Turquoise Morning Press and to hold that beautiful book in my hands was the best. But now, with Mac Liam so close to its release date, I am finding it hard to describe this feeling.
For one, I can now say I have written two books. Don't get me wrong, writing one book is a huge feat, but to know I have finished another is quite a revelation. I have wanted this dream for so long and having two books under my belt really makes it seem more like a career than a fly-by-night hobby.
And so to celebrate this grand moment, I'd love to share an excerpt with you.
Mac Liam: Emerald Isle Trilogy Book 2
By Renee Vincent
Turquoise Morning Press
“What are you afraid of?” Breandán asked.
Mara’s gaze jumped to his, but she didn’t answer him in the beginning. Instead, she pressed the wadded up linen upon his brow, trying to stop the bleeding with pressure. She held it for some time before she found words to speak. “I was afraid Tait was going to kill you.”
He smiled, appreciative of her concern, but she didn’t understand him. He reached up and covered her hand, helping her to press the linens harder against his brow. “Nay, I mean what are you afraid of now?”
Mara swallowed and glanced at Breandán’s hand clutching hers, her mind caught in a whirlwind. The whole time Tait and Breandán were fighting, she couldn’t help but feel terrified, especially after seeing so much blood pour from Breandán’s eye. She knew neither wouldn’t walk out of the skirmish without some sort of injury—cuts and black eyes, or even a bruised pride. But she had no idea she would feel so much more when it came to Breandán’s safety.
Once she had seen the abuse Breandán had received from Tait’s first blow, and the struggle he endured from then on, she was beside herself with worry, especially after seeing the look in Tait’s eyes when he drew his dagger. She was utterly panic-stricken knowing Tait had every intent to kill Breandán on the spot. Had it not been for Tait lying horrifyingly lifeless on her longhouse floor, she probably would have run up and embraced Breandán right there.
Crazy as that may sound, she had this nonsensical urge to kiss him now that they were all alone.
She closed her eyes, trying to sort out her scrambling emotions.
“You can tell me,” Breandán encouraged her softly, his other hand now upon her face.
She opened her eyes as she felt his tender touch across her cheekbone, his words echoing in her ears while, together, they still held pressure to his brow.
“I am afraid…” she began, trying to ignore the warmth flushing her skin from the neck up. But even as she listened to the words she wanted to say next in her head, they still didn’t sound right. She tried another way. “I think I want to kiss you. I think. But…I am afraid. I am afraid when I close my eyes, all I will see is Dægan. And ‘tis not fair to you. I want not to hurt you.”
Breandán stroked a piece of loose hair from her face and smiled, which almost seemed to represent astonishment for her wanting to kiss him rather than happiness. She watched that thought tumble around in his head for a bit, not knowing what he’d do or say next. She assumed he’d retract both hands from her and slip back into the reserved gentleman he had always been. But strangely, he didn’t seem interested in letting her go, still holding tight to the hand upon his wound.
“Is that all you are afraid of?” he asked, his eyes deeply gazing into hers.
Her words failed her now. Flat out failed her as his stare captured her. He was such a beautiful man with his dark hair and light eyes, his touch rippling through her body, and she nearly fell limp. She could only nod her head.
Breandán released his left hand from hers and brought it up to meet the other, though she remained holding the linens above his eye. Tenderly, he clasped her face, his thumbs caressing her ever so lightly. “If you fear you will only see Dægan when you close your eyes, then leave them open.”
Her heart stopped.
Her breath caught as he drew near, his eyes falling on her lips. He was going to kiss her. He was actually going to kiss her and she hadn’t the will to stop him. At that moment, she was like bread dough in his hands and nothing else mattered but what he was about to do.
She wanted this.
Wanted it more now that he was pulling her closer.
She felt chills crawl up her spine and a heat pooling at her core, barely remembering how those sensations had once felt, but liked their sudden return all the same. She only wished she knew what she was doing, wished she had a better hold of her emotions.
He was so close to pressing his lips to hers that she could smell his masculine scent as clear as if she were burying her nose in his tunic. And she could feel his breath scarcely caressing her top lip as he lingered. Her eyelids automatically closed with anticipation, but his voice stopped her.
“Open your eyes, Mara,” he said in a gentle, heated whisper. “Open them and know ‘tis I who is kissing you.”
She dragged them open, his voice like a subtle touch, soothing and erotic. His aqua eyes were mesmerizing as they held hers all the way to the moment their lips finally met. Fire burned through her as the heat of his soft lips branded her own. All she could see and feel was him. All she could think about was how wonderful his mouth felt on hers, how sensuous his kiss was.
“Breathe, a thaisce.”
Until he spoke, she hadn’t realized she was holding her breath and was doubly amazed that he was perceptive enough to notice.
He slowly released her face. “Tell me,” he whispered, his eyes sultry and beguiling. “Who did you see when I kissed you?”
A smile graced her lips. “Only you.”
He smiled with her and returned his grasp upon her hand clutching the blood-stained linen at his brow. “I know you love Dægan. And I know he still occupies a significant place in your heart. But I am not here to replace him. Nor will I ever try. I only wish to fill what is left of your heart, if you will let me.”
His heartfelt touch soothed her, his kind words flowed like a cool river through her heated soul. But she was still unconvinced she needed this. Needed him.
Oh, she wanted him. Her body was telling her that. But needing him was quite a different matter. She was a mother now whose main concern was her son, Lochlann. And what would he think of this? What would he think about Breandán being in her life?
The last thing she wanted was to make Lochlann feel second best, or make him think she didn’t love his own father anymore. Lochlann only had the mind of a six-year-old and those thoughts would no doubt run through his brain. And having been without a father for so long, he may not take well to someone else in his life.
But then her thoughts ran toward this morning, when Breandán was carrying her son on his shoulders and the sound of his laughter filling her ears. Lochlann had warmed up to Breandán and he seemed very happy with his companionship. So much so that she began to think he’d might be fond of having Breandán as a father.
So? What do you think? I'd love to hear your thoughts...
And don't forget, next week I will be having a huge blog tour with interviews, guest character appearances, and lots of giveaways for the promotion of Mac Liam! Hope to see you there!
Renee Vincent's Website