by Stephanie Burkhart
Genre: Paranormal Romance
It’s 1927 and Lord Zoltan Kristos, Hungary’s Minister of the Interior, takes great pains to hide the fact he’s a werewolf from the world. Despite his efforts, he’s recognized when he goes to the Austrian-Hungarian border to inspect the area for damage from a recent rare earthquake.
Zoltan is accused of stealing Kurt Meklau’s witch, Inna, and is recklessly followed to Volturn Manor, a residence belonging to another werewolf family, the Vargas. After a fight with Meklau, Zoltan barely escapes and his adversary is found dead.
Sophia Varga and Tomas Martin find Zoltan. Sophia is determine to attend to Zoltan’s injuries and protect her home, but when Kurt’s father, Marcus, comes seeking revenge, Sophia is tested like never before. As Zoltan and Sophia work together, attraction and desire flame between them.
Will the secrets Volturn Manor harbors offer Zoltan and Sophia the clues they need to defeat Marcus and give them the opportunity to explore their feelings for one another?
Zoltan stepped into the middle of the area, surveying his surroundings. Sophia placed her candle next to the one on the table.
“Eat, Lord Kristos, the sunset is approaching,” said Rita.
Zoltan glanced at Sophia, then Rita, accepting the inevitable, and sat at the table.
“We’ve got blankets, extra candles, tea, and some food. Rita will help me tonight.”
Sophia sat on the cot next to the glass door.
Zoltan shoveled the meal into his mouth. “The room is small.”
“It’s also safe. Your arm isn’t completely healed, and you won’t be able to put much weight on it as a wolf.”
For a moment he stared at Sophia intently. “I suppose I’ll suffer some discomfort tonight.”
“Some — I don’t doubt you’ll be restless, but trust us. I’ve got some ointment to help.”
Zoltan pushed the empty plate away. “I’m not used to being with humans as a wolf — only Inna.”
Sophia left the cot and approached him. Stopping before Zoltan, she held out her hand.
“I’ll keep you warm and safe.”
He clasped her fingers tightly, looking up into her eyes. “Let me smell you.”
She nodded. He sniffed her shoulder, then her wrist. Sophia found the gesture very animalistic, yet pleasurable despite herself. Satisfied, he turned to Rita. “The wolf is instinctual. It is hard to focus on human thoughts. I must smell your scent as a human to know you mean no harm to me as a wolf.”
Rita stepped forward, and despite the apprehension on her face, she held out her wrist. Zoltan drew in her scent, then released her hand. He walked over to the glass and placed his hands on the frame, staring out onto the growing shadows.
“What’s wrong?” asked Sophia.
“The transformation is close. I feel the blood rushing through my veins.”
Sophia steeled her resolve. He stepped away from her and pressed his back against the wall. The candlelight fell across his face, creating stark shadows over his high cheekbones. He looked like the devil come to life. Sweat trickled over his brow.
“I’m sorry,” he whispered.
Stephanie Burkhart is a 911 dispatcher for LAPD. She was born and raised in Manchester, New Hampshire. She served 11 years in the US Army and currently calls Castaic, California her home. Stephanie was married in Denmark in 1991 and has two young sons. She adores chocolate and is addicted to coffee. She writes paranormal, contemporary, and steampunk romance and has two children’s books published with 4RV Publishing.