If this is your first FURY UNLEASHED post, please read prior FURY UNLEASHED posts first, from earliest to latest. Thanks.
Mr. Zebadiah Proffitt. What can I tell you about Zebadiah, owner and operator of Kings Kennels? Wait. His last name is Profitt, right? So, if he’s owner and operator why does he call his business Kings Kennels? Well, because he thinks of himself as a king, that’s why.
But maybe it would better to ask his wife, Sarah, what she thinks about him. Yeah, what does she think about her wonderful husband? Well, she called him a monster. To his face. Does that give you a clue?
I’ll tell ya what, though, how in the world she managed to do it, is beyond me. She’s lived in terror for so long I can’t even fathom how that inexplicable droplet of courage made its way up from the depths of her soul, through the shattered rubble of her heart, all the way to the top of her throat, and out of her mouth. Oh, but she paid for that fleeting moment of bravery born of years cowering in endless, agonizing terror.
How, you ask? I’ll just let Zeb tell you himself. This was his reply: “Ha! I’m more than a monster. I’m the alpha of all monsters! Stronger and more powerful than any and all that inhabit this earth.” Yeah, he definitly thinks a lot of himself. And all the while, his gleefully evil eyes bore into hers and his hand clenched tightly around her throat. Did it matter that his young son witnessed this abuse of his mother, standing by frozen in mind-shattering, helpless, hopeless terror? Why, of course not. After all, the boy needed to learn how to be a man, didn’t he?
Yeah, that’s our Zebadiah. He doesn’t just raise dogs. He works them. Hard. To build up their muscles. He starves them to keep them ravenous and aggressive. He tortures them to make them vengeful. Then, when they’re good and ready, he puts them in the pit to tear his rivals’ animals to shreds, bit by bit.
A draw isn’t good enough. A win by show of greater strength isn’t good enough. His dog standing, head raised and proud, with chunks of flesh hanging from steel jaws and blood dripping from file-sharpened, razor-edged fangs while a mangled body lies forever still in a growing pool of blood at its feet. Now that’s what he calls a win!
What happens when Jo meets our evil villain with the soul of a demon? What happens when he meets her? Will an epic battle ensue? Or will subtlety and ingenuity rule the day? Do you know enough about our heroine to make that guess?
Next up, Tommy Proffit. That’s right, Zebadiah’s young son. All grown up.
If this is your first FURY UNLEASHED post, please read the previous FURY UNLEASHED posts first from earliest to latest. Thanks.
Meet Jake McDermott
Ah, Jake. Steel gray eyes. Dark chocolate, wavy, hair that’s a wee bit too long for an officer of the law. But, hey, he’s a small-town sheriff, so it’s no biggie. Former Navy Seal. He doesn’t really make a big deal of that, though. Rugged, tough, and wickedly handsome. He knows best and expects compliance. And according to Jo, he’s a small-town, local yokel, chauvinistic cop.
Poor Jo. He’s just the kind of man that sets her teeth on edge. And she’s going to have to work with him on her case. Oil and water. Cats and dogs. Get the picture? Fireworks and volcanoes. Sparks, sparks, and more sparks.
He’s everything she despises. Bossy, hot-tempered, hard-headed. So why does she keep getting this image in her head? This vibe? This intense emotion of sorrow and regret? An unbidden image and three exasperating words. Lost. Little. Boy. That doesn’t fit the man at all! Have her instincts gone wonky?
Oh, Jo. She’s in a quandary now. How in the world is she going to define this guy? He’s nothing at all like Nick. So, in which of her boxes does he belong? Rugged—tough—man? Or, tender—gentle—child? Well, she’d better figure it out quick if she wants to make it through her case with her sanity intact. Because he certainly can’t be both. Right?
Ready to meet some villains? Next up, Zebadiah Proffit.
If this is your first FURY UNLEASHED post, please read previous FURY UNLEASHED posts first – from earliest to latest. Thanks.
Remember those two men I promised to tell you about? Well, here we go. First up, Nicholas Bale. Physically, Nick is a Chris Hemsworth type. You know who that is, right? Ever seen the Thor movies? Remember the one where he has short hair? Rangnarok, I think it was. Are you picturing it? No wait! He definitely does not have all those slashes and zigzags shaved into his hair. So, yeah, without those. Well, and he’s not quite as muscular, but pretty close. He does work out. Did I say pretty? Oh yeah, Jo certainly thinks so. Really pretty. She might not want or need a man in her life, but the girl’s not blind.
Nick volunteers for Stacy at the local animal shelter. He’s a compassionate and dedicated animal advocate. In fact, he’s so good with the animals that Stacy would love it if he would fill the recently vacated position of animal control officer at her shelter. He’s also a super sweet guy.
That’s not all he is. He’s downright gaga goo-goo over Jo. I mean, head over heels. When he looks at her he sees the future. He has it in his head that she’s his destiny.
I’m sure you can see the problem here. Jo is so not down with that! Remember I told you in my first blog post about her stance on romance and men? Well, let me tell you, once she decides which planet, it’s Elton John-time for him! And I think it’s gonna be a long, long time. See what I did there?
Elton John? Rocket Man? Get it?
Will she really send him to another planet? Or will she succumb to his advances? Will sparks ignite between them? Hmm, I wonder.
Next up – Jake McDermott. Unless you’re a criminal, then it’s Sheriff Jake McDermott to you.
Meet Jo Moore.
No, not this dog! Although, there are quite a few of them in my book. No, Jo Moore is the protagonist of my novel. Well, it’s really Jolie Angelina Moore. Yep, you read that right. Thanks to her crazy mother’s obsession with the father of a certain pouty-lipped actress, she ended up with a variated name she despises. Not the actress, just the name.
Jo is an empath. That’s someone who can feel the emotions and pain of others. She also feels her own emotions more deeply than most of us. Tender-hearted and emotionally fragile, these are words some use to describe her. Well, she’s had about enough of that.
And another thing she’s had enough of is people trying to tell her she needs a boyfriend, husband, lover. WHAT!? No way and no thanks. Her fragile heart was broken when she was nineteen. Nineteen, you say? That was a long time ago considering she’s currently twenty-seven. She should have gotten over that by now. Right? WRONG! Remember when I told you she was an empath? Yeah, well, that means she intends never to go through pain like that EVER AGAIN!
So, what does she do about it? She joins the FBI. Not just the regular old FBI. A recently added division of the FBI. The Humane Law Enforcement Division (Note from me, the author: This is not a real division. I made it up! I write fiction, remember? Yeah, sad, I know. There absolutely should be one though. Don’t you agree?).
Can’t you just see the problems coming this poor girl’s way? Oh. My. God. An emotionally fragile empath working to bring down the world’s most heinous animal abusers. You’ve heard about them, right? You’ve heard what they say? Children who are animal abusers often turn out to be serial killers when they grow up.
You probably guessed it. She meets one. Face to face! Right when she’s ensconced in her first case. And boy is it a doozy! I’m talking about the dark, sadistic, underground world of a dogfighting operation. Talk about emotional trauma! But I digress. Anyway, back to the serial killer. She not only meets him but gets rather tangled up with him.
As if all that wasn’t enough on her plate, much to her dismay and through no fault of her own, two men come into the picture. A really sweet one and a really… Let’s just say he’s the very epitome of the type of man she despises. You know the type. Rough. Rugged. Macho. Know it all. Um-hm, exactly the kind that sets her blood boiling. Would you believe she actually has to work with him? He’s the local sheriff, so she doesn’t really have a choice. Let me tell you, he drives her CRAZY!!!
Want to know more about Jo and the people in her life? Like, maybe these two men I mentioned? Check back for updates from time to time!
I am currently looking for representation for FURY UNLEASHED, featuring Jo Moore.
December 30, 2018
An insistent knock on the door and the resulting persistent barking of my little doggy shocked me out of my morning reverie. “Who in the world could that be?” I wondered, as I placed my coffee cup on the nearby table. The blanket covering my body decided now would be a good time to play a prank and thought it would be quite funny to catch my feet by surprise, while I rose from my recliner to go put a stop to all the racket. I stumbled, but didn’t fall, thank goodness, and made my way to the door.
Now, a knock on your door may not be such a shock to you but in my neck of the woods, which is pretty much out in the boonies where people mostly keep to themselves, visitors are few and far between. There on my front porch stood my neighbor, with a very old dog in tow.
“Can you help me with this?” she asked. “I found this old dog lying in the bed of hay I made for my dogs. I think someone may have dropped him off, but I can’t keep him at my house. One of my dogs doesn’t like strange dogs and would eat him alive. Maybe you could keep him here until someone from the animal shelter can come get him.”
I knew right away why she came to me. Everyone who knows me knows I’m a dog lover and a bleeding-heart animal rights activist. I invited her in to wait while I attempted to contact the animal shelter. The poor old guy had already laid down on my porch and seemed content to stay there, so she agreed to come in. Unfortunately, we found out the animal shelter is currently closed and will not reopen until after New Year’s Day. My significant other, while he’s also a dog lover, doesn’t have a heart that bleeds quite like mine, and therefore, doesn’t roll with taking in strays for more than an hour or two.
Now what to do? I can’t leave this poor old dog to fend for himself. I made a spontaneous decision. I would ask my neighbor to walk with me to take him to my mother’s. My mother lives fairly close by and there’s already a dog-bed and dog-food in her garage that I had put there for my brother’s dog, who wanders back and forth between her own home and my mother’s.
So off we go. The old fella’s breathing is labored and he can barely walk. My neighbor had put a leash around his neck and was practically dragging him along. Instantaneously, the white-hot searing heat of anger crept up my toes and exploded out the top of my head. “How in the hell could someone do this to this poor old guy? How could someone who owned a dog for as many years as it appears this guy is old, just drop him off to fend for himself when he’s obviously on his death bed?” I raged. “Look at him! I don’t think he can even make it much farther!” I boomed. She agreed, wholeheartedly.
Suddenly a noise interrupts the temper tantrum. All heads, except Old Fella’s which is still hanging low from fatigue, turn toward the sound. A car engine. At that precise moment, a small gray truck approaches and pulls to a stop beside us. A window rolls down. “Do you recognize this dog?” I ask.
“Yes, it belongs to my father-in-law.”
“Oh my Gosh! He was found at her house.” I pointed to my neighbor. “We were just taking him to my mother’s. We thought someone had dropped him off and we were taking him there to stay until the animal shelter opens. I’m so glad you came along!”
“I don’t know how he got out. He must have found a hole in the fence or something. Let me turn around and I’ll come back and get him and take him home.” He drove away.
The old dog, no longer able to stand, laid down on the road to rest. The man returned with a woman beside him. Old Fella, hearing the motor return, raised his head slightly and then immediately lowered it again. The woman got out and stepped around the truck. “Hi, Riley,” she said. The dog simply laid still. No movement or acknowledgement, just laid completely still. The short distance we had walked had taken a huge toll. “He looks like he may be on his last legs,” I said. “Yes, he probably is. He’s 16 years old,” she said.
They picked him up and placed him in the back of the truck. The woman climbed over the tailgate and sat beside Riley, cradling his head in her lap. The man returned to the driver’s seat and they drove away.
I stood there, in the middle of the lonely country road, and stared after them. My anger, now diluted, simultaneously evolved into sorrow and happiness. I know, in my heart, that Riley probably left home to find a place to die. I know, in my heart, that he was all alone and his humans, occupied with the events of the holidays, probably didn’t even realize he was fading away. I know, in my heart, that the events that transpired today alerted them to the fact; and I know, in my heart, that he will now be taken care of and will not be alone during his last hours or days on this earth. Tears stream down my face.
Karma. They say she’s a bitch. Right now, at this very moment in time, I think she’s an angel.