Part of the start of Chapter 32:
Lady Aveta walked into the ancient chapel, her steps light as she approached the front. The smell of blood and powerful magic hung in the air as she bypassed the stone alter. She stopped short at the sight of Devon Brady sitting in a puddle blood, cradling the body of his true mate in his arms. He was lost in his grief, calling out to her to come back, to not leave him here without her. As for Taylor, she seemed serene, like she was taking a nap in the arms of her lover.
“Devon.” She quietly called out to him. “Devon, she isn’t gone.” There was no acknowledgment from the man on the floor. Aveta moved nearer and touched his shoulder. “You need to get a grip of yourself if you want her back!” Her voice was hard, the force in it breaking through to Devon.
“How?” he croaked. It didn’t surprise him that venerable lady and Goddess of the Fae was standing next to him. In one form or the other she had always been a part of Taylor’s life. His eyes never left Taylor’s body as it lay in his arms. “How, damn you!” He demanded harshly.
“She is your one true mate,” Her voice had softened. “You must follow your mate bond link to bring her back.” He looked up at her and a soft gasped escaped her at the anguish she saw in his face. “She isn’t dead, Devon.” She repeated. “But you must act fast or you will lose her forever.”
“She’s not breathing.” He looked down at Taylor’s pale face and his hand went to her neck, seeking a pulse there. “She’s… gone. I… I… failed her!” His words were a broken whisper. “I’m sorry, my love, sorry for not protecting you better…for…” He bent his head, his lips touching Taylor’s. The room seemed to lighten and heat up around them.
“Enough!” The voice that spit the word out did not belong to the Lady Aveta. No, the matronly fae Aveta had become the Goddess Aveta. She stood tall over the couple on the floor. Her thick, long red hair streamed past her bare shoulders. Her alabaster skin, covered by a rich green robe, made her seem even paler then Taylor.
Devon stilled, captured by her gaze. Her brow was farrowed as she looked down on him.
“If you will not listen to me,” she said, the power behind her words sinking into Devon’s grief stricken mind. “She will be lost to the ether for eternity.” She reached out one slender arm and offered him her hand. “Take my hand, Devon Brady, son of the Fae, true life mate to Taylor Conner.”
Devon felt compelled take the hand she offered. As he did a bolt of magic raced from the Goddess and into him. The slight burn from their contact raced up his arm before spreading and making every tiny hair on his body standup. He felt… renewed, his magic alive and stronger than before within him. Aveta smiled.
“Find the mate bond linking you to her,” she tilted her head to Taylor’s body, still in resting in Devon’s lap. “When you find it, follow it to where Taylor waits in the ether.”
“How…” Devon’s voice was still ragged.
“Look within yourself, Devon.” She released his hand and took a step back. “Look in your heart.”
Devon watched her for a second before looking down at Taylor again. He stroked her cool cheek and closed his eyes as a single thread of magic flowed from his fingers into Taylor. His brow wrinkled with concentration as he tried to connect to her heart and mind. He found nothing, no trace of life from her.
“Deeper,” a voice whispered in his mind, “What you seek is deeper within her.”
He pushed harder, almost becoming one with her. Still he found nothing… Wait, there was something there! He reached for the slight pink spark he saw deep within her heart. His mind touched it and it thinned out, like a thread that he could follow. His breathing slowed as he did just that. Wherever it leads too, there he would fine Taylor.
“I will stand over you, protecting you both.” The words sound faint and sound as if coming from far way.