Welcome to the Release Day Blitz for
Mercury Rises by Scarlett Kol!
Celebrate the release by checking out the excerpt, and be sure to enter the giveaway!
A girl looking for a way out.Being the daughter of New America’s leader, Mercury Masters has everything a girl could want. A glamorous life full of beautiful people, and the power to have anything she wants, except for one thing—to escape. Because Mercury’s perfect life comes with secrets to keep. Dangerous secrets that if made public would destroy her, her family, and her father’s reign. Then she meets Hawk.A boy looking to be a hero.Hawk, a handsome prep school dropout turned vigilante, has his own family secrets. Deadly secrets that have haunted him since he was fifteen. But instead of fighting the ghosts of his past, Hawk has assembled a group of misfit hackers and thieves to save the future from the corrupt government of New America and the mysterious virus that is killing off its citizens. But trying to do the right thing is tough when the person you really want to save is your enemy’s daughter.A love that could kill them both.Powerful forces keep them apart, but coming together could be the key to saving New America from destruction—even though it may cost both their lives.
Mercury Rises by Scarlett Kol Publication Date: February 13, 2018 Publisher: Inkspell Publishing
EXCERPTS (PLEASE ONLY USE ONE)
Excerpt #1: Running Away
I reached into my apron and pulled out the week’s rent. “Thank you for all you’ve done for me, Bill. I really appreciate you taking me in.”
“No sweat. You work hard, and the regulars seem to like a pretty, young face around here. Stay as long as you’d like.” He took the wad of bills and slid them in his pocket. “Now get out of here. I’ll finish up. You look exhausted.”
Walking past, I squeezed his hand and continued on. As I glanced back over my shoulder, he smiled, and for a minute I thought I saw him blush. Bill was the nicest person I had met since I left. I’d miss him.
I ran up the stairs to my room. Time to move on. If there was still a chance of running into my past, I was still too close to the city. Too bad. Part of my heart hurt thinking about how I was going to let Bill down. I stopped at the door and rested my forehead against the rough wood. Maybe if I stayed the night, I could stick around and say goodbye in the morning. Better not. Fewer questions if I left now. Safer for him the less he knew, anyway.
A tight feeling spread across my lungs and up my throat as I slid the gold key in the lock for the last time, but I’d get over it. I had to. I sighed and clicked the door closed. My hand hesitated on the doorknob, the unexpected weight of a stare bearing down on the back of my head. I wasn’t alone.
Standing motionless, I scanned the darkness over my shoulder. A voice cut through the black.
“Mercury, I’ve been waiting for you.”
Excerpt #2: The Rooftop
My breath started to come in short bursts. I clamped my palm over my mouth to hold it in, or at least slow it down. Hawk rolled closer to me and took my other hand, gripping it tight.
“It’ll be okay,” he whispered in my ear so quietly I wasn’t sure if he’d even said anything out loud or if I’d simply felt the words flit across my skin.
“She couldn’t have jumped, there’s no way out over there,” the guard on the dumpster yelled to his buddy, his voice far too close.
Metal rumbled under the guard’s boots. Back and forth. Pacing.
Fingers popped up on the edge of the roof. Thick fingers with bulging knuckles and a crooked black star tattoo. I started to shimmy back, but Hawk’s squeezed my hand and shook his head.
What was he doing? We needed to get out of here. We needed to—
“We’re chasing a girl, not a damn monkey. She probably went the other way,” the second guard yelled from farther down the alley.
“I swear I heard noise from this dumpster. I know she came this way,” the first guard responded.
“Then get down, check inside it, and let’s go. I still have to go back and look for my book. My ass will be on the line if I don’t find it.”
The fingers disappeared followed by a metal bang. More footsteps and the creak of the lid opening.
“If she’s in here the smell probably would’ve killed her by now. I think I’m going to puke.”
“See. You probably heard those dumb cats. Let’s get out of here.”
Two sets of footsteps faded into the distance. My lungs started breathing again.
Neither of us moved. We just lay there, still, listening to the noisy clamor of the city at nightfall. The dark, a blanket weighing heavy on our backs. The rush of the chase had drained from my body, but my mind still ran in circles at full speed. What were all those guards doing at an inner-city shelter? What would have happened to me if I’d been caught? Why was Hawk still holding my hand?
Excerpt #3: The Studio
A cool draft whispered through the space and Hawk’s bare arms quivered, drawing my attention again. I already knew he was physically strong, but now I could see how fit he really was. My eyes took their time running over each sculpted ridge, from his collarbone to his hips at the edge of his low-slung jeans. Lean, defined muscles started in his broad shoulders and rippled into his chest and arms. He wasn’t bulky, just clean and toned and functional. Almost militant. Absolutely sexy.
But a surprising tattoo peeked out from underneath his arm and traced down his ribs. A picture of a robin. It wasn’t fresh, but the color of the bird’s red chest beamed bright enough to say it wasn’t old either. Every shape, every contour of the bird flowed, fluid and beautiful. Every detail perfect. The edges of the feathers looked soft enough to be real. Like one day it might free itself from his flesh and fly away.
Without thinking, I ran the tip of my finger along the back of the bird. Hawk twitched as our skin connected, but he didn’t tell me to stop.
“Why a bird?” I asked as I traced the wings, his exposed skin pebbling into goose bumps under my touch.
“My mom….” He turned his head to face me. The fire in his eyes had burned out. Only ashes left. “She always called me her little bird. That I reminded her of springtime. I got it for her.”
“She must be very proud of you.”
Excerpt #4: The Kiss
I put my hand on the side of his face, and he closed his eyes, resting his tight jaw deeper into my palm. The pain in his expression seemed to drift away. Falling into my hand like rain.
My pulse pounded steady in my ears. His lips less than an inch away. I ran my finger over those lips. Soft and full and just a slight bit dry that made me suddenly thirsty. I leaned forward, for the first time unsure of what to do. Kissing other guys had never made me nervous like this before. Kissing other guys had never made me shiver.
I brushed my lips against his. Testing. Waiting. Then he kissed me back. Slow. His mouth closing around mine and pulling me in. Dragging out every second.
It was the kind of kiss that felt like forever. Every touch, every taste, stretching out and lingering, lazy as if time didn’t exist. His tongue running along my lips. My fingertips brushing against the ends of his hair at the nape of his neck. Every sensation, a swirling heat under my skin, winding me higher and higher.
And then I fell. Down, down, down into all those emotions I’d dismissed because in this world there were no happy endings. Futures here were never certain. But right then, with his teeth grazing against my tongue and his hands gripping tight on my hips, everything seemed possible.
Scarlett Kol grew up in Northern Manitoba reading books and writing stories about creatures that make you want to sleep with the lights on. As an adult, she's still a little afraid of the dark. Scarlett now lives just outside Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada with her husband and two boys, but if you need to find her she's likely freezing at the hockey rink.
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