Saturday, April 22, 2017

Free Serial Romance: Wolf Dreams by Regina Paul, Part 3

I slump back down on my bed and watch the clock as it goes from 3:00 am to 3:01 am. What is happening to me, what are these strange dreams because now I'm not just dreaming of the girl and her wolves, but terrifying creatures that remind me of Iroquois false face masks come to life. Something is changing in my dreamscape, the current dream was not just a nightmare, and I know this deep down inside. But how is this even possible? Dreams are just that dreams, aren't they?

I throw one arm over my closed eyes. Thank God, it's early on a Saturday morning, and I have no work and no classes. I can sleep in, get up when I want and study when I want. Heck, I might even go and see a movie, no horror though! 

I turn over and reaching out I make sure the alarm isn't set, I don't want to wake up at 5:00 am later on. Then I cuddle back down into my warm blankets and fortunately I easily fall back asleep.


What feels like seconds later, my eyes pop open. Bright sunlight nearly blinds me, as my senses are assaulted by the scents of hundreds of wild flowers. When my eyes finally adjust to the bright light I see that I am sitting in a field full of wild flowers, some of whose stalks are as tall as the top of my head. 

"I've been waiting for you." 

My head whips around so fast I can hear the bones in my neck crack and whiplash pain shoots down one side. 

"Fuck that hurts!" I groan, my attention has been taken off the soulful voice. That is until gentle fingers pluck the muscles on the side with whiplash, and the pain begins to subside. 

"I didn't mean to startle you." 

I still can't see her, but I'm pretty sure who it is, especially when two wolves come romping into the wild flower field. Strangely I am not afraid of them. One of them plops down and puts his head in my lap, at least I think it's a him, before the other swipes one side of my face with his rough tongue before sitting down and cocking his head to one side as if to say, "Well aren't you going to pet me?"

I laugh, while they may be wolves, they're acting like great big puppies.

A slender hand reaches over my shoulder and begins scratching behind the ear of the wolf who is sitting in front of me. The wolf lets out a low whine of pleasure. "This is Pokey." 

"Pokey?" I ask, I think that is a pretty ridiculous name for a wild wolf, but maybe she knows something I don't.

"Yes. She is always sticking her nose where it doesn't belong, hence the name Pokey."

"Ah." I say, as if it makes perfect sense.

"And this is my Darius, he's the Alpha wolf." She says, and I guess that explains why the wolf whose head is in my lap, and who has the most beautiful gold eyes I've ever seen has the majestic name of Darius. 

I smile down at the wolf in my lap, "Hello, Darius." I say, gently scratching the top of his head and around his ears. He sighs, and closes his eyes.

Just so Pokey won't feel slighted I lean forward holding my hand out so she can smell it. She licks my fingers and taking that as a sign  that we are friends, I rub my hand under her chin and along her chest. She lifts her head back and gives what I can only surmise is a little happy doggy groan. 

The girl with me, laughs. "You keep doing that, and they're going to leave me for you." She teases.

"I very much doubt that." I smile. She is still behind me and I cannot see her face, but her voice calms me.

"There, your neck should be better now." She removes her hand from where she continued to massage the pain away. 

"It is, thank you."

"You're welcome." I feel her move around me until she is sitting in front of me next to Pokey. "And I am Sarah." She holds out one hand to me and I take it, squeezing it gently. She is even more beautiful in person than in my dreams. Raven hair cascading over her shoulders and down her arms, silver eyes and blood red lips. She is like something out of my most erotic fantasies. She is wearing a black and white corset dress that pushes up her breasts and creates some of the most wonderful cleavage I've ever seen. To top it off, she has a red cape over the ensemble. On her legs are white stockings and finally black flats with some kind of small silver buckles that have beautiful round filigree carved into them.

"It was very brave of you to confront him, but I want you to promise me you will never do so again." 

I laugh nervously, I didn't confront him the first time. "Are you talking about the false face man in the dark forest?"

"Yes. He's dangerous and I don't want you to get hurt. Promise me you won't confront him again." 

"Sarah, I didn't confront him the first time. I'm not sure why you think that." As much as I wanted to keep touching her, I drop her hand, slightly irritated she would think I would put myself into what had clearly been great danger if her demeanor was anything to go by.

"You didn't?" She seems surprised. "But I thought..." She shakes her head. 

"You thought what?" I ask belligerently. 

"That you were the one. Well, damn. That is that then." She moves as though she is going to stand. Not having any idea what is going on I grab her hand again.

"Hey wait a minute. Sarah, what do you mean the one? What are you talking about?"

"There's just no help for it then." She tries to shake my hand off, but though I'm small, I'm stronger than I look.

"Uh, uh. I want some answers Sarah." I looked deeply into her eyes and I can see she is wavering. "Listen, I've dreamed of you and your wolves every day of my life for the last twenty years, there has to be a reason, so tell me."

"You have?" Her eyes blaze with the fires of hope.

"Yes, nearly every night. Last night was the first time the dream was different. I didn't consciously seek out the false face. I just found myself there. Who is he, and why did I dream of him?"

"His name is Ciprian, and he's evil as they come." She said in a voice devoid of emotion though she held my hand so tightly I heard one knuckle crack. "I don't know why you would dream of him, but you wouldn't be the first person he used dreams to trap. You need to guard your dreams better."

I could scarcely believe I was talking to the girl from my dreams in a dream as though I were not dreaming right now this very second. "How do I guard my dreams?"

"You don't know how?" 

"Not really no. You see where I come from dreams aren't real, and while some people believe dreams have meaning, most do not believe they are anything more than the subconscious hashing out the problems of the day while we sleep."

"Oh, that is a very dangerous belief to have. Dreams are real, Leilani, and they are often doorways to other realms."

"I believe you, I'm dreaming right now you know."

"You believe this is a dream?"

"I know it is, though it's very real."

Sarah shook her head. "Dear, dear Leilani, this is much more than a dream. You have traveled into another realm and become caught up in a spider web of lies created by Ciprian. He is toying with you and me." 

"Stop speaking in riddles, what do you mean?" 

Sarah took a deep breath. "I am cursed." She whispered.

"Cursed like in the fairytales?"

"Goddess, you're from the human world, you're human!" Sarah sounds utterly shocked.

"Well, yeah. What's so bad about that?"

Sarah frames my face with soft hands. She brings her face even closer to mine. "Dear, dear Leilani, this realm is not safe for humans.You have been dreaming and visiting the realm of the Fae your entire life if you what you tell me is true, and I have no reason not to believe you. Why Ciprian would involve a human in our battle I do not know, but you must return to your world now. You cannot dream of me anymore beautiful Leilani." She leans into me and puts her soft lips against mine, "Sweet Leilani." She whispers against my lips. 

I crave to taste her breath and as though she hears my thoughts she opens her lips slightly and I swipe just inside with my tongue. She is the one who is sweet. I don't want to leave her. She pulls back from me.

"Dear one, if only we had time for more. I would do such wicked lovely things to you were I not cursed. If only you were not human. I believed you were Fae, or maybe Elven, but that was one of Ciprian's tricks. I have watched you as you have watched me. If you do not heed my words, he will trap you in this realm forever, and you will share my curse. You must wake up now, Leilani, and never return to this place. Wake dear one, wake never to dream of me again. Be safe, love." The words whisper against my lips.

I try to hold onto her, the wolves, a wild flower stem, anything, but it all becomes as smoke and as I begin to wake I hear an angry growl. Then I open my eyes to the plain cream of the walls of my bedroom. I know I will not take Sarah's advice. I cannot leave her to her curse as she wishes. I will have to find some way to go to the realm of the Fae for real, but I'm scared. What if I can't find a way to help her though? 

No one will believe me if I ask for help. Humans no longer believe in fairytales, or the Fae. 

A tear tracks down my face to fall on my pillow. 

How am I going to help Sarah? Because I know I have to try.

(c) Copyright 2017 by Regina Paul. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, March 13, 2017

A Good Year by Tara Fox Hall Author Spotlight...


There's no Heaven . like Hell.

Faced with losing Pandora Productions as well as her best friend Rebecca to the smarmy Paul, savvy film executive Debbie makes a pact with the demon Shaker, agreeing to bind herself to him as his human master in return for killing Paul and securing Pandora’s future. Yet even as Pandora gains accolades and renown, Debbie’s strong resolve begins to crumble under the weight of her actions. And the pleasure she finds in Shaker’s arms is becoming more than sex.

Is Debbie doomed to lose her heart as well as her soul to a demon who has only been waiting for the chance to claim both?


“Mistress?” Shaker said, appearing beside her. “Do you want anything tonight, or would you prefer to be left alone?”
Debbie looked at him uneasily. Since his confession of murder, she had asked him most nights to leave her. At first, she’d been worried her commands would anger him, but Shaker just nodded each evening and disappeared.
There had been enough of intrigue. Debbie had too many unanswered questions. It was time she faced up to the truth. “I need answers to some questions, Shaker. And I need the truth.”
Shaker inclined his head amicably. “You have only to ask.”
“Did you do something to help with Dante?”
Shaker nodded. “He’s a slippery one, otherwise he’d have already met with a nasty accident like his dad. But I found it far easier to distract than destroy.” He leaned back against the doorway frame, making it creak in protest. “You’d be surprised how easy that is.”
“What did you do? Exact actions, Shaker.”
“Apologies, Mistress. I was not aware you wanted particulars. I appeared in front of his lover’s car on the road. She crashed it—predictably—and broke several bones. His father’s promotional company, Panko Promos, was in bankruptcy, as you know. That was not my doing, but I also arranged for the CEO to think he needed to flee to Mexico.” Shaker smiled. “Not hard to do, since it was his actions that had led to the financial woes. But I helped him decide to destroy all his files. With no backup, Paul is not going to be able to rally from that bankruptcy. Point of fact, that meeting you have tomorrow is not about promos for Pandora, but is an emissary from Dante asking for you to buy his company in an effort to save it—and his stock—from annihilation.”
Debbie stared at Shaker. “Panko isn’t coming to meet with me. The name is—”
“Paul tried renaming the company in an effort to avoid his creditors, but that failed,” Shaker interrupted. “I think you’ll find the company an asset, with the right person at the helm. And you can give it a new name. One with a bit more flair, perhaps?”
“That’s good,” Debbie said, feeling relieved at no mention of blood or dismemberment. “What else did you do? Pandora has had a run of good luck recently.”
“I’ve been busy of late,” Shaker intoned seriously, then laughed. “Mostly a few words in the right people’s ears. As you know I can appear and disappear anywhere practically at will. You have a good quality company, Mistress. Just a few notes left on a desk or whispered reminders during sleep are enough to get some good people interested in working with you, such as that actor Jett Black.”
“And the governmental red tape? I heard it’s no longer an issue.”
“The red tape I can’t take credit for. Giorgio did that on his own, with a few sexual favors. But as both parties enjoyed themselves from what I saw, I’m not sure it’s even immoral.”
“Did you instigate that?” Debbie asked.
“I don’t need to encourage lust in humans as a rule,” Shaker replied easily. “Your race manages that in spades on its own with no assistance from the demon world.”
“What about the new pictures Sheila procured? Or our new set artist Caroline, whose scenery is unbelievably real yet seems to cost us almost nothing? Or Saul—?
“You know, you really surprise me, Mistress. Wanting to know the gory details is usually strictly a male request—”
“Tell me the Goddamn truth, Shaker!” Debbie shouted angrily. “Did you have a hand in this?”
Shaker strode toward Debbie, his red eyes glowing in the dimness of the room. An evil feeling snaked its way through the room, making Debbie shiver.
“You know I did. I made sure there were no offers on those pictures. All but one buyer was persuaded solely with the evil feeling of my presence whenever they acted to procure the film rights…that same evil that is making you tremble now. Then I drove the one buyer who wouldn’t back down insane with images of torture every time he went to sleep.
“Caroline is an acquaintance who was looking for work. All you need to know is she has magical ability, which is where all those cost savings come from. She knows how to keep her head down and produce, and that is all you need to know.”
Debbie opened her mouth to speak, but Shaker took another step closer, silencing her.
“Hiring Saul was Manny’s doing, not mine. I killed him tonight, framing Manny for the deed easily.” Shaker laughed. “Manny will likely kill himself with a little prodding. Smile, Mistress. Your flop of a picture just got a hell of a lot more exclusive with a dead lead.”
Debbie sat down hard in her easy chair, her mind reeling. “Actors die every day of overdose or accidents on the set, Shaker. It’s not a
“Not one who was stabbed twenty-seven times in their billiard room with the broken end of a pool cue,” Shaker stated with a grin. “Not one active in seven separate charities with a loving trophy wife who was captured on film holding the ragged remains of her husband by her astute stepchild. He’ll be selling those pictures before dawn comes for a pile of money.” Shaker laughed. “The wife herself will likely contact you about donating all Saul’s proceeds from the film. In any case, Pandora will benefit immensely.”
“I never asked you to kill anyone,” Debbie said defensively. “I never asked you to—”
“You asked me to save your company, and I’ve done it,” Shaker shouted, the boom of his voice shaking the room like a small earthquake. He loomed over her. “What did you think was going to happen? I’m a demon out of Hell! What did you think I would do when you unleashed me on your enemies?”
“These are human beings—”
“Who matter as much as insects splattered on a windshield,” Shaker snarled. “Humans are just another species who think that they are superior to all others…a prevalent notion in all evolved creatures. They are not.” He stared down at her. “You are not superior to me, Mistress.”
Debbie looked up at him with tear-filled eyes. “But I am human. How do I know you won’t hurt me, too, Shaker?”

“Honestly?” he said gruffly, his expression softening. “You don’t. But the same could be said of any human man you know, Mistress.” He leaned in closer, tilting his head. “And I kiss better than most.”

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Author Bio:

Tara Fox Hall's writing credits include nonfiction, erotica, horror, suspense, action-adventure, children's stories, and contemporary and historical paranormal romance. She is the author of the paranormal fantasy Lash series and the paranormal romantic drama Promise Me series. Tara divides her free time unequally between writing novels and short stories, chainsawing firewood, caring for stray animals, sewing cat and dog beds for donation to animal shelters, and target practice. All of her published children's stories to date are free reads on

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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Free Serial Romance: Wolf Dreams by Regina Paul, Part 2

I'm dreaming again, I can always tell by the way I'm hyperaware of my surroundings. The forest around me is dark and quiet. Unlike a real forest, there are no sounds of animals rustling in the grasses or leaves, no hoot owls or scurrying of squirrels or chipmunks. The dark light is shading everything in blue and black. There are shadows everywhere I look, and I've never been so needy to hear even a hoot owl, or any form of life for that matter. But this forest is unlike any forest I've ever seen before, it's supernatural, maybe even preternatural, and alive in a way I can feel but can't quite explain. 

Just yesterday I was waking up from my usual dream about the girl and her wolf friends, going to my classes, and my work study job and just trying to forget about it all by living my very mundane life. I should have known better, because the dreams never leave me for long. 

This dream is different though. I've never been in this forest before, and I have no idea what is in store for me here. Suddenly out of the corner of my eye a shadow slips from behind a tree that is just a few feet from me. A very large tree and a very large shadow.  The shadow is over six feet tall and has the shape of a man.
"You cannot have her, human."

On some level I know he is talking about the girl, the one who I've been dreaming about for as long as I can remember and whose name I don't even know.

"I don't know what you're talking about." I say flatly. 

The shadow moves closer and I take another step back in self preservation.

"Oh, but I think you do, my pretty." 

As I watch, the shadow hunches over, nearly in half, and the voice which has been smooth and beautiful albiet sinister turns to a harsh gravel sound. I take another step back because I have no idea at this point what I'm dealing with. Usually at this juncture in a nightmare I wake up before I can see whatever it is. Not so this night. Instead the shadow lifts a hand, and speaks a word in a language I've never heard before. A round ball of light appears above what I can now see is a brown palm.  The palm lifts towards the creature's face. 

I want to run, wake up, something but it's as though my feet have grown roots deep into the forest floor and I cannot move. 

Run, it's not safe for you here! A soft female voice says in my mind.

The creature before me snarls as though he too hears the whispering voice.

"I knew if I brought you here, she'd come."

I stare as the ball of light reaches the creature's face and something from a horror film is revealed. The skin of it's face is twisted up in a caricature of a smiling snarl, long black matted hair frames the nightmare vision. 

I am beginning to get an idea of who he is talking about. Does he mean the girl and her wolves? And what does he mean by saying he brought me here?

Do not engage him, do not speak, it is a trap, you must wake up now Leilani! The same soft, strong voice whispers in my mind. 

How? I'm stuck.

No, I've freed you, wake up now, Leilani, before he traps us both!

My eyes fly open and I sit up with a gasp. When I turn my head to look at the clock it says 3:00 am.

(c) Copyright 2017 by Regina Paul. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Free Serial Romance: Wolf Dreams by Regina Paul, Part 1

I've been seeing her in my dreams for years, a beautiful girl with coal black hair and silver eyes. She always has two wolves with her. Are they guarding her? I don't know. Those eyes make me think she may be the more dangerous of the three. After all, who has silver eyes? Not any human I've ever met.Who is she? Again, I don't know. The dreams have been plaguing me for so long now that I don't know what to make of them. And the dreams are always the same. I'm walking in the woods, and in the distance I see her and her wolves. In the dreams they aren't walking, it's more like they suddenly take off and are in front of me. Her mercurial eyes look deeply into mine before she pulls one hand from behind her back and offers me an apple. The apple isn't a deep red color like most apples, it's almost like there's a milky white film covering the normal deep red of a red delicious apple.

She never speaks, never says anything just holds the apple out to me while her wolves look at something she is not paying attention to, and I cannot see. It's almost like a sadness enters her eyes when I don't immediately reach for the apple. Then I wake up, I always wake up.

Sweat coats my skin causing my t-shirt to stick to me in a sticky and uncomfortable fashion. The dream is always the same, and I've never been able to change it. I thought you were supposed to be able to change a lucid dream, and as aware as I always am in this dream I can never change it. Never move, never take the apple, never touch one of the wolves, never speak. I used to try and tell my parents about her, but they always said it was just a dream. But even now twenty years later I know it's not just a dream. I just don't know who she is and why she keeps appearing to me.

I push back the covers just wanting the stickiness off my skin and then I see the clock. Five am, the same damned time the damned dream wakes me up every morning. What is it about 5:00 am and this girl and her wolves. The funny thing is she always appears to be same age, early twenties, the same as me now. I wonder if she will always be that age. I wonder how I can change the dream, take the apple, pet the wolves, talk to her?

I groan as my alarm shrills ten minutes later. There's no help for it, I need to get up, shower and go to class. There are days that I hate the fact I decided to take classes in the Summer when all my friends are out partying and playing in the sun. Instead, I get to get up early go to class, go to my part-time job and then study. Ugh!

I pull myself into a sitting position and then walk into my tiny bathroom with it's tiny shower stall to turn on the water and give it a chance to heat. I chuck my t-shirt and panties and climb into the now hot shower. When I look to my little shower rack, I notice I'm nearly out of shower gel. One more thing to put on the list to buy. I sigh, sometimes being a grown up sucks. I liked it better when I could just add what I needed to my mom's grocery list and she'd buy it and I didn't have to worry about having enough money to make it through to my next work study paycheck or my next grocery clerk paycheck.

I squeeze a small amount of the gel onto my shower pouf, the strawberry scent mixing with the steam and engulfing me in the shower, sending me back to picking strawberries with my grandmother in her garden. Some days I miss Grams the most. I love my parents, but they don't understand me, not like Grams did.

I look at the clock high on the wall above the door and see that I've managed to spend fifteen minutes musing about shower gel, and Grams. I need to hurry up or I'm going to miss the bus that comes at and then where will I be? Late for my work study shift that's where. I scrub and rinse my body and hair in a hurry, and then shut off the blessed hot water and grab my favorite blue over-sized towel. I'd lucked out finding that one in a discount store. I hate small towels that barely cover you, and I really hate towels that don't wick the water off you. But that's a story for another day. Right now? Right now I need to get my shit together and get to the bus stop.

Copyright (c) 2017 by Regina Paul. All Rights Reserved.