Busy, busy…instead of blogging, I'm posting an excerpt

Got a book that wants to be done.  Taking the easy way out today.

here’s an excerpt from Candy Houses:



Rip drifted awake slowly. He could sense Greta was near. Feel her hand on his brow. The soft, gentle touch of her fingers stroking his hair. She wasn’t scared or worried, so that must mean they were safe—which meant he could enjoy waking up next to her.

They were talking.

Caught in the twilight between sleep and waking, he could hear Greta talking to…somebody. What was her name? Mandy—yes, that was it. Mandy. They were talking.

“You ever heard of Hansel and Gretel?” Greta asked.

“You mean like with the bread crumbs, candy houses and all that? The wicked witch?”

“You don’t know your fairy tales very well. In the story, it was a gingerbread house. But in reality, it was just a little house. No wicked witch. Hans, though…” her voice trailed off, but he knew her well enough to sense the pain, the remembered fear that lingered even after all this time.

He forced himself to come completely awake. He opened his eyes and stared up at Greta’s face.

She wasn’t looking at him.

She was watching the girl.

From the corner of his eye, he could see Mandy, see the disbelief on her face, the edge of cynical laughter trying to work its way free.

She shook her head and snapped, “You’re fucking kidding me.”

She started to pace, her heeled boots thudding dully on the floor. “Insane. Why in the hell do I always end up with insane people around me?”

“She’s not insane,” Rip said softly. His throat was dry—dry as a desert. Damn, he was thirsty. He didn’t even have to say anything though. Greta pushed a bottle of water into his hands and he eased halfway up in the bed, wincing as the healing muscles in his belly screamed a reminder at him.

Like he could forget that he’d been gutted not that long ago. He downed half the bottle before lying back down.

Mandy was watching him like she expected him to come after her at any second. Pale and spooked. She stared at his torso with an intensity that had him shifting on the bed until he realized what she was staring at. His healing wounds. Almost already completely healed. He pressed a hand to his stomach and shot Greta a look. He knew how bad it had been. He should have spent another day or two, at least, healing.

“How long was I out?”

“Only six hours.”

Glancing at his stomach, he looked back at her. “I don’t heal this fast.”

“Mandy helped you.” She glanced at the girl and smiled faintly. “Apparently, she’s got a healing gift.”

“She’s a healer.”

“Yep.” Greta slouched over the bed, bracing her elbows on the mattress as she slanted a look at Mandy. “She’s got a gift that lets her heal some damn bad wounds, but she doesn’t believe in demons, in God, in us.”

Mandy sneered at them. “I’m in the room, hello? And the jury’s still out on the demon thing. The guardian-angel bit, though, that is messed up. No way.”

“Doesn’t it stand to reason that if demons exist, so do angels?”



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