Pay it Forward Friday with Author Joleene Naylor and her .99 Halloween Sale!

Joleene Naylor:

Jorick gets a chance to air his grievances….

Originally posted on "The Light-Bearer Series" ~ by Emily Guido:

Some of my friends happen to be great Authors.

Joleene is one of them!  

The Halloween sale .99 each is an awesome buy!

Great reads and I recommend them highly!

Lots of love, Emily

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

all covers ebook

Amaranthine Series Synopsis:

Pulled into a world of darkness, Katelina’s fate becomes intertwined with that of Jorick, a dark, enigmatic vampire. To stay by his side, she must navigate intrigue, terror and bloodshed as they are drawn from one vampire war to another. Dreams of peace seem elusive, and complications abound in the form of mysterious vampires, old relics, and an ancient master. Join Katelina and Jorick in a world where vampires don’t sparkle and night is eternal.

“these books] are for adults… both the violence and the sex are not teenage stuff… and lurking behind the storyline is an adult theme.”

Steve Evans, author of Demented

“A dark PNR with ‘let me…

View original 1,043 more words

Halloween Sale!

Between now and November 1st, 2014, get all six books in the Amaranthine series for .99 each!

Join Katelina as on her journey in the world of night, blood and vampires. Laugh and cry with her as she encounters nasty villains, hot heroes, murder, war, explosions, getaways, lies, betrayal, heartbreak, and, of course, love. All the action can be yours for only $6.00.

Get yours today at:

halloween sale

Dream Stealer by HL Carpenter

Today’s excerpt is from the middle grade/young adult fantasy novella Dream Stealer by HL Carpenter

Is stealing a dream better than losing your own?

Ever wonder what became of the dreams you once had? Fancy Moonstruck can tell you.

Fancy is supposed to steal dreams. It’s what her family does for a living, and now that she’s fifteen, the job is hers.

It’s a job she’d rather not have. She knows first-hand what dreams mean to the dreamer because she dreams of her mom, who died five years ago. Losing her dream would be like losing her mom all over again. That’s a pain Fancy doesn’t want to inflict on anyone.

But the rules are clear: Steal a dream—or lose her own.

 

EXCERPT:

image003Another moment and the dream will be gone.

The winter sea breeze brushes my hair from my face, its cold caress as light as the layer of fear I wear like my dark hoodie, and as soft as my shallow breathing. In the way of every good thief, I take care that the whispery puff of my breath is the only sound I make.

Though I’m not touching the fleeing dream, it kisses my mind, sticky as a spider’s web. I stand still, wide-awake in the hush of the two a.m. darkness, staring at the pulsing silver sliver. The external details are breathtaking: the shivering tendrils of longing; the filaments of hope, quivering like the strings of a harp. They float through the window of the ramshackle beach cottage where Mrs. Hooper sleeps, reaching upward with fog-thin fingers, anchored within her heart, searching for the sky.

Mrs. Hooper’s dream is one of love-longing, and I peek inside as it sways above me, though I’m not supposed to. The Dream Buyers pay well for dreams of love-longing, and they pay especially well for dreams untouched by us Stealers.

Even so, I can’t stop myself from lingering inside the dream. I spend precious seconds there, warming myself in the heat of Mrs. Hooper’s longing for the love of her son, before drawing back into the chill of the night’s reality, and my work in it. I fumble to release the dream catcher, which dangles from my belt on a leather cord, then grasp the handle of the delicate, tightly-woven net. I focus on the hours of practice runs I went over with Dad. I need only reach out now, and my very first dream-stealing excursion will end in success.

And I will keep my family safe.

I must do this. Yet I hesitate. Dad says Mrs. Hooper will never miss her dream. Is it possible he’s wrong? I dream a similar love-longing dream myself, every night, and I know what it means to me—the same as this dream must mean to Mrs. Hooper.

If I’m right, I cannot take it from her.

I must take it.

I must…

Get your copy today at: Amazon — http://www.amazon.com/Dream-Stealer-HL-Carpenter-ebook/dp/B00J6HWZBK

And be sure to check out the authors’ site at http://www.hlcarpenter.com


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image001HL Carpenter is the pen name of a Florida-based mother/daughter duo who writes from their studio in Carpenter Country, a magical place that, like their stories, is unreal but not untrue. When they’re not writing, the Carpenters enjoy exploring the Land of What-If and practicing the fine art of Curiosity. Their work is featured on their website [http://www.hlcarpenter.com]


Interview with Mr. M

downloadWelcome, Mr. M. Please tell us a little something about your newest release.

Brian is that boy in middle school that is trying to fit in. That is definitely how I felt in middle school.  I wanted to fit in. He soon learns that he is not your ordinary, average, boy. His grandma is a ghost that practices black magic. Brian learns that in order to save his mother he will have to become a ghost and take down his grandma.

 What inspired you to write it?

Writing is something that I like to do for fun. The first three chapters are part of an unpublished short story. I really enjoy writing about relationships.

What was your favorite part?

I love the moment where Brian reveals to his best friend Johnny, that his grandma is an evil witch. They are both staring at this porthole with Murdock (a ghost tracker). Johnny sort of thinks he is losing his mind.  Brian knows he has to rescue his mom and his uncle.

            “I’ve got to get my mom and my uncle back,” I said.

            “Who is he?”

            “That’s Murdock. He’s with us.”

            “Nice to meet you,” Johnny said with a nod. He looked over at me. His blue eyes were the widest they had ever been. “Okay,” he said. “I believe you.”

 I like it because it is important to have friends you can count on. Johnny is the kind of guy Brian counts on.  The rest of the passage continues to show just how important good friends are.

 Do you have a favorite character? Why are they your favorite?

I obviously love Brian. He is the main character. I like him because he is real. He isn’t a goody two shoes. If anything, he sometimes comes across slightly sarcastic. However, Brian is always a guy you can route for. I really enjoyed writing about the close relationships Brian has with his friends.

What do you have planned next?

I want to write stories that appeal to you adults.  Some writers want to be the next Tom Clancy or John Grisham. I enjoy writing for young adults. Some of my favorite books of all time are young adult stories. I love Catcher And The Rye, The Outsiders, Rumblefish, and Wonder.

Where can people find more of you and/or your work?

This is my first book.  I am working on another.  Stay tuned for more!

Tell us one interesting thing about yourself or your book.

I am a huge sports fan.  I love the Dodgers and the Lakers.  Watching “Showtime Basketball” was an amazing time for Laker fans.  I am really excited that Byron Scott is returning to the Lakers as a coach.  He was one of my favorite players.

 

About the Author

Mr. M. lives in Los Angeles, California. A long-time fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Roswell, and Lost, Mr. M. always wanted to write his own stories. The Magical Adventures of Brian Leonard is his first published book.

You can get your copy of  The Magical Adventures of Brian Leonar by Mr. M at Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Magical-Adventures-Brian-Leonard/dp/1497511305

Interview with Tricia Drammeh – book reviewer and author

No, i’m not interviewing her, though I’d be happy to. She’s doing an interview today as a book reviewer and she was kind enough to mention the Amaranthine series.

http://www.carmen-fox.com/2014/07/24/read-path-tricia-drammeh/

That’s not the only notable part of the interview, however, so go check it or and then be sure to visit Tricia’s blog!

WIP Blog Hop

I’ve recently been invited to participate in the WIP Blog Hop. Basically, this blog hop involves answering seven questions about my current work in progress, tagging five new participants, and linking back to the person who nominated me. I was nominated by Tricia Drammeh, an awesome, awesome writer. Here’s a link to her blog where you can check out her work and more:

http://blog.triciadrammeh.com

a super rough version

a super rough version

Here we go…

1.What is the name of your character? Is he/she fictional or a historic person?

It’s Katelina, the protagonist of the other six books in the Amaranthine series, and she’s fictional (so is her super hot vampire boyfriend, sadly.)

2) When and where is the story set?

It’s a modern story and it’s in Asia/Europe at the moment. Hopefully this will be the last “overseas” book and they’ll come back to North America soon.

3) What should we know about him/her?

Katelina is a human who has been sucked into the world of the vampires. She’s not keen on becoming one of them. But, in this book, she may have no choice…

4) What is the main conflict? What messes up his/her life?

Her world got messed up a looooong time ago, probably when she first met the vampires, but in this book it starts messed up – seven picks up right where six left off and Katelina finds herself in China, separated from her boyfriend and her friends and allies. Things just get worse from there.

5) What is the personal goal of the character?

She just wants to live, I think.

6) Is there a working title for this novel, and can we read more about it?

Clash of Legends, and so far I haven;t posted any tidbits anywhere. Those will come later.

7) When can we expect the book to be published?

I am still hoping by the end of the year, but it looks like we may be buying a house in Iowa, moving, and God knows what else, so we’ll see.

 

These are the authors I’ve nominated to participate in the blog hop:

 

Please stop by and check out their blogs. If you subscribe to receive updates, you’ll be notified as soon as they post their contribution to the tour!

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Four Question Blog Tag

I was tagged by the prolific Barbara G Tarn – and when I say prolific I mean it. you should SEE the list of books she has out. Seriously. I haven’t managed to find time to read even half I bet. Yeesh! But that doesn’t mean YOU shouldn’t try. Seriously, check it out! http://creativebarbwire.wordpress.com

And now for the questions:

Question 1: What am I working on?

Clash of Legends – book seven in the Amaranthine series. I don’t have a nice synopsis written up because I’m only on chapter seven so I don’t know what is going to happen yet, but expect a few major changes for some of the characters. I think.

Question 2: How does my work differ to others of its genre?

There are vampire but it’s not YA. No one sparkles. There’s romance, but it’s not the number one focal point. There is fighting and gore and things blowing up ala an action movie, but the main character is a woman who is NOT a kick-ass heroine… So it’s a hard sell/tiny corner niche series. If I ever get time on my hands I’ll turn it into a manga.

Question 3: Why do I write/create what I do?

I write what I like. Hopefully other people like it too.

Question 4: How does your writing/creating process work?

It’s different for every book. This one doesn’t appear to want to be written in order. I have been writing a scene, then back tracking to fill in the things that go between it and the last scene and then editing the initial scene to fit with the stuff that went in between – it’s very timey-wimey for some reason.

 

I had a list of people to tag but after finding out that one of them passed away I am kind of in a bleh space, so if you’re reading this and would like to do it please take the tag and run with it. All my author friends have interesting WIPs worth sharing.

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Ark – Tales of the Executioners

executioner banner

This is the second of the Tales of the Executioners, which I’ll eventually release as freebie short reads and then bundle together in a collection, much like Vampire Morsels.

The Executioners are the vampire’s equivalent of special police. They go on “assignments” that The Guild (the vampire government) sends them on, and they don’t have a reputation for being very nice. It’s a reputation that is often well deserved.

ARK

This story takes place in April, 1972.

Rain streaked the windshield and Ark stared through it to the dark landscape beyond. The world was colored in night; shades of blue and purple. It had been so long since he’d seen the sun that he’d forgotten the other colors. Vague memories stirred, over bright and painted in green, blue, and yellow. They belonged to another place and another time. Just like she did.

A sign went past. “Welcome to California”. The painted letters filled his stomach with lead. Unwittingly, his eyes were drawn to the manila folder in the passenger seat. He knew the contents by heart. The neatly typed papers outlined the terrible crimes of a vampiress and passed sentence on her. He’d read hundreds like it in the last two hundred and sixty years since he’d joined the Executioners – the elite police force of the vampires. He’d seen hundreds of pictures and hundreds of sketches. He had learned to take them with the cold detachment of someone with a job to do. They had broken the law. They deserved to be punished. But this time, when he’d looked into the dark Xeroxed eyes of the photo, his insides had turned to ice.

It had been so long since he’d seen her, and in that time a thousand different emotions had come and gone, until he’d thought he was indifferent to her. He told himself for the thousandth time that he could do this. He could do his duty, keep his honor. Even if she begged he would not be swayed.

She isn’t who the woman you remember anymore.

It was three in the morning when he stopped for gas and directions. The man inside was courteous but wary, as he should be. Though Ark was careful not to show his fangs, or do anything that would send the cashier into a panic, the man could still sense the unnatural danger standing next to the candy bar display. Ark knew because he could smell the man’s fear and hear his thoughts. It was a trait he’d inherited when he’d been turned into a vampire and he’d spent the last three-hundred-plus years perfecting it.

The man’s directions were good, and Ark soon parked in front of a stucco house on the edge of town. Yucca plants swayed in the dark and palm trees rustled above his head. He checked the time and logged it in his book, then grabbed the dagger from the glove box. By habit he pulled it from the scabbard, just enough to see the cold gleam of the clean blade. He snapped it back with a clink of finality, and forced himself out of the car and up the stone walk.

This is just an assignment. Like any other. She broke the law.

He didn’t knock, only threw the door open and strode inside. A guard sat on the couch wearing the customary gray uniform of The Guild. He jumped to his feet, magazine in hand and surprise on his face. His fear melted into terror and he snapped a shaky salute. “S-Sir. You’re early.”

Ark shoved a folded piece of paper at him. “Take me to the prisoner.”

The guard quickly scanned the contents. Underneath the pronouncement was Malick’s signature, and seal; A knot of three interlocking rings. It was the same symbol Ark wore around his neck, the sign of the Executioners and their authority.

The guard gave a stiff nod and mumbled, “She’s, um, she’s this way. Downstairs.”

Ark followed through the house and down the cellar steps. The basement was a single windowless room with a dirt floor. A pair of coffins sat against one wall, the lids askew. Guards were scattered around. Three played cards, one fiddled with a transistor radio. Two more were lost in conversation. In the midst of them all sat Dovina, tied to a chair, arms behind her back. She wore a pair of faded jeans and a loose, patterned top. Her long golden hair fell around her shoulders, a casual braid intermingled amongst the strands. Her pale skin was as flawless as Ark remembered and her eyes…

Ark’s escort cleared his throat. The guards jerked to their feet, their pastimes forgotten, but Ark barely noticed them. All of his attention was riveted on Dovina. He sought desperately for the cold indifference that had settled over his memories of her but in her presence it was gone, replaced with crystal clear moments that played like movies behind his eyes. She stood in the courtyard, bathed in golden sunlight, a pail in one hand, and a rough dress draped over her frame. As if she sensed his attention she turned towards him, and when their eyes touched, fire erupted in his chest and left him breathless.

He tried to swallow away his emotions and find his usual calm. The tinkle of piano played in his head and in his mind he saw her as she was when she was his, dressed in silk, her fingers trailing languidly across the ivory keys, the same way that she touched him in the dark. The pretty smile was on her lips and, though the other men stared, the gleam in her eyes said she only saw him.

Just as he only saw her.

“Ark. I hoped it would be you.”

Her voice brought him back to the present, and he jerked the paper from the guard’s hands.  Two of them hurried forward to untie her and pull her to her feet. One stood at each arm, holding her up, waiting for Ark to announce the sentence and carry it out. He was an Executioner. He had other assignments. He didn’t have time to linger. He would want to do it quickly.

And I should, he thought. Before it’s too late.

But it was already too late.

The guards looked at Ark expectantly, and he motioned them to release her. “I can handle this myself. I suggest you get started on the paper work.”

“We’ve already-” the guard faltered and broke off at one look from Ark. “Yes, sir. Of course.” He snapped a quick salute and motioned the others to do the same. Though the pair that held Dovina’s arms exchanged quizzical looks, they relented and followed their fellows upstairs.

The cellar door closed and Dovina remained standing, her ocean colored eyes locked with his. Though he couldn’t feel it, he knew she was in his head, sorting through his thoughts. Just as he could read minds, so could she. The product of sharing the same master.

“You might as well read the sentence. I know what it says.”

He drew a deep breath and looked away. Masonry crumbled in the corner and it held his gaze, as if it was the most interesting thing in the world. “I did what I could. I asked Malick for leniency.”

And Malick’s answer had been to give Ark the assignment instead of Phillip. “Since it so concerns you,” he’d said, wearing his cold, benevolent smile. Ark could see beneath the fake kindness to the darkness underneath, but there was nothing he could do. He had sworn an oath to uphold the laws and, as the head of the Executioners, those laws were at Malick’s whim.

He put as much authority into his voice as he could manage. “You killed an entire coven, Dovina. Why?” She stepped towards him and he looked to her, then back to the corner again.

“They killed Eric, Ark. What was I supposed to do?”

Eric. His name was like the dagger that Ark stuffed in his pocket. “And what did Eric do to them?”

“Nothing.”

She came to a stop before him. For a moment he could see their entire history written on her face, hear the echo of past laughter in her voice, the shadow of forgotten tears in her eyes. The world was old even then, but they were young. Constance was his aunt, or so she called herself, and he worked diligently at every task she set for him. When she offered immortality to her “pretty nephew”, he took it, and when she offered him a gift of anything he desired, he asked only for Dovina, the servant girl down the street. The one whose golden hair shone like a halo in the sunlight.

Constance acquired her, and Dovina came to him readily enough. Together they tasted the darkness and all it had to offer. It wasn’t the dark gift that changed her, rather time itself. A new century crept close and they left Constance for the New World. In the wilderness they spent nights lost among the trees, slipping into what passed for civilization and out again, like ghosts. They made love in the wilds with only the birds as witness, and danced naked under the cloak of moonlight. But eventually the siren call of humanity was too strong. It was harder and harder to leave behind the fire lit cities, harder to give up the taste of human blood for that of the beast. They rented a room above a shop, and paid their bills with coins taken from their victims. Dovina wore gay frocks and slippers, and he had a ridiculous wig that was the envy of half the township. They thought themselves dashing after the fashion, but privately laughed at the ridiculousness of it all.

Then the vampire came. In a single night he slaughtered the inhabitants of one street and started on a second. When he reached their room Ark removed his head and with trembling hands cut out his still beating heart. The Executioners arrived the next night, surprised to see their work finished for them. There were only two of them then and they were recruiting. They could use the help, and it would be good for him to do something useful; something besides wear silly wigs and buy silk.

Dovina watched as he bowed before Malick and swore the oath. The job was easy enough at first; mostly rogue vampires who thought a new world meant they could slaughter at will with no regard for secrecy, but as time passed the assignments became bloodier and more frequent. The territories continued to expand, and his absences grew longer. He rode away one too many times in the middle of the night, his orders clutched in his hands, Dovina watching from the doorway. One evening he returned to find the eyes of a stranger looking back at him. Dovina’s words were soft, but the meaning behind them hurt. There was someone else, and though she hadn’t allowed him to openly court her, she was considering it. She loved Ark, but she needed time to think.

She left in the rain, wearing a long hooded cloak that dragged in the mud. Ark stood silent in the doorway and cursed under his breath as the carriage drove away. He wished he could drown himself in drink and forget the world, but even feeding on the blood of drunks only did so much. His vampire physiology metabolized it too quickly and left him sober through the decades that followed. When seventy years had passed and he couldn’t contain his curiosity any longer. He went looking and he found her.

The memory popped to the surface of his mind, sharp despite the eighty years since. Red roses climbed the side of the house, and laughter tinkled through the open windows. He couldn’t see them, but he could smell them: Dovina and her Eric-

She stiffened in surprise. “Why didn’t you tell me you were there?”

“What was the point? You’d obviously made your choice.”

Her eyes moved up and down his lean frame before she brushed his cheek with her fingers. His breath stuck in his throat and for a moment he couldn’t move.  “You made the choice for me. You were always gone.”

He caught her hand and pulled it away. “Then why didn’t you ask me to quit? One word from you and I’d have left it behind.” He searched the depths of her sea colored eyes, pushing past them into the thoughts beneath, looking for an explanation, but there were only mismatched memories. “Dovina?”

“You swore an oath to them, Ark. You wouldn’t break it lightly.”

“I swore one to you first, or did our wedding vows mean nothing to you?”

“They were the promises of youth, Ark. A vow you gave before you had a chance to contemplate the long fall of the years. When you pledged yourself to me did you imagine what a hundred years would really mean? Two hundred? Three hundred? The changes they would bring?”

“Is an oath any less valid because it lasts longer than you first imagined? Are feelings any less…” He trailed off and looked away.

She pulled her hand free. “It doesn’t matter. You can see the truth in me, just as I can see your orders in you. Can’t we part as friends this time?” He didn’t answer, and she pressed on. “Read the sentence.”

He knew he should, but he couldn’t force himself to do it. She gently pried the paper from his fingers and read aloud, “Dovina, fledgling of Constance, on this day, the twenty-first of April, 1972, based on testimony and evidence submitted to The Guild, you are found guilty of coven slaughter without just cause, and are hereby sentenced to death, to be carried out by Executioner at earliest availability.”

She handed the paper back to him. “See? That wasn’t so hard. Do you want me to sit over there, or should I just stand here or-”

He grabbed her up suddenly and captured her lips with his. She stiffened and then flowed against him. Her lips parted and soft sigh escaped as her tongue darted into his mouth. Though he clutched her as hard as he could, the kiss finally ended, and she lay her head on his chest. “Do you remember the party Monsieur Pelotte threw? Before you joined the Executioners?”

He thought of her again, leaning over the piano, toying with the keys, but his voice wouldn’t work.

“He had that violinist, from Boston. What was the song he played?” She started to hum, swaying to the tune. “Dance with me Ark. One more time.”

She slipped her arms around his neck and he reflexively wrapped his arms around her as she continued to move to the music in her head. “It’s been a long time, Ark. But if you close your eyes, doesn’t it almost feel like nothing has changed? As if all the things in between never happened.”

He buried his face against her neck and inhaled deeply.  Beneath the scent of her shampoo she smelled the same as she had on that long ago night. Her body was as soft and yielding as it had been, and her hair as silky. But he knew better. Though she might appear the same on the outside, the blessing of immortality, on the inside she had changed. She was still the cold stranger he’d come in the night to find, and the sameness was an imitation, like a moment from his youth he was trying to recapture and live over and over. “Time won’t let me forget.”

“No, I suppose it won’t.” She released him reluctantly and stepped back.  Tears trailed silently down her cheeks, like the rain on the windshield. They both knew what had to happen; what was supposed to happen. He would jam the dagger through her heart, twist it once or twice for good measure, and then perhaps cut it out just to be sure she was dead. The guards would log the time of the execution, dispose of the body, and head back to the citadel in Iowa where they’d file the paperwork. Meanwhile he’d be somewhere else, killing someone else.

They broke the Laws.

The balm that usually soothed his conscience tasted like poison and he wanted to spit it out. His mind raced as he tried to find a solution, a way out, but there was none. Malick had passed judgment himself. There was no way to appeal. There was nothing to do except run until there was nowhere left to run to. And then – and then the other Executioners would come. They’d bring an army of guards and no matter how good Ark thought he was, he knew he would die. Maybe he’d get lucky and they’d strike him down first, or maybe he’d have to watch as they hacked Dovina to pieces.

“It’s not the ending I want.” She gave him a sad smile and he wiped away her tears. “This will be quick but that…they’ll make us both suffer, Ark.” She reached into his pocket and pulled out the dagger. “Just be done with it.”

He jerked the weapon from her hand and fell back.

“You don’t understand. You asked what Eric did to deserve death, and I told you nothing because it’s true. I’m to blame. I was the one who refused to leave. That other coven wanted our territory. First they asked, then they pushed, and finally Eric pushed back. He didn’t want to but I-I talked him into it. We were here first. We had a right to be here. They were the ones who should leave. So he went to their den and confronted them, and that’s when they killed him. Don’t you see, Ark? I as much killed him as they did. Had I left him alone we would have moved on and he’d still be alive but I had too much pride. This was our house. Our land. Our hunting ground. Our-” She broke off and gave a mirthless laugh. “They screamed, Ark. They screamed when I killed them. They were young and cocky, but when the moment came they were all cowards.” Her spine snapped straight and she met his eyes. “I’m not a coward. I accept the punishment, so do it and be done.”

The dagger was like a lead weight in his hand, too heavy to draw and lift. And yet…

“You can hear their thoughts, too,” she whispered. “Those guards. One is on the phone right now, reporting to The Guild that you’ve dismissed them, that they don’t think you’ll go through with it. You know they have orders to kill you if you don’t.”

“Let them try. I’ll-”

She laid a finger to his lips. “In the end you’ll die, too, like Eric, a second casualty to my pride. How many should lose their lives because I was here first? Think of it as just another assignment, like all the others.” She met his eyes.  “You swore an oath to uphold the laws. I broke them. I was found guilty. Keep your honor.”

Honor. It was a cruel word for her to use, and she knew it. He wanted to rage at her, demand to know where her belief in his honor had been when she left in the rain, but there was no point. They could talk in circles, still the end would be the same. Just as the past could not be unwritten, neither could he future they’d created.

He unsheathed the dagger and held it up like a macabre offering. Light glinted from the cold steel with a finality that cut through him. Somewhere deep inside a voice screamed that there had to be another way, that Malick would make an exception, even though he knew he wouldn’t.

Not for me.

He closed his eyes as the dagger stabbed into her. The force of the blow knocked her backwards and he looked to see her stumble and fall. She landed on the floor. Her golden hair fanned out around her head like a medieval halo. The dagger protruded from her chest, and crimson surged up and around it to soak the thin material of her blouse.

She choked a mouthful of blood, then met his eyes for a final time. “I…always loved…you, Ark.”

He dove to pull the dagger free, to stop it before it was too late, but she grabbed the hilt and rammed it the rest of the way. Her body seized and shuddered, then fell still. He landed on his knees and cradled her against him. Her blood gushed warm and wet against him and he buried his face against her neck. Even now she still smelled just the same; just the same as she always had.

His mind flashed back to that night. He climbed off his horse and strode to the house to find her holding a letter in her hand. “The messenger brought you orders,” she whispered. “But you’ve just come back.”

He took the paper from her hands and pushed back a weary sigh. “I swore an oath, Dovina. I must see it through.”

He turned to go, and she made a small noise in her throat. “Ark, there’s…There’s a man. A vampire. His name is Eric. He’s asked to court me.”

“But you’re already married!”

“Am I?” He stared at her incredulously and she spoke again, her voice trembling, “I need some time.”

Anger rose sharp and bitter. “It seems you’ve already had enough, haven’t you? Constance warned me time would change you, but I didn’t believe her.”

The memory faded and he stared into Dovina’s glassy ocean colored eyes and for the first time he realized that it wasn’t Dovina who had turned into a stranger and deserted him. He was the one who’d gone from a gentle lovesick fool to a pitiless killer with a job to do. He was the one that had abandoned her in everything but word. He was the one who had changed.

And there was no going back.

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This version’s better than the one on my other blog, though it might still need a polish. I don’t know, maybe not.

Just a reminder, Legacy of Ghosts is still up for vote in the cover wars, so if you have a moment please stop in and cast your ballot. Thanks so much to everyone who’s done so already. you guys are awesome!

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Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess by Dormaine G

Today’s excerpt is from the  novel Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess by Dormaine G

 

madame lilly DORMAINE G ebook cover

Standing up, Lilly’s body stiffened uncontrollably. There was something wrong. A force was pulling her in. That wasn’t supposed to happen . . . she was supposed to feel in control at all times but she was losing it.

There was something else here, something she hadn’t invited. Despite the humid night air her body turned cold, rigidly cold, making her teeth chatter. Her followers saw the change when she stood up so suddenly. They stopped beating the drums since they could tell something was wrong by the way she held herself so tightly.

A force had a hold on her. Lilly could feel it in her bones. She desperately wanted to close her eyes but something within her wouldn’t allow it.

The wind howled and the dirt flew around them, making it almost impossible to see. Something fierce was coming for her. The other spirits knew it because they stopped walking but instead hid in the shadows of the trees, finally showing themselves as they moved swiftly past the other spirits that were coming right at her. There were two of them, no longer holding human forms, but white shadows of their former selves.

Lilly held her arms rigid as the forces rapidly circled her body, spinning her round to see her. Stopping close to her face, they intertwined with each other as if to figure out what she was. They appeared identical with hollow pits for eyes and mouths but she could sense they were not truly the same. They hovered in front of her for only a moment before they shot through her body, taking a part of her with them and knocking her to the ground from the blinding pain.

************

About the Author

I was born in New York and lived there with my family until I was eight when we moved to Mississippi. I studied the skill of nursing in Louisiana and New York but learned life experiences in Massachusetts. After stationary nursing in NY and travel nursing to other states, I planted roots in Colorado. Throughout the years I’ve always written stories but never thought to publish. After years of playing adult and realizing that I will never grow up, I took some time off to live the dream of writing. My first book, Connor, was published September 2013 which is book 1 of the series. I truly love writing and will continue to do so.


You can grab your copy of Madame Lilly, Voodoo Priestess on Amazon

One of *Those* Posts

Since the epic release of book 6, Children of Shadows, I haven’t been around very much. I’d apologize, but there are only so many hours in the day. Besides, I doubt anyone cares that much. For those who do care, or who find these chatty “what I’ve been doing post” interesting, well, this one’s for you.

Legacy of Ghosts is still participating in Cover Wars until the end of May, so if you get a chance stop by and vote. You can vote once a day, every day.

a super rough version

a super rough version

I’ve been working on Clash of Legends, the seventh book in the Amaranthine series. You can keep track of where I am on the rough draft by looking at that cool progress meter to the right – the one that has a little bean with legs on it. Why is he a bean? I have no idea, but I thought it was fun. As of this posting I have just started chapter seven of Clash of Legends. It’s going to be a very exciting chapter and I hope to have the whole book done by the end of the year.

We’re still settling my mother-in-laws estate. I know. You’d assume everything was done by now, but hardly anything is. It’s very frustrating for all of us.

We’re in the process of *maybe* buying a house. We are going to buy a house, but we’ll see if it’s the one we’re currently looking at or if we need to keep looking. Unfortunately, we’re looking at houses in South West Iowa, which makes looking at them, signing papers, etc. a huge pain in the but because it means running to Iowa all the time (a six hour trip one way) and so I lose the whole weekend every time we go. (And don’t even ask me about what the cell signals are like, not that my new phone has enough available data to make it worth trying).

If we do go for this house I’ll be gone a lot more with packing and such, and then when we close the house needs some immediate work, so I’ll disappear to do that… yeah, everything is kind of up in the air right now, but just settled enough to be a pain in the butt. I have a pile of projects stacked up to get to some day and a bunch of book covers I need to try to catch up on… but hey, I’m still alive, so that’s what counts.

Not sure I can say the same for all of my characters ;) signature for white

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  • Joleene Naylor

    Joleene Naylor

    An independent author, freelance artist, and photographer for fun who loves anime, music, and writing. Check out my vampire series Amaranthine at http://JoleeneNaylor.com or drop me a line at Joleene@JoleeneNaylor.com

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