If you want to check out the rest of the excerpts, you can check out the list here:
Without further ado, I give you my excerpt of Through the Fire:
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I was partly expecting the cab to pull up in front of a dilapidated warehouse like the one he’d stayed in while we were in Charlotte, but instead we stopped in front of a beautiful Sheraton. The lobby was housed in a separate colonial style building with massive arched windows that faced the road. A warm yellow light flooded out through the wide openings, casting a glow over the perfectly manicured gardens.
“Wow!” I exclaimed quietly.
The rest of the hotel rose from behind the front building, but it mostly blended into the inky night sky.
“You like it?” Clay asked.
“Like it? It’s beautiful.” I didn’t even bother to ask how much a room cost per night, because it was likely to be more than I could afford—especially after wasting precious funds on the other expensive room that would no longer see any use. I had no idea where Clay got the money for it, but then again when he’d left me in Charlotte, he’d left a few thousand with me as if it meant nothing.
“Then let’s head inside,” Clay said before throwing some money at the driver. By the time we were safely ensconced in the hotel elevator, my feet were aching and my body was tense from excess energy. I rested against the mirrored wall and closed my eyes to try to recover from the massive shift that had occurred in my life over the last twenty-four hours. When I opened my eyes, he was watching me carefully.
“I have something to admit,” he said when he realized I was looking at him.
“It’s silly, but I booked this room with the hope that you’d be with me tonight.”
“Why’s that silly?”
“I hoped I could make good on a promise I made to you a long time ago.” His mouth broke into a wicked grin, but he refused to say anything more.
The elevator opened before I had a chance to coerce anything more out of him.
Once he’d led me to our room, I slipped off my shoes as I surreptitiously watched Clay’s movement.
“Home sweet home,” he said.
The words caused a grin to spread over my lips. I still couldn’t believe I was back with him again. It seemed surreal that against all odds I’d found him and, more miraculously, that he still cared for me. It was enough to make me deliriously happy. Although I did have some pressing concerns.
“Why are we waiting here anyway?” I asked. We’d only traveled as far as Wakefield—far too close to the action for my liking.
He stretched his neck from side to side before sliding off his jacket and hanging it over the back of a chair. As he moved, his white business shirt pulled taut across the sinuous muscles that ran across his back. Each of them rippled when he rolled his shoulders and neck. It was clear in the way he moved that he had as much tension roiling through his body as I felt twisting around mine.
I was ready to push all the questions and concerns out of my mind and run my fingertips over each of the tiny muscles on his neck. Or maybe my tongue.
Clay stopped the progression of my thoughts into actions when he answered my question. “As soon as they discover I’ve gone, they’ll go through the security tapes. It won’t take them long to realize you’re not as dead as they thought. When they work that out, they’ll expect us to run,” he said.
His reached his arm behind him; the flex of his biceps made me clench my thighs together. I longed to have his arms around me again, to have him pull me close and hold me tightly with his new strength.
“By the time they’ve figured out that we didn’t leave tonight,” he continued. “We’ll be long gone in the opposite direction. It will give us a better head start.”
It was only when I realized what he was reaching for that my focus shifted to the handgun, tucked into a holster, that rested low on his back. The sight both terrified and comforted me. Between the muscles that now formed his hardened body and the piece he carried, I was certain he was more than strong enough to protect me. He pulled the gun from the holster, an action that would have terrified me if anyone else had done it, but I felt inextricably safe with Clay.
As he set the gun on the table, I wondered how often he’d had to use it. I decided against asking—I wasn’t sure that I actually wanted to know. I was certain the number was higher than I could fathom. I tried to ignore the thought. I trusted Clay with my safety.
He turned back toward me, catching my gaze and offering me a quizzical expression in response to something he saw.
“You’re certain about that?” I asked, wanting to confirm that we were safe before turning myself over to the other needs that his actions had inadvertently sparked.
Reluctantly, I turned away from him, knowing that if I didn’t we’d never finish our conversation. I pulled off the wig he’d given me to wear. Releasing my hair from its ponytail, I tousled it with my fingers to make me feel a little more like myself again.
“I’m sure. Besides, we’ll be safe tonight. They’ll be too busy with the gathering to worry about us.”
A feeling of dread filled the pit of my stomach, wiping away all the desire that had built a second earlier. I was somewhat relieved that Clay couldn’t see my expression because I was certain he’d find it offensive. “What will they do to them?”
“They’ll do what the Rain always does—cleanse the world.”
Even though his answer had been what I’d expected, a violent shudder ripped through me, and I wished I’d done more to tell the girls in the bathroom to run. I spun back toward him as the dread twisted to something stronger. I jutted my chin out. “But that’s murder.”
“Witches aren’t people, Evie,” he said, stepping closer to me with a sad little smile.
Even though I knew he didn’t intend them for me, I bristled at his words. According to the Rain, I fell into that category too. Was I “not people” to Clay as well?