Authors: Marylu Tyndall
ESCAPE TO PARADISE BOOK 1
ESCAPE TO PARADISE BOOK 2
© 2014 by MaryLu Tyndall
Print ISBN 978-1-61626-598-4
Adobe Digital Edition (.epub) 978-1-63058-528-0
Kindle and MobiPocket Edition (.prc) 978-1-63058-529-7
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted for commercial purposes, except for brief quotations in printed reviews, without written permission of the publisher.
All scripture quotations are taken from the King James Version of the Bible.
This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either products of the author’s imagination or used fictitiously. Any similarity to actual people, organizations, and/or events is purely coincidental.
Cover design: Faceout Studio,
Published by Shiloh Run Press, an imprint of Barbour Publishing, Inc., P.O. Box 719, Uhrichsville, Ohio 44683,
Our mission is to publish and distribute inspirational products offering exceptional value and biblical encouragement to the masses
Printed in the United States of America.
Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you
Dedicated to everyone who feels weak, for when you are weak, He is strong.
—Confederate Army surgeon turned Baptist preacher, James signed on as the colony’s only doctor but suffers from a fear of blood. Feeling as much a failure at preaching as he does at doctoring, James endeavors to rid the colony of all immorality, but instead ends up in a fierce battle between good and evil.
—Signed on as the colony’s seamstress, Angeline is a broken woman with a sordid past, which she prefers to remain hidden. Tough and courageous on the outside, inside she longs to be loved. She mistrusts all men and claims she can take care of herself, but the colony’s doctor keeps hindering her plans. To make matters worse, she is constantly haunted by visions from her past.
—A spoiled plantation owner’s daughter, who at first hated Brazil and hoped to return to Georgia, Magnolia, instead, fell in love with Hayden Gale. Now she is learning to value character over beauty as she receives God’s love and distances herself from the constant belittling she received as a child. If only the reflection of her soul would become more radiant.
—Con man who joined the colony in search of his father, whom he believed was responsible for the death of his mother. At first bent on revenge, Hayden, by the grace of God, has now forgiven the man and wants to make a good life for himself and his new wife. Instead, he finds himself thrust into the middle of a spiritual battle.
Colonel Blake Wallace
—Leader and organizer of the expedition to Brazil, Blake is a decorated war hero who suffers from posttraumatic stress disorder. By God’s power, he has learned to forgive his enemies and now hopes to start anew with his wife, Eliza. But when strange disasters strike the fledgling colony, Blake feels the weight of responsibility grow even heavier.
Eliza Crawford Wallace
—Blake’s wife and Confederate Army nurse who runs the colony’s clinic. Once married to a Yankee general, she was disowned by her Southern family and nearly ostracized by the colonists when the truth came out. Eliza is impulsive, stubborn, courageous, and kind—qualities she will need in the upcoming battle.
—Swindler, con man, and all-around crook, Patrick came to Brazil in search of gold. He is Hayden’s father and ex-fiancé to Magnolia—and the man who swindled her family out of everything they had.
Mr. and Mrs. Scott
—Once wealthy plantation owners who claim to have lost everything in the war, they had hoped to regain their position and wealth in Brazil by marrying off their comely daughter to a Brazilian with money and title. Unfortunately, their plans came to naught.
—Ex-lawman from Richmond, Dodd is fond of the ladies and in possession of a treasure map that points to Brazil as the location of a vast amount of gold.
—War widow who gave birth to her daughter, Lydia, on the ship that took them to Brazil, Sarah signed on to teach the colony’s children.
—Personal interpreter and Brazilian liaison assigned to New Hope to assist the colonists settle in their new land.
Moses and Delia
—A freed slave and his sister, along with her two children, who want to start over in a new land away from the memory of slavery.
—Slave to the Scotts.
October 18, 1866
The jungles of Brazil
he ground shook like a ship in a sea squall. Dirt and rocks pelted Angeline…striking…stinging. Her heart seized. Covering her head, she spun and staggered back the way she’d come—up toward the tunnel entrance and into the temple, where at least she wouldn’t be buried alive. Unless the roof of the ancient shrine caved in. A violent jolt struck, launching her against the rock wall as if she were made of paper. Pain radiated up her arm. Her legs quivered like the ground beneath them, and she fell onto the shifting dirt.
The hand that engulfed hers was rough like old rope, powerful, yet warm. An equally powerful arm swung around her waist as tremors wracked the tunnels. “Hang on. You’re safe,” James spoke in her ear, covering her head with his own. Pebbles rained down on them. Coughing, Angeline flung a hand to her mouth when the quaking finally stopped.
She drew a deep breath, her lungs filling with dust scented with spice and man and James. And standing there, ensconced in his embrace, fears that had risen so quickly when the ground had begun to shake suddenly vanished. She hated herself for it. She pushed from him. The stench of sulfur and mold instantly swept away his masculine aroma and resurrected her terror.
James stared at her oddly while he said to the men, “I told you we should not have brought the women.”
Brushing dirt from her skirts, Eliza, who stood in front of them with her husband, Blake, turned to face him. “You had no say in it, Doctor. We insisted. Did we not?” She smiled at Angeline. “There’s nothing to fear from a little shaking.”
Angeline wasn’t so sure. But then again, she didn’t possess Eliza’s courage and strength. Few women did. Those qualities, along with a multitude of others, were the reason Angeline admired her friend so much—the reason she’d cast aside her fears and agreed to venture into the eerie temple they’d found in the middle of the Brazilian jungle.
And then down into the tunnels beneath.
Yet at the moment, Eliza looked as if someone had dumped a bucket of chalk powder on her head. If Angeline weren’t so frightened, she’d giggle at the sight. But her alarm at being so far below ground during an earthquake stifled any laughter. She never should have come along. The men had insisted on investigating a loud explosion they’d heard last night that had shaken the ground all the way to their settlement of New Hope. When they feared it came from the temple, Eliza’s concern for Mr. Graves mounted, but now that Angeline had seen the ancient ruin and experienced the stink and heat of the narrow tunnels that spanned beneath it, she wondered why anyone would want to return. Or live here, as Mr. Graves had done since they’d arrived in Brazil.
Mr. Graves was one of the reasons Angeline had joined them today—to witness for herself the madman “digging his way to hell,” according to some of the colonists’ reports. Exaggerated reports, she was sure, but after Eliza had regaled her with further tales of gruesome obelisks, prison alcoves hewn in rock, strange Latin and Hebrew inscriptions, and Graves’s obsession with releasing powerful, invisible creatures, Angeline’s curiosity had gotten the best of her—regardless of James’s insistence that she remain in town. Or maybe because of it. Angeline grew tired of men dictating to her. Telling her how to live and what to do and how to behave.
And using her like a dried-up commodity.
So, she’d come. And now, despite the heat and the terror and the pain, the look of approval in Eliza’s eyes made it all worth it. Almost.
“We ladies don’t fear a little earthquake, gentlemen. Do carry on.” Eliza’s courage caused Angeline’s shoulders to lift just a little. The woman was nearly two months along with child, yet here she was burrowing into the depths of the earth right beside her husband. Oh, how Angeline longed to be brave and independent like Eliza. Not weak and submissive as she’d been her entire life. Angeline had not only come to Brazil to start a new life but to become a new person. To put both her past life and her past self behind her. If only she could…
The ground trembled again and she pressed a hand against the wall. Sharp crags pricked her fingers as they slid over rock that seemed to sweat in the infernal heat. “If there was an explosion here last night, I’m surprised these tunnels didn’t collapse.”
“Indeed,” James said, shifting his torch to his other hand, “though these walls appear to be solid enough.” He ran a sleeve over his forehead, leaving a streak of mud. “Still, being below ground makes me nervous.”
“I couldn’t agree more.” Blake, an ex-colonel in the Confederate Army and the leader of their colony, raised his torch and wiped dust from his wife’s nose. He planted a kiss on it and shook his head. “I told you it wasn’t safe.”
“Which is precisely why I didn’t want you coming here alone.” Eliza brushed dirt from his shirt. “Besides, we have to discover if Mr. Graves is injured.”
The colonel huffed his frustration and glanced at James with a shrug. But James was still examining the tunnel walls. “Odd. I wonder how primitive cannibals managed to score these tunnels out of rock.”
“This place is filled with nothing but questions.” Hayden’s voice preceded his appearance from the shadows behind them. “The main one gnawing at me now is why we are bothering to check on Graves when he’s made it plain he wants nothing to do with us.” He ran a hand through dark hair moist with sweat.