The Passion Season (Covalent Series)
Published by: Fairhill Publishing LLC
Expected Publication Date: March 20, 2016
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance
Number of pages: 303 in ePub
Word Count: 117,259
Cover Artist: Damonza
In loving her, he breaks laws that have existed for millennia. In loving him, she overcomes her pain, but to discover his true identity would shred her reality.
He is Barakiel. Warrior. Exile. Hopeless romantic. Barakiel is Covalent, a race of ancient beings who use their great power to keep the elemental forces of Creation and Destruction in Balance. The Covalent Council exiled Barakiel to the Earthly Realm as the price of the treachery of his father, Lucifer, who wages perpetual war against it. Lucifer also relentlessly pursues his son. The Council thinks Lucifer views his son’s power as a threat, but Barakiel knows his father seeks to destroy even the memory of love.
She is Alexandra “Zan” O’Gara. FBI Agent. Army veteran. Recovering drunk. Zan’s troubled past left her with little interest in men, but she had never encountered anyone like the stunning Rainer Barakiel. Zan believes Rainer is a wealthy businessman with expertise in edged weapons who can help her with a case. From the moment she meets him she wants him more than she’s ever wanted anything, but her intense attraction is as frightening as it is thrilling.
This is their love story. As Zan’s deepening feelings for Rainer lead her to confront her emotional damage, he struggles to meet the demands of his home world so he will be free to love her, and to reveal his true nature. Through the gruesome crime that first brought Zan to his door, Barakiel learns that his presence in the Earthly Realm has placed some of its most vulnerable citizens in danger. Compelled to protect them, he undertakes a series of duties he may not survive, even as Zan rescues him from centuries of a deadened heart.
From the prologue
The humped limestone splintered with each blow of Barakiel’s fist. Cracks raced through the layers until the rock was reduced to rubble. The warrior expelled a ragged scream. It was too easy. He had destroyed the outcropping in less than ten minutes and still his murderous agitation would not leave him. He stared down at the surf that crashed at the base of the cliff.
If I jumped, perhaps I would become as senseless as the rocks that broke my body. The Council should have killed me. It is cruel, to deprive me of purpose. It is dangerous.
Barakiel did not want to leave Hibernia. He had come to love this wild, green place, but he feared for the brothers who had welcomed him. The monks of Corcomroe Abbey led quiet lives in harmony with nature. The warrior had tried to do the same, but he felt Destruction growing within him.
I admired these brothers once. Now I envy them their purpose. Now I dream of wringing their necks.
Even if he cast his body on the rocks below, he would not die, and he refused to die at the hands of a demon. He stared at the storm-laden clouds as a harsh wind drove them south, hiding then revealing the sun.
You will not claim me father. I do not want to hurt anyone. I will meet the Stream.
The Stream was the boundary of the Creative Realm. The Covalent believed this realm was the catalyst of their origin, but they understood little about it beyond a sense of constant motion and furious power. To enter—to meet the Stream—was to be absorbed by its fearsome energy, never to return. Those who did so were usually far older or far weaker than Barakiel, but he knew anyone would think his choice a valid one, given his aimlessness and isolation.
“What in the name of Balance are you doing all the way out here?” Pellus raised his voice to be heard over the wind as he crested the top of the hill. “I was looking all over for you. You were supposed to meet me in our usual spot.”
Barakiel snapped his head to stare at the adept. Pellus stopped a few feet from the warrior, concern etched on his face.
“The agitation. No better?”
“It is worse.”
“I suspected as much. You grow more powerful with each season.”
“Power?” Barakiel laughed bitterly. “More like impotent rage.”
“Remember what your mother taught you. Like all warriors, you have a compulsion toward violence, an innate need to take up your sword. And you are a Warrior of the Rising, descended from the first Covalent who were forged from the Creative and Destructive Forces as they rose and swelled into the Void. The blood of ancient warriors pounds through your veins. Your subconscious is on fire with their memories. You are a born weapon.”
“A useless weapon!” Barakiel shouted, looking about wildly before fixing his burning blue eyes on the sea. “A weapon that will turn upon the innocent. You must take me to the Creative Realm, Pellus. I will meet the Stream.”
“What?” Pellus stepped up to grasp the warrior’s arm. “I will not. I would rather meet the Stream myself than allow a warrior like you to waste himself.” He tugged on Barakiel’s arm. “Look at me! I know you are struggling with your power in a way that I cannot understand, but give me a chance to help you. The Stream is for ancient Covalent who are weary of life. For weak Covalent who are a burden to the citizens. Not for you.”
“I am like him, Pellus.” Horror swept Barakiel’s face. “I am just like my father.”
“You are not.” Pellus strode toward the edge of the cliff. When he turned back his eyes were bright with anger. “You have been deprived of Balance. If you were home, you would wield your sword in service to the Realm. Selflessness, honor and duty would channel your energy.”
The cawing of a distant flock of birds came over the sea, carried by the wind. Barakiel watched them fly. He wished he could lose himself among them.
“When I was small my mother taught me about the Guardians,” he said, his eyes never leaving the birds. “The ancient Warriors of the Rising who gave up their lives to become one with the Covalent Realm. She told me how they used the power of their collective minds to create the Turning, the band of pure energy that surrounds and protects our home. She told me that without the Guardians’ sacrifice, the elemental forces would have crushed us. I know their blood runs in my veins, Pellus. They are the highest of heroes. I feel ashamed when I think of them.”
“Do not feel ashamed. Your exile is not your fault.”
“It makes no difference whose fault it is. How long will it be before I lose control and turn to violence for amusement? I am Lucifer in waiting.”
Pellus stared at Barakiel for a moment, his emotions seemingly shoved back wherever he kept them. “Your father was a great leader before he was consumed by Destruction,” he said. “You could be as well.”
The warrior bent to pick up a piece of shattered limestone, then he flung it out to sea. It traveled so far he could not see where it fell to the water.
“My mother could always make him laugh.” Barakiel smiled sadly. “His laughter would shake the walls of our chambers.”
“We all grieve for Lucifer,” Pellus said in a gentle voice. “He was laid low by his own arrogance and impatience.”
About the Author:
Libby Doyle is the pen name of an attorney and former journalist who took a walk around the corporate world and didn’t like it. Considering she’s written an extravagant yarn filled with sex and violence, she thought a pen name would be prudent. She also thinks it’s kind of fun.
Libby grew up on the East Coast of the United States. She attended college in the 1980s and became immersed in the underground music scene. She met talented people and troubled people. She met people who taught her what it means to be your own person. In the 1990s, she went back to school to get a master’s degree in journalism. Before beginning work in her chosen field, an attack of wanderlust set her traveling. For all that Libby loves books, she believes nothing compares to the education of travel.
After her wanderings, she returned to her career. For more than a decade, Libby worked as a journalist, until her interests led her to law school. She kept her full-time job while attending law school at night, the most brutal experience she’s ever had. She cursed her own stupidity countless times as her body and mind became sick with exhaustion, but she’s glad she did it.
Libby knows she’s a lucky woman. She’s had countless adventures, memories that feed her imagination. She stood atop a hill in Connemara in a cold wind, watching sunlight sparkle off the pristine sea below. She crested a trail after a grueling hike to find the glory of the Continental Divide spread before her. She was followed by a howler monkey in a Mexican jungle, shared the midday meal with Buddhist monks in Korea, and got pummeled by an opponent in a martial arts test in Japan. She trekked for days among the Himalayas, mountains so high and timeless they made her feel completely insignificant.
She’s married to a man who is funny and kind and patient enough to listen to her chatter on about her characters. They’re not even real, but she feels like they’re her friends. She’s confident they’ll keep you entertained. Through her fanciful tale, she hopes they speak to you.
This music was chosen by Libby Doyle as a soundtrack for the novel. Some songs reflect the state of mind or aspirations of the characters. Some pieces are performed by the characters as part of the story, and others are meant to reflect the plot. Libby hopes you enjoy them.
Love Reign O’er Me – The Who
Cannonball – The Breeders
Burn – Nine Inch Nails
Sympathy for the Devil – The Rolling Stones
Rosary Sonata n. 6, The Agony in the Gethsemane Garden – Heinrich Biber — played by Le Bizzarrie Armoniche (Riccardo Minasi, violinist)
Indiscipline – King Crimson (live, feat. Adrian Belew)
Brendan — Fugazi
Top of the World – Shonen Knife
Don’t Let Your Deal Go Down – Lester Flat and Earl Scruggs
Caprice 24 – Paganini — played by Hilary Hahn
Nasty – Janet Jackson
La Cumbia Campesina – Luis Ornelas
There Goes My Gun – The Pixies
Sex Machine – James Brown
Perfect Day – Lou Reed
The Weirdness – The Stooges
Salt Creek – The Tony Rice Unit
Chaconne, Partita No. 2 – Johann Sebastian Bach – played by Hilary Hahn
Dark Road – Sarah Jarosz
My Idea of Fun – The Stooges
War Pigs – Black Sabbath
Angel of Death – Slayer
To Be Over – Yes
Love is Blindness – Jack White
The World’s a Mess; It’s in My Kiss – X