QSFer Xenia Melzer has a new MM fantasy book out:
All is fair in love and war. By now, Renaldo has found out the hard way how utterly stupid this statement is once you’ve met your match. And Casto won’t give an inch in their ongoing war for love.
After a tumultuous start to their relationship, Renaldo and Casto seem to have finally reached calmer waters. But just when Renaldo starts getting comfortable and thinks he can relax, things get out of hand again. His old enemy, the Good Mother, is dangerously close to defeating the divine brothers by reaching out to what is most dear to him. Casto still clinging to his stubborn pride is all the plotters need to drive him and Renaldo apart. Burdened by the secrets of his past, Casto fights with everything he’s got not only to save his life, but also to secure his future happiness. Facing the destruction of everything they have built together, Renaldo and Casto must choose between pride and love.
Gods of War Book II
DAMON WAS alert when he entered the shady shed. Elwan and Sindal, the two former overseers, who’d hated Casto ever since their degradation, approached him slowly. The priest couldn’t suppress a satisfied smile. Those men’s hatred wrapped around his shoulders like a warm cloak.
“Damon, what do you want?” Elwan was terse. It was late, and they still had some work to do.
“I wanted to see how you’re doing.”
“Don’t be ridiculous. You’re not interested in anybody besides yourself. You’re here because you need something, so spill.”
“Elwan, I can’t say I’ve missed your bluntness. But if you must know, I need your help. You do know Casto, don’t you?”
Sindal spat out, “As if you don’t know. What do you have to do with him?”
“Well, I guess you could say I’d like to teach him a lesson.”
“Forget it. We’ve already tried, and look where it got us.”
Elwan sounded gruff, so Damon treated him to a bright smile, which didn’t fail to annoy the slave. “That, my friend, is because you two are as dumb as the day is long. I, on the other hand, have a perfect plan.”
A dangerous glint sprang to life in the men’s eyes. It hadn’t been a wise move on Damon’s part to disgrace them, but he hadn’t been able to withstand temptation. Now he could feel their hatred bubbling up, swallowing their every sensible thought. It was exactly how Damon preferred his minions—easy to manipulate because they were oblivious to everything else around them.
“And what kind of plan do you have in mind?” Elwan sounded sly, on edge.
“It’s easy,” Damon said soothingly. “I want you to see to it that Casto gets delayed tomorrow noon.”
“No chance. He’s always punctual for training.” Elwan had immediately understood what Damon was aiming for, a fact that didn’t escape the priest. As much as the former overseer was consumed by hatred, he wasn’t stupid.
“It has to be something pressing. Something he can’t ignore. He’s still riding that brown mare, Nirena, isn’t he?”
“The loopy one? Yes. Although not even the Holy Mothers understand why.”
Damon acknowledged the answer with an innocent smile. Finally his constant surveillance of the blond pest would pay off. “What would happen should she escape from her stall? Of course, it would be an unfortunate accident, but once she’s outside….”
“Casto will try to get her personally.” Elwan grinned broadly. “That we can arrange.”
“So I can count on you?”
Sindal and Elwan shared a long glance. From their own painful experience, they knew what kind of risk they were about to take. Because one thing was for sure, should the Angel of Death ever find out about this, they would be denied a quick, merciful death. But the hatred burning in their chests enticed them to give in to Damon’s plan.
They hesitated for one more moment, and then they nodded. “Yes.”
Damon bowed to the two slaves in mockery. He hadn’t thought they would deny him, but he was still surprised how easy it had been to win them over. “It’s a pleasure to do business with you.”
Xenia Melzer was born and raised in a small village in the South of Bavaria. As one of nature’s true chocoholics, she’s always in search of the perfect chocolate experience. So far, she’s had about a dozen truly remarkable ones. Despite having been in close proximity to the mountains all her life, she has never understood why so many people think snow sports are fun. There are neither chocolate nor horses involved and it’s cold by definition, so where’s the sense? She does not like beer either and has never been to the Oktoberfest—no quality chocolate there.
Even though her mind is preoccupied with various stories most of the time, Xenia has managed to get through school and university with surprisingly good grades. Right after school she met her one true love who showed her that reality is capable of producing some truly amazing love stories itself.
While she was having her two children, she started writing down the most persistent stories in her head as a way of relieving mommy-related stress symptoms. As it turned out, the stress relief has now become a source of the same, albeit a positive one.
When she’s not writing, she teaches English at school, enjoys riding and running, spending time with her kids, and dancing with her husband.