So, this hasn't happened for a while (that is, a new release not associated with episodes of Cambion) but I have one! It's a story called 24 Hours, part of the anthology Legal Briefs that Storm Moon Press is releasing today. The theme is the law, and the proceeds from this antho go to benefit Lambda Legal.
Lambda Legal is: a national organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV through impact litigation, education and public policy work. You can find out more about the organization at their website: http://www.lambdalegal.org/
This is my first time participating in a charity anthology, not soloing, and it still leaves me with a warm and fuzzy feeling:) The e-book is only $3.99, and if my story isn't enough to tempt you (why?) there are also stories by Blaine D. Arven, Gryvon, Salome Wilde, Kelly Rand and Stella Harris. Find the antho here: Legal Briefs
In order to facilitate your temptation, have a snippet of my story. Happy Friday!
Life can change in an instant. Give it twenty-four hours and it can turn cartwheels around itself. Evan McKay was dizzy from the speed of litigation, dealing with a person who kept a lawyer in his back pocket.
The conference room that Evan and his own lawyer were shown to in the Sampson & Associates law offices was, in a word, posh. The table was a long piece of polished cherrywood that should have been at odds with the smooth black leather chairs and bright white walls, but came off as sumptuous instead. The firm’s secretary showed them in, and moments later an older woman—with platinum blond hair pulled back into a bun, and a crisp navy pantsuit—came in with two cups of rich-smelling coffee, sweeteners, cream and a cool smile.
“Mr. Klempt and his lawyer, Mr. Delour, will be with you shortly,” she said briskly. “I’m Mr. Delour’s personal assistant, Jeaniene. Is there anything else I can bring either of you while you wait?”
Evan looked at Jeaniene, registered her calm professionalism and air of competency, and barely kept himself from begging, “Holy shit, help me!” Sure, she wasn’t a lawyer, but he kind of thought at this point that she might do a better job of representing him than the guy he’d looked up in the phone book at 2 am last night, and who clearly felt out of his depth if the fidgeting was anything to go by. Karl Price, Evan’s new lawyer, had wanted more time to go over things before any meetings, but one rapid phone conversation with Mr. Delour had left him quivering and conciliatory. So they were here today, not even a full day after the assault, with no real expectation beyond getting owned by Klempt and his bulldog lawyer, just like that asshole had promised last night when the cops took him away. Less than twenty-four hours and he was out of jail, just like he’d said.
“No, thank you,” Evan said at last, once it became clear that his lawyer had nothing to say. He started to reach for a cup of coffee, and then retreated with a wince when it pulled at his bruised collarbone. The doctor told him it wasn’t broken, but it sure didn’t feel good after having a bottle smashed against it.
“Allow me.” Jeaniene sized him up for a moment. “A little raw sugar and plenty of cream, I think.”
“That’s how I like it,” Evan replied, a little surprised. “How did you know?”
“I’m good at figuring these things out,” she said. She fixed his coffee, handed over a cup, and then looked at his lawyer. “Lighten up, Mr. Price. This isn’t an execution.”
Jeaniene and Evan rolled their eyes simultaneously. She took the tray and its remaining cup of coffee out of the conference room. A moment later Klempt and his lawyer came in. Evan looked up, his heart pounding, hands clammy despite their grip on the hot coffee cup, and—
Huh. This wasn’t the same Josiah Klempt that Evan had been smacked around by last night. That man had been larger than life, loud and florid and extremely drunk. Drunk enough to get angry at the twink he hadn’t been able to pick up at the Park Street Pub, drunk enough to go after him, and powerful enough that when Evan jumped into the fight, before the bouncers could reach them, he’d had no compunctions about swinging an empty beer bottle at Evan instead. It had missed his head, thankfully, but his shoulder was turning a grotesque shade of purple and his face and neck were scratched from the broken glass. The bouncers had arrived and pulled them apart, the cops had shown up, and Klempt was taken away. He was shouting the whole time about how he had the best lawyer in Philadelphia on retainer, how he’d be out in no time, how they were nothing, worthless, garbage. That man had been frightening in his fury.
This man looked shrunken, so cowed he didn’t even raise his head as he and his lawyer sat down across from them. He was still wearing his white suit from the night before, stained and stinking of stale beer. His thick dark hair was mussed and the collar of his shirt was wrinkled, as if he’d been twisting it. He sat a little slumped in his chair, quiet and sullen, and Evan turned his eyes toward the other man.
Donald Delour didn’t look like a bulldog. Or a shark, or any of those comparisons that people threw around when they talked about danger and tenacity. Delour was slim, broad shouldered and... well, kind of... pretty. He had dark blond hair and eyes such a pale blue they were almost transparent, except for a dark ring around the iris. He wore a slim cut gray suit that fit perfectly, and his tie was the same pale blue as his eyes. His face was oddly ageless, flawless except for a beauty mark—good grief, a freaking beauty mark— just to the right of his mouth. He didn’t look like a cutthroat lawyer, but when he spoke, his voice was all business.