Things are still on schedule for a release on Friday morning. With luck, it will go off without a hitch. The reality is probably that it will go off mostly all right and I will come out of it only a little stressed out. Such is the life of the indie author.
But man, I am really excited to see and hear what you all think about this book. I've had such a great reaction to Tybalt and Vi that I'm hoping you'll feel the same way about Kade and Melanie too.
But enough blathering from me, right? You all really want to see the excerpt I promised?
Well then. Here you go!
If nothing else good could be said about this new life, it wasn't boring. As a matter of fact, Melanie thought while she stared up at the vaulted ceiling far overhead, she might not mind a little boredom for a change.
Instead, she stood in the middle of a marble corridor that wound through a structure best qualified as "pyramid." "Temple," perhaps, she corrected herself. Or "ziggurat." Whatever the term, it clearly didn't belong in the middle of the San Francisco she knew.
Then again, she didn't belong here at all. She'd been caught somewhere between reality and a dream. They'd stepped into shadow and walked between worlds to get here. They'd been met by Officer Garamendi, who looked more intimidating in a suit than in policeman blue. She'd been handed off to Sylvie, who'd escorted her through a whirlwind tour and now stood silent at her shoulder, waiting for a response.
"I don't know what to say," Melanie admitted. "It's impressive, certainly. Like seeing history brought to life, which is a little strange." She let her gaze wander over the smooth walls and well-tended floor. Not at all like the ruins she'd wandered while traveling. "It's alien." She winced at her words. "Not that I mean to imply that any of you—"
Sylvie cut her off with the graceful movement of one hand. "You never know, we might be. There are an awful lot of people who think the pyramids were ancient spaceships and Egyptian knowledge came direct from the stars."
Melanie should have laughed. She felt the urge but a shred of uncertainty held it back. The smile she managed wobbled a bit.
"That was a joke. I promise," Sylvie said, fingers a light pressure against Melanie's arm. "Sorry, my sense of humor's a little off. It's a self-defense mechanism when you work with people like Kade all day."
"He's not that bad, is he?"
Sylvie arched an eyebrow. "You guys haven't been together that long, I know, but when was the last time you heard him crack a joke? Does he laugh a lot around you? How about smiling?"
Melanie racked her brain for a concrete example of the things Sylvie asked. "I know he smiles. I'm sure I've heard him laugh."
"But you have to think about it," she said triumphantly. "My point is made. Someone's got to lighten things up from time to time." She spread her arms and shrugged. "That means me."Now Melanie laughed and it came as a relief. It felt genuine, not something forced or strained. She couldn't say that about any other moment that came to mind over the last week or so. Except a few seconds of silence in Kade's company. A wave of heat swept over her and she knew she blushed. "I can think of worse jobs."