I am back from the holidays and all the winter illnesses (I hope). I’m working on updating my website and sending out the official notice that January is writing month, so I may seem MIA. I have a manuscript to edit for another author, and a few covers lined up, but I’m going to try to get Ties of Blood written by the end of the month.
Speaking of the third installment in the Amaranthine series, my last post, before I was eaten by the December Gods, was the original beginning that I had to trash. So, I thought it might be fun to post the new unedited work-in-progress beginning. I don’t think it’s as catchy, but it gets into the action faster now with quicker character introductions.
(I took out the one spoiler sentence)
Katelina leaned against the car door, her cheek to the cold window. A winter scene moved past outside; cold and dark. It would be dawn soon and for most people time to get up, get dressed and go to work. But, Katelina’s life had turned into one of dark night after dark night, and in her world it was nearly bed time.
She glanced at the man beside her, if man he could be called. His posture was casual with one arm around her shoulders. Though it was December, one of the car windows was open and the chilly wind danced through his long raven hair. His eyes, so dark they were almost black, were rimmed in thick lashes and accented by a pair of heavy, arched brows. His smooth skin was pale and flawless, like finely chiseled marble, and his full lips were drawn back in a smile that revealed a pair of gleaming vampire fangs. He was beautiful and perfect; her immortal lover.
A cheerful voice called from the front seat, “We’re almost there,” and drew Katelina’s attention to the driver. Loren had short black hair that curled around his face and large brown doe eyes. He was a vampire, like Jorick, but he looked more human than Jorick did; his skin was pale but not as flawless, his movements were smooth, but not as feline, and his eyes weren’t as enchanting. He often made Katelina think of a cherub, though the persona hardly fit his personality.
“You awake back there, lunch?” Micah demanded from the passenger seat. Katelina glared at him, but he only shot back a fanged grin that wrinkled the tribal tattoo on his face. The ambient light from the dashboard gleamed on his bald head and revealed the outlines of the tattoos on his biceps. It might be winter, but Micah lived in perpetual summer and refused to wear anything more constricting than a tank top.
“Go bite yourself,” Katelina mumbled under her breath. Despite the fact she’d gotten used to living among what she once thought imaginary, she hadn’t learned to like most of them yet.
“I could bite you?” Micah suggested, but dropped off when Jorick growled low in his throat. “Ah, don’t take everything so personal. I promise I wouldn’t enjoy it.”
There was no point in replying to him, so she turned purposefully back to the window. The car full of vampires was a far cry from her old life, one she’d lived with relative success until she’d gotten a mysterious phone call. An enchantingly deep voice had insisted she come to an abandoned house to learn the identity of her murdered boyfriend’s killer. Against her better judgment and the advice of her best friend Sarah, she’d gone, and that’s when she’d met Jorick. Since that night she’d dropped into a world straight from the ScyFy Chanel’s Christmas marathons. But, it could have been worse. She could have ended up dead.
As if sensing the macabre thought, Jorick brushed a kiss across her forehead and said quietly, “It’s all right. We’re almost home.”