Waking for Winter
Philadelphia Coven Chronicles
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Loose Id
Date of Publication: July 4th, 2017
The Philadelphia Coven has thwarted the Order of the Serpent’s every attempt to destroy their city only to draw out the scariest nightmare from the Otherworld, the Caoranach. One of the Coven’s own, Cami Akiyama, has already met this creature—the very monster who tortured her, branding her with a mark. Given Cami’s history with the big bad, the Coven leader assigns her a bodyguard, none other than the gorgeous and lethal necromancer, Dante Martinez, the ex-boyfriend she disappeared on years ago. One conversation confirms the spark between them never died, and based on the way Dante flirts, he won’t allow that flame to extinguish out without a fight.
No one has ever compared to Dante and the incendiary passion he inspired in her, but the Caoranach broke her—Cami’s too damaged for any sort of relationship. Not like that stops him. If anything, he fights harder for the memories of a love that kept her sane on the bleakest nights. And despite every effort to distance, she finds herself falling for him all over again. Except the Caoranach isn’t finished with her—the branded mark holds the secret to the city’s destruction or salvation, and Cami stands in the center of the storm.
“Let’s drown ourselves in coffee,” she responded, turning and making a beeline toward the shop, which had just opened. A film covered her skin, like she needed to scour herself clean for the thousandth time since the Caoranach had begun her visits, so maybe she was better off staying away from home for a bit. Her skin could use a rest after her last attack. She wrapped her hand around the curved door handle and tugged it open.
Yellowed lights beamed down as the hiss of coffee in the brewer and the aroma of freshly ground beans greeted her. She walked inside, and the burst of warmth traveled all the way to her toes as she quick-stepped over to the pastry case. A tired barista nudged her glasses up on her nose before leaning over the counter.
“Hey there,” the woman slurred, her voice thick with sleep. Cami peered into the display case while Dante swerved by her to order a plain cup of coffee. The strawberry crumb cake caught her eye at once; she loved the fruit to the point of addiction. She ordered it and a small cappuccino. Even with the barista’s yawns, she moved with a surprising efficiency, in mere moments dropping off a swirled cappuccino and the moist crumb cake while she exchanged the cash.
Dante leaned into one of the black, wire-rimmed chairs in the corner of the room, watching her with a smile that reached his eyes. She drew in a deep breath, wishing she could equip some sort of armor to disarm the magnetism of his smile and the way his gaze made her heart ache.
She took solace in her six packs of sugar to fill that hole as she stirred them into her cappuccino and carried her food over to where Dante sat.
“You’re going to get diabetes,” he commented, arching a brow at her drink.
“If sugar was going to kill me, I’d get the premonition. Might as well be some use to my shitty ability.” She fixed him with a glare before lifting her crumb cake to her lips and exaggerating her enjoyment to spite him.
Dante snorted in response.
“So,” she started in between chews. Dante lifted a brow. As rough and tumble as the necromancer appeared, he always got cranky about table manners. Which was great, because Cami relished any opportunity she got to annoy him. “When are we going investigating?” she asked, excitement winding through her system faster than caffeine. Alanna might be keeping her out of Coven field duty, but she could still do some legwork on her own. The Caoranach had already made her interest clear, so Cami wasn’t going to loiter around waiting for the next visit.
Dante took a sip from his steaming cup and shook his head with a smirk. “Thought you were an obedient good girl now.”
She shot him a look. “Dunno, I think stopping imminent evil from having its way with the city would earn me some good cred. Besides, when have I ever been obedient?”
Midsip of his coffee, Dante spluttered into the cup. Though his dark eyes glittered with amusement, his mouth grew serious. “Level with me though. Other folks can follow this lead, ones who haven’t been at this monster’s mercy. Are you okay enough to snoop around? Things could get real, fast.”
Cami sucked in a deep breath as she tugged on her pendant. The softness and care in his voice slayed her, and even if she wanted to puff her chest with bravado and pretend, she couldn’t hide her feelings for anything. “I’m scared as shit, D. I’m getting these spells where I freeze up, where my body’s paralyzed. What I’d love to do is just hibernate under my blankets for the next couple of months with Sirius and about a thousand books. But whether I like it or not, she’s taken an interest in me, and I’m connected to this. So yeah, I’ll step up to the plate.”
About the Author:
A modern day Renaissance-woman, Katherine McIntyre has learned soapmaking, beer brewing, tea blending, and most recently roasting coffee. Most of which make sure she’s hydrated and bathed while she spends the rest of her time writing. With a desire to travel and more imagination than she knows what to do with, all the stories jumping around in her head led to the logical route of jotting them down on paper. She writes novels with snarky women, ragtag crews, and guys with bad attitudes. High chances for a passionate speech thrown into the mix.