Stone Guardian by Paulina Woods
Element - Fire (Healer/Destroyer)
Royal House - Purple
Milcah was born to rule. Stolen soon after birth, her magic was locked and she was forced to live a normal life, with no knowledge of her heritage.
Raised by a detached parent, she learned to depend on herself and her best friend, Mary, for support. While on a road trip across country she's forced to find shelter in an abandoned town called Beacon.
She finds her destiny and learns about her past which will lead to the salvation or damnation of the world, and a mate who can give her everything her heart desires. Can she let go of her insecurities and accept her mate's love?
About the Author:Twitter
Follow Paulina @
Follow Paulina @
Amazon Author Page
Life is what you make it and nothing more. This is something I had to come to terms with as I struggled to find my place in this world.
I was born with a learning disability and no one could understand me but my older brother until I was almost eight years old. I was told my multiple teachers and school councilors that I was not going to graduate high school unless I went into a special program. In 2001 I proved them all wrong by graduating with a 3.5 and being accepted into Cal State University, Pomona.
Following the bad advice of my councilor I majored in animal science and after two years I had to drop out. For a while I wondered aimlessly and became homeless before I decided to give school one more try. Enrolling at Fullerton College I picked journalism to major in, why not I loved to read and write. In 2008 I graduated from California State University, Fullerton with my B.A. in Communication with an emphasis on journalism.
Of course life happens and I had to take a year off of everything to take care of my mom and younger brother. I thought I would never recover and would forever play catch up but then my older brother sat me down and told me that I needed to pursue my own dreams. So I started a blog and started posting reviews. It was fun but I was still missing something.
When author Valerie Twombly suggested I try my hand at writing I was skeptical that anyone would want to read stories from my head. I love fantasy and I fall in love with the most unique heroes. So between reading, working and taking care of my younger brother, I wrote my first novel and in 2014 I hit publish.
So I would like to tell those who have been told that they will never amount to anything that there is hope. You are only held down by your own limitations. Reach for what you want and fight to hold on to it.
“Damn it. How can I get lost with MapQuest? Stupid directions.” Milcah banged her fist against the steering wheel. Two weeks ago driving across the country had seemed like a great plan, but now, not so much. “If I had known driving was going to be more stressful than work I would have flown.” She laughed at the silly thought of flying anywhere when she’d had to borrow money from Mary just to pay for gas, food and hotel expenses. After leaving Tucson, Arizona, she had gotten lost on all the small highways and the godforsaken two lane highway she was driving on now was devoid of any traffic in either direction. Her phone refused to get any type of signal and a nasty looking storm was coming up fast in her rearview mirror.
“Fuck me. I should have stayed home.” Thank the goddess she had filled up at the last gas station, at least she wasn’t going to run out of gas. With her MapQuest not working and her phone giving her crap, she was in serious need of a place to stop and rest. A thunderstorm, her old beat up Honda, and the threat of a flashflood was not a great combination.
Driving slowly, but not too slowly, Milcah searched for a place to stop. Twenty minutes later she spotted a sign reading Beacon: A home to be proud of. From this distance she could barely make out the buildings, but even a small town had to have hot food, hot water, and a nice warm bed. Ignoring her misgivings, she turned right onto a small, barely paved road.
“Ouch!” Her left tire dipped as it slipped into a pothole, snapping her teeth together. Milcah hoped the older car would hold up because she couldn’t afford expensive repairs.
Like a horror movie, the road started to look overgrown and all but disappeared in some places. The last time this road was paved was probably when pavement was first introduced. But with storm clouds closing in, there was no way she was turning around. In desperation she reached across to the passenger seat and picked up her phone, maybe she could get better reception closer to town. No such luck. As she passed under a sign reading ‘Welcome to Beacon’ she tossed her phone back onto the passenger seat.
“Beacon of what?” The empty streets sent a chill down her spine. “This town should be named Forsaken.”
There was no other way to describe the sad, abandoned town. It had overgrown grass on the side of the road, buildings with blank, empty windows and the only sounds were the half-broken shutters blowing in the wind. The town looked like it had been built in the early gold rush years and then abandoned soon after. A feeling of dread, reminding her of her dream two weeks ago, slithered down her spine as she drove down the main street.
“What have I gotten myself into? I don’t think phones were invented when this place was a booming town. There’s no way I am sticking around. I can make it to the next town.” And now she was talking to herself.
Making a U-turn, Milcah slammed on her brakes to avoid hitting…what the hell was that? A second ago the road had been clear as a summer’s day and now some thing stood dead center. Scared, but curious, Milcah studied the object. With wings reaching from the ground to above its head, whatever it was stood taller than the overhangs on some of the buildings. A little transparent, it reminded her of a ghost, but a ghost of what?
This is not a dream. I will not investigate. Milcah pressed the gas pedal, swerved around the creature, and headed for the road out of town. Gripping the steering wheel, she tried to stop her hands from shaking. What the hell was that?
Without looking, she reached for her phone, hoping it would work, and she could call Mary and bitch about her directions and the possibility of hallucinations until she calmed down. Instead her hand passed through something warm. Quickly glancing over, Milcah screamed as she stared into the eyes of the creature from the road, now calmly sitting in her car, somehow fitting its large frame inside. Hitting her brakes to avoid running into anything and slamming her car into park, Milcah turned in her seat to stare at it.
This close, she was able to make out more features, a heavy brow covering deep-seated eyes, a semi-flat nose resting over plump lips. Curiosity overshadowed fear and Milcah reached out and poked her hand through the creature, again feeling the warmth and a slight tingle. Reaching for her amulet in a nervous gesture, Milcah tried to remember what she had read about ghosts and the proper thing to do when you ran into one. She didn’t have any holy water, but it didn’t look like the specter was trying to suck out her soul or kill her.
“I think I have read way too many supernatural novels and need to get my head checked.” Her voice sounded unnaturally loud to her ears. Milcah looked out the window, making sure she wasn’t hanging upside down after crashing her car. A car crash would go a long way toward explaining what was happening. She turned her attention back to what was sitting in her passenger’s seat. It seemed to be studying her just as much as she was studying it. In the back of her mind she knew she should be out of the car and screaming, but she had never been normal.
It seemed fascinated by the amulet Milcah was playing with and reached out as if to touch it. Moving the amulet out of reach, Milcah tried to figure out what she was going to do. Looking at her amulet again, Milcah longed to be able to ask her mother to explain what was happening. Milcah glanced at her phone again, which was still under the creature, hoping to see it had reception. Not able to tell but not wanting to reach over and get it she decided to leave it alone. Huffing, she looked back at the creature to see he was following the movement of her thumb as she rubbed the amulet.
“What would Mary do?” At this moment, Milcah envied Mary’s ability to believe in the supernatural outside of books. Milcah believed in the goddess and that to honor her, humans need to take care of the world they had been given. She lit candles during the full moon and read her own tarot cards. She’d even gone to see a few mystics with her mother. Yet nothing prepared her for what she was facing in this small deserted town. She’d always believed people moved onto the next cycle after death and supernatural beings like vampires, werewolves, and gargoyles were fantasies made up by humans to explain evils in the world.
She rubbed at her temple where a pounding headache was starting to stir, usually a sign a nightmare would follow. Last year she had decided to see why she was having these headaches and nightmares. A psychologist told her she was suppressing memories from childhood. He believed Milcah had been abused as a child and the dreams were her mind’s way of dealing with the trauma. Milcah never told anyone about the visit and never went back. Her mother had not abused her. Sitting in her car staring at a ghost of some type, Milcah made a mental note to call the doctor as soon as she returned home.
Help us. The sound of a deep male voice overlaid with many others rang in her head. She jumped at the sound. Shaking her head, she tried to ignore the voices echoing around her. Help us.
“I’m going insane.” Milcah grimaced. “I need to get to the next town.”
As soon as the words left her mouth, thunder rolled across the sky, quickly followed by a flash of lightening. “Dang it.” The GPS was useless, but Mary had been thoughtful and placed a paper map in the middle console. After looking at the confusing lines on the map for a few minutes, Milcah gave up and tossed it into the backseat. Crossing her arms, she sat back and tried to think of another plan. There was no way she was driving anywhere in the storm fast approaching with a creature as her passenger.
Help us. There it was again. Glancing over at the creature in her passenger seat, she wondered if he was pushing his voice into her head. Before she could ask him the voice echoed again. Help us. With that last plea, something unlocked in Milcah’s mind. She lost focus in the real world.
1. What inspired you to become an author? Or was it something you always wanted to do?
I have always loved talking and telling stories. When I was younger I would make my older brother act out most of the things going on in my head. Lets just say there were a lot of destroyed toys. It wasn't until I was around eight, about the time my father left, that I started really writing. First it was poems and short stories before graduating to plays.
2. Which of your characters do you connect the most with?
I love Milcah because she has a little of me in her. I grew up the plus size outcast in the too big clothes who was involved in a cult like church. When I went to college it was like her leaving her small town. The world opened up and I loved what I saw, too back I didn’t met the man of my dreams until ten years later.
3. Are you currently working on something new?
I am always working on something new. Recently I have had a fantasy demon story beating at my brain and finally had a few moments to get it started on paper. My mom demanded I write her a clean historical romance with no supernatural beings. Oh did I mention I am also working on a couple of shorts, each will be about 20k and link together by an object.
I sometimes wish I could find a sugar daddy and live happily ever after writing in a comfortable house in my jammies.
4. If you could give advice to any new author, what would it be?
Write and dream small. I started out at the same time as a fellow author and she was always telling me how she couldn’t wait to hit it big and how people were going to love her books. I went in knowing I wasn’t going to hit it rich but I would touch a few lives. I am still writing while she has wasted by the wayside.
I am not saying your dreams of hitting it big wont happen but it's rare that they happen so quickly and with your first book.
5. What is your favorite part of being an author?
The look on people faces when I tell them that I'm published. I work as a server at a well known casino in my area. I think people look at me and see a woman working a dead end job trying to make ends meet. I have my B.A in communications, a book published and I had a successful blog that I turned into my author page. Yes the look on their faces makes my day so much better.
6. What do you do to overcome writer's block?
I stop writing. I find that many times I don't have a block but a tired brain. Taking a step back and just doing something else usually revives it enough for me to start again.
7. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you choose?
Simple, the Grand Canyon. I have lived six hours from it my entire life but have never been and next summer my best friend and I are going to change that. We are going on a road trip that will take up by the Canyon and to Vegas. I seriously can't wait.
8. What is your most memorable moment?
When I was three years old my brother and I did something so stupid that to this day we try not to bring it up. My mom collected china dolls, expensive dolls that my father sent her from around the world while he was in the military. One day she was taking a nap and we decided they needed makeup, with permanent marker.
I may have been young but I can remember the look on my moms face. She was only 25 and her two kids were driving her up the wall. I want to make enough money one day to buy her the dolls again.
9. Where would you like to see yourself in five years?
Oh ask me, ask me. I have a two, three and five year plan. In two years I want to be making enough money to pay for my book things with the money I make on sales. In three years I want to have enough money saved up to buy a nice three bedroom house and drop down to part time at my job. In five years I want to have the income to stop working and just write. See I have a plan but as everyone knows fate will have her hand in the pot.
10. Do you have a favorite author?
Nope. I have like ten but Sherrilyn Kenyon Dark Hunter Series and Christine Feehan Dark Series to name two popular authors. I have two bookcases bursting with books from my favorite authors and if I had the time I would name them all but then this would turn into a LONG post.