That being said, I'm about to get even busier. As most know, Sasha and I got married back in March. Come July 10th, we're throwing a little party for family and friends to celebrate the marriage. It's a glorified backyard BBQ rather than a proper reception (what is a proper reception???), but that's how we like it :)
But the bulk of preparing for it is on me, since Sasha has to work, so I'm not going to be around much starting about mid-week this week. So enjoy the piece and quiet while it lasts :3
I am also stressed up to HERE with IRL problems, largely two of our cats that keep getting sick. I have to take one into the vet yet again today, and have been crying off and on b/c that's how I deal with everything (much to the frustration of me and everyone who has to put up with me ^^)
I had been meaning to do a newsletter and other update/what's happening stuff, but I'm afraid this post is all you're going to get for a bit. On that note, have some book news (and an excerpt)
Tournament of Losers is getting an audio version. I don't have release date info yet, but it should be ready in another month or two. And hopefully this will be the start of LT3 slowly getting back into audio, we've really missed doing them.
My July release is, of course, The Pirate of Fathoms Deep. I really hope peeps enjoy reading Lesto's story. He was a hell of a lot of fun to write, I've never made secret that he's one of my favorite parts of Harken verse.
My August release is the ebook of my yaoifix serial, Wriggle & Sparkle. This one was hella fun for a lot of reasons. A kraken shifter. A unicorn shifter. I really tried to push myself on shifters in this one, and let me tell you I now know more about squids and octopuses and such than I ever thought I would. I can also finally say I've written tentacle porn. I take my victories where I can.
My September release is the sequel to SotK that took me far longer to write than I'd wanted. But I am pleased with the results and I hope Shield of the Dragon proves worth the wait. Ken has always been one of my favorite characters to write, and we know how much I love my DwtD dragons. I also hella fucking love the new covers for this series :D
I have too many fucking books coming out. But Unfinished Business is my October release, an anthology with some other awesome peeps. It revolves around paranormal investigators, which I'm always here for :3 My particular story is about a vampire who finds a dead body on his lawn, and the hot (human) detective who shows up to solve the mystery.
And it is with an excerpt of that story with which I leave you.
I hope everyone is having a lovely week ^_^
From Godfrey and the Detective
Godfrey found the body when he went to go for a walk.
It was a moonless night, his sleepy, snobby neighborhood even quieter than usual. The body was lying just under the hedges on the house-facing side, which meant nobody on the street would have noticed it. The poor man hadn't been dead long, to judge by the smell. Six hours, maybe eight, Godfrey's nose wasn't the best for that. Channing was the morbid one. Godfrey was the nerdy one, or so he was often told in a long-suffering tone.
The worst thing about that body, however, was that it only faintly smelled of blood. Godfrey didn't need to get any closer to it to know that if he did, he'd find the body had been drained.
Which could mean one of a whole list of problems. Hopefully that problem fell under the heading of stupid humans and not goddamn vampires, but figuring out the answer wasn't his problem.
He called 911 first, then called Channing's phone and left a message. Of course Channing wasn't around the one night Godfrey needed him to be sitting around lazy or bored. Nevermind. He'd deal with it himself until Channing bothered to show.
When the phone calls were finished, he tucked his phone into his pocket and went back in the house, since he definitely wasn't going for a walk now.
The cops showed up a short time later, and not long after their circus show started, the neighbors came out to watch. After answering the cops' few questions, he retreated to his study and quickly drank one of his emergency packets of blood—and just in time, as he heard footsteps coming toward him that definitely weren't any of the cops already there. The smell of expensive cologne—something warm and fragrant, notes of cinnamon and vanilla, mingled not unpleasantly with leather and gun oil and coffee—struck him moments before the man stepped into the room.
And the look of him was even better than the smell, though not what Godfrey had expected given such an expensive scent. The man was scruffy, his clothes wrinkled like he'd been in them too long, eyes ringed with shadows of exhaustion that looked like bruises against his white skin. But those eyes were a beautiful shade of smoke gray, framed by black glasses and slightly too long, messy black hair. His nose was slightly too large for his face and looked like it had been broken at least once, and he had the teeth of someone who hadn't been able to afford to take care of them when he was younger. Bloody hell, the whole came together in a distractingly attractive package. Godfrey honestly couldn't say if the situation was better or worse for having a hot detective in charge. He stood and smoothed down his shirt and slacks before stepping around the desk and extending a hand. "Godfrey West."
The detective shook his hand, eyes pinching for the barest moment, probably at how cool Godfrey's hand was. He wasn't 'cold as a fucking corpse' as his last human lover had so charmingly put it toward the end, but vampires did run a degree or two cooler than humans. "Detective Shelby McClain. I had a few questions about the man you found this evening."
He opened up a little notebook and started with all the usual sorts of questions law enforcement types always asked—the same ones his compatriots already had, and then a few more.
Godfrey almost didn't mind. McClain was so ridiculously good looking. He looked like his mother had been a super sexy librarian and his father an action star cop (or the other way around). Up close he had freckles all over, and the black, chunky glasses were a crowning touch. Godfrey wanted to do obscene, filthy things to him.
Bloody hell, it had been too long since he'd last socialized with the world if he was this turned on and distracted by a human.
"You're absolutely certain you've never seen him before?"
"I admit I didn't look terribly close and it is rather dark out, but what I could see was not remotely familiar," Godfrey replied. "I don't leave my house much, to be honest. I have a small circle of friends I see infrequently, and I work from home. Most of my time spent out of the house is either running errands or taking walks through the nearby park. The last stranger I spoke with was a gentleman standing in line behind me at the coffee shop on Crescent. They were short-staffed and moving slowly; we chatted about the weather and how much we both dislike the library renovations. That was on Wednesday, roughly… oh, seven at night, give or take."
"Coffee? At seven in the evening?"
"I work from home, and my job requires unusual hours. I wake up when the rest of the world is going home for the night." And when the stupid sun had gone down sufficiently. Lord, he did not miss his younger days when he couldn't leave the safety of his home before absolute dark.
McClain nodded. "Is that why your windows are all blacked out and this room has no windows at all?"
"My bedroom doesn't have windows either. The house was like that before I bought it, but I admit it was a perk because yes, it's easier to sleep and keep to my schedule if I can block out the sunlight."
"What exactly is this work from home night job of yours?"
"I'm a translator. I translate books, reports, lessons, you name it. But a lot of my work is facilitating conversations. Someone in China speaking to someone in the United States, for example." Or more accurately, a vampire born in the early Ming Dynasty trying to communicate with a nineteen-fifties United States born werewolf on their latest treatise regarding wolfsbane and the potential restorative properties in shifters suffering from chronic shift pain.
But if Godfrey tried to explain that to the lovely human before him, he'd wind up locked up somewhere for an unstable mind or murdered or more likely both. Lord knew he'd seen it happen before to other supernaturals.
"This man couldn't have been a client? Or related to a client? Does the name Harold Whistler sound familiar to you?"
Whistler? Damn. "No, it doesn't. I do know a Harold, but his surname is Montgomery and he lives in Nebraska." With his vampire wife and their werewolf lover.
"I see." McClain closed his notebook and slipped it back into the beat-up but well-fitted leather jacket he was wearing. "That's all the questions I have for now, Mr. West." He frowned briefly at his notes. "What the hell kind of name is Godfrey?"
"That's a question, and rather a rude one," Godfrey replied. "It's a family name." A family of one vampire who had picked the name a few centuries ago and never been inclined to changed it, but details details.
"My apologies." McClain smiled fleetingly, and if that wisp was anything to go by, Godfrey would never survive seeing it cranked to full. "I've seen and heard a lot of names in my business, but yours stands out." He held out a business card. "We'll be in touch if we think of further questions. If you remember anything, or anything suspicious or unusual happens, call me at once."
"I'll do that, Detective. Thank you. I hope you solve your case."