[Siren Classic: Erotic Paranormal Romance, vampires, witches, HEA]
Sabrina Rivers, an orphaned half witch and magical misfit, has been hidden from the world for almost a century by her Aunt Eleanor. Her only possession is a mysterious dark crystalline pendant she can’t remove. She knows nothing about its powers or purpose.
When mercenaries attempt to steal the pendant in broad daylight, Eleanor has no choice but to entrust Sabrina’s safety to vampire Brandon Thorpe, kingpin of Atlanta’s supernatural underworld. While Eleanor hunts the would-be assassins, Sabrina learns what it means to finally be free to live and to love, but freedom has a cost. Her sheltered life left her with a heavy burden and no way to protect herself.
Is Brandon’s love real or a ploy to get Midnight’s Jewel? Will what she doesn’t know about her past get both of them killed? Can he protect her from her enemies and his? What price will she have to pay for love?
A Siren Erotic Romance
The little bell gave another happy tinkle. Sabrina gave a huff. At this rate, she was never going to get the week’s shipment recorded and put away.
Sabrina reentered the sales floor. A tall man stood scanning the rows of herb jars. He didn’t acknowledge her attendance when she stepped back behind the nearest display case. He wore long cargo pants and a woodland camouflage hunting shirt with the sleeves rolled up. His heavy boots clunked on the wide-board wooden floor as he stepped. His dusty-blond hair was cut into a flattop. If she had seen this man out, she would never have guessed he needed anything from a New Age shop.
She asked in her best customer-friendly voice, “May I help you, sir?”
He looked around a few more seconds before responding. “Yes. I would like to see one of your larger sterling silver pieces in the jewelry case.” He pointed to a pendent shaped like a tree. The branches and root system held a number of colored stones ringed by a thin circle.
Sabrina sighed to herself. She had an allergy to silver. It burned her flesh the instant it touched. The other witches in the community often whispered behind her back. There was some debate as to the purity of her bloodline. Some whispered werewolf. Others said vampire. Still, a handful debated demon. Perhaps she was a day-walking Child of Lilith. All of them agreed it had to be something dark and dangerous. However, no one was brave enough to approach Eleanor about it.
Sabrina pulled out a shiny brass key from the register drawer and unlocked the glass case. She used a polishing cloth as a buffer between the pendant and her hand. She held it out to the man. He took it without touching her.
“Is it sterling silver? And how much are you asking?” He held it up as if he were inspecting the quality of workmanship. Sabrina noticed he looked through and around the delicate filigree at her.
“Yes. We only sell sterling silver pieces here. That one is $54.95 plus tax. I can order you something in pewter, if you would prefer.”
He said nothing. The longer he looked at her, the more uneasy she felt around this man. Everything about him was off. Sabrina wished deep down he would go away. Why did the weirdoes always have to come in when Eleanor was out?
“No. Thank you. I think I’ll shop around,” he said, still meeting her eyes.
She opened her cloth-covered hand to accept the piece back. Instead, he made it a deliberate point to drop the pendant onto her uncovered wrist. The reaction was intense. Light smoke and the burning started the instant it made contact. Instinctively, she jerked her hand back and gave a yelp. She watched the silver fall to the floor, charred where it had touched flesh. Her other hand clutched her burnt wrist. She opened her fingers to check the wound. The damage was already healing.
The man did not react. He stood by observing her. When she looked up, he was watching and grinning. His eyes were filled with a triumphant malice. The grin turned to a snarl. He jumped over the glass display case and grabbed her by the throat. He shoved her back against the shelves. Glass jars crashed to the floor all around them.
The dark crystal flashed into life. Bright rainbow-like rays turned to white light and pushed out from its facets. The man was thrown back. Sabrina crumpled to her knees, gasping. He was stunned by the surprise, and the hesitation gave Sabrina the chance to scramble to her feet.
She fled toward the back room, hoping to make it out the back door. The man was faster. He charged her at full steam. Landing in the middle of her back, he went down with her to the floor. Using his weight to pin her, he pressed his face against the side of hers.
“Where is Midnight’s Jewel?” he panted. “Is that it around your neck?” He tried to pull at the heavy gold chain. The thick braided gold bit into Sabrina’s neck, but it did not come off. The man cursed and turned loose. The chain burned his hand. She could feel the heat but not the effect.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about! I don’t know what a midnight jewel is!”
She was beginning to panic. If he was there to rob her, why did he not just take the cash in the register or break the glass case? Why ask for something she did not know about?
A large hand grabbed a fistful of her hair. The clip bit into her scalp. He yanked her head back hard and gave a frustrated growl. “I want Midnight’s Jewel. You’re going to give it to me. Take off the necklace.” His voice vibrated with intense anger.
“I can’t! It doesn’t come off! There’s no clasp!”
Fat tears were starting to roll down her cheeks. She could not think of a single defensive spell to help save her. Her magic was sketchy, at best. In serious distress, it was nonexistent. She could not overpower him. He was twice her size. All she could come up with was to do like any human woman would. She took in a deep, shuddering breath and let a scream rip from her throat.
His weight shifted off of her body suddenly. Freed from his clutches, she crawled toward the backdoor. The sounds of a scuffle drew her attention. Over her shoulder she could see Clay rolling on the floor under the attacker. The camo-wearing thief sat astride Clay’s body.
Clay was holding the man’s wrists back. In the double-fisted grip of the man was a serrated hunting knife. He was shaking with the effort to overcome Clay’s resistance. The blade’s tip shook unsteady over Clay’s exposed neck. They were at a stalemate for the moment.
Sabrina threw out one hand and shouted, “Stop!” She meant to freeze the man in place. Only the weapon reacted.
She was nervous and excited. Her body screamed for more. Until a few minutes ago on the balcony, she had never been kissed, and now she was allowing this man to undress her. His thumbs rubbed across her peaked nipples. More heat ran through her. Could love happen so fast? Was it possible to know in an instant that the right person had been found? He pulled her bra to one side and sucked as much of her breast into his mouth as he could. She found her answer in the heartbeat it took him do it. Yes. Yes, it could be that instantaneous. She thought her heart would explode with this newfound knowledge.
His fangs pressed painfully into her skin but did not penetrate. His tongue swirled over and around her nipple. Hands slipped underneath her body. She arched her back to allow him to unclasp her bra and remove it. She gave a soft moan and ran her hands through his hair.
He released her long enough to pull his own shirt over his head. She ran her hands over his smooth, sculpted chest. There were a few light scars he must have acquired prior to becoming a vampire. Where they came from was not important in this moment. Broad shoulders loomed above her. He laid his body along the length of hers. His skin was cool to the touch, a stark contrast to the fire that seemed to ride hers. He kissed her again. Having her hot nipples against his cold chest made the rosy pebbles tighten even harder.
Instinctively, she moved one leg to the side, allowing him to slip between them. Her jeans were restraining. She moved her hands down his back. The muscles rippled under her fingers. She worked her way down to his hips and slipped her hands into his jeans. His ass was as well-muscled as the rest of his body. She wanted rid of the jeans, to have that last bit of freedom.
As if he read her thoughts, he unbuttoned both pairs. He got up to slide his off. Standing above her was a beautiful man who desired her. His dick was stiff and ready. He leaned over her and pulled her jeans down slowly, taking her panties with them. It was as if he were unwrapping a precious gift. She gasped. Nervousness and a little fear were beginning to mingle with the passion and need. Never in her life had she been so exposed and vulnerable. There was an urge to cover herself.
“Look at me,” Brandon whispered in a low voice. Sabrina glanced up from her nakedness to his eyes. The dark brown had become near-black pools. In a moment, she forgot about her reservations and allowed her boiling need to surface from very deep within.
Sticky nectar welled in her pussy. She could feel her clit plump. Her breathing increased to a near pant. He crawled back onto the bed, running his hands up her legs. He gently spread them apart. Leaning in close, he nuzzled against her bush and inhaled deep.
“You smell just the way I remember sunshine, only mixed with the sweet tang of a woman. God, you are intoxicating,” he said.
Before she had time to process his words, he flicked his tongue along her slit. A hard shudder rocked her body and her breathing nearly stopped. There was an instant when she thought she would levitate. She clutched a fistful of his silk sheets, anchoring herself to the bed. He lapped and sucked her pussy lips into his mouth until all the sticky fluids were licked clean. Then he moved his attention up to her plump pearl.
“You have the sweetest pussy I have ever tasted,” he mumbled into her clit.
He pressed his tongue flat against it and began working back and forth. The slippery, smooth motion made her writhe beneath him. A wonderful tingling emanated from her clit, spreading down to her cunt. A quivering began rippling deep inside her. It was strange and unfamiliar, but she liked it. Without warning, he slipped two fingers inside her. It pinched and hurt. Something was in the way. She cried out a little and bit down hard on her lip.
He stopped, pulled his fingers out, and sat up. A confused look crossed his face as he looked down at his blood-tinged fingers. He looked back up at her and then to his fingers. Understanding replaced confusion. He raised the bloody fingers to his face, inhaled the coppery scent, and plunged them into his mouth. A pained expression played around his eyes.
Sabrina felt embarrassed. Was she not good? Did it matter she was a virgin? She began filling with doubt. The heat along her skin started cooling. She covered her mouth and looked toward the window. Her breath hitched. Fear of being rejected niggled its way into the back of her mind. Had he changed his mind?
Brandon lay down beside her and spooned her. “Shhh, don’t cry. It’s okay,” he soothed. “We don’t have to do anything you don’t want. It only hurts the first time.” He smoothed her hair back away from her face. Fire rushed across her skin under his cool palm.
“I want you. Every time you touch me, something I can’t explain rises to the surface. I can’t help it. I didn’t know being a virgin would be problematic for you,” she apologized.
“A problem? No, it’s not a problem. I just wish I had known. I might not have been so forward. I would have done a better job preparing you. I can smell your emotions, you know. This whole conversation could have been avoided,” he said. He cupped a breast and kissed her exposed neck from behind. Fire flared across her skin once more.
She turned over to face him. “Please, finish this,” she whispered. His only response was a nod.
He rolled her onto her back. She opened her legs, but he coaxed them further apart as he positioned himself above her. Gripping the base of his shaft, he gently stroked his cockhead along her slit a few times. On the last downward stroke, he pressed against the opening to her pussy and paused.
“Are you sure?” he asked.
She nodded her consent. The fear fluttering in her stomach was being burned away by the rising flares. She wanted him inside her. She needed him to fill her body with his, to stretch her pussy around his cock. She was ready.