VENGEANCE BORNE Blog Tour!
(Sentry of Evil #1)
Release: September 3, 2013
Thanks so much to Christen for having me as a guest today! One of my favorite parts of writing Vengeance Borne was exploring new supernatural creatures to write. I was able to incorporate creatures from different mythologies and put my own spin on their existence. The Dryad is one of my favorite characters in the Sentry world, and I’m glad she’ll be sticking around for future books. So I thought I’d share the scene from Vengeance Borne where she first makes her appearance. Hope you enjoy!
Excerpt from VENGEANCE BORNE
Micah pointed toward an embankment that dropped off into a tree-lined meadow. The sensation of joy intensified and he increased his speed, almost running toward the clearing. He’d never felt anything so pure. He took in their surroundings, the moon shining down on them like a giant spotlight. Trees, both pine and aspen lined the meadow, the wind rustling the leaves like bits of tissue paper. The scent of cool water wafted to his nostrils, further helping to clear his damned drug addled brain. There must have been a spring or a creek further down the tree line. Large and small shadows quivered in the moonlight, like frightened creatures. Though what anything should fear in the presence of such warm emotion was beyond his comprehension.
“Hey!” Jacquelyn hissed. “You never go running out into the open like that! We have no idea what’s out here.”
“It’s not bad,” Micah said with wonder, his narrow gaze scanning the trees. “There’s not a trace of evil in what I’m feeling right now.” He looked to the sky, laughter bubbling up through his throat. The sound echoed around them. “It’s amazing!”
A rustling in the brush to their left drew their attention, and Jacquelyn pulled the .357, sighting it toward the commotion. “Don’t move, Micah.”
He heard her, knew the warning inherent in her tone. But he could do nothing to stop his feet from moving. One step and then another, faster he walked toward the trees, blocking the path of Jacquelyn’s shot. He felt compelled to do so, to protect whatever creature lingered under cover, filling his soul with riotous joy. A smile tugged at his mouth as he suppressed another bout of laughter and he peered into the darkness.
“Shit.” Jacquelyn called from behind him. “Micah, move out of the fucking way!”
But he couldn’t. He clutched his chest, wishing he could spread the warm sensation to every tiny part of his body, rub it in. Roll in it. This was bliss.
“Micah.” Jacquelyn came up behind him, her breath labored. “What do you think—”
“Merry meet, hunter,” a lilting voice called out from the woods.
“Show yourself,” Jacquelyn said in response.
Micah stared into the trees, his jaw slack as a soft white orb meandered through the branches casting a silvery glow. His mother had told him stories of willo’ the wisps, shimmering balls of light, the embodiment of wandering spirits. The orb floated to the clearing and hovered just a few feet from Micah before exploding in a bright flash. He shielded his eyes and waited for the burst to subside, when it did he found himself face to face with a woman in a flowing white robe.
“I’d like to say, when it rains it pours, but this is a fucking deluge,” Jacquelyn griped.
Micah turned to Jacquelyn, his eyes slow to move from the mysterious woman. “What do you mean?”
“I mean, is there some sort of supernatural convention in town that I don’t know about? The entire county is crawling with supernatural squatters.”
But the woman before him swathed in white couldn’t possibly be one of them. Not when she made him feel so—good. “No, she’s something else.”
“Hardly,” Jacquelyn scoffed. “Our girl here is a Dryad. And you’d best watch your ass, Micah.”
Dryad? He wracked his brain, searching for a myth to go with the name. Micah turned back to the woman, and she pulled the cowl from her head. White hair in long flowing waves drifted on the breeze. Her pale skin reminded him of the smooth bark of a birch tree. And her eyes, electric blue and icy crinkled at the corners when she smiled at him.
“Shall I sing you a song, Bearer?” she asked in a voice as smooth as churned butter.
“Not if you want to keep your vocal chords,” Jacquelyn snapped.
“You’re no fun.” The Dryad stuck her tongue out like an errant child.
“A Dryad is a tree spirit, Micah.” Jacquelyn came to stand beside him. She held the .357 with intent, aiming it at the woman’s head. “She’ll use her pretty voice to tempt the soul right out of you if you let her.”
“Calm yourself, hunter.” The Dryad inched closer to Micah but he didn’t bother to move. The sense of euphoria intensified, stealing his breath and making him a bit dizzy. “I have no intention of taking your pet tonight. Though I must admit,” she ran a long white finger down the center of Micah’s chest, “that he is a tasty-looking morsel. Yum.”
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