Wednesday, March 31, 2021
I sit up and take the outstretched clothes. Asher turns around and faces the wall. He still has his jeans and shirt on from earlier in the night. My gaze falls to his ass, and how the denim hugs it just perfectly. Feeling brave, I ask, “You don’t want to watch?”
Asher peeks over his shoulder, a flash of purple meets my gaze before darting to my chest. “Do you want me to?”
I reach back, unclasping my bra, and let it fall to my feet. I’m not sure how much of me Asher can see, but I hope he likes this view better than the last. I shimmy out of my jeans and stand there in my matching lace panties. I crave the feel of Asher’s hands. I want him to hold me and let that fire that comes from his hands spread throughout my body. “I don’t know. Aren’t you supposed to want to see your girlfriend naked?”
He’s quiet for a long minute, then finally says, “Fake girlfriend.”
“Oh.” I'm gutted. It dawns on me that what I’m feeling is one-sided and everything that happened between Asher and me tonight was for show. I guess I can say we’ve officially crossed the line into friendship, but aren’t going any further. Friend Zoned. “Right.”
I pull Asher’s shirt over my head and slip my arms through the holes. It smells like what I assume he smells like first thing in the morning, before sweat and deodorant changes his scent, not that that's a bad fragrance. This shirt smells like fresh laundry detergent and a hint of spicy cologne. I take a second to sniff it again, then pull his gym shorts over my hips. They hang loose, so I roll the waistband a few times to keep them from falling off. “Done.”
Asher turns around. He stares at me, eyes trailing over my body, down to my toes, then up to my face again. I’ve slipped into Liam’s shirt a few times after sex. He’d always get the same goofy expression Asher has, one that says he likes what he sees. I smirk, then step backward until I feel the edge of his bed behind my knees.
“I’ll… uh,” Asher stammers as a flush of pink colors his cheeks. I bite my bottom lip to keep from grinning. I’ve never seen Asher like this before. He seems nervous, which is crazy, because I know he’s been with other women. Besides, it’s not like we’re about to have sex. He wouldn’t even look at me when I gave him the chance. “I’ll take the floor. You can have the bed.”
I scoot across the mattress, closer to the wall, then cross my legs in a sitting position. “It’s a big bed. You don’t have to sleep down there.”
Asher sighs and rubs the back of his neck. He looks pained and I can’t for the life of me figure out why. “I told you I’d keep my hands to myself tonight. I don’t know if I’ll be able to keep that promise sleeping next to you.”
Published: March 2020
The legendary Greys are back, and villages are burning with no one to stand in their way. An unlikely band of friends might have the only tools to challenge them.
As an orphaned outsider, Damien has worked his entire life to earn a place in the modest kingdom of Lakefall. His hard work does not go unnoticed by King Simeon who has always had bigger plans in mind for the young soldier.
Rowan left his old life years ago to settle down for a quiet life with his wife and daughter. The retired hero is thrust back into action against his will but discovers he may have missed being called the Dragonslayer by the citizens of Westland City. As his legend continues, he must confront the deeper layers of his secret ability.
Russam has completed a fifteen-year scavenger hunt to find a map that his father gave him directions to on his death bed. When he finds more than he can handle, he’s sent on another search for the famed Dragonslayer, Rowan Everleigh.
Isabella has always dreamed of moving to Westland City and attending the university. When she learns her parents have hidden her father’s famed past from her, it changes everything. She soon finds herself on an adventure armed with a secret of her own.
When the four of them are put together, they soon realize that it is more than just coincidence. Gods, wizards, and ancient bedtime stories will all have a hand in the outcome of this epic fantasy adventure.
Prequel Short Story to The Loro Chronicles
Published: February 2021
Rowan, Damien, Russam, and The Creature do not know each other, but their worlds will collide and change everything.
This is a four-part short story written as an introduction to the characters of the trilogy, The Loro Chronicles. Take a glimpse into the back stories of the main characters and see if this series is right for you.
When a dragon showed up in Loro, it was believed to be the end of life on the continent. The dragon burned through the northern countries of Loro, leaving only destruction in its wake.
Westland City's citizens hug their loved ones, waiting for the dragon to come for them next. The king of Westland makes the decision to send the best of his army to meet the beast before it reaches the city. Rowan Everleigh, the pride of the city, leads the army to ambush the dragon and sets events in motion that no one could have predicted.
Meet the characters that will shape the future of Loro and become legends.
The Loro Chronicles, Book 2
Published: February 2021
As the Greys continue bringing destruction on the southern countries of Loro, the name Zaanen is being whispered in the night. Only few know the truth, that he is not only real, but very much alive. The only question is, what is motivating his return?
Rowan the Dragonslayer trains tirelessly each day under the tutelage of the great wizard Axis, but his struggles to progress his magic abilities begin to weigh on him as time runs out. His enemy will not wait for him to gain mastery of his power.
Damien dons the magic armor decorated with the symbols of the gods. He has become the hero he wanted to be, but he realizes quickly that the responsibility of his task is larger than he could have imagined. The destructive Greys have gained more ground than him and his friends anticipated.
Isabella is a witch. She knows she can help in the fight against Zaanen and his Greys, but her father does not want her anywhere near the dangers of magic. As her relationship with Damien grows more complicated, she struggles to decide if she should share her deepest secret with him.
An ancient wizard in control of supernatural soldiers, a psychotic queen with her eyes on vengeance, and a demon from the Underworld that wants in on the action, all pose new threats at every turn.
About The Author
Christopher Crochet is the author of The Loro Chronicles. He is a thirty-four year old MRI technologist. Christopher lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana with his wife and two daughters.
Date Published: March 31, 2021
Publisher: Bluff City Publishing
To Be Forgiven, You Must Forgive Yourself
Abandoned by her husband, Elizabeth Marie Mitchell, a single mother with a teenage daughter, had no choice but to endure. She had to survive for both herself and her daughter.
What happens when someone you trusted hurts your daughter, and you are at fault?
Charles Mitchell ignored his heart and his responsibilities as a man, a father and a husband. Now, he has lost everything that matters. He wasn't there when they needed him, but he'll never fail them again.
What happens when you have the chance to be the man you were born to be, the man you know you can be?
What will Elizabeth and Charles do for the love of their daughter?
About The Author
Today, Angela lives in London where she continues to write and explore!
To learn more about Angela, visit her website: angelakayaustin.com/. Don't forget to visit Angela's YouTube channel: youtube.com/AngelaKayAustin!
Also, download Angela's podcast, Live Free, today from wherever you download your podcasts!
Before Karlee could get the next book on the shelf, a loud thunk made her jump. Spinning around to face the disturbance, she took a slow step forward. “Hello?” At first only silence answered her and then a distant click followed by another and then the sound echoed through the disorganized mess. She took another step, but it wasn’t until the lights illuminated the hallway clicked off that she realized what the sound was.
Backing away from the approaching darkness, Karlee turned to run. The clicking of the lights going out behind her grew louder. On the other side of the basement was the door that led outside and onto the street. She ran faster as her heart started to race. As the clicking grew louder and closer, she heard heavy feet hurrying along with it.
The lights directly above Karlee started to shatter. Sparks cascaded down on her and bounced across the floor. Making a quick turn, she could see the door just a few yards away, but just as she was closing the distance, she felt something tug at her hair. Letting out a shriek, she dashed towards the steps that led away from her tormentor. As one foot touched down on the stair, the other was yanked out from under her. She crashed into the wooden steps and felt a cold solid mass wrap itself around her ankle. It began to slither up her leg and she kicked out, desperately trying to clamber away.
There was nothing but darkness behind Karlee. Even the thing that held onto her and was scratching at her skin seemed to be made of shadows. She screamed as she felt the first hard tug. Reaching up, she grabbed the edge of the top step and held on. Another hard tug jerked her, nearly ripping her away from the relative safety of the stairs. Just when she thought her leg would be torn off, the door above her burst open and she was blinded by a brilliant flash of light shooting through the darkness.
“Be gone, shadow spawn!” a deep voice boomed, and Karlee felt the thick shadows jerk franticly away. Scrambling up the steps, she saw the shining man who had saved her and ran straight into his arms. A strong arm wrapped around her and she found herself tucked against the man’s side.
From beside the stranger, Karlee could see the source of the brilliant light. It radiated from a small stone he held in the palm of his hand. Beyond him, she could also see the illuminated darkness left in the library basement. The light allowed her to see the collection of books and the wreathing shadows that had chased her. Misshapen human shadows were wriggling in the light as if it was burning them. Staring at it, she felt fear rake over her, violently sending her heart into her throat and blocking the scream she couldn’t seem to conjure.The man slammed the door, hiding the horrid sight from Karlee and in one smooth motion, took her hand and turned towards the road. “I have to get you out of here,” he said as he started to pull her away from the library and down the sidewalk.
About the Author:
J. R. White has been telling stories for as long as she can remember. After her marriage in 2008 she found the freedom to dive headfirst into her personal world of fiction. Currently she lives in the Upstate of South Carolina with her family, where she fills her daughter’s head with fairy tales.
Tuesday, March 30, 2021
“It is time we had a talk.” Michael walked forward and sat in the deep red chair Joseph had occupied and watched as his brother took a seat as well.
“Is it too late for that now?”
“Maybe.” Michael spoke, but neither of them knew whether it truly was or not. They were always inclined to believe that too much had been done to ever hope this gamble might change the course of what was yet to come. “But I would feel remiss if I didn’t try.”
“Would you believe me if I said that I had missed you?” Lucifer was a liar. Everyone knew that much about him, even if they didn’t believe he existed. But this… this was perhaps the first time in centuries he had told the truth without compunction.
Lucifer smiled then, a handsome smile that hinted at another side of him, lesser known and rarely understood. It might shock some people to think that Lucifer Morningstar had not always been the way he was now.
Lilith was the hunter once again. The Angel Witch who stalked in the long dark of night, searching for another broken soul. But this soul had a name. And that name was the last clue needed on the shadowed road to Samael. Devon he was called, by those demon-kind he knew, but his true name she learned upon her return from the trip across the sea. He was exactly where Esther said he would be found, but as Lilith walked into the sparsely furnished room, she saw bodies strewn about the floor. Seven awash in ruddy stains, as what remained of their life spread in thick pools across the brown carpet.
Esther stood in her customary leather, twirling a butterfly knife, with an implacable expression painted on her face. “My apologies, Freckles, I really did try to wait for you, but the fat fucker over there ran his mouth and I wasn’t in the mood.”
“Jesus.” Lilith stepped over the body nearest the door, and winced at the red, ugly gash deep across his throat. “Tell me you at least left Devon alive, how the hell are we supposed to…”
“Relax, girl, you’ll live longer.” Esther spun the blade and with a flick of her wrist the bloody silver was sheathed again and hanging from her belt. “He’s wrapped up in the back room, if I only had a bow.”
A name is a fragile thing. You never really think about it until it truly matters, and for Samael, it seemed to matter now in a way it never did before. His name was taken from him, forgotten in the endless torments of this forsaken place. All that remained was the name given to him by the Angel who raised him from the pit. He never hated that name as much as now. I have to find it again. Not the name Lucifer gave me. The name my mother chose. My name.
“Remember who you were,” he said to himself as he wandered along a shadowed field that stretched as far as his eyes could see. “Her name was Amani, and she loved you.”
Her deep brown skin, her stark green eyes. The raven color of her hair, and the way it tumbled down her shoulders. Those were the things that came back to him, the remnants of memories dragged out of a forgotten past. Amani was her name, and she knew what his had been. If only he could hear her voice once more; it might stir that one forgotten piece out of the shadows that kept it hidden.
But Hell tore away what was light and good within a human soul, leaving only the pall of shadows and the whispers of madness that never left. As a demon, Samael had done everything he could to rid himself of fear. This place was rife with it, of course, and always near as well.
Now, he was here again, wandering the blasted fields of a place he hoped he would never see again. The fog was just as he remembered it, rotten and heavy in the air, hugging the ground and stirring in the stillness.
The tension drained from his rigid frame. Craft took a deep breath and stopped fighting the compulsion to answer her questions. “We were introduced to the program as an experiment. The best of the best taking war fighting to the next level. Once we’d signed on the dotted line, we were released from our units and reassigned to Team Fear. Before we knew who was on the team, we were injected with shit that made us lose our minds.”
“Wait. Describe it.” Her features were animated, curious and engaged. “Losing your minds how? What does that look like?”
“It looks like grown-ass men rolling in a river of glass. Horrific pain. Sensitivity to light. Headaches. We lost time.”
“We blacked out. Woke up bruised or bloody. Couldn’t remember training. Hell, half of that time, I wondered if I’d sold my soul. The doctors took months to titrate the proper dosage, which varied by individual.”
“Why did you stay?”
“Honey, do you really think they gave us a choice? We signed up for the program. We stuck it out. End of fucking story. Once the men in lab coats normalized our dosage, we no longer felt fear.”
She rested her elbows on the table, leaned on her folded hands. “Was it worth it?”
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