Category Archives: Fantasy Friday

Excerpt • The Dragon Rider’s Daughter

drdcoveridea6smallShe turned to discover the wizard had her sketchbook in his hands and was peering at her drawing. Her cheeks suddenly felt extraordinarily warm.

“Oh…I, um, just thought you and the puppy looked sweet together.”

He shot her a dark glance. “You should have asked my permission before drawing my portrait.”

“I didn’t want to wake you.” Humiliated beyond measure, Minna hastened to take the sketchbook from him. “Honestly, there’s no reason to be so sensitive. I didn’t mean any harm.”

His chin lifted. “I don’t much like being stared at when I’m dozing, thank you very much!”

Her temper flared. “Really? I had the impression you enjoy being stared at all the time.”

A muscle in his jaw quivered. “That’s my cue to go. If you’ll excuse me, I’ll get my coat.”

As he strode into the kitchen, Minna felt a pang of genuine remorse. Just because he’d caught her admiring him was no reason for her to be so churlish.

Evan returned, wearing his coat. “Thank you for the hot chocolate, Miss Westerfield. I’ll see myself out.”

“Wait.” She tore the sketch from the sketchbook, folded it into a square, and pressed it into his hands. “I’m sorry for being rude just now…and for disturbing your privacy.”

His expression softened. “I probably overreacted.”

“You didn’t. No hard feelings, I hope.”

“Of course not.” He gave her a crooked grin. “I was embarrassed to be caught sleeping, if you want to know the truth. What with all the thunder, I didn’t sleep well last night.” He tucked the folded paper into his coat pocket. “Listen, it’s none of my business, but with magical abilities like yours, it’s a shame you don’t use them openly.”

She feigned puzzlement. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“You don’t have to pretend.”

Any remorse she’d felt at her incivility shriveled up. “You’re right. It’s none of your business.”

Without warning, the wizard slid his arm around her waist and pulled her close. The hair on her forearms and the back of her neck rose. Unbidden, her gaze was drawn to his full lips.

“W-What are you doing?”

He looked at her askance. “Come on, Miss Westerfield. Can’t you feel the electricity between us?”

“I don’t know what you mean.” Shaken, she took a step back.

“We both have goose bumps.” He pointed at her bare forearms. “A wizard can sense magic, especially when it’s as powerful as yours.”

“You’ve overstepped the mark, Mr. Valentine.”

“I don’t think I have.” He raised one of his eyebrows. “Furthermore, I bet I’m not the only one who enjoys being stared at.”

She gave him a level glance. “You’re rather conceited, Mr. Valentine. Don’t get struck by lightning on your way out.”

Evan chuckled. “Oh, I was struck by lightning years ago, when we first met.”

“But we’ve never met.”

A flicker of disappointment crossed his features. “I didn’t think you’d remember.”

The Dragon Rider’s Daughter (to be released on 2/7/17) is available for pre-order HERE

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Tournament of Chance #Dragon Rebel #99cents

TOCDRSGRHeather is poised to win the Tournament of Chance…until the king has her arrested and marked for death. After a daring escape, she becomes a Dragon Rebel, seeking to overthrow the despotic monarchy and restore the Kingdom of Ormaria. Among the rebels are three shape-shifting wizards who claim to be rulers from the past. She joins them on a perilous quest to free the wizards’ magic, battling wild dragons, angry trolls, and unexpected traitors. In the end, she must choose between fulfilling her duty or following her heart.

Kindle $0.99 Countdown Deal lasts only until 6/21/16 HERE

Sneak Peek: Kira (Warrior Princess) by S.G. Rogers

cropped-banner.jpgI’ve been busy working on two projects simultaneously: an Edwardian-era romance entitled Jessamine’s Folly and a prequel to my Yden series entitled Kira (Warrior Princess). I hope to have Jessamine’s Folly ready for the Christmas season, but I thought I’d share a pivotal scene from Kira right now. I hope you enjoy it, and have a lovely weekend! ~ S.G. Rogers

ornament29medieval villageMurmuring voices woke Kira from an uneasy sleep in her horse’s stall. A sharp pain in her neck made her wince, and she cursed the circumstances keeping her from her comfortable bed at the lodge. It must be late…perhaps my virtue will be safe now. She dragged herself upright and stretched, but immediately ducked behind a pillar when she realized she wasn’t alone. Mandral was leading the huge black charger from its stall several yards away, while the wizard Patnik waited near the stable entrance.

“The current threat has been neutralized,” Mandral said. “It’s time to mobilize.”

Delicious shivers went down Kira’s spine at the man’s voice. She longed to touch his hand and feel the warmth of his smile. Don’t be foolish! It’s the love potion and these sensations are not real. 

“The wizard Dorsit has returned to Ylan, Warlord. If the Nomads seek his help, he may present a complication. I advise you to tie up the loose ends immediately,” Patnik said.

Dorsit is alive?

Mandral chuckled. “I don’t want her harmed. Kira Szul is under my thrall, and the idea of marriage to the Nomad leader’s daughter rather pleases me. With Kira at my side, Nomads will more readily accept a coup,”

Kira bit back a gasp. He knew who I was all along.http://www.dreamstime.com/-image5508750

“But—”

“Enough! I’ve paid the barmaid to slit the boy’s throat come morning, and Kira shall ride with me to her father’s encampment as my future bride.”

“With your permission, I’ll transport directly to our staging area. Captain Blane is awaiting your orders.”

“Tell him to send squads of Cygards to surround Eastknot Crossing immediately. Nobody is permitted in or out. I’ll meet you there to review the rest of my troops personally. At first light, the game begins.”

Mandral spurred his horse forward. As the warlord rode from the stable, Patnik transported away with a flash of light and the low boom of thunder. Kira let out the breath she’d been holding. Oh, Solegra! Nomad Territory is being invaded!

The Genie Rule Interactive Series

(Episode Four – Recap)

The Boss of the Netherrealm showed up at Peter’s apartment, fired Millie the genie for breaking the genie rules, and blew her the kiss of life.  Whistling “King of the Road,” he left her with Larry and Peter.  Horrified she’d been made human, Millie trained her big blue eyes onto Peter and said…

Episode Five

“There’s only one thing to do now.  We have to take a road trip to Vegas so I can file an appeal with the Supreme Court of the Netherealm.”

Peter and Larry exchanged a glance.

“Okay,” Larry said.

“No way!” Peter exclaimed.  “Unlike some people, I’ve got work in the morning.”

Millie’s lower lip began to tremble.

“Dude, you made the genie cry,” Larry said.  “Feel like a big man now?

“Shut it, Larry,” Peter said.  “We’re not going and that’s final.”

Five hours later, they were cruising down the Vegas strip with Peter behind the wheel of his dark blue Nissan Versa.  Millie leaned back in the passenger seat and gave Peter a dazzling smile.  “I love Vegas at twilight, don’t you? All the lights seem to come alive.”

From the back seat, Larry leaned forward and stuck a fistful of cold fries in between Millie and Peter. “You guys want? Otherwise I got dibs.” After a short pause, Larry shrugged, chomped the greasy potatoes down, and wiped his hands on his shirt.

As traffic came to a dead halt, Peter stared straight ahead.  “I can’t believe I let you two talk me into this.”

“You just haven’t seen the benefits yet,” Millie said.  “Get into the left-hand lane.  We’ll check into Caesar’s Palace.”

“Is that where the Supreme Court of the Netherrealm is?” Larry asked.

“No, but I need a wardrobe and I love the Forum shops.”

“I can’t afford Caesar’s Palace,” Peter mumbled.

A little smile played on the corners of Millie’s perfectly shaped lips. “I think you’ll find you can.”

Traffic was moving forward.  Horns began to sound but Peter could only gape at Millie.  “You didn’t.”

“I kinda used your last wish to add a few zeros to your bank account, Peter,” she confessed.

“How many zeros?” Larry asked, his eyes bugged out.

Millie counted on her fingers until she reached nine.  “That many.”

Larry burst out into insane laughter but Peter grew pale.

Magic Lamp: © Frenta | Dreamstime.com

Las Vegas: © Robwilson39 | Dreamstime.com

The Genie Rule – The Saga Continues

(Episode Three – Recap)

After Larry rubbed the lamp a gorgeous genie appeared to grant the usual three wishes.  She dupes Peter and Larry into using up two wishes.  Larry realizes that the whole wish thing is an invitation to disaster.  So for his last wish, he asks the genie’s real name.  This particular wish not only violates genie rules, but winds up (drum roll, please) summoning the Boss of the Netherrealm… 

Episode Four

A sudden knock at the door made everyone jump.  The genie scrambled for cover behind Peter and Larry. “Oh, crud, that’s my boss,” she whispered.  “Tell him I’m not here.”

Larry answered the door. A gum-snapping kid wearing an Angels baseball cap and a bad attitude sauntered past.

“What do you want, punk?” Larry asked.  “Whatever you’re selling, we’re not buying.”

The kid appraised Larry a moment.  “Unless you want that wire and cork banyan tree stuffed where the sun don’t shine, I’d tie a knot in that tongue, Bucko.  Where’s Mildred?”

“Who wants to know?” Peter asked.  He lifted his chin, trying to feign bravery.

The genie peeked over Peter’s shoulder.  “Hello, Boss,” she said with a nervous titter.

“Mildred, you’ve been on double secret probation for the last three hundred years.  Even the Netherrealm has rules you gotta follow.  You just won’t toe the line, babe. As of this moment, your genie privileges are revoked.”

When the kid blew Mildred a kiss, she gasped and let out a little scream.  “Not the Kiss of Life!  Come on, Boss, don’t make me human!”

The kid turned the brim of his baseball cap to the back.  “I wash my hands of you, Millie.  Larry and Peter, she’s your problem now.”

Whistling “King of the Road,” the kid disappeared with a pop of a huge, pink gum bubble.   Where he once stood was an origami unicorn made out of a bubble gum wrapper.  Ambrosia trotted over to the wrapper and began batting it around between her paws like a hockey puck.

The former genie sank onto the sofa, her head in her hands.

“What just happened?” Peter asked, stunned.  “I didn’t know a genie could get fired.”

As Millie turned her big blue eyes in his direction, Peter gulped.

“There’s only one thing to do now,” she sighed.

Thanks for playing! Come back next Friday to see the results!

– S.G. Rogers

Magic Lamp: © Frenta | Dreamstime.com

Just Down Right Pretty: © Crystal Kirk | Dreamstime.com

The Genie Rule – Interactive Series!

Recap:

(Episode One) Peter found an oil lamp at a flea market.  After Peter paid the merchant for the lamp, the gap-toothed fellow literally disappeared.  Peter met up with his friend Larry, who offered to trade him his lame cork-and-wire banyan tree sculpture for the lamp. Peter refused.

(Episode Two) The two men headed over to Peter’s studio apartment, where the cat Ambrosia was sleeping. Peter peeked inside the lamp, but was disappointed to find it empty.  Larry told him it was the genie rule to rub the lamp.  Peter objected but Larry got his hands on the lamp and rubbed it anyway. Ambrosia freaked as a real live gorgeous genie emerged from the lamp.

And now, Episode Three of The Genie Rule

Ambrosia streaked under the sagging sleeper sofa as the smoke solidified into a gorgeous woman.  Glistening tears slipped down her lovely cheeks as she read a worn copy of Old Yeller.  With a sobbing hiccup, the genie closed the paperback and tossed it into the air.  As the book vanished, so did the tearstains that marred her beautiful face.

“That gets me every time,” she sighed.

She peered at Peter and Larry.  Peter’s eyes had bugged out and Larry’s jaw was on the floor.

“Hello, boys. I have a massage at noon so let’s get started.  Three wishes, none of which involve wishing for more wishes or taking liberties with the genie.  What’ll it be?”

Her remarks were greeted by stunned silence, but the genie merely glanced around the room.

“This is a dump, if you don’t mind me saying so.  You should wish for a better crib.”

Peter finally managed to make his mouth work.  “What’s your name?”

The genie grinned.  “You wish to know my name?”

Larry jostled Peter with his elbows. “It’s a trick.  If you say yes, you’ll lose one of your wishes.”

“Hmm.  You’re not as stupid as you look, Larry,” the genie said.

Larry’s chest puffed up.  “Okay…I want a ’67 Chevy Camaro in red.”

The genie snapped her fingers.  “Done.  The keys are in the ignition.”

Galvanized by a sudden commotion outside, Larry and Peter bolted over to the window. A vintage car was parked in the parking lot, with a gas nozzle trailing from the tank.  In the passenger side front seat sat a bleached blonde bimbo, screaming her head off.

“We don’t want a stolen car!  Put it back right now,” Peter demanded, quivering with outrage.

“Fine.” The genie snapped her fingers again and the car disappeared.  “One more wish left.”

“Nuh-uh,” Larry protested.  “We got two more wishes!”

“You wished for the car and then you wished it away,” the genie said, ticking the wishes off on her fingers one by one.  “That’s two wishes gone.  Cough up the third.”

While the genie examined her manicure, Larry and Peter began to bicker with one another.

“It’s my lamp, Larry,” Peter insisted finally. “This game is way too dangerous.  Don’t you understand? Anything we wish will lead to trouble.”

Peter took a deep breath and stared into the genie’s eyes.

“I wish to know your name,” he said.

The genie blanched.  “Oh doggy doo doo.  Now you’ve gone and done it.”

Come back next Friday for the results!

Woman in A Fiery Flame: © Natalia7 | Dreamstime.com

Magic Lamp: © Frenta | Dreamstime.com

The Genie Rule – It’s Fantasy Friday!

Recap:  Last week, our Hero (we’ll call him Peter going forward) found a funny oil lamp at a flea market.  After Peter paid the merchant for the lamp, the gap-toothed merchant literally disappeared.  Peter met up with his friend Larry, who offered to trade him his totally lame cork-and-wire banyan tree sculpture for the lamp. 

What did Peter do?  The votes are in:  He took the oil lamp home, hoping it contained a wish-granting genie that wouldn’t knock his two front teeth out.

And now, back to our story…

Peter and Larry entered the modest studio apartment with their flea-market treasures in hand.  Dead asleep, Ambrosia was stretched out in the square of sunlight streaming through the sliding glass window.  Her little cat paws moved as she chased dream birds across an imaginary field.

“That’s cute,” Larry said, pointing at the feline. “Got beer?” He dumped his banyan tree on the coffee table, startling the cat awake.

“It’s ten o’clock in the morning, dude,” Peter said.

Larry shrugged.  “I’ll mix it with orange juice.”

“Help yourself,” Peter replied.

While Larry fixed himself a breakfast beverage, Peter examined the oil lamp.  He opened the lid and peered inside.  A smile tugged at his lips. “It’s empty.  You know, I half expected to find a genie inside.”

Larry took a sip of his orange beer and belched.  “You have to rub it. That’s the genie rule.”

Peter laughed.  “I’m not going to rub the lamp, Larry.  That’s stupid.”

“Give it here.  I’ll rub it.”

“No!”

As the two men tussled over the lamp, Larry spilled his drink on the off-white carpet. “Oops.”

Peter shot Larry a dark look.  He put the lamp on the counter and reached for a paper towel to mop up the stain.  With a mischievous giggle, Larry whipped out his shirttail and used it to rub the lamp.  For no apparent reason, a gust of wind swept through the room.  Ambrosia arched her back and hissed.

Come back next Friday to see the results of the tally and find out what happens next in the story!

– S.G. Rogers

Magic Lamp illustration: © Frenta | Dreamstime.com