Title: A Gallows Waited
Release Date: November 2009
Author: Larion Wills
Publisher: Swimming Kangaroo Books
Genre: historical, western, soft romance, also qualifies as YA
Blurb: Bare hours after she is married, Elizabeth Tower is widowed and obligated by her dying husband to care for the man who killed him. The wounded killer said he was not the man Tower thought he was attacking. Though Elizabeth knew who he really was, no one believed her until she struggled free of oppression, made herself heard, and fought to draw Tim Bowman from the hate that possessed him.
Welcome Larion! What is your latest offering?
My latest is A Gallows Waited
What is A Gallows Waited all about?
How hard hates rides a man, bent only on revenge, and how a woman, oppressed all her life can have the freedom she’s always wished for. When the two meet, she learns life for a woman can be more than a servant to some man, father or husband, and he learns no matter how deep his hatred and thirst for revenge, a lady with big blue eyes can distract him.
That sounds interesting. How did you come up with the idea?
I don’t know, or remember exactly, but I’m sure it’s Louis L’Amour’s fault. That’s who I was into reading when I wrote it. Influence, influence.
Tell me about your past releases and a little secret about yourself that no one else knows—I promise I won’t tell!
Past releases cover a wide variety, from the first, The Knowing, which is a fantasy, through Looking Glass Portal, a science fiction, to contemporaries both in soft and hot romance genres, and historical, three others besides A Gallows Waited in the western collection. Some have witchws, some have ghostws, and all mystery or suspense.
As for a secret, don’t know, guess I could tell you I’m a binge reader. Six or seven books at a time, start one, finish, start another, when I take breaks from writing or editing. I buy more by author now than anything else. Since I started publishing, I don’t have as much reading time so I stick to authors I know I like so I’m not disappointed by an unexpected unhappy ending or are just plain boring.
Any new releases on the horizon this year?
I have two new releases coming up soon so far this year, one through Swimming Kangaroo Books, It’s Still Tomorrow and one through XOXO Publishing, The Eternal Search. It’s Still Tomorrow is a contemporary, hot romance, paranormal (witches), suspense. Mouth full, huh? The Eternal Search is a futuristic, soft romance, with time travel and one immortal.
What are you working on right now?
Most of the work I’m doing now is self-editing, getting several manuscripts ready to submit. A large selection to keep the tradition going, a historical, a futuristic, a fantasy, and a hot contemporary.
Thank you for joining me, Larion. Is there anything else you'd like the readers to know?
I would just like to mention that those who like a good western as well as romance will enjoy the western collection, Mark of the Sire, Little Sam’s Angel, Twisted Wind, and A Gallows Waited. They're not just for the ladies, and they are appropriate for young adults as well.
In time more will be coming out, with White Savage being next to go to a publisher. Start a habit, please. They are all available in ebook and print online through www.swimmingkangaroo.com, Amazon, and Barnes and Noble, and too many ebook sites to mention, and most book stores will order them for you.
I’d also like to tell everyone I write under two names, Larriane Wills and Larion Wills. Both of us would like to invite you to visit our site: http://www.larriane.com to see more on all our books, join in a contest if you feel like it, or request an autographed bookplate for the books you’ve bought, and find info on release dates on the new ones.
A Gallows Waited:
Tower had no give in him, one of the reasons Gus thought again of how badly the approaching couple were mismatched and that Mr. Tower was making a fool move--had already made a fool move. The couple was returning from their wedding, after only knowing each other for three days. Love wasn’t involved, Gus was sure of that since Tower had sent for her back east somewhere, and Gus thought there ought to be love. He’d loved his Mary and their baby girl until death took them. No such feeling would be in this marriage. Tower was too hard and cold for it, but no doubt there would be children. Tower had taken a wife young enough to be his own daughter, and he treated her like a servant, not a wife. What was more pitiful, she acted like a servant.
Sitting beside her husband, Elizabeth Tower was staring at the hands folded limply in her lap. Her blond head, hair plaited and wrapped in a knot in the back, raised slightly as the buggy drew to a stop. For just an instant those huge blue eyes, the first thing Gus had noticed about her, touched his and slid away.
“Ma’am,” Gus said, tipping his hat politely and wondering again why she dressed so plain and puritan.
“What do you want, Temple?” Tower asked curtly, jumping to the ground.
“Won’t take a minute,” Gus said, bristling at the man’s arrogant tone. “Got a man out back I’d like to put on to tame that filly.”
Tower helped his bride of only a few hours to the ground and then turned his back on her. “Does he have recommendations?” he queried.
“Only what he says he can do.”
“I’ll speak to him.”
“Sir, Mr. Tower, you don’t need to do that, not right away,” Gus said quickly, looking with embarrassment at Mrs. Tower. “Likely you’d want to see Mrs. Tower into the house.” At least that much, he thought, since they’d just come from being married. “He can wait a few minutes.”
“Nonsense. I’ll talk to him now. Elizabeth, go into the house,” he ordered, leaving her without a backward glance.
Gus ducked his head in embarrassment for her, mumbled an apology, then hurried to catch up. When Gus rounded the corner of the house, he was still five feet short of overtaking Tower. Bowman was still sitting on his horse at the corral fence, watching the prancing filly. What happened then happened so fast, Gus couldn’t do anything more than stare.
Tower took one look at Bowman, stopped dead in his tracks, and screamed, “You!” in a voice choked with horror. He clawed for the gun he carried on his hip, and as soon as he had the gun clumsily in his hands, he began to shoot.
His target looked puzzled, then shocked, and then Bowman shot back. Not in the crazy, wild, panicked way Tower emptied his gun but with cool calculation. Only one shot was returned while that nag of a horse stood solid, one bullet whipping up dirt between her feet, and she only flinched once when one burned her rump.
Bowman’s one shot ended the shooting match, knocking Tower to the ground at Gus’s feet, though Tower’s gun discharged once more as he fell. With the biting smell of burnt black powder in the air, the echoes died away before Gus found his voice again.
“My Gawd,” was all he could say, and since it didn’t seem to be enough, he said it again. “My Gawd.”
“Why did he do that?” Bowman asked, sounding for all the world like he was asking no more than the time of day.
“I was going to ask you that. Don’t you know?”
“I never saw him before.”
“Boy, you better come down off that horse. We’ll have—”
“No,” Bowman said, still soft and low, but with finality. “You saw what happened. You make sure the marshal knows it straight.”
“He’ll want to talk to you,” Gus said, stepping over Tower.
“I don’t want any trouble, so don’t come after me.”