Supernatural Fanfic: Part 2

Writing can suck sometimes. I love it, don’t get me wrong, but it can be freaking hard. From what I’ve learned in my twenty-something years, difficult things only get easier if you keep doing them, so that’s where this little fanfic comes in.

I know these characters – I’ve seen the show from start to finish a few times yeah I’m obsessed, so I figure it’s a good place to practice and have a little fun without showering myself in self-criticism. Let me know if you enjoy. Let me know if you don’t. I’m just thankful you stopped by.

Haven’t read Part 1? Here’s a link.

***

The sun was beginning to rise when he unlocked the door to the motel room, motioning for her to go in first. One wall was decorated haphazardly with newspaper clippings and printed articles. There was a picture of her and her sister, pixelated in black and white on cheap computer paper. It was a photo taken two years before for the local newspaper at the grand opening of their restaurant. In small towns like this that were slow to change, anything new was a big deal, bringing them a few minutes of fame.

That moment with her sister’s arm wrapped around her waist, the exhilaration of accomplishing their dream so obvious on their faces … none of it seemed real anymore. All she could see now was the empty eyes of her sister, tinged red with the mania of the monster that took over her body. The sound of the door shutting behind her shook her back to the present. Dean cleared his throat uncomfortably. Feeling awkward seemed to be his normal state of mind as far as she could tell.

“Have a seat,” he said, his voice rough. She looked to the small table by the only window in the room. It carried a layer of beer bottles and pizza boxes, so she pulled one of the chairs out and dragged it to the wall of horrors. She didn’t think she’d be able to sit, but she wanted it for backup just in case she needed a safe place to fall. She looked over the dozens of documents that Dean had pinned to the wall. The newspaper clippings told stories of animal attacks and missing people, and her heart sank. Were these all Sara’s doing? She shook her head. No. That beast hadn’t been Sara, not for a long time.

“Want a beer?,” Dean asked, opening the mini fridge. She heard the clinking of glass and turned to him, eyebrows raised.

“It’s,” she looked at the clock. “not even six AM.”

He shrugged, handing her a bottle anyway and twisting the cap on his own. “I’ve never thought that was a good argument.” He took a long drink and pulled the other chair over next to mine.

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“So,” he said, motioning for me to sit down. “Tell me about your sister.”

She looked to the photo of her and her sister and said, “Looks like you know plenty. Besides, I told you what I knew when I thought you were actually a cop.”

Dean had shown up on her doorstep flashing a fake badge two days ago asking about her missing sister, which was a huge red flag that he wasn’t who he said he was. The police had told her to stop harassing the department a while back, determining that Sara had taken off on her own accord. No need to pin her as a missing person, and no need to follow up. She set her suspicions aside and let him in, answering his questions about Sara, relieved that someone else seemed to sense foul play. At the time, she thought he might lead her to Sara, help bring her home safely. She’d been half right.

He looked up and his mouth turned down in an exaggerated frown as he went over their conversation. “Mmmhmm. She just up and poofed, taking a bag and some clothes with her.” He scratched his head and winced at whatever he was thinking. “Sounds to me like she wanted to leave. And nothing she did gave you the hint? No bad blood?” His tone was turning condescending, as if she were lying to him. As if she were an idiot.

“No,” she replied, heat rising in her own voice.

He didn’t seem to notice. “Okay, but something had to lead up to this, right? She didn’t mention being attacked? She didn’t act weird in the days leading up to her disappearance?”

“I already told you. No she didn’t.”

His eyes widened and he shook his head slightly and raised his hands in a gesture that said, that’s it?

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She ran her hands through her hair and stood, beginning to pace, trying to remember … anything. She had wracked her brain for months, but nothing Sara had done gave any clue that she was about to take off.

Ashley sat back down in a huff. “No, Dean. She was herself. I saw her almost every minute of every day. We worked together. We lived together. It would have been impossible for me not to know that something was going on. She was my sister. I knew her better than anyone.”

Dean nodded, not replying right away. Even those we thought we knew still had secrets. He sighed, bringing his hands hard against his thighs before standing.

“Well, if that’s all you got…”

She tilted her face back in an expression of surprised disgust. She opened her mouth to say something, but ended up just narrowing her eyes and letting her breath out in a huff.

“Look,” he said. “I can appreciate a healthy sense of denial. Sometimes it’s the only thing that will keep a person sane. But you wanted to come along on this, so I need you to get with the program or get out of my way.”

“What do you want me to say?”

“Something helpful would be nice,” he said, grabbing his keys and moving toward the door.

“Where are you going?” She followed him, and felt not a little like a lost puppy nipping at his heels.

He didn’t answer, just climbed into his sleek, black car and slammed the door. She hurriedly jumped in the passenger seat before he could take off without her. He didn’t object, just gave her an annoyed look before pulling out of the parking lot.

***

Denial? Denial? Ashley didn’t know what he expected her to say or do, but she was giving him all she knew, and he had the nerve to say she was in denial? She’d just torched the lifeless body of the one person she had left in this world, ripped away from her by some fucking mongrel that shouldn’t even exist to begin with. If anyone had motivation to find out how this happened, it was her.

She was fuming by the time Dean pulled onto her street, pushing her anger towards fury. Did he seriously think he could just drop her off and she’d willingly hide in her house to wait for the answers he’d probably never deliver? But he’d turned the car off and was almost to her door before she could even begin to argue.

She found him picking the lock on her door. “I have a key, you know.”

He shrugged. “I don’t have all day to wait for you to catch up. Tag along if you want, but,” the lock clicked and he turned to her. “At this point, you’re nothing but a liability and a distraction. I can’t be responsible for keeping you safe.”

It wasn’t his favorite mask to wear, but being a dick was a skill he’d honed, and using this significant talent was usually enough to keep people a safe distance away, to keep them from becoming collateral damage. But rather than break under the harshness of his words, she seemed to steel under their weight and pushed past him into the house.

He sighed against his failed attempt to keep her out of all this, closing the door behind him before making his way up the stairs. Ashley was already in Sara’s room, digging through top shelves of the closet, flinging anything that was useless behind her. He had to duck to avoid being hit by a pair of heavy hiking boots.

“I’ve already looked through this you know,” she said. “I don’t know what you expect to find.”

“Well, maybe you didn’t know what to look for,” he said, and she tensed against the sound of his voice. “Anywhere else she might hide something important?”

“In the bureau,” she said, her voice shaking but carefully monotone.

She kept her back to him, rummaging through clothes and shoe boxes. He started opening the dresser’s drawers, looking for anything hidden and making sure there weren’t any false bottoms. Everything seemed ordinary, save a few pairs of underwear that he’d never seen on a woman before. He raised his eyebrows at them, transferring the mental image to his bucket list of things to see before he died.

He heard a bang behind him, jarring him from his inappropriately timed fantasy, and found Ashley leaning with her left palm against the wall, rearing her right arm back for another release of anger. He grabbed her arm before she could break her wrist with the impact.

“I know that probably seems like a good idea, but all it’s going to do is earn you a trip to the hospital.” She wretched her arm out of his grip. He took a step back and held his hands up in surrender under the heat of her glare. “Just calm the fuck down.”

Her chest heaved and her nostrils flared as she fought the fury that she’d allowed to boil over. Emotions were volatile, and she’d learned long ago that it was best to keep them under tight control. But between the asshole standing in front of her and the answers that were beyond her reach, it had all become too much.

He didn’t say anything else, just stood still for a moment while she collected herself. He could almost see the lashing fire dimming in her eyes, burning down to simmering coals, ready to flare up with the slightest blow. Shit, he thought.

“Trust me, I know what you’re going through.” He laughed harshly. “Believe me. But all losing your cool does is waste time.”

“Then quit being a dick,” she said.

His lips twitched at the corners. “Fair enough.” He took a step toward the closet, giving it a closer look. “Look, I’m sorry, but I don’t play well with others. They always seem to get -” He stopped.

He narrowed his eyes and cocked his head, trying to figure out exactly what he was seeing. Feeling that small rush of adrenaline that he always got when he was onto something, he grabbed the desk chair and pulled it over.

“What are -”

“Hold on,” he said, cutting her off so he could focus.

“Whattya know,” he said. The wall behind the top shelf seemed off, and as relieved as he was to pull away the piece of sheetrock hiding the secret cubby, he couldn’t help but feel it was a little cliche. Inside was a small wooden box covered with carved symbols. He stepped down from the chair, carefully gripping the strange object. They both just stared at it for a moment before meeting each other’s eyes.

“Elementary, my dear Watson,” he said, flashing a smile.

***

Cheers!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Writing Challenge Week 3: Write a Review

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3. Review a movie/book/anything

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Ryan Brenner, a travelling musician, and Jackie Laurel, a former singer at a crossroads in her marriage, meet by chance while Ryan is busking on the street. They share an immediate connection, but it’s fleeting, until a sudden accident propels them together. Soon, Ryan finds himself at Jackie’s house for dinner, where they discover they share more than a passion for music. Ryan’s battling to find the courage to write his own music and Jackie’s fighting an estranged husband who wants custody of her daughter. The two form an unlikely relationship that may change their lives forever

 

 

My weekly writing challenge is a bit late. I’ve been under the weather for the past few days, and I spent all of yesterday either at the doctor or on the couch watching movies. The latter part was glorious and something I’ve not done in a very long time.

Since I already post book reviews here and since I had a movie marathon yesterday, I figured my third challenge would be about this little indie movie, Jackie & Ryan.

This movie was very subtle and almost poetic in relaying its emotions and messages. I almost shut it off, to be honest, in favor of something that had more, well… more. Aside from their chance meeting, it all seemed very normal, as if I were watching a documentary on someone’s day to day life. In a world where drama is at the touch of your fingertips at all times, something like that can seem … slow. In the end, that’s what ended up being this movie’s most appealing aspect.

Ryan is a traveler. He jumps from train to train, coming upon little towns to play his music. He lives out of his backpack, and although we see how cold and lonely it can be riding in a metal cart, the lifestyle definitely has it’s appeal. Just up and go wherever you want, whenever you feel like it. Jackie, on the other hand, had a solid life that is slowly unraveling. Her career as a musician is over as is her marriage. As a result, she faces a challenging divorce, and her soon-to-be ex-husband has a lawyer that threatens to take everything, including their daughter.

Jackie and Ryan are opposites in a lot of ways but not in the ways that are important. They seem to lift each other up from their very first meeting and give each other the strength and courage to take the difficult next steps in their lives.

The music in this film gave me chills. It’s this perfect combination of blues, folk and country, and I found myself downloading the soundtrack. The music brings the whole story together and seems to be a character in itself.

 

Looking at the poster of this movie, you’d think it was all about the romance, but I felt that it had a minor role to play. The story was about finding your place, your home, whether it be on the road with nothing but an open sky over your head, a brick and mortar with four walls, or simply someone that makes you feel like you can do anything.

Cheers!

 

Review: Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon

For nearly twenty y5364ears Claire Randall has kept her secrets. But now she is returning with her grown daughter to Scotland’s majestic mist-shrouded hills. Here Claire plans to reveal a truth as stunning as the events that gave it birth: about the mystery of an ancient circle of standing stones… about a love that transcends the boundaries of time… and about Jamie Fraser, a Scottish warrior whose gallantry once drew a young Claire from the security of her century to the dangers of his.

Now a legacy of blood and desire will test her beautiful copper-haired daughter, Brianna, as Claire’s spellbinding journey of self-discovery continues in the intrigue-ridden Paris court of Charles Stuart… in a race to thwart a doomed Highlands uprising… and in a desperate fight to save both the child and the man she loves.

 Goodreads / Amazon

Rating: 5/5

“For I have lied, and killed, and stolen; betrayed and broken trust. But there is the one thing that shall lie in the balance. When I shall stand before God, I shall have one thing to say, to weigh against the rest.”

His voice dropped, nearly to a whisper, and his arms tightened around me.

Lord, ye gave me a rare woman, and God! I loved her well.”

 

Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ. 

I’m still reeling and could in all honesty leave those four words as the sum of my review, but I just can’t let that suffice.

Jamie & Claire have a love story of epic proportions. It always has this cloud of doom hanging over it, tragedy lurking around every seemingly happy corner, pulling at your heartstrings and tear ducts over and over again. What I love about them is that they could have had a happy, quiet life but choose the hard road. To them, it’s the only choice; they’re hell-bent on changing the fate of Scotland and the grim future of those they love.

I don’t know how Diana Gabaldon keeps it all straight. She’s a master story-teller, weaving every little detail together into a twisty, curvy story that has constant surprises or revelations.

The characters she creates (even those with a minor role) come alive, leaping from the pages, attaching themselves to the reader in a way that keeps them with you long after you finish. I’m just thankful I was able to jump immediately to book three so I wouldn’t have to let them go for any period of time. I’ve found myself mourning, hoping, and smiling with them throughout the day, whether I’m reading or not.

Like I said, it’s just one of those stories that stay with you.Not only that, but every scene is intricately detailed, bringing history alive even if it has a touch of fiction to it.

This series has quickly become one of my favorite of all time, and I’m only on book three. I don’t know what I did before it came into my life, and I have no idea what I’ll do when I’m done. Probably just start all over again.

Cheers!

 

Sully’s Shelf

Sully’s Shelf is a post I created in order to spread the love of my toddler’s favorite books. I’m not the only avid reader in my house, and my kid has the loaded bookshelves to prove it.

Our local library has the best kid’s section. It has a train set, a play kitchen, kid-friendly chairs and tables, and books everywhere. They are scattered on tables, piled in baskets and all within easy reach of little hands. It’s awesome.

We went yesterday and picked out a few good ones that we’ve already several times. Here’s what Sully’s reading this week:

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Sully’s obsessed with rockets, trains, cars, tractors and pretty much anything mechanical that makes a lot of noise. It’s about a little hedgehog who has wanted to be an astronaut his whole life and has a chance to make his dreams come true. Filled with wonderful illustrations, Sully got pretty excited with all the colorful rockets and aliens.

 

 

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Most parents I know have heard of Giraffes Can’t Dance and for good reason. “Those who are different just need a different song.” This book sends a great message and is beautifully and colorfully illustrated. Sully loved naming all the animals and dancing like Gerald.

 

 

 

 

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Another book with gizmos, gadgets, and the mechanical. As with most children’s books, though, it’s all about the message. “You can only truly fail if you quit.” A good message for a toddler who can easily get frustrated when something doesn’t work the way he wants it to.

 

 

 

 

Even as I finish up this blog post, my munchkin is thrusting books on top of my keyboard and demanding to sit in my lap to read. So off we go…

But first, what are some of your favorite children’s books?

 

Cheers!

Review: Built by Jay Crownover


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Sometimes you have to tear everything down to build something new…

Sayer Cole is frozen inside. At least, that’s what it’s felt like for as long as she can remember. She’s yet to let anyone past her icy exterior – and the one guy she thinks might melt her heart couldn’t possibly be interested in someone so uptight.

Rough, hard and hot-as
-hell, Zeb Fuller has rebuilt his life and his construction business since protecting his family sent him to jail all those years ago. His elegant client, Sayer, makes him feel like a Neanderthal in denim, but despite the many hints that he’s been dropping to get to know her better, she seems oblivious to his charms.

Just as things finally start to heat up, Zeb’s past comes back to haunt him and he needs Sayer’s professional help to right a wrong and to save more than himself. As these opposites dig in for the fight of their lives, fire and ice collide in an unstoppable explosion of steam…

 Goodreads / Amazon

Rating: 3/5

There’s nothing better than a big, burly tattooed guy. Strap on a tool belt and a heap of compassion, and you’ve got the perfect package. Zeb Fuller is a dream, and I might be a little in love with his confidence and ability to turn shitty situations into something beautiful, whether it’s a beat-up house in need of a remodel or the more complicated aspects of life.

I felt almost the complete opposite about Sayer Cole. There were parts of her I liked – her friendship with her roommate, Poppy (a young woman who’d been abused by her husband), and her determination to fight tooth and nail for children’s rights in court. She has some major daddy issues, and I felt bad for her, but there comes a time when you’ve just gotta let it go. And she wouldn’t. Let. It. Go. Her redundant inner monologue about how she was frozen inside just wouldn’t fly after a certain point, and I got kinda annoyed with her for making choices on behalf of Zeb. He’s a grown-ass (and I mean GROWN) man. Let him make his own decisions about who he wants to love.

Other aspects that knocked this book down in rating for me were the insta-love and never-ending sex scenes. I’m not a prude by any means but I just felt like if a chapter ended with a pages-long sex scene, the next chapter shouldn’t begin with one. Maybe I got bored with it all because most of these scenes had the exact same wording. Anyway, less is more in this case. That, and their feelings for each other felt forced – there was no growth – it was just *BAM* we’re obsessed with each other, and that was that.

I loved, loved, loved the little boy, Hyde, and how he came into the picture (I won’t spoil it for you). I feel like he brought it all together, and I wish we’d seen more of his story. He brought out new emotions in all the other characters and, I feel, was the catalyst in their growth.

Overall, Built is a pretty satisfying read about two people on complete opposite sides of the spectrum coming together. The writing is good and the characters are well-developed. Although this wasn’t a favorite of mine, Jay Crownover receives a lot of raving reviews, and I liked this one enough to be curious about some of her other books.

Last thought: check it out and see for yourself. This book has a lot of five-star reviews, so the odds are that you’ll love it.

Cheers!

Teaser Tuesday: Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon

For nearly twenty yea5364rs Claire Randall has kept her secrets. But now she is returning with her grown daughter to Scotland’s majestic mist-shrouded hills. Here Claire plans to reveal a truth as stunning as the events that gave it birth: about the mystery of an ancient circle of standing stones… about a love that transcends the boundaries of time… and about Jamie Fraser, a Scottish warrior whose gallantry once drew a young Claire from the security of her century to the dangers of his.

Now a legacy of blood and desire will test her beautiful copper-haired daughter, Brianna, as Claire’s spellbinding journey of self-discovery continues in the intrigue-ridden Paris court of Charles Stuart… in a race to thwart a doomed Highlands uprising… and in a desperate fight to save both the child and the man she loves

 Goodreads / Amazon

“I stood stock-still, watching. I had come through the fading night to find this, to stop them. And having found them, now I could not intervene, for fear of causing a fatal interruption. All I could do was wait, to see which of my men would die.”

 

*sigh* This book – this whole series – will be the death of me. I know it. Have you ever been terrified to finish a book because you just know that the characters’ future is going to shatter your heart into little, irretrievable pieces? I feel that way as I near the end of Dragonfly in Amber (#2 in the Outlander series). I cried like a snot-nosed toddler reading book #1, so I’m under no impression that the rest of book two won’t leave me emotionally crippled. And yet, I love it ;).

Cheers!

Writing Challenge Week 2: Write a Fanfiction

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Challenge #2: write a fanfiction.

 

Wait. What?

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When you’ve never done something before, it can be intimidating as hell. Where do I start? What if I suck? I have no idea what I’m doing.

I still have that lingering sensation of self-doubt, but this turned out to be a lot of fun and, for the sake of keeping this post at a manageable length, transformed into another project that I hope to continue. It’s untitled, but for those of you who are unfamiliar with the characters (I mean, how is that possible?), it’s based on the show Supernatural.

I hope you read it, but more than that, I hope you enjoy it.

Cheers!

***

“Keep your fucking hands off her,” she said, gritting her teeth, feeling the weight of the gun in her hand, her finger twitching toward the trigger. He held his hands up in surrender, his eyes darting to glance at the gun she kept lowered. He was surprised. If it were him, he’d have fired long ago.

“No problem,” he said. Her shoulders traveled up and down as she heaved heavy breaths, nearly growling at him in anger. Yet she still didn’t aim at him. He could see the shift in her eyes as her emotions slid from anger to sadness to acceptance. This was always the worst part.

Her eyes misted over, but she clenched her teeth, refusing to cry over this monster that resembled her family. Her sister had been dead a long time. She’d already grieved her loss once. She wouldn’t do it again. He lowered his hands, sensing that the tension was ebbing. She was looking over the body that he’d destroyed, a sense of loss and longing clouding her face. He knew that look. At least, he knew how it felt. He was just lucky enough to live in a world where death wasn’t always final; there was always a way back to life if you were willing to pay the price.

“Thank you,” she finally whispered, so softly that he had to strain to hear. She cleared her throat and her gaze sharpened on him. “Thank you,” she said again, more firmly.

He just nodded, understanding. It was one thing to see an innocent loved one die. It was a completely other tragedy to see them transformed into something of nightmares. At least now she’d have the chance to move on, if there was such a concept. They stood there for another few moments, and he started to feel awkward. He’d never been comfortable with silence or grief; he usually barreled through them with sarcasm until he was a safe distance away. The mess needed to be cleaned up, but she still had the gun in her hand, and he wasn’t about to risk a bullet again by trying to take care of the body.

“So, we can’t leave her here,” he said as gently as he could. He’d never been good at being tactful and empathetic either. That was Sam’s role to play. She narrowed her eyes, and he thought he saw her tense again, but she relaxed and let out a breath. Tucking the gun into the back of her pants, she nodded.

“Okay.”

She moved to grab the body that used to be her sister’s under the arms and, looking at him questionably, asked, “Well, are you going to help me or what?”

His eyebrows shot up and he shrugged, going for the legs so they could get the body to the car that was parked haphazardly at the end of the alley. He could deal with a sense of purpose. She’d pulled up in a rush, tires squealing against the pavement as she hit the brakes, wrenching herself through the driver’s side door that was left open in her panic only to find that he’d already twisted the knife. He could still hear her echoed screams as what used to be her sister fell in a heap onto the trash-littered pavement of the dark alley.

They struggled with the dead weight, but managed to lay the body across the back seat of the little sedan. Dean closed the door and wiped his hands on his jeans. He could see that the keys were still in the ignition and took the liberty of climbing in the driver’s seat. She didn’t say a word, only slid into the passenger side. They remained silent as they pulled away from the dark, abandoned buildings, neither looking forward to the task at hand.

***

The fire crackled, overtaking Sara’s body in a matter of moments. It was scary how quickly love and memories could turn to ash. Ashley sniffed, shoved her hands in her pockets and turned back to the car.

“You need a ride?,” she asked Dean as she walked away from the last of her family. She couldn’t watch her sister and the plans they had made go up in flames for one more second. Damn waiting for the fire to turn to coals. Let it burn the whole fucking forest to the ground.

“Uh, sure,” he hesitated, torn between attending the growing fire and not getting his ass left in the middle of nowhere. Seeing that she wasn’t slowing in her determination to get the hell out of there, he opted to follow.

She pulled up behind the Impala that was parked a few blocks from the fateful alley and put the car in park.

“What was that thing?,” she asked quietly, and he noted that she wasn’t referring to the monster as her sister.

He sighed. It was unavoidable after what she’d seen. Ashley had witnessed her sister’s transformation and animalistic need to tear into and devour a human body. She’d looked on in horror at the aftermath, the gaping, shredded cavity in a human chest where a beating heart used to thrive. She hadn’t said much about it at the time, which Dean had admittedly found unusual, although he’d also considered it luck that he wasn’t going to push. He’d been an idiot to think he’d avoid this conversation altogether as she just turned away and continued the search for Sara, as if eating a human heart was normal behavior. But now that it was all over, she knew what and how and why it all happened to an extent; she was just asking for confirmation.

“Look, I’m just gunna give it to you straight. That was a werewolf.” He made a motion with his hand that suggested he knew what she was going to ask next. “Yes, they’re real. And yes, that means other monsters exist too.” He didn’t have the patience for the truth-spilling spiel, the confession that changed a person’s perspective of the world they thought they knew. He’d lived in it for so long that it was hard to empathize with disbelief and shock.

“And this is what you do? Kill werewolves?” Her tone was matter-of-fact without that edge of doubt that he usually heard when people found out who he was. She was calm, asking the questions that must have been at the back of her mind for the last couple of days since they crossed paths in the search for Sara.

He shrugged. “Yeah, werewolves and … other things.” He didn’t feel the need to go any deeper. He wished it were as simple as just hunting run-of-the-mill monsters, the way it had been before he had been shocked with more truth than anyone should know. Leviathans, demons, angels and all that apocalyptic rapture bull-shit that he and his brother had been wrapped up in recently didn’t need to be mentioned. He considered this hunt a type of vacation, and he was doing his damnedest to keep his mind away from what he and Sam went through. What Sam was still going through.

Sam would know how to say goodbye to this girl, to ease her back onto the path of a normal life, and then they’d be able to hit the road guilt-free, moving on to the next shithole town with a monster problem.  As for Dean, he never knew what to say, but he was sure that he didn’t want to leave anything undone. He needed to make sure she’d be okay. That’s what all this was about, right? Saving people?

“I figured that’s what it was. It made sense, I guess, if any of this is actually supposed to make sense.” Her fingers were shaking a bit as she tucked her dark hair behind her ear, but her voice remained steady. “But I didn’t actually believe it was my sister.” She turned to Dean now, looking for more answers than he might be able to give. “If werewolves exist, then the lore is true, right? That’s how this happened? She was bitten?”

He pressed his lips together in a thin line and nodded. That was his next line of thinking also. Who had bitten Sara? He had hoped to continue that road alone, but seeing the look of vengeance on Ashley’s face, he knew he’d have her on his heels whether he told her to go home or not. He felt that same need for justice for his brother, so how could he deny it to anyone else?

“Where do we start?,” she asked, determination in her voice. She wasn’t going to be pushed away, and she was making sure he knew it.

He sighed and climbed out of her car, turning around to lean in and meet her narrowed eyes. “Follow me.”

He slammed the door and got into his Impala. He sat for a moment before starting it up, briefly wondering what the hell he was getting himself into bringing a civilian along on a hunt. He looked in the rearview mirror and, even through the darkness, could see the anger clinging to every feature of her face. He sighed again, resigned.

“Fuck it.” He turned the key in the ignition.

***

 

 

Review: The Distance From Me to You by Marina Gessner

Wild  meets  E23846040ndless Love  in this multilayered story of love, survival, and self-discovery.

McKenna Berney is a lucky girl. She has a loving family and has been accepted to college for the fall. But McKenna has a different goal in mind: much to the chagrin of her parents, she defers her college acceptance to hike the Appalachian Trail from Maine to Georgia with her best friend. And when her friend backs out, McKenna is determined to go through with the dangerous trip on her own. While on the Trail, she meets Sam. Having skipped out on an abusive dad and quit school, Sam has found a brief respite on the Trail, where everyone’s a drifter, at least temporarily.

Despite lives headed in opposite directions, McKenna and Sam fall in love on an emotionally charged journey of dizzying highs and devastating lows. When their punch-drunk love leads them off the trail, McKenna has to persevere in a way she never thought possible to beat the odds or risk both their lives.

 Goodreads / Amazon

 What did you do the summer after you graduated high school? I think I spent mine the way most upcoming college freshman do and went to parties, slept late, and lounged around the blissful idea that I was no longer a child. *smirk* I wish I’d read The Distance From Me to You back then. If I had a daughter now, I’d urge her to read it.

The simple and smooth writing style along with the strong characters and compelling story line made the pages easy to devour. It was like the perfect combination of all my favorite elements came together in this novel, and I couldn’t put it down until it was done.

I lIMG_0013_Fotor.jpgove strong female characters! McKenna’s youth is obvious in some of the choices she makes, but if you look at her situation from the perspective of eighteen-year-old eyes, would you really not make the same choices? When you’re that age, the dangers of the world don’t seem real. She second-guesses herself because everyone else seems to doubt her; she feels she has something to prove, but when the harsh reality of mortality comes crashing down on her, she realizes that she’s stronger all on her own than she ever thought possible.

IMG_0004I wasn’t sure how to feel about Sam. I think I liked him because of what he brought out in McKenna, and I definitely admired how far he’d come and the kindness he showed despite (or maybe because of) his abused childhood. He had his sweet moments, but he’s a runner. If anything came close to exposing the demons of his past, he either pushed it away by being a complete jerk or took off. It took a disaster, as it usually does, to make him see that he has a lot to learn, but he accepts this with grace, and I think that’s when he became a character I could love.

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This story is nothing if not inspirational. It’s about a girl who takes on an incredibly hard task with little experience and absolutely no real idea of what to expect and comes out the other end a woman. It’s a journey of self-discovery, and what I loved most is that McKenna realizes how young she is, how much life she has before her, and doesn’t allow her love for a boy alter her choices or the things she wants for herself. She keeps going, and, as a result, comes to know exactly who she is.

I give this book five out of five stars. Read it!

Cheers!

Book Beginnings: Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor

By way of a staggering deception, Karou has taken control of the chimaera rebellion and is intent on steering its course away from dead-end vengeance. The future rests on her, if there can even be a13618440 future for the chimaera in war-ravaged Eretz.

Common enemy, common cause.

When Jael’s brutal seraph army trespasses into the human world, the unthinkable becomes essential, a
nd Karou and Akiva must ally their enemy armies against the threat. It is a twisted version of their long-ago dream, and they begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people.

And, perhaps, for themselves. Toward a new way of living, and maybe even love.

But there are bigger threats than Jael in the offing. A vicious queen is hunting Akiva, and, in the skies of Eretz … something is happening. Massive stains are spreading like bruises from horizon to horizon; the great winged stormhunters are gathering as if summoned, ceaselessly circling, and a deep sense of wrong pervades the world.

What power can bruise the sky?

From the streets of Rome to the caves of the Kirin and beyond, humans, chimaera and seraphim will fight, strive, love, and die in an epic theater that transcends good and evil, right and wrong, friend and enemy.

At the very barriers of space and time, what do gods and monsters dream of? And does anything else matter?

 Goodreads / Amazon

Nerve thrum and screaming blood, wild and churning and chasing and devouring and terrible and terrible and terrible -“

If you’ve read the first two novels in this trilogy, you know that this sounds like the never-ending war of another world. The fact that this book jumps right into the terror of it makes me brace for an intense read, although I would expect nothing less from the superb talent that is Laini Taylor.

Cheers!

Sully’s Shelf

I’m not the only avid reader in my house. My two-year-old son loves books so much that he has his own bookshelf which he peruses daily. Sometimes we’ll go through ten or more books in one sitting, so I can say I’m pretty well read when it comes to children’s books.

Sully’s Shelf is a post I created in order to share some of his favorite books. I share mine all the time, and I figured it was only fair that my little bookworm was able to spread the word about his.

Our local library has a great kid’s section, and our recent trip turned up a few treasures. Not only that, but we’ve acquired a recent permanent addition to our little collection.

il_570xn-759680338_pw441. Sam & Dean’s Adventures

I’m a HUGE Supernatural fan, so it’s only natural that my kid would own a board book that revolves around Sam and Dean’s story.

We usually sing Carry On My Wayward Son at the end, and as he always ends up dancing, I think that’s Sully’s favorite part of the whole book.

 

 

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2. The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend by Dan Santat

This book is so super adorable and filled with beautiful illustrations. Even the print is handwritten, making it very relatable to a child.

It’s about a little imaginary friend who has yet to be imagined by a child, so he does the unimaginable! He travels the world in search of his friend.

My son calls it the “boo book” because obviously Beekle looks like a royal ghost.

 

 

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3. Splat the Cat by Rob Scotton

Splat is scared to go to his first day of school and makes up excuse after excuse in order to stay safely at home.

But once he gets there, he realizes that he not only has a lot to learn, but a lot to offer.

Sully doesn’t call cats what they are but instead affectionately calls them “meows.” Close enough :).

 

 

 

This is what we’re reading this week! What are some of your babies’ favorites?

Cheers!