QSFer Lexi Ander has a new MM paranormal romance book out:
A huge thank you to Queer Sci-Fi for hosting me. Today, I have an exclusive excerpt for my new release, Death Mask. I hope you enjoy the teaser!
About the Book
Grim Misery, the President of the Black Harbinger Motorcycle Club, discovers a wounded warlock and four werepups aboard the club’s LSD shipment. And the news kept getting better and better. Not only is the warlock sitting on the edge of death, he’s illegally bonded to the werepups, which could trigger a war with the werewolves—and he turns out to be Misery’s estranged husband.
Years ago, Griffin turned Misery away to be with another warlock by the name of Marcheso Aldo. Misery left everything behind, even his family, but couldn’t shake the heartbreak Griffin caused. With Griffin thrust back into Misery’s life, he discovers things aren’t as they seem… and everything is about to get much, much worse.
Sitting heavily in my desk chair, I leaned my elbows on the surface and covered my face, feeling out of sorts. Ever since I sensed a warlock’s signature magick, I hadn’t been myself. Within a short period of time, the husband who’d abandoned me for another and who I hadn’t spoken to in decades, arrived on my doorstep wearing my father’s ring, with werepups the packs couldn’t take back, and now I had a mindless bloodbag. Fate was making damn sure I’d call the Red Hoods, the only people who could help me with every complication that had been dropped into my lap.
“Dammit. If they wanted to talk to me, all they had to do was call,” I grumbled.
I searched the drawers, pulling out the old, leather-bound address book and flipping to the correct page. I didn’t trust the modern-day cellphones to hold all of my information, choosing to keep everything separate and written in code. Unless the police employed a linguist well-versed in dead languages, they would never break the cipher.
Using a burner phone, I dialed the number I’d written down over twenty years ago and hoped the Red Hoods hadn’t changed their hotline. If they had, I’d have to log onto the message boards, and I wanted that to be a last resort.
The line rang three times before a rough voice answered with a terse, “Grim.”
I started, not expecting them to know who I was. What kind of technology did they have?
I must’ve been silent for longer than I thought, because the person on the line forged on. “Did you take the ring from him?”
I glared down at the desktop. “Cain?”
“Who the fuck else? Have you forgotten us so completely?”
“No,” I denied, when the answer was a guilty yes. Cain didn’t call me out on the blatant lie. “Are you the one who set me up, sending him of all people? Why the hell would you do that to me?”
“Did you even speak with him, Grim? Don’t fucking tell me you turned him away?”
My anger got the best of me and I yelled back, “What? No, I’m not that much of a bastard to turn out a dying man. You should know me better than that.”
“What are you talking about? Start from the beginning,” Cain ordered, as if I was still someone he could command, but I heard the alarm in his voice, so I didn’t bitch at him. I tried to give him the quick-and-dirty version, but he asked too many questions. Not surprising that I ended up giving him a full report, like I used to. When I finished, Cain was uncharacteristically quiet.
When the silence stretched on too long, I finally asked, “What the hell is going on here? Why did you send him here?”
Cain’s sigh was loud and impatient. I had to grin. I could still get under his skin with little-to-no effort.
“I can’t talk to you about that until you take the ring, Grim. You know that, asshole. But I can help you with the werepup problem.”
“Stop calling me Grim. My road name is Misery. Besides, this is not my problem, it’s his,” I quickly added. Cain didn’t need to assume those pups were going to be around for long. “As soon as he’s well, I’m sure he’ll scuttle back to his master. That dark warlock fucker can handle the werewolves.” And may they chomp on his bones and eat him alive. A deeply petty part of me grinned with sadistic glee. The man who stole my husband would be devoured by at least one alpha, if not all three. Perhaps I’d watch… with popcorn… and my camera phone.
“You still can’t say his name, can you?”
I ignored Cain’s question and told him about Raymond, the reason I called the bastard to begin with.
“I’ll send someone to bring the vampire in. In the meantime, take the fucking ring from Griffin before you make any plans.” I was glad Cain wasn’t there to see me flinch. “And Grim?”
“Goddamn it, don’t call me that.”
Cain’s commanding voice turned soft. “I’m not calling you by your last name, asswipe. It is fucking wonderful to hear your voice. We’ve missed you.” The line went dead. Despite myself, I grinned.
Lexi has always been an avid reader, and at a young age started reading (secretly) her mother’s romances (the ones she was told not to touch). She was the only teenager she knew of who would be grounded from reading.
Later, with a pencil and a note book, she wrote her own stories and shared them with friends because she loved to see their reactions. A Texas transplant, Lexi now kicks her boots up in the Midwest with her Yankee husband and her eighty-pound puppies named after vacuum cleaners.