Shadow Company Continues

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Beyond the Veil, Book One of Shadow Company – Aubrie and Logan

That’s right!  Shadow Company will soon have a third book – Of Blood and Magic.  If you haven’t read the first two books in my Shadow Company series, better check out the sale this week.  Both Beyond the Veil and Deliberate Intent are on sale at Amazon.com.  I suggest catching up because I have some exciting news.  Of Blood and Magic is due out in January.  Book three of the Shadow Company series introduces a third ex-Navy SEAL, J.T. Leighton.  Here’s a working blurb.

J.T. Leighton, ex-Navy SEAL, and teammate of Logan Latimer and Duke Taylor starts a new life in Cheniere Station.  Since the Sultan is responsible for J.T. becoming a vampire, he has his own reasons for hunting down the mind-bending shadow walker.  Tall, mysterious and oh, so sexy, J.T. is a licensed private investigator and undercover vampire hunter.

Each member of Shadow Company has a reason to go after the ‘blood viper.’  J.T. seeks the opportunity to join their little band of warriors on a mission to save those enslaved by this demon of pure evil.  He spends his time killing the Sultan’s spawns while masked as an undead P.I.

J.T.’s plans don’t include discovering the woman who disappeared from his life two years before.  Jessie Colter is the one or was before things changed forever.   Her gifts work some sort of spell on J.T. making him believe they can have a future together.  But what does that future hold?  J.T.’s not sure he dares to find out.

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Now, here’s a snippet from Of Blood and Magic:

The night crept over the land moonless and damp.  Late November held a gloomy grip on Louisiana.  No brightly colored leaves floated from the trees any longer.  No crisp cool tinge to the air of Cheniere Station’s advance into winter.  No, the chill was bone deep and miserable.  J.T. glanced up then down the deserted street with a keen eye for trouble.

Like most nights, he prowled the streets looking for a fix.  Not the kind most vampires sought.  No, he hunted other vampires.  J.T. had been a professional vampire slayer since that fateful night in Afghanistan.  The Sultan, a blood viper of pure evil, had turned him.  He was J.T.’s master.  The Sultan viewed him as a blood slave and his number one boy.  The shadow walker saw J.T. as an asset.  His go-to-guy for blood kills.  The irony was the Sultan didn’t want the bodies for blood.  He wanted them for their souls.

For the first year of his existence as a vampire, J.T. performed the duties of a blood slave.  His instructions from the Sultan were to suck the victim’s blood until they were on the verge of death.  Any more and the victim would die and be useless to the Sultan’s plans.  Any less and J.T could die at the hands of the attacked.

Thank the gods the Sultan’s hold over him diminished once he escaped the Middle East.  Here, he exacted vengeance against all who killed ruthlessly and without remorse.  His notion was killing them was his way to even the score.  J.T. sought justice because there were those who were turned and fought to survive while holding on to some small ruminant of their humanity.

“So, you have a death wish.”  The observation was one he used over and over again.  Each time he confronted a fellow bloodsucker, he taunted his target.  A surprised vampire made for an easy kill.  Plus, J.T, liked the thrill of a face to face encounter.  Sure, a stake through the heart of an unsuspecting vampire was quicker.  The fact was, J.T. craved the confrontation.  If he was going to kill his own kind for a living, why not enjoy the job.   In his line of work, there was never a shortage of prey.  It didn’t matter that he would never kill them all.  J.T. like to think of his nightly hunts as a way of leaving his mark.  That’s what he did, too.  To date, he had killed over a hundred bloodsuckers since returning from the desert.  The job beat the hell out of wandering the streets at night and thinking of the woman he could never hold again.

The vampire whirled, his eyes registered the shock.

J.T.’s feral growl signaled an attack.  A lunge off the ground sent him flying into space before dropping atop the shocked blood hunter.  After all, vampires did not kill vampires.  Laws against such were in place and had been for centuries.

The vampire’s weak punch glanced off J.T.’s chin.  He grappled with the bloodsucker.  Reaching out, he managed to grip that one by the throat.  Wasting no time, he went for the jugular.  Blood spurted as J.T. sank his teeth into the neck of his prey.  His victim’s life fluid filled his mouth and throat as he drank his fill.  Soon, the lifeless body lay crumbled at his feet.  “Good riddance.”  Wiping blood from his face, J.T. whirled at the scent of more vamps.  They were close.

Their spokesman sneered, his fangs shining in the street light.  “Gonna need a little bit of magic to finish us all off, traitor.  You are a hunted man, you know.  The high council has a bounty on your head.  Your days, they are numbered.”  Sauntering sideways, the cocky fellow examined his opponent.

“That fact isn’t going to slow me down.  You’re the next to die.”  Before the trio could blink, J.T. materialized behind them.  Wheeling, each, in turn, found their doom.  The blade in J.T. hand dripped with fresh vampire blood.  Quick and efficient, he wiped the blade on his jeans.  “No need to waste their carcasses,” he mused aloud.  “The werewolves can always make use of a fresh kill.”  Satisfied with a glance about for witnesses, J.T. scooped up the headless monsters and took to the sky.  Dawn was approaching, and he grew weary.

***

Look for a cover reveal coming next month.  Thanks for dropping by and leave comments below.  I’d love hearing from you.

Catherine

Beyond the Veil  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N4FIW55

Deliberate Intent  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B072TNDGYJ

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Flash Sale! Deliberate Intent is #FREE!

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Fabulous Friday (today, August 11th) and Sublime Saturday (August 12th) just got better.  You can purchase a copy of my latest paranormal romance, Deliberate Intent, book two of Shadow Company #FREE at Amazon for these two days!!

 

But wait.  There’s more.  How about a snippet?  You’ve got it!  Logan Latimar, a warlock, and ex Navy SEAL is confronted with what he hopes is a vision.  Reality has fingers as cold as ice though, and he needs solace.  Check out this steamy scene in the Louisiana heat.  Hugs and Happy Friday!

Deliberate Intent

Lingering at the door, Logan made a show of waving.  The cars drove away followed by the dust of a dirt drive.  Guests were fun but the day had been long.  “That went well.”  His estimation settled in the silence.  Turning, he searched the great room for Aubrie.  She’d been quiet most of the evening.  He missed her usual banter with Pilot, her shadow walker friend.  Katie, Aubrie’s best friend, and Gus, Logan’s brother probably hadn’t notice.  He did.  Had Aubrie, the seer already figured him out?  No, discovering his secret would cause an eruption.

Padding barefooted to the sofa, he dropped down on the cushions.  The day had been tediously long.  Words were stilted.  Conversation with Aubrie came at a price.  Glancing up, he noted the ceiling fan’s swift swirl.  Logan closed his eyes.  How had he gotten himself into this mess?  Even knowing the answer didn’t help.  A casual encounter with Connie, his ex at Joiner’s grocery had mushroomed into a full-blown situation.  Throwing an arm over his head, he propped his feet on the coffee table.  Aubrie would protest if she walked in about then.  She didn’t.  He could hear water running – in the shower.  Most times, he would slip out of his jeans to join her.  The notion of his hands on her silky skin appeared in his mind’s eye.  Those long legs wrapped around his hips.  Suds rolled down their bodies as he kissed her senseless over and over again.  Giggles and groans accompanied the hot, wet shower sex.  The image was one of his favorites.

The laughter switched.  No longer alluringly sweet, the sound rang raw as if on the verge of hysterical.  Logan opened his eyes.  Connie stood on the opposite side of the coffee table.  She cocked a hip while smirking at him.  Logan jumped.

“What’s the matter?  Not who you were expecting?”

His senses sharpened.  He went into military mode.  “What do you want?”  Nasty rimmed the question.

“That’s not very hospitable of you, Logan.”  Easy as you please, she strolled around the table before dropping down in front of him.  “Why don’t you let me work my magic on you, Latimar.”

Logan glared at the fingers slipping up his thigh.  Was she real?  With a free hand, he clamped down hard and unyielding.  “Don’t.”  Noting the chill in her skin, he shifted to stand.  “Get out.  Now!”

“All right.  But I’ll be back.  After all, I got more of a right to you than Aubrie does.”  With a jerk of her head in the bathroom’s direction, Connie stood, giving her long blonde tresses a good shake out.  Sauntering to the door, she narrowed her eyes at him.

“Have a nice night, Logan or should I call you daddy?”  With those words, she disappeared.

Logan released a sigh in a long, laborious effort to somehow cleanse his skin of her touch.  No good.  The incident wasn’t merely a dream.  He could smell her cheap scent. She had been in the room.  Flesh and blood, Connie had stood almost where he stood now.  “What the hell,” he growled in the silence.  “I’ve seen a ghost or an apparition, maybe a vision.  Something.”  Glancing down, he noted his hands shook.

“Who’re you talking to in here?”  Aubrie appeared in the door to the bedroom.  “I heard voices in here.  Did Katie forget something?”  Raking a fat comb through her chocolate lengths, she eyed him coolly.

Ice hardened along his spine.  “Nobody.  I was talking to myself.”  The habitual shove of hands in pockets followed by clearing his throat spoke volumes.  Logan would put money on it.  “Are you getting ready for bed?”

“Yeah, are you coming?”  Her questioning eyes tracked him as he gathered up his boots.

“No.  I’m not tired right now.  Hey, I think I’ll fly over to Gus’.  He said somebody’s been hanging around the garage after dark.  I want to scout out the area.  Sorta give him some help.  Won’t be long.  Go on to bed.  I’ll be back soon.  Okay?”  Reluctance appeared in her features.  He stepped to her.  “Look, I promise, I won’t be long.  Lock the doors.  I’ll use my key when I get back.”

“Sure.”

The one word grazed across the rawness of having lied to her.  You did not lie to your soulmate.  Stepping to Aubrie, Logan eased in for a kiss.  Soft and gentle, his lips skimmed over hers.  Without effort, his mind relaxed as her hands touched his shoulders.  She had a magnificent talent for making the outside world go away.  Reaching up, he cradled her face in his fingers.  Long, pleasurable moments passed as his mouth swept the corners of hers.  Nibbling her flesh, he bit the corner of her top lip before sucking.  She molded her body into his.  The easy way she gave into his attention stoked his ardor.  Small pulses of electricity ran the length of his body.  His shaft hardened as she stirred his blood with her hands.

“Logan?”

“Yeah, Sugar?”  His heart thrummed with a new and vital beat.

“Make love to me.”

In the light shining in from the bedroom window, her request hit him with the force of steel.  The words were ones he had heard before.  A flicker of memory brought back the night they’d made love under the stars.  This woman channeled his emotions like no other.  No magic compared to her touch.

With a groan, he walked her backward to the bed.  The urgency for her drove him to pull her nightshirt over her head.  “I need you, now,” he whispered.

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Discover more snippets of Deliberate Intent right here where paranormal and romance collide.  Thanks for dropping by.

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Excerpt and Reviews for Deliberate Intent

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Beyond the Veil, Book One of Shadow Company – Aubrie and Logan
I’m happy to share one more excerpt from Deliberate Intent.  In this excerpt, Logan wakes from a dream which cannot be.  His life as an ex-SEAL and warlock is hard enough without this being true.  See what I mean…

Thunder sounded right outside the window.  Logan woke with a jerk.  His skin ran wet with a dampness as thick as if he had run a marathon.  Glancing at the clock on the nightstand, he cursed.  “Three in the morning.”  Nothing good ever happened at three in the morning.  The truth of his opinion weighted his steps as he got up to pad to the window.  Rain hit the glass in a steady, unhurried stream.  A dull ache signaled the onset of a headache.  Another damned migraine.  Where had the dream steered into such an unholy place?

Logan turned to gaze at Aubrie.  The woman he loved lay asleep without concern or reason for fear.  Intent on keeping things just that way, he slipped out of the room.  The deck ran the length of Aubrie’s country home.  Leaning on the rail, he searched the shadows of the shallow valley below.  Unsure if he’d been more disturbed by the fact he’d had a dream about sex with someone other than the woman he was marrying or the notion he’d considered the act therapy, Logan stood wishing for a cigarette.  He had quit smoking after returning from the secular sandbox known as Afghanistan.  War held a man in its profane grip much longer than necessary or even considered normal.  So what did a man do when the dream world woke him at three in the morning with the worst wet dream imaginable, one headlining the ex-woman in his life?

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I returned from Texas and a birthday weekend with my grand daughter to find something special waiting for me.  Reviews are starting to come in, and I’m pleased to report, the book is well received.  This post includes those reviews and more. Deliberate Intent is featured at I Love Vampire Novels today.  A great site for all lovers of paranormal.Beach Travel Photo Collage

 

First, the Reviews
One reader had this to say on Amazon:
5.0 out of 5 stars FriendsSaving Friends
By Jane – Happy Camper  August 3, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This story is intense.  It shows you how true friends are worth more than gold.
Logan and Aubrie are going to get married! Katie, her best friend, is helping out with the plans. But Logan can’t figure out what’s going on.He’s dreaming things that he never would, and the dreams seem to be real. This ex Navy Seal who is a Warlock has big trouble! And even Aubrie, the seer can’t see what’s going on. Is the Demon Back? Is it a Shadow Walker? Something is out to get him, and is doing it with Deliberate Intent! Duke, one of Logan’s former Navy Seal buddies and a true friend, is being bothered with dreams too. He comes to visit Logan to figure it out. Sparks fly between him and Katie, but they are more concerned with helping Aubrie and Logan. Beyond the Veil proved only a teaser into the world of shadow-walkers, demons, portals, veils, and the Netherworld with Seers and Warlocks and the ghost of Marie Laveau. This story takes you into a puzzle that needs to be solved. But will it? Will Duke and Katie help their best friends? OMG, you just have to read it!!
Another reader shared this review:
on August 3, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I loved getting to know Duke and Katie and watching them fall in love. It was great to revisit and see what Logan and Aubrie have been up to also. This story picks up a few weeks after they have taken care of the demon Beyond The
Veil and gotten back to normal.
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Deliberate Intent is a Featured Read at I Love Vampire Novels.  Check it out here:
Thanks for loving where paranormal and romance collide.  Until next time, thanks for dropping by.
Catherine
 

Friday Teaser – Deliberate Intent – A snippet

Happy Friday, everyone.  This week, I’m sorting through the plot of Deliberate Intent and came across a secondary character scene that pretty much sums up the problem facing Shadow Company.  The backstory begins with dreams so real they can kill you.  Shadow walkers have upped the ante with their mind control.  Manipulation is the key to garnering power when the dreams evolve into reality.  So the new puppeteer, The Sultan, creates nightmares for our team members.  One such dream has Logan Latimar, the warlock from Beyond the Veil, so concerned, he asks his fiancee, Aubrie Sinclar, the seer from book one,  to visit the woman featured in his nightmare to see if she can figure out who’s behind the trouble.  Here’s the meeting between Aubrie and Connie Colter, Logan’s former lover.

 Deliberate Intent, Book Two of Shadow Company

“I can’t come into the pharmacy to work today.  Got some things to do.”  Aubrie hurriedly texted the message to her best friend, Katie.  “Talk to you later.”

The dirt road rambled through the countryside outside of Cheniere Station like a lover eluding capture.  Not intending on going anywhere except back into her lover’s arms, the road ended abruptly when that lover reached for her.

Dust swirled despite the dew lingering in the canopy of trees bordering either side of the dusty road. The air hung heavy and sultry.   Aubrie got out of the car, eyeing the ramshackle house, the last façade of a fallen hero.  He was a farmer at heart.  The essence of Luke Colter, SEAL team six team member and friend of Logan’s, lingered in the telltale remnants of the barn and rusting equipment.

“Morning.”  Connie stood propped against the weather stressed paint of the tenement house.  The early morning mist settled over the fallow ground of her dead husband’s cotton fields.  Her hair was damp as if she’d just bathed.  Her cotton wrap covered her milky white skin to a point close to her upper thigh.  “I’m surprised to see you.”

“Sorry I dropped by so early.  I wondered if we could talk.”  Aubrie scrubbed her hands on the back pockets of her jeans.

“Sure.  Come on in.  I got coffee.”  Shoving off of the porch support, Connie sauntered back through the broken down screen door one hip at a time.

The dimly lit front room smelled of dust and garbage gone over.  Maybe the visit wouldn’t take too long.  Following Connie into the kitchen, she offered, “Coffee sounds good.”  Thinking of the several cups she’d already had, she shoved at the idea for more caffeine.  Still wondering if coming out was a good idea, she smiled.  “How are you, Connie?”

Standing at the counter of the vintage kitchen, Connie poured.  “Fine, you?”

The smell of caffeine and cream reminded Aubrie of the last time Connie had poured coffee for her.  She and Logan had visited Hightower’s diner.  Connie waited on them and served coffee.  Malice lay right below the surface on that occasion.  Remembering the hot Java burn on her hand from spilled coffee, Aubrie wondered if the same was true today.  “I’m fine.  Been busy.”

“Yeah, busy.”  Connie’s laugh was mirthless.  “The diner’s been keeping me occupied.  Seems the oil wells nearby have plenty of employees.  Cream?”

“Yes, please.”  She waited as Connie set the cup down on the table.  “Thanks.”

Dropping into the other chair, Connie smiled slyly, “Sit down.”  Tapping a polished fingernail on the Formica surface, she eyed Aubrie speculatively.  “What brings you all this way, Aubrie.”

There was no hiding the fact.  Aubrie’s visiting Logan’s former lover to ‘chat’ was highly suspect.  “Logan said you were dealing with some things.  Asked me to talk to you.  Since I’m a seer, he thought I might be able to help.”  The shrug wasn’t planned.  Wincing inside, Aubrie glanced about the drab kitchen with its faded paint.  Light spilled in the one tight window over the sink.  Somewhere in the shadows, a room fan hummed in the silence.

“He did, did he?”  Connie tapped a lacquered nail on the tabletop.  “Seems like our Logan is having a difficult time with me lately.”

Connie’s scrutiny made Aubrie uncomfortable.  Funny, but the woman seated across from her seemed to be reading Aubrie’s mind, instead of the other way around, she mused.  Aubrie shrugged again.  “You know how men are.  They get spooked when a woman says she’s got troubles.  Seems like feminine wiles aren’t their forte’.

Connie sniffed.  Giving her dishwater blonde hair a flip over her shoulder, she reached out, snatching up the pack of cigarettes on the tabletop.  Thumping the open pack against her index finger, she asked, “Want one?”

Waving away the offer, Aubrie answered.  “No, thanks.”

With a shrug, Connie pulled the cigarette out and lit the tip with a ‘Geaux Saints’ lighter.  The slow trail of the smoke slide toward the water stained ceiling.  “No wiles here.  Just facts.  If Logan can’t deal with that, then who needs him anyway.  Right?”

Connie was harboring some resentment.  That was apparent in her words.  Careful not to poke at the fire brewing, Aubrie sipped her coffee.  “I guess.  You want to tell me what’s going on?  Maybe I can help.”  Her fingers slid around the cup for safety.  No sense in reaching out and accidentally seeing what the woman wasn’t going to volunteer.  She’d have to go with what Connie offered.

“I told Logan something he wasn’t ready to believe.  If I hadn’t been present when it happened, I’m not sure I’d believe it either.  It seems I’m pregnant.  He’s the daddy.”

Aubrie’s hand tightened on the coffee cup.  Now, she desperately wanted to reach over and see the truth.  Air suddenly became a precious commodity.  “What makes you think he’s the father?”

Tamping out her cigarette in the ashtray, Connie paused.  Her mouth lay in a flat line as she gauged her response carefully.  Leaning in on one elbow, she eyed Aubrie smugly.  “Because he’s the only man I’ve been with in a long while.”

The coffee in the cup vibrated.  The tension rippled up Aubrie’s arm.  The need to defend Logan surfaced.  She swallowed the bile in reflex.  “You’re lying.  You can’t have him, so you don’t want anyone else to have him either.”  Her cool demeanor shattered as Aubrie stood.  Fight or flight teased her courage.  “This is your way of ruining our wedding, isn’t it?”  Taking a step backward, Aubrie wished to run as far and as fast as she could go.  “Your way of keeping him even if he doesn’t love you.”

“I wouldn’t be so sure about that last part if I were you.  That’s not what Logan told me while he was inside me.  You’d better check your facts.  Where’s he been going lately?  He hasn’t been working down at the garage as much, has he?  As for your wedding – people marry every day.  Doesn’t make it stick.”

Doesn’t make it stick.  The words rang in Aubrie’s head.  She wheeled.  The light went out for a second before she reached the front door.  Somehow she made it down the steps.  Where had the lead in her step come from?  Her breath came in short, hard pants.  The constriction in her chest was real.  Behind the wheel of the car, she cursed the anxiety attack for zapping her nerve, Aubrie turned the key in the ignition, spinning out as she left.

***

Trouble’s brewing in Cheniere Station.  Deliberate Intent is nearing a close, which means a release date is coming up.  In the meantime, check out Beyond the Veil, Book One of Shadow Company for the start to the series.  SEALS and magic collide in this test of wills.

Thanks for dropping by.  I would love to hear your thoughts.

Catherine