Title: BELOVED ENEMY (Book 3 of the Destiny Trilogy)
Author: Hywela Lyn
Genre: Science Fiction Romance
Cat Kincaid is obsessed with killing the man she believes is responsible for the torture and death of her sister, but when she eventually catches up with him, survival becomes a greater priority than revenge.
Kerry Marchant, haunted by memories, regret and self-blame, shields himself from the pain of the past by committing himself totally to the starship, Destiny, of which he is part owner. However, the beautiful, red haired woman who reminds him of his lost love, and who he suspects is working for a corrupt regime, represents a possible threat not only to the ship, but to his heart.
Marooned on an inhospitable planet, they need to work together to stay alive, fighting not only unknown assailants, but their growing attraction. But how can they learn to trust each other when he has vowed never to get close to a woman again, and she made a solemn pledge to destroy him?
“Wha-at?” Cat flung herself sideways. Her feet slid from under her as something long and black wrapped itself round her leg, writhing and tightening its coils. She hit the ground hard, rolling over onto her shoulder, almost deafened by the sound of Kerry’s blaster. The water sprayed up from the river and her throat burned with the acrid smell of blaster emissions and burning flesh. Gravel and pebbles dug into her skin through the fabric of her clothing, as something dragged her toward the edge of the bank. She bit back a cry of horror as she glanced over her shoulder at the thing twining itself around her leg. An icy fear went through her. Snakes—the only creatures she really feared. She aimed her pistol and then realized it was not a serpent that dragged her toward the river, but a long, rubbery tentacle fastened around the tough material of her leggings and boot.
Before she could activate the weapon, Kerry let off another barrage of plasma bolts into the river. He leapt toward her and ripped the severed tentacle from her leg. It flapped around on the wet grass. She scrambled to her knees, still slightly winded and fired at the hideous thing. The foliage around it flared for a moment with an eerie green flame and the tentacle shrivelled into a slimy black mass, emitting a pungent odour and causing her to gag for a moment.
“It seems I was mistaken about the creature being dead.” Kerry prodded the smouldering mass with his boot and looked across over the water. “It is now.” He leaned down and grasped her wrist to haul her to her feet. “Are you hurt?”
“No, I don’t think so.” Her shoulder was sore and probably bruised but she’d live. She tried to control her shivering. The incident affected her more than she wanted to admit. Kerry’s proximity, naked to the waist, his lithe body shining from the water droplets that still clung to his skin, his legs swathed in tight black leather, did nothing to help.
The last thing she wanted was for him to realize how scared she’d been when she thought a snake attacked her. “Thanks. That was close. It would have been a bit ironic if I’d been killed by the same creature I saved you from.”
She realized he still grasped her wrist. She tried to move away, but he pulled her back, obliging her to turn to him.
“No,” he said. “You’re not.” He pulled her closer and his eyes softened, his gaze holding her mesmerized. She opened her mouth to try to speak, but in the same instant he put his hand under her chin and his lips closed over hers. For a brief moment, she tried to resist but found herself drawn into his kiss as he deepened it, his hand brushing lightly through her hair. For a long moment, time seemed to stand still, and nothing mattered except his lips burning on hers. His tongue teased her own, demanding and insistent, his lips incredibly sensuous, firm, caressing. Through the thin material of her shirt, Cat felt the warmth of his bare chest pressed hard against her breasts. The cold metal of the capsule he obviously did not take off, even to bathe, dug into her skin, but the slight discomfort was nothing compared to the turmoil in her mind.
Without any conscious action on her part, her arms slipped around his neck. She traced the damp skin of his shoulders with her fingers and felt the ridges of old scars on his back. Her heart pounded uncomfortably in her chest, and her blood coursed like liquid fire through her veins.
She couldn’t remember ever having been kissed that way, or wanting to kiss someone back so desperately, not even Dorian.
Dorian. The very thought of him quenched the fire in her blood, turning it to ice and driving away the heat of desire, to bring her back to her senses. With that recollection came other memories of the past. Memories of her sister, the reason she’d sworn to kill this man.
Abruptly she broke away. “No, this is crazy.”
“Yes,” he agreed, his face once more cold and dispassionate. “It is—indubitably.”
Her senses tormented her with a sudden sense of loss, and for a moment she wanted to just turn and walk away—confine him to the realms of what might have been. Perhaps he’d thought kissing her would calm her, stop her shaking. If so he was mistaken—it elicited quite the opposite effect. She dared to look at him again, at his eyes, once more cool and expressionless.
“A momentary lapse of judgement,” he went on. “Any attraction between us is clearly purely physical. Even if things were different, we would probably kill each other in less than a week.”
“If we managed to hold out that long,” she muttered.
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All three books will be on sale for 99 cents from Aug 20th-Sept 3rd
What makes your featured book a must-read?
This is the third book of the Destiny Trilogy but is a complete story in itself. It is not necessary to read the other two in the series but of course I would love it if you did – it’s probably best to read them in order, in that case though – and you will meet some familiar characters as well as some new ones. If you enjoy “space opera”, series like Star Trek, and independent “kick-ass” heroines who hide the fact they have a heart, together with heroes who are strong, gritty and also used to hiding their feelings, stories with plenty of action , a hint of mystery, and a romance that grows with the story, I think you will enjoy Beloved Enemy.
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Runs August 24 – September 2, 2021.
Winner will be drawn on September 3, 2021.
Award winning author, Hywela Lyn spent most of her life in Wales, whose beautiful landscapes and wealth of myths and legends inspired her to write, although she currently lives in a small village in England. She weaves romantic Fantasy and Science Fiction adventures set in the future, on distant, mysterious worlds, as well as fantasies set in her beloved Wales.
She writes stories about strong characters have to overcome great odds to find deep and enduring love: Stories she hopes will truly take you out of this world and beyond.
All three award winning books in the Destiny Trilogy can be read as “stand-alone” novels and are available in eBook and audio format as well as paperback.
She loves horses, dogs and the outdoors – and reading a good book while eating chocolate!
You can write to her at Hywelalyn@hywelalyn.co.uk and she will always reply if you leave contact details. To know a reader enjoyed her books and was able to escape for a little while to her imaginary worlds makes her happier than words can express.
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