The second novel in the new teen series, The Chronicles of Nick, a spin-off from the blockbuster Dark-Hunter series--from #1 New York Times bestselling author Sherrilyn Kenyon
Nick Gautier's day just keeps getting better and better.
Yeah, he survived the zombie attacks, only to wake up and find himself enslaved to a world of shapeshifters and demons out to claim his soul.
Being a teenager is no picnic either. His new principal thinks he's even more of a hoodlum than the last one, his coach is trying to recruit him to things he can't even mention, and the girl he's not seeing, but is, has secrets that terrify him.
But more than that, he's being groomed by the darkest of powers, and if he doesn't learn how to raise the dead by the end of the week, he will become one of them...
About the Author
In the past two years, New York Times bestselling author Sherrilyn Kenyon has claimed the #1 spot twelve times. This extraordinary bestseller continues to top every genre she writes. With more than 23 million copies of her books in print in over 30 countries, her current series include: The Dark-Hunters, The League, Lords of Avalon, BAD Agency, Chronicles of Nick and the forthcoming Nevermore.
Read an Excerpt
Chronicles of Nick
By Sherrilyn Kenyon
St. Martin's PressCopyright © 2011 Sherrilyn Kenyon
All rights reserved.
They say when you're about to die, you see your entire life flash before your eyes.
The only thing Nick Gautier could see flashing was Kyrian Hunter's vampire fangs. That horrifying sight froze him in place on the elegant mahogany staircase at the front of Kyrian's sprawling antebellum mansion.
I'm going to die....
Yeah, since he'd attempted to go to school about twenty-two hours ago and found out his principal had been eaten by a zombie, everything and its brother had been after him.
Now his friggin' boss was a vampire.
It figured. So much for his paycheck—unless the devil could cash it, Nick would never see a nickel of it.
Would this day ever end?
Dude, right now, you're the one who's about to end. That thought finally shattered the terrified fog in his head, which had held him immobile.
Run, dude, run!
He couldn't go downstairs, 'cause that was where Kyrian stood. The only place to run was upstairs, after his mother—who'd already gone into the bedroom Kyrian had loaned them for the night. She was completely oblivious to the fact that they were in mortal danger and that their blood was about to be drained. He spun around to warn her.
Wait, my gluteus maximus. Vampire was shy a few quarts of blood if he thought Nick had any intention of not going Casper on him.
I'm too young, too smart, and too good-looking to die. Yeah, and then some. The world needed him to improve the gene pool. Not to mention, at fourteen he hadn't even had his first date yet. He'd only just, this night, had his first kiss. He should have recognized that alone as a sign that the apocalypse was coming and that his death was imminent.
As Nick neared the top of the stairs, Kyrian jumped straight up from the floor twenty feet below and flipped over the shiny railing to land gracefully in front of him and cut off his escape. Kyrian's black eyes flashed in the shadows. Dressed all in black and at over six feet in height, Kyrian made a deadly, impressive sight, even with his boyish blond curls.
There was no way to get past him.
Nick skidded to a halt. What should he do now? His mom was in a bedroom a few feet behind Kyrian. He'd yell for her, but the last thing he wanted was for Kyrian to kill her, too. Maybe if he kept quiet, Kyrian would only drain him.
"It's not what you think, Nick."
Yeah, right. "I think you're a bloodsucking demon vampire who's going to kill me—that's what I think."
Before he could so much as blink, Kyrian reached out and grabbed Nick's neck with some kind of Vulcan death grip. He wanted to fight, but he was as helpless as a pup being held by the scruff. With the inhuman strength you'd expect from the undead, Kyrian hauled Nick past his mother's temporary bedroom and into Kyrian's upstairs office.
As in the rest of the house, the floor-to-ceiling curtains were drawn shut to protect against the dawning sun—something that should have clued Nick in that Kyrian was a ghoul from the first moment he stepped into the mansion. The dark wood of the desk blended in seamlessly with the dark green walls. Without breaking stride, Kyrian flung Nick into a dark burgundy leather chair.
When he started to run, Kyrian slammed him back into it. "Stop a minute and listen. I know I'm asking the impossible from you, but for once in your life, shut your mouth and open your ears."
"I'm not the one talking."
Kyrian snarled at him. "Don't get smart with me."
"You want me stupid?"
Nick held his hands up. "Fine, just don't eat my mom, okay? She's had a bad enough life without becoming the Bride of Dracula."
"I don't drink blood."
He arched a brow at that. "Yeah, right."
"Yeah, right. I don't. I'm not a vampire."
This from the one with the long freaky canines? "Then what's with your peculiar dental problem, huh? And don't even try to tell me they're fake, Mr. Armani suits and fancy car, 'cause you ain't the type to have false ones, and all that also says you have the money to fix them if you wanted to. Not to mention the fact you don't go out in daylight, and how did you ninja-flip up the stairs just now if you're not one of the undead?"
"And I'm gone." Nick tried to escape, and again, Kyrian body-slammed him into the chair hard enough to get his attention.
"You know about Acheron, and you accepted him. Why don't you trust me?"
Acheron Parthenopaeus was a giant immortal ... something. But even so, he'd been nothing other than nice to Nick and his mom. And most important ... "He don't got no fangs."
"Yes, he does. He's just better at hiding his than I am mine. He's also my boss."
Nick would argue he was full of cow manure, but that explanation actually made sense in a weird way. Ash was more than eleven thousand years old and had seemed a peculiar friend for Kyrian to have. But if the immortal giant was Kyrian's boss ...
That explained it.
Still, Nick wasn't a fool, and he accepted nothing at face value. For all he knew, Kyrian was lying his fangs off. "What line of work are you in?"
"Like saving punk kids getting beat to death by people who're supposed to be their friends?" I.e. me getting shot by Alan and stomped into the ground by Tyree and Mike a couple of weeks ago. That had been how the two of them had met and what had led to his working part-time for Kyrian after school.
Kyrian inclined his head to him. "Exactly."
Nick relaxed a degree as he reminded himself how much he owed Kyrian. But for Kyrian, he'd be dead right now. "So you're not going to attack my mother or suck my blood?"
"Good gods, no. I don't need the indigestion. You've caused me enough of a headache for one night. I don't need any more."
Nick sat in Kyrian's chair, staring up at him. If Kyrian wanted to kill him, he'd had plenty of opportunities. Instead, he'd protected both Nick and his mother and allowed them to spend the night in his mansion.
"If you want to know the correct term for me, I'm a Dark-Hunter."
Nick digested that word slowly. "Which means what? You hunt darkness?"
"Yes, Nick. That's exactly what I do. There's just not enough of it." Now, there was some sarcasm you could cut with a knife.
Nick wasn't amused by it. "So you going to explain it or not?"
"We're immortal warriors who sold our souls to the goddess Artemis. For her, we fight and protect humanity from whatever stalks the night, trying to prey on them. For the most part, that means we track and slay Daimons."
"To put it in terms you can relate to, they're vampires who live on human souls. Instead of blood, they take your soul into their body, and once it's there, it starts to wither and die. We have to kill the Daimon before the soul is completely used up."
"I don't understand. Why take souls?"
Kyrian shrugged. "It's what nourishes them. They have to keep a living soul in them or they die."
That was harsh. For them and especially for the person they killed to get it.
"How do they take souls?" Nick asked.
"No idea. I asked Acheron that question once, and he refused to answer. He's good at that."
"So did he teach that to you, too?"
Kyrian smiled, not the tight-lipped smiles of the past, this was a full-blown one that showed off his fangs. "He did, indeed."
"I give you an A-plus, then."
Kyrian cocked his head, watching him as if waiting for Nick to run again. "Are we good?"
Nick considered it. He probably should be terrified and bolting for the door, but Kyrian had been there with him, fighting zombies and protecting his friends tonight. He'd opened his house to Nick's mom.
He seemed okay....
You can trust him. For the first time, Nick knew who that weird deep voice in his head belonged to.
Ambrose—his whacked-out uncle who swore he was here to help him. Strange, how everyone kept claiming that. But—
They both jumped at the sound of Nick's mom in the hallway, calling his name.
Kyrian went to the door and opened it. "We're in here, Mrs. Gautier."
Stepping into the room, she looked around suspiciously, as if she expected to catch them doing something illegal, unethical, or unnatural. Tiny, petite, and beautiful with bright blue eyes, his mom had always reminded him of an angel, especially when she wasn't wearing makeup—something he hated on her. Her blond hair was rumpled and she was dressed in a black T-shirt that went all the way to her knees. It looked like Kyrian had loaned it to her to sleep in. At twenty-eight, she was really young to have a kid his age. But that had never mattered. It'd always been the two of them against a hostile world.
"Nick? Is everything okay?"
"It's all good, Mom."
She gave Kyrian an arch stare that said she didn't believe Nick's answer. "You sure, boo?"
"Absolutely. Mr. Hunter was just telling me that I have tomorrow off since I worked so late tonight. Isn't that right, Mr. Hunter?"
There was an amused gleam in Kyrian's eyes as he realized Nick had manipulated the situation to his advantage. "Yes, that's correct."
"Couldn't you have told him that outside?"
Kyrian pressed his lips together in an effort not to smile and expose his teeth. "Nick came in here to get online and play. I was just telling him he needed to go on to bed."
Oh, the rat ...
Pulling the parental censorship card? That was just rude. Unconscionable. If Nick weren't the victim, he'd applaud the quick thinking. But the last thing he needed was for his mom to have yet another reason to ground him.
She leveled an angry stare at him. "Nicky ..."
Nick held his arm up in surrender. "Mom—"
"Don't you 'Mom' me, boy. I can't believe you'd do this when you know better. Get your butt in bed. Right now. March!"
Rising from his chair, Nick growled low in his throat and cast a warning snarl at Kyrian. He'd get him ...
Kyrian let out an evil closed-lipped laugh. "I'll show you to your room."
His mom was having none of that as she blocked the doorway. "He can sleep in my room. With me."
Kyrian released a tired sigh. "I wondered where Nick got his suspicious nature from. You've taught him well."
His mom smoothed a stray piece of blond hair back from her face and tucked it in behind her left ear. "Yeah, well, I've seen the ugly side of people too many times. No offense to you, Mr. Hunter."
"I assure you, I've seen an even uglier side of them than you have. Many times, myself. Call me Kyrian, please."
That seemed to embarrass her. She gestured to Nick. "Come on, babe. The sun's already up. You need to get some sleep. You're still getting over that gunshot wound."
What she didn't know was that it had healed, courtesy of some powers he didn't want her to know about. If she did, with his luck, she'd report him to the authorities and he'd end up naked in a lab somewhere as an experiment. "Do I have to go to school?"
"Since it starts in less than two hours, no."
"It won't be open today anyway," Kyrian said, drawing their attention back to him. "The police are still investigating it."
His mom frowned. "How do you know?"
"I talked to one of Nick's teachers."
"Which one?" Nick was dying to know who on the faculty to avoid for fear of them ratting him out to his fanged employer.
Great. Just great. She'd never thought much of him, anyways. She was one of the lead faculty members who wanted him expelled. But there was nothing he could do about that tonight.
Nick yawned as his exhaustion caught up with him.
His mom tsk ed. "See how tired you are?"
He hated when his mom asked stupid questions. It took all his restraint not to smart off. But he'd already skated past one restriction tonight. No need to court another one.
So minding his tongue, he followed her back to their room. Like Kyrian's office, it was huge. Bigger than their entire itty-bitty condo, which he loathed. And it had a king-sized bed, so his mom wouldn't kick him in her sleep. She spun around in bed like a rotisserie chicken, and he despised anytime they had to share sleeping space.
But the four-poster bed looked like it could easily hold a family of ten in it. The neatest part to him was that the blue and gold comforter matched the wallpaper. Even the gold-foil-looking stuff, which was really cool on the walls. He'd seen that on TV shows ... and horror movies.
His mom turned to him. "How's your arm doing? You need any more medicine?"
Nick had to force himself not to react to her question. He'd already forgotten about that again. Crap. He better remember; otherwise, everyone would want to know how he healed it so fast.
"Good. Now hit the sheets."
Nick went to the other side and slid in. The moment he was settled, she pulled him against her and started playing in his short brown hair. He cringed and squirmed, trying to escape her. Unfortunately, she was like quicksand. Once you were dumb enough to get into its reach, it was over. "Ma! What are you doing?"
"Can't I hold you?"
He screwed his face up in distaste at the mere thought of it. "I don't know why you worry about Mr. Hunter when you're the one who's always sexually harassing me, Mom. Gah, can't I even go to sleep without you groping me?"
She popped him on the butt. Not hard enough to hurt. Just enough to get his attention. "Stop saying that. Showing my baby affection with a hug is not sexual harassment. You know, there are a lot of moms out there who have no sense of maternal instinct at all." Those who threw their kids out of the house and into the gutter because of a single mistake, like keeping a baby they didn't want her to. His mom didn't say it, but he knew when she ranted on this topic that it was a tirade against her own parents, who'd abandoned her when she was his age. "Be glad you have a mother who loves you."
He was glad of that. A lot, since she was basically the only person on earth who did. But now that he was a full head taller than her, it was weird when she tried to cuddle him like he was a baby. He could be almost seven feet tall like Acheron, and she'd probably still try to pull him into her lap. "Sorry, Mom. I'm just really tired."
"I know, precious." She leaned over, brushed his hair back from his face, and kissed his cheek. "Good night. Sleep tight."
Without another word, she turned over. Then scooted so that she was touching him with her icy cold feet. He would protest that, too, but it might hurt her feelings again.
I can't wait until I'm grown and have my own place....
I know you hate it now, Nick, but savor it. I promise you, you'll spend many more years of your life wishing you could see her again than you'll spend wishing she'd leave you alone.
Nick frowned at the intrusiveness of Ambrose in his head. How is it I hear you?
One day, I'll teach that power to you. You'll be able to project your thoughts to anyone, just like I can.
Will I be able to read other people's thoughts like you do, too?
Yes, you will.
That was cool. He could definitely get used to knowing what other people were thinking. It sure would make asking a girl out a lot easier if he knew going into it that she thought he was a total loser dork.
When can I learn it?
Ambrose laughed in his head. Patience, boy. You still haven't learned everything about controlling the dead that you should have. Or what you need to. Your buddy caused us to accelerate learning that power. And even though you survived, you really didn't learn much other than how to run from things out to kill you. Before something gets a lucky shot in, I think we should take things a little slower. Learn to crawl, and then I'll teach you to fly. Literally.
Nick's eyes widened at that last bit. I'll be able to fly? Really?
Kid, you have no idea what powers lie within you. What powers I'm going to teach you. But be warned, you are going to have many enemies come at you. Parthenopaeus being one of them.
Nick frowned again. Ash?
Yeah. He's not what he seems, and if you have any brains in your head—and I know you do—you'll cut him a wide berth ...
Before it's too late.
But he really liked Acheron. Surely someone who was so cool to be with and respectful to his mother couldn't be so bad. Everyone had problems. Because he and his mother had been rudely misjudged by so many, Nick hated doing that to others. He believed in liking, not necessarily trusting, everyone until they personally gave him a reason not to.
Excerpted from Invincible by Sherrilyn Kenyon. Copyright © 2011 Sherrilyn Kenyon. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I've devoured SK's Dark/Dream/Were Hunter novels and was thrilled to see her planning to delve into Nick's past. I have a 14 year old son, myself, and I love introducing him to characters I love (Harry Potter, anyone?). I knew that all the steamy stuff in the DH books wouldn't go over well with him (or with ME thinking about HIM reading sex scenes) but... I'm just not sure how much he's gonna "get" by reading this 'cold'. *I* had no problem picking right up on Nicky's story. I knew right away who Ambrose was, curious what Nekoda might be up to, picked up on the name-dropping as related to squire families, etc... I just don't know how a(n) SK 'virgin' won't be pretty confused for most of the first book and half of the second. All that said-- I did like both of them so far... and look forward to #3! Go Nicky, we're rootin' for ya!
I have read the entire Dark Hunter series and the entire Chronicles of Nick series. I have to say that first off this book seems short to me. I wanted much more. I also thought that this book has two purposes. One purposes is to progress the overall Dark Hunter story and introduce new characters. The other purpose is to tell the story of Nick as a child. These two purposes do not come together in a cohesive way. Part of the book is spent discussing what Nick is and why things happened they way they did. The other part of the book is this football coach story. The second part only serves to push the characters into confessions they didn't seem to want to make. I would appreciate if she could tie in the current experiences with how they shape Nick's future a little better.
New Orleans high school student Nick Gautier has not had an easy laid-back life as he and his mom live in abject poverty while his father resides in prison convicted of murder. He attends a private school, but has no friends as he fails to fit in with the affluent social scene. Until yesterday Nick assumed he was a normal disenchanted teenage outcast. His perspective was devastated when he learned that the supernatural exist. His boss is a Dark Hunter and near the place where his mom strips, shapeshifters surrounded him. Nick has powers though in the embryonic stage, but two sides want him, dead or alive. The Meloch, his Uncle Ambrose guides him to make the right choice. Nick fears what his Uncle Ambrose teaches him in the use of his powers. The demon Caleb and the Chthonian Xenon are Nick's guardians who try to steer him to make the right choices. Xenon, known as Kody helps Nick try to stop a demon from slaughtering people. Now if they somehow survive he hopes she will be his girlfriend, but then again he hopes not. The latest Chronicles of Nick in his teenage urban fantasy (see Infinity) is a creative intriguing off shoot of the Dark Hunter Saga similar in concept to the F, Paul Wilson's Young repairman Jack series. Nick is a good soul, but the dark powers want to turn him to manipulate him to assault humanity. While unanswered questions remain, fans will want to know how his destiny plays out especially if this freshman finally gets a girl who is not trying to kill him? With an action-packed story line, Sherrilyn Kenyon's fans of all ages will enjoy Nick's efforts to survive high school and a world turned paranormally upside down. Harriet Klausner
Better for the younger crowd. I love the series in which the character Nick was born. However this series is for the teens.
Taken directly from Sherrilyn Kenyon's Website Just when he thought things couldn't get any worse... Nick Gautier's day just keeps getting better and better. Yeah, he survived the zombie attacks, only to wake up and find himself enslaved to a world of shapeshifters and demons out to claim his soul. His new principal thinks he's even more of a hoodlum than the last one, his coach is trying to recruit him to things he can't even mention and the girl he's not seeing, but is, has secrets that terrify him. But more than that, he's being groomed by the darkest of powers and if he doesn't learn how to raise the dead by the end of the week, he will become one of them...
The spelling of Kody perioticly changed to Cody. Also you switch points of veiw without any indication that you are doing so. This book really confused me.
I was unable to stop reading this!! This book has what ever you want: Comedy, Horror, Mystery, Action, Romance, and much more! This book kept me up at night and I couldnt rest untill I finnished it. Nick is one of those characters that make you laugh so loud that people around you think "What is wrong with person!?" I have enjoyed and almost ate the book *wink*. As nick grows stronger and becomes more self aware he also gets closer to Nekoda (aka Kody). Lots of new characters are featured and Death himself comes to pay Nick a visit. Even Nick's mom gets another chance in life and begins to make something of herself. While Nick stuggles to learn to controle his powers we see a whole new side of Ambrose who reveals why he really came to the past and hints at some other events in the future. My favorite lines from this book were: "I know this clown," Grim said in an evil tone. "He keeps teasing me with these near death experiences. One day, I'm going to take his butt down even when I'm not supposed to. You can't keep knocking on my door and then slamming it im my face. It's just not right." Lol even Death has a sences of humor!!! Ayway I totally recomend this book to any fantasy fan and to the fans of all the other genres that I listed before. But before reading this book you have to read the first in the series Called: Infinity. You have to read this!!
I give this book a 5 star because of the never ending epicness, all the time life lessons, and the romance every other paragraph. Get This Book Right Away!
Its for young readers but when my mom said he didnt like the sex stuff in it i just laughed! I loved her book bad moom rising and love the chronicles of nick! Im 13 and love to read but my friend doesnt. When i gave him this book he didnt want to give it back! He read like he was playing a video game so that just tells how good it is! Love much, CAM
Ok, so for you who are familiar if Sherrilyn Kenyon's books you may be a little disappointed. Its Nick how Nick should have been but there are differences. There is still the odd sexual tension but on a teenage level which even though I just got out of that stage in my life, I still feel a little creepy reading about a girl wanting to do a 14 year old, but that's just me. The book isn't as informative as all her other books and of course just like the 1st book in this series, the end is pretty epic. You still hear from Acheron and Kyrian, but mostly it goes around Nick and all the forces trying to win him over. All around it is a good read and has some super funny/witty Nick humor in it, so over all its a 7. For those who are NOT familiar with Sherrilyn Kenyon's books this will probably be a good book. But seeing as your haven't read her other books how would you know?
It was so much better than th first because he uses his powers on pourpus for the first time.
It's way too good! Hooked and I can't let go. Love the series
I love all the Dark Hunter series and am now completely hooked on this series.
Awesome sequel :)
Love having my family and friends together in one place