The Moonlight Market
by Aidee Ladnier
College senior Cory Long tracked his missing sister to the magical Moonlight Market to bring her home. Instead, he found a disorienting world of performers and hawkers, bizarre sights and sounds, and one very familiar showman, Sanderson Beets. Like a drowning man, he latched onto Sanderson, trusting him to navigate the twists and turns of the Market as unerringly as he had steered Cory to passion in their furtive trysts on campus.
But Sanderson was tired of being the quickie in the alley.
Sanderson Beets had escaped the Moonlight Market to attend college, hoping to settle into a normal life, maybe meet someone and fall in love. To obtain that new life he made a dangerous bargain. And when the sinister woman known as the Weaver of Dreams is involved, second chances always come with strings attached…and sacrifices. Sanderson’s debt has come due, and the only payment he has to offer is Cory, and their chance at a relationship.
He almost ignored it.
Tiny bells tinkled nearby.
They sounded closer.
His skin tightened with goose bumps.
Niari glided into the pool of light cast by the lantern hanging on the back of the tent. Her long, inky dress brushed the bells on her ankles and pulled the shadows forward with her.
“Your debt is coming due.” Her trilling, accented voice floated over the noise from the fairway beyond. In front of the tent children giggled and laughed, the calliope blared out its joyous concert, and the lanterns burned away the darkness. But Sanderson stood in the shadows behind…with her.
Sweat coated his palm, and it slipped from the curtain. He swiped at the bead of perspiration on his upper lip, the pit of his stomach icing into a lump.
“I found someone.” He blurted out the words. “A lost soul. Someone who’s lost something.”
Panic bloomed in Sanderson’s chest. Was he actually going to offer Cory to the Weaver? Cory who just wanted to find his missing sister. Cory of the soft hair, bitable nipples, and beautiful, slim cock. Who made Sanderson feel normal. Like a regular guy.
“Good.” Her smile widened, filled with too many tiny teeth that gleamed bright in the lantern light. “Are they tasty and ripe?”
“Madame?” Sanderson’s gut twisted at the hard glitter in her eyes. A chill crept down his spine. She looked…hungry.
He blinked. Niari stood before him, still and silent, waiting, just a woman again. The malevolent flash must have been a trick of the dim light. He shrugged off the unease and shook the numbness from his fingers.
The Lure of the “Up All Night” Story
By Aidee Ladnier
So I call THE MOONLIGHT MARKET an "up all night" story. This is a made up movie genre that I and my husband both enjoy. Some of our favorite “up all night” films are "Into the Night", "Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist”, “American Graffiti”, "Cold Dog Soup", and “After Hours”. The elements of a good "up all night" story are usually:
· an intriguing friend or love interest who is more trouble than they're worth,
· a crazy place (or places) where things happen that never happen in the protagonist's regular life,
· a protagonist living a very staid and boring life that needs to be shook up a little, and
· a night (or a few nights) to encapsulate it all.
These zany movies play upon the fact that when you stay up all night with someone you're tired, your barriers are thin, and you spill secrets without meaning to.
I wanted to write a story like that and THE MOONLIGHT MARKET is the result.
It's gone through several rounds of edits. It went from a single night to a long weekend. It went from being a story of a young man searching for his sister to a novel full of intrigue, betrayal and a little horror. It utilized magical realism from the start—something that is key to the "up all night" story. After all, once you've stayed up for 24 hours, things appear to work a little differently, a little off, and sometimes magic happens when you're not expecting it.
And I guess these kinds of stories speak to me because I'm an "up all night" kind of person. When I make a connection with someone, I'm unsurprised to end up talking to them all night, sometimes wandering from place to place, unwilling to let go of the day I spent with them. So I can relate to Cory and Sanderson and their need to cling together despite the late hour and despite the forces trying to drag them apart. Sometimes, when it's really late, you just want another person there to share the night with and watch the sunrise.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Aidee Ladnier, an award-winning author of speculative fiction, began writing at twelve years old but took a hiatus to be a magician’s assistant, ride in hot air balloons, produce independent movies, collect interesting shoes, and amass a secret file with the CIA. A lover of genre fiction, it has been a lifelong dream of Aidee's to write both romance and erotica with a little science-fiction, fantasy, mystery, or the paranormal thrown in to add a zing.
You can find her on her blog at http://www.aideeladnier.com or on her favorite social media sites:
Buy link for THE MOONLIGHT MARKET - http://www.loose-id.com/moonlight-market.html
GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER
Aidee Ladnier will be awarding $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
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