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Authors: Aiden James

Twice Bitten

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Twice Bitten
Dying of the Dark [1]
Aiden James
Aiden James Fiction (2011)

The first two Dying of the Dark novels, together in one convenient omnibus.

The Vampires' Last Lover:

Txema Ybarra is the most unenviable nineteen-year-old girl alive.

Smart, pretty, and athletically gifted, this University of Tennessee freshman should be enjoying college life and her entrance into adulthood. And for a moment she does…until the vampires show up.

Born with an unusual ‘twin teardrop’ birthmark on her neck, Txema (pronounced Chema) is one of only a handful of females in the world who bear this trait. It marks her as a vessel of eternal youth and beauty for an elite vampire society determined to protect her precious blood….But it also is the only thing standing in the way of a rogue ‘undead’ nation determined to destroy mankind and usurp the power their sexier brethren have held uncontested for centuries.

Caught in the middle of this war after all the other bearers of the birthmark are murdered, Txema must flee America and heads to France under the protection of five beautiful vampires who all have a vested interest in her survival. The race is on to save her blood, as well as her very life, to ensure the survival of Les Amants de Vampire. Otherwise, Txema will be the last one…the vampires’ last lover.

The Vampires' Birthright:

A birthright. It should be something no one can ever take away.

But that’s not how it works in the world of vampires. Especially when that birthright involves a unique type of blood necessary for an elitist vampire society to remain young and beautiful.

Welcome to the continued misadventure of nineteen-year-old Txema Ybarra.

The earth’s most privileged undead believe they deserve a stake in Txema’s blood, and there is power and prestige for whoever controls her ancient bloodline. However, the vampire demon, Ralu, and his burgeoning Chupacabra army crave the same lofty status. Unlike his brother Gustav—ruler of the elite European vampires—Ralu desires the death of Txema, and with it the end of Gustav’s two thousand-year reign.

As this teenage mother-to-be fights for survival for her and her unborn daughter, the journey to elude Ralu and traitor vampires among Gustav’s civilized allies takes Txema across the globe. The race is on to save or destroy two human lives…and determine the rightful holder of The Vampires’ Birthright.

 

 

 

Twice Bitten:

 

Dying of the Dark

Vampire Series

*

The Vampires’ Last Lover

*

The Vampires’ Birthright

 

by

 

Aiden James

 

 

 

 

 

 

Acclaim for Aiden James:

 

“Aiden James has written a deeply psychological, gripping tale that keeps the readers hooked from page one.”


Bookfinds review for
The Forgotten Eden

 

“Not only is Aiden James a storyteller par excellence, but his material for his story is riveting.”

—Ruth Wilson, Huntress Reviews for
The Forgotten Eden

 

“The hook to this excellent suspense thriller is the twists that will keep readers wondering what is going on as nothing is quite what it seems. Adding to the excitement is that the audience will wonder whether the terror is an evil supernatural creature or an amoral human…Aiden James provides a dark thriller that grips fans from the opening.”

—Harriet Klausner for
The Forgotten Eden

 

“Aiden James writing style flows very easily and I found that
Cades Cove
snowballed into a very gripping tale. Clearly the strengths in the piece were as the spirit’s interaction became prevalent with the family…. The Indian lore and ceremonies and the flashbacks to Allie Mae’s (earthly) demise were very powerful. I think those aspects separated the work from what we’ve seen before in horror and ghost tales.”

—Evelyn Klebert, author of
A Ghost of a Chance

 

“The intense writing style of Aiden James kept my eyes glued to the story and the pages seemed to fly by at warp speed.…Twists, turns, and surprises pop up at random times to keep the reader off balance. It all blends together to create one of the best stories I have read all year.”

—Detra Fitch,
Huntress Reviews for
The Devil’s Paradise

 

“Aiden James is insanely talented! We are watching a master at work….Ghost stories don’t get any better than this.”

—J.R. Rain, author of
Moon Dance
and
Vampire Moon

 

 

BOOKS BY AIDEN JAMES

 

CADES COVE SERIES

Cades Cove

The Raven Mocker

 

THE TALISMAN CHRONICLES

The Forgotten Eden

The Devil’s Paradise

 

GHOSTHUNTERS 101 SERIES

Deadly Night

The Ungrateful Dead

 

THE DYING OF THE DARK SERIES

The Vampires’ Last Lover

The Vampires’ Birthright

Blood Princesses of the Vampires

Scarlet Legacy of the Vampires

(Coming summer 2013)

 

THE JUDAS CHRONICLES

Plague of Coins

Reign of Coins

Destiny of Coins

The Dragon Coin

(Coming summer 2013)

 

WITH J.R. RAIN

The Nick Caine Adventures

Temple of the Jaguar

Treasure of the Deep

Pyramid of the Gods

(Coming summer 2013)

 

 

COLLECTIONS

Terror at Midnight

Dark Legacy

Twice Bitten

Pray for Daylight

Cursed Immortals

In the Dead of Night

Dying of the Dark Vampires

Vampires, Ghosts, and God

 

 

Twice Bitten

Published by Aiden James

Copyright © 2011 by Aiden James

Cover design by: R.C. Rutter

www.RCRutter.com

 

 

Ebook Edition, License Notes

This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each person you share it with. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then you should return to your favorite ebook store and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

 

 

 

 

The Vampires’ Last Lover

 

 

 

 

Chapter 1

 

 

Consider this a diary of sorts. I’m not an English major, so forgive the occasional grammatical errors. I haven’t got time to take a class to further hone my writing. They’ve told me that it all could end very soon...unless the experiment to save my blood earlier this morning works. If it does, then we can outlast the ‘others’. But, in case it doesn’t, I’m writing as much as I can about what has happened during the past ten days and what it all means to the survival of our world. 

To get it down on paper…this warning for others.

For, in the event this experiment doesn’t work, they’ll soon be coming for everyone else. They’ll feed enough to remain immortal, and many of you will die. Ridiculous, I know. But, what I’m telling you is the truth. You may have already seen the beginnings of what I’ll soon reveal on the latest television news reports.

Throughout my nineteen years on earth—my entire life—they’ve watched me. They’ve studied and hunted me and other females in my family, feeding at will. I found out just this week that it’s been going on for many centuries.

Hidden voyeurs in the shadows. All quiet…all hungry. 

All vampire.

 

My name is Txema, which is pronounced ‘Chema’.  Txema Ybarra. I grew up in Richmond, Virginia. Part of a proud Basque lineage, although my immediate family is like most American families of immigrant descent. My father and brothers cheer for the Redskins, and only my mother still adheres to the tenets of our Roman Catholic heritage. I grew up in an affluent neighborhood, where I enjoyed all the benefits of a privileged education. This later afforded me the opportunity to attend college on a full-ride athletic scholarship. But, I want to be a veterinarian. Or, at least I
wanted
to be a veterinarian.

It’s what brought me to Tennessee, where I enrolled at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. It was to be the start of my medical career, while playing basketball for the legendary Pat Summit. 

But, I will never do either one.

A fall down a stairwell in September that resulted in a partial tear to the ligaments in my right ankle took care of my freshman basketball aspirations. My present circumstances have ensured that a pursuit of a veterinarian career—or any other—won’t happen either. 

Ironically, that accident may have set everything in motion that has happened since. I met my boyfriend, Peter Worley, while lounging in the lobby of Massey Hall. Tall, dark, and great looking, he had caught my eye at orientation, and we shared the same biology lab. But, we never had a chance to talk beyond basic pleasantries until he saw me struggling to balance my laptop while trying to stand up holding my crutches. I’ve seen other girls glare with envy, and he could have his pick, I’m sure. He’s not intimidated by the fact that I’m as tall as he, at six foot-two. He says he likes my smile and the way my hazel eyes shimmer when I’m laughing, and how my dark hair hangs in curled waves upon my shoulders. I think it’s more my other curves and the fact I lack nothing up top…although I’d like to believe what he tells me. At least he would have that in common with the vampire boys that soon came to call on me.

Am I in love? No…not yet, although Peter and I seemed destined for something special between us. On up until my cast was removed from my left foot, a few days before Halloween, we spent almost every waking moment together. They say initial passion can smother you if you’re not careful. At times, it has seemed too much.  But when apart, I’ve often thought of nothing else but being with him. His smile, and the way his deep brown eyes turn brighter when he tells me that he loves me, has made it nearly impossible for me to complete my studies with the steadfast focus I’ve always had for my schoolwork. 

Maybe it’s the fact we’ve only known each other for just a few months. Regardless, I’ve not been able to commit myself to him, fully. Yet, I cherish his touch, and how the Ralph Lauren cologne mingles with his skin when I’ve kissed his chest. He is like a drug I can’t get enough of. But, each time he says he loves me something inside me tightens up. I’ve sensed lately how my hesitation to commit really bothers him. He is patient. But it’s hard for such a catch to remain that way when other girls would give him anything he asked for. My soul is not ready.

This torment upon my heart…this desire to be close to him along with the need for distance was the main conflict in my life, until the night of my nineteenth birthday, just a little over a week ago. Tuesday, November 9
th
. While getting ready for a dinner and movie date with Peter, a sudden chill entered my dorm room. My roommate, Tyreen Davenport, had already left that night to be with her man, Johnny Ayers. Being on the fourth floor gives us both a sense of security. On that night, however, it felt as if a window was open, and the cold Smoky Mountain air had been allowed to rush in. Yet, the window was closed, and when I turned to look at the door to my room, it remained shut.

A young man stood in front of it, staring intently at me.  The man’s paleness and presence immediately announced he wasn’t from around here. As it turned out, he wasn’t even from this world.

 

 

 

 

Chapter 2

 

 

“You are getting ready to go out tonight?” he asked. His husky voice was almost musical in its timbre, and the accent European, the richness genteel. Long golden hair partially covered his eyes, which glowed iridescent around constricted pupils. “Beware, and be forewarned, Txema. Those who want to end your life have come. They are outside…waiting.”

Staring at him, incredulous, my heart raced faster than I ever recalled before that moment. Not even while driving for a game-winning layup.

“Who are you?” I demanded. “And,
how
in the hell did you get in here??”

“I am Garvan de sang,” he replied while stepping casually toward me. Dressed in dark jeans and a burgundy sweater, his riding boots were muted by the plush carpet. His ashen skin looked garishly death-like beneath my room’s fluorescent light. It was as if every inch of his skin was covered in pancake makeup. 

I instinctively retreated to my dresser. I kept a Tazer gun there that was given to me for protection by my older brother, the day I moved into my dorm room this past August. But before I touched the drawer’s handle, my visitor appeared next to me, somehow traveling silently across the room in the blink of an eye. I gasped in surprise while chills traveled up and down my spine. I considered the absurdity of what I had just witnessed, and for a moment wondered if this was some kind of waking dream that I’d fallen into. But, my breaths rising into the air provided a frigid dose of reality. I could feel Garvan’s iciness siphon the heat from my very essence as his penetrating gaze studied me.

“Don’t be afraid,” he said, gently pushing my fingers away from the dresser. The coolness in his touch deepened, embracing my entire being. I couldn’t move. “We won’t hurt you, Txema.”

“Who’s
we?”
I demanded, surprised by the anger easily coming through despite my unease. I thought of every clothes accessory I had available to me that could be turned into a weapon. Perhaps my shoes, or the file in my makeup purse? “And, how do you know my name?”  

He started to answer me, but suddenly jerked his head toward my door, as if he heard someone lurking outside my room in the hallway. It could’ve been anyone. After all, when does a dorm floor ‘rest’, anyway? The look on his face reflected intense concentration. I also strained to listen, unable to hear much beyond my own nervous breaths.

Now, I can certainly understand if everyone out there is wondering why I didn’t simply scream for help. Really, in retrospect, I should have. It wasn’t like this man named Garvan didn’t frighten me. But something else…. Something in my heart told me, absurdly, to trust this stranger. At least for the moment. So insane, and yet I felt so compelled to trust this pasty man whose frozen touch both repulsed and exhilarated me.

BOOK: Twice Bitten
10.63Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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