Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Half Blood: Chapter Seven



Seven

 ***Warning: 18+ only. This chapter contains swearing and explicit scenes.***

Buddy pushed into a bar in downtown Buxton, the stench of stale beer, cigarettes and sex assaulting his olfactory senses. His sharp eyes surveyed his surroundings before he took a seat close to the liquor.


Throwing a coaster onto the pockmarked bar, the bartender asked, “What’ll it be, Buddy?”


“The usual,” he replied from around the hand-rolled between his lips. The bartender grunted a reply and shuffled around the bar, producing cheap whiskey in a dirty shot glass and a beer chaser. “Thanks.”


He nodded. “You want me to start up a tab?”


Buddy thought about it for second. “Yeah. You do that.”


“You got it.”


The shot of whiskey burned his throat as it went down, but he let it burn. He needed to feel this pain now. When the edge had worn off, he sucked back his beer, draining the bottle in one sitting. He wiped the back of his sleeve across his mouth. As he placed the bottle back on the bar, another shot of whiskey and a fresh beer were sitting there. Buddy’s eyes met the near black of his new best friend behind the bar and he nodded. 


By his sixth ride on the merry-go-shot, Buddy’s body hummed with warmth. The temperature of the liquor in his blood didn’t deaden his hard-on for a fight though. If anything, it made him hopped-up for more than just one. The sound of loud laughter brought his head up from looking down at his now empty shot glass.


The bar had slowly been filling up with the usual Wednesday night crowd as he sat there drinking himself into a stupor. Most of the cocksuckers were truckers wearing their wife-beaters and ripped jeans like it was something they could be fucking proud of. Their arms had some kind of ink on them, and mostly it was the name of the trash they’d managed to knock up. The rest of the clientele were working girls getting nice and blunt for the whoring that would come later. They were all the fucking same. His top lip lifted from his teeth in a sneer before he focused on the fresh drink in front of him.


“Hey!” someone said beside him. 


Buddy lifted his head slowly to look at the guy. He was a trucker wearing the requisite wife-beater and jeans. “What?” Buddy snarled.


“My girlfriend here says you were checking her out. Is that right?”


Buddy’s eyes drifted over the guy’s right shoulder. The bottle-blonde who was standing against the pool table was wearing a shirt that was about three sizes too small and a pair of panties that had been mistaken as a skirt. She smiled at him as he looked her over, her legs widening a little and telling him all he needed to know—she was jonesing for a fight so she could get laid later on tonight, and by the look in her eyes, she wanted it to be Buddy and not the fucking mouth breather standing in front of him.


“So? What have you got to say for yourself?”


Buddy’s gaze finally fixed back on the Whiskey Tango in front of him.


“Yeah. I was checking her out. What are you going to do about it?”


The guy’s face reddened as Buddy metaphorically cranked the man’s balls in his palm. He could smell his anger––the acrid stench of his rage was like a red rag to the bull in him. Buddy saw the trash’s fist flying before the punch could land. Dodging the fist, Buddy elbowed him hard in the solar plexus. Air left the guy’s body in a warm rush of beer-drenched breath as he doubled over. Buddy slammed his knee into his face while he was bent over, knocking him down to the filthy ground.


Like all bar fights, it took less than two seconds for a crowd to form, the bottle-blonde front and center behind her man. They all yelled and jeered as Buddy’s eyes roamed over the nameless faces. His lack of attention left him open for the punch in the face that he hadn’t even seen coming. Buddy felt his lip splitting open, blood crashing out of the wound in an angry wave. Buddy’s anger pulsed out of him with his blood, his adrenalin kicking in and jacking him up. The guy swung at him again, the blow glancing off his cheek and landing on his jaw. Buddy stumbled backwards, catching himself on the lip of the bar.


The guy danced back a few steps, holding his hands up in front of him like he was some goddamn professional boxer. His bitch screamed at him to hit Buddy again, but Buddy saw his hesitation. With a grin twisting up his lips, he pushed away from the bar and kicked the guy in the kneecap from the side and watched him go down. When he was finally on the ground, a kick to the face made sure he stayed that way.


“Fucking cocksucker,” Buddy growled, spitting out blood onto the guy’s face.


The cheer that erupted from the peanut gallery hurt his ears. He staggered back until the bar stool hit him in the ass and a fresh shot and another beer were lined up under his nose along with a cloth. Buddy looked up into the bartender’s life-worn face.


“For your lip,” he said, pointing down at the cloth.


Buddy picked up the fabric and held it gingerly to his mouth. The pain felt fan-fucking-tastic. It brought back memories from being on the street again, fighting for survival, and later on fighting just for the hell of it. 

By the time he had downed the drinks, the blonde had twitched her way over to him.


“Hi, handsome,” she purred into his ear. “You wanna get out of here?” She pressed her silicone wonders against his arm, making sure to jiggle the goods as incentive. 


Buddy turned his whole body to look at her. Her eyes were the color of watered-down peas, her lips pumped so full of collagen that she probably sweat the stuff. There was nothing about her that was real except for her eye color and even then that was debatable. Physically, she wasn’t anything like his usual type, but she would do. She looked like a screamer.


“What do you think?” she asked, sucking in her lower lip so slowly that it made his cock grow hard.


“You’ll do,” he growled. She pressed her upper body closer to his, moaning when he ran his hand along her hip and dug his fingers into her ass. He pulled her towards him until she was forced to straddle him on the bar stool. Her skirt rode up revealing just a thin piece of fabric between her core and his straining cock. She ground herself onto him, throwing her head back, her mouth parted in an open invitation.


He glanced over her shoulder to find the whole bar watching their little show. He lifted his hips up to meet her core until she moaned out loud. He smiled at all the other cocksuckers and pushed her off him roughly.


“Are we going to get out of here, baby?” she asked, pulling down her non-existent skirt.


“I’m going to finish this drink, then I’m going to fuck you next to a dumpster in the alleyway. You feel me?” he asked raising an eyebrow at her. She nodded slowly at him, her eyes heated. Her arousal was so strong that he could have said anything to her and she would have done it. 


Picking up the drink in front of him, he threw it down before grabbing some green from his pocket and leaving it on the bar. The bartender lifted an eyebrow in question.

“To clean up the mess,” Buddy told him gruffly. He took the girl around the waist and led her outside. It was a good fucking night.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Author Spotlight: Rebecca Rivard

As a teenager, Rebecca Rivard read way too many romances, little realizing she was actually preparing for a career. After a detour through various genres, she has returned to her first love. She has placed highly in a number of romance writing contests, including a first for sexiest scene in the MRW Reveal Your Inner Vixen contest.

Like the river fada in her Fada Shapeshifter Series, Rebecca is happiest in or near the water, believes that the fae are beautiful but dangerous, and could cheerfully exist in a world without cell phones—although not without her e-reader.

Where to find Rebecca...




The first novel in an exciting new paranormal romance series!

A dark shifter alpha...
Dion, alpha of a shapeshifting river fada clan, has had enough. The sun fae queen has seduced several of his best warriors, leaving them fit for little but fishing and drinking wine, and draining life-energy from all his people in the process. Then comes the final straw—she works her wiles on his youngest brother. It’s time to turn the tables on the shallow, pleasure-loving queen.

A jaded fae queen...
Cleia is a two-hundred-year-old fae whose powerful glamour gets her any man she wants. But she’s bored. She wants something more—and the river fada men have it. So when she meets the big, untamed river alpha, she sets out to seduce him, even though something whispers this man is dangerous. She all but orders him to her bed.

That’s just what Dion is counting on…

THE FADA.
Shapeshifters created during Dionysus’s infamous bacchanals.
They’re ruthless, untamed—and irresistible to the one person fated to be their mate.

Where to find "Seducing the Sun Fae"

http://amzn.com/B00VDND708

Giveaway
(US only)
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

***AUTHORS***
To get your spotlight on my blog, click here

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Sneak Peek: Dark Devotion - book #3 in the Dark Series

I love sharing my work with people, especially if that work isn't available anywhere else! Here's a sneak peek of the first chapter of Dark Devotion. Enjoy!

***This is unedited work and subject to change. All this material is copyright by Lauren Dawes***

Chapter 1

*This chapter does contain swearing. For readers 18+ only*
 
Aubrey looked at himself in the mirror, brushing his fingertips against the lapel of his charcoal Tom Ford suit jacket. His tie was the same shade, contrasting against the crisp whiteness of his shirt. He buttoned up the front of the jacket, then unbuttoned it, then buttoned it again.
Fuck.
He was nervous.
The question wasn’t so much why, but who.
Taer.
She’d seen him in nothing more than a workout singlet and jeans, and she’d still wanted him…not that she would have admitted to that. He would break her though. He was determined to get into her panties if it was the last thing he did. He could practically smell the sexual tension whenever they were around each other, and no matter how hard she fought him on it, Aubrey was sure she felt the same way about him as he did for her.
The trick was getting her to admit to it.
Stepping back from the mirror, he turned to look at the entire ensemble, smiling devilishly.
She wouldn’t be able to resist him.
Turning around, he left his bedroom, collecting the keys to his Lexus as he strode past the hall table. Although he didn’t need a car, he found great pleasure in driving. He took even greater pleasure in the looks of admiration and outright lust that came his way when he drove the high-powered LFA around the streets of Boston. Ostentatious it may be, but he wasn’t afraid to admit that that was what he craved.
Although, if he was honest, he was craving a little dark-haired Mare more.
The car door closed with a satisfying thump that spoke of precision engineering and Aubrey carefully pulled away from the curb. The traffic was sparse – an phenomenon which only survived in a tiny window of time between the peak hour rush and the time when young professionals returned to the city to spend up big at the many clubs and bars in the downtown area.
Aubrey navigated his way down to the Eye, pulling up into the loading zone outside the front of the club. He didn’t need to worry about being towed though—he had more than half the Boston Police Department in his pocket. Having that kind of backing was essential for the line of work Aubrey was in.
A line had already formed outside the bar-slash-nightclub-slash-gentlemen’s club—a line Aubrey by-passed completely. A few people cursed him out, but he ignored them all. Focusing his attention on the Valkyrie at the door, he met her bi-colored eyes and waited. There was something about the female that he couldn’t place. With her shaved head, she was a soldier that was clear enough. But there was something else going on there. He’d never heard her speak before, and by the looks of the scar running across the front of her throat, he thought that maybe she couldn’t.
After one long eye-fuck, the Valkyrie uncrossed her arms and stepped away from the door. He nodded to her as he passed, stepping into the Eye. The first level was where the bar was. It wasn’t very busy. A lot of people were going straight to the stairs, hoping to get access to the club and strippers up top. Aubrey surveyed the bar, looking for Taer and wondering whether she was working when he didn’t immediately see her.
He was scanning the area near the stage when he caught sight of her. Wearing a shirt with the club’s logo across the front of her chest, Aubrey drank in every detail of her. The scar across her throat that she hid away before was now on show. Her hair was tied back into a high ponytail that bounced on her shoulders as she walked, and the determined glint in her eye was curiously absent. Instead, she looked almost serene.
Aubrey moved towards her, reaching for her shoulder as she turned around to wipe down a table. She jumped at the contact, swinging around with a grimace on her face and a curled up fist ready to strike. Recognition flooded her eyes, and she lowered her hand. Aubrey squeezed her shoulder, just for the physical contact, but when she winced, he frowned.
That was when he noticed the bandage on her shoulder. Rage filled him suddenly. The feeling was so intense it staggered him. Pulling the shirt away from her shoulder, he stared at the bloody patch.
“Who did that to you?” he demanded, the urge to tear whoever it was apart with his bare hands wrestling with his common sense. It was just like when he’d seen her scar for the first time, only this time the feeling was ten times stronger.
Her green eyes met his. “He’s dead.”
‘He’ was Darrion, the Mare who had both mentally and physically tortured Taer; firstly by killing her brother and secondly by haunting her dreams. Darrion had also been the thorn in Aubrey’s side, the one thing to stop him from expanding his business empire. Aubrey was the top supplier of Cocaine in Boston, Maine, New Hampshire and Connecticut. What set him apart was the purity of his product. With Darrion out of the way, Aubrey could now use more Mares to move the drug.
It struck Aubrey then just how close he’d come to losing Taer. He’d manipulated her into killing the guild master purely for personal reasons, but after spending time with Taer, training her, he realized that she was much more to him than he ever thought she’d be. Reaching up, he ran his hand down the side of her neck, feeling her pulse fighting to get out in reaction to his touch.
“Do you have any other injuries?” he asked.
The room seemed to get sucked away whenever he was with her. He didn’t care that they were standing in the middle of a room filled with people. Aubrey had tunnel vison when it came to Taer. Her eyes had closed when his fingers grazed her skin, and he noticed the deep purple bruises peeking out from under the bandage.
Taer sucked in a deep breath. “Broken wrist, internal bleeding, cut across the ribs, one in the shoulder…” She rattled them off like they meant nothing, but with every injury she uttered, Aubrey blood pressure shot up just a little more.
“Are you all right?” he asked.
She shrugged. “I’m breathing.”
And Aubrey was thankful for that. “Can we speak somewhere more private?”
Taer shook her head. “I’ve only just started my shift.”
“Come to me later?” In my dreams?
Taer’s expression hardened, her eyes growing cold. A tangle of complex emotions crossed her face and she shook her head tightly once more.
“Taer?” someone called. Aubrey looked over to his right, seeing a large man standing there. His dark eyes were two daggers trained on his heart and Aubrey dropped his hand from Taer. He straightened up and faced the guy.
Taer stepped in front of Aubrey, attempting to shield him from view. “I’m coming.” Without turning around, she said to Aubrey, “I’ll see you later,” and walked towards the other male. Jealousy, something he hadn’t felt since he was a young man, shot through his body. Who was this other guy? And why did Aubrey care? It wasn’t as if Taer belonged to him.
Although she should. The thought had come out of nowhere. He didn’t want her to belong to him, did he? He wanted to get her flat on her back and begging him for more of what his body could give her, but that was it. Wasn’t it?
“Too much to fucking think about,” he muttered to himself, moving through the crowd which streamed around him like he was a stone in a river.
Aubrey left the Eye straight away, jumping back into his car and abruptly pulling out into the traffic. The driver he’d just cut off slammed on the horn. Aubrey flipped the guy off in the rear view mirror and accelerated, leaving the Honda driver staring at his Lexus’s vanity plates. Aubrey felt reckless and out of control and it was all because Taer might have another lover. He had never thought to ask her. He was just going to take what he wanted whether she was available or not, but seeing the other bastard had unnerved Aubrey.
Was he willing to fight for Taer?
The answer scared him more than the question.

*

It was close to three a.m. when the doorbell rang. Aubrey was still awake; his concern for Taer still had a firm grip on his mind. Strolling to the intercom on the wall, he pressed the button and waited. He wasn’t expecting anyone.
“Hello?” a voice asked after a few seconds.
“Taer?” Aubrey replied.
“Yeah, it’s me. Can I come in?”
Aubrey released the lock on the gate and strode towards the front door. As he opened it, Taer was closing the main gate on the other side of the courtyard. Propping himself against the door jamb, he waited for her to come to him. She’d changed out of her work uniform and was now wearing a black tank top that hugged her lithe frame and a pair of yoga pants. Her intense gaze never wavered as she moved towards him, until her eyes dropped to peruse his body. He straightened then, wanting her to get a good look. He’d changed out of his suit, and was wearing a pair of sweats and a tee. Nobody had seen him dressed so casually before. He was always working hard on portraying an image of power to his work associates and clients. But with Taer, he didn’t feel like he needed to keep up the act.
“How’s your shoulder?” he asked.
Taer winced when she shrugged. “Fine.”
He stared at her for a long, hard minute before stepping back and letting her into his house. He led her through the kitchen where he filled the kettle and set it to boil.
“Tea?” he asked.
Taer climbed into one of the tall stools set under the breakfast bar. “Got anything stronger?”
He smiled. Fuck, he liked this woman. “What’s your poison?”
“Vodka.”
Aubrey walked over to the freezer and pulled out the iced bottle of Goose he always kept in there. Collecting two glasses from the cupboard beside the fridge, he walked back over to her. Placing the glasses down, he took off the cap and poured them both half a glass. Taer took hers before he could offer it to her, swallowing down two-thirds of the clear liquid in one mouthful.
“Cheers,” he said, smirking, and taking a sip of his own drink. Taer took the sweating bottle and poured herself another drink. Aubrey raised an eyebrow at her. “Something bothering you?” He instantly regretted the question. Clearly something was troubling her, and he didn’t have to guess what that something was. Aubrey settled down on his elbows, leaning down to catch her eye, but she refused to look at him. “Sorry. What happened?”
Taer took a deep breath and winced. “It was bad. He almost killed me.” As she spoke, her voice became softer. “He talked about Adrian, and I almost lost it.”
“What made you stop and think about it rationally?”
Taer’s green eyes met his. They blazed with triumph. “You.”
Aubrey blinked dumbly. “Excuse me?”
“Your words pulled me back. I remembered what you told me about not being controlled by my emotions. As soon as I took them out of the equation, I was able to think clearly again.”
Aubrey kept his expression serious but on the inside he was puffing up with pride. He stood up again, taking a sip from his glass. “The shoulder injury, it happened before then, right?”
She nodded and swallowed the rest of her vodka. “Yeah. The bastard threw one of his daggers at me.”
“Will it heal?”
Taer shook her head. “Probably not.”
Darrion was lucky he was already dead otherwise Aubrey was going to put him in the ground himself. “Why did you come to me tonight, Taer?” he asked. “Here, to my house,” he clarified. “Why not just visit me in my dreams?”
Taer was silent. She reached for her glass, her hand shaking as she brought it to her lips. “I don’t want to do any dream walking for a little while.”
He frowned. “Because of Darrion?”
“Because of Darrion.” Aubrey’s returning smile made Taer’s brows rise. “What?”
He walked around the island bench, standing directly behind her and leaning down to run his nose along the same path his fingers had taken earlier. Goose bumps broke out on her skin, and her breathing hitched in her throat. Over her shoulder, Aubrey could see her fingers cinching shut around her glass, and he smirked. “I like having you here in the flesh rather than just in my dreams. It means I can do whatever I like to you.”
A small moan broke free of her mouth—a sound that was abruptly cut short. Taer’s shoulders tightened and she became stock-still. “I haven’t touched you,” she whispered.
Aubrey stopped what he was doing, her vow from when they were training ringing in his head with pain-staking clarity.
I’ll make you a deal, Aubrey. The day I voluntarily touch you—when we’re not training together—is the day I’ll let you fuck me.
He chuckled.
They were back to playing their games.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Author Spotlight & Giveaway: Alicia McCalla

It took thirty years for Alicia to accept her calling as a writer of "unusual stories." Always writing edgy tales that pushed the envelope.  She learned to hide her violent, controversial, heart-pumping,and tragically romantic stories from family and friends.

It wasn't until she joined a writing organization that she began to share her stories openly and take the plunge. Alicia writes for both new adults and adults with her brand of multicultural supernatural thrillers, urban fantasy, paranormal, and horror. Her stories always include strong women heroines who fight back, sometimes to the death.
Alicia's influences include Octavia Butler, LA Banks, Faith Hunter, Patricia Briggs and Laurell K Hamilton. 

Alicia is an activist in the movement towards diversifying Science fiction and Fantasy (#diversityinSFF). She created the first "State of Black Science Fiction 2012" blog tour, is an active member in the State of Black Science Fiction FaceBook group and has a ScoopIt page where she actively curates topics related to Afrofuturism, Black Science Fiction, Black Speculative fiction and Multicultural Science Fiction. 
Alicia is a native Detroiter who currently resides in metro Atlanta.  She works as a media specialist or school librarian  in a local school district. Alicia enjoys spending time with her husband and son.

Her first book for new adults, Breaking Free, is available in print or for immediate download. Her adult series mixes African-American women's fiction with dark urban fantasy. Check out the Soul Eater series.  

Sign-up  on www.aliciamccalla.com for free downloads, e-updates, sneak peeks, and coupons.

 Where to find Alicia...


 This is the third installment of the Soul Eater series.

Release date: June 15th

An ancient evil is drawn to the shores of America where good people have forgotten their history, power, and strength.

When Shania Moore’s dreams of a serial killer draining the souls of African American girls in a bizarre ritual turn out to be real, she knows her daughter with an unusual ability is in danger.

Shania packs up everything and flees from Detroit to Atlanta.  She doesn’t know that strength will be found in the arms of the white man whom she had lied to and left at the altar ten years earlier.

Deacon Kilgore does not know he’s a descendant from a Norse god and that he’s a guardian for an ancient African goddess.  When his beautiful ex-girlfriend shows up, he almost walks away. She had broken his heart and lied to him about aborting their baby. But when he sees the sweet spirited young girl with violet eyes reminding him of his dearly departed mother, he can’t help but defend them both. Can he forgive the woman who ripped his heart out?

There’s more than their daughter’s life at stake. If Shania and Deacon fail to thwart the ancient evil, the very fabric of existence as they know it will be destroyed.


Where to get a copy of "Rise of An African Elemental"

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00Y9JD8XE/ref=s9_simh_gw_p351_d1_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=desktop-1&pf_rd_r=1D82AHF0HZG646F8R44Z&pf_rd_t=36701&pf_rd_p=2079475242&pf_rd_i=desktop
 

Get the prequel box set of this series

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00RNNTXD2/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00RNNTXD2&linkCode=as2&tag=alimcc08-20&linkId=7LQMLXR3R2UXDUMC
























Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Author Spotlight: Lisa Medley

Writer, blogger, reader.

I’m a reader and writer of paranormal romance/urban fantasy novels about monsters in love, because monsters need love too.

A lover beasties of all sorts, we have a farm full of them in our SW MO home including:  one child, one husband, two dogs, two cats, a dozen hens, thousands of Italian bees and a guinea pig. Not so in love with the guinea pig.

Other facts:
  • The day job is at a community blood center for the past 14 years. (Yeah, I’m a vampire). I talk people into bleeding. On purpose.
  • Married to the same man for 24 years. (Plus six years of stalking. It wasn’t a crime then.)
  • Can do ten push ups IN A ROW! (subject to change)
  • Have a complete zombie apocalypse bug-out bag including a machete in my trunk at all times. Just. In. Case.
 
 

Where to find Lisa...


They see death. Can they share a life?

Ruth Scott can read the energy of every person she meets. Then she meets Deacon Walker. She can see his ice-blue eyes, his black hair, and his gorgeous face. But this beautiful stranger has no aura.

Deacon is just as unsettled by Ruth—and, having spent more than two hundred years ushering souls to Purgatory, Deacon is seldom shocked by anything. As he helps Ruth to understand her true nature, she awakens desires that he decided long ago a Reaper can’t afford.

A demon invasion forces Deacon to confront the darkness in his own past even as he fights to save the human souls he’s charged to protect. When he’s taken captive, his first concern is for Ruth. But Ruth just might be able to save herself—and the Reaper she can’t live without—if she can learn to wield her new-found powers.

Where to find "Reap & Repent"
  
http://amzn.to/1AvrNfb