I decided to do something different. Rather than sampling one book, I'm posting short samples from four books. Let's kick it off with my latest release:
(Sage trying to apologize)
"Look Sarah, I think we should start fresh. I want you to enjoy your stay here and anything I can do to help with your research, just let me know. As for what happened at Java Junction, I'm truly sorry. I was just playing the game your boss started. If I'd known it would upset you, I would have kept my foot out of my mouth. So, like I said earlier, can we call a truce?"
Sage watched Sarah sip her coffee and then cradle the cup in her hands. "I'd like to ask you something, Mr. Tanner."
Sage held her gaze. "Shoot."
"Did you actually think I would be flattered by your attention?"
"I didn't think about it one way or the other. Like I said, I was playing along with the charade."
"Perhaps it was a game to you, but I saw it as demeaning and cruel."
Sage bit down on his back teeth. The woman was impossible. What did she want him to do, grovel on the floor? Inhaling to keep himself from saying something that would only antagonize the situation, he said, "What's done is done. Will you accept my apology, or at least call a truce so you can enjoy your stay here?"
She sipped her coffee again, looked down into the cup as if seeking an answer there, and then back at him. "Okay, I'll call a truce and think about accepting your apology."
Sage just about lost it. Holding his temper at bay, he inclined his head and sipped his own coffee, staring at her over the edge of the cup.
Roth: Protector: Shapeling Trilogy Book One:
"Tahnoon Kahlifa, you are going to be shocked by what I reveal. But please, listen until the end."
Tahnoon acknowledged the request with a slight nod of his head.
"Many years ago I received an assignment. I was directed by my elders to make sure a young man arrived at his own wedding. The young man’s parents had arranged for him to marry a girl he had met only once as a teenager. He had not been impressed by her and did not want to marry her. The elders who gave me my assignment believed it was very important, however, that the young man and the young woman marry. It would maintain peace between their tribes. The young man was destined to become leader of his clan, and my elders believed he would gain much wisdom from his wife."
Tahnoon watched Roth’s every movement, a puzzled expression on his face.
"That young man, Tahnoon, was you."
Tahnoon said, "Impossible! You were not even born when I married."
"That is where you are wrong. May I continue?"
Tahnoon inclined his head again, his expression showing more puzzlement than before.
"Do you remember trying to turn your camel away from the path it was on, but the camel would not turn, no matter how much you switched or kicked or pulled the reins. After many attempts, you came to believe that Allah had destined your marriage, and you accepted it."
Tahnoon jumped up and said, "How can you know that?"
"Because, my friend, I was that camel."
Fawn: Master: Shapeling Trilogy Book Two:
(Fawn as a feral horse encountering Wade)
Fawn spotted the herd of feral horses. She searched the area for cowboys and seeing none, landed behind the cover of a large boulder. Shifting into the white mare, she lunged past the boulder and approached the herd. Her appearance did little to disturb the grazing horses and she mingled among them, slowly chomping her way to the black stallion. When she came within a few feet, he snorted and his ears pricked. However, it was not she who had caused his alert stance. Looking in the direction of an approaching rider, she was relieved to see Wade. He widely circled the feral horses, coming up behind and driving them forward. She ran with the herd, enjoying the thrill of the forced run. Wade herded them inland and halted Misty when they reached safer pastures. Fawn stopped when Wade did. Even though her mind urged her to continue with the herd, her emotions did not listen. She waited for Wade's approach. He walked Misty Morning toward her.
"Well, I'll be damn. So you're the seventh horse. I don't know how you do it, but your tracks appear and disappear like a magician's trick. You're a beauty. How close are you going to let me get?" He stopped at twenty feet and hesitated only a minute before sliding off his horse. Slowly advancing, he left Misty to graze. He walked to within ten feet.
"Shit, I can't believe you're letting me get this close. You're not going to rear up and trample me are you?"
Fawn snorted and shook her mane. He remained at ten feet. They stared at each other. She approached him. The shocked look on his face made her heart grin. When she stood directly in front of him, he hesitantly stretched his gloved hand to her neck. His touch sent shivers through her and he honed in on it.
"You like me, don't you?"
Fawn touched her snout to his forehead.
Davide: Prince: Shapeling Trilogy Book Three:
(Davide's contemplation while watching his parents soar as eagles)
Davide stood and walked to the railing. Watching his parents soaring antics, he asked himself a question. What about you, Davide? Is your happiness complete? The answer to that question was a no-brainer. No. He sucked in the sweet smell of spring, and sighed. All his life he had been told of the prophesy surrounding his birth; how his parents had met and how the son of their love was destined to become the Great Prince.
"What a crock," Davide whispered into the breeze. A Shapeling Prince unable to shift. Long ago, he had determined the universe had played a dirty trick on him. Since babyhood, his parents had trained him in the art of shapeling focus, to no avail.
He shook his head. His mother was only half shapeling and she had attained the ability to shift into at least one creature. His twelve year old sister was making great progress, and here he was a three-quarter shapeling who had never even come close to shifting. Even with his inability to shift, however, his parents had never waivered in their belief that he was the fulfillment of prophesy; that he was the Great Prince spoken of by sages.
Disgusted, Davide turned from the balcony and the midnight flight of his parents.