Wednesday, August 31, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Since Moon-Touched has gone on to the editing phase, I'm choosing another WIP to showcase today. A while back, I started a sequel to Two Lives in Waltz Time, my paranormal time travel release from Samhain. It's called All The Devils Here, and continues Cash and Maddy's story as well as introduces another couple, Quin and Colette. This is from Quin's introduction into the story...

*****

He stared at a ghost.

Ghosts appeared out of nowhere, echoes of the people they used to be. They created havoc not through what they did, but through their mere existence, shocking those who witnessed them and inevitably frightening them away. Whether they held malice or not mattered little. The end result was always the same.

Even with a blade inches from his carotid, Cash refused to yield to fear. Because Quin Brenner would always be his friend, no matter how many years separated them.

“You’re still the master of shrouds,” he said, with a smile he had to force. “I never knew you were there.”

Quin glanced at Maddy. “She did.”

Hearing Quin’s voice without seeing his lips move sent an array of goose bumps down Cash’s spine. That was actually harder than seeing the scarring mutilating his old friend’s face.

“I didn’t know.” The fact that Maddy piped up to answer Quin’s allegation meant she heard him, too. Cash tucked away the little tidbit for dissecting later. “Not that it was you, anyway. Or anyone.” Her wide blue eyes tilted up to meet Cash’s, silently imploring him for clarification.

“Guess my girl’s got more gifts than I realized.” Cash curled a protective arm around her waist, but when he attempted to retreat a step, Quin matched the movement with his own slide forward. The sword never bobbled. “Now is that any way to greet an old friend?”

You’re supposed to be dead.”

“I think we were both supposed to be dead, mate. Put the blade down so we can talk.”

Quin made a soft snorting sound under his breath. “Is that supposed to be funny?

“It wasn’t?” Cash pretended to pout. “I must be losing my touch.”

“Cash…” Maddy’s gaze had returned to Quin, and while she held herself stiffly, she gave no other indications of alarm. “Why don’t you introduce us?”

Don’t. Let the girl go.

The mere fact that Quin didn’t want Maddy included in this was enough to convince Cash to keep her around, at least until he knew more about what was going on. “Bit rude, isn’t that? Especially since you’ve made such a sparkling entrance. That deserves names, at the very least.” He swept a free arm between them. “Maddy Cardinale, Quin Brenner. Quin’s part of the old gang, the one I told you about, remember?”

He didn’t want to clarify any further, not with death written across Quin’s features. He just hoped Maddy would understand the reference.

Her sharp inhalation said she did.

“So now that introductions are out of the way,” he went on, “let’s say we do something about the sword. Can’t very well buy you a pint and catch up on old times if you’ve got me shished and kebabed.”

I’m not here for fun and games. Let the girl go, and I promise you, she won’t get hurt.

“I’m not going anywhere,” Maddy said before Cash could chime in. Infuriatingly, she stepped more in front of him, placing herself in direct line with the deadly blade. When they got home, he was going to have a serious talk to her about her predilection for getting in the way. She’d already taken a bullet that was meant for him. Once should have been more than enough.

So be it.

Sparks danced from the tip of Quin’s sword. Cash barely threw his arm up in time to shield her from the magic leaping across the distance.

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