Excerpt of Bound by Kira Saito

Punished Arelia LaRue Book #2 TEASER

 

Chapter 1

I just want you here…

 

 

     “But, I thought.” Lucus was frozen as he stared at me.  Uncertainty softened his strong features as he brushed away the lock of dark hair that had fallen over his right eye. Why didn’t he just get a haircut? “I assumed you were leaving.”

     “I can leave if you want me to.” I gave him a small smile as I took a step back. I didn’t want to let on that I was nervous or anything. I wanted answers and maybe some fried Oreos.

     “No, please, come in,” he said quickly as he moved aside making space for me to enter the room. “I’m going to do as you requested and put on a shirt.” He gave me a knowing wink. So, he had caught on that the sight of him shirtless was more than just a little distracting.

     “Thanks.” I attempted to gracefully stride into the spacious room and poured myself some overpriced cognac. A warm breeze wafted through the balcony window and the scent of fragrant jasmine filled my nostrils. 

     “I’m so proud of you,” whispered Erzulie as she hovered outside the balcony. Apparently, in the span of twenty minutes, she had already changed her outfit and was now dressed in a flowing, red dress and matching headscarf. Strands of thick, gold necklaces hung from her neck and her arms were adorned with delicate, wooden bracelets.

     “Not now Erzulie.” I was mortified that she chose to make another grand entrance at exactly this moment. The moment I was pretending to be totally calm and in control rather than a raving, mud-flinging lunatic that spoke to voodoo spirits.

     Of course, she ignored me and continued, “Jasmine is the flower of love, you know.”

     “Thanks for the random info,” I hissed praying that Lucus wouldn’t hear. I wasn’t completely ready to let him listen in on  my conversations with the spirits just yet. Even though he wasn’t exactly normal, I wasn’t prepared to expose all of my own craziness to him. Lucky for me, he was too busy hunting for a t-shirt within the massive, antique closet that sat at the other end of the room. 

     “You should always give love a chance my dear, even if it comes in unexpected forms.” She was giving me one of her motherly speeches again.

     “I’m not sure what I’m supposed to make of that ominous advice Erzulie,” I whispered as I inched towards the balcony and unsuccessfully tried to shut the heavy, lace curtains on her.

     She laughed delicately before continuing, “you do know what I mean, my child.”

     “No, I don’t. I don’t exactly see any epic romance developing here. I’m just sticking around because you asked me to.”

     “Sure you are my dear.” Her hazel eyes shone as she gave me a small wink and disappeared.

     “I thought you despised that.” Lucus eyed the glass in my hand as he put on a blue t-shirt and walked towards me.

     “I do,” I replied. I didn’t want to tell him that I needed something to calm down my nerves. I couldn’t get his speech out of my head. How was I supposed to act around him now?

     Lucus placed his smooth hand over mine, and took the crystal glass from me. He raised his other hand up to my cheek and grazed it softly with his fingertips. Consuming chills ran through my body, all the way from my split-ends to my non-pedicured toenails. His scent mixed with the aroma of sugary jasmine and cognac was undeniably intoxicating. His gentle breath was deliciously sweet as it made contact with my sweaty skin.

“There’s no reason to be anxious, I’m perfectly harmless,” he whispered softly. “The last thing I want to do is make you uncomfortable or hurt you in any way.” 

     “Sure.” I grabbed the glass from him, moved my cheek away from his hand and tossed back the cognac. “Gross! How can you actually like drinking this stuff?”

     A hint of a smile crossed his full lips. “You get used to a lot of things if you’re around long enough. You’d be surprised at the things you’re capable of as time passes.”

     “Well, I don’t think I’m going to get used to the fact that you’re basically a very old man.”

     “Is that the way you see me, as a very old man?” Lucus causally asked as he walked over to the heavy, wooden table and poured himself some absurdly expensive cognac. He studied me intently with his intense, dark eyes as he waited for me to answer.

     “I mean you don’t look like Mr. Dumpty or anything, but you’re just wearing a disguise to cover up who you really are,” I reasoned clutching the crystal glass just a bit too tightly while tugging on my hair.

     He let out a dry laugh and took a sip of cognac. “Aren’t we all?”

     “What’s that supposed to mean?” I raised an eyebrow.

     He shook his head and took a step closer. His sharp gaze saw right through me. “If you see me as a very old man, why didn’t you leave? What reason do you have to be here wasting your time?”

Bound
By Kira Saito

Genre: Paranormal YA

Blurb

Sixteen year old Arelia LaRue lives in New Orleans where the music is loud, voodoo queens inhabit every street corner, and the ghosts are alive and well. Despite her surroundings, all she wants is to help her Grand-mere Bea pay the rent and save up for college.

When her best friend Sabrina convinces her to take a well-paying summer job at the infamous Darkwood plantation, owned by the wealthy LaPlante family, Arelia agrees.

However, at Darkwood strange things start to happen, and gorgeous Lucus LaPlante insists that he needs her help. Soon, the powers that Arelia has been denying all her life, come out to play and she discovers mysteries about herself that she could have never imagined.

You can buy it here!

Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Bound-Arelia-Paranormal-Romance-ebook/dp/B0060EHJX6/ref=pd_rhf_gw_p_t_1

Smashwords
http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/101051

Author Bio


Kira is a magic junkie and loves writing YA paranormal romances. Some of her heroes include: Jack the Pumpkin King, Willy Wonka, Larry David, Princess Tiana, the vampire Lestat, Andy and her Maltese Costanza.

http://kirasaito.blogspot.com/

Twitter @KiraSaito

Excerpt: The Opera: The Tales from Frewyn

 

The Opera Tales from Frewyn

 

By Michelle Franklin

 

 

 

Blurb:

 

 

 

When due homage is paid to the heroes of Frewyn, what could possibly go wrong? 

The Frewyn Players at the Royal Theatre in Diras are looking for new material to perform when a famous director from Marridon arrives to impart a Marridon theatrical pastime that is certain to make them famous. An opera will be their new performance, one that glorifies Frewyn’s greatest heroes, but what begins as homage ends as mockery, and the play that would make them the greatest exhibition in Frewyn might instead make them the Den Asaan’s most merited enemy.

 

 

 

Book on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Tales-from-Frewyn-The-Opera-ebook/dp/B005TL7QMA

 

Book on Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/94632

 

Twitter: @MrsDenAsaan & @DenAsaan

 

Haanta Series site: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/94632 

 

Author Bio: 

Michelle Franklin is a woman of moderate consequence who writes many books about giants, romance and chocolate.

Twitter: @MrsDenAsaan

An excerpt from The Opera

The Announcement – Chapter 2

The placards and posters announcing Mad Queen Maeve’s tenth iteration were taken away and another announcement was set in its place, one for a new play of certain distinction, whose book was written by Frewyn’s champion auteur and whose songs were composed by the Triumvirate’s leading maestro. Many began to bustle about the Royal Theatre in hopes of catching a glimpse of rehearsals or hearing an early piece of music, but the surprise would be well-kept if only to excite interest, and the spectators must therefore wait until the projected opening night.

While the chief of Frewyn’s denizens were left to imagine all the wondrous machinations taking place within the auspices of the theatre walls, two of the keep’s residents were treated to an accidental and early prospect of the goings-on. Although many of the kingdom’s nobility milled about the parapets of Diras Castle, determined to see the rehearsals by leaning over the merlons of the western battlements, Teague and Mureadh were the first two to discern the character of the new play. They were engaged to spend the evening with Connors and Nerri, and after a long day of training in the keep’s yard and running his majesty’s errands, they had cleansed themselves in the barracks and were on their way back to the soldier’s mess from using the facilities when an argument taking place outside the theatre entrance caught their attention. They stopped once quitting the latrine tower, hid behind an adjacent wall to screen themselves from view, and overheard the director of the piece according someone a most stern reproof.

The remonstrance was understood well enough: something about the new poster was incorrect, someone’s name was not quite as large as it should have been, someone else’s name was far too eclipsing, the colours were too strong, the style too fanciful, the printing too plain, and upon the whole, the announcement must be entirely remade. This was of course refuted by its illustrator, but even the carefully-chosen paints and detailed illustration of the principle characters would not do; the size of the names must reflect the director’s brilliance, the art must portray a realistic genius, and nothing less would be tolerated.

When the argument had done, the assertions heated on the director’s side and the refutations muted on the artist’s, the director returned to the theatre to officiate the remainder of the day’s practice and the illustrator was left to sulk and grumble. He remarked his work, and after a moment’s consideration, humphed and placed the poster onto the billboard. Bitterness and anger were what was drove his actions, but the satisfaction in seeing his glorious work displayed on the billboard of the Royal Threatre even for a few minutes together before someone should come and take it down was all his triumph. He stood back from it after having secured it in place, folded his arms across his chest, and spied the poster with a complacent grin. The names were too small to be sure, but the images of the three main characters were the centerpiece and glory of the work.

A moment passed and the illustrator was suddenly called into the theatre. One of the sets must be repainted, and without a thought, he hastened inside, leaving the poster on the billboard for Teague and Mureadh to investigate. They crawled out from their position behind the wall of the latrine tower and before they had taken a few steps were struck with the sudden shock of what the advertisement depicted: a fair-haired and large-breasted woman dressed in little more than a few garnishings was being held by an enormous and fur-clad beast, one with terrible fangs, unforgiveable underbite, and glowing red eyes; behind the gruesome ogre and his swooning damsel was a handsome king, riding a bucking horse and waving a golden broadsword in the air. What the image had meant to suggest was clear enough by the commander’s distinguishable attributes, by the Den Asaan’s ferocious features, and by the king’s handsome aspect, but the title across the top of the piece secured all their worries. If the heading of the play was not enough to convince them of this opera being a farce, the tagline of “Two hearts, two warring nations, one forbidden love” written across the bottom certainly was. The names of the directors, writers and everyone involved were unimportant where the subject of the play was concerned, and Mureadh cringed in aversion to think of what their superior officers and the king would say while Teague only sighed and shook his head.

When the first wave of horror had done with them, Teague and Mureadh stepped closer to examine the poster, Teague carefully collecting the names of every person responsible for this nonsense -that he might relay them to the Den Asaan when they should no doubt be demanded- and Mureadh unable to do anything other than gawp in dread.

“Well,” Teague said, after a few moments of silence, “It is painted very well, even if the colours are incorrect. He’s obviously a gifted artist. It’s a shame that his talent was used for this.”

Mureadh was far too horrified to reply: his superior officer, one well-known for his intolerance of inanity, was being mocked, and his mate, over whom the giant was particularly possessive, was being debased. Such an image was certain to offend and incite the Den Asaan, and Mureadh scrambled to remove it from the billboard before anyone else should see it and laugh at its subject.

 

 

Kiss And Tell Tour: Stacey Kennedy

Will destiny be enough to break her free of a lifetime of secrets?

Knox, the Seeker, has waited two hundred years for his Watcher and now he’s found her. Paxtyn, however, is unwilling to join him. The more he tries to prove himself to her, the more she pushes him away.

Paxtyn has spent a lifetime keeping her secret hidden from the world, but now, she must confront these deadly visions head on. When a string of murders brings her intoNew Orleans, she must come to terms with her personal demons and use her gift to communicate with spirits to discover who has ended their lives.

*WARNING:  Explicit sex between a sassy Watcher and a sexy Seeker, and a ceremony that will certainly raise eyebrows!

BUY LINK

Teaser:

There was nothing odd about the woman in her late twenties. Her look was exactly what you’d expect in downtownCincinnati—chic. She wore clothing that looked more like something off the runways inNew Yorkthan from around here—her high stilettos were fantastically

matched with her cute rose cocktail dress. The black lace shawl wrapped around her shoulders indicated it was chilly, but being that it was June, Paxtyn knew it was more for show than anything else.

And she could appreciate the look. But at the same time, she wished the woman had decided on different footwear. Then, those fantastic heels wouldn’t be about to go to waste.

Paxtyn’s hands closed around the chair as she prepared herself for what she was about to see. Her visions of the past always came the same.

She knew what the outcome would be and it wouldn’t be a good one.

Normally, watching the moment a life was lost was hard for her, but tonight, it was more than that, it was gut-wrenching. The woman looked so much like her—athletic. Even her shoulder-length curly hair was the same, except were hers was jet black; Paxtyn’s was strawberry blonde. But the one thing this woman didn’t have was Paxtyn’s turquoise

eyes.

How many times had she heard “you have the most beautiful eyes”?

The line had run its course and she was sick to death of hearing it. The woman stopped at the curb, digging into her last season’s Gucci handbag and pulled out a cell phone as the street light beamed down. A smile grazed her face as she apparently received a text of interest. She raised her head, looking quickly, waiting for a moment to cross. When the cars cleared, she stepped off the curb, not bothering to look up as she continued to dawdle on her cell phone.

Paxtyn wanted to stand up from her chair, yell to this woman to stop, bang on the window for her to not move, but it was pointless. There was nothing she could do for her.

Within three steps, the life of this woman was forever changed.

A loud screech of the car’s tires, followed by a terrified scream, then the woman was about to discover those Christian Louboutin heels were going to be the only thing left of her.

She really didn’t have a chance. The car was going too fast for her to survive.

The moment the wheels locked, the woman’s ghost stood next to her broken body, shocked, scared and confused. The man who’d hit her jumped out of the car and, when he saw her body, smiled gloriously.

Paxtyn shuddered. Who smiled at such a thing?

Dying wasn’t how everyone thought it was. There wasn’t a flash of golden light with the soul drifting off to heaven. Most times, the spirit stayed, lingered. Couldn’t comprehend what had happened to them. And Paxtyn had witnessed moments of the past just like this a thousand times over.

“Earth to Pax,” Tate said loudly, snapping his fingers, completely unaware of the horror Paxtyn had just seen.

She glanced away from the window, but before she met his gaze, she did what she always did, found the smile to hide it all. “Sorry.” She laughed, but even to her it sounded shaky. The name was Paxtyn really, but Tate opted for the shorter form and she never minded.

“If I didn’t know you better, I’d think you were a nut,” Tate said.

She laughed in agreement. He was right, if he did know her better, he’d believe such a thing. But he probably knew her the best out of anyone. Brought together at a welcoming party in their early days at theUniversityofCincinnati, they’d immediately hit it off.

A guy like Tate wasn’t to be passed over, and she hadn’t hesitated to try to snatch him up. It wasn’t his all-star bod, or his captivating baby blues, even those luscious lips that presently smiled at her that first caught her eye. It was his kind heart and loyalty. He was about as damn solid of a guy as she’d ever met.

They’d gone a round of it once after a blasted drunken night at a sorority shindig, but the next day, they’d woke up in bed, naked, and laughed. That was the end to anything romantic between them.

But what they had was better. Stronger. She could count on Tate for just about anything and there was no one else in the world who loved her more. Now, their relationship had blossomed into something found between a brother and sister. That was Tate, her protector.

Who just so happened to give her ear a flick. “Fuck, girl! Maybe you shouldn’t drink anymore.”

“I’m fine,” she said, grimacing from the throb of her ear lobe and shot him a look. It usually didn’t take this long to snap out of one of her horror moments.

She took a big gulp to drink away the sight of what she’d witnessed and kept drinking till the buzz settled in. Wasn’t ever a gift to see such horrible things, but one she saw often. Mom and Pa, back inWyoming, had spent thousands on her as a child on testing and treatments to find out what was wrong with her. Why, as a child, she’d say that she was watching people die. She still couldn’t imagine what was going through their heads, knowing their child had this disability. But by the time she reached twelve, she realized it was best to keep her mouth shut. It ended the doctor appointments and saved her from being medicated or institutionalized.

Now, it was just something she lived with—suffered through. So, she put on her normal face and glanced around the pub. The crowd tonight was loud, as was the band blasting out the soft rock beats.

The O’Bryons Irish Pub had been their life while they’d bunkered down at University, and she guessed it had stuck with them, because they still came here every Friday night. Of course, it had only been two years since they’d completed their degrees so they really hadn’t had much time to grow and move on.

Tate, with his BS in Criminal Justice, had found a job right out of college with the Cincinnati Police Department. Paxtyn had majored in Business. Basically, because she liked the idea of being locked in an office where she could stare at blank walls and not have to look out windows or be anywhere she might have a vision.

When she’d seen the ad for Financial Specialist at the Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce, she’d jumped on it and, with some luck, she’d actually gotten it. Now, she spent her days glued to a computer, lost in numbers. As much as the job got to her, became a total bore, she couldn’t

really complain—it paid well.

Tate worked three times as hard as she did and his pay was nowhere in the numbers as hers.

“Looks like you have an admirer,” Tate said, drawing her back from her thoughts.

Paxtyn followed his gaze to see that she was in fact being watched, and the moment she met the man’s gaze she was locked in.

He sat off to the far side of the bar with a glass of brandy in front of him. He was older than the others in the pub, but it didn’t make him look out of place—it made him look distinguished. He wore a black dress shirt rolled up at the sleeves with the front unbuttoned showing a bit of smooth chest. His finger slowly rimmed the edge of the glass as his gaze was glued with hers. And those eyes were mesmerizing. Grey with a dark-steeled edge to them. But that seemed to be his thing.

He was all edge—hard and extreme. His features were made up of straight lines, including the squared jaw, high predominant cheek bones, perfectly shaped lips and even his mocha hair was buzzed with a hard look.

Tate knocked Paxtyn’s arm a good one. “Drool much.”

“Over him?” She nodded toward the hunk. “Doubt it.”

“Sure you weren’t.”

~*~


 

Stacey Kennedy’s novels are lighthearted fantasy with heart squeezing, thigh-clenching romance, and even give a good chuckle every now and again. But within the stories you’ll find fast paced action, life threatening moments and a big bad villain that needs to be destroyed. Her urban fantasy/paranormal and erotic romance series have hit Amazon Kindle and All Romance Ebooks Bestseller lists. If she isn’t plugging away at her next novel, tending to her two little ones, she’s got her nose deep in a good book. She lives in Ontario, Canada with her husband.

Be sure to drop her a line at www.staceykennedy.com, Facebook and Twitter, she loves to hear from her readers.