Thursday, September 26, 2013


Do you remember when you were growing up, the old man who always yelled at everybody to stay off his lawn? He appeared for maybe thirty seconds, threatened to call the police, and disappeared again.

Welcome him to my blog, please! The old cranky man as you've never seen him before!

*Wild applause*

Chinish peered through the crack in the curtains, waiting. The animals were playing in the street, kicking their ridiculous toys around. A little further. Just a little further. One darted after the ball, trying to catch it before it flipped past the end of the wall and into his yard.

The ball rebounded from the curb and skittered along the low wall to where his property dipped down below street level.

He sucked in a breath in anticipation of the feast.

The ball bounded through the gap. The animal hesitated, looking back at its companions, then gingerly made its way down into the yard. Chinish struck as soon as the child was within range, an arrow into the soul that sucked, sucked, sucked, pulling all that energetic power. This one had more power than most, and a new thought occurred to Chinish. His eyes widened.

The child started, turned toward the house instinctively for a moment, its eyes frozen wide. When no one appeared in the doorway it worked its way through weeds to where the ball had come to rest and Chinish threw the door open. "Get out of my yard, you filthy animal!" The child was close now, close enough to see the patterns in the wide eyes. So close that the flow between them was visible.

The child's fear was sweet, increasing the flow of power. Chinish sucked it all down, careful not to reach too far or take too much. Oh, sweet. Like a draught of cold spring water after a long walk in the desert. It filled him, chilling him from the inside out until he thought he might shatter.

The child stood, terrified, then grabbed its ball and scurried through the weeds to the street.

Chinish kept the contact, let the power soak into him. He felt the child's exhaustion, heard through the link the complaint of a headache. I'm going home.

Chinish smiled and kept the contact. Tonight, after all memory of the incident had passed, the child would die peacefully in his sleep. Chinish had never emptied one completely before, fearing repercussions from those who might be able to sense his interference on this plane. But maybe, just perhaps the surge of power as the soul left the body would be enough to open the portal again, to send him home.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


If you haven't heard of Awakening, by Christy Dorrity, hop over to the Facebook event for prizes, giveaways and games. From now until whenever! "Because some Celtic stories won’t be contained in myth . . ."

I am really looking forward to reading this book, and can I just say I love the cover? Christy's a genius.

A little magic has always run in sixteen-year-old McKayla McCleery's family—at least that’s what she’s been told. McKayla’s eccentric Aunt Avril travels the world as a psychic for the FBI, and her mother can make amazing delicacies out of the most basic of ingredients. But McKayla doesn't think for a second that the magic is real—it’s just good storytelling. Besides, McKayla doesn’t need magic. She just moved to beautiful Star Valley, Wyoming, and already she has a best friend, a solo in her upcoming ballet recital, and the gorgeous guy in her physics class keeps looking her way.

When an unexpected fascination with Irish dance leads McKayla to seek instruction from the mute, crippled, janitor at her high school, she learns that her family is not the only one with unexplained abilities.

After Aunt Avril comes to Star Valley in pursuit of a supernatural killer, people begin disappearing, and the lives of those McKayla holds most dear are threatened. When the janitor reveals that an ancient curse, known as a geis, has awakened powers that defy explanation, McKayla is forced to come to terms with what is real and what is fantasy.

If you're here FROM the launch party, the tabs above lead to information about my primary world--the Demons Bay world, or the HalfWorld universe. Take your pick. In Other Worlds has links to sample pages for my completed (but unpublished) books, and Eclectic is my writers blog. I write mostly science fiction and fantasy, often a mix of the two.

Look around! If you read something you particularly like, let me know. I'm trying to decide what to put out next. :)

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Wyre-Rat temporarily discontinued

I've been focusing so much on other things that I've just let the Wyre-Rat cycle continue. I'm going to pull back on that for a few weeks, since I haven't gotten any interest. Let me know if you'd prefer that I continue, as I have other things I'd like to do with this blog. I'm bored with rats at the moment.


Wyre-rat (part 24)

"Swim north along the shore until an alarm on your tank goes off, then look for a tiny shack built just above the waterline. When you're even with it, turn out to sea and they'll find you."

He stared. "I can't leave you alone. They'll come, they'll take you to the Center."

I shook my head at him. "Better me than you, and my people need to know what the Center is. If they can, they'll get me out." I stared into the dark, wondering if they would even try. If they couldn't, I still wouldn't give away any information.

I quickly packed up the bag. "Is he one of your supervisors?" I barely glanced at the corpse. I was surprised that he hadn't even thought about killing the man.

Now he showed no concern about the body beyond stepping around the blood. He lifted the corpse by the hair, then dropped it. "No. I don't recognize him." He quickly stripped out of his clothes, and I packed them in the bag as well, carefully not looking at him until he'd dwindled down to cat size.

He seemed amused by that, and jumped up on the bed to rub against me.

I pushed him away. "Get out of here. I need to get away before they activate that tracker." He squirmed out the narrow window and I watched him go, wondering if I was judging him correctly.

He could just as easily go back to the Center, but at the moment he seemed to be reveling in his new "freedom." An illusory and dangerous freedom, but he couldn't know that yet. If he followed my instructions, at least he'd be out of it.

When I could no longer see him I finished packing my bag and went looking for my hostess.

She looked up from the fireplace, surprised to see me in her private areas, and then her eyes darted down. I followed her gaze, saw the blood streaking my new leather boots.

"An uninvited visitor," I explained, keeping my voice hard. "I hope you didn't invite him in."

Her eyes moved to the bag over my shoulder. "You're leaving."

"I'm not staying where I've been attacked," I snapped. "And there's a body on your floor."

She nodded sharply. "I'll take care of it." She didn't move. I stalked past her and out the door.

The day was young enough that most people were still at home. I hurried away, through the narrow streets and up toward the Center. As I passed the hotel where I'd stayed I slipped inside to leave my bag at the back of one of the first floor closets.

If you want to start at the beginning: Wyre-Rat episode 1

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Wyre-rat (part 23)

He didn't hold a gun, or a knife, but he crept toward the bed on soundless feet. I tensed to move.

The stranger lunged forward. I tried to move away, but was tangled in the blankets. I felt the pop of a pressure syringe against my upper shoulder and responded, throwing him off. He stumbled backward and I set myself, but the cat erupted from the bathroom and seemingly by accident found a hold that the stranger could not shake off. A few seconds later the man crumpled and lay shaking on the floor.

I swallowed, eyes wide as a pool of dark spread across the dirt floor. "You killed him." I looked from the narrow piece of broken plastic in the cat's hand to the corpse.

"Wasn't I supposed to?" He sounded both puzzled and frightened. Underneath, I heard exhilaration. "He would have killed you."

I touched my shoulder. I wasn't feeling lethargic or drugged in any way, and the painful pressure indicated that something had been injected into the muscle. I could guess what it was. "You're going to have to do this alone, now."

He blinked, suddenly frightened. His eyes went to my shoulder. "A tracker," he breathed. "They found us because of my tracker."

"No. The water I gave you last night would have neutralized any tracking devices. Unfortunately that was the only bottle I had." I rubbed at my face. "So it'll be up to you." I hated to leave him on his own, but this situation had just become more complicated.

"What will be up to me?"

"You need to get out, and let my people know what happened. If you stay in animal shape until you get across the border you should be fine." I didn't have much choice. At least the route I had planned wouldn't risk anyone.

"Do you know how to swim?"

His eyes widened in alarm. "Swim? I'm a cat."

"Good. Are you afraid of water?"

He hissed, perhaps in contempt at the idea.

"Good. Right now, before dawn, go down to the bay. The northern section, the trees come right down to the water. Go in cat form. Somewhere along the shore, under a large tree there's a small cave that you can get into as a cat but that no human could find. Inside you'll find a diver's mask and a tank."

He blinked in surprise.

If you want to start at the beginning: Wyre-Rat episode 1