The Soul Summoner (The Soul Summoner Saga Book 1)

By: Elicia Hyder

The Soul Summoner is for my kids…

in hopes that it pays for college.





Special Thanks to everyone who made this book possible:



To Dr. Gopal Kunta and his staff (Hi, Rena!) - Thanks for keeping me alive to see this thing published.



To my family and friends who nursed me back to health this year.



Chris for being my in-house specialist in all things police and military related. I love you.



Matt Nichols at Mr. Maple in Flat Rock, NC for teaching me about trees.



Jane M. Wallace, BSN RN for checking my medical ramblings.



All my favorite Asheville businesses and beers mentioned in this book and the city itself for being as rad as it is.



MY AWESOME LAUNCH TEAM - I would be nowhere without you! (Alphabetically):

Nikki Allen, Elsbeth Balas, Tracie Bechard, Cindy Brown, Tiffany Cagle, R.K. Close, Erica, May Freighter, Venice Gilmore, Lina Hanson, Ashley Huttinger, Susan Huttinger, Kristin Jacques, Ara James, Tango Jordan, Juliet Lyons, Chuck Mason, Sal Mason, Tammy Oja, Wendy Pyatt, Lucy Rhodes, Megan Robinson, Melody Shalurne, Vandi Shelton, Ana Simons, Stephanie Smith, Heather Grace Stewart, Leigh W. Stuart, Jen Wander Woman, Shanna Whitten, Russ Williams, Stephanie Williams, Bridgett Wilson, Natalie Wolicki, Ann Writes





1.



HER HAZEL EYES were judging me again. God, I wish I could read minds instead.

Adrianne spun her fork into her spaghetti, letting the tines scrape against the china. I cringed from the sound. She pointed her forkful of noodles at my face. "I think you're a witch."

I laughed to cover my nerves. "You've said that before." Under the white tablecloth, I crossed my fingers and prayed we would breeze through this conversation one more time.

A small, teasing smile played at the corner of her painted lips. "I really think you are."

I shook my head. "I'm not a witch."

She shrugged. "You might be a witch."

Sighing, I picked up my white wine. "I wish I had a dollar for every time I've heard that. I could pay off my student loans." With one deep gulp, I finished off the glass.

She swallowed the bite in her mouth and leaned toward me. "Come on. I might just die if I don't get to see him tonight! Do you really want that kind of guilt on your hands?"

I rolled my eyes. "You're so dramatic."

She placed her fork beside her plate and reached over to squeeze my hand. "Please try."

My shoulders caved. "OK." I shoved my chair back a few inches and crossed my legs on top of my seat. I closed my eyes, shook my long brown hair back off my shoulders, and blew out a deep slow breath as I made circular O's with my fingertips. Slowly, my hands floated down till they rested on my knees. I began to moan. "Ohhhhhmmmm…"

Adrianne threw her napkin at me, drawing the attention of the surrounding guests at Alejandro's Italian Bistro. "Be serious!"

I dropped my feet to the floor and laughed as I scooted back closer to the table. "You be serious," I said. "You know that's not how it works."

She laughed. "You don't even know how it works!" She flattened her palms on the tablecloth. "Here, I'll make it easy. Repeat after me. Billy Stewart, Billy Stewart, Billy Stewart," she chanted.

I groaned and closed my eyes. "Billy Stewart, Billy Stewart, Billy Stewart."

She broke out in giggles and covered her mouth. "You're such a freak!"

I raised an eyebrow. "You call me that a lot."

"You know I'm only joking. Sort of."

Adrianne Marx had been my best friend since the fifth grade, but sometimes I still had trouble deciphering when she was joking and when she was being serious.

I picked up my fork again and pointed it at her. "It's not gonna happen, so don't get too excited."

She let out a deep breath. "I'm not."

I smirked. "Whatever."

Our waiter, who had been the topic of our conversation before Adrianne began gushing about her new crush on Billy Stewart, appeared at our table.

"Can I get you ladies anything else?" His Southern drawl was so smooth I had nicknamed him Elvis over dinner. He was a little older than Adrianne and myself, maybe twenty-two, and he had a sweet, genuine smile. His hair was almost black, and his eyes were the color of sparkling sapphires. I had drunk enough water that night to float the Titanic just so I could watch him refill my glass.

I looked at his name tag. "Luke, do I look like a witch?"

His mouth fell open. "Uh, I don't think so?" he stated as more of a question than an answer.

Nodding toward him, I looked back at Adrianne who was twisting her auburn ponytail around her hand. "See, Luke doesn't think I'm a witch."

He lowered his voice and leaned one hand on our table. "You're too pretty to be a witch," he added, with a wink.

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