Welcome! To Flowers on the Fence Country! Because special moments of life come unexpectedly, highlighted in bright spots of color. Join me in my special moments, the moments when I gather fresh flowers, in this writer's personal blog that celebrates the little moments in life that are, in fact, the big moments. It's dedicated to the memory of a friend who shared with the world the Flowers on The Fence which I now share with all of you. For Gloria. With love.
Hey y’all!Today Flowers on the Fence country has a
visitor from Massachusetts dropping into its Southern cyber-kitchen.And that visitor has writing in her blood.Please drop in and visit with Margay Leah
Justice and meet –
more than a hundred and fifty years, the gray wolf has failed to roam the hills
of Massachusetts, leading to the belief that they are extinct. But with a
spattering of sightings across the Berkshires, the legend of the gray wolf
comes to fruition. The product of that legend, Micah Sloane will go to great
lengths to protect his kind from the threat of outsiders, who seek to exploit
the legend for their own interests. One thing he didn’t count on, however, was
finding his soul mate in the company of such men.
the first time she predicted a stranger’s imminent death when she was little
more than a child, Shiloh Beck knew she was different. Wishing to cultivate her
gift, her parents made the fateful decision to enroll her in a private school
for paranormally gifted children. Unbeknownst to them, the school was just a
front for a research facility simply called the Institute, whose secret board
members weaned gifted children from their families to exploit their gifts.
Shiloh has spent the better part of her life trying to escape the Institute and
reunite with the family she was told had abandoned her.
their first meeting, Micah and Shiloh share a connection that goes beyond the
normal to bond them in a way that love alone cannot. But before they can build
a life together, they must deal with the fall-out when the legend of the wolves
collides with the men behind the Institute.
Shiloh nearly leapt off the sill as his hand touched her
knee. It took every ounce of willpower she possessed to remain seated and
appear undaunted by the gesture. “I am…much better now…thank you,” she said,
becoming more unnerved by the presence of his hand by the minute. Oh, this was not good, not good at all.
The longer it remained there, the stronger her impulse to bolt became. Oh, no…
What was it
about this man that rattled her so and with so little effort on his part?
Sharing the same air with him was enough to send her pulses to the moon—and her
mind somewhere else, something new for her. Being this attracted to a man was
beyond her realm of experience. She didn’t know what to do with it—or about it.
Should she do anything? Should she pretend indifference? And why wasn’t he so deeply affected? It wasn’t fair.
Still confused, she gave him a weak smile, intent on
backing up her previous claim with the gesture. She feared it failed miserably.
When Micah returned her smile and lifted his hand from her knee, she felt
precisely one second of relief before he shook her world again by caressing her
face in parting. She stumbled back against the frame of the window, her lips parting
on a startled breath as a lightning bolt shot through her at his touch. Something
flickered in his eyes at her reaction—pain, perhaps—and he retracted his hand,
balling it into a fist as he turned away from her, preparing to depart.
In an instant, she realized her mistake. Along with it
came the knowledge she couldn’t let him go away angry or upset. After
everything he and his family had done for her, she owed him that much. She
grabbed him by the shirtfront to stop him, and a shock of awareness shot from
her hand directly into his heart, just beneath it. She could see it in the gaze
he leveled on her then, could hear it in his breath trapped within his lungs, feel it in the missed beat of his heart.
But then, all sense abandoned her, and her
heart skipped a beat as he held her hand firmly to his chest with one of
his own and lifted the other to her head, anchoring it against the window
frame. Slowly, his eyes never straying from hers, he leaned across the space
separating them. His lips brushed hers, like a whisper, before he withdrew,
tilted his head to the side, and advanced again. This time the kiss was fuller,
penetrating her every defense, both physical and emotional, but still not long
enough for her. He retreated once again after a fraction of time and hovered
before her, scarcely an inch away. Watching her. Waiting.
Her heart beating a frantic tempo now, Shiloh abandoned
all of her reservations and her good sense to swoop in for a more vigorous
kiss. So vigorous, in fact, she knocked him off his perch through the open
window. Only quick reflexes honed to perfection at the Institute prevented her
from tumbling after him.
Bracing herself against the sill, she leaned out the
window as far as she was able and watched his descent from the slanted roof to
the ground below. She lost sight of him the moment he slid beyond the reach of the
light from her window. But then she heard him land with a thud —and a howl—on
the ground in front of the back porch when he failed to catch himself on the
roof edge. She clasped a hand over her mouth to silence her reaction and
waited. When he didn’t rouse right away, panic shot through her and she leaned
out another few inches.
“Micah? Are you okay?”
“Fine,” he answered after a few moments, appearing
beyond the overhang of the roof as if to prove it to her. “Nothing hurt but
what’s left of my pride.”
Relief coursed through her at his statement, and she
allowed herself the laugh she’d literally held back before. Her mirth was cut
short, however, by his next words.
“Hey, Shiloh! We’ve got to stop falling for each other
His laughter followed her as she ducked back into the
room. She could still hear it even after she closed the window, though not as
well. Oh, Lord. She rested against
the cool pane of glass and touched her still-tingling lips with shaky fingers. Was she? Falling for him? Was that what
this crazy-mad feeling inside of her was?
Hey y’all!Yes, Flowers on the Fence country is still alive and well, it’s just, I haven’t been sure if Gail Roughton’s been alive and well over the last two months!A surprise release, final galley on one book, content edits on another, and two more already with covers waiting for me to supply their completed contents in support of that surprise first release!As we say down here, I been busier than a one-legged man at a square dance.(Well, we don’t really say that, but I couldn’t think of one we do say off the top of my head, so I just made one up.)But here’s a delightful post to make up to my wonderful Fence for neglecting it for so long!
Presenting – Karina Fabian – Live!On her Live and Let Fly Book Tour!
An Apologia on Extortion, An Acceptable Dragon Practice
As told by the dragon, Vern
Gail offered to host us on her blog for the Live and Let Fly book tour.(Great story in which I take on dangerous demigods, maniacal middle managers, government bureaucracies and more, rising victorious with style in order to get a new roof for my dump of a lair.)Gail asked for a post on “whatever,” and Karina passed it on to me.
There are some people who will read Live and Let Fly and may come to the conclusion that I’m selfish.After all, the world was in peril, bad guys were on the loose, and I was holding out for a bonus.A big bonus.Well, all I can say is, those people are right—if I were human.
But let’s face it; dragons have different standards.
Before I start, let me define apologia:a defense of one’s opinions or actions.It is not an apology.I am not the least sorry for holding back information from my temporary employers while some evil overlord no doubt moved forward on her diabolical scheme.I will, however, be glad to explain why.Here’s the scene in question:
Mordash just leaned forward, his hand out, his eyes glinting. "I'll have our people analyze these—"
Grace started to hand him the files.
I set my large paw between them. "Not so fast. There's one very important detail we're missing," I said. I pulled out of my pocket one of the most important tools in the private investigator's repertoire.
The receipt book.
"What're you doing?" Mustache Mordash asked as I took out my small inkpot, opened the lid and dipped my writing claw into it.
"Our rescue was strictly an independent operation, remember?" I tossed Rakness a dark look but spoke reasonably enough. "So any information we might have acquired on said operation would be our own—"
"You mean to sell this information to us? I thought we were trying to protect this country; both our worlds, for that matter. What kind of patriot are you?"
I looked at him like he was a stupid mortal and didn't mention that I wasn't a citizen of the United States—or any nation, come to think of it. "Funny thing about saving the world," I mused. "It always manages to get un-saved. Kind of wrecks the job satisfaction factor. Philanthropy, though... Grace, how much did the Christian Brothers say they needed to start that school in Territory?"
Grace's eyes lit up. "Well, seven hundred fifty thousand, but the diocese and FlintCorp are contributing."
"Right. Some kind of matching funds deal." Even though I had already done the calculations in my head, I wrote them down. Dramatic effect. Very important.
Mustache blanched. "Are you out of your minds? You said yourself the forces of evil could be rising—"
"Exactly. Which is why a morally-based education for the underprivileged youth is so important. Now if we consider operating expenses for the first year..."
Mustache glowered. "And if the information you 'hypothetically acquired' is useless?"
"Then I'll be glad to negotiate a discount the next time you hand us a mission and some commercially available tech toys and abandon us at twenty thousand feet." I ripped off the top copy with a flourish and handed it to Mustache. He looked from my hand to Grace's, but she'd already returned the thumb drives to her sleeve pockets. He snatched the bill out of my claw.
"Let me make some calls," he growled. He spun his chair around, dismissing us.
#1. Dragons are immortal.I tend to have a long-term view of things, having seen the extinction of the dinosaurs (known as The End of the Biggie Sized Meal, as far as I was concerned), and the rise and fall of empires.Even if I hadn’t succeeded, things would have been chaos for awhile, but hey, the world recovers.Been there, seen that.
#2Dragons are confident.I was on the case—me, Vern.I defeated Quetzalcoatl when I was barely the size of a Labrador, and without any help from secret government agencies.If I hadn’t given them the information, I still knew it, and they could have just followed me.Might have been easier, come to think of it.
#3Dragons are treasure seekers.Thanks to St. George, I don’t get to enjoy treasure anymore, however.In fact, I life in a dump of a warehouse on the bad side of Los Lagos, Colorado, with (at the time) a leaky roof and no hoard.Since raiding museums and banks is frowned upon, I get my jollies where I can.
#4 The money went to a good cause.The school I helped fund with BILE’s money is almost finished.I can’t collect treasure, so I go for good deeds, nowadays.
#5I was ticked off.Not the best of reasons, but angry dragons are dangerous; better to get my satisfaction by extorting some extra cash from my employer than to flame his desk, don’t you agree?
Incidentally, I didn’t want to do this blog.I’ve got my hands full training up an apprentice superhero.So I held out until Karina offered me a half a lamb to do this.Bribery, or simple payment for services?
Decide what you want.I’ve got a veal lunch waiting.
And where can you find Vern (and hopefully Karina, 'cause she really doesn't need to let him out unsupervised, I don't think)? Well, Karina Fabian is an award-winning fantasy, science fiction and horror author, whosebooks make people laugh, cry or think—sometimes all three.Check out her latest at http://fabianspace.com
Live and Let Fly releases April 20, 2012. In the interim, check out: