Category Archives: Scene from a Picture

Jingle Bell Hop – What do Sexy Spaniards and Stolen Paintings have in common?

on December 8, 2011

UPTATE:  Eva P. and Michelle won the print copies of either Fated or Claimed.  Congrats!

Welcome to the Jingle Bell Hop!  If you’ve fallen off the bus, just click on the logo to the right and it’ll take you right back on.

Happy Holidays, everyone!  Read to the end for a chance to win more books!  So here’s a fun scene for you:

Andreas Gradin/

Sasha settled a hand against Diego’s broad chest.  “Do you see them?”

Slowly, with the casualness of a lover, he stroked her head.  His dark gaze stayed on the target.  “Yes.”

Her pretty new sundress hid the gun at his waist as well as the knife strapped to her thigh.  “Let’s hit them.”

“No.”  His hold tightened.  “If we do this, everything changes.”

For the love of pete.  Woman’s intuition whispered in her ear that everything had already changed.  The second she’d placed her hand in his when he’d met her at the airport yesterday.  “They stole the painting, Diego.  I didn’t fly half way across the world to walk away.”

“I told you what would happen if you returned to Spain.”  His voice lowered to a huskiness that had her thighs clenching together. 

She barely bit back a wince as the knife scratched her skin.  Five years ago, she’d left him.  And he’d let her.  “Now isn’t the time to discuss it.” 

His long, talented fingers threaded through her hair.  He jerked her head back, stepping into her, dark eyes flashing.  “Now is exactly the time to discuss it.”  His gaze dropped to her lips, making them tingle.  “You didn’t like my job.  You left.  My job is different now and…you’re back.”

“You were a thief,” she hissed.  As much as she’d loved him and understood his dismal background, she couldn’t live on the wrong side of the law.

“Yes.”  Heat cascaded off his strong body.  “And yet, the second you needed help, you called an ex-thief.”

Well, yeah.  Who else could catch the guys who’d stolen her painting?  Her heart fluttered.  “Ex-thief?”

He leaned in, his face above hers, only an inch separating them.  “I promised you I’d change.  I own half of Beneto Galleries now.  I bought in.”

She gasped.  Figured the ex-art thief would one day own a legitimate gallery.  “That’s fantastic.”

His smile appeared more deadly than charming.  A shiver wandered down her spine.  No fear, but definitely intrigue.  “Thank you.  In fact, I’ve stolen one painting only since the day you left.”

Well, why in the world— She gasped, pushing against him.  He didn’t move.  How could he?  “One painting?”  She turned her head, taking a good look at the ‘target.’  “Philippe?”

The older man turned, whipping a huge hat off his head and patting the box next to him.  “Ah, Senorita.  So good to see you again.  Thank you for allowing us to show your fine painting in the gallery.”  With a twinkle in his eye, he grabbed the box and sauntered away from the area of benches.

Fire flashed through her.  “You son of a—“

Diego’s mouth stopped her words.  Hot, sexy, so damn devastating, he kissed the anger right out of her.  Finally, she nearly sagged against him.

Framing her face, he flashed twin dimples.  “I’ve missed you.  The only way to get you here was…well.”

Her mind spinning, joy ripping through her, she could only shake her head.  Damn, she loved the man.  Always had.  “You stole my painting.”

“You stole my heart.” 

So, thanks for hopping the blogs this weekend!  In addition to the overall prizes, I’m giving away a signed copy of either FATED or CLAIMED (winner’s choice) to one commenter on my blog this weekend.  (Sometimes comments take a while to show up–don’t worry, yours will).  Comment about anything, but if you need a prompt:  So, what are you holiday plans?  Ever been to Spain?  Do you like any particular art?

Halloween Blog Hop: A stripper, a demon, and a serial killer walk into a cave…

on October 27, 2011

UPDATE:  The book winners are: Samantha Gail and Dark Reader.  Congrats!

Welcome to the Halloween blog hop where you could win a Kindle–or a bunch of other prizes!  Click on the banner to get back on the hop!  We used a scene generator and my characters are: a serial murderer, a demon, and a stripper.  My adjectives are: undead, driven, and hungry.  Finally, the scene takes place in: a cave.

He may be a demon, but Brodey had the body of a God.

Andrea struggled against her chains, her gaze on the demon who’d stolen her heart months ago. Sure, it was the same old story. Stripper fell in love with demon, they had some amazing times, he left to fulfill his job of taking evil souls out of the world. It probably happened every day.

The chains rattled against each other, set so securely into the hard rock of the cave walls. She was a strong, driven woman, and again tried again to spit out the gag, to yell at Brodey for walking into what was so obviously a trap. Walking? Hell. The demon had sauntered.

He lifted an eyebrow. Arrogance cut hard lines in his face, an arrogance not diminished one whit by the fact that he faced her, naked to the waist, chained to the opposite wall. His legs were occupied by squeezing the life out of the man writhing on the floor. “You’re positively spitting mad, darlin.”

Low and deep, that voice cut through her memories as certainly as it cut through her heart. The scents of raw earth and powerful male comingled in the small space. She shoved out the gag. “You stupid son of a bitch.”

His smile failed to quench or even reach the fire swirling in his dark eyes. Real fire. The guy was a demon, after all. “At the very least, you might say thank you.”

Fury ripped through her so quickly her head might as well blow off. “Thank you? For what? For walking into an obvious trap and condemning us both to death?”

“I heard Marcel had you…the undead bastard.” The fire in Brodey’s eyes wandered a red flush down his torso—now he was getting irritated. “As I’ve already taken out the rest of his crew, as I promised you I’d do, I’m here for the last serial murderer in that gang.” Brodey twisted his knees, snapping Marcel’s neck. The body dropped to the ground. One more serial murderer taken out of the world. “I’m also here…for you.”

“We’re tied up, and you just killed the only guy who can get us out of here.” Sure, Marcel had planned to torture and kill her slowly, so his being dead set all right with her. But she hadn’t wanted to die in chains.

Brodey shrugged, the movement rippling solid muscles through his chest. A chest she’d spent hours resting on so many months ago. Amusement lifted his upper lip. “I remember our time fondly as well.”

“Stay out of my head.” All demons could read minds, a fact she’d learned the hard way. Why the heck wasn’t he more concerned? If anything, the demon looked hungry. For her.

“I am hungry.” He’d said he’d return after taking them all out.

She hadn’t believed him.

“You should’ve believed me.” He growled low, and yanked one arm free. The chain swept out. Rocks sprayed. His other arm followed suit. He was free. Two steps forward and he stood before her. Tall, strong, and male.

Relief made her shoulders sag. “Excellent. Now get me free.”

His slow smile warmed her head to toes…and everywhere in between. “Not quite yet, darlin. Let’s, er, talk first.”

Thanks for dropping by my blog on the hop today!  If you need to get back on the blog hop, here’s the link:  HALLOWEEN BLOG HOP.  Besides giving away a copy of CLAIMED on the big hop, I’m giving away a copy from my blog here to one commenter.  So…do you have any halloween plans?

Labor Day Blog Hop–Woman on the Run

on September 3, 2011

UPDATE:  The winners from my individual blog are:  ARC of Claimed = Ragan Cornell.  Signed copies of Fated = Becky Ward and Christine Hundelt Hirth.  CONGRATS!

The winner from the overall blog hop is:  Laura Dunks

Hello and welcome to the Labor Day Blog Hop!  I thought I’d write a scene from a picture.  Besides the prizes I’m giving away on the entire hop, I’ll give away two signed copies of FATED and one signed ARC of CLAIMED to randomly chosen commenters on my blog.  Comment about anything.  Tell me if you liked the scene, or what you’re doing for Labor Day, or just say hi.  🙂  You have until late on Sept. 5th to enter.  If you’ve fallen off the blog, just click on the “Hard at Work” blog hop photo to jump back on. 

ALSO:  The Darker Temptations scavenger hunt is still going on for the rest of the day-click on the link for directions to win great prizes!

WOMAN on the RUN:

It was ironic he’d caught her on Labor Day. A national holiday most people took as a day
of rest.  Ronan never rested.  Lucy had known he’d find her…it was just a matter of time.

Time was up.

In fact, time pretty much stopped.  The lantern’s golden glow dimmed to a light haze.  Music receded.  Even the boisterous college guys at the bar seemed to quiet.

The second he grabbed her hands, the world narrowed to him.  Even though it was futile, she tried to yank  back.  “Let go or I’ll scream.” 

He smiled, his gaze dropping to her mouth.  “You know I like it when you scream.”

Jackass.  Heat flushed through her as memories clouded her mind.  Ronan, in the shower, steam and sex.  The man kissed like a god.  And he just got better from that point.  “I’m fairly sure I don’t remember.”  Yeah, right.

The scent of man washed over her as he stepped even closer, heating her entire front.  His grip tightened and raised her skirt. “Maybe I should remind you.”

Low, gravelly, his voice slammed need into her abdomen.  “Leave me be, Ronan.”

“You told me to hunt you.  Consider yourself caught.”

She stiffened.  “I did not.  I never said to hunt me.” 

His eyes warmed in equal parts amusement and warning.  “You said it was either the jewels or you…that I could only pursue one path.  Here I am.”

Her breath caught in her throat.  The man chased treasure like a dragon…he was made for the quest.  When the information on the rare yellow diamonds came in, she’d known he’d head straight for the last known location and forget to come home.  So she’d emailed him her goodbye.  Or her challenge, depending how one choose to look at the situation.  “You were overseas.”

“Yes.  It took me a week to catch your trail.” 

“You chose me?”  Confusion had her clearing her throat.  She’d known he’d eventually seek her…after he found the diamonds.  “I mean, first?”

“Of course.”  One dark eyebrow rose.  “You’re everything.  I believe I’ve been more than clear on that point.”

Romantic words, yet he sounded seriously pissed.  “Yeah.  Until you left me behind last time to go searching.”  For five months, they’d had to text and email.  They were supposed to treasure hunt together.

“The last quest was for the government and had nothing to do with treasure.  It was blood, death, and futility.”  His gaze hardened to a look she’d never seen before.  “You don’t know me very well if you thought I’d put you in that situation.”

She did understand.  His protectiveness had never bothered her before.  But five months was a long time.  “So.  What now?”

“Well…now I was thinking about how a yellow diamond would make a perfect jewel for an engagement ring.  If we can find one, that is.  What do you think?”

The world finally stopped tilting.  Her world finally calmed.  She smiled.  “So, is that a proposal?”

His grin shoved the shadows out of his blue eyes.  “Yes.  From now on, all hunting is done together.  I promise.  What do you say?”

Warmth and love settled in her solar plexus.  The man was just too much.  She leaned up to brush his lips with hers.  “Well, now.  It turns out I have a lead on the diamonds and am supposed to meet a source in an hour.  As to the proposal…I accept.”

So, leave a comment below for more chances to win.  Now, if you haven’t commented on my blog before, it takes awhile for a new comment to show up.  So no worries…I’ll get it in time.  Also, I may be camping without internet service, so I won’t be able to respond to comments until next week.  But thanks so much for stopping by!  🙂