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Shift Work by J.C. McKenzie

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  • Badass Shifter Andy McNeilly is running on empty. The death of a prominent supernatural being has her reeling. The invention of a new street drug has the police knocking on her door for assistance. And a friend needs her unique skills to help investigate a messy murder.

    In the interest of paying the bills, paying it forward, and keeping the Supernatural Regulatory Division off her back, Andy once again slips through the dark streets of Vancouver’s seedy underworld. In the process, she uncovers secrets that threaten to derail her love life and her investigation. Can Andy capture a murderer, solve a mystery, and forgive her lover’s past? Or will the grime of the criminal world swallow her whole?

    Excerpt:

    “How many stamps can a vamp tramp stamp, if a vamp tramp could stamp stamps?”

    “Yeah, like that, but better,” he replied.

    “Ungrateful bastard.”

    “Good night to you, too, sweetheart,” Ben crooned.

    This time, I didn’t announced my intentions. I hung up on his laughter.

    After a bit of cursing, I managed to peel off the leather pants with minimal skin loss, and hopped into the shower. Unfortunately, the fifteen minute reprieve did little to slow my racing brain, or wipe away the feeling of grime from the clubs.

    After the shower, I dried my hair and checked the clock. Way too late to call Donny and ask about any SRD investigations into King’s Krank. While the VPD was the acting enforcement agency for the Lower Mainland, the SRD handled all supe on supe crimes and tended to act more behind the scenes. They sent out killers, like me, to take out the culprits. They were the judge, jury, and executioner all in one.

    My head hit the pillow, and my mind easily slid into slumber.

    Instead of sinking into nothingness, I walked through a moonlit path in the middle of a forest, clothed in some long translucent nightgown probably dating back to the 1800s. Fog blanketed the ground and parted majestically as I walked. Warning bells chimed in my head instead of birds. The forest had no scent. No pine aroma laden with summer flowers. No crunching of branches or snapping of twigs as animals roamed through the dense, moss-coated floor. No rustling leaves in the wind. My bare feet padded along the rough rock and grass path without a sound and without any pinched nerves.

    An artificial forest.

    Only one person…thing…would muck around with my mind like this.

    I rounded a large evergreen, and the path opened up into a large clearing. A man stood in the middle. Naked skin glowed in the moon light.

    Sid.

    “If this is how you seduce a girl, it’s not working.”

    His lips twitched and thankfully only that. I closed the distance between us and came to a stop three feet away. No need to get too close.

    “Relax Carus, I have no wish to make you mine.”

    “Good.”

    “No more than you already are…” Sid winked.

    I clenched the cotton material in my fists and squeezed. Attacking Sid in this realm, one under his control, would not be a good idea, and wouldn’t get me the answers I sought. Smashing my fist into his kidneys would feel pretty good though.

    “Are you still pissed?” Sid wiped at his washboard abs.

    “Of course I’m still pissed.” I crossed my arms. “And why do you have me dressed like a historical damsel in distress?”

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Shift Work

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