Devil’s Cove cowers in the dark shadows of an abandoned manor, shrouded in horror and spoken of only in the faintest of whispers.
Captain Devlin Limmerick knows its secrets, keeps them hidden with his own. Feared as ‘The Devil’ on the high seas, he is lured to the manor by an unquenchable thirst for revenge. It is a thirst matched only by his hunger for the powerful medium he has coerced to aid him. Her presence at the manor invites strange, inexplicable happenings, forcing him to believe nothing is as dead as it seems. Especially his heart.
Blinded from youth and touched with an ability to communicate beyond the grave, Grace has been both feared and revered by the uneasy town folk. Yet she is powerless against the unrest brewing within the manor walls and finds herself wickedly drawn to the Devil’s darkness. Still, she refuses to sacrifice her soul to set Devlin’s unspeakable plans in motion.
In the throes of passion and danger, their skills will be tested beyond any foe they’ve ever fought, and not a single soul is safe. The only way out is deep within … if they dare to believe.
The carriage barreled along the gravel path at an alarming speed, its four spoked wheels devouring small stones under the weight of the conveyance. Grace had never had the pleasure of riding in such rich travel accommodations, and she would’ve enjoyed the experience if not for the dread blooming in her heart over reaching their final destination.
After some time passed in silence, the seat cushion beside her squeaked as Brother Anselm shifted his weight, presumably to peer out the window. “The mansion wants only a moat and a drawbridge,” her mentor said. “Then the picture would be complete. Something out of Grimms’ Fairy Tales to be sure.”
Grace leaned closer into his side and smiled in spite of the fact that he confirmed her worst fears about Devil’s Cove Manor. He always did enjoy a scary story.
Captain Limmerick emitted a dry laugh. “You believe in witches or the big bad wolf, then? I’m sorry to hear it. You’ll not survive long in the manor. Perhaps you prefer to stay closer to your almighty God in the chapel?”
“Do not be unkind,” Grace lashed out. “Brother Anselm has faced far worse than witches and wolves. I assure you we both have. Isn’t that the reason you sought my services tonight?”
“Something like that,” the captain replied. “Pray tell, Miss Grace, what exactly does 100 pounds get me? For that price I should expect a meeting with the devil, at the very least. Or perhaps the gatekeeper to Hell?”
Grace sat up straighter, unfazed by his taunts. He was barbaric for attempting to alarm her, and stupid, too, if he truly required her services. But if he wished to tease her, then two could play at his game.
“Who believes in fairy tales now? Can we expect a visit from the neighboring prince bearing a glass slipper?”
The captain’s amused chuckled filled the cabin. “That would require a ball first. I’ll see what I can do about that.”
Grace snorted and pulled her cloak tighter around her, warding off the sudden chill racing up her spine. Balls held no allure for her, and she was tired of sparring with the captain. She hunkered down in her seat, tapping her feet to promote blood flow to her frozen toes.
A foreign creaking sound filled her ears for a brief moment, and then the captain cleared his throat. “Take this blanket,” he said, placing it in Grace’s hands. “The nights grow cold in fall. We’ll be home soon, then you can warm yourself by the fire.”
She accepted it with a curt nod and set the blanket over her legs, reveling in what little warmth it offered now; for soon they would arrive at the manor and she would face the cold reality of her greatest fears.
R.C. Matthews was raised in the Metro-Detroit area along with three sisters and a brother by deaf parents. Her father is a voracious reader and that gene lives on in all of his children. Now the reading gene is sprouting in her own two sons who love to read J.K. Rowling, Rick Riordan and may others. She enjoys traveling with her family (loving husband, two sons and a stepson), reading, down-hill skiing and playing board games with her family.