An Angel Assassins Novel
Genre: Paranormal Romance with Urban Fantasy elements
Publisher: Entangled Publishing – Edge Imprint
Date of Publication: April 28, 2014
Number of pages: 268
Tagline: The thief will steal his heart...
While channeling Robin Hood’s “steal from the rich and give to the poor” attitude at a local politician’s house, ex-con Katie Logan witnesses a forced suicide. Dirty or not, supernatural or not, he didn’t deserve to die, especially not by his own hand. But with her record, stepping forward as a witness isn’t an option. On the run from the police and the murderer, she turns to The Bound Ones for help.
When a beautiful woman comes to The Bound Ones, half-angel assassin Cain is immediately drawn to her. But when she fingers him as the killer, he can come to only one conclusion. The twin he thought was dead is very much alive…and trying to send him a message. Unfortunately, that message is: “You’re next.”
It’s a race against time as Cain fights to save the woman he’s falling in love with before his brother Abel destroys them both.
First, Cain checked the room’s double window and the flimsy front door, then threw the motel blanket on the brown carpet. He smoothed his hands across the sheets and lifted the mattress. He let it go and unrolled his blanket, tucking the corners.
“Should be fine now.”
Her mind felt miles away. “Will it be? Fine?”
He removed his jacket and pulled one of his guns from the holster. The magazine shot into his hand before he slammed it back. “As soon as I find Abel your life will go back to normal.”
Katie huffed a half laugh. Normal sounded like a dream. “I—”
Cain paused his movements. “You what?”
“I wish I knew how to help you.”
“Well you can’t.”
She snapped her gaze to his stony face. “Would it hurt to pretend I just showed some compassion for you? You could at least act like you’d considered my words.”
“Let’s analyze your sweet wish, little burglar. I’m an assassin, which translates to I kill people.” The half angel folded his arms and left no doubt about the arrogance on his face. “Sorry if the facts sting, but you can’t fight like I can. You can’t do what needs to be done.”
Infuriating, arrogant, and stubborn was not a good look on him. Katie mimicked his posture and crossed her arms. “Tell me, Mr. Super Assassin, are you sure those legendary fighting skills you claim to have will work when you’re face-to-face with Abel?”
“You think I’ll run from the fight?” A growl slipped through his gritted teeth.
“That’s not what I meant. I want to know if you can”— she raised her fingers in air quotes— “do what needs to be done, when your opponent is your own brother?”
Cain pressed his lips together, and she dove into the void left by his hesitation.
“Family is about love, but it’s also about a shitload of pain.” Katie expelled a slow breath. “When you face off with your twin, the end result will stay with you.”
“Abel’s my blood, but he’s done wrong. I’ll deal.”
Katie tossed her hands up. “Say you’re standing near Abel and he’s got a gun pointed at some poor schmuck’s head. What are you going to do? You’d have to decide whether or not your brother is more important, or that innocent life.”
He clawed his fingers through his hair. “I’d never allow him to harm a soul in my presence. I will stop my brother, but don’t tell me my only option is to kill him.”
“I hope it doesn’t come to that.” Exhausted, she sank onto the edge of the mattress. “I truly do.”
“Ridiculous,” he muttered under his breath.
She shot up from the bed, ready to tell him exactly where he could shove his tough act, but Cain’s hand caught her wrist. They stared into each other’s eyes, but the emotions passing over his face cranked her heartbeat.
“Let. Go.” She jerked her arm, but his grip held.
“You should thank me for my honesty. An angel, even an impure abomination like me, could kill you before you could react. No more wishing you could help me. I don’t want to see you hurt.”
“So we’re clear, if I wasn’t dealing with mind-controlling giants, I could hold my own in a fight,” she said.
Cain’s expression darkened. “Could you? I wonder.”
The Nephilim brought her crashing down onto the mattress, and Katie yelped. She thrashed under his heavy weight.
“Overpowered by a body, not mind control,” he said as his breath fanned her skin. “Your nonassassin skills are sadly lacking.”
He pinned her wrists above her head, leaving her body flush against his. Katie wiggled and tugged, but Cain had the advantage of position and strength. She stopped her frantic movements. Only one option left—surprise.
She molded her lips over his, the pressure so heavy and intense she could only moan breathlessly into his mouth. The warmth of her tongue touched his, drawing her nerves guitar-string tight.
The grip on her wrists loosened, and Katie raised her hands until her fingers slid into the thickness of his hair. She arched her body and his wide palm cupped her back. Distracting Cain to throw him off took a back seat, replaced by instinctual need pounding deep within her belly and ricocheting between her legs.
Cain’s tongue continued a slow exploration of her mouth, lapping the depths, erotic as hell. Her trembling fingers brushed the expanse of his shoulders, his firm muscles jolting the tips as they passed over. Filled with untethered boldness, she ran light touches down the ridges of his firm pectorals. When her thumb flicked a pebble-hard nipple, her bodyguard growled.
Character Names: Cain and Abel from Angel Kin
Cain is a member of The Bound Ones, half-angels trained by Heaven as assassins. His supernatural power is mind control. His identical twin is Abel.
Abel is a mercenary trained by Renegades, fallen angels hunted by Heaven for their disobedience. His supernatural power is mind control. His identical twin is Cain.
Describe yourself what is your worst and best quality?
Cain: God of All, are you going to start asking me sh-t about feelings? I'm doing a favor for Tricia Skinner by even being here, but she didn't say crap about sharing. (pulls out a gun and starts cleaning it) Damn it. Okay, best quality is I kill fast and can control minds. Worst quality is patience, as in don't push your luck or I'll show you my best quality up close.
Abel: My twin answered this question? Of course he did. He's starved for attention like a stupid human pet. My best quality is completing any kill mission. I don't have a worse quality. I'm perfect, unlike my brother.
What is the one thing you wish other people knew about you?
Cain: Not a damn thing.
Abel: That I hate you and your question.
What is your biggest secret, something no one knows about?
Cain: You are one nosey human. Fine. After I was taken to Heaven so they could turn me into a killing machine, I… I had nightmares. I used to think about my family being killed. I lost my father to four warrior angels, and my mother and brother burned to death in a fire. I spent centuries dealing with that crap. Now, Abel's returned as a vengeance junkie and I'm the one who has to deal with him.
Abel: Why would I tell you? Can you remove the horrors I've been through? Can you ease the pain of loss? Do you think sharing my deepest secret will somehow redeem my soul? Grow up, human.
What are you most afraid of?
Cain: Getting in trouble for walking out of this interview. Second would be having to kill Abel. He's not right in his head or heart. He was raised by the enemy and told so many lies about me he can't even focus. If I can't make him see reason, I'll have to kill him.
Abel: My… employers have threatened to kill Cain if I don't do as they say, when they say it. He is my blood, mine to make suffer. I don't want that taken from me.
What do you want more than anything?
Cain: To go to Katie's apartment and practice my sex-god skills.
Abel: (narrows eyes and smirks) Are you as bendy as most humans? My twin is fond of the little thief he protects, but you're here with me. Alone.
What is your relationship status?
Cain: Sorry, hot stuff. I'm taken.
Abel: I see your interest. I can scent your desire. Come closer and I'll indulge your curiosity about my kind.
How would you describe your sense of fashion?
Cain: Jeans, T-shirt, and weapons. I'd say my fashion is officially epic ass kicker.
Abel: Necessary but trivial. I grow bored. Next question.
How much of a rebel are you?
Cain: Look up rebel on a wiki and you'll see my photo.
Abel: It's easy to appear rebellious when my brother is a complete weakling. I follow orders only if they coincide with my objectives.
What do you considered to be your greatest achievement?
Cain: I survived the massacre of thousands of Nephilim children. What the hell do you think?
Abel: I've not yet killed you so my patience is holding. For now.
What is your idea of happiness?
Cain: Freedom from Heaven's chain on my Grace. That's my half-angelic soul and those bastards have it on lock down. The day my team and I are rid of that crap, is the day happiness becomes more than a word to me.
Abel: There's no such thing. Next question.
What is your current state of mind?
Cain: Now you're a shrink?
Abel: Have you ever heard of psychotic break? I feel one coming on if you make further inquiries.
What is your most treasured possession?
Cain: Katie. I know that makes me a sap, and she's not a possession. She is my world and she stole my heart.
Abel: (shrugs) I may have kept a few souvenirs of my dead targets.
What is your most marked characteristic?
Cain: Nephilim and angels have silver eyes. I don't have wings like those pricks, though.
Abel: I'm identical in appearance to my twin.
What is it that you most dislike?
Cain: You ever have microwaved eggs? Dry as sh-t and I bet it tastes the same. I also hate Renegades and Heaven's angels except for Tanis. He's like a father to me.
Abel: Being controlled, which I find ironic because my talent is mind control.
Which living person do you most despise?
Cain: Right now, Abel. He's causing me a lot of problems and he's a menace to everyone.
Abel: Cain. Cain. Cain. Cain. Cain.
What is your greatest regret?
Cain: I…I didn't know Abel had survived the fire. I would have returned to our village if I could. The enemy raised him and they twisted him into a monster. I wasn't there to protect him.
Abel: Everything I once cared for was destroyed. All that's left is a brother who left me to die, thinking only of himself as he ran off to Heaven.
What is the quality you most like in a man?
Cain: Loyalty and strength. Everyone on the team has those qualities in triplicate.
Abel: A spine. I prefer opponents who don't beg for their lives.
What is the quality you most like in a woman?
Cain: Gonna let this one pass. If I say something wrong, Katie will stone me.
Abel: Next question.
If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?
Cain: I'd figure out how to control the guilt over what happened to my brother. He's a mercenary. He has no one, but I have the love of a great woman.
Abel: I have no need to change anything.
One $25 gift card to Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or iTunes. Not open to international entries.
Tricia Skinner writes urban fantasy with twist of passion. She’s a former journalist who discovered her inspiration to write fiction as an escape from “real life.” Her reading tastes include fantasy (and its subgenres), paranormal, sci-fi, and history.
When she’s not writing, Tricia is a newbie “green” practitioner, fitness procrastinator, and a technology geek. Her family includes a patient husband, a demigod son, and two Great Danes. She’s active in several writing communities and enjoys interacting with readers.