Friday, March 9, 2012

Demon Soul by Christine Ashworth: Character Interview, Excerpt

Paranormal / Urban Fantasy

…to retrieve his soul, she’ll become fire… Gabriel Caine stands on the edge of the abyss. A vampire has stolen his soul and if he doesn’t get it back soon, his next step will be into hell.

Rose Walters has been sent back from the dead to complete one task – save Gabriel Caine. But this muscled guy in leather, black jeans and a dangerous aura didn’t look like he needed anyone’s help.

Rose has touched the whole of Gabriel, making him yearn for a love he believes he can never have. Her willingness to put her human life on the line for him forces him to bring all three parts of himself – demon, human and Fae bloodlines, and the traps and gifts of each – into harmony, and into the fight that will decide their fate.

Paperback   |    Kindle 

Additional Content Includes:
Character Interview
About the Author

Gabriel knew her frustration as he knew his own. His original plan dissolved as he vaulted up to catch himself on the railing of the balcony. Joy and need both pulsed through him as he caught her scent.

Rose gasped and whirled about, pressed her hands to her mouth. Finally registering Gabriel, she wrapped her arms around the robe she wore, her eyes flashing in the dim light.

"Took you long enough. I’m going crazy here. Aren’t you?”

"I stayed away longer than I’d meant." Gabriel grimaced as her shoulders tensed up. Sighing, he dropped from the railing to the balcony and held out a hand to her. "I’m not used to needing anyone. Not for years."

She twined her fingers with his. "I’m beginning to understand that." Her words were quiet in the pre-dawn. "You meant to push me away. But it doesn't matter." She turned her face up to his, her blue eyes like lasers, pinning him to the spot. "Apparently this need thing works both ways. Your soul has been aching for you. It’s kept me awake and edgy. I’ve needed you. I’ve been calling you for hours.”

“I’m here now.”

Rose moved toward him and put one small hand on his broad chest.

He felt that touch clear to his missing soul. Almost holding his breath, his gaze met hers. Flinched from what he saw in her eyes, even as it warmed him.

"Gabriel, I can't do anything else than protect you. I feel this is the reason I'm here, and everything that went before brought me to this place, this time. Everything else brought me to you. Whether or not we have a future together? I don’t know. But I don’t want to rule it out, either, just because you’re scared."

"I don't want this." He searched, but words were beyond him. A helpless little sound escaped from his lips. "Rose."

She smiled a little, her eyes finally warming. "It's okay. I'm scared, too. You do what you need to do. Whatever happens with Satine, I'll be here waiting for you. We’ll figure out what comes next together, okay?"

His arms came around her then, lifting her off her feet to bring their faces to the same level. Gabriel searched her eyes. They were clear, holding no secrets. Her heart shone freely, and it took his breath away.

She wrapped her legs around his waist, took his face into her hands as he adjusted his hold. "Kiss me," she whispered. "While we have this time together."

He obeyed. Her lips were like satin beneath his, warm and alive and opening to him. His senses spun and his grip on her tightened. His control wavered.

Gabriel broke their kiss and leaned his forehead against hers, taking a deep breath. Drawing in her scent, the delicious fragrance made him yearn. Every part of him grew hard as stone.

This sprite, with her flaming red hair and Soul Chalice abilities had captured his heart like no other. Enticed him like no other. Her hands urged him to take her mouth again, and he forgot the reasons to deny her.

Her body grew warm against him. Her scent rose up to wreathe his brain, turning his thoughts muddy. He needed.

Urgency thrummed through him. Gabriel turned, pressed her back against the wall and, as his mouth ravaged hers, slid his hand down the front of her robe. Her skin was heated silk against the roughness of his fingers, her body wonderfully responsive.

Rose's hands spread across his chest, those strong, capable hands hot against his cool skin, sparking fires of need wherever they landed. Gods.

"Rose?" The door beside them opened. "Oops. Sorry." It shut. Maggie went away.

Gabriel stilled, one of his hands curved on her bottom, the other on her breast, his mouth a whisper from hers. His eyes opened and he looked into the smiling blue eyes of the woman who had captured him.

"Now there's timing for you," she said, her voice husky with need and laughter.


Q: Well Gabriel. It's lovely to have you here. Wow. You're, um, tall. And gorgeous. *fans self* Ahem. So, tell us about your family. What was life like growing up in the Caine household?

A: Complicated. Mom died giving birth to me, so I've never gotten to meet her. Well, I did - but it's kind of weird and I don't talk about it. Dad held it together until we were all of legal age, then he hit the road and we haven't seen him since. My oldest brother Gregor is the Suit - he's the one running our investigative agency. Next comes Justin, who'd much rather be on a surfboard than in the office. Somehow he manages to do both. I'm their half-brother since I was the product of a rape. Then there's my cousin Kellan, who's - well, he's different, Kellan is. Comes from living in a trailer out in the desert. He likes to blow things up.

Oh, and we're of mixed blood. Demon, human and Fae blood runs through our veins. It's a trip and it's a pain in the ass, at the same time.

Q: Wow. Demon and Fae blood? High school must have been hell. How did you survive it?

A: Dad was pretty great, though Kellan helped me the most with understanding the changes I went through. It's a lot more than puberty, let me tell you. But then Kellan took off, and my life pretty much sucked after that. I ran away from home at 18. Which was stupid, since everything I needed ended up being here in Los Angeles. It only took me ten years to figure that out.

Q: What is your stance on relationships?

A: Are you asking me if I'm single? I'm not. I'm happily married to the most wonderful woman in the world - my Rose.

Q: So, you saved her life. True or false?

A: Rose isn't one to stand around and wait for someone to come along and help her. She saved her own life. And mine. I maybe helped a little bit, but without her? I'd be dead. Or a Shade.

Q: Is Rose a demon/human/Fae mix, too?

A: No. Rose is...well, she's something all together different. For a while she harbored a fire demon named Mephisto. She didn't do it knowingly, and she didn't realize that the fire demon was one of my worst enemies; but Mephisto helped her out, so, um, yeah. She gave him a part of his soul back, and we called everything even. So to speak. But if I ever caught him in a dark corner, I'd make sure he didn't come back out alive. I'm a lot stronger than I was at 18. *fingers the scar on his neck.*

Q: So I've been hearing rumors about a door to another dimension. Is this real? Sounds like an episode of Star Trek to me.

A: Oh, it's real all right. There are portals that can be opened between the Human Plane and the Chaos Plane, where the demons were banished. They want to take the Human Plane back. Luckily for humankind, they aren't very organized. But, every now and then they manage to find their way to the Human Plane. That's when my brothers and I step in. In fact, there was an invasion of them not long ago. Lots of people died. But we scoured the city and are as sure as we can be that we got them all.

Q: "Got them all." Does that mean you killed them?

A: Yes ma'am. Not that we like to think of it that way. We much prefer to think of it as protecting humankind.

Q: So is it easy to open these portals? Can anyone do it?

A: No, and no. I think it's safer if I leave it at that.

Q: What's next on your personal agenda?

A: I'm trying to get Kellan to move back to Los Angeles, to stay closer to the rest of the family. He's a wicked good fighter and a great guy to have at your back. When we're not working, Rose and I are rehabbing the family house. The property has been in the family for over a hundred years, and the house is almost that old. Plus, I'm keeping an eye out for Mephisto.

Q: You mentioned Christine working on your half brother Gregor's story. Can you share any of that without making her angry?

A: Sure. Serra is a full-blood Fae Warrior. Portals have been opening in her world, as well as on the Chaos Plane. They tracked the guy - a Death Mage named Kendall Sorbis - back to Los Angeles, and Serra and Gregor ended up working together to close the open portal here and track down the demons who had come through. They got him in the end, after a damned bloody battle. Rose and I missed that action. We were on a belated honeymoon of sorts up in Cambria.

Q: Wow, sounds fascinating. Does that book have a name?

A: Yeah, it's called DEMON HUNT, and Christine's currently working on edits. My book, the one with me and Rose in it, is out now and called DEMON SOUL.

Q: Okay, one last question. What advice do you have for anyone who wants to help you fight the demons?

A: Fire. If you can carry a flamethrower without looking conspicuous, that's a terrific weapon. But it's messy work. I highly advise leaving the fighting to the professionals.

Q: Thanks so much for being here today.

A: Thanks for having me, and for not freaking out. I really appreciate it.

I’m old enough to know better and young enough to enjoy breaking some rules. I love cats, demons, witches, vampires and some angels. And gardening. Oh, and cooking, and wine. And I totally adore teenagers.
For some reason, I’m constantly drawn into conversations that start with protecting ourselves from a zombie apocalypse, and spiral out from there. So you can see why I’m a writer.

Winner is Lauren Rura


Christine Ashworth said...

Laurie, thanks so much for having us! I'm sorry about Gabriel taking the interview - I didn't even know about it until he confessed, lol.

Laurie said...

Nah, honestly Christine....he was a perfect gentleman!! {wink}

Veronica Scott said...

The character definitely comes through in the interview! Fun to read, have to go add to my TBR list *right NOW*!

Charlene Sands said...

Christine - This is a wonderful book. Loved the excerpt and the interview with Gabriel!!

Robena Grant said...

Great interview, Christine. I enjoyed the book, and look forward to the next one.

Maggie Marr said...

Great interview Christine! Demon Soul is on my TBR pile and I am excited to get to it!

Robin Bielman said...

Loved this!! Gabriel should do more interviews. :D Demon Soul is on my Kindle and I'm looking forward to reading it!

Christine Ashworth said...

Veronica, thank you so much for adding me to your TBR pile!

Charlene and Roben, you gals are tops on my list. Thanks for reading and coming by!

Maggie and Robin - hugs ladies!

Lauren said...

Great character interview! This book sounds awesome :)

Christine Ashworth said...

Hey, thanks Lauren! And thanks for stopping by.

Lynne Marshall said...

Hey Christine - I've been away all day, or I would have commented sooner. It was great to be reunited with Gabriel and reminded all about his unique lineage and family life. I'm so glad Rose and Gabe found each other!

Next book should be just as great as the first, and I'm looking forward to it!

Christine Ashworth said...

Hugs, Lynne - hope you enjoyed today, it was a gorgeous one!

Teresa Noelle Roberts said...

Gabriel gives a great interview--can't wait for Demon Hunt.

Christine Ashworth said...

Teresa, you're a sweetie! Working on edits for HUNT right now - having a wonderful time!

Nata ArtistaDonna said...

love this book! can't wait to read it :)

SusanD1408 Crochet Addict said...

Thanks ever so much for the giveaway, would love to read it.