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Thursday, June 21, 2018


Summer, as I write this is three hours away...and while my cats do pretty well have the laid-back summer attitude down, and the couch is comfy... I hope to get out and experience a little bit of  the awesomeness that is summer days.I love the beach, the mountains, and yes, even the desert. In fact, I've just returned from a short driving trip along the Loneliest Highway in America, Route 50 in Nevada. I wanted to put up a few pics but am having some upload issues. Suffice it to say, we drove over 600 miles and saw more cows than cars.

My hubs and I love it, though. The occasional ghost town, a couple of antelopes (Oh give me a home...), herd of wild horses...all the cattle. It's hard to remember sometimes that there is such open space, but we're sure grateful for it.

What do you like to do in this warmest of seasons?

I'm especially proud to be part of a group of authors this year. We began calling ourselved the Dragon Sisters when we participated in Stoking the Flames last year, but now Stoking the Flames II is available, including a story by myself and Dara Fraser.

Here's a taste...

Prologue - 1824

“Are you sure this will hold them, sire?” The town pastor shook visibly as he stared around the cave where the town stored its valuable documents. Safe from fire and flood, the stone chamber was fitted with a steel door even the most determined thief would have a hard time penetrating without the spell to open it.
“If you are having regrets, ’twould be wise for you to remember where the others who held such concerns are.” Councilman Jones cast him a threatening glare then approached the flat rock where he’d unrolled the municipal charter and set the orb upon the document. The sphere began to glow. He knew he’d have no trouble from the trembling clergyman. Three other council members had balked at the notion of holding the dragons captive and freeing the townsmen from their curse. All three balkers were now piles of ash
“Not a regret, sire. Just making sure our plan is going smoothly.” The clergyman lied despite his vows, but Jones didn’t care so long as he went along with the plan. Even a fool like him would know this was better than the fate the town would otherwise endure—a fiery death.
Jones came from an ancient family made up of powerful dragons, or at least they had been until his great-grandfather wronged a fair maiden by taking her innocence after she refused his suit. He had wrongly assumed the only retribution would be a forced marriage, achieving his ends by different means. He’d been proven wrong, for the fair maiden’s family was powerful in ways others could not have seen, and, instead of bowing to the traditions of the time and giving his daughter to the brute, her father stole not only his dragon but the dragons of the entire family line.
As with all family oral histories, the story was twisted in its telling, and Jones grew up believing that dragons were a curse his family avoided, taught by his adoring parents to believe he was to be the savior of the entire village no matter the cost. What were a few lives if he saved the village? A hero must consider the whole picture.
“It is going magnificently.” He tested his palms on the orb and mumbled a spell in a language even he didn’t begin to comprehend, one he’d literally sold two small children to procure.
Lights flickered through the entrance as if being pulled to the orb, which they were, yet they were not lights, they were the dragon spirits of the entire town and everyone within a two hundred mile radius. Contrary to the belief Jones had that placing the orb on the charter that it would save his town—they were, after all, descendants of the cursers but only a short distance away and they deserved no saving.
The pastor lay on the floor, unnoticed by Jones as he watched the dragons seep into the orb one at a time, not lifting his hands until the orb cooled to almost ice beneath him.
“It is done.” He cackled before taking the orb and lowering it into the hidden chamber his father had discovered years ago. It would be safe there, needing to be guarded for no more than a generation. After that, the dragons would be dead along with their hosts, and the entire village would be saved from the curse.
“Wake up, old man.” He walked over, pushing the pastor with his foot.
The pastor moved not at all, for he couldn’t—with his dragon fled his life. It was the fate of over half the village. A small price to pay to end the curse, Jones reconciled. They’d need a new pastor though, to guide the people in their newfound freedom, and he knew he was just the man to do it for he was the one to save them after all.
And just like that, they became the town where dragons could not be spoken of, written about, or even thought about. To do so would resort in a fiery death—because only a witch would have such notions. It took two generations to wipe the memories from the village and six more children to shield the village from visitors until the last with the memory of dragons had passed from this earth.
Jones, being a vain man, could not let his victory go unrecognized, at least in future generations. He wrote his personal version of his heroism and sealed it in a spelled place only to be seen in such a time as needed—or so he thought.
What Jones hadn’t known was that one of the children, little Rosey, stole the heart of said witch’s daughter, Bethany, who stole her away from her mother and began a new life among the dragons. While she was never able to bring Rosey’s dragon back to her, Bethany had been able to alter the future of their town bestowing upon the family Rosey left behind the ability to foresee what was needed to be seen, for it was a descendent of Rosey who, along with her true mate, would one day set the dragons free.

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