OS: Welcome to RK Staunton, author of Gabriel! Thanks so much for stopping by and talking with us about your new book!
What’s your favorite type of romance hero? I have to admit I’m a sucker for the protective type, particularly if that protective type is secretly hidden inside a dominant personality. It’s no secret to anyone who knows me well that I have a thing for dominant men. Gabriel Ingram, the title character for my novel Gabriel, is certainly one of those men. Despite a reputation for being cold and aloof, he has a secret protective side too, but his is only for Lucas. He’s a bit different from my normal hero in that he fits more into the category of bad boy with a heart of gold than the typical boy next door types I write in my other pen name as Ruth Staunton.
I’ll be the first to admit that I like the good guys. Gabriel is a good guy underneath it all, but he’s far harder and edgier than what I’m used to. Like all the men in The Order of the Black Knights, he doesn’t mind playing dirty nor wading into the middle of it all – blood, guts, violence and all. After all, he’s a former CIA operative and assassin, and that’s hardly the first time he’s worked as a hired gun. He might be a closet good guy, but he firmly believes that the ends justify the means and has no problem using whatever means necessary to get the job done.
That was a stretch for me. It’s pretty far from my own worldview, but at the same time, it makes a lot of sense for this particular character. He’s had a hard life, or perhaps I could say more accurately, lives, so of course he has hard edges. Trying to blunt them would have been a disservice to both the character and the story. Besides, sometimes we need the people who will just plow through and get the job done. If you like that sort of hero, then Gabriel is definitely a man for you.
Gabriel Ingram is running from his past. It’s common knowledge at the college where he teaches that he’s a former CIA technical analyst, but no one knows the things he really did—or about the rage and bloodlust that are his constant companions. He’s holding on to his normal life with both hands, but he knows someday he’ll lose his grip.
Lucas Craig is a social worker studying to become a family therapist. For reasons Lucas can’t understand, the normally reclusive Professor Ingram takes an interest in him, and Lucas secretly hopes their friendship might become more.
Then Eric, Lucas’s roommate, disappears. Lucas is frantic. The police are no help. With nowhere else to turn, Lucas begs Gabriel for his expertise.
What starts as a simple errand to help a friend becomes a journey into a violent world of gangs and human trafficking—one that will bring Gabriel face-to-face with the forces intent on stealing his soul. But Lucas might be the one who can save him—if Gabriel can get them out alive.
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/gabriel-rk-staunton/1126080894
Dreamspinner Press: https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/gabriel-by-rk-staunton-8342-b
Dammit. As much as Gabriel hated to admit it, most of the evidence was telling him Lucas had been right from the start. Something had gone terribly wrong, and someone needed to find out where Eric was.
Gabriel just wished that someone didn’t have to be him. But the local police weren’t doing the job, and until he had some concrete proof, the state police wouldn’t get involved. And the feds couldn’t intervene unless what was going on fell under federal jurisdiction. It all came back to proving Eric was in danger. There was no way around it.
For a long moment, Gabriel could do nothing more than stare at the picture in his hand and swear vehemently. He was a college professor. He didn’t deal in shadows and secrets anymore.
Gabriel scrubbed his free hand through his hair and took a deep breath. Okay, enough of that. How could he identify the man in the picture? For the briefest of seconds, Gabriel missed his old job, his old life. At the agency he had analysts and technicians he could call on. It was so routine he never gave it a thought. He wasn’t at Langley, but he did still keep in contact with one guy….
Moose could make the identification. Gabriel didn’t have the slightest doubt. Myles Hadley, a.k.a. Moose, was one of the most talented analysts Gabriel had ever known. He had personally seen Moose enlarge and identify images that were hardly bigger than stray pixels. Moose left the CIA a couple years before Gabriel to take work in the private sector. He now owned and operated his own business and did contract work for the government, the military, and a select few private clients, primarily powerful men with big money and even bigger secrets. Gabriel hadn’t spoken to Moose in some time, but he knew that, if he called, Moose would be there.
If he called….
Making that phone call would take him one step back into the life he swore he would never go back to. If he made the call, would he be able to stay away? Or would the pull of that life, dangerous drudgery though it was, be too much? Would the agency get wind he was sniffing around and try to seduce him back in? Could he even afford to take the chance?
On the other hand, how could he even consider not using all the resources at his disposal? Eric was clearly in trouble—though what kind of trouble remained to be seen. It would be unconscionable for Gabriel not to try to get Eric out of it because of his own insecurities. For Lucas the choice would be clear. He wouldn’t hesitate to sacrifice himself for the sake of someone else.
But Gabriel was nothing like Lucas, despite whatever delusions Lucas might be laboring under. He had far too healthy a sense of self-preservation to throw himself under the bus like that for someone else. Gabriel learned very early on to rely on himself and only himself. Other people might come through every once in a while, but most of the time they just let you fall on your face in the mud, and there was no one there to pick you up but yourself.
But sometimes you had to use your resources, and he trusted Moose as much as he trusted anybody. If he had to involve someone, Moose would be the best person.
About The Order of the Black Knights:
Every century has seen its knights. But there are those who are never seen. They do what must be done—what has to be done—when nobody wants to get their hands dirty. They are called the Black Knights. First created in the 1100s by the wizard Moriel, these men seem cold and hard, and it is said that some have no soul. But for each knight, there is one who can bring out the man who waits inside. The question is whether or not he will kill the individual before he figures it out.
Through the ages, they’ve conquered and ruled and taken what they wanted. And they have adapted to modern times. Instead of being bullies for hire, they have taken their skills further—the Internet, the CIA, government infiltration, hacking, special ops, assassination, but each one of them has a need they don’t understand—to squash, kill, or destroy.
About the Author:
RK Staunton rebelled against having a Christmas birthday in favor of making an unexpected debut in early fall, and she’s been doing the unexpected ever since. This tendency has resulted in many adventures, including a ten-year stint as a guide in that strange urban jungle called middle school. While entertaining, that expedition ultimately proved too harrowing. After finally making her escape, she turned to a quieter life masquerading as a crazy cat lady living in a small town in the southeastern US.
RK has lived with a menagerie of characters inside her head for as long as she can remember. In a desperate bid to preserve her sanity, she has begun to transcribe the tales they tell her. This endeavor has proven to be fun, occasionally profitable, and cheaper than therapy. It has also fueled raging addictions to caffeine and chocolate on top of her lifelong addiction to books, but everyone is entitled to a vice or three, right?
RK also writes spanking and domestic discipline romances as Ruth Staunton. Right now, these are M/F, but several M/M stories are coming later this year. You can find out more about those books and get a free story here.
Find her Online:
Website – http://www.rkstaunton.com/
Newsletter – http://www.rkstaunton.com/home/newsletter/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/rkstaunton/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/rk_staunton