Thursday, March 30, 2017


Beautiful Sacrifice
Ember Raine Winters
(Pride and Honor, #2)
Publication date: April 20th 2017
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
Tasha
Being a cop, I didn’t have any choice, but I really wish I hadn’t got mixed up in this case. My dark past is catching up to me ever since he barreled into my life without a care. It terrifies me that he sees right through me. He could be the one to save me . . . or break me.

Twitch
It was just a job. Until it wasn’t. By then the sexy little redhead had her claws in me. Now, she’s in my life and I’m lost. How am I supposed to keep the demons from her past from eating her alive? I don’t know, but I will do whatever it takes to make her mine.


Author Bio:
Ember Raine Winters is a new author who just self published her first book. She went to community college to study political science and philosophy. She is currently taking classes to get her BS in business majoring in Sports management. She is an avid reader mostly fantasy and science fiction with a little romance thrown in as well. She loves writing Science Fiction mainly dystopian but is trying her hand in Fantasy as well.

XBTBanner1
LOWBLOW_BANNER Low Blow by Kristen Hope Mazzola releases on April 18th! Check out the HOT cover and PREORDER NOW for only 99c! Release Date: April 18th Genre: Contemporary Romance Cover Model: Josh McCann
17175872_1799601693694982_431315954_o
ONLY 99c! Price goes up on release day! Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2nvc3a3 Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2nAcvFA Amazon AU: http://amzn.to/2nvj3DE Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/2oyseT6
unknow athlete ready for fighting, dark background
Blurb:
**Low Blow is the fourth book in the Shots On Goal series and can be read as a STANDALONE.**
One injury - a freaking broken rib. That's all it took to send life into a tailspin at the age of sixteen. After getting a heart transplant, I knew that I could never take life or my talents for granted - I was going to be the best of the best. Boxing consumed my life and I was on track for greatness. Everything was perfect until I woke up one morning, ten years after my surgery with an overwhelming need to meet her - the girl whose father's heart beat in my chest. Little did I know that she was going to save me all over again.
LOWBLOW_TEASER1
About the Author:
I am just an average twenty-something following my dreams. I have a full time “day job” and by night I am an author. I guess you could say that writing is like my super power (I always wanted one of those). I am the lover of wine, sushi, football and the ocean; that is when I am not wrapped up in the literary world. Please feel free to contact me to chat about my writing, books you think I’d like or just to shoot the, well you know. A portion of all my royalties are donated to The Marcie Mazzola Foundation. Author Links: Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1fQ2eZI Amazon: http://amzn.to/2eUz8P8 Twitter: http://bit.ly/1gZdki8 Website: http://bit.ly/1dBeHku Goodreads: http://bit.ly/184qzve



Title: Sweet Spot
Author: Stella Rhys
Genre: Romantic Comedy/Contemporary Romance
Release Date: March 30, 2017



Blurb

Our first meeting as neighbors was screwed from the start.

He was hot. I was naked. And we had no chance in hell at ever being platonic. 

I’ll be the first to admit that I live at extremes. After going ten years locked in what felt like a dysfunctional marriage, I’m now decidedly boy-free. In nearly three years I’ve had no boyfriends, no flings, no dates and no sex. For the sake of my dream career, the sacrifice has been easy.

At least it was.

Until Lukas came along.

He’s rude, gorgeous, arrogant – a stone-carved wall of muscle and distraction. He’s everything I know to avoid but there’s no avoiding your next-door neighbor. Oh yeah. The man now lives three steps from me and to make matters worse, he crashed into my life while I was soaked in the tub. Mortifying to say the least and it went something like this: I ran out exposed. He looked. He laughed.

And then I locked myself out. 

In short, Lukas Hendricks was smirking, swaggering trouble from the start. And me?

I was – for the first time in years – about to be screwed.






Purchase Links

99c for a limited time

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

Free in Kindle Unlimited




Trailer




Author Bio

Stella Rhys is an author of contemporary romance and can't help but write it hot, steamy and borderline filthy (just kidding, it's flat-out filthy). Writing aside, she lives for coffee, the Yankees and cooking recipes way out of her league. She was born and raised in New York and now lives there with her husband and charmingly entitled fur baby.


Author Links

GOODREADS
TWITTER



Title: Fox
Author: S.M. Lumetta
Series: Bodhi Beach #1 (Standalone)
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Cover Design: S.M. Lumetta
Release Date: April 17, 2017



Blurb

What’s a little sex between friends?

Sophie Fordham never thought much about motherhood until her body forced her to. With the onset of early menopause, she knows if she wants to have a baby, it’s now or never. So what’s a single, financially-strapped girl to do? Go with what you know, of course.

Fox Monkhouse has been Sophie’s gorgeous best friend since preschool. This sun-kissed surfer boy has no shortage of ladies, but she’s hoping he’ll put that aside to help her out. As there’s never been anything romantic between the two, things get awkward when she asks him to put a bun in her oven—especially since it has to be done the old-fashioned, no-pants dance way.

When Fox agrees to do the deed, Sophie is ecstatic. But she soon realizes that this chance at a baby could cost her everything. Keeping sex and emotions separate is clearly not in her wheelhouse especially when her best friend is involved. If their relationship can’t evolve into something new, their unusual arrangement could destroy the friendship of a lifetime.





Pre-order Link







Author Bio

S.M. Lumetta was born in Detroit, MI, and now resides in NYC. Since she was small, she has adored storytelling in all its forms, especially books and films. Sooner and later, she figured out that since her love of words was overwhelming, she had no choice but to take the words in mind and share them. Romance is her favorite read, but horror and crime novels are a close second. She loves to travel and has a bucket list of places to visit long enough for several lifetimes. She also has a plethora of unnecessary t-shirts, a penchant for sarcasm, and a unholy love for the oxford comma.


Author Links

WEBSITE
TWITTER

Altercation
Mignon Mykel
(Playmaker Duet #1)
Publication date: March 1st 2017
Genres: New Adult, Romance, Sports
Sometimes it’s the fight that proves your worth.
Porter Prescott spent years fighting to be his own person.
His goal of playing for a hockey club not associated with the Prescott name finally comes true.
But just as he’s leaving for the next chapter in his life, he meets her.
Asher Spence spent a lifetime learning she was worthless and unwanted.
She learned that sometimes the only person you can count on is youself, and even then, you can fail.
What starts out as picture perfect can only come crumbling down.
No one listened to her pleas before,
Why should they listen to them now that she’s found a place to finally call home?
But sometimes, it’s the fight that takes you out of the game.
Note: This is book 1 of 2 in the Porter and Asher story. This does end with a cliffhanger that will be resolved in book 2, Holding.
You can also grab book 2 – Holding – that is OUT NOW!
EXCERPT:
I moved to stand where she’d be able to see me, not really caring if I was blocking the view for some other person waiting. I widened my stance and with my arms crossed over my chest, I kept my eyes trained as far back as I could see. My gaze shifted over the different travelers coming in; the only person I wanted to see was a brunette with crazy colored eyes.
And then I saw her.
The feeling that overtook me was like a drowning man getting his first breath of air. A starving man getting a fucking full-course meal.
She didn’t see me yet, but she would in time. There were maybe eighty people between us and she was nearing.
Her hair was braided over her shoulder, wisps of hair falling out and framing her face. She was wearing leggings and those damned boots of hers, but I was surprised to see her shirt was the girly type, long with cuts up the sides, nearly to her waist, and lacy sleeves that played peek-a-boo with the colors adorning her arm. She didn’t carry a bag, just her phone in one hand.
I licked my bottom lip before biting it gently, trying to stop the smile from spreading on my face. Didn’t want to look like a complete moron.
Forty feet.
Her gaze was down at the floor, no doubt watching where she was walking. It didn’t surprise me she was careful like that.
Thirty feet.
Look up, Asher…Look up.
Twenty feet.
Her face lifted and, like a magnet, her eyes locked on mine instantly.
And the smile on her face?
God damn.
There was no sense stopping my full-ass smile now, not with the one she just shot my way.
If you would have told me, four months ago, I would be the most celibate man in the history of earth, all for the glimpses of smiles from that girl there with more secrets behind her eyes than I could ever hope to uncover, I probably would have laughed in your face.
Four months ago, I was gearing up for my rookie season in South Carolina.
Four months ago, I was a kid with a big name, going to a team that had nothing to do with said big name.
Four months ago, it was rumored I would be the new hot shot in town. Nico certainly didn’t fail to show me the gossip sites, seemingly run by a bunch of puck bunnies.
But four months ago, I walked into Starbucks for a goodbye coffee with my sister, and met the girl with secrets.
And four months ago, I became addicted without so much as a taste.
Now that I’ve had that taste? Shit, I couldn’t wait for more.


Author Bio:
Mignon Mykel is the author of the Prescott Family series, as well as the short-novella erotic romance series, O'Gallagher Nights. When not sitting at Starbucks writing whatever her characters tell her to, you can find her hiking in the mountains of her new home in Arizona.

XBTBanner1



Title: Something Old
Series: Lone Star Match #1
Author: Megan Ryder
Publisher: Tule Publishing
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: March 30, 2017



Blurb

Three Bridesmaids. Three lost loves. One matchmaking bride. With just a week before the wedding, can a bride-to-be reunite her bridesmaids with the ones who got away? 

Delaney Winters never expected to see Ethan Van Owen again. He was part of a life she had left far behind… But now, with her best friend’s wedding coming up, it seems like her past has caught up to her. Forced to spend time with her former flame, Delaney’s feelings for him resurface, rekindling the white-hot passion that had always drawn them together.

For five years, Ethan has wondered what went wrong with their relationship. After Delaney broke up with him, Ethan moved to Texas Wine Country to start a new life. But now, he is being pressured to take up the mantle of his family investment business and return to Houston to confront his past.

Can Delaney and Ethan bury their past to rekindle the love and passion they once shared?






Purchase Links

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU





Excerpt

She raised up on tiptoes, lips inches from his. "I can't wait any longer. I want my prize."

He groaned and wrapped a hand around her waist, hauling her up against him. She pressed her lips against his, and she ran her tongue along the seam of his until he opened and let her inside. Drugged with power, feeling more in control than ever before, she pressed her advantage, plastering herself against his long frame, feeling the evidence of his arousal against her throbbing core. Her panties dampened and she moaned against his mouth, her control slipping away rapidly, along with all her inhibitions and reservations about the evening, Ethan, and herself.

He slid his hands down to lightly skim her ass then cup both globes and pull her closer. In a sudden move, he shifted positions, never breaking their lips, and pinned her against the wall. She gasped and broke the kiss, the world tilting dangerously around her. She rested her head against the cool brick, and he trailed kisses down her exposed throat. He pushed aside the shoulder of the tank top and placed a kiss at the top of her shoulder. His hand stroked down her arm and under her shirt to tease her breasts through the lace of her bra.

She moaned at the sensations coursing through her, burning up from the inside, feelings and emotions buffeting her from all angles, like the waves in the ocean. She throbbed deep inside and she pressed her legs together to find some relief. He chuckled against her shoulder and wedged a thigh between hers, forcing them apart. She wrapped her leg around his, hiking it as high as she could. He dropped a hand to her thigh and pulled her up and closer to him, until only a few layers of fabric were between his cock and her slit, begging for him. She arched closer to him, pleading for his touch, for relief, for anything. His hand slipped under her thigh and higher, close to her aching core. His other hand kneaded her breast, his thumb rubbing against her nipple through the lace, the rough lace creating deeper friction and heat than she had ever expected. It was all she could to hold on. He was her anchor in a roiling sea of emotions and she needed relief.

He pressed against her, his cock rubbing her through the lightweight material of their shorts. Then he hit a spot and she exploded with a soft cry.




Author Bio

Ever since Megan Ryder discovered Jude Deveraux and Judith McNaught while sneaking around the “forbidden” romance section of the library one day after school, she has been voraciously devouring romance novels of all types. Now a romance author in her own right, Megan pens sexy contemporary novels all about family and hot lovin’ with the boy next door.



Author Links

Hunted
Lisa Hughey
(ALIAS, #2)
Publication date: February 28th 2017
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
Hunted: There’s only one thing worse than seeing your unrequited crush every day at the office…and that’s getting trapped with him in a snowy mountain cabin.
Maria Torres has been through hell and back. A former kidnapping victim, she’s used to being famous for all the wrong reasons and having people handle her with kid gloves. And it seems that the man of her dreams, Dwayne Lameko, is no different.
So when an ALIAS client requests her presence on an op, Maria believes she’s ready to spread her wings and prove all her co-workers wrong…especially Dwayne. But when danger follows them into the wilderness, Maria has no choice but to prove to herself and Dwayne that she’s strong enough to handle anything…even his love.
Maria Torres was first introduced in the Family Stone series, Still the One. She finally gets her happily ever after.
EXCERPT:
He was sorry? She stepped to her left, trying again to go around him and get away from his dominating presence. “I don’t need your pity.”
He stepped to his right, blocking her way again. He loomed over her, but she didn’t feel threatened. Caged, anxious to get away from him? Yes.
But not scared. She knew in her soul he wouldn’t hurt her.
“You really think pity is what I feel?” He tipped his head, bringing their faces closer together. So close she was again aware of the flecks of brown and green and gold in his dark eyes.
“No. Yes. I don’t know.” She’d been lost for eight years. Social cues bewildered her. She had no idea what he was thinking. She only knew she needed to get away from him.
But he appeared oddly hurt.
His broad shoulders blocked the fading light from the window, casting the kitchen in shadows and mystery.
“I would never hurt you.”
Not physically. “I know.”
As if he couldn’t help himself, he cupped her shoulders in his big palms. Maria’s breath caught. Held.
He was touching her again. Third time today.
#
Dwayne frowned. Maria had tensed beneath his hands.
On the ride from the airport, the scent of her shampoo had swirled in his senses. When she’d stroked the leather seat of the of the Range Rover, he’d started to get an erection, imagining her stroking him in more intimate places. But that was never going to happen.
His stomach churned with regret. “Then why are you still so upset?”
Her body language was all wrong. She was stiff, uncomfortable, and he didn’t know why. Her shoulders were delicate beneath his much larger palms. “No one touches me.”
Shit. He lifted his hands away from her body, fast. “Sorry.” Jesus, he’d apologized to her more in the past hour than he’d apologized to anyone in years. He was a “live and let live” guy with solid core values and a confidence in his moral compass.
“No. No.” She straightened her shoulders, stared defiantly. “No one touches me.”
His heart clenched. No one touched her? He thought about his family. They were always touching. Affectionate. He recalled her stiffness in his mother’s arms.
“Why?”
“They’re afraid.”
Dwayne snorted. She was five feet of nothing with soft curves and a sweet smile. “Of what?”
She shrugged. Looked out the kitchen window over the sink. “I’m a freak,” she said softly. “Nature or nurture. Except I didn’t have any nurture for…a while.”
“I’m sorry.”
She stomped her foot. “Don’t be sorry. Talk to me.”
How could she throw him so far off his stride? “I am.”
“Not like you talk to other…people.”
Other people?
“Women. Dwayne.” Once she let go, she let go. “Other women. You flirt, you tease. But with me, you just….”
Avoid. Of course he did. He wanted her far too much.
What the hell had Jillian been thinking to pair them together on this op? He took an instinctive step back.
“Am I so repellent then?”
What? “It’s not you.”
She laughed harshly. “C’mon, Dwayne. I might have been in forced solitary confinement for eight years but even I know that’s bullshit.”
He blinked. He’d never heard her swear before.
“It’s not bullshit,” he began defensively.
She snorted, that little sound of derision goading him. “Right.” Her sarcasm hit him in the gut. When she didn’t argue any more, didn’t fight back, underscoring the truth that she didn’t believe him, something snapped.
“I’m attracted to you.” The confession burst out of him with an alarming speed.
Her mouth opened and closed like she was a fish out of water. “What?” she said faintly. A deep burgundy flush spread up her neck and over her face, her eyes sparkling with temper. He’d clearly rendered her speechless.
“You heard me the first time.”


Author Bio:
USA Today Bestselling Author Lisa Hughey has been writing romance since the fourth grade, which was also about the time she began her love affair with spies. Harriet and Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys later gave way to James Bond and Lara Croft and Jason Bourne.
Exploring the complex nature of a profession that requires subterfuge and lies fascinates her. She loves combining her two passions into fiction. As evidenced by her Black Cipher Files series.
Archangel Rafe was her first foray into the paranormal but after spending time in the Angelic Realm, it won't be her last. At their heart, the Seven novels are about the dynamics of family relationships. But the really hot Archangels don't hurt.
And recently she's been immersed in the Stone Family novellas, four stories about a blended family of brothers and sister who have a lot more in common than they realize. But of course she couldn't just write about family and romance. There are complex plots, bad guys, and suspense too.
Lisa loves to hear from readers and has various places you can connect with her, although, shh, Twitter is her favorite.

XBTBanner1
Title: Junior
Series: A Wyrdos Tale, #3
Author: Gwendolyn Druyor
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date:  March 31, 2017
You can die of fright. 
Junior can’t live without it. 
Junior Leo just found out he’s the boogeyman’s bastard and his job is to terrify children. 
Trick is, none of us ever really grow up. We’re all children at heart. 
Even Junior. 
It’s the rare child that dreams of growing up to be a villain. Junior never did. But can you fight your genetic inheritance? Could he be a hero? 
He’s been hiding from the question for eight years but he’s about to encounter an ancient artifact that’s going to show everyone the truth about Junior Leo.
Especially, Junior Leo.
Junior is the third standalone in the Wyrdos Tales series. The Tales each feature a different supernatural character’s involvement in the same apocalyptic event. You get to live it through different eyes each time. 
If you like the work of Jim Butcher, T S Paul, and Shayne Silvers, then you will love all the books in The Wyrdos Tales series by Gwendolyn Druyor!

Copyright © 2017 by Gwendolyn Druyor
All Rights Reserved

1
DON’T SLEEP
Don’t sleep with your closet door open.
When you were a child, you believed there were monsters in the closet. You watched your mom or dad or legal court appointed guardian leave your bedroom. They’d snake a hand back in through the doorway and flip off your light. With no consideration for the sliver of light they could leave you through the crack of that door, they shut it with a click. In the dark—no matter how many siblings share your room, in the dark you are always alone. You try breathing quietly, but he can hear the beating of your heart. You stare at the closet, thinking that if you don’t blink he can’t sneak up on you. But the dark is his ally. He can see your eyes glowing in the dark. And he can move invisibly through your room, under your bed. He’ll paralyze you with fear so that you cannot escape. So shut your eyes tight and pull the covers over your head if it makes you feel better. But it won’t help. If you leave the closet door open, the boogeyman can get you.

2
The Trap
“Sorry, wrong room.” Junior turned to flee back into the bedroom closet.
He rebounded off a shimmering, intractable wall of air. The force sent him tripping backwards, avoiding the wailing infant that had drawn him into the room.
A few feet beyond the magical circle, under an outdated mobile of the solar system, a dusky boy of about ten sat crosslegged on a rag rug, his hands poised over the shuttle of a ouija board, his jaw hanging open.
The kid squeaked, coughed, and then exclaimed, “Holy crap, it worked! I caught the boogeyman!”
Junior fell against the side of the prison closest to the kid, who flinched. Junior used the magical wall to steady himself with one combat-booted foot on either side of the six-month-old’s flailing limbs. His pale hands glowed where they touched the magic. The gauze wrapped around each palm lit up. The bandages sizzled though he felt nothing on his burnt fingers. He pressed a hand flat and saw the bones through the bandages and skin as clearly as on an x-ray. Of course, skeletal as he was, he could see them almost that clearly without a magical prison wall for enhancement.
The wall rose from a chain of silverware encircling Junior in his peacoat and the wailing baby in her too-big Ewok onesie. It trapped them in the middle of a larger-than-average bedroom with books, clothes, and action figures strewn literally everywhere. Harley Quinn straddled the deep bowl of a torchiere floor lamp on the far side of a bed covered with a tangle of Star Wars sheets and a Batman comforter. A disturbingly muscular Spiderman dangled by red yarn from an air vent high on one wall. Just outside the circle of silverware, Junior saw Deadpool laying face-down in a pile of dirty socks, threatened by Wonder Woman wielding his own katana.
Junior couldn’t smell the socks. He could barely hear the hiss of the standing humidifier half-buried in a Slytherin cloak. The shimmering walls of his prison dulled everything outside. Inside the bright, nose-tickling powder of freshly-washed baby battled his own indefinable homeless musk. He brushed his teeth as often as he could and washed his face, socks, and underwear every few nights. His jeans and t-shirts got cleaned much less frequently.  
Pretty much every square inch of the bedroom’s plush carpet was covered except for a swath of space just in front of the closet door and within the circle of Junior and the baby’s prison. The walls fared no better. Pale green paint peeked out from the rare spaces between overlapping posters of superheroes, scientific theories, astrology, and Ohio.
The kid leapt to his feet, whacking his head on Jupiter and sending the planets spinning.  He gripped his curly black hair with both hands and then grabbed his Captain America pajama pants before they fell down. “I caught the boogeyman!”
Junior was too hungry and tired for this. He had somewhere to be. He reached up and ran a hand along the impenetrable, shimmering barrier of air stretching from ceiling to floor, searching for weaknesses. He found none.
“Let me go.”
His captor laughed. “Hell no.”
The wailing settled to silence as the towheaded baby sucked in a tiny lungful of air. Her mouth opened wide in an astonished O and she seemed to look right into Junior’s hazel eyes. Then she squeezed her own eyes, opened her mouth and renewed screaming. Junior crouched to comfort her. It was why he’d come through the door in the first place. “There, there. It’s okay. You’re okay.”
The kid chanted, “I did it! I caught the boogeyman. I caught the boogeyman.” He kicked the ouija board aside and danced around the room, scattering toys. When he passed the full-length mirror on his bedroom door, he spun around to announce to himself, “I, Ethan Durnell, caught the boogeyman.”
Junior stood, bouncing the baby girl in his arms, careful at first of her weight on his ruined hands. “No. You didn’t.”
Ethan turned, his brown eyes glowing. He held his arms out to the sides, inviting his guest to come at him. “Really? You can get out of there?”
Junior considered kicking the silverware but he was pretty sure he wouldn’t be able to break the spell. He sighed and crooned at the crying baby. “Please let me go. I’ve got somewhere to be and I’m not the boogeyman.”
The kid smirked, “Yeah right. You came out of my closet, but you’re not the boogeyman?”
“It’s complicated.”
“You have to grant me three wishes now.”
Junior raised an eyebrow at the kid. “That’s a djinni.”
“Isn’t the boogeyman a genie?”
“No, he’s an as—” Junior censored himself. The kid was a jerk but he was still a kid. “The boogeyman is a type of goblin.”
“Ewwww,” Ethan plopped down on the edge of his bed. “You’re a goblin?”
Junior cooed at the baby. “Is this your sister?”
“Half-sister.”
Junior noted the bile in Ethan’s tone. “What’s her name?”
“Dawn.” He spit the word. “She’s the dawn of their new life together.”
At that, Junior looked up. He stopped bouncing. “Really?”
Ethan nodded.
Dawn’s cries increased.
“Okay.” Junior rocked the unfortunately named baby as he paced around the small circle. This wasn’t an easy life. Jane said he should think of it as a calling. And Jane was a god; he should trust her advice. But it wasn’t a calling. He could travel from closet to closet and paralyze people with fear. That didn’t sound like a calling. Or a life. It sounded like the genetic lottery had handed him a sack of lemons.
“You’re not so ugly, for being a goblin. Aren’t goblins hideous?” Ethan lay on the bed, examining Junior.
Junior let his pacing take him back around to face the kid before he responded. Ethan could see him. Most people were so racked with fear every moment of their lives, they couldn’t see Junior at all. But Ethan, in the dark of the middle of the night, could see him. What ten-year-old was so fearless? He looked at the boy. “A) Thanks. B) I’m half-goblin. I’m not the boogeyman, kid. I’m the boogeyman’s kid.”
“Sooooo, wouldn’t that make you a boogeyman, then?”
“People don’t talk about a boogeyman. They talk about the boogeyman. That’s my dad.”
“But you just came out of my closet.”
“Sure. I can also roll my tongue because my mother could. What’s that got to do with who I am?”
The ten-year-old scrunched his face like he was talking to an idiot. “Everything.”
“No!” Junior stomped one booted foot. “I don’t want to be the boogeyman.”
Dawn had almost calmed. He shouldn’t have scared her. He looked down at her wide-open eyes staring at nothing. She was so scared she couldn’t see him. He sighed.
“Please let me go, Ethan.”
“No. I called you and caught you fair and square.”
“What do you want, kid? Why did you call me here? You really thought the boogeyman could grant wishes?”
Ethan shrugged. “Whatever.” He bounced over to a book on the floor by the door and dropped down to flip through the pages. “The instructions were for summoning a demon but that seemed, like, really stupid to me.”
“Yeah.” Junior shivered. “Yeah, that would be stupid. You don’t want a demon in your bedroom.”
Ethan spun around. “You’ve seen a demon?”
“Earlier today.”
“Cool.”
“No. It wasn’t cool at all. It was terrifying.”
“You’re an adult. Adults don’t get scared.”
Junior snorted. Dawn giggled. “You have a lot to learn kid.”
“So tell me. Nobody ever tells kids anything. It’s like we’re invisible until we do something wrong.”
“Like use your baby sister as bait to catch a demon.”
“You’re not a demon.” The kid kicked at the ouija board. 
“No, but I am a monster. You want to know things? Listen.”
“I do. I’m always listening to the blah, blah, blah—”
“Now, Ethan! I mean shut up and listen now. You want to know about feeling invisible?” Junior let the words tumble out. “I have been invisible for eight years. Eight years ago when you were still as cute as Dawn, I discovered that I could travel through time and space using bedroom closets. I traveled back in time and did something stupid. Now I can’t get back to my life. I’m stuck in this world, this . . .” He struggled to find the word.
“Alternate timeline.” Ethan scrambled over to his pale blue bookshelf and dug through the pile of books on the floor around it. He waved A Wrinkle in Time in the air, hitting the solar system mobile again.
“Never read it.”
The kid gave Junior a pitying look.
“I’m stuck in this alternate timeline where I’m older than my mother who has no son.”
Dawn gurgled around the two fingers she’d stuck in her mouth. Junior looked down. Her pale blue eyes were still wide but he couldn’t tell if she could see him or not. She stared at the wobbling planets. He cooed at her to calm himself. Ethan waited.
“I’m invisible to anyone who’s afraid, which is, sorry to tell you kid, everyone. I can make people see me but that paralyzes them. I can travel anywhere in the world through closets, but only through bedroom closets for some reason.”
“And you can time travel.” Ethan tossed a Dr. Who action figure in the air. “Just go back if you want to.”
“I don’t know how I did it. I don’t know how I do any of it. I don’t want to scare people.” He mumbled down at Dawn, “I don’t want to be the boogeyman.”
“Sorry, dude. Sometimes you’re given a sister and you just have to deal with it. That’s the way it is.”
Junior looked up from the baby. He raised his eyebrows at Ethan. “A) You don’t strike me as one of those kids who just repeats what others say.”
Ethan hung his head at that. He pretended to pick at a smudge on his pajama pants.
“B) I am a monster who tortures kids. I accept that. Fine. Maybe kids like you deserve to be tortured. But I met a demon today who tortured a grown woman who definitely didn’t deserve to die. I am the only one who can get to her grandson, a kid named Louis. That’s where I was going when you trapped me here. Do you know what it’s like to lose someone you love?”
Ethan sat, leaning against the shelves crammed with books. He shrugged.
Junior turned away to face the open closet on the far side of the silver ring. He sucked in deep, slow breaths. He didn’t have a lot of time. If he wanted to help Louis, he had to get there now. One of Ethan’s many posters featured a listing of age appropriate books with checkmarks drawn in beside most of them. His doorway was blocked with a Bartlett’s, a dictionary, and the Bevington edition of the Complete Works of Shakespeare. Ethan himself was surrounded by books on the shelves and on the floor around him.
He faced the kid. “You like a good story?”
“Duh.”
Junior ran a hand through his unruly mop of dirty blond curls. “How about I tell you a story. If you like it, you let me go.”
“It’s gotta be a good story.”
Junior grinned down at Dawn then raised his eyes to Ethan’s. “Duh.”
The kid rolled over to his bed. He settled into the corner created by his bed and the bookshelf and hugged his knees to his chest. “Go.”
Junior shook his head. “Do we have a deal?”
“Yeah.”
“You’ll let me go?”
“Yeah. I already said I would. I’m not my dad either. I don’t say things if I don’t mean them. I’m not gonna tell you I’ll let you go and then poof, ha ha, sorry, I have to work and you’re stuck here with Dawn and—”
“Ethan.” Junior waited while the kid wound down again. “You called me here and trapped me. I may not be a demon or the real boogeyman, but still, you have to know a little something about magic to have gotten this far. Yes?”
“Yeah.”
“So you have to promise to let me go, three times.”
“Oh. Then it’s binding and I can’t welsh.”
“Yeah.”
“Fine. I’ll let you go. I’ll let you go. I’ll let you go.” He said. “After your story.”
Junior nodded. “Where are we?”
Ethan glanced up at a map on the wall like Junior should have already seen it and known. “Ohio.”
“Well this story takes place in Illinois. In Chicago. It’s the story of how meeting a few real monsters made me realize I’m not so bad.” Junior frowned down at Dawn’s infectious grin as he thought about where to begin. A lot had happened in the past twelve hours. 
Gwendolyn Druyor was born at the Quonset Point Naval Air Station Hospital, North Kingston, RI. The ID bracelet wrapped three times around her little wrist. She could swim before she could walk and read before she started school. Thanks to her pilot father, Gwendolyn got to grow up in Maine, Ohio, and Illinois. After completing 3 performance-based degree programs in 4 years at Illinois State University (with a minor in English), she started her illustrious acting career as a saloon girl dancing the cancan in upstate New York. 
Gwendolyn has traveled the world telling stories. She spent a year in Amsterdam writing and performing sketch comedy at Boom Chicago with Seth Meyers (Late Night with Seth Meyers), Allison Silverman (Colbert Report), and Greg Scott Shapiro(voice of the Dutch Trump!).

She’s toured North America with Shenandoah Shakespeare (11 people in 3 vehicles performing 78 roles) and with the incredible improv/educational show Sex Signals in an effort to make sex better for all. 
Since kinda sorta settling down, Gwendolyn has written for and performed with various sketch groups in the states, including The Future Dead, Improv International, and G2 Productions. For now she lives in Hollywood with her Irish Jack Russell, Josh Lyman Zyrga, who is still pissed she didn’t put him on the cover of Laylea. 
For more information on Gwendolyn and her projects sign up for her newsletter at www.GwendolynDruyor.com

HOSTED BY: