30 March 2011

Titan's Jewel, Part Four (3/30/11)

It's that time of the week again! Here's the next installment for Titan's Jewel:
God, she smelled good. Even having been laying in a hard bunk bed and roused from warm covers for an early morning walk, she smelled like lavender and honey. Brett set the blushing Shiloh to her feet, regretting not seizing his moment.

But he knew she would have run. “Watch out for those tree roots,” he said. “They’ve run a little wild.”

“I noticed.” She cleared her throat and stepped back. “So, ah… Are we going anywhere else?” A rumbling noise drew their attention to the lone road leading into town, where a semi-trailer was pulling in hauling their equipment on a flatbed truck. Brett sighed.

“Nope, guess not.”

Three hours later, the sun was trying desperately to break through the cloud cover and breathe some life into the dreary little spot the three treasure hunters were looking over. Tom was a bundle of energy, his coffee mug waving wildly through the air. More than once, Brett found himself sidestepping a stream of hot liquid. “All right, Tom,” he finally said over the mindless chatter. “Where are we starting?”

Tom closed his eyes and twirled his finger in the air randomly and plopped it onto an area on the map to the far north of them. He grabbed the highlighter and quickly shaded in a square. “Right here.”

Shiloh looked at him with an expression of disbelief. “You don’t have an excavation plan?”

“No,” Tom replied.

She closed her eyes and sighed. “Well, this should be fun.”

“You signed up for it, honey,” Brett said with a nudge to her ribcage. She stuck her tongue out at him and swung into the large machine that would dig the land up at their feet. “You sure you can handle this thing?”

“You calling me incapable?” Shiloh retorted and fired it up. The monster roared to life, sending puffs of exhaust into the air. She expertly checked all her gauges and made sure everything was as it should be before shooing him aside.

Brett watched her roll away towards the assigned spot. “Just making sure,” he muttered to himself as Tom sped up beside him.

The area they were working in was a tad on the creepy side. What used to be residential now was abandoned and in decay. Roofs sagged onto porches and windows were cracked, if not altogether missing. Wood was chipped and peeling away, rotted at the seams, and several old children’s toys were scattered throughout the area, forgotten. A tricycle turned on its side at some point in a windstorm was rusted through and one wheel spun ominously in the light breeze.

Shiloh was sitting in the excavator, staring at the tricycle wheel, when Tom and Brett pulled up. She jumped when the door of the truck slammed and looked down at them. “Are you sure we should be digging here? I mean, this is kind of… I don’t know. Eerie.”

Tom frowned. “How so, dear?” Brett glanced at his business partner. Somehow, the man was completely impervious to the air of danger that lurked all around them.

“I feel like I’m being watched,” she replied frankly, jumping down.

Brett snorted. “You believe in ghosts, Shiloh?” The look she gave him was enough to melt gold. “Listen,” he said, sobering for her sake, “this is just an abandoned old fishing town. Nothing happened here that’s significant.”

“You don’t call a mass murder significant?”

“That took place several generations before the town was abandoned,” Tom said. “Now. Let’s dig!” His tone indicated the argument was settled, but Shiloh didn’t look convinced as she climbed back in the machine and set the teeth into the ground.

With a loud rumble, the dirt began shifting and ripped up easily. Shiloh dumped it to the side and waited for further instruction, but Tom held his hand up. Something in the hole she’d made glimmered and Brett stepped forward. “Look at that,” Tom said. “An hourglass.” One of the bulbs was broken, and when he picked it up the sand drained onto the corner of a hard metal surface just showing under the dirt. Shiloh leaped out of the machine and crouched by Brett. “What is that?” “I think we’ve stumbled on a time capsule.”


Don't forget to check out the other magnificent Silver Flashers:

Sui Lynn (M/M)

RJ Scott (M/M)

LM Brown (M/M)

27 March 2011

Six Sentence Sunday

Well, since Delila finished up her scene (for the most part, lol) I think I'll switch to a WIP this week. Meet Sam, a waitress at a biker bar, and Shadow, a charismatic beast of a man.

Sundays were usually slow, and that night was no different. Tables were empty, save for the few rogue tourists, and I was leaned against the bar, bored, when he walked in.

I didn’t notice him at first; he was alone and the atmosphere didn’t change, but I smelled his cologne when he sat next to me at the bar. “Hello, Sam,” Shadow said.

“Hello, there. What’s your poison?” I switched into server mode almost immediately and got his beer since Stetson was out back doing something with something or other and Elena had disappeared. “What brings you by alone? I thought you ran with a pack like the other wolves nearby.”

25 March 2011

Please welcome Victoria Blisse!

Firstly, Many thanks to Lindsay for hosting me today, it’s a pleasure to be here!
I’m so excited because Artistic Sights, Heavenly Delights is out on Monday. Let me get the blurb out of the way, then you know what the story is about!

He paid her to paint his portrait but he really wanted to steal her heart.
Hermione is an independent, single mother who has caught the eye of Philip Haughtington, society high-flyer and well known heart breaker.
He wants to seduce her and she is determined to resist but how long will she be able to hold out against his looks, charm and firm, commanding hand?

ASHD (abbreviated to save on typing time!) is set at this time of year. I love spring, don’t you? I adore the flowers and one in particular is my favourite.
I love daffodils or, as my daughter used to call them when she was little, dafterbells. However I am also partial to the crocus and all the variation of bells from snow to blue that you see in the spring.
I tried to capture the exuberance of spring in my writing and also, in the UK anyway, the unavoidable spring showers too. This is what happens when the British weather decides to ruin Hermione and Philip’s plans.

Minute droplets of water began to appear on the windscreen, Philip switched on his wipers.
“Maybe it’s just a shower,” he said
The little flecks turned into huge drops that couldn’t be distinguished from each other. “I don’t think I’ll be able to paint in this.” Hermione sighed.
“No, not outside anyway. Is there anything you can work on inside?”
“Well yeah,” she said. “I can do you inside.”
“Wa hey.” He grinned. “What about the painting though?”
She giggled and slapped his arm. “You know what I mean,” she said. “Behave.”
“Well, you can’t blame me for trying. Okay then, we’ll go up to the house and we’ll find somewhere for you to paint in peace.”
Hermione was over-awed the moment she walked in through the side entrance of the manor. Even though they were walking into the kitchen, everything was on a grand scale and she felt as if she was stepping into the backdrop of a fairytale.
“We’ll go into one of the side halls. You should have some good light and it’ll be quiet,. No one ever goes in them except to dust.” He picked out a couple of cans from the huge fridge freezer as he walked past, then led the way into the hall.
The last time Hermione had walked down such a grand hall was when she’d visited a stately home on a school trip. She felt like she was in a museum and the setting just emphasized how different her circumstances were. She didn’t usually consider herself poor. Yes, she had to work hard to look after herself and her daughter, but they always had food to eat and bills got paid. But compared to the affluence of Philip’s home she was a pauper.
She had been wrestling with Philip’s offer all night and had on a couple of occasions fantasised about things going further, a relationship developing and all that would come with that. She had really convinced herself that it could work, they weren’t so different after all. Those dreams showed themselves as what they were as Hermione walked through the chandelier-hung halls to a neglected room that was bigger than her whole flat.
“Will this be okay?” he asked. “It’s not the most comfortable of rooms but the windows are huge.”
“Yeah, this will work,” she said. “I may need some artificial light because there is not much of the real stuff outside right now.” A gust of wind forced the rain against the window with a heavy clatter to emphasise her point. “I’m not quite sure where you should stand or sit, I could do with you in a similar position to that on the log the other day…so I can do some work on your body.”
A flash of rough bark against skin and his hand on her arse coursed through her mind and heated her cheeks.
“Hmm, that’ll be good,” he replied with a smirk. “If I lean up on the back of this sofa here, that’s pretty similar, right?”
Hermione nodded. “I can do you from the waist up there at least.”
“Damn, I was hoping you’d work from the waist down.”
Would you stop that,” Hermione barked. “I just want to get on with this painting, all right?”
“Okay.” He stared at the floor. “I’m sorry. I don’t want to upset you.”
“Well, just sit there and behave then,” she snapped, harder than she meant to really but she was flustered and vulnerable. If he made a move on her she would not be able to resist.

I hope you’ve enjoyed finding out about Artistic Sights, Heavenly delights, remember it will be available to buy on Monday. For more details and another excerpt check here:
(Thanks for dropping in, Victoria, and congratulations on the release!)

23 March 2011

Titan's Jewel, Part Three (3/23/11)

Well, hello again! Welcome back for another installment of Titan's Jewel. Away we go:

Shiloh couldn't sleep. The tiny bunk bed was hard and uncomfortable, in spite of her pillow and favorite blanket. Not to mention, her feet hit the wall and if she sat up too fast her head would be through the linoleum ceiling. How Brett could be snoring away below was beyond her.

Brett. The man was nothing but a question peppering maniac. He'd been trying to pry history out of her ever since their conversation in the RV's kitchen earlier in the afternoon. While Tom was mapping out the points they'd be starting with, Brett was sneaking questions. While Shiloh was surveying the land to determine her best route action to excavate the land, he was throwing leading bits of conversation at her.

Even while she was attempting to scrape together a meal for the three of them, he was pestering her. Finally, Shiloh pretended pretended to be snoring and he rolled over on the bottom bunk, silent at long last. She didn't dare move until Brett's steady snoring floated to her ears.

Shiloh lay quietly, staring at the pocked ceiling. Insomnia was an old friend, and quite unwelcome. Sleepless nights often dropped in without notice, beginning when her mother became gravely ill with cancer. Shiloh would sit up with her into the wee hours of the morning while the pain wrenched through her system, singing soft melodies and stroking her mother's hair until sleep took her in its soft grasp. Before she died, Shiloh's mother made her the wool blanket she was rubbing against her cheek that very night.

And now, her brain just wouldn't shut down. The pills the doctors gave her were no help, excercises were no use. She just stopped seeing the baffled doctors after awhile.

"Psst." The whisper made her jump so hard that her head deflected off the unforgiving ceiling. Even with only his eyes visible, the devilish enjoyment in her pain was visible on Brett's face.

"What?" Shiloh whispered irritably, rubbing her forehead.

"You're not sleeping." It wasn't a question. He stood more fully and rested his elbows on her bed.

"No, I'm not. You were, though," she replied. Shiloh fluffed her pillow and threw her head back on it before drawing the blanket up to her cheek again.

Brett snorted. "If you can call that sleeping. These aren't very comfortable."

"I'd rather sleep on spikes," she agreed, smiling.

"Hey," he said after a brief pause, poking her in the shoulder, "come on a walk with me."

Shiloh balked at him and propped on an elbow. "Excuse me? It's 4 a.m. and you want to take a casual stroll through an abandoned fishing town?"

"Why not? You're not scared, are you?" he taunted. Pride and a hint of insanity welled inside of her. Hadn't her ex-fiancee said the same damn thing when he'd been trying to convince her to go skydiving?

"Scared? Never." And hadn't she said the same damn thing back? Curse my pride, she thought as her feet swung down to meet cold tiled floor.

Brett was waiting just outside when Shiloh shut the door softly behind her. His breath streamed out in tiny puffs against the cold air. She grinned and cupped her already cold hands over her mouth for the steam. The town seemed to watch her through the thick fog and dirty, broken panes of glass. A door swung on a creaky hinge somewhere in the distance, leaving an eerie and echoing sound in the still morning air. Shiloh couldn’t suppress the shiver that ran through her. “A walk right now, Brett? Are you sure?”

He shifted on each foot, his naturally high energy personality shining through even in the dim morning light. “Yeah. I’d like to see the town before we dig it up.”

Shiloh walked a few paces very quickly to catch up to him when he took off. “Didn’t we see the town yesterday?”

“Well, sure, but that wasn’t really seeing the town, you know?” He looked at her, expecting a nod of agreement or some sound of consent.

“No, I don’t get it.”

Suddenly, he darted off the road, compelling her to follow with a waving hand. They ventured into the creepy little park with its withered trees and rusted playground equipment. “Take this old park for instance, Shiloh. The kids used to romp and play on the equipment, just as happy as could be, while their parents or babysitters sat on these benches and watched them.” Brett patted the bench wistfully, looking somewhere far off.

He grabbed her hand and tugged her towards a tree. “And look here,” he said, excitement filling his voice. “This is where the young lovers would come to sit down and talk about their dreams and futures together, Shiloh.”

“You’re a hopeless romantic, aren’t you, Brett?” She grinned and poked him in the ribs. “You are. You’re blushing.”

Brett smiled. “Do you see this?” he whispered, pointing to a heart on the tree, forever carved into the wood by a shaking hand. “The mark of a set of lovers.”
"But what makes this tree so special out of the thousands of trees across America with the exact same thing?"
"This one is the only one of its kind, of course." Duh, Shiloh, his voice implied. He walked to the next tree and waved her over with an excited hand. "Look at this one," he said.
Shiloh made her way over in the low lying fog, not watching where she was going. Her foot caught on a root and she flew forward in a free fall, but Brett caught her halfway down. She found herself looking straight into his eyes, their steaming breaths mingling in the early morning. "Careful there," he said softly.
Be sure to check out the other magnificent Silver flashers:

Pia Veleno M/M

RJ Scott M/M

LM Brown M/M

Victoria Blisse M/F

Lily Sawyer M/M

Julie Hayes M/M

Pender Mackie M/M

Sui Lynn M/M

Ryssa Edwards M/M

20 March 2011

Six Sentence Sunday

Here's the next bit From Delila's story:

About fifteen nervous wolf-men occupied the room at the end of the hall; Mr Bulky must have warned them I'd made it through. Or perhaps the lack of a blood-curdling scream told them I'd survived. Either way, they waited for me, so I swung a red heel around and then slid down the wall to lean against the doorway, studying my fingernails. "All that work and I didn't even chip a nail."

"Delila," said a tall and lanky man directly in front of me.

The man I assumed to be Malachie sat at a round table at the center of the room.

And that's where she finds herself this week! I'm sooooooooooo excited because Delila went LIVE yesterday! She's available here, for the Nook, Kindle, and various other e-book formats.

Pardon me while I *happy dance* and be sure to check out the other magnificent Six Sentence Sunday bloggers here!

19 March 2011

Delila is live!

This is it! Delila is now live and ready to go! Holy frigging schnitzel, I'm so excited.
So, so excited.
Anyway, make sure and go check her out, and while you're at it, check out the latest from Gale Stanley, Chris Quinton, and Amber Kell!

18 March 2011

Tomorrow! *vomits rainbows*

Tomorrow is the release of The Life And Times of Delila!

*happy dance*


Thanks so much for all the support! You guys are amazing and spectacular.

16 March 2011

Titan's Jewel, Part Two (3/16/11)

Hello again! Here's part two of Titan's Flash! Hope you enjoy.

*LANGUAGE WARNING* (Just for one word, but still.)

Brett watched his sassy counterpart march away with a smirk playing on his features. She’d be easier to play than he thought. When Tom, his dearly departed grandmother’s oldest friend, suggested bringing the feisty financial advisor onboard Brett was initially opposed.

But how could he keep objecting when he saw the expert ease with which she handled the excavator? Not to mention the legs and quick wit. He felt almost guilty bringing Shiloh along on this potentially wild goose chase. She was down on her luck anyway, and if they didn’t find it…well, they wouldn’t be going home any richer.

If they did find it, they’d be going home secret billionaires.

Legend said the diamond was drug up from the depths of the ocean by a lonely and deformed young fisherman. He took the jewel to the most beautiful young maiden in the village and promised it to her with her hand in marriage. But she was in love with a handsome Lord.
Greed won and together, the Lord and the lady plotted against the poor fisherman.

When the fisherman heard of the plot, he went mad and killed the lady, the Lord, their families, and with the lady died the tiny child growing in her womb. The fisherman is said to have buried the diamond in the city somewhere and in a fit of depression and fury threw himself into the ocean. The locals next town over say anyone who's searched for the diamond have never returned.

With a resigned sigh, Brett threw several boxes onto his shoulder and made his way through the low crawling fog towards a monstrosity of an RV. Tom had tugged one along that someone might have seen in the days before the war heading towards the Grand Canyon with a small circus in tow. But no one traveled across the new boundaries anymore. New generations didn’t know the joys of standing on a precipice looking over the edge of the world, and likely never would.

Shiloh was stacking canned goods in the cabinets when Brett sidled through the small door. She hummed softly while working, making him smile to himself at her optimism. “What are you so happy about?”

“What’s not to be happy about?” she replied with a trace of sarcasm. “We’re in the middle of an abandoned fishing town on the tip of America with winter blasting us. But,” she amended, “we have the chance to find this rare jewel and go home changed people.” Shiloh put a can of green beans down with a wistful sigh. “Dad could finally retire and I wouldn’t have to take over.”

Brett cast her a sidelong glance. “You don’t want to take over the family business?” He should have known the VP of a financial firm would be too good for a construction career.

She seemed to snap out of her reverie. “Well, don’t get me wrong here, Brett. Dad runs an honest business, which is more than I can say for most of the fucking scum in the financial sector. But I didn’t grow up to work in construction.”

“But you did grow up wanting to work in accounting?” He couldn’t wrap his head around someone wanting to work with numbers for the rest of their lives.

“No.” Shiloh slammed some cans down with a little bit more ferocity than necessary. “No, I didn’t say I don’t want to work construction.” There was a story, Brett realized.

“So why don’t you?” He leaned an elbow against the counter next to her, having put his boxes away while they talked, and watched her closely. Shiloh had a way of ticking when she got nervous; he’d noticed it when Tom was discussing the proposal with her so many months ago. Her hands jerked in an uneven fashion and her chest seemed to palpitate in an odd stroke here and there.

She swallowed thickly. “Construction is a man’s field,” she replied softly and stared at the can in her hands, twirling it back and forth absentmindedly. “Don't look at me like that. I learned early on. That’s all.”

With the subject effectively closed, she threw the can in the cabinet and walked into the fog for the next round of boxes without another word.


Be sure to check out the other magnificent Silver Flashers:

LM Brown (M/M)
Lily Sawyer (M/M)
RJ Scott (M/M)
Sui Lynn (M/M)
Pender Mackie (M/M)
Heather Lin (M/F)
Victoria Blisse (M/F)
Julie Lynn Hayes (M/M)
Ryssa Edwards (M/M)

11 March 2011

Gale Stanley is my guest today!

Hey, everybody! I'd like you to meet Gale Stanley, an excellent fellow author at Silver Publishing. Enjoy!

Please tell the readers a little about yourself:

I’ve always loved books and I’ve always been a daydreamer. I’d make up my own stories and I thought I’d be a real writer someday, but my life took a detour. I worked full time as a surveyor and CAD manager but I still read a lot and I wrote book reviews online and for RT Book Reviews magazine. Eventually I wrote a short story and submitted it. The Power of the Purr was published in A Cup of Comfort for Cat Lovers. Two more stories were accepted for the Cup of Comfort anthologies and meanwhile I was working on my first novel – Call of the Wilds.

How about your latest release?

My new release is Sleepless Knights, a contemporary M/M Romance that came out on March 5.


After falling passionately in love, Andy and Paul are totally committed to each other. But when the two-year itch infects their relationship, Paul becomes distant and refuses to talk about it. Paul is the love of Andy’s life and he’ll do anything to make him happy, even if it means bringing another man into their bed. But is it really the answer? Or will it drive them further apart?

Zach flees to Los Angeles to escape his abusive father. He plans to use his good looks to get into the film industry but catching that big break is harder than he thought. He decides to try his luck in San Francisco. He has no money but if he can find someone to put a roof over his head, he’ll trade sex for security. When two smokin’ hot guys pick him up on the Pacific Coast Highway, he thinks he hit pay dirt. He never expected to actually fall for them.

SLEEPLESS KNIGHTS is available at Silver Publishing

Care to share a bit about one of the characters?

I really empathize with Zach’s character in this story. He had a traumatic childhood and as a result, he’s deeply flawed and he’s made some unwise choices in his life. When he meets Andy and Paul he has an opportunity to really take advantage of them. The fact that he puts himself in danger rather than come between them shows true heroism.

What was your primary inspiration for this book?

I didn’t plan to write Sleepless Knights. It came as a surprise. Silent Knights had been released and I received a nice message on Facebook from someone who enjoyed the story. She suggested that I write a sequel. As I read her note an idea came to me and I knew there was more to the story. Sleepless Knights is dedicated to her.

Do you have any muses?

My muse is a little voice in my head that always comes at the most inconvenient times. When I had a day job, it would whisper in my ear while I was driving to work. When I’m home it usually comes when I’m in the shower or lying in bed in the middle of the night. So when I need inspiration I try to zone out or do something to relax my mind. Needless to say I always have paper and pen close by.

Any advice for aspiring writers?

I’m a big Stephen King fan. I’ve read all his books but my favorite is a work of non-fiction called On Writing – A Memoir of the Craft. It’s a combination of autobiography, instruction and inspiring advice. I think he gives the best advice possible in the following quote: “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” The only thing I can add is, never give up your dreams.

If you could be one animal, person, or place for a day what/who would it be?

Whether it’s being a place or visiting a place, I have to say Bangkok. I just signed a contract for a book titled One night in Bangkok. I did a lot of research on the setting and I fell in love with it – the culture, the history, the naughtiness. It’s one of the hottest tourist destinations, in more ways than one. Located just 14 degrees north of the equator, it holds claim to being the hottest city in the world. It sounds perfect to someone like me who hates the cold weather.

Five random facts about you:

1. I totally write by the seat of my pants. I can’t outline to save my life.
2. I spend a lot of time at the beach, winter and summer.
3. I have two Tonkinese cats that talk to me.
4. I watch every reality show from Real World to Real Housewives.
5. I’m teaching myself to play piano.

Are you working on any new releases later this year?

Book 2 in The Gentlemen’s Club series, Some Like it Rough, will be out March 19. It’s a contemporary MM romance. And Hunter and the Hawk will be released in April. It’s book 1 in a new paranormal MM series. I don’t have a date yet for One Night in Bangkok.

Anything else you’d like to say?

I just want to thank the readers for all their support. I feel fortunate to be able to do something I love. Books have always been a big part of my life and they helped me through some tough times. And if I can provide entertainment and escape for someone else, that makes my day.
Thank you so much for having me today. I enjoyed visiting.

Contact info (Facebook, Twitter, website, blog):

From Sleepless Knights:

North Beach, San Francisco

Never go to sleep angry. His mother’s words resonated in Andy’s head. Cliché? Maybe. But it worked for his parents. They'd been happily married for twenty years before they died in a car accident.

Andy understood the concept only too well. His unresolved conflicts had been festering to the point he woke angrier every morning. It was only a matter of time until he or Paul exploded over some minor offense and destroyed their relationship completely.

He stood at the side of the bed and looked down at his lover feigning sleep. How do you fix something when your partner shuts you out? It had been like this for months, Paul claiming exhaustion, going to bed early and pretending to be asleep. They used to go to bed together.
Now it seemed like Paul couldn't get away from him fast enough.

Andy never expected things to be easy. Relationships rarely were and he and Paul were polar opposites. He expected their personalities to clash once in awhile, and they did. But despite their totally different upbringings and outlooks they'd somehow made it work. Up until now.

They'd been together almost two years and Andy thanked his lucky stars they'd met at all. He'd been grieving his dead partner, hiding from the world in a hunting cabin in rural Pennsylvania. Paul had been visiting his estranged family after a bad breakup with his lover.

Fate stepped in and Paul, stranded in a major snowstorm, had been forced to wait it out in Andy's cabin. Just like that sparks flew. When Paul went back home to San Francisco, Andy followed, and the rest was history. They hadn't been apart since.

Too much togetherness could be part of the problem. Not wanting to come off as clingy, Andy tried giving Paul time and space for himself. After all they were a couple, not joined at the hip.
Now Andy feared he’d given him too much space. He needed to change his strategy before it was too late. Maybe he could use sex to bridge the gap between them. Their sex life had fizzled out into an occasional perfunctory fuck and he hated it. Making love had always made him feel closer to Paul. He missed the intimacy they had once shared.

Andy slipped into bed and curved his body around Paul's. Just his lover's musky male scent was enough to make his cock twitch with interest. He reached an arm around Paul and rolled a nipple between his fingers. Although it stiffened under his teasing, Paul gave no other sign he wanted more. Tonight Andy refused to turn a blind eye to Paul's icy indifference.

Thanks again for stopping by, Gale!

04 March 2011

Titan's Jewel, Part One (3/9/11)

Hi, everybody! This is the beginning of my very first web story, called Titan's Jewel. Hope you enjoy; every Wednesday a new section will be posted at a limit of 1k words. Should be interesting, to say the least. I tend to overspeak. Had to shave 141 words off this one while still managing to maintain the scenery. Anyhoo, away we go!

Part One:

Tom Scott's overbearing diesel truck rolled to a stop on the edge of an abandoned fishing town. Bilbo, Maine sat on the very topmost corner of the state; prior to World War Three was thriving with shrimp, prawn, and lobster.

When the devastation of the newest prolific weapon hit, most of the sea life just offshore died with the toxins leaking into the salty water. The survivors retreated into the nether regions of the ocean. Human life resumed, after a period of severe unrest.

Three factions had begun warring with each other. The Arab nations united as a whole and declared war against the United States. China reared its head, too, and suddenly America found itself battling two superpowers. Eventually, the fighting bated and America was split into three parts, with Texas remaining an independent state. Each region was ruled by a body of people appointed by the new world order.

The far west coast, from California to Oklahoma, was ruled under Sharia law. These new rules were quite unwelcome. The central states were owned by China, from Kansas up to the Dakotas, and Ohio down through Louisiana under a new dictatorship. The remaining states became the new America.

After a time of rebuilding and reorganizing, the new America ran almost as efficiently as the old America. Sure, there was a shortage of food. Lines at grocers extended oftentimes around the block, and rations were put into effect. Homes were sparsely furnished; children got substandard education. But overall, America still held the same foundations she was founded upon.

Shiloh Flint lived in New York City. Double the original population lived there, as well, which made overcrowding a huge problem. She paraded as Vice President of a major financial corporation with "international" ties to Texas and the remaining two pieces of the torn country. She had everything anyone could dream of: A hot job, handsome fiancee, nice apartment, and a cat.

But when a document intended for the CEO landed on her desk instead, her world came crashing down. The single piece of paper, on her company's letterhead, implicated several thousand people from the top down in a scheme to extort millions of dollars from new America's more prosperous counterparts.

Shiloh did the only thing a person in her situation could: she reported them to the authorities. Within weeks, the company collapsed around her. Shiloh had planned ahead, though, and stocked away enough money in savings to hold her over for three years.

That was until her idiot fiancee ran off with his personal trainer to the Bahamas. He was kind enough to drain all of Shiloh's accounts before he left, though.

With nowhere else to turn and no one willing to hire the whistle blower, Shiloh returned home to her father and his construction business. As a child, he let her ride along as he ran the excavator and in high school construction was her summer job. She fell back into the work as easily as riding a bike.

One sunny August morning, Shiloh was expertly maneuvering the large machine to route a hill out of existence when her father swung himself up and pointed her to a rather short man and his rather tall, rather handsome counterpart.

Four hours later, the charming short man, Tom, had convinced her to accompany he and his cohort, Brett Prerit, to an abandoned town off the coast of Maine on a mission for the "Diamond of Titan". Shiloh agreed for two reasons: she could use the break, and they promised her an even thirty three percent of the cut.

If the diamond was found, it would be worth well over three billion dollars.

That's how Shiloh found herself in the middle of nowhere in February. She watched from the backseat as they pulled to a stop and the headlights cut through a low flowing early morning fog.

Tom hopped out of the truck and took a deep breath. "Look at this place," he called to no one in particular. "It's a gold mine!"

Shiloh snorted while unwrapping her shoulder length blond hair from its messy twist in preparation for harsh winter winds. "Yeah. Sure." She pulled a wool beanie low over her forehead. "So when do we start?"

Brett turned in his seat to eye her down. He had chestnut brown eyes and hair as black as night. He was probably thirty five or a little younger. Shiloh could only imagine what lay underneath his perfectly fit t-shirt. "Our equipment arrives tomorrow," he replied.

"Oh," she replied impotently as he hopped out of the truck and began untying knots from their supplies in the bed. Shiloh made her way out to help him. The town seemed to whisper as she emerged from the truck and she glanced around uneasily. Sagging roofs gave way to broken windows and barricaded doors. A playground sat in the center of town, a broken swing hanging feebly from its rusted chain. The sea wind blew in hard and cold off the pier in the distance.

With a chill shooting down her spine, Shiloh backed up to the bed of the truck and began untying her side. "So, um...Where are we all sleeping?"

Brett grinned and jerked his head towards the RV that Tom had towed along. "There's a master bedroom and two bunk beds. I call bottom," he said with a wink.

Shiloh smiled and blushed, concentrating intently on her knot. "Listen," she said, "I got the distinct impression when we met that you don't like me-"

"I like you just fine," he retorted, cutting her short. "I'm just not quite sure how good you really are, or how much we can trust you."

"The hell do you mean, trust me?" Anger flashed through her, making the blush burn brighter.

Brett held his hands up defensively. "Now, now," he said. "You're new here, that's all. Nothing personal." He lugged a box out of the truck and smiled at her. "You're cute when you're mad, by the way."

Be sure to check out the other Silver flashers:

01 March 2011

Six Sentence Sunday!

Continuing on with Delila:

I swung from chain to chain, avoiding the ground and the various tools of disembowelment that greeted me until I landed in a half crouch on the floor at the base of the stairs. Mr. Bulky stared at me with his mouth open, so I winked at him and went the only way I could.

Lucky for me I had excellent night vision because it became ominously dark. Several doorways loomed between me and a flickering light at the end of the hallway, and I hesitated at them. Faint whispers of aura emanated from them, so I scaled the walls instead and went over them. Whatever lurked in those rooms was not human, not animal, but caught somewhere in between.

I am so glad to see positive feedback on her; occasionally I wonder if she's too strong. LOL