... His name is Jamie McQueen and he jumped out of a derigabele because a vampyre stole his lady. But I digress. That doesn't happen until the third installment of this serial steampunk romance.
I should honestly tell you that I don't read very many steampunk novels. Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of them. I just don't like how gothic most of them are. This series is not at all gloomy and gothic. It's actually a roliking good time, and at $.99 an installment, it's an affordable one.
There are three outso far with another two planned. They are coming out every two weeks. Book three came out yesterday (4/29) so the next one's due Tuesday, 5/6, and the last one's due on 5/20. They are also self published, so you can't pre-order them. Jennifer Harlow, on the other hand, has several traditionally published urban fantasy series's. If you haven't checked her out yet, give "Varety Vs. the Vampyres" a try.
So anyway. On with the snipet from "Witch's Moon," which also involves a slightly reckless but good hearted werewolf. Enjoy!
Once upon a time, there was a little girl who dreamed of not being cold, wet and hungry. Then one day, a strange little bald man came to take her away. He didn't say he would take away all her problems, but he had made sure she didn't go to bed cold, wet, or hungry that night. In fact, it was a very long time before she found herself overly cold again. Specifically, not until the possibility of finding the long lost grimoire of an Egyptian god caused the little bald man to drag the now grown girl to Montana.
I haven't been warm since.
Tonight, I was not only cold, but also wet and hungry. And tired. I was taking a long walk in the snow, listening to a braggart werewolf tell me more than I ever wanted to know about how his pack came to be named after a bear. All this after working a full shift at the coffee shop. Just shoot me now, at least it will be warm in hell.
"So basically, McMahon means 'of the bear' in gaelic and your grandfather took the name when he emigrated to this country from Ireland?" I asked with a lack of enthusiasm. I knew I was supposed to be playing Mooney's girlfriend in this farce, but I could not bring myself to enjoy it. Much. He did have his arm around me, sharing his body heat. Wolves generated a lot of extra body heat and he did smell nice, like vanilla and cinnamon and warm man. I still wasn't exactly comfortable but since I had to be out "strolling" at nine o'clock at night four days before Christmas, at least I had a source of warmth with me.
"Yep," Mooney agreed affably. "Our original family name was Moran, but thanks to the Irish Mob, that name kept getting him into trouble."
"I'm sure it was only his family name getting him in trouble." I asked sarcastically. That, I did not believe.
"Well," Mooney hedged. "It might have also had something to do with his tendency to woo ladies who were not available."
"So why did he pick a name that meant 'of the bear?' Why not Smith or Jones or something equally forgettable and generic?" I asked. Surprisingly, I found myself being drawn into the story. Mooney was pretty funny when there wasn't any pressure to be all manly in front of an audience. He only had me to perform for and apparently, I didn't warrant the extra effort. Besides, I still hadn't forgiven him for that poisoned coffee remark earlier. He wasn't nearly as funny as he thought he was, I grumped.
"Because the last young lady he tried to step out with was the sister of the McLaughlin brothers. Being as they were wolves themselves, they knew he was a wolf. But they weren't overly clever. Back then, no wolf would ever dream of letting himself be called by a name that meant bear. Or rabbit or horse or any other animal, for that matter. So Granddaddy took the name McMahon and moved west. His troubles stayed behind in New York and the rest is history."
"And that's why there's a wolf pack named McMahon in Montana," I added in my best storyteller voice.
"Oh, no," Mooney corrected. "Granddaddy went to Michigan. Dad was the one to settle in Montana during the oil boom in the early '70s. When Nick was old enough to be the head of the household, Dad took off back to the Great Lakes area. It's just me and Nick in Montana at the moment."
"That's not exactly a pack," I commented dryly.
"Sure it is. See, wolves tend to adopt strays. Nick and I are they only McMahons in our pack, but there's four other wolves under Nick. Ziva's got her own pack, which is only her blood relatives, but once she and Nick quit playing coy and mate up, we'll probably absorb the Wilks, which will give us ten adult wolves."
"You sound pretty sure Ziva's just going to meekly let her pack get absorbed," I said.
"Of course she will," Mooney replied dismissively. "We're the bigger pack and we are an all-male pack. The Wilks are all female. It's normal for the males to lead."
And with that, I was brought back to reality. Mooney the Story Teller had left the building and Mooney the Egotistical Asshat had taken up residence. This wasn't a real date, I reminded myself. And Mooney McMahon wasn't the kind of guy I'd want to go out with anyway. We had a job to do or I wouldn't even be outside in zero degree cold.
"So about the job," I said, bringing the conversation back on track.
"Right. Lex said you had identified several places that need to be checked out."
Note: This picture has nothing to do with either the steampunk books or my own snipet. I just really like it and wish I could have been the gal who walking in on Dean in the shower. ;)