Monday, March 20, 2017

Jake Forbidden Release Day & Giveaway


Forbidden: M/M LBGT Erotica Paranormal Romance

Jake Winslow's marriage to the money grubbing shrew is over. Cutting off her funds, and the simple use of the word "no" sends her packing. When he comes home from work and finds his house empty of everything, including food, he feels--liberated. 

Jake's grandmother, Jenna, calls her friend and attorney, Forrest Stout, to handle Jake's messy divorce. She can't stand Jake's soon-to-be ex-wife and is leaving nothing to chance. Only the best for her grandson, and the best is Forrest.

Forrest is a Were Tiger, and he knows "who" he is. He is an oddity in his paranormal world because he is gay. His kind mate for life, and after a recent disastrous attempt to find companionship, he has given up hope of ever finding his life mate.

From the moment Forrest meets Jake for the first time, he knows that Jake is his life mate, and he wants to run in the opposite direction because Jake isn't gay. To claim and lose a mate would spell disaster for him. How can he ask a straight man--that he wants with every fiber of his being--to conform to his way of life? He can't....

Ex-lovers, and ex-wives can be a dangerous combination. Especially when neither are right in the head....















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Stoking the Flames: 
13 Tales of Dragons, Destiny and Desire
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#comingsoon #march2016






His wife had left him. Jake wasn’t sure how he felt about it, but she was gone, that was a sure thing. And she’d taken everything; not just her things, but every stick of furniture in the house. He definitely wasn’t unhappy about that. Jake thought his wife had horrific taste in all manners of style. Jake figured that he should have seen it coming; he’d been seeing little signs that she wasn’t happy with him. Hell, he wasn’t happy with himself. But he had been trying his best to make her happy. Okay, maybe not happy, but at least make her life with him tolerable. Carol wasn’t really the nicest person in the world, nor did she tolerate fools easily. Well, not at all, and he thought she had it in her head that he was the biggest fool of them all. Jake Winslow had married his high school…Jake wasn’t sure she was his girlfriend or his sweetheart, but he did marry her when he’d been fresh out of high school. She’d told him, several times during his senior year, that if he didn’t marry her by the time he left for college, she’d not be around when he returned. Jake was never sure why he did it—he certainly didn’t love her—but she was the only woman he’d had sex with. He supposed he’d been led by his dick, as most men were. His parents had made him marry her. Jake wasn’t sure why that thought had entered his head after all these years, but he knew as surely as he was standing in his empty house that they’d made him. He hadn’t wanted to, not at all. If she’d not been there when he returned, then she’d just be gone. Pressure from his father and whining from his mother had made him do it. He was sure of that. So, fresh from his graduation he asked her to marry him, and of course she’d said yes. And the week before he left for college, they were married…right there on her parents’ front lawn. His parents had decided not to come to the quick wedding…something about contracts and money to be made. Money; he knew this was a huge factor in his father’s life. Jake had wished so many times over the last ten years that he’d just gone off to college and never returned. He might have but for the one person in his life that he loved more than he did himself—his grandma, Jenna Beck Winslow. As he made his way around the house, empty of even any foodstuffs, he thought of the things he’d have to do now. File for divorce, he supposed. Since she’d left him, he figured he’d be safe in betting that she’d gotten all she wanted from him. There really wasn’t much left for her to take anyway. He’d taken care of most of his property and stocks when she refused to sign a pre-nup as his grandma had suggested. The rest; well, he’d hidden that away as well. This house was in his grandma’s name. As were the deeds to the two buildings that he had downtown, other holdings in deals, as well as a few other things that Grandma and he held together. He’d done most of the hiding of assets several years ago, right after Carol had nearly gotten them in trouble with the IRS for not filing their taxes as she said she’d been doing. It had taken him nearly four months of working a lot of overtime and taking cases he didn’t like to pay back his grandma the money she’d generously lent him. 
  
Paying Grandma back had been the one argument he’d won with Carol. After that, he changed a lot of things. As he stood in the kitchen, he thought of the last fight that they’d had in this room not three nights ago. He’d been working late, again, and had come in this room to fix something to tide him over until breakfast. Carol had come in and started on him about money. “The checking account is empty.” He didn’t even bother looking at her. He knew it was. He’d emptied it when he’d noticed her spending had gotten out of hand. “I need you to put something in the account so that I can go to the mall tomorrow. Borrow it from that old woman again if you have to, but there has to be money in the account when I need to buy something. I’ve been invited to go to the mall with some of the girls from the country club. You know how important it is to me to keep up appearances, and besides, some of my favorite stores are running a sale. That requires money in the bank, because, in case you didn’t notice, the credit cards aren’t working either.” “I’m not borrowing money from my grandma again. She’s been kind enough to us. And the credit cards aren’t working because I canceled them. All of them.” She asked him why he’d do that. “Because, as I have told you several times over the last six months, there isn’t that kind of money coming in to cover even the minimum payment the way you spend money. You have to stop using them for every little thing you want. I’ve told you that. And since you can’t even do that, then I’ve taken control of them out of your hands.” He didn’t say for now, because Jake knew that she’d only continue to spend the money as if there were no limits. Charging things like ugly furniture that no one sat on. Dresses that would still have the tags on them when she donated them to some cause that the other sheep were into. And she’d go to restaurants and pay for everyone’s meals even though she didn’t like them any better than she did him. No, Jake had thought, she wasn’t getting any more ways to spend money.  She had growled at him, something he’d only just noticed that he thought was juvenile. “I don’t know why you’re doing this to me, but I want you to know that I do not care for it. You make enough money for me to spend a few bucks now and again, Jake. Fix this.” He told her he had. Just not the way she wanted. “I don’t care what you do, but I’m going to the mall in the morning and I’m going to use those cards. I would suggest that if you don’t want me going to jail, because I will throw the fit of all fits, then you’d better make this right.” He’d finished making his sandwich and sat down at the table. Even before he could pick up his dinner of cold roast beef on a hotdog bun, all he could find, she swiped it from the table and onto the floor. He hadn’t wanted to get into it with her, but she had left him no choice. Jake knew that shouting at her would get him nothing but a headache. Carol was ten times more stubborn than any other person he knew. He’d looked at her as she stood before him with a self-satisfied smirk on her face. “Why are you like this? Why do you treat me as if I’m nothing more than a way for you to have the things you want?” She said nothing but stared at him, tapping her foot as she’d done so many times in the past. Well, he wasn’t going to give in this time, no 
  
matter what she said or did. “I’m not going to put money in the bank so you can spend it on foolish things. Nor am I going to reinstate the credit cards so that you can run the limit to the max again. I got them paid off now, and there is no reason for you to—” “If you paid them off, then there no reason whatsoever that I can’t have them back, Jake. There are plenty of things I can buy now. The entire house could use a once over. Things are stale here. Give the cards to me and I will buy you something nice for that nasty office you work in.” He just stared at her after telling her to leave his office alone. “Jake, I’m not kidding you. If you don’t give me those cards, I’m going to leave you. Then what will you do? I should have the things I want. I did marry you.” “I married you as well, Carol. And you’re going to put us in the poor house with your total disregard to money and how it’s made. I purchased you this overpriced house that I didn’t want and the car that you seldom drive. You promised me then that you’d curb your spending. I can’t keep working like this so that you can toss our money away like you have no respect for how hard I work for it.” She simply put out her hand as if he was just going to turn them over. “I’m done. I’m not going to do this with you again.” When she left him there, he stood to clean up his mess. He wasn’t surprised when he heard the door to the bedroom slam, nor did he react when he heard her screaming. It was her way, he supposed, to make sure that everyone, including the neighbors, knew when she was displeased. They were probably used to it by now; he certainly was. Jake, as he had done for a while now, had gone to one of the spare bedrooms to sleep. He even went so far as to lock the door, and then put the dresser in front of it. He didn’t think that she’d harm him, but he didn’t want to take the chance that she’d come in and try to take whatever she found in his wallet. The cards, like a great many things he didn’t want her to have, were in the safe at his grandma’s home. And now here he was in his home with no wife, no tables and chairs, and probably not a single thing he could sleep on. Moving to the living room now he saw that she’d left him a nice note. The walls of this room were smeared with what he could only surmise was her last calling card. The note was written in spray paint all over the walls and over the fireplace. He, in a sort of disjointed way, thought about the amount of effort she’d taken to do this when he couldn’t even get her to clean up after herself in the bath. Dear deadbeat, I have found that I can no longer live under the rules that you’ve put me under. Good riddance.  Jake grinned and wished this other man, if there was another one, all the luck in the world. He was going to need it, and a fat bank account. Jake was sure that even if the man had an endless supply of money it would never be enough for Carol. He pulled out his cell phone and called the only woman he’d ever loved. His mom hadn’t ever meant as much to him as his grandma did, and he doubted if she ever would. “Carol left me.” She told him good. “Yeah, I figured you’d say that. She took everything too. I’m pretty sure if there was a mouse in the house, he’d be starved by morning. I don’t have a pot to even piss in now, and oddly enough, I don’t really care. And when I was in my bedroom a little while ago, I noticed that she fixed my suits for me too. They’re cut to shreds.” 
  
“She was a dreadful child, and she didn’t improve when she became an adult. I blame that on her parents, because they’re not much better. Frightful people.” He laughed as he sat on the stairs. “Why don’t you come here tonight? You and I will get drunk, eat some dinner, and have a good laugh over her. I don’t suppose she left you for another man, did she? That poor bastard.” “I don’t know. I think if there were a man out there that could keep up with her spending, he’d be sorry before now. Carol was mad about the credit cards.” He looked at the wall and repeated what Carol had written there. “And on a good note, I no longer have to cover up the couch when I want to sit on it…if I had a couch. I have never in all my life known a woman who had a negative sense of style like Carol has. And if there is another man, I’m betting he’ll have no idea what he’s getting himself into until it’s too late.” “Oh well, not your problem any longer, I’m thrilled to say. The girl needed to have left you a long time ago.” He agreed with his grandma. “Come over here and we’ll celebrate. I’ll have Bonny freshen your room up and we’ll have some fun. Lord knows you deserve it after ten years of hell.” “I’m exhausted, Grandma, and don’t think I have the energy to drive.” She asked him what he was going to sleep on, the floor? “I have no idea, but I’m just too tired to go out tonight. I’ll come over tomorrow and we’ll plot. I know I have to file for divorce now; I’m done with her. And hire someone good to take the case. I think her parents will want me to give her everything despite how much she already took.” “I’ll talk to my attorney. He never cared for Carol anyway after all the stories I’ve told him. He’d more than likely do it for free.” Jake laughed. “Come over, darling. I want to see you.” “I really can’t. I’m not sure I have the energy to even drive there. I’ll just find some blankets—I think there are a couple in my car—and spread them out on the floor. I’m too tired to care if I have a lot of comforts or not.” He walked to the door to go to his car even as he continued. “Tomorrow is Saturday. I’ll come over in the morning and have breakfast with you. One thing that’s good about this is that I don’t have to work myself to death to pay for her shit.” Jake looked around and shuddered. The couch in this room had been a bright green paisley. The chair a solid green that was almost blue green in color. The pillows had been plaid. He had avoided looking at the drapes, a deep blood red color that was a combination of squares and some sort of squidgy design that had made him seasick. Every room in the house was like that, brightly overdone and full of so many patterns that he never could figure out what she’d been going for. “I’m so glad that you’re looking at this as a positive thing. She was a mess and we both knew it. All right, go to sleep and I’ll see you first thing in the morning. I’ll have Cook make your favorites. Even bacon.” He laughed when she did. His grandma loved bacon more than he did. “I love you, Jake. Take care tonight.” “I will.”  As he spread out the blanket he’d unearthed from the trunk of his car, he thought of what order things had to go in now that he was alone. The house would have to go. But 
  
even as he lay down on the floor with the fireplace roaring out at him, he knew that he’d keep it. It was his after all, and Carol would be jealous that he had it.  As he lay there, thinking of his life thus far, all he could feel was relieved. He was free. For the first time in his adult life, Jake was free. Rolling to his back, he could see his life as it had played out before him. From the first moment he’d seen Carol, he knew that she wasn’t for him. There was just something so…. While he didn’t think she was evil, he’d never felt particularly safe around her. Then after Jake had done a little investigating, he knew better than to piss her off. Carol had set her sights on him for a reason that he just couldn’t understand. His family had money, that was true, but he didn’t have anything that he could claim as his own. At least not back then. He’d not even gotten a new car for graduation as she had. The car he drove was a beater that his grandma had helped him get for running around campus, and he used a four-year-old computer. Plus, he had received a scholarship to one of the most prestigious colleges in the country. Jake had worked really hard for that. After he and Carol had been married for about a month, she started coming to him about money. She needed this or that. As a student paying rent for a house while he was in college, there wasn’t enough money in the account for him to buy books and her things. She’d never let him live down the fact that he’d made her suffer by not having any money all the time. But when he’d been taken in by a very good firm, Jake thought he’d more than made up for her suffering. Jake didn’t understand most of the things that she purchased, either. Who needed ten pair of shoes when you could only wear one at a time? And why did she need a new coat for every season? What was wrong with the one that she had in her closet? Most of the time he went without one just so she’d be happy. But she was never happy, nor was she ever satisfied, he’d just realized. No matter what he did or sacrificed for her, it was never enough.  After he’d gotten out of school there were plenty of offers for him to look over. He’d been looking for stability, a good income, and a place he could like going to work for daily. A good firm that he could be proud to work for, and one that, someday, he’d be able to be a partner with. Carol had had a different outlook on his job prospects. She wanted location. An address that said she had money, or at least the appearance of it. There were questions that she had about where they’d live. How they’d live was questioned too, things such as servants, lawn service, and even limo rides. Where the closest mall was. Was there a country club membership involved? Would she be a part of the firm’s family as well, such as receiving invites to the partners’ homes? And she expected parties and shopping sprees. “I don’t think we should care about that so much just yet.” Carol had asked him what she should be caring about then. “Well, schools for our children. Where we might find the safest neighborhoods. And how quickly I can climb the corporate ladder. Mostly I think we should pay off some of our debt that we got while I was in college, and then save for a smaller house at first.” “No, I don’t want that at all. The bills? Those are your problem, not mine. You could have worked while going to college, and if you had, you’d not owe so much. Jake, if I’m 
  
going to be a lawyer’s wife, then I can expect things to go my way for a change. I catered to your needs enough while you were off studying.” She made it sound as if he’d not been working hard at his classes and had fucked around. Jake wondered even then if she realized how much things went her way now. “We’ll find us a house that I want, then you can work from there if you’d like. But I deserve a nice home, bigger than my daddy’s.” He was never sure how she was going to make that work. Nine firms wanted him to come and work for them, two of them in another state. But Carol had not only found her a house she could tolerate—her words to him when they moved in—but she also got a house much larger than they needed. She called it their starter house, whatever the hell that meant. Lucky for them, or at least him, it wasn’t far from his grandma’s, and he could go see her whenever he wished. Jake realized that he wasn’t going to get any sleep with his mind so busy, so he pulled out the laptop from his briefcase and turned it on. As he searched for things to fill his home, he found himself looking on sites for furniture that his wife might have wanted. So, with a huge smile, he put in searches for things that he might like. By the time the sun was coming up, not only had Jake filled two rooms of the house, but he’d found that he was having fun. By the time he made his way to his grandma’s house, he was actually giddy with contentment. ~~~ Carol smiled when she thought of her husband. In a few days she’d call him, find out how much he was suffering, and then tell him that she’d take him back. But under her terms. There would be no more of his cutting off her spending. It was her right to spend as much money as she wished, and he should have realized that before now. Sitting on the large bed that had come with the hotel she’d set up for herself, Carol knew it was just a matter of time before he’d come to his senses. Jake was a nice man, but nice men finished last. Carol was going to have to teach him that lesson sooner or later. “Carol, do you think this is the smartest move you can make right now with Jake? I mean, he is due for his annual bonus, you told me. Had you waited for that, you could have set yourself up nicely instead of borrowing from me to finance this idea you have.” Carol told her mother that it was in the bag. “If you say so. I think he might like you being gone. Your father and I certainly are glad to have you gone from our house.” “What a thing to say to me, Mother. You have always been so mean to me. Why is that? I think you’re just jealous, aren’t you? But about Jake, I’m betting he’s already missing me. I can just see him now, wandering around the house sobbing for me. Wondering what it is he’s going to have to do to get me back. Well, it’s going to be different, that’s for sure.” She wasn’t sure about the sobbing part, but she knew that he’d take her back in a heartbeat. The man wouldn’t be where he was right now without her. “Jake will do just what I tell him to do. I know that he’s had some rough times of late what with all those charge card bills that he had to pay off, but I’m sure by now that he’s thinking what a mistake he made in cutting me off. I have him wrapped around my little finger.” 
  
Her mother huffed at her. Carol wondered why she’d come to see her when all she had to do was give Carol some money and her credit card. But she hadn’t. Her mother was very untrusting too. Carol glared at her mother, wondering how on earth she’d had such a horrible person in her life all these years. Carol thought they’d all be better off if she would just die. Or be killed. That would be a better pay off in the insurance for her daddy. “In the meantime, I’m paying for this room and the storage units you had to have to store all that crap in. Why on earth you had to take everything is beyond me. Or for that matter, why you’d want to. It’s the ugliest shit I’ve ever seen. If I were Jake, I’d be pissed about you buying it in the first place. Were you trying to prove some point by going out and finding things that no human would possibly want in their garage, much less their home?” Carol waved her mom off. There was no accounting for some people’s tastes, she thought. “Carol, he might not care a fig that you’ve left, have you thought of that? You said yourself that he’s been cutting you off more and more all the time. Perhaps he’s finally gotten sick of you spending all that money. You nearly ruined him once; perhaps he’ll be thrilled to death that you’ve finally left and taken those things with you.” “Mother, you just don’t understand our relationship. Once he sees the error of his ways, he’ll be running back to me. You’ll see. I’ll call him on Monday and then you’ll see that I’m right. He might even be calling me before then. Jake isn’t all that smart, and he won’t be able to fend for himself in that big empty house without me there to guide him.” Actually, Carol was surprised that he’d not called her last night or this morning. Surely he’d seen what she’d done to him. At the very least, he would’ve seen the note she’d taken the time to leave him. “I had to take a stand in this. It’s the only way that he’s going to learn anything.” “He’s not stupid, Carol. Jake is a smart man, and I think you’re overestimating this hold you think you might have over him. As I said, he’s more than likely dancing a jig around the room and buying things that he likes and not you.” She asked her mother what she was talking about. “You think that you have him by the balls. I’m pretty sure, since he’s cut you off so nicely, that he has taken them back and will use them. I don’t think you realize what a bitch you’ve been to him.” “Mother, if you can’t be nice to me in my time of need, then perhaps you should just go home. I’m settled now. But the next time I want you to bring me money and a credit card, just have one of the servants do it. Or Daddy.” Her mom huffed again. “Why are you always treating me like I’m the bad guy? Jake just needs to learn that I’m the best thing that has ever happened to him. Once he does, then things will start to go back to the way I want them. No more cutting me off just because he said. I’m a grown woman, and have needs that he doesn’t understand.”  “Carol, I think he understands you more than even you do. As I’ve said time and time again, the man could have done much better than you.” Her mother had always been so jealous of her, of her beauty, her husband. Even the way she decorated. “I’m going home. But as I told you when you called, I can only pay for you to stay here for two nights. I don’t know why you have to have the best of everything. Had you gone cheaper, you could have had—” 
  
“I do not do cheap. I’m an attorney’s wife. I should have better.” Her mom said something as she was moving out the door but Carol decided to ignore her. “If I need to stay more than you paid for, I’ll let you know. I still don’t know why you’ve put a limit on my trying to get my marriage to work.” Two nights away from her would be just what Jake needed to get his head on straight. The nerve of the man thinking he could just cut her off after everything she’d done for him. And the sooner he figured out that he needed her around, the better he’d be. Laying back on the bed, she thought of the things she was going to do once she was back to the house.  “I’m going to sell off every stick of furniture that was in there and start over. The house needs a fresh look anyway.” She’d thought about just setting it on the side of the road when she’d left him, but was afraid that he’d just lug it back in after she was gone. He’d do that too, embarrass her like that. “Then I’m going to have the pool enlarged, and we’re going to have a staff too.” She didn’t swim, didn’t even know how, but her parents didn’t have a pool so she wanted one. And the staff would make her day so much better. Just being able to say that to someone… “I have to talk to the staff,” or “The staff has been so much trouble lately.” It excited her to no end to think of someone asking her about how many she had.  They’d had staff at first…well, someone to cook for them. There had been cleaning personnel as well. A woman and her daughter had come in twice a week to dust and run the vacuum. But after the first large purchase that she’d made to redo the living room, he’d cut even that off.  The cook; Carol couldn’t even remember why they’d left, but Jake had gone on for over an hour about how she was to treat people that worked for them. Carol thought that staff, no matter what they did for her, needed to cater to her needs more than she did theirs. Thoughtless people. They needed to learn their place, and they would when she was back in charge. The phone ringing startled her. As she picked it up, thinking it was her mother, she snapped at her to leave her alone. The silence at the other end made her pause. When she asked who was there, she was greeted with male laughter. “I’m Forrest Stout. You must be Carol Lane Winslow.” She said that she was just Carol Winslow. “For now. I’m calling on behalf of Jake Winslow. He would like to set up a meeting with you in the near future.” “You tell him when he cuts me off, I cut him off. And what do you mean, for now?” The man laughed again and she positively abhorred him. “Who are you anyway? One of his buddies from work? Never mind. You tell Jake that I will come home when he has his priorities right. If you’d like to take him my demands, I can read them off to you. There won’t be any more cutting me off. I demand that—” “No, I won’t be taking him anything of the kind. But as for being his friend, I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting Jake, but I think, just because he left you, I could be his best friend. I have, however, spoken to his grandmother. Jenna and I go way back.” Carol didn’t care. She didn’t care for the elderly Winslow any more than she did Jake’s parents. 
  
“What time can you meet with us, Carol? I’d like to get this over with for him so that he can move on with his life.” “I’m not going to meet with him at all until I get some reassurance that what I want is taken care of. You tell him that.” He said that he would. “Aren’t you even going to ask me what I want? And I don’t appreciate you cutting me off. I don’t know who you think you’re talking to but—” “No, I’m reasonably sure neither of us want to know what you might want. And I’m also sure I’ve got you figured out. Oh, and while I have you on the phone, you should know that the locks have been changed on the house and the garage that you shared with Jake. Also, the things that you have in storage, they’re being removed even as we speak and moved to the address that you put on the receipt. I’m sure your parents are going to just be thrilled. You have a nice day.” She was still standing there holding the dead receiver when she thought of what he’d said to her. Why would Jake change the locks? Was he afraid of someone robbing them? There wasn’t shit in the house. That, to her, was locking the barn door after the horse got out. Or something like that. Her dad said that all the time, and she was happy to think that she knew that one. Also, what did he want a meeting for? Why not just have her come back to the house? She put the receiver in the cradle of the phone and sat on the bed. She wondered too what he’d said about the storage and how that would make her parents happy. Her mother wasn’t getting her things. “What are you up to, Jake?” She thought about calling him, asking him straight up what he was doing, but that would interfere with her plans. He was going to beg her to come home, and her calling him wasn’t on her list. “You aren’t playing by my rules, Jake, and that will only make this harder on you.” She went to the lovely desk that hadn’t been in the room when she’d gotten there. A few well-placed calls, everyone understanding that she was a lawyer’s wife, had not only gotten her the desk, but also free usage of the mini-bar.  The Jake list, as she’d begun to call it, was pretty good if she did say so herself. There were some things marked off on it already. And things were going along just the way she wanted them, also in the order that she wanted them. Carol was looking at number six that was as yet still unmarked. He should have called her by now. Again, he wasn’t doing things the way she wanted them. Number one had been having the house emptied. It had been difficult for her to find a mover that would do it all in one day. But her daddy had come through for her on that. He’d hired two firms to come in and take over. Of course she’d lied to Daddy, telling him that there were bugs in the house and that her lovely things were going to be ruined if they didn’t get them out of the house, and he’d done it.  Her mother had shown up at her door while she was working on number two. Leave Jake a note. “What are you up to, Carol? You can’t have Jake’s permission to do this to his home.” She turned to her mom and glared. “You’re going to regret this.” “No I’m not, I have a plan. And since this is my house, I don’t need his permission, nor do I care if he has an opinion concerning my actions. This is all his fault anyway.” 
  
She’d been thrilled to death to show her mother her list, and all she did was tell her she was ill-advised if she thought this was going to work. “Of course it’ll work. I always get what I want.” “You’ve never gone this far before. I’m pretty sure that he’s not going to do what you want this time, no matter how many lists you have and whatever order you put them in. It’s bad enough that you’ve treated this man so poorly all these years, but to do this, to destroy his home.... Carol, I never thought I’d say this to my own child, but you’re not right in the head.” Number three had been harder to get than she thought it would. Her mom didn’t like to part with money any more than Jake did. But in the end Mother had put her up in a hotel. It was her plan to go live with her parents for a few days, but her mother had said no and had more than likely convinced Daddy that it was not a good idea. She was going to have a long talk with him once she was back in her home and with Jake. Mother was starting to get on her nerves, and she was sure her daddy would fix it.  Number four had been put in motion the moment she was set up in the hotel. Make sure that her friends knew where she was and why. Well, her version of why she was out of her home. She’d told them that she and Jake had had a terrible fight and she’d left him until he could cool down. That hadn’t gone as well as she’d planned either, now that she thought about it.  Not a single one of her friends had been sympathetic to her. She’d expected them to rally around her, bad mouth Jake and his treatment of her, but not one of them had. Two had said they were too busy to talk and had hung up. Mercedes, the one that she’d thought the most of, who also had the most money of all her friends, had told her she’d be lucky if Jake didn’t divorce her on the spot. And that she’d not blame him one single bit. The others hadn’t taken any of her calls. Carol thought that since it was late in the year a lot of them had gone out of town. That had to be the reason. Then there was number five. Five had been a spur of the moment add-on to her list. And possibly the worst thing she might have done. At least to the standpoint that it had gotten her the most grief. People weren’t as receptive to her story as she’d hoped they’d be. Going to the newspaper to tell them that Jake had hit her had been a huge undertaking. It had required her to pinch her mouth until it was puffy, and to wear dark glasses when it wasn’t too terribly bright outside. Twice she’d walked into a wall, and once had tripped over the curb.  And for all that, she’d been humiliated once she’d entered the big building. Three of the people that had agreed to talk to her told her she was full of shit, and one of them had even told her she was lucky that he’d not hurt her worse. Carol tried to tell them that they didn’t know Jake as she did, and was left in tears after they made fun of her.  Now here she was on number six, and she’d hit a wall. There had been no calls from Jake so that she could execute that part of her plan. She was going to tell him, no matter what he said, that she wasn’t going to live like he’d wanted her to. She was going to tell him that she needed money to make her life better. That there had to be changes, too, in how they lived. Not only would there be a staff for her to order around, but she wanted 
  
a gardener as well as a limo driver. Each of her bullet points were left unchecked because her husband hadn’t called.  “Damn it, Jake, what are you up to? And what is taking you so long to do what I need for you to do?” As she paced the room, she tried to think of reasons that he’d not called. His phone was dead? Not likely. He was the only person she knew that could go days on a single charge. He just never used his phone like normal people did. Did he forget her daddy’s number? No, she’d made sure that it was programed into his phone the moment he’d gotten it. There wasn’t any reason she could think of that he’d not have been able to call. That man that had called, Stout, he alleged he’d talked to Jake. She knew that had to mean that his phone was still working and it was charged. They didn’t own a house phone, again because Jake said it would be a waste of money, so that couldn’t be it. Then she wondered if he was working late again.  Jake did work on Saturdays a great deal. She thought it had been because he was going to ask for an increase on the limits on his cards, but then he’d gone and canceled them all. But even working on Saturday didn’t negate the fact that he should have called her. Nothing was as important as him calling and begging her to come home. His calling was the thing that was going to get her what she’d wanted. Carol decided that she was going to make him suffer more for this, and smiled as she added that to her list.   














Monday, March 6, 2017

Brayden The Stanton Pack Release Day & Giveaway





Dane had no idea who she was. She'd been shot and couldn't even remember who she was hiding from. All she did know was she needed help, and when Julian Stanton found her, he took her to his family.

Brayden Stanton was just tired of everything. It was time to leave Africa and go home to family. He called his dad to tell him that he was fed up with the job and he was on his way home, and he was bringing a fiancée with him. She wasn't his mate, but he was going to make it work. He realized his mistake the moment he proposed.

Danger comes at every turn. The women in Brayden's life are surrounded with it. Both are lethal, but one has Brayden's heart from the beginning. The question is, can the family survive it?









Amazon UK  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Brayden-Stanton-Pack-Erotic-Paranormal-Shifter-ebook/dp/B06W9M3ZLH/ref=sr_1_3_twi_kin_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1488742876&sr=8-3&keywords=Kathi+s+barton


Kobo  https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/brayden


IBooks https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/brayden/id1211547964?mt=11

SmashWords https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/707777

PaperBack  https://www.amazon.com/Brayden-Stanton-Pack-Erotic-Paranormal-Shifter/dp/1629896438/ref=sr_1_2_twi_pap_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1488753624&sr=8-2&keywords=Brayden+by+kathi+s+barton










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Chapter 1  
She sat up, then promptly leaned over and threw up twice. The first time she’d woken up, her head had hurt so badly she was sure something was stabbing her there. But one touch to her head had her fainting away again. Lying back down, she lay there trying to make the sick feeling in her head go away. Touching it gingerly, she felt the blood there again and the slice along her head, but there wasn’t any memory of how it had gotten there. Nor—and this frightened her more than the head wound did—who or where she was.  Jane Doe. That’s what she’d been referring to herself as since she’d awoken the second time. It had been dark where she first holed up. Not that the daylight she had now made things any clearer for her. Looking around from her position on the floor, she realized that she might be in some really old building that hadn’t seen a broom or dust rag in a very long time. Slowly she rolled to her back, closing her eyes so she wouldn’t get sick again. “You need help, girl.” She had also started talking to herself, she realized, and wondered if that was new or something she did all the time. Asking herself questions about the things she did know about herself didn’t ring any bells either, but she listed them now. “You’ve been shot and wounded. You’re female, and you’re smart enough to know that hiding out was the best course of action for yourself. And you carry a gun.” She wrapped her fingers around the gun that hadn’t left her side since she woke, and found it tucked tightly against her belly. It didn’t feel foreign to her, but like something that she wore as routinely as she did a shirt or socks. There was a holster for it, but the gun hadn’t been in it like it was now. Leather and steel, it had been strapped to her waist with one full magazine. Searching for any kind of identification hadn’t netted her anything. She had found a wound in her leg that had bothered her for a little bit, but not nearly like her head did. As she lay there, she thought of what could have happened to her and why. What was she that would make someone shoot her? Jane didn’t want to think that someone was out to kill her, not yet at any rate. “Was I a victim of a robbery gone bad? But if someone robbed me, wouldn’t they have taken the gun too?” Her head began to pound again so she left that thought alone for now. “I need to get someone to help me. But who?” Sitting up slowly, she felt her belly lurch again. Whatever had happened to her, it wasn’t going to get any better by just sitting around waiting to have some sort of epiphany. She had a feeling that when she did recall what had gone down, she wasn’t going to be any happier than she was with not remembering.  Standing was harder than sitting up, she soon discovered. Hanging onto the walls for support, her knees were weak and her hands shook. She could only hope that she was on a lower floor in the building, because she was sure that she’d never make stairs work for her. And when she saw them, all four flights, she sobbed like a baby. Nothing, she realized, was going to be easy about this. At least there was a handrail. 

She had no idea how long it took, but she was on the last level when she heard cars. No people as yet…she’d not encountered anyone on her way down. She had to rest, so crawling behind the stairs, she found a nice cubbyhole and closed her eyes. It might be just a few feet from her, but freedom and perhaps answers were going to have to wait. She was simply too weak to walk even the few feet to the door. What if—and this had bothered her with each landing that she’d encountered—what if they were just waiting for her to come out so they could finish the job? Darkness was coming on once again when she woke. She was getting sicker. Her belly was empty of whatever had been in it before, but it didn’t stop her from throwing up. The bile was hot, and she was getting weaker each time she got sick. Help was going to have to come soon or she knew she’d be dead. Standing this time took her to the floor again. On her knees, all she could think about was that she was going to die, right here, and no one would ever know…if there was anyone to mourn her death. Lying down, Jane closed her eyes and rested. It was nearing light again when she finally made her way out of the building. Her sleep had been fitful and unrestful, but she wasn’t as sick this time when she moved. It was either because she was too far gone or she was getting better, which she doubted.  There wasn’t anyone around except for a single truck that was idling nearby. As she staggered to the street, holding onto the walls as she went, she wondered who would be stupid enough to let a nice vehicle like that sit running unattended. Just as she was going to step out of the alley she was in, a slamming door had her turning to look. It was too fast. Her head spun dizzily and she nearly fell again. As she held on to the overturned trash can beside her, she tried breathing in her nose and out of her mouth to slow the pain down, as well as to keep her belly from churning up again. For whatever reason the thought of being caught—at what she had no idea—but being caught or captured terrified her. “Miss? Are you all right?” She wanted to scream at him that she wasn’t fucking all right, but just nodded. “I’m sorry, but I don’t think you are. Did you know that you’re bleeding from your head and leg?” “It won’t stop. Every time I wake up, it’s bleeding again.” He might have said something, but she had to puke again and gagged twice before she laid down. “I think I’m dying.” “I’m going to call an ambulance.” She screamed no at him, but must have blacked out for a bit. When she woke this time, she was in a moving vehicle. “You fainted, so I thought it was the perfect opportunity to get you to someone. But I won’t call the police. I have no idea why I didn’t, but I wanted you to know that.” “I don’t know who I am.” Trust. She didn’t have any clue why she trusted this man, but she did. “I don’t know where I am, how I got here, or how I was hurt. I’m at your mercy, it seems.” “Julian. Julian Stanton.” She asked him who that was. “Sorry. Me. I’m Julian Stanton. I’m taking you to my home…well, to my parents’ home. My father is a doctor. Retired now, but a good surgeon. I let him know what was going on about the wound, as well as that you seemed to be dead set against hospitals. He also knows that you’re carrying.” 

She touched her fingers to the gun still in the holster. Touching it, like that man did, it gave her trust. Again, she had no idea why she did, but she laid her head back to rest. The trip didn’t seem to take all that long, but she might have been out for a lot longer than she’d thought. Three men were standing on the front porch when she arrived at the house with Julian. Before he opened the door or they moved, he pointed out who they were. Two brothers and a father. Then when they moved toward her and the truck, she cringed when they started to reach for her. “Let me give you something for the pain.” The elderly man smiled at her. “It’ll take you under for a bit, but that’ll be fine while I exam you for injuries. You can trust us, young lady. We’ll not harm you.” The pinch of the needle didn’t hurt, but almost as soon as he rubbed the cotton ball over where he’d injected her, Jane felt herself floating away. It was the best she’d felt since she’d awoken. Flashes of light moved over her. Strong voices were there, but no words that she could understand. And on top of it all, a woman. Her kind voice made Jane feel like she’d been bathed in sunshine. Then there was nothing. ~~~ Denny waited for his wife, Lucy, to come and assist him while Julian filled him in on what had happened and why he’d brought her to their home. Denny checked the woman’s head injury, and wasn’t surprised to find it was a bullet wound. After cleaning it as gently as he could, he started to cut away her clothing. The gun perplexed him for a few moments, but Colton, his other son who had helped bring the young lady in, removed it from her and said he’d put it in the safe for her. Next, Denny removed her shoes, socks, and another weapon inside those. Whoever she was, she was well armed. “I just heard from a man by the name of Wexton. I believe he runs the grocery store…or perhaps the library. They’re all running together lately. Anyway, I have no idea why he’d think we have anything to do with this, but he said that someone is camping out in one of the buildings in the market district. I said that Julian checked it out today and it’s nothing.” After Lucy pulled on gloves, she stood over the young woman. “Do we know anything?” “Not as yet. At least not much. GSW to the head, but I think there will be more. There is blood on her pant legs as well as her hands. I was just going to take a look now.” She helped him pulled off the tattered clothing he’d cut away. He noted the wounds they found as they took off her shirt. “Bullet on her shoulder. It looks like it might have been done before the other things, superficial. There is some bruising on her belly; boot print, it looks to be.”  Denny, with the help of Lucy, rolled the young woman to her side. Her back was covered in scars that looked as if she’d been beaten, and repeatedly. There were a few more markings, none that he could recognize right off the top of his head. But as there was nothing life threatening, he moved to her pants. His wife took over there for him so that he could stitch up her head. He was just starting when he felt Lucy’s fear and stepped back from his patient. 

“Denny, what is that?” He looked where she was pointing, careful of his hands. He had to look at it very hard until what it was came to him. He took another step back and tried to think beyond the fear. “Tell me.” “I’ve not see this mark on someone in.... I was a boy and my father had been working with one of the women in the village. He said that she was the devil’s handmaiden. Of course, as a child I believed him. But later, after doing some research, I found out that they’re people marked by another tribe…that they were supposed to be unworthy.” She asked him of what. “I don’t know. That’s all I could find. If she’s been marked like this, Lucy, she might be older than she looks. I mean, as in decades older.” “What is she doing around here?” He said that he didn’t know. “Well, we’ll fix her up, get some answers, and if we don’t like them, we’ll take care of her.” “Take care...what do you mean, take care of her? You’re not suggesting that we murder this poor child, are you?” She just stared at him with that look she reserved for their sons. “Lucy, explain yourself, please.” “Take care of her as in taking care of her. Make sure that she’s safe, well, and fed. Whatever made your mind rush to us killing her off? My goodness, Denny, you need to stop listening to those stories on the television set. Goodness gracious.”  He said he didn’t think it was that but a book he’d been reading, and moved to finish her head. “I knew I shouldn’t have gone to bed straight away after reading that book. I swear to you, Lucy, that author has some chilling thoughts going on in his head.” She told him to not read it at all. “It’s good. I want to finish it, but perhaps I’ll read only in the daylight hours. Not so close to bedtime.” They worked on her for over two hours. Under each article of clothing they removed they found more cuts and bruises. Another gunshot wound in her leg had startled him. Denny wondered why the young woman was still alive the way she’d been treated. As he was wrapping up the wound on her leg and setting it in a temporary cast to make sure it wasn’t bumped, the woman looked at him. “Hello.” She nodded, but he thought her too weak to do much more than stare at him. “You’ve lost a lot of blood so I’m giving you some fluids. The wound on your head is stitched up, but I’m concerned at how deep it is. Julian told us you don’t know who you are.” “No.” She closed her eyes and he thought her asleep again. “I don’t know anything. Where am I?” “Stanton Ranch.” She asked him what state. “Ohio. You’re just outside of Zanesville. My family and I have a nice ranch here. Not that we have much in the way of animals any longer, but we did a long time—” “I had a gun. Where...did you take it?” He told her what one of his sons had done with it. “I’d like it back please. It...I have no idea why, but it comforts me.” “All right. But I’d like to wait until you’re a little stronger. I’ve given you something for the pain, and I’d hate for someone to be hurt when you were out of it.” She nodded, then moaned. “I’ve taken care of the wounds on your body. You have one GSW to the head, another to your shoulder, as well as one in your calf. They’re cleaned up and stitched. I’ve saved the bullets for you.” 

“I don’t know what I do for a living. I might be a bad guy.” He’d thought of that as well, but had a feeling that wasn’t what had gotten her shot. “The man who brought me here, you said he was your son. Will he tell anyone where I am?” “No. He said you were inflexible about not going to the hospital, so he thought it might be safer for all of us not to tell anyone that we’d found you, nor that you were shot.” She nodded again and Denny thought for sure she was out this time.  As he and Julian moved her to the bed he had set up in his offices at home, he asked him about what he thought had happened. He told him what she’d said to him when she woke up. “You think she’s a bad guy? Or anything to do with things that go bump in the night?” Denny told his son that he didn’t. “I don’t either. She could have shot me when I came up to her at the warehouse. Granted she was weak, but I think if she were a corrupt person, she would have done it anyway.” After moving her, he sat down at the little desk that was part of each room. He didn’t use his offices much anymore…just for an occasional bump or two from one of the ranch hands. They only had a couple horses now, having sold them off a while back when he realized that he was just too old for ranching. His sons were off on their own now and Denny was proud of each of them, but he missed them when they weren’t home. He supposed it was a way of life for the elderly. Denny did a search on shootings in the area. A couple had occurred which were, he thought, too far away for the young woman to have traveled from. There was a robbery, but he wrote that off as well, knowing somehow that she might not have been involved in that either.  When Lucy brought him lunch on a tray they ate together, talking quietly about the upcoming picnic they were having, as well as Brayden’s birthday. He was a little old for having parties, but it never stopped them from having them for their boys. However, they no longer hired a clown to entertain them. “Do you suppose that he’ll even be home this year? Last year he was two days late coming home.” Brayden hadn’t been home as much as they liked, not for years now. “I miss him more all the time. I know that he’s working, but I’d so much like to have him home again.” “I’ve spoken to him a few times over the last few weeks. I guess things in Africa aren’t going as well as they had thought, and he might be able to get away for a little longer this time. Something about money troubles, as well as supplies coming up missing.” Lucy said that it would be nice to have him home. “I know, but when I talked to him, he sounded so beaten. Like he’s just tired of it.” “Well, he’s been working at building homes all over the world for others for nearly ten years now. I know as well as you that if you don’t take a break now and again, you can’t just pop back like you did before. He needs to come home and be with his family, and let someone else work for a little while. Perhaps he would do better at making money. Not that we need it, but I want him home occasionally.” Denny agreed, but he wouldn’t tell Brayden that. The boy was too stubborn about people telling him what to do. “When did he say he’d be here? Soon?” 

“In a week. I had to make him narrow it down so that we could pick him up at the airport when he arrives. But of course, then I had to tell him several times that we didn’t mind going out of our way to get him. I swear, Lucy, I think he does that to make me mad.” She laughed and said they were alike in that. “What’s that supposed to mean? I’m not aggravating.” “If you say so, love. But when you get something in your head, you’re like a dog with a bone. You’ll pick at it to death.” They both looked over at the bed when the woman moaned. “She’s going to make it, isn’t she? I mean, she won’t get weaker from this, correct? Poor thing. I wonder if whoever did this to her even cares.” “No, I don’t think so. I have no idea why, but I think they would be upset to know she’s alive. But we might have some trouble keeping her down until she heals more. And she’s asked for her gun back and said that it’s comforting to her for some reason. She seems stubborn herself, don’t you think?” Lucy pointed out that she’d not spoken to her. “That’s right. I forgot. I’m concerned about the marks on her back. What they might mean to her. Or us.” “I was going to ask you if you looked them up while you were down here, but for some reason I have it in my head for you not to. It might lead someone here.” He nodded, telling her that he’d thought the same thing. “We don’t know anything about her, Denny, but I want to protect her like she’s our own child. Why is that, you suppose?” “I don’t know. But now that you mention it, I feel the same way. And even Julian said that he had this overwhelming need to make sure that she was safe. Not well, but safe. I asked him why and you know what he said? He told me that she needed him, that he felt it.” When she left him again, taking the tray with her, he sat at his computer to play a game. It was silly, he knew, when there were plenty of game systems upstairs, but he loved solitaire and found himself thinking about the game more than what he’d been doing earlier. It was a way to ease his mind…he had been playing games as a way to relieve stress for over a decade. The computer made it so much nicer. When a small ding alerted him that he had an incoming message, he clicked on it to see what his son had to say now. Brayden had better not be changing his mind. He wanted his boy home. When it came up, he read it three times to make sure that he’d not misread it. “I’m coming home, Dad. For good. I’ve had enough.” He started typing a reply when a second message from him came up. “Would you find me a house? Not too big, but nice. With a pool. I find that I want to swim again.” He told him he’d do just that, and smiled as he wrote the rest of his answer. “Are you sure you don’t want to build one? You should be good at it by now.” “I just want to live somewhere that is a nice home without any work on my part.” Denny watched the little icon that said Brayden was still typing paused. When it came up on his end, Denny could only stare at it. “I’m getting married. After I’m home. She’s not my mate, but I need some stability in my life and she can do it, I think. At least I hope so. She’s a little on the.... You’ll understand when you meet her. I’m bringing her home with me so you all can all get to know her too. Don’t tell Mom yet. I want to surprise her.” 

He’d certainly do that, Denny thought. Not his mate, yet he was going to marry her? That made his own cat sort of curl around him in fear. It was a feeling, one that had made him become a great surgeon, that had him thinking that his eldest son was about to make the biggest mistake of his life. “We’ll talk when you get here, son. Tell me when you expect to be at the airport and I’ll be there.” He told him he should be in the United States in two days. To pick him up on Wednesday. “All right. Give me times when you get them and I’ll make sure that you and your lovely bride-to-be have a ride home.” Brayden said that he loved him and then the message box told him that he’d logged off. Denny checked on his patient then went to find his Lucy. There wasn’t any way that he was going to keep this from her, and he found that he didn’t want to. He needed someone to tell him he wasn’t nuts for feeling this way. “She’s not his mate? You’re sure that’s what he said.” Denny assured Lucy that he’d read it three times to be sure. “Why would he do a fool thing like that? Doesn’t he know what sort of trouble that can cause him when she does come along?” “He said he needs some stability in his life. And while I can understand that, I wonder if he knows he’s not going to get it. Do you think he gets what he’s doing?” She just huffed, something that she’d done all their married life when she thought he should know the answer to something. “Lucy, he’s bringing her home to meet us. Oh, you’re not supposed to know. He told me not to tell you.” “Well, I’m glad that you did. And no, I don’t think he understands what he’s doing. I can understand living with a woman if you’re lonely. I don’t care for it, but I guess I can understand. But this is at a whole new level of living with someone for sex.” Denny nodded, thinking that his wife was losing her filter more all the time when it came to talking about things. “Denny, you’re going to have to talk to him as soon as he gets home.” “I will, I promise. But I’d like to say something to you, and I don’t want you to get upset. You’ve been a little...how should I say this? You’ve been a lot more outspoken lately. Is it that club you’ve joined? The Women Over Fifty Group?” She kissed him on the cheek as she walked by him. “Lucy, you didn’t answer me. What is it about you lately?” “I’ve decided that I’m too old to be trying to please everyone.” He said that he could understand that. “And I’m not saying what I want, I just have opinions. A great many of them. But I’ve been too shy to say them. I’ve decided that I’m not going to sit in the back row any longer, but voice my opinion.”  After she left him in the kitchen, he laid his head on the butcher block they used as an island. Oh Lord, she was going to be the death of him, he just knew it. He smiled as he lifted his head. But she sure was fun now. He thought he liked this new Lucy. Going to the basement again, he sat with his patient.  Maybe, he thought, he’d take up this new habit Lucy had adopted. Saying what he wanted might be fun. Yes, sir, he was going to do that from now on instead of what people wanted to hear. He wondered what his sons would think about their new parents.   












Monday, February 20, 2017

Garth Bentley Series Release Day Final Book & Giveaway




For her loyal services to the queen, Dark is granted one wish--to be human. The problem? Dark doesn't deal well with humans. She is a warrior fae, and all she knows is how to lead armies.

Garth is the last brother without a mate, and he's in no hurry to find one. But when a fire burns his house down, he finds himself at a loss. He has never met Dark, but she has graciously agreed to put him up until he can come to a resolution with his insurance company. When they finally meet, they both know what they are to each other.

An old foe has returned to seek his revenge, and Dark and Micah are butting heads for control of the pack. Dark knows how to deal with this enemy, but Micah is standing in her way. Can they get past their differences to save the family? Or will Snyder Black fulfill his thirst for blood and revenge? Find out in the final installment of The Bentley Legacy--Garth.























Micah Bentley is a third generation cop and a panther. He always wanted to be a homicide detective like his dad, but kept getting passed up for the job because he was too good at what he currently did working the beat. Micah has a gift, he can read people's minds. Such a gift could be a help and a hindrance on a job. He could pluck the information he needs right out of someone's mind, but knowing they're guilty and proving it are two different things. But when his dad is killed off duty it has him rethinking his career choice.
Regina Webster, Reggie to her friends, is just trying to make ends meet by working three jobs to keep her head above water, and also take care of her invalid brother. She doesn't have time for socializing with bossy men like Micah Bentley who butt into her life making everything concerning her his business. She doesn't know anything about this mate thing he keeps spouting off about, she just wants him to leave her alone.Due to a random act of violence, she finds herself suddenly homeless: no home, no money, no car and suffering from a gunshot wound to boot. Reggie has no choice but to accept a helping hand from the Bentleys at―least until she can get back on her feet.Trouble has Reggie marked, and this time they take Micah's mom too. Micah knows they're in trouble, but when the bad guys don't go where they're expected it's a race against the clock...



Christiana McKenzie, Chris to her friends, was at her wits end. She and her sister, Angel, were born witches. Their mother had warned them that to use their powers would bring on another witch hunt, and they'd risk being burned, just like their ancestors. Her sister didn't heed their mother's warning and now Angel was dead. Angel had lived long enough to tell Chris that she'd left something for her with a man by the name of Bentley, then she died. Chris had to track down this Bentley no matter the cost....
Joseph Bentley almost had everything finished: the house, the barn...everything. In a few weeks it would be finished and he would be able to move into the house and get the ranch going. But the progress wasn't going fast enough to suit him?he was lonely.
Micah had come out to tell him that the sister of the girl that died to protect him was coming to see him, and he was hoping that the nightmares since the incident would stop. Micah wanted him to come out to the main house and be there when she arrived. But the limo delivered the woman to Joey's house instead of Micah's. Joey couldn't believe it, the hostile woman was his mate...and more than he could have ever hoped for....
Whether or not Chris wanted a mate or not was irrelevant, Joey wasn't letting her out of his sight. And when she found out that her mother had lied to her?she wasn't an ordinary witch?and that others would come to try to possess her. If they couldn't do that, then they would kill her to possess her powers?she needed help.
The Bentleys ban together to save one of their own, but will it be enough? Can they even fight the powerful magic that's targeting Chris and Joey?


Nolan finally had a practice of his own, and soon his brother Burke would be leaving the hospital and joining him. Now, if the rest of the family would mind their own business, Nolan would be much happier...or not. He was sulking over his dilemma when his nurse told him he had a patient, a hurt kid who wasn't doing much talking.
Rylee nearly collapsed with worry when she found out her nephew had been hurt. She wasn't sure if she was cut out to be a parent. She loved her nephew, Shane, dearly and had taken on his care when her sister died, but how she'd missed the warning signs was beyond her. He was being bullied at school daily and she knew nothing about it until he'd been cut with a knife.
"I didn't know." Her entire body sagged at her confession. "He said he had it handled. And I thought he did. It's my fault he's beaten up like this. I should have...I'm not any good at this parenting thing."Nolan reached for her just as Shane moved on the bed. He wasn't sure what the kid could do, banged up the way that he was, but as soon as Nolan touched her, he knew what she was to him. Her body, warm and strong, leaned into his even as he buried his nose into her neck. Christ, his body screamed at him, she was his. Licking her throat, tasting her, he could hear her moan, but when his head was jerked up by his hair, all he could do was stare at her.



Burke Bentley's decision to quit the hospital and go into practice with his brother was the best decision he'd ever made. With the daily pressures gone, he could do what he loved to do most --be a doctor.

Piper Cordale, Pip to her friends, just wanted to bust her friend out and go. She didn't handle people well and needed to be on her way, but fate had other things in store for her. Her friend's gorgeous doctor, Burke, insisted that he was her mate. Pip didn't have a mate, nor did she want one. The chore of breathing in and out was hard enough.

But when she saw Burke's nephew, Shane, sitting all alone, she reached out to him, and they formed an instant bond. She was fae and told the boy if he ever needed her, all he needed to do was call out and she'd be there.

When the unthinkable happens, and Shane and his brother Walter are targeted by a madman, can Pip reach his side fast enough? Is she strong enough to save them both?

The Bentleys must band together like never before to protect their young and pray that it's enough....




Coleen had heard just about all she wanted to hear from her grandmother about the Bentleys--no one could be that nice. There had to be an angle there somewhere. People just didn't help other people for nothing--not in this day and age.

Tony Bentley wasn't expecting to find his mate, and as a Were Panther he could even understand her reluctance. He was, after all, a Bentley, and the poor woman had been taken through the ringer, but she was his mate, and he wasn't about to take no for an answer.

Coleen's ex had left her in a heap of debt, and she couldn't allow herself to bring that kind of baggage into a relationship. She'd work through it somehow--without the help of the mighty Bentleys.


THE BENTLEY LEGACY
1. MICAH - http://smarturl.it/micah
2. JOSEPH - http://smarturl.it/josephBentleyLegacy
3. NOLAN - http://smarturl.it/nolanBentleyLegacy
4. BURKE - http://smarturl.it/burkeBentleyLegacy
5. ANTHONY - http://smarturl.it/anthonyBentleyLegacy









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Mystery Paperback  Winners

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For  winners if you have not gotten your signed  mystery paperback please 
contact  my PA  for info  she will have the tracking numbers 

Which I was told was mailed on Friday  so please give 7 to 10 days



I hated to see the series end I hope you enjoy Garth 

Happy Reading


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Chapter 1 
Garth watched the ticker tape that ran across the top of his laptop. He was waiting for the magical number that would make him money. Well, magical for him, he supposed. Most would find what he did boring. He supposed in a way that it was. But numbers and making money were his passion.  When the stocks that he was looking at fell to the number he’d been waiting for, he bought the nine thousand shares that were being offered up. Closing his computer, feeling pretty good about himself, he looked around the diner. As usual, it was packed. He was proud of his family. They had decided to pay some things forward and a great many people were benefiting from it. Not just with the diner, which mostly catered to vets down on their luck as well as some of the homeless around town. There was also the antique store, Barron and Bentley Antiques, the restaurant simply called Bentley’s that they all had a hand in, and Faerie Tales and Dreams, the nursery and gift shop. All the shops and places were working hard to make sure that townspeople had a paycheck if they wanted it. And a reference on their resume for those that hadn’t had a paying job for a very long time and wanted to get back into the workforce. Shane sat down across from him and smiled. He loved this kid. Being his uncle was wonderful, but he was also his friend, him and his brother Walter both. Garth asked him what was happening. “Did you know that there is this building downtown that is empty?” He nodded. Garth told him there were a lot of buildings empty, but filling up. “They are. But I’m talking about the one next to the mill. The big one that looks like it’s been empty for a long time.” “Spencer Building. When I was a kid, they used to manufacture cardboard boxes. Mr. Spencer was a good man but a terrible businessman. I think he lost everything when he tried to sell his boxes cheap to undercut the bigger companies.” Shane nodded. “And why do you have an interest in that particular place? I own it, by the way.” “Yes, I know you own it. I was wondering if you’d let me borrow it for a little while. It’ll look better when I’m done. I have a plan.” Garth asked him what it was. “My teacher said that I needed to take on a civic duty project. I asked him what that might be, and he told me that there needs to be some sort of action that makes an improvement to the city itself. It doesn’t have to be big, just a clean-up thing. There are a couple of people in my class that said they’d work with me on it.” “And these other people, are they really going to work with you, or are they just saying that so you’ll do all the footwork? I don’t mean to be crass, but you told me that most of them are lazy and do little to nothing when it comes to classwork.” Shane flushed brightly and Garth changed the subject back. “Okay, what sort of plans do you have for this place after it’s cleaned up? Ones that might benefit the community, I get that, but how?”  “Okay. There is an antique shop, bakery, restaurant, florist, as well as a couple of new shops going in the downtown area. But what we don’t have is a clothing store. And I
don’t mean new expensive things, but used…in good condition, but used.” Garth liked where this was going. “It would be a permanent place, if you let me, where people could come in and sell off items. You know, not enough for a garage sale, but too nice to just toss out.” “There was a shop in town where I went to college. They would take old bridesmaids’ dresses and prom dresses, clean them up, and resell them to kids. I think they did a booming business.” Shane said that was his plan. “So, how is this a civic duty? And that’s not to say I don’t like it, but I’m sure that someone along the line will ask.” “All the money would go for food baskets that are given away at Christmas. Buying turkeys and vegetables, as well as some warm coats for kids.” Garth loved that idea, and it would help with the community. “When the Taylor family lost their home, everyone scrambled around trying to get them a fresh start. Old couches were donated, beds and linens. I think you and I could use this place as a way to stock up on those things. Have them cleaned up and covered in the event that someone needs something.” “I’m in. But I’d like to be your partner on this. I mean, this was totally your idea after the clean-up, and I want to help with that part of it.” Shane looked like he wasn’t going to buy that. “Once this project is complete for your teacher, then you and I will put out the word that this place is here. After that, I’m sure you can have as much family as you need to help you.” “Okay. I can do that. But I want Walter to be a partner too. He’s working hard at college, and I think he’d really be a big help with what might sell or not.” Garth told him that was fine, but why would Walter be a big help? “Because he said that you’d not believe the crap that people just throw out at the end of the college year, and then more crap is brought in at the beginning. He means to figure out a way to see if he can get it donated to the shop.” “I don’t tell you often enough how proud of you I am.” Shane blushed again; the kid was going to go far in business, as well as with the women. “We have a deal. I’ll just need the names and permission from the other kids’ parents, in the event that they get hurt and need medical assistance or something. We need to be safe first and foremost.” “Dark said she’d help.” Garth nodded. “She’s really pretty now. I mean, she was before, but now as a person, she shines.”  “Pip said that she had all her magic still, and that she could even fly should she want. I’ve wanted to do that since I was a kid…fly like those superheroes do in the movies.” Shane nodded, but Garth knew he wasn’t really paying attention. “I think when I find my mate, I’m going to have her make me wings. I don’t know that she’ll be magical, but I gotta figure she will be, and have a trunk-like nose too.” “I’m listening to you. I just have a lot on my mind. How do you know if you want to ask someone out?” Garth said nothing but let Shane explain himself. “There’s this girl in my class. The end of school dance is in a few weeks, and I thought I’d ask her to go with me. I like her.” “Then that’s how you know you should ask her out.” Shane nodded, then shook his head. “You just go up to her and say, ‘Hey, would you like to go to the dance with me?’ Then go from there.”
“I don’t drive.” Garth pointed out that they could walk to school as he did now. “Yes, I know, but she’s a girl and everything.” “You don’t think girls walk?” He snorted at him. “I don’t know what you mean. If you mean that she’ll have on high heels I can understand, but what do you mean, she’s a girl and everything?” “What if it rains? Or turns really cold or something?” Garth nodded, but before he could suggest an umbrella or a coat, Shane went on with his reasoning. “She wears these pretty clothes. I’d hate to have them messed up because we had to walk to the dance.” “You’re overthinking this.” Shane said he wasn’t. “Yes, you are. You ask her out, and if the weather is bad, someone...I’ll drive you there in my car. I won’t say a word unless you ask me directly. Also, I’ll be around close in case you forget how to breathe, pretty much like you are right now.” “I’m nervous.” Garth said he could see that. “I don’t want to mess this up. I mean, she’s not going to marry me or anything, but I think the first time you’re out with a girl, it should be special. Don’t you think?”  “I do. And it will be so long as you don’t have a stroke while it’s going on. Relax. Take a breath and think of how much fun you’ll have with her, not about what could befall you.” Shane nodded, but he didn’t look convinced. “What is really bothering you?” “Sex.” Garth wasn’t sure this was an avenue that he wanted to travel. “I don’t want to have sex with her, but what if she does? I know how it works, but I don’t think knowing and doing are the same thing.” “No, not even close. And if she wants to have sex with you at her age, run. You don’t need to be hanging out with someone that would even consider it.” Shane asked how old he was when he had sex the first time. “This isn’t about me. And I’m pretty sure you already know the answer to that question, or you’d not be here busting my balls when I’m only trying to help.” “Micah said you were a lady’s man.” Garth was going to kill his brother. “Joey said that women helped you get through college on a dream. I had to look that one up. And Burke said that—” “I’m going to kill them all. You shouldn’t listen to those idiots.” Shane smiled. “All right. You ask the girl out; I’m going to be your ride and we’ll go from there. All right?” “Yes. Thank you.” Garth told him it was his pleasure. “Don’t you want to know what Grandma said about you? And Great Grandda said some pretty nice things about you and women too.” “No, I do not. And you need to hang out with other people than those perverts.” They both laughed. “I’ll get back with you in a couple of days. In the meantime, you can go ahead and start on whatever you need to do. If it helps, the faeries at my house are bored. I’m not making them enough work, apparently.” “I heard that too. You’re too clean, I was told. You even make your bed when you get out of it. For shame, Uncle Garth. Whatever did your mother do when you were growing up?” They left the restaurant together, both of them laughing and joking around. When they got to his truck, he asked the kid what his plans were. “The building. I want to get a good start on it, then I’m going home. Mom and Dad are staying in tonight.”
“If that is too tame for you, call me up and we’ll head for some pizza. But I’m betting you want to be with them.” He nodded. “All right then, I’m off to my office. Call me if you need me.” “I will.”  Garth watched Shane as he made his way to the Spencer building. After he was sure he was going to be all right, he started his truck. Then his phone dinged when the timer he’d set went off. Opening his computer again after turning off the truck, he sold the shares that he’d only just purchased, plus the three hundred that he’d picked up yesterday. “How much?” He looked at the passenger window and smiled at his grandda. “You only look like that when you’ve made some money. So tell me there, Whiz-boy, how much did you make off that thing there?” “Whiz-boy? It’s Whiz-man to you. And nearly four million. What have you been up to, Grandda? You have dust on your hat.” He took it off and slapped it against his leg a few times, then opened the door and got in. “Are we hanging out today?” “I got me a project in mind and you can help me. Oh, congratulations on the sale. I’m guessing this one is for you…or all of us?” He said him for now. “Got you a right good head on your shoulders there, boy. I’m proud of you. Go on over to the shelter. I need your help.” “All right.” Starting the truck up, he drove to the shelter. The Micah Bentley Shelter had been open for nearly seven months now, and it was helping a lot of people. “Coleen said that she’d been having some fun with the soups you asked her to make for the shelter. How’s that going?” “Right fine. Yesterday we was serving it up and nearly ran out. Then one of Pip’s buddies came by and we had more than enough. Did you know they were hanging out everywhere now?” Garth said he’d heard that too. “You got any at your house?” “Several. They’re upset with me. Apparently making my own bed is a no-no.” His grandda laughed. “And since I’m not there much lately except to sleep, I’m not giving them enough to do.” “Heard that too. You should make them a mess occasionally. When they got nothing to do, they get into mischief. Speaking of that, I want to know when you’re going to find you a mate.” Garth nearly hit the car in front of him, he was so startled by the question. “You’re the last one, and you should be finding her soon enough, don’t you think?” “I was going to put a full-page ad in the newspaper to ask where she was, but I’ve been a little busy of late. I’ll work on the wording of it today and get right on that.” Grandda glared at him. “I don’t know if you are aware of this or not, but you have five grandsons that are very happily married, and some are even giving you great grandchildren to bother. Leave me alone, old man.” “Ain’t no reason why you have to be nasty about it. I’m just inquiring.” Garth just laughed. “I tell you, you should have more respect for this old man. You might need me to hold your hand when you find her, and I might not be around. I got me things to do, you know.”
“I do. I’m betting that fishing with the kids and the rest of them is really time consuming.” He smiled when Grandda huffed at him. “And I’ve heard that you’ve been at the restaurant too, snitching food when Grandma told you to watch your weight.” “I’m watching it. I got it right where I want it.” The man wasn’t heavy, but he didn’t eat as well as he should.  They pulled into the parking lot at the shelter. “I need you to look something over for me. It’s about them computers they have set up. I’m thinking that we need a few more, but I don’t know if that’s on account’a I’m wanting more or they’re needed.” Garth knew that there was a need for them. There were only three in the place now, and one printer. It had been on his list of things to do this week, getting a couple more to put in place. But with his grandda wanting it done now, he saw no reason to put it off until Thursday, which was the day he’d scheduled for it. Garth wasn’t anal, not at all. But he did like lists. He would make one out the night before and hang it in his bathroom. Then after he was finished with his shower in the morning, he’d take it down and start on it. And if things didn’t get done that he’d set for himself to do, that would be the priority for the next day’s list. It had kept him on track all his life. After spending three hours with his grandda, he mentally moved things around in his head. It was going to be hard going tomorrow to get his list finished, but this was important. And Garth got to spend time with one of his favorite people, as it happened. His grandda was the best person he knew, next to his mom and grandma. ~~~ “Should it look like that?” Dark looked at the little man and huffed at him. “I think the directions aren’t terribly clear. What does it mean when it says that the voltage needs to be set at a right setting?” “I don’t know.” She snapped her fingers and the meal, along with the mess it had made when she’d cooked it, was gone. “I can command an army of thousands, yet I cannot make this microwave thing work for me. I will have starved for all that I have learned in the last several weeks being here.” Sitting down at her new table, she smiled when a salad of fresh flower petals appeared in front of her. Dark knew that she had to learn this thing, cooking, but it was frustrating to say the least. Then there was the fact that she was taller too. “Did you know that when you take a cleaning—a shower, I mean—it is important not to put too much of the bubbly stuff on your body? It took me nearly an hour to get it all washed off. I have learned to read the instructions on things carefully now.” Augustus laughed when she did. “I think there might still be a great amount of the stuff sticking to the walls yet. It is most troubling, this being a human.” “You are beautiful.” She told him to go away. “Do you regret your wish to be human like? I think I’d not care for it. There is much you must put on daily. I cannot fathom why a person would want to wear shoes all the time.” She looked down at her own bare feet and thought about the lovely sandals that Pip had given her. They were wonderful to put on and wear, but what made them the best
thing she’d ever found was that she could slip them off easily and put them back on when she was sitting somewhere. Her feet could breathe in them as well. “I have to work out with the army today. I hope that they are not falling behind in their duties to the family.” He told her that he’d been watching over them and they were tip-top. “Good. What do you know of the blooms? I am to understand that the queen has asked that my men help with the new births.” “Yes. She was going to send word to you today about it. The fields that were planted are nearly ready to receive her. We are nearly to our numbers from last year. If this were to keep up, in a few springs we’ll be back to a goodly number of faeries again. I am very excited for that.” She told him she was as well. “I was wondering about something, my lady. Now that you are big...I was wondering if you were going to need an assistant. Not me, but I have a person in mind to help you.” “Who?” He told her. “Why her? I mean, I don’t mind having you help me. Why is it that you don’t want to be my right-hand man?” “The queen has finally allowed some of us to marry.” She smiled at him; this was indeed good news. Dark would speak to the queen about it soon and see how that was going. “She has given us all permission to take a mate should we want. The queen said that it is good to have someone there that you can be with. I’ve asked Lilith to become my bride.” Faeries like Augustus couldn’t have children, but they could still fall in love and have a mate. All faeries were born from the flowers that came in the spring. Once the flowers had their first bloom, then the queen would come by and kiss the little blossom and a faerie would be formed. Then when the flower opened, showing the world its beauty, the faerie would be collected and taken to the top of the trees to be warmed by the sun until it was ready to join the rest of them in working on projects.  Occasionally a few would be missed and drop to the ground beneath their hosts. This was how brownies were made. They were of the earth and would, while warming in the soil, make the flower they had fallen from bloom a little longer in the summer, and it would be bigger for its help. The life of the flower was a constant give and take. “Tell Liz to come to see me on the morrow. I have a list of things to do today that I cannot put off any longer.” He asked if it was finding a job. “Yes. I’m bored, if you want to know the truth of it. I will see if I can work with Pip in her shop.” “Oh.” She glared at him. “I do not wish to be critical, my lady, but are you sure that is a job for you? You are not very good with people.” “I can be.” He only had to cock his brow at her. “I will be. Okay, I’ll try. But people are so noisy, don’t you think?” “I do. But I do enjoy spending time with the elder Bentley. He is most noisy, but he is a man who knows how to get things done.” She did agree with him there. “I will go now, and have Liz come to you. So that you know, she is terrified of you but excited to work with you.” “Why is she...? Oh. Never mind. I will see her later. And good luck with Lilith, my friend. I hope you will come to see me still.” He told her he would, but that he wished to spend more time with his mate now. “I understand.”
Dark made her way to the bedroom and smiled. It was her place, this room, and one that she’d worked hard to make a resting place for herself. Going to the closet, the only part of the room that she’d not changed, she opened the large doors and looked at the sparsity of her clothing. There were three shirts of varying colors and a single pair of pants. She didn’t understand the necessity of having a closet full of clothing when you could only wear one outfit at a time. Pulling a shirt off the hanger, she pulled it over her head after she removed the one she had on. Hanging the used one on the hanger, she knew that when she returned it would be as clean and pressed as the others. It was her magic that made things the way that she wanted them. Sitting on the log that she had on her floor, she looked around her bedroom. Plants were everywhere…the room looked like she’d simply opened the wall to the forest and let it take over. A lovely waterway that had fish in it took up a large part of the room. Flowers near the walls with bees lazily flying around them gave the room a fresh scent daily. Her bed was a hammock that she had fashioned after one she’d seen in the yard of one of the Bentleys. It was, to her, perfect. And the only thing that she’d ever sleep in as far as she was concerned. Leaving her home was hard for her. She really was terrible with people. She supposed a lot of that had to do with her ability to see them for what they were. Some people, and she had no idea why, seemed to like puffing themselves up to be more than they were. But not like that man that was coming toward her.  Mr. Kendal wasn’t a bad person, but he was lonely and didn’t have a wonderful home life. Still, he tried hard to make everyone believe that he was happy and that everything in his life was just perfect, when she knew for a fact that it was not. He didn’t like his wife or his daughter, he had no say in anything that went on at home, and he hated his job more than she did shoes. The poor man was in a tizzy, as Howie called it, trying to please everyone but himself. “Hello, Dark. I was just coming into town to see about the dress I ordered for my lovely bride. Mable is going to have a big Memorial Day bash. I hope you can make it.” She told him that she’d been invited to the Bentley home. “Oh yes. A lot of people are telling me that. I was invited, but Mable, she had it in her head to have one for herself this year.” “I’m sure that you’ll have a wonderful time.” She saw his disappointment…it washed over him like a blanket. “You’ll be missed.” “Yes, well, Mabel wanted to do this.” Dark nodded and moved down the street when he just stood there. “I’ll talk to you later, Dark. I have to set up for the food and all.” Heading to Faerie Tales and Dreams, she thought of what it must be like to have a mate. It was nothing that she’d ever have, she knew this, but she wondered all the same. Having someone ruling over you all the time would be vexing as well as boring, she thought.