Series: The Runner, Book One
Author: Karma Kingsley
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: August 21
Genre: Contemporary, age gap, celebrities, hurt/comfort, interracial, mild BDSM, movie industry, spanking, toys
Alex Banez is a runner for a Los Angeles film set. When he has a chance encounter with executive producer Atwell Richards, he finds himself falling fast and hard. Atwell is rich, powerful, gorgeous, and everything Alex never thought he would have. But Atwell also has a dark side and an inflexible need for control that threatens to suffocate everyone around him.
Alex has to figure out if he can love Atwell without losing himself.
Karma’s Home-Defense Course:
I started working in clubs when I was quite young. Truthfully, much younger than I probably should have, but along the way I’ve met some pretty skeevy people. I’ve had enough stalkers in my life that I’ve learned to determine a nonactive from a “batten down the hatches”. Nonactives are infatuated and they just don’t know what to do with all of those emotions. They’re usually younger and awkward and never actually speak to you but linger in places watching you. Creepy, but harmless. The batten down the hatches are the source of this post. The ones that think you owe them something because maybe they bought you a drink once, or because you spoke to them once, or even simply because you’re a pretty woman and it’s your obligation to be their toy. These come in all forms but they’re easier to pick out, bolder than the nonactive.
So that’s the back story. Here’s the post:
Alright, phase one of home protection:
Rule 1: Never limit yourself to an “either, or” situation. If you see a kettle ball and think, “yeah, I could handle that.” Get it. If you see a baseball bat and think, “yeah, very me.” get it. Stash them throughout the house.
Rule 2: Have a defense method in place for every room of the house. Yes, bathroom included. I pity the woman that doesn’t have a steak knife stashed in the back of her toilet.
Rule 3: Hatch an escape plan from every point in your house, coinciding with entry points. -Keep things like baseball bats, batons and steel based lamps by the window for quick and easy breaks. *I like to keep blankets on chairs by the windows. It’s classy-looking, convenient for guests and if you ever have to break the window you can use it to minimize cuts*
Rule 4: Sttrrraannnggeerr daaannggeerr. If weird people are showing face in your neighborhood, tell the neighbors. Develop a code with your closest neighbors. Like, a quick code word that you can text or call with, along with an emergency knock because sometimes people just don’t answer the door because they don’t want to be bothered with company but if they hear the emergency knock, they know to make haste letting you in.
Ok, so those are the major rules. There are several others but I’m not writing a novel here, so we’ll leave it at that.
Best nonfatal home defenses:
-Mace (guns, long distance sprayers and handhelds)
*Mace burns. Mostly your attacker but if you inhale or open your eyes anywhere in the vicinity that you sprayed it’s going to hurt. Be prepared for that. Maybe do a couple of practice sprays out in the open just so you’re prepared and you know that your device isn’t faulty.*
-Taser (close range and long range)
*Tasers are great but if you get the little hand held ones be prepared for the buzzing.*
-Bats/batons (Electrified and non electrified)
*Electrified batons are crazy easy to hurt yourself with instead of your attacker. The sound and weight alone are enough to startle you into fumbling it into yourself, so practice first. And be sure this is the route you want to take. Also, they can be quite powerful and the smell of burning skin is not pleasant so if you use it, be aware.*
-Knives (a little more fatal but the internet can teach you all you need to know about the best places to strike to subdue and not kill)
*I like to twirl my kitchen knives around when I’m not doing anything, just to practice dexterity. Be aware, a knife is a close range weapon. This means you’re all up on your attacker. I like knives for things like keeping under my pillow or mattress if for some reason someone gets into my house and I don’t wake up and they’re just like hoovering over me.*
-Loud horns (it’s a weird defense method but sometimes just the loudness of it is enough to scare off a shifty predator)
*Also great if you live with other people to alert everyone to danger. I like to shout ominous things like: I have a very particular set of skills…*
-And I’ve recently added kettle balls to the list at the suggestion of a friend
*I’ve been told they’re flammable, so keep them away from flames*
The best thing to remember if someone gets into your house is DON’T PANIC. They are the intruders, they’re in unfamiliar territory and they have no idea that you’ve trained practically all of your 20’s for just this moment. Well…I have anyways.
Also, please, please, please take into account your pet if you go for more toxic defense methods. Also, include your animal in your escape plans. No one gets left behind!
Best places to get home defense items:
I love this place, for a variety of reasons. Their online store I think only has the basics of what they actually offer in-store but I posted the link to the online site because I’m not sure if they’re a national company or just a southern thing.
Nobody needs a link to Amazon. You’re obviously not living under a rock if you found this blog so you know how Amazon works. Type in self defense and you’ll find a variety of nifty tools and gadgets.
Any local self-defense store
If you google self-defense store, if you’re anywhere near a metro there will be one and the people inside will be all too happy to teach you to use anything you’re confused about.
But of course, you could always go the traditional, “get a gun” route too but I’m not equipped to handle that kind of responsibility, so I vie on the side of the nonlethal.
Karma Kingsley © 2017
All Rights Reserved
“Dammit. Son of a…” Alex shook out his hand, holding back a curse as he blew a puff of cool air onto his burning fingers. The skin on his knuckles reddened and sizzled, and he clenched his jaw as he waited for the pain to subside. Goddamn new directors and their tea fetishes. He’d burned himself nearly a thousand times since the new management team had taken over the set. He was certain his hands were merely bone and burn marks, as the last of his skin had certainly just sizzled off.
Taking a deep breath, he carefully placed the scalding hot cup of Orange Jasmine onto a tray with two others, both varying pretentious flavors of tea. His new bosses from Maryland, flown in to save the current film from going up in flames, had a particular palate for teas.
Alex had thought they were joking when they requested that he place an order for the list of nearly fifty different flavors of the beverage, but the cold, sharp looks from his collection of recently arrived employers had quickly assured him that being a “tea connoisseur” was no laughing matter. He’d nodded in obedience and quickly hopped on the task, having to call in nearly every favor owed to him for the more exotic brands. He’d thought that was the hard part, until they had taken to requesting that he deliver them a new flavor of burning hot tea on the hour. In addition to the other millions of tasks he had to complete, he now had a timer attached to his waist, set to beep every fifty minutes and remind him to hydrate the arrogant devils that controlled his paycheck.
Though he wasn’t in the business for the money. God knows he wasn’t in it for the money. The shit job came equipped with equally shitty pay, but this was where he needed to be. Starting from the bottom was the only way to get to the top.
He picked the tray of mugs up and balanced it on his palm, keeping it steady with the light touch of his other hand. He plastered on a smile and moved forward toward the three men sitting confidently in chairs labeled with their individual titles. None of them mattered. They all outranked him.
“Oh, the tea is here,” one of them exclaimed, turning in his chair to reach back for one of the glasses.
Alex opened his mouth to warn him that he was taking the wrong glass. He’d arranged them in the order that they sat, so as not to forget who ordered what, but his effort was futile as the man brought the cup to his lips. He took a sip and immediately spit it back into the cup.
“Is this Pomegranate Raspberry?” he asked angrily.
“Uh, yes. But it wasn’t—” Alex started to answer but was quickly cut off.
The man stood up from his chair. He wasn’t an intimidating man. His features were light, his hair platinum blond, and he was barely half Alex’s size, but he was obviously used to having power and money and thought that his size was more threatening than it actually was. His gaze burned furiously into Alex. “I specifically asked for Red Velvet. Did you think that I wouldn’t taste the difference? Do you think that I’m an idiot?”
Alex stared back at him openmouthed. He had no words. He wasn’t even sure how the two questions correlated. He would never be able to taste the difference between any flavor of tea, ever, and he certainly didn’t think himself an idiot. “Well, it’s just—”
“It-it’s just—” the man mocked him. “Just go, runner.”
Alex stood frozen, still staring at him, and mortified by his outburst.
“I said go, before I find your replacement. Hopefully, one that can read the label on a bag of tea.” The man waved him off as his two companions watched silently. Alex gathered himself. He closed his mouth and turned to leave them to bitch about him and his incompetence. He clenched his teeth together. If you want to be in one of those director chairs one day, then you better damn well keep it together, he reminded himself. He was the set’s bitch boy for now but one day, he’d be running the show. One day soon.
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Karma is a wine-enthusiast, feminist, activist, humanitarian, vegetarian and just all around liberal and that often seeps into her writing. She loves any place with white, white sand and blue, blue water and an endless supply of prefix-mo drinks (Moscato, Mojito, etc.).
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