GtPGKogPYT4p61R1biicqBXsUzo" /> Google+ Alpha Male Diner: Nancy Northcott is cooking up Roland Wade (Mage Cop) | I Smell Sheep

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Alpha Male Diner: Nancy Northcott is cooking up Roland Wade (Mage Cop)

Roland Wade (Mage Cop)
recipe by Nancy Northcott
“Magic & Mistletoe,” a Light Mage Wars short story

To start, combine:
One muscular, six-foot, male frame
Blond hair
Brown Eyes
A generous heart

Season with:
A strong protective instinct
Fast reflexes
Training as a mage cop, or deputy shire reeve, including mastery of the broadsword
Courage, kindness, and determination to do what’s right.

Fold in:
A badass reputation
An unrequited desire for a mage teacher

Mix thoroughly.

Heat to blazing as his actions in combat against the dark-magic users known as ghouls win him a chance with the woman he wants.

Garnish with humor and hope

Serve with a side of holiday punch.

Taste Test: 
Chapter 1
A smart man would move on.
Roland Wade knew this, and his inability to do so chapped his shorts.

“So did you ask her?” Broderick “Brody” 

Hamilton kept his deep voice low. Considerate of him, though the small outboard motor’s noise would likely keep his question from carrying to the boat behind them. Gliding over the Okefenokee Swamp’s black water, the boat following theirs held the strawberry blonde he referred to and four seventh graders.

“Last week.” Roland grimaced to close the subject.

The water perfectly reflected the silvery trunks of cypress trees, with their few remaining needles a rusty brown, and a sunset that blazed like his hopes going down in flames. 

He’d invited teacher Periwinkle Lee to next week’s Winter Solstice Ball at the Collegium, the southeastern mages’ secret headquarters.

He should’ve known better.

She was like a fairy princess, petite, pretty, and wicked smart. He, unfortunately, looked more like an ogre, thanks to his linebacker’s hulking build and a nose broken from too much football. And school hadn’t been his thing.

“Faint heart ne’er won fair lady,” Brody teased as he brought the boat into its slip by the one-story, gray-plank ranger station.

And princesses didn’t date ogres. Peri’s refusal had been polite but firm. Roland shrugged.

Fine for Brody to talk. The guy was a walking babe magnet. With dark hair worn as long as regs allowed and looks women seemed to like, he would’ve made a great candidate for the storybook prince role.

The other four boats carrying students and mage volunteer guides docked. The last boat carried two of Roland and Brody’s fellow mage cops, known as deputy reeves. 

Because Mundane, or normal, humans couldn't know about mages--or their Collegium with its government center, academy, and law enforcement facilities, all masquerading as the Georgia Institute for Paranormal Research--the deputies wore ordinary clothes. Each also wore a sword, magically screening it from sight. The ghouls, dark magic users who kidnapped mages and Mundanes for breeding, were active around the swamp, so mage students took no field trips unguarded.

Roland climbed out, and someone's elbow in his back--thank you, Brody, you well-meaning asshole--propelled him toward Peri’s boat. Startled, she looked up.

“Uh, hi.” He offered her a hand.

The students scrambled out, but Peri, to his great surprise, hesitantly closed her fingers around his before stepping onto the dock. His pulse kicked. Although he released her instantly, the feel of her smooth skin and surprisingly callused palm lingered on his fingers as her violet scent teased his nose.

“Thanks,” she said. 

They stood in awkward silence, not quite looking at each other. Then Peri's head snapped up. She rushed to stop a pair of boys roughhousing farther up the dock. 

Roland scowled at the Spanish moss-festooned live oaks by the water. This field trip wasn’t nearly over, except for the volunteer guides, who were heading home. An hour on the bus would take the rest of the group to dinner in the little town of Wayfarer, which would be decked out for Christmas and the solstice, and then came an hour-plus ride back to the Collegium. 
Too bad he’d drawn bus duty. The trailing SUV would’ve been a Peri-free zone.


Refusing Roland was the smart move. Peri knew that. Yet her eyes kept straying to the big man with the blond buzz cut who sat behind the stocky, middle-aged driver, Bitsy Green. 

In the darkness, the dash lights silhouetted Roland’s broad-shouldered frame. 

His fellow deputy, dark-haired GiGi Gonzales, leaned across the aisle toward Peri. Under cover of the chattering students, GiGi said, 
“He’s a good guy.”

She must’ve noticed Peri staring. Peri's cheeks heated. “He seems very competent.” 

“He’s a sweetie, too.” 

“I’ve heard.” But he was also big, taciturn, and stealthy, like the toughs who'd lurked in the slums of her Chicago childhood. He made her nervous. No predator could pass the deputy reeve screening, of course, but Roland had evoked bad memories ever since they’d met in the dining hall a couple of weeks ago.

Even if he did have a voice as deep and smooth as liquid nighttime. And brown eyes that often gleamed with humor.

Peri shrugged, and GiGi sat back. 

The road ran through part of the swamp, past campgrounds deserted for the winter holidays. 

In the dark, the trees blurred into one big shadow.

A flare of muddy yellow light slammed into the front of the bus, stopping it cold. 

Thrown against the seat in front of her, Peri gasped for breath. 

Roland and GiGi both shouted, “Ghouls! Down!”

Magic & Mistletoe (A Light Mage Wars short story)
by Nancy Northcott
Growing up in a dangerous slum, Peri Lee hated the daily fear that her loved ones would die just trying to make it home from work. Her current job teaching mage children gives her the quiet, predictable life she craves. Too bad the guy who pushes her go buttons, Roland Wade, has a linebacker’s build, a broken nose, and a badass attitude, much like the thugs who haunted her childhood home.

As a deputy shire reeve, Roland is one of the good guys, but he’s far better at taking out ghouls than talking books. Smart, petite Peri, he figures, is way out of his league. Especially since his job puts him in the line of fire daily and makes him exactly the kind of guy Peri doesn’t need. Yet she has a spark he can’t resist.

Will their differences doom any chance for a real relationship, or will they find their own kind of magic under the mistletoe?

About the Author:
Nancy Northcott’s childhood ambition was to grow up and become Wonder Woman. Around fourth grade, she realized it was too late to acquire Amazon genes, but she still loved comic books, science fiction, fantasy, history, and romance. A sucker for fast action and wrenching emotion, Nancy combines the magic, romance and high stakes she loves in the books she writes.

She’s the author of the Light Mage Wars/Protectors paranormal romances, the Arachnid Files romantic suspense series, and the forthcoming historical fantasy trilogy, The Boar King’s Honor.

Married since 1987, she considers herself lucky to have found a man who not only enjoys a good adventure story but doesn’t mind carrying home a suitcase full of research books. Nancy and her husband have one son, a bossy dog, and a house full of books.

1 comment:

  1. Ooo that looks fun! I'd not seen the series before but *pets the pretty* lol