Sunday, February 13, 2011

Sneak Peek: Seismic Evil

Seismic Evil, the second Chance Monroe novel, releases tomorrow!  So here's a little early Valentine sneak peek at the novel that returns to Northern Virginia and the land of hedge witch Chance Monroe.  Returning are Chance's best friend Sydney Jump, her ex-lover Jack Parker, FBI ally/nemesis Victor Callanport and guardian Jaime Smith.   If you haven't picked up Prime Evil, today would be a great day to dive into that adventure so you are ready for more urban fantasy and paranormal suspense.  

But I have a special giveaway for one lucky commentator.  Tell me who your favorite supporting character in Prime Evil was and why and I'll offer you a copy of Seismic Evil and my recently released anthology, Seven Souls a Leaping.  For fans who may not know,  Chance's  Sydney makes a special cameo in my novella 13th Night.

Just comment with your favorite character, a sentence or two about why and an email address I can send your copies too!  I'll pull the winner on Tuesday!

Video and excerpt after the jump!

Seismic Evil Excerpt:

Jaime waited for me between two fields heavy with soy and chaos. A summer storm of electrical impulses shivered over the surface of my skin. Familiarity pulsed through the air. Currents of masculine energy thick with Jaime's distinctive flavor carried a balm for my jangling nerves. My gaze cut to the gaggle of humanity huddled close to the road. Cars were parked two deep. Jaime jerked his head to the right, indicating that I needed to follow him, and took two long strides off the dirt road into the dark green soy, all six plus feet of him vanishing. He left me little choice but to trudge after him.

I paused, studying the even flattening of the plants. A four-foot wide swath lay flat against the ground as though felled by a sleeping spell.

"Crop circles? Seriously?" The words frothed with skepticism.

"Wait. This is unusual." Jaime held up his hand, seriousness buzzing around him.
The earth's awareness flooded through me. Guardian. Friend. Companion. The land recognized Jaime with a wave of tenderness and acceptance.

Jaime. His real name was James Ian Smith, but he would always be Jaime to those of us who had tormented him in grade school. Despite the generic moniker, his Native American heritage showed proudly in his strong cheekbones and prominent nose. A long, thin scar that ran from the corner of his lip to the middle of his chin spoke of things he left unmentioned.

He motioned for me to follow. A glance over my shoulder afforded me the view of a heavy camera perched on the shoulder of a burly, squat fellow.
Behind me are the crop jerker crazies with the news crew and in front of me is the crop circle with the old friend asking for a favor. Crop circles win hands down.
I would not ask about Mulder and Scully. I would not ask about cattle mutilations. I would not ask about saucers from space. I would not, could not, Chance I Am. "A crop circle?"

"Three." His index finger swirled in a circular motion around the area. "Four foot avenues connecting each one."

"It's probably a hoax…"

A man waited for us, sharing Jaime's exceptional height. His grizzled cheeks and bloodshot eyes fostered stress, exhaustion and annoyance. Salt and pepper hair edged down to the collar of his stained work shirt. Mud spattered his worn leather, work boots and rough cuffed jeans.

"That's what I told him, ma'am. But he insisted on calling you before we let the 'experts' out there trample the evidence."

"Chance, Greg Brandon. Greg, this is Chance Monroe. Tell her why you called me, Greg."

First name basis with Jaime. Most just called him Tracker if they called him anything. Interesting.

Greg leaned sideways to spit. His gazed dropped to focus on his boots and the flattened soy plants beneath them. He so did not want to be here. Exhaling, he rubbed a hand against his neck, as though milking the words from his memory. "Horses got out this morning after the quake. About six of them, all mares, all pregnant, so I went looking for them. I found five of them about ten feet from the barn."

"Smart not to go too far from the food." I shuttled aside my personal disbelief, discontent and disdain for crop circles. The farmer's clear discomfort tweaked my objections on the nose. I swallowed back the aches and pains from the morning’s earthquake and focused on the here and the now. Poor guy looked like he needed that much.

"Exactly. But Molly…Molly wasn't there. She's my daughter's Saddlebred. I don't know why I decided to look out here, but Dana loves to ride out here in the summer when the corn is in so I…well, to be honest," he looked up from beneath his lowered eyelids, forehead crinkled. The submissive posture was out of place on the robust man. "I don't know why I came out here. This is practically the middle of the soy fields. I have about one-hundred-twenty acres turned over to soy right now. But there was Molly, standing right here, just…waiting. She wasn't moving, not her ears, not her lashes. I needed to touch her to see if she was even breathing and when I did…" His face, already ruddy from time in the sun went red.

"You can tell her Greg. She's not going to judge." Jaime gave his shoulder a firm squeeze, knuckles whitening before letting his hand fall away.

Greg looked up, gaze meeting mine for the first time since I walked into the circle. Heat suffused his cheeks, puffing them out with each harsh exhale. "I touched Molly's shoulder and well, I felt…it."

"Felt what?" Detachment was the right tack to take, particularly since Greg's eyes kept cutting away. The soy fields muffled the noise from the crowds of theorists closing in, but Greg’s discomfort buzzed in the air.

"A reaction." Greg rubbed at the tip of his nose, gaze falling away again to the landscape around the edges of the circle.

"Tingles? Static? Nausea?"

"Hmm…" He swallowed the rest of his statement, his Adam's apple spasming.

"I'm sorry?" I stared at Jaime, lifting both brows in silent inquiry. He shook his head slightly, flicking his gaze back at the uncomfortable plantation owner.

"I got an erection." His voice stumbled over the rocky landscape of words. I swallowed back an inappropriate chuckle at his response.

Greg’s mortification at his confession had him fleeing the scene to deal with the trespassers, leaving me behind somewhat speechless.

"So, you called me out here for a hard-on?"

About Prime Evil

Prime Evil
Prime Evil
In her first full-length novel, Heather Long takes readers to the farm rich countryside of Northern Virginia as hedge witch Chance Monroe fights for her way of life when serial killer Randall Oakes returns from the dead. Chance must confront a troubled past, a supernatural adversary and a sizzling passion that’s lain dormant for years.

Nearly a decade ago, Randall Oakes left hedge witch Chance Monroe for dead. Now he’s back along with her ex-lover, Jack. The FBI wants Chance in protective custody, but Chance knows it won’t be enough to protect her from Oakes. Connected to the earth, Chance must rely on her supernatural senses and her own wits to survive this game of cat and mouse.

About Seven Souls a Leaping

Seven Souls A Leaping
Seven Souls a Leaping
At New England New Age (NENA) Investigations, no case is too weird. The paranormal detective agency relies on the familial talents of siblings Duncan and Samantha and their cousin Tara. While Duncan and Samantha tend to the fieldwork, Tara mans the office tapping sources in both the physical and spirit worlds.  Fate takes a hand when a killer named Jeffrey Wiles begins a death-dealing spree that puts the lives and loves of these investigators on the line.

Comment Now for a Chance to Win!

What supporting character from Prime Evil was your favorite?  And why? Inquiring minds want to know!

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