Friday, December 25, 2015

#Christmas Scene #4 - Protector excerpt

Christmas Scene #4

This scene takes place on the day after Christmas.

Was she trying to kill me? First the black bikini, then the top with a sheer back and no bra. The way she danced…I could fantasize for a century with that woman’s moves.

And that was as far as it should ever go. Every woman he’d fancied had tried to kill him. Sometimes more than once. Anything more than sex was a bad idea with his luck.

He flipped channels in what was now his usual chair, Shadow on his lap again. Didn’t know why he let the little buggers near him except for enjoying the warmth. Maybe because they liked him.

“That explains why I didn’t see him upstairs,” Carys said.

“You girls have a nice chat?”

“What did you hear?”

“Their arrival.”

“Yeah. Hope might have a potential boyfriend at school. He’s been too shy to talk to her, so we told her to introduce herself.”

“She’s too young.”

“You sound like her father.”

“Pffft. She’s a child, though.”

“She’s smart. She’ll be fine. I think any boy will have a hard time measuring up.”

Annabelle hated it when William screened her boyfriends. Used to scare them off. Then ran background checks in modern years. She was too trusting. And too willing to give away his money.

“Ready to share your story?” he asked.

Carys sighed and sat down. “On top of what you know, I also have a strong sense of smell and all my previous ailments are gone.

Back in June, I went down to a remote village in a South American jungle to record their music. An old professor invited me to come along on his research expedition. Long story short, they did a ritual the last night without telling us what it was really for and infused me with the essence of their goddess. The panther is the symbol for their god of protection, and every one-hundred years they choose a Protector to guard their people. This time, it was me.

I’m supposed to be able to shape-shift at night, too, though I haven’t tried it since I don’t know what I’ll turn in to. I’ve been learning what I can do ever since, and practicing for the time they summon me for help. I got this bracelet, and the carved claw I sometimes wear, as gifts before I came back home. Like I said last night, I feel they will need me soon. You can bring on the cat jokes any time.”

“Is that why you didn’t tell me? ‘Cause you thought I would make fun of you? Okay, I might say one or two things in jest, but I know this hasn’t been a joke for you. I saw you take on that vamp behind the bar when you first came to town. You didn’t freak out. You took care of that girl and got her home safe. You’ve handled everything thrown at you in style. Don’t ever be ashamed of what you are, love. You’re a powerful woman.”

“Wystan is looking into the history of Protectors. These people only choose a new guardian every hundred years, so either the danger only comes along once, you have old people still trying to fight, or maybe they grew old at a slower rate. I have no idea how long I’m going to be expected to carry this role, or if I go back to normal after the job’s done. I’m going to have to test shape-shifting, too, one of these days, and I’m not taking the risk of harming innocent people.”

“I’ll help if you want me to.”

“Thanks. How long did it take you to tune out noises and scents when you were turned? I had to wear earplugs for over a week.”

“Can’t remember now, it’s been so long. I don’t think about it anymore.”

She brushed her hair back and leaned into the chair.

“You’re wearing the earrings.”

“Yes. They’re beautiful. I love black pearls.”

“I remembered the pendant you wore on Thanksgiving. The black suits you better than white. Exotic. That was the part of your scent I couldn’t figure out when I saw you at the bar. Now I know it’s jungle cat.”

“Thanks. I think. That night was overwhelming. It was the first time I’d been in a crowd of people so close together with these new senses. Doesn’t the loud music give you a headache? I have to take pain pills every time I’m in there.”

“Sometimes. I guess I got used to it.”

“Huh. Well, there’s hope, then.” She smiled at him.

“So what’s the story with your friend at the restaurant?”

“Hunter. He’s an old friend from high school. We were in choir together. I might set him up with Sarah.”

“Did you ever hook up?”

“No. Only friends. He briefly dated my best friend. I didn’t date in high school.”

“Why the bloody hell not?” She was gorgeous.

“When you wear glasses and sing in the choir, you don’t get asked out. I had lots of guy friends, but I didn’t date until college.” She shrugged. “I didn’t mind much. High school boys were so immature. They’re not real ‘cause they’re still figuring out who they want to be. It was all about status and popularity. I hung out with the honor students and discussed science and history.”

“Daniel your only ex?”

“No. There’s Victor. Ex fiancĂ©. We were too young. Dan was kind of a rebound from that, and we split last May. Victor is married with kids now.”

“Was he your first date?”

“Not really. I went out once with a friend, and kinda dated a different guy shortly before meeting Victor. We kissed a few times, then he went back to his old girlfriend. That’s it, unless you want to count the boy when I was four.”

“You had a little preschool boyfriend?”

“Don’t mock, mister! Best boyfriend I ever had. It was pure, innocent affection with no head trips. We moved away from each other when I was seven. He took care of me even though I was the older one.”

“Cradle robber, eh?”

“By five months. Daniel is two and a half years younger than me.”

“So you like younger boys.”

“No, it just worked out that way. My mother was older than my father, and my grandmother was older than my grandfather. My grandparents were the only ones to stay together, so—”

“Not a proven method.”

“No. They were just as much in love when my grandfather died as when they got married, if not more so. The pool cue on the wall, that’s been shortened? That was Grandpa’s. He kept food in their mouths during the Depression with that. He was one of those guys who does the math for the whole table at one shot and runs it out. He could do that with either hand. I have a picture in my wallet of him from 1936. My mother always said I have his smirk.”

We watched the TV for a while.

“Why do you stay? I’m sure you could go anywhere if you wanted to,” she asked.

“Thought about that one a lot, haven’t you?”

“Yes. There has to be somewhere you like better. And don’t give me the curse excuse again.”

He sighed. Yes, there were many places he preferred more than Southern California, but finding Sunny to reverse the curse was important. Couldn’t be his true self hobbled like this. But…Carys was starting to be a second reason to stay. “Been in a lot worse places. Seen a hell of a lot of the world. New York was fun. Brazil was alright. Can’t stand Paris. The Orient was interesting. Met my first paladin in Japan.”

“Demons revel in anarchy, huh.”

“Most do. Vampires crave blood, violence, and sex. Everything boils down to the hunt.”

“You control your urges.”

“I’m old. It’s more about embracing that part and appeasing it in ways it can accept. I kill demons instead of humans because it’s still violence.”

She yawned.

“Go to bed, kitten. You’ve looked sleepy for the past half hour.

“I guess you’re right. We good?”

“Right as rain.”

She stood, ruffling his hair on her way out. “Night, William.”

- Book #1 - Releasing Jan. 1, 2016. Apple | Barnes and Noble | Amazon | Smashwords

First in a new series!

Carys Taylor has her life perfectly under control. Equipped with a nice inheritance, she goes where she wants, when she wants, pursuing anything that interests her. So when her old professor asks her to come on a research trip for his thesis, she's eager to tag along.

Until that ill-fated trip to the South American jungle changes her into a supernatural being. Now she's sprouting claws and stronger and faster than any human being in existence. The reclusive tribe calls her their Protector - but from what? And why now? Why her?

Carys is pulled into a world she never knew existed. Is she up to the task?

Thursday, December 24, 2015

#Christmas Scene #3 - Protector excerpt

Christmas Scene #3

Corinne joined me and William for a game of cards. Rummy. We chatted amicably. When the round was over, she said goodnight. I picked up the dishes and started cleaning up in the kitchen. He surprised me by helping.

“Didn’t think you went for the domestic.”

“I don’t, usually, but if you try to clean all this rubbish by yourself, you’ll be at it until dawn.”

“Thanks. I was just going to put away the leftovers and get everything that will fit in the dishwasher. The rest can soak in the sinks until morning. Could you get the Tupperware down from that cupboard?”

He handed me the containers, then resumed bringing in dishes from the dinning room. I was so glad I wouldn’t have to cook tomorrow. Parties were fun, as long as you didn’t have to clean afterward all the time.

“I’m going to give Genevieve riding lessons.”

“Her mum okay with that?”

“As long as she keeps her grades up. I’ll be back living here full time once my class is finished.”

“Of course. You are only there for the class.” It sounded like an accusation.

“I’ll still come up often, and everybody is always welcome here. If no fight is going on, I’ll probably be traveling again this summer. I haven’t been to Europe, yet, and there’s an opera company that keeps asking me to join their summer series. I loved going on vacation every summer as a kid, and I still can’t stay home for the season.”

“Of course.”

We worked for a while in silence.

“I can feel they’re going to need me soon,” I said.

“Who, pet?”

“The tribe I’m supposed to protect. It’s a hunch, in my gut, that they are going to call me back soon. This niggling worry in the back of my head.”

“You know you have back-up if you ask. Every one of ‘em will join you.”

“I know. But I can’t expect them to go into uncharted territory and fight someone else’s battle. Besides, I was made for this, right?”

“How do you plan on getting to the jungle fast enough to help? Do you think they’ll give you advance warning?”

“I doubt it will be that easy. It took us five days to reach them from L.A. last time. I’ll have to take the normal route unless I suddenly gain the ability to teleport. I don’t get why they didn’t pick someone from their own tribe? They had plenty of strong, healthy people.”

“What did they tell you?”

“They said a prophecy picked me. My description was passed on a hundred years ago, when they last did the ritual. They had been waiting for me. Would’ve been nice if they told me that before changing me. I didn’t get a say in this. I might’ve even volunteered to help if they said why they needed me. Instead, I wake up in a hut the next morning to be told about my new powers and destiny. Even then, he was vague. I found out by accident that I’m so lethal. I thank God none of my friends startled me back then. I could have hurt someone so easily.”

“How did you figure it out?”

I sat on a bar stool and sighed. “A guy attempted to mug me. He tried to grab my purse, and I reacted. I had him in a headlock with claws at his throat in a blink. He started begging me not to hurt him. I made him pass out, then called the cops on my cellphone.”

“Show me.”

I extended them on my right hand. “Two slashes at speed and the neck is severed through with these. The instinct always tells me to go for the throat. Hence the beheadings I seem to be known for.”

“I enjoy a good neck twist myself, when things need to be finished quickly, but I’d rather draw out a fight, though, just for the fun of it.” His eyes held a glint of glee, probably remembering a good fight.

“Would you kill anyone if you ended the curse?”

“I didn’t hunt indiscriminately before, Carys. I won’t hesitate to defend myself, if it ever comes to it.”

“That doesn’t answer the question.”

He sighed. “I’ve always made my own choices. The curse makes me see people as more than a meal when I’m stuck around them all the time without being able to feed. It took away my freedom. I hope you never know what that’s like, love.”

“Humans try to forget we can be monsters, but some can do it just as well as the real ones. Having a soul doesn’t prevent that. It always comes down to free will, and love.”

“What do you mean about love?”

“Love makes all the difference in a person’s actions. Caring about others, for others. Being selfless. Showing compassion. Someone that only has ‘love’ for their sense of self doesn’t care about the world around him or how he affects others. They cause hurt all around them without batting an eyelash. Love is an action, not a feeling. We have to choose.”

“You always have these deep thoughts?”

“Always. But, enough heavy stuff on Christmas night. Aren’t we supposed to be jolly?”

“Something like that. What now?”

“Did you watch the other movies I set out?”

“Yes, I did. Had to do something, with all you mortals asleep. You have good taste. I’m surprised you like movies that gory.”

I shrugged. “I’m just full of surprises. All the movies on those shelves are mine. I don’t own any I don’t enjoy. I wouldn’t have so many guy friends without liking war movies, or sci-fi.”

“Did I tell you how beautiful you look tonight?” He looked deep into my eyes.

“Not yet. This is a new dress.”

“It’s perfect. You’re so elegant, yet so warm.” His arm twitched like he wanted to reach out, but held back.

I blushed. Smiled. The man—vampire—was impossibly handsome when he was being sweet.

He glanced at the clock. “I should let you get to sleep so you can see them off in the morning.”

“Oh, wow, it is late. We’ll probably be on our own tomorrow. I think they won’t be back until the park closes. Goodnight, William. You’ll see to the lights?”

“Don’t I always? Sleep tight, kitten.”

I went upstairs, feeling sleepy now I was thinking of bed, and changed into a silk nightgown, washed my face, brushed my teeth. When I came out of the bathroom, I noticed a small box on the bed, and smiled, thinking this could only be from William. I was instantly curious of what he got me and opened the box to find a pair of earrings, each a dangle with three black pearls in succession.

I put them on and looked in the mirror. They really were gorgeous. I’d had no idea he would have such good taste (or cash), and black pearls were my favorite. I put them in my jewelry box, then snuggled under the covers and fell asleep with a smile.

- Book #1 - Releasing Jan. 1, 2016. Apple | Barnes and Noble | AmazonSmashwords

First in a new series!

Carys Taylor has her life perfectly under control. Equipped with a nice inheritance, she goes where she wants, when she wants, pursuing anything that interests her. So when her old professor asks her to come on a research trip for his thesis, she's eager to tag along.

Until that ill-fated trip to the South American jungle changes her into a supernatural being. Now she's sprouting claws and stronger and faster than any human being in existence. The reclusive tribe calls her their Protector - but from what? And why now? Why her?

Carys is pulled into a world she never knew existed. Is she up to the task?

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

#Christmas Scene #2

Christmas Scene #2

December 23rd…

Home. Finally.

Home at Christmastime, with the big old light strand around the roof and the white fake tree over-loaded with vintage ornaments passed down generations. The sticky Santa scenes on the windows. Every surface decorated with some kind of holiday knick-knack.

The tension finally uncoiled in my belly. I patted the three-foot light-up Frosty the Snowman on the head as I neared the front door. I was going to ring the bell, just to see her face, when she opened the door.


“Merry Christmas, Mom.” I dropped my bag and hugged her. “How are you feeling?”

“Fine. It’s been a good month.”

“You look a little tired.”

“Oh, I just stayed up too late watchin’ a movie. Look at how long your hair is!” We moved inside and she shut the door.

“Yeah, I was hoping you could trim it while I’m here.”

“Sure, sure. So, how’s college?”

The living room smelled like pine and cinnamon. Mom had been in the scented candles again. “Oh, you know. Busy. Academic. Amelia says hello.”

“I wish you could study full time, honey. You’d be halfway to your degree by now.”

I put my duffle in my room. “Maybe, but I like my job. How’s the diner? You lettin’ your managers help out?”

“Yes, Della. I follow doctor’s orders. You hungry?”

I’d been looking forward to her cooking for weeks. “I could eat.”

She grinned. “I’m sure I’ve got somethin’ quick… Any special people in your life?” she asked, her head in the refrigerator. Everybody’s heard about small town gossip. The queen of it stood right in this kitchen. Mama heard everybody’s stories in the diner.

“Quit fishin’. You know I’m in no hurry to add a man to my life.”

She put a ham steak in the microwave to reheat. “Sweetie, you’re almost twenty. I’d already had you by that age. Would it really hurt to bring home a boyfriend before I’m old and gray?”


“Della, I just don’t want you to be alone. Travelin’ everywhere… I worry.”

I squeezed her hand. It was cold. “I know. But I’m fine, really. I’m doin’ good, helpin’ the world.”

“That reminds me—we took another collection at church for your organization for Christmas.”

“Aww, you didn’t have to do that…”

She pressed an envelope into my hand. “Aid organizations always need funds. Don’t argue with your mother.”

I smiled. “Yes, ma’am.” It would go right back into the fund that paid her medical bills.

Mom used a Santa oven mitt to remove the hot plate. “Cider?”


“After your snack, we’ll head over to the diner to show folks you’re home.”

“I just got home, Mom. Can’t it wait until tomorrow?”

She pouted. “Well, I s’pose so, but they’d be so happy to see you, Della! The gals live for your stories of far-off places. Most of us don’t get further than Oklahoma City, you know.”

“Yes, I know, Mama, and I will share. But not today. I wanna sit on the couch and do nothin’ but watch movies and eat your famous cookies.”

She sighed. “Very well…go sit, eat.”

“Thanks, Mom.”

“Just glad you’re home, baby.”

My bedroom hadn’t changed since I was sixteen due to me not being home much, so it felt kinda juvenile to me now. Time to take down the Britney Spears poster on the back of my door. It was obvious Mom kept the room spotless, and I felt another pang of guilt for not being here. The room existed as a shrine to an innocent girl that no longer existed.

I couldn’t tell her that, of course. If I’d merely grown up and moved out, she could turn the room into a guest room, but I didn’t. Hadn’t. Keeping my room as it was probably held both of us in the past.

Gee, gloomy enough, Della? Get a grip. It’s Christmas, for goodness sake.

The next day, Christmas Eve, we visited our friends, Mom with plates of cookies. She must’ve been baking for a whole week. We’d be at my cousins’ tomorrow for supper, so tonight was only us. After fried chicken and apple pie, we sat in front of the tree to open one present each. I wrapped the silver brush before she got up this morning and she’d be getting it tomorrow. Tonight, I gave her a pair of earrings from Greece. I’d had them in my bag for two months.

“They’re gorgeous, Della! Tell me you didn’t spend a lot on these.”

“Mom, you shouldn’t ask how much your presents are!”

“I only want you to be wise with your money.”

“I know, but trust me, okay?”

“Of course, dear.”

I knew before I opened mine that it’d be a sweater. My Christmas Eve gift was always a sweater. Mom was the type to suggest a sweater at seventy degrees. “Thanks, Mom.”

“You’re welcome, sweetheart. Don’t stay up late, now, or Santa won’t come.”

I grinned. “Okay.”

Christmas Day kept me so busy, I felt normal again. Mom loved the antique brush. There were even a few tears.

I went out with a couple high school friends two days later. Walking back home in the evening, I felt a supernatural presence. I crouched under the pretense of re-tying my shoe and reached for the stake tucked into my sock. The feeling faded and I wondered if I imagined it. Could’ve been the cold giving me goose bumps.

Monday, December 21, 2015

#Christmas Scene #1

Christmas Scene #1

Right now, all I wanted was home.

“Della, let me look at you!” Mama held me out at arm’s length in Baggage Claim. “We need to put some meat on your bones. They’re obviously working you too hard.”

“I’m fine, Mom, really…” At five-foot-six and lean, I currently resembled a tall gymnast, like those girls on the college teams. They’ve grown into height and curves, but the power’s still there. I never wore make-up when I’d just be sweatin’ it off, so I still had the face of a kid.

“Your hair’s shorter, too. Who cut it?”

“Ma…” My braid stopped just past that knob on the spine above my shoulder blades. You learned quick that Sensei would use a ponytail or free hair against you, so most of the girls had short hair. I wrapped mine into a tight bun when I sparred. Mama always liked my hair down to my waist, though.

We had dinner and hung out, watching a Christmas movie, then she went to bed. When I lay down, I couldn’t fall asleep. My body was used to being exhausted at night and I’d done little more than sit the last twelve hours.

“Screw it.” I changed into active gear and snuck out my window, a hood pulled over my auburn hair.

Hunting in Guthrie this time was different. For one, the night was creeping below freezing. For two, I’d just thought of it as hunting.

Didn’t expect to find anything, really, but the practice made me feel alive. Anticipation, like waiting to blow out the candles, but darker.


They would fear me. If I did find a demon, I knew it would be toast tonight.

But no such luck.

When my nose lost feeling, I went home and climbed into my warm bed. Time here was precious.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Cover Reveal Day! PROTECTOR by @vivianlanewrite #books

Protector Cover Reveal

Today is the day for the pretty! Only one month away from release, folks. Head on over here to see the awesome cover created by Sotia Lazu!

Protector - Book #1 - Releasing Jan. 1, 2016. Apple | Barnes and Noble | AmazonSmashwords | Kobo |  

First in a new series! 

Carys Taylor has her life perfectly under control. Equipped with a nice inheritance, she goes where she wants, when she wants, pursuing anything that interests her. So when her old professor asks her to come on a research trip for his thesis, she's eager to tag along. 

Until that ill-fated trip to the South American jungle changes her into a supernatural being. Now she's sprouting claws and stronger and faster than any human being in existence. The reclusive tribe calls her their Protector - but from what? And why now? Why her? 

Carys is pulled into a world she never knew existed. Is she up to the task?

ARCs are still available. Win a paperback ARC at Goodreads, or an e-ARC at Library Thing.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Giveaway! Win a copy of PROTECTOR!

Win an ARC of PROTECTOR before release day!


    Goodreads Book Giveaway


        Protector by Vivian Lane




          by Vivian Lane


            Giveaway ends December 15, 2015.
            See the giveaway details
            at Goodreads.

    Enter Giveaway

Friday, November 13, 2015

New Series! Coming January 1, 2016 with PROTECTOR (Children of Ossiria #1)


First in a new series!

Carys Taylor has her life perfectly under control. Equipped with a nice inheritance, she goes where she wants, when she wants, pursuing anything that interests her. So when her old professor asks her to come on a research trip for his thesis, she's eager to tag along.

Until that ill-fated trip to the South American jungle changes her into a supernatural being. Now she's sprouting claws and stronger and faster than any human being in existence. The reclusive tribe calls her their Protector - but from what? And why now? Why her?

Carys is pulled into a world she never knew existed. Is she up to the task?

Releasing Jan. 1, 2016. Apple pre-order | Amazon pre-order | Barnes and Noble |

Cover reveal coming soon.

Book 2 will release February 1, 2016! The plan for Children of Ossiria is to try to release one book every month.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

#WIPWednesday excerpt. Untitled, coming January 2016. #shapeshifter #urbanfantasy

Untitled, coming January 2016

Chapter One

Fall 2002

Carys Taylor

Carys, next time someone asks you to go with them to the middle of nowhere, say no.

My old professor asked me to come along on a trip to study native music. He was cataloging the songs of an obscure tribe. I had nothing more important to do, so I said sure. Got all the necessary shots and documents, and we made the long journey down.

Little did I know, it would be a life changing experience.

Our destination was a small village in the heart of the South American jungle. How he ever heard of them, I didn’t know. Took us three days by boat to get there. Our team consisted of the professor, our guide/interpreter, the professor’s assistant who was using this trip as info for his thesis, and me. As a music therapist, I used music to heal people’s souls, so I would be lending my expertise in the emotional resonance of the songs.

Approximately fifty people lived in the village, some of the nicest people I’d ever met, instantly welcoming and glad to share their musical history. My job was recording the performances with the handheld camera. They kept staring at me when they thought I wasn’t looking. At first, I attributed it to them never seeing a fair-skinned woman before, but the stares continued through the week.

That should have been my first clue.

One night, they asked us to observe an ancient ritual in tribute to one of their gods. We were delighted to, since we were told it was only done once every hundred years. Witnessing a historical event? The prof was positively giddy.

The ritual happened that evening around a bonfire. They cast offerings in to the flames and said their prayers to the deity. We sat quietly out of the way, eager to learn. Once everyone was gathered around the fire, the elders began to chant. The oldest threw something into the fire, and an odd smoke rose from the flames.

The smoke started searching through the air like it had sentience. Looking for something. Was anyone else seeing this? The particles glowed blue and got brighter as the trail of smoke headed toward me. I stood from the log I’d been sitting on and backed away. It was definitely coming for me. Was this a hallucination? I tried to run, but the tribe closed in behind me.

“Let me go!”

The elders never stopped chanting. The smoke entered my nose, I screamed, and the world went black.

The next morning, I woke up in a hut and not my tent. The wise-man was there with our interpreter. He apologized for tricking me, but they felt it was necessary.


He spoke of a prophecy. A pale woman with blue eyes would come to them and be the Chosen vessel for the essence of the Cat. She would be infused with this essence through the ritual, and become the patron Protector of their people.

“What did you do to me to make me pass out, and what the hell does this all mean?”

He told me to reach out my senses, and I would know.

“My senses?”

“Breathe. Listen. Learn.”

I took a deep breath, and to my utter shock, every scent was intense. Sounds came to my ears I never noticed before—bugs, air currents, voices—and for the first time that morning I didn’t need my glasses.

I scrambled back on the bed. “I want no part in this! I have a full life back home!”

He chuckled and told me not to worry, that I was only required to come if the village was in danger. He said I would know what to do.

“What do you mean by being ‘infused with the essence of the Cat’?”

He said my heightened senses weren’t the only power I was given, and that I would be able to shift form at night. The instinct would guide me.

Whatever that meant! “I still don’t believe in all this.” It was stuff out of a movie, not real life! “You drugged me. You’re not keeping me here.”

He said I was free to go.

We were scheduled to leave that day, and said our goodbyes to the tribe. They all tried to give me gifts, but I just couldn’t take all that. After a lot of pushing, I accepted a woven bracelet and a necklace with a carved panther claw attached. The wise-man was the last to come to me. He told me to be careful, practice my new “gifts”, and that I would know if they ever needed me. He hoped I didn’t harbor him any ill will.

“’Ill will’? I’d report you to the authorities, but considering how remote this village is, I doubt it’ll do any good.”

I got in the boat, and a week later, I was home.

The interpreter, being a tribal member himself, never told my friends what had been done to me and I certainly didn’t want to talk about it. They assumed we all hallucinated from something thrown into the bonfire, and everyone had a hangover.

Having a stronger sense of smell was not a good thing in Southern California. Smog stung my nose. Neither was sensitive hearing, once my neighbor started construction on a deck in their backyard. I walked around with earplugs in for about a week until I started to get used to it. I was grateful for the sharp vision, though. I’d worn some kind of correction since I was eight, but I could read a street sign from almost a mile away now!

I wasn’t ready to accept something supernatural had happened, but they’d definitely changed my body. My asthma was gone and I no longer needed any medications. So, okay, I couldn’t take a deep breath without wanting to vomit and my ears had been ringing since the moment my plane was in the sky, but the visual acuity was cool. If you’ve always woken up with clear vision, you have no idea what it’s like to be able to see in the morning for the first time in nearly twenty years.

It was weird and difficult, but I slowly started to adapt.

A month later, it was my first day out doing something normal—shopping at the mall. Up to now, I’d avoided crowds, doing my grocery shopping when the stores were almost deserted. Walking to my car in the parking garage, my hands were full of bags, and a man walked behind me. At first, I didn’t think of hearing someone behind me, until his footsteps sped up to get close to me. He demanded my purse. I was willing to cooperate since I didn’t want to provoke him. Better my stuff than my life, right? That’s what the police tell you to do. So, I set down the bags, and the guy lunged for my purse.

I can’t tell you how I did what happened next.

Next thing I knew, I had the guy in a choke hold with claws pressed to his neck. Claws! The guy started freaking out, then, begging me not to hurt him. I tightened the hold until he blacked out, then called 911 on my cell phone. The police arrived, took my statement and the mugger, and I went home.


My fingernails turned into claws. That was NOT normal. Both hands? I stared at my left. Yep, both hands. Oh God.

And then the fight moves. What was that? This wasn’t The Matrix. I hadn’t been plugged into a machine for a kung fu download. Had I? What really happened in that village?


Two months later, I was teaching a class for two semesters at a university, so I rented an apartment and packed what I would need. It had been arranged long before my trip to the jungle. It was a long commute from home, so I preferred to stay there, even if it was only three days a week.

The change of scenery would be good for me. My friends and family didn’t know. I blamed allergies for staying at home. Didn’t want questions to come up when I hardly had any answers, so moving to a town where no one knew me seemed like a plus. And I hated lying to those closest to me.

Due to an inheritance—Grandpa invested in Microsoft when it was a baby company, so I didn’t have to work, but I enjoyed teaching a few voice students. Helping special cases. I had my Masters, and still took classes that interested me. It was a good life.

Well, had been.

After a week of class, it promised a challenge for the year. Distraction. Just the thing I needed to focus on. I read references on South American tribal beliefs in my spare time, but discovered nothing that would help me.

Alone in the apartment, I tested my new abilities.

Claw extension was controlled by simple thought. A little concentration and I could tune out strong odors and loud noises. But I knew that wasn’t all to my new powers…the old guy mentioned shape-shifting. I was afraid to find out what he meant, and avoided thinking about it after dark in case I turned into some kind of monster.

It would be my luck.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Wicked Alphas, Wild Nights release day! #pnr #newrelease #books

Wicked Alphas, Wild Nights

Your favorite authors (including New York Times and USA Today best-sellers as well as rising stars) share the steamiest scenes from their latest works!

Find your next red-hot read in this sizzling collection of paranormal romance scenes, featuring werewolves, dragons, vampires, witches, psychics, angels, goblins, aliens, a succubus, and sexy cowboy shifters.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | City Owl Press | Kobo | Apple iBooks | All Romance Ebooks

Sunday, September 20, 2015

COVER REVEAL! Wicked Alphas, Wild Nights #coverreveal #pnr #romance #anthology #wickedalphas

Wicked Alphas, Wild Nights

Your favorite authors (including New York Times and USA Today best-sellers as well as rising stars) share the steamiest scenes from their latest works!

Find your next red-hot read in this sizzling collection of paranormal romance scenes, featuring werewolves, dragons, vampires, witches, psychics, angels, goblins, aliens, a succubus, and sexy cowboy shifters.


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

#WIPWednesday teaser - Adam #vampires

#WIPWednesday - Adam

This is a little sample from his origin book.

From a work in progress:

Vittore wanted to keep Juliet far from me, but he also was under her command. I could not trust her to remain distracted from revenge. She would only move on to other pursuits if she got bored with causing me pain.

To that end, I made the long journey north from Roma to Ferriere. My family had long roots in the triangle of Genoa, Piacenza, and Parma, a region currently under Habsburg rule. Ferriere was in the center, in the mountains. In my letter to Mother, I had told her to flee Genoa and seek refuge with her brother. I hoped she heeded my warning whether Father agreed or not. They had to have gotten word of poor Serafina by now. Though there was no body, the amount of blood and the dead infant had to have convinced those in Parma she was no longer alive, too.

When was the last time I saw my mother? Before vampirism healed my eyes, I spent many years completely blind, and several years before that with limited sight. I would know her voice anywhere, though. She visited the monastery several times after Father shunned me for being an unsuitable heir, bringing lots of stories. It was only for her that I risked being on the road like this.

Spring brought longer days and shorter nights, a vampire’s bane, especially at my age of one year turned. Juliet and Vittore were old enough to risk cloudy days, but I would burn like paper. We normally traveled by coach, but I needed the speed of horseback, and so I rode from sunset to sunrise every night. May turned into June by the time I arrived.

Ferriere sat in Val Nure, higher than a hill but lower than a mountain. There were many vineyards. Trade occurred along the Abbot’s Road. I took a room, inquired where the house of my uncle was located, and retired for the day. The inn provided a fine supper with excellent wine.

My wretched state denied me the sight of immense beauty. While I saw better in the dark than a mortal man, it was still with a palette of shadows. Shades of dark blue, gray, and black. I longed for colors and the whole valley would be green this time of year. So I dreamed what I was not allowed to see, aided by my other senses. Vampires were predators like the wolf, scenting their prey, and while that heightened sense was not always a blessing, the ability to take in the nuances of the flora around one’s self was beyond what I could have ever imagined. Every scent came together to weave a tapestry rivaling the greatest art known to man.

Even as a boy, I always dreamt in sunlight and vivid color. Waking came with disappointment as a blind man, and now as a demon.

The valley contained eighty “castles” in various states of repair. The area had a long history of contention and fortresses were needed for protection. Some were little more than ruins now. My uncle lived in a stone manor house, what the French might call a chateau. The evening was warm, so the windows were open and people still milled about the property. I could not let anyone invite me in. I only wanted to hear my mother’s voice. To know she was all right. So, I skulked in the shadows like a thief, watching, listening…hoping.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

#Caturday #6 - Flirt!

Caturday #6

Scrapper has a 'man cave', a box he scratches up inside, sleeps in, and often stows toys inside:

One of his gray fur toys is behind his tail.

But this happened after the flash went off:

Such a ham! He'll flirt endlessly as long as someone's paying attention to him.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

#Caturday #5 - Hamming It Up

Caturday #5

Since it's summer, Scrapper is sleeping on the tile at the front door to cool off. He's so cute when he sleeps:

This is what he did after the flash went off:

Such a ham! He stayed in this pose until I was done taking the photo.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

#Caturday #4 - Pleasantly Plump

Caturday #4

This is probably Scrapper at his chubbiest. Food is his favorite thing ever and when I had two cats, I couldn't ration Scrapper without slighting the skinny one. But Scrapper also got chubby, like, overnight when he was 18 months old and filled out. He looked like a scrawny runt, then bam - big cat! He's twice the size of the 7lb average.

He's been an only cat for a couple years now, though, and I switched his food to a leaner high-quality variety.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

#Caturday #3 - Belly Rubs

Caturday #3

This is probably Scrapper's most common position. He's very warm, even for a cat, so he's usually spread-Eagle - and begging for a belly rub. You could pet him until he was bald and he'd still want more!

Saturday, July 4, 2015

#Caturday #2 - Happy 4th of July!

Caturday #2

Happy Independence Day!

Scrapper is a big ball of cat and the opposite of independent. Sleeping is one of his favorite things, behind food and getting his belly rubbed.

He only hides his face like this when his nose is cold or he's really trying to sleep undisturbed.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

#Caturday #1 - Meet Scrapper

 Meet Scrapper

This was taken years ago, but he still looks the same. He's 12 as of May 22, very talkative, and an Olympic-level shedder.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

New Release - The First Vampires by @vivianlanewrite

The First Vampires 

Jolana has served the Ossirian god of war as a seer for as long as she can remember. When he chooses her to be his instrument of destruction, she devotes herself to the task—starting with young Isa. 

Isa is a healer and when Jolana comes into his shop, he knows she is trouble but the beautiful Eridae cannot be resisted. Soon, he is drawn into a war between gods that will alter the universe forever.

This story is a prequel in the Echoes of Ossiria series.

Read for free here.

Amazon | Apple | Barnes and Noble | Kobo