Well, I’m still trying to get some other newbies to post their first encounters, but I think they’re a bit shy (SHERRINDA) and Casey’s not back from vacating yet. So no worries, I’ll keep bugging people to see who my next vict…er…guests will be.
Announcement!! – Miss Kallie won Jamie Carie’s novella, The Snowflake. Congrats, Kallie. Please email me at pepperbasham(at)yahoo(dot)com.
Okay – my turn. (gulp)
So what do I think makes a great first encounter?
Explosions of wit, anger, attraction, danger…oh about any kind that automatically puts the hero and heroine into discomfort 🙂 Even though most of my guests didn’t use the word ‘explosion’, it’s really what many of them meant. Something between the characters ignites! Fireworks are going off externally, but definitely internally.
Now, I’m always incredibly nervous when I post my own writing for the world to see, especially among such wonderful authors as the ones who have stopped by, but here’s a try
From a BRAND NEW BOOK – Heartless
And it’s my first attempt at a Christian Supernatural – so here ya go. I envision Rachel McAdams as my heroine and Ethan Hawke as the hero (I didn’t mean for the names to match so well 😉 The heroine has just come from rescuing a teen in the forest of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Something…er…someone was chasing her.
Rose had been gone half an hour. Too long.
Sophia closed her eyes, allowing her senses to reach beyond the bookshop to locate Rose, but another feeling sliced into her thoughts with sickening familiarity. Black. The soul of her purpose. His scent clawed the shadows of her mind like a foggy dream.
Why would a Forsaken come so close?
She raced down the stairway and into the front room, the jingling of bells pulling her attention to the front door. The full aroma of his essence breathed through her, igniting fire in her chest. One look solidified her assumptions. He was perfect. His honey-colored hair fell over his forehead in waves, his skin glimmered too pale in the afternoon sunlight, and his eyes… Blue? Pale blue, even, almost taunting the soulless black she’d expected. How was that possible?
Friendly? Her voice lodged in her throat. Friendly? When had a Forsaken ever been friendly?
He quirked a honey colored brow. “You’re not exactly what I expected.”
“No?” She fingered her cross necklace and steadied her breathing, waiting for the opportune moment to strike. She didn’t like games, especially this kind.
“When the others mentioned you were coming, I thought you’d be older.”
Sophia stared at him, trying to make him out. His gaze trailed the room and finally came to rest back on hers, a distracting blue. Unearthly.
“I didn’t expect to be chosen, but I told them I’d make sure to take care of you.”
She stepped back and lifted to her full height. “That won’t be necessary.” Her voice vibrated in the back of her throat like a growl, every muscle tensed to alert. “I can take care of myself.”
Heat radiated from underneath her skin, pulsing through her as rapidly as her heartbeat. The change of his expression cleared any confusion his behavior might have caused her. He was a Forsaken.
His pale eyes darkened, slowly, like light fading at dusk, moving from baby blue to aqua and ending in a navy. He gravitated forward, almost robotic, his gaze glazed like a drug induced stare. “What are you doing?”
His raspy voice secured her power. Her gift. The scent of her pure blood captured him and with one taste would burn through him, slowly killing him. The same desire he used to prey upon the innocent would destroy him. Watching him writhe would be a benefit.
Sophia’s nails bit into the palms of her hands, gaze locked with his, willing him forward. Closer. He took two steps.
“Don’t. Do. This.”
His request shook her. Her skin cooled a few degrees. “What are you?
His darkening gaze intensified. “I’m not your enemy.”
Not her enemy? His words seared any confusion or mercy she might have felt a few seconds before. She had been born to rid the world of his kind, of his evil. His kind had taken enough from her. Not her enemy? Liar.
He was within touching distance now, eyes half-glazed, almost black, and unblinking. She pushed back her hair from her neck and felt her pulse beat against the cool air.
His gaze flickered to her throat and his mouth dropped open, his breath pumping with the rapid rise and fall of his chest. One more step and it would be all over.
“God help me,” he gasped and closed his eyes, a visible shiver quaking his shoulders.
His plea doused her spell and confidence. She stumbled back to grip the counter, lost in this impossibility. A prayer from him?
A crash of the back door shattered into her thoughts followed by Rose, arms laden with two brimming bags. Sophia stepped between Rose and the intruder, blocking his access. One step and he’d be picking his teeth from the back of his head.
“Hey, Ethan. I see ya met our new neighbor.”
Sophia’s skin cooled to ice. “Ethan?” Her contact’s name was Ethan.
Rose stepped around her and set the bags on the counter, but the man’s gaze remained fastened on Sophia’s as he loosened his jaw. “Ethan Taylor.” His Adam’s apple bobbed with an effortful swallow. “I think we have an appointment?”
Well – there ya go. Hope to have another for you by Wednesday. In the meantime, I’m keeping my wordcount on track for ACFW Novel Track for the month of July.
BTW, speaking of Christian Supernatural fiction – what do you guys think about that? I never imagined wanting to write one, but (much to my surprise) the idea came. Ever had the urge to step out on the edge in your writing? 🙂