When several vampire knights walked into the room, I knew. Max was here. Then he walked in the door. The dark blue Armani suit does not hide the gorgeous built, blond Viking that we know as King Maximillion Vander Meer.
He kisses my hand. “Lily, it’s a beautiful party. It looks like our guests are having a grand time. Is there enough champagne?”
“Yes, I followed your list exactly.”
“Well, you’ve done a great job. Of course, my daughter isn’t here yet. I will have to call her to hurry.”
“If you pardon, your Majesty, could you do me a favor?”
“Anything you for you, Lily, and remember to call me Max.”
“Did you bring something special to share?”
“I do. I have an excerpt about when my lifemate was attacked. It’s from Vampire King of New York.”
She opened her eyes again and turned to face Max.
“You’re awake.” He caressed her face.
“Max, I have to go to work.” Evelyn was feeling better, but she didn’t know if sitting up would cause the nausea to return.
“It’s two o’clock in the afternoon. Laura called the library and told them what happened.”
She sat up and swung her legs over to stand. Before she could put pressure on her feet, Max was standing in front of her, helping her to get off the bed.
“What do you want to do?”
“Do you need Laura’s assistance?”
“No, I can manage.”
Max walked with her, and she went into the bathroom and shut the door. Evelyn was very conscious of his presence right outside. She tried to be careful with the most routine of movements not wanting to fall and having Max tear the door off its hinges or something like that. After reaching the sink, she washed her hands, and opened the door again. Max was standing there to help her back to the bed.
“Are you hungry?”
“No, just tired. Even doing that wore me out.” She slipped under the covers and he reclined on top.
“It will. You need more time to heal.”
“I’m sorry I ruined our first date.”
He smiled and caressed her cheek with his fingers. “No, you didn’t. You’re not responsible for what happened.”
“You think something was strange with that woman with the sunglasses, don’t you? Why can’t I remember any more about her?”
“I’ll find out. Right now the most important thing is that you’re well and safe.”
“Is that why you’re sleeping with me? To guard me?”
“Partly. I know it may sound strange, and we barely know each other, but I care what happens to you, Evelyn. Now go back to sleep to make your healing complete.”
Evelyn closed her eyes and immediately felt Max embrace her. Funny, how she didn’t fear him at all. She almost regretted that she would heal, because she didn’t want to give him up. Evelyn toyed with the idea of waiting until he was asleep and then kissing him.
Morning came faster than she desired. Evelyn yawned, unwilling to open her eyes. Her cheek rested against something soft and furry. The light came on.
“Well, what’s been going on in here?” Laura stood in the doorway.
Evelyn lifted herself up with her arms and gazed down at his golden chest hair. She’d been sleeping on top of Max. His shirt was opened, and her head had been on his chest.
“Oh, I’m so sorry. I mean. I-I mean . . .” Flustered by too much at once, Evelyn fled the room.
Max sat up.
“Were you taking advantage of my sister?”
Buttoning up his shirt, he smiled. “No. She must have unbuttoned it in her sleep.” He got off the bed. “Laura, we have a more important matter. She needs to be guarded. You and David take her to work. I’ll pick her up from the library later in the day.”
“Do you believe her attacker was supernatural?”
Evelyn was shelving a book on apocalypse legends, when a shadow crossed her peripheral vision. She jumped.
Shaking from head to toe, she looked up into the familiar face and relief flowed through her body. “Max.” She dived into his arms. “I’m glad to see you.”
“Why are you nervous?”
She led him further into the stacks, so they wouldn’t be overheard. “The police were here when I came in this morning. They had me show them how I left the library and where I was attacked. I don’t know. It just creeped me out. They were angry that they weren’t contacted right away. They said it would be difficult to catch her now. I’m afraid my description wasn’t very helpful.”
Max rubbed her back, as he hugged her. “Don’t worry about that. Your sister, David, and I will make sure nothing happens to you.”
“You are guarding me again?” Evelyn stepped back from him. She didn’t want to be reprimanded for unprofessional behavior by hugging Max.
Even if he’s worth it. She studied him from under her lashes.
“I’ve been hovering about all day.”
“Oh, God, don’t hover. What if someone sees you?”
He chuckled. “I didn’t mean literally.” He took the apocalypse book off the shelf and continued, “I’ll take this book and sit over at that table. Try and stay in my section, because if you go outside my range of vision, I will follow you.”
“You’re not serious.” She put her hands on her hips.
“I’m very serious.”
She didn’t know how she felt about that. “Surely I’m safe in the library.”
“We’re not sure.” His grim expression pulled his mouth into a tight line.
Evelyn bit her lower lip. Somehow in her mind, she thought the danger stayed outside, and hadn’t thought her attacker might come inside.
“Don’t look so sad. I know you’re off in five minutes. I thought we could go out to eat. Laura told me you like sushi.”
“I love it.”
“Then we could see Cries and Whispers. That is, if you still want to see it.”
“Thank you, Max.” Evelyn looked around and then stood on tiptoe to kiss Max on the cheek. Returning to her cart, she continued to shelve more books moving in and out of the rows.
Max took a seat at a long table and pretended to read the book. When he raised his head, Evelyn was gone. Damn.
A scream drew his attention to the circulation desk.
What happens next? If you can’t wait for the contest, Vampire King of New York , Arnhem Knights of New York, Book 1 is available in Kindle.
CONTEST! CONTEST! CONTEST!
Now for the Contest: To enter, say “I love vampires” and tell me why. Include your name and email. I will post at least once (sometimes twice) a day. Every post you comment on, increases your chances of winning. I will do a random drawing from the posts.
The winner gets their choice: one Kindle ebook from the list below, or a signed print copy of Vampire Princess of New York.
The contest ends when the party does! The Winner will be announced on Nov. 1st.
Good Luck and come on over to the buffet table. There’s so many people I’d love you to meet. David is waiting.
Susan Hanniford Crowley, Amazon Kindle Bestselling Author of Vampire Romance
Where love burns eternal and whispers in the dark!
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