An excerpt from my paranormal/contemporary erotic-romance for Halloween, Like Magic.
Ian Hannigan was having the worst day of his life. A real estate prospect turned out to be a prank, his car has been stolen, and he’s stranded in the worst neighborhood he can imagine on Halloween night. If he believed in magic, he would swear he’d been cursed. Nothing could possibly make this day any worse or better… That is, nothing but Raven, a mysterious occult shop owner who not only claims to be a witch, but insists that she summoned him as the answer to her aching loneliness. Ian’s night just got a lot weirder. And his love life just got a lot more interesting.
He wasn’t sure how to respond, as they’d promised each other only that one night. Instead of speaking, he took her hand again and pressed a kiss to the tender skin of her wrist and then pulled her into his lap. He was there now and that would have to be enough. He sent whatever had brought him to her a silent word of thanks though it was inarticulate in his mind.
As if sensing his speechlessness, Raven merely smiled and looked at their entwined fingers. She turned his hand over in her own, as if noting the relative size and roughness of his palm in comparison with her own.
“Will I meet a tall, dark stranger?” he joked, looking into the lines in his hand.
“You have a long life,” she said. “Longer than you know – longer than before your birth, and after your life. You have an old soul.”
“The matron at one of my group homes used to say that,” he smiled. “But just because I was always a little bit tight-assed and not very happy as a child.”
“Why was that?”
Ian tilted his head in an effort to dismiss the stories of his youth, which weren’t incredibly pleasant, but also not very interesting. Before adulthood, his life had mostly consisted of boredom and waiting.
“My mother died when I was young. I never knew my father.” He shrugged. “Wasn’t a great deal to be happy about, really.”
“Now, though?” she said, looking back at the lines. “I think you’re satisfied in some ways, but not in others. You’re ambitious and you do well, but you’re occasionally unlucky especially with your love life. You’ve done a lot for yourself, though.”
Ian was increasingly uncomfortable with her inspection, feeling bare to her eyes.
“Enough about me,” he said lightly to cover up the quick way he yanked his hand from hers. “How about you?”
Raven smiled as if she knew why he stopped her, but was unruffled by his reluctance to tell her more. She produced her palm to him with a good natured chuckle.
“My life is an open book. Be my guest.”
“Oh no,” he said. “I don’t read palms.” She squealed as he grabbed her and started to plaster her neck and shoulders with kisses. “Ear lobes, maybe,” he said in a muffled voice as he took possession of her ear with his lips. “Ahh! You will indeed meet a tall, dark stranger,” he confirmed. “And you two will fuck like bunnies all... night... long...”
This story will be included in the paperback/ebundle anthology All I Want: The Anne Holly-Day Collection, releasing October 3, 2012.
We're seeking reviews and promo opportunities for Like Magic this October. If you're interested in helping spread the word for Halloween, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, and include a link to your site or blog. (18+, non-YA blogs/sites, only, please.)