Blood Moon Page 45

The hell I was going to be their fox.

Which was a great theory I had no idea how to put into practice.

My throat was dry from gasping, and sweat gathered under my jacket. I forced my legs to keep moving. Dirt rained down from Kieran’s boots. A gutter broke and he stumbled, nearly falling. He swung above me like a human pendulum. I glanced up, and the tiny break in focus made me slip on a patch of frost and snow. I crashed into a metal gate. It was locked. I couldn’t get through, and I couldn’t reach Kieran to help him. His flashlight was on the ground, the beam slicing across the toe of my boots when I spun around. The fence dug into my shoulder blades. Miniature dust devils of snow and discarded chocolate bar wrappers skittered into the corner. I lifted my crossbow, hand trembling slightly in the cold.

There was just enough light to see the vampires strolling around the corner, blocking the only exit. Kieran cursed and dropped from the edge of the roof, where he’d been clutching a broken gutter. He landed hard and limped to my side, a stake in each scratched and bleeding hand.

He was a good fighter. And I had good aim. But these vampires were old, I could tell that right away. And that meant we were no match for them, training or not. And I was covered in blood, maddening them. And I’d run away, which I knew I wasn’t supposed to do. It only made vampires more eager to chase you. But sometimes, standing still was simply not an option.

Speaking of options.

We had none.

I could tell Kieran agreed. His face was grim, his shoulder cutting across mine in an effort to shield me. So I did the only thing I could think of.

I opened my mouth and screamed.

I didn’t just scream, I shrieked and screeched and caterwauled. This wasn’t a damsel-in-distress scream for help. This was every decibel of noise my lungs and vocal cords could possibly muster.

Vampires needed a certain amount of secrecy, even these who clearly weren’t following the rules. The Blood Moon attendees were strictly forbidden from feeding in town. There was a blood supply available in the encampment and some of the older tribes traveled with their own human donors. So the ones who decided to troll through Violet Hill thought they could get away with it.

“Shut her up,” the woman snapped. She flinched when I made my voice even higher-pitched.

And I still had my crossbow. I fired a bolt, still yelling. It caught her right under her collarbone. She hissed in pain and surprise. Next to her, the man jerked in surprise, then his eyes narrowed furiously.


One day I might learn not to seriously piss off vampires.

Today was clearly not that day.

Kieran flung his stake. It grazed the man’s throat, drawing enough blood to splatter the air. I coughed, drew a deep breath and kept on screaming.

A light switched on at the other end of the alley.

“What the hell’s going on out here?” an old man bellowed grumpily. “It’s the middle of the damn night. I’m calling the cops. Damn kids.” He slammed his window shut.

The screaming, combined with the GPS in Kieran’s phone, had some of our team charging up the alley behind us. Hunter used a Dumpster on the other side of the gate to climb up, aiming her own crossbow. Eric and Chloe came up behind the vampires.

Crossbow bolts and arrows flew through the alley. One of them nearly got Hunter in the thigh. She leaped off the Dumpster, landing in the shadows. The vampires, wounded and annoyed, scaled the brick wall and vanished over the rooftops. I stopped shrieking. The silence thrummed around us. My throat was raw.

Kieran rubbed his ears. “Is there blood? Am I blind?”

“Don’t you mean deaf?” I croaked.

“No.” He half smiled. “You scream louder than mere ear damage.” He nudged me, like two comrades-at-arms in a war movie. “Nice moves, Hamilton.”

“You two scared the crap out of me,” Hunter muttered from the other side of the fence.

“And what the hell’s that smell?” Chloe added. “Gross.”

“We better get out of here,” Kieran said. “League’s on the way. You know how they get when there are students around.”

“And we saw a Huntsman not far from here,” Connoly added.

“Crap. Let’s go.”

Chapter 17


“Is it true?”

The voice was so soft I barely heard it. It was coming from behind a hole in the cave wall, fitted with iron bars. It must open up into another crevice like the one I was lodged in. I sat with my back to the rock where I could keep an eye on a portion of the main lab.

“Are you really one of the Drakes?”

I slid closer to the gap. A female vampire with long brown curls matted with blood and cracked lips bent into view. They weren’t giving her enough blood, if any. I tried not to think about what would happen when the sun went down tomorrow and I woke up with a newborn’s thirst. It was nearly two years since my change, and that wasn’t nearly long enough to get by on a mouthful of blood.

“Yes,” I whispered. “It’s true.”

“You’re young, boy.” Her accent sounded Greek. “Is the other dhampir your sister?”

“Do you mean Solange?” I asked. She nodded. “Then yes.”

She was trembling all over, lightly, like an aspen leaf. Pain had made marks in her face, which was dark with dirt and streaks of burned skin, as if she’d been doused in bleach. No, not bleach. Holy water. I cursed, softly.

“You might survive, then,” she said. “If they need you.” She huddled into herself.

Prev Next
Romance | Vampires | Fantasy | Billionaire | Werewolves | Zombies