Night Reins by a.c. Mason
The Minoan Reins Book 1
erotic paranormal vampire menage novel (approx 98000 words)
Vampire slayer Tazrein Noir willingly served humanity... until the pull of the night destroyed the one good thing she had left. Now she struggles between the power of light and darkness within her. And the dark may be winning.
Mr. Elson is a Minoan General—one of the immortal dynasty of Crete, now also head of security for Pseira Industries. Haunted by the sins of his father, he spends his entire life as a light for honor, justice and sacrifice. Yet without his fated mate, he'll become all the things he fears… Lordel Pseira is the ruler of the Minoans, as well as the very modern CEO of Pseira Industries. On the verge of succumbing to the darkness, without his light, he shall be lost... Lordel's light is Mr. Elson's fated mate: Tazrein.
Deception, passion, and death hound Tazrein's every move. The Minoans want her blood to unlock the key to save their dying race. The Knights of Mortis want her dead so she cannot fulfill destiny. And the vile Nox want her for themselves so they can rule over all.
Sacrifice and blood. Sex and love. Destiny and fate. The balance hangs in Tazrein's hands...and in the eyes of the two men she fears she cannot live without, despite her continued existence hanging in the sweetly seductive balance between them both.
Days without hunting always left Tazrein Noir on edge. She needed the physical relief that made her corner of the world a safer place. With her modified Tanto blade tucked in her handbag, she was ready to make puddles out of vamps. There was a vamp-friendly bar by the harbor. Just the place for her to go for a good release.
A heat wave had set in. She strolled down the street. Decent folk didn’t go there after dark. Aside from the industrial complex and office towers, the harbor was a dead zone. She took off her jacket and unbuttoned her blouse. A little tit always helped lure her prey. Besides, the best way to catch a predator was to lay out a good offering.
As she rounded the corner, a vibration hummed in her eardrums, her personal vampire early warning system. A bouncer stood to the side of the entrance.
She stopped in front of the large doorman.
“I.D.?” he asked.
“Oops.” No way was she giving her name or address. “I forgot it at home.” The ringing in her ear grew to a constant buzz. “I guess I’ll come back another evening then.” She whirled around.
“Me?” She played coy, turned toward him, and quirked an eyebrow.
“Yeah.” He soaked her in from head to toe. “Let’s not worry about it tonight. I won’t tell if you won’t.”
“Aww, you’re such a peach.”
“My pleasure.” He rested his stare on her cleavage.
Men. Most of them weren’t too bright. Flash a little skin, and they forgot to use the bigger head. With a dopey grin, he held the door open.
As she slipped inside, the bang of the door behind her sent a thrill of excitement through her. Empty stairs led down into a room lit with red lights. Vamps were such products of their own clichés.
The teeming crowd of young women saddened her. She couldn’t save them all. Never. Like her, many of them went there seeking the creatures that frequented these places.
The new age song gave the lounge a sophisticated atmosphere, though anyone in their right mind would know this was the bottom of the barrel. Many years ago, the truth about vampires sank in. They were corpses. Dead physically and emotionally, but able to synthesize what mattered by feeding off the living in every way. Newly born vamps enjoyed the numbness––the hollowness made murdering people for food easier. But, then the older fiends missed the emotions. The chance to feel drove them to kill for sport, inflicting pain on their victims. The inner surge of feelings they got from humans was a vampire’s private addiction.
When they were in her mind, she sensed their arousal as they tormented their prey. They sought emotional authenticity. Love, happiness, fear, pain, sadness, anger, and jealousy were the emotions humans possessed, and what vamps had long ago sacrificed for immortality. Ironically, the longer the creatures lived, the more they hungered to experience these sensations.
Since at times she too worried about her own humanity, she understood why it grew to be an obsession.
As she stepped onto the floor, a human male grabbed her, and pulled her into the corner of the room. A struggle would call attention to her, defeating the purpose of her outing.
“Little Bo Peep, have you lost your mind?” His southern twang gave Mr. Tall, Blond and Handsome charm, but he didn’t behave like a gentleman.
Tazrein stared at the grip on her forearm. “Excuse me?” This man had evidently lost his mind. “Do I know you?”
“No, ma’am.” His lean jaw clenched. The scent of polyester and paper weaved in the air.
She’d wager on him being in law enforcement. “Then remove your hand from me or I will.”
He huffed, released her, and made eye contact. Pale sapphires stared into her. You are tired and will head home this instant.
Now this was interesting. He attempted to use the power of suggestion to get her to leave. If vampires could hardly influence her, it was doubtful a human could.
“What?” he asked, his brows creased together.
“Nothing. I just think you’re probably tired and should head home.” Bet that would throw Mr. Wannabe Hero off. “This place isn’t safe for you.”
His eyes narrowed. “For me?” His white dress shirt glowed in the black light. He wore jeans well. “You have no idea the mess you’re in, Bo Peep.”
“I’m in exactly the kind of mess I came here for.” She leaned into him.
He didn’t withdraw, his hand wrapped around her. “Let me get you out of here, I’ll make it worth our while.” His pitch was hoarse. He pressed his length to her leg.
“Coming here always proves worthwhile for me. Good night.” She stepped back, spun, walked over to the bar, and sat down.
Already, the vultures circled.
“What can I get you?” The bartender smiled, fake fangs showing, a wanpire aka wannabe vampire. He wore tacky black clothing, face painted white, mascara, eyeliner, and nails painted. A death worshipper. The freak had no clue.
“Tequila, a triple round of shots.” She handed him a fifty-dollar bill. Cash left no trace. “Keep the change.”
“For you alone?” A lean, dark haired vamp moved in next to her, his pearly whites gleaming. A blue dress shirt and black slacks gave him a professional appearance, but rotting human fragrance saturating him killed any appeal of his devilish good looks.
“Yeah,” she said. “It’s called a pity party.”
“And why would a beautiful woman like you need one of those?” The velvet tone of the vamp’s voice served to draw victims in.
She smiled at the easy flattery. “I got a call for an interview, but I’ve got no one to celebrate with. The usual sappy story.” Some truth mixed with lies, which made the information she gave vampires believable without compromising her.
The server set the shot glasses and filled one after the other, with a pouring stream of liquor.
“I can’t have the pretty lady drinking alone. Set me up to match.” He pulled out a hundred dollar bill and set it down.
“You don’t have to.” She waved him off.
“I know. I want to. It’s not every night I get to rescue a damsel.”
Most wouldn’t note the use of night over day. He wasn’t a young fiend. Hence, he sought the challenge in the room and not the easy target.
“I didn’t realize I appeared in need of saving, like a helpless lamb surrounded by wolves.”
“Not in the least. More like a panther about to give this wolf a run to the finish. Shall we?” He lifted the shot glass to his lips and downed the liquid.
“Bottoms up.” She brought the rim to her mouth and sucked back the fiery fluid.
“Tell me your name.” His mental touch entered her mind.
She long ago learned to protect her psyche from the manipulation. The intrusion felt like ice water dripping down her scalp. Things were about to get exciting. She loved when they used all their skills to get their way. “Rein.”
“What a sad name, unfitting.” He pressed his index and thumb to her collarbone trailing down between her mounds before squeezing her breast. “Beautiful and real.”
Warmth surged up her core. “Thank you. And you are?”
“Archie. You’re ready for round two.” As he lifted the glass and tossed back the drink, he bid her limb to do the same. “Move in closer to me.”
She shuffled forward. The sense of him controlling her movements swirled a thrill of heat inside. How exhilarating. He willed her to gyrate her hip against the length of his erection.
“Last one.” He raised the shot, and she mirrored his actions. He blinked, sliding away his brown contact lens, which revealed a red haze in his eyes beneath. “You want to come back to my apartment.” Even vampires wore facades in an attempt to blend in.
She nodded at his command.
“Good, it’s not far.” He pointed to the south end.
The cool touch of his fingers slipped through hers.
Goose bumps rose along her arms. He led her up the stairs and out into the night. Peace came over her.
Parked a few yards ahead, on the other side of the deserted road, was a blue van, with emergency plumbing written in white on the sides. The vehicle belonged to the misfits she sometimes called her friends, Gem, Vincent, and John. Hadn’t she told them not to hunt without her?
“What troubles you?”
She forced her lips into a smile. “This is going to sound lame, but I’ve never gone back to a man’s apartment like this.”
“Huh, how?” She tensed her shoulders.
“If you were that type of woman, I wouldn’t be interested. Don’t worry. I’m a gentleman. I won’t do anything you’re not asking for. I’m going to make you feel things you never have, and we’ll both get off. Trust me.”