I’m ecstatic to announce the release of Scorned, the fourth book in the Demon Within series. Scorned is my favorite thus far because of the shift that takes place in Cami’s life and world. I loved exploring all her different relationships–both the good ones and bad ones–and how they affected her on different levels.
With every release, I usually share the prologue, but I’ve decided to share an excerpt from the first chapter instead. I’ve edited out most spoilers, but I have to warn you, if you haven’t read any of the other books, you may still stumble across some.
I hope you enjoy!
Fire glows in Malicevile’s eyes as he directs his anger at me. Raising his hands, he blasts me with a surge of white-hot energy. I don’t have time to react. His power knocks me back into the wall, sending sparks through my vision.
I grind my teeth while he shoots more power at me until I focus enough to absorb it. My hair rises around my face as static clings to me. My soul fills, expanding to the point that I’m pretty sure I’ll combust if he continues, but I won’t give him the satisfaction of asking for mercy.
Standing over me, he smiles. “Had enough?”
Kicking my leg out, I knock his feet out from under him, stopping him from blasting me with another wave of power. If he expects anything less of me, then he doesn’t know me as well as I thought he did.
I levitate from my spot on the floor and land just next to him. “Have you?”
He laughs as his eyes narrow. Without answering me, he handsprings to his feet and removes his suit jacket. It gives me the chance to ready myself for his next move. As he rolls up his sleeves, I shrug from my leather jacket and toss it to Evan.
I roll my shoulders, stepping backwards, not touching the floor as I levitate high enough to be at the same level as Malicevile. He cracks his knuckles like he can somehow intimidate me. It works a little.
Power ignites in his fingers, and it doesn’t take him long to thrust an energy orb at me. As I catch it, he charges forward, slamming his hands into my chest, pushing me back into the wall. His sharp nails dig into my collarbone, stabbing into my skin.
Jerking my leg up, I knee him in the stomach. He doesn’t back down though. He never does. I could fight him all I want, but he only reacts like I’m a pesky fly.
“You’re boring me, Camilla,” he says, sending another bout of energy into me.
I don’t respond. I can’t. His energy comes in faster and hotter than usual. It sinks deep into my soul, threatening to consume me. He’s testing me, making a point. Showing me that I’m nothing. It’ll take me years to ever measure up to him.
“Have you had enough?” he asks again, smiling at my obvious pain.
“No,” I manage to spit out.
“Good.” He drops his hands and steps back to give me a chance to try to best him again. “Now stop thinking and just react.”
Without waiting for him to strike first, I shoot a fireball from my hands instead of the energy he expects. The fire singes the fabric, smoldering his dress shirt. There’s no point in trying to use his power against him.
As he pats the burning fabric with his hand, I rush forward. Another fireball erupts in my fingers, and I chuck it at him again. He’s prepared this time though and drops to the ground before propelling from the floor to knock into me. His arms circle my waist, and he flips me up and over his shoulder. He spins me through the air and launches another bout of energy at me.
I can’t absorb the power and stop my fall at the same time, so when my back hits the hardwood floor of his office, air bursts from my lungs. I skid across the floor, hitting my back on the door. It shakes on its hinges from my force but doesn’t crack like the last time I egged my father on.
I shift, peering at Evan’s boots as he stands over me. Glancing up, I meet his serious eyes. His jaw tenses, and we watch each other for a split second. It’s long enough for Malicevile to shock me again.
I scream out in frustration and thrust my hands out, sending the power I’ve been saving for a special occasion. The lava bomb flies through the air and hits Malicevile in the stomach. Surprise crosses his face, and he rips his shirt off before the acid-like power melts into his skin. He wasn’t quick enough though. His abs glow bright pink.
“Get up, Cami,” Evan whispers.
Malicevile’s already crossing the room before I have a chance to get to my feet. Fire burns in his eyes as he closes the distance. Energy swirls in his hands, and he comes at me with furrowed brows, a look of revenge on his face.
I raise my hands. “I’ve had enough.”
He hovers over me. “I’ll tell you when you’ve had enough.” With those words, he sends a stream of electricity straight into my chest.
The edges of my vision darken as exhaustion consumes me. He hasn’t pushed me like this in weeks. I’m pretty sure I’m being punished.
An angry tear escapes my eye. “Stop!”
“Make me,” Malicevile says with a smile.
But I can’t. All I can do is succumb to the darkness that drags me away from the world.
You can pick up your copy of Scorned today from most online retailers.