Thursday, November 1, 2012

A view from the end

Mistress of Malice and Mercy is done.

Yes, you read that right.  It's done.  All I'm waiting on is the cover art (Viola will be on the cover of this one... I'm so excited and nervous I can hardly stand it) and a few final edits.

To celebrate with y'all (since I can't pour you each a glass of the wonderful Texas red wine I'll have tonight), I'm posting a snippet from the last chapter.

But first... I struggled with how I wanted to end this story because it is the end of the series.  I worried about making it dramatic and final, but when the time came to actually write the chapter, it was so much easier than I feared.  It comes back to how it started:  a guy, a girl, and a pack of demons. 

- - -

“Who do we have to kill?” Duke murmured in her ear.

“A pack of Nverns,” Viola said, reading the messages on her screen.

The duvet lifted.  Cold air wafted over her back and chest.  Duke’s head loomed over hers.  “How in the hell did a pack of Nverns get your phone number?” 

 “I think the better question would be how they managed to use the phone,” she countered, wriggling her fingers at him.  “They have crab claws, remember?”

Duke flopped down beside her, shoving her head to the edge of the pillow.  “Who do we know brave enough to interrupt our vacation?”  He scrubbed a hand over his face.  “The vacation we made very, very clear that we earned.”
“Tom.  He says there’s a pack of Nverns nearby.   The Trackers in the area aren’t equipped to deal with them.”
Duke scowled at the ceiling.  “How does Tom know where we are?  I thought we made him promise not to try to locate us?  You even had that ridiculous pinky-swearing ceremony.”

Viola wriggled guiltily.  She and Duke had agreed to limit their access to technology, but she was so behind on her emails that the thought of falling even further into the hole made her skin crawl.  She’d taken advantage of every moment alone and scrolled through her inbox, reading important emails and deleting spam messages.


“There may or may not be a website devoted to  Chaos Child sightings.  It may or may not have been started by that nice Grakken couple we helped in El Paso.  Tom may or may not have emailed me the link four days ago.”

“I may or may not kick your ass,” Duke growled, rolling over to pin her arms to the mattress.

“Pack of Nverns,” she reminded, though she was tempted to let him try.  She ran her toes along the back of his calf, chuckled when his pupils dilated and a growl rumbled in his chest.  “I brought my new pants.”

“And the vest?”

“Yup.”  She reached up to trace the curve of his lips.  “In the unlikely event you manage to kill more Nverns than I do, I’ll show you what it looks like without the t-shirt underneath.”

“You’re on.”

Before she could blink, he was off the bed and headed for the small closet.  Her Giivva hide pants landed on the bed followed a second later by the matching vest.  The soles of her heavy black boots thunked against the wooden floor when Duke set them beside the bed.


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