Wednesday Randomness: Promptly Penned #33

It’s time for another Promptly Penned post. We’re all given the same prompt and see where it takes us. The prompt itself is in CAPS in the post.

Closing my eyes, I braced my hands on the edge of the sink and dropped my head down. Everything hurt, I had blood everywhere – could still feel some dripping down my face – and it was taking everything in me not to puke my guts out. Fuck, fuck, fuck. Tonight had not gone as planned.

Plan? What plan? You had no plan!

Christ, I was hearing James’ damned voice in my head, now. I supposed it was appropriate since he hadn’t said a damned word since we’d gotten home. The silence was deafening, and apparently, my brain was going to make up for that.

“Hey.”

Yelping, I straightened, and immediately stumbled backwards. Would have ended up on my ass or cracking my head off the tub if James hadn’t stepped forward and steadied me.

“Sorry,” he murmured.

“Not your fault. Didn’t hear you come in.”

“Obviously.”

Narrowing my eyes at the dry drawl, I met his gaze in the mirror. “You need something?”

He stared for a good long minute or two then, reaching around me, he pulled open one of the cabinet drawers and withdrew the first aid kit. He motioned with his free hand. “Sit.”

Still watching him warily, I sat on the closed toilet as he opened the kit and began setting out supplies. He then grabbed a couple washclothes from the other drawer and wet them. As he was doing this, he caught my eye in the mirror.

“ALL THAT BLOOD LOOKS GOOD ON YOU, babe. IT REALLY BRINGS OUT YOUR EYES.”

“Smart ass,” I murmured.

He was trying to downplay everything, make me laugh – I knew that. But I wasn’t listening to his words, now. Because the slight catch of his voice, the stiffness in his posture, the tightness around his eyes were all telling another story.

He was freaked out.

A look I rarely saw on the man.

Shit.

When he turned toward me and lifted the washcloth, I caught his wrist. “I’m okay. I promise, I’m okay.”

He jerked out of my grasp and took a step back. Pressing his lips together, he closed his eyes. His Adam’s apple bobbed as he swallowed audibly before taking several slow, deep breaths.

Then, those clear blue eyes were on me, bright and almost wild. “Well, I’m not.”

“Wha–” I cleared my throat as fear jumpstarted my heart and froze my skin with an instant prickling sweat. “What’s wrong?”

“If you’re going to keep ignoring everyone’s advice and feedback and keep doing shit on your own, I can’t…” He gestured between us. “I can’t do this.”

My mouth went dry. “Don’t…don’t say that.”

“I’ll still be here,” he said stiffly. “I said I’d help, and I will. I will always help protect you. But I can’t–” He broke off, mouth snapping shut.

Blood rushed in my ears, and I actually started to shake. If freaked out was a rare look for James, this – damp eyes, muscle twitching in his cheek from clenching his jaw, hands fisted at this sides and his posture no longer stiff, but…defeated – this was even rarer…and infinitely more unnerving.

“When I caught up to you,” he continued, voice quiet and rough, “you were on the ground, covered in blood and not moving. I thought you were dead… All because you’re too damned impulsive and believe invincible – and fuck if your friends will tell you otherwise because they’re under the same fucking misconception.”

“James, I’m sorry.”

“I know, but sorry isn’t going to save your life the next time. I know how important what you’re doing is to you. I get it, but you’re more important. Don’t you understand that?” He stepped forward and cupped my face, his hands cold and trembling. “You are more important. Losing you is going to destroy me.”

“You’re saying it like it’s a given, but it’s not,” I said quickly, desperately. “And, if you’re really staying, no matter what, I don’t see how not being with me would make it easier if something were to happen to me. It’s not like our relationship, or rather lack of, is suddenly going to wipe away the feelings you have.”

“It’s a given if you keep doing what you’re doing,” he countered then sighed, thumb skimming along my lower lip. “Nothing is going to wipe away my feelings for you, but I can distance myself, try to protect myself for the inevitable.”

I shook my head. “So, are you breaking up with me?”

“Are you going to admit you’re important, and start acting like it?”

“That sounds like emotional blackmail.” I stood, crowding into his space and settling my hands on his hips, and his fingers twitched against my face. Panic was still kicking my ass, but relief was quickly pushing it out. If we were done, he’d outright say it.

“Babe,” the corner of his mouth quirked up, even though his voice was still raspy with emotion, “I’m a thief, a criminal, and you’re surprised over a wee bit of emotional blackmail?”

I pressed even closer and rested my forehead on his shoulder. His arms came around me fully, and my chest ached as I heard him sniff. “Not really blackmail, just honesty…but still brutal.”

His embrace tightened momentarily before he let go. “We need to get you cleaned up.”


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn Cease | Siobhan Muir

September 2018 Song Fic – “Need the Sun to Break” (Dark of Morning lyrics) – James Bay

This month’s song is James Bay’s “Need the Sun to Break”.

Going off the chorus this time around:

I need the sun to break, you’ve woken up my heart
I’m shaking, all my luck could change
Been in the dark for weeks and I’ve realized you’re all I need
And I hope that I’m not too late,
I hope I’m not too late

This is gonna be a short one… Mostly due to the fact I’m a dirty procrastinator, and I have to get up early to run hubs to the airpot…and I desperately need sleep. LOL

So, here we go…


After the door closed and silence fell, I moved over to the coffee table and sat down facing the couch and the man stretched out on it. Exhaustion weighed heavily, but I couldn’t think of sleep. Not now.

I sighed and reached out to take Cam’s hand, cradling it between mine. This wasn’t how I expected our reunion to go. Oh, I hadn’t expected anything to go smoothly. I’m not an idiot. I’d imagined yelling, slammed doors, tense talks… And I’d hoped it would end with us back together. Hoped, not counted on.

Of course, I hadn’t expected to come back and find Cam in the middle of a shitstorm that defied all explanation. Now, my main focus wasn’t repairing the relationship I’d spectacularly ruined. It was keeping this man safe, keeping him alive.

Right now, though, the only thing I could do was wait for him to wake up. And hope he could fill in the blanks of what I already knew about his abduction, captivity, and what had happened since. And clue me in on how the fuck he was able to do what I’d seen him do earlier.

I leaned forward and brought his hand to my lips. Pressing my lips to his knuckles, I closed my eyes. After all that, we could figure us out. If there was an us… Until then, I could only hope, as I had been for months, that I wasn’t too late.


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn Cease | Kris Norris

Wednesday Randomness: Promptly Penned #32

It’s time for September’s Promptly Penned. This month’s prompt is: You’re in an interrogation room. A man walks in and throws a bunch of photographs on the table in front of you. The photos are old and were taken at different points in history. You’re in each one. He demands to know who you are.

This was the perfect prompt to fit into my Albion’s Circle series. So, here we go.


~Merlin~

Eyes closed, I focused on my breathing. It was over, finally. I’d spent the last week cleaning up Mordred’s mess. Now, I could rest easily that nothing with his taint remained or influenced anyone or anything.

Of course, now that it was over, that meant I was alone. And nothing could distract me from that cruel fact. My chest ached as I drew in another long breath. It wasn’t the first time, and likely wouldn’t be the last. But I’d hoped. Even knowing, accepting, that we couldn’t come out of the ages old battle with Mordred without casualties, I’d still hoped and prayed that someone would be left behind with me. While preparing for the opposite.

But even preparing didn’t diminish the overwhelming press of anger and grief. Yes, we had prevailed—Mordred was defeated, again, this time around—but Annwyl was still lost. And Arthur…Morgana…the knights. I wouldn’t see them again until the next life. All I could do now was wait. And I hated every second of it.

“Mr. Eliad, thank you for coming in. I’m Detective Andrews.”

I opened my eyes, watching the tall, fair-haired man enter and close the door behind him. “You’re welcome, though I was hardly given a choice, detective.”

“Well,” he lifted one shoulder as he sat across from me, “thank you for coming in so calmly, then.”

“Mm hmm.” I folded my hands and rested them on the metal table and straightened in the less-than-comfortable chair. “Perhaps you could let me know what this is about?”

“You were seen near the site of the explosion in the warehouse district last week.” When I didn’t answer, he sighed and laid the folder he held on the surface between us. He withdrew a couple of photos and set them, one by one, in front of me. “You were caught on camera. You look injured, covered in dirt or soot.”

I glanced down at the pictures. Though grainy, they were clearly of me. And certainly not at my best. I met his gaze and lifted a brow, remaining silent.

“Could you tell me what you were doing in the area?” he asked.

“Just walking around.”

“Really?” He snorted. “You just happened to walking around an area that had practically been leveled, looking like you’d barely made it out of said area?”

“Yep.”

“Why were you so dirty, then? You strike me as a fairly well-kept person.” He gestured towards the clothing I currently wore then tapped one of the photos. “Nothing like this.”

“I’d been gardening before my walk. It’s messy work.” I couldn’t hold back the smirk curving my mouth.

“Messy work?” He pursed his lips then nodded. Opening the folder, he continued, “I did some digging and found that you often find yourself around ‘messy work’. Nearby the wreckage of another explosion, the fallout of an earthquake that decimated half a city out west, evacuating another city from a horrendous flood…” As he spoke, he flipped picture after picture toward me.

I lifted one, stared at my own face—filthy, grief-stricken, exhausted. This photo was a copy of a one from decades ago. This was more than just a little digging, and something this detective—or anyone else—shouldn’t have access to.

“Where did you get these?” I demanded, voice soft and steady.

“That’s not important. What I want to know is how you’re in all these photos—because as impossible as it seems, they’re all of you! What did you have to do with the explosions last week? Good men and women died, and I want answers!” He slapped a palm on the stack of photos…and looked vaguely disappointed when I didn’t jump or outwardly react. “Mr. Eliad, you need to start talking. The truth now, not some inane tale of gardening and walks.”

“The truth?” I laughed harshly. “Okay, the truth is my name isn’t Eliad. I just took that name this time around. My first name is Merlin, though—I bet that seemed odd to you, right? Not exactly a common name, nowadays. Well, I wasn’t named for the famous wizard in all the stories. I am him. I am King Arthur’s Magical—yes, the King Arthur. And the truth that you want so desperately is nothing like those stories, which for the most part are ridiculous, and I had a hell of a fun time making them up.

“I, along with my king and others, are brought back to fight Mordred—another familiar name, yes?—and save this wretched Earth and its people, time and time again. That was what was happening last week, and that was just the final battle. This time, we’ve been fighting for months, and now, I am tired. I’ve lost people, as well, Detective Andrews, and now that the mission is complete, I would like my time to remember and grieve for those lost…including those good men and women you mentioned.”

“You’ve got to be—”

I waved a hand between us, and he froze. Rubbing my aching temples, I stared down at the photos. “Though it seems I’m not done cleaning up quite yet. Where did you get these photos?”

“They were mailed to me,” he responded woodenly.

“All of them? Even the ones from last week?”

“Yes.”

“Do you know who sent them?”

“No.” He shook his head. “They were in large envelope. There was no note, no return address. The lab wasn’t able to find any fingerprints on the envelope or the photos so it was all a dead end.”

“For you, maybe,” I murmured. “Do you have the envelope? The original photos you received?”

“Yes, in evidence.”

“Go get them, please.”

Without a word, he stood and left the room. I stacked the photos neatly and closed them back into the folder, annoyance filling me at the inconvenience of all of this. When Detective Andrews came back in, he immediately handed me the evidence bag containing the envelope and photos. I tucked that into the folder, as well, then pushed to my feet, taking all of it with me. I met the other man’s gaze and sighed.

“You seem like a good cop, following any lead. Unfortunately, this is one case that the truth isn’t going to be revealed. Can’t be.” I reached up and touched his forehead, muttering the memory spell quickly. “Forget the photos; they don’t exist. I came in today to tell you what I saw when I was out for a walk the night of the explosion.”

I dropped my hand and cleared my throat. Andrews blinked several times then took a step back, opening the door for me.

“Thank you again, Mr. Eliad, for coming in. We appreciate your help in the matter.”

“Of course.” I strode out the room, but before leaving the building, I went to bullpen and asked where Detective Andrews’ desk was. Then, walking by it on my way out, I spoke the spell that would erase any mention of me from the good detective’s notes—both written and on his computer.

I tightened my grip on the folder as I stepped into the bright sunlight. I needed to get back home and figure out who had sent these in.

It wasn’t quite over. The mess wasn’t completely cleaned up. My grief would wait…my ever-patient companion.


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn Cease | Kris Norris | Siobhan Muir

September 2018 Photo Flash Fiction

Hello, all! I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. It’s time for another photo flash fic. This is the photo we’re working with today.

Tuning out the grumbling complaints coming from the backseat, she closed her eyes and breathed deeply. And held for several long seconds before slowly releasing.

She hated this day, this trip, this…this annual pilgrimage. So much. More than the kids behind her—even if they couldn’t imagine that—and for very, very different reasons.

She startled, eyes flying open as a warm, heavy hand settled on her thigh. Glancing over, she wondered what was going through his mind. He didn’t look at her, keeping focused on the road ahead, but his fingers pressed a bit more firmly, a silent message that he knew. He knew she was hurting. He knew she hated this. And he knew how important this was for all of them.

Eyes burning, she laid a hand over his, and he immediately turned his palm up to nestle against hers as their fingers intertwined.

They didn’t speak, though, and even the kids quieted, as they drew approached their destination. The silence was oppressive as the engine was shut off, and all of them just sat a moment.

“Come on.”

The hushed words from the driver’s seat spurred everyone into motion. She was the last one out, needing another couple moments to compose herself. Later, she could cry. Would cry. In the dark, wrapped in his arms, she would let go, and he would take it, like he always did.

She got out of the car and followed her family. Despite the heaviness over her, her lips quirked up slightly as she took in the sight of the tall, handsome figure of her husband, with their three children

“Where’s Mama?”

Her youngest daughter’s words floated on the air, and she quickened her stride so she could catch up.

“I’m here, baby.” She combed her fingers through the soft blonde curls as they continued.

Her breath caught as they rounded the corner. No matter how many times they came, no matter how many times she saw, she didn’t think she’d ever get over the horror that filled her every time.

The destruction before them… What had led to it… She trembled, and she couldn’t stop the tears that escaped.

“God,” her daughter—their oldest—huffed. “I don’t know why we have to be here. Every stupid year. Not like anything changes. Why couldn’t I have stayed home? This is so dumb.”

“We come to remember. Remember what happened, and what could happen again. And to remember those who were lost.” She spoke slowly, eyes still on the hollowed-out buildings mind on all the lives destroyed. Then, cutting her gaze to her daughter, who stared at her with eyes just like her father, she hardened her voice. “And to be grateful. Because of them, we’re free.”

“Mom—”

“Before all this,” she waved a hand around, “you would have to hide who you are. You wouldn’t have been free to be you. Your choice would have been to hide or to be persecuted. Or killed. Remember that when you think this is stupid.”

She swallowed thickly and walked a few feet away, closing her eyes against the tears, chest aching horribly. She needed to get it together. Falling apart wasn’t an option. Later, she reminded herself again. Not now, not when she could sense others coming—to also pay their respects and remember.

A soft caress on her cheek and a sweet smell pulled her out of her thoughts. She opened her eyes to find a bright daisy hovering in the air in front of her. She turned her head to watch as her eldest daughter, hand outstretched, lower lip caught between her teeth, manipulate the flower until it was tucked behind her mother’s ear.

“I’m sorry.”

“I know.”


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn Cease | Kris Norris | Siobhan Muir

July Song Fic – “A Mháire Bhruinneal” by Susan McKeown

Today’s Song Fic is inspired by “A Mháire Bhruinneal” by Susan McKeown.

I adore this song, but decided to write someone who didn’t care for this type of music… It got a bit heated. Rowr.

Saturday night. Hot as fuck. Ass going numb on the wooden bench. Mosquitos out for his blood. Too many freaking people around—and the smell? Beer, sweat and too much Axe body spray. Lovely. Music—Irish music, which he didn’t even like, for fuck’s sake—filling his ears.

Christ, why? Why did he do this to himself?

Bran didn’t even have the excuse of his sister dragging him here as he’d had the night before…and the weekend before. Oh, she would have—she followed most of the folk bands around the state to festivals and faires—but she’d had to work.

And, instead of taking his friends up on a couple drinks at the sports bar or spending the evening at home, Bran had gotten in his car to drive an hour and a half for another night of lively music that made him grit his teeth, being jostled by too many freaking people, and expensive, watered-down beer in plastic cups.

Why?

He sighed then sipped his beer, cringing when the now piss warm liquid passed his lips. He fought the urge to spit it back into the cup. Barely. He stood, edged around people to one of the trash bins and chucked the drink in. He stood a moment, scanning the crowd, distracted enough that he jolted violently, knee knocking the bin a few inches, when a hand landed on his shoulder.

He spun around and found his gaze caught by amused blue eyes. His breath caught, and without a thought, he nodded when the dark-haired man beside him jerked his head to the side.

He followed the man—Thomas…brother of the girl currently singing on stage—through the labyrinth of tents, stalls and trailers, biting his lip as he watched the sway of narrow hips and a truly spectacular ass. Bran flexed his fingers… Christ that ass.

Ten minutes later, Bran had his answer. His back shoved against the hard metal of one of the trailers, his pants shoved past his hips and his hands buried in Thomas’ thick hair. Thomas’ hand—large and hot and deliciously calloused—was wrapped around both their cocks, stroking slow and maddeningly. His lips smoothed over Bran’s neck as Thomas pressed words and encouragements into the sweat-slick skin.

“That’s it, love,” he crooned, twisting around the cockheads in his grasp, pulling a gut-wrenching moan from Bran. “Come on, wanna feel you lose it… Love the sounds you make. Can’t wait to fuck you proper. You’d like that, yeah? My fat cock splitting you open? Hmmm?”

Bran opened his mouth, but all that escaped was garbled nonsense as Thomas sped up his strokes.

“Come back to my room after, Bran?” he murmured, nipping at the sensitive skin behind Bran’s ear. “Need more. More than just hands and cocks in the shadows… Stay the night. Fuck you good and proper. Fuck you through the bloody mattress…all…fucking…night.”

With a cry, Bran came hard, head falling back and thunking against the trailers. Thomas stroked a few more times then, shout muffled in Bran’s neck, came as well.

Bran shifted, dropping his head forward to rest his forehead on Thomas’ shoulder, and tried to catch his breath. His heart stuttered as soft gentle kisses peppered his neck, his jaw. Then, Thomas took his mouth—confidently but so fucking sweetly.

Yeah, Bran had his answer. Why did he do this to himself? One word—Thomas.


Bronwyn | Kris | Sarah

Wednesday Randomness: Promptly Penned #30

It’s time for another Promptly Penned post. We’re all given the same prompt and see where it takes us. The prompt itself is in CAPS in the post.

Cam braced his hands on the edge of the counter, leaning heavily, and let his head fall forward. Fuck, he hurt. Pain thrummed through his body with each heavy breath. Though, it was definitely better—marginally, but better—than when he first got home. One benefit of what the assholes had done to him was he seemed to heal much faster, now.

He huffed a humorless laugh, then groaned at the sharp stab of pain along his middle. Putting a positive spin on being abducted and experimented on for months was a bit much, even for him. Even if he was trying to do good with what they’d done to him, with the abilities he now had.

Straightening, he bit back another groan and moved to the freezer to grab an ice pack. Holding it tight against his side, he walked into the living room, where his friends were still talking loudly what had gone down that night.

Before he could join the conversation, the front door flew open, banging against the wall. Josh, Mat and Jazz all jumped to their feet as James strode into the room and slammed the door behind him.

James, who was Cam’s ex.

James, who was a thief. Not that Cam had known that…until it was too late.

A thief who had walked away from Cameron without a word, and now, had resurfaced, determined to step back into Cam’s life.

“What the fuck were you thinking, Cameron?” James said slowly and deliberately.

“Jamie,” Cam breathed.

“What the fuck are you thinking?” Mat snapped, stepping towards James. “You can’t just come busting in here!”

“Looks like I can,” James threw in his direction before turning back to Cam. “Are you trying to get yourself killed?”

Cam shook his head. “No, I—”

“You need to leave,” Josh said, hand on Mat’s arm, keeping him from moving any closer to James. “You’re not wanted here. You aren’t part of this.”

“Part of this? Part of this?” James’ voice rose. “You’re damned right I’m not part of this. This being the stupidest damned thing I’ve ever fucking seen.”

“I said—” Josh started.

“It’s bad enough you’re out trolling the streets, looking for trouble,” James continued, speaking over the other man, eyes intense and locked on Cam. “Now, you have these idiots, what? Listening to a police scanner,” he gestured toward the equipment on the counter, “and calling you on your fucking cell to tell you where to go for even more trouble? Not a smart way to do this, Cameron.”

Cam tried really, really fucking hard to suppress the shiver that traveled his spine. Christ, the man’s voice…even when he was all disapproving and lecturing. All right, maybe especially because he was, which made Cam a sick, sick man.

“If you insist on continuing with this…mission of yours, you need to be smarter about it. And this crew?” He gestured at Cam’s friends. “Fuck, it’s like you woke up and said, ‘OH, WELL, THE BEST OF THE BEST WEREN’T AVAILABLE…SO WE GOT THE BEST OF THE MEDIOCRE,’ and just ran with it.”

“Fuck you. Like we give a shit about your opinion,” Mat sneered. “You’re a criminal.”

James laughed—a short bitter sound. “Never claimed otherwise, but what you’re doing—or rather what he’s out there doing while you sit here with your thumbs up your asses and safe—is vigilantism, which is… Hmmm, what’s the word? Oh, right…illegal. And could you tell the class what people who do illegal things are called? No? Nothing? That would be criminals, you fuckwit.”

“It’s totally different!” Jazz protested, seeming to finally come of the state of shock she’d been in since James arrived. “We’re… Cam’s helping people.”

“Still illegal, sweetheart,” he snapped. “Get it through your thick skulls—this isn’t some comic book or action flick; Cameron is not some indestructible superhero.”

“Enough,” Cam pleaded, head pounding. When the bickering continued, he raised his voice. “Enough!” He sighed as all eyes turned to him then gestured to his friends. “You guys can head on home. Obviously, we’re done for tonight; I’ll talk to you tomorrow.”

Mat gaped. “You can’t be serious!”

“We’re not leaving you alone with him,” Jazz added.

Cam rolled his eyes. “Yeah, you are. He’s not going to hurt me, and we clearly need to talk.”

James just moved over to lean against the wall, crossed his arms and smirked as Cam guided the protesting trio to the door. Once they were gone, Cam turned, jolting when he came face to face with James.

“You can’t—”

“Shhh.” James lifted a hand and gingerly touched Cam’s cheekbone. “Christ, look at you.”

“It’s not as bad as it looks.”

“And your ribs?” He pulled Cam’s hand and the icepack away before lifting the hem of Cam’s shirt. “Fuck.”

Cam looked down and cringed at the mottled black and blue marring his skin. Then gasped as James’ fingertips moved along his side, prodding gently.

“Don’t think any are broken,” he murmured, resting his palm hotly over the bruising and meeting Cam’s gaze. “You really can’t keep doing this, babe.”

Heart aching at the plea in the other man’s voice, Cam swallowed thickly. “I already told you, I need to do this. Some good has to come out of what happened to me.”

James inhaled deeply then brought his head down, resting his forehead against Cam’s. “Okay.”

“Okay?” Cam knew his friends would be yelling at him, right about now, about how the man had lied—by omission, but it still counted—and left him, breaking his heart. How his approval wasn’t something Cam needed. But despite all that, he found himself wanting it, anyway. And that wasn’t something he was going to examine. At least not tonight.

“Okay,” James said firmly, sliding his hand around to rest on the small of Cam’s back. “But not like this, anymore. You’re going to end up hurt again—or worse—and I can’t…I can’t let that happen. Let me help you.”

Mind racing, wondering how James could help, Cam quit fighting himself and slide his arms around James’ waist and leaned into him.

“Let me help keep you safe,” James whispered against Cam’s temple, lips tickling. “Please, babe.”

Closing his eyes, Cam gave the only answer he could when it came to James.

“Yes.”


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn Cease | Siobhan Muir

Wednesday Randomness: Promptly Penned #26

It’s time for another Promptly Penned post. We’re all given the same prompt and see where it takes it. The prompt itself is in italics in the post (normally I bold but apparently that isn’t showing up anymore. 🙁 )

Willa should have known better. She really, really should have. She’d thought throwing a profile up on the dating site would help her meet some guys here. New in town, she’d been lonely. Her job was going all right, she supposed, but she wasn’t really connecting with anyone. Not even on a friendly level, let alone on a romantic one.

She knew some of it was because she was a bit…gun-shy when it came to opening up to anyone, whether they be potential friend or lover. And who could blame her? After the disaster of last time. She’d put herself out there, shared who and what she really was, and she’d lost everyone. And had basically been run out of town. Okay, there hadn’t exactly been flames and pitchforks, but the end result was the same.

So she’d started over, here, and after several months, she’d given in to impulse and had done a stupid thing. Not the stupidest, but definitely high on the list. She’d had more dates than she could keep track of – with dullards, jocks, pretty boys, aggressive asses… The variety had been there, for sure, but not in a good way. And tonight, was just another strike out. This time, a real creeper. Who grew creepier every freaking second. The only thing soothing her, at the moment, was he’d just walked her to her front door.

Not a smart move for the average woman, she supposed, letting a man she didn’t know bring her home, but – Willa ducked her head and smiled as she felt her magic swirl through her body – she was far from average.

“Thank you,” she said quietly, pulling her keys from her purse. She pressed her lips together, loath to lie and say she had a good time.

“Not going to invite me in,” Marcus said, lips quirking into a small smile.

She struggled not to sigh as she unlocked the door and pushed it open. It was a shame – he was quite handsome. If only his personality and the vibe he gave off so strongly matched his looks.

“Not after a first date,” she said quickly a

“Maybe after the next, then?”

The sigh couldn’t be held back, ths time. She didn’t want to be a bitch, but he couldn’t possibly think tonight had gone well, could he? Certainly not second-date well.

“I’m sorry, but -” She struggled to find a nice way to say no fucking way. “I don’t think we really connected, Marcus. Maybe you’ll have better luck with your next match.”

“Oh, I don’t think so.” He stepped forward, close enough she could feel his breath on her face. “Don’t think I’ll get luckier than I have tonight.”

Willa called her power, gasping when it didn’t answer, didn’t rise to her command. A cry followed as she was shoved backwards by an invisible force and slammed into the wall of her entry. Marcus stepped over the threshold and closed the door with a wave of his hand.

“Imagine my surprise when I walked into that restaurant and found someone with power as strong as yours.” He hummed happily. “Best match I’ve had yet.”

She shook her head, trying to clear it. “What?”

“Oh, don’t worry, sweet Willa,” he crooned, pressing against her and cupping her face, causing her to whimper slightly. “Shh, shhh, shhhhh. It’s okay. You don’t have to love me. That’s not what I want…though,” he smirked again, “I wouldn’t mind if you did.”

“Wh…wh…what do you want?” she managed to ask, cold settling over her as fear gripped her entire being.

“Your life, your magic… Not to put to fine a point on it, your everything.”


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn Cease | Kris Norris
Paige Prince | Siobhan Muir

March 2018 Photo Flash Fiction – “A Reminder”

Hello, all.

It’s time for March’s Photo Flash Fic. It’s a short one from me this month. Set within the world of my serial, Your Lies (feel free to follow the link and read the chapters that are up and the flash fic I’ve written in this world already.) I’ve revisited Kyle, who is the heroine’s bestie though they haven’t seen each other in a while.

“Why don’t you just get that fixed?”

I glanced up from the map and papers I’d been studying. Simmons, the newest recruit the powers that be had saddled me with, pointed at the cracked window.

“Or, fix it yourself? You know…” She wiggled her fingers dramatically. “You’re powerful enough to do it with little effort.”

I rolled my eyes. “Focus. We need to get through this information and—”

“Man, everyone’s heard about you. How quickly you moved up the ranks, the things you can do. I can’t believe they assigned me to you. Everyone is jealous as fuck, let me tell you.”

“Simmons,” I snapped, hands clenched on the table.

“Oh, you can call me Layla,” she said cheerfully. “Is our next assignment at the university? I heard some messed up stuff is happening there. I mean, Maddock Roberts is apparently hooking up with a magic user or a Sympathizer. Don’t know if I believe that… Who would be stupid enough to get involved with the poster boy of the anti-magic crowd?

Delia’s face flashed in my mind, and my magic surged, pushed outward with the force of my anger.

“Anyone who is anyone knows who he is so it’s not like she could claim ignorance. Do you think it’s true? Do you think she’s some kind of do-gooder, trying to reform h— Uh, what’s happening?”

Her face paled as she looked around the room. Everything around us shook—the table skittered across the floor, the raggedy couch and chairs did the same, and the door rattled on its hinges. And the window—the fucking window that started her incessant chattering… The cracks lengthened, webbing out until they hit the frame.

“It’s a reminder,” I bit out, motioning toward it with my chin.

“What does it remind you of?” she said in a near whisper as she stared at the window, wide-eyed.

“Not for me. For everyone else.” I braced my hands on the table, quelling its movement as I leaned forward and waited for her to turn her gaze back toward me. “A reminder to stay focused and not to piss me off. And, Simmons,” I said slowly, “listening to mindless gossip and speculating on something you have no knowledge of…pisses me off.”

“I’m sor-sorry, sir,” she stammered. “It won’t happen again.”

I drew my power back inside and nodded. “See that it doesn’t. Now, let’s get through this new information, shall we?”


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn Cease | Kris Norris

February Song Fic – “Angel With a Shotgun” by The Cab

**apologies for the late posting…don’t know what happened when I scheduled this…
it didn’t post when I set it to. 🙁 **

Time for February’s song flash fic. This month’s song is “Angel With a Shotgun” by the Cab. Have a listen if you like:

I love this song, and have had something simmering about it since we chose songs for the year. I’m going to visit the world of my Albion’s Circle series for this one.

I’ve also written other flash fiction set in this world, if you’d like to have a read. 🙂

“Merlin’s Cave”
“The Hammers Coming Down”
“I Will Possess Your Heart”
“The Coldness”
“Ever The Same”
“Ghosts That We Knew”
Promptly Penned #20 – “One Last Time”
“Ghost”

Hope you enjoy this one, and what the others have come up with for “Angel With a Shotgun”.


~Merlin~

I slowly walked down the stairs. I’d slept longer than I planned. Hell, I hadn’t planned on sleeping at all until Arthur pushed his way into my room and forced me. I’d slept long and hard—if I didn’t know better, I’d suspect Arthur had magic and used a spell on me. I’d clearly needed the rest. Physically, I felt better than I had in a while, and more importantly, my mind was well clearer.

Not that I’d say or admit anything to Arthur. That would just get me his patented smug, knowing look—his fucking royalty bleeding through—and more fussing in the future.

I followed the voices through the lower level to the kitchen. I stopped in the doorway, leaning a shoulder against the jamb, and bit back a sigh.

Not everyone was here—the newer members of our group were absent, as were some of the knights. I swallowed thickly as the face of one knight who would not join us again in this life filled my mind. Cursing inwardly, I shoved that aside, unwilling to spiral down that hole. Not now.

Arthur, Owain, and Lancelot sat at the large table, Owain pointing out something on his laptop screen to the others. Galahad and Will stood at the stove, playing grab-ass as they cooked. And Anna…my Anna was a few feet away, whisking eggs. I couldn’t see her face, but sadness radiated from her, and my heart ached. With the knowledge that I’d had a large part in bringing about that sadness. That more would come. It was inevitable. It always was.

The weight of responsibility, of duty, pressed down on me. The oppressive feeling all too familiar. It was an old friend, my constant for hundreds of years, for lifetimes. Only a handful of times had I shamefully wished it away. Those moments of weakness, when grief and despair and loneliness had taken their toll, never lasted long. Because I knew, I remembered, what I was fighting for.

Humanity.

The Circle was formed for that, after all. We vowed our lives—every one of them—to protect the world from Magical threat.

My friends.  Those I loved.

Arthur…the Circle…those who had bound themselves to us, to help us in our quest. Those I’d mourned again and again, and vowed to keep safe every time.

Her.

My Anna. Sweet Annwyl. I looked at her, heart aching still. Not with sadness, but with the depth of the love I had for this woman, the lengths I was willing to go to keep her safe and with me.

Then, slowly, she turned and met my gaze. And time stood still. It was only the two of us. She moved across the room and stopped in front of me. Eyes narrowed, she lifted her hands to cup my face and stared. Then, seemingly satisfied with what she saw, she nodded.

“Breakfast is almost ready,” she said softly, raising up on her toes.

I closed my eyes when her mouth pressed against mine. My magic pulsed and swelled…and rejoiced when hers answered, twisting and twining with mine, wrapping around the both of us.

“I love you,” I whispered.

“Hmmm,” she hummed, pulling back. “I know.”

Her smile took my breath away, as always. I’d stopped wondering long ago—so long ago, back in Camelot—if she’d ever stop having that effect on me. Anna and her magic would always overwhelm me, take my breath away, and make my heart ache. I accepted that more easily than any other fact of my life.

“I love you, too.” She held my gaze a moment longer than turned away, moving back to help her brother and Galahad finish with breakfast.

Yes, the weight still pressed down on me—the responsibility, the duty—and I had so much to do, but I knew what I was fighting for. I knew who I was fighting for. I would take all the weight, all the shit thrown at me, all the shameful moments I had to bear for what I had here. For her.


Bronwyn Green | Kris Norris | Siobhan Muir

Wednesday Randomness: Promptly Penned #25

**Trigger Warning: There is description of sexual assault that is stopped.
If that is something that would bother you, please don’t read further**

Hello, happy Wednesday, all!

It’s time for a Promptly Penned flash fic. The prompt, as always will be in bold within the story itself. Hope you enjoy!


Amelia shivered as the bus pulled noisily away from the stop. She tugged her coat more closely around her and began walking toward her house. It was more than the cold affecting her, though she tried not to think about it. About how, for weeks, she’d felt eyes on her all the time. About the monsters in the shadows. The ones her mother had warned her about for as long as she could remember—the beasts that stalked relentlessly, that stole people away, people who were foolishly unaware of their surroundings.

Never be unaware, Amelia. Always keep your eyes open, know what is around you. Don’t let them ever take you by surprise, my girl. Never ever.

She’d thought her mother crazy, even as she nodded and promised to be careful and aware of her surroundings. But these past weeks…she wondered if, perhaps, her mother had been right about the monsters all along. Or maybe this was the beginning, the start of Amelia’s descent into madness.

“Mel!”

She jolted at the shout then quickened her pace. What was wrong with her? There were no monsters. Not the kind Mom believed in, at least. If Amelia had felt watched, he was the reason why.

“Mel, wait up! Please, just…just… Would you just listen to me?”

Trent McKay.

She’d made the colossal mistake of agreeing to go out with the man and hadn’t been able to shake him since. After one date, she had known they weren’t right for each other, but Trent obviously thought otherwise. He constantly called, texted, and emailed. He made a habit of posting on her social media pages, embarrassingly shoving his way into conversations. Even though she’d bumped into him a few times while out with friends, she comforted herself with the fact that he didn’t know where she lived. She’d insisted on meeting him at the restaurant for that first and only date. But now…now, in the darkening night on the nearly deserted street near her home, she feared that was no longer true. He’d been following her. Stalking her.

A large hand wrapped around her biceps and yanked her to a stop.

“Leave me alone,” she cried, struggling to pull free, but the grip holding her just tightened.

“Not until you listen!”

The world spun, and with a thud, he had her back against the wall of the building she’d been walking past. Heart racing, painful in her chest, Amelia stared into wide wild brown eyes.

“Trent, you need to leave me alone,” she said slowly, even as her voice trembled and a cold sweat broke out all over her body.

“No, no, no, you don’t understand,” he shouted, shaking her, knocking her head off the brick behind her.

“Stop it,” she cried, pain ricocheting through her skull, her vision wavering.

“You just don’t see it. But you will.”

“See what?” She pushed at him, again and again, as much as she could, given how he held her, but he didn’t budge.

“You and I belong together.” He grinned madly. “And I’m going to show you.”

Sour fear curdled on her tongue as Trent pressed closer, grinding his hardness against her hip.

“Stop fighting me, Mel. This is right; this is meant to be.”

“No.” She shook her aching head, pushing and hitting him as hard she could.

Suddenly, his weight pressed her to the wall hard, and one of his hands left her arm. Then, a glint of metal drew her attention. Her mouth went dry, and heart stuttering, she froze.

“I don’t want to hurt you, Mel,” he said, his mouth close to hers, breath sweeping hotly over her face. “But I will…I will if it will make you understand.”

Eyes glued to the knife he now held, Amelia asked, “Why? Why are you doing this?”

“Because I love you,” he said simply. “You belong to me.”

“We went on one date!” she cried.

“Yes,” he said, bringing the knife to her throat, reaching between them with his other hand. “That’s all it took for me to know.”

Her breathing quickened as his fingers fumbled with the button of her jeans. This couldn’t be happening. It just couldn’t. Spots danced in her sight, and her fingers tingled. Shit, she was hyperventilating. But she couldn’t slow her breathing, couldn’t…

“That’s right,” Trent murmured, pulling down her zipper. “Don’t fight me.”

“Please don’t,” she whimpered, blackness edging out her vision.

“You’ll love me. You’ll see. You—”

Amelia legs gave out, and, as she slid to the ground, free of Trent’s oppressive weight, a scream echoing around her. Trent’s scream.

She blinked rapidly, trying to clear her vision, trying to see what the hell was happening. And then, she wished she hadn’t.

Monsters. Huge animals she couldn’t have imagined if she tried. Two of them hauled Trent away from her, their big muzzles clamped on his arms, teeth deep in his flesh, blood staining the fur around their mouths. The man kicked and screamed as they dragged him into the alley across the street. Suddenly, the screams stopped, and silence fell all around her.

Leaning heavily on the wall behind her, Amelia pushed to her feet. Stomach churning, she looked toward the alley, and bit back a scream of her own.

A man stood in a circle of light cast by one of the street lamps. He was huge—tall and broad—with dark messy hair, and his eyes… His eyes glowed red in the night as he stared at her. He held her gaze as he moved back, out of the light and into the shadows.

Amelia choked back a sob and stumbled forward. She had to get home. Away from Trent, away from the monsters. Quicker and quicker, she moved, tripping over her feet every time she looked back. She couldn’t help it, though. She could still feel eyes on her, watching her, following her.

She cried out in relief as she hurried up the short walk to her house. She fumbled the keys from her pocket, nearly dropping them before she could fit the right one in the lock. Shaking, she managed to unlock and push open the door. After stepping over the threshold, she stopped, and unable to help herself, she turned, knuckles whitening from her grip on the door.

There he was. The huge man with his glowing eyes. He stood across the street, feet braced apart, hands behind his back. Amelia blinked as her vision again blurred, then sharpened impossibly. The scents around her—the musty leaves on the ground, the trash in the cans at the curb, and him, all heat and fur?—swamped her senses. Her mouth watered, and her gums ached. Then, in an instant, all of that faded—as if it had never happened.

The man held her gaze as he bent forward in a small bow. And, as he straightened and grinned at her with impossibly sharp teeth, he once again melted back into the shadows.

Somehow, the fact he had followed her and knew where she lived didn’t matter. She felt an odd connection with him. She shook her head at the absurdity, but she couldn’t help it. Everything was different now. Her life was forever changed, now she’d learned the monsters were protecting her.


Bronwyn Green | Gwendolyn CeaseKris Norris | Siobhan Muir