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About the author:
Christine Leo was born and raised in Southern California where she currently resides with her tech-savvy husband. When she’s not eating fast food or stuck in traffic, you’ll find her completely engrossed in a romance novel or writing one. Christine holds a BA in Communications, which would have been Creative Writing had the universe simply dropped a novel on her head a little sooner. A heavy one. At least 600 pages. Hard cover.
What inspired you to write your book?
The inspiration for this particular story came about in 2010 following a major natural disaster. Millions were injured, homeless and suffering beyond comprehension and those were just the people that survived. I remember wishing there was something else we could blame outside of Mother Nature, and that’s when I got the idea for my villain in this book.
Here is a short sample from the book:
“There is no need to be afraid,” he repeated as he held the blanket open for me while standing on my grandmother’s deck. He had insisted we make our way over to where it was warmer.
How could I explain to him that I didn’t hesitate out of fear? I hesitated because I knew once I stepped into the circle of his body, once those strong arms wrapped around me, there would be no turning back.
His eyes pierced me with their blue intensity and goose bumps ran the length of my body. Every molecule I possessed boiled with anticipation and told me to go to him. Even the wind seemed to be pushing at my back, urging me forward, as if there were other forces at work here.
“Do you feel that?”
“Yes,” he said, stepping behind me to wrap the blanket around my shoulders, no longer waiting for me to make a choice.
I gasped as the weight of both the blanket and his solid arms enveloped me. I could feel the hard press of his chest against my back and the warmth of his breath upon my neck.
“What is it?” I asked, barely managing to get the words out.
“Our bodies…” he whispered, as he ran his hands up and down my arms, warming me. “They call to each other.”
“Call to each other,” I repeated, feeling lightheaded, finding it hard to breathe.
“We are Linked, Nyssa.” He moved my hair away from my neck and softly nuzzled the skin under my earlobe.
I barely stopped a moan from escaping. “By what?”
“The Universe,” he answered, then pressed his lips tenderly to my sensitive skin.
I flinched as I saw a flash of blue light and pulled myself from his embrace.
“Why does that keep happening?”
“This, you mean?” He reached up to cup my cheek and blue light sizzled once more.
I inhaled sharply and stepped back. “Yes.”
“As I said, it’s because we are Linked. Unlike most exchanges performed by members of the Sync, which are intentional, the exchange brought forth by our intended mate is involuntary. You call forth my powers, Nyssa.”
He tried to reach for my hand.
I pulled away. “I’m sorry. I can’t. I have to understand first. You keep mentioning the universe, like you’re talking about fate or something. What does the universe have to do with anything?”
Teru expelled a deep breath and sat down on one of the deck’s lounge chairs. “The Sync believe that the Universe has an intended mate for everyone. It is a rare gift to find your own. There is nothing, short of sickness, imprisonment or death that will keep us from seeking our other half.”
“And you think that person is me?”
He held my gaze without blinking. “I know that person is you.”
I tried to let what Teru was saying sink in, but even with all the fantastical things that had transpired before today, this moment was too personal. Too permanent.
Obviously, Teru had grown up surrounded by some type of mythical lore and fully believed what he was telling me to be true–and though I felt an undeniable urge to explore my attraction to him–I simply had no plans to be in a committed relationship again anytime soon. Been there, done that. Had the singe marks to prove it went down in glorious flames.
“You do not believe me?” Teru asked, breaking my train of thought.
“I’m sorry, it’s just, all of this…” I gestured around. “Is new to you. Heck, you weren’t even speaking English until an hour ago. There’s a whole world of women on this planet that you can’t even begin to conceive of, literally billions, and you think I’m your one and only?”
“Yes,” he said simply. “That is why we are connected. That is why we can interact with each other in dream-state.”
“But you’re Sync. For all I know, that’s par for the course.” And you do this with every woman you meet.
Teru’s brows furrowed. “Par for the course?”
“Sorry, it’s a human adage. Never mind. Anyway, weren’t you just telling me a few seconds ago that everything you thought was once real was a lie? How do you know that this fated mate stuff is not a lie as well?”
Teru stood abruptly and before I knew what was happening, his six foot plus muscular frame was filling my view. “My beautiful Nyssa.” He reached down to cup my face with both of his hands, blue sparks flying around us like crazy. “Yes, most of what I was taught growing up was a lie and yes, we were kept ignorant through an isolated existence, but this…” He stroked the sides of my face softly with his thumbs. “This is not a lie. This I can feel.”
“What do you feel?” I asked quietly, once again, light-headed and breathless at just the impact of his nearness.
Teru slowly bowed his head and touched his lips softly to mine. He held them there for a few brief seconds, waiting for me to respond.
In that moment, I realized he was right. If life on other planets, supernatural powers, abnormally long life spans and crazy ass alien goddesses could exist, so could fated mates. The hearty dose of instant attraction pumping through my veins right about now was proof enough. I felt like I was on a runaway big rig about to go over the side of an icy mountain highway.