Dark Irish Demon


Leigh Ann Edwards

Tall, dark and devilishly handsome Lorcan Wright can spot evil better than anyone. As a half-demon, he knows it well, and numbs his own urges with alcohol and the many women eager to share his bed. Now, however, he’s determined to use his supernatural abilities for good. His job locating and assessing magical beings at the LAMB agency seems perfect… until he disagrees with them on which evil beings should be destroyed. 

Lovely Fiona Maguire is a strong, independent woman who’s been around long enough to trust her instincts. She’s also a powerful witch employed at LAMB and has no patience for Lorcan’s immature antics. About the only opinion they share is the stupidity of LAMB’s rules. Why let someone die when, with a wave of her hand, she could send them to a safer time or place, right? 

Rogue agents aren’t popular at LAMB, so when disturbing events occur that could change the course of human history, Lorcan and Fiona are forced into a partnership. Their assignment: gather a team of other gifted creatures from the past, uncover the mystery, stop the evil and save the current world.

To do that, they must first learn to trust each other. 

Saving the world might be easier. 

Enjoy an Excerpt →

Other Tule AuthorsYou'll Also Love:

More Tule TitlesYou Might Enjoy:

Start reading this book:

Chapter One

Lorcan Wright clutched a shelf in a muggy Louisianan cellar, trying to catch his breath. A cellar beneath an abandoned Victorian mansion in mostly below-sea-level New Orleans was unusual; a twenty-first-century guy in a mansion in actual Victorian times was even weirder. But this grisly scene—six truly dead vampires he’d just decapitated, and an undead one now stirring in his coffin—was like something from an Anne Rice novel, except these vamps were very real.

He tugged at his collar, then mopped his brow waiting for his heart to quit thundering. Were those jugs of moonshine on the dusty shelf? He was tempted to uncork one and take a long drink. He’d certainly earned it.

Lorcan had been tracking these monsters for a while but stumbled on their coven’s nest by accident, following the pungent odor of death. Although he didn’t often appreciate his keen sense of smell, occasionally—in his line of work—it helped.

When the fanged creature in the coffin opened his bloodshot eyes and smiled a sinister smile, Lorcan didn’t hesitate. He took the stake within his cloak, drove it into the vampire’s chest, and hammered it down with the mallet. He jumped back a safe distance, then watched the creature shrivel into a mummy-like state before turning to dust.

LAMB had ordered him to take the coven’s grand elder, an ancient named Xavier, in for questioning, but Lorcan wasn’t convinced this was Xavier. He hadn’t burst into flames, like some ancients did. Xavier allegedly had a hooked scar on his chin but Lorcan hadn’t taken time to assess the vamp’s complexion.

He wiped the bloodied stake on a rag, placed it and the mallet back in the tattered leather satchel he referred to as his toolkit, then draped it over his shoulder. He’d undoubtedly suffer another of Dalton’s lectures for not following orders. But he’d singlehandedly taken down so many nefarious beings, Dalton couldn’t do worse; he knew Lorcan was invaluable to LAMB.

He’d expected more of a fight. From the information LAMB intelligence collected, he knew Xavier was one of the deadliest ancient varieties. He’d apparently turned hundreds of humans into vampires and killed a lot more. Question him? Yeah, right. He’d never give them any information. Then what? After centuries of committing unimaginably gruesome acts, ask him to kindly stop killing humans?

Those who did the work of Locating and Assessing Magical Beings couldn’t afford any lamb-like gentleness.

The bigwigs at LAMB were fucking delusional. They sat in their fancy offices handing out orders and deciding which agents would be sent on each assignment but knew very little about actually searching for or dealing with magical beings or MBs as they were referred to. They’d clearly never dealt with an ancient vampire.

Henry Dalton, the CEO, was a lawyer. He was intelligent enough. Lorcan heard he’d even time-traveled on a few occasions, but he doubted Dalton ever broke a sweat or had gotten his hands dirty…or bloody.

Minerva, his vice-chief, was likely more experienced, but she was on a damn power trip. She’d disliked Lorcan from the moment they’d been introduced, which had thrown him a little. He was used to women liking him. But he’d begun to expect the unexpected. That was kind of his motto and on this, at least, he and LAMB agreed.

From a pocket in his black cloak—a passable Victorian-age replica that always made him feel like Jack the Ripper—he pulled his LAMB-approved mobile phone. Taking anything from the future to the past was risky, but agents were expected to produce evidence of the rectifications. He took a photo of the headless vamps and the dust in the coffin.

Lorcan certainly never imagined he’d end up working for LAMB. Although he had some abilities recognized as superpowers, a superhero he most definitely was not. But he could spot evil beings and other demons a mile away. Ironically, that earned him the unappreciated nickname of Demon Hunter.

He’d go back to his time, have a shower, a few drinks, maybe hook up with that hot blonde flight attendant who’d liked his British accent and his eyes.

Since everything had gone without a hitch here, he might even try to create a time portal himself while he was so hyped up. He’d prefer to avoid going back through LAMB’s time machine so he could wait to report in tomorrow.

Fiona Maguire stood outside a hut in medieval Russia—Rus, she reminded herself—and tried to still her erratic breathing. She blinked, but even with the light of the full moon, she understood why the Middle Ages were sometimes thought of as the Dark Ages.

It was chancy, a woman being here alone, after dark. But a chilling premonition about Baba Yaga had compelled her to deal with the beastly woman as quickly as possible. If she didn’t, the hideous old hag would soon extend her macabre fence of human bones.

From previous visions Fiona learned the woman—who looked like a hunchbacked, wrinkled old grandmother—was one of the most malevolent creatures she could’ve imagined. And that was saying something.

She’d just returned from a middle-of-the-night walk when the portentous images struck. She immediately opened a time portal, without going to LAMB headquarters to obtain era-appropriate clothes from their vast depository of antiquated garments. She glanced down at her jeans and lilac-colored raincoat. She knew that villagers with torches and pitchforks patrolled the woods during full moons, looking for otherworldly creatures. At least she hadn’t been wearing her short nightie, but her unusual clothes and unbound hair would raise questions if she was seen.

Should they suspect dark sorcery and attempt to harm her, she’d be forced to use her magic openly and…well…it wouldn’t be pretty. Nor would it be sanctioned by LAMB. Especially since they didn’t even know she was here. Then there was the essential consideration of how her actions would disrupt history.

Fiona silently inched along the wall of the small sod dwelling then pressed her ear against the shuttered window. She heard an eerie cackle followed by a child whimpering. She stiffened, always edgier when children were involved.

Thankfully, she had her katana. When whimpering turned to sobs and from more than one child, she knew she’d have to intervene…even without a calculated plan. Mindful of her previously injured shoulder, she backed up and ran at the door. When the thin wood gave way, the door burst open. She stumbled inside, grateful that her strong legs kept her upright.

The dim room, lit by only a small hearth fire, was like a terrifying scene from Hansel and Gretel. A cage made from thick ropes hung from the roof. Two small boys and a girl were inside. Below, tied to a chair, sat an older girl. They all gasped, their eyes big as saucers. There was no sign of Baba Yaga, but she couldn’t have gone far.

“Where is she?” Fiona whispered to the children.

They appeared uncertain. Of course, they didn’t understand English. Even her modern-day Russian was limited, let alone whatever dialect they spoke in Middle Ages Rus. She glanced at the large black pot bubbling over the fire. It looked like a witch’s cauldron. She didn’t want to consider how many children had been placed in that pot and refused to think of the horrific old creature as a witch. Too many tales depicted witches as wicked. As a witch herself, Fiona took great offense.

However, Baba Yaga was evil—a sadistic, fear-invoking cannibal who preyed on children.

Fiona had always been interested in the paranormal and had read a lot about mythical creatures and folklore of various countries. Since joining LAMB, she’d learned even more, but there were far too many to remember or recognize. While on assignments, she’d also discovered some that had never been seen or documented before.

She knew Baba Yaga was no mere Slavic legend.

The smallest boy began weeping again, and a girl, probably his older sister by their similar appearance, clasped his hand. Fiona wasn’t naïve enough to think she could stroll in and take these children without a fight. Even if she did, the hideous creature would simply entrance them, lure them back, or capture others. She had to find and kill her.

First, though, she’d get the kids out. Fiona cut through the ropes on the girl’s hands. The child rubbed her raw wrists, then stood and looked at the others, no doubt worried. The cage was hanging high enough that if Fiona sliced the bottom, the children would fall. The straw-covered dirt floor was better than stone, but if they hurt their legs, they couldn’t run. And they’d have to run.

She used the katana to make an opening in the cage’s side, big enough for the children to get out. She needed both arms to get them down and sheathing her weapon was risky, so she passed it to the girl, who opened her mouth to protest, but took the weapon.

Fiona had just lifted the last child when a hatch in the floor previously hidden by straw was thrown open. The kerchiefed old woman flew in on a broom.

Really, a broom? Another item associated with witches.

Two children screamed; the others looked literally scared stiff. Fiona grabbed the katana from the girl and pointed to the door. Baba Yaga laughed disturbingly and flew at the children.

Fiona raised her hand, using her own magic to try to tip the woman off the broom, twirling her around as if they were playing a bizarre game of quidditch from the Harry Potter novels. It kept the hideous woman distracted long enough for the kids to rush out the door.

The hag settled the broom and waved her fist at Fiona, spittle covering her whiskered chin as she spewed words Fiona didn’t understand. She hoped it wasn’t a curse. She didn’t think the supernatural hag was capable of issuing curses.

When she saw Baba Yaga poised to fly after the children, Fiona used a ninja move she’d learned from Haru. She twirled, dove, rolled, and with a powerful leg thrust, broke the broom. Baba Yaga fell to the floor, then scrambled up with unnatural agility, especially given her stooped, aged appearance.

Glancing down at her ruined method of flight, she snarled. Dirty, jagged fingernails instantly grew. My God, they were as long as Fiona’s weapon. The woman opened her mouth in a demented smile, revealing absurdly sharp teeth like a hungry wolf from Grimms’ Fairy Tales. Shite. This was going to be a long night.

Lorcan brushed cobwebs away and was starting up the creaky cellar stairs when he heard a sound. He turned quickly. Fuck! Two more vampires heading straight for him and another lurking behind. The gray complexion of the third suggested he was an ancient. Maybe he was the grand elder.

How could Lorcan have missed them? Maybe there was a tunnel. Dammit, he’d known it had gone too smoothly.

He unsheathed the heavy, solid silver broadsword and beheaded the first vampire. But the burly second vamp knocked Lorcan to the earthen floor, sending his toolkit skidding. They wrestled awhile—the vampire trying to bite his neck. Lorcan held him away, bloody thankful for his demon super strength because vampires were unusually strong, too.

He finally threw him off with such a force the vamp struck the wall and was impaled by a wooden coat hook. His head dropped forward; black blood stained his chest. Not how Lorcan planned it, but he’d take luck whenever he could.

He leapt to his feet, looking around for the ancient. Maybe he’d shifted into a bat, but he couldn’t have flown outside—the sun was rising. Lorcan tore off the ragged cloth covering the window, allowing sunlight to cascade through the dirty glass. Xavier, or whoever this vamp was, would need to get to his coffin or he’d be vulnerable.

Lorcan had just slammed the lid down on the last casket when claws ripped down his hip and he was yanked to the floor again.

He’d been taken off guard but managed to jump to his feet. Even a silver sword didn’t always kill an ancient. His toolkit, with the sharpened stake carved from a cross once carried by a Templar knight and soaked in holy water from a sacred well, was at the opposite end of the cellar. The ancient smiled unnervingly, then rushed at him with unnatural speed.

Lorcan raised his hands and used his powers to throw the MB against the cellar window. When sunlight touched his mottled skin, he hissed and his face started smoldering. He fell to the floor, baring yellowed teeth. His foul breath reeked of decay.

Lorcan sprang upward like someone from The Matrix, pulled the dead vampire from the wooden coatrack, and tore if off the wall. The hooks dripped with disgusting-smelling black blood. Then Lorcan looked directly into the grand elder’s eyes. That was risky. Vampires could hypnotize people, but so could demons and Lorcan had the ability to mentally control almost all beings.

Unable to move, the vamp’s eyes filled with resolve before Lorcan slammed the coatrack against his chest, impaling him with several wooden hooks.

He jumped back when this one burst into flames.

No time to take a photo or look for a scar.

Unearthly screams made Lorcan cover his ears as the blazing vampire fell against a stack of wooden crates that caught fire. He certainly wouldn’t attempt to create a time portal under these conditions. Instead, he grabbed his toolkit and a jug of moonshine and hightailed it up the stairs before they were encased in flames, then raced out the side door.

When he finally dared to look back the whole house was ablaze. He’d have to go back home through LAMB’s time gateway, but he wouldn’t check in or fill out reports till tomorrow.

Back in twenty-first-century Boston, Fiona located her spare key. With the adrenaline rush over, her knees were knocking and her hands shaking too badly to unlock her apartment door. She used magic instead. It was still dark; no one would see.

She was usually cautious not to employ her powers where anyone might witness them, especially in this century where everyone had a cell phone with a damn camera. Being caught using supernatural abilities would be difficult to explain and cause attention neither LAMB nor Fiona wanted.

Once inside, she locked the door and placed the katana’s scabbard against the wall. She’d wash off the blood later. She glanced down at her clothes. Might as well throw them in the bin. Dammit, she liked that coat. She knew from experience those stains wouldn’t come out. Beheadings caused an unbelievable amount of blood.

After washing her hands at the kitchen sink, she reached for a paper towel and saw her reflection in the kettle. Her face and hair were blood-splattered. She sighed. Occasionally she wished she was the grandmother who went to book club or stayed home knitting, baking cookies, and finding recipes on Pinterest.

She filled the kettle and placed it on the stove. A cup of tea was definitely in order. While wiping her face, she heard ringing coming from the bedroom. She considered ignoring it. She just wanted to curl up under the covers and sleep. She groaned and went to get her cell from the nightstand.

Henry Dalton was calling. This was early even for him. LAMB must have a pressing assignment. She barely felt up to showering, much less facing another dangerous otherworldly creature.

Danny Glover’s statement from a Lethal Weapon movie popped into her head and she agreed: She was too old for this shit!

She pushed the accept button, resignedly. “Hello, Henry.”

“Ms. Maguire, it’s Henry Dalton.”

Yeah, she knew that. She’d just said his name.

“You’re to report in as soon as possible. There’s something we must discuss.”

That sounded ominous but apparently it wasn’t an assignment.

“I’ll be at least an hour.”

There was a grumble and a click. Whether he didn’t want calls traced or he was simply old-school, Henry still used a landline.

He was never overly cheerful but was rarely rude and he’d certainly never hung up on her before. She needed a cup of tea and a soak in the bath before she went to find out what he wanted.

Lorcan limped inside his brownstone home in Boston’s Beacon Hill and headed straight for a bottle of scotch. He poured half a glass and downed it, reveling in how it burned his throat. He exhaled, finally able to breathe.

He’d used mind control on the guards at LAMB’s facility. They wouldn’t remember seeing him return to the twenty-first century. Anything to avoid bloody paperwork and lengthy checkups.

Leaning against his handcrafted oak, always well-stocked bar, he winced. Christ! Those fucking scratches stung! He pulled up his cloak, glanced back at his shredded pants—saw blood and deep wounds on his arse. He’d need to use an antiseptic. Likely apply antibiotic cream, too.

He wouldn’t report the injury to LAMB; they’d insist he be seen by Kumar, their top doctor. Lorcan would have to fill out a detailed incident report. They’d observe him, run tests to see if his abilities or temperament had changed. He mightn’t get another assignment for a week. Fuck that.

Then they’d send him to a therapist to determine if he showed signs of PTSD. As if he’d admit that to anyone. It didn’t affect his performance, only his ability to sleep and lead a normal life. He doubted any LAMB agents slept well or had normal lives. Knowing dangerous, unnatural beings lived in plain sight and that even more were hiding in the shadows had a way of interfering with normalcy.

Lorcan glanced down; he hadn’t washed his hands or removed his soiled clothes. He’d needed this drink, badly. And now a long, hot shower. Vampire blood had a rank odor.

He heard his phone buzz. After savoring another glass of the strong liquor, he checked who’d been calling. Dalton. Twelve calls and seven messages. Lorcan listened to only one. He was to report to Dalton’s office right away. He didn’t bother replying but went to the shower.

End of Excerpt

Dark Irish Demon is available in the following formats:

ISBN: 978-1-961544-83-3

February 29, 2024

→ As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. We also may use affiliate links elsewhere in our site.