Tag Archives: Demon Interrupted

Demon Interrupted, the Novel, now Available on Amazon!

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I know I promised part two of Mr. Sands today, but I just have to take time out to crow about my new release! That’s right! Demon Interrupted, the continuation of the Lakeland Witches saga, is now a unified novel you can buy on Amazon!


Mr. Sands will continue tomorrow. 


Sometimes a secondary character in a novel I’m writing intrigues me so much that even  after the novel is finished, I can’t stop thinking about him or her. Most of you know that’s what happened with Wade Crittenden in the Executive Decisions series. He was just too intriguing not to revisit. The same is true with Ferris Ryder from the Lakeland Witches trilogy. From the moment he appeared on the scene in the second Lakeland book, Riding the Ether, capable of making himself completely unnoticed, while at the same time possessing amazing skills he has no idea how he got, I wanted to know what his story was, so I decided to do my first ever online serial, with a new episode of Ferris’ story coming out on my blog every three weeks, timed to finish on Halloween, as any good paranormal series would. It was my first aerial, but by no means my last.


And now, at last, Ferris and Elaine’s story will be coming out altogether, expanded and enhanced into a novel for Xcite Books. What started out as a serial and a novella is now the 4th book in the Lakeland Witches trilogy, and I can’t tell you how pleased I am and excited to make Ferris’ story available to everyone in eBook format.

Demon Interrupted Blurb:


Ferris Ryder has a choice to make. He can reclaim the past, which he now consciously keeps from his memories or he can let all that he fears to remember destroy the present and the Elemental Coven he has come to love. Has the mysterious Elaine come into his life to be his guiding angel or will she tear his world, and that of his coven family, apart?



xcite1DEMON INTERRUPTEDeditDemon Interrupted Excerpt:


In a room full of people Ferris could remain totally unnoticed. It was almost as though he were invisible. He heard things that way, saw things that others missed. Fiori suspected that was part of his magic. However, at the moment, he was completely and totally the centre of her attention as his warm, wet tongue teased its way down and around the pucker peaks and the rapid rise and fall of her breasts. One splayed hand cupped and fondled her tight pubic curls while the other worried open his fly. What he was doing to her body was also a part of his magic and way more of a surprise, considering the man’s unassuming nature, than his ability to blend in.


She writhed beneath him totally naked, just as she had been when he entered her room, gently easing her out of a bad dream, back into the Waking World, and into his arms. She didn’t know where he’d been before he came to her. The man seldom slept — and him not even a ghost. He might have adjourned to the library after the rest of the house had entered the Dream World, or perhaps he had been in Skye’s bed sharing pleasure with her and Alice. He was generous with his affections. But then he’d hardly fit in at Elemental Cottage if he were otherwise.


How he had known she was having the dream again? How had he known about the dream at all? And yet he did, and she was glad that he came to her. ‘Sh! sh. It’s only a dream, Fiori,’ he whispered. ‘Only a dream.’ He’d brought her a glass of water from the bathroom and had returned with a soft white towel. While she drank as though she had just traversed the desert, he gently wiped the perspiration from her face and her shoulders. Then he took the glass away and moved the soft terrycloth knap in slow lazy circles down her back and her ribs as she slid into his arms, laying her head against his shoulder.


‘Do you want me to stay with you?’ he asked.


She only nodded, tightening her arms around his neck.


His black shirt was open and untucked and his nipples hardened as she slid her arms inside and up his back.


‘Do you want me to make love to you?’ He asked it as simply as a parent would ask a child if she would like a bedtime story. He asked it because he knew in a house where sex magic was practiced, healing came in the form of passion, and she nodded again because she knew that too. His cock was already hard, but then she had noticed that it often was. In those times when he allowed attention to be drawn to himself, in those times when he made his presence known he neither attempted to hide his erection nor did he attempt to flaunt it. It was the ease and the comfort of which he wore his own masculinity that made him seem like a much larger man than he really was. In spite of his chameleon nature, he was not shy by any means, and his stamina and his finesse made him a welcome edition to the beds of all of the Elemental witches and their consorts.


Impatient for the feel of him freed, she shoved at his trousers, the scrape of the zipper seeming unusually loud in the quiet room. He ran his hand down to aid her as she worried his cock free. He was neither large nor small. Even his cock was nothing unusual to draw attention to itself, and yet there was no one at Elemental Cottage who didn’t relish the thought of Ferris between their legs, of Ferris shifting and grinding as though his unassuming penis had a secret magic all its own once properly sheathed in an appreciative pussy or mouth or arsehole.


His breath caught with a grunt as she fisted the length of him and she could almost feel the ripples of lust rising up the vertebrae of his spine. For a second he wrapped his hand around hers and shifted his hips. Then he pulled her fingers free, kissing each one of them, running his tongue in ticklish strokes over the tips, making her hips rock against the mattress. ‘I’m going to taste you now. I can already smell how good you’ll be.’ With a wriggle of his arse and a shove with his feet he shed his trousers as he crawled down between her thighs, nudging her open with the smoothly shaven wedge of his jaw, clearing the way with nose and lips, teeth and tongue. The humidity of his breath blew across her clit, which rose up in anticipation.


‘There,’ he said, his fingers parting her as agiley and exactingly as if he were a pianist and she were his instrument. For an age he studied her, fingered her, arranged her as though there were only one way, the best way to approach her dark, heavy folds, and he would not partake until he knew exactly what would bring all of her focus, all of her energy, all of her arousal to the very centre of his attention. ‘And now –’ his words were little more than a rush of breath ‘–I’ll give you what you need.’ He took her with his whole mouth, hunched over her like a lion at his prey, the muscles of his shoulders flexed tight, dusted and gilded in moonlight. And she felt the bloom of her arousal like a bud swelling, bursting, opening. Then the bloom became an explosion rising up from someplace suspended above the base of her spine. He held her hips, held her steady with strength his body belied as she bucked against his mouth, as she convulsed, as the moon moved in and out amid the undulation of slate clouds.


In the hazy vision of heat he seemed larger than himself, much larger than himself as though his arousal, their arousal together had released something broader of shoulder, deeper of chest, darker of memory and, as the moon disappeared, the power of him rose like a shadow thick and all-consuming and, somehow, other than himself. The hair on the back of her neck rose. Gooseflesh prickled over her breasts, even as she rocked out her orgasm against his mouth.


But before the tingle of uncertainty and the edge of fear could take hold, the moon reappeared and unassuming Ferris gave her clit on last hard tug with his lips and then rose over her, positioning himself, easing her open with his knees and his hips.


‘I need you in me,’ she said, her voice nearly lost in her struggle for oxygen.


‘A need which I share,’ came his urgent reply. It took no more than the tucking of his hips and a single thrust and he was in deep. She was slick and ready for him, gripping him as though she hadn’t just come, as though she were desperate for him to take her. With arms much stronger than they looked, he lifted her legs around his hips and castlerigg6positioned himself so that with each thrust he raked her clit, and she could almost swear that in the stark relief of moonlight and shadow his eyes were onyx black and yet bright, so bright. Even in the glow of a nearly full moon, he road her in the light of an after image that made no sense, and she was reminded that not even Ferris understood his own magic. The closer they both came to orgasm the larger and heavier the after image grew. And the larger the after image, the harder they strained for release. When orgasm broke over them, so did the shadow, consuming them for the briefest of moments and then receding behind their own efforts to recover themselves taking with it Fiori’s urge to speak of it, to question it.


Buy Link for Demon Interrupted:

Body Temperature & Rising Heats Up February for FREE!

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Looking for some hot paranormal erotica? Here’s a hot excerpt to remind you that Body Temperature & Rising, book one of the Lakeland Witches Trilogy, is now FREE to download and enjoy all through the month of February! Be sure to get yours and immerse yourself if the steamy, sizzling paranormal chills and thrills.

Body Temperature & Rising Blurb:

Book one of the Lakeland Witches trilogy (Click here for: Book Two | Book Three)

American transplant to the Lake District, MARIE WARREN, didn’t know she could unleash demons and enflesh ghosts until a voyeuristic encounter on the fells ends in sex with the charming ghost, ANDERSON, and night visits from a demon. To help her cope with her embarrassing and dangerous new abilities, Anderson brings her to the ELEMENTALS, a coven of witches who practice rare sex magic that temporarily allows needy ghosts access to the pleasures of the flesh.

DEACON, the demon Marie has unleashed, holds an ancient grudge against TARA STONE, coven high priestess, and will stop at nothing to destroy all she holds dear. Marie and her landlord, the reluctant young farmer, TIM MERIWETHER, are at the top of his list. Marie and Tim must learn to wield coven magic and the numinous power of their lust to stop Deacon’s bloody rampage before the coven is torn apart and more innocent people die.

Lakeland Witches 1 BTRBody Temperature & Rising Excerpt:

Marie cranked the water to cold and stood in the sluice of it until her teeth chattered, and still it was as though a million tiny pinpricks were alive just beneath the surface of her skin, as though Deacon were still reminding every single pore in her body how desperately she needed to come.

She was shivering uncontrollably when Anderson opened the shower door and shut off the water, ignoring the splash on his pristine white shirt. ‘It is enough, my love. I cannot allow you to catch your death.’ He bundled her into a huge blue towel and began to dry her goose fleshed skin vigorously. He tisk-tisked. ‘My dear, even I am warmer than you when I first take the flesh. This will never do.’

She tried not to writhe beneath his touch, but the misery of her need was overwhelming. Her lip trembled, and in spite of her best effort her eyes misted. ‘I wanted him, Anderson. Dear God, how could I want him?’

He lifted her open palms and placed a kiss on each where her nails had pierced her hands. ‘You have no idea what you have done, do you, my sweet Marie? Of course you wanted him. That is his magic, to make himself the most desired of all beings, to make his victims feel in their bodies hunger and lust for him like they have never imagined. Even Fiori, who is a powerful witch, not to be trifled with, gave in. But you did not. You banished him twice and remained free.’

‘Then why do I feel this way if I’m so special? I feel like I’m on fire, I feel like I’ll explode if I don’t … if I don’t get some relief. It disgusts me that it’s because of him, and yet still I want.’

‘Shhh!’ Anderson stopped her words with a light kiss. ‘My darling Marie …’ He wiped a single tear from her cheek and lifted her chin so that she met his dark gaze. ‘… There are many elements, many facets to sex magic. And that with which Deacon has afflicted you, he cannot now take back from you. It is now yours. And what is now yours, you may freely give to me, you may allow me to ease your need, as you did earlier when the situation was more desperate. In doing so, we may, together, transform it to pleasure and even something more powerful still.’ He kissed her palms again. ‘If you will permit me?’

‘Permit you? I beg you, Anderson.’

‘My love, it would never in a hundred lifetimes be necessary for you to beg love from me.’ He took her mouth deeply, tongue plundering, teeth nipping, lips insisting. He lifted her in his arms and carried her to the bedroom, where the bed had been mysteriously, perhaps magically, made up. There, he pulled back the duvet, kissing and coaxing her down onto the soft mattress.

His body was shades of silver and shadow in the moonlight, teasing her eyes with glimpses of the hard plain of his belly and the tight half domes of his buttocks. As he shrugged out of his clothes, the shape of him still remained vague and mysterious but exquisitely solid, substantial as he moved onto the bed next to her, his anxious cock leading the way. He dropped a wet, suckling kiss on each of her heavy nipples, and she arched her back and ground her arse against the clean sheets.

‘I think we must first give you some much-needed relief.’ He brushed a thumb solicitously against her bulging clitoris, and she whimpered and shifted her hips against his touch. ‘The seat of your pleasure is ripe with your desire,’ he said. ‘And I have such a fondness for ripe fruit.’ Still stroking the swell of her with his thumb, he slipped two fingers between her pouting labia and the catch of his breath mirrored hers as he gently probed and withdrew and probed again until he found her g-spot and she soaked his hand and nearly bucked off the bed.

He released a deep sigh. ‘You are as wet as the fells in heavy dew, and the feel of you makes my own need almost more than I can contain.’

‘Please,’ she moaned. ‘Please …’

He lifted her on top of him and carefully positioned her, stroking her pussy lips, then parting them. She felt the press of the head of his penis against her pout. His hands on her hips guided her downward, and she cried out at the exquisite pleasure of him pushing into her grudging tightness, then yielding, then pushing again until she had completely accommodated the fullness of his erection. And suddenly her thoughts were as filled with Anderson as her body was with his substantial cock. Then he began to move inside her, shifting his hips in such a way that with each thrust he raked against the swell of her clit, sending shock waves of delight up through her body as she thrust back.

‘I think we shall not linger long this first time,’ he gasped between barely parted lips. ‘Your need is too great, and mine is little less so. Once we have achieved some measure of relief, there will be all the time we need for pleasuring, and I think we shall need a lot.’

She thought he might be right.




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Demon Interrupted Cover

Enjoy more hot paranormal freebies with the Lakeland Witches and read my online serial, DEMON INTERRUPTED. Just follow the links.

February News :The Mount Box Set Now Available, Body Temperature & Rising FREE, & A New Blog Serial Coming Up Soon

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Happy Valentine’s Day, Lovelies! Wishing you hearts and flowers, chocolate and fizz and lots and lots of great sexy reads!

February is the month for hearts and flowers and sexy stuff – lots of sexy stuff. And a good bit of the yummiest sexy stuff is FREE! So get ready to take down links and put dates in your calendar because free sexy reads is my Valentine’s gift to you.


Throughout the month of February my sizzling and chilling paranormal erotic novel, Body Temperature and Rising, is FREE to download. Body Temperature and Rising is Book One of The Lakeland Witches Trilogy, and a part of the Lakeland Witches World of stories, which includes my serial novella, Demon Interrupted, available as a free read on my blog. Happy, sexy, paranormal Valentine’s Day, Lovelies. Let the Lakeland Witches of the Elemental Coven instruct you in a little sex magic.

NEW SERIAL: Buried Pleasures

When you’ve downloaded Body Temperature and Rising and enjoyed a sexy paranormal fix in the Lake District, when you’ve spent some quality time on my blog reading Demon Interrupted, you’ll be primed and ready for a brand new serial.

Next Saturday I’ll be posting the beginning of a brand new series called Buried Pleasures. Buried Pleasures is set in Las Vegas. Beneath the glam and glitz of Sin City, something dark and sexy is happening, and it all begins when down on her luck cocktail waitress, Tilly Evans takes a job working for the mysterious Mr Graves at the exclusive casino, Buried Pleasures, where she quickly learns that nothing is as it
seems, least of all Mr Graves.


The Mount Series is now a Box Set!

Mount 3 book bundle

Not free, but a real bargain, All three novels of The Mount Series, The Initiation of Ms Holly, Fulfilling the Contract, and To Rome with Lust, all wrapped up for Valentine’s Day in one sizzling hot bundle!

Rita Holly’s sexy initiation; the strange contract Nick Chase fulfills for Elsa Crane; Liza Calendar and Paulo Delacour’s formulation of an exclusive perfume derive from the scent of sex – the cult of The Mount is behind them all. Shrouded in mystery and grounded in sexual exploration, The Mount is world-wide and ancient, its existence known only to its members who keep its secrets from generation to generation. Together for the first time in one volume, the accounts of The Mount in London, Las Vegas and Rome — three novels, three wild romps of lust, sexual largesse and love.

Buy your Box Set Here:






The Romance Review“Skillfully written to provide a provocative blend of kinky sex with subtle mystery. Simply put, this book is a page-turner for the erotic reader.” The Romance Reviews

See the full review here


Coffee Time Romance“The Initiation of Ms. Holly is so hot I am still tingling a day after I finished reading this novel. This spicy number will heat you up and keep you fully charged for days to come.” – Coffee Time Romance

See the full review here


“This story had an exciting plot with some twists and turns, a cast of very colorful characters, some angst, a plethora of amazing and erotic sex and lastly a beautiful love story. Rita and Edward went through all kinds of kinky hell to get where they wanted to be….and I loved being on this journey with them! A great first read for me by K.D. Grace. Can not wait to get my hands on the next book in The Mount series, Fulfilling the Contract.” Violet Blue



Cariad Christmas 2014 CollectionLOVE UNDER THE MISTLETOE, the Cariad holiday collection that contains my steamy novella, A VALENTINE FOR CHRISTMAS is still FREE through the weekend. If you haven’t downloaded your copy yet, be sure to do so and enjoy Christmas and Valentines Day together.

Love Under the Mistletoe contains four festive treats from some of Accent Press’s best-selling authors, that are guaranteed to warm you up at Christmas and Valentine’s Day.

Christmas For One – Elizabeth Coldwell

A jilted bride discovers just how exciting the single life can be when she goes on her honeymoon alone, and finds herself the object of affection in Hawaii.

Snowed In – Alice Raine

Housecleaner Allie unexpectedly finds herself snowed in with a mysterious man with a secret he refuses to share, and with only each other as company, attraction sparks between them…

The Sharpness of Holly – Demelza Hart

A family Christmas reunites Holly with her estranged sister and her new boyfriend Daniel – but when sparks fly between Holly and the taken older man, can she resist temptation or will it prove a Christmas to be remembered?

A Valentine For Christmas – KD Grace

An anonymous gift-giver brings businessman Gerard Jasper the Christmas he’ll never forget when his present comes dressed in nothing but a red ribbon…


So now that you know what’s on the menu for February, I’m going to tempt and titillate you with a little paranormal teaser from Body Temperature and Rising. Enjoy!


Blurb for Body Temperature and Rising: Book one of the Lakeland Witches trilogy (Click here for: Book Two | Book Three)

American transplant to the Lake District, MARIE WARREN, didn’t know she could unleash demons and enflesh ghosts until a voyeuristic encounter on the fells ends in sex with the charming ghost, ANDERSON, and night visits from a demon. To help her cope with her embarrassing and dangerous new abilities, Anderson brings her to the ELEMENTALS, a coven of witches who practice rare sex magic that temporarily allows needy ghosts access to the pleasures of the flesh.

DEACON, the demon Marie has unleashed, holds an ancient grudge against TARA STONE, coven high priestess, and will stop at nothing to destroy all she holds dear. Marie and her landlord, the reluctant young farmer, TIM MERIWETHER, are at the top of his list. Marie and Tim must learn to wield coven magic and the numinous power of their lust to stop Deacon’s bloody rampage before the coven is torn apart and more innocent people die.


Body Temperature and Rising Excerpt:

‘Tim, I’m sorry for my terrible behaviour, and the falling asleep.’ Marie found it hard to meet his gaze. ‘That wasn’t me. I would have never been able to sleep under such circumstances.’ She lifted her eyes. ‘I was afraid for you, and to be honest, I was afraid for the Ravenmoor woman too. One minute I was watching with my heart pounding in my chest while she cast the circle and the next you were waking me up.’

She could see the tension along his shoulders that hadn’t been there before, and the hard line of his mouth reminded Valentine 2her of the Cumbrian stone walls always marking the boundaries not to be trespassed upon.

‘I thought of that afterwards,’ he said, seeming to find it equally difficult to meet her gaze. ‘After I’d added my own dose of bad behaviour to the evening.’ He forced a grunt. ‘Mind you, it was just as well you weren’t watching.’

‘Tim,’ she reached over and took his hand. For a second, she thought he would pull away, but instead, he wrapped his fingers around hers. ‘Tim, what happened?’

The blush that rose from the open collar of his shirt up over his cheeks was dark crimson. The muscles of his jaw twitched, and his shoulders got even stiffer. ‘Nothing happened, Marie.’

‘Look Tim I really am sorry that I wasn’t awake to be there for you and that I was so rude to Serina but really…’ Then she got it. ‘Oh. Nothing?’

He shook his head and glared into his coffee cup. ‘I mean she was doing sex magic, for fuck sake, and I’m not shy, but I couldn’t… I tried.’ His hand twitched beneath hers. ‘That’s when she started trying to sell me all her stupid crystals and potions to help my fucking libido. Marie, I swear, nothing like that has ever happened to me before.’

‘Tim, look at me.’ When his eyes met hers, she continued. ‘You’ve felt sex magic before just like I have, and how hard was it to get turned on?’

He huffed out a breath, and raked a hand through his hair. ‘It wasn’t getting turned on that was the problem, it was trying to keep from ripping off my jeans and fucking everything in sight. That was the problem.’ His other hand suddenly went low to his belly. Marie couldn’t help noticing that even the thought of what the ghosts made him feel, what the Elementals made him feel caused an instant bulge against his fly. She forced her attention back to his face, but not before she remembered the silky hard feel of his cock in her hand there in the manger, and her pussy was most definitely sympathetic.

He continued. ‘And that burn, you know what I mean, that burn. At first it hurts like hell until you get used to it. Then is twists and turns and rearranges itself until, I swear, Marie, it feels so damn good, and…’ His voice drifted off. ‘I didn’t feel that. I didn’t feel that at all.’ For a second the two sat in silence as Tim contemplated his observation, then he spoke softly. ‘Okay, so there was no magic. You did warn me that she was a quack, but still, the woman wasn’t exactly unattractive, was she? If I’d met her at a pub and we’d spent an evening together over a few drinks…’

Marie’s hand mirrored Tim’s resting low on her belly, remembering. ‘There was magic, Tim. I remember now. I remember feeling it just before I fell asleep, the burn, and I remember thinking maybe Anderson had come. But then I knew it wasn’t him.’ This time it was her turn to blush. ‘Then I don’t remember anything else until you woke me up.’ She shuddered at the memory of how desolate she felt when she realized it wasn’t Anderson.’

Holding her breath, she leaned forward and laid her hand on the bulge at his crotch, and he sucked air. ‘Tim, if there is magic that makes us horny, don’t you think maybe there could also be magic that makes us, you know, not able to.’

He placed his hand on hers, and rocked his hips forward into her touch, and his eyelids fluttered. ‘I think it’s a theory worth investigating, and we do have unfinished business, don’t we?’

She lowered herself to the floor onto her knees in front of him and the room was awash in heavy breathing as she undidDemon Interrupted Cover his fly, a bit more awkwardly than she intended, and before the zipper was down, the heavy weight of his erection shove forward into her hand. She offered a throaty chuckle. ‘Tim Meriwether, a commando boy, who’da thought.’

‘Missed laundry day,’ he breathed. ‘You know with everything going on.’

‘Makes it easier for me,’ she sighed, leaning forward to take him into her mouth.’

‘Oh god,’ he gasped and curled his fingers in her hair. ‘Oh god, Marie.’

For a deliciously endless moment, the only sound other than her wet ministrings to his cock was their heavy breathing and the slight protests of the wooden chair as Tim braced and ground against it. The tightly controlled shifting of Tim’s hips made deep-throating him a pleasure, so much so, in fact, that she fumbled with her own fly and slid her fingers down inside the cut-offs, bucking against her hand with the first shiver of delight as she parted her wet folds.

‘You can’t keep that to yourself,’ Tim managed between laboured breaths. ‘I want to see. I want to taste.’

She ploughed two fingers deep into her slick vulva, then eased them free, glistening and creamy with her juices. Shifting only enough that she could see his face well, she lifted her fingers to his mouth.

His cock surged as he pulled them between his lips with a hungry slurp. He made almost the same kind of sound he’d made over the breakfast she’d cooked, only deeper, so deep she could feel the vibration of his moans down his body clear into his cock. And his tongue, my god what the man could do with his tongue even just on her fingers made her gasp, made her pussy let down a fresh flood.

‘You can’t keep such sweetness from me, woman,’ he pulled away from her. ‘Now that I’ve tasted you, I want all of you.’ With the same animal power he had used to heft the bags of grain into the barn, he lifted her until her ass rested firmly on the oak table, then he pushed her back with one hand, kissing his way over her still clothed breasts and down her belly to where the humid heat of his lips and tongue conspired with his nimble fingers, pushing and pressing and rootling until her shorts and knickers were down over her hips. As she lifted her bottom so he could shimmy them off, his mouth kept on target right down over her mons to linger for a tonguing and suckling of her clit, which caused her to make sounds not unlike the contented grunts of Tim’s mare.

Then he went deep, as though he were searching for buried treasure and he knew exactly where to look. Cupping her buttocks to him, he tongued and slurped and suckled her swollen lips, returning to the nib of her clit to stoke the flames that had become a full-fledged inferno. Then the middle finger of one hand sought out her anus, already wet from the delicious mix of her juices and his saliva dripping down over her perineum. He plunged it deep, judging perfectly the results, which with just the right nip on her clit, sent her writhing into orgasm.

Then he pulled away, face dewed with her heat. With one shove of his hand, his jeans were around his knees, and he pushed into her grudging pussy with a growl so feral that she gushed again and responded with her own growls and grunts. She wrapped her legs around him, locking her ankles until he was bear-hugged between her thighs. She met him thrust for frenzied thrust, until the whole world and every conscious thought that existed in it centred around his cock in her cunt. Nothing else existed, nothing else mattered.

She screamed her next orgasm until her throat was raw, and he grunted next to her ear. ‘Jesus, Marie, I have to come. Now!’ And he did. She felt him, felt the core of him as he emptied himself into her over and over again there on the kitchen table.

They managed to make it to the bed for round two.

Download Body Temperature and Rising FREE!

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“I am a huge fan of K.D. Grace’s explicit, well-crafted writing (I’ve selected and published her work in multi-author “Best” collections), and this novel did not disappoint me. It’s the first of a hardcore paranormal trilogy, and many readers think it is her best work to date.” Violet Blue


“Body Temperature and Rising is my favourite of K D Grace’s books so far… So if you’re looking for a well-written, pacy and smokin’ hot paranormal romp, I’d point you towards this book. One warning, though. As soon as you’ve read it, you’ll want to read the next book immediately. I know I do!” 5 out of 5, Erotica For All


“This is powerful, sexy writing from the extremely competent K D Grace. The story contains a compelling narrative. And all of it is set in the most beautiful scenery in the natural world. You really will love this book.” Erotica Readers & Writers Association


“The plot definitely engaged me. It’s a series of one intriguing revelation after another, and one steamy interlude leading into another. Ms. Grace gives the reader a complex story of ghosts, witches and sex magic that I enjoyed and I think you will too.” 4.5 out of 5, Dark Haven Book Reviews


“This well-written, full-length erotic novel comes from the pen of well-established writer K. D. Grace… easily one of the best books I’ve read!” Jade Magazine


“For the love of all things steamy, this is one HOT read. Steamy, sexy and some other words that start with S and mean hot things, Body Temperature and Rising is definitely a wild ride. If you don’t like the sexy, stay out of the sex coven.” Reading the Paranormal


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Instalment 16 of DEMON INTERRUPTED: A Lakeland Witches Story

I hope you’re all enjoying Things that Go Hump on the Night as much as I am. What a fabulous line-up of the very best erotica writers we’ve thingsthatgohump300x200had, and will continue to have all through October!  It’s a month-long feast of paranormal chills, thrills and total sexiness — not to mention fabulous giveaways. And DO be sure to check out the fabulous giveaways and take advantage of lots of chances to win on the rafflecopter at the end of this post.

Also, if you’ve missed any of the exciting posts and chances to win from the first 10 days of Things that Go Hump in the Night, follow this link to the Calendar of Events, and here is the link to Day One.

BUT today, it’s my turn to bring you another instalment of Demon Interrupted.

As you’ve probably noticed, there has been more than one episode of Demon Interrupted, every three weeks recently. That’s because, like most
stories, DI took on a life of its own and would not be wrapped up quite as quickly and as easily as I planned at the beginning. That means that instead of the fourteen episodes I had originally planned for this serial, there will be seventeen. The series will still end on Halloween, the last day of Things that Go Hump in the Night.

And enjoy the scary, sexy, excitement of Things that Go Hump in the Night. Remember, the fun lasts all through October.

If you’ve missed the previous episodes of Demon Interrupted, find the links at the bottom of this instalment.

Enjoy Chapter sixteen, and thanks for joining the fun with this Work in Progress.  If you want to read more about the Elemental Coven’s sexy adventures, check out the Lakeland Witches Trilogy: Body Temperature and RisingRiding the Ether and Elemental Fire. Happy, reading! 

Chapter 16

The Undoing

Demon Interrupted Cover‘Elaine! Elaine, please wait!’ He shoved his way into the bothy behind her, but inside, he found himself looking into the eyes of a young shepherd, who stood over the hearth cooking porridge.

The shepherd nearly upset his cooking pot and fell back against the meagre stone ledge that served as a bed. ‘Milord, what are you doing here?’

It was then that Ferris realised he was wearing Farringdon’s body. The man had tried to run from his nightmares, but Ferris had taken advantage and rode him into the woods and into a cave. There he’d led the man deep into the winding tunnels and let him believe he was lost there in the dark, that no one would ever find him except for the demon that he ran from. As long as Farringdon clung to life, he would never be free of the demon. And in truth, the man would not live much longer. Ferris had become bored with his incessant grovelling and whining and grew impatient to get back to his little witch.


Ferris turned his attention back to the shepherd. ‘They all think you’re dead. They think she killed you and done away with your body. They come for her last night and took her off to the gaol, they did.’

The flesh that he wore suddenly felt icy and the heart in the chest he now controlled beat a wild tattoo. ‘They have taken her? They have taken Elaine?’

‘Yes milord. They thought you was dead.’ He squinted at Ferris. ‘In truth you don’t look so good, milord, shall I serve you some porridge.’

‘As you can see, I’m not dead. I’m perfectly fine.’

‘They don’t know that, do they? Everyone knows you think she’s a witch. Everyone’s afraid of her, and the way you look, who knows what vile magic she worked on you, even if she didn’t kill you.’

‘There is nothing vile about Elaine!’ Ferris backhanded the poor shepherd, who fell back on the bed and covered his bleeding nose with his hand.’

‘Please, milord, I meant no disrespect.’

‘I’ll return to High Moor and when they see that I am unharmed, they will release her into my care.’

The shepherd sniffed and wiped his nose on his sleeve. ‘Then you best hurry, milord. The elders are talking to hang her for her crimes. They think she’s cursed, ain’t that what you always said, milord? They think she’ll curse them all and their worldly goods and their seed.’

‘What crimes? She has committed no crimes!’ He grabbed the shepherd by the collar and shook him until his teeth rattled. ‘She is innocent. If anyone deserves their hatred, it is I.’

‘I’m sorry, milord! I’m sorry. Please! I meant no harm.’

He shoved the shepherd back hard against the wall and ran for the door. It was nearly half a day’s journey by horse back to High Moor House. Though alone, Ferris could make it easily in an instant, he needed Farringdon to prove that Elaine had not killed him. Though the man was deserving of death, which he would soon get, Elaine should not suffer for helping to rid the world of him any more than a farmer suffers from killing the vermin in his field.

He rode the horse at a murderous pace. Fortunately Farringdon had a taste for good horse flesh, and during the journey, he ended Farringdon’s worthless existence and chased his spirit from the vessel, which he needed in order to free Elaine, and which would be of more use to him purged of its evil. Any further tormenting of the toad’s soul paled in comparison to Ferris’ need to reach Elaine. He had to reach Elaine. His whole world, his whole existence had become only the need to be with her again, only the need to hold his dear little witch in his arms and whisk her away from this dreadful place. Yes, he would have to come to her as Farringdon, but once she was safe, he could quickly discard the vessel, and he would take her somewhere far away, somewhere warm and exotic, somewhere that they could be together and be happy.

castlerigg_Stone_Circle1Happy? The concept twisted his heart. In all his endless existence he had never thought about happiness. He had never contemplated what it might mean to be more than himself by virtue of giving himself to someone else, but since Elaine had summoned him he thought of little else. He urged the horse on still faster. He had not realised that the pleasures of the flesh hung in such a fragile balance with the frailties of the flesh. His heart ached, his stomach knotted, and the breath he now needed to keep the vessel viable raked at his chest like fire. He could not lose her! It was intolerable even to contemplate such a thought. He understood the frailty of flesh, he understood the delicate frailty of Elaine’s flesh, and he knew just how tenuous the life force was that animated all flesh. He feared that the frailty he now felt had little to do with the flesh he wore and had everything to do with frailties he had no idea a demon could experience.

The horse threw a shoe when he was but a short distance from High Moor. Cursing at the top of Farringdon’s lungs, he dismounted the lathered horse and continued afoot pushing the man’s weakened, unfit flesh beyond what it would survive if it were not animated by a rider. But even so, he could not save Elaine without the lump of flesh he wore as proof of her innocence and, indeed in his eyes her innocence shone like the sun. The rasping for breath, the hammering of the heart, the aching of muscles were easy enough for him to ignore when his plan was to discard the flesh of Patrick Farringdon as soon as Elaine was safe and away from High Moor. He prayed to the goddess of all things good, though he doubted she would listen to one such as he, he prayed on Elaine’s behalf. Surely the Divine would not deny one so vibrant, one so worthy, one who had already suffered so much. But he knew in the selfish depths of his demon’s being, that he prayed to a deity in whom he had little faith for one reason and one reason only. He could not lose her! He could not lose Elaine!

‘His fever’s dangerously high,’ Ferris heard Sky’s voice as though it came to him through a long tunnel as he ran, endlessly ran, on Farringdon’s cursedly weak legs. ‘What the hell is he doing? We’ve got to bring it down. It’s almost like he’s rejecting his body.’

‘It’s not his body,’ Tim Meriwether said.

Ferris viewed them as though they were all looking down at him through a mist.

‘He’s dreaming.’ He felt his lovely Cassandra nudging at the edge of his consciousness, trying to ease her way into his dreams. ‘If I could just get in, maybe I could help him.’

‘Then hurry,’ Tara said. ‘If you don’t, there may be no choice but to…’

As the wall of High Moor appeared from the top of the hill, Ferris forced all thought from his head except reaching Elaine. He had to reach her on time. The burning in his chest, he knew beyond a doubt, was from far more than his efforts to push the flesh he wore beyond its endurance. Something was wrong, something that he should know, something far too important for him to have forgotten. The feeling of wrongness pushed at his sternum like a leviathan trying to escape, and he ran, stumbling and falling, ignoring bruises and cut, ignoring the hammering of the heart taxed nearly to failure as he raced down the stony road that led to the village.

‘He will not like this.’ He could barely hear Lucia’s voice above the roar of his efforts to breathe. ‘It was never my plan for him to go through this again, and alone. But he would not listen to me. He would not yield.’

She mattered not: nothing mattered but getting to Elaine. As he shoved his way into the gate, stumbling in the dust, the village was quiet. He saw no one on the streets and the feeling of wrongness tightened around him. A skinny cat blinked at him from its post atop a wood shed. As he rounded the corner into the square, he nearly ran into an old woman carrying water from the well.

P1020156‘Milord!’ the woman shrieked, dropping her water bucket. ‘You’re not dead!’

‘Where’s Elaine,’ he shouted, grabbing her by the shoulders and giving her a shake. ‘Where is my wife?’

The old woman yelped and dropped to her knees covering her head. ‘Please milord, don’t hit me. They thought you were dead. We all thought you were dead. We all thought she kilt you.’

‘Where is she?’ He screamed.

‘Oh dear goddess, please, mother, please don’t make him see this again,’ Cassandra cried out to Lucia.

‘I cannot prevent what he must do,’ the Lucia said.

He ignored their voices, even as the truth of it crashed around him, even as he forced his way to the village green hoping against hope that he was not too late.

‘Dear goddess, there must be something we can do,’ Tim cried out. ‘Cassandra, can’t you help him? Lucia? Damn it do something.’

The crowd stopped jeering when they saw him. They parted for him and the world went deadly silent as he stumbled forward to see what he never wanted to see, what he had blocked from his memories for 300 years.

‘Fill the tub with ice,’ Sky commanded. ‘We’ve got to bring his fever down.’

‘If this isn’t really his body,’ Tim said, ‘then he must be rejecting it. Is that what’s happening?’

‘He rejected it a long time ago,’ Lucia said. ‘Trust me, rejection of the vessel he wears is not an issue now.’

The silence dissolved into an endless roar long before he realised it was he, screaming his anguish to heaven. Four men lay dead at the foot of the oak, the last managing to cut her down before Ferris ran him through with his own sword. He kept no count of those he killed or injured in his rage before someone cut her down. Would that everyone in the village was dead and the place burned to ash and razed to the ground. Their lives he would gladly trade for the beating of a single heart. His own life he would gladly trade to feel once again the breath of the woman he cradled in his arms. But she was gone, and even he with all of his great power could not return her life force to her.

Cassandra sobbed in empathy.

‘Let him finish the dream,’ Lucia called out. ‘He has to finish the dream if he is to heal.’

But he would never heal. There was no balm for the depths of his wound, no comfort in the Ether, the Dream World or any realm beyond. The heavens opened and the rain poured turning the village green into a sponge and the streets of the village into a swamp. He did not remember when those who had come to watch her die had left. Surely they must have fled in fear for their lives. He remembered once pushing the battered flesh of Farringdon beyond its limits as he carried his beloved Elaine to a place on the hillside covered in heather and riddled with caves. There above the village in a remote place, he buried her near a stream that tumbled from a spring in the caves.

Two nights later, he attended the meeting of the village elders in the meeting hall. By then the rage in his belly had turned to ice. Only he walked away from the flames. From the side of her grave, he watched the blaze long into the night, heard the anguished cries of the villagers as they struggled to put out the fire and identify their dead. In his mind they were, all of them, already dead. They would sleep soon, and he would return to the village. If Elaine could not live, then neither could they, after all it was their actions that cost her life.

‘I don’t care! We have to get the fever down now,’ Sky said.

‘The ice bath is ready,’ Kennet replied.

But it was fire he watched, fire that burned, fire that avenged and yet it was the icy cold of death and emptiness he felt in his belly.

‘Come back to them, my darling Ferris.’ Cool lips pressed against his.

‘Elaine?’ He opened his eyes and found himself alone in his bed with Elaine leaning over him, caressing his burning cheek. ‘Elaine my darling, I told them! I told them you were here.’

‘No, my Rider, you are hallucinating once more. I am not real.’

Once again he sat on the hillside by her grave watching the flames rise in the night sky below.

Elaine sat down next to him and took his hand. ‘If you kill them all, every last one of them, and their livestock, even those from the next village who came to watch me hanged, I shall be no less dead. And you will live on, my darling Ferris. ‘You will suffer endlessly alone. I do not want that for you. I never wanted that for you. Go back home. They wait for you. They love you, and this world you see is now nothing but dust. It has been dust for a very, very long time. Remember it, for you must. Mourn it, for you lost much, but you cannot undo it, not now, not ever. Go home, my love, and remember that you are much loved by your little witch.’

He wanted to hold her, but she had no substance, like the mists that rose up from the high meadows at night.

‘Go to the Fire Demon, my Love. She will help you. She has use for you. Time does not hold her as it does me. Go with her, my love. Go with her and heal. Wait for me at Elemental Cottage, and when the time comes, when you have healed, I will come for you. We will be together again’ She blew him a kiss, then turned and walked into the hills.

He woke with a gasp of blessed oxygen as though it had been an age since he drew breath. The ice was no longer in his belly, but all over his body. The giant tub in his bathroom had been turned into the arctic and he was naked and shivering in its depths with the three strong men of Elemental Coven holding him in place while he struggled, Cassandra held his hand in an unyielding grip and Sky shouted, ‘hold onto him. Keep his head up! Keep his head up, damn it!’

‘I remember.’ He forced the words through chattering teeth. ‘Goddess help me, I remember.’ And then he wept as he had not wept in 300 years.

Don’t miss the sizzling final episode of Demon Interrupted coming October 31st!

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Here are the links to the previous episodes in case you missed them:

Chapter 1 Demon Interrupted: Perchance to Dream.

Chapter 2 Demon Interrupted: A Chat with a Demon

Chapter 3 Demon Interrupted: Enter the Shadows

Chapter 4 Demon Interrupted: Dark Chrysalis

Chapter 5 Demon Interrupted: The Empty Spaces in Between

Chapter 6 Beneath the Weight of Shadow

Chapter 7 Possessions

Chapter 8 Necessities and Inconveniences

Chapter 9 Demon Dreams

Chapter 10 Backlash

Chapter 11 Chasing the Dream

Chapter 12 The Summoning

Chapter 13 Tenuous Threads

Chapter 14 Corporeal

Chapter 15 The Vessel 



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15th Instalment DEMON INTERRUPTED, A Lakeland Witches Story

As you may have noticed, there has been more than one episode of Demon Interrupted, every three weeks recently. That’s because, like mostthingsthatgohump300x200stories, DI, took on a life of its own and would not be wrapped up quite as quickly and as easily as I planned at the beginning. That means that instead of the fourteen episodes I had planned for this serial, there will be seventeen. The series will still end on Halloween, the last day of Things that Go Hump in the Night, but you’ll be getting more of Ferris and Elaine’s story before then, so sit back and enjoy episode fourteen.

And remember, all through the month of October, A Hopeful Romantic will be celebrating all things paranormal and all Things that Go Hump in the Night. There’ll be lots of your favourite authors stopping by bringing with them lots of paranormal fun. There’ll be lots of great giveaways and lots of scary, sexy, excitement, so be sure to put Things that Go Hump in the Night on your calendar. Remember, the fun begins October 1st. More on that in a later post.

If you’ve missed the previous episodes of Demon Interrupted, find the links at the bottom of this instalment.

Enjoy Chapter fifteen, and thanks for joining the fun with this Work in Progress.  If you want to know more about the Elemental Coven’s sexy adventures, check out the Lakeland Witches Trilogy: Body Temperature and RisingRiding the Ether and Elemental Fire. Happy, reading! 


Chapter 15

The Vessel

Demon Interrupted Cover‘I will spare you a long, drawn-out search,’ Lucia materialised in the wing-backed chair near the library’s fireplace. That her comings and goings were commonplace in the Elemental Coven was evidenced in the lack of so much as a gasp of surprise by anyone else in the room at her sudden appearance. ‘Soul Riders are very obscure in your magical histories. As with succubi, most people think them only a myth.’ She nodded to her daughter and smiled.

‘So now you’re going to be forthcoming with information?’ Tim said, folding his arms across his chest. ‘About damn time.’

She offered him the kind of tolerant smile one would offer a child or a simpleton, who struggled to understand basic concepts. ‘I can speak of what Ferris’ dreams have already revealed, what he has already shared with the coven; nothing more.’ Her gaze came to rest on Ferris, who sat in the other wing-backed chair next to the fire, still unable to get warm, though Sky said he no longer had fever. ‘Believe me, it is not that I don’t wish to help our dear rider understand what has befallen him, but the pact between us was sealed with powerful magic that makes it physically impossible for me to do so until he does. My memory of that period in his existence is linked to his own, as he wished it at the time. If he desires to understand his past and who he is, then he must discover it for himself.’

‘Then he is a demon.’ Tim said.

‘Of sorts.’ Lucia shifted in her chair and smoothed the flames of the fire robe across her lap. ‘I suppose you could compare Soul Riders to the furies of the ancient Greek myths, but much more –’ she shrugged ‘– mercenary.’

‘In the dream, Elaine bargained for my services with the price of her own life, of her own soul.’ Ferris closed his eyes and leaned his aching head against the back of the chair. It was easier to speak of the dream with his eyes closed. For him it wasn’t a dream; for him it was as real as the breath he now drew. ‘What she asked of me, I was more than willing to do. Her husband, Patrick Farringdon, deserved the worst I could do to him.’ He opened his eyes and looked around the room at his coven family who watched him intently, but there was no judgement in their eyes. For that he was thankful. ‘I was more than happy to do it. I … fed on his fear, his distress as I forced him into his own darkness. As he grew weaker, I grew stronger, and I shared that strength with Elaine.’ He scrubbed his hand over his face. ‘In the beginning it was not so much avenging Elaine that drew me to take her bargain as it was the possibility of riding a pure soul after I had finished with her husband. That was an experience, I had never had before, an experience I had never contemplated until she offered herself to me.’

‘She was hardly pure if she summoned a demon to torture and kill her husband, was she?

The words were barely out of Tim’s mouth before Ferris exploded from his chair and had the man by the throat. ‘You don’t know what she suffered, farmer. You don’t know what she endured.’

A sizzle not unlike an electric current grazed his body and expanded outward along with the scent of ozone. Somewhere far away, he heard gasps and cries and people scrambling.

‘Let him go! Let him go, Ferris! Let him go now!’ Someone shouted.

It was Cassandra’s voice that brought him back to himself, her hand on his arm, her succubus energy calming the fire and syphoning it from him until he could contain it, and he suddenly realised he held Tim by his throat, his feet several inches above the Aubusson carpet, something that a man of Patrick Farringdon’s stature could not have done. He released the farmer, who stumbled backward coughing and grabbing his throat. Then he caught his balance, and watched in fascination, along with the rest of the coven, as Cassandra moved into Ferris’ arms and kissed him on the mouth. At the touch of her lips, the world contracted and he fell back into the tight confines of Farringdon’s body.

No one moved, no one spoke, but he could feel all eyes on him. He did not apologise for his treatment of Tim, but turned and settled back into his chair. Only after he had settled and drank the glass of juice Fiori had set on the nesting tables next to him did Tara speak.

‘That –’Tara nodded to Ferris, but spoke to Lucia ‘—is the rider’s true form?’

‘This is the form in which our Ferris had chosen to enflesh himself before he took upon him Farringdon’s vessel.’

‘But you know this,’ Ferris said. ‘You’ve seen me in that form.’ He nodded to Tim, who still rubbed his throat, then understanding dawned as the others stared at him blankly. ‘Then that too must have been only a hallucination.’

castlerigg_Stone_Circle1Tara nodded. Then she quickly added. ‘No one was affected by it but you, though.’

‘Still,’ Fiori said, ‘the last time you came to my bed, Ferris, when you eased the nightmares for me, while we were making love I felt that you were somehow larger, somehow more than yourself.’ She shrugged. ‘I didn’t think too much about it, at the time. I mean dreams and the magic they evoke can do strange things to people.’

‘In all honesty, it is very rare for a witch to have the power to call and control a Soul Rider without being ridden herself,’ Lucia said to Ferris. ‘Your Elaine must have been exceptional.’

‘Are there others like Ferris?’ Kennet asked.

‘Perhaps,’ Lucia said. ‘Though I have never met another. We demons tend to stay away from each other as much as possible for obvious reasons, but Soul Riders are even more reclusive. The power extracted from a soul is unfathomable, so a Rider could easily get by only taking one soul a millennium, one truly corrupt soul, and staying in obscurity the rest of the time.’

‘I took more than that,’ Ferris said. ‘I took often and without remorse. I don’t know how I know that, but I do.’

‘What do you remember beyond the dream?’ Tara asked.

He shook his head. ‘Only intimations, vague shadows of insight that I know are true, but don’t know why or how.’ He looked down at his hands. ‘I don’t know how I ended up in Farringdon’s body, and clearly in my first encounter with Elaine at Storm Croft, she didn’t know either. In fact, she had no memory of who I was at all.’ Now, knowing what he knew, it hurt to think that she didn’t remember him.’

‘Ferris,’ Cassandra, who had been kneeling on the floor next to him since he attacked Tim, laid a hand on his knee and looked up into his eyes. ‘It’s very possible that your first encounter with Elaine was only a hallucination. As far as we know, you hadn’t dreamed before your dream in the Room of Reflection three days ago.’

Three days ago? How could he have been gone that long? ‘I suppose it’s possible,’ then he added quickly. ‘That doesn’t mean that she hasn’t visited me, that she hasn’t been with me.’

‘That she lived, there’s no question,’ Marie said. ‘And there’s documented evidence of the hanging of one Elaine Farringdon, wife of Patrick Farringdon, who owned High Moor Estate. It’s astonishing that she hanged rather than burned. The villagers firmly believed she was a witch, as of course she was.’ She looked down at her laptop. ‘But according to the histories, which are surprisingly detailed, she was hanged as a murderess, though from everything I can tell, it was a lynch mob that hanged her. She was never tried.’ She cleared her throat and nodded to Cassandra, who took Ferris’ hand. ‘I’m sorry,’ Marie said softly. ‘Ferris, I didn’t mean to be insensitive.’

He shook his head and straightened in his chair, forcing himself to breathe normally, forcing down the rage and the pain he felt. ‘Then I failed her. I couldn’t save her.’ His voice broke. ‘Clearly I couldn’t or she wouldn’t have come to me as a ghost.’ He nodded for Marie to continue

This time her voice was softer, laced with sympathy. ‘After her death, according to the history of High Moor, her husband returned, not dead at all, but only travelling and, in his rage, in his pain at the loss of his wife he …’

‘He what?’ Ferris asked, gripping Cassandra’s hand until he was sure she must be in pain.

Marie looked up at him, her eyes misting. ‘He … took her body and hid it away. No one knows where. There are lots of caves in that region. That night he returned when the village elders were meeting in the church. He locked the doors and …’

‘And what?’

She took a deep breath. ‘He locked the doors and burned the building with them inside. Then,’ she held his gaze. ‘Then he simply disappeared.’

‘I see,’ he said so softly that it was little more than a movement of his lips. ‘What else?’

‘Ferris, the really strange thing about what we’ve discovered is the accounts of Farringdon.’ Alice took over the story. ‘It would appear, as you say, the villagers hated him. In fact there seemed to be an incredible amount of sympathy for his young wife in the beginning. He married her for her father’s money, after whoring and gambling away all of his own. The accounts say that he beat her from their wedding night onward; that he bragged that while he may have been forced to marry her for her money, he had no intention of changing his lifestyle to accommodate the baggage her father couldn’t get rid of on anyone else in the kingdom. Apparently rumours of her being a witch made it difficult for her father to find a suitable match.’

With a growl of rage, Ferris threw his empty glass across the room and it shattered against the wainscot as the sizzle of the electric current surge over his body again. Next to him Cassandra tightened her grip on his hand and spoke soothing words that he could barely hear above his anger.

Marie spoke in a quiet voice. ‘It makes no sense that this man, who clearly despised and abused his wife, would be upset about her death. Oh, he might very well have played the grieving widower until the dust settled, but if as you’ve said was the case, he was already spreading rumours about his wife being a witch, then he would have found her death a vindication of his accusations. He would have never grieved her to the point of avenging her death upon the heads of all the village elders. The man was a lot of things, by all accounts, but he wasn’t crazy.’

The silence in the room stretched to the breaking point, and Ferris heard it as a deafening roar in his ears. The library felt as though it were stretching itself with the silence, pulling everyone else in the coven away from him. His head pounded. His muscles ached from the tension. When, at last he spoke, he could barely hear his own voice over the roar. ‘Then I was the one who did this thing. I was the one …’ he looked down at his hands as though seeing them for the first time, and fisted them until his fingernails cut into his palm. ‘I was the one, in this body, who avenged her death.’

No one spoke. ‘I am the one who failed her, when she trusted me, when she believed I would come for her.’

‘There’s more.’ Marie glanced down at her laptop, then back up at Ferris. ‘Though no one knows where her body was buried, there were accounts of sightings of her ghost for years to come. Nothing is left of that place now. The village was but a small one even then. High Moor was Farringdon’s last and poorest property. The rest he’d long since sold to pay his debts.’

All eyes were on Ferris. He knew they all hoped desperately he would remember, though to remember such hideous events was not his wish. He understood now why he chose not to remember them, why he made no attempt to discover his past. He was a demon. That would have been difficult enough for him to stomach, but there was no conflict in his being when Elaine summoned him. That he had done hideous things, he had no doubt. The very act of being a Soul Rider should have been repugnant to him, and yet of all the evils he had done, of all the heinous acts he had committed, even that he had burned the village elders alive he might have come to terms. But that he had failed Elaine, that she had died before he could come for her, this was the breaking point, the precipice beyond which he could not even beg forgiveness, for how could there possibly be any?

‘You must reclaim those memories, Ferris,’ Lucia said. ‘Though the pain of it seems unbearable, you must remember. The consequences have not changed if you do not, and you risk everything by trying to avoid the truth.’

‘I told you I wanted to return to the dream,’ he said. ‘I have to find Elaine, and if remembering the truth is the only way that I can do that, then I wish to remember every detail. I wish to know her suffering as though it were my own. I wish to … make amends.’

‘Ferris it happened three hundred years ago.’ Tim’s voice was unusually gentle.

‘Maybe so, but for me it feels like yesterday.’

Cassandra took his hand again and brought it to her lips. ‘You have no need to make amends, my dear Ferris. I’ve been your penance. Surely you know that. And no one could have been more trying that I’ve been.’

He leaned forward and kissed her cheek. ‘You have been my reward, little succubus, and my salvation.’ He closed his eyes and laid his head against hers, feeling her magic effervesce over him like a sea of champagne. He pulled away, still holding her hand.

‘She is not your salvation, demon, that you must find for yourself.’ He looked up to see Elaine standing in the doorway, wearing the robe she wore when she worked magic. She beckoned to him. ‘Come back to yourself, Ferris, my darling. It’s been too long, and I can’t come home until you do. We are bound to each other by powerful magic, remember?’ She turned and walked away.

‘Elaine! Wait!’ As he stood to follow her, the room fell away. He could hear panicked voices a long way off. Cassandra’s fingers slid from his. And he followed Elaine into a field and then onto a remote hillside, to the door of a shepherd’s bothy, into which she disappeared.

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Here are the links to the previous episodes in case you missed them:

Chapter 1 Demon Interrupted: Perchance to Dream.

Chapter 2 Demon Interrupted: A Chat with a Demon

Chapter 3 Demon Interrupted: Enter the Shadows

Chapter 4 Demon Interrupted: Dark Chrysalis

Chapter 5 Demon Interrupted: The Empty Spaces in Between

Chapter 6 Beneath the Weight of Shadow

Chapter 7 Possessions

Chapter 8 Necessities and Inconveniences

Chapter 9 Demon Dreams

Chapter 10 Backlash

Chapter 11 Chasing the Dream

Chapter 12 The Summoning

Chapter 13 Tenuous Threads

Chapter 14 Corporeal