Copyright © 2009 Lexxie Couper
All rights reserved — a Samhain Publishing, Ltd. publication
Earth calendar 2445
Torin Kerridon walked down the rubbish-strewn street, studying the derelict buildings, stunted fauna and polluted sky. So, this is Earth.
He curled his nose, moving his right hand closer to his disruptor. He didn’t expect anyone to attack him—he doubted anyone still living on the once-prosperous planet was healthy enough to pose any threat—but that didn’t mean he relaxed his guard.
You relaxed your guard, you died. That was the way of the Sol.
Besides, somewhere on this forgotten hunk of dying rock was a warrior of supreme force and skill. A warrior more deadly than the entire Sol Order combined. Even if he didn’t know it yet.
Stepping over a fallen tree, the leaves long dead, the branches withered and twisted as though tortured, Torin scanned the immediate area. The Old Seer had sworn the One Who Burns could be found somewhere in this vicinity. He’d been quite adamant about it in fact, almost having an apoplexy when Torin had voiced his doubt.
The old man had refused to listen to reason and, invoking the Sol Edict, had commanded Torin leave P’helios immediately for the abandoned planet.
Casting a dubious look at the closest building, boarded-up windows doing little to hide its desolate decay, Torin shook his head. The Old Seer was never wrong. If he said the One Who Burns was here, he was here. Somewhere. The southern hemisphere of the planet had survived the Third Global with the least destruction, the planet’s ailing weather patterns saving it from the initial bio detonation. Torin looked up at the sky and scowled. Polluted storm clouds boiled and rolled above him. The Old Seer had drawn the constellation under which Torin would find the One Who Burns, sightless eyes staring at the parchment as he’d inked the angled five-starred cross. The map however was useless.
Returning his attention to the buildings around him, Torin continued forward. He didn’t need to see the stars to know he was in the correct location. The sensors on his ship, Helios Blade, indicated a significant number of life signs in this quadrant. The only sign of life on the eastern coastline of the large landmass to be exact—a paltry four hundred and forty-two souls. According to the Old Seer, the One Who Burns was among them.
Torin frowned, looking at the empty, desolate dwellings around him. How are you going to find him, Kerridon?
He let out a silent grunt, his skepticism pushed further by his bleak surrounds. The Old Seer had told him the One Who Burns would find him, but he couldn’t help wondering how.
“The One will come to you. Walk through the streets of dismay with want in your soul, belief in your heart and the One will come to you. This you must do. Or the hearts of man will be—”
His proclamation had ended there. The Old Seer’s sightless eyes had rolled back into his ancient head, he’d hitched in a sharp breath and died.
Torin clenched his fist, the memory of his Sol guide’s death still jarring. The Old Seer had charged him with a task and he must obey. He was the last of the Sol Order. The last warrior charged with the protection of the Sun Sword, the ultimate weapon in the known universes. A weapon forged by the Immortals and discovered by the Oracle. A weapon created to end all life and begin it. He needed to find the one who was born to wield the blade before the False Fire did. If he failed, the worlds of man would cease to—
A ball of solid steel smashed into his chest, hurling him backward. His heels tripped, his feet tangled and, before he knew it, he was on his back staring at the bruised, polluted sky. Pain radiated through him. Syunna, what was that?
He flipped his body from the filth-strewn ground, disruptor drawn.
And found a tiny slip of a girl no taller than his chest standing before him, green eyes burning with golden fire, short black hair a spiky crown of mess. She glared at him, a long, rusted steel pipe clenched in her small fists. “Whoever you are, you’re not welcome here,” she growled, her voice husky. And angry. Very angry.
Torin frowned, resisting the urge to lift his hand and rub his chest. By the gods, what had she hit him with?
What do you mean_, she? Surely you don’t think this whelp put you on your arse, do you?
He returned his disruptor to its holster. “I have no issue with you, girl.” He began walking forward. “Move aside before I put you across my knee and—”
She threw herself at him. Feet first.
Her bootless heels struck his gut like two small balls of steel. He stumbled again, dumbstruck.
She swung the pipe, smashing it against his jaw as he fell.
White agony detonated in his head. He let out a shout of rage and indignation. How could a scrap of a child move so quickly? And hit so hard?
Before he could contemplate the answer, she straddled his chest, the steel pipe rammed under his chin. Choking him.
She glared down at him, the fury in her eyes seismic. “I will not let your kind touch me again.”
Torin stared at her, teeth clenched. “I’m not going to touch you. Now get off me before I give you a damn good—”
She didn’t let him finish. Fear flooded her eyes, turning the rage there to icy terror. She smashed the pipe against his face, his jaw, his shoulders, her tiny body trembling, her face set.
Pain erupted in his head. He let out a shout, more of surprise than agony, and grabbed at her wrists.
She was quick.
He was quicker.
Before she could strike him again with that cursed steel pipe, he yanked her body forward, threw her to ground beside him and rolled on top of her, pinning her beneath his weight.
“Get off me!” she screamed, thrashing and bucking like a wild animal.
He dodged another attempted blow from her right hand, fighting to keep her wrists in his grip.
Syunna, she’s strong for a scrap.
“Get off, me get off me, get off me!”
Her scream grew louder with every word, her eyes wider and more terrified.
“Stop it!” he roared, smacking her wrists to the ground beside her head and staring down into her muck-smeared face. “I’m not going to hurt you.”
“Ha!” she barked. “I’ve heard that before. Right before one of your kind shoves his dick between my legs.”
Cold fury rolled through Torin. His gut clenched at the implication behind her words and he fixed her with a steady look. “I, Torin Kerridon, last command warrior of the Sol Order and keeper of the Sun Sword’s truth, swear I will never bring harm upon your body.” He relaxed his hold on her wrists. A little. “Nor shove my dick between your legs.”
She glared up at him, green eyes flashing golden chips of rage.
He loosened his hold a fraction more. “This is my word and I swear it to you on my honour.”
She stopped fighting against his weight, expression guarded. Wary. “I swear I will rip your dick off and shove it down your throat if you break your word.”
The words were full of promise and Torin didn’t doubt—if given the chance—she would be capable of doing just so. He frowned, his gut still tight. “What is your name, child?”
Her jaw bunched, defiant strength glinting in her unusual eyes, and she shifted beneath him. “I’m not a child. I’m almost twenty-one.”
Torin suppressed the urge to smile. Almost twenty-one made her a child by his reasoning, and by his own advanced age. “What is your name, child?” he repeated, the need to know growing heavy in his gut.
Green eyes glinted. “Kala Rei. Now get off me.”
But Torin couldn’t move. He stared down at the dirty, skinny girl, every muscle in his body locked frozen with disbelief, his heart a thumping beat, his blood roaring in his ears.
The name whispered by the Immortals. The name he’d known all his life.
The One Who Burns.
The Sun Sword
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Format: eBook & Print
Length: 200 pages
Published: November 17, 2009
She has the power to bring new life…or utterly destroy it.
Torin Kerridon, the last warrior from an ancient order, is drawn to an abandoned, dying Earth, where he finds a forgotten young woman. A woman forged by the Immortals to wield the ultimate weapon—the Sun Sword. A woman capable of commanding the power of the suns. A woman with no past and no memory, the body of an angel and the spirit of a demon. He will train her. Prepare her.
Hunted all her life, Kala Rei has endured more than one woman should. Sheer grit, and a dangerous skill with a lead pipe, are the key to her survival. But nothing threatens her sense of safety more than dominance-oozing Torin. He wants her, but not for what’s between her legs. For what he believes her to be—some ludicrous savior from some absurd prophecy. No matter…his offer to take her away from Earth is too good to refuse.
But when a savage desire begins to burn between them, both Torin and Kala are in danger—and so are the worlds of man.
Product Warnings: This book contains an ancient prophecy that can’t be denied, a brooding hero tormented by desire, a stubborn woman who hungers for his touch, a villain so vile you’ll want to kill him yourself and sex so hot it’ll melt the suns of the known universes…and then some.