Yay! I am very pleased to announce the sale of my erotic vampire romance novel, Blood Will Tell, to Ellora’s Cave!
I am so, so excited, because I love this book–I tend to look at all my projects with more love the further away from them I get, I’ve noticed. This one is where I really started to get my dialogue on, yo. I’m really, really proud of some of the dialogue in this one, and I’m offering this tiny teaser as an example:
The stew in her white china bowl looked and smelled fabulous, rich with beef and red wine, but Cecelia wasn’t about to dig in. Who knew what was in it? She’d seen enough movies to know that the heroine—in which category she firmly placed herself—never just blindly accepted food or drink given her. Especially by someone whose category—hero or villain—she didn’t know.
She watched Julian from under lowered eyelids, waiting for him to begin eating. He didn’t. He was watching her right back, smiling slightly.
“Is this where I take a bite myself, so you know I haven’t poisoned the food?”
“Would you?” she asked sweetly.
“They’re in separate bowls,” he pointed out. “I could easily have drugged yours and not mine.”
“Stop being ridiculous. I’m not going to sit here and play out scenes from The Princess Bride with you. Eat it or don’t. I don’t much care.”
She looked doubtfully at the bowl.
“Just ask yourself,” he said. “If I planned to kill you, would you have woken up at all after you passed out? Fun as our little conversation has been, I assure you I have other things to do than trade barbs with women who make it a habit to wander around alone at night.”
“I wasn’t wandering. I was coming out of the lab. Where I work. I’m a scientist. You make me sound like a hooker.”
“And you make me sound like a clumsy serial killer,” he said. “Poisoning your food, indeed.”
“Look, just what the hell is going on here?”
“We’re discussing which of us thinks the worse of the other. Not a pastime I usually—”
“Oh, shut up!” she said, louder than she’d intended. “What do you know about all of this vampire stuff, anyway? You can pretend you don’t, but you do. How are you involved in all of this? And why are you being so fucking mean to me? I was attacked, and you don’t even care.”
“Go to hell,” she snapped, standing up. “I’m leaving.”
“Oh, and you’re welcome,” he replied.
“I said you’re welcome. For saving you. You couldn’t be bothered to thank me before.”
She stopped hunting for her shoes and stared at him. “Is that why you’re being so nasty?”
“One of the reasons, yes.”
“And what, pray tell, are the others?”
He sighed. “It irritates me when people waste energy.”
She kept staring.
“You’re spending all of your time worrying about me. Am I a serial killer, am I going to poison you, what do I know about vampires. What do you know about vampires, Cecelia?”
“They have fangs and drink blood and catch fire in the sun. Crosses scare them. Holy water burns them. A group of them attacked me earlier. And…I know you saved me. Thank you,” she added, hoping she didn’t sound as begrudging as she felt.
He nodded an acknowledgement, managing to look in the process like a king bestowing favors. She hated him. And still, damn it, found him incredibly sexy. “A group of vampires,” he repeated. “Doesn’t that strike you as a bit odd?”
“Uh, the whole concept of vampires strikes me as a bit odd. What exactly is supposed to be standing out in the sea of weirdness here?”
“Don’t you usually think of vampires hunting alone? Stalking their prey on a lonely street or some fake-smoke filled nightclub?”
She sat back down. “I guess I do.”
“So, then, isn’t it odd that a whole group of them showed up-barely past sundown-and attacked you? Outside of a blood research facility?”
She was beginning to see his point, and fear flowed through her veins like a frozen cocktail. “But,” she said, a little desperately, “couldn’t they have just wanted to get in? We keep blood there…”
“Cold blood. Blood that’s being tampered with. You’re not a blood bank, you’re a research lab. I don’t think they wanted entrance to the building, Cecelia.”
“How do you know my name, anyway?”
He raised one eyebrow at her again. Bastard. “Do you think I would have brought you into my home without knowing something about you?”
“You searched my purse.”
He shrugged. “Of course.”
She wanted to be angry, but found she really couldn’t. In the grand scheme of things, it wasn’t that big of a deal. After all, he had saved her.
Although why, she had no idea. The image he seemed to be painting of himself as wandering Samaritan faded quickly when examined through the lens of his snide personality.
“And did you find out anything interesting?”
“I know you like MAC lipstick.”
“Ah. The secrets of my soul lie bare before you.”
“Sarcasm is so charming in a lady.”
“Just as charming as in a gentleman,” she retorted. “So what you’re saying is, I was attacked because of me. Not by chance, or at random. There’s something about me that made a big gang of vampires want to kill me. Which means…” her voice faltered. “Which means they’ll probably try again. And keep trying. Until they get me.”
I am also extremely pleased to announce our beloved Bam has made her first sale, to Samhain Publishing, for their upcoming “A Midsummer Night’s Steam” Anthology. Her sure-to-be-amazing tale, called “Skin to Skin” (oooh!), releases August 17th, so make sure you save some cash this summer so you can get it, because Bam is a wonderful writer and I’m sure her story rocks hard.