Moon Killers (Shadow Series #3) : episode 1

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Happy Halloween! To celebrate I’m releasing a portion of Moon Killers in installments to thank you. So on this All Hallow’s Eve, come sit by the fire with me. Here’s a hot cup of apple cider. Are you all set? Let’s read the first episode of book three of The Shadow Series together…

When something feels wrong, it usually is.

My boyfriend Drew places his hand on my cheek. We’re lying next to each other in the end zone at the high school’s dark, empty football stadium. Blades of grass tickle a warning all along my spine––Drew and I aren’t alone. I rustle in place, trying to shake the feeling that someone is out there in the dark, watching us. Instead, I lose myself in Drew’s gaze, caring and not caring that he’s picked tonight to tell me everything––finally. When he leans in close, I close my eyes, feel his lips on mine and melt in his arms. He kisses me as if he’s lived a thousand lifetimes and discovered only love matters. But he will die. And I will not. Not for a very long time.

Nothing about Drew says he’s just begun his Last Life. Nothing about Drew has changed at all since I took his place as the Shadow Slayer. Girls still swoon over him, especially under the Friday night lights––where he can be found pulling off winning plays week after week. Most girls would die to just talk to him. I can’t believe he’s my boyfriend.

There are two main ways girls like to stalk Drew. After a game, they flock in his wake when he and the other football players make a pit stop at the Snack Shack on their way to the locker room. The girls smile with their hot dogs or hot chocolate hot in their hands, and flip their hair ready for Drew––all dripping with Gatorade––to turn around and instantly fall in love with one of them. And when this fails, their backup plan is keeping a vigil in the football field parking lot with an eye on the locker room door. The boys, fresh from their showers, punch and joke their way to their cars. Said swooning girls walk around in circles, searching for rides they never missed. Most end up lingering by Drew’s baby blue Beemer with a can-you-help-me, I-missed-my-ride bat of their eyes, which can have the affect of bonding opportunistic girls to oblivious guys. Sometimes after a game, I stare at all the hair-flipping, eye-batting, stranded girls and wonder which one will become Drew’s girlfriend now that I’m the Shadow Slayer. Which of them will be the mortal girl he’ll date after me.

I know I don’t have a shot at being Drew’s girlfriend for very much longer anyway, even without the whole have-to-save-the-world-from-the-Shadows thing that will pretty much eat up all my free time for the next five hundred years. I mean it’s inevitable that he’ll wake up one day and be like, oh, ick what was I thinking. It’s not like he’s made me feel he’s doing me a favor by dating me or anything, in spite of our obvious violation of the Hot Factor Doctrine––Drew being a ten and me being a six. It’s way more complicated than the fact that doctrine dictates he should date up at least a few factors especially since there are plenty of female tens here at Oakdale Central High School. No, the reason I won’t be Drew’s girlfriend for long is that he’s mortal now. He’ll want, no make that need, a mortal girlfriend. He’ll need to live a real life. The life he’s dreamed about for centuries. The life he fought for. The life he slayed for. We can’t be together now that I’m the Shadow Slayer. One day soon, we’ll be separated forever. I shiver.

“Roxie, what’s going on?”

“What?”

“I’ve asked you over and over and you…I don’t know…it’s like you’re not even here.”

“I’m here. Now.” I manage a smile even though my heart’s breaking.

His smile fades and he pulls me in close to his chest.

“Will you wear my jersey to school tomorrow for luck?”

I nod. I like wearing his number. Eighteen is my new favorite number. “Sure, you know I will.”

“LT is double tough this year because their backup quarterback Anderson got a shot at starting and even though he’s just a sophomore he’s blowing every other quarterback away. If we’re going to win our division, we have to beat LT.”

It’s strange to hear Drew talking about division finals and beating LT as intensely as he once did about my destiny as Shadow Slayer and how I’d have to battle them. This mortal life is his now. So very different than mine. Being the best quarterback is what matters most to him now. I wish it could matter more to me. But my old life is sort of hollow. I’m in between worlds, not quite here.

The only thing that matters to me is moon killing. It’s the only way I’ll ever be able to gain an advantage over the Shadows. It’s the only way I’ll have a shot at my own Last Life. It’s the only way I’ll be able to save the world.

But, tomorrow’s game against LT is epic. It’s kind of cool how everyone at school, make that everyone in town, wants to beat them. We hate LT. I still don’t know why, it just is. Last year when I was a freshman, I had no idea exactly why we hated LT––Lyons Township High School, the high school a few towns over. And apparently, just being a few towns over is the only reason we need to hate them. It’s weird and doesn’t make sense but our hatred really just boils down to geography.

When you’re in high school you sort of have to accept things like archrivals. Before I met Drew last year, before I found out that I’m the Shadow Slayer, I thought freshman was tattooed on my forehead. Back then it seemed everyone around me knew I didn’t know anything about anything especially stuff I was supposed to automatically know, like LT being the enemy. It took me a long time to figure stuff out freshman year. Most of the reason I wasn’t a total loser freshman year was because Drew was my boyfriend.

to be continued….

Book 1, 13 on Halloween (free)

Book 2, Shadow Slayer

Want to know more about the series? Click here for playlists, dreamcasts, and book trailers

Shadow Slayer, book 2

Indie-licious Teaser Blog Hop! Teaser from Moon Killers (Shadow Series #3)

Moon Killers (Shadow Series #3) releases May 2013
Moon Killers (Shadow Series #3) releases May 2013

Here’s a little bit about the story:

After slaying her first Shadow as a freshman, Roxie expected sophomore year to be less epic. But this year she’ll discover it will take far more than her skills with a sword to win her ultimate reward, her Last Life. A human life. Roxie’s five-hundred-year reign as Shadow Slayer has just begun.

Interworld peace is a lot for a fifteen year old to handle. Slaying shadows is one thing, but now Roxie must face her biggest enemy yet. When Roxie’s Shadow influences her in tragic ways, she must master moon killing––a type of time travel––if she is to survive the Shadows bent on her murder.

But moon killing is tricky, and if Roxie isn’t careful she could destroy everything she so desperately wants to save, not to mention lose a chance at her Last Life. Moon killing’s thrill proves addictive, enchanting. When Roxie’s boyfriend Drew becomes more and more of a stranger and her world begins to crumble, she finds peace in her addiction. Now, moon killing could kill Roxie and she may be too heartbroken to care.

And here’s the teaser from Moon Killers:

“Shadows are at play,” Drew says staring at the moon.

A chill rushes over my body and I try to shake it off. The autumn wind kicks up leaves and swirls around us blowing cold, right through me. Drew takes off his letterman jacket and places it over my shoulders. I zip it up and lean into him. “Thanks,” I say. It seems impossible to warm up now. I hate the cold so much that I wallpapered my Chicago bedroom with palm trees. Lots and lots of palm trees.

Drew puts his arms around me. This is so normal. Him hugging me. Us standing here together, like a million other high school couples have done in this very spot for over a hundred years. He’s just a boy and I’m just a girl. I ignore my nerves. I pretend that nothing about this night scares me, especially Shadows at play.

Drew gives my hand a History Channel kiss and doesn’t even flinch in the cold. He stands defiant against it all red-cheeked wearing only a gray, v-neck sweater and jeans. But it’s not my favorite look for him. Even when he’s in jeans it makes him look even more like he was born to wear a tuxedo. He’s got that energy about him. Regal in a way no boy I’ve known could ever be.

I can’t wait any longer. It’s been torture just pretending like everything is fine, when it isn’t. It’s been agony waiting for the next battle, the next rupture between worlds. “If Shadows are at play, like you say, then it’s even more important that I know how to kill the moon, right?”

Drew kicks a spot in the grass over and over. Every time I confront him about what I must know, what I need to know, he always changes the subject. He’s sort of been in denial about training me, I guess. Educating me. He wants to forget that I’m the Shadow Slayer. For some reason, he’s having a hard time helping me learn what I have to know to fight off and survive the Shadows. To keep them at bay. So he’s just blown it off, wanting more than anything to keep things normal between us. To try to hang on to normal for as long as possible.

I guess I can understand that, after fighting Shadows for five hundred long years, Drew just wants a little peace. He wants to focus on his Last Life. But I can’t take it any more. I can’t just stay silent. He’s the only one who can teach me what I need to know. And he sucks at it. I take a deep breath and try and forget that I’m asking him this one more time, for the hundredth time. “Where are the Seven Cities of Gold?”

Drew stops pounding the grass with his foot but he’s already worn a muddy spot there. He takes my hand in his. We walk off the field and when we step onto the rubbery, all-weather track each cushioned step gives me little pings in the pit of my stomach. The feeling I get when I’m being ignored. Nothing is as awful as him ignoring me. Nothing. Especially when I have Shadows to slay. I clear my throat trying to contain what’s bubbling up inside of me. Wanting to run away now.

“It is time.” Drew squeezes my hand, turns to face me and says, “But first, you need to know, the truth.” He glances at the nearly full moon.

“About what?”

“About me,” Drew says, shuffling his feet, glancing at the moon again as if it might have shifted in the sky. “Stand here.” He wraps his arm around my waist and gently walks me over to the bleachers. “Remember what I said about the full moon?”

I nod.

“When the moon is full it’s the time when the veil between the world of Shadows and the world of humans is at its thinnest,” he says. His warm breath on my neck sends waves of heat through me. I place my hand over his, the one he has wrapped around my waist, and push his hand into my stomach. We walk together this way and stop only when we’re a few feet from the bleachers. He lets go of me and we stand an arm’s length away, just out of reach. He stares at the all-weather track and says, “Ready?”

“For what?” I say.

“To kill the moon,” he says with a slight smile.

I swallow hard. “Sure.”

He takes guarded steps, one, then another, inching his way toward me as if I’m a pile of dynamite or something that might explode if he walks too fast. It’s like he’s shy but maybe he’s afraid or uncertain or pissed I’m not sure which. But it kind of seems to me, from the way he stoops and moves, like Drew hasn’t done this very often or if he has, he hasn’t killed the moon in a very long time. Maybe, centuries? When Drew’s just inches away, he places his hands on my hips and it’s like fifty butterflies swarm in circles in my stomach. Drew never takes his eyes off the track, though. We keep coming together, smoothly. I watch our shadows come closer and closer together on the reddish-orange track, then merge and blend into one.

Moon Killers releases May 2013. Click here to get in on the Moon Killers Cover Reveal Giveaway 🙂

Squeeeee! It’s a HOP, so get hopping! Thanks for stopping by, now check out some great teasers from these fabulous Indie-licious authors!

Moon Killers (Shadow Series #3) Cover Reveal & Giveaway

Moon Killers (Shadow Series #3) releases May 2013
Moon Killers (Shadow Series #3) releases May 2013

After slaying her first Shadow as a freshman, Roxie expected sophomore year to be less epic. But this year she’ll discover it will take far more than her skills with a sword to win her ultimate reward, her Last Life. A human life. Roxie’s five-hundred-year reign as Shadow Slayer has just begun.

Interworld peace is a lot for a fifteen year old to handle. Slaying shadows is one thing, but now Roxie must face her biggest enemy yet. When Roxie’s Shadow influences her in tragic ways, she must master moon killing––a type of time travel––if she is to survive the Shadows bent on her murder.

But moon killing is tricky, and if Roxie isn’t careful she could destroy everything she so desperately wants to save, not to mention lose a chance at her Last Life. Moon killing’s thrill proves addictive, enchanting. When Roxie’s boyfriend Drew becomes more and more of a stranger and her world begins to crumble, she finds peace in her addiction. Now, moon killing could kill Roxie and she may be too heartbroken to care.

To celebrate the Moon Killers cover reveal I’m giving away 2 audiobooks—1 copy of 13 on Halloween & 1 copy of Shadow Slayer. Just tweet this to enter to win (open internationally & until midnight 2/28/13 winner announced 3/1 on Laurasmagicday):

@Laurawriting’s Moon Killers (Shadow series #3) Cover Reveal #Giveaway! Moon killing’s addictive, enchanting. http://wp.me/p1J9jx-11E #ya

That’s not all! To celebrate, Shadow Slayer (Shadow Series #2) has been reduced to 99 cents everywhere––click here to get your kindle copy. Click here to get your FREE kindle copy of 13 on Halloween (Shadow Series #1). The series is also available for nook, kobo, sony, apple, and on Smashwords too!

Click here to check out the series book trailers, excerpts, dream cast & playlists! Thanks for helping to spread the word about the Shadow Series 🙂

To keep the party going, I’m posting an excerpt from Moon Killers tomorrow on the Indie-licious Teaser Blog Hop, so you won’t just get a peak at my latest book, but you’ll also get to read a bunch of awesome teasers from some fabulous Indies! Hope to see you here tomorrow.

Meet the characters from Shadow Slayer (Shadow Series #2)

 

chloemoretz
Chloe Moretz as Roxie from the Shadow Series (photo credit  IMDb.com)

What’s the scariest thing that’s happened to you?

“Well you’d think I’d say the Shadow Apocalypse, but what felt just as epic as that battle was when I thought all my friends from middle school had abandoned me freshman year.” – Roxie

What makes you mad?

“Well, my birthday is on Halloween, and I guess you’d think I’d freaking love Halloween. But I’m not into it. At least, I wasn’t into it before I turned thirteen. The way I saw it, Halloween ripped off my birthday. It’s not like I have this special day all for myself like everybody else. Still, I epically look forward to getting all the candy every year. But this year, Halloween was the same night as opening night of the school play and I was so excited to be on stage with my boyfriend Continue reading Meet the characters from Shadow Slayer (Shadow Series #2)

Shadow Slayer Tour: SupaGurl Books Review & Giveaways! You’ll never see a shadow the same way again!

Makslake Estate Mansion where Oakdale High School has its homecoming dance, the night Roxie’s life changes forever.

“You’ll be checking everyone you know to see if they have their shadows!! EEEEP” – SupaGurl Books Continue reading Shadow Slayer Tour: SupaGurl Books Review & Giveaways! You’ll never see a shadow the same way again!

YA Indie Carnival––Happy Halloween: Spooky, Scary, Eerie Excerpts

This week at the carnival all the carnis are sharing their spooky, scary, eerie excerpts! Soooo…join in on the fun and share some of your spine-tingling stories too. Did you break into a cemetery as a kid and SWEAR you heard moans and groans when no one else was around? Comment with your scariest memories, and I promise I’ll make your heart race even faster if you listen to 13 ON HALLOWEEN, available now at Audible.com ($1.99 for a limited time). In 13 ON HALLOWEEN (Shadow Series #1), Roxie is afraid of her attic. With good reason. In SHADOW SLAYER (Shadow Series #2) Roxie has a lot more to be afraid of. Here’s a blood-curdling Zombie excerpt:

I turn another corner in the labyrinth. Every leaf, every twig, and even the grass changes colors. Unnatural colors. I startle at a huge rustle beside me and bite my nails.

Two disembodied arms stick out of the bush next to me. My heart beats hard against my chest. I try to wriggle out of his grip but whoeveritis clamps down on my arms making it hard for me to get any leverage.

“AAAAAHhhhhh!” I scream, writhing back and forth. I fight to free my arms but he’s already wrestled them to my sides. I can’t move. He lifts me a few inches off the ground. I kick and stare at my useless hands and spot the long nails with black nail polish that begin to dig into my skin. There’s a tattoo on each finger. All the same. Stars, I think.

“I want to suck your blood!” he says laughing, lowering me to the ground. As soon as my feet get a little traction I kick and try to run away.

“Ouch! Drew, control your woman!” One of the guys says, a familiar voice. A football player steps out of the bushes. He loosens his grip and places an arm, the size of my thigh, over my shoulders. He marches us out of the labyrinth. I twist around, searching the maze. There’s no sign of the sword, my sword.

Drew doubles over, laughing and the prankster takes my hand and places it in Drew’s. My gaze falls on the spot of fabric where Drew’s boutonniere isn’t. We’re surrounded by a bunch of homecoming zombies. Sixteen-year-old zombies. Their tuxedo coats all ripped and fake-aged with chalk or something. The black make-up around their eyes smudge into their white make up, their faces so pale they kind of glow in the moonlight.

“Zombies don’t suck blood!” Drew says between laughs.

“I know it just sounds so much better than I’d like to eat your brains,” the guy says. “Who’s this tasty morsel?”

“Roxie, this is everyone,” Drew says. In the middle of a circle of homecoming zombies, I immediately breathe easier. “Everyone, this is Roxie,” Drew gives my hand a little squeeze. I sink into his hug, floating my fingers over the spot where his boutonniere should be.

“Finally. Hey, I’m Franklin.” A large guy, the guy who had me in his grip and the size of a line backer, exactly the size of a line backer, pulls me away from Drew and buries me in a bear hug.

“That’s enough,” Drew says, taking a hand to Franklin’s shoulder, separating us.

“This is the one, huh?” another guy, smaller than the rest, says. “I’m CeCe.” He kind of scowls as he puts his hands in his pockets and rubs his chin with his shoulder. A little of his undead makeup rubs off on his brown suit coat.

“Hey,” I say. “What’s with the whole Halloween homecoming get up?” It’s all I can manage. I get super shy when I’m around people I don’t know, let alone football players who are years older than me who I barely know. Guys who just tricked me.

“She totally fell for it guys!” Another of the guys says.

“This is Randy,” Drew says, using his whole arm to point him out.

Randy makes like he’s going to run into me and dodges me at the last minute. “May I have this dance?” he says in a made-up English accent. He doesn’t wait for an answer and twirls me around then dips me and says, “I am you know… randy….” with a mischievous smile.

I turn to face Drew. “So what? All that was a joke?”

Drew gazes at the ground before he walks over and wraps me in his arms. His lips meet mine in a forceful kiss. “All of that,” he says. It’s like the best date ever, aside from the fact he made me believe I’m a Shadow Slayer and have to save the world. 

For another excerpt and for the Shadow Series playlist, dream cast and more click here.

Shadow Slayer (Shadow Series #2) is available at Amazon. 13 on Halloween (Shadow Series #1) is free at Amazon.

I dare you to check out the other spooky scary & erie excerpts from my fellow carnis! Click here for more!

 

Freaky Friday! Win a free copy of 13 on Halloween (shadow series #1) audiobook :D

One of my favorite things to do is to sit around the campfire and tell scary stories, really scary stories! Audiobooks remind me of that.

So, I’ve decided to have some fun this weekend. I need this. Here’s my problem. I have no clue what to be this Halloween.

This year, I’ve been having trouble getting into the spirit for this, one of my favorite holidays. So help me out, and enter to win a copy of 13 on Halloween audiobook! 

 

HOW TO ENTER:

1. Tweet: Trick-or-Treat! Enter to win a 13 on #Halloween #audiobook by @Laurawriting. Enter today! http://wp.me/1J9jx #ya

2. Comment on this post with a link to a photo of either you dressed up on Halloween or a very cool costume that you found online.

Every comment is an entry. Every Tweet is an entry.

On Monday, October 15th I’ll pick a random winner! Because Mondays can epically suck & how fun would it be to find out you’ve won an audiobook?

I’ll go first:

Hubby and I as hippie vampires at a friend’s party in LA

Hope you have a fabulous October 13th tomorrow:D

If you want to join in the TOMORROW ONLY FUN on Facebook, like my author page and join us if you dare!

Read more about the Shadow Series here.