Keegan Foster’s Pride Release Blitz & Giveaway

Kerri Terrell nearly didn’t make it. With her house burned, her accounts frozen, being fired from her job, and her daughter taken, Kerri had nearly given up.

Keegan was happy to discover he had a new mate and a daughter now too. Protecting them from their supposed family would be his top priority.

Although both lions, when Keegan and Kerri came together, Kerri was more than Keegan anticipated. A lot more. As the magic flowed through them, neither was sure if they’d survive it.

AMAZON USA https://amzn.to/3bRheyF
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/3QIlVcN
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/3JQCEbN
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/keegan-kathi-s-barton/1142004079?ean=2940186436034
GOOGLE PLAY https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kathi_S_Barton_Keegan?id=xdaAEAAAQBAJ
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/keegan-3
ITUNES http://books.apple.com/us/book/id6443278333
PAPERBACK https://amzn.to/3pjetJo

Add it to your book list today

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/61948066-keegan

Brook Garrett had learned to live by her wits. When she was very young, she lost her father to a car crash. When her mother remarried, her nightmare really began. A few years later, her mother died the same way. She was next.Ronan Foster was an officer out on medical leave. He was a lion and wasn’t hurt in the least, but the guy responsible for shooting him would go free if he didn’t take the sabbatical. The guy was for much more than shooting him, and justice needed to be served. Trust was hard for Brook. Her stepparents had seen to that. Now the big lion was telling her that they were mates and she wasn’t sure how she felt about that. She had been doing just fine without a man in her life….

Parker Carter spent eight years in prison for a crime she didn’t commit—murdering her father. Now that the justice system had finally admitted their mistake, Parker was set free. Parker could have left anytime she wanted, she was a powerful witch, but for reasons of her own, she had remained locked up and didn’t use any of her magic.
Donahue Foster, a teacher at the local school, was having a hard time resting. Taking a run and stretching his legs as his lion was something he hadn’t done in a while. He hadn’t gotten far when he noticed two things, he smelled fresh blood, and he felt a presence. Don was dumbfounded when the woman used a mind link to communicate with him. She told him her name was Parker Carter, she didn’t like people, and she was his mate.
Don was so stunned with that news that he was nearly run over by the night hunters Parker chased off.
Now that Parker was back, her past needed to be settled. Half-truths and well-kept secrets needed to be exposed. And the possession of her mother, Meggie, was the most mind-boggling of all. What kind of screwed-up magic was this?

Sometimes, Rogue didn’t much care for her job, but it paid well, and she was damn good at it. As a forensic photographer, Rogue’s job was sometimes a bit more than she could handle. Especially when there were kids involved. But she could always vent to her college buds, Loman and Cass Foster.

Quin had heard all about Rogue from his brothers, and he was anxious to meet her. Loman and Cass said they owed their lives to Rogue, but they wouldn’t give Quin any of the details.

As soon as Rogue arrived, Quin realized she was his mate, but as soon as she met Don’s mate Parker, it was chaos, leaving Parker heartbroken and Rogue hurt. Rogue was steaming mad, and Quin’s lion wanted to protect her, but Parker was family too. Quin was stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Sarah had been on the run her entire adult life. As soon as she found out she was pregnant, she faked her death to keep her children safe from the prick who’d fathered them. Now, nine years later, her twin boys were her entire world, and she was petrified he would find her. When she received the voicemail from Cass, she thought the end had finally come for both her and her boys.

Cassidy Foster was only helping a client find his long-lost grandchildren when he contacted Sarah, but when a distress call came in from one of her boys, Cass told the boys to hide before Cass’s lion took him. It only took that split second for him to know the woman inside screaming was his mate. Would he be too late to save her?

RONAN https://amzn.to/2sXcAsi
DONAHUE https://amzn.to/2ZGMaYf
QUINLAN https://amzn.to/3f9x0Cn
Cassidy https://amzn.to/3Hdn6Mu

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag All Sizes are available also we have mousepads and bbq aprons too

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Terri Bellville Signed Paperback
Tena Talhelm Tea Totaler  

Second Chance Winner
is
Kristin Peterson

Packages will be mailed out on
Aug 16th, 2022

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote
Courtney Kinder Signed Paperback
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Christina Flynn Tea Totaler
Kristin Peterson Signed Paperback
Teri Bellview Signed Paperback
Renee Johnson T-Shirt & Tote
Shirley Coursey T-Shirt & Tote
Heather Angalet Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak T-Shirt & Tote
Peggy Serour Tea Totaler
Lovie Ball Tea Totaler
Nicole Morgan Tea Totaler
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Terri Bellville Signed Paperback
Tena Talhelm Tea Totaler  

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

Happy Reading,

Prologue


Keegan closed up the books he’d been working on and put them in the safe behind him. Tomorrow he was going to be moving everything into his new domain, and he’d feel better about the bigger safe as well as the good locks on the doors. Just as he was coming out of the building he’d been using as a temporary place, he was knocked on his ass. He ended up falling backwards and hitting his head on the cornerstone. He must have been out for only a few seconds when someone was jerking him up from the ground. Still dizzy, Keegan couldn’t focus on the man holding him, but he could smell that he was a bear. The hard shake to his body had him lashing out with his fist, and for the second time, he was down. This time, however, so was the man.

“I asked you a fucking question. Where the fuck is he?” Keegan said he didn’t know what he was talking about. “Oh, you don’t, do you? Well, who the hell knocked you back with tiny little feet like that?” The snow was covered in little footprints. However, there were a great many of them that weren’t so tiny. Looking up at the man when he stood up, Keegan let a little of his lion go so he’d be healed a little. Standing up, not feeling so bad now that he had done that, he asked the man what the hell he was going on about. “The kid. Where is he?

You have to have seen him. Or are you one of those evangelistic people?” Keegan asked him what the hell that was supposed to mean. “You know, those religious shits that would rather die than to give up on someone.” “That’s not what that word means. And what the hell would I have to give up on someone? Unless it’s you. Then I’d gladly let the police handle this.” He reached for his brother, knowing that Cass had been on his way to meet him here today. Keegan told him what was going on and that he might need the police. “I don’t know anything about a kid. However, I do know you’re going to be in trouble for knocking me down and making my head hurt if you don’t get out of my face.” “Sure. Like I’m worried about you.”

The man released his bear enough that Keegan could see he was a brown bear, and wasn’t in good shape. When a shifter didn’t allow their other half out once in a while, things could get nasty. “So you see, you’re going to tell me what happened to the kid. He stole some fruit from my store.” “He must be desperate then. I’ve been by your store, Hank, and there isn’t usually anything I’d eat there.” He drew back his fist, and Keegan braced himself for the blow. But when nothing happened, he opened one eye to peer at the man. “Ronan? I didn’t know you were in town.” “Cass and I were going to surprise you by having dinner with you. Our wives are out shopping. This man bothering you, little brother?” He didn’t normally care for being referred to as little anything, but he thought Ronan was making it clear to Hank that he was the brother of the king of lions. “I can dispatch him now if you wish. I know his sleuth is looking for him too. Seems he’s been taking money from the coffers at the bruin.”

“Sounds like something he’d be doing. He said he was looking for a kid. I haven’t any idea because as soon as I came out of the building here, I was thrown to the ground. He said the kid did it, but I think Hank did it for shits and giggles.” Hank said it was the kid. “I’ve not seen one. He pointed out that there are footprints, but I’m thinking these could have been made at any time by anyone.” That was when he saw the kid across the street from them watching things going on. However, Keegan didn’t think it was a kid but a girl.

And she looked beaten to shit too. Telling his brother, Ronan told him that Cass was on the case. Since he didn’t have the head right now for figuring out what that meant, he sat down in the snow again and pulled a ball of the fluffy white stuff to his aching head. In less time than it would have taken him to walk home, six blocks from there, not only was the sleuth with them but Hank was being arrested for assault and battery. Cass had been with the girl for the last ten minutes, and it looked as if they were getting along fine. When the ambulance pulled up, Cass pushed him out of the way and put the girl in it. With a wink, Cass told him he could heal himself. Standing now, the snow coming down once again, he let it fall over his face.

There were things going on around him, but he really did have a headache from hell. Almost as soon as he decided he couldn’t stand much longer, he found himself in bed, at his home, with a compress on his head. Parker and his mom were standing over him. “I’m going to be sick.” As soon as he said it, Parker touched his head. Not only was he no longer ill, but his pain was gone as well. “What happened that I ended up here?” “Ronan said you looked like you needed some assistance. So I popped in and popped you here. Hank is in serious trouble, and the woman is being treated for her wounds.” Keegan asked her what lady. “The woman that Hank beat up that was going through his trash. Not a kid, as Hank thought, but a full-grown undernourished woman. She’s going to be fine.”

“Why do I feel like I’ve fallen through the rabbit hole here?” His mom laughed and handed him a glass of juice. “Mom, please tell me what’s going on. I’m a sick boy.” “You’re no more sick than I am. A woman was going through Hank’s trash to get herself something to eat. He caught her, thinking she was a boy and beat her up for what she’d been doing. Once she was able to escape, she zoomed by you and knocked you on your bottom. She’s the one that called Ronan to come to help you.” He asked if she was a lion too. “Honey, she’s a lioness. And yes, she is. Very nice girl too, if you ask me.” He didn’t but kept that to himself. As he laid there, thinking how much better he was feeling, he closed his eyes. Whatever came from this, Keegan had a feeling he was going to be having a mate, as well as someone gunning for him. Christ, why couldn’t things just be normal? He supposed that was a question for the fates. Closing his eyes, he let himself go to sleep. It was going to be a long day tomorrow, what with moving and getting himself set up.

Ramon Dalton’s Kiss Release Blitz&Giveaway

Someone wanted Caiti dead. Her body had been so riddled with poison that when the fairies removed it, it would take the help of CJ and Ramon to save her. Ramon was instructed to convert her to a vampire, or she would die.

Unsure how his new mate would react when she recovered, Ramon enlisted the help of the kiss to protect her. Both their survival depended on it.

AMAZON USA https://amzn.to/3zoU4aJ
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/3JjJczk
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/3PUwDx2
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/ramon-kathi-s-barton/1141917725?ean=2940186621119
GOOGLE PLAY https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kathi_S_Barton_Ramon?id=73R-EAAAQBAJ
SMASHWORDS https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1158395
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/ramon-6
ITUNES COMING SOON
PAPERBACK https://amzn.to/3oI3Uzj

Add it to your book list today!!!!

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/61791386-ramon?from_search=true&from_srp=true&qid=1CUuo2xOzT&rank=1

Kelly Roman was good at her job. As a forensic anthropologist, she could help the dead and help the families find closure. The one thing she hated about her job was her boss, Shamus Van. That man was out to sabotage everything she did. And when he brought in the new chief of police, Bancroft Dalton, to make her look bad, that was the last straw. She’d quit before they had a chance to fire her.

When Bancroft showed up at her front door, he asked to be invited in, and when he told her he couldn’t lie to her, it set off all kinds of bells and whistles in Kelly’s suspicions. It wasn’t the fact that he was a vampire that bothered her, it was the part about him not being able to lie to her. She knew shifters couldn’t lie to their mates. There was no way in hell she was letting a man barge into her life and take over….

Elizabeth Strickland, Lizzy, to her friends, found herself in a predicament. The last thing she remembered was attending her own bachelorette party, then waking up in a cave with six other women. They all had wounds, just like hers, only they were dead. Lizzy had awakened as a newborn vampire. She had no idea why they died, and she had lived, but she had wished every day that she had died with them.

Stanley Remy, better known as just Remy, was an old vampire and close friends with Bancroft, their leader. He had his own issues. He was being falsely charged with making baby vamps and leaving them to fend for themselves.

Lizzy just wanted the bodies of the other women found. Once they were, she had every intention of meeting the sun. What she didn’t need were two overbearing old vampires dictating to her what she could and couldn’t do. She had killed her maker, she wouldn’t hesitate to take them out if they didn’t let her be.

But then Remy gifted her with something she never thought she’d have again. To feel the sun without burning. She could have her life back. Maybe this mate thing wouldn’t be so bad after all.

If only it were that simple….

Donald had been in the room with the women for a while. He knew one of them was his mate, but their scents were so similar he couldn’t tell which one it was. He took the women home one at a time. CJ and Rachel were the last to leave. It was then that Donald knew which one was his mate. He didn’t know which one of them was taking it harder, either.

Gracie had just lost the one person that meant the most to her. Craig, the ancient vampire that had raised her. He wasn’t just a father figure. He was her best friend. Now, she had been shot too, but she would honor his final wishes, find Bancroft, the king of the vampires and go to him. She wasn’t a vampire. She was so much more. The problem was that Gracie trusted no one.

As soon as she was around him, Gracie knew that Clyde, an ancient vampire, was her mate, but she was in no hurry to tell him. She had to deal with Bancroft first. The one responsible for Craig’s death was plotting to kill them all.

Dalton’s Kiss Series

  1. Bancroft https://amzn.to/2KPuxOP
  2. Stanley https://amzn.to/33rA2O3
  3. Donald https://amzn.to/32NsC6w
  4. Clyde https://amzn.to/3oMPij8

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag All Sizes are available also we have mousepads and bbq aprons too

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

 

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
Julie A Swaney Signed Totebag
Debby Hudson  T-Shirt & Totebag
Eva Millien  Signed Paperback 

 

Second Chance Winner
is
Linda Brashears

 

Packages will be mailed out 
first week of Aug 2022

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote
Courtney Kinder Signed Paperback
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Christina Flynn Tea Totaler
Kristin Peterson Signed Paperback
Teri Bellview Signed Paperback
Renee Johnson T-Shirt & Tote
Shirley Coursey T-Shirt & Tote
Heather Angalet Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak T-Shirt & Tote
Peggy Serour Tea Totaler
Lovie Ball Tea Totaler
Nicole Morgan Tea Totaler

 

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

 

Happy Reading,

 

SECOND CHANCE DRAWING FOR A MYSTERY PRIZE !!!!!!!

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeY7nkIAHQCgnvBKbIjj6Sws3yR4e98oH-xU2NYb_UNRtqEUQ/viewform

Prologue


Ramon wasn’t sure how it had happened, but he knew that Caiti, what she had never been called before, was going to make a difference in his life like none other. Reaching for her hand, he was glad when she allowed it. “I read about your trauma some years ago. I’ve never been one to read the newspaper, but I did that day. And the weeks following.” Caiti laid down, never looking at him, nor did she release his hand. “I still to this day believe there was more to that day than was ever reported. I don’t believe, not even knowing you now, that you lived a better life than you did at home with your family, as the papers speculated some months later.” “She didn’t want me.” He nodded, waiting for her to say more.

“Grandma wasn’t mean to me. She never demanded anything of me, nor did she question me about things that had been going on in the house. The police did, as did the doctors. But no one ever got anything more than she wanted them to have. Which was nothing.” “Did you have a good life living with your parents?” She said it had been a life. She’d had rules to follow, such as making sure that when her other grandmother came over, she kept to her room and out of sight. “Who was it that told you to do that?” “My mother. She didn’t like Grandmother. Nor did she like my dad, but she said it was the life she’d chosen, and it was all she had.” Ramon nodded but didn’t say anything. She dozed off and on throughout the night. Twice she woke up and said nothing, but he could tell that whatever had awakened her so violently was something she had dreamed about before. Ramon never let go of her hand, nor did he leave even after Clyde did. Caiti had told Clyde she was safe now, whatever that had meant between the two of them. He did contact him, telling him about the child as well as her parents.

Ramon was glad for the two of them. However, he was a little nervous about why Caiti had felt his good friend would be a better father to a human than the parents would have. Ramon didn’t stand when the doctor that had seen Caiti in the emergency room came into her room after a short knock. He told him she would be going home tomorrow, as he wanted to observe her and make sure she was all right. Ramon told him he was a doctor and could care for her needs, but the doctor still wouldn’t sign the paperwork for her to leave. Something occurred to him at that moment, and he reached out to Kelly for help. The doctor that is here, can you tell me what he looks like? Then compare him to anything you can find online about him. She said she could do that easily. Kelly had been in charge of the FBI for some time now, and he’d never been so happy for her help. When she got back to him, he had a feeling she was just as surprised as he was about what she’d found. So he’s dead. Been dead for some time now. So who do you think this man is that is treating her? I have no idea why, but I think we’re sitting ducks here.

I’m sending you some agents. He told her that he’d rather have the kiss there with him. All right. I’ll tell Banny. He’ll be there before anyone else can be, anyway. Also, I’ll contact CJ, as well as Gracie and the other women. Good. The doctor was going on about how she was going to have to go down for some tests. Ramon asked him what sort of tests they were going to be running on her. Something else occurred to him. Caiti was drugged. Not just dozing but fighting whatever was in her IV. I’m going to leave here with her as soon as the others arrive. This doctor, or whoever he is, said he was going to have someone run her down to get some blood tests and won’t tell me what they are. He’s also, knowing that we’re not married, going to have me escorted out. Please tell them to— Gwyneth is here now. Gwyneth had been around for a very long time, and she didn’t suffer fools at all. “There you are, my…why is she so drugged up?” She turned to the doctor. “She was only supposed to be treated in the ER, then released. Why is she still feeling the effects of the little bit of pain medication she was given down there?”

“The two of you need to leave here. Neither of you are related to this young woman, and she needs to have the best of care.” The others showed up just as the doctor was calling security on them. “You all need to leave here. This is a private room, and Caitlynne needs her rest.” “Leave.” It was Banny that got the man to leave them alone. As soon as he was gone, Banny turned to him. “Take her to your home, Ramon. Once there, I need for you to get her to wake. There will be a number of faeries there with you that will do your bidding. I’m not entirely sure what’s going on, but she needs to get out of here now.” Taking her home via his magic, he laid her gently on the bed. A faerie named Peanut stood on the pillow with her. Ramon told him what was going on. “She’s been drugged. The others and I, we can take that out of her system, but she will need you to give her your blood. I’m not sure how that will affect her, my lord, but she is going to die if we don’t work now.”

Telling him to do what he needed, Ramon called for Clyde. After telling him what Peanut had said, he said he’d help. Even CJ showed up to begin the process of removing the poison from her blood. “They want her dead. We can save her, my lord, but you must be ready to help her.” Not having any idea what that might mean, he stood by as CJ put her hands on Caiti’s chest. When she pulled back, he could see that her hands were covered in what he could only assume was the poison. She turned back to her task as she spoke to him. “This isn’t a poison like anything I’ve ever felt before. It was to shut down her organs. Also, it’s manmade. If not for your quick thinking, I’m afraid it would have been too late. As it is now, Ramon, you’re going to have to convert her.” He told her he’d never done that before. “Well, find someone that has and talk to them. But you’re going to have to act fast. Even with the poison out of her, she’s still got a great deal of damage happening right now.” It was Gwyneth that joined him in the room. Once CJ had done as much as she could by removing most of her blood from her body, Gwyneth told him to give Caiti as much as he could. Then she would give her some of herself. With the powerful blood they both had, she would convert quickly or die.

Ramon hoped to Christ this was going to work. Just meeting his mate only to have her die after all this time of waiting for her, he didn’t know what he’d do. He did know that he’d have to be put down at some point if she didn’t make it. After nearly two hours of giving her his and Gwyneth’s blood off and on, he could see the changes finally happening to Caiti. Twice while they’d been working on converting her, she’d stopped responding. Not just not breathing, but her heart had stopped, and there had been no brain activity. Normal things, he’d been told. However, he was terrified out of his mind for her. “There is a cave not far from here that you two need to go to. Not only will it keep her safe, but it will be a good place for you to train her how to be a vampire. She’ll need that, Ramon. The only thing that worries me now is if she will have your traits or those of a baby vamp.” He nodded at Banny as he watched color come back to Caiti’s lips. “I’ll come to you in a couple of days.

All of us will. The place has been set up for you, so you’ll not have to give up any of the comforts she might be used to, but you have to stay out of sight. Also, you should know that Gracie found a tracker in her wound when she was being converted. There seem to be no steps these people won’t take to have her.” “Why?” Banny said that for now, he really didn’t know. “All right. But don’t expect me to be a nice guy if anyone shows up without me knowing them. I will kill anyone that comes sniffing around us while hiding.” “Good.” Ramon wasn’t sure what he had expected from his friend, but he was glad for it. “Also, there will be a lot of faeries there. Not only is Aurora sending help, but so are CJ and Melisandre. You should be about as safe as you can be.” As soon as he entered the large cave, he had to laugh. Having the comforts of home was not what he had. Ramon thought this could well be his home for the way it looked. He laid Caiti on the large bed and went to inspect the rest of the area. There was a kitchen of sorts, with a large refrigerator that seemed to be running on magic.

A table that would seat a couple of people in a dining area he loved. The table was made of a long piece of stone that was as polished as anything he’d ever seen before. There were chairs around it, but for the most part, the room looked like something he’d seen during medieval times. A very large stone fireplace was burning against the cold of the stone rooms. He thought it would easily roast an entire cow, if not a herd. Even as he warmed himself by it, he felt the earth shake a little under his feet and went to see if his Caiti was all right. There were several little people in the room with her as she still lay quietly on the bed. “We’ve adjusted the room for her, my lord. The fire will run as long as she is recovering. After that, it will only take a thought for her to have it turn back to warmth for her.” He thanked the little person. “We have also adjusted the bed for the two of you. It will grow with the need you have for it. While she is resting, it will accommodate her. If you should wish to rest with her, it will widen for you both. Also, the bed is made with the finest of magic. Neither she nor you will ever have a bad night’s sleep upon it.”

“Thank you again.” He was glad there were no windows, but he did worry about her being without them. “She was forever staring out the window while in the care of the hospital. I don’t know if she was watching for someone to come or enjoyed the view. I should like it if she were to have one. One that changed with her needs. She is my mate, as you are aware, and I only want the best for her.” “Of course you do, my lord. She will have it too. Several places in this mountain have been carved out for the two of you should you wish it. A very private hot bath is just beyond that wall there. Also, there is a place where she can be hidden should someone come around. I do not foresee that happening, as we are all keeping her safe, but should it happen, you are only to take her to the wall there, and it will cover you both for as long as you need.” He was shown the area and was glad for it. “I’m to tell you that the doctor that treated the young woman so horribly has not been killed. Lady Kelly is using him to find out who he is working for if she can. She thinks him too dumb to be working alone.

I believe I must agree with her on this.” “I have some things in the home I have in England that I would like brought here. It was my plan at some point to return there to bring them back, but I would like them here now. I have fallen in love with this arrangement we’re using now. It’s quiet and just what I’d like should I need a place to go to unwind.” The faerie told him his name was Blue and said he had taken the information from his mind when he made this area for them. “I thank you again for that. Should Caiti need anything or wish to make changes, you are to do it. She is the only reason I breathe now, and I wish only for her to be as happy as I can make her.” It took them working for several hours side by side to make a few adjustments to the living arrangements where they were staying. Blue and several other faeries would be living in the cave with them for the time being, but after Caiti was awake and feeling better, there would be more. When he went to check on Caiti at around midnight, she was sitting on the side of the bed.

Saying her name, she looked up at him and frowned. He asked her what she remembered. It took her several moments before she answered him. “I was ill, I think,” Ramon told her everything that had happened while she’d been in the hospital. He also told her where they were and why. She listened, asking questions when she wasn’t sure of things, and he answered them honestly. “This person, you believe, is after me. Have you any information on him?” “Only in that Kelly thinks he’s not working alone.” She nodded, and he helped her stand. “You need anything, you only need to call out, and everyone here will be there for you.” “I’d like a shower if you’d not mind. Is that possible?” Apparently, no one had thought of a bathroom, and he had to laugh. “I guess it won’t be possible since we’re living in a cave.” “It is ready, my lady.” Blue told her he was sorry for being so short-sighted. “I never thought you’d be up and about so soon, or your needs might have occurred to me before you needed to have them. I am profoundly sorry.”

He started to tell the faerie it was all right when Caiti smiled at Blue. “It’s all right. I don’t know what is going on right now, but the simple fact that I’ve been resting on a very wonderful bed and have been treated so nicely makes any minor adjustments seem so small. You’ve done us a great service, Blue, in making this place safe and comfy.” The shower was perfect, she told him. If she had told him to let her alone in the large room, he would have, but since she didn’t mind that he was in the room with her when she stripped down, he said nothing. However, he was glad he was there when she became a little too weak to stand on her own toward the end. She rested in a chair that hadn’t been in the room before. When Caiti asked him what had happened after the doctor had tried to take her to have tests, he told her that in order to save her life, he’d had to convert her. Otherwise, her organs would have shut down completely, and she would have died. “I guess you’re aware that I didn’t have much in the way of a reason to live before today.” He asked her if she still felt that way. “I’m not sure. I do feel like I’ve been given a better outlook on life, but as for not wanting to perish? I’m not sure just yet. Things are certainly different.”

“Yes, they are.” Ramon told her about himself. What he thought his age was. “I’ve no idea. After a time, it became meaningless for me, much like it has for the others I know. My parents are both alive, though I rarely see them. I have a grandma as well that I don’t care for, but I see her sometimes too.” “Your parents must be very old.” They both laughed. “Mine are all dead. I’ve no one left. I don’t even own a dog, though I must admit that is something that I have wished for my entire life.” The little puppy appeared on her lap seconds later. He didn’t move, not sure what he was supposed to think of a dog. Most creatures, human pets, didn’t like his kind. Not that he blamed them. In his time, he had, in emergency situations, taken what he needed from the little creatures. “Oh, how beautiful.” She held the little dog, a beagle if he didn’t miss his bet, to her cheek. “She’s so soft, Ramon. Come and pet her.”

He couldn’t have turned her down if she’d asked him to pet an alligator. As soon as his hand was near the little dog’s head, it licked him as if he knew he’d kill anyone that tried to harm his mistress. Ramon looked at Blue when he cleared his throat. “The earth did this for her, my lord. We’ve no idea of animals enough to have brought her one. This little creature will not harm any of us or you. I have spoken to the earth, and they have said that it is so.” Thanking the man again, he nodded before speaking again. “There is food for the dog in the pantry, as well as a bowl for food and water. While we have not much in the way of encounters with the puppy, I have read his mind in things he wished. One of the faeries will walk him when necessary to keep the two of you safe for this time.” “Make it so that when he leaves here with one of the others, he isn’t seen. Nor you. I don’t wish anyone of you to be harmed with him either.” Blue said he’d take care of it.

“You’re doing so much for us, sir, that I feel as if telling you thank you is very little in comparison.” “You have given us a great honor in being able to help you and your mate through all this.” Ramon looked at Caiti when she said his name. “My lady?” “Don’t put yourself in harm’s way for me, Blue. None of you. I would never be able to live with myself if anything should happen to such wonderful creatures.” He looked at him, then back at Caiti when she spoke again. “You’ll do this for me, won’t you?” “I cannot, my lady. Above my own life, as it would be for Lord Ramon here, I will die to make you and this little puppy safe. It is my duty to do so and an honor for us to have been chosen to serve you.” He looked so proud of himself that Ramon was sure that his shirt buttons would pop off. “We have, above all other faeries of the world, been picked to come here and ensure your every need is met. That above all else, you are as safe as our own children would be in their beds. Nay, to not serve you the way you deserve would be a blemish on our kind. Not just all faeries but all creatures of the earth. Queen CJ, she’s a good and wonderful queen to us all, but should we, as she said, fuck this up, she will be a wrath like we’ve never seen before.

I believe her. While we can make mistakes—she said that is the only way we can improve on ourselves—we are not to just simply let things go when we see a need. Why I do believe she’d hurt us for decades to come and those behind us, should we simply allow you to be harmed. She is a wonderful queen, but she is also someone we are afeared of.” When Blue left them to see to the puppy, Ramon burst out laughing. Caiti looked at him as his laughter got the better of him several times in just a few moments. She had to ask him several times to tell her what he had found so funny. “They’re afraid of CJ. She’s more than likely…well, you’ve met her. Does she strike you as someone they should be afeared of, as he put it?” Caiti told him she didn’t know her that well, but she did seem to be very soft-hearted. “She is anything but that. However, thinking along those lines is what will get you killed by her too.

CJ is funny, hard, and full of life. She is also the first person I would call upon if I were in trouble. I’d never tell Banny that, but I think he might know it. She isn’t one to mess with. None of the women in this kiss are.” “Am I a part of this kiss now?” He said she was as long as she wanted to be. “Don’t treat me like this, Ramon. I want you to have opinions too. I also want you to give them to me when I ask you for them.” “All right.” She laughed when the puppy came running back into the room with them. “I think someone missed me. How about you show me around our new home, and then we talk about this conversion I’ve had done to me. That way, I won’t be surprised too much about changes.” Roman was as happy as he’d ever been. Several times he had to reach out to one of the others around the kiss and let them know things that Caiti would say to him casually. He was positive she was giving him information she’d not thought of as helpful too. Like the fact that she’d been thinking she’d been followed for some time.

Also, she’d not been working for several places that tried to find her for the last three weeks. The list she gave him he turned over to Kelly. “This place is large, isn’t it?” He said he thought it was growing with her needs. “Oh, I guess I never thought of that. All right. Well, I’m ready for bed. Not with you right now, but I do find myself very tired. Is it the poison?” “I would imagine it’s a great many things.” He took her to the bedroom he’d brought her to first. “You only need to call out for me, and I’ll be here. There is some work I can do while you’re resting that will keep me busy.” Caiti was nearly asleep when he left the room. The roaring fire lit up the room and her face, so he was sure she’d be all right. Finding a computer room set up for himself, he and Boop, the dog’s name, went to the room to work. There was a bed set up for the pup and a fire for him as well. Ramon thought he could really get used to this.

Layton Tate’s Crossing Release Blitz & Giveaway

Cody Martin was a good attorney. Never appreciated at her job, she still never wavered in her loyalty. And when she was suddenly fired for no reason, she found it would be the perfect opportunity to start a business with her brother Matt.

Layton Tate was also an attorney, but he and his brother Loren were bogged down with cases and needed to hire a new firm to help with their caseload. Cody would make a good candidate as her stellar reputation proceeded her. He reached out to shake Cody’s hand. The blast sent them both reeling to opposite sides of the room and shocking the family. Layton and his wolf both knew what that meant.

Cody wasn’t stupid, she knew what Layton was to her too, but she had to make sure the ground rules were straight before she’d have anything to do with him. No one would be pushing her around, mate or no mate….

AMAZON USA https://amzn.to/3aK2eSx
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/3yPd29W
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/3IHTau4
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/layton-kathi-s-barton/1141799138?ean=2940186574798
GOOGLE PLAY https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kathi_S_Barton_Layton?id=yGh7EAAAQBAJ
SMASHWORDS https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1156225
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/layton-2
ITUNES
PAPERBACK https://amzn.to/3yLwrZA

ADD IT TO YOUR BOOK LIST TODAY

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/61463329-layton

Caitlynne’s job was difficult. Doing what she did for the government not only put herself at risk but any friends or family she had could become a target. When her sister was hurt, she blamed herself even though it had nothing to do with her directly. It didn’t matter. It was time for her to quit before someone she cared about ended up dead.

Joel Tate had been in the building to meet with Becca Jacobson when she was attacked. To save her, Joel had to change her into what he was, a wolf. More or less guarding her in the hospital, Joel met her sister, Caitlynne, when she was brought to the hospital to see her sister. As soon as Caitlynne was close enough to him to get her scent, he knew she was his mate.

Caitlynne’s disappearing act from her job started things rolling. Her boss wasn’t taking I quit as an answer. When they tried to kill her by setting her apartment on fire, Joel thought it was time to take the situation into his own hands….

Joel https://amzn.to/3n8ztC2

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag All Sizes are available also we have mousepads and bbq aprons too




https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
Lovie Ball Tea Totaler
Nicole Morgan Tea Totaler

Second Chance Winner
is
Kristin Peterson

Packages will be mailed on
July 18th 2022

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote
Courtney Kinder Signed Paperback
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Christina Flynn Tea Totaler
Kristin Peterson Signed Paperback
Teri Bellview Signed Paperback
Renee Johnson T-Shirt & Tote
Shirley Coursey T-Shirt & Tote
Heather Angalet Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak T-Shirt & Tote
Peggy Serour Tea Totaler
Lovie Ball Tea Totaler
Nicole Morgan Tea Totaler

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

Happy Reading,

SECOND CHANCE DRAWING FOR A MYSTERY PRIZE !!!!!!!

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeY7nkIAHQCgnvBKbIjj6Sws3yR4e98oH-xU2NYb_UNRtqEUQ/viewform

Prologue


“Dad, we can make this work for us.” Cody was getting frustrated with her father. He was just too wishy-washy for her today. Well, most days of late. When he walked around the store they were thinking of buying for them to change into an apartment for the two of them, she sat down on the wire wheel that had been brought in by a construction company just this morning. She had three messages and several emails. Cody wouldn’t answer the emails or the messages unless it was either from her sister or brother. She was on her own personal time, and she didn’t do work when she was enjoying her time off. But her family should be here with them.

The two of them had set this up for Dad. Answering the one from Paige, she asked her what she wanted. All the message said was, Get back to me. Instead of messaging her back, she simply called her. “Yes? What is it now, Paige?” Her sister huffed at her. As her older sister by only ten months, Paige was acting more like their grandma all the time. “I’m at the mall thing with Dad. Do you have something to add to this? Other than you can’t tear yourself away for an hour to come here?” “Why are you so snotty with me all the time?” She didn’t bother answering her.

“Grandma was just here. She’s pissed off because she wasn’t told about any of this.” “That’s funny. You told me that you told her and even marked it on her calendar for her.” Paige huffed again. “Did you or did you not tell her? Because as sure as shit, I’m betting she’s on her way here now.” “She is, and no, I didn’t tell her. Grandma will have opinions that don’t matter, and then she’ll insist that she help with the remodeling. I don’t want her to be involved. Her tastes don’t run along the same line as mine do.” Cody told her that her opinion didn’t matter either since she wasn’t living there.

“And I suppose you would decorate it the way you like. You have an odd taste in everything, Cody. Why would anyone want to live in a bohemian apartment like you must have?” She didn’t bother correcting her sister. Paige only heard what she wanted to hear. Not that she was nasty or anything—not that she couldn’t be—but Paige was way old before her time. Paige asked if she was still on the line. “I am. I was just thinking that you’ve never been to my apartment, and I’ve no idea what you think a bohemian place would even look like. What is wrong with you today? You’re acting like someone shit in your oatmeal or something. Is Brian giving you a hard time about your spending? I wouldn’t blame him if he cut you off.”

Now that was something that Paige did well. However, it was rarely for herself. She’d buy up pallets of diapers and bottled water to have set aside for some huge catastrophe. Not just that, but she’d also have hundreds of dollars worth of gift certificates to hand out to the people hurting from one tragedy or another. She had a good heart, even if it was her sister. “Grandma is on her way there. She left here in a huff after leaving the kids, so wound up, it’s going to take me hours to get them calmed down. She didn’t even have to give them candy or anything.


She just has a way about her.” Cody remembered that well about her grandma. And Cody also knew that Grandma had slipped the kids candy too. A great deal of it, if she had to bet on it. “I have three meetings today. The first one is with the school board at the private school the kids go to. Then there is the meeting I have with Kelly’s teacher. She said she’s falling behind. I want to figure out what is going on with her.” “Is she behind or bored?” Paige told her what she thought was going on. “Could be that. But didn’t they tell you she didn’t need a tutor? I mean, that was a huge meeting, if I remember correctly.”

“It was that ended in me giving in. I also think she needs glasses. She said there isn’t anyone else in the class that wears glasses, and Kelly refuses to get them. I swear, she acts more like you daily.” She thanked her sister. “That was not meant as a compliment, Cody, and you well know it.” “I will take it where I can get it.” She looked at the front door of the place she and her dad were in. “I can see Grandma now. I’ll let you go so I can tell her you’re a snob.” “Cody Martin, I swear, you’re such a bitch.” Laughing, she hung up on her sister and went to hug her grandma. “Paige said you riled up her kids.

Good for you.” “They’re stuck in that house today because it’s raining. When you were little, you’d strip down to your panties and run right out in it. Where is my son? I think I might just have to talk him into buying a bigger place so I can come to visit the two of you a lot. Or buy one for me too. What do you think?” Dad came out of the backroom then and said he’d feel better if he knew someone here. Cody told him that he’d know her. “Oh, Peashaw, Herby. You’re a grown assed man. I’m sure you remember how to make friends.” “As pleasant as ever to see you, Mom.” He kissed her on the cheek when it was offered to him. “I think I’ll take this one.

It’s not too large, and I am liking the back room of it. There is already a nice sized bathroom back there. It’ll need some decorating to make it look less like an industrial one and to add in a shower, but it’s nice.” “They said we can have walls put in as soon as you sign the contract.” Cody looked at her grandma. “Let’s go and find you a place. Unless you’d like to live here until you decide. Dad and I were just talking about how he was going to put in three bedrooms so you could.” “Do that, Mom. I’d love to have you staying here with us. Or me when Cody is away.” He made it sound like she was gone for days at a time when she only worked at the law firm in town.

“We could have fun like we did when my Beth was alive. Say you’ll live here with me.” “I don’t know, son. What will you do when I have a gentleman friend over for a night of wild, loud sex?” Dad said he’d listen at her door for input when he had someone over. “Oh, go on with you. Herby, a mother couldn’t have asked for a better son. Trust me, I’ve asked. All right. If you’re serious, I’ll do it. And if you cramp my style, well, I’ll just bury you in the parking lot and be done with you. Now, out to dinner after we sign the contracts, and it’s my treat.”


The contract was straightforward and what she had expected. There were several loopholes in it, mostly in her dad’s favor, but he was all right with that, he told her. Once he wrote out the check for the entire asking amount, they were on their way to dinner. Her dad had money to spare. She did too, but not a great deal. Being an attorney for a small law firm had gotten her some good money, but she’d been paying off her student loans since she’d gotten out of college, and that was taking a great deal out of her checks. Paige’s husband was an attorney as well, but for a very large firm. His name was on the door, Peter Brown, while Cody barely made a blip on the radar for the people she worked with.

Paige had been a housewife, a title Paige detested since they’d been married. Matthew, their brother, was an architect. He didn’t design houses like most of the people in the firm where he worked but worked on things like solar panels for houses. Water in the home that could be used for other things once it was used in the shower or such. Matt, in his spare time, designed furniture for kids’ rooms. Like her, Matt was single and didn’t date all that much. But for different reasons. Paige had his entire line of children’s things. Cody would, too, if she ever found a man to stick around long enough for her to want to marry him. Cody knew she was hard on men. They’d try and bullshit themselves into something more than they were. Little did they know that Cody ran a background check on anyone she dated.

Dad said she was smart for doing that. Paige told her she took all the fun out of getting to know someone. So far, she’d been nearly on a date with a pedophile, a drug dealer, as well as a man that had very scary tastes in sex—painful and violent sex. There were other men she had dated, but they were either too boring, lazy or thought since she was an attorney, she could represent them for free. Nope, not going to happen. Matt was able to join them for dinner. Paige arrived late but did have dessert with them. Peter, she told them, had had to work late, and that was why she’d been late. Cody didn’t say anything, as she doubted very much that her sister would hear what she had to say. That her husband was having an affair with his secretary. And it had been going on since before he’d married Paige.

“The board is going to look into some things that could improve the kind of teachers that we’re getting to apply. I was hoping for some that were new out of college, but they want older, more stable teachers. I don’t even know what that means.” Grandma said they wanted women that didn’t have children in the middle of the term. “Well, that’s not fair. We have a good school there that pays well. The students that come out of there go on to college and succeed too.” “Be that as it may, they have how many teachers out now on maternity leave? One of them is a spouse to a woman that is out, correct?” Matt looked at Cody when Paige answered his question. “How about you? You ready to settle down and have a houseful of kids so I can spoil them and be the world’s greatest uncle to them?”


“When you have a baby, I’ll think about it.” It was an ongoing joke for the two of them. Everyone at the table knew Matt was gay. No one cared. In fact, Grandma was the one that had had a talk about it with Matt when he’d been about fourteen. Turned out she was right, and he no longer went around with a long look on his face. “Oh, there is a toy company expanding in town. I know you’ve talked to the owner before, but I think his daughter is now running the place. I don’t know a great deal about the woman that runs it, but she is recently married and has a baby on the way.

They’re also good friends with the people who own Tate’s Crossing.” “I remember them.” Grandma had to think a moment. “Yes, the father is Joseph, and his wife…let me think…was Lorraine. She died some time ago, I think.” “That’s right. She was hit by a car as her wolf. Back then, there was another pack master, or they both would have been immortal.

Joseph took over when most of the others left and only had to govern himself and his boys. Sad state of affairs that.” Matt laughed as he continued. “I’m sorry to bring this up now, but they’re the biggest men I’ve ever seen. Each of them played sports in high school. No one would beat them. Also, if I remember correctly, the youngest one isn’t with the firm but is a kindergarten teacher. A good one, too, from all accounts. Paige, you might want to recruit him. He might be a good fit for the school.” “He’s been a teacher since he got out of college. The oldest son, Joel, is recently married as well. They’re all well respected, as a whole and personally. They bought the old church in their town and are changing it into a venue to hold weddings and receptions.”

Grandma asked Cody if she’d done a background check on them. “Yes. They also own the mall development project that Dad is going to be staying at. I needed to know it wasn’t a fly-by-night group that was going to take his money and run.” “Good for you, honey. I feel much better just knowing you’re taking care of me.” Paige said she was as well, and Dad patted her on the hand. “I know you do, baby. I know that. Oh, before I forget to tell you, there will be a playground put in, as well as a garden area that, as residents, we can use.

I’m very excited about getting into gardening some.” “You’ll have to teach them how to grow things in your garden, Dad. The kids will love working in the dirt with you. Maybe you can wear them down a lot before you bring them home.” The rest of their meal, dessert anyway, was spent bantering back and forth about everything. Cody did notice that Matt was very quiet. He’d speak and answer questions, but he wasn’t his usual self. After they were gathering up their things to go, she stopped him. At first, she wasn’t sure he was going to tell her what was wrong, but when everyone left them there, he finally spilled the beans. “Don’t do anything about it.

You have to promise me you’ll stay out of this.” She didn’t even blink at him. “I knew you’d do that. I’ve been found out at work. They’re ‘looking into things,’ I was told this morning. I’ve been thinking about it all day, and I’m about ready to join you in the law firm we’ve talked about for years.”


“I’ll find us a building tomorrow.” Matt laughed. “Hey, I’m not going to give you time to change your mind. We’ll work well together. Like we always do.” “I’m worried someone is going to come forward and say something about me that will get me fired.” She asked if he thought they’d pay someone to say something. “Forever my hero, aren’t you? You didn’t even think I might have done something wrong, did you?” “I didn’t. Matt, you’re too nice of a guy for that sort of shit. Don’t shit where you eat is something you’ve told me all my life. I know you well enough to know you’d practice what you preach. Can I at least look into things for you? Not publicly, but enough that I can give you a heads up if they’re making shit up?”

“Yes. I’d like that. So long as you don’t make more waves than I have right now.” She said she’d not do that to him. He was her favorite brother. “I’m also your only brother. Speaking of which, do you know what’s going on with Peter? I’m sure no one works that late when they have their name on the firm’s stationery.” “He’s fucking Shelby.” He nodded, and she knew he’d figured that out as well. “I’ve not told Paige, but I will if he keeps this up. If she finds out I knew and didn’t tell her, she’ll be pissy with me.

But it’s not something you can just say without making her feel bad. Like it’s her fault or something.” “She would think that too.” They both made their way out to their cars. “Just be on the lookout for my job, and I’ll look into Peter’s life. I don’t mind telling her, either. Like you said, she’s going to have to know. I’m just really glad you had him sign that prenup when they married. You never told me how you got him to sign it.” “I told him I knew what he was doing, and if he didn’t sign it, I’d make sure the wedding didn’t happen.

He only wanted to marry her because she was pregnant with Kelly at the time. There is no love between the two of them.” Matt said he didn’t think so, either. “She’s going to take it hard no matter who tells her. I was thinking I’d let it slip to Grandma and have her tell her. She’d not hold back, but at least she’d know.” “Yes, she would.” Matt kissed her on the cheek and then hugged her tightly. “I love you, little sister. More than I think I love anyone else. Just be yourself, and I know you’re going to go far.” “I’m going to find us a building, Matt. All right?” He nodded and got into his car, and drove off. There was more she’d bet on it, but she’d wait to find out. Matt was her big brother and her biggest supporter. She wasn’t going to allow anyone to harm him.

Shawn Wilkerson Dynasty Release Blitz & Giveaway

Pete Tolliver was doing just fine, and when a man came into the tavern she owned asking for a Pete Tolliver, all sorts of warning bells went off in her head. She went by Pete for a reason, to keep her identity a secret. She didn’t like people and didn’t want to be bothered. She was Petunia, a well-known romance author, but she didn’t like the attention her fame brought her, so she simply went by Pete.

When Watts asked Shawn to check on a bed and breakfast his mother had left him in Europe, and while he was there to find a person in the same town by the name of Pete Tolliver, Shawn jumped at the chance. He could use a vacation, plus helping the old man in the hospital find his relative was a boost to his soul. He liked the old man.

When he met “Pete,” he liked her instantly. She was full of just enough spunk and sass that he wanted to get to know her better. And he was doing just that when the truck came from out of nowhere and put him in the hospital….

AMAZON USA https://amzn.to/3R12jlf
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/3unYs89
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/3bQCEf3
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/shawn-kathi-s-barton/1141724386?ean=2940186743132
GOOGLE PLAY https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kathi_S_Barton_Shawn?id=yqZ4EAAAQBAJ
SMASHWORDS https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1154410
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/shawn-2
ITUNES http://books.apple.com/us/book/id6443074170
PAPERBACK https://amzn.to/3NUaPjj

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/61385188-shawn
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/61385188-shawn

When Marsden Wilkerson received the phone call that his mother had been in a car accident, he wasn’t letting anything get in his way to get to her. Not a pushy boss, and especially not his Aunt Eita. Then his world crumbled when the doctors told him that his mother, Holly, didn’t make it.
Gabriella Farley, Abby, could hold her own, and she wasn’t about to take any flack from a rich bitch like Penelope Wilkerson.

All the Wilkerson women, with the exception of Holly, could fit that description. Abby stood up for Mars at the funeral home even though she really didn’t know him. What she did know was his mother, Holly, was a fine woman, and the family had given them both the shaft Mars’s entire life.

Mars wanted to apologize for his Aunt’s actions, but there was something about Abby that sparked a flame in his heart. From the first kiss, they knew they had something special, but going against the Wilkerson family could be very dangerous. Will this new love be doomed from the start?

Amy Hamilton never had much of a home life growing up. Her sister Phoenix and her mother demanded all the attention, so much so that she and her father didn’t have a relationship at all. Now that her father was filing for a divorce, he felt guilty for not being a part of her life and wanted to make up for it, but Amy wasn’t sure she was ready for that.

North Wilkerson had a similar upbringing. Although his mother was dead now, before her death, she was an awful person and an even worse mother. After having sworn off family ties to his parents, he was just now allowing his father back into his life.

Amy and Booker Wilkerson were close friends in college. Amy was only supposed to be in town for a few days, and when Booker called inviting her to dinner, she couldn’t pass up the opportunity to catch up on old times. When Booker’s cousin North and his uncle joined them for dinner, they all had a blast.

But when North just showed up at her father’s house and took over, Amy wasn’t sure what to think of him. What did he think he was doing? She barely knew him. Amy needed to nip this in the bud before it went much further. She was perfectly capable of taking care of herself. She didn’t need a man now, or would she ever need a man, any man….

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is watson-453x680-1.jpg
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 70241-synopsis.jpg
Rayne just wanted to finish nursing school and take care of her grandda. He was all she had left. She had only left the house for a short time, and when she returned, he was gone, and there was blood everywhere. She panicked. She called the number her grandda had written down for emergencies.
When Watson answered his phone, he had trouble understanding the hysterical young woman on the other end. And when he got her to calm down enough to find out what was going on, being a doctor, he was ready to help where needed. When he arrived at Mr. Oliver’s house, he was met with the most captivating woman he’d ever seen. She was perfect. Wats was so smitten, he was afraid he’d screw up before he even had a chance to ask her out.

Marsden https://amzn.to/38Zq06Y
North https://amzn.to/3jln3TR
Watson https://amzn.to/3298RG1

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is booker-453x680-1.jpg

Charlie had been gone from the small town for several years, attending medical school with Rayne. She only returned when she got the news that her mother, the sitting judge, had been murdered. Rayne convinced her to come back home. The town needed good doctors.

Booker had just bought a huge, empty house. His cousins were going to a huge estate auction, and he figured he’d go to find some deals. His cousins were meeting their wives there. It would be fun.

Booker was having a wonderful time when he met Charlie. A spirited young woman who captured his heart from the moment they met. He couldn’t take his eyes off her.

Booker was caught up in Charlie’s enthusiasm as a first-time bidder until she got into an argument with another bidder, a bully who would win the bid even if he had to take it by force. Booker didn’t like bullies, especially a man who bullied women. Booker jumped to Charlie’s defense. That’s when things got dicey….

The Wilkerson Dynasty

Marsden https://amzn.to/38Zq06Y
North https://amzn.to/3jln3TR
Watson https://amzn.to/3298RG1
Booker https://amzn.to/3mMt9Al

 

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 4c99c-22188-images2b252812529.jpg

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag All Sizes are available also we have mousepads and bbq aprons too




https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is new-prizes.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ab532-winners.jpg

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
Liz Winslow Signed Tote Bag
Debbie Hudson Tea Totaler
Shirley Coursey Signed Coloring Book

Second Chance Winner
is
Julia Bystedt

Packages will be mailed on
July 5th 2022

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote
Courtney Kinder Signed Paperback
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Christina Flynn Tea Totaler
Kristin Peterson Signed Paperback
Teri Bellview Signed Paperback
Renee Johnson T-Shirt & Tote
Shirley Coursey T-Shirt & Tote
Heather Angalet Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak T-Shirt & Tote
Peggy Serour Tea Totaler

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

Happy Reading,

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is cropped-cropped-a929a-e812d-03kathisbartonlogotransparent.png

SECOND CHANCE DRAWING FOR A MYSTERY PRIZE !!!!!!!

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeY7nkIAHQCgnvBKbIjj6Sws3yR4e98oH-xU2NYb_UNRtqEUQ/viewform

Prologue


Pete loved it at this place. Dywyll. Welsh for Drink Darkly. Whoever named the place had done so with the décor in mind. It was dark, and there was only strong drink to be had. And that was what was going on with the five or so patrons when someone, a stranger, walked through the big double doors. Pete knew immediately that something had happened. Careful to keep an eye on him through the dirty mirror over the bar, Pete knew he was an American.

Not only that, but from the way he was dressed, she’d bet he was a man who had money to burn and didn’t give a flying fuck who knew it. When he approached Sammy, the manager and bartender, she watched both men as the newcomer struggled with his question. “Don’t hurt yourself. He speaks English too.” Nodding his thanks to her, Pete paid for her drink. Her heart was pounding hard now, and she wanted to get out of there. The man looked too much like someone she knew from her past. Then she realized what he’d said.

“Can you please repeat that?” “I’m looking for a man by the name of Pete Tolliver. Pete could be short for something else, but his grandfather has been hurt.” She told him she was Pete. “I thought you were. He’s doing much better. I’d say you’re difficult to find, but I believe that’s the point. He’s been asking for you.” “Doubtful. If you came here looking for Pete, then he didn’t send you. He calls me by my first name. What’s happened to him? Ben been knocking him around? If so, you give me an hour, and I’ll take care of him.” The man sat at the bar with her and pulled off his hat. “You’re a Wilkerson, aren’t you?”

“Yes. Shawn Wilkerson.” She only nodded. “Is there a reason you knew that? Or did someone tell you I was coming for you?” “Had I known you were coming, you wouldn’t have found me.” He only nodded and asked for a beer. “You’re the son of…let me think of her name. The one I have in my head isn’t nice.” “I’m sure I’ve called her worse. If it’s any help to you, they’re all dead. My mother included. Penelope was her name. She was killed by a bunch of prison guards while trying to escape.” Shawn drank down his beer and asked for another. When it was set before him, he asked her if she wanted another. Nodding, he ordered her one as well. “I’m set to be here for a week.

I had other business in this area, so I told my family I’d come to look for you. How did the bitches hurt you?” “Just like that, you believe me.” He nodded, and another beer was set before her too. “What’s happened? At home, I mean.” “Stanley is in the hospital but recovering well. He’s a good sort, isn’t he? Yes, it was Ben. He was pissed off because your grandda had the nerve to cash his check to pay his bills with it. Bastard. How is he related to you?” She told him. “I didn’t know he had any other children alive.”

“Ben’s dad died right after Ben was born. I’m not sure how, but I’m sure it was tragic. My mom was born as a late-in-life kind of kid. There is nearly nineteen years difference in their ages.” Shawn didn’t say anything when a full Welsh breakfast was put in front of her. Asking for a second-place setting, the two of them went to one of the many empty tables and sat down. “Have some. Let me see, my mom, Olivia, passed away when I was a baby. My biological sperm donor, Harlow, spent ten or so months in prison for beating up Ma.

However, she died before Harlow was freed. She was raped and murdered. Then your family stepped in, and not only was he their hit man, but I do also believe he knocked some of you kids around. I’m sorry if he did. But I wasn’t there, nor would I have been old enough to do anything about it.” “I haven’t seen Benton yet. He was in jail when I left. However, I’ve no doubt he was one part of the hitmen our mothers utilized. Is that why you’re here?” She told him she was working here and hiding out. Pete noticed that both of them avoided the cockles. Cocos in Welsh, they were like mussels found on beaches all over the world.

“I’m not telling you that you need to go home to see your grandda. Ben is going to be an issue, I’m sure. It’s up to you. However, as I said, I’m here for another week, so maybe we can hang out. You can show me the sights.” “I’m afraid you’re out of luck in this town for sights. Unless you’re into castles and lots of green grass and sheep. Which, thankfully, a lot of people are” He laughed, and she decided he had a good laugh. “Also, I have to work tomorrow. If I do go back, and that’s a big if, I’d need to go there and return here as soon as possible. I’m not much for living around a great many people, and I know your family is quite large. Also, you should understand something right now—I’m not easy. I’m not going to show you the sights by letting you into my bed.”

Shawn looked at her, shocked for all of three seconds before he threw back his head and laughed. Pete didn’t know why, but she had a feeling he didn’t do that often, let mirth take him so hard. Smiling at him, not really understanding what he might have found so funny, he kissed her on the cheek and stood up. “You’re leaving?” Shawn said he had to check into his hotel and tell his family he’d found her. “Don’t do that. Don’t tell them anything just yet. I don’t want to be pressured into going home. As much as I’d like to believe your family is nothing like your mother was, I’d just as soon not have to deal with them right now.” “I can understand that.

However, believe me, or not, we’re nothing like them. In fact, I’d say we’re more like my Aunt Holly. Did you know her?” She stood up so quickly the table jolted. “What is it?” “You said did I know her. She’s dead? Holly is dead?” Helping her to her seat, he sat too. Holding her hand, he told her the wives had had her killed a few months ago. She let the tears flow as he told her how she’d come to be gone. “She was…well, she was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. I’m staying in one of her homes, as a matter of fact.” Pete looked at him. “That’s why you’re here. To check up on her home and tell me I have to get out.” “No. I am here to check on the house, yes, but not to toss anyone out. As Mars wasn’t able to find out much about the place, he asked me if I’d come here to have a look around.

To see what the house looked like, as well as the person running the place. I’m to understand it’s a bed and breakfast, correct?” She said it was. “You send all the money via an account, then you’re paid monthly. He couldn’t understand why as well as it was doing, you weren’t getting more money than what you were paid.” “I’m paying Holly back for a loan. And I do live there rent-free. It’s why I was able to send money to my grandda every month. I don’t have much in the way of expenses. She’s really gone?” He nodded. “Right after my ma died, Holly came to see me. I think she was on duty. The doctor had only just pronounced Ma’s death, so I was pretty raw.

When she sat down next to me, taking my hand into hers just as you just did, I launched myself at her, holding on to her while my heart broke.” “That sounds like her.” Pete nodded, thinking about that day. “Go on, tell me how she was a part of your life. I’d love to hear it.” “My da was already out of the picture, so it had only been my ma and I. I was only a child, you see, but Holly talked to me like I was her equal. She not only offered me a job when I was old enough but lent me the money to not just pay for my ma’s funeral but to go to college as well. She made sure I didn’t have to work while I was seeking higher education. Nor did she ever once try and take advantage of my owing her so much money. When I finished with school, I came here and began working off the money I owed her while running the B&B.

I’m so sorry she’s gone. You’ve no idea how many times over the years I called her just to hear her voice and to talk to someone. She was the only friend I think I’ve ever had.” Shawn told her how sorry he was for her loss too. “Mars. I know him. And…let me think which one. Booker. I wasn’t Pete them, but Petunia Jackson. I was adopted by my grandda when my ma died, so I’d not have to be put in the system.” “We didn’t know it was a woman we were looking for. And you were right, your grandda didn’t send me. I don’t think he even mentioned you until we asked if there was anyone to notify. He said your name was Pete then, but no last name. Stanley said he’d contact you when he was home again.” Pete told Shawn that she went by Pete, so she was harder to find. “It worked. If not for an entry made on some of the notes Aunt Holly kept, we wouldn’t have known you were even here in Wales.”

“Holly told me I’d be safe here. And I am. However, I was never sure who I was safe from, as Ben never bothered with me. Not even after he found out I had a good job while finishing up high school.” He asked her if he’d known about her. “I think so. However, now that you mention it, I have no idea. I’d see him around, of course. Know he was my cousin, I suppose. But as far as him acknowledging me, I’m not sure. That’s a good point.

Perhaps Holly kept me safer by just keeping me out of his line of sight.” “More than likely. Are you all right now?” She nodded, then shook her head. “I can understand that too. I’ve known for a while that Aunt Holly is gone, and I still have trouble coming to terms with it. She was one of the best there was.” “She was. To a great many people, I’m thinking.” When Shawn tried to pay the bill, Sammy asked her, in Welsh, if he understood that she owned the bar. Shaking her head, she told Sammy she’d talk to him later, and she left.

Pete was just too raw to try and explain to anyone that she had her own money now, and she was beholden only to Holly, who had died. Shawn followed her out of the bar. “He said something along the lines of owning. Or it could have been owing. You own the bar.” “Yes. I own the bar, as well as a coffee shop down the road. I didn’t take any of the money from the B&B. I promise you that. Nor did I use any of the money and then put it back. I’ve been—” He laughed again. “I’m a bit touchy on things if you didn’t notice it. Money and owing someone is hard on me.” “I guess I can understand that. However, it never occurred to me that you were doing that. Nor that I would ever think you would.” She nodded and looked away. “How about we start over? I’m Shawn Wilkerson, nephew to Holly Wilkerson.

I’m here looking for you to give you some information that your grandda—whom I like, by the way—has been hurt.” “Thank you.” They shook hands, and she told him she needed to get back to the B&B. Shawn followed. “Really, I can get there from here. I’ve been doing it for some time now.” “It just so happens I’m staying there too. In another room.” She shook her head. “How about later, you and I have a nice dinner and talk about my aunt. Or anything, for that matter. I’d like to get to know you.” “I don’t know. I’m very caustic.”

He laughed, and she smiled at him. “All right. But I cook for the patrons at the B&B. It’s easier than trying to make a breakfast with all the trimmings. I usually have it for lunch, and that’s it. But since we shared, I’ll be able to eat at dinner time.” Whatever was going on, she wasn’t sure about it. However, she was going to call Mars and let him know what was going on. While she knew the other man, she wasn’t sure how much he knew about her. But Booker, she did know and would also call him. ~*~ Booker was still working on a couple of projects at home when his cell rang.

He knew the ringtone. It was Shawn. Since he’d heard from Shawn when he’d arrived three days ago that he’d made it, he knew whatever was going on now was something funny. Thinking of something to bust his chops about, he answered the phone with a nasty quip about his sexuality. Charlie had gone to bed about an hour ago. Booker took into account that Shawn might not have realized the time difference. Or perhaps he did. When he realized that Shawn hadn’t said anything back, he sat up straighter in his seat. “Shawn?” He heard voices. They weren’t speaking English, so he was at a loss as to what might be going on. Waiting for whoever called him using Shawn’s phone, he concentrated on breathing in and out instead of what might be going on with the phone call. “Booker Wilkerson?” He said it was him. “My name is Pete. I’m using your cousin’s phone to—” “Is he all right? Do I need to come there—?”

“Just let me tell you, damn it. You’ve no idea how freaked the fuck out I am right now.” He could hear her speaking to someone else. While he didn’t know what was being said, he figured that since Shawn had gone to Wales, they were speaking Welsh. “I’m going to be calm here. I’m having difficulty translating what I’m being told in one language, figuring it out in English to tell you, then reversing the process so I can tell the people here. Just fucking bear with me. I’m stressed the fuck out.” “All right. Can you tell me if he’s dead?” She said he wasn’t, but it had been touch and go for a bit. Then she said something in Welsh again. “Take your time, Pete. Just breathe. That’s what I’m trying to do right now.” “He wanted to go on a run.

Early morning here. There are a lot of lorries out that early, making deliveries and such.” He nodded, then told her to go on. “Hang on.” His heart was hurting, but he knew if he were to scream at the woman to get her to get on with the story, he might well not learn a damned thing. Reaching for his house phone, he called Charlie’s cell phone. Telling her to hurry down here, he could hear her racing down the stairs. Booker put his cell on speaker phone after telling her the little he knew. He also cautioned her to not hurry the woman along. “The doctor here wants to know if he has any allergies to medications.” He said he didn’t. He was, however, allergic to caffeine. “Bear with me. I’m so upset here, and I’ve not spoken English for some time.” Booker looked at Charlie when she cleared her throat.

“I can speak to you in Welsh if you’d like. If that would help. It’s been a while for me too, so let’s start out slowly.” The two of them spoke in Welsh, another thing about his lovely wife he’d not known until now. Smiling at her, he asked for Charlie’s cell and called Uncle Hank. “Booker? What’s happened? Where are you?” He told him all he knew so far. “She didn’t tell you what happened? Who does that? Tell her I want—?” “She’ll hang up. I don’t know that she will, Uncle Hank, but she’s pretty upset. Charlie is helping her now. I’m not sure what’s going on, but I thought you’d like to come here. I’m making the calls now.” He said he was on his way. “All right. Do you think we should call the others in?” “Not yet. They’ll just want answers we don’t have. Call them when we have more. Oh, I wish I had gone with him as he wanted.

I’m on my way, son.” Booker put the phone down when his uncle just hung up. Charlie turned to him. “She’s speaking with the staff about his things. Shawn was out running this morning, and a truck hit him. They don’t think it was on purpose, as the roads are very narrow in places, and Shawn might not have been off the road far enough when another truck was passing the one that hit him.” He asked if she knew how he was hurt. “He hit his head. That’s all they told her when they called her. Everyone apparently knew he was staying at the B&B she is running for Mars. Oh, she knows Mars too. You know her as well, apparently. She’s Petunia Jackson.” It took him a few moments to put a face to the name. When he remembered her, he could only think of her as a child. He also knew that at some time in her life, she had moved away. More than likely, when she’d been that same young woman he remembered.

Calling Mars because he’d been asked to, he told him the information as well as the little bit more he knew about Shawn. He and Abby were on their way over too. “He’s in surgery. His leg was broken in four places, and they’re setting it. Since she doesn’t know what they’re doing in there, she can’t tell me what sort of setting they’re doing. She’s stressed to the max, Booker. I think she might be blaming herself for this.” Booker asked if Pete had been with him when he was running. “Not that I’ve been made aware of. She’s running the B&B and doesn’t get out much this time of year, I guess.” “We’ll all end up there sooner rather than later, I’m betting.” Charlie went back to the call while he let his uncle and cousin in.

Mars had apparently called in the others as well, as they were coming to the house one at a time. Going into the kitchen, he wasn’t the least bit surprised to see that Herman had started the coffee and was making pancakes. He’d been in the kitchen for the past couple of days whenever he wanted to talk to him. “I still have some pull, so I called to see what is going on over there. So far, I’m only waiting on a call. I wasn’t snooping, but I could hear the doorbell ringing and figured something—hang on, that’s my contact now.” Sitting at one of the chairs around the big table, Booker pulled a pancake to him and rolled it around a piece of sausage. While waiting, he also poured him some juice. “All right. A young man was hit by a truck at five their time this morning.

So there is a five-hour difference—they’re ahead of us—so I’m thinking it happened sometime around midnight our time. Someone must have been with him to have him in the hospital very quickly if that is the case. He wasn’t just left there to die. What I mean is that he wasn’t left on the side of the road. That didn’t come out right either.” “I understood. The woman we’re talking to over there, she runs my cousin’s B&B. I know nothing about her, but I’m guessing she and Shawn were friends.” Herman simply shrugged. He was talking to someone on the second phone call he’d gotten. When he continued to nod, Booker got up and started pulling glasses from the cabinet. When the call was finished, Herman said he had good news. “Good. I could use it about now.

I’m sure everyone will be happy for it too.” “Shawn’s leg is busted up pretty badly. They’ve had to reinforce two bones with some steel rods. He’s going to be a long time in healing. The head wound wasn’t as bad as they had thought. Of course, he’ll have a major headache for some time to come, but he’ll be all right. Two of his fingers are broken, as well as his wrist. All on the left side.” He asked what was going to happen now. “They’ll keep him sedated for a few days, just to let the swelling go down. The young woman, Pete, is the granddaughter of Mr. Tolliver. He adopted her when she was just a young child. Monthly she sends him nearly her entire pay to keep him afloat. Also, she’s done well with investments too. She not only owns the bar but a coffee shop as well as a bun store. I had to ask. It’s just sweets.”

“We all thought she was a man.” Herman nodded as he put another round of batter on the griddle. “I’ll call the others in to get some food. You can tell them what you know, and we’ll go from there.” As everyone stood around eating pancakes and sausages, they talked about going to Wales to see Shawn. When Charlie joined them in the kitchen, having been speaking to Pete, she told them what she’d been able to find out. “The B&B is full until the end of the week, so we can’t stay there. Also, there aren’t any hotels or other accommodations within four hours of the hospital.

Pete suggested we wait until Friday before we travel there, and the place will be all ours. This time of the year, they close up for a month to have the carpets cleaned, as well as any upgrades that are needed.” Mars said he’d read that in some of the notes on the place. “She’s much calmer now. The doctor told her that Shawn would need to rest for the next few days, so they’ve put him into a medically induced coma. I agree with her on the fact that we can’t do anything until he wakes. She said she’d call us whenever there was any news, and she’d be using his phone, as she has no cellphone of her own. You might be interested to know that she and Shawn have been seeing the sites. I haven’t any idea what that might entail, but they have been hanging out together.”

“You think she’s his future wife?” Charlie smacked him on the arm. “I was only asking. I mean, it’s a long way to go to find someone to love, but—you don’t think she’ll make him live there with her, do you? Mars, you have to fire her or something. We can’t lose Shawn to another country. How will our kids get to know one another?” “Cool your jets, dumbass. You’ve already got them married with children. How about we just figure out how to get there and when, and we’ll work from there. As far as we know, she’s a royal…well, she is a royal bitch, but that’s all right too. We’ll not rush into anything for now.” Booker smiled at Charlie. “I haven’t any idea what you might be thinking, but it’s not going to bode well for you if I have to smack you around a little in front of your family. Behave.” “But it’s so much more fun to not behave.” She smacked him again, harder this time, and he pulled her into his arms for a much-needed kiss.

“We will need to make arrangements to get there. Not only will we need to have passports, but time off from work for this. I can do my work anywhere, but I know a lot of us can’t.” The rest of the morning was spent talking about the trip, what they’d need to be taking, and calling bosses or whatever they had to take care of while they’d be gone. Wats told them with an injury like Shawn’s sounded, it might be a month before he’d be up from the bed. That was when Mars decided he’d charter a plane, take them there, and bring Shawn home when they could. It was a plan everyone agreed would work better. Then Herman cleared his throat.

“Two things you must remember. You’ll need to have cash, as credit cards might be all right, but this is a smallish town, and they might have poor Internet. The second thing is, not only will you need passports, but you might also need to have some proof of Shawn being related to any of you. Hank, I would suggest that you take everything you have concerning his birth records. As well as taking a death certificate of your wife. Just to make things go smoother. Also, I just remembered this, you’ll need an attorney in the States in the event you need something else.

An attorney can make things move faster. Having one ready to go, with knowledge of where and why you’re going, will save time as well.” North was making notes and asking questions about some things he had questions about. The rest of them, even for as many attorneys that were in the family, just waited to see if they needed to do anything too. “I just realized that you have three qualified physicians in the family. Medical certification should be handy if needed. Also, this is very important, don’t step on toes. I know you won’t mean to, but it’ll do better for young Shawn if he’s not the center of a national debate on US doctors versus any in Wales.”

“I agree on that one,” Wats told them how he’d been in another state and had offered his help at a very busy hospital following a traffic pile-up. “They were nasty, so much so that they called security on me. I learned a very valuable lesson in that.” By the time everyone was headed back to their homes, they’d made some real headway in getting things ready to go. Hank was going to leave this afternoon to be with his son while the rest of them waited until they could have accommodations. As it was now, there was very little they could do but watch Shawn sleep, and that would drive them all nuts, Booker thought. As he was headed up to bed to take a shower, Booker realized he’d been up for too long for him not to take a nap. Just lying on the bed, hoping for at least an hour of rest, he thought of Shawn being so far away.

Of all his cousins, he and Shawn were the closest to each other. He thought it had a lot to do with the order of their birth. They were only about two months apart, while the others were as much as six months. Almost as soon as his head touched the pillow, his body began to shut down. He knew, in that moment, that this wasn’t going to be a nap, but he’d sleep for at least several hours. ~*~ Pete was exhausted. She also thought if she had to eat one more plate of hospital food, she’d just give up eating altogether.

When Mr. Wilkerson came in with what smelled to her like heaven, it was all she could do not to knock him to the floor and eat whatever was in the bags he’d brought in. “I thought you’d enjoy a treat. I know I would.” He started laying out the covered plates of food. “Sammy, the man at the bar you frequent, said you usually only eat at the place once a day, but when you can eat there more often, it’s his famous fish and chips.” “It’s the best there is. How much do I owe you, Mr. Wilkerson?” When he didn’t move, his hand about halfway to her, she looked up at him. “What have I done?

Whatever it is, I’m sorry. I’d do anything for the food.” “Then call me Hank.” She said she couldn’t do that. “Sure you can. It’s a one-syllable word. Try it. Hank. It’s a completely common name. Something that my wife, when she was around, tried to get me to change often enough. Anyway, I’d very much like for you to call me Hank. Please?” “Mr.— Hank, you’re only here for the short time it’s going to take to get your son home. I know that. You don’t really have to be nice to me. I like Shawn, but again, he was only here to tell me about my grandda, then he was leaving.”

Hank asked her how sure she was about that. “What do you mean?” “Honey, I’ve seen the way you look at him. I hear you crying when you think no one is around. You’re in love with him. It’s as plain as the nose on your face.” She said that wasn’t possible, as she’d only known him a few days before he’d gotten hurt. “With my nephews, that’s all it took for them to fall in love with their wives. My goodness, Mars and Abby knew each other less than any of them before Mars asked her to marry him. Now there is a good young man. I sometimes think how much I missed of his life too.” He’d told her about his sister being murdered. How the wives of him and his brothers had conspired to not just have her raped, then murdered, but they had pitted them all, including their father, against her. She thought they were about the most fucked up family she’d ever encountered. But she did like Hank.

When he’d arrived two days ago, she had picked him up at the airport to take him to the hospital. The first thing he asked her was if she was all right. Nodding, as her emotions had gotten the better of her, he hugged her tightly and cried with her. Since then, he’d been staying in her room while she bunked in the apartment over the bar. She liked it there better anyway, as there were not that many people around. The doctor came into the room with them then and told them he was grateful for the extra food for the staff too. She’d not known he’d done that, but he included her in saying they’d both decided they worked too hard and deserved a treat as well. Translating for Hank was getting easier all the time. But she did appreciate it when the doctor spoke English for him. “Shawn is mending well. The pins in his leg to keep it stable aren’t causing any damage to his skin.

At times we do run into a little bit of trouble with infection getting into the wounds, but that isn’t a problem thus far.” Hank asked about his other wounds. “We did an X-ray of his head again last night. There isn’t any swelling, nor do we foresee any future trouble with that. He’ll have a headache when he wakes, but nothing more that a couple of ibuprofen won’t take care of.” “Will he be able to walk again? It looks frightening with all this going on with his leg.” Pete was embarrassed for asking such a cruel question, but Hank said he’d like to know that as well. The staff had long since given up on getting her out of the room when they talked about Shawn with Hank. He had insisted, and she stayed. “I mean, I don’t know him all that well, but he seems to be a very active person.”

“He is. Shawn has been a runner for a long time. I say that because I’ve noticed he goes out several times a day. He told me it was to clear his mind. I can see that.” She smiled at Hank. “I’m sorry. What else do we need to know about my son?” “I’m going to start lowering his medication to have him waking soon. He’ll be in and out of consciousness, but that’s to be expected. Also, you shouldn’t expect him to remember what happened right away. Don’t force his memories. Just let them come to him a little at a time.” Hank said they’d do that and reached for her hand to hold. “Once he’s awake fully, in a few more days, we’ll do more tests on him and see where we stand about his walking.

I know he will be able to, but I don’t want to make any promises right now on how active he’ll be once we remove the pins.” After the doctor left, Hank left her to call the family. There wasn’t much in the way of service for cell phones in Shawn’s room, so she just stared at the man she’d come to love. Not that she’d admit that to anyone but herself, but she wanted so desperately for him to wake up. Like she did whenever they were alone, she spoke to him. “Your father is very nice. He’s trying very hard not to be too worried about you, but I think he’ll be all right.” She took his hand into hers and was glad to feel warmth in it. “You do know I’m going to beat you senseless when you wake up.

I might wait a couple of days to do it, but I did tell you, several times, to be extra careful at crossings. You shouldn’t have been on that stupid bridge.” Standing up, she went to the window and looked out over the beautiful landscaping. It would be easier to talk to him this way. Even though she knew he couldn’t hear her, she still wanted to tell him things she wasn’t sure would make him happy with her. “I don’t just run the B&B for your cousin. Nor do I only own the bar and coffee shop. There are several pieces of property I own that I rent to farmers. I can do this because I have a job. One that I work at from wherever I’m putting my hat at any given moment.”

She drew in a deep breath and let it out slowly. “You see, I write. Books. Of course. That was stupid. I write books that are racy. Well, I think they’re more than racy, but that’s just me. Anyway, I have been writing since I was in high school. Just playing around. Then I submitted one of my stories to one of the smaller publishing houses for fun. It wasn’t two days later that I was called by the person in charge, the owner, and she asked me if I had any more stories. I never call them books. To me, it sounds like I’m being pretentious. She and I hit it off really well, and I’ve been doing it since then. I don’t want you to think badly of me—” “Why do you think he’d think badly of you?” She turned so quickly that she nearly fell over. “Be careful there, child. You don’t want to be laid up too, now do you? But answer my question.

Why do you think Shawn, or anyone for that matter, would think badly of you for using a talent to make money?” “They’re dirty books.” Hank laughed. “I don’t think it’s funny. What do you think his friends or his family is going to say when they find out I’m nothing more than an author that writes books for a living?” “I think they’ll tell you they want a copy of them. Are there a great many of them?” Pete told him how many she had published at last count. “Oh my. Yes, oh my indeed. That’s quite a few of them, honey. Good for you. They’ll be so happy to know that. Especially the women of the family. I know for a fact that Abby reads—I believe she calls them bodice rippers. I’m assuming you don’t write under Pete Tolliver.” “No. Just my first name. No last. It makes things easier for me.” He laughed and went to his phone. When he found whatever it was he was looking for, he handed it to her. “Which one of your—? She has my book.”

The woman in the picture was asleep on a couch. On her lap was one of Pete’s earlier books. Right there on the cover was her name in script, Petunia. Handing him back his phone, she didn’t know what to say to him now. “I’d say they’re going to be— Pete, look at Shawn.” She did. He was staring at her with wide eyes. Not moving, she was glad when Hank went to his son, saying his name. As soon as Shawn turned to his dad, Pete felt as if she’d run a marathon. Twice over. There were monitors all over his body. Also, a feeding tube in his nose. Since he’d been out for so long, they wanted to make sure he was getting enough nutrients. Going out into the hallway to tell the nurses, it took her several deep breaths for her to get her shit together. Pete went in behind the nurses. The doctor had been called in as well, they told them. When she moved back out of the way, Shawn put out his hand, and she took it.

The connection, or whatever it was, made her feel like she’d been given a new outlook on life. A steady stream of tears blurred her vision, but she was so very happy to see him awake. They worked with him for about twenty minutes before they left him again. The nurses did tell Shawn not to fight the rest he needed. When he closed his eyes, she started to pull her hand free, and he tightened his grip. She sat that way with him while Hank went out to call his family again. “You scared us.” Opening his eyes again, he winked at her. “Go to sleep before I have to knock you out. But know this—if you ever come to visit again, you’re not going to go running in the middle of the night.” “Daytime.” She pointed out that it was still dark when he’d gone out. “Am I all right now?” “I’m not a doctor, dummy.” He smiled with his eyes closed again. “You’re going to be just fine. Your leg is busted up pretty good, but I can’t see you letting that get you down much. You’re supposed to be sleeping, not having me tell you stuff you can find out from your dad.” “He’d lie to me.” She figured she should have, too, instead of telling him she was going to knock him around. “Thought of you when the truck hit me. Thought of you being pissy.”

When she was sure he was asleep, she laid her head on his hand holding hers. She’d been so stressed for the last couple of days she’d not really been sleeping all that well. Just thinking she’d close her eyes for a moment, Pete yawned once more and let her body relax enough to take her under. Waking up when someone touched her, she had to take a couple of moments to remember where she was. Hank asked her if she felt better, and with a glance at Shawn, who was still sleeping, she told him she was all right. “You’ve been asleep for nearly five hours like that. I was sure you’d be hurt when you woke up. Must be your youth that keeps you from cramping up like I think I would.” She asked him if she’d really been asleep for that long. “Yes. The only reason I woke you now was because they’re going to take Shawn down for a couple of more X-rays of his arm and hand. I can only think you needed it.” “I guess I did.”

Standing up, she was stretching when the orderly came to get Shawn. “Do you know how long this will take?” “No, ma’am. There are a couple of people ahead of your husband, but it won’t be that long.” She started to explain she wasn’t Shawn’s wife, but after a glance at Hank and him shaking his head, she let it go. “If you’ve got a cell phone, I could give you a call if you’d like to go out. It’s a lovely night tonight. Might get some of the cobwebs out of your head for a bit.” After agreeing that would be wonderful, Hank gave the young man his cell number. Going down in the elevator, she did feel better, she realized, and was so happy to be outside on the really nice night. Taking in a deep breath, she closed her eyes and let all her stress just wash off her. “The family will be here tomorrow. I noticed that the patrons at the B&B have left today too. Will you move back to the house?” She told him that with his family coming, they’d be packed up. “I suppose. But I hate that we’re putting you out of your home.

You have more right to it than we do.” “It’s not my home. It’s Mars’s, and I guess now Abby’s. But I’m all right over the bar. Sammy feeds me and makes sure I’m not bothered. There isn’t a phone up there, but I’m all right with that as well. It’s very quiet.” She smiled at him. “I’ll be by to make dinner for everyone if they want. I’ve become quite the Welsh cook over the years.” Pete wasn’t keen on seeing the rest of the family. Not that she was going to have much choice in the matter, but she really wished they’d just allow Hank to take care of getting his son home. He was, like his son, a very nice person. She wished they’d met under entirely different circumstances. But then, without Shawn being hurt, they might well have never met at all. “There’s our signal.” She was happy to be going back in.

They’d have a little more information from someone, and that was good. As they were seated, Shawn came into the room, bed and all, and she could tell he was in a great deal of pain. “He’s a bit on the stubborn side, mistress.” She asked what had happened. “He thought he could lift himself up and onto the table when he’s not strong enough just yet. I’ve asked the nurse for something for his pain.” She told Hank what the young orderly had told her. He’d been so nervous, she supposed, that he had slipped into speaking his own language. Pete glared at Shawn while the drugs from the nurse hit his system, and he began to relax. “What do I have to do? Go with you everywhere, so you behave? Didn’t I tell you to be careful?” He smiled, but she was on a roll. “I’m not going to stand for you making your father upset again, do you understand me?” He looked at his dad, then back at her. “I have no idea what you just said but for a couple of words. You’re upset. I get that. However, if it’s about me moving myself, you should have seen the little bitty thing that was trying to lift me up to put me near the machine. And she was several months pregnant.” She told him that was what she was upset about.

“I’m sorry I upset you too. That’s the last thing I wanted to do. But I can’t allow someone smaller and very pregnant to lift me when I can move myself.” “And how did that work out for you? You hurt yourself by being all macho.” He threw back his head and laughed. She had to join him. It was just too infectious for her not to. Even Hank joined the two of them.

Trenton Marshall’s Shadow Release Blitz And Giveaway

Trenton was the last of the brothers to find a mate. He saw his brothers’ happiness and wanted to experience that for himself.

Libby had moved in with her aunt to help her out. And when a crazy neighbor was plotting to poison their water to make them sell their property to her, the Marshalls stepped in to help.

From the moment Trenton figured out Libby was his mate, she suddenly possessed a great deal of magic. With the little people popping in and out and the house constantly changing, Libby thought she was on the brink of losing her sanity….

AMAZON USA https://amzn.to/3b0UBqy
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/39FkNqA
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/3QxClp5
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/trenton-kathi-s-barton/1141673872?ean=2940186348368
GOOGLE PLAY https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kathi_S_Barton_Trenton?id=jg12EAAAQBAJ
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/trenton-3
SMASHWORDS https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1152398
ITUNES https://books.apple.com/us/book/trenton/id6443003250
PAPERBACK https://amzn.to/3n0ENXR

Harrison Parker had no family and no ties. She was invisible to be traced. Her job with the government was top secret. So secret that she only reported to two people. Now, she was the target and she had to figure out who wanted her dead. Hurt, and laying low, she reached out to the only man she trusted, an old man she had befriended in the cemetery, Sheppard Marshall.

Sheppard Marshall had been grieving the loss of his Millie for the last fifteen years. He would sit by her grave every day. He was an old man of ninety, and he looked forward to the visits he received from the sassy woman, Harrison Parker. Over time he had grown very fond of her, and when he received the message that she needed his help, Sheppard would help her or die trying.

His grandson, Sheppard or Shep, wasn’t letting the old man go alone. If he got hurt, Shep wouldn’t be able to live with himself. Even though the Marshall men were jaguars, that didn’t mean the old man couldn’t get into a situation that got him hurt or possibly killed.

The bullet had gone clear through, but the poison it had been laced with left Harrison with a high fever and near death. Shep didn’t know what this woman was into, but he knew two things—she was dangerous, and she was his mate. What kind of mess had the old man gotten him into now?

Isabella Booth was tired of all the sexist crap handed to her on a daily basis.  When her father wouldn’t even consider her as an heir to his lawn care business because she wasn’t a man, and left it to her brother Hunter instead, she had done the next logical thing. She opened her own lawn care business, and it thrived.

Dean Marshall was renovating his family home. As far as the landscaping was concerned, he was told to go big or go home. When Shep invited the owner of the landscaping company to his home for dinner, Dean wanted to be there to see about getting some things done for his place. He didn’t mean for his jaguar to knock the woman to the ground.

Bella was thoroughly pissed when the big cat ruined her jeans and favorite shoes, and when he announced that they were mates, Bella was seeing red. No way, no how, was she having another sexist, overbearing man in her life. Not if she could help it….

Lachlan Russell had been rushed into emergency surgery. Her boss’s daughter took exception to Lach, telling her no, and went ballistic, throwing anything and everything she could at Lach until Lach finally collapsed from her injuries. Lach was also pregnant at the time, tricked into being a surrogate to carry her sister’s child.

Harris Marshall, Shep’s wife, was called in on the case. Lach’s boss and daughter were now both in jail, but Lach’s family was another matter—they were worse. Harris would make sure this woman pulled through if she had to kill Lach’s family to see to it. Calling in reinforcements, her brother-in-law, Oakley, was the first to arrive at the hospital.

Oakley was thrilled to have found his mate. As far as he was concerned, Lach was perfect. But her sister and brother-in-law were both insane. Would he and his family be enough to protect her from their madness?

Rebel had been called to the US when she’d been informed that her brother was dying, but she arrived too late. He left behind a devastated wife, two small children, and a load of debt. Rebel stayed to help out as best she could, taking a job at the local hospital, but working conditions there were unbearable, and she had no choice but to quit or kill someone—namely the head nurse. And as a doctor, she had taken an oath to save lives, not take them.

Rodney ran a small practice. He handled the medical care for the local schools and worked at the hospital when needed for emergencies. And when a little boy came into his office to get stitched up from being ambushed by bullies, Rodney knew he had to get to the bottom of the problem. When the boy’s Aunt Rebel shows up and takes over, Rodney instantly knows who she is to him—his mate. Having to approach her with the subject had his cat curling up inside him. He had watched his brothers flounder around with their new mates, and he didn’t want to start off on the wrong foot.

It didn’t take but a minute for Rebel to assess the new situation, and she wasn’t sure how she felt about it. She also needed a job, not a handout. She was a doctor, damn it, and a good one. No man, especially one she didn’t know, was going to order her around. If he thought he could, she’d let him know fast that she was no pushover.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 70241-synopsis.jpg

 
 
Paige Avery had been deep, undercover with her brother, James. Their target had been spotted, but something went wrong. The bullets came from everywhere, killing most of the people in the room. Sent to retrieve them, Rebel Marshall popped in and took the unconscious Page and James back to her home to recover. If Paige and James hadn’t already been immortal, they would have died for sure. As it was, Paige was too weak to shift, and until she could, it would be a long recovery.
Heath found James in the barn. The man seemed friendly enough, but Heath didn’t trust strangers easily. Heath was ready to go about his business when he smelled the boy. The boy was hurt and hiding it well, that is until he crumpled from the pain. Heath called for Rodney, and they got the boy back to the house.
Paige shouldn’t have been out of bed, but her concern for her nephew had her moving slowly. Told to sit in a chair before she hurt herself further, Paige caught Heath’s scent and realized he was her mate, and a string of curses flew out of her mouth in seven different languages.
 
 
 

Marshall’s Shadow
1. Sheppard http://amzn.to/2IgAcvw
2. Dean https://amzn.to/2H88RM4
3. Oakley https://amzn.to/3i0qNci
4. Rodney https://amzn.to/2Pgepf9
5. Heath  https://amzn.to/3lPlq45
6. Trenton https://amzn.to/3b0UBqy

                     ADD IT TO YOUR BOOK LIST TODAY 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/61318039-trenton?from_search=true&from_srp=true&qid=LGO2EYQ58R&rank=1
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 4c99c-22188-images2b252812529.jpg

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Signed Coloring Book,
Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag All Sizes are
available also we have mousepads and bbq aprons too


https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is new-prizes.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ab532-winners.jpg

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
 Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Renee Johnson T-Shirt & Tote
Robin Brockett Tea Totaler

Packages will be mailed out this
week…

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote
Courtney Kinder Signed Paperback
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Christina Flynn Tea Totaler
Kristin Peterson Signed Paperback
Teri Bellview Signed Paperback
Renee Johnson T-Shirt & Tote
Shirley Coursey T-Shirt & Tote
Heather Angalet Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak T-Shirt & Tote
Peggy Serour Tea Totaler

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

Happy Reading,

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is cropped-cropped-a929a-e812d-03kathisbartonlogotransparent.png

SECOND CHANCE DRAWING FOR A MYSTERY PRIZE !!!!!!!

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeY7nkIAHQCgnvBKbIjj6Sws3yR4e98oH-xU2NYb_UNRtqEUQ/viewform

Prologue


Trenton wasn’t sure what he was going to do with such a large house, but he decided bigger was better in this family. Laughing to himself, he walked around the kitchen once more to try and figure out what he could dick around on the price. As he was thinking of making an offer, Harris contacted him. Don’t make an offer on it. I’d not even want the place after the things I’ve found out about it. He asked her what she’d found. Two things I’ve been able to find out about the house is that it has about ten grand of unpaid taxes on it. They’re going to try and make you be responsible for them. Also, the house, as you know, has been on the market for a while.

I just found out the reason for it. Apparently, at one time, there were about seventy bodies buried all over the land, and they believe some are still there. At some point—and I’d more than likely think the real estate office knows this—the government will go in and seize the house and lands to look around again. Perhaps even going so far as tearing the house down to look under the foundation. Aren’t they suppose to tell you that? She said they might hint at it, but she doubted they’d be that forthcoming. I see. So I’m walking away from it. I might take you up on the offer to having my house finished that I’ve been working on. At least it would be something I know all about. It’s been worked on now.

I knew as soon as I figured out the hidden things of the one you’re in now that you’d say that. And I agree. It’s better to know what you’re getting into rather than lose it all over some problems that come around all of a sudden. He thanked her. When you meet your mate, Trenton, things are going to go much smoother. I know that things have been for me and the rest of the family. Even your brothers are much calmer than they were before, I’ve been told. I’m hoping that’s the way things work out for me. I could use a little calmness in my life for a change. Not that I think I’ll have it when I meet her, but you never know. Besides, everyone has children or is going to have them, and I’m not going to take the chance of not having someplace for them all to live when they get here.

I’m not saying it will happen, but I’m more of a be prepared sort of person. She laughed with him. To be honest, I’m excited about having a mate. Someone to be able to share a life with. It is a wonderful feeling. He told the realtor that he didn’t want the house and left her standing there, trying to convince him that this was the perfect house for him. Trenton got into his car and left her standing there begging him, really begging him, to purchase it at a lower price. All right. I’ll let you get back to being the only bachelor in the family. Instead of going back to his home to see what was going on, Trenton made his way to the schoolhouse that was going up. It was a huge project they were all doing, and he was happy there would be a place for the kids to have a safe environment. After having a look around there, he made his way to the old schoolhouse to see how the renovations were going there.

The classrooms were being fitted with a bathroom and shower. There would be two women per room unless they had other children. Then the family would share the room. He also liked that they were putting a kitchen in the rooms. While only a refrigerator and a microwave, it was going to be nice for a person to have a small snack or two when they wished it. “Hello, Mr. Marshall. Have you come by to see what we’re doing?” He told Mr. Kyle that he was just being nosy. “Not a bad thing. Come on, let me show you what we’ve done with the kitchen and dining areas. I think your grandda had a good idea when he suggested the few things we’ve done. Makes it seem less sterile if you ask me.” He was happy too. Instead of having long tables, as had been in the room for eating, there were small tables scattered all around the room. He could see them with tablecloths on them.

A nice little candle. It was almost romantic, Trenton thought. There were larger tables, Kyle told him. Mostly, he’d bet, for a family. Even as he was being shown the kitchen area, Trenton knew his grandda had had a hand in designing this space as well. “He said there should be a couple of open fridges for the people coming in late. The kitchen will be open for the three meals, of course. This way, anyone can come in and get them something to eat without having to go out.” There were large places for drinks and such as well, he was told. “That there wall will have windows that show a garden. Anyone that wants to work in them—I’m told it’s a nice stress reliever—can do that too. That grandda of yours, he sure is a smart fella. I hope you guys know that.” “I did know that, but I think we still underestimate him a little. I love all these ideas.” There were others too. Things that would make the place look less and less like a refuge and give it more of a homey setting.

“I think this will be a good safe place for women in trouble, don’t you think?” “Yes, sir. I do. I knew this girl once—that’s all she was too, a child. She got herself in a family way, and her parents kicked her to the side of the road. No help from them, nothing to do with her. About six months into her being in that delicate condition, someone killed her while she was living in a box under the bridge. A car did it—came right up on the curb and ran her over. Killed them both. You know what? Those parents of hers, they didn’t even show up at the funeral. Said she’d made her bed.” Trenton asked if they’d done it.

“Not really, but they might as well have with them tossing her out. Poor thing. If she’d had a place like this, both of them would be all right today. Sad world we live in if you ask me.” He agreed with him. As they toured the rest of the place, he was shown what the plans were for the outbuildings. There were three of them—not huge, but big enough to use as a classroom, a skills-building, and a place to do laundry and such. There was also going to be a heavy-duty fence around the entire compound that would keep most anyone out. Those that made it over the fence would meet up with the pack that would be roaming the lands both night and day. Trenton made his way back to his place just as he realized he was getting hungry. Stopping by the deli, he got him a thick sub, as well as a cold drink. Sitting out in the unusually warm day, he was enjoying the day a great deal better than he thought he might have when he woke up this morning.

He’d had some terrible dreams. Few of his family knew he’d suffered from night terrors for his entire life. None of them, during the day, were anything he thought should have bothered him. But at night, he’d wake up with a scream coming out of his mouth and his entire body drenched in sweat. Trenton wondered what a mate would think about that. Heath joined him at the table he was sitting at with his own sandwich and drink. “I thought I saw you. I was going to take this home to eat, but if you don’t mind, I’ll stick it out with you.” Trenton told him he was already joining him. They both laughed. “I’ve two games finished up. The one I was working on for dementia patients is ready for testing, and the other, a children’s game to help with counting money, is going on the market soon.

If I don’t have another buyer wanting first dibs. The sucker has only just been finished, and I have people fighting over it.” “Well, that’s not a bad thing, is it?” They talked about everything, but not really anything at all. He did tell him of the ideas that Grandda had on the building they were working on and how much he loved them. “Also, my house is being finished up. Might as well be prepared, don’t you think?” “Yes. I’d say so.” They were finished eating, and he asked him where Paige was. “She’s working on something for Harris. I stay out of those conversations as much as I can. They’re not at all nice to each other, and I don’t want to get in the middle of anything. I think Shep does the same thing when they’re together.

I noticed he wasn’t home either when I dropped Paige off.” “They are a little intense.” Boy, was that an understatement. “I was thinking about the holidays last night. This will be our first without Mom. I don’t know how to feel about it. I think I’m going to miss her ten times as much. She loved the holidays so much.” “She did. But I have a feeling she’s going to be right there with us.” Trenton nodded, too emotional to speak. “I love you, Trenton. Very much. I think I need to say that to all of you more often.” He agreed, and when they stood up to go their separate ways, they hugged tightly and for a long time. Trenton needed that. More than he’d come to realize, he needed to feel arms around him. He, too, was going to do it more often. Yes, he thought, he was going to hug more often, even if it was just a quick one.

Bailey Morgan’s Leap Release Blitz&Giveaway

Bailey Golden and his five brothers were the first of their kind. Born leopards, they were blessed with the magic of being the first leopard shifters. Morgan, their mother by proxy, raised them to blend in with humans and to be good men. Blessed with immortality, they all lived together on Morgan’s Leap, a sanctuary for all nature.

Zippy and her sister, Venita, were born witches. Veni, Leslie’s mate, was the grand witch, but Zippy was no slouch when it came to magic. Zippy and their parents came to Morgan’s Leap because they had discovered that Veni was alive, not dead as they’d been led to believe, and they wanted her back in their lives. Although Zippy was thankful to have her sister back in her life, discovering she had a mate was both a shock and a blessing.

Bailey was surprised but not at all unhappy when Zippy appeared in his life. Everything around him was changing so fast. And when Zippy didn’t hesitate to take in the three abandoned infants from the hospital, his heart couldn’t have been fuller….

AMAZON USA https://amzn.to/3GR9gk6
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/394rBxM
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/3thpMUP
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/bailey-kathi-s-barton/1141620981?ean=2940186707264
GOOGLE PLAY https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kathi_S_Barton_Bailey?id=6E1zEAAAQBAJ
SMASHWORDS https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1150433
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/bailey-7
ITUNES https://books.apple.com/us/book/bailey/id6442936909
PAPERBACK https://amzn.to/3av7Dwv

ADD it to your book list today

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/61225525-bailey

Carroll Golden and his five brothers were the first of their kind. Born leopards, they were blessed with the magic of being the first leopard shifters. Morgan, their mother by proxy, raised them to blend in with humans and to be good men. Blessed with immortality, they all lived together on Morgan’s Leap, a sanctuary for all nature.

Hanna March worked for the FDA. She had always wanted to visit Morgan’s Leap, but it was closed to the public, so when she was given the opportunity to inspect their orchard on some bogus complaint, she jumped at the chance. The place was beyond anything she ever expected, and Morgan was the perfect host. But when someone took a pot shot at Morgan from the field, a huge leopard came out of nowhere and took them both down. Hanna, hitting her head on the way to the ground, was down for the count.

Carroll shifted back to human as soon as the women were out of danger, but finding out the pretty FDA agent was his mate took Carroll by surprise, and boy was she going to be mad when she woke up.

Leslie Golden and his five brothers were the first of their kind. Born leopards, they were blessed with the magic of being the first leopard shifters. Morgan, their mother by proxy, raised them to blend in with humans and to be good men. Blessed with immortality, they all lived together on Morgan’s Leap, a sanctuary for all nature.

Venetia had been thrown from a vehicle and left for dead at the edge of the Golden’s property. When found by the Goldens, she couldn’t remember what had happened to her.

It didn’t take long for Leslie to realize who Venita was to him. Everything was happening so fast to him and all his brothers. Now, a car crash at the edge of their property left them with three kids to raise. Then it hit him all at once. He had a mate, and he was a father… What else would be in store for his new family?

Carroll https://www.amazon.com/Carroll-Morgans-Leopards-Shapeshifter-Romance-ebook/dp/B08Y7VVLJL/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=carroll+by+kathi+s+barton&qid=1633184717&sr=8-1

Leslie https://amzn.to/3l0ZJO0

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 4c99c-22188-images2b252812529.jpg

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Signed Coloring Book,
Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag All Sizes are
available also we have mousepads and bbq aprons too


https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is new-prizes.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ab532-winners.jpg

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
Heather Angalet Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak T-Shirt & Tote
Peggy Serour Tea Totaler

Packages will be mailed out this
week…

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote
Courtney Kinder Signed Paperback
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Christina Flynn Tea Totaler
Kristin Peterson Signed Paperback
Teri Bellview Signed Paperback
Renee Johnson T-Shirt & Tote
Shirley Coursey T-Shirt & Tote
Heather Angalet Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak T-Shirt & Tote
Peggy Serour Tea Totaler

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

Happy Reading,

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is cropped-cropped-a929a-e812d-03kathisbartonlogotransparent.png

Prologue


Morgan made herself into a tight ball as she hid in the tall grasses in the field. She knew the men chasing her would find her soon enough. But for now, she was going to make them work for it. Closing her eyes, trying her best to calm her breathing, she did the only thing she knew to do to not think about what was going on around her. Morgan counted to fifty in all the languages she knew. She had awakened out here. All she remembered was having dinner in the kitchen with the staff and then waking out in the middle of the moonless night. She didn’t remember going to bed.

Not putting on her nightgown she had on now. Nor did she remember waking when brought out here in the cool night. Soon after waking, she heard the voices of the men, six she thought she’d counted, saying the first one that found her could have her. At fourteen, Morgan knew exactly what that meant. They were going to rape her. Then more than likely kill her. Her parents would be looking for her. She would admit, only to herself, that they’d not be too upset about her being gone. Morgan had a habit of getting up in the middle of the night to see to one creature or another.

So it might be days before anyone— The hot breath of air on her forehead had her whimper just a little. Lifting her head without opening her eyes, she felt it once again. It was hot but not sour-smelling. Opening her eyes, she looked right into the golden eyes of a leopard. Their noses touched—that was how close she was to her. The lick to her face scared her. While she’d seen the wild animals around the compound where she lived, she’d never been this close to one so dangerous. The farmers would kill them when they took down a cow or something they raised, but no one could have prepared her for the beauty of them this close.

The big cat put her paw on her head and pushed it back down, so it rested on the dirt. When she started to lift it again, the cat pushed her down again. Understanding that she was to stay where she was, Morgan closed her eyes. If she was going to be eaten, she was glad the cat was sparing her from knowing when it was coming. The sound, soft as a coin dropping onto the dusty ground, was all she heard before the large cat screamed. There was gunfire too. Something frighteningly close stirred up some of the dirt she was hiding on. The screaming of men was next. It wasn’t long before it was all cut off, and she knew on some level that the cat had killed the men.

The paw to her head again had her lifting it up to see if she was next. The cat had been hurt. Blood was pouring from her shoulder at an alarming rate. Sitting up, unmindful of whether it was safe to do so, Morgan tore at her nightgown to staunch the blood as she spoke to the leopard. “I think you saved me.” The cat just let her poke around at her wound, soon lying down when she asked her to do so. “The bullet needs to come out. If it doesn’t, I’m afraid you’ll get sick and die from it. I wish I had my knife here. But I think I can see it enough to get it out with my fingers. I won’t do any more than I have to. All right?”

Morgan worked for fifteen minutes in getting the bullet out. The cat never hurt her. Never tried to get away from her as she worked. Sweat poured off her forehead as she finally got it free. When she was finished, she showed it to the cat. “See? Someone got a shot in. I promise you, I’ll make sure you’re all right. Do you have a lair? Someplace you can rest?” The cat stood up, and that was when Morgan noticed she’d had kittens recently. “Oh no. Where are they? You left your den to come to save me? Come on. I’ll help you back.” It wasn’t far, about a hundred yards from where the cat had come to her. It occurred to her that the cat was more than likely saving her kittens from being found when she killed the men, but Morgan was ever so grateful that she’d spared her as well.

Helping the cat into the den, she saw that she had three of the pudgiest little kittens she’d ever seen. “They’re beautiful. Oh, look at them. You are a good momma, Golden Eyes. They’re very fat. I’ll stay with you until you need to eat again. Then I’ll hunt for you.” The cat didn’t seem to mind when Morgan picked one of them up, so she touched each of them in turn. “You’re very lucky those men didn’t find you too. But I guess you knew that.” She stayed with the family overnight. There wasn’t any way she’d be able to make her way back home in the darkness, so it was fine with her to be in the cave. The kittens woke hungry a couple of times in the night. Instead of having Golden go to them, Morgan carried them back and forth to their mother. She seemed to be all right with her helping that way as well.

When the sun was coming up, Morgan made sure that not only did the family have water, but she also scavenged as much as she could from the horses the men had come out here on. There was hardtack in abundance, but she was also able to get herself some much-needed flint, as well as some blankets. Taking it to the cave, she put the kittens on one of the blankets and then sat down to watch them fall over each other until they had their spot picked out. It was calming to watch them, she thought. They were just too little to do much more than be roly-poly little kittens. Giving the hardtack to Golden, she made her way to her home. It was further than she’d thought it might have been, and she didn’t arrive until the sun was nearly down. Going into the house by way of climbing up the back stairs, she heard her parents speaking on their balcony from her own window.

Sliding out onto her balcony, she stood deeply in the shadows to listen to what they might be saying. Her mother was standing at the railing, her father deeper in the room. “I cannot believe she’s gone.” Morgan started forward, wanting to assure her mother that she hadn’t been hurt at all. “This was a brilliant idea you had, Malcomb. To have it look as if she’d been kidnapped, then killed. I have never wanted anything more than that child dead.” Her heart hurt. Her mind didn’t know how this was really what her mother was saying. They weren’t close, but she never thought she’d want her dead. But even as her dad came out to the balcony, too, she watched the two of them as they stood there in an embrace.

dad came out to the balcony, too, she watched the two of them as they stood there in an embrace. “Well, it wasn’t nearly as hard as I thought it would be to get some men gathered up to take her. As you said, it’s a good thing now that she’s gone. When they find her body, it will be blamed on anything but me.” Mother said it wouldn’t be her fault either. “No. No one will bother with blaming you, my dear. For all they’ll know, you committed suicide because your daughter is gone.” It took her less time than it apparently did her mother to realize what her father was saying. As soon as he pushed her mother nearly over the railing, intending, she was sure, to make it look as if she had fallen to her death by her own hand, Mother grabbed her father’s coat. The two of them hung there for what seemed like forever. Would they both fall? Would they be able to save one another?

She didn’t care. So when her mother’s weight took them both over the edge, Morgan stood there for several minutes, thinking about what had just befallen her family. Looking over the edge of her balcony, she saw them there, tightly embraced as if in a lover’s hug and dead. Blood spread out beneath their heads as if a bucket of it had been poured over the two of them. Making her way to the kitchen area, she staggered twice in her grief. Not because they were dead—no, it was that they had planned her demise in such a cold way. Lincoln was there, the butler of the house when she entered. He took one look at her and sat her in the chair she’d spent more time in than the ones in the formal dining room.

Lincoln, she knew, would be her family from now on. “Child, what is it?” She must have been a mess or looked on edge. The slap to her cheek stung enough that she was brought out of whatever thoughts she’d been having. “What’s happened? Your parents, they told the household that you’d been kidnapped. Are you hurt?” She told him everything, not leaving out anything, including the cat that had saved her. Also, leaving no doubt to the older man that her parents had planned for her to be killed. Lincoln sat down across from her after making her a cup of tea that was mostly bourbon. “You are mistress of the house now. Tomorrow we will find their bodies whilst you are still abed.

You will say that you were out with the creatures of the field. They will believe that well enough. That is where you are most of the time.” She asked him about the cats. “‘Tis your decision. However, if you were to bring them here, none of the rest of the staff will mind. It is you we stayed for all these years, and not your parents.” “I’ll need help bringing them here.” He said he’d go with her. “They’re far. Much further than I had thought. But I wish them to be safe, Lincoln. She saved my life, and I will do the same for her and her family.” “You have a good heart, child. A very good one. We shall leave now and take lanterns with us. A basket too so that we might carry the little beasts.” She asked him if he didn’t want them here. “Nay, I want what you want. We all do. Tomorrow after your parents are found, we’ll be as we should have been. A good home and a safe one. Mark my words on that. I will talk to you as we go, now that you are mistress of the house, about what men will do to get to you.

They’ll want you, but you’re too stubborn to be a good wife to anyone seeking your hand. It might be well that there are cats here to protect you. You have become a very wealthy woman.” As they were making their way to the cave, she wondered if he knew how safe the house would be with leopards in it. Once the kittens grew up, they’d be as big as she was now. Smiling, she thought perhaps she wasn’t all that upset about her parents being dead. They’d been treating her as if she had been so for as long as she could remember. Golden seemed happy to see her. She licked her face and brushed her with her large paws. As Lincoln gathered up the kittens, she helped Golden outside to do her business. It took a great deal out of her, and Morgan had to carry her back into the cave. Once they were all loaded up in the buggy, she sat down with Golden to tell her what had happened.

“So I’m motherless except for you. I know you’re a cat, and I’m only a human, but I think we can get along. When the men start to come, and according to Lincoln, they will, I’ll need you to protect me too. I shan’t ever marry. Not only that, but I’m also going to make it my life’s work to make sure animals such as yourself are as safe as I can make them.” Arriving home well after the sun had settled in the sky again, she made sure the mother and kittens were safe in her parents’ big bed. There was a fire in the fireplace for them should the night turn too cold. Morgan also made sure the mother had plenty to eat, having given her one of the steaks her father would treat himself to daily while she had whatever else he had with his meal.

Sleep didn’t take its time capturing her, luring her to a night’s rest. It hit her right between the eyes and had her nearly sick with exhaustion. As she closed her eyes, sleeping in her own bed as if nothing had happened, she knew she’d keep her promises to not just Lincoln and the other staff but to herself as well. The animals here would need her, and she was going to make sure they were as safe as they could be while she was still living. ~*~ Four years later Morgan watched the man as he ran out of her home. How he’d gotten in was beyond her, but now that he was gone with a little less of his fancy clothing, she sat down on the front veranda and waited for the cats to come to her. Over the last month or so, men had been showing up at the oddest times to tell her that she must marry them.

They would all come around sooner rather than later. All of her leopards, as well as a plethora of other creatures, would come to make sure she’d not been harmed or taken away from them. None of them would be harmed here, and daily another one or two would come limping into the compound and be welcomed. Golden came to sit at her feet, and she smiled at her when she looked at her. “He had it coming. We both know that. The pompous ass thought if he could tear at my clothing, I’d allow him to marry me so I’d be happy. He said I’d need someone like him to watch over my money and keep me from dying an old spinster.

Apparently, women aren’t meant to think beyond having a man around. I’m much happier without him, I think. What did he think I’d been doing here all alone since my parents died? Waiting on someone to rescue me? Not likely.” Morgan slid to the floor and put Golden’s head on her lap. Running her hand down the length of the cat, she could feel her newest litter wiggling around. “I am worried about you, mistress cat. You’re heavier this time with your brood. Not to mention, I know the wound you suffered for me so long ago bothers you more daily. The babes you brought here that night, they have gone on to have their own children. I cannot believe so much time has passed since that night.” She thought of something and put her forehead to Golden’s. “I just realized that you’re a grandmother. Congratulations.” “That would make you an aunt in her eyes.”

Morgan reached for her gun, something she’d been carrying since that night, and found it gone. “You cannot kill me, mistress, but I would prefer that you not harm me either. I have come to speak with you about the good works you are doing here. The one you call Golden, she has asked me to come to speak to you about a great many things. In addition, I have some things I need to ask of you.” “Who are you?” The beautiful woman asked if she could tell her in a moment. “So long as you know that whatever it is you’re hawking, I want no part of. We’re doing very well here on our own.” “You are doing better than well, I think. The ground is fertile here, thanks to your way of doing things. Not all humans would leave an animal to rot on their land without doing something with it.”

Morgan told her that other animals took care of it. “They have indeed. Even the things the larger breeds cannot eat or use, the smaller creatures come to salvage what they can. You have a good system here. A system that will not be popular for a great many years.” “I don’t want to have to go into town.” The woman nodded, her smile something Morgan thought more than beautiful. “You said you came here because of Golden. She is a cat. How is that possible that she would call to you?” “Let me start at the beginning, please. The night your parents died, the night you came to help Golden, it was thought you should have died along with them. Sometimes, with humans, the apple does not fall far from the tree. But you are nothing like them, are you, sweet child? You are not only different than them, but a kinder, gentler person than any of us have ever seen before. We have all been watching you these last years.” Morgan asked her who they were.

“Ah, that brings me to your first question. I am Tellus, the terrestrial being that cares for and is wholly a part of the earth and the land you have here. Not from my doing, but your own. This land is rich beyond anything man has ever seen before.” Morgan didn’t speak, letting all the woman told her to settle into her mind. She’d been alone for most of her life now and had learned not to prattle on when there was no one to talk back to her. Petting Golden, she was glad to hear her purring. The rumbling of her throat was soothing to her for some reason.

“Mother Earth. I’ve read about you. You’re Roman.” She said that was correct. “All right. So you’re here because I have good land. However, I still don’t know why you took time out of what I’m sure is a busy day to tell me that.” “You are a jewel among all the stars in the sky, Morgan.” Confused at the words and their meaning, Morgan continued to pet her cat. “We, the other earth creatures, have been watching what you were doing here since that night. We’ve not had to once intervene in helping you care for the animals, all that you protect here. You have lifted a great burden from all of us.

Even creatures you may not be yet aware of have found a home here among the others and have been safe from harm. One such creature sits there on your leg. His name is Button.” Morgan looked down at her leg and saw the tiny creature standing there. She put out her free hand, and when he hopped upon it, she brought him closer to her face. Yes, he was a little man, just like the men that had been coming around but for his size. Then while she was watching him closely, he spread out his wings and fluttered above her palm for several seconds before settling down again. “Faerie.” He bowed before her. “I have read of such creatures as this one. They are thought to be a myth. Such as you are, Lady Earth. I have either hit my head, or I’m being visited by creatures that are as magical as the sun coming up and then resting in the other sky.” “You are seeing magic, my child.”

Nodding, she laid her hand back on her leg. Button didn’t sit on her leg again but stayed on her palm. “He wishes to be with you. To help you in the coming years. For as much as I’d like to say your life will be filled with only riches, we both know it is never that way.” “Nay, it is not. The banker says I owe him great funds for a loan my parents took out before they died. Also, I have a man who is trying his best to catch me unawares, so he might rape me to take my lands. I don’t think he means to keep me around much longer than it takes me to say, ‘I do.’ They only want what I have.” Tellus said she could help her with those things. “Thank you, my lady. But I’m sure you have enough to do now with the earth as large as it is.” “I do. But helping you is not something I take lightly, my child. We, all the creatures in charge of the parts of the earth you now own, are happy to help you.

And in doing so, they will get the help they need as well.” Morgan asked her what they wanted her to do. “You will do it, will you not? Even not knowing what it is we ask of you.” “I will help the earth for as much as it gives back to us here. And that, as you know, is a great deal. We are self-sufficient here. Water is ours to use as we see fit. There is a roof over our heads when necessary. The fields, as you have pointed out, are rich and give us back so much more than we can eat. I share what I cannot have put up or preserved.” Tellus told her she knew that as well. “If you need me to do more, I will do it to the best of my ability.” “Thank you.” Tellus looked at her, then at Golden as she continued. “Golden will stay with you until the kittens are born. Her children will be the first of many creatures that will take on this new magic that we wish you to help with.”

“She’s going to die.” Tellus nodded but didn’t look at her. “I thought when I’ve seen her around this time, she wouldn’t make it long after. You do know that she’s the only friend I have besides the people that work here? I’ve thought about, long hours of thinking, how I will make it without her counsel. Without her snuggling up to me when I need it. I don’t know that I want to. But I must, for the others.” “Yes, you will.” Tellus told her of the magic that would be given to her. About the babes that Golden would have and how they would go on to be great men, to help her in ways that Tellus and the others hadn’t thought of yet. “The magic they will get will help them to be a part of the world of men. To breach such places that even now frighten us a little. We will need you to help them blend into such places. To walk, talk, and act like real men. The abilities we will give them will make them a prize should anyone find out. So it is important that they do not give themselves away while men. Do you understand?”

“Yes. I’m to be their teacher.” Tellus told her she would also be their mother. “I have questions now, but I know I will have so many more when the time comes. I will teach them everything I can. Give them whatever step up they’ll need so long as I live. I promise you they will be the best of men too. Not like the ones that come here sniffing out an easy way to my home.” “You will not die either, Morgan. You will be around for their children to come into the world, as well as all the shifters that are to be born.” Morgan asked her about the men coming around. “They will not come around again should you wish it. Button will have an army of faeries to use that will come to your aid in that and anything else you might need them for. Do not be fearful of using them either. Rightly so, they are excited to serve one such as yourself. You have been titled with the name Queen of Shifters.” “You don’t have to do that, my lady. I said I would help you.” Tellus laughed, and it made Morgan smile. “I will do as asked.

The rest I will accept as part of my duties, but I don’t see myself using it overly much.” “I foresee you using the magic given to you much more than you think you will.” Tellus laughed again, bringing yet another smile to her face. “I will also give you a list of things you will need to invest in. They will fund you better than a bank will, and you will remain self-reliant at the same time. Also, the bank has been taken care of. He will no longer bother you about funds he thinks you owe him.” “Thank you for that.”

Morgan looked down at her friend and ally in all this. “What will become of me when you no longer have a use for me, my lady?” “There will always be a use for you, child. A creature such as you will forever bond with the earth and make everything around you a better place. I have such faith in you.” Morgan told her she could only do her best. “And that, my child, is all I could ask for.” The two of them talked throughout the morning and into the evening. Ending up in the living room where there was a fire roaring in the hearth, they were served their tea there, as well as juice. She was told she’d need to be drinking a great deal more of the elixir. And that the fresher it was, the better it would be for her after using magic.

At some point, Tellus took her hand into hers and gave her the magic she’d need. The power of it washed over her in waves, so much so that for several minutes she had to sit still in her seat and wait for it to settle out. Not only did she receive the magic, but the knowledge of how to use it. Also, things, as she’d been told, that she must invest in. Things that Tellus told her would be worth a great deal in the future. After Tellus left her to rest, she was told, Morgan sat in the yard at the back of her house. Lincoln came to sit with her a spell, telling her that there were faeries in the kitchen now that would make sure the household was safe. Also, he said, he’d been given magic as well. “It is to keep the house in order. To build out when you need it, my lady.” She said she’d been told she’d need to have a larger house.

“I find that hard to believe, but I will do what it takes to have you safe.” “I now have more land as well. Tellus told me there are now five thousand acres here that will be used for the animals in need. No one will be able to enter the land if they wish to harm anything that calls this place home. What am I to do with all this knowledge and wealth, Lincoln? I know I’m to teach the next generation of cats born to Golden, but how much do you think they’ll need from me? What am I to do when they go out and have their own leap? I shall be an old woman, with only you to keep me company.” He asked her if he was immortal as well. “You are. But I was told that at any time you wish to die, I could take it from you.

No harm will come to you with it either.” “I think I shall stay with you, my lady. I think we will need each other in the coming years, don’t you think?” She said she needed him every day. “You are so kind to me, Morgan, that I wonder at times why your parents wanted you dead.” “They were in love with themselves.” She knew that to be true as soon as she said it. Looking at the older man, she smiled at him. “You and I will do the best we can and hope that it’s right. Someday, I think, we’ll look back on this and wonder what all the fuss was about. Don’t you?” “I think I will hold my thoughts on that until such time as it comes to an end.” He laughed a little.

“Do you believe it will come to an end, my lady?” “No. I don’t. I don’t have any idea why, but I think we’re going to be having something new and something strange happening as a daily routine.” She stood up when he did. “Let us begin this new phase of our life, Lincoln, and hope we make it work better than the thoughts in my head are making it. All right?” “Whatever you wish, my lady. We will do well together, I believe.” She hoped so. It seemed like a great deal was depending on her doing just that. Making it work for the safety of all involved. She only hoped she knew enough and was strong enough to make it work for all of them.

Tony Griffin Brothers Release Blitz & Giveaway

Tony couldn’t believe what he was seeing on the security monitor. A woman and her kid were living in the alleyway next to his office, and they were in trouble. A man snuck up on her and snatched the kid. He had to do something….

Jana Cantrell wasn’t taking the news too well. She would have been dead and her son in the clutches of that maniac if it hadn’t been for her being Tony’s mate, and she was now immortal. She didn’t trust men. She had just escaped from the imprisonment of the maniac who had nearly killed her. No way in hell would she be enslaved by another….

Amazon USA https://amzn.to/3wDj3FP
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/3ySFlGo
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/3lBFYMk
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/tony-kathi-barton/1141498122?ean=2940186347408
GOOGLE PLAY Coming Soon
SMASHWORDS https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1148405
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/tony-14
ITUNES https://books.apple.com/us/book/tony/id6442844635
PAPERBACK https://amzn.to/3GbOtHN

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/61136018-tony?from_search=true&from_srp=true&qid=DSJY3Xo0lV&rank=1
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 4c99c-22188-images2b252812529.jpg

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Signed Coloring Book,
Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag Exlarge Only


https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is new-prizes.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ab532-winners.jpg

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
Kristin Peterson Signed Paperback
Teri Bellview Signed Paperback
Renee Johnson T-Shirt & Tote
Shirley Coursey T-Shirt & Tote

Packages will be mailed out on
Tuesday, May 24th, 2022

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote
Courtney Kinder Signed Paperback
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Christina Flynn Tea Totaler
Kristin Peterson Signed Paperback
Teri Bellview Signed Paperback
Renee Johnson T-Shirt & Tote
Shirley Coursey T-Shirt & Tote

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

Happy Reading,

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is cropped-cropped-a929a-e812d-03kathisbartonlogotransparent.png

Prologue


Charles, Charlie to most people who knew him, was so lost he hadn’t any idea if he was walking on the ground or the sky. Of course, he knew the difference, but it was so dark out tonight that if there had been a moon shining, he couldn’t see it. When he sat himself down on a log to get his bearings again, he paused in his thinking to look at what could have made the sound he’d heard. Terrified out of his mind when he saw glowing eyes looking at him, Charlie sat as still as he could. The eyes grew larger and incredibly more shiny as the beast made its way to him. He didn’t run, knowing that even if he knew where he was at the moment, the wolf would know it better. It would chase him down and kill him without any hesitation.

The wolf, a big gray fella, just stood there within a few inches of his outstretched legs. When he laid down, putting his heavy head on Charlie’s leg, Charlie had another moment of fear. The thing never took his eyes off him either. As soon as he felt he was brave enough to try and talk to the wolf, he was gone, and in his place was a man. A fully-clothed man with the gray of the wolf’s fur colored into his hair. Even his eyes were the same as the wolf’s, Charlie thought. Still, neither of them moved until the man sat back on his butt and regarded him. “You live on the property not far from here, is that correct?” Charlie told him he was only squatting there until they found him. But he was a mite lost. “Yes, I’ve been following you for some time.

And in all that time, never did you harm any other animal you came across, and there were plenty too. Why is that?” “You mean the rabbit and the family of deer?” The man nodded. “I don’t have a need for meat just now. I only kill when I have to. When my belly feels like it can’t go another minute without some meat in it. And even then, I use it up the best I can. What I can’t use, I find some other animal that will use the rest. Why do you ask?” “I’ll get to that. You didn’t seem that surprised when I changed from wolf to man. Can you tell me why that is?” He nodded and told him what he’d been seeing a lot of lately.

“Yes, war will make a man wish for better times. So you were surprised but just wrote it off as being another strange thing that had no explanation. That’s a very good explanation, I think.” “They say the war is about over. I don’t know much about that. I can still hear shooting when I’m out and about. I don’t have any land left because the soldiers took it all when they was coming through. Not that it was much more than a bunch of rocks and stumps, to begin with.”

The man only nodded. “I’m Charles Griffin. Most call me Charlie. Some call me a great deal more, but I ignore them. Not everybody was able to go to school all the time. I had my family to feed when my daddy up and got sick. Momma died a few weeks ago, and I’ve been roaming around since looking for work. I don’t suppose you know anyone that might be wanting an extra hand around, do you?” “I do, as a matter of fact. My name is Romeo Hank. The Hank is for when I need a last name. But I do have something I’d like to propose to you if you’ve got the time to listen.”

Charlie told him he didn’t have anything but time right now. “All right. I have a medium-sized pack. You can see a few of them over there watching over us. They’re all just wolves. I’m the only wolf shifter I know. They’re a good bunch. Hungry most of the time, but then all of us are, correct?” “Yes. Some more than others. At least I can find me a bit of string and fashion me up a hook to use.” Romeo told him that was excellent. “You need me to fish some fish out for you and your pack? I don’t mind at all doing that for you. In fact, I’d be powerful happy to help you out.”

“Not just yet. But I think I will take you up on it soon. I have a daughter. Her name is Luna. Such a beautiful name, don’t you think?” Charlie asked if it meant moon. “It does. Thank you. You’re very well educated for a man with no means of living.” “My mom was a school teacher when I was born. They fired her, of course, when she had me. Since my dad was gone, she took whatever jobs she could get to support us. She taught me to read and to figure. I can write too, but I do have to think about the spelling of things. Can you write?” Romeo said he’d been given a great gift in that. “I think so too. When I find me a newspaper or some little old book, I treasure it for a bit.

Then I pass it on if I can. I don’t have to know the people in the paper. I just like reading about their stories. Are you going to tell me what this is about?” “I am. I was working up to it, but I believe you to be a man that can be trusted with things in life. I would like to change you into a wolf. One such as I am. You’ll be a man when you wish. A wolf when necessary. There will be magic, as well as wealth.” Charlie told him he didn’t have use for wealth, but food all the time would be nice. “That is precisely what I’m speaking about, Charlie, my good man.”

Throughout the rest of the night and well into the morning, they spoke of things Romeo needed from him. It wasn’t brought up again about him being changed, but Romeo did tell him that his daughter had found out that he, plain old Charlie, was her mate. The soul reason he’d not been harmed while wandering around in the woods. “Do you understand what it is I want you to do?” Charlie said he thought so. “No. I’m sorry. I can’t allow you to go into this, only thinking you understand. Please, ask me anything you’d like.

You must be clear on this. I need you to be clear on how it is I wish for you to someday take over for me.” Romeo never got upset with him when he asked his questions. If Charlie was honest with himself, which he usually tried not to be, he was afraid that Romeo had picked the wrong man. That he’d be better off finding himself someone else to take over his empire. “You’re the right man, Charlie. When I told you I’d been following you around, I want you to know that it wasn’t just last evening, but for some time now. I’ve seen you share your last bit of food with people. Work for someone that cannot do for themselves, and not take anything but a bit of bread and water.

You’re a very good man. A better man that I am.” Charlie started to protest. “No. I’m correct in picking you as my replacement. And if that is some of your worry, being an alpha, you’ve no worries there either. I will not leave this earth for the next until you are comfortable with what is needed of you. Now. If you’ve no more questions, I shall leave you to allow you to think on it.

I’ll be back here tomorrow so you can tell me your answer. I know I have picked the right man, Charlie. It’s something you can do easily to save this pack and my daughter.” Luna followed him as he walked around. He’d thought about calling back Romeo and asking more questions, but he didn’t. Sitting down again, his leg bothering him from sitting so long, he looked at the big, beautiful wolf. “You’re not really his daughter, are you?” She shook her head. “I didn’t think so. Is there any more of the others that he claims are his children?”

She nodded this time, and he determined by asking questions that it was one other female. “I don’t know what to think about all this, to be honest with you. Are you my mate? Is he telling me the truth? I just don’t know what to think.” She nodded or shook her head after each of the questions he put to her. Yes, she was his mate. Yes, Romeo was telling the truth. There were many more questions and answers. He was headed back to the area where he’d first seen Romeo when he felt the pain take his breath away as it slammed into his left shoulder.

Falling back, he hit his head and lay there while trying his best to catch his breath. That was when he heard the other gunshots, the wolves howling and trying to hide. Pulling Luna toward him, he whispered harshly into her ear, hoping that at least she’d understand him enough to know that she must warn the others. “Go. Tell Romeo to hide the pack. To make sure you and your sister are safe.” She didn’t want to leave him, whimpering at him as she laid her head on his shoulder. “Go. Please. Run and escape before they hurt you too.” When she left him, Charlie closed his eyes. Opening them when he felt the shadow darken over him, he looked up in time to see the barrel of a large rifle. He was a goner, he knew that. He could only hope that Luna and the others were safe.

Hamish Perry’s Nest Release Blitz & Giveaway

Lander was good at her job. What she wasn’t good with was people, most people, in fact. Especially attornies who weren’t prepared when they cross-examined her as a witness. She didn’t care. She had work to do. Leaving the courthouse was the last thing she remembered when she woke up in the hospital.

Happy to have finally found his mate after all these centuries, Hamish, an ancient vampire, had been following her scent all morning. The scent led him to the courthouse, where he decided to wait until she came out. But shots rang out when Lander stepped out of the building. Hamish would have to move fast, or he would find and lose his mate at the same time.

AMAZON USA https://amzn.to/3MXECaD
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/3PbFKtg
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/3Frllvw
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/hamish-kathi-s-barton/1141448048?ean=2940160803913
GOOGLE PLAY https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kathi_S_Barton_Hamish?id=EnFuEAAAQBAJ
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/hamish-1
SMASHWORDS https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1145982
I TUNES https://books.apple.com/us/book/hamish/id1622986783

Add it to your booklist today!!!

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/61049615-hamish?from_search=true&from_srp=true&qid=eHVo1bSGJe&rank=2

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 4c99c-22188-images2b252812529.jpg

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Signed Coloring Book,
Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag Exlarge Only


https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is new-prizes.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ab532-winners.jpg

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
Courtney Kinder Signed Paperback
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Christina Flynn Tea Totaler

Packages will be mailed out on
Tuesday, May 10th, 2022

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote
Courtney Kinder Signed Paperback
Robin Dennison Signed Paperback
Christina Flynn Tea Totaler

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

Happy Reading,

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is cropped-cropped-a929a-e812d-03kathisbartonlogotransparent.png

“Please state your entire name for the record.” Lander did as she was told. “And your occupation pertaining to what you’re here for today.” “I’m a diver. As for why I’m here, I’ve no idea. I was summoned based on the findings of another diver.” The attorney went back to the table to look at his notes, saying nothing. Lander had a look around the fancy courtroom. The room was overdone as far as she could see. Large windows were hidden behind long blinds, so there weren’t any blinding rays coming into the room. Although she thought it might be nice to have the sunshine in the room, she could also understand the need for some sort of break from it.

The carpet on the floor was about as stained as the muddy river she’d been in only last night. Chairs instead of benches were nice. Oak, she’d bet, with armrests on them. The pictures on the wall were of past judges and officers that had been killed in the line of duty. Black ribbons wrapped one corner of each frame. Her father had been a judge in good standing, but not in this state. He worked out in California, where she had grown up. When Dad retired some years ago, he and his new wife, Lilith—Lander’s stepmom—decided to sell their home and see the world. That had been three years ago. While she did speak to him on occasion, she didn’t really miss him all that much.

They’d never been what anyone would call even remotely close. “Ms. Henderson, it says here that you were brought in as an expert witness.” Lander didn’t ask for clarification. If he wanted answers, he was going to have to ask her questions. This wasn’t her first courtroom appearance. She’d like to think she was also an expert on pissing lawyers off. “Well, what do you have to say about the condition of the body that was retrieved?” “I don’t know anything about the body that was retrieved. As for its condition, I wouldn’t have the first clue about that either, as I’ve never seen it or heard the file number.” He did some more shuffling. Lander turned to the judge.

“Sir, I was summoned to be here just last night. I’m sure if I had been told I was to be a witness to anything, I would have had more time to go over the notes. I don’t know who did the dive, the retrieval, or where it might have happened. I’m completely in the dark as to what is going on here.” Judge Wilson did the paper shuffle thing too. “It says here that you were given a file folder as early as a week ago. That in that, it had the pictures, notes, and the information you mentioned. You didn’t receive anything?” Instead of answering, she asked him if he had an address where it was supposed to have gone. “It says here that it was hand-delivered to you at the sight of another job you were on in the area of DC.” “Then no, I wouldn’t have been there to get the paperwork. I’ve not been to DC in over three months. In fact, I’ve not been to my own home in over five months. Since I work for several states and agencies on finding bodies and such, I’ve been working nonstop for a while now.”

Judge Wilson called the attorney to his dais. “What is the meaning of this? You bring in an expert who hasn’t any idea what the hell is going on? On top of that, you also stated that she was hand-delivered the paperwork that should have been given to her over a week ago. What are you playing at, Taylor? I’m not going to put up with your shenanigans today.” “All she had to do was ask for the file here, and I would have handed it to her. The expert that was supposed to be here called me three days ago and told me he’d had a heart attack and wasn’t going to be able to make it. It took me that long to find her to come in.”

Wilson asked Taylor if he’d been dropped on his head as an infant. “Not that I’m aware of. But she is the best there is, and I thought it would be easy for her to tell us what she saw in the pictures. That’s all it would take.” They both looked at her. The judge was pissed if the large veins in his forehead and temple were any indication. When she was handed the file from Taylor, she didn’t even bother opening it. He said for her to look at the pictures and tell them what they wanted to know. It wasn’t as simple as her opening it up and looking at the pictures to determine anything that went on at the dive. “This isn’t going to help me or anyone else. I don’t know how many experts you’ve called in before this, but this chick doesn’t play like that. I don’t have any information that goes with these photos.

First of all, I wasn’t on the dive. Also, I don’t know the conditions that brought the person into the, what I’m assuming was water. In a car? Did he jump? Pushed? I haven’t any clue. How long was this person in the water? Where was the water? What were the weather conditions when it happened? Also, when the body—again, I’m assuming—was retrieved. Pictures tell me nothing. If you wanted me to be an expert, you’d have to give me every note, every sample that was taken at the site, as well as I’d need to talk to the person who did the actual job. Pictures mean shit if you want me to tell you the conditions of anything.” Taylor told her to watch her language. “I will not. You pulled me from a job where I do know what’s going on to come here. You’ve wasted my time and that of the people in here.

Also, you should know I’m not free to just come and go as you please. From the moment you ‘summoned’ me, your firm is being charged two hundred dollars an hour. As I said, I’m not cheap, nor free.” “I’m not going to pay you. You haven’t done a thing that was required of you.” She told Taylor that if he was better at his job, she wouldn’t be here with her thumb up her ass. “Your Honor, she’s being hostile to me. Not to mention using profanity in this courtroom.” “If I were sitting there working with you, I believe I would have been a good deal more hostile towards you. Now get over there and sit down while I talk to Ms. Lander.” Wilson turned to her, his face holding a smile, but it was as forced as she was in trying not to be really pissed off. “Now, young lady. How much information can you tell me, if any, from those photos? Other than the fact that the man is dead.”

“That would be about it. Pictures don’t really tell much anyway in a crime scene—that’s why a lot of departments are filming. Pictures don’t show depth. They’re only one-dimensional, so you don’t see what is just below the ear. Or what might be in the mouth. I’m sorry, sir, but as I said, there is nothing I can add to this. You’d be better off bringing in an expert on water deaths. A coroner would even be able to tell you more than I could.” Wilson asked Tayler if he’d called in a medical examiner. He said he hadn’t. “Sir, I would help if I could, but I have no information. And even if I did, there isn’t any way I could get you accurate information for a trial if it comes to that, from what I’ve been handed right now.” After another thirty minutes, she was let go. To say that things were finished would have been far from the truth, as Taylor was still getting his ass reamed by the judge for failure on his part in getting someone to help him.

Just as she was coming out of the building, someone tackled her to the ground. Hitting her head twice on the hard steps of the courthouse, she blacked out. When she woke up, Lander knew she was in a hospital. Not only did the white and gray walls give it away, the ugliest curtain she’d ever seen was pulled around her bed. Sitting up, she nearly threw up. The pain was so bad. The man’s voice had her turning toward him but much slower than she might have. “You have a concussion, and they need to put some stitches in your head.” She asked him what had happened. “I happened. That’s why you’re here in the cubical and not in the morgue, where a lot of other people are. There was a shooting that happened just as I took you to the ground. I’m sorry about your head. But at least you’re still living.”

“Who did the shooting? I’m assuming it was a drive-by?” He said he didn’t know. They’d asked him to come here with her. “Ambulance?” “Yes. I might have brought you here on my own, but you were bleeding a great deal, and I was worried about the laceration you have. Plus, there was still shooting going on when the first ambulance pulled up. It came from one of the higher buildings across the street. I’m Hamish Perry, by the way.” She told him her name as she strained to sit up on the bed. “They wanted to make sure you lie still. Something about the way your wound is deep and wide.” “I have a hard head, and I hate hospitals with a passion.” She looked at him while she let her body adjust to the new position. “Why did you save me? I mean, there are, according to you, several others that you could have knocked on their ass and given them a concussion.” He laughed. It was cute and charming. However, she wasn’t into cute or charming right now. Thinking about moving off the bed, she watched him stand up.

Lander had a feeling that if she were to fall, he’d catch her. “I’m a vampire of considerable age. If you’re wondering why I’m out during the day, I can tell you that I’m old enough to be able to withstand a great deal more light than a younger vampire.” She watched as he took two steps toward her. Lander told him that he was swaying. “Actually, that would be you swaying. Also, you seem to be rolling your head about more and more as you sit there. Would you mind lying back on the bed?

Otherwise, I’m going to have to pick you up and hold you. I don’t know that you’re going to like that any more than what else I have to tell you.” “I don’t care.” Her belly was churning up, and her head felt slightly too heavy for her shoulders. “I’m going to be sick.” His hands at the side of her head seemed to be just the right pressure to make her feel stable for a few minutes anyway. The rest of her body felt like it had been wrung out, turned inside out, and wasn’t going to let her stay upright. Just as she was sure she was going to puke all over the man in front of her, she was without pain. “You’re still hurt and very weak. Just let them stitch you up, and I think you’ll be all right.” She asked him what he’d done to her. “We’ll talk about that when you get out of here. I believe they’re going to keep you overnight.

I’ll stay with you to make sure you’re all right.” “You said, vampire. That you’re old and a vampire.” He said he was one. Yes. “You’re not telling me something. Something to do with why I’m feeling better.” “Not better, no. However, I’ve taken away your pain for the moment. Once they get you numbed to be stitched up, I’ll talk to you.” She demanded that he tell her right now. “All right. I’m your mate. I’ve been chasing your scent all morning since I happened upon it at the convenience store down the street. I was waiting for you outside the courthouse when I heard the shooting. I saved you from being shot because I knew I’d not touched you as yet, and you’d be killed. You’re now an immortal, the same as I am. Lander, are you listening to me?” “I am, but I’m not sure what you’re saying.

My head is all fuzzy. You said you’re my mate? I’m not a vampire.” The curtain swooshed open, the sound of the rings making her head spin again. The nurse told them what she was going to do and that a room had been set up for her. Hamish, she thought that was his name, sat down in the chair again while she was being strapped to the bed. “What are they doing to me?” You’re moving around too much for them, Lander. Lie still, or they’re going to have to put you under. It’s all right, love. Just be still. She couldn’t. Her mind was all over the place with what he’d said to her. Lander, the nurse is afraid your concussion is far worse than the doctors are saying. She is right.

Lander asked him how he was talking to her mind. I’m your mate. Once I gave you a bit of my blood to keep you from dying out there, we formed a connection. Let the medication take you under, Lander. The nurse is worried for you when you speak out loud to me. Just let it take you under. That’s my girl. ~*~ Hamish waited in the waiting room for Lander to be brought out of surgery. They couldn’t get her body to calm with what they could give her in the emergency department. The way she was thrashing around made them think she might have a brain bruise that was causing it. He knew it was from her thinking about the few things he’d told her. Stretching out his legs, he wondered what he should be doing now. While he knew only what he could get from her mind, there were still a great many things he needed to know about her sooner rather than later.

Like that cancer that had been in her bone marrow, as well as spots of it on her brain. She didn’t know he’d healed her of her cancer, of course. In fact, she’d not ever get any kind of sickness again. Once he acknowledged her, she was healed of all that and more. There were no longer spots on her breasts that he was sure no one had found yet, as they’d been very small. Her hearing was now perfectly pitched instead of her having tinnitus in her ear. She was as healthy as he was, with the exception of the wound on her head. He would have healed it by now, but there were just too many humans around that would be suspicious if she were suddenly healed. Standing up when his name was called, he made his way to the nurses’ stations.

The nurse there, an elderly woman, was smiling at him when he arrived at her area. “The doctor wanted me to tell you that your wife is calmer now. They put in forty-three stitches and have made sure there were no foreign objects in the wound.” He thanked her. “They will be keeping her overnight, I’m afraid. She’s been given a lot of medication, and he’s not sure how well she’ll react to that.” “I’ll need to make arrangements for me to be able to stay here with her.” She said she’d already taken care that Lander had one of the rooms with space for guests. “Thank you very much. I don’t want to leave her in the event she wakes up.” Yes, that would be a disaster if she woke up too soon. Then she’d tell everyone that he was indeed not her husband and wasn’t related to her at all. Hamish smiled at his own thoughts as he wrote down the information about which room Lander was going to be in, as well as the outside line, so their family could call and check on them. Going back to his seat, he pulled out his cell.

Who to call? his mind thought. It wasn’t as if he had anyone around close that would want to know he’d found his mate. He’d tell his grandda after Lander was out of the hospital, or he’d be here every second of her stay. Last he’d heard from his grandda, the man had been living the easy life on one cruise after another. Should he call her family? They weren’t close. He couldn’t find a single memory that was recent in her mind about them. No sisters or brothers. Just a dad that was on his fourth marriage to a woman nearly Lander’s age. Hamish also knew her mother had remarried, and they weren’t close either.

He thought that very sad, but nothing he’d not encountered year after year with humans. Not only did they not respect their elders, but they treated children with the same disregard. Putting his cellphone away, he decided now was not the time to make any calls. If she wanted him to call her parents, or she wanted to call them, he’d be there for her in the event things went south. As it seemed to happen a good deal when they were all together. They rolled her bed in about an hour later. The doctor spoke to him about what they’d done for Lander and how well she’d taken the medication. Hamish told him they’d not been together long—which was the truth—and he was still learning about her. After he left them, Hamish touched his finger to the bandage covering most of her head and gave her a little more of his magic. She was going to have a hell of a headache in the morning, he knew.

Leaning back on the seat, he thought about what needed to be done to prepare things for his mate. While he had a house—several of them, as a matter of fact—he’d never been one to upgrade things. In fact, he’d been sleeping in a cave lately. There was no need for him to have a stove or working lights in the place he was staying, so that had to be something he took care of quickly. Also, he did have a bed—not a coffin-like the movies projected men like him to sleep in—but it wasn’t suitable for a woman to want to sleep in. It was narrow, hard as stone, and without any linens on it. Not that he spent all that much time in the house or bed, but it would be something that had to be cared for before he brought Lander home. Or would they live in her home? It mattered little to him where they lived. Hamish had plenty of money if she wanted to start from scratch.

While he’d been looking around in her head, he noted that she spent very little time at her home. Working a great deal, she tended to live from one hotel to the next, as her job kept her hopping. She was a diver. It seemed such a small thing to call her that when she was sought after by agencies all around the world. He’d looked her up after finding out her name and knew that even though everyone thought her name was Lander, it was actually Aulander Fitzgerald Henderson. He also knew she was named from the little town in North Carolina where her mother had been born. Hamish hadn’t been able to find any reference to the name Fitzgerald, but he would soon enough. When the nurse came in to take Lander’s blood pressure and temp, he stepped into the hall. Making sure there was no one around, he took himself to the local shop and got some magazines, as well as a couple of books. He was also able to purchase a tablet he was going to use to research his new mate and her family.

Returning to the hospital was easy enough. He appeared in her bathroom and came out when he knew the coast was clear. Sitting down, he reached out to his grandda, only just realizing that he was supposed to go on some kind of cruise with him in the next couple of days. “Oh, son, I’m so happy to hear from you. I was going to talk to you later tonight. I’m about finished with riding around on a boat. Nowhere for me to feel the grass under my feet— What’s happened? Where are you?” He told him he was fine and that he was in the hospital. “I’m not sure how you reckon that being fine and in the hospital are the same thing, but I’ll come to see you. Is the room empty where you are?” “Just hang on a minute.”

He asked him again what was wrong. “Nothing. My mate found me today. Nearly scaring ten years off my life.” Grandda appeared in the room with him, so close to the bed that he wondered if he’d been hurt in his appearance. When he waved him off after asking him if he was fine, Grandda stared at Lander for several minutes before he spoke. “She sure is a pretty little thing, Hamish. What happened that brought the two of you in here?” He told him how she’d been in the courthouse, as well as how he’d followed her there by her scent. “So she’s been shot but is going to be all right. How bad was it when you first found her? I’m betting she was far from all right.” “Yes, she would like to know too.” Lander looked at him, then at his grandda, before looking at him again. “He has to be related to you, but I’m doubting very much that he’s your dad. You seem closer than that.

I have no idea why I feel that way, but there you go. Why are you even still hanging around here? Don’t you have some bodies to drain or something? And you.” She pointed at his grandda. “Why are you here? I’m sure you guys have a lot more things to do than to sit around with a measly human. I’m right, aren’t I? You are still a vampire?” “Yes. We both are vampires. Lander, this is my grandda. He’s been on a cruise until a few minutes ago. His name is Charles Hamish Perry. Grandda, this is Aulander Henderson Perry.” Grandda stood up and put out his hand. “He is harmless, I promise you.” “What makes you think I am?” She sat up higher on the bed as she stared at his grandda.

“I don’t have a lot of information on either of you, but this one tells me that he’s my mate. I understand the concept—I work with a few shifters—but he must be wrong about this thing with us. I’m not all that healthy and won’t be around for very much longer. Not the way things are going in my life. I have cancer, and it’s killing me.” “You’re not ill, child.” Grandda stepped closer to Lander with his hand still out. “If you were to take my hand into yours, I can tell you a great deal about yourself. Some I’m sure you don’t even know.” “I’m sure you can, but just for now, we’ll shake without having a meet and greet about my life.” Grandda laughed and told her she was enjoyable. “Not really. It’s why I spend a great deal of time on my own. I don’t enjoy people all that much.”

“Neither does my grandson. Until recently, I think he was staying in a cave someplace, working out a way to end his life.” He wasn’t sure how his grandda had figured that out, but he didn’t say anything to him. “He’s lost a lot of family recently. His parents have been gone for some time, but he had a brother who ended his life recently, as well as his aunt. Hamish does have a sister, but she’s not been around for quite some time. I think she’s off her noodle, but then she’s always been flighty. As for the others? They were bored. So was Hamish. But you’ll keep him on his toes, won’t you?” “Not if I can help it.” The nurse came in and was surprised to see Lander sitting up so well. But Grandda told her, with magic, that everything was normal. When she left them, Lander said she was starving. “I could eat a horse. Do you guys do that? Have a horse for your food?” “You’re very snarky, aren’t you? No, we don’t have horses. In answer to your earlier question, no, we don’t drain people either.

Grandda showed up here when I told him you’d found me.” She said she’d not be taking credit for that—she’d not been looking for anyone. “Be that as it may, you’ve found me. I’m not sure of a great many things, but I am sure that you and I are going to get along well.” “You mean if I listen to your every command? Don’t count on it, buster. I have a life, and I’m going to continue to live it despite you being in the background.” He said he wanted to be a part of her life. “Tough. I’m sick and dying. I love my job, but I’m going to have to give it up soon because—”

“You no longer have cancer, Lander. Even the spots on your breasts that were much too small to see as yet are gone. If you’d give it a chance, I think you’ll find out you’re hearing better than you ever were. The bad break at your left ankle isn’t aching as it normally would at this time of the day. You’re healthy and in good shape. You’re no longer going to die. As I said before, you’re immortal, just as I am.” When she sat up fully, he thought she was going to attack him. Standing too, he was surprised when she got off the bed and took them both to the floor. “Lander?” Grandda got down on the floor too. While he didn’t seem to know what was happening, he nearly screamed when the door exploded behind him. Pressing her to the floor to keep her safe, Hamish wasn’t the least bit surprised when Grandda left them in a poof and returned quickly after.

“The man from this morning was going to kill me. His name was Taylor or something. I could…Christ, I could hear his heart racing, and that’s what alerted me to him being hyped up on something. Then for some reason, somehow, I was able to feel his intent about killing me. Why? He was going to kill me because I—because he thinks I made him look like a fool in the courtroom.” Lander looked at Grandda. “Did you kill him? I can’t hear him anymore.” “Yes.” Grandda helped them both up. Lander laid back down on the bed but didn’t stop staring at his grandda. “He wouldn’t have stopped, child. He would have harmed you in some way that would have gotten him killed anyway.” “Because of Hamish.” It wasn’t a question, but he nodded to her anyway. When she pulled the sheet up and over her chest to her neck, he could feel her stress. “I’m very sleepy now. I want to rest. Thank you both for being here with me and for killing that man. I’m sure you’re right. He was a fool, and foolish people never think they’re in the wrong.

Even if it’s glaring them in the face. I’m sleepy now.” Hamish watched as she closed her eyes. Reaching out to touch her hand, he helped her rest. He could feel her terror as well as her need for a great deal of rest. He helped her with that. When she was in a deeper sleep, he turned to his grandda. “Will it come back and bite either of us in the ass?” Grandda told him Taylor would be found as a suicide. “Thank you for that. He was going to kill her, and I didn’t feel a thing. What if he’d gotten by me?” “I don’t think you’ll have to worry over that too much, Hamish.

You were making sure she was doing all right when it got by you. I’m thinking you’ll never get that involved again with her where something will get by you. Or perhaps that is her superpower. That she can protect you when you need it. You remember how your grandma could just know when the humans were coming to kill us off? It’s the reason we don’t put it out there that we’re vampires anymore. Humans get it into their head that we’re there for the killing.” “This man, he really was going to kill her. For her being smarter than him.” Grandda told him that was about right. “I wonder what it is that would drive a person to do something like that in a large hospital.” “I don’t know, son. I don’t. However, the cameras are all fixed that he would have been seen on. The staff is also none the wiser. I already fixed up the door and walls while you two were talking.”

Grandda looked at Lander. “I’m already about in love with the child. She saved us both, but especially you, from being shot up. In my book, that makes her about perfect.” “I’m falling in love with her as well.” Grandda decided to go and get some food for Lander when she woke up. He did know she wasn’t one to eat a lot of sweets—that had been forefront in her mind when she’d been thinking she was hungry. “Grandda, when I go to rest later, will you keep an eye on her for me after you return with food? Please? I need a little downtime, or I’m not going to do either of us any good.” “You know I will. It’ll be my pleasure to do so.” Grandda told him to go on home now, that he had this. “You rest up. I don’t know why I’m thinking this, but I feel like she’s going to keep you hopping for a while. I hope so. She’s perfect for you.” He didn’t know if she was perfect or not, but he knew Grandda was correct. She was going to keep him on his toes, and he was looking forward to it. Yes, having a mate was going to be epic. Hamish popped home, the cave that Grandda had been talking about, and laid down on the bed he’d made for his stay. Tomorrow he was going to have to get things organized for his mate. He only hoped no one was going to be out to kill her again anytime soon.

Marcus Prince of Tigers Release Blitz & Giveaway

Dakota was doing all she could do to keep it together. She was a widow trying to raise her young daughter and between jobs to boot. Helping her granny and her aunt move into the School House Condos, Dakota was reminded again about how much she didn’t have. Her granny’s offer of a handout was too much. She wanted to make it on her own.

Micky had a feeling that Dakota would be Marcus’s mate. Marcus didn’t want any part of Micky’s matchmaking and said he’d be out of town. But Marcus had a change of heart and decided to see for himself if Micky was right.

Dakota was scared to death. She was mated to a black tiger. Everything was happening too fast. The Prince family was great, but they were too big, too loud, and too everything. It was all too much. And when Dakota found out that Queen Aurora had plotted her entire life, that was the last straw.

Amazon USA https://amzn.to/3LoPqOp
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/36V8i8Z
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/37R1qtx
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/marcus-kathi-s-barton/1141397394?ean=2940161121726
SMASHWORDS https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1144348
ITUNES http://books.apple.com/us/book/id1621362779
GOOGLE PLAY https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kathi_S_Barton_Marcus?id=ISRtEAAAQBAJ
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/marcus-30
PAPERBACK https://amzn.to/3EYZ5c5

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/60894301-marcus

Harper Wilson and all her siblings were relieved when they received the notice of their parents’ demise. No one deserved it more, and the only reason Harper agreed to go back to that little town in Ohio was to make sure they were truly dead.

Bryant Prince and his family were immortals and hadn’t aged since they’d reached the age of twenty-eight. He and his family had always lived next door to the Wilsons, but he never knew the Wilson children. The Wilsons had always kept to themselves, so no one had any idea what was going on in the little house of horrors. If they had, the Wilson parents would have been dead a long time ago.

There was nothing left of the Wilson house but one wall. The fire had taken the rest. The garage, however, was still intact, and this was where Harper wound up. Drawn in by dark, morbid memories from her childhood. Bryant watched her, knowing that he’d found his mate.

Allison Sheppard had come back to town to bury her siblings. Allie’s sister and two brothers had robbed the local bank. Samson Prince had killed two of them to protect the innocent people in the bank, her baby brother was sitting in a jail cell awaiting trial. Allie wanted to wash her hands of all of them.

It didn’t take Allie but a moment to realize that the entire town looked on her as a pariah, like she was responsible for what her siblings did. Not that she could blame them, but the silent accusations did hurt. The sooner she was finished with this mess, the better. She would leave this town and good riddance.

Samson only wanted to make the woman understand that they weren’t monsters, and he had no choice in the bank, but from the moment he was within two feet of her, her scent overwhelmed him. Allie was his mate, and this changed everything….

Piper James was at the funeral home doing the hardest thing she’d ever had to do—bury her mother. The last ten years had been difficult, with her dad’s illness then him ultimately dying, and then her mother being diagnosed with cancer. Her siblings, Mary and Louis, had been no help at all, financially or lending a hand with their care. Now that their mother was gone, those two were going to be a handful, Piper just knew it.
Fisher Prince, a rare black tiger shifter, had a gift. He was able to find people and things with little effort. When a judge called him and asked him to find Piper and keep her safe from her siblings, Fisher agreed to help him out, but he wasn’t expecting to find his mate in the process.
The bond between the two was nearly immediate, and when he gave her a ring gifted to him by Aurora, queen of the earth, neither was prepared for what happened next.
Mary and Louis were never going to stop pursuing Piper unless someone intervened. Would the Prince family be in time to stop the inevitable?

Emmie Rankin didn’t trust men. She had been brutally raped at fourteen and now had her daughter, Olivia, as a result. Olivia was now a teen herself. Although an attorney by trade, Emmie had had to give up her practice to stay at home and take care of her father and her child.

Kylan Prince was a black tiger shifter. He had been waiting a long time for his mate to come into his life. Now that she was finally here, he was determined to do everything he could to convince her that he was what she and her daughter needed in their lives.



Micky had so much going on around her, it was making her head spin. Her sister was shot, her father was killed in the same incident, and the doctor had diagnosed her with terminal cancer. If it wasn’t for the Prince family, her sister, Rowan, would be a death’s door. Their shifter blood had healing properties, and that was the only thing that pulled her through. Now, Rowan was determined the Prince family would save Micky too.
Marcus told Micky she wasn’t his mate, but he bet she was Harley’s. Micky was never one to hide in a corner waiting for answers. She walked right up to Harley and buried her nose in his throat. At his moan—or her own, she knew as surely as she was standing there who he was to her.


BRYANT  https://amzn.to/2vfp107

2.Samson https://amzn.to/2PruUBc
3.Fisher https://amzn.to/3gp4OtV
4.Kylan https://amzn.to/3cNLOY3
5.Harley https://amzn.to/3D6anu4

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 4c99c-22188-images2b252812529.jpg

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Signed Coloring Book,
Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag Exlarge Only


https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is new-prizes.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ab532-winners.jpg

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote

Packages will be mailed out on
Friday, April 29th 2022

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote
Maria Dalmau Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Tote Bag
Pauline Westberry T-Shirt and Tote

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

Happy Reading,

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is cropped-cropped-a929a-e812d-03kathisbartonlogotransparent.png

Prologue


“Grannie, are you sure about this? I mean, you’re giving up a great deal of space to live in what amounts to a one-room classroom.” Grannie told her to behave. “I thought I was. I could have said that while it’s nice, it’s certainly not anything you’re used to living in. Not only that, there is no room for you to have anyone serve you. You’re used to the finer things in life, not living in this kind of space with a bunch of strangers.”

“You’re a snob. Which I don’t understand because you won’t take a dime from me and refuse to let me help you out of a squander. You are, you know. I just want to point that out to you again.” Dakota kissed her grannie on the cheek and moved into the next room. “I love this room and the colors that I’m going to put in here. The thought of having as much color as I want boggles my mind. They did say I could have it painted before I moved in, didn’t they, darling?”

“They did.” Dakota looked out the window that had a lovely view of the gardens beneath. “I do love that you’ll be close to us again. However, I want you to understand, again, that I’m not going to side with either you or Aunt Lisa. If you get into another fight that has you moving to the other side of the country, I won’t speak to either of you. Nor will you be able to have Loren over.

Not that I know where you’d put her in here.” “I’m getting one of those magic beds that she goes on about all the time. I’m to understand that is all you sleep in. A pull-out bed, Dakota, isn’t a place to take a man when you’re in the mood.” To equally embarrass her grannie, she explained how she knew perfectly well how to take care of her own needs. “My goodness. Do you have one of those battery-operated boyfriends that Lisa is going on about?

Dakota. How could you?” “It’s easy, really. I just make sure the batteries are new or have enough life in them to make sure I can get my own batteries charged. You should try it sometimes, Grannie. It might make it, so you’re less tense all the time.” Aunt Lisa came into the room before Grannie could say anything. It was just as well. Aunt Lisa would have surely embarrassed them both.

After kissing her great aunt, she asked her what she thought of Grannie’s new digs. The two of them were twins, but only by birthdate would anyone ever know that. They were as different as night was day. “I’m moving into the one on the third floor. Did you know for a bit more money, you can have two apartments here? I did that. I even put in so that you could have two as well, Vicky. You might need the room if Dakota ever decides to get married again. And Loren can come and stay with us both this way.” Grannie thanked her sister, but Dakota could tell she was miffed that she’d not thought of it first. She asked her great aunt how it worked. “They take the second apartment and make it into three bedrooms. The first apartment then has a larger living room, as well as a dining area outside the kitchen.

I’m going to use one of the bedrooms as my closet. I so love to have all my clothing spread out so I can get to it. What will you do with it, Vicky?” “Well, since I’ve only just discovered I have the extra room, I’ve not made any plans. I don’t know if you realize this or not, but people do not have plans all the time about what they’re going to do at any given moment. Perhaps I’ll have Dakota come and live with me.

Wouldn’t that be a hoot?” Dakota told them both that she wasn’t old enough to live here. The youngest that a person could be was sixty. “Oh yes. But I can have Loren here whenever I wish so long as she’s a good girl. I think they thought of her when the Webster people defined a good girl. She is such a darling.” It would be a nice place for her and Loren to live in, Dakota thought as they sat in the large dining room. She also thought that no one would ever guess this place used to be a school with children eating in this very room. Sometimes, she’d bet, it would be the only hot meal they would get that day.

She and her daughter did struggle, as her grannie had pointed out. Dakota had been married once, and it had been a wonderful marriage. Michael had been a good man, a better friend, and the best father. But his life had been cut short when he’d gone overseas to fight in a war that had not only ravaged the country there but her own life and that of her daughter. “I saw your uncle the other day. He was looking much better than I’ve seen him in a while. I had no idea he was out of the nursing home.” She told her aunt what she knew. “I see. Why do you suppose he didn’t come to us when he needed a little help? I suppose he’s more like you than he is your father.

Is Loren all right with the two of you barely making ends meet?” “She is, actually. We are having a bit of a time with it, but we’ll come out ahead someday, I think.” Grannie and Aunt Lisa told her that they could get her ahead now. “I know you can. And I do appreciate you wanting to help us. But I swear to you, we’re all right. I don’t want to have to take from you all the time. I love that you want to, but you’ll need your money for when you get old.” “Honey, if we get any older, we’re going to be like dried-up old apples.” Grannie sat down at the table while they waited on the people in charge of the apartments that her aunt and Grannie were going to be living in. “I’m finished asking, Dakota. You’re my only grandchild.

You have my only great-grandchild. I’m not going to allow you to put me off any longer.” The people came in, but Grannie wasn’t finished with her just yet. Pulling out her pocketbook, what she forever called her wallet, she pulled out four credit cards and handed them out to her. Dakota didn’t want to take them, but she knew her grannie well enough to know that she’d sit there with them out until she took them. Grannie was all kinds of stubborn.

After Dakota took them from her, Grannie took her arm. “Use them, Dakota. Please. I’ve been carrying those around for months now just to give them to you, and today is the day. I’m going to be coming around more, and I won’t live like I am now when you don’t have two pennies to rub together.” Nodding, she noted that the three people had moved to the other side of the room. “I love you, darling. I will now and forever have you and Loren in my heart and prayers.

Please, I need to help you now while I’m alive. I need to do this for the two of you.” Taking the credit cards that had her name on them, Dakota left her aunt and Grannie to deal with the apartment on their own. Walking to her apartment that she and Loren shared, she was just entering when Loren came home from school. All smiles and hugs, Loren asked if the other two women were settled up yet. “Yes. They’re both going to be living in the School House.

They both are getting two places, so they can have a place for you to spend the night. I’m so happy for them both but also worried that they’ll be fighting again in no time. You know how they can be.” Loren said they were like her. “What is that supposed to mean, young lady? I am not stubborn.” “Sure you’re not. Is it because you’re not stubborn that we could have been paying the bills when they come due instead of eenie meenie miney moe-ing them on which gets paid each month?”

Dakota wanted to cry. She told Loren she was trying to be independent. “Mom, if you got any more independent, we could set up our own country. What is it you’re afraid of? Money? I think it would be nice to have a little once in a while. Don’t you?” “You do realize that I’m the adult, and you’re the ten-year-old?” Loren just smiled at her. “I think your grannie has had enough of my being independent as well. Look what she gave me. Or I should say what she made me take from her today. I don’t want to use them. But as you so delicately pointed out, we’re broke.” “Not broken, Mom, just short.”

Loren laughed and went to her room—the only other room in the tiny apartment besides the bathroom. While she was doing her homework, Dakota sat there thinking about how she’d gotten to the place she was in now. It was a great many things, things she was sure—or at least hopeful—that her older relatives didn’t know about. Dakota wondered what she would have done had Michael not been killed by friendly fire when he pulled out his own gun on a room full of officers after having a mental breakdown. Everyone in the world knew what Michael had done—who he had killed, even.

It was why she couldn’t get a well-paying job. Her husband, and through him, she and Loren was considered a traitor to his country. After dinner was finished and things were cleaned up, Dakota pulled out her bed when Loren declared she was exhausted and got into bed. All evening since she’d been home, Dakota had thought of nothing else but the credit cards. Just to be able to catch up on her rent would have been a wonderful thing. But to use them would make her feel like she was no longer her own woman.

No longer able to afford things for herself and her little girl. The knock at the door startled her, and she stood back from it when she asked who it was. Glancing at the clock, she was surprised by the lateness of the hour as well as the light that shone under the door. Asking again who was there, the person on the other side simply laughed. It was a woman. “My name is Micky Prince. Your grandmother, who I absolutely love, by the way, sent me over here to talk to you. She said I was to tell you that her middle name is the same as your daughter’s and that she’s the most brilliant ten-year-old ever born.

Besides you, she said.” Dakota didn’t say anything. “All right. List two in having you trust me enough to allow me in. Your last electric bill was twenty-seven dollars because you don’t have any lights on unless you’re in the room. Then it’s only long enough to find whatever it is you’re looking for. You dress and undress in the dark. There is only fifty-seven cents in your account until you get another job, which I’m here to offer you. You—” Dakota opened the door. “I have a dollar and twelve cents in my account, thank you very much.”

Micky looked like a model. She had the most beautiful red hair Dakota had ever seen. “What does Grannie want now? I think she’s humiliated me enough, don’t you?” “She said you were beautiful and prideful. Both, to me, aren’t things that are bad things. May I come in? Your landlord is on the steps eavesdropping on us.” The thundering down the stairs made Dakota realize she’d been right about Mr. White. “I’m sure you’re aware of this, but this place is a dump. It should have been torn down decades ago.”

“I’m well aware of my situation, Ms. Prince. But you said my grannie sent you here. Tell me what it is and leave. It’s late, and I have things to do tomorrow.” She repeated that she had a job for her. “I’m not going to take a job that my grannie bullied you into making up for me. And don’t tell me she didn’t do it. She’s very good at making people do what she wants when she sees something she thinks she needs doing. I love her very much, but I’m just fine and dandy.”

“I saw you today when she handed you the credit cards. I told her after you left that I thought she was a rude bitch for doing that in front of us. I wasn’t going to allow her to live in the School House, but she made me realize she needed to be close to you to help. Help you what, I found out later. How long have you been living like this, Dakota?”

Opening the door wider, she found her daughter on the made-up couch. Smiling at the two of them, Loren went to make them both some tea. “She’s as lovely as you are. And I’m betting as stubborn too.” “I am, thanks,” Loren said that they only had two cups and no sugar, then asked Micky if she drank hot tea without lemon or sugar. “I can make two teas, but they’ll be cloudy because the water filter, if there ever was one, was broken before Mom and I moved in. The landlord is a jerk.

He told Mom if she wanted things fixed, she’d have to go out with him. I’m thinking he wants more than that, but then I’m only ten, and my mom thinks I know nothing about sex yet.” “Loren Sullivan. Hush telling this lady thing like that.” But Micky laughed and told Loren she loved an honest kid. “Then you’ll worship her. She has no filter at all and just says whatever she thinks of. Not that she just empties her head, but she can be too blunt.” Dakota looked at Micky. “You’re not human, are you? Did you make me say that to you?”

“No, I’m not human. My husband is a black tiger. I’m…well, magical. I guess it would be safe to call me. And no, I didn’t make you say anything. I did make up the part about knowing the landlord was there.

I was as surprised as you were when he ran down the stairs. He is, as Loren said, a jerk.” ~*~ Micky showed Dakota around. There was a great deal of speculation between the family members on whether or not Dakota was Marcus’s mate. However, in order not to find out, Marcus had taken off for parts unknown until he could get things settled with his home. Not that anyone understood that, as he had a nice home already, but it wasn’t up to her. Dakota seemed overwhelmed by the number of perks she was getting to work at the School House as a manager. “Are you giving me this job because of my grannie and aunt?” Micky told her that was part of it.

“I don’t need charity, Mrs. Prince. I’m doing all right on my own.” “We both know that’s bullshit.” Opening the door to the house she’d be living in until they could find her something closer—if she turned out not to be Marcus’s mate— she showed her the things that were magical that she’d have both here and where she lived when they found something. “The local school is a good one. There is the packed school as well that Loren can attend.

I would suggest sending her there. They’re advanced in the way they teach, and I believe she’ll like it better.” “You know I’m considered a traitor to my country, right? I mean, I want to make that clear right upfront. If I take the job.” Micky said nothing. She knew Dakota was tempted. “What’s really going on here? There is something you’re not telling me. Isn’t there?” “Two things, really. But I want to point something out to you first.

Magic doesn’t come to those that haven’t been accepted into this family. Not that I don’t like you and enjoy being around you—I do. But when we entered this house, you commented on how nice and warm it was. Where is your coat?” She looked around, and Micky continued. “Secondly, the house allowed you in. Not because I’m with you, Dakota, but because I believe it has an idea of who you are to us. All of the Prince family. Mate to Marcus and mistress of this house.” “Mate. To a black tiger.” Micky watched as her mind worked out what she’d just been told. She would never play any games with her like poker or a lying contest. Dakota’s expression never changed. “I was married once. I have a daughter. Whatever this person wants from me, I’m not going to give up my child.” “I should hope not.

Besides, Marcus is in the process of adopting a little girl of his own. She’s four and has been dealt some horrific blows in her short life.” Dakota said she’d read about her in the paper. “Yes, I’m sure you have. But what it didn’t tell you was that she was kidnapped from a hospital when she was about three hours old. Not by the woman currently in jail, but Ronnie became a bargaining chip for Sharon.

The woman who took her had said she was going to call the police on Sharon. I’m not sure of all the details on the deal or how Ronnie became a commodity. But we will find out.” “The little boy, he died, the paper said.” Micky hurt whenever she thought of young Shane. “The paper said his parents had given up on him being found, and it had taken a toll on not only their marriage but their lives as well. They’re both dead. The police are calling it a murder-suicide, but I think it was profound grief that took both their lives.

I don’t know what I’d do if my child were to be taken from me.” “I don’t either, to be honest. His funeral was a few days ago. Ronnie has been staying with Marcus after Tyler, my brother-in-law through marriage, wasn’t able to take her. Something about him not having enough stable time in his life. Which, I suppose, was good for him. Tyler is just now getting his career on track, and he’ll still be able to visit Ronnie whenever he wishes.” Dakota walked around the house without saying much of anything. Micky pointed out some of the things that were magical in the living room.

The large screened television was on a football game, and she was glad to see that Dakota knew who was playing and cheered quietly for the Browns. She wondered who had turned it on when Marcus came out of the kitchen with a sandwich halfway to his mouth. “Marcus, I thought you were going to be out of town.” He just stared at Dakota as Micky asked him why he was there. “You said I could show her around while you weren’t here.” “I thought I’d just come here and meet her. I thought you were coming by tomorrow, or I would have cleaned up.” Micky wanted to laugh at the way the two of them were staring at each other. “I’m Marcus Prince. You must be Victoria.”

“My name is Victoria too. But everyone calls me Ronnie. You’re very pretty.” All three of them turned to Ronnie, who she’d not noticed before now. She was sitting backward on the couch, facing the three of them. “We’re just hanging out here. I’ve never hung out before, have you?” “Yes. With my daughter. She’s ten, and her name is Loren Victoria. She’s named after my grannie.” Ronnie asked if she was going to be coming over soon. “I don’t know. She’s with my grannie helping her move some of her things around in her new place.” While the three of them seemed to be getting to know each other, Micky reached out to Marcus to ask him if she was his mate.

After a glare at her, she knew she had her answer and was excited about it. You knew she was going to be when it was first mentioned to you that she was single. Micky told him she’d only hoped so. She is. When will I meet her daughter? I’m assuming you have that planned out as well. I don’t, actually. But I can have her brought here. I think this would be a good time too, don’t you? Marcus sat down on the couch with Ronnie as Dakota stood where she’d been when he’d joined them in the living room. She’s terrified.

I don’t know about what, but she is. Can you tell? No. Her mind is chaotic like she has a million things going on at one time. Micky thought it was time that she left and started for the door. Wait. She’s worse now that you’re leaving. Just give me a few minutes to figure out what has her so afraid. Micky sat down on the other couch and invited Dakota to do the same. When she sat by her, Ronnie came to sit with her. When she reached for Dakota’s hand, Micky could see that it mellowed her to the point where she could see a little into her mind.

She’s afraid because of what she’s been called. Dakota can’t take another hit to her heart. She’s been hurt by a great deal by people, hasn’t she? Marcus said she had, but no one here in this town. Good. I’d hate to have to kill someone for hurting either of them. I’m going to contact someone to bring Loren here. Perhaps her grannie too. It’ll be strange for you, I’m thinking, to know that you’re older by far than her grannie is. Thanks. Why don’t you have everyone come over here for dinner tonight?

She might as well get used to all of us right off the bat. She asked him if he thought that was a good idea. I do. She’s starved for family and has it in her head that she’ll never have that. More importantly, that she’ll never have that for her daughter. When she said she was going to go get her daughter and Grannie, Dakota seemed to be all right with her leaving this time. Getting into her car, she squeaked when Bubble appeared on her steering wheel. “They’ll need faeries. You should also be aware that Ms. Lisa is aware of us and that we’re around. When Colors showed up to see what she was doing to the rooms, Ms. Lisa began talking to him the moment he arrived.

Do we know why?” Micky said she’d only spoken to the other woman once. “Colors has been changing the room to suit the elderly woman. She has a way with bright colors like Lady Grannie does.” Pulling up in front of the school, Micky noticed two moving trucks out front. They’d rented all but two of the fifty-three rooms, and she was happy for that. It turned out well for those staying there. However, she thought she’d have to find someone else to manage it, as she thought Dakota would be busy from now on. Her cell phone was ringing when she put in the code to enter the building.

“This is Dakota Sullivan. I didn’t have a cell phone before this, and I found one in my pocket when I was thinking of calling you. Not only that but your number and picture appeared there like I would call you. More magic?” Micky said it was. “All right. I want you to know I’m terrified out of my mind right now. The phone isn’t the only thing freaking me out. The house is moving.” “I’m sorry. I should have explained more of what was going on. Is Marcus helping you?” She said he was being really nice. “He is a nice guy.

I’m here at your grannie’s place now. Is there anything I need to tell Loren to have her come with me?” The pause had her thinking she didn’t quite trust any of this yet. Her either. “We’re not going to hurt you, Dakota. I promise you. We’ll do everything within our power to make sure you’re safe and secure.” “That’s what Marcus said. You guys can do whatever you want to me, but don’t hurt my family. They’re all I have in the world.” Micky told her they had them as well. “I’m not going down that rabbit hole just yet.

Loren will come with you if Grannie does. Are you bringing Aunt Lisa as well?” “If you think she’ll come.” Dakota just laughed, then seemed to catch herself. “I’m sorry this is too much for you, Dakota. I don’t know if it will be any better for you after tonight, but I can assure you that you’re in good hands now.” “Thank you,” Micky asked her why she was going to call her. “Oh. I’ll take the job. I’ve been told no less than ten times that I won’t have to work, but I want to. I want to make a difference in myself. So if you’re sure, I’ll take the job.”

“Good. I’m going to bring your family over to the house, and we’ll have the family over for dinner. Did Marcus tell you that they’re all tigers?” She said he had and that they were very loud. “They are. However, my family has them beat. You’ll love us all. Just as much as we’ll love you, Dakota.” Grannie, as she was asked to call her, was more than willing to go and meet her family. She didn’t tell her much about what Dakota was to them, but she did tell the woman that Dakota was taking the job. When Loren came out of the second apartment that was just bedrooms for the place, Micky was blown away by how much she looked like her great-grandma.

Being side by side like they were now, they could have been twins if they’d been the same age. Then she saw the picture of Grannie when she’d been twelve. “My goodness. You look so much alike. I’d think you were the same person. You’re both so beautiful.” Loren thanked her, but she was embarrassed at the praise. She was sure Dakota would have been, too, if she had said the same to her. “I’m taking you both to Marcus’s home for dinner.

Do you think Ms. Bishop will come as well?” “She’d be very upset if we didn’t invite her even if she were to turn us down. By the way, I’m thinking this place has some kind of magical spell around it. I swear to you, my walls changed colors the moment I thought of it.” Micky asked her when that had happened. “About an hour ago. Nothing changed before that.” “About the time that Marcus and Dakota met.” Grannie didn’t say anything, but she did look at her hard. “I’ll explain once we’re on the way.” Loren said she’d go get her aunt, and that was when Micky told Grannie about Marcus and Dakota.

About how the magic came to both her and Lisa and, more than likely, Loren the moment they acknowledged one another. Grannie had no questions or comments, so they loaded up in the car and made their way back to where Dakota and Marcus were. Micky could see that some of the family had shown up already. This was going to be epic. She didn’t know why, but she thought that Dakota laying low as she seemed to be, wasn’t her usual way of doing things. Nope, she was going to set things to right sooner or later.

Harley loved the other woman, and Lisa and Grannie were fun to watch. The two of them bickered like two people that loved each other very much but still didn’t find each other to be very much fun to be around. Dinner was steaks on the grill, one of his favorite meals, as well as all the trimmings. Loren was getting along well with the other kids, and Ronnie didn’t leave Loren’s side once. He was impressed that the older girl didn’t get irritated with Ronnie but allowed her to hold her hand whenever she needed it. Both of them seemed to need it a great deal. “I was wondering something.

Perhaps you’re the one to ask. This thing that’s between my grandniece and Marcus—is it permanent, or will he break it off with her once he finds out he doesn’t want a child from another man? Or some bullshit like that.” Harley explained to Lisa that Ronnie wasn’t his child, but he loved her. “Yes, I can see that he does. The family does as well, don’t they? But Dakota has had enough pain for several lifetimes.

The town where my sister and I lived, they treated her and my Loren like they’d sold off secrets that the world needed. If they had taken care of Michael when he first got sick over there, he might well have had a better time of it. The way it turned out, he shot up a bunch of people that should very well have taken care of him rather than patch him up and send him back out to kill. He wasn’t cut out to murder, poor man. Not much of a husband either, but he loved Loren and Victoria with all he had. I could forget most anything if he loved her like that.” “He’ll love her more. Marcus will also make sure they never have to do without again.

Nor will anyone, and I mean no one, make her feel bad for something ever again. We all will make sure of that. You can bank on my word on that.” She eyed him. “Lisa, we’re all very old and very powerful black tigers. On my oath that I promised Lady Aurora of the Earth and Faeries, we will take care of the four of you as if you were born to us, and you are as much a blood relative as my parents are to us.” “All right. I will trust you with her heart. And that of Loren. She seems to like you all, so I’ll trust her decision on this.”

Harley knew there was more to her not trusting them, but he wouldn’t look for now. “Young man, you said you were old. I’m thinking you’re a few years older than my sister and I. Am I correct?” “No.” She nodded as if she had thought they weren’t that old. “I’m thousands of thousands of years older than you and your sister combined. We were born in a time when there were few people around. This world was only just being discovered. My family is the first of the black tigers, made magical so that we could go around and slowly populate the world with our kind. We were here when your entire lineage wasn’t even a speck in anyone’s universe. With our age comes great magic. More powerful than any other creature born, made, or created other than the lady of the earth.” “Oh my goodness.”

The magic touched his back, and he knew that Aurora had arrived. Without turning, he introduced the beautiful queen to the newest family members, including Ronnie, who stood just behind Marcus. “You’re real, aren’t you? You’re here and alive.” “I am, Lady Lisa. I am happy to see that you and your sister have done so well. I’m equally happy that you’re a part of my family of kittens.

It is very good to see you both again.” Dakota asked her aunt how she knew the queen. “We met a very long time ago, child.’ Before your father was born, even before your grannie met and married her Duke.” ~*~ Marcus watched the two older women while they spoke of the time they met Aurora. He’d not ever heard the story before, and apparently, neither had Dakota and her daughter. As they told the tale, he watched his mate. She was the most beautiful woman and had the most straight face of anyone he’d ever encountered.

“The two of us had escaped our nanny. Back then, we were always in and out of trouble.” Lisa pointed out that they were still in and out of trouble. “Very true. Less now that we can’t run off when we’re about to be caught, but we still have a good deal of fun.”

“You had a nanny, Grannie?” Vicky laughed and told Loren that was the thing back when there was money to be wasted. “My goodness. I never thought of you being a little girl. I don’t mean to sound stupid, but you’ve always been old to me.” “Thank you, darling. We’ll talk about how you shouldn’t say things like that to older people later. Anyway, we’d escaped and were in the yard playing. It was much too close to dark for us to have been out, but there we were, enjoying our freedom as if it would be the last.”

Lisa added that it was the last too. “Yes, we were both so terrified after that it was seldom that we ever wished to visit the yard again.” “The two of them were near the woods that surrounded their home. There were all sorts of creatures that kept an eye on the two of them, but one of the faeries that had been sent to watch them had been…well, she’d been murdered before she could warn anyone to come and help her. There was a great bear out there. He was old and cranky, but there wasn’t any reason for him to have done what he did to them.” Dakota asked Aurora what he’d done. It was Grannie that said he’d killed them both. “Yes. He had killed them both by breaking Lisa’s neck, then tearing out the throat of Vicky.”

“I don’t understand. If he killed them, how are they here now?” Aurora looked at Dakota and smiled. Marcus had a feeling he knew the answer to the question, but he wasn’t sure he should say. “Do you know? Why are they both here, unharmed, if the bear killed them? Please, tell me.” “Aurora saved them because your grannie was meant to have a son, so you would be born to come to me.” Aurora nodded. “And in that, you were to have a daughter that we could both raise with Ronnie. I don’t think Ronnie being a Victoria is a coincidence either, is it? “ Aurora shook her head. “This is all too strange.” Vicky looked at Aurora as she continued. “You never told us that part.

For the longest time, I thought we’d just dreamed it. A horrific dream, but that it wasn’t real.” Marcus asked Vicky what had made her realize it was true. “When Lisa had the same dream I had. Even the feeling of having died. We ended up back in our bedroom that very night. Our gowns had been changed, and we were just in our beds. I never wanted to believe any of it until just this moment.” “I needed you both, you see. You for Dakota, as Marcus said. And Lisa to keep you going. I know there were many times when you wished to give up.

To not go on after your husband died. Then your son dying the way he did nearly did you both in.” Aurora laughed. “Did you ever notice that Lisa would come around when you were at your lowest? That she’d bully you into an argument, and you’d feel better afterwards? I gave her the nudge to be there.”

“So my life has been manipulated since birth,” Aurora told Dakota it was more than that. “I don’t see how. You’ve already told me that you’ve kept my grandmother and her sister alive for me to be born. For what reason? So I could be mated to one of your kittens? If that’s not manipulation, I have no idea what it would be called.” “There are four children that need the two of you. If you had not been alive, Dakota, your daughter would not have come to you. And these four children would surely die.” Dakota looked at Marcus, asking if he knew about this. He told her he didn’t. “No one knew, my child. But I assure you, it was for the betterment of all of you.

You have a purpose in Marcus’s life, and he in yours. Not just the children but other children as well. They will not survive without you.” “Don’t blackmail me,” Aurora said that hadn’t been what she meant. “I don’t like any of this. I’ll help with the children, but I want you to know I’m not at all happy with you right now. I’m happy that you saved my grannie and aunt, but the rest of this? I don’t know what to think. Nor do I have anything else to say to you at the moment.”

“I understand. But the children, they are going to need you more than I can explain to you, Dakota. Also Loren. They’re coming soon. I do hope you’re going to take them on with an open mind and heart and not hold what I’ve made you feel against them.” She said she’d never do that to a child. “No, you wouldn’t. All right. I must return to the castle. I’m so very sorry I’ve wounded you, Dakota.

I do hope in time that you can forgive me for the intrusion into your life.” After she left, Marcus asked Dakota if she was all right. Without an answer, she left the room. Marcus looked at his mom and asked her what he was supposed to do now. “Nothing. Just let her think on this. However, you will need to be more than honest with her about things. I’m not sure why that thought has come to me, son, but answer her questions as directly as you would any of your family. She will not tolerate half-truths.”

He nodded. “Also, I think you should spend some time with Loren. When her mother left, she followed her, but I have a feeling she’s not going to be as easy to talk to as her mom. She, too, has been hurt by things we don’t know about.” After his family left, Marcus thought about the things that had happened to bring him his mate. He wasn’t sure, but he thought he would be pissed as well if he were in Dakota’s shoes. He wasn’t.

Marcus had his mate and two children, with four more on the way. Whatever came around about this, he was going to be the best husband and father he could be. If she’d let him. “My mom wants me to leave her alone for a little while. She told me to come in here.” Marcus asked if she was all right. “No. Would you be?” He said he’d not.

“I don’t know what to think about this. But when she’s not happy, neither am I.” “That’s as it should be.” He turned the football game up when she asked him to, and Ronnie sat down between the two of them. He had no idea what was going to happen next, but he was going to be there for them even if they didn’t want him to be. Marcus already loved his little family, and he was going to do his best to make sure they were happy.

Quincy Bishop’s Snowy Leap Release Blitz & Giveaway

Quincy watched the woman move through the crowd. He couldn’t put his finger on it, but something just felt off. She was too close to the man in front of her not to be with him. When the man purposefully stepped out in front of an oncoming truck, it was all Quincy could do to stop her from the same fate. She was deaf. Her scent was familiar, but she wasn’t his mate.

Grace was upset with Quincy but didn’t know why. She was thankful that he saved her sister, but she felt pissy and needed to take it out on someone, and he made a good target. But when he didn’t retaliate, she regretted her actions.

It didn’t take but a second for Quincy to figure out that Grace was his mate. But would she be as happy about it as he was? Only time would tell….

AMAZON USA https://amzn.to/37oZQil
AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/3ObgEtP
AMAZON AU https://amzn.to/3xvcK9h
B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/quincy-kathi-s-barton/1141352517?ean=2940160888392
GOOGLE PLAY https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kathi_S_Barton_Quincy?id=215qEAAAQBAJ
SMASHWORDS https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1142302
KOBO https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/quincy-11
ITUNES http://books.apple.com/us/book/id1619135040
PAPERBACK https://amzn.to/37ZdxVq

Add it to your booklist…
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/60806936-quincy

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is sawyer-453x680-1.jpg

Raven Addington was happy with her life the way it was. She and her daughter, Molly, were doing just fine on their own, despite what her mother had to say about it. Merriam, Raven’s mother, never had anything nice to say about anything, so why should now be any different.

Sawyer Bishop had turned in his notice at the police force. No matter how bad he needed the money, he wasn’t about to let a hot-headed partner make him a mark for an early grave. His parents needed his help on the farm, so he was happy to leave the force.

Sawyer was supposed to be on desk duty, but they were shorthanded, so he took the call that came in from the 911 dispatch. It would be his last, and then he would be a poor but free man.

When Sawyer arrived on the scene, it was bad. The poor woman had been beaten until she was unrecognizable and barely breathing. Although he didn’t know her personally, he knew Raven Addington was extremely wealthy, and that bothered him more than he cared to admit. Being a Bengal tiger, he knew from her scent that she was his mate. Her station in life was so far above his, he didn’t think it was going to work. But when she coded in the hospital, he had to make a quick decision and hope it wouldn’t come back to bite him in the ass later.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is chandler-453x680.jpg




Sasha Harvard had returned to the small town in Ohio because Hailey Riddle, a ghost, had led her there. Sasha had been speaking to the dead for as long as she could remember. In working with the police, Sasha had been in the field, helping to look for Melinda’s spirit when Melinda Havard had found her. Melinda told her that they were sisters, and the man that had killed her thought that she was Sasha. Melinda had done the best she could to deliver the child she was carrying before she succumbed to her wounds. The child was marked like Sasha, and the dead would find her when she was older. Melinda wanted Sasha to raise her child, and she warned Sasha that the man who had killed her would come after both her and the child because of what they could do. Sasha pulled out the business card of Sawyer Bishop, the officer in charge on the field, and told him that she’d like to meet him at his house and to send someone to pick her up.

Chandler Bishop knocked on Sasha’s door to pick her up. He heard a scuffle inside and broke down the door. A man was standing over Sasha with a baseball bat, and she had been beaten. When Chandler yelled at the man, he just disappeared. Sasha was shocked that he’d seen the man. Chandler thought the man was a vampire, Sasha told him the man was dead.

Chandler had found his mate and could see the dead now too apparently. And the little girl, Pip, her niece, would be theirs as well. A readymade family and he couldn’t be happier. But would he and his tiger be able to keep them safe from both the living and the dead?

the living and the dead?

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is wesley-453x680-1.jpg

Wesley Bishop was helping out a friend by letting Emmie stay with him. He knew she wasn’t his mate, but she was good company. Emmie was hiding from her abusive brothers. When she asked Wesley to take her to the bank, she was meeting her best friend Penny and Penny’s grandfather, Joe, to go over their accounts, Wesley readily agreed.

Wesley thought Penny was about the prettiest woman he’d ever seen—feisty too, and when her scent hit him like a freight train, he was the happiest tiger shifter on the planet.

Penny, not so much. Like Emmie, Penny’s family had a way of getting their point across with a heavy fist. Trusting a man wasn’t easy for her.

Wesley was no quitter; he’d convince his new mate to trust him if it was the last thing he did. And keeping her safe was proving to be more difficult by the day.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is gunner-453x680-1.jpg

It would take Hodge time to get used to Gunner’s family. She’d used a little magic to help Raven deliver her twins without any pain. The Bishops were crowding her, wanting answers Hodge wasn’t ready to give. She was a loner, and all these people around her would take some getting used to. Gunner felt the same way and told his family to just go home. His mom wasn’t too happy about that.

To the world, Gunner was retired from his service with the military, but he was too good at his job to just stop. Someone had placed a price on Gunner’s head. He just had to figure out who. They’d come close once, but Hodge had sensed the threat and took care of it. But more attempts were inevitable. Would Hodge be able to intervene the next time?

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is dwayne-rev-1800x2700.jpg
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 70241-synopsis.jpg

Brittany Handle was doing the best she could. She had just gotten out of a violently abusive relationship, and she was doing her best to get her business rolling. Having heard her sister died, she and her son, Jamie, went to Ohio to settle her sister’s affairs.
Dwayne Bishop was settling into his new job at Addington. The owner was grooming him to take over when she retired. He was walking back to his office when Jamie literally barreled into him. The boy was being chased by three bullies. He had given as good as he got until one of them had hit him in the head with a baseball bat. Dwayne stepped in and protected the boy. Once back at his office, the boy was hurt worse than Dwayne thought and collapsed. Panicking, Dwayne reaches out to his family for help.
Brit was doing her best to keep her shit together. Everyone kept saying it was bad, but she hadn’t seen Jamie yet, and until she did, she was doing her best to keep from snapping at everyone. But when Dwayne handed her what Jamie had had in his pocket, the jolt nearly knocked her off her chair. They were mates! She had just got out of one abusive relationship. There was no way she was bowing down to any man ever again….






Sawyer https://amzn.to/31RAKBo
Chandler https://amzn.to/38w7ouj
WESLEY https://amzn.to/3kzaLXU
Gunner https://amzn.to/3i8cUK6
DWAYNE https://amzn.to/3juCAl5

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 4c99c-22188-images2b252812529.jpg

Please make sure you put all the  Info in  for a chance at winning A Signed Mystery Paperback or a Signed Coloring Book,
Tea Totaler, Signed Book Cover Tote or T-Shirt & Tote Bag Exlarge Only


https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeW1YKjLULnu7B7M4tlxYyvErItxTLIIUvlGrlJFi9t5MQR9w/viewform

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is new-prizes.png
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ab532-winners.jpg

Congratulations to the winners !!!!!!!
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote

Packages will be mailed out on
Saturday, April 16th,2022

Pauline Westberry Mystery Prize
Wendy Bricker Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Mystery Prize
Barbara White Signed Paperback
Shannon Vidak Mystery Prize
Rhonda Hicks Signed Paperback
Donna Chizewsky Signed Coloring Book
Trista Wagner Mystery Prize
Ann Ivey Signed Paperback
Joyce Mirabello Signed Paperback
Debbie Whitley Signed Paperback
Brenda Lukas-Jones Signed Paperback
Elizabeth Bardorf Signed Paperback
Jessica Spink Signed Coloring Book
Julie A Swaney T-Shirt and Tote
Linda Brashears Signed Paperback
Tracy Kolberg Tea Totaler
Joyce Estelle T-Shirt and Tote

If you have not gotten your prize
please contact my PA Denise at denisek0319@gmail.com

Happy Reading,

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is cropped-cropped-a929a-e812d-03kathisbartonlogotransparent.png

Prologue


Quincey moved to the middle of the pack. He supposed it was rude of him to call people, mostly humans, a pack, but to his way of thinking, saying it out loud and thinking it were two different things. Thinking things about people was what got him through the worst kind of patients. The light that told them when to walk was still red, but something just wasn’t right about the man and woman in front of him. He could tell they weren’t together if the glares the man was giving the woman were any indication.

Not to mention, he told her several times to get out of his space. Not that it did him any good—she never moved out of her place right behind him. Quincey saw the big truck coming down the road. It had been the safest and the quickest construction route for the new building going in on one of the properties they all owned. Even as he was thinking this was going to end badly, the man moved. Then the woman did. Grabbing her back from following the man, he was driven to the sidewalk by her turning on him.

Leaping up, he grabbed her again and buried her face into his chest to keep her from the horrors of what had just happened. She was still fighting for freedom as everyone around them backed from the dead man’s body and the truck that had ended his life. “I have you.” She fought free of him and then began signing at him. Putting his hands over hers, he stopped her, but only long enough for him to sign back to her that she needed to slow down.

“It’s been a while. I’m a little rusty. I didn’t want you to follow the man into moving traffic.” She turned then, looking where the rest of the people were looking. When she turned back to him, she thanked him as only a deaf person could. Her fingers to her chin, then pointing them toward him. Having her settled, he went to the man lying broken on the road. Even though he could see that his back was broken, as was his neck, Quincey tried his pulse on what was left of his throat. He was able to pronounce him dead. He then reached for his brother. There’s been an accident/suicide on Main Street, Sawyer. Could you please send help? He asked if anyone else was hurt.

No. Just the man. The truck driver couldn’t have stopped in time if he had seen the man. Whoever he was, he timed it perfectly to step in front of the truck and end his life. I’m on my way. I’ve called an ambulance too. He thanked his brother. You were there, I’m assuming. Are you sure he wasn’t pushed? Positive. There is a deaf woman here too. I managed to keep her from moving into the same accident. I think she was using him as a reference as to when she could cross the street. The woman was upset—anyone within two inches of her could tell that. Going to her, Quincey was careful to wipe the man’s blood from his hand as he got closer. He didn’t want to frighten her any more than she already was. When she looked up at him, he could also see fear there. Assuring her that she wasn’t going to be in trouble had her smacking his forehead.

“You’re very violent, aren’t you?” She told him to fuck off. “Rude. I was just going to let you know that the police are on their way and that my brother knows you weren’t involved.” Quincey had to think about some of the words he was signing to her, and when she laughed, not a sound moving past her upturned mouth, he grinned back at her. He explained to her that he hadn’t used ASL for a while. “I had no idea he was going to get hurt when he moved.” Quincey explained to her that he thought the man had committed suicide. And had she followed him, she would have been killed too. “I can’t hear the clicking.

There were too many people for me to see the other side, or this one, to tell me when I could walk.” “You’re fine now, so that’s all that matters, right?” She nodded and looked to his right. Turning that way as well, he saw Sawyer get out of his truck and walk toward him. “That’s my older brother. He’s the acting sheriff here until they find someone to replace him. He knows ASL too.” ASL, or the American Sign Language, had been something he’d been taught by his mom. All of them had been when she homeschooled them. Mom had learned it from her aunt, who was born deaf. It had, over the years, come in handy when he had to speak to someone that couldn’t hear.

Sawyer seemed to be doing all right now that he’d told her that he, too, was a little rusty, so Quincey started away. When his hand was grabbed, he turned back to the woman and said he wasn’t going to leave her. He needed to talk to the coroner. “Her name is Beth Stone. She’s new here in town to teach ASL to the staff at the hospital. Did you know anything about that?” He told Sawyer he no longer read the emails at the hospital, as they were stupid. “Be that as it may, could you check on it for me? Not that I don’t believe her, but she has literally only just arrived and hasn’t had a chance to figure out where they’re putting her while here.”

“Yes, I can do that.” Pulling out his cell phone, it didn’t bother him in the least that Beth was still holding onto him. Asking for the department that scheduled classes for the staff, he wasn’t just told about the woman, Beth, but was also told that she was late. “She’s been involved in an accident. She’s not injured or a part of it, but she was a witness to it.” “Is this the body that is coming to us soon, Doctor Bishop?” He told her he’d pronounced him dead at the scene and that he would be in later to sign the death certificate for him. “Thank you, sir. I’ll make sure I tell the others what has happened to her.

Also, if you’d not mind, when you come, I’d like you to take her housing information so she may have it. I’m to understand she’s deaf.” “Yes, she is.” There wasn’t anything more that he wanted to add to the conversation, so he closed his phone. Turning to Sawyer, he found himself alone again with Beth. She asked him what was going on. He explained to her what was happening with the hospital. “Thank you. To be honest with you, I’d forgotten about getting in touch with them.” She looked at her hand on his shirt but only released him long enough to sign. “You must think I’m a loony, holding you like this. But it anchors me.”

“I don’t think that at all. You’ve had something traumatic happen near you, and it’s understandable that you’re upset and need to anchor yourself.” Something occurred to him in that moment, and he felt his heart rate pick up. “Beth, are you seeing anyone? Married or something like that? I mean, do you have someone in your life right now?” “Why? Has someone contacted you? Did someone contact you to get in touch with me?” He said he didn’t know who she was, but no, no one had. “Then why do you care if I’m with someone or not?” “I’m a shifter. White Bengal tiger. Do you know anything about shifters?” She said she knew a great many shifters, but sadly, no tigers. “Yes, well, I’d have to figure it out, but I’m thinking the reason you feel so comfortable around me, and me you, is that you might be my mate. I’d have to get closer to you to find out.”

“How close?” He told her. “All right. You can sniff me. But nothing else. I know you won’t hurt me, or you would have already, but just don’t get too fresh with me.” Burying his nose into her neck, he knew immediately that she wasn’t his mate, but she had been around someone that might be. Instead of asking her who it was, he just told her she wasn’t, but that he was here for her. “I thank you for that. I know a few shifters, as I said. And a man that is a wolf nearly married the wrong woman when it was her mother all the time he was smelling on her. He didn’t realize it until the day of the wedding.” He told Beth that was something he’d been thinking too. Then asked her if she had anyone.

“Mom was in an asylum for the criminally insane until she killed herself. Mom killed my dad, sister, and brother, and a bunch of other people one night. It was much more than her putting a bullet in their heads. She— Well, that’s one you’ll have to look up on your own. Melody Stone. Five years ago.” “I’ll look into that. No one else then?” She smiled at him and told him she had two sisters, one younger, the other older. “I’m assuming they don’t live around here. If not, then I don’t think it could be them. This person you would have had contact with recently.” “Both of them do, as a matter of fact.” He smiled at her and said he might be better off letting it go.

“Doubtful you could survive that, Doctor Bishop.” “Doubtful that either one of them would want to attach themselves to a country doctor with no chance of moving on to something more. Not that I want that, but I’m not all that much where a woman would fall over herself for me.” She told him to behave, then the police asked to speak to her. Since Sawyer was working for the department, he let him take care of translating for her. However, he didn’t leave her side. She needed protection as much as his tiger did, he thought.

She was tough and seemed to be able to defend herself. Watching her as she answered their questions, he thought about her family as he looked it up on his phone. Melody Stone had made the front page in every newspaper around the world, it looked like. She’d killed not only two of her children but her husband, his mother, sister, brother, as well as a mailman, two men who picked up the trash, and two officers when they had tried to arrest her. Melody had, according to the report he was reading, just simply snapped one day.

After reading the accounting of what had happened to the people she had killed in her home, Quincey shivered. The only reason Beth and Joanie had been able to live was that they’d hidden in the basement. Hearing the screams of their mother’s victims, as well as the laughter from her the entire three days they’d been trapped with no way out, had been a lot to endure, the author of the article had written. Just as he was finishing the article, he was touched on the arm by someone. Looking at Beth, he asked her if she was all right. She asked him to call her sisters and that she’d buy him lunch. “I’ll call them for you, but you don’t have to buy me lunch, Beth.

I was joking when I said I was nothing but a country doctor. I have other means of making money.” She said she figured that but still wanted to have lunch with him. “All right. But I’ll buy. It’s a manly thing to do.” The place across the street from his office served a really good French dip sandwich. He ordered that, as well as a cup of their vegetable soup to go with it. Beth wanted the same, but instead of water, she wanted tea. Writing down the numbers after the server left, Quincey wondered what he was getting himself into. As soon as the phone was answered by someone cursing, he knew this person was going to be his mate. “My name is Quincey Bishop.

I was—” She told him she didn’t know him. “I’m aware of that, Ms. Stone, but your sister is here with me, and she’s—” “Is she hurt? I told her to take one of us with her. Damn it. Did you hurt her?” He said he’d not. “Well? What the hell are you doing with my little sister then? I’m telling you right now, you’re not going to get away with—” “Will you calm the fuck down for a minute and let me finish telling you the reason I called you?” No apology came from her end, but he was just pissy enough to let it go for now. “She was witness to an accident that claimed the life of a young man. She wasn’t involved or injured, but she’s understandably shook up. However, why she would think you’d be a comfort to her is beyond me.

We’re at the Dixie Restaurant on Main Street.” Closing the phone, he didn’t want to tell Beth what had happened, but she asked, so he told her the one that had answered the phone was a rude bitch. Beth smiled and told him it could have been either of her sisters. Neither of them were good with people. They ate their lunch and spoke about her job. He’d not been as excited about his job as she was about hers in a long time, he realized. Of course, she was just beginning hers, and he’d been a doctor for nearly eight years.

Christ, he thought, that was a long time. When two women sat down with them, just barged into their lunch, he watched the conversation the two of them were having with Beth. They were pissed. Not at her, but that she’d not called them right away. Beth told them both to fuck off and that she was a grown woman. That got him laughing, and the two newcomers glared at him. “You two are a great deal alike. I’m assuming you, boss everyone, around when you feel you’re in the right.” He spoke to the other two and signed for Beth to understand him. “I told you she was fine, yet there you are checking her out like she was some sort of kid you have to boss—” One of them told him it was none of his business. Quincey slammed his hands on the table and spoke again. “Stop interrupting me when I’m speaking. You’ve done that so many times I can only assume you’re used to people letting you ride all over them.

Well, I’m not going to allow you to beat up on her or me. So you can either calm the fuck down, or you can just get the hell out of here. Beth and I were having a nice lunch until you two arrived.” Neither of them said another word to him or Beth. When the server arrived, he asked them if they needed a menu. They both agreed to have whatever Beth was having. When the server walked away, he knew the woman talking was the one who had answered the phone. “I’m sorry. I’m not good around people. My name is Grace. My sister is Joanie. You’ve been really nice by taking care of Beth, so she wasn’t too traumatized, and we all appreciate that.” He told Grace it was his pleasure. “Thank you for that. And you were in the right when you yelled at us. Now and on the phone. We came here on a whim for Beth, and I’ve not had any luck getting things squared away for us to live here with her.”

“What sort of issues are you having? I’m assuming it’s housing.” She told him that was it. “Buying or renting? The reason I ask is that my family has both sitting empty right now.” “Buying. But you don’t have to go to any trouble for us. We’ll get it settled up.” Joanie told her to shut up and let him help. He noticed they were doing the same thing he’d been doing, speaking and using sign language so that Beth could be a part of everything. “All right. We’ll take your help. But you don’t have to go out of your way and make your family—” This time it was Beth that put her hand over her sister’s mouth.

She told him she’d take all the help he wanted to give them. She wasn’t as stubborn or as stupid as her sisters. Quincey laughed and called his brother Gunner. He knew he had several properties around town and could help these women out. Putting the phone on speaker when he asked his brother if it was all right, he explained who he was with as well as what they needed. He signed the conversation to Beth. ~*~ “I don’t understand. What do you mean he thinks one of us is his mate? I’m not going to settle down with someone that has to love me. No way.” Grace looked at Beth as they spoke. “You have to have that wrong. He never said a word about it.”

“Perhaps because you were so caustic to him the entire time he was trying to have lunch with me. You do understand that I’m an adult, the same as you and Joanie are, don’t you? I mean, I voted in the last election. I get to make my own money. All kinds of stuff.” She told her sister to be nice. “No, I won’t be nice to you. He was the perfect gentleman, despite the fact that I knocked him to the ground when he saved me from following that man into traffic. I hope he’s not either of your mates. I’m positive he can do so much better than you guys.”

After her sister left her, she stared at the work she’d been doing when the call had come in. Not that she didn’t know each and every line she’d drawn. Standing up, she stood over the drawing without seeing it anymore. All she could think about was how rude and bitchy she’d been to Quincey. Both her and Joanie had been. Making a decision, she grabbed her keys and told Joanie where she was going. Joanie asked if she could go as well. All three of them ended up going to find Doctor Bishop. The houses along his street were houses she’d always had an attraction for. The last two houses she’d drawn had been the same sort of antebellum homes.

As soon as his driveway came up, the house sitting far back from the road, she knew this man was a smart businessman. The house, along with the garden out front and the grounds, was well maintained. Getting out of the car, she was shocked to her core when a large white tiger came running at them from the side of the house. The larger-than-life cat stopped not a foot from where she was standing. She looked up at the house when a woman in a white apron asked if she wanted the doctor. “No. Not unless he tries to eat me. I’m assuming this is Quincey Bishop?” The woman laughed and made her way toward them. “I came to talk to him about my behavior earlier today. Is he going to hurt me?” “I’d say not. But he is Doc.

He wants me to tell you that you and your sisters are welcome to go inside the house, but he has to go to the barn to change into clothing. He’ll be naked should he shift right now.” The cat snarled at the woman, who told him to behave himself. “I just baked up some zucchini bread if you’d like some. The garden out back is just plum full of the little suckers.” When the woman turned, heading back to the house, Joanie and Beth joined her. When Grace started to move to join them, the cat blocked her path. After he blocked her twice more, she stood where she was. “I’m assuming you want me to stay here. I can do that. So long as you understand, I’m not going to let you hurt me. Or my sisters.” She thought of what Beth said to her about being mates.

“Am I your mate? I don’t even know if you can understand me or not.” Her cell phone ringing nearly gave her a heart attack. Grace wasn’t sure, but she thought Quincey was laughing at her. Answering the call from Joanie, she was laughing hard enough that it took her two tries to tell her why she’d call at this time. “He said for you to put out your hand so he can nip it. Beth said it wasn’t at all painful, but he can talk to you after he tastes your blood.

I’d do it, Grace. What harm could it do for you to be able to speak to a tiger when you need one?” She didn’t ask her how she thought she’d need him but put out her hand. The lick across her entire palm made her realize he was hiding a lot of teeth from her. When he nipped gently on her hand, she wasn’t hurt at all. Pulling her hand back, noticing that it was still trembling a good deal, she asked him if it had worked. It did. And yes, Grace, you’re my mate. She nodded and looked away. I won’t hurt you or your family. Not ever. I’ll protect them with my life, as I will you.

“I’m not asking for you to do that, Quincey. I’m a little overwhelmed right now.” He told her he was sorry for adding to her stress. “I came here to tell you how sorry I was for snapping at you so much. I’d like to tell you I was having an off day, but I’m snappish to everyone lately. I hate my job. I hate my life, and I just want to crawl into a cave and never come out. Nothing seems to be going right.” Is there anything I can do to help you? Shaking her head, she looked at him. I’ll do whatever you need me to do, Grace. Just tell me what has you overwhelmed. I want to know.

No, that’s not nearly enough. I need to know. “I draw houses. Pretty pictures of them so people can hang them in their homes and be proud of it. However, no one wants to see their house the way it really looks. They want me to make it look like something they’ll never be able to achieve. Not without a great deal of money and about five hundred years.” Quincey asked her if someone was disappointed in what she did for them. “Yes. They’re suing me for drawing a house that looks just like the one they sent me pictures of. No big trees out front, like they thought I’d just know they wanted there.

The broken-down fence wasn’t fixed, and lord have mercy, I should have read their mind and just assumed they’d want the yellow shutters to be black and the house to be white, not pink. I kid you not, Quincey. It’s the ugliest pink you’ve ever seen. But they’re suing me for the house they had in their heads and not what they have.” I can help you with that. I have a great many contacts to look into it for you. Or I could hire you a good attorney if you don’t already have one. She told him he was too nice. Thank you. She laughed when he didn’t tell her she was as well. She knew she’d not been.

But when she pointed it out to him, he stood up. Thinking he was going to attack her or something now that he was growling low in his throat, she bumped her head when he told her to get down behind her car. The car came out of nowhere and slid to a stop not a foot from her own car. Gravel sprayed everywhere and hit her against the back of her legs. Quincey didn’t move from his position, but two men came out of the house then and leaned against the posts. She didn’t have any idea who they might be, but she thought they were much too relaxed compared to Quincey’s fur standing on edge and his stiff stance.

“You need something?” The men came down the stairs from the porch and made their way to the new arrival, sauntering in a slow walk. “I asked you something, Mr. Jacobson. You’ll live longer if you answer me and put that gun away.” “He said it was suicide. That brother of yours, he told the police he’d seen my son jump into the front of that moving truck on purpose. He needs to take that back. Right now.” The sharp noise of a gun going off had her crying out, but she didn’t move when Quincey told her she was all right. “Where is he? Where’s Doc Bishop? I know he lives around here.” “You need to calm down and put that rifle away before you get hurt.” Mr. Jacobson pointed out that he was the one holding the rifle. “You are at that, but that tiger right there is going to kill you if you don’t calm down and put the rifle into your car.

We’ll talk to you then, but not with you waving that thing around like you’ve no idea who or what you’re going to kill with it.” Someone else pulled into the drive, and she was afraid it was reinforcements for Mr. Jacobson. A woman and a man got out of the car and walked toward the elderly man. The woman was dressed in business attire, the man in a suit. The other two men nodded at them when they were next to her car. “It’s William, isn’t it?” The man said he was, then told the woman talking that his son didn’t commit suicide.

“But he did. You know me, William. You know what I can do. I helped you a couple of weeks ago to find the paperwork your wife put up. I showed you what I can do, didn’t I?” “You speak to the dead.” Grace could hear the grief in the other man’s voice. “You got him there with you, Sasha? My son, he with you right now?” “He is, and he wants to speak to you. Are you ready to see him? He’s not able to glamour himself because of him only being dead for a few hours. Are you ready for what he looks like?” He said he wasn’t, but he would like to see him. “All right.” “Oh, Billy. Oh my, Billy. What did they do to you?”

Standing up, she stared at the man. It hurt her heart to see him like this. William went to his knees and asked over and over who had killed him. “You’re all I have in the world, son. Did they take you from me?” “No, Dad. No one took me from you. I did kill myself.” The sobbing was painful to hear. Before she could think what a dangerous thing she was doing, she made her way to the grieving man and took the gun from him. Then she held him to her breast as he cried for his loss. “You’re going to hear a lot of things about me, Dad, and most of them are going to be true. The woman I was seeing, however, is going to tell you the child she is carrying is mine. It’s not. However, if you could see your way to do it, I’d very much like it if you could find someone to care for him. Otherwise, she’ll sell him to someone, and you’ll never see him.” “I’ll raise him myself, Billy.”

Billy told his dad he didn’t want that. He knew his dad had failing health. “You left me, son. I don’t care what others are going to say. You left me here all alone.” “Dad, I was dying anyway. You knew that. The doctor I saw this morning, not Doc Bishop, but the guy I’ve been seeing said my cancer had advanced, and I didn’t have but a few weeks to live. I couldn’t let you do that, go through that again like you did with Mom.” He said he would have.

“I know you would have. I know that, Dad. But I didn’t want you to have to. So I ended it.” William sobbed, his body becoming weaker with each passing moment. When Billy said he had to go, it was all Grace could do not to demand that he stay. When he was gone, she held onto William tightly, knowing some of his grief like her own. “Grace?” She looked up at the man who’d been on the porch. “I’m Wesley, one of Quincey’s brothers. This is Gunner, and Chandler is standing over with his wife, Sasha. Quincey asked us to take you inside, and one of us will drive Mr. Jacobson home. All right?”

“Will he be all right?” Wesley said his dad was going to stay with him tonight and help him with arrangements in the morning. “He’s hurting very badly. I hurt for him.” “We all do. Come on now, honey. Let’s get you into the house, and Quincey said he’d join you in a few minutes.” Being led into the house, she stumbled a couple of times on the way up the stairs. “Steady there. You get hurt, and he’s going to have my head. I’ll get you settled and call your sisters for you.” As soon as she was seated, both her sisters came to sit with her. Grace was numb. She didn’t know what had happened with the man and his son, but she did hurt for them both. Not that she’d not thought the same thing over the years. Her mother had been arrested and put away. Everyone looked at the three of them like they might go off the handle, too, killing any and everyone that got in their way. When Quincey joined them in the living room, he sat across from them. She thought she could really love a man like him.