In Fire Burns Hot (book 5), we continue the story of Ethan, Elizabeth and Callen, but we are introduced to two more characters.
Julian Littlemoon likes women without baggage. He lives life carefree and to the fullest. Then on that fateful day, he meets Special Agent Victoria Christensen and everything changes. Not only does he fall hard and fast, but he would do anything to heal her broken spirit- no matter what the cost.
Tori Christensen is an ex-Army soldier, haunted by one moment that changed her life forever. She managed to dodge Julian once before, but this time she’s fighting the truth that haunts and chases her. Facing him on her turf should be easy, but Julian complicates everything in her well-ordered life.
Now they’re working together again, trying to find a serial arsonist with the propensity for killing strippers just to watch them burn. Partnered up with her boss, Elizabeth Blackhawk, Tori has to stay one step ahead or she just might be the next woman going up in flames.
Sometimes love is forever, and sometimes it’s just until the flame goes out…
Prologue from Fire Burns Hot.
Women should be cherished as a gift from the gods. Soft skin, long silky hair and bodies meant to bring men hours of pleasure. In life, there were few things that could drive a man to madness and women were at the top of the list.
That’s why he killed them.
Yes, he should treat them like the fairer sex and worship at the temple of their bodies, but for him they just didn’t matter. Once you’ve had one woman, they all blended together. In fact, nothing made them stand out to him, except the end of their lives. That he’d remember without a doubt. When the life was ripped away and the empty shell remained, battered and bruised, he would save it deep in his mind.
Death was only one thing that called to him.
Madness was in the eye of the beholder in his case. In his mind, there was nothing wrong with purchasing a woman, getting her to do whatever you wanted, and then dispose of her like trash. All the women he found were lowly whores, selling their bodies and souls to the men that they courted for the almighty dollar. Why should they matter to him, when they obviously didn’t matter to themselves.
A whore was a whore even in her dying moments.
He stood over her on the bed in the cheap motel, smiling down at the very dead eyes. The irony was that alive, they held the same exact stare. Nothing had changed since her heart had stopped beating. Eyes told the tale and were the windows to the soul. Hers said a great deal of the woman inside.
They were empty.
Cold and vacant.
Now in death they still told the same story of a prostitute that was used up and enjoyed it. When he found her on the street, it was just too easy to follow her back to her flop and get what he wanted. Sex with her was easy. She wasn’t interested in getting off. All she needed was the cash to pay her pimp, and then get her drug fix. To dull her pain, all it took was a smile, a wad of money and need.
When she offered herself to him by leaning in his car window, he just knew.
She was the one.
Because it was her time to die.
Soon the endless pain living in her would vanish.
Everything about this one was perfect. All his requirements were met. No one would miss her, she was willing to have sex, and then there was his favorite part…
Nothing called to him more than the silky waves. God, he had a thing for a slut with long tresses. Not because he enjoyed it running across his body during sex, but when he lit them on fire it mattered. Nothing was more fascinating to watch than the hair shriveling, as the flames licked at them wickedly. Then you had the smell.
Oh, the delicious smell of burning woman with lovely hair.
It was so perverse, and yet so damn perfect.
Something so primitive called to him when he thought about it. The first time he killed, it made him throw up, as he was racked with guilt, but now… oh, it made him stronger. It fueled him through his next rendezvous with the following worthless woman. It wasn’t lost on him, even in his madness, that each kill was more vile than the last. Where it was leading him, he didn’t know. But it pushed him on and made him want more and more death. The longing was unquenchable, and he was addicted to the power.
He was the self-proclaimed God of whores.
It was delicious to use the women, knowing they wouldn’t see the next day. Their lives were over and forfeited at his hand.
So far, no one had even noticed them missing. It simply proved what he’d believed all along.
Whores were expendable.
No one cared what happened to the unloved women of the streets. Their destroyed, charred flesh was simply bagged and tagged. Bodies were carted off to the morgue to be housed, until someone who cared showed up.
He laughed at that thought. No one cared enough to love them while they lived. Why bother when they were a burnt hunk of meat?
In his opinion women were disposable, and he planned on using them and tossing them away.
Combining the destitute dregs of the street with the power of fire was absolute bliss.
By taking his love of the flame, mixing it with the destruction of the wanton flesh, he’d achieved nirvana. It was the most beautiful art to watch unfold, telling the ultimate story.
Glee filled him, as it destroyed the body so much, that the Medical Examiner and coroner had a hard time finding the truth. It was the perfect medium to commit the crime.
Whores didn’t really get medical attention or leave a paper trail, and that’s why he picked them to be his unwilling victims.
Why concern yourself with women of the night?
Placing her body in just the right spot on the bed, he artfully arranged her hair. It was a gorgeous shade of blonde, and to his delight, he found natural. His fingers combed through it, anticipating what was to come. Closing her very dead eyes, he began pouring the accelerant across her naked flesh.
He looked around the room making sure there was nothing left behind that would tie him to the woman. As he took the last look, his heart pounded in his chest at the sheer beauty of what was to come. Her death would be cleansing.
This time he couldn’t stay and watch, because the Motel was a public place. The next time though, he planned on taking the girl somewhere more secluded. A place that would be just theirs.
Like the last one whose life he stole. Part of him was sad that he couldn’t stay until the bitter sweet end. It was part of the enjoyment to smell the burning skin, the shriveling hair, and the putrid destruction of the human form.
Alas, there was a reason he couldn’t remain. Each time he was forced to change it up, so the cops wouldn’t have a clue on how to find him. As of yet they didn’t even have a suspect in the killings. The tally was now four, and already he knew who he wanted for the next woman.
There was this sweet little redhead that he found at the strip club. She was destined to be his. All it would take is a promise of cash, and she’d do all he asked, willingly.
He pondered her perspective. Would the redhead now think she was still sexy, as the fire began eating away at her flesh? As the skin charred black with carbon, would she want men to see her? Would it all be worth selling herself, as her beautiful tresses melted and filled the air with vile smoke? Would there be repentance for her foul existence, even in her last few moments as she met her maker?
Possibly he’d have to keep her alive to ask and get the answers he curiously sought.
Already he was getting excited in more ways than one.
Dropping the match, he walked out the door. The whole place was going to go up like kindling in minutes. By the time they found her, she’d be nothing more than a pile of ash in the ruins of a sleazy motel.
As he closed the door and walked to his car, he whistled a happy tune. Now he’d go home and dream about what he just did, and begin planning for the next girl.
Pulling out of the parking lot, he glanced back to observe the flames flicker at the one window of the seedy room. In his mind he could visualize her hair curling under the heat and her body cooking on the cheap bedding.
It all seemed fitting.
God, he loved fire and women. The combination of them both made him all hot and bothered. He accelerated and reveled in the power coursing through his body.
Soon there’d be another and another…
Life was a beautiful thing.
If you were the predator and not the prey.
Two Weeks Later
The sex with this one was mediocre at best, but the killing made up for everything the intercourse lacked. This one fought hard. Like a little wild cat, going hard into her demise.
He’d had his doubts, as he used her body to find release. The woman seemed so cold and dead inside, but then the fire came out.
Once she knew the truth about what was going to happen to her, she fought hard to live.
His plan was to ask her why, but as she scratched and kicked at him to escape, anger took control. In the end, he stole from her the last vestige of life.
During it all something was made blatantly clear. It was so much more gratifying when they fought. This was something he needed to consider for the next one. Using her was one thing, but finding himself ready for another round just after her struggles called to something in him. Apparently, he’d need to consider adding this to his ritual.
Some might call it depravity, but he called it delicious release.
He smiled as his hands did the dirty work, strangling every breath from her recently used body. A couple times he stopped the killing to use her again and again, only to ultimately choke life from her already prone form.
In his mind, he could completely rationalize it all. This one deserved to die by his hands. He wasn’t planning on taking a woman that night. It was more of a mission to find the next one, but this one came to him. After a few lap dances that barely monopolized his time, she’d been foolish to follow him out of the strip club for the offer of more money. When she offered herself up, he took it as a sign.
In his book stupidity had its price.
Isn’t that what he heard his whole damn life? If you did something unwise, you paid dearly. Well, being a greedy whore was pretty damn ignorant.
He carefully arranged her body, not that it would matter. Once the fire began heating the flesh and muscles, they’d constrict and she’d take on a horrible form. That took a while, so until then he’d entertain himself with the more gratifying aspects of the kill.
The dead look on her face.
The smell of flesh sizzling in the flames.
The subcutaneous fat oozing through the cracks in the skin that bubbled, adding fuel to the fire.
Lighting the match, he actually laughed out loud with perverse giddiness. Dropping it onto the body, he stepped back to watch his handiwork. The fire engulfed the whore’s clothing and then began to lick at her flesh. Bubbles formed as the skin blistered before charring. They spread wickedly, as the fire found its path the top of her head. The brown hair lost its color, as it was swallowed by the flames. It curled and shriveled under the heat, giving off its distinctive odor.
He shuddered with extreme pleasure at the way her body responded to the rising temperature. It bowed and already began its fiery dance. Muscles began constricting and skin went taut.
Her mouth slowly opened, as if screaming in some silent horror. Begging for someone to help and save her from the destructive heat.
Oh, how he wished he could stay here and watch the police find his latest victim.
But he knew that couldn’t happen.
It was time to go, and he derived all the pleasure he could from this one.
Walking away from the woman, he bid her adieu, thanking her for the good time. It would be part of his recollections forever.
The final task was scan the ground, assuring he had all his things. Climbing into the vehicle and driving away, there was hope that she’d be found sooner, rather than later.
“Goodbye,” he whispered to the already deaf ears.
Now it was time to go home, sleep off this high, and start looking for the next piece of ass he’d be adding to his little collection of memories.
There was nothing he loved more than a trashy woman going up in flames.
Morgan Kelley lives in the beautiful Pocono Mountains with her husband and two children. After attending college at Penn State University and studying Criminal Justice, Morgan knew here only true passion in life would be murder and books. She put them both together and began her career as a writer. Other than books and writing, you can find Morgan hanging out in her garden and digging in the dirt.
Her other works include: The Junction, Serial Sins, The Killing Times (book 1), Sacred Burial Grounds (book 2), True Love Lost (book 3), Deep Dark Mire (book 4), Fire Burns hot (book 5) The Blood Betrayal, The Blood Redemption, The Blood Vengeance, and The Blood Retribution.
Upcoming Projects and Released Projects
FBI Stand Alones
The FBI Series
Darkness Of Truth (6) Out summer of 2013
Home Sweet Evil (7) Out for Halloween 2013
The Blood Series – Vampyres
The Blood Betrayal- (1) Currently only available in paperback http://www.amazon.com/The-Blood-Betrayal-M-Kelley/dp/1424149533/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1345643115&sr=8-1-fkmr1&keywords=the+blood+vengeance+m.+kelley
The Blood Redemption (2) kindle and paperback http://www.amazon.com/The-Blood-Redemption-Volume-2/dp/1477444920/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1345643115&sr=8-3-fkmr1&keywords=the+blood+vengeance+m.+kelley
The Blood Vengeance (3) Kindle and paperback http://www.amazon.com/The-Blood-Vengeance-Volume-3/dp/1478360534/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1345649984&sr=8-1&keywords=the+blood+vengeance+m.+kelley
The Blood Retribution (4) Kindle and paperback http://www.amazon.com/The-Blood-Retribution-Series-ebook/dp/B00BWE7IWQ/ref=tmm_kin_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1368360090&sr=1-8
The Blood Seduction (5) Christmas 2013
The Private Investigator Series
Stolen by Moonlight (1) out fall of 2013
The Croft & Croft Series
Vegas is Dying – Out fall 2013
Please feel free to visit Morgan at her website: www.morgankelley.com, drop her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or pop into her blog at www.morgankelley.blogspot.com