Saturday, May 19, 2012

Excerpt Rez Dogs and Scooter Trash,

Rez Dogs and Scooter Trash by Deirdre O'Dare

Blurb: Mike Dufrane fled a traumatic youth, years haunted by an abusive biker father, poverty and degradation,. by escaping into the military. But there he found only more savage violence. Then a chance encounter with an animal rescue group showed him another way. On an Indian Reservation in the southwest, he finds a place to make a difference. Rez Dogs Rescue Shelter will be his route to build a positive life. Then a handsome Native American rides up on a Harley and throws Mike’s plans for a loop.

Adam was not there when his kid brother needed guidance and a firm hand. Back from two tours with Special Forces, he starts a youth center on the Rez to try to atone for his error but he cannot give up his Harley or his image as one bad ass biker. When an outsider starts a shelter for abused and neglected dogs, Adam initially finds it ludicrous but then recognizes a purpose similar to his own. But the stranger seems to fear or hate bikers and is reluctant to begin a friendship. When crime and danger threaten both their projects, they have to join forces to prevail and suppressed attraction bursts into flame.

Excerpt: (Meet Adam and Mike...)
NM State Highway 164

Mid-afternoon, late winter

Sometimes a man just had to ride—fast and far. The bad part was you couldn’t outrun those damned demons, no matter how fast or far you went. Memories, mistakes and missed chances always rode right along. In the end, all you could do was say fuck it and keep on keeping on.

Adam Bolt, Navajo and Kiowa, veteran and rebel, knew he’d missed his era. He should have lived about 1850 when his steed would have been a ragged but tough mustang stallion, one he’d walked down in the wild and tamed himself. He’d be a solitary warrior, someone they told kids stories about at night…cautionary tales to the boys and warnings to the girls. Wild stallions were hard to find in 2012, though, so he rode his Harley instead. With the custom paint job he’d done on the scooter, it never disappeared in the crowd, and by now most folks on the Rez knew who just blew past them.

The biting wind whipped his hair, tearing it free from the braid hanging down his back. It had been one hell of a fight, but somehow he managed not to cut his hair, even when he joined the National Guard and went to the Middle East. Claiming religious freedom finally won the day. In the end, though, it was a pyrrhic victory. He’d served out his six-year enlistment and made a fast exit, but the rebel and troublemaker label would likely follow him until doomsday.

Even behind his mirrored sunglasses, the same wind stung tears from his eyes. There’d be a storm by nightfall. Maybe this one would bring some much-needed moisture. They didn’t call the reservation area high desert for nothing. Although it could get plenty cold, mostly it stayed very dry.

In the back of his mind, a voice much like his mother’s chided him, ordering him to slow down and put his helmet back on before he crashed and cracked his skull.

Do I look like I give a flying fuck? If they have to come and scrape me off the road in an hour or two, who’s left to care?

From what he’d heard, a roach or a snort of dream dust could make him feel all better. Even a bottle of cheap wine might help, but he refused to surrender his soul to drink and drugs. In the end, those demons would be even worse. For now, he’d wrestle with the ones he’d earned and owned, letting alone the kind that sneaked in on the shadows of a brief respite.

Near sundown, he turned off the highway onto a narrow, dusty double track. It led him a couple of miles to the little house crouched under the sheltering bulwark of an eroded, rusty-hued cliff. The place wasn’t much, but it was home, a safe den to return to, lonely but totally his.

He wheeled the bike under a brush-roofed shelter, kicked down the stand and then threw an old tarp over it. On his way across to the door of his house, he passed the faded, rusty Chevy pickup. It had once been his grandfather’s. On the dented bumper a newer sticker boasted, My other car’s a Harley. What’s yours? He slapped the left rear fender, much as he would the haunch of a horse he’d turned loose.

After a second’s pause, he continued to the never-locked front, back and only door into the house—a house he’d designed and built himself. It stood near the site of the crumbling hogan in which he’d grown up. That ruin held many ghosts, even tchindis, but he didn’t fear such lingering spirits. If he left them alone, mostly they’d leave him alone. His personal demons were newer and held little trace of the local haunts.

* * *

Not long afterward, across the Navajo Reservation to the south, in Gallup, New Mexico, Michael Dufrane drove his battered van into the Motel 6 parking lot and stopped across from the door marked Office. In the lot’s circle of light, he saw the first swirling flakes of snow, borne on a biting northwest wind. Although he knew he must be thrifty with the foundation’s funds, the van was loaded to the gills with gear he’d need to begin his project. And it was getting cold. The heater didn’t always work and he would not want to leave it running all night anyway. Sleeping on the ground tonight didn’t look feasible and trying to drive much farther didn’t either. But with any luck, tomorrow he’d be there.

He’d finally found his passion. For his first eighteen years, his sole purpose had been escape—from poverty, from an abusive biker father who came and went, and from the hurtful labels like trailer trash and, even worse, slurs directed at his racially mixed ancestry. He’d managed to get into the army right after 9-11, the first step in his get-away. In Afghanistan, he’d encountered representatives of the International Foundation for Prevention of Cruelty (IFPCA) to Animals. In their quiet but determined way, they’d been fighting right alongside the troops, rescuing dogs and occasionally other creatures caught up in the storms of war. When he helped rescue a puppy for the family of a fallen buddy, it all started to come together, although the seed lay dormant for some time.

The idea, buried deep in his soul, emerged once he’d completed his enlistment and recognized military life was not right for him as a career. He wanted to do visible good, not kill or repeat the violence he’d always known. He could readily identify with abandoned animals, and those neglected or actually abused. Been there and done that. A child was almost as helpless as a dog or cat in the face of cruel treatment. Although the search had taken some time, he’d finally found and met with people responsible for operating the IFPCA. He’d even convinced them he could work for them.

After he saw a TV special about dogs on the western reservations, where poverty, disease, drugs and alcohol took their toll on almost everyone, his goal zoomed into focus. It might not be a huge thing, but he knew he could help. Opening the shelter in Black Gap, New Mexico would be the first step. Tomorrow. He felt the magic in the concept: future, purpose, progress, even power in the ability to make a difference. Safe and snug in the simple room, he slept hard but well, free of the nightmares he often suffered, where brutality and violence painted everything in shades of red.

Friday, May 18, 2012

New Release this Weekend!!

I'm taking a fast break from my backlist to talk about a brand new tale that will be coming out this weekend. It is part of a new Amber PAX from the Allure side called Bad, Bad Boys. Don't we all love bad boys? And nothing is much badder than bikers. Still, you know me-- I almost always get a canine in there somewhere so this one was no exception. Actually I had a different story in mind when I signed up to participate in this PAX and had written close to 5,000 words when I realized it just flat wasn't working. I whined on our authors' loop and a friend suggested I needed to get back to the dogs. Well, I did not quite follow her specfic suggestion but dogs did the trick. And here you have Rez Dogs and Scooter Trash, vintage Dierdre O'Dare with some unusual guys, memorable dogs and plenty of adventure--and heat!

The phrase "Rez Dogs" came from a friend who had taught on theNavajo Reservation and told me about some of the sad dogs there, some of which she rescued and still has in her care. I am familiar with the Rez since my parents taught at Shiprock for a few years and two of my college roommates went on to teach in rez schools after graduating, one at Window Rock, the Navajo capital, and another near Page which is just off the Rez. I have a lot of sympathy for all the Native American peoples in the southwest and have grown up in proximity to various tribes and gone to school with soem of the kids. From this background, I often feature Native American characters. One hero in Rez Dogs is one of them.

Adult Excerpt and Info--Miss Bea and the Blacksmith

Miss Bea and the Blacksmith by Deirdre O'Dare (Dec 2010)

Bea McIntyre fell for an old scheme and ended up the mistress or actually the sex slave of a dissolute rancher. Escaping in the middle of the night with only a few small treasures, she has no real plan except to get away. When her mare bruises a hoof, she winds up at the blacksmith shop of Angus O’Toole. All she can offer him for his help is herself, but he seems to be satisfied with that bargain. When rancher Murdock sends his hired guns after her, things get dicey but Bea is no hothouse flower. Between her and Angus, they heat up the days and nights and also triumph over the black hats!

Excerpt: (This is shortly after Bea has taken refuge with Angus and is trying to make herself indispensible to him!)
After the dishes were done, she poured herself a cup of thick black coffee, then went back to the table. Although the stuff tasted terrible, she'd acquired the habit while at the Three Sixes. She now drank it regularly. Angus tapped the dottle out of his pipe, then set it back on the shelf. He regarded her seriously from across the table.

"As ye'll be noticing, there is but one bed. I'll bunk in the stable so's ye can use it while ye are here." He colored a bit as he spoke and mumbled the words.

Bea lowered her lids demurely. "I hate to be putting you out," she murmured, "when it looks like a very wide, very comfortable bed."

"It is that," Angus admitted. "Are ye saying ye'd na object to sharing it with me then?"

She smiled. "Aye, that is exactly what I am saying."

"B...b...but I'm not the sort of man Michael Murdoch is, ye know. I wouldn't feel right taking advantage of ye."

"Oh, but you wouldn't be, you see. The damage has been done. Maiden I no longer be. Who's to miss one slice from a cut cake? I have no compunctions about warming your bed in exchange for room and board until we shape a plan for where I am to go from here. However, if that does not suit..."

Although a flush stained Angus's sun-reddened cheeks an even warmer shade, he smiled as he frankly looked at her at last. "Aye, it suits, Miss Bea. It suits me right well indeed. If ye have no objections, then let's make an early night of it."

He picked up the kerosene lamp he'd lit as dusk deepened into darkness. Then he led the way to the bedroom with its broad and comfortable bed. Bea slipped past him to turn back the coverlet and the linen sheet before she began to unbutton the score of tiny buttons down the front of her dress. In between other chores, she had patched it as best she could so the rents were no longer as obvious. Still, the garment was in sorry shape. She'd have to come up with another dress soon.

Angus shed the loose shirt he had donned before coming in to supper. Then he stopped to stand watching her, an avid shine in his blue eyes. When she started to drop the bodice back off her shoulders, he came to her side.

"Here, let me do that."

He took the dress in his two big hands. With slow, exquisite gentleness, he drew it back off her shoulders, revealing her lacy chemise and corset cover. When he paused, she could hear him suck in a quick, hard breath.

"Sure and heaven's own angels can nay be more fair." Leaving the bodice to settle at her waist, he circled to stand before her, gazing down at the upper swells of her breasts shoved high by the corset. With one fingertip he traced along the edge of the garment, barely skimming her skin.

He shook his head slowly, as if in disbelief. "That something so fine should be here at my humble bedside. By all the saints, I never thought to see such a wonder."

His hands hovered for a moment before settling on her shoulders, curling around over the shape of them, his long fingers and broad palms covering her from neck to upper arms. When he bent to bring his face level with hers, the coffee and tobacco scents of his warm breath seemed to wrap around her in a sensuous cloud. She rose onto her tiptoes to press her lips against his.

His wide mouth tasted of milky coffee and the spices in the apple pie she had made. For the first instant, she was doing all the kissing. In a breath, that changed. She felt his hands shift as he raised one to cup the back of her head. The other dropped to rest just below her waist, bringing her closer with a gentle but steady pressure. He kissed with the same gusto and obvious pleasure with which he ate. He seemed to be savoring her lips, tasting and teasing with eager nips and licks while he nibbled, shifting to experience every possible angle and level of pressure.

After the first few seconds, she stopped thinking, even stopped comparing his technique to that of Murdoch and his friends. Angus was a great kisser, no question. She clutched at his wide shoulders, needing an anchor to keep some tenuous hold on reality.

Finally, he lifted his head, sucking in a great breath of air as he did. "Gawd's boots, Miss Bea, ye kiss just as sweet as ye cook! I'm fair dizzy with it, to be honest."

She laughed aloud, awash in delight. "You do no bad job of it either, sir. In fact, you could well be all-Ireland and all-American champion, I'm thinking."

He chuckled as he set her back from him, turned her around and went to work at her laces. As the corset loosened, she drew in a slow, relieved breath. She'd worn the dang thing for some thirty-six hours. It felt like heaven to breathe freely at last when the stiff garment fell away. Angus turned her back to face him. Then he stood for a long moment, gazing down at her.

At that instant she was thankful for her pert, high breasts and the natural fineness of her waist that needed no corset to cinch it in. Murdoch's leering gaze had always made her feel dirty and as if vinegar ants were crawling under her skin. Angus looked at her almost worshipfully, like someone might regard a beautiful piece of art work in a museum.

He shook his head slowly. "I can scarce believe it," he said, "that something so lovely should come to roost on my doorstep. Sure and I must be blessed, though what I have done to earn it, I canna say. Are ye sure about this, Miss Bea?"

Liquid fire poured over her at the heat in his blue gaze. Her legs felt weak, while she ached deep inside for the loving she knew he could give her. "Oh, my, yes. I couldn't be any more sure about anything! I'd just purely die if you left me now."

"Well, we can nay have that, can we now?" He moved quickly for all his size, snatching her up in a trice, swinging her around, only to settle her smack in the middle of that plump, inviting looking bed. She bounced just once when he let her go.

While he shucked off his boots and trousers, she untied the cords of her petticoat and drawers, preparing to wriggle free of them. When she looked up again after struggling with the knots, he was standing at the side of the bed, bare as the day he was born.

Every drop of blood in her body seemed to rush to her head and then drop to her nether regions, leaving her dizzy and weak.

Oh, my, he's definitely all man and a lot of man at that!

Springing erect from the coppery mat of hair at his crotch, his cock thrust out toward her, ruddy and big enough to make a stallion proud. He'd need no teasing or urging to make him ready, not like Murdoch, who was often so far gone to whiskey he could scarcely rise to the occasion. With a final twist of her hips, Bea shoved the drawers and petticoat down her legs, then drew free of them. After she tossed the garments aside, she reached for Angus.

Rolling, she came to her knees in front of him, reaching to catch him by the waist. His skin shivered beneath her touch, like a horse with a fly. For all the iron-solid muscle beneath his skin, it was fair where the sun did not hit him and smooth, almost soft as fine silk, save for the dusting of coppery hair.

She slipped her hands down his thighs, tickled by the strands of hair that decorated their sturdy length. Right in front of her, his cock bounced slightly as each beat of his heart sent blood coursing through it.

Oh, he's one fine figure of a man!

Again she had to compare Angus to Murdoch. Michael's skin had a dull, unclean color, a pasty, ashen hue. Beneath it, his flesh was doughy; muscles replaced by fat. By now, she'd be teasing him, trying to stroke his flaccid shaft into an erection, although he'd have lain down at once, as if standing were too much effort. She'd be worn out with the effort of arousing him before he got hard enough that she could straddle him and lower herself onto his rather stubby prick.

"Hold," Angus said in a gasp. He took a half step backward to draw free of her hands. "Ye'll have me shamed while ye're left unsatisfied at this rate."

He eased onto the bed, stretching out beside her, drawing her toward him, while his avid gaze swept the white length of her nude form. Slippery dampness moistened her slit and the insides of her thighs. She was more than ready for him. Still, it looked like he was determined to take his time.

Well, there's nothing wrong with slow, to a point. She'd give him time to explore her body with his hands and lips, if he chose to, not that she needed that much titillation to be ready for him, big as he was. She had learned, though, how drawing it out only made the final act so much more exciting. One of Murdoch's friends had been fairly young and virile. He'd even taken some time with her, savoring instead of a quick come and go, like the rest did. That time the act had been pleasant instead of a sweaty, sticky chore, so she knew it was possible.

The next release--Miss Bea and the Blacksmith

I guess it is no secret that I love the West. The old time westerns like Zane Grey and Louis L'Amour still resonate with me! And I adored the TV western crazy in the sixties--Maverick! The Rifleman! Wanted Dead or Alive! Wagon Train! Bonanza! Yes!!

So of course I have to write one now and then myself. My novel, Back to Tomorrow, written as Gwynn Morgan, is one foray into the old west of Tombstone in the 1880s. Miss Bea's story is another.

It came about becasue on one list a bunch of writers and some readers were talking about unlikely heroes and blacksmiths came up. I'm not sure why except I guess we tend to view them as muscle-bound "Hoss Cartright" type guys that are maybe not the sharpest tool in the shed and so not great romantic hero material. But when things like that flash past me, I tend to take them as a dare! By golly, I said, I will create a blacksmith that is a great hero! It took me awhile. I had started it about the second year I was writing for Amber Heat but it got put on the back burner as I got more into gay romance tales and other contemporary stories which generally seemed more popular. Still, it wanted to be written and I got back to it after awhile. As often happens, the vignette of Miss Bea running away was the first part that came to me. I already guessed a blacksmith would help her but I wasn't sure how that would come about. Enter Angus and once I saw him, I was hooked! Yes, a real Man, a real Hero!! I think it all came together pretty well!

I just heard from another writer who is doing a blacksmith in a future novel of hers, a kind of steam punk erotic romaance, she told me. I will have more to say on that later but I was thrilled to learn she enjoyed Miss Bea's tale and is also writing one! An excerpt and a peek at the yummy cover are coming up in just a minute! But this is the story behind the story!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Runes of Revelation, excerpt, adult m/m

Runes of Revelation by Deirdre O'Dare (Nov 2010)

Blurb: As head of the Border Patrol’s Paranormal Operations Unit, Clay Chiles has found a place where he can function and a surrogate family to replace the one he never truly had. He keeps hidden a lot of secrets and both fears and longs for the day he may be able to take that one long step out of solitude and darkness into love and light. Before he can do that, he has to face some surprising facts about himself and deal with some horrific enemies. Though not weak man, alone he’ll never have the strength to confront all those demons. Who can help him there?

Arondel Wanderer is a son of the ancient Elven royal clan but far enough from the throne to be expendable. He obeys his queen’s orders to visit earth and find what is going wrong there. One task he faces is to contact and recruit a human keystone in the desperate effort to stop an invasion of ancient evil which could corrupt the elves’ original home beyond redemption. Aron, long a loner and solitary emissary from Elvenheim, never expected to find his soul mate on this mission but surprises, both good and bad, have always been part of his long and adventurous life. He’ll take anything good he is given and once he sights the partner he always wanted, the most extreme danger is not enough to deter him.

Excerpt: (This is early in the story when Clay first meets Aron)
The first glow of sunrise barely illuminated the drawn drapes on Clay's east-facing bedroom window. Even for him that was an early hour to awaken. He stretched and rolled over in bed, disturbing his sleek, tawny cat, who sprang down with a soft meow of protest.

"Sorry, Hathor. You usually sleep on the other side."

He twisted to set his feet to the floor, stood and strode to draw open the drapes. There were not enough clouds for a real sunrise, but a few streaks of gold and rose shone in the brightening sky. One brilliant speck of light hovered a few degrees above the dusky horizon. Mercury. Is the planet in retrograde now or not? He reminded himself to check.

Although Clay wasn't sure he believed astrology, he was long past the point of pooh-poohing anything. At any rate, Mercury retrogrades tended to coincide with all sorts of troubles and disruptions. He'd seen enough strange happenings that most folks would deem rankest fantasy to accept virtually anything could be possible.

He took a leak, glowered at his reflection in the mirror dimly visible by the night-light and turned to head downstairs for a hot cup of coffee. He'd set the brewmatic machine's timer for five and since it was now almost five-thirty, coffee should be ready.

Although he slept in the nude, he seldom wandered around the house without something on, even though none of his windows were placed where anyone was likely to see him. Grabbing his bottle green velour robe off the bathroom door, he shrugged it on and tied the sash as he took the stairs to the ground floor two per stride.

"How you can stand that abominable shit coffee is beyond me."

He skidded to an abrupt halt in the doorway at the unexpected greeting. "What the fuck? Who are you and what are you doing in my kitchen at oh-dark-thirty in the morning?"

The stranger rose from a chair, carefully set his cup on the tile-topped table and held out a hand. "I'm Aron. You're going to have to put up with me for a bit, Clay. We have some business to discuss."

"You seem to know who I am, but damned if I know you. And I wouldn't forget--you aren't exactly the kind of man to vanish in a crowd."

"I'm Aron Wanderer. We haven't met, but I know some relatives of yours, like the father you never knew. You're Clayton Chiles, head of the Paranormal Operations Unit of the U.S. Border Patrol. I've come to offer you some support. Things have been getting worse lately, haven't they?"

Clay sensed something uncannily familiar about the tall, slender man, but still felt sure they had never met. "Aron? Where are you from and who sent you?"

"You're suspicious. I can understand that, but I assure you, I come as a friend, an ally, even a distant kinsman. Maevelle, the reigning queen of Elvenheim sent me. She's a distant cousin to us both, a just ruler, but also hard as cold iron when need be. She's been following the situation here and has become concerned. Even though we've been gone for eons, the Elven still feel a bond with Earth. We don't want to see the current invasion succeed, but without more help, it will. You know that."

Clayton sighed. "Yes, it's looking more and more likely. These new critters, whatever they are, seem to be the worst yet. I'm gathering all the powered folk I can locate to be agents for our side, but there aren't enough and they aren't all as strong and confident as they need to be. I have some outstanding people on my team, but it's looking more like our best won't be enough."

Aron nodded. "No, it won't be. Sit and have your coffee. There isn't yet an emergency, but we need to make some quick plans. I hope you didn't have anything critical scheduled this morning because you'll have to cancel or postpone it."

Irritation flashed through Clayton, but he contained it. Changed plans were more the rule than the exception lately. He'd deal with it.

He poured his coffee and sat down opposite his surprising guest. "Aron, I'm no Elf," he said. "What kind of cockamamie bullshit is that?"

Aron smiled. "Are you sure? Did you know anything about your father at all?"

Clay shook his head. "Not really. I only know the sorry son of a bitch knocked up my mother and disappeared. People were not very tolerant of unwed mothers forty years ago. She ended up committing suicide when I was barely old enough to remember her. That left me to be raised by her sister and my grandparents. It was really fun to be a weird bastard kid in a little east Texas town."

Aron shook his head, what looked like a trace of sympathy on his narrow face. "You're saying my name like the Biblical name, not mine. Actually, it's short for Arondel. Think of a capital R there with the A almost silent. Anyway, your father didn't leave on purpose. He had no choice. He intended to come back to live with your mother and help raise you, but that chance was not given to him. Still, he has watched you all your life."

"I wouldn't go across the street to see the em-effer. I don't want to know anything about him." A slight chill ran down Clay's spine. He knew magic and otherworldly influences when he met them. They clung all around this tall stranger, but he took no comfort in that. "I'm no elf," he repeated. "That's crazy."

"What do you think I am?" Aron tossed his head so his shoulder-length hair separated to reveal the fine points atop his large ears. "Do I look like an ordinary human?"

Clay took another gulp of coffee and slammed his cup down. "I don't fucking know. I don't even want to know. Yeah, I've always been odd, but I'm not sure I even believe in elves!"

Aron smiled. "You will. There's no hurry. You do believe in the invasion of real other-world aliens, don't you?"

Clay drew a deep breath and let it out slowly. "Yes, I don't have much choice. I've seen and dealt with them."

"And some of your people are not fully one hundred percent human either, you know. Take Alex, your raven shifter. There's old Sidhe blood in his veins and in those of Rhys Davis, too. The Sidhe are our kin, a branch of Elvenkind."

Clay did not answer, although the other man's words made a strange kind of sense. He didn't want to listen, much less believe, but he also knew when he needed to be open-minded. This was one of those times. He could accept all of it except perhaps the part about his father.

"It shouldn't be so shocking to realize you carry the same strain, or a related one. We need that, as much as we can gather, to combat the new invaders. That's why I'm here. Other Elven warriors will come and assist if you'll have us. "

Clay exhaled, almost a sigh. "Yes, I've gathered all the people I can find with wild talents and unusual powers but they're too few. Humanity has stamped out anything we term paranormal pretty thoroughly. It's been a millennia-long witch-hunt. Are you telling me the gifted folk are all of Elven stock?"

Aron shook his head. "Oh, no, there are many other sources for magic and powers. They crop up in every race and kind of human. I believe all humankind had them at one time, but they've been allowed to atrophy, been rejected and scorned to the point they're almost extinct. Just like your own case." He left that statement hanging for a few seconds and then went on.

"Those folk deemed more primitive by you moderns seem to show more of it now--people in remote Africa and Latin America, the South Sea Islands, some of the Native Americans. The greatest concentration seems to be in the Celts even yet, although in most of them I think it's Elven blood."

When Aron reached across the table and laid his long-fingered hand atop Clay's, a jolt of strange energy flashed through him, akin to an electric shock. His heart sped up and his cock twitched. It was not quite wholly sexual, but certainly a bit of that was there. He wanted to draw back and yet he could not.

"You need to trust, to believe, cousin. You are one of us. You have powers, such as the ability to sense others who have them, do you not? And I'd wager you've got others as well. Things you have kept hidden and been almost ashamed to acknowledge, no?"

"Grandma and Grandpa said all that stuff came from Satan. I learned to hide it from them and others until it got to be a habit. I grew up in Bible Belt, USA, Aron. Anything unusual was suspect. We may have quit burning witches, but the distrust and fear is still strong."

Aron pressed his hand and then drew back. "I know. I've been coming back to the earth for centuries and I've seen these things. I can give you a few days to think on this, but only a few. The danger is too close, growing too fast. We must be ready to act very soon."

Clay found himself nodding as he fought the feeling of bereavement when Aron broke the touch. Besides the excitement and energy, he had found comfort in their brief connection.

"I know that much, have known it for some time. I have about three dozen special agents now, men and women I trust completely, but the invaders are coming in faster, with more new tricks and weapons. They're becoming harder to find. It seems they're learning to blend in with humanity and pretend to be normal. I'm worried. Hell, I'm scared shitless. If you're willing and able to help and bring others, I can't turn you away."

Aron stood. "Well and good. I'll be back in a few of your days. Go on about your business. I'm not trying to take over this effort or make decisions for you. That's not my job. Your president and other high officials entrusted it to you. I'm sure they had good reason."

Clay stood and took a hesitant step around the table, holding out his arms. Aron took the cue and came to him. They embraced for a few seconds, just long enough for Clay to feel as if he had suddenly come home. In a few short moments, this stranger who claimed he was an ancient Elf felt like kinfolk, a partner, even a lover. That frightened him, but also somehow felt too true to dismiss.

Time for a new excerpt and story behind the story!

My next release, Runes of Revelation,  was part of the Thin Green Line series, picking up after Beyond the Shadows and Wings of Love. Clayton Chiles had made a cameo appearance in Wings and I knew he needed his own story. He's a composite character and a kind of bassakward tribute to someone I knew many years ago. That guy was as straight as could be, quite the ladies' man in fact, so it seemed a twist of poetic justice to make him gay! It's a private joke, really, and I suspect he is long gone from this earth and could care less now but anyway that was the start of this character. Of course there were other influences as well, and no character I have ever created is a sole and direct representation of any one person!

I loved Tolkein's elves and they feel so much more right to me than the scaled down pixie creatures of most fairy tales and 'cutesy' versions we usually see in literature and such from the last couple of hundred years. I feel sure,based in part on my study of the ancient Celts and their deities and demi-gods, that there was a race of super-human beings who were here at one time and left, maybe in dismay or disgust at the new race taking over the world! Maybe they had no choice and the parallel worlds split and diverged. I do not know but somewhere they exist and I am confident of that! I found the elven characters in The Lord of the Rings movies believable, maybe not quite as I visualized but closer than I might have expected. But I do not see Orlando Bloom as Aron. Not quite!

Years ago I worked on a fantasy romance about a magical male being who served as a guardian and closer of space/time gates and the earth girl who came to partner with and love him. The tale never quite gelled and is eternally consigned to that proverbial box under the bed but the idea stuck with me. Lo and behold, here came Arondel, emerging into the contemporary world with a mission and stern directives as to what he was supposed to do. But as so often happens, cupid's arrows go against every rule and sometimes manage to bond the most unlikely pairs. Actually though, Clay and Aron are not so unlikely at all ,even if they do not recognize it at first. 

I had so much fun with this one and the sequel that came out almost a year later, Runes of Redemption. In passing, pale gray eyes fascinate me and I've always connect them with the elven kind or fairie, with a mesmerizing power and an eldritch beauty that is nigh irresistable. Perhaps all elves do not have gray eyes but I think many of them do... And not the changeable hazel-gray of a number of humans but a constant color that does not reflect blue or green or violet just because one wears it. Mine are that kind of gray but then any elf blood (the Irish and Welsh do have a trace!!) from long ago has become very diluted over the eons.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The Wild Bunch: Stace; adult excerpt, m/m

The Wild Bunch: Stace by Deirdre O'Dare 
(BTW I adore the cover! Aren't those eyes just awesome?)

Blurb: Stace, Spark and Cass have been best buddies since their high school rodeo days. Now they work for a very special guest ranch that caters to gay men who need a break and escape from their high stress fast lane lives. Rainbow Ranch has a reputation for providing precisely the Wild West adventures each guest needs and desires with the cowboys of their hottest dreams. Stace does not intend to fall for a guest—it’s never happened before. Why now? What is so unique about this one?

Jared Langford runs a cutting edge edutainment media company and wishes he could put aside the burdens of management and be valued for himself and not his prestige. He has grown to fear that’s an empty dream. Persuaded to take a week long vacation on a guest ranch in New Mexico, he finds exactly the reprieve he needs and all the thrills he could hope for. The experiences may just turn his whole life around and set him on a very different course. .

Jared hunched on the log bench staring into the campfire. Is this vacation going to be what I need or not? Even knowing the notion to be stupid, he felt naked without his cell phone. A dozen drastic scenarios lurched though his mind. What if any one of a thousand potential catastrophes happened at Montague and no one could reach him?

Those nagging worries dampened any pleasure he might have found in the scrumptious steak with all the cowboy fixings, in the amusing tall tales interspersed with guitar solos played by the handsome Latino cowboy and the old and new country ballads warbled by the tall, blond wrangler. Congenial company, a good meal and pleasant if not stellar entertainment. What more could he possibly want? That was a question he wasn't sure if he even wanted to answer.

He almost jumped out of his skin when a firm hand settled on his shoulder. "Don't look like you're havin' fun here, Jared. What do you say we take a little ride through the hills and maybe find some other entertainment?"

He glanced up at Stace, the wrangler who'd picked him up at the airport and seemed to have made Jared his special charge.

Jared shrugged. "Sure, why not?" He knew he'd be ridiculously petty to hold the cell phone confiscation against the cowboy, who no doubt had only followed ranch rules. If Jared had a beef, it would be with the absent owner and boss. Maybe he'd have a chance to confront that man later. For now, he didn't mind some more time in the handsome and pleasant young man's company. Who knew where it might lead?

Stace led Jared to the picket line where their mounts had been resting and untied both horses. He waited while Jared mounted the buckskin before he swung up on the Paint.

"Don't have too far to go, just up on this ridge here," the cowboy said. After a moment, he went on. "You familiar with any Native American customs?"

"Not too many. My company has released a couple of documentary presentations, but I wasn't involved in the actual filming and recording. Never had time to look into that stuff, although the old west and all its traditions interested me when I was younger."

"Maybe you'd enjoy spending a night in a real authentic Lakota tipi then and a little taste of the ghost dance. Just happens one of my great-grandpas was a buffalo soldier who took up with a Native woman, daughter of one of the scouts who worked with the U.S. Cavalry back in those days. That means I have a little Apache in me along with my African ancestry."

Despite his sense of gloom, Jared could not help a shimmer of interest. Now that he thought about it, he could see a trace of Indian in Stace's striking face. Maybe this would be a real adventure after all.

It took them about half an hour to reach the top of the ridge. On a small flat there, a traditional hide tipi stood, the doorway facing eastward to overlook a panoramic view of southern New Mexico. Stace moved quickly to settle the horses, brought the saddles inside and then turned to Jared.

"Get naked, paleface. If you plan to become a real blood brother, you need to dedicate yourself to the native spirits in a ghost dance."

For a breath, Jared hesitated. Then he undressed, stacking his clothes neatly to one side.

Meanwhile, Stace lit a small fire in a stone ring at the center of the tipi where the smoke rose cleanly through the opening at the top. By its flickering glow, Jared glanced around the interior. If the structure held anything of the twenty-first century, he could not see it. A few striped blankets lay folded on what looked like real hair-on hides. To one side, some clay pots sat near a couple of primitive looking bows and quivers of arrows. A leather shield painted with crude buffalo and horse images leaned against the wall.

Then Jared noticed a tripod toward the back. Three stout poles had been lashed together to create three-cornered shape that barely fit beneath the tipi's towering peak. Several ropes or thongs hung from the central binding. Stace shoved him toward the area beneath the poles. Grasping both of Jared's arms, he spun him around and then lashed him firmly to two of the tripod legs.

Taking two of the dangling thongs that ended in spring clips, the cowboy snapped one on each of Jared's nipples. The pinch, though a bit painful, also aroused Jared. His cock sprang to life. Nothing he could do would stop it. He glanced at the cowboy to see how he reacted.

Face impassive, Stace reached to collect two more thongs, these ending in neat nooses. The first thong he looped over Jared's balls and drew up firmly. Then he grasped Jared's cock in one hand and slid a noose over the tip, drawing it snug right behind the head Again, Jared felt mild pain, but it was more exciting than distressing.

"What the fuck?"

"Ghost dance," Stace answered. "In the old days we'd have cut your skin and put bone skewers through it and then slowly tightened each of the thongs until you were dancin' on your toes. We're more civilized now. Stay put. I'll be back in a little while." He stooped to gather Jared's clothes before he pushed through the crossed panels of leather at the doorway and disappeared.

For a split second, panic rushed through Jared. What if he doesn't come back? What if he just leaves me here? Even if I can get loose, I'm bare-assed and I sure don't want to try to ride that way! And that's supposing he leaves me a horse...

Although it seemed like hours, Jared realized probably no more than twenty minutes elapsed before Stace returned. When the cowboy entered the tipi this time, he wore only a leather breechclout, a string of beads and claws around his neck and a beaded headband with three feathers stuck into it. If they were not real eagle feathers, someone had deftly dyed them to look like they were. Jared's breath caught in his throat. If Stace looked good in his regular cowboy attire, he looked a hundred times better now.

Barefoot, Stace made no sound as he prowled a circle in the tipi and finally came to stand directly in front of Jared.

Jared tried not to flinch as Stace reached past him. The cowboy gave each of the four thongs a swift jerk so they vibrated like guitar strings. Jared hadn't realized he'd sagged a bit as his legs got tired. His bound arms took part of his weight, but the thongs had drawn tight. Pain and excitement sizzled along his nerves. The old phrase "hurt so good" flashed across his mind. He sensed himself totally at the other man's mercy, a realization that both thrilled and shocked him. Jared Langford, arrogant executive, could no longer even pretend to be in charge.

Yes! This is what I've hoped and longed for...maybe not this specific scenario, but the feeling, the atmosphere. He shivered with anticipation. He had no idea what would happen next, but he suspected it would be arousing, titillating, even overpowering beyond his wildest dreams. Almost holding his breath, he waited.

Stace looked him up and down dispassionately and yet with a hint of interest. The cowboy's dick had risen well past half-mast, bobbing slightly under the soft suede with his breath and heartbeat, just as Jared's twitched against the restraint of the thong. After a moment, Stace shoved aside the concealing strip of leather, baring his impressive masculine package. The dangling russet suede set off his powerful cock and balls in a half-framed vignette. Jared couldn't take his gaze from the sight. Heat flashed through his body as he waited, impatient yet resigned. I am not in charge. I have no say over what happens or when it happens. Yes!

After long seconds, Stace smiled. His eyes caught sparks from the firelight and his even white teeth flashed against the darkness of his face. "So, big man, what do you think I should do with you? Still mad about your phone? You have no need for it now, you know."

Jared nodded. "I know. I'm not as big or as indispensible as I thought I was. The sun will come up in the morning regardless of where I am or what I'm doing. Right now I'm your captive slave, prisoner of a fierce warrior of the plains."

Stace smiled again. "You catch on fast for a paleface." He reached out and slashed the thongs binding Jared's arms to the poles. For a moment, Jared wavered. With that support gone, more strain fell to the thongs on his nipples and cock. He felt the bite of the clips and the pressure on his prick and balls as the nooses tightened. He still could do nothing to relieve them. He probably could have grabbed hold of the two poles where he'd been tied, but somehow he could not find the will to try.

"I think I want this prisoner to suck my cock," Stace said. He reached over Jared's head again and loosened the knot to let the thongs slacken. "On your knees."

Jared knelt, feeling the four thongs slip enough to let him down, yet their hold did not totally release. Once on his knees, he found his face just even with Stace's crotch. That magnificent mahogany cock seemed to be reaching for him. As if hypnotized by the sight, Jared lifted his right hand to grasp it as he leaned forward to touch his lips to the single shimmering drop on the tip. The liquid sparkled jewel-bright in the firelight. He captured the drop with his tongue, then widened his mouth to slip over the crown. He nearly had to unhinge his jaws like a snake's to take it all in. What an incredible dong!

Stace rested one hand on the top of Jared's head, fingers spreading across his skull. "If you do a good job, white man, I may not have to punish you."

Time for more story behind and excerpts!

The next release in the two years I am covering before I move on to other things was the first in my series titled The Wild Bunch. At first Amber Allure was going to do a 'picture inspired' cowboy group as we did with the working stiffs and several other evocative themes. I began to play around with an idea or two before the series was killed. By then it was too late for me and I went ahead with my plan.

It's no secret that I adore cowboys, at least the fanciful version most of us carry from beloved old western novels, movies and TV shows and some romantic rodeo stars or heroes from our youth! I was definitely cowboy/country when neither one was cool! I had a huge crush on Casey Tibbs, a long-ago PRCA champ. At about twelve I dreamed of becoming a barrel racer and marrying him. I was heart broken when he instead married the daughter of South Dakota governor and Medal of Honor winner Joe Foss! But life went on and my fickle heart too. It's amusing now. Anyway since the story--which grew into three related tales--was for the Allure line, my cowboy hero had to be gay.

Another western phenomenon, less popular now perhaps than in the last century, is the guest ranch or guide and outfitter ranch where guests get a taste of exciting western and outdoor adventures. The name Rainbow Ranch came to mind as the GLBT emblem and a setting where the facility catered to jet setting gay men who sought a getaway and some amorous adventures with sexy cowboys as well as the western ambience. From that term, I also suddenly visualized three buddies who were now working there and they too were a racial/ethnic rainbow, one being African American, one Anglo and one Latino.

The first one to step out of the imaginative haze and introduce himself was Eustace "Stace" Jones, the black cowboy. The three were all as footloose and carefree as tumble weeds--until one special guest grabbed them by the heart as well as other organs and changed their ways! For Stace this happened to be Jared Longford, a successful multimedia executive from California. From that point on, the story took wings and handed me all sorts of surprises. Before it was done I knew each of the three buddies would have to have his own tale and there would be another subplot running through the series. And so it came to be!

I set my imaginary ranch in Grant County, New Mexico not far from the Gila and Leopold Wilderness areas and in a region that I find very appealing. There are some guest ranches and outfitters along there but none like Rainbow Ranch that I know of! No animals were harmed or killed in the creation of this story and its companions and only a bit of truth and reality might have been mangled by my over-active imagination! These were fun stories but always with the twist of adventure I cannot seem to leave out of any tale.. The two pictures I took a couple of years ago on a visit back thru the area and that's the setting I envision--the ranch lies up near the foot of the mountains shown here!