Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Tour ~ Haunting Obsession by RJ Sullivan

Welcome to my stop on the Haunting Obsession Tour. Brought to you by Seventh Star Press! 
We have RJ Sullivan's new novella, some amazing illustrations from the book along with a short piece that has never been published! How lucky are we?!?!?!?

Haunting Obsession Synopsis
“She wants to be loved by you…alone!”
Daryl Beasley collects all things Maxine Marie, whose famous curves and fast lifestyle made her a Hollywood icon for decades after her tragic death. Daryl’s girlfriend, Loretta Stevens, knew about his geeky lifestyle when they started dating, but she loves him, quirks and all.
Then one day Daryl chooses to buy a particularly tacky piece of memorabilia instead of Loretta’s birthday present. Daryl ends up in the doghouse, not only with Loretta, but with Maxine Marie herself. The legendary blonde returns from the dead to give Daryl a piece of her mind—and a haunting obsession he’ll never forget.

R. J. Sullivan resides with his family in Heartland Crossing, Indiana. His first novel, Haunting Blue, is an edgy paranormal thriller about punk girl loner Fiona "Blue" Shaefer and her boyfriend Chip Farren. R.J. is hard at work on the next chapter in Fiona's story, Virtual Blue, coming soon from Seventh Star Press.  R.J. is a member of the Indiana Horror Writers.
Website: http://www.rjsullivanfiction.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/R.J.SullivanAuthor
Twitter: @RJSullivanAuthr

And now, here is the original piece written especially for this post!

The Day After

            Special Investigations Unit agent Rebecca Burton stepped into the dimness of the CafĂ© Expresso in Broad Ripple, Indiana. She ignored the groupings of college students clustered at the tables and booths of the main social area and made a beeline for the corner table.
            The aroma of coffee, normally so overwhelming and stimulating to her senses, did nothing to shake the melancholy that hung over her like a cloud.  She hoped a more direct dose of caffeine would help.
            Rebecca seated herself, removed her fedora, and shook her hair free. She saw Stella, the bubbly waitress, taking a note. "Hi, 'Becca. Espresso Double, darling?"
            Rebecca nodded.
            With a wink, the waitress wandered off.
            A voice spoke to her from across the table. "There's a magic charm for that sort of fatigue that works a lot better than coffee."
            Taken aback, the sight of the robed and hooded figure standing on the other side of the table caused a new flare of annoyance. People didn't sneak up on Rebecca. At least, not normal people.
            "For the love of God, Sparkle, you look ridiculous."
            "I look ridiculous? Sam Spade would be embarrassed to see you."
            "Fair enough. What do you want?"
            "You're asking me?" Sparkle pulled the hood back to expose a chubby pale face and a smile offset by crooked teeth. She extended a piece of paper that drifted over the table and landed in front of Rebecca.
            Rebecca recognized the letterhead as coming from her own office of the Special Investigations Unit.
            Sparkle said, "I heard my master's voice, and I came running."
            Rebecca released a sigh. "The letter specifies I'd meet you in New York and contact you at your office at a time of your convenience."
            "Oh, but, no time like the present. And besides, it's the perfect opportunity to congratulate you on your victory."
            Oh-oh. Rebecca drew a deep, calming breath. "I don't know what you mean."
            Sparkle took the empty seat opposite Rebecca. "Why, yes, I will join you, thanks."
            Rebecca caught herself grinding her teeth and stopped. "Why the games, Sparkle? Why the drama? We're supposed to remain secret."
            Sparkled held her palms up, exposing two hands, all ten digits ring-laden with gaudy gems. "I can't be any more secret, darling. Believe me, I'm so obviously a sorceress that the public knows I must be a fraud."
            "Give me a break, Sparkle. You have your share of clients. Not that I can prove it, the way they keep disappearing."
            The robes shifted as Sparkle's shoulders rose and fell. "It's true, I had to rearrange quite a few appointments to meet you. But I'm not going to apologize for being a successful free agent."
            "You offer dangerous, forbidden spells for a profit, Sparkle. And you have no concern for what happens to these so-called clients of yours." Rebecca reached out and placed a hand on Rebecca's forearm.
            "Don't you touch me!" Sparkle pulled her arm back, glaring. "That's your answer to everything isn't it? Touch me, touch my mind. Learn that I wasn't loved by Daddy as a child, and make that hurt go away. Then I discover I can use my powers for good, and swear off my mercenary life." Sparkle scoffed. "No, Rebecca. I like myself, just the way I am. Which is more than I can say for you."
            "We are commanded to use our powers for the greater good."
            "Please. Don't give me that comic book crap. What has the greater good ever done for me? Besides I do help people."
            "Really? You mean like Jared Price? Is that the sort of people you've helped?"
            Sparkle shrugged. "Jared Price? Who's he?"
            "You know who he is. The Fiddle Dee-Dee groupie."
            "Oh, yes, Fiddle Dee-Dee. The pop singer, right? The one who---" Sparkle extended a ring-covered index finger, pointed it to her own temple, made a sharp noise, and tipped her head to the side. "That one?"
            Rebecca nodded. "I spoke to Jared before he spoke to you."
            "So...she's still dead."
            "Don't be daft. Of course she's still dead. If Jared succeeded, he'd create a new dimension in an alternate timeline and we'd never know about it. They could be sipping mixed drinks on the beach as husband and wife in another dimension, for all we know." Sparkle chuckled. "Though I doubt it. What a loser."
            Rebecca reached into her jacket and produced an envelope. "Did you know he mailed me a letter, pleading that I help him if he fails? Which tells me that you didn't explain that once he drank that potion, he'd cut himself off from the reality he knew before you sent him on his way. And you sit here and mock him, just like I'm sure you mock all your clients."
            Sparkle rolled her eyes. "Like he would have changed his mind. All he wanted to do was undo what happened. And who knows, maybe he did."
            "And only one of us cares."
            "At least I did something. Which is more than I can say for you."
            Rebecca drew a breath, trying to calm her anger. "I make a difference, in my own way, but if you keep playing interference, I can't---"
            "---Oh, yeah, that big difference you made with Daryl and Loretta yesterday? Is that what you mean?"
            Rebecca stopped. "How did you---"
            "---Please. You have your spies, I have mine. Let's leave it at that for now. But tell me of this great victory against the forces of evil.  Tell me how this mischievous Ghost of Hollywood Past destroyed the lives of two people---"
            "---It wasn't like that."
            "---and you just sat back and watched it happen."
            "I did not!"
            "Please, Rebecca, you and I both know you were aware the moment Maxine was summoned. And with a snap of your fingers you could have sent the undead skank packing her bags before she ever spoke to Daryl. Instead you let events play out. Even when Loretta begged you for help, you went in half-ass power."
            Sparkle leaned close, sneering. "And there was Loretta, thanking you oh, so very much for what you did. I doubt she'd have been so grateful if she knew you could have exorcised Maxine the second she appeared. That is, if you weren't such a coward."
            Rebecca felt herself go hot. In her anger, Rebecca saw herself from the fat druid's perception, she saw her own eyes glaring, glowing red, a shimmering silhouette of giant wings becoming visible behind the leather jacket. "I would be very... careful... right now...Sparkle, or you'll learn firsthand how much I am not afraid to use my powers to vanquish evil."
            In that moment, all color drained from Sparkle's face.          
            Horrified at her own outburst, Rebecca shuddered. Oh my God! I've lost control! She clamped down, drawing her power back.
            In the silence that hung between them, the color slowly returned to Sparkle's face while Rebecca's breathing slowed.
            The waitress walked up to the table, left a paper cup at Rebecca's elbow, and retreated.
            Sparkle recovered first and cackled. "Very good, Rebecca. Very good. Welcome to the party at last. Look, I don't want to be unreasonable.  In a show of good faith, I will keep you informed of any cases the Special Investigations Unit needs to be aware of."
            "In a show of good faith, you'll inform me of all your cases going forward."
            Sparkle bristled. "Fine."
            Rebecca grabbed her cup of coffee and took a sip. "Then we have nothing further to discuss. You may leave now and go back to wreaking havoc."           
            "Don't be so fast to dismiss me. As a further show of good faith, I'll offer you this free tip. You need to get over to Bloomington."
            Rebecca nodded. "The Sisterhood of Baalina. I’m already on it."
            Now it was Sparkle's turn to look shocked.
            Rebecca smiled. "As you said, you have your spies, and we have ours. Still...you have some suggestions?"
            "I do. Are you willing to keep an open mind and listen?"
            Rebecca raised a hand to the waitress. "Stella, get my good friend anything she wants, on me."

The story of Daryl, Maxine, and Loretta is told in Haunting Obsession.

The story of Jared, Sparkle and Fiddle Dee-Dee is told in Backstage Pass, a Seventh Star Single now available.

The story of the Sisterhood of Baalina will be told in Virtual Blue, coming to Seventh Star Press in 2013.


1 comment:

  1. I love the cover for Haunting Obseesion. The book sound quite interesting, like a fabulous made for tv movie. I truly enjoy paranormal stories and I'll bet this is a great literary gem.


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