Drenched in darkness and surrounded by the echo of screams, Jinji waits deep in the dungeons of Rayfort, haunted by the memory of the knife stabbing Rhen, plagued by a foreign voice whispering through her mind. A few floors above, Rhen rests trapped in a coma, about to wake to a changed world—a world where his best friend is a woman, his nephew is the king, and an enemy army surrounds him on all sides.
But human wars are insignificant compared to the darkness gathering unseen. Memories of lives she never lived flash through Jinji’s thoughts, hinting at a past that cannot be repeated. A mysterious phantom visits Rhen, carrying cryptic messages of the future. And somewhere out there, the shadow continues to lurk in silence.
Uncertain of their relationship and tempted by new feelings, Rhen and Jinji must find a way to work together. The fate of humanity rests on their shoulders and the real battle has only just begun…
Excerpt: The Spirit Heir – Chapter 1 Jinji has just been freed from the dungeons of Rayfort and was brought into a finely decorated room to wait and see who ordered her release.
The entry swung open, and there he stood. Commanding. Taking up the entire frame of the doorway, hair just as bright as Jinji remembered, eyes just as sparkling.
All breath left her body and she stood speechless, still not sure if she was awake.
Rhen looked at her with an expression Jinji couldn’t read. Confusion. Horror. Sympathy. Longing. All of them or none of them, she couldn’t decide.
Jinji watched, waiting for him to disappear, to wink out of existence just like her illusions. But he seemed so solid.
Seconds ticked by but the room felt frozen in time.
Why was he just standing there? Jinji silently commanded he step forward, but Rhen didn’t move. Stubborn.
He must be real, she thought and bit her lower lip, almost afraid to find out the answer. But Jinji had waited a long time in the dark, and she would wait no longer.
Stepping cautiously forward, she approached Rhen. He watched on, impassive but not moving away. She stopped close enough to feel the heat radiating from his body, but far enough away to keep herself composed.
There were so many things to say, but her lips would not open. So many words that would not come.
Jinji wanted to collapse against him, to fall into his arms and let them catch her, protect her, convince her that it was all real. But she wouldn’t, no matter how much her body protested against her. If this Rhen were real, he did not trust her. He did not view her as a woman to comfort. He did not ache for her in the way she ached for him.
To Rhen, she was a liar. A stranger. Without Jin, he didn’t know who she was. In time, she might change that. But now was not that time.
Still, she needed to touch him, to feel his strength, his solidity.
So instead, Jinji simply reached her hand up, cupping his warm cheek—peachy against her dirty fingernails. To her surprise, his eyes softened and his hand followed, holding hers tightly against his freckles.
“You’re alive?” she asked, her emotions hanging by a thread. There was one thing her illusions could not do, one thing only a real person could create—noise.
Rhen smirked, left side of his lip raising slightly, and responded, “Barely.”
Joy flooded Jinji’s body, filling her up, and spilling over into tears that she could not contain. Just as she thought her legs could hold her no longer, that it was too much and she would fall against him just to feel his embrace, it was Rhen who faltered. Clutching his stomach, he slumped, stumbling as one leg gave out beneath him.
Against all of her predictions, Jinji was the one who caught him.
Jinji has been haunted by the death of her twin brother for ten years. Now, on the dawn of her joining, the nightmare that claimed him has returned for her.
Prince Whylrhen is determined to prevent the past from repeating itself. His kingdom is expecting a new heir, and he will stop at nothing to keep the child safe.
Though they’ve never met, the two share a deep secret—magic. Jinji can weave the elements to create master illusions and Whylrhen can pull burning flames into his flesh. But neither of them knows what they are truly capable of until a chance encounter brings them together. For their story has played out before, in a long forgotten time—an age of myth that is about to be reborn…