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New Release / Giveaway: Built From Ashes – Fox Beckman

Built From Ashes - Fox Beckman

Fox Beckman has a new queer paranormal romance out (gay/non-binary): Built From Ashes.

Ravi’s world has shattered. Cayenne’s dark secrets have finally come to light, and a mysterious enemy threatens to dismantle The Trust from within. Haunted by betrayal, Ravi must confront the demons of his past while battling for the future of The Trust, the fate of the world, and his own heart. But can something so broken ever truly be mended?

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“I do not like this,” Val mutters for the third time, her voice low.

“Me neither,” Ravi sighs, his eye not wavering from the scope. The rifle is a cool, sturdy presence under his hands. Something he can rely on. Rare as it is for him to roll out his sniper skillset on hunts, he’s strangely nostalgic for his time in Israel. The simplicity of training and nothing else. Being so worn out each day he could slip into a deep, dreamless slumber.

Val rumbles a little under her breath like a building storm. Normally the angel is perfectly content to spend any time with Ravi in companionable silence—one of his favorite things about her—but he agrees the situation is less than ideal.

The pair perch on the second story of an abandoned big-box department store, a building slated for demolition in two months’ time. Scouting hours ahead of the rendezvous, they’d found this vantage point hidden by a defunct escalator with a clean line of sight down to the meeting place. The perfect position to keep an eagle eye on the proceedings.

It’s harder than Ravi expected it would be, staying on the sidelines while Harry and Nate are up close and personal with so many potential enemies. Even with Harry’s Chosen invulnerability and her recent training regimen, she’s still not ready for this kind of threat on her own. But as the most personable members of the team, she and Nate are the best options. One peek at Val’s eyes and it’s obvious she’s not entirely human, and if this information broker is as savvy as Nate’s vampire contact claims he is, the team can’t afford to take chances.

Through the scope Ravi watches the broker, a gentleman of Filipino descent approaching middle age and fighting it tooth and claw. Clothes too flashy, recent hair plugs, rings on every finger. The man gesticulates through a joke, and Harry throws her head back to laugh with him. Nate joins in, grinning wide. He’s leaned up against the broker’s desk, dragged into the middle of the dead mall in a parody of legitimate office space. Several men surround the trio, big slabs of hired muscle in identical plain gray suits and sunglasses.

The broker’s laughter fades as he eyes Harry with speculation. He falls silent, tapping a finger on the desk, one of his rings glimmering.

Something’s off; the guy has twigged. Ravi lines up a shot, breaths slow and measured. Kneeling beside him, Val glances at him and tenses. Her massive maul materializes into her hands.

Nate throws a nervous glance up at their sniper nest and thumbs his nose.

That’s the signal. In the space between seconds, Val disappears from Ravi’s side, a faint rush of displaced air the only sign she had ever been there.

Two of the goons are lined up right next to each other.


Ravi exhales and squeezes the trigger.

The first goon’s head shatters. Gray clay shards rain down as the golem collapses to the ground, limbs cracking sharply on impact. The angle on the second guard isn’t quite as clean, and the round exits through the cheek instead of dead center. That would have done the job on something with a brain, but the magical paper within the golem’s skull is a much trickier target.

However, Val appears in the next instant, and her maul finishes what Ravi’s bullet started, smashing the golem straight down to the chest like a pottery vase. Nate has already jumped out of range of the other goons, making way for the many blades of Harry’s urumi to snake out and take off a golem’s hand in two clean slices.

The broker swears and kicks away from the desk, twisting one of his rings. A shield of thickened air swirls in a wide arc in front of him, some sort of protection enchantment. His eyes dart from the trajectory of Ravi’s unexpected bullet to the ash-haired Amazon who teleported in front of him wielding a two-handed hammer as long as he is tall.

Having calmly locked another round into place, Ravi slides back the bolt and focuses on Harry’s one-handed foe. The shot clips a neat hole through the golem’s sunglasses, and the back of its bald head shatters. It drops like a puppet with its strings cut. Ravi tries not to smirk.

Two golems flank Val and close in, grappling with the haft of her maul, attempting to pull it from her grasp. She reels them both in and slams her forehead into one. The golem staggers, a wide crack splintering its face. Val grins and rams her fist into the crack. When she pulls it out, she’s gripping a long strip of paper. The golem falls lifelessly at her feet, and she turns her attention to the next.

Meanwhile, Harry holds her own, dodging a punch from a big clay fist and keeping her distance. All her dedicated training shows. She yanks one to the ground with the urumi and crunches her boot down on its head.

Nate sidles back into view, having taken care of the most important part of the plan, and slipped away to message Constance as soon as the fight started. To Ravi’s consternation, Nate has a piece of scavenged rebar he obviously intends to use as an improvised weapon. That hadn’t been part of the plan. The professor dives in behind an enemy wheeling on Val and takes a baseball-like swing, cracking the golem across the back of the neck. Chips of clay go flying. The golem spins around and swipes at Nate. He ducks out of the way, but just barely.

Always diving into danger, this guy. Ravi shifts position, sliding back the bolt and taking careful aim as the golem rears a fist back, Nate perfectly positioned to take the full brunt of the hit.

Blinking through the shattered pieces of clay, Nate tosses Ravi a grateful salute with a cheerful grin, as the headless body falls at his feet. Ravi shakes his head while racking in another shell.

The information broker looks to have had enough, deciding that it’s well worth abandoning his bodyguards to make a getaway. Keeping his magical shield in front of him, he starts backing away toward the exit.

Author Bio

Prone to diving way too deep down research rabbit-holes and absolutely incapable of working without a curated playlist in the background, Fox Beckman lives in the Twin Cities and has far too many irons in the fire. Fox is writer, an artist, an occasional wrangler of kangaroos, a longsword fencer, an archer, a roller of dice, and a forager of mushrooms that aren’t deadly (probably).



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