin, she is treated to the toughest cruelty she has ever known. Rejected by her mother and passed around like an unwanted puppy, Rose dreams of a life of opulence. When Prince Torc arrives at the castle, with his dark eyes and gentle touch, she is reminded that not everyone is evil.

Torc shoved her away and took off running. His heart beat heavy, frantic beats as he charged through the busy kitchens. Staff turned and gasped their outrage as he ploughed through the hot room like a bull chasing a red rag. He slammed into the closed wooden door on the right and the timber splintered against the wall, the smash creating a deafening crack of sound that distorted against his eardrums.In the corner of the small, sweaty room, there was a body laid on the floor. Torc could see no features as the face was covered, but it was the fall of golden blonde hair that sent ice-cold fear through his body.Rose…“No!”He crashed into the room and shoved a clothes rack to the side in his haste to reach her. Pain lashed at his mind and agony tore through his soul, as he pleaded to anyone who was listening for her to be all right.Please, gods, let her be well!Torc dropped to his knees and reached for her. His hands shook as he rolled her over, and his stomach lurched dangerously at the sight of her pale face. He instantly saw the burn on her cheek, and he tipped his head back to roar with outrage.Who had done this to her?He reached under her to lift her up, but yanked his hand back when he felt wetness. He looked at his hand, and it was red with blood. His stomach dropped and his mind screamed all kinds of horrors at him. Had she been stabbed? There was certainly enough blood for that.“Oh, gods, please. No…”Gently, Torc rolled her to her side, where he pulled the blanket she was wrapped in away from her shoulders.Her pale back was covered with red, angry—bleeding—lines. Torc knew straight away what they were, and for a moment he was nearly blinded by rage.Someone had savagely whipped Rose. Someone would die.For a second time he reached under her, this time taking care not to hurt her further. His hands shook and his insides roiled, and every time he felt a fresh new wound, his heart sank further into his boots. Torc climbed to his feet, disgusted and heartbroken by what he saw, and what he felt.He took a moment to look at Rose, watched her chest as it rose and fell with little breaths, and felt gratified that she wasn’t dead—oh little mercy. His eyes passed over the fresh burn on her cheek, and he had to close his eyes for a brief moment, not sure he could compose himself if he looked at it for longer.What had happened to her?He staggered out into the busy kitchen. Everyone, even the old chef, just watchedhim as he wandered into the room carrying a nearly-dead Rose. He breathed fast, barely holding onto his anger as he pinned each demon with hisstare. He closed his hold around Rose and sucked in a breath. “Who did this?”

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