For a Christmas treat, I am sharing an excerpt from Vampire King of New York.
In this excerpt, Evelyn is trying to get advice from her sister Laura and Laura’s husband David regarding King Max.
Evelyn sat down on the bed; her fingers flattened the bedspread. “I’m developing certain feelings for Max, and I’m afraid I’m giving into those feelings.”
David and Laura didn’t say anything but raised a brow at her expectantly. She sensed it. She was sensing a lot of things lately. Maybe Laura’s saliva was still in her system.
A burn of blush encompassed her body. She gazed up at her sister, purposely avoiding David’s eyes.
“When he kisses me, I almost faint.”
Laura’s mouth fell open.
“I think about him all the time. I told him I wasn’t ready for our relationship to go . . . And then all he has to do is touch me and, well, you saw when you came in before. All he has to do is enfold me in those warm, strong arms of his, and his desire becomes mine.”
Both their mouths dropped open.
“What is it? Some kind of vampire spell I’ve fallen under? Why is he warm to the touch, when vampires are cold? I know you guys are cold. I’ve hugged you on enough occasions.”
David and Laura looked at each other in such a way that Evelyn believed neither one wanted to answer her.
David sighed and threw up his hands. “You’re going to have to speak to Max about it. I’ll let him know you need to talk to him.” Both vampires were out of there quick as a flash.
Evelyn didn’t know whether to scream or cry. Frustration didn’t do justice to the anguish and confusion tearing at her. She got undressed and started the shower. Using the pounding water to dissolve her anger was an old method Evelyn resorted to whenever she was mad. This time she wasn’t angry, she was frightened. What had she gotten herself into?
Sudsing up, she traced the fragrant foam over her body. It offered soothing relief, until her thoughts drifted to Max. She closed her eyes. Soon it felt like his fingers teasing and making soapy circles around her breasts. Evelyn moaned. Catching her distorted reflection in the half-fogged glass, she broke down and sobbed. She could not bear the idea of another death in her life, especially if it was Max.
Climbing out of the shower, she put on her nightgown and robe. Evelyn slid back the sheets. Maybe her robe made it to the chair, maybe not. The sheets felt cold against her legs. She inched up the blanket. The truth was she was afraid to go back to her house in Connecticut. Evelyn was afraid of going back to an empty life.
Sleep was not always her friend. This time was different. She focused on Max and let her mind play out what would have happened if David hadn’t interrupted them. His touch. The heat of his lips on her skin. The gentle way he coaxed her thighs apart and kissed his way to her core. Evelyn whimpered in her sleep. She wanted more, needed more.
Groggily, she climbed out of bed. The alarm hadn’t gone off. That’s right, it was Sunday. She didn’t need to be up. Evelyn slipped on her blue robe and went out into the kitchen. She was about to open the refrigerator, when she spotted a light in the living room and went to investigate. A man was lying on the sofa holding open a map.
Every fiber in her body immediately went into hyperdrive. His presence was enough. She couldn’t be sure who exactly was on the couch, until he lowered the map revealing a familiar smile and a powerfully built chest. Evelyn pondered the effect of raking her fingernails over his musculature.
“Good morning, Evelyn. When I came back, you were sleeping, so I thought we’d talk this morning. Are you often up early?”
“No. I didn’t sleep well.” Walking over to the chair opposite him, Evelyn sat and folded her legs beneath her. Max, who reclined on the sofa, was barely covered by the crocheted flower afghan with the holes in all the right places.
“I’m sorry to hear that.”
“You don’t have to sleep on the sofa, Max. We have two guest rooms.”
“Both are currently occupied by Arnhem Knights. Besides I’d prefer not to sleep in a guest room.”
Evelyn blinked, her heart racing like a rabbit hearing a shot.
“David said you needed to speak with me.” He said it with such nonchalance, as if he had never mentioned his preference.
Evelyn shook her head. “I wish he hadn’t told you.” She avoided his gaze, but it didn’t matter. Her embarrassment bloomed in a burning flame on her cheek.
In a blur, he was sitting on the coffee table directly in front of her. All she could think about were his strong, sculpted biceps, the chiseled muscles of his chest. He was pale, which was to be expected, but the muscular definition of a warrior’s body made her dizzy. The fact that he was wearing blue silk boxers that showed an appreciable bulge wasn’t helping matters.
“Are you feeling better? Have you recovered completely from the poisoning?”
He grinned and took her hands in his. “I am fine. It’s going to take more than a little poison to get me. Of course, I am grateful your sister has that voodoo book. How did she come by it?”
“A friend from New Orleans sent it.”
“That has to be quite a friend to give such a book to a vampire.”
Evelyn started to stand but too late. Max had her in his arms and they were on the sofa, snuggled beneath the afghan. His lips went to her neck, and she stilled.
“Are you still afraid of me?”
She shook her head. When she faced him, they were only inches apart. “I know you won’t bite me, that you’ll keep your word.”
“Then what is it?” He lovingly stroked her hair.
“Max, I was badly hurt by a man I trusted. I’m not eager to jump into another relationship so soon.”
He kissed her but didn’t linger. Max leaned back and gazed into her eyes not to intrude but to silently tell her he cared. “I will wait for you, Evelyn. Just tell me what you need.”
She smiled, trembling, her fingers touching his hair, caressing his cheek. “Okay, this is going to be weird, but I need to know. What other ways can you die?”
He howled with laughter. “I’m sure it’s in that book of Laura’s.”
“I want to hear it from you. Besides the poison, how can someone kill an ancient?”
His smile faded into a straight line. “Well, I can be destroyed by beheading.”
“And a stake through the heart,” she added.
“No. Not a vampire of my age. I would simply pull it out and heal.”
“No. I would walk through it.”
“Is there anything else?”
“An ancient would only die from sunlight, if they lay out in it for two days. Even the night between would not save them.”
“Why would an ancient do that?”
He lifted the afghan over their heads, to make a little tent secluding them from the others. “A broken heart. Please, don’t break mine.” He kissed her, this time taking her without any restraint, his lips pressed firmly against hers with their white-hot heat. His tongue pushed her lips apart and invaded, stroking the inside of her mouth until she moaned.
Evelyn pushed him away. “You have the power to break my heart too.”
He gazed into her eyes then past that, into the essence of who she was.
Sighing, she moved her fingers through her hair as if the motion would help her think because this was a situation where she needed to think.
“I will never hurt you, the way Jack Beaumont did. I will never betray you. A true lifemate cannot betray their only love, my Evelyn.” He took her hand and placed it over his heart.
What will Max do next to convince her their love is the real? Vampire King of New York is available at Amazon in Kindle and Print! For those that buy the print book, they can get the the Matchbook Kindle version for 99 cents.
For those that enjoy contests, here they are!
The link for this contest in progress is: https://www.coffeetimeromance.com/formxp/index.php?fid=32
The next contest which is coming up fast is on Dec. 17-23 is at The Romance Studio.
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Susan Hanniford Crowley, Amazon Kindle Bestselling Author of Vampire Romance
Where love burns eternal and whispers in the dark!
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