QSFer Amelia Faulkner has a new MM paranormal book out:
Headstrong. Telekinetic. Pariah.
On the run from his family, Quentin d’Arcy has settled in San Diego with dwindling funds and the growing suspicion that his gifts might not be limited to telekinesis. When he meets a psychic who can control people’s actions with a few words, his comfortable life starts to unravel.
Demigod. Oracle. Hunter.
Laurence Riley almost died killing one god only to discover that he’s descended from another. Before he can come to terms with that revelation, Quentin’s twin brother walks into his life, and there’s no way to know what his motives may be.
With great power comes great danger.
Kane Wilson wants to make a better world: a world in which psychics are open about who and what they are without fear of reprisal or hatred. With the power to control others he might be able to pull it off, but there’s going to be collateral damage.
If Quentin and Laurence can’t get to the bottom of Wilson’s plan, Kane will out the existence of psychics not only to San Diego but to the world, and all hell will break loose.
Knight of Flames contains mature themes and events which may be distressing to some readers. It has a mild heat rating and an HFN ending.
Book Two of the Inheritance Series
Let’s give away a pair of paperbacks: Jack of Thorns and Knight of Flames. One pair to the lucky winner! :D Just comment below with your email for a chance to win!
It was only the second-worst day of Quentin’s life.
The worst was last week, when he found the body. Now he sat in stoic silence, eyes forward, the killer to his left and the innocents on his right, while a stream of well-wishers and onlookers passed the coffin to pay their respects.
The coffin was absurd, almost repugnant. It seemed preposterous that she could be in there at all. It was mahogany with brass rails along each side for the pallbearers to lift it by, but most of the thing was covered in cloth which bore her crest as the Duchess of Oxford, bright and colorful on such a dismal day.
His thighs hurt. The black fabric of his suit’s trousers was not enough to keep his fingers from digging into his flesh.
“Do not disappoint, Quentin.” His father remained motionless, and his voice was a low rumble. “Your mother would not wish for you to disrupt her service.”
He felt his fury ratchet up another notch. It burned deep in his core, hot and cold all at once, sucking the energy from his body, his thoughts, and his patience.
We would not be here if you had not killed her.
He daren’t say it, though. No. If those words spilled out of him, he would lose his self-control, and his mother deserved better. As much as he despised his father, the fact was that this was Mama’s funeral, and anything which had to be said could wait until she was peacefully interred in the family mausoleum.
The thought of that once-vibrant woman rotting away in catacombs turned the dial another notch.
“Icky,” Freddy whispered.
Quentin managed to swivel his eyes to the right and met his twin brother’s gaze. Frederick was only hours younger than himself, but where Quentin had inherited dark hair from their father, Freddy had lucked out with Mother’s blonde. They both had Father’s eyes, though: colorless, almost uncanny.
“Just get through this,” Freddy continued. “For Nicky’s sake.”
Quentin’s focus shifted. Beyond Freddy was Nicholas, their younger brother. Quentin and Freddy were nineteen, but poor Nicholas was six years behind them.
God, what an age to lose a mother.
The poor boy was struggling to maintain his composure, but he hadn’t the practice Quentin and Freddy held under their belts. The funeral was enough to fray the edges of Quentin’s nerves, but Nicholas was teetering on the edge, his eyes red-rimmed and bright and his cheeks pale in contrast.
Quentin looked to Freddy again, desperate to pull some strength from him. How could he be so damn calm, so collected?
Freddy inclined his head faintly. “Just one more hour, Icky,” he whispered. “That’s all I ask.”
Quentin gave the slightest of nods and returned his gaze to the coffin. The rage failed to subside, but at least—for now—it had stopped growing.
He had found her in her rose garden.
The weather was glorious, not a cloud in the sky, and he was home early from a day in London visiting with friends. Freddy was off at university on the first year of his studies, but Quentin was too thick for university and so hadn’t even applied.
She loved her roses. She tended them every day, even if only to pluck away the occasional dead leaf. Father often argued that it was a task for the gardeners, but she wouldn’t allow them near her garden. It was her space.
He found her on the ground, and at first he thought perhaps she had just fallen. But she was so pale. So ashen.
He knew that she was dead.
It was a ball of ice in his gut, that knowledge. For all that he ran to her and tried to wake her, he knew that she was cold and empty. The pallor of her skin was like nothing he had ever seen on a living person.
Living people weren’t gray.
He had no real grasp of what occurred after that. Father claimed one of the staff heard him scream and sent for an ambulance, but Father was a liar. All Quentin knew was that he didn’t sleep that night.
The priest was talking.
Quentin blinked and struggled to pay attention. The stream of people going past had ended, and now some religious figurehead was making long-winded statements about how beloved the Duchess was. Quentin wasn’t at all sure whether the man were a priest, a vicar, or what. Were there distinctions? Did they matter? He’d always found religion frightfully tedious, but that left him somewhat bereft of information at this juncture. All that seemed to matter was that a man Quentin didn’t know was making sweeping statements about a woman he probably didn’t know, regardless of how often they may have met.
The rage had not abated.
Through the droning speech and the infrequent sniffs from Nicky, it burned white hot. Now and then Freddy squeezed his wrist and it dragged him into the present, but more often than not his mind had wandered away to happier times. Times filled with laughter and smiles.
Father stood and approached the podium, and Quentin gasped as that darkness left his side. It sharpened his senses, nailed them to the here and now, as the one thing in this world he could truly say that he despised stood before them all and presented the façade of a man grieving for the loss of his beloved wife.
“Icky,” Freddy whispered. “Hold.”
The world began to blacken at the edges, blotting out as though a vast emptiness consumed it. Radiant in the center of his vision stood the Duke of Oxford, tall and flawless, his hair peppery at the temples and his forehead deeply lined with sincerity.
This man was their father, and that knowledge sickened Quentin.
“I have to go,” he breathed, so faint that he doubted Freddy heard him.
“Ten minutes,” Freddy hissed. “Ten bloody minutes.”
A stiff breeze whipped at his hair. It ruffled the edges of the banner draped across the coffin and tugged on the priest’s robes.
Now was a rotten time for the weather to be turning.
“Elizabeth was a dreamer.” His father’s voice was sonorous, and his gray eyes were fixed at some midpoint in the crowd. “The eldest of three sisters, heir to the Dovecote family’s legacy, and the most beautiful woman that I ever had the good fortune to meet. Mother to three sons of whom we could never have been more proud.” his gaze shifted to Quentin before it passed on to Freddy and Nicky.
The blackness encroached toward the podium. All other sound became muted, muffled, until there was nothing left of it. Just the abyss and Father’s award-worthy performance at the center.
Cold seeped through his clothes and caressed his skin. He felt as though he stood at the heart of a hurricane, gale forces ripping at his body.
Whatever Father said, it didn’t matter. It was a hum of nonsense now.
“You killed her,” Quentin said.
The hum ceased.
He knew that tone. The soft way in which it heralded his father’s disappointment.
It twisted the dial one more notch.
Wind rushed from Quentin’s lungs as the rage surged loose. “You killed her!” he screamed. “You liar! You killed her!”
Something took his arm, and he wrenched free, but it came back. He heard muted screams and wailing cries. They came from some distance away, reaching from the blackness.
“You’re a murderer!” His throat was raw from the yelling, but he couldn’t hear his own words over the howling of winds.
Then the abyss swallowed him whole.
Amelia Faulkner was born in the rolling green countryside of Oxfordshire, and moved to London once she was mostly grown up. She has a degree in Computer Science, and spent quite a long time working with computers until her childhood love of writing could no longer be ignored.
Since then she has written for corporate clients and personal pleasure, and finally stepped away from office-bound working in 2011 to freelance from home.
Amelia is also a keen photographer and film-goer, and resides in the city (not the City) with her husband. She is notoriously camera-shy.