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Ares (Guardians of Hades Series Book 1)Felicity Heaton
Prince of the Underworld and Lord of Fire, Ares was banished from his home by his father, Hades, two centuries ago and given a new duty and purpose—to keep our world and his from colliding in a calamity foreseen by the Moirai.
Together with his six brothers, he fights to defend the gates to the Underworld from daemons bent on breaching them and gaining entrance to that forbidden land, striving to protect his home from their dark influence. Caged by the manifestation of his power, held apart from those he loves by his own fire and starved of physical contact, Ares lives a cold existence driven by duty and the desire to return to his world.
Until his world collides with a daemon who steals his power and a mortal female who shatters the ice around his heart and awakens the true fire within him—a soul-stirring passion both dangerous and seductive.
Megan has wandered far from her home, driven from everyone she loves by the devastating realisation that she is different to them all. Unsure who to trust in the world, she keeps to herself, until a fateful stormy night brings a temptingly handsome warrior crashing into her life and into her heart—a warrior who seems to hold powers more frightening and marvellous than her own.
When the New York gate comes under threat, and Ares is put to the test, will he choose his duty and regain the power he needs in order to save his world or will he choose the desires of his heart and sacrifice his fire so he can be with the woman becoming his whole world?
ARES is available from Amazon Kindle, Kobo Books, Barnes and Noble Nook, Apple iBooks stores and other retailers. Also available in paperback. Find the links to your preferred retailer at Felicity Heaton's website
ARES – Excerpt
Ares woke feeling as though he had drunk from the river Acheron and gone ten rounds with a gorgon. His head pounded so hard that he couldn’t think straight and he didn’t want to open his eyes until he was sure his bedroom was dark. Every bone in his body throbbed deeply, making it difficult to keep from twitching restlessly.
He cracked one eye open a sliver, enough to see that it was dark in his bedroom, but not dark enough. What little light there was stabbed his retina, sending shooting pains down his optic nerve to the base of his skull.
What in the name of the gods had happened last night?
He groaned, gritted his teeth and pressed a hand to his head. Rolling onto his side was a mistake. The action sent fire ripping through his shoulder and he moaned low and long. He had definitely been in a fight. How it had ended and how he had gotten home were beyond him though. He eased his eyes open little by little so they adjusted to the painful dim light.
He did recall losing a tooth. He brushed his tongue around his mouth. All of them were back, so he had been asleep for over seven hours straight.
He pushed his red covers off and stared down at himself. Who had put him to bed? Certainly not him because he was wearing his black trunks and he preferred to sleep in the nude. A quick scan of his body revealed zero damage, just the way he liked it. He eased into a sitting position. His clothes from last night were in the corner of his bedroom, close to the open side that joined it to the living room.
They were folded and stacked.
Esher? The man was a neat freak. Had to be Esher who had put him to bed, but what had his younger brother been doing in New York?
Ares swung his legs over the edge of his double bed and pushed onto his feet. He stumbled forwards and hit the wall, grasping it to stop his knees from giving out beneath him. Damn. Whatever had happened, he was still feeling the effects of it now.
His muscles ached but he straightened, ignoring their protests and stretching them to loosen them up. He held on to the wall and walked as far as he could with its aid, and then risked it. He let go of the wall and his legs didn’t give out. Progress, but he still couldn’t figure out why he was feeling so weak.
He crossed the short distance to his clothes, fished his black coat off the top of the pile and held it up in front of him. The back was ruined, riddled with holes that were scorched around their edges.
His dark eyes widened and cold stole through him.
He dropped the coat, stared at his hands, turning them palm up, and called his power.
He focused harder, determined to bring fire to his fingertips.
The cold inside him spread icy tendrils until it seized all of him, leaving him chilled to his core.
He breathed hard, eyes locked on his fingers, struggling to come to terms with what he was seeing and what he was feeling.
His power was gone.
It couldn’t be gone.
He was just tired and sore from the fight against that daemon. That was all this was. His energy was low and his body wasn’t responding because of it. There was no reason to panic. With a little more rest, he would make a full recovery. He would. There was absolutely no reason that he wouldn’t.
His chest burned and he looked down at the spot above his heart, along the line between his pectorals. It flickered between perfect skin and a blistered red patch. He clutched it as pain seared him, as hot as the deepest pit in the Underworld, and ground his molars together. The daemon. The bastard had touched him there and then it had been able to use fire.
He had stolen his power.
Ares growled and levelled a punch at the wall, slamming his fist into the plaster and denting it. Fire, but not the sort he loved with a passion, chased through his bones and his shoulder throbbed madly.
What was he supposed to do now?
He had never been without his power before. None of his brothers had either. He wanted it back. He felt naked without it, weak despite his immortal strength and other abilities. He had cursed his power since arriving in the mortal world two centuries ago and had dreamed countless times of how good his life would be without it, with the ability to touch again and be touched without fear of hurting someone, but now that it was gone, he wanted it back.
Ares glanced at the world drenched in evening light outside his window.
He would get it back.
He stalked across his apartment and shoved the door to his bathroom open. He slid the clear door of the double-width shower open and switched the water on, swinging it straight over to hot for the first time in his entire life. He would get himself warm and then he would call his brothers. They would be able to help him and he needed to tell them what had happened and his suspicions about the gate.
He stripped off his underwear and stepped into the shower. The hot water beat down on his body, easing tired muscles and melting the ache away. He stood under the jet, letting it cascade over him and waiting for it to heat his body back to the temperature he had grown to like.
He hung his head forwards, pressed his palms into the tiles and closed his eyes. The hot water bounced off his arms and shoulders, scorching his scalp, but he still couldn’t get warm. His blood still felt like icy sludge in his veins.
He cursed and slammed his fist into the tiles, splintering them. He was still powerful. There was no reason for him to get jittery just because he had to rely on his strength now and other powers. It was just temporary. He would have his fire back before he knew it.
He really needed to speak to his brothers. Esher hadn’t come alone last night. He remembered Daimon being there too. He didn’t remember calling them though.
Ares switched the shower off and stepped out of the cubicle. He grabbed a fresh white towel from the pile on the oak vanity and stared at it. It was strange not having to worry about setting it on fire. He was in a foul mood, one so black that under normal circumstances he would have to exert all of his willpower to keep his flames under control. Now there was no risk of setting the towel on fire, or his apartment. He had wanted to feel this way for so long, had thought it would be great to be like the majority of his brothers, able to touch things without fear of setting them alight. It turned out that he didn’t like it at all.
In fact, he hated it.
He dried himself off, wrapped the long white towel around his waist and grabbed a smaller one from beside the sink. He rubbed it against his overlong tawny hair, rehearsing how he was going to break this to his brothers. Not only had a daemon got the better of him, twice, but it had taken his power too. Talk about embarrassing.
He was never living this one down.
Gods only help him if his father found out what had happened.
He trudged out of the bathroom and frowned as a soft scent curled around him, bringing him to a halt as it filled his lungs with warmth and soothed the ache in his head.
What in the gods’ names was that smell and where was it coming from?
His body tensed, every inch of him going rigid in response to the delicate scent of evening sunshine and night flowering jasmine.
His eyelids slipped to half-mast and he drew in another slow breath of it, holding it in his lungs and savouring it. He had never smelled anything so sweet and tempting.
He had never smelled anything so feminine.
His dark gaze scoured his apartment. There was a faint sense of familiarity about the scent. It conjured an image in his mind of a beautiful brunette, her shoulder-length hair hanging in delicate wet ribbons that framed her face, a stark contrast against her clear pale skin. Luminous brown eyes had looked at him with heat and stirred a feeling he hadn’t experienced in a long time.
He had felt protective of her.
He frowned, his dark eyebrows pinching together. He had protected her. The daemon had unleashed his power on her and Ares had grabbed the slender woman and pulled her into his arms, holding her nestled close to his chest. She had been so small and slight in his embrace, curled against him, her heat making his heart thunder.
It thundered now.
Was it just the lingering scent of her on his clothes that he could smell?
He couldn’t remember the last time he had noticed the scent of a woman. Had he blocked out their tempting smell, rendering himself immune to their presence so he didn’t suffer as much? The past two centuries had been difficult, especially when some of his brothers had been with women. Seeing them happy and sated when he couldn’t have a woman of his own because the manifestation of his power meant that he would hurt them had killed him.
Ares looked down at his hands.
He didn’t have his power now.
The cold returned, fiercer than before, engulfing him and stealing away all the warmth he had felt on catching the lingering scent of the beautiful woman. He had always hated how his power had become a physical part of him when they had reached the mortal world. Only Daimon could understand how he felt and he shared his longing to be like their other brothers and have a power they could control, one that didn’t constantly flow only millimetres from their skin.
A feeling worse than cold swept through him as he contemplated his power was no longer a problem. It no longer flowed over his skin. No longer answered his call. It was gone. He was empty. No longer himself.
He inhaled with the intention of sighing and stopped when he caught a stronger lungful of evening sunshine and sweet jasmine.
His couch creaked.
Ares swallowed hard to wet his dry throat and edged forwards, the smaller towel clutched in both hands in front of his stomach. His heart beat hard against his chest, pounding out a rhythm that matched his fast breathing. He peered over the back of his red couch.
There was a woman on it.
ARES is available from Amazon Kindle, Kobo Books, Barnes and Noble Nook, Apple iBooks stores and other retailers. Also available in paperback.
Find all the links, a fantastic 4 chapter downloadable sample of the book, and also enter the giveaway and be in with a shot of winning a $75, $50 or $25 gift certificate at her website:
Books in the Guardians of Hades paranormal romance series:
Book 1: Ares
Book 2: Valen – Coming in 2017
About Felicity Heaton:
Felicity Heaton is a New York Times and USA Today international best-selling author writing
passionate paranormal romance books. In her books, she creates detailed worlds, twisting plots, mind-blowing action, intense emotion and heart-stopping romances with leading men that vary from dark deadly vampires to sexy shape-shifters and wicked werewolves, to sinful angels and hot demons! If you're a fan of paranormal romance authors Lara Adrian, J R Ward, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Gena Showalter and Christine Feehan then you will enjoy her books too.
If you love your angels a little dark and wicked, her best-selling Her Angel romance series is for you. If you like strong, powerful, and dark vampires then try the Vampires Realm romance series or any of her stand alone vampire romance books. If you’re looking for vampire romances that are sinful, passionate and erotic then try her Vampire Erotic Theatre romance series. Or if you like hot-blooded alpha heroes who will let nothing stand in the way of them claiming their destined woman then try her Eternal Mates series. It’s packed with sexy heroes in a world populated by elves, vampires, fae, demons, shifters, and more. If sexy Greek gods with incredible powers battling to save our world and their home in the Underworld are more your thing, then be sure to step into the world of Guardians of Hades.
If you want to know more about Felicity, or want to get in touch, you can find her at the following places: