Then I saw the Sun, learned how to laugh and shared chocolate under the firework covered sky. I was Nikki then; an innocent girl who smiled at only one person, a girl with hopes and dreams.
Looking for Dei
David A. Willson
Publication date: March 23rd 2018
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Fifteen-year-old Nara Dall has never liked secrets. Yet it seems that her life has been filled with them, from the ugly scar on her back to the strange powers she possesses. Her mysterious father refuses to say anything about her origins, and soon, she and her best friend must attend the announcement ceremony, in which youths are tested for a magical gift.
A gifted youth has not been announced in the poor village of Dimmitt for decades. When Nara uncovers the reason, she uses her own powers to make things right. The decision sets her on a path of danger, discovery, and a search for the divine. In the process, she learns the truth about herself and uncovers the biggest secret of all: the power of broken people.
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Fairmont – Capital of the Great Land 652PB (Post-Breshi)
The toddler blew at the dandelion bloom until its seeds broke free and floated away on a breeze that gusted past the man watching her from the bushes. His breath hitched as his burdens were lifted and briefly forgotten.
It had taken ten years to locate her. A life of study, prayer, and service to Dei in a monastery had not prepared him for so many years on the run, hiding under false names while he searched for the one he feared he might never find. His grizzled, greying goatee and unkempt hair might have labeled him a beggar or a desperate criminal, but the hope in his eyes told a different story.
Oblivious to the nearby threat, the girl dropped the crumpled dandelion stem and stumbled clumsily near a pile of stones. No more than two years old, she waddled across the overgrown orphanage courtyard, her cloth diaper askew. She plucked more flowers, her red hair dancing as she hopped after the seeds. She seemed to favor the world as her playmate, ignoring the twenty other children in the courtyard. She bumped into a small boy, fell down, and hopped back up with a baby-tooth grin before trotting off.
When she fell, a glimpse of her back jolted the man to his task. It was the blemish that beckoned him here—an ugly red scar stretching from upper back to waist, announcing her identity as the prophetic treasure he had sought for so long. The weight of the manuscript in his backpack grounded his thoughts, and he glanced around the area. There were no fences, plenty of bushes for cover, and a single matron leisurely surveying the yard. The woman sat on the aging building’s back steps, watching the little ones as they ran about. She wore a dress and would be unable to chase him. How long would it take for her to alert the authorities?
As he surveyed the grounds to plan his escape, the girl waggled her hand at a passing butterfly and giggled as it flew away. Fortune favored his plans when she ran to a group of dandelions just a few feet from his hiding place. Squatting, she grabbed several stems, preparing to blow and release the seeds.
The man looked over to the matron, who had turned away to manage a quarrel between two other children. Knowing this might be his only chance, he burst forward and scooped the babe up in one arm, then raced back through the bushes behind the orphanage. He ran as fast as he could, unable to avoid jostling the child in his arms. She began to cry at the shock of her abduction, still gripping the dandelion stems in one tiny fist.
Back at the orphanage, the matron in the dress looked toward the back of the yard. The only evidence of a disturbance was a cloud of dandelion seeds that drifted upon the air, scattering in the light breeze. She turned to the many children she cared for, oblivious to the crime that had just been perpetrated under her watch.
David A. Willson has worked as a restauranteur, peace officer, and now, author. Taught by his mother to read at a young age, he spent his childhood exploring magic, spaceships, and other dimensions. In his writing, he strives to bring those worlds to his readers.
Much of his material is inspired by the “Great Land” of Alaska, which he has called home for over 30 years. He lives there with his wife, five children, and 2 dogs. He is passionate about technology, faith, and fiction—not necessarily in that order.
Looking for Dei is Willson’s debut novel, set in a land where many more adventures will take place. Stay up to date with his ongoing efforts through the Looking for Dei Facebook page or visiting the website at davidawillson.com.
A bottle of tequila
10 lime wedges
1 sexy blonde
Add in a crazy Vegas weekend
Lick and Swallow.
What do you get? A recipe for disaster.
Last night I got married.
I’m not exactly sure.
I was drunk off my ass, so it’s not exactly crystal clear.
But, I woke up with a ring on my finger, a marriage certificate, and a sneaking suspicion I had a wild wedding night.
Oh, and a bride who is long gone.
Apparently, what happens in Vegas doesn’t always stay here. Sometimes it takes off running.
But a runaway bride is the least of my problems.
Now I’m chasing after my runaway bride with divorce on my mind.
What could go wrong?
This is book 3 in the series, but is self-contained and can be read as a standalone.
HEA inside and absolutely no cheating of any kind.
I won’t… ever.
Slowly the room begins to come into a focus… it’s a blurry focus, but still.
The first thing I notice is everything hurts.
Even my hair.
Definitely had too much to drink. The second thing I notice is I’m not in my one-room apartment, lying on my broken-down, never comfortable, probably ruining my back forever, futon.
I’m in a bed. A really soft bed. I’m also in what appears to be a very fancy room. A room with entirely too much sunshine coming in through the windows. My gaze immediately goes to the open glass doors that lead out to a balcony. When I look around I can see I’m not only in a strange hotel room, I’m in one that costs bank.
Lots of bank.
Then, I just happen to notice the crumpled wedding dress on the concrete floor of the balcony.
That’s when panic begins, as memories flood through my mind.
Memories of the night before.
Of course, it might not be the crumpled dress that brings those back quite as much as the huge leg—not that leg—wrapped over mine, the arm currently wrapped across my stomach and the third leg—yes, that “leg”—pushing against my ass.
I look down at the milk chocolate beast of an arm and I swear the female bits between my legs tingle as memories of the night before flood through me. Memories of… Titan. I have the strongest urge to wiggle against the semi-aroused cock pressing against my ass, but I don’t. I hold myself really still.
Because I’m in the middle of the biggest panic attack ever.
I can’t remember all of what I did last night. It’s a blur of devil’s juice, eating the worm—disgusting, by the way, and I may never drink tequila again—and sex… so much sex.
Sex everywhere. Bed, floor, shower, closet—don’t ask—and against the wall. Sex against the floor-to-ceiling window with my ass mooning the strip, but… sex on that balcony after I was stripped of my wedding dress is the one that sticks in my mind. Sex where I hung over the concrete balcony screaming, “Fuck me, harder, Big Daddy,” while Titan did indeed fuck me harder for everyone and anyone to see. There are other balconies close by. I can’t be entirely sure who saw us… or who we may have scarred forever.
Because, let’s face it, sex in real life is never like the porn movies.
I slide out of the bed an inch at a time—panic making my heart slam against my chest so loud I want to cry, because my head hurts like hell. Titan grumbles but flops over on his back, still asleep. I stand there looking down at him and I can’t move.
He’s that beautiful.
A QUIRKY WRITER GOING WHERE THE VOICES TAKE HER.
USA Today Best Selling Author Jordan Marie, is just a simple small town country girl who is haunted by Alpha Men who talk in her head 24 hours a day.
She currently has 14 books out including 2 that she wrote under the pen name Baylee Rose.
She likes to create a book that takes you on an emotional journey whether tears, laughter (or both) or just steamy hot fun (or all 3). She loves to connect with readers and interacting with them through social media, signings or even old fashioned email.
WRECKING US SAVING YOU by Leaona Luxx is set to release March 8th!
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“Talk to me.”
“Nothing, brother. Are you sure she was coming to school after?” I know Thayer’s trying to help, but so help me—I can’t with this.
“Yes, I’m positive. You know she would tell me,” I growl.
“Okay, alright. Just double checking.” She sighs. “What are you doing?”
“I just turned onto the highway, I’m hauling ass to her house.”
“Please be careful, you know how Lisa feels about you,” Thayer warns me with good intentions.
“Fuck her, like she gives a shit about Sarah,” I bark at her. “I’m sorry. I’m fucking scared.”
“Brother, I’m scared too. But you have to calm down, you’re not gonna do her any good being this upset.” She tries to calm me as best she can, but it’s not helping.
“I know!” I yell as the light turns green, and I spin my tires.
“Chord, slow down. You’ll not be any help if you wreck.” Her voice wavers as my stomach takes a pitfall.
I turn into her mobile home park, driving straight to her place. I shove my stick into park, licking my dry lips. “I’m here, give me five.” I don’t even let her answer before hanging up and jumping from my SUV.
I scan the area, looking for anyone who can tell me anything. Nothing, it’s like no one’s home. I take the steps two at a time. Pounding on the door the second I can. No answer.
I walk around the trailer, checking doors and windows, but there’s no sign of anyone. I rub my forehead, my heart racing. I close my eyes, trying to regain my senses. “Go home, maybe she’ll call,” I convince myself.
I drive the long way home, searching every bus stop and bench in the city. She’s nowhere to be found. There’s still no texts or a call. I’ve never been so pissed and frightened at the same time in my life. “Please, Lord, let her be alright. She means… everything to me.” I wipe the fledgling tears away as I make my way home.
I’m not even parked before One’s at my door. I shake my head. “She wasn’t there, One.” When my brother wraps his arms around me, I allow my fears to take me, and I cry.
“She’s gonna be alright, we’ll find her.” He pats my back, trying to calm my trembling body.
“Chord,” Dad calls my name, helping me to pull myself together. “We can’t make a formal report until tomorrow. Come on in, let me write down what you know.”
“Baby boy, come in, you’re a mess.” Mom slips her arm around my waist as One releases his hold.
“I know something’s wrong, I can feel it.” I stumble through the door.
We spend the rest of the evening going over everything I know. Her texts, where she was going, and the last time anyone heard from her. It was Thayer, she called my sister last. I’m a little surprised as to how I feel about that fact.
Watching as the sky turns dark, my body quakes with fear. Sarah hates the night, with good reason. I try to keep my mind busy, thinking of what could be happening to her has me freaking out.
I pace the foyer, waiting on Dad’s friend to arrive, he’s a detective. I refused to go to school today. It’s been twenty-four hours since I’ve heard from Sarah. I couldn’t even sleep last night, so school isn’t a priority.
Leaona, also known as Lea, lives with her husband, Lu in southern WV. A mother of three sons and mother in law to three amazing woman. She enjoys spending time with her furbabies, Kaylea (cat) and Frankie (beagle), watching Carolina Panthers and Marshall University Football, reading, writing, gardening, crafts, NASCAR, TWD, HGTV, hot rods, and surf fishing.
I live in the hospital, working 18 hour days. My entire life consists of running from patient to patient until I meet her. The girl that is afraid of her own shadow. She starts out as a patient, but thoughts of her consume me. One phone call leads to me meeting her amazing little girl which changes everything. With the help of my new partner in crime, I set out to try and save her from a life of fear. Can she learn to trust me with her life and both their hearts?
**** TRIGGER WARNING: contains mention of physical and emotional abuse. Although no abuse is written out it is described, at times in detail. ****
“Hey, Sophie, Do you like ice cream?” I ask.
I look over at Isabel and give her a wink because I have an idea. I kneel in front of Sophie, so we are eye level.
“I like ice cream, why?” she answers.
I can’t help but chuckle. There is not getting anything past this one, Isabel is in trouble when she gets older.
“Well, I need to go to the store before we head to my house. I was hoping you would help me pick an ice cream flavor?”
“Ice Cream? For after dinner?”
“Yes, but you have to be good and listen to Mommy while we are in the store,” I respond. I feel like I am negotiating with a terrorist at this point, but as long as she feels comfortable, I see it as a win.
I look over at Isabel and see her trying to stifle a laugh. When I turn back to Sophie, she seems deep in thought.
“How about ice cream and a movie?”
“Well, Ms. Sophie you have a deal.” I reach my hand out, and we shake to close the deal.
All three of us are smiles as we load into my truck and head to Target, for some supplies for Isabel and Sophie. Going shopping with a four-year-old is an experience. Everything is interesting, Sophie seems to say whatever pops into her head, it’s both entertaining and exhausting.
“Ooohhhh, Mommy! I wanna feel all the pillows!” Sophie says as we pass the decorative pillows on our way to grab some clothes for her.
“Mommy! Mommy! Mommy! Can I see the toys? Please?!?” she says as we pass the toy aisle after grabbing toiletries for both ladies and clothes for Isabel.
Through the entire trip, Isabel keeps her cool and calmly tells Sophie ‘no’ even when she pouts. The pouty lip pulls my heartstrings, so I take pity on her, she’s had a long day.
“Hey, Sophie, why don’t you help me pick an ice cream flavor? What’s your favorite?” I ask her.
Her entire face lights up like it’s Christmas morning. She starts to answer but looks at Isabel first, when she nods that it’s okay, Sophie lets out a little squeal of excitement.
“I can really pick the ice cream?” she looks at me like I’ll take it back, but I would never do that.
“Yup, you get to pick,” I tell her.
“CHOCOLATE!” she shouts.
Her answer makes me laugh, even though Isabel is telling her to calm down and not be so loud in the store.
“Alright, Sophie. Let’s go pick some ice cream.” Turning to Isabel, I ask, “Mind if I push her?”
Surprised at the offer, Isabel says, “Oh…Um…okay.”
Stepping up to the cart, I start to jog then jump onto the bottom bar of the shopping cart. It’s been a long time since I took a joy ride on a cart, but Sophie’s squeal of laughter makes up for the dirty looks. I can’t control my own laughter as I get the cart under control and wait for Isabel to catch up to us.
“That was fun!” Sophie exclaims, “Can we do it again?”
Before I get a chance, Isabel responds for me, “No, Sophie. That’s enough excitement for tonight.”
She tries to look stern, but she’s hiding a smile as well. We make our way to the ice cream cooler, and I tell Sophie to pick whatever one she wants.
“I want the chocolate one,” she tells me.
“Just plain old chocolate? No marshmallows or peanut butter or caramel?” I ask. I can’t believe she just wants plain chocolate.
“Nope. Just chocolate,” she tells me, putting her hands on her hips. “What’s wrong with just chocolate?”
Putting my hands in the air in surrender, I respond by saying,
“Just checking, sweet pea.”
We gather our items we need and head to the registers, Sophie insists on loading the conveyor belt herself. This girl is amazing. She is smart, spunky, and definitely has a mind of her own. I think I’m falling in love with her already.
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Raised all over the country, I’m an interesting mix of East Coast meets West Coast with a little bit of Southern thrown in, just for good measure. I married a sexy man in uniform who let me spawn and am now raising a mutinous army of hell raisers that I created myself, all while he defends our country. I drink too much coffee until it’s late enough to drink too much wine and is sexually frustrated for your freedom. I never thought I would be a writer, it was never an interest of mine. But when the voices start in and won’t let you sleep, you write so they STFU and leave you alone for a while. If you see me online, I’m probably sitting in a closet, hiding from my kids. I’m sarcastic, love a dirty alpha male, and love to laugh.
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