“Dreams In Danger” – Excerpt from SHADOW WALKER (Project Prometheus)

ShadowWalkerCoverArt

Their mission is to search out and bring down those who trade in terrorism, fear, and human suffering by whatever means necessary. To do this, they must be willing to give up their freedom, and even their lives. They are a mercenary unit with a mission, and a motivation that has nothing to do with what they get paid, and everything to do with the innocent lives they save. Meet the men and women of…

 Project Prometheus

Trevor Watkins is the miracle of the hour — the survivor of an unassisted coma. But he awakes in a strange place, with no memory but one — the smiling face of a woman with jade-green eyes he has a dreadful feeling he’s supposed to hate. Trapped in a living nightmare from which he believes there is no escape, he finds himself face-to-face with a betrayal he can’t help but forgive, and a secret he can’t hide from. Now, the jade-eyed beauty from his past can set him free, if he’s willing to let her step into a world that could take her away from him forever.

“Dreams in Danger” — Excerpt from SHADOW WALKER (Project Prometheus, Book #3)

Jaye stopped in the middle of her great-grandmother’s sitting room, her eyes closed, and drew in deep, cleansing breaths. The air here was old, yet sweet with the remnants of the last time Gran was here to clean during the summer. She let it fill her, take her away from the dark, terrible reason for her return. She nearly jumped as Trevor’s voice spoke from behind her.

“Where did you get this place, again?”

He loosed a quiet whistle of appreciation. The awe on his face as he turned in a wide circle in the middle of the spacious sitting room stirred a pang of combined nostalgia and regret in Jaye. The sturdy old house never failed to awe her either, no matter that she’d owned it for nearly fifteen years. Once, she dreamed of making a home here, but those dreams died in a single night in Hell. They were never coming back.

Dumping her purse and coat on the rocking chair her great-grandfather made with his own hands, she drew another deep breath of chilly, slightly-stale air and sighed. Even unused for years, this place made her feel like she’d come home.

“It was given to me,” she answered Trevor with a bittersweet smile. “My great-grandmother had it built here on Boone Mountain in 1907, because she believed she belonged here, rather than locked away on a Reservation. When she died, the house passed to Gran, who stubbornly refuses to live anywhere but on the Reservation. When I turned eighteen, she gave me the house. She said it was where I, not she, belonged.” Jaye traced loving fingers along the sturdy oak dining table as she made her way through the dining room. “She was right, too. I couldn’t bear to part with this place, even when I knew I wouldn’t be able to live here. It’s been too much a part of my dreams for too long to give up.”

“Dreams?” Trevor’s voice sounded suspiciously husky, and, when she turned to meet his gaze, the naked hunger there twisted her heart. Why couldn’t he just trust her?

Of course, she already knew the answer to that. With a wince, she admitted, “I always dreamed of living here. I decided that when I retired from active duty, I’d come here to live. I dreamed of coming home. I wanted to fill this place with the laughter and love it was built to hold.”

He slanted her a curious look. “So why didn’t you, after Jordan was born? You were never very concerned with more than your required four years of service before.”

She turned away from him to hide the pain she knew was visible in her eyes. Didn’t he remember? Didn’t he realize what it meant to her to have him a part of those dreams?

“I couldn’t bear it,” she admitted in a raw whisper. “My career was the only place I could hide from my dreams. Somewhere along the way, the dream changed. And then I killed it completely.”

He was silent for so long she feared he left. She was just about to turn and look, when she heard a shuddering sigh leave him.

“I remember.” His booted footsteps creaked on the old wood floor. “You used to talk about this place a lot.”

She nodded, and swallowed back tears. Used to. “You remember our day together, in Muqdisho? We talked about coming here, once we both got back stateside. We were going to…” Pain fisted around her throat, and a sudden chill enveloped her. Rubbing both arms with her hands, she hugged warmth to herself to ward off the pain as she forced the whispered words past her throat. “We were going to get married here, before…”

“Yeah.” After a long moment of silence, she felt as much as heard his retreat. His voice, when he spoke again, was full of pain and longing. “Before.”

Get ready for the next chapter of Project Prometheus!

Shadow Walker

Available 12/21/2015

Advertisements

“Monday’s Ghost” — Excerpt from SHADOW WALKER (Project Prometheus)

ShadowWalkerCoverArt

One of my favorite Project Prometheus characters to write has, since this moment when he’s first introduced, been Jordan Watkins. As a child, he’s endearing, precocious, and just has a lot of real character in him. Later, as a teen and an adult, that combination makes for a man with a profound sense of self and what he wants in life.

 

 

“Monday’s Ghost” — Excerpt from SHADOW WALKER (Project Prometheus, Atlantis Silver, Book #3) —

It was a typical Monday morning, Lieutenant Commander Jaye Michaels decided with a glance at her watch as she navigated the cluttered family room she never had time to clean, anymore.  At the foot of the stairs, she hollered, “Jordan!  C’mon, you’re going to be late!”

I’m going to be late.  Normally, a few minutes behind wasn’t a problem for her.  Even the United States Navy cut clinical psychiatrists a little slack; especially those decorated for valor she never felt less deserving of than she did this morning.  Not when the day loomed ahead of her like an executioner’s axe.  After two and a half long, terror-filled years of holding her breath and praying, she finally acquired the most important case of her life, on Friday.  Today, she would come face-to-face with a ghost.

Jordan!

A thoroughly put-upon sigh answered her from the second floor, and Jaye bit back a harried laugh as she made her way back to the kitchen.  Nine years old was just far too young to be so contrary.

A few minutes later, the heavy thud of sneakers clomped dejectedly down the carpeted stairs, and a thoroughly antagonized Jordan, his sweater on backwards again, appeared in the kitchen doorway, small frown lines denting his forehead.  Jaye smiled at him even as tender pain lodged in her heart.  He looked so much like his father, with his caramel-colored skin and dark amber eyes.  Only his high cheekbones and smooth, raven-wing hair came from her.

“I don’t need to go to school,” he protested with all the vehemence of nine-and-omniscient, followed by a hopeful look that pained her.  “Why can’t I go with you, instead?”

Jaye flashed him a tolerant smile as she slathered bread with Jordan’s two favorite food groups – peanut butter and apple jelly.  Sighing, she realized it was one more constant reminder of his father.

“Because you have to go to school, so you can learn how to do all that fun stuff you want to do, kiddo.  And I have to go to work.”  To beg forgiveness for my life.  Tension returned to coil between her shoulder blades, making her wince.

“Now, turn your shirt around so the tag is in back and find your book bag.”  She handed him his lunchbox – predictably Star Wars, like everything else in her son’s life – and offered him an encouraging smile as she ruffled his hair affectionately.  “Buck up, short-stuff.  Just think what you’ll be able to do once you get school over with.”

He brightened on cue as he struggled into his thick winter coat.

“I want to be a pilot, Mom.  Can I fly a jet, like on base?”  She winced again, acutely aware of her son’s love of fighter planes.  Her memories of watching fighters take off and land at Andrew’s Air Force Base were bittersweet, at best.  It was a regular pastime of theirs, thanks to Jordan’s rapt fascination.  She couldn’t deny him something that gave him so much joy, but a fearful knot tightened in her gut to know she fed his desire to rush into danger.  Jaye smiled wanly, unwilling to quash his dreams with her own reservations.

“You can be anything you want to be, honey.”

He grew pensive as he followed her silently through the house toward the front door.  “Mom?”

“What, babe?”  She asked distractedly as she shrugged into her coat and snagged her purse and the keys to her Toyota Corolla.

“Can I be like Dad?”

The unexpected question brought Jaye up short, and her eyes squeezed shut.  Good God, she hoped not.

Get ready for the next Chapter of Project Prometheus

SHADOW WALKER

Available 12/21/2015

Find out how it all begins with IN HER NAME, available now from Desert Breeze Publishing.