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Authors: Gail Koger

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checked the security monitor. Great; it was Heather De Luca. She was wearing a

micromini evening dress that exposed her varicose veins and cellulite-dimpled thighs.

Oh, gross. She wasn’t wearing any underwear.

I stiffened. Her eyes had an eerie red glow to them.

Grams stated the obvious.
“She is possessed.”

“And when did that happen?”

“Does it matter? She is here for the medallion.”

CATCHING DRAGOS | 43

“And to fuck Fabian.”
An insatiable need to kill the monster grew within me.
“The

only thing she’s getting is a one-way ride to hell.”

“Excellent! You have accepted your destiny,”
Grams stated happily.

Not exactly. This was a one-time deal.

The demon rang the doorbell again. “Fabian, my love, it’s me, Heather.”

I ran into the kitchen and grabbed my special box of salt.
“Anything else I need,

Grams?”

“Your sword.”

“I have it right here.”
I patted my pocket.

Grams groaned.
“Fabian is a master swordsman. You actually thought you could defeat

him?”

“Yep.”

“Antonio is the only one with the skills to beat Fabian.”

“No. He isn’t.”
I poured a circle of salt around Fabian’s unconscious form. A

demon couldn’t cross blessed salt.

The doors rattled violently. The demon rumbled, “Open the doors, or I will huff

and puff and blow them down.”

I shouted back, “The three little piggies aren’t home. Come back later.”

“Do not taunt the demon,”
Grams instructed curtly.

Stepping into the circle of salt, I tucked the hex box under my arm and chanted a

protection spell.
“Gallice scripta habetur. Nec facile et utilora.”

Boom!
The doors flew open. Heather had morphed into a monstrosity with six-

inch fangs and claws. Her evening dress was hiked up around her waist.

Vomit rose in my throat. Red wormy things crawled over her pussy. Was it a form

of demonic trichinosis? “You really need to see a doctor about that.”

Heather pointed a talon at me. “Give me the hunter, and I will let you live.”

Grams gasped.
“She’s wearing the Eye of Brahma.”

44
|
GAIL KOGER

My gaze flew to the black diamond ring adorning her finger. It pulsed with

malignant life. My God, it was the soul taker. It harvested human souls to be used in

black magic rituals.

“Give me the Eye, and I’ll let you live.” I pulled my itty-bitty sword.

A hideous hissing laugh sounded from the creature. “You expect to slay me with

that?”

“It
is
a magical sword,” I replied.

Heather cackled. “I cannot be killed. I will live for an eternity.”

“Okay, how about I just send you to hell instead?
Dicitur pretiosa materia
.”
Poof!

My sword was normal size.

In a lightning-fast move, I whacked off her ring finger and yanked out the

medallion. “
Transferam succinte potuero
.”

A swirling black vortex opened under Heather’s feet. She sank her claws into the

wall in a desperate attempt to keep from being sucked into hell.

I pointed my sword at Heather. “
Tacitos abeu intereo
.” A blinding white light struck

the demon, yanking her claws out of the wall.

Heather’s shrieks joined the wails of the damned as she tumbled down the vortex.

Ugh. The stench of sulfur was overwhelming.
“Ah. How do I close it?”


Transferam succinte obturo
.”

I repeated, “
Transferam succinte obturo
.”

The gateway to hell closed.

“Ding dong, the evil hag is gone.” I did a happy dance.

“Your lack of knowledge about basic spell casting will get you killed,”
Grams lectured.

“When I took this job, I wasn’t expecting to be dealing with demons.”

“You’re a slayer.”

“I’m the Judge,”
I corrected.

CATCHING DRAGOS | 45

“It is your destiny, Mariah.”

Well, destiny could suck wind.
“I made Dad a promise that I would stay out of the

slaying business. I like what I’m doing, and I’m good at it.”

“The family needs you.”
There was a hint of tears in Grams’s voice.

My grandmother, the master manipulator.
“Nice try, Grams.”

“Admit it. You enjoyed sending Heather to hell.”

“Okay, you got me. I did, but it was a one-time deal.”

“There will be more demons. At least let me train you. I don’t want to bury you too,”

Grams pleaded.

I threw up my hands in defeat. I didn’t want to die. My mother’s death still

haunted my dad. I couldn’t subject him to that kind of pain again. If I had been on my

own, there was a good chance Heather would have won.
“I’ll start slayer training

tomorrow. But I’m keeping my day job.”

“As you wish.”
The tears were back.

Smothering a groan, I looked around for the Eye of Brahma.
“Rats. Where’s the

ring?”

“Fabian has it,”
Grams answered.

“What?”
I spun around. Sure enough, Fabian had it clutched in his left hand. I put

my sword to his throat. “Playing possum, huh? Give me the finger.”

A feral gleam in his eyes, Fabian flipped me the bird.

“Har. Har.” I poked his groin with the tip of my sword. “Drop it. Now. Or your

playboy days are over.”

Fabian tossed the rapidly decaying finger at my feet. “Who are you?”

“I’m the girl who kicked your ass.”

Grams sighed in exasperation.
“Why do you deliberately provoke him?”

46
|
GAIL KOGER

“’Cause it’s fun.”
I wrapped the finger in a tissue and carefully placed it in the hex

box. I grinned at Fabian’s furious expression. “Don’t worry, honey, I’ll properly dispose

of the cursed items.”

A red wormy thing wiggled along the salt line. I stomped on it. “Oh, and you

might want to get yourself tested for STDs. Heather was infested with demonic

worms.”

“I don’t fuck demons.” Fabian snarled, struggling to rise.

“When things start rotting off, don’t say I didn’t warn ya.”

“I will find you and when I do—”

“Yeah. Yeah. I know. A bullet between the eyes.”

Fabian smiled.

The hair on the back of my neck stood on end. That was the scariest smile I’d ever

seen.

“No. I’m going to lick your pussy until you’re screaming my name and begging

me for more.” Fabian’s voice was low and purposefully seductive as he slowly

unzipped his jeans.

And just like that, my panties were soaked. It had to be some kind of animalistic

attraction. “You’re not my type.”

Fabian purred, “I’m exactly your type, and one night in my bed will prove it.”

Incredulous, I cocked an eyebrow. “Wow. Is that supposed to be romantic? ‘Cause

it ain’t doing it for me.”

There was a hint of frustration in Fabian’s eyes as he eased his jeans down an inch.

“You were watching me. Thinking of how I would taste, how I would feel deep inside

you. Admit it. You want me.”

There was something about him that called to me, but a girl had to have some

pride. “Right, that’s why I gargled with my special mouthwash. To attract you. God,

you’re kinda pathetic.”

CATCHING DRAGOS | 47

Fabian wiggled his hips, and his anything-but-pathetic erection sprang out. “I’m

going to slide my cock into your tight channel and fuck you all night long.”

My clit throbbed. Dear God, I was in so much trouble. I took a deep breath and

fought down my growing arousal. Okay, he had an awesome dick, but I was a

professional. I could handle this.

“I’m sure demons and old ladies want some of that, but I don’t.” With that parting

shot, I headed for the door. The hunter wasn’t in any shape to stop me.

Fabian snapped his fingers. “Damn. You’re the missing Vizzini slayer.”

I froze.
“How could he possibly know that, Grams?

“Aphrodite, the slut.”

Crap. The traitorous bitch had shacked up with a Dragos hunter before a demon

ate her. I turned to face him. “What do you want?”

“You.”

I wanted to smack that obnoxious smirk off Fabian’s face. “Honey, it’s never

gonna happen.”

Implacable resolve stamped on his face, Fabian retorted, “I will have you in my

bed by the end of the week.”

It was Thursday. What an arrogant prick.

“Fabian is trying to stall you,”
Grams warned.

Damn. She was right. My eyes narrowed on Fabian’s left hand. He had a ring

similar to mine. Smart guy had given himself the antidote to my tranquilizer and was

getting ready to jump my ass.

It was time to teach the man-whore a lesson. I casually raised my sword and did

my version of a stun gun. “
Cuidam suis
.” A second later, a blue bolt struck Fabian in the

chest, knocking him flat. “Nice try, Romeo.”

“You didn’t kill him,”
Grams complained.

48
|
GAIL KOGER

“If you want me to start my training tomorrow, not another word.”
I shot a longing look

at Fabian’s now limp penis. I bet he could do all sorts of naughty things with it.

CATCHING DRAGOS | 49

Chapter Eight

I parked my rental in the circus parking lot and took a deep breath. I loved the

smell of popcorn, the sound of the calliope playing and children laughing. The big top

rose over the food booths and rides. I headed for Grams’s spiffy motor home.

“Hank broke his leg. I need you to take over the ticket booth,” Grams said the

instant I walked into her motor home.

“What? I’m not a performer.”

“You are now. I put the costume on my bed.”

I groaned. All the ticket takers dressed as clowns. “But, Grams…”

She gave me the stink eye.

“Yes, ma’am.” I handed her the hex box and headed down the narrow hallway to

the bedroom. This was my punishment for not killing Fabian.

My cell phone chirped. I glanced at the number, and my stomach clenched. Shit! It

was Fabian. How had he gotten the number to my burner phone? I grabbed the

scrambler Uncle Bobby had made for me and attached it. His deep, gravelly voice said,

“Joe’s Bar and Grill.”

Fabian growled, “Surrender by dawn or face the consequences.” The line went

dead.

“Grams, we might have a problem. I just got a call from Fabian on my supposedly

untraceable cell phone!” I shouted down the hallway.

“The phone is untraceable, and he’s only trying to rattle you. You need to be at the

ticket booth in twenty minutes.”

50
|
GAIL KOGER

“Yes, ma’am.” I quickly stripped off my butler uniform and pulled on the clown

jumpsuit. Oh yay, it was a shocking pink with hideous red flowers. Add in a neon-

yellow wig and bright-red nose, and I would resemble something out of a horror movie.

“Don’t forget the shoes,” Grams called.

The long clown shoes were, of course, yellow. Walking in those would be so much

fun. I pulled off my scratchy face mask and sighed in relief.

The front door to the motor home crashed open, and Antonio bellowed, “Where is

she?”

Oh, crap. Should I run or should I hide or should I kick his ass?

Grams snapped at Antonio, “Sit down!”

“I’m the enforcer for this clan. Mariah had no right to interfere,” Antonio snarled.

It suddenly got very quiet.

Uh-oh. Grams was doing her famous mental Vulcan death grip. It hurt like a

mother.

“Go out the trapdoor,”
Grams instructed.

“Yes, ma’am.”
I applied the face paint and fastened the red ball on my nose. Yep,

children would run screaming when they saw me.

* * * *

Four hours later, and I was ready to start screaming obscenities. A lot of them.

Every one of the Vizzini hunters had come up to the ticket booth and spat at me. Ugh.

The glass now resembled a bug-splattered windshield.

My revenge? I gave them all jock itch. Magic did have its uses.

A fist appeared out of nowhere and hit the window.
Crack!
The glass shattered.

I jumped about a foot.

His face twisted with rage, Antonio commanded, “Remove the spells. Now!”

CATCHING DRAGOS | 51

“When the hunters apologize, I will,” I shot back sweetly and conjured up a

balloon dog filled with sleeping gas. The cranky ass was in serious need of a nap.

His hands balled into fists.

I grabbed the balloon.

Grams, in her Madam Zelda gypsy garb, strolled up. “Is there a problem?”

“No, ma’am,” we said in unison.

“Good.” Grams surveyed the damaged glass and the globs of spit. “Tell those

fools it’s never a good idea to disrespect a slayer.”

Antonio gave a stiff bow. “Yes, madam.” He stormed off.

“Jock itch?”

I shrugged and hid the balloon. “Seemed appropriate.”

“Your talent for provoking men is unsurpassed,” Grams said.

“They mess with me. I mess with them.”

Grams sighed. “One day you will meet a man who won’t put up with your

foolishness. He will tame you.”

Tame? Like I was a fractious filly? “It will never happen,” I stated, utterly sure no

man could ever best me.

“The Dragos hunter has the strength.”

“Fabian? You’ve got to be kidding me?”

“But, he is Dragos,” Grams added sadly.

“Next you’ll be trying to fix me up with Antonio.”

Grams shook her head. “No, you’re too strong for him.”

BOOK: Catching Dragos
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