Read Stunner Online

Authors: Trina M. Lee

Tags: #Vampires, #urban fantasy, #paranormal romance, #Paranormal, #Gothic, #werewolves, #romantic urban fantasy

Stunner (4 page)


Goddamn it, you’re sexy. I
bet you’re this feisty in the sack too, aren’t you?”

After the strange encounter with him
during the Octavia incident, I didn’t know what to make of this
vampire. He had a reputation that preceded him though it was
impossible to know how much of it was based on fact. Sure he may
have let me go that night and he was damn fine to look at, but
there’s no way he could be trusted. The guy practically oozed a
snake-like charm.


Oh I’m feisty alright. But
I’m not an idiot. If you want to kill me, I’d rather you just get
it over with. Don’t make this a game.” My wolf rose up inside me,
feeling threatened. My four fangs filled my mouth, two on the top
and two on the bottom. My eyes were wolf. I could feel the beast
inside, ready to break free and tear him apart.

The smile vanished from Arys’s face.
His cool energy grew cold as ice and goosebumps broke out on my
skin in response. It tickled me inside, in places
unseen.


If I wanted you dead, I
wouldn’t have saved your ass the other night. You were a fool to
walk into that place alone. If I hadn’t been there…” he trailed
off, letting that thought go unfinished.


Why would you care whether
I live or die?” I challenged. “I’m pretty sure I don’t have a lot
of fans in the vampire community. So what gives? What could you
possibly want with me?”

I never saw him move. With inhuman
ease, he was suddenly much closer than I wanted him to be. I stood
my ground and stared into his eyes but I was ready to run. I could
handle most vampires one on one. But Arys Knight wasn’t most
vampires.


You really don’t have a
clue, do you?” In a bold move, he grabbed my hand, sliding his
fingers in between mine. “You feel that. I know you do.”

My eyes widened and my breath caught.
Power sparked in our joined hands, sending a jolt of electricity
racing up my arm. His power wasn’t an assault. Like last time, it
sought to join mine, to become something bigger.


Why are you doing this?” I
gasped. He wasn’t trying to harm me but it didn’t alleviate my
fear.


I’m not doing a damn thing,
beautiful. This is not within my control. Have you ever experienced
this before?”


No, and I don’t want to
experience it now.” I attempted to pull my hand away but he held
tight. I was growing increasingly aware of Arys’s closeness. My
stomach tightened and a strange tingle crawled through me, leaving
me flushed.

Arys’s gaze strayed to my cut lip. His
tone dropped lower, smooth with menace. “Who smacked you around
tonight?”

I tried to duck my head, to hide the
injury from his sight. “It doesn’t matter. I can take care of
myself. Really.”


Oh, right. That was made
very apparent the other night when you were bound and bleeding.”
His tone dripped sarcasm. “I must have missed the part where you
busted out the heroics and saved your own ass.”

My temper flared and with it, the power
flowing between us grew hot. I shoved away from him and this time
he released me. With the connection broken, the power fell away and
for just a second, it felt like something was missing.


I think we’re done here.”
I’d had enough of this cocky vampire. Not only was he freaking me
out, he was starting to piss me off.

He caught my arm and spun me back
around to face him. My angry protest died unspoken when he kissed
me. The silver ring in his bottom lip was smooth and cold. He
didn’t waste any time slipping his tongue between my lips. There
was a possessiveness to his kiss that thrilled me against my will.
I expected my wolf to rise up in a fury that this arrogant stranger
was so daring. Instead it lay quiet inside me, curious and more
than a little intrigued.

Damn if I wasn’t kissing him
back.
What
the hell is wrong with me?
I should be kicking his ass, or trying to, not
making time with him like a swooning schoolgirl. Oh hell, my pulse
was pounding. I fell head over heels into him, losing myself in his
intoxicating allure.

Everything about him was so new and
different. It was refreshing and I longed for more. That’s what
brought me crashing back to my senses. Something inside Arys
reached for me and something in me responded.

With a frustrated growl, I broke off
the kiss. “This is not happening. I’m starting to think the only
reason I’m alive is because you want something from me. And you
wouldn’t be the first man tonight to try to get it. I refuse to be
his whore and I sure as hell am not going to be yours.”

Arys nodded knowingly but he didn’t try
to stop me when I put distance between us. A fire smoldered in his
eyes when he said, “Any man that makes you feel like a whore isn’t
worthy of you. And if he’s the one that smacked you, then I can
only hope to get my hands on him.”

I bristled at his protective tone. “Oh,
please. You don’t know me and you don’t know a damn thing about me.
Let’s keep it that way.”


I know you better than you
think.” Arys watched calmly as I took slow but steady steps
backwards, edging away.

I heard the truth in his words and it
terrified me. I didn’t know him, didn’t think I wanted to. Yet
there was no denying the eerie feeling that something within me did
recognize him.

I needed to escape. I wasn’t
comfortable with what I was feeling. I had to leave before the
taste of him on my lips enticed me to go back for more. The
attraction to him was more than my reaction to his sinful good
looks. It went deeper than that and I wasn’t keen on finding out
why.


You need to leave me alone,
Arys,” I warned. “And you need to leave town.”

I turned my back on him, my feet moving
fast across the soft, thick grass. As I put more space between us,
the clouds in my head began to dissipate. Arys was mesmerizing. He
was downright intoxicating and that made him dangerous.


Not gonna happen, Alexa,”
he called after me. “I’m not going anywhere. And if you want to
make me, then I invite you to try. In fact, I look forward to
it.”

Without turning to look at him, I held
up a hand, flipping him the bird. His low, sexy chuckle followed me
across the park. A shiver slipped down my spine. Gritting my teeth,
I forced myself to ignore the tiny voice in my head that demanded I
go back to him.

Dangerous,
I told myself.
So very
dangerous.
The truth was that nobody had made me feel alive the way
Arys had with just one kiss. His touch held the promise of power
bigger than I could imagine. It felt so right. Therefore, it had to
be wrong.

I felt his eyes upon me long after I
left the park behind and reached the end of the street. Arys had
never been on my hit list. But now he was on my radar. Goddamn
vampires.

 

Turn the page to read chapter one from
the first book in the Alexa O’Brien Huntress Series:

 

ONCE BITTEN

 

By Trina M. Lee

 

 

Now available from Dark Mountain
Books

Chapter One

 

 

The taste of blood brought my wolf to
the surface. I snarled up into the face of the vampire and braced
for another blow. I welcomed it. The need for a good fight had my
adrenaline pumping.

My bloody lip was quickly forgotten
when the jackass grabbed me by the throat and banged my head
against the ground. Light exploded behind my eyes. I brought an
elbow up into his face before he could do it again. The crunch that
followed was satisfying.


You like to play, don’t
you, wolf?” With a backhand, he knocked the stake from my grasp and
I watched with dismay as it rolled across the parking
lot.

I followed up with a kick that
effectively threw him off me. In a leap I was on my feet, braced
and ready for him. In my mind, he was already dead. It was just a
matter of when I tired of this dance. At the moment I was enjoying
myself. His psychic attributes were weak, almost non-existent. So
he was a full on physical guy. A good brawl was just what I needed
on a hot July night.

I liked to keep things fair. I’d let it
stay physical unless he got me in a bad position. Knowing he
slaughtered Edmonton’s homeless like they were cattle fed my
eagerness for a nice, bloody beat down.

Patrick Morgan had been on my hit list
for weeks. My partner, Jez St. Claire, had accompanied me on this
hunt. I kept expecting her to jump in and help me out but she had
yet to appear from her place in the shadows.

I rushed him, faking a punch but
sweeping his legs out from beneath him with a kick instead. It
didn’t keep him down longer than a split second. He recovered fast
and came at me with fangs bared. As if he really believed he’d get
a chance to use them.

Just before he hit me, I threw my
weight forward and leaned down low, effectively tossing him over my
shoulder. I leaped on him fast, straddling him as I rained down
blow after blow. I settled for dropping punches into his face. It
wouldn’t kill him but hurting him sure felt good.


How many hits in the face
do you think you can take before there is nothing left to look at?”
I sneered with a bitter laugh. “My arms aren’t even tired yet. I
can go until sunrise.”

Twisting his body suddenly, he threw me
off, following through with a few well placed hits. I was going to
be a mess of bruises after this. The struggle for dominance ensued.
We each fought to gain leverage over the other. It was starting to
feel like a hair pulling, bitch slapping kind of fight. I needed to
take it to the next level.

He managed to put some space between us
and sprang to his feet. I followed suit, circling back to give
myself room to feel out my next attack.

The wolf’s stamina and speed carried me
when I came at him with claws ready. He moved swiftly and rather
than take his head off, I merely scratched a few deep lines in his
cheek.

Surprise glowed in his dark eyes. I
must have caught him off guard on that one. Good. I lunged again
but he was ready. He gave me a nice shove, one that lifted me off
my feet. I hit the ground hard and rolled, getting back up.
Glancing toward the stake, I made as if to move for it and the
vampire stopped me with a well placed kick.

Taking a kick to the head stunned me. I
fell to my knees, the stake just out of reach. I couldn’t go for it
and defend myself at the same time. Not when I was seeing stars. I
still had all my teeth though so it could have been
worse.

He grabbed me from behind, choking me
before I’d recovered from the blinding kick. The son of a bitch was
strong. I gasped for breath. Now might be the time to pull a
psychic attack on him. I flung a clawed hand back behind me,
groping blindly for his face. I felt the soft, vulnerable area
around his eye. Success.

The scream that tore from him when I
stabbed a sharp claw into his eye was almost feminine. It would
have been funny if things hadn’t just gone from feisty fun to death
match. He released me immediately.

Blood poured down his face. His eye was
a mangled mess. Rage rolled off him in giant waves. I never gave
him the chance to recover. Lunging swiftly, I snatched the stake up
and threw all of my weight at him. I hit him in the chest and we
both went down. I called forth just enough power to help me hold
him.

I still hadn’t mastered my abilities
despite having been born with them. What had started as basic
telekinesis and energy manipulation had evolved over time. Becoming
a werewolf had done nothing to hinder my power. In some ways, it
seemed to enhance it. As far as I knew, I was the only living
werewolf to possess power so close to that of a vampire.

Patrick Morgan gave a loud, angry cry
and fought hard to throw me off. “Fucking bitch! I’m not going to
beg.”


Good. It’s probably better
if you don’t go out like a pussy.”

With a perfectly timed head butt, he
regained the advantage. I was skidding across the pavement before I
could block the next hit. My back slammed against a parked car,
knocking the breath from me. I braced, expecting him to try to
finish me off. But when I looked up, he was just a blur in the
distance.

He ran?
Coward.


Jez!” I shouted. In an
attempt to stop him, I threw an energy ball, striking him dead
center in the back.

He went down hard. Jez was a blur of
black as she moved with supernatural speed. Bursting forth from the
shadows, she was on top of Morgan before he could recover. I don’t
think he realized he’d been impaled until the hilt of her knife was
pressed against the base of his throat.

Blood poured from the wound. Jez
continued to wiggle and grind the blade. The vampire struggled to
speak through crimson lips as blood flowed out of his
mouth.


Do you like that?” Jez
growled into his face.

Her golden hair had fallen free of her
hair clip, her brilliant green eyes were pure cat. Morgan just
stared into those leopard eyes in horror. I guessed that he’d never
encountered a werecat before. They weren’t nearly as common as
werewolves.

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