Shift of Destiny Excerpt #2
Shift of Destiny is the second book in my new Ice Age Shifters paranormal romance series. As you might have guessed from the title, it's all about shifters, but it also has magic, elves, fairies, and ogres. Below is a short Shift of Destiny excerpt. (See another one here.)
Moira Graham is tired of running from the crazy, magic-on-the-brain billionaire who wants to possess her for her supposed gifts. She's stayed off the grid and hoping to find a place to settle down, but the fates have one more curve to throw at her.
In the backyard, Moira stopped to admire Del’s lovingly tended garden. It reminded her of her foster mother’s garden, which had been filled with practical vegetables, but still had room for a few flowers. She missed her foster parents a great deal, but couldn’t risk dragging them into the mess that was her life. All she could do was send occasional postcards and breezily tell them she was still enjoying her road trip of three years and counting. Maybe in another year, if things stayed quiet, she could finally go home again for a while.
Moira straightened her slumped shoulders, then turned and opened the screen door to the converted outbuilding.
The pink petunia petal she’d carefully placed between the door and the frame when she’d left at dawn was lying in the dirt. She picked it up and gently brushed the dust off with her thumb. The petal felt like someone had stomped on it, and incongruously smelled a bit like wet dog.
She tried the door’s handle, and was relieved to find it locked as she’d left it. She let herself in with the key and pulled the door closed behind her. Sunlight streamed in from high west windows as she took in the room.
The chair at the square, battered pub table was perfectly centered under it, and the table was perfectly aligned with the strip of a kitchen. The microwave and toaster oven on the counter both squared up perfectly with the edge. The rectangular, mosaic-mirrored vase was perfectly aligned with the edge of the low bookshelf. She’d bet her sandwich that the contents of her medicine cabinet would be too neat and that the few things hanging in the repurposed school locker that served as her wardrobe were now evenly spaced.
Lawrence Witzer had not only found her, he’d been in her house and pawed through her things.
Moira allowed herself three swear words that wouldn’t count toward her swear fund.
Hell. That was her life since meeting the man, turning him down, and evading him ever after. She was sorry she had ever taken that summer job three years ago as a costumed fortune teller for a Renaissance fair in southern Colorado, doing entertainment tarot readings for the visitors.
Wealthy but crazy Witzer had visited her tent once and become convinced she was a genuine psychic, not just someone with common sense and a vivid imagination that had gotten her into trouble since childhood. She’d spun him a vague but colorful tale of business setbacks, intrigue, and ultimate victory over an enemy, because richly dressed customers like him tipped better when they starred as the hero of the story. She’d had no idea who he was at the time, only that he had expensive taste in jewelry and a compulsive need for order. He’d come back several more times over the run of the fair for additional readings. Then on the last day, he’d astonishingly invited her to interview for a job as a business analyst for international financial deals. He was undeterred when she admitted she only had an associate’s degree in hospitality, and she’d only gotten that to please her family.
She’d been flattered by the attention and the breathtaking salary Witzer had offered, but his behavior during the meeting in Denver, in the hotel’s presidential suite, was deeply weird. He obsessively straightened everything, even her sweater on the back of her chair, without seeming to be aware he was doing it. He asked her nonsensical questions about her “magical gifts,” mumbled in a foreign language, and watched her like he expected her to sprout antennae or spontaneously combust. His expression made her imagine he’d soon ask to look at her ankles and teeth, like she was a prize thoroughbred he wanted to buy.
She’d told him she needed to think about it and escaped quickly, then sent him a polite email a week later declining his offer, after she’d lined up a tour guide job in Vermont because she wanted to see the fall foliage. Instead of dropping it, he’d seemed to take her refusal as a challenge, which he’d since carried to extremes. He’d overshot “eccentric” some time ago and was now well into obsessive-delusional.
Shit. She knew from experience that after Witzer, his goons with strong arms and black vans would soon be at her door. They’d come after dark this time, because they’d learned from their encounter last year that she could scream really loud, a skill she’d developed when she’d played a banshee in a haunted house. Something told her that if she didn’t leave in the next thirty minutes, she could kiss her freedom goodbye. She was certain that Witzer, based on his unflagging pursuit, had no intention of letting her get away again.
About Shift of Destiny
There's no such thing as magic, or sexy shifters… Or is there?
Moira Graham’s car breaks down in the tourist town of Kotoyeesinay, Wyoming. She’s on the run. Again. A crazy billionaire wants to possess her ability to predict the future, but it’s not a “gift.” It’s simple guesswork. Magic doesn’t exist. And this quirky town—which uses elves, fortune tellers, and fairy-tale gimmicks to draw tourists in—isn’t helping.
Roving carpenter Chance McKennie is a prehistoric shifter on the lookout for a mate. Unfortunately, people fear his lion, and don’t stick around long enough to get to know the man. He thought his luck would change in Kotoyeesinay, but his skills aren’t needed in this magical sanctuary town with creatures of myth and legend on every block.
When Moira bumps into him, she’s almost willing to believe in the magic of this place. But it’s going to take more than a red-hot handyman and some glowy lights to save her from ruthless hunters.
Chance is determined to protect his mate and help her find the magic in her blood. But even a top predator can’t guess the lengths to which a desperate billionaire will go to get what he wants.
Continue the magic and true mates in Shift of Destiny, the second book in USA TODAY bestselling author Carol Van Natta's fun, action-filled, steamy-hot Ice Age Shifters™ series.