Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Nephy is here with Christmas in July, and a contest!

Christmas in July


On July 1st I will be pleased to present a Special Edition incorporating Book I and II of the Enigma series. The Special Edition will be available for one month only and will contain original artwork as well as a brand new short story Silver’s First Christmas. 

Let me introduce you to my lovely Silver in all his glory, the unique enigma that he is. I have written about him in what, so far, is a series running to five books, of which the first two have now been released as Enigma and Enigma II – Fighting the Man.  
In all, there are five blog posts celebrating the conception of Christmas in July. On each blog there is a question. If you answer all three questions correctly you will be put in a drawer for a free copy of the book and signed poster.

Enigma I

River wants to be a nurse. He is working towards the fulfilment of his dream by working as a carer is a Care House. Residents come and go and River learns to keep a professional face no matter how difficult the resident might be. Then Silver arrives and turns his world around. 

After six months in a coma following an apparent attempt on his life, Silver is locked inside his own mind, interacting with the outside world on only a very basic level. Right from the beginning River struggles to keep his feelings for the beautiful and enigmatic, Silver on a professional footing. 

As Silver slowly opens up it becomes more and more difficult for River to look on him with purely professional eyes. As their love grows River becomes more and more suspicious that Silver’s mental health problems may arise from a past more horrific than anyone had previously imagined and when that past explosively catches up with them he is caught in a nightmare that threatens not only to destroy but to end both of their lives. 

Escaping from an impossible situation thanks to River’s quick thinking and a professionalism he thought he had lost, they think they have finally laid the past to rest and can face a future where they can openly declare their love and live a live free from fear.

But the past is not going to let them go that easily and once again catches up with them. With danger facing them down the barrel of a gun River, once again, saves them with explosive and tragic consequences. 

Still the past will not leave them alone and, as Silver slowly grows more and more distant and their love seems doomed River makes a final attempt to lay the past to rest once and for all. 

Will Silver be able to finally break away from his past and make a future with River? That depends on a priest, a painting and a long walk through a churchyard.


Silver turns his eyes on her impassively, seeming to be perfectly at ease but completely detached. 

“Do you want some coffee?” 

Silver turns to Max and gives him the same empty look. “Coffee?” Max holds up a mug and Silver stares at it. 

“Try him with some, Max.  I don’t think he’s good at making decisions.”

Max nods and pours a mug of coffee, putting milk and sugar in it.  He hands it to Silver who takes it and stares at it for a while before releasing it with a cry so that it falls to the ground smashing on the tiles and splashing everyone, who jump back; everyone except Silver. 

“Fuck! What the hell are you doing?  Be careful, that’s hot.” 


“Yeah... fucking hot.”  Max sounds annoyed, brushing at his soaked trousers.  “Fuck!  I am going to have to change.  Come on Julia; we don’t have time for breakfast: I am going to have to call in at home for clean trousers.  We can eat at the college, they do good breakfasts; my treat.”

Julia laughs and slips daintily off the table.  Silver’s eyes swivel to her and she reaches up to touch his face.  He is tall, taller than me by a couple of inches and she has to reach up high. 

“Don’t worry.” She smiles her beautiful, sweet smile and it is almost reflected on Silver’s face. “Max’s bark is worse than his bite.  Remember though; coffee is hot; okay?”  Silver nods, blinking and Julia takes his hand, stroking the palm with her small delicate fingers.  I note with some surprise that his hands are not much bigger than hers, although the fingers are long and look dextrous. 

“Does it hurt?”  When there is no response she puts one hand on his face again, smiling into his eyes. “Does it hurt, Silver, beautiful Silver?  Did the cup burn your hand?”  Slowly he nods and looks down at his scarlet palm.  There doesn’t seem to be any pain in his eyes.  There doesn’t seem to be anything much at all. 

Julia leads him to the sink and turns on the cold water drawing his hand, palm upwards, under the stream.  He doesn’t try to pull it away although I know it must be stinging like hell. 

“Fuck.” We have all been so riveted by the interaction between Silver and Julia that we completely forgot about the coffee mug, which smashed when it hit the tiled floor. Silver had walked over it when Julia had drawn him to the sink and now there is blood mixing with the coffee on the tiles. 

Ronya quickly scoops up the remaining china and I gently steer Silver away from the sink again and into a chair.  Lifting his foot it is a relief to see that there is only one small sliver of china embedded in the ball of his foot.  I pull it out as gently as I can but he doesn’t even flinch.  I look up and meet his eyes; they are as impassive as ever. 

“What the hell?” Max exclaims. 

“Don't sound so surprised. Haven’t you read the file?” 

“No; he’s your baby.” 

“Ah. Well, welcome to our happy home, Silver.  Shall we try again with the coffee?” Silver shakes his head. 

“No coffee... hot.” 

His voice is like a gentle rain shower on a hot day, cool and refreshing to the ear and the mind.  God is there no end to this boy’s beauty?  He must have been a really nasty piece of work: no one can look and sound as good as this and be nice. 

Ronya, finishing cleaning up the glass, hands me the first aid box from under the sink and I swab Silver’s foot with an antiseptic wipe, although the bleeding has already stopped.  I put a plaster on it and then release him.  He simply sits and looks blank. 

“What is it with him?  I have to admit I am finding this a little spooky now.” 

“Read the file, Max.” 

Julia crouches at the side of the chair and looks into Silver’s eyes, pushing the heavy tangle of hair out of the way.  She smiles and he mirrors it.  “He’s just hiding.  We all have our own ways of doing that.  He’ll be alright, won’t you sunshine?” He smiles uncertainly and his eyes follow her as she bounces to her feet and out of the door calling back.  “Come on, Max; you’re going to make us late and then you’ll have to shout for lunch too.” 

Enima II – Fighting the Man

Silver has been freed from sexual slavery and settled down with River, who adores his lover and former patient, yet cracks begin to form when it becomes increasingly obvious that the stress of constantly having to care for Silver, begin to tell on River. When River’s parents die, leaving him to care for his 12 year old brother it, at first, seems that the introduction of the lively twelve year old into the mix was going to do them all the world of good. However, when spiteful relatives involve Social Services, the previous flaws nearly rip them all apart. 

Faced with the dilemma of keeping either Ben or Silver at home and sending the other to stay with Sam, a personal friend, River chooses responsibility for his brother over his love and concern for Silver. Things come to a head when a series of misunderstandings lead Silver to believe River doesn’t love him anymore and that everyone is secretly ashamed of him because of his past. After running away, Silver reasons the only place he can fit in is with his own kind and he sets out to search of a new “home.” 

At the Theatre de la vie he meets Tony, a club owner with big ideas, who ‘looks after’ a group of young men who dance and “entertain” patrons of the club. There, among others, Silver finds Ariel, an ephemeral little minx with a knack for getting into trouble, and Asher, a former sex slave like Silver, he finds a kindred spirit and soon, finds himself falling for the beautiful, broken boy. 

Together, Ariel and Asher show Silver a whole new way of looking at the world, a transformation echoing the sleeping chrysalis of his soul, and soon his inner self emerges as the beautiful butterfly he was always meant to be. Yet as happy as he is with his new friends, Silver eventually realises he truly misses River and intends to return to his side, but a dark figure from his abusive past returns to threaten both a possible reunion and the new friends who would protect Silver. River learns of the danger, and hurries to add his own support of Silver and reaffirm their love, but is it too late for a chance at happiness together? At the emotional climax to this suspenseful story of love and loss, Silver and River reach conclusions that will either save them both or drive them apart forever.  


“It... it was the hospital. My parents have been in an accident. They... they’re dead.” 

“Oh, God. River I’m... I... don’t know what to say. It’s so terrible.” 

“Yeah. I... wasn’t close to them, at least not for the last few years. They didn’t exactly disown me when I came out to them but they didn’t take it too well either.” 

“Came out of what?” 

I smile. I can’t help it. He’s so sweet. “’Coming out’ means telling people, usually people close to you, that you’re gay.” 

“Oh.” I can see he doesn’t understand. 

“There’re a lot of people who think it’s wrong, even evil for a man to love another man.” 

“Why?” He looks really confused now. I sigh. I wish we’d never got into this conversation. It’s a wonder we’ve never had it before, but Silver’s so innocent, so accepting the whole concept of prejudice is alien to him. He’s kind of got his head round racial prejudice. Although, I don’t think he really understands the concept that one person could hurt another because of where they live or what colour their skin is. There’s no way he is going to be able to understand why they’d do it because of who we love. 

“I can't really answer that. There are some, religious people, who say that it’s banned in the Bible and is vile and an abomination to God.” 

“I’ve read the Bible. It isn’t very nice.” 

“In some places it isn’t, no.” 

“I don’t remember reading where it says that love is evil. Doesn’t it say that love is holy?” 

“Only some kinds, it seems.” 


“Silver,” I say gently, knowing what he’s like. “I’m sorry, but I don’t think I can have this conversation right now. I’ve got a lot on my mind.” 

“I’m sorry, River. I know I get carried away. You must be feeling awful.” 

“I am but... but that’s not all. My brother was in the car with them.” 

“You have a brother?” 

“Yes, he’s twelve.” 

“Is he going to die too?” 

“No. He... I don’t think he’s badly hurt but, with my parents gone, he’s alone.” 

“But he can’t be, River. He’s the same age as I was… as Matthew was. You can't let something bad happen to him like it happened to me. Can’t you bring him home to live here, with us?” 

My beautiful, beautiful boy keeps on surprising me. I was paralysed with pain and fear and Silver, ever the pragmatist, went straight to the heart of the problem and found a solution, without even trying.



Today’s question is – How did River’s parents die?

Here are the rest of the blog tour stops:

~6/8 Christ T Kat http://t.co/h6Kn4uYhRV