Friday, September 13, 2013
Shades of Pink Teaser - I Already Am by Catherine Bowman
Every day until the end of September, I will post here the blurb for one of the stories from the Shades of Pink charity anthology, as well as a teaser, and a short bio for the author. The anthology will be available on October 1st, with all proceeds going to breast cancer research. I invite you to come back, share the links for these teasers, tell your friends about it... It's all for a good cause! And if you tweet about it, you can use the hashtag #shadesofpink :)
Today, a glimpse from I Already Am by Catherine Bowman
Determined loner McKenna is being pursued by a man her soul recognizes as its mate. It isn’t until she is beaten by a rejected suitor that she truly sees the man within and allows herself to love him.
Dougall McCalleum stopped, closed his eyes and inhaled deeply. He ignored the people bumping into him in the crowded Barras Market and took a moment to savour the scent of the woman he’d come to think of as his. Doug is the Master at Arms of Glasgow’s Four Claw Wolf Pack. His mother was a Wolf, a fourth generation member of the pack, who had been raped by a demon. The union produced the unique combination of humour and temper that is the slim, wiry, café au lait coloured Doug.
The object of his affection was McKenna Amberson, artiste extraordinaire. The tall redhead with a porcelain complexion and elfin features was entrenched in his heart the first time they spoke. The connection was instant and he knew she knew it though, for her part, McKenna didn’t want to acknowledge it. After everything she’d been through—molestation when she was but ten years old, a mugging, an attack by a Tiger and the death of her mentor—she had no room in her life for flirting or for men.
It just made Doug work that much harder.
Doug, who was in the marketplace with his female Alpha, his Beta and two others, touched the Beta’s sleeve and gestured slightly at McKenna before slipping off. He stopped a few booths away to admire her wares. She drew fantasy figures—fairies, dragons and wizards—including ones humans only thought were fantasy. She had mugs, prints in frames and calendars but her biggest seller was the line of clothing. She had socks with her baby dragon drawings on the sides, t-shirts and hoodies with her work silk screened on the front.
What made him like her most was the line of pink clothing. She sold pink versions of her clothing, even aprons, all with strong women drawn on the front—warrior princesses, vampires, fairies queens—for Breast Cancer Awareness. Each item of clothing had the pink ribbon displayed discreetly on it. People came from all over to buy her work because she refused to set up a website people could order from. It was merely a single page with her location, some pictures of her work and a weekly schedule. Occasionally, a gallery showing popped into her schedule.
“Why?” he’d asked her once.
“I’m an artist, not a factory,” she replied. For once, she was looking thoughtful, rather than annoyed. “I create each piece myself. I conceive of the theme for the image then sketch it out and decide on the medium for the original work. Yes I have someone else do the prints, calendars and most of the clothing but for the Pink things,” she always capitalized the P when she talked about it, “I silk screen each piece myself. It makes it more personal and, I think, more meaningful for the women who wear it.”
Doug had smiled at her and told her he admired her. She had blushed then scowled at him and told him to piss off. He’d only come back the next day with a cup of tea for her.
Today he stopped at a small patisserie and bought her a chocolate croissant and a cup of wild blueberry tea with a hint of honey. He sauntered towards her with his hands behind his back and watched as she lifted her head, nostrils flaring. He could smell ink and knew that today she was doing the silk screening on site. Those days were scheduled so customers could come and get autographs on the work they chose.
“Hello, my love,” Doug said with a smile.
McKenna lifted an ink stained hand and pointed at him. “I’ve told you not to call me that. What have you got behind your back?” She told herself that it hadn’t been his scent, the one that made her think mine!, but the smell of the tea and food he carried that had her nostrils flaring as he approached.
Doug displayed his prizes with a flourish. “I thought you might be hungry, Mac. I’ll wager you didn’t eat breakfast this morning.” He held the croissant up.
Mac snatched up a rag and gave her hands a swipe before almost lunging at the food. She devoured the croissant in three bites, the first one from Doug’s fingers. She had grabbed his wrist and chomped down before taking it from him. Her eating from his fingers was something that was happening more and more and she wasn’t really aware of it.
Doug smiled as he watched her eat then handed her the tea. “How has your week been, a ghraidh?”
She paused in the act of lifting the fragrant tea to her mouth and pointed at him again. “It doesn’t matter what language you do it in, do not call me ‘my love.’”
Catherine Bowman is the author of the Highland Wolves series and a lifelong writer. She lives in Southwestern Ontario with her two kids, her boyfriend and a cat named Terror. Catherine has reached a point in her life’s journey where she has finally learned who she is – writer, student, mother (to more than just her children) and lover. Her attitude is reflected in her writing. She can be found talking about her life and writing, as well as showing off her photography hobby at her blog http://catherinebowman.wordpress.com/