July 14, 2013

It's a Wicked Scavenger Hunt!

Welcome to 
Close Encounters of the Wicked Kind
Scavenger Hunt!

Members of the exclusive Wicked Women have gathered ‘round to bring forth a most Wickedly good time.

I’ll be giving away an ebook copy of my novella ~ Portals of Oz ~ to one lucky commenter with email. Grand prize is via Rafflecopter.

Please remember:  Enter your Scavenger Hunt answer in the rafflecopter…not in comments.  I'll have to delete everyone who comments with the answer.

Book 2 of The Centaurs series

Smashwords:  http://is.gd/1VdvGf

Meet Pennelope:

In my latest novel release (oooh, love that word!), I have a certain Troll who makes life agonizingly rough for everyone. She’s hard to hate—you want to love her—but her webs of deception weave tragic results.


From his vantage point on the hillside above the family nest, Eli propped a heel behind him and leaned back. The rock digging into his butt was hard and unforgiving; it matched the disposition of the older female Troll beside him.

Her slender white neck curved as she used the glowing cherry of her herbal smoke to draw tracers in the dark around the Centaur guard in the distance. “Who’s that with Kempor Aleksander?”

“My sister, Ella.”

“Why is she with him?”

“Good question.” Eli stared with gritted teeth through the cover of trees at the embracing couple. “She’s making a huge mistake.”

“How long have they been dating?” Elegant fingers brought the cigarette to her lips, and she pulled a slow drag. Multiple bracelets slid down her arm and jangled softly together.

“I think they just met. Ella opened the new speed-dating service, and the Kempor was in it tonight—like he of all mythics would need it.”

“Hmm, interesting.” Smoke blew in an easy stream from her pursed lips, catching the cool night breeze that, in turn, drifted across his face.

Protected under the trees from the drizzle, they watched the playboy hit on his sister. Ella didn’t seem to mind.

Upwind, the entwined couple had no idea their actions were observed.

“Is it true he avoids relationships like he would the trots?” Eli asked.

Two fingers held the hand rolled cigarette, as her lips tightened around it. She drew on the end, let the smoke linger in her mouth a moment, then inhaled. Air currents caressed the cigarette’s tip and caused the ember to glow between drags. “In all the years I’ve known him, he only had one serious affair. And that one dumped him for something better.”

Eli pushed away from the boulder, away from scents of burning clove, and peered down at his family’s rock. His mother stood out front, shouting for Ella. Gods, how embarrassing. Glancing up the opposite hillside, he saw Kempor Aleksander drop his cupped hands from Ella’s face.

Soft footsteps drew next to Eli. His companion’s fingernails lightly scratched his back, bangles dancing musically. “Don’t worry about her. If there’s one thing I know, Aleksander won’t stick around for long.” The hair at his collar received the same massage treatment. “Come over here, Eli. I want to talk business before I leave.”

He followed his contact back to the rock and watched her fluff out the skirt beneath a belt that defined her small waist. He crossed his arms, widened his stance, then waited for her to continue.

“There’s chatter in Boronda of rebel movement. Heard any of it?”

“The Minotaur I befriended hinted a few things tonight. He would’ve said more if things hadn’t gone south.”

Bracelets sliding in a musical clatter, she clamped the short smoke between her lips. Her hands became busy, pulling a small silver case from the voluminous folds of her skirt, and she spoke around the cigarette, “What happened?”

“Phranq took an interest in Ella at the café. When we left, he bull-handled her and the Kempor took exception to that. We had to leave before they got into it.”


Her pointed Troll ears twitched with the sounds of the night. Nobody knew how old his contact was, but Eli guessed at least three centuries. If she were older than that, she held her age well.

He waited while she removed a fresh cigarette.

She lit the end with the red tip of the old, and tossed the used butt into a puddle. Taking a drag, she turned to him and asked, “Carryyn couldn’t distract Alek?”

“No. He didn’t want anything to do with her.” Hell, Eli couldn’t blame the man. Even hard up, few would get it on with a Minotaur—not to say he hadn’t before.

Movement in the shadows across the stream caught his sharp Troll eyes. The Kempor watched Ella make her way down the foot trail until she dissolved beneath their granite rock. What in the hell did she have in those bags she carried everywhere?

Between the trees in the dim moonlight, the guard weaved his way along the trail, headed toward the palace. His huge muscular torso twisted between the towering elms, making room for the breadth of his shoulders to pass, before his hind end disappeared from view.

Standing next to Eli, his underground contact stared at the black space where the Kempor had stood moments before. The cigarette between her fingers, seemingly forgotten, the dangling ash long. Wisps of reddish hair framed her oval face. Her inscrutable expression was unnerving.

Eli touched her shoulder. “Are you alright?”

A melancholy frown flitted across her features. Then, she smiled, smoothly betraying nothing of her inner thoughts. “I’ll meet you again, in two days at the regular appointed time.”

He nodded and leaned back on the rock. “May I have your name? Something to call you by?”

She lifted her hand to tousle her damp curls, and another flutter of bouncing bracelets erupted. “Yes, now that I know you’re trustworthy. Call me…Pennelope.”

“Be careful out there, Pennelope.”

She rewarded him with a slow, secret smile. One, he wouldn’t claim to understand.

“I always am.”


Click HERE for the listing of other Wicked Women and scavenge their blog posts as well! Good luck in the contest, and thank you for visiting my mythic world.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Um I'm having a hard time finding the question for this post, is it just me?

  2. Nope, not just you. It's not there.

  3. Great excerpt! Thanks for sharing and for the giveaway. I have added this series to my TBR.

  4. The question is right above the rafflecopter :) Thank you for participating in this fun scavenger hunt. The Centaurs looks like a fun series.

  5. The excerpt makes me wonder are all the characters fae or are some human would like to find out by reading your book


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