Thursday, March 28, 2013

Readers Artwork

I've been lucky enough to receive photos and artwork readers wanted to share, which were either inspired by my stories, or related to them.  I'm sharing them now...

This is a picture of Declan Sabre in European Werewolf form by Stephanie Hanlon.  You can find more of her wonderful work at

Thanks to Alice Lovell-Young for this clever pic :-)

This was made by Niina who posted the link to this pic under 'Claimed' here on this blog and here's the address for her site so you can get a better look at the pic and read her review:
These photos were taken by Derek Gramin (including the one underneath which he added the wolf leaping across) using his camera.  With the second pic below, he added the wolf as we don't have any wolves in Australia (only Tassie Devils and Dingoes) ;-)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

“However no-one talks of a female Lokoti Werewolf because to outsiders, there’s no such thing.”

(Excerpt of Sororate Chapter Two)


6th August, 2226


Three days later, the family as well as the tribe, attended my cousin’s funeral on the Holy Grounds before the Sacred Totems.  I clung to Declan’s arm through the service and it was like my mate literally held me up.  The Tribal Elders sang the funeral chant as the pyre burned the body wrapped in the woven funeral shroud, as Phoenix’s progeny looked on. 

After the service, the tribe split up to go their separate ways as did most of the Elders, to leave the body to burn overnight.  Declan and I left with Chiron and his family for the wake at the old Riverclaw house.  The fourteen other members of the pack and their wives – the ones that hadn’t passed away from old age – came to share food and drink with their First whilst reminiscing about their fallen.

Everyone brought a dish or bottle of soda to share and Declan had made three large plates of goodies.  On one serving plate sat an antipasto mix complete with salami, marinated mushrooms and smoked oysters; on another sat Capsicum and Potato Frittata as well as on the third, Bacon and Olive Cakes.   The antipasto plate he had put together today but the other dishes he cooked up the night before. 

When he made them, I sat up on the bench in the kitchen to watch.  It became the custom in our marriage for most of our discussions to happen over food and this way, I also got to sample what he was cooking.  Declan often interrupted me in the middle of conversation to allow me a taste of what he was preparing.  Last night, this reoccurred and I relished the deliciousness of the samples.  From seeing how quickly the plates of food emptied, it became evident everyone else thought so too.  

In the beginning of the Wake, I was sitting next to Sharon who was busily gossiping to another two wives.  However I started to tune out during discussions of school fees or the best nappy rash treatment.  My eyes wandered over to my husband who was nursing a small plate of nibblies, whilst telling Chiron, Stone and Forrest Riverclaw, as well as Meadow Shallow Water and lastly, Jake Wisetail about our altercation in China. 

“Excuse me,” I stood up to the women’s surprise when my departure interrupted their conversation.  “Er, it’s pack business.”

I used this excuse often, which the women never minded since I was a member.  They watched me cross over to Declan’s side and rest my arm about his waist.  He angled his plate of nibblies my way to share and I stole a marinated mushroom.  Then he moved the plate to his right hand to hold, as his left arm was slung over my shoulders.

“So the Asian Werewolves broke off their attack?”  Chiron double checked.

“Uh huh.”  His Second confirmed.  “I don’t think they’ll be tracking us back here.”

“Are you a hundred percent certain of this?”  Meadow spoke as the concerned Medicine Man.

“Yup.”  Declan straightened.  “They stopped their pursuit.”

Chiron’s eyes momentarily flashed in my direction before he spoke to my husband. “Perhaps for the next couple of weeks, we should have a Werewolf run the borders of our land just to make sure we don’t have any surprises.”

But this got my back up and I said curtly, “But they’re not coming.  I don’t have any warning feelings as a Circulator.  I don’t foresee any further trouble from that clan or breed.”

Our First looked in my direction but for longer this time, before he said, “Let’s call it peace of mind.”

Just as I was about to argue this further, Declan spoke up, “It wouldn’t hurt.”

Then Forrest also sided with our First by volunteering, “I don’t mind doing a run tonight.”

“Then I’ll do a run tomorrow night.”  Stone agreed.

“I’ll go the night after.”  Meadow shrugged.

“Night four works for me.”  Jake Wisetail nodded amiably.

He was my cousin five times removed, from my father’s side of the family, who inherited Mum and Dad’s house with their evolution.  He also inherited Dad’s place in the pack by his Lokoti Werewolf DNA activating on the following full moon.  The same time Jake received my childhood home as a Housewarming present for he and his new wife, another adjustment had to be made when he had to take time off work to learn to control the bloodlust.

“Fine.”  I said coolly.  “I’ll do a run on the fifth night.”

However my husband and the rest of the male members of the pack didn’t look happy to hear that, and neither did our First.

“No Aunt B.”  He said seriously.  “Just as you weren’t permitted to patrol during the years of lawlessness after the War, nor can you do so now.”

“What?”  I objected.  “Why not?”

Declan rolled his eyes, “Don’t start this again.” 

But it was Meadow who spoke patiently, “There are humans in Alma who still whisper stories of male Lokoti Werewolves who helped the townspeople rid themselves of a bad element after the War.  However no-one talks of a female Lokoti Werewolf because to outsiders, there’s no such thing.”

“Except to a bunch of horny Asian Werewolves," my husband said unhappily before he turned back to Chiron.  “I think I should go back to China and finish what I started.  I’ll eat the other thirty who know about B.”

“Declan!”  I elbowed him sharply.  “Yeah, what a good idea to help the concept of living quietly; by embarking on another murderous rampage and placing a new vendetta on your head!”

Our First looked on his overprotective Second in the pack.  "No Uncle, there’ll be no further Asian Werewolf blood spilt.  Unless of course they come onto our territory then you can unleash your wrath.  But according to Aunt B, it’s unlikely.”

“Then if it’s unlikely, it should be OK if I go for a run around our borders.”  I tried again.

“Yeah, what a good idea of the concept of no such thing as a female Lokoti Werewolf existing, if a townsperson from Alma catches sight of you.”  Declan repeated sarcastically.

“Oh shut up!”  I rolled my eyes as I stepped out from under his arm.


Saturday, March 2, 2013

“Your aura has faded.”

(Excerpt of Sororate Chapter Two)

The time was approaching 10 PM when we left the Riverclaw’s and went home.  Declan powered down his vehicle in the garage before turning my way.  He opened his mouth to say something, but he hesitated to look on concerned.  

“What?”  I wondered. 

“Your aura has faded.”  He remarked unhappily.  “How about I make us some fettuccine carbonara with garlic bread?”

I knew he was trying to cheer me up, but I felt tired and emotionally wrung out.

“Nah, it sounds like too much of a hassle to cook up something complicated this late.”  I frowned.  “How about just something on toast?”

“What about bacon, eggs, grilled tomato, fried mushrooms, hash browns and toast?”

“Now we’re talking.”  I couldn’t help but to smile.  “I’ll see if the crop of tomatoes in the greenhouse are ready and check on the rest of the plants.”

We both hopped out of his pick up truck at the same time and whereas he went into the house via the front door; I walked around the small building to the smaller one behind, which was constructed of glass.

Our greenhouse wasn’t that large but it had numerous shelves which held planters full of different vegetables and herbs.  The planters on the floor had the taller plants, like tomatoes, cucumber, capsicum, celery, zucchini and squash.  The shelves above had lettuce, radish, carrots, broccoli and cauliflower.  Then the small pots in between grew parsley, chives, oregano, thyme, rosemary, lemongrass, coriander and garlic and we even had a small chilli bush. 

As our food producing plants took the most room, the back right corner had Declan’s orchids on display on a triangular set of metallic shelves.  He had pink, purple, white, orange and yellow varieties, which he paid close attention to.  Upon inspection, the flowers were thriving just as the other plants were which means our Great x4 Grandnephew would live.  I giggled at my mate’s temper which could still scare people and in particular, our human relatives.

Just as I moved away to gather some tomatoes, something caught my eye.  I stopped and turned around to lean in closer, at the pot which was sitting on the floor in front of the orchids. 

The plant was withered and the flower which used to peak out from the top, was long gone.  The soil in the pot was a combination of red and black dirt.  The red soil was from Mars coupled with the black from Alaska.  The plant was the Martian Dandelion that my father gave to me, the day that the Circulate HQ on Mars was destroyed and my parents left for the space time continuum.

“Oh no…” I sunk to my knees to get a better look.  I picked up the drooping stalk with the dead flower bud, to see that the leaves were shrivelling too.  “Oh no…” my eyes refilled with tears as my heart sank.  I knew there was nothing I could do as the plant too was on its way into the afterlife.  “Declan!”

Within a minute, my mate came out the back door and headed down the small garden path towards the greenhouse. 

“Yeah?”  He poked his head through the open doorway.  He looked around at the healthy plants as if he were making sure we weren’t returning to ruined produce.  “What’s up?”

“Declan…” I pointed at the dying dandelion, “…look.”

He came into the greenhouse and knelt beside on the cement floor. “Oh," he frowned as he looked on our last piece of Mars which was fading fast.  His large hand moved towards it and he gently examined the shrivelled leaves with his fingertips before he sighed out, “I don’t think there’s anything we can do.”

“Frickin’ hell!”  I cursed.  “First the Martian Circulate HQ gets blown up, then my parents and my Calculator evolves to the space time continuum and now the Martian flower also bites the dust?!”

“And your cousin died today.”  He put in.  “Talk about, ‘when it rains it pours’.”

“Oooh!”  I fumed.  “We did everything right!  We watered it and talked to it and we were careful about fertilizers and whatever else.”

“Well B, it is from another planet.”  My husband shrugged.  “Maybe it needs Martian conditions?”

“But the vegetation on Mars died out!”

“So there you go, it was doomed from the start.”  He rested his hand on my back and gave it a sympathetic rub.

“Oh…!”  I whined as I deflated almost as much as the flower did.

“C’mon baby,” he stood up and then pulled me to my feet.  “Let’s get some dinner into you and I’m sure there’s another stash of Nutella in the kitchen somewhere.”

“No.”  I sighed wearily.  “I don’t want anymore Nutella today.”

“Shit.”  My mate suddenly went still and looked on in shock.  “I think hell just froze over.”

Playfully, I whacked him on the arm and turned to depart from the greenhouse.