I will continue to update this post as the book goes live at various retailers.
Update: Blood Will Tell is now available at All Romance Ebooks! (Formats include ePub, Mobi, Pdf and Lit)
You can also find it at Amazon.
Now available at Smashwords.
Blood Will Tell has also gone live at Kobo and at Barnes and Noble.
Part 3 of Her Billionaire, Her Wolf:
A brother, long believed dead, comes within a sword’s stroke of fratricide in a dark dungeon. He is a man driven by tragedy, yet family ties are not strong enough to sway him from his endless hunt.
A lonely woman learns what it is to truly submit to the will of her master. In faith and desperation, she gives of herself freely not knowing that a demon from her past has been resurrected and given the means to find her once again.
A wolf is forced to confront the curse that hounds him without ceasing night and day. In a voice of dust and ashes, the answer he is given is one of merciless, wicked betrayal.
And vampires flock to the call of a monster and its sinister machinations. Like a twisted puppet master, it shall decide the fates of one and all.
The man stood there, his hands upon his hips and watched as she swung slowly in the air.
Her feet did not quite reach to the straw covered floor, and he noticed with disgust that there was urine dripping from one of her big toes.
There was a large drop that slowly grew larger, pregnant even and faintly yellow, before the pendulum of the woman’s motion forced it to fall and lose itself among the floorboards sprinkled over with straw.
That had been his idea. A good idea. So much easier to clean up afterward.
And, even bloody straw burns with enough gasoline thrown on it. He supposed the same would hold true for pissed on straw, too.
The man lifted his arms only to feel his pants start to slip down. It was because he was no longer wearing his belt and the standard issue beige pants did not fit him the way they should have.
Nothing ever fit him the way it should have.
Not the boring job that droned on day after day, never anything worth noting in his little flip open notebook. Not in the long night hours when he patrolled from one end of the county to the other, always favoring desolate back roads.
One never knew when someone alone and in need of protection would present themselves.
Except that they never fit, either.
On a whim, his aimless wandering this past evening had taken him down the road running not far from a local bar…a sort of club. The kind of place kept to the boonies because town folk, respectable folk, would not have it in the city limits. Just close enough to keep it on the municipal tax registers, but far enough away to keep their consciences clear.
It had been very late, or very early, depending on how one looked at it, and the man had spied her stumbling, alone, along the shoulder of the road not far away.
Her skirt had been far too short. Her color far too high. And her confidence in a uniformed man far too trusting.
She had laughed at his pleasantries as they rolled through the night and it took her a long while to notice that he was not taking her into town.
It did not matter, though. She had trusted a familiar face. A good old, local boy that would see a lady home, safe and sound.
He chuckled, then stooped to retrieve his belt. It was lying at his feet and as he picked it up, he noticed that the buckle was strangely thicker than it should have been.
He turned it in the dim moonlight trying to get a better look.
It was crusted in blood, and in places, there was hair stuck to the heavy metal buckle.
But, he had given her a real lesson. That was for sure. Drunken slut had it coming.
It had only been a couple months since he had first taken it to the next level. And for that he blamed her. She had run off one evening while he was hard at work doing all he could to put bread on the table and keep the bill collectors away from their front door.
Miserable, ungrateful bitches. Every one of them.
Never a good fit for him.
That first time, he had been scared, real scared. It was only a few days after she up and took off before he found himself standing in exactly the same place, looking down at the exact same belt.
Then, he had remembered the old well back behind the barn. The one his father had forbidden him when he was just a kid. The well that had been the source of inspiration for a lesson directed at a seven year old who had dared to go look in that well anyway.
That particular lesson had kept him out of school for nearly a month before his father would let him go back. Before the black and blue welts had faded enough.
Now that old forbidden well was home to a few drunken sluts who had had their own lessons.
Hard lessons. But, necessary.
The man sighed. There was work to do before the night was over.
An old pair of overalls was tucked into a corner of the old barn and as he turned to get them, he heard a sound.
Someone was clapping their hands. Softly at first, then louder and louder. Until the racket of the sound must have left those hands burning like fire for as loud as the applause was.
He froze, listening, then began to easing down into a crouch. His service revolver was lying on the floor, in its holster, just beside where his belt had been.
Then, someone spoke.
“That…was…mahvelouuuus,” said the voice in a drawn out, exaggerated ringmaster’s way.
“No. Truly. Rarely have I been witness to such a spectacle.”
There was the sound of sliding steps coming toward him. Someone who sounded as though they were limping.
“In fact, you have given me such new hope in the potential of mankind, dear sir…”
Pinstriped pants shifted in the shadows and the man had his target. He just needed to get both hands on the holster and flip the leather safety strap clear.
“…that I can only applaud with the admiration I have for your work. Well done, sir…well done, indeed.”
Pale hands slipped in and out of a shaft of moonlight that filtered down through a roof in dire need of repair. They came together and clapped with a hollow, dead sound while the owner of the voice’s face remained hidden.
The holster was in his hands, forgotten, as he registered the words in the darkness.
Appreciation for his work….
The man cleared his throat and said, “And who in the hell are you?”
He hoped he sounded authoritative. He wanted to sound that way…very much.
There was faint laughter. Then, the voice said, “Why I am he who will point the way to your wayward girl, Deputy Woodard.”
Jackson’s throat went dry, but he managed to croak out, “What do you know about that?”
A derby hat appeared in the pale hands and began to twirl. The old fashioned thing spun between long fingered hands in a whirl that quickly became a dark blur. The movement was stunning and fascinating all at once and soon the man could not look away.
“I know everything, Deputy,” said the voice as it took a shambling step forward, “And I’m here to explain it to you.”
Moonlight ran up its body and Deputy Jackson Woodard was frozen like a deer in the headlights. The thing stepped free of the darkness and all Jackson wanted was for it to go back in….way back in.
His face seized tight as muscles readied themselves to wrap around a scream meant to wake the dead. But, the sound was a stillborn thing and all that slipped from between the man’s lips was a thin line of saliva tracking down his chin.
His pupils were blown wide and black. What his father would have called two piss holes in a snow bank.
“That’s right, Jacky boy. The Journeyman has come to tell you a tale about your darling Sara.”
The man did not move, then whimpered in the darkness, “Please, Papa…don’t hurt me….”
The Journeyman laughed at the man upon his knees before him.
“Oh, but I will, Jacky. I will hurt you. Sooooo, tell me…”
The thing set the derby hat upon Jackson’s head, then gave it a light tap to settle it in place.
“…who’s your daddy now?”
Sara looked down to the arms that encircled her. Hard, like iron, they held her in a grasp that seemed to promise they would never let go. They spoke of security as her lover bent to take her earlobe between his lips.
He tugged back, then released her before moving lower, along her neckline, searching for more of her to savor.
She slipped her fingers into the grooves of his knuckles, following the hills and valleys of his hand. Her own seemed so small and pale by comparison. With his under hers, her hand looked like that of a child.
Raised veins ran like branches of a tree under her fingertips, and Sara knew that the man who held her was as strong as an oak, as unyielding as steel.
She also knew this because she had seen the fangs lining his mouth as these same powerful hands had become enormous black paws. The beast within him had shown itself in all its indomitable power and was the perfect mirror of the enigmatic man. Possessed of secrets that went far beyond the impossible, this was a man with one foot firmly in the realm of myth and legend.
And it was her that he held in his powerful arms as he bent to gently kiss her bare shoulder.
Sara smiled even though she knew he could not see her. Like giant balls of cotton, white clouds rolled by the rounded window of the bedroom cabin as his personal jet carried them towards another continent. For some reason, they reminded her of cotton candy.
“I like flying,” she said, then sighed as she felt his teeth upon her skin.
“And I like biting,” he replied before returning to her shoulder, nipping along its outline before he shifted his grip and took her hand in his own.
He brought it to his face, then turned her hand so that the palm faced him. Then, he held his lips to the few lines running across its surface, kissing her like a gentleman would a fair lady.
She felt ridiculous, but loved that he did it all the same.
“I want you, Sara.”
They turned to face one another. Fingers interlaced as hungry lips did the same. Warm tongues flickered in a humid dance before they were falling back upon the bed with sweat breaking upon their bodies….