Thursday, October 22, 2015

Excerpt: Portia by Christina Bauer with Giveaway

Angelbound Offspring Series, Book 2
by Christina Bauer
Ink Monster, LLC
YA Fantasy
133 pages

Unlike her famous older brother Maxon, Princess Portia isn’t known for killing demons or attracting admirers. The reason why is simple: a spell was cast on Portia, and the magic has marked her to one day transform into a dreaded Void demon. To fight this horrible fate, Portia’s spent her life hiding in libraries and learning magic. But when the Void demons threaten to destroy all the after-realms—and the handsome dragon Emperor Tempest offers his help—then Portia suspects that her future holds more than just a demonic metamorphosis. Fate is calling the bookworm princess onto the battlefield, and it’s a fight against both deadly enemies and her heart’s desires.
May be read as a stand-alone.


Without thinking, I gesture to the man who’s standing right next to the boy, his arm held high in the air.
“How about your question, Sir?”
The guy rises. “Roy Cotter, Purgatory Enquirer.”
At these words, my heart sinks to my toes. This creep is one of those reporter-stalkers who follow me around looking for tabloid headlines. They always print the same stuff—how any second now, I’ll turn demonic, sprout six arms, and kill everyone in sight. How could I have missed him? He’s tall and bony and has a scorpion’s tail. Not easy to forget.
Roy pulls a small white notebook from his pocket. “What demon will you turn into, Princess?”
Gram leans into the microphone. “The Princess won’t be answering that question.”
Roy’s greasy face stretches into a grin. “Hiding something?”
Suddenly, I’m sick to death of concealing everything that I am. The guy wants an answer? He’ll get one.
I set my hand on Gram’s shoulder, guiding her away from the mic. “No, I’ve got it.” I scan the audience carefully before I answer. You could cut the air with a knife, the anticipation in here is so heavy.
“What demon will I turn into?” I ask. “The answer is, none. I’ve been studying magic so that never happens.” I gesture to my eye. “This is a spell. Spells can be broken.”
Roy rocks on his heels in delight. He’s got me on the defensive and he loves it. “Let me ask it another way, Princess. Most times, those marks are on your face signify a certain type of demon. You know, marking what you’ll turn into one day. Might be something harmless. Might not. None of us can read those marks on your face. Surely, with all your research, you’ve run across the answer to this question. Maybe you won’t turn into a demon, fine. But what are you Marked for?”
What a total set-up. If I tell the truth, I’ll be the laughingstock of the after-realms. If I lie, I look like an expert who doesn’t really know anything. No way am I answering.
“Come on,” says Roy. “What will you ‘not’ turn into one day?” He makes little quotation marks with his fingers when he says the word ‘not.’ A few muffled laughs sound from the crowd.
My torso tightens with frustration. I can’t believe this. I spend sleepless nights wondering how long I have left before I turn into a demon. I’ve worked all my life to break the spell that’s cursed me. I’m always the quiet one, the patient one, and the calm one. I never get angry. But my tragedy is somehow funny to my own so-called people? A new sensation boils through my bloodstream.
Rage. Suddenly, there’s only one thing I can do here.
Let loose on Roy.
“I’m Marked for the Void.”
All the oxygen seems to get sucked out of the room. Shocked faces stare at me from every direction.

And here she is. . .

Christina graduated from Syracuse University's Newhouse School with BA's in English as well as Television, Radio, and Film Production. Her day job is in marketing for companies like Microsoft, Cisco, and Brainshark. Back in the go-go 90′s, she founded her own software start-up, Mindful Technologies. Christina believes that, upon close examination of Tolkien's text, it's entirely possible that the Balrog was wearing fuzzy bunny slippers.

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