Friday, July 15, 2011

First Page Friday: Silke Juppenlatz' HOWL

When life hands you wolves -- howl.

The alpha wolf in Zalin's pack is slowing going insane, which is tough enough to contend with, but the guy is gunning for the woman Zalin loves--the rancher's daughter who saved his hide. He's torn between taking off to avoid a confrontation with the Alpha, and sticking around to protect Lucia. Opening his heart to her is not an option-- he's had enough rejection to last a lifetime.

Lucia is fascinated by the "wolf" she saved--at the time unaware he was more than a canine. Zalin seems out to save her from his Alpha, but she wants more than protection from him. When spilled family secrets make her doubt everything she knows, she turns to Zalin for stability, only to learn he's planning to leave.

Will Zalin desert the one he loves when she needs him most, or will he howl a challenge on her behalf?

First Page: 

“Dad! No!” Lucia stepped in front of her father’s gun, waving her arms up and down to make herself a bigger target. “He didn’t do anything.”

The wolf growled, his body tense and ready to jump. Ears flat to his head, amber eyes wild and focused on Lucia, he drew his lip up in a vicious snarl. He’d backed up against the cave wall and had nowhere else to go. It didn’t stop the huge animal from threatening the humans at the entrance.

Graham Masterton pushed his daughter out of the way. “Move aside, Lucy. If he’s not been at the cattle, it won’t be long before he is tempted to get an easy meal.”

“I’m not letting you kill him.” Lucia watched the wolf trot along the wall. Back and forth, looking for a way out. If he charged them, he’d give her father even more of a reason to shoot him. “If we leave, I’m sure he will too.”

Her father shook his head and aimed the shotgun at the animal. “Can’t take the risk.”

“No!” Lucia pushed to throw his aim off. The buckshot went into a wall instead of hitting the wolf, but a pained yelp told her he’d been hit by something anyway. “Dad! How could you!”

The wolf whimpered and snarled at the same time. He was desperate now, darting from one side of the wall to the other, trying to find a way past them. He rushed her, and Lucia jumped back, but the wolf had already retreated. His amber eyes were restless, but he kept staring at her, his breath frosting in the air, still growling, still threatening.

“Damned critter.” Her father reloaded and muttered under his breath. “Don’t ever do something like this again. I could have shot you!”

“Dad, please let him go. Please.” Lucia clutched his arm. “Look at him. He’s scared. I’m sure he’ll run away and never come back.”

“No. This ends, right now. I won’t have him kill my cattle.”

Tears stung Lucia’s eyes. The animal looked so proud. She’d never seen a wolf at such close quarters, not even when her mother had rescued them. This one was magnificent, huge, and nothing like the scraggly beasts she remembered. His coat was a mix of dark brown and tan, with lighter colors surrounding his muzzle. He had a beautifully expressive face, his eyes hinting at intelligence she hadn’t expected to see in a wild animal.

And her father wanted to kill him.


Silke grew up in Germany and is used to things going bump in the night -- and it wasn't always the acrophobic cat, or someone hitting their head on a low beam on the ceiling.
She writes paranormal romance, usually at night, and blames Anne Stuart to this day for all her ambitions and strange stories, after reading one of her books.
These days the only thing going bump at "oh-dark-thirty" is her -- usually when she smacks into the sofa while creeping to the kitchen for another cup of coffee.

Silke likes to hear from her readers. Feel free to contact her via her blog at, follow her on Twitter, or become a friend on Facebook.

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