Hey y'all! I have a swoon worthy deleted scene from Julie Reece, Author of THE PALADINS, book 2 in THE ARTISANS seies. If y'all haven't read this yet I highly suggest you do! It's an absolute favorite of mine! Check it out & make sure to enter the giveaway!
Haven't heard of THE PALADINS? Check it out!
Author: Julie Reece
Pub. Date: May 3, 2016
Formats: Paperback, & eBook
The Artisan curse is broken. Souls trapped in a mysterious otherworld called The Void are finally released. Now, Raven Weathersby, Gideon Maddox, and Cole Wynter can finally move on with their lives...or so they thought. If the ancient magic is truly dead, then why are mystical fires plaguing Gideon at every turn? What accounts for Raven’s frightening visions of her dead mother? And who is the beautiful, tortured girl haunting Cole’s dreams?
Last year, a group of lonely teens sacrificed secrets, battled the supernatural, and faced their own demons to set one another free. Yet six months later, the heart of evil still beats within The Void. And the trio is forced to face the horrific truth: that their only way out is to go back in.
The Paladins completes this eerie YA Southern Gothic where loyalties are tested, love is challenged, and evil seeks them on the ultimate battlegrounds—in their minds, their souls, and their hearts.
Now on to the swoon worthy deleted scene!
Thank you so much for having me here today! *waves*
Having a book published is a wonderful experience. The editing process is a lot of hard work, but designed to improve the plot and pacing of a story. Sometimes an editor will ask you to remove or rewrite a scene, chapter or even several chapters to improve the flow of a novel. Plenty of original words don’t make it past edits and into the final version of a published book. Below is a scene deleted from THE PALADINS that I’d like to share with you.
I hope you enjoy it! And thanks so much for stopping by. XOXO
I may need therapy.
Raven’s been suggesting I go for months. Hell no has been my typical response, but then I kiss her breathless for caring like she does. It’s not that I am unaware of my issues. The fact that my hands curled to balls of hot iron watching Cole hug my girl earlier is proof enough, but I don’t see the point in doctors.
For counseling to work, there are two rules: first, you have to be honest; second, you have to trust your therapist. Since I can’t very well admit the magical elements of my family’s legacy, the first rule is out the window. In the Maddox book, trust is a four letter word. The idea of me laying on some old geezer’s couch talking about childhood memories just isn’t going to fly.
Still, something’s got to give. And it might be Cole’s nose when I bury my fist in his face.
For now, I’m standing at the door to Maggie’s house because I knew Raven would be here. I believe her loyalty is to me, but I can see she’s battling her conscience over helping Cole and the girl from his dream. My jealousy (something I haven’t admitted out loud) isn’t making anything easier for her. I hate myself for that.
What Cole wants is irrelevant. Rae and I are connected by a bond stronger than magic or even love. Over the last year, I’ve learned to read her. I can’t explain, but sometimes the emotions play on her face for me clearer than closed captioned TV. I won’t lose her now. Especially to the charming, French-speaking ass-wipe that made my years at boarding school a living hell.
Before I knock, Maggie’s boyfriend opens the front door and lets me in with a nod. “Maddox.”
“Dane,” I reply, before following him toward the back of the house. Raven’s voice floats into the hall from Maggie’s bedroom.
“Have you met Gideon? He’ll never agree to a secret visit with Cole.”
“How can he object if it’s secret?” Maggie argues. “And we have to know more about Cole’s visions.”
“Dude,” Dane whispers. He smirks, shakes his head, and pats my back. “Plotting women scare me.”
Nothing scares Dane, but his words are more support than he’s ever offered before.
Just outside her room, we watch Maggie lean on the door frame, rubbing her forehead. “I see what you mean. Cole’s hot, European, and …” She glances up, eyes widening as her gaze flits from Dane to me. “Oh, uh. Hi guys.”
I block Maggie as she attempts to slip past me into the hall. “Hey yourself … traitor,”
Her smile turns sheepish and she quickly addresses Dane. “Pizza night? I need to get out for a while.” My admiration for Rae’s best friend continues to grow. “We’ll be back soon.” Her gaze narrows on me. “Play fair.”
I take her place in the doorway. Not a chance. With my cane resting against the door, I make my way to the bed, focused on the girl who owns me. Surprisingly, her covert efforts to meet with Cole don’t unwrap me. I know why she thinks she needs to see him, but that doesn’t mean I won’t have some fun before letting her off the hook.
The mattress creaks with my weight. Raven’s breath stops when I run my finger along her cheek. “Anything you want to tell me?”
“I wasn’t going behind your back,” she says, tone defensive but soft. Her fingers lace when she’s flustered. A habit I find adorable … and hot, since I’m the one making her nervous.
“You do?” Raven gaze flashes up.
“Yes.” I can’t stop my smile. When she pushes my arm, I capture her hands pulling her closer.
“Do you also know how hard it is to talk to Cole while you stare holes in his head?”
I ease the dark curtain of hair from her neck and kiss the space below her ear. “Let’s not talk about Cole.”
“We have to,” she says, but the words sound a lot less determined. I smile against her skin, then nip at her earlobe, kiss her jaw, her cheek. “You can’t … oh. We can’t … kiss away the problem. Gideon?”
“Hmm.” I lose my fingers in her soft hair.
“Are you even listening?”
My teeth skim her exposed shoulder. “Every word.”
“Okay.” A long pause while my lips press along her collarbone. “We should discuss Cole’s theory. Right?”
“Absolutely. As soon as you tell me to stop.”
“What?” Instead of retreating, her hands slide up my arms to my shoulders.
“If you don’t want me to kiss you, say the word.”
She looks up at me through a fringe of heavy lash. Her lids are heavy over smoky-gray eyes. When she licks her bottom lip, the action stokes the fire already burning inside me. Beautiful. Kind. I’ve never wanted anyone the way I want her, but then, I’ve never loved anyone before. And though I know we’ll have to talk about Cole’s visit soon, the way Raven’s watching my mouth makes me think now is not that time.
“No, I’m yours. Tell me what you want, Rae.”
“Just shut up and kiss me,” she says.
My lips twist in a lopsided grin.
“Don’t get cocky, Maddox.”
“Too late for that, I think.” Though it’s my pulse that beats out of control as her hands fist in my T-shirt and she pulls me down on the bed with her.
Born in Ohio, I lived next to my grandfather’s horse farm until the fourth grade. Summers were about riding, fishing and make-believe, while winter brought sledding and ice-skating on frozen ponds. Most of life was magical, but not all.
I struggled with multiple learning disabilities, did not excel in school. I spent much of my time looking out windows and daydreaming. In the fourth grade (with the help of one very nice teacher) I fought dyslexia for my right to read, like a prince fights a dragon in order to free the princess locked in a tower, and I won.
Afterwards, I read like a fiend. I invented stories where I could be the princess… or a gifted heroine from another world who kicked bad guy butt to win the heart of a charismatic hero. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that? Later, I moved to Florida where I continued to fantasize about superpowers and monsters, fabricating stories (my mother called it lying) and sharing them with my friends.
Then I thought I’d write one down…
Hooked, I’ve been writing ever since. I write historical, contemporary, urban fantasy, adventure, and young adult romances. I love strong heroines, sweeping tales of mystery and epic adventure… which must include a really hot guy. My writing is proof you can work hard to overcome any obstacle. Don’t give up. I say, if you write, write on!
• Five (5) winners will receive a digital copy of The Paladins (The Artisans #2) by Julie Reece (INT)
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