Nothing Left of Me

by J. Hali Steele

Nothing Left of Me - J. Hali Steele
Editions:Kindle - First Edition: $ 2.99
ISBN: B07RHV3NR2
Pages: 100

Beauty is not fleeting when worn by an immortal.

An erotic liaison will leave humans vulnerable to blood thirsty monsters!

Brax Sevan oversees immortals populating earth; wily creatures humans ridiculously explain away with childish tales of boogeymen. He ensures annihilation of beasts who become careless and those who defiantly flaunt his rules. Curiosity as much as outrage sends him to delve into why one of his was killed by another vampire. What Brax finds sways steadfast objectivity, strips him of calm reserve and aloofness honed over many lifetimes. The guilty individual starts a fire that will not be suppressed and what Brax does next may cost his powerful position.

Cador Ridge spent hundreds of years as a consort to emperors, kings, powerful men from every walk of life, but he bows to no one. Then or now. His existence, though hard and sometimes rife with loneliness, is tolerable until another like him dies at Cador’s hand. Running was useless as there is no place to hide from their self-appointed leader whom he has managed to avoid for centuries. He didn’t expect Lord Vampire himself to pay a personal visit nor did Cador believe the contemptuous bastard would steal everything—but his life!

Contains: #death, #dirtytalk, #dubcon, #gay, #horror, #mystery, #religerotica, #roughsex, #vampire, #voyeurism

This book is on:
  • 2 To Be Read lists
Published:
Publisher: Independently Published
Genres:
Tags:
Pairings: MM
Heat Level: 5
Romantic Content: 4
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Gay
Protagonist 1 Age: Ageless/Immortal
Protagonist 2 Age: Ageless/Immortal
Protagonist 3 Age: Ageless/Immortal
Tropes: Big Character / Little Character, Bodyguard/Guardian Angel, Enemies to Lovers, Fated Mates / Soul Mates, Rescue
Word Count: 29000
Setting: USA, California, Los Angeles, High Desert
Languages Available: English
Excerpt:

God’s sake. He took a step forward and Cador grabbed a handful of shirt sending a spray of buttons around the floor. Hoisting the big bastard upward, he walked from behind the bar as the front door screeched open. Air crackled, the room vibrated, as a bizarre sensation leached through him. Unruly drunk dropped to the floor banging his face on the corner of the bar as Cador endeavored to shake it off. Blood oozed from his wound. “Hells bells.” Ignoring the man who entered, Cador positioned his body to interrupt the newcomer’s line of sight. Licking his finger, he rubbed saliva on the cut and lifted the man to his feet. “Stand there and shut up,” he mumbled.

“Huh?”

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He’d have to hail a cab for the intoxicated fool since sobering him up while being watched wasn’t a good idea. Cador hadn’t fully accomplished ridding himself of the strange vibe in his club. He turned to survey the man who remained near the entrance. Son of a bitch! Milliseconds slipped by in slow motion. From stance to glower, Cador recognized he stared at one hell of a master enforcer. It was written all over the handsome face. Add to that, power rippled around him in waves. A human wouldn’t notice but Cador did and it explained the earlier fizzle in the air. I’ve seen him before.

“Cador Ridge.”

“That wasn’t posed as a question and since you didn’t use my new name, you already have the answer.” A black suit perfectly covered his frame but he didn’t wear a tie. A freaking giant with medium length, dark hair swept back from cheek bones that bordered on gaunt though thickness straining material proved he, by no means, could be called thin. A mysterious look all vampires wore magnificently graced his handsome face. Flawless golden skin beckoned Cador’s fingers as a familiar feeling trickled down his spine leaving him colder than usual. Thundercloud gray eyes never blinked. At least they didn’t hold hellish fire. Yet. Jesus, he was huge and he exuded sex appeal to the extent Cador damn near snuffled air. Having more strength than most, he should have recognized the earlier disturbance causing him to drop his provoker.

Strolling across the space, the vampire swiped a finger along the injured man’s cheek, licked it, and an unseen snap sounded before the guy dematerialized. “He’s home safely.” Sitting, he inquired, “Can you make a Manhattan?”

If that was reference to how old he thought Cador might be, it gave him an advantage especially as he’d managed to change identification twice in the last century outside of normal supernatural channels. How had he escaped being bitten and trailed for centuries? Fucking lucky is what he was. More than likely it was protection of the powerful men he aligned himself with. Whatever the case, his luck had run out. Shit, he had Cador’s real name. So much for fake identification. How much had the enforcer been told? He returned behind the counter. “Haven’t made one in years.” Older blood suckers were called upon to hunt but Cador couldn’t go by looks which, he knew firsthand, tremendously misrepresented age. Eyes arrowing into him appeared sage and rife with knowledge. “But we have excellent memory recall, right?” Steadying his hand by gripping a bottle, he figured, what the hell. Give him something to remember before he did whatever he came to do to Cador who could put up a hell of a fight but lose anyway.

Vampires only drank very weak, mixed alcohol beverages. Fledglings avoided it totally. Liquor rushed through their veins causing a sudden drop in blood pressure creating a situation where it not only robbed them of abilities for an indeterminate amount of time, it incapacitated undead for hours or days. Good, it would give Cador time for…what? Vanishing or…? Don’t even go there! His mind was safe but he had a suspicion the one before him would sniff him out instantly no matter where he turned up. Squirrely gray eyes continued to scrutinize. Using bottles already on the lower counter behind the bar, he prepared his specialty, one known to put humans used to drinking heavily flat on their asses. Sitting his concoction on the bar top, he winked, “Enjoy.”

The enforcer turned the tumbler up and swallowed every bit. Slowly setting the glass down, he quietly stated, “That’s not what I asked for.”

An ancient! Cador’s time had definitely expired and expecting this day to come; he didn’t like that it had arrived. “Worth a try. Gin and bourbon, both over one hundred proof, and a very big splash of orange liqueur. I call it a Ginetic Mistake.” Shrugging, he added, “Fitting, don’t you think?”

“For him to be subdued in an obvious manner,” he waved at the empty glass, “I take it you were close?”

“I’ve had a hell of a night so let’s get this over with.” A sigh slipped out. “Why did he have to dispatch such a sexy undead piece of ass?”

Eyes darkened with a spark of interest before red flared to life. “Why did you disobey our most sacred rule?”

“Would it matter?” Cador had lived a long, exciting life and he refused to display weakness. He whisked on an outfit he felt appropriate to meet death; nothing like stodgy black slacks and white shirt he insisted every one wear while working at Intense. Clientele tended to keep hands to themselves when employees imitated being dull. Such mundane thoughts. He mixed a double Ginetic aware he required something strong to knock himself down. Placing it on the bar, he circled back around to stand in front of his executioner. At least he’d feel no pain when the wretched beast ripped his heart out.

“Probably not.” Perfectly manicured fingernails rapped against wood. “But I’d like to hear what you have to say.”

“Considering shyster vamp almighty surrounds himself with hooligans, I didn’t expect one to pretend to listen. I’ll venture the monster didn’t say be nice.” Cador had covered himself in soft, pretty crimson silk that the overhead fan billowed around his small frame. A light rested in eyes raking Cador’s slender five-foot nine inches. Excitement didn’t surprise him as he’d already noted that reaction. But amusement! “Another place and time we may have appreciated each other’s company.” He picked up his drink. “Did I use trickery? Yes.” Cador dared to touch the creature’s cheek with his free hand. Again, the impression of having met the vampire bombarded him. “We were not close at all. In fact, I detested him.” He pushed his notion of familiarity aside. “The creep wouldn’t take no for an answer.” Cador lifted his glass in salute to the immortal, then downed it in one gulp. Swiping the back of his hand across his lips, he asked, “May I at least hear the name of my executioner?”

“Brax Sevan.”

“Oh hell.” Last thing Cador remembered was floating toward the floor.

COLLAPSE

About the Author

J. Hali Steele wishes she could grow fur, wings, or fangs, so she can stay warm, fly, or just plain bite the crap out of... Well, she can't do those things but she wishes she could! Multi-published author of Romance including Contemporary, LGBTQ, Paranormal, and ReligErotica stories where humans, vampyres, shapeshifters and angels often collide—they collide a lot! When J. Hali's not writing or reading, she can be found snuggled in front of the TV with a cat in her lap, and a cup of coffee.

My Quotes:

Growl and roar—it's okay to let the beast out. – J. Hali Steele

Death is overrated as punishment. – J. Hali Steele (from The Descendants)

Life is complicated, it’s loud, death arrives silently. – J. Hali Steele (from Twice the Burn)


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