CJ Bahr visits today with a look at her favorite scene in REDEEMED BY FIRE. Take it away, CJ!
One of my favorite scenes between Detective Lucas Avery and Cassanne Thomas is the lead up to their first kiss in Redeemed By Fire. Luc brought Casi home with him to keep her out of the hands of a supernatural serial killer stalking her. After having dinner with his family, they’ve gone on a moonlight walk. It’s a fun scene because he got Casi spooked from introducing her to the bayou:
“Fee fo lay?” Casi whispered back.
Still wrapped in his arm, he stood so close his breath heated her ear as the liquid cadence of his accent enveloped her.
“A swamp fairy. In Cajun folklore, the fifolet are magic beings appearing as a bright light.” He leaned in closer. “They misdirect and disorient any who try to follow.”
The mesmerizing light continued to dance in the distance. She could well understand being led astray when lost in the dark bayou. The light would be a means to salvation.
“Like a wil-o’-wisp?”
“Non, cher,” his voice dropped lower and softer. “Those are European. Our bayou faeries are much more dangerous. Evil.”
The loud screech beside her made Casi leap at Luc. She wrapped herself around him as his arms embraced her, holding her tight. The horrible sound didn’t repeat, but something brushed against her bare legs. Yelping, she grabbed his shoulders, jumped up, and wrapped her legs around Luc’s hips, locking her ankles to keep from falling to the ground.
Her heart raced. Luc should be running. Or shouting. She leaned back, wildly looking around, seeing nothing, not even the swamp fairy. Suddenly, she realized Luc was laughing as he held her with one arm braced under her bottom and the other wrapped around her shoulders.
“Are you laughing at me?”
He choked back a snicker. “More of a city girl, cher?”
“You are laughing at me.”
“Maybe a little.” His charming smile came out to play. He broke his gaze, looking past her. “Catastrophe, go on now. You’re cruel, taking advantage of our city, fille.”
Her eyes widen, and she looked over her shoulder and down. Sure enough, Cat sat beside them, regally upright, her bushy tail curled around her. And if a feline could smirk, Casi swore Cat did.
“Shoo, you troublemaker,” Luc ordered. “You know you’re not allowed outside. You’ll get yourself eaten.”
Cat yawned and stretched. She gave one last aloof feline stare before she trotted away, crossing the lawn toward the house.
“Sorry I laughed. But you should have seen your expression.”
She tore her gaze away from the retreating feline menace and locked gazes with Luc. “You had me all spooked out with your evil fairy and creepy swamp. What did you expect? Plus, there’s nothing wrong with being a city girl.”
First published in Marion Zimmer Bradley's "Sword & Sorceress" anthology, C J was bitten by the writer's bug and hasn't stopped since. The Wild Rose Press published her award-winning first novel, "Walking Through Fire"— a Scottish ghost romance. She is currently working on the fourth book in the interconnected standalone series, The Fire Chronicles, as well as a new Urban Fantasy starring a kick-ass Time Enforcer.
When her pen isn't scribing, you can find her busily cutting and tracking music for film and television. With over thirty years of music editing experience, her credits range from "Northern Exposure" and "The Muppets Christmas Carol", to "The Kill Point", "The Following", and ABC’s hit comedy, "The Middle".
In her downtime, you’ll find her curled up with a cup of tea, her cats and a great book in Tarzana, California.
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Twitter: @cjbahr https://twitter.com/cjbahr
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Blurb, REDEEMED BY FIRE:
New Orleans, hot sultry nights, and an ancient evil who makes the French Quarter home.
Cassanne Thomas returns to New Orleans to start her life over and becomes the target of a supernatural serial killer. Escaping her close call with death, Casi is the only witness to the crime and finds herself placed in protected custody by a handsome Cajun detective. But with her dark, troubled past, trusting the police is the last thing she wants to do.
Detective Lucas Avery, the top homicide detective in NOLA, is unaware of the supernatural world surrounding him. With the killer stalking the streets, he vows to shield the beautiful, enigmatic, Casi with his life while fighting his growing attraction to her. He's been burned before.
Danger chases Lucas and Casi from the streets of the French Quarter to the wilds of the bayou. Will they be able to stop a monster, straight out of a nightmare or become victims themselves?
Casi screamed and covered her ears, though too late. The loud boom made her ears ring. Who was shooting at them? She tried to see, but Luc’s weight had her effectively pinned. Squealing tires along with a string of Cajun curses from Luc, had Casi guessing the shooter had fled.
Luc holstered his weapon when Casi spotted the blood dripping off his arm.
“Oh my God!” She pushed at him. “Let me up. You’re hurt. You’re bleeding!”
Luc rolled off her and did as she asked, while gripping his thigh with both hands. Her gaze left his arm drawn to the blood oozing out between his fingers. The thigh wound appeared much more serious. She tugged her phone out and quickly dialed 911. But before it connected, Luc’s bloody fingers grabbed her phone and disconnected the call.
“We can’t call this in.” Luc exhaled harshly and gritted his teeth as once again, he applied pressure to his leg.
“You’re shot. You’re bleeding from multiple places. We need an ambulance!”
He shook his head. “Can’t. We need to leave. Now.”