Thursday, August 25, 2016

Love, Liars, and Legends to Die For by Kim Kasch

Please welcome today's guest to The Roses of Prose, Kim Kasch.
You think you know someone then they rip your heart out…

It’s a tale as old as time, a story written through the ages. This is the history of love, liars and legends.

And it doesn’t take a legendary hero to experience love…or liars.

Everyone has experienced a terrible tragedy, been victim to a lie, and perhaps even had their heart broken.

It’s true. Even readers fall victim to a beautifully woven plot, where they get swept off their feet, while they turn the pages. And, a good book shows you just how easy it is to get caught up in a story and be tricked into believing the unbelievable. It’s even easy to become a party to a love affair, often at the hands of a skilled liar.

Throughout the pages of history people have been misguided by others. But deceit is eventually discovered, at least as we turn the pages on carefully crafted plots and search for the nuggets of truth hidden inside the stories.

For example, the most famous of lovers are often known for their trickery and deceptions, such as Cyrano de Bergerac. He romanced the woman he loved, the beautiful Roxane. But in truth he was lying to her all along and misleading her for the handsome but less skilled wordsmith than himself, Christian de Neuvillette. Christian wanted Roxane for a lover but he could not win her over with his own words, so he enlisted his friend Cyrano to win her hand. And Cyrano did as he was requested by deceiving the kind and naïve Roxane through trickery. In the end she was heartbroken when she learned the truth.

And then there is the story of Romeo and Juliet with her deceitful plot to trick everyone by her feigned death. But in the end, that too played out as a tragedy.

"For never was a story of more woe - than this of Juliet and her Romeo."

Legendary lovers might appear to live lives larger than most but they are also emboldened by the storyteller’s prowess with words. Many tales of heroic lovers are nothing more than big fish stories that appear much larger than they ever truly were.

When you spend a little time unlocking the history behind the lore, you might be disappointed, disillusioned and sometimes even disgusted, as you discover the truth. But it’s always worth the journey to find the truth behind the story because while you’re on the path through the pages, you will be sharing the Big Fish story and actually become a part of the tale. . .or maybe that should be “tail”.

Kim Kasch has a legendary love story coming out through Midnight Frost Books, in July. It is a Young Adult Romance based on the Danish legend of Morgaine Le Fey and the Viking.

She currently has a Young Adult Romance out through CleanReads, The Cats of Cullaby Creek.

EXCERPT:
Kelly and Kyle
These two shared some sort of history. And now I was in the middle of their story.
Sparks flew through the air. But, they didn’t seem to notice—or maybe they just didn’t care how uncomfortable they were making the rest of us.
I scanned the room. The terribly odd thing was that while they stood in the center of the cafeteria—arguing—everyone’s eyes were on me.
What is so interesting about me?
After a few seconds, I heard whispered accusations slammed back and forth, like a ping-pong ball. My name, muttered in odd and angry tones. No one seemed to mind staring at me, but only the bravest few were sneaking sideways glances over at Kelly and Kyle, hoping no one noticed.
This wasn’t what I needed on my first day at a new school. I hadn’t come here looking for instant enemies, but I knew I’d accidentally stirred a private pot and things were already starting to boil.
I needed to do something and quick. From the sounds floating around me, if they got into an actual argument, I was going to get the blame.
I spit out the first words I could think to say, “What’s a new kid to do, after school, around here… for fun?”



BLURB:
When Savannah meets Kyle, its love at first sight. And why wouldn't it be? He's perfect, as far as she can tell. But Kyle appears whenever things go wrong. Maybe he isn't everything she thought he was. It's a complete mystery until she discovers the water in Cullaby Creek is being bottled and sold as vitamin “infused” water. Mistic Water promises the impossible. And then, like a magical elixir, it delivers. People who drink it feel younger, smarter, faster...healthier. But it doesn’t take long before side effects hit. Literally. The secret has to be in the water…or is it something more?


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

IDEA TO PAGE OR ANOTHER AUTHOR PROCESS by Brenda Whiteside


This month, we Roses have been cluing you in on summer vacations, various home projects, and how they get story idea from head to page, among other topics. Since I am in the throes of beginning The Deep Well of Love and Murder, fifth in the series, process is a good subject for me. 

My first book contract came in 2009. Book five of the series is my eleventh such contract. Where the idea for a book comes from varies. I’ve gotten inspired by a family member’s general experience and once by a night spent in a cheap motel. Ideas have jumped from the page of a wedding announcement and a brainstorming session with my husband. 

When an idea comes, and if the idea is one I’ll run with, characters almost instantly materialize. It’s practically instantaneous. In fact, a character in the leading roll, often is the idea that sets off the storyline. 

And, so, the first thing I do, even before research, is construct my Character Sketch file. Here is what that looks like. This is the working file for the heroine in The Deep Well of Love and Murder. You can see it’s not complete. When complete, not all of it will make it into the book:

CHARACTER SKETCH

TITLE: Heroine

Character Name:  Laura Jane (Burns) Katz                              Nickname:

Birth Date and Place:  Long Beach, CA  1992

Character Role: ex-wife of Clark Katz and heroine, protagonist

Physical Descriptions:

                Age: 26

                Race: Caucasian

                Eye Color: deep green, wide-set

                Hair Color and Style: long, blonde

                Height/Weight/Build: smallish 5’4”

                Skin Tone: fair

Style of Dress: It’s spring so she wears sleeveless tight Tee shirts or t-strap tops and tailored shorts. No jewelry. She will wear cotton skirts if the event requires.

Distinguishing physical traits or mannerisms:

Personality Traits: Very outgoing and independent

Background: Comes from a dysfunctional family of an alcoholic mother and abusive stepfather. She left home at seventeen (the day after graduating) and moved to Flagstaff. Dropped out of college when she became pregnant and married Clark Katz. Had a miscarriage, but hung in there working two jobs while he loafed. In book one, he was involved with the theft of Lacy’s mother’s artwork and consequently arrested. She divorced him. When he got out of prison, he stalked her and went on to more serious crimes. Again arrested so when he got out again, she left for Chino Valley.

GOAL:

MOTIVATION:

Internal Conflicts:

External Conflicts:

Occupation/Education: waitress and nanny

Miscellaneous Notes: 

Every character in the book will have a file like this one. Only the major characters (heroine, hero, villains or perceived villains) will have a complete work up. It’s very likely not all of the information will make it into the book. 

If a book is part of a series like The Deep Well of Love and Murder, the events will be added to my Series Timeline. Every birth, death, marriage, and major event will be entered. 

The research begins. When I start creating the character files, the story is percolating which sparks questions, and it’s time to get educated. I can’t write a character whose great grandfather was a Brazilian Gaucho without knowing what a Gaucho was and where and how they lived. If my character had an alcoholic mother, I might need some knowledge on how it could affect her. 

At some point, there’s no sure fire recipe, I write the opening paragraph and synopsis. Character information will continue to come in…the people in the book will open up more and more to me as the story progresses. That in turn will necessitate more research. And the synopsis will expand, get hacked, ebb and flow. 

It isn’t a straight line from idea to final product. This is the process that works for me.
For more information about me and my books visit:
https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B003V15WF8

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Ready Or Not; Here It Comes by Margo Hoornstra

Mid-Michigan, my local Romance Writers of America chapter, had a first three pages critique opportunity at its meeting this past Saturday. Along with fifteen others, I submitted the beginning of my latest WIP, Deceived by Trust, to be read and reviewed by the group.

Chapter One

“Police! Stop right there! Put your hands where we can see them!”

Two steps into the storage locker, Jenny Reynolds froze. A white light flashed in her eyes. Nearly blinded, she blinked in the glare. Her purse hit the ground with a thud.

Fingers splayed opened, she raised her hands. “What’s going on?” Heart thundering, breaths shallow, her body snapped into survival mode. “What do you want?”

“We’ll ask the questions. Is this your storage locker?”

“Yes.” Mouth dry, she struggled to grasp what was happening as a knot lodged in her stomach. “This is the one I rented yesterday.”

She squinted into the brilliance but could see nothing beyond bright white.
What if they aren’t police?

A Detroit native for most of her life, she was well aware crime could happen anywhere. Even so close to her own backyard of Mayfield, one of its more upscale suburbs. Not only that—the knot tightened—these units were advertised as specially insulated. Were they sound proof too? Would anyone hear her scream?

If this was a robbery, they could take whatever she had and leave her alone. “There’s nothing stored in here yet, but I have some money in my purse.” Right leg extended, she started to toe the bag over to whoever held the freaking bright light on her.

“Don’t move!”

“Okay.” Her right arm dipped slightly to regain her balance. She retracted her leg. “Doing my best to not move here.”

“Are you Jenny Reynolds?” Her purse was snatched away.

She was about to ask if she could lower her hands, then decided against it. “Yes.”

“And this is the storage locker you rented?”

“I already told you that. I also told you there’s nothing stored in here yet.”
“Really?”

“I have a few household items out in the truck. Friends are helping me cart over some larger furniture tomorrow.” She was talking way too much. Nerves always made her do that. “Please, what is this about?”

As if they’d finally taken pity, the glare scorching her eyes was blessedly dimmed. The door on the ten foot by twelve foot cubicle creaked as it was trundled shut behind her. She spun around as the latch mechanism clunked into place.

“Stay where you are.”

Without a second thought, she did as she was told. After a soft click, track lighting in the ceiling came on. She blinked to clear her watery vision. Two uniformed police officers stood on either side of the now secured door.

A man in a dark suit with a badge hung outside the breast pocket stepped toward her, his expression grim. “Do you have ID?”

She accepted the purse he handed back. “What’s going on?”

“Did you sign the contract to rent this storage locker?”

Fishing out her wallet, she produced her driver’s license. “Yes. I told you I rented it.”

He took the license along with her purse and wallet, passing it all to one of the officers. “Did you sign the contract and intend this space to be used to store selected items of yours?”

“Yes. As I said, I’m bringing some bigger things over tomorrow.”

“Where do you plan to put them?”

“What?”

“You heard me.”

One hand put a light grip on her arm. The other closed over her shoulder as he rotated her toward the interior. Huge shelving she’d never seen before lined the back wall. Various metal parts and gadgets she didn’t recognize, some tagged with cardboard labels, were neatly arranged on the evenly spaced surfaces.
“I don’t know what all of that is.” She let out a shaky breath. “Or how it got in here.”

“That’s what they all say.” The sarcasm lacing his tone as much as told her further denial would be futile.

“It’s the truth.”

“Can’t wait to hear what you have to say about the truck you arrived in.”

Nodding to one of the uniformed officers to raise the door, his hold on her didn’t let up one whit as he marched her into the rapidly cooling air of an early spring evening. A police car was parked beside the loaner truck she’d arrived in. Spinning red, white and blue lights jumped and pulsed on the building walls.

“I don’t suppose you have the registration and proof of insurance for this vehicle?”

She shook her head. “It belongs to a friend of my ex-boyfriend.”

“Funny. This truck was reported stolen last night.”

“But, I have the keys to it.” Eyes wide in disbelief, she glanced around. “If you’ll hand me my purse again, I’ll show you.”

“A spare set which the owner, stupidly I’d say, left in the glove box.”

“I’m telling you this truck belongs to the friend of my ex-boyfriend, Rod Do—”

“Donahue.” The plain clothesed cop smiled. “You just answered my next question.”

“I what?” Both hands were drawn together behind her back. Cold metal cinched her wrists.

“Jenny Reynolds you are under arrest for possession of stolen property…”

“What?” Her breath caught, and time stopped. “No!”

“You have the right to remain silent…”

He continued to talk in words that made no sense to her fogged brain as he led her toward the squad car. The flashing lights pulsed in jack-hammer time with her heart. A hand held onto the top of her head as she was ushered inside the back seat.

Sheer panic threatened to close her throat. She stuck her head through the still opened door. “There’s been a mistake.”

“There’ve been a lot of mistakes.” He peered in at her. “And you made them.”

Comments I received went something like this: ‘Wow!’ ‘That really drew me into the story.’ ‘We have a good feel for the conflict this heroine will have to deal with.’ ‘That opening makes me want to read what comes next.’

Though I was pleased by the positive feedback, call me crazy, part of me wanted a little more. Surely there’s something here that needs to be improved upon.

Or maybe, just maybe, I’ve done all I can (with help from CP Jannine, of course, who is no doubt as we speak, rolling her eyes) and it’s simply time to send this one out into the world.

Deceived by Trust is the first in my four part series Brothers in Blue. So, tell me. What do you think? Ready? Or not?

My days to blog here are the 11th and 23rd. For more about me and my stories, please visit my WEBSITE 

Monday, August 22, 2016

The system IS rigged!- by Leah St. James

We've all puzzled over computer glitches, but some days I wonder if computers truly are taking over the world.

It all started when Son No. 2 (in birth order only), who lives about 90 miles away, mailed my husband a card for Father’s Day. About a week after the day passed without delivery, he called with the following message, “Hey, I got Dad’s card returned. It says, “Moved—No Forwarding Address.’”

Since we’ve lived in this house since 2009, and believe me, hubby still lives here, it was perplexing. We theorized it was a glitch in “the system” since our son had moved out about six months earlier; maybe “the system” got their names mixed up. (Yeah, we didn’t believe it either, but we like to give the benefit of the doubt.)

So our son mailed it again, only this time he used his fiancee’s name, which has no similarity to ours. About ten days passed, still no card in the mail, when our son texted that the card had been returned again, marked “Moved—No Forwarding Address.”

The next day at work, when I had about five minutes of breathing room, I called USPS customer service. I was met with the opening spiel of a pre-recorded message—press 1 for this, 2 for that, and so on. 

Unfortunately, none of the numerous presets addressed the problem of: “You’re returning my husband’s mail to sender and telling everyone he’s moved with no forwarding address!!!” So I tried, “Operator.”   

The line went dead. 

I called back, waited for the script to end and tried, “Agent.”

Response from the robo-system:  “You want to speak with an agent, is that correct?”

Me:  “Yes.” (Or maybe, “Yes, you moronic....”)

The response was that it would be a “21- to 31-minute wait.” I could hang on, or I could leave my number and wait for a call back. I would not lose my place in line. 

Not very trusting of “the system” at this point, I decided to wait it out, but after about 15 minutes on hold, I had to take an incoming call and hung up.

About an hour later, I had another window of opportunity and called back, worked my way through the phone maze and got the exact same response. This time I left my number, rushed to the ladies’ room and ran a few other office errands to make sure I’d be free in “21 to 31” minutes.

I got back to my desk with a few minutes to spare, but it wasn’t for another 20 minutes that my phone rang. I picked up.

Me:  “Hello?

Robo-Voice:  “This is the callback that was requested. When ‘Leah’ is on the line, press 1.”

Grumbling, I pressed “1” and was placed on hold for another minute before a real, live person came on the line. 

Filled with relief, I spilled my guts to the agent. She took notes, gave me a reference number and told me it would be up to 48 hours for a response. I tamped down my impatience; at least we were making progress.

The next day, I was running around at work, came back to my desk, and there was a message on my cell. You guessed it, I had missed the return call from USPS. Thankfully the caller had left a direct number for the local supervisor. I was to call to get it straightened out.

With fingers and toes crossed, I pressed the numbers into my cell. My call was answered by yet another robo-voice: 

“You have been forwarded to a voicemail system; however, the person at this number does not subscribe to this service. A valid attendance member (number?) has not been specified. Your session cannot be continued at this time. Please try again later. Goodbye.” CLICK.

And we wonder why our government is so messed up? Even its voicemail system can’t speak English. The bureaucrats probably don’t have a clue what the others are saying! (Yes, I know USPS isn’t exactly “the government,” but it’s close enough.)


A couple days went by during which I was too frustrated to take up the fight. Then hubby got a call from his dentist’s office that a statement had been returned marked “Moved—No Forwarding Address.” 

Obviously the problem wasn’t going to fix itself. I returned to battle.

Eventually I got the correct number to the local office and spoke to a supervisor who promised to delete the forwarding order from “the system.” When I reiterated that we hadn't submitted any forwarding order for my husband, he said, 

“It doesn’t matter that you didn’t do it, it’s there, 
and the system will pull your husband’s mail
before it even gets to our facility.”  

That was five days ago, and so far so good. He's actually received mail! I just know if I have to do business with “the system” again, I might go postal. 

(Next month:  Everything you didn’t want to know about tracking a delivery from the FedEx Home Delivery service.)
______________
Leah writes stories of mystery and romance, good and evil and the power of love. Please visit her on her Facebook page where she’s been known to post goofy photos of Hercules the Kitten.


Sunday, August 21, 2016

Visiting 50 states by Barbara Edwards- One place

Bryce Canyon
We finally reached out goal. My husband and I have visited all 50 states. To celebrate I started combing through the thousands of photos I took. Oh my. So many beautiful views. How do I pick some to share.
I decided on some snaps from Bryce Canyon, near Yellowstone.
Barbara Edwards at Bryce Canyon



I made the horrible mistake of not labeling each photo as I took them, but I did take photos of many signsso I do know at least where we were.
I want to go back. I didn't see enough. I recommend planning lot of time when you go.
A hoodoo




 This is cs called a hood doo formed by the wind and weather. So many they are like an enormous forest.
I admit every place gives me ideas for another story. I really wanted to climb down into the canyon and wonder amid the broken rocks and plant-life. 

there are hiking trails everywhere. With warnings to carry enough water.



When we left this section of the canyon a forest fire was burning alongside the road.
Scary stuff.

I hope you enjoy my photos.















Bryce Caanyon
Entry to Bryce Canyon.































Bryce Cnyon.



















Saturday, August 20, 2016

Do I even have a writing process?????

THE WRITING PROCESS OF R.E. MULLINS


When asked, I quickly jumped at the chance to take part in a blog series involving an author’s writing process. I was pleased to be included. It wasn’t until later I found myself asking. Do I even have a writing process?

What have I done and what am I working on? 
Well, I’ve published three books and I’m working on the fourth. Surely, there is something I can contribute…

How does my work differ from others in its genre?

Right now, I’m finishing a series of vampire/romances. The Blautsaugers (old Bavarian word for bloodsucker) live in Amber Heights, Missouri along the Amber River. They belong to the strongly regulated Nosferatu sect of vampires.

My vampires are essentially humans with an extra chromosome or two. These additional links on their DNA chain gives them some added umpf. They, of course, possess the vamp characteristics of blood diet, longer life, ability to mesmerize humans, extra strength, speed, and healing capabilities. Due to their extended life span, however, they mature very slowly emotionally. The vampire’s tween years start in their forties and last until they reach their majority at one hundred years of age. 

Humans have the ability to stay up all night by devising ways to function in the dark. This was accomplished with the inventions like electricity, lightbulbs, and coffee. My vampires are the same. They have the capacity to work during the day and go out into sunlight. Of course proper precautions are necessary. (Didn’t you know sunscreen and sunglasses were originally invented by vampires?)

Family dynamics and affairs of the heart remain the same whether human or vampire. And, as with all emotional beings, things are never easy. All hearts have a mind of their own.

So why do I write what I do?

I’ve always been an avid reader. While working in a medical laboratory a storyline presented itself. What would happen if a phlebotomist were turned into a vampire? She could use the lab as a means for getting blood…I sat down and began writing. A wonderful co-worker read these piecemeal chapters and constantly encouraged me to continue. However, I couldn't have stopped if I wanted to. Writing quickly became an obsession. 

By the time I stopped, I’d written a 93,000-word document. I gave several more friends thick notebooks filled with the copied pages, got their feedback, made changes...and then it all stalled. I didn’t know what to do next.

I searched out the local chapter of Romance writers in my city and attended a meeting. I planned to ask that very question: What is the next step after typing 'the end'? 

Entering the library's backroom, I found half a dozen people sitting around a circular table. Honest to goodness, they were all so pale they practically glowed in the dim light. I couldn't help but wonder if the only time they ventured outside was to attend these meetings. Or, perhaps, I'd stumbled into a coven meeting by mistake? Or were they the very vampires I'd been writing about?

Since the meeting had already started, I quietly took a seat where the head witch...er, I mean leader indicated with a friendly wave of her hand. The lone man was already in the process of handing out copies of the first chapter of his new WIP. He seemed quite excited about his new storyline. The pages, however, were received with enough indulgent comments that it became clear to me this was standard procedure. Evidently, each month the group read, critiqued, and actually edited the latest of his first chapters. From things they said, I gathered that by the time the next meeting rolled around he would have abandoned this beginning for something new.

I also learned he'd never finished anything beyond the initial chapter. Since then, I must admit, I've spent more time than probably necessary feeling bad for him, and wondering why he could never make it over the hump to complete a second chapter.

Throughout the meeting they spoke of publication as if it were the Holy Grail. Every so often I caught one of their gazes and knew I was covertly being scruitinzed. This didn't bother me as I was doing the same. Yet I couldn't imagine what they must be making of my tanned skin and the sun freckles I've accumulated, despite liberal doses of sunscreen, through hours and hours spent outdoors.  

When it was my turn, I told them about my finished novel only to be met with frank disbelief. Almost censure? "What did I mean?" One demanded with a touch of amusement. Was I actually claiming to have written an entire novel of over 90,000 words without prior experience? No short stories, poetry, magazine articles, or writing contests? 

Evidently, long ago school assignments didn't qualify.

I accepted their attitude that I hadn’t paid my dues and therefore it was quite doubtful I could get published. Thoroughly demoralized, I left feeling stupid, and as if I’d behaved presumptuously. I never went back to another meeting.

At home, the manuscript was shoved into a cardboard box where it gathered some dust as I accumulated rejections from agents and puglishers. Then I discovered the Wild Rose Press. Hesitantly, I followed their submission guidelines. To my shock, I got a call from one of their editors, and, eventually, the book was published. 

I’m leaving out the laborious tale of the lengthy time it took me to rewrite the manuscript - twice - during an extremely heavy editing process. But that’s the story of how my first novel, IT’S A WONDERFUL UNDEAD LIFE, was written and published. 

I'd like to stress the moral to this publishing quest. Have a little faith in yourself, and don't let naysayers discourage you from reaching your goals. Because I lacked self-confidence I allowed an insulary group to convince me that a book they hadn't even read wasn't worthy of publication.

There is nothing wrong with creating for your own pleasure. You don't have to be published to feel the pride of writing a book. That, in and of itself, is a major accomplishment. 

Yet, in hindsight, I believe those six, pasty-white people had forgotten this. They spoke longingly of being published but they'd become so afraid of  criticism and failure that they'd stopped trying. To them, it had become easier to never look beyond that first chapter. Why? With an unfinished work they were never faced with the hard decision of serving it up for possible rejection. 

Yet it is through constructive criticism that our writing improves. Editors and publishers aren't attacking you personally when they reject your book or ask for a rewrite. They are versed in current marketing trends and reader preferences. Use their critiques and suggestions to learn and grow your writing skills.

So how does my writing process work? I admit it's pretty haphazard. When the words are flowing, I can sit at the computer all day long. When the words stop, I go for a walk, garden, or hop on the riding mower. I've the most groomed lawn in the four-state area. Or I might flop onto the couch and stare into space, whine to anyone who will listen, and live in my head until the voices come back. 

I’ve tried outlines, timelines, and other techniques but sometimes my characters refuse to bend to my will. They are certainly a headstrong bunch. For example, I’d no idea a demon was going to pop up in my second book: VAMPIRE IN THE SCRYING GLASS 





BLURB
It's been a rough couple of years for Cailey Kantor. Facing her first Christmas alone and bad financial news, she prays for an angel to fix her problems. Instead, a sadistic, sociopathic vampire, with the goal of starting a vampire war, attacks her and forces her to drink blood stolen from the Nosferatu Gabriel Blautsauger.

Gabe must complete Cailey's turning or she will die. In doing so he risks losing his yet unfound soulmate. But something about the lovely mortal speaks to his heart. Once her transformation is complete, he and Cailey find themselves embroiled in a battle that could cost them all they hold dear.

Faced with lies, abduction, and betrayal Cailey wonders if the vampire she is falling fangs over heart for is in it for love or if she's just a means to stop a war.






Blurb:  From the first moment he laid eyes on her, Rafe Blautsauger loved Morgan Maguire. Yet the lovely mortal must never know as love between human and vampire is strictly forbidden by the Nosferatu council. Unable to stop, he keeps to the shadows while protectively watching over her. Soon he begins to suspect she has secrets of her own. Hailing from a long line of witches, Morgan turned from her magic when, as a child, her first casting went horribly awry.
 Now a sequence of events set in place before her birth sends her scrambling to regain her power. Vampires and a set of malevolently glowing red eyes hunt her. 




Blurb:  Vampire Metta Blautsauger is known as the family airhead and she works hard to keep up the façade. It’s the perfect cover as she goes from dispensing her own brand of justice as a vigilante to an agent for Orcus, the Nosferatu shadow agency.
Captured, tortured, and left for dead, she is forced to leave both the agency and Lucas O’Cuinn, the mentor she’s grown to love.
For the last century she’s struggled with regret and boredom. Then her life is given new meaning when four mortal ministers ask her help in stopping a human trafficking ring. If Orcus discovers her unsanctioned involvement, they will brand her as a rogue. The penalty is death. It’s only a matter of time before Lucas arrives—stake in hand.
Lucas O’Cuinn has waited ninety-eight years for Metta’s return and he’s run out of patience. It’s time she remembers she belongs to him.



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