Monday, June 18, 2012

Monday Blues Promotion: June 18

Welcome back! Monday Blues Promotion is where authors can showcase their work. You can post an excerpt from any of your books.....but, there's a catch!

No, no, don't groan. It's easy peasy, I promise:

All you have to do is post an excerpt that goes with the day's theme. We've had various ones each week.

In light of Father's day weekend, this weeks excerpt could be a memory of a character's father, the character could be a father, or a father to be.....something that involves a father.


Please make sure to provide book title, author name, and a buy link, or a way for readers to see where your work is.  Excerpts should be no longer than 750 words.

Ready, set, go! Have fun! Let's see what you have today!

24 comments:

  1. Hello! This is a brief excerpt from my new book- just released- Gnomeless. It is a contemporary romance for sale on Amazon- amzn.to/KUi441 Thanks for having me! Jennifer Zane

    The main character in the book, Veronica, always wanted to be a plumber like her dad, and work with him. And now she's on the brink of buying him out, so he can retire and torture Veronica's mom.

    Excerpt
    GNOMELESS - by Jennifer Zane
    CHAPTER ONE
    When little girls play make-believe with their dolls, most pretend they're mommies or princesses or teachers. Have little tea parties with them, play dress-up. That's what my sister, Violet, did with hers. Me? I played plumber with mine. I dressed my little Betsy Wets-Alot up in a pair of gray coveralls stolen from a male test pilot action figure I'd found at the toy store. He'd been tossed, naked, into the back of my closet until my sister found him and used him for the groom in her pretend weddings.

    Not only did I dress my self-wetting doll in menswear, I ran a straw down the pants leg to divert the faux pee away from her anatomically-incorrect little body. No potty for her. I was five and knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. I, Veronica Miller, wanted to be a plumber. Just like my father.

    Now, over twenty years later, I'd fulfilled my childhood dream. I was the plumber I'd longed to be, working with my dad. Soon to be working on my own. One last payment to my old man stood between his official retirement and my small business owner status.

    I smiled to myself about this almost-upon-me
    momentous occasion while lathering my hair in the shower. I squealed when the spray of water I was standing beneath went cold and quickly rinsed out the strawberry scented shampoo.

    “Stupid hot water heater,” I grumbled to myself as I yanked back the plastic shower curtain and stepped out into the steam filled room. I longed to get back to my own house as Violet's plumbing system needed some serious work. Even in the thick humidity, goose bumps popped out all over my body as I quickly toweled off and snuggled into my ratty, yet wonderfully comfortable flannel robe.

    While I leaned over and rubbed my wet hair with a bright pink towel, I heard it. The sound of a key in a lock, the front door opening. I froze in place upside-down, staring at my knees between the edges of the robe, towel tangled with my long hair. Since I was a plumber, not a law enforcement officer, I lacked the training to keep panic at bay. That hot, adrenaline-induced fear rose up inside me between one heartbeat and the next. I swear the little wet hairs on the back of my neck stood up. Help. I needed to get help, but my cell was in my purse, which I'd dropped by the front door, one room away. No house phone.

    Read more on Amazon! amzn.to/KUi441

    ReplyDelete
  2. Love's Prophecy. Available on amazon.

    Mel's father's insane laughter filled his skull until he thought it would split open, allowing his useless brain to leak out. “Son, with you protecting her, she's as good as dead. Who do you think you're fooling? You can't protect her. Just like you couldn't protect your slut of a wife or that slut you called a mother. Why don't you off the human now, make her death quick and relatively painless? At the very least, save her from the torture she will suffer at the hands of that demon whore. You're a sorry excuse for a male—a warrior!”

    Fear and rage shook Mel to the core. His heart knocked against his ribs as panic wrapped its gnarled fingers around his throat, squeezing so hard he couldn't breathe.

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  3. Thank you for the invite, Nikki. The following exempt comes from my new release HIS WITNESS TO EVIL. It's been called the perfect blend of romance and suspense. HIS WITNESS TO EVIL by me, Autumn Jordon, is available at Amazon. Here is the link. http://www.amazon.com/His-Witness-To-Evil-ebook/dp/B007MBA1O0/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1340034155&sr=1-1&keywords=his+witness+to+evil

    In this scene, my tough FBI agent John Dolton helps out a five year old girl he is protecting. I hope you enjoy.

    HIS WITNESS TO EVIL

    “It hurts,” Em whined, pulling at her hair.

    Okay. Something hurt. What in hell was he supposed to do about it? John glanced toward the ceiling. The shower upstairs still ran. Damn.

    He focused on Em, again. She continued to tug at something. It would be heartless to tell the kid to go tell her mom without at least trying to find out what was wrong. Concerned, John dropped to his knee. “What hurts? Your belly?”
    That was stupid. She was pulling at her hair. What did he know? Kids’ bellies usually were the problem.

    “No. It hurts my hair.” She combed through her fine hair and pulled the strand forward. The tiny purple clip she wore was tangled in her mass of blonde curls.

    John gulped. Helping her would involve touching. He didn’t know if he could.

    “Ouch.” Em continued to whine while she tried to pull the butterfly clip out of her hair on her own.

    John glanced at the ceiling again. The water ran nonstop.

    He had no choice; he had to help her. “I’m not an expert but I think I can help, if you’d let me. Can I try?”

    Em’s head bopped up and down.

    “Okay, turn around.” John trapped the chicken leg in his mouth again, stood, grabbed a paper napkin off the table and wiped the grease from his hands. Em’s shoulders felt like chicken wings as he pulled her toward him. “Let me see,” he mumbled around the leg while he surveyed the mess and tried to decide the best way to remove the clip without pulling Em’s hair.

    Her baby-fine hair was as soft as any rabbit’s fur he’d ever felt. Katie immediately popped into his head. John fingers stilled.

    Em tugged her hair.

    With his teeth biting into the chicken bone, he fumbled for a minute with the tiny plastic clip. He snapped it open and in half.

    “I’m sorry, it broke,” he muttered as she turned.

    “It’s okay. It was old.” She scratched her head where the clip had been. Static electricity made the fine strands take flight. John couldn’t help but chuckle while he placed the clip in her tiny hand.

    Happiness danced in her green eyes. They were so like her mother’s. Suddenly he realized the chicken leg was still clamped between his teeth. He grabbed the bone’s end and released it. Em’s stare followed the leg.

    “Are you hungry?” He worked the tension from his jaw by moving it back and forth.

    She smiled up at him, exposing the gap between her teeth. Her mass of hair fell forward and she swiped it back. “Yeah! And Mr. Blakeslee. We’re starvin’.”

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  4. Here is an excerpt from my upcoming release The Cliff (Sept. 2012 Ruby Lioness Press) - Enjoy ~ Anna Christie

    Once I saw Grant, I couldn't help myself from jumping into his arms and kissing him. I ran my hand over his bruised eye and then focused on his jaw. I ran my lips softly against it where he took the hit that almost ended everything. My mind wandered back to when he had tended to my bruised jaw. What the hell had gone wrong with Dane? How could things have gotten so out of hand?

    "So, finally I catch the proverbial cat and mouse with their paws in the cookie jar," I heard Jack say from behind me. Grant and I both jumped and then quickly separated.

    "What? Dad, that doesn't even make sense."

    "Sandwich cookies," Grant said.

    "Shut up!" I said breathily at him, shaking my head. Maybe he did hit his head.

    We both turned back to Jack. He swung his arm out again, this time ushering us to the couch. We followed and planted ourselves next to each other, facing where he chose to sit.

    "So, you two want to tell me something?"

    Grant and I looked at each other and then back to Jack. We both went to speak at the same time and nothing came out. Not from either of us.

    "Okay. Want to try again? Do I need to ask questions and you two can just nod?"

    "No, Dad. It's just, well …"

    "We're together. Together, together," Grant managed.

    "I see. 'Together, together.'"

    "Dad, Grant and I, we're in love. We're in a relationship. We're committed. I mean to each other."

    "Jack, I love Lanie. I always …"

    "You always have. I know. I'm not blind. Nicole used to tell me this was going to happen. I've just been waiting to see if she was right. I guess she was. How serious is this 'together, together?’"

    "Serious. Very serious," I told him and then I grabbed Grant's hand and brought it into my lap. Then I quickly moved it off my lap and just held his hand on the couch and gave a cheesy smile.

    "Jack, I want to give Lanie everything you'd want her to have. I promise I won't ever hurt her. I love her. I want to be with her forever."

    "I see. Lanie? How do you feel about this?"

    "Dad, I'm in love with him. I feel alive, and happy. Everything is just so amazing."

    "Right, no need to tell me how great the sex is again, Lanie."

    Grant's eyes got wide and he just looked back and forth between Jack and I. I think I heard him choke on his own spit or something.

    "I wasn't, but if you'd like to hear about it…"

    "No, no. I don't need all the details again, thanks."

    Now Grant had a nervous cheesy smile on his face. And that's when it happened.

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  5. ONCE A BRAT ALWAYS A BRAT…

    My mother made the dreaded phone call early on a Thursday.
    “Your dad died this morning at six o’clock.”
    I took it for granted that my father would be buried in Fort Sam Houston’s cemetery. I also assumed he would be buried in his uniform, so I was somewhat surprised that Mother had not laid out his dress blues, but a dark suit – a “civilian” suit.
    “Mom,” I protested. “Don’t you think Dad should be buried in his uniform?”
    “No,” she answered slowly, as if she were talking to a child. “Remember, your father had been retired much longer than he was in the Army.”
    That was a shock almost worse than the news of my father’s death. A civilian longer than a U.S. Army officer? Well, I thought, that may be the truth, as my mother and father knew it, and to a large extent, the truth for my two younger brothers. But for my entire childhood, from 1938 until my second year in college in 1958, the truth was my father lived and breathed the US Military. Therefore, every moment of my first twenty years of life was dictated by the whims of the United States Army. Where I would live. Where I would go to school. What friends I would accumulate. What discipline I would attain, and what goals I would aspire to. From the sound of Reveille each morning to Retreat each evening, I was reminded of my station in life: I was a Military Brat.
    I was always “different.” I was always the new kid in the classroom, the new kid on the block if we lived as “civilians” in town, the new kid in one of the cookie-cutter quarters in an endless series of military compounds.
    I still choke up when the National Anthem is played, whether at a ballpark or concert. The strains of Sousa marches bring tears as I picture parades of uniformed men saluting as the flag passes. “Yes, Sir” and “No, Sir” have not yet ceased to be an automatic part of my vocabulary. Merely climbing into a cab on a dark night in Chicago, the smell of fermented cabbage assaulting my nostrils caused me to blurt to the driver, “You’re from Korea, aren’t you?”
    I saw the reflection of his white teeth in the rear-view mirror as he grinned, “Yah. How you know that?”
    My one word reply: ”Kim Chi.”
    The yearning to hear the Austrian/Bavarian phrase “Gruss Gott” bestowed on me whether entering or leaving a shop, or merely passing a native on the streets along the Danube River, will never leave me.
    I will always cry at “Taps,” not so much as it reminds me of my father’s military funeral, but that it reminds me of my own lost childhood. “Taps” may as well have been sounded for me at my father’s retirement ceremony, for a unique part of me died, too: That part of me that reveled in being an officer’s daughter, with certain privileges of rank, along with that part of me that rebelled -- in spirit at least -- against the restrictions imposed upon me by that same privilege of rank: Officers’ kids must not misbehave, under any circumstances, as it reflects on your father’s career. Military Brats were as regimented as our fathers.

    EXCERPT FROM ONCE A BRAT, ALWAYS A BRAT....Part memoir, part therapy session
    Marilyn Celeste Morris, Author, Editor and Speaker
    Five novels, two non fiction books. All available on Amazon.com: http://amzn.to/KSq5Ya
    and at Vanilla Heart Publishing::http://bit.ly/LIq9iy
    And now, free reads first four chapters of all my books: http://bit.ly/JZM0j4

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  6. This is from Plague: A Love Story, Book Three of the Kandesky Vampire Chronicles, to be released on June 21, 2012 on Amazon.

    The trip back to the cottage passed in a flash. Stefan imagined the day when he’d take his son, or even his daughter, to town for the christening. He’d ask Lisle’s father to open his house for a christening party, welcoming the newcomer to the village. It was the miller’s first grandchild, as well.
    Fall and winter passed quietly. This year the snows were deep, and Stefan and Lisle spent days beside the fire. He was carving a cradle and small wooden balls and toys for the child, she was weaving and sewing blankets and knitting tiny dresses. Together, they skinned and tanned rabbit skins that Stefan brought back from his traps and the baby would be warm under a coverlet of soft fur.
    Lisle was right; she began labor on a soft May day. This time, Stefan took a horse borrowed from his father-in-law to fetch the midwife. They arrived before the child did and when the sun set, Stefan heard a small cry, then “Bless you” from the midwife. He came into the cottage where they had pulled the big bed in front of the fire and saw Lisle, laughing at a baby trying to nurse.
    She looked up at Stefan. “You have a son. And the midwife says he’s strong and healthy.”
    “Oh my love, my Lisle, thank you for this gift.” With tears in his eyes, he took his son from Lisle’s arms and looked at the tiny, wrinkled face. Then he couldn’t resist and pushed aside the swaddling clothes to check for himself

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  7. Very nice, ladies!
    This is from A Cowboy To Keep, just released from Ruby Lioness Press.

    “I’m just helping out a neighbor,” Cody said. “She needs a hand, I’m lending one. I’m not trying to seduce her or any other woman in this valley.”

    “If you keep telling yourself that, maybe you’ll believe it,” Luke said. “I think you’re hard for her. What I can’t figure out is why you’re holding back. Justin isn’t the issue. You’re crazy about the kid.”
    Wrong. Cody did like Justin a lot, but getting tied down with a woman who had a child was the last thing he wanted in life. He had no idea how to be a parent. To teach aspiring bull riders was one thing, raising somebody to adulthood was another.
    “Yeah, Justin’s great, but that doesn’t mean I want to hitch up with his mom. I’m not interested in Laney in any way more than a friend,” Cody said. “So just drop it.”
    Luke’s smile faded. “I will if you will. Being told who you should or shouldn’t date is a pain in the neck, isn’t it?”
    Cody didn’t answer. If Luke couldn’t see the difference between them, Cody didn’t think continuing to discuss it would change anything.
    “For the record, Code-Man, Rayanne is about as far from what I want as you can get. I kissed her a little bit and made her happy, but that’s as far as it goes. Whatever is going on between you and the widow woman is a lot more serious.” Luke struggled to his feet. “If you’re not careful, one of you is going to be the one who ends up with the broken heart. Maybe even that boy of hers. Besides you, I’ve never seen a kid looking so hard for a father in his life.”
    Cody couldn’t speak. His breath seemed to have vaporized.
    What had he done? Sharing a few kisses with Laney had been one thing, but Justin was another matter. Cody knew the kid idolized him, but he thought it was just a case of hero worship, nothing more. Was Luke right? Did Justin see him as a potential dad?

    God, he hoped not. He couldn’t be a father to anyone.
    He didn’t know how.

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  8. Some will not understand my book begining with a tryst that my father had. One has to read the book to realize his actions weren't bad, it was WAR after all. He was and still is, MY HERO! Excerpt from page one, "IMMORTAL RELATIONS": One day, while looking through all the papers in Dad's file cabinets an old folder caught my eye. In it, I found a black and white photo of my late father near an old building. On the back in his bold script was "Prague, Czechoslovakia," and below, in a very feminine hand, was, "I'll always be waiting here." This gave me the idea that I might be able to find the building and see some of where my fatehr had spent his time while in Europe, since he'd never discussed his work overseas. Even with the difficulites of travel in these days of terrorist threats, I thought it might be worth the hassle to see a part of Europe, I'd never visited. AMAZON BOOK LISTING - http://www.amazon.com/Immortal-Relations-ebook.dp/B006ZCBT6G/ref=sr1 MY BLOG SPOT - http://immortalrelations.blogspotcom

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  9. Thanks for letting us share a peek at our stories!

    Here's a bit from my contemporary romance, CLEAR AS DAY, available now ebook and print at The Wild Rose Press: http://ow.ly/bExIt and Amazon.com: http://amzn.com/B007RN9STW

    Kay bit into her s’more, and the gooey warm marshmallow and chocolate slid and squished between the crisp, crumbling graham crackers. Giggling as she caught the cracker crumbs, she took another bite of the sweet, messy treat.

    S’mores were one of the good memories of childhood days at the lake. Dad choosing the right toasting sticks. Dad taking her burnt marshmallows and giving her his perfectly toasted ones, swearing with a straight face that the black marshmallows were the best and she didn’t know what she was missing.

    But remembering the good times cracked open the door to the bad, as well…Didn’t I tell you how to do that once already, Kay…No, damn it, not that way…If you can’t keep up, you should have stayed—

    Slam that door. Focus on the positive. Focus on the now.

    She swallowed hard, jammed the old pain down and away, and licked the sticky trailing strings of sugar from her lips. Focus on the now…She looked up, into Nate’s eyes full of rich warmth and amusement.

    “Missed some.” Nate’s easy, seductive smile raised shivers through her. He leaned over and kissed the chocolate from her lips, sensuously tasting and grazing with teasing licks and bites. He laced one hand into her hair, cradling her head, keeping her close.

    She slipped her hand to rest at his nape. Everything faded from her mind but Nate and chocolate and the deep, sweet kiss.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Title: In Love’s Own Time (time travel/historical/contemporary)
    Author: Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy
    Excerpt:
    “Don’t try,” she answered. “And don’t worry, please. I am just having a baby.”
    His eyes darkened with emotion and she remembered how many women died doing just that. Maggie entered the room, glanced at Lillian’s sopping skirts, and put a hand to her chest.
    “Oh, Lillian, dear, Lillian, your time has come.”
    “Maggie, get Jim to take her upstairs,” Howard said, his voice urgent. “I am unable to do so.”
    Shugie stood there, untouched tea tray in her hands and shook her head.
    “It’s going to be awhile yet, Miss Lillian. Babies don’t get in much of a hurry. If you want to go upstairs, I’ll get rid of the tray and come help you get undressed.”
    She responded to the one voice of reason.
    “I will; thank you, Shugie.”
    Everyone fussed but her pains did not begin until after dark. At first, they were nothing more than a twinge that came and went but over the hours of the night, they increased in severity and frequency. Howard sat beside the bed, as she had done for him, nervous and wan. He would not budge, even thought it was apparently shocking for the father to be present at a birth. in this era.
    “All of you don’t need to wait with me,” Lillian said, marveling that the room was almost as full as it was during Howard’s crisis. “It may be awhile.”
    Mama Speakman and Maggie vowed to stay; so did Shugie. In the early morning hours, when the pains became harsh and intense, Dr. Lamson returned. By then, Lillian could care less if the entire town was in the room. She had no control over her own body; the contractions were living things that did what they pleased but although they were strong, she did not scream although the occasional moan slipped from between her taut lips.
    It was mid-morning when Dr. Lamson peered between her legs and said,
    “Push, Mrs. Speakman, push hard.”
    Lillian did and felt as if her body was about to be torn apart. She had no thought for Howard or anyone else although she heard her husband calling out,
    “He’s coming! By Jove, I see his head!”
    Gravity pulled hard and she felt a rush of something leave her body.
    “Is the baby here?” she asked but no one answered. Lillian raised her head to see but saw nothing but a wild flurry of activity. She heard a series of slaps, a bare hand on flesh and then the most beautiful, wonderful noise she had ever heard – the strong, angry cry of a baby.
    “You have a son,” Dr. Lamson pronounced, beaming.
    Adam bawled; making a big, fierce noise for such a tiny infant and she opened her arms.
    “Let me have him.”
    Maggie paused, blanket wrapped baby in her arms.
    “You must wait, Lillian. We will bring him to you later.”
    Lillian pushed up onto one elbow and over Howard’s worried warnings, said,
    “Now, Maggie.”
    Maggie handed the child over, a disapproving smirk marring her face.
    With her son in her arms, she looked up to catch Howard’s eye and smiled. He grinned at them both and she looked into the small face of her son, still crying.
    “Hello, Adam Speakman,” Lillian cooed.
    He stopped crying at the sound of her voice and she held him, her tears of joy pouring down her cheeks, laughing with delight. She kissed him, although he had not yet been cleaned, and Howard bent down to kiss her.
    “What time is it?” Lillian asked, wanting to know so the child could mark the time of his birth. “Is it still morning?”
    “It is, dear heart,” Howard said, his smile brighter than the sunshine that made the shadows in the room dance. Then he quoted Psalm 30. “Of course it is – joy cometh in the morning.”

    http://www.amazon.com/In-Loves-Own-Time-ebook/dp/B007A209G6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1329492235&sr=8-1

    ReplyDelete
  11. The excerpt I'm posting is from my book, Of Cheetah's Blood is a menage released from Amira Press last year. One of my heroes, Krulnar is remembering his father. His father was a full blooded vampire and his mother was a human. This book is also available on Barnes and Noble, aRe, and Amira Press.

    Excerpt:

    Hungary: 1062 A.D.
    Krulnar clutched the sword in his hand as the vampire charged him. Red eyes ablaze, his adversary bared its fangs. With one swipe, Krulnar decapitated him.
    “Hurry, son, there isn’t much time!” “Where’s mother?” Sarnak ignored his question. Smoke clouded their vision as they collected
    some clothing, then eventually made their way out into the courtyard. “Answer my question, father. Where’s Mother? Why are we leaving her behind?” Krulnar inquired once more as they mounted their horses and rode off.
    “I think you know the answer to that question.” Sarnak’s voice was gruff and filled with anger as they galloped off into the night.
    Trepidation and anger rose within Krulnar at the thought of never laying eyes upon his mother again. There were questions his father avoided, and once they reached their destination, he swore he’d pry them out of him.
    Once they reached the mountains, they dismounted their horses. Sarnak turned his gaze to his son. “I do not wish to abandon our home. We could have easily retreated to another realm, but now is not the time.”
    “You owe me an explanation.” Sarnak nodded. “That, I do.” “She died trying to defend me.”

    “Yes, son.” Sarnak bowed his head. “I loved your mother, but she was no match for a vampire. Human women are vulnerable in our world.” His gaze met Krulnar’s. “The vampire we fought is from the Cainen Coven. They are dangerous and care little of the existence of others.” Sarnak sighed. “We’ve spent centuries annihilating their kind, but they infect humans so quickly. Before long, I fear they’ll overrun the human population.”
    “I will fight to the death, Father,” Krulnar swore. “If only to avenge Mother’s death.”
    “As will I.” Sarnak frowned. “What is it, Father?” “There is a secret your mother never shared, I’m afraid.” “What?” “Long ago, we took in a vampire from the Tarquinian Coven. When we
    found him in the woods not far from our home, he was weakened from battle. We grew to love him as our own.”
    “What happened?”
    “Hatred between the Dhampir clans knew no boundaries, and we had to give him up. He was no longer safe since he was full vampire.” Sarnak wept for the first time in Krulnar’s life. “Luckily, Lazius of Steeleheart Coven accepted him.”
    “Where is he now?”
    Sarnak shook his head. “This, I do not know.” He paused for a few seconds and frowned. “He’d make a formidable ally of the Dhampirs, that’s if he hasn’t been tainted by the customs of Steeleheart Coven.”
    “Oh.” Krulnar hung his head in disappointment.
    Sarnak continued, “Vampires slaughtered humans mercilessly, often pinning the blame on Dhampirs. A handful of humans banded together to help annihilate Dhampirs altogether. Many covens had been wiped from the face of the Earth. That was when many covens retreated to otherworldly realms. Some vampires have made it difficult for vampires and Dhampirs to coexist with humans.” Sarnak bared his fangs. “I will continue to fight in this world. I’m not retreating.”
    “Do you foresee any changes?”

    Sarnak shook his head. “Not a chance, my son. It would take so much to bring the covens together and to cease bearing arms against one another.” He exhaled. “In addition to rogue vampires, we must contend with the Dulhari. They fight us with a mighty vengeance. One of their own has poisoned innocent minds of many in his clan.”
    “Who?” Krulnar asked.
    “I am unsure. The Dulhari who don’t side with this madman will be slaughtered. As it is, he’s managed to have some Dulhari side with him. Nonetheless, this cheetah shifter has managed to cause an uproar within the realms.”
    ****

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  12. Thanks so much! From THE BRIDE WORE CHOCOLATE, Nook First exclusive. This is the hero and his little sister:

    Michael stretched out on his couch, Sam at his side. On any other Thursday night, there'd be someplace to go. A networking meeting. A client event. A date with another of what seemed to have become an endless stream of identical women.

    But not tonight. In the two days since his lunch and the trip to the bridal shop with Candace, he'd barely been able to work. When the clock struck three this afternoon, he'd admitted to himself that he'd left his concentration back with her.

    He'd closed his appointment book, told his administrative assistant he was unavailable the rest of the day, stopped off to pick up Sam at the neighbor's apartment, and played hooky for the first time in seven years.

    A banging started on his door—loud, insistent and mad. Sam jumped off the couch and dashed into the corner. “Some guard dog you are,” Michael said.

    Sam whimpered in response, then lay down and feigned sleep.

    “Open up, Michael, I know you're in there. You can't avoid me forever.”
    Rachel. If he tried playing possum, he knew she'd probably pick the lock and let herself in anyway. As far as kid sisters went, Rachel took the cake for being innovative and stubborn.

    He got to his feet and opened the door. “Hey, Rach. What brings you to this side of town?”

    “You, you big dork. What's this 'Mr. Vogler is unavailable to everyone' crap your assistant pulled on me today? Is that some new way of avoiding the invitation to the family dinner next weekend?”

    “Why hello, Michael. So nice to see you, big brother,” he mocked.

    “Cut the shit, Michael.” Rachel brushed past him and into his apartment. She flopped onto his couch, kicked off her Keds and put her feet on his cherry coffee table. “I'm not in the mood to play nice.”

    “Let me guess. Mother? Or Father this time?”

    “Both.” She let out a sigh and tucked the ends of her pixie cut behind her ears. “How you lived with them for eighteen years I'll never know. I'm having trouble making it through seventeen.”

    “What'd they do?”

    “Signed me up for some all-girls finishing school. They think it will 'feminize' me.”

    “Well, Rach, you are a little rough around the edges.”

    “So are uncut diamonds, so shut up.”

    “Is that why you were trying to find me today?”

    “Yeah. I was hoping you could talk some sense into them.” Rachel popped forward and grabbed one of his hands. “If you have any love at all for your baby sister, you'll tell Mother and Father to get the hell out of my life.”

    Michael laughed. “See, that's why they're sending you to a girls' school. So you stop saying things like 'shit' and 'hell.'”

    She shrugged. “It gives me color.”

    “Fall foliage has color. You, my dear sibling, are already pretty without the extra syllables.”

    Rachel jabbed at his arm. “You're such a jerk.” But the words were softer than her punch.

    “At least look into it, okay? It'll make them happy and who knows? Maybe you'll like it.”

    “Being around a bunch of girls all day? I think not. Ugh. I'd rather join the circus.” She snagged a walnut out of the dish on his coffee table and cracked it with the silver nutcracker. “So where were you? You never, ever miss work. You're like Mr. Perfect.”

    “I had a date. Sort of.”

    “Sort of? What the hell kind of date is that?”

    Michael arched a brow at her.

    “Sorry.” She affected a haughty look, peering down her nose at him. “Whatever kind of date is that, darling?”

    He laughed. “You are from a different gene pool, I swear.”

    “You're avoiding my question.”

    Ever since she'd hit her teen years, Rachel had gotten too smart for his old tricks. “You're right. Did you ever think it's because parts of my life are personal?”

    “Nope, I'm your kid sister. Nothing's too personal for me.” She leaned forward, chin in her hands. “Give me the four-one-one.”
    (END)
    http://tinyurl.com/7dnz3z4

    ReplyDelete
  13. {Augustine is over four hundred years old, waiting for one of his boys to make him a grandfather. Drew, our heroine, has just awaken from going through the bonding with our hero, Dagger. She steps into his office connected to the back of their underwater home as he is meeting with his security.}
    --
    Dagger had to laugh at the offer. Augustine did not have clearance through the Indian Ocean. “Father, you cannot make this trip for me. I appreciate the gesture…” His comment proved no match for the gentle energy he felt along his back. The men stood. Augustine bolted to the hidden door behind the bookshelf as Drew’s soft face lit the masculine space.
    “Tiger Lily, what are you doing out of bed? You must rest, my dear,” he complained. He opened the hidden door and touched her face.
    “Excuse me, gentleman, Augustine,” she said and her attention was for her mate beside Augistine. “I hope I’m not interrupting.”
    A chorus of “Hello, my Queen,” echoed over the room. Dagger stood, his heart pounding. His Water Lily had changed.
    Coming to himself and easing his hand around her waist, he removed Drew from Augustine’s grasp. The change was immediate, no young girl boldness. A softer, peaceful, maternal allure brightened her young face. The entire room of men acknowledged the change, grappling with their individual reactions.
    “Are you in pain?” he asked, resting a hand over her flat stomach.
    “I woke and you weren’t there,” Drew said, eyeing the men and their blatant stares. “Is something wrong?”
    The room held silent under her presence. She broke the trance, pointing to the counter with the empty casserole dish.
    “I’m glad Dagger brought that out. I made too much.”
    “You do your mate proud, my dear,” Augustine commended her.
    She held no tension when Dagger stroked her spine this time and he felt the difference in her immediately. He tested her sense. Waving his finger behind her ear, he felt her jerk. She gained her muscle sensors with the bonding. She would feel him move through the room now.
    “Excuse me gentlemen. If there is no further business, I will expect a full report this afternoon after I return. Have Ayden prepare to accompany me. I would like to speak with him.”
    “As you wish.”
    Drew cuddled into him beside the door. The blue robe, his favorite color on her, draped her lush body. The sweet scent of lemons she exuded now carried other fragrances, cardamom and bergamot.
    “How long have I been a sleep?”
    “Two days. The last twenty hours you slept peacefully.”
    “Two days—” she repeated, her tone anxious.
    “Tiger Lily… you are radiant.” Augustine stroked a hand over her hair admiring his little girl. “It has grown, has it not?”
    “I think so… I was afraid to look.” Drew touched his hand and held it to the back of her head. “What do I call you?”
    “Grandpa sounds nice.” He preened and braced a hand beneath her chin. “I make you this promise. Fill these old arms with grandchildren and I will make certain they know Grandpa Hamilton as well as Grandpa Bartholomew through stories and your memories,” he said. Kissing her cheek, he glowed as if she were already pregnant.
    “You’d do that for me?”
    “Pe’lonia and I have watched you mature into a sweet and gentle young lady over the years. We are your family now,” he said, touching her cheek. “We love you, Tiger Lily.”
    “Father, give my mate a moment to breathe,” Dagger cautioned. “She has gone through much.”
    Drew wrapped her arms around Augustine’s waist and squeezed tight. “Promise me they will not be spoiled?”
    Augustine scoffed, “And be known as a bad grandpa? Never.”
    “Dagger” Brothers of Element Series. Underwater fantasy romance. ($2.99)

    http://amzn.com/B007748JTG
    http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dagger-cora-blu/1109203665?ean=2940013906112
    http://www.bibliocracy.com/e-books/fantasy/dagger
    http://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-dagger-679710-142.html
    I hope you enjoy my men. They only bite if you run.
    Cora Blu

    ReplyDelete
  14. This is so AWESOME that you are encouraging us to share. Here is the opening paragraph from my short story Delicato which I included
    in my first book The Shadow of a Dog I Can't Forget as a 'Sneak Preview" and will be included in my second book of stories Squinting Over Water (hopefully released this July) Both books are/will be available for purchase on Amazon:

    I killed only one thing in my life. My first goldfish. Mica and I were five at the time begging our father for a pet.
    "Squishy" came home in a Glad Zipper Sandwich Bag and because I was the oldest twin by three minutes, it was
    my responsibility to get him safely into the aquarium. He slipped away from me and fell down our 68 front steps
    to his death. My father believed in Heaven and redemption and that all things exist after death, just in a different
    form. So I told my sobbing brother Squishy never even knew what hit him traveling down this milky white river into
    forever...

    Thanks sooooo much for letting me share!

    Mary Kennedy Eastham
    Where to find me:
    Mary Kennedy Eastham on FB
    @Word Actress on Twitter
    Website: www.RP-Author.com/MKE

    ReplyDelete
  15. Excerpt of "Check Out Time" by Rosa Sophia

    "Check Out Time" is dedicated to my father. The main character's father, Roy, is based after my dad.

    * * *

    There was a sign that marked what was at the end of the dirt driveway, but no one bothered to read it anymore. Most of the people that came this far into town were locals, so they already knew what was at the end of the driveway without having to take a second glance at the sign.

    This was the home of Vogler’s Auto Yard. The sign read, “Junk Yard, Parts Dealer, Auto Repair Shop.” The sign also declared that state inspections could be carried out here, in the heart of Nacre Township, in the garage owned by Naomi’s father, Roy Thompson Vogler. A lot of folks around town called him R.T. Naomi called him Dad.

    A second garage stood a short walking distance away from the main garage. Each garage was built on a different side of the chain-link fence that surrounded a large junkyard. Naomi spent most of her time in the smaller garage, either working on her own car or helping her father with their hobby: restoring antique and classic cars. She had painted a colorful mural on the Eastern wall of her little hideout. Large letters read, ‘Naomi’s.’

    Inside the little garage, she sat up so fast that she nearly cracked her head open on the rear bumper of the Buick she was trying to repair. Naomi had been taking another look at the exhaust pipes when a voice interrupted her lonely reverie. Naomi tended to talk to herself a lot, getting lost in her own little universe, and she was prone to be easily surprised; especially when people called out her name and broke the window that separated her from the 'normal world.'

    She caught herself just before she hit her head, and then she slid out from under the vehicle and jumped to her feet. “Dad, you scared the hell out of me.”

    A man of rather short stature stepped into the shadow of the garage, escaping the heat of the sun. His blue T-shirt was wet with sweat and his jeans were stained with engine grease. His daughter looked no different. Her work clothes were a mess and there was dirt all over her face.

    Naomi’s father shook her head. “Like father, like daughter,” he said musingly. “Come on, kid, I’m going to make lunch.”

    He patted her on the back. The two of them walked away from the smaller garage where Naomi had been working, past the much larger garage where the business was housed, and toward the old farmhouse that Naomi and R.T. called home.

    * * *

    Visit my website at: http://www.rosasophia.com/

    "Check Out Time" is available on Kindle, Nook, and in print:

    http://www.amazon.com/Check-Out-Time-ebook/dp/B008ALNKOE/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1340038923&sr=1-2&keywords=rosa+sophia+check+out+time

    * * *

    Thanks for the chance to post here! :-) I hope everyone will visit my website. Take care.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I am loving these excerpts y'all!!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thanks for opening your home like that, Nikki. I've found a few new friends to take home.

    Cora Blu.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Thanks for this opportunity, Nikki. I'm posting an excerpt from my RS, "Logan's Redemption," one of the top 100 in suspense on Apple. "Logan's Redemption" is available on Amazon and Apple for 99 cents and on BN Nook for $2.99.
    Here's the Amazon buy link:http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0040JI3PG

    Excerpt:
    “You’ve never changed your opinion of me, have you?” he asked in a hard voice. “I’m still the boy from the bad neighborhood, not fit to be a father to your son.” With a contemptuous glance, he turned away and strode to the fireplace. He leaned on the mantle, his profile to her. His chest rose and fell with his shallow breathing.
    Doriana studied him. His jaw set in a tight line. His entire body looked coiled and ready to fight. Or maybe flee. Tears sprang to her eyes. They’d come so far in the last weeks. How had it all gone so terribly wrong?
    “What do you want, Logan?” She tangled her fingers through the long strand of pearls she wore, trying to rein in the anxiety that churned her stomach.
    Logan’s hazel gaze impaled her. “I want to be in Josh’s life.”
    “What?” She yanked on the pearl necklace. The strand came apart in her hands. She watched helplessly as beads rolled all over the floor. My life is coming apart the same way. She raised her gaze to find a stony-faced Logan staring at her with unyielding eyes.
    “What’s your answer?” He spit the words out.
    “How long will you be in his life, Logan? You’ll leave again and what will happen to Josh? I will not see him hurt.”
    Logan was at her side in an instant. He grasped her shoulders. She winced at the anger in his eyes. The twinkling lights of the tree reflected on the golden stubble of his beard, mocking the tension that arced between them like an electrical current.
    “I’m Josh’s father,” he rasped. “I’m not some stranger, here one day and gone the next.”
    “Aren’t you?” She bit down on her lip. Hurt shattered the chiseled planes of Logan’s face. She glimpsed the vulnerable young boy he’d once been, the boy she’d fallen in love with. He released her as if he couldn’t bear to touch her. Her throat thickened with tears.
    “So that’s it.” The quiet calmness of his voice damned her more than shouts. “I’ve never been more than a temporary diversion to you.”
    “That’s not true,” she whispered. “I loved you. I ....” She stopped herself before she blurted that she loved him now.
    “Do you really know what love is?” His gaze raked her. “You have no problem giving your body to me, but I’m not worth bothering with on any other level.”
    Fury and pain pierced her like a carpenter’s awl. “How dare you talk to me like that?”
    He released a breath. “I’m sorry. I was out of line.” Sadness creased his features. “I just want to be in my son’s life.”
    “How do I know you’ll be around for him?”
    “Trust me. Damn it, just trust me.”
    Could she trust him? Maybe she should ask him to stay. What if he said no? Could she take that chance? Her insides shook. “I can’t.”
    “You can’t trust me?” Steel hardened his voice.
    She shook her head. “No, that’s not it.”
    “Then what is it, Dorie?”
    Words dried in her throat. He had to want her enough to never leave again. She wouldn’t beg.
    “Damn you,” he said in a thick whisper.
    He pulled her to him and took her lips in a bruising kiss. She held herself tight, resisting his pull. His relentless lips demanded her surrender. She could no more fight him than she could stop breathing. And she loved him. She twisted her arms around his neck and urged his lips apart with her tongue.
    He let out a low groan. His lips softened against hers and he opened his mouth for her. He tasted like cinnamon coffee and mint. She pressed closer. He might leave and break her heart. But he belonged to her now.
    They slid to the floor together. He leaned over her, his eyes dark and mysterious in the soft Christmas lights. His unique scent of male and citrus mingled with the pine of the tree. Those scents would forever remind her of Logan.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Here is an conversation between hero Lucas Ramone and his diabolical father Raphael from my debut release Dangerous Ally, by Jessica Lauryn:

    “Interesting arrangement,” Raphael remarked, coming past the dinner table. He looked at the broken glass, offering an inquisitive smirk.
    Lucas glared at him. “I thought you knew everything that went on in my house. I’m guessing you know exactly who I was having dinner with, so why don’t you just cut the prelude and tell me what you want.”
    Raphael grinned, turning his attention to the turntable in the corner. “I appreciate the compliment, however, it’s unwarranted. Contrary to what you believe, Lucas, no, I don’t know everything that takes place here. I relinquished that right years ago, when I sold you the property. But judging by the candles and the sounds of Chopin’s Nocturne in B-flat minor Larghetto, I can only assume you were entertaining a rather important dinner guest this evening.”
    Spare me.
    His father knew damn well that Lilah Benson was the person he’d had dinner with. It was written all over his smug face. But Lucas was getting a very strange vibe from all of this. The baiting tonight had nothing to do with his father’s typical taunting routine. Perhaps he was finally going to call out the old man’s miserable attempt at stealing Project Gemstone.
    “I must congratulate you,” Raphael went on. “After all these years, who’d have thought you would stumble upon another opportunity to conquer one of the Benson girls? You’re stepping out of the shadows, son. I’m pleased to see it.”
    “That’s funny. Considering out here I can keep a much closer watch on things. Things like Project Gemstone…”
    Raphael twitched, concealing his reaction with chuckle.
    Lucas continued, “I don’t know what sort of game you think you’re playing, but Lilah and I are friends. Nothing more.”
    “Naturally. You’d never be foolish enough to let her think anything else, the way you did her older sister. If you do one thing well, Lucas, you learn from your mistakes.”
    Now it was Lucas’s turn to laugh. Only, there was nothing funny about any of it. This was just the way he got through these father-son lectures, of which there was a never ending supply.
    “If I didn’t know any better, I’d say you wanted this to go well for me. Careful, Dad.” He pointed his finger. “You’re showing your hand.”
    “Why wouldn’t I want you to find happiness?” Raphael asked, with a straight face, as if he meant what he was saying. “For five years you’ve confined yourself within these walls, hardly a person gets in or out. If Lilah Benson’s presence makes such a positive change in your life, son, I’m just sorry she didn’t come into it years ago.”
    Lucas rolled his eyes. The idea that his father expected him to believe he felt this way was asinine. He’d hired Lilah to get the inside track. It was the only possible explanation for the way he was acting.
    And he had chosen to ignore the obvious, let his guard down and actually confided in the woman. Hadn’t given her actual information per se, but he hadn’t exactly denied the truth when she’d referred to his operation as “Project Gemstone.”
    Nevertheless, Lilah had run from what could have been a glorious opportunity for her. That made him wonder. Why would she do this unless her agenda and his father’s didn’t mesh?
    This was a possibility. There was another as well.
    Maybe Lilah hadn’t pressed him because he was starting to get to her.

    Buy Links:
    Buy the e-book:
    SirenBookStrand: http://www.bookstrand.com/jessica-lauryn
    Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Dangerous-Pinnacles-BookStrand-Publishing-ebook/dp/B0054ROAR8/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1308661625&sr=8-1
    Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dangerous-ally-jessica-lauryn/1103392690?ean=9781610342810&itm=2&usri=dangerous%2bally
    Buy the Paperback:
    Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1610346971/bookstrand-20
    Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dangerous-ally-jessica-lauryn/1103392690

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the invitation to post an excerpt. This is from my book, Spanked Princesses:The Pianist. It is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords. The heroine has just finished an argument with the hero, and he has walked out on her.

      The whine of the garage door finished their argument. Jack's parting shot hurt. He was leaving for his club and he would be late. She didn't even know what or where his club was. She tore off her sweaty clothes and threw them at the hamper. The scent of fear was heavy on them, she hadn’t been so afraid since she was thirteen. If he left her, it would be no different from her childhood, maybe all men were the same, and she fought the tears. She could never forget that night, her daddy and mom screaming, until he swore he was leaving. They were on their own. He didn’t care anymore. The door slammed behind him, and she and her mom clung to each other, alone and crying, neither sure where the rent money would come from. She grew up. At thirteen a girl shouldn’t have to grow up so fast.

      Kristina trudged into the sparkling bathroom struggling for control over her emotions. She stared at herself in the mirrored wall, her blue eyes wide long after the disagreement. The naked body she gazed at was the only currency she owned and she played the game well. Not the cheap tricks her high school girlfriends had pursued. Mom had taught her to hold out for a man well-off enough to keep her in style, and, blessed with movie star looks, she succeeded. Mom had managed to keep a membership in the country club, although the dues were killing, and Kristina was paraded through a number of events, club beauty pageants, golf tournaments, and swim teams, fishing for a man, a man of appropriate means. Persistence paid off and she’d netted Jack, a grieving widower. It took her six months to convince him it was okay to like her. Finally he believed her when she told him Jan wouldn’t mind. They visited the stone marker together every Sunday.

      Buy Link: http://tinyurl.com/7x56vh2

      Delete
  20. Here is my latest release MY HONORABLE HIGHLANDER, a Scottish Time Travel romance, with a conversation betwen the father-to-be and his new wife:

    Haven stood on the cliffs and let the ocean’s winter spray tickle her lowered eyelids. Chilled fingers brushed back several locks of frozen hair. She rubbed her swollen abdomen and wondered what to name the baby. Kirk had some thoughts on the subject especially since he hated his own name. Their discussion turned heated and everything that transpired last night swam before her in a dream-like vision.

    “A name should be passed with honor through the family,” he had roared. “My father did me wrong when he named me for the place he got me on my mum.”

    “Oh?” she had replied. “You don’t want to call our child Bulls’ Pub?” When she giggled, he had thrown her onto the bed, trailed warm kisses down between her quickly bared breasts, and feasted on her belly. He paused to plaster sloppy kisses on their growing baby until his eagerness made him strip her bare. Her giggles turned to moans when he rolled her to her stomach and nibbled the sensitive area around her tailbone.

    “That’s nice. But, I can’t touch you.”

    “Allow me this pleasure, sweeting. The view is magnificent.”

    “The view?”

    Title: MY HONORABLE HIGHLANDER
    Author: Nancy Lee Badger
    Genre: Scottish Time Travel Romance
    Length: 92,000 Novel
    Amazon: http://amzn.to/Knot6H
    NOOK: http://bit.ly/K4TqzH
    All Romance EBooks: http://bit.ly/JmqjXJ
    ISBN 9781476417400

    Nancy Lee Badger Twitter me @NLBadger www.nancyleebadger.com

    ReplyDelete
  21. This is from "When Promise Meets Passion" which is being released TOMORROW 06/19/12!
    http://www.bookstrand.com/when-promise-meets-passion

    The pear-cut solitaire sparkled, and she wondered if there was ever a more beautiful ring.

    “Come here, you. Let’s seal this deal with more than a handshake.” He brought his lips to hers and kissed her passionately.

    The moment was perfect, and she didn’t want to ruin it, but he had to know. She had to tell him. If she didn’t, she may burst with anticipation and anxiety all at once.

    She pulled away. “Cole, I had to stop at the pharmacy this morning and pick up some…medicine.”

    “Medicine? What’s wrong, baby? Are you sick?”

    “Well, not exactly. I do have a condition though, and I need to take vitamins. I’ll be okay eventually, but it’s going to take time.”

    “Time? What’s wrong? How long?”

    She watched worry etch his face and fought the urge to smile. This was evil of her, but she was enjoying the buildup way too much. The angel sitting on her shoulder was poking at her to do the right thing, though, so she relented.

    “Oh, they say the average is around nine months.”

    His worry changed to confusion, then surprise, and finally a huge smile crossed his face. “You’re pregnant?”

    She nodded. No longer caught up in teasing him with the news, she cried with happiness. Of all the ways she could’ve imagined her day ending, finding out she was pregnant and getting engaged was not one of them.

    “Oh, baby. Pregnant? Really? Oh, God help me, woman, if you’re teasing about this, I will tan your hide and handcuff you to the bed and punish you.”

    Laughing she wrapped her arms around him. “How many times do I have to tell you that is not a punishment?”

    He waggled his brows at her in a naughty fashion. “Do you have any idea how much I love you? Our life, it’s just beginning.”

    She would have answered his declaration of love. She would have said so many things if he allowed her. Within moments she found herself being stripped of her clothes, only to be lifted and carried to the bed. The way he took charge and dominated every aspect of their lovemaking was something she would never tire of. Finally her life would be complete. A family with Cole, the only man she had ever loved.

    She thought of the letter her brother wrote and how he saw their future before even she did. Their child would be named after him. Of that she was certain. If they had a girl, they would just have to get creative.

    One way or another Dex would always be a part of their life and family.

    You can find me on facebook here: http://facebook.com/NicoleMorganFanPage
    And you can find me on twitter here: http://twitter.com/mornic1

    ReplyDelete
  22. TIME TO BURY THE PAST, a clean contemporary, was published by The Wild Rose Press in 2011. My hero struggles to connect with his teenage son.

    Purchase links: TWRP http://goo.gl/TesrJ or Amazon http://goo.gl/70Y1n

    Excerpt
    Later that night, stewing over his son’s continuing sullen behaviour, Zane reflected on the afternoon’s
    encounter with Cody’s best friend. An image immediately filled his mind. Not of the drunken lout,
    but a much more enticing sight. She’d seemed so young, much too young to have
    a son Cody’s age. Closing his eyes he could see her clearly. The leather had moulded tight around her
    legs, and the curve of her bottom. As he analysed the incident again now, he
    experienced another momentary surge of sympathy as he recalled how the woman’s big brown eyes had
    swollen with tears and her ashen face had flooded with embarrassed colour. He conceded it must be
    hard for a woman alone to raise a son. Boys needed a firm hand and strict discipline.
    Not willing to dwell on the memory, he jumped up and peeped into Cody’s room. Cody and I are fine,
    he told himself stubbornly. We just need time to get to know each other.
    Watching his son’s rhythmic breathing until he was sure Cody was asleep, Zane dared to creep in and
    stand above the bed, glowering down until tears obliterated his son’s face. Clenching his teeth to stop
    even the slightest sound from escaping, Zane wiped shaking hands across his wet face. What the hell is
    the matter with me? Why can’t I show Cody how much I love him? It wasn’t because he was like his father. He was
    nothing like his father. He’d never be so cold and selfish, always putting his job before his family,
    always expecting them to understand his commitment to his country was more important than
    they were…
    The muscles in Zane’s stomach clenched and bile rose in his throat as these memories coincided with
    his earlier reminiscences. He turned and rushed into his own room, closing the door before he repeatedly
    thumped his fist, hard, against the wall. Slumping onto his bed he buried his face in his hands. Oh, my
    God, I’m not like my father. I’m worse.

    Read another excerpt at www.anneashby.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. Many thanks for this opportunity. Here's an excerpt from my latest release 'Changing the Future'. Paul and Lisa's tentatively renewed relationship falls apart when Paul discovers she has a young son. He assumes the child must be the son of his rival, Ralph Glover. Here, Lisa and Ralph are looking for Nicky who has gone missing at the college summer fair.

    For ten minutes they wandered around the different stalls, asking everyone if they’d seen a little boy in a yellow tee-shirt and brown shorts. Finally one of the students said, “Yes, I saw him near the ice cream van a couple of minutes ago.”
    Lisa relaxed and laughed as they made their way across the grass. “I might have known. He’s probably bought the biggest ice-cream they—” She stopped abruptly.
    In a space a few yards from the van was Nicky; crouching down next to him, was Paul. Nicky was obviously telling him something and Paul was nodding.
    “Oh, God,” Lisa breathed. Everything around her slipped out of focus as she watched the two figures. There was no mistaking the likeness: the same stunning blue eyes, the same mouth and chin. Nicky—and his father. “Oh God,” she whispered again and clutched Ralph’s arm.
    Paul stood up and signalled to a couple of the female students who were standing near the ice-cream van. Nicky looked up at him, grinned as Paul said something, and put his hand confidently into Paul’s.
    “Come on,” Ralph said quietly.
    Lisa was only half-aware of his arm around her as they walked towards Paul and Nicky, but she was shaking so much she was glad of his support.
    “Mummy!” Nicky had seen them. “Mummy, I couldn’t find you!”
    As he ran to her, Lisa glanced past him for a second and saw Paul’s face crease into a frown. He stared, first at her and then at Nicky, as she bent down to pick up her son.
    “We couldn’t find you either,” she said with a tremulous laugh.
    Involuntarily she looked over Nicky’s shoulder at Paul. The world fell away as she saw him still staring at them both. Confusion and uncertainty were transparent on his face. Her heart pounded hollowly in her chest when his eyes met hers in an unspoken question. She knew, as surely as if he’d said the words aloud, what the question was.
    He’s mine, isn’t he?
    Nicky turned to see what she was looking at. “This man found me, mummy.”
    “I—er—” Paul swallowed and clearly had a struggle to find his voice. “I think maybe you found me, Nicky,” he said, and looked at her again. “I…” He took a step towards her, stopped, and tightened his lips in a forced smile. “He said he had to go to the Hook-a-Duck stall if he got lost, but he couldn’t remember where it was. I was going to ask Stacey and Alex to take him there. It’s okay, girls,” he called to the two students. “Problem solved.”
    “Thank you,” Lisa said calmly, even though her pulse still raced as if she’d run a marathon.
    Paul glanced at Ralph and nodded briefly in acknowledgement before averting his eyes from them both. “I’d better go. I’m helping with the basketball shoots in the gym.” He looked at Nicky again for what, to Lisa, seemed like an eternity, before he eventually smiled. “Goodbye, Nicky. Don’t get lost again, will you?” Abruptly, he turned away.
    “I won’t! Bye-bye, Mister—Mummy, what’s his name?”
    “His—his name’s Paul.”
    “Bye-bye, Mister Paul!” Nicky called.
    Paul half-turned to wave to him.
    Nicky obviously hadn’t recognised him from seeing him on television a couple of weeks before, but Lisa wished she could tell him to remember this moment forever. She wanted to say, Nicky, that’s your father, and you might never see him again. Instead, she turned away, not wanting Nicky or Ralph to see the tears brimming in her eyes.

    Changing the Future, by Paula Martin
    "They can't change the past, but will it take a volcanic eruption to help them change the future?" Available from Amazon http://amzn.to/LicKMn

    ReplyDelete