A bewitching woman named Adira de la Fay haunts the grounds of Adsbury Manor, a psychiatric care center where Doctor Jase Maddox has taken a longed-for position. Her delicate beauty and soulful eyes unsettle him while her strange ability to nurse dead plants into beautiful blooms, her fervor for playing the cello, and her obsession with all things Shakespeare make Jase suspect her mind is more intact than her previous doctors have believed. Between this puzzle and the desires she raises in his body, he can’t stay away from her.
Adira de la Fay has spent a lifetime locked behind the walls, and amongst the patients, of Adsbury Manor. As her new doctor helps her unknowingly reach her potential by lessening her medication, her powers begin coming back in force. Desperate to escape her circumstances and find a way to right the past, she asks the intriguing man for help. Though he satisfies her lusts, she fears she cannot be truly happy until she claims her rightful place and balances the magical world.
As Dr. Jase unlocks Adira’s passions, she reveals that her gifts run deeper than anyone imagined and that he has untapped powers of his own. Though uncertain as to whether he believes in this strange new world, he must free her from the Bedlam that has swallowed her life. With his career jeopardized, he removes her from Adsbury Manor though the move could land him in prison and her back into the world that has nearly destroyed all she is.
The haunting sound reached him, trilling through a scale. The topmost notes played with each other, chased up and down the scale and then stopped abruptly. Jase scrabbled into his abandoned pants and went barefoot out into the night, still zipping his fly.
Outside, the air hung cool and moist. Mists worked over the ground like girls in gossamer dresses still twirling to the music.
Suddenly, the notes resumed, deep and low and mournful. Having grown up as a part of the powerful Maddox clan in New York, Jase recognized the sound of a cello when he heard it. His family had regular seats to the symphony. And he could nearly envision the rich wooden curves of the instrument resting between a person’s knees.
He followed the music through the web of trees, thinking he would round a trunk and find the musician. Then the sound echoed across the yard, and he realized he was going in the wrong direction.
It had to be a staff member playing. Patients weren’t allowed out of their rooms, which were securely patrolled by night watchmen and a team of special nurses. What doctor would be compelled to hold a midnight concert?
Jase’s bare feet plowed through the wet grass, leaving dark tracks and wetting the hem of his pants. The air cooled his naked chest, but his throat was parched. He swallowed around the dry, sticky lump and continued his hunt.
The melody shifted, grew tumultuous, and drove him forward. He plunged through a hedgerow. The shorn branches scraped his skin as he fell out the other side and at the feet of Adira de la Fay.
She didn’t miss a note. The bow flew over the strings, and her red hair clung to her delicate face. With lips slightly parted and eyes partially hidden behind pale lids, she seemed to dwell in her own world. She was curled around her instrument, her arms, white and ethereal, making long sweeps with the bow.
The hair on the back of his neck rose at the sight of the eerie scene. The mist swallowed her legs to the knee, and she wore a white shift, giving her a wraithlike quality. The melody shifted again into the chilling minor chords of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata. He stood frozen, watching her, not wanting to break into her trancelike state and yet certain she shouldn’t be wandering the grounds alone at night. In his morning meeting with the other doctors, he would bring it up.