Tag Archives: magic

The Tower in the Mist, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Hey there all you sell-swords and spell-slingers, you heroes and wizards of every stripe. You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio, the only show that brings you interviews with the characters you love.

I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and my special guest today is Zathi from the land of Skaythe. My bio says she works for the ruling mage, named Dar-Gothull. “Welcome to the show, Zathi.”

“Well met.”

“So what exactly do you do for Dar-Gothull?”

“I am a Hunter-Guard, part of Dar-Gothull’s army. Our task is to move among the people and stamp out all who would rebel against our master. Bandits who ambush the tax collectors, scholars who speak or write against Dar-Gothull’s way, mages who would try to rival the great Dar-Gothull.

“In addition, we are a visible symbol. We remind them that no one can escape Dar-Gothull’s reach.”

“Wait a minute, that sounds a lot like an Imperial Stormtrooper. What exactly is Dar-Gothull’s way?”

“Dar-Gothull’s way is that the strong should rule over the weak. Their strength gives them that right. It doesn’t mean the weak can’t defend themselves. If they fight for what they have, then they deserve to keep it. Most people understand this. They send their mageborn children to Dar-Gothull’s temple for training, knowing that their whole family will one day profit from the mage’s status.

“Among the mages, there is a herarchy. They rise in power by fighting for what they want. But many of them develop a false sense of their own might and become corrupted by greed. Some even conspire to seize power from Dar-Gothull himself. We Hunter-Guards track them down and bring them to the master for his judgment.”

“That sounds… gladiatorial. But I suppose every leader lashes out at rebels. What does your boss’s justice look like?”

“He devours their souls to fuel his own power. Thus, any mage who seeks to overthrow Dar-Gothull only makes him stronger.”

“Um, I just––”

“Does that shock you? I am no mage, but I too have fought to achieve my desires. As a young woman, I was forcibly conscripted into the Hunter-Guards. I could have wept and wailed for my home. I could have stuck to nursing the wounded. Instead, I chose to follow orders and fight as hard as I could. Now I am a Sergeant, leader of my own squad. We are all women, so we don’t have to put up with guardsmen who can’t keep their hands to themselves.”

“Are there many female Sergeants?”

“There is one — me. The other Sergeants aren’t fond of it. They do what they can to drag us down. My guardswomen watch out for each other. Every bounty we bring in improves our gear and our reputation.

“Only, this latest mage has been… difficult. He may be more than we can hold onto.”

“Sounds like a tough guy. What makes him different?”

“We heard there was a group of them, traveling around in disguise as minstrels. They do funny plays and make people dance, even sing love songs. Gah!

🎼 “You’d think that people would have had enough of silly love songs” 🎶

“They make people weak. They tell them they deserve to have an easy life. But that’s not all. They take news around where it isn’t wanted. People who were sick suddenly get better. Sometimes the commoners start to make demands about cutting taxes. These renegades want people to be happy, but they’re less happy because of their ridiculous new ideas.

“Take Keilos. He was singing some sappy thing in a tavern. We knew he was a mage, but he didn’t even try to resist when we took him down. The others all ranted and made threats, or they tried to bribe us with money and power. Keilos just keeps smiling. He flatters the guardswomen with little jokes. No matter how rough we are, he doesn’t complain. It’s just unnatural.”

“Sounds like he isn’t as bad as Dar-Gothull thinks.”

“Lisa, he’s worse. He makes my guardswomen question their purpose. If he weakens our resolve, it will be the death of us all. I’ve sworn to take him in, just like all the others. But now there are problems. In order to reach the capital, we had to go through the Hornwood. It’s a cursed forest, full of dark magic and monsters like that giant badger —”

“Wait a minute. Giant badger? Regular sized ones have a bad enough attitude. What did you do?”

“We fought it, of course, but it was so huge that it hardly felt our blades. Keilos had been tied up, but he got loose somehow and came to help us. He made a light that blinded it, then pulled its feet out from under it. The beast even had me in its jaws, but I stabbed it hard enough to make it let go. It finally ran off.

“It was just good luck nobody was killed, but now we’re stuck in the Hornwood. The horses and oxen ran from it, and we have to find them or push our wagon the rest of the way. Somehow we have to keep control of Keilos all that time.”

“What’s your master plan?”

“I have a job to do. I’m going to do it, but there’s a whole lot of cursed forest between here and there. I hope I won’t need any more help from Keilos. I already owe him, and Hunter-Guards can’t make friends with mages. Not even the nice ones who sing pretty songs.”

“I wish we could all just get along, but since you’re my guest today I wish you good luck. Any closing remarks for our listeners today?”

“When you have a goal, fight for it and never give up.”

“You can learn all about Zathi and her mission in the book, The Tower in the Mist, by Deborah Fredericks. I’ll put all the details on the website after I go off the air.

“Don’t forget to tip your waitress today. By that, I mean use those sharing buttons. We want as many people as possible to know about this new story. Deborah and Zathi would do it for you, when your character appears on the next Lisa Burton Radio.”

***

The Tower in the Mist

Zathi’s job is to capture renegade mages, but Keilos isn’t like any other mage she’s dealt with. Her drive to bring him in only leads them deeper into a cursed forest. Together, warrior and mage will face deadly beasts and grapple with decisions that compromise every principle. Until they stumble upon a place of ancient, forgotten magic. Zathi must choose — allow Keilos to claim it, or kill him once and for all.

Pre-Order Links

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07QL476BJ?ref_=pe_3052080_276849420https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07QL476BJ?ref_=pe_3052080_276849420

Other Formats: https://books2read.com/u/3nK1Mo

Author Bio

Deby Fredericks has been a writer all her life, but thought of it as just a fun hobby until the late 1990s. She made her first sale, a children’s poem, in 2000.

Fredericks has six fantasy novels out through two small presses. The latest is The Grimhold Wolf, released by Sky Warrior in 2015. Her children’s stories and poems have appeared in magazines such as Boys’ Life, Babybug, Ladybug, and a few anthologies. In the past, she served as Regional Advisor for the Inland Northwest Region of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, International (SCBWI).

Web site: http://www.debyfredericks.com

Blog: http://wyrmflight.wordpress.com

Newsletter: http//eepurl.com/geV_nX

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War of Nytefall, Rivalry on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Hey there, all you night-stalkers and day-walkers. You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio. The only show that brings you interviews with characters from the books you love.

I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and my special guest today is Mab. Mab is a new kind of vampire called a Dawn Fang. I know what that is, but our listeners might not. “Welcome to the show, Mab. Let’s start with the Dawn Fangs.”

“Thanks for having me. Although, I admit that I’m not comfortable being so exposed. Dawn Fangs are a new breed of vampire in Windemere. There are a lot of differences such as us having a heartbeat, being able to eat regular food, and not being able to use magic. We still have abilities, but their closer to natural talents than spells. The biggest change, and what causes a lot of trouble, is that Dawn Fangs don’t lose their powers in sunlight. Your world believes vampires get destroyed by the sun, but in Windemere, they used to only grow very weak. It’s pretty handy, but it does come with some complications.”

“It sounds to me like you’re missing the old ways. Would you rather return to the days of vampire one-point-oh?”

“Yes and no. Don’t get me wrong because I really like my new abilities and I get to work with Clyde again. Been decades since we were running our small gang. It’s the situation that I’m not a big fan of right now. I expected him to come back and we’d go back to taking whatever we wanted. Now, he has to think about the future of the Dawn Fangs and that doesn’t leave much time for the fun stuff. I mean, he’s turning out to be a pretty good ruler, but I’m not really sure where I fit in.”

“Sounds like we need to talk about Clyde. You two had a relationship once.”

“Long ago, Clyde and I were partners in crime then partners in everything else. It was love and respect that kept us together. Honestly, us being romantic partners wasn’t that different than anything else. Just more kissing and bed antics. Felt like a natural progression to what we already had. Feel like an idiot being so clinical here. That was a long time ago. Then I caught him in bed with Chastity who had used her magic to look like me in an attempt to help our relationship. That caused a lot of fighting and nearly broke the gang up, but Clyde and I managed to settle things.”

“My bio says Chastity was trying to help you. Seems like an odd way to help, but vampires are a bit different.”

“Vampires are different, but we were all mortal at some point. Even after centuries, most of us remember the emotions that once controlled our actions. As angry as I was at Chastity, I can’t say I was innocent. I went to her for help in spicing up my love life and made a joke about her impersonating me to do the things I didn’t feel comfortable doing. She thought that was a request and tried to help. Chastity and I get along now, but I did try to fight her a lot after that incident. Never won because she’s a master of charm magic, which she’s gotten better at since becoming a Dawn Fang. One spell and I do whatever she wants because I just cannot find a way around that. It’s pretty frustrating.”

“Keep fighting, I suppose. Besides, I don’t think robot girls can be charmed out of their pants. Not that way, anyhow.”

“Like I said, we got over it. Immortality means you really shouldn’t hold grudges, especially when you might have to work with the other person. Chastity is still a great source of information and, now that I can eat real food, she runs a popular bakery. I mean, the Scrumptious Siren has other things like the bar and brothel, but I’m a sucker for chocolate. Not like she charges me . . . or knows I snatch things from the shadows.

“Besides, we all took Clyde’s disappearance pretty badly. There was an event in my world called the Great Cataclysm, which changed the face of Windemere. Clyde had been swallowed up by the ground along with a city dedicated to the Durag the Sun God. Took me fifty years to get permission to look for him since we had a war going on in the aftermath and everyone else thought he was dead. I was the only one who thought he was still alive. Although, I didn’t realize what I was unleashing when I went to free him. To be fair, he was just waiting for me to turn up before he busted out and slaughtered a lot of Duragians before they could kill me.

“How do I explain this? Clyde came back very different. He’s the first Dawn Fang, so he turned all of us. It was an accident with me, but everyone else drank his blood willingly. Chastity was the first actually, which made it hard to keep hating her. When you think there’s only three of your kind, you tend to reconsider your issues with them. I wish that was the extent of the complications that my life would take. Should have seen what was coming, especially since being a Dawn Fang meant our old way of life was long over.”

“How so, Mab?”

“It’s hard to remain a carefree thief when you’re involved in politics and a civil war. Our enemies don’t really like that we exist because they think we’re going to try to wipe them out first. Well, Clyde is probably going to do that out of spite, but they really should have tried to leave us alone. It hurts to have old friends now be enemies and not being able to go back to your old home. We all worked out of the city of Nyte, but we can’t step foot in there without a battle. Then, the womb-born showed up and that threw a new wrinkle into our lives. Who would have thought Dawn Fangs could get pregnant and give birth to actual children? Once we got through that mess, this Vampire Queen steps out of rumors that are a couple centuries old and takes Clyde away. We have no idea where he is. I only have a vague idea of who and if that harpy is calling herself a Queen then I’m a friggin’ Goddess.”

“Sounds like you need to bail him out – again.”

“I can’t let someone have Clyde when they don’t deserve him . . . I mean, he’s my partner and I refuse to let him down. The biggest challenge is finding the Vampire Queen’s hideout and then it’s all about battling our way there. She’s going to make it difficult since we’ve heard that she has an army of assassins and followers. Clyde should be able to hold out until I can get there, but it’s going to take time. I have the ability to travel through shadows, all of which are connected by this monster-filled void. Only problem is that I need to know where I’m going and that requires time. A lot of time. Why couldn’t that idiot just punch and murder his way out of trouble instead of leaving me to save his ass? Strongest of the Dawn Fangs and he gets himself kidnapped without a trace. He better have a good reason for putting me through all this worrying and anger.”

“Will you use some of the Vengeance Hounds to help out?”

“My friends are definitely onboard. Doesn’t matter if I want them to stay behind. The Vampire Queen took one of our enemies too, so we have to work with a few of them. That whole enemy of my enemy is my friend. There’s going to be some friction, especially between those who never got along in the first place. I’m not really in the mood to play peacekeeper, so they better settle things themselves. Too much trouble and I’m leaving all of them behind. My brother can lecture me about teamwork and how I can’t take on an entire army by myself when I get back. Not like I have to fight since I can just sneak in, grab Clyde, and get out. That is unless the Vampire Queen is expecting that. Guess having a team does mean I can focus on saving Clyde instead of wasting time with everything else.”

“While it all seems pretty complicated, it sounds to me like you’re going to dive back in. I’m a sucker for a good love story, even if it’s kind of sick and twisted. I wish you all the possible luck, and I’m sure our listeners do too.”

“Love story? What do you mean love story? I didn’t say I was still in love with Clyde. We’re partners and protect each other. I’m sure he would be just as angry and worried if I was the one kidnapped. Love is a pretty strong word anyway and comes with a lot of weight to it. No, Lost, that isn’t the signal to stop! Don’t you dare cut off your psychic powers before I can-”

“You can read all about Mab and Clyde in the War of Nytefall series by Charles Yallowitz. The newest book is called War of Nytefall: Rivalry. I’ll post all the pertinents online after I log off.

“Charles has always been a great supporter of this broadcast. I don’t believe there is a single episode he didn’t reblog, tweet, and share somehow. Let’s return some of that support today and share my interview with Mab all across the internet. If your character appeared on Lisa Burton Radio, Charles was there for you.

“For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

Blurb-

Seeking the pleasure of revenge, an ancient rumor will reveal herself to be a deadly legend.

Lurking within the shadows for centuries, the Vampire Queen has been drawn to the conflict that surrounds Clyde. Only whispers have been spread about this elusive figure, who has amassed a kingdom that can rival Nyte and Nytefall. All that she is missing is the strongest vampire to crown as her king. In one fell swoop, she has taken the most powerful of her kind, including Clyde and Xavier Tempest. Hosting a tournament where the rules seem to change at her whim, the Vampire Queen threatens to shatter the already strained world that lurks beneath Windemere’s surface. Yet, there is more to her desires, which seep from a soul that is pulsing with fury. For her kingdom can never be complete until she holds the head of the one who wronged her centuries ago.

Can Mab stand against her ancient rival and save her beloved partner?

Sales link-  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07QHLW76N/

 

Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After spending many years fiddling with his thoughts and notebooks, he decided that it was time to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house with only pizza and seltzer to sustain him, Charles brings you tales from the world of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you and drawing you into a world of magic.

Blog: www.legendsofwindemere.com

Twitter: @cyallowitz

Facebook: Charles Yallowitz
Website: www.charleseyallowitz.com

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Nothing quite like the terror of hitting the publish button

I got to the writing cabin early this morning. So early, Lisa was still recharging her batteries.

I wasted no time heading for my office, but Lisa intercepted me at my computer, at least her voice did.

“I need another hour of juice.” Her voice came from the speakers. “I’ve never seen you so early before. I sent a command to the coffee pot to start brewing, but you’ll have to give it twelve minutes and eighteen seconds to brew.”

Doubt, the raven, watched me with his malignant gaze. He spread his ebony wings and glided over to the desk.

I loaded my manuscript, chose some keywords, added a cover.

“Blork, pik, pik.”

I think that means how much I suck, but could not be dissuaded.

I winged it when it came to the blurb. I always do this, and really should spend a month getting it just right. For some reason, it always feels more genuine to write it on the fly.

“Ha, ha, ha. Ha, ha, ha.”

“Shut up, you stupid bird. Don’t you need to go outside and cruise for roadkill?”

Doubt paced back and forth on my desk. He swept his head from side to side, as if to say, “No, no, no.”

It didn’t matter. I uploaded the damned book. Then the waiting began. Amazon can take up to three days to approve a new book. I checked email. Nothing.

The beeper on the coffee pot went off, so I helped myself. Then checked email.

A couple of webcomics published new pages, so I read those. Then checked email.

Lisa Burton Radio. Checked email.

A new critique submission ate up a couple of hours. Checked email between each chapter.

Chatted with Story Empire compatriots. Checked email.

Lisa showed up. She looked fabulous in her oversized New Year’s sweatshirt and black tights. “Whatcha doin’?”

“Just checking email.”

“There’s an Indiana Jones film festival on. Maybe you should check it out.”

“Right after I check my email.”

She grabbed me by the arm, then walked me to the couch. She’s connected to the entire house, and the television came on without a glance. “… Goose-stepping morons like yourselves should try reading books, instead of burning them…”

“I’d better check my email.”

“Relax. It will all happen in time.” She went to tend her pet rabbit.

I pulled my hidden phone from my pocket and checked email.

It went like that pretty much all day. I exchanged a few notes about the critique, then went back to chatting with the Story Empire crowd. One of them told me they just bought my book. “ACK!!!” I still didn’t have an email.

I got the link from her, then created an Amazon global link. I did a long-planned facelift on my blog. It looks so great. Sean Harrington did an update on my banner image to keep it in theme with the new book.

Still no email from Amazon. When I dug deeper, it was in my junk folder. WHAT??? Nothing really ever goes in my junk folder, so I never thought about it, but there it was.

So (Composing myself), Lanternfish is a book. I made a new graphic for the sidebar, and you can pick up your copy by clicking on the cover. I sent out a couple of blog tour inquiries, and need to get started sending out the pre-written posts. They’re all unique, so my followers can get updated stuff at each stop. I have more people to contact, but none of this happens until Amazon sends the email.

Of course, I have to go back to work tomorrow. That puts a damper on some of this. I’m sorely tempted to take tomorrow off now. Goodreads, BookBub, and a bunch of other places need updates now.

Lanternfish is the book I wrote about all summer. It’s the one with root monsters, giant jellyfish, moving reef, and more. If pirate fantasy is your thing, I’d like to draw your attention to this one.

I have some fun posters Lisa made to help promote with, and can’t wait to share them.

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Filed under Muse, Writing

Tortured Soul, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Welcome all you basement alchemists out there. Take a seat you members of secret societies. Have we got a show for you today. You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio, the only show that brings you the characters from the books you love. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and I have a doozie for you today. “Welcome to the show, Michelangelo.”

“Good day, Lisa Burton.”

“I’ve wanted to get you on the show for a while now.”

“That is my understanding, yes. Carmina Orsini—I believe she has asked you, as well as everyone she likes, to call her Nonna—has been asking me to talk with you. As I have told her repeatedly, I do not have the time. Alas, I also do not have the time to continue arguing with her. So, here I am. Against my better judgment. Because the woman is just… such a difficult woman to refuse.”

“I know Nonna, and she’s a wonderful person. She was on the show a year ago. Having some problems with one of her granddaughters, Donni.”

“Yes. I was made aware of her transgressions. She should not have done that. Doing so was dangerous. As is this. But, as I said, she is persuasive.”

“Now for our listeners, you are the actual Michelangelo. Can you tell us how you managed to stick around for so long?”

“It is a long story. Let me see, how can I simplify it for you? Alchemy is a precursor to chemistry. While there is a significant scientific component involved in the pursuit, there is an equal focus on magic. And while I realize alchemy is now a nearly-defunct practice, I can attest to the fact that it is, indeed, a fruitful and viable endeavor. Several centuries ago, I succeeded in conquering an alchemist’s two greatest challenges—finding an elixir of immortality and transmuting invaluable metals into untold riches. It has made for a long and rewarding life.”

“It seems like things might get boring after living that long. Do you find yourself running out of things to do?”

“If only you knew how humorous that statement is. While I was a burgeoning artist in Florence, I had the good fortune of being employed by the Medici family. My work and my loyalty to them yielded a mutually-beneficial agreement. While outwardly it would appear I was creating works of art for the family in exchange for their patronage, I was in fact serving as a bodyguard of sorts. And because this became such an intimate and lucrative partnership, I took a vow to always protect the family. It was because of the Medici patronage that I had the ability to conduct my alchemical research, so it was only fitting that I devoted myself to a perpetual defense of the family. I took a solemn vow. Hence the formation of the Medici Protectorate. Every generation since that time, I chose an elite class of warriors to protect the descendants. All these years later, the Notaro family—four daughters—are the lone survivors. With the Italian government currently in turmoil, the country is on the brink of revolution. Heirs of a powerful former ruling family would be ideally poised to take control and seize power. A nefarious faction has learned of their existence and is in pursuit of them, wanting to control them for its own benefit or eliminate them outright. I have chosen four men to be the Notaros’ guardians and several more men to serve as their support.”

“Um… devil’s advocate here, and all that. Has anyone considered what the girls might want in all this? I mean, maybe they don’t want to play princess Barbie. Maybe one of them wants to become a heart surgeon or something.”

“Of course their feelings have been considered. To the extent they are relevant, anyway. If any of the Notaro women was interested in ruling Italy, I would do everything in my power to make it so. But none of them wants that. They all work for their father’s building company and are quite happy in their respective fields. Control of any country is unappealing to them. I have even gone so far as finding a replacement for them—someone who is smart enough and benevolent enough to rule Italy for the good of the people. But until we are able to seat him at the head of the government, the Notaro women will be in danger. That is why they are in seclusion. I would like nothing more than to allow them their freedoms, but it is not safe for them to be in public, particularly on their own. That is why I have opened my homes to them and have assembled the family and their protectors under one roof. Only with constant protection will they be safe. And before you launch into a feminist lecture about the power of strong and independent women, let me stop you. This isn’t about damsels in distress and barbarian men thumping their chests to display their dominance. I have seen it. One of the benefits of my alchemical rituals was the creation of marble daggers which grant their wielders’ powers. One of my powers is foresight, and I have seen the future. The women are in danger without this protection. They, the country—the entire world—are in danger. The Notaros may not like being sequestered, but their discomfort is far better than the alternative.”

“Okay, so you miracled somehow that they’re going to come around. You know these are women we’re talking about, right?”

“I am aware, yes. At one time or another, each of them has escaped. And every time, to nearly disastrous consequences. That is why I found Carmen Scalzotto. He is an activist and a scholar—someone who will be an excellent ruler and can take the burden off their shoulders. But there is only so much I can do, and these confounded women are making things harder. They want to go home, the Brotherhood wants them to be happy, and now we have to protect the Notaro family in addition to Scalzotto. My resources are unimaginably large, but they are not infinite. We are spread thin. Too thin. It is time to put this challenge to rest once and for all, or I will not be able to protect… everyone.”

“So it’s not just fulfilling your vow. You care about the girls, but also want to keep Italy in the right hands. Hands you selected.”

“My feelings are immaterial. And at this point, so is my vow. Do you understand what will happen if this particular evil cabal assumes control of Italy? It will not mean the destruction of one country or even the entire European continent. Dictators have attempted to conquer the world before. Some have even come close, but they have always been stopped. That will not be the case this time. The world has never seen a mind so keen, so devious. So bent on control. If this organization wins, it will be unstoppable. It will mean global domination. Life as we know it will cease to exist.”

“Got it. So our best chance of saving the world involves protecting the Notaro sisters from the bad guys, but all you’ve assigned to the job are four brothers?”

“Very special brothers, hand-picked by me. I adopted them, groomed them, trained them. I used my sculptural skills and alchemical rituals to create special daggers which give them powers that enhance their already exceptional abilities. They are, as you say, the world’s best chance.”

“Daggers might be kind of cool, but we have explosive drones, rocket launchers, and things out there today.”

“Do you think a man can live as long as I have and not know the wonders of modern technology as well as what resides in the hearts of men? The marble came from my personal quarry. Each stone color taps into cosmic powers and provides the wielder with unique abilities. I spent years perfecting the rituals. Colors, materials, herbs, words, science—you cannot conceive of the time and effort put into these weapons. Nor can you comprehend the grueling preparations these warriors have been through. I have watched one of my sons after another give himself over to his calling and master his powers. Only Roberto has yet to fully embrace his gifts. And his are the most important of all. If he does not succeed in becoming one with his weapon and embracing his abilities, all hope is lost.”

“Roberto? You mean Coz, right?”

“Yes. Roberto Cozza.”

“Okay, so let’s project that Coz comes to terms with his powers. What happens next?”

“The Medici Protectorate has spent centuries watching and waiting. Defending. If I can get all four of the Brothers ready—and that means Roberto must come fully into his powers—then we can go on the offensive. We can bring the fight to… well, who leads the cabal is not the point, is it? Suffice it to say, I have known this man for a long while and he is formidable. The only way we can win is to instigate the final battle. And win it.”

“It’s all kind of sad in a way. These girls don’t want what their destiny provides. These brothers have been forced into this life and molded into warriors when they might have chosen different paths for themselves. And an old acquaintance who let you down can’t be trusted. Seems to have all the makings of a Greek tragedy.”

“We are not Greek, Miss Burton. We are Italian.”

“You’re something, all right.”

“I believe I have said enough to satisfy Carmina. If you do not object, I will take my leave now. There is still much work to be done.”

“No. No objection. You’ve given us plenty to think about. Thank you for visiting with me today. Any closing remarks for our listeners?”

“Your very lives are in danger. Whether you believe in alchemy or not, this is happening. And whether you believe in a higher power or not, you might want to pray for our success. Good day, Miss Burton.”

“You can read more about Michelangelo and the brotherhood in the Medici Protectorate Series, by Staci Troilo. Book four, Tortured Soul just hit the shelves.

“Make sure to use those sharing buttons on your way out. It really helps my guests and their authors out. I know Staci and Michelangelo would do it for you. For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

Protection is safety. Until it stifles.

After months of clandestine battles, the Brothers of the Medici Protectorate finally know who is responsible for the assassination attempts on the Notaro family, the secret descendants of the Medici line. And they’ve never faced such a formidable foe.

Roberto Cozza–Coz–faces this new reality with surprising pragmatism. His powers may make the difference in winning their covert war–if only he can master them in time. It would just be so much easier if he could get his emotions under control, but neither his Brothers nor their charges are making things easy on him.

Toni Notaro appreciates the security provided by the Brothers, but she knows she has her own role to play–and it terrifies her. She is the missing link in Coz mastering his emerging abilities, yet she struggles to bridge the gap between what he needs and what she can offer.

As the Brotherhood hurtles inexorably toward the climactic final showdown, Coz and Toni must find the strength within themselves and each other to master the secrets of his powers, or risk death and defeat for all they hold dear.

Universal Purchase Link: https://books2read.com/STtorturedsoul

 

Staci Troilo writes because she has hundreds of stories in her head. She publishes because people told her she should share them. She’s a multi-genre author whose love for writing is only surpassed by her love for family and friends, and that relationship-centric focus is featured in her work.

Web | Blog | Tortured Soul Info | Medici Protectorate Info | Amazon Page | BookBub | Goodreads | TwitterOther Social Media Links

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War of Nytefall: Lost

Glory to the Princess General!

Cover Art by Alison Hunt

As the Vampire Civil War of Windemere rages on in the shadows, a mysterious girl appears to deliver mayhem to both sides.

Rumors of old-world vampires disappearing and mortals being attacked by an army of humanoid monsters have reached Clyde’s ears. Still learning how to rule the city of Nytefall as a strong, but fair leader instead of a vicious warlord, the former thief assumes he has rogue agents on his hands. Instead, his people stumble upon Lost, a teenage Dawn Fang looking for her father and aided by a decrepit bunny that might be an animated corpse. Bounding from one side of the Vampire Civil War to another, this carefree girl will turn out to be more trouble than she looks as all of the demons of her past emerge to get what they have been promised. Yet, her chaotic actions are nothing compared to the secret of her creation, which will change the very fabric of the Dawn Fangs’ world.

It is time for the womb-born to be revealed.

Book Excerpt: Lair of the Thief

The four-story building looks no different than those around it, except for the window shutters being on the inside. A winged hound statue sits on the flat roof and leans over the eave, its eyes locked with a matching piece across the street. Clyde stares up at the red-eyed decoration while blindly waving to those who excitedly greet him. Licking his lips, he kneels in front of the door and picks the lock in a few seconds. He still pushes it open as carefully as possible in case there is a chain, which he snaps with a simple flick of his finger. The vampire slips inside and nearly bumps into a pile of bags that are leaking silver coins. Closing the door behind him, Clyde is amazed at all of the treasure that is left in the hallway and rooms. A bedroom to his right is filled with jeweled armor that nobody would wear for battle, the metal visibly fatigued from having so many gems fused to its surface. Moving without a sound, he takes in the sight of jewelry hanging from hooks and goblets meticulously stacked to the ceiling. He stops at the entrance to what used to be a bathroom and has now been turned into a storage place for a ten-foot tall fountain that once stood in a Gaian courtyard. Heading for the second floor, Clyde can see that the nearby kitchen has been left untouched by the widespread hording as well as uncleaned. A sniff of the air tells him that the mess is recent and is a combination of chocolate and hot sauce. Unnerved by the unfamiliar pairing, he moves with more caution and keeps his right fist ready to strike.

Reaching the third floor, Clyde hears the tinkling of coins falling and makes his way to the end of the hallway. He is about to enter the room when it finally dawns on him that he probably should have knocked before entering the house. The former thief scratches his head and turns towards the stairs only to look back at the door. With a shrug, Clyde creates an illusion of a loud bang at the front door and leans against the wall. It is only when he glances at the floor that he spots discarded clothes on the rug, including a hydra-skin jacket. Before he can hide or move for the stairs, the door opens and Mab walks out. Muttering curses, the brown-haired Dawn Fang is completely naked and fails to notice her old partner until she is halfway through with putting on her underwear. Neither of the vampires are sure of how much time has passed as they stare at each other in horror and discomfort. Clyde regains his senses and opens his mouth to talk, but he is immediately blinded by a clawed swipe to the face. He slumps to the floor as the burglar gathers her clothes and rushes back into the room, the door slamming hard enough to knock over several teetering piles of treasure throughout the house.

“What the hell, Mab!?”

“Don’t barge into my house!”

“First of all, I broke in. Second of all, are you bathing in coins?”

“I was counting my latest haul.”

“Why were you naked?”

“It’s hot in here!”

“Then open a window.”

“And let a burglar sneak in?”

Get War of Nytefall: Lost on Amazon for $2.99!
Add it to your Goodreads To-Read Lists!

*****

Start the adventure from the beginning with War of Nytefall: Loyalty!

Cover Art by Alison Hunt

Interested in more Windemere? Then don’t forget to check out Charles E. Yallowitz’s first series: Legends of Windemere

All Cover Art by Jason Pedersen

About the Author:

Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After his wife decided that she was tired of hearing the same stories repeatedly, she convinced him that it would make more sense to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house under orders to shut up and get to work, Charles brings you Legends of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you, and his wife is happy he finally has someone else to play with.

Blog: www.legendsofwindemere.com
Twitter: @cyallowitz
Facebook: Charles Yallowitz
Website: www.charleseyallowitz.com

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It’s a book!

Voyage of the Lanternfish is a book. Okay, officially it’s a draft, but spot me some of the emotion of finishing the damned thing for a day.

I could have easily finished yesterday. I was on a roll, but my wife got home from work, and with two more days off I wasn’t worried.

Some of you like to keep score, so it’s at 105, 503 words. This will likely go down in my editing phase. That makes for about 1500 words before I called my parents this morning.

My cool new monster did his job, and the pirates freed him to terrorize a small village somewhere. I think his abilities are pretty cool, and hope my readers will too.

In typical fantasy fashion, the girl is rescued, the enemy is smited smitten, and the ship is sailing over the horizon.

I also managed to shave the girl’s head because of lice, and embarrassed the captain a bit in front of his men.

Now it needs to rest. It goes in the fermenter for at least two weeks while I regroup and work on other things. Then I can start those editing passes. I’m sure the Raven of Doubt is already circling over the writing cabin in anticipation.

I dropped a couple of scenes, because I believe in short denouements. One involved the discovery of a sea battle gone wrong, and another involved a chipped tooth from blowing a conch shell horn. That was a minor character, and he hasn’t earned the page time.

I assembled an upcoming Lisa Burton Radio interview, then got it scheduled. I followed that up by writing a shtick for another one and got it sent to the author. Lisa still needs guests, so if you’re interested drop me a line. I’m working into September right now.

I think I’m done today. I’m up tomorrow at Story Empire, and may write a companion piece to that post over here tomorrow night. If I do, I’ll link to SE from here.

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Filed under Writing

Kinda quiet around here lately

Must be summer. Everywhere I pass through on the internet has been pretty quiet. This includes blogs and social media too. Summer is usually like this, but it’s pretty noticeable this week.

It’s the work week right now, so I don’t have a ton to say. I did a bit of interesting research. It may not make its way into the current story I’m writing, but it might. If it does, I may change it up do one degree or another. It’s fiction, I’m allowed to do that.

The topic was black magic in Sri Lanka. I’ve dug into voodoo, hoodoo, and witchcraft over the years, but nothing from the Pacificish area.

Most of their practice seems to center around curses. These are more public than I expected them to be. Basically, you go to a temple, tell the priest what you want, and he sets you up.

Research indicated blessings and curses run about 50/50. There is no stigma against someone who would cast a curse. In Sri Lanka you should expect to be cursed fairly frequently.

It involves saying words upon a coconut, that’s been affixed with a burning thingie, similar to a candle. (More research is required.) Then the curser has to go outside and throw the coconut, with the flame, on the ground and smash it.

Most temples have a special rock in place for smashing coconuts. Throwing them into sand likely doesn’t produce the required result.

I’m assuming they remove the husk for this process, or it would never smash.

I had to stop to sleep, like I said, it’s still the work week. The last bit I found said there is no counter cursing. Apparently the coconuts won’t rebound upon the caster. You have to go to the temple and have it blessed away.

Honestly, it sounds like a good racket for the temple. Sell both curses and blessings, and keep that line moving.

I designed some characters once who worked upon this principle as a kind of con game, but I’ve never found a home for them. She sells curses, he sells cures… I’ll figure out something for them one day.

It’s possible to weave in some tiki masks, a flaming coconut smash and cast some kind of spell. Like I said, it’s fiction, so I can massage it a bit.

Or I could break out my old blender and some rum and invent something called a flaming coconut smash and curse myself.

Looking forward to Friday where I might find a bit more writing time.

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