by Aedan Byrnes
In the blackest night, with the moon and stars to guide him, she would always be there waiting…
Cyrenna thought she died the day she watched Tynan and his brothers jump through the banishment portal in an act of solidarity with Rigor. Little did she know, it would be the first of many deaths she would experience in her quest to claim his heart. She would surrender not only her immortal soul, but a mortal one repeatedly. Through a deal with the great Oracle, she has multiple mortal lifetimes to change the direction of her future and have a chance with Tynan.
Her journey spans the ages from the GenPei War in Japan and the Silk Road west, to Cromwell, the Three Kingdoms and modern times, bringing her one step closer to forever until she makes a misstep. Then, the burden falls to Tynan. The only thing that is absolute is her fervent hope that he will come, but there’s one big problem.
Through it all, he doesn’t so much as know her name.
Read an excerpt:
That single word coupled with the tangling and untangling fragrance of her, become a vortex in my mind. Rational thought collides with irrational thought, wants, and needs. All of them together, do battle with my better self. Standing up, my feet are unsteady; my head is a carnival ride of haphazard motion, and my inner wild is desperately cleaving for release. I can hear her heaving for breath as quietly as she is able and can smell the palatable desperation to remain in control and calm. I have to back away or it will be over before I can form a thought to stop it. I am too close to losing the battle with my other self and I have less ability to restrain him of late. I am not master of myself right now. I’m too close. Mistakes made years ago will not be repeated. It is a hard reminder in the back of my mind. I have to back away or risk destroying another who might finally, so many years after Ite, be worth the challenge to learn.
Backing up, I find myself stumbling backwards, the mad tumbling bramble in my mind cluttering all rational thoughts and abilities. Lights flash against darkness in my mind, leaving momentary blindness in their wake and confusion. Images slideshow with lightning quickness; her standing in the moonlight, then it isn’t her at all but another who looks at me with sorrow, courage and compassion. More images come of her shivering to maintain control as I stroked an ice cube down her cheek; back to the other her, shivering from a different kind of stroking. The back and forth are disorienting and I find myself ass-planted on the floor with a ‘whump’ grabbing for my temples to stop the onslaught of the ensuing madness. The back and forth comparisons will not be still.
Kneading my eyes with the heels of my hands I shake my head to clear the fog from my addled brain. I am aware that she is not able to see me and that is a small mercy, though as I settle I can smell the cloying damp earth smell of her sobbing in confusion. The smell of her tears is nearly my complete undoing as my other self surges forward to rage at memories. I clamp down hard on the past and the storming emotions to wait. I am rewarded with the low tone of her breath hitching across her vocal chords as she rights herself and regains her composure. Sadly, for both of us, it isn’t enough. I want more.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
There is no simple description for Aedan Byrnes. Obsessive, dreamer, reclusive, compulsive, outdoorsman and wordsmith would be among the list if one were started. The displaced Gael lives in the upper Midwest with family between jaunts wherever the road takes him. A frequent traveler, he is as likely to be found rock climbing or spelunking as sitting fireside dreaming or aimlessly floating away.
A lifelong lover of words and writing, he claims a diverse reading appetite and his writing reflects the myriad influences. A self-proclaimed 'reader's writer', he looks for the emotional and the sensory in word combinations, not just the visceral comprehension of phrases in the stories he crafts and his love of all things literary shines through.