As an author of Celtic/Paranormal/Romance novels, my favorite holiday is Samhain, the Celtic festival which gives us our Halloween traditions. Samhain, pronounced SOW-uhn, is the Celtic New Year, October 31st or November 1st. Samhain falls between the old year and the new, it is a day without time. Spirits of the dead and supernatural beings easily cross into our earthy dimension on this day, since the veil between worlds is at its thinnest.
Since I love Samhain, I wrote a shapeshifter romance set during Samhain in pre-roman times, The Wolf and the Druidess.
A Celtic Tryst With A ShapeShifter Twist
In days of old, deep in the dark woods, Druidess Seren discovers a wolf shapeshifting into the bare, muscular Celtic God, Gwydion. Seren's mind turns from the Samhain feast to wicked thoughts of Gwydion's gorgeous body Is the love Gwydion and Seren share strong enough to overcome barriers between an immortal god and a mortal woman? Or will a warning of danger from beyond the grave destroy the sensual magic brewing between the wolf and the druidess?
Here is an excerpt:
Her mother had been so proud and told everyone, "See how wise my daughter is, so blessed by the gods, the druids took her to foster." Few were chosen, training took many years, and a druid’s ranking in the tribe placed as high as the chief’s. Seren was surprised how much older she was now, five and twenty years, still she had a need for her mother. The loss was deep. It left a hole in her. Warmth and joy would return to her heart tonight when she celebrated her favorite feast day, Samhain, the New Year, with her departed mam.
Just moments ago she heard the call of an owl, the chirp of a bird, and the whistling wind, but the forest had suddenly grown so quiet she could hear the crackle of dried leaves and the rustle of her elbow brushing across a bush.
As she walked, she glimpsed a creature passing like a black shadow between the spooky trees. It crept in stealth like part of the darkness itself. A shiver shot through her. But the mysterious being didn’t make a sound and seemed uninterested in her. Seren held the torch out as she turned around, searching for anything there. She saw nothing.
Seren kept to the narrow path as she walked deeper into the forest. She’d sensed something. Mayhap a spirit, they came to earth tonight, but she knew it wasn’t her mother's ghost, she’d recognize her.
There was no turning back. Whatever it was, she would make peace with it. Seren had to bring the Samhain meal to her mother and honor her, yet she couldn’t shake the odd feeling someone watched her.
Holding the torch high, she chanted. “The torch is burning, the year is turning, by this light, I greet the spirits of Samhain night.” Seren called out, “Who is there? Be you sprit or man?”
No one answered and she picked up her pace down the dirt path through the thick forest, so dense with trees. They crowded in on her, like a trap. Brandishing the burning torch like a bright weapon, she hurried on shaky legs toward the cairn. She gasped, nearly tripping over a large fallen branch, but caught her footing.