Updated: Jan 21
Of Flame and Fate
by Cecy Robson
Published by Cecy Robson, LLC
Book #8 in the Weird Girls series,
Book #2 in the Weird Girls:Flame series
Taran Wird, who commands the power to wield fire and lightning,
is an oddity in the supernatural world. But neither Taran nor her unique sisters compare to the bizarre entity known as Destiny. And Taran is assigned to protect her. Born of two witches, Destiny is revered among the supernatural elite for her acute ability to predict the future. Her biggest prophecy involves Taran’s sister, Celia, whom Destiny decreed will bear children strong enough to take on the evil that’s rising. Yet Destiny is not alone in her predictions, or individuality. When Johnny Fate, a rock star among humans and a male version of Destiny is discovered, his powers and Destiny’s clash, triggering the start of Destiny’s demise and altering the fate of Celia’s unborn children. Taran, her werewolf lover Gemini, and their allies must determine if it’s Fate who will decide what will become of Celia’s children, or if their lives and the world will perish with Destiny.
RATED: 18+ CATEGORY: MOOD:
Steamy Supernatural Exciting
Of Flame and Fate is the eighth novel in the Weird Girls series, and the second in the weird girls: flame series. It's centered around Taran, who has been assigned to be Destiny's guardian, when it all goes to shit when Destiny meets Fate, a being who cannot exist in the same time as her, and she slowly weakens and begins to die.
This book humanizes Taran in a way she hasn't been to date. We know she is crazy strong, and fierce. We know she is funny. We know she loves deeply. In this story though, she gives in to her maternal side, and befriends Fate, while being heartbroken over Destiny's fading life. She cares for him, sympathizes with him because she recognizes her past pain in him. I have predictions for his character, but I will get to that. This book was a set up for something big to come in the war ... but it also gave us a little bit more knowledge about the Wird girls "curse." Destiny says the good and bad have known of them since the dawn of time. They were always meant to have these powers. They were always meant to be on the side of good. And they were all meant to have children who would join together to end the evil. In a way, Fate himself triggered Taran's want to even take that step with Gemini (who told her earlier in the book that he wanted to start a family with her). He brought out her softer, gentler side with his need to be loved and protected, and I think he knows it. It was a nice addition to a character who could be a little emotionally detached at times.
The more I read from Taran's point of view, the more I fall for Gemini. He is the perfect mate for Taran. The calm to her storm. Logic to her craziness. He is patient. Even when things are happening that he doesn't like, he growls. He voices his displeasure. But he doesn't react until he knows he needs to. He understands Taran beats to her own drum, and respects it. I love a male love interest who truly respects his partner, even if he doesn't personally agree with what she is doing.
We don't get a whole lot of Celia and Aric in this book, as they are mostly hidden away and protected. Celia is obviously miserable. Being the strong, capable fighter she is, it must be hard to watch so many sacrifice themselves to protect her and her unborn child, and not be able to do anything. We get to see them again when Misha is having what I refer to as a panic attack. Celia being the only one who could get close to him, and calm him down is not surprising. And when she asks if he is hurting, and he looks at her pregnant belly and says yes, its kind of heartbreaking. He still loves her deeply.
Which leads me to Misha. Taran felt his power. She knows now that he is now more powerful than his master, Uri. He is perhaps more powerful than what the weres were fearing he would become in time. I don't think they need to worry too much though. Despite arranging a marriage, and planning to have a son with his bride in the future, and in turn, making him even more powerful, he loves Celia. She is probably his only true friend, and while he loves her and wants her, he loves her enough to let her be happy with her mate. He won't use that power he has gained by doing anything that would every hurt Celia.
I want to frigging know what is going on with Emme and Bren!!!! There is some debate between the weres, and Taran, but I am siding with Taran on this one. The wolves think Bren is just sexually frustrated, and is attracted to Emme, as she is the only unmated one in the group. Taran can tell though, that Bren and Emme are mates. When Bren kissed Emme, it triggered something. Emme is sad, because she knows they are mates, and Bren, fighting with his lone wolf instincts, fights it. I haven't seen anything posted about the future of the series. As I type this, the next book doesn't come out for a week (but I received an ARC, and my review will come out before this one even does), so I don't know if we will finally get these two together, or if Emme will be getting her own series, and it happens there. Who knows?
Speaking of mating, was anyone surprised that Tye and Destiny were mates? I wasn't, but I hate that they don't realize it until she is dying. Tye's agony throughout the book, watching his best friend and the love of his life slowly fading before his eyes, kept me from liking Fate the whole book, which turned out for the best. I'm glad Destiny ends up living, and becomes something even more powerful. The book, with all its heartbreak and pain, needed Taran walking into her house and catching Tye and Destiny going at it on the dining room table. It ended with a laugh, and I loved it.
Predictions ... I think Gemini is right in his prediction that Fate knows Taran will be the one that kills him. In the end, he sided with the shapeshifters, but I think there is still good in him. Taran saw it, and showed him friendship when no one else would. I hope I am right in thinking that he is setting things up for Taran and her allies to win, even knowing he will die. I suspect that he will have a part to play in the next book. Of Flame and Fury is a pretty telling title ...
I really enjoyed this book. While it still had lots of action we are used to in the Weird Girls series, it added a lot of depth to these characters, which sometimes the past books have lacked. We get a new side to Taran, which makes her even more likable, and hints to a future where all the Wird women get their happily ever afters with their mates, and all end up having children. We get a happy ending for Tye, who has always been in the back of my mind since meeting him in one of the older books, and I have always wanted a win for him. And while there are plenty of moments of cheesy gore in this series, this book really dialed it back, without taking away from the action. I loved it, and I can't wait to read the next one!
Top 3 Favorite Moment
1. The helicopter ride where Koda is pilot
2. Celia coming to Misha and calming him down after Taran's vision of skulls
3. Taran walking in on Tye and Destiny going at it on her dining room table.
Where to buy:
Misha: "Don't let it reach her heart."
Taran: "What's it going to do to my heart? It's going to eat my freaking heart isn't it?"
Agnes: "Don't be ridiculous."
Taran: "Okay ..."
Agnes: "It needs your heart to nest and lay its eggs."
Edith: "But yeah, then the hatchlings will munch on your heart like raw steak."
Gemini: "The vampires have the means to ghost you around the world, not for the earth;s or the Alliance's gain, but for theirs. Each relic is power they accumulate to do as they wish, regardless of what the rest of us need or desire."
Taran: "I know. But whatever relic I find doesn't just go to any vampire."
Gemini: "No. It goes to one of the most powerful in existence. As the only known vampire with a soul, Misha will one day be unstoppable."
Taran: "I agree, but the only reason he has a soul is because Celia returned it, giving him back some of his humanity, as well as his heart."
Gemini: "You're giving him too much credit."
Taran: "And you're not giving him enough. He loves her, Tomo, and because he does he'll protect her, using the relics if it comes down to it."
Gemini: "Is that what he told you?"
Taran: "He didn't have to. I just know he will. You can't dismiss what Misha and Celia have been through."
Gemini: "Do not insult my alpha by comparing his matehood with Celia to whatever affections that leech feels toward her."
Taran: "That leech helped save her life."
Mrs. Mancuso: "Taran Wird! Are you naked?"
Taran: "No, I have a fucking blanket."
Gemini grabs Taran before she falls, but her breasts slip out
Mrs. Mancuso: "You are naked!"
Taran: "No shit."
Mrs. Mancuso: "Take your disgusting body and your even more disgusting suitors elsewhere!"
Taran: "I did. Your son-in-law says hello."
Mrs. Mancuso: "You whore."
Gemini hoists Taran into his arms
Taran: "Damn it, woman, don't you have children to lure into your gingerbread house!"
Shayna: "I know you've had a rough night and all, T, but try not to upset the furries. They don't like evil things especially when they're trying to hatch other evil thingies inside you. You know what I mean?
Taran: "What about you? Are you still at the club?"
Shayna: "Yup. The eagle has landed. She's in the nest and watching the eggs."
Taran: "What about the other vamp, is he still there?"
Shayna: "Did you hear me? The eagle is in the nest -the nest- and she's watching the eggs."
Taran: "Shayna, I don't know what that means. Please speak a language I can understand."
Shayna: "You're cranky."
Guy: "Hey, baby. Looking for a good time?"
Taran: "Looking to chop wood? Fuck off, Paul Bunyan."
Taran: "Really? After the chunks, this is what grosses your ass out?"
Destiny: "Taran! You didn't get eaten!"
Taran points at her and makes a clicking sound with tongue
Taran: "Not yet, girl."
Taran: "I didn't make her lie, and honestly, it's like that woman can't wait for a fight ... Wait a minute, is Shayna going all wolf?"
Celia: 'The Elders don't think so, I mean not to the point where she'll change and go furry. But they think that the wolf essence that was passed to her has stirred a primal need to hunt. Based on his growls, Koda would prefer she gather."
Taran: "She gathered that decapitated head rather nicely."
Taran: "Sons of Anarchy called, you didn't get the part. They think you're full of shit, and P.S. you're an asshole."
Security: "I'm warning you, lady. You better put that shit away."
Shayna's sword cuts through the air with a swoosh, slicing the stand in half and splitting the guard's T-shirt. He glimpses from his exposed chest back at her.
Shayna: "Dude, that's me telling you to run."
Damn it. I hate the woods. Nothing good besides Bambi has ever come out of that shit.
Fate: "You're a werewolf, aren't you?"
Gemini: "That's right."
Taran: "You've never seen a werewolf?"
Fate: "Sure. Plenty of times. They just don't see me. Right, big guy?"
Gemini growls at him and Fate looks at Taran for help.
Taran: "Don't taunt the big bad wolf. Unless you want to be eaten."
Taran: "I'm sorry. But I'm sick to death of all this mystical shit. It's always something with you people."
Gemini: "You people?"
Taran: "That's right, you people. It's always doom, gloom, and destruction, always. Whether it's some prophecy saying we'll sprout six tails if we wear green on Wednesday during a full moon while watching Seinfeld or finding some messed up artifact that opens a portal to hell - and don't get me started on that damn singing knife you shouldn't insult or risk having it stab you in the ass while you sleep."
Gemini tries shushing Taran, but she doesn't.
Taran: "And now you're telling me the lead singer of some boy band with freak of nature skin is bringing on the apocalypse?"
Gemini: "I never said anything about the apocalypse. At least not at the moment."
Fate: "And I'm not in a boy band."
Taran: "Oh, now you have something to say?"
Fate: "What are you? You're not a witch or a beast. And I don't think you sprout fangs either."
Taran: "No. But I have been known to bite."
Bren: "Taran, do not set us on fire."
Taran: 'How long has Koda had his license?"
Bren: "Not long enough."
Helicopter does another odd maneuver that's more like a spiral than anything a helicopter should be able to do.
Bren: "Christ. Did Koda actually get his license?"
I expect several loud growls from Koda telling Bren to screw off. Aside from the sound of the blaring engine and whipping blades, there's nothing. Bren straightens.
Bren: "He doesn't have a license?"
Gemini clears his throat.
Taran: "No. Oh, no, no, no, no, no. Tell me you didn't shove us onto a plane with a wolf who doesn't know how to fly. I'm serious, tell me he has a license, a permit, something!"
Gemini: "Koda took flying lessons at a young age and accrued several hours toward his license. He was considered a natural and a gifted student by his instructor."
Bren: "I don't care if he graduated at the top of his class in airplane school or whatever the fuck. Does he have a license or not?"
Gemini: "No. His instructor was beheaded during a mission to Indonesia before Koda could take the final exam."
Taran: "Of course he was. Of course. So then what were all those fly dates he had just recently?"
Taran: "Lessons? He was still taking lessons?"
Gemini: "It was more like a refresher course. As I said, he was considered gifted."
Taran: "By the guy who lost his head in Indonesia."
Bren: "You stuck us ten-thousand feet in the air with some asshole -"
This time Koda does growl: loud, deep, and challenging.
Bren: "Your mother. Why in the hell did you think this was a good idea?"
Gemini: "I never said this was a good idea. But I trust Koda and we were out of options. We have to get back to the Den. We have to figure this out."
Bren: "And we will. If we live."
Taran: "I just hope we don't hit the side of the mountain."
Bren: "No shit."
Emme: "Perhaps males of their kind are stronger."
Bren: "As opposed to females in general? Hey. Just asking."
Emme: "What would you know about being strong?"
Bren: "More than you think, doll."
Taran: "What the hell? Seriously, what is it with you guys lately? You're behaving like bitter exes instead of close friends."
My mouth pops open when both find someplace else to look.
Taran: "Did you - Are you sleeping together?"
Bren: "Not exactly."
Taran: "Not exactly? How do you 'not exactly' sleep with someone?"
Bren: "I kissed her, all right? It was no big deal"
Emme regards him with so much hurt, it takes all I have not to launch myself across Johnny and beat the cockiness right out of Bren.
Taran: "You asshole. Did you know about this?"
Gemini: "I didn't know the details. Based on their mutual ... aromas when they're around each other, we've had our suspicions."
Gemini: "Aric, Koda, and I."
Taran: "And you didn't tell me."
Gemini: "Taran, it happens. When lone wolves join a pack, they often become attracted to unmated females during, ah, certain periods."
Taran: "Are you trying to tell me Bren is in heat? With my sister?"
Bren: "Hey. Bren can hear you."
Taran: "No way."
Bren: "Taran, look."
Taran: "Don't sit here and tell me all this is you being horny."
Bren: "I'm not doing anything."
Bren: "I told her it wasn't a good idea."
Emme presses her lips together, something she does when she's trying not to cry. That's when I finally get it. She doesn't just like him, and he doesn't just want to sleep with her. They're mates. Holy shit, they're mates. And he won't do anything about it!
Taran: "Stay away from her."
Taran: "I'm serious, Bren. If you're not going to man up, you need to keep your fucking distance."
His eyes flash with anger and more emotion than I'm used to. I expect him to argue, he doesn't, and in a way it upsets me more.
Bren: "I will."
Shayna: "It's still there, T. It's just sticking up a little. Like an afro. But I think Genevieve can fix it and give you back your eyebrows."
Taran: "My eyebrows?"
Shayna: "Totally. You fried them and your lashes clean off. But don't worry. I don't think anyone will notice and, on the plus side, you may never need another bikini wax again."
Taran: "Oh, God."
Taran: "We're going to figure this out."
Taran: "You don't believe me, do you?"
Celia: "Not one word."
Gemini: "I want us to try for a family."
Gemini: "A baby. I want you to have my child."
Taran: "You want to have a baby. With me?"
Gemini: "No, love."
Taran: "Oh, good. Glad we had this talk."
Gemini: "I want to have several with you. I'm ready when you are."
Taran: "I've always believed it's safer to be an aunt. Then you never have to worry what will happen to your children if you're gone. But then you came along."
Taran: "You're going to make me say it, aren't you?"
Gemini: *chuckles* "Yes."
Taran: "And my world changed in ways I could never counted on."
I rub against him, allowing my hips to speak my desire as I kiss his lips.
Taran: "I like you. A lot."
He sits up, cuping my cheek.
Gemini: "You like me?"
His teeth take a nibble and giving my lip a pull.
Taran: "Mmm-hmm. I say you're a keeper."
Gemini: *laughs* "I'll remind you of that next time you're mad at me."
Taran swirls her tongue around Gem's thumb
Taran: "Don't give me a reason to get mad and you won't have to remind me."
Gemini: "Don't do anything crazy and I won't give you a reason to be mad."
Taran: "Now, babe, when have I ever done anything crazy?"
He looks at me.
His eyebrows raise.
Taran: "In the last thirty minutes?"
He unsnaps the top of my jeans.
Gemini: "You've been good these last ten minutes, I'll give you that."
I stroke my body against his
Taran: "Good? Oh, and here I thought you liked me naughty."
Taran: "Fine. But try not to be your growly self. You know I only like those sounds in bed."
Gemini: "Do you have to wear those? I assumed you learned your lesson the last time you chased Fate."
Taran: "Hmm. Are you trying to tell me he'll outwit and outrun you wolves, and that it will be up to little ol' me to catch him?"
The wolves around them scoff.
Taran: "Then don't worry about it. Besides, you don't seem to mind the heels when I wear them to bed."
A few wolves glance over their shoulder, trying not to chortle at Gemini's beat red face.
Taran: "Turn around. This is a private conversation and considering you spend most of your lives naked and womanless, you have no room to judge. The cute shoes stay."
Gemini: "I suppose it's too much to ask for you to be practical."
Taran: "In my world, fashion is more important."
Gemini: "In my world, footwear you can run in keeps you alive."
Taran: "I can run in these."
Wolf: "Can you climb a tree in them?"
Taran: "Why would I need to climb a tree?"
Wolf: "To escape. You know danger. Human women have been known to do that."
Taran: "Sweetheart, I'm not exactly human. And if I'm in danger I'm not climbing a tree. I'm burning it and the whole damn forest down if I have to."
Emme: "She looks beautiful."
Tye: "She was always beautiful."
Taran: "You're right. He was an asshole. God rest his soul."
Gemini: "You keep saying that, but I'm not blind to how he looks at you or how he seeks your touch."
Taran: "It's a comfort thing. He's lonely."
Gemini: "The only thing he's lonely for is you in his bed. Next time he touches you, he'll have to draw his arms back on with his toes."
Taran: "He doesn't mean that."
Fate: "I think he does."
Taran: "Don't do that."
Fate: "I'm not doing anything."
Taran: "Yes, you are. You're demonstrating fear."
Fate: "I'm not demonstrating. I'm fucking swimming in it. Did you hear that guy? The one in the gargoyle head? He sounded possessed!"
Taran: "That's just Hank."
Fate: "Hank? So Hank is all right? He won't hurt me?"
Bren: *laughing* "Are you kidding? He would totally rip out your kidneys."
Bren: "Well, he would."
Taran: "It doesn't matter."
Fate: "It doesn't matter. These are my kidneys we're talking about."
Taran: "You're the Fate. You have to walk into that compound like you're the baddest mother fucker in the room."
Gemini: "Just don't verbalize it."
Bren: "Oh, yeah. Totally don't verbalize that shit. Unless you want to kiss those kidneys goodbye."
Hank: "Look who's here. My favorite weird sister."
Taran: "And look at you! My favorite - never mind. I hate all of you."
Agnes: "It is an insult to keep the master waiting. Do you want me to drag you there?"
Taran: "Do you want me to set you on fire, or for my boyfriend to show up here with his pack and drop kick your front gate open? Don't get your thong in a bunch. I'll be with you in a second."
Agnes: "Just so you know, Celia is my favorite."
Taran: "I'm sure she'll sleep better at night knowing that, Agnes."
Taran: "What makes you so sure you'll produce a son over a daughter?"
Misha: "I'll simply will it to happen."
Taran: "Oh, yes, I heard about your semen."
Misha: *laughing* "My what?"
Celia: "Misha, it's Celia."
Misha: "I know who you are."
Celia: "You should. We're friends."
Misha: "I called to you."
Celia: "Yes. I heard your voice whispering in my head. I'll always hear you when you need me to. Do you hurt?"
His stare falls to her belly. There's no hiding her pregnancy from the world, not anymore, and especially not from Misha.
Gemini: "What are you doing?"
Taran: The same thing I always do, baby. Getting ready to burn shit down."
I don't wait. I race up the wooden porch steps and into the house, out of my mind with joy and bearing a smile as large as life. That smile drops when I find Destiny and Tye going at it like horny gorillas on my dining room table. Tye's jeans and boxers are down to his ankles, exposing an ass only partially obstructed by a pair of zebra-stripe clad legs crisscrossed over his back. He pumps away, growling deep as hot pink plumage floats away from whatever ungodly headpiece Destiny is wearing. I don't stick around to see it. I walk out, slamming the door shut behind me.
Gemini: "Are they coming?"
Taran: "That's what it sounds like."
His eyes round as he stares at the door, hearing something I'm more than glad to miss. I shudder as I reach the bottom of the steps, and shudder a little more when another visual of them fills my mind. Son of a bitch, we eat Thanksgiving dinner on that table!
Gemini jogs after me when I stomp down the walkway and cut into the path leading to the Lake. He's laughing so hard, he's gripping his sides.
Taran: "You think this is funny?"
I rub my eyes, but some things you just can't unsee.
Gemini: "Oh, hell yes. It's what mates do, Taran. After everything they've been through, they deserve to make u for their time lost. As do we."
Taran: "I know, but why do they have to make up that time all over our dining room table?"
Gemini: "Probably because they've already defiled the kitchen."
Taran: "Oh, gawd."
Check out the prequel novellas, and the rest of the Weird Girls series below!
(If picture has no link, it's because the review hasn't been posted yet. Stay tuned!)