Of Blood and Ashes
Of Cinder and Bone Book 2
by Kyoko M
Genre: SciFi Fantasy Romance
The world's deadliest dragon, the infamous Baba Yaga, is loose on the streets of Tokyo.
Dr. Rhett "Jack" Jackson and Dr. Kamala Anjali have been tasked with helping the government take down a dragon the size of a Tyrannosaurus Rex after it sends part of the city up in flames. Things worsen when they lose track of dragon in none other than Aokigahara, the Suicide Forest--a section of woods in Japan that is rumored to be one of the most haunted places on earth. They've also got the yakuza who cloned the dragon hellbent on getting her back, and they don't care who they kill in order to re-capture the dragon.
Jack and Kamala are joined by CIA field agent William Fry and dragon-hunting expert Juniper Snow as they infiltrate the forest to hunt the dragon before she can hurt anyone else. Between the ruthless yakuza hot on their trail and the growing mistrust in their small hunting party, it will take a miracle for Jack and Kamala to make it out alive...
Of Blood and Ashes is the second book in the series, following the Amazon bestselling Of Cinder and Bone.
Of Cinder and Bone
Of Cinder and Bone Book 1
OF CINDER AND BONE is Ron Howard's Ransom meets Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park!
After centuries of being the most dangerous predators on the planet, dragons were hunted to extinction. That is, until Dr. Rhett “Jack” Jackson and Dr. Kamala Anjali cracked the code to bring them back. Through their research at MIT, they resurrected the first dragon anyone has seen alive since the 15th century. There’s just one problem.
Someone stole it.
Caught between two ruthless yakuza clans who want to clone the dragon, Jack and Kamala brave the dangerous streets of Tokyo to steal their dragon back in a race against time before the world is taken over by mutated, bloodthirsty monsters that will raze it to ashes.
Of Cinder and Bone is an all-new sci-fi thriller from the author of the Amazon bestselling Black Parade novels. Don’t miss out on this explosive first-in-series! Fans of Westworld, I Robot, Pacific Rim, and Reign of Fire will fall in love with this mashup novel that opens up a whole new world of possibilities into what we know and love about dragons.
**FREE at Amazon and Smashwords!!**
Kyoko M is a USA Today bestselling author, a fangirl, and an avid book reader. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English Lit degree from the University of Georgia, which gave her every valid excuse to devour book after book with a concentration in Greek mythology and Christian mythology. When not working feverishly on a manuscript (or two), she can be found buried under her Dashboard on Tumblr, or chatting with fellow nerds on Twitter, or curled up with a good Harry Dresden novel on a warm Georgia night. Like any author, she wants nothing more than to contribute something great to the best profession in the world, no matter how small.
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"Mind holding up for a second?"
The Scottish woman heaved yet another sigh. "I swear to the almighty, I'm going to leave you here to rot."
Jack scowled. "Do that and I'll find you and haunt the crap out of you."
He stepped behind a tree. Pausing, he glanced around the trunk to see her aiming yet another hateful glare in his direction. "Would you turn around, you freak of nature?"
Snow growled. "What are you? A three-year-old?"
"I can't go when someone's watching."
"I can't even bloody see you."
"Would you just turn around, woman?"
Snow grumbled insults under her breath and faced away from the tree. Jack pulled a face, knowing she couldn't see it, and took care of business. "Christ, it's like you've never been around another human being before. You're about as warm and cuddly as one of those face-huggers from Alien."
"I could use one of those right now," she groused. "Attach it to your face so you'll shut the hell up."
"Oh, I could do that. And then when I don't have a distraction and I mistake you for a killer clown and belt you one, you can break both my arms and call it a day."
"Legs," Snow corrected. "I'd break your legs, Jackson. That way you either starve to death or are completely helpless when the yakuza show up."
"Honestly," Jack said, shaking his head. "No wonder your last name is Snow. I'm gonna start singing the Cold Miser song in a minute."
She whirled around, glaring. "Sing a single line and I'll cut your fingers off, Jackson."
A shit-eating grin spread across his mouth. "I'm Mister--"
He stopped abruptly just after he'd zipped up and stepped around the tree. Without another word, he threw himself on top of Snow just as the man who had appeared behind her pulled the trigger.
The gunshot nearly deafened Jack from so close. A piercing whine filled his ears, but Jack didn't have time to notice the pain. The second after he'd tackled Snow, he grabbed a log behind her head and swung it as hard as he could at the man's knee as he aimed at them again. The log made a sharp cracking sound against the man's patella, shattering it, and the shots went to the left, missing them both. Jack lunged forward and grabbed the gun, yanking the barrel up and away from him. Gritting his teeth, he slammed the top of his skull down on the man's nose and the man reeled backwards, dazed. Jack jerked the gun out of the attacker's grip and kicked him in the injured knee. The mercenary crumpled to the ground with a scream.
Jack pointed the rifle at his head, barking, "Stay down!"
The merc glared at him from the ground, but remained still. Jack tried to slow his racing heartbeat and tilted his head slightly, not taking his eyes off the man, as Snow rose to her feet.
"Fine," Snow said, picking leaves out of her long tresses.
"The word you're looking for is 'thank you.'"
"Piss off," she snapped.
Jack grinned, replying in a sing-song voice. "I saved your life. Ha-ha, ha-ha, ha!"
"Go to hell," she seethed.
"Give me the gun, idiot."
Jack shot her a quick skeptical look. "Yeah, that's gonna happen."
She rolled her eyes and crossed her arms. "Do you know how to use that thing?"
Jack adopted an accent reminiscent of Antonio Banderas. "Yes. Barrel end points at the other man."
She narrowed her eyes at him. "Remind me which one of us is hopped up on a hallucinogen again?"
"Oh. Point taken." Jack handed her the rifle. She gave it a brief glancing over. To her surprise, it had .308 rounds rather than the .50 cal rounds that the others had been carrying. The implication was chilling. The shooter might have been dispatched specifically to kill them, not the dragon. Their targets had changed. They were being hunted.
"Are you alone?" she asked the merc.
The man didn't say anything. "No one is going to come find you if we shoot out your remaining kneecap and leave you to die in this forest. Answer the question."
Snow swung the barrel towards the leg he wasn't clutching. "Fine. Enjoy bleeding to death."
She fired the rifle.
"Two men!" he blurted out before he could help himself. "Closing in from the rear."
He frowned, realizing she'd shot the ground a mere inch from his leg, and muttered, "Goddammit" under his breath in resignation.
"Lovely. Thank you for your cooperation." She slammed the butt of the gun into his forehead and he flopped backwards unconscious. She knelt and handed the rifle back to Jack.
"Watch our six. I'll see if he's got anythin' useful." She checked the mercenary's pockets, finding extra ammo, a map, and a burner phone. He had a link in his ear as well, which she took and placed in her own. She stood and unfolded the map, checking the marked locations on it.
"There are two sites marked here," Snow said. "One is the campsite I saw. The other...it's heading back towards the city."
"You think that might be where they'd hide the dragon if they got it?"
"Then we'd better get back to the forest entrance on double-time. We have to warn our guys."
"I'm sure they already know," Snow said, tucking the map into her pocket and then taking the gun back. "Fry's not stupid."
"No," Jack agreed, falling in step behind her once again. "Cold and calculating, but not stupid."
"Not everyone can be as warm and fuzzy and useless as you, Jackson."
"Yep, the warm, fuzzy, useless man who saved your life."
Snow ground her teeth. Jack snickered victoriously.
She held up a fist and Jack stopped. She peered through the rifle's night-vision scope. "There's the other two. Forty yards out straight ahead."
"What's the plan?" Jack whispered.
"Create a distraction and I'll take them out."
Jack aimed an incredulous stare at the back of her head. "Seriously?"
"What?" Snow asked, adopting a facetious innocent tone. "You don't trust me?"
"You just told me you'd break my legs five minutes ago!"
"If I were going to let you die, I'd have done it when I found you. Now make yourself useful and distract them."
Jack let out a frustrated growl. "You are the absolute worst."
Snow smiled smugly and said nothing as he crept off in the direction of the two approaching mercenaries.