At the Bradbury Institute, a private organization dedicated to the study of magic and the occult, adventure and romance are the best benefits – and danger is inescapable.
The Gateway Forest is the home of the institute’s greatest secrets and most important mission. For the Yule festivities, two visitors will arrive through the most active of the Gates, one welcome, one bringing a secret message.
Eve Kane, Bradbury’s newest member, is thrilled to finally learn the truth about the mysterious forest surrounding the institute. Soon she finds herself on the other side of a Gate, a pawn caught in a family feud between two powerful spellcasters.
For the past three years, Bradbury has been a refuge for Pete Cadkin. Now his attraction to Eve offers him a glimpse of a possible future. When his horrific past catches up with him and puts Eve in the crosshairs, he’s forced to confront his worst nightmares and she will make a snap decision with far-reaching consequences.
Under the Never Never’s Long Night Moon, everything will change.
One of the nice things about self-publishing is that everything happens on my schedule. So when stuff happens and I don’t have time to post about a new release for a little bit, the only person to get upset is me. And since Bradbury is something I write for fun, I’m just not going to stress too much over the business side of things on this series. What all this means is: I got the second Bradbury uploaded to retailers but am just now getting my site updated. Oops. Here’s the page for Long Night Moon, with the first chapter and buy links and all that good stuff.
If that seems like my attitude about publishing Bradbury is a bit too casual, you’re probably right. Bradbury started out as something I wrote for fun, that didn’t have to conform to any genre rules or publishing conventions. The series has been through some twists and turns, including being under contract by a publisher that went out of business before Bradbury could be published. That was not the most fun experience to go through and after I got my rights reversion I decided to take Bradbury back to its original purpose – a place for me to have fun. A big part of that fun is not stressing over the publishing aspect, so I just write and publish the novellas as I feel like it. It’s nice to enjoy the creative aspect of writing without the stress and anxiety of how the publishing side of things is supposed to work.
I’ve already started the third Bradbury novella, though I have no projection for how long it will take to write and prep for publication. I’m going to look into using Createspace to bundle two novellas into one paperback. It would be nice to have these in print, if I can figure out the formatting.
The first chapter of Long Night Moon is on the book’s page. Here’s an excerpt from later in the story that sets up subsequent events nicely –
“You should come over and watch it with me sometime.”
Nothing in his voice made it sound like anything but a casual invitation. His demeanor was still relaxed, almost open. Eve would have thought nothing of it except for the flush of warm energy that wrapped around her head to toe, a tease that matched the upticked corner of his mouth. It fanned across her nerve endings, spreading a feather-light pleasure through her.
Oh. Em. Gee. “Uh, sure.”
In addition to learning more about reading objects Eve had also begun to study projecting energy. She’d done this quietly, finding books read on the subject in the Archive and working with Jean-Pierre. Still in the early stages of exploring what she could do, Eve hadn’t discussed it openly yet. Pete had no idea. He would surely be surprised if she was able to send some of that warm sensual energy back to him. Letting her eyes unfocus, she concentrated on the sensation, willing it to expand and reach back to him in a slow languid stroke.
Pete gasped, eyes widening. He lurched forward and grabbed his coat from the back of the chair, covering his lap with it. “Stop it! Oh god.”
Horrified, Eve used a quick grounding technique to stop the energy. “I’m sorry! Are you…uh, are you okay?”
Half-crouched over the table, Pete ran a hand through his hair, covering his face for a long moment. When he finally removed his hand Cranky Pete was back, scowling and stone-faced. “Don’t ever do that again! Shit, especially not in public.”
“I’m sorry! I thought you were flirting with me and I wanted to flirt back.” Finding a rock to crawl under seemed like a great idea.
“I was flirting with you. But what you did – you need to learn to control that before you go whipping it out.”
Now it was Eve’s turn to cover her face. Embarrassment boiled a scalding path straight back to horrific memories of the awkward teenager she’d been years ago. She couldn’t stand to look at Pete, or even be at the table with him. Mumbling about the ladies room, she fled like a pathetic coward.
Hopefully she’d find a gateway to another world in a bathroom stall.