“Torn between darkness and light, can Rayne save mankind?”
Silent Screams Excerpt
The erratic pounding beneath her chest had her pulse racing. Her body felt strange. A static charge started at her head and worked its way down to her toes. In waves, it rolled back up her body and left the center of her back pulsating. “What the hell…?”
Bewildered, Rayne reached back under her shirt, and brushed her fingers over her dragon tattoo. She vividly remembered when she got it. It was years ago in Hong Kong. On that day, she was a little tipsy, and feeling mighty damn adventurous.
As she stroked her tatted flesh, it thumped against her fingers like a heartbeat. Weird!
In the thick of her confusion, something really freaky happened. Time slowed down. Rayne turned in a circle watching everything in motion drag to a sluggish pace. After that, everything went mute. She couldn’t hear the sounds of cars driving by, or the chatter of the people walking along the strip, who literally moved in slow motion as they sauntered by.
It was like being caught up in some bizarre dream.
A presence… She felt a presence that made her insides flutter. She’d felt this presence before, in her mind. Could it be him? Demetri? Had he actually found her?
Nervously, she clutched the end of her shirt and scanned the area for just a glimpse of him. No one stood out. No one even looked her way. Was he teasing her, or was her mind truly playing tricks on her? “That’s it, make me even crazier than I already am,” she muttered.
Along the side of the street, a cab pulled up next to her. The driver, a middle aged man with a cropped haircut and a broad smile, stepped out of the car. He trotted around the vehicle to where she stood and opened the back door. Sweeping his hand through the air, he gestured for her to enter.
Without asking any questions, she slid into the cab.
It was a quiet ten minute ride to the beach. Still smiling, the driver helped her out, and then waved for her to follow him.
Her Adidas’ rubber soles dug into the sand as they trudged along the deserted beach.
Off in the horizon, a pale pink tint from the moon beamed over the small waves in the ocean and highlighted the grains of sand. They sparkled under her appraisal like a trillion tiny diamonds in the spotlight.
The driver led her to a small gazebo near the shore. Sheer red curtains covered the openings. Through the transparent fabric a chaise lounge sat in the center of it. On the side, was a tall bucket filled with ice, chilling a large bottle. Probably wine. Long metal torches on either side of the shelter added to the glow already cast from the moon above.
“This is lovely, but why’d you bring me out…?” She turned to find the driver gone. “Ohh-kay, Houdini, where’d ya’ go?”
A gentle breeze blew ripples over the water and pushed the curtains back, as if to welcome her into the cozy enclosure.
Swallowing hard, she moved toward it.
A deep croon brushed the side of her neck. “Do you approve?”
Startled, she whirled around and tumbled backwards. The heel of her shoe dipped into a patch of soft sand and she lost her balance.
A pair of hands caught her by the arms. She was jerked upright and drawn against a hard masculine body. Her breath came out in shorts spurts as his arms circled her waist. “Oh God,” was all she could whimper.
Deathly afraid to look up into his face, she clutched the lapels of his jacket and squeezed her eyes shut. Panic picked at her nerves. Suddenly, she realized she was holding her breath.
Breathe, Rayne, breathe.
This was no dream, or vision. This was actually happening. He’s here! He’s really here!
The enticing scent that made her horny as all hell swirled around her in teasing ribbons of ecstasy. She couldn’t help but breathe him in with every inhale.
His long fingers slipped beneath her chin and tilted her face up to his. “At your request, I am here.”
She opened her eyes and her next breath got caught in her throat. Whoa!
Jet black, wavy hair draped his broad shoulders, and framed his porcelain face. Mid-high cheekbones and a narrow-bridged nose added to the perfection of his features. Accented by a fan of thick black lashes, bright, exotic eyes that shimmered like the ocean were fixed on her.
Plainly put, this man was crazy hawt, a real stunner. Never in her life had she seen a man, or woman, so incredibly beautiful. He was unreal. Just looking at him made every muscle in her body tingle, every nerve quiver and her lady needs increase. “Demetri?” she whispered, giving into the shudders darting up and down her spine.
His plush lips curved up into a sexy smirk, enhancing his beauty as he slowly removed her shades. “Hello, Angel.”
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“Worlds collide when a Nightwalker and Fae fall in love.”
A Kiss of Ashen Twilight Excerpt
At the sound of her name, she immediately turned to Jace. The look in his eyes and the subtle tremor of his hungry voice alerted her of what he really needed. Blood.
Right away she pulled her curly hair away to bare her neck to him.
“Take me,” she whispered. Her warm breath caressed his hot, broken skin.
“No, Ariya,” he said weakly. “I can’t take your life. I’ve never—”
I’ve never fed before without killing in the process.
She silenced him, leaning down to press her lips against his in a kiss. “I trust you,” she whispered into his mouth in a kiss.
I can’t chance it, Ariya, his words echoed in her mind.
Ariya remembered his words about the feed.
With the right person, it is highly pleasurable, but potentially deadly. It’s hard to put into words the heights of bliss one rises to as they are pushed to the edge of death. Unless they share the experience with me, apparently. Then they don’t survive at all.
She sensed him tense with her remembrance and a wash of fear fell over him at the risk. Despite it all, she couldn’t let him die here. She refused to stand by and lose another person. This was the only option, even if she had to force her blood in his mouth to help him stay alive.
His understanding was confirmed as she felt his cold, yet gentle, touch. His hand caressed her skin in reluctant movement as he reached out to cradle her head. Pulling her down to him, he entangled his fingers with her tight, curly locks and sharply sucked in a gulp of air before speaking.
“Ariya, please forgive me.” Jace gripped a handful of locks in a tight fist and opened his mouth to reveal his white, shiny fangs.
With a soft growl from deep within his throat, he sunk his teeth into the soft skin of her neck.
Pain shot throughout her body, mixing with waves of pleasure. Jace held onto her as he fed, taking with her blood not only energy to revive him, but her very essence that mixed with his own. It drained into him as he took more and more.
Ariya’s blood was on fire with a passion she had never felt before. Sensual pleasure shot straight to her core. She wanted more. She needed to have more of him.
Just when she thought her body was ready to explode, he released her and she fell back on the sandy ground with shallow breaths.
Jace’s hands curled into claws and his back arched as he released a loud thunderous roar. His body regenerated itself right before her eyes from a scalded, damaged figure to his youthful, pale handsome form. His breath slowed until he calmed as the night stilled around them. He didn’t waste another moment before rushing over to Ariya.
“Ariya—” He grabbed her arms and helped her sit up. Gently, he caressed the two puncture wounds he had made on her neck.
The pain dissipated under his touch and when Ariya brushed her finger over the tender area, she found it smooth, as if he had never fed. How did he do that?
“Jace?” she said, her voice weak even to her own ears.
“Yes, baby. It’s me.” He brushed his fingers against her hair, smiling as he gave a gentle laugh.
Sirens loomed in the distance and the spell between them had been broken.
“Looks like that’s our cue,” Rich said with a gruff edge to his tone.
Jace looked up at his Uncle watching them in silence. “Uncle, I know you don’t condone–”
Julian held up his hand, silencing Jace. “We’ll discuss this later. Come, you can rest at the Ashen Twilight House.”
Rich tapped Gael’s chest before gesturing to their waiting vehicles.
Gael nodded in response. “We need to clear out before the Mortal law enforcers show up with tons of questions.”
Car engines started up like a musical symphony followed by a succession of doors opening and closing. Jace scooped Ariya up into his arms and rushed over to a nearby limo where Rich held the back door open.
Jace froze as something dawned on him. “Your bike.”
Rich waved him away. “Uncle’s got it taken care of. Come on.”
Jace climbed in the back, settling across from Gael while he set Ariya down in the seat next to him. Rich tapped the top of the limo in short succession before climbing in to join them. As soon as he closed his door, the limo started on its way.
Ariya shifted position to rest on Jace’s chest as he embraced her. Wrapping her arms around his torso, she exhaled softly, finally feeling the weight of the night’s events slip away.
“She lived,” Rich said, smiling proudly.
Jace nodded. “That she did.”
“You know what this could mean?” Gael leaned forward, folding his hands while resting his elbows on his knees.
Jace didn’t respond and Ariya wondered what he was thinking after hearing Gael’s question. As he looked down to meet her gaze, realization struck him like the heat of the sun’s rays on his cold skin.
After tonight and the act they shared, Jace knew his immortal days had been changed forever.
Meet Rae Lori
Rae Lori is a multi-published award winning author and a geek girl at heart. Over a twenty year plus writing career, she has been published with various zines, journals and publishing companies and taught new writers the craft of novel writing in between her projects. She can usually be found with her head in the clouds daydreaming of her next story. That is, when she isn’t gaming or watching her fave movies with her fellow geekazoid husband (it’s time for another Aliens rewatch!), crocheting, or has her nose in a book.
Touch the Dark, available at your favorite ebook vendor!
Shanti expected pain, but her whole body hummed, like that glowing feeling after an orgasm. God, it had been so long since she’d felt that hum of electricity between her thighs. If only this feeling were from a man, but it wasn’t.
The last thing she remembered was the blue scorpion coming towards her, then pain in her leg. She’d heard that some predators sent endorphins into their prey as they ate them. If so, she wished she’d gotten stung to death a few months earlier so that she could’ve experienced this kind of release before laying down a chunk of her savings in search of a spiritual release in India. This feeling traveling through her body was the ultimate release.
Oh no, she groaned, she was dead.
That eight-legged freak had killed her.
All she’d been doing was looking for a sign from God. But she guessed God intended to talk to her face to face.
Shanti struggled to open her eyes. When they adjusted she saw the dark blanket of night disturbed only by the stars that poked through. She wondered where she was. That looked like the Big Dipper over there. Was she still on Earth? Maybe she was having an out of body experience?
But…no. It felt like she was still in her body.
The tingling in her leg continued. It radiated down to her toes and up through her spine. There was no pain. Instead it felt…good. Really good.
Her mind turned once more to the sweet release that hummed at the base of her spine. She gave into the need to press her thighs together. But the friction didn’t work. It only increased the pressure. And that wasn’t the only place she felt a delicious pressure.
It radiated up and down her leg. She also felt a pressure resting on head. When she tried to blink, she felt an obstruction on her brow. Her eyes flicked over to the side. A hooded figure loomed over her.
This must be the Angel of Death. Wasn’t that Saint Peter? But she was pretty sure Saint Peter didn’t wear a hood. Plus there were no shimmering wings.
Maybe it was Anubis, the Egyptian god of the Underworld. That was whom her father had expected to meet at the end.
Shanti had spent many nights wondering who greeted her parents at the end of their lives. Her parents subscribed to different religious systems from each other. Her father began his life praying to Jesus, then prostrating to Allah, and finally ended up following a cult that worshiped the ancient Egyptian gods. Her mother had been a different story, or rather the same continuous story. From birth to death, Shanti’s mother continued her lifelong devotion to Shiva. In life, her parents’ different beliefs didn’t interfere with their love. They had been the most accepting people she’d ever known.
Shanti had never subscribed to any particular religion. She’d gone through so many in her youth that they all melded together. She did know that there was a Creator. It was evident in every blade of grass, in the organic systems of all living creatures, in the perfection of the ecosystem.
That is, before humans began poking at it with a stick.
Shanti was surprised to find her easy acceptance of this next stage of her existence. She was health-conscious by birthright. She’d expected to live an active life as an octogenarian as the coach-potato adults and the handheld-device addicted youth in her community withered away after half a century. She’d wanted to be able to say ‘I told you so’ to everyone in her community who went against her and continued to pollute the waterways. She’d wanted to dance in front of them in her svelte yoga body as they all lay in hospital beds on dialysis. But they’d have the last laugh.
Thirty was too soon to go. But so far death was having its perks. For example, that building buzz of an orgasm.
She wanted to hold still and let the waves of pleasure consume her. But then they stopped. The pleasant pressure released from her leg, but not her forehead.
She looked down at her leg. The hooded being had removed his -or maybe her- hand. Shanti tried to peer into the darkness of the hood, but she could see no facial features. She saw no dog muzzle to indicate Anubis either.
“Am I going to heaven?” Shanti asked.
“To Nirvana?” She wracked her brain through all the religions her parents had introduced her to.
“Elysium? Shangri-La? Zion?”
Still no response.
“Well I can’t be going to Hell. Not with all the work I’ve done for the environment and animals.”
The hooded figure pushed his hood back, revealing his face and Shanti let out a blood-curdling scream.
She’d never thought the Creator was a being like her. She didn’t think such a craftsman had a huge ego to craft its highest being in its own likeness. Plus she believed in evolution, which told her that humans were not born first, neither were they naturally the highest on the food chain. Had it not been for a meteor, the dinosaurs would have eventually evolved to write the stories that would make up religious texts and humans would be worshiping a reptilian god.
It was a shock to see such a different being up close and personal.
The closest approximation Shanti could use to describe this being was that he looked like a depiction of the Buddha. Not the human prophet Siddhartha Gautama, who was an Indian human male. This being resembled the cone-headed Buddha depictions with nodes around his dome instead of hair. His skin was a pale shade of blue. His eyes were overlarge and without lashes.
When all the air left her lungs at the end of the scream, Shanti calmed down and caught her breath. As common sense returned, she guessed this all made logical sense. She was in India after all. It was only fitting that one of that culture’s idols serve as her guide into the afterlife.
The being held up his hand. Even his fingers were overlong. It took Shanti’s mind in a different direction, wondering if all of his limbs were long.
God, she was horny even in death.
The hooded figure stretched out his fingers to her as though he wanted her to take his hand. After a brief moment’s hesitation, Shanti placed her hand in his. The second their palms touched, warmth flooded her body.
Pictures flashed through her mind. She saw an Indian woman smiling at her, surrounded by other cone-headed males with big eyes. Blue men, purple men, green men. Then stars. So many stars. And planets. Planets of colors she’d never imagined.
Was this what she could expect after life on Earth? To travel amongst the stars?
Shanti blinked and refocused on the being before her. His lips hadn’t moved, but she got the sense that he was communicating with her.
“Would you like to see the stars?”
Shanti gasped. Her gasp was the only sound in the clearing. His lips still hadn’t moved. The words she’d heard in her head hadn’t really been words, more of an image of the stars in a sea of dark space and a sense of someone welcoming her into that space.
“I have not heard the language of the Earth for many years.” His large eyes probed hers. “My deepest apologies if you find this invasive.”
He went to withdraw his hands from her. Shanti clasped it back, tightly.
“No. Its fine,” she said. “It’s just -I’ve never experienced this before. Well of course I’ve never experienced this before. Unless there’s such a thing as past lives, which my mother believed in, but I’ve never been so sure. I don’t really know what I believe, which is crazy now that I sit here before you and you’re giving me a choice of what to do next with my soul.”
Shanti stopped her tirade and took a deep, cleansing breath. She stared up at his eyes. His deep, soulful eyes.
“Did you understand any of that?” Shanti asked. She waited to hear his response, but it sounded from within her, from somewhere deep within. It began in her gut and radiated to her head. She struggled to concentrate on his words, or were they his thoughts?
“I understand that my touch does not repulse you.”
His thumb rubbed the ridge of her hand. Shanti felt a thrill skitter up her arm. “I like the way you touch me,” she said.
A small smile ticked at the corner of his mouth. His lips were full. She wondered what they would feel like against her lips, her neck?
His hand moved to her neck.
Shanti’s eyes widened. “Oh god, are you reading all of my thoughts?”
He shook his head slowly, his eyes were still fastened to her neck. “I do not understand all of your words.”
His eyes traveled across her lips. Shanti felt the heat. She pulled the corner of her lower lip into her mouth.
His eyes locked on her mouth. “I can read your emotions, you desires, clearly.”
Shanti’s lips parted. His nostrils flared.
Oh God, was she seriously flirting with this…she didn’t know what he was.
“I am Eloheem.”
Shanti knew that word. It was the Hebrew word for angel. So this was it. She really was dead. She looked down at her leg. The wound was closed. Only a red spot remained, but the redness was fading fast before her eyes.
“I sense unease within you.”
Shanti turned back to him. But he was no longer looking at her eyes, lips, or neck.
“Does it still ache?” His hands went to her thigh. When his long fingers brushed her skin, Shanti shivered. That pleasure-filled pressure running to her core once more. Her eyes closed unbidden and a soft moan escaped her lips.
“I sense another ache in you.”
“Yes,” she moaned aloud.
The physical feel of his fingers combined with the mental invasion of his voice threatened to send Shanti over a cliff of pleasure.
“Tell me your name,” he whispered into her mind.
“Shanti.” This time the sound hit her ears.
Shanti opened her eyes. His large eyes roamed over her body leaving a trail of heat in its wake.
“If you come with me,” he said into her mind once more, “you will never ache again. I promise you…”
Shanti watched as his mouth opened. She saw his tongue, saw his teeth clench the second before he sounded out her name once more.
Shanti couldn’t form any words with her lips. Luckily she didn’t have to. He said he could read her emotions, her desires. What she felt was crystal clear. She reached for his hand once more. When their fingers clasped, Shanti knew her life, or whatever this existence now was, would be forever linked to this man, or whatever this being before her was.
Meet Author Ines Johnson
Ines writes books for strong women who suck at love. If you rocked out to the twisted triangle of Jem, Jericha, and Rio as a girl; if you were slayed by vampires with souls alongside Buffy; if you need your scandalous fix from Olivia Pope each week, then you’ll love her books!
Aside from being a writer, professional reader, and teacher, Ines is a very bad Buddhist. She sits in sangha each week, and while others are meditating and getting their zen on, she’s contemplating how to use the teachings to strengthen her plots and character motivations.
Ines lives outside Washington, DC with her two little sidekicks who are growing up way too fast.
Touch the Dark, available at your favorite ebook vendor!
While I perfect my special Halloween martini for my drunken Halloween night with my neighbors, I have several movies and shows that are a must-see every year.
This movie hypes me up every time I watch it and it never gets old. Private Hudson’s epic melt down will forever be one of my favorite scenes. I don’t know how many of you watch Phineas and Ferb on the Disney channel, (Sue me, I have kids) but during their recent Halloween special, one of the characters—Buford—reenacted Private Hudson’s melt down. I could not stop laughing. 😀
I AM LEGEND:
How could you not love the realistic freakiness of this film? A deadly pathogen created while scientists sought out a cure for cancer turns the test subjects into vampire/zombie-like hybrids. And that’s not all. The pathogen becomes airborne and turns the majority of the population into those creatures. One man, who is immune to the disease, (Will Smith) takes on the task of finding a cure, and he has to do it before the creatures get to him. This film will always be one of my faves.
This is considered a thriller, but it falls in the category of horror for me. This story is wrapped around one spirit’s need for old fashion revenge. Of course, the big mystery in the tale shrouds that underlying vengeance in a brilliant way. This story was well told, and at the end, it leaves you with the satisfying feeling for the one who sought the revenge, because they got it.
WHAT LIES BENEATH:
This one leaves me with chills. It’s yet another story about revenge, where the mystery in the plot clouds “what lies beneath.” << Hahaa, see what I did there? 😉 I’ve lost count on how many times I’ve seen this movie. The storyline was enthralling, but the last 30 minutes were gripping. I have an intense moment during those last 30 minutes every time I watch it. *shudders*
For some reason I’mma sucker for this film. It’s not a “Great” movie, per se, but I find myself watching it every time it airs on the movie stations. The gore, the zombies, the psychotic security system that takes the form of a little girl, and the kickass heroine… It’s an entertaining flick.
INTERVIEW WITH A VAMPIRE:
I was instantly drawn to this movie when it came out. First of all, the cast was phenomenal, which is one of the main reasons why this flick was so successful. ‘Til this day, Tom Cruise IS Lestat. He was so convincing in that role. In my opinion, it was one of his best performances. When I read the book, I saw his face as Lestat. That aside, this story was excellent. I thank Anne Rice for that.
WORLD WAR Z:
This movie freaked me the hell out, yet I keep watching it. Not only because it stars the handsome Brad Pitt, but because this film introduced a new kind of walking dead—zombies that could move fast as hell. They were leaping on people like frogs and creating huge zombie mountains to scale over incredibly high walls. It was crazy! If you got bit by one of these things, you would transform into a zeek within seconds. I admit, the ending was a little soft, but it’s still a really good film.
AMERICAN HORROR STORY (TV Show):
This is one of my binge watch shows. I used to watch it when it aired, but there are so many shows on my view list that I just don’t have the time watch them all. As twisted as this show is, it keeps you entertained. I couldn’t get enough of Angela Bassett last season. Aww man… She was flawless and dominated every time she was on the screen. She portrayed the deadly voodoo witch, Marie Laveau, like no other. I can’t believe she hasn’t gotten an award for that role. Honestly, she’s the reason I watch AHS. And she’ll be the reason I continue to watch.
THE WALKING DEAD (TV Show):
Oh my goodness, where do I start?! This show is easily one of my guilty pleasures. Though, I must admit I can’t binge on it like I do other shows. My heart can’t take the pressure. I have to watch one episode at a time. And at the end, I have to catch my breath, wait until my heart rate normalizes and then have a drink. I have invested my emotions in most of the characters on the show. It’s difficult not to because some of them are so loveable, like Daryl. Because my emotions are involved, I’m afraid for their lives. It shows the actors are doing a damn good job.
ATTACK ON TITAN (anime):
Another guilty pleasure for me! I’ve watched AOT Season 1 more times than I’d like to admit. This anime is so unique, gory and highly entertaining. What I like most about it is, it’s unpredictable and you never know who’s going to die. It’s like the Walking Dead in many ways, but in some cases you find yourself rooting for the giant zombie titan. Not all of them are mindless, and not all of them are slow. You just never know what you’re going to get. That’s what keeps me locked in.
Here are a few other shows and movies I like to watch in the spirit of Halloween. These are in no particular order.
Knights of Sidonia (anime)
Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust (anime movie)
Queen of the Damned
Penny Dreadful (TV Show)
Blue Exorcist (anime)
Death Note (anime)
Sleepy Hollow (TV Show)
War of the Worlds
What movies and/or shows do you find yourself watching for Halloween?
For those of you who are following my Halloween free read, I’ll post another chapter this week. I was supposed to post one this weekend, but my youngest samurai came down with a cold, so I didn’t get to do any writing. Never fear though, I promise not to leave you hanging for long. 😉
**Click on the image below to begin reading CRIMSON DAYS**
**WARNING: Not suitable for the faint of heart, prudes or those easily bothered by strong and vulgar language, graphic descriptions, urban dialect, blood-lusting hotties, kickass female warriors, sword-wielding bad asses, dark smutty sex and extreme violence.**
**dystopian sci-fi, paranormal, erotic and interracial romance**
By the time I got back to my concrete quarters, I wanted to do nothing but get naked and soak my body in a tub filled with rose scented water—if only to rid myself of the ghastly stench lingering on my threads and armor.
In addition to that, I needed wine in the worse way. It was the only substance that would help clear my mind of the last nine hours.
Our mission ran well into nightfall. Unfortunately, that’s when the demons gained strength. The knights had eliminated most of the vampires by then, but the ones who remained put up a major fight. It got bad. Many soldiers died. However, in the end, we prevailed at exterminating every last vampire that’d taken refuge in the sewers.
All those, except for the ones I smuggled out of the area.
I had a feeling the massacre today would only make the death walker situation worse. As soon as the word got around to the larger, stronger covens that the Cross Knights were on a demon-exterminating hunt, the vampires were liable to strike back, and strike back big.
From here on out, sleepless nights were a guarantee.
I lumbered into my weapon cache, peeling out of my armor and uniform as I went. After I’d stripped down to my panties and
sheer tank top, I set my daggers, glocks and rifles back on their rightful stands. Sometime tomorrow, I would make sure to give them a good cleaning, but until then… wine.
A knock at my front door jarred my attention. I stepped out of the room and stared at the panel blocking my sights from whoever stood outside my quarters. I glanced at the time. 11:57 PM. It was probably Sanjay, the last person I wanted to see at the moment. It took only a second to decide I wasn’t going to answer the door. I wasn’t in the mood for a booty call, or a cursing out about our disagreement today.
“Officer Winsort! Open the door,” Sanjay bellowed, thumping harder with each rap.
Oh hell, he called me officer with stern authority in his voice, which meant he wasn’t alone. Nine times out of ten, he hadn’t traveled with his original entourage, the knights who were privy to our twisted relationship.
I took a gander at the security screen. Four men stood behind Sanjay.
High ranking officials were with him tonight, and for good reason. I’d made some off-the-wall moves during our last mission. That meant a reprimand session was in order. I was supposed to report to the council two hours ago for that session. If I didn’t open the door, I could easily be court marshalled.
Too bad I don’t give a shit.
Rolling my eyes, I headed for the kitchen. I had a hankering for some vintage wine. I grabbed the big bottle at the back of the lower cabinet. Year 2054 screamed from the label in large script. “Perfect.”
As I rummaged through my drawer for the cork-popper, four beeps sounded in the living area, indicating my security code had been overwritten.
“Door opening,” the disembodied voice announced.
Sanjay’s approaching steps came down hard on the concrete floor. Accompanying steps followed his.
“The fact I didn’t answer the door means I don’t want to be bothered,” I murmured, pouring the scarlet liquid into a glass. “And by the way, I’m nowhere near decent, but I’m pretty sure you can see that.” With my wine in hand, I turned and offered a wry smile to the high ranking officials standing in my kitchen.
They were clad in their pristine uniforms with badges of honor pinned to their chests. The only one in armor was Sanjay.
Five sets of wide eyes roamed over my sparsely clothed body. By the way they gawked at me, one would think they’d never seen a half-naked woman before.
Sanjay’s face turned beet red as his jaw set hard.
I wondered what pissed him off more. The fact I didn’t open the door for him and his companions, or the fact his male colleagues were getting an eyeful of his girlfriend’s assets. The only fabric covering anything were my boy-cut panties. On the other hand, the sheer top did nothing to conceal my large breasts and hardened dark nipples.
“Well since you’re here…” I lowered into the seat at my small dining table and crossed my legs. “What can I do for you, officers?”
“I’m sorry, gentleman,” Sanjay gritted out through clenched teeth, glowering at me. “Would you please grant me a few minutes alone with Agent Winsort?” As soon as the knights were outside my quarters, out of earshot, he growled, “You wanna tell me what the fuck you’re doing.”
“Having a glass of wine. You want some? It’s vintage.”
He slammed his palm down on the table, making the glass hop and the wine slosh. “You know what I mean!”
“You came barging off into my spot, Sanjay. I’m in the comfort of my own quarters, so I can have on as little threads as I want. Is that what’s really bothering you?”
Pitching the bridge of his nose, he paced the perimeter of my small kitchen. “Goddammit, woman.” He grumbled a series of rapid curses under his breath in his native tongue, Arabic, before speaking again. “Why didn’t you report to your hearing?”
I quietly wiped the wine droplets off the table, leaving his question unanswered. You’d think they would at least give me a day to recuperate from today’s activities before harassing me about this mess.
Sanjay lowered to his knees. He removed his gloves and ran his calloused palms over the sides of my naked thighs. “Babe, you need to talk to me. The commanding officer’s son… his only son… is in a coma, due to the tranq dart you shot into his ass. And let’s not forget his jaw is broken in three places. What the hell happened out there?”
Silently, I stared at the swirling red wine as I stirred my finger the glass.
His grabbed my thighs in a biting grip, making me wince. “Alexis, please don’t do this to me. Tell me what happen.”
I took a sip of the wine and let the heavy silence weave between us a moment more before speaking. “Officer JR chased two hostiles into my zone. I cornered the area with laser cones to notify the other knights in the vicinity that I was sweeping those grounds. Once the vamps crossed those cones, they were mine to deal with. The other knights abided to my zone markers, but Officer JR clearly had other plans. Instead of returning to his post, he attacked me. I hit him in the jaw with the butt of my rifle. Twice. He wouldn’t stay down, so I popped him with a tranq. And that’s the end of my tale.”
Laughter hid behind Sanjay’s smiling lips. I knew there was a part of him that found this situation humorous. He was twisted like that. “You are so fucking crazy, woman. Did you have to shoot him in the ass?”
“He was on his hands and knees when I pulled the trigger, so his ass was the only thing I could see.”
Covering his mouth, his snickered. “Need I remind you those tranquilizers are specifically made to debilitate vampires, not humans? He may not wake up from that coma, or worse, he could die.”
I shrugged. “One less jerk face to deal with.”
Luckily for me, no one on the force liked JR. Sanjay hated his guts. The boy was a pompous son of a bitch, who thought he could be an outright asshole just because his daddy was the tribe’s chief. I’m sure no one’s complaining about his unconscious state. No one, but his father that is.
Sanjay pushed to his feet and clasped his hands behind his back. An austere expression wiped his smile away. “So now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, are you going to tell me why you were wielding a G-twelve tranquilizer rifle during a kill mission? Or, are you gonna just leave it up to me to piece it together?”
For a long moment I said nothing. I knew there was no hiding my actions any longer. Every kid who came into my zone got popped with a tranq. Most of them didn’t even try to run. Once they looked into my eyes, they completely submitted. It was like they knew I was there to save them.
I contacted the CRF before I started gathering vamp children. The CRF were quick to deploy pods to collect the live specimens. The military wasn’t in the habit of leaving anything alive for their research, so they were more than thrilled that I was willing to assist them. It wouldn’t be the first time, nor the last.
The pods were stealthy and fast, able to go undetected. Only problem was, they made a whizzing sound that was hard miss, which defeated the purpose of them being stealth vessels. Nevertheless, I’d hoped the battle kept my fellow knights occupied to buy me some time.
JR came along and almost ruined everything. When he caught me loading his prey into a pod, he came after me. I put him down before he could alert any of the other knights. Little good that did me. All the council had to do was watch the playback from the drones that patrolled the area and all my secret deeds would be exposed.
I knew that, but I didn’t care. Saving eighteen children was worth it. “I did what I thought was right. Not all of them are monsters, Sanjay. During their experiments, the CRF have proved—”
“Goddammit, Alexis… You just don’t get it, do you?” he growled. “You don’t work for the CRF! You work for the military! When your commanding officer gives you orders to exterminate with extreme prejudice then that’s what the fuck you do!” He fell silent, took a deep breath then cleared his throat. “As of now, you are on probation until the council decides otherwise.”
Probation? Didn’t sound too bad. “Great. I need a vacation from death dealing anyway.”
Sanjay shook his head and added, “You’ve also been put on permanent watch.” With that said, he spun around and left the kitchen.
“Wait… what?” I jumped up and raced after him. “What do you mean permanent watch?”
I entered my living room and scuttled to a halt when I came face to face with an android.
My heart thumped out of panic. “Oh hell no.”
A translucent gel-like substance coated its mechanical workings like flesh. The machine stood perfectly still, his hands by his sides, his creepy milky colored eyes locked on me. “Good evening, officer Winsort. How may I assist you?”
“As you can see, you’ve been issued an Assist Droid. You can thank Steve for that. He convinced the council you’ve been under a lot of stress due to this war. And your actions were out of character because of this. He also mentioned your declining health and that you’ve been hearing voices on the battlefield, which is why you’ve been granted leniency.”
Steve? Noo, not Steve. I would expect this betrayal from Sanjay, but not my homeboy.
I leveled a finger at the droid. “Get this thing out of here right now!”
Ignoring me, he continued. “You are scheduled to meet with Dr. Chambers every day at noon to assess your physical and mental health until the council deems you fit to return to service for the federation.”
Tears filled my eyes as my anger grew. “Sanjay, get this goddamn droid out of here!”
“I hate we have to do this, but you have to pay for the choices you’ve made. Look at this way, it could be much worse.” He held a signature pad out and said, “Place your hand here to show you understand and agree with these terms.”
“Fuck you!” I screamed, slapping the pad out of his hand. “That droid is not staying here.”
Sanjay stood there, staring at me in silence for a moment. I couldn’t read his expression. He seemed unmoved by the whole situation, but I knew this had to bother him just a little bit. The droid would monitor my every move, twenty-four seven. That meant no more alone time for us.
“You don’t have a choice, Officer Winsort. Neither do I,” he added with just a flash of sadness in his eyes. “I will be by periodically to check up on your unstable mental condition. That is all.”
He stepped out of my quarters, leaving me staring after him. “Unstable mental condition? So you’ve labeled me crazy, huh?” I muttered to the closed door, seconds after he’d walked out. “Okay. I’ll show you crazy.” I hurried to my weapon cache. “Put me on probation, label me crazy, but leave me with room full of weapons? Yeah, that’s smart.” I grabbed my sword, but thought better of it when I caught sight of the spiked bat sitting on its stand at the back of the room. “Oh yeah, that’s better.” I slapped the sword back on its holder and then claimed the metal bat. I marched back into the living room. “Open the door,” I commanded.
Still standing where I left it, the droid asked. “How may I help you, Officer Winsort?”
“Here, you could take this bat.” As soon as the partition slid completely open, I swung the weapon, hitting the android in the stomach.
His artificial body folded over as he flew out the entrance. He hit the wall in the corridor with a booming thud, sending cracks branching out along the surface.
“How maaaayyy I…” the machine whirred, slumping to his knees.
Part ways down the hallway, Sanjay and the officials spun around.
The droid tried get back onto his feet. “Offic-officer Winsort…”
I pounced on him, wielding the weighty metal bat. Screaming out with every swung, I landed blow after blow until sparks were flying, and scarlet motor oil was spouting all over the place. After many more hits, the android was an unrecognizable heap.
With their faces stuck in a state of shock, Sanjay and the others gaped at me.
Breathing heavily, I swiped my dreads back from my face. “How’s that for unstable mental condition?” As I took in their stunned expressions, I harped out in laughter. “You may want to tell the council to send another droid. This one seems to be broken.” Dragging the bat on the ground, I sashayed back into my quarters.
Before the door slid shut, I heard Sanjay gruffly announce to the high raking company, “Gentleman, my apologies… I will meet you back at headquarters. Apparently, I need to have another word with Officer Winsort addressing her conduct.”
**WARNING: Not suitable for the faint of heart, prudes or those easily bothered by strong and vulgar language, graphic descriptions, urban dialect, blood-lusting hotties, kickass female warriors, sword-wielding bad asses, dark smutty sex and extreme violence.**
**dystopian sci-fi, paranormal, erotic and interracial romance**
Piles of dead bodies covered the open field.
Stunned speechless, I watched my fellow knights systematically drag vampires from the sewer passageways and stake them to the ground, forcing them to suffer daylight. The trees in the area had been trimmed away so there would be nothing obstructing the sun’s deadly rays. There had to be more than a hundred dying demons spread out over the field, and more deceased ones heaped in piles along the perimeter.
As the sun baked their flesh, the seared skin peeled off, fluttered into the air and disintegrated into dust, creating the miasma that poisoned the atmosphere.
Some creatures clawed and fought to stay underground. Those who put up a fight swiftly met their end, by means of a silver blade or UV bullets. Men, women and children alike, festered away in screaming pain.
Several knights approached the demons with large mallets and machetes. Heads were severed or smashed into bloody messes.
Lifting his mallet in the air, a bulky knight stood over a young pale-faced boy.
The boy screamed at the top of his lungs. “No! Please…!” He looked my way and reached out for me. “Please, help me!”
The pain in his eyes tore at my heart. I’d never seen a child vamp before.
His fangs were small, though I’m sure they were no less lethal. Beneath an expression stricken with fear, his face was a picture of pure innocence. Drawn into the dark life against his will, he would never grow up, or have his first kiss. Where he lay, staked to the earth, was his death bed.
I took a step forward, just as the knight brought the mallet down on his face, crushing his skull, cutting his piercing cry short. I gasped and sucked back tears.
Without the least bit of remorse on his face, the soldier moved onto the next vampire, who unfortunately was also a child. It wasn’t bad enough they were frying them in the daylight sun, they had to bash their heads in too.
“Get a fire going!” one of the knights from the other squads hollered out. “The bodies are piling up. Let’s burn these sonsabitches.”
The sickening sensation in my belly grew, almost to the point where I wanted to vomit. “Who are the monsters here? Them or us?”
The knights near me whipped their eyes in my direction. My question also garnered the attention of the commanding officer, Commander Cannon.
He wore a permanent scowl, one that tarnished his otherwise handsome features. His bright golden eyes narrowed. “Are you opposed to this mission, Officer Winsort?”
I didn’t answer. I just held his golden glare, doing my best not to let my razor tongue fly.
“Knights, your orders are clear,” he said in a demanding tone, directing his words to the whole squad. “There are hundreds of hostiles hiding out in those sewers. They have burrowed deep within. As you can see, the first squadrons called to the site are in the process of extracting the hostiles closer to the surface. Your job is to enter the underground maze, hunt them down and exterminate with extreme prejudice. Any target that makes it pass this squadron will meet the knights above and be taken care of. Those are your orders. They are to be carried out before nightfall.” With his directive lingering in the air, he pivoted on his heels in a robotic motion and marched over to where the other head officers convened.
I never liked that man. In his presence, I got the major hibbie jibbies. There’s something off about him, something not quite… human.
My fellow knights rushed off to fulfill their duty, but I couldn’t move. I was rooted to the patch of bloody dirt I stood on. Hunting vampires who attacked me was one thing, but going after them like this… women and children, people I know… “This isn’t right.”
At my side, Steve tugged on my hand. “Alex…?”
“I’m not doing this.”
“Alex, we have to follow orders.”
“This is a monstrous act, a massacre.” I snatched my hand away from him and shook my head. “I’m not doing this shit,” I voiced a little louder.
Sanjay was several feet from me, heading toward the sewers with the others, but when he heard me, he spun around. “What’d you say?” Before I knew it, he was in my face. “Tell me I did not just hear you refuse to carry out a direct order.”
“You heard right. I’m going back to the ship.” I turned to walk away.
Sanjay grabbed my arm in a biting grip. “Alexis…”
In a flash, I had my hand wrapped around my gat with the barrel pressed into his stomach.
A smirk curved his plush lips as his dark eyes glimmered in amusement. “You’re gonna shoot me, babe? Your superior officer?”
“If you don’t get your goddamn hand off of me, I just might.”
Seconds of fraught silence hovered between us before he said, “You know what? I don’t get you.”
“Really? What’s new?” I countered snidely.
“You kill vampires on a daily basis, skillfully, without batting an eyelash, but this is a problem for you.”
“This is not what I signed on for. I’m not about to start slaughtering children.”
“They’re not children, Alexis. They’re demons.”
“You’re the demon!” I shot back on a hiss. “And if I cross this line with you, I’ll be a demon too.”
The smirk drifted from his lips and gave way to a teeth clenching frown. “If you back out on this, you’ll have to answer to the commanding officer, and I won’t be able to protect you.”
I jerked my arm from his clutches. “You and the commanding officer can kiss my ass. I refuse to let you strip me of my humanity.”
For the first time, Sanjay glared down at me with hate-driven anger in his eyes. I’d only seen him offer vampires that look. “Then that’s going to pose a big fucking problem for you.”
“Uhhhmmm, let’s take a deep breath, guys, and try a different approach.” Facing Sanjay, Steve sidled in between us to push us apart. “I have a solution for this problem that you may want to hear. We can run a perimeter sweep.”
Eyes still locked on mine, Sanjay muttered, “What?”
“Some of the vamps are liable to pass this point. Like earlier. With me and Alex running the perimeter we can make sure none of them flee into nearby town to infect more people.” Steve shot a glance over his shoulder at me. “Good idea? Right, Alex?”
I clucked my tongue, whirled on my heels and stalked away from them. “Whateva.”
Still clutching my pistol, I trekked deeper into the forest, away from the carnage and the light. There were shadows all around me, cast by the large trees and their branches. The haze from the dead vamps loomed in the area and thickened around my feet, yet I continued to move forward.
Steve lumbered behind me, quietly.
I appreciated his silence, but it didn’t help calm the rage boiling within me. “Children, Steve… Children! What the hell have we become?”
“I know. It’s fucked up,” Steve said, keeping his distance. “Try to cool off, ma. You can’t have another run in like that with your superior officer, even if he’s your boyfriend.”
No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t clear my mind of the horrific actions I’d witnessed. I saw the mallet slamming down onto the child’s head over and over again, like a motion picture on playback. His eyes bulged, his blood and brain matter splattered over the ground, his skull crushed…
My eyes stung, my chest tightened. It was a devastating vision, one I wouldn’t soon forget.
I stopped and lifted my head. Suddenly, I had that feeling again—the feeling like I was being watched, and it wasn’t by Steve. I heard soft breathing close to me, like someone was standing right beside me, but no one was there, aside from the looming darkness. The presence…
“Lexi,” whispered a haunting voice from the shadows.
An icy chill darted down my spine.
“Lexi, please don’t be sad.”
Something brushed across my cheek. Leveling my gat, I swung around.
Caught in my gun’s path, Steve jumped back and threw his hands in the air. “Hey-hey now! Take your anger out on the vamps and your man, but not me.”
“Did you hear that?”
“Hear what?” Brow quirked, Steve reached over his shoulder and grabbed his sword’s hilt. “I don’t sense anything.”
If the bloodhound didn’t pick up on a threat in the area, then I had to be spazzing out over nothing. Right? If so, why couldn’t I shake this feeling?
“Why am I the only one feeling this and hearing voices?” I grumbled frustratingly.
“Sure it’s not in your head?”
I cut a glare at him.
He shrugged. “Just sayin’, nothing gets past my senses. Nothing.”
Whipping my sights from the left to right, I eyed the roaming patches of darkness that seemed to gradually close in around me. “I could’ve sworn I heard someone call out to me, and… and touch my face.” I took a shuffling step backwards. “Earlier, there was this presence—” The ground suddenly fell out from under my feet.
Steve lunged forward and caught my hand before the earth could swallow me whole.
“What the hell…?” I regained my footing as I stared down at the fog covered crater in the ground. “What is this?” It was hard to make out.
“Looks like a hole. A big one. Let’s see how deep it is.” Steve plucked a radar sphere from his holster.
The device leapt from his palm, fell the short distance then hovered over the indention. It sprouted blue laser-like beams, making it look like a miniature disco ball. Once the rays were done whipping about, it let out three beeps.
He read the results registering across the screen on the forearm of his armor. “This hole is almost eight feet long and four feet deep with claw marks etched in the dirt. Looks we found ourselves a fresh grave.”
So not all the vampires sought refuge in the underground sewers. Smart move. “Not a surprise. This is the perfect spot, a lot of shading, very little light. Wonder how many more we’ll find out here.” I couldn’t stop myself from peering around cautiously. I wanted to believe I’d been hearing things earlier, but I had a gut feeling I wasn’t.
“Good thing I suggested a sweep, ay.” Steve slid his fingers across the screen on his forearm. “I’m deploying a few droids to assist us. I think we should move this sweep further out…”
“Lexi…” The ghostly whispers echoed across my mind like a sweet caress, blotting out Steve’s voice. “Leeexi.”
I shook my head and pulled my mask off. The tainted air immediately assaulted me, making me want to gag.
“Alex, you hear me?” Steve asked.
“Yeah—yeah, you said something about deploying droids,” I muttered absentmindedly. With my thoughts drifting a million miles away, I headed for the ship.
“Where are you going?”
“To get my tranq rifle. Any kid vamps come across this area, I’m putting them to sleep and then turning them over to the CRF.” At least the Cross Research Facility wouldn’t kill them, but study them instead. Rather that, than getting baked in the sun and getting their heads bashed in.
“Ahh hell, Alex,” he groaned. “You shouldn’t have told me that. Now I’m an accomplice to your treasonous plan.”
The phantom voice… He called me Lexi. Why Lexi? There was only one man who addressed me by that nickname, and he disappeared well over ten years ago.
“Please don’t let it be him,” I whispered as I moved deeper into the shadows.
It’s the day before Halloween, which makes this the perfect time to drop a spooky teaser. This one is from Shifting Darkness, an extended tale from The Dragon Queen Series.
An unseen war is brewing in the shadowy underworld of London. Dr. Faith Miller, a local pathologist, is exposed to the horrific reality when she stumbles upon her brother consuming the flesh of his lover.
Tajaé Zhang, the second in command of the UK based black panther pack of the Chalvaiz clan, and his fellow shifters have been systematically exterminating the walking corpses—zombies, in an attempt to control the rapidly spreading demon virus.
Secretly, he has observed Faith from afar for months. His attraction for her has grown into an untamable love. After she’s bitten and infected with the virus, Tajaé defies the laws of the shifter packs and puts his life on the line to save hers.
Something crashed in Jamie’s room. A scream followed.
Halfway down the hall, Faith froze. Should I ignore it? Normally she would, but that didn’t sound like a cry of passion. “Everything alright in there, freaks?” She stood in front of the door, her hand curled around the knob. She didn’t turn it right away though. “Jamie?” Muffled shrills were the only response she got.
Fear raked down her spine and settled in the pit of her stomach. Something wasn’t right here.
“I’m gonna count to ten, then I’m coming in.” She turned the knob and pushed the door open. “Ten.”
The putrid scent assailed her. It was much worse than it had been at the hospital.
Her lungs tightened and a retching cough wracked her body. “Oh, God… ew…” Either the scent of sex had changed and no one told her, or there was a dead body somewhere in this room.
I want to take this time to thank the readers for making SILENT SCREAMSa bestseller at All Romance Ebooks! It warms my heart that the readers enjoy the tales I spin. It’s because of you I continue to write. 😀
Unable to focus on anything but the scent of the aroused blood bags in his bed, he rolled onto his stomach and pushed up on all fours. More blood.More… His vision was blurry. However, his other senses were keen. He could hear them calling to him, moaning his name, seductively taunting him.
Demetri ran hands along the silk sheets, until his fingers brushed a foot. He grabbed the woman’s ankle and dragged her across the bed. Her playful shriek invigorated him.
On her stomach, the woman, drew up onto her knees. She bowed her back, hiked her bottom in the air, and spread her thighs, her manner to offer her pussy for the taking.
Oh my… If he were in a calmer state of mind, he’d take the time to enjoy the lovely image of eroticism she presented. This was the same position Sharayna displayed to him in her moment of untamed desire. Growling in need for his dark angel’s essence, he palmed the woman’s backside. He drew in a deep inhale of her wanting sex and shoved the full length of his cock into her inviting sheath.
Her scream held such sweet ecstasy.
The scene wavered in the back of his mind as if it were a mere hallucination. Yet, he knew this moment, as well as this woman, was real. His vision clouded, his fangs lengthened.
That’s when something became very clear. Their blood was tainted with an alien substance. I’ve been poisoned. The realization came to him too late, and was useless now. The monster had taken a hold of him and its only desire was to be fed.
Fisting the woman’s hair, he plunged his engorged member in and out of her body with no tenderness, no emotion, and certainly no mercy. Her shrill cries bounced off the walls, and rippled the water surrounding his bed.
Desperate for a release that was lost to him, he yanked the woman up against him and sunk his elongated fangs deep into her jugular.
Her blood was a little sweeter than the others, pussy a little tighter. She was corrupt and utterly delicious.
He drew from her, slowly, savoring her thick, vital elixir, bucking feverishly into her gushing slit. Her screams drowned out the pounding in his head.
Her life was fading, but he couldn’t stop heaving into her body, devouring her spirit. The sliver of sin in her soul had him locked onto her, digging into the very core of her life force. Demonic madness!
From behind, another woman embraced him and pressed her full breasts into his back. Her body was hot, scorching his cold demon flesh. “Don’t forget about me,” she cooed into his ear.
He released the frail soul in his clutches and teleported her before he could claim her life. Dipping his head back, he roared. He despised this uncontainable sensation, this need to fuck and feed on anything with a pulse.
Goddamned this inner demon!
He exhaled a harsh breath as he attempted to steady his mind, and gain control of himself, even if it was futile. He reached behind him, grabbed the delightfully scented woman by her neck and threw her on her back. “More blood,” he groaned.
“I got plenty for you right here, baby.”
He shook away the cloudiness and gazed deeply into a pair of enticing, chocolate colored eyes.
This one was a pure blood shifter, and she was not the least bit frightened of what he intended to do to her.
No fear? He felt inclined to change that.
As his eyes wandered over her soft honey toned flesh, he dug his fingers into her dreads. The course tresses massaged his hand, pulling a chuckle out of him. It felt nice. With her hair fisted in his grip, he rammed his cock into her pussy, grinding their groins together on impact.
She latched onto his shoulders and braced against him, clenching her teeth, growling, refusing to gift him with the high-pitched song that stroked his demon’s desires.
“Oh you will scream for me.” Intently watching her, he surged into her sopping, wet channel, listening to the flow of her blood. Her plump, round globes bounced to the pace of his unrelenting thrusts. The second her body bowed and her mouth stretched wide to sing that song he oh so adored, he struck, claiming her throat in animalistic passion.
Fear revealed itself and coated her blood as it gushed into his mouth and down his throat.
I bare my throat as she cradles me in her lap, soothing me with her sweet words of death. Yes, she will kill me… kill me in the thralls of dark passion. I’ll willingly surrender it all to her, my blood, my soul, my life… For all eternity she will be my master and I will be her slave.
“Keep your head down,” he whispered. “Don’t look her in the eyes.” With a delicate hand on her hip, Jon urged her forward. “Walk toward that door.”
“I don’t think this is going to work,” Linah murmured.
“It will if you do as you’re told.”
Nervousness snaked down her spine. She trembled. “You said she could sense Hunters. If that’s true, we’ll die on sight.”
“Demons can only sense your true nature if you look them in their eyes, so keep your eyes on the damn floor,” he growled through clenched teeth as they approached a door.
“But, this doesn’t feel right…”
“It took me a long time to find her. Don’t fuck this up.”
Something was suddenly off about him. He was so sweet and gentle up to this point.
She reached out and turned the knob. Soothing music reached her ears. Nina Simone.
Linah glanced up to take in her surroundings.
A bar was across the room. A woman with a smooth bronze complexion and streaked crimson hair sat on the barstool, her legs crossed. She sung softly along with Nina Simone as she grazed her fingers across the two long swords resting in her lap.
“Using a human as your pawn?” The woman chuckled. “Now that’s playing dirty.”
“Whatever it takes to make you mine, Dragon Queen,” Jon hissed, his voice deep and demonic. “Consider this girl one of my many gifts to you, your highness.”
“Nah, I’d rather have you instead.”
Out of no where a rush of wind doused her then Linah found herself face to face with the woman. Linah stood frozen in time, unable to move, as her scarlet eyes pierced her soul. The swords shot around Linah’s sides.
Behind her, Jon cried out and fell against her, causing her to stumble forward into the woman. Warm liquid splashed across Linah’s back then Jon’s body melted to the floor.
When the woman pulled back, her swords were dripping in some strange looking black liquid. As she smiled and ran her tongue across the blade, stealing a taste of the dark colored substance, silver fangs gleamed beneath her lips.
“Oh Linah, Linah, Linah… You gotta stay away from handsome strangers with bright green eyes, girlie. They’re full of lies and death.”