For centuries, Cole Shilo has mourned the loss of his wife, Mianna, and drowned himself in his work as Head Sentinel of Cornerstone Deep. But when he is sent to harvest a second-class woman who has broken curfew, her soul calls out to him. His response couldn't have been worst timed. The Lords and the Gods are not happy.
Rebirth isn't possible on Cornerstone Deep…
“My life is a mirage of endless time. But you engulf me, rivet my mind, encompass my soul.”
Cole unstopped the slender vial and gently lifted Anna’s head to administer the potion. As he carefully tipped the container to her lips, tremors traveled down his forearms. His hands quaked. The amber liquid jumped to the brim and he quickly tilted it upright. Gods, Cole, control yourself. She needs every drop.A soft palm rested on his wrist and Cole’s gaze shot to Elaina’s. When had she returned and how did he not pick up on the strong compassion emitting from her when she had? Her blue eyes looked deep into his, understanding with a touch of sadness. “Let me do that, Cole. You’ve been through enough.”He wasn’t sure if the tremors were from anticipating a fortunate outcome or from sheer anxiety over the whole ordeal, but he accepted her tender attention as a blessing. Vincent’s intervention with her was evident. He watched as she patiently poured small measures into Anna’s mouth.Elaina turned to Cole and lifted the emptied container. “Well, that’s it. She got it all.”He sighed. “Thank you.”“Anything, Cole.” She smiled and set the vial on the bed stand. “What about you? Can I get you a drink? It might calm you some.”Nodding, he offered a small smile.“Good, then. I’ll be right back.”As she closed the door behind her, Cole eased himself onto the bed. “Don’t give up, Anna.” His faint words were swallowed by the silence of the room. “I’ll fix this and see to it nothing ever happens to you again.” Brushing his fingertips over her hair, he solemnly whispered a plea. “Don’t leave me.”Her soft locks sent countless memories rushing through his mind—her smile, cheeky comments, blue eyes dancing as if life itself was a game. Her Arylinite spirit embraced every moment of love, able to see beneath façades that others deemed as truth. He sighed, knowing that side of her may have been unique to that lifetime—a result of her specialized upbringing in the Arylin colony of the northern territory.He tilted his head and gazed over her still face. Her features were remarkably similar to Mianna’s. The gentle slope of her nose, the way she chose to wear her dark hair long, and he couldn’t deny her blue eyes when she’d looked at him. He cupped her cheek with his hand, gently stroking her lips with his thumb. They curved from a bow-tie center into a natural smile. So soft. Inviting. He leaned to her and lightly kissed them, then leaned his cheek to hers.“Talk to me, Anna.” His breath was a plea. As much as he knew no answer would come, his heart called to her with his deepest wish.He brushed his fingers down her neck to her chest, tenderly caressing her pale skin at the neckline of her gown. A strained pause caught his throat as he lightly followed her breast to her ribcage. “What’s in your heart?”
The tiny circles he drew on the thin fabric fed his longing for her touch. Supple creases followed his motion. To have her arms around him, the love they brought, had given him unmitigated comfort in a past life. It could be so again.“My life was yours.” He kissed the circles he created. “Every moment, I found joy in you.”He looked at her closed eyes. “Please, don’t leave me. Please promise you’ll be mine again.”No emotion showed upon the visage of his love, but distant echoes of vows lighted his soul.“Open to me.” He wondered if his whispered thought could possibly reach her unconscious mind. “Speak to me with your soul.”Her lips parted and a chill flew through him. He waited, listened intently. Weak sensations touched his senses. “Anna,” he said aloud, hope rising. He cupped his palm to her cheek again. “Fight for it. Call to me.”Anna remained silent.Cole’s heart ached. Yet, that small reaction spurred his resolve. He framed her face as he lowered to take her lips with his. “I’ll help you.”The scent of licorice and cream fell from his lips as he called on his Breath of Zephyr. His soul’s voice owned his words. “My life is a mirage of endless time. But you engulf me, rivet my mind, encompass my soul.”She inhaled his sensual gift and gasped for deeper intake.Yes. Hope impossibly filled him. His muscles tightened with expectation. His heart pounded against his chest. “Call to me!”
Charlene A. Wilson is an author of tales that take you to other dimensions. She weaves magic, lasting love, and intrigue to immerse you into the lives of her characters.
She began writing in her early teens when her vivid dreams stayed with her long after she had them. The characters and worlds were so amazing she brought them to life through her books.
Charlene resides in a small community in Arkansas, USA, with her two beautiful daughters, husband, a cuddly Pekingese, and a very chatty cockatiel named Todder.