Wolf

Excerpt from Wolf:

Hands poked at her body. Her tail was lifted in the air and then dropped. The same thing done with a paw. Then the hands picked her up and carried her. She could smell the tooth-spitters they carried. The burnt stone smell mingled with the scent of men, musky, like the sweat of a badger. The crisp smell of urine flowed from one of the men.

She knew that man. He was the one she had warned away from Michael and the not-cub. He hadn’t put his hands on her. She knew that too. From the smell of him, he was two metres in front of her. The crunch of the snow under his boots had a nervous quality to it, as if the sound itself shivered.

After a time, the motion of the men stopped and she felt herself placed on a cold surface.

 

 

“Get in the chopper, Harris.”

Sergeant Thomas Jenkins didn’t understand. His men weren’t cowards. But four of them had died in less than three minutes. That didn’t seem possible. Nothing he had fought had ever been that fast, nor that deadly, not unless it was missile based. True, two of the deaths had been from a rifle. The poor sod using it had been taken out by a wolf bigger than the one on the chopper floor. But the thing that had attacked Michael Scott was dead. Without a brainpan, it was just an oddity for the taxidermist. Gerund had mentioned a woman or a wolf that travelled with Michael Scott. A wolf was in the chopper. Jenkins didn’t know anything about a second animal. Or what Harris was ranting about . . . the man was tech support, not recon. Why did the company let people cross train without the skills? Jenkins just shook his head.

excerpt from Wolf

“Easy girl. Shhhh,” Michael said. Even though gun trained, the horse was skittish.

Michael felt a pang of guilt low in his belly. He was supposed to protect these animals; they weren’t friends, but he understood them, cared for them in ways that went beyond any kind of pet-human relationship. His horses were an extension of the survival they met together, here in the Rockies. They needed each other. Depended on the other for so much more than just companionship.

He took a kit bag from the wall, some bandages and ointments, and then walked slowly forwards, talking all the way. It wasn’t the words that were important, it was the tone of voice he used. Soothing calm that flowed from him to his riding horse. It took a long time for peace to settle into place in the confines of the cave. At least it felt that way. When he opened the stall gate, his horse shied away.

“Easy. It’s okay.”

Finally, Chaka let him touch her throat, and run a hand over her hide to find the damage the wolf had left. Besides the bite on the neck, there were claw marks high up on both flanks and shoulders. The horse had bucked the wolf off. Michael had been far enough into the cave to put the first shot into the wolf’s side when it landed. And then Faelon had attacked.

Michael took a med dispenser from the kit and filled it with painkillers from a Sealpak. The soft hiss of air almost startled the animal again, but the lessening of pain it had been feeling was soothing. Michael moved the local anesthesia to the area around the other wounds. Chaka barely noticed the hiss. Next, he took an antiseptic and cloth and cleaned the wounds. He took his time, again, glad he could do something other than be anxious. He didn’t bother to look behind, knowing Chaka was a better alarm than any other right now. But he wanted to look, to see Faelon standing there, alive.

A Request for Reviews.

If you’ve read Wolf, please take the time to write a review, I’d appreciate it.
Thank you.

Another excerpt from Wolf:
The moonlight shimmered over the landscape like silver escaping a forge. Dawn would turn the snow into molten gold soon.
It was cold. Freezing without the shirt he had packed into Faelon’s wounds. Michael carried her to the cabin. For all the weight of her body, she felt too light. Her head lolled at an angle that seemed disjointed, as if her spine had been severed. Or, as if she had no life left in her wolfen body.
But her spine was intact, and her heart beat in her chest, though it seemed weak to him. He thought that was just because of the way his hands shook as he had tried to sense her pulse and feel her heartbeat, the task made all the more difficult for the thick fur that covered her body. It was like trying to feel an elevator’s vibration in an earthquake.
He brushed the door open with his shoulder. In his haste to save the horses he had left it open. A few quick steps, and he laid Faelon gently on the bed.
“PAC. Proximity Mode. Medical.” Michael pulled the Nano-tech that was less a machine and more a personal bodyguard from his desk, from where it had been teaching Faelon. “Monitor Faelon. Administer any drugs needed.” He slipped the tech around her foreleg. It shrank into place. He knew the touch would also complete the Home Advantage command he had introduced earlier.
PAC fed Nano-filaments into her body. “Monitoring. Medical Mode. Pulse weakened, heartbeat steady. Her cell structure is showing the same signs as her saliva but at a greatly increased rate. Recommend you remove the wadding from her wounds before her flesh grows into place around it.”
His shirt?
Michael pulled at the cloth gently. His face contorted as the material slowly lifted up, taking tissue and hair with it. A low whine echoed from Faelon’s throat.

Hug someone today.

Excerpt from Wolf: A Military P.A.C. Novel

In snowshoes, his movement was hampered. He didn’t have much choice, so he kept his knife low, his stance ready and spread out, as a hundred kilos of wolf bore down on him, the growl in his ears deafening. The wolf’s arc would bring its teeth to his throat. Michael crouched down and raised his knife, thrusting with all his weight. He felt the blade bite deep into the wolf’s underside, the hilt meeting its hide and burying deep. The wolf twisted its head and drove its teeth into Michael’s right shoulder. His hand slipped from the knife. He collapsed, following the wolf’s arc to the ground as best he could, lessening the force, reducing the tearing of his jacket and hopefully the flesh underneath. He heard Faelon then, her weight slamming into the other wolf with a thud as they rolled away from him, snow exploding outward. He finally got a look at the wolf as it snarled and ravaged at Faelon, trying to tear her apart. Its body was black in colour, turning to a dark grey on its limbs and paws. Its hair was spiked with rage, and its eyes glared with darkness, as if its colouring was showing its personality as well. It was easy to see Faelon against its dark fur; she possessed the same brindle coat as her hair in human form.

Then silence descended on the forest as the two wolves untwisted from each other as if they had to see each other to make the next move. Then Michael saw what he had gone through with Faelon himself—only he had won that dominance game. Locked in the stare, Faelon took an aggressive stance, her fur standing up, a growl thrumming through the air. The other wolf’s stance was defensive. It stood slightly crouched, its back up, and tail hung low. The intruder turned and melted into the forest. Blood stained the snow, puddles of it trailing after the male.

Kindle Promo

The promo I ran on Kindle the other day for Wolf: A Military P.A.C. Novel was, in my opinion, very successful. Almost 1700 downloads. Now if just ten percent of them write a review…I’d really appreciate it.
Thank you to all who shared this on their page or in their network. I found the whole promo humbling and vital.
Thank you again.

Editing

I’ve done a lot of editing in the past fourteen years. Both to my own work and others. And I’ve noticed that all authors have their own brand of mistake that they can’t see through. They may even critique it  in other groups, about other authors, without noticing it in themselves. This is normal. It’s not hypocrisy. Writers have blinders on when it comes to their work. It takes a long time to notice these mistakes and train themselves out of them, and a first draft, no matter how long the writer has been writing, will have these weaknesses. They crop up. Especially if the writer is trying to finish something in a certain period of time.

Here’s a few examples: Spelling. Personally I’m terrible at this and rely heavily on spell check and online dictionaries. Missed commas, missed words, repeated words in a few sentences that don’t reinforce a need or emotion in the characterization or plot.

This is why editors exist, grammar Natzi’s, if you wish. Harsh as that sounds.

But editing is more than grammar, more than copy, it even goes further than sentence structure and flow. There’s structure for a novel that comes into play – developmental editing is a term I keep seeing lately. For the best book on novel structure – in my opinion – see Larry Brooks Story Engineering.

What I see some editors miss, especially those not formally trained, is that the author has a voice and a style and a way of saying things that needs to be respected. Something to be noticed. And this style needs to be acknowledged in the editing, and the note taking for changes to be made in a manuscript. It’s not just a matter of deleting, changing, or modifying sentences, paragraphs or whole chapters of a book. Good editors, truly involve the author in the process.

If your editor isn’t doing this, it may be unconscious, or ego, or training, so give him or her a break, let them know. Don’t take everything they do as gospel, but, stay open to their ideas and suggestions. This has some of the same components of a writing group. It takes a certain amount of bravery. And in the case of an editor, you’re often paying for a service. This means you get to define the experience before it starts. So take part.

A good editor is like a good therapist, they take time to find. Look well.

Hug something today, rocks and walls don’t count.

Gerund Hillman

Gerund Hillman is the antagonist in Wolf: A Military P.A.C. Novel. When I wrote him I had in mind a man that was abused, verbally by his father, a control freak. His mother protected him, kept the abuse from becoming physical. Of course, this meant that Gerund saw her as weak, a martyr, and even a victim. he was just too young to realize just how strong she was. This dynamic led him to want power, to see it as a need and with that, the focus to know that money was a means to that power. To Gerund this was the same power his father had over him. Control. that was his drive, and it showed up in the dynamics he had with his version of P.A.C. the software developed by Samantha and Kerrigan that was adaptive. It just didn’t have the hardware modifications of the original P.A.C. units.

Creepy is what i thought of when I wrote him and when Faelon gave him his just desserts, well…I liked that scene. i had fun writing it. Gerund’s coming back in the second novel: Skinwalker.

Skinwalker

Skinwalker is the working title for the second novel in the Military P.A.C. novels.

Here’s an excerpt:

Frank reached slowly to his wallet and undid the chain, then he dragged the pig hide from his back pocket and tossed it to Jackie’s feet. “You don’t want to do that?” Frank itched to have a gun right now, or the knife strapped under his jacket, but that would take too long. Mostly he just wanted to back away from anything that smelled of gas. Too bad he couldn’t back away from himself. “You’re not ten feet from all that gas. It’s had enough time to build up a nice cloud of vapor. In all this cold it’s hanging around real good.”

“You know what a Cylon is?”

“Yeah kid, I do. Surprised you do.”

“F off then. I don’t need advice from a dead man.” He struck the flint-like cap of the roadside torch he held. An old one.

Frank started running in the opposite direction the sweet smell of gas clinging to him.

The torch flared up in a blaze of heat. Jack averted his eyes and threw the stick of fire.

Heat, thick and explosive welled up in a wall that drove Jack and the boys back from the motorcycle and the scream that ripped through the cold winter air.

Jack stared. He couldn’t move now that he had stopped. The heat felt like it was peeling the skin back from his cheek and the only thing cooling him down were the tears streaming over his face.

Something rolled into his leg as he wiped his nose with the back of his hand. Jack looked down. A toy motorcycle, its engine revving in a chaotic symphony of sound like a scream. So much like the scream rattling out of the burnt leathers on the road twenty feet away.

He picked it up. It was warm to his touch, then cold, and then warm again, as if it was shivering. He’d heard that burns made a man shiver like that, as if the nerves couldn’t figure out what was going on. A sob escaped his lungs, but he buried it before the boys behind him could see. Then he wiped at his face again, the motorcycle in his hand making his skin tingle as its Nano-fibers slid under his skin and a flush of chemicals followed.

He turned around and faced the two boys. “I got family now, right?” His hands hung at his side, he’d clenched them into fists not noticing the toy motorcycle was no longer in his hand.

“Yeah, Jackie, you got family.”

“Don’t call me that anymore.”

“Why not kid, it’s your name?”

Something slithered against his wrist, warm and cold, warm and cold, and it rumbled like an engine, or the shock pad of a gaming system. “No, it’s not. It’s Jack, and if you can’t use it right, I’ll find family that will.” He picked up the wallet and snapped the chain into place.

The two boys didn’t know where the steel in his voice came from but they listened real hard as they backed away from the crashed cycle and the wail of a police car in the distance.

Soon they were running away. Back to the area they called home and the leader of their gang. He called them his pack and that fit, because his name was Wolf.

 

 

Node Four: Name, Marlon. Primary Interface: Sergeant Frank Jackson Huer: Immolated.  Adapting. Primary Systems: Nominal. Organics Engine: online. Behavior and Emotional files: Abnormal. Command Structure: Missing.

Wolf Pleases Another Reader

KL Mabbs’ book is an exciting and fast-paced read! While it has genre elements of military, sci-fi, fantasy, and even romance, this book is at heart a chase novel. You’ll feel cold, wet, exhausted and afraid for Michael and Faelon as they flee their enemies. You’ll feel the adrenaline and excitement as they turn around and go on the hunt. And you will feel the creep in the small of your back as you come to understand who is hunting the hunters. Pick it up, read it, and prepare for a long night by a nice fire as the winter winds howl straight through to the end!

Samantha Ariyan

I had fun writing Samantha.

She’s a general in the Canadian Army of 2056, and a Liaison to the U.N. In this world the United Nations has power to act in defense of the world regardless of the voting countries. In this case it’s to keep the world in oil while it changes over to alternative power. There’s resistance. The States is slow to conform, relying on its own reserves. So is Iraq. But Samantha and her soldiers take what the world needs, as peacefully as possible.

When possible.

After the war, Samantha winds up with the Personal Adaptive Computer that belonged to her son. Due to the way it’s made, and bonded to its primary interface, it’s traumatized. It’s last order was to find an alternative Primary Interface. Samantha. She wants the link to her dead son and they soon come to an agreement that overrides the P.A.Cs self destruct mechanism.

Samantha is smart, sexy and aggressive. Follow her story in Wolf: A Military P.A.C. novel. Available at Amazon.