Come, Come Back, Coming For you
Series: Dirty, Dark, & Deadly Genres: Adult, Adult Suspense, Contemporary, Erotic Romance, Romance, Romantic Suspense
My name is James Fenici and you will never see me coming. I walk the shadows like darkness itself. I hide in the corners where nobody looks. I live by no rules, I have no boundaries, I take no prisoners, and I never, ever blink. I am not your knight in shining armor; I'm your worst nightmare.
My name is James Fenici and you are my target. Only one of us is getting out alive, and that's not gonna be you. Once your name is on my list, your life is over. It's a deal I make with death, it's a contract I sign in blood, it's forgone conclusion--get used to it.
My name is James Fenici and I'm as dirty as they come. But then one day I saw her. And every monster I thought I was. Every fact I thought I knew. Every dirty promise I ever turned down came back to slap me in the face.
My name is James Fenici and I think I am in love.
DIRTY, DARK, & DEADLY
(Trilogy - Romantic Suspense)
This series started out as a novella for The BEND Anthology with the seven other Erotica Consortium writers. If you’ve been reading me for a while, you know what happened. If you’re new, the book was banned by Amazon for violating “content guidelines”. Whatever that means.
But regardless, my little contribution to that book was a very convoluted story that set up two new characters—James and Harper. Both James and Harper have secrets and in this first book you learn none of them. This probably drove some people to hate the story and stop reading, but that’s OK. I planned it that way. Because this was a series about assassins, shadow governments, and none of these people were “the good guys”. If the line between right and wrong was a bit blurred in Rook & Ronin, then this book has a clear line right down the middle and all of the characters in DDD are bad.
There’s just no way around it.
So I wanted to set the book up in Come with James and Harper meeting, so that in the second book I could bring someone back from the past.
I squint at the feral girl sitting on top of a rolling ridge across the prairie and revise.
Which is even worse.
I grab my binoculars and focus on her face. She’s scowling at me, her dark blonde hair littered with leaves and twigs. I pan down to her outfit. She’s a poster child for a surplus store. She looks like she’s been living out here on the scrub for weeks instead of days.
And that is not a good sign.
I press the button and the window on my side of the truck lowers. I give her a few seconds to say something. Yell or stand. Something. But she just sits there, staring at me. Her long ratty hair is blowing in the wind and her face is streaked with dirt. There’s a little bit of smoke rising from the ridge behind her.
I whistle out a shrill call and yell, “Let’s fucking go!”
The wind blows my words away and she sits still, so I figure she didn’t hear me. But then—movement. She raises her hand like she’s gonna wave. I even have a split second of relief.
She flips me off, stands up, swats the dirt from her ass, and then turns and walks down the ridge. Out of sight.
This is a standalone series however it’s set in the same world as Rook & Ronin and characters are intertwined. And while there were certain changes for both of the books following Come (Come Back and Coming For You), I knew the ending before I started. I always know the ending before I start.
I’ll even go one step further for Dirty, Dark, and Deadly—I set this whole series up in Ford’s book, Slack. In fact, most of the first half of the book is set up for DDD. And I remember people reading Slack and kinda going, WTF? That really wasn’t necessary.
My phone rings and I glance over at the screen. “Fuck.” I pick it up and swipe my fingers. “What’s up?”
“I need a small, you available?”
He sounds paranoid and this means I can mess with his head, so I take a loud slurping sip of coffee and swallow. “I have a date tonight. Will we be finished by ten?”
“Shut the fuck up and come get me, you freak. I’m at DIA, west terminal, parking garage level two, behind a blue station wagon, near the south elevators. Do the call and I’ll come out when you get here.”
“Merc, I swear, if you complicate my life today, I’ll be—” I get the three quick beeps on my phone that tells me the line went dead. I hope he hung up on me and didn’t get caught in whatever scheme he’s involved in this time.
Every word I write leads to something. And every word I wrote in Slack led to either Taut or Dirty, Dark, and Deadly. I didn’t have a name for the series—it was just a future project. And in fact, I really thought Merc would be the star of that particular plot line. But then Guns came along and a new character appeared… and the rest is history.
But Merc has been brewing since September 2013. That’s when I first made him up for Taut. And his story ‘should’ be out March 30th if everything goes well.
The other major character in DDD is Sasha. She was a Little House reading twelve year old when Ford met her in Slack. But in Come Back, she’s a very angry and secretive thirteen year old. Jaded far beyond her years, for good reason. And not everyone liked her.
But she was set up that way too. In fact, Slack had an epilogue of the scene where Ford goes to see her, but it got cut. Too much, too soon. It was just a little glimpse into DDD, and that was months and months away. But that scene, rewritten to fit the plot better, did finally show up in Coming For You, the third and final DDD book.
There were two moments when I was writing Coming For You when I had a serious Spencer Shrike Blackbird moment. Fate brought back two details I planted the year before and I could hardly believe that was staring me in the face the entire time.
I’m not going to tell you these two fate moments because they are both spoilers, but all the hard work I put into that series suddenly became worth it. I was so fucking tired after releasing Social Media that I had very little energy left for Coming For You. So these two plot points really gave me the confidence to finish on time and put it out there.
But the one scene at the end that everyone remembers and mentions in reviews, is not the one that came through fate. It was planned from the beginning and the only way it could’ve happened is if every word I wrote about Rook, Ronin, Ashleigh, Ford, Spencer and Ronnie, Sasha, and even Merc came before it.
I built something with these books. And that’s my takeaway for any new or aspiring authors out there who are looking for some trick to help them. Just build a world. Fill it with characters you’d want to hang out with. Give them problems to solve, make them smart and not too good. And help them overcome.
Because being a successful author is like a Field of Dreams.
If you build it, they will Come.
Here’s the EOBS-T2 schedule for this week – Each post has a new 321 giveaway attached. So you have five separate chances to win a signed paperback this week if you enter them all.
Sunday – How the EOBS Started
Monday – Rook & Ronin (Tragic, Manic, Panic)
Tuesday – Ford & Ashleigh (Slack and Taut)
Wednesday – Spencer & Veronica (Bomb and Guns)
Thursday – James & Harper (Come, Come Back, Coming For You)
Friday – Vaughn and Grace (Follow, Like, Block, Status, Profile, Home)
So check back every day this week for End of Book Shit Take 2 and if you’re so inclined, leave me a comment and tell me how you feel about Dirty, dark, and Deadly!