Tuesday, January 17, 2023

The Lives of Lilly Parris by Daniel Sugar #Paranormal #AltHistory


The Lives of Lilly Parris by Daniel Sugar


Let yourself fall through time with Lilly Parris, a reincarnated witch.

 Experience the horrors of the Salem witch trials, the terror of the French Revolution, and the shock of the Russian Revolution. Follow Lilly through the Second World War, the English Civil War, and 19th century, Victorian England during the time of Jack the Ripper. 

Live the lives of Lilly Parris.




Salem Burning Book 1:

In 1692, a disreputable young man named Kyle Edwards breaks his engagement by accusing his fiancee, Lilly Parris, of witchcraft. Kyle is a liar; he does not believe in witchcraft, he is simply trying to get rid of Lilly. But Kyle is in for a shock because, as it turns out, Lilly really is a witch. “Salem Burning” is a fast-paced, brand-new take on the Salem witch trials. 




The Witch And The Guillotine Book 2:

After narrowly escaping the horrors of the Salem witch trials, Lilly Parris comes of age in 18th century France, where she is pampered by Louis XVI and pursued by one of history’s greatest fiends: Maximilien Robespierre, the monster who sent thousands of innocent men, women and children to the guillotine. “The Witch and the Guillotine” is a fast-paced, brand-new take on the French Revolution. 




The Witch and the Revolution Book 3:

As the Tsar’s subjects turn against him, Lilly Parris races to save Anastasia Romanov and her brother Alexis - the heir to the Russian throne. “The Witch and the Revolution” is a fast-paced, brand-new take on the Russian Revolution. 







The Witch And The Resistance Book 4:

As the Allies prepare to liberate Europe, Lilly Parris learns of a diabolical Nazi plot. “The Witch and The Resistance” is a fast-paced, brand-new take on the Second World War. 







The Witch And The Merry Monarch Book 5:

After witnessing the execution of King Charles I, Lilly Parris tries to save the life of his son, Charles II. “The Witch and The Merry Monarch” is a fast-paced, brand-new take on the English Civil War. 







The Witch And The Physician Book 6:

As fear grips London, Lilly Parris matches wits with one of history’s most notorious serial killers. “The Witch and the Physician” is a fast-paced, brand-new take on a killing spree that shocked the world. 








#AlternativeHistory #FantasyFiction #ParanormalFiction #Witchcraft #Witches #HistoricalFiction #ParanormalHistorical #AlternateHistorySciFi

Thursday, January 12, 2023

Voting Closes This Saturday January 14

 Bewitching Book Tours has been nominated for 

best Promotional Firms, Sites, and Resources


Please vote here 

https://critters.org/predpoll/promotions.shtml




Ghosts and Legends of Genesee & Lapeer Counties 

has been nominated for best non-fiction book of 2022


Please vote here 

https://critters.org/predpoll/nonfictionbook.s

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

The Immanence Series by Linda Robertson Reinhardt

Covenant with the Devil 
The Immanence Series
Book One
Linda Robertson Reinhardt

Genre: Dark Fantasy
Publisher: Igni House Publishing
Date of Publication: Oct 31, 2022
ISBN: 9781685440077 
ASIN: B0BKJXJZMY
Number of pages:   506 pages
Word Count: 118,000
Cover Artist: Linda Robertson Reinhardt

Book Description: 

After a car crash killed her family and left her in a coma, divine intervention provided Jovienne with a set of enhanced skills and directed her into Andrei’s care. He’s instructed her through years of intense demon slayer training.

Before sending her into the grueling final test, Andrei reveals a truth he’s kept hidden: if she passes, she will be transformed into an angel. His deception threatens to undermine her efforts, but after the hard-won battle, Jovienne is remade.

She quickly realizes this isn’t the life she was promised, and it isn’t what she wants. But there’s more to Andrei’s secrets and lies, and, worse, the man she trusted has manipulated her into eternal servitude.

Good thing she has a few secrets of her own. They might be the only thing that could set her free.

Listen to the Immanence Soundtrack

Book Trailer: https://youtu.be/qG3suMw5SvQ

Amazon  

Excerpt Book One

While washing up the dinner dishes, Andrei heard Jovienne’s door open down the hall. She called, “Sun’s gonna set soon. You ready?”

He rinsed the last dish and placed it in the rack. “Yeah. Are you?” He moved to lean in the doorway, drying his calloused hands on a dishtowel.

On one knee, Jovienne tightened the lacing on her boot. “Almost.”

He glanced around the empty living room where they sometimes sparred. The walls had been drab green long before they moved in. Stains marred the ceiling, some from age and others from leaks. The floor wasn’t much better. Worn and dark, the boards had little shine left. They all creaked under foot.

He imagined the abhadhim had far better living quarters than this. Though he was stuck here, she wasn’t. She deserved better.

She stood and tossed her head, resettling her long mane of black hair. Rocking from her heels to her toes, she tested the feel of the footwear, then approached the wide wooden cabinet. As usual, she studied the weapons on the shelves. She always started by loading her pockets with throwing stars. Next, she would strap leather dagger sheaths to her wrists.  

He smiled to himself when she did just that. He knew her well.

Her every move seemed part of a dance, a choreographed routine she’d performed for years. He noted every detail as her fingers worked those buckles. Nails trimmed short. A web of pale, thin scars marked the brown skin of her hands, badges earned in the mastery of all those blades.

She was a fierce sparring partner who would seize the tactical advantage. A clever and competent student and a serious young woman whose beauty drew the eye, he admired everything about her. She embodied much more than he ever aspired to be.

He could not have been more proud.

He wanted to tell her the news, but a lump swelled in his throat. Revealing the news would bring his tears. He had to master his emotion first. He’d been tough on her. Couldn’t ruin that now and risk her remembering him as a sniveling fool.

Still, he’d have to say those words soon. Too soon. But not yet.

She gave him the once over in a glance. “You going empty-handed?”

On a normal night, he’d already have his sword on his belt and daggers on his hips. But he didn’t need gear tonight.

His stomach churned. Each minute brought him closer to their parting. He didn’t know what zone she’d get, but it was possible he’d never see her again. Every second felt precious. More so because she didn’t know what awaited her tonight. She didn’t have to carry the weight of their inevitable goodbye. For now, he carried the bittersweet burden for her.

You need her far more than she ever needed you.

Every healthy thing in his life stemmed from her. Not just the training routine or emphasis on nutrition. He gained stability from being her teacher. Pushing her physical abilities to ever-better levels required him to be engaged and sharp. And it kept old weaknesses at bay. With her, he achieved his best self.

Still, the need to atone for mistakes of the past haunted him.

His highest, best hope for her entailed a successful future that justified what had been taken from her. She’d had a family. He hadn’t been so lucky.

She slid daggers into the wrist sheaths and retrieved her short jacket from the peg by the door. As the coat settled on her shoulders, the costume jewels of the collar pin sparkled in the light. Andrei grimaced and the knot in his gut twisted tighter.

He’d given her the decorative lapel dagger on her sixteenth birthday. Just over three years ago. That night should have been a happy memory. Instead, an unforgettable trauma etched into his mind.

That night she’d touched him. The child he raised had declared herself a woman and offered herself to him.

He’d refused her. Morally, ethically, it was his only option. He was the only man in her life. She had a teenage crush. It was understandable. Predictable, even.

But it wasn’t easily dismissed.

Disgusted with himself at how quickly he’d grown hard under her hand, all his self-loathing coiled into his throat as he rejected her. His tone had been harsh and critical, bursting with his need to prevent her from ever tempting him again.

In hindsight, he’d been too forceful. Bullish, even. Her defeated expression and posture told him his words had landed like fists. He fled from her room praying he hadn’t done the one thing he never meant to do: break her will.

Jovienne proved too resilient to break, but the incident cost them. Their closeness evaporated. A rift opened, impossible to bridge. The pin on her lapel became a jeweled reminder of the day they destroyed their sense of family. All that remained was teacher and student.

As it should have been all along.

A new ferocity developed in her training regimen afterward. As if she’d discarded secret feelings that had held her back. Or she’d developed new emotional armor.

Either way, it would serve her well in the future. Starting tonight.

 

 

Heretic’s Penance 
The Immanence Series
Book Two
Linda Robertson Reinhardt

Genre: Dark Fantasy
Publisher: Igni House Publishing
Date of Publication: November 14, 2022
ISBN:   9781685440084   
Number of pages:   440
Word Count: 99,000
Cover Artist: Linda Robertson Reinhardt

Book Description: 

Jovienne and Andrei face a new battle —each other. Andrei has embraced an ultra-religious mindset and sees her magical power heresy. Jovienne feels so persecuted at home she leaves. She wants to build a new life, yet the Call continues. 

Whenever a demon arrives, she must slay it.

Not all of the demons seem evil, though, and she struggles with the work. Worse, Lucifer still wants her for her strange abilities. She turns to a local occult shop for help understanding her power. Too late, she learns she’s put them in serious danger.

Amazon     

Excerpt Book Two:

Jovienne pointed at him, hand trembling with anger. “Don’t blame me for what you lost. I begged you to leave. You stayed. Like you said, choices have consequences.”

“You don’t care what your evil witchcraft cost me, do you?”

Her mouth opened, but she wasn’t willing to voice her first thoughts. “I wish more than anything you would have left.” You wouldn’t have been in danger, and I wouldn’t have done what I did to save you. Her eyes burned. Unwilling to cry in front of him, she left.

Even without the boots, her heels thudded on the cracked linoleum.

“Jovienne,” Andrei called.

Ms. Davis, the neighbor downstairs, thumped her ceiling at the noise.

Jovienne didn’t care. She stomped down the hall and slammed her door. In her darkened bedroom, she stared out the front bay window.

Moving back in was stupid. I was naïve to think we could avoid this fight.

She fought both the tears and the scream building in her throat by concentrating on the lights beyond the glass and measuring her breaths.

Andrei flung open her door without knocking.

She spun.

His face contorted and he twisted and smacked the switch up. Harsh light filled the room.

He remained silent a beat longer than she expected.

“You’re an angel now. You can’t act like a spiteful child.”

His expression and tone conveyed calm, but the flush in his face and his white-knuckled hand on the doorknob said otherwise. His dominant pose declared his control of the room.

But she saw he didn’t have control of himself.

She activated the quickening to give herself an extra moment to think.

He’d always been a firm teacher. When she first started besting him in sparring matches, he resorted to taunting her to make her lose her temper. She’d seen right through the bully tactics.

He’d done the same thing in the kitchen, but this time they weren’t physically sparring.

She’d fallen for it and let him use her emotional investment against her.

Though he blocked the doorway with his body, he was not a threat. Not physically. But his beliefs were. He didn’t care if she was a slave. Worse, he felt the servitude was an honor.

She released the quickening and sank onto the bed, staring at the floor between them. Her throat remained tight from her unvoiced scream and when she spoke, it hurt. “Moving back in seemed like a great idea.” She looked up. “Last night, I thought we were on common ground.

But today you’re acting as if you expect to pick up right where we left off.”

His brows knit. “Aren’t we?”

“You’re not my teacher anymore, Andrei. And you never were my father.”

His shoulders sagged. He released the doorknob and raked fingers through his hair.

“You’re right.” The words stood for but a second before he straightened and hurried on. “If I hadn’t failed to nurture your spiritual path—”

“Stop.”

“—if I had only—”

“Stop!”

Andrei winced, then clamped his jaw.

She stood. “There are two things you need to get through your head right now. One, I cannot forget what I learned from you or what I learned from my gramma. Not even if I wanted to. And two, you don’t get to instruct me anymore. If you have an opinion about what I should think or do or how I should live my life, you will keep it to yourself.”



Martyr     
The Immanence Series
Book Three
Linda Robertson Reinhardt

Genre: Dark Fantasy
Publisher: Igni House Publishing
Date of Publication: Nov 28, 2022   
ISBN:   9781685440091
Number of pages:  635
Word Count: 148,000 
Cover Artist: Linda Robertson Reinhardt

Series Tagline: A renegade angel once changed human society forever… now a new angel will change it again.   

Book Description: 

Jovienne’s quest to understand her power and claim her freedom leads to a shocking discovery--one that will shake the foundations of modern society and sends her straight to Hell.

Bewitching Excerpt: Martyr

Jovienne found a box of Jade Oolong tea, filled the kettle, and set on the burner.

Samedi sauntered to the doorway and leaned on the far side of the casing. He blew a puff of smoke and watched her. He’d put the cane away again.

“So, Trouble, do you have any fuckin’ idea what you did back there?”

The nickname couldn’t compare with Black Diamond Woman, but it didn’t entirely displease her. “Without dirt under my feet, I had to draw on the electricity somehow. So I pulled it straight from the wires.” 

He shook his head and laughed softly. “The fuck you did.”

Offended, she leaned on the counter.

“Are you not going to ask me what you did do?”

“If you have something helpful to add, by all means, say it so I can decide if I believe you.”

He touched his chest as if wounded. “I’m trying to help you.”

“Really?” She crossed her arms. “Sitting back and judging seems more your style.”

“Like you’re doing now?”

“You’re not denying it.”

“Neither are you.”

She arched a brow.

Samedi gave her a judgmental once over. “My ‘style’ is malleable,” he said, “adjusting to fit the moment, but fuck you just the same for being a rude bitch.”

Jovienne had learned a lot from spirited chats with Andrei and Eitan and Araxiel. She sensed no threat from Samedi, but saw an amused gleam, and perhaps a playful challenge, in his eyes. It reminded her of the first time she met Araxiel.

“Maybe you should start over, because from where I stand, you’re the rude bitch. You’re acting superior, hoping I’ll change my demands. Or forget them. But I won’t.” She nodded toward the other room where Nathan sat. “What happened at the morgue just threw a lot of responsibility on my shoulders.”

“I’m relieved as fuck to hear you understand the gravity of the situation.” Samedi shifted to lean on the closer side of the doorway. “I see why you think you rerouted electricity to power your magic, but it only proves you don’t know shit about electricity.”

“Demon slaying doesn’t usually involve—” She stopped. In the last week, very little lined up with what she’d trained for. Giving him her back, she opened the cupboard and searched for a coffee cup. “Electricity wasn’t in the curriculum.”

“Of course not. An abhadhon isn’t supposed to have what you have.”

“A nephilim bloodline. Yeah. I know.” She chose a Shang-Chi mug and dropped the tea bag in.

You shouldn’t be an abhadhon.”

“I didn’t ask for it.” She pushed the mug closer to the kettle then recrossed her arms. “Again, if you have something helpful to add, say it.”

His gaze flitted from the kettle to the mug and on to the floor as he considered. She waited. Finally, his eyes found hers. “You wouldn’t compare a nine-volt battery to a nuclear power plant because you understand enough to know that would be a fuckin’ stupid thing to say. Yet you called the power electricity. That tells me you’re ignorant.”

She turned away.

Samedi grabbed her arm and jerked her back. “That’s not an insult. It’s truth. The only remedy for ignorance is learning, so put your ego aside and let me teach you something.”

Jovienne pointedly glanced at his hand on her arm. He released her.

“Your mind made the leap straight to Frankenstein,” he said. “I get why,but forget that shit. Electricity and lightning can’t bring long-dead people back to fuckin’ life. You didn’t pull electricity from the transformers down the street. That power is crude, small, and rudimentary. It wouldn’t want to go through you.”

“Why not?”

“You aren’t negative.”

“I could introduce you to someone who’d say you’re wrong.”

“And I may well agree with them, but I’m talking about polarity, not attitude.”

The water boiled. She lifted the kettle and poured into the mug.

Samedi leaned on the doorway casing again. “Every switch has a ground wire—literally a wire that runs into the fuckin’ ground. Positive electrical charge is attracted to negative electrical charge, so any excess of positive follows the wire down and disburses into the ground.”

“Are you saying I reconnected the disbursed energy and brought it up?”

“No. I’m saying you couldn’t have used electricity because it doesn’t exist in the place you drew from.”

“If not electricity what was it?” She raised and lowered the tea bag by the string, glad for something to do with her hands. “Ley energy?”

“Fuck no.” The note of his voice dropped. “This came from a place deeper down.”

She lowered the bag slowly and let the string go. “How deep?”

“Add some sugar. It will do him good.”

“How deep?”

“Take him the tea. Then we continue.”

Jovienne let the tea steep while she searched for the sugar. Finding nothing but a few pink packets of Sweet-n-Low, she waggled them at Samedi.

“It’ll do.”

She finished preparing the tea and took it to Nathan. After passing it to him, she straightened. Samedi halted close behind her. “What?”

“Knowing without understanding has made you hard. And dangerous.” He offered his hand. “Are you ready?”

            “To what?”

“To understand.” The vortex opened behind him.

She’d demanded to talk to the Angel of Death. Looked like he was going to let her.

 


About the Author:

Linda Robertson Reinhardt is an internationally published novelist and her short stories have appeared in several anthologies. In 2022, she released The Immanence Series, a dark fantasy trilogy for which she created the covers and all the interior artwork. A life-long musician, she’s also an award-winning composer, so it’s no surprise she also wrote and produced a 72-minute original orchestral score to accompany the new books. She has even scored a few short, independent films. Her music is available on most streaming channels. She is also a graphic artist and a painter, and her artwork is available through Redbubble. If that’s not enough, she makes jewelry and hand-blends/hand-bottles fragrances that she sells on her Etsy store. A mother of four boys, Linda is married and lives in Ohio.

 







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Monday, January 2, 2023

Witch of the Black Circle by Maria DeVivo



Witch of the Black Circle
Dawn of the Blood Witch
Book One
Maria DeVivo

Genre: Horror
Publisher: 4 Horsemen Publications
Date of Publication: March 7, 2022
ASIN: B09NB1G11Y
Number of pages: 217
Word Count: 64k

Cover Artist:

Tagline: When it comes to witchcraft, it's never just a teenage phase...

Book Description: 

For as long as she can remember, high school senior Joephie Turner's mother has told her she is cursed by a witch. As she settles into her new hometown of Northport, Long Island at the height of the 1980s Satanic Panic era, Joephie is accepted into a circle of friends obsessed with the occult. Demonic messages on cassette tapes, shady youth group leaders, and passionate sexual encounters push the teen into a thrilling world that lends a deeper meaning to the proverbial mantra: "sex, drugs, and rock and roll." Until it all goes wrong.

A decade later, haunted by nightmares of cults and rituals, formidable burgeoning witch Joephie pieces her memories together in search of answers about the small group of suburban teens that meddled with dark forces. As an adult, Joephie will have to decide what, or who, she is willing to sacrifice from her past in order to claw her way back to sanity.

Inspired by true events, Witch of the Black Circle is a deliciously wicked and nostalgic journey through time where the lines of reality and the supernatural blur. Content warning: satanic rituals; sex; graphic violence; language; drug use


Excerpt

Dan reaches over to his bag and pulls out his math book. In the front pouch, I notice a small novel with a black cover. “Hey,” I say, nodding my head in the backpack’s direction. “Whatcha reading?”

“Uh, nothing,” he answers, shrugging his shoulders.
I put out my arms and tap my fingers together like a baby grasping at something. “Lemme see it!”

“Nah. It’s really nothing,” he repeats, but he’s unconvincing, and it makes my curiosity burn a hole in my brain.

Kit’s curiosity is piqued as well, so she stands up and moves behind the chair with the backpack. “Now, now,” she sings. “No secrets here, Dan!” She grabs the bag from the chair and pulls out the book. “The Satanic Bible?”

Dan quickly shoots up from the chair, snatches the book away from her, and cradles it to his chest as to hide the cover from us. “Shhhh…” he admonishes as he looks side to side, assessing if my mother was in the vicinity or not.

I hold out my hand again. “What are you reading that for?” I ask. “Give it here.”

Reluctantly, he turns the book over to me, and I examine the cover, the spine, and the back like an investigator studying a piece of crime-scene evidence. Only, I don’t have on rubber gloves. I’ve known about this book. Heard about it. Knew the story of the author, Dr. Anton LaVey, and his Church of Satan. Practically, every youth ministry I had attended had mentioned the evil of this piece of literature at some point in time: If you even look at the book, you can be possessed. Being in its presence alone can have a profound effect on your heavenly soul. Dare not open or read the pages for fear of infiltration by a powerful demonic force. But as I actually hold the book for the first time in my life, I feel … nothing. No fear. No wonder. No spooky taboo. I press the book in my palms trying to feel for any ‘other-worldly’ vibrations or indication that if I open it up I will be damned to hell. But no. Nothing. Zip. Zilch. And more lies and deception from my past teachers come into clear view. “Dude. It’s just a book.”

“Yeah, I know it’s just a book,” he huffs, grabs it from me, and shoves it back into his bag.

The three of us sit back down in silence for a few minutes.

“You okay, man?” Kit asks, concerned.

“Yeah. Fine.”

Clearly, he’s not.

“Where’d you get it?” I ask.

“Why’d you get it?” Kit emphasizes.

Dan looks behind him and scans the kitchen again. Then, he moves his upper body slightly across the table as if to beckon me and Kit to huddle in. We oblige him and he speaks in a soft, hushed tone: “Thomas. This guy from my school. He got the connection with that Ricky kid and the Knights of the Black Circle.”

“The Knights of the Black Circle?” I ask. “What’s that?”

Dan glares at me and holds up his arm revealing the faded black circles drawn up and down his arm, over and over and over. I had thought they were just silly drawings borne out of boredom, but…

 “They wanted him to read the book and know some stuff before they accepted him,” he continues. “Thomas said he could probably get me in, too, and told me what passages to study and shit.”

Kit’s pretty eyes widen, and her bangs touch her eyelashes again. “He knows the Acid King?”

A sneer forms on Dan’s lips and he nods. “Uh huh.”

“Wait,” I protest. “What are you talking about? Who are the Knights of the Black Circle?

What’s an Acid King?”

“The Knights…” Dan explains, “they’re a group. Local. They do stuff. They know stuff.”

 


About the Author:

Maria is the Author of the Amazon bestselling and award winning series The Coal Elf Chronicles, the YA psychological horror series The Altered Experience, and the NA Urban Fantasy series The Aestrangel Trinity. 

When not writing about dark fantasy and horror, she teaches Language Arts and Journalism to middle school students in Florida. A lover of all things dark and demented, she takes pleasure in warping the comfort factor in her readers’ minds. Just when you think you’ve reached a safe space in her stories, she snaps you back into her twisted reality.














Monday, December 26, 2022

Intimate Escape by DC Stone



Intimate Escape
Empire Blue Series
Book Four
DC Stone

Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Date of Publication: 11/29/22
ASIN: B0BLL64YJS
Number of pages: 250
Word Count: 76,000

Cover Artist: Evernight Publishing

Book Description:

Juliette Scaglione doesn't think her world can get any worse. Recently dumped by her longtime boyfriend while on a vacation she paid for, she returned home only to find the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) on her heels.

DEA Agent Matt Gonzalez is sent on a task to uncover a mule at the airport, one he discovers is a feisty and beautiful woman whom he can't take his eyes off of.

Problem is, things get out of control for both fairly quickly as they are kidnapped by the cartel and taken to a prison in Mexico. The two have to learn how to rely on one another to escape the clutches of this violent operation. Through their journey across a country far from home, both of them recognize fighting their attraction may not be the only challenge they have to face.


Amazon      BN


Excerpt:

“What do you expect to find in my bags?” she asked.

Agent Gonzalez stared at her, and rather than answer what she thought was a pretty logical question, he threw another softball. “I’ll ask you one more time. Do you give your consent to allow us to search your bags? I’m warning you now that I have a federal judge on standby in the event you say no, so one way or another, I will search these bags today. It’s just a matter of whether this will go quickly or take a few hours. Up to you.”

Her heart pounded against the inside of her chest, wanting to run away. She felt much the same way. Not that she thought he’d find anything. It was the absolute certainty she saw on his face that said he knew he’d find something.

“What’s going on?” she asked, hating the meek sound in her voice.

“Juliette—”

“Yes! Yes, you can search my bags, my—my body, but you won’t find anything in, or rather, on them.”

 Agent Gonzalez unzipped her suitcase.

“After you find nothing, I expect an explanation for what’s going on.” There, that sounded firm. Not shaky, like what her insides were doing.

Agent Watson relieved her of her backpack and purse but placed them on the table and didn’t go through them. Instead, he kept his attention on what Agent Gonzalez was doing, though she knew without a doubt she had his full attention too.

Gonzalez removed her clothing in a systematic fashion, placing items one at a time on the table next to the suitcase. Out came her dirty clothes, which lay on top, jeans, dresses, and her underwear. Her cheeks heated as he continued, his movements slow and thorough.

He got to the bottom, having removed everything from within. Her things were scattered across the table like some bizarre game of Clue.

“See?” she said. “Nothing.”

Agent Watson didn’t move, but Gonzalez sure did. He reached inside her suitcase and felt around the corners, then yanked. The sound of fabric tore.

“Hey! What are you doing?” He tossed the fabric aside, and black plastic square packages were stacked inside in a neat and orderly fashion. Had to be about a dozen of them, at least five to six inches in width.

Shock rooted her to the spot for a few moments. “Wait. What is that?” she asked and took a step forward.

Watson held up a hand in front of her. “Ma’am, please stay back.”

“What is that?” she asked him again, hearing the rising hysteria in her voice.

Gonzalez pulled out one package and produced a pocketknife from somewhere, then cut into the wrapping. Everything around her moved in slow motion until she swore the world had ceased to spin. Her attention stayed riveted to the white powder that came out on the shiny blade.

“Gonna need a test kit,” he said to Watson. The other agent immediately set the bags beside the table, at the farthest reach from her, and left the room.

“Agent Gonzalez,” she said, sounding like she pleaded, because she did. She’d never seen that stuff before in her life. “That’s not mine. What’s going on?”

He pulled out twelve packages, and yes, she counted every single one, before grabbing another black trash bag that someone had taped to the inside of her luggage frame. Once he opened that, several brown baggies came tumbling out. She gasped.

No wonder her bag had been so heavy.

Only then, after the whole horrid nightmare was laid out on the table, all the ugliness next to her things, her clothes, and her bag of toiletries, did he look up at her. “Ms. Scaglione,” he said, reverting to formalities, “the intel we received was there would be someone on your plane, matching your description and carrying a suitcase with over ten kilos of cocaine and about a hundred baggies of heroin. Although I haven’t tested it yet, I can tell you I’d bet my next paycheck that’s what is right here.”

“But it’s not mine.” Dryness coated the inside of her mouth, as if cotton balls had been shoved inside and sucked up all the moisture.

“Are those your clothes?” he asked.

She nodded.

“This your bag?” She nodded, getting where he headed. “Yes, but those drugs are not mine!”

“Of course, they aren’t.” But he said the words as if he didn’t believe her.

“They aren’t!” she yelled.

He slammed his hands on the table and leaned toward her.

About the Author:

D.C. “Desi” Stone is a best-selling romance author and full-time fraud investigator. She lives in the northeast with her incredibly supporting husband, two kids, a cat, and the ever-growing family of dogs. 

After serving eight years of service with the United States Air Force, she went on to transition into the world of financial crimes and became a lead investigator for many years.

Reading has always been a passion of hers, getting lost in a good, steamy romance is one of her favorite past times. She soon after discovered her own love for writing and recreating stories and characters in her head. Her writing concentrates on romantic with specifics in paranormal, suspense, and erotica.

Now, when she isn’t trying to solve a new puzzle in the world of fraud, she is engulfed with coffee, her laptop, and all those crazy characters in her head. She is a member of the Romance Writers of America, Hudson Valley Romance Writers, New Jersey Romance Writers, RomVets, RWA Kiss of Death, and the Liberty State Fiction Writers. She served as the 2014 NJRW Vice President and Conference Chair. Come stop by on Facebook, Twitter, or her website and say hello!












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