Another month, that is. Four more months until the end of 2020! And it can’t happen fast enough, because I’m convinced this year is cursed.
I lost my mom, COVID hit, self-isolation began, killer hornets invaded, protests in the midst of isolation began, school began online, twin hurricanes threatened the coast… What’s next?!
Oh yeah, an election looms. So, the worst is yet to come, I’m sure. Be looking for more apocalyptic signs—the Kardashians will give away half their fortunes to fund food banks, locusts will swarm the midwest before harvests, a killer arctic storm will push south to freeze-dry everything in its path, and we’ll be streaming across the Rio Grande to safety… Oh yeah, that movie’s already been made.
Just streaming thoughts, y’all. September will see the start of Fall. I’m ready for it. I love sweaters and fuzzy socks. I’ll miss the pool, but I’m happy the year’s almost over because it’s been hellacious, right?
August is done. The one bright spot for me was the release of Cage, the first of my Montana Bounty Hunters: Dead Horse, MT series.
I finished off multiple editing jobs, as well. Created a bunch of little paintings. One little crochet project.
But what’s ahead for September?
I’m hoping to finish Lawless and the last of the With His SEAL Team stories.
I hope to have Lawless complete by the end of the month, although I gave myself some wiggle room when I set up the pre-order. The SEAL team shorty should be out mid-month, so be watching for it!
I’m planning on taking several online art classes this month, so I’ll be posting pics on FB and Instagram—it keeps me motivated to produce. I’m also going to be making headband/ear warmers for the girls so they’ll be ready for cold weather. So, plenty to keep me busy while I’m writing, helping kids with online assignments, etc. It will be a busy fall. 🙂
And that’s it for my update. Hope I didn’t bore you too much with my August recap and look into September! I’d love to hear what apocalyptic signs you would add to my list as well as hear about any goals you’ve set for yourselves!
What a week, right? At this time last week, our biggest worry was how the kids’ schooling would go when they began their online classes. As it turns out, it went very, very well.
The kids do have schedules and requirements to be online. The little one’s teacher warned students they’d be meeting at the beginning of each day online, and she didn’t want to see any pajamas or shirtless bodies, which the 7-year-old decided meant dressing up in new “school clothes” every day. She loves getting up, eating her breakfast, dressing for school, then smiling as she watches the other kids come on line. The other kids dress but are more casual about it. They all have daily lessons they have to complete, but the nice thing is—if they apply themselves—they can finish their requirements by the afternoon. There’s no recess, no movement between classes. No wasted time. My dd stays busy going from the little one’s and the middle kid’s bedrooms to help them negotiate the online programs and work through their homework, but she’s on top of it. We can do this.
So, what else happened this week? We prepared for Hurricane Laura because, as far inland as we are, we’ve never been under a hurricane or tropical storm warning before. As it turned out, we were lucky, because the storm hooked to the east, and while we sustained some hammering rain and winds, we didn’t lose a roof. Sure, we have tons of cleanup in the yard, but we stayed safe and even kept our power throughout the storm.
As for me, I was a bit scatterbrained last week. I found it hard to concentrate on work because of all the changes and commotion. I have my work cut out for me this week, but I’m ready for it. I’m working on my September plan today, and I’m hoping to keep it relaxed as opposed to slammin’. We’ll see. I have to start strong.
Plus, I’m looking at what I want to accomplish this Fall so far as arts and crafts are concerned. One thing I did accomplish while the storm was hammering the house was this…
I’m not much of a crocheter because I prefer simple and fast. This was both. Now, my dd has orders in for more for her and her girls. So, that’s one more thing to add to my Fall projects list! 🙂
Tell me about any of your Fall projects or plans for a chance to win a $5 Amazon gift card!
UPDATE: The winners are…Colleen, Debra and Katherine!
Before I wrote bounty hunters, I wrote about vampires…
Answer me this for a chance to win your choice from among my many Night Fall titles!
Bounty Hunters or Vamps and Werewolves?
Just this once…
On the trail of a serial killer, vampire Quentin Albermarle is mistaken for the killer by a police special task force. Once the smoke clears, Quentin finds himself in a delicious position—atop one of the unit’s crack officers, Darcy Henry. In need of Quentin’s access to the vampire sub-culture, the task force leadership invites Quentin to join the crime unit as a special advisor, much to the chagrin of the men in the unit, and especially, of Darcy.
Caught between opposing forces, vampire and hunter…
A no-nonsense cop with no time for romance, Darcy suddenly finds herself embroiled in a steamy love triangle between her mortal partner, Joe, and the handsome vampire. Going from abstinence to wantonness, she is unable to resist the two men’s relentless seduction or her own sensual curiosity about a vampire’s special “kiss”.
A hunger like no other…
When the real killer threatens the life of someone close to her, Darcy makes a choice that forever binds the three of them together.
Joe’s voice jerked Darcy Henry to wakefulness. Berating herself for dozing off during a stakeout, she fumbled for the switch on her night vision goggles. Instantly, the landscape before her was awash in shades of luminescent green. She scanned the water’s edge. The crests of the ebbing tides rolled onto the beach, unbroken by any sign of “Bat-boy.” Had she already missed her opportunity?
“Where do you see him?” she whispered into her headset, glad the roar of the incoming surf masked their voices.
“Ten o’clock. Get cocked.”
She reached for her crossbow, drew back the linen cord with both hands, and latched it in the spring clip. Then she slid a steel-tipped arrow onto the track. Sighting down the shaft, she braced the bow in her left palm and dug her elbow into the sand. With the stock snug against her shoulder, she slid her right forefinger around the trigger and turned her sights back to the water’s edge—just in time to see a tall figure stride out of the surf.
He fit the description she’d purchased from the barman at the “blood bank” of the new vamp in town. Only, the barman hadn’t filled in all the details. Darcy stiffened against her body’s sudden surge of attraction and firmly reminded herself the vamp’s body was like any other man’s. Yeah, right.
Her gaze flickered over him, inventorying his characteristics—for myAfter Action Report, of course. Broad-shouldered, leanly muscled, just over six feet tall. Blond, she could tell, despite the fact his hair was plastered to his head. Handsome, too, with broad, prominent cheekbones, a longish straight nose, and lips that appeared permanently curved in a smirk.
Unable to resist the temptation, she adjusted the lenses of her goggles to zoom, and her gaze slipped lower. His package was as fine arriving as his ass had been going into the water. His long, uncircumcised cock dangled between his legs. Something else not mentioned in the barman’s description—and definitely not something that would make it into her AAR.
“Hold up!” Impatience clipped Joe’s words. “A civilian’s in your line of sight.”
Darcy lowered the bow, cursing under her breath. “Where? And how the hell did we miss that?” she whispered angrily.
“She had to have been here when we arrived,” Joe replied. “If I hadn’t seen her hand rise above the dune…”
Nothing was ever as simple as it seemed. A vampire spotted on Vero Beach just happened to meet the description of a suspected killer they’d circulated that day.
This night’s stakeout might be a bust, after all. They’d have to track him to his lair and try to take him out while he slept. Dusting a sleeping vampire never sat well with Darcy. Too unsportsmanlike. Asleep, even a probable serial killer like this one who wore an innocent face.
She burrowed deeper into the wet sand at the bottom of her shallow foxhole, prepared to wait it out. This time she wouldn’t doze, no matter how balmy the November night grew. Too many late nights and too little sleep were taking their toll on the whole team. Instead, she concentrated on how uncomfortable she was with damp sand working its way into her clothing and the smell of rotting seaweed all around her.
Having a target to observe helped. Hopefully, the vamp wouldn’t make a meal of his host and force Darcy to intervene. Hand-to-hand with a vamp was a last resort. Humans almost always lost to their superior strength, no matter how many degrees of black belt one had earned.
Joe let out a low whistle. “Damn! How’d a ghoul like that get such a fine piece of ass?”
A woman sat up near the top of a dune, her arms outstretched, revealing a slender back, rounded hips and a cascade of long, dark hair.
The vamp went down on his knees and leaned over her.
Darcy tensed, ready to spring to the woman’s rescue at the first sign of fangs.
Instead, the woman’s back arched to offer her breasts to her lover. His mouth closed over a beaded tip, and the woman’s loud groan of approval was discernible over the rumble of the incoming tide.
Joe’s soft laughter sounded in Darcy’s ear. “Better take notes, Darse. See what you’re missing?”
Darcy knew better than to answer her partner. Any response would only add fodder to the ribbing she’d receive at the Special Unit’s morning briefing. Her lack of social life was already a favorite topic. As it was, she was glad the guys weren’t wired in to her goggles.
Joe’s fed the monitor in the van parked farther down the beach.
Maybe she’d get even luckier and the vamp would move his tryst indoors.
Instead, he released the woman’s breast. With his hands braced on either side of her, the tops of his shoulders rippling as he “walked” down her body, he circled his head as he kissed a path across her belly. Then he moved lower.
Darcy squirmed. When was the last time a man had buried his face in her pussy? God, had it really been three years since Manny transferred to Miami-Dade?
The woman’s hips lifted, and her hands dug into the sand. His face reached the juncture of her thighs, and she shouted and thrashed her head from side to side.
Darcy wished she could roll to her back and give the couple their moments of privacy—and herself a reprieve from an unwanted rush of desire. Tight as a spring, the yearning wound inside her belly. She was helpless to stop the flush of heat that swept from her face to her breasts, and thankful for the darkness so no one on her team would see her blushing.
When she saw the suspected vampire rise to kneel between the woman’s legs, Darcy’s heart thudded dully in her chest and increased in tempo. His cock fell onto the woman’s belly, engorged and enormous, just before he hooked his arms beneath her knees and lifted her buttocks off the sand.
The woman reached for his cock and guided it to her pussy.
Then his hips slammed forward, hard.
The woman arched into the sand and shouted again.
No man had ever made Darcy shout, a thought that niggled her feminine pride while it aroused her curiosity—although, with his super-sized hardware, the shout might not have been one of ecstasy. The thought cheered her for the moment, until she noted the woman slamming her hips upward to meet the vamp’s thrusts.
From Darcy’s angle, she had a perfect view of the long, gliding action of his hips as he pumped into the woman’s body. Darcy’s legs widened, and she dug her knees into the sand, shifting her hips to relieve the itch between her legs.
“I’ll bet you twenty she comes before he does,” Max’s voice broke in.
“You’re on,” said Joe. “What man wouldn’t come all over a woman like that?”
“Ahem. Just a little reminder, guys,” Darcy said, hoping to cut off this particular line of conversation. “Captain will be reviewing this feed, too. Joe, you better not have on your zoom.”
Soft chuckles sounded from the guys, but they soon quieted and hunkered down to wait—and watch.
Darcy’s attention returned to the couple farther down the beach.
The woman’s legs straightened, her toes pointing toward the moon, and her long moans indicated she was fast approaching the big O. The vampire ground his hips into hers, and the woman screeched.
“You owe me twenty,” Max said.
“Damn,” Phil whispered. “Wonder if the wifey will be up for a little tickle in the morning.”
“I’m telling Bets you called her that.” Darcy’s mouth was so dry the words almost cracked.
The woman’s legs jerked up and down.
The vamp flung back his head and thrust faster. Suddenly, he stopped, his nose lifting into the breeze.
Realizing the wind had shifted, Darcy hugged the sand and held her breath.
The vamp turned his head and stared straight at her.
Darcy froze, hoping he hadn’t really seen her. But a grin stretched across his face.
“Fuck, Darcy!” Joe shouted into her headset. “You’re made. Get out.”
Darcy couldn’t risk a shot with the woman downrange. She ditched her crossbow, ripped off her goggles, and sprang from the foxhole. Running straight for the road a hundred yards in front of her, Darcy felt the world slow. Her feet mired in the sand. Her heart drummed loudly in her ears.
Then she heard bare feet pounding in the sand and knew he was gaining.
“I’ll try to get off a shot,” Joe said, his breaths coming short and fast, “but he’s moving in on you. Pick up your feet. You’re running like a damn girl.”
Anger and a spurt of adrenaline increased her pace. She leapt over a hummock of tall sawgrass and hoped it scraped his balls. The road was fifty yards away. The headlights of the approaching van swept the beach in front of her.
“He’s too close. I can’t get off a shot,” Joe said. “Hold him off. I’m coming.”
Twenty-five yards and uphill now, she strained, her boots sinking ankle-deep as she climbed a dune. She reached the top, and then her feet left the ground as a heavy weight knocked her through the air.
They rolled to the bottom of the dune in a jumble of twisting limbs. When they stopped, his long, hard body stretched over hers, anchoring her to the ground.
Darcy opened her eyes, expecting a vampire’s mask and a row of jagged teeth. Instead, the vamp’s handsome face hovered only inches from her own. She drew a deep, shuddering breath.
“Well, well, well,” he said, his voice a low, rumbling purr. “A she-cop. A dangerous species, indeed.”
“You’re English,” she blurted. Something else not in the report. Was he even a vampire? Despite the layer of clothing separating their skins, Darcy burned from his heat. She struggled against his restraint.
He stretched and hooked his ankles around hers, and his hands held hers easily to the ground above her head.
Finally defeated, she let her head fall back in the sand. “So, how’d you know I was there?” she asked, already knowing the truth, but needing to distract him. His teeth were too close for comfort.
His face lowered, and he sniffed along her neck and the collar of her shirt. “My dear, I could smell your arousal. Delicious.”
Well, Hurricane Laura hooked to the east once it entered Arkansas, so my little town was spared the tornadoes, the 90-mile-an-hour gusts, and the heaviest rain. Whew! We do have a huge yard/pasture cleanup adventure ahead of us because of all the fallen branches, but no huge limbs landed on the house so we’re breathing a sigh of relief. We were even spared power outages. The town next to us had hours of outage, but not us!
While we waited, I kept my computer powered down and unplugged because I didn’t want to risk any damage, so that left me with art projects to keep my time filled with something kind of mindless.
The night before, my sister, Elle James, visited. We caught up on family gossip and she delivered bags of clothes she was shedding from her closet to my girls. There’s nothing quite like her hand-me-downs—some of which look as though they were never worn. It’s always like Christmas. She had a small jewelry bag amid her bounty. I grabbed it up because I liked the pattern and thought it might inspire an art project—and it did.
This was one of the pieces I worked on while the storm raged outside…
So, now that everything’s kind of back to normal, I’ll reset my brain to think about “words” instead of “pictures”. It’s actually rather hard for me to bounce back and forth because painting is such a happy place for me to be these days.
As for anyone who’s made it this far into this post ( 🙂 ), here’s a list of open contests. Be sure to enter today! Some are going away… Tomorrow, I’ll be back with something fresh and fun! ~DD
I live in central Arkansas, so it’s a rare thing for us to worry overmuch about hurricanes and tropical storms, other than the heavy rains and spin-up tornadoes they cast off. This time, it looks like Hurricane Laura will move through our area later today. I’m up early, watching the news already. We’ve been moving anything that’s not nailed down out of the yard. We’ve moved cars out from beneath trees. We’re keeping our phones charged up and getting the generator moved because it looks likely that we’ll have power outages.
Laura’s already made landfall in Louisiana and Texas. Here’s me hoping that everyone in Laura’s path stays safe!
First responders aren’t isolated when it comes to the heart of their jobs. They interact with citizens and other first responders to provide services and aid.
Authors can sometimes seem/feel alone. Writing is somewhat of a singular enterprise. When you’re sitting at the computer, tap-tap-tapping away, it’s just you and those keys.
Part of the reason I enjoyed my local NANOWRIMO group was because it was the chance to share some of my lonely challenges and successes.
Now, with such a thriving online romance community, I have the opportunity to work with others from time to time.
Like today! I sent up a Hail Mary message to Delilah Devlin. I was stuck like an ill-fitting cork in a bottle. For a few precious minutes, we went back and forth with ideas and POP! Yes! Woohoo! Happy Dance! There it was…the answer!
So…I’d like to give away an ebook copy of my next release. To enter, tell me about a time that you had the help of a friend!