Authors: Voirey Linger
Sequel to Risking Eternity.
There are some things an angel shouldn’t do…
Renatus is a legalist and knows the rules better than most.
But knowing the Law doesn’t stop him from imagining the press of a hard male
body against his, or remembering one forbidden kiss that left him hungry for
more. He leaves Heaven to mingle with mankind, hoping that satisfying curiosity
will quell desire. He finds Adam, a college professor who has given up on love.
Adam once dreamed of finding the perfect man and settling
down. His dreams and trust were shattered when he found out the truth about his
ex. Meeting Renatus seduces Adam into taking another chance on love. But Ren is
keeping secrets, and the only promise he will make is that he will leave.
Now the Most High has commanded Renatus to retrieve the Law
of Men and Angels, and a vengeful demon is circling, waiting for her
opportunity to strike. Staying is impossible, leaving unbearable, and Ren wants
to succumb to temptation, forsaking eternity for a life on Earth with Adam.
An Ellora’s Cave Romantica
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Forsaking Eternity Copyright © 2011 Voirey Linger
Edited by Grace Bradley
Cover art by Syneca
Electronic book publication February 2011
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This book is a work of fiction and any resemblance to persons,
living or dead, or places, events or locales is purely coincidental. The
characters are productions of the author’s imagination and used fictitiously.
A very special thanks to Peachy for throwing me a
Marguerite Labbe, I couldn’t have done it without your
Inez Kelley, this whole thing is your fault.
Sasha Devlin, KJ Reed, Mira Lyn Kelly and CM Torrens,
thanks for straightening out my screw-ups.
Angel of Annunciation
: A messenger angel. Duties are
to bring statements of Truth, to convey messages from the Most High, and to
interpret and define known Divine Law.
: Highest rank of demon. All archdemons were
angels before Hell was created and they Fell.
Cherub, (p. cherubim)
: A female angel.
: Having physical form and mass. An angel
can choose to be noncorporeal, to mask their presence by removing their
physical mass and existing on a spiritual level.
Divine Law or the Law
: A set of rules put into place
by the Most High to protect the Realms from evil. Over time many Laws have been
forgotten or misinterpreted.
The inherent freedom for any
rational being to make his or her own decision. Demons do not respect free will
and will cloud one’s thoughts to influence choices. In the end, however, the
individual must choose their own actions.
Collective term for a group of angels.
: The Most High’s ultimate ruling on the Law.
There is no appeal from His final decree.
: A small case which holds a prayer scroll.
According to Jewish tradition, this case it to be fixed to the side of the door
to the household so it is on the right as one enters. When entering the home,
the observant brush their fingers over the case, then their lips.
: The child created in the union of angel and
human, named for the ancient village of Nephil, where most lived. The people of
Nephil were strong warriors because of their angelic heritage and became feared
mercenaries in their time.
: A form of pure energy. It originates from the
Most High and trickles down through life on Earth. Power feeds infinite beings
and may be used to mask their presence, disguise their appearance, affect
objects in the physical world and heal injuries. It may also be used as both
weapon and defense in battle. Demons are cut off from the Most High and must
: A male angel.
: The candle used to light the other candles
in a menorah.
: Old English term meaning
Vault of Heaven
This is where the souls of those who have died exist on the Heavenly Plane.
Renatus frowned at the people filling the small café and
rethought his plans.
They all looked so common. So human. He should not be here,
mingling with them.
But if he left, how would he ever know? A possibility had
been raised, a question within him went unanswered. Somewhere in this
congregation, there could be an answer waiting to be found.
Gathering his courage, he stepped into the crowded sidewalk
seating area. The beautiful autumn day had enticed customers outside, leaving
few seats available. While this might be an inconvenience to some, it served
his purposes perfectly, as did the restaurant itself. This tiny shop was a
meeting place for a certain kind of human.
Men who sought other men as lovers.
And now, Ren stood among them. To their eyes he would appear
as nothing more than another human. Another male who joined them in a place of
One particular man caught his eye.
Black hair brushed his jacket collar and his blue eyes crinkled at the
when he smiled.
Ren’s breath caught.
Despite the fact his wings were now hidden, noncorporeal, he
could feel the tingle of one particular feather. In his mind, he could see the
inky smear of that lone black feather against his own plumage.
No. He was not doing this because of that feather. His
actions had nothing to do with it or the one who gifted him with it, nor was he
interested in the human because of his physical similarities. The man was
simply attractive and seated alone.
Ren shoved stray thoughts of what would never be aside and
approached the man.
“Is this seat taken?” he asked, mimicking what he had
observed over the last few months while studying the gathered humans.
The man assessed him in a head-to-toe sweep with startling
blue eyes before breaking into an inviting grin.
“No, it’s not. Would you like to join me?”
“Thank you.” Renatus tried to return the smile, but his face
felt stiff and he suspected the inviting expression he attempted appeared as
something closer to a grimace. He dropped his gaze to the mug of coffee he held
and sat down.
“My name is Douglas.” The man stretched an elegant,
long-fingered hand over the table and Ren stared at it for a flicker too long.
“I am Renatus.” He reached out and took the other man’s
“I don’t think I’ve seen you around before.” Douglas flashed
that smile again. One corner of his mouth curled up and he had a dimple.
Renatus couldn’t help but think that dimple should not have been there. Dom
didn’t have a dimple.
But this man was not Dom.
“This is the first time I’ve eaten here.” Ren tried to smile
again. He’d forgotten how to converse with humans. How long had it been since
he’d approached one in a conversation that didn’t begin with, “
“Do you work nearby?” Douglas finally asked.
“No, I don’t.”
Ren turned his mug in a circle, fidgeting while he tried to
think of what to do next. Silence fell, an awkward entity which made the scant
distance of the table seem to stretch into an unbridgeable chasm. What happened
next? Maybe he was to reciprocate with a similar inquiry?
“Do you, perhaps work nearby?”
The effort obviously came too late. Douglas’ attention had
wandered. His face relaxed into heavy-lidded invitation as he spied someone
“Excuse me, Reynolds, but I see someone I need to talk to,”
“It’s Renatus.” But Douglas was already gone and he sat
alone in the middle of the bustling shop.
Ren pulled a small packet and a miniature straw from the
holder in the center of the small table. He tore open the sugar with trembling
hands and dumped the contents in the black brew. He glanced around him as he
stirred. All around him, men went on with their conversations, ignoring him as
completely as if he’d been noncorporeal.
He should abandon the entire ridiculous idea of human dating
and mating. Why had he even considered it? Angels belonged in the Heavenly
Plane, where males mated females. He had been out of his mind even considering
He would leave, and as soon as he was out of sight, he would
return to his proper place, humbled but wiser. He glanced around, but no one
watched him, no one seemed to notice the abandoned angel in their midst.
He emptied three more sugar packets into his coffee and
whipped them in with the little straw.
“Is this seat taken?”
Ren glanced at the newcomer, barely noting him before his
gaze returned to the cup before him. Had this stranger seen his humiliation?
“It is not. I was just leaving myself. The table is yours.”
“Ah, well, then. Never mind.”
Ren’s attention snapped back to the man standing by the
table. If he didn’t want the table why did he ask to sit?
“Oh, you wanted…” How was it these creatures could reduce
him to idiocy with such ease? “I apologize. I would be honored to have you join
This man’s looks weren’t remarkable. He was actually quite
ordinary, even for a human. His eyes were brown and kind and his curly brown
hair was shot with a dusting of silver. Even his clothing was brown. A brown
tweed jacket with strange patches at the elbows topped lighter tan dress pants.
Only his shirt was white, a button-up with a hint of a white t-shirt peeking
from beneath his opened collar. Surprisingly, Ren found the simple humanity of
his features to be quite appealing. All the browns suited him.
“Are you sure? I wouldn’t want to impose,” the man said, his
“Please, there isn’t any imposition. Quite the opposite.
Company would be welcome.”
The man smiled, his pleasure at Ren’s words obvious, and
Ren’s breath caught. Merciful Heavens. The smile had transformed his common
looks into something extraordinary. He was actually very lovely.
“My name is Renatus.”
“Interesting name.” The man’s brow rose. “Latin.”
“Yes, it means…”
“Born again. Very interesting name. I’m Adam, which is a
very uninteresting name. It’s nice to meet you, Renatus.”
He held out his hand and Ren took it. Something flowed
between them, something honeyed and warm. It was as if this man had somehow
taken part of Ren’s essence, his power, changed it and returned it to him
richer, more potent than before.