The Stopover part one

To help readers along and escape this crazy world for a bit, this site will be used to add some random stories for entertainment. 

I will be returning to the world of the Ancient Guardians characters and my hope was to use Harrison’s sense of humor to lighten things up for us. As I said on my FB author page, Harrison shocked me when I stepped back into this world only to find him in a bad mood. LOL. This guy. 

Though, I just wrote the second part today and he’s more loosened up. Let’s hope this helps readers get through these tough times. For now I’ll post what I write here:

So the title is: The Stopover and subtitle has become: All the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t put Harrison sour mood back together again 😉

I hope you enjoy.

The Stopover

 

 

Harrison sat at the table filled with royals and people of importance in the current kingdom they were visiting. He silently exhaled, concealing the fact that he’d reached his limits of everyone at this table, engaging in useless conversation to impress the fact that the emperor was visiting.

“The emperor and his wife are in excellent spirits for having visited so many kingdoms,” Duchess Juliette whispered to Harrison, sitting at his left.

Harrison’s eyes left Angie’s amused ones from sitting across the table. He took a sip of his brandy, “Indeed they are.” Harrison said, knowing this woman, a meaningless relationship from his past was trying to engage him.

She chuckled, bringing Harrison to look at her. “Forgive me,” she giggled, “But why am I not surprised that you are the only one drinking brandy while the rest of us are sipping wine.”

Is she serious? “There is no need to forgive such an ignorant statement, duchess,” he answered with a cheeky grin. “I believe you of all people should know me well enough to know that I do not follow others as if I were a sheep.”

“You haven’t changed at all,” she sipped her wine. “I will admit that I am quite shocked that any woman could handle you as her husband.”

“Perhaps you are not shocked, my lady, but the proper emotion would be jealous.” Harrison taunted.

He watched her cheeks flush red, “You are the worst man I have ever known.”

“I know,” Harrison smiled, “I believe those were the very last words you told me since I last saw you.”

Harrison motioned for a refill of his drink, only to catch the somber eye of Levi. “I’m not getting drunk, emperor,” he telepathically informed his cousin, “I’m merely at my limits with this meal that has lasted long enough. Wrap it up, of all kings, this one I despise the most.”

Levi’s smirk told Harrison what the man already knew. The woman sitting to his left, Duchess Juliette, was a mistake he made long ago and had forgotten about until he sat to dine at this table.

Harrison’s lips twisted up into a grin that only the devil himself could give. Levi brought his attention back to King Brandon, ignoring Harrison’s mental communication with him and the look of revenge his cousin had on his face.

In Harrison’s opinion, this was an intentional stop, and therefore, Harrison would ensure that they dug deep into the kingdom and not just sit at a table filled with fake and lying conversations in order to please the emperor.

King Brandon was another annoyance from the past. The last time Harrison and Levi both encountered the young king was in their early guardian training days. It was no surprise when Brandon left the guardian units and went back to this kingdom on orders from his father. King Garrett informed Emperor Navarre that his son, Brandon should be sent home and pulled from the guardian units. It was his plea that Brandon left to prepare himself to be a future king and to take over the land and rule in his place.

Brandon was annoying, to say the least. He practically cried like a spoiled child if he missed a step in training, or was reprimanded for anything. It was obvious to all that he was never so grateful to leave guardian training—and in Harrison’s opinion, hide behind the crown and live his life out as the coward, spoiled duke he was.

“And what is your outlook on this matter, Harrison?” Levi asked, knowing that Harrison’s glaring over at King Brandon talking was going to lead to further gossip after dinner was over.

“Harrison?” King Brandon sat back in his chair, bringing his chalice of wine to his lips, “I thought he is now referred to as the Guardian Commander?”

Harrison stretched his arm out on the table and reclined in his seat, knowing it was an informal and a rude gesture toward the king at his table. He refrained from showing any frustration at King Brandon’s taunting him.

“Harrison you are making yourself out to be a fool. It’s obvious, sit up and this all shall be over soon. In fact, I will take the king up on his offer to stay over for the evening just to torment you further, if you do not.”

“Empty threats. I shall have my revenge on you planning this stop in the first place, dear cousin.”

“What was that?” Harrison said, proving his boredom to everyone who was now paying full attention to him and his interaction with their king.

“The emperor just referred to you informally, and I believe you are known as the guardian commander, am I correct?” King Brandon asked.

“Indeed, I am. However, I believe you just insulted your emperor.” Harrison gladly used the man’s lack of sense while insulting him to address the fact that the king had just insulted Levi. “However, the emperor is more forgiving than I am, so I believe your bringing up he spoke my name informally at your little dining table will be forgiven.”

“Emperor,” King Brandon looked at Levi in fear, “Forgive me, it was not my intention to insult or reprimand your words.

Oh give me a break.Harrison thought to himself.

“No,” Harrison spoke before Levi could. “It wasn’t your intent to insult the emperor, I believe all at this table know that. You intended to insult me, KingBrandon.”

“I was only leading a conversation to express my gratefulness that you are our commander.”

Harrison deescalate this conversation before I do.Levi’s orders were stern when he telepathically spoke to his cousin.

“I’ve been commander for years,” Harrison said, ignoring Levi’s request, “I find it odd that you are just now acknowledging that.”

King Brandon sighed as the servants walked in to take their dinner plates and replace them with dessert.

“Forgive the commander,” Levi said with another glance of warning to his cousin. “He grows weary when out traveling abroad.”

“I know the commander well enough, emperor,” King Brandon smirked as if he had Levi on his side. “This banter is nothing new.”

“And having cake served, yet again, for dessert is nothing new to me,” Harrison said, his manners wholly gone now. “Do tell me, how are the people of your lands getting along? It seems as though your bakers could use some imagination when it comes to serving their emperor.”

This is a joke, right? Harrison, stop this now.

Harrison’s eyes went directly to his wife—the one he feared more than Levi, who right now looked as though he would strip him of his duty as Guardian Commander. The look Angeline held for Harrison was one that if it were able to be lethal, Harrison would be dead where he sat.

“Forgive me,” Harrison practically gagged on the words he was far from feeling at this point. “The emperor is correct. My irritable mood is present due to sitting and dining at tables all over the lands. I believe I should excuse myself before I embarrass the emperor further.”

When Harrison stood, the table followed. He was causing an unnecessary scene, and he knew it. Something bothered Harrison—it was more than the boredom of visiting these kings and listen to them pay everyone lips service at every kingdom they visited. This idiot—in Harrison’s opinion—was hiding something. But how did Reece not pick up on this when they first arrived? She was the one who always got a perfect read on anyone. Even worse, how in the heck was Harrison the only one and not Levi or Angie?

Something wasn’t right in this kingdom, and Harrison felt it. King Brandon assumed this throne too early. Like his father before him, he was a snake. How Navarre didn’t cleanse this entire kingdom of the Julip family name and all the heirs was beyond Harrison.

Brownwell was always a quiet and small kingdom, yes. However, no kingdom under the Oxley Empire was ever treated with greater or lesser importance—big or small. This kingdom was somehow passed over though, Harrison felt it, and Levi should have immediately known it.

It could be Harrison just being highly sensitive and reaching his limits with all these visits. Harrison walked out of the castle, still unsure what had him so irritated with this particular stop.

He eyed the entourage of Pasidian’s soldiers that followed them, at least fifty men in total following with the convoy of carriages. That’s when it all came to Harrison. He smiled proudly when the idea of doing something mischievous, different, and daring hit him.

He nodded to acknowledge the Imperial guards of Pasidian Palace who stood waiting at the bottom of the stone steps on the east side of the castle. He walked purposefully toward the stables where the men were that would prepare the carriages within the next hour to leave Juntson Castle. Levi would be forced over the next hour to clean upHarrison’s mess he left behind after rudely leaving the dining table. Harrison knew his cousin would not let him off easy for his behavior. However, Harrison also knew his cousin well enough to understand he wouldn’t hold this against him either.

Usually, Harrison was in excellent spirits and would playfully taunt anyone at any given time. This seemed different. The more Harrison recalled his agitation at this particular king’s castle, the more he knew he had to take this next step in a covert operation to uncover what this foolish king was hiding.

Perhaps it was nothing, and if it were nothing, a small change of plans—like the ones that just came to Harrison wouldn’t hurt anything. In fact, it would give the horses a rest, and the four of them that were forced to listen to senseless royal nonsense a mental rest.

The plan was unfolding by the second, and Harrison wasn’t going to let anything or anyone stop him now. He needed to find the main driver to the convoy and set these plans in motion before someone did choose to come after him.

 

***

 

It was two hours later and Harrison and for the first time in his adult life, Harrison lost complete track of time. Scratch that, he always lost track of time when alone with his wife, Angeline. But this time, Angie wasn’t the reason for two hours slipping past him as fast as the sun was trying to set.

“Where have you been?” Angie asked as the four were reunited to give their farewells to the happy civilians that lined up in crowds to catch a glance of their emperor visiting their kingdom.

“As always, King Brandon,” Levi said as he offered a farewell handshake to the king Harrison pointedly ignored, “Pasidian Palace looks forward to your visit this summer.”

Harrison used the crowd’s enthusiasm for any acknowledgment from the Imperial family to ignore the king. He waved them off and assisted Angeline and Reece into their carriage. The convoy had multiple carriages and also twenty-five horses of Imperial Guard leading and the other twenty-five guards trailing the transports in the convoy.

Before he could inform Levi the men were riding in the carriage with the women, Harrison was in and seated.

“Harrison?” Reece said with a soft laugh, “you up for ladies talk, or here for Angie? Should I ride with—”

“Relax, green eyes,” Harrison said, one of his pet names for Reece since she took the power of the stone, and her eyes became that color. “It’ll be a long journey to our next destination, and I know you both miss the company of your men. So we’re riding with you.”

“Very bold of you to insist that is true,” Angie chuckled at her husband’s odd behavior. “What’s going on with you and why are you leaving Levi out there alone with the vultures?”

Harrison peeked out of the carriage window and smirked at his cousin caught in conversation with the queen and a few other young duchesses. “He deserves it,” Harrison said dryly. “If he wants to play blind to this idiot king, then he can find a way to excuse himself from those absurd women politely.”

“Now you sound like Levi,” Reece said with humor, “What’s gotten into you?”

Harrison smiled, “Nothing. I told you, I know you ladies missed mine and Levi’s company and I felt inclined to help fill that dreadful void.”

“Yes,” Harrison heard Levi as the door to their carriage opened, “It appears we’ll have an empty carriage.” He heard Levi stumbling over his words.

“Poor guy,” Angie said, watching out of the window from where she and Reece sat across from Harrison. She looked over at her husband, her bronze eyes setting off the beautifully defined features of her face. “You willexplain yourself once Levi is in here and we’re off. You left him in quite a precarious situation when you abandoned him in the dining hall, and now this?”

“He’ll survive,” Harrison chewed on the inside of his cheek, “Trust me, that man has put me through worse. Walking to an empty carriage due to his not paying attention we were loaded into this one, well that’s his fault, not mine.”

Angeline’s eyes narrowed at her husband. For the first time since arriving and being in the company of King Brandon, Harrison’s nerves unwound and oddly at the beauty of his wife through her angry eyes.

Loud cheers erupted as the carriage swayed to Levi stepping in, and the door shut behind him. Levi gave three raps to the carriage door and the Imperial Guards shouted to alert the departure of the Imperial convoy.

“Now,” Levi said in a low voice, “I do demand an explanation,” he said when Harrison’s eyes met his cousin’s sharp blue ones.

“In front of the ladies?” Harrison challenged Levi’s expression, “That would be rude.”

Levi’s exhale was practically a growl, “Rude?” he said with a sharp arch of his eyebrow, “I’m not playing games here, cousin,” Levi said. “We would be having this conversation in the carriage behind this one. However, my cousin chose to hide behind our wives’ lovely skirts and ride in this one.” Levi looked over at Angeline and Reece, “Forgive me if I murder my cousin in front of both of you.”

Reece and Angie chuckled in unison.

“Actually,” Angeline said, “I’d like the reasons for my husband’s irrational behavior myself. Better to have you beat it out of him than me.”

Harrison held both hands up, “Listen,” he said in his defense, “We don’t need to quarrel. Let’s just enjoy this new adventure I have planned for us.”

“Quarrel?” Levi’s voice rose three octaves. “Who are you, my mother?” he said while studying the women’s humor across from him. “Harrison,” he started in a voice that showed self-control over his current frustration. “You must give me a good reason for this behavior. Is there something with King Brandon that you are aware that I am not?”

It must have been just knowing that they were getting further away from the king’s residence. Or that hat he was in the presence of the three people he loved dearly that had Harrison feeling somewhat guilty for his behavior.

“I don’t like the man, and you know this,” Harrison said, scrambling for excuses.

Levi’s eyes widened as they darted toward the women and back to Harrison. “You were completely aware of our visit and the need for it before we arrived. If you felt this way about the man, then why didn’t you just hide in the stables with the horses from the moment we arrived?”

Harrison rubbed his forehead, “Because I would have appeared to be a coward in front of that chump. You must find a way to remove him from his ridiculous throne.” He looked over at Reece and Angie’s confused expressions, “You both did see that meaningless throne room, did you not?”

“Meaningless or not, this is not an excuse to remove an heir from his throne,” Levi said, bringing Harrison’s attention back to him.

“This is not a conversation I’m willing to have right now.”

“Willing or not, we shall have it.” Levi scolded him.

“Harrison, you’re acting like a two-year-old,” Angie bit out at him. “This tour is nearly over, and I am not ending it on a sour note with Levi and Reece. What’s the meaning of this? Why would you suddenly change your behavior and now call for a king to be unseated from his rightful kingdom?”

Harrison glanced out at the scenery of the illuminating forest the convoy was traveling through. He let the trees above them, blocking out the sun, which encouraged the foliage and blooms to illuminate in the darkened forest, soothe his body and soul. He was wound up and it was most likely all of the royal protocols he’d been subjected to. He was a military man at heart, grateful his father allowed him to abdicate his throne and offer it to a member of his mother’s family. They all knew him, loved, and trusted the man. He was a better fit for the throne than Harrison. Everyone knew that as well.

Perhaps this is why Harrison was being driven insane, doing emperor duties alongside Levi and Reece. It was a good idea at the

time, but now he was growing weary of it. Or maybe he was onto something with King Brandon?

Nevertheless, he had to find something on the king now, or he would look like the fool, not King Brandon. He also understood that Levi dreaded these visits, but they were mandatory. The emperor was to take these trips to visit the kingdoms and ensure the governing was untainted and wholesome. Levi spread the visits out, unlike Navarre had done. Navarre would be gone for months at a time with Allestaine, Levi spread the visits out while dividing them into sectors he’d visit every other month. This month was the longest of them all, and even spring blossoms and the fresh air that came with the season, none of it could ease the frustration of visiting the southern kingdoms. Levi was holding it together and the visits were short, just as this one was.

It was rare they stayed in the castles with the royal families unless the Oxley’s knew them personally and enjoyed their company. Most of the time, they stayed in lavish Inns, Pasidian Palace donating more than enough money for the family-operated businesses in the kingdoms. Somehow even Levi adding this freedom from constant royal business and affairs wasn’t enough.

The carriages all halted once the sun came back into sight. It was still high in the sky, shining like the diamond it was. It glistened over the land like it was pointing Harrison to freedom.

“What’s the meaning of this?” Levi looked at Harrison, knowing that nothing was wrong with the convoy, but that this was his cousin’s doing.

Harrison smiled, “You mentioned you simply could not dethrone that joker, correct?”

“I have no firm evidence he’s done anything wrong, Harrison.”

Harrison smiled at how much Levi sounded like his Uncle Navarre in his frustration now. “We’re going to find some then.”

The door opened, and Harrison nodded toward it. “After you, emperor.”

“Ladies,” Levi forced a smile, “It appears my cousin has lost his mind somewhere between the castle and here. Forgive us while we discuss this outside of the carriage,” he looked at Harrison, “You willexplain this and understand my patience is completely lost with you at this point.”

Harrison looked over at Angie and Reece, “I know you both are confused. However, Levi and I will not be discussingmy losing my mind. Instead, both of you shall join us on a unique visit in this kingdom. We shall hunt together for evidence and reasons for dethroning King Brandon.”

“Harrison,” Levi said from outside of the carriage, “get out of the carriage before I reach in and drag you out.”

“We’ll wait here,” Angeline said with a smile. “Harry, you’ve lost your mind, and I shall say my goodbyes to Reece while Levi prepares for our early departure home.”

“No one is going anywhere,” Levi said from outside the carriage. “I will get an explanation as Swann’s Inn is awaiting our arrival with freshly hired staff arranged to take us in.”

Harrison stepped out and could see the anger in Levi’s eyes. “You truly do not sense something is wrong?”

“No, Harrison, at least not with the kingdom. I do sensesomething is quite wrong with you. Why have the carriages stopped, and why have I spotted four riding horses coming this way? You do realize this is not a vacation, correct?”

“I know this is not a vacation. I will just come out and say it, then.” Harrison exhaled.

“Please do,” Levi folded his arms. “I’ve only been holding back from intruding into your thoughts to find these obtuse answers out for myself for that last few hours.”

“I do not believe you are doing everything in your power to investigate this kingdom.” Harrison boldly said.

“Really?” Levi answered in his smooth voice. “Forgive me for failing you, commander. As your emperor, I beg of you, do tell, how should I be investigating this kingdom?”

“By doing what I have planned.”

Levi’s eyes closed in his losing even more patience. “Harrison, if you dare say a horseback ride through a meadow will help me cleanse myself, I shall knock you out without any regret.”

Harrison laughed, “That is exactly what I’m suggesting,” he said, watching Levi’s eyes reopen in disbelief, “Well, everything but that whole knocking me out bit, of course.”

“Very well,” Levi said through gritted teeth, “I’ll humor you. Let us investigate,” he seethed out the word, “this kingdom by a joyful ride through a meadow.”

Harrison grinned, “Oh, this will be more than a joyful ride.”

Click here to continue to Stopover Part 2

 

 

 

Book 4 Ancient Guardians: The Reckoning cover & release update!

I’m so excited to share the cover for the final book in the Ancient Guardians series! Book four, The Reckoning is at 665 pages long and this is due to my wanting to combine the fourth and fifth books and end the series at four. I hope you enjoy big books?!?!

The tentative release date is May 30 or 31st. The Reckoning will not only be available in softcover, but on ALL eReading platforms as well!

Thank you to all of our readers for your amazing support and patience while waiting for this book to be released! You are the best and I’m beyond humbled and grateful for your support!

My love to you all,

Stacy ‘S.L’ Morgan

Stay tuned for the BIG release day news!

 

 

 

Alexander Character Interview

Dated: June 2017

An exclusive interview for the fans of the Ancient Guardians Novel Series. Hopefully I asked the right questions to help you better understand Levi and Reece’s son, Alexander. 

 

Without going into all the details of being picked up in the sleek Pemdai car and hurled into Pemdas, I’m finally sitting in Reece’s favorite room of Pasidian Palace.

I glance around and smile at her personal touches that she made, knowing that it must have been a difficult transition for her to move in with her family after Levi assumed the role of Emperor of Pemdas. But, this is Reece we’re talking about, and she adjusted rather well when she was brought to Pemdas for the first time and in the end, fell in love with Levi and decided this was where she’d live. So, I’m not surprised that a change of living environment would be tough for her.

The family has been rather quiet since I last visited them when the kids were entertained by Zorflaks in the gardens of Oxley Manor and also a short visit when I visited to learn about Levi and Harrison’s first assignment in order to write “Twin Paradox”.

Changes did happen while I was away though. Following the Galactic Wars that Levi successfully led, Emperor Navarre decided it was time to let his son take over the empire.

That revelation was news to me when I first heard about it. I’m used to the idea that emperors and kings give up their thrones due to death or inability to rule, but who am I to judge another realm and what they do? If the emperor wants to retire, then so be it. I’m definitely not going to question the former Emperor Navarre on his decisions. (wink)

My thoughts are interrupted when I hear laughter from outside the elaborate, yet comfortable room I’m sitting in. They’re here, and I’m hoping that Alexander is ready for all the fun questions I’m about to throw his way.

“Stacy!” Reece says in her usual cheerful voice. I’m greeted with a heartfelt hug and note that raising the twins and their youngest daughter Melinda hasn’t taken much of a toll on her. Her eyes are bright with excitement, her golden blond hair flowing freely down her back while dressed in a simple gown. “It is wonderful to see you again.”

She has no idea how happy I am to see her and the rest of the gang again and catch up with them.

Levi is the next to greet me, surprisingly with an embrace and a warm smile. His eyes are still enough to keep even his author mesmerized by them…and let me tell you, this man ages well. Reece sure is one lucky lady.

“Mrs. Morgan,” he says with a wink, knowing I can’t stand being called that by any of them. “It is an honor to have you return to Pemdas.”

“Thank you, your Imperial Majesty,” I return dramatically, knowing that the formalities tend to bother him when he is in a more private setting.

“Stacy,” he says with a smile. He turns back and extends his arm toward a tall, dark-haired young man entering the room who looks like his clone. “Alex, it appears that we’re ready to dig into your darkest secrets. You’re in the spotlight now, kid!”

I look toward the door at Alexander who looks like he’s grown four more inches since I last saw him after recounting the events for writing Twin Paradox.

“Are you sure you wish to talk about only me and my life?” he says with a laugh as he approaches me.

His green eyes are just as brilliant as Reece’s. I can see shades of his mother in him with his smile—a less rigid demeanor than his father—but there is no mistaking Alexander is definitely his father’s son. This should be interesting.

“I plan on writing a little documentary about your life. A lot has happened since the Galactic War, and your father wanted to sit this next story out!” I say as I sit on the comfortable sofa across from the three.

Alexander—who is dressed as immaculately as his father in a long-sleeve button-down shirt, intricately detailed silver waistcoat, cravat, and black trousers—looks over at his father who is sitting to the right of him.

“Really? You believe the galactic wars weren’t adventurous enough for another book to be written about yours and mother’s accomplishments?”

Levi leans forward to peer around Reece who is sitting between her husband and son, “My stories are over for now. If you’d like those who are interested in our family to learn about the next emperor, it is time they all get to know you.”

Reece places her hand casually on Levi’s knee while he relaxes into the sofa, bringing his arm over the edge of it behind his wife. He looks at me, “Let us begin, shall we?”

I can tell that Levi is relieved that this interview will not have him in the spotlight, and more than that, his personal life won’t be shared in another book. The guy is such a gentleman, but sometimes his reserved behavior with stories being shared about him can be annoying.

I pop open my laptop, ready to start this whole thing.

“All right, Alex.” I look over at him and smile, “I can call you that, right?”

He returns my smile with a simple nod, “Of course.”

“All right, to start this thing, I think it’s best if—”

“Hold up!” A familiar and very much expected voice resounds as Harrison enters the room. “I think its best if I’m included in this exclusive interview.”

Harrison ignores the tea that was delivered to the room and goes straight to the buffet to pour himself an amber liquid drink in a crystal glass. He looks back at me, while we watch him in humor. “Morgan, you’re going to need this—and not to fear, I’ll personally drive you home,” he says, raising an empty glass towards me.

“Thanks, but no thanks!” I answer him. “You go ahead a fill yourself up on that, then we’ll move to your deepest and darkest secrets next.”

Harrison laughs as he turns to walk toward an empty, oversized chair to my right, “You seem to forget,” he takes a sip, “The Pemdai mind can control drinks of any nature trying to alter it. Nice try, though.”

I shake my head, knowing that with Harrison interrupting this interview, we may be here all day and I’ll be begging for that drink when we’re done—and I don’t drink!

“Don’t you have work to do in the command center?” Levi asks with a smirk.

Harrison nodded toward him, “You must know that nothing could keep me away from this.”

“Does Angie know you’re in here?” Reece asked with a laugh.

“Nope.” Harrison took another sip, “She believes I’m on assignment,” he looked at me propping a leg up over the other. “In my defense, I didn’t lie to her. I am on assignment…an assignment with our author.”

Levi rolled his eyes and looked at me, “Obviously, you’re used to this with him, so I’m sure he shouldn’t bother you too much.”

“As long as we get this done today, I’ll be fine.”

“Keep on acting like you don’t want me here, I know you love it,” Harrison said smugly. “Now, where are we with our little time-jumping warrior and his amazing skills?”

“We were just getting started, and now I am wishing I brought my questions with me because I’m trying to figure out where to start.” I eye Harrison.

“You’ll be fine.” Harrison encouraged with his usual flirty grin.

“Alex,” I bring my attention back to Levi’s look-a-like son, “I guess I’ll start with the easy stuff.”

“Sounds perfect,” he responds confidently.

“How was it growing up at Oxley Manor? Do you have any fond memories of your former home?”

Alex leans forward, clasps his hands, and seems to be struggling to find an answer.

“It’s not that hard of a question,” Harrison chimes in.

Alex smiles. “There are so many fond memories of our home. We used to take horseback rides every day, and my sisters and I would play in the pond, trying to catch amphibians. Before my sisters and I went into the Guardian training, we had a lot of peaceful times when it was just us.” He looked over at Levi and then back to me, “Father made a lot of efforts to remain here in Pemdas instead serving a lot on Earth. I see now where it was a bit of a sacrifice, but I can’t thank him enough for putting mother and all of his children first in his life while we grew up.”

“Knowing what I know about your father,” I return Alex’s smile, “I can definitely see him putting Guarding on Earth on hold for a while.”

I look at Levi and Reece. “Who is Alex most like in your opinion? Mom or Dad?”

Levi glances over at Alex, and his eyes tighten in a humorous expression, “Poor kid inherited my short temper, but I believe his mother’s humor comes out a lot in him. He’s definitely more outgoing with people than I ever was at his age. In that regard, he’s definitely like his mother.”

“To be sure,” Harrison interjected with a laugh. “Because I have a knack for interrupting, I must interject here.”

I look over at Harrison’s smile. The guy can drive me insane, but it’s hard to stay annoyed with him. “Please, Harrison, I’m sure everyone is dying to know what you think.” I bring my attention to him.

“First of all, Alex is definitely is own person.” He winked at Alex who watched Harrison with some anticipation. “But if readers must know what the kid is truly like, I would say that he’s still young and has a lot to learn. He’s humble and takes criticism well.”

“Are you speaking as his commander or uncle?”

“Both,” Harrison returned. “It takes a lot to admit when you’re wrong—especially when you have the Oxley Genes running through your blood—and there have been situations where Alex found himself at the mercy of an enemy because of his lack of experience.”

“Oh?” I’m quite surprised Harrison just went into Commander mode on me, and I look to Alexander for his reaction. Alexander sighs, yet smiles in response.

“He’s right.” Alexander laughs, “I’ve definitely made some unwise decisions while dealing with rogue time travelers, but I’ve certainly learned from them. I believe that if I hadn’t made some foolish errors, I wouldn’t be where I am today.”

“That’s an excellent way to look at it all. Now, some readers may read this book and expect to see “Levi Junior” in it. How do you feel about growing up in your father’s shadow like this?”

“You mean the readers may not like me because I am not exactly like my father?” he responds with a curious expression.

“Not trying to insult you here, but they—we—all love your mother and father’s story in the first four books that I wrote. Some may have difficulty reading about you, knowing your Levi’s son, but not reacting to certain situations as he would.”

“Wow,” Harrison speaks up. “I, personally, would go mad if I were dealing with an exact carbon copy of Levi at this age again.” He looked at Levi, both men exchanging knowing grins, “As much as I love the man, I can safely say that Levi was a challenge at Alex’s age. Sadly, the man was arrogant and highly annoying with the need to impress everyone that he was suited to be the next Emperor of Pemdas. Do we really need to revisit what we all suffered through with the guy having amnesia brought on by Mordegrin?”

“No!” I answer. “I’m sure Reece would appreciate us leaving all of that in the past.”

“Not as much as I would,” Levi says, glancing at Reece and then back to me. “Off topic, I still must inquire as to why you put all of that in your novel?”

“Plot!” Harrison says with a laugh, “And if you think about it? That situation was critical to what we were facing even though it meant revealing that you kissed Isabel.”

Unexpectedly, Reece laughs at that. “Harrison,” she eyes him, “We never told Alexander about that.”

Harrison rolls his eyes, “Can’t say that I blame you.” He looked at Alexander who was covering a smile, “Looks like the cat’s out of the bag now. I believe that is why I enjoy the fact that you aren’t exactly like him. Though, you do try and dodge all the eligible princesses when they visit the palace—that is definitely you acting like your father in his late teens as well.”

Alex shrugs, “You act as though that is a bad thing.”

“It’s not,” Levi says. “Trust me: if there was one thing I wish I could save you from, it’s the young ladies who will throw themselves at you in hopes to be the next empress.”

“He does fine with all of that,” Reece looks at Alexander. “He’s not entirely rude, but he makes it perfectly clear that he is not interested in settling down and marrying soon. Don’t you? You’d better not be rude, Alex.”

“Is it just me or did this conversation become extremely awkward?” Alexander responds.

“It’s awkward.” I try to make him feel at ease. “Just to clear the air, though, you’re not in any relationship, correct?”

All eyes are now on Alexander.

“No,” he says resolutely. “I am more interested in serving as a Guardian than courting anyone.”

“Moving on,” I wink at Alexander becoming uncomfortable. “How do you feel about becoming the next heir to the Empire?”

His lips twist. “Currently? I do consider the day when that will happen, though it is not what I give my full attention to. Fortunately, father and I have had a lot of conversations about the day he will turn the throne over to me, and that won’t be for a long time. For that, I’m grateful.”

“So what’s it like to police the Time Travelers?”

“My sister, Alysia, and I do that together. Her intuition picks up on rogue travelers before our systems in the command center do. It can be thrilling and exhausting all in the same. I’m truly thankful that Alysia and I do it together, as it is nice not to travel through the ripples of time alone. Recently, we’ve had our hands full with other realms testing us, and we’ve taken my cousins and highly trained Guardians with us to capture the ones that must be sent to The Void.”

“What’s The Void?” I ask.

“It’s similar to an abyss. You must understand though, the ones we send to The Void are extremely evil, and a lot of lives have been saved and left unaltered by sending them to the darkness.”

“It seems as though you struggle with that some?”

I watch as Levi’s expression becomes dark when he looks over at his son. “We all have a great difficulty sending any being into such oblivion; however, we have to put the safety of innocent lives first. Since time travel has been introduced to all of us, it has the unique ability to draw out those with the most sinister of intentions, that is why we must do this. The travelers that are out there know the consequences of altering time, and it tends to diminish the threats. It is a daunting task, but I believe Alex handles it well.” Levi says with a proud smile.

“It seems as though he does, I think we’re all in great hands.” I answer Levi. I look back to Alexander. “So, Alex, I have to ask: Do you ever have moments where you wished you didn’t have the capabilities of traveling through time?”

“No,” he is quick to respond. “I have never known any other way. I know it is my destiny, and I’m grateful for the talent.”

“Are you ever tempted to travel through time for your own enjoyment?”

“I’d love to know the future and what it all holds, but I am not the type of person who likes to know the ending of a book without reading the middle first.” He tightens his lips, “Besides, with each breath we take and decision we make, time is altered. It is not something to play with. I’ve seen travelers become obsessed, and it’s better to live in the present.”

“Listen to young Alex here,” Harrison speaks up, “He’s all grown up and ready to start training Guardians.”

“Reece,” I ignore Harrison. “What would you like readers to know about your son?”

Reece, once sitting fully relaxed into Levi’s side, sits up some. “Well, like Harrison said earlier, he’s definitely his own person. He’s smart, curious, and headstrong. If I were meeting Alex for the first time, I would see that he is quite the gentleman, like his father, but a bit more relaxed and outgoing. At times it seems like he carries the weight of the world on his shoulders, but he is very grounded, so he tends to have an easier time letting things go.”

“You seem very proud.”

“Levi and I are extremely proud of Alexander.” She says a she playfully nudges her son.

“Well, I definitely need to know, Reece…are you comfortable with him dating, or should I say courting young princesses?”

“I can’t honestly see Alex courting a princess—Well, certainly not any of the ones who’ve been lurking around here for the past few years anyway.” She laughs at Alexander’s smirk, “Of course, he’s free to court whomever he wishes, and sometimes love can catch you by surprise, but he’s very much like his father. I think growing up the way Levi and Alex have tends to be isolating in the fact that you aren’t ever too sure that the other person is interested in you because you are an interesting person or because your station in life will benefit them.”

“Very true.” I turn the questions back to Alex, “Alex, what do you think your weaknesses are?” I ask.

He lets out a laugh. “Is this a job interview?”

“We need to know what we’re in for with you, kid,” I tease.

“Without a doubt, it is probably the fact that being quick to anger can tend to overrule my better judgment. I look forward to the day where I am wiser than to give in to it, and I feel like I get better at controlling it every day, but that is something I wish I didn’t struggle with. I don’t like things to be out of my control.”

“Who does?”

“In my line of work, it happens more often than not. I just have to embrace it and learn from it.” He clasps his hands together. “Overall, that’s pretty much me in a nutshell.”

“Is this interview getting old?” I smile sympathetically.

“It is sort of odd, I guess? But I did agree to have my personal story written. I just hope something interesting happens, or the readers will be quite bored.”

“It’s why I still don’t understand why Morgan hasn’t written a series about her favorite person in all of Pemdas…ME,” Harrison tries to scold me with a look.

“You’re the fun side-kick,” I tease.

“Well, one day my father is going to die, and guess who’s up for resigning as commander and having to rule over Vinsmonth Kingdom?”

“I don’t see that happening any time soon,” I act disinterested.

“You never know.” Harrison stands up, “We aren’t immortal. My father could check out at any time, and then you’ll be following the life and times of—”

“Hold up,” Levi interjects with a smile. “You plan on poisoning my uncle? Last I checked, he was in excellent health.”

“One never knows.”

“You want a story that bad?” Levi and I say at the same time.

“Yes,” Harrison eyes me. “Well, Angie may not want to be in the spotlight so much, but that is not up to her.”

We all laugh.

“Right. How about this,” I stand, prompting everyone else to stand as well, “You talk to Angie, and when she says she wants a book series written about your personal lives, I’ll write it.”

“Really?” Harrison rolls his eyes, “She’ll never agree to it, and you know it.”

“Then it’s settled.”

Levi approaches me first. “To be honest, I feel it would be highly enjoyable for you to put Harrison under the spotlight like that. Perhaps it will humble him some?”

I look at Mr. Dazzling Blue Eyes, “I feel if I do it, he’ll make things up just to have some spectacular story written about him.”

“I heard that, Stace, and yes I would,” Harrison answers.

With no more questions to ask, Reece invites me to an outdoor luncheon with all of the family, and without reservation, I take her up on her offer. If only I could ditch my life on Earth and live here with everyone, I would. Thankfully, I’m invited to visit often, and that keeps the longing to live in this fantastic realm at bay.

Now, here’s hoping Alexander will have a good story to tell and I’m a bit excited at the possibility of being invited to travel through time with him just to experience what it’s all about.

***Update: It is now April 10th, and I have finally finished writing and documenting Alexander’s first story. I have to say that I was shocked—everyone was shocked—to say the least at what the future held for Alexander and the entire family. Without giving anything away, Alex’s books are definitely an intriguing adventure.

Though this first book, which releases today, focuses solely on Alexander and introduces a new character, and dragons…I can safely say that Levi, Reece, and Harrison are forced into this series whether they expected to be or not.

Who knew there was a darker enemy than Mordegrin? I guess this is what happens when all galaxies have been opened up…you never know what you’re going to face.

To learn more about Alexander and read the first book in his own series: “Dragon’s Curse” you can now read it today on all online retail outlets. Click here

Here’s the page that will take you to the online store of your choice to begin reading about Alexander in Cursed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cover Reveal

The next episode in the mini series: The Guardians has a cover! YAY!

“SUBMERGED”

Is set to release this spring. I hope you will join Levi and Harrison as they return to Earth on their second assignment as young Guardian Warriors. In this episode they quickly learn that sea creatures, or what humans refer to as Mermaids are not as they appear in a fairytale!

Prepare to have any of your fantasies about mermaids destroyed as the Guardians work to stop these evil beings from destroying innocent lives.

Cover: (Hint: I find it quite interesting that this stunning woman has the exact same eye color as Levi’s…when you read Submerged you’ll find out exactly why.)

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Ancient Guardians Novel Series Boxed Set

The Multi-Award winning novel series that is captivating readers from around the world is now available in a boxed set on all eReading sites!

The Legacy of the Key – The Uninvited- The Awakening

After being rescued by a enigmatic man who mysteriously battled and defeated two men trying to attack her, Reece is left with nothing but to trust this man for her protection.

Overwhelmed when she is transported into a majestic and mesmerizing dimension, Reece will soon learn the truth of who she is and why she was brought into this fascinating new world.

After accepting that these men, Levi and Harrison had only served to protect her, Reece must now accept that her life will be changed forever. Will She ever return to Earth and the normal life she once had?

Once a strange attraction begins to form between her and her personal guardian, Levi, who is also the Emperor’s son, everyone’s life is forced into danger.

Jealousy, betrayal and hatred will lead Reece and the Guardians into the greatest danger they believe they could ever face.

Follow Reece as she accepts the impossible conspiracies are true, and you just might be left wondering for yourself…is there really life out there and if so, are there beings that serve to protect humans on Earth from the dangerous beings who serve to harm and terrorize humans.

This riveting journey that promises to keep you turning pages until the very end, will leave you wondering yourself, ‘Is there really life out there?’

Grab your copy on these sites: 99 Cents for a LIMITED TIME.

Kindle | Nook | Kobo | Apple iBooks

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Release Day for the NEW book in the novella series: The Guardians!

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I am so excited to share the news that the NEW novella series kicks off today with the first book, “TWIN PARADOX” It has been extremely exciting to go ‘back in time’ to where Levi and Harrison first became Guardians and began serving on Earth. In “Twin Paradox” (which is 24K words long) readers will meet a younger Levi and Harrison and journey with the cousins on their first assignment. This first assignment will not only have Levi and Harrison surprised with what they discover, but readers might be surprised as well!

For only 99 cents, Twin Paradox is ready for you to read today! I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it! Welcome to the new mini-series:

The Guardians: Twin Paradox (The Guardians Series, Episode One) Links below:

Goodreads       Amazon       Kobo      Apple    NOOK

Happy Reading!!!

S.L. Morgan

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How well do I know my characters?

I stumbled across this blog: Novel Software by “The Novel Factory” and saw this post and couldn’t resist.

In the Ancient Guardians novel series I have quite a few characters that are loved by readers. I randomly selected one, and decided to answer questions about this character.

Harrison Oxley makes his debut in the first book of the Ancient Guardians series as a secondary character. He swiftly jumps out of the category (his personality) and has stolen the hearts of many readers with his sarcasm, humor and witty nature. As the series progresses, Harrison’s point of view is written into the books. This begins in book three, ‘The Awakening,’ and he loves every minute of the spotlight. Readers have often referred to him as their favorite bad/good boy! Okay, enough back story…let’s answer some questions about Mr. Harrison Oxley!

 

The Ultimate Character Questionnaire (156 questions)
This character questionnaire has been collated from a variety of sources. It has been split into categories to try to make it more manageable, but this categorisation is far from perfect and lots of the questions could probably be in more than one category.

 

Basic

First name: Harrison
Surname: Oxley
Middle name: James
Nicknames: Harry
Date of birth: June 5, 1985
Age: 31 (Current Date)

Physical Appearance
Height: 6’3″
Weight: 240
Hair: Dark Blonde
Eyes: Blue
Distinguishing facial features? Mischievous Smile
Which facial feature is most prominent? Eyes
Which bodily feature is most prominent? Smile
Skin: Olive
Hands: Strong
Scars: Across chest (childhood accident)
Birthmarks? none
Physical handicaps? none
Type of clothes? Depends on where he is or assignment he’s on while on duty.  In his realm, he is usually dressed in trousers, waistcoat, tailcoat, and muslin shirt. On Duty: Most of the time a dark 3 piece suit.
How do they wear their clothes? clean, pressed and meticulously cared for unless an assignment advises otherwise.
What are their feet like? (type of shoes, state of shoes, socks, feet, pristine, dirty, worn, etc) Shoes always polished. Feet? Well taken care of.
Race / Ethnicity? Pemdai on earth we would see him as a white male.

Personality
What words or phrases do they overuse? Indeed
Are they more optimistic or pessimistic? Optimistic
What makes them laugh out loud? Someone making a fool of themselves would be an instant outburst for him.
How do they display affection? Sarcasm
How do they want to be seen by others? Don’t get me started. ‘The most handsome, well-rounded and enjoyable person to be around.’
How do they see themselves? Same as above.
How are they seen by others? Fun, exciting, adventurous, loving, daring and arrogant.
Strongest character trait. Quick wit
Weakest character trait. Loses temper without warning.
How competitive are they? 10 on a scale of 1-10
Do they make snap judgements or take time to consider? Both
How do they react to praise? enjoys it all and agrees with the one(s) praising him.
How do they react to criticism? It depends on the one criticizing him. Mostly ignores is or counters back to make the one criticizing him feel dumb for doing so.
What is their greatest fear? Losing someone innocent or dear
What are their biggest secrets? He won’t tell me.
What is their philosophy of life? “The meaning of life is to give it meaning.”
When was the last time they cried? It was documented for readers in the fourth and final book of the Ancient Guardians series: “The Reckoning.”
What haunts them? The fact that he could not prevent the situation that occurred prompting him to shed tears in the book, “The Reckoning.”
What will they stand up for? Honor
Are they indoorsy or outdoorsy? outdoorsy
What is their sinful little habit? Antagonizing others purposefully.
What sense do they most rely on? Mind
How do they treat people better than them? Harrison will respect any honorable individual that is better than him. At times and depending on the situation, he is known for using his quick wit to bring that individual to a state that is no longer ‘better’ than him. Most of this is always done out of good humor in his opinion.
How do they treat people worse than them? Someone in a bad position? Harrison has a heart of gold and would do anything to ensure they are happy and confident. An enemy? In his line of work, Harrison holds nothing back to bring an evil being to justice. Spiteful individuals always fall victim to his sarcastic wit, bringing them down and insulting them until they understand they are rude and their behavior is unacceptable.
What quality do they most value in a friend? Loyalty and good humor.
What do they consider an overrated virtue? In his realm? Marrying out of duty to a position.
If they could change one thing about themselves, what would it be? Saying the wrong thing at the wrong time.
What is their obsession? Battle training

Friends and Family
Is their family big or small? Who does it consist of? Immediate family: Father; King Nathaniel Oxley, Mother; Queen Madeleine Oxley, Sister; Princess/Duchess Lillian Oxley
What is their perception of family? You don’t have to be blood to be family.
Do they have siblings? Older or younger? Younger, Lillian Marie Oxley
Describe their best friend. His only cousin Levi. They grew up together and is one year older than Harrison. He is the emperor’s son and despite Harrison’s constant teasing him, the two are very close friends.
Ideal best friend? Someone who is loyal, honorable and can tolerate him.
Describe their other friends. Witty, tolerable, and adventurous.
Describe their acquaintances. Kings, Queens, and princesses.
Do they have any pets? He wouldn’t consider the Guardian horses he owns as pets, so none.

Past and Future
What was your character like as a baby? As a child? Happy baby, unruly child.
Did they grow up rich or poor? Rich
Did they grow up nurtured or neglected? nurtured
What is their greatest achievement? Guarding ‘The Key’
What was their first kiss like? Not something he would brag about.
What is the worst thing they did to someone they loved? Told her he loved her against his own power.
What advice would they give their younger self? Change your viewpoint on love.
What smells remind them of their childhood? Warm bread coming from the kitchens.
What is their best childhood memory? Learning to ride and tame a Guardian stallion at the age of eight.
What is their worst childhood memory? Falling into rushing waters and pinned underneath a rock after a branch he used as a bridge failed and snapped in half.
Did they have an imaginary childhood friend? No
When was the last time they were crushed with disappointment? When he failed to save a life/lives he had sworn to protect with his.
What past act are they most ashamed of? The way he first treated the woman who he would finally realize he had come to love.
What past act are they most proud of? Rescuing his uncle, Emperor Navarre.
Has anyone ever saved their life? Yes.
Strongest childhood memory? Playing with his cousin, Levi and close friend Julian Hamilton as if they were guardians when they still had much to learn.

Love
Do they believe in love at first sight? Does now.
Are they in a relationship? Married
How do they behave in a relationship? Wildly, but follows his wife’s rules like a loyal little puppy dog.
When did you character last have sex? Really? He didn’t tell me.
What sort of sex do they have? Whatever it is, I’m fairly sure agrees well with his wife.
Has your character ever been in love? Yes
Have they ever had their heart broken? Yes (With the only one woman of which he fell in love.)

Conflict
How do they respond to a threat? Reading the situation in order to process how to attack. Never panics.
Are they most likely to fight with their fists or their tongue? Both.
What is your character’s kryptonite? Harming those who are dear to him.
If your character could only save one thing from their burning house, what would it be? A life.
How do they perceive strangers? Does not fear them.
What do they love to hate? His wife being right.
What are their phobias? None
What is their choice of weapon? Longsword
What living person do they most despise? Sadly, his sister.
Have they ever been bullied or teased? Teased relentlessly by those closest to him.
Where do they go when they’re angry? Away from people
Who are their enemies and why? Any being seeking to harm people of Earth or other innocent beings. Greatest enemy are The Ciatrons, alien species from dimension of Ciatris.

Work, Education and Hobbies
What do they think about their current job? Highly enjoys it
What are their hobbies? Aggressive training, horseback riding, and sparring.
Educational background: Private tutor, Guardian training
Work experience/occupation: Instructor of Guardians, Commander of Guardians, Guarding “The Key”, Guarding humans and other innocent beings. Occupation: Warrior.

Favourites
What is their favourite animal? Guardian Stallion
What place would they most like to visit? He’s been everywhere
What is the most beautiful thing they’ve ever seen? That’s a hard one for him.
What is their favourite song? Anything Bob Seagar
Music, art, reading preferred? Music
What is their favourite color? Black
What is their password? Like he would tell me.
Favourite food: Red meat of any kind
What is their favourite work of art? Landscapes
Who is their favourite artist? his cousin Elizabeth
What is their favourite day of the week? Monday (Because everyone hates it)

Possessions
What is in their fridge: Ask his staff
What is on their bedside table? A lamp his wife picked out
What is in their car? Communication devices
What is in their bin? Boots
What is in their purse or wallet? Fake ID’s, cash, and passports.
What is in their pockets? Knife, loose change and communication device
What is their most treasured possession? A carved wooden arrow he made himself and gave to his wife. He always believed it to bring him good luck in dangerous situations.

Values

What do they think is the worst thing that can be done to a person? Wrongfully accused.
What is their view of ‘freedom’? Living without feeling a need to impress anyone physically or mentally.
When did they last lie? Good question!!!
What’s their view of lying? AND I QUOTE…Sometimes lying might be the better option!
When did they last make a promise? Everyday
Did they keep or break their last promise? Keep

Daily life
What are their eating habits? Regularly
Do they have any allergies? No
Describe their home. Lavish brick home, close to Levi’s estate and Pasidian Palace.
Are they minimalist or a clutter hoarder? minimalist
What do they do first thing on a weekday morning? Aggressive battle training and workout.
What do they do on a Sunday afternoon? Reflect and enjoy family.
What do they do on a Friday night? Every night is a friday night
What is the soft drink of choice? Coke
What is their alcoholic drink of choice? Don’t get him started.

Miscellaneous
What is their character archetype? (Innocent, Orphan, Hero, Caregiver, Explorer, Rebel, Lover, Creator, Jester, Sage, Magician, Ruler) Hero/Jester/rebel
Who is their hero? Grandfather Alexander James Oxley
What or who would your character dress up as for Halloween? A pumpkin. Ha! He’s not into the holiday.
Are they comfortable with technology? More than.
If they could save one person, who would it be? His wife
If they could call one person for help, who would it be? Levi
What is their greatest regret? See above
What is their perception of redemption? Proved through actions
What would they do if they won the lottery? Doesn’t play
What is their favourite fairytale? Is Robin Hood a fairytale?
What fairytale do they hate? I would guess Tarzan
Do they believe in happy endings? Doesn’t worry over them
What is their idea of perfect happiness? Being Content no matter the circumstance
What would they ask a fortune teller? To stop telling fortunes and let people live their lives in mystery due to the excitement of not knowing what the future holds.
If your character could travel through time, where would they go? That’s funny!
What sport do they excel at? Anything he sets out to do
What sport do they suck at? Nothing
If they could have a superpower, what would they choose? He already is quipped with the one thing he would choose: Ability to use 100% of his mind.

 

So there, that’s it! Hopefully I answered all of these correctly, because Harrison is the ‘only’ character in my book series that went behind my back and opened up a social media account!!!

This was truly fun and definitely a good test to see how well I know my characters. I give myself a 100%! A+++!

Until next time!

S.Morgan

Ancient Guardians: The Reckoning (Sneak Peek)

Here it is the sneak peek into the fourth and final book in the Ancient Guardians Series! While we wait for the release date on June 6th, I decided to share the “Introduction and First Chapter” for your enjoyment!

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Click on the highlighted link below to open the document.

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Pre-Order ‘The Reckoning’ today!

Barnes and Noble nook, Kobo, and Apple iBooks.