A Damned Novel
Release Date: April 2017
All things truly wicked start from innocence.
Being a demon isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
Especially when you make a massive mistake your first month on the job.
Even more so when your sister is one of the all-star players on the other team.
Add in the rumors of not one but two coups and it’s not hard to see—something wicked this way comes….
“How can I help you, ma’am?”
“Did you just call me ma’am?” Abby blinked once before breaking in to peals of laughter. “You did. Oh, aren’t you just adorable?” She waved away my answer before I could offer it, continuing to laugh for another moment before sighing and shaking her head. “You almost distracted me from why I’m here.”
“My punishment.” I nodded, already resigning myself to my fate. “Okay. Let’s hear it.”
“I need you to be watchful.”
“I beg your pardon?” It was my turn to blink and frown, not quite able to hide my confusion. “I’m not sure I follow.”
“There have been… rumors.” She paused and I realized, with no small degree of shock, her hesitation was real and not for show. “I wouldn’t call them disturbing, not yet, but the potential is there.”
“Rumors about what?” When she didn’t answer right away, I bit the inside of my cheek to keep sighing in exasperation. Every time I thought I was finished with secrets and lies, something happened to prove me wrong. “You have to tell me what I need to watch for otherwise it’s pointless.”
“There are some of Lilith’s girls who are… unhappy with the way she’s running her business.” Abby uncrossed and recrossed her legs, her expression growing serious. “It isn’t the first time people have been upset but there’s something different this time around. Something which has Morning Star… concerned.”
“And you want me to deal with it?” I couldn’t hold back my bark of laughter. “I’m sorry but anything which worries the ruler of Hell is probably more than a little out of my league.”
“Which is why you’re not being tasked with solving the problem merely observing and reporting back.” If her patience grew any more exaggerated there was a good chance she would choke on it. “Surely that isn’t outside of your range of expertise.”
“No, but it’s not as if I associate with anybody other than Lacey.” I paused. “Or Asmodeus.”
“Then you should see about changing that, hmm?” She stood, drawing the panels of her coat together before tying the belt in a precise, deliberate knot. “My understanding is you’ve had a few disagreements with Kelly. Maybe you should take the high road and bury the hatchet.”
“Right.” I stared at her, certain she was telling me something but not sure what, exactly, it was. “Any other people I should cozy up to?”
“I’m sure Asmodeus is going to send an emissary to plead his case. It will, more than likely, be Cam.” Her smile was once again cool and lovely and very, very calculating. “Again, I know the two of you aren’t on the best of terms. Perhaps you should see what you need to do in order to make amends.” Her smile widened a fraction of an inch. “I’m sure you have a great deal of practice at manipulating men to do what you want.”
“Some.” I stood, clasping my hands at my waist and pasting on what I hoped would be considered a pleasant, accommodating smile. “And when would you like for me to report to you?”
“Let’s see in one week—that’s a few days after Lilith takes up the collection, which should give you time to have a few drinks with a few different people.” Abby’s smile slipped in to something which seemed almost genuine. “I’ll confess, I expected you to push back a little harder. I’m happy to see you don’t have nearly the same problem with authority as your sister.”
“Joanne? Problem with authority?” I snorted out a laugh. “Are we talking about the same woman?”
“I think once you truly learn who your sister is, you’ll be as surprised as she was.” Abby lifted her brows and gave me a slight nod. “In a week, then.”
I waited until the smell of brimstone dissipated before dropping back to the sofa, my legs suddenly more than a little weak. Resting my elbows on my knees, I cradled my face in my hands, taking long, deep breaths.
What the hell had I gotten myself in to?
About the Author:
L.M. Pruitt has been reading and writing for as long as she can remember. A native of Florida with a love of New Orleans, she has the uncanny ability to find humor in most things and would probably kill a plastic plant. She knows this because she's killed bamboo. Twice. She is the author of the Winged series, the Plaisir Coupable series, Jude Magdalyn series, the Moon Rising series, and Taken: A Frankie Post Novel.