Dahlia Donovan has a new MM urban fantasy romance book out: “Here Comes the Son.”
“And don’t eat my slice. Why are you so distracting?”
“Have you seen me?” Iggy licked the chocolate spread from his fingers, sighing when the move was completely wasted on Lalo, who hadn’t bothered to turn around. “You’re hard on my ego.”
“Good.” Lalo finally glanced over his shoulder with a grin. “Yours has needed deflating since high school. You’ve got Nutella on your cheek.”
“Want to lick it off?” Iggy infused the question with all his charm.
“Are you this unsanitary on all your dates?” Lalo wrinkled his nose and turned back to his camera. “They put napkins in with the pizza.”
Iggy fell backwards with an aggrieved sigh, staring up at the stars in the night sky. “Why do I bother?”
“No idea,” Lalo muttered. “Don’t know why you bother either. You’re less obnoxious when you aren’t using your chili senses to spice up your life.”
They snickered together.
The slightly defensive tone in his voice caught Iggy’s attention. He sometimes forgot Lalo misread teasing for seriousness. Silently kicking himself for not being more careful, Iggy got to his feet and walked toward him as their laughter faded away.
Great job, Iggy; put your foot in it on the first date. You’ve only known Lal for years.
Iggy brought his hands up, giving Lalo plenty of time to retreat, and gripped him by the shoulders. “I bother because you’ve had my attention since high school. Not that you noticed or cared.”
“You were joking.”
Oh, right, the misunderstanding a minute ago.
“I was.” Iggy tilted his head to put their lips closer, bending a little to close the two-inch height difference. “I’m not joking about wanting to kiss you.”
“Your face is still sticky.” Lalo’s green eyes glinted with mischief in the glow of the moon and stars overhead. He reached up to grip Iggy by his hair and tugged him into a kiss. “Mouth tastes of Nutella as well.”
Iggy smirked hungrily and sought Lalo’s lips again. He only pulled back when oxygen became an issue; they stared breathlessly at one another. “Ever had sex under the stars?”
“Damn it.” Iggy cut Lalo off when the telltale sensation of a demon on the prowl hit him, the strange, otherworldly rush of energy up his spine causing his hair to stand on end. “Fuck.”
“Chili on the loose?”
“Chili on the loose.” Iggy gave him a crooked grin. “Rain check on the date?”
“Rain check?” Lalo scoffed, stepping away to begin packing up his camera. “I’m coming with you.”
When evil stirs in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains, heroes come in both ordinary and extraordinary packages.
Ignatius Faber knows a few things for absolute certain. He’s half-demon, his father is the unequivocal prince of darkness, and demons want to destroy his city. And if he doesn’t make the first move on his crush, they’re never going to be anything more than a teenage fantasy that’s lasted into his thirties.
Lalo Pavia grew up hard and fast, orphaned at a young age. As an autistic, he’s learned to approach life cautiously. He throws his energy into gardening and photography—allowing both to provide a buffer between himself and the rest of the world.
Except for Iggy.
Can they find triumph, life, and even love in the middle of a city in flames?
Their fight for the mile high city has just begun.
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*contains explicit language*
Stowing both the journal and pen into his backpack, Iggy focused on the YouTube video playing on the library computer. The Siren. She was a beautiful, sultry vlogger who’d rapidly gained a cult-like following on her channel. No name, no history, no previous website. She’d sprung up from nowhere and catapulted to viral infamy.
Iggy hadn’t needed a cryptic dream warning him of another demonic invasion in his beloved city or the strange shiver up his spine to immediately put her onto his list.
The whir of the printer behind him drew Iggy away from the video as the hairs on the back of his neck stood up. His dark-brown eyes scanned the library slowly. He’d apparentlyrun out of time for research; somewhere in the city,a demon had come out to play.
Time to hunt.
Strapping on his bag, Iggy dragged a hand roughly through his short black hair. He winked at the librarian who grumbled at him when he leaped over a book cart in his path on the way toward the front entrance. She blushed, a response he was used to with his inherited looks and charm.
As one of his best friends from high school used to say, he had wickedly devilish good looks. He told her to stop reading Regencyromances. From his jet-black hair to his deep-brown eyes, he knew his face balanced the angelic with the roguish.
I’d do me.
Blinded by the bright sunshine, Iggy took a moment to adjust after stepping outside. Denver’s Central Library had always been a favoriteof his for research, with its massive collection. Plus, he always thought the building seemed almost like a grouping of castle turrets.
He paused on the corner of Broadway and Thirteenth Avenue. Spring was supposed to have sprung in the Mile High City. Not that the weather had noticed; they’d only just thawed out from winter.
And judging by the crisp air and gathering clouds on the mountains, they’d be inundated with another blizzard before the end of the day.
Jogging down Thirteenth, Iggy skidded to a halt on Lincoln. He tilted his head, trusting his finely honed instincts. Half a block down, he spotted an alley between a parking lot and the Art Institute that was shadowed more than it should’ve been in the bright early afternoon sun.
One step into the gap between the buildings, and he’d plunged into nighttime. The smell of sulfur swirled around him. He slipped his bag around his body, reaching inside for a spray can.
“Ah, Son of the Morning Star. Half-breed. I hoped you’d sense my presence.” Rastran stood at the end of the unnaturally dark alley. He leaned casually against the industrial air conditioner with one foot resting on a body, completely disregarding the dirt now staining his designer suit. Demons always enjoyed life’s luxuries. “Ignatius Faber, we’ve saved you for last. Your father’s brightest light. A beautiful irony. All of his hopes pinned on the one offspring who matched him most in appearance and strength. Pity he can’t see the monster he created.”
With a hardkick, Rastran sent the body rolling along the filthy ground to land barely a foot away from Iggy. Titus.One of his many half-siblings. Iggy hadn’t seen his brother in weeks. They’d all assumed Titus was on a hunt.
They generally kept in close contact, particularly since hundreds of other half-siblings had been culled over the past eight years. Titus and Iggy were the only ones left. Rage erupted deep inside him.
“I’m the monster?” Iggy calmly stepped over Titus, shoving grief and anger viciously down to remain focused. He had a demon to deal with. His fingers wrapped tightly around the canister of compressed holy water in his pocket. It resembled pepper spraybut worked to stun creatures of Hell long enough for him to send them home. “You should’ve stayed away from my city.”
Kicking a piece of brick at the demon, Iggy charged toward him, leaping over a dumpster. He caught Rastran in the chest with a kick, then doused him with the holy water. With the demon stunned, he swiftly dug the lighter from his bag and set fire to the expensive suit.
“Fuck off back to Hell.” Iggy stared intently at the brilliantly red flames rapidly burning the demon into nothing.
Flashy, fiery piece of shit.
Demons, as a species, seemed drawn to anything expensive or shiny. Titus had joked about their being the Kardashian brand of hellspawn. Iggy swallowed down his desire to both laugh and sob uncontrollably.
When the last bits of ash disappeared on a sudden brisk breeze, Iggy twisted toward Titus. With Rastran banished, lighthad returned to the alley. He didn’t have time to process his brother’s death.
His shoulders dropped with the weight of sorrow. A dead man in the middle of the city would draw attention Iggy didn’t need. He had no real explanation for how Titus had died.
Demons tended to kill without leaving a trace of evidence of their presence or method. Of their army of siblings, Titus had been the most dedicated to demon hunting. More than Iggy. Ironic, given fighting came a little too easily to Iggy.
With no way to transport Titus, Iggy gently removed the rosary from his brother’s neck and fled the alley.He left no clues to his presence, making sure to avoid any cameras in the area. Catching a bus on Lincoln allowed him to quickly return to where he’d parked his vehicle earlier.
Dahlia Donovan wrote her first romance series after a crazy dream about shifters and damsels in distress. She prefers irreverent humour and unconventional characters. An autistic and occasional hermit, her life wouldn’t be complete without her husband and her massive collection of books and video games.
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