Kiss of the Dhampir (excerpt)

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic


This is an excerpt from my novel Kiss of the Dhampir, which is available as an ebook and paperback, everywhere these formats are sold.

Submitted: May 15, 2018

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Submitted: May 15, 2018

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There is a legend: A female dhampir will come, an accomplished vampire killer, a woman of incredible beauty, power and intelligence, who will find her destined mate among the vampires. He will be a man of magnetism, of sensuality and power, enough to match the dhampir, perhaps even stronger. He will be immune to her powers and she will be immune to his. And they will love each other, beyond all doubt, beyond all reason. One will die for the other and the survivor will go on, with all the powers of both, the most powerful being ever to walk the earth.

Marissa was raised by the Daybreak Society to slay vampires, and she excelled at it. She never met a vampire that she couldn’t defeat. Not one ever laid a hand on her, not one ever got a fang into her. She was secure in the knowledge that no vampire could hurt her, and that she was doing what was right. Then, on the night that was supposed to be her happiest, a horrific betrayal shattered her world. On the run from the people who raised her, she continued her calling—hunting and slaying the undead. But when she meets the vampire Gabriel, the attraction between them is immediate and irresistible. Can she ignore a lifetime of training, and everything she believes, to love a vampire?
 

Excerpt:

She was born during the worst storm that Nurse Iris had ever seen. Lighting split the sky and thunder rumbled, shaking the building furiously. It was as though nature itself was protesting her emergence into the world. When they held the baby up so that her dying mother could see her, the woman smiled weakly and reached a shaking hand toward her.

“Marissa,” she breathed. “I’m so sorry. I love you.”

Nurse Iris watched the poor woman take her last breath, then cuddled the infant against her chest. Marissa had yet to cry, but her huge blue eyes were surveying the room, giving Iris the chilling feeling that the baby was aware of what was going on around her.

“What do we do, doctor?” she asked, her voice low.

The doctor took hold of the dead woman’s chin and turned her head, examining the scars on her pale throat. “There is no mistaking what did this,” he muttered, almost to himself. “I can’t understand why the baby is female.”

Nurse Iris waited while the doctor leaned closer and squinted at the scars again, touched them, then straightened up. Still, he didn’t answer her.

“Doctor?”

He glanced at her as though just remembering she was there. “Clean her up,” he ordered. “Feed her. I’ll go speak to Director Reece and see what is to be done.”

He pulled his bloody surgical garb off and dropped it on the floor. At the door he glanced back at the dead woman and the unusual baby cradled in Nurse Iris’s arms, then left to go tell the Director. It was not a task he savored. He knew the Director was going to be angry, and that someone would have to pay. The doctor sincerely hoped that it wouldn’t be him.

Director Reece’s office was dark. The doctor knocked once, then went in without being invited. He knew he was expected. The chair was turned away from the desk, its occupant staring out the window at the rain.

“So we finally found one,” Reece said softly.

“I’m sorry, sir,” the doctor started, then plunged on. “It’s a girl.”

Silence followed the doctor’s amazing statement, then the chair turned slowly and Reece stared at him. “A girl?” he demanded. “How is that possible?”

“I don’t know, sir.”

“Are you certain of the child’s paternity?”

“No doubt about it,” the doctor asserted. “I saw the scars myself.”

“I’ve never heard of a girl being born from such a union,” Reece said softly.

“What should we do with her?” the doctor asked, amazed that his voice was still steady, even though his entire body was starting to shake.

Reece was silent for a moment. “Keep her,” he finally answered. “We’ll raise her, educate her, and train her as if she was the boy we’d expected. Maybe she’ll surprise us.”

The doctor nodded stiffly. “Yes sir,” he said, and turned to leave.

“And doctor?”

His blood ran cold, but he turned back. “Yes sir?”

“Next time, you’d better not fail me.”

“Yes sir.” The doctor stepped out of the office and fled.

Reece settled back into his chair, his hands folded thoughtfully in his lap, and contemplated the amazing turn of events. In all his years, he’d never heard of a girl being born under such circumstances. For the innocent baby now nestled comfortably in the care of the Daybreak Society was the daughter of a human woman—and a vampire.

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Some members of the Daybreak Society were not aware of the amazing turn of events that had occurred that rainy night. They believed the Society was just what it said it was: a non-profit organization dedicated to helping homeless, destitute and abused women and children. It was a rare institution in late 1890s London, but it was thriving. Director Reece was very influential, and he had dedicated most of his own fortune to the running of the Society.

Then there were the members who knew the secret behind that innocuous cover story—that the Daybreak Society had been founded to fight the undead. The deaths of destitute, homeless and abused women and children were most often the best indicator of vampiric activity because they were often the preferred victims. They were easier to subdue, easier to hide, and usually not missed.

When Marissa’s mother went to the Society for help, she’d unknowingly delivered her daughter into the hands of crusaders. They’d been waiting for one such as Marissa to be born, but usually the child of a vampire and human woman was a boy so no one was quite sure of what to expect from Marissa. Would she have any powers? Would she use them to destroy vampires as a boy would have done? Or would the mere fact that she was female bring disaster to the Society? Still, they accepted Director Reece’s decision without question. His word was law as far as they were concerned. And they also realized that one of her kind was so rare that most would probably never see another born in their lifetimes.

Aside from all that, Marissa was a beautiful baby. She had ebony hair and the bluest eyes most of the Society had ever seen. Her features were delicate, her skin alabaster. She turned out to be a solemn infant, too. She would quietly watching the women work around her, as though she was absorbing everything they did, following their every movement with those crystal eyes. As she grew, she remained so observant and quiet that people would often forget she was in the room and have adult conversations within her hearing, things they would never have said with a child about.

So she grew up, unnoticed and yet the center of attention. Ignored, yet watched more than any girl should be. As promised by Reece, the Society paid for the best tutors that could be found and she was encouraged to stretch her mind, learn everything she could. She was very intelligent and quick to learn. They discovered that she had an affinity for languages, and by the time she was sixteen she could speak three in addition to English. She absorbed any information given to her like a sponge.

At the same time that her mind was being expanded, her body was being trained. From the moment she could walk the Society brought in martial arts experts to teach the toddler. She showed a natural aptitude for that as well, and she quickly became better than most of her tutors, which amazed her caretakers, and yet frightened them as well. Would they be able to control her as she reached adulthood? What if she realized her own power, her own abilities, and rebelled? They were training her to be a killer. Was she their doom? Or would she be their salvation?

Only time would tell.

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If you enjoyed the excerpt, you can find Kiss of the Dhampir as both an e-book and a paperback. It is a standalone novel, though I have been asked for a sequel. I don't have one planned, but you never know what the future holds.

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Kiss of the Dhampir contains adult situations, violence (including references to rape), and is recommended for 18 years old and over.


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