The Emily Chronicles
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
E-book: June 18, 2013
Print: June 3, 2014
ISBN: E-book 978-1-61921-587-0
ISBN: Print 978-1-61921-916-8
Number of pages: 272
Word Count: 55,711
Cover Artist: Kanaxa
She is honey to his throat…but one sweet taste could part them forever…
Banished from home while her husband adjusts to life as an immortal, blood-drinking chronicler, Emily Black is homesick, heartsick and struggling under the constant sensory barrage of a city drenched in ancient magic. When an old friend asks for her aid in solving a string of murders, she welcomes the distraction, despite the danger.
Justine Dubois is grateful for a seer’s help, and more understanding than anyone of Emily’s plight. As a guardian, Justine commands respect; as a woman, her magic is considered inferior. Together, they are determined to prove their worth to London’s magicians, starting with solving these murders—with maybe a bit of matchmaking on the side.
Long before he met his soul mate, Michael Black made a commitment to join the Order of St. Jerome. He will live forever, forced to watch the woman he loves age and die. As Emily hunts the murderer, Michael struggles to protect her. But if he loses control of his hunger, the greatest threat to her safety could be Michael himself.
Warning: Contains tortured soul mates, scheming faeries, vampire debauchery, deadly parasols, illicit blood-drinker relations, and adorable plot moppets.
Readers can receive 30% off the ebook of Poison in the Blood from the Samhain Store by using the coupon code POISON14 at checkout.
Normally stepping into a garden would soothe me, but we were still within London, where there was no comfort whatsoever. I looked up at the night sky and wished I were with Michael.
“You have the soul of an artist, Miss Rose. It is a rare gift.” Mr. Paris stroked my hand, and I tugged it free of his arm. I folded both hands before me primly and smiled.
“Again, that is very kind of you.”
“I consider myself a patron of the arts.”
“So you attend gatherings such as this often?” I asked.
“Of course. I am always on the lookout for new talent.”
“I see. Did you know Mrs. Harding?” I tried to examine his aura to determine his reaction, but his magic continued to be so overwhelming that my eyes watered. Mr. Paris must be unspeakably powerful, and I found myself both worried and intrigued. Perhaps he was a sorcerer? One who specialized in darkness?
“I did. Poor girl. What a terrible thing to have happened to her and her family… Tell me, are you working on a second collection of your work?” he asked, quickly changing the subject.
“I am, though I am afraid the subject matter is quite a bit darker.”
Mr. Paris smiled a predatory grin, and my pulse leapt with a thrill of fear. “I am not afraid of the dark, Miss Rose. Are you?”
He stepped closer, but I held my ground, studying him with a curious tilt to my head. “What are you?” I asked.
He blinked, startled. “I beg your pardon?”
“What sort of magic do you practice?” I clarified.
“Oh. I am a librarian, of course,” he replied, and I laughed, unable to help myself. “What’s so funny?”
“You are most certainly not a librarian. Do people truly believe that lie?”
The smile slid from Mr. Paris’s face as his expression hardened. He stepped forward and tried to grab my arm, but Miss Dubois was suddenly between us, a shining silver blur. With a snarl he turned and ran, and the guardian chased him out of the garden and into the street.
Uncertain of what to do, I followed. I stood hesitant at the garden gate, wondering which way they went. My vision shifted, and I followed Miss Dubois’s blazing footsteps. I paused next to a blur traced over the high brick wall of another garden. It was another magical doorway, rather like the one I had discovered near Mrs. Harding’s body outside the Undiscovered Country. Foolishly I raised my hand to touch it, despite knowing full well that doing so could trigger another vision, but a hand emerged from the brick wall and grabbed my wrist.
Overwhelmed with shock, I barely managed a strangled gasp as Mr. Paris stepped through the wall and glared down at me. “Who are you?” he demanded.
“You first.” My voice trembled, and Mr. Paris grinned. He tightened his grip and snapped several small bones in my wrist, and I screamed.
“Who are you?” he repeated.
Something bubbled up within me, a bright plume of prophetic magic that became my answer. “I am your end.” That time my voice did not tremble at all, but was filled with terrible certainty. I would cause Mr. Paris’s death, and I knew it with as much confidence as I knew the sun would rise in the morning.
Something in my gaze must have worried him, because he snarled. Scowling, he grabbed my forearm with both hands and twisted. The bone snapped like dry kindling, and I screamed again. Before he could torment me further Miss Dubois arrived and bashed him with a round silver shield. Mr. Paris vanished into thin air, and the guardian stood near me. One arm bore the shield, while in her other hand she held a sword. How cunning of her. I wanted a sword as well.
“Are you all right?” she asked.
My knees wobbled and began to buckle, but then two dark blurs streaked up to us, and I was suddenly swept from my feet and cradled close in Michael’s arms.
“Darling! What happened?” he asked.
“You caught me.” I blinked—however had he moved that fast? Simon sighed and shook his head at his student, and I sensed that Michael and I were both in for a scolding.
“Of course I did. I will always catch you. Are you all right?”
Thanks for having me today!
My birthday is approaching and my first thought was to do a top ten list of my favorite birthday cakes. But drooling on my keyboard isn’t helpful to typing, so I decided to go with a sugar-free topic instead. ;)
I love writing Emily, so much so that I gave her her own series, The Emily Chronicles. The print edition of Poison in the Blood includes the introductory novella The Importance of Being Emily (it’s 2 books in 1!), so here are my Top Ten Favorite Emily quotes from both stories.
10. “Or perhaps there was an insane alchemist in our midst, stealing the blood of defenseless girls to be used in some diabolical potion… How exciting!”
9. Shivering, I rubbed my arms above the tops of my gloves. Without a word Mr. Black removed his coat and draped it over my shoulders. It was warm, but it also carried a strong impression of him—his thirst for knowledge, his dedication to his studies and his loyalty to his mentor. The corners of my mouth twitched as I pictured him as a very tall Labrador dog.
8. The men watched me closely, as though they expected Mr. St. Jerome to snap his bonds and devour me like a sweet peach before anyone could intervene. Instead he continued to sit, serene and unaffected, as I dabbed at the sluggish trickle of blood. It looked wrong somehow, too dark, a reminder that he wasn’t quite normal. Unliving, as Michael would be in a few short months.
7. “My apprentice speaks very highly of you, Miss Wright, and quite often.” Mr. St. Jerome peered at me, and though I felt a chill from his gaze, my heart soared at the idea that Michael spoke of me often. “I must admit, I have not met a seer in many years. The last one I knew served as an advisor to the king of France. He was a very powerful man.”
His words made me feel small, but I squared my shoulders. “I’m sure he was. My work may be more domestic, but it is important to those I have matched.”
“I suppose a woman would consider romance a worthy goal.”
“I suppose a man would belittle its worth,” I retorted hotly.
6. My senses brushed against his as easily as our lips did. I caught a flash of a memory of the two of us sharing a quiet moment together at a previous gathering, and the impression of how much he enjoyed speaking with me. Mr. Black thought I was beautiful, and he had wanted to kiss me for a very long time.
5. “It appears that there has been another murder. There is a carriage waiting for you.”
A murder? Another implied more than one as well. How interesting.
4. Miss Dubois nodded. “I understand. Perhaps too well. Mrs. Black, I think you and I will accomplish great things together.”
I smiled, blushing with a sudden swell of pride. Great things. Wouldn’t that be marvelous?
3. I tried to imagine the expression on Simon and Michael’s faces if they had known where I was at the moment. What was worse than fury? Seething rage?
2. “I apologize if I am late. These poor lost chroniclers were wandering about my sister’s foyer, and they followed me like stray puppies.”
1. I eyed him with surprise, for I had been expecting another lecture instead of what was a very reasonable proposal. Perhaps we had come to a turning point in our relationship after last night’s revelation—or perhaps I was still dreaming, for a world where Simon St. Jerome was reasonable, pleasant and good with small children was surely the stuff dreams were made of.
Robyn Bachar was born and raised in Berwyn, Illinois, and loves all things related to Chicago, from the Cubs to the pizza. It seemed only natural to combine it with her love of fantasy, and tell stories of witches and vampires in the Chicagoland area. As a gamer, Robyn has spent many hours rolling dice, playing rock-paper-scissors and slaying creatures in MMPORGs.