Blood & Stone

Venom Valley Book Three

by Hank Edwards

Blood & Stone - Hank Edwards - Venom Valley
Part of the Venom Valley series:
Editions:Kindle: $ 5.99
ISBN: B06XV5MNK5
Pages: 240

Josh Stanton’s mother has been held prisoner by the vampire Balthazar for fifteen years. As Balthazar has turned the residents of Belkin’s Pass into vampires under his control, Josh, his lover Dex, former saloon girl Glory, and US Army Sergeant Walker Maxwell, fight to contain the undead uprising. The group is pursued to the abandoned Fort Emmerick where Josh learns to better control his power to raise the dead. There they make plans to take the battle to Balthazar’s cave, but will all of them live to see the light of day ever again?

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Published:
Publisher: Independently Published
Editors:
Cover Artists:
Genres:
Tags:
Pairings: MM
Heat Level: 4
Romantic Content: 3
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Gay, Straight
Protagonist 1 Age: 18-25
Protagonist 2 Age: 18-25
Protagonist 3 Age: 18-25
Tropes: Friends to Lovers, Hero and the Great Quest, Lone Wolf
Word Count: 78500
Setting: American Old West
Languages Available: English
Series Type: Continuous / Same Characters
Excerpt:

"Come outside, Joshua Stanton." The voice was quiet, the timbre low, promising release and an end to Josh's exhausted struggle. "Open the door and step onto the porch. Let me kiss you, taste your blood, compare yours to that of your man's."

Josh shuddered awake and staggered to his feet, his hands tight on the barrel of the musket. His eyes were gritty from sleep and he couldn't seem to focus on where he was for a long, frightening moment. Then, in a rush, it all came back to him: Dex had escaped from Balthazar, they had taken refuge in the Belkin's Pass church along with Sergeant Maxwell and his few remaining soldiers. And he had fallen asleep during guard duty.

"Come to me," the calm, deep voice beckoned. "Step outside, join me."

Josh turned to peer through the narrow gap in the boards nailed over the window behind him. "Never, you foul monster. Leave us."

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A deep chuckle floated in from the dark night beyond the glass. "You're running out of time, Joshua. Your man is closer to vampire than human now. One mistake, one careless moment, and he will join me. We can end this now, tonight, and spare all those sleeping around you the pain of day after day of struggle. You are the one I want, not them. Come join me, teach me of this secret power, and live forever by my side. Just open the doors."

Josh shook his head as he scanned the dark shadows that hung around the empty buildings across the street. Would Belkin's Pass ever be like it had once been? Filled with people and goods and commerce? He didn't think so. It would be consumed by the prairie, abandoned and haunted. Right now, in the depth of night, surrounded by evil, it felt to Josh as if the whole country had forsaken them.

He gathered his courage from the corners of his soul and said, "I will never join you. We'll come for you, you know."

A pair of glowing red eyes appeared before him, and Josh stepped back, a gasp slipping from his lips. Before he could be caught by Balthazar's stare and put under his spell, Josh looked away.

"Oh, I hope you come for me," Balthazar whispered. "I do, indeed."

COLLAPSE

About the Author

Hank Edwards is a curious mix of practical realist and feral dreamer. He is a fan of absurd comedy, as evidenced in the sizzling and hilarious Charlie Heggensford Fluffers, Inc. series, as well as Plus Ones, his wacky rom-com. He also loves a good mystery and suspense story, which inspired his Up to Trouble series, featuring FBI Agent Aaron Pearce and his lover Mark Beecher who met during one case and have gone on to solve others. His love of chills and thrills prompted him to create the Venom Valley series, which combines vampires and zombies with Old West cowboys as well as the humorous paranormal Critter Catchers series. He has also written a number of standalone stories, such as the humorous murder mystery Repossession is 9/10ths of the Law, the sexy crime thriller Buried Secrets, as well as the chilling and spooky Wicked Reflection.