by Nalini Singh
Editor's Note: In lieu of an interview, we have an excerpt and a note from author Nalini Singh on her characters and their developing relationship.
I love romances, love the happy ever after, but quite often, I want to know more. Especially when there's a power imbalance between the couple--such as with my mortal hunter, Elena, and the immortal archangel, Raphael.
For me, their coming together is only the start of the story. After all, Elena now has to adapt to a life different and far more lethal than anything she's ever before known. As for Raphael, he has to learn to deal with a lover who refuses to accept anything but an equal partnership--when as an archangel, he's used to power and to absolute control. No one challenges Raphael...except his consort, Elena.
It's fascinating for me to watch them navigate that relationship, and I hope you feel the same way. For those of you who haven't yet started the series, please know that it is very much a romance, the focus on the exhilarating, sexy, and dangerous dance that is Elena and Raphael's relationship. But there's plenty of action too--how could it be otherwise when the heroine is a hunter and the hero an archangel?
The following excerpt comes from chapter 2 of ARCHANGEL'S LEGION, when angels start falling inexplicably from the skies of Manhattan and into the Hudson River. If you'd like to read chapter 1 first, you can find it on my website: http://www.nalinisingh.com/legion.php
Excerpt from Chapter 2 of Archangel's Legion by Nalini Singh
(Part of the Guild Hunter Series)
"I have him!" she called out to Raphael as he came in, an angel in his arms.
"He's not breathing, his back is broken, and his heart has stopped." Putting the lithely muscled angel on the clifftop, Raphael swept off, but his mind remained connected to her own. Tell Montgomery to take medical measures--the male is too young to survive otherwise.
I will. Hauling one of the angel's thankfully unbroken arms over her shoulders--ignoring the conventional teachings about broken backs because this wasn't a mortal--she gritted her teeth and got to her feet. The victim's shattered body was soaked from his fall, his wings dead weight. It was as well that as a born hunter, she'd always been stronger than most humans. Her growing immortality had only cemented that strength.
Still, she was glad to see Montgomery race out to take the angel's weight on the other side, neither one of them flinching as two birds hit their backs hard enough to bruise. "Medical measures," she managed to get out as they traversed the distance to the house as fast as possible; she hadn't known until now that there were any medical measures--at least of the ordinary kind--that could be applied to angels.
More of the household staff, and a number of unaffected angels from other parts of the Enclave, ran or flew past them as they took the injured angel in through doors that led directly into the central core. The space that a couple of minutes earlier had been all shining wooden floors, an elegant statuette set against the wall, was now a temporary hospital.
A young vampire Montgomery had taken on as his apprentice was throwing down large futons that must've come out of storage, and a slender angel--Sivya--who was normally in charge of the kitchens, was snapping open a large black leather bag that looked like an old-fashioned medical kit.
As soon as they laid the angel on a futon, Sivya stabbed a large-bore needle directly into his heart and depressed the plunger. Elena had a thousand questions, but now wasn't the time to ask them, Montgomery beside her as they raced back out. When she saw wings of silver-blue rising into the air after dropping off a victim, she felt an intense sense of relief...mingled with horror as she realized exactly how many winged bodies floated in the murky waters of the Hudson.
Another bird hit her as they ran, the beak carving a line down her face, but she shook it off and kept going. On their second trip inside, she heard a cough, saw the first angel they'd rescued retching on his side. His left wing and legs were mangled--but at least he was alive.
Leaving their current charge in Sivya's hands, she ran back out with Montgomery at her side. It felt like an eternity, but she would later find out the actual hell of what came to be known as the Falling lasted five short minutes. Then the birds stopped dropping from the skies . . . and so did the angels.
Copyright 2013 by Nalini Singh
B:Thank you for sharing such a fascinating excerpt!
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