Lone Wolf Rising
Book 1 in the Winters Saga Series
By Jami Brumfield
Revenge has deadly consequences. Seventeen year old Rebecca Winters’ main goal for ten years has been to graduate high school and take down the people who killed her parents. When she stumbled upon a werewolf pack in the middle of Phoenix, she knew she’d found a way to make her dream come true. Instead of getting vengeance, an act of war has put her into a position of power and forces her to put her thirst for family justice on a temporary hold.
He is duty bound to protect her. Lucian (Lucky) Lamont is a member of the Protectors, an elite supernatural police force who works for the Authority. Their main goal is to keep humans in the dark about the creatures who live among them. Lucky is assigned to protect and manage Rebecca, despite her refusal of help. His cover is simple; he poses as the dutiful ‘pretend’ boyfriend in order to keep an eye on the new alpha wolf.
She is his mate.
Gabriel Black though taking his pack back from the witch who was chosen as the new alpha would be simple. He thought wrong. His entire world was turned upside down the moment he met Rebecca at the Authority Council meeting…and he was hooked the moment he kissed her to prove she wasn’t dating his best friend, Lucky.
It’s like being torn between two lovers.
Rebecca is pulled in hundreds of different directions while she attempts to find a way to survive the supernatural world, protect her family, and discover who massacred her entire pack days before her first transformation. She doesn’t have time for romance.
But the heart wants what the heart wants.
And the wolf gets what the wolf wants – or so her alpha believes. While Rebecca manages to keep her head above water as she unlocks political and family secrets which could destroy her, she loses sight of the most important people in her life and one of them pays the ultimate price.
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“What are you doing here, Gabriel?” Rebecca crossed her arms over her chest.
“I see you two do know each other. He was—“ Savannah started talking, only to be interrupted again, this time by Gabriel.
“I was looking for you when I got the lovely pleasure of meeting your sister and brother,” Gabriel stated simply. “She offered to help me find you.”
"I told you that I would contact you. So, I ask again, what’re you doing here?" Rebecca didn’t like him around her family, not until she trusted him. There was obviously a reason why he was a rogue wolf and not a member of the pack. A reason she hadn’t discovered up to this point and until she did there was no reason to trust him.
"I didn’t know that my presence would be unwelcome." He glanced over at Lucky. "Perhaps that’s because you don't want the others to know you have a guard dog."
"Guard dog?" Savannah's forehead creased in confusion.
"Lucky is my boyfriend," Rebecca said the words too fast.
Gabriel chuckled. "Really? How convenient."
"What’s that supposed to mean?" Lucky took a step forward, but Rebecca motioned for him to stay beside her. She needed to show strength.
"I’m sorry, just the fact that you met a few days ago and today you’re dating." He flicked something off his dark green T-shirt which accented his emerald green eyes perfectly. "Seems a little suspect, don't you think?"
"A few days ago?" Savannah continued to get confused and this time the expression she sent Rebecca was one of hurt. She felt she was lied too, Rebecca could see it written all over her face. Rebecca could tell Savvy wanted to ask more, but Gabriel continued on with his deductive reasoning and Becca’s heart thumped a little faster at the danger zone they were quickly entering.
"That morsel of information coupled with the fact that I have known Lucky for most of my life, and he has never settled down or made any kind of commitment to another woman, even his mother, makes me question the validity of your relationship." Gabriel somehow maneuvered himself between Savvy and Rebecca as he tilted his head in a look that made Becca think he was judging her.
The heat that rose between them was instant and made her forget everyone else. Something about Gabriel intrigued Rebecca like no other, not even Lucky. Her wolf wanted to control him, her heart wanted to know him, and her mind wanted to trust him. But none of that would happen anytime soon. There was too much happening, too many things that needed to be worked out before other matters could be addressed. He was going to have to take a back seat on this ride for a while until she figured things out.
"What can I say, I’m a changed man." Lucky stepped in the tight space between Gabriel and Rebecca. He pulled her close and before she knew what was happening his lips crushed hers. Rebecca’s senses pressed the overload switch in her mind as sensations shot through her body at super speed. One thing was for certain, Lucky knew how to kiss. It was earth shattering. Rebecca was compelled to reciprocate as her hands wrapped around his neck and her body pressed against his.
The kiss was abruptly ended when Gabriel spun Rebecca around. Her body slammed against his rock hard chest. Without a word he crushed his lips on hers and adrenaline shot through her once more, only this was different, her wolf was increasing the intensity. It was like a roller coaster ride of emotions as her body reacted to his kiss. Her wolf assumed the control. All sense escaped her mind when his tongue rolled over her lips and she mentally cringed as a sigh escaped her lips when he pushed through the barrier those they made with ease. The kiss was almost violent as he alternated between licks and tiny nips on her lips. One even broke the skin. When that happened it was all over.
As quickly as the kiss started it ended. He pushed Rebecca back and stared at her as though she’d bit him. But it was he that bit her. She pressed her finger to her lightly bruised lip which was healing fast leaving only a few drops of blood on swollen lips. She could taste the coppery liquid on her tongue. There was no passion in the look Gabriel gave her, only discomfort and shock. The look knocked her ego down as she quickly rubbed her lips to remove all traces of him from her. His reaction intrigued the wolf and she realized the wolf was enjoying the chase, always the predator. Damn her!
"As you can see, a kiss can be faked." His tone was sharp and pointed like a serrated knife blade sawing into her confidence. His razor sharp tongue had knocked her down a few notches just as Lucky's fist abruptly knocked Gabriel down on his rear.
"Don't you ever touch my girl again!" The fierce protection that sang from his eyes and tense body reminded Rebecca of a coiled snake ready to strike again if the threat remained.
Gabriel spit blood from the cut on his lips. "I was simply trying to prove a point." His green eyes found her again. "You need us, Rebecca. Whether you like it or not, you do. I could’ve done much more than kiss you in those few moments." He glanced over at Savannah and Hunter. They were both watching in shock at the scene playing out in front of them. "If that doesn’t convince you, think of your family."
What inspired you to write Lone Wolf Rising?
I am passionate about reading young adult (or adult) paranormal and have always loved writing. It seemed like a logical leap for me to jump into the young adult paranormal romance genre and the Winters Saga was the product of that. I have always loved shifters and believe that an internal battle goes on between the human host and the animal and wanted to depict that in Lone Wolf Rising book one of the series. The idea of giving that animal a human voice and making it a cynical, wise-cracking personality came as the story inspiration unfolded.
Which character in your book would you say you are most like? If any.
There is a piece of me in most of my characters. Rebecca’s strength and Savannah’s positive outlook come from my own personality. Hunter’s loyalty and Natalia’s knowledge of alternative medicine also came from me. But if I have to choose only one character I think Rebecca is most like me, over the rest of them. In truth, I would have to admit most of the characters in my books have qualities from many of the people in my life I love and respect.
What inspired you to become a writer?
It started back when I was a child and saw my mother toil away daily writing her heart out. As I grew up I relied on writing in a therapeutic sense, specifically journaling. As a hypnotherapist and life coach I often recommend my clients journal as a way to work through problems and help them see things clearer. My love of the creative arts (dancing, singing, acting) combined with my love for writing is what inspired me to become a writer. Initially, I had planned to write non-fiction but my passion for the fictional paranormal romance genre won out.
What are you most excited about the most for readers to experience/learn from ‘Lone Wolf Rising’?
In Lone Wolf Rising readers will follow along with Rebecca as she learns revenge carries a heavy cost. The quote from Confucius “before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves” rings a bell with most readers of this book.
In book two of the series I hope readers experience or learn that family is irreplaceable and despite the hardships and challenges you face from family members mistakes they can be invaluable in your life.
Were you scared when you first published?
Absolutely! My fingers were shaking as I went to press the publish button, my breathing was shallow, my heart was racing, my pupils dilated… yes I was in the thralls of a parasympathetic nervous system response…Needless to say my stress level was at its max until I received my first review.
Did you feel exposed or vulnerable?
Without a doubt, I still do every time I get ready to put a new book on the shelves as I wait to see what kind of reviews come in.
I look at reviews like presents just waiting to be unwrapped. I love hearing what fans think of the book and appreciate any constructive feedback. Lone Wolf Rising has received some solid reviews on both Amazon and Good Reads which reinforces to me the book is a good product and entertaining read. I think whatever you pour your heart into and send out into the world makes you feel a little vulnerable and exposed but positive even constructive reinforcement helps to reduce those feelings and build confidence in your ability to entertain and ultimately that is what all authors of fiction are looking to do, entertain. Right?
Do you have ideas for dream cast members for your book?
Oh yes! Someone like Claire Holt or Britt Robertson would be great in the role of Rebecca and Savannah, the role calls for someone who can play dark and dangerous and also sunshine and rainbows. Gabriel was written with someone like Ian Somerhalder, a dark Chace Crawford, or Thomas McDonnell in mind. Someone like Toby Regbo, Bradley James, or Chad Michael Murray would do nicely in the role of Lucky. A young Charlie Hunnam or Kellan Lutz would be great in the role of Hunter. Helen Mirren or Judi Dench would be great in the role of grandmother Catherine.
What do you do on your down time?
When I’m not writing, reading or sleeping I try to spend as much time with my family and friends. They are very important to me. What do you do to relax? I love to sing, dance, and meditate to relax.
What do you love most about being a writer/author?
I love creating new characters and worlds hidden just below the surface of reality – supernatural sub-cultures and I love being able to challenge the mythological stories with new spins on the traditional belief.
What do you hate most about being a writer/author?
The editing process. If creating a story is my strength editing the story is my greatest weakness. But I know how important it is to creating a story and make sure I do my best in this area.
What writers/authors have inspired you?
This list is long and consists of traditionally published authors, small press published authors and self-published authors. Instead of listing them all I’d like to give a little recognition self-published author and a very dear friend, Michele Gwynn, who has been one of my biggest supporters and my greatest inspiration lately. She was instrumental in helping me get Lone Wolf Rising published and motivating me to share this story.
When you get stuck in a story, how do you get through it?
I start by walking away from the computer and meditating. If I am still struggling I open another story I have in my files and work on that. That usually does the trick.
Do you listen to music when you write?
Oh yes! I have different stations programmed into Pandora pick which station to play depending on what type of scene I am working on.
Can you write anywhere?
Pretty much as long as I have a laptop or notebook and pen I can write.
Do you have advice for aspiring authors?
Don’t give up and don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. As an author you have a voice and there are people who will connect to that voice they are just waiting for you to publish so they can find you.
What was the worst advice you were given in the beginning of your writing career?
I was told I needed to write material for the market. Writing something that was not mainstream would not find a publisher or an audience to market to. I know there is logic behind that but to really unleash your creative capabilities you have to be able to feel free to write what you want not what is hot on the market at the time.
What was the best advice you were given in the beginning of your writing career?
You can’t please 100% of the people 100% of the time. Once you have that understanding the ups and downs in the writing arena are easy to navigate.
Jami M Brumfield has a passion for the paranormal, supernatural, and mythological worlds for most of her life. She believes there is a kernel of truth in every story and loves playing detective to discover what that hidden truth is. She has written most of her life. She started with poems and short stories, then graduated to journalism working for online websites like examiner.com. It was only a natural progression that her love of writing and her passion for the unknown would combine. Lone Wolf Rising the first book of the Winters series is the product of that union.