Book Promo

Release Blitz: A Brush of Blue by V.L. Locey & Giveaway!

A Brush of Blue by V.L. Locey

The most difficult of life’s choices might be the one we make when we open our hearts to another.

Landon Reece is the ultimate Manhattan athlete. The elite goalie for the New York Metros is rich, handsome, generous, and purposely single. His life has been a whirlwind of fancy cars, beautiful people, museum galas, and championship rings. Landon now has one year left on his multi-million dollar contract, and the talk around town isn’t good. Despite carrying his team to the pinnacle of success, the aging goalie is hearing rumors that his contract might not be renewed next season. Hoping to curtail the rumors and show the Metros he still has what it takes, Landon and his agent set up a press tour to hopefully remind the fans—and Metros’ management—just how important Landon is to New York City.

During one of a hundred appearances on the tour, Landon finds himself a guest on the newest and hottest late night talk show in the Big Apple. There he meets Montrell Pittman, leader of the show’s band, A Brush of Blue, and his senses come alive. He resolves to do his best to woo the upbeat, sexy musician who ignites his blood like no other person ever has. As the two men grow closer, Landon’s ice time shows how happy his new romance is making him. Then a tragedy rocks his world, and Landon finds himself wallowing in despair and in danger of losing the man who might be the only one who can clear his blues away.

Available at: Amazon

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Release Blitz: Red Heir by Lisa Henry & Sarah Honey + Excerpt & Giveaway!

Red Heir by Lisa Henry & Sarah Honey

Imprisoned pickpocket Loth isn’t sure why a bunch of idiots just broke into his cell claiming they’re here to rescue the lost prince of Aguillon, and he doesn’t really care. They’re looking for a redheaded prince, and he’s more than happy to play along if it means freedom. Then his cranky cellmate Grub complicates things by claiming to be the prince as well.

Now they’re fleeing across the country and Loth’s stuck sharing a horse and a bedroll with Grub while imitating royalty, eating eel porridge, and dodging swamp monsters and bandits.

Along the way, Loth discovers that there’s more to Grub than meets the eye. Under the dirt and bad attitude, Grub’s not completely awful. He might even be attractive. In fact, Loth has a terrible suspicion that he’s developing feelings, and he’s not sure what to do about that. He’d probably have more luck figuring it out if people would just stop trying to kill them.

Still, at least they’ve got a dragon, right?

Available at: Amazon

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Release Blitz: Off Balance by L.E. Royal + Excerpt & Giveaway!

Off Balance by L.E. Royal

When she lands her dream job, Maya Scott thinks her luck may finally be about to change. Eager to prove herself a successful adult and win back custody of her young daughter, Maya is determined to excel at the Mars Fund. Her new boss, New York’s notorious ice queen, Elena Mars, could prove difficult to please. Their relationship gets off to a rocky start and Maya learns from her coworkers, some who love her while others loathe her, that Elena has Cerebral palsy.

Embarrassed by her assumptions, Maya avoids Elena until the appearance of her Elena’s young daughter at the office opens a line of communication and provides some common ground. A tentative connection blossoms between them and Maya realizes there is much more to Elena than the outward appearance. Between the complexities of learning about disability and navigating the distance between them in age and wealth, they find that what matters in the end is the family we choose.

Available at: Amazon

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Release Blitz: Wild Warrior by Jocelynn Drake & Rinda Elliott + Excerpt & Giveaway!

Wild Warrior by Jocelynn Drake & Rinda Elliott

Baer Manning

What happens when Baer spills his big secret about monsters and magic to a total stranger?

Chaos.

In Baer’s defense, he really thought Wiley was a lost brother.

This case of mistaken identity forces the cute artist to stay at the plantation house for his own protection while they search for a way to take down a witch.

Wiley Stuart

He never should have gotten in Baer’s Jeep.

But in Wiley’s defense, Baer is really sexy. And funny. And so sweet. And did he mention sexy?

All his life he’d dreamed of superheroes and a life of action. He just never expected to find himself swept up into a world filled with monsters and goddesses.

Wiley will do anything to stay with this magical band of brothers and help them with their fight. He just wished he could be Baer’s soul mate.

Wild Warrior is the second book in the Weavers Circle series. It includes fast-paced action, running through Savannah, secrets, swimming pool fun, shapeshifting, an elephant, sexy times, lots of snakes, insecurity, three crazy old ladies, and magic!

Available at: Amazon

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Blood Oath by A.T. Brennan: Exclusive Excerpt & Giveaway!

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Exclusive Excerpt from Blood Oath

by A.T. Brennan

“Can I ask you something?”

“Sure.” Ryder glanced at his friend. It wasn’t like Zane to be so cautious.

“What’s going on with you and Felix? Like really. You called him your boyfriend, and you sleep together, but he’s not just with you.”

Ryder paused, trying to find a way to explain what he and Felix had.

“Felix is the only man I’ve ever loved, and he was honest with me from day one. I went into this, knowing he had another partner, so yeah, he’s my boyfriend. But he’s also Luka’s boyfriend.”

“But how can you be okay with that?”

“I wasn’t sure I would be,” he said honestly. “When he first told me, I was jealous as hell. I kept waiting for him to change his mind and tell me Luka was the only one he had room in his heart for, but when that didn’t happen, I started to trust that he loves me as much as I love him.”

“I don’t think I could do it.”

“When you love someone, you accept all of them. Felix is poly, and he’s been with Luka since he was sixteen. If I wanted to be a part of his life as more than just a friend, I had to accept that. It was a struggle. Still is some days if I’m going to be honest, but I can’t expect Felix to change who he is just for me. I’d lose him. Maybe not right away, but that would be the thing that would tear us apart. I’m not willing to do that to him, to us.”

“You’re a better man than I am,” Zane said with a sigh.

“No, I’m not,” he said, letting his head fall back on the seat as he looked up at the ceiling of Zane’s car. “I’m really not.”

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Honorary Blogger Lou Sylvre and Anne Barwell: Adventures in Co-writing

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Adventures in Co-writing

by Lou Sylvre and Anne Barwell

Thanks for hosting us today!

Although this is our second published co-written book, The Harp and the Sea was our first foray into co writing, and an interesting project to figure out how we’d make it work. 

Lou is in the US and I’m in New Zealand, so the first thing we did was set up a regular chat schedule, so we could chat in real time to hash out character details and where we wanted to go with the plot.  Between that we kept in touch with email.

Writing a story set in another time and place meant we not only had to juggle plot and character but also location, history, and language.  We’d read enough of each other’s writing to know that our styles would mesh, and decided the easiest way to approach this project was to take a character each and write his POV.  So I wrote Ian’s POV, and Lou wrote Robbie’s. 

Mostly. 

As we traded scenes back and forth, it was with the caveat that we could tweak our character’s dialogue and actions. As it turned out we didn’t need to do a lot of that as we got to know both men the more we wrote them.  And, when as we wrote more and got into the fun geographical research and plotted routes and journey times, we ended up changing a few scenes, and re-writing them to mesh with our research so only writing from one character’s POV went out the window.  As we got into publisher edits and proofs, I couldn’t remember what I’d written or hadn’t and couldn’t pick the difference between our two ‘voices.’ I’d got the same feedback from our beta readers. 

As we got into this story we both got hit with a lot of real life and family issues, so had to put the project on the back burner for months at a time.  Because of this, we decided early on that we needed to plot the story in much more detail than we’d normally do.  We already had an overview, but we had several sessions on chat breaking it down to chapters and scenes, and working out which scene would work better from which character’s POV. For example, there’s several scenes where Robbie is unconscious so it definitely worked better to have Ian tell that part of the story.

Naturally our characters did what most characters do once you get into a story and they changed parts of the plot on us, so our well thought out chapter numbers disappeared into the sea along the way, but the final result is a better story.  I wouldn’t go into a co-written story without a firm plot in mind, as it’s important to be heading for the same finish line, although I think leaving room for creativity and being open to change is essential.

I’d had a nasty experience with Google docs crashing and taking a lot of work with it, so I was wary of tempting fate with it again so we decided to go old fashioned and use word.

We ran into a bit of fun with that as we were using different versions of it and edits I’d made sometimes disappeared in Lou’s document when they were merged so it worked better to send the same document back and forth and write the story like a round robin. Lou would write Robbie’s POV up to the point where it was Ian’s turn to tell their story, then send it over, and vice versa.  As we weren’t alternating chapters, sometimes I’d write several thousand words before returning it, and sometimes it would only be a short scene.  There were also a few scenes that didn’t quite go the way I was expecting.  But I figure that’s one of those signs that the characters and their story are taking on a life of their own, which is one of my favourite things about writing. 

The big thing I’d stress with co-writing is that both authors need to have good compromising skills, and know when to push for something, and when to let it go. Egos need to be left at the door or the experience won’t be a pleasant one.

We’ve enjoyed sparking off each other, and building something new so much we’re planning more in The Magic in the Isles series, and also took some time in the middle of writing this to co-write a New Zealand Romance too.

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Paid to be Shared by Romilly King: Exclusive Excerpt & Giveaway!

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Exclusive Excerpt from Paid to be Shared

by Romilly King

“Married couples don’t do absolutely everything together,” Griffin had rationalized to Ivo when they got further than just hinting around the edges of the issue, “Nobody needs to witness anything, it will keep the mystique intact,” 

And that sort of made sense to Ivo, although somehow he didn’t think that fucking a submissive fell into the same category of married life as toenail clipping and nasal hair trimming. But he couldn’t deny either Griffin or himself, because he could feel himself and his marriage fading to shades of grey for lack of it. 

He swallowed at the fear that suddenly knotted his stomach. He wasn’t used to fear, as a surgeon, he was never fearful, but the thought of losing Griffin for lack of this scared the hell out of him. 

Only this morning he had laid in bed, listening to Grif in the bath- room, hearing the sound of the shower, the turn of the taps, the buzz of his toothbrush, and he had thought, yeah, it will be just like this, routine maintenance, I don’t need to see it. That had made sense in the sunny domestic glow of their bedroom with its rumpled sheets, the scent of Griff ’s body wash, and the detritus of their life lying around casually. 

Griffin had come back into the bedroom, happily naked. His pale, freckled skin glowed in the morning light, and his face had been eager and excited, making him look years younger. He had slid up the bed, crawled up Ivo’s body, pressing kisses to his naked skin as he went. He had nuzzled into Ivo’s neck, lipping at the sensitive skin under his ear, and Ivo had tilted his head back, letting his handsome, funny, desperate husband have full access to his skin. 

Yeah, Ivo had thought, we can have this, us together is the crucial thing, the thing I always need to see. 

He had wrapped his arms around Griffin and rolled him. Griffin went easily, trusting and relaxed and had smiled up at Ivo, all soft because he knew Ivo would never ask anything of him that he didn’t want to give, not again. Ivo had looked down at his husband, “I love you,” he had said. 

Griffin had reached up, tangled his hand in Ivo’s short dark hair, and pulled him down for a kiss, “I love you too.” Their foreheads had pressed together, their breaths had mingled, and Griffin’s had been all minty when he said, “We got this.” 

“Yeah.” 

Ivo sighed, too heavily, and Dr. Gregory and Griffin both turned and looked at him. “Sorry,” he apologized, “Uh, yes, as medical professionals testing is high on our lists of priorities. We can arrange it through the hospital.” 

“You can certainly arrange your own testing through your facility,” Dr. Gregory said equably, “But all our Venditores are tested here in house, so you don’t need to worry about that,” 

He took his glasses off and rubbed his eyes, and Ivo was struck by how young he was to be Head of Organizational Psychology at Delph- ic. His professional rank was the same as Ivo’s own, but he was a good ten years younger. The agencies did tend to headhunt the prodigies, so chances were they had groomed this young man through scholarships from a young age. 

Ivo was glad he hadn’t been a prodigy. He had enjoyed his career trajectory, a steady climb through his surgical residency, his fellowship, and then latterly, with Griffin at his side, rising like a bubble through the ranks to Head of Thoracic Surgery. He didn’t want to go any fur- ther, he left policy wrangling to Griffin, he liked his hands inside bodies too much, that was where he belonged. 

“It’s clear you have put a lot of thought into this,” Dr. Gregory looked up at them both, “and that is essential with a complex contract like this,” 

He studied them both across the desk, “I think I can speak freely with you, we all share a similar background. This is going to be a diffi- cult contract for Delphic to fill – and please, make no mistake, we want to fill it – but it isn’t straightforward, and I am duty-bound to oversee 

it personally, primarily for the sake of our Venditor, because we will be asking a lot of him.” 

Ivo felt the fear return, this time, it was fear that they would not get to have this, that their fundamental incompatibility with each other would deny them once again. 

“Is there any possibility that you would consider two submissives on a less intensive schedule?” Dr. Gregory asked reasonably, “There are a limited number of Venditores that even get close to matching your joint profile. We have manually cross-referenced for compatibility, and additional training would be required even then. 

“Of course, that isn’t your concern, but if you were willing to con- sider two Venditores for fewer weekly …” 

“Do you have a compatible Venditor?” Griffin interrupted him, and Ivo was surprised by his aggressive tone, “Because there are other agencies if you cannot fulfill this request.” 

Dr. Gregory looked at them neutrally, “There is no other agency that can even get close to giving you what you need,” There was the slightest emphasis on the last word and Ivo, despite his tendency to miss social cues, heard it loud and clear. 

Griffin did too, and he reached for Ivo’s hand. Ivo took it and squeezed. 

Dr. Gregory sighed, and Ivo realized that those moss-green eyes weren’t just kind; they were full of empathy, and Ivo felt naked before them. 

“As I said, I will oversee this contract personally, and I will be work- ing with the Venditor we think may be able to accommodate your needs,” 

Ivo heard Griffin let out the breath he had been holding, and his hand relaxed in Ivo’s grip. 

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Honorary Blogger C F White: Writing During a Pandemic + Excerpt & Giveaway!

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Writing During a Pandemic

by C F White

We’re all in it at the moment. The unprecedented pandemic that was thrust upon us from around December last year and has hit almost every country and affected us all in some way or another.

I’m in England. So it hit us badly in March. We went into complete lockdown at the end of March 2020 and are only now slowly coming out of it. What did this mean for me personally and for my writing and creativity? Well, I was sent to work from home when my job is mostly being out and about —I do outreach for a university, working with underrepresented groups and disadvantaged children giving them access to higher education. I love my job, but all of a sudden it was very, very different.

Not only that, I have two children. One who had just started secondary school and one in primary who has complex special needs. Having them both with me twenty-four seven and having to homeschool and work full time, I think it’s safe to say my writing took an absolute nosedive.

I was lucky in the sense that Fade to Blank had been written by that point. It was finished. I’d started on book two when we went into lockdown and I think I was about midway point into it. Then I halted. Not only could I not find the time, but also the motivation to write was severely affected. There was so much going on, so much fear and worry and confusion and anxiety in the entire world that me putting words to a story just didn’t feel right.

I hadn’t made the decision on what to do about Fade to Blank at that point, so I sat on the book for a while especially as I was concerned that I might never be able to finish book two if we never came out of lockdown, if the world didn’t go back to normal. I gave myself a break. I didn’t want to. Believe me, I wanted to keep writing. I wanted to go back to how things were. I wanted my kids to go to school. But that wasn’t going to happen. So I gave myself a talking to and realised this time with my family is precious. I should take the time to appreciate it.

So I did. I tried not to think about the days, weeks, months ticking by and me having not written any new words. I asked other authors if they were struggling. I wondered how others were still able to write. I thought myself a failure many, many times. I read a lot. I binge read a few series I’d been meaning to read. I edited a few older works. My audio books came out during this time too, so that gave me some focus.

But I still hated that I couldn’t seem to get any words down to finish book two.

Then, suddenly, about three months in, I realised that this was my normal. This was life as it was going to be for a long time. I’d been waiting for things to snap back to life as it had been, instead of embracing it as it was. So I opened the laptop. I actually started writing something completely different. A new book. A new genre. The words flowed out of me. I wrote about 10k in a few days. That kickstarted me into a new writing process. I clicked out of that book, back into London Lies #2, and let myself go.

I finished the book recently. It’s all done and dusted. And I feel I’ve got myself back again.

Moral of this story is, don’t fight it. When there’s so much else going on, don’t force the words to come. Don’t wallow in guilt that isn’t your fault. Don’t compare yourself as to why others were seemingly business as usual and you’d halted to grinding stop. Everyone’s circumstances are different, and no one knows what goes on behind closed doors and how others are really coping. Stay away as much as possible from social media. During these times, it can be a blessing to keep in contact with those we can’t see but it’s also a curse by giving out misinformation and sucking the joy out of things. Use with caution I say.

Words will be there when they are ready. It’s all about adjusting to a new way of working. We’re all doing it at the moment. My real-life job, I’m adjusting to not being able to go and talk to those kids who are already disadvantaged from their peers and give them that extra boost – I have to do this online now or in a new, innovative way. Just like my writing. I’m getting used to throwing down words to the background of Peppa Pig or staying up later when my kids are in bed to edit what I wrote when I was mid-way through a maths problem with them.

It’s a crazy world out there at the moment. We need to acknowledge that and not put guilt on ourselves for not producing at the speed we used to. Or even finding it hard to escape into a good book, because our brains can’t switch off as quickly as our kindle can. We’ll get there again. We will. We’ll adjust and soon this will be normal.

And we can write when things feel normal.

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Author Spotlight Amanda Meuwissen + Exclusive Excerpt from After Vertigo & Giveaway!

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Exclusive Excerpt from After Vertigo

by Amanda Meuwissen

The Streak sat back on Ben’s thighs, not truly holding him down anymore, but not moving from his lap either. “If I’m so little a threat, why waste time with me?”

“Because I need your help,” Ben said. “I built the gun and others like it to temporarily depower Supers, and it works on others, but not you.”

“That’s what you were trying to do?” He looked at the gun with interest now. “I thought they just stunned people. The cops caught Talon because this thing can remove powers?”

Disrupt powers,” Ben corrected. “It lasts about ten minutes. No one’s been able to figure out how to override the Vertigo gene completely.”

“But with your guns, you’re close?”

“You hardly need to worry since the output doesn’t affect you. Do you know why it doesn’t affect you? Any idea at all why you might be different from the others?”

The Streak kept his eyes turned away as he answered, “No clue.”

Ben wished he could tell if he was lying. “Regardless, your powers are unique. Extraordinary.”

“Thanks for noticing, but I don’t do handouts.”

“Please, I’m only asking—”

“I look out for me.”

“Then I’ll turn you in,” Ben said boldly—amazed at how bold he felt. “I’ll give the police your name and address. Even if you run, you won’t have an easy time living your life.”

He gaped at Ben but also seemed impressed. “You’re blackmailing me now? How heroic.”

“The desperate get creative.”

“Desperate why?”

“Because….”

Ben hadn’t fully admitted it to himself, why this mattered so much outside the thrill, but he had so few people in his life that meant something to him—Tony, Beverly, his mother. They were it. Tony was easier to protect. As a captain at the FCPD, he didn’t hit the field as often, and he had all the equipment Ben could provide him.

But Beverly was a civilian. Worse, a politician, someone people could target. She was in danger just walking the street, and so was their mother. If anything ever happened to any of them….

“My family lives in this city. Sister, best friend, mother. I don’t want to lose any of them because I was too weak to do something. Don’t you understand that even a little? Friends? Family you want to protect?”

The smugness drained from Streak’s face, but he didn’t say anything.

“Please. I just want the innocent to have a chance against impossible odds. If there are any Supers out there wanting to be heroes, we haven’t seen them. You’re the only option left.”

He was quiet for a while, but when he spoke up, it was with a twist at his lips again and a resettling of his body on Ben’s thighs. “I’m no hero, so… got any other perks to offer?”

“I-I’ll… cover your grocery bills?”

He laughed. “It’s cute you think I pay for my groceries.”

“Then I’ll… keep the police off your back! My friend’s a captain.”

“Not really endearing yourself to me right now.” He grimaced. “But you got me at a disadvantage and you’re not exactly wrong. I don’t want to move, and your resources might be enough to keep me safe while bringing in these psychos out doing more than property damage. So, if I say yes”—he leaned closer, almost nose to nose with Ben—“what else is in it for me? Do I get a kiss to seal the deal?”

“I-I-I beg your pardon?” Ben felt his face heat up hotter, certain he had to be as red as the Streak’s T-shirt. He could feel so much of the man in this position with his knees parted around Ben’s waist. The Streak was handsome and strong and lean while also just the right amount of muscled. The dimples hiding beneath his beard and the occasional sunspots were nice too.

But he couldn’t be serious! He was mocking Ben again. And even if that wasn’t the case, Ben would hardly want an impudent thief to ravage him like Ryder from his eBook. His dream man was supposed to be charming and sweet, not unlawful and crude.

Not that the Streak was Ben’s dream man!

“I don’t kiss men I hardly know,” Ben said, which was true since he’d barely kissed anyone.

“But you do kiss men. Glad to know I guessed right. And you know more than most, handsome.” His eyes darted down Ben’s body. “You’re here. How’d you find me, anyway?”

“With hard work and ingenuity. And my name is Ben. Benjamin Krane.”

“Nice to meet you, Benji. You can call me Grey.”

“And you can call me Ben,” Ben corrected, since Benji was intimate and something to be earned.

“Oh, I like you.” Grey chuckled, resting his hands on Ben’s chest and causing a shiver to course through him. “I’ll play along for now, but just you wait, I’m gonna get that kiss out of you someday.”

Finally, he extricated himself from Ben’s lap, and Ben stood slowly after him, unable to tamp down his blush.

“Why on earth would you want to kiss me?” He glanced away when Grey’s eyes bore into him like he’d said something scandalous.

“You have no idea how hot you are, do you?”

Ben was not hot. He was a science geek, like Grey had pointed out. But since he didn’t know if he was being teased, he simply said, “I thought, because of my gun, you called me Cold.”

“Cold it is.” Grey snickered. “When I’m not calling you Benji. So, Benji, where do we go from here? Dinner? A movie? Or straight to the extortion?”

Ben hadn’t thought that far ahead, but it seemed he had a super-speedy thief at his disposal to finally make progress against the city’s villains.

It was definitely the best and worst decision he had ever made.

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Two Princes by Maggie Blackbird: Exclusive Excerpt & Giveaway!

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Exclusive Excerpt from Two Princes

by Maggie Blackbird

“If you’ll excuse me, since I didn’t expect to have to stay after school, I have a few phone calls to make. I’ll be right back.” The teacher turned and swished out the door.

Billy finally expelled the laughter from the back of his throat. He wasn’t writing anything. If they wanted to lock him up and throw away the key, they could try. He only had four more months until he turned sixteen, and his get-out-of-jail-free card was burning a hole in his back pocket to finally escape this prison.

“What’re you laughing about?” René snapped open the three rings on his binder and shucked four pieces of paper onto the desk.

“From where I’m sitting—nothing.”

“Whatever.” René started writing.

This would piss off His Royal Highness, but big deal. Billy had to find some kind of amusement to pass the time. He wormed his desk against the floor until it bumped Rene’s.

“Get back to your spot.” Warning lingered on René’s order.

“How am I s’posed to help if I’m sitting a mile away.” The crisp clean scent from this morning settled under Billy’s nose. “What’re you doing?”

“What’s it look like? Completing our assignment. Go ahead, call it a joke. But I got a job to work and had to get someone to cover my shift at the store. There isn’t a chance I’m coming here tomorrow.”

“Giving your version, huh?” Billy leaned over to peek at the paper.

“I told you to step off.”

“Watch it. I get a say, too. I wasn’t even bugging Stu. He was invading my turf.”

“Your turf?” René snorted. “It figures you’d claim ownership of Indian Corner.”

“Not like you’d be caught dead there, eh? Can’t be seen near ‘skins.”

“As if.” René kept writing.

The five-dollar words on the paper jumped out at Billy: Billy Redsky’s family is responsible for his attitude problem, because they aren’t respected in the community. This is of their own doing since none of the adults work and refuse to maintain their home. Therefore, Billy feels the need to assert power over others whom he feels inadequate to, which resulted in his dispute with my cousin’s son, Stuart, this morning.

“Bullshit. Erase it.” He snatched the paper and crumpled it in his hand. The fancy report mirrored what Chief Oshawee probably said at the dinner table every night. “Stu approached me. Got it?”

“Don’t you ever disrespect me again.” René looked down his nose, as he’d done this morning. “You want something from me, you ask. Got it?”

“I ain’t asking for nothing. You didn’t ask me if you could write that bullshit about me and my fam.”

“Seriously? You want to help write our report?” René tossed the pen on the desk. “Fine. Have at it.” He snatched the extra paper and slammed it in front of Billy. “Get writing… if you know how to write.”

Billy seized the paper. He shouldn’t have crumpled the other one. Maybe in the upper grades they had to write those important essays, but not in the lower classes. He had to come up with something or René would laugh.

Billy began writing what he believed was the truth. René Oshawee is the chief’s spoiled-rotten son who thinks he can get away with anything…

“Get real. Chrome Dome isn’t gonna buy what you’re selling. He knows I’ve never been in trouble. I shouldn’t have agreed to what he asked.” René sat back, shaking his head.

“What’d he ask you to do?” Suspicion crawled up Billy’s spine.

“He said he saw potential in you and asked me to help. That’s why he has us writing this dumb report. He thought if you had a chance to work with me, you might smarten up.”

“Uh… he did?” The hostility vanished. The tension crawling along Billy’s spine melted. Finally, after fifteen years, someone gave a shit, even if it was the lame Chrome Dome. “You… uh… agreed?”

“Yeah.” René grabbed the paper. “Are you in or not?”

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