God of the Sea, book 2 in the Irish Gods series, tells the tale of Ellie Selkirk―elementary school teacher, bartender, and one-time Seer. She has left the world of gods and magic behind and settled into an ordinary life. Gods are just too much trouble, and even worse, they’re dangerous.
Her life—and summer vacation—is upended when she meets Gareth Keir, front man for the band DeDanu and god of nothing. Intrigued by Gareth, Ellie decides to see where this romance will go, thinking it’ll amount to little more than a summer fling. Fate has other plans, though, and when Gareth’s brother, Declan, stumbles into the scene, injured and chased by Hunters, Ellie must decide how far she is willing to go make the man she loves the god he is destined to be, even if it means revisiting her own dark past.
There was a particular kind of hell experienced exclusively by elementary school teachers—indoor recess. This January had been worse than most. It would rain, snow, or sleet just enough to keep everyone inside, but not enough for a snow day. The teachers wished the weather would make up its mind.
Ellie Selkirk tried to make the best of the situation because she felt bad for her third-graders. They just wanted a chance to run and play. For the past two weeks, Ellie had organized indoor games that would keep them busy and active, but this Friday, she wasn’t up to the challenge. Her head felt stuffy, her throat was beginning to hurt, and by quarter of one, all she wanted was a chance to sit down. Her class had spent this week studying Scotland, a subject near and dear to Ellie’s heart. Today was Burns Day, which officially celebrated the poet and his works. The kids read a few appropriate poems by Robert Burns, tried bannock, and the bravest tasted haggis. The activities spilled over into recess, and a few kids endeavored to play the toy bagpipes—which thankfully did not work—a few attempted a jig, and the rest drew or painted.
Since everyone was busy, Ellie stole to her desk and took a sip of her tea.
Ugh. It’s cold. Of course.
Her gaze slid to the calendar her mother had given her for Christmas. Each month depicted a different Scottish castle, and her mom had written a countdown of days until Ellie’s flight left. She would spend most of the summer touring and sketching the country she most wanted to see.
A commotion in the far corner of the room dragged Ellie from her reverie. “Dummy, boys don’t wear skirts.” She looked up in time to see Braden snatch a paper from under Lorena’s crayon.
“We don’t use words that hurt.” Her teacher voice made everyone stop and stare.
Michael turned around, a guilty look on his face. Then he pointed to the boy standing next to him. Braden waved the paper. “Sorry, Lorena, but I’m right. Boys don’t wear skirts.” Lorena just sat with her head bowed.
Ellie took the drawing from his hand. Judging from the messy bun held up by an oversized paintbrush, it had to be a picture of Ellie because she often put her hair up using whatever was handy. In the drawing, she stood with a male figure in what might have been a skirt, if not for the riot of color creating a vivid and outlandish plaid. She frowned at the boy. “Braden, you know better. That’s not a skirt. It’s a kilt. How many pictures like this have we seen this week?”
Braden crossed his arms. “Tartans aren’t purple and yellow and green.”
Ellie straightened so she towered over him. “Modern ones are. Besides, this is Lorena’s picture. She can make the tartan whatever color she wants.”
“But, Ms. Selkirk, you don’t have a boyfriend.”
“True, but who said that’s meant to be my boyfriend?”
Michael pointed at Lorena.
“I said he will be her boyfriend.” Lorena still didn’t look up
Braden’s eyes grew wide.
Lorena was an odd duck. She had a habit of saying things out of the blue―things that often came true. As a kindergartner, she’d told Brielle Nelson that she would lose her tooth eating an enchilada, and she later did. Last year, she told Mrs. Leighty that her child would be a boy, even though the doctor insisted it was going to be a girl. Sam Leighty was brought home from the hospital to a pink nursery.
“You say this will be my boyfriend? That’s fascinating. I like blonds.” The kilted figure had a mass of spiky yellow hair. Lorena looked up and smiled.
Ellie turned to the boys. “Gentlemen, you have fifteen minutes left of recess. Why don’t you go build something?” She watched them scamper off to the block corner.
She studied the drawing, and in it, she could see the beginning of a background, and it was clear the kilt wasn’t finished. She knelt down so that she was eye to eye with Lorena. “Your picture isn’t done. Would you like to finish it using my pencils?” Ellie kept a full set of high-end colored pencils behind her desk.
Lorena brightened and nodded. “Yes, please.”
“Go and get the ones you need. Be sure to put them back properly when you are done, and Lorena, may I see this when you are finished?”
Lorena nodded again, then headed for the desk. The child rarely said anything, which made her predictions all that more impressive. Ellie stood and went to check on the other students. After making a circuit of the room, she glanced up at the clock. Only two more hours to go.