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Conjure (Tethered Trilogy Book 2)

Conjure (Tethered Trilogy Book 2)

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Click To Read The Synopsis

Sometimes to understand the present you have to conjure up the past.

The last thing Addison Harmon needed was to become tethered to the broody, often seemingly cold, Theo Van Rooyen, but that's exactly what happened.

Forced to partner up with Theo to figure out a way to break the tether, Addison soon realizes she may have bitten off more than she can chew.

Click To Read Chapter One



A cool breeze whipped at my exposed skin as I stood at the edge of the cliff, staring after Theo’s retreating form. My limbs trembled from both exhaustion and the frigid breeze that had sprung from nowhere and everywhere all at once.

 Tethered, what did that even mean? 

Theo was nearly out of sight now. All I could see was the whiteness of his T-shirt glowing through the night; the tree limbs and brush were about to swallow him whole. My stomach grew rock hard as I thought about following after him and demanding to know what all of this meant, how it was all possible. Theo shouldn’t be able to wield any type of power according to Kace, and yet he had—he’d saved me with his power of Air. 

My feet moved forward as I noticed Theo had disappeared from my line of vision completely.

Knots formed in the pit of my stomach the closer I came to him. He wasn’t the type you demanded answers from. I knew this about him without really knowing him at all. 

“Why are you following me like a lost puppy?” His voice was rich and raw as it floated through the night to my ears.

“I…I need to know what happened back there, how you were able to use Air magick,” I said in a strained voice as I hurried to his side. “I need to understand what being tethered to you means.” Even I could hear the pleading tone in my voice as I squeaked out the words.

He turned to glance at me, and in the darkness surrounding us, all I could see were the whites of his eyes. But it was what I could feel that surprised me. Warmth. The same warmth I always felt when Kace touched me slipped over my body as though I could feel the trail his eyes had taken when he’d looked at me.

“It’s complicated,” he muttered, barely above a whisper. 

“Just…tell me, please,” I begged, my voice taking on a panicked, unsteady tone I didn’t care to use in his presence. “How are you able to use magick like that?”

We’d been walking down the dirt road and had come to his dark truck parked off to the side. I didn’t know why he’d parked so far from the cliff, but I wasn’t about to ask either. The chilly wind that had whipped at me near the cliff was now gone. This left me wondering if it had been Theo at all; maybe it had just been the natural breeze from the ocean. Either that or he’d calmed down enough now to control his powers. I hoped for the latter.

“I’m not like you; I’m a little known, well-kept secret,” Theo said, pausing at the bed of his truck. He reached into the chrome toolbox, which glistened in the sliver of moonlight above us, and pulled out a cloth bag. He placed all the grimy roots he’d been holding inside of it and tossed it back in the toolbox. “I didn’t have to wait to be initiated; my Hoodoo side allows me to use my elemental magick whenever I choose. Which, by the way, shouldn’t you be thanking me instead of interrogating me?” His head cocked to the side as he asked the question, and my heart sped up.

In the glimmer of light reflected off the chrome toolbox, I could make out his profile—his solid profile with chiseled features and plump, kissable lips. A slight thrill of alarm jolted through me at my thoughts. 

“Umm, thanks…” My voice sounded strange even to my own ears. There was something compelling about being in Theo’s presence. It scared me and enticed me all at once.

I mentally went over the knowledge he’d just dumped on me: his Hoodoo powers allowed him to use his elemental magick whenever he wanted. 

Now that I was tethered to him, did this notion also work for me?

“So, does that mean my magick will work now, too?” I asked timidly, feeling stupid the moment the words passed from my lips.

“No,” he said flatly. He stalked to the driver’s side door of his truck and swung it open. A loud creak from the door echoed through the night from the rusty hinges and made me jump. 

“Well…what about being tethered? What does that mean?” I asked, watching him climb into the truck without a second glance my way.

“I don’t know why we’re tethered together. It’s something we’ll have to figure out,” he said, staring straight ahead. 

His solid, dark arm reached past me for the door handle, and I stepped out of the way so he could close it. I noticed how he didn’t waste any time in starting the engine of his ancient truck to get away from me. Before I could speak another word, Theo was backing up and driving away.

I crossed my arms over my chest and stared after the glowing taillights as he slowly crept down the dirt road. Heat flushed through my body as I thought of how nonchalant he’d seemed about the whole thing. I backtracked to the clearing of the cliff, searching for the path in the brush so I could make my way home.

Kace would be waiting for me. 

I thought of the mess the house had been left in—the front door wide open, the vase I’d kicked over in my struggle to get free from the red creature, and Binks. My heart sped up once I remembered him. He’d saved me only to be tossed into the banister of the stairs and forgotten. My feet began to move faster. I had to get to him. I had to know if he was all right.

Limbs from the bushes and roots woven through the ground hindered my speed, but nothing hindered it more than my exhaustion. Autopilot kicked in at some point and all I remembered from the beginning of the path to my front porch was a hazy cloud of nothing. It seemed to fog up my mind…until the moment I saw Kace.

That was when it all came tumbling back.

He sat on the steps to my front porch with his head in his hands. The front door was wide open behind him, and through it I could see the shards of broken ceramic from the vase littering the floor. Binks still lay lifeless at the foot of the stairs. Kace looked up as though he could hear me approach. His eyes widened and he sprung up from where he sat. Rushing to me, he pulled me tightly to him in a near-suffocating hug.

“Oh my God, what happened? I got here and you were gone. The house looked like you’d been abducted and Binks…” he trailed off. “I was just about to call someone…the cops, anyone that could help me find you. Jesus, I was so worried.”

My eyes darted to Binks over Kace’s shoulder. Tears swelled within them as I took in his immobile form. I didn’t answer Kace, nor did I return his hug. Instead, I pushed free from his arms and darted up the steps and into the house to where Binks lay. I reached out, but was afraid of what I would feel when I touched him, so I drew my hand back and placed it in my lap. 

Blood trickled from someplace on Binks’s head. It had slicked his dark fur and turned a patch of white hair to a deep shade of red. A small puddle of blood had pooled around his tiny face. Tears flowed from my eyes and I heard the echoing of my sobs bounce around the silent house.

“He’s going to be okay,” Kace said in a soft tone from someplace beside me. “Magick protects him; that’s how he’s been alive for so long.”

Swiping tears from under my eyes with my fingertips, I glanced up at Kace. “What do you mean? Look at him! He is not all right! Magick did not protect him!” I shouted. 

Kace smiled sympathetically. “Sure he will be. Give him a little while to heal.” He reached a hand out to help me up from the floor. “What happened to you?” His eyes grazed over me, and I realized then what I must look like, how filthy I must be.

I accepted his hand, feeling the warmth I wasn’t sure would still be there when we touched flow through my fingers, but didn’t speak right away. Where should I start? Should I tell him Theo was an Elemental who apparently didn’t need to be initiated in order to use his magick like the rest of them? That he didn’t even have to be in the presence of others to create a balance in order for it to work? That he’d saved me and now because of that I was tethered to him? 

The glare Kace had given Theo when we’d stood outside of Putman’s Diner flashed through my mind and reminded me I had better be cautious of what I said to Kace. I was positive he wouldn’t like the fact Theo and I were now tethered to one another. 

Besides, I didn’t even know what being tethered meant.

I decided then and there that until I knew more about what had happened between me and Theo, I wouldn’t tell anyone…especially Kace. It didn’t really matter anyway; I could still feel his magick mingling with mine, which meant he could still feel it too. So, nothing had really changed between us because of the tether. This eased my conscience some.

“That thing came back. It pinned me down and started sucking…” I trailed off, knowing how incredibly crazy this next bit was going to sound, and prayed he would believe me. “…the life and magick right out of me.”

Kace’s face paled. “Are you sure it was the same thing?”


“How did you get away?” 

I glanced at Binks. “He saved me.”

“How?” Kace asked, his eyebrows drawing together. I could see the gears turning behind his icy eyes as he tried to piece everything together and gain a better picture of what had happened.

I told him everything regarding the creature and how I’d gotten away, leaving out only the things involving Theo. The story came out smoothly. In fact, it was easier than I’d thought to omit the parts about Theo when repeating it. My only mistake was that I should have simply said I’d lost the creature in the woods instead of telling Kace how it had become engulfed in flames upon touching me. This made suspicion pool in the depths of his eyes.

“How did that happen?” he asked after I’d finished speaking.

“I honestly don’t know,” I said.

Kace scratched his temple. I worried he would press further and I’d slip up somehow and end up revealing more than I should at the moment.

“Okay, well, first you need a shower. Then, we’ll get some food and something to drink into you. And then some sleep. I’ll call in tomorrow and we can spend the day together trying to figure out what that creature was. That way, if it comes back, we will be prepared. Well, somewhat. At least we’ll know what we’re dealing with anyway.”

“But what about him?” I asked, pointing to Binks.

“He’ll be okay. He just needs some time. Trust me.”

I nodded and allowed Kace to help me up the stairs, careful not to step on Binks.

“I’m going to clean up the mess downstairs,” he said as soon as we reached the top of the stairs. “If that thing comes back, just yell for me and I’ll be there in a second. I promise.”

“Thanks,” I said with a small smile, even though I knew there was no way it would be back. 

Nothing like that would come after me again. That was one perk to this tethered thing. I needed to find out if there were others, but I couldn’t do that with Kace hanging around. All of my questions would have to wait until another time.

* * * *

After I’d gotten a shower and eaten the Ramen noodles Kace had made me, I sat on the couch in the living room, sipping on a steaming cup of green tea. Kace hadn’t spoken much and neither had I. We’d merely sat in silence. I was lost in thought. How was it possible that I was tethered to Theo? His element was Air, I knew this—images of him holding me in midair before placing me on the ground beside him coincided with that—which corresponded with my Fire, but shouldn’t being tethered to him mean I couldn’t feel what I usually felt with Kace? That warmth? 

But I had. 

This was going to drive me crazy until I could talk with Theo. How was I going to approach him though? I damn sure wasn’t going to seek him out at Fisherman’s Brew or wherever it was he lived; that would put me right within his family’s hands—a place I did not want to be.

“I should call Adam and Callie in on this,” Kace said suddenly, breaking my thoughts.


Kace moved to sit down at the end of the couch where my feet rested. He lifted them and then placed them in his lap. “I really think this is over our heads. I don’t know what we’re up against or who, but we’re going to need some help with it. And you have to admit, someone coming after you sort of involves them too. After all, we do need you in order to become initiated.”

I sighed and then took another long sip of my tea. Its liquid warmth slid down my throat, calming my nerves and easing my mind at the same time. Tea is wonderful like that. “I guess you’re right. We should tell them what’s been going on.”

Kace rubbed the back of his neck. “I’m sure we can trust them. Maybe they’ll even be able to figure out who’s after you—whether it’s a jealous Elemental or a member of the Van Rooyen family.”

I nodded in agreement. Regardless of the details I’d managed to keep to myself, finding out who was behind the attacks was a good move. Adam and Callie knew more about everyone here than I did, and Kace could use another angle to look at it all from.

“I’ll call them and let them know we need to meet up sometime tomorrow.” He stood and began fishing out the cell phone in the front pocket of his shorts.

I continued to sip my tea while he left the room to make the phone call. A soft meow caught my attention, and I bolted from where I’d been sitting comfortably and darted toward the sound. Binks was just coming to. The wound on his head seemed to be entirely gone now. I gently ran my fingertips over where it had been and felt only dried fur matted together by blood. He meowed at me again, and I smiled before lifting him up and into my lap carefully.

“Hey, buddy, I was so worried about you,” I said in a whisper. I scratched behind his ears gently, the way he liked. I was answered with another faint meow. “First thing tomorrow I’m going to the store and buying you some expensive canned cat food as a treat. I owe you one, little buddy.” 

I’d never figured I would be such an animal lover, but it turned out I was.

Kace came over to sit beside me on the stairs and gently stroked Binks’s back. “Told you he’d be all right. You just had to give him time to heal.”

“How is that even possible?” I eyed the pool of sticky blood on the floor where he’d been. “He should be dead. That was horrible.”

“Magick.” Kace grinned. 


“Seriously though, that’s how it’s done. He’s pretty much immortal. A witch’s familiar usually is,” Kace said, shifting around where he sat. 

I thought of Sage suddenly, Admer’s cat from Spellbinding Reads, and wondered if she was his familiar.

“Adam and Callie said they’d be over first thing tomorrow. I’ve already sent a text to Victor at work, letting him know I won’t be coming in tomorrow night.”

Binks jumped out of my lap and headed to the kitchen. Healing himself must have made him work up an appetite. I stood, wanting to make sure he had food in his bowl, and nearly fell on my face from a sudden dizzy sensation that gripped me.

“Whoa,” Kace muttered as he launched up from where he’d been sitting to catch me before I fell. “Let’s get you to bed. I’m sure you’re exhausted.”

“I need to see if Binks has enough food.” I yawned.

“I’ll check on that after I get you safely into bed.”

With his hands placed firmly on my hips, I ascended the stairs in front of him at a snaillike pace, yawning several more times. The warmth that always seemed to ignite during our contact sparked through me and created a lulling effect. Bed sounded good.

As soon as we reached my room, Kace pulled my blankets back and I slid into bed. The pillow met with my face and that was all I remembered.

Sometimes to understand the present you have to conjure up the past.

The last thing Addison Harmon needed was to become tethered to the broody, often seemingly cold, Theo Van Rooyen, but that's exactly what happened.

Forced to partner up with Theo to figure out a way to break the tether, Addison soon realizes she may have bitten off more than she can chew.

Main Tropes

  • Beachside Town
  • Witches
  • Inherited Magic

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