Title: Love’s Pale Road
Author: Martin Gibbs
Series: Stand Alone
Genre: Fantasy/Romance (A Dark Love Story)
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: July 27 2014
Edition/Formats Available In: eBook & Print
Tag Line: Love is a pale road, for Death waits at the end.
Is love blind, or a beast of convenience?
Bailey, a simple farmer, has been tasked by a dead man to murder a dangerous warlock. While he follows the guidance of this otherworldly companion, Bailey finds himself alone in a scary new world.
Only a few days into the journey, he falls in love with a stranger, which upsets the best-laid plans of the deceased. And Abigail appears to have dark plans of her own: How soon will she turn the tables upon the seemingly-innocent farm boy?
The dead man should have known that trusting the living would be a losing proposition.
Love is a pale road, for Death waits at the end.
Beware the one who will betray you; for you have given them your heart.
Love is often a beast of convenience: two strangers meeting and connecting on some chemical and psychological level; sharing laughs and tears, and maybe bodily fluids.
But love can be real, when it wants to be. There are honest moments in the days we spend with our lover, there are days of sunshine and laugher, and nights of pleasure.
When it wants to be real. Love has its own designs, as poor Bailey finds out: Tasked by a dead man to perform a murderous act, he finds himself in love with a stranger. He was a simple-minded farmer, tending his turnips and his pumpkins, when the outside world burst in, sending everything he held dear to the far winds.
And so the poor chap is alone and scared when Abigail bares her pretty face. Although her family lies dead—somewhere on the path behind her—Bailey trips headfirst into the wants of his own heart, takes her hand, and carries her along a new road.
For Bailey, Love is more than a chemical reaction: It is a living thing, a living road… a pale road. A pale, murky, dangerous road.
For Death waits at the end.
Martin Gibbs lives in the snow-covered paradise of Minnesota, where he writes novels, short stories, and poetry. By day he is an IT professional, though his passion for writing has led him down an intricate network of exciting roads.
Gibbs is an avid reader. He favors the classics: Dumas, Dickens, Tolstoy, Proust, Lovecraft; as well as Stephen King, Robert Jordan, George RR Martin.
He enjoys cross-country skiing, biking, and burning béarnaise sauce. He has two very active boys who share his wild imagination, and a wonderful wife who supports all the craziness.
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“Safe? Safe? In this tunnel of Hell? Yeah, Bailey, I really don’t think so.” But she didn’t look back again. She looked at me, then ahead.
“What do you mean?”
“I mean that I’m going back. To Hell with whatever else is back there; I’ll take my chances.” She didn’t move.
No, she couldn’t leave. “Abby, I will keep you safe.”
Let her go Bailey. Let her go back. This is too dangerous for her.
“I can’t let her go! I like her, Lyn. She’s the only girl who has ever been nice to me.”
It’s a dangerous—
“Stop it!” she hissed. “Both of you. Whatever he’s saying, I can see on your face, Bailey. I—I’m very sorry. I had thought maybe this would be some sort of adventure, and I could forget…” she wiped something from her eye. “That we would go together, keep each other safe, and warm, and you’d get to help Lyn save his son.”
“We can still do that.”
“I’m afraid that won’t work out, Bailey. Demonic bats? Warlocks? The Great Temple itself under attack? My Gods Bailey, do you even realize how mixed-up all of this is? Leave the heavy work to those who can do it! Not a young farmer!”
She said a lot more, but I don’t remember all of it. But I think she was talking about duty. And who should do the duty. Fa said that you must always put others first and take care of them. I told her that. That was why Fa was going to the Great Temple.
“Yeah, but your fa left you in charge, didn’t he? He may be brave, the bravest man in the whole world, Bailey, but—”
“He is,” I said. She was starting to make me angry.
“Fine, maybe he is. Great. Then let him do this! I’m going back, so you can come back too.”
She didn’t understand. Nobody did. Fa said that it was always their own fault if they did not understand. How could I make her understand? Lyn wanted her to go back, too; he didn’t like her—why?—and I had to tell her to keep going.
“Gods, Bailey.” She tugged at her hair. “Gods! I just—” Abby breathed loudly out her nose. Like Ugly Nose. “Don’t you get it? I don’t want to die, Bailey. I don’t. Want. To. Die!”
“You will not die with me.”
For the love of—
“You cannot die with me. I won’t let it happen.”
She smiled then, and I thought for sure she would stay. Her warm hand touched my face and I smiled back. “So sweet,” she said, still smiling, but her voice did not sound sweet. “So sweet, delusional, and crazy. Gods love ya Bailey… see you later.”