Welcome to my blog. Here you'll find a diverse assortment of characters from all my stories. You'll meet brooding vampires, love-stricken ghosts, mystical guardians, deceptive demons, honor-bound lycans, sexy selkies, devilish aliens, brawny barbarians, as well as a few good old fashioned cowboys. So I invite you to grab a cup of something pipin' hot, pull up a chair, and get lost in my vivid imagination.
Many times writers incorporate personal experiences in their writing. The action just before the excerpt (below) was Kari’s pickup careening down a dangerous grade when the brakes failed. When the pickup started scraping the side of the mountain in an effort to slow it, Kari, following in another vehicle, asked, “What the hell is he doing?”
In real life, I wasn’t the one asking that question. It was my daughter following behind my husband, myself, and two three year old grandchildren in a pickup pulling a camper. We were on our way to the lake for the weekend. My daughter and then boyfriend were right behind us. He’s the one who said, “It’s the brakes, baby.”
My son, his wife, and two more grandchildren were behind them. My son was—wait, I don’t want to give too much away here. Let me just say, in my experience, when the brakes failed, my husband said, “Get a hold of the kids.”
I asked, “What for?”
He said, “To jump.”
I didn’t scream, not aloud anyway, but my head whirled. I leaned over and started searching the floorboard.
He asked, “What are you doing?”
Keep in mind this is all going on while we’re scraping the side of a mountain with a camper doing a horrible imitation of a bucking bull behind us and there was nothing on the other side to keep us from going down into a canyon.
“I’m looking for my shoes.”
Okay, crazy. I had the notion if I was going to jump out of a runaway pickup with a kid in each arm; I should have my shoes on. Like I was going to stay on my feet.
The kids, one boy and one girl, never made a sound the entire time it took my husband to use the mountainside for a brake. He really did do a miraculous job. I can tell you there were six very relieved adults when the grade leveled off and that pickup stopped.
In the book, Edward says he could use a drink. Well so did I. I wasn’t thinking alcohol though, I was just thirsty, and never thought much about my daughter handing me a cooler. I don’t drink often, don’t care for how it makes me feel, but a wine cooler? Can’t be strong.
I sucked that puppy down. When my head started swimming and I giggled, my daughter informed me that particular cooler wasn’t wine; it contained rum. As mellow as it made me, it sure helped when the brakes cooled and we had to get back in that pickup to get the rest of the way down that mountain. PS, we took a different route home, longer but flatter.
Steven jumped at the chance to see the Morning Meadow Mansion even if he had just met Caroleigh and suspected he would have to fend off her amorous attentions for the weekend. The house was one of the few houses left designed by DeBain and had never been open to the public. There was the added possibility of landing the job of developing the property for a resort/hotel. Forewarned that Caroleigh's sister, Kari, was a little strange and taking his own transportation in case Caroleigh's advances became too much, he wasn't warned of possible haunting until the party of four arrived to find themselves locked out and waiting for Kari. Kari was remote and distant. Steven found out why; more secrets existed in the meadow than visits from the hereafter.
Excerpt: G (Steven begins the conversation with Kari.)
"How often does someone else drive your truck?"
"Never, but at least now you can't believe it’s Caroleigh."
"At least now you're taking it seriously."
"I don't—" She broke off as Steven and Rascal both jerked and looked up the stairs. "What?"
"Evelyn is screaming her head off."
"Hurt or mad?" she asked, braced to run if need be.
"You'll be able to tell soon enough. She's coming this way."
So was the group from the kitchen. They all met at the foot of the stairs as Evelyn ran down the steps. She waved clothes in each hand, still screaming.
"Look at this! Look at what that miserable old man did! Look at my beautiful clothes!"
It was difficult to see what she raved about the way she flailed them. Edward caught one, a frilly blouse, and pulled it from her hand. He held it up, and light shone through the slashes in it.
"You see?" she shrieked. "See what he did!"
"Who did?” Edward asked as the others stared in astonishment.
"That miserable old man."
"Max?" Caroleigh asked. "Why would he do that?"
"He's mean and hateful."
"That's personality, dear," Edward told her, "not a reason."
"She put him up to it." She pointed an accusing finger at Kari. "She doesn't want me here."
"Maybe the ghost did it," Emily suggested quietly.
"There is no ghost, you moron."
"Yes there is. I saw him."
"Not now, dear," Edward told her.
"I did see him. He was right there.” She looked as she pointed, gave one of her ear piercing screams and nearly crawled up Vern’s chest.
"Jesus," Caroleigh breathed. She back-handed Edward in the chest, showing she had known all along that he had been responsible for the tricks. "Turn that off."
Edward could only stammer. "I-I-I…"
The man, though obviously not a real man since he was transparent, stood just inside the front door. He was bloody from gashes on his forehead, and more blood dripped from a severed arm.
"This isn't funny," Caroleigh yelled at Edward. "Turn it off."
"That isn't mine," he croaked.
"Kari, no,” Steven shouted.
He grabbed for her and missed her arm as she stepped towards it, but she heard him and twisted to look at him in puzzlement. When she looked back, the man was gone.
"Jesus," Caroleigh gasped again.
"I don't think so, love," Edward quipped weakly. "The clothes were all wrong."
"That wasn't funny," she shouted at him.
"I didn't do it," he shouted back.
“You’re the one,” Evelyn shouted at Kari.
“What?” Kari asked in distraction and jerked her eyes away from the landing behind Evelyn.
“What were you looking at?” Steven's question was lost in Evelyn’s screeching.
“You’re the one who blocks him. You’re probably the one who calls him just to-to…just to-to…”
As she stammered to a stop, Kari half-shook her head and murmured in perplexity, “Why would I call him only to block him? You’re not making any sense.”
Evelyn threw what was left of her clothes to the floor. “That’s it. Take me back to Denver, right now.”
The last was directed at Vern. He had not made a sound or moved except in reflex to protect himself from Emily's strangle hold around his neck. When Evelyn yelled at him, he gulped but still didn't move.
"Take me now," Evelyn ordered with an edge of hysteria to her voice.
Edward shook himself. "Evelyn, dear, it's—"
"I won't stay here one more minute, not one minute. You aren’t making me stay."
"Okay, okay," he said quickly. He turned to Vern. "You better take her before she does something rash."
Vern looked at him helplessly.
"Yes, right, well, ah, Emily, would you like to go back to town as well?"
Emily dissolved into tears and nodded vigorously.
"If you could just give me a hand," Vern said weakly, "I'll be glad to take them."
They had to work Emily’s arms loose first. Edward had to help Vern support her once they did. Evelyn needed no help, not even with the van door. She was outside and in the van before the other three could reach the porch. Edward slipped a credit card into Vern's hand with orders to charge his fee and get whatever the women might need before he hurried back. He was met with two sets of accusing eyes and one curious.
He answered the accusers with, "I didn't do that. I didn't."
"How would it be done?” Steven asked, not in the least sure he believed him.
"I don't know. Some kind of projector, but…" He shuddered. "It looked so…so…give me a minute." They waited the second or two it took him to collect himself. "Okay, a projector of some kind. Did anyone notice a shaft of light going into him…it?"
"All I saw was blood," Caroleigh said quietly.
"He bled to death," Kari said.
"What?" all three asked.
"My father, he bled to death on the front veranda. He couldn't get in.
Grandpa had locked the door. He couldn't get in, not until now.”
Edward asked nervously, "Are you saying you've seen that before?"
"He’s never made it in the house before. The door always stopped him until now. He must have gained strength through Evelyn’s anger."
"This is cruel," Caroleigh told Edward angrily.
"I didn't do it," Edward exclaimed again.
Kari's gaze turned inward as she stoked Rascal. Steven was the first to notice she was drifting away from them. He touched her on the arm lightly.
"Doesn't seem to have bothered him any," he said gently.
"They don't frighten him anymore. He’s gotten used to them."
"Them?” Edward croaked.
Caroleigh groaned and sat down on the stairs, her face in her hands.
"That's why I sleep in the back,” Kari explained. “They don't go there.”
While all of them stared at her, she batted her eyes.
"Damn it, Kari!" Steven shouted. "That wasn't funny!"
"It was a joke?” Edward asked dumbly.
"Got ya," Kari told him.
"Oh, thank God.” He dropped to sit beside Caroleigh.
Kari remarked matter-of-factly, "Steven thinks someone is trying to kill me.”
Larriane AKA Larion Wills, two names one author, thousands of stories