This is going to be really exciting week. Not only do I have the Pro-Blitz Tour going on to promote the new episode of Shadow Stalker, but it’s pre-order week as well. Starting now you can pre-order your copy of Shadow Stalker: The Delohi-Saqu’s Fate (Epsiode 2) on Smashwords and Kindle. Best of all, everyone who is following the blog tour gets 25% off on their purchase. The coupon code is: KL39M (valid on Smashwords only). Keep in mind that the coupon expires after 25 October 2014, so you will want to make your purchase before then.
Check out the trailer below, then read on for information on the Contest and Tour Details, including the ebook signing that I will be doing next Saturday after the release:
I will be running a contest throughout the week. The winner will receive every episode of Shadow Stalker that I write free. At this point, I plan to run the series for about 2 or 3 years, so that’s between 24 and 36 episodes that you will get for free. There are three ways you can enter and each one gives you a certain amount of entry points. The more entry points you receive, the more chances you have to win. So head over to the Contest Pagefor more info.
So on to the tour! Below is a list of all the contributors and what they will be contributing.
Throughout the week you can read regular updates and posts on these social media sites. Follow the #SStalkerTour hashtag:
We’ve reached the final part of my leg of the Hands of Evil blog tour. Just in case you’ve missed them, check out part 1 and learn more about Melissa and her new novel, and part 2 to read an excerpt. Also if you haven’t yet, don’t forget to read Interrupted Part 1.
Interrupted Part 2
Charlie was on his way home after a long, exhausting day, when he got the call from JJ. He knew it couldn’t be good. He’d spent hours with Peter Green, sifting through his past to find an explanation for the gruesome gift someone had left on his property. They already had several leads and, thanks to Bobby’s contacts, they had a name.
“We have a situation,” JJ said before he’d uttered a word.
Charlie sighed and pulled his Vauxhall to the side of the road. “Hello to you too.”
“Peter’s not answering his phone and he never misses poker night,” JJ said, sounding tense. “I’m on my way over, and wanted to give you a heads up.”
“Maybe he got lucky. How do you know he’s not blowing you off?” Even as he said it Charlie knew the answer. After what had happened that morning, Peter would keep his friends close. “Okay, fine. I’m on my way.”
He pulled onto the road again with a sigh. It didn’t look like he’d be getting home anytime soon.
JJ was waiting for him when he pulled up to the gates of Peter Green’s property.
“Thanks for coming, Charlie,” he said. “You might want to leave your car and follow on foot.”
“You’ve had eyes on Peter I take it,” Charlie said, glancing at the scope in his hand.
“Yes and unless you’re right about the lucky part, he’s in trouble.” He shrugged at Charlie’s narrow-eyed stare. “He’s tied to the bed, and looks pretty out of it.”
“Shit,” Charlie muttered, pulling the phone from his pocket. “Any more surprises?”
“He’s not alone.”
“Yvonne Kennedy?” Charlie asked, dialing Bobby’s number.
“What makes you think I know who it is?” JJ said, a picture of innocence.
When Bobby answered on the fourth ring he turned without answering JJ, and brought his partner up to speed.
He had absolutely no doubt JJ had worked through the problem and arrived at the same conclusions. He’d been the one to find the female footprints at the scene, caught the breach in the property fence, and though he hadn’t gone anywhere near the crime scene, he was as thorough as they came.
Not that Charlie was complaining. If it hadn’t been for Bobby’s contacts they would have been a step behind, especially given the politics involved. Thankfully since neither the victim nor their suspect currently served, they didn’t need to involve the Ministry of Defence.
He’d spent most of the day delving into Peter’s background. He already knew about the tours in Afghanistan and that he’d left the service because he no longer trusted all the men he served with. It was the worst kind of betrayal, discovering those who had your back were as dangerous as those you were fighting against.
Stuart Warburton, the murder victim, had killed two civilians during Peter’s final tour. A woman and an eight year old child. None of the team would come forward and, for Peter, it had been the last straw.
Yvonne Kennedy had served as a medic with the team and had been medically discharged three years earlier. She’d had a psychotic break, and had been treated for post-traumatic stress disorder. It hadn’t taken Bobby long to discover that the problems began right after the event which triggered Peter’s departure from the military.
“Okay,” he said to JJ, shoving his phone into his pocket. “Let’s go take a look.”
The moment the shutters came down in JJ’s expression, alarm bells started ringing. “That’s all we can do at this point,” he said, understanding it wouldn’t sit well on his friend’s shoulders.
“I can’t promise to stand by and do nothing if Pete’s life is in danger. You can’t ask me to do that, Charlie.”
Charlie hesitated for only a second. “Let’s assess the situation and take it from there.”
On a brief nod, JJ turned and stepped towards the copse of trees.
The moment they reached the designated vantage point, Charlie could see it didn’t look good for Peter. Yvonne was waving her gun around and becoming more agitated by the second. Clearly, in his drug induced state, Peter had failed to see the signs, or he didn’t care.
JJ disappeared before Charlie had the chance to cool his jets. He saw him weaving in and out of the tree line and cursed the air blue.
Since he didn’t have a choice, he followed JJ and prayed his team weren’t far behind. When he spotted a pistol in JJ’s hand he almost groaned. ‘Once a commando,’ he murmured to himself, grateful JJ had a permit to wave the thing around.
He pushed forward, easing through the door JJ had left afar. His eyes darted along the hallway, squinting against the dull light. Peter’s room was up the stairs towards the back of the house. Charlie glanced up and thought he saw movement. He waited a beat or two and then climbed swiftly, eyes open and alert.
At the top of the stairs he crept along the hall. He could hear voices now and for a moment he listened to the ramblings of a woman on the edge. It was clear Yvonne had some kind of obsession with Peter, Charlie could hear it in her voice. She saw herself as the punisher, though he wasn’t entirely sure where Peter fit into her fantasy. He didn’t have long to ponder on it because all hell broke loose.
He moved at the first thud, calling out his name and rank as he rushed towards Peter’s bedroom. JJ walked out a moment before he reached it, dragging a slightly subdued Yvonne Kennedy and practically threw her at him. “Peter…” he said and disappeared back into the room.
Since his suspect was still in one piece and, by the sounds below him, Bobby had arrived, he saved his breath and led Yvonne back towards the stairs.
Well I hoped you enjoyed this leg of the blog tour! I’m so excited to have been a part of it, and I wish Melissa all the best with her new novel. I’m looking forward to reading it myself! Tomorrow is the last day of the tour. Kathryn Jenkins will be sharing another of Melissa’s short stories, Choked, at Dragon Knight Chronicles Reader’s Corner. And then Melissa will be announcing the winner of her contest on her blog.
Welcome to Part 2 of my leg of the Hands of Evil blog tour! If you haven’t already, you may want to check out Part 1 to learn more about Melissa and her new novel. In this post I’ll be sharing an excerpt from the book, then in Part 3 you’ll be able to read Interrupted Part 2, a short story written by Melissa. You can read part 1 of Interruptedhere.
An Excerpt of Hands of Evil by Melissa Barker-Simpson
Rueben Sinclair blended into the shadows like a chameleon; so skilled at adapting to his environment he was constantly overlooked. It was a handy trick, one he’d acquired as a child.
His mother was a dispassionate woman prone to violent outbursts. Even at the age of five his instincts were developed and, like an internal alarm, they told him when to run and when to hide. Out of sight wasn’t exactly out of mind, but by the time he resurfaced the worst was usually over.
She was something of a master too, Bridget Sinclair; a multifaceted woman who saved her best side for strangers. At home she liked to use her fists, and like any prized fighter she protected her weapons of choice.
He could see her now, snapping her gloves into place with a rare smile. She’d enjoyed it. So much in fact, that their game of hide and seek became a battle of wills; the loser paid the price.
When his brother was old enough to play target to her rage, Rueben sacrificed his best hiding places to protect him. Those were the worst days, being punished enough for two.
But that didn’t matter. Not now she’d lost her power and could never hurt him again.
He looked down at his own hands and imagined them wrapped around her throat. It focused him, reminded him of why he was there and that his wait would soon be over.
He was going to kill again.
That had made him sick to his stomach, and he’d almost lost his nerve. But afterwards, much later when he’d replayed it in his head, he’d felt a surge of power so strong it both shocked and excited him.
He could feel that excitement now, and he knew he had to curb it. This wasn’t about pleasure, it was about revenge. Later he could remember. But not yet. Not when he had a job to do.
She was close, his next victim. So close he could practically reach out and touch her. It took discipline to mark his time, to wait for the exact moment.
Until then he was content to watch her, safe in the knowledge that, like his first, she wouldn’t see him coming until it was too late.
Sharon’s chill had nothing to do with the cold night air. It was a primal instinct that crept up her spine and urged her to keep moving.
Her steps were hurried now, and her breathing just a little laboured. The panic spread with every passing shadow, every unfamiliar sound, until she was half crazy with it.
The irony was she’d put herself in this position. It was almost 10pm, and she was walking the streets alone, on the wrong side of town.
Not that she had anything waiting for her at home, unless you counted a pile of dirty dishes and a half-finished bottle of wine.
It hadn’t always been that way. Once there’d been someone to ask about her day, someone who’d handed her a coffee as she’d shrugged out of her coat. Someone who’d cared.
The thought depressed her, and before that moment, she’d never felt so alone, and yet sure she wasn’t at the same time.
In the harsh light of reality, her eyes blurred with unexpected tears.
Ahead of her, the car she’d spent all her savings on was just another reminder of her fate. Sat alone on the deserted street, it was as out of place as she felt. A symbol of every bad choice she’d made.
Even the simple things, like accepting the assignment at the last minute, or failing to plan ahead. They all told the same tale.
She didn’t want to think about the half-hour she’d wasted at the college. If she’d been able to say no to a pretty face she wouldn’t be in this mess. She wouldn’t be flinching at the slightest sound, like the whine of an engine pulling onto the street.
She turned and was momentarily blinded by the glare of headlights. Her heart stuttered in her chest when the car pulled over to the curb. It took all of her strength not to run.
“Sharon, wait, it’s Martin Kennedy.”
Her relief came out on a rush of breath. It was only one of the lecturers. “Hi, Martin. Did you need something?”
“I had no idea you were parked all the way out here. I would have offered you a lift.”
Her smile widened at his concern. “It’s okay, thanks. That’s my car up there,” she indicated with her head. “I’ll be fine.”
She watched him hesitate, and thought for a moment he was going to insist on seeing her to her car.
“Good night, then,” he said at last, and she felt the disappointment like a slap.
The moment he pulled away from the curb, she wanted to call him back. It was like watching her last chance drive away. Her last chance at what she wasn’t certain, but it got her moving.
She was at her car by the time his lights had faded into the distance, and didn’t know whether to hug it or cower inside it.
Her fingers shook a little as she rooted inside her bag for the key. Yet another example of her foolishness; they should have been in her hand. If they had been, maybe she’d have stood a chance.
Rueben had a difficult time controlling his rage. He’d almost lost his prize to a Good Samaritan. He’d been too caught up in his fantasies; too busy watching her.
Still, all was not lost. When she’d stuck her head in the oversized handbag he made his move; closing in on her quickly and efficiently.
It would have been perfect, if he hadn’t allowed the excitement to win out over caution. He pulled the cord a little too tightly and she slammed into his chest, sagging against him like a rag doll.
Her cry of surprise echoed along the empty street and fed his thrill for the game. But he wasn’t stupid. She’d almost slipped through his fingers once.
He couldn’t afford a long, drawn out death dance. His luck had been used up. So he yanked the cord and took what he could.
Sharon tried to pry her fingers underneath the rope, but it was useless. It was too tight. She couldn’t breathe; she couldn’t even call for help.
Her killer loomed behind her, a shadow reflected through the car door. She couldn’t see his features. It was too dark. And when her vision began to waver, the silhouette became a monster. A monster with heavily muscled arms and hands the size of small shovels.
Then it all began to fade as the pain wiped every thought from her head. Every thought but one. She was going to die.
I’m so excited to be participating in Melissa’s blog tour and helping her kick start the release of her new book,Hands of Evil. If you haven’t already, you might want to catch the tour from the beginning. There is a rundown of all the stops over at Melissa’s blog. There’s a lot of great stuff like a review of her book, interviews and short stories that you really won’t want to miss.
I’ve got a lot of info to share with you, so I decided to do this in three parts. In part 1 I’m going to be sharing a little about Melissa and Hands of Evil, in part 2 I’ll be sharing an excerpt of her new book, and in part three I’ll be sharing part 2 of her short story Interrupted. You can read part 1 of Interrupted at S.R. Carrillo’s blog Permashift.
I’ve been writing since, well…since I was knee-high to a grasshopper. I often look back on those earlier stories, and apart from laughing at the heavy-handed drama, or cringing at my inexperience, I am reminded that I have always lived in other worlds.
My first novel was published in 2008, and I love nothing more than working on a new project. The voices inside my head invariably pull me in different directions, so although I try to work on one thing at a time, those who know me would tell you it doesn’t always work!
I have a full-time job which, though does not involve writing per se, incorporates my love of language. As a British Sign Language Interpreter, I get to translate information between two languages which is (mostly) fun.
I have two beautiful daughters who bring me great joy. They also keep me grounded, because otherwise I would have my head in the clouds permanently!
Jonathan Jukes is accustomed to working alongside the police within his role as close protection officer at Morgan and Fairchild. But when Detective Sergeant Charles Macavoy requests the team’s help, JJ finds it’s his toughest case yet.
A serial killer, whose calling card is to remove the hands of his victims, is targeting interpreters. When lines begin to blur and JJ’s past comes back to haunt him, he soon discovers the biggest threat comes from a woman who stands at the centre of it all.
Click the link above to get your copy of Hands of Evil today or enter her contest below for your chance of winning an autographed copy!