It's a good thing we love characters...Right?
Okay, on with it, shall we?
Thank you for hosting me today, Nikki, though the stage has actually been commandeered by Dara MacKechnie, the heroine from Blood Rage.
::weak voice, off camera:: Please don’t call me a heroine.
But you are, Dara.
So you say. I disagree.
Are you feeling all right?
::chubby redhead staggers on stage, looking a bit green around the gills:: So sorry I’m late. I, er, let’s just say I’m not at my best just before a speaking engagement.
After all the appearances you’ve made on behalf of the Bureau, how is it possible you still get stage fright?
I hate being in the public eye. God only knows what I might do to embarrass myself. I’m not exactly the most graceful or svelte out there.
I’m sure someone doesn’t feel that way.
True. Anyway, I’m better now. What would you like me to talk about?
Can you tell the audience about what the world’s like where you come from and how it grew apart from our own?
Well, about ninety years ago, my adopted daughter, Sheridan, got tired of pretending to be something she’s not. She was only a vampire for a few years, but of course we’d moved at least twice in her life to conceal the fact that I didn’t age. I’d been doing it for more than a century by then, so didn’t think much of it. But, she pushed the issue and blabbed the notion to a friend of mine, Chris Javert, and, well, let’s just say it took a few years of fast talking, both with the Great Council of Vampires and with the other non-human species, but eventually we orchestrated what is now known as The Great Awakening. It came at a time, in my opinion, the humans needed a distraction, as we make our presence known in ’29, right after the markets crashed.
So there are other non-humans? Do you get along?
::she snorts:: According to the laws we do. What happens behind the scenes is a different matter. There will probably always be inter-species squabbling, but until recently the worst seemed to be past. Now, however…well, we’ll have to see whether we can spin this into avoiding an all-out war.
As to your first question, there are four: vampires, shifters, mage-born, and dhampier. Some would argue that the demons are their own breed, but as they are not native to this world (or yours), they aren’t accorded citizenship rights in any country. At least in the West (as opposed to the Middle East), non-humans share the same rights and responsibilities as the humans. If you’re not human, we don’t recommend living in the Middle East. Asia’s not much friendlier, but at least you’re not subject to a lynching or other summary execution there if you’re caught.
I take it all is not well in your world?
Not exactly. I just learned about them, but apparently there’s a group calling themselves the Aristocrats who have been stirring up a bit of trouble. Until two weeks ago, the Circle (they lead the Great Council) managed to keep things from the public eye. Unfortunately, the Aristocrats’ leader, the dream-walker Ares, decided he wasn’t happy being kept from notice and launched an all-out assault. Unfortunately, ever body that turns up with the signature of the Aristocrats has also been drained, so guess who the humans (and other non-humans) are blaming?
Us, of course. Vampires, or the Blood as we prefer to be called, have never been exactly the preferred non-humans. Mage-born are the preferred other race, simply because they’re the most, for lack of a better term, human. They don’t necessarily show any traits that reveal themselves as not human. Dhampires are hybrids, they need blood to survive and live about 500 years, but otherwise they’re mortal. Shifters, well, they’re frequently fuzzy and tend to get cranky around the full moon. Vampires, on the other hand, are considered the epitome of “not human”. We only need blood to live.
Ares appears to be trying to start a war and get all the blame slung on us. Unfortunately it looks like he’s recruited some of the Blood to his cause, the traitors. When we find them, and we will, the Circle will not look kindly upon them. I just pray that we can root out this nasty Ares creature before the humans start taking more serious steps toward controlling us. I still remember during the second World War when they interned the Japanese. I’m afraid that the Blood wouldn’t get off that lightly. I really don’t want to go back into hiding.
Wow. Are you involved in these hunts?
Not really. I just entered a mourning period, along with, well ::blushes:: something that makes the grief a b it better. I’m more designed and built to handle public relations, my public speaking nerves notwithstanding. My friend, Chris, is much more involved than I am, and from what you were telling me, Ms. Michaels, her story is coming out next month?
Yeah, that’s right. Blood-Mage Rising is due out at some point in March.
Interesting title. I do hope Chris isn’t involved with this blood-mage referenced. Blood-mages are what we call the mage-born who convert to being members of the Blood, and all the races have forbidden their creation for the past two thousand years.
Um, I’ll plead the fifth on that.
Probably best. I’d rather not know details if it could get Chris in trouble. Just call me Schultz, I guess. (Hogan’s Heroes reference, if you have that show in your world).
Gotcha. Okay, well, I better let you get back to what you were doing!
Yes, indeed. I’m off to DC today to hopefully meet with a senator to stop a nasty bill that I’ve heard is being circulated to gather support. Have a pleasant day, Ms. Michaels! ::she departs:
Well, there you have it. Sorry she couldn’t stay longer. Hopefully this interview has sparked your interest in paying a visit to the world of the Dream-Walker War, with its first book, Blood Rage, out now from Evernight Publishing. Chapter Two is out next month.
That was a fun interview, Tory. Your heroine....*clears throat* Err, Dara is very interesting!
To learn more about Dara's book written by Tory Michaels, here is a blurb!
BLURB: For eighty years since the Great Awakening, humans and non-humans have lived in relative peace together. That peace is threatened when three bodies turn up less than a mile from the Bureau of Non-Human Affairs in Tampa bearing the signature of vampires who once terrorized Europe.
The Bureau’s chief liaison to the vampires, Dara MacKechnie, learns that the Tampa victims are not alone when her ex-lover, and head of the vampire’s Great Council, Anthony Caldwell comes calling. The pair discover the lie that separated them two centuries ago only banked their passion, not extinguished it.
Dara must decide whether she can trust Anthony with her heart a second time as they try to head off the war that threatens all they hold dear.
Tory Michaels Links
Facebook personal: authortorymichaels
Facebook page: thedreamwalkerwar
Originally from the Sacramento Valley, Tory packed up and moved all the way to Southwest Florida in 2004 with her husband (a Florida native) under the premise that ‘hurricanes almost never hit that part of the state.’ That year, 4 blasted the area. 4 more came the following year, and her husband blames her for bringing the hurricanes. She now resides in Jacksonville and is relieved that, thus far, no more hurricanes have followed her around.
She began writing in kindergarten when a turnip wished to be human and, other than a hiatus shortly after getting married, has never stopped. Her love of vampires began somewhere in junior high, and combining the two loves didn’t take long. She loves music, considers herself a ‘book slut’ whose reading habits would break her family financially if given free reign, and is (usually) delighted to be a mommy of twin Shrimpettes and a Shrimp.
Well, I had a blast today. Thank you Tory, and Dara for stopping by. Good luck on the book release, I wish you many many sales!!