The Vampire Hunters Academy

October 2015…

Sanaya watched her mother sit by the window sill, Jack Daniel’s in one hand and a cigarette in another. Her father had yet to come home, and whenever her mother had a bottle of liquor in hand, she knew things weren’t good. Patrice hadn’t said a word since she’d come home from a long day at the Post Office, and Sanaya knew something wasn’t right. As a matter of fact, she’d been walking on eggshells around her mother all week since her father; Roland went away to the store and never came back. Patrice had yet to file a missing person’s report, being that this would not be the first time Roland disappeared without a trace. Sanaya sighed, secretly wishing some self-esteem was at the bottom of the liquor bottle so that her mother would just divorce him and move on. The man was a cheater and showed no signs of changing any time soon. Sanaya assumed that he had always been that way, but could not figure out for the life of her why her mother would put up with it. The last time he disappeared, he ran off with one of Patrice’s ex-friends for two years before coming home with his tail between his legs. For the first six months after his departure, she had to live with her Aunt Shawna while her mother struggled through a serious bout of depression and drinking. After she almost drank herself to the point of a coma, she finally began to clean herself up, found a new job at the Post Office as a clerk, and things began to look up for Sanaya and Patrice-until her dad came home, and well…things went downhill from there. And now, they were back in the shit hole.

Sanaya crept into the kitchen, trying to block out her mother’s thoughts-which was another thing: she could actually hear what people were thinking as they were thinking, something that at one point freaked her out. She smoothed the fine hairs that framed her face back into the freshly flat ironed ponytail she could feel bouncing against the back of her neck as she stealthily opened the fridge.

The son of bitch got me all the way fucked up, her mother seethed mentally, still staring out of the window. As soon as he comes back, I’m leaving his ass and he can see for himself what it’s like to raise a child all by hisself…

Sanaya quickly grabbed her left over foot long sandwich from Subway her mother picked up for her after school and headed back to her room while she could. If Patrice caught wind of her moving about the house in the state that she was in, Sanaya would have to bear the verbal brunt of her mother’s tirade until it was time for her to get to school.

Fuck him!

Sanaya gently eased the door to her room shut and cut the volume down just low enough not to disturb her mother…and because as of late, her hearing had become much more sensitive and acute that even at the television’s lowest volume, it still sounded like her ear drums were going to explode. As a matter of fact, since she was twelve her senses had heightened to the realms of abnormal. She could see things at least a mile away with total clarity, all the way down to most minute detail. She could smell which equal acuity, having spent many a day in the nurses office for extreme nausea and vomiting from the nasal sensitivity. One time, after being picked up from school for vomiting, her mother asked her if she was pregnant, and drove her to a local free clinic where she was forced to take a pregnancy test despite her still being a virgin.

She hid most of the changes that took place within her body other than the typical issues that all females went through as they transitioned into young adulthood; but everything else such as the heightened sensitivity to her environment, and the awareness of the ever present feeling that something darker, and stronger than herself, she kept locked away. Besides, her mother had other issues to worry about other than the fact that her daughter’s developing “gifts” that should have by rights placed her in the nut house. She learned a long time ago that there just wasn’t room for special people like her; and whatever these gifts are…well, there is no such thing as super heroes. Those characters only existed in the pages of a Marvel comic book.

Sanaya tightened the strings of her berry pink pajama bottoms and plopped on her twin sized bed, decorated with a purple comforter set and covered with stuffed animals she collected since she was old enough to walk. Yeah, it was kiddish but how else would she sleep at night when she always felt like someone was watching her?

Taking a bite of the leftover Philly cheese steak sub, she listened for her mother, happy to have distanced herself from her mother’s toxic thoughts, but dreading what the night may bring from Patrice’s drunken stupor. Sanaya finishes her sandwich and tosses the wrapping her purple waste bin by the door before crawling into bed. Patrice would more than likely sit by the window all night if left undistracted from her thoughts, which Sanaya intended to do. Sanaya wrestles underneath the welcoming comfort of her covers, and allow her thoughts to drift to the sound of MTV’s Cribs, and the hauntingly eerie silence which begun to blanket her street. She shrugged off the horrifying sensation as paranoia, and cursing herself for never being able to relax.

She grabbed the remote and cut the television off and just listened. She heard the sound of her father’s 2002 Honda Civic pull up into the driveway of their two story duplex. The hum of the engine coming to a stop as he stepped out onto the pavement, his heavy footsteps tapping against the pavement. Her whole body tensed as she listened to the jingle of his keys clink against the metal door. Something wasn’t right…she did not know how she knew, but somewhere deep inside of her knew her father’s return just wasn’t right. She detected the presence of someone else just outside of her home’s iron gate, and she sat up quickly. Her eyes adjusting to the dark as if it were day. She listened intently, tuning more into what may have been going on outside than in.

The presence moved through the shadows with the stealth and agility of a trained assassin before coming to a stop just underneath her bedroom window. She got up to take a peek when she could hear her mother’s drunken outburst slam into her cranium.

“So which bitch was it this time, Roland?” she demanded.

Sanaya could see it in her mind’s eye: her mother leaning against the wooden dining room table with a multicolored scarf on her head full of tightly coiled locks she kept hidden under various wigs; her large brown eyes tinged with red from hours of crying and drinking; her once beautifully smooth brown skin marred with worry lines and few wrinkles here and there; her 5’9” frame draped in an old tattered red robe; and all signs of hope and happiness completely drained from her pores. Standing before her father was a shell of a woman who lacked the one thing she wanted most in the world: the love of her husband.

Sanaya listened for her father’s reply, which came out in a melodic echo that caused her skin to prickle.

“You’ve been drinking,” was all he said.

Hearing her father’s voice made something within her snap, and she mentally shot her mother a message: Run mama!

However, the message fell on deaf ears because her mother instantly began her verbal tirade, belting out curses, threats and everything else she could think of. Sanaya quietly eased the door open and slid out, and crept down the hall, cautious to remain hidden in the shadows, careful not to be seen by the version of the man she knew as her father. All of her instincts began to fire off the instant she laid eyes on her father. He looked like Roland, sounded like Roland; and said things that Roland would say…but Sanaya shuddered… Roland wasn’t Roland.

She peered out just in time to witness her mother slap her father with a force that should have knocked the wind out of him, but he never staggered. He never flinched. He just glared at her with such intensity, that even in her drunken and enraged state, Patrice took a step back. And that is when Sanaya noticed the difference. Roland’s mouth crested with two pointed teeth that were as thick as switch blades and equally as sharp, which extended to near the end of his jawline. His normally hazel brown eyes flickered a deep crimson, and his honey brown skin appeared more ashen and dull.

Patrice took another step back, unsure of which direction to go, and Roland stalked after her.

“Get the hell away from me Roland,” Patrice warned. “I mean it.”

“Or else what?” Roland asked coolly.

No longer able to sit back and wait for her father to seal her mother’s fate, Sanaya sprang to her feet, armed only with her bravery and fear for her mother’s life she charged at her father, only for him to knock her into the wall with the sweep of his hand. Her head connected with the 8 x 12 mirror her mother insisted on purchasing from Ross a year ago, before she collapsed to the ground.

“Sanaya!” Patrice called out, her back now pinned against the cupboard and her husband’s face just inches away from hers.

“I am terribly glad to be rid of you, you miserable, useless bitch,” Roland articulated slowly. “I long ago grew tired of your endless ramblings…” He leaned in closer. “And to answer the question you begged of me long ago, yes your sister is better.”

Patrice’s gasp was followed by her scream as Roland slammed her into the cupboard and sank his teeth into her throat. Sanaya, dazed and bloodied, struggled to get to her feet when the window from which her mother gazed out into the night shattered, and the watchful presence emerged, dressed in all black and armed with a long sword and a mission burst through the shattered window. With the speed and agility of a panther, the hooded assassin’s sword sliced through the air with a chime, taking Roland’s head clean off of his shoulders. Patrice’s body slumped to the floor, her hands clutching her throat.

Sanaya managed to get on her feet, forcing herself to stumble to her mother’s aid. Slightly dazed, she inched closer drawing in deep breaths as she watched her mother spew up her own blood. Kneeling beside her, she brought her mother’s head to her chest, unsure of what to do or who to turn to. The hooded assassin, still clutching the sword approached them, pulling out a small vial of clear liquid and removing the spongy cap. Before Sanaya could respond, the assassin sprinkled a few drops of the mystery fluid onto her mother and the instant the drop made contact, her mother began to incinerate.

“What the fuck did you do to her?” Sanaya sobbed jumping back, as her mother screamed and thrashed about as her body became consumed with flames.

The hooded assassin regarded her with a disinterested stare before returning to Patrice’s body as it slowly turned to a pile of ash. Patrice’s screams abated, her arms no longer thrashing about as the flames continued to consume her. Sanaya’s sobs became louder as she fell to her knees once more. Whatever her father had done, he’d brought it home to her mother and now…both of her parents are gone. Overwrought with grief, she buried her face in her hands, not expecting the sudden strike of a small dart to the base of her neck. She flinched, and scrambled to her feet to address the sudden threat, however, the specially calibrated toxin sent a shock to her nervous system and the last thing she remembered was the heavy hand of the hooded assassin catching her by the waist before her face hit the floor.

 

 

Release Date: TBD

****All works are created and written by Delizhia D. Jenkins 2016****

Stay tuned.

Viper Returns

Staring into the hazel brown eyes of the woman who used to fuck the man you are in love with is not fun. Had it not been for the fact that Michael is damn near comatose, I am certain that this encounter would have led to a fight to the death. Tall, lean, with a thick head of naturally curly raven hair that hung loosely past her shoulders; full cherry red lips, high cheek bones set atop a perfectly symmetrical face-yeah, I will give Michael his props. She is taller than me by almost a foot, and as she glared at me with hatred oozing from her pores, I knew this is a bad idea… Scotland is a long ways from here, and the last thing I want to do is travel abroad with a bitter bitch.

“Where is he?” She demanded, pushing past me, barely giving me time to step to the side.

“Let’s make one thing clear bitch,” I say through clenched teeth. “The only reason why you were called is because I do not know how to heal him.”

She stops mid-step and turns to face me, her expression unreadable.

“It figures vampire,” she says coolly. “What knowledge would you possess on healing Vampire Hunters? We kill your kind and have proven ourselves to be effective at doing it.”

“Yeah, well for you to be so effective I don’t see too many of you around-“

–“I don’t think it is best that you accompany us to Scotland,” she snaps coldly.

“I didn’t ask you to come here to think.”

She glares at me. “Just because you walk in the sun does not mean you cannot be killed,” she threatened, her tone menacing and filled with murderous promise.

“I have killed werewolves, vampires older than me, and monsters among men,” I warn inching closer to her, “which means I will have no problem killing you. I am trying to get this man to Scotland so he could receive the help that he needs. Now if I am willing to risk my own survival with full understanding that I will be surrounded by very old and experienced Vampire Hunters that should tell your silly ass something. “

We glare at each other in a heated stand- off that extended past just a few minutes, and it was her who decided to stand down.

“Just watch your step vampire,” she threatens, and returned her attention to Michael, whose coloring had turned to a ghastly white. “So he was bitten by a werewolf AND a vampire?” She quizzed, pulling the sheet back and examining the wound.

“No. He was bitten by a werewolf/vampire hybrid,” I say, feeling slightly annoyed at having to re-explain what had transpired prior to her arrival.

“That cannot be…” she said quietly.

“Well it is. Even vampires are experimenting in the scientific communities now.”

She replaces the covers over him. “I don’t know how we are going to be able to transport him by plane to Scotland. He is gravely ill, and one look from the flight attendants and he will be asked to leave.”

“And not to mention that he is a wanted suspect for a series of what humans refers to as murders in Florida. He would never make it past the TSA,” I add shaking my head.

“And how the hell did he end up a wanted man ? He is the most honorable man I know and he wouldn’t dream of getting caught up in the likes of …” She scans me up and down. “…in the likes of your world.”

She has one more time to cross me with another slick ass comment before this whole thing becomes a wrap. “Clearly you don’t know him as well as you wished you did,” I snap. “And if he is so honorable then why the hell haven’t you seen him in how many centuries?”

She glowers at me, before focusing her gaze on Michael. Her eyes soften at the sight of him in such a vulnerable state.

“Because we were both young and reckless at the time…and incredibly foolish. I always knew that I would come back to him at some point…”

Irritated doesn’t even begin to cover the desire to rip her head off of her shoulders. I glare at her, fangs lengthening by the second.

“Well I hate to break it to you,” I say lethally. “But he is taken.”

“By you?” She scoffs in disbelief. “What possible future could he have with you?”

“One that he clearly didn’t want with you, otherwise we wouldn’t be in this position now would we?”

Game over. She says nothing more and looks longingly at Michael before reaching into a small sack that he held tied around her waist, pulling out a handful of herbs and then gently placing them on top of the wound. Her expression was incredibly pained, and from what I could gather full of regret. I suppose in her mind Michael was the one that got away, but what she fails to understand is that the feeling is not mutual. He grimaces, and his eyes flicker open in surprise of her appearance, and then he returns back to a peaceful sleep.

“That should help draw out some of the pain,” she says softly.

“What is that?” I ask curiously.

“Hunters Bane. It is an herb that is grown in the lands of Scotland, Ireland and even in certain parts of Africa. We use it to help us heal faster.”

We watch as he sighs in relief even in his sleep, and I wonder if perhaps keeping him here would serve all of our interests. I may not have to travel all the way to Scotland after all, especially if I can locate enough Hunters Bane from one of these off the market herb stores that offer holistic alternatives that give humans a false sense of hope in the art of healing.

“We have to get him out of here,” I say out loud. “As much as I would like to keep him comfortable in this hotel room, we just raided the lair of one of the most notoriously feared vampires the world has seen, and I expect there to be an army after me.”

Rowena shoots me a quick look before returning her gaze to Michael.

“He can come with me. I have plenty of places to shelter him. Considering the fact that you are responsible for this man’s current condition, transporting him to Scotland would probably kill him. I can contact his parents and the rest of the elders and have them meet me-“

“You have got to be out of your goddamn mind if you think I am going to allow you to take him anywhere alone,” I growl between clenched fangs.

“Tread carefully vampire,” Rowena whispers with a hint of poison. “It is because of you that he is even in this predicament-“

“And it will be because of me that he lives. You are here because of me. You would have never known he was in need of help had I not reached out to you-“

Suddenly, there is a crash just beyond the hallway. Both of us key in, our sense on high alert, and I detect the disgustingly potent smell equivalent to that of a wet dog: werewolf.

She looks at me, her green eyes littered with distrust.

“We have to get out of here,” I say. “Now.”

“How are we going to transport him without us being seen?” She asks, her gaze dancing between myself and Michael.

“I can transport him through vapor. You just have to tell me where to go,” I say moving quickly towards the bed where I bundle him into the blankets.

“And where does that leave me?” She demands.

“You’re a huntress,” I say, gently lifting possibly one of the largest men in the history of the world into my arms. His pain filled groans tug at my heart, threatening my concentration. “I am sure you can handle yourself just fine. Now, where did you park?”

I can taste the shift in the electricity that saturates the air. Familiar howls, and snarls from shifting werewolves are approximately ten feet away from the hotel room in which we stand.

“Listen,” I say firmly. “We don’t have time for bullshit. We have to leave now. Where the fuck did you park so I-we can get this man to safety!”

“I am parked underground in the black Lexus truck,” she says quickly.

“Take the window. It’s about a thirty foot vertical drop. Once you hit the ground, there is a side door which leads to the underground parking structure. Meet you there in 20 seconds.” With that I dematerialize with Michael in tow.

“More like 15,” I hear Rowena whisper as she rushes to the window and takes a sprawling leap.

Traveling through the vapor, I see how we managed to leave just in time, because as soon as Rowena makes it out of the window, the double latched door goes flying off the hinges and in comes three massive wolves, fresh from transition with fangs dripping with frothy white saliva. The news of Lucas’ Barnes death clearly travels fast, and with that in mind, I move Michael and I through the airwaves and materialize in front of Rowena’s truck just as she came running into the parking structure. She unlocked the door and started hit the ignition button that is on her key chain, and I gently ease Michael into the backseat, strapping him in. Rowena is already in the front seat, and there is a brief moment in her gaze where I can tell she is debating on pulling off without me or not, however I am not about to give this bitch one second of wishful thinking because I am strapped in the passenger seat before she can complete the thought. She scowls but hits the accelerator and we speed out of the underground garage and onto the busy streets of New Orleans.

 

 

Viper Book 2 Teaser 2

Sin: Daughter of the Grim Reaper (Excerpt)

Sin: Daughter of the Grim Reaper (Excerpt)

Chapter 4

I awake to the familiar smells and sounds of sulfur erupting from the gaseous pits of home sweet home: Hell. I force my eyes to open and there standing beside me in dazzling white robing is the messenger angel Gabriel. Like the rest of his brethren he is surrounded by a blinding gold light, and he extends a glowing hand to help me to my feet. He lifts me with no effort on his part, and once I am steady on my feet, he gazes at me with hopeful eyes. I find his stare to be unnerving, his colorless eyes examining me with a quiet uncertainty.

“Your father has been removed from his duties,” he said sadly. I look at him, the memory of my father’s final words turning my stomach into a tangle of knots.

“Forever?” I ask hoping that there is still some time left for me to find the seal.

His gaze remains focused on mine. “No. Until the seal is found he will remain under heavy guard…but if the seal is not returned in time before it is broken, then…he will be held responsible.”

“Where is he being detained?” I at least needed to know that he was…ok. For all of the misery and extreme punishments he has subjected me to one would think that I would be kicking my heels with joy. And, to a certain extent a part of me did feel slightly vindicated that he may receive a taste of his own brutal medicine, but at the end of the day he was still my father…and he trusted me.

“I cannot reveal that information to you for reasons I am sure you would understand.”

“So why are you here?” Without thinking I summon my father’s Scythe into my possession. Gabriel looks at me alarmed by my sudden offensive act.

“I ask that you do not react in such haste; such actions could further instigate harsher consequences for both you and your father.”

“I have no intentions on threatening you Gabriel,” I say softly. “I just want to know why you are down in the more…baser levels.”

Gabriel studies me once more, his expression changing from alarmed to thoughtful. “You are more like your father than you know,” he says finally after a brief pause. “No one foresaw that he would transfer his powers unto you, a half mortal. But now that he has done it, there are a few things you should know.”

“I’m listening,” I say shifting my weight onto my right foot where I could lean onto the Scythe for support.

“You are to only claim the humans without the mark, and your powers are not meant for you to act on revenge. To do otherwise would result in a punishment worse than what your father may experience. You are the gatekeeper of the afterlife: humans that are allowed entrance into the Heavens will be escorted by one of my brothers. You are never to intervene. Humans that are not allowed entry will be escorted by you to the lower realms where…the fallen will claim ownership….”

He continues on in a speech about what I can and cannot do for what seems like an eternity. Most of the stuff I already knew courtesy of Grim, some of it would take a few practice lessons for me to get it. But what I do not think Gabriel understands is that my new promotion is temporary. I am finding that seal and proving my father’s innocence.

“And last but not least,” He says turning to leave from whatever path he took to get here. “I do not believe your father had something to do with the seal’s disappearance. I believe that my brothers are guided only by their reverence for human life that they see him for what he is not. Grim may be a lot of things that oppose what most of us are designed to do, but ambition is not his motivation. He is nothing like the unnamed one and it saddens me that he is being blamed for such an atrocity.”

“I will find that seal and the human responsible for it,” I declare, now more determined than ever.

“I know you will. That is why I came down to speak to you. But I must leave you be Sin of Sin. Send for me and I shall assist you in any manner that I can…” And with that, he disappeared into a ball of light and was gone.

So even the angels are divided, I think to myself still staring in the direction where the angel had stood. It was then that I realized my father had given me his powers to better aid me in my quest and not so much to prevent a cosmic meltdown. As the Angel of Death, I am now more connected to humanity than ever. I gaze down at my hands, stretching out my palms and I could sense the very vibrations of life right underneath my fingertips. In my mind’s eye I witness human after human whose lives were on the brink of coming to an end ranging from the last few moments of breath after months of battling a terminal illness; the moment their heads make impact through the windshield in a fatal collision; the brush of fear as the really unlucky humans fall victim to a murderous predator and their cries are blotted out by a gun, or a knife, or the overpowering grip of a pair of hands wrapped around their throats choking the life out of them.

So this is why dear old dad is always so damn cranky.

I extend my left arm, summoning the legendary Scythe into my grip. Thank goodness wearing that black hooded robe is not a requirement because I still remain in the leather outfit I purchased. I made a mental note to take Grim shopping as soon as this mess was resolved. He needed a different look, other than his current dreadful appearance. I take one last look at my surroundings. Hellfire, brimstone, lava pits, demons materializing from the physical world in search of a soul to torment; fallen angels lurking about, perhaps on their way to meet with their boss…speaking of boss, now that I am the Angel of Death where are my underlings? Father had a legion of soldiers at his beck and call and here I stand in the middle of Hell alone…. Shouldn’t there have been some sort of ceremony to recognize my promotion? Strange…very strange.

Father mentioned something about being some sort of conspiracy against him, and in Hell, there is always a conspiracy for a power grab. Coups are performed on an almost constant basis, alliances are always formed and agreements made. Everyone down here works for someone, with the exception of my father. He is a sort of free agent, and now that I think of it, that makes him more of a threat than anyone. Someone down here has conspired to remove Grim permanently from his position and used a human to see it through. The question is who? There are millions of demons and most of them work for the Beast. Furthermore, they do not act unless told and I doubt that the Beast has any real interest in destroying Grim considering the fact that he has a war to plan and Grim’s purpose is more beneficial to his cause than not. So that must mean it had to be one or some of Grim’s own soldiers who were responsible.

First things first: find the human. I could terrorize the entire realm and would still find myself unsuccessful. And then I have an idea. Using the Scythe, I send out a telepathic call to every last one of my father’s soldiers to my presence. Instinctively I knew that the one or ones responsible would not make an appearance. They would be somewhere in the earth realm hiding until the time came for the seal to be broken, when my father would meet his end. The caverns vibrated a deep rumbling, creating deep splinters in its wake. Sounds of souls being tormented escalated to a deafening level; cries begging for the Almighty to come and set them free of their eternal torture. Within seconds the first few hundred of my father’s soldiers, now fully under my command are standing in front of me. Some of them sported the black winged/dark angel appearance, while others resembled gargoyles with their clawed hands and feet, stony expressions and grey scaly skin and wings like that of a bat instead of a bird. In just a few minutes I had almost an entire legion standing before me, ready for my command.

All of them stared at me in surprise, and as I mentally counted present heads, I noticed that a good fifty or so were absent-and those that were absent had been my father’s best men. As a matter of fact, those that were missing had accompanied me on several recon missions…just as I thought. They stared at me with curiosity, desperate for answers. As I surveyed these entities, I sensed the vibration of jealousy coming from a few of them, and I knew that if I did not establish myself now as the Angel of Death, I would have to deal with a possible mutiny, and Grim was no longer available for me to run to for obedience issues. I take a deep cleansing breath before speaking.

“As you all may know, Grim has been temporarily removed from his position,” I begin slowly, making eye contact with every one of the warriors that stood in front of me. “For now I will resume as the Angel of Death, fulfilling my father’s duties which is why I felt the need to call this impromptu meeting.” I wait for a response, and when there is none I continue. “Someone or, someones have stolen the Seal of the Apocalypse and somehow my father is being held responsible. When I discover just who the culprits are,” I say, my eyes blazing with rage so dark my unnaturally emerald green eyes turned completely black. “…not only will I skin them alive personally, they will die a second death. Most of you know that I survived the Abaddon Pits, and inside those pits lay a creature that has yet to be unleased onto the earth for a reason. His name is the Devourer and not only does he eat your physical body…he eats your soul. And one more thing,” I add staring beyond the legions and into the deeper pits that made Hell what it was. “I know that this may come as a shock to a lot of you. Some of you even feel that I am not qualified to assume such a prestigious position considering that I am or was half mortal. And I know that some of you feel slighted by Grim after eons of unquestionable allegiance…yet here I stand being given all of the powers of darkness at my disposal… Here is what I present to you: either you stand with me as you had my father or you stand against me and betray my father. You could try to form an alliance with the Unnamed One, but we all know how that goes…betray my father and you die, plain and simple. Have I made myself clear?”

*******Coming Soon***

Bad Ass Chicks Blog 1

Bad Ass Chicks Blog 1

Bad Ass Chicks

July 1, 2015

So today is the day we kick off the series and I am so fortunate to shed the light on the talented, super cool author Kayti Nika Raet and her Bad Ass Chick: Niko. Niko is from Kayti’s book series The Outsider Chronicles, and if you haven’t gotten wind of that awesome series, well now is the time to change your life. Here is an excerpt from Niko’s recent exploits in the book Monster:

As they ran toward the flare Niko realized that though it was ingenious Roosevelt’s idea wasn’t completely foolproof. The flares only told the approximate location of the Slither not how many there were.

Once she rounded the corner she would have no idea if she was going to encounter one Slither or twenty-six, if she was going to encounter a regular Slither, or the eerily intelligent, talking ones.

She had no idea what to expect when she rounded the corner but it definitely wasn’t what she actually saw.

There was nothing.

The street was empty.

There were no Slithers.

Ari stumbled to a halt. “What?”

“There aren’t any Slithers here.” Alice said, swiveling her head left and right. “Are you sure you’re not lost, Arianne?”

“She’s not lost.” Niko cut in before Ari could say anything.

They were in the right spot, the flare had originated from a place only a few meters away; they could even smell the smoke and taste the bitterness on their tongue.

They were in the right spot, there just weren’t any Slithers. Niko moved until her back was against a house and she could get a better view of the street.

All was quiet. Everyone was safely tucked inside their homes which were balanced on several concrete blocks to keep them from touching the acid. A few of the homes had a thin light slipping out from underneath their doors, the light was either provided by solar powered lamps or glow sticks. She hoped to one day bring electricity into the slums but for now, they were concentrating on bringing water to every home.

Alice and Ari stood beside her, their eyes panning the street warily, Roosevelt was somewhere on the roof above them.

“It’s probably a false alarm,” Ari said. She was whispering as though she wasn’t completely sure of her theory. “Someone was scared and set one off by accident.”

“Or someone was an idiot,” Alice said, sounding less forgiving.

Ari grunted as though she agreed with her but couldn’t bear to say it aloud.

“Sh.” Niko said. Something wasn’t right.

The houses were balanced on blocks to keep them off the ground. It left about a foot and a half of space beneath the house. It wasn’t much but it was just enough to hide a Slither.

They were dealing with a smart one.

Niko lurched away from the wall. “It’s under the house. Move!”

Didn’t that give you chills? Anyone that manages to survive in a dystopian society gets two thumbs up from me, but to survive in a dystopian society where Slithers have taken over the damn place and to do it with a baseball bat deserves a red carpet, a bottle of wine and tons of praise. I love Niko’s character and I cannot wait for more.  Here are some more fun facts about Niko:

NIKO

One can live for several weeks without food but only a few days without water, a fact seventeen year old Niko is only too aware of as she struggles to provide for her two younger brothers in a post- apocalyptic landscape where the rain burns like acid, food grows increasingly scarce and any Slither that crosses her path is laid low before it can sink its teeth into her.

Then one night everything she’d ever worked for and loved is consumed by a raging fire, leaving her with one brother missing, the other dead and herself gravely injured.

She’s rescued by the Rose Circle, a rogue group of Slither hunters. They sneak her into Amaryllis City, a decadent metropolis where those able to pay the exorbitant entrance fee live a life of relative ease.

But for Niko, Amaryllis City is not the haven she grew up believing it would be and her unique abilities as a Slither hunter make her a particularly visible target to a city with hopes of experimentation, replication and other nasty bits.

All Niko ever wanted to do was find her baby brother, but that’s proving to be harder than expected.

I know you want more on Niko and Ms. Kayti so here are the links to contact them:

Website: kaytinikaraet.com Blog: writebitches.wordpress.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kaytinikaraetbooks Twitter: https://twitter.com/KNRwrites Pinterest: pinterest.com/kaytinikaraet/  Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/1fb2cR7  Smashwords: http://bit.ly/1IDVehs  Book Links:  Niko: http://amzn.to/1u5sFAe Harm: http://amzn.to/1s9Nbz0  Outsider:  http://amzn.to/1w3tP3H Goodreads: http://bit.ly/1uWYEpr

I want to take this opportunity to say thanks to Kayti for sharing Niko with us. A black chick with a bat is bad ass to me lol…stay tuned for more Bad Ass Chicks next week. And just a reminder, if you are an author looking to share your Bad Ass Chick of a character, you have until the 10th to email me with questions and your info at septembershope@gmail.com.

  10659400_298202547035793_9011333378634101133_n (1)