Hell’s Chapel

I’m Caith Morningstar: bar owner, leather wearer, shoe worshipper, werewolf, Orlando’s resident ass kicker and… Satan’s niece.

In the tween—between On High and Hell—I’ve got three rules: order, secrecy, and if you can’t manage that at least have some discretion.  Wait, make that four: no one screws with me or my stuff.  Orlando—land of that famous mouse—is my home and people are either gonna get in line or get out.

Except someone didn’t get that memo.  Now, I’m gonna bust out my bat and smash some heads.  I’ve got zombies demolishing my home, vamps chasing me, and on top of the normal violence in my life, I’m quickly falling for an angel.

I can handle the blood, gore, and frustration, but can I deal with the pain of loving—possibly losing—the angel Samkiel? Probably not, but I’m gonna try anyway.


This is Celia's first foray into urban fantasy as Lauren Creed. What's the difference between Celia's urban fantasy as Lauren and her rocking shifters?

Well, the chicks are still sassy, still curvy, and pretty kick ass.  But with urban fantasy, the world really DOES revolve around her and the ass kicking includes things like swords, knives and the occasional bomb. There's a guy hanging around somewhere who is totes hot, but he's there to look pretty, provide a little muscle, get down and dirty without a lifelong commitment. And he's hot. Did she mention hot?

Basically: lotsa blood, lotsa gore, lotsa chick saving the world combined with a fanatical love of shoes and a totally bangin' ass.

Hell's Chapel: The Orlando mouse's house is filled with demons and she's just the bitch to keep 'em in line.

Read an Excerpt

I shoulda bought a bigger bat. Maybe one of those aluminum jobs. Or steel if they made those. I bet I could get one on the internet. I could get anything on the ’net. Right then, something a little stronger would be appreciated. Metal wouldn’t leave such a big mess for the brownies to clean up once the dust settled.

I cradled the wood, familiar weight settling in my palm, melding with me like an extension of my arm. Louisville Slugger, a classic, a good friend no matter how recently I’d snagged him from the sports store.

“Batter up,” I mumbled under my breath. Then again, I could have screamed the words and not a single being in the bar would have noticed. “Fucking thelac warriors,” I grumbled. “They should know better than to drink themselves stupid.”

“Incoming!” Jezebeth, Hell’s Chapel’s resident bar bitch, and best young witch in the city (her words, not mine), shouted and then covered her ears. She sank beneath the counter, hiding, while I handled things.

I ducked, missing a flying beer bottle, and gritted my teeth when it crashed into the mirror behind me, shattering it into a million small pieces. Custom cut mirrors were expensive. Dammit.

The general betweeners, called tweens, fled at the first sight of trouble, scrambling toward Jezebeth to settle up and scurry home to their mommas. The remaining patrons stuck around to see how the night would unfold. Demons and angels—dems and gels—slumped in their chairs, watching the melee, picking up their glasses when someone needed a table to throw.

I climbed on top of the bar, black soled calf-high Fluevog boots leaving smudges on the polished cherry surface. I’d have to remember to give the brownies a little extra cash to clean up the mess.

I kicked bottles and glasses aside, traveling along the wood toward my prey. Pretty boy had to poke the thelacs and now he was learning what it meant to tangle with something more powerful than himself. Thelacs were seven feet tall, heavily muscled, black-skinned, ageless warriors and they were no one to mess with. They had all the time in the world to become the baddest of the bad.

On High and Hell, save me from idiots. Since I had a few gels in the vicinity, I hoped someone was listening.

My leather pants moved with me like a second layer of skin, tight and hugging my curves. It was like being naked while dressed. The black hue let me blend in with the night, become one with the darkness when it enveloped Orlando, Florida. Home of that famous mouse and… Hell. Well, a tiny bit of it, anyway.

Right now, the clothing moved with me while I flipped from the bar, ass over head, and around again until I landed in a protective crouch in front of the asshole who began the violence. Thelacs had never heard of sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me. They tended to simply focus on the sticks and stones half of the saying. I faced off against the warrior, bat still gripped in one hand.

“Aw, Caith…” The warrior pulled his punch and I ducked, his fist missing me by a hairsbreadth. The scent of his charred skin filled my nose. The males must have been training inside Mount St. Helens again. There was a reason true thelac warriors were darker than night. There was no better place to train than in the bowels of an active volcano. At least, in their opinion. So, while they sweated to the oldies, they were burned to a crisp.

Still facing the warrior, I straightened once the danger slipped past and met the demon’s red-eyed gaze. “Don’t Aw, Caith me, Drek. This is my bar and you and your friends are tearing it to shit because some pretty-boy punk troll is an idiot.”

Said troll must not have liked being referred to as a punk. Though it could have been the “idiot” portion of my comment.

The shift of air, a delicate wind brushing my back in a caress, alerted me of his movement. I spun on the ball of my foot, stepping to the side and shifting my weight as I twirled around to crack him on the back of the head with my bat. Wood splintered on connection, showering the bar floor.

Which… was why I really wanted a metal one.

I dropped what remained of my weapon with a frown and poked out my lower lip. I’d had him the longest of all my bats. Three whole days. “Sorry, Louis.”

“Heads up!” I didn’t take my gaze from the now unconscious troll but raised my hand over my head, fingers uncurled. Another hunk of wood flipped through the air to land in my palm. I so loved Jezebeth in a non-lesbian way.

One of Drek’s friends shuffled toward me, boot scraping the concrete as he eased forward. I swung, the world blurring with the rapid movement, and shoved the end of the wood against the stranger’s chest. “Don’t test me.”

He snorted, rolled his eyes and looked to his friends. They snickered along with him as the idiot took another step forward, pushing against my hold. I really hated baby warriors. “You had to bring the babies, huh, Drek?”

I readily admitted I wasn’t much to look at. At five-foot-four inches, I seemed short compared to half the beings that crossed my threshold. My curves made most doubt my strength, even though my frame hid rock solid muscle beneath my layer of jiggle. While I may have the face of a pixie and the hair of a goth chick who spent too much time dying her strands with Kool-Aid, I was the ultimate Hell’s spawn with a capital Bitch.

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Hell’s Gates

I’m Caith Morningstar: bar owner, leather wearer, shoe worshipper, werewolf, Orlando’s resident ass kicker and… Satan’s niece.

Orlando—land of that famous mouse—is on day three hundred sixty-two of my demon ban and life is… boring. Until a demon finds a way around my magical blockade with a new demonic drug. Now humans are getting high and disappearing while tweeners—magical beings that live in the land between On High and Hell—are grinding on my last, violent nerve. When my son is infected with the evil taint, I realize this demon has forgotten my rules: order, secrecy, discretion, and don’t screw with me or my stuff.

Bryony is mine. Orlando is mine. This dem’s head? It’s gonna be mine, too.

But, as much as I want to deal with this alone, I can’t. I have to face Samkiel—my fallen angel mate I lost to evil. On High has given him back some of his angelic mojo and I need his purifying hand to cleanse human souls, his help tracking down the local dealer, and him at my side when we locate the dem determined to get his claws into the mouse’s house.

I lost Sam once and survived. The question now is whether I can survive losing both of the men I love most?  Or rather, will the world survive?

Read an Excerpt

I stroked my new bat where it rested on its shelf beneath the bar. The pristine, polished wood was smooth beneath my palm and I traced the Louisville Slugger logo branded into the surface.  Just beneath that, I’d had my BFF Jezebeth add a little something extra for me with her magical mojo. Property of Hell’s Chapel along with my bar’s logo. I was gonna add my name, Caith Morningstar, but since the humans knew me as Caith Murray this time around, I had to stick with something generic. Blech.

Man, I remembered the good old days when a gal could keep the same name for a few centuries without a problem. Stupid digital-computer-age shit.

But bitching didn’t change the fact that I was sitting in Hell’s Chapel with a new bat and no one worthwhile to use it on.  Even worse? I’d had this one for nearly a week. A week. Unheard of. Maybe I was going soft.

I sighed and scanned the bar, hoping for some action but knowing there wasn’t going to be much.  A couple of punk-ass trolls were getting into an argument over a round of drinks to my left and it looked like they were being polite about it. For trolls anyway.

Same shit, different night with all of my regular tweens—peeps that lived between On High and Hell—filling the stools, along with a handful of strays that had wandered in off the streets.

Slow. Boring. Bored to the billionth degree.

It was what I’d wanted though, right?  I’d banished the dems—demons—from Orlando a year ago because of my asstastic family. Though, why I’d ever thought they’d be better than they were still escaped me. My uncle was the devil and my mother was his sister, so… yeah.

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Made in Hell

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Published: September 6, 2016
Length: Novel
Caith Morningstar #3

I’m Caith Morningstar: bar owner, leather wearer, shoe worshipper, werewolf, Orlando’s resident ass kicker and… Satan’s niece.

For the love of all that is unholy, I really thought the demons of the world were smarter than to screw with me. But they’re doing it. Again.  Catatonic people are being found across the city, all of them members of a new cult.  All the followers have to do is pray to their new goddess and all will be well… while she sucks the very life out of them. What makes it worse? The bitch involved my son in her schemes. Didn’t she learn what happens when someone touches what’s mine? I’ll be sure to show her.

Add in Uncle Luc’s arrival with his still pregnant baby momma along with a request to keep her safe, and my life is just awesome. (Total sarcasm.)

It isn’t long before I realize the “goddess” wants to destroy the world, and her ticket to the top is through the baby in the mommy-to-be’s belly.

Now I’m running, I’m killing, I’m saving the world, and I’m… trying to hang on to my angelic mate, Sam.  I’m pretty sure I’m going to fail at one of those. I just hope it’s not Sam.

Read an Excerpt

I tossed back a shot of demonic moonshine, enjoying the scorching burn of the alcohol sliding down my throat. I licked the rim of the glass, capturing the last drop, and then slammed it down on the table. A spider web of cracks slithered up the side. It wasn’t the first time I’d broken that glass, and it wouldn’t be the last by the time the night was through.

I called for a flick of hellfire, just teasing the first circle of Hell, and used it to smooth out those fractures.  The move also sent the last tiny bits of alcohol bursting into flames, sparks of black and red leaping into the air.

Bonus, the ritual gave me a chance to recover a little. The stuff made my head spin like nothing else—the demonic part of the moonshine was literal, not metaphorical. It was brewed in vats heated by the flames of Hell itself, tainted by a touch of sulfur, and then seasoned with the screams of the damned.  Tasty.

It would drive mortals crazy if the scent even teased their noses.

It’d kill them if they actually drank the stuff.

The creature sitting across the table wasn’t any more human than me. Eh, probably less. I was technically one-sixth human. But since that bit came from my sword swinging, immortalized holy warrior from the crusades daddy… I’m not really sure how “human” that part really is.

My drinking partner—opponent—was part dem and part vamp. Maybe even a little dragon on the side since he had that vertical slit in his eyes thing going on.  Okay, I wasn’t totally sure and I definitely didn’t care. Because regardless, he had the stamina of a demigod and there weren’t many who could drink him under the table.

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Hell Can Wait

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Published: July 1, 2017
Length: Novel
Caith Morningstar #4

I’m Caith Morningstar: bar owner, leather wearer, shoe worshipper, werewolf, Orlando’s resident ass kicker and… Satan’s niece.

The dead are rising in the land of that famous mouse and apparently, I’m the one who has to deal with the mess.  Forget movie night with my kid. I have to kill ghouls who have decided to make some new undead friends in the morgue.  Eh, killing things is easy. Generally. Oddly, these guys have glowing blue eyes and are way too good at butt kicking. Thankfully, I’m better. I manage to get rid of them, but one gets in a shot or two of his own, and now I’ve got a foot-long wound in my side that glows blue. Kinda like the ghoul.

Now the dick who made those ghouls is trying to turn me into his puppet, which so isn’t going to happen. My loved ones are trying to cure me, my angel mate is off on some super-secret mission for On High, and I’m stuck in bed “resting.” Not that I’m staying there.

I’d rather die than become anyone’s puppet, which might be my only option left. I just hope I can come back from the dead later.

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