Hey! Guess what's coming out in just over a week!
If you guess the eighth Freya Snow book, you would be right!
If you haven't caught up on the series so far, I would advise doing so before reading ahead to the sample chapter.
Luckily for anyone needing to catch up, the boxset of books 1-3 is currently on sale for only 99c.
“We’re back,” Freya called as she got back to the apartment she and Alex were renting. It had only been two weeks, but after so long on the move, that practically made it home.
Alex grinned as she got out of the bathroom, her long, silky black hair still wet from the shower. She was wearing shorts and a tank top to combat the southern Spanish heat, and Freya was definitely not complaining, though she was slightly envious. Whenever she showed off that much skin, it just revealed how many scars she had.
“How did hunting for more car-sickness potion go?”
“We were successful,” Amber chimed in from beside Freya.
Amber, being a ghost, usually wasn’t visible to anyone but Freya, but after so long of it being just the two of them, Freya was now almost constantly extending her awareness of Amber to Alex as well.
Not that Amber was constantly around. She didn’t want to intrude on the couple. But every time they went somewhere new, she would help Freya find the local magical community so that she could get any supplies she needed.
“I also got burgers for lunch,” Freya said, holding up a plastic bag. “Have I mentioned how cool it is that you can get booze at McDonald’s in Europe?”
“Only every time we go.”
Freya pouted. “It’s not my fault. Do you know how long it’s been since I’ve had enough control over my powers to drink alcohol?”
Alex smiled, giving Freya a light kiss on the cheek before taking the bag. “I know,” she said.
“And that’s my cue to leave,” Amber said.
Freya smirked. “You’re just leaving so that you don’t have to watch us eat cheeseburgers when you can’t have any.”
“Even if I were alive, I wouldn’t be having a cheeseburger.”
Freya did a mock gasp. “Is this where we learn one of your terrible, deep dark secrets? Like - gasp - that you’re lactose intolerant? Or is that you’re vegetarian?”
“Neither,” Amber said with a wry look. “It’s not kosher.”
She disappeared at that, leaving Freya to nod at the empty space.
“Yeah okay, that makes sense,” Freya said, folding her arms and glaring at the empty space. “You know that you disappearing like that isn’t funny, right?”
Alex smirked at her girlfriend. “Yeah, but it’s exactly the kind of unfunny joke you would tell. How did you not realise you two were related?”
Freya shrugged. “I don’t know. I didn’t know what being related to someone was like before. I didn’t have a frame of reference.”
“No, I know, it’s just funny. I mean, you even look alike.”
Freya snorted. “Yeah, with my Elemental-green eyes and Demon-pale skin.”
Alex rolled her eyes. “I meant in the face.”
“Well, I’m face-blind, so there’s your answer there.”
“Plus, what do you mean Demon-pale skin? I’ve seen Demons with dark skin.”
“Huh... I guess you’re right. I suppose I just assumed. Caroline is pretty pale too.”
“Maybe you’re related to her as well.”
“Don’t even joke. Could you imagine if my life got that convoluted?”
“You say that as if it isn’t already,” Alex said with a smirk before biting her lip, glancing down. “So, hey, want to go down to the beach this afternoon?”
“Yeah, sure, I guess. Why?”
“Really? Because you look like you have a reason...”
Alex rolled her eyes once more. “Can you please just let me surprise you with something this once?”
“Okay, okay!” Freya said, lifting her hands in mock-surrender. “Beach it is.”
As far as places to watch the sunset went, Freya thought to herself, the Balcon de Europa wasn’t bad. Far from it, in fact. Just a year ago, that would have meant nothing coming from her. She’d never left England, and she had barely ever left the North-East.
The past year had changed that, as she supposed being on the run always would.
“You’re burning up,” Alex said as she came back to where Freya was standing, holding their drinks in her hand.
Freya frowned. Despite her paper white skin, she didn’t burn in the sun. When she looked down at her arms, however, she realised that that wasn’t what Alex had meant. Her arms were covered in faint flames that flickered gently across her skin.
“Oops,” Freya said with a sheepish smile. She had a habit of doing that in the direct sunlight sometimes. As if she wanted to join in with the sun.
“Do you need me to dampen your magic?” Alex asked.
Freya shook her head, the flames fading. “I think I’m finally getting the hang of these powers.”
Alex grinned at that. “That you are,” she said before leaning forward, capturing Freya’s lips in hers.
Kissing hadn’t been easy in the early days. Freya had been too liable to go up in flames. But after so many months, it took a particularly good lay for her to worry about setting Alex alight anymore.
When Freya pulled away, she linked her arm through Alex’s, turning back to the ocean to watch the sunset. Of course, it was setting over to their right, but the colour change over the ocean was still nice to watch.
“So,” Freya said, “we’ve been here a while. It must be getting time to move again.”
Alex nodded. “I was thinking that we could hit the road the day after tomorrow.”
“Where will we be going this time? Are we still heading east?”
Alex got a faraway look at that. “I’ve actually been thinking about that, Freya.”
Freya frowned a little at her serious tone.
“I am happy being with you, no matter where we are. I could stay on the move with you forever. But... I think I want something more.”
“Like taking the fight to the rest of the Enhanced.”
Freya bit her lip a little at that. “Alex... Do you really think we can take on an army on our own?”
“I’m not thinking of doing this on our own. I’m not convinced that all of the Enhanced are so gung-ho about restarting the War. I know I wasn’t. I don’t think any of my batch-siblings would be, either.”
“We met one of your batch-siblings, remember? He wasn’t exactly easy to convince.”
“But we did convince him.”
“So you want to try and contact him again?”
Alex nodded. “I can’t guarantee that the others will listen, but it might give us a starting chance. A chance to stop running from them. I mean, that rune Amber helped you craft stops the Council of Light from finding you, so we just need to stop the Enhanced and then...”
Alex took the hand that wasn’t linked through Freya’s arm, reaching into her pocket. Out of the pocket, she drew a small box.
Freya frowned. The box looked like... Well, it looked like the kind that jewellery came in. But neither of them really wore jewellery.
Alex flipped open the box, revealing a small diamond ring inside.
“Is that...?” Freya barely managed to whisper, her breath catching in her throat.
Was Alex really doing this?
Sure, they had run away together, but Freya hadn’t allowed herself to think more long-term than their next destination. Not when their enemies were so close behind.
“It’s a promise,” Alex told her. “A promise that we’ll stop the Enhanced, and then you and I can go wherever we want and stay put. We can have a normal, happy life together. Just you and me.”
Freya’s face heated up at that, and she wasn’t sure if it was a blush or flames, but she found that she didn’t care, she was too busy drawing Alex into her arms, holding her tight.
“I think I love the sound of that,” she eventually admitted.
Alex let out a relieved laugh at that as Freya pulled away, taking the ring and putting it on Freya’s finger.
“We’ll have to get you one,” Freya said.
Alex blinked, before laughing. “I didn’t think of that...”
Freya grinned at her girlfriend before wrapping her hands around her waist, drawing her close and kissing her. Alex wrapped her own hands around Freya’s sides, gasping a little at the ferocity of Freya’s kiss.
Freya never wanted the moment to end.