Thursday, June 30, 2011

After- A Journey of the Twins novel

After- A Journey of the Twins novel
By Janet Durbin

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Have you ever wondered what the world would be like if something created by the government escaped? What if it was a virus, a virus so deadly it killed incredibly fast? So fast that a cure was out of the question. What would you do?

Journey with me to find out how the twins, Shyanne and Drayco, handle the outcome of just such a virus, and how the world around them seems to have fallen back in time to an era before technology, an era where the sword rules.

The twins become separated shortly after the deaths stop. Over time, they begin looking for one another when the longing for family fills them. After they find each other, they learn that someone else is looking for them, as well. The Boss wants Shyanne badly. Why—they don't know—but they're going to find out.

With their animal companion, a genetically altered mountain lion named Drizzle, the twins embark on a cross-country journey. They encounter many obstacles along the way, but the worst is a mercenary named Ruben. He will stop at nothing to accomplish what he is paid to do, even if it involves killing his own men. Unfortunately, he succeeds in getting Shyanne.

Now Drayco must survive his biggest challenge, a challenge filled with pain and suffering, if he is to help his sister survive the Boss.


It took the trio six long days to cross the vast open plains. In that time, they saw no other living being except for some birds flying high in the sky. A few glided lazily on the air currents while others accompanied the riders in shifts, as if giving them an escort. None flew close enough to replenish the dwindling food supplies.
The big animals seen at the beginning of the journey had long since gone. It appeared as if the trio and the flying escorts above were the only living things left on the planet.

Very little conversation transpired throughout most of the travel. Drayco tried on several occasions to get his sister to talk. She refused to say more than a few words, which was just as well since he wasn't in the mood to talk either. Joseph chatted on those occasions he was spoken to, but he also remained silent.

Shyanne avoided the fair-haired man for most of the journey, keeping Drayco between them, or riding ahead. On those occasions where they were forced together, like when they camped for the night, she kept mostly to herself. Drayco felt the steadily worsening effects of needing blood increase when the plains finally surrendered its hold on the world to the trees growing visible on the horizon. He had been feeling the weakness and ache for the last two days, but said nothing to the pair riding with him. They could not resolve the issue. Moreover, he had not wanted to weigh them down with any more worries than they already had.

"Finally!" Shyanne yelled when she sighted the trees. Her mood picked up substantially, as did Joseph's. Drayco wanted to share in their excitement. His body hurt too much to let him.

The waterskins hung limp from the saddles with only a few drops remaining. Because of the shortage, the horses had been rationed along with the people on them. Some kind of water must have been close because they picked up speed as the scent of the badly needed moisture reached their nostrils.

Joseph and Shyanne could barely keep their animals from breaking away. They grinned, winked at each other, and finally gave in, letting the animals run.

Drayco smiled as he watched the others bridge the gap between the open field and the trees ahead. With a slight prod, Bravaro leapt to follow. A few feet into the run, however, Drayco was hit with an intense pain in his abdominal region. It forced him to double over and grasp a handful of mane to stay in the saddle. Sweat broke out on his forehead; it ran into his eyes, causing them to sting, adding more insult to an already abused body. He grimaced as another wave more intense than the first hit him. This time, he wasn't able to stay in the saddle.

Bravaro was running at a brisk pace when Drayco's grip finally gave way. He fell sideways off the horse and hit the ground, hard. His right shoulder dislocated with the impact, and the back of his head bounced a couple of times while he rolled like a broken rag doll on the grassy plain. He vaguely noticed the new pains due to the other pain still holding him in a vice grip, refusing to give up its hold. When he finally stopped rolling, he was face down on the ground. His right shoulder was at an awkward angle and he couldn't catch
his breath.

* * * *

Shyanne made it to the edge of the woods and pulled Jack around, halting his mad dash across the open area. A wide smile covered her face; it was the first one in many days. Joseph pulled his horse up beside her, laughing. "You should see yourself. It's hilarious the way your hair is sticking out. It makes you look like a giant sunflower."

Shyanne laughed. "You should see yourself, mister." Pushing her hair down, she glanced back to see how her brother fared. Her face changed in an instant. Where joy and pleasure had glowed over every inch of her, fear and dread replaced it.


She was looking over Joseph's shoulder in the direction they had just come. He turned in the saddle and saw Bravaro running their way, riderless. A dark patch lay sprawled on the ground in the distance, half buried by the waving sea of greens and yellows. His smile faded as quickly as hers had. Shyanne spurred Jack toward her brother's still form. Joseph jerked his horse around and kicked it in the sides. At first, the animal fought, its thirst strong, but the will of the man on its back was stronger.

In seconds, they raced back to where Drayco lay.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

New Release: Stage Presents

Serendipity Book 5: Stage Presents
By Brieanna Robertson

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Maxim is suffering from horrendous writer's block and has a deadline for a new novel looming ominously on the horizon. When a friend tells him she is planning on writing she and her husband's love story in script form, and then performing it as a play for his anniversary gift, he is intrigued. When she asks him to write the script, he is elated.

Nasarra takes Maxim back to the world of theatre in 1997-1998 as she tells him the detailed story of how she and her husband met and fell in love, and about what it really means to have your dreams come true. Along the way, she teaches him a little something about his own life, dreams, and falling in love all over again.


She frowned. He looked slightly familiar… Yes! Holy cow! It was the hottie who had run into her on the street earlier that week! But, that wasn't all. Something else called to Nasarra. Something deeper. Where else had she seen him before? He mesmerized her. She couldn't tear her gaze from him. It was like he was hypnotizing her with his unusual green-gold eyes and his wonderful voice. Suddenly, he stopped singing and Nasarra blinked. Two other people replaced him on the stage and she shook her head. Okay, that had been bizarre. She shook her head again and resumed her search for her purse.

For the rest of the night, Nasarra waited in anticipation for any scene that man was in. She had given up searching for her purse and had finally managed to find it at intermission lodged in the next person's seat. After making the mad race to the bathroom, she looked in her program to see who that magnificent actor was. He stared up at her in beautiful black and white, beside his character's name, Raoul Vicomte deChagny. He wore a mischievous smile and the lighting used in the photo highlighted his finely sculpted facial features. She glanced down at the name. Caleb Makepeace. She frowned. Even his name sounded familiar!

Act II seemed to fly by, and when the last song was sung, Nasarra was extremely disappointed. She had waited to see this musical for so long, and now, all too soon, it was over like some fantastic fantasy. When the performers came out to take their bows, she stood up and was quite certain that she clapped the loudest. Especially for that magnificent performer, Caleb Makepeace.

When the curtain closed and people started to file out of the theatre, Nasarra walked as slow as possible, trying to take in all of the sights and lock them away in her memory. There was no telling when she would be in a theatre like The Curran again.

It was pelting rain when she finally managed to wander her way to the door. It cloaked everything in mist and the steam from the manhole coverings on the street wisped and weaved in a slow, beguiling dance of mystery. She smiled. She had found the rain annoying the other day, but now she found it magical. It seemed to make the night complete.

She stepped outside and turned the collar of her jacket up to protect her neck from the dampness. Pivoting on her heel, she started up the street, but rammed into a person who was walking in the opposite direction with such a force that it knocked the air from her. She staggered back, trying to regain her senses, and looked up at the poor person she had just run over. Her eyes nearly bulged clear out of her skull. She had just mowed over the handsome actor with the beautiful voice! She squeezed her eyes shut in humiliation. This was great. Just great.

"Excuse me," she whispered. She stepped aside to let him by and averted her eyes to the pavement. He did the same, in the same direction, and they were right back to where they had started. She swallowed, feeling really dumb. Things just kept getting better and better. She stepped to her left; he stepped to his right. She stifled a groan. She stepped to her right; he stepped to his left.

A beautifully rich and masculine chuckle escaped the man's throat and he stepped back. "Did you want to dance?" he teased. "Is that what you're going for? You want to dance a minuet?"

Nasarra blushed. "I'm sorry," she murmured.

He flashed her a dazzling smile. "That's all right," he assured. He frowned slightly, looking her over, and some small bit of recognition came to life in his eyes. He pointed to the program she clutched to her chest. "You were at the show tonight?"

Nasarra nodded, attempting to swallow the lump in her throat.

"You were in the front row, weren't you?"

She stole a glance at him and nodded again.

He grinned. "I thought so. I always look out into the audience when I'm on stage, and I happened to glance over at you. I saw your fiery red hair and thought to myself, `that can't be the woman I ran down in the street the other day.'"

She gave a nervous laugh. "Yeah, that was a crazy day."

His grin broadened. "My name's Caleb," he said, extending his hand.

Nasarra stared at him. This was incredible. She held her hand out numbly and shook his, amazed by the power of his grip. "Nasarra." Her voice came out like the croak of a dying frog and she cleared her throat. "Nasarra," she stated.

His eyes swept over her again. "Nasarra. That's a very pretty name."

She smiled shyly. "Thank you." She braved a glance up at him and couldn't help but feel heat course through her body at his stunning smile. It was mischievous, playful, and the small dimple it created in his cheek made her heart falter.

"So, I guess we're even," he said.

She frowned.

"I ran you over. You repaid me in like kind." He folded his arms and raised an eyebrow. "Where should we go from here?"

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

New Release: Single Status

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B.J. and Dana, through a stateside headquarters error, find themselves sharing a villa when they come to start up a St. Croix power plant. The job is single status, which suits them in every way.

B.J. is still smarting from the end of her ten year marriage and Dana carries hurt and guilt for the death of his wife and young son in a plane crash. When B.J. becomes the scapegoat for everything that goes wrong on the job, Dana attempts to defend her, when he is not defending himself from her mistrust. Despite their denial, the attraction between them grows.

Can the torrid Caribbean nights melt their firm resolve and the power of love overcome their fear of


A deeply tanned man of indeterminate origin rushed in and seeing the group, came to stand in their midst. "Are you guys here with IPPS?" he inquired, and when they nodded, he went on. "Good. I'm Albert Zurow, your operations supervisor." He glanced at each of them in turn, then reached into his shirt pocket for a crumpled piece of paper. "We'll get started and hope the other plane arrives be-fore long." He nodded toward the first person to his left. "And you are?"

"Carl Evans." The man was short, had a protruding paunch and a receding hairline. B.J. guessed him to be over forty.

"Pete Marshall here." This one looked younger and in health club workout condition.

The introductions continued around the circle. "I'm Frank Kelly." Only three words but said in a tone of self-importance that was irksome.

"Yancy Webb." Adjusting his glasses, he straightened his lanky frame.

"Next, please." Albert Zurow looked impatiently at the man to his immediate right.

"Oh, sorry. Dana Thomas." Tall, dark and handsome, and he was probably well aware of it, B.J. observed

Zurow consulted his list. "Sutherland's plane must be late. I'll just—"

"I'm here." B.J. took a reluctant step toward the group. Six heads turned at the sound of B.J.'s voice. Six pairs of eyes stared in silence. Then Zurow recovered enough to speak.

"You're a woman," he said accusingly.

"Well, so I am." She gave the astonished man a wry smile and waited expectantly.

"There must have been some mix-up at the stateside headquarters. Nobody mentioned this, and the resumes haven't been received yet so—"

"Is there some restriction against female employees here?" B.J. asked with a delicate lift of one eyebrow.

Zurow blanched as though he envisioned an army of feminists already marching in picket lines around the plant site. "No. No, of course not. ChemCorp is an equal opportunity employer. It's just that we have arranged for the men, uh, employees to share housing and transportation in pairs. We've already leased every available villa in the area and now…" He looked at B.J. and shrugged.

"I have no problem with this," she told him calmly.

"I don't have a problem with it either," Carl Evans commented with a worried frown, "but I think my wife would."

"Anyone else here married?" Zurow asked.

"Guilty." Yancy Webb shook his head regretfully.

Zurow cleared his throat and looked back toward the circle of men surrounding him. "Each villa has two bedrooms," he said in a placating tone, "so only the bath would be jointly shared."

"We could draw straws." Frank Kelly smirked as he looked at the other two men.

"Or somebody could volunteer," Pete Marshall said with a meaningful look at Kelly.

"We're assigning pairs to alternate shifts," Zurow continued after an awkward silence, "so there would be plenty of privacy." He looked from one man to the other, his patience clearly wearing thin.

"Come on, fellas," B.J. chided, "this is the twenty-first century. I don't have anything contagious. I won't hang pantyhose in the shower. Actually, I don't even wear pantyhose. And I promise not to make a pass at whoever is brave enough to share quarters with me."

Kelly rolled his eyes, and Marshall nudged him. "Want to flip for it?"

Dana looked from the two men to the woman who stood waiting in her neatly creased tan slacks and white tailored shirt. Her hair was the color of ripe wheat, and she wore it in a short, boyish cut which made it hard to miss the bright splotches of color on her high cheek bones. She was obviously embarrassed by the situation but determinedly holding her ground and keeping it light. At the rate things were going they'd still be here tonight arguing about who had to make the supreme sacrifice of bunking with a good-looking
woman. If he solved the problem, they could move on to the business of settling in.

"I'll do it."

Six pairs of eyes turned toward him, four registering surprise and the other two gratitude. Dana felt himself turn red as he reached down and picked up his briefcase. "So let's get on with it."