As night descends on the town of Devil's Jawbone, no one is safe. The veil between the living and the dead is at its thinnest, and the darkest side of human nature is boiling to the surface. The supernatural and the natural are colliding, and in this sleepy town, the bump in the night is taking human form. Innocence will be lost; the villain will become the victor; spirits will rise and Satan himself will come to town.
In an eerie collection of short speculative fiction, author BJ Sheppard will grab your imagination, bringing new life to the classic campfire tales synonymous with the scariest of occasions. Halloween will never be the same again.
Words: Approximately 50,000 words
Janine Richards had been the first to see the body, arriving an hour early to train for that Friday’s track meet. Through the indigo rays of morning, she had expected peace and quiet but instead had been gifted with the body of the football team’s quarterback hanging from the centre bar of the goal post. The police had arrived after her frantic call and all the yellow tape in the world couldn’t stop the student body from stopping to share in the horror, the grief that had blanketed DJ High.
Riley fought his way through the crowd and stopped only when Logan’s body, still hanging one hour after its discovery, swung lazily on a gentle autumn breeze. His stomach lurched and his eyes prickled, yet he couldn’t peel them away.
What, only one day previously, had been a generally happy, albeit momentarily pissed, Logan Greenway was now reduced to a bloating blue-black sac of meat swaying from the goal that Riley himself had scored over several times at practice the night before. The soccer net around his neck had bitten bloodily into his neck, which was pitched at an awkward angle and coated with what looked like thick black paint under the gentle rays of morning sun. Riley fought the urge to run, closed his throat against the violent clench in his stomach that had only occurred before when he was sick, and turned from the body that was once his teammate.
Logan had not been suicidal, that much was the truth. He had been distracted, pissed at Coach for his harsh behavior, but Logan Greenway had been the boy who had it all. Nothing about his life had held a suggestion that things weren’t going exactly the way he wanted.
Riley thought to his own home life, to the secret of his father’s sudden departure that lingered on the tip of his tongue ready to be spilled. Everyone has a secret, he thought, playing nervously with the straps of his rucksack. But what was Logan’s?
It didn’t matter anymore. Logan Greenway was dead. And school was out for the day.
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Meet the author:
My name is BJ Sheppard and all at once I found myself an author. Such a strange sensation to actually feel you deserve the thing you had aspired to for many years. After all, all it took was computer access and an inner world that reads like a Sheryl Crow song to pound the keys and translate my crazy ideas onto the page. I feel like I could have business cards printed. Maybe wear a black roll neck and perch my glasses on the tip of my nose. I could drink whisky and smoke a cigar and do all those really stereotypical things I imagine all writers do. Perhaps I could get laid a little more? This is not the end. Nor the beginning. Hell, it isn’t even about me. My boys write themselves; I really don’t have that much say in the matter. As long as my characters need a voice, I have two chubby typing fingers and a need to please— watch this space: there is more to come.
The third book in the series is Cecilia's Mate. I'm excited about this book because Cece is the baby brother of Bracken, the hero in Sadie's Mate.
Space Wars 3
by April Zyon
Published by Evernight Publishing
Erotic Sci-Fi, BDSM
Cecelia Kauller has always felt invisible. First with her family, and then with the man she knows is to one day be hers. But things are about to change, and not for the better in her mind. When Cecelia discovers she’s about to be sold off to a man her older sister plans to have as a lover it all becomes too much. She can’t take any more and runs to the only place she knows she will be safe, with her brother.
Lieutenant Colonel Draven Ackermann has always felt out of place in life. Being a part of the Craegin Armada gave him purpose, and a sense of being. Now that he’s reached a point in his life where he can focus on more than a career, he only wants one person to fill that void. Unfortunately she happens to be his commanding officers baby sister.
Although they can now finally admit who they are to one another there is still one important step both must take, telling Cecelia’s brother that they are bondmates. Not an easy conversation, but one that is necessary for the happiness of them both.
As they settle into their new lives, and prepare for the next step of marriage, the universe decides to shake life up a little more. Draven receives news that shatters all he’s ever known, and turns his life upside down.
Cecelia stands strong at his side, as a bondmate should, and helps Draven to regain his footing. She will always do whatever is necessary to help him as he has helped her through all the changes in her life. She can do now other, he is her love, her heart, and her every dream. He is Cecelia’s mate.
Slowly rubbing a thumb to the scar that rode his jaw line from left ear to midway along the right side, Draven watched Bracken and his wife, Sadie. The two were deep in discussion. One that his colonel didn’t appear to be enjoying. Sharing a look with one of the lieutenants sitting nearby, he almost snorted when the younger man rolled his eyes.
Pretty much how he was feeling about the situation. Not that he was about to stick his nose in between those two. He liked Sadie. She was good for Bracken. For a long time he’d worried for his colleague and friend. Bracken had been so angry for much too long. But the moment Sadie had come back into his life he’d begun to calm. He still had a quick temper on him but he didn’t stay angry for very long. His wife wouldn’t let him.
Finally the two of them seemed to get on the same wavelength and Bracken waved him over. Shooting Sadie a wink, he faced the colonel. “So she talked you into whatever she wanted you to do, I take it.”
“Shut up, Draven,” Bracken muttered.
He was taking that as a yes given Sadie’s satisfied smirk. “Yes, sir. Now, what else needs to be moved? And remember I need to be back on the ship in six hours to accept the delivery of supplies we have coming in.”
“I know,” he said with a nod. He waved to the remaining boxes in view in the storage room. “She has a few furniture pieces in the other unit but we’ll worry about that later. We definitely don’t have time to wrestle them out of here before we leave.” Draven nodded, then signaled a couple of the others over to help him with the last of the boxes. Moving to one, Draven picked it up and took it out to the rental conveyance they had outside the storage bins. He set his box down, turned to take another, and set it in place.
Once it was loaded up he moved to the control panel and programmed in the address of Sadie’s ancestral home. When it acknowledged the address, he set the conveyance off with its instructions. Turning, he headed back to where the others waited. They’d be going to meet the rental soon enough.
* * * *
He glared at Sadie when she handed him another box with directions on where it needed to go. “You know you’re damn lucky I like you, right?”
She smiled at him, then pointed in the direction he was supposed to go.
Damn woman was a bossy little thing. Shaking his head, he took the box up to the room the couple had decided would be used for storage until Sadie could go through everything she’d brought over. He set it down but stalled on his way back down to the main level. He needed to get out of there and back to port.
If he went down there again, Sadie would task him with something else. Which would delay his departure greatly, and Bracken had given strict orders on who needed to be on the destroyer when they had anything brought on board.
When Sadie moved into another room Draven slipped down the stairs and sidled up next to Bracken. “Colonel, I have to leave. I’ll be cutting it close in getting back to the port as is.”
“Go, I’ll handle my wife,” Bracken told him.
“Yeah, good luck with that.” Grinning, he headed for the front door. Once he was outside he checked his time piece and walked down the path to the front street and cursed. He would be cutting it way too close.
Draven had dug out his communications piece and was about to put it in place in his ear, when a blur came around the bend and slammed into him. He dropped the piece and caught the tiny frame. The sound of his name in her breathy tone had him tightening his hold on her arms. “By the stars, Cecilia.” He’d have said more but the panicked look in her eyes stalled him out.
“What’s wrong?” he asked softly, automatically pulling her in closer to his body.
Her mouth went dry when he bared himself to her. She couldn’t speak when he asked her if he passed muster. She just looked up at him and nodded dumbly. “Yes.” She licked her suddenly dry lips and let out a breathy sound. He was glorious. His body was dark all over. He was built with thick ropes of muscles, and his cock, holy mother of life it was impressive. It was thick and long and pointed seemingly straight up and toward her. “Are you sure that this will work?” He looked bigger than he had felt against her the last night that they went to sleep together. It was intimidating.
“Cecilia, little one, of course it will work. Remember that we are made for one another. You can touch, you know,” he said quietly. Reaching out for a hand, he brought it up to his chest and pressed it flat so her palm rested fully on his skin. “Touch and learn me. It will help to alleviate some of your concerns. The rest you will need to trust me on.”
She allowed her hand to move over the broad expanse of his chest. She was chewing her lower lip as she touched him. Her nails lightly scraped over his chest and she smiled at the white lines that were left in their wake. It wasn’t enough to harm, just enough to tease. “You always feel so good. I know you would never hurt me and you do have my trust, Draven, completely.”
He slid his hand up her arm, then moved it to cup her cheek. “I’m honored that you trust in me.” Draven watched her as she scratched her nails a little lower. He sucked his stomach in when she dipped even lower.
She was looking down, watching her hand as she moved it down. Her fingers lightly brushed over his cock and she gasped. Then, before she could stop herself, she closed her hand around his shaft and let it slide down slowly. Her fingers wouldn’t meet around his thick shaft so she put her other hand on his dick as well. She began to stroke him.
A low growl from him had her peeking up. His eyes were narrowed on her, his features a little harsher, color riding his cheeks. Using his thumb, he tipped her face up as he leaned in. Draven caught her mouth in a kiss that was unmatched by anything prior.
Cece allowed herself to give in to the kiss. She squeezed him gently, then began to move her hands back up his body and wrapped them around his neck. She leaned into his embrace, swaying into his touch, and moaned as she kissed him back.
Draven’s arms wrapped around her, pulling her body tighter to his own. Then they were moving, and she had the sensation of tumbling before the softness of the bed met her back. His weight pressed her deeper into the bedding while he continued to kiss her like a man starved.
She lifted a leg slightly so that it could brace against his hip. She shifted under him and tugged at his hair. When they parted she was panting, breathless and desperate. “I love kissing you, Draven Ackermann. Just so you know, I’m never letting you go.”
“You’d better not, Cecilia Kauller, because I never intend to let you go, either. You are mine, now and for all of time.” He kissed her again, this time a little gentler as he stroked his hands over her torso, his thumbs brushing to the curve of her breasts.
She shivered when his thumbs brushed over her breasts and up to caress her nipples. She bit her lower lip and closed her eyes as she arched into the touch. Draven was pressing light kisses to her throat. Slowly he worked his way down to her upper chest before shifting his body a little lower, giving him the room he needed to nuzzle at her breasts. The flick of his tongue to her nipple had her jolting under him.
“Do that again, please?” Cece asked as she shifted under him to take more of what he was offering.
Draven slid his lips over her skin to her other breast. His tongue slid slowly over her tight nipple. When she gave a shiver he sucked the tight bud into his mouth to pull hard on it, drawing it in deeper. She felt the smallest scrape of his teeth to her skin before he flicked her nipple with his tip of his tongue repeatedly.
“Oh God yes.” She put her hands to his head and held him there. “Again, please,” was all she could think to say.
Cecilia could feel his laugh against her body as he gave in to her demands. He looked up to her and held her gaze as he scraped his teeth over her flesh slowly. Her nipple slipped from between his teeth when he lifted his head. Leaning up, he pressed a kiss to her chin, then wiggled down her body more. With soft kisses to her sternum, her belly, then her hips, she could feel her body winding tighter with the sensations he was helping to create.
She moved her hands to his head and touched him. “That feels so good,” she moaned, enjoying his wandering mouth. “I think I could become addicted to you doing this to me.”
“I’ll do this every single night if I have anything to say about it, a couple times during the day as well if you’re feeling adventurous, and then whenever the mood strikes.” Pushing her legs further apart, Draven got her to raise her knees so she was fully bared to him. His warm breath brushed along her damp folds as he stared at her.
“Oh I love how that sounds. Do you think that you will be able to…” She trailed off when his breath moved across her silky wet folds. “Draven.” She moaned and shuddered.
He brushed his nose to her inner thigh. “Do I think I’ll be able to what, little one?” he asked with a smile.
“I forgot.” She whimpered, then shifted slightly.
Draven chuckled softly and pressed a kiss to the seam of her leg. He blew another breath over her pussy before leaning in to run his tongue lightly up her slit.
“Holy mother. That feels so good. I’ve never felt anyone do that to me before.” Of course she hadn’t. She had never felt anyone except him touching her intimately before. “I think I’ve just found my new favorite thing.”
“I’d reserve judgment a little longer,” he advised. Sliding his hands over her skin, he pulled her folds apart. Then he mouth was on her, his tongue stroking over her, his low growl vibrating against her most sensitive parts.
“Draven” She sobbed when his tongue stroked over her clit. When he growled she felt her hips jump. “Draven, more. Please. Fuck.” She never cussed but was right now.
His mouth latched onto her aching clitoris, and he sucked hard. All the while his fingers stroked over her pussy, one finger finally sliding into her sheath to gently stroke her in time to his sucking actions.
“Ohhhhhh…” she said in a long and low moan of a sound. The finger inside of her pussy while his tongue worked her clitoris had her seeing stars, literally. She shuddered and shifted her hips slightly to take more of him into her body.
The slight bite of his teeth on her sensitive nub sent a shiver through her. But then her mind became focused on the fuller feeling of her pussy when he added another finger. His free hand stroked up her belly to her breasts, where he began to pluck at first one nipple, then the other.
She covered his hand with hers and squeezed her nipple tightly with his hands. “I love the way that feels.” She shifted to accommodate more of his body between her legs and to give him room to play more with her as he wanted to.
Draven slid his hand free from under hers. “Play with your nipples,” he ordered in a husky tone. He moved his hand down to hold her folds open and proceeded to flick the tip of his tongue to her clit rapidly while thrusting his fingers in and out of her pussy.
She moved her hand from his head and placed both of them on her nipples. She began to tug and pull at them. She twisted them and gasped just as his fingers thrust deeply into her pussy.
“That’s it, Cecilia,” he praised. Curling his fingers inside of her, he seemed to find some spot that had her toes digging frantically into the bedding. Then he put his mouth back over her clit to suck at the throbbing nub, adding in a little bite now and again.
Cece arched up against him and sobbed. She braced her feet on the bedding and lifted her pussy up closer to him. She loved the way this felt, the fabulous feeling of his hands on her body and his mouth on her pussy.
Draven cupped her ass when she lifted up, a digit moving to rub the tight bud between her buttocks. He pressed firmly while sucking harder at her clit and curling his fingers up inside of her.
With his fingers in her pussy and the one touching her anus she saw stars. It took her breath away, the sensations making her gasp. She then screamed and lifted her body up, taking his fingers deeper. The one near her anus slipped inside and she came, hard.
The next thing she knew Draven was stroking her leg gently, pressing kisses to her face, and her arms were wrapped around his neck. “Shh, I have you, little one. Slow your breathing down for me, Cecilia,” he said gently as he continued to soothe her.
Doing as he instructed, she nodded and sighed. “That was amazing. I never dreamed that an orgasm would be so good.”
“That was only the first part of it all,” he told her. “There is so much more that is to come your way.” Slipping an arm around her, he squeezed her close while pressing a kiss to her lips. “The real question is, are you ready for more, Cecilia?” She took a deep breath and licked her lips after his kiss. “I want more. I want everything.”
He gave her another leisurely kiss, curling his tongue around hers and teasing her gently. He settled his body over hers and she could feel his cock rubbing against her pussy and over her clit. His one hand didn’t stop moving but continued to stroke her leg, over her hip, and up her ribs before going back down her side.
“So good.” She lifted again and moaned. “I love the feel of you touching me.” The head of his cock rubbing against her slit had her whimpering and clutching at him.
“Easy, little one.” He cupped her face in a hand, his thumb brushing over her skin while he stared down into her eyes. “You need to relax for me and take slow, deep breaths.” His cock pressed to her opening. Moving his hand, he touched her pussy, spreading her lips as he pushed his cock to start filling her slowly.
He filled her to capacity, and beyond. She had to stop him once and shift slightly but then he pushed into her more. “Draven.” She whispered his name. This was making love. This wasn’t about the domination and submission, but this was their first time making love.
“Breathe, Cecilia,” he said in a deeper, rougher tone. “You need to remember to breathe.” His hands guided her legs up and around his hips until she could hook her ankles together over his ass. Very slowly he pulled his cock almost all the way out of her pussy, then pressed back in just as slowly.
She breathed, recalling that he had said she could control her body with her breathing, with focusing. She tried to do just that. She forced herself to breathe in and out and to watch him as he made love with her. “I’m so glad I waited for you,” she confessed, reaching up to put her hand on his cheek and pull him closer. Catching her lips in a kiss, he cupped her head between his hands. He was still moving his hips, thrusting his cock in and sliding out of her body slowly. As they kissed he began to pick up his pace a little at a time.
She moved with him, her body naturally finding its rhythm with him and causing her to brush against his chest with her breasts from time to time. Each time her rock hard nipples brushed against his muscular chest she gasped aloud, the pleasure moving between nipples and clit and back again.
“You are so beautiful,” he said, his gaze roaming over her face. “So open, so giving, and all mine. Forever, Cecilia. Nothing else will be nearly enough for me.” Putting his hands on the bed, he pressed up a little and began to thrust faster and harder into her eager body.
“Good.” She moved along with him, her body naturally finding that right rhythm with him, her legs around his hips. She dug her heels into his ass, pulling him tighter to her body as she did so.
“Touch your clit, Cecilia.” Rolling his hips slightly gave her a new sensation. “Rub that tight little nub for me.” Draven was adjusting himself over her, each movement changing how his cock slid into her.
Reaching between them, she touched her fingertips to her clit and began to rub, sobbing his name as the feelings that were coming from him pumping in and out of her body had her flying higher and higher.
“Please, Sir.” She shivered, the force of her pleasure doubling at those two small words.
The look on his face when she said those words nearly had her coming apart. But something held her back. Leaning in, Draven pressed a hard kiss to her lips. “Come for me, Cecilia,” he said in a demanding tone.
It was his demand far more than anything that had her screaming as she climaxed. She came hard, her body shaking, and felt her nails biting into Draven’s back. She whimpered and needed him to come with her.
A few more hard thrusts and she felt it. The shudder rippled through his body before his cock pulsated in her sheath. Draven collapsed over her, wrapping his arms around her to hold her tight as his seed filled her.
She felt each pulse of his seed into her waiting womb and closed her eyes. “Gracious,” she whispered softly, then yawned. “Will you hold me, please? Just keep me close?”
“You don’t even have to ask.” Pressing his lips to her cheek, he rolled them so she was lying on top. Then he covered her up, tucking the blankets around her gently before once more wrapping her in his arms. “Sleep for a little while, Cecilia. Then we need to get up for the official welcome back meal.”
“Okay.” She rubbed her cheek to his chest and drifted off into sleep.
When Sela Chavez inspects the unit in a strip mall that will soon become her very own dance studio, she’s on the cusp of a dream come true. Until she spies Damien Rivera, her brother’s boss. She knows he’s financing the project, and she knows he’s a player.
When he invites her to a concert, she can’t seem to look away from his gaze. But gorgeous eyes or not, she has no intention of becoming Damien’s next conquest.
Damien is part of a group of friends financing the efforts to put a stop to The Madeline Project. The program now has a mind of its own, thanks to a virus called Tommy Twister. These men have power, resources, and money, but they’re as ruthless and possessive as the storms ravaging Earth.
They call themselves the Weathermen…
He moved to the edge of the bed and pointed toward the floor. “On your knees.”
It didn’t matter either way to her, but there was something quite decadent about kneeling in front of a man to suck his dick. She slid off the bed and dropped to her knees. At least the bedroom was carpeted. It would have been painful kneeling on the stone downstairs the way he had done for her.
Damien groaned softly and held her head with both hands as she licked him from his balls to the tip of his cock, and back again. She tortured him as he’d done to her, enjoying the way his soft groans grew louder, and the grip on her head increased.
Sela took several inches at a time into her mouth and sucked, alternating that with moving her lips up and down his shaft, increasing the length she took inside each time. He squirmed on the bed for several minutes, and then he pulled his cock away from her. “I can’t take it. I don’t want to come in your mouth. I’ve changed my mind.”
“Are you sure? I don’t mind if you do.”
The tender look he gave her melted her heart. “I’ll keep that in mind, but I want to fuck your hot pussy again. Come back up here and get on your hands and knees.”
She couldn’t have disobeyed that voice if she’d wanted to. Sela crawled onto the bed and did as he asked, then moaned softly as he caressed her ass cheeks and her soaking wet pussy. “You have the most gorgeous ass I’ve ever seen.”
“I’m glad you like it.”
He nipped at each cheek, and she giggled. “I could eat you up, Sela.” The mattress shifted, and she watched him grab one of the strawberries they hadn’t eaten. Thinking he was going to put it into his mouth, she gasped when he rubbed it slowly over her ass cheeks and the backs of her thighs, following each pass of the berry with his tongue.
The stickiness of the strawberry, coupled with his hot tongue, was surprisingly arousing. She moaned softly as he plucked another berry off the plate and rolled her onto her back. He straddled her at hip level, and rubbed the fruit over each breast, sucking and licking the juice off her. When he finally stopped, he kissed her, and he didn’t seem to mind that she was sticky. After he released the kiss, he crawled off her and asked her to get on her hands and knees again.
“Well that was new,” she said.
Damien caressed her pussy from behind. “Did you like it?”
“I loved it.”
“Then I’ll have to experiment with other things.”
Her orgasm was so close she could hardly stand it. “Like what?”
“Oh, I don’t know. Ice, perhaps? Peanut butter? Hot sauce?”
She giggled again. “You’re very sexy, Damien. I’ve never known a man like you.”
He kissed her lower back. “And I’ve never known anyone as fun and adventurous as you, Sela. Thank you for this.”
Before she could answer him, he slid his cock into her pussy. She moaned loudly as he thrust deep and hard, and just as she thought she was going to come again, he pulled out and picked up one of the berries again.
Sela moaned softly as he rubbed it over her pussy. Her arousal shot through the roof. She’d never imagined being covered in strawberry juice would feel this incredible. She wanted him to keep going, but when he licked her from behind, she cried out in pleasure. Kink with fruit. Who’d have thought it could be this much fun?
As he continued to use his tongue to send her excitement to new heights, he reached underneath with his left hand and played with her clit. She pushed back against him, arching her back and silently begging for release, but he stopped before she came.
“Oh, please! This is crazy fun, but I’m dying here!”
He chuckled and kissed each ass cheek. “Do you think I’m not ready to explode?”
“I think you’re having way too fun much torturing me.”
He sank his dick into her pussy again, fucking her so slowly she thought she’d go out of her mind with need. At the same time, Sela enjoyed it far more than she could process. “Sadist,” she muttered.
His comment made her laugh, but that soon turned to loud moans as he fucked her rougher now. He still didn’t let her come, but Sela was loving this. When he pulled out and returned to rubbing the strawberry over her ass and pussy, she sighed, closed her eyes, and simply let go. Sela wanted to experience all the sensations without analyzing them or worrying about the impending orgasm. This was way too much fun to ask him to stop.
“You’re all sticky, niña.”
“I’m sure I am.”
“Are you enjoying this?” His soft, smoky voice sent shivers down her spine.
“I am. Very much.”
He caressed the side of her breast. “I want you so hot for me that you can’t stand it.”
You’d have thought that Ben and Nikolas would have learnt that their romantic holidays inevitably end up as disasters. A short break on the polar ice sees them trapped in a nightmare of murder and deceit. Neither of them, however, foresees the long-term impact that endless winter has on their relationship. They return with a metaphorical darkness that threatens everything they have created together. Desperate and fearing for Nikolas’s life, Ben makes a bargain with a surprising ally. For the first time, Nikolas meets an enemy more powerful than he is. But fortunately, not as sneaky… Words: 80,000 words
The view from the window hadn’t changed since the last time Ben had studied it—one grey, depressing wing of the building, the car park below, and some scraggly trees, still bare in January. Farther away, he could see the roofs of some houses, and perhaps, if he let his imagination run away with it, the distant hills of Bodmin moor. He didn’t speculate in the realms of fiction much these days. He brought his gaze back to the utilitarian architecture.
The seagull was back, perched on the sill, as it had been day after day. Sometimes, it tapped the window with its beak. Ben was never sure if the gull wanted in, or for him to open the window and join it outside, flying or falling. Freedom either way.
Secretly, Ben thought the gull was an albatross. It was so vast, so impressive, that it seemed inconceivable that it could be an ordinary gull blown in from Plymouth Sound and sitting on the grimy ledge. The first albatross perhaps to make it to England, tossed on ocean currents all the way from the Chatham Islands, lost, alone. If it was, then it was in good company. Ben had never felt so lost or so alone, and he had spent a fair proportion of his life being buffeted by metaphorical winds far stronger than those that prowled the vast oceans of the world.