Today I am so pleased to welcome Shea Balik to Joyfully Jay. Shea has come to talk to us about her latest release, Mating the Enemy. She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
Shea is sharing an interview with some of her characters…
Nerves assailed me as I traveled through time. It was a journey I had taken in the past but I was more like a vessel to chronicle the lives who were living through the Paranormal Wars three hundred years in the future. This time I was to meet the one person who had lived inside of me for years before I was able to put his story down on paper.
Aleksi Rykov, a man who had invaded my dreams with his visions of what the Gods had done in an effort to save the world.
It was one thing to have him, as well as his mate, Seth, talk to me in my head. It was another to actually have a conversation with them. Not sure what to expect, I stepped into the portal that would send me to their world. Not even the images they had given me to write about Stone Haven could have prepared me to see it in person.
Buildings seemed to grow right out of the trees of the surrounding forest. The only true clearing was the road that ran through the town. From the sky it would be impossible to discern the individual buildings, not that there were many. As the capital of the entire Alliance, Stone Haven was relatively small, then again, so were several other Alliance towns. Many lived there, but as shifters, who wanted the freedom of enjoying nature, they kept their homes removed from the center of town.
“Shea,” a deep voice called from the steps of Town Hall. “I’m glad you made it to our world safely.”
The imposing Aleksi Rykov walked toward me and even though he’d lived in my head, still does at times, I couldn’t deny the slight shiver of fear that coursed through me. Aleksi might be a good guy, but that didn’t change the fact that it was obvious he was lethal. Long limbs covered in massive amounts of muscle moved with the feline grace of his Siberian Tiger, as he approached.
When his hand reached for mine, I had to admit to being worried he would crush it. I don’t know why, but I was surprised to feel the power he naturally emitted, yet he was careful not to grip my hand too tightly. Aleksi had lived within me for so long, I should have known he would never harm me, yet it was a challenge to remember that with him towering over me, even if he was smiling down at me.
“Thank you, Aleksi. I appreciate you doing this interview with me.” I felt awkward talking to him as I usually never spoke with my characters. They talked to me, insistently, not the other way around.
“Please, call me Alek.” Then he motioned an arm toward Town Hall. “Seth is waiting inside if you’d like to follow me.”
The interview would be with both of them, so I climbed the steps and entered the building. Following Alek to his office, I smiled warmly when Seth instantly came up to me and gave me a hug.
“Shea, it’s so good of you to come.” Seth stepped back and I couldn’t help but notice the way he gravitated to Alek’s side and leaned into him as Alek put an arm around him. It was as if they were born to be together, which, I guess, they had been since they were fated mates.
“Would you like to have a seat?” Alek gestured to the sitting area. The coffee table held plates of food and drinks.
“We weren’t quite sure what you’d want, so we put out a variety,” Seth said with a smile. “I remember you liked bagels when you were writing our story.” Sure enough there were my favorite, cinnamon and raisin.
Touched that they would remember something like that, I instantly felt more comfortable. “Thank you. That is really sweet.”
Putting one of the bagels on a plate, I also poured myself a glass of water. Once they had their own plates, or plate, since Seth sat on Alek’s lap and they shared from one plate, I said. “Since I only have a limited time before I have to leave, I’d like to get started.”
When they both nodded, I took out my tablet with my list of questions and got started.
Shea: I’d like to start with you, Alek. What made you decide to free your fellow paranormals when the humans had them locked up in labs?
Alek: Tension had Alek’s body stiffening as if the topic still pissed the man off. I couldn’t leave them in those horrible places being tortured. I only regret it had taken me as long as it did to find enough shifters and mystics who were in hiding to help me mount an attack.
Shea: Hoping to diffuse a bit of the tension, I shifted to Seth. From the moment we met you in Mating the Enemy, you were running toward Alek. Do you think you always knew he was your mate?
Seth: The smile that beamed from him said it all. Definitely. Even as a teenager I was fascinated with the great Aleksi Rykov. Alek chuckled at the way Seth said that last part. The moment I knew I had to run from the Federation, everything within me screamed to find Alek. Psys don’t feel the mating pull as easily as Shifters and Mystics, but somehow, deep down, I knew.
Shea: That is so sweet. You two look extremely happy together.
Alek: His smile was as big as Seth’s as he looked at his mate with pure love in his eyes. We are. Not to say we don’t have our issues.
Seth: Chuckling. You can say that again.
Alek: But the making up is well worth the arguments.
The kiss they shared was so damn hot it had me squirming in my seat.
Shea: Clearing my throat, I quickly asked another question. Now that you know what the Federation is up to, how do you plan on stopping them?
Alek: His scowl was back, which matched his mate’s. I wish I knew. I mean, obviously we’ll do our best to find the labs and shut them down, but that is proving more difficult than I had imagined.
Seth: The leadership of the Federation, which I regret to say include my parents, are sneaky bastards who will stop at nothing to get what they want.
Shea: What is that?
Shea: That sent a shiver of fear through me. Do you think more paranormals will start to find their mates?
Alek: His scowl morphed into a smile. Actually, someone else has recently found their mate, but I think you already know that.
Shea: I did, since I’d already written the next book, but it never hurt to ask. Does having a mate help or hurt when fighting the Paranormal War?
Alek: Without question it helps. Don’t get me wrong, when Seth is in battle there are times the fear of him being hurt is all I can think of, but it also spurs me on to kill everyone who could harm him.
Seth: Leaning closer to Alek. I agree. I hate that the Psy would do anything to kill Alek. It terrifies me, especially since I know better than anyone what lengths they will go to in order to accomplish their goal. But, that said, having Alek by my side not only makes me fiercer in battle, but it has me trying to find a way to end this war.
Shea: Knowing my time in their world was coming to an end and wanting to end on a happier note, I changed topics. It is obvious you’re very happy together but is there anything about the other that irritates you?
Seth: Laughing outright. Alek feels it isn’t necessary to put his shoes by the door.
Alek: I still don’t see what difference it makes where they are.
Seth: Because most nights you leave them at the end of the bed and when I get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, I trip over them.
Alek: If you know they’re there, why don’t you turn on the light so you can see them?
Seth: Rolling his eyes. Because I’m trying to be considerate and not wake you up.
Alek: A lecherous grin appeared. I’d rather you woke me up, kot?hok. Alek nibbled along Seth’s neck as if I weren’t even in the room, telling me that was a cue to end this interview.
Shea: I stood so I could dash out the door if they kept it up. I might write about their sex lives, but they had become like family to me and I didn’t need to actually see them having sex. As much as I wish I could stay longer, I have to get going. Thank you for taking time to talk with me.
Seth: Got up from Alek’s lap even though it was obvious Alek was trying to keep him there. It was our pleasure. Please come back anytime.
The portal that brought me to this world opened up and I stepped into it. As I sit in my office mystified that I had actually met and spoken with Aleksi Rykov, I prayed to the writing gods to grant me another chance to see their world that has lived in my mind for years.
Siberian Tiger shifter, Aleksi Rykov, is amused to watch the enemy chasing one of their own, psy, Seth Tilton, until he realizes it’s his mate. Rescuing his mate isn’t difficult for the powerful Alpha but keeping his mate safe from the war raging between their races may be more difficult.
Seth is taking a chance running to the one man he knows can keep him safe, Aleksi. Seth knows the psy’s secrets and the psy will do anything to get him back but with Aleksi’s help Seth can help turn the tide of the war and uncover the horrible truth. The question is will Aleksi be willing to help the enemy?
Both sides are against their mating and doing their best to tear the two apart but Aleksi and Seth are determined to stay together against all odds. Can Aleksi and Seth manage to find happiness by mating the enemy?
- Amazon eBook: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0833DTMXT
- Audible Audio: https://www.audible.com/pd/B085ZTFQ9G
- Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0833DTMXT
- QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/book/mating-the-enemy/
Bestselling author of the Cedar Falls Series, Miracle Series, and Paranormal Wars Series, Shea Balik has always had a vivid imagination with stories running around in her head. Often her stories are taken from observations of other people with her own spin. Traveling is one of her favorite ways of fulfilling her passion of people watching. You never know, one day you may spark her imagination for her next book.
Whether at home or traveling she is usually in front of her computer writing or curled up with a good book. Find Shea at any of the links below!
- Author Website: https://www.sheabalik.com
- Author Facebook (Author Page): https://www.facebook.com/sheabalikpage/
- Author Twitter: https://twitter.com/BalikShea
- Author Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sheabalik/
- Author QueeRomance Ink: https://queeromaceink.com/author/sheabalik
- Author Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Shea-Balik/e/B00LX82KHE
Shae has brought $20 Amazon gift card to give away to one lucky reader on her tour. Follow the Rafflecopter below to enter.
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