Monthly Archives: December 2015

AND WE’RE WALKING…

Another year over…a new one just begun.

New years. A time of reflection, or making changes. And let’s not forget the dreaded resolutions. And it seems with every new year, there are so many resolutions that could be made. Things you want to change. Hell, I have a laundry list of things I’d love to be different. In fact, in 2015, I can honestly say I took positive steps forward. Made the kind of changes I thought would last. Some did, but most… let’s just say that as October rolled in, all those good intentions, those positive steps seemed to falter.

But dwelling on the past, on faltering—that doesn’t help. Actually, it hinders those positive steps forward. So… let’s just say that there were some successes in 2015, and I plan on carrying forward on those. And making more. Which brings me to the topic… goals for 2016.

I like that. Goals instead of resolutions. Because goals you strive towards. Where the journey’s just as important as the destination. Where each step is part of the success. And, now, I sound like a damn fortune cookie. So… goals for 2016.

First, writing.

While I’d love to say my goal is to write a book a month… that’s a pretty hefty one. And it tends to lead to burnout. A more attainable goal? To write. Everyday. (minus obvious days off, lol.) But… I need to make it a priority. And find some kind of balance. So daily writing. Whether it’s a few thousand words or just a page…it all counts. Adds up. And to remember that I love writing.

So that’s another one. To write what I love. To not worry about if there’s something I should write, and get back to writing the stories echoing inside my head. The ones that won’t stop screaming at me. Because that’s the secret.

Cover art.

It’s going well, actually. And I need to keep the momentum up. Keep learning and keep trying to expand, because it’s another love of mine. The big accomplishment is again, finding balance. I get can so caught up playing around with images, I lose track of time. Completely.

Health

Without going into great detail about my body issues and insecurities… and yeah, I have a laundry list of those, as well…anyway, going old school. Weights. Running for the love of it. And riding…a lot more mountain bike riding. I really want to be comfortable doing damn near any black diamond out there. I have a plan… but… that’s a whole other post.

Blogging

I have to say, while I’ve fallen off a bit in the last couple of months, overall, 2015 was a good year in this respect. I went from rarely blogging to weekly, and sometimes twice a week. Only missed one flash fiction all year. So…yeah, a big win in that department. Which means the goal is to keep it up.

Accountability

So… in an effort to keep on track—another positive step—I’m going to start blogging. Weekly. Now it might just be a short few lines, what I’ve written, made and how the workout program is going, but…knowing I have to write it all down. Yeah, for me that’s a big motivator.

I’m sure there are more goals out there. I haven’t even touched on the whole, love life thing…or lack there of. I’m hoping that my mindset in 2016 will be better. And it’ll stay that way. Not sure what else to touch on, though. My life’s boring. Maybe that’ll be a goal. Come up with some more adventurous goals for 2017. While I’m thinking, go visit the other ladies. I’m sure they have way cooler goals…

Bronwyn Green  |  Jessica De La Rosa  |  Paige Prince

Jessica Jarman  |  Kayleigh Jones  |  Gwendolyn Cease

 

FULL OF GRACE ~ SONG FLASH FICTION

Wow…less than a week until Christmas. And I’m at a hockey tournament this entire weekend and Monday. Which means I’m writing this Sunday night. LATE. But… as it’s Sarah and she’s Canadian, I couldn’t bow out. And…I might have picked this one, so… Besides, the woman’s voice. Dear god, it’s angelic. Such a talented lady.

If you’re not familiar with the song, here you go… and here is the story inspired by a song.

 

“Tell me, Michael. How long are you going to stay here, avoiding him?”

Michael muttered under his breath before glancing over his shoulder. Gabriel leaned against a tree, his silhouette illuminated by a warm yellow glow reflecting off a pond, casting a long shadow across the soft grass. His grace shimmered around him—not quite as luminous as it’d once been. More of a muted fluorescence than the blinding light Michael knew surrounded him.

He looked back at the setting sun, watching the different shades of orange and yellow chase each other across the sky. “I think Kei’s love of fire has melted your brain, brother. You’re talking nonsense.”

Gabriel snorted. “Still in denial, I see.”

Michael huffed as the other angel moved in beside him, the man’s gaze taking in the colours staining the clouds. “There’s nothing to deny. I was just watching the sun set.”

“No, you were trying to catch a glimpse of Greyson as he headed out for his nightly check of the various portals dotted along the perimeter.” Gabriel sighed. “Ever since Uriel popped in for an uninvited visit, Grey’s been obsessively vigilant about security. Never seen the guy this diligent before. He’s more of a…playboy. Makes me wonder if he’s got ulterior motives for following such a strict, dare I say, predictable schedule.”

“I’m sure having an archangel lay waste to your homeland changes your priorities.”

Gabriel snickered. “I’ve known Grey for decades. Trust me. Not much gets to him. Which brings me back to my hypothesis that he’s not scouring the borderlands for the good of his people.”

“Why else would he spend all that time alone?”

“Maybe he’s hoping he won’t be alone for long.”

Michael released a weary breath, allowing his head to bow to his chest as his shoulders drooped. “Gabriel…”

“Why are you making this so difficult? I saw the way Grey looked at you. Not to mention the fact he finds a way to bring you up in damn near every conversation. And while I know the reasons for his people giving Kei and me a home here are pure, he doesn’t visit me as often as he does because he lacks for companionship. He’s hoping you’ll drop by.”

Michael glanced at him. “He tell you that?”

“Didn’t have to. The guy’s an open book. But what I find puzzling is why you come here then hide your presence from him.”

“It’s…complicated.”

Gabriel nudged him. “What’s so complicated? He likes you, you like him…”

“I’m an archangel.”

Gabriel laughed. “As am I.”

“You’re…different.”

“Why? Because I have a mate? Or because I’m not as pure as I used to be?”

“I didn’t mean…” Michael raked a hand through his hair. “What you and Kei have…it’s a bond very few of us will ever find. It makes you special.”

“I’m not special, brother. I just listened to my heart instead of all the reasons I shouldn’t let him in.”

“I’m a warrior.”

“So’s Grey.”

Michael threw up his hands, stomping away before spinning. “He’s a prince. Heir to the thrown. Hell, his father is practically a god.”

“And yours is.” Gabriel gave him a small smile. “The only difference between us, Michael, is that I wasn’t afraid to make myself vulnerable. To admit that there’s someone else who means more to me than…me.”

“I’m God’s warrior. I can’t put my own happiness, my needs, above those of his children.”

“If our Father didn’t want us to fall in love, we wouldn’t have fated mates lurking around, waiting for us to find them.”

Michael glanced across the pond as a man appeared on the far side. The fae paused, lifting his head to the sky before letting it fall to his chest as he trudged off. Even this far away, Michael knew it was Greyson. He could feel the other man’s soul beckoning to him like a beacon. Hear the echoed beat of Grey’s heart thrum in his head.

Gabriel cupped his shoulder. “Grey’s a good man. A worthy man.”

“He’s not a man, and I’m afraid I’m the one who isn’t worthy. If you and Kei hadn’t intervened, I’d be dead.”

“And if Kei hadn’t accidentally summoned me, so would I.”

“I don’t think it was an accident.”

“The point is, we all played a part. You saved us equally, I assure you.”

Michael shook his head. “All I did was look like a fool.”

“Michael—”

“I can’t ask Grey to give himself to me. Not when I know there are more than a few entities who’d love to use my feelings against me. He’d be a target.”

“And you think Kei isn’t?” Gabriel motioned to where Greyson had reappeared across the water, the flicking light of a fire wavering next to the fae. “Whether Grey wants to take the risk is his choice.”

“Not if he never knows how I feel.” Michael held up his hand, fighting the urge to simply take to the sky and join the other man on the opposite side of the water. “It’s better this way. Without me…he’ll be free to find someone who can give him what he needs.”

“All he needs is for you to let him in. To love him.”

“He’ll find someone else. Someone far more worthy than I.”

Gabriel grabbed his wrist when Michael turned to leave. “Faeries aren’t that different from us, Michael. He only has one true soul, as well.”

“Then it’s best I leave so he can find it.”

Michael ignored Gabriel’s call as he took off, heading for the portal back to his world. To where there was order. Peace. The sharp pain through his chest didn’t mean anything, least of all that he cared for the fae.

 

And that’s it. Just two other ladies joining in today. See you next month … 2016 baby.

Bronwyn Green  |   Paige Prince

5 WORDS OR LESS ~ DECEMBER

Halfway through December. I’m just starting my Christmas shopping. Funny how I vow to not procrastinate every year, yet, I do, lol. Baby steps. It can be part of my step forwards for next year. Less procrastination. Let’s see if I don’t put that one off, lol.

Anyway, 5 words or less is the topic. The last one for this year. I love these posts because I don’t have to write much. Anyway, this final one is… My past, my present…my future.

My Past,

Less adventurous than hoped.

My Present,

Chaotic, Always late, Pretty good

My Future

Optimistic, Positive steps, no self-sabotaging

 

Take that as you will. Now go check out the other ladies. Lots jumping on board this week.

Bronwyn Green  |  Jessica Jarman  |  Kellie St. James

Jessica De La Rosa  |  Paige Prince

A PICTURE SAYS A 1000 WORDS ~ DECEMBER

I honestly, and sincerely, can’t believe it’s December already. Wasn’t it just September? And don’t even start with me about how Christmas is like, what… a couple of weeks away. I can’t begin to say how unprepared I am. But I digress. So, it’s another flash fiction. I’ve missed a few, but trying to jump back in this week. Here’s the inspirational pic…and a tale spun from it.

12-2015 - LanternBooks

 

“Damn it, Zeke. It’s darker than ass in here.”

Zeke Reddings gave his buddy a punch in the arm. “Seriously, Declan? Drama queen, much?”

Zeke flicked a lighter, holding the tiny flame over the wick. The oil in the old lantern sputtered to life, casting a soft glow off the surrounding trees. Long finger-like shadows danced across the ground, moving with him as he started forward. A narrow path appeared amidst the swaying branches, the thin tunnel limiting his vision to only a few feet.

Declan followed behind him, one hand resting on his shoulder, matching his steps as they wove their way along the corridor. Coyotes yipped somewhere in the distance, the dim outline of a porch appearing out of the darkness. Zeke stumbled to a halt, tripping forward when Declan walked into him.

“Shit. A little head’s up would be appreciated, dude.” Declan shifted to Zeke’s side, his hand sliding down to rest on the small of Zeke’s back. “So…you sure this is the place?”

“Right. Because there are so many deserted cabins in the middle of the forest.”

Declan gave him a shove. “You don’t have to be an ass about it. We both know what’s in there. Might be wise to be absolutely sure.”

Zeke pulled out a compass, holding it in the small circle of light. The arrow spun clockwise before finally settling, the head pointing toward the doorway. An eerie blue glow illuminated the face then winked out.

Zeke arched a brow, glancing at the man—his true soul—as he motioned to the compass. “Proof enough for you?”

Declan sighed. “Is it wrong that I was secretly hoping we’d screwed up somewhere along the way? That this would be nothing more than an empty shack in the woods?” He chuckled, though it sounded forced. “A place to create a different kind of memory.”

Zeke palmed Declan’s chest, the steady beat of the man’s heart soothing his own fears. “Not wrong. And I wish we were here for that kind of encounter, too.” He glanced back at the door. “Can’t help but wonder what’s inside.”

Declan placed his hand over Zeke’s, squeezing Zeke’s fingers. “Guess there’s only one way to find out. I just hope that damn gypsy wasn’t shitting us. Hell of a long-ass way to come only to discover we’ve been played.”

“She gave us the damn compass on her death bed. Hell, these instructions were her dying words. I don’t think people make that kind of shit up for giggles.” He reached behind him, removing a silver blade from his pocket. He held up the shiny metal, watching the light glint off the edge. “But on the off-chance I’m wrong…”

“Silver? Really?”

Zeke huffed. “We know all too well that werewolves and faeries are real.”

“Yeah, and so is freaking bigfoot, but none of those are waiting inside.”

“We’re talking about the missing tomes of Atlantis. You think they won’t be guarded?”

Declan gave him a weary smile. “By wards. Barriers. Not creatures we can slay.”

“When’s the last time you shanked a werewolf, buddy? Because I’m pretty damn sure the answer is never.”

“I didn’t…” Declan raked a hand through his hair. “What I mean is…creatures can be killed. Spells…spells take skill. Knowledge. A certain breed of warrior.”

“My Enotian is pretty damn rusty.”

“Doesn’t matter. It’s our birth tongue. We’ll remember what we need.” He nodded toward the door. “You ready?”

Declan didn’t wait for Zeke to answer, choosing to climb the first step. He extended his hand, clasping Zeke’s fingers in his as they ascended the four stairs to the porch. A blue door gleamed in the lamplight, the silver handle shiny as if fuelled by some inner power. Zeke nodded when Declan reached for it, staying beside his lover as the other man twisted the knob. The hinges groaned in protest as the slab swung inward, revealing nothing but more shadows.

They crossed the threshold, not surprised when the door shut behind them on its own, locking out any hope of escape. Zeke held up the lantern, chasing away the darkness. Barren walls stared back at them, not a single piece of furniture within the walls.

“God damn it.” Declan took a couple of heavy steps inside. “It’s all empty.”

Zeke grabbed his arm, yanking him back to his side. “No. It’s warded to appear that way. Can’t you feel it?” He inhaled, the steady thrum of the energy field vibrating through his chest. “There’s a barrier.”

“Well, I’ll be damned. Guess my emotions are clouding my other senses.” He winked at Zeke. “Your fault, entirely. You’re far too much of a distraction.”

“Jackass.” Zeke handed Declan the lamp. “Guess it’s time to see how much I’ve forgotten.”

Zeke drew a deep breath, slowing reciting the words he hoped would counter the spell. Blue specks erupted in the darkness, cascading along an invisible plane until the entire width of the cabin had been joined by a thousand tiny pinpoints of light. Zeke repeated the chant, knowing it’d take three incantations to fully activate the ritual—each reading giving the sparks more energy until he had to shield his eyes against the glare. There was a moment of strumming power as the last word seemed to hang in the air before the barrier exploded in a hiss of fire, raining down crystallized light on the wooden floor.

Zeke waved his hand in the air, clearing the lingering hint of smoke before his breath simply stalled in his chest. A single table stood in the centre of the room, the top illuminated from some hidden source.

Declan slapped his chest, his face beaming with pride before he grabbed Zeke’s hand—leading them both over to the table. Three old, weathered books had been stacked on the surface, some of the pages already starting to curl along the edge. Declan placed the lantern off to one side as he leaned down, gently blowing off a layer of dust. A series of symbols adorned the cover of the top volume, the intricate patterns embossed into the leather.

Declan ran his fingers across the markings, glancing at Zeke. “Holy shit. You did it. You actually broke the enchantment.” He swallowed noisily, his rough breath sounding loud in the stillness. “Do you know what this means?”

“Easy, Dec, there’s no guarantee we’ll find what we’re looking for. That these books hold the answers we need. The maps.”

“Oh, they’re in here. I can feel it.” He shook his head, the tension easing from his shoulders. “After over a century stuck in the human realm, we actually have a chance at going—”

“Home.” Zeke gave the other man a genuine smile. “We might actually go home.”

 

And that’s all for me… now check out the other ladies. Always amazing to see what they create.

Bronwyn Green  |  Jessica Jarman  |  Jessica De La Rosa