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Archive for November, 2020

I normally write full length novels, mainly because I’m long winded and don’t know when to shut up.

But I do have a few shorter works out there which you might like to check out. Mainly these are thoughts about the world today or sometimes issues I’m dealing with, questions the grandsons have asked.

If you’d like to check them out follow my link to Vocal.Media and see if anything there tickles your fancy. My latest work there is The Walk, because sometimes you just need a walk to help think things through.

If you’re new to Vocal.Media, go over and check it out. Maybe you’d like to publish something there yourself!

Wishing you a wonderful weekend!

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Have you read the story of Morgan, from the Esperance Series?

I wrote her into a small part in the very first book of the series, Jareth, First Lord. Later, I got to thinking about her and my mind started wandering. And while it wandered, I came up with her story, which I decided to share with my readers.

Morgan was originally from Clan Belfort, but volunteered to come to Brannach as part of the The Choosing in the first book. In trying to escape the abuse in one clan, she was sexually assaulted not long after she relocated to her new clan.

Since that time, she has been off men. Every man she’s ever known has hurt her in one way or another and she’s having no more of it.

But what about James?

James Ferguson was one of the men who came to her rescue when she was assaulted. Even though she was battered, bruised and covered in dirt, it was love at first sight. But he’s been biding his time since the trial to give her a little breathing room before he asks her out.

But she always has an excuse as to why she can’t come out with him. Not even for a cup of tea across the street at lunchtime.

How about an excerpt?

MORGAN–The Pixie and the Green Man

“Could I coax you out of here for lunch today?” he asked. How could his eyes have so much sparkle? And that smile was so warm and inviting.

“I don’t know, James. I’m not particularly social. Maybe another time.”

Not to be deterred, he asked, “What about dinner after work? You have to eat sometime. We could go to the little place across the square. It’s small and not crowded, but the food is good.”

“Maybe not today, but thank you for asking.”

He seemed really nice, but she was terrified.

“Are you sure? They have roast chicken worth killing for.”

“Isn’t that normally worth dying for?” she asked.

“Yes, but I’m not planning to die any time soon.”

Even Morgan had to laugh at this.

“I’m sorry, James. I just can’t.”

“Oh, well. Can’t blame a guy for asking. I’ll see you later,” he said as he waved goodbye.

“Morgan? Was that James again?”

Great. Now she’d have to explain it all again.

James became a regular customer and every time he came in, he asked Morgan to lunch, to dinner, or for tea. And each time, she gently refused.

About three weeks after she’d first spoken with him, she looked through the front window and saw him carrying a tray across the square. With a content nonchalance, and a warm smile on his face, he seemed happy to be alive.

As she watched, he pushed the market door open, walked over to one of the tables in the front, and put down the tray he’d carried in. He turned, smiled brightly at her, and strode to the counter.

“Now, I’ve brought a pot of tea, two cups, milk, sweetener, and scones—complete with whipped honey. Will you join me, Morgan? I scarcely ever bite and I never draw blood.”

Morgan felt her eyes widen and her cheeks flush. She stared up into the sparkling green eyes of this charming man, who was trying so hard to be friendly, while her mouth hung open with nothing to say.

“Morgan,” she heard from the back. “We can take care of things while you have some tea. It’s fine.”

James walked to the end of the counter and offered her his arm. In a daze, she went over to the table and slid carefully into the chair he held for her.

“I’m afraid I asked about you across the way,” he said as he poured tea. “They told me this was your favorite tea, and that you love scones with honey.”

The lightly lavender-scented tea was indeed her favorite and smelled wonderful. There were days when she would fight for a scone.

“They spoke the truth,” she told him, still too timid to meet his eyes.

She quietly sipped at the tea he’d brought and enjoyed the scones. He didn’t press her for conversation, but every time she glanced up, she saw those green eyes twinkle and the smile broaden.

As they tidied up the table, he asked, “So, will you share a meal with me one day?”

“I don’t know, James. Maybe.”

“Have I done something to offend you, Morgan?”

“Why do you want to go out with me?” she demanded in frustration. “There are plenty of girls in the clan.”

He stared at her for a moment before he said, “But they don’t have your beautiful smile.”

“No, seriously. Why ask me out, damaged goods and all, when there are other girls you could ask? Pretty girls.”

“Damaged goods? You’re not damaged goods. And you’re a pretty girl. Yes, there are other pretty girls in the clan, but you have a sparkle they don’t have. Unless I’m trying to take you out and then you shut down. Now what do you say?”

“I don’t know. I’ll have to think about it.”

“Tell me where you would feel comfortable. I’m not fussy. Ask my mother. I’ll eat damned near anything.”

For some reason, Morgan found this amusing and began to laugh, something that didn’t happen often.

“And you’ve got a lovely laugh, too. You should set it free more often.”

“I’ll think about it, James. I will.”

“I’ll hold you to that,” he answered, with a teasing grin on his face. “I’ll talk to you later.

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Wouldn’t just a little magic be helpful sometimes?

Well, maybe, depending on your control.

Yesterday we had a peek at Jareth, First Lord. why don’t we take a look at Viviane, First Lady today?

After her outburst the day of their betrothal, Jareth and Herrick–Viviane’s father–discuss her apparent Talents. Since they have appeared, she will have to train them so they don’t get out of hand.

In talking with Jareth later, Viviane learns a little about what it was like for her husband and First Lord when he was growing up, with all his Talents.

Excerpt from Viviane, First Lady

“Boys will be boys,” he told her, eyes twinkling in delight. “You know the kind of stuff young lads get into. Fighting and teasing the girls. Fighting over the girls. Fighting with the girls. My dad’s stronger than your dad.”  

“But it must have been a little different growing up with talent,” she insisted.

“That’s where part of the trouble came from. With all the mischief boys can get into without talent, imagine how much trouble you can cause with talent, if you want to.”  She looked at him questioningly.

 “Sometimes you just want to fight, but nobody else does. You don’t want to have it get out that you started the fight, so you kind of reach out, plant a suggestion, toy with emotions a little bit… You get the idea.”

“You can’t be serious.” He shrugged his shoulders and rolled his eyes at her. “I can’t believe, well I guess really I can. But honestly, how mean and underhanded is that?”

“That’s why Dad and I had our fights half of the time. When your dad is First Lord and knows you have a penchant for mischief, he can usually back track the mischief to its source. It took me a while to catch on,” he confided.

“Annie said you and your dad used to have fights and they sometimes got really out of hand.”

“Yes, well, I had a bit of temper in my younger days,” he said, as if he had none now, “and Dad had a bit of temper too. When all our temper collided and control started to slip it could get a little exciting.”

“I should think losing one’s temper is fairly usual at a young age,” Viviane said.

“Yes, but I had a way of getting under Dad’s skin. Once in a while his control would slip, too. That’s when things started getting weird.”

“Weird? What do you mean?”

He chuckled, thinking back on the scenes of his childhood. “When you’re young and angry, you sometimes think the old man is past it, so you decide to use the energies you can control against him. When he deflects them and they start breaking things, it can get a little weird. And when his temper began to take over, it was like the immovable object and the unstoppable force. The increasing tension from all the energy had to go somewhere, but where was anybody’s guess.”

“But you’re not supposed to use energies to harm, only to heal,” Viviane protested. “Certainly you knew that.”

“Yeah, but there’s a difference between knowing something and comprehending it. As an object lesson once or twice, Dad decided to turn the tables. After I had unleashed a series of attacks against him, which he neutralized, he thought it would be good for me to experience a little dose of it myself.”

“What happened?” Viviane asked.

He looked at her for a moment, sort of halfway between shamefaced and mischievous.

“Let’s just say that the wall is a very hard thing to hit at speed. After I regained my senses, still angry but confused, he made me clean up the mess I’d made of the room, quite literally.”

“I don’t quite understand what you mean,” she said, trying to see the picture.

“Do you have any idea how humiliating it is to have someone else in control of your motor centers? Or to be forced to clean up broken crockery, vases, and spilled flowers, when what you really want to do is to break something else? Preferably over his head.”

“Good heavens!” she laughed. “But sooner or later he had to let go of his control.”

“Yeah, after he had marched me forcibly down to my masters and had me confined in a shielded room for three days. Not to mention, I was on disciplinary rations until my temper faded and I’d gained a little understanding and respect.”

Viviane started to chuckle, and then laughed heartily at the scene she imagined. He glared at her for a moment, before he joined her in laughter.

“Anyway, that was quite a while back. It was one of my first real insights into what the power of a trained First Lord could be. I began to understand how important control is.”

“Well, you won’t have to worry about me starting any duels with you,” Viviane stated firmly. “I’m beginning to understand what my talents are and I am certain yours are greater than mine. It would be kind of like a flea picking a fight with a tiger.”

“Come on, flea,” he told her, grinning, “let’s see what we can rustle up for dinner.”

“Bad tiger! Down boy! Be good, or there’ll be no treats tonight.”

“We’ll just see about that.”

Get Viviane from Amazon or Smashwords!

Want the whole set?

Amazon Kindle, paperback, or audio book!

Smashwords ebook

So reach out for a little magic! It’s the weekend!

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Yes, Jareth First Lord has been out for quite a while, but it’s still one of my favorite stories. So I thought I’d share one of my favorite scenes with you.

For a little background, Jareth is the First Lord, or ruler, of Clan Brannach. His wife died in childbirth about three years before this story began. After meeting Viviane during negotiations with her father, First Lord of Clan Belfort, he includes her in the Choosing, taking her back to his clan hoping to win her heart. He hadn’t known she was a member of the ruling family.

She is a beautiful woman, with black hair and dazzling blue eyes. But temper? She was a feisty on. Oh yeah. She had temper to spare. But Jareth thought he had a chance at taming this wildcat named Viviane.

Viviane is the youngest daughter of the ruling house of Belfort. Her husband died about six months before this story begins. Though she would rather do nearly anything else, she may be forced to move back to her father’s house unless she can find someone to buy the shop and cottage she’d shared with her husband. But when Jareth chose her as part of the spoils, another option was thrust upon her.

She wasn’t ready for a relationship, though she was growing fond of Jareth. But he could get on her nerves when he pulled his high and mighty act. First Lords. Always thought they knew what was best for everyone.

Yeah, she’d see about that. It was about time he met someone who would stand their ground and give him a piece of her mind.

Here’s the excerpt.

“Annie, I’m so tired I want to sleep forever, or for at least a week, and it’s only the second day of the Gather. Jareth wants me to come with him but I’m not sure I can keep up the pace,” Viviane admitted, so tired she was almost in tears.

“Now, now, milady! Let’s get you upstairs and into a hot bath to begin with. No, now don’t argue with old Annie. She knows what’s best.”

A few minutes after she’d slipped into her bath, Annie insisted on some calming herbal tea, just enough sweetening in it to bring out the flavor. Then, pulling a stool up to the end of the tub, she began to brush Viviane’s hair for her like her nanny had done when she was a little girl.

“Annie,” she protested, “you don’t need to do this. Really, I’ll be fine with a bath and good night’s sleep.”

“Now, Viviane, you relax and drink your tea. A little pampering never hurt anyone. What you need is a bit of family here, which you don’t have. So you’ll have to accept me as a substitute. See? You’re feeling better already.”

She was, too. Something about the warm tea, the bath, and the rhythmic brushing pulled the tension out of her body. Finishing her tea, she relaxed for a while, nearly dozing off.

“There now, I’ll bet you can sleep and feel just like new in the morning,” she heard Annie say, as if from a great distance.

“Thank you so much Annie,” she told her, pulling herself out of her reverie. “You are a gem and I’m so glad you’re here. If there’s anything I can do to repay your kindness, let me know.”

Annie said goodnight and saw her tucked in before she left and turned out the lights. Viviane hadn’t slept so well in years.

The next morning Jareth was up early. Viviane, though, had had enough. Deciding to stay in bed and rest, she was happily on her way back to sleep when someone knocked at the door.

“Viviane? It’s Annie. Lord Jareth wants to know when you’ll be ready to leave.”

“I’m not going, Annie. I simply can’t. Give my apologies to the First Lord.”

A few minutes later there was another, stronger knock at the door. “Viviane, come on. We’re going to be late!”

“No, Jareth, I’m not going to be late. I’m not going. Please extend my apologies to your guests.”

“This is not acceptable, Viviane. You knew the requirements beforehand. You will be up and ready in ten minutes.”

Now she was fully awake and mad. How dare he give her orders?

“I beg your pardon, Lord Jareth, but exactly who do you think you are? I did not come here to be ordered about like a servant. I told you I might not manage the entire week and I can’t. Go away!”

“You will be ready in ten minutes or you will go to the Gather just the way you are. A bargain was struck and you will be held to it. Now get ready!”

Fearing he might carry out his threat, Viviane snarled and stormed out of bed. She dressed to an accompaniment of slamming doors and drawers before attacking her hair with the brush.

Jareth was pacing the hallway when she opened her door. “It’s about damned time! There will be no more of this nonsense. You will accompany me at the Gather each day and at least appear like you’re with me willingly. Is that clear?”

“Do stop, Jareth. Nobody’s impressed.”

“I beg your pardon,” he said in a dangerous tone of voice.

“Yes, okay, fine. You’ve made your point, now shut up. We’re late. Remember?”

If anyone noticed a bit of frost in the air they said nothing, but there did seem to be more space around them than usual. It was nearly halfway through the day before Viviane began to calm down. How had she gotten herself into this mess?

Want the book? Jareth, First Lord–first book of the Esperance Series— is available at Amazon, Smashwords, or from Audible!

Get ready for your weekend with Jareth, First Lord!

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Who else is glad the election is over here in the USA? I’ve never been so tired of the season in my life. All the phone calls, the text messages, posts on social media…

So after you take a breather from all of that, what are your plans for the month?

I have to finish Lady Calloway and get a couple other books edited and ready to the professional editing so I can get another book out to you soon. And I want to get another book out from Sultonna Nadine, too.

All this with the holiday season ready to kick off.

What are you reading these days?

If you’re looking for something in the PNR, fantasy genre, check out my Amazon Author Page. I have two series started under the name Mellie Miller.

For Master of the Fleet, look under Sultonna Nadine. I use this name for my stand alones.

So grab a cup of something delightful, take a few minutes to catch your breath and get ready for the holidays!

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