Love Starts with z
It wasn’t until she stood panting over the bodies that she noticed the rope tied from the girl’s wrist to a woman, whose severed head stared back at her, teeth clacking rhythmically. Kneeling, she touched the blood stained rope and frowned. Any similarity between the two Deads had faded over the years of their decay, but they had to be related. Mother and daughter, perhaps, who’d got in a bad spot somewhere and been cornered. Tied themselves together so they’d stay side by side forever.
She wanted to weep for them.
Instead, she drew her dagger upward and freed the mother’s snapping jaws from an unfair afterlife.
She didn’t know how he’d approached so quietly, but Kaegan unhooked the small shovel from her satchel and started digging without a word. Dropping to her knees, she scooped dirt with her hands until there was a shallow grave made for two, and wordlessly, they dragged the mother and daughter into their final resting place. She cradled the child in her mother’s embrace and Kaegan covered them with the rich, black earth.
When she turned, the rest of the team stood in a quiet line near the grave, but she didn’t offer an explanation. She wouldn’t bury every one—couldn’t bury them all like they deserved—but she’d bury the ones she couldn’t live without doing it for. If the team didn’t like it, tough. She was through with apologizing for who she was.
Glaring at Mark, with his face still caked in blood, something loosened deep within her. She’d been sorry for so long, but what for? She was a monster, trying to be human, and dammit, she’d succeeded for the most part. She was a killer, the daughter of the infamous Laney Landry and Derek Mitchell. She’d been trained to fight by Finn and learned survival from Aaron Guist himself. Vanessa had gifted her speed with a blade, and she’d been raised as a daughter of the heart by the greatest leader in the known world, Sean Daniels. She was warrior, friend, ally, and enemy. She was Dead and human, and no matter which side she chose, she was traitor. Tired of apologizing for being different, this was where the winds of change turned into a fucking tsunami. She was a weapon, and they didn’t even know it.
Twenty-four years into the Dead outbreak that ended the world, Soren Mitchell sticks out like a sore thumb in the remains of the human race. She’s an anomaly: a hybrid of human and Dead, created by her mother’s genetic immunity. Like her parents, she’s fierce and strong. But despite their hopes for her happiness and safety, and even though she is no real threat to the colony, she has let the humans muzzle her and confine her within the walls of Dead Run River in search of a cure.
When Kaegan Langford stumbles into the colony with an injured friend draped across his shoulders, her world is turned upside down. Intrigued and affected by her, he asks her to come to Empalme, Mexico with him to fight in the war between Deads and humans. It’ll be a long, treacherous journey to the coast, but she’s had all she can take in the colony.
Battles with Deads, betrayal, injury, kidnappings, and a criminal-run train ride stand between them and the war. But in the end, it’s not just the war with the Deads that could be the death of them.
Tera Shanley’s final book in the Dead Rapture series will thrill your heart…and your braaaains.
Tera Shanley writes in sub-genres that stretch from Paranormal Romance, to Historic Western Romance, to Apocalyptic (zombie) Romance. The common theme? She loves love. A self-proclaimed bookworm, she was raised in small town Texas and could often be found decorating a table at the local library. She currently lives in Dallas with her husband and two young children and when she isn’t busy running around after her family, she’s writing a new story or devouring a good book. Any spare time is dedicated to chocolate licking, rifle slinging, zombie slaying, friend hugging, and the great outdoors. For more information about Tera and her work, visit www.terashanley.com.