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Never Tempt a Demon: A Daughter of Eve, #3

Never Tempt a Demon: A Daughter of Eve, #3

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Never Tempt a Demon: A Daughter of Eve, #3

Length:
238 pages
3 hours
Released:
Feb 25, 2019
ISBN:
9781386971344
Format:
Book

Description

The rules for demon slaying are simple.
Rule #3: Never tempt a demon.
...With a promise you can't keep.

Surrounded by her great-grandfather's demon bodyguards, Lyn's days of running from would-be assassin angels finally slow down.

For about .04 seconds.

When knowledge of her divine ancestry reaches a secret sect known as the Sons of Solomon, a not-so-new enemy rises from the bowels of Hell, sending Lyn, Sam, and Angie into a fight for their lives.

As Lyn's role in what could very well be Armageddon comes to light, one certain truth becomes obvious: Good and evil are not black and white.

The rules go out the window in this third installment of the riveting Daughter of Eve series by award-winning urban fantasy author J.D. Brown.

Perfect for fans of Darynda Jones, Illona Andrews, and Izzy Shows.

One-click your copy now.

Released:
Feb 25, 2019
ISBN:
9781386971344
Format:
Book

About the author

Find Dark Heirloom on Smashwords at: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/160667 Author Bio: J.D. Brown graduated from the International Academy of Design and Technology with a Bachelor Degree in Fine Arts. She currently lives in Wisconsin with her two Pomeranians. Growing up in the suburbs of Chicago, her writing is influenced by the multicultural urban society of her youth which she continues to visit each summer. J.D. loves paranormal characters; from vampires and werewolves, demons and angels, to witches and ghost. Her writings are often a combination of suspense and romance. J.D.’s books are available in e-book formats from Muse It Up Publishing Inc. and major e-book retailers. She loves to hear from readers. You can reach her via email to DarkHeirloom@gmail.com or visit her website at http://authorjdbrown.com


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A very special Thank You goes to Street Team member

Pattie Cassar

for the idea behind Ayah the demon knight.

1

The Prince of Greed

Belial stalked along the corridor leading to the advisory room of his brother’s domain. The cobblestones beneath his feet shook with the weight of each thunderous step. He tossed his shield aside and shucked his breastplate, not caring where they landed. The castle minions scrambled to gather them as the wraiths in the shadows licked his wounds, their tiny tongues like dew drops against his bulging muscles.

The scrapes were laughably shallow. All the best competitors had gone to the mortal realm to aid in the seizing of the Gate. A whisper of jealousy flushed through him. How I long for a true battle.

Too soon, he knew. The Desolate Prince would not expel his energy traveling the realms just to stand around twiddling his thumbs under the command of that blasted Lucifer. He would bide his time. War would soon be upon them. And in Heaven, no less!

Belial let the promise of spilling Heavenly fire drive his spirits forward.

The demon prince rolled his shoulders and flexed his biceps, giving his groveling admirers what they wanted. The wraiths kissed away all trace of soot and ichor from his flesh, making him clean by the time he reached the opening to the advisory room. A grin touched his gnarled mouth but vanished as his brothers’ disgruntled voices echoed from the chasm he was about to enter.

...Probably sparring in the pits again, he heard Pythius say.

The only thing sparring is my patience, said Mammon.

Belial clenched his jaw. Ice crystals formed over his knuckles as his breath visibly puffed past his nostrils. They were septuplets—all seven of them birthed at once through the will of their father—but Mammon had appointed himself the eldest. Self-seeking shit.

Belial hadn’t been interested over the details of the coming war. He cared only that it occurred; that he was given every chance possible to sink his teeth into Yahweh’s precious children and shred them limb from limb. His attendance at this meeting was merely formality and Belial intended to keep it as such—unless Mammon pushed his buttons.

Give him another minute, said Pythius, even though his favorite brother didn’t sound all that concerned.

No need. Belial strode into the room and scanned his siblings. They sat at a long table made of bone and basalt.

Finally, Oeillet muttered.

Belial eyed the demon seated at the left end of the table. Oeillet slouched in his chair with a goblet between his claws. His gaze was on his drink, swirling the contents as though he were more interested in getting this meeting over with than any care to his brother’s whereabouts. That was how things had always been; the seven of them managed co-existence by giving each other a wide breadth. They tended to their individual domains and stayed out of each-others’ business.

But it is true we each grow restless wanting more than this wasteland of a realm.

He supposed his brothers had their own reasons for supporting Lucifer, but none of them were as motivated as their so-called ‘eldest’ sibling, the Prince of Greed.

Belial slid his gaze to the center of the table, where Mammon sat facing him. The demon’s red gaze assessed him, raking over every inch of his limbs and torso, searching. For what? Belial had spent a lifetime wondering.

A reason not to dispose of me, I presume. Belial didn’t know why Mammon despised him so. Only that there would be no love lost should he ever take his final breath.

Belial approached the only empty chair that remained. It stood directly across from Mammon—an unfortunate price for one’s delay. He gripped the backrest, dragged the chair unnecessarily far from the table, and then dropped into the seat with a heaviness that caused the bone legs to creak. Slouching, the Prince of Desolation crossed his arms over his broad chest and spread his legs wide—forcing Pythius and Levi to scowl as they scooted aside to accommodate him. You summon, dear brother?

Mammon narrowed his gaze as ribbons of gray-white smoke wafted from the demon’s flesh. Belial smirked, purposely goading his brother, but Mammon drew a breath and turned his attention to the others, the smoke puttering out like the ashes at the end of a candle wick.

My brothers, Mammon began with an air of regality that always irked Belial. I have spoken to Dantalion. They have the Daughter. His premonition is coming to fruition.

You called us here for that? Next time send a minion. Oeillet rose to his feet.

It is not without interruptions. Mammon signaled for his brother to sit. Oeillet obeyed.

Like a well-trained pup. Belial scoffed.

Mammon eyed him a moment then continued, This Daughter is not like the others. It would seem Beatrice Rose desired her progeny ignorant of her birthright. She knows not of the Gate, her duty to Heaven, nor the full extent of her powers.

What are you implying? Someone—perhaps Moloch—demanded.

Can she open the Gate? said Levi.

Mammon raised a hand to silence them. Dantalion assures me she is able. She merely needs time to—

An uproar of opposition came from his brothers.

Force her, was the suggestion most offered.

Brothers, hold your tongues. Mammon stood, commanding the room. His siblings quieted, but Belial’s mind jumped to be heard.

She is Lucifer’s kin. The words tumbled from his temper before he could stop himself. He had minions watching her. He suspected they all did. Trust was not a thing the princes gave easily, least of all to each other. He suspected his siblings already knew about Lucifer’s relationship with his great-granddaughter, but ... It bears discussion.

The room had gone silent at Belial’s outburst, and he stood to meet his eldest brother eye to eye. "He protects her from Legionary angels using our army. Expending demon lives."

As he should, said Mammon. Should she parish, this war will be over before it starts. She is our last chance at opening the Gate. Let us not forget that.

So we make her open it, said Pythius. Now.

Mammon shook his head. Patience, my brothers. Dantalion warns me this war must be cultivated delicately. He has foreseen our victory, but only if the Daughter opens the Gate through her own will. It is true angel blood runs through her veins, but she is still merely human—still malleable. Dantalion ensures her cooperation will come with time.

How much time? Levi asked.

Mammon faced him and offered a curt grin. The Duke suggests a month.

Groans came from Levi, Pythius, and Oeillet.

’Tis but a drop compared to the thousands of years we have waited, Moloch offered. The others slowly nodded in agreement.

But Belial’s rage only grew. Frost covered his forearms, climbing his biceps. Unless they are deceiving us.

Mammon glared at him and his eyes glowed bright red, matching the illumination of the veins over his knuckles. Sit down, Belial.

He protects her Guardian as well as Samael. He protects his army. Using our demons instead of his Fallen to fend off the Legionaries—surely I am not the only one who suspects the Commander’s loyalties. Once the war is won, who will truly sit on Heaven’s throne, I wonder?

Enough! Mammon exploded in a burst of Hellfire. The heat sent Belial reeling back with one arm thrown over his face for protection. The flames could not harm him. At least, not mortally. But Belial preferred the cold.

Mammon let his fire settle into a few small flames, his robes completely disintegrated, his flesh blackened and smoking. "Do you take me for a fool? The generals have their orders. Once the Gate is open, we will join the attack and our army will march under my banner. Yahweh’s angels will bow to me. All of them."

Layers of ice slowly encased Belial, restricting his movements. He flexed his fingers and winced at the dull ache nettling his joints. If he didn’t temper his rage, he would soon freeze to the floor.

Mammon scanned him and laughed. Belial the Worthless, haven’t you learned your lesson?

Levi and Oeillet stifled their chuckles, but not quietly enough. Their teasing cut into him like a razor. His failure to kill Evelyn Conway the first time had shamed him to the ends of Hell. Even lesser demons had mocked him. A wound Mammon continues to salt.

Belial’s knees momentarily locked.

Stupid ice!

With a growl, Belial gripped his chair and threw it across the room. He didn’t wait for Mammon’s reaction as he stormed out. I’ll show him.

The demon prince waved a clawed hand before him and ripped open a rift in the Hell dimension. Walking through the portal, he appeared in the great hall of his own castle. Being in his domain calmed him enough to shake the stiffness from his limbs and joints, but his rage would not settle completely until Mammon felt every ounce of pain he’d inflicted. And more.

Belial gathered his energy into his left palm and used the claw on his index finger to carve a sigil into the air directly above a six-pointed star engraved in the stone floor. The sigil materialized before him; flickering black lines that dripped ice as cold as the cosmos. He voiced his command into the summons.

Bring me the Son of Solomon.

2

Peeping Demons

Lyn Conway sat cross-legged on her bedroom carpet wearing a baggy Suicide Squad T-shirt and leopard print pajama shorts. The lights were off, and the shades were drawn across the lone window. A circle of salt and tea candles dimly illuminated the space in front of her where she firmly held a squiggly Kimaris demon.

Lyn squelched her lips, attempting to remember the chant that had been written in Gran’s journal. Bind-o demon-o!

The Kimaris, whose biology resembled a black pot-bellied goat the size of a small dog with a scaly fish tail, stopped squirming and looked at her.

Lyn’s breath hitched in surprise. It worked?

The goat tilted its head as though in askance. The creatures were intelligent but didn’t have the correct vocal cords to manage a lot of speech, so they tended to save their breaths for emergencies.

Lyn debated taking her hands off the demon to see if the binding spell had really worked when the door opened, and the overhead light flicked on. Wincing at the sudden brightness, Lyn hissed at the angel that stood in her bedroom doorway.

Angie folded her arms over her chest and jutted her hip to the side. Oh good, you’re awake. Your shift starts in an hour.

Turn off the lights. I’m in the middle of a very important experiment here. The Kimaris demon licked a portion of the salt, vomited into Lyn’s lap, and then pranced out of the room, bushing past Angie’s brass wings. Lyn frowned. Drat.

Angie rolled her eyes. Blow out those candles before you burn the place down.

"Yes, mom," said Lyn, but Angie had turned and disappeared into the hall without paying any attention to Lyn’s sarcasm. Geesh. I thought living with her would be fun.

Lyn blew out the candles and went to the bathroom. She showered with two peeping Kimaris demons, then went back to her room to moisturize and dress. Digging around for her deodorant stick, she found the packaging chewed to damp bits under the bed.

Aw, man. Which one of you ate my deodorant? She stood and shook what remained of the plastic goop at the five goat-demons in her room. Another dozen had already laid waste to her living room, and it wasn’t even noon yet. The little buggers came and went as they pleased, and though they couldn’t properly digest anything other than human souls, it never seemed to stop them from sampling everything she owned.

Coffee? Angie handed her a piping hot mug as Lyn entered the kitchen.

She took a long sip, smacked her lips as the savory java warmed her throat, and then turned a serious eye on her best friend. Can I bind you?

Angie turned and spewed a mouthful of coffee into the kitchen sink. Good thing she was already standing next to it. She wiped her lips and arched her brow at Lyn. I don’t think I’m comfortable with BDSM.

Lyn’s gaze widened. What?

Huh?

Never mind.

Work. Angie poured herself another cup. Thirty minutes.

Oh, all right, Lyn sighed. But in the meantime, I need you to Google this cat.

What cat?

Lyn pulled her cell phone from her pocket and opened the pictures application. She tapped on a photograph of a reward poster to enlarge it and then handed the phone to Angie.

Her Guardian angel wrinkled her nose. Are you sure that’s a cat?

Not entirely, Lyn admitted.

The image depicted a mop of wiry orange fur that stuck out in all directions with one green eye and one yellow eye. The poor creature honestly looked like a cross between a poodle and a gremlin. Even its whiskers were curly. But more importantly ...

Ten-thousand-dollars? Angie gasped, her eyes wide as she scanned the promised reward printed across the image in big, red block letters.

Yep, Lyn confirmed. More than enough to get your car back. And Gran’s journal.

She had left the book—along with a few other items—in Angie’s Lincoln the night Jackson had tried to arrest her. When they went back for the car, it was gone. Impounded by the Paradise Police Department. Lyn had tried to get the Lincoln back from the impoundment center multiple times, but the sketchy employees wouldn’t release the car to anyone other than the owner.

Unfortunately, Angie couldn’t claim the car herself given her current predicament. Angie’s human body had been shot in the chest with an adstrumite arrowhead and burnt to a crispy nothingness. Fortunately, Lyn’s B.F.F. was able to come back to life in her angelic form—which was stunningly beautiful, but annoyingly invisible to everyone in the world.

Well, everyone except Lyn.

Aside from the fact that Gran’s journal held all kinds of sentimental value, Lyn needed the binding spell. Dantalion, a very nasty Duke of Hell, was still at large, and Lyn was determined to make him pay for the torture he put her through. Plus, she was hoping her gran had written something—anything—that might give her some leverage over her great-grandfather, Lucifer.

Yes, that Lucifer. The Morning Star. Commander of the Fallen. And all-around manipulative prick.

Then there was Samael; the Archangel of Death turned Fallen. Lyn had accidently saved his life, bringing him back from the brink with good old-fashioned CPR. Her heroism had bound him to her soul. Sam couldn’t hurt Lyn without hurting himself, which meant she was safe with him, but that didn’t mean she trusted him.

Lyn had read Gran’s journal dozens of times. She didn’t remember a single page mentioning angels or Heaven, but she had only ever been half paying attention. Gran had kept a lot of secrets from Lyn in an attempt to erase the Conway family curse, but Lyn refused to believe her beloved great-grandmother would truly leave her to fend for herself once she knew Lyn had the sight. She must have left some clue for me. Right?

The screen of Lyn’s cell phone darkened, and Angie handed it to her with a sigh. You’re not going to find this cat.

Lyn scoffed. Not with that attitude, I won’t.

"No, I mean you don’t need to find that cat. Every cent I had before losing my mortal body is yours. You have all my credit cards, my bank account numbers, my pin."

Which will hold us over while I look for this cat. Lyn slid her phone into her pocket. I appreciate the help, Ang, but you’re not a millionaire. Eventually your accounts will dry up, and the debit collectors will come calling. I have to keep earning a living, babe. Not to mention FASFA will eventually want their student loan back.

You can always just sell my house, said Angie.

I need to do that regardless, said Lyn. I’m not paying taxes on a mansion we can’t even use.

Angie had moved into Lyn’s one-room apartment insisting they couldn’t be too careful now that Yahweh—yes that Yahweh—had put a price on Lyn’s head. But Lyn knew the real reason her B.F.F. was avoiding her house. Angie hadn’t gone back even to pack some clothes. Because there was a price over her head, too. She was breaking the rules by protecting Lyn.

They were a regular Thelma

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