Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Assassin's Retirement Chapter 39, Part 1 #TheGentleman #IONSeries #polyromance #blogstory

Welcome back to Assassin's Retirement!

This blog story is written weekly (completely pantsed, so sometimes even I'm surprised at the left hand turns) in 1000 word sprints. If you are new to the story, scroll to the bottom to the Table of Content.

Copyright Lexi Ander

Chapter 39

Alonzo appeared in the mouth of the hallway looking good—healthy good since Zane thought Alonzo was handsome not matter what. But he’d lost the sickly cast to his skin, and his dark eyes shone brightly, and when Alonzo grinned Zane’s thoughts stumbled to a halt. Passing by Skyld, Alonzo affectionately patted his ass, making Skyld practically jump out of his skin. Zane laughed aloud, loving the heated look Alonzo gave him before delivering a scorching kiss. He wanted so much more, but Alonzo pulled away. “Good morning, mi Rey.”

Zane licked his lips. “Good morning. Are you hungry?” Alonzo’s eyes blazed and his gaze dropped back to Zane’s lips in answer.

“I’m hungry,” Raine said, suddenly there next to Alonzo, not quite pushing him out of the way but definitely radiating the need for attention.

Zane wrapped a palm around the nape of Raine’s neck and pulled him in for a kiss, loving how Raine surrendered to him. When he pulled away, a smug satisfaction filled him with how Raine panted, his lips lightly swollen from the thorough kiss.

“I can start making breakfast,” Skyld said after clearing his throat.

Raine grinned devilishly before turning and prowling toward Skyld. Zane’s brother watched Raine with a wistfulness in his gaze that turned to surprise when Raine kissed him, practically climbing Skyld like a tree and forcing Skyld to wrap his arms around him and lean against the wall for balance.

Zane turned back to regard the mantles. He didn’t want to shut them up in the panic room again, but they would need the table for breakfast when everyone woke, which wouldn’t be long from now. He could hear stirring and low voices coming from the hallway.

“We can move them to the coffee table for the time being,” Alonzo said, a hand still on Zane’s waist.

“We can stay?” came a squeaky mantle voice. Zane grinned in response, noticing that Alonzo didn’t react. It would be weird talking to the mantles when nobody but Skyld could hear the other side of the conversation.

“You can,” Zane confirmed. “Do you mind if Alonzo helps me move you?”

The was only a slight hesitation. “We don’t mind.”

After Zane nodded at Alonzo, they moved the mantles to the square coffee table and to one of the armchairs since the table was a bit small to hold them all. A few asked to be placed on the oversized fireplace mantel. That was the point that Zane became sure they could ‘see’, but he was polite and didn’t pepper them with twenty questions.

He returned to the kitchen with Alonzo and they worked together to put together a hearty breakfast. Raine only let go of Skyld when Cord sauntered in wearing a sleeveless T-shirt that showed off the tattoos that went from knuckles to shoulders and a pair of jeans so tight nothing was left to the imagination. Cord took Raine’s place and proceeded to kiss the breath from Skyld. Zane watched from the corner of his eye with both bemusement and satisfaction as each member of Crimson Comet greeted Skyld.

Prince was dressed in tailored pants and a dark-green button-up vest that shimmered just so in the light, revealing the twining vines of ivy embroidered with silk thread. He waited for Cord to come up for air before imperiously squeezing between Cord and Skyld to have his turn giving Skyld a rousing good morning kiss. Raine took Anson’s dark face in his hands and brushed his lips gently over Anson’s. Midnight’s wet black hair was combed away from his face, the ends curling against his neck. He interrupted Prince’s assault on Skyld mouth by stealing Skyld away, shifting Skyld around as if they danced. Xander moved behind Skyld creating a Skyld sandwich with Midnight.  It was a wonder that Skyld wasn’t a puddle of goo after having his tonsils checked by six of the sexiest men on the continent.

Starting with Prince whose eyes sought out Zane, they came for him and Alonzo. Prince’s saunter turned into a hunting prowl that heated Zane’s blood. He got lost in a haze of lust, forgetting about the food as he was passed from one person to the next. Each kiss was different, unique, and he hoped that every morning started out like this because damn, what a thing to get used to.

The last to greet Zane was Cord who wanted more than a mere kiss, his mouth moving over Zane’s chin and down his neck. They were jostled innocently enough since they were in an inconvenient spot next to the stove. Cord’s head snapped up, his upper lip lifting to reveal teeth that should not be that sharp and his blue eyes glowed with an ethereal light. Tendrils of dark gray smoke trailed from his nostrils. Zane gave a soft grunt as Cord’s grip around him unexpectedly tightened, not painfully but enough that Zane couldn’t easily get away—or for anyone to take him. When Cord opened his mouth, instead of speaking he emitted a growl that sounded jurassic, primal, a deadly warning that everyone in the kitchen took seriously and backed away hastily. Small scales formed on Cord’s forehead, his grendal making itself known.

Instead of pulling away, Zane pressed harder against Cord and took his mouth, distracting Cord’s dragon from doing anything that Cord would undoubtedly regret. The rumble remained steady but changed to something that sounded more like a purr. Reaching up, he gripped Cord’s blond hair in his fist and pulled firmly. Cord’s eyes pooped open, the dragon still there, lurking just under Cord’s skin.


“Mine,” Zane said, the one word filled with absolute authority. Cord’s arms tightened again and Zane bit Cord’s bottom lip, drawing blood in retaliation. That seemed to satisfy the grendal, and he whined, blinking rapidly. The dragon receded and Cord sagged but Zane held him close, not letting him fall. “You are mine,” Zane whispered in Cord’s ear. “Your dragon is mine.”


Table of Contents

Chapter One - Retirement
Chapter Two - Normal is not supposed to be this hard
Chapter Three - Caught
Chapter Four - Crimson Comet
Chapter Five - Mountain Magic
Chapter Six, Part 1 - Harbinger of a Nightmare
Chapter Six, Part 2 -
Chapter Seven, Part 1 - Stolen Answers
Chapter Seven, Part 2 -
Chapter Eight, Part 1 - No such thing as heroes
Chapter Eight, Part 2 -
Chapter Nine, Part 1 - Dead is supposed to be... dead
Chapter Nine, Part 2 -
Chapter Ten, Part 1 - Gathering Allies
Chapter Ten, Part 2
Chapter Eleven - Combustible
Chapter Twelve - Standing His Ground
Chapter Thirteen - Choices
Chapter Fourteen, Part 1
Chapter Fourteen, Part 2
Chapter Fifteen, Part 1 - To kill, or not to kill
Chapter Fifteen, Part 2
Chapter Sixteen - Maricoxi Guardians
Chapter Seventeen - Coincidence?
Chapter Eighteen, Part One - Guns Ablazin'
Chapter Eighteen, Part Two
Chapter Nineteen, Part One - Reckoning
Chapter Nineteen, Part Two
Chapter Twenty - Mercy
Chapter Twenty-One
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part Three
Chapter Twenty-Three
Chapter Twenty-Four
Chapter Twenty-Five, Part 1
Chapter Twenty-Five, Part 2
Chapter Twenty-Six
Chapter Twenty-Seven, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Seven, Part two
Chapter Twenty-Eight, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Eight, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part Three
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part Four
Chapter Thirty, Part One
Chapter Thirty, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-One
Chapter Thirty-One, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Two
Chapter Thirty-Three, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Three, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Three, Part Three
Chapter Thirty-Four, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Four Part Two
Chapter Thirty Five
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part Three
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part Four
Chapter Thirty-Seven
Chapter Thirty-Eight, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Eight, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Eight, Part Three
Chapter Thirty-Nine, Part One


Thank you for stopping by and reading!!

Saturday, April 25, 2020

What's on the Reading Radar? #WishList #TBR

This week went by quickly. I'll probably make you cringe if I say that I want the week back... LOL! Sorry, I do.


Title: Terror by Moonlight
Series: Critter Catchers, 1
Author: Hank Edwards
Length: 288 pages

Genre: Mystery / Romance / Gay /

Notes: Binge reading sounds awesome.

Blurb: Cody Bower and Demetrius Singleton have been friends for over twenty years even though they are polar opposites. Cody is tall, handsome, athletic, and straight, and Demetrius is average height, more of a thinker, and gay. They have started an animal control business together and have to figure out how to be business partners without letting it affect their friendship, but that’s the least of their problems. When one of their first clients ends up brutally murdered in what appears to be an animal attack, the two realize something big and dangerous is stalking their tiny town of Parson’s Hollow, and it’s up to them to catch it before it kills again.


Title: Chained
Series: Bureau, 4
Author: Kim Fielding
Length: 137 pages

Genre: Romance / Paranormal

Notes: 

Blurb: An agent for the Bureau of Trans-Species Affairs? That’s the best job in the world. And it’s enough for Terry Brandt, who doesn’t need personal relationships complicating his life. His newest assignment puts him undercover, investigating a Hollywood agent who may have some evil tricks up his sleeve.

Edge is not the man he appears to be. Although he’s a member of the Hollywood agent’s security staff, his true situation is darker and deeper than that. Ordered to seduce the new prospect, Edge finds himself caught in conflicting loyalties.

Haunted by their pasts and tied up in secrets, neither Terry nor Edge can afford to allow passion to interfere with duty. And with danger dogging them, it’s impossible to envision a future together.




Title: Bone Traders
Series: Sellswords & Spellweavers, 1
Author: Rachel Ford
Length: 230 pages

Genre: Fantasy / Action & Adventure / Norse Mythos / 

Notes: 

Blurb: A missing giant. A sinister conspiracy. A decision that will change the fate of a jarldom.

The bone trade is big business. Black market buyers will offer many silvers for fresh giant bone, to carve into charms or use in dark enchantments.

When cloaked men kidnap the giant Njal Frostborn, everyone knows why. He's destined to be murdered and sold in that terrible trade.

His best friend, apprentice wizard Idun Wintermoon, is determined to save him from that terrible fate. But to do so, she must defy the head of her order, and face powers far beyond her ability. To survive, she's going to need an ally. Luckily for her, Lissette Forlatt - a down-on-her-luck sellsword - is on the case. Together, they'll brave worse than the elements and rogue mages in their quest to save Njal. What they discover might shake the jarldom to its core.

If they live long enough to tell the story.



Title: Silence Fallen
Series: Mercy Thompson, 10
Author: Patricia Briggs
Length: 379 pages

Genre: Paranormal / Romantic Elements

Notes: I'm in the middle of a re-read of this series since a new Mercy book has released. I bought the last release then hoarded it for later. LOL! Whoops. This series and the Alpha and Omega series are such rich stories.  

Blurb: Attacked and abducted in her home territory, Mercy finds herself in the clutches of the most powerful vampire in the world, taken as a weapon to use against alpha werewolf Adam and the ruler of the Tri-Cities vampires. In coyote form, Mercy escapes—only to find herself without money, without clothing, and alone in the heart of Europe... 

Unable to contact Adam and the rest of the pack, Mercy has allies to find and enemies to fight, and she needs to figure out which is which. Ancient powers stir, and Mercy must be her agile best to avoid causing a war between vampires and werewolves, and between werewolves and werewolves. And in the heart of the ancient city of Prague, old ghosts rise...




Title: Warrior Wench
Series: (The Asarlaí Wars Book 1)
Author: Marie Andreas
Length: 368 pages

Genre: Sci-Fi / Action & Adventure / Let's Blow Everything Up? /

Notes: I'm reading this book for the title alone!

Blurb: Vaslisha Tor Dain is a mercenary starship captain with a few simple rules: A good ship is better than a great man, in case of confusion always err on the side of blowing someone's head off, and never fall for a telepath or a member of her crew.
All of those are about to bite her in the behind.

Vas’s life takes a turn for the worse when she comes back to her crew after what should have been a two week pleasure trip to find out she’s actually been gone a month and has no memory of missing time. Her beloved ship, The Victorious Dead, has been sold for scrap and its pieces scattered throughout the galaxy. In addition, there are unmarked ships blowing apart entire planets and the Commonwealth government can’t, or won’t, stop them.

And that’s just her first day back.

Vas has to fight her crew, the Commonwealth, and a mysterious cadre of warrior monks to get her ship back and save a universe that may not want to be saved.



Thank you for stopping by and reading!!

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Assassin's Retirement Chapter 38, Part 3 #TheGentleman #IONSeries #polyromance #blogstory

Welcome back to Assassin's Retirement!

This blog story is written weekly (completely pantsed, so sometimes even I'm surprised at the left hand turns) in 1000 word sprints. If you are new to the story, scroll to the bottom to the Table of Content.

Copyright Lexi Ander

Chapter 38 continued...


“All scions are different,” the mantle interjected. “How they view the world, their code of honor changes over the years. Our creator infused us with purpose and sometimes that purpose is not shared by the scion. We may leave that scion, but another may find them worthy.”

“And if that happens then the scion leaves the house of their bloodline and enter the house that their mantle belongs to,” Skyld supplied.

Zane was reminded of the poem of Beowulf and frowned. “Can mantles be destroyed in combat?”

“Yes,” said the mantles together.

“When the scion does not heed the mantle and acts contrary to the mantle’s set purpose or if the cause is unjust, then the mantle becomes mundane,” Skyld said gravely. “Such scions who have turned from the path are never allowed to wear a mantle again. The pieces are returned to the god who created the mantle. If the mantle wishes to return to the scion bloodline, then the god mends the mantle. In the case of our bloodline, we lost two mantles who did not wish to return.”

“Beowulf?” Zane wasn’t sure he guessed correctly considering he was unsure the poem of Beowulf had any basis in fact or history.

“Yes, he had three mantles. The helmet is still with the family, but Hrunting the sword and the mail-shirt were both damaged and returned to their creator.” Skyld’s eyes blazed with anger and he petted one of his leather wristbands protectively.

Zane was angry too at the reckless and thoughtless behavior that led to the mantles’ destruction, but not to the same degree as Skyld. He reminded himself that Skyld knew Beowulf and probably had hundreds of years of history with their father. Thinking of Beowulf as his father didn’t sit well with Zane. He didn’t know the man, only the character in the poem. Beowulf didn’t raise him, didn’t spend time with him or share his interest with Zane. How ever they were technically related, he would always think of Mikael as his father.

“Did the mantles go to another bloodline?” Zane asked curiously, hoping that the mantles had found someone who would treat them as they deserved. He frowned. Was he thinking of the mantles in the same way as he would a human?

Skyld shrugged. “I don’t know. Grandfather refuses to talk about that incident, and Beowulf…” Skyld grimaced. “Father is a product of his time and has never grown beyond the famous sellsword he used to be. He’s a braggart, which in that day and age was the way many fighters advertised their abilities to gain jobs. I should warn you that he doesn’t have a modest bone in his body, and if you meet him, he’ll follow you around, regaling his feats and bravery.”

He was not interesting in meeting Beowulf and if he did, Zane would kneecap him to make sure Beowulf understood that Zane wasn’t interested in anything Beowulf ha to say. A bit extreme, but Zane had a feeling his patience for some things would be in short supply for a while.

Time to change the subject. “How do we know who can take which mantles? Can we trust that the scion houses are still operating under a set code of ethics?”

Zane’s only knowledge of scions came from what he knew of Skyld personally. Skyld had been his mentor and fellow assassin for years, teaching Zane everything he knew and supplying the guidelines that Zane had been operating under ever since he went solo. It was why he helped the innocent caught in Paul’s web and saved the FBI agent Paul had wanted dead. Scions were killers, yes, but did they stand between humans and Others as protectors? Skyld had said something yesterday about justified actions and consequences, but Zane couldn’t remember the exact words. That really wasn’t unexpected since his life had been turned upside down and had the hell shaken out of it in the last couple of days. Under those circumstances, he was bound to forget some things.

“Good questions,” Skyld scratched the stubble on his square jaw. “Grandfather has made sure our house stayed true in anticipation of the day the mantles would be returned to us. The last thing a bloodline wants is to lose their connection to their mantles. But I guess we cannot discount the possibility that a bloodline or two hasn’t been corrupted.”

“You would allow us the choice to go with those we want?” the mantled asked, and several voices murmured excitedly, though Zane could not comprehend most of what was said.

Zane didn’t understand the question. “Are you asking because Ella didn’t allow you to choose or because…” He didn’t want to say master since he didn’t see the mantles as slaves or subservient. “the leader of the houses forced you on someone you didn’t want. Or you belonged to a house that you no longer wanted to be in?” He looked to Skyld with rising concern. That was not the impression he got from their conversation; mantles chose which was only fair. If the mantles did not want to return to a bloodline, Zane could have more trouble at his doorstep than a crazy murderer trying to kill Cord.

Skyld pushed off the wall, frowning. “The choice should always be the mantles.”

Little cheers went up and Zane struggled not to smile. This was a serious topic and seriously, how did he find inanimate objects cute? They weren’t baby animals.

More of the mantles spoke, finishing sentences for each other, their words in sync as if they shared a mind. Zane suspected they knew their fellow mantles with an intimacy that was denied to them since they could not pair with a scion.

“We were unsure what would be required of us—”

“—and most of us have been trapped for so very long.”

“We want to bond.”

“We want to be of use.”

“Some of want to help destroy the oracles who have kept us bound to a warped will—”

“—and forced into situations we had no business being involved in.”

“We want to go home.”

“We want justice.”


Table of Contents

Chapter One - Retirement
Chapter Two - Normal is not supposed to be this hard
Chapter Three - Caught
Chapter Four - Crimson Comet
Chapter Five - Mountain Magic
Chapter Six, Part 1 - Harbinger of a Nightmare
Chapter Six, Part 2 -
Chapter Seven, Part 1 - Stolen Answers
Chapter Seven, Part 2 -
Chapter Eight, Part 1 - No such thing as heroes
Chapter Eight, Part 2 -
Chapter Nine, Part 1 - Dead is supposed to be... dead
Chapter Nine, Part 2 -
Chapter Ten, Part 1 - Gathering Allies
Chapter Ten, Part 2
Chapter Eleven - Combustible
Chapter Twelve - Standing His Ground
Chapter Thirteen - Choices
Chapter Fourteen, Part 1
Chapter Fourteen, Part 2
Chapter Fifteen, Part 1 - To kill, or not to kill
Chapter Fifteen, Part 2
Chapter Sixteen - Maricoxi Guardians
Chapter Seventeen - Coincidence?
Chapter Eighteen, Part One - Guns Ablazin'
Chapter Eighteen, Part Two
Chapter Nineteen, Part One - Reckoning
Chapter Nineteen, Part Two
Chapter Twenty - Mercy
Chapter Twenty-One
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part Three
Chapter Twenty-Three
Chapter Twenty-Four
Chapter Twenty-Five, Part 1
Chapter Twenty-Five, Part 2
Chapter Twenty-Six
Chapter Twenty-Seven, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Seven, Part two
Chapter Twenty-Eight, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Eight, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part Three
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part Four
Chapter Thirty, Part One
Chapter Thirty, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-One
Chapter Thirty-One, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Two
Chapter Thirty-Three, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Three, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Three, Part Three
Chapter Thirty-Four, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Four Part Two
Chapter Thirty Five
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part Three
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part Four
Chapter Thirty-Seven
Chapter Thirty-Eight, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Eight, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Eight, Part Three


Thank you for stopping by and reading!!

Saturday, April 18, 2020

What's on the Reading Radar? #reading #TBR #wishlist

An oddly productive week compared to last. I don't know what changed but I like it. I did panic on Thursday wen I couldn't find my manuscript for Cherish. I finally found in it in an archived file. I must have accidentally moved it when I was trying to consolidate my files earlier in the. I'm so so so so glad that I'm an e-file hoarder. I don't delete much of anything because I might need to look something up for some reason years from now. (It has happened!)

Title: First Moon
Series: Lovin' the Coven, 1
Author: Jacquelyn Faye
Length: 271 pages

Genre: Romance / Urban Fantasy / Witches / RH

Notes: This series was recommended to me and I was warned that some of the dialogue is corny (and it is) but that it has difference relationship dynamics than most RH romances (and it does). I would not call it a poly romance, at least not at this point. I do like the characters together and as individuals. I have to say that the mystery didn't pan out like I thought it would. There was a red herring or two thrown in there, and I thought I had the answer when I didn't. I suddenly find myself almost finished with book three and eyeballing book four, bingeing without realizing I was bingeing. There is still some really corny dialogue but the plot is hopping enough that finding a place to stop for the night was a bit difficult. It does say that book four has MM theme, but this story is told from a female POV. There is a lot of voyeurism in this series so I'm not expecting much on the MM side of things. 

Blurb: Welcome to Cedar Falls...
I thought the sign seemed a little too welcoming, but when you get the call to move from the goddess herself, you don't get to be picky. I just wasn't expecting my new home to be so rustic and...down on its luck. But, when you're a witch, life can get pretty interesting...and dangerous. Especially when someone is killing the local coven. At least the chief of police is pretty hot, when he's not accusing me of being the murderer.

Cedar Falls seems to have no shortage of hot men. With so many stunning men, why choose just one? Sorry, Chief. Let's just hope I don't get too distracted before I find the murderer, open my new bookstore, and help Cedar Falls become what it was meant to be...

The Lovin' the Coven series are intended for mature audiences. 18+ readers only! They contain graphic language and sexual situations. This is a medium burn reverse harem where the girl gets all the guys. Why Choose? Harem members added as series progresses. M/M themes begin in book 4. Lovin' the Coven will be a 7 book series.


Title: P.S. I Spook You
Series: The Spectral Files, 1
Author: SE Harmon
Length: 258 pages

Genre: Romance / Paranormal / Ghosts / Gay / 

Notes: I really love both paranormal series by AJ Sherwood and have been looking for something similar. I stumbled across this one and thought I would give it a try.


Blurb: SSA Rain Christiansen used to be the agency's golden boy. It just takes one moment of weakness, one slight, tiny, itty-bitty paranormal sighting, and all of a sudden, he's the agency's embarrassment. His boss gives him one last chance to redeem himself - go down to Brickell Bay, play nice with the local police, and leave the ghost sightings behind. Rain is determined to do exactly that, even if it kills him.

Cold-case Detective Daniel McKenna's latest investigation is going nowhere fast. Five years earlier, high school student Amy Greene went missing after leaving her part-time job and was never seen again. Daniel is glad to finally have the FBI help his department requested, even if it does come in the form of his ex.

It doesn't help that Rain is pretty sure he's falling in love with Danny all over again - if he ever stopped. Add to that the frustration of seeing ghosts at every turn while he works a case that's stalled in its tracks, and Rain is starting to wonder if second chances and happy endings are just for fairy tales.


Series: Spellster, 1
Author: Aldrea Alien
Length: 724 pages

Genre: Romance / Fantasy / Magic / Bisexual / Gay / 

Notes: I saw the cover for book 2 (which just released) and I took a look at the series. 

Blurb: It wasn't meant to be like this.

Dylan's life in the spellster tower has everything he should want: magical knowledge, safety from the King's Hounds and frequent clandestine affairs with women. All at the cost of his freedom. So when the chance to leave the tower—even as a leashed weapon for the King's Army—arises, he seizes it.

When his first scouting mission goes awry, Dylan is left alone in a hostile world with the tower a distant beacon of safety. Only the flirtatious Tracker, an elven man whose very presence awakens Dylan's long-repressed desire, can help him return to his old life before the crown discovers his unleashed status.

But the risk of being branded a deserter may be the least of his concerns as whispers of an armed presence in the North threatens his home. Dylan must rely on Tracker to protect him even as everything he thought he knew begins to unravel around them.

Title: Claw & Order
Series: Episode 1: Seduction
Author: Erick Henry Vick
Length: 262 pages

Genre: Urban Fantasy / Mystery

Notes: The play off of Law & Order is what made me stop and look at this. It's on KU so I'm going to give it a go. 

Blurb: In the Locus of New York, crimes committed by magical entities threaten the delicate balance between the mundane world and the supernatural realm.

The dedicated teams of detectives who investigate these breaches of Canon and Covenants are members of an elite unit known as the Supernatural Inquisitors Squad.

These are their stories.

Leery Oriscoe is just a conflicted New York Jewish cop who got hit by the Hassidic bus—only the bus was driven by a werewolf. There’s bound to be a little crazy under his black hat. And his life just got ten times more complicated. His new partner is half vampire and half succubus.

Oh, and their lieutenant? She's the ghost of a Van Helsing.


Series: Mail Order Mates
Author: Lorelei M. Hart
Length: 99 pages

Genre: Romance / Paranormal / Gay / Mpreg / 

Notes: I've been looking for books with grumpy characters.

Blurb: My bear has had it with this alone stuff.He’s ready for his mate...yesterday. My job and my side-projects have always dominated my life. As a ranger in the local national park, I’ve dedicated myself to helping people and animals, thinking that one day my mate would come along. But after years of being alone, I now know I have to make a move if I want the family I so crave.

My best friend Roman thinks this Male-Order App is the way. Order a husband? Like ordering books online? While I think he’s out of his mind, I fill out the questionnaire and wait for an omega to bite. Still don’t think one will.


My name is Aquila. When I left my ex, he didn’t even notice I was gone until he needed money. He’s been clear about not wanting children or getting married. And I was fine with it...until I wasn’t and neither was the animal inside of me. I wanted more. So I finally finished the questionnaire on the Male-Order App and the next day got a 90 percent match, but he lives on the other side of the country. Maybe a change of scenery is just what this omega needs.


The Grumpy Bear's Omega is a super sweet with knotty heat MM mpreg featuring a hotter than hot forest ranger, a cute, nerdy omega, and resulting in the cutest baby bear shifter ever. It is the first book in the Male-Order Males series but can be read as a stand-alone.


Thank you for stopping by and reading!!



Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Assassins' Retirement Chapter 38, Part Two #TheGentleman #IONSeries #polyromance #blogstory

Welcome back to Assassin's Retirement!

Special note for this week. I revised the last paragraph from last week before starting on this week's installment, so it is repeated here. I thought it would be too much of a hassle to revise last weeks and give a link for readers to look it up. This was easier for everyone. :D

This blog story is written weekly (completely pantsed, so sometimes even I'm surprised at the left hand turns) in 1000 word sprints. If you are new to the story, scroll to the bottom to the Table of Content.

Copyright Lexi Ander

Chapter 38 Continued...

While he waited for the Skyld to return, Zane wolfed down the lasagna and warmed another large piece which didn’t put a dent in his hollow stomach. He laid out food to make for a real breakfast when the rest of the household woke. Then he hurriedly cleaned up, dressed properly, and retrieved the mantles from the safe room. He also grabbed a burner phone in case he needed to make calls to the scion families, not that he had any contact information for them. His eye twitched at the thought of giving out his location to people he didn’t know or had a chance to vet. He loathed the sense of vulnerability that ate at him, making his internal alarms go off at loosing anonymity. Until he understood this world of Others—couldn’t there be a better term for the supernatural people?—he would need to acquire a couple of safe houses. With some serious defenses… yeah defenses that included a could of holding cells and booby traps.

The quiet of the mantles drew him out of his thoughts. Yesterday they had been frantic and very chatty. Were they asleep? Were they just watching him? Could they even do such a thing? He glanced across the surface of the farm table. The mantles came in all shapes and sizes. It was almost like having a museum exhibit of antique pieces that spanned centuries. There were thick-linked necklaces with finely crafted pendants with designs from different eras. Cloak pins in the shape of mythical animals. A string of pearls so fat the mollusks had to be bigger than the palm of his hand. There were several worked leather wrist bands that were similar to Skyld’s. A living wreath of flowers he could not name. Necklaces of shells and polished precious stones. Rings set with moonstone, jade, and jasper. Then there were things Zane struggled to identify that were made from bone claw and feathers.

Looking over the collection, the pieces did not appear—at least to human eyes—that they were priceless, one-of-a-kind treasures. And they were still silent. He had not hallucinated their clamor for attention.

“Is there something wrong?” he asked aloud, feeling slightly foolish.

He sensed… power? It intensified as he waited for a reply that he thought would not get until one voice said, “We are unsure what to make of you, Scion of Beowulf.”

Zane raised a brow in disbelief. He’d had all night to turn over his thoughts on scion bloodlines and mantles. There had literally been no time to do research. The last forty-eight hours had been one situation followed by another. If Zane had been anyone else, he imagined he would have said fuck this shit and walked away. Presumably, a person could only handle so many changes before they cracked. The most difficult part for Zane was not the blood-letting or orgy or suddenly becoming the leader of a group of people he barely knew, but discovering Skyld was his brother, that was what had shook him. It did not take Zane long to understand that he came out the winner in that unveiling, but he did not know what it meant to be a scion much less a scion of Beowulf. When it came to the mantles, he only had intuitive leaps and guesses.

“I’m not sure what to make of me nowadays either,” he replied honestly. How did one ask an inanimate object how it was ‘aware’? Were the mantle sentient or more like a really smart pet? Was a soul trapped in a mantle and that was how they understood and could communicate?

Zane glanced toward the hallway, listening intently but he did not hear anyone coming his direction… yet. He leaned closer to the tabletop, and in a whisper he asked, “Are you spirits trapped in these objects?” If they were, could they even be freed? Should they be freed? Were they serving a penance? Cursed to remain with the objects or something else?

“We do not understand the question. We are what we are.” Zane searched the surface trying to pinpoint which mantle was speaking. The surges of energy seemed to come from a set of plain brown leather wristbands.

“May I pick you up?” Zane asked. Sure, he had moved the mantles from one room to another, but he wanted to hold and inspect it. The little boxes that cradled each mantle did not seem to suppress the mantle’s voice like the big carrying cases did and were more like protective cases.

Again, he waited for a reply before lifting the two bands. They were warm to the touch and the energy made his fingers tingle. He turned them over, inspecting the rigid hide. They looked and smelled like any other armbands he had come across and yet he easily sensed they were not.

A scuff made Zane look up. Skyld leaned against the wall watching him. “Mantles are not carriers of lost spirits.”

He’d heard that? Zane grinned. “I had to ask. I don’t know what they really are or how they work. They seem to be aware as if they are alive.”

“They are, in a way,” Skyld agreed. “Each of these mantles were crafted by a god and that god passed a bit of their essence into their creation, breathing a sort of life into them.”

“Essence? Is that like magic?” Zane thought he should put the wristbands back down, but he was reluctant to let them go.

“It could be described that way, I guess. When mantles are crafted they are quenched by first blood, they meld with the wearer and over time become... more. Grandfather says that the mantles take on pieces of personality from their scion, a necessity since the two have to work together in order to overcome foes.”

“That could either work in the scions favor or not. The mantles could take on the more annoying traits and the scion would be tortured by essentially themselves,” Zane said, thinking aloud. A chorus of snickers came from the mantles.

Skyld tried to look stern but a grin twitched at the corners of his mouth. “Over the years, they develop their own personalities. It is why the mantles choose the scions who will wear them nowadays. They want to live in harmony with their scion, not bond with someone they will continually clash with.”

Reluctantly, Zane set the wristbands back in the protective box. “So basically, after they are first forged by the… a god.” Motherfucker, how many gods actually existed? There was Tezcatlipoca and Anatha was with Myranda. Who else? He didn’t want to meet any more of them. That quota of what-the-fuckery was filled. “They bond with the first scion who wears them.”

“They bond with every scion who wears them, but the first bearer is also a teacher,” Skyld corrected.



Table of Contents

Chapter One - Retirement
Chapter Two - Normal is not supposed to be this hard
Chapter Three - Caught
Chapter Four - Crimson Comet
Chapter Five - Mountain Magic
Chapter Six, Part 1 - Harbinger of a Nightmare
Chapter Six, Part 2 -
Chapter Seven, Part 1 - Stolen Answers
Chapter Seven, Part 2 -
Chapter Eight, Part 1 - No such thing as heroes
Chapter Eight, Part 2 -
Chapter Nine, Part 1 - Dead is supposed to be... dead
Chapter Nine, Part 2 -
Chapter Ten, Part 1 - Gathering Allies
Chapter Ten, Part 2
Chapter Eleven - Combustible
Chapter Twelve - Standing His Ground
Chapter Thirteen - Choices
Chapter Fourteen, Part 1
Chapter Fourteen, Part 2
Chapter Fifteen, Part 1 - To kill, or not to kill
Chapter Fifteen, Part 2
Chapter Sixteen - Maricoxi Guardians
Chapter Seventeen - Coincidence?
Chapter Eighteen, Part One - Guns Ablazin'
Chapter Eighteen, Part Two
Chapter Nineteen, Part One - Reckoning
Chapter Nineteen, Part Two
Chapter Twenty - Mercy
Chapter Twenty-One
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part Three
Chapter Twenty-Three
Chapter Twenty-Four
Chapter Twenty-Five, Part 1
Chapter Twenty-Five, Part 2
Chapter Twenty-Six
Chapter Twenty-Seven, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Seven, Part two
Chapter Twenty-Eight, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Eight, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part Three
Chapter Twenty-Nine, Part Four
Chapter Thirty, Part One
Chapter Thirty, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-One
Chapter Thirty-One, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Two
Chapter Thirty-Three, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Three, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Three, Part Three
Chapter Thirty-Four, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Four Part Two
Chapter Thirty Five
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part Two
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part Three
Chapter Thirty-Six, Part Four
Chapter Thirty-Seven
Chapter Thirty-Eight, Part One
Chapter Thirty-Eight, Part Two

Thank you for stopping by and reading!!