Wayward Magic (Magic Underground Anthologies #2) - Melinda Kucsera

Introduction

Magic.

You could ask a hundred people, “What is magic?” and you will get a hundred different definitions as we have all experienced various forms of it in our lives.

Maybe it was the time that massive SUV should have crushed your tiny hatchback until nothing remained; yet after the noise and smoke cleared, you walked away with nothing more than a few scratches. Or maybe it was when every light turned green when you needed it most as you raced towards the hospital to say goodbye to your mother. Or perhaps it was something that went unnoticed—the moment when your cat nudged you in your sleep, and your breathing resumed, or the time your dog barking woke you before the fire reached your room.

Time roll by us in an eye-blink, sprinkling us in flashes we can’t explain. What happened, why did it happen, and more importantly, why did it happen to me? Some people call them miracles, while others, magic.

While these tales take place in a variety of worlds and places, some of them unreachable to Earthlings such as we, their magic wraps around like a silent whisper. Sometimes they comfort, while other times, they remind us of our mortality. They remind us what we have, and what we should hold on to dearly, because magic is just that—magic. It’s unpredictable and non-discerning.

The authors of these stories hope you find your own small piece of magic between the pages of this book.

Let it be a hug from us to you.

A magical one.

No Sanctuary

Tiffany Shand

No Sanctuary is the second short prequel to my Rogues of Magic series. After losing her throne, Ann and Ed are on the run from Orla, who helped to kill Ann’s father and take his realm from her. Now the archdruid herself must find safety in a realm full of enemies and keep her wayward magic under control. If she can’t, she and Ed will lose more than just their lives.

Tiffany Shand

Nowhere is safe when you're on the run.

After losing her parents and her throne, Ann Valeran is now rogue and on the run from the very people who destroyed her family.

With only the help of her best friend and former bodyguard, Edward Rohn, by her side, Ann must navigate her way through the five lands to find safety. The only people to offer her refuge are the elusive resistance, who once opposed her family and everything her father’s rule stood for.

But with assassins after her every turn and having to hide her uncontrollable magic and true identity, Ann must find a way to work with the resistance or risks falling into the hands of her greatest enemy.

Chapter One

Ann Valeran ducked as an axe flew at her head. This wasn’t part of the plan for today. Where did they even come from? How did they find us? The close confines of the cave didn’t make it easy for her to dodge the blow as the axe hissed through the air above her. Why did I let Ed talk me into coming here?

A man lunged for her and swung his club toward her. She dodged the blow, raised her hand and sent him flying. Beside her, Edward Rohn, her best friend and former bodyguard, thrust his sword through one of the Fomorian demons. One after another, hulking demons with glowing eyes surged into the cave.

Another demon came at her with a battle-axe.

This was supposed to have been a safe place for them to shelter for a while, yet Orla’s demons found them once more. Heat flared between her fingers as anger heated her blood. She threw a fireball straight at