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The Line

by Angel Martinez

Rafael Schiller, vampire and sexual god without peer, believes himself the top of the food chain, until a bizarre creature feeding in an alley scares the deathless hell out of him.

Rafael Schiller’s had a long road and he’s forgotten the meaning of several human words along the way. Commitment? Relationship? Love, for all the gods’ sakes? What does a vampire need those for? He’s completely content treating his long string of one-off lovers as midnight snacks. He makes it good for them and has no reason for guilt or grief. Some nights still induce an odd, hollow ache, but he can just drown it in the next conquest. Master of his universe, he lives without a care…until he encounters a bizarre creature feeding in an alley.

It’s caught his scent, and now that it’s hunting him, Rafael remembers a word from his childhood. Krsnik—the hunters, the monsters who feed on the blood of vampires. He could run, but he’d be running forever, and that would sure as hell take the fun out of life. Time to figure out what the creature really is, what can defeat it, and why he feels so drawn to it.

This book is on:
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Publisher: Pride Publishing
Cover Artists:
Pairings: M-M
Heat Level: 3
Romantic Content: 3
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Gay
Protagonist 1 Age: Ageless/Immortal
Protagonist 2 Age: Ageless/Immortal
Tropes: Alpha Character, Enemies to Lovers, Forbidden Love, Trickster Hero, Cultural Differences
Word Count: 14999
Setting: Seattle
Languages Available: English

“Easy,” Rafael whispered, stroking soothing circles on his meal’s stomach. “Deep breaths.”

The young man beneath him whimpered as Rafael scraped glistening fangs over his throat. With his hands bound tight to the headboard, the human had no way to fend him off and the tang of fear sent spears of delicious desire through Rafael’s core.

The meal squirmed again and Rafael hissed in exasperation. “Hold still, Denny! Do you want a chunk ripped from your throat?” He thrust hard, pegging his dinner’s prostate. Denny arched and yelped in delight.

“Rafael, beautiful Rafael, please take me. Take all of me. Take what you need.”


Why, oh, why do they have to get so melodramatic? With a firm hand on Denny’s forehead, Rafael licked his pulse line, preparing the skin. He snapped his hips with each thrust, pleased when Denny’s legs wrapped around his waist. Precision was the key. Certainly, a vamp could just stab his fangs in and suck the life out of a meal, but where was the fun in that? Life was a buffet and it was so much better to be able to come back for seconds.

Pleasure building at the base of his spine and jaw, Rafael punctured through delicate skin, leaving two surgical-calibre entrance wounds. Hot blood hit his tongue as he fastened his mouth over the holes and sucked. He moaned and bucked, losing rhythm but not enthusiasm as the blood hit his system, sending wicked pleasure through his groin and head. Denny’s wail as he came could have been unpleasant, but he was only aware of it in a distant, sensually drowned way.

Rafael let his body collapse atop his lovely meal, finally still and dazed, as he released the coagulant from his feeding gland. Rule number five, always lick your plate clean and don’t leave a mess behind.

“That was transcendent,” Denny whispered into his hair.

Transcendent? Really? What century is this again? “Glad you enjoyed it. You were very tasty.” Rafael eased his cock out of Denny’s wonderfully tight ass and reached up to undo his hands. “Stay right there and go to sleep. I’ll see myself out, sweets.”

“You’re not staying?” The disappointment in those blue eyes could have been heartbreaking if Rafael had cared.

Rafael stopped halfway through buttoning his shirt and leaned over the bed to give Denny a soft kiss. “And when the hunters break down the door? What then? You’ll fight them off for me? Poor little lamb. You couldn’t fight off a pair of possessed bunny slippers. Go to sleep, Denny. I’ll see you again soon.”

Denny murmured something sleepy and regretful but curled up under the blankets like a good boy while Rafael finished dressing and let himself out. He breathed a sigh of relief when he closed the apartment door. That one would have to go on the maybe list of potential dinners. All those hints at possessive behaviour set off his nuisance alarms. The prey relationship was less messy when they were happy-to-see-you-when-you-decided-to-show-up meals.

Sated, Rafael hummed as he trotted down the stairs. Long ago, in his human life, all the lies would have cost him sleep. No, there were no hunters in Olympia. No, he was not going to burst into flames if the sunlight hit him. Sunlight caused migraines and nasty sunburn, but neither of those things had ever proven deadly. Small details. Humans were food and he left them in puddles of melted ecstasy. Why should he feel guilty?


About the Author

The unlikely black sheep of an ivory tower intellectual family, Angel Martinez has managed to make her way through life reasonably unscathed. Despite a wildly misspent youth, she snagged a degree in English Lit, married once and did it right the first time, gave birth to one amazing son, and realized at some point that she could get paid for writing.

Published since 2006, Angel’s cynical heart cloaks a desperate romantic. You’ll find drama and humor given equal weight in her writing and don’t expect sad endings. Life is sad enough.

She currently lives in Delaware in a drinking town with a college problem and writes Science Fiction and Fantasy centered around gay heroes.