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by Jane Toombs
Category: Romance/Dark Fantasy
Description: Andrea Sullivan receives a French Tarot card in the mail with a cryptic message that sends her hurrying from her home in Michigan to Gatineau Park in Canadas's Quebec Province. She expects to meet her best friend there, but instead finds Yvonne, her friend's ten-year-old daughter who tells her both parents are dead and begs for help. Though Andrea would do anything to help Yvonne, she doesn't expect to encounter Fletcher Doyle, an ex-cop searching for the girl in the park, nor to see a greenish hallucination the girl claims is the frightful dragon, Le Drac. A further encounter with the very wealthy Conway Corriveau, who insists he's Yvonne's legal guardian, winds up with Andrea accompanying Yvonne as her companion, along with Conway, to his second home in Michigan's Upper Peninsula wilderness. Strange things happen, but practical Andrea does not believe Conway is, as Yvonne insists, Le Drac. Aid comes from Fletcher, who's followed them there and is staying with his friend at an Anishinabe reservation nearby. Strange becomes bizarre, until Andrea is convinced, too late, that Yvonne was right. Now in Conway's power, she must watch in horror as he tries to take over the child. Fletcher, with the aid of his friend and an Anishnabe medicine man, tries to rescue the two, but in the end only Fletcher can free Andrea so that their combined efforts can save Yvonne from a horrible fate. Genres: Paranormal / Fantasy
eBook Publisher: Amber Quill Press, 2007
eBookwise Release Date: May 2008
2 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [371 KB]
Reading time: 235-329 min.
All Other formats: Printing DISABLED, Read-aloud DISABLED
Yvonne let go of her hand and shifted until her back was to the Droll Teller while she stared into the darkness. Andrea started to turn to see what might have caught the girl's attention when suddenly Yvonne gasped and clutched her arm.
"Le Drac!" she whispered, pointing skyward.
Andrea gazed up in stupefaction at a blur of green between her and the star-lit night sky. A gust of wind swirled around them, seeming to carry a faint whispering sound before dying away. Then she no longer saw anything in the sky except the stars.
Yvonne huddled against her, making Andrea certain the girl must have seen the greenness and heard the sound, too. Surely some of the others had as well, though not all of them had turned to look. It wasn't real, of course, but an illusion as faux as the ruined temple they sat in, something concocted by the Droll Teller's confederates to give the tourists a scare. Like the owl hoots earlier probably had been.
But Yvonne obviously didn't realize it was fake. They ought to leave at once, before the girl became more frightened. Andrea leaned to her and whispered, "Let's go." Yvonne shook her head and edged away from Andrea until they were no longer touching. "Not till he's done. He's explaining something I didn't understand before. I need to listen to find out all I can about Le Drac. In case."
"In case?" Andrea echoed, puzzled.
"Shh, we're missing what he's saying."
"Le Drac is not easy to kill, you understand," the Droll Teller went on. "His green scales are armor, all but impossible to penetrate, certainly not by a wooden sword. Yet a wooden sword is the only weapon that will bring death to this beast. Do not ask how, me, I don't know. But I tell you true. Ah, he is loathsome, he is malific, stealing children and flying with them to his lair deep within the rock.
"And this is my tale within my story. One moondark evening Le Drac swooped down over a village and caught up a little girl in his talons. He didn't know or care that a beautiful princess looking out of her tower saw what he'd done. No, not Le Drac."
His words made Andrea more and more uneasy. She wished she'd insisted they go directly to her car. Yvonne, her hands twisted together, chewed on her lower lip while she listened as though her life depended on not missing a word. Making up her mind, Andrea touched Yvonne's shoulder. The girl jumped.
"I really think we ought to go," Andrea said firmly. "No!" Yvonne's vehemence made several people glance at them, including the man leaning against the pillar. Yvonne didn't notice him but she did lower her voice before adding, "This is important. You don't understand. Please don't make me go."