Angel of Darkness(2)

By: Cynthia Eden

Vampire. Figured. Keenan had been cleaning up their messes for centuries. A mistake. That’s what all those parasites were. An experiment gone wrong.

Nicole opened her mouth to scream again and the vamp sank his teeth into her throat. Then he started drinking from her, gulping and growling and Nicole’s fingernails raked against his face as she struggled against him.

But it was too late to fight. She’d never be strong enough to break away from the vampire. She was five feet six inches tall. Maybe one hundred thirty-five pounds.

The vamp was over six feet. He was lean, but muscle mass and weight didn’t really matter—not when you were talking about a vamp’s strength.

Keenan stared at the narrow opening of the alley. Soon, he’d be able to touch her and her nightmare would end. Soon.

“You’re just going to stand there?” Her voice cracked.

His head whipped back toward her. Those green eyes—fury and fear—were locked on him.


She shouldn’t see him yet. It wasn’t time. The vamp hadn’t taken enough blood from her.

Nicole slammed her hands into the vampire’s chest, but he kept his teeth in her throat and didn’t so much as stumble. Her neck was tilted back, her head angled, and her stare was on—


“Help me.” She mouthed the words as tears slipped down her cheeks. “Please.”

Her plea seemed to slip right inside of him. “I will.” The words felt rusty, and he couldn’t remember the last time he’d talked to a human. No need for talk, not really. Not when you were just carting souls. “Soon ...”

The vamp’s head lifted. Her blood stained his mouth and chin. “Baby, you taste so good.”

Her body slumped as her knees buckled. Keenan’s wings stretched behind him even as his muscles tensed.

“Grade Fucking A,” the vamp muttered and he eased back. Why stop feeding? The vamp planned to kill her. Keenan knew that. Nicole St. James was dying tonight.

Nicole’s hand rose to her throat. Her fingers were shaking. “Y-you’re not real ...” Her eyes never left Keenan.

“Oh, I’m damn real.” The vamp swiped the back of his hand over his chin. “Guess what, sweet thing? All those stories you heard? About the vamps and this city? Every damn one of ’em tales is true.”

Nicole didn’t look at the vamp. She kept her eyes on Keenan as she inched her way down the alley. With every slow move, her hands pressed against the wall.

“You gonna run?” The vamp taunted. “Oh, damn, I love it when they run.”

Yes, he did. Most vampires did. They liked the thrill of the hunt.

“Why don’t you help me?” She yelled at Keenan, and the wind took the words, making them into a whisper as they left the alley.

That was the way of Pirate’s Alley. Sometimes, no one could ever hear the screams.

The vampire seemed to finally realize his prey wasn’t focused on him. The vamp spun around, turning so that he nearly brushed against Keenan. “What the fuck?” The guy demanded. “Bitch, no one’s—”

Nicole’s footsteps pounded down the alley. Smart. Keenan almost smiled. Had she ever even seen him? Or had her words all been a trick to escape?

The vampire laughed, then he lunged after her. Four steps and the parasite leapt at her, tackling Nicole to the ground, and keeping her trapped in the alley. Glass shattered when she fell—a beer bottle that had been tossed aside. She crashed into it and the bottle smashed beneath her weight.

“You’re gonna beg for death,” the vamp promised her.

Perhaps. Keenan slowly stalked toward them. He lifted his hand, aware of the growing cold in the air. The stories about death’s cold touch were true. Nicole’s time was at hand.

“Please, God, no!” Nicole cried.

God had other plans. That was why an angel of death had been sent to collect her.

The vamp’s hands were at her throat. His claws dug into her skin. The scent of decay and cigarettes swirled in the air around Keenan.

“Flowers,” Nicole whispered. “I smell ...”

Him. Angels often carried a floral scent. Humans caught a trace of that scent all the time, but never realized they weren’t alone.