Genres: Paranormal Suspense
Evil lurks within…
When Caleb Madroc is used against his will as part of his father’s plan to breed a secret alien community and infiltrate society with their unique powers, he vows to save his oppressed people and the two children kept from him. Seven years later, Laura and Ben Fieldstone’s son is abducted, and they are forced to trust a madman’s son who puts his life on the line to save them all. The enemy’s desire to own them—or destroy them—leads to a survival showdown. Laura and Ben must risk everything to defeat a new nemesis that wants to rule the world with their son, and Caleb may be their only hope—if he survives. But must he sacrifice what he most desires to do so?
She trembled beneath him. Color rushed back into her. Her bruises faded. She arched her back and gasped.
He held her to him. Her breath infused his neck with warmth.
“I just wanted to set you free,” he whispered.
“Caleb,” she whispered. “How did you save me?”
He pulled her up and put his robe on her. He would pay for losing it later. He had stowed his extra one nearby. “It doesn’t matter. You must go. Head to the road and away from town. You must reach another town and ask for help. Before night comes. Tell no one about this. Pretend you have no memory. Find a church. Someone will help you.”
She looked at him with watery eyes. “My children.”
He grasped her arms. “I will watch over them. You need to go. Now.”
She just stared at him. He shook her. “We’ll both die if you don’t.”
She nodded and hung her head. Caleb lifted her hair away from her face. It shone dark gold in the sun flickering through the trees.
She pushed her hands in his robe pockets and then drew out a piece of paper. He watched her unfold it and read it. He knew it by heart, this last poem he could give her like he’d once given her his love.
She read the last two lines aloud. “Wrapped up in my heart with no place to go. Come, unwrap my heart and set me free in you.” She looked up, a solitary tear rolled down her cheek. “You unwrapped my heart too, Caleb Madroc.”
He pulled her close. Pine cones plunked around them. The wind blew a sweet, mournful song through bare branches. Yellow swirled down. The last dying leaves of autumn. In that moment he believed they were together, out for a walk in the woods before heading home to mate by the fire. A normal life. Somewhere else. Not here. He bent down and kissed her. At first, she didn’t move and then she pressed herself into him. He stroked her hair and took her mouth as a token then he let go and pushed her off him.
“Go. Now. Be free!”
She stared at him with wild eyes and stumbled away, his poem clutched in her hand. Then she turned and ran. His cloak flowed behind her, protecting her. He watched her go. He unraveled his full heart and sent it with her. It did him no good in this place.
He wanted to leave with her, but he had to think of their sons. If he left, his father would kill them. The sun faded behind clouds. He still had work to do. He headed for the tree line to dig a fake grave. He pushed the image of the hand in the bog away. He didn’t want to know why it was there—or who put it there. There was just one person who would, but he couldn’t face that now.
It was time for his punishment for saving Thomas from humiliation.
His father would add to Caleb’s scars.
Those scars Caleb could suffer with.
The scars of Rachel and his sons seared his heart forever.
What went into creating your character of Caleb Madroc and how did you come up with his characteristics?
Twenty-five-year old Caleb Madroc in A Hidden Element took me by surprise. He is a complex man and one of my favorite kinds of character – the tormented hero. I fell in love with him so much so that he took the main stage.
I write from the dark side with a glimpse of hope and am drawn to writing the tormented hero’s journey – and tormented villain’s. I enjoy creating empathy for both by blurring the lines between good and evil. And I especially enjoy using the paranormal elements of mind control to shake the foundation of my character’s world.
All these elements came into play with creating the characteristics of Caleb. I loved taking him to the darkest of depths and even there, he still sacrifices his own desires to help others. He has a full heart brimming with love just waiting to be given away, yet has no one to give it to.
“I will protect the children. I promise. But I can’t promise to save you.”
How does Caleb change throughout the book? He discovers that he doesn’t have to be dictated by his dark genes and can choose love over hate, and hope can win out in the end – fantastic powers or not. I like to think so too.
- 1 (#) winner(s) will receive [(1) Grand Thriller Prize: Bundle of 10 e-Books donated from these bestselling thriller authors David Morrell, Allison Brennan, M.J. Rose, Steve Berry, Eric Van Lustbader, Hank Phillippi Ryan, Doug Preston, Alan Jacobson, Allan Leverone, Jenny Milchman] (approximate retail value or “ARV”: $100)
- 1 (#) winner(s) will receive [(1) Super Get Mind Blown Prize: 2 signed paperbacks by NY Times best selling author Heather Graham, The Following Season 1 on DVD, Book on Conspiracies & Secret Societies, Inception on DVD] (approximate retail value or “ARV”: $100)
- 1 (#) winner(s) will receive [(1) $100 Amazon Gift Card] (approximate retail value or “ARV”: $100)
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- 1 (#) winner(s) will receive [(1) Paperback of Donna Galanti's A Human Element, Book 1 in Element Trilogy] (approximate retail value or “ARV”: $100)
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