As bitter enemies scheme against each other with the fate of Tolar in the balance, Laura Howard, made a powerful empath by the Jorann’s gift, loses everything—again. Now she must recover and find her place, and herself, while fighting against the ghosts of her past and the expectations of everyone around her.
Loss after tragic loss shakes the Paran to his very soul. With his allies vying for control of the planet and his own province caught in the middle, he must risk his life as well as that of the woman he loves to take the one action he never thought he would: fight for leadership of the ruling caste.
Read An Excerpt:
From The Fall, by Christie Meierz
“What else did you see in Laryth?”
“My father’s ears. That little crease he has, here,” she placed a finger where it would be on her own ear, “is a family trait. But other than that, he resembles you.”
“You told me you wanted a son who resembled me.”
He leaned forward to rest his forearms on his knees. What smoldered in his dark eyes pulsed through him and into her. “You did.”
She looked at her hands, struggling to catch her breath. “I do not understand how I could be so wanton, so quickly. I was… I lost John, it was too soon.”
He moved from the chair to sit on the edge of the bed beside her. “You had lost everyone,” he said in a soft voice. “Marianne was your friend, and the Sural protected and sheltered you, but you had no one else when I met you. You were lonely.” He laid one hand along her face. “I knew very quickly I had met my heart’s match. It did not take you long to reach the same conclusion.”
“Love at first sight,” she whispered.
“When you remember more, and you are yourself again—”
Laura stopped breathing. “What?” She swatted his hand away from her face.
“Beloved?” He straightened, with brows furled.
She gasped a breath, and another, her stomach twisting as if she’d been punched. Her father’s voice echoed off the walls of his study. When the gene therapy starts to work. When you are smart. When you are a proper Johnson.
When you are yourself.
She fixed the Paran with a glare. “You do not want me.”
“You know I do. You are far too sensitive not to see it.”
“No, you want the Laura you once had. Not me, not as I am now. Is everyone else waiting for me to be myself again?”
“Are they? Who in this place cares about me?” She thumped her chest with one hand. “My family thinks I am dead. No one here wants me as I am. I have nothing. Nothing!” She rolled onto her side, her back to the Paran.
“My heart is yours,” he whispered. His fingers touched her arm. The confusion coursing through him magnified.
She shook him off. “Your heart belongs to a woman who looked like me, but she died. There is only me now, and you do not want me. Go. Get out.”
Award-winning writer Christie Meierz writes space opera and science fiction romance set in a civilization of empaths on the edge of a dystopic Earth empire. Her published works include her bestselling debut novel, The Marann, and its sequel, Daughters of Suralia, and two prequel short stories published in Into Tolari Space ~ The First Contact Stories.
Christie has spent a night and/or eaten a meal in all 50 U.S. states, plus Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Currently, she lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with her mathematician husband and an assortment of stuffies. When she’s not writing, she writes about writing on her blog, Meierz Musings (christiemeierz.blogspot.com), and Facebook (facebook/christie.meierz and facebook/tolarispace), where she welcomes comments and friend requests.