Secrets and Souls
Prequel to The Soul Guide
by Kelly Stock
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Set forty years before The Soul Guide, this is a story of Bertram and Mellissa…
"You think I don't know that you’re keeping secrets from me? I am not the only liar here..."
The last thing Bertram expected after his grandfather’s death was to find himself the owner of Clayhill Manor, a decrepit mansion with little going for it other than musty rooms filled with moth-eaten furniture and mice. But at least he gets to maintain the solitary life he’s used to. That is, until red-headed beauty, Mellissa, walks into his home and changes his life forever.
With one touch of her hand, Bertram finds himself part of world he never knew existed. Where he is the Caretaker, and Mellissa the Soul Guide. Where doors appear out of nowhere and he’s the only one who can see them.
Together they must face a strange new world hidden just beneath the surface. A world which contains the pure of soul and malevolent creatures that lurk in the dark.
But Mellissa holds secrets within her, secrets that hurt her heart. With a past that she’s unwilling to share with a man who is falling in love with her, can they put their feelings aside and fulfil their roles or will her secrets tear them apart?
Apart they are weak, together they are stronger, and the Mephisto are always watching.
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“See that there,” she said pointing to the cluster of stars that looked like nothing more than a misty cloud to the uninformed. “That is Praesepe, the Beehive Cluster of stars. Some say it is the gateway where souls entered Earth from Heaven.”
“And is it?” Bertram asked, his breath warm on her neck. She hadn’t realised he had got so close. She shifted sideways, giving herself some space. She felt his disappointment before she saw it.
“Well, I guess that depends on what you believe. Is there a heaven? I’m not sure I know the answer to that, even now. What I do know is that there is more to this world than what I understood before. There is magic, and mystery, and there are souls. Souls that I am responsible for, Bertram. My duty is to take care of them now.” Mellissa felt her hands shake at the confession. Up until a few months ago, everything had been so diﬀerent. No matter how much it killed her to say it, her life had taken a path she couldn’t run away from, despite all that she’d left behind and how much her heart was breaking.
The Soul Guide
The Soul Guide Series Book 1
When university student Sybil is stung by a bee in the middle of a winter snowstorm, she finds herself chosen as the latest Soul Guide. With only a few days to reach the Veil; the place of souls, and complete the Passing Over ceremony, she begins to question everything she ever believed to be true. But dark forces will stop at nothing to prevent Sybil from fulfilling her destiny. Struggling with such a huge responsibility, and afraid for her life, Sybil has no choice but to put her trust in two complete strangers.
Meet Bertram, the Caretaker. Despite his anguish at losing the love of his life, he has a job to do. Sybil is his responsibility now. He must guide her to the Veil - no matter the cost.
Then there’s Alec, who’s drawn to Sybil the moment he lays eyes on her. Overcome by the sudden need to protect her, Alec will risk his life to ensure her safety. Or does he have darker designs...?
Can the reluctant Soul Guide, the grieving Caretaker, and the obsessive stranger work together? Only one thing is certain: the future of both Earth and the Veil hang in the balance, and the dark are rising.
“I've just finished the soul guide and I'm feeling very impatient for book 2! This is a great fantasy read, intriguing, with characters you really want to know more about! It's hard to believe this is the author’s first novel, there's so much detail and depth to the characters and story. Well worth a read.”
“Wow! I could not put this book down. The way Kelly writes encaptures you and takes you to another place. Her vivid imagination and the way she describes every detail enables you to picture in your mind being there with Sybil on this spiritual journey. It only took me two days to read and I can't wait for the next instalment to see what happens next.”
“This book, well written and with a great story line, had me hooked from the start and I can't wait for the next one in the series.”
“The Soul Guide is a unique, fast-paced, beautifully-written book. Immediately it sucked me in, and it was hard to put down. Kelly Stock has woven together a story with interesting characters and a truly imaginative plot. In a way, reading this felt like gazing upon beautiful artwork. Every chapter revealed a new layer of the story, intriguing me further and making me even more curious about what was to come. What a treat this book was to read!”
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“Are you alright?” Alec asked, concerned.
“I can’t breathe,” she choked out, grabbing Alec’s arms as her legs suddenly lost the ability to hold her upright. Alec caught her as her body began to shake uncontrollably.
“Christ, hold on,” he said and pulled out his mobile phone dialling for an ambulance, only to ﬁnd no signal. “This bloody weather,” Alec cursed, shoving his mobile phone back into his jacket pocket. “We need to get you to a hospital, Sybil. I think you’re allergic. I’m going to take you back to Carlo’s, ok? I’ll call for an ambulance there.”
Sybil could see that Alec was talking to her but she couldn’t respond. She was ﬁnding it diﬃcult to breathe and had started to draw in short, sucking, breaths. The surrounding snow blurred into a white mist as Alec’s face went in and out of focus. Sybil felt Alec lift her oﬀ her feet, the movement causing her head to jolt against his shoulder. The tightness in her chest felt like two, huge hands squeezing the life out of her. A light ﬁlm of sweat was covering her, but she was on ﬁre as if ﬂames were rippling over her skin. Even the falling snow did nothing to cool her. Within moments, she could hear raised voices, but the words were muﬄed and distant like they were talking in another room. Sybil tried to open her eyes but found that they were swollen shut. She felt herself being lowered down onto something soft.
Then darkness took over.
Back outside on the street her bag of books was rapidly being covered by the falling snow. Not far from where they lay a thin, dishevelled looking man, stepped out of the shadows sniﬃng at the air. He blinked twice and his eyes were replaced by black, hollow orbs devoid of any life.
The Soul Guide Series Book 2
Releases October 21st!
Still reeling from the secrets revealed within the Veil, Sybil finds herself getting more than she'd ever bargained for. Having to manage her new gifts is hard enough let alone having to cope with the barrage of memories that aren't even her own.
Could becoming the Soul Guide be the biggest mistake of Sybil's life or her bravest decision yet? She couldn't tell you, to busy dealing with the responsibility that her new role brings and avoiding the growing residents of Clayhill to find out.
And yet, hiding away isn't an option.
With the arrival of terrified young Estelle, Sybil is forced to face reality and become the warrior she was destined to be. There are far worst things happening beyond the safety of Clayhill and she doesn't have the option of turning a blind eye, especially when the 'worst things' involve her own beloved dad.
With Estelle's revelations, action must be taken. Can the unlikely group work together to save the children locked away in the depths of the Masters home or will the Mephisto succeed in tearing them apart? Read book two of The Soul Guide series to find out.
In Tortured Souls, alliances are made, friendships are forged, hearts are broken and the battle of light versus dark has truly begun.
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Estelle was clean, dry and dressed in a plain, ﬂoor-length gown. The room they stood in was richly decorated with twin chandeliers, a soft red carpet and dark red, velvet seats. Despite the warmth of the room, Estelle could still feel the ice-cold of the shower she and the others had had to endure. Every drop of water had been like a razor blade cutting into her skin. Yet, despite the pain, she would do anything to be back under the water once again. She wanted, no, needed, to blot out the images that were now making her scream endlessly inside her own head. No more, no more, no more. But, like a puppet, she was forced to watch them suﬀer, knowing she was going to be next. Tears slipped down her cheeks as the other boys and girls’ terriﬁed faces ﬂashed before her eyes. Most of them cried, some had pissed themselves and the acrid smell of their fear ﬁlled the room like a suﬀocating shroud. The rest held an emptiness in their eyes and she knew they had already given up, retreated within their minds to try to spare themselves from the horror of what was coming. But it mattered not, because one by one, death had come for them all.
Born and bred in London, UK, Kelly is a 38 year-old multitasking mum, wife, colleague, friend, daughter, sister and lastly, but by no means least, writer.
Her love of writing started when she began her Creative Writing degree at North London University in 1999. She hasn’t always wanted to be a writer, her first job of choice was a Vet, but that dream died when she realized she was allergic to most, small, furry animals. But, she has always loved to read, and that’s where her passion for writing began.
After finishing her degree in 2002, she didn’t put pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard, until thirteen years later. Life, in all its wonderful glory got in the way. Then when her youngest went to school full-time she had precious time on her hands. It was during this time that Bertram, Sybil, and Alec were conceived and her first novel, The Soul Guide was born.
In her spare time you can find Kelly, reading, bringing up her kids the best way she knows how, and trying desperately not to make a fool of herself on social media.
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