Tuesday, April 23, 2013

BLOG TOUR - EXCERPT: Blood Debt (Touched #1) by Nancy Straight

Book Title: Blood Debt
Her whole life, it had just been the two of them. Before her mother’s last breath, she gave Camille the information she had craved her entire life: the identity of her father. Daring to contact him, Camille was welcomed by an entire family she never knew existed. But nothing comes without a price, as she discovers when her family claims a legendary heritage tracing back to a centaur touched by Zeus.
As she learns the secrets of her Centaur bloodline, she is drawn into a forbidden love with Drake. Her life may be the blood debt required to pay for her mother’s transgressions. The same person who once held her mother captive, and forced her into decades of hiding, now controls Camille. Her only chance is to seek a piece of her mother’s past that will win her freedom and the life she desperately wants.


“I know it isn’t any of my business, but are you a full-blooded Centaur?”  I knew from what Bianca had told me that she was, but I had to keep myself distracted.  It was possible for a Centaur and human to marry and have a family, but those children were shunned from our community.  Will would have never had Camille at Bruce’s wedding if she weren’t pureblood.
“Yeah,” she answered with a chuckle, “but I think I’m a defective one.”
“I’m told I’m supposed to be able to communicate with spirits.  I can see my mom sometimes, but I can’t hear her.  I’m supposed to be able to see the future, but I can’t even tell if that cloud over there is going to produce rain.  I definitely can’t read minds either.  Too bad I didn’t come with a receipt; Will might want to return me.”
“I doubt that.  I think all that just takes practice.”
“I hope so.”
“It’s all still new.  Bianca told me you only found out about everything a week ago.”
“Not even a week ago.  I called Will Tuesday night and was on a plane a few hours later.” 
Her eyes were so kind and full of life.  I envied her for not having grown up like the rest of us.  From the time I was a toddler, I knew what I was, knew that I had to hide my strength and speed from humans, deny who I was.  I longed to touch her skin, feel the warmth of her flesh; I shook off my irrational desires and tried to stay on subject.  “But you didn’t know you were a Centaur?”
“Uh, no.  I thought I’d found my long lost father.  I wasn’t expecting any of this.”
“Why didn’t your mom tell you, I mean, before. . .”  I stopped in mid-sentence when I saw Camille was still sensitive about her mother’s death.  Her eyes clouded right there in front of me, and she pursed her lips together.  I’d struck a bad chord I didn’t mean to and wanted to comfort her.  “I’m sorry.”
“It’s okay.  I’m not always such a head case.  I just miss her.”  Camille was in so much pain.  I tried to reason that if I only had a single parent and lost her, then was tossed into all the complexities of our society, I didn’t think I would handle it as well as she was handling it.     
In a happier voice, Camille said, “Let me try to read your mind.”
“Uh, no.  That’s okay.  I keep mine blocked all the time.”  Panic swept me.  I was able to keep my mind blocked, but I worried about my defenses if I got too close to her.  I couldn’t let her know how she’d affected me, or how much I wanted her.
Camille laughed, “Even better, so I can practice without worry of seeing some gross guy stuff.”
I froze, “Uh, Camille, I don’t think that’s such a great idea.”  She ignored me and looked into my eyes; mine refused to look away.   I blocked my thoughts with more force than I’d ever used in my life.
She looked a little frustrated with herself, and I breathed a sigh of relief.  Camille confessed, “Huh, nothing.  Let me try this.”  She swung her legs over the side of the deck chair so we were seated facing each other.  Camille put her hands on either side of my temples; our lips were mere inches apart.  I heard the splashing of the waves, a seagull echoing a warning overhead, and breeze whipping the flag at the ship’s stern.  I continued blocking my thoughts, refusing to let my wall crumble.
Camille repositioned her hands from my temples, sliding them down, cradling my face in her palms.  Her gentle touch threw me off guard.  In that moment I didn’t care if she read every thought in my head.  My mind’s wall disintegrated in front of both of us.  Her eyes widened when she saw a glimpse of my desire for her.  I knew I could control my impulses no matter how strong they were to take her in my arms and hold her body to mine.  I had just filled her mind with images of the two of us, where I wanted to be and what I wanted to be doing with her: walking in a tall meadow, the sun bearing down; on a snowcapped mountain, the only heat from our intertwined bodies; swimming in the crystal clear waters of the Caribbean near a deserted cove.  I savored each of these fantasies and shamelessly shared them with her, each more erotic than the previous.
What I wasn’t expecting was her reaction to what was going through my mind.  I expected her to slap me, to leap away and scream, to call me hundreds of names that I deserved – I never expected that her mouth would close the gap with mine in an instant.
Her eyes closed, and I felt her soft lips press hard on to mine.  My arms did the unthinkable and pulled her seated body off her deck chair and fully onto me.  My veins, that last night felt like ice was coursing through them when I saw her, now had molten lava pumping through my body, and I had no recourse but to melt into her.  Nothing else in the world mattered beyond the feel of her skin against me, the heat that generated between us, and her mouth on mine.  We sat wrapped in each other for a short time before we both came to our senses and released. 

About the author:
I LOVE Starbucks’ White Mocha Latte and Mountain Dew, (but not together). I have a lead foot so I set cruise control when I drive, even in 25 MPH zones. I almost never win when I play Angry Birds, but have my 8 year old close, so he can clear the hard levels for me. I grew up on a farm and am opposed to eating fresh chicken (not opposed to meat - just opposed to any meat that was alive a few hours before lunch). I am a huge fan of the show, Big Bang Theory, on CBS. I have a stray cat that I feed every night and morning but she’s never let me get closer than within 3 feet of her – I keep thinking eventually I’ll wear her down and she’ll let me pet her. I share my life with two fantastic sons, three rotten dogs and a husband that I adore.

Author Links: Blog l Twitter l Facebook l Goodreads

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1 comment:

  1. Thanks so much for participating in the Blood Debt tour!! For anyone who reads this, they can enter to win one of five paperbacks being given away with this tour, too! Here's the link to enter to win: http://incandescentenchantments.blogspot.com.au/2013/04/blood-debt-book-tour-schedule.html


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