Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Dragon Dog by Sheryl Steines


Five year old Annie Pearce played in the backyard of her house.  She pumped her legs in big movements as the swing flew high in the air, her long curly hair, flying behind her.  She giggled at the swing’s highest point and let go of the chain as she jumped off, flying through the air.
            “Annie, don’t do that!” Samantha, her older sister stood across the yard, her hands on her hips a grimace on her face as Annie stuck a perfect landing.    
            “It’s fun! And no magic like dad said.” Annie stood up and ran back to the swing for one more go before people named Aunt Rivka and Uncle Jefferson came for a visit.  She couldn’t remember who they were, when dad told her they were staying the weekend. She simply shrugged her shoulders and ran out to play. This time as she swung higher in the air, she could see Zola, her Aloja fairy nanny, racing through the house cleaning and straightening, brooms and dusters moving on their own, something in the pot on the stove being stirred by a large wooden spoon.
Out of the corner of her eye she saw Samantha stomping her feet and waving her arms wildly. Annie she spotted a billdad, a magical creature with the body of a hare and a tail of an otter, digging in the flower garden near the fence.  Instead of jumping off the swing, she dragged her feet along the empty patch of dirt below her. 
            “Shoo.  Get out of here!” Samantha yelled, attempting to get the annoying thing to leave.  The billdad looked up, crinkled its face and returned to its digging.  Annie crept along behind it, not wanting the creature to see her.  She hunched over, ready to lunge.  One more step…
            “Oh there they are!” A shrill female voice said from the back porch. The woman startled Annie and she fell forward, her hand slapping at the billdad who jumped. It looked around quickly before hopping away from her and under the bushes, disappearing.  Flat on her face, Annie grunted, pulling herself into a sitting position. 
            Coming from the house was a short, thin, blonde haired woman, her tiny legs running toward Samantha. She hunched over her sister, applying wet, sloppy kisses to both cheeks. Annie scrambled to her feet and hid behind the bushes. 
            Behind the woman, stood a tall man, with a shiny balding head, a large piece of hair combed over. Annie giggled until the woman looked around.
            “Now where did that little one go?” She smiled and looked around the yard, stopping when her eyes met Annie’s. Before she could get up and run away, little fingers of Aunt Rivka reached for her pulling her up planting wet kisses all over her face.  Annie grimaced, and Dad laughed.
            “Okay Rivka, maybe we should get your things put away.” He gently pulled Annie from her arms. “Why don’t we go and see who else is staying with us this weekend. Shall we?” Annie looked up at her father, with a quizzical look on her face.
            “Woof, woof, woof, woof, woof!” A fluffy white dog ran out the door, running for the green grass of the backyard. It ran past Uncle Jefferson and Samantha running directly for Aunt Rivka who scooped up the dog that licked her face and mouth as she laughed.
            “Oh Macy!”  
            Annie followed behind as they entered the house. She reached up to pat the dog’s backside. It turned and looked at her, its tail wagging in Aunt Rivka’s arms.
            “No wagging. No wagging Macy,” said Rivka sternly. The dog liked Annie and wiggled in Rivka’s arms. Macy managed to free herself from her owner and flew to Annie, its tail wagging vigorously. Annie barely caught the dog as it landed in her arms and started to wet her face with licks. 
            “Oh, that’s so sweet! But Macy, no wagging.”
            The excited dog jumped to the ground, its tail wagging as it ran into the living room and down the hallway, into the kitchen and back to the living room, racing in a circle throughout the downstairs. 
            “Macy, come here.” Aunt Rivka bent to catch the dog that finally stopped and again, wagged its tail. The loudest fart Annie had ever heard came from the dog’s backside, along with a small fire ball. The fire ball caught hold of the rug beneath it.
            “Macy no!” yelled Aunt Rivka as she grabbed the dog. Dad ran to the fire in the center of the room, conjuring a large bucket of water and dousing the small flame before it consumed the rug.
            “Uh, Rivka, why didn’t you tell us about the dog’s er, unusual problem?”
            “Oh, it’s not a problem Jason. It’s a dragon dog. See.” She turned the dog’s tail toward dad. “It’ll be okay as long as we don’t feed her cheese, or vegetables, or eggs. Oh I guess we can’t feed her fish, bacon, chocolate, wine, milk, carrots, broccoli and definitely no beans. And if she wags her tail, well, that just stirs it all up. Otherwise, it’s okay.”  Her smile was weak as she pulled Macy closer to her.
            Dad frowned as he ushered Annie and Samantha into the den and turned on the television while he went to help Zola with lunch. 
***
After an eventful afternoon with the dragon dog setting fire to the living room rug, Annie awoke the next morning to the smell of pancakes and bacon cooking in the kitchen. But it didn’t smell like Zola did it right this morning.  She pushed on Samantha who was sleeping in her room, to wake her up. 
“What…” she said as she rubbed her eyes. 
“Something smells funny.” Annie crinkled her nose and grimaced.
“Go back to sleep.” Samantha rolled to her side and pulled the covers over her head. 
Annie jumped out of bed and wondered if the dog had set fire to something else as she made her way down the stairs. In the kitchen she was surprised to see Aunt Rivka at the stove.
“But Ms. Rivka, it’s my job to make the breakfast, please, have some coffee and read the paper.” Zola moaned. 
“Nonsense Zola. I’m perfectly capable of helping my nephew. Go and take a break.” She shoed Zola away, and as an obedient fairy, she bowed her head respectfully, looked at Annie and shook her head.
Rivka smiled and returned to the pancakes as they burned on the skillet. She flipped the burnt food and watched as the second side also burned. Annie looked at Zola, her lips contorted in a disgusted pout wishing Zola had been making breakfast instead.   
            “Annie child. Go sit at the table. There’s food ready.” Aunt Rivka said. She looked at Zola before walking to the table, her head down, her face sullen. She pulled out her favorite chair and sat down next to Uncle Jefferson. 
            “Ah Annie. Good morning.” He said as he poured her a large glass of juice. He knocked his fingers into the glass, spilling the contents in Annie’s lap. She sighed.
            “Oh dear.” He jumped up, his morning paper landing in her soaking wet lap, sopping up the liquid and turning her nightgown into an inky, pulpy mess. “So sorry.” He said as he ran a palm over her lap, clearing up the mess. When he was done, she had a large ink stain across her nightgown. 
            “I’ll clean it later Miss Annie,” Zola said, her lips attempting to curl into a smile. 
            “Here.” Uncle Jefferson piled several burnt pancakes onto her plate. Annie grimaced and reached for the syrup, pouring nearly half the sugary liquid on the pancakes.
            “Oh, those are too dark. Try these.” Aunt Rivka handed her another plate, the pancakes as dark as the others. “See much better.” Rivka smiled and returned to her mess on the stove. Uncle Jefferson began reading a book as Annie began to scrape burnt bits from the pancakes on her plate. 
            As she picked off the burnt bits and ate what little fluffy stuff was left, Macy sat on the floor beside her wagging her tail. When Annie couldn’t eat any more of her breakfast, she fed the inedible food to the dog. Macy wolfed it down before anyone knew.  When finished, the dog bounced away and headed out of the kitchen, a large fart following, and a large fire ball trailing from the dog’s backside. It landed on the wooden table, overtaking the leg.
            “Oh no!” yelled Annie as she jumped back off of her chair and away from the fire. The fire alarm in the kitchen blared loudly, a pulse going off every few seconds. Aunt Rivka turned her attention to the table missing the pancake in the skillet sparking and burning, glowing with a low fire. Uncle Jefferson dropped his book on the floor and looked around, noticing the table was on fire. Dad ran in, his pajamas hanging from his lean frame, as he pulled Annie out of the kitchen and conjured a bucket of water, dousing the table. Samantha stood at the entrance of the kitchen, her eyes wide, her mouth agape as Uncle Jefferson ran to the stove, throwing the burning pan in the sink and running water over it. Dad conjured more water, and drenched the table, a plate of burnt pancakes soaking in the water, turning to wet goo. Smoke from the fire darkened the ceiling, and steam from water clouded the windows, the kitchen growing darker. 
            “Uh, sorry there, Jason.” Uncle Jefferson couldn’t look him in the face as his hand rested on dad’s shoulder. 
            “It’s…” dad looked around the room. The charred stove covered in pancake batter, the windows steamed and wet, the smell of fire permeating his nose. “Zola,” he said softly, knowing she would have it fixed instantly. She nodded as she stood from the table and sighed. Her wand out, she slowly cleared the mess at the stove and dried the windows as Dad repaired the table and cleared the pancake goo that was floating on the plate.
            Macy bounced in the room, her tail wagging excitedly, a fart, louder than the rest reverberated against the walls and floor. 
            “Macy, NO!”


He comes through the centuries to find her, the girl who could save them all. Alone in the future and a foreign land, he must trust the coven’s magic to find the girl in the prophecy, the one who will rid his people of the demons which cannot be killed

Annie Pearce runs through the streets of the city, chasing a demon, the likes she has never seen before. After finally capturing the creature, she works to find out where it comes from and how to destroy the monster. Cham Chamsky follows a lead and discovers a mystery man in the forest near where the demon was found. This is no ordinary man. He is a Viking—a man from the past—thirteen centuries in the past.

Annie and Cham don’t believe in coincidence, and know the demon and Viking are somehow related. With the demon imprisoned and the Viking on the loose, it is essential they learn the origins of the strange pair in order to protect the non-magical world from their presence. In a startling twist of fate, the Viking Kolgaar drags Annie through a portal to the past, and she learns of the prophecy that has foretold her destiny, one she didn’t know she had.

She must rid ancient England of the regenerating demons—especially Gergalina, the largest and meanest of all the horrible creatures. The monsters have terrorized the Vikings and the coven, destroying everything in their path. When the prophecy was read, there was hope for the first time in centuries. Annie struggles with her new destiny as she adjusts to life in the past, and tries to figure out a way to destroy the un-killable demons with the help of her faithful partner Spencer. It is a purpose she must fulfill if she is ever to return home.

She Wulf is the follow-up to The Day of First Sun, the first novel by Sheryl Steines. Continue the adventure of Annie and Cham as they set out to save the world one more time.
Steines' writing is as magical as all the characters in the book put together. Her prowess is a super-magic being that transcends all others.
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About the Author

Sheryl Steines is equal parts driven, passionate and inspired. With a degree in English from Wright State University, Steines dedicates time everyday to her art. Her love of books and a quality story drives her to share her talent with her readers as well as make the time to talk to book clubs and students about her process.

Sheryl has eclectic tastes and enjoys character driven novels. In her own writing, the Annie Loves Cham series is driven by her love of the characters and her desire to place them in totally new situations. She enjoys testing their mettle.

Behind the wheel of her ’66 Mustang Convertible, Sheryl is a constant surprise. Her sense of humor and relatable style make her books something everyone can enjoy.

Sheryl can be found on Twitter, Facebook, or her blog. She also encourages her readers to email her and let her know what you think of Annie and Cham!

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1 comment:

  1. love it lots of repeating but i did it lots of new books/authors to check out thank you

    ReplyDelete