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Kit news…read Chapter One + sale on earlier books

Kit Colbana books

The Kit Colbana books are on sale…if you want to get caught up, now is a great time!

need to get caught up? Books 1-4 are all on sale…
Book #1
Book #2
Book #3
 Book #4
Something wicked this way comes…
The arrival of a very important person in her office seemed to be the start of a lot of problems for Kit Colbana, investigator extraordinaire.  Claiming that he needed somebody with her special skillset, he sends her on a series of jobs that made little to no sense until one culminated with both her and her partner, Justin barely escaping with their lives.
Back in Orlando, they go their separate ways to recover, Justin heading to the house of a local witch, while Kit returns to the Lair, where she’s recently been living with her lover Damon, the Alpha of the Southern Cat Clans.
There’s barely a chance for to catch her breath before trouble of the highest order comes knocking on her door. This time, it’s the form of a psychic by the name of Nova.  Nova has bad, bad news…Justin has gone missing and so has the witch who was going to put him up while he healed. Colleen, one of Kit’s closest, dearest friends.
With all sorts of non-humans disappearing, fury doesn’t even touch what Kit is feeling as she heads out to hunt down the people responsible.
But Kit isn’t the only one out on a hunt…somebody is hunting for her…somebody Kit would rather never, ever see again.
*****
Kit Colbana series

 

It was just pure dumb luck that I found her at all.

The… Well, I can’t say it was a house, but it had been her home. She’d left it weeks ago, maybe longer. It was dying, too.

Granted, when I’d been sent out to look for her, I’d thought maybe it was another wild goose chase—the first job had been a pain in the ass, too.

But this one…

Hell.

I was staring at a dryad.

A real dryad.

She turned her head and stared at me with eyes the color of good, strong oak. In her hand, she had a branch she used to draw circles in the earth.

After a few seconds of us studying each other, she went back to looking out over the river, her gaze sad.

“What is it you want?” she asked, her voice reedy and thin.

Like she was fading, dying as swiftly as the tree she’d left behind.

As I fumbled for an answer, she lifted the branch and plucked off one of the leaves. They were still green. But the moment she plucked that single leaf away, it withered, shriveled, and then it was dust—even before it hit the ground.

“I…” Uneasy, I licked my lips. “Your tree is dying.”

“No.” Those dark brown eyes came back to mine. “It is already dead. It died when I left it. It just hasn’t figured that out yet. It will. But that isn’t what you want.”

“Why did you leave it?”

“Because the wind whispered it was time.” She lifted a shoulder and the wispy strips of cloth that made up her garments drifted with the movement before settling back into black. She was more naked than clothed—covered at her breasts and hips. Her skin was a mottled mix of brown and tan. She could stand in the trees and scarcely be seen, but standing out here on the side of the road and gazing into the river, she stood out.

That was how I’d found her.

I’d been heading back to East Orlando, carefully thinking through the call I’d have to make, when I saw her. I’d been driving the backroads, mostly because I wanted to think, and all the traffic on the main roads annoyed me.

The last thought I’d had before caught sight of the woman had been…I never should have taken this stupid job.

My current client—I now realized—was a self-important, pompous prick. But I’d accepted the contract, and for another three weeks, I was giving him twenty hours a week for work of a sensitive nature. His term, not mine.

The first job, I’d been asked to find out if there was any truth to the rumors of a Green Man who might be living in Alabama—he had a locale and a few names; he wanted me to look around and see what I thought. I’d also been asked to talk to the families of a couple missing NHs while in the area. Missing non-humans was why I’d taken the damn job to begin with.

Missing people. He had connections.

There weren’t many who had more connections than the President of the United States of America, after all.

When I’d told him I didn’t see the connection between a possible Green Man and the disappearances, he’d pointed out that a Green Man would have ways of seeing things happening in nature that I could never see.

Well…true enough.

But if there was something weirder than a shifter in those decaying woods, then I hadn’t felt it.

My boss hadn’t seemed bothered when I’d been unsuccessful. But I hadn’t wanted to tell him I’d found a dryad’s tree…and no dryad.

Right now, though, I wanted even less to tell him I’d found the dryad.

“The wind told you it was time?” Raking her up and down with a look, I shook my head. “What else is the wind telling you to do?”

“The wind tells me to do nothing.” A serene smile curled her lips as she plucked off another leaf. This time, when it shriveled and faded, she seemed to fade a little more, too.

Oh, shit.

“Is that from your tree?” I asked softly.

“Yes. All that is left, all that is living.” She plucked another leaf. “Once it is gone…”

“So why are you killing it?”

“Because unlike Albus, I am not strong. I cannot stand up to pain and torture. Even cutting down a single tree would break me, and he has much more in mind than cutting down trees.”

Abruptly, she wrenched a handful of leaves, four, five, six… Dust blew around me and I rushed to her as she swayed, then staggered. She felt lighter than air as I eased her down. Her skin felt like the smooth bark on a young tree. “What are you talking about?”

She just shook her head. “It’s been a long time coming. This…this is best. I’ll see Albus soon.”

She tried to fumble a few more leaves off but her hands shook too much.

“Please.” She looked at me.

My phone rang.

She continued to watch me with those calm, patient eyes. Patient, solid. Like an oak.

I took the branch and stripped the remaining leaves off as the phone rang again.

By the third ring, she was withering away, turning to nothing but dust and ash that blew away in the soft, chilly fall breeze.

I answered the fourth ring.

“Ms. Colbana, I was calling for an update.”

“I found her.” Dragging a finger through the dust, I rose to my feet and stared down. Even the branch was gone. “She’s dead, sir.”

 

 

“He’s pissed.”

Shanelle Maguire was a beautiful bitch and she delivered the words in a stark voice as she dropped into the chair across from my desk.

“I gathered that.” I’d just finish talking to him myself. Whitmore was a pain in the ass. “Did he send you here to snarl and snap at me in hopes of making me do better?”

She snorted. “Like that’d do any good.” She skimmed her hands back over her hair in what I’d come to realize was a nervous habit. Beautiful bitch or not, I’d come to sort of like her over the past ten days. She was blunt and didn’t hold back the truth, something I could definitely appreciate. She was also manipulative as hell—something I less appreciated—but she knew how to make things happen. “Look, I was standing out—”

“This is my shocked face.”

“Shut up,” she said, sighing in annoyance. “I heard you explaining what happened. What were you going to do? She wanted to die. Although…wow. Picking leaves off a tree branch—that’s crazy.”

“Dryads have a connection to their chosen trees.” I shrugged and thought of the forest giant I’d gone back to look at before returning home. It hadn’t turned to dust, but it was dead. It had been an oddity, standing there in the middle of the forest where so many trees had already gone brilliantly orange and yellow, but its leaves had been green…mostly. Some, though, had been going brown. Not yellow or orange, the way you’d think.

But brown.

All the leaves had been gone the second time I saw it and the branches hung despondent, as if the tree’s strength had simply drained out of it with the life of the dryad gone. I’d touched the bark and it had crumbled under the light pressure.

A few storms, a few hard rains, and it would come crashing down.

“So she just lay there, plucked the last few leaves and died, huh?” Shanelle wasn’t even looking at me. She was staring off at nothing, looking about as tired as I felt—although I doubted it was for the same reason.

“Faded into dust,” I said, carefully dancing around the fact that I wasn’t telling the complete truth. I’d had to do the same with Whitmore, but for some reason, I was reluctant to explain that I had been the one to strip away those few remaining leaves.

Whitmore had really wanted to talk to that dryad.

My gut was all twisted and hot as I remembered what she had said.

“Because unlike Albus, I am not strong. I cannot stand up to pain and torture. Even cutting down a single tree would break me and he has much more in mind than cutting down trees.”

Who was Albus?

Who was the he she’d been referring to? I had a bad feeling it might be my client—but there was no way I could even try to figure that out without questioning him; everything in me was saying Don’t…

I thought of asking Shanelle, probing gently. I knew how to dance around things and be subtle. It wasn’t my greatest skill, but I could do it.

While I was debating, though, the door swung open.

The sight of the man standing there was enough to distract me, though.

“Justin…”

I hurtled across the room and caught him up in a hug so hard, he was laughing and wheezing at the same time. “Careful there, Kit…I break.”

I didn’t care. “You’re awake.”

“Seems that way. Although if you keep squeezing the life out of me…”

Two weeks ago, Justin had almost died. The first week, he’d been in a coma. He’d started to stir, but another friend of ours, Colleen had used her healing to put him back under.

“The swelling in his brain has gone down, but there’s still a lot of healing to do—the area of the brain that controls magic has been heavily damaged and the longer he rests, the more likely it will be that he’ll regain full control.”

We’d agreed. He needed to stay asleep for a bit longer, but Colleen could only hold him for a few more days before she had to bring him back.

“I didn’t know she was letting you up today.”

He patted my back when I sniffed.

Absently, I’d realized Shanelle had left and I still needed to talk to her. But that could wait.

Safety is an illusion… Final Protocol

Like sci-fi romance?  Here ya go!  Final Protcol, science fiction with a erotical, romantical sort of twist.  But be warned, it’s a little dark.  That warning about questionable consent?  It is not tongue in cheek.

FP

Tip #1: Don’t get on her bad side. Tip #2: There’s no good side.

Her name is Silence. If she was ever known by any other name, she doesn’t remember.

She is a killer. If she was ever anything else, she doesn’t remember.

She has an owner. If she was ever free…well, that she does remember. She was free and then somebody gave her to a madman to pay a debt that wasn’t hers. She’s his toy, his pet…and his trained killer. She kills at his whim or she dies.

She has a target. Her so-called owner…the man who makes her life a living hell. If she could kill anybody in the universe, it would be him. But he holds her life in his hands.

And she has a wish—to find a man she barely remembers. A man she knows she once loved. The man who betrayed her and stole away her freedom.

With one final target between her and the tantalizing promise of freedom, she moves in for the kill. There’s one problem. There’s something strangely familiar about her mark. Something that echoes in the void where love used to live.

Warning: One woman with a mission, one evil bastard who lies as often as he breathes, and a man who’ll stop at nothing to find what he lost. Be warned…some questionable consent lies within.

“You failed me, Silence,” he murmured. He reached up and stroked a finger down my cheek.

“I explained the circumstances,” I said, keeping my voice steady.

“Hmmm.” He slid a hand around, his fingers idly probing the spot at the nape of my neck. To some, it might look like a lazy caress. To me, it was a dire threat. The bioseal was buried there, inside my brain matter, locked within me.

His hand fell away and he looked over my shoulder.

And even though he’d done this more than once, even though I’d suspected he’d do it again, there was no time to brace myself.

The biotronic system was too fast to evade, and in a heartbeat, I was trapped in what looked like a gossamer web but felt like bonds of ’stene. As it tightened around me, I sucked in as much air as I could, expanding my rib cage. Once, he’d done this and it had wrapped around me so tightly, I’d thought I’d smother.

But that wasn’t his torture today. It stopped when it had me restrained, and Gold went about stripping my weapons away.

Biotronic arms slid out from behind me, grabbing the weapons from him and whisking them away. He found every last one, including the garrote I’d tucked inside my collar, dart I carried on me and the stunners. There was a small glass vial of poison and he took that, holding it up to the light and studying it before turning it over to the biotronic arms. In moments, he was done and I felt stripped bare.

I’d rather have weapons and be naked when I had to deal with him than have no weapons and face him like this. Bound and trapped.

“One might think you didn’t feel safe coming to see me,” he said, studying me from under the thick fringe of his lashes.

“Safety is an illusion with you.” I clenched my hands into fists. If I could get free, I could kill him with my bare hands. I knew how. He’d seen to that.

Samhain | ARe | Amazon | iBooks | Kobo | BN

sci fi romance

Claws…

Just a couple more days, guys!

chang

“Hello, Kit.”

“Chang.” I cocked my head. “Sorry to crash in like this…sounded like serious stuff. Am I interrupting?”

Chang had an innate courtesy. He’d brush it off. Of course not. How are you, would you like some tea

To my surprise, the only response he made initially was to sigh.

It was a soft, heavy sigh, one that carried a world of weariness. “I had to call a family up north with grim news. An awful sort of call to make.”

“I…” I stopped for a moment. “I’m sorry. Are there…problems?”

An odd question to ask, maybe, but the look on Chang’s face wasn’t one that spoke of somebody who’d lived to see a ripe old age and then died peacefully in his sleep.

From the corner of his eye, he watched me. There was a strange expression to his features, as though he wanted to say something, but then he sighed and said, “No. Sit. I’ll fix tea. You’ll tell me why you’re here.”

There was no point in arguing.

Chang had fallen back on his role of courtesy.

There was no getting out of it now—and no chance of tugging out any details about that phone call, either.

I waited until I had my tea in hand—tea was a personal addiction of mine, almost as bad as the soaps and lotions and other girly things I bought obsessively. Breathing in the sweet and spicy scent, I sighed. I doctored it with sugar and cream. I liked my tea, with just a little more sugar than most people. Or a lot more sugar.

“How you can drink it that way confounds me,” Chang said. “I keep trying to break you of that habit, but it doesn’t work.”

“To each their own.” I shrugged and took my first sip. Perfect.

Chang had a look of amusement and revulsion on his face.

“When you spend a good ten years of your life scrapping just to get enough water and food to fill the hole in your belly, you develop odd cravings.” I shrugged it off.

Chang’s eyes fell away.

I scowled inwardly, wished I hadn’t said anything. I’d dealt with more abuse in my life than most people had ever heard of—I’d come to grips with what my family had done and generally dealt with it, in my own unique sort of way.

Sometimes, I was even able to not be ashamed of it. But it made other people uncomfortable. Honestly, that’s just plain stupid to me—it happened to me—if I can deal with it, then why can’t they?

But then I had to deal with people looking away, or lapsing into silence…or just…fading away.

“Sorry,” I said, my voice tense.

“Why?” Chang said quietly.

I stared at him, opened my mouth—then snapped it shut. “Fuck it. Never mind.”

But he was too insightful, by far. Unlike many shifters I knew, he didn’t just go by what his senses told him. He looked at people. Saw beneath the surface. Sometimes, he saw so deep, it pissed me off.

“I’m not aggravated with you for speaking of your childhood,” he said softly. “In a way, it…humbles me. I know you don’t always speak freely of your past, Kit.”

He rose.

The languid way he moved couldn’t be called pacing, not by any means.

But Chang rarely made wasted moves and the way he moved from the window at the back of his office to his wall of weapons then to his desk to straighten the non-existent clutter there before repeating the circuit was nothing but wasted movement. And it was done with all the elegance, grace and speed he did everything else with. “At the same time, the thought that any soul could treat a child as I know you were treated makes me…”

He looked up.

For the first time in all the time I’d known him, I saw a faint glow roll across his eyes.

The flash was gone so fast, I couldn’t even place it—just a glow of color too light to belong in that dark gaze, and then it was gone. “It angers me. Children should be treasured.”

“That’s how the world works sometimes.”

His eyes held mine. “And sometimes, the world sucks.”

“I’ve found myself thinking that a lot lately.”

“Yet another reason I like you, Kit. You are a wise woman.”

At that, I snorted. “I’m a lot of things—wise isn’t one of them.”

He chuckled and the tension in the air passed. He returned to his seat and faced me. “Let’s discuss why you’re here. Not that I’m not delighted to see you, of course.”

He’d never say it, but I suspected he had things to do, secrets to pass on and people who needed to kill or be killed.

That was his job, after all.

Since I respected that, I didn’t beat around the bush.

“I’m tracking down—or trying to track down—some information. I could use your help.”

He arched a brow as he lifted his tea cup to his lips.

He’d help if he could. I knew that. Just like I knew he’d stonewall me if he couldn’t.

“NHs are disappearing. I need to know about any shifters who have gone missing…specifically some in Georgia. I need information and if anybody has it, it’s you.”

The cup froze at his mouth.

Without taking a sip, he lowered it. Then he put it down and moved behind his desk to stare out the window. “Who have you been talking to, Kit?”

I started to move my knee back and forth. “Am I going to sound terribly childish if I say I asked you first?”

“Sound as childish as you want. But you’re more likely to get answers from me if you cooperate.” His eyes narrowed ever so slightly. Then a faint smile appeared on his face. “You can always ask Damon. However, if you wanted to do that, you would have. You often end up in messes that worry him, a fact I’m sure you’re aware of. This is likely why you came to me instead.”

“You’re telling me this because…” I drummed my fingers on the arm of the chair as I stared at him.

“Only two people possess the information you’re looking for—or possess an in-depth knowledge of it. That I know of. Damon hasn’t spoken to you—he wouldn’t, not about this. If somebody has spoken to you…” He let the words trail off.

“If you’re worried my source might be behind these disappearances, you can draw your claws back in, Chang.”

“My claws aren’t out.” A brow lifted. “Yet.”

Amazon | BN | iBooks | ARe | Kobo | Smashwords

Some news! Final Protocol

I’ll be having at least one more J.C. Daniels book out this year…but it’s not a Kit book.

It’s not urban fantasy, either.

J.C. is trying her hand at science fiction. SF with a splash of romance.

Here’s a snippet of FINAL PROTOCOL, due out from Samhain in July.

~*~

Some people said that this was what Old Earth would be like by now. Well, except for the population thing.  Aris still had a thriving population.  Disease and war had all but decimated Old Earth.  There were rumors that those who had remained behind no longer even resembled anything that we’d consider human.

Personally, I think human is just another word for animal.  None of us are worth much.  Me, included.

The ariste were a different beast altogether. Some of the kindest, most gentle people I’d ever come across resided here, on this hot, desert planet that travelled too close to its sun.  The people made me nervous and I wanted nothing more than to kick the dust of this planet off my shoes and leave it far behind.

Leave these smiling people far behind.

I had very little use for people in general.  If I couldn’t fuck it, then the only time I was likely to come in contact with anybody was when I was sent a contract to kill.

Like this old man, with his round, cheerful face and his silver eyes—ariste eyes, hidden behind the tinted lenses he wore.

I was here to kill him.

And he knew.

A smile creased his face as I moved into the room, not bothering to conceal myself.

He already knew I was there.  Why bother to hide?

Either he’d called for help, which would mean I had to move things along, or he thought he could handle me myself.

Neither would change the outcome.

He would die, because the alternative was that I would likely die and I didn’t plan on that being the case.

He nodded at the table where he sat.

“Would you join me?”

I paused, my hand on the darts I’d planned to use.  The problem was he hadn’t been on the long, narrow balcony taking his normal walk.  He was ariste, and one of the older ones.  They had a thing about the setting sun.  It was a religious fascination as far as I could tell.  All of the houses had balconies that faced the west, so they could watch as the brutal, burning sun sank below the horizon.  Even the poorest of families would struggle to get a simple opening so the family could face the death of the day.

Cree Ru was far from poor.

Yet he hadn’t taken his sunset walk.

“Come.” He smiled at me.  “Sit.”

I said nothing. I knew better.  My voice could be used to track me, pin me to the crime, if anybody was successful at hunting me down.  I’d evaded capture on a dozen planets in four different systems. This was an amateur’s mistake.

Just like walking in that open door was an amateur’s mistake, I chided myself.

“You will not sit then.” Cree nodded.  “Very well.  I’ll speak a bit.  I’ve time yet.”

He must have sensed something because he slid me a small smile.  “No.  The authorities weren’t alerted.  I sensed you three days ago and had the time since then to decide on the actions I’d take.  First, I had to think about who must have hired you.”

That wasn’t an answer I could give him.

I accepted the money, the job, all from my handler. There were other things I took from him, and some things he forced on me, but he never told me who hired me.  It was essential, he’d once told me, that he protect his clients.  Names were never given.

Cree didn’t let my silence stop him as he leaned back, steepling his fingers together as he looked out into the night.  He had thick, floor to ceiling walls of what the locals called plaris.  It made me think of the pilastene, a manufactured material that was used in almost everything for those who’d settled the New Earth colonies.

The NE colonies weren’t home to me, but many of my tools were NE made.  It was what I was familiar with, what I was used to. Pilastene was nearly unbreakable, safe to manufacture and inexpensive.

Plaris, like ‘stene, was durable, and nearly unbreakable, something that served this volatile planet well, designed to endure quakes that could have leveled cities.  His entire home was made of plaris, and the windows were the clear stuff, the most pricy form of it out there.  Eyes on the night sky, he studied the twin moons and said, “I hated to admit it to myself, but there are only two people who would have done this. Only two who would benefit.  My son and his wife.”

Arching my brows, I edged in closer, searching for weapons.  So far, I’d yet to see a single one.

“I cannot tell if the look on your face is curiosity or merely an attempt to distract me.”  He sighed and then reached out, pushed a plate toward me.  “If you are any good at your job, you’ll recognize this.”

My eyes moved to the plate, a thin disk of what looked like hammered gold.

The sight of the three small berries there made my belly clench, even if I was there to kill him.

Death’s seal, the most poisonous plant in three systems.  Deadly, and outlawed on almost every planet in those three systems.  Just the touch of it on the tongue was enough to kill a child.  Half of a berry could kill a woman my size.  Three berries could kill three men.

“I’m going to make this easy,” he said quietly.  “My son seeks to kill me, thinking he’ll inherit.”

Cree reached for a berry.

“Wait,” I said, the word ripping out of me despite my intention not to speak.  “Why?  If you wish to fight him, then why do this?”

“I don’t wish to fight him.”  He smiled, rolling the berry between his fingers.  “I wish to deny him what he tries to take by betrayal.”  Then he shrugged.  “And I refuse to let him use another in his endless vendetta against me. Do you know…it’s our belief that for every life you take, you must save two more if you want to leave this existence with your soul intact.”

I inclined my head.  “I have no soul left.  You do this for nothing if you try to spare me.”

“If you had no soul, it wouldn’t concern you to see this berry in my hand.”

He smiled at me as he tossed it up in the air.

I don’t know why I did it.

It should mean nothing to me.

I could easily claim his death as my own.  Poison wasn’t unknown to me.  I suspected I even knew who had provided him with those three priceless, deadly berries.

But my hand moved, almost as though it had a mind of its own and the sliver-thin dart stole the berry from the air and I quickly used two more darts to destroy the other two berries.  He could still lick the plate, I supposed, but somehow I didn’t see this regal, elegant man choosing that route.

“Why?” he asked, his voice puzzled.

Staring at the plate, at the thin stalks of the darts, I shook my head.  “I don’t know,” I murmured.  Then I looked at him.  “Do you count now?  As one half of a life?”

Captain…we have lift-off…NIGHT BLADE IS LIVE

And it’s fixed. And it’s everywhere…if you can’t access it via your devices, please go here and find the links for contacting customer service.

NBsq

 

By the time those gray clouds cleared, it was like the whole world was burning. Even though everything looked normal to my eyes, it didn’t feel that way. I could feel the heat slamming against my shields and I could feel the air as it was being squeezed out of my lungs and I was certain that if I didn’t move, didn’t get away, I was going to die.

Rolling onto my belly, determined to do just that—get away—I went to shove onto my hands and knees.

Somebody forced me back onto my face in the dirt.

“You move, you die.”

The voice. I knew that voice. Didn’t like the owner of it. Didn’t know why, but after a few seconds…

Oh. Yeah. Sleazy son-of-a-bitch witch.

Evil witches were bad.

This guy had wrong written all over him. Bad news.

In my pain-driven state, I think maybe I saw a little more clearly than I had earlier and that spell Colleen had cast on him now made more sense. I flexed my hand, ready to call my sword but his voice stopped me.

“Marlowe and your cat are at each other’s throats—son of a bitch is throwing magics out like he doesn’t care who lives or dies and I’m not strong enough to do anything more than buckle down and wait it out.” Xavier’s voice was a disgusted mutter just a few inches away from my ear. “If you leave the circle I’ve got down, you aren’t going to live and I am not responsible for your stupidity. You hear me?”

I tried to think past the roaring in my ears.

The air was thick with magic and it was the angry kind. Careless. Careless didn’t fit the image I had of Marlowe but if Marlowe thought he was about ready to go down in a blaze of glory? Behind my eyes, I thought I caught flickers of something virulent and red, ricocheting through the air.

All the oxygen seemed to disappear from the world and Xavier muttered, “Aw, fuck—”

I forced myself into a crouch. I could see past the circle Xavier had cast and just a few dozen yards away, there was a dead hawk lying there. “What happened to it?”

“Marlowe,” he said thinly. “He’s got an affinity for death magic. It’s forbidden but he doesn’t care.”

Beneath us, the ground shuddered and then he looked at me. “Your cat isn’t going to make it if this keeps up. I’m barely holding the shields and I’m not in the thick of it. If he—”

Despite the wild magic rippling all around us, a surreal quiet had fallen but the sound of a weapon firing through the night had suddenly shattered it. Yeah, no mistaking that sound.

Ammo.

My brain kicked into gear and I started processing. No. I didn’t like modern weapons, although some of the weapons manufactured back in the 1800 and 1900s weren’t bad. They usually needed work when I got a hold of them, like my Desert Eagle—they were in bad need of repair, some TLC and I usually had to have my ammo specially made.

Weapons, though, regardless of their craftsmanship, or lack of, were my stock and trade and I knew them.

The one being fired now wasn’t new—the typical gun of today was quieter and operated with either a laser or an electric discharge. Most. Not all.

There were still plenty that fired ammo like the old school weapons, but my ears told me this was an older one. The kind that would cut through a tank. The kind soldiers had carried when they walked through deserts back in the wars fought in the earlier part of the century, right before our presence had been brought into the open.

They were rare these days, but I knew what it was: an old-school assault rifle with armor piercing capabilities. Loaded with the right kind of ammo—magically charged ammo, a weapon like that could take down just about anything…an elephant, a tank, a homicidal vampire. Or an enraged witch with a knack for death spells.

Magic ripped through the air—fuck. That was the right kind of ammo. I gasped as I felt in it the pit of my gut. The screaming started almost instantly.

“Something charged in that weapon,” Xavier whispered. “Where in the hell did he get that idea?”

I swallowed, staring at the ground. The weapon fired again and each time, the power built in the air. Higher and higher.

“He’s going to bring down the fucking ward. Son of a bitch…” Xavier’s voice was full of shock, amazement and a little bit of horror.

I clamped my hands over my ears, because I knew what was coming. I could hear something shrieking—the wards, maybe. I could hear somebody screaming off in the distance, even though I knew the firefight was easily a mile away.

The magic built and built, and built—

When it broke, it was like a tsunami and I swayed under it. Blood trickled from my nose and I huddled there, convinced that somehow, the dying magic would get in and grab me.

 

Links!

iBookstore | Amazon | BN | Kobo | Smashwords | ARe

It’s also in print now at Amazon…will be live at other outlets, and orderable (is that a word?) through your local bookstores in a few more weeks.

Tomorrow…I’m doing a giveaway at my blog. With prizes.  Since my release day SUCKED big rotten hairy nasty things, I’m having a do-over. Because I can. It will be at http://shilohwalker.com/website. Hope to see you there.

Updates on Night Blade

Again, thanks for being so patient.  I can’t undo this or make up for this mess, but I’ve marked the book down $3.99 for the next month… hopefully it helps a little.

After people have had a chance to read Night Blade, I plan to post a nice long except of Broken Blade, but not yet.  It’s got too much that will be spoiler territory, so in a while, I’ll post it and I’ll post more than I normally would to thank you all for being so patient.

Here’s where we stand so far…

These are the messages I’ve been given and hopefully, everything is correct and all the timeframes will be met.

B&N update…file will be live tonight.

B&N is looking into an email to notify the readers who purchased it about the update, but I don’t know if this will happen.

The amazon listing keeps going up and down, but they do have the correct file.  I was told:

It was due to a database refresh, and they were expecting it to complete in 4 hours

That time is pretty much lapsed so hopefully everything will be finished on that end soon. I have no idea what that means, but I know it’s computer/tech related.

Other misc info:

Apple: file up yesterday, price up immediately

Overdrive: file up, price up
Sony: file up, price in process
Kobo: file up, price in process
Baker & Taylor: file being checked, price in process
Amazon: file and price both showing in the back end, still under pursuit

Price up just means they are in the process of getting the price adjusted.  It’s never as easy as pushing a button, right?

Those who already HAVE Night Blade… (or bought it and the file is wrong, actually) email customer service for your respective device/reading apps. ALL of them now have the correct files. Amazon & Kobo are been providing the right files. Kindle can push it to your device. Reader Emma said…>>> “Ok it didn’t work just removing and redownloading but when I contacted amazon via chat they pushed the correct version to me and all good.”

To contact Amazon… go here… (You’ll have to be signed in or this will lead you to a sign-in screen)

To contact BN… go here (offers live chat, email, etc)

Kobo… this page, down on the very bottom right, look for the contact customer care, will offer you three options, pick your poison. 🙂

For the various fixes on devices, see below…

Okay, so as of now, if you haven’t bought NIGHT BLADE, it’s available on Kindle and the file is fine.

ETA: okay, the file comes up and goes down.  I’m told this is related to database issues. Whatever that means… ??? It should be resolved soon.

The problem is those who’ve preordered… I had it preordered and it looks like the ‘updated’ file isn’t available yet. I’ve tried doing the archive thing, removing it from my device, etc, etc…and it’s not doing any good.

If you want to request a refund and buy again, that might be your best bet.

Amazon, Kobo, iBookstores, ARe & Smashwords all have the correct files and BN should have it up by tonight.

iBookstore | Amazon | BN | Kobo | Smashwords | ARe

 

I was told the process for getting the corrected file is as follows…but I’m still checking for the correct file myself.  If anybody has any luck, let me know.

From what I was told, if you have the book and read via one of the apps (iPad/iPhone)…

Nook: archive, go to archived items, and redownload
Kindle: Remove from device, then redownload
Kobo: archive the book, and then redownload
Apple: delete this copy, go to purchased books bookshelf, redownload

On various readers other than Nook, this should be the process…

all they have to do is delete the book and redownload when the update is live. They don’t need to ask for a refund, or do anything other than redownload the book.

With the Nook:

For B&N, you have to archive, then go into your archive, and redownload.

I’m staying in contact with the distributor and I’ve let them know how frustrating this has been for everybody.

I wish I could fix it but at this point, but even if I attempted to take over and upload the file myself, it would cause problems in the system–the platforms would detect two ‘identical’ files and they’d be flagged and it would slow things down even more as they clarified copyright, etc.

Thanks to all you who have been so patient.  I appreciate it.

There are two days left too enter the contest for Kit’s Very Bad Job.

 

Night Blade… the status… it’s at iBookstore

Well, that’s progress… I guess.  🙁

I’d hoped we’d have this resolved tonight, but no such luck.

I still haven’t heard anything new about other retailers, though… the distributor was contacting Amazon, BN, etc again… we haven’t heard back, so I can’t get you an update.

The new files HAVE been sent out, so it’s a matter of the retailers getting them into the system and out to you  all at this point.

Currently, you can get NIGHT BLADE from Smashwords, iBookstore & All Romance Ebooks.

iBookstore |  Smashwords | ARe

Also, the print file has been finalized.  You can buy it from createspace now and it will be at other channels once it gets through the system.  That’s such a vague term… the system.  In this day and age, it seems like we should be able to push a button and BAM!  It’s done.  But it’s not that easy.  That’s annoying.

Print

Thanks to everybody who has been so understanding. I do appreciate it.

Night Blade

PLEASE SEE NOTE AT BOTTON

I’ve been told this book requires chocolate and wine and kleenex. I should have included that as a warning.

I’m also told it’s worth it, though.  🙂  Does that help?

Night Blade

Silence swelled up, one of those deafening silences where you’re painfully aware of the ticking of the clock, of every breath you take, of the slightest, smallest sound.

“I’m told one of them got away. Which one?”

I closed my eyes, tried to think. “I don’t know…there was a third, weaker wolf in the background. Nobody I know. I think Bonner was the one Justin killed. Not sure of that guy’s name, but he was strong.”

Damon nodded. Then he sat up slowly, his eyes narrowing. “Justin. I know that name.”

Oh. Shit.

“He’s the Banner cop I’m working with.”

“No. That’s not why I know it, Kit.”

I stared at his back. The black ink from his tattoo spilled over the top edge of his left shoulder and I could see it shifting, rippling. Muscles flexed under the smooth surface of his skin and I could see the wild heat of his energy hovering above him. Mad. He was mad. Oh, yes.

“Who is Justin, Kit?”

I leaned back against the headboard and drew my knees to my chest. “I used to see him for a while.”

The muscles in his back knotted tighter. “Find another Banner cop to work with.”

“Not an option, Damon.” I blew out a careful breath and swallowed past the knot that had decided to lodge itself in my throat. “This isn’t a thing for you to worry about—”

He went from sitting on the edge of the bed to crouched over my knees so fast, I never even saw it coming. I was good. I was fast. I thought I knew how fast he was…and I was wrong.

“Don’t tell me what’s a thing for me to worry about,” he whispered, his voice just barely human now. “I told you that I’d try harder, but I never said I’d hold it together while you worked with some guy you used to fuck.”

“Stop it,” I warned him softly even as a forgotten fear tried to wing itself to life inside. I wasn’t going to be afraid and I wasn’t going to do this. Lifting a hand, I touched his cheek. He tensed like he might move away and if he had, I might have shattered. He didn’t though and I managed to keep that part of me from dying. “If I had a choice in this, I wouldn’t work with him. I don’t want this job and if I had my way, I’d bury my blade so far up his ass, I’d see the end of it out his throat.”

“Then do it,” he snarled. “I’ll help you bury the body.”

“I can’t.” If I do, they’re going to kill you…

iBookstore | Amazon | BN | Kobo | Smashwords | ARe

HEADS UP… there is a problem with the files uploaded to Amazon, Ibookstore and BN (probably Kobo as well).  The files at Smashwords and ARe are correct-I handled those myself over the weekend. 

I am very sorry about this… as soon as I know it’s fixed, I’ll let you know.

Problem with Night Blade/UK Version

Okay, first… this problem will be fixed… I am really sorry, I do not know how it happened, but I promise, it will be fixed… it should only take a couple of days.

Somehow the file for my book STOLEN got uploaded to some sites instead of NIGHT BLADE.  I don’t handle the distribution for my books anymore…the service I use gets the books to a wider market and takes a great deal of work off my hands, and hopefully they’ll be able to get this fixed ASAP.  I’ve already contacted them to see what’s going on, but…eh, it’s Sunday.  Once I hear back, I’ll let you know when we can expect to get it fixed.

I know for sure it’s the wrong file on Amazon.co.uk.  I’m not sure where else it’s an problem.  If you haven’t already pre-ordered/downloaded it, you might want to check the sample.

There should be a sample either on the first or second page that is Kit…she’s having an argument with a guy called Justin.  If you see characters Elliott & Shay?  Not the right book.

If you have pre-ordered NIGHT BLADE, once the file gets fixed, you should be able to download the correct file with no trouble.

Again, I am so sorry.

I’d like to say I’m going to go hide in the corner, but…well.  This is the second time this has happened to me and I figure the only way to handle it is to either just…laugh… uncontrollable, and hysterically… or maybe have a glass of wine.