Archive for May, 2017


I have to start with any apology for missing my regular blog post last week.  Work has been really busy, but mostly it was sick family that made me miss last weekend’s post.  Now that that is resolved (at least for the moment), things are closer to normal.  As close as close as things will ever be, I suppose.

( Photo credit: Foter.com )

So this weekend is much more relaxing than last, even with the household chores that always need to be done.  The big things are done now, and tomorrow will be for the smaller ones, and for writing, which makes me very happy.  I’ve also been re-watching Hell on Wheels, which I loved.  The characters and storytelling were terrific, and I still absolutely hate the Swede.  I still can’t decide if he’s more crazy or evil, but he’s awful either way. And Cullen Bohannon is still a great hero, even if he doesn’t want to be.  Even though I know how all of this turns out, I’ll still keep watching.  There are parts I had forgotten, characters whose contributions to the story that are important for Cullen, and for the final outcome.  Plus Cullen is yummy, right?  If you haven’t watched it and you have any interest in the old west or how the U.S. came to be, you should check it out.

And I am going to get some rest before I  spend most of tomorrow writing.  So before I head off to dream-land, I have a little story snippet from Hunting Medusa for you.

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Kallan wiped his sweaty hand down his jeans, hoping the shriek of the Medusa’s alarm shutting off hadn’t wakened her. He didn’t want her prepared for an attack. He’d prefer to kill her quickly and get the hell out. He could be back in Baltimore by supper tomorrow with the amulet in hand for Uncle Ari to destroy, ending the protective spell for the rest of the Medusa’s descendants.
He touched the doorknob, felt the locks disengage beneath his hand, then turned the handle and swung the door wide.
Silence greeted him, and he took that as a good sign. No creaking came from upstairs, as there would be if she’d wakened. Good. Nevertheless, he stepped inside cautiously, listening hard. He took another step after a few heartbeats, trying to remember just where the kitchen table and chairs stood from his limited view the day before.
He made it past the furniture and paused to listen again. Still nothing. He frowned. With the power off, the house was too quiet. Surely the sudden and complete silence would wake her, even if she hadn’t heard the brief noise of the alarm shutting down. He slid one foot forward on the smooth wooden floor, and suddenly she was there. Fiery pain shot up his left arm. He grunted, realized she’d stabbed him deeply. He swung his other hand up, managing to hit her on the side of the head.

She cried out but didn’t go down, swinging her blade again. He caught her wrist, but she managed to get another slice to his already-injured forearm before he yanked her arm behind her.
Her booted foot connected with his knee—hard—and he bit back a string of curses at the pain, but didn’t let her go. Why wasn’t she barefoot? If she’d been sleeping, she should be barefoot. His left arm was nearly useless, blood pumping steadily from his wounds, so he crowded her up against the nearest surface. The refrigerator. He shoved hard, hearing her moan when he twisted her arm a little more.
Her blade hit the floor between them. She kicked backward again, and her foot hit his knee from the other side this time.
“Dammit,” he muttered, flattening her between his body and the appliance’s cool metal surface. His arm burned, warm blood dripping from his fingers.
“Get off me, you murdering bastard,” she said, her words slurred slightly from her face being mashed into the refrigerator.
“Well now, that’s not very nice. Especially since I’ve never murdered anyone. Yet,” he added darkly, tightening his grip on her wrist. The bones in her arm were fragile and he was fully aware he could crush them, render her arm as useless as she had his. But he didn’t. He wasn’t Stavros.
“You’re not going to start with me, either, Harvester.”
Mouthy. He grinned at the back of her head. Even trapped and defenseless as she was now, she didn’t stop fighting, even verbally. He had to work to keep from laughing as she continued to threaten him. No one had warned him the Medusa would be talkative. Or soft, he realized when her bottom shifted back into his groin. He concentrated on breathing evenly when his nerve endings all came to life. He’d never imagined he might be aroused by the Medusa.

“Wh-what are you doing?” she asked suddenly.
Kallan realized he wasn’t moving—or most of him wasn’t. He shut his eyes for a second, clenching his jaw. Her ass now cushioned his throbbing erection.
“Hey!” She shrank closer to the fridge, making a soft sound when the move forced her arm higher behind her.
He shifted, easing her wrist a little lower. This wasn’t going at all as he’d imagined it. “Stop moving.” He forced himself to unclench his jaw.
“If you think I’m going to make it easy for you to kill me, Harvester, you have another thing coming.” She didn’t stop wriggling.
Growling, he flattened her completely between his body and the refrigerator again.

She froze, and he could feel her pulse beating crazily in the wrist he still held. Fear? He imagined that was one cause. Anger too, probably.
He doubted she was having the same unexpected reaction to him that he was to her.
Not that it was a bad thing that she wasn’t suddenly aroused, too.
He just needed to stop thinking about it.
Concentrate on the task at hand.
Kill the Medusa.
Feel how soft her ass was against him. If he shifted his hips just a little—
No. He growled again, and she shifted, just as he’d imagined so her softness cradled him even more.
“Get off, Harvester,” she whispered.
“Stop calling me that.” He hated hearing it from her lips for some reason. Yes, it was what his name meant. It was what he was destined to do. But the contempt in her tone… He didn’t like it at all.
As though the Medusa had room to be contemptuous of him.

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Here’s hoping for a great week for everyone!

 

 

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Sounds like the perfect day to stay inside and read, right?  That’s the sort of day we’re having here, grey skies and random showers, plus it’s cool enough to actually feel like spring outside.

( Photo credit: taiyofj via Foter.com / CC BY  )

So what have I been doing?  Writing, and household chores.  I should be figuring out supper, but I’ll wing it.  I have chicken breasts and sausage both defrosting, so I’ll just make whichever appeals most when it’s time, and make the other tomorrow.  My mind is too full of story today, deliberately.  Yesterday was a difficult day, so I made up my mind that today had to be better, and the best way for me to do that is to immerse myself in a story, whether it’s one I’m writing, or a great book I’m reading.

So I’m working on my shifter today.  Anton is not a bad boy like some of his cousins, but he is definitely wounded and in control.  Until he takes a mate he hadn’t planned on.  Then he finds out being in control isn’t as easy as he’s always believed.  I’m really enjoying his story, especially since I hadn’t intended to write one for him when I started the shifter stories.  He was just a background character in the first story.  But then he kept coming back in the next two, and I finally realized he needed a mate to shake up his world, that he deserved a mate who would heal his wounds.  So he’s got one, he just didn’t know what to do with her once he mated her.  Silly tiger.  So I think I’ll share a little snippet of his story with you today.

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Anton still watched her when she glanced over again, and she smiled a little. “What?” he asked.

 
“I was thinking about that kiss earlier.”

 
He didn’t reply, but she noted the way his eyes darkened.

 
“Would you kiss me again?”

 
He frowned, and she braced herself for a refusal. “Why?”

 
She blinked, then frowned, too. “Because I liked it. Because it’s been a long time since a man kissed me. Never mind.” She shoved to her feet, but he caught her wrist. She gave him a glare.

 
“Sit down, Laney,” he said firmly.

 
She considered the grasp he had on her arm–tight but not painful. If she pulled, she thought he’d let her go. Instead, she sat on the edge of the sofa, not looking at him.

 

He released her arm and moved forward to the edge of the cushions, too, his leg brushing hers. “You don’t owe me anything, Laney,” he said gruffly.

 
Irritation flared, and she shot to her feet again, to glare at him. “You are a moron.” It escaped before she’d formulated anything besides the annoyance. She bit her lip, realizing what she’d said. Gods.

 
To her surprise, he smiled, just a little. “Not the first time I’ve heard that.” He reached out and touched her balled-up fist at her side. “I just meant you didn’t need to–”

 
“Offer sexual favors in exchange for saving me?” she asked, chagrined.

 
“Yes. I didn’t mean that I didn’t enjoy the kiss.” His fingertips stroked the back of her hand from knuckle to wrist, and he met her gaze. “But I did mean it when I said I wasn’t looking for a relationship.”

 

“So did I.” She made her fingers uncurl, then sucked in a little breath when he laced his fingers through hers.

 
“Sit down again, Laney,” he said softly.

 
She swallowed, searching his face for a moment, and then eased onto the sofa once more.

 
He lifted their joined hands and brushed his lips along her knuckles. Warmth spread over her skin, and she took a shallow breath. “Anytime you say stop, I’ll stop.” He held her gaze, waiting.

 
She nodded. She trusted him, she realized. That hadn’t happened in a long time either. She set her free hand on the edge of the cushion and curled her fingers into it to steady herself. Then leaned toward Anton.

 
He brushed his lips against hers, just a light caress. Warm, a tease. He did it again, a whisper-light kiss.

 
Laney wanted more. She tipped her chin up when he didn’t come back right away, and opened her eyes.

 
He watched her, from only inches away, his green eyes focused on her.

 
“Kiss me,” she whispered.

 
One corner of his mouth twitched. “No patience,” he teased gruffly.

 
She remembered the kiss earlier and shook her head.

 
He released her hand and brushed her hair away from the side of her face. “Haven’t you heard anticipation is a good thing?” His fingers slipped down from her cheek to her jaw.

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Now I’m going to figure out what’s for dinner and then get back to Anton and Laney, see what kind of trouble I can get them into.  Hope you all have a great week!

 

 

I think summer is here already.  We had those few beautiful days, and suddenly the past three have been hot and muggy.  I’m disappointed.  I shouldn’t be, because we haven’t had too many good springs here in recent years.  Most of the time now, we get a few weeks of cool, early-spring weather, and then summer arrives with the heat and humidity.  One of these years, I’ll get a really great spring again.  Maybe next year, after a decent winter.

 

(  Photo credit: Sorin Mutu via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA )

But the flowers are blooming, which I like (and the weeds are sprouting, which I don’t like), so I’ll just look at the positive parts for now.  One more positive is I get to watch beautiful horses racing next weekend.  I’ll get the household chores in first, and I won’t drink a mint julep, but I’ll find something summery to drink with it.

And I have a three-day weekend this week, which means extra writing time, and that is definitely a positive.  I actually got a lot of writing done last week, even though the day-job has been crazy-busy.  I got a lot of new pages written in the mornings and on my lunch breaks.  I’m aiming for a decent night’s sleep tonight, because the next two days will be busy, before a little lull, but I still want more new pages.

I have a quick snippet of story from Hunting Medudsa to share with you, too…

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“You need to know I’ll die before I let him kill you,” he said, startling her.
Andi blinked, and he turned his head toward her, his green eyes as hard as his jaw. Her heart jumped up into her throat. Gods, he was serious. A hot splatter of stew hit the back of her hand, and she jerked her spoon away from the small pot to turn the burner off, forcing herself to look away from him.
“Maybe you should be practical,” she started.
“Maybe you should think about trusting me a little,” he cut in, swinging around to fully face her.
The front view was as distracting as the back, she realized, absently noting the crisp dark hair spattered over his wide, muscular chest and narrowing onto his flat belly, to that unfastened button…
She pulled her gaze back to his face when he stepped away from the cave opening.

“I got you safely away before Stavros could kill you. I just spent the last two days taking care of you.” His nostrils flared. “I don’t know how you’ve managed by yourself all these years.”
A lump pushed her heart down out of her throat, making her nose and eyes sting.
“If I haven’t earned a little trust after the last two days, I don’t see how you can ever trust anyone.”
That was low. She dropped her spoon into the pan and pushed to her feet. “That wasn’t very nice.”
“It doesn’t look like your family rushes to help you out every month.”
She couldn’t argue, as it was true, but that didn’t lessen the sting.
“So when did anyone take care of you last, Andrea? Besides me?”
“Not since I was thirteen,” she yelled. “Then it wasn’t so bad, until Annis died. Now I take care of myself.” Her vision blurred a little, and she blinked hard.
Kallan moved toward her, his mouth a flat line, his green eyes flaring sparks. “But you trust them anyway?”
“They’re my family.” It really was that simple. If she truly needed them, one of them would come.
“They’ve abandoned you to the Harvesters.” His shout echoed in the cavern.
To her horror, a tear slid down her cheek, but she didn’t wipe it away. “They need to be safe too,” she whispered.
“So the sacrifice of one isn’t a big deal if the rest are safe?” His tone was still rock-hard, though lower in volume.
Andi didn’t want to think about it that way. His view of the whole situation was so distorted.
Wasn’t it?
“As long as none of us get the amulet, it’s okay to lose the Medusa every once in a while?” He touched her cheek, wiping away the tear there.

Another fell, and she wasn’t sure if she was angrier at him or herself. Or her family.

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Now I’m going to go listen to some good music while I dive back into my tiger shifter story.  I hope you all have a really wonderful week!