Monday, June 4, 2012

Shots at Redemption - Excerpt

My second short story collection, Shots at Redemption, released on Friday, June 1 from Musa Publishing.

Even paranormal beings sometimes need a second chance at love. Shots at Redemption:  we all want them. But do we get them?  

Garrett talked to Tabitha by the buffet table. How dare she? He was mine. Something cold and predatory slid over me.
I wound my way through the masses. The sinuous curves of my body slid in a seductive symphony. A smile eased over my features. The Dress glimmered unicorn white. Strobe lights bathed it in ever-shifting colors. I was the most remarkable woman here.

And Gary was finally going to get his due.
He stepped away from Tabitha. “Ms. Willowbalm, may I have the privilege of the next dance?”

I inclined my head as I took his arm. “I thought you were going to call me Janelle.”
“Of course.”
At the edge of the dance floor, one hand held mine while the other wrapped around my waist. It’s a wonder he didn’t hear my heart racing. A flush of heat warmed my face. His redwood and light musk scent enveloped me. I closed my eyes and breathed in his essence. A wide stupid grin stretched my features. I was dancing with Garrett Rowan. He was holding me.
“You’ve undergone a rather remarkable transformation this year,” he said.

“Things just seemed to fall into place.” I shrugged, knowing it made my cleavage more notable. His eyes flittered lower before jumping back to meet mine. “I’m surprised you noticed.”

“I like to think of myself as an observant man.”

Gary murdered us, the silken voice of The Dress snarled in my mind.

No, I thought.

Gary cannot be trusted.

This is what I w-want, to be here, with Garrett.

Mercury strands formed a net around my mind. My body jerked as they closed in.

No! I screamed in the confines of my head. I ordered my body to pull back, to shout for help. It didn’t respond. The Dress had seized control. Sweat prickled on the back of my neck.
A deep sadistic laugh was my only response. Foolish child. Gary’s blood will pave the way. The initial sacrificial lamb. The Council will fall to me this time.

Gary held me slightly away from his body. “Ah, Medea. It was about time you showed yourself.”

“Gary dear,” a voice that wasn’t mine spilled out from my lips. It was deeper than the voice I’d heard in my head from The Dress. I felt the muscles in my face stretch to a grin. “I’ll enjoy killing you.”

The spirit me screamed, unheard and unbidden. I couldn’t feel the warmth of his hand as it rested against the small of my back or where his other hand was conjoined with mine. Even his redwood and spice scent didn’t fill my senses. Was I dead? No. This can’t be happening.

Get out of my head, I snarled at the invader, Medea, Garrett had called her Medea. If I’d still retained control of my body, my legs would have bowed, unable to support my weight. Medea Oleander. Medea Oleander was inside my mind. And she wanted to kill Garrett. I couldn’t, no, I wouldn’t let her succeed.
* * * *
I hope you enjoyed the excerpt. You can find out what happens next in Shots of Redemption.

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