Hunger Awakened

By: Dee Carney

Prologue


“He’ll know of you sooner or later. He might come looking for you.”

“Who?”

“What happened to the left-for-dead? He wouldn’t have allowed himself to be taken.”

“Who? Oh, him.” John Doe. She shrugged. “Taken away in an ambulance not too long after the incident. What do you mean he’ll know of me?”

“You’re his kindred now. You carry something like a genetic marker that will make him aware of you.”

What did it matter? “So?”

Corin walked to the accent chair by her vanity and sat. “We live a very, very long time. Not a life of immortality as fiction would have you believe, but long enough to grow bored and restless. If he’s mature, he might not care. Maybe he’ll come after you just to satisfy some curiosity and merely watch from afar.

“Or he’ll come after you because he’s angry. Intentional or not, he’s broken a law and there will be consequences for that. He might take that anger out on you.”

—Hunger Aroused





Chapter One

The only reason he noticed her was because of the depth of despair shining from deep-set blue eyes. Hunched against the side of a red brick wall, she looked a little too thin. Hungry in a way that didn’t remind him of food. The poor woman might have been attractive in her day, but her pale skin seemed to have lost a little of its luster. Just like those horribly sad eyes.

Something about her intrigued him though. Almost enough to make him forget about going inside, where already the scent of the nightlife called to him. The smell of densely packed bodies. Lust. Sin. As he waffled, those enticements made up his mind for him.

He’d come to the nightclub to get laid. Period.

Bast Kent strode inside without bothering to look back, the woman and her haunted eyes forgotten within seconds.

Ignoring the seductive looks a few women gave him on the way in, he went straight to the bar, twisting in between bodies that bumped and gyrated. Touched and fondled. Danced, so they called it.

Laying a crisp hundred on the spit-shined wooden surface drew the attention of a bartender without having to open his mouth to back it up. Benjamin was always a good friend to have in a place like this. A place he didn’t frequent often. There were better venues for finding willing booty. But he had his pick of slurries in a club. And slurries were so much easier to bleed... “Armadale. Neat.”

The blonde woman tilted her chin and filled the drink order without saying a word to him. At the same time she stopped pouring with her right hand, she used her left to palm the c-note.

He slammed down the vodka, savoring the smooth burn of alcohol sliding down his throat and heating his belly. If he needed another, he’d return, but with as much adrenaline pulsing through him tonight, he wanted to get sexed up sooner rather than later. No pretending he was interested in buying anyone a drink of any kind, especially not a Goddamned cosmopolitan. Definitely no small talk about what she did for a living or what she liked to do for fun. Just one good, long fuck. In the club’s restroom, in her car, her place. Whatever.

Bast searched through the writhing bodies of people on the dance floor, looking for just the right woman to bed that night. A human, preferably.

His teeth pulsed with a familiar ache, and his favorite appendage thickened at the impatient prospect of a long night of sweaty sex and decadent feeding. For whatever reason, his libido had kicked into high gear over the past couple of weeks and in this past week particularly. No matter how many times he alleviated the problem himself, he never felt relieved. So, if his own hand wasn’t going to solve the problem, he might as well let a woman with legs from here to eternity solve it for him.

No, this place wasn’t his scene, but it would serve the purpose. Undulating bodies moved like liquid to the beat of the blaring music. He scented their perspiration and a heady mix of alcohol and sex on the dance floor. A subtle haze of fresh blood drifted to him from time to time and he knew he wasn’t the only vampire on the hunt here. A lot of the humans were already so high or inebriated with alcohol, they were ripe for picking. Low-lying fruit on a tree.

And Bast was so hungry.

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