Excerpt from “The Occultus

By Author Ray Morgan

Genre: Fantasy

What was a soul worth? It varied from person to person. I could have offered her relief from the guilt and sadness eating away at her, if there was any that was. If there wasn’t, well, I could have offered her a hotdog and she would have sold me her soul without a second’s hesitation. That was the beauty of those who didn’t truly respect their souls—they’d sell it for a shiny penny and not regret the decision once.

            The sound of footsteps broke through my musings and I stilled, listening closely. At first, I expected the gruff voice of a security guard telling me I wasn’t allowed on the roof, then I noticed the sound of heels against concrete. Not exactly the usual dress code for security guards, none I had come across before anyway. It could have been a brave and innocent worker from downstairs, but the steps were too confident and purposeful. No, there was only one person I knew who had a walk like that.

            “Hello, Nathaniel.”


            I didn’t turn to face her straight away, closing my eyes instead and cursing my bad luck. Maybe if I didn’t turn around, she would disappear. Not that such a trick had ever worked in the past. I should have known she would show up. She always did. My very own stalker. Somehow, she always seemed to know where I was, and for some reason, it always caught me by surprise.

            “Hello, Serena,” I answered.

            With a heavy sigh, I gave in and looked her way as she came to join me at my spot at the very edge. No point delaying the inevitable, not that I wouldn’t normally give it a bloody good effort. My gaze roamed over her, taking her in. She hadn’t changed at all since I had last seen her; from the knowing smile to the glimmer of teasing in her eyes. She was an angel. Literally. Well, an angel on probation, but it all came down to the same thing—fluffy, white wings, and a giant, glowing halo. Though neither were visible.

            I let go of a snort. It sounded like the start to a bad joke; an angel and demon walk onto a rooftop overlooking the world below.

            The problem with Serena though, was that she didn’t look all that much like an angel. At least not the ones you saw on the front of your typical greeting card or swinging around at the back of a school nativity play on a rope that always seemed like it was about ready to snap.

            Sure, she was perfection, right from the raven black hair to her amber eyes that practically glowed in the darkness. But angels wore outfits suitable for church, like dainty frocks and Sunday dresses, with a hand-knitted cardigan covering the goods. She wore jeans that hugged her legs, accentuating her frame, the heels of her boots upping her height by a few good inches, and her top… well, who would have believed an angel didn’t mind showing some cleavage? Maybe that was why she was on probation.

            Everything about her drew you in, even her voice. She was salvation dressed as sin, with a heart of pure gold. On the flip side, my heart was a cheap knockoff I’d bought from a magus once upon a time in the far away, distant land of a London black market. And when I say bought, I mean acquired without permission whilst said magus was busy attending to a fire that had mysteriously broken out at the other end of his stall. Go figure?

            Her head tilted to the side slightly as she considered me. “You shouldn’t be here, Nathaniel. Her soul is not up for sale.”

            “No one’s ever is.” I grinned at her.

            “I thought you’d quit,” Serena continued. “No more collecting souls.”

            I shrugged. “I’m a demon.”

            I consider myself to be a freelancer—which basically means I can’t hold down the full-time soul-salesman job. So I do favours instead. Just every so often, whenever I need something in return because hey, why bother doing a favour if you can’t get anything out of it?

This marks the end of this excerpt. To continue reading you can get this book using the link below. 

Ray Morgan

About The Author

Born in County Durham, England, Ray Morgan studied psychology before deciding to use what she had learned to tormentfi ctional characters. Obsessed with the supernatural, she spends far too much time engrossed in ghost stories andobsessing about old time lore.

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