blood debt chapter 1
Hello! Today I'm sharing with you an early look at Blood Debt Chapter 1. Blood Debt is Book 2 in the Sanguis Syndicate - my M/M Vampire Mafia Romance series. I like to have my main characters meet as soon as possible, and here you get to see them meet for the first time in chapter one. Enjoy!
Raul relaxed back in his chair, watching a group of talented actors sing and dance their way through a darkly humorous murder mystery. It was a good show and he was enjoying it. But for some reason, an unusual sense of awareness hummed in his blood, keeping him from giving a hundred percent of his attention to the stage. He used his enhanced vampire senses to search for any hint of danger. But there was nothing.
What had him so... unsettled? He attempted to shake off the feeling and concentrate on the performance just at the lead actress delivered a cheeky line and sauntered from the stage. A moment later, the MC stepped out from behind the curtain.
"It's time for our intermission. We'll be back shortly with a decadent dessert that might be deadly."
Raul applauded along with the rest of the audience. The lights went up and Raul rose to stretch his legs. The two dates who'd attended the theater with him rose as well.
"This performance is great," Alan said.
Linda, his other date, laced her fingers through Alan's. "I see a friend of mine over there. We're going to go and say hello."
Raul nodded and the two humans went off to speak to their friends. As more of the crowd began to move around during the intermission, Raul recognized a few of his acquaintances. Upon noticing him, they came over to pay their respects.
A burly vampire, with muscles straining the fabric of his suit and his bald head sweating, greeted Raul first.
"Nice to see you, Mr. Raul. What do you think of the show?"
The vampire accompanying him smiled. She was dressed entirely in green - her gown, shoes, jewelry. Even her hair and lipstick were in the same emerald shade.
"Is it worth leaving that beautiful ranch of yours for a few hours?" she asked.
Raul laughed. He was a known homebody. He socialized as needed for work, but he was most comfortable at home, riding over his property or in the house watching movies.
"It's worth it. The actors are doing a fantastic job."
Another acquaintance, a human in a vintage beaded evening gown with long strawberry blonde hair offered their opinion. "I love the singing voice of the president character, but I think she's the killer."
Their small group began debating who they thought was the culprit behind the show's murder mystery. As they talked, the live musicians finished their song, a haunting rendition of Jewel's Foolish Games. After the audience's quiet applause, they set their instruments aside and rose to take their break. As they filed out of the theater, a DJ came out and started to play a set of old R&B hits from the nineties over the theater's sound system.
In the quiet lull before the first recorded song began to play, Raul heard a soft laugh. Happy, bright, and delicate. He turned, searching for the source of that delightful sound. He didn't see who it came from at first. Then, a woman in a black silk dress moved to the side, revealing the person standing behind her.
A petite, East Asian human, with short, stylishly cut flaxen blonde hair, and golden skin. The young man was dressed in a caramel brown suit with fuzzy white trim on the lapels and a cream button up shirt beneath the jacket. Looking at him smiling, his skin glowing under the theater lights, made Raul's heart pound.
"Excuse me," Raul said in the general direction of the person who'd been speaking to him.
Without another word, he left the group and moved across the room, headed directly for the lovely human who'd caught his attention.
"Hello," he said once he'd reached him.
After saying goodbye to the person he'd been speaking with, the young man turned and looked up at Raul.
His voice was as soft as an angel's kiss. Up close, Raul could see that pale brown freckles dotted the bridge of his nose and the tops of his cheeks. His lips were pink and lush and his dark eyes were still sparkling from his earlier laughter. The human was so gorgeous that it took Raul a moment to realize he was staring and mentally shake himself from his trance. "I'm Raul." He held a hand out.
Ji-Su accepted his handshake, his warm, fine boned hand all but disappearing inside Raul's large grasp.
"It's nice to meet you." A quick glance at his neck showed recently healed marks from a vampire's fangs. This lovely human already belonged to someone. Disappointment burned in Raul's chest - startling in its intensity. He asked just to be sure that Ji-Su wasn't available. "Are you here alone?"
"No. I'm with my patron and his friends. They stepped outside to smoke."
His blood patron. Ji-Su was a blood pet. "Tell me, Ji-Su. What do you do when you're not looking so enchanting that you bewitch strangers at parties?" That precious laugh came again. Hearing it up close sent a tingle of pleasure down Raul's spine.
"I'm a gamer."
"Ah, forgive me if I'm not quite sure what you mean by that."
A deep dimple appeared in Ji-Su's cheek when he smiled.
"I play video games and stream myself them playing online."
"Interesting. I'm into a different type of gaming. I run a casino." He ran several actually but there was no need to bring that up in casual conversation.
"I've only been to a casino once. I got scared when I lost fifty dollars at the craps table, left, and never went back."
"That's too bad. If you come to my casino, I'll show you a much better time than that."
"Is this a sales pitch? Will part of the night be spent with you trying to sell me a time share?"
Raul grinned. "Not a sales pitch. Just an attempt to get you to spend time with me so I can hear your lovely laugh again. In fact, I might nudge the table a bit to make sure you win just to hear you celebrate."
Ji-Su bit his lip, clearly holding back the laugh Raul wanted to hear.
"Are you saying your casino is corrupt?"
"Not at all. But I'm willing to make an exception for a human as pretty as you."
Now Ji-Su laughed. Raul listened and watched, completely captivated. Far too soon, Ji-Su's laugh quieted, although the humor lingered in his expression. Raul was about to ask him about his blood patron and how long he had left on his contract - when Ji-Su looked off to the side.
"There's my patron."
Raul turned to look in the direction of Ji-Su's nod. An African American vampire with medium-brown skin, dressed in a black tux approached. His jacket hung open and the bowtie was undone. His dark hair was separated into twists that were dyed blond on the tips. Three similarly attired humans and one vampire walked behind him. Raul recognized Ji-Su's patron but didn't recall his name. He only knew he was a LaMonte, one of the aristocratic vampire families that resided in Dear Lake.
"Cedric, you're back," Ji-Su said.
"Obviously," the other vampire drawled as he stepped partially in between Raul and Ji-Su. His eyes moved to take in Raul. "Who is this you're talking to?"
"This is Raul. Raul, this is Cedric."
Raul nodded his head at the introduction. The other vampire didn't extend his hand for a greeting, so Raul didn't bother to either. Only two seconds in Cedric's presence and he already didn't like him. After a moment of cold silence between them, Cedric's eyes left his and slid back to Ji-Su.
"I left you at our table. Next time, stay where I put you."
A blush tinged Ji-Su's cheeks, no doubt from embarrassment at the rude way Cedric had spoken to him in front of everyone.
"I apologize for wandering off. I hope you weren't worried."
"I wasn't." Cedric clamped a hand around Ji-Su's upper arm. "Let's go."
Ji-Su gave Raul a polite smile. "It was nice to meet you."
"You as well."
Cedric practically dragged Ji-Su back to their table. Thanks to his heightened vampire senses, Raul heard their conversation over the music as they walked away.
"I don't want you talking to any vampires unless I introduce you to them first and give you permission."
Raul didn't like Cedric's demeanor or the way he treated Ji-Su. But there wasn't cause for him to do anything about it. Cedric hadn't been abusive, merely rude and abrasive. And Ji-Su looked healthy and well cared for as was expected for a blood pet. Still, he had the urge to go over and steal Ji-Su away from Cedric and take him back to his ranch to keep for himself. Odd, since he'd never been one to covet what belonged to someone else. But something about Ji-Su brought out instincts he'd never felt before. Take. Keep. Make him mine.
At the sound of footsteps behind him, Raul closed his mind to those thoughts and turned away from watching the group retake their seats. His own blood pets approached. Linda, a tall, willowy, raven-haired Latina and Alan a handsome, curly-haired Caucasian with a solid, stocky build. The two came to stand on either side of him and linked their arms through his.
"Who was that darling young man?" Linda asked.
"Ji-Su, a blood pet of Cedric's."
"Is he a friend of yours?"
"No, neither of them are."
A bell chimed, signaling that intermission was drawing to a close. "Come on. Let's return to our table." They went back to their seats, chatting quietly as the wait staff began circulating with trays of dessert and wine. A server arrived at their table, serving each of them a peach pastry drenched in a whiskey sauce and topped with whipped cream, along with glasses of a crisp Riesling wine.
Just before the lights went down, Raul caught a glimpse of Ji-Su a few tables over. He was smiling his thanks at the server who'd set a dessert plate in front of him. Once the actors retook the stage, Raul made an attempt to put Ji-Su from his mind and focus on the show. But he couldn't stop thinking about that soft, happy laugh and those sparkling dark eyes for the rest of the night.
* * *
A few hours later, their trio returned to the ranch. The tall black entrance gates smoothly slid open to allow the limo to enter the property. After the driver let them out, Raul thanked him and said goodnight.
"Goodnight, Mr. Raul."
The limo pulled away, and Raul went up the wide front steps accompanied by Linda and Alan. The three of them walked into the house and were greeted by the doorman in the softly lit foyer. Linda handed the servant the white swing coat she'd worn over her pink dress.
"Raul, my love. I think our time here is over," she said as she slipped out of her heels.
That statement had Raul raising his eyebrows in surprise. "What?"
Linda and Alana weren't on an official blood pet contract with him. They were there because the three of them were in a casual relationship. He drank their blood and in exchange he showered them with money and gifts. It was a mutually beneficial relationship, but it wasn't facilitated by one of the agencies that set up humans and vampires. This was actually their third time staying with him over the past few years. He'd met them long ago at one of Everett's costume balls. They came at his invitation and left when they chose. But they hadn't mentioned anything about wanting to leave before now.
"That's news to me. Is something wrong?"
"Of course not, sweetie. We always have the best time when we're here. But..."
"But?" He prompted her when she didn't finish.
Linda folded her hands together in front of her, an almost mischievous smile on her fuchsia-tinted lips. "Your mind is about to be preoccupied with someone else."
"He is really cute," Alan added. "I don't mind leaving so you can focus on him."
Raul shook his head when he realized who they were referring to. "You're both being silly. I talked to Ji-Su for less than five minutes. And he already belongs to someone else. Our paths probably won't cross again anytime soon if ever."
Linda walked up to him. She put a hand on his cheek and looked into his eyes. Raul met her gaze without flinching, letting her find whatever she was looking for. After several moments she patted him lightly on the cheek before she dropped her hand.
"I know what I saw. And I never doubt what I see is coming."
"I won't deny my attraction to him. But that is no reason for either of you to leave. I listen to you two rave over the vampires you're attracted to all the time and it's never been a problem."
Linda pursed her lips, thinking. Finally, she nodded and stepped back.
"All right. We'll stay. For now."
"Would you like to feed tonight?" she asked in an abrupt change of subject.
Raul dropped his gaze to her throat. She'd worn her hair up, exposing smooth, pale skin. Normally he'd be tempted by the sight. Tonight, his fangs didn't so much as tingle. He shook his head. "No, I don't need to."
Alan stepped behind Linda and slid his arms around her waist in a tight hug.
"How about sex with one or both of us?" he asked with a grin.
"No appetite for that either?" Linda asked with a dark brow raised. She looked over her shoulder at Alan. "What a surprise," she said in an exaggerated tone.
"A truly shocking surprise," Alan teased back.
Raul barked a laugh. "You two are ridiculous. It has nothing to do with that little human. I'm simply not hungry and not in the mood for sex."
"If you say so. Come on, Alan. Those heels made my feet ache and I could use a foot rub."
The two said goodnight, and hand in hand, they climbed the stairs, going up to the room they shared.
After checking in with the ranch's mayordoma to make sure nothing needed his attention, Raul went up to his room as well. He undressed and stretched out naked in bed. As he lay there, waiting for sleep to come, his mind wasn't on the two beautiful humans who were down the hall for his pleasure. Instead, he thought of Ji-Su. A soft, pretty name for a soft, pretty human.
If he'd come across him socially before he'd been contracted to Cedric or seen him on stage at one of his organization's blood pet auctions, he most certainly would have made a play for him. But he didn't poach from other vampires. He had a moment's regret that he hadn't had a chance to ask Ji-Su when his contract with Cedric was up. If he had, he might have been able to make arrangements to be Ji-Su's next blood patron. A missed opportunity.
With another sigh of regret, he turned over to go to sleep. As he closed his eyes, he accepted that Ji-Su was simply someone he'd felt an overwhelmingly strong attraction to but probably would never see again.
* * *
"That was a fun show." Ji-Su chatted with Cedric as they walked into the vampire's luxury town house. The butler, dressed entirely in white, waited to greet them and take their coats. The lights from the heavy crystal chandelier hanging above reflected on the white marble floor of the foyer near his feet. "It's good to get away from my screens and meet new people every once in a while."
"Like Raul," Cedric replied with a barely hidden sneer to his tone.
"I didn't mean him in particular but yes he seemed like a nice guy."
"Just remember what I said." Cedric tossed his coat at the butler. "Stay away from vampires that I haven't introduced you to."
Ji-Su managed to keep the annoyance out of his expression when he agreed. "I will remember."
They both went upstairs then separated on the second-floor landing to go to their individual bedrooms.
As Ji-Su undressed and prepared for bed, he couldn't help but think that Cedric's insistence he didn't speak to anyone without his prior introduction and permission was insecure at best and controlling at worst. But whatever. Cedric wasn't his lover. The vampire was simply his blood patron. He supplied Cedric with his blood a few times a month in exchange for room, board, and a hefty monthly cash deposit.
He'd already completed the first three months of his contract. There were nine months remaining and then he'd be free to talk to whoever he wanted, Raul included. Hopefully, by the time his contract with Cedric was over he would no longer need a blood patron. But he wouldn't mind getting to know Raul outside of an official human-vampire agreement.
The Hispanic vampire was ruggedly handsome. He had warm brown skin, black brows that arched over eyes the color of melted chocolate, and dark, neatly styled hair that curled just below his ears. The rough scruff of a well-groomed shadow beard enhanced a strong jaw and full lips. And he wore onyx stud earrings in each pierced ear.
Raul was a big man. Tall, with wide shoulders, and a broad chest. He'd been dressed in a tux, the burgundy color so deep, it was almost black. The jacket and pants were cut to perfectly fit his frame, giving him a smooth, elegant air. But the accents he'd chosen - an understated Western copper belt buckle and black leather cowboy boots with copper tips - set him apart from everyone else in the room.
Raul's style reminded Ji-Su of a wealthy rancher from old Western movies. That was probably a fitting description, since as a vampire, there was no telling how old Raul actually was. He appeared to be in his early thirties, but he'd probably looked that way for a very long time.
His favorite thing about the handsome vampire had been the way Raul smiled. Raul smiled with a slow, lazy curl to his lips and a hint of that vampire's glow lighting his dark eyes to an amber brown. His entire vibe was relaxed and friendly, which made his easy flirting charming and welcome. He'd been attracted to the vampire from the moment he'd seen him.
Ji-Su sighed and turned over. Of course a gorgeous vampire like Raul wasn't single. He'd snuck a few glances at him throughout the night and noticed there were two dates accompanying him. A man and a woman - both beautiful. Maybe one day he'd see Raul again when they were each in a position to take their interaction beyond a five-minute conversation. That would be nice. With a smile on his lips, Ji-Su fell asleep imagining it.
What do you think of the preview? I hope you liked it. I'll be sharing Chapter 2 with you next Friday so please look forward to it! To add Blood Debt to your Goodreads TBR and sign up to be notified when it's available, click the button below.
Thanks for reading!
An excerpt from blood debt
Hello and Happy Thursday! Today I have an excerpt from Blood Debt, my upcoming M/M vampire mafia romance. Blood Debt is book 2 in the Sanguis Syndicate series and will be available April 13th!
"Mr. Raul, it's Ji-Su."
"Come in," came from the other side of the door.
He opened the door just enough to slip inside and shut it behind him. Raul was sitting up in the middle of a big bed. His dark hair was rumpled, and his chest was bare.
"I’m sorry to wake you but it’s the storm. I umm... I get nervous during big storms like this. Can I sleep in here with you? In that chair over there is fine." He pointed at a big leather wingback chair in the corner of the massive bedroom.
Raul shook his head.
Ji-Su was immediately disappointed and embarrassed for asking. Of course, Raul said no. He probably thought Ji-Su was too old to get freaked out by storms. "I understand," he said as he turned to go.
"No. Not the chair," Raul said in a voice husky from sleep.
Ji-Su stopped and turned back around. Raul was holding the corner of the covers up for him.
"Get in here."
Relieved, Ji-Su hurried across the room and climbed into bed with Raul. "I’m sorry," he apologized as he slid beneath the covers. "I know it’s silly to be afraid of storms."
"It’s not. We all have something we fear."
"What do you fear?"
A small smile curled one side of Raul's lips. "Maybe."
Ji-Su didn't believe for one second that Raul was afraid of Big Foot. But he appreciated the gentle humor to help put him at ease. Trying not to be obvious, he scooted over the mattress to get a little closer to Raul. He'd just stealthily moved another inch when a heavy arm draped across his waist, pulling him up against the heated, solid wall of Raul's chest.
"Is that better?"
Apparently, he hadn't been sneaky enough. He was too happy he was being comforted to be embarrassed at being caught. Ji-Su nodded. "Yes. Thank you.
“Do you think you can sleep now?"
"I should be able-." He started to answer but lightning cracked and thunder boomed so close together it was one big snarl of terrifying noise. Ji-Su jumped, hitting the top of his head against Raul's chin as he dove forward to bury his face against his chest. He stayed there, shaking, until the angry sounds outside the windows eased up. Once it was quiet except for the sound of the pounding rain, he pulled back and looked up at Raul.
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to hurt you."
"Barely felt it."
"Are you sure?" He tried to joke as his racing heart slowly returned to normal speed. "I've been told I have a hard head."
"You can always kiss it better." Raul went quiet and pressed his lips together for a moment. "Sorry, that was bad joke."
"I don't mind." He leaned up and pressed a quick but soft kiss to the spot where his skull had collided with Raul's chin. "Did that help?"
"Yep, the pain is all gone now."
Ji-Su smiled. He appreciated that Raul was teasing him to take his mind off the storm that raged outside. When another crack of lightning came, he squeezed his eyes shut. He didn't jump, but he couldn't help the shivers of fear that ran through him. Raul rubbed his back, his big hand sliding up and down in a soothing caress.
"Sssh. You're okay."
His eyes still closed, Ji-Su nodded. The warm hand on his back was just what he needed to stay calm. The thunder gradually rolled into silence and Ji-Su opened his eyes. Raul was watching him. His face was mostly in shadow, but Ji-Su could still make out how handsome he was. Ji-Su shivered again, but this time it wasn't from fear. Raul was so big and he made him feel safe. But he also made him feel something else. A familiar feeling, one he hadn't experienced in a while, tugged behind his navel. The feeling grew when the hand stroking his back changed course and moved to cup his jaw, a broad thumb caressing his cheek.
Raul stopped, the unfinished sentence hanging in the small space between them.
"I'm what?" he asked when Raul didn't continue.
"Is that a good thing?"
"Mmm-hmm. I like sweet."
Ji-Su's heart started racing again. He knew Raul could hear it. And sure enough, his thumb moved down to lightly press over his pulse.
"Is this fear?" Raul asked quietly.
Ji-Su shook his head. "No," he whispered back.
At his answer, Raul slowly leaned down. Closer and closer until their lips were almost touching. Ji-Su let his eyes drift closed and waited.
I'm so excited to share Raul and Ji-Su's story with you! Blood Debt will be available April 13th on Amazon in Kindle Unlimited and on Barnes and Noble .com for paperback and hard cover. Visit the Blood Debt info page to add Blood Debt to your Goodreads TBR and sign up to be notified when it's available!
And if you haven't read Sanguis Syndicate Book 1 - Blood Kiss - be sure to check it out!
Everett – powerful vampire and ruthless crime lord. He doesn’t have time for relationships and has zero interest in taking care of a human in exchange for their blood. Then, one night, he attends an auction where humans are sold as blood pets to wealthy vampires. The moment a young redhead steps on to the stage, Everett is instantly attracted to his beauty. Money is no object and he’ll pay any amount to possess the gorgeous human. And once Everett has Solan alone in his mansion, he plans to woo him, charm him, and finally, seduce him into his bed.
Solan – spoiled and playful prince of the Kane mob family. He entered the blood pet auction as a lark. But things quickly turn serious when he meets the glowing blue gaze of the tall, stern vampire who purchased him. Solan fights his attraction to Everett, determined to complete his contract without any physical or emotional entanglements to his new patron. However, the sensual intimacy of sharing his blood with Everett, of feeling his fangs pierce his neck, makes it near impossible to resist the devastatingly handsome and seductive vampire.
Bound together by a contract, passion slowly begins to burn between the vampire and his pet. But with each sweet caress and every heated kiss, Everett realizes that he feels much more for his pretty human than simple desire. His heart enthralled, he becomes determined to do whatever it takes to make Solan his mate. Will Solan return Everett’s love or will he leave the vampire behind forever once their contract comes to an end?
Sanguis Syndicate 2 is coming!
It's almost time! The next vampire crime lord in the Sanguis Syndicate is about to meet his match. Today, I'm revealing the two lovers who are sharing their story with you, the title, blurb, and cover.
Raul – vampire crime lord respected for his strength and feared for his swift vengeance when crossed. When he hears a delicate laugh across the room, he searches through the crowd until he finds Ji-Su – a gorgeous human with a soft smile. After learning that Ji-Su belongs to someone else, Raul reluctantly lets him go. However, fate intervenes, bringing them together once more. Raul rescues Ji-Su from a dangerous situation and takes him to his secluded ranch to keep him safe. Determined to let Ji-Su heal, Raul resists his craving for the beautiful human’s blood and his perfect body. But he can only hold back his desire for so long. Raul finally gives in, taking everything Ji-Su has to give in a storm of passion.
Ji-Su – sweet, charming, up-and-coming gamer. When things go terribly wrong with his first blood patron, Ji-Su turns to Raul for help. The big, gentle vampire takes care of all his needs and makes him feel safe. He also makes Ji-Su feel something else – pure, deep desire. Ji-Su wants Raul to bite him, drink his blood, and take control of his body. However, when Ji-Su unexpectedly sees a darker side of Raul, he fears that he might once again be in mortal danger.
Raul only wants to protect Ji-Su. Even if that means he must protect the human from his own rough desires and violent life. Although his heart demands he claim Ji-Su as his blood-bonded mate, Raul vows to set him free for his own good. Can Ji-Su move past his fears of the violence of Raul’s mafia world to convince his vampire lover that they belong together forever?
Blood Debt is an M/M vampire romance. It has a big, rough, and gentle vampire, the sweet human male he wants to protect, steamy yet loving blood lust, and a guaranteed Happily Ever After.
Tags: Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Organized Crime, Slow Burn
Heat Level: High/Explicit
Content: Violence, Blood Drinking
Blood Debt will be available on Thursday, April 13th 2023. The ebook will be on Amazon and in Kindle Unlimited. Amazon will also have paperback and discreet/SFW editions. Barnes & Noble.com will have the discreet/SFW paperback and hardcover editions. There will not be a pre-order. However, you can add Blood Debt to your Goodreads To Be Read list and sign up for my newsletter to be notified when it's available by clicking the buttons below.
So, what do you all think? Raul is looking hot on the cover, yeah? Are you looking forward to meeting Ji-Su? Let me know what you think of this gentle giant and cutie pie gamer boy! And make sure you check my blog or social media for more reveals over the next few weeks. Details listed below.
And if you haven't read Sanguis Syndicate 1 - Blood Kiss, you can check it out here:
Although I wish every thing I write would be great, sometimes you write a book that isn't good and isn't fit for release. But what do you do in that situation when you've already got a pre-order for it up? I found out with my recent struggles with Blood Rivals. Watch to see what I decided to do and the other lessons I learned.
Trying to go cheap w/ my camera set up wasn't working. So I ordered a new one. Watch me unbox it!
Blood Kiss Chapter 3
Hello again Vampy Readers! This week I have Chapter 3 of Blood Kiss for you. Enjoy!
Copyright Christa Tomlinson July 2022
Everett ate breakfast alone as he always did. When he finished, he went into his home office to work. Normally he would be on his way to Sanguis Tower. However, since he wanted to be here for Solan's arrival, he'd decided to work from home for a few hours. Opening his laptop, he began reviewing reports from the auction. They'd made an outstanding profit. And with the exception of Solan, all of the blood pets had already been successfully set up with their new patrons.
He looked up from his computer at a knock on his open office door. It was Hubert, the butler.
"A car and an extra van will be going to pick up Mr. Solan at seven. Would you like me to cancel your blood service appointments?"
Everett thought about it for a moment before answering. "No. I expect to need time to ease Solan into fulfilling his duty to me. In the meantime, I'll continue to feed from Eric."
Hubert responded with the cheek that came from the comfort of a long relationship.
"It's a good thing you're known for your patience."
"I suppose." He was normally patient. But he suspected he might have trouble with that where Solan was concerned.
"And what room do you want him in so I can inform the staff?"
"Put him in the second primary suite."
"I'll have them freshen it up before his arrival. Anything else?"
"No, that's it for now."
Hubert nodded and left.
Everett looked at the clock. The driver would be leaving to retrieve Solan in about thirty minutes. Since the auction catalogue was already on his desk, he flipped it open to entrant number nine's page. Solan Kane. Everett looked at his picture. The headshot was a good one. Solan had the hint of a smile on his plush pink lips, while his indigo eyes sparkled. That gorgeous head of hair was bright against the black backdrop. And his neck. Smooth skin dusted with freckles drew his eye and made him think of sinking his fangs into the spot just above his shoulder.
Blood Kiss Chapter 2
Hello, Gentle Readers! This week I'm back with Chapter 2 of Blood Kiss - my upcoming M/M Vampire Mafia Romance. If you missed Chapter 1, scroll down to the post below this one. This is an advanced look and not the final edited and proofed copy so there may be a few mistakes. Okay, please enjoy Everett and Solan's next meeting!
Copyright Christa Tomlinson July 2022
The next evening, Everett set the wheels in motion to collect his runaway blood pet. He called Harumi, his second in command, into his office.
She came in, tablet in hand and heels rhythmically tapping on the glossy black marble floor.
"Harumi, get me Nora Kane's personal number. And what's the best time in my schedule tonight for a meeting?"
"I can reschedule the quarterly drinks and payoff meeting with the captain of the vice squad. That frees up the nine o'clock hour."
"Do it." He hated those anyway. The vice-captain only wanted to meet in person so he could brag to his fellow crooked cop cronies that he regularly met with a mob boss vampire. But keeping him happy was essential. Because although the blood pet auctions were legal, there were many other Sanguis Syndicate enterprises that were not. A happy vice-captain kept the vice squad off his back.
Harumi nodded. "Give me a minute and I'll have Ms. Kane on the line. I'll speak with the captain myself."
Barely a minute after Harumi left the room, his desktop phone beeped and his receptionist's pleasant voice came through the speaker.
"Mr. Everett, Ms. Kane is holding for you."
"Thank you, Nancy." He pushed the button to accept the call. "Hello, Ms. Kane."
"Mr. Everett. To what do I owe the pleasure of your call?"
"I believe I met your brother last night. A redhead named Solan?"
"Yes, that is my little brother. What is he up to now?"
"That's what I'd like to come by tonight and discuss."
There was a brief pause before she answered.
"Of course. What time is good for you?"
"I have an opening at nine o'clock."
"Then I'll see you at nine."
They said their goodbyes. Everett set the phone back in its cradle and leaned back in his chair. He was one step closer to claiming his pet.
Blood Kiss Chapter 1
Hello and Happy Friday! Today I bring you the first chapter of Blood Kiss, my upcoming M/M Vampire Mafia Romance. This is an advanced peek - which means it's not the final edited and proofed version. So if you come across a mistake or two just pretend like you didn't see it. ;-) Happy Reading!
Copyright Christa Tomlinson July 2022
"I can't believe you're doing this."
Solan grinned at his best friend. "I've always wanted to see what these auctions are like. What better way to find out than to enter one myself?"
Always the practical one, Todd shook his head. "I'm sure there were at least five different ways you could have found out the answer to that question that didn't involve putting yourself up for sale to be a vampire's blood pet."
"True. But those ways wouldn't have been as fun."
He'd been curious about the blood pet auctions for some time. When he'd heard that Club Scarlet was hosting one, he'd decided to sign up. It was an exciting idea. Something to break up the everyday boredom of his life. He'd been thrilled when he'd received his acceptance package, welcoming him into the Club Scarlet auction program. Now, he was backstage waiting for the final approval before the auction began.
"Okay, Mr. Kane. Your second round of tests all came back clear," one of the assistants said. "You are good to go."
Solan nodded. "Thank you."
He and Todd headed off to the hair and makeup area. A stylist waved at him so he went to her chair.
"I haven't worked on someone with your coloring in a while. Had to snag you before anyone else did." The stylist tied a small white bib around his neck to catch makeup spills. "Do you normally wear makeup?"
Solan shook his head. "Only the occasional lip gloss."
"Okay, then. You'll need something to define your features under the bright stage lights but I'll keep it simple so you feel like yourself."
"Sounds good," Solan said. He sat still as she brushed powder over his face and dusted a peach blush over his cheekbones. She applied a soft bronze eyeshadow, brown eye liner, and dark mascara that made the indigo blue of his eyes pop. The makeup artist finished with a sheer rosy lipstick.
"Perfect," she said. "Now for your hair."
"I want it up when I first go out but I want to be able to take it down while I'm on stage."
"Oooh, you're dramatic. I like that."
The stylist ran a brush through his long red hair that hung past his shoulders until the waves were soft and full. Then she gathered up the entire mass, twisting it into one long coil. She wrapped the coil around itself, forming a bun at the back of his head that she secured with a long silver hair pin.
Solan looked at himself in the mirror when she was done. "I love it! Thank you."
"You're welcome. Good luck out there."
Coming Soon... Blood Kiss!
Hello everyone! I'm excited to announce that I have a new M/M paranormal romance coming soon. Blood Kiss is a vampire mafia romance and today I'm showing you the cover! Want to know more about this steamy vampire romance? Keep reading for the summary and an excerpt.
No Price Is Too High To Pay When A Vampire Is Determined To Claim His Mate
Vampire Everett has zero interest in purchasing a human to meet his blood needs. As a crime lord in the Sanguis Syndicate, his nights are too busy to have time to care for a human in exchange for their blood. Until a gorgeous redhead steps onto the auction stage. Suddenly, Everett is willing to bid any amount to win the charming young man for himself.
Solan entered the blood donor auctions as a lark. But things quickly turn serious when he meets the glowing blue gaze of his tall, stern vampire patron. Solan fights his attraction to Everett, determined to complete his contract without any physical or emotional entanglements. However, the sensual intimacy of sharing his blood with Everett, of feeling his fangs pierce his neck, might derail all of Solan’s plans to resist him.
Bound together by a contract, passion slowly begins to burn between the vampire and his pet. But will that passion be enough to keep them together once their contract comes to an end?
Blood Kiss is an M/M vampire romance. It has a spoiled but loving mob prince, the stern vampire who adores him, blood drinking hot enough to melt your e-readers, and a guaranteed Happily Ever After.
Tags: Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Organized Crime, Slow Burn
Heat Level: High/Explicit
Content: Violence, Blood Drinking
"Are you saying that I can feed from you?"
After his answer, Solan's heart thundered as if he had a galloping race horse in his chest. He'd just agreed to let Everett drink his blood. That wasn't what he'd expected to happen when he'd charged down the stairs half-cocked but he didn't backtrack. Not even when Everett stared at him for a long moment, as if he was waiting for him to change his mind. When Solan didn't say anything, Everett nodded, accepting his answer.
"Are you scared?" Everett asked.
"No," he lied.
"Good. Because there's nothing to be afraid of."
Everett went over and sat on the couch. Solan's eyes skittered away from the way his dress pants hugged his muscular thighs.
"Come and sit down," he said patting the spot next to him.
Solan joined him, sitting stiffly with his back straight and hands tightly gripping his knees.
"Relax," Everett said softly.
Solan tried to do so, but he didn't manage to do more than slightly loosen the death grip he had on his kneecaps. He looked at Everett, allowing a little of his nervousness to show. "Will it hurt?"
"Yes. But only for a moment. After that, a relaxing feeling will take over."
"I won't enjoy it."
"Hmmm." Everett made the noncommittal noise as he reached for the buttons on Solan's night shirt.
Solan flinched back. "What are you doing?"
"I need to take your shirt off."
"I prefer not to have your collar jabbing me in the nose while I feed. Is that all right?"
Solan thought about it for a moment. What Everett said made sense. And he didn't know how messy the feeding would be. Taking his night shirt off would keep any of his blood from dripping on it. He nodded. "That's fine."
Everett slowly slipped each button from its hole. He pushed the pajama top off Solan's shoulder first before removing it completely. He didn't pay much attention to Solan's bared chest. All of his attention was on his neck.
"I need to remove this as well," he said in a voice gone low and husky.
He pressed a thumb to the back of the tracking collar and it popped open with a quiet click. The collar fell from Solan's neck. Everett caught it and set it aside. When he looked back at Solan, his eyes were glowing nearly as bright as they had when he'd carried Solan from Warren's club. He brought a hand up, gently cupping the back of Solan's head and tilting it to the side. Their thighs pressed together when he moved over and leaned in. Solan tried to stay calm but his heart was pounding. This was really happening.
Soft breath brushed over his skin first. Then came twin pinpricks of pain. They were quickly replaced by a warm, shivery sensation that started at the site of the bite and flowed throughout his entire body. Everett's lips formed a tight seal on Solan's neck. When he took the first pull on his vein, Solan was hit with an unexpected wave of deep pleasure.
"Ah!" He gasped aloud at the shock of it and his head fell back, baring all of his throat. Everett growled, the sound vibrating against his skin. He moved closer, held Solan tighter. Every time Everett sucked, a ripple of exquisite tingling sensation went through Solan. His nipples tightened, his stomach lifting behind his navel. And fuck. He was hard, his cock straining against the front of his pajama pants. He clenched his fists, jamming them against his thighs in an effort to resist the instinct that urged him to reach up and hold on to Everett.
And then, the sucking stopped. Everett stayed there for a moment after he withdrew his fangs, breath hot against Solan's neck. He licked over the spots where he'd bitten, sealing the wounds. Solan bit his lip, holding back the moan that wanted to slip free at the feel of Everett's warm, wet tongue lazily sliding over the sensitive spot on his neck. He remained quiet and still, trying not to call attention to his body's responses to Everett drinking his blood. He would die if Everett saw his erection.
After what felt like an endless amount of time, Everett finally raised his head. His eyes were still glowing and there was a single smear of blood at the corner of his mouth. As Solan watched, Everett swiped his thumb over the spot, then sucked the digit into his mouth. To his surprise, his cock throbbed at the sight of Everett savoring that final drop of his blood.
Solan hid his arousal behind the shield of a smugly voiced question. "How do I taste?"
"You taste hot."
Unimpressed, Solan rolled his eyes. "All blood is hot."
"I don't mean the temperature. You taste like fire." Everett's glowing eyes dropped to his mouth. "Wild and hot. But also sweet."
Solan's skin was suddenly too tight. And they were sitting too close to one another, their thighs still warmly pressed together. His heart rate sped up. Belatedly remembering that Everett could hear it, Solan again tried to calm his body down. He leaned back, out of their shared space.
"I'm not kissing you," he said baldly. Kissing Everett would be a bad idea. A very bad idea. He decided in that moment, that as long as he was here, he was not going to kiss Everett. Ever.
Blood Kiss releases August 9th. I'm not doing a pre-order for this one, but you can add it on Goodreads. Be sure to add it to your vampire romance shelves on there too!
And if you'd like to be notified when Blood Kiss is available, you have three options. Sign up for my newsletter, follow me on Bookbub or follow me on Amazon.
Thank you for reading! I can't wait to share Everett and Solan's story with you.
The Sergeant - First Chapter
Sergeant Logan Pierce: He leads his squad with cool efficiency, taking down rough criminals while keeping his team safe. But behind closed doors he sets a darker part of himself free. As a Dom, he’s controlled many submissives, but never had one for his own. That’s because there’s only one man he wants: Officer Clay Foster.
Officer Clay Foster: Over the years he’s noticed his Sergeant’s secretly admiring glances and suspected his attraction. One night, with one kiss, he’s proven correct. Clay dives headlong into the rough passion of BDSM that Logan introduces him to. He submits to Logan’s control, accepting the sweet shackles that bind him to his Sergeant. But secrets, both his and Logan’s, force him to leave the newfound safety of his Dom’s arms.
Logan refuses to let go of what he’s wanted for so long, Clay as his own, proudly wearing his collar. Can he safely guide Clay through the obstacles that separate them until he can claim his submissive once more?
Sergeant Logan Pierce walked back into the police station with his team. Everybody was laughing and relaxed as was usually the case after a successful callout. Their SWAT team was the best on the Houston Police Department and one of the best in the country. Logan’s gaze was drawn to one of his scouts, Corporal Clay Foster. He liked to keep an eye on his boys, his scouts in particular. They had one of the more dangerous jobs, moving first into critical situations to scope them out for the rest of the squad. He wanted to make sure they were handling the stress of their position. But that wasn’t the only reason he watched Clay.
His scout smiled as he described the look on the gunman’s face when he’d realized he was surrounded by SWAT. The entry team blocked his way out the front. He hadn’t been aware of Clay and his other scout, Corporal Quan Pham, at his back. His face was so full of amazement when he spun around and saw them that Clay’s order to get on the ground had been tinged with laughter.
Clay ran his fingers through his hair, the short black curls slightly flattened from his helmet. Logan looked away. He didn’t want anyone to catch the expression on his face as he imagined running his own fingers through that silky hair. He’d desired Clay for a long time, but lately it had grown to the point that it was on his mind whenever they weren’t working.
Clay was definitely attractive with those dark curls. His face was clean shaven and lightly tanned. Long, dark lashes framed blue eyes that were so bright he had to control his reaction the first time he’d looked into them. And Clay’s mouth made him think of all sorts of things that were inappropriate for the work place, especially the sweet curve of his bottom lip. The strong line of his jaw and the hard body that he carried with such confidence kept him from being pretty. And he was tall, only a few inches below Logan’s own height of six foot three. He filled out the dark SWAT uniform very well. Corporal Clay Foster was a mix of beauty, strength, and brave intelligence that had intrigued him for years.
My rambling and not at all edited thoughts on romance novels, writing, and pop culture.