Today, I’m excited to have Damon Brock, the star of Kait Ballenger’s new novella, SHADOW HUNTER, on the blog today. Through this story, Ballenger introduces us to the tough supernatural world of Rochester, NY and the hunters that help keep us safe from the monsters that go bump in the night. These hunters are part of an elite organization, Execution Underground, and Damon is one of the best. I didn’t think I’d get him on the blog today — he’s the strong, silent type — but Ballenger managed to wrangle him into answering a few questions about supernaturals, his new team of hunters, and the words he lives by. His motto really should be a bumper sticker.
Please welcome Damon to the blog!
SWR: Welcome to the blog, Damon! Thanks for being here.
These interviews are necessary for the survival and success of the Execution Underground, or so my author says.
SWR: Can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you became a part of the Execution Underground?
I’m what the Execution Underground refers to as a legacy. I come from a long line of supernatural hunters. I knew from the time I was a child that once I turned eighteen, I was going to be recruited into the Execution Underground—and like my father, and his father before him, I would be vampire hunter.
SWR: The EU sounds like a powerful organization with an honorable mission but I can’t help but wonder…are there any good supernaturals out there, ones who mean no harm to humans?
There are certain supernatural creatures that are not harmful toward humans, and thus, are not hunted by the Execution Underground. An example: the Fae are a species of creature whose natural enemy is demons. Demons prey upon humans. The Fae are not hunted by the Execution Underground, because they eliminate demons, which are a threat to humanity. But benign supernatural creatures are uncommon. We only hunt supernaturals that are an immediate threat to humanity, like rogue werewolves killing humans, or supernaturals who are intrinsically evil, like vampires. There is no such thing as a good bloodsucker. They all feed on human blood. Creatures like werewolves and shapeshifters who don’t feed on human flesh by nature are only hunted when they step out of line, but they do so frequently. It’s in their animal instincts.
SWR: Also, why the heck aren’t there any female members?
The Execution Underground was founded centuries ago in a time where women were not considered capable of being hunters. The tradition has continued throughout the years. Personally, I have no qualms with the possibility of female hunters, but I don’t see the organization changing their ways any time soon.
SWR: Tiffany…she almost kicked your a**. This isn’t really a question per se but do you care to comment?
There’s no “almost” in hunting or battle. You either make the kill, win the fight, or you don’t. Nevertheless, I have no shame in being near bested by Tiffany. She was trained by my hunting partner, her older brother Mark, who was one of the best hunters the Execution Underground had to offer. Tiffany is an excellent fighter technically, but is no match for my strength. It’s difficult to fight a female when I don’t want to hurt them…especially Tiffany.
SWR: Is there ever an HEA for two people like yourselves who lead such dangerous lives?
I don’t believe in happily ever after’s.
SWR: Damon, what brought you to Rochester, NY? It’s a city that doesn’t seem like it would be supernatural central.
I came to Rochester to avenge the death of my friend and fellow hunter, Mark Solow. Previous data showed that there wasn’t enough supernatural activity in Rochester to warrant a division, but after I arrived in the city we found supernaturals had migrated to the area. A division was needed, so I was mandated to start one.
SWR: Tell us about your new EU team. Who are they and what can we expect from each of them?
I’ve hired five new hunters to complete the division. A werewolf hunter named Jace McCannon, who is a royal pain in my ass. Jace rarely follows orders, smokes like a chimney, drinks like a fish, and speaks with the vocabulary of twenty drunken sailors, but he gets the job done, so I keep him around. A Jewish demon hunter and exorcist named David Aronowitz, who aside from being Jace’s right hand man keeps in line, follows orders well, and does his job, but is a bit of a smartass. Dr. Shane Grey, occult specialist and professor from the University of Rochester, who mainly monitors the witch covens in the area, and assists with all the divisions technological needs. Ashley Devereaux, who goes by Ash is a slow speaking ghost a medium from Louisiana. Despite his issues, he’s excellent at his job. Lastly, Trent Garrison, a hunter who specializes in non-werewolf shapeshifters and is a perfect killing machine.
SWR: Anyone annoy you yet?
Hunters all have problems. It comes with the territory. Any time you get a large group of men together all of whom are headstrong and aggressive, there’s bound to be pissing contests. Jace is my only legitimate troublemaker.
SWR: Ok, here’s one for the ladies out there – questions that will help us get to know what Damon Brock likes:
I don’t have time for these sorts of activities now that I’m a hunter, but I’ll answer from what I liked when I was younger.
- Favorite book? American Psycho.
- Favorite quote? Don’t have one.
- Favorite band? Classical music is a guilty pleasure.
- Favorite movie? The Godfather 2.
SWR: Finally, I’m a Game of Thrones/Song of Ice and Fire fanatic. Every family has a motto. The Starks have “Winter is coming” and the Lannisters have “Hear me roar!” (or, more popularly, “A Lannister always pays his debts). What’s the Damon Brock motto?
Kill vamps first, ask questions later.
SWR: Thanks for speaking with SWR today. Be careful out there!
There’s no such thing as careful when hunting vampires…There’s always blood involved.
Check out Damon’s story in this month’s new release, AFTER DARK, coming out June 25th!
BACK COVER BLURB FOR SHADOW HUNTER:
Vampire hunter Damon Brock’s newest assignment with the Execution Underground is Rochester, New York, a city crawling with the undead. But he isn’t the only hunter in town gunning for vamp blood. Tiffany Solow is fierce and ruthless when it comes to slaying the monsters that destroyed her family-and she works solo. But being alone is no longer an option when she meets the mysterious hunter who wants more than just her turf. Forced to unite against the local covens, the line between good and evil blurs when they must decide between their lifelong beliefs…and their newfound desires.