Odds and Ends and Photography

Good Saturday morning my fellow readers and writers!  

Not to forget you lovers of photography! 😉

Today I have to say:

ARGH!  They STILL haven’t answered!  

Oh my Gods the wait is killing me!   I know that “you will receive an answer within two weeks” is better than “it can take us as long as 6 months to get back to you” but holy crap.  I think I could deal with that better than the compulsive email checking I’ve been doing the last few days.

Thank the Gods for getting out of the house last night!  It was my son’s last hockey game of the season and I can’t usually go to the games but I promised I’d be there last night.  So off Peter and I went.  It was a good game and, I think, it was Peter’s first non-Pro game.  He enjoyed it.   The boys tied the game at 2 and Ben played well.  Lordy he’s tall!  I mean he’s got 2 or 3 inches on me now but put him on skates and he’s over 6 feet.  I suppose that coming from tall parents it’s to be expected but I do think it’s amusing watching my ex-husband out there (coach) among all these teenage boys and being dwarfed by some of them, including his son.  

If we hadn’t left George (my laptop, yes he has a name, maybe I’ll tell you why some day) wrapped up nice and snug in his bag, I’d have been checking compulsively all night long.  Even when we got home I deliberately left him off.  That was a spend-time-with-Peter thing but it was a saving grace.

So, I wait still, even a rejection would be nice at this point.  With an explanation would be good.  I know my style isn’t for everyone but someone will see it and scoop it because they know people will love it… right?

Last night we had some weather but nothing like they promised.  It left some *nearly* frozen water droplets on the windshield of the car, just outside of the arc of the wipers.  Me, being me, I have my camera ever present and I thought this was a perfect opportunity to play with the ‘sparkle’ feature.  I took half a dozen pictures, trying to capture the drops with the light…as we were driving.  Can you imagine what the drivers of the oncoming cars thought every time the flash went off?  😀  Might’ve been a tad inconsiderate of me but I did try not to take the pics when any were too close. 

In any case, here are my favourites:

I got my timing down et voila!  Captured the street light!

And another beauty of a shot:

This was as we were coming up to our first intersection.  I wanted to capture a traffic light, to see what the different lamp would do.  Not a lot as it turns out, *points at the red*  BUT the clarity of the traffic light with its back to us is awesome.  *adopts Dharma’s (Dharma & Greg, TV show) father’s voice*  It’s far OUT, man!  Peter said it almost looks like an alien invasion, space lights and stars.  It’s a beautiful picture in an odd kind of way.  *laughs*

Now, on to my favourite macros:

Last fall we put out peanuts for the squirrels.  This spring we’re digging up the pita quartz “mulch” and found some still intact shells.  I put it on an old white sweater (one my Gramma used to wear!) and snapped a photo.  I love the detail, the mountains and valleys, the scraps of dirt.  

My bedspread was hanging on the line (we’re trying to air it out, it’s somewhat toxic.  Not easy to do just on the weekends) and we love the colours in it so it just made sense to see what happened with the macro setting.  I like the way the focus fades in and out here and there and the sunlight on the fabric.  It doesn’t look quite as gold this close up though.  

This is the inside of a Toronto Maple Leafs toque.  The colour is amazing!  Which is the same reason I took the next picture…

Purple!  LOVE the purple!  Guess what it is.  😀

 

 

 

Did you get it right?  hehehe   This part of the towel was more in shadow than the first part.  

Switching to the more natural elements of my life.  There are some DAMN interesting things to photograph.

I’ve been picking up rocks since I was a kid.  Kept a few, got rid of a couple metric tonnes I’m sure.  But this is one of the strangest, coolest ones I have EVER seen.  I love the fossils.  I love the lines and shapes.  I love the shadows and light.   Even the texture (and I’m a massive texture snob, I can’t help it) is phenomenal.

And speaking of texture, that’s the sand on the beach at Grand Bend.  Isn’t it gorgeous?  Peter calls it little teeny tiny bits of glass.

believe this is quartz.  It shows most of the properties of a sedimentary rock but there’s, overall, a lot of quartz in it.  (And some research shows that quartz appears in metamorphic, sedimentary, and igneous rocks. So I’m right on both counts *laughs*)

This one had an unexpected visual when I took the photo – it sparkles!  It looked like a dull, ringed stone.  I think it’s an intrusive rock but I’m not entirely sure.  

And the last picture is the most visually interesting piece of limestone I’ve seen in a long time.

Way cool eh?

Anyway, Peter’s wandering around waiting to take me for a walk so off I go.  Have a gre- Oh yeah!

I reached the end of my re-read of Demon Plague and now I can get back to writing!  It left off at the beginning of a one-on-one battle so I get to write a whack of violence.

Yee-haa!

Muah! Have a wonderful weekend.

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Hell… Christian? Maybe.

Okay, so here I am, fresh from scrubbing my bathroom, about to talk about Hell and how I see it in my book, and I’m in the mood for deep, sultry, country boy voices in my music.  Travis, Toby, Tim, Randy, maybe a little Alan.  Definitely some Vince; how sad it is that I only have one song by Mr. Gill.  It’s funny that this topic makes me want country ballads about deep love and special bars where everyone from the girl next door to that girl for sale comes to drink and dance.  

Maybe it’s a safe haven, hmm?  

And I have to say, housework is its own special hell.  Especially cleaning the bathroom.  The things that go on in there… *shudders*  

But it’s done now, all sparkly and, unfortunately, smelly from the cleaner.  I have Multiple Chemical Sensitivities which means that I have to be really careful about the cleaners I use and how much.  So normally, spot cleaning is done.  But my Mum says that “housework is like shoveling sand – you shift some, more comes along.”  The bathroom needed a thorough scrub down this time. 

Dishes need done but that’s after blog and during Big Bang Theory.  My inner geek is totally hard up for last night’s episode – Leonard Nimoy makes an appearance as Spock!  A vocal appearance, but it counts!

Well, as my current song says:  A little less talk and a lot more action!

On to the blog:

Hell!

There are so many ways Hell is written about.  Dante had his Nine Circles; Virgil talked about the glory of Rome in The Aeneid although to Aeneas, Hell was in the journey; Sartre used one another, humans without the trapping of our outer selves, to depict true Hell in his post-WWII book No Exit. 

Dante's Inferno

Me, I see Hell as a Realm unto itself.  My imagination incorporates Dante’s Circles, to a degree.  His are labeled by sin, as you can see by this picture I found on http://hewitt.wikispaces.com.  Mine is more hierarchical.  (Yeah, I am big on hierarchy *laughs*)  The deeper you go, from the outer rings into the final (nine, I like that number, thank you Dante), the stronger the Demons get, the more intense the punishments get.  I can’t say that it gets hotter because my Hell isn’t about fire and brimstone… entirely.  

My first Circle is a copy of this world but one that’s been devastated and nearly leveled by [what appears to be] war.  It’s the image of what today’s world would look like if all the Angels and Demons clashed swords and fought their war now. In an outright way, rather than through the actions of Man.  The closest commercial visual I can think of is the movie Constantine, when Keanu’s Character visit’s Hell to see what’s what with the twin sister.

The Second is a barren, dusty wasteland.  There’s nothing but Sahara-like desert for as far as anyone can see.  Winking in the sun in the distance is the gate to the next one.  A couple football fields away, or so, it’s not so easy to get to.  This Circle is special for Supernaturals.  They are stripped of everything but their humanity.   The trick is to both stay sane AND make it to the gate.    

Oh… and have I mentioned the Minotaur?  A fun little challenge thrown in for my Wolves tossed in by the Demon behind all the attacks.l

The Third is a polar opposite: “Verdant green fields rolled gently into the distance where a large tree overlooked a small cottage.”  It’s a total mindfuck among the daisies.  In the Third Circle all your worst fears come to pass.  This Circle took a LOT of thought for me.   For most Wolves, most Lycan Supes, being wholly alone is their worst fear.   But I couldn’t do that fear for both Chelle and Liam.  And for Anna that’s secondary.  It took me days to come up with challenges for each of them.  For Liam it was the loss of Anna.  For Chelle it was not only being totally alone, totally cut off, it was the destruction of the pack and her living well past that, completely alone.  And Anna… Anna is special.  For her it was the Dark tipping the scales and plunging the world and all the people on it into destruction and horrifying chaos. 

When they hit the Fourth Circle, where their nemesis resides, and are taken directly to her bower.   It’s lush, sensual, sexy.  Of course it’s a trap.

Before they even get there though, they are discussing ways to circumvent the trip:

Chelle nodded and turned to Anna.  “The Demons.  Surely we can just kill them all.”

Anna gave Chelle an incredulous look.  “Are you mad?  Do you have any idea how many demons there are?  And if we took the Dark we’d have to do the Light, then do you know what would happen?”  She was talking with her hands moving in large gestures, her voice rising, by the end of it.

Chelle looked annoyed.  “How many can there be?  We’re going into their home, let’s just kill them.”

Anna stared at her for a moment then started ticking things off on her fingers.  “The Talmud lists more than seven million demons.  Christianity has a hundred and thirty million-plus demons.  Then there are the Jinn in Islam, the Mara in Buddhism, and the Vetalas, Yakshas, Bhutas and Pishachas in the Hindu beliefs.  As far as Angels go…There are twelve Angelic orders in Christianity and there are the ones in Judaism and let’s not even get into-“

“Okay okay!  There are too many to kill.”  Chelle threw up her hands in surrender and flung herself against the back of the seat, watching Hertfordshire pass by.

Chelle is a warrior with a, sometime, barbarian view to things: Kill the enemy, be done with it.  So, to her, it makes sense to just kill the damn (haha!) things and get past this, move on with life.  She wants to fight their way to the head.

However, Anna has a point: the numbers are staggeringly high.  So, go to the source, stop the flow of power and the rest will take care of itself.   

Or a new order will take place.

In this case, cutting off the power will stop the attacks.  

Hopefully.

So, what is your view of Hell?  What do you think awaits those who deserve to go there?  IS there a Hell?  

Me, I’m off to do more housework.  The dishes won’t wash themselves.  While the carpets may get vacuumed while I’m away, the dirt on the linoleum won’t levitate and find its way to the trash can.

Have a great day!  I think tomorrow’s blog will be about fun with macros in my photos.  😀

It’s All Greek to Me!

Good morning!

Although perhaps by the time I get everything sorted it’ll be afternoon  *laughs*  My pain levels are climbing and it’s a little distracting.  (I live with 8 chronic health conditions, five of which are pain related)

Back to my own work today!  I did enjoy reviewing Ninfa’s book though, I adore her writing.  

And, as you may have guessed, today we’re talking about languages.  Greek, Latin and Gaelic.  Those of you who know anything about Gaelic will discover that I seem to have managed to mix Scottish and Irish within the same half a page.  I wonder if it’s too late to change it….  

Nah, it’s not published yet, should be good to go.

The Greek  

You may have noticed when I was talking about the characters that I have been labeling them as Alpha, Beta, etc.  Basic Pack hierarchy starts with a leader, a second-in-command and goes down from there to the lowest in the Pack.  And in the case of a few of my youngest characters, some who haven’t placed yet.  You want a place in the pack order, you earn it.  You want to move up, you knock the next highest person out of their place on the ladder. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks to Mrdonn.org, here is a photo of the Greek alphabet.  Twenty-four letters long, it figures that there would be 24 positions open.  However, in Liam and Anna’s Pack there is room for more than one person in each position below Gamma.  Fights that come to a standstill will leave you with two Kappas for example.  

It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense but there it is. 😀  So Lucy, who got torn apart by the Mayan demon-god a few posts ago is a middle of the road member.  Perhaps she had the potential to move up.  Perhaps she didn’t, we’ll never know now eh?

That is the only Greek in my books.  *laughs* I think it’s all I could handle.

The Gaelic

I love Gaelic. I love the way it sounds, so melodic.  I would love to learn it.  Scottish Gaelic, given that that’s where my roots are and it’s the country I’d most love to visit.  If I was ever presented with one trip, anywhere in the world, it’d be Scotland, regardless of the season.

Can you tell I love it? 😉

The first thing I went looking for is “my beloved.”  (and now I’m typing with one hand because my cat decided he wanted attention and is draped over my shoulder!  He needs his back feet supported by more than my boobs apparently)

[Ridiculous cat!]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have it in Irish Gaelic in the book:  Grádhág.  In Scottish it’s “a ghraidh”, “a rùn” or “a leannain”, all of which are in the vocative tense (addressing the person directly) which is what I want.  It left me confused that there would be three terms for the same thing but those are loose translations.  Deeper research reveals that “a ghraidh” is “my darling” or just “darling” and “a leannain” is “lover” or “sweetheart.”  If anyone can tell  me what “a rùn” means specifically, I’d be grateful.  

I love the term “my beloved.”  It conveys such a wealth of emotion and depth of devotion.  

Tha gaol agam ort.” Liam says to Anna.  (Hah GEUL AH-kum orsht) She thinks it’s beautiful, even without knowing the meaning.  It means “I love you.”

He teaches her to say Tha gaol agam ort-fhèin.” (Hah GEUL AH-kum orsht-HEH-een)  It means “I love you too.”  

Then he tells her to go find out for herself what it means.  *laughs*  

In my blog about the bad guys we talked about the Caer Kirra, (Fortress of the Dark Lady) aka the  Naethar Nimhe (poisonous snake).  

I think that’s it for my Gaelic. It’s a difficult language to find translations for.  You have to be careful to make sure you’re getting either the Irish or the Scottish and keep it consistent.  There are translators out there but, again, you have to know what you’re looking for.  I would love to learn it. 😀 But it’d be so much easier with a person than a program, I think.  

The Latin

This language is a challenge and a half!  I think the Elvish I used in one of my other books was easier!  

I do have a flair for the dramatic, however and the Lord’s Prayer in Latin worked beautifully to attempt to chase away a group of Nepilim:

 
PATER noster, qui es in cœlis;
sanctificatur nomen tuum:
Adveniat regnum tuum;
fiat voluntas tua,
sicut in cœlo, et in terra.
Panem nostrum cotidianum da nobis hodie:
Et dimitte nobis debita nostra,
sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris:
et ne nos inducas in tentationem:
sed libera nos a malo.


It certainly made the group of Fallen Angel offspring flinch.  But it didn’t make them go away.  So Anna resorted to something stronger.  More… ethereal help.  She appealed directly to Gabriel:

Anna, meanwhile, kept setting fire to them.  But there were scores to deal with and she could see that everyone was getting tired.  She tried one more time to ask for help.  “Gabriel! Please help me save my brethren.  Please lend me your sword.”  Her words cracked on a sob.

 

Chapter Twenty-One

 

Suddenly Anna felt a great warmth at her back.  She could see the faint outlines of feathered wings around her Mate and Gamma.  She relaxed marginally then found herself compelled to start speaking.  “Te Gladi, Vos Gladias, trea Nomine Sancto, Albrot, Abracadabra, Jehova elico.  Estote meum castelumque praesidium contra omnium hostes, conspicuusque, in quisque magiceum opum.  Nomemo Sancto Saday, qui est in imperium magnum, et his alio nomine:  Cados, Cados, Cados, Adonai, Elohi, Zena, Oth, Ochimaneul, primoque ultimo…”

Anna took a breath and let it out on a sigh, with the question, “What am I doing?”

A voice whispered through her mind.  “Conjuring Gabriel’s sword.  Sapientia, Via, Vita…”

Anna repeated the words and continued.  “Sapientia, Via, Vita, Virto, Principio, Oso, Oratie, Splendero, Luce, Sol, Fono, Gloria, Mono, Porta, Vite, Lape, Scipio, Sacredo, Pravo, Messiah, Gladi in omnium meum negotia regnas et in illos res quem meresistunt, vincite.”   Anna screamed the last word in desperation, “Amen!”   Her hands were suddenly wrapped around the hilt of a huge sword.  The tip dipped a little as she adjusted to the weight. 

The sword of Gabriel is an awesome thing.   I found the conjuration in A Dictionary of Angels including the fallen angels by Gustav Davidson.  The English translation is as follows:

I conjure you, O Sword of Swords, by the three Holy Names, Albrot, Abracadabra and Jehova. Be my fortress and defence against all enemies, visible and invisible, in every magical work.  By the Holy Name Saday, which is great in power, and by these other Names Cados, Cados, Cados, Adonai, Elohi, Zena, Oth, Ochimaneul, the First and the Last, Wisdom, Way, Life, Virtue, Chief, Mouth, Speech, Splendor, Light, Sun, Fountain, Glory, Mountain, Gate, Vine, Stone, Staff, Priest, Immortal Messiah; Sword, do you rule in all my affairs and prevail in those things which oppose me. Amen.

The capital letters are as written in the book.

Yes, that says “Abracadabra” is a name.  It is said to be derived from the Hebrew “ha brachah dabarah” (speak the blessing) and, according to Mr Davidson, means “I bless the dead” and is one of the most ancient words in magic.  It was written on parchment then worn as an amulet or charm to ward off disease.  

I believe that is the end of our language lesson, boys and girls.  For now.  The examples are drawn from both Witch Hitlist and Demon Plague and I am sure that I will be struggling with Latin again since Anna, Liam and Chelle are currently in Hell.  I used Elvish as the language of the Demons in another book but I won’t here.  I’ll use Latin consistently as the language of the Angels and their opposites in Hell.  

Will there be any other languages used?  I don’t know.  I like what I have going on here and it seems to work.  Reliable translators would be helpful, ones that do syntax as well as words.  But I can’t see me adding anything else to this series.  Maybe if a Russian pops on to the scene *laughs*

Have a great day!  (And, by the way, it is now about 1:15 😀 Don’t know if I’m happy to be right or not!)

Review: Bites by Ninfa Hayes

Bites is a short anthology of two stories: Last of the Blood and Demonica.

 

Last of the Blood is narrated by its main character, Damon William Blackwood.  A poor orphan turned elite soldier scout, he is selected by a trio of vampires to be the first in the Covenant they are forming.

 cov·e·nant   [kuhv-uh-nuhnt]

noun

1.  an agreement, usually formal, between two or more persons to do or not do something specified.

2.  Law . an incidental clause in such an agreement.

3.  Ecclesiastical . a solemn agreement between the members of a church to act together in harmony with the precepts of the gospel.

Or, in this case, vampires. 

Gabriel Maygrove, Lady Lavinia Rinaldi(“Italian aristocrat and man eater”) and Gerome Les Saints are the vampires who seek Damon.  He is special and they want him.  He accepts their offer of immortality and they change him.  He gains the power to read the minds of man (and vampire) with the change, as well as the increase in his natural talents.

A life of decadence blood follows, as a small family, forever seeking fulfillment in a celebration (and destruction) of “everything that is mortal.”  Then Gabriel falls in love.  Countess Nataliya Petrova is a power hungry little skank, if you’ll pardon the word.

But Gabriel, struck by her delicate beauty, falls for her and spends a century following her around as she builds a massive army of vampires. 

Her human husband, Count Petrov, is one of the most disgusting characters I’ve ever had the delight to envision.  In my mind he is approaching his sixties, bald with beady eyes, a red nose, a large handlebar mustache and equally large beard, both stained by food and wine.  Perhaps he was handsome in his youth but life and overindulgence have made him awful.

So dangerous is the mind of Nataliya that our hero fears her even before her change.  As Gabriel changes the Countess, Damon leaves the room.  Hunger assails him and he finds a young girl, one he encountered at the party – pretty, tempting, young and soft.  In his hunger he kills her then leaves to wander alone.

A century passes and Damon once again finds his way to his maker.  Nataliya has made the world a horror and her long dead husband, who at first sought the man who took his wife, left a legacy that is now devoted to hunting and killing the vampires she has created.

I love this story.  The ending, which I shall not give away, has a poignancy that touched me. 

 

Demonica  is a fantastic view of the way Light and Dark work, on the creation of man and the battle of Good and Evil.

Irina, the girl with the flaming red hair, pale skin and brilliant green eyes, lives in Eden.  It is the Garden the Gods created when they first created Adam.  It lies in the space between mortal and immortal.  On one side lays the view outside of Irina’s bedroom window: Palazzo Inferno, home of Lylith and her children – Succubi, Incubi, Weres and Vampires. On the other side of the Garden is the home of the Gods and Angels, Isola dell’Angelo. 

Every year the Daemon from Palazzo Inferno and the Angels come to the Garden to choose the best of the teens to join their court.  Most in the Garden aspire to Isola dell’Angelo.  Not our Irina.  She wants to be a part of the Palazzo.  She wants to experience life among the Daemon of Lylith’s court. 

On her 16th birthday she gets her wish. 

It seems that Irina’s arrival was foretold.  She bears the Mark of Lylith on her shoulder and it is she who will bring the weapon from Isola dell’Angelo to aide the Darkness’s side against the Light.

And so she does.  She brings Lucifer and the Fallen Angels.  The Light retreats, hiding within itself, waiting for the final war. 

I love creationist stories, I love it when people take the never ending battle between Good and Evil and make it their own.  Who knows what the truth is?  I don’t, do you?  Perhaps Ninfa is correct, or at least has some things right.  It doesn’t matter, really, but she does make you think. 

 

Ninfa weaves compelling stories (so compelling I finished the book in less than a day).  Her characters are clear, defined and you immediately create an emotional attachment to them.  The plots are divine, unique and the stories follow the plot lines smoothly.

Fanciful, wonderfully dramatic, I would recommend this book to anyone.   And you can find more of Ninfa here.

 And here: 

Facebook @Ninfa Hayes

 

Twitter @Ninfa76

 

“Bites” e-book available now or you can pre-order your paperback copy from:

 

 

 

 

 

Bitten Fruit Books (With  exclusive signed copies!) :www.bittenfruitbooks.com/pre-order-form.html

 

The Erotica

Liam pinched and twisted lightly, pulling up to use the weight of her breasts against her.  He watched as her knees spread and her hands moved back to brace herself, opening up for him. He knew the change in position was automatic and while he cursed the man who hurt her, for this alone he thanked him. 

That’s right, my wonderful readers, today we’re talking about S-E-X.  And I’m listening to fantastic music for it too – the soundtrack for Burlesque.  If you haven’t seen the movie or heard the music you truly should.   

But first… I have hit 12 followers!  Ten blog followers (6 of which are wordpress), 5 email followers and 1 comment follower.  I’m so pleased!  Not bad for just over a week.  When I hit 100 there will be a giveaway I think.  

Now, on to the topic at hand.

As I’ve said before: I write adult fiction.  I write adult scenes.  That means that portions of my books are really quite graphic. And I run the gamut from sweet and romantic to some brutal, cold BDSM.  There are three people in particular I’d like to talk about:  Anna, Liam and Astrid.

Anna

Anna comes to Liam from a M/s relationship.  M/s means Master and slave.  She is a strong, independent woman but that doesn’t take away the need, the desire, the craving to serve.  She wants to give all of herself to Liam but finds herself incapable of it because of the pain her previous Master caused.  The damage he did lasted through a couple of years of the single life while she tried to recover and even now, two years into her relationship with the man she is meant to be with.  The man whose soul is entwined with hers and who loves her with all he is.  

Service to Anna isn’t about sex, although that’s a part of it.  Service is the doing for someone.  It’s looking after them, meeting their needs before they fully realize them.  It’s about pleasing and being pleasing.  Anna’s been craving this, needing this, but she hasn’t been able to move past her baggage.

That aside, Anna is an extremely passionate woman.  She meets Liam stroke for stroke, cums for him over and over.  She is his, his Mate, his pet and his right arm.  She wants to be able to give him all of her heart and soul.  Anything he demands of her, asks of her, she gives… except that.  

Liam looked at Anna, caressing her face with his gaze before he met her eyes.  Everything he felt for her was in his eyes and he was disappointed to see her eyes were guarded.  His arms tightened around her a bit and she settled closer as her eyes drifted to his mouth.  He lifted a hand and stroked stray hairs off her face.  Her hand rose to cover his and she nuzzled his palm.

“You can’t give me all of you, can you?”  Liam’s voice was rough with pain.  Anna shook her head mutely.  Liam captured her eyes again for a moment and then dipped his head.  Just before his mouth captured hers, he whispered, “I’ll take everything you can give me.  Then I’ll make you forget and take the rest. Someday, Anna, there will come day you will be mine in entirety.”

A challenge to be sure.  One Anna rises to.

Anna is a skilled lover.  She, (and Liam) is the reason the scenes between them are erotic.  Every touch, every caress, every thrust of hips… It’s all a dance of love and desire.  They tease as they touch, deny even as they give and take.  Anna’s orgasms are wrung from her with a growl and a scream.  Her unique physiology (as half Vampire and half Wolf) lends her an equally unique …flair.  (Man that took a long time to come up with. It’s not a talent or ability, really, it’s just something that happens.)   When she becomes aroused her skin heats up.  Yes, most of us become warmer when we’re aroused, or excited, or scared.  Anything that gets our heart racing will warm us up some.  But with Anna it’s more.  

Her core temperature sky rockets and her skin begins to glow.  It looks like flames behind vellum.  It flows and slides, slithering and weaving.  It’s sensual and sinuous to look upon.  It’s hot to the touch and if you’re not the reason she’s aroused you will be burned.  Her fire can, and will, spread to the one she’s consorting with (Liam) to protect them and include them.  It makes the whole experience far more intense and far more intimate.  

Liam

Liam is fierce in his passions, devoted in his aim to wring every last orgasm from his lover.  At the same time he wants them to be as intense as possible.  He is also addicted to Anna, to her passion, the sounds of her pleasure, the heat of her, the taste and feel of her.   

Before he met Anna he was not that into BDSM.  He knew bits and pieces, had heard of it but mostly as the stereotypes that are out there.  I’m sure you know some of them:

*It’s all about leather, whips and chains.

*Dominants are cruel and abusive.

*Subs and slaves are doormats with low self esteem.

*All female Dominants are in it for the money and the gifts.

*It’s all about getting your rocks off.

*All subs are masochists.  All Dominants are Sadists.

*BDSM is only for people who like pain.

That is only a selection of them.  As with all stereotypes there is some truth to them.  Some Dominants ARE cruel and abusive.  Some subbie types are doormats.  Of course people like to cum.  And yes, there is leather, there are whips and chains and rope too.  And there are professionals who do it for the money.

But that’s not all it is.  BDSM is as unique to each individual as the individual themselves.  You get what you give.  With BDSM (I think) it’s about learning.  Learning what you do like, what you don’t, what service means, what ownership means, what each of the symbols and toys and… there is so much to learn and Liam set about learning it all when he and Anna talked about her past relationship.  

Together they worked towards him learning how to dominate her.  They were successful in making a beginning and it is something that they are still learning together.  They are still learning how to love one another, what pleases each other.  And it is to Liam’s great joy that she is beginning to leave the baggage behind. 

He is determined to have all of Anna, she is his everything and he wants the same from her.  

That aside, he too is a skilled lover.  The pack is a close knit unit and Liam wasn’t exactly one to sleep alone.  He learned well how to please a woman, how to draw her pleasure from her until she is panting with need and begging for release.  His dominance is natural and now he is using those skills on Anna.

Astrid

Astrid is a secondary character.  She is a Delta.  Fourth in command in the pack but since the Alphas, Beta and Gamma are so strong and so in command it’s a big step down.  But Astrid is also a masochistic submissive.  She serves the pack in her way.  Her position means that she protects, defends and aids.  Her need to serve is almost completely fulfilled by the pack. 

However, none of those below are strong enough, nor are those above her willing, to feed and ease the urges driven by the masochist in her.

A masochist is defined as one who is aroused by pain and/or humiliation.  I’ll take that a step further and say that a masochist is not only aroused by pain but they need it.   They crave it.  They have moments where all they can think of is the pain driven orgasm and the need to be under someone’s paddle (or whatever).  

Unfortunately, this is Astrid’s greatest weakness.  And it is that weakness that I devoted two full chapters to.  It is that weakness that drives the second half of the book.  

The club was in an old Victorian house and the only way in was down a side alley to the back door.  Astrid reached the door in a hurry.  It opened before she could knock on it and a petite girl dressed in little more than three hankies draped over strategic spots opened the door.  “Astrid!”  The girl’s face lit up at the sight of her friend.

Astrid smiled warmly. “Hi Honey, how are you?  What’s traffic like?”

Honey hugged Astrid tightly.  “Oh, girlfriend!  You should see the woman who came in a half an hour ago.  She is smokin’!  And her aura breathes Domme.”

Astrid felt things inside her twist in anticipation.  “What does she look like?  Do you know her name?”

Right there, Astrid is showing her desperation.  It has been too long for the young Wolf, something she shouldn’t have allowed to happen.

Astrid…how do I put this… Astrid is, well, see for yourself: 

Then the toes of supple black leather boots appeared in her line of sight.   Slowly, her eyes traveled up the length of the boots, paused at the knees then slid up the thighs.  She took in the deep red leather skirt then traced the curves of the corset, lingered at the cleavage and moved up onto the mouth.  The lips she was staring at curved into a mocking smile.

“Haven’t you seen a mouth before, girl?”

The sultry voice caressed Astrid’s ear and she shuddered hard, panties dampening.  Astrid lifted her eyes the rest of the way and met the deep, green eyes.  “No Ma’am.”

One slim red brow winged upwards.  “You’ve never seen a mouth before?”

Astrid blinked then blushed.  “Yes Ma’am, I have. It’s just that I’ve never seen one so…” She cut herself off, mortified.

“Speak, girl.”  The command was soft but firm.

Astrid’s gaze dropped to the floor again and she forced the words out through her embarrassment.  “One so perfect.”    Her blush deepened as the object of her lust chuckled.

“You are the one the girl at the door told me about, aren’t you, girl?”

Astrid blinked; she was surprised Honey said anything about her at all.  “Perhaps so Ma’am.  Honey likes to talk as people come in.”

The woman circled Astrid, looking her up and down.  “Well, you look tasty enough to me.  Let’s go have some fun.”  She wrapped her hand around Astrid’s upper arm and pulled her along to one of the private rooms.

Astrid is smitten, yes?

Her celibacy and need, combined with the sexy and dangerous aura of this woman, lead to Astrid’s downfall.  She goes willingly, happily to her doom. 

But the chapters following are graphic depictions of some aspects of BDSM.  There is a great deal of pain inflicted and some humiliation.  It is not for everyone.  I realize that.  However, I do believe that if you choose to pick up my book and read it then you are open minded enough to accept what you’re reading, regardless of your own views on what is sensual, sexual and arousing.  

This blog didn’t go as I had hoped and I pray it makes sense.  I’ve been exhausted and sick the last couple of days (today included).  Yesterday I was barely able to keep my eyes open, much less put together more than three words in a comprehensive way.  I spent the day sleeping and gaming.  

Today I am determined to accomplish two things:  my blog and the first half of the book I am reviewing (there will be a review of the blog up in a couple of days).  Now I’m done the one, I’m going to move to a more comfortable spot, one more conducive to reading than my desk, and work on the other.  

Enjoy your day! 😀

Photos in the Wind

So, as promised but a day late, here are the pictures I took on Friday.   A couple of them are standing shots (meaning we stopped the truck *laughs*) but the rest are taken at around 100-110kph.  My ex-husband has a lead foot. 😀

Oh but first…

O.O  Wow that came out large.  Well, Hi… this is me… I was playing with the settings on the camera and it has a ‘Self-portrait’ setting that allows you to take a picture of yourself while holding the camera.  Came out rather well, even if the look on my face is kinda goofy. 😀

Next more playing with the settings on my camera.  These count as photos in the wind because they were taken in the truck.  First up, my daughter:

(and it’s a really good thing she doesn’t read my blog or she’ll attempt to kill me in my sleep for this)

This is on ‘Magic’ setting number 6 – Punk.  There are 7 settings but I only played with two.  Going to have to try the rest, maybe on the same still life subject.   The next one is Magic setting #4 – Drawing.  And it is my ex-husband.

Pretty cool eh?   I just took pictures of my breakfast (which is pretty colourful) on all the Magic settings.  Some of them are…interesting.  Jam on a rice cake doesn’t translate well to either of the above two settings but the fish eye was great!

Onwards and upwards!

I have this thing for cupolas, turrets and clock towers.   I love them.  They come in some standard shapes sure – square and round mostly – but there are some surprising treatments in some cases.  I have to say, of the this and the next couple of pictures, I had more trouble getting my timing down at 60 than I did at 110.  Go figure.  This clock tower is, I believe, in Botsford.  I liked it for its austerity:  the straight, clean lines, the bland, unsurprising colours and, of course, the Roman numerals.

I love the architecture from the late 19th and the first half of the last century.  They wanted to impress and yet, in small towns, their resources were fairly limited.  It forced them to be creative in constraints.  (Ha!  Coined a new phrase!  Maybe it’ll catch on eh?)  This next building is town hall I think.  And it’s taken through the windshield, you’ll have to pardon the bug guts.  

Again straight, clean lines, the unsurprising colours (maybe this town had a boring streak eh?) , but then there’s the bright white, Greek revival columns and the round cupola on the top.  

My timing was WAY off here *laughs*  This is a Presbyterian church, I believe.  And I loved the top of the entrance, all castle-y.  (pretty sure that’s how they describe it in those architectural magazines and TV shows.  “Why yes, Babs, we do like the castle-y way you capped off your balconies here.”  *giggles*)

Not too many more, just the ones I like the best.  I took 20+ pictures on Friday.

We were heading towards Parks Blueberries and saw this: 

I took this through the driver’s side window, *almost* getting into Dennis’s line of sight.  It’s a slumbering fair!  Well, parts of it anyway.  Looks like a winter pasture for the rides.

Speaking of pastures… (almost)

We were driving past what I think is Sloan’s Nursery & Christmas Trees in Bothwell and I spotted a field of Christmas trees just waiting to grow up so they can be decorated.  There were acres upon acres of trees.

And, inspired partly by Mike again, I had to take this shot when I saw the building:

Shot through the window again, please ignore the bug guts.  At first glance, from this view, it looks like it’s a neglected building, falling apart from disrepair, but as we came up to the front of the building there was a truck and signs that seemed to indicate it’s still in use.  It’s a liquidation center for farm equipment, seeds and livestock.

I wanted to show how far along spring is coming here… and so quickly too… but apparently spring sprung a telephone pole!  I took another pic immediately after but overall, I like this one better.  I like the green of the winter wheat (I think) field and the way some of the trees are getting dressed for summer already while others are still starkly naked.

Two final pictures.  Both pictures we actually stopped for.  The second one my ex-husband turned around and stopped at without me even having to ask.  (I think he was having as much fun with the pictures as I was, though he’ll never admit it)

I’m still not entirely sure why this image appealed to me.  I think it was the juxtaposition of the old, slumbering woods and the gleaming technology behind it.  Maybe it’s the jumbled but crisp  lines of the trees against the sky vs the stark, straight lines of the windmill.  I think the windmills are beautiful in their own way.  They represent the turn around in thinking of the powers that be to create a better, more beautiful world for us and those who come after us.

Finally, the best for last…

I wish we could’ve gotten a better angle, I wish I had been able to get up close and personal with some of it.  But I love this house.  I love the history that whispers along each stone.  I love the sloped roof.  I love the sharp peaks warring with soft curves.  I loved the low stone wall out the back with the arched gate-less gateway that looks like something out of a horror movie graveyard.  The small white door gleaming from the side just calls to you to see what’s on the other side.  You can imagine the smells of baking bread and steaming stew.  *sighs happily*

I may or may not post a book blog today.  It depends on how the weather goes (so far, wet) because I have to start digging up the peonies before they get too big for their britches.

Be good and if you can’t be good, do share the stories!

A Working Saturday… or… Demons in Scotland

It’s pouring rain here so it’s a good day to work inside.  Would rather be doing the gardening we promised the landlord but hey, this works too.  Especially since I missed yesterday.

I find myself compulsively checking my email!  When oh when are they going to answer me!   At least it’s 14 days and not 90 or worse, 6 months.  *shudders*  

I’ve been working in the second HW book, Demon Plague.   Well, reading and tweaking bits here and there.  I’ve been trying to  catch up and remember where I left off before I went back and started re-working HW1.   And all I have to say is wow.  

I have a demon called an “Utukku Limnuti.”  He is an ancient Babylonian demon and exorcised only with the help of the God Pazuzu, a Sumerian deity, god of the winds. I’ve lost all my bookmarks since I did the research for these too so I am hard pressed to explain Utukku.  There are several ways he’s explained – as a God-demon who is both good and bad, as part of an exorcism incantation series, or simply as a series of evil demons.  The demon I chose is called “Ninjutsu.” He is a demon who is supposed to be under the geis of Pazuzu.   Here I chose to interpret him as a single entity with a bad sense of humour and an addiction to movies (kind of like Anna & me):  

Anna blushed and Marcus grinned more broadly.  She had opened her mouth to retort, one hand covering her throat, when a scream ripped through the air.  The three of them whipped around towards the water in time to see a Mu level Wolf named Lily get plucked off the small boulder she’d been standing on.

The girl was lifted into the air by a huge monstrosity.  It was a being made entirely of water in loose humanoid shape.  It reminded Anna of the Golgothan in Dogma and she cursed under her breath.  She took off running towards the screaming girl.  As Anna closed in, shoving her way through the stunned Pack members who stood there, staring as more arms flowed out of the body and grasped the still shrieking girl by each limb and around her neck.

Anna stood on the shore and shouted up at it, “Ninjutsu!  Let the girl go!”

A loud watery laugh answered her.  “Spawn of Cain; do you think you can stop me?  You wish me to let her go?  So be it!”  The demon pulled and the screaming stopped abruptly as the girl’s head popped off and the limbs tore free of the torso with a wet sucking sound.  The demon threw the bits and pieces at the pack, scattering the Wolves.

It laughed again, big belly laughs, as Anna turned to the pack and screamed at them all to get as far away from the water as possible.  “Cain’s pubic louse!  I will leave the rest alone if you will give yourself to me.”

“You lie!  Do you not think, filthy Utukku Limnuti, that I have dealt with Demons long enough to know that they never tell the truth?  There is no mercy in you.”  She planted her feet in the pebbled shore and lifted her hands over her head, palms facing each other.  She began to chant in a long forgotten language as she cast her mind around for the name of the God whose help she needed.  Power formed between her hands, a glowing ball of blue and purple fire.  Finally, the name of the God, a Sumerian, pops into her head.

“Pazuzu!  Please help rid us of this monster!”

The demon flinched at the name but covered it’s fear up by growing bigger.  It roared at Anna and reached for her. 

Anna threw the ball of fire and the demon hissed as a piece of it turned to steam.  She took advantage of the momentary weakness and chanted quickly in Sumerian, the ancient words rolling off her tongue, each one laced with power. She threw another ball of fire at it and called on Pazuzu once more.  “Pazuzu aid your children! Save them from this filth!” A column off fire grew around her, snaking from her to the Utukku Limnuti.

Water shimmered and shook as Anna’s power began to wrap around the demon like chains.  It chortled, amused, and grabbed the chains to pull.  It screamed as the fire superheated its fingers. 

Anna smirked.  “Did you really think I’d make it that easy?”

The Utukku shrank a little as it reformed the vaporized hands.  Uma Thurman’s voice came out of its throat as it said, “You know, for a second there, I really did.”

Yet another death in the pack.  *sighs*  I’m going through Wolves like junk food addicts go through bags of chips.  Anna does indeed rid them of the demon, never fear.  If she hadn’t, the story would be done eh?  And that’s only a few chapters in.

As an aside, can you name that movie?  (Or her character’s first name?  “The Bride” doesn’t count.  hehehe)

As the demon is dragged away by his God:

“You’ll not succeed!  You will die!  My Master will send more after you.”  The disembodied voice floated around Anna before moving off.  “You are dead!  You and your little dog too!”

“Seriously, get some new movies!”  Anna shouted at it.  “And tell your Master I’ll not go down without a fight.  Tell him to face me himself.”

Now, if you can’t name THAT movie, I’m going to have to school you some.

Later on, after the pack has reached their destination on the Isle of Skye and had a wee, pleasant interlude of dinner and information gathering, they go for a walk in Dunvegan’s rather magnificent gardens (and I’m very sure that the pictures on line don’t do it justice, I really do need to go!) and are, of course, attacked again.

Suddenly, the Lycans all stiffened.  A scant moment later, Rafe did too.  They instinctively turned so their backs faced each other and each pair of sharp eyes sought the night for the source of the disturbance.  They all became aware of a heavy breathing that sounded more like a soft mocking laugh.  Glowing yellow eyes came out of the darkness, locked on Anna.

“I see it,” she whispered.

They all turned in her direction.  The yellow eyes grew larger, hovering at Anna’s chest level.  The sound of claws scraping on rock grated on their nerves.  A cloud shifted away from the half full moon and bathed the creature in light.

Oh my gosh!  Creepy.  *shivers*  What is it you ask?

Well, let me tell you…

The thing laughed, showing large sharp teeth.  The shaggy, slick black fur quivered as it shook with its own amusement.  “Yes, let the Seed of Cain go.”  It moved before her on four large paws, pacing back and forth, long slim tail flicking at the ends.  

A demon jaguar!  It belongs to Itzamna, the Mayan Creator God.  Lord of the Sky, of Heaven and Night and Day.  But he’s not the only demon creature in this attack…

She lifted the sword and severed the head as a male creature, dressed as a Mayan king appeared.  He nodded to Anna and she bowed back as he lifted the cat into his arms.  Anna watched, puzzled, as only the spirit was taken, but not the body.  “Itzamna?”

“I take only that which is mine.”  His words rumbled across her skin and he vanished.

Anna stared at the headless beast, stunned as it began to change colour.  The front legs thickened and the black fur bled away as tawny fur rolled in from the top down.  Three heads sprang from its neck as Anna watched.  The shock of seeing lion, goat and dragon heads appear sent her stumbling backwards; she slipped from the rock and disappeared into the ocean.

Guess what it is this time.  

It’s a Chimera.  A creature with a lion’s body, the heads of a lion goat and dragon.  Its tail sometimes has the head of a snake – this one does.  And it has wings.

It’s a vicious, vile creature at the moment.  

Anna reappears and calls upon Zeus, Ares and Artemis to help her defeat the creature and Hades to receive it upon its demise.  

Once they get past that trial and get home, where there is another problem, they end up being visited by the giant Finn McCool.  😀  The giant responsible for the Giant’s Causeway.  He comes to warn them of the impending visit by the Fomorii.  

The Fomorii are ancient misshapen, violent sea gods from Ireland; they were vicious and single-minded in their drive to destroy.  The battle with them is totally cool, if I may say so myself.   But it only comes after Anna calls the pack together and gives them a rousing speech:

“Today we come under attack yet again!  It is my greatest sorrow that you all must suffer because I came to visit.”  She paused as rumblings came from the crowd and her heart warmed as most of the sentiments were more about how it was worth it than about she should have stayed home.  “I must ask you to fight yet again.  But this time we have some mighty help.” 

Anna lifted the Spear over her head, holding it with both hands.  “This is the Spear of Lugh!  It is bloodthirsty and will kill and kill until it is stopped!  It will help us slay the Fomorii.  It will help us win the day!  I ask you, nay I beg you, help me save you all and stop these attacks.  Will you fight with me?”  A long undulating howl rose from her still human throat, both a demand and a plea. The pack joined her in answer.  When the last echo faded Anna looked at them again.

A great roar went up from the Wolves and a large portion immediately started tearing their clothes off to shift.  Anna grinned, her eyes turning black.  “Let no enemy live!  Let no Wolf die! Fight for we shall not die so easily this day!” She lowered her arms and set the base of the spear near her right foot.  She cradled it in her elbow and lifted her hands to the sky.  “Brigit!  We call on you to aid us!  Help us finally find peace, let this day see our last battle.” 

Anna closed her eyes and brought her hands together.  All the Wolves in fur and skin closed their eyes and bowed their heads as she spoke.  “Peace up to Heaven, Heaven down to earth.  The earth under Heaven.   Strength to everyone!”  A loud clap of thunder split the air in two on her last word.

Isn’t she great?   

After the Fomorii they are visited once again by divine intervention, Dagda – king of the Tuatha Dé Danann and ruled over Uisnech and Father God of the Celts – and  Manannan Mac Lir  – Celtic God of the Sea.   Dagda has a giant club, so large that even the giant God is unable to carry it and drags it behind him on wheels.  The club slays enemies and  heals friends.  Manannan is ruler over the prison the Fomorii were trapped in.  Together they save the pack and aid Anna in her darkest moment.

Dagda also tells Anna where all the attacks start and it brings us to our final round of demons – this time mostly Christian.  

On the way to Hell they encounter some interesting creatures.  This is one:

“I am Baraqijal.”  His voice was gravelly and low.  Compelling.  “You must turn around.  Do not attempt to complete this quest or it will be the end of you.”

Anna ignored the thinly veiled threat.  “What choir are you from?  Cherubim?”  She tilted her head.  “No, you have more the look of a Grigori.”  She nodded in satisfaction.  “Despite the soot that mars your features, you are still quite beautiful.”

Baraqijal looked at her, baffled.  “Did you not hear me, Hybrid?”

“Oh aye, I heard you.  I’m ignoring you.”  Anna smiled sweetly at Baraqijal.  “We will continue on our way.  I will find the demon responsible for the deaths of my Wolves.”

Anna, with her usual sass, sashays away and they continue on.  Unfortunately, the Grigori is correct – the journey will be the end of some of her group.  

These are a few of the happenings in the second book.  I’m looking forward to continuing my journey through it.  It’s been very interesting thus far.  

Sadly, there’s a lot less sex in it than in HW1 and I’m not quite sure why.  There is a lot more violence though.

Perhaps there’s a balance after all…  😉