Things could be worse…right?
Nine months ago, Annie Humphries had her life under control. Though she was still a very green private investigator, she’d begun to make a name for herself around Richmond as she tracked down missing teenagers and cheating spouses.
That was before Maya’s Halloween party. Unwittingly exposed to a potion along with the rest of the guests, Annie woke up with a rack of antlers growing from her head. Now she’s stuck in a magical pocket world, making lattes with Maya and hoping that the team of sorcerers and elves studying the novel potion can develop an antidote. Sure, things could be worse—some of the other partygoers died—but Annie desperately wants a ticket back to reality.
Then Wylan walks in.
Annie doesn’t know what to make of the new guy in town, a slightly clueless stranger who dresses like he just came from a Renaissance faire and sports antlers of his own, but what she learns about his family goes a long way toward explaining why people cross the street when they see her coming. Wylan belongs to the Wild Hunt, a group little understood but feared by the peoples of the Pactlands.
Now, an elven aristocrat has vanished shortly before her grand society wedding. Her parents publicly downplay their daughter’s disappearance in case she’s eloped with a paramour, but they accept Annie’s offer of help. Abandoning her espresso machine, Annie puts her skills to the test to figure out who might have wanted to harm or hide the bride, with Wylan riding along as her willing backup.
But the truth may be more than either of them bargained for, and if they can’t find her soon, Annie’s investigation could turn into a murder case.
When danger follows you home, where can you be safe?
Annie Humphries thought she’d saved the day when she sneaked Fellora ti’Mal away from the Wild Hunt before they could chase her down as prey. Not bad for a young PI without a drop of magical ability, right?
But that was before she found Wylan’s apartment tossed and bloodied. Annie knows where he’s been taken, but unless she can find a Huntsman willing to bring her to the Hunter’s hidden lair, she has no way of reaching him. Worse, since Wylan’s brothers appear to be following his scent trails across the city in search of his accomplices, Annie has no choice but to flee.
Diriem ti’Dana, a gifted farseer, offers Annie and her friends a place to hide while the Hunt is on the prowl. While he sees glimpses of the future, Diriem can’t tell Annie how to rescue Wylan, or even whether it’s possible for her to save his life. But he can offer her hints, and he introduces her to a troll with an old secret who may just be the key to Wylan’s salvation—if Annie is strong enough.
To find Wylan, Annie will need to push herself to her limits and face his father. But beneath her antlers, she’s just an ordinary human. How can she hope to defeat the ancient, virtually unkillable Hunter?
Gone without a trace…
Annie Humphries didn’t have “trainee agent” on her ten-year plan, but after six months with the Division of Plants and Potions, she’s finding her stride. Sure, she’s young and woefully human, but Annie is making a name for herself in Interdiction—as is Wylan, her fellow trainee, roommate, and semi-secret boyfriend.
Those few who know about their relationship don’t seem scandalized, though there’s that pesky problem of it being illegal…not to mention the issue of what would happen if the research team were successful in their quest for an antidote to Roulette. For Annie, freedom from the Pactlands would come with a mandatory mind wipe and a permanent separation from the man she loves.
When ten officers from the Division of Laws disappear during a training exercise, Wylan and Annie are asked to assist. All signs point to the Wild Hunt’s involvement, but why? And if the Hunt is responsible, then Fellora ti’Mal wants in. A trainee in her own right, Fell has scores to settle with the Hunter—if, that is, she can get her domineering mother off her back.
Against all odds, Annie has survived two encounters with the Hunt. But this time, with so many lives in the balance, her luck may have finally run out…
Copyright © 2023 Ash Fitzsimmons - All Rights Reserved.