BLOOD BY MOONLIGHT
I joined forces with Terri Garey and Jocelyn Drake to tell three original tales of romance beneath a Halloween moon, published by Avon…
In Terri Garey’s The Ghoul Next Door, a witch and a warlock battle it out for possession of a haunted house, but the ghost may have her own agenda . . . For more about Terri as well as an excerpt: click here!
Tempers flare and passions rise in Jocelynn Drake’s Of Monsters and Men as the local werewolf pack clashes with the Winter Court’s Wild Hunt . . .
And, in Trick or Treathen, I tell the tale of a master vampire who struggles to stay away from the mortal woman who enflames his very soul. Keep scrolling and you’ll find the first scene of the story, just for you!
AMAZON: Click Here!
BARNES & NOBLE: Click Here!
For more BLOOD BY MOONLIGHT fun, check out the game that Terri Garey designed just for our three novellas:
Excerpt from Trick or Treathen: Chapter One/Scene One
Trick or Treathen
Master vampire Treyne, of Prescott Territory in Arizona, awoke way too early from his day’s rest, a certain sign that something had gone wrong in his vampire commune.
He sat up and looked around. He extended his senses, something his master status had given him, an ability to feel what was happening elsewhere, even to know if another vampire or human was in his large suite of rooms. Had an outsider somehow gotten past his security and invaded his underground compound?
Yet his powerful hearing detected nothing, nor did the full scope of his senses detect another living creature in his suite. He was absolutely certain of both things.
So what the hell had awakened him?
Then, from a great distance, he caught a familiar scent, a woman’s scent, very delicate like a wild rose. He groaned. Still sitting up, he put his head in his hands. Was he to be tormented forever by this human female?
From the time he had first met Jenna Shawe, she had become a thorn in his side. He craved her and he craved her blood. He had become so lustful in his need of her that he’d taken to escorting her home the nights she worked at her shop. He wanted her in his bed, his body moving over her in powerful thrusts, his fangs striking her neck, then taking strong pulls from her vein until he was satisfied.
He’d even felt a desire to form a Treathen bond with her, a human-vampire bond that would join them forever, so long as they lived. But the Treathen bond, named after the first known woman to bond herself to a vampire, was something Treyne disapproved of. He believed in the ancient traditions which had always forbidden deep connections with humans.
However, in the past few years, since the time that the vampire world had made itself known to the numerous human governments of Earth, more and more Treathen bonds had been formed. He had several human women now living in his underground commune and one human male, all bonded. He didn’t approve, but apparently love had blossomed and the bonds had been forged.
He wasn’t like many masters who had thrown the vampires out of their communes. Instead, he’d reluctantly agreed to honor the bonds, as much as he disliked the situation. His duty first and foremost was to his vampires.
Now here he was having his own longings and his first true understanding as to why his vampires would risk being shunned, rather than give up the love of a human. Yet what kind of example would he set for his servants if he made Jenna a permanent part of his life?
Of course right now he had a more immediate concern, as in what to do about her now that she’d come to his commune. The problem was, his body knew exactly what to do, having no doubts at all. In fact, unless he could somehow find the strength to turn her away from his gates, he fully intended to bring her into his suite and bed her at long last.
He slipped from bed. He could feel the hour. Just four in the afternoon, which meant the sun was still at a death angle to his sensitive skin.
He sighed. He knew why she’d come. She wanted him to help her find her sister, Britt, who had disappeared from the annual Halloween rave almost a year ago. Treyne didn’t know for certain where Britt was, but he believed she was being held in Master Dagrith’s commune, since she’d last been seen with Dagrith at the rave.
The problem for Treyne was simple. He was bound by the traditions and the laws of his world not to interfere with, or in any way betray, the decisions and actions of another master vampire. These laws had been in existence for a very long time and had sustained peace among thousands of volatile communes for centuries.
Even though he wanted to help Jenna, he couldn’t.
He slid into his black leathers that laced up the front, then shrugged into his maroon silk shirt before combing his shoulder-length straight black hair.
He moved barefoot across his living room and entered a smaller room that housed his security setup. He tapped a few keys and brought up the front gate cameras, all well concealed from view.
And there she was, standing outside the gate, her gaze roving the tall black iron structure. What the hell was she doing? Was she actually looking for a way in?
She was very beautiful, with eyes nearly the color of amethysts. Her honey-blond hair trailed down her back in soft waves and curls. She was tall for a human at five-ten. Given that he was six-five, he knew she would fit him perfectly, and he’d imagined that fit a thousand times.
He trembled at the sight of her. Damn, his cravings burned like a brushfire through his veins. Her scent was stronger now, even at such a distance. And just like that, the Treathen bond emerged, like a swirl of mist around his body demanding that he do what he’d vowed never to do.
He took deep breaths and forced the bond back. At least this much he could do.
He peered closer at the screen. Sweet vampire gods, the woman had a gun in her hand. Jenna, an artisan by nature and by employment, had come armed? Did she actually think she could force him to betray his vampire world?
The part of him that was pure powerful vampire, with more ways to destroy vulnerable human flesh than she could imagine, took a moment to savor what he saw, and he actually smiled. Though he knew she’d trained at the local range over the past several months, she really didn’t know what she was dealing with when it came to his kind.
He typed in the code to the gate, which would disable the lock and allow Jenna to enter the courtyard. With nightfall still a couple of hours away, his guards would be stationed well inside the front door.
He picked up his phone and called the guards. “I want the woman to enter, but I want all the guards out of sight until I’ve apprehended her. Do you understand?”
“Master, the woman is armed.”
“Yes, I know. I have an interest in her.” Understatement. “Let her pass. I will come to her.”
“As you wish, master.”
He set the phone back on its cradle. Though he knew Jenna wanted to find her sister, did she really think she could break into his compound?
He put on his black leather boots, then picked up his iPad and accessed the security feed. Once he was linked up, he headed into the hall, levitated, then flew up the long, sloped pathway that led to the front entrance.
Glancing occasionally at the iPad, he smiled as he watched Jenna’s stealthy movements. She kept her knees bent as she walked through the courtyard, both hands supporting her weapon. He’d taken pains in building the entrance to his commune, using solid timbers and stonework so that the structure flowed into the boulder-laden hillside. Deep in the earth, his commune existed in miles of tunnels constructed within the mountainous terrain of Prescott.
He drew to a stop within the large foyer of the underground commune, to the left of the door. Looking at the iPad, he could see that Jenna was within a few yards of the double pair of massive front doors, just on the other side of the wall from him. She wore a long V-neck lavender sweater, dark blue jeans, and purple velvet flats. Not exactly SWAT-wear. She still held her gun in both hands.
He smiled. He liked that she was showing so much initiative, however misplaced. The woman didn’t lack for courage and she was determined. Unfortunately, she wouldn’t get what she wanted here.
Still, he meant to make the most of it.
He moved to the hallway, just out of sight, and set the iPad on a nearby shelf. He tapped the keyboard until he had a good view of the door. He watched it start to open.
Her scent was thick in his nose now and he was fully aroused. Welcome to vampire world.