Very interesting, very hot short story from Gena Showalter. “The Darkest Fire” is the prequel to her ‘Lords of the Underworld’ series. To be honest, I think I liked this short story best of the series yet. It’s a mixture of fantasy and romance and Showalter’s take on the sacrifices required for love according to ancient myth.
She is the goddess sentenced to maintain watch on the underworld and her duty has bonded her to the wall that contains the demons of hell. He is the guardian at the gate, who traded his mortal soul to head a feckless wife and is now a monstrous warrior. When she notices cracks in the wall, she pleads with Lucifer to allow the Guardian to help her. Instead, he offers the Guardian’s soul in exchange for an evil pact. Now, she must convince the Guardian she loves to help her save not just herself, but the innocent on Earth.
A very unusual happy ending, but entirely in accordance with stories in myth and lore. A quick and sensual tale only available in e-read.