A Free Dreamer Review: SYN Consulting (Dragon War Chronicles #1) by A.G. Carothers

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Continue to hide or help save the very kin she’s hidden from?

Welcome to SYN Consulting, the top business strategy consulting firm in Europe, home to a motley crew whose leader has a life changing secret. CEO, Danica Lestrange, is the first female dragon born in the last 800 years. Hidden from the rest of her kin and raised in the human world, she built a life that she would defend until her death.

A devious plan is unearthed while working on a new business deal that could plunge the dragons into another war with the humans. The humans may have forgotten the last dragon-human war, but the dragons have not. Will the war reveal this hidden world to the humans, or will the clans come together to defeat their enemies and maintain their anonymity?

Danica must gather her allies and help the very dragons she’s hidden from her whole life. She can only hope that she’ll be strong enough to protect her chosen family.

This is the first book in a new series about dragons who want nothing more than to live in peace, but refuse to be subjugated. In war there’s also love, and love is blind. Love doesn’t care about gender, race, species (in this case), or sexuality.

Warning: This book contains explicit sexual content between consenting adults. The sexual scenes are MM, MF, and MMF. There are romantic relationships depicted that are MM. There is also a high level of explicit language, snark, kink, and possibly bad puns and fart jokes.

First of all, I can’t believe “SYN Consulting” ended where and how it did. That’s one hell of a mean cliffhanger!! If that’s something you don’t like, you might want to wait for part 2 of the series, which is supposed to come out in November.

Now, the relationships in this book are seriously complicated and everybody seems to be involved with everybody on some level. So I’ll just limit myself to the sex scenes we get in this book. For the first half or so, there are lots and lots of explicit MF sex scenes, mostly told from Danica’s POV. Then we get one explicit MFM and one explicit MM scene, although it’s implied that this happens all the time.

It’s been many years since I read explicit MF sex scenes and I don’t remember them being this hot. Seriously, there’s a lot of sex in this book and it’s all always hot to read. It does give it a bit of a porny feel, especially for the first half.

The world of “SYN Consulting” is fascinating. This isn’t exactly the first dragon-shifter book I’ve come across, but it is the first one to make the dragons aliens and not supernatural creatures. I thought that was a really interesting idea, even if the dragons have lived on earth for many millennia. The world building was surprisingly well done, considering the plentiful sex in the first half. There’s some intriguing groundwork that will hopefully be expanded in future books.

I often have issues with female protagonists, especially if they’re romantically involved with men. But I really liked Danica. She’s damn bad-ass. Kudos for giving her her own Ducati. I like a girl who rides her own bike! She’s strong and independent, but also snarky and quite funny. And very intelligent. Oh, and she has awesome, meaningful tattoos! A strong female lead in the truest sense of the word.

The guys in the book were great too. The second half felt a little cluttered with the many POVs we get, though. I sometimes had trouble keeping Matt and Xander apart.

Long story short, “SYN Consulting” is a great Science Fantasy book, set in the near future. It felt longer than it’s 260 pages, but in a good way. I really can’t wait for the next part after that cliffhanger. A little less porn and a little more plot in the first half would have been nice, though.

The cover is gorgeous. Those eyes are mesmerizing!

Sales Links:

AMAZON US: https://amzn.to/2xXrAoK

AMAZON UK: https://amzn.to/2IoModj

AMAZON CA: https://amzn.to/2DN97l0

 

Book details: Kindle Edition, First Edition, 260 pages

Published August 17th 2018 by A.G. Carothers

New Book Release Blitz for BURN (Witchbane #1.5) by Morgan Brice (excerpt and giveaway)

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RELEASE BLITZ

Book Title: Burn (Witchbane #1.5)

Author: Morgan Brice

Cover Artist: Lou Harper

Release Date: September 30, 2018

Genre/s: Urban Fantasy, MM paranormal romance

Sexy, satisfying supernatural suspense.

Blurb

One hundred years ago, a sheriff’s posse killed dark warlock Rhyfel Gremory, but his witch-disciples escaped, and their magic made them nearly immortal. To keep their power, each year one of the witch-disciples kills a descendant of one of the men in the posse, a twelve-year cycle that has cost dozens of lives, including that of Seth Tanner’s brother, Jesse.

Seth uncovers the cycle of ritual murders that feed the witch-disciples’ power, and he saves Evan Malone, one of the warlock’s potential victims. Neither Seth nor Evan expected to fall in love, but when the dust settles, they find themselves on the run and on the road together, heading toward Pittsburgh, on the trail of the next killer.

Seth wonders whether Evan will come to regret his choice to stay together, now that he’s living the reality of Seth’s nomadic life and the risks that come with it. He wants Evan to stay, but he’s afraid that Evan would be better off without him, living a normal life. Evan’s whole world has been upended, but there’s one thing he’s sure of, his love for Seth. Evan worries that he’s a liability, not yet able to hold his own in Seth’s rough-and-tumble world, but determined to do whatever necessary to have Seth’s back. On the way to face the next warlock, supernatural threats abound, forcing them to learn to fight as a team.

Fate and danger threw them together. But once the adrenaline fades, will love last?

Excerpt

Chapter One

Evan

“What do you mean, you’ve got a surprise for me?” Evan Malone’s tone was wary. “The last big surprise involved armed men shooting up my apartment before they burned it down.”

His boyfriend, Seth Tanner, winced a bit at that, and Evan wished he could take back the words. “I didn’t mean—”

Seth managed a smile. “It’s okay. And…it’s true. But this is a good surprise. Even if it’s kind of connected to that other time.”

Now Evan was really confused, but he let Seth lead him from the bedroom of the fifth-wheeler RV they shared out to the living room. With an electric fireplace, flat screen TV, and cushy leather furniture, it was easy to forget that their home was on wheels. On the table in the dining area was a large box and two smaller ones.

“It’s not Christmas—or my birthday,” Evan said, glancing at Seth again, who shooed him on with an expression Evan didn’t quite understand, something between pleased and sad.

“Open them.”

Evan saw that the boxes weren’t taped shut, so he went for the big one first, indulging his inner ten-year-old. The new laptop inside made him catch his breath. “Seth—”

“You still have two more.”

Biting back a comment, Evan opened the next biggest box to find a good quality, SLR digital camera, definitely capable of taking professional photographs. Knowing Seth would object if he didn’t finish his task, he opened the smallest box to find a cell phone.

About the Author

Morgan Brice is the romance pen name of bestselling author Gail Z. Martin. Morgan writes urban fantasy male/male paranormal romance, with plenty of action, adventure and supernatural thrills to go with the happily ever after. Gail writes epic fantasy and urban fantasy, and together with co-author hubby Larry N. Martin, steampunk and comedic horror, all of which have less romance, more explosions. Look for her other books—Witchbane and Badlands. Coming soon—Dark Rivers (Witchbane novel #2) and Lucky Town (a Christmas Badlands novella).

Social Media Links

Blog/Website

Facebook: The Worlds of Morgan Brice 

Twitter: @MorganBriceBook 

Pinterest:  Morgan Brice board

Amazon Author page

Goodreads

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A MelanieM Review: Born of Air (Dragon Soul #4) by Sean Michael

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Meet the Beteferoce brothers: five dragon shifters, each with a strong elemental power. And each with a fierce desire to find his soul mate…

He said he was flying on a silver dragon. He called me “Markus-meine.” Who would know all that? Who? And how?

SWAT cop and dragon shifter Mark Beteferoce had—and lost—a soul mate. He’s finally at the point where he can get through the days without thinking about what used to be…until he tastes Quincy O’Brien’s doughnuts and takes him home to play.

Quincy O’Brien is a gifted baker, but at night he dreams of soaring through the sky on dragonback and being topped by the perfect Dom. Mark satisfies the kinky urges Quincy has only explored in his subconscious, pushing his limits and caring for him afterward.

From the start, their connection was more than sexual. It’s known; it’s familiar somehow. And it’s slowly driving Mark insane. What shouldn’t be possible most certainly is, and the bond between himself and Quincy runs deeper than either of them could ever have realized.

The fourth in the Dragon Soul series, Born of Air is Mark’s story, the Betereroce brother I’ve been waiting for.  Mark lost his soul mate long ago when he was murdered and since then, he’s seen little of his brothers or their new soul mates because of the memories and pain it brings up.  Mark believes there is only one soul mate and he’s lost his  forever.  Until he meets a baker who dreams of flying and a silver dragon.

Born of Air departs from the other three stories because Mark has already found and lost his mate.  In the three previous books, all three brothers needed to find their mates and had help courtesy of a tattoo and  an elf.  That  didn’t happen here. The connection that Mark and Quincy make is a familiar one and  one that Mark immediately rejects as impossible.

That impossibility will bring all the other brothers and their mates into this story to help the bonding and the relationship survive, a element I just love.

Another hallmark of this series?  The incendiary sex scenes between Quincy and Mark.  Hot, hot, hot.  Here and in every story.  These brothers have a love of kink and bdsm.  Each story should  come with its own fan or two.

I wish there had been more back history to  Mark’s previous relationship and it’s ending but perhaps that’s coming in the books yet to be released.  I hope so as I get the feeling Sean Michael is building up to some big event here when all the brothers have found their soulmates.

I don’t really feel these are standalone stories but one that builds upon the others so if you are new to the series start with Branded by Flames and work your way through all the books.  They are quick reads, very entertaining and very, very, hot!

I definitely  recommend them all.

 

Cover art is interesting and works for branding the story.

Sales Link:  Carina Press | Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 246 pages
Published June 4th 2018 by Carina Press
Original TitleBorn of Air
ASINB07B519L19
Edition LanguageEnglish
Series Dragon Soul

BLOG TOUR – Under Five by Michael War (excerpt and giveaway)

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BLOG TOUR

Book Title: Under Five

Author: Michael War

Cover Artist: Aisha Akeju

Genre/s: Gay, Contemporary, Urban Fantasy

Length: 40 000 words/172 pages

Release Date: May 30, 2018

Goodreads 

Blurb

Mike is good looking, charming, and has no trouble attracting men—as long as his clothes stay on. But the moment they come off, something always seems to go terribly wrong. When his sister takes him to a faith healer to fix the problem, he is provided with a spell—and left with a lot of doubts.

But after meeting Kevin, Mike decides to give the spell a try…

Excerpt

This was the first time anyone asked for the lights to be completely out. I mean, there are some guys who like the dark, but they always want some sort of light coming in. It could be a candle, night light, or just a crack from the closet, just something to keep things from being completely black. But not this time. Carlo wanted the lights completely off. I wasn’t sure whether to be offended, or to simply just go with the flow.  

But it did kind of bother me, even while we were kissing and rubbing each other all over the place. I tried to forget about the fact that we messed around the last time with all the lights on, but it was still nagging me a bit.  

“Everything okay, Mike?” Carlo asked. While I couldn’t see them, I knew his emerald green eyes were pointed directly at me. They were fake, but man, did they compliment him so much.

“Nah, I’m good, just come over here,” I cooed, pulling him up closer to me. We still had our clothes on, so it was easy to grab his shirt and bring him in closer. I wanted to feel his hot breath against my neck, followed by his gentle kisses. The two times we hooked up before, we only kissed, and both times we only had our shirts off. But this time around, I wanted more. I wanted him to take me, to ravage me. To fill me up and not stop until we were both on the verge of exploding.

I could tell that Carlo was a bit surprised, even though I still hadn’t completely adjusted to the dark, but he seemed into it and let me drag his mouth closer to mine. He took his hands and gently placed them on the back of my head, pulling a little on my hair but not enough to cause me pain.  “Don’t stop, keep going,” I moaned. Carlo intensified his kisses and started moving down towards my neck, then pulled back and little and began to pull my shirt off. I started on his before my shirt even hit the floor, and now for the first time tonight, we were both finally showing some skin towards each other.  After a bit of kissing and exploring, I forgot about the light situation. Thanks to the moon beaming through my curtains and right toward my bed I was able to make out where I wanted my hands to go. Carlo had the body type I loved; bearish, with broad shoulders and big, strong arms. But what got me was his chest. In the moonlight and without a shirt, Carlo was simply beautiful. Even though I wasn’t a bear myself, I could appreciate the slight hairy trail he had going from his chest down to his stomach. I could see that the trail went even further, and I wanted him to reveal more.  

Carlo continued to kiss me down my body, but I stopped him right before he got to my stomach.  “Let me take off your pants,” I ordered. I was hoping he would be turned on by the dominance in voice and simply obey. “No, you first. I want to show you everything I have to offer you,” Carlo responded, his hands rubbing the top of my shorts, fingers slightly pushing under the elastic. He let it snap a few times before slightly licking his lips.  I arched up a bit to help him out, and he obliged by grabbing my shorts at both ends and pulled them off along with my underwear. He placed his hand on my now erect cock, then stopped for an awkward minute.

“Something wrong?” I asked.  “No, um, just thought of something,” he replied, giggling a bit before continuing. “Now get ready to have the best sex that you….”  He didn’t finish. How could he now that he was giggling like crazy? I wanted to jump out of the bed right then and there, but he still had my dick in his hand, and even though it was getting flaccid, I didn’t want to make any sudden moves and damage myself.  “Would you mind letting go? I would like to get dressed.” He did, even though he was still laughing like a lunatic. I picked up my clothes and put my underwear on, then went for the lamp by my bed. Carlo was sprawled out across my bed. While his laughing had stifled a bit, his red face showed that something had amused him to no end.  

I slipped my shorts back on and began to gather up his things.  “Oh come on, don’t be that way. I’m sorry. We can still mess around. I just need a minute.” The moment he finished his sentence, Carlo began laughing again. He put his hand over his mouth so it wouldn’t be so loud, but it was no use.  

“What the hell is so funny? I was good enough for you before. What changed now?” I stared him down hard; so hard that I was able to break his laughing fit up once and for all.  

“I don’t want to offend you. You’re a nice guy. I was just taken by surprise. You know how it is with these things,” Carlo stated as he got up from the bed and walked over towards me.  “No, I don’t know. I don’t have a clue about what is going on.”

Carlo took my hand and looked me straight in the eyes with his emerald greens. For a second, I almost melted. But then the laughing started going on in my head again, and my fury came back full force.  Looking at Carlo’s face, I could tell he had something he wanted to say, but just couldn’t. He kept biting his lip, and you could tell he was thinking very carefully before he spoke again. The anticipation wasn’t helping my tolerance, so I knew that I had to speed things up a bit.

“Just spit it out.” Carlo looked at the floor one more time, then right back at me.  “It’s just….well….I…..I didn’t expect it to be so small.” I really don’t remember what happened after that, but I do recall that I was rushing him out in just his underwear, not giving him anytime to put his other clothes back on. He pleaded with me a bit, asking to stay and make it up to me. And I almost did — until he mentioned that his was just used to bigger.

Buy Links

Less Than Three Press

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Barnes and Noble

About the Author

Michael War is a writer whose real life tends to be on the boring side, which is why his imagination seems to float towards gay romance. Aside from writing about beautiful gay men of all types (bears, jocks, twinks) getting it on, he also enjoys writing poetry and screenplays. War holds an MFA in Creative Writing and plans to write more romance themed books in the near future. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook  for updates on upcoming stories or with any questions or comments. Or, you can read his blog for some mindless ramblings.

Social Media Links

Blog/Website

Facebook

Twitter

Giveaway

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a $10 Amazon Gift Card or an ebook copy of Roommate Adventure by Michael War.

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BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE

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EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT TOUR Moon Illusion by Michelle Osgood

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Title  MOON ILLUSION (The Better to Kiss You With 3 ) by Michelle Osgood

Publisher: Interlude Press

Release Date (Print & Ebook):  March 22, 2018

Buy links:

Interlude Press Web Store: https://store.interludepress.com/collections/moon-illusion-by-michelle-osgood

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2tddArC

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/moon-illusion-michelle-osgood/1127756493?ean=2940155070726

Apple: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/moon-illusion-michelle-osgood/1127756493?ean=2940155070726

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/774932

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/moon-illusion-1

Book Depository: https://www.bookdepository.com/Moon-Illusion-Michelle-Osgood/9781945053566 /?a_aid=InterludePress

Indiebound: https://www.indiebound.org/book/9781945053566?aff=InterludePress

Book blurb:

Nathan Roberts was just your average polyamorous librarian living in Vancouver until his best friend, Deanna started dating a werewolf. While hosting the small pack in his apartment while they hid from the underground network of Huntsmen, Nathan enjoyed a casual fling with Cole, the pack leader’s brother. But now, he may just be falling for him.

When his neighbor is murdered, Nathan is convinced the death is linked to the supernatural, but Cole and their friends deny any paranormal connection. This leads to a fracture of trust in their relationship, and Cole’s pack is left to deal with an unknown killer on the loose. As Nathan pursues answers on his own, he must come to terms with the truth, and his feelings for Cole.

Exclusive Excerpt for Scattered Thoughts:

Content warning: Blood

Nathan flung out his arms to catch himself, but it wasn’t enough. His palms slid against the floor; his forearms and butt landed with enough force to bruise before his head cracked against the cement floor. Stars burst across his vision. He had one breathless, suspended moment of relief that he was relatively intact until pain radiated like a halo from the back of his skull.

Nathan groaned. His eyes blinked open. Ow.

He sat up gingerly. His hands and arms were wet with something dark: a viscous liquid that was the unpleasant color of blood. Ew.

Now he’d have to shower before his nap. And, maybe, the way his head pounded sickeningly, he’d also have to throw up the pad thai he’d just eaten.

He’d let go of the garbage and the recycling as well as his phone on his way down. They all seemed to have landed clear of the mess that Nathan slipped on, but empty containers were strewn across the floor.

Careful of his sure-to-be-bruised body, Nathan eased himself up. When he wobbled to his feet, the smell caught him—hot copper, like a penny left sitting in the sun.

Not looks like blood, but is blood.

The pad thai threatened to come up then and there. Nathan gritted his teeth against the swell of nausea, closed his eyes, and breathed through his mouth. He realized his mistake instantly when the heavy scent coated his throat. He gagged and lurched to the side. He grabbed the nearest recycling bin to steady himself and took several deep breaths through his nose. CARDBOARD PAPER ONLY the bin announced. Nathan focused on the crisp shape of letters until the immediate need to puke passed. He wasn’t ruling out puking later. In fact, he suspected it was likely.

After one more deep breath, Nathan steeled himself and turned.

Blood, more than he’d ever seen, more than he realized was possible to see, coated the floor like spilled paint. Five liters. Just over five liters—that’s how much blood could be in the human body. His brain helpfully offered up an image of a plastic, four-liter milk jug and a second one-liter carton. When he thought about it like that, with the neat, sanitized whiteness of the two-percent milk he used to drink as a kid, the amount seemed terribly innocuous, hardly anything. But the amount on the floor, the amount that pooled on the concrete, that drew his eyes unerringly to its center, there was nothing innocuous about that, nor about the body.

It was a body. That was one thing Nathan was certain of, even if the rest of his reality was slowly tilting sideways. It was a body and not a person, because people couldn’t survive losing all that blood—four point seven to five point five liters, depending on size—just as they couldn’t survive losing their heads or both their hands without immediate medical attention. And whoever this was had lost all the above.

It was total overkill. To kill someone—and it wasn’t as if Nathan planned on killing someone, but it paid to have some idea how to kill someone just in case it was ever necessary— there were a hell of a lot of easier ways to do it than behead them. Besides, it wasn’t as though swords or axes or other traditional beheading tools were common in 2017 Vancouver.

Axes.

That thought sparked in Nathan’s mind. The only people he’d seen who carried axes were the Huntsmen. And sure, they were metaphorical axes rather than literal axes—they were tattoos of an axe—but if the Huntsmen could get their hands on automatic weapons, an actual axe was hardly a stretch.

Nathan crept forward, careful to edge around the blood as much as possible. He should feel something, he knew: guilt, fear, horror. But curiosity fueled him and, for now, it had pushed aside everything else, even nausea, and replaced it with a much simpler need: to know.

Why behead a human? Why behead a human and take their hands? It didn’t make sense. Real life wasn’t an episode of Dexter. If you wanted to kill someone, there were a thousand easier ways.

Say what you wanted to kill wasn’t human, though. Say it was superhuman. Supernatural.

 

About Michelle Osgood:

Michelle Osgood writes queer, feminist romance from her tiny apartment in Vancouver, BC. She loves stories in all media, especially those created by Shonda Rhimes, and dreams of one day owning a wine cellar to rival Olivia Pope’s. She is active in Vancouver’s poly and LGBTQ communities, never turns down a debate about pop culture, and is trying to learn how to cook. Her novels The Better to Kiss You With (2016) and Huntsmen (2017) were published by Interlude Press.

Connect with Michelle: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads

Giveaway

Enter to win Moon Illusion by Michelle Osgood:

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Length (Print & Ebook): 210 pages / 61,000 words

Subgenre: Contemporary Romance: Paranormal, LGBT/Urban Fantasy

Author’s content warnings:

Moon Illusion by Michelle Osgood

Additional Themes

  • Insomnia, paranoia, alcohol and marijuana use
  • Chapter 5: Graphic violence and an animal death during a dream sequence
  • Chapters 7-8: Gore
  • Chapter 16: Animal death
  • Chapters 18-20: Graphic violence during a dream sequence
  • Chapters 33-44: Domestic abuse, graphic violence, stalking

RELEASE DAY BLITZ Moon Illusion (The Better to Kiss You With 3 ) by Michelle Osgood (exclusive excerpt and giveaway)

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Title  MOON ILLUSION (The Better to Kiss You With 3 ) by Michelle Osgood

Publisher: Interlude Press

Release Date (Print & Ebook):  March 22, 2018

Buy links:

Interlude Press Web Store: https://store.interludepress.com/collections/moon-illusion-by-michelle-osgood

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2tddArC

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/moon-illusion-michelle-osgood/1127756493?ean=2940155070726

Apple: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/moon-illusion-michelle-osgood/1127756493?ean=2940155070726

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/774932

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/moon-illusion-1

Book Depository: https://www.bookdepository.com/Moon-Illusion-Michelle-Osgood/9781945053566 /?a_aid=InterludePress

Indiebound: https://www.indiebound.org/book/9781945053566?aff=InterludePress

Book blurb:

Nathan Roberts was just your average polyamorous librarian living in Vancouver until his best friend, Deanna started dating a werewolf. While hosting the small pack in his apartment while they hid from the underground network of Huntsmen, Nathan enjoyed a casual fling with Cole, the pack leader’s brother. But now, he may just be falling for him.

When his neighbor is murdered, Nathan is convinced the death is linked to the supernatural, but Cole and their friends deny any paranormal connection. This leads to a fracture of trust in their relationship, and Cole’s pack is left to deal with an unknown killer on the loose. As Nathan pursues answers on his own, he must come to terms with the truth, and his feelings for Cole.

Exclusive Excerpt for Scattered Thoughts:

Content warning: Blood

Nathan flung out his arms to catch himself, but it wasn’t enough. His palms slid against the floor; his forearms and butt landed with enough force to bruise before his head cracked against the cement floor. Stars burst across his vision. He had one breathless, suspended moment of relief that he was relatively intact until pain radiated like a halo from the back of his skull.

Nathan groaned. His eyes blinked open. Ow.

He sat up gingerly. His hands and arms were wet with something dark: a viscous liquid that was the unpleasant color of blood. Ew.

Now he’d have to shower before his nap. And, maybe, the way his head pounded sickeningly, he’d also have to throw up the pad thai he’d just eaten.

He’d let go of the garbage and the recycling as well as his phone on his way down. They all seemed to have landed clear of the mess that Nathan slipped on, but empty containers were strewn across the floor.

Careful of his sure-to-be-bruised body, Nathan eased himself up. When he wobbled to his feet, the smell caught him—hot copper, like a penny left sitting in the sun.

Not looks like blood, but is blood.

The pad thai threatened to come up then and there. Nathan gritted his teeth against the swell of nausea, closed his eyes, and breathed through his mouth. He realized his mistake instantly when the heavy scent coated his throat. He gagged and lurched to the side. He grabbed the nearest recycling bin to steady himself and took several deep breaths through his nose. CARDBOARD PAPER ONLY the bin announced. Nathan focused on the crisp shape of letters until the immediate need to puke passed. He wasn’t ruling out puking later. In fact, he suspected it was likely.

After one more deep breath, Nathan steeled himself and turned.

Blood, more than he’d ever seen, more than he realized was possible to see, coated the floor like spilled paint. Five liters. Just over five liters—that’s how much blood could be in the human body. His brain helpfully offered up an image of a plastic, four-liter milk jug and a second one-liter carton. When he thought about it like that, with the neat, sanitized whiteness of the two-percent milk he used to drink as a kid, the amount seemed terribly innocuous, hardly anything. But the amount on the floor, the amount that pooled on the concrete, that drew his eyes unerringly to its center, there was nothing innocuous about that, nor about the body.

It was a body. That was one thing Nathan was certain of, even if the rest of his reality was slowly tilting sideways. It was a body and not a person, because people couldn’t survive losing all that blood—four point seven to five point five liters, depending on size—just as they couldn’t survive losing their heads or both their hands without immediate medical attention. And whoever this was had lost all the above.

It was total overkill. To kill someone—and it wasn’t as if Nathan planned on killing someone, but it paid to have some idea how to kill someone just in case it was ever necessary— there were a hell of a lot of easier ways to do it than behead them. Besides, it wasn’t as though swords or axes or other traditional beheading tools were common in 2017 Vancouver.

Axes.

That thought sparked in Nathan’s mind. The only people he’d seen who carried axes were the Huntsmen. And sure, they were metaphorical axes rather than literal axes—they were tattoos of an axe—but if the Huntsmen could get their hands on automatic weapons, an actual axe was hardly a stretch.

Nathan crept forward, careful to edge around the blood as much as possible. He should feel something, he knew: guilt, fear, horror. But curiosity fueled him and, for now, it had pushed aside everything else, even nausea, and replaced it with a much simpler need: to know.

Why behead a human? Why behead a human and take their hands? It didn’t make sense. Real life wasn’t an episode of Dexter. If you wanted to kill someone, there were a thousand easier ways.

Say what you wanted to kill wasn’t human, though. Say it was superhuman. Supernatural.

 

About Michelle Osgood:

Michelle Osgood writes queer, feminist romance from her tiny apartment in Vancouver, BC. She loves stories in all media, especially those created by Shonda Rhimes, and dreams of one day owning a wine cellar to rival Olivia Pope’s. She is active in Vancouver’s poly and LGBTQ communities, never turns down a debate about pop culture, and is trying to learn how to cook. Her novels The Better to Kiss You With (2016) and Huntsmen (2017) were published by Interlude Press.

Connect with Michelle: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads

Giveaway

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Length (Print & Ebook): 210 pages / 61,000 words

Subgenre: Contemporary Romance: Paranormal, LGBT/Urban Fantasy

Author’s content warnings:

Moon Illusion by Michelle Osgood

Additional Themes

  • Insomnia, paranoia, alcohol and marijuana use
  • Chapter 5: Graphic violence and an animal death during a dream sequence
  • Chapters 7-8: Gore
  • Chapter 16: Animal death
  • Chapters 18-20: Graphic violence during a dream sequence
  • Chapters 33-44: Domestic abuse, graphic violence, stalking