“Conscience isn’t something all people are born with…”
Gabriel Church is a portrait in contrast. It would be easy to get lost in his pale-blue eyes, ache with the need to feel the strength of his masculine frame. He appears to be nothing but animal and instinct. The only people who know the full depth of that truth are dead, murdered, or two thousand miles away.
Gabe is a serial killer. For the first time in his life, he has more on his mind than his own survival. This time he is running from Seattle to protect the only person he thinks innocent in his laundry list of crime and murder: Christian Maxwell, his biographer and unexpected lover. Drawn to a place he never thought to return, Gabe finds new and different realities. Realities that insist he let go of his tragic past, those incredible perceptions of God, and his own divinity. He must open his eyes to what the love of a good man can do to heal a broken soul.
But when the killer is confronted by his own willingness to love and sacrifice, he is forced to ultimately ask the question: Just how far will he go to save a life . . . when all he’s ever done is take them?
Describe his body build, skin tone, height and weight. Include any unique features such as dimples, freckles, or scars: Toned and big, sexy and dangerous.
Who is the significant other in your main character’s life?
Tell us about this character.
Christian is an attractive and educated man, very erudite and currently in his mid-thirties. He is living as a closeted gay man when our story begins, but finds himself desperate to connect with someone who can break him out of his destined routine.
How does your hero dress?
Gabriel Church is the anti-hero of the series and dresses rough and casual. It is his body that attracts not the denims and flannel and tee-shirts he is accustomed to wearing.
If you could only hear this character’s voice (but not see him) what characteristic would identify him?
Church is a dichotomy because he appears red-neck illiterate from the outside, but in truth has his deep profound thoughts and belief-structure. His voice is masculine without being wordy, but his control is always sensed and displayed by the few sentences he blurts out. His speech illustrates a subtle wisdom with a serious knife-like edge, because after-all, he has seen and done it all during his lifetime.
How educated is this character?
Gabe is street smart but even with his high school education he shows he is envious of Christian’s brain and intellect. He considers the man an enigma and struggles with the knowledge that his life could have turned out very differently had he been given the same chances at a college education. One that Christian has taken for granted.
Is the character book-smart, self-taught, widely-experienced?
Christian as a protagonist is trained and educated with a background that gives him the leg-up over his peers, where Church is self-taught and possesses than skill of reading people and sizing up his competition.
Does he scrape by, live comfortably, live extravagantly?
Gabriel survived only by his wits, and in a place where a bed with clean sheets is considered a luxury.
What is your character’s viewpoint on wealth?
Christian Maxwell was raised with financial comfort and due to his degree always assumed his life would run according to plan. He is the exact opposite of Gabriel Church who has never known wealth and comfort but sees the futility in such pursuits, namely because he has seen the others he has killed die without fanfare and without their protection of wealth or reputation. The rat-race of others, as Church has called it, it something fragile and easily destroyed in his perception. He holds no interest in obtaining any financial freedom, nor does he expect to ever find it.
On what special skills does your character rely?
Gabe relies on his ability to read others and spot their weaknesses; it may be why he is so fascinated with Chris Maxwell, his polar opposite. Christian doesn’t seem to possess that skill at all, and this creates a symbiotic relationship of Gabe wanting to protect his lover from the dangers he sees so clearly.
Are any of his skills a source of pride or embarrassment, and if so, which ones and why?
If you were to ask Church that question in private he would easily say it was his ability to fuck, and fuck well. He would smile his twisted grin and flash his pearly whites, but in truth the reality was that he considered himself a survivor, regardless of the odds. He lives his life without assistance, makes no apologies and is very much the man’s man, counts only on his own abilities to get from point A to point B.
What is your character’s family like?
Church has a dismal past and walked away from his family long ago. Whereas Christian loves his family but doesn’t seem to express pride in them or their accomplishments. Both men have slipped from the confines of family, but for very different reasons and with very different outcomes.
Is he close to family?
Christian is close to his family, but can go weeks without speaking to them. Church has not spoken to anyone in his family since he left as a young adult. But for him in particular, the ghosts of his childhood haunt him more regularly than he would care to admit.
Does this character see morality as black-and-white, or with shades of gray?
Church can only see in shades of gray. His beliefs seem rigid and morally unyielding, but he is plagued by every decision he makes. Those decisions become questionable only after meeting someone new that he forms a connection with, though he can’t fully fathom that at the time.
How do others perceive your character based upon looks, and is this assumption accurate?
Gabriel is a sexy man with a strong physique, and while others see him as one to objectify he is truly gifted with an ability to cut through the minutia of day to day existence. Heterosexual males may perceive him to be ignorant because of his size and attire, but he has a sharp mind and a deadly accuracy with killing when he chooses too. Women and gay males see him as a sexual being tantalizing them into lusty thoughts. In that aspect their perceptions are correct, but only Christian gives him enough credit for being more than a murderer, or someone worth saving.
Does your character care about what others assume about him?
He doesn’t give a damn how others see him, but he cares that Christian knows him for something more.
If someone from your character’s past showed up, who would he most NOT want it to be, and why?
Easily that would be his younger sister who he abandoned alongside his mother and father when he left the rural sticks of his hometown. He regretted that most of all and that he couldn’t remain close to her, considering her collateral damage in his reach for freedom from his past.
Can your hero keep a secret (why or why not)?
For Gabriel Church, his life is a long line of secrets, he has been tight-lipped since he was a child but felt a unfamiliar wash of needing to unburden himself, but only after meeting a writer who agreed to pen his novel and explain his deadly actions to the world stage.
What secrets does your character know about people around him that he does NOT share?
He saw lust in Christian’s eyes from the very beginning and recognized the man had his own sexual secrets he’d yet to open too. Church understands lust and regularly uses it to his advantage. He knew Chris wanted him from the second their eyes met across the table and he toyed with him like a cat ping-ponging a half-dead mouse between its paws, and all for its own sadistic enjoyment.
What inner doubt causes your character the most difficulty?
His growing belief that every decision he made to kill was wrong, and would prevent him from attaining a life he never thought he wanted until meeting Christian. He only questioned his faith after many long conversations with the writer and seeing the incredulous look in his eyes.
What past event causes your character the most fear?
That the choices he made for his own life would somehow affect someone he’d grown to love. Church left his family, partially to spare them from himself, but he never assumed that additional murders would drag Christian down and swallow him in the undertow as well.
What is your character’s biggest need at the beginning of the story?
To be heard, to have left some mark in the pages of a novel he wanted written about his life.
What is your hero’s biggest hopes and dreams?
Throughout the story Church finds how much he wants to make it someplace safe. To be able to rest for a time with Chris standing by his side and to be able to protect someone he has grown to love and respect. Despite his attempts to reach those goals, his actions to acquire that nirvana only slip through his grasp with all the unwanted heat from his murderous past making it an impossible to reach.
What would help your character face hardship and meet any challenge?
Not having to worry about Christian’s safety. If it were him and him alone, the task might be easy. He could just run and run fast and disappear amid the throng of nameless strangers surrounding him. But he has to consider another person for the first time since he drove out of Tennessee as a young man, and never looked back.
If your character could make any one thing happen, what would it be?
He wouldn’t admit it openly but he would have liked to have taken a different path and never listened to the voices in his head telling him to kill. He would have liked to have met someone like Christian and made a life for himself in that white-washed normalcy of everyday life.
What is your hero’s biggest personal flaw?
Church has many flaws, the greatest might be his bravado and confidence, but Christian has important flaws as well; namely his inability to walk away from such a dangerous figure as Gabriel Church.
When there is a setback, what doubt or flaw surfaces?
Chris allows his lover to make the decisions regarding his own personal safety. He knows he could be considered an accomplice to murder in the very least and may be wanted for questioning in the death of a young woman in Seattle. But it is a matter of trust for him and that faith is equally tested many times for him.
How does your character handle challenges?
Where Gabriel takes challenges head-on, Christian wavers with the morality issue and losing the only person he desires, regardless of his better sense of right and wrong.
What is your hero’s breaking point?
His misconception that he can run and by leaving protect Christian from getting swallowed down by his own crimes, he falsely believes he can simply forget the writer and equate him as the same collateral damage he thought appropriate for his mother and sister.
How does your character express disappointment?
Yes and sadness, though he tries hard to hide it.
How emotionally expressive is your character to others?
To most, Church is a stone cold killer, but he allows his façade to shatter while in Christian’s company and exposes his twisted ideologies and warped insights about God and life, and his place in this world.
When (if) he lies or is upset, what gives him away?
His pale, slate-blue eyes, they are the singularly most appealing feature of him and yet become a window that Christian sees inside and displays every weakness he possesses.
Who in his life has the power to hurt this character the most and why?
Church would say it would be God, because finding out he was wrong about his personal mission would be a devastating blow to him. It is those doubts that Christian brings into play by simply listening and without judgement. It is the first indication that Church may have been mistaken all along.
Gabriel Church answers questions about Rodd!
Molly: Why do you think your writer chose to write about you?
Gabriel: I think he likes the bad boys more than he’s willing to admit.
Molly: What do you wish your writer had not told others about you?
Gabriel: I wanted my story told, but he gave too much away, I don’t like that others can see all the shit I’ve done, particularly fucking a man.
Molly: What other character from your book do you think your writer should write a book about, and why?
Gabriel: My sister, he didn’t spend much time on her story, but then again I think he believed it might make me sad, but he’d be wrong.
Molly: Why do you think your writer loves to write?
Gabriel: I have a story, good as any others I suppose…
Molly: Is there anything you’d like to say to your writer?
Gabriel: Yeah, time to back the fuck off me. Write about someone else for a change!
Rodd lives in Dallas, TX at the moment but hails from the sticks of Oklahoma. Check out his web presence at RODDCLARK.COM. Interested in the M/M Mystery, Romance and Thriller genres but has a varied interest in many books. It has been written, that his writing has a very dark and distinctive voice with a need for deep exploration and analysis. His latest work is the Romance Thriller “Rubble and the Wreckage” and is currently working on the sequel which he hopes to have released in 2015.
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Rodd-Clark/e/B00KGDSYSQ/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1
Find More Information:
Driven Press: http://www.drivenpress.net/#!torn-and-frayed/gd32c