Monday February 27, 2023
Welcome to HERE BE NEWS, where each monday we bring you all the latest from the fantasy romance authors at Here Be Magic:
So I'm doing something a little different today. I was (and still am) deep in the midst of writing what I'd thought of as my first werewolf story, my first vampire-werewolf love story, actually, when it suddenly occurred to me that...yeah, it's really NOT my first. About a gazillion years ago I co-wrote a parody romance with a group of authors I belonged to known as the Nine Naughty Novelists. And, yes, my contribution is a mere two chapters (and a few related blog posts, you can find the links on my webpage: https://www.pgforte.com/beyond-the-cofn ) but it was and is (and probably always will be) the most fun I've ever had while writing.
You can still buy it for a mere .99 (because we can't figure out how to take it down). Or you can download it for free from the link on my website. https://www.pgforte.com/beyond-the-cofn
The Zillionaire Vampire Cowboy's Secret Werewolf Babies
Theirs was a love that nature never intended. Bigger than Texas. Hotter than Hades. Weirder than…a lot of other things you might have read about up until now.
Self-made zillionaire Rock Fangsworthy is your typical Texas cowboy…well, sort of. Typical in that the only thing this lethally sexy lady-charmer with the hair trigger temper loves more than his horse is his ranch, The Double Fang. Or maybe his boots. Less typical in the fact he's also a four hundred year old vampire with a shocking secret—he can't stand the sight of blood.
Buffi Van Pelt is just your average girl-next-door winery owner…or is she? The spunky single mom to twin boys also happens to be a winsome werewolf with secrets and troubles of her own. The winery that the gutsy good-girl recently inherited from her grandmother is on the verge of ruin. If Buffi can't find a use for the mysteriously tainted wine before time and her pantry's limited supply of red meat runs out, she and her pups will be left homeless, destitute and very, very hungry. Worse yet, her baby-daddy is the same hunky, bad-boy vampire rancher who's out to steal The Best Little Winery in Bloodsuck from under her paws.
Once upon a time their passion flamed hotter'n a summer's night in Dallas with three Cheerleaders and a side of habanero sauce. Tonight, love's lightning might just strike them twice…but only if the wine don't kill them first.
***YES, it's a PARODY. Don't say you haven't been warned!***
Excerpt:It was a dark and stormy night in Bloodsuck, Texas—the kind of night vampire cowboy
Rock Fangsworthy loved best. All except for the stormy part. Too much rain made the brim of his Stetson go limp. And if there was one thing Rock wasn’t, it was limp. He was rock hard, through and through, from the flinty gaze in his slate-blue eyes to the diamond-tipped spurs on his custom-made, hand-crafted Lucchese lizard skin boots. In fact, Rock had only one soft spot, and that was for his ranch, the Double Fang.
The ranch had been in his possession for several generations, ever since he’d fled Boston at the turn of the last-century-plus-one hoping to leave his family’s nest, his disgrace, and the truth about his shameful condition behind and start life anew in that paradise on Earth known as the Texas Hill Country.
The Double Fang occupied some of the prettiest country in all of Texas, ergo the world. And as Rock rode across it tonight, he was filled to overflowing with feelings of contentment and self-satisfaction—even despite the rain and the currently questionable condition of his hat. He was master of all he surveyed. There was, in fact, only one thing marring his happiness; one burr beneath his saddle, so to speak; one blot on his otherwise blot-free horizon.
The Best Little Winery in Bloodsuck.
Rock’s jaw clenched at the thought. A vein in his temple began to throb. “Grape farmers,” he growled, even though there was no one to hear him but his horse, Monk. “No good, double-crossing werewolf scum.”
Rock had no use for wineries. After all, he didn’t drink...wine. He had no use for werewolves either, not since the day the Braveheart brothers, Butch and Barkley, had cheated him out of a prime parcel of land that should, by rights, have belonged to him. The pair had caught him napping during the day (an unfortunate necessity for those of his kind) and took the opportunity to mark their territory—not just in the manner of wolves, which would have been bad enough, but with stakes and flags and deed contracts—the kinds of thing the County Assessor’s Office put such child-like faith in.
Rock had tried twice to right the terrible wrong that had been done him, but both times he’d failed. His last attempt had been made shortly after Barkley, the second of the brothers to die, was killed in a routine hunting accident. He’d approached the widow Braveheart with his offer to buy her out but had been rebuffed. Babs Braveheart might have been beautiful, but she had the brains to match her blonde good looks and was crazy to boot. She’d taken it into her head that Rock was at fault for her husband’s death.
Like anyone could be reasonably expected to distinguish between one wolf and another at a distance of several feet!
Babs had taken her revenge on Rock, sure enough. She’d made certain he didn’t get the only two things he’d ever wanted. But now the ding-dong bitch was dead, God rest her spiteful soul. Tonight, he would make his third and final offer for the winery. An offer the new owner, whoever he was, would not be able to refuse.
Rock reined his horse to a stop in the winery’s front yard and dismounted. He tied Monk to a conveniently placed grape arbor, a landscape feature that evoked sweet memories of better times. The vein in his temple throbbed harder. That arbor would be the first thing he’d have dismantled once the winery was his. He smiled as he imagined herds of happy cows frolicking in the vineyards, trampling the grapes, the tender fruit turning to jelly beneath their hooves.
His spurs jingle jangle jingled in a pleasantly menacing fashion as he strode confidently up to the front door. High pitched barking noises emanated from inside the house. Rock sneered at the sound. It pleased him to think the former werewolf home now housed a passel of pocketbook dogs, even though they’d shortly be gone as well.
Just as he was about to pound commandingly on the door, it was thrown open.
Rock stiffened. His jaw clenched harder. His vein throbbed. Again. “Buffi Van Pelt. I should have known you’d be back.” But, really, how could he have known something like that? Who would ever have expected that Babs and Barkley Braveheart’s granddaughter would return to the scene of their crime of passion? An awful suspicion took hold in his mind. “Don’t tell me you’re the new owner of The Best Little Winery in Bloodsuck?”
“Well, of course I’m the new owner,” she answered in flustered tones. She seemed distracted by the two puppies gamboling about at her feet. “What did you expect?”
Rock ignored her question—and the puppies. As his gaze roved over the lithe yet athletic form of the woman he’d once been foolish enough to think he might love, the years since he’d last seen her (five, at least, wasn’t it? he was almost certain it had been that long) melted away as though it had been no more than two years. Three years, tops. He took note of her strong calves, her breasts rising and falling beneath the thin t-shirt she wore, her rosy cheeks, her red lips.
Her eyes were still as blue as Texas bluebonnets. And her hair—oh, how he remembered that glossy, gold mane, so similar in color and texture to the coat of the golden retriever puppy he’d loved as a child.
He’d named the puppy Rosebud. It had been his faithful companion for three-quarters of an afternoon. Until his cousin Viggo decided to eat him for a snack. Rock could still recall the sick horror he’d felt when he’d come upon them in the kitchen that day; Viggo’s mouth stained red with Rosebud’s blood, the puppy’s lifeless body hanging limp in his hands...
A sharp tug on his ankle brought Rock’s mind back to the present. He looked down. Way down. Down to where the two puppies—wolf-hybrids obviously, not pocketbook dogs after all, nor Golden Retrievers either, more’s the pity—were viciously attacking one of his custom-made, hand-crafted Lucchese lizard skin boots with the diamond-tipped spurs.
“Shoo,” he said as, gently but with firmness, he kicked his foot in an effort to dislodge the pests.
Buffi clapped her hands. “Vlad! Ivan! Stop that this minute!” she scolded.
Rock stared at her in disbelief. She’d named her dogs after his father and grandfather? Oh, the fickle cruelty of women! Why did she not just stake him through the heart and have done with it? The vein in his temple throbbed its agreement.
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