As I mentioned on Friday, I've got another re-release available. One of my favorite short stories, An Unholy Embrace is now available for purchase. This great story is about an ancient vampire who lives far away from humans, only coming into their presence when he has need to feed.
Then, Terran comes into his life and turns everything he believes about humanity upside down.
I first wrote this story for the Bad Boys Print Anthology and it got some great reviews. When I was asked to bring it to ebook, I jumped at the chance. It's been through a few publishers, but I've always made sure it stayed the same as the original print version. And the ebook cover (my art) was even nominated for an award!)
Here's a little more about this book...
Awaken in the arms of a vampire.
Sebastian is an ancient vampire who has lived in the forest for centuries living off the blood of any unwary villager who happens to cross his path.
Teran has grown up in the shadow of the great forest, unwanted and unloved. When she comes of age and her loveliness sparks the interest of the men in town, her life becomes even harder.
When the vampire rescues her from a near rape, he finds himself enthralled with her beauty and her quiet courage. Teran falls in love with the brooding stranger, but when he breaks his word and steals her mind, she runs from him.
But Sebastian can't forget her and vows to win her back. Will Teran forgive him? Will they have a chance at eternity forever?
She heard the sounds of running footsteps behind her. Pursuing her as relentlessly as the smell of her own fear.
They were going to catch her. She couldn’t run from them forever. Somehow, she’d always managed to evade them in the past. Through fate or cunning, she didn’t know. Her heart fluttered and her mouth went dry at the idea that this time her luck had run out.
She darted through the twisted trees of the forest, tripping over exposed roots and brush. Branches clawed her bloodied face and pulled at her dress with bony fingers. The sharp crack of a foot stepping on a fallen limb behind her spurred her faster. They were so close.
Sobs of frustration and fear clogged her throat. Tears blurred her eyes. She tried to take in a deep breath, but she choked instead. Burning pain spread through her lungs at her labored breathing. There was no one to help her; no one who would come to her rescue. Her heart broke with the certainty of that. She had no one who cared enough. If she disappeared, no one would even miss her.
Hope was something that belonged to those who had love in their lives. It was for those who knew the joy of waking up with the certainty they were valued. She however, knew exactly what her worth was and why she was being chased through this desolate wood. She was good for only one thing in the minds of her pursuers.
“Teran!” an angry voice shouted. “You can’t run forever! Make us angry and we’ll only hurt you more.”
She bit her lip. They’d hurt her as he promised and enjoy doing it. She dodged a large boulder and ran down a deer path deeper into the woods.
“The bitch has gone into the forest,” another man shouted. “Get her! I want to hear her scream when I fuck her!”
Teran blinked back more tears. She raced up the path, but her legs were quivering with fatigue. She was slowing down, and it wouldn’t be long before the men caught up with her. She risked a look over her shoulder, and her heart nearly stopped when she saw a man’s form leave the shadow of the trees. His lust-filled gaze captured hers for a moment and she faltered.
“I’ve got her!”
She twisted back around and dodged into the trees, hoping that they would hide her from the man behind her. It was pitch black, but she blundered forward knowing it was the only chance she had.
When she came up hard against a solid form, her heart fell to her shoes. Arms came up to surround her and she screamed.
She was caught.
With her last ounce of strength she struggled. She kicked and bit the man, and he hissed in anger. A foreign sound that frightened her more than anything else had done that night. Her head lifted quickly.
Every bit of moisture in her mouth evaporated. The man’s eyes gleamed red and watched her with an animal-like intensity. They were both frozen for a long moment. Suddenly, he smiled, revealing sharpened fangs.
It was all too much. Teran screamed again and fainted.
* * * * *
He had lived in the forest a long time. Longer than many of the trees that surrounded him. Longer than the mortals who called it their own. He used them as he needed. They were his food, his sustenance. Now, one had literally fallen into his arms.
Sebastian gazed down at the unconscious woman. He’d thought at first she was a child, but she was just small boned and very thin. Yet, he could feel her womanly curves as he held her close against him. Her clothing was threadbare and patched, but clean, with the faint scent of flowers.
He brushed the long, black hair from her oval face, frowning at the marks he saw there. They did not belong on such beauty as this. Her skin was like fine porcelain with high cheekbones and a full pouting mouth. Her long black lashes fanned down over eyes he’d seen were a dark blue.
He sensed the hot blood racing through her veins. His body tightened, and his mouth watered. He wanted to bury his teeth in her neck and taste her living energy. Passion grabbed him in a burning fist. He wanted to bury his cock into her heat and let himself go like he hadn’t in decades.
His thoughts were pulled back by the sound of men crashing through the trees all around him. His eyes narrowed. The men were chasing this woman. Why?
He tucked the small human under his arm and moved so he was nothing more than a shadow in the darkness. One of the men blundered past him, and with the speed of a striking rattlesnake, Sebastian reached out and knocked the man to his knees. Moving faster than the mortal could see, the vampire knelt and gripped the man’s head with his large hand, using his enthralling powers to keep him still.
He snarled as the reasons for the chase were made plain. These men were rapists, intent on ravaging the beauty he held in his arms. He looked down at her bloody face, and his anger flared. He would not allow this.
He bent and put his mouth close to the mesmerized man’s ear. “Not this time,” he whispered. “She has escaped you.” Making a fist, Sebastian clubbed the would-be rapist, sending him sprawling to the dirt.
Then lifting the woman into his arms, he melted away into the shadows.
For more information and the purchase links for this book, go to http://www.cjengland.com/anunholyembrace/anunholyembrace.htm . At only 99 cents, it's a great Halloween book you can treat yourself with!!!
I'll be back on Friday with a new blog about the wonderful trip we took to get to Vancouver as well as some pictures of this fabulous city.
Hugs to all,