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Thursday, October 15, 2009

TWILIGHT THURSDAY

~~~~~
CHARLOTTE BOYETT-COMPO REAPS MAYHEM WITH THE MOONLIGHTERS



Charlee is the author of numerous books and series. Among those series include, Demonwind, Windworld, Windverse, Westernwind, Blackwind, Windtorn, and many, many others. Her website is worth spending some time on. There's lots of fun things there, free reads and poetry. She's the author of the successful Reaper series and has an entire page dedicated to the Reapers on her website. There's a sweet "In Memory Of" to her husband, Tom, that had me misty-eyed.


But that's just a taste of what her website has to offer, so, click here and spend some time piddling. You won't be bored!

First off, thank you for joining us, Charlee. It's an honor to have you with us and I'm excited you joined us! I know everyone is anxious to learn more about you, so, let's kick off this interview with some questions about you:

1. Do you have a movie that you must watch every Halloween? What's your favorite scary movie? Do you have a favorite scary character or character type?

I like Gerard Butler’s Dracula simply because I love his portrayal of the vamp. My favorite old movie I watch whenever it’s on is Christopher Lee’s Mummy. That scares the bejimmeny out of me. His makeup was absolutely flawless.

2. Do you have any Halloween traditions like decorating your house, having house parties, wearing costumes, etc.?

We have a long wooden walkway that goes across the front of the house and wraps around the side. I bought twenty plastic pumpkins a few years ago and put a layer of gravel in each. I added flickering LCD lights last year instead of candles. Safer and prettier. My husband used to dress up as my signature Prime Reaper complete with scythe to hand out candy; he loved doing it. He died in April so this year my youngest son is going to do the honors. The kids in the neighborhood expect it.

3. If you do dress up for Halloween, what will you be dressed up as this year? What was your all-time most favorite costume that you ever wore? Why?

I have a witch’s outfit with long scalloped train and a sparkly spider web across the front. I bought it five years ago and it’s my favorite...although I can’t get into anymore! My favorite all-time costume was one I had as a little girl. I was Bride of Frankenstein…even to the wig with the lightning bolt white streaks on the side.

4. Are you superstitious? Do you find yourself knocking on wood or throwing salt over your shoulder? If not one of these two, what is your superstition?

The only superstitions that I have are not walking under ladders and it a black cat runs in front of the car, I make a large X on the windshield. It’s an automatic think.

5. Do you believe in ghosts? If so, have you ever had a ghostly encounter and tell us about it?

Yes I do. I’ve seen my maternal grandfather. My grandfather came to warn me that there was something wrong with my baby. I was so startled at seeing him beside my bed…he’d been dead eighteen years…I couldn’t get up. I yelled at my husband to go check Mike and when he did, he discovered the infant had somehow wrapped his blanket around his head and was blue when Tom discovered him.

Since his passing, I’ve felt my husband tugging on my pillow once and I’ve seen him twice. When he was alive, he would reach over and tug on my pillow when I snored. He would tug three times and I’d wake up and then he’d tug three times more…used to annoy me no end! He had been gone about a week when I was wakened by something tugging on my pillow. It had been a particularly bad night and I had cried myself to sleep. When I opened my eyes, there was no one there but then there were three tugs on the pillow. I got out of that bed so fast I must have looked like a cartoon cat. I ran into the den and then I heard laughter. It was his laughter. He was simply letting me know my snoring was annoying him. The two times I’ve seen him, I woke to find him sitting in the wingback chair beside my bed. When I called his name, he faded away. The second time, he was standing between the bedroom and bath, rubbing his head. It was a habit he had once the radiation had robbed him of his beautiful hair. He would say, “Yul Brynner, eat your heart out!” When I spoke to him, he turned, smiled then simply faded away.


6. Tell us 3 funny or strange things that happened to you, or someone you know, on past Halloweens.

There was an old house in the town where I lived. When we’d go trick or treating, we’d never walk down that side of the sidewalk, crossing the road instead. One year there was a piercing scream coming from the house and we froze, then turned and ran back the way we’d come. Turned out it was a trick the neighbor beside that house was playing. He’d put a speaker on the house’s front porch, ran a long extension cord to his house and as soon as he saw us coming, he played a record of Halloween sounds.

When I was little, I had a black nanny. My mother owned a restaurant and my father owned a long-distance trucking company. Lou-Lou would put me to bed every night, tell me a scary story then tuck me in. Even as a child I loved a good scary story. One night when she was telling my favorite story of Nancy Hanks, there was a loud scratch on my bedroom window. She pulled back the curtain and we saw two very large, very scary eyes staring back at us. She screamed; I screamed. She snatched me up and ran out of the room, closing my bedroom door behind her. It turned out to have been a panther that had escaped from a circus train that had de-railed not far from our house. (As a matter of fact, one of my father’s drivers hit and killed that same cat when he ran in front of his semi. Everyone is Colquitt, GA talked about that for months! The driver was sick because he was a cat lover but the big beast came up out of the ditch and there was nowhere he could to avoid hitting it.)

On Halloween in 1975, my boys were seven and four. I was sick with a brutal migraine and couldn’t take them trick or treating. My mother had had knee surgery and couldn’t take them, either, so her best friend did. It was a rainy, miserable night but Doris was game. She took them up and down her street and several others. She had told the boys to say Trick or Treat then to be sure to say thank you. When they got to one house, the lady opened the door, the boys said Trick or Trick but she just stood there. Doris said she had a rather uppity look on her face. The boys stared at her then my youngest…who has always been a very direct soul…asked, “You gonna give us candy or not?” The woman laughed and went back inside her house. She told Doris that my boys were the ones she gave candy to. Apparently she liked to lecture the kids on the evil of Halloween…did I mention this was in Georgia? Because Mike had been so direct, she gave them two Hershey bars she had on hand.


7. If you could be any paranormal creature, what would it be and why?

I wouldn’t mind being Mrs. Bigfoot. I’d get to scare campers then disappear and I wouldn’t have to shave my legs and underarms or pluck my eyebrows.


Now, let’s get to your writing:

8. Why the paranormal genre? What was the draw for you?

As I said earlier, when I was a little girl, my nanny would tell me ghost stories. So would my grandfather. My mother and I would watch Shock Theater when it came on late on Saturday nights. I was mesmerized by the old Universal monsters like Lon Chaney Jr’s werewolf, Boris Karloff’s Frankenstien and mummy Kharis. I knew all the old actors by name and by the time I was in my late adolescence, I had discovered Hammer Films and had a big crush on Chrisopher Lee. I think what drew me to writing was my love of the genre. I subscribed to Famous Monster magazine when I was younger so it was natural for me to create monsters of my own.

9. If you could describe your paranormal writing with a word or phrase, what would it be? Please be creative and look beyond words like vampire, werewolf, etc., and delve into the core of your writing to tell us what word or phrase you want readers to take with them when they've finished reading your story.

REAPER! I am known all over the web as the creator of the Prime Reapers. I have created lupine, canine and feline Reapers. I even have trading cards for my Western Wind Reapers. I have whole sections of my website dedicated to information about them.

10. Do you prefer playing tricks on people or bestowing treats? Does that show through in your writing? If so, how?

I don’t like bestowing treats because I’m basically a very shy person. That’s why my husband always handed out the candy at Halloween and why my son will be doing it while he’s staying with me. So I guess that leaves playing tricks and I guess it does because I’ve had reviewers say that thought the plot was going in one direction and then in the blink of an eye it turned, leaving them with their mouth’s open. I’m also known for my cliffhanger endings from the WindLegends Saga series. I like leading the reader down one path, making them comfortable then springing out from behind a tree to startle them.

11. Who decides what creatures you write about, you or your muse? What kind of influence do you have over your story, or is the muse always the one stirring the cauldron?

His name is Sean and he can be a mean little bastard. He sits on my shoulder and when I’m writing, he’ll kick me in the cheek with one of his pointy little boots when he doesn’t like how the action is going. If I sit quiet for a moment or two, he’ll give me an idea that really rocks. He whispers to me when I’m sleeping and I’ve awakened with some fascinating plot lines.

12. What was the creature that you had the most fun creating and why?

My Reapers! They are shapeshifting werebeast/vampires and they are badass guys who live ten years to every human year. They can shift into crows or ravens and take to the air. They have super strength, amber eyes, and are psychic. Of course each of them is ripped and have a Reaper tat on their chests.

13. If you had the opportunity to meet just one of your characters in real life, who would it be and why? Which of your characters would you never want to meet under any circumstance and why?

I’d love to meet Kamerone Cree, my first Prime Reaper. He’s the baddest of the bad and I patterned him after a young Adrian Paul. I would not like to meet the grandmother from In the Wind’s Eye, Grace Vivienne. She is a mean, evil old bitch and I hated her even as I wrote about her.

~~~~~

We asked for pictures and Charlee shared a picture of her DH as the Reaper.


~~~~~

BLURB:

CATCH THE WIND
~~~~~~~ The WindVerse Series ~~~~~~~

Riezell Guardian Major Dominia Alamaine has heard about the celebrated sexual prowess of Jaeger Rosakaris. The an Tuirc prince’s manhood is legendary and she’s anxious not only to see for herself what all the fuss is about but to experience it firsthand. But the mating doesn’t quite go as she plans. Her love ‘em and leave ‘em attitude won’t work this time for Fate throws a monkey wrench in the gears by bonding the two as eternal mates.

Jaeger isn’t that upset about the bonding. As a matter of fact, he’s rather pleased with the situation. Domi is a gorgeous woman with a laser-hot body, sultry lips, and a mind as sharp as an assassin’s dagger. With her at his side, he won’t mind taking over the rule of his home world even though his mother has very lethal plans of her own for the woman he wants to be his bride. Though love has hit Jaeger hard, it will be hatred that will ruin his young life and make it a living hell.


EXCERPT:
An Excerpt From: CATCH THE WIND
Copyright CHARLOTTE BOYETT-COMPO, 2009.
All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave

A little noise in the corner of his cell made him turn his head toward it. The rat was back and had brought a friend.

“No,” Jaeger said, shaking his head. “You aren’t going to take a few nibbles out of me for shits and giggles. Go away and take your buddy with you.” He moved his shackled foot but the rodents made no effort to flee. They sat in the corner and stared balefully at him with their wiry whiskers twitching.

If he’d been entirely human, he wouldn’t have been able to see so clearly in the pitch darkness that filled his cell from one wall to the other. He wouldn’t have been able to hear the quiet intake and expulsion of air from the rats’ tiny lungs. His nostrils would not have been as sensitive to the musky rodent scent.

However, he wasn’t entirely human. He wasn’t really sure what he was now, but he knew he had evolved into—well—something other than what he’d been. Something not quite sane.

A muted clang brought his head up slowly. He turned his eyes to the ceiling but the chain attached to the handle of the slop bucket hadn’t moved. Another sound lowered his head and swiveled it toward the thick iron door. Shock registered in his amber eyes. Such sounds were never heard and that meant only one thing: Someone was coming.

He cocked his head to one side, listened intently. He sniffed the air.

Four distinct smells washed over him, bombarded his senses.

His eyebrows slashed together. Deep furrows appeared over his nose as he drew in the scents once more, testing the air just as the rats were doing.

Four smells. Three were male.

The three male scents he didn’t care about, but the fourth scent…

He inhaled deeply, too overwhelmed with that scent, too stunned by it to react to the scrape of feet outside his cell, the mumble of voices pitched low, the sound of a key grating in the door lock.

He could feel the accelerated thunder of his heart as the lock disengaged, the rusted hinges began to shriek.

Light blinded him as the door creaked open to allow lantern light to flood the cell. The heavy chain attached to his wrist clanked against the wall as he threw up his arm to block the harsh intrusion that was painful in its intensity, turned his face aside, closing his eyes. The beam of light drove through his head like the blade of a hot dagger.

“Turn that light down!”

It was a voice he had never expected to ever hear again—speaking with authority he knew all too well—and as the light decreased, he slowly lowered his arm, squinting as he wedged his eyelids open to stare disbelievingly at the two people who had entered his hateful world.

“Milord?”

He couldn’t speak. He didn’t dare. Though her back was to the light, her eyes in shadow, there was no doubt in his mind who she was when she dropped to a squat beside him.

“Milord?” she repeated and he hated the pity he heard in her voice. When she put out a hand to touch him, he cringed, sliding as far along the wall as his restraints would allow.

He heard her whip around, felt the air as it was displaced, drew in the scent of her righteous anger as it was expelled alongside a demand to know what they had done to him.

“He’s shackled hand, foot and neck to that goddess-be-damned wall like a dog!” she exploded. “Where the hell did you think he could go?”

“He is a Shadowlord,” the warden protested. “If he isn’t chained with iron, he can use his powers to…”

“He is in an iron-sheathed cell!” she shouted, slapping her hand against the wall so loudly Jaeger winced. “His powers are nullified in here. Those shackles are meant to torture and humiliate him!” She moved so quickly the warden had no time to jump back, coming toe to toe with him, her lips drawn back over her teeth. “What other evil shit have you done to him?”

“He hasn’t been t…touched!” the warden stuttered. “As you can see we cleaned him up and…”

“Look at him!” she snarled and shame ratcheted through Jaeger. “You call that not being touched? There are scars all over him!”

He hid his face against the wall, pressed his cheek tightly to the cold metal wall for he had no idea how he looked. From the quiver in her voice, he knew it must be bad.

“T…they’ll heal, won’t t…they?” the warden asked, his voice quivering. “Once he has his powers back. They’ll…”

“Unlock those gods-be-damned irons!” she hissed. “Get those things off him before I strangle you with my bare hands, you son of donkey semen!”

Once more, the air moved around him, and he felt her withdrawing, getting to her feet, moving aside for the hated guard. He heard the unknown man speaking softly to her but his heart was beating so fast, so hard he couldn’t make out the words. He could not believe she was here—that any of them were. By his reckoning, it had been seven, maybe eight years since he’d last seen a human face, heard a human voice, felt hands on him. He had to bite the inside of his mouth to keep from crying out as the guard knelt down in front of him to unlock the shackle from his ankle for the iron had long since bitten into his flesh, almost melded with it. As the band came away, he could not keep the groan of pain from coming, and she pounded on that, whirling around so quickly the guard had no time to spring back before she backhanded him aside.

“How dare you hurt him!” she shouted. “Give me those fucking keys!”

He didn’t want her to unlock the manacles circling his wrists. He didn’t want her flesh to touch his. Despite the bath, the shave, he felt things crawling on him, and he didn’t want her contaminated by the contact. As she hunkered down at his side, laid a gentle hand on his shoulder, he tried to shy away from her touch, quivering like a leave in a hard wind.

“I’ll be gentle, warrior,” she said softly. “I swear it.”

He couldn’t help himself. He was drowning in the sweet waves of her soft voice, helpless to ignore the gentle pressure on his shoulder. Breathing freely for the first time in years as she unlocked the heavy iron collar from around his neck, he felt as though he could float up through the ceiling. Slowly—infinitely so—he turned his head toward her. The unknown man standing behind her now held the lantern and its light fell fully on the most beautiful face in the whole of the megaverse. His throat closed as he looked into the tearful green eyes of the only woman he’d ever loved.

~~~~~

A REAPER

(Wow! What a hottie!)
~~~~~

BLURB:

THE WYNDSTONES
~~~~~~~ Book Two: The HellWind Series ~~~~~~~

Lorna Brent has come to the rugged Appalacian Mountains to join her brother Daniel, a priest sent to minister to the people of Tabor Hill. Running from a brutal attack, wanting only peace and solitude, she believes she will find it in the picturesque little settlement hidden high in the mist-shrouded mountains.

But things are not idyllic in Tabor Hill. The men rule their women with an iron hand and they have been searching for Lorna for a very long time. The Elders of the Hill have secret plans for Lorna--plans that will turn her world upside down, making her a virtual prisoner on the mountain and pitching her into sexual slavery.

From the teeming, lightless realm of the Abyss, Chrystian Brell lies waiting. Listening for the voice of one special woman whose entreaties will free him from his unbearable existence. It is Lorna's voice that begs for help from any quarter available.

He has heard.

Hell has opened.

And a Nightwind has been loosed.



EXCERPT:

An Excerpt From: THE WINDSTONES
Copyright CHARLOTTE BOYETT-COMPO, 2008.
All Rights Reserved, New Concepts Publishing

Prologue

Alinor Tabor watched her lord and master, her husband of ten years as he strutted across the courtyard of their keep and wished a bolt of lightning would stair-step down from the roiling heavens to fry him where he walked. She longed to look down on his smoldering ashes, so she could hawk a goodly wad of phlegm on the mess and curse him as he deserved to be cursed. If ever a man had earned a place in hell it was Reynolds Tabor and with any luck at all, he’d find his way there sooner or later.

“Sooner if I had my druthers,” she mumbled, rubbing the bruises that ran up and down her left arm—bruises that went with the other purple and blue shadows that littered her body.

Every woman at the keep had reason to hate and fear the laird. Not a one from the age of twelve on up had been spared his rutting or his brutal hand. Seven were pregnant with his seed and another two had just delivered bairns. It was neither a safe nor easy place for the females of County Wicklow to live.

“Janey died this morn, Lady Alinor.”

Turning to confront the servant who brought the news, Alinor sighed. It was not unexpected. The child had been little more than a wisp of a thing when Reynolds had forced himself on her a week past, breaking a thin little leg in the process. As undernourished and anemic as the poor thing had been, the lady of the keep was surprised Janey Reid had lasted this long. Perhaps it was a blessing in disguise for the fourteen year-old waif. She would join Betta Shaw in the servant’s cemetery.

“Well, see to her burial,” she told the servant and at the man’s respectful nod, Alinor turned toward the kitchen door. She took stock of the staff as she made her way through the hot room.

A broken nose for Jenny Regis.

A black eye for Lila Deal.

A split lip for Maire Dunlop.

A concussion for Lizzie MacLeod.

An arm in a sling for Jessie McFadden.

Three rounded bellies for Nanceen McKenna and Wilma Gilmore.

All compliments of the vicious bastard whose bed Alinor had not shared in over three years but who had placed the marks of his drunken abuse upon her two days before. It was not wise—as well she knew—to argue with her husband. He was not of a mind to be challenged, debated, or told her was ever wrong—especially by a woman. Neither did he forgive or forget and because she had dared question his mistreatment of young Kitty Kirkpatrick, his lady-wife had borne heavy fists and vicious feet for her trouble.

“My lady, will you be breaking your fast this morn?” Ethel McGregor, the chief cook, inquired.

“Nay,” Alinor said listlessly. “I’ve no stomach for it.” At Ethel’s concerned sigh, the lady of the keep stopped long enough to bestow a brittle smile—the only kind of which she seemed capable of late. “I’ll take soup and a thick slice of your sautéed beef between sourdough bread, though, for the noon meal. Have a glass of milk sent with it and an apple, mayhap a bunch of grapes to tied me over until the evening meal.”

“Aye, my lady,” Ethel agreed in a relieved voice.

“And send a basket to Janey’s grandfather. She went on to her reward this day,” Alinor ordered.
Ethel’s shoulders slumped. “The goddess be good to her,” she said then slapped both flour-caked hands over her mouth, her eyes wide.

Every hand stilled in the kitchen. Every eye flew to the lady of the keep. Breaths were held. Heart skipped a beat.

“I did not hear you say that, Ethel Mae,” Alinor said. “And you had best be grateful he didn’t.”

Ethel nodded silently, trembling violently for the mistake she’d just made could have cost her life had it been overheard by one of the keep’s men folk then reported—as surely would have been—to the laird.

“Be more careful,” Alinor cautioned. She looked at each woman and girl there. “Each of you. Be very careful.”

She left the kitchen and slowly, painfully took the servants stairs to the third floor where her personal chambers were located. Reynolds rarely intruded there so she spent as many hours as possible where she neither saw his ugly face nor heard his sarcastic voice. His chambers were on the floor above her so thankfully the thick stone walls and wooden beams kept all but the occasional piercing scream from interfering with her solitude.

Closing her door—but daring not shoot the bolt for fear Reynolds would take it in his mind to come calling—she went to the fireplace, pushed aside the tapestry hanging beside it and dug her short nails into the borders of a loose stone. Removing the stone, she reached inside the hidey-hole and took out the diary she had been keeping since being brought to Tabor Hill Keep the day after her seventeenth birthday. Replacing the stone, she went to the desk, picked up the inkwell and quill then took the diary with her to the window seat. Setting the inkwell on the window ledge, she slid onto the seat’s thick cushion, drawing her knees up to brace the diary as she wrote.

“Well, today the poor little sweeting left this ugly world behind. I pray she has found a much better garden in which to work than the one she toiled in here at Tabor Hill. Only She knows all the travails Jenny suffered in this life but at last the wee lass is beyond His reach,” she wrote in her secret language no one save she could decipher. Dipping the quill repeatedly into the black ink of the well, she finished the page relating the poor girl’s demise then lifted the book to her lips to blow the ink dry.

The first fat drops of water hit the mullioned panes beside her and Alinor turned her face toward the bleak gray light. Closing the diary, she laid her head on the mound of pillows behind her and stared at the water that began to cascade down the glass. She put a finger to one drop and traced its way down the pane until it disappeared.

“How I wish I were a drop of rain,” she mused aloud. “I could go where I pleased, when I pleased.”

Being allowed beyond the walls of Tabor Hill was something about which Alinor could only dream. She had not stepped one foot beyond the plank bridge that ended at the portcullis since her wretched Joining to Reynolds Tabor. She had not traveled to the first fair, enjoyed the first outing, nor returned to her family home since that terrible day. She was a virtual prisoner in her husband’s domain and could only be thankful he had yet to see the need to apply the shackles that would make her captivity complete.

A commotion in the courtyard drew her attention and she leaned forward, placing her forehead on the cold glass so she could see what was happening below. Her forehead creased for there was a massive coach and four sitting in the turnaround before the massive front steps of the keep. Four beautiful black horses were harnessed to a most impressive black coach with two liveried men in black sitting in the driver’s seat. The sight of the unrelieved color sent a shiver down Alinor’s back.

“Who could it be coming to call upon Lord Tabor?” she asked quietly.

Visitors were rare at the keep. Personages of importance—and surely whomever it was inside the coach surely possessed vast wealth from the look of the conveyance and horseflesh—never darkened the door. The laird’s lack of manners and reluctance to offer hospitality played a great part in the isolation of Tabor Hill.

Scurrying to her knees for a better look, Alinor dragged her skirts out of the way, laid the diary on the seat and cracked the casement window, pushing it out just enough so she could hear. The cool wash of the cool wind misting her face with droplets of water did not dissuade her from pushing the window open a bit more.

“Oh, my!” she said as she spied her husband standing beside the coach. The monster was getting soaking wet in the downpour but even so, he had his hat in his hand, bobbing his head of sparse gray hair up and down as he conversed with whoever was inside the coach. Peering closely through the rain, Alinor could see the window of the coach was cracked open.

“I will see to it, Your Grace! Ye have my word on it!” she heard her husband agree then the coach’s window was closed and the driver snapped the reins to set the perfectly matched animals into motion.

As the elegant coach arced around the oyster shell drive, the laird of the keep remained where he was until the vehicle had cleared the plank bridge. Slamming his hat atop his head, he strode toward the stables with a heavy tread and drooping shoulders. Whatever task he had been set to accomplish must be important, indeed, if Reynolds intended to ride out in the deluge.

“May your horse pitch you into a fast-moving stream and the devil drag you under,” Alinor said, sticking her tongue out at her husband’s retreating back as though she was still a teenage miss. When he stopped and spun around—no doubt feeling the hatred she flung his way—she scrambled back lest he see her spying on him.

Trembling as she stood just beyond the window seat for the window was still ajar and she knew he could not help but have seen it so, she twisted her hands together, whimpering at the surety of another beating at the hands of her enraged spouse. The last time he’d caught her spying on him, he had taken a quirt to her bare ass and legs and lashed her ‘til the blood ran down her quivering legs.

“Please, Lady!” she whispered to the only deity she knew might be listening. “Please don’t let him beat me again!”

A bolt of lightning sizzled through the bleak gray heavens and the crack was loud enough to make Alinor shriek. She covered her ears and ran to her bed, flinging herself upon the satin coverlet as the rumble of thunder that followed shook the windows in their frames. She drew her slender body into a fetal position, burying her face into the softness of the pillow. Shuddering, terrified that at any moment her husband would throw open the door and snatch her up by her long red hair, she laid there barely breathing lest she miss the sound of his plodding steps on the stairs. The moment she heard the loud thumps, she began to whimper.

The door was thrown open—banging against the wall as the laird of the keep strode into the room.

“Spying, were ye, ye worthless cunt?” he snarled. “What did I tell ye about that?”

Alinor heard the tink of metal and knew he was unbuckling his belt. She prayed that meant he would use it on her and not that it signaled, he was releasing the monster he kept penned in his britches. The moment his hand closed cruelly on her ankle, and he jerked her half-off the bed—flinging her skirt over her back—she went as cold as stone.

“I’ll teach ye to disrespect me, ye ugly hag!”

As she always did, Alinor went somewhere else in her mind as his fingers snagged in her bloomers to rip them from her hips. She grunted as he wedged his loathsome body between her thighs but barely batted an eye as he rammed his filthy, disgusting flesh into her dry sheath. She had learned long ago to distance herself from his rutting. With her hands buried in the coverlet, she endured the painful process and when he was through with her, removed his heavy, rain-soaked body from hers, she stayed where she was until he was at the door.

“I’ll be gone from the keep for nigh on a week,” he snapped as he readjusted his clothing. “On the prince’s business. My brother, Nigel, will be here in my stead.”

Alinor cringed at the news for if there was any man she hated more than her husband, it was his younger brother Nigel who used her, as though she was his own.

“Be good to him, ye useless bitch,” Reynolds said and laughed, knowing full well what would happen when Nigel arrived.

Waiting until she heard his boot heels thumping on the stairs, she rolled over, dragged herself into the bed and lay there with his slick seed running between her legs.

“Merciful goddess, help me,” she whispered. “Please, help me. I cannot do this on my own.”

Another brilliant flash of lightning pulsed at the window, lightning skirled, thunder punctuated the violent burst then the room turned dark as night around Alinor—the light leaching away as though being sucked from her chamber.

Sitting up, her heart thudding painfully in her chest, she caught movement out of the corner of her eye and snapped her head around. There was nothing but darkness in the room. No light came from the door Reynolds had left standing open. It was as though all luminescence had fled the world.

“Mo Regina?” she asked quietly for there was but one deity who had the power to turn day into night in an instant.

A soft, sweet-smelling breeze drifted through the room. The scent of lavender hung in the air.

“Mo Regina?” Alinor whispered again, her green eyes wide.

A tiny spark of light blossomed in the heart of the dark hearth then flittered across the room like a firefly. Prism-like colors flashed across the ceiling in small diamond shapes, spun lazily along the crown molding then coalesced into a good-sized ball of slowly spinning light. The revolutions came to a halt the ball began to elongate until it was a shaft of soft light over six feet in height.

Mesmerized by the display, Alinor could not tear her gaze from the multi-colored light shaft that hovered just above the carpet. As it began to expand outwards, she drew in a breath and held it for it was fashioning a being with broad shoulders and narrow hips, long legs and powerful arms that lifted away from its body to extend toward her.

“Alinor…”

Her name came from the center of what was now a head forming on the torso of the beam of light. It was softly spoken with a deep timbre that made the hair on her arms stir.

Slowly, the luminosity began to fade until she could see color in the column of light—long black hair woven into a thick braid that hung down a brawny chest; amber eyes that glowed with an inner fire that held her captive in its gaze; a black silk shirt and black leather pants.

“Alinor,” he whispered again, one hand held out to her. “Come to me, dearling.”

She did not question the command or the otherworldly nature of her unknown visitor. His face was the most handsome of any man she had ever seen and the gentle smile hovering on his lips put her at ease.

“Aye, milord,” she said as she moved from the bed.

Her eyes fused with his, she took the hand he offered—felt the warmth of his flesh—and was pulled into the safety of his strong arms. She closed her eyes as he cupped the back of her head to hold her to his chest.

“I heard you, my lady,” he said and placed a gentle kiss on the top of her head.

“Protect me?” she pleaded.

“With all that I am,” he answered. “You and yours for eternity. You were chosen for me.”

She looked up into his chiseled features, the gleaming golden eyes.

“Who are you?”

“Who would you have me to be?” he asked.

Alinor put a hand to his chest and felt giddy from the feel of hard, solid muscle beneath her palm. She thought of all the wistful dreams she’d had of a gallant rescuer coming to take her from Reynolds Tabor.

“My savior,” she said without hesitation. “My friend. My lover.”

“Your lover I will be,” he said. He crooked his index finger beneath her chin then lowered his head to touch his lips to hers. The kiss was soft, sweet, and fleeting before he raised his head. “There is but one small matter.”

“Anything,” she swore.

He brought her wrist to his mouth and nipped at the flesh, drawing blood. Alinor winced, looking down at the crimson stain on her flesh.

“You must swear yourself and yours to me for all time,” he said. “I must have your seal in blood and when it is done, you will never again know the troubles of your past. I will right your wrongs. I will attend to your enemies. I will set your world to rights but you must join the Sisterhood, as all your serving women must. You must learn the ways of the Sisterhood and you must never deny me what is mine.”

Alinor would have done anything to be free of her husband and those of his kin. She nodded eagerly, swearing to do whatever it took although she had no notion what the Sisterhood was.

“I am yours,” she said, then shook her head. “We are yours. Tell me what we must do to remain so.”

From the depths of the room a thick leather bound book appeared, floating toward them as though carried by unseen hands.

“Sign your names in your own blood,” he instructed and when she did, he bit his own wrist, dipped a finger in the blood then scrawled his name in the Book. She looked down. His name was emblazoned in his own blood—Chrystian Brell—for just a moment before the Book dissolved.

“What are you?” she asked. “Did the Triune goddess send you?”

He smiled and the gleam of his white teeth looked predatory.

“Nay, my lady, She did not. Another did. I have been indentured to the women folk of your family for as long as there is time in the megaverse. I was created just for you and yours and you will have the first use of me.”

He backed her toward the bed—the evidence of a thick, hard erection pressing against her belly. Scooping her up in his arms, he laid her down and in the blink of an eye her clothes disappeared and his, as well, simply vanished. As he stretched out his muscled body atop her, nudged her thighs apart with his knees, Alinor wrapped her arms around me.

“Love me, Chrysty,” she whispered against his ear.

“Always,” he replied, sliding his cock deep inside her aching channel. “The Nightwind will always be here for you and yours. I ask but one thing of you.”

“Name it,” she said breathlessly.

“Give me power to do as I see fit in your behalf. Make sure your women never deny me and mine.”

Alinor hesitated only a moment then agreed. The Nightwind smiled for she had unknowingly unleashed him on her world.

~~~~~


Leave Charlee a comment and you'll be entered for a chance to win a copy of her book WindWarrior.

7 Moonbeams (comments):

RKCharron said...

Hi :)
Thank you for the great interview with CHARLOTTE BOYETT-COMPO!
Thanks to Charlotte for sharing.
I loved the excellent excerpts.
This was a truly memorable post.
Thanks again,
RKCharron
xoxo
PS - Will Charlotte join Twitter?
:)

Denysé said...

WOW - what a fabulous interview!! And pictures, and blurbs, and teasers... This was an exceptionally GREAT posting, congrats ladies!! I have to admit, I loved the interview best because I love getting to know more about people who's names are familiar to but I've never had the chance to speak with!! The books sound wonderful, of course. MUCH good luck to you with everything, Charlee, you're clearly a very busy and talented author!!

Blessings and Hugs,
Denysé
Denysé Bridger, Author Website

Gracen Miller said...

Thanks for joining us today, Charlee! It was a pleasure and an honor to have you. And it was interesting reading about you and learning more about your books. I can't wait to get started reading your Reaper series!

Best of luck!

Sheila Deeth said...

Your reapers sound cool. Thanks for this introduction to you and your writing. Gets me into the mood for Halloween.

Gracen Miller said...

I plugged everyone's names into Random.org and allowed it to pick a winner. And the winner is...

SHEILA DEETH

Sheila, please e-mail me at gracen.miller@yahoo.com to claim your prize!

Gracen Miller said...

Sheila, I forgot to mention that you need to contact me within ONE week or a new winner will be picked from remaining entrants.

Congratulations!

Rebecca J Vickery said...

Hi Charlee,
What great stories you tell. Love them all. This was a fantastic interview and I enjoyed it immensely. I also believe your dear husband was trying to give you comfort and let you know he is watching over you. I truly believe that love is not bound by earthly shackles or the ideas we have of life and death. Please keep writing these great books and sharing them with us.