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Excerpt: A Touch of Ruin by Scarlett St. Clair

 

A Touch of Ruin
Scarlett St. Clair
(Hades & Persephone #2)
Publication date: April 23rd 2020
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance

Persephone’s relationship with Hades has gone public and the resulting media storm disrupts her normal life and threatens to expose her as the Goddess of Spring.

Hades, God of the Dead, is burdened by a hellish past that everyone’s eager to expose in an effort to warn Persephone away.

Things only get worse when a horrible tragedy leaves Persephone’s heart in ruin and Hades refusing to help. Desperate, she takes matters into her own hands, striking bargains with severe consequences.

Faced with a side of Hades she never knew and crushing loss, Persephone wonders if she can truly become Hades’ queen.

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EXCERPT

Persephone took her wine and purse into the bedroom. Dropping her bag on the bed, she moved into the bathroom and turned on the shower. As the water heated, she sipped on her wine before setting the glass aside so she could unzip her dress.

She paused when she felt Hades’ magic surround her. It was a distinct feeling—a tinge of winter on the air. She closed her eyes and prepared to vanish. It wouldn’t be the first time Hades had taken her to the Underworld without any notice, but instead, a hand touched beneath her chin and lips closed over hers. He kissed her like they hadn’t made love into the early hours of the morning, and when he pulled away, Persephone was breathless, the stress of her day forgotten.

Hades palm was warm against her cheek, and he brushed her lips with his thumb, dark eyes searching.

“Troubled, darling?”

She narrowed her gaze, suspicious.

“You followed me today, didn’t you?”

Hades didn’t even blink. “Why would you think that?”

“You insisted Antoni take me to work this morning, most likely because you already knew what the media was reporting.”

Hades shrugged. “I didn’t want to worry you.”

“So you let me walk into a mob?”

He raised a knowing brow. “Did you walk into that mob?”

“You were there!” She accused. “I thought we agreed. No invisibility.”

“I wasn’t,” he answered. “Hermes was.”

Damn you, Hermes. She’d forgotten to extract a promise from the God of Mischief not to tell Hades about the crowd. He’d probably waltzed into Nevernight with a smile on his face to report what happened.

“You could always teleport,” Hades offered. “Or I can provide an Aeg—”

“I don’t want an Aegis,” she stopped him. “And I’d rather not use magic not…in the Upperworld.”

“Unless you’re exacting revenge?”

“That’s not fair. You know my magic has become more and more unpredictable. And I’m not eager to be exposed as a goddess.”

“Goddess or not, you are my lover.”

She didn’t mean to, but she wasn’t a fan of that word. She stiffened, and she knew by the way Hades’ eyes narrowed, he had noticed.

He continued, “It is only a matter of time before someone with a vendetta against me tries to harm you. I will keep you safe.”

Persephone shivered. She hadn’t thought about that.

“You really think someone would try to harm me?”

“Darling, I have judged human nature for a millennium. Yes.”

“Can’t you…I don’t know…erase people’s memories? Make them forget about all of this.” She waved her hand between them.

“It is too late for that,” he paused a moment and then asked, “What is so terrible about being known as my lover?”

“Nothing,” she said quickly. “It’s just…that word.”

“What’s wrong with lover?”

“It sounds so…fleeting. Like I am nothing but your sex slave.”

One corner of his lips curled. “What am I to call you, then? You have forbidden the use of my queen and my lady.”

“Titles make me…uncomfortable,” she said.

She wasn’t sure how else to explain why she’d asked him not to call her my queen or my lady, but it added up to the fact that they were two labels she could get used to, and that meant she was setting herself up for potential disappointment. The thoughts made her guilty, but the echoes of the heartbreak she’d experienced while they were separated made her cautious.

“It’s not that I don’t want to be known as your lover…but there has to be a better word.”

“Girlfriend?” Hades supplied.

She couldn’t suppress the laugh that tore from her throat.

“What’s wrong with girlfriend?” He asked, glowering.

“Nothing,” she said quickly. “It just seems so…insignificant.”

Their relationship was too intense, too passionate, too ancient for her to merely be his girlfriend.

But maybe that was just how she felt.

The tension eased from Hades’ features, and he drew his finger under her chin.

“Nothing is ever insignificant when it comes to you,” he said.

They stared at each other, and the air was heavy. Persephone itched to reach for him—to bring his lips to hers, to taste him. All she had to do was close the gap between them and they would ignite—fall so deep in their passion, nothing would exist beyond their skin.


Author Bio

Scarlett St. Clair lives in Oklahoma with her husband. She has a Master’s degree in Library Science and Information Studies and spends a lot of time researching reincarnation, unsolved murders and Greek mythology-all of which made it into her debut novel, When Stars Come Out.  Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Newsletter

 

 

 

 

 

 


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