Samuel Seecombe hasn’t been the same since a routine vampire hunt turned into a tragedy, and a trip across the ocean to New York City for an acquaintance’s wedding might be just what he needs to feel like himself again. What he doesn’t anticipate is meeting his beautiful vampire hunting counterpart in Violet Singer.
Violet wants a change of scenery. News of a vampire infestation at the Canadian border has her packing her stake, mallet, and holy water to take care of her wanderlust and the bloodsuckers at the same time. Samuel—a quiet, mysterious Englishman who can wield a stake like no one—accompanying her is an unexpected gift.
But Niagara Falls isn’t just for lovers and newlyweds. Vampires are increasing their ranks, and Violet and Samuel may find themselves outnumbered before they can sort out their feelings for each other.
He looked a little alarmed when he saw what she was doing. “Sam,” she said, “It isn’t as though you haven’t seen me undressed before. You want to do an examination, you can do an examination.” She shrugged out of her blouse and draped it over the back of the room’s straight-backed chair.
He sucked in a harsh breath, and at first she thought it was due to nervousness or her being bold enough to take off her blouse in front of him, until she saw her reflection in the looking glass on the wall. Her arm and shoulder were a map of deep blue and purple bruises. “Oh, damn,” she said, turning to the side so she could see the full extent of the damage.
“Indeed.” Samuel’s voice was dry. “Let me check you for sprains.”
“I didn’t know English lawyers studied medicine,” she said, but she let him gingerly prod around her shoulder. She cringed as his fingers poked a particularly tender area, but his touch was still gentle.
A shiver coursed through her. Even if it hurt a little, she liked having his hands on her.
“We don’t, but I have a basic understanding of field medicine thanks to the Searcher physicians. I assume American ones do, as well.” His voice had an oddly husky quality to it, and when their eyes met in the looking glass’s reflection, she thought she saw desire there.
Or she could be imagining things. He seemed strangely discomfited over their kiss on the boat.
She tried to keep their conversation professional, at least for his sake. “You’re assuming correctly, and I’d be doing the same thing if our roles were reversed. Ow!” That was right over her shoulder blade. His hand stilled but didn’t move from her skin. It prickled with awareness, something she was sure he picked up. She hastily continued. “But I think I’m just sore and bruised. Nothing’s broken or won’t heal over a few days.”
His fingers drifted down her bare arm, and her breath stuttered at the contact. This time, when their gazes met in the looking glass, she could definitely see a spark of interest there, and knew hers had to be giving her own away.
She remembered that kiss. He’d been good at it. She wanted to experience that again, this time without the threat of vampires or freezing water pouring down around them. Her eyes flicked to the bed, and any exhaustion she thought she was feeling before evaporated.
She wanted to show him that life was still worth living, that what happened in London wasn’t his fault. That people and organizations could change and adapt, that he wasn’t a bad person. She wanted to kiss away those fears, and more.
“Breakfast,” he said, snapping her out of her daydream. There was a rasp to his voice that hadn’t been there before.
He’s just as affected as I am.
“Beg your pardon?”
“We haven’t eaten a proper meal since yesterday. Shall I have something delivered to our room?”
He was right, of course. “Yes,” she said. “Just let me—”
He shook his head. “I’ll handle it. I’m still presentable.” He let her go, and she already missed the contact. Her skin still tingled where he’d touched her.
“Samuel, are you suggesting I’m not presentable?”
He’d already crossed the room and had his hand on the doorknob. His gaze perused her, slow and lazy, and Violet’s belly clenched in anticipation. “No,” he said. “In fact, Violet, I don’t think I’ve ever seen you look more … presentable.”