In Love’s Last Kiss, my romantic suspense novel that released yesterday, the hero and heroine (Kade Dolan and Rose Guthrie) are caught in a passionate, star-crossed love story where they believe the Fates are working against them. They have to fight like heck to protect each other and win their happily ever after. Time is–literally–running out for both of them, and Fate isn’t helping.

Like for most of my books, I did a ton of research for Love’s Last Kiss (the next book in the Deadly Force series) including reading up on Greek and Roman mythology. The Fates, aka The Moirai, were three weaving goddesses who assign unique and individual destinies to mortals at birth. Clotho is the Spinner. Lachesis is the Alotter. And Atropos is the Inflexible. In the Greek pantheon, they were the daughter of Nyx (the goddess of night) but in the Roman pantheon they are the triplet daughters of Zeus and Themis, one of the original Titans.

These three sisters had so much power that even their father Zeus, the king of all the gods, had no power to change their decisions. The Greek word “Moira” means “share” or “portion” and includes everything from food to beauty to wealth to victory in battle. The Moirai were “apportioners”, meaning that they gave each person their own portion of everything that life has to offer, including years living on Earth.

These three sisters each had a different “spinning” task. Clotho spun the thread of life, Lachesis measured out each life’s allowed length of time, and Atropos cut the thread with her shears. They were also each assigned a different time period in a person’s life with Atropos watching over a person’s past, Clotho handled the present, and Lachesis protected the person’s future. In Greek and Roman times, these three sisters were represented as beautiful young nymphs. Later on, especially during the Middle Ages, artists represented them as old hags–probably out of anger and revenge for a perceived lack of allotments.

Although their jobs were separate, together they were required to write everything down in the Book of Fate–a story about the life of each and every person ever born. But they were never allowed to intervene in human history–except for that one time. When a mortal named Meleager was born, they told his mother Althaea that her son would live only until the log burning in the hearth burnt to ashes. So she took the log out of the fire and kept it safe. Years later, Meleager killed his uncle’s (Althaea’s brothers) and she was so heartbroken that she burnt the log and killed her own son. Then, filled with despair, she killed herself, proving to the Fates that they should never get involved in the affairs of humans.

And only once were the sisters deceived–by a god named Apollo. Upon learning that his friend Admetus was to die, Apollo got the Fates drunk and convinced them to save Admetus. Because a balance must always be struck (something Rose learns well in Love’s Last Kiss), Apollo had to find another man willing to trade his life for Admetus. When Apollo failed, Admetus’ wife, Alcestis, agreed to give up her life for her husband’s and saved him.

I took this story of Alcestis and wove it into the end of Love’s Last Kiss where the hero, Kade, sacrifices himself for Rose, his heroine. (although I promise it has a happy ending!)

But the sisters of Fate also had a mother–Themis–who was Zeus’ second wife. Themis represented the law and undisputed order: The Divine Right. She created and protected divine laws that govern everything that all humans and gods must adhere to. As a goddess of natural order, she had many daughters, besides the Moirai, including The Hores (The Hours) who represented the seasons as well as the rotation of time until the end of the world. These goddesses were named Eunomia (the protector for Fair Order), Deke (the goddess of trials) and Erene (the goddess of peace). Themis, also a goddess of prophecy, also gave birth to the nymphs, oracles, and Astraea (a virgin goddess of stars from which we get the words “astral” and “astrology”).

Themis was so powerful that she could, if she wanted, stop time or bring and end to the suffering of all humanity. She is often portrayed holding a sword in one hand and a set of scales in the other. The sword represents her protecting humans from the whims of the other gods while the scales tell the world (both humans and gods) that everything in the world must be balanced. A promise for a promise. A death for a death. A life for a life. This is something that the Fianna, the villains in Love’s Last Kiss, take very seriously. It’s also the key to how Rose saves Kade in the end of the book.

A huge thank you to all who read and have reviewed the book already! Reviews are huge to the success of an author’s career. They don’t have to even be great reviews–it’s the number of reviews that get the bots going, not the number of stars. As long as the review is honest, that’s all that matters. I hope you all have a great week!

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