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Authors: Dee Carney

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Intimate Whispers

BOOK: Intimate Whispers
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Intimate Whispers

Dee Carney

Whispers from the dead are everywhere…because their greatest desire is to be heard.

Sabrina Turner has found only one way to stop the curse she was born with—allow an incubus to worship her body in exchange for halting the voices drowning her sanity.

Every time she succumbs, it’s an act of desperation. Yet she’s not sure if she wants to be rid of the bittersweet release.

All Jason Raines wants is to communicate one last time with his deceased brother.

When he discovers his seductive neighbor speaks to the dead, it’s another reason to get close to her. The visions and cryptic dreams Sabrina’s experiencing are messages for him, he’s sure of it. Whatever her price, he’ll pay it. When a reluctant Sabrina opens the doorway to the other side, though, he discovers the cost may be higher than he first thought.

Her urgent search for freedom…his crucial need for absolution…a burning love between them offers their only hope of salvation from—intimate whispers.

Ellora’s Cave Publishing

www.ellorascave.com

Intimate Whispers

ISBN 9781419936210

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Intimate Whispers Copyright © 2011 Dee Carney

Edited by Grace Bradley

Cover design by Syneca

Model: Jasmine

Photography: Konrad Bak/Shutterstock.com

Electronic book publication October 2011

The terms Romantica® and Quickies® are registered trademarks of Ellora’s Cave Publishing.

With the exception of quotes used in reviews, this book may not be reproduced or used in whole or in part by any means existing without written permission from the publisher, Ellora’s Cave Publishing, Inc.® 1056 Home Avenue, Akron OH 44310-3502.

Warning: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. No part of this book may be scanned, uploaded or distributed via the Internet or any other means, electronic or print, without the publisher’s permission. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000. (http://www.fbi.gov/ipr/). Please purchase only authorized electronic or print editions and do not participate in or encourage the electronic piracy of copyrighted material. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.

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.

The publisher and author(s) acknowledge the trademark status and trademark ownership of all trademarks, service marks and word marks mentioned in this book.

The publisher does not have any control over, and does not assume any responsibility for, author or third-party Web sites or their content.

INTIMATE WHISPERS

Dee Carney

Intimate Whispers

Chapter One

The onslaught of noise inside almost drowned the sounds of the city night outside, which was still teeming with life. Taxis drove by, honking horns. Pedestrians chattered as they went about their business. Inside the store, however, shoppers muttered to themselves while staring in horror at outrageous prices. She’d know. She’d done the same until about three minutes ago. As clamorous as the combined sounds should have been, they didn’t hold her attention.

Only a few minutes ago, the first voice started. It would soon bring more, as always.

Those hateful, incessant pleas that refused to hear her. To understand she had no control over the fact they were trapped. Earthbound until some force, some god who sympathized with their plights, released them. In the beginning, she tried to get them to understand. She spent hours pleading, days bargaining, weeks begging. They refused to listen, though. They focused on their absolute insistence that she help them.

She couldn’t help them!

And that they were always behind her, each voice like a tickle, still resulted in a start. One minute she’d be standing there minding her own business, and in the next, well, in the next, someone spoke against her ear with the closeness of a lover.

He promised to keep them away, and for a little while, it worked, but never for long enough. Never long enough, at all.

Help me.

She knew better than to respond to a voice out loud, it always brought down more trouble than she was prepared to handle. But the insistence, the desperation behind their cries… God, it got to her every time.

“I can’t help you,” she murmured with a furtive glance at her surroundings. No one stood in the current aisle with her. If she kept her voice low enough, no one in the next aisle over should be able to hear her hushed reply either.

Find James.

A new voice. A woman this time. Her heart clenched at the thought James might be a long-lost son. Or maybe a true love the woman had left behind.

Help me.

The original insistent voice spoke a little louder this time. Always from behind. No matter how many times she tried to catch a glimpse of one of them, no matter how quickly she whirled on her feet looking for all the world like a maniac, feeling even crazier, no one stood there. Never ever stood there. Yet those damn disembodied voices carried on the moment she stopped moving.

“Hey, lady.”

5

Dee Carney

That was a new one. Often they knew her name. Calling her “lady” was simultaneously a bad and a good thing.

“Yes?” she answered. Her voice remained low, her senses on alert for someone who might turn the corner and find her in the midst of a conversation with herself.

Help me.

Or it sounded like “help me”. The voice had taken on a ghostly quality, with almost an echolike effect. Like more than one person called to her now.

Help me.

Yes. At least two people. Maybe three.

She pulled her hair over her ears because she’d been down this road one time too many. She knew what came next. The voices would multiply. The requests, the demands would become more forceful. Always it began like this. Always a single phrase that soon became repeated by more than one of them.

“Lady, you need something? This ain’t no parking lot.” Her heart thrummed steadily, a low quiver of almost useless activity. If she closed her eyes now, a wave of vertigo would envelop her, but what other recourse did she have? It helped a little when she did. And all she needed was a little time. Just long enough to walk the couple of blocks home. Get back there and get help.

The din grew louder now and a heartbeat that only seconds ago didn’t seem strong enough to support life, pounded with such force, her breath caught.

“Fucking crazies. Always gotta come in here during my shift.”
Help me

Find James

Tell Mary

Our Father who art

So many now. Too many to distinguish. She needed to get home. She needed His help now. Please, someone, help me get home.

Only the universe and whatever god ruled it probably laughed at that prayer. No merciful being would send her the kind of help she needed when the voices grew in numbers like that. No divine force would have cursed her with this kind of torment to begin with.

“Listen, either you buy something or you gotta go.” Sabrina opened her eyes, gulping down air with the hopes the bile threatening to rise would stay down with it. A middle-aged man wearing a worn polo shirt and cheap Dockers knock offs stood in front of her. He wore a mask of confusion and irritation.

And those damn voices kept growing louder. So loud, she had to focus on his lips to understand what he said. Something about buying something?

She had groceries in her cart a few minutes ago. She came down here for some cookies, a box of cereal, a half gallon of milk and toothpaste. The latter item actually the object of the two-block trek. So why didn’t he think she was here to buy something? The items lay right here in…the cart.

Where was the cart?

6

Intimate Whispers

Sabrina whirled. This wasn’t the aisle she was on. Shaking her head, she fought against the thought. Obviously, this was the aisle in which she stood. Only seconds ago, she stood next to the pharmaceutical sundries. Bottles of aspirin and cough syrups. One aisle over from the mouthwash and tooth whiteners.

At what point had she moved to the aisle where they stashed magazines and books? The one with lines of chocolate bars and cookies stocked richly enough to become the nightmare of any parent with a wayward child.

The store employee’s worn face looked as haggard as she felt.

“I…” She faltered. Maybe a dozen or so requests from disembodied voices filled her ears. Hard to hear herself think. She had to get them to quiet down. Just for a little while. Please. “Stop. Please.”

He frowned at her. “Stop?”

“No, not you.” Shaking her head didn’t help at all. If she focused hard enough, between reading his lips and pushing through the crowd, she heard him a little. Did she have to go through this every time? Every single goddamn time?

But wait. She had to focus on the fact she’d traveled across the store without realizing it.

“Lady, are you okay?”

Her eyebrows knitted against the noise. She reached out for stability by putting her hand on a nearby shelf, only to end up knocking a few boxes onto the ground.

“Hey!”

“I can’t help you,” she offered to the voices. They never listened, but maybe this time they would. They had to. She couldn’t take much more and if He didn’t want to help now, she’d be hosed until He did. “Please go away.”

“Go away?” The man reached forward and grasped her arm. She knew this because the voices scattered like flies fleeing hot garbage after he touched her. They drifted in and out of her hearing, a little disturbed perhaps by his presence. “You come in here and loiter for hours without buying something…” Hours? Had she really been here hours? It’d only been a little after five in the evening when she ventured to the mart. What time was it now?

She glanced down at her watch and gasped. Nine-forty.

The voices swooped in like vultures after prey. If the man’s touch bothered them before, they retaliated with an excruciating volume.

Had to get home now. Had to find Him. Beg Him to help. She’d lost almost five hours listening to the echoes of the dead and only He could help her now.

My daughter

Richard needs

Help

Where am I…
?

“Please, I’m sorry.”

They grew louder. So many. Too many to deal with. She had to get home.

Please God. Get her home.

7

Dee Carney

Help me

Find Felice

“I can’t help you!” she shrieked.

“That’s it, lady. If you don’t leave right now, I’m calling the police.” She wanted to go home so badly, but they crowded her. The voices kept her immobilized. Blinded with indecision, she reached out, sought his help. Show her the door and she’d go home. She’d find the way if he’d help.

BOOK: Intimate Whispers
12.54Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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