I’m sorry to say we had a little scuffle last night. The gravediggers are hard at work in the backyard, and I’ve sent my minions out to chase the last of the ruffians down. So I think it’s safe tos ay this time, we’ll continue uninter–
*Angry shouts sound from outside*
“Excuse me.” *Night Mistress hits button on security pad, explosion sounds* I’m sorry. As i was saying, I’ve invited romance author Casey Wyatt to speak with us. Please, make yourself at home, dear.
First off, welcome back. For those who might not know you, Casey, why don’t you tell us a little about yourself and your work?
Casey: Hi! I’m Casey Wyatt. I write paranormal romance and urban fantasy. I currently have two published novels and several more in progress. I’m an avid reader, movie watcher, anime lover (especially Fullmetal Alchemist!)
Mistress: My minion’s poking me to say that’s a very good choice. Whatever anime is….anything else?
*Aside from Juli: Don’t mind her, Casey. She may live in the 21st century, but she’s stuck in the 12th.
*Mistress peers at Juli*: What did you say?
*Mistress narrows eyes* Yes, well, anything else Casey?
Casey: Yes, I also enjoy knitting and crocheting stuff.
Mistress: What inspired your latest novel The Undead Space Initiative?
Casey: My own demented imagination. Seriously, all my story ideas seem to sneak up on me. I was driving the car when the idea for The Undead Space Initiative popped into my head. I heard – Cherry Cordial, vampire stripper must flee to Mars. And that is pretty much what the story is about. The idea for Mystic Ink came from a baby name book while I was researching character names for a different story.
Mistress: Okay,my minions have insisted I ask you some probing questions. Ready? All Hallow’s Eve or All Saint’s Day?
Mistress: Favorite scary movie?
Casey: Shaun of the Dead. I was going to choose The Nightmare Before Christmas, but it’s really not that scary.
Mistress: But so endearing, yes. I agree. Ahem, Dr. Frankenstein, or Dracula?
Casey: Dracula. Sorry, but I prefer dead guys with matching body parts.
Mistress: Candy corn or chocolate?
Casey: Chocolate. Though I do love candy corn and I buy it the moment it appears in the grocery store (so that would be late August!).
Mistress: What are you going to dress up as for Halloween this year?
Casey: Scary writer girl under deadline.
Mistress: If you could be in any classic horror novel, or story (such as Dracula, Frankenstein, Carmilla, Turn of the Screw, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, The Tell-Tale Heart? The Raven?), which would it be?
Casey: Hmmm. Good question. That depends since I want to survive the experience. I do love Edgar Allen Poe, so I would have to say The Raven.
Mistress: Please give us a taste of your work.
Casey: This scene from my latest release, The Undead Space Initiative, is between my heroine Cherry Cordial and the super sexy Ian McDevitt. Between, me, you and the fence post, I sure wouldn’t mind spending time with him in a spaceship, if you know what I mean <wags eyebrows>!
Mistress: Undead? Sounds like my kinda guy. Let me see here…. *peers at book in Casey’s hand*
Suddenly, I wasn’t the biggest, baddest thing on the block.
They always traveled in packs. Enough of them could take me down. Revenants were cousins to vampires, undead beings with too much spirit. Essentially ghosts with physical reality.
I picked up the pace, steering toward the middle of the street and well away from dark corners. If I had a heart rate, it would have been pounding. My blood was rare and prized. One sip and the revenants would keep me alive to serve as a drink dispenser.
I fished through my bag. Where was my cell? Jonathan would come. Provided I could find the damn phone.
Meaty thwacks rang out in the alley as I passed by.
Do not look.
A soft oomph, followed by a clipped English accent, “Try that again, bastards.”
A lone and gorgeous male vampire had been captured. Three revenants had him pinned against the wall. Two held his arms and one pinned his legs. Three more surrounded him like a pack of knife-wielding hyenas.
The vampire snarled. Long fangs bared, presumably pissed off at his capture. With his sculptured physique, he could handle the situation. Right?
None of the baddies had noticed me yet. I could leave.
Another punch landed, connecting with the vamp’s mouth. The crack echoed in the alley. Liquid splattered, followed by cruel laughter.
The vampire hottie spat, his lip broken. Blood trickled down his jaw, seeping into the stark white collar of his button down shirt. “Think twice before you cut me, mate. I’ll smash all of your fucking heads in.”
“Shut up, meat.”
One added, “I’m so scared,” before swinging his knife and tearing a gash in the vampire’s chest. The pack laughed. A revenant approached the vampire with IV bags.
Crap-a-roni, now I had to get involved. They planned to bleed him out. That’s what revenants did. They took a vampire’s blood and drained him or her dry. The blood was then sold to the highest revenant bidder. They believed our blood could remove the excess spirit from their bodies, returning them to their true vampire form.
Problem is—it’s a myth. There’s no way for a revenant to become a vampire, any more than I could become a zebra if I wanted to. These guys were zealots. Deranged lunatics.
“This is your last warning, blokes,” Mr. Sexy English accent said. I tried not to shiver at the sound of his rich voice. Heady whiffs of his sweet scented blood drifted my way. Like a fine wine, the smell promised a delicious and satisfying taste. Saliva pooled in my mouth. My fangs dug into my bottom lip.
“Well lookee here!”
Damn. I should have run when I had the chance. The pack turned in my direction, their faces eager for more blood. I cringed under the gaze of the hollow-eyed, pale-skinned nightmares who all wanted a piece of me.
The nearest one licked his gray, rubbery lips. “Yum. Dessert.”
I was too stupid to live. Why didn’t I run? My feet were frozen to the spot. I did the lamest, girliest thing possible. I swung my purse. And connected. A solid hit to the nuts.
The revenant shrieked, clutching his junk. “Bitch!”
The male vampire bucked, tossing the revenant off his left arm. Partially free, he ripped the arm off the other revenant before the thing could even react. With balled fists, Mr. Hottie crushed the skull of the captor holding his feet.
“Don’t stand there like a daft pony!” the vampire scolded. He snapped the neck of the nearest revenant, then motioned. “Get out of my way!”
“What? Without my help, you’d still be trapped against a wall!” I ducked and stepped aside, narrowly avoiding the gray-lipped revenant who had thought I was dessert.
“The rubbish bin would be more help than you!” Mr. English silenced two more revenants with brutal, neck-twisting efficiency.
“Oh really?” What a prick.
The revenant recovered from the nut bash and charged me again. His fingertips knocked off my ball cap. I kicked him in the stomach, grabbed the garbage barrel and slammed it over the revenant’s head as he honed in on me. The plastic bin wouldn’t kill the thing, but he couldn’t see either.
“Pathetic,” the vampire said.
Mr. English and I watched as the last revenant bounced against a brick wall before falling over, his legs scissoring.
“Time for this one to bugger off as well.” Mr. English yanked off the barrel and snuffed out the revenant with a bone-shattering blow to its head.
One by one the corpses disintegrated into dusty husks. A breeze blew through the alley and scattered the remains. Gray vaporous clouds floated around before dissipating into the air. To a passerby, the revenants’ final passage would look like dirty car exhaust.
“Well, I’m off then. Have good evening.” He brushed dirt off his tailored trousers. “Sod it, they scuffed my shoes. And this shirt is ruined.”
“Yeah. What a tragedy. You’re lucky. You could have been a revenant Slurpee.”
He sniffed at the suggestion. “I was never in any real danger.”
“You could have fooled me,” I retrieved my ball cap from the grimy sidewalk.
A late afternoon sunbeam penetrated the alley, illuminating the vampire’s blue-green eyes and highlighting the fine bone structure of his face. I tried not to gawk.
I gathered my tangled hair and mashed it under the hat. “Looks to me like they had you pinned against the ropes.” Did I mention he was gorgeous? Like a cover model. An underwear cover model. I cleared my throat. He was a total stranger, and while I bet he looked divine in only underwear, I needed to stop ogling him.
When he stared at me and didn’t reply, I lamely added, “You know? Down for the count.”
“I understood the reference, luv,” he said in his damn fine accent.
A man-shaped shadow shifted from across the street, forming a dark blot in the alley’s entrance. We weren’t alone.
Mistress: Sounds intriguing! We wish you all the best with it. Before we let you go, where can our guests find you on that evil little realm called the Web?
Casey: I have my tentacles all over the web!
Mistress: *hehe* A girl after my own heart. I guess I’m going to have to have one of my minions look into that.
The Undead Space Initiative:
Pink Petal Books – http://pinkpetalbooks.com/The-Undead-Space-Initiative-by-Casey-Wyatt.html
Soul Mate Publishing: http://www.soulmatepublishing.com/mystic-ink/
Casey: Thanks for having me as your guest today, Night Mistress. If anyone has any questions feel free to ask. Or if you want to talk movies, anime, zombies or about other fun topics, I’m game!
Mistress: Thanks for taking time out to be with us, Casey. Good luck with that deadline! Don’t forget to take a moment out of your night to scare those trick-or-treaters (or to cast a spell on those pesky villagers)!