by Ravyn Wilde
Creatures of Myth Book One
Vampire slayer Jane Nichols just killed the bloodsucking fiend who murdered her best friend, Marissa. Her BFF had been a vampire, and recently altered Jane’s prejudiced view of the supernatural world. Enough to acknowledge that not all creatures of myth were evil. Devastated by the loss of her friend, when Marissa’s brother demands to meet her, she travels to the Florida coast—intending to ignore the vampire and recuperate in the sun. Jane discovers that Ricardo has a body to die for. This hot vampire might just be the one to take her mind off her work and Rissa’s death, at least at night.
Ricardo De’Angel is not a vampire, he’s so much more. The beguiling and lovely Jane has innocently set them on a quest, one that must be completed before the next full moon. Ricardo vowed long ago to never to love another mortal. While he’s tempted by Jane, he has no intention of enjoying more than her body.
Jane and Ricardo struggle to complete their quest for undying magic, unaware that destiny, with a little help from a friend, started them on this path. Along the way, can Ricardo get over his obsession with Jane’s mortality and embrace the love she offers?
Note: This story was originally released by Ellora’s Cave in 2006. It has been newly edited and enhanced.
Genre: Erotic Paranormal RomanceNote: This title is no longer available as a single title. It is now part of the Magic & Myth anthology. Check out the special offer below.
Content/Theme(s): Vampires, Magic
Release Date: October 16, 2016
Special offer, Excerpt & More
After the first three drinks, Jane went back to her room and unpacked the container holding Rissa’s ashes.
She hadn’t been thinking very clearly the night Rissa was killed. Vampires disintegrate to chunky dust within a few moments, the speed of decomposition tied to the number of years they were “alive.” Marissa had been a vampire for over a hundred years, so the transition from friend to ashes hadn’t taken more than sixty seconds.
Devastated by the loss of her friend and eager to find Marcus to exact revenge, Jane still realized that she couldn’t just leave the ashes to be cleaned away by the landlord. So she searched Rissa’s apartment for something to hold the remains. Initially, all she could find with an airtight lid was a Tupperware container. Since she couldn’t imagine putting what used to be her friend inside the almost see-through plastic, she was ecstatic when she discovered another solution.
Jane hadn’t remembered seeing the urn she found on display in Rissa’s bedroom. But, she figured it didn’t matter where the beautiful cobalt blue pottery came from. Just that it was perfect for holding Rissa’s remains. The unusually heavy urn had a lid that fastened with a wire hinge and closed with old-fashioned effectiveness. Tentatively she opened the top, hoping nothing or no one else was inside. Later she would reinforce the seal by dipping the entire top half of the pot in wax.
She returned to the beach, placing Rissa’s urn in the sand beside her chair. She held a quiet, one-sided conversation with her friend, carefully making sure she wasn’t overheard. As she sat there, Jane steadily surrounded the pretty blue pot with a forest of palm tree garnish holders. Pushing the green plastic picks into the sand as fast as she could consume the drinks.
The alcohol and the sun did their jobs. Jane relaxed completely, her grief deadened and her thoughts centered on remembered fun and secrets shared with a best friend. Thinking about ordering another drink and staying on the beach to watch the stars come out, she turned her head a little and realized someone stood right behind her lounge chair.
She never went anywhere unarmed. It was a simple thing to slide her hand into her beach tote and wrap her fingers around the handle of the six-inch knife.
After jumping up and whirling to face the intruder, she tripped over her own feet. When she finally untangled herself, Jane waved a long roll of candy in the man’s face. Even in her present state, she felt embarrassed. The knife remained in her bag…probably a good thing.
Once she could focus on the man, she had to work hard to keep her mouth closed. Gorgeous didn’t even scratch the surface. Unless the alcohol turned ugly into appealing, this blonde and muscular man was a contender for craving of the year. Starting at his bare feet and taking note of his long toes, she shifted her gaze upward and catalogued the man’s many and varied assets along the way. He wore long shorts, so the muscular calves were well displayed, his thighs were covered and unfortunately the shorts weren’t tight enough to get any idea of the size and breadth of his manly dimensions.
But his bare chest with its small V of golden hair could win awards. This man defined ripped and she crossed her fingers he wasn’t a steroid user. She didn’t want to touch and have him completely uninterested or unable to return the favor. She definitely wanted to offer her services as tanning lotion applier before anyone else at the resort got the chance. As she glanced up and met his gaze, she sucked in a breath of surprise.
One look at his ageless, mossy green eyes and she knew without a doubt who stood before her with a slight smirk on his face.
At his nod, she exhaled a sigh of relief. She wouldn’t be joining Rissa in death tonight.
Either from the booze or maybe because his eyes remind reminded her so much of Rissa, she started to chatter. “You’re lucky my reflexes are a little off after all the Tropical Storms I’ve been through today. Pick your sister up out of the sand, I’m afraid in my condition I might drop her. Good piece of advice, never sneak up on a vampire hunter. Unless the vampire hunter has consumed close to a dozen Tropical Storms, in which case you might be safe. I don’t know. I think I had almost a dozen, count Rissa’s forest for me, will you?” She waved at the urn and watched him turn and tilt his gorgeous head to one side. His hair fell to his shoulders in a slight wave, definitely worth a glance or two. He frowned at her.
When he didn’t say anything, she continued. “I need a shower, food and maybe a power snooze. I need at least a gallon of black coffee. Follow me home and you can stow the urn and we will talk. Fair warning—if you don’t put a shirt on I’ll be exploring your skin with my tongue before the night is over. Isn’t it a little hot out? I never drink this much. I have a limit of two beverages a night. But I’m on vacation. My butt hurts, my heart hurts and I positively don’t care if some nasty creature is out there waiting for me to turn them to dust. I’m on va-ca-tion,” her voice went sing-songy.
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