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I’m known for my animal characters, so here are excerpts:
Ghost Seer, contemporary paranormal romance, pg. 11:
Denver, Colorado, the same morning
I like the way you smell. I’m staying, the figment of her imagination, a “ghost” dog, said. It—he?—sat on the end of her bed.
“No,” Clare Cermak whispered as she slapped a palm down on her buzzing alarm clock. She stared at him in shock. Well, through him. He didn’t have a touch of color.
“This can’t be happening,” she muttered. She was on her third day of denial of ghosts, but that still worked for her. A year might work for her. Forever.
She closed her eyes and scooted under the sheet.
Coldness touched her shoulder, and her eyelids sprang open.
The Labrador looked at her with big, dark gray eyes that had been chocolate brown when he was alive. He was too close up and far too personal.
She gulped. “You aren’t—weren’t—even my dog, Enzo.” He’d been her weird great-aunt Sandra’s. Sandra, who said she saw ghosts and helped them “transition.” Who’d recently made her own transition, and had bypassed Clare’s parents and brother and made Clare the sole heir of her estate, leaving Clare a fortune.
Yes, there was family money and trusts, but Sandra had added to it. Who knew pretending to talk to ghosts was so lucrative?
I’m your dog now. Enzo’s tongue lolled as he gave her a too-perky doggie grin. We should play, too.
“I don’t believe this.” She sat up, hardening her heart against large, dark eyes and wagging tail. Hardening her expression. “I don’t believe in you. In any . . . ghosts.” Though something was wrong with her vision, because she’d begun to “see” gray and white and shadowy and transparent images of people. She’d made a doctor’s appointment for extensive testing.
Now a shadow was “talking” to her in her head.
That’s all right. I believe in you! Enzo’s imaginary tongue shot out and swiped at her face . . . and she felt a clammy touch on her cheek. Enough that she reared back and banged her head on the curved wood of her sleigh bed.
This invasion of the visions right here in her home and her own bedroom was new and unwelcome. Chicago, where her aunt had lived, was one thing. Right here . . . not at all good.
But you hear me, right? Huh, huh? I looove you, Clare. Always liked when you came. You brought treats. Do you have treats here? Enzo bounded off her bed, leaving no sign he’d been there, and whisked straight through her closed and solid bedroom door.
“I’m seeing things,” she said weakly.
The spectral dog loped back into the room, drool dripping. Again Clare stared. The shiny droplets vanished before they hit her rug. Which was weird.
The whole thing was weird.
She’d turned weird.
You have no treats, Enzo said, giving her the big puppy eyes.
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The original, the one and only Zanth from HeartMate, fantasy romance set on Celta. T’Ash, blacksmith and jeweler, has rolled Divination Dice he made and found that he should be meeting his HeartMate that day when Zanth, his Familiar animal companion cat strolls in, page 4:
Zanth, T’Ash’s cat and Familiar, strolled in. Fish again, he projected telepathically to T’Ash. He carried his muscular fighter’s body with grace. He’d attached himself to the child, Rand Ash, the first week in Downwind. The cat had announced he was Rand’s Fam. T’Ash’s boyhood crate in the slum had been barely big enough for them both. Zanth had made the move into the new, expensive T’Ash Residence as if it were his due, though he looked every inch the Downwind tough. The cat was huge, two-thirds of a meter long. Irregular black blotches dominated his white fur.
A red tongue caught a stray bit of food from his whiskers. You hear? Fish again! Oily. Me not like and don’t want any more.
Zanth’s comment grounded T’Ash. “I’ll speak to the chef.”
Zanth went to the workbench and stared up at the necklace. That thing. From long ago. His pink nose wrinkled. He opened his muzzle and curled his tongue to use his sixth sense—a combination of smell-taste. Don’t like it. It’s feral you. Too much you and not enough Me. Take it away.
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And my latest Fam, a cheerfully feral cat ready to become a Fam, Ratkiller! From Heart Fire.
Stooopppp! Let me IN! screeched a mental voice.
Reacting instinctively, Tiana snapped, “Stop the vehicle immediately.”
The glider whooped a warning to others, jerked still, deployed the landing brackets, and rocked back and forth on them.
Windooww! yelled something. Tiana turned toward the sound and jolted as something dark and furry showed beyond the tinted window.
“What are yo—” she began, but saw a whippy cat tail. All right. She commanded, “Thin the back windows to air.”
The spell took hold, and the furry animal bolted through, landing close to her. She put out a hand to keep the cat from tumbling onto her and thought she saw spittle flying toward her, too.
Yay! Look at Me! I am with My FamWoman! I have CATCHED her!
Tiana stared at the brindled cat of drab shades of brown and gray. One of his ears was half gone. Obviously not a pampered Fam, but a feral.
He smiled ingratiatingly, showing a broken fang, too, and then his loud and rumbling purr filled the glider.
“FamWoman?” Tiana asked faintly.
His head bobbed. A white scar showed the length of his head and disappeared into the fur near his neck. I am your Fam.
“Do you even know who I am?”
The Fam snorted. Acourse I do. You are the priestess who lives in the secret place that welcomes the really scared or sad.
Her heart thudded and her mouth dried. That was true.
You are not the Healer who lives there and who has a raccoon Fam. The tom lifted a paw and flicked it as if dismissing such a creature. But Tiana’s sister’s Fam was young and pretty, especially compared to this one.
So was everyone else’s Fam.
Light-green eyes fixed on hers. I am a good fighter. Like you.
He preened and turned his head and licked a mat by his shoulder. We will be good together. I have been smelling you for the last two weeks, and knew I had to find you.
That simply appalled Tiana. “Smelling me?”
He sniffed. Yes. You are my FamWoman.
Well, he had no doubt about that.
“I take it you haven’t come from GreatLady Danith D’Ash’s Fam Adoption Rooms.”
The tom made a disgusted noise. Bunch of soft pussies.
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May you enjoy all the worlds you visit, especially those I craft for the satisfaction of all of us. Grab your favorite beverage and take a look.
I hope you enjoy visiting with me!