Unedited Snippet Eleven from Book Five

The rough draft is *** DONE *** <—(yes the news is so joyous it deserves all the font embellishments)

It is right now with beta 1 & 2 and then I have to do my first read over, then I will have to see if the other beta readers are ready for it.  I am *hoping* to have it out by the end of February, but that may be pushing it depending on their schedules.

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

Katelina watched as Neil counted silently on his fingers, undoubtedly trying to figure out who the newcomers could be. Her shoulders tensed as she heard them removing their shoes, and then walking down the corridor. There was no way that this could work out well.

Oren apparently had the same thought because, when he appeared in the doorway and locked eyes with Verchiel, his lips drew back in a snarl and his hands became ready fists at his sides.

Jorick motioned him to relax. “Leave it for now.”

Oren walked inside slowly, his sister right behind him. They took their seats, and Torina struggled with her hemline. Micah and Loren were the last through the door, and both only had eyes for Torina’s exposed thighs.

Verchiel gave the vampiress an appreciative wink and then turned to Oren. “Taking a vacation after all the trouble you caused?”

Oren’s eyes narrowed to slits. “I don’t recall causing ‘trouble’.”

Verchiel snorted. “What do you call that little incident at the citadel?”

“It was war!” Oren cried and slammed his emphatic fist into the padded floor.

At his words, Cyprus suddenly stiffened and comprehension dawned on his face. “You’re Jorick’s missing fledgling!”

“Yes he is,” Jorick answered with annoyance. “But that doesn’t matter right now.”

The Executioner rounded on him. “Of course it does! He’s wanted for questioning concerning the attack that he led!”

“The miscreants have already been dealt with!” Jorick snapped. “They executed the self-described leaders of the covens and released the others!”

“But your fledgling was the real leader,” Cyprus insisted. “The vampire they executed in his place-”

“Is dead just the same,” Jorick finished. “Punishment has been given, an example has been made, it’s finished.”

Cyprus drew himself up. “We have our orders.”

Verchiel grinned. “And if you know what’s good for you you’ll disregard them, unless you want Jorick to turn your head into a lamp.”

Unedited Snippet Ten from Book Five

Guess who’s coming to dinner… or whatever they want to call it.

Okay, so it’s December and the book is not done. I lost a lot of time to unexpected house hunting and all the research that goes with an out of state move. However, due to some family issues, I think we’ll be putting any move on hold for awhile, so hopefully I can get this sucker finished!

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

The ride was mostly quiet. Maeko pointed out a few landmarks but, between the darkness and the tinted windows, Katelina couldn’t see them, so she gave up. It was only as the car drew to a stop that the girl made a soft squealing sound and rubbed her hands together. “I hope you enjoy your surprise, Kate-chan!”

Katelina stiffened and suspicion surged through her. “What surprise?”

“You’ll see!” Maeko chirped as the driver climbed out and opened her door with a bow. “Come, please!”

Katelina slid across the seat and out into the night. They were parked in front of a tall apartment building with wide glass double doors. Maeko led Katelina past the uniformed security men and through a shiny tiled lobby to the elevator. Katelina leaned against the wall, nervous hands concealed in her pockets. “You mentioned a surprise?”

The girl winked and placed a finger to her lips. “Just wait, please!”

The elevator opened on a private, paneled lobby. Katelina had seen enough movies to know they were at the penthouse. The shiny floor and bright lights were a change from the vampire dens she’d experienced before, and it wasn’t a change she was sad about.

She followed Maeko to the door and waited as it was unlocked. Her mind raced as she tried to determine what kind of surprise lay in wait for her. What could the  vampiress have that she’d be surprised to see? Was it even a good surprise?

Inside the door was a corridor and a small entry way where a row of slippers and shoes waited. Katelina took in the odd assortment of footwear. There was a pair of motorcycle boots, a set of sparkly emerald heels, a pair of tennis shoes and-

“Are you following us or what?”

Katelina jolted at the familiar voice and found herself face to face with a bald vampire. The goatee and tribal tattoo on his face gave him the air of an ex-con, and the clothes didn’t help; faded jeans and a tank top. It was –

 

Who was it?

 

Unedited Snippet Nine from Book Five

And now some excitement….

Okay, so it’s November and the book is not done. I lost a lot of time to unexpected house hunting and all the research that goes with an out of state move. However, due to some family issues, I think we’ll be putting any move on hold for awhile, so hopefully I can get this sucker finished!

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

Katelina turned to face a tall, broad shouldered man. His uniform was sharp and creased, and spoke of some official office she didn’t recognize.

He motioned with the gun towards one of the exits. “You will come with me, Miss Mauldin. There is someone who is very anxious to see you.”

His words chilled her and she raised her hands like she’d seen on TV. “Wh-who?”

“You will see.”

He motioned again and she moved, her eyes trained on the weapon. Her only experience with guns had been with Jonick and Oren, when they’d rescued Kale and been shot by the police. She remembered the way they’d had to dig the bullets out .But she wasn’t a vampire.  If this man shot her, she wouldn’t be digging bullets out, rather she’d be bleeding on the floor.

Some of the bystanders whimpered, but mostly they dodged and darted out of the way. Several employees tried to reassure them that everything was fine and begged that they remain calm for the good of all, but Katelina doubted the they were that stupid. When someone pulled a gun things were definitely not fine.

She made her way to the exit where one of the guards quickly opened the door and stepped aside. The man with the gun motioned her inside, and she found herself in a paneled corridor lined in doors and a shiny water cooler. She waited until the door shut behind them and then she grabbed the tank of the water cooler like a weapon and swung.

 

 

Unedited Snippet Eight from Book Five

A ferry trip….

Okay, so it’s November and the book is not done. I lost a lot of time to unexpected house hunting and all the research that goes with an out of state move. However, due to some family issues, I think we’ll be putting any move on hold for awhile, so hopefully I can get this sucker finished!

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

Dinner was buffet style, again, though it had more sea food. Not that she liked sea food. She piled her plate with rice and vegetables and steered clear of anything that had eyes. She didn’t like the idea of her dinner staring back.

A sightseeing couple joined them at their table and chatted. Katelina nodded politely and tried to carry a conversation, but she had nothing to say. She hadn’t seen any of the landmarks they mentioned, she didn’t have a particular itinerary for Japan, and she knew nothing about foreign travel.  She couldn’t even talk about her “normal” life, or introduce Kai. What excuse would a woman in her mid-twenties have for traveling with a teenage boy? And Kai was no help. He ate mutely, attention on his plate, as if no one else existed. Luckily, the couple didn’t seem to notice anything amiss, or if they did they were too polite to comment.

What happens on the ferry, stays on the ferry. Right.

They invited Katelina and Kai to the on board nightclub, but she declined politely by feigning exhaustion. The pair left with a cheerful, “Maybe we’ll see you tomorrow!” and Katelina heaved a sigh of relief.

As she trudged back to the cabin, she felt a certain melancholy. Incidents like dinner reminded her how removed she was from real life. The sightseers’ trip to Russia involved trains, cameras, sunlight, market places and famous monuments. Hers had been a flying walk in the dark, a hotel, a seedy house to get fake papers, and an evening commuter train, all while waiting for Malick or his henchmen to appear and kill them, or for The Guild to send someone to intercept them and send them back to the U.S.

Fun, fun.

 

Unedited Snippet Seven from Book Five

Time for some fun in the bathtub!

I am going to be virtually nonexistent during October working on book 5.  I’ve set my email to autoreply and, except for two days a week, I have sworn off my Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, and even my email. If you contact me via these channels and I don’t answer immediately, that’s why.

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

By the time she finished her meal, the sun was down and when she returned to the room she found Jorick soaking in the bathtub.

“Shopping or food?” he asked.

She leaned against the bathroom doorframe. “Food. How did you know?”

“You took the credit card. You know that The Guild is keeping track of the purchases made on it.”

She hadn’t, but it was too late to worry now. “They probably know where we are already. I bet the pilots told them.”

“I know. We discussed killing them, but your friend thought they’d be more useful alive.” Katelina gaped at Jorick’s disregard for human life and he shrugged. “Sometimes it’s necessary. You wouldn’t have complained if I’d killed that whisperer a few days ago.”

He was right, but she didn’t want to acknowledge the truth, so she changed the subject. “Will they come after us?”

“The Guild?” he asked and she nodded. “They might contact the Russian Guild, or whatever they call it, but I doubt their Executioners could get here in time. It’s a big country.”

His certainty comforted her, and she wandered in to perch on the edge of the tub. She dipped her fingers into the warm water and splashed it on his pale chest. When he didn’t react, she did it again.

“If you want to play in the water then take off your clothes and climb in.”

The suggestion tinted her cheeks pink. “You know I have that naked issue…”

His tone turned suggestive. “It’s time you got over it, don’t you think?”

The knock on the door stopped her from answering. “I better see who it is.” She planted a kiss on his lips and made to move away, but he pulled her into the bathtub with a splash and a shriek.

Something slammed into the door, and she realized what it was just as the panicked voice sounded, “Are you all-”

The words died and she looked to see Verchiel and Cyprus in the bathroom doorway. They blinked at the scene and then Verchiel burst into laughter. “We thought someone was trying to kill you!”

Katelina crossed her arms over her wet, clingy shirt and gave them a wan smile. Jorick glared over the top of her head. “And what gave you that impression?”

“The scream,” Cyprus said icily. “We’re going to feed, but you’re obviously busy.”

He strode away and Verchiel leaned his hip against the door, still smirking. “I hate to say this, but you’re doing it wrong. You’re supposed to take your clothes off first.”

She threw the bar of soap at him, but he disappeared before it could find its mark.

Unedited Snippet Six from Book Five

Verchiel is being bad again…

I am going to be virtually nonexistent during October working on book 5.  I’ve set my email to autoreply and, except for two days a week, I have sworn off my Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, and even my email. If you contact me via these channels and I don’t answer immediately, that’s why.

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

Katelina squinted as the threesome drew closer, and then she recognized them. It was – “Sorino? What’s he doing here?”

The tall thin vampire was dressed in a heavy fur coat and a ridiculous fur hat. Behind him trudged Kai. In a bright coat and scarf, without his leash, he looked like a normal person, unlike the third member of their party. Katelina recognized the dark skinned, dreadlocked vampire as one of Sorino’s fellow treasure hunters. Lurid, she thought he was called. Trailing the winter costumed Sorino, he looked ridiculous in a red satin shirt and no coat.

“Of all the cities in all the world…” Sorino stopped before them and a cold smile stretched across his face. “And you have the human again. Wherever is her master this time?”

Verchiel grinned and threw an arm around her. “We ran away. Poor Kately just couldn’t resist my charms any longer.”

She jerked away from him and snapped through chattering teeth, “Stop that!”

Verchiel nodded towards the hotel. “Are you staying here?” Sorino nodded, and the redhead added, “I should get Kately inside before she freezes. Won’t do if she has pneumonia on our honeymoon.”

“I’m not on a honeymoon with you!” She smacked him in the shoulder, but it hurt her cold hand more than it hurt him.

“Serves you right! Now come on, unless you want me to carry you over the threshold?”

 

Unedited Snippet Five from Book Five

While some could argue there is a spoiler in today’s excerpt, I think the book’s title has already given it away 😉

I am going to be virtually nonexistent during October working on book 5.  I’ve set my email to autoreply and, except for two days a week, I have sworn off my Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, and even my email. If you contact me via these channels and I don’t answer immediately, that’s why.

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

Jorick’s face tightened stubbornly and Katelina snapped, “For God’s sake, Jorick, what is Malick after? Just tell us already!”

“Fine!” His voice dropped so low that she had to strain to hear him. “He’s after the heart of the raven.”

Verchiel choked and Katelina stared, incredulous. “But that’s was just a legend!” She looked to the redhead for help. “Right?”

Neil gave a soft cough. “I, uh, don’t want to interrupt but what is the heart of the raven?”

Jorick groaned with impatience, and Verchiel shot upright. “Oh! Let me!” He swiveled towards the uncomfortable guard. “There’s an old legend. Way back in the beginning there was Adam and Eve and Lilith and Samael. Samael and Lilith got into a fight – no wait, first they got turned into vampires-”

“Schwachsinnige,” Sadihra muttered and rolled her eyes. “I’ll tell it. In the beginning God created Adam and Eve, and Samael and Lilith. Samael loved Lilith, but she was in love with Adam, who loved Eve. Samael asked the serpent for help, and the serpent tried to convince Lilith to love her husband. After that, everything was good, so the serpent tried to butt into Adam and Eve’s relationship. When they ignored him, he got angry and as revenge he convinced Samael that Eve was the better woman, and helped Samael seduce her. Lilith found them and in her fury she went to Adam and coupled with him while he slept.”

“What a way to wake up!” Verchiel interjected with a waggle of his eyebrows.

Sadihra gave him a dark look and went on. “Adam woke up, horrified, and then God appeared and threw them all out of Eden. The serpent was really Lucifer in disguise, and since he was jealous of man, he was happy to see them punished. He rewarded Samael and Lilith by giving them immortality and the ability to transform into beasts; she a raven and he a bat. When God saw this, he struck them barren and cursed them to walk forever in darkness, drinking blood, and shunned by goodness.”

Verchiel coughed loudly and she talked over the top of him. “Eventually Lilith struck out on her own and wandered the world, turning vampires. Samael made only three other wives, and when he found out how free Lilith was with their gift, he hunted her down. They fought and he cut out her heart. When he saw what he had done, he was so filled with remorse that he couldn’t destroy it, so he kept it; an eternal token of the wife he loved the most.”

Katelina had heard the story before, though with less detail. It usually ended with “It’s just a legend”, only now… “So is it real or not, Jorick?”

All eyes moved to Jorick and he tapped his fingers on the arm of the chair “Let’s just say that Malick had a shriveled heart he believed to be the heart of the raven.”

“How did Malick get something like that?” Neil asked.

Sadihra made a soft noise in her throat. “More importantly, how did he lose it and why did he come after you?”

Unedited Snippet Four from Book Five

Yesterday was sex, so let’s start some violence….

I am going to be virtually nonexistent during October working on book 5.  I’ve set my email to autoreply and, except for two days a week, I have sworn off my Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, and even my email. If you contact me via these channels and I don’t answer immediately, that’s why.

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

Wolf stepped forward. Clutched in his hand was something shiny that looked like a cross between a jagged sword and spear. He pointed it towards them and demanded, “What are you doing here? Go to the lower levels!”

An explosion made the room quiver. The giant chandeliers swayed and Katelina covered her ears against the noise. As the after effects faded, all eyes danced around in search of damage, but there was nothing. Katelina glanced to the top of the stairs where a puff of smoke drifted away.  Someone had blown through the secret room!

Katelina was suddenly lost in flashbacks of the attack on The Guild. Explosions, blood, fire, screams. Was Oren stupid enough to attack Munich?

Oren or not, Wolfe was right. They needed to get out of there! She retreated towards the elevators and the broad stairways that curved down. Jorick didn’t move with her. He stayed rooted to the spot, his spine straight and his eyes narrowed in defiant determination.

Then the sound started. A low thrumming that quickly rose to a screaming pitch. Katelina clamped her hands over her ears and bit back a cry. She knew the sound and knew its maker.

Unedited Snippet Three from Book Five – Adult Content

I am going to be virtually nonexistent during October working on book 5.  I’ve set my email to autoreply and, except for two days a week, I have sworn off my Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, and even my email. If you contact me via these channels and I don’t answer immediately, that’s why.

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited ADULT CONTENT snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

Something about his expression made alarm bells ring in her head. “What did they say?”

Jorick  met her eyes and gave her a tight smile. “I imagine the same as they said to you.” He caught her hand and traced her knuckles with his thumb.  “It’s over now, and Malick is their problem.”

“Is he?” The same sick fear she’d had since the attack welled up again, like chronic heartburn. Would Jorick really stand aside and let someone else hunt down his master?

“Yes. I have more important things to worry about.” His tone turned teasing as he nuzzled her ear. “Like trying to make sure you don’t accidentally kill yourself. That takes a lot of effort.”

A sarcastic reply rose to her lips, but he drowned it with a burning kiss. She held out for a moment, just to show him she had some control, and then relented. Her body softened against his. She parted her lips to give him better access, and his tongue swept into her mouth. It tasted hot and vaguely coppery, like a sun warmed penny.  She wrapped her arms around his neck and pulled him closer, plunging his tongue deeper.

A soft moan escaped her lips and she arched into him. Her breasts flattened out against his hard chest. He tangled his fingers in her long golden hair and his other hand played up and down her side, teasing her through her clothes. Memories of  Jorick’s trepidation disappeared with his touch. There was only the two of them, limbs tangled and hot tongues parrying. No one else mattered

She wanted his hands on her skin, and broke the kiss to peel off her sweater. She started to pull him to her again, but he resisted. A question hung in her eyes and was answered when he unfastened her bra. He slid the lacy straps down over her arms and threw the undergarment to the floor. Her breasts hung heavy and naked, the nipples hardening with exposure and desire and he cupped them in his smooth hands. His thumb traced invisible patterns over the firm curves, and then dropped away so his tongue could take over.

Unedited Snippet Two from Book Five & Meter Link

First, since there was so much interest, here is the link where I got the meter from – http://www.writertopia.com/toolbox/meters. They have two styles. the bigger one is cooler but won’t fit on this layout 😦

I am going to be virtually nonexistent during October working on book 5.  I’ve set my email to autoreply and, except for two days a week, I have sworn off my Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, and even my email. If you contact me via these channels and I don’t answer immediately, that’s why.

In the meantime, please enjoy a random, unedited snippet from Heart of the Raven:

CONTAINS SPOILERS for Ashes of Deceit. If you haven’t read that book yet, then read at your own risk.

“Good night, little one. Sweet dreams.”

Katelina mumbled the endearment back, but she had no intention of sleeping.

She was the only one.

If vampires snored, the din (in the plane) would have been deafening, but they didn’t. They slept as silent as the dead while Katelina sat rigid in her seat and prayed over and over not to crash. After an hour, her eyes were heavy and her bladder was insistent, so she risked a trip to the bathroom.

As Jorick guessed, it was towards the back of the cabin behind a polished door. Though more luxurious than a normal airplane toilet, it was still tiny, and she hurried.

She exited to find Verchiel sitting up on the couch, a magazine in his hands. She moved past him and he commented, “Still awake? After the big exciting day you had, I’m surprised you haven’t passed out.  Not to mention all that glaring at me. That has to take a lot of energy.”

“Shouldn’t you be asleep?” she snapped back.

He lowered the magazine and shrugged. “Unlike you, I can always have an extra big snack and –boom- I’m refreshed. But it’s nice to know you worry.”

“I’m not worried. I just don’t want you irritating me.”

“You tell yourself that if it makes you feel better.” He stretched and yawned. “So what happened with that whisperer, anyway?”

She wrapped her arms around herself and shuddered. “I don’t want to talk about it, least of all with you!”

“You’re really determined to play this mad card, huh? All right, suit yourself. But when you get tired of it, let me know.” He gave her a wink and picked up his magazine. “I think I’ll finish this article then take a nap.”

She had nothing to say, so she strode to her seat and buckled herself in.

  • Tales of the Executioners

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    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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