Marked by the Vampire Page 24

When you die…what’s the last sense that you lose? That stupid f**king question ran through her mind.


Because she could hear everything happening around her, but she couldn’t speak. Couldn’t see. Couldn’t feel. She was wishing then, wishing desperately that she could live. If she had any magic left, any power, she just wanted to live.

To be with Shane. To see what their future could be like. He’d made her happy. Made her feel safe. For such a precious time, he’d even made her hope.


She couldn’t hear him any longer.

She couldn’t see anything. Couldn’t feel anything. Couldn’t hear anything.

I love you, Shane.


“We need Holly in here, now!” Pate bellowed. Then he locked his hands around Shane and tried to pull him away from Olivia.

That shit wasn’t happening. Shane shoved him back. “Olivia, love, please, open your eyes!” This wasn’t supposed to happen. He’d transformed others over the centuries. This had never happened.

Her convulsions had stopped. Her eyes were closed. Her chest still. She wasn’t breathing. Wasn’t moving at all.

He kept trying to give her more of his blood. If she just took more, she’d be all right. She had to be all right.

Connor grabbed him. So did Duncan. He fought them, twisting and punching with all his might. No one could take him from Olivia!

“Holly may be able to help her!” Pate shouted. “Dammit, man, we are your friends, stop. Stop!”

And he realized that he was strangling Duncan.

Shane heaved out a breath. One. Two. His fingers loosened on Duncan as Holly rushed to Olivia’s side.

Holly felt for Olivia’s pulse. “What happened to her?”

“I was…” His voice was hollow. Broken. “I was going to change her.”

“Take him out of here,” Pate ordered Connor and Duncan. “Get him out, now! Take him to the yard.”

Shane shook his head. He lunged toward Olivia.

But Pate was in his path.

“I can’t find a pulse,” Holly said, voice sharp.

No, no.

Pate put his hands on Shane’s chest. “Holly needs room to work. Go to the yard. Wait for us.”

“I can save her!” He had to save her.

Sympathy flashed on Pate’s face. “No, Shane, you can’t. If you could, then she’d be breathing right now.”

Olivia couldn’t be dead. She couldn’t. And he wasn’t leaving her. His control broke as he roared for her. He leapt forward, determined to touch her. To get to her.

But the others swarmed in on him. Pate. Connor. Duncan. They dragged him out of there, even as he fought. Holly was bent over Olivia, but Olivia still hadn’t moved.

“I wish you’d stay with me!” Shane shouted out, desperate. “I wish you’d never leave me!”

“Dammit, man, don’t say shit like that!” Connor growled. “With the way those djinn wishes work, you’d wind up with a zombie bride.”

His friends weren’t letting him go. No matter how much he hurt them. “I just want her.”

Then they were outside, in the area known as the “yard” at the facility. A high, chain-length fence surrounded them—that fence was laced with silver. The moon shone down on them, too bright.

He heaved the others off him. Turned to rush back inside.

“If she can be saved,” Pate said softly, “Holly will save her. Holly’s a doctor—give her a chance!”

Medicine wasn’t enough.

“Give her a chance,” Pate urged again.

Shane’s hands were fisted at his sides. “What will I do if she dies?”

Pate didn’t speak.

Is she already dead? Did I kill her? The one woman that I wanted the most?

He truly was a monster, and right then, he was in hell.

Chapter Thirteen

Olivia’s eyes opened as she sucked in a deep gulp of air. She blinked and saw Holly only an inch away from her.

Holly’s jaw dropped. “You’re alive!”

Of course, she was alive.

Holly scrambled back. “You were stone cold dead!”

Right, well, didn’t that happen when you became a vampire? Olivia wasn’t quite clear on the whole transformation bit, but vamps had to be called the undead for some reason.

“Where’s Shane?” She pushed off the floor. She felt good. Better than good. Amazingly strong.

Amazingly hungry.

Holly inched back. “He’s outside.”

He’d left her? Not cool.

“Olivia…what are you?”

Olivia wasn’t too sure on that score herself. “Let’s find out.” She headed toward the red markings on the floor. Bracing herself, she lifted her foot to walk over them. Maybe she’d slam into the invisible wall again or maybe—

She just walked right over the red lines. Olivia laughed. “It worked!”

“Did it?” Holly sounded unsure. Worried.

A big smile broke over Olivia’s face. “The spell doesn’t hold me in check anymore! I’m free!”

“Or just even stronger.” Holly bit her lip. “You should…you should make a wish. See what happens.”

Her heart stuttered. “What if it goes wrong?” Now she was the one who sounded unsure.

Holly swallowed. “Make a wish.”

Something that isn’t dangerous. Something that won’t backfire on me. Or on anyone else. “I wish it would rain.”

That was an easy enough wish, right?

Holly stared back at her. Then she looked up at the ceiling. Nothing.

Well, at least rain wasn’t falling magically from the ceiling.

“Outside,” Holly murmured. “We should check outside.”

Olivia was already ahead of her. She sprang for the doorway, so eager to be out of her prison. She ran down the hallway and then realized she was following a particular scent. His scent. Rich and masculine and sexy.

And she could hear Shane. The faint rumble of his voice. Even though he was outside of the building, she could still hear him.

She had a vampire’s senses.

Olivia threw open the exterior door. Stumbled into the area she’d heard the others call the “yard” before. The men whirled toward her.

She ignored Pate and Duncan and Connor. Even though they were all staring at her like she was some kind of freak.

“Zombie bride,” she heard Connor mutter. “Please, don’t be…”

“Shane,” she whispered, and she smiled at him. “It’s not raining.”

In the next second, he had her in his arms. His mouth crashed down on hers and it was wonderful. Fantastic. Fabulous. His body was strong and hard against hers, and it wasn’t raining.

Her wish hadn’t come true.

Her tongue slid over his lips. Pushed into his mouth. Adrenaline and desire and euphoria were swirling within her.

So was something else…

Her mouth pulled from his. Olivia’s teeth were burning. Stretching. Yes, she had a vampire’s senses. She also had a vampire’s hunger and that bloodlust was growing within her.

Shane stared down at her mouth. Then, slowly, his gaze lifted to her eyes. A wide smile split his face. “It worked!”

She wanted his blood.

She wanted him.


“I don’t think she’s a djinn any longer,” Holly said from behind them. “He changed her.”

“No,” Shane said as he kept staring into Olivia’s eyes. “She changed me. She changed everything, for me.”

In his hot stare, Olivia could see his desire and his love.

“I thought I’d lost you,” he whispered.

For a minute there—or longer—Olivia had thought she was lost, too.

“Uh, yeah…a newly turned vamp will need to feed,” Connor said. “We should um…give them some privacy.”

Shane didn’t look away from her. “Yes, you f**king should.”

She heard the others retreat inside. The door shut—very loudly—behind them. Olivia ran her tongue over the edge of her new fangs. “I want to taste you.”

“Love, I’m yours…”

She pushed him back, and he hit the tall, heavy fence. Olivia grabbed his shirt because now that they were alone, she couldn’t hold back.

She’d always been told that physical lust and bloodlust mixed for vampires. It was sure mixing for her.

His shirt tore beneath her hands.

He laughed.

She loved his laugh. Olivia rose onto her tip-toes. She pressed a kiss to his throat. So good. She licked him. His pulse was racing, and it should be awkward, she should be hesitating—but her teeth sank into him so easily.

So simply. So perfectly.

His blood flowed onto her tongue. Rich, but strangely sweet. Like a fine chocolate. She loved chocolate.

He groaned, a ragged, desperate sound.

Olivia immediately jerked her mouth away. “Did I hurt you?”

His eyes opened.

No, that’s not pain.

“Pleasure, love, only pleasure.” And then he was the one to catch her in his arms. He pulled her close. Lifted her up.

Olivia wrapped her legs around him, and when his teeth sank into her throat—

It was just as it had been before. A powerful surge of pleasure rushed through her whole body. Incredible.

She pushed her sex against him. Their clothes were in the way. She wanted to be naked. She didn’t care where they were. She had to be with him.

This time, her back hit the fence. He let her go just long enough to strip away her jeans and to yank open his pants. Then he lifted her up again. Her legs curled tightly around him.

“Hold on,” he told her.

“Always,” she promised.

His fingers twined in that fence, gripping tightly on either side of her head, then he surged into her. Filling her so deeply, so completely.

He thrust, driving into her once, twice, surging right over her clit—

She bit him.

They both came, erupting with a wild fury that didn’t end. A fury that churned through Olivia, pulsating through every inch of her body. So powerful. So complete.

So perfect.

When it ended, finally, aftershocks still had her sex contracting around him. She licked his throat, trying to soothe the small wound that she’d left there.

She’d marked him.

Just as he’d marked her.

Shane’s head lifted. He stared into her eyes. “I love you.”

“I love you, too.” After all, she wouldn’t have sex up against a fence with just any guy. Only Shane. Forever…Shane.

“Always,” he said as his lips brushed against hers.

It was a promise for them. Hope for the future.

“Always,” Olivia whispered back.

And a light mist began to fall on them. Soft rain that drizzled down from the night sky.

She tensed in his arms.

He kissed her again. “It’s okay. It’s just a little rain.”

Olivia shook her head. What if it wasn’t just rain? What if it was more?

“It’s just rain,” he said again, his eyes dark and determined as he gazed at her. “It can’t hurt us. Nothing can hurt us. Not anymore.”

I wish the rain would stop. She had that thought, so clearly in her mind.

And the rain grew harder as it pelted down on them.

“I wish the rain would stop,” Olivia shouted.

It didn’t. It soaked them. Poured and lightning flashed.

She laughed then. Laughed and held tight to her vampire lover. The darkness inside of her didn’t seem like a dangerous, crouching beast any longer. It seemed…natural. A part of her that could be controlled.

She tilted back her head and let the rain fall on her. The past washed away. All of the fear. All of the death. The rain washed it all away.

The future waited for her now.


What more could a woman wish for?


The rain had stopped.

Eric stood at his window, staring out at the night.

Shane had taken Olivia away. He wasn’t sure where they’d gone. When a vampire as powerful as Shane wanted to vanish, stopping him wasn’t exactly an easy thing to do.

Especially if I wanted to keep him on my side.

If he’d battled Shane, tried to keep Olivia there longer for tests, hell, he might very well have lost his head.

That tended to happen to Shane’s enemies.

“So…she’s not a djinn any longer?” Connor asked carefully. “She’s a vampire?”

“She’s not a threat any longer.” That was the only thing he was willing to say. “But others are.” He turned toward the werewolf in front of him. “I need your help.”

Connor shrugged. “Well, seeing as how you’re the guy who keeps me from getting tossed into Purgatory, you know I’ll do what you want.” His jaw hardened. “I kind of f**king have to.”

Because Connor wasn’t a man with a clean past. He was trying to earn his redemption, the same way that Shane had.

“Case is going to be out of commission for a while.” That was putting things mildly, but at least the guy would survive. Eric had plans for him, too. “You have to take his place.”

Connor raised his brows. “Just where was his place?”

“I need you to guard Chloe Quick.”

Surprise flashed across Connor’s face. “The senator’s daughter? But the senator is dead! He’s no threat to her any longer.”

“He’s not. But others out there are.”

Connor leaned toward him. “You need to find someone else for this mission.”

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