Author Erin Richards 

Adventure into the darkness . . . and let the sparks fly!

 
  • Romance
  • Young Adult
twilight rising

Twilight Rising

Psychic Justice Book 2 (novella)

 

After Juliana Westwood decides to join the Psychics Guild, she dreams of a murder and butts heads with them as they investigate...and warn her to stay away. Someone's threatening Guild psychics, fueling her detective fiancé's dislike of the exclusive club and urging her to investigate from the depths of her mind. 

Detective Alex MacKenzie’s jealous of Guild PI Jake McAllister who’s developed a telepathic connection to Juliana, battling Alex’s ability to protect her. But Jake has enigma Lily Falbrooke on his mind when she returns home to attend her father’s funeral...and receives a cryptic message from the grave from Juliana. Will Alex ever accept the Guild in Juliana’s life? Or will her psychic talents destroy their hard won relationship.

The novella, TWILIGHT RISING, gives CHASING SHADOWS readers a glimpse of Juliana and Alex a few weeks after the events of CHASING SHADOWS and sets the stage for Jake and Lily’s story in STEALING TWILIGHT, the next book in the Psychic Justice series.

Excerpt

Fog drifted through Juliana’s mind, thickening into a smothering cloud. Weightless, she plummeted down an ensnaring hollow. Lightning flashed in quick succession in her skull, revealing the fractured thoughts of another.

Subtle gunfire crackled the air like a firecracker dud.

The driver of the car ogled a man standing under a canopy of trees on the right side of the road ahead. The moving car faltered from the front end, swerved away from the solitary figure. Tires screeched and metal crashed into steel, scraping and tumbling down a hillside dotted with boulders and trees.

The man’s head slammed the car’s roof, his horrified cries inside the vehicle wafting on the wind. The car rolled over and over until it landed on all four wheels. Slashes of moonlight illuminated the black vehicle through tree branches, dappled light reflecting off the shattered windshield. A splintered rearview mirror caught the ghostly image of a tall, muscular man watching from the cliffside above, a handgun engulfed in his large hand, his long dark hair streaming in the breeze.

“Twilight’s yours. Don’t let them steal your twilight, flower child,” his ragged voice intoned.

Death claimed his last breath.

The vision dissolved, and diffused light stabbed Juliana’s eyes. “No, no, no,” she cried out, reaching to stop the car from losing control, catching her sheer bed scarves in her fist.

“Juliana, babe.” Alex cupped her cheeks, and she opened her frantic eyes. “Dream?” He held his breath, waiting for the inevitable answer he didn’t want to hear.

A lone tear slipped down her right cheek. “Vision,” she croaked out, mouth thick from sleep. Anxiety tingled in her chest. Her first telepathic vision since she’d almost died when a lunatic kidnapper had sucked her into his own telepathic mind. Was it happening again? Another psychic to psychic connection? Confusion fogged her brain as her anxiety spread. No. Not again. She rubbed her forehead, but it only served to spread her fear.

Alex’s steely embrace held her close to the solid, safe planes of his body. Skin met skin, but the vision refused to allow her to focus on his nakedness. Only four weeks had sped by since they’d rescued Alex’s young niece from the kidnapper. After twelve long years of separation following high school, they’d refused to waste any more time living apart, and he immediately became a fixture in her house and in her life again. She loved every moment, and most of all, she loved his calming presence in her bed, where she felt safe sleeping for the first time in her life, even when the monsters merely lingered in her head.

“Are you sick? Need soda, aspirin?” he asked, knowing how her visions affected her at times. She shook her head. “How bad?”

“A car accident…murder.”

“Murder? Are you sure?” He tugged the sheet over them. “Have you ever dreamed of plain accidents which aren’t crimes?”

Eyes bugged out, she asked, “Must I buy you a clue?”

A flush worked up his neck, his heat warming her face. “Sorry. Forgot about prom night.”

High school prom night had been the last night Juliana and Alex had spoken to each other until she’d returned to San Jose and dreamed about the kidnapping. The accident ten years ago had critically injured his twin sister and killed his best friend. The accident had also precipitated the near destruction of Juliana’s life—the first time she’d ever had a vision go horribly wrong.

“In San Jose?” he continued.

“I think I saw the Lick Observatory’s white domes on top of Mt. Hamilton in the background. We had a near full moon last night, and there was a large moon behind the largest dome, illuminating it.”

Alex stiffened. He understood his role. He knew she’d dream her way through this case, finding one clue after another—their second case together. “There was a full moon during Lisette’s kidnapping.”

“Weird, I know. The moon seems to follow my visions.” She kissed his bare chest in an attempt to relax him. No dice. He remained stiff as a mummy.

She inhaled his sandalwood musk cologne, a soothing fragrance to calm her own nerves. The case may end up on his plate, depending on Mt. Hamilton’s jurisdiction. If not the lead homicide detective, he’d at least be a team member due to her involvement, regardless of the type of case. After his niece was kidnapped, he’d made the demand to the police department to be part of every crime she witnessed in her telepathic visions. Fortunately for the PD, no one wanted to tackle her psychic talents, and rejecting his demand didn’t become an issue.

“I’m sorry. I know you wanted a longer break since rescuing Lisette, but this is what you bought when you hooked up with a Westwood psychic.” Juliana circled her arms around his neck, wanting to paste a balm over his dread. He hated her psychic visions, hated what they did to her. But he’d experienced firsthand how much her telepathy helped to find his niece, and neither of them would ever deny her ability to assist others in need.

His mouth landed on hers, hot and possessive, showing her how much he loved her and how much he’d protect her to the death. Tongues tangoed and dueled, and his erection grew rigid against her thigh.

Breathless, he drew away, hooking her hair behind her ears. “I want you so bad right now.”

“Really? Do tell.” Gently, she nudged her leg against his hardness, then fake-pouted. “We have business to attend to, a murderer to identify.”

Alex raked a hand through his short hair, a sure sign of his agitation. Next stop, popping the antacids like mints. “Tell me about the vision. I’ll take an official statement later.”

Juliana related the sketchy details. Too little to help, but enough to put the police department on notice that either the accident had already happened, or would happen soon.

Her visions were seldom wrong.

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Bookish Quotes

"It is perfectly okay to write garbage—as long as you edit brilliantly."

– C. J. Cherryh

"Words are a lens to focus one’s mind."

– Ayn Rand

"Half my life is an act of revision."

– John Irving

"There’s no such thing as writer’s block. That was invented by people in California who couldn’t write." (LOL!)

– Terry Pratchett

"Tell the readers a story! Because without a story, you are merely using words to prove you can string them together in logical sentences."

– Anne McCaffrey

"I try to create sympathy for my characters, then turn the monsters loose."

– Stephen King

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