Release Day | Nine Stones

It’s time!

Nine Stones is released today!

JMS-Books is turning nine and to celebrate there will be a lot of stories with the number nine in them. In Nine Stones, there are, not surprisingly, nine stones LOL.

Felix Lane is a nice guy, he really is, and yet his garden is filling up on gravestones. The strange thing about it is that he keeps burying the same cat over and over…or maybe he’s just insane, he’s not sure.

And Kirk, his hot neighbour, who never leaves his house is never at home when Felix needs his help.

With a drumming heart, he opened the door to the patio. The petunias had been lovely on the balcony.

He stepped closer, careful not to make any hasty motions in case the cat was alive and hurt. “Hi there, kitty cat.” Please be alive.

The cat didn’t move.

“Come on, sweetie.” He didn’t know what he wanted the cat to do, jump up and hiss at him? Yes, a hissing cat was better than a dead cat.

He brushed away some of the soil. The poor petunias needed more water, the dirt was too dry. Those striped legs lay unmoving on the sun-warmed flagstone. The beautiful tiger-like fur had grains of soil in it, and most of the leopard spots were hidden under wilting pink flowers.

Felix winced as he looked into the unseeing yellow eyes. Last time the eyes had been shut, but not now. Seconds slipped by as he sank down to sit cross-legged in the middle of the murder scene. The eyes, they reminded him of Kirk’s. It made his throat close up. He had to tell Kirk about this. Perhaps he could leave Gibson out of the story since he’d promised Lexi, but he had to come clean. Kirk might hate him for what he’d done, but he couldn’t go around hiding it.

He was a cat killer—again.

The sob clashed with the beauty of the bird song coming from the small forest outside his garden. How could this be? Felix had never killed an animal in his entire life—except for mosquitoes and gnats. He carried spiders outside instead of killing them if he found them in his house. Never in his life had he believed he’d become a murderer. It wasn’t in his DNA.

books2read.com/NineStones (Though if you hop over to JMS-Books, there is a new release sale on 20%, ends at the 19th of July)


ninestoneshe only thing worse than having a hot neighbor you’re too intimidated to talk to is accidentally hitting his cat with your car.

Felix Lane was perfectly content to spend the rest of his days with Sunny, his canary life companion, in their quiet little corner of the suburbs. But then Kirk Shoo with his unusual eyes moved in across the street, and Felix’s carefully constructed life is starting to unravel.

When your every bad-boy fantasy lingers at the mailbox, stands too close and smells too damn good, what’s an under-appreciated administrative assistant to do? Besides sneak out the backdoor to go to work? But when Kirk’s cat runs out in front of Felix on his way home, he has no choice but to face the music and his dream man. Unless …

What starts as a tragic accident turns into something far more bizarre. And when Felix’s backyard begins to look like a pet cemetery, he has no choice but to come clean. That is, if he can manage to find his sexy neighbor at all.


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Meet Felix Lane

Felix Lane is a quiet guy. He’s happy in his corner of the world, working as an administrative assistant, and spending his spare time with Sunny – his beloved canary bird. He doesn’t have any friends, boyfriends never work out, and while he grumbles over the sales rapports he has to go through, he likes numbers way better than people.

Everything is calm, quiet, and familiar, until…

Have you heard of Carl Jung’s archetypes? There are 12 types of people, according to Jung. When I started writing Nine Stones, I figured it’d be fun to pick one and try to make the MC be that type.

Felix Lane is the sage.

He is smart. He is focused. He is reflecting.

His biggest fear is to be outsmarted and to feel confused.

His weakness is that he overthinks things.

Now, Felix might not be a typical sage, but he does have some of the traits. And while the imagination always takes me places I hadn’t first thought when writing, I did try to keep in mind how a sage would think. Throughout the story, Felix’s biggest fear is to be fooled and taken advantage of.

But Nine Stones is about more than just a sage, it’s also a story about cats. Kirk Shoo, Felix’s neighbour, is a cat shifter. Not that Felix knows, but he does suspect something is up with Kirk.

Felix would never hurt an animal, and yet his garden is turning into a pet cemetery, one stone at the time.


An Ice Cream Incident

He hid the spade, pretended he hadn’t been about to bury the cat, and hurried around the house. With a quick glance up the road to make sure no car was heading his way, he jogged over to Kirk’s.

He knocked, he rang the bell, he knocked again, he peeked in through Kirk’s living room window, but Kirk was nowhere to be found.

What the hell? For a guy who never left his house, he was gone an awful lot.

Lexi’s car appeared at the top of the road and Felix went to meet her.

“Hi.” She stepped out of the car, but her smile died when she looked at Felix. “What happened?”

“Eh…” Should he tell her?

“Felix.” That one word was demand and accusation all in one.

“Gibson killed a cat.”

“What?”

Felix flinched at the volume. “Shh.”

“You did not say what you just said.”

He motioned for her to come along and showed her the cat on the lawn. Neither of them spoke, they stood in the sweltering afternoon and looked at the unmoving body.

“It’s a Bengal.”

“A what?” Was it a wild cat? Perhaps it wasn’t Kirk’s after all. The relief bubbling in his chest was misplaced—the cat was still dead, but if he didn’t have to tell Kirk his life would be so much easier.

“A Bengal cat, they’re super expensive. You can’t tell anyone, Felix.” She dug her fingers into his arms and shook to emphasize her words. “I can’t afford to… Oh God, are you sure it was Gibson? Perhaps it was ill and…died.”

“He shook it until it went limp.”

“Shit, I’m gonna be sick.” She turned away and took a few breaths before looking at the cat again. She’d twisted her hair up in a sophisticated updo, she usually just ran a brush through it a second before she left the house. Growing up they’d looked alike with their chestnut hair and brown eyes. It wasn’t until they’d hit their teens Felix became taller than her, and while he’d kept his lithe figure, he wasn’t as slender as she. Sadly, he wasn’t as fit either. He sighed; going to the gym bored him to death. He winced as his gaze fell on the cat.

Lexi leaned against him. “We must hide it. You can’t tell anyone.”

“But—”

“No one!”

Felix raised his hands. “Okay.” He picked up the cat and walked over to the grave he’d prepared.

“Oh, you’re a good man.” She looked at the hole and wiped away a tear from the corner of her eye. “Gibson probably didn’t mean to hurt him, I’m sure he thought they were playing.”

Felix opened his mouth to explain exactly how murderous Gibson’s intent had been but Lexi cut him off. “Tell me you have ice cream.”

“I have ice cream.” Of course, he had ice cream.

“Good. This is an ice cream incident.”

(No cats die in the story)

books2read.com/NineStones


ninestones

The only thing worse than having a hot neighbor you’re too intimidated to talk to is accidentally hitting his cat with your car.

Felix Lane was perfectly content to spend the rest of his days with Sunny, his canary life companion, in their quiet little corner of the suburbs. But then Kirk Shoo with his unusual eyes moved in across the street, and Felix’s carefully constructed life is starting to unravel.

When your every bad-boy fantasy lingers at the mailbox, stands too close and smells too damn good, what’s an under-appreciated administrative assistant to do? Besides sneak out the backdoor to go to work?

But when Kirk’s cat runs out in front of Felix on his way home, he has no choice but to face the music and his dream man. Unless…

What starts as a tragic accident turns into something far more bizarre. And when Felix’s backyard begins to look like a pet cemetery, he has no choice but to come clean. That is if he can manage to find his sexy neighbor at all.


This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Jaeger’s Lost and Found – A Soaked Vampire Kind of Story

*drum roll*

Thunder and rain at Jaeger's Lost & FoundToday’s the day when Archibald Jaeger and Gael Murray step out into the rain and leave the old book shop behind to face the world. It’s not an ordinary world they’re facing, no it’s a world where it never stops raining, a world where humans and non-humans are living in different districts.

Archie is a finder, though a rather crappy one. His best friend Edie is part nagi and therefore shunned by the non-human world. Together, Archie and Edie run Jaeger’s Lost and Found, and their latest client is a vampire doomed to die within a few days since he’s lost his connections.

I had a plan for 2019, and Jaeger’s Lost and Found wasn’t part of that plan, but I was browsing JMS Books‘ website and saw a call for stories about lost connections. It was a month left till the deadline and I figured I wouldn’t make it, but this idea of a man meant to find things popped up in my mind.

I talked it over with my writing pals, Al and Amy, saying I probably wouldn’t make, and it was no use in trying, and the idea probably wasn’t any good anyway.

I went to bed, and the next day I started writing. The minimum word limit was 12k so that was my goal – three weeks later my supposed 12k story had turned into a 28k story.

Writing this story was so much fun!

Archie stared; he didn’t care if Gael could see the shock on his face. No one wanted to get to know him. He ran a hand over his chest, nervously making sure his suit vest hadn’t creased.

“So fucking proper,” Gael growled, and it sent a tingle skidding over Archie’s skin. Inappropriate, he reminded himself. No tingles around clients, it was not how he operated.

“Oh no, do I have to stop?”

“What?”

“You have this look…is it a thing we have to get?” Gael slowed down, looking around.

Archie rubbed his chest again. “No, it’s fine, you can keep going.” As soon as the words were out of his mouth there was a tug inside of him, more than a tug, it insisted. “Sorry, yes, I think we have to turn.”

“What?” Gael pushed some hair from his face. “Turn? Where?”

“Erm…” Archie breathed through another pull. “Next exit to the right.”

Gael grinned. “We would have anyway.”

“We’re already in Aspal?” That went faster and wasn’t nearly as excruciating as Archie had imagined.

“No.” Gael flashed fangs much like Edie used to, but he only had a single set. When Edie did it was playful, to him at least, though he had no doubt others found it terrifying. Gael on the other hand… Archie tingled again.

“I need a snack.”

“Charming.”

“Oh, I can be Mr. Jaeger, I can be.”

Archie swallowed but shook off Gael’s words. “It’s a vampire thing, right?”

For a second surprise flickered in Gael’s eyes before he turned back to look at the mostly deserted road. Archie squinted past the rain and the windshield wipers to a sign indicating an exit.

“Ah, yeah, we can give people mental nudges, but most often we don’t need to, though. Most species instinctively want to please us.”

Archie forced himself not to show any emotion. Instinctively want to please—that wasn’t fair. Vampires already had many advantages compared to most species—they were fast, strong, and immortal. They could die, so not indestructible, but unless someone chopped their head off or cut off their mental connections, they’d live forever.

Gael turned off the freeway and toward what almost looked like a ghost town. Stratholm wasn’t a fancy district by any means, but Archie wouldn’t voluntarily go here. It was where the ghost hand wanted him to go, though.

“You don’t feel it?”

Archie blinked a couple of times, his eyes gritty from lack of sleep and his heart thundering at the thought of leaving the car. “Feel what?”

Gael frowned. “A pull, a desire to please me?”

Archie looked at him, his flawless skin, beautiful lips, and the dark eyes. He wouldn’t have minded seeing him panting and sweaty, eyes shining with lust—irrational thinking. Archie never got into bed with strangers, and few stayed long enough to get to know him.

JMS is having a 20% discount on Jaeger’s Lost and Found for its first week, so head on over there, or if you prefer to shop elsewhere you’ll find where it’s available here:

books2read.com/Jaegerslostandfound 


Jaeger's Lost & FoundJaeger’s Lost and Found is the only finder shop to be had on the whole of the west coast. The problem is, Archibald Jaeger, the last of the Jaeger line, seems to be defective. A result of too many generations of crossbreeding with humans. But Jaegers are finders, and there’s nothing to be done about it.

Gael Murray has lost his connections. A vampire can’t survive without the energy exchange he has with the members of his coven through mental links. And, as of this morning, they’ve all vanished. Gael will die if he doesn’t reinstate his connections through a blood exchange. And his only hope to find the other members of his coven is to hire a finder.

Even a terrible finder is better than none at all.

Together Gael and Archie set out to save Gael’s life, but what was an already difficult task becomes nearly insurmountable. And Archie, who can never find what he’s looking for, finds himself falling in love with a man he’ll be hard pressed to save.