Monday, 27 January 2020

The Enemies of Vengeance: Vampire Formula Series Book 3

After a long wait, it is nearly here.
I am targeting mid-May for the release of the third and penultimate book of the series.

To whet your appetite here is the first chapter and the cover.



















Chapter One

I looked out from the top of the Eiffel Tower over the sprawl of Paris, the river Seine running alongside it cutting the city in half. The green symmetry of the Champ de Mars gardens lead up to the tower. The garden’s walkways filled with tiny figures of people swirling around in chaotic patterns, camera flashes illuminating their figures against the backdrop of the Eiffel Tower.
The city shone from street lights and car headlights, the engines sending a buzz into the air. In the distance, police sirens grabbed my attention as their blue lights squeezed past the frenzied flow of traffic.
The summer night’s gentle warm breeze blew across my face. The chatter of other tourist merged into one massive concoction of different languages and accents. The sense of their emotions creating a background of psychic chatter.
Thorn's hand squeezed mine, her thumb rubbing across my golden dragon Union ring. "See, so much better than the fake tower in Vegas. This is the real deal in the city of romance. There is no better place to spend our first week together in Union," she said.
I gazed into her sky blue eyes as her raven hair flickered from the warm breeze. She smiled, and I reciprocated the gesture and smiled back.
"It is better. Shame we had to go through so much to get here," I said, remembering my Dad's murder and my tortures at the hands of the Hunters.
"The journey is important, without it the destination isn't the same. I am sorry about your father, but we will have our revenge. They have tried their best to break us and they have failed. We are even stronger than before. We are in Union," Thorn replied and held up her hand with her silver thorn Union ring.
We had destroyed the Hunters and Turned in battle. Then we joined in Union and became Queen and King of the Dragans. The golden dragon scaled ring I wore and the silver thorn ring she wore, were symbols of our union. We had put our past with its arguments and betrayals behind us, and committed to a union to strengthen our bond.
Behind us, the crowds milled around and left a space while everyone else crammed together. "Do they know, Thorn? Is that why they leave us alone?"
Thorn looked at the gap left around us with the tourists cramming in against one another. "Not on a conscious level. But subconsciously they can detect our Dragan auras. I sense a level of underlying fear from them. They probably can’t understand it. But it's enough for their primitive instincts to give us a wide berth."
Although I wasn't entirely Dragan, it was apparently enough to be given some space. I had taken the formula at the time of the Union, so we could consummate it properly as Dragan to Dragan. The formula would have increased my overall Dragan genetics and decreased my human side.
 After the union ceremony, we spent a beautiful couple of days together in her Chateau in the south of France. Once the formula wore off, we travelled north to spend the last of the honeymoon in Paris.
"It's our last night in Paris, what shall we do after this?" I asked.
"Well, I am getting hungry. There are a couple of areas where I think a meal might find us."
"Then what?"
"Back to the hotel and say our goodbyes."
I stepped back and stared at her. "Goodbye?"
"Yes. I have some news for you. Kieran is being released from prison. I thought you may want to return home and finish your revenge," she said, and pulled out an envelope from her back pocket and offered it to me. I took it and opened it up. Inside was a single train ticket for the following morning back to London, England.
"You’re not coming with me?"
"No. This is something you should do by yourself. Plus Cassius has a lead on Cyrus. We are going together to find him."
I was confused and scared. I hadn't left her side since my ordeal at the hands of the Hunters. I felt safe when together. The phantom torture pains in my body re-ignited. The sight of Patrick's grinning face as he smashed my toes apart. Carmella's seductive offer and my betrayal of Thorn flooded back.
Now Thorn wanted to be rid of me so soon to go off with her former lover, to search out another former lover.
"But we should always be together. You promised we wouldn't separate again. This isn’t what I expected from our Union."
"We will always be together regardless of distance. I meant our bond holds us to one another. But at times it makes sense for us to take action apart. There are many things that we must do to win this war against the Hunters and Turned. We must spread our skills as required."
"So you are sending me away while you run off with your ex-lover to find another one of your ex-lovers."
"Jealous?"
"Yes. Of course I am jealous. You hope that both of them together might solve your infertility problems."
She laughed. "Don't be such a child. You know they were never a romantic attachment. I do believe the Dragan blood is changing you."
I scowled back and then stared into the night. It was true, the more Dragan I became, the more fiery my temper and I hadn’t learnt to control it. "Maybe, but still I don't like it."
"You will have to live with it, as I am trusting you not to do anything wrong. Not to misuse your seductive powers for personal pleasure."
I knew she was referring to Amber, but I wouldn’t respond. "I am not sure I care about Kieran and revenge anymore. I would rather stay with you."
"How sweet, but Cassius and I can move quicker without you. And I am afraid that you will scare off Cyrus."
"Why?"
"He will detect the human part of you."
"But you aren't exactly best friends anyway. I thought you were enemies. Why will he stick around to talk with you and not just run or attack regardless if I am there?"
"We are enemies, but he will at least know what to expect from me. A human, however, is another matter. From what Max said, Cyrus seems to be ready to talk."
"So how exactly did you and Cyrus try for a baby considering your feud?"
Thorn raised an eyebrow. "It was before the feud, and purely as part of the breeding program.”
I gazed back into the night sky. "And Cassius?"
"And Amber and Scarlett? You aren't in the position to hold moral judgement on my previous relationships. My deeds were long before you were even born. However, yours have been while we have been together."
"I don't like it. I should stay with you."
"As my chaperone? In case I get ideas?"
"But you will be with other Dragans. I know that is what you want. I know that is what you desire. I can only stay in Dragan form for a short time."
"But the formula lasts longer every time and one day it will change you completely."
"I know, but in the meantime, I am a poor substitute for a real Dragan."
She pulled me around to face her and took both my hands in hers. "My god, you are like a petulant child at times. I suppose I got to learn how to control and understand my Dragan side as I grew. It must be difficult to have all those emotions sprung upon you at once. To set the record straight. I enjoy our time together even when you are only human. I have told you before I have had relationships with humans. I enjoy it but in a different way. You must know this, as we spend time together in both your forms. There is a different dynamic depending on your state of Human or Dragan."
I bit the inside of my lower lip. I knew what she meant, probably in more detail than she realised. In my hybrid form, I could detect her emotions and knew she enjoyed our intimate time together when I was only human. She loved the fact that I was at her mercy and she could snuff me out in a single blow. Instead, she satisfied herself with a bite and a small sip of blood. However, she enjoyed the absolute power.
I always knew she had the power and ability to end my life, but until I detected her emotions, I hadn't realised how raw those feelings were. They were always on the edge of her mind and being forced back by her self-control. How many times had I been moments away from death?
"Yes. I know only too well why you enjoy it."
She frowned back at me. "Pardon?"
"Due to the heighten state between us and my new abilities, I can sense your emotions. I know your desires."
She blushed. I had never seen her do that before. She took a deep breath. "You think you can shame me, then think again. You know what part you play when we are together. Don't act the innocent, pretending you didn’t know your role. Just accept it and enjoy it."
It was my turn to blush. Of course I knew, but to feel her base desires was another level entirely. But it hadn't stopped me from being with her. It was like plummeting to your death in the arms of your lover. There was no place I would rather be.
"Anyway, we agreed on no mind reading," Thorn said.
"It just sort of happened. I wasn't expecting it."
"You can only use that excuse so often, V. Learn to control your powers. We could do without any more incidents of young women falling in love with you."
I knew she wasn't just referring to Amber and Scarlett, as a few of the waitresses at the hotel had been watching me.
"Sorry, I just forget that I am doing it."
"You enjoy the attention I think. Remember who you really are."
I nodded.
"So we are agreed, you go to Leeds, and Cassius and I are off to Rome to find Cyrus."
"I could still come but keep in the background."
"No. There is another reason you want to come."
"I just... I just don't want to be alone. Sorry, I’m not the great big powerful King of the Dragans you want."
"You are the King of the Dragans, and you will find your strength. This is why you must go and take your revenge. You have to find yourself again after what happened with Carmella and the Hunters. I don't need psychic powers to notice you are suffering still."
Carmella. I wish Thorn hadn't mentioned her. The torture was terrible, and I suffered from nightmares. But I also felt guilty about Carmella. Her story of being turned and just wanting a normal life struck a chord as it had parallels to my own situation. I felt a tinge of loss when Thorn killed her, even though I realised she was just manipulating me. She was playing good cop to Patrick's bad cop as he tortured me.
"But I don't think I want to kill Kieran. It’s beneath me."
"Do whatever you like. But he may seek revenge on your family. You still have an aunt and uncle in the area, and he may even hurt Giles's family. You can make sure they all stay safe by paying him a visit."
She was right. He would look for someone to blame for the death of his dad and younger brother. Liam, Kieran's twin, knew it was me and that may lead Kieran to attack my relatives as revenge by proxy.
"I will go back and make sure he knows to stay away. I will put a little fear in him, and if that doesn't work, I will make him feel some more pain. He has a family as well."
"Good. We could do without the distractions later on."
"Okay. I will go."
"When you are there, I want you to go and visit Miss Jones first. Make sure Annabel and Lucinda are okay. Also, scout out a new property for us. We need to re-establish a base in England."
"You mean after I gave up the location of the last one."
"You had to tell them something. I understand. But a new base would be useful. From London, travel up and visit Kieran and his family, and then once you are done get in touch, and we will arrange a meeting."
"Okay. I am sure I can handle a little house hunting and scaring off a human."
Thorn dropped her small handbag off her shoulder and fished out a box wrapped in wedding wrapping paper. "A gift," she said and handed it to me.
I took it and pulled apart the paper to find a smartwatch inside the box. "Thank you," I said, and leaned in and kissed her.
"It's a Union present or wedding present if that makes more sense to you. But it is more than just a watch. Read the instructions, and you will find out how to trigger a GPS transmitter."
"Cool," I replied and pulled the watch out its box and placed it on my left wrist.
"I have installed an app on my phone. If you trigger the transmitter, I will get a notification. So if you get into trouble, you can quickly signal for back up, and I will know where to find you."
I smiled. She understood my fears and had taken measures to help me.
"I have one as well. And I have installed the app on your phone. Likewise, I can always signal for you to come to my rescue."
"As if that will be necessary?"
"You underestimate yourself. The power you exhibited in the warehouse battle was immense. To transform into a part Dragon is more than any of us can manage. To create the scales, talons and Dragon strength, makes you almost invincible."
"But I haven't been able to do it again."
"Nor should you. It will probably drain you too much as it did the original Dragans."
"Okay. You have convinced me to go to England. I can tell I won’t be able to change your mind."
"Good. You can take the formula with you and the testing kit to indicate when to take it next. According to the last measurement, you have another few days to go before you can transform again. We need to make sure it isn't sooner else we may not have enough needles to complete the full change to a Dragan."
"You trust me to take the needles?"
"Of course. Take three of them. I will safeguard the others in case of an accident. Three should be enough for a journey to England and back."
"Three should be plenty. I don't plan to stay too long."
"Nor do I want you to. I want you back as soon as possible. Use the communication channels we agreed on to set up our reunion. Remember to go and see Miss Jones first. The address is in the envelope. I will let her know you are coming."
"Of course. No problem."
"Great now let’s finish off our last night with a bite and a bang," Thorn said and wrapped her arms around my back and squeezed us together.
Her flawless pale face and blood red lips tilted up to mine. Her sky blue eyes diluted with the black of her pupils. She closed her eyes as our lips met. I shut my eyes, leaned into the kiss and held her tight in my arms. Our lips pressed against one another while our hands embraced each other’s bodies. We kissed passionately, and I heard a few comments from the crowd of tourists but I didn’t care. I was with Thorn and the whole world had stopped.

1 comment:

Random spirit said...

Whoa, good to see its almost done. What was the hold up? Its been some time since the 2nd one came out.