Monday, June 27, 2022

Matesummer Monday: Truth and Lies

 


Soon I'll be unveiling the cover of book 3 in the Comet Lake series: Death Growl, which will be coming to you in late July/early August. In the meantime, I've been working on book 6, and thought I'd share a little snippet from it this morning. 


“Why does he hate you?”

The voice made Baz flinch and clench his fists, even as his cheeks heated up. The thought of someone witnessing what had just taken place was almost as humiliating as having his mate walk away and leave him unfulfilled. That it was Kale standing there made it so much worse.

“I betrayed him.”

“Why?”

Baz hoped Kale would stay where he was, leaning up against a tree at the edge of the clearing, but the universe had never cared what he wanted, thus, Kale shoved away from the tree and headed his way.

“Was better than the alternative,” Baz replied, turning away so he wouldn’t have to see his face up close again. Even in the pond, tied, bloody, and unconscious in the moonlight, he was beautiful. Baz didn’t want to see how much more so he was now that he was healthy. He’d damned himself the moment he’d promised Charlie he would bring their mate to him if he was ever lucky enough to find them. In honoring that, he’d hoped to earn some small measure of forgiveness. Another failure in a long string of them involving his mate.

“What could ever be worse than betraying a mate?” Kale asked.

Sounded like he was right beside him now. His voice smooth, melodic, Baz would have loved to sit and listen to him talk for hours, but he couldn’t stay close to the mate he couldn’t have. He couldn’t let a bond form between them. Not when it would put him at odds with Charlie and the vow he’d made.

“Prey you’ll never find out.”

Baz started walking then, head down, hands shoved in the pocket of his jacket, intent on returning to the shop and the multitude of projects that awaited him. He’d always loved working with wood, shaping it into something useful or even beautifully ornamental. Feeling it beneath his fingertips had a way of soothing his mind, the sandpaper rubbing over the grains like a harmony he could get lost in for days. Charlie had to know how badly it would suck for him when Charlie returned to the woodworking shop and Baz was forced to leave.

If only they could find a way to work together there if nowhere else. 


You can find the first two books of the Comet Lake Chronicles Here.

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Rainbow Snippet 6/25/22: A first look at Saint's Sinner

 Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, readers, and bloggers to gather once a week to share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!). 

Claiming Cody


In this group you’ll find anything from romance and historical fiction to mystery and YA. The common thread is that every story’s main character identifies as LGBTQ+. The snippets could range from zero flames to full-on sexytimes, anything goes content-wise. The only rule is snippets will be 6 sentences long–one for each color in the Pride flag.

I would invite everyone to please come check out the Rainbow Snippets group, click on a link, read and comment on the writing available and get involved yourselves in this awesome exercise. The link to the group can be found HERE.  

This week's Rainbow Snippet comes from Saint's Sinner, my current WIP and the book that will follow Claiming Cody in the Rollin' Jokers series. 


“You can’t promise that! You can’t promise he’ll be okay either!”

“No, but what I can promise is that whoever done this will be made to pay.”

“And that’s supposed to be comforting!”

“Did I say…”

Snarling, Saint cut Mark off by whipping a heavy glass ashtray at his head. Fucker didn’t even have the good graces to try and get out of the way. Would have been nice if he’d pretended it had come close enough to hit him, but Saint’s aim had always been shit when it came to throwing. Mark probably figured moving would be what got him hit. That or he just didn’t give a damn. He hadn’t flinched when glass and plaster exploded outward from the dent it put in the wall. Hadn’t even twitched when shards slip the flesh of his cheek and sent blood spilling down it.

“If this was Teddy, or god forbid, one of my nephews, you’d have destroyed half the town by now!”

“And you’d have been right there beside me.”

“Then why the fuck aren’t we out their doing it now?”

The casual way Mark reached up and brushed a hunk of glass glittered hair from his face took Saint to a whole other level of pissed off. “Because we’re older and supposed to be wiser at this point in our lives, and we both know the cops are itching to swarm this place and lock us under the jail.”




Wednesday, June 1, 2022

Manic Monday Metal Mania: A look at my upcoming Rocktoberfest novel Bleeding Dawn

 


Available for Pre-Order


Tripp knew he should have been prepared for the sight of Dez opening Zakk’s front door, but the moment it happened was so rattling that it sent all his carefully composed words spinning right out of his head. While he was still trying to regain his composure, Dez had the nerve to press a finger to his lips, and rather than move the fuck out of Tripp’s way, stepped out in the hallway with him, looking like he’d just crash-landed off the balcony of a Mardi Gras bash. 

There was a streak of…something, on the side of his neck, his jeans were being held up by his free hand, unzipped and unbuttoned, and his hair looked like he’d had an unfortunate battle with a light socket and lost.

“Must have been some party,” Tripp growled. “I guess that’s why Zakk hasn’t been answering his phone all god damned night.

“Naa,” Dez drawled, the fucker having the nerve to smirk at him. “He didn’t answer ‘cause you said shit you shouldn’t have, and he shoved the phone under a pillow and abandoned it there to die.”

“Look, not that I need to explain it to you, but I was pissed and frustrated beyond belief, and I took it out on him when he did nothing to deserve it.”

“You’re damn right he didn’t,” Dez shot back. “If you’re on a personal mission to alienate everyone in your life, I’d say you’re off to a good start. Dick. That’s from Winter, incidentally.”

“You’ve talked to him?”

“Not that it’s any of your business, but yeah, and he’s fine, in case you give a damn.”

“Who the fuck do you think….” Tripp growled.

“Someone who actually does give a damn!” Dez snarled back. “Maybe because I know what it’s like to have someone destroy my love for music, and let me tell you something, it’s a hard fucking thing to come back from. I’m still trying to fit the pieces back together. Some days I look at my guitar, and all I want is to pitch it out a seven-story window and never play another note!”

Okay, now that…he’d heard Dez play, many times over the years. The guy was a beast, a god damned legend in the making. He and Winter had gone head-to-head for best guitarist three times in their careers and as far as Tripp was concerned, it would have been more if Dez had ever stuck with a band for more than a year. To hear him say that about playing and have him ascribe it to his brother….

His first thought was that he needed to track Winter down and fix it, his second, was to wonder who the fuck Dez thought he was, to be lecturing him on shit after what Tripp had read while he’d been stuck at the Bismarck Airport.

“Maybe you should work your own shit out, before you stick your nose in someone else’s,” Tripp snapped as he jerked his phone out of his pocket and flipped through it, finding the article he was after and turning it so Dez could see.

Tripp knew what the headline said, the speculation about the woman draped all over Riley in the photos that accompanied it, including one where she was sitting in his lap, his arms around her as she looked to be kissing his neck.

Tripp waited for Dez to lose his shit with a sick sense of anticipation he wasn’t exactly proud of. He expected embarrassment, sputtered attempts at an explanation, not….snickering?

What the actual fuck?

When those snickers gave way to laughter and Dez using the wall to hold himself up, Tripp was certain he’d just fallen headlong into the Twilight Zone.

“What the fuck is so god damned funny this early in the day?” Riley grumbled as he stuck his head out in the hallway, took one look at Tripp and rolled his eyes. “Oh, you.”

Tapping Dez on the shoulder only got him to turn his laughter and the phone Riley’s way.

“What are you trying to do, laugh him off the doorstep?” Riley asked, taking the phone when Dez nearly dropped it and his pants.

“He thinks….you two…are seein’…each….other…” Dez choked out in between wheezes.

Riley’s giggles when he saw the photos were as unexpected as Dez’s reaction, only now he was hollering over his shoulder to Zakk, who sounded sleepy, drunk and grumpy as he came shambling to the doorway, looking every bit as rumpled as Dez and Riley did.

“Why ya gotta be so fuckin’ loud, bru?”

And there was the pretty little bun on the shitburger sandwich his day had turned into. Drunken fuck’ Zakk, who crashed into Riley and the door before spotting Tripp standing there and giving him a little wave.

“Can I talk to you?” Tripp pleaded, desperately hoping there was some shred of comprehension left in Zakk’s booze-soaked brain, or he’d have come all this way for nothing.

“You gotta see this!” Riley declared at the same time, thrusting the phone in front of Zakk’s face and blocking his view of the desperate, pleading look Tripp was shooting him. “He thinks I’m cheating on Dez…. with your sister!”


Monday, May 16, 2022

Manic Monday with a hint of maybe mates...a sneak peek at my new lion shifters

 



Remy answered the door bare-chested in just a pair of boxers. For the first time, Nathan noticed that the faint happy trail that ran between extremely well-defined abs was as pale as the white-gold hair that spilled over Remy’s shoulders. White lions were the rarest of their species, a mutation really. Nathan was painfully aware of the fact that some communities would take him in for that reason only, simply so they could boast that they had one. Here, Remy could expect to be treated the same as any other lion. Was that going to be a problem for him? Had he been expecting there to be preferential treatment only to lash out when he’d received none?

Those were definitely questions Nathan intended to ask before their conversation was over.

“Can I come in?”

“It’s your house.”

“Technically, it’s the communities house, but even if it belonged to me, it would still be the polite thing to do for me to ask to enter your room before presuming it was okay to do so.”

Remy shrugged at that, but he did step back out of the doorway. Nathan took it as an invitation to step inside the space and look around. Little had changed since they’d given the room to Remy two weeks before, though, it was nice to see that he’d unpacked the backpack he’d been staggering beneath the weight of when he’d arrived. A few little things, like the blue-green pendulum hanging in front of the window and a small photograph wedged into the corner of the mirror, gave a few personal touches.

Remy sat on the edge of the slightly rumpled bed, brushing his hand over the surface in an effort to smooth out the wrinkles. Nathan caught him glancing from them, to Nathan and back again, like he was embarrassed for Nathan to see the slightest imperfection. Or maybe it was fear. Was Remy scared that he would get in trouble if the littlest thing was out of place?

Nathan filed that thought away for later, along with the others, pulled out the desk chair and straddled it so they were nearly eye to eye. Even then, he could only hold Remy’s gaze for several seconds before Remy turned his attention towards studying the floor. The handbook lay there beside a battered paperback, the cover too creased and worn for Nathan to read what the title was.

“I hear you had a rough afternoon,” Nathan ventured.

Remy’s only response was a snort.

“It happens, you know. Things don’t go as planned and that’s okay. You just have to learn how to handle it when something goes wrong.”

“How am I supposed to handle it when I didn’t have any control over the disaster in the first place?”

“Perhaps. But you do have control over how you react to it, or at least, one would hope you would at your age.”

Remy shrugged, shoulders slumping as he traced a pattern on the floor with his big toe. “I paged through the handbook, but I didn’t see anything in the section on changing residence about if requests needed to be in writing or if I could just ask.

“You’re first mistake was in not reading it cover to cover. Leafing through won’t get you the answers you need to survive here.”

“Tired of just surviving,” Remy muttered.

Okay, that was a start, a good one as far as Nathan was concerned. It spoke to his hope that Remy wanted more than a place to live.

“How long has that been the only thing you’ve been focused on?” Nathan asked.

Another snort, but those pale golden-green eyes flickered upward for a moment, meeting his before once again looking away. “All my life.”

“What you’re looking for, a chance to know what real living is, you can find that here, if you give it a proper chance.”

“A proper….” Nathan glimpsed his eyes again, and the utter look of disbelief locked within them. “Can you just tell me if I have to make a written or a verbal request to move to a different household?”

Nathan schooled his features, refusing to let Remy see the disappointment he felt at hearing that.

“You can consider your request made, but that’s the easy part.”

“Okay.”

“There’s a community meeting on Friday, we’re planning to introduce you to everyone there. Hopefully, you’ll be able to explain the type of household you wish to live in, and with any luck, an offer will be made.”

“It’s that easy?”

“I wouldn’t call it easy. Our pride mates will want to know where you came from, the type of upbringing you’ve had, your skills and education level, and how you see yourself fitting into pride life here. You’ll also need to explain what went wrong in this house, as well as what you said to Ira and why you said it.”

A low roar rumbled through the room, Remy’s lion clearly not liking something Nathan said. “What went wrong was that he ruined something that I was trying to do for the house and the only one any of you is upset at is me! I didn’t ruin dinner. I was prepared to make something awesome!”

Nathan held up his hand as Remy started getting louder, the younger lion clearly understanding the symbol for what it was, a desire for him to settle back down. He’d come half up off the bed in his outrage, now, he settled back down on the comforter, swiping at the wrinkles once more.

“Regardless of your intentions, name-calling isn’t tolerated here,” Nathan explained. “Ira made an honest mistake in trying to do something kind, you were simply cruel for cruelties sake. Now, from here until you either find that new placement you’d like or learn to work within the rules of this home, you will not be doing the cooking, Ira will. Pike is going to teach him, as you should have offered to do when you saw him struggling.”

“There was no reason for him to struggle with my task!” Remy snapped. “I set everything up so I could put the dish together and he came along and hacked it to shit!”

“And just who made it your task?” Nathan asked, letting a hint of his own lion’s rumbling voice echo through the room.

He watched in silent satisfaction as Remy’s mouth dropped open and he sat staring for several seconds before snapping it shut, his fair skin flushing as he failed to produce an answer.

“Now, there’s no guarantee you’ll be invited into another home,” Nathan said with the hope that Remy was listening to him and not just letting his words wash over him. “If that’s the case, you’ll have a decision to make.  Remain in our home or leave the community.”

“Can’t I just camp out in the woods or something?”

Nathan shook his head, taking note of the hint of desperation in Remy’s voice. Now might finally be the time to ask what it was he’d been running away from.

“We don’t allow that here. It gives cubs the wrong impression about society and it breeds rogues,” Nathan explained. “If that’s the kind of life you want, you’ll have to leave here to find it. I’ll caution you now that few prides would allow you to live on the fringes that way. You may want to research before you arrive on another community’s doorstep.”

He sighed heavily and ran a hand through his hair. “Didn’t research to get here.”

“Okay, so how did you find us?”

Remy was fidgeting again, hand repeatedly brushing over the comforter, even though he’d already smoothed the wrinkles out. “Been hitchin’ for a couple days with no destination in mind, I just knew I couldn’t keep living with my old man and his newest woman. Was tired of…I was just tired.”

“No, you headed down that road, you need to finish. Talk to me, and maybe we can figure out how to get you what you need.”

Remy rubbed the back of his neck, shooting Nathan a look that was part sad and one part exhausted. “Pike made it pretty clear he doesn’t like me, so I don’t see why it matters what I need.”

“It matters to me, so if it’s all the same to you, I’m going to sit right here until you talk to me.”

As if to drive his point home, Nathan crossed his arms over the back of the chair and laid his head on it, fixing Remy with a look he hoped would convey his intent to remain indefinitely.


You can check out my snake shifters here.


Wolf shifters here.

And Ferret shifters here.



Saturday, April 23, 2022

Rainbow Snippet: 4/23/22

   Rainbow Snippets is a group for LGBTQ+ authors, readers, and bloggers to gather once a week to share six sentences from a work of fiction–a WIP or a finished work or even a 6-sentence book recommendation (no spoilers please!).


Claiming Cody


In this group you’ll find anything from romance and historical fiction to mystery and YA. The common thread is that every story’s main character identifies as LGBTQ+. The snippets could range from zero flames to full-on sexytimes, anything goes content-wise. The only rule is snippets will be 6 sentences long–one for each color in the Pride flag.

I would invite everyone to please come check out the Rainbow Snippets group, click on a link, read and comment on the writing available and get involved yourselves in this awesome exercise. The link to the group can be found HERE.  

This week's Rainbow Snippet comes from Saint's Sinner, my current WIP and the book that will follow Claiming Cody in the Rollin' Jokers series. 

“Was a family thing,” Night blurted. “My uncle was pissed and when he gets riled up my cousins aren’t far behind.”

Maybe he was imagining it, but suddenly, the pair looked less menacing and Saint, no, he wasn’t imagining the mixed look of pissed off and caring swirling in Saint’s eyes.

“Your uncle have your kutte?” Mark asked point-blank.

“I….it’s hanging upside down in his bar, or at least, that’s what my brother told me they were doing with it when he came out to the shed to cut me down.”

“Cut you….” Saint’s words trailed off as he cast a quick glance at his brother. Night wished he could communicate with his own sibling without words or hand signals.

Mark stuck two fingers in his mouth and let out the kind of piercing whistle that made outsiders alternately duck and look up at the sky, waiting for the bombs to fall.

“You guys pack this mess up and take it to the rec room,” Mark instructed. “I want to see at least three different ideas spelled out before the end of the night, so don’t you fucks get distracted playing pool in there.”

Friday, April 22, 2022

Flirtatious Friday: Derrick and Moon in an almost 4/20 moment

 


Available on Amazon


“Come on, you’re gonna catch a chill sitting here.”

“I’m not going back in there.”

“Did I say anything about you going back to the bar?”

“No.”

“Alright then. We gotta go to the parking lot though. My truck’s over there.”

“Hate your truck.”

“No you don’t, you hate that you’re too short to get in it on your own.”

Huffing, Moon tried to blow a lock of hair off his nose only to have it fall over his eye instead. Go figure. “Same difference.”

“I promise to be gentler when I boost you up this time. Wouldn’t do to save you from getting smeared all over the road only to smack your head off the steering wheel and give you another concussion.”

“Least you didn’t break my nose.”

“Hey, I apologized for that too. Who knew you were so light?”

“You couldn’t take one look at me and tell?” Moon squeaked as Derrick ‘helped’ him up by nearly yanking his arm out of the socket. “Oh my god, you’re a menace, you know that?”


###


As they bounced along the pothole-filled road, Moon was grateful that Derrick had left the radio off, letting the hiss of the heater vent be the only sound between them. “Got anything to smoke?”

“Always.”

“Then that’s where we should go.”

“I’ll smoke you up on two conditions.”

“Can’t you just smoke me up ‘cause I’ve had a shit night?”

“That would be too easy.”

Sighing heavily, Moon cast a sidelong glance at him. “Could use easy tonight.”

“Well, I can promise that I’ll be as easy as you want me to be.”

Groaning. Moon buried his face in his hands. If there was one thing he could count on from Derrick, besides his never-ending supply of weed, it was his willingness to help Moon fuck away whatever he happened to be feeling.

Forcing a smile, Moon slid his hand up Derrick’s thigh. “Guess it’s not just tequila that makes the clothes fall off.”


###


“Still got any of that Purple Punch laying around?”

“Smoked the last of it two nights ago, but I’ve got Bubba and Romulan, oh and a little bit of Pink left.”

“I’ll go with Bubba.”

“Should I be jealous?”

“You know it.”

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Warrior Wednesday: Waiting rooms suck AKA don't mess with Mama Kat!

 


“Maybe we should have let Doc. B treat him. It might have been easier than waiting around here for someone to give us some answers!”

Grimacing, Bellamy leaned away, stuck a finger in his ear, and wiggled it around until the ringing stopped. A brief bout of silence was quickly replaced with the hum of activity again. They had to be used to freaked out family members losing their shit in the waiting room.

“Couldn’t,” Bellamy said. “Mark gave the order for him to come here and for me to ride with him.”

“In that case, you had no choice.”

“No shit. Want another cup of coffee?” Bellamy asked.

“No, and I don’t want you going to get one either, and getting yourself thrown out of here when you get caught trying to sneak into his cubicle again.”

Was a good thing Teddy didn’t speak French or the words snarled from his lips might have offended him. Wasn’t Teddy’s fault Cody was better guarded than the president at this moment. There was no cause to take his frustrations out on him, not when Teddy was just as aggravated and pissed off. He wasn’t the only one, either. Movement out of the corner of his eye clued him in that shit was about to go sideways unless he could head off Kat before she reached the head nurse and do god only knew what to her.

“Get out of the way, Bellamy,” Kat hissed when Bellamy slid in between them right before Kat managed to snatch the bitch by the hair. Her answer to everything so far had been that they would have to wait for the results of this test or that one to come back while keeping them from laying eyes on Cody.

“I can’t, Ma’am, sorry,” Bellamy replied, giving his best awe, shucks, I’m sorry, didn’t mean anything by it look.

“Did you just ma’am me?”

“He did, I heard it,” Teddy said, having caught up to them. “You really shouldn’t have done that.”

The look Teddy shot him, and the wink, let him know the man knew exactly what Bellamy was hoping to prevent.

“You didn’t leave me much choice. I couldn’t let you pick up an attempted murder charge when you’re the only one with access to the bail fund,” Bellamy pointed out. “Of course, if Nurse Hathaway doesn’t let us see Cody soon, I’m just going to stand back and record you snatching the wig off her and beating her senseless with it.”

For a moment, he was afraid he’d gone too far, then Teddy snickered, and Kat doubled over, one hand on Bellamy’s shoulder as she laughed until she was sniffling. He had to hand it to her, she was tough as sin, just like his mom. Not a single tear fell, they just shimmered as she breathed, and no doubt did a mental tally of that bail fund to see if she could do a little nurse bashing.

“Thank you,” she said as she straightened her flannel, the nurse shooting them all the evil eye from the other side of the admit desk where she’d retreated, again. “I hate this. When he was a kid and he got hurt, they always let me sit with him, now suddenly, just because a few too many years have passed they decide that I should sit out here and wonder what the hell is going on with him. I’m his fuckin’ mother, I should already know!”

I love Rock n’ Roll blared through her phone, abruptly cut off by her snarled ‘what’ when she answered it.

Bellamy watched her press her free hand to her head, take a deep breath and pinch the bridge of her nose while her face turned an unnatural combination of cupid-pink and devil-red.

“Okay, you know what, I’m done dicking around with this. I’m going back down to the jail to get my husband and the rest of our family out. You can either meet me there and be prepared to bond them out, or you can hide out in your office and wait for us to find you there. You’re choice.”

She hung up then, hugged Teddy, squeezed Bellamy’s arm, and headed for the door.

“When I get back here, you better have an update on my son!” she snarled as she stalked past the nurse’s station.


Available on Amazon!