Monday, August 22, 2011

From Under A Texas Star - Marly Landers

Tonight on Nighthawk Talk, we welcome back Marly Landers from El Paso.

I'm not from El Paso, I'm headed for El Paso. I notice that nice Cherie girl isn’t here. Does that mean I won’t be asked about my glutes and abs? I never did find out what she meant.

We won’t talk beauty tips this time.* Instead, perhaps you could tell us about your journey so far.

That's a long story. Aunt Adele was sending me to a convent school. I’d rather not go into the reasons. Let’s just say, I had other plans. So, I purposely took the wrong train out of Kansas City. Then I had steal boys clothes and muddy my trail so my aunt wouldn't figure out where I was going. Not that she would care too much but I bet she made Sheriff Langtree look for me when I didn't turn up...

How about starting when you met Ranger Strachan?

I guess I first noticed him in Abilene but we met in Dogflats. By that time I was having to walk or hitch rides to get from town to town. He'd been following me for a couple of days – though he said I was following him. He bought me a steak dinner after I gave my supper away to Mr Hayes. He lost his son in the war and he really wanted to blame someone but mostly he was just sad and drunk and whatever Jase might think, I don't think he really would have hurt me.

Excuse me?

He only left a little bruise. I got much worse falling of Trouble.

Your horse?

Jase's horse really. I was borrowing it. Except.... well... I really did feel like he was mine. That's what made it so sad when...


You know, this is really something the way I can talk to you and people all over can hear me. Is it like the telegraph? Does my voice carry over wires?

Sort of. What about Trouble?

He was a good horse, even if he deserved his name. Jase said you were going to ask me about being a detective - though I'm hardly that. I just helped out some with the murder investigation. I mean I did figure out who killed Marshal Strothers, but Jase was the one that proved the case and even if I did break up a few bar fights, I think he only made me deputy to keep me safe.

Marly, do you ever run out of breath when you talk?

<chuckle> Sometimes.

You can find out more about Marly Landers in Under A Texas Star, by Alison Bruce
* And in her previous Nighthawk Interview.

Under A Texas Star is available in paperback at, and Barnes and Noble on sale in eBook format at , and Smashwords.

Monday, August 15, 2011

From Under A Texas Star

Welcome back to Nighthawk Talk. Tonight we have a blast from the past, Texas Ranger Jason Strachan. Howdy, Ranger.

Good evenin'.

The Texas Rangers are legendary. Their history goes back to the early years of the American colonization of Texas when Stephen F. Austin hired ten experienced frontiersmen as rangers for a punitive expedition against a band of Native Americans. In 1835, the Texas Rangers were formally created as a law enforcement and defensive organization.

Sounds about right.

What made you join the Rangers?

Somethin' t' do.


It was the Civil War. My father joined the Confederate Army out of a sense of duty or maybe because it was the thing to do at the time. I was to stay home and take care of my mother and sister.

 You didn't.

I did for awhile, but I was young, foolish and in love with the idea of adventure. Still, I joined the Rangers because I saw it as a way I could protect my family. We mustered to guard our home state from Comanches and banditos - not other Americans. As it happened, when things were getting desperate, we were sent east to fight.

 That's when you met Miss Jezebel.

Eventually. She and Fred rescued me when I was injured and helped get me back home. I will always be beholden to her for that.

You were lovers?

I'm gonna pretend I didn't hear that last question, else I'd have to assume you were casting aspersions on my honor as a gentleman.

You were close friends?

I will always consider Jez my good friend. She was there when I needed her and I will always try to be there when she needs me.

 Which is what brought you to Fortuna when she asked for your help.

<chuckle> That was plain old good luck. Her message caught up with me a couple of days after we arrived in Fortuna.

By we you mean you and Marly Landers.

Yep. But before you ask the question I know you're dying to ask, think about how much you like your nose unbroken.

Uh - I was only going to ask how Landers worked out as your deputy.

Fine. Landers is a natural born detective - observant and nosy.

 Will you work together again?

Maybe you best ask Landers that question.

Maybe I will. Marly Lander was a guest on Nighthawk just before our change in venue. If you'd like to read the transcript of her earlier interview, click here.

Under A Texas Star is available in paperback at, and Barnes and Noble on sale in eBook format at , and Smashwords.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

From Storyteller

Welcome listeners to another edition of Nighthawk Talk.  I've had my eagle-eye on Abby for a while. For one thing, if I don't watch out, she might rob me blind.

Abby, what brought you to Paris?

One summer we drove to a farm outside a small town in Manitoba to visit my great aunt Abigail and celebrate her birthday, August eight, the same day as mine.

She was one hundred. Nineteen years and a dozen lifetimes later and I still can't imagine being so old. Her face wrinkled like tissue paper when she smiled, but her hair was so incredibly long. She let me help her comb it before she rolled it up with what must have been a million bobby pins. Her white hair flowed past her ass and nearly touched the floor.

Sorry. Can I say ass?

Anyway, she was so glamourous, you know, even with the wrinkles and the teeth she kept in a jar. She gave me a few beauty tips I've never forgotten. Always use moisturizer. Always go to bed thankful. Always laugh.

When we piled into the car to drive home, she reached into the back seat where I was squished between my sisters and gave me a little blue bottle of perfume. Evening in Paris. I was the only one she gave a present to, but then, it was my birthday, too. I refused to use the perfume. Instead I would sit at the window for hours, twisting the bottle this way and that, and watch as sunlight reflected through the blue glass to dance on my walls, my floor, the fair skin on my forearms. I would daydream about evenings in Paris, far away from the noise and chaos of my family. Far away from where I was teased for being the youngest and the smallest. I hated being teased, and I knew no one in Paris would tease me.

Years went by and the perfume evaporated. Such a waste. I still have the bottle, a reminder to cherish everything I'm given.

Wow. I never told anyone that story before. What did you put in my drink?

Tell us a bit about your Paris. What areas do you "work"? What place do you retreat to when you need time away from your "job".

For practical reasons, I like to stay close to the metro. It's a fast and easy way to get to work, fits my budget, and the ridership provides camouflage if anyone notices too quickly that their watch, their pocketbook or their jewellery is missing. There is safety in numbers: safety from identification. I can dissolve into the crowd any time I choose, like a ghost, or the disappearing vapour of Evening in Paris.

Plenty of ripe marks spill out of the metro in droves, ready to be plucked, a stream as steady and reliable as the Metro's schedule. Over four million passengers a day. Can you imagine?

My favourite station is Gare de Chatelet-Les Halles. It is a great hub of connecting trains--and passengers, of course. The station is below the Forum des Halles, an underground shopping district. Tempting as it is, with everyone crushed together like the sardines in the fish markets of Rue Montorgueil, I never conduct business on the trains. For one thing, I am trapped. For another, too many cameras.

And I adore strolling down Rue Montorgueil. To me, it is the essence of Paris. You can have your Eiffel Tower and your Champs-Elysees, your Louvre. I'll take la Rue M. Cheese shops, wine shops, flower shops. Quaint cafes. The people that frequent my road come with good taste and rolls of cash. I take their money, indulge my tastes. It's a win-win. For me.

But do you have a place where you leave business behind and just be yourself - no role playing, no manipulation?

Seriously?You're playing me, right? Here is my philosophy, so listen up: Life is a role. Life is a game. I'm a little better at it than everyone else. And I'm always working, always onstage. But if you mean my downtime, where I like to go when I need to be alone, I have a room--not an apartment but a room, and no, I can't tell you where--but it's big and boxy, like a warehouse. I have a purple velvet chair in a corner, tucked under a corner window so there is light coming in from two sides. The chair is round and big enough for me to curl up in. I look out the window and daydream, I paint my toenails, I read books. Lots of books. Its a great place to watch people, watch the sky, watch the rain. It's a good place to write down ideas, or letters I'll never send.

It's also a good place to nap.

Oh, and any sidewalk cafe, or in winter, a cafe with a window seat. I could live off cappuccino. Light sprinkle of cinnamon on top. Yum.

Do you see yourself retiring from you current employment, or leaving Paris? If so, what next?

Hm. That is a very good question, Nighthawk, and I'm so glad you asked. I can't do this forever. Can I?

There is more to my story. I have commissioned the author to expand to novel length but her schedule is tight so I can't be sure when, or if, it will ever get to print. There is rumour of a romance, romance with a man whose wit and passion and desire could match or surpass my own. As if. Imagine me, tamed and tempered by love? Jamais! Never!

Whoever my lover is, I do hope he will always bring me flowers.

Flowers? Now there is an idea. Perhaps I could wear a little white apron, carry trimming shears in my pocket, and buy one of those little flower shops I love so much. And if a couple happens by my little shop, the woman smells the bouquets but her escort does not buy the lilies or roses she so desires, who am I not to relieve the cheapskate of his wallet?

If he bought the flowers, he'd have the flowers, the girl, and his money. C'est la vie.

Thank you, Abby. Let's finish off with a plug for your author, Sherry Isaac in hopes that people drop by her website, by the book with your story, and nag her to continue your tale.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

From Rowena Through the Wall

Good evening. Joining us tonight are Gareth and Cedric, natural enemies here under a truce to speak you, faithful listeners.

Gentlemen, your story can be read in Rowena Through the Wall, but it's told from the lady's point of view. We'd like to get your perspective on events. For instance, what was you first impression of Rowena?

A goddess from the other-worlds – that is what I thought when I walked through the wall to gaze upon her for the first time.  She had been in my dreams for weeks…planted there by the Dreamweaver wizard.  I traveled through time to find her.  I would walk through hell to keep her.

Cedric (laughing harshly):
I saw her too late!  In the chapel, where my worthless brother wed her, not minutes before.  She should have been mine!  I was the eldest.  No matter – she is mine, in all ways now.  A bonny wench, but oh, so much more.  My Valkyrie!  Riding like a man across the fields, facing down the brigands in the glen…a fitting bride for this disciple of Lucifer.

So, you see her as your bride, though she's married to your brother.  Gareth, are your intentions, pardon the cliché, honorable?

She is my love and my dear wife.  I need to protect her by bringing her north with me, to the rugged lands where I am Lord and have firm allies.  She is everything to me, my lady, my love, my wife.

So Rowena has three husbands?
Rowena is my mate before my Lord Lucifer, and she carries my unborn child. Hear me well! I will kill any man who comes between us.  Know it to be true; I’ve killed two already, with my own hands: my worthless brother, and the King himself.  More trash is nothing to me.  Lucifer feeds my black power, and it grows daily.  Stay well away, and leave me with my mate.

(Sound of steel being drawn)

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