I’m sitting in a nondescript coffee house in Salt Lake City, UT. (Beans & Brew). Because I’ve been told: “Just because you write the shit, doesn’t mean you are trustworthy to visit.” Which I find rather ironic. I mean I did write it didn’t I?
So with that in mind I am waiting for Ryder, and I assume Kyra to come to me because I am not allowed to go The Staten. And again the irony of the situation is not lost on me. I’m sipping my favorite coffee, a Caramel Cielo and wondering briefly if meeting in a coffee house for a Tracker’s sense of smell isn’t a bad idea maybe I should have picked a book store or a park. But then I hear it the deep rumble of a motorcycle, you know the kind that you feel deep in your chest before your ears register the sound. And part of me wants to jump up and run to the windows. But I force myself to stay in my chair, I notice several of the women in the coffee house look up to appreciate the view, and I know it’s him. And I wonder for a second if I should have scoped out the back exit. After all, I wrote him, and I know how freaking dangerous he is.
As the door opens and the air is displaced the first thing I realize about him is that he is so much bigger in real life. Like HOLY SHIT, he is larger than life! And I’m in awe, the next thing I notice is the way he scans the entire restaurant in one glance. I wonder if the other patrons realize that the larger than life guy that just walked in is capable of killing them with his bare hands.
And Kyra is following him, and she is just as beautiful as he is out of this world. Her nostrils flare as she takes in the different smells. I can almost see her cataloging all the different smells and lives. And I wonder what I have created here. I lock eyes with Kyra, and she winks as she pushes past Ryder on her way to the counter and places an order. Once that is done they both make their way over to the booth, I am sitting in and Kyra slides in first the Ryder.
Kyra gives me a large smile, “How are you today Christie?” she asks. I’m just speechless for a moment.
“Are you mute?” Ryder finally asks, and I turn to him.
“No.” I stumble. “I just can’t believe I’m sitting here. It’s a serial feeling.”
Kyra laughs softly, “Tell us about it.”
I nod, and motion to my notepad full of questions, “Um do you just want me to get started?”
Ryder glares at my notepad and reaches over and grabs it, “Hey!” I say, he can’t just take things away from me I should be in charge. But he raises one eyebrow at me like I’m going to stop him, right?
“My favorite color is black. I train in my spare time. My most important thing in the world is Kyra and my brothers. Favorite food is steak. Favorite drink is water. Shoe size? Seriously?” he rolled his eyes. Guess that means he wasn’t going to answer that one. “Music? I listen to whatever Kyra puts on my iPod. I don’t watch movies or TV. Scariest monster I have ever come across?” He sighed and rolled his eyes again. I think he might have gotten that trait from Kyra because she does that a lot. And I was getting sick to my stomach because this interview was not going the way I had planned. But luckily I was saved because the barrister called out their order, and he threw my notepad down on the table.
Kyra grabbed it and looked at it, “Can I give you some advice?”
“Please.” Because I needed all the help I could get at this point.
“Stop letting him control the interview,” Kyra said with a smile. “He thinks he can intimidate you.” I look over at Ryder and then it’s me that’s rolling my eyes, “Have you seen the man? He’s like…” and I want to rest my head against the coolness of the tabletop.
“Yes, I know,” Kyra says with a pat on my hand. “But take control, you can do it.” She pulls her hand away as Ryder returns with two coffee cups. One for himself and one for Kyra.
“Ryder?” I say taking a deep breath, I use my mother tone, the one that makes my kids listen to me. “What kind of coffee are you drinking?” I ask.
He blinked, which made me blink. “Eye Opener.” See I was expecting black. Surprise, surprise.
“What do you do when nobody is looking?”
Me: “What are you reading?”
Ryder: “None of your business.”
Kyra chuckled, and I knew I had to have this answer.
Me: “You promised you would answer all my questions.”
Kyra: “You did promise.”
Ryder: “Did you know women are very hard to understand?”
Me: “Matter of opinion.”
Ryder: “Fact. I don’t understand women. I don’t think I ever will.”
Me: “So you are doing something to rectify this?”
Ryder shrugged, “Trying to figure you out. I tried some self-help books, but that was all bullshit. So I’ve been reading some romance novels.”
My mouth fell open, actually fell open. Kyra reached over and closed it for me. “I think I might have heard you wrong. Can you please repeat that last part for me?”
He speaks very slowly for me, “I said I have been ready romance novels in the hope of understanding women.” Kyra nodded as he spoke, and I turn to her. “I don’t understand what he is trying to accomplish.”
Ryder looked at Kyra and then back to me, “See that’s because she is a woman. Women are complicated creatures. Ask Marcus he will agree, and he and Celeste are connected with a mind link.”
Me: “Um not about to ask Marcus to explain women to me with Celeste sitting next to him.”
Ryder grunts, “Yeah, pretty sure Celeste would kick your ass.” I can’t agree more.
“Okay, so who are you currently reading?” I can’t wait to hear this. “Do you read paranormal? Chick-lit? Erotica?”
Ryder looks at me like I’ve lost my mind, “I read all sorts of romance. I don’t pigeon hole myself to just one genre’. But I don’t read paranormal because it just pisses me off with how wrong they all get it.” I guess that makes sense.
“So who are you currently reading?” I ask again. And I swear if Ryder was ever going to blush this was the time, but I don’t think Ryder is capable of blushing I just don’t think it’s in his genes.
“His favorite at the moment is Nora Roberts,” Kyra explains, of course, everyone loves her I think. “Julie Garwood historical stuff” Another excellent author. “And Johanna Lindsay.”
I’m pretty speechless, “So is it helping?”
Kyra gives me a huge smile, and Ryder looks uncomfortable. “None of your business.”
Me: “So you won’t say if you understand women better?”
Ryder: “Women are still a mystery. Do you have any other questions?”
I think for a moment not daring to even look at my notepad for help. “What do you want the fans to know about the Trackers?”
Ryder: “Not a fucking thing.”
Me: “Ouch, guess I walked right into that one.”
Ryder gave me the first real smile since this interview started. And instead of reassuring me it sends chills down my spine.
Me: “What are you and Kyra working on right now?”
Ryder: “Secret mission, so if I told you I’d have to kill you.”
I look from Ryder to Kyra, and they are both unreadable. Again the irony of the situation isn’t lost on me.
Me: “You realize I’m the author here right?”
Ryder: “Yup, but even you don’t know everything all the time. Sometimes we characters are building arc’s in the background while shit is happening in other places.” He winks at me and the chills I have increased tenfold.
Me: “There sure are a lot of irons in the fire right now Ryder. The Tribunal is messing around right now. The Reapers are in a lot of trouble, and your brothers are getting more involved than ever.” I warn.
Ryder: “Shit never goes the way it’s supposed to, does it, Christie.” He slides out of the booth and holds out his hand for Kyra.
Kyra gives me a smile, but it doesn’t quite reach her eyes, “Keep yourself safe and keep writing your stories because the real history needs to be written. Something the Druids forgot to do a long time ago.” I slide out of the booth, and Kyra wraps her arms around me, and the fear from seconds before is washed away.
I extend my hand to Ryder, “Thank you for the interview, Ryder.”
He looks from my hand to my face and then finally takes my hand. His hand is warm and large enveloping mine as he shakes, and then release’s it. I following them to the door and watch as they climb onto the large Harley they never look back as they pull away and drive off.