I swear, I’m not dragging things out to torture people.
I’ve had several people email lately and I wanted to update you…and give an excerpt.
The update part…
I’ve mentioned this before, so some of you likely know, but Kit’s not an easy character to write. Normally, stepping into her shoes isn’t so emotionally draining but after my brother died, my depression came and kicked me in the face harder than ever before.
Writing entirely was nearly impossible for well over a year, save for my freelance writing. I finally snapped out of that but it took much longer to start writing darker books. Kit Colbana, for all her sarcasm, has a lot of darkness within her. For the sake of my own mental health, I knew it was best to let the story come naturally, which it’s finally doing.
Now it’s just a matter of having the time to do it while working around my freelance work. Unfortunately, that’s the bulk of my income after a couple of years of writing so little for myself.
The good news is that I have more stories in my head than I can handle right now, I’ve sold three of the Kit books to a French translator and I’ve got other things in the works, so hopefully that light at the end of the tunnel isn’t a train.
“Put me through to him now, Scott,” I snarled, wishing I could reach through my car’s onboard computer to grab Damon’s lieutenant and throttle him.
Not that I’d have an easy time of it.
Scott topped me by a good foot. I scraped over five feet with a couple of inches, but plenty of the shifters in the area towered over me. Not to mention the vampires, more than a few of the witches and plenty of humans. Hell, even in the cold, fortress-like walls of Aneris Hall where I’d been raised, most of my aunts and my numerous cousins and the rest of the aneira had topped me by several inches.
I was used to being smaller than most of the people out there. I’d let my stature stop affecting me long ago.
Being shorter than most, and weaker than many just meant I’d have to work harder for it.
Scott’s bland hazel gaze held mine levelly, betraying nothing as he said, “The Alpha isn’t available, Kit.”
“Make him available, Scott.”
“Kit, I realize the Alpha has a great deal of faith in me but that doesn’t mean I’m able to make him appear out of thin air.” Scott lifted a brow. “You might need Chang for that.”
The deadpan humor was something Scott wouldn’t have dared used even a few months ago—and it was humor, not any attempt at disrespect. However, I recognized the dry comment for what it truly was…an attempt to direct my attention from him.
“I’m not done with you,” I warned him.
If I hadn’t been watching him so closely, I never would have seen the fine lines around his eyes tighten ever so subtly.
“I’m your servant, Kit, as you well know.”
“Shove it, Scott.” I disconnected and rapidly punched in the code that would connect me to Chang, Damon’s best friend and his real top hand man. I didn’t wait more than a few seconds before the screen flashed, then came to life, revealing a slim Asian man with liquid dark eyes, so deep a brown they appeared black and exquisitely honed features.
Chang was beautiful—and deadly—like a finely crafted blade.
Most people, like 99.99%, tread very carefully with him, even though there was something almost…ethereal about the calm that hung over Chang. It was like a cloak that encompasses him and I’d only seen it fractured a handful of times.
I suspected that calm came from age. He was old—I’d guessed that the second I meant I met him, but I’d had no idea how old. I still didn’t, but I had a better idea now.
The weight of his years didn’t weigh down on him, not like it did with petty mortals and mongrels like me. His age was something he carried with regal grace, elevating him to a loftier realm of existence.
I, however, was in much too bad a mood and felt like dragging him down into the muck where I was currently existed.
“Where the fuck is Damon?” I demanded.
Chang didn’t look put out by my irate tone or my foul mouth. He simply cocked his head to the side, eyes narrowing slightly. “He left word with Scott—did you check with him?”
“Scott won’t get him on the fucking phone,” I said, my rage now starting to make my voice shake.
Of course he noticed.
“Why don’t you explain what’s wrong?”
I almost exploded but at the last second, I was able to stop myself, mostly because I glimpsed a rare curiosity in Chang’s eyes—curiosity…meaning, he had no clue what was going on. That was odd. There was very little Damon didn’t tell Chang.
“Before Damon left on whatever the hell errand he had to do, did he put out word about interfering with my job?” I demanded.
For the inscrutable shifter, it was akin to be knocked off his feet from surprise.
“I beg your pardon?”
“The fucking cats have interfered with two assignments from the assembly in the past six days. I want to know why.” Anger was a hard beat in my chest, a pulse in the back of my mouth.
“Interfered, as in they’re…assisting?”
“Interfered as in Shanelle showed up on the first one right as I was in the middle of talking a young vamp into returning to his House and it got bloody—as in really bloody and now the vampire is going to be probably three or four years in healing and my client wasn’t happy. And the second—I was tracking down an asshole witch who was meant to stand trial for assault. I had contacts in Wolf Haven who had an idea where to look and was about ready to start making plans. That was when I get a message that he had been located by a helpful party who volunteered to escort him in, but he became violent and had to be eliminated.” I paused a moment before adding, “The helpful party declined to give a fucking name.”
I glared at him.
“Kit.” He actually looked uncomfortable. “You know Damon has more sense than to interfere with your work. You’d made him sleep in the doghouse—after you made him build said doghouse.”
“Somebody is interfering. If it’s not him, then who the fuck is it?”
Chang passed a hand over his face. “I’ll look into it.”
“Do that.” My phone buzzed, then a series of peels emanated from it—emergency code. All available Assembly personnel report. “I have to take this.”
Chang narrowed his eyes. “There have been a great deal of emergency alerts from the Assembly lately.”
“There’s been a great of shit going on lately in case you haven’t noticed.”