summoning

Plucking languidly at the fine, blue strands of her uncombed hair, Royal stared hard at the center of Callon’s forehead. Avoiding his gaze was nothing new. With measured slowness, Callon placed the grisly photos on the table, then leaned back in his chair. Jaen began to tap her foot impatiently, until Callon put a stilling […]

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collared

He binds my wrists with jute rope, his fingers leaving streaks of red, as he unknowingly paints with blood that is not my own. Pitch-dark eyes stare at my face, like a merchant appraising fruit soon to spoil. I bare my filed teeth, watch him flinch. He sees the wolf now, not a girl to […]

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caution

Shoulder to thigh in a shadowed doorway, Jaen and Callon watched a huddle of uniformed police officers walk down the brownstone’s stairs with faces more gray than the storm-dampened sky overhead. A lone woman stepped out onto the landing, presumably a plainclothes detective, and stared with hard eyes at the small crowd splayed along the […]

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regrets

Jaen eyed him from the devastation of threadbare sheets and shredded pillows with a mix of satisfaction and self-disgust. She plucked a feather from her spiky hair, then swung both legs off the lumpy mattress. An unselfconscious Amazon of slim muscle and scarred sun-touched skin, she stepped over the pile of their clothes and opened […]

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bait

“I don’t play nursemaid,” Callon said. His lip curled, as a memory drove a spike through his stomach. “Besides, isn’t that what she pays you for?” An irreverent smile formed. “Or do you simply like to sleep at her feet like a good dog.” Jaen snarled, the woman gone from her fierce green eyes. She […]

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rotten fruit

“Well, you know what happened last time he passed through,” Jaen said. She crossed her legs again, as though attempting, unsuccessfully, to keep both feet from making lengthy contact with Callon’s floor. Callon watched her movements with a wicked, knowing smile, and drained another beer. “He only pruned the royal tree of a few rotten […]

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hounded

Jaen eyed the dented roof dubiously, as rain hammered on the metal with all the subtly of a queue of enthusiastic cloggers. “Cozy,” she said, her voice implying anything but. “We can’t all afford penthouses like Lennox. So, what brings her favorite beagle to my door?” Grinning, Callon lifted a beer can to his mouth […]

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hunting in the park

Fingers raking through sun-lightened curls, Callon eyed the woman leaning casually against the side of his world-weary Airstream. Her hair was cropped as short as Callon’s own, and slicked back from sharp green eyes with a mix of rainwater and attitude. She looked about as friendly as the feral cat that’d taken up residence beneath […]

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after the fact

Olivare was watching the sun melt into the distant mountains when Arshad regained consciousness. Curses filled his mouth, followed by dirt, as unbidden reflexes flipped him violently off the unfamiliar horse. Unfortunately his body did not manage a graceful maneuver, resulting in a split upper lip and an incensed expression. “What happened?” he demanded. “A […]

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priest

His tough skin resisted the blade Olivare reflexively slashed across his throat, releasing a thin line of watery, wine-dark blood instead of the expected surge. The Tantarian priest grinned, his single eye burning feverishly, as he summoned black fire into one scarred hand. He was tall and gaunt, his naked body baked to a dull […]

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