Faint sounds of caroling grated on his last nerve as he paced back and forth
beside her bed. Silent night his ass. The bloodlust raging through him was unbearably strong. His stomach rolled as he swallowed hard, his mouth watering to bite her, hisbody desperate to make love to her. Fear, a horrid waste of an emotion, and one usually unfamiliar to a vampire, seized him, held his muscles tight, bound him within his own desires.
It was a natural occurrence this night, Christmas Eve, for a peace to fall over
the human run earth. As a vampire in love, one facing his humanity in a big way, peace couldn’t touch him.
The spill of Shianna’s chestnut colored curls picked up the golden hue of the
light from the fire. She made a move like she was shivering, tossing and turning in her sleep until she was facing him. Pulling the covers tighter around her, Daniel wanted to cuddle her body into his. The even pace of her shallow breathing was like a heartbeat, reminding him of what he’d taken from her. She’d been sleeping in a lot lately, hours into the evening, but that wasn’t unheard of for a new vamp as they adjusted to their new body, their new diet, their new life.
It’d been over a month since that fateful night he’d been forced to do the
unthinkable, turn her into a vampire to save her life. Approaching midnight this
Christmas Eve, he felt like a wretched villain. Somewhere out there people were missing her as the holiday approached. As far as her human family knew, she’d disappeared during a violent crime at the ski lodge she’d been vacationing at. She was trapped now in his life, in a cabin high in the mountains right above that lodge.
Christmas approached as fast as the snow falling hard outside. What present did he have to give her but meaningless novelties: clothes, a book, a CD, and other luxury items that he was sure she would like. None of those items though would give her back what he’d taken from her. Well, he wasn’t the one who injured her beyond the point she could be saved, but he was the one who’d sucked her gingerbread, sweet and spicy, blood from her body and had replaced it with his own. He’d had no choice to save her, but who knew if she’d wanted to be saved into this life. Of course she’d tried to make him feel better about it a dozen or so times, but his guilty dead heart just wasn’t up for believing it yet.
His hand hovered over her head, gripped into a fist and then pulled back to his lap to keep from waking her. Memories attacked him now. Several weeks ago, Black Friday to be exact, a council of Vampire Lords had been meeting nearby when the call came in about rogues in his district. He was lord over the northeastern region of his state, over more land than most given regions were divided up by density of vampires per humans. Here in the mountains, people per square feet was a lower number than the number of lords needed in the denser populated cities.
Sitting in the meetings discussing rearranging the amount of vampire warriors
in certain areas due to a new growth of land developments, a text had come with an alert. Those who chose to offer their help raced to his locale, followed him as he easily navigated the land he was native to, had resided over for some two hundred years. Running back, the many houses already decorated with brightly colored bulbs of various colors, at the speed he traveled, made the scenery around him look like what he imagined a bad acid trip would. But then getting home, looking down on part of his turf, it’d looked more like the massacre before Christmas. Fresh spilled blood had been melting the snow, rogue vampires had been lunching on tourists, the screams had been
real, bone chilling, beyond anything he’d ever heard as they’d echoed off the mountains.
The group of vampire lords had paused at the peaks of the slopes, circling
the valley where the ski lodge sat. The scene, Christmas trees having just gone up that weekend, the brightly colored lights turning the blanket of fresh fallen snow into something more like a marquee, had been beautiful when he’d left a few hours before. No longer was that the case, except her was blown away by the support he had here with him.
As he’d nodded, and the vampire lords leapt from their peaks into the valley for a surprise attack on the rogues, he’d counted ten of them including himself. The moment had been his miracle for the season. The six rogues had been quickly taken under control, but still the shrieking and the police sirens had continued. A man in a Santa hat had laid dead at his feet. They had later called it an animal attack, of course. The humans, so predictable in their fearful and therefore false explanations, always did. The dead rogue vamps, their dust had been quickly buried under the snow. In the chaos which had
ensued, the blood on the snow glistening with the police spotlights like misshapen but shiny, red-icy, Christmas decorations had enthralled him as much as it sickened him. This was all before he’d heard a whimper, a strangled sound of someone who had blood filling their lungs. Last gurgled breaths called to him like a siren’s song. No Twelve Days of Christmas, no Silent Night, just the off beat of a desperate struggle for air.
Following the noise, he’d found her behind a line of snowmobiles, a beautiful
young woman, say mid-twenties, her neck savagely ripped apart, blood matting the long chestnut curls of her hair. Blood had been all over her actually. Her clothes were soaked, the snow around her saturated. It’d made him sick, literally his stomach had clenched then rolled. Seeing how one of his kind had played with their food, bitten her in many places, ripping off chunks of skin like an animal would, had really been too much even for him at that moment.
There had been a second when this dying person had rolled her head to the side and opened her eyes. Just some sort of instinct of the body, not really seeing him, but her green and gold eyes had sparkled, fresh tears glistening in the Christmas lights.
Something in him had broken.
Without another thought he’d forced his own blood down her throat, taken what she had left of hers for himself. The process started, he’d picked her up and raced back to his own cabin, his new and lovely vampire in his arms.
This last month he’d trained her, to feed, to control her blood lust, about day
sleep, about everything he could think of that she would need to know to become a worthwhile vampire, one who could give back to the community she lived in rather than take from it.
What she’d taught him though was so much more. She’d shown him that he could be worthy of love again, the way she doted on him, took care of him, the monster who had transformed her life without asking if she wanted it. Of course, there hadn’t been that opportunity, but again, he’d just turned her. And. Miracle of all holiday miracles, she’d been grateful rather than resistant, never complaining of the life she would miss as a human.
He wondered though if her sweet nature was making her lie to him. If on
Christmas Eve of all nights, she would wake soon, and miss whatever family occasion she would’ve usually been apart of. Like she’d heard him, she opened her eyes.
“You’re too hard on yourself, Daniel. I’ve been telling the truth. I was a misfit,
misunderstood, by family and my few friends really. I won’t miss the crazy and tense Christmases with my human family. I have you. And, although I know I need to move on soon, find a place of my own, I look forward to spending this Christmas with my maker.”
“Reading minds? An invasion of privacy. I thought I taught you better,” Daniel
teased, a front as he stiffened wondering what else she’d heard him think.
“I know. But, when I started to open my eyes, seeing the look in yours, that pouty, far off look like you were contemplating the weight of the world, I figured one listen couldn’t hurt. Forgive me. I just…I just wanted to know if you were thinking of me.”
“Of course I was. You want to spend this day with me? I know I am the only
vampire you know right now. But, soon you will meet more. I will introduce you. And, you will want to move out on your own, with the new or the young vamps, not with an old man like me, turned in my early forties a few hundred years ago,” Daniel interjected.
“Maybe I do want to stay with you. Maybe I do want more. You do. Okay.
Confession. I’ve read your mind a few times these past few days. Chalk it up to new vampire indiscretions if you must. But I know that you want me, though you have this silly guilt hanging over you for turning me. Honestly, I don’t feel a monster. I feel strong. I feel better, like the weight of my old world has been lifted from my shoulders. And, I want to celebrate this Christmas with you, and I mean really with you. I want to ring in the new year kissing you.”
She sat up then, her eyes locked with his, searching, questioning, as she touched his chest. Her cold hand had burned him, made him think he had a beating heart again. Something pulsed within him anyway. Her words rang through his ears like the bells of Christmas. Really with you… Could it mean?
She moved in closer. Slowly, her lips inches toward his as if she was waiting to
see if he would push her away. He didn’t but there were matters to be addressed.
“You’ve never been with a man like me,” Daniel hissed out.
“Not a vampire. No. But I have been with a man. How different can it be?”
“It’s rough. Intense. Your new strength, the bloodlust, all things to content with as your body rages out of control.”
“Yeah. It’s like being a virgin all over again. I kind of like the idea of my first
time being on Christmas Eve. Take me before the clock strikes midnight. I’m ready.”
He growled, low in his chest, his unused lungs rumbling with his need, his desire for her. It’d been consuming him, the wanting, the holding back. Now, to be able to take her, to make her his own, well it seemed too good to be true.
Her lips touched his gently at first. He knew she was still questioning how he
would react. On the other hand, she knew, the wretched little minx having listened to his thoughts, how much he wanted her.
He gave her an answer by grabbing her hair in his fist, crushing his lips down on hers. Her body he shortly had pinned under his. I don’t have it in me any longer to hold back, nor do I have it in me to go slow. Not this time. Forgive me,” he sighed in her ear, the sound of his deep voice rough, breathy.
“Again, no need to ask for forgiveness. I have to have you. Take me, and take me fast.”
Seconds later she cried out as he shredded their clothes from their bodies. She
lay there gloriously naked underneath him. His body pressed hard against hers, his hips between her thighs, his erection already poised at her opening. Daniel moved just a little, a test to see if she was wet enough for his bodies invasion.
She was. He pushed in, her inner walls gripping at him, encouragement his cock didn’t need but welcomed.
“I’m going to bite you, take you over the edge. Hold on babe,” he warned.
Feeling her fingers dig into his back, he leaned down and bit her in the fleshy area just above her breasts. She arched her back as his fangs pierced her skin, pushing her hard nipple against him. A long draw of blood made him light-headed, made his dick pulse inside her as he thrust it in and out of her body, hard, relentless in his need for her.
She screamed as she came, her body milking him, a tight warm glove drawing
out every ounce of pleasure within him. Another draw of blood, another thrust, she came again, trembled around him.
Lifting his head from her breast, he forced his neck to her mouth.
“Bite me, babe.”
Shianna hesitated a second, but he pushed into her again. As he watched her, their faces so close together, the next thrust of his cock inside her made her gasp. Then her fangs pierced his skin, right on his shoulder. He felt her suck the blood from his body as she’d done so greedily, yet so unknowing the night he’d turned her. How since that night had he dreamed of having her feed from him again, but intentionally, intimately like now.
Her body quaked underneath his, and he hardened again. Retracting her fangs after just a few sips, the glazed over look of ecstasy on her face made him let go completely, spill his undead seed into her. Orgasms took them both, each look in each other’s eyes sending them spiraling higher.
The carolers got closer. While still far off, they were houses closer, louder in
his ear. The song, Silent Night, the one they’d been singing over and over again as they moved from house to house, got to him. This time though, in her arms, in her body, spent and still quaking from the shared experience, the words started to warm him, make sense.
Whether there was a god out there for the likes of them, he would never know. But, it did seem a holy night, one he would revere the rest of his life, the one where he chose a true mate which he knew her in his heart to be now.
Calm, bright, tender, mild, the words all had such renewed meaning. He saw
love’s pure light in her face, and knew it was his redeeming grace.
Kiki Howell's giveaway is the winner's choice of one of her many wonderful stories, due to timing issues with her original choice.
Is This Christmasy?
I have a friend who has written an encyclopedia on Christmas TV. We’ve talked several times about why some people watch holiday shows (and I bring this up because I feel it is the same with holiday books). Our conclusion in part is our addiction to being reminded that in this world miracles can happen, love can be true, and all other sorts of sappy ideas the we love. What it boils down to though, we think anyway, is using this time of year, its shows and books and all, to renew our faith in mankind. But, there are also the specials and movies where Christmas is the setting, and that is about as Christmasy as it gets.
The rest of the show doesn’t really lend itself to the holiday so much due to the plot or whatever. For example, in my friend’s encyclopedia and her companion guide ("Tis the Season TV: The Encyclopedia of Christmas-themed Episodes, Specials and Made-for-TV Movies, and "The Christmas TV Companion: A Guide to Cult Classics, Strange Specials and Outrageous Oddities" by Joanna Wilson) she talks about many macabre movies, etc that are set at Christmas time.
Myself, I’m a paranormal author and reader. I like dark otherworldly tales as much as I like all the Christmas ones. So is it possible to mix my favorite genre with my favorite holiday? Can I mesh the dark with happy holiday ending? I think so. I just recently reviewed an anthology for Suspense Magazine which was four vampire Christmas tales ( A Vampire for Christmas (Sweetblood #2.5) by Laurie London, Michele Hauf, Caridad Piñeiro, Alexis Morgan) I really loved the way the authors took the dark and
the bloody and the violent and set it all at Christmas time. Not only were people killed, bloodlust given into, but also there were lights glistening and cookies baked. Most importantly though, in the end, after all the killing and whatnot, there was a Christmas-themed Happy Ever After ending. I am so a happy camper reading such stories.
So when I got my 12 Days of Naughty Giveaways story theme as the 10 Lords A Leaping, my mind went immediately to ten vampire lords, and I wondered if I could pull off the same mix of the bright holiday and the dark lives of vampires. So, here it is, my 10 Lords A Leaping Story for the 12 Days of Naughty Giveaways, One Silent Night. I hope you like it.
As far as the giveaway goes, I have a Christmas free read called, Spirit, Yet To Come, a paranormal erotic romance short inspired by the Dicken’s A Christmas Carol which I will send a PDF of to anyone who comments and leaves and email address in their comment. Find out what happens when the Spirit of Christmases Yet to Come falls in love with his charge… Also, one winner will be chosen who will get their choice of one of my stories in PDF format. All stories are listed at my website at http://www.kikihowell.com/2010/06/stories.html
All you have to do is leave your email address and a comment with your answer to the following question:
What is the best way to get on to Santa's Naughty List?
All those who leave their email address will receive a copy of Spirit Yet To Come, and the lucky overall winner will be notified either by myself or by Kiki on the 23rd Decemeber.