A vampire’s heart is not meant to beat this fast
, Book 7
Craig Lawton’s life is full. Filled with normal things like work as a video-game creator and financial investor, and not-so-normal things like two half-werewolf siblings and a vampire best friend.
He’s accustomed to being the only human in the room…until he attempts to help a desperate, newly made vampire in the throes of her first transformation.
Evie Pelowski is a woman alone. Left alone in a filthy alley to become a monster like the one that attacked her, unable to control the bloodlust surging through her veins. Now she’s done the unforgivable—turned her Good Samaritan into a monster just like her.
They must face the future while coming to grips with their new realities. But despite a strong bond ignited by blood and forged in the heat of sexual desire, despite Craig’s unshakeable determination to teach her to trust, Evie knows nothing she loves ever stays. Especially when the vampire who made her wants her back—and he’ll kill anyone who gets in his way.
Product WarningsThe transformative power of love collides with the bite of a vampire to create one heck of a love story. Mix in some smokin’ hot sex, some very nasty bad guys, a disgruntled family and an ancient vampire and you’ll be stretching your neck for a bite.
Copyright © 2014 N.J. Walters
All rights reserved — a Samhain Publishing, Ltd. publication
Foot traffic was getting lighter as the daytime crowd had all headed home and the evening patrons hadn’t come out yet. Craig didn’t mind. He enjoyed having the sidewalk almost all to himself. He could see the Haven sign in the distance and quickened his step. He was almost past the dark alleyway when he heard a whimper.
Craig stopped and went back a few steps, peering down the alley. The streetlights didn’t penetrate very far, making it difficult to see anything. “Anyone there?” It was probably nothing more than a stray cat or dog searching for scraps. It was an unfortunate fact that every city had a problem with stray animals.
He squinted, wishing not for the first time that he had the enhanced senses of his siblings. They’d had the same mother but different fathers, and Craig was fully human while his brother and sister were part werewolf. “Hello.”
He heard the whimpering sound again, but this time it sounded more human than animal. Cursing himself for a fool, he started down the alley. He really should go to Haven for help. Any one of the pack would come back with him to check this out. It was pure folly to go alone.
Still, he took another step into the darkness.
His eyes were adjusting a little better, but he couldn’t see where the noise was coming from. “I won’t hurt you,” he promised.
A skittering sound caught his attention. It was coming from the far side of the dumpster on the left side. “Who’s there?” He wished they’d say something.
Taking a deep breath, Craig inched carefully forward until he could see just beyond the dumpster. Curled up next to the nasty smelling metal was a small person. He couldn’t tell if it was a woman or a kid. It was too dark to see what the person was wearing or to make out any details. He squinted again and took a step forward. “Hey.”
A head came up and reddish-tinged eyes peered back at him. Crap. He was in big trouble. Whoever this person was, they were a paranormal creature of some kind. And if Craig was a betting man, he’d say she was a vampire, a young one, potentially unstable and very, very dangerous.
He backed up a step.
“Help me.” It was a woman’s voice and it stopped Craig in his tracks.
“What happened to you?” he asked.
She moaned and closed her eyes. “I don’t know what’s wrong with me.” She panted heavily and Craig could sense her distress.
He reached into his pocket for his phone. “I know someone who can help you.”
“No.” She came to her feet in one fluid motion and jumped at him.
Craig was thrown back several feet and smashed into the wall behind him. His head cracked against the brick and he saw stars. Something liquid trickled down his collar and he knew he was bleeding. Not good.
The creature came toward him. No, not a creature, a woman with long dark hair tangled around her face.
“Everything will be okay. I promise.” But Craig was no longer sure. He should have gone to Haven for help. Dealing with a vampire on his own, especially a young, unstable one wouldn’t be wise for a werewolf, let alone a human.
She licked her lips, grabbed him by the shoulders and dragged him into the shadows by the dumpster. She was incredibly strong.
“Let me help you.” Craig kept talking, trying to reach her human side before she was totally lost to the bloodlust. But it was too late.
Sharp fangs pierced his neck and strong arms held him. Not that he tried to pull away or struggle. That would only make her more determined to drain him dry, maybe even snap his neck. Physically, he was no match for her. Not yet. Maybe once she was drunk on his blood he could break away and make a run for it.
As she sucked his life’s blood out of him, Craig prayed she wouldn’t kill him. He wasn’t ready to die.
So good. He tasted like the finest chocolate and red wine. And she was hungry, so very hungry. She feasted on him, gorging herself until she was almost ill. Only then did she pull back and look down at him. Kind blue eyes stared back at her from behind wire-rimmed glasses. He was wheezing, his skin pale, but he made no move to fight her.
She frowned and studied him more closely. The gash on his neck caught her eye and she gasped. It looked as though an animal had taken a bite out of him.
What had she done?
It all came flooding back to her. The attack. The pain. The several days of agony. The hunger that tormented her constantly, driving her outside even when she knew it wasn’t safe for herself or anyone around her.
She was a monster. Just like the one who’d attacked her. And now she’d killed this man who’d only tried to help her. She could remember his voice, low and calm and filled with empathy.
She’d wanted to reach out to him but had panicked and attacked instead.
“What have I done?” Her voice sounded rusty. It had been days since she’d said more than a word or two. It had been difficult to form thoughts, let alone speak.