Monday, June 13, 2011

Sneak Preview - Blood Bound (ISS#4) - Chapter 1

***If you have not read Divine Ashes (ISS#3), please wait to read this. There are major SPOILERS in this chapter. ***


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Sneak Preview

Blood Bound – Imprinted Souls Series #4

Chapter 1

Life… Death… I’m not even sure at what point it all turned into a cruel joke; a joke where what I had wished for turned out to be what I now hated the most.

That night started out just like any other night. I was home alone, waiting for my maker, Nicholas, to return so that he could take me hunting. It had been three months and he still didn’t trust me to go by myself. He was just so sure that I would not clean up my mess and that he would have to pay the consequences. Not to mention that he was paranoid about others looking for me.

Three months! ... Three months since I was turned into a vampire… Three months since I asked Nicholas to take me away from Tyler so that he would not see me like this, even though Tyler was a vampire himself… Three months since we moved into one of Scarlett’s hideouts, this one in Treviso, Italy… And three months since my parents were told that I had died in a terrible accident.

Tyler had been right. I would not be the same once I was turned.

It was strange that in a way, I wasn’t even mad at Nicholas for doing what he did. It was bound to happen eventually, and I guess better him turning me than Anne or Scarlett. I didn’t even care to ask him why he did it. Maybe he was just really tired of the drama. Either way, I had more important things to worry about.

When I wasn’t focused on feeding, which happened a lot, I was worried about not letting Tyler find me through our imprint. The extent that I went to, to make sure that didn’t happen was just as awful as the monster I had become.

I just couldn’t understand it. It was not often when I was lucid enough to know through the imprint that he was in pain and that he was searching for me, but I couldn’t understand the reason. He felt when I was turned. He knew that when that happened I would change, and besides, I was not like him. I didn’t have the control that he did. I fed on people and I felt no remorse… at least not for my actions… That was just who I had become.

Only two things hadn’t changed. I loved Tyler just the same and our imprint was still there.

Whenever Nicholas was gone for long and I had to endure the feelings of that Imprint with Tyler, it was agonizing. There was only one way to sooth that agony… blood. Only, I was starting to build some kind of immunity to it. Over time it took more and more of it to make me feel numb, to make the imprint fade… and it was always only temporary.

One night in particular stood out. Nicholas called me saying that he would be late, but that he was bringing me dinner. Nicholas hadn’t changed one bit, even after taking most of what belonged to Scarlett, after destroying her… He was still the same sarcastic guy who I just couldn’t read. One minute he was the nicest guy, the next, he was a complete jerk who only cared about himself.

Mostly, he treated me the same as before. I didn’t even think that he ever turned anyone before me, mostly because half of the time he couldn’t answer my questions. My imprint with Tyler, for instance, he had no idea why I still felt it.

As my maker, Nicholas and I also share a strong bond, and I sometimes got the impression that he was hiding something…. I definitely got the feeling that he didn’t want to have that much responsibility for having me turned…by having me around.

When Nicholas got home, I had the radio on so loud that I didn’t even hear the door. As usual, I could feel the imprint coming back. Tyler was in pain, and he was trying to call out to me. Having the radio on that loud was my lame attempt to make sure I just couldn’t think. Anyway, I could not hear Nicholas coming in, but I could smell the sweet scent of blood and I could hardly wait to feed. Not just because I was thirsty, but also because that was the only way to shut out everything else.

Nicholas walked in followed by a guy and a girl. He headed straight for the stereo and turned it off.

“I know—I know, sorry I took so long,” he said.

Both the guy and girl were glamoured. They were both about our age. Both tanned and just plain full of life…

Nicholas looked at the guy, “Lexi, this is Marco… all yours!”

“Is this some kind of joke?” I asked him, furious. “I told you I’m not feeding on any guys.”

“Come on, Lexi! You know that as much as I think it is hot to watch you feed from girls, Marco here is not my type. It is just not going to happen. Besides, I still don’t get it… it is not like you are cheating on—“ My face got even more pale.

“Sorry! You know I didn’t mean to bring it up. You can have her… I just fed anyway. Guess Marco lucked out. I will make sure he is gone.”

Nicholas escorted Marco outside, returning within minutes.

He walked in on me sitting in the corner, crying, and the girl lying lifeless on the floor.

“Damn, that was fast. I guess I missed the show, huh?” He said.

“Shut up, Nicholas. I can still feel it… the imprint… you should have brought more.”

“I can go back and get Marco… he shouldn’t be too far,” he smiled.

“No!” I told him. “I need to feed from you, or you from me, that is the only thing that helps.”

“Lexi, I don’t know how much more I can take. I mean, you know that being your maker I can sense that the imprint with him is still there, but every time we do that I can feel how strong this damn imprint is and honestly, it is freaking annoying.”

“But that is the only way I can’t feel it…”

“Stop begging, Lexi. That is quite unattractive. Besides, the effects are only temporary anyway. You know that it won’t be long before you can feel it again. You just need to learn how to deal with it… starting now.”

I got up and without saying anything I stormed out of the room.

Keeping my mind off Tyler was not easy. I had to literally force myself to think of anything besides him or where we were. I didn’t want to give him any indication of where we were, although I was sure I had slipped a few times. Good thing Nicholas made sure I stayed inside, so I had no sight of actual locations in town.

Not much later, the house got quiet. I hoped that Nicholas had left for a while. I knew that in his room, he kept a couple of bags of donated blood in the fridge. He wouldn’t allow me to have more than one a day, which was fine by me, because it was just so disgusting. But at that moment, it was my last resort. I kept hearing Tyler’s voice asking me to go back or to show him where I was… I just couldn’t take it anymore.

I quickly snuck in Nicholas’ room to grab the bags of blood, and found out that he had company. This blond girl just sat on the bed, looking around as if she was lost.

“Where is Nicholas?” I asked her.

“I’m not sure.” The girl said in a distant voice. “He said he would be back soon.”

In a blur of movements, I moved closer to her. Knowing that the glamour would be gone as soon as I bit her, I had to make the necessary movements to make sure that she didn’t have time to scream. I snapped her neck before biting it, and quickly started to drink from her.

It was hard to describe the feeling. It was almost as if I had a horrible headache, and as soon as I started drinking her blood, that pressure was relieved. I drank, and drank, until Nicholas came barging in the room.

“Damn it, Lexi! Do you know how hard it is to get girls in town at this time?”

I stopped drinking, only because there was nothing left. I dropped the girl’s body on the floor, wiped my mouth with the back of my hand and met Nicholas’ gaze, “You left me no choice!”

“You know, I’m really starting to regret turning you,” he said.

“Well, you should have thought about that before.”

“I did, and I honestly didn’t think I would have to babysit you like this.”

“Okay, what exactly did you expect? After all, you are my maker.”

Nicholas shook his head. “Just… never mind.”

All of a sudden, it felt as if my head was throbbing.

Nicholas was by my side within seconds. “What is wrong?”

“The usual…and it is just getting worse. After I drink… when the imprint returns it is like I’m hit with a wave of emotions.”

“Ugh! Fine, you can drink from me. I still don’t understand what the heck is going on, but I realized the past few times that I don’t get as involved in this imprint mess when you drink from me instead of me drinking from you… which is messed up, if you ask me,” he winked.

I rolled my eyes, before grabbing his wrist, which was now extended in my direction. Before I started drinking, Nicholas said, “You know, this would be a lot more pleasant for me if you drank from my neck instead.”

As usual, I ignored him.

He looked extremely bored as I drank. “Isn’t it funny how you won’t drink from human guys, but you have no problem drinking from me?”

I moved my lips away from his wrist for a split second. “It is just different, you know that.”

“Yeah, I know. I’m just that awesome.”

“Don’t flatter yourself. You know it is different because your blood numbs out the imprint for longer than a human’s blood does.”

“Yeah, well, I’m sticking to the ‘I’m awesome theory’. Are you done?”

I nodded.

“Good, I guess now I have to replenish my fluids. I’m assuming my little visitor kept you away from the donated blood… right?”

“Yes. That stuff is disgusting.”

“True, and that is exactly why you owe me for this.”

I rolled my eyes again, before leaving the room to try and find something that would help pass time… time that I now had plenty of.

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