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Aisling, Book Two: Dream [MultiFormat]
eBook by Carole Cummings

eBook Category: Young Adult/Fantasy
eBook Description: What begins as Constable Dallin Brayden escorting the prisoner Wilfred Calder back to Putnam quickly turns into a flight for both their lives. Political betrayal and malicious magic lurk behind every bush and boulder in their flight across the countryside, resulting in Dallin becoming more protector than gaoler, and fostering a growing connection between him and his charge. Haunted by dreams not his own and pursued by just about everyone, Dallin begins to understand that he's not just protecting Wil out of duty anymore. As the shadow of Wil's previous life as a captive and tool continues to loom, the shadow of the man who kept him prisoner looms larger. Forced into a terrifying battle of both will and magic for not only his life, but his soul, Wil discovers that the Aisling is sought by more powerful enemies than the Guild and the Brethren: ancient gods and soul-eating spirits seek what lives inside him as well. And it seems his only salvation may well be Dallin and his goddess, the Mother, against whom Wil has been warned all his life.

eBook Publisher: Torquere Press/Prizm Books, Published: www.prizmbooks.com, 2011
Fictionwise Release Date: July 2011

7 Reader Ratings:
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Chapter One

Hey. Hey, Wil, c'mon, wake up."

Wil groaned, swatted blindly, realizing too late in his sleep-stupor that he'd done it with his right hand. A low hiss skidded through his teeth, and he curled the now-throbbing hand--thank you, Brayden--into his chest, dragging open hazy eyes. He squinted.

"Are you all right?" Urgent disquiet. When Wil only blinked in muzzy irritation, Brayden's face pinched up with worry, and he took Wil by the shoulders, roughly sat him up. "C'mon, now, say something, do one thing I ask, all right, I'm drowning here."

Annoyed, Wil shrugged out of the grip. "Get off, will you?"

And why was he annoyed and not afraid? He'd just let Brayden paw at him for who-knew-how-long, and would have been just as happy to have slept right through it. Where had his reflexes gone, damn it?

A balled-up something was coming at his nose--another handkerchief? what the hell?--pressing a little too roughly. Wil tried swatting that away, too, but Brayden shook his head, said, "Just calm down, you're bleeding."

And if that wasn't the dumbest contradiction Wil had ever heard.

"What...? Why am I--?"

"What were you dreaming?" Brayden was gently but intractably tipping Wil's head back, his fingers pressing at either side of the bridge of Wil's nose.

Wil fumbled at the handkerchief, blinking fuzzily at the ceiling. "Coffee," he said without thinking. He frowned. "I was dreaming about coffee, and... rain, I think, but I don't--" Suspicion crowded out the sleep-haze and murky confusion. "Why d'you care?" He pushed Brayden's hand away and snatched the handkerchief from his loose grip. Eyes narrowing, Wil started to back himself into the headboard, but there was no need--Brayden had frozen with the first sentence, and now he leapt back as though Wil had just spit hot coals at him. He just stood there, looking down at Wil with a mix of disbelief and too-cogent dismay, shaking his head slowly. Wil couldn't decide between bewilderment, apprehension or pique. "What?" he snapped.

Brayden didn't say anything, just stared, still shaking his head, like he was trying to deny Wil's very existence. Wordless, Brayden turned slowly, stunned gaze going inexorably to the little window above the cupboard. Staring, still, like the steady drops of rain had mesmerized--

The rain.

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