Angelique Armae aka J.C. Makk
Angelique Armae SHADOWS OF THE SOUL, The Paradisian Chronicles, Book 1
"Extremely talented..." — Sherrilyn Kenyon, #1 NYT Bestselling Author
SHADOWS OF THE SOUL
By Angelique Armae
The Paradisian Chronicles, Book 1
Amazon Best Seller
Amazon Kindle Best Seller
When Hell's sexiest bad boy—Nicolai Valentine—defied Lucifer, he lost everything.
Now Heaven's fearless human warrior—Isabel Heart—has come to Nicolai's aid.
When the two meet...
A haunting past is reborn...
Isabel Godfroie Heart is a Paradisian Scholar—an immortal human trained in the ways of Heaven and Hell—who's suffering from memory loss. During her last battle, a dark force erased specific portions of her past life memories. Now she remembers little of times past, save for the fact she's a demon slayer mentored by the archangel Gabriel. When ordered to a new post to help translate a volume of ancient text from a forbidden verse, Isabel is forced to work with the dark prince Nicolai Valentine, a soul who may or may not be responsible for her memory loss. If only she didn't find the tempting creature so hard to resist...
Born to a fallen angel and a mortal mother, Nicolai Valentine is a prince of the Grigorcov, the children of the fallen sons of God. Searching for the lost chalice that will save his kin from eternal damnation, Nicky unknowingly unleashes the Hadean Virus, a dark entity targeting members of the Grigorcov. Now the entity has been unleashed on man's world and Nicky's in a race against time to find the antidote that will stop this deadly parasite. But in order to keep the Hadean virus from attacking again, Nicolai must enlist the help of Isabel Godfroie Heart, the Paradisian Scholar he was unable to save from the wrath of Hell centuries ago...
From Chapter 4
Clara's see-through form shifted once again, making her look much more like a regular child and not so much a ghost. Her day dress vanished, replaced by a simple, eggshell-colored shift.
Nicolai gently placed her down on the bed and pulled the covers up over her small body.
"Will you play ball with me tomorrow, cousin Nicky?"
"Yes, Clara. I will. But now you must sleep."
She reached up, wrapped her small arms around his neck and gave him a kiss. "Good night," she said, and then settled down against the mattress, her eyes closed.
Nicolai brushed by me and grabbed my arm as we headed out of the room. He pulled the door closed behind us.
"I explicitly told you this house was not free for you to explore."
"I couldn't ignore the child. She came into my room and woke me. What was I supposed to do?"
A surprised look briefly crossed Nic's face. "She came to your room?"
"Yes. I was asleep…actually, I woke to other noises, but when I opened my eyes, Clara was standing at the side of my bed."
"What kind of other noises?"
I hesitated. I didn't like telling him I'd had a nightmare. A demon slayer who couldn't sleep because of a scary dream didn't exactly sound right to me. "I heard spirits. Dark spirits, to be exact, chatting."
"That rarely happens around here, and it especially shouldn't happen in the Rose room."
His words perplexed me. "What do you mean rarely happens? Just how many times have you entertained dark entities in your home?"
He turned around and started walking down the hall.
"I think it best you sleep in another room for the rest of the night," he said, talking over his shoulder.
He didn't answer my question. I stomped up behind him eager to give him a piece of my mind. No male-fallen angel or demon-was going to boss this girl around. Especially, when he refused to tell me everything I deserved to know about the situation.
"And another thing, Miss Heart…" He stopped mid-stride.
I collided with his back and gasped.
The hot feel of his strong, muscled body under my bare hands sent a bolt of heat searing through my blood.
Slowly, Nicolai turned around. "Do you always cover up so much when you go to bed?"
His words shocked me. "I don't think that has any relevance to the matter at hand."
"Oh, I think it holds a lot of relevance. How can you expect me to be honest with you, to tell you everything? When you aren't honest yourself?"
"What haven't I been honest about?"
He smiled a wicked, sly grin. "You lied to me earlier."
"You said you don't sleep in your clothes. Yet now, you're fully clothed."
"Did you think I'd go traipsing about your house in the buff?"
"Did you dress before you left your bed?"
"Then you lied to me."
"No, of course I didn't lie." The man was incorrigible. "That's not what I meant when I said I didn't sleep in my clothes."
He took my hand in his and pulled me close.
"I think it's exactly what you meant, had you had a choice. And do you know what else I think?" His hot breath fanned my ear as his lips nipped at my lobe. "I think you fear me," he whispered.
"Don't be ridiculous."
He slid his arms around my waist.
"You fear something. I can feel it. If not me, then you fear yourself."
The man read me like an open book and I hated the fact. He took a step back, dipped his head, and then pressed his lips to mine.
I welcomed him.
Parted my mouth.
Savored the delight of his wicked tongue.
A hint of fresh mint teased my taste buds.
I couldn't remember the last time I enjoyed a simple kiss.
A flush of heat zinged through my body.
My knees buckled.
Nicolai caught me and lifted me into his arms. He carried me the rest of the way down the hall to his suite, a spacious room next to the one where I'd been staying. He placed me on my feet at the side of the bed.
The room was large but sparsely furnished. A heavy mahogany, very masculine looking bed with four pineapple posts made up the main focal point. A matching armoire stood against the opposite wall next to a set of French doors leading to a balcony.
A burst of cold air, blown in from the open doors, chilled the room.
Nicolai walked around the bed and undressed, tossing his clothes onto a chair next to the nightstand.
My soul went topsy-turvy again, but this time I doubted it had anything to do with the Dreadacus mess.
Gabriel taught that well-muscled fallen angels were nothing more than thin shells harboring hideous, ugly souls.
Nicolai didn't fit that category. His differences were too great to ignore.
With my preternatural abilities to view things unseen by the naked eye, I searched the immediate area around Nicolai's body and detected a slight illumination. His aura didn't have the same dark twinge of gray associated with the Nephilim-the offspring of the fallen Grigori.
In fact, it didn't even come close to anything associated with beings allied to Hell. The soft glow that illuminated his flesh consisted of a blue-white color outlined in pale gold.
Nicolai might be a prince of Hell, but his soul certainly wasn't damned.
His unique essence piqued my curiosity and tempted me in ways that felt familiar, yet foreign. In my moment of weakness, I stood gaping, staring at his marvelously sculpted body. I chided myself. The man had no right to tease me. After all, this was the same soul responsible for my sweet Benedict's death.
Naked, he pulled back the bed coverings and settled himself against the mattress.
He had a lot of nerve. "What are you doing?" I asked.
"Trying to get some sleep," he answered.
He looked up at me, his lips curling in a wide grin. "I'm glad you noticed."
I remained in place, my feet firmly planted on the floor.
He rolled his eyes, apparently not amused at my serious mood.
"It's late," he said, "and we have a lot of work ahead of us tomorrow so I think we should get some sleep."
"I can't sleep with a naked man in my bed."
He pulled up the covers and turned his back toward me.
"Then you should have no problem in my bed because I'm not a man. I'm a naked fallen angel, so get in and get to sleep."
I frowned but had little choice in the matter.
The thought of returning to a room occupied by chatty demons seemed a lot less enticing than sharing a bed with Nicolai.
This was so not like me.
Curse the man.
He had no right tempting me in this manner.
No right at all.
I relented, curling up in a ball on top of the blanket.
Getting warm proved difficult thanks to the cold wind blowing in from the open doors.
The blanket pulled out from under me and covered my body. "Hey, I don't like you doing that."
"It's the blanket or freeze," he said.
"Why not just shut the doors?"
"Dark spirits don't like frigid cold places."
"I've never heard that before."
"You don't hear their screeching voices in my room, do you?"
"More likely that's due to you having pissed them off for one reason or another. I've noticed you have a knack for ticking off people."
He nudged closer to my side of the bed. "Really? I hadn't noticed."
I turned to face him, anger and annoyance getting the best of me. "Oh, no? Well, let me tell you, you're very good at it. Like right now for instance, you're really starting to…"
His lips came down on mine, sending my mind spinning with a whirlwind of emotions. The scar over my right breast burned like never before.
I didn't know what was happening. Gabriel's mark rarely caused me pain and definitely never like this.
Sensing I should push Nicolai back, I placed my hands against his bare chest.
He pulled away of his own volition.
He stared into my eyes, but kept silent. Without saying a single word, he simply backed away, wrapped his arm around my waist, and pulled me to him.
Nothing ever felt so comforting, yet, so frightening in all my life.
"What do you get when you cross an angel with a demon?
Sex as hot as the fires of hell and Love as soft as an angel's wing."
"Nobody does angels like Angelique Armae!" --Kerrelyn Sparks, NY Times Bestselling author of The Vampire and the Virgin
Amazon Best Seller - Fantasy & Futuristic Romance
Amazon Kindle Best Seller - Fantasy, Futuristic & Ghost Romance
"you cannot put this book down!"
"In Cold Spring Harbor, Isabel finds a "Jane Austen" mansion, hell hounds, a ghostly child named Clara, and one of the sexiest beings she's ever met. It seems they were meant to meet, but to what end? Then she discovers that the Scholar assisting Nicolai prior was her brother. There are locked rooms, references to a dead wife and sons, holes on the property that drop you straight to Hell (she's already been there, thank you!) and a mounting tension."
"This is one of the best stories I've read. And I've read A LOT of stories. Angelique Armae takes you up and drops you off the edge of the cliff with ease, and keeps the night light burning because you cannot put this book down until you figure out all the twists and turns. The Paradisian Chronicles is set up as a series and I want the next installment -NOW!" --Reviewed by Nancy Eriksen, ParanormalRomance PNR
4.5 STARS! "Shadows of Soul definitely didn't leave a dark corner in my soul! Ms. Armae does a wonderful job with world and character building, which leaves you wanting to keep the pages turning."
"Shadows of the Soul introduces us to Isabel Godfroi Heart, a human scholar trained by Archangel Gabriel in the ways of Heaven and Hell. She is pulled from her current assignment of demon slaying and given the task of helping Nikolai Valentine, a fallen angel, find a lost chalice. What do you get when you mix an immortal Paradisian Scholar (Heart) with a snarky, humorous, and oh-so-sexy fallen angel?"
"You get one hell of a time! Shadows of Soul is packed with loads of actions, sinfully good romance and sarcasm you could bite into, literally! A definite recommendation to anyone looking for a great read, a great time and a story that takes you from Heaven to Hell and everywhere in between!" —Reviewed by Catherine R. Iwashita for The Paranormal Romance Guild
Immortal love story!
"PARADISIAN CHRONICLES BOOK 1: SHADOWS OF THE SOUL is a non- stop thrilling adventure from the very first page. Angelique Armae comes through with an interesting premise filled with all kinds of interesting beings, a story filled with enough plots and subplots that kept me turning pages, and a love that nothing could stop. This story will stay with me for a long, long time. Can't wait for the next one in this series. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and cannot recommend it highly enough. Well done, Angelique Armae!" - Chere Gruver, ParaNormalRomance PNR
"A fabulous novel about karma, past lives, and the battle between good and evil" --Dr. Carmen Harra, author of The Eleven Eternal Principles