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A Taste of Wake Me When the Sun Goes Down

I’m done with the first pass of edits for my new vampire series Wake Me When the Sun Goes Down! So now it’s off to the next part of my editing team and I thought I’d share a little taste.

This scene takes place after Anja finds out that Bishop is there to take her into custody since she doesn’t have the proper license to be a new vampire. It’s from his POV and has a little bit of insight into why he’s there and his role in The Order.

Bishop had no idea what he was doing.

It was not a normal thing for him, not by a long shot. In fact, he couldn’t remember the last time he’d gone so far off book. It was supposed to be a routine call. Check the girl’s papers, fine her Sire for letting her turn up in the morgue pronounced as dead, and do what he did best; scare the hell out of him to keep him from ever getting sloppy like that again. So why was he standing in her living room holding her purse while she made herself pretty?

He wasn’t used to letting a slip of a girl wind him around her little finger. But there was something about her… when she’d first opened the door the night before, she’d knocked him speechless. For a moment he’d almost thought he was seeing Carys again after so many years…

She wasn’t, of course. They had the same long, golden hair, the same heart shaped face and her innocent, blue eyes were close. But her mouth was wrong; the lips too full, her smile too hesitant. Not that there was anything wrong with the girl’s lips… why was he thinking about her lips again?

The Order always came first. He’d pledged his life too many years ago to count. For endless nights he’d upheld the laws, meting out justice as he saw fit. Bishop was more successful at it than most because while he didn’t have a love of violence, he recognized when it needed to be used without anger, and understood just how much pressure to apply. So while his first instinct had been to try and protect Anja, his sense of duty led him to do the right thing. She had to be taken into custody. Let one go and you set a dangerous precedent; wasn’t that how he’d been trained? And if it became necessary to close those pretty, blue eyes forever? He would deal with it when the time came.

Speaking of time, he’d been more than generous in allowing her time to change into dry clothing. It wasn’t as if she could catch a chill now, and where she was going there wasn’t any need for fancy preparations. Bishop set down her bag, approaching the bedroom door with a brief knock. “Miss Evans? I don’t mean to be rude, but do you think you could hurry it up?” Nothing but silence greeted his ears, and he frowned as he rapped again. “Miss Evans?”

Instead of her meek little voice asking for more time as he half expected, his ears picked up an “oof” from much too far away… Privacy be damned, Bishop shouldered her door open, taking in the deserted room and going immediately to the open window. Damn it… if Mason heard about this he’d never hear the end of it.

Dropping to the street below, he watched as she loped off like a gazelle, her newly energized limbs propelling her faster than she had any right to move. She would have been a blur to human eyes, but Bishop tracked her easily, a little stunned at her speed and grace. Most newborns didn’t master such speed for quite some time. He’d spoken too soon, Anja clearly hadn’t learned control as she took a corner too broadly, careening into the side of a building hard enough to send a cloud of dust up at the crumbling mortar. “That’s got to hurt,” Bishop winced in sympathy before he took off after her, anticipating an easy chase.

He was wrong.

There was nothing easy about the chase she led him on. The girl obviously knew the city well and used it to her advantage. Despite his superior strength and speed, Bishop had a hard time keeping her in his sights. If he hadn’t known any better, he would have guessed her to be a much older vampire; certainly not a noob on her first run. But it wasn’t his first rodeo either. Knowing how to anticipate his quarry’s moves was a skill he’d learned well, and after following her for a while, he figured out how best to trap her.

Cutting sharply to the left, he abandoned the chase, instead diverting to the path he predicted she would take. Sure enough, a few seconds later, Anja turned into the alley and Bishop pounced, his momentum sending them both crashing to the ground. Anja struggled, arms and legs flailing until he pinned her with his body to keep her still. Even with his hands firmly securing her wrists, she continued to resist, her eyes scrunched tightly shut. She even managed to break one arm free until Bishop slammed it back down against the pavement a little harder than he’d intended, and her expressive, blue eyes opened, a soft cry of pain issuing from the back of her throat.

All at once they both stilled, her body struggling to catch breath it didn’t need out of habit. “I’m sorry,” she whimpered, and he felt like the worst bully for having caused her pain.

“No, I’m sorry; I didn’t mean to hurt you.” His eyes swept over her face, relieved when the sting of pain faded from her features; the damage seemed to be fleeting. The fact that it bothered him in the first place was far more troublesome.

Anja blinked, eyes shiny with unshed tears. “Please… let me go. Nobody has to know about me, do they?”

“That’s not the point. This isn’t a minor infraction, you and your Sire need to face the consequences of your actions.”

“But that’s just it, I didn’t do anything! I didn’t choose this life, or afterlife, or whatever you want to call it. If you want to punish someone, punish the guy who did this to me.”

“I will, I just have to find him.”

“So let’s find him then, I’ll help you,” she nodded earnestly, as if he needed it.

“I don’t need your help.”

“Then how will you do it?”

Her lack of faith was a little irritating, but Bishop reminded himself that she didn’t know much about him or the Order. “I’ll start with where you were found, the police should be done with their investigation by now; it’s time to bring my team in.”

“You know where I was found?” she blinked.

“Give me some credit; I’ve been doing this for a long time.”

“How long?”

“Long enough to recognize when someone is stalling me. Anja, I have to take you in.” It surprised the hell out of him to find that he wished it could be otherwise. Conscious of the fact that she felt soft beneath him and it had been far too long since he’d had a woman as appealing in his arms, he shifted uncomfortably. That just made it worse. Still, he made no move to get up yet, unable leave the sweet torment.

“Bishop please, don’t make me pay for something he did. Let me help you find him, and if he has broken your laws… then I’ll pay the consequences.”

How many times had another pair of blue eyes looked up at him in that same way? And how many times had he found himself lost to their power, as he was now…

Enough distraction. Bishop pulled them both to their feet, keeping careful hold of one of her wrists. “I will take you with me to the crime scene to see what we can find, that’s it. If we hit a dead end, I’m taking you in, deal?”

“Deal,” she nodded instantly, and he couldn’t believe he was even considering this.

“And no more trying to escape. You saw how easy it was for me to catch you.” Though it was much harder than it should have been.

“I understand, I promise I’ll be good,” she brightened immediately, her smile radiant.

“I’d better not regret this.” Bishop backed Anja up against the wall, looming close to make his point, dwarfing her petite frame. “Up until now I’ve been fairly considerate of your unusual situation, but you wouldn’t want to make me angry,” he cautioned, wanting to make sure she absolutely understood that this decision to alter his plans didn’t mean he was weak.

Her eyes widened a little, but he didn’t think she was afraid of him. A slim hand pressed against his chest defensively, and he was surprised to find it offered considerably more resistance than he would have thought. She was a strong little thing, especially against someone as old as he was.

“I won’t. Thank you, Bishop.”

With a nod he eased back, watching her warily as they walked back to his black SUV parked up the block from her apartment.

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