Monday, 24 October 2011

Coffin Hop Begins: An Interview with Balthazar, Demon Bounty Hunter

It's official, the Coffin Hop Web Tour starts today!
As part of the Coffin Hop Web Tour, and in the spirit of Halloween, my demon character from the story Victorian Shadows (as seen in the ebook, Killers and Demons) has kindly consented to be interviewed.

Plus one lucky commentator will win a three ebook prize pack (via free Smashwords download coupons) of my books Once Upon a Dark and Eerie..., Killers and Demons, and Ruined City.
All you need to do for a chance to win is leave a comment!

Interview with Balthazar, Demon Bounty Hunter:

Welcome Balthazar. Could you tell us a little about yourself?

I would be delighted to regale your readers with a small sample of my life.
I am an ancient Hell-spawned demon living on Earth, engaged primarily in returning escaped fugitives to Hell where they belong. I occasionally do a few side jobs, such as soul reaping or corrupting innocents.
For enjoyment, I kill random people and read quality literature, or partake in a dinner of rare steak and a glass of fine red wine. I find very few creatures can live up to my standards, so I rarely socialize with you pitiable humans or my fellow, lesser demons.

Could you please describe your physical appearance for the readers?

In human form, I am tall and svelte, with dark eyes and straight black hair. I have a wicked smile and a lean build. I believe one should always look one’s best, and cut a dashing figure, so I don the latest styles, whatever the century. I prefer dressing in basic black, for the maximum intimidating effect. As a demon, I expect you would find me rather gruesome, all scales, fangs, claws and red eyes.

How did you end up as Hell’s bounty hunter?

The previous demon that held my position met an untimely end. It seems he was double-dealing favours to the escapees. When this was brought to the attention of the powers-that-be in Hell, he was removed from his post, in pieces. I was adroit enough to obtain his place.

There was a great deal of interest in Victorian Shadows, the story of your hunt of the thief Sally. Can you tell us a bit of the back-story?

No. I would prefer not to talk of that nasty, annoying woman. That little low-class waif gave me no end of trouble. If I could, I would roast her flesh over Hellfire on a spit.

Obviously some issues there, so on to the next question.  What would you consider your best feature?

There are so many, I would be hard-pressed to choose, but I suppose my exceptional intelligence would be my most astounding trait.

Interesting choice.  And what would be your worst feature?

I deem myself quite flawless, but some others have commented that I do have a temper. Personally I believe that’s an asset in my line of work.

Okay then.  Do you have any family?

I was one of several demons spawned by my father, but alas they were all killed in a rather nasty family feud. I personally dispatched six of them, and Father slaughtered the rest. Then I betrayed and murdered him, so I am now happily without family.

I can see how that might be preferable for you.  Do you have any hobbies?

I used to collect skulls, but I tired of that in the 1920’s. These days I tend to stick to hunting. There is a lovely array of humans living on the streets that make excellent prey.

Well, that's disturbing.  Are you afraid of anything?

My Master, the grand and feared ruler of Hell. But every denizen in Hell is afraid of Him.

You have lived a very long time. Care to relate any of your more exciting adventures?

My early life was spent mostly in Hell, and your readers might get a bit squeamish about my escapades there. I find humans don’t usually enjoy stories about brimstone, torture and damned souls. Your species is very odd that way.
After leaving Hell, I had many fascinating exploits. In between my duties as a bounty hunter, I have been a medieval assassin, worked for the Royal Court of Spain during the Inquisition, and I sailed the seas as a pirate. I enjoyed the pirate life; I once turned a double-crossing scoundrel of a shipmate into the ship’s figurehead. When the ship sunk in a storm a year later, he went down to the bottom with it. Such good memories.

Thank you Balthazar, for joining us today. Now I’ll leave the readers with a quick peek at your activities from Killers and Demons.

An excerpt of the story Victorian Shadows (from the book Killers and Demons):

He waited, hidden by familiar darkness. An hour had passed already, but he was patient. He sniffed the air and grinned. The unmistakable scent of his quarry wafted sweetly on the air.

Balthazar twisted the top of his cane, muscles tense, as footsteps grew closer. A shadow passed his vision, and in one strike he buried the knife housed in his cane deep in the back of a man. Balthazar stood quietly and watched his victim’s lifeblood slowly pool on the cobblestones.

He sighed. “Too easy. He didn’t even scream.”

Balthazar removed his knife, admiring the line of the steel. He brought the knife to his mouth.

“Now, to find out what I want.” He casually licked the blood off the blade, his tongue lapping every drop. As the warm liquid flowed down his throat, the memories of his victim slid into Balthazar’s mind, the blood feeding him the facts he needed.

Balthazar grinned. “I am coming for you, my darling Sally.”

He slid the knife into the cane and walked away, back into the night.

Now if you please, scroll way, way down to the end of my blog, find the Linky List, close your eyes, make a wish and click on a link to continue the Coffin Hop Web Tour.

You can also check out my side hop, a quiz about the TV show Supernatural, at my other blog, In the Spotlight.  


Julie Jansen said...

Happy Halloween and happy Coffin Hop! I love the interview with your character...a skull collector who's now more of a human hunter. Great excerpt as well! :)


A. F. Stewart said...

Thanks Julie, Balthazar does seem to be a favourite with my readers.

Anonymous said...

I like this demon, he's got class!
Excellent characeterization.
very interesting.
Happy Halloween, what great fun this blog hop is!

A. F. Stewart said...

Yes, Carole he is a classy demon. A bit ruthless too, but that's how I like my demons.
This blog hop is great fun.

Jessica Nelson said...

Wow, what a fantastic post for Coffin Hop! Substance AND great prizes! I love the demon interview idea. It lets readers know that yes, your books will be something they'd like to read, and probably talk about, too! Thank you!

A. F. Stewart said...

Thanks Jessica, the story Victorian Shadows was well received and readers said they wanted wanted more, so I obliged.

James F said...

What a great idea, to interview one of your characters, sorry, but I may have to steal that one! ;)

A. F. Stewart said...

Feel free, James, to pilfer.

Sheila Deeth said...

Delightfully disturbing, and of course he always looks his best!

A. F. Stewart said...

Delightfully disturbing is an excellent way to discribe him Sheila.

James Garcia Jr said...

Thanks for sharing, and for the great opportunity to win some of your work. I love the POV of the demon here. In fact, it began to get my writing juices flowing. Perhaps one day I, too, will attempt to shed some light from the other side of hell.
Very cool!


Erin O'Riordan said...

Victorian guttersnipes plus infernal demons is an irresistible combination.

Anonymous said...

Not exactly a modest fellow, your Balthazar!

Have a lively coffin hop!

A. F. Stewart said...

Thanks James, glad you liked the POV and good luck with the writing.

A. F. Stewart said...

You may be right Erin, Victorian Shadows was the story readers commented on most.

A. F. Stewart said...

No, Pat, modesty is definitely not one of Balthazar's personality traits.

Unknown said...

Love the interview and excerpt.

earthsbooknook at gmail dot com

A. F. Stewart said...

Thanks, Heather.

Anonymous said...

I adore the interview with Balthazar! Seems like my kind of demon. Happy Halloween and happy Coffin Hop!

A. F. Stewart said...

Thanks, Jason. I like him, too.

Shadow said...

Happy Halloween! Great post! Thanks for the awesome giveaway!

A. F. Stewart said...

Thanks and Happy Halloween back!

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