Have you ever tasted Absinthe? It’s strange, beautiful stuff and something of an acquired taste. Straight from the bottle it’s an earthy golden-green similar in hue to high quality olive oil. When mixed with water it becomes an enchanted, cloudy shade of pale opalescent jade. The mysterious green transformation is where the legend of the La Fée Verte, the green fairy begins. In cafés of the 19th century a patron would be served a fluted, parfait style glass, a small pitcher of water, a filigree spade-shaped spoon that often was a work of art in itself, and a tiny dish of chunky oblong sugar cubes.
The patron would balance the spoon across the top of the glass, place the sugar cubes atop the spoon and very slowly drizzle the absinthe over the sugar cubes, saturating them. Then a small amount of water would be trickled over the sugar cubes and allowed to dissolve them. The final step after the last bits of green sugar had slipped through the spoon is to stir the mixture until it becomes opaque. At that moment it’s time to ask La Fée Verte to be kind with you.
The first impression that might leap to mind while tasting modern commercial absinthe might be “Dear god that’s strong”, or it might be, “Wow this is just weird black licorice and a lot of booze.”
Taste it again and the other subtle flavors begin to come forward. Taste it again and you’ll notice there are a lot of layers to this stuff, multiple ingredients that are familiar yet very hard to name. Anise is right at the top, screaming “licorice!”, but there are other quietly seductive flavors as well as the possibly of a few sinister properties. Absinthe as it was made in the 19th century contained wormwood as one of the principle ingredients, which is said to induce hallucinations and eventually madness.
Madness? Wormwood? You might think that sounds a little unsetting but it didn’t stop the French from guzzling the stuff. Until World War I Absinthe was the most popular alcoholic beverage in France. French veterans returning from the Crimean War came home with a taste for exotic herbed alcoholic beverages. Absinthe’s astonishingly high alcohol content and notorious ability to intoxicate added to its popularity among the poor and serious café drinkers alike. Absinthe’s allure crossed all social boundaries in 19th century France. Intellectuals, artists and well-to-do middle class matrons all enjoyed and often overindulged in La Fée Verte’s warming and yet numbing embrace.
For professional purposes only I drank a little absinthe while editing Fairy In The Flesh. I called on La Fée Verte to bring me a beautiful vision as I asked the question, “What if your soul mate was born a century before you?” Fairy In The Flesh explores that question big time.
In this excerpt Maya has been tricked into drinking mojo laced absinthe, travels back in time and wakes up in 1903…
Fairy In The Flesh
by Katalina Leon
Genre: Paranormal erotic-romance, time-travel
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Number of pages: 85 pages
Word Count: 40k
Cover Artist: Syneca
About Fairy in the Flesh
Maya Rousseau’s fantasy vacation in Avignon France heats up when an eccentric enchantress tricks her into drinking mojo-laced absinthe.
An unexpected encounter with the green fairy causes Maya’s reality to have a serious melt down. She travels back in time and wakes up naked in the bed of her favorite bad boy Bohemian artist, the tall, dark and mysterious André Bosco. There’s nothing wrong with that except it’s 1903.
For André it’s love at first sight. He begs Maya to become his cherished model, muse and lover. The chemistry and shared passion between them is overwhelming. André’s a generous-hearted dream man but there’s a catch. Every hour they spend together bonds them tighter and time is running out. The same powers that flung Maya back to 1903 are preparing to snatch her back.
With a hundred and ten years separating these soul-bound lovers it’s uncertain if they can find a happy ending without the help of a little magic and La Fée Verte.
Note: Story contains super hot sex with an unattainable man, enchanted hallucinatory beverages, mischievous time-twisters and green fairies.
I’m an artist, an author, mother and wife. I write for Ellora’s Cave, Loose Id Publishing and a couple new publishers to be announced soon. I try to bring a touch of the mystical and a big sense of adventure to everything I write because I believe there’s a bold, kick-ass heroine inside all of us who wants to take a wild ride with a strong worthy hero.
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