Title: Revealing the Beast, a release celebration
Author: Summer Devon
Cover Artist: Lou Harper
Celebrating the second Solitary Shifters title! here’s an excerpt from Revealing the Beast, a stand-alone title.
No more taking his work home with him.
Glen jingled the keys he’d just dropped in his pocket. “Maybe this is a bad idea. I appreciate you taking the time and I would sure love to interview you, but probably it should be conducted in the office.” He would have to take a pass on observing the translation process.
“I’d rather not go near that place, thank you.”
“No. Of course not, sorry. I’ll buy you another cup of coffee, at Starbucks this time, if you don’t really mind the crowds, and we can just talk.”
“I don’t love them, but I have great control. Is that why we came all the way out here? Because you worried about me in crowds? It’s really not an issue.”
“Naw, that wasn’t it. Great! Starbucks it is.” He realized he was being way too rude. “Can I get you anything before we head on back to the city?”
Easton shook his head. “I thought you wanted me to shift for you. I can’t do that at Starbucks.”
Glen forced a smile onto his face. “It’s fascinating to me, gotta admit it. But I think coming here was a mistake.” He felt something crawl up his spine, affect his breathing. Tension? Desire? Yeah, he was going to take a rain check on desire.
The too-many cups of coffee he’d drunk that day provided him an excuse to take a break from the guy’s presence. “I need to use the john. Be right back.”
Maybe leaving a stranger alone in his house was a bad idea, but he went to the bathroom, peed, then went to the kitchen to gulp down a big glass of seltzer. As he walked back into the living room he heard a clunk, clunk of shoes dropping to the floor. “What are you doing?”
Easton paused, a comical frown on his face. Little kids must love the way he could twist his features into any sort of expression. “You want me to shift. I get naked for that.”
“I said I don’t think it’s a good…” He gave up.
This man clearly could take care of himself and he wasn’t going to try to protect Colt Easton from Glen’s curiosity. “Well. Okay, thank you. But this undressing is kind of making me uncomfortable.” That was the easiest way to describe the shivering excitement he felt. “Can I get you a bathrobe or something?”
A jingle, a zip…and there went Easton’s jeans. He yanked off his tee-shirt and stood in his boxers. A rise in the front of the plain dark boxers showed his semi-arousal. No big surprise to Glen, who felt the tug of lust thrumming back and forth between them.
“I don’t need a bathrobe. It’s fast for me.”
Glen licked his lips and attempted to stay in scientist mode. “The descriptions I’ve studied say that an experienced adult’s shifts last for a full minute or so and involve some fairly awkward moments, and a lot of vulnerability, which is one reason why shifters don’t like audiences. I promise to keep my distance if that’s a help.”
“Naw, not a problem for me. I guess because Mom and Father have the right combo of blood. I got a big slug of good genes, or bad, depending.” He grinned cheerily. Then slipped his fingers into his boxers and slid them off, fast and easy, no striptease. But then he strode in a circle. Showing off. He had something to show too.
The muscles on his back and shoulders flexed and shadowed under his warm-toast skin. The hair covered his chest and belly and led down to a thick cock rising from dark curls. All human in appearance, but with just a sheen of something, perhaps simple perspiration, that slicked his skin.
“You must work out.” Glen’s mouth had gone dry at the sight of that naked body. “Or do your muscles occur naturally? I haven’t had a chance to examine a varelse, I mean not even a picture before, but the description is that they tend to be lean and muscular. Is that what your family is like?” He wanted to shut up. He wanted to move closer to that body. He wanted to run away, fast.
Easton dropped to sit on the rug. He smiled up at Glen, and apparently ignored the series of questions. He patted the carpet next to him. “Feel free to touch me.”
Glen sat where he stood to stop himself from doing just that. “I’ve heard a person’s touch is painful.”
“Not for me. Here’s the thing.” He scooted close so that his breath touched Glen’s face. He laid a hand on his leg and Glen just about jumped out of his skin. All the heat of touch and breath. Easton said, “I do not lose control. Understand? I got control drilled into me from day one. Once I slip from this skin, I might not function like a person, but even with all the fur and teeth”—he bared his human teeth which were only a little bit sharper than most people’s—“and claws”—he held up his curled hands—“I do not lose control. Other people like me might lose it but I do not. Want to see?”
And before Glen could say yes or no, there was another tiny crackle, not so much a noise as motion.
From one breath to another, nothing seemed to move, and then after another inhalation, all breath ceased, held. Colt changed. Everything about him changed. Shift sounded like a slight motion—nothing like the fucking reality. Christ , Glen’s brain screamed and scrabbled. His heart raced so fast it wanted to thump out of his body, run away maybe.
Of course shifting was real. He’d always known it. But never before had he felt that truth. And now he did, to the marrow of his bones.
The person in front of him was gone, replaced by the largest, most terrifying thing he’d ever seen.
Do not run, he told himself. But his terror had to be obvious to the creature with the blunt nose, long muscular limbs, yellow fur tipped with dark.
Not a tiger. This creature seemed leaner, smaller, but not so small anyone in its presence could feel safe. Glen stared into the eyes which gleamed gold flames around the black circle. Oval eyes with huge pupils and no whites. There was nothing human in the totally alien animal.
Glen took a fast inventory, trying to stay calm.
Whiskers? No, or not yet. He looked down.
The thing that had been a hand was on his leg again. The claws were retractable, he noted, and the digits longer than a big cat’s might be.
He laid a finger on the paw. Not thick fur, though softer than any animal he’d ever touched before. The paw.
“Easton? Hello?” he whispered.
The creature tilted its head as if saying, Yeah, whaddaya want?
“I’d like to see what you understand, if you don’t mind?”
The creature’s nostrils flared as it scented the air. Glen wanted it to move away from him. Far away, so his jittering fear could settle before he made a fool of himself by running away or peeing his pants.
“Listen, Mr. Easton? Could you walk to the middle of the room and sit down?”
The varelse sighed and, with the languid grace of a sleepy cat, walked to the middle of the room and sat. He had a tail. Not so long as a tiger’s or lion’s, but it twitched in typical irritated-cat manner.
“Thank you. Um, would you mind lying down?”
The creature slumped down. That seemed uncatlike, especially as it rolled onto its side and watched him.
“You do understand.”
It yawned, showing that—holy shit!—even his teeth had changed. In an un-animallike manner, the creature that had been Colt Easton put a paw over its mouth. It watched him, bored, and scratched itself on the chin with the paw.
“Wow. I mean, I really gotta say thank you. I really appreciate this. And I’m not scared.” That last bit wasn’t true—he was as yellow as mustard—but he figured Easton had shown him the animal form to demonstrate the elegant ability to keep himself in check that he’d bragged about. No need to disappoint the man…animal…who’d revealed so much of himself.
Glen cleared his throat and said, “I understand now what you said about control. If I write this up, I’ll make sure I make it clear you’re not frightening.”
At least not on purpose, not today, not with me, not at the moment, a long list of provisos popped into his mind. Because this creature was not tame or gentle. Glen’s lizard brain screamed at him to be careful—and to call this thing, this varelse, “harmless” was a big, fat lie. The huge paws with the tips of white claws could slice into a man easily.
If he had small children, he’d want them miles away from this creature.
He watched carefully so he wouldn’t miss a moment of what happened next. Fascination and fear blended in Glen’s gut but he had to note every detail: how the lithe body moved, or the smallish ears low on the head twitched back and forth.
Why did the translation occur so fast and easily for Easton?
As he asked himself questions, Glen’s breath eased and his heart rate slowed. This would make him look less like prey, he knew, so he could lean over to study the subtle lines at the corners of the creature’s eyes, dark against darker fur, with only the soft glow of a yellow layer of fur beneath.
The face had a longer nose than most cats, with fur that looked like lovely velvet. Glen saw an eerie laughing intelligence, especially in the eyes. He was startled as a slight pop, as quiet as a footstep on snow, and a rush of warm air hit his face. The air in his face made him blink a little longer.
When he focused again, he stared into the hazel eyes of a man. Gold and green eyes.
“Not such a big deal, eh?” The voice coming from Easton was guttural and slow, as if he had trouble dragging his tongue around the words.
Note: the very first mention of this world is found Predator’s Passion, a menage title cowritten with the talented Linda Gayle.
Desire that runs deeper than blood…
Solitary Shifters, Book 2
Colt Easton is easygoing, fun loving, good with little kids…and he occasionally turns into a beast capable of ripping out a man’s throat. It’s a family secret he’d be more than happy to keep—if there wasn’t a little boy’s life at stake.
A deathbed confession revealed the child could carry Easton blood. The only way Colt can monitor the boy is with a job at his day-care center. The problem? New laws decree that all shifters be tagged. No blood test, no job.
Dr. Jasper Glen is instantly drawn to the outgoing Colt and is certain any child would be safe in the handsome shifter’s care. He ought to know—he’s been studying shifters for years, even invented the blood test that now, to his shame, the government is using against them.
All it takes is a quick vial switch. Except Jasper’s good deed blows the lid off a secret he didn’t even know he was keeping. And triggers a chain of events that makes them all moving targets.
Warning: Contains hot shifter seduction, government goons, and a mad scientist.*
*author’s note: more like an angry scientist.
About the Author:
Summer Devon is the alter ego of Kate Rothwell who also writes under her own name. Summer writes romances of all sorts, including m/m books with Bonnie Dee and on her own.
She has published with Kensington, Samhain, Simon and Schuster, Ellora’s Cave, Total-e-bound, Liquid Silver, Loose Id, Carina Publishing and others.
Summer Devon has kindly offered one copy each of Taming the Bander and Revealing the Beast
Contest will end 5 days from original posting date at 8pm CDT. Must be 18 or older to enter, void where prohibited.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
|This post may contain affiliate links.
|Prism Book Alliance® assumes no liability for the ownership of photos or content used in guest posts and interviews. The post author assumes all responsibility and liability for this content.|