UPDATE JUNE 17, 2018:
The first 4 chapters + a glossary are available to download or read in pdf!
Visit the Incarnations page!
It started with one body, and soon became four. No connection, other than the strange field that keeps their bodies from decaying. As if that wasn’t mystery enough, an ancient sentient language appears near the latest corpse.
Vikenti’s the magical cop assigned this case and he isn’t pleased. Experts are baffled and he’s impatient. He wants this case solved, because it’s looking more and more likely there’s a serial killer at large targeting both the magical and non-magical communities.
He isn’t the only one having problems.
Sloane wants answers for the nightmare that ruined her life over a decade ago, turning her into an outcast in her own city. Fawkes and Corrin want to know more of who they are, Keiran wants clarity, and Besin wants to know why his beloved language has resurfaced after all these years. Ven and Enria want to find their lost family, Jade wants justice, and Harper wants to forget. Meanwhile, twin brothers Cypress and Hunter are on the run from everyone just for being born.
Everyone has a story. Everyone has a past.
Everyone has darkness that can find them, and everyone will learn so much more than they expected about themselves, about the world, about life itself.
It started with one body, but the story that body tells is so much more than a simple murder.
Will be Book Two in Wildwood Rising.
LGBTQIA+ sci-fi/fantasy. Some details have changed since when I first posted of this book, as I originally planned to have it be its own standalone story before I decided to integrate it in with Incarnations. Cast will definitely include: gay, lesbian(-ish), straight, asexual, agender/nonbinary, and a wide variety of “races” including skin tones. One main character is also someone who is blind.
Writing status: partial first draft completed before I decided to integrate with Incarnations. Will require a lot of rewriting and editing.
Will be Book Three in Wildwood Rising.
LGBTQIA+ sci-fi/fantasy. This is another book I had planned to be standalone before I realized I could change some key factors and integrate it into Wildwood Rising instead. Characters not fully fleshed out yet. Will definitely feature lesbian leads. The rest is unknown as of yet but likely will be reflective of similar casts in previous Wildwood Rising books.
Writing status: minimally plotted out, will require major overhaul when I get to it to make it consistent with Wildwood Rising as a whole, and to pull in characters from previous books.
There will be more books in Wildwood Rising, most likely. Also LGBTQIA+ sci-fi/fantasy. What will it be named, what will it be about, who will be featured, what will happen?
Only time will tell.
Hey there’s a good name, maybe I should call it Time Will Tell ^_~
(There’s a slight possibility I might try pulling The Memory Remains in on this series but that would require such a major overhaul I’m not sure if I’ll bother. Just a note ahead of time.)
Excerpt – the woman imprisoned
read in full here
“You didn’t have to, friend.” She closed her eyes and tipped her head backward, feeling the catch of her hair on the wall, letting her hands rise to her sides palm upward. “The witch knows all.”
“I don’t believe that.”
She dropped her hands to her side and shrugged, spearing him with her gaze. “I don’t care what you believe.” She stood, not quickly but for him still too swift a movement. He startled back a step, hands raising in claws. She quirked an eyebrow and padded to the edge of the cell, watching the tension rise in him every soft step forward. Until her fingers curled around the cool bars, and she pressed her face to them, watching him watch her.
“Tell me,” she said, “what do you seek?”
He swallowed. Debated internally— go closer to prove he wasn’t afraid? Or stay there where it’s safe and risk losing face? She didn’t need to be a mind-reader to understand this, and yet her knowing smile made him blanch.
Everywhere fear, for her kind.
THIS FRIABLE WORLD EXCERPT: part one, or, that jacket tho
You never learn.
Mazra’s eyebrows shot up and she pulled back. Over her shoulder in the mirror, she saw Aalya. Standing in the hallway that had just been empty.
As always, Aalya was in her black skinny jeans with the rips, a large light-colored knitted sweater falling off one shoulder with her black bralette strap showing, and lace-up brown leather boots that were nearly worn through and had too many straps and zippers. Her earrings glinted in the light, and her hair fell in tousled waves nearly all the way down to her ankles. Mazra always wondered why someone with such long hair would keep it shaved in a swatch behind each ear.
But, more than anything, it was Aalya’s face that drew Mazra. The slightly slanted marigold eyes, the thick dark eyelashes, the lips that were small but perfectly formed. The consternated expression she wore by default.
Would her voice have been different than what Mazra heard in her mind, if Aalya could talk?
Mazra pulled the jacket off her shoulders and walked forward, holding it out. Aalya looked down at it, then met Mazra’s eyes without bothering to reach out.
Mazra quirked an eyebrow. “Okay. If you say so.”
Aalya watched Mazra’s lips, unable to hear the words, reading them in shape as well as in thought.
As always, Aalya knew the circumstances from that alone. She crossed her arms at her stomach.
“It’s fine,” Mazra said with a shrug. “No one will ever believe me about you as long as I’m the only one who sees and hears you.”
RECIPROCAL EXCERPT: Reina’s Story
“She’s dead!” Reina yelled back, hearing the frantic catch in her own voice. She desperately moved her hands around the woman, somehow thinking she could bring her back to life if she only knew how. “No, no, she’s dead, she’s dead, oh my god— Check the driver!”
She distantly heard a commotion but couldn’t pay attention to it. Somewhere even further in the distance, sirens blared. Reina twisted around toward the sound, hoping to see how far away it was, hoping somehow the EMTs could work a miracle where she could not.
Someone was standing behind her.
Reina was startled, seeing first the legs and feet. She was about to look up when she realized this person, this bystander, had the damn audacity to pick up the woman’s dirty boots from the ground and put them on. What kind of lowlife—
Private Investigator Julian Jones had his finger on the pulse in Lexington, PA, but didn’t realize just how involved he would become. This series is set in the past of In the Company of Shadows (ICoS) and features Cedrick, Vivienne, Boyd Beaulieu, and others.
IMPORTANT: Contains spoilers for ICoS, if you plan to read ICoS do not read until you’ve finished Fade! If you never plan to read ICoS and want to read this, go for it 🙂
I’m also working on Domino, another ICoS spin-off. This one will follow Vivienne Beaulieu’s story, from childhood through the “end” of ICoS (aka, what’s released so far). I don’t think I’ve released any excerpts yet. I need to do a lot more research to make it accurate to that time and energy in France, where she was born and raised.Domino
Deliverance – download/read here
Luke, an undercover agent from the US, is on assignment in Fiji to stop a terrorist attack before it begins. But the ghosts of his past are resurfacing at the same time he learns that he has a lot less time to find the terrorists than he thought. Features m/m and love triangle. Written for TSP Anthology. *Important note: Muslims are NOT the terrorists in this story! I mention this so you don’t confuse the combination of excerpt below with this summary*
Voivoi mats were already spread across the floor in the main room, covering the rug beneath it that was starting to wear through in areas. He heard voices murmuring behind a closed door. It was what he thought of as the Muallaf room; the place of converts.
The door opened as he settled on his knees on the edge of one of the voivoi mats. He looked over to see Saleem walking out of the room, his angular face serene as always while his body blocked the others Luke could just see behind him. A man’s voice droned in the background even as the door swung quietly closed.
“La ilaha illa Allah, Muhammadur rasoolu Allah…”
Luke had always found the Shahada to sound beautiful and fluid, like much of Arabic did
to the untrained ear.
Never Odd or Even – read here
A palindrome story, because I’m a nerd.
He would never understand why he had agreed to this.
“This door is green,” he said blankly.
Silis looked up from the long box he was in the middle of opening. The box cutter’s blade paused at the threshold of breaking through the plastic tie.
He grinned. “I know. Nice, right?”
“That’s… not the word I was looking for.”
JJ stared at the offending door in distaste. It wasn’t even a nice shade of green. It was some sort of weird hybrid of cucumber and snot. It looked like puke. It was pretty much just puke.
“I got it at a discount,” Silis continued proudly.
“Was it free?”
“Then it wasn’t discounted enough.”
Unconnected shorts: Liza and Kaylee – read here
“This one?” The woman’s eyebrows rose along with the book in her hand. “You’ve read it? Really?”
“Yes! I didn’t think I’d ever see a copy of it out of my school library.”
She laughed and the woman joined in.
“I didn’t think I’d ever find another person who had read it…”
“Yeah, well, I’m a bit of a book nerd that way.” Liza smiled self-consciously and held out her hand. “I’m Liza.”
Why the hell did I hold out my hand? she thought in a panic at the same time the other woman grasped it and, with gentle pressure, shook it. Their palms were warm against one another. All Liza could think about was the softness of that touch.
“Kaylee. It’s nice to meet you.”
The Edge of Reason – read here
The water was as still as the dead, or at least as still as Julienne had once believed the dead to be. She had later learned there were so many things happening inside the body, as many things in death as in life, to the point that calling the dead ‘still’ was a misnomer. The dead writhed, or at least the body did, but perhaps the soul itself was still.
The water was as still as the soul.
It bled a deep crimson light that glowed just beneath the surface with no discernible origin. Beyond the black basin of its shores, the dark sentinels of trees whipped furiously about in the wind. The sky above was black as only the night could be, and even the stars had seemed to retreat beyond the ink. The moon was missing, but then, it had never properly existed in this realm.
Writing group shorts – read here
Example – the arsonist
It was a coitus of fire and water, with a lovechild named Steam. Flames the color of amber and sunsets jumped high into the air, creating absolute mayhem on the street. Panic was a cheap perfume, heady and strong and lingering long after it should have been gone.
Smoke obscured reality or perhaps reality obscured the smoke, leaving a hazy afterimage. Some jackass with a Mercedes had parked in front of the fire hydrant and the firefighters had long ago smashed through the windows to drag the hose through. The wheels shone wetly with spraying water and the aftereffects of an arsonist.
First and First had become a hub of activity, and it was within the bounds of the chaos that He came.
Some called him ‘alien’ but I called him ‘friend.’
He had landed here long ago, maybe fifty years or more– so long ago it was a wonder civilization had been there at all to accept him. He had traits galore but the most damning of all was his fascination with love.
He stood there now, in a cranberry cashmere sweater and grey linen pants that were entirely out of season. An orchid was clutched in his hand, a smell of rosemary ever lingering. He had not yet learned that herbs were not cologne, and was determined to start a trend that would earn him millions and the admiration of the ladies.
He had found a woman with carrot-orange hair and a delicate smile. He approached, so cocksure of himself because he had recently reapplied the rosemary.
When he stepped up behind her, he whispered, “Let me take you to my rocket, baby. Once we reach liftoff we shall dance among the stars.”
“But I’m a terrestrial,” she protested.
He looked at her and said only, “Aren’t we all.”
In his mind it was suave and persuasive. In her mind it was creepy.
She said disgustedly, “No,” and walked off.
But there would be more like her, next time a fire raged uncontrolled in a neighborhood.
It was why he had started the fire: to bring the ladies out. Because everyone knew fire burned to be watched.
He was the only arsonist alien I ever knew.
*If you are not a Patron and it won’t let you read the poetry on Patreon and you’re interested, just let me know and I can set them to go public later. I forgot if I set it as early access or Patron-only*
In the Company of Shadows
written 11/6/2003 by Ais
I was waiting for forgiveness
In the Russian-plated room
With a candle as a roommate
Shards of glass that faltered, crooned
As I trembled with the splinters
And held my arm away
I witnessed the creation
Of crimson-tinted stains
They spread across my kneecaps
And drip-dropped to the floor
I sat there grinning, laughing
For I could do no more
In the dismal water shadows
As shallow as my heart
I watched my freedom’s murder
And even took a part
For the darkness spoke of answers
That the light had never shown
Take your pity and repentance
Myself, I’m going home.
This is a list of unrelated short stories or collections of writings.Unrelated Original Works