Food and Fantasy

From The Great Round Table of Fantasy Bloggers
Immortal
Let’s talk about food in fantasy. We eat when we’re depressed or lonely. We eat to celebrate holidays and rituals. Eating is a part of life just like seeking shelter and intimacy. And, though we often do it just for the fun of it, it’s definitely listed in the category of things we must do to survive. Quite simply we eat to live.

My favorite authors are the ones who manage to create men and women with the most human characteristics–men and women who enjoy roasting a yam over an open fire or sharing a pot of gumbo with a friend. These are the authors whose work I enjoy and the ones I take notes from to improve my own writing skills.

Food, I’ve realized, is part of the mosaic of a character’s life. Food in fantasy, in all fiction, is an extension of one’s plot–an extension of what is driving the novel.

To illustrate my point here are two excerpts from my first novel, Immortal.

Excerpt 1.
At exactly 8:00 he knocked on her door.

This time, Karla had dressed more casually in jeans and a sleeveless shirt, trimmed to reveal her ebony midriff. She wore hoop earrings, and a silver chain was wrapped about her belly. Joseph was dressed in jean and boots, his hair hanging loose about his shoulders.

The flat was decorated with paintings and glazed pottery, but little furniture. There was a futon, and a coffee table. Just outside the kitchenette, stood another table with two chairs. Colorful rugs decorated the wooden floors. Beyond the living area, he glimpsed a four poster bed.

“Did you have any trouble finding me?” Karla asked.

He shook his head. “Nope.” Especially since I spent last night across the hall.

One of her paintings drew Joseph’s eye: hanging on the wall beside the console, was an oil rendition of a dark woman: her eyes were closed and there was a look of rapture upon her face. An arm was wrapped about the neck of the Copper man standing behind her, his intertwined about her waist, his face bent towards hers.

She’s got good taste.

“You like it?”

“Very much; I can’t wait to read your stories.”

Karla averted her eyes. “The food’s ready.”

The table was loaded with vegetables, protein sautéed in buttered garlic and fresh bread. As Joseph sat down, Karla emerged from the kitchen with a carafe of red wine.

“I don’t drink. I’m sorry, I should have told you.”

“No problem, somebody in the building will drink it.” A tiny smile played about her lips. “I don’t drink either. I haven’t for years.” She put the wine back in the cold box, extracted two glasses of cold tea from her liquids machine, and placed them on the table.

Both could feel the tension mounting between them. They were moving into deep waters. Karla knew she must tell him about her dreams.

Excerpt 2.
There was a knock at the door and she jumped. Get it together girl, that’s the twins.

She walked into the living room, picked up her remote and pointed it at the entrance. It slid open and the eight-year-old twins,Carlos Jr. and Ashley, small and brown like their mother, ran inside. Ashley’s shoulder length braids were tied off with ribbons.

“Good morning Karla,” they sang in unison, hugging her.

“Good morning love bugs. What do you want for breakfast?”

”Waffles,” said Ashley.

Carlos Jr. flapped his hand at his sister. “You always want waffles. Make mine French toast.”

When Karla and the twins’ mother had first become friends, Tatiana and Carlos were both working nights, and she’d offered to make breakfast for their children during the week. That was two years ago. Now Tatiana worked as a beautician, although her mate still worked evening shifts at the metal emporium.

But fixing meals for the twins had become a habit Karla didn’t want to break. She was crazy about them, and Topaz’s food prices were next to nothing.

“Coming right up.” The dark woman took milk and breakfast pellets from her cold box, and slid the nuggets into a diamond shaped oven. In twenty seconds, they expanded with heat.

“Done,” the oven announced. The children sat at the table, just outside the kitchenette.

In these two very different passages food is one of the metaphors used to bring my characters together on a very basic and ultimately human level. And are our characters not human? If we prick them do they not bleed upon the printed page? So why shouldn’t they eat? Why shouldn’t they come together to celebrate life, to work out their problems, to enjoy each other’s company?

Indeed they must for the story to become real. For food, in life, brings us together for so many reasons. And art, real art, imitates life.

Valjeanne is the author of the SF/fantasy novels: Immortal, Immortal II: The Time of Legend, Immortal III: Stealer of Souls, and the steampunk novels Immortal IV: Collision of Worlds and The Switch II: Clockwork (includes books 1 and 2) and the space opera, Colony.

Valjeanne is a knight in the Traveling Round Table of Bloggers. She is also a graduate of Spelman College, NCCU and a member of the Carolina African American Writers’ Collective. She has been published under both Valjeanne Jeffers and Valjeanne Jeffers-Thompson. Her writing has appeared in: The Obamas: Portrait of America’s New First Family, from the Editors of Essence, The Ringing Ear: Black Poets Lean South, Pembroke Magazine, Revelry, Drumvoices Revue 20th Anniversary, and Liberated Muse: How I Freed My Soul Vol. I. She was also semi-finalist for the 2007 Rita Dove Poetry Award.

Valjeanne’s fiction has appeared in Genesis: An Anthology of Black Science Fiction, Griots: A Sword and Soul Anthology, LuneWing, PurpleMag, Genesis Science Fiction Magazine, Pembroke Magazine,Possibilities, 31 Days of Steamy Mocha, Griots II: Sisters of the Spear (in press), and Steamfunk! (in press). She works as an editor for Mocha Memoirs Press and is also co-owner of Q & V Affordable editing.

Preview or purchase her novels at her personal site.

Barnes and Noble

Amazon

And Sony ereaders and Itunes.

Read more from The Great Traveling Round Table of Bloggers

Immortality: A review by Charles Saunders

charles_saunders_photoimmortal 2
Immortal

This is an excerpt of a review of Immortal and Immortal II: The Time of Legend written by world renown writer Charles Saunders, creator of Sword and Soul, and author of the Imaro series, the Dossouye series and Damballa.

So without further aideu here is Charle’s amazing review: Immortality.

“Consider a world that is much like our own, but better in a ways that matter most, especially considering the ecological chaos, economic malaise and ethnic discontent.

Consider a world that is post-racial, but still acknowledges racial differences.

Consider a world in which shape-changing and sorcery co-exist with advanced technology.

Consider a utopia on the brink of disaster…

Author and poet Valjeanne Jeffers has considered all these things and more, and has synthesized them in the form of two novels: Immortal and Immortal II.

These are novels of magic and multiplicity. Their setting is New World Tundra, which may or may not be an alternate earth, or our earth in the future. The time is the year 3075 — four hundred years after a spasm of war, crime, and pollution came close to destroying the planet. In the wake of this warfare, known as the Time of Legend, Tundra’s population pulls itself back from the brink of destruction and transforms itself in a Great Society.

Here’s how Valjeanne describes it:

‘But in the year of our One 3075, war, crime and pollution didn’t exist.

Contamination of the environment was illegal. Recycling was mandated by planet law. Weapons had been outlawed and purged from New World Tundra.

Only a few remained on display in museums. Prisons had become behavioral clinics where inmates were taught the life skills they needed to be mainstreamed back into society.

It was illegal to have homeless living within one’s borders, and cities were punished with heavy fines if they didn’t house them in private living quarters.

Junkies were the exception to this rule, since so many of them lived in dormitories; and they were locked out if they missed curfew. It was forbidden for a citizen to be unemployed if he could work. Tundra law dictated that every able-bodied man and woman must be given a job, and it was forbidden to pay a citizen less than she needed to buy both necessities, and a few luxuries.

Racism and sexism were also relics that the New World had discarded during the Time of Legend, when everyone had been fighting to survive the holocaust. Then, they were luxuries the planet couldn’t afford.

Now, like the chemical waste that had once poisoned Tundra, they’d been forgotten.’

Race is still recognized on Tundra. But the labels are different. Blacks are ‘Indigos.’ Whites are ‘Fuchsias.’ Native Americans are ‘Coppers.’ Asians are ‘Ambers.’ Hispanics are ‘Bronzes.’ The words are different, but the melody lingers on.

Addictive drugs — an upper called ‘rush’ and a downer called ‘placid’– are legal in the New World. At the same time, admittance to government-sponsored rehabilitation clinics is free.

The protaganist of the Immortal novels is a young, Indigo woman named Karla. She works as a caretaker (healer) at a clinic called CLEAN (Clean Living Experiences and No Chemical Dependency). She’s a former addict who is now helping others to kick their habits.

Karla’s personal life should be as ideal as that of her society. But it isn’t. She is plauged by dreams and hallucinations involving a mysterious Indigo man, a seductive figure who seems to want to take her out of herself.

This dream-man is not a figment of Karla’s imagination. He is real, though his reality is not the material, rational, world of Tundra.

His name is Tehotep. His is Other. And he spells trouble, not only for Karla but also for the benevolent-but-rigid underpinnings of the New World.

Change is the operative word. Karla and her new friend and lover, a Copper artist named Joseph, discover that they can transform themselves into werewolf-like creatures that are immensely fast and powerful, but retain their human intelligence. In the meantime, Tehotep is collecting acolytes and remaking them into nightmarish monsters that obey him without question…

In Immortal II, the shape-shifting lovers find themselves transported to the Tundra of the past…the Tundra of the Time of Legend, ‘The most violent era Tundra had ever known.’

The wars are not only occurring on Tundra. There are another ones as well, between Tehotep and beings known as Guardians–and an incarnation of Karla from another time…

The Immortal novels are multi-racial, multi-cultural, and multi-dimensional. Valjeanne is adept at writing about relationships,everyday activities, conflicts, near-future technology technology, and mind-boggling magic. She can also snap a plot twist on par with the best of the thriller writers. These books are a wonder and a pleasure.”

To read this review in its entirety vist Charles Saunders site and click on Recommended and then Immortality. And check out the rest of Charles’s awesome reviews.

To purchase or preview my titles visit my site
Amazon
Barnes and Noble.
Or smashwords

Sir Charles Saunders’s Spectacular Review



The legendary Charles Saunders (The acclaimed Imaro and Damballa series) just dropped a spectacular review of my novels, Immortal IV: Collision of Worlds and The Switch II: Clockwork. And I am on cloud nine :)!! Here’s an excerpt:

Valjeanne “Sister Moon” Jeffers continues to rise in the ranks of speculative-fiction authors with the release of her latest novels in her interlocking Immortal/Switch series. her writing weaves vivid threads of science fiction, fantasy, horror and erotica into patterns as intricate as those in a kente cloth… read the rest here (click Recommended then Sister Moon Rising)

And you can read excerpts from both novels on wordpress or my personal site

Immortal IV: Collision of Worlds/Valjeanne Jeffers

BookCoverPreviewimmortal4BookCoverPreviewimmortaliv
Chapters 1 and 2

1/Prologue

They were riding the steam train again, sitting behind Ripple, the edges of their seats smudged with black and velvet. The train lurched to a stop, and the doors slid open.
Beyond was utter darkness.
“This is our stop!” Ripple shouted. Even as he spoke these words he had the queer feeling of time doubling over.
The Copper man leaped up and ran to the exit, Karla and Joseph at his heels. They jumped down and the metal doors slammed shut behind them.
Outside, the station’s wood was rotted, the doors boarded up. The windows were dusty and smashed—the few remaining shards of glass, hanging like broken teeth. Ahead, the train disappeared into the fog.
“Hurry up!” Ripple shouted, “Or we’ll be trapped here!”
Another wave of déjà vu washed over him, this one so strong it made him dizzy. Nevertheless he took off running past the train into the fog. A mist shrouded forest stood in the distance, and he sprinted toward it. Karla and Joseph followed.
Time slowed to a crawl. They moved in slow motion now—struggling through a syrupy wave of moments…seconds…minutes…
“Keep running!”
Joseph reached out and took Karla’s hand.
And they began to change.
Ripple became a black wolf, his fur streaked with silver. Karla, a smaller dark lupine, Joseph, a wolf with burnt sienna fur—running through the towering redwoods, oaks and weeping willows.
Thin light pushed through the treetops and made splotchy patches at their feet. Mist floating in the air, thick and cloying.
Ripple vanished.
“What’s happening!” Karla cried out, glancing wildly around.
Joseph took a few aimless steps forward, squeezing his head between his hands. Grandfather—! Grandfather where are you!”
The sound of approaching hoofs echoed through the forest. A creature ran toward them, weaving easily between the trees. From the waist up, she was a fetching Bronze woman of twenty or so odd years with sepia skin.
But her torso curved out into a burgundy mare’s hindquarters, her hair curled about her shoulders, her small breasts cupped by a silver bustier.
The last time they’d seen a centaur, had been during the Time of Legend. Then the female centaur had been a Guardian.
But they sensed that this creature was no ally. An aura of malevolence floated about her, as cloying as the fog.
“Hello!” she said, her lashes fluttering prettily above her green eyes. “I haven’t seen you here before. Are you lost?”
They stared at her. Joseph opened his mouth. For several seconds nothing came out. “We uh—my grandfather came in with us.” he stammered.
Her eyes glittered balefully. “You mean Ripple? Yes, I know where he is. He’ll be staying with us now. And you have business elsewhere.”
“Wha-what are you saying?” Karla gasped moving closer to Joseph.
But he was melting away in her arms.
She screamed horribly—clutching at the floating flesh that was her lover.
The centaur galloped past her into the woods, her mocking laughter mixing with the Indigo woman’s cries.

* * *

The New World awoke to a roaring wind, light blazed from the mirror—swallowing the planet—a churning, savage vortex. Tundra’s inhabitants cried out, as their flesh bled from their bones like wet clay.
The world shuddered.
And was still.

2/Stranger
Joseph came to on a carpeted floor and lifted his head to gaze at her. She stood with her back pressed against the wall, her face twisted in fear.
“Karla?”
She looked down at him: a slender, dark woman with a long face, high cheekbones and full lips. She was dressed in a sheer nightgown. Wavy tresses spilled over the Indigo woman’s shoulders.
“Who are you?”
He rose from the thick carpet: a tall, muscular man with reddish-brown skin. His thick hair was gathered into a ponytail at the nape of his neck.
“I’m Joseph…”
“You called me ‘Karla.’ Why? That’s not my name. I’m Sonya. Where did you come from?”
His eyes searched her face. “I don’t know.”
Karla…The name was like a caress. It reminded him of a song—the words forgotten, but the melody etched upon his heart.
Joseph tore his eyes away from her and scanned the bedroom. To his right was a high bed with a canopy. A wardrobe sat beside it. Across from him, stood a vanity table and mirror. Filigreed lamps were arranged here and there about the room.
The furniture spoke to him of antiquity—of an older, bygone age. Yet above the vanity hung a triangular clock, full of visible cogs and dials and encased in metal. It was ticking loudly.
The Copper man looked behind him, at the tall mirror encased in a delicately carved frame.
“I think…I think I came from inside your mirror.”
Her eyes shot to the glass, and a curious mixture of fear and longing played over her face.
“From my mirror?” He nodded. “Ho-how did you do that?”
How indeed? “I’m not sure.”
BAM! BAM!
“It’s one of the servants! Hide there!” She pointed behind the bed.
Sonya cracked the door. A plumb face peered inside. “Yes, Elsie?
“Are you alright, mum?”
“I’m fine.”
“But I heard you scream!” Despite her humble demeanor, Elsie sounded annoyed not to know what was troubling Sonya, and not to be confided in. She pushed at the door—a polite but insistent way of trying to get inside.
The young woman put her weight against the door. “I had a nightmare.”
“Would you like me to stay with you?” Elsie said imploring; but the plea didn’t reach her eyes, they were cold and hard.
“No. Goodnight.”
In the next moment, Sonya’s face was above him. “You can get up, she’s gone now.” She turned away from him, pulled a robe from her dresser and slipped it on.
“You can’t stay here. Someone’s bound to find you.” She picked up a huge candle from the vanity, and lit it. “I was just about to go downstairs for some hot chocolate and biscuits. Would you like some?”
He nodded. “Alright.” Sure. Why not? Your mirror spit me out and I don’t know who I am. You don’t know either. But yeah, I’d love to share some chocolate and biscuits. An ironic smile curled about his lips, as he followed her out of the room.
Sonya watched him out of the corner of her eye. I should just scream again and have him dragged out of here. But…I’ve seen him before.
They came out into a long hallway, and made their way to staircase that split the hall in half. The carpet was a deep wine color, and oil lamps were interspersed along the walls.
Paintings of citizens wearing top hats and derbies hung from the walls; some with high buttoned coats and collars, others with walking canes. Still others wore glass monocles, and dresses with cinched waists, bustles and petticoats.
Many also sported curious short metal tubes with gears, strapped to their waists. Those are firearms!
And at this, a sense of wrongness swept over him.
Joseph glimpsed more of the portraits across the stairwell. All at once he realized that he was dressed in a likewise fashion. He wore a jacket with wide lapels, a high collar shirt and stovepipe pants. But he had no weapon. And for this, he felt strangely grateful.
Downstairs, Sonya led him past the staircase, and to the right to the kitchen. While he sat at the wooden table, she rummaged about in the cabinet, sneaking glances at him as she did so. At length, she pulled down glass canister of chocolate and sugar, and set them beside the gas stove.
“Do you know what you were doing,” she asked, “you know just before?” He shook his head.
The Indigo woman turned a knob on the stove, and held the candle to the eye until the flame caught. She blew out the candle, poured water into a tin, coffee pot and put it on the unit to heat.
Sonya fished biscuits from the glass container on the table. “Well, you must remember something.”
Joseph leaned forward, his face twisted in concentration. “Very little… I remember being with you—well, somebody that looked like you. But I don’t think we were here.”
Sonya gazed down at him for another long moment, then turned away, pouring hot water into two mugs and stirring chocolate and sugar into them.
“Come on,” she said, handing him one. “Let’s eat in the breakfast room, I can think better in there, and the servants are less likely to stumble across us.”
She led him back out into the hall, past the staircase into an adjacent alcove. They sat in the low chairs, a small table between them. To their right, an entire wall had been crafted of glass.
Beyond it, he glimpsed an alien city.
Sonya sipped her chocolate. “You’ll have to get out of here, you know. If my father finds you, he’ll turn you over to the enforcers.”
Joseph looked confused. “What’s an enforcer?”
“The peacekeepers. They make sure we citizens don’t break the law,” she smirked, “nobody can break any laws but them. If they detain you, they’ll stick you with an indentured family and keep you there—maybe for as long as ten years.”
I don’t like the sound of that.
“Or they’ll make you fight in the wars,” she went on, “After your service, municipal lets you start to pay your bond off. That could take another two years.”
“Sounds like slavery to me,” Joseph said dryly.
A hard smile curled about her lips. “Yeah, I guess it is. You got ID? Look in your jacket.”
He patted his coat. He pulled a folded parchment from his inside pocket.
“Let me see that,” Sonya unfolded it to reveal an ink drawing of him. Beneath it a calligraphy inscription read:

Joseph 22833
Race: Copper
Eyes: Brown
Hair: Black
Height: 6 feet 0”
Weight: 200
Profession: Artisan

The bottom of the page was stamped with the wax insignia of a T.
“You’re an artist! Well, that’s a start. Too bad you can’t remember anything else. But it’s still dangerous for you to go wandering around Topaz with amnesia.”
Topaz. This name too, sparked a faint memory. “That’s where I am?” he asked.
“That’s where you are. And if they pick you up—even with amnesia, even with papers―they’ll throw you in an asylum. It’s where they put crazy people. But not all the time.”
Sonya chewed at her bottom lip. “I’m betrothed to a man twice my age. When I told my father I wouldn’t marry him, he threatened to commit me.”
“Do you have any bills? If an enforcer stops you, you might be able to bribe him into letting you go.”
Joseph’s head spinning was from all the foreign information being thrown at him. He reached into his pants pocket, and pulled forth a small bundle of rectangular bills.
A man’s face was engraved in the center of each one… a cruel face crafted of angels and sharp edges, and stamped with the letter T.
Joseph tapped the image with his finger. “Who is he?”
Sonya handed the currency back to him, with a trembling hand. “Tehotep, my betrothed. He rules the empire.”
The Copper man stared down at the face a moment longer, before shoving the bills into his pocket. Once more, vague formless images tugged at his memory.
“I want you to go to my friend Joan’s house. You’ll be safe there. When you get there, offer to pay your way. She’s always strapped for bills…It’s near morning, you better get going.”
Sonya led him out of the alcove to a heavy oak door. She opened the door onto a tree lined street. Three houses down, it dipped down into a steep hill. Ten feet away, a trolley car idled on the tracks in the middle of the lane; puffs of steam poured from the corkscrew pipe at the front of the car.
She followed his eyes to the trolley. “It’s safer for you to walk, sometimes enforcers ride the train,” and pointed to the incline. “Go down that hill, and follow the street for a mile. Take a right at Culpepper. Travel another two miles and make a right at Mulberry.”
“Then just keep walking. You can’t miss it. Joan’s building is 2000 Mulberry. It sits between two others. Cobblestones lead up to her door. Her apartment is H-12; it’s upstairs.”
Sonya lifted her arm to display a bracelet with objects hanging from it. “Here help me get this off… Show her this and tell her I sent you.”
“Give me your papers too.” She carried the sheet to the end table behind them; then dipped the feathered quill into an ink well, turned the paper over and scribbled on the back.
The Indigo woman waved the paper a few times to dry the ink. “Give this to her too.”
Joseph hesitated, he was loathe to part company with this mysterious woman. He felt connected to her somehow.
“Will I see you again?”
Sonya smiled. “Count on it. Joan is my best friend.”

* * *

Outside he turned the paper over.
She’d written one line.
Look at his arm.

Copyright Valjeanne Jeffers 2012 all rights reserved

Contact me for purchase here

Also available at amazon and barnes and noble

Immortal/Chapter 1 (excerpt)


1/ SPECTER

SHE was in the basement again. It was pitch black, the only
illumination a glowing, quarter moon etched into the floor.
A burst of light split the
darkness, and she moaned
low in her throat.

Please, I don’t want to see anymore…I don’t want to look.

Yet her feet moved of their own volition, inching toward the
mark…and the twisted bundle now lying in its center. A man was curled
upon the stone. He wasn’t breathing, and his limbs were tiny and
withered. But she knew he wasn’t dead.

He wasn’t human.

The daemon opened his eyes. I’ve been sleeping. But for how long?

He could feel his arms and legs, but the sensations were muted as
if they’d traveled from a great distance.

Then he remembered. He’d been imprisoned – snatched from his
body by the magic that had trapped him here. Even now sleep, like a
delicious drug, threatened to overtake him. But he fought it away.
How many centuries would pass while he slept?

A doorway appeared in his mind and just beyond it, a tattered
clump of flesh and bone…

Karla’s eyes flew open – the scream caught in her throat. It’s just
a nightmare. I’m Ok. I’m here now, at home.

The Indigo woman turned her head to look at the bedroom
console. Six-thirty glowed on the screen. She scooted out of bed, picked
up a remote from the nightstand and turned off the alarm.

Karla walked across the wooden floor of her living area into a
kitchenette. A press of her fingers on the first sphere of a triangular pod
started coffee brewing.

She filled a cup with chicory, walked back into the living area and
pushed the second button on her remote, activating a blue panel beside
the window. Jazz music filled the apartment. Like her bedroom console
the unit kept time, transmitted holographic images and played tapes.

Using the third button, she opened the curtains. Curled upon her
futon, the Indigo woman watched as the illuminae changed Topaz’s
violet sky into a mellow shade of peach. She thought of the dreams.

For as far back as Karla could remember, she’d had them.
Otherworldly, exquisite and always with an unsettling clarity so
different from the normal phantasms she read about. When I eat, I wake
up full – and stay that way until lunchtime. If somebody hits me, it
hurts like hell…

And her dream lover left her limp with satisfaction, even after she
awoke, sure he was still beside her.

At night Karla wrote them down, pouring all of her fears and
desires into the notebooks. She spent hours in the library, reading stories
of reincarnation and demonic possession, searching for answers. She’d
found them too – dozens of them. But none could satisfy the yearning
that burned inside her.

Every time she closed her eyes to sleep they beckoned, calling to
her. Mornings, she awoke like a swimmer who’d been underwater for too
long, grasping for the fabric of reality – moaning with pleasure or
trembling with exhilaration.

One night they’re going to swallow me whole. I’ll never wake
up or maybe I’ll just fall through to whatever’s on the other side…and
this new one, something’s different about it. I know the others but this
one – this one scares me so bad I’m afraid to sleep.

“What time is it?”

The top left knob of her console blinked. “The time is 7:00
am,” a pert, female voice replied.

Seven o’clock! I’d better hustle! Karla gulped down her coffee,
and hurried back into the bedroom to dress.

Tehotep watched the tall, slender woman thumb through her
closet. He wasn’t invisible, only dim. As long as he stayed in the
shadows,she couldn’t see him. But noise couldn’t be cloaked by magic.

The Indigo woman tossed a red knit, shirt and jeans on the bed,
slipped off her pajamas and walked into the bathroom. As she stepped
into the shower, the nozzle automatically clicked on, spraying her body
with water. He followed, standing just beyond the doorway …

Karla finished bathing, and Tehotep quickly moved back into the
shadows – all the while devouring her with his eyes. Her skin, dewy with
moisture, looked like melting chocolate her nipples, blackberries.

She toweled off her full breasts and long legs and he licked his
lips imagining the things he would do with her – to her – the endless
perversions he’d force her to submit to. Things she’d come to enjoy,
when she tried to please him.

The young woman walked into the bedroom. He watched her
pull up her panties, hook her bra, slip her arms into the straps. Image
after image flooded his mind. Tehotep felt himself harden; a soft groan
escaped his lips…

Karla froze then stared into the corner facing her bed. It’s only a
bunch of dirty clothes, you’re hearing things!

In that instant he appeared: an Indigo man with full lips, slanting
onyx eyes and a shaven head. Voluminous garments hung from his
muscular frame. Their eyes locked, and she gasped in recognition. The
dark man smiled, nodded his head…

And vanished.

Karla gazed at the pile of laundry – all that remained of him –and wondered if she’d lost her mind. With trembling hands she finished
dressing her thoughts scurrying about like rats in a maze.

It’s him! I didn’t imagine it! He was here, but that’s impossible –!
There was a knock at the door and she jumped. Get it together
girl, that’s the twins.

Copyright Valjeanne Jeffers 2009 all rights reserved

Immortal/Chapter 1/excerpt


SHE was in the basement again. It was pitch black, the only illumination a glowing, quarter moon etched into the floor. A burst of light split the darkness, and she moaned low in her throat. Please, I don’t want to see anymore…I don’t want to look. Yet her feet moved of their own volition, inching toward the
mark…and the twisted bundle now lying in its center. A man was curled
upon the stone. He wasn’t breathing, and his limbs were tiny and
withered. But she knew he wasn’t dead.

He wasn’t human.

The daemon opened his eyes. I’ve been sleeping. But for how long? He could feel his arms and legs, but the sensations were muted as if they’d traveled from a great distance. Then he remembered. He’d been imprisoned – snatched from his
body by the magic that had trapped him here. Even now sleep, like a
delicious drug, threatened to overtake him. But he fought it away.

How many centuries would pass while he slept? A doorway appeared in his mind and just beyond it, a tattered clump of flesh and bone…
Karla’s eyes flew open – the scream caught in her throat. It’s just a nightmare. I’m Ok. I’m here now, at home.