A Spider, an Event and a Freebie

Good morning!

On Saturday, I did two things and I’ll talk about about the second one first because it’s really cool and really creepy.  

Talk?  Nah… I’ll show!

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Isn’t he wonderful?

He’s creepy, yet fascinating.  

Okay, mega-creepy.  I do not like spiders anywhere near me, which totally does not explain why I got so close to that one.  Zoom is a wonderful feature for a camera too. *laughs*   The lighting and his position were just perfect and I needed it.

Just like I needed this one:

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Beautiful, busy bee.

It amazed me that I managed to catch him, he was, well, busy.  I love the detail in these two pictures.  A friend of mine suggested that I enter two photo contests.  One is the Lambton County guidebook cover contest and the other is a macro contest for National Geography, I think.  I might use one of these two for that NatGeo contest and this one for the Lambton County contest.

The other thing I did was attend an author signing called Ignite Your Soul Author Event 2016.  It’s the third year they’ve been in London (mine, not England’s) but the first time I’d heard about it.  And the only reason I heard about it is because my friend Sue – a bestie from high school – told me she was attending.  We hadn’t laid eyes on each other in 21 years so what was I to do?  

I spent three hours getting toxed stupid, laughing my ass off and meeting some wonderful people.  I have several new books to read, a lead on a couple of publishers and a call to submission that could prove incredibly lucrative if I’m accepted.

I’m not going to talk about that last one though.  It’s my secret until I actually make that submission. 

What else have I done recently?  Why, I started school on the sixth.  I started out with a full load because I’m home and I’m smart, right?  

Pfft.  Thanks to Fibro and MCS I no longer learn like I used to.  I don’t learn as easily and I don’t learn the same way.  I take copious notes to prove to myself that I get it and because it’s easier to remember if I read it and write it.  So it’s taking me 2 or 3 times as long to get through everything.  I’m down to 3 courses per term now and it’s better.  I’m enjoying what I’m doing better.  And I’m not missing anything anymore. 

I’d rather succeed more slowly than not at all.  My business idea has huge market potential and I want to do it and do it well.

What’s your dream?  What are you doing to make it a reality?

I gotta hit the accounting book again.

Oh, wait!  I almost forgot!

Because I’m so damn happy with Saturday’s event, even though I was there as a consumer, not a creator, I decided to put Witch Hitlist up for free again!  If you didn’t manage to grab it last time, now’s your chance!

GET IT HERE!

Enjoy your day, folks!

Muah!

 

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Demon Plague is LIVE!

Good morning, folks!

I am pleased to bring you the second book in my Highland Wolves series:

Demon Plague

Just look at the cover!

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I know the back is a tad difficult to read but it is readable.

Isn’t it gorgeous?  I love having vibrant, compelling covers.

I say that with zero modesty and a whack of pride.  I spent hours on it a few days ago.   Cried over it even.  

I have to tell you, even though I publish through Amazon/Kindle it is so exciting to see my books available for public consumption!

It’s a lot of hard work to get them there.  The research, planning, character development, writing, editing, editing, editing, editingformatting, cover planning and development.  I could hire someone to do the cover, I suppose, but I like seeing it come together.  

Just in the writing, it’s a huge relief to write THE END at the end of the document.  It’s a milestone but now, to see it for sale (and soon to see it in print), it’s breathtaking.  

Sure, a traditional publisher picking up my books would be wonderful, (or heartstopping) but for now, I will continue to do it this way.

You can see HW2 in print here and on Kindle here.

I hope you enjoy them!  If you missed the 5 day promotion in which HW1 and Lizendale were free on Kindle I’m so sorry but you’ll have to purchase them now.  😉   Both books are also in print, of course, (Highland Wolves 1 can be found in print by clicking on “See all formats” or by clicking here).

You can look at all my books on my Amazon Author page.  

What’s next?

Next, I will be diving into the research for HW4 and I will be editing A Year in the Life of S. Claus.  I am seriously considering submitting it for publishing at Sterling and Stone because of a little book I read put out by them called SANTA: EXPOSED by Guy incognito.  There was a line in the book saying “what if Santa has deals with all the toy companies al over the world?” and it made me want to give them Ari.  First though, it needs at least one run through.

I will begin plotting for NaNo too, I think.  Or at least, I’ll start looking for ideas.   The YA tiger shifter is too short to do it as November’s NaNo, unless I make it a series of 2 or 3 shorts.   Something to consider.

Plus!  I have a college application in for Fanshawe’s online Business Program.   Busy busy, just the way I prefer it.  

I am out of here!  Have housework to do and some rest (it’s been a busy, toxic last week and I’m exhausted) while I plot out what’s going on over the next few months.  

Have a wonderful day!  

Muah!

 

Everyone Loves Free Books!

Good evening!

Since I will be publishing Demon Plague: The second Highland Wolves Book on August the first, I have decided to put the ebooks Witch Hitlist, the first of the series, and Lizendale, a stand alone, very dark paranormal drama up for free!

Phew, that was a long winded sentence.  Sorry about that but you get the point.

FREE BOOKS! 

Which is a good thing, right?

That, dear readers, is my gift to you.  They are for free, across Amazon/Kindle in Canada, the US and the UK.

I do want you to love the first book so that you’ll want to read the second.  And I want you to love my writing so you’ll want to read any book I write.  

I am a writer, after all.  😉

I do hope you enjoy them because the simple fact is that I write to evoke emotions and paint pictures in my readers’ minds.  Not to make a pretty penny, that’d just be a major bonus.  

The links below are the Canadian ones.

Witch Hitlist

Lizendale

Have a wonderful night!

A Swan Song

Good evening!

I just had to share some of my favourite pictures with you.  I know that it’s been a while so I will catch you up but first, these completely and totally awesome photos.  

Last weekend, when I was in Grand Bend, I turned from the BBQ and what did I see?  

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Swans and their cygnets!

They wandered into the backyard to pick at the weeds and grass, not entirely sure why they went for a walk, they have a pond about two blocks away.  We were quite delighted to see them for the cygnets were adorable in their ugliness and the parents fierce in their protectiveness, though they were quite relaxed here.  They stayed about ten minutes before wandering off across the street.  

This summer, my daughter decided that her dog needed to live with us full time, rather than her dad, so she could train her and try and get some of her worse behaviours under control.  It’s fallen to me to walk the dog first thing in the morning, invariably just as the sun is coming up.  

So I’ve been appreciating the walks.  I get to see things that a lot of people don’t that early in the day.  We go to the same spot, because it’s easier on me to take her out on the long leash and mostly stand there (sometimes we walk, but it’s before breakfast and before my pills).  I was watching the progress of a large thistle bloom until the municipality mowed everything down on the hillside, I listen to the birds waking up and take time to look for the little things.  Which led to two of three of my most favourite pictures ever.  

 

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This snail resting on the slab of sliced off tree.

Which the dog decided to explore…

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And, thankfully, decided wasn’t food.

My third favourite picture is one I took just this evening after we dropped Girlkid off at work.  We went to the beach to take a gander at the water.  I love the beach when it’s windy and on the edge of being stormy (and when it is stormy).  The colours and movement of the water are amazing.  

The Boyfriend sat down to enjoy the view while I wandered down to the water’s edge then up the pier and around to the boardwalk.  Came up from behind him and saw a picture that had to be taken.

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It was a peaceful moment.

So, those are my favourite moments from the last little while.  

And now, time to catch up!

I decided not to write July Camp, for reasons that are my own, and chose instead to edit HW2.   I’m 43 pages from the end!  That means that it will be published, barring any unforeseen circumstances, on August 1st.  

And THAT means free books! The HW1 ebook will be made available for free for three days (maybe more, depends on mood and options *laughs*).  I will probably make Lizendale for free too.  And then I will begin the research for HW4 and the slow, painful process of editing both HW3 and A Year in the life of S. Claus.  

I don’t have the plot set for HW4 and I am hoping that the research will give me some inspiration for the rest of it.  

AND I have decided to go back to school.  Hopefully, I’ll be starting in September.  I plan on being a busy girl.  The government finally acknowledged that I AM disabled (we knew that, eh?) and that relieved so much pressure in my head, released a huge cloud of depression and anger that was hanging over me that I wasn’t even wholly aware of.  

Happy days!

Time for me to go to bed.  Have a grand night and a great weekend!

Muah!

 

Camp Day 13

Good afternoon!  

This month is very difficult for writing for me but I’m a little bit ahead of schedule.  The stats on campnanowrimo.org say I have to write 1458 words a day to hit 50k on the 30th.  

Technically, that’s ahead (it takes 1667 from day 1 to day 30) but to me it’s behind.  I like 2k a day so I should be at 26k, not at almost 24.  

Oh well.  I have to work with the way I feel.  

I am trying to push through though because of the project I am working on.  In order to complete the weekly pieces on schedule, I will have to work regardless of how I feel quite often.  

James is 2480 words so I will get to letting you read.  I am going to scrub off the heebie jeebies. 

Enjoy!  

Muah!

Japanese Game of Justice

The sign almost said JAMES JOSEPHSON.  It said JAMS JOSFSON and the Japanese man holding it was smiling large and nodding hopefully at every well-built male he saw.

James, the guy in question, ambled through the arrival gate and started looking for his ride.  He found the sign and approached the driver.  “Konichiwa!” James said cheerfully.  He was quite happy to be a contestant on this game show that Japan was for.  The prize was ¥500 million, which was about $4.3 million US dollars, and it was totally tax free.

The man with the sign looked James up and down and stifled a sigh.  This man was not what he expected, but then, he had not been told what to expect, just that he was to pick up a contestant for the show.  He had done this before and the contestants had always looked like athletes.  This one looked like he ate too many American cheeseburgers and sat around on his ass. “This way,” he said in heavily accented English and a barely there bow.  He left James to bring his own bag.

Adjusting his grip a little bit with a barely muffled derogatory comment on the service, James followed the man out to the parking lot. He hoped there was a limo to take him to the studio.  The car was tiny, a boxy little Japanese wagon, and James barely managed to squeeze his 6’2” self into the back seat.  He finds a tray with a selection of bottled drinks and packaged snacks on the seat next to his.

“Eat, eat!” His driver says.

James woke up some time later, naked and shivering, and crammed into a cage.  All around him were other cages, all containing other people, equally naked, cold and pissed off.  Each cage was about twenty inches square, they were bolted to the floor, and there was no space between them.  There were rows and rows of cages.  He estimated that there were ten cages in his row and ten rows in the …cave? “What…what are we doing here?”  James spoke through chattering teeth.  “I thought…”

“Yeah, we all thought.” A man closest to him on the left sneered at him.  “What did you do to earn this?”

“What do you mean?” James asked with confusion.

“I mean that all of us are crooks, cons and, like in her case,” he pointed, “killers.  What is your dark, dirty secret?”

James shrank back against the bars of his cage.  “I…I… I don’t know what you mean.  I play contests, that’s all.  I win a lot but I’ve never hurt anyone.”

“I play contests, that’s all,” someone else mocked.

“Bullshit. You’ve done something.”  The woman to his right came close and pressed her face between the bars.  It mangled her features and she glared at him with her eyes bugging out and her mouth stretched over her teeth.  “I know a killer when I see one, asshole, and you are a killer.”

“I am not!” He nicknamed her Jane, because he was lacking in imagination.

She reached across the space between them and jabbed him with her finger.  “You are!  I can see it in you.  What a clever little psychopath you are.  Hiding, hiding behind your games, cheating whenever you can.  Lying little asshole.”

“You don’t know anything about me!” he cried.

The first speaker stabbed him in the back with his finger.  “Lying bastard! You wouldn’t be here if you hadn’t hurt someone somewhere.”

“Ouch!” James jumped away.  He decided to call that guy Stabby Joe.  “How do you know that?  What do you know?”

“There’s a Jap over there that speaks English.  He heard them talking.  We are the scum of the earth, our captors think, and they were hired to punish each of us.  If we make it to the end, we earn our freedom.”

James’s eyes hardened and he snarled.  “Then I guess I’ll have to kill you all, just like that little half Jap bitch Tahlia in high school.”

Jane crowed gleefully.  “Oh-ho!  I knew it!  I knew you were a killer!”  Freezing water suddenly pelted them from sprinklers above them and they all screamed in shock.  She turned her face up to it and closed her eyes.  “Drink, asshole.  It’s the only water you’ll get today.”

James reluctantly did as she told him to and tipped his head back.  The water wet his dry throat and he gulped it down. The water shut off before his thirst was slaked.  He smacked his lips then noticed his mouth was a little slimy and there was an acrid taste left behind.  “What the hell?”

“Oh, just wait, newbie.  It gets better.”  Someone shouted.

A few minutes later, his gut cramped.  Hard.  He doubled over, as best he could in his small box, and wrapped his arms around his middle. He swore loudly as the cramping turned into convulsions in the lower intestines.  “No, no, no” he moaned.

His neighbours laughed between their own convulsions.  It wasn’t their first time and wouldn’t be as intense as what James is about to go through.  He cursed them as he tried not to shit himself.  The convulsions worsened and he squatted.

The moans and groans of pain echoed in the room, warring with the drips landing in the puddles.  James tried and tried but he couldn’t help it and his bowels evacuated themselves brutally, in a messy, chunky stream of liquid.

“Ha, ha!” crowed Stabby Joe gleefully, even as his own bowels let go.  “Serves you right.”

Suddenly the lights went out and came back on.  A hush settled over the prisoners.

“What’s going on?” James whispered.

“Shut up!” Jane hissed.

Someone screamed at them in Japanese and the few people who understood it stuck their arms between the bars, cramming them both through the same space.  Others followed suit and two men pushed a trolley between the rows.  The trolley held a large pile of steel manacles.  He cuffed each prisoner.

James struggled and the man grabbed his thumb.  He bent the thumb back toward James’s elbow and James screamed as he was driven to his knees.  The manacles were snapped around his wrist.  The next three people to James’s left were given the same treatment.  Every time someone fought the restraints the following three people were hurt as well.

When the man was done, several others lined up at both ends of each row of cages.  Each person was sexless and faceless behind heavily padded black leather jackets and pants, leather gloves and black motorcycle helmets with deeply tinted face masks.   They carried cattle prods.  James shuddered as he stared at them.  One turned to face him and the dim overhead lights reflected in their face mask, giving the impression of eyes.

There was more screaming of incomprehensible words and a loud buzzing echoed through the cave.  The doors of the cages swung open and the prisoners surged forward.  Most of them took a second to stretch, revelling the small freedom.  They were yelled at again and the doors began to sing closed.  Everyone moved out of the way then, once the doors were closed, they were prodded out one end of the row, one row at a time.  They were led and followed by the faceless people.  There were others watching over the groups and they made their role clear as the group emerged into the bright, blinding light of day.

As sunlight pierced James’s pupils someone made a run for it.  There was the sound of a shotgun being racked and then the boom of the firing.  A thud of the body landing on the ground was followed by silence.  James decided to let these events play out.

They were herded to a field, guided by a few zaps of the cattle prods and then several prisoners were shoved to their knees on the damp ground until the others got the hint and knelt on their own.  Tents lined one side of the field and a large wall of fabric stretched across the end the prisoners faced. Solid, wood, scaffold-like towers stood at each corner with armed gunmen standing in each.  Bleachers lined the side opposite the tents and the final edge of the field held

Several small, very old women scrambled among the prisoners, shoving small wooden bowls of soupy rice at each person.  James stared at the contents of his bowl, trying to figure out the contents.  Chunks of white, fibrous vegetable and a brown stringy meat.  “I’m not eating this,” he said, setting his bowl on the ground.

“Suit yourself,” Jane said as she reached for the bowl.  Stabby Joe beat her to it and she screamed wordlessly at him and launched herself at him.  Gunshots boomed again and those with cattle prods rushed in.  Jane subsided, returning to her own seat with her hands over her head and her eyes lowered to the ground.  “Okay.  Okay.  I’m sorry.  I’m good.”

They halted, the cattle prods less than an inch from her skin for a long moment then pulled back and marched out of the crowd.  Jane sagged with relief then glared at Stabby Joe.  “I will get you.”

“Not if I get you first, skank.  And when I do, I’ll make sure your last act in this world is to get choked out while I fuck you.”  He grabbed his genitals and shook them in her direction with an over-the-top moan of pleasure.

She flipped him the bird while James looked at her appraisingly.  Yeah.  He could do that.

A moment later, two men got up on one of the towers by the long stretch of fabric.  They both had megaphones.  One spoke in Japanese and the other followed in English.  “You have ten tasks to complete to get to the castle.  If you survive the castle, you will earn your freedom!”

More Japanese then more English.  “This is a fight to the death!  You are all criminals.  All have one goal: survival with a clean slate.   If you win, you can go anywhere in the world and begin a new life.”

“What about the money?” James wondered aloud.

“Money?” Stabby Joe laughed.  “You thought that was real?”

James was crushed.

“On your feet!” the English speaker screamed at them.

The prisoners surged to their feet and pressed forward.  As they were jostled and crowded, Stabby Joe spoke hurriedly to James and Jane.  “If we work together, we can get to the castle.  From there, it’ll be each to his own.  Deal?”

“Deal!” James and Jane said together seconds before a horn sounded.  The four rows in front of them started running while the five behind them forced them forward.

James ran for it, swearing because his hands were still manacled together.  The three of them ran, stumbled, slipped through the mud.  There were already dead and dying bodies littering the ground.

They fought their way through the ten challenges, killing more than two dozen people between them.  Injured, they finally stood in the castle courtyard.  James had a broken rib that shifted every time he took a deep breath.  One wrist was sprained, two fingers were broken and he had several deep bruises forming, including the one that covered half his face and forced his eye half shut.  He thought he probably had a crack in his cheekbone.

Jane grinned savagely at him.  “We did it!”

“Yes, we did.”  James grinned back.

“And now, you’re on your own.  And your ass is mine, slut.”  Stabby Joe leered at Jane.

“I’ll rip your dick off with my cunt,” Jane snarled at him.

Guards with semi-automatic rifles stood in a circle around them to protect the medics who went through patching them up, though only just enough to stabilize broken fingers and stop the bleeding one all three of them.  They were given water and food.  And through this, all around them, people cheered and shouted at them.  TV cameras caught every expression and high powered microphones heard every word.  Viewers present and around the world placed bets on the winner.

“There are three more tasks inside the castle!” The words came over the loudspeaker.  “Only one can survive!”  The audience screamed in delight and encouragement.

James thought castle was too grand a word for the big boxy building.  It was two storeys, stacked like a cake that had one layer smaller than the other.  There were barred windows cut into the cement block walls and no other doors.  More guards paced the walkway on top of the first storey.  Three jumbo screens on the top of the building showed their faces to the people in the stands.

James, Jane and Stabby Joe were dragged forward and positioned in front of the three entrances at the base of the castle.  The voice over the loudspeaker counted down from ten with the help of the screaming crowd and the three contestants were shoved into the rooms.  The doors dropped down behind them with a bang.

James immediately turned around and felt all over the door, looking for a way to open it.  There was nothing. He couldn’t hear the outside anymore either; he couldn’t hear anything at all.

With sliding steps and his hands straight out in front of his face, he started forward.  Three steps in something skittered over his foot.  James shuddered and stifled a scream.  “A bug,” he muttered.  “That’s all.  It can’t hurt me.”  He repeated the mantra, willing himself to not panic.  He took two more steps and heard a whisper of sound.  It sounded like a screen being pulled to one side.  James strained to hear anything, anything at all.

A moment later, he heard it.

In the dead silence of the room, it sounded like whispers or silk sliding on silk.  For a moment he entertained romantic notions of a sexy, scantily clad woman, waiting to touch him.  Then reality hit him.

Or, rather, bit him.

Something sharp stabbed him on the top of the foot.  It felt like a bee sting.

And again on his ankle.

James felt tiny feet clinging to the hairs on his legs, crawling up his body.  A wave of multi-legged creatures swarmed over him.  He tried swiping them off and they clung to his hands.  He felt tiny strands of silk sticking to his fingers and screamed.

The sound seemed to embolden the spiders more and hundreds of them rose up his body in a tidal wave of legs and bites.

He screamed again and they climbed in his open mouth.  They bit him everywhere they touched him.   The pain and venom from the sheer number of bites drove him to his knees and eventually to all fours before he was finally laying on the floor.  The spiders continued to bite without mercy as the audience outside screamed their delight at his death.

Camp Day 11

Good evening!

I know it’s been a couple days since I posted last.  It’s taken me far too long to write Ida.  The foggy, heavy head is a bitch.

Ida is erotic horror, which means that if you are under the age of majority in your place of residence you need to sit this one out.

This is going to be  short.  It’s dinner time here and I’m really quite tired.  I hope you like the story.  It didn’t turn out like I expected but hey, it’s done and editing fixes everything. 😉

Have a good night! 

Muah!

 

Intense Dreams

Ida Iliescu moaned as her hips thrust upward.  Her sheets tangled around her legs as she thrashed and twisted.  A tanned hand with perfectly manicured fingernails sild between her thighs and rubbed over her clit causing her entire body to clench up. Her breath froze.  He gave her a little pinch.  She screamed as she gushed all over her bed.

The scream woke her.

Ida pounded the sheets and growled in frustration.  “Holy fuck!  Why? WHY do I keep having these dreams?”  She rolled out of bed and padded across the room to the bathroom, her feet making a soft slap on the oak floor.  Taking a wash cloth, she soaked it under the tap, so focused on her frustrations that she didn’t pay any attention to the temperature.

When she touched it to her folds, she screamed again, this time in shock.  “Holy mother of hockey players!  What the hell are you trying to do to yourself?”  She warmed it up and cleaned herself from knees to belly button.  “Damn these dreams,” she muttered.  “Ruining me for anyone else.”

She laid down on the other side of her queen size bed, rolled onto her side and bunched her pillows under her head and between her thighs. “Goddammit I hope there isn’t another dream tonight.”

Eighteen hours later, Ida finally closed her shop.  She leaned her head on the front door as she turned the bolt and sighed.

“You should go home, you look exhausted.  I can do the final books.”

The soft voice behind her made her jump out of her skin.   “Jody!  I almost forgot you were here.”  Ida was startled and whipped around with her hand on her chest, back against the door.  Part of her was dismayed that the carefully applied makeup didn’t hide the dark circles and sunken look to her eyes.

Jody laughed.  “I was in back working on the arrangements for the Murdock wedding.  I can’t believe she has sixteen bridesmaids!”

Ida groaned.  “I know!  But it’s a fantastic commission for us.”  She rubbed her face and pushed off the door.  “Go home to Frank.  You’ve been working late for the last three weeks.   I’m sure he must miss you.”

“Oh yeah, he misses the cooking.  But he’s not missing out on anything else.”  She made a lewd gesture that had them both laughing.

“God.  Speaking of sex, it’s the dreams.  They’re keeping me up.”  Ida followed Jody into the back room of the flower shop.

“Oh yeah?  Still the super hot guy?”  Jody looked interested as she grabbed her coat and purse.

“Yeah.”  The golden god had been invading her dreams on and off for weeks now, though it had been every night for the last week solid.

“Still no actual intercourse?”  Jody was sympathetic.

Ida slapped her hand down on the table.  “No, dammit!  It’s frustrating as hell.  The orgasms are fantastic and I swear he’s done everything but stick that wonderful cock in any hole I’ve got!” she said angrily.  “Seriously, if you’re going to screw with my sleep with these intense dreams at least fuck me.”

“I totally agree,” said Jody, nodding.  “I’m beginning to think he’s ruining you for all real men though.” She studied her boss.  At 5’6”, Ida was as tall or slightly taller than half of the men in the neighbourhood they lived and worked in.  Between their job, which included slinging around fifty pound boxes of flowers, and Ida’s daily running regime, she was toned, delicious looking.  “You should wear your hair down more,” she added.

Ida pulled the long braid over her shoulder and toyed with the end of it.  “Our customers would find these black threads in all their arrangements if I did that.”  Both women laughed.   Ida picked up Jody’s coat and purse and put them in the other woman’s arms.  “Go home.  I’ll finish these three you have going and clean up.  Go see Jay.” She grinned. “Finish what the golden god has started.”

Jody’s eyes twinkled as she headed for the back door and the alley.  “Oh, I’m sure he’ll be quite happy to oblige. See you tomorrow.”

The door slid shut on its track as Jody pushed it from the outside and the automatic lock clicked.  The smile slipped from Ida’s face as she rubbed her eyes.  She was more tired than she had ever been.  Every muscle, hell, every bone ached with fatigue.  She just didn’t have the energy she needed to finish the arrangements but she had to do it.  She dragged a stool over, knowing it would take her three times as long as necessary.

A few hours later, Ida shut the last cooler and leaned against it, yawning heavily.  She laid her head against the cooler door and indulged in a ten second nap.  Any longer than that, she’d found, and her dream lover found her and began his seduction.  She cleaned the work table, washed her hands, briefly lamenting the seemingly permanent green stain on her finger tips.

Finally, she stood in the alley, pulling the door closed.  A small, satisfied smile curved her lips as she punched in the security code that blanketed the store in protection.  She had taken a slightly more than modest inheritance from her maternal grandmother and built this shop from the ground up.  She’d chosen to work as a florist because of the years of her childhood that were spent in the gardens with that grandmother.

She was also an amateur botanist, creating new breeds of her favourite plants through cross pollination and splicing.  And she loved every minute of her life.

Except the damn dreams.

Footsteps echoing off the damp brick walls around her made Ida put her hand in her pocket and thread her fingers through the set of brass knuckles she kept there.  You didn’t live in the middle of downtown, even if it was being rebranded as an upscale place to live, without some sort of protection.  She reached into her other pocket and thumbed the cap off her tiny can of spray Mace.

Whispers started.  The hushed voices bounced all around her.

What a tasty package.

Wonder if she smells like flowers.

Look at that mouth, I’d like to –

Ida stopped listening and lengthened her strides, trying not to look like they were getting to her. She stared at the mouth of the alley.  Her shop was at the bottom of a long tall building, her back door opened at the side, about one third of the way up the alley from the main street.  Her car was parked in the lot at the other end.   She risked a glance behind her to find three men blocking the way to the busy street.

At her look, the three grinned and picked up their pace.

Ida moved faster but then her boot came down on someone’s discarded banana peel and she slid, crashing into the wall.  She caught her fall on a garbage can and straightened quickly.  But they’d gained some distance on her.  She sprinted forward.

The footsteps behind her got louder, faster.  The garbage cans when flying as they shoved them out of the way.

“Get her, Joe!” a rough voice shouted.

She looked behind her and gave a startled scream to find one of them, presumably Joe, was almost close enough to grab her.  Ida adjusted her purse so there was no strap to grab and put in more effort to running.

Something heavy hit her from behind and she flew through the air briefly before landing on the wet, dirty ground, weighed down.  The breath was knocked out of her and she couldn’t catch her breath. She wheezed trying to inhale.

“Get off her, Joe!  We want some fun and we can’t do that if she can’t breathe.”

The weight lifted off her and she was lifted to her feet.  Strong fingers gripped her biceps as a wide flat hand slapped her between the shoulder blades.  “Come on, pretty thing, breathe!”

Ida coughed, gasped and drew in a long breath.  Immediately, she struggled against the hands holding her.  She wrenched one hand free and sprayed Mace into the face of the one in front of her.

Unfortunately, he saw her coming and smacked her hand to the side.  The Mace missed his eyes and sprayed his cheek instead.  His face transformed from concerned to furious and she shrank back.  He reached out and backhanded her before he ripped the Mace from her fingers and threw it down the alley.

Tears formed in Ida’s eyes as a bruise formed on her cheek but she lifted her chin and spit at him.  “You can’t hurt me,” she said.

“Oh honey, we plan on it.”  He smiled cruelly as he motioned to the two others.  They tore her purse off her then cut her coat off with a few practiced moves with the knives they carried.  Then her arms were pulled behind her and pinned there.

The leader stepped close again and reached out to stroke her unblemished cheek.  His hand slid down her throat, over her collar bone and stopped on her breast.  He squeezed hard enough to leave fingerprints and she gasped.  He grinned as he put both hands on the buttons on her blouse and tore it open.

“Oh la la,” Thug Number Two said.  “The uptight florist likes to wear pretty things.”

Thug One took out his own knife and slid the blade very lightly over her chest.  He popped open her bra by slicing through the small scrap of fabric holding the cups together.  Her breasts popped free.  “Look at how beautiful all this pale flesh is, boys.”

The other two agreed and just as Thug One reached out to touch her there was a shout from the end of the alley.  Footsteps rang out again and Joe changed his grip on Ida as Thug One and Two turned to face the newcomer.  “This bird is ours,” growled Thug One.

Ida bristled.  “Bird?  What, you watch too many old mob movies?  Piss off, you bastard.”  She stomped on Joe’s foot and when his grip loosened and he leaned forward with the pain, she slammed the back of her head into his nose.  Turning, she kneed him in the balls and then took off running, holding her shirt together.

The sounds of a fight started behind her and she slowed.  Near the end of the alley she turned to see who her rescuer was.  She got a glimpse of golden hair, a strong jaw and broad shoulders and slid to a halt, her jaw hanging open.

It was the golden god of her dreams.  He was magnificent as he seemed to effortlessly flow through the fight until all three were on the ground.  Only when they were all groaning did he come to a halt and pulled out a cell phone. “Yes.  I am calling because I have here three men who assaulted a woman in an ally beside the Have a Heart florist shop on Sweet Street.”  He listened for a moment.  “They may need ambulances, yes.  We will wait, of course.”  He shut down the phone and looked up.  “Miss?  Or Ma’am… I need you to stay here.  The police will be along momentarily.”

He removed his coat and spread it over a few boxes that were piled up nearby after testing to make sure they would hold her.  “Please, sit down.  You must be exhausted and frightened.”

Ida came closer, she couldn’t help it.  His voice was seductive.  It reminded her of his whispers in her dreams.  Her knees were suddenly shaking and she started to sink to the ground.  He was there in a flash to pick her up.  He sat on the boxes and cradled her in his lap.  “Shh,” he whispered. “It’s okay, you’re safe now.”

Tears suddenly filled her eyes as she gathered her blouse over her chest.  Revolving red and blue lights filled the alley from both ends and the rest became a blur.  She found herself in her own home, sitting at her dining room table by candlelight as he set a bowl of a light soup in front of her.

Ida blinked up at him, fear warring with comfort.  “Who are you?”

He sat down in a chair beside her and rested a hand over hers.  “Oh, my dear, I thought you were in shock.  I helped you in the alley, remember?”  His thumb stroked the back of her hand in mesmerizing circles.  “My name is Xander Aarle.  After you gave your statement, I brought you home.  You asked me to stay for a little while and I offered to make dinner while you took a shower.”

She looked down at herself and discovered she was wearing a silk robe, a pair of slippers and little else.  “I don’t remember.”

Xander smiled as he stroked her hand and looked into her eyes.  “That’s okay.  It’s shock.  You’re alright.”

Ida yawned.  She blushed as she covered it with her hand.  “I’m sorry.”

“It’s fine.  You’re tired.”  He smiled at her and she blinked.

When she opened her eyes he was above her, his mouth on her nipple and she was arching her back in pleasure, her hands fisted in his hair.   She shoved against him.  “What?  How!?  Get off me.”  She pushed against his shoulders.

Xander stroked her nipple with his tongue.  “It’s okay,” he said softly. “You asked for this.”  He shifted back to rest on his kneels and heels.  His shaft rose high in an impressive display of his arousal.  “You wanted it in all you dreams.  You begged me to fuck you.”  He grabbed her legs and pushed her knees back to her chest as her jaw went slack.

“You…you were in my dreams?” she asked as he moved her hands to hold her legs in place.

“Spread those beautiful thighs for me, my little tasty treat.”  Xander shifted again, lying on the bed with his face near her core.  He blew gently on her and she gasped.

Helplessly, she spread her thighs.  “I don’t…Oh!” she panted as he swiped the flat of his tongue up her lower lips. An electric tingle shot through her that made her feel good and yet left her feeling tired.  He brought her to a screaming orgasm that way then pushed himself to his knees.

Xander crowded her, laying on top of her.  He peppered her face with kisses.  “Such a lovely snack you are. Let me in, Ida, let me in.”

Ida whimpered and rocked her pelvis just a little, causing his cock to slip through her slick folds.  “Please, please! Fuck me.”

“That, my dear, is exactly what I needed.”

She screamed as he thrust into her all the way to the hilt, forcing all her muscles to adapt at once.  Ida opened her eyes and screamed again; this time in fear and loathing.

Xander had transformed.  His face was terrifying.  He had a short snout and wicked fangs.  Black eyes with fire in the pupils stared at her.  Cheekbones jutted out and rose up at the temples to meet multiple ridges from his forehead.  Red skin covered him from head to foot and great big wings rose up from his back.

Ida wriggled backwards, fighting to get away. “Let me go!” she shrieked.

“No, your life is mine now.  I won you!” He growled.  His head darted forward and he sunk his teeth into her shoulder to pin her down.  His tongue lapped at the blood but that’s not what he was really after.

She pounded on him and kicked, struggling as hard as she could.  A sharp, burning pain suddenly exploded in her womb as barbs from his penis stabbed into her.  Ida’s struggles got weaker and weaker as he drank in her life force.

Finally, all that was left of her was a husk and two blood stains on the bed.

April Camp Day 8

Welcome to Hector’s little hell hole, people!

It took me two days two write this and, frankly, The Boyfriend is a little surprised that I managed to write at all today.

I have had a fair number of public appearances in the last couple of days – shopping, therapy, my daughter’s dance competition – and my head is basically full of acid coated cotton batting. I have a major migraine and my thinking is not where it should be.  You don’t want to know how much backspacing and cussing this is taking.  *chuckles ruefully*

Thank you, MCS.  

Speaking of my daughter’s dance competition:  I am so proud of GirlKid!  She won first overall in her age group and category for her solo!  She did amazingly well for her dances. Tomorrow morning is the third and final for the weekend.

MCS is not easily defined but here goes:  Chronic multi-system disorder, usually involved the nervous system and at least one other system.  Persons with MCS “react adversely” to chemicals and whatnot in the environment.   Adversely.  That means we lose our ability to think, to communicate, we get violently ill, we get extremely tired.  It’s crap.

Nevertheless, I managed to finish Hector, largely thanks to a conversation with The Boyfriend and Girlkid.  Sometimes talking it out helps the process.  Hector’s eye – her idea.  Actually, I have to give her credit for that whole last bit (which needs written better, perhaps I’ll attempt that tomorrow).  For now, I’m going to be a vegetable.

Enjoy!

Muah!  PS Count to date?  

History Hath More Fury

 

Hector Heirro studied the email and sighed sadly, expressing his opinion of the sender’s intelligence, and replied with exaggerated care.

Mr. Singh,

As I have told you before, I have a Masters in History and Classical Studies.  I also teach.  The 80 Years War was the subject of my thesis and I developed a theory that I would like to prove.

The thought that he could possibly disprove it never crossed his mind.

I wish to study Her Majesty Elizabeth the First’s jewels as I believe one of them holds the key.  I am well aware that the ones in the museum dedicated to her are paste and I have asked for permission to access the actual jewels. 

You have already implied the permission is granted.  My flight will land at Heathrow tomorrow morning at 9:38 am Greenwich Mean Time and I will arrive at your museum precisely two hours later, allowing for the customs process and traffic.  I have enclosed a picture in a previous email so that you may be sure of my identity but I will be carrying further identification with me. 

I require unlimited and unrestricted access to these jewels.  I assure you, I know how to handle them carefully.  I am paying a great deal of money for this privilege and I expect it to be fulfilled to the letter.

In truth, he was only interested in a single piece.  It is a brooch given to Elizabeth I by the King of Spain, Phillip II.  Rumours have told him that the piece opens like a locket.  She denied accepting it many times and sent it back to him each time.  Each time, he would send it back.  Hector believed that they were exchanging messages.

Elizabeth I was purported to be supported the Spanish Dutch rebels against King Phillip II and yet she was in league with the king.  It would change the world view of history if he could just prove it was true.  It had taken exhaustive research and he hundreds of thousands of his family’s fortune but he didn’t care.  He’d been all over the world, especially Spain and the Netherlands and gathered all kinds of information, suspicions, rumours and secrets.  The one that had kept cropping up is the brooch as a locket.  He pursued it ruthlessly.

Hector walked from through the penthouse apartment and out to the pool enclosure for his last swim for the next few days.  The pool itself is only ten feet long but has a motor that produces a current of varying speeds that allows him to swim in place.    He was fanatical about his health, ate well and swam for about forty-five minutes every day he was at home.  He was rather vainly pleased with his body.  It was, he thought, too bad there was no woman to admire it.

Twenty-four hours later Hector was in a vault deep in the Tower of London, staring at Elizabeth I’s personal collection of jewels.  The real ones.  He almost rubbed his hands together in glee.  Instead, he turned to his companion.  “Thank you, Mr. Singh.  I appreciate all your time.”  His tone was clearly dismissive.

Mr. Singh, who runs the biggest bank in England and carries the responsibility of protecting the royal jewels, was not used to being dismissed like the family butler.  He opened his mouth, closed it then opened it again.  He turned away from the young man and headed out.  At the door, he paused and gave Hector a single finger salute then walked back into the main bank, whistling happily.

Hector waited until he heard the door lock then indulged himself with a gleeful hand rubbing.  “Okay, Hec, let’s get to work.”  There was no real description of the brooch-locket so he began at one end of the table and started picking them up.  He logged each with a description.

“That’s weird.”  He examined the small brooch in his hand.  It was vibrating a little.  The longer he held onto it, the longer he focused in on it.  The world spun around him and he was suddenly standing in the Queen’s Privy Chamber with half dressed women screaming in fear and outrage all around him.

Hector dropped the brooch and he was suddenly standing back in the vault. He stumbled back against the table and rubbed his eyes.  “What the hell was that?”  He looked all around the floor for the brooch but couldn’t find it.  He gave up after a long, fruitless search.  There was absolutely nowhere for it to hide so he got up and resolved to get back to work.

There, in its original spot on the table, was the brooch.  “What the hell?”  Hector snatched it up to examine it.  Immediately, it started vibrating again and he quickly dropped it on the table.  He rubbed his hand on his thigh and stared at it once again.

“You know, Hec, I don’t think that’s the brooch after all.  Time to move on.” He made a couple of notes, (like don’t ever touch that again!), and moved on to the next in the line.

It was too small, he thought, but he looked anyway.  It had gems in varying shades of red all over it and a small silver axe.  He couldn’t figure out what it was for.  Hector closed his fingers around it and paced as he tried to figure it out.  The brooch vibrated and he found himself facing Elizabeth I and her favourite torturer.  The former looked at him with surprise while the latter dropped the small hammer he had been using to pulverize the small hand bones in the person they were questioning.  The woman in the chair screamed in fear as soon as Hector appeared.  Hector embarrassed himself by screaming in response.

The queen gave a command Hector dropped the brooch and the world spun crazily around him.  He found himself on his hands and knees staring at the vault floor, the brooch nowhere in sight.  He pushed himself to his feet and looked at the table.  There it was, gleaming dully in the vault’s soft lighting, back in its spot.

Hector pushed shaking hands through his hair.  “What is going on? Where am I going?”  He was part frightened, part intrigued.  “This could be a great way to study history!  But what if I get stuck?  Or injured?”  He shuddered.  He was suddenly more afraid than intrigued and involuntarily took a step back.  Then another.  He was almost at the door when he caught himself.

“No!  I’ve worked too hard to find this proof to give up now.”  He marched back to the table and looked over the brooches before selecting one at random.

It was pretty, almost the size of his palm and, to him, looked like it could open.  It had an angel on the front that was set upon a shield with crossed swords.  Perhaps it was given to her as a symbol of God’s protection, he mused.  He was so intent in trying to find a miniscule hinge that he never noticed the vibration begin.

It wasn’t until he smelled the sweat of hot, overdressed horses and the acrid scent of gunpowder smoke that he even thought to look up, so involved was he.  He slowly moved his eyes from the brooch to the muddy ground.  His eyes traveled slowly to the left until they came to the silver and gold plated armour on a horse’s leg.  Up, up, up he looked.

Straight into the face of Queen Elizabeth I.

“You!” she cried.  Her horse danced in place with her agitation.  “Bring him to me!” she said imperiously.

Hector stumbled back, his hand reflexively tightening around the brooch.  Arms grabbed him from behind and dragged him forward.  “No!”  He struggled.

She pulled her sword and pointed it at him, resting the tip under his chin and raised his face to hers.  “Who are you?”  He shook his head, scraping the underside of his chin against the back of the blade.  She pushed his head back further.  “Who.  Are. You?” she asked again.

When he still refused to answer, his eyes wide with fear, she moved the blade to his shoulder and pushed it into him.  Slowly.  He screamed in pain, until a stinky, gloved hand covered the lower half of his face.  Elizabeth stopped pushing the blade in and asked again.  “What is your name?”

He had tears flowing down his cheeks and he was slowly being smothered by the leather glove but still he shook his head.  She twisted the blade and he remembered to let go of the brooch.  Instantly, he was back in the vault.  He stumbled back and hit the table.  It tipped over as he fell, raining the bits of metal and precious stones on him.

Instantly, each brooch began to vibrate.  Pieces of him were transported away to another time.  A hand went there, a piece of torso here.  A large, fancy brooch landed on his face, right over his eye.  His eye went to Elizabeth I’s court, in the middle of a party.  The last thing he saw was a man’s leather pump lowering down on top of him.

Mr. Singh found him some time later, the body mangled, the table upright with the brooches in place, gleaming smartly.