Black Atonement by Sasha Hibbs
The burden of Dave’s girlfriend’s death pushes Brandi, the Seraph of Love, to abduct David Howels in hopes of protecting Dave from his murderous father.
Will Brandi be able to show Dave that all in life is not lost in death? Twists and turns abound as Brandi discovers her own shocking revelation—that Dave has been her soul mate all along.
Separating Dave and herself from their allies on the threshold of the apocalypse, Brandi turns to an old friend for help—a witch—to aid her in her quest to prepare Dave to face his worst fears and her own. Filled with curses, and secrets that threaten to destroy everything, Brandi must find forgiveness from within before she can find love. In the past, healing a broken heart would’ve been easy, but now faced with the task of healing Dave’s broken heart while not exposing her own, Brandi learns why love is truly the greatest gift of all.
Excerpt from BLACK ATONEMENT:
She began walking towards Dave and stopped. It occurred to her to bolt from the room. She knew Abraham cast a spell on Dave, that he wouldn’t remember anything from tonight. But she would. What would he think of her? God! It had never occurred to Brandi before, in all her vanity, would Dave even think she was pretty? Doubts surfaced in her mind. She’d never had to deal with these kinds of emotions before. She was Brandi, the Seraph of Love. She was gorgeous. Every mortal wanted her. But Dave wasn’t mortal. Dave wasn’t everyone.
Brandi turned to leave, but stopped dead in her tracks as Dave turned at the same moment. His blue eyes caught hers, a glass of punch up to his lips, him stopping as though stunned at what he was looking at. Brandi looked behind her. Did something else capture his attention? She turned her gaze back around. Dave kept his gaze fixed on hers while setting his drink down. His mouth formed a perfect O. Brandi’s heart leapt into her throat. He started walking towards Brandi, his pace slow, as though time stood still.
Dave stopped inches from her, almost as though unsure of himself. He wore a black tuxedo, a matching black mask covering his face. He slowly removed his mask as though it was obstructing a clear view of her.
They stood there together in a timeless moment just taking each other in. Brandi felt like a timid rabbit, too scared to move. Finally Dave took the first step.
“Would you like to dance with me?” Dave asked, his voice so different. It was the same, but it was the Dave she knew before he had lost so much, before he had been thrust into a supernatural world he knew nothing of, before he lost his soul mate. This Dave was untainted by the stains of loving and losing.
Brandi’s voice was jammed in her throat, a first for her. She had never been so nervous before, never had a reason to care what anyone thought of her. “Yes….”
Brandi extended her hand, her gaze locked onto Dave’s. He put his mask back on. Dave brought her up close to him, one hand holding hers up and the other going to the small of her back. He spun her around in circles and all Brandi could do was stare into his blue eyes. She was mesmerized, lost.
She had never been this close to him. If there was something about the Dave spinning her around now, he seemed surer of himself, more confident. Brandi would hold this moment close to her for the rest of her days.
The room was buzzing with music, men and women swirling in symmetrical patterns, the lights casting shadows on the walls, but to Brandi there was only one girl, one boy.
It was only her and Dave in the ballroom, dancing close together, the only melody heard in the great room was the sound of their hearts beating wildly. Brandi gave up on love a long time ago, but staring into Dave’s blue eyes was the closest she came to renewing her faith that something beyond her own self torment existed. She could see a paradise in his gaze, one she wanted to live in.
In this moment with him, Brandi realized a surge of truths. Dave had been the most carefree-vibrant-full-of-life boy she’d ever encountered, a sense of humor so bright it would light up the darkest days. He was everything Brandi wasn’t. And she loved him for it. Brandi Frasier, aka the Seraph of Love, was in love with Dave, aka the man-child whose heart had been shattered by the death of his soul mate, whose mind was currently under the care of a witch, and who right now, this very precious second, was looking at Brandi as no one in the world ever had. Dave looked down on Brandi as though he felt the same way Brandi did.
“What’s your name?” Dave asked, his voice a breathy whisper.
“You look stunning,” Dave said, his voice low.
“Thank you,” Brandi said nervously.
“Would you think I’m crazy if I told you it felt as though we’ve met before?” Dave asked, his voice warm.
“Not at all,” Brandi said, her gaze still locked with his. She couldn’t steal her eyes away from his.
“Do I know you?” Dave asked, the corners of his lips turning up into a smile.
“Perhaps in a previous life we knew each other,” Brandi said, the truth painful.
“What were we in our previous lives?” Dave asked.
“Hmm…I don’t know,” Brandi said leaning in closer to Dave.
“I know,” Dave said, twirling her out and then bringing her in closer and closer. “I was a composer and you were a ballerina, my little dancer.”
“A ballerina?” Brandi said, arching a brow and smiling at him unconvinced.
“Sure. I wrote music, not just any music, but I strung together sounds and melodies so great, they would have matched Amadeus, and they were written just for you. I can see you, a dress as elegant as the lines of your body. You’re in the distance, a soft spotlight framing your tiny figure, you gliding across the stage gracefully…a little ballerina. My little ballerina,” Dave said, his voice dropping an octave.
“Was I happy dancing for you?” Brandi asked breathlessly, his presence closing in on her.
“Yes, and I was happy writing music for you, watching you dance. But in our previous lives, I always watched from afar, never brave enough to ask you to dance with me, as you are now,” Dave said.
“Well,” Brandi said, her gaze lowered to his lips, “it’s good we have our chance.”
Dave lowered his head, resting his brow on hers. Brandi’s heart jumped into her throat. She had never craved anything more. David Lee Howels, her soul mate, the greatest love of her life, only discovered weeks ago, was seconds away from kissing her and she felt like the most fragile girl in the world, her sanity hanging by threads.
Dave cupped her face, tilting her head so she was looking into his eyes.
“My beautiful little ballerina,” he said, and then he kissed her softly, his lips moving gently across hers.
Brandi melted in his arms, leaning into his kiss in complete rapture, her guard down, her heart wide open, the walls protecting that muscle now down. She tangled her fingers up in his red hair, pulling him down on her. She was dizzy, the music playing softly, the moment more perfect than she’d ever dared hope.
About the Author
By age 5, Sasha Hibbs’ favorite movie was Gone With the Wind. By age 12, she completed her 7th grade book report on the sequel, Scarlett. By 18, she met and married her very own Mr. Rhett Butler and as it turns out, she never had to worry about going back to Tara to win the love of her life back. Fortunately, he stuck with her.
With a love of all things paranormal, the ambiance of the South with its gigantic antebellum mansions and canopies of Spanish moss, and a love for her husband’s rich storytelling of blacksmiths and the mythology surrounding their origins, it wasn’t long until the world of her debut novel, Black Amaranth, was born.
When not working her day job as a nurse, you can find Sasha dreaming of her next beach trip, reading the latest YA novel, and drinking more white chocolate mocha than she should.
Sasha lives in mountainous West Virginia with her husband, Tim, and their two daughters, Aeliza and Ava. She is currently hard at work on book four in The Vulcan Legacies series.