The Countdown Begins

Hi Readers,

The countdown begins. We’re just a couple of days away from the launch of Rogue Skies and Hunter’s Night which is part of it. I hope you’re as excited as we are.

Get the first two books in a female-led epic fantasy adventure series, starring a young woman warrior who could become the most skilled witch their world has ever known.

Fans of Nicholas Eames, Julliet Marillier, Michael J. Sullivan, Mercedes Lackey, Brent Weeks, Margaret Weis, and Tracy Hickman will enjoy Robin’s epic quest to survive and thrive in a world set against her.

Get book 1, Hunter’s Night + 23 other adventures, in Rogue Skies. Then grab book 2, Rogue Night and hunt the hunters.

That’s right, you can pre-order Robin’s second adventure now! Help 24 authors achieve their dream of making the USA Today Bestsellers list and get the best books our scribe has written thus far.

(And no, I’m not jealous about that because I’m in it, and I’m adorable. This is Ran, Sarn’s son, and I have a plan to up the ante. More details about that coming soon.)

And now back to our preview of Hunter’s Night, part of Rogue Skies, which launches on Sept. 17! It’s time to meet the villain, and get her side of the story. 🙂

Hunter’s Night

Part of Rogue Skies: A Limited Edition Science Fiction & Fantasy Boxed Set

Chapter 2

Missed a part? Catch up here: read part 1, part 2, part 3.

Hyntra struggled to escape the canvas imprisoning her. How dare this man-made thing get in her way. She was the Huntress. All things bowed to her or died by her hand. Anger sharpened her claws to fine points, and she slashed them through the collapsed tent, ripping five long, satisfying gashes in it then five more crossways, creating a hole.

Now, that was better. Hyntra crawled through that ragged hole into the moonlight, sparkling on the falling snow. Snowflakes caught on her lashes and melted on her face as Hyntra stood and gave her sleek mane a toss.

As she stood there victorious in the snow, she rested her hands on her hips and retracted her claws. They sank back into the leathery pads of her fingers with a soft click and a deliciously cold tickle. Oh, it was good to be the Huntress, especially in winter when she had the run of the forest and no enchanted trees to interfere with her desires. They all hibernated in the so-called ‘winter sleep’ like every other green thing until spring, and their vaunted ‘three rules’ fell by the wayside because they slept too deeply to enforce them.

Well, she wasn’t hibernating. Far from it. Hyntra chuckled. She just couldn’t help it. Life was so good and about to get even better. She laid a hand on the folded square of cloth in her skirt pocket. Power pulsed in the words an ancient hand had inked on that scrap of cloth, and she tingled all over with anticipation every time she touched it.

But Hyntra wouldn’t be starting any fires or cutting down any trees just to be on the safe side. She didn’t want to wake the forest prematurely. Spring would do that soon enough. But she might harm someone under its boughs if someone came after her, and she hoped someone did. Then she’d have a reason to break one of the enchanted forest’s three rules.

Hyntra skimmed a hand down her rock-hard abs and the short hairs covering those taut muscles then shook herself out of her reverie. She waved the creature stalking toward her to hurry up. She didn’t have all night.

He was a faun and as such, part goat where she was part deer, not gazelle. She was not and had never been related to a cow. The faun, Heshen by name, had good, strong legs and fine-looking hooves perfect for scrambling over uneven ground. His white fur blended perfectly into the snowy night. Only his luminescent green eyes stood out, but all the members of the Wild Hunt had them.

“Did you get it?” Hyntra asked because this wasn’t their usual hunt. No, they preferred the kind of prey that could run away, fight back, or at the very least enjoy being seduced, like young, strapping boys, and lithe girls, aged fifteen to thirty. They’d hunt them again soon and replenish their ranks, but for now, Hyntra had to deal with this baby business and the complex spell that required them because the outcome far outweighed her distaste for this kind of hunt. It would be over soon, anyway, so she could deal with it in the meantime.

Heshen grasped the staff sticking out of the snowbank and pulled. It held aloft a lumir crystal in a silver cage that glowed a soft green. Its light glinted off the rings of Hyntra’s creative attempt at chainmail, not that she needed the added protection since her hide was tough, by design, to pierce.

Snow crunched to her left as another member of the Wild Hunt, this one sporting a full rack of antlers, removed another staff topped by that same luminous crystal. It glowed the same pale green as the others.

“Well? Did we get it or not?” Hyntra made a give me gesture.

“You’ll have to be the judge of that.” Heshen shrugged. “All human kids look the same to me.”

Hyntra glared at him until he glanced away. She should redecorate this clearing with his guts for his impertinence, but a better idea occurred to her, and a wicked smile curved her lips. “Then you should bag the next one since you’re so good at telling babies apart.”

Realizing his error, Heshen froze. Objections formed in his green eyes but never made it to his lips. He pointed at something behind her.

Hyntra felt it too then, a powerful presence, and turned to regard the enchanted forest in the valley below. A shiver raced up her spine, but there was no sign of Her, the Queen of All Trees, just her power probing the night. That giant, ambulatory tree sought something or someone this night. It had better not be the person she intended to hunt next.

“Huntress?” Heshen finally said.

“I know. I felt it too. The Witch Tree’s out and about tonight.”

“Does she know?”

That was a good question. Hyntra did something she didn’t normally do. She took a moment to consider what she knew of the so-called Queen of All Trees. Could that giant tree know what she planned to do this night? The Queen of All Trees was far cannier than her army of enchanted mega-foliage but…

Hyntra bladed her hand and slashed it through the air effectively ending the discussion and all further speculation. She didn’t have enough facts to rule one way or the other, so she went with her gut. “No, she doesn’t know, and she won’t find out until the deed is done. We’ll move fast on the next one and be on our way before she could possibly figure it out.”

There was no way the Queen could know what was inscribed on the cloth in her pocket. Hyntra was strangely certain of that. Besides, the well-preserved fabric had been scribbled on an animal’s hide, not any member of the Queen of All Trees’ forest. There was just no way that tree could know what it said.

Satisfied by that explanation, Hyntra gave her pocket, and the cloth inside it, an affectionate pat. It would help her put one over on the Queen of All Trees. That bitch would never get the upper hand ever again, and that thought returned the smile to her face.

“Are you sure?” Heshen glanced about as he asked that, infuriating Hyntra.

She was the de facto leader of the Wild Hunt, and her word was law. He needed a lesson about that after he completed his assigned task. “Yes,” Hyntra said through clenched teeth. “Now get on your way. You have a child to take,” and she had business to take care of.

She was the de facto leader of the Wild Hunt, and her word was law. He needed a lesson about that after he completed his assigned task. “Yes,” Hyntra said through clenched teeth. “Now get on your way. You have a child to take,” and she had business to take care of.

To be continued next week as part of our special launch festivities! Don’t wait! Get your copy of Rogue Skies now!

You can grab Hunter’s Night now for 99 cents, and get 24 books with it by pre-ordering Rogue Skies. ***Rogue Skies will ONLY be 99 cents until Sept. 21. If you grab a copy now until Sept. 17, you can also get Rogues Gallery for free with proof of purchase (a screen shot will do).

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