Even the darkest angel’s heart can be melted.
For five thousand years, Azrael’s heart has been cold like any other angel’s. Now there is one being who has warmed his soul. Repeatedly he has tried to comfort Brenna, but she continually pushes him away. Enough is enough. Souls cry out to him in the dark for peace. But can he truly turn his back on the vampire he finds himself drawn to?
The Angel of Death has tried to steer Brenna through the nightmare her life has become. Struggling to deal with Veronica’s death and her tottering feelings for Azrael, she discovers a vampire serial killer is murdering witches around Boston. Now her staff is the next target.
In order to track the killer, she needs Azrael’s help. Can she obtain his forgiveness after she rejects him? How can she woo the man she loves and show him she truly wants redemption? Will the serial killer complete his goal and call upon the father of all vampires, the devil, himself.
“Feeling sorry for yourself again, are we?”
I glanced up and saw the Angel of Death perched on the railing of the fire escape. He rocked back and forth, keeping perfect balance. Perhaps his wings held him in place, or maybe there was something on his feet that made him stick to the thin iron. I used to be able to see his wings, blacker than the night even in the dark, but now I couldn’t even see their outline. His beauty used to captivate me. Easter lily pale skin and black eyes that held the universe. My heart used to stop at the sight of him, and he would be the only thing in my world. I should have been flattered to have a celestial being giving me personal attention, but none of that mattered anymore. It was just him looking down on me.
“Now what do you want?”
I felt a slight chill on my shoulder from the pressure of his touch running along the nape of my neck. His fingers twirled a strand of my hair for an instant, stroking my pulse point before I squirmed out of his reach. There was a time I’d thought I cared for the angel, but how I talked myself into that was beyond me.
My fingers changed to talons and I turned to face him, but he wasn’t there.
Do not think you can be rid of me so easily, Brenna. How many times have we danced this same dance? Deep down you do not wish to harm me. It is only grief that motivates you now. Stop your mourning and let your friends back into your life. That is all I wish to be to you. I am not your enemy. I was only doing my duty when I took Veronica. You know this.
His presence was close, and even though I couldn’t see him, his voice echoed in my mind. This was how it had been when I first met him. He would only speak to my thoughts and never with his voice. I used to love hearing his whispers, like wind moving through a belfry, caressing my heart.
“You took the only thing I loved. My only reason for living. And when I begged you to take me, you wouldn’t release me from this hell. Why do I give a shit about you or the others? They don’t care. All that matters is her. With or without your help, at least I’ll be able to talk to her.”
I felt a long pause in my mind. It seemed the angel was sighing.
Brenna, you censure me when it is yourself who truly is to blame. Those you condemn have all wished to assist you, but you push them away. They can only take so much. If you do not let others around your wall of grief, then you will have nothing and be nothing. I am not here to hinder you. Only to help. I have tried to coax you through the pain. From my understanding, that is how mortals support one another when dealing with anguish. They see one another through hard times. I am only trying to do this with you. Why do you push me away when—?
I stared at the angel, who had reappeared sitting on the small stoop. For a moment, my heart heard him. “When what?” I whispered, grasping for some unnamable feeling that caught my breath.
The angel looked at me with dark, normal eyes. Usually they were filled with stars and planets. His power reached into my soul the longer he stared. I sensed the spark I’d felt when I thought he could tell me what I was, but then I saw his true self—not a beautiful angel, but a skeleton, and I knew that he was Death. My rage returned, and nothing mattered anymore except trying to contact Veronica.
The angel stood up. “Nothing,” he muttered. His gaze was filled with sorrow, but before he could speak, Xavier stepped onto the balcony, passing through the angel who dissolved in a wisp of smoke.