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The Thulukan Chronicles Book One
When the creatures of myth and magic return to Earth, they're nothing like your mother's fairy tales.
Most of Thulu and La Fi's clients are dead. Which is perfect since their detective agency caters to the supernatural. So, a job finding relics for an ancient daemon should be simple.
The daemon needs the relics to keep a dangerous portal closed. His enemy, Gabriel, wants the relics to open the portal and give his people access to a new feeding ground – Earth.
Stunning humanity with their existence, portals to other worlds begin to open and the creatures of magic return to Earth.
When Gabriel threatens their family, Thulu and La Fi's search becomes personal. They'll need powerful allies in the race to find the relics before Gabriel does. But maybe that's what grateful dead, magical allies and daemonic clients are for.
Genre: Urban Fantasy
When the dead are afraid, you know there's a big problem. The fear cut through the abandoned warehouse as sharp as the dagger at my throat. The tall, powerful being easily held me immobile. Breaking promises and lying to ancient creatures who can make you very dead, very fast was not such a good idea.
Humans and non-humans, living and dead, all of us were cautious not to make any sudden moves that would send my captor over the edge.
I tried to take careful breaths. I was terrified, more afraid than I'd ever been in my life and in shock, too. Betrayal and death will do that to you, let me tell you. And this frozen tableau definitely wasn't part of the plan, either.
Like a car out of control on ice, my thoughts careened all over the place. I could only hope someone in the group was thinking clearer than me. I kept my eyes down to hide the emotions I knew would upset the others. No sense letting Thulu and the rest know just how freaked out I really was.
All I could tell myself was to breathe easy and try not to swallow. There was nothing but silence for long minutes, as both sides continued to wait. No one moved. Even the dead were frozen with fear. Now there's a scary thought.
* * *
I'm not quite sure how old I was when I first saw the dead. Maybe I'd been seeing them all my life and never realized it. They didn't approach me when I was a little kid, so it's hard to tell. Besides, I didn't really pay attention to people in the background. That all changed when I was ten years old and found out that I could communicate with them.
There was a big storm in Phoenix that early-spring day, and it was quite dark when I came out of my after-school computer club meeting. The other kids ran through the rain to waiting cars and SUVs, but my folks were late again.
I sat on the steps under an awning and watched the pounding rain as I waited. My parents were usually pretty good about being on time, but sometimes they got involved with a client in their small accounting firm and time got away from them. Usually they called my cell phone, but it had been silent that day. A sure sign they'd be there any moment.
I pulled my well-used copy of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix out of my bag and started reading it for about the fifth time.
I loved the smell of rain in the desert. There were a few gusts of wind and rain, but a light jacket was all I needed over my jeans and t-shirt. At one point I heard a loud crashing noise in the distance. I got up to check the sky for lightning, but the cloud cover was a dome of uniform dark gray.
I was always fascinated by the desert light shows of crackling lightning, but the show was dark that night. That one crash of thunder was all there was, so I gave up and went back to my perch on the steps. I got lost in my book, and it must have been half an hour later when I heard voices.
“Oh, there she is. Fiona, I'm sorry we're late.”
I looked up and saw my parents in the rain about twenty feet away, coming toward me. The lights from the well-lit school entrance didn't quite reach them for some reason. Or rather, the light seemed to go through them. I put my book in my bag, slipped a strap over one shoulder and looked up just as they got to me.
That's when I froze. I could see through them – both of them, just a bit.
Fear tinged my voice, “Mom? Dad?”
“I'm sorry we're late.” Dad gave me his crooked grin. “We were in a car accident, and we had to walk. It took a while in the rain.”
I think my horror finally registered with them.
“Fiona, what's wrong?”
“What happened to you – both of you?” I could feel the blood draining from my face. Suddenly, my hands were ice cold and shaking. My bag slipped back to the sidewalk.
They looked at each other in surprise, but they too realized that the other wasn't quite substantial. I don't know how long the three of us stood there, but it seemed an eternity. I watched their facial expressions change from concern to horror to resignation.
“I'm so sorry, my dear, sweet Fiona.” Mom's voice was gentle. “I don't think we will be picking you up after all.”
I felt the rain on my face as I looked from one parent to the other. I was a bright kid. I knew they were there to say goodbye. Whatever had happened, they were no longer alive.
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Maer Wilson Amazon author page
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