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Authors: Sandra Sookoo

Courted by the Vampire

BOOK: Courted by the Vampire
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Courted by the Vampire

 

 

by

 

 

Sandra Sookoo

 

*****

 

Kindle Edition

 

*****

 

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales, is entirely coincidental.

 

All rights reserved. No portion of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means, including photocopying, recording or by any information retrieval and storage system without permission of the author.

 

Ebooks are
not
transferrable, either in whole or in part. As the purchaser or otherwise
lawful
recipient of this ebook, you have the right to enjoy the novel on your own computer or other device. Further distribution, copying, sharing, gifting or uploading is illegal and violates United States Copyright laws.

 

Pirating of ebooks is illegal. Criminal Copyright Infringement,
including
infringement without monetary gain, may be investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is punishable by up to five years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

 

COURTED BY THE VAMPIRE ©2014 by Sandra Sookoo

Published by New Independence Books and Sandra Sookoo

 

ISBN
-
9781311152244

 

Contact Information:

[email protected]

[email protected]

Visit me at sandrasookoo.com

 

Book Cover Design by David Sookoo

Illustration - Silhouette of a kissing couple on a decorative background.

©
Kirsty Pargeter|123rf.com

Illustration - Set of 5 vector Fairy silhouettes

©sorayashan|123rf.com

Illustration - Horror Night Background

©vectorshots |123rf.com

Publishing History

First Digital Edition, 2014

 

*****

 

Blurb

 

Fairies and ghosts and vampires, oh my! A trick of the mind or a new reality?

 

Hannah Weybourne doesn’t believe in things that go bump in the night. A reluctant empath who has tried to ignore her powers, she can’t help but wonder if they’re the reason when a hunky vampire enlists her aid. She’s got her work cut out for her trying to deny Edwin’s sex appeal as well as remaining hidden from the paranormal world.

 

Edwin Mason is a paranormal bounty hunter searching for a wayward vampire. His best-laid plans go awry when he meets stubborn Hannah and immediately recognizes her value to the Eight Realms. She’s the missing link needed to vanquish a power-hungry Demon Lord who’s on the rise. Though he’s got a job to do, Edwin’s thrown off guard when Hannah bewitches him with her sarcastic nature and her tempting curves. What’s one little bite between friends?

 

The unlikely duo runs into a sticky web of supernatural foes and dark deceit in their quest to protect the magic in the Eight Realms. So many riddles, so little time. Despite the danger on their tail and the Demon Lord in their sight, love blooms, and it’s not a normal courtship, but then, who needs normal anyway?

 

Note: this title was previously published in 2010 as The Art of Fang Shui but has since been re-edited.

 

*****

 

Excerpt

 

Hannah swallowed the lump in her throat and tried to concentrate on the area directly around her. She fumbled for her bag before it dawned on her that Edwin had taken it with him. She stepped backward. When an arm clutched her around the waist, her breath caught in her throat. Another hand covered her mouth to effectively stifle her scream.

“Quickly, come with me. Make no noise, make no sound, do nothing until I tell you it is prudent for you to do so.”

As Edwin’s voice rang in her ear, she nodded her acquiescence and relaxed somewhat. She was too frightened to enjoy the comfort of his closeness. He guided her through the underbrush to the cave, silent as the night itself.

“The shelter is not big, but it is currently unoccupied and fairly clean. Do not, under any circumstances, turn on your flashlight or do anything to provoke interest in your position.” His whispered voice brushed over her cheek, sending shivers of excitement down her spine that had nothing to do with their present situation. “Do you understand?”

Hannah nodded, acutely uneasy at the urgency in his voice. She shook off his hand. “Where are you going? I can feel something out there. Will you be in danger? Do you need my assistance? Can I—” Her flood of words broke off as Edwin claimed her lips. His dark, color-changing eyes flashed in the dim light of the moon. She stepped away then banged the back of her head smartly on the side of the rough cave. “Why did you...?”

“Stop talking.” He pressed a finger to her lips then leaned in close. “I may be away for a bit but do not worry. You will be protected here.”

“I demand to know where you’re going.” She clutched a fistful of his shirt, pleased when he paused.

“It would behoove you not to demand anything of me at this moment.” His eyes glittered with anger even as his voice purred in the stifling air.

She planted her hands on her hips and returned his glare. “And if you knew what’s good for you, you’d lose the attitude.”

For long moments, their eyes locked. Neither blinked. Finally, Edwin dropped his gaze. “A werewolf lurks outside our shelter. I will warn him away.”

“You’re going to fight, aren’t you?” Her pulse quickened.

Frustration prompted his sigh. “Blows will be exchanged, and no, you cannot watch.”

 

*****

 

Dedication

 

This book is for my friends on Facebook who clamored—rather loudly—for this book (and series) to be re-released. Here you go. Enjoy!

 

*****

 

Chapter One

 

 

“I searched the world for two years to find you.” The words came spoken in a clear voice with unrelenting authority behind them.

Ordinarily,
words such as those would have flashed a thrill or three down her spine, but Hannah knew better. In her convoluted life, she’d heard much stranger stuff.

She gaped at the man who lounged casually against the self-help
bookshelf. If tall, dark and handsome was an overdone cliché then she was face to face with the best-looking cliché she’d ever met. Actually, it was more like face to shoulder, but what did that matter? The man before her was serious eye candy. “Pardon me?” Hannah abandoned her task of rearranging bookshelves.

He stared at her with eyes the color of Alaskan glacier ice and just as cold.

“Are you sure you need to speak specifically with me? I mean, there are several clerks that work here. Perhaps you need to see one of them?” A curvy girl with an hourglass shape, Hannah struggled with the fact men could find her attractive. “Give me a name, and I’ll call them over.”

“I am not mistaken.” A curt nod followed the statement. “You are the one
I desire.”

A shiver danced down her back, even as her brain scrambled to follow his
stilted speech pattern. She hadn’t been the object of anyone’s desire for years. “Excuse me?” She glanced around the bookstore to see if they’d attracted undue attention but no one glanced their way. “I don’t understand what you mean.”

“You will come with me now.”

The man obviously wasn’t very well versed with the ability of small talk. That was unfortunate since conversation was a dead art form. “I’m sorry. My shift isn’t over.” She glanced at him again and frissons of electricity zipped through her at the sight of the shoulder-length black hair and dusky olive-hued skin. She sighed. “If you want to ask me out, I have to tell you, I’ll need way more information than what you’ve given me. At least chit-chat over a cup of coffee or something. I don’t even know you.”

“You will come with me now.” A long forefinger pointed in the direction
of the door to emphasize his repeated request.

She rolled her eyes and wiped her sweaty palms on her jeans.
I could be in trouble.
“Okay, I get it, you don’t date much.” Small talk was an overrated skill anyway. Since he was easy on the eyes, she’d rather look at him, except the troubled mask that marred his classic features seriously destroyed any fantasy she could concoct. She stepped past the frowning man then slipped behind
A Novel Idea’s
checkout counter to wait on a customer. Hannah wasn’t pleased to discover the shopper threw him an appreciative glance as well. A surge of unwarranted jealousy sloshed through her gut when the woman dropped her key ring in an obvious attempt to draw his attention.

“Have a good evening.” Hannah gave her last buyer of the evening a
cheery wave, a firm look and a smile, glad when the woman finally took the hint and left the store. She then focused her attention on the dark visitor. “I’m Hannah, by the way.” She frowned when he did nothing but stare at her, his gaze intense. “This would be the part where you tell me your name. It’s how civilized people converse.” If she’d hoped to draw him out, to ascertain the reason for his sudden appearance, she was destined for disappointment when he didn’t get the hint.

“My name is Edwin Mason, and I hunt paranormal beings for bounty.”

She swallowed. The dread she’d tried so hard to ignore all these years churned in her stomach. “Sorry, Edwin Mason, but welcoming the paranormal back into my life is not on my agenda at the moment—or ever.” Grabbing a stack of colorful yellow and green pamphlets, she flung them in his face and darted through the aisles of the bookstore. Once she gained the backroom, Hannah slammed the door. Her heart pounded as she snagged her bag from its hook and hurried out the street door, hoping the lock caught. A quick fumble in the purse brought her key ring into trembling fingers.

As she sprinted
across the darkened parking lot to her car, she risked a glance over her shoulder. No time for a sigh of relief when she didn’t spot the stranger. Instead, she scrambled into the vehicle while her lungs burned, turned the key and threw it into gear. Her tires squealed as she raced out of the parking lot.

Sure, leaving a potential stalker-burglar inside the store probably wasn’t
the best thing to do in the circumstances, but Hannah didn’t care. The need to get home overrode common sense. Still, she took a roundabout way to her apartment, in case he followed her. She careened into the nearest parking spot once there, yanked the keys from the ignition and bolted up the walkway to her door.

“Come on, come on
.” Her hand shook so badly the key wouldn’t slide into the lock. Finally, she shoved it home. She shut herself inside and secured all three locks, raced through the living room and checked the lock on the patio entry. With slightly less haste, she returned to the front door and leaned her back against it.

As long as she stayed inside and everyone else stayed out, she should be
fine.

 

*****

 

Twenty minutes later, her pulse had returned to normal level, but fear caused cold sweat to trickle down her spine. Was it possible they had found her after all this time?

The better part of her adult life
had been spent wracked with worry and denial, so she supposed it was only natural the eventuality would occur now. If she kept herself removed from the paranormal world, she wouldn’t run the risk of almost killing again. No one would be hurt.

She
stroked the pendant of moss agate that hung around her neck and held out hope the stone would increase her self-confidence and bravery. She never had cause to believe in the metaphysical properties of gemstones before, but maybe it was time to remember all the old stories her grandmother had tried to impart during her childhood. That had been years ago, and she wasn’t at all interested in the folklore at the time.

Her attempt to forget those stories was in vain as they spewed forth from
their locked and forbidden prison, unbidden, mocking. Vague recollections of whispered tales of fairies and dragons, witches and magic skittered through her memory. She shivered.

“You should have listened to your grandmother, Hannah.”

Panic spiked along her spine. She choked on the sour bile rising into her throat. She twisted around, her fingers closed tightly about the smooth pendant as her heart beat strong and erratic. “How did you get in here?” She tested the latches again—they were still firmly in the locked position. “How do you know about Gramma?” Her hands shook and she released the pendant. She clasped them behind her back, away from his prying gaze.

BOOK: Courted by the Vampire
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