Read Undead and Done Online

Authors: MaryJanice Davidson

Undead and Done

Titles by MaryJanice Davidson

UNDEAD AND UNWED

UNDEAD AND UNEMPLOYED

UNDEAD AND UNAPPRECIATED

UNDEAD AND UNRETURNABLE

UNDEAD AND UNPOPULAR

UNDEAD AND UNEASY

UNDEAD AND UNWORTHY

UNDEAD AND UNWELCOME

UNDEAD AND UNFINISHED

UNDEAD AND UNDERMINED

UNDEAD AND UNSTABLE

UNDEAD AND UNSURE

UNDEAD AND UNWARY

UNDEAD AND UNFORGIVEN

UNDEAD AND DONE

DERIK'S BANE

WOLF AT THE DOOR

SLEEPING WITH THE FISHES

SWIMMING WITHOUT A NET

FISH OUT OF WATER

DEJA WHO

Titles by MaryJanice Davidson and Anthony Alongi

JENNIFER SCALES AND THE ANCIENT FURNACE

JENNIFER SCALES AND THE MESSENGER OF LIGHT

THE SILVER MOON ELM: A JENNIFER SCALES NOVEL

SERAPH OF SORROW: A JENNIFER SCALES NOVEL

RISE OF THE POISON MOON: A JENNIFER SCALES NOVEL

EVANGELINA: A JENNIFER SCALES NOVEL

Anthologies

CRAVINGS

(with Laurell K. Hamilton, Rebecca York, Eileen Wilks)

BITE

(with Laurell K. Hamilton, Charlaine Harris, Angela Knight, Vickie Taylor)

KICK ASS

(with Maggie Shayne, Angela Knight, Jacey Ford)

MEN AT WORK

(with Janelle Denison, Nina Bangs)

DEAD AND LOVING IT

SURF'S UP

(with Janelle Denison, Nina Bangs)

MYSTERIA

(with P. C. Cast, Gena Showalter, Susan Grant)

OVER THE MOON

(with Angela Knight, Virginia Kantra, Sunny)

DEMON'S DELIGHT

(with Emma Holly, Vickie Taylor, Catherine Spangler)

DEAD OVER HEELS

MYSTERIA LANE

(with P. C. Cast, Gena Showalter, Susan Grant)

MYSTERIA NIGHTS

(includes
Mysteria
and
Mysteria Lane
, with P. C. Cast, Susan Grant, Gena Showalter)

UNDERWATER LOVE

(includes
Sleeping with the Fishes
,
Swimming Without a Net
, and
Fish out of Water
)

DYING FOR YOU

UNDEAD AND
UNDERWATER

BERKLEY

An imprint of Penguin Random House LLC

375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014

Copyright © 2016 by MaryJanice Davidson

Penguin Random House supports copyright. Copyright fuels creativity, encourages diverse voices, promotes free speech, and creates a vibrant culture. Thank you for buying an authorized edition of this book and for complying with copyright laws by not reproducing, scanning, or distributing any part of it in any form without permission. You are supporting writers and allowing Penguin Random House to continue to publish books for every reader.

BERKLEY is a registered trademark and the B colophon is a trademark of Penguin Random House LLC.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Names: Davidson, MaryJanice, author.

Title: Undead and done / MaryJanice Davidson.

Description: First edition. | New York : Berkley, 2016. | Series: Undead/Queen Betsy ; 15

Identifiers: LCCN 2016025586 (print) | LCCN 2016025763 (ebook) | ISBN 9780425282946 (hardback) | ISBN 9780698407251 (ebook)

Subjects: LCSH: Taylor, Betsy (Fictitious character)—Fiction. | Vampires—Fiction. | Hell—Fiction. | BISAC: FICTION / Romance / Paranormal. | FICTION / Fantasy / Paranormal.

Classification: LCC PS3604.A949 U44 2016 (print) | LCC PS3604.A949 (ebook) | DDC 813/.6—dc23

LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2016025586

First Edition: October 2016

Cover design by Lesley Worrell and Katie Anderson

Cover illustration by Craig White

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

While the author has made every effort to provide accurate telephone numbers, Internet addresses, and other contact information at the time of publication, neither the publisher nor the author assumes any responsibility for errors, or for changes that occur after publication. Further, the publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party websites or their content.

Version_1

For Ethan and Cindy, who helped me go from the trailer park to the bestseller list. I know I've said this before, but hey—it bears repeating: you're the
greatest!

Contents

Author's Note

Well, here we are! The final book in the Undead series. When I started
Undead and Unwed
, I was neck-deep in an SDJ (stupid day job), working fifty hours a week while trying to write after the kids were in bed. Or during my lunch break. Or when I was supposed to be transcribing my boss's notes. (I wasn't a very good employee.)

Fast-forward: writing is my SDJ, which is really a WDJ (wonderful day job), and I've written a whole bunch of books and, even better, sold a bunch, too.
And
, since I work for myself, these days I'm a slightly less terrible employee. (My boss is the worst, though.)

I have no idea how this happened.

I'm not kidding. No clue. I've always written because I've always wanted to. I never gave it much thought beyond that. It's been my great good fortune to stumble across talented people who are great at their jobs, who love books as much if not more than I do, who thought I had a voice worth hearing and wanted to help me
punish
share it with the world.

Although I'm most known for the Undead series, after fifteen books it's time to take a break from that universe and explore new ones. I never wanted to be the writer who kept churning out books to pay for the pool house and, in the process, lost all regard for her characters.

That's not to say I'll never, ever write about Betsy and the gang. I foresee characters from the Undead universe showing up now and again in various novellas. I couldn't keep that bitch away even if I wanted to.

A few things worth noting . . .

The Mall of America is actually pretty great. (As I'm writing this, I'm about to leave to sign stock at the Barnes and Noble store, suck down a bowl of ramen at Masu Sushi & Robata, and maybe grab a Cinnabon, because my self-control is in shreds.) I don't think it's Hell on earth, except on Black Friday. And Blue Tuesday. It was just the best way for me to grasp an infinite space and make it relatable. If anything, Hell's more like Coachella or Comic Con . . . it's not as terrible as you feared, but you still can't leave until they let you go.

Everything Betsy says about
InStyle
magazine is true. Everything.

There really is a KARE 11 news channel, and as of this writing, Diana Pierce really anchors there. Wait, that doesn't sound right. Diana Pierce
is
an anchor there? That's probably better. Anyway, I've been on KARE 11 a few times, and they always invite me back regardless of their instincts. I always thought if Betsy had to do an interview, she'd go with a local she liked. So for the final book in the series, I couldn't resist pairing a real person with a fictional character.

For those of you whose Greek mythology is rusty (and I put myself on that list), the Augean stables were one of the twelve labors of Hercules. Once upon a time, the strongest alpha male on the planet went crazy and killed his kids and his wife (the Disney movie left that part out, though casting James Woods as Hades was inspired). So to make up for it (as if anything could), King Eurystheus set Hercules twelve
unbelievably difficult tasks. Like,
Wait, you're auditing my audit?
difficult.

One of these was mucking out the Augean stables, a job that wasn't just supposed to be almost impossible, but also humiliating—Hercules was the son of Zeus, king of the gods. Herc probably thought “stable boy” was never going to show up on his résumé. The horses weren't just healthy; they were immortal and never got sick. They sure did shit a lot, though, in the manner of healthy mammals everywhere.

Well, “dung scooper”
did
end up on his résumé. Along with lion tamer, hydra decapitator, hind stealer, boar grabber, snake wrangler, man-eating-bird catcher, bull rustler, mare catcher,
*
belt stealer, cattle herder, apple grabber, and three-headed-dog catcher.

Long story short, Hercules forced a river to flow through the Augean stables, doing all the dirty work for him, which was ruled as cheating, but that part isn't relevant to this book.

Oh, and the reason he went insane and killed his family in the first place? His stepmother
made
him insane. As in, it wasn't his fault at all. As in, Hera was an asshat! Why is the moral of most Greek myths “Family is the worst”?

The Saint Paul Hotel really exists and so does the fabulous Ordway Suite. For the purpose of this book, I gave it three bedrooms instead of two. If you get the chance, and can handle a second mortgage, it's well worth checking out. Parlor that seats eight, a kitchen, two bathrooms, amazing king-sized beds, a stocked wet bar, robes that feel like warm, fuzzy clouds, dark glossy wood all over the place . . . it's like
a penthouse suite decorated by George Washington's mom. The whole place just stinks of class. If you get the chance, check out the magnificence: www.saintpaulhotel.com/accommodations/ordway_suite/.

Bacon cookies exist! You can get the recipe here: www.myrecipes.com/recipe/bacon-cookies.

The Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument is worth seeing. I'm an amateur Civil War buff so I'm into it, but the place is fascinating if you're into what happened in the years after the war, or learning what too much pride can cost you, or how indigenous people shouldn't be fucked with, or if you just like to look at amazing countryside: www.nps.gov/libi/index.htm.

Port-a-cribs are wonderful. That is all.

There is some discussion of suicide in chapter twenty-three, when a character in Hell recalls how she killed herself. If you think this might be a trigger, please avoid. Also if you think vampires, zombies, grumpy mermaids, reminiscing about decapitation, betrayal, explosions, incontinent puppies, and far,
far
too much profanity might be a trigger, avoid chapters one, two, th— You know what? Just put the book back on the shelf.

Lutefisk is a traditional Nordic dish, and we got screwed. You know what other countries' traditional dishes are? Lasagna. Baklava
.
Fish and chips. Crêpes. Astonishing and delicious things designed solely to nourish and make you happy. Meanwhile, lutefisk is dried fish soaked in cold water, then lye (which, yes, is a poison), after which it's soaked in water again to make it edible. Because, a reminder: it was soaked in
poison
.

You know what isn't soaked in poison as a preparatory step to consumption? Lasagna. Fish and chips. Baklava.

I have eaten lutefisk.

Once.

If you're ever in Boston, put the Faneuil Hall Marketplace on your “Must See and Drool Over” list. It's the best food court ever, where you can buy a bagel and half a dozen raw oysters and sushi and pizza and a frappe and cookies and a salad, all to go, in the same place. This place is a miracle.

Smoothie Nation
is not a thing. But it damned well should be. Fortunately, blackberry Creamsicle smoothies
are
a thing. Pinterest, is there anything you can't
do?

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