Blurb for the CK Prequel:
While restoring a ceiling mural in Jenson, Addison meets Christian, who commissions her to do a painting for his employer, Master Vallore. It seems like love at first sight for the pair, and he seems like “the one”. There’s something a bit odd about her love, though, but she’s fallen so hard for him, she tries to ignore her silly suspicions. Her perfect man couldn’t really be a vampire, could he?
Like I promised, here’s an excerpt from the Christian’s Kisses prequel. I picked a romantic excerpt this time 🙂
I’m still struggling to find a title I like for all the books, so the prequel is untitled right now and this is only a working blurb.
The series will be self-published so it will take me a lot longer to polish the books than if I had contracted it to a publisher. So, bear with me, because release dates for them will probably have long gaps between them. There is currently five books in the new series, plus the prequel, so…almost six books (maybe seven if book 4 is split into two).
Okay…onto the excerpt! I hope you enjoy it!
With the handle of a brush paused near her lips, Addison’s expression was stern as she studied her work. She had to make sure it was historically accurate to the original piece, but since there was no documentation on what it looked like, she had to guess.
A few people entered the room, their arrival quite distracting. Two large men flanked a very important looking one in a suit. He was now talking to her boss, Father Caspian, his bodyguards seeming on high alert as they scanned the room. Her eyes flitted cautiously to the visitors as she snuck a quick peek.
The guards didn’t keep her interest much, but the man in the middle did. He was wearing a fine gray suit with a light, baby-blue dress shirt hiding underneath. The way the fabric clung to his frame, and his perfect gentlemanly stance, gave him a regal quality that made her heart flutter.
The visitor had turned many heads since he arrived. She wasn’t sure who he was and wondered if he was one of the donors for the project.
Cocking her head to the side, Addison glared at her work. But it wasn’t because she was angry, but because she was analyzing it. The patch near her was now brightly colored. The face of a woman had been revealed by her hand, a cold, distance stare in the woman’s eyes as Addison brought life to the ancient piece.
She could sense someone approach, Addison slipping out her earbuds when he took the seat next to her. She sent him a shy smile, as she looked downward. It was the handsome man she had been eyeing.
She observed her work with him, her hands neatly in her lap. “What do you think?”
“It’s very good.” She recognized the voice. It was her friend, Christian. This was a very good surprise. He sent her a knowing grin. He held out his hand. “Nice to finally meet you in person, Addison.”
“You, too, Christian,” she said softly. She narrowed her eyes on her work. “Do you think the blue is too overpowering in her scarf? It matches the color on the printout, but….I don’t know. I think it may need tweaking. What do you think?” Reaching to her side, she snatched the paper that lay there, showing him. It was a rough, colored depiction of how the painting should look when finished.
“I think it should be slightly more teal in hue, and the veil a lot lighter than her dress. Let’s test the color against your skin and see how it’d look against hers.” He took her hand and curled his fingers into her palm, his grip light. He plucked her brush gently from her fingers.
Dipping her brush into the paint on her mixing board, he gathered some blue and smeared it on the surface of her skin. He added a hint of white, lightening the color. “Better, don’t you think?”
She shied from his eyes, his hands warm, and making her cheeks flush red. She took her brush as she whispered sweetly, “That’s a bit on the light side, I think.” She smeared a bit of blue onto her skin, the color changing slightly.
“Ah…a subtle change, but I think it makes a difference.” He looked at her hand, then to the painting. His eyes narrowed on the woman’s face as if thinking hard about it. “And there, near her eyes, it should be darkened just a hair. The way you have her depicted is too soft, you need to age her a bit.”
Addison’s eyes darted over the piece and she made a mental note of his suggestions.
“But, otherwise, I think it looks amazing.” He picked up a damp cloth and wiped away the paint on her hand. Her eyes ticked to his, her breath quickening a bit. When her skin was clean, he wiped at the tip of her nose. He chuckled softly at his words. “I have heard that an artist who wears her art shows great dedication to the craft.”
Addison licked her lips nervously as she tried to find her voice. He had her very flustered. “Thank you.”
“You seem to have more here, as well,” he said softly. He wiped at her cheeks, Addison now staring into his eyes. They were a crystal blue that sparkled under the lights and were set off by dark lashes.
Struck, she tried to calm her racing heart, the tension between them thick. Her feelings wore on her face, as she felt the heat pumping through her flush her cheeks, every inch of her seeming like it was burning.
“Like unveiling a hidden underpainting, to reveal your beauty is like finding one of the world’s greatest treasures.” With his words, he tapped her nose with the cloth, then wrapped her hands around it. “Brilliant work, Addison. I cannot wait to see the final piece.”
“Thank you,” she whispered. He hadn’t let go of her hand, their gaze locked as she fisted the cloth. Her heart was racing as she took in deep, quick breaths. She was struck, and from his flirty gaze, she hoped he was too.
“I can see why so many people speak so highly of you.” He cupped his hand over their joined hands, sandwiching her hand between his. She felt the heat that passed between them, the tension thick and causing a fog around her. She swore time had stopped, this moment belonging only to them.
He moved closer, Addison watching his lips form the words as he whispered. “Not only do you captivate me with your art, the sweetness that radiates from you has trapped me. If this moment is a dream, then never wake me. For I never want to take my eyes off the most beautiful creation God has ever created. Now that we share the same breath, and I see you in the flesh, you are better than any vision I had conjured of you—perfection greater than any painting.”
Addison couldn’t speak and had been struck by this silver-tongued prince. He had her reeling, her eyes watering a bit as she tried to stop the great emotion deep inside her that this man evoked.
He chuckled lightly. “Even the great Master Vallore would feel the same way if you met you, I bet.”
Shying from his eyes, she bit her bottom lip, putting a wrinkle in her shy smile. “Well, he does like some ugly art.”
Letting out a hearty laugh, Christian shook their joined hands a few times before releasing her fingers. “That’s not what I meant.”
“I’d rather not be in his sights anyway.” She fidgeted with the cloth, her answer soft. Her eyes fell on his hands, the large watch around his wrist catching the light and sparkling. It appeared to be inlaid with diamonds, the band a crisp silver. “I’m not a fast runner.”
He moved closer, putting his hand on her knee. She felt a rush of heat move up her leg, to her bottom, and up her belly. Everything tingled under his touch, Addison feeling light headed. He whispered, “I am.”
“Maybe I should be worried about your intentions, as well.” Now, only a few inches from his face, Addison whispered back. She captured his wicked gaze, sending him a flirty smile. “Runners are not good men to play with.”
“I’ll carry you to the finish line if you can’t reach it, sweetheart.” He squeezed her knee. When he smiled, she saw he had a flaw. He had big teeth, kind of like a horse. She stared at them for a bit, his abnormally big overbite catching her off guard. They looked unnatural at this distance.
She turned back to his eyes and quickly overlooked this imperfection. “Even if I make it five steps into the race and fall on my ass?”
“I’d carry you the whole race and we’d still win.”
Addison started to laugh and covered her lips with her hand.
Beginnings is free this week. If you haven’t read my Nightwalkers series yet, this book is a great intro to it. Go check it out
For those of you waiting for the release of my new Christian’s Kisses Series, here’s a little teaser quote from Christian 😉
Yay! I finally get to share this with you all. I’m so excited! This is the trailer for Prince, my first release with Hartwood Publishing. It will be debuting in December 🙂