TWICE THE BURN
Blood ties change with just one bite!
Julius Talmane turns Isaiah Sims because he desires having him forever. The Triumvirate has little choice but to give its blessing considering Julius is not only its third member, he’s Layne Indigo’s best friend. What he didn’t see coming is falling for one woman he should never ever dream of touching.
One creature seizes Piara Kaur Indigo’s attention; another is thrown in her lap. Not only does she crave both, together, she intends to keep them. Their inability to hide shared carnal desires from Piara’s son, Layne, the strongest, most magical vampire alive, may well spin civilization toward destruction. Nature is on a rampage and no one is safe!
**Multicultural/Interracial MMF Romance**
Isaiah gazed into forest green eyes that drank his nearly six-foot frame in from head to toe, and back again. Suddenly, it dawned on Isaiah that the monster didn’t try to invade his mental path. He was glad since most everyone, particularly vamps he came in contact with, left a nasty skid mark in his mind for days. Part of his disorder. The one seated in front of him had not left a trace of himself!
“I know what I am.”
“Why do you think of it as a disorder when it is a blessing?”
“When you feel the misery I have…” Shit! Eyes blinked, became red. Didn’t stop Isaiah from adding, “If you endured pain, you most likely caused some.” How the hell did he feel what this one did without touching?
“You cannot begin to imagine.” Maybe the vampire’s eyes were hazel. Lips curved sardonically. “I allow you to feel what you need to know. You also see I’ve never harmed an innocent.” He shrugged. “I’ve appropriated blood but I do not kill unless necessary.” Pushing back a styled hank of dark blond hair, his smile softened. “They are green.” Hair was close-cropped on the sides, a modern, metrosexual style this creature wore well.
He’s anxious. “I don’t feel you in my mind this time yet you hear my thoughts.” Isaiah garnered much knowledge about vamps as any smart human should since they were a permanent part of society now. Normally they couldn’t read a human unless blood had been exchanged.
“A gift along with many others those of us who are very old possess.”
Cheeks warmed with embarrassment. “God!” Had he remained to observe Isaiah’s debasement? Did he know…
“You asked me not to watch.” He grasped Isaiah’s fingers and an amazing rush of lust swarmed his entire body. “Ahh, to have witnessed your raw passion.”
There were no voices when he touched Isaiah, no anguish, or sorrow. “I-you… Don’t.” He snatched his hand away not because he wanted to, but because fear rained down on him. He’d never touched a living, or undead, soul and not felt anything. He’s dead! “I will kill you, motherfucker.”
“You’re too late for that.” He stood. “I wish to give you something you have long yearned for.”
Isaiah trembled but this time he wasn’t sure it was fear. He wanted to reach out and touch the man. He’s not a man, damn it. “You’re a fucking vampire.”
“I feel everything a man does.”
“You’re a monster.”
“I crave what every creature does. Happiness, peace if it’s possible.” Eyes narrowed. “I embrace my bisexuality as should you and I believe there is no sin in having either sex if the feeling is reciprocal.” He turned away.
Wanting, needing him to leave, it shocked Isaiah that as the vampire prepared to go, he attempted to stop him. “Don’t you want…”
“Breakfast?” He twisted around, leaned, and kissed him lightly. Isaiah damn near swooned before glancing to see if anyone saw them. “The plant hides us from prying eyes, but what to do about my arousal?” Isaiah couldn’t help peeping at the vampire’s crotch. “I am Julius Talmane. Call me Juls.” He blatantly adjusted his dick. “I don’t want food.”
Isaiah croaked, “Wh-what do you want?”
He knows my name!
“I know everything about you.” Julius strode across the room, opened the door, and walked out leaving Isaiah with his mouth open.
He rounded the plant and searched his premises. No one, not even his helper remained in the front room.
You required privacy, I provided it.
“Stay out of my head.”
It will be hard to leave you alone now that I’ve found you.
Isaiah whispered, “I don’t want this.”
You do and I am the only one, Ice, who will see to your every desire.
Isaiah waited and waited to hear his silky voice again.
Absently massaging his aching knee, he searched his mind. Shit, shit, shit. He had really left and Isaiah felt even more alone which brought to mind his mother and father, the only other people who knew he was an empath. They never fully understood it and neither bothered to get him any sort of help. Isaiah didn’t hold them accountable because when he touched either, he absorbed more love than anything else. His parent’s fear went unspoken and Isaiah learned early to mask his true self.
Vampire said his affliction was a blessing. Never had Isaiah imagined it as anything other than a curse. His classmates tagged him with the nickname Ice because he remained aloof, standoffish, away from everyone and everything that could cause a child pain. When he touched people, felt their inner turmoil, occasionally their approaching deaths, as he had experienced with both parents a few years ago, he’d hole up in his room until it passed. As time went on he learned to put pieces in compartments in his mind giving them time to fade away. In school he participated in distance running because he never, ever had to come into contact with anyone if careful. Running afforded him freedom he found nowhere else until he radically tore his ACL. A little money left by his parents and hard work at two jobs afforded him enough to open Simply Smothered.
Never ran again and left with a limp for the remainder of his long, tiring existence.
Long. Vampires were immortal, lived for hundreds of years. Perhaps forever. How in hell did they stand so many voices? Could Julius help show Isaiah… No! Acquiring knowledge to handle bullshit he’d been plagued with his whole life would be miraculous yet the vampire spoke of another of Isaiah’s dreams, one he’d tried in vain to exorcise from his soul. Sniffing loudly, he breathed remnants of scented tobacco which lingered in his shop. Limping to the front door, he opened it and stepped out to look both ways. Gone.
For the first time ever—silence grew deafening. “I didn’t want you to go.”
Growl and roar-it’s okay to let the beast out. – J. Hali Steele