Black Friday is here and we’re discussing the season with E.S. Moore’s Jonathan and Nathan from Blessed By A Demon’s Mark.
In a job like this, there’s no retirement plan.
Kat Redding’s life is dangerous enough when she’s hunting the rogue vampires who prey on Pureblood humans. But now that Kat is thinking of getting out of the killing business, she’s faced with a slew of new problems. Like the demon Beligral, who offers help at an escalating cost, and the werewolf cult with whom she’s entwined professionally and personally. And then there’s Countess Baset—the terrifying vampire who wants Kat to become her personal assassin.
It’s no wonder that Kat has been seeking refuge in the mysterious town known as Delai, a place where she can shed her Lady Death persona and live a life that’s as close to normal as she’s ever known. But even in this haven, something feels askew. Delai is a little too serene. And the more she discovers, the more Kat realizes that the only choice left to her is not whether to do battle, but which side she’ll risk her life to defend…
Make sure you stick around to the end. We’ll be giving away a copy of Blessed By A Demon’s Mark.
A Little Shopping Amongst Weres
I heaved a sigh. “There’s nothing to worry about. We’ll head in, get what we need, and get out before anyone suspects us of not being…normal.”
Nathan’s glower deepened, but he didn’t argue any longer. He stalked past me, making sure I knew how unhappy he was about the situation.
Always so protective.
Ever since I took over the Den, Nathan spent most of his time making sure I was safe. It was nice having someone watching my back, but sometimes, he injected himself into my business a little too much.
Like with Kat.
We approached the doors to the massive structure ahead. Two werewolves stood on either side of the doors, looking uncomfortable in the sunlight. They sniffed and narrowed their eyes as Nathan and I entered. It was pretty likely they’d sniffed out our true nature and would have someone watch us while we shopped.
And yes, that’s exactly what we were doing; shopping.
This was my first Christmas as Denmaster of the Luna Cult and I wanted to see if I could find a few gifts for some of the Cultists. I might appear to have a secure hold on the Den, but a little gift giving never could hurt.
“You’ve got to be kidding me.”
Nathan stopped just inside the mall entrance. Bodies packed seemingly every available space. Warm bodies.
They milled about, seemingly oblivious to the fact that they were in a vampire controlled mall. Sure, Count Mephisto himself wouldn’t come strolling in, but vampires weren’t the only thing that went bump in the night. Werewolves, unlike their blood relatives, could be out during the day, though we often preferred the night.
“Let’s go,” I said, attempting to take the lead. Nathan growled in displeasure and moved in front of me again. I smiled at his back.
The noise of the mall was almost unbearable to my sensitive ears. People were yelling at each other, screaming in some cases, over packages of socks, toys, and other trivial items. Sales banners hung in every store. It was chaos.
It was Black Friday.
“I don’t like this,” Nathan said again.
I motioned toward a nearby bookstore and we headed inside the packed room. While most members of the Luna Cult gave up many of their possessions when they joined, many of them still liked to read. Just because they worshipped werewolves, didn’t mean they were illiterate fools. Books were a good way to escape when things were at their worst, and I had to admit, things had been pretty bad lately.
“We should go somewhere else,” Nathan said, looking around distrustfully. “There are other shops in which you could find what you want. You could come back another day.”
“You didn’t have to come,” I said, scanning a nearby shelf. Of course I could come back another day, but there was something about the press of the crowds that was exhilarating.
Nathan huffed, but stopped complaining…for the moment at least.
I reached for a book, thinking one of my Cult weres, Jeremy Lincoln, would like it. Just as my fingers brushed the spine, a woman who looked as if she’d just wrestled with a wolverine elbowed me in the ribs and snatched it from my fingertips.
A deep growl beside me told me that it was time to go.
I spun and grabbed Nathan by the arm. His eyes were a feral yellow and his hair and face had become a tad bit bushier. He was still in control, but barely.
“Let’s go,” I said. “There’s nothing in here I want.”
Nathan was breathing hard, fighting to control his beast. He’d been so uptight lately, it was a wonder he was able to hold on at all.
“Nathan,” I said, warning clear in my voice.
He glanced at me and the yellow bled away.
We left the bookstore and he immediately made for the exit.
“Where are you going?” I asked, stopping.
He glanced back, frowned, and then heaved yet another big sigh. “You can’t be serious.”
“I haven’t finished my shopping yet.”
He grumbled something I won’t repeat and we continued on.
I dragged Nathan through a few other stores, hoping in vain he would calm down. I’d hoped getting out and doing something trivial would put him at ease, but it appeared it had done just the opposite.
Finally, I took him into the store that was my main reason for coming. I wasn’t sure why I bothered since I hadn’t seen the person the gift was for in quite a while now. I had a feeling that she’d be coming around again someday and I wanted to be ready when she did.
I stopped just inside the store and scanned the racks of long leather coats until I found what I was looking for.
“Perfect,” I said, picking up a coat that looked to be Kat’s size. It was the last on the rack.
I started for the counter when someone stepped in front of me.
The man stood a good six and a half feet tall and he had a muscular build. Tattoos ran up and down his arms and climbed his neck. He was wearing motorcycle pants and boots that heavily reminded me of Kat. His Harley T was missing the sleeves.
“I don’t believe it would fit you,” I said, glancing at the coat in my hand.
The man sneered. “It’s not for me. It’s for my girl.”
I shrugged. “I’m sure there are more back there for you.”
“Not of her size.”
Nathan growled and I decided it was time to get this over with. I started to walk past the big man, figuring he’d get the point. He wasn’t much bigger than Nathan and since there was two of us, it would be stupid to do anything.
He obviously wasn’t very bright.
The man grabbed me by the arm. His grip was firm and strong, but it was no match for a werewolf.
I jerked my arm free. “You shouldn’t have done that.”
Nathan was on him in an instant. The two men crashed into a rack of leather coats, knocking it over. There were snarls and I wasn’t quite sure who they were coming from. The man was a Pureblood, I was sure, but he looked as if he was used to fighting.
Still, a human was no match for an angry were. Nathan had the man’s arms pinned to the floor in seconds and was leaning over him, snout slowly extending.
“Don’t kill him,” I said glancing around. A tall man slipped from the store and took off running, more than likely to get security.
Nathan growled and snapped his teeth once, inches from the man’s nose before leaping to his feet. His features bled back to normal and he walked over to me.
“This was a good idea,” he said with a wide grin. He rolled his neck and it popped a few times. He looked relaxed. “Now, let’s go pay for your coat.”
Meet E.S. Moore!
From childhood, E.S. Moore wanted to be a writer, but stopped before leaving high school. He went to Ohio University as a Telecommunications major, but found he enjoyed the screenwriting classes more than anything. A few years later, he was back, attempting to write. In January 2012, his first novel was released. To Walk the Night begins the Kat Redding series, which is a dark urban fantasy where vampires and werewolves control the night. The third book in the series, Blessed by a Demon’s Mark, will be released in January, 2013. He also has written a YA horror novel, Little David Lost, that will be released as an e-book special in late 2012.
E.S. Moore currently resides in Ohio with his wife and son. When he isn’t writing, he can usually be found reading or gaming. He is represented by Jim McCarthy of Dystel & Goderich Literary Management.
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Thank you E.S. Moore for taking part in Literary Escapism’s Black Friday!
E.S. Moore is giving away a copy of Blessed By A Demon’s Mark. To enter, all you have to do is answer this one question: What other gift could Jonathan have gotten for Kat? Remember, you must answer the question in order to be entered.
Even though I’m not giving the additional entries any more, you can still help support the author by sharing their article, and this contest, on your blog, Twitter, Facebook, or anywhere you can. After all, the more people who are aware of this fabulous author ensures we get more fabulous stories.
The winner must post a review of the novel someplace. Whether it is on their own blog, Amazon, GoodReads, LibraryThing or wherever, it doesn’t matter. Just help get the word out.
All Black Friday contests will remain open until December 31st at which time I’ll determine the winner with help from the snazzy new plug-in I have. Have you checked out the other Black Friday contests yet? Check out the Master List to see all the Black Friday giveaways
I have not been contacting winners, so you will need to check back to see if you’ve won.