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Friday, November 27, 2009

PHANTASM FRIDAY

THANKS TO ALL OUR READERS/FOLLOWERS


~~~~~


Without all of our wonderful readers and followers, our first seven months wouldn't have been so successful here at Moonlight, Lace & Mayhem! So, a huge THANK YOU to all of you!

Following Margay's lead, I'm going to post the first chapter of my book as well, BUT I'm going to be giving away an e-copy to one winner. If you're interested in winning a copy of Elfin Blood, leave me a comment telling me your favorite Thanksgiving food (or if you don't celebrate the American holiday, tell me your favorite holiday food) and you'll be entered for a chance to win. Best of luck!

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Reviews I've received so far:

G.R. Bretz said: “Stopping in the middle of this story would have been as feasible as stopping in the middle of sex.” To read the complete review, go here.

Sheila Deeth said: “Gracen Miller creates an interesting cast of characters in Elfin Blood, and fills their world with delightfully intriguing surprises. Very nicely done Gracen, and definitely not your granny’s or granddaughter’s romance.” To read the complete review go here and scroll down to the first comment.

~~~~~




Elfin Blood
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Elfin Blood Copyright 2009 Gracen Miller
Cover Art by Fiona Jayde



Chapter One


Julija squinted against the sun’s harsh rays. Not even her darkly tinted sunglasses entirely cut the glare. The frames slid down her sweat-slick nose. She pushed them back up and looked around, her impatience rising. For the fifth time in as many minutes, she glanced at her watch. Two minutes left. She resettled her gaze on the odd-looking house across the street.

The structure looked more like a fortress than an actual home and gave her the creeps. It was too gothic, too dark, and contrary to her light-imbued life.

Made from slate, the house reached high into the sky like a castle with its domed ceilings. Gargoyles carved from stone rested above the windows, as if offering protection from demonic entities. With a vampire in residence, perhaps they did.

She shuddered to think of it as a home, but the richest, most powerful man in the city of Veil—Landau Jamieson the IV or V or something along that order—considered it such. The man was the sole reason she stood here, or rather the vampire disguised as a man was the sole reason. Ironically the city’s residents considered him royalty. Hell, more like Batman of Gotham in these parts.

Priceless. Absolutely priceless. For no other purpose other than to make herself feel good, Julija rolled her eyes beneath the thick shades.

The vampire had stolen the Ivory Elfin Book of Lore. The ancient tome detailing every creature in existence, including the fey, had been entrusted to the Elves at the dawn of creation. Whoever possessed the book also possessed great knowledge, expertise that could be dangerous if it fell into the wrong hands. Ownership of the book also ensured great power, power she could not allow a vampire to keep.

For a week now, Julija had watched him and tried to gauge the best time to strike. Failure was not an option for the best thief among the Elves. Secretly, she was proud of her talent; it had served her people well. Elves were renowned for their light step, and it just so happened her fingers were stickier than most of her kind.

Security systems could not deter her; she possessed enough magic to nix the best system in the world.

She would retrieve the book, once she figured out how to bypass the perceptive vampire and his minions. One thing still puzzled her—how had the vampire stolen it to begin with when only Elf Royals were allowed to touch it? Another dilemma for her since she was not an Elf Royal.

Her best chance to retrieve it would be in two days when the vampire attended the depot dedication of Veil's newly renovated train station. Feeling melodramatic about the event, she rolled her eyes again. How humans loved to waste money. The homeless lived near the train station, beneath the bridges in cardboard boxes. Died there too, while the station went through elaborate renovations for the wealthy and elite.

Julija glanced at her watch again as the black limousine rolled to a halt in front of the vampire’s home. Like clockwork, the man left for work every day at precisely the same time. Talk about being a creature of habit!

The vampire in question strode about as blatant as he pleased in daylight. Daylight! Vampires and daylight mixed like metal and acid. Daylight and acid were supposed to vaporize vampires and metal, but apparently not so with this vampire.

Every cocky step he took reeked arrogance. While she pondered how he managed to keep from melting beneath the sunlight, he lifted his head. Their gazes locked.

Cool as ice, and trained for confrontations, she returned his gaze. While not the most skilled fighter, she possessed some ability in that area.

Landau’s stylishly cut, dark blonde hair gleamed like gold beneath the bright sun. The man was tall, broad shouldered, and athletically built. The charcoal gray business suit, tailored precisely to fit his frame, bespoke wealth—not money, but wealth. Even from this distance, he oozed pheromones and drew her like an addictive narcotic. That could be dangerous for her elfin libido—inordinately high in comparison to other fey creatures.

The vampire tossed her a crooked grin before sliding into the back seat, leaving little question in her mind he’d spotted her. Unmoving, she watched as the limo pulled away.

Perfect. He knows he’s being watched.

Although gone from the residence, unfortunately that didn’t mean Landau left his home unguarded. Oh, no, nothing could be that easy.

Flagrant to her elfin eyes, his home embodied magic. Translated, that meant he’d opened the Ivory Elfin Book of Lore and was, in fact, utilizing the spells in the book. In all likelihood he’d used the same witchery to protect himself from the glaring sun.

Because of this, she’d have to kill him once she had the book in her possession again.


* * * * *


Landau adjusted the black sunglasses on his face and glanced out the limousine window.

The woman on the bench appealed to him with her pale, almost white, blonde hair. Through her thick shades he’d assessed her eyes to be pale blue with barely a hint of color, rather albino in nature. Her milky white complexion had looked softer than satin. He wondered how such delicate skin would bruise.

But she had an agenda. Either she was a reporter—not likely—or up to no good. Bingo! Landau couldn’t wait to find out the no good part. A long time had passed since he’d enjoyed himself.

Although he’d tried, he couldn’t read her mind. She possessed one of few human minds he couldn’t penetrate. Or she wasn’t human. The phenomena lent her an air of mystery. Even though he couldn't glean her thoughts, he knew her mind worked at top speed, planning, scheming, and devising until a perfect little blueprint had been mapped out in her mind. Her eyes were too shrewd to suggest otherwise.

He’d tossed her a snarky little grin before entering the limo, just to let her know he knew she was stalking him. That should leave give her something to think about. He chuckled then addressed his bodyguard. “Find out who she is.”

“Immediately,” Edward, an Abecedarian—a fledgling, in human terms—agreed and then tipped his nose in the air and sniffed as if in disdain over being assigned such a menial task.

~~~~~


Don't forget to leave me a comment to be entered for a chance to win an e-copy of Elfin Blood!

13 Moonbeams (comments):

Virginia C said...

Thanksgiving Dinner is my favorite meal! I actually prepare the whole dinner several times a year. I would have to say the cornbread stuffing is the best! I prepare it with Pepperidge Farm Cornbread Stuffing, Swanson Broth, real butter, celery & onions, and poultry seasoning. It's buttery, savory, fragrant and has great texture. It's perfect : )

Carrie Santos said...

I'm a Christmas girl myself! My dad taught me how to make this AWESOME Potato stuffing. It has Italian sausage, Pork loin, Turkey, Seasonings and not to mention 20lbs of Potatoes. That’s correct 20lbs of potatoes it's that AWESOME!!! LOL!

Erika Gilbert said...

I don't have a favorite Thanks Giving meal because we don't have it in New Zealand! I wish we had something like it though. I'd love to try pumpkin pie more than anything. We don't use pumpkins in desserts here, we just roast them - I'm really curious!

Erika.

Denysé said...

Gracen - this sounds FABULOUS - I know it's going to be very successful for you!! Huge congrats!!!

Hugs and Blessings,
and of course - mega-sales!!
Denysé

Denysé said...

Forgot - Holiday treat - Christmas, I make this superb thing called "Shortbread Mint Squares" that everyone loves.... It's included in a holiday cookbook that can be downloaded over at my newsgroup!

More hugs...
D

booklover0226 said...

I favorite is the stuffing. YUMMY!!!

The excerpt is great; I look forward in reading the book.

Thanks
Tracey D

Mindy said...

Everyone (including myself LOVES Mum Sadies potatoe filling. It's a traditional PA Dutch recipe (Plenty of potatoes and Crisco ;) )

Mindy :)

sherry said...

My favorite Thanksgiving food is the dressing I could sit and eat it by itself. My sister makes the best although every thing she cooks is really good.

KT BISHOP said...

The dressing!

Gracen Miller said...

Thanks so much everyone for the comments! I want to come eat with all of you! :D

Virginia C., your stuffing sounds good!

Carrie Santos...WOW! That's a lot of potatoes! LOL But, with the ingredients it sounds yummy! It sounds like it'd feed a small army! :D

Erika, I'm not a fan of pumpkin pie. My husband loves it though. I prefer pecan pie or red velvet cake, otherwise, I'd rather have the yummy hearty food than the sweets.

Denyse...hmmm...I'll have to download your holiday cookbook. Shortbread Mint Squares sounds interesting.

Booklover0226...Odd, but neither my family nor my inlaws cook stuffing, just dressing. I wonder how it differs. Stuffing, I assume, goes inside the turkey to be cooked, while dressing doesn't. Is stuffing made from a cornbread base like dressing?

Mindy, I love potatoes and while we don't have Potatoe filling here, you can't go wrong with potatoes. Not in my family anyway. LOL Meat and potatoes and bread are almost considered staples at any given dinner. :D

Sherry & K.T., I agree, I love dressing as well. Do you enjoy mixing your dressing with dumplings? Many in my family do, but I prefer my dressing without anything to distract from the perfect taste already! LOL

I'll draw a winner tonight at 10:00 CST, so be sure to check back. I'll try to track you down through blogger e-mail, but if you haven't set your profile to public I won't be able to get your e-mail and notify you, SO be sure to check back tonight to see if you've won! Best of luck to everyone!!

Rie McGaha said...

Pumpkin roll!

Gracen Miller said...

Rie, I have never heard of a pumpkin roll. Sounds interesting!

Gracen Miller said...

I plugged all names into random.org and allowed it to pick the winner. The winner is....

CARRIE SANTOS!

Congratulations, Carrie! Please e-mail me with your e-mail address so that I can forward Elfin Blood to you.

Thanks to everyone that participated.