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Authors: Megan J. Parker

Scarlet Dawn (6 page)

BOOK: Scarlet Dawn
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Seeming satisfied with the answer, Isaac kicked the door closed and he let out a fierce growl as he threw her on their bed and began to rip off Zoey’s top. Crying out at the ferocity, Zoey watched as her lover worked her free of the confining articles that concealed her eager skin from his gaze and whimpered as his lips began to trace their way down her neck. Stalking further down, he captured a hardened nipple between his lips as he rolled the other between his thumb and forefinger. She cried out, arching her back in pleasure as he continued his teasing.

“Ah! M-more!” She gasped and watched as he began to kiss down her stomach. Not wanting to wait for him to rid her of her pants, she worked her shaky fingers to rid her pelvis of the denim so that his wandering kisses offered him the perfect view of her black thong when he’d finally arrived.

Seeing this, he grinned up at her, “You sure this isn’t just dental floss?”

“I’ll let you decide that!” Zoey shivered as she pinched her nipples in reaction to the sight of her carnal lover’s bestial gaze emanating mere inches from her heated depths. Unable to bear the lingering torment of waiting for his touch, she hooked her legs behind his head and pulled. Though those of his kind had enough strength to easily resist far greater, he was easily guided into her core.

The feel of his tongue on her set her off and her hips raised as she let out a loud cry as waves of ecstasy began to tremor through her body.

Isaac looked up for a moment, letting his fingers continue what his tongue had paused, and grinned, “Ooh! So sensitive already?”

Unable to answer, she watched as he sat up, quickly ridding her of both her pants and thong before he began to slip out of his shorts. Stretching the waistband to its limit, he worked his semi-hard member into view.

Reaching out, she gripped his hardening length in her fist—her hand unable to reach all the way around its width—and marveled at how much remained on either side of her hand. “Oh my… it’s so beautiful,” she purred.

“Beautiful is not usually the term men like to hear about their—AH!” he growled in pleasure from the contact, instinctively thrusting against her touch and looking down at her, his fierce gaze watching her every move.

Feeling an erotic rush at the sense of the power she held over such a massive organ, Zoey shifted so that she could wrap both her fists around him—still grasping less than half of what he had to offer!—and began to pump her hands back and forth. She squeezed his member tight and he growled out louder. Moaning at the reaction she was earning, she grinned up at him, “But it
is
beautiful,” she smirked. “I think you just need to reacquaint yourself with
true
beauty to understand what I mean.” Pulling her hands away, she offered the tip of her prize a prolonged kiss before she lay back and spread herself.

“Mm… Now
that’s
beautiful,” Isaac smirked as he moved forward and pressed himself to her entrance.

Zoey groaned and nodded, thrusting her body forward and taking the crown inside of her. As the two began to meet the other’s thrust, each of their moans carried the others and the two fell into a blissful union.

 

 

Zoey couldn’t sleep…

Though sex with Isaac always knocked him out—any vitality within the therion was
always
spent after they’d reached their respective climaxes—it seemed the total opposite for her. Serena, one of the few people who Zoey felt comfortable discussing her sex-life with, had explained that she wasn’t alone in this phenomenon. However, whether this had something to do with their being auric vampires and they were possibly draining some vitality in the coital process or if it was just one of those men-slash-women things had yet to be explored to any great extent.

“Who knows,” Serena had shrugged off the question at one time, “maybe all women are a little bit vampire, huh? We’re just
that
kickass!”

Serena…

Despite all her efforts to convince people to hate her, she was the nicest, strongest person Zoey knew. And though Serena’s typical outward abrasiveness had only grown thicker and thornier since Zane had been taken, everyone that cared about her could see past it to the strong and loving friend who’d struggled against all odds to make things right for all of them.

She’d lost her mother and, in her pain and confusion, blamed her father and ran away from her home.

Loss.

Heartbreak.

She’d found promise in the arms of a human fiancé, Devon, who had been cast into the literal flames of jealousy by Kristine.

More loss.

More heartbreak.

She’d fought to maintain her strength and independence while bound to Devon’s disembodied aura; an aura that, despite his sincerest efforts, warped and faded until a jaded and jealous shadow remained.

And then she’d met Zane, a vampire who’d seen more pain and loss than any should ever have to suffer in a thousand lifetimes; a vampire who had the terrible burden of delivering to an already shattered girl the news that her father—his beloved mentor—had passed.

More loss.

More heartbreak.

And in that moment—a moment where two broken and pained minds had come to cross paths—a bizarre and beautiful thing had happened: an accident that changed
everything
. Devon’s body-starved aura had seen a chance in Zane’s arrival; a chance to once again lie with Serena as lovers should. But, though the possession of Zane’s body had blocked the night of passion they shared from the body’s
rightful
owner, there was another mind present to watch their moment of passion.

An owner that was never meant to know love or pleasure or happiness.

Maledictus
.

A monster—a curse
!—that had dwelled deep within Zane and ripped free every time he lost control. And, in seeing Serena in the throes of ecstasy—a moment the curse had no way of understanding—it grew to love her; to, despite its most basic purpose,
not
kill her.

Serena had found purpose and promise in her new family with the clan that she’d inherited, and Zane had found the hope that he’d long-since given up on. And Devon, no longer human enough to see the promise of
true
happiness for Serena, had been extinguished in a jealous attempt to destroy Zane
and
the curse so that he could occupy the body.

Even more loss.

Even more heartbreak.

But the two broken souls had come to find strength in one another and in that support they were able to rebuild what they’d once been.

And in rebuilding themselves, they’d become one.

Until Kristine—still harboring the lingering rage of Serena’s history with Devon—had returned to do to Serena what she blamed her for:

Not knowing of the other minds existing within Zane’s body, she’d ripped Serena’s lover from his body.

Zoey shook her head.

How much loss could one soul handle?

How many times could a heart break before there was nothing left to mend?

Though even Serena may have believed that she was too callous of a bitch to feel any pain, those who knew her best could see that she was suffering.

“Serena…” Zoey whispered.

Though his aura still lagged with the weight of sleep, Isaac whimpered at the meek sound of his lover’s sadness and rolled over, draping a strong arm around her waist and pulling her close to him. Blushing at his protective nature, Zoey nuzzled against his chest and reminded herself that, first and foremost, Serena was a fighter.

If
anybody
deserved pity, it was the ones that got in her way.


S
erena?” a familiar voice caressed her skin with ghostly warmth and she opened her eyes as was met with Zane’s mismatched gaze.

“Zane?” She frowned, biting her lip, “How are…?”

“Serena… I miss you. I miss you so fucking much,” Zane frowned, sitting on the edge of the bed.

Serena sat up, still not sure what she was seeing.

Was she dreaming?

His form was hazy and seemed to be lit by his own personal source; the strange, white glow faded in-and-out over his face.

“I… I miss you too, Zane! I swear I’ll find you soon! I swear! I’ve never stopped looking! Once I find that bitch, she’s dead; she’s fucking dead!” Serena whimpered, crawling to the end of the bed to join the spectral shadow of her lover, “I won’t rest until I’ve found her.”

“I know you won’t, babes; even if I told you to move on and be—”

“No! I’m not giving up on finding you!” Serena choked on a sob.

Zane smirked and nodded, “See? Just as stubborn as ever!”

“Zane…” Serena felt a rock lodge in her throat and her eyes began to burn.


Shhh. It’s going to be alright,” his voice was calm and a wave a reassurance rode on his words and rolled through her body.

She welcomed the feeling.

It
was
him!

Though she had no idea
how
he was there, this was all the evidence she needed that he was still alive.

That she wasn’t crazy to still be looking for him!

“I’ve been at such a loss without you,” she felt the first few tears roll over her eyes. “You goddam asshole! I’m not supposed to cry like this…”

The warmth and affection in Zane’s eyes did not sway. “Don’t worry. I won’t tell anybody.”

Serena laughed and clenched her jaw when she had enough control to do so, bringing her fist down on the bed. “Dammit!
That’s
what I mean! I… I can’t even stay
sad
with you there as… as…” She shook her head, “Dammit, Zane, what’s happened to you? Where are you? Please…
Please
tell me where you are!”

Zane frowned and shook his head, “I’m… I’m not sure. It doesn’t feel like a
where
; most of the time I’m not even self-aware enough to know
who
I am! Something just… something called to me now. I suddenly saw a path and knew that you’d be at the end of it.” He shrugged and looked at his hands, moving as though he was about to clap and instead letting one hand pass through the other, “I actually
feel
like a projection of myself,” he looked back up at her, “but it’s worth it if it means I can see you right now.”

Serena whimpered and shook her
head, “It just… nothing feels the same anymore. I try—I swear I try—but I just feel so hollow and tired. I always feel so weak lately.”

“Well, that’s your first mistake! Come on, Serena,” Zane’s face widened as he grinned. “You weak? This coming from the cold-hearted bitch
who beat the shit out of me less than two minutes after we first met? And now you’re going to let
this
set you back?” He cocked his brow, “The girl who’d blatantly ogled a picture of a man in a Speedo
after
we’d just fucked like porn stars feels lost without a single man? C’mon, babes, you could replace me in the time it takes you to bat an eyelash.”

Serena bit her lip, “I… I never meant any of those things, Zane,” she looked down, “Even when I joke like that now I… I feel like there’s a fist in my gut. I feel like I never got to show you how much I really cared; how much I
really
loved you.”

Zane shrugged, “I’d say this is a decent start.” He smiled, “Just don’t let me forget it when I get back, okay?”

“I’ll
never
let you forget it,” Serena smiled. “Even when I’m kicking your ass for being a loser.”

Zane chuckled and shook his head, “Still a hardcore bitch,” he gave her one of his looks, “
You
are
tough, Serena. You don’t need anyone’s reassurance.”

“How can you be so sure of me?” Serena felt a sting in her lip and tasted blood. Despite this, she kept chewing on it.

Zane frowned at the sight and shook his head, “Because you’re too stubborn and strong-willed to
ever
be
anybody’s
bitch but your own. Believe in yourself.” He leaned back, “So what’s new anyway? Raith treating my body well?”

Serena shrugged, “I guess. He goes the gym a lot more than you ever did.”

Zane chuckled, “You were all the workout I ever needed.”

“Ah, well in that regard the body is going without,” Serena quipped. “As much as it seems to rub Nikki the wrong way—or not at all, I suppose—I’ve been making sure of your ongoing celibacy.”

“Ouch. All those years being locked in my head and Raith’s cock-blocked the minute he’s out in the open,” Zane pouted. “Let the poor guy take a swing at Nikki. I’m sure they could both use it; not like it’s me in there anyway.”

“It’s
your
body!” Serena glared.

“Said the girl who let her phantom boyfriend possess and date-rape me?”

Serena blushed, “That… that was different.”

“Not sure how,” Zane chided her. “If all of this body-slash-no-body shit has taught me
anything
, it’s that love transcends the flesh. My body is in the other room—my flesh and blood and organ…”

Serena raised an eyebrow, “You only have
one
organ?”

Zane shrugged, “Only one that you
wouldn’t
sell on the black market for a new car.”

Serena nodded, “Fair enough.”

Zane rolled his eyes. “The point is, my
body
is in there… but this part of me—this… spectral, airy nonsense—is what you’re after; what’s making you laugh and cry and beat the shit out of my three-thousand dollar bed over.”

Serena frowned and poked the mattress, “You paid three-grand for this?”


Maledictus
kept ripping up the cheap beds. Finally wrote a message in blood—though we never found out
whose—
on the walls of the main lobby that if we didn’t upgrade then he’d destroy the city. Your father was pretty quick to special order that.”

Serena sneered, “He always was a charmer. Not exactly missing him.”

Zane looked over, “He hasn’t emerged lately?”

“Not since…” Serena bit her lip.

“That son of a bitch probably only responds to
my
rage,” Zane shook his head. “Those clever bastards!”

Serena frowned, “Who?”

Zane shook his head, “Don’t worry about it. So how’s the whole ‘Clan Leader’ role working out?”

Serena shook her head, “Like a jagged dump. The Council approved a new clan in town.” She growled, “Bastards are coming in on
my
fucking turf.”

“You tried pissing on a park tree yet?
Y’know, if you’re gonna play the whole ‘mark your territory’ game,” Zane laughed.

“You’re going to be a dick even like
this
?” Serena glared, “Don’t think that just because I can’t touch you I won’t kick your ass!”

“Ha! There’s the Serena I came to know and love! Good to see you are still in there,” Zane smirked.

“There’s nicer ways to console me. Just because a splinter in the balls is hilarious doesn’t mean the laughter is the best medicine to fix it.”

“Yeah, but you obviously don't love me for my manners. Just like I don’t love you for your finishing school grades,” he laughed, sticking his tongue at her. “So what do you plan to do with this clan?”

“I’m going to pay the assholes a little visit tomorrow. Show them not to fuck with me and all,” she shrugged. “And I figured while I was visiting, I’d sneak around and see if I couldn’t gather some intel on
exactly
why they’ve come to town.”

“Oh? Why do you think they’re up to something?” He looked over.

“Because the Vail Clan’s been an established force in this area for
decades
! Then, only a few short months after
I
yank the title of ‘leader’ from my dick-hole, power-hungry brother, The Council green-lights a totally new clan to build just downtown?” She shook her head, “This is in response to
something
, and there’s no way it has nothing to do with me or what we’ve been doing.”

“What you’ve been doing?”

Serena nodded, “Some small-time rogue rolled in to town last week and everyone seems to think
that’s
what’s motivating this response. A whole new clan for
one
rogue; that sound suspicious to you?”

“Yea, it really, really does actually,” Zane frowned.

“What do you mean ‘actually’?” Serena glared.

Zane shrugged, the pale glow over his ghostly form shifting and fading slightly, “Only that you’re rarely that logical. At least on the surface, anyway.” He shook his head, “Normally The Council wouldn’t waste resources for something like this; they’d just send one of their own if they felt the local clan was short-handed.”

“That’s exactly how I feel,” Serena nodded, “but the others think it’s normal and I should go say my introductions.”

“You? Introductions?” Zane made a shuddering motion before turning back to her. “I’d like to see that!”

Serena blushed, “I… I wish you could see it, too”

“It’s going to get better, Serena. You’ll see,” he smiled warmly and reached out to make a familiar motion. As his ghostly hand reached her chin, she raised her face to allow them both to believe he’d raised her face on his own. “Chin up, babes.”

“Easy for you to say, phantom-Zane,” Serena giggled.

“Oh you
know
I’m just as hot as the real thing,” he stuck out his tongue and his body’s glow began to fade again.

Serena bit her lip, “Unless I’ve finally gone crazy and you’re just a figment of my imagination. Then you’d look however I’d want you to look.”

“Nah, then I’d be here as Gerard Butler or Channing Tatum or one of those dry Hollywood queefs.”

“See?” Serena cast an accusatory finger in his direction, “
That’s
how
I’d
talk—though I’d
never
say an unkind word about my Tatum-tot...—anyway, that just proves that you
are
just a figment of my imagination!”

“Tatum…tot?” Zane shook his head, “Look, maybe we’re just a pair of vulgar fucks who are too perfect for one another for the other to believe it could real,” he scoffed. “God damn… You’re still as beautiful as I remember.”

“O-kay. Now I know that was something my mind made you say!” Serena laughed, falling onto her back and staring at her ceiling. “This has been a nice crazy-bitch dream.”

“Maybe. Maybe not,” Zane shrugged it off and smirked over at her, “Either way, I’m enjoying it, too, so don’t wake up just yet.”

She felt her cheeks heat and sighed, “Even like this you can make me blush!”

“You know you love it,” he grinned.

“Psh! How could I not?” She laughed, turning to him as she began to reach out, “I promise to find you soon.”

“I’ll be waiting. For as long as it takes,” he smiled and moved his hand out to meet hers.

She wanted his warmth.

She wanted his touch.

She
needed
him.

As their palms met, Zane’s hand rippled and phased through her skin, the ripple traveling up his arm. As she watched, his form weakened—the pale light fading—and he drifted off like vapor vanishing into the air, leaving Serena staring at the empty edge of her bed.

Alone…

She shivered and fell back into the only warmth she could turn to and pulled the blankets over her as she nuzzled her face into Zane’s pillow.

BOOK: Scarlet Dawn
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