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Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Blood Kissed Series Featuring 'Of Course I Try' and 'The Ghost of Vampire Present' by Seleste deLaney


Scribal Love Welcomes Seleste deLaney










What is the name of your novel?


I actually have a short story and a novella in the Blood Kissed series right now: Of Course I Try and The Ghost of Vampire Present


What first attracted you to writing vampire fiction?


I actually swore for a long time that I wouldn't write any more vampire fiction because it's so notoriously hard to sell, but the draw of sexy men with eternal life proved too much to resist. I think vampires are kind of Peter Pan for adults. They never grow old, they can sometimes fly, and fairly often, they become obsessed with an ordinary mortal. There's a reason Peter Pan is a classic, I mean, who doesn't want a guy to swoop in their window (in a non-creepy way preferably) and hang on their every word and move?


Who is/are your main character(s) and is he/she a vampire?


My main character is Jocelyn Reyes, and she's actually the (mostly) ordinary mortal. Both of her love interests, however, are vampires. Max Shaw and Chad Akerman come from different times and have hugely different attitudes toward romance, being a vampire, and Jocelyn.


How would you describe your vampire character? Is he/she a lover or fighter? Is the beast within held at bay? Or does he/she go with her passions?


I'm going to have to answer this separately for each of them.
Max is the lover who is willing to fight when the moment calls for it. As a lover, he's very sensitive to Jocelyn. When it comes to violence, he's Mr. Walk-softly-and-carry-a-big-stick. He would never go looking for a fight, but he also wouldn't hesitate to kill someone if necessary. He's definitely the more likely of the two to keep a tight rein on his vampire impulses. He has a carefully laid plan for most things that will make the fewest waves possible.


Chad, on the other hand, is much more in-your-face. He's cocky and likes to mouth off, which can get him in trouble. As a lover, he introduces Jocelyn to things she's never done--he likes his kink with a side of bondage. When it comes to fighting, he's less worried about keeping things quiet, and more intent on getting the job done. While he's not necessarily likely to vamp out randomly, hiding his vampire powers isn't at the top of his priority list. His plans are usually brash, but he is quicker on his feet when the time comes to decide what needs to be done.


What are your thoughts on some of the traditional weaknesses of vampires? Sunlight, crosses, wooden stakes etc. Did you incorporate any of that into your fiction? If not what were some of the weaknesses that your character must avoid?


I use them to a degree (some of which doesn't come out until the novel-length piece that I'm still working on). In my mythology, as vampires age, they are overall harder to kill and a simple stake through the heart won't do in one that's a few centuries old. Younger vamps, however, are vulnerable to such things unless they have special protections. The same goes for sunlight and fire. Since my stories don't have a religious bent to them, I don't utilize the holy relic angle.


Go crazy and tell us about your book! Include an excerpt if you like!


Thanks!


"Of Course I Try"


Love is a wonderful thing. Unless you don't get a choice in the matters of your own heart.
Jocelyn has loved Max since the day she met him. Even when he scares her enough to leave, she can't resist going back. No matter how many times she tries to break free from him, she ends up in his arms and bed again.


Not this time. Jocelyn needs to be free, and Max isn't going to stop her from walking away -- no matter how hard he tries.


EXCERPT


(Warning: This story starts off steamy so it’s for mature audiences only!)


When I came to his house tonight, I'd come to say goodbye. I remember that, even as his hands cup my breasts, squeezing them tenderly and rolling my nipples between his fingers. By the time Max lowers his head and sucks one tightened bud into his mouth, I can't recall why I wanted to leave.


Candles and patchouli incense burn in the room as my body writhes against sage sheets so soft they feel like silk. They aren't, though. I know his silk sheets—they’re black. The low light and spicy scent play on my senses, intoxicating me until the room disappears.
All I know are his hands and mouth on my body. Rough and soft. Dry and wet. Cool and warm.


His lips cover mine, and I give myself to the kiss as he reaches down and tugs off my panties. I'm wearing the lace ones. I'd come to say goodbye wearing the black lace panties he loves. But by the time they're gone, I don't consider why I'd do something like that because Max's mouth has left mine and traced a line down my abdomen.
I know I should fight this, but I can't. I don't want to. I want Max—for as long as he'll have me.


Rough hands cup my ass as he wedges my legs apart with his shoulders. Then despite, or maybe because of, the little moans that betray me, his lips travel lower, trailing kisses down to the inside of my thigh. His breath tickles as he hovers there, reaching out his tongue to trace a shape on my skin. It's a heart. I don't know how I know, but I'm sure.


"Please, Max—" A little voice in my head screams that I should finish the sentence with "stop", but I don't. I can't.


A deep chuckle vibrates against my clitoris, making a shiver run all the way to my toes. Then his magical tongue caresses the already sensitive nub, and I cry out. He sucks it into his mouth just to the line where pain and pleasure meet—treading it but never crossing over.


I'm helpless beneath him, a prisoner to my body's yearnings. My back arches off the relative safety of the bed, and Max takes full advantage. With the ease of years of practice, his hands slide beneath me, pulling me closer to him as his tongue delves into me.
I can't think anymore. I can only feel. The pressure of his hands on my ass. The silky motion of his tongue inside me. The rough grazing of his teeth.


My hands clutch at the soft, green sheets and ball them in my fists as pleasure rips through me. I've never experienced orgasms like this with anyone else. Only Max. Wave after wave of sensation as my muscles contract around his tongue. It's never stopped moving, never stopped drawing me to my peak.


I cry out his name. The only word that matters. Max.


Soon enough, I can't even feel. Then there is nothing.


When I wake in the morning, everything is hazy. I remember coming over, remember the sex. The incredible, mind-altering sex, but then I'm blank. It isn't the first time.


There's a note on the pillow next to me.


Jocelyn,


I'm glad you came back. You have no idea how much I missed you.


Love forever,


Max


Something clicks in my brain, and I realize it isn't the first time I've read those words either.




"The Ghost of Vampire Present"


Jocelyn has finally found her knight in shining armor in Chad, and ghosts are the last thing on her mind. Even when one shows up in her bedroom on Christmas Eve, Jocelyn's a bit more concerned about the other guests on the agenda. She'd prefer to never see another vampire, and the ghost tells her to expect not one, but three.


When the one from her past shows up even though he's supposed to be dead, she decides she's dreaming and suffers through the night. By the time dawn breaks, she's not so sure anymore.


But if it's not a dream, that means her nightmare is far from over.


EXCERPT


“Wake up!” a shrill voice commands.


I bolt upright, startled from a dream involving a castle and riding a horse bareback, blankets tumbling from shoulders covered with nothing but thin spaghetti straps. My breath comes out in tiny puffs of condensation as I yank the blankets back up. My eyes dart around, searching for whatever woke me. Where my clock should be is another black space in the darkness.


Another power outage. Fabulous.


“Damn it, girl, get some clothes on. If you're dressed in nothing but a nightgown when they get here, you‟ll never survive the night.”


My head jerks toward the sound. There she stands, at the foot of my bed, the tiny slip of a woman I'd barely known but recognize instantly by her glowing white curls and delicate features. Grandma Cooper. Even her dress is familiar because my mother had said it was in poor taste to bury the dead in white. Makes them look washed out. But even the choice of her funerary outfit had been part of Grandma‟s will, and though we didn‟t know it until she died, Grandma spent a lot of money to have lawyers who made sure every instruction was followed to the letter.


My mouth goes dry and my fingers shake as they reach beneath my pillow. Sure, I know her on sight, but she still shouldn't be here. And that means a weapon isn't the stupidest idea ever. But, if I turn my head to the side at all, she disappears as if she‟d never been there in the first place. Only when I look straight at her does she have substance, her body catching enough of the moon's light coming through the window to be visible against the darkness. And apparently with enough solidity that next time she speaks, her hands grip the covers and jerk them right off me.


“I told you to get dressed! Chop, chop!”


For a long minute, I sit there shivering in my nightie and staring at the blankets in her hands. “But...but...you're dead.” Please don't say vampire. As I think it, I realize she can't be one. Regardless of whatever else they can do, I'm pretty sure vamps can't disappear without moving.


“As a damn doornail. It doesn‟t change the fact you messed with the way of things and the time has come for you to face some hard facts.” Her eyes actually twinkle as she smiles. 


“And I've been waiting a lot of years to help you figure all this out. Now, time's a-wasting. Get up and put on some damn clothes.”


She's the antithesis of the fairy godmother I‟d always wished for. All she needs now is a lit cigar between her fingers to totally bastardize that particular childhood fantasy. By this point, I already know I'm dreaming. I mean, shit like this doesn't happen, right? I banish the idea that I shouldn't have watched my boyfriend turn to dust when I shoved a stake into his heart either, and instead, I do what any sane person would do when they want out of a dream—listen to the ghost. I get my ass out of bed and go to the closet. Then I grab my heavy terrycloth robe and start to slip it on.


“Oh no you don't. Trust me when I say you‟re going to want something a little more versatile.” She yanks my flannel-lined jeans and a thick, green cable-knit sweater from the depths of the closet and hands them over.


When the power comes back on, I‟ll roast, but I‟m not about to argue with a dream-ghost. Then again, no electricity means no light, and since Max, I‟m not very fond of the dark anymore. 


After tugging the clothes on, I say, “Fine. I‟m playing along, but I refuse to do this with the lights out. So if you don't mind, could you magic-up some electricity or something?”


She snorts. “No, but the power's coming back on soon enough. I have it on good authority.” She waves me toward the living room. Once we‟re sitting— me curled up in the papasan, her slouching on the couch—she says, “Your mother never believed me about you. She said I was nothing but a crazy old woman with too much time on her hands to fantasize.”


“Wonder how often she says it about me,” I mutter. Mom has never made any bones about the fact she thinks I'm wasting my life or my insistence on waiting for Mr. Right. Then again, she hadn't approved of Max, so maybe she had a point.


“Not nearly as much as she said it about me. After all, you don't tell her all your secrets.” Grandma winks at me, her face suddenly looking years younger. “When she was a girl, I made the mistake of thinking she was the one, and I told her all of mine. She would've locked me up when she was fifteen if she could have.”


“And she wasn't 'the one'? Whatever the hell that means.” I couldn't help but wonder how Mom would feel about not measuring up to what Grandma expected. Maybe it would've made her go easier on me. I doubted it though. Especially since I don‟t have a clue what she‟s talking about.


“Ha! Hell no. I wasn't entirely sure it was you either, but then I saw how they treated you.” The power kicks on then, everything whirring back to life. She waves a hand, almost as if she has done it by magic. 


“Everywhere you went, at least one was around. When you started your cycles, hoowee, then it was like sharks circling prey. Of course, they never really knew it was you specifically. They could just sense something special and it drew them. But I knew.”


“Knew what? And why is there always a mysterious they? Who the hell are they anyway?” Apparently, dream-me tends toward the bitchy and sarcastic. I kind of wish I could drag her out into the real world upon occasion.


“Knew you were special to them. To the vampires.”


I squeeze my eyes shut, blocking her from view and praying when I open them, she‟ll be gone. Even with the wish firmly in mind, I can‟t stop myself from saying, “What vampires?”


She laughs, the sound half-snort, half-smoker‟s cough. “Most likely all of them. But you better get your little ass ready because three are planning to visit you tonight.”
I gape at her and, when a word finally comes out of my mouth, it doesn't exactly make much sense. “Three?” Because, you know, one or two would be perfectly normal.


“Are you deaf, girl? Yes. I said three: one from your past, one from your present, and one you haven‟t had the pleasure of meeting yet.”


“But—”


“Don't interrupt; this is too important. One and only one can be trusted. When he comes to you, do what he asks. Your choices tonight can alter the fate of humanity, so for once in your life listen to your elders and don‟t be stupid.”

Thanks Seleste for Dropping by!

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