Unforgettable Angels With Tricia Skinner & Giveaway!
Welcome to Mother/Gamer/Writer for the Angel Bait Blog Tour. For Today’s tour stop, please enjoy a guest post on Tricia Skinner’s, “Unforgettable Angels”, an excerpt, and enter to win a copy!
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Saved by the angel sent to kill them, four half-angel boys are trained and employed as Heaven s assassins. Jarrid and his nephilim brothers are raised as members of The Eternal Order, and must enforce Heaven s laws by hunting down those who defy the Directorate.
His only shot at freedom is Ascension, but his employers won t permit the ancient ritual. Then Jarrid learns a Renegade angel is in Detroit. Such a high-level take-down is the answer to his prayers – all the leverage he needs to Ascend.
For freedom, Jarrid is willing to do anything to lure his elusive enemy out of hiding.
Even use an innocent woman as bait.
News reporter Ionie Gifford has no clue an angel outlaw wants her dead. She agrees to help Jarrid, the enigmatic nephilim with penetrating silver eyes and a worship-worthy body, but only because he accepts her terms. He s her all-access pass into the city s supernatural underworld where she hopes to locate her mother s killer.
Blindsided by Ionie s beauty and tenacity, Jarrid soon finds the eternity-old glacier around his heart thawing. With duty and desire at war within him, he s forced to make a choice – either save Ionie from the trap he snared and stay chained to Heaven, or allow her to become collateral damage.[/note]
The “angels” who are partly responsible for certain characteristics found in ANGEL BAIT, my debut novel, have a common element – they are unforgettable. If you take a look at the following films and television shows, a reader might spot the loyalty, fierceness, sacrifice, and loss that helped define my angel assassins Jarrid, Cain, Kasdeja, Tanis, and Nestaron. One would also get a few clues to vengeance, retribution, anger, and mistrust layered in each of The Eternal Order and the villians Beleth and Saul.
Why Unforgettable: Two words, baby. Tilda Swinton. My crush on her is epic, and I’ve enjoyed all of her films simply because she was in it. Her portrayal of the Archangel Gabriel opposite Keanu Reeves’ Constantine played up her androgynous good looks. What I loved about her version of Gabriel was the staunch belief she could force mankind to live up to the great blessings bestowed on it. Of course, Gabriel planned to do this by given humanity over to the Devil, which was decidedly un-angelic.
Fave Quote: “It’s only in the face of horror that you truly find your nobler selves. And you can be so noble. So, I’ll bring you pain, I’ll bring you horror, so that you may rise above it. So that those of you who survive this reign of hell on earth will be worthy of God’s love.”
Film: The Prophecy
Angels: Gabriel and Lucifer
Why Unforgettable: Five words – Christopher Walken and Viggo Mortensen. Yeah, you read that right. The two intriguing actors starred in the low-budget fantasy thriller. Walken’s Gabriel is the kind of pissed-off and jealous angel I imagined for most of Angel Bait’s ruling board, the Directorate. I wanted those beings to show all levels of human emotion multiplied by ten. As Lucifer, Mortensen brought more of the twisted logic “I’m not a bad guy” that I wanted to flow through all the angels and fallen angels in my story. The Renegade angel, Beleth, believes in his cause and doesn’t see why his misdeeds should keep him an outlaw.
Fave Quote (Gabriel): “I’m an angel. I kill firstborns while their mamas watch. I turn cities into salt. I even, when I feel like it, rip the souls from little girls, and from now till kingdom come, the only thing you can count on in your existence is never understanding why.”
Film: The Crow
Angel: The Crow (Angel of Vengeance)
Why Unforgettable: Ah, did this one surprise you? I remember when this film came out after the unexpected and tragic death of actor Brandon Lee. As a fan of the original comics, I sided with those who believed The Crow was the Angel of Vengeance returned to right a wrong. Others believed it was a simple ghost-revenge story. Regardless of where you stand, no one can deny the love story was heartbreaking, thus making the retribution all the sweeter. The Crow provided layers for hero Jarrid, including his struggle to achieve his goals by any means necessary.
Fave Quote: “He was already dead. He died a year ago, the moment he touched her. They’re all dead. They just don’t know it yet.”
Why Unforgettable: Oh, Misha Collins. Those blue eyes doth slay me. Yet, Castiel provided so much fodder for The Eternal Order. They question their orders, battle against right and wrong, and are floored by emotions that leave all of them changed. Each character faced a personal crisis when it came to using heroine Ionie Gifford as bait, and Castiel helped me write those emotions – of an angel at a crossroads – in a much more believable way (at least, I hope).
Fave Quote: “Read the Bible. Angels are warriors of God. I’m a soldier.”
Jarrid remained silent, but chaos cranked his mind. The chance there’s a Renegade in his city was so remote, so improbable. Yet if the elf spoke true, the tip meant one more score to settle. And one giant step closer to Ascension.
He turned the idea over in his head. Ascension would only be granted if he attained something considered more valuable than him remaining under Heaven’s heel. Would a capture force the ruling angel Directorate to reward his team?
A fragile thread of hope connected to another, and another, until his heart and mind grabbed hold. He had to find the Renegade, minus interference from the angels. But the information was vague at best. One woman in a city of millions? Where the hell would he start?
YuL shook his head. “I swear that’s all I got, man. I didn’t know who they were talking about, but I know Renegades hold a special place with you angels.”
“I’m no angel, you piece of shit.” He’d never been considered pure enough by those pricks to count as anything more than a half-breed. That’s all the nephilim were to them. Half-angel and half-human. Abominations.
Color drained from the elf’s face. “I was gonna trade the info for what I owe. I can’t believe they sent an assassin after me.” YuL cupped his hands together. “Christ, I don’t owe that much. Please don’t kill me, man. Please.”
He ignored the hysterics and tapped the earpiece concealed by his hair. “Intel retrieved.”
If the elf’s info was solid, the next few days would be crucial to tracking the outlaw and snuffing the bastard. A familiar hatred bubbled under his skin and Jarrid’s grip tightened on the dagger’s hilt. He was here because of Renegades — the former Watcher angels who’d impregnated human women to create their half-breed race. Now, he was forced to serve Heaven.
Since his mother’s death.
Since his own imprisonment.
Since the angel sent to kill him spared his life.
The elf scrabbled backwards against the piss-stained wall. “Just let me go. I won’t tell a soul.”
“By decree of the holy host, YuL of Elven, you have broken a sacred covenant with Heaven and have been deemed unworthy of forgiveness.”
Jarrid buried the dagger deep into the elf’s heart. Confused orange eyes stared at the dagger, and then at him as if they tried to memorize the face of death. Finally, the spark behind those eyes slipped away.
“Your life is forfeit.”
YuL’s Adam’s apple bobbed twice then stilled.
Extracting the blade, Jarrid rose and considered the body slumped on the wet pavement.
“You can’t fuck with Heaven, pal. It has bigger dicks.” He shrugged and stood at parade rest, bracing himself for the aftermath of another completed mission. After two, maybe three breaths, white-hot pain flash-fried his veins, making his body sway. Then it flambéed his internal organs.
The Act of Contrition. What a bitch.
After spending several years as a newspaper reporter and corporate communications director, Tricia Skinner cast off traditional journalism for the freedom of novel writing. ANGEL BAIT is her urban fantasy romance debut. Her reading tastes are all over the place, but she’s mainly drawn to fantasy (and its subgenres), paranormal, sci-fi, and history.
In those rare moments when she’s not writing, Tricia is a newbie “green” practitioner, a fitness procrastinator, and a technology geek. She is a mother and a wife. Her family includes two Great Danes.
Tricia stays active in various writing communities. She is represented by Laurie McLean of the Larsen Pomada Literary Agency.
She welcomes correspondence from readers. Visit her online at www.TriciaSkinner.com.
Twitter: @KaziWren / Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/kaziwren/