(Angels in L.A., #1)
Out October 19th 2020
Adult, Urban Fantasy
I never asked to be an angel. Truthfully, being an angel kinda sucks.
But some angels don’t get harps. We hunt demons.
I might be a social weirdo. And okay, I black out whenever I fly and wake up naked in random places. I can only sleep in windowless rooms. I have that gun problem. Oh, and I can’t drink alcohol, since I randomly start fires.
But I, Dags Jourdain, do good. Sort of. I mean, I try.
When I’m not hunting demons, I work as a P.I. in Hollywood, California.
One night, I get in a demon fight in an alley, and accidentally save the life of a movie star, and everything changes for me.
Meanwhile, someone opened a hell portal under the Hollywood sign, a dead guy left me his dog, and a homicide detective who hates me from high school is trying to decide if I’m a serial killer.
Did I mention being an angel kinda sucks?
I, ANGEL is the first book in the Angels in L.A. series, a gritty angel urban fantasy, ideal for fans of K.F. Breene, Shayne Silvers, Patricia Briggs, C.N. Crawford, Linsey Hall
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A dog’s wet, slobbery, warm tongue ran up the side of his face.
Dogs liked him. They liked him a lot.
Depending on the day, it was either a blessing or a curse.
In this particular instance, it probably saved his life.
“Pick up the gun, asshole!” the woman yelled. “I threw it right at you!”
Dags stared dazedly at the weapon as it swam into focus.
It lay on the asphalt, not far from the brick alley wall he now vaguely remembered slamming into, some unclear amount of time ago. He even remembered the specific gun.
Looking at it, he recoiled, grimacing involuntarily. His head felt like someone had taken a machete and tried to split his skull open like a cantaloupe, but he still had no desire to pick up the damned gun, much less point it at anyone.
Was that cannon really hers? Had she been lugging that thing around in her purse all this time? Did she have a permit for that thing? And if it was hers, why did she expect him, Dags, to be the one to shoot someone with it? Why didn’t she shoot them herself?
And where did the damned dog come from?
Even as he thought it, some other subset of his mind catalogued the gun in rote:
Desert Eagle. Gas-operated, rotating bolt. Semi-automatic. Designed by Magnum Research Inc. This particular edition was a Mark VII .357 Magnum with a fourteen-inch barrel, stainless steel, accessory mount with a laser scope.
That thing could do some serious damage.
All the more reason to leave it the hell alone.
“I don’t do guns,” he slurred, shoving it away.
It skittered across the alley floor, sliding under a dumpster about ten yards away.
Pushing aside the dog’s cold, wet nose, he scratched its ears out of habit even as he fought to push himself up with his hands.
“Are you crazy?” The woman stared at Dags like he’d just slapped her. Or maybe like he’d just told her he was a unicorn who only ate chocolate-covered strawberries and farted rainbows. “You’re a pacifist? Are you kidding me right now?”
Dags could sympathize.
Not enough to want to go after the gun, but yeah, he got it.
He only made it about halfway to his knees, when a heavy, booted foot connected, hard, with the small of his back. The same part of his mind that catalogued the gun did the same to the weight, shape, and relative precision of that booted foot––even as the blow knocked him forward, nearly face-planting him into the asphalt.
Male. Roughly six feet, two inches.
Two hundred and forty pounds.
Fighting ability: expert. At least one black belt in some martial art or another. Probably some military-style training. Weaknesses: Drops right arm when he pulls back from jabs. Telegraphs kicks with grunts and/or heavy breaths. Has a weird habit of grinning right before a lunge. Conclusion: well-trained, but a bizarrely sloppy fighter. Too used to winning maybe, or maybe it had been too long since he fought someone good enough to challenge him.
But all that was just details. The real issue with this guy wasn’t his fighting ability, or lack thereof, and Dags knew it. Hell, that’s why he was here, instead of calling 911 and letting the police handle it.
The guy wasn’t human. Well, he wasn’t only human.
He was something else.
The boot came down again, too hard for a human of that weight and strength.
Dags caught himself with his hands.
He remembered how he got himself into this situation now.
Unlike Dags’ usual m.o., where he followed people for weeks, making sure he knew exactly who they were, what they were, researching them, studying their habits, getting a feel for them, the likelihood they’d hurt someone, this guy, Dags had more or less caught in the act. He’d seen him drag the woman into a dark alley, like something out of an old detective movie.
He saw the guy’s aura.
He knew there was something wrong with it.
By then, the not-human attacker had a hand over the woman’s mouth.
Dags didn’t have time to involve the police, even if he’d wanted to.
He also didn’t have time to game this one out.
To make matters worse, the woman stuck around, even after he gave her an opening. Even after Dags told her to run.
She wouldn’t leave.
Why the hell wouldn’t she leave?
The guy got the jump on him, which didn’t help. Truthfully, that really threw Dags in the beginning of the fight, but somehow it didn’t bother him as much as the woman just standing there, watching him get his ass kicked.
Anyway, the other thing was Dags’ own fault.
He had the same weakness as the guy currently kicking him in the ribs. He’d gotten too cocky, too used to fighting people who were painfully easy to beat. He’d followed the guy into the alley without the slightest attempt to scope out the scene from a safer angle.
“Get up!” the woman yelled. “What the hell is wrong with you?”
Dags looked up at her in disbelief.
Seeing her standing there, against the opposite wall, which was covered, funnily enough, in an enormous pair of spray-painted angel wings, he scowled.
He waved a hand at her towards the mouth of the alley.
“Get out of here!” he snapped.
“Get off the ground!” she shot back. “Are you stupid?”
“Why are you yelling at me?” He motioned again with a jerk of his hand. “And why are you still here? RUN! Don’t just stand there like it’s reality t.v. Get your ass out of here! NOW.”
Hands on her hips, she frowned.
Under other circumstances, he might have laughed.
She looked like she was about to ask to speak to his manager.
I write quirky, smart, conflicted, and unforgettable characters who live in realistically fantastical worlds. Many of those characters want redemption. A lot more want tacos, a margarita, and a beachy vacation with lots of sex. They all kind of hate me for never giving them enough of those things.
I write mostly in urban fantasy, paranormal romance, paranormal mystery, and supernatural suspense, and my books are chock full of love and magic, light versus dark, angsty, steamy romances, sharp dialogue, gritty worlds, and metaphysical and paranormal whatsits.
I’ve traveled a lot, lived in various funky places, but currently live and write full time in Los Angeles, California.
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