Title – Never Trust A Vampire (Strange Allies novel series #1)
Author – Vivian Lane
Genre – Urban Fantasy
Publisher – Phantom Ridge, a Willowick Publishing imprint
The people we save look at us like we’re superheroes, or guardian angels, but we bleed. We break.
And sometimes, we even die. Becoming a paladin means sacrifice of self. Saving innocents is always top priority, so when the vampire Adam asks for Agent Seven's services to rescue children from L.A.’s reigning vampire, The Agency won't let her refuse. Company motto is the only good vampire is a dead one, so what makes this guy different from all the rest? This feels like a trap. Will Adam prove her wrong, or be her downfall?
This story is intended for readers over the age of 18 due to adult situations.
As the vamp sat down, I touched a fingertip to the skin above his collar. He froze. A puff of smoke started to rise from the contact.
“Outside. Now. Quietly,” I whispered, and walked out to the lobby. Oh, please let him follow me.
The figure that came out of the auditorium was unlike any vampire I’d dusted before, and that was a fair number. He was quite simply gorgeous. Dressed in casual business attire of gray and black, he looked like he’d walked out of a catalog. Everything was perfect, from his symmetrical face to the Italian leather loafers on his feet.
“I hope you have a good reason for bringing me out here, miss. The pianist has started to play.” He just had to have a nice voice, too, a cultured baritone.
“Really? You’re gonna play the inconvenienced music patron? We both know what you came for.”
A faint smile graced his lips. “And what is that?”
I waited for a passing usher to get out of earshot, then said, “I know you’re a vampire, and from that burn mark on your neck, you know what I am, too. Let’s leave the nice innocents be and take this outside.”
He stepped a bit closer, hands at his sides. Casual. “You have me all wrong, paladin. I came for the music by recommendation of a friend, and that’s all. I’m Adam. And you are?”
“Not givin’ you my name. You really want me to believe you didn’t come for a snack.”
He shrugged. “It’s the truth. Do you think I want blood on this shirt? It’s expensive.”
Okay, I didn’t have a comeback for that one.
“Look, sit next to me and babysit if you wish, but I’d rather not miss more of the performance than I have, so—” He turned to go back inside. I grabbed his arm—and ended up with my back to the wall. Couldn’t tell ya how, it was that fast. He held me pinned there by the shoulders, his leg between my feet. “Listen carefully, paladin. I will say this once. I am not your enemy unless you force me to be.”
With his face this close, I discovered his eyes were gray framed by enviably-long black lashes. But you never stare into a vampire’s eyes. “You’re all the enemy. Swear on a Bible you’ve never killed a human for food and I might believe you.”
Try for a comeback to that one, bub. He’d be left with a stump by the time he finished the oath, which is why what he did next shocked the hell out of me.
He gripped my cross pendant, his skin instantly sizzling. “I have never willingly killed a human for blood.” Then let go and went back in the auditorium, quick and silent.
White smoke wafted off my necklace.
He had me.
He had me dead to rights, and didn’t kill me. Didn’t compel me.
Didn’t blink when he made his profession.
He was a really good liar if it wasn’t the truth. I’d been trained to recognize tells.
This was crazy…”good” vampires were products of fiction.
One thing I did know, he was old and he was strong. I doubted I could take him with only the stake hidden in my boot.
Writer of supernatural badasses.
A proud geek * cough * nerd * cough * who likes fashion, interior design, and sports, Vivian Lane is the author of the Children of Ossiria and Strange Allies series. She lives in California with her cat Scrapper.
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