Welcome to the Weird, the Wild, & the Wicked for a new year, literally, of Mid Week Tease hosted by Sandra Bunino.
Authors: this is a great opportunity to spotlight a few lines or even a paragraph or two from a new release or backlisted title. Readers: you get to sample some delicious snippets! We’ll do our best to tease, titillate and tantalize you into the weekend.
Today I'm offering snippets from my upcoming release A Walk in the Sand, an action/adventure sci-fi/fantasy with romantic elements, and Book 1 in the The Ivory Road serial. Iliana Rory is just trying to have a vacation from her life as a Hollywood actress. She never intended on having to deal with her upcoming costar or stepping in to alternate universes. This is into the second chapter, to read a snippet earlier in the tale, click HERE.
“You're not going to stop playing, are you, Mr. Crowe?” Iliana shook her head. “Fine. Play your little game, but I’m done. I don't need this and I'm outta here.” She swung onto the gray horse and settled her weight in the stirrup-less saddle. She turned the animal’s head toward a gap in the trees and urged the horse into a trot.
“By all the Gods!” he shouted in frustration at her back.
“I told you women were faithless.”
Ahmad’s voice made her fury burn brighter, but she’d dealt with trolls in Hollywood. This guy was only a run-of-the-mill heckler. The gray horse lengthened its strides as they passed the edge of the oasis, and she did her best to ignore the corpse, still lying in the glaring sun. If it really is a dead body and not a dummy.
She stopped the horse and tried to decide which way to go. All directions looked pretty much the same. Well done, now you’re out here alone with no idea which direction is west. At least she now had a horse. Iliana glanced down to the sand below to try to determine which way their shadow pointed. She frowned. Had she gotten here in the morning or afternoon?
“I don’t think he’s accustomed to being spoken to like that.”
She froze and looked around. No one stood near her. She sat alone on the horse.
The horse huffed an indignant sigh and turned his head to eye her.
Iliana swallowed hard. “Did you say something?”
“Yes, I said, I don't think he’s accustomed to being spoken to like that.”
The voice echoed in her ears, but the horse’s lips had remained still. That’s it. I’ve gotten sunstroke. “I’m going crazy.”
“That remains to be seen, but we’re still having this conversation anyway.” The gray snorted and tossed his head.
“Is this some sort of cosmic joke? Horses can’t talk.” She snapped her mouth shut and shook her head. “And now I’m arguing with an animal.”
“Only because you can’t seem to accept I can speak, and well enough for you to understand, young lady.”
Iliana scrubbed her hands over her face. “No, no, no. This isn’t possible. There is no magic in the world except what Hollywood conjures. I must be dreaming this. I’m on a solo hike in New Mexico, minding my own business. This is just a dream from sun-stroke…” She glanced around uncertainly. “Except the sand is golden and Taggart Crowe has shown up.”
“The man you left behind is named Brandon Crowe and you’re in the Karobis Desert, which is in the country of Knalland.” The horse stretched a leg forward and rubbed the side of his muzzle against his knee. “The continent on which this desert stretches is called Absentia.”
A Walk in the Sand comes out February 23, 2015.
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