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And the Two Shall Become One

Author(s): Mychael Black, Shayne Carmichael

Mael and Cian are back in this sequel to The Prince's Angel! Mael has finally decided to declare Cian his consort, and plans to announce it to his court. While this may cause dissention in the vampire ranks, the two lovers have far worse problems. A demon summoned by Memnet, a rogue vampire, and dirty deals
lead to nothing but trouble, and might even kill the pair if they aren't careful.

Add in a forbidden love between Brandon and Mael's alchemist Cornelius, who already knew Brandon was the one man he couldn't have, the return of Selena, a vampire Cian doesn't trust, and a very wily archangel, and Mael and Cian have a
recipe for disaster. Only Cian has Mael's back in the shifting political world of court, which worsens day by day as Mael realizes there's a traitor somewhere in his own court.

Through it all, it's the love between Mael and Cian that keeps them going, even
when things are at their worst. Can they survive the murky underworld
of the creatures who inhabit the night, or will the forces seeking to
tear them apart finally succeed?



Excerpt

"I summon thee, Zalael, to this place and offer thee this body as your vessel."

The cadence of the words echoed within the darkened room lit only by
candles. The body on the stone altar was less than an hour old, as his
death had been a part of the ritual itself. Several moments passed in
silence before any movement became visible. With a great gasp for air,
the body on the altar jerked with life. His head turned slowly to face
Memnet.

"Who dares summon me?" The creature's voice was low, and the question was more growl than words.

Memnet folded his hands in front of him. The protective circle around him
guaranteed he would remain unharmed should Zalael not find favor with
his offering or the bargain Memnet wished to strike. "I am Memnet,
great Zalael." He bowed his head in respect to the demon. As he looked
up, his gaze was calm and steady as he took in the form not far from
him.

Zalael sat up slowly and moved each arm and leg in turn. He then turned and slid off the altar to stand against it. It took him a moment to gain a sense of balance, and when he finally did,he looked up at Memnet. "And who is Memnet, that he would dare to wake me?"

Memnet studied the face and form the demon inhabited. He had chosen well. The man he picked had an angelic, innocent beauty, with long, silvery blond hair and deep blue eyes. The body, while muscular, wasn't overly so. At 6'3", Zalael was now a truly magnificent creature.

"I am the man who wishes to set you loose on the world. Other than a few chosen tasks, I will leave you free to do as you wish. That is, if you wish to be freed." Somehow he doubted Zalael would choose the alternative of returning to the Abyss again.

A slow smile spread across the demon's lips. "Free?" He moved away from the altar and began circling Memnet. "And what price do you pay? What do I pay? Freedom comes with a price, and calling me from the void carries one just as steep."

"I pay in blood to keep you here, and the price you pay is the inability
to walk in the sunlight." Memnet shrugged slightly, thinking those
terms to be fair enough.

"Very well. Why have you called me?"

Memnet smiled slowly. "Because I need your unique talent to disrupt the
Romanorum." He'd been highly irritated when his plans with the rogues
hadn't come to fruition, and just as annoyed to be minus one Daughter,
particularly Selena, who had been his favorite. "Are we agreed to
mutually help each other, which also includes leaving me in one piece?
I also demand that no harm comes to either me or my family."

Zalael stood before Memnet, his eyes narrowing. "And what do I get out of this?"

"What you get out of it is your freedom. After you've accomplished what I want, I will not return you to the Abyss."

"Then we are in agreement," Zalael said. "What do I face?"

Only after he had Zalael's agreement did Memnet step out of the circle,
breaking it. "Nothing you can't handle as it's only vampires, and
perhaps a few mortals." He went to one of the wooden tables and picked
up a piece of paper. "Their names are listed here."

Zalael took the note and glanced over it, nodding as he read each name
silently. When he reached the bottom of the list, every muscle in his
body tightened visibly. He shot a dark glare back up at Memnet as his
jaw clenched. The note crumpled in his fist.

Memnet leaned against the table, relaxed and distinctly pleased that things were going as he wanted. "Is something wrong?"

"There is a name here I know well. What can you tell me about this Cian Carmichael?"

Vaguely surprised by that, Memnet answered him. "Carmichael is a pain in the
ass sorcerer. He was the one who successfully hunted far too many of my
rogue vampires. As many times as he's shown up, I'd guarantee there is
some kind of alliance between him and the Prince of London."

The note burst into flames in Zalael's hand. "What does he look like?"

"Since I've never met the man, I don't know. Though by all accounts I've
received, he is considered extremely good looking, a blond-haired man
with blue eyes. He should be easy enough to find."


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ISBN (Print):
ISBN (Electronic): 1-60370-449-3
Genre: GLBT
Date Published: 08/13/2008
Publisher: Torquere Press

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