“You are a most excellent hunter,” Cyrus says. “In that, you are indeed like Sevan.”But his words are background noise. I pull. One long drink after another.“And you certainly have picked a beautiful specimen,” Cyrus says approvingly. He walks around the two of us. And as my belly fills with the blood of this person, the heady fog fades from my brain. I feel my animalistic side begin to ebb. The predator is satisfied. And the humanity in me returns once more.
My fangs instantly retract. The individual I’m holding onto collapses to the ground as I let go and take five horrified steps away.
It’s a woman. She’s young, probably no more than a year or two older than myself. Her eyes are closed, blood running down her neck from the two puncture wounds. Her face is beautiful yet intimidating. Harsh cheekbones, a square, sharp jawline. Long brunette hair, lighter than my own, falls around her in soft waves.
“You need not feel ashamed, my dear,” Cyrus says as he crosses to me and pulls me into his arms. “This is what our kind does. It is our instinct and without following it, we experience something worse than death. Do not be regretful for what you are.”
But my eyes stay staring at the woman, wide and horrified. This is my third victim. And I can’t seem to help it. My thirst takes over and I kill.
I kill innocent people.
I watch as all the color leaves the woman’s face, she grows white and her lips look blue.
“Come,” Cyrus says. He releases me, but holds onto my hand and pulls me toward the door once more. “Let us finish the delicious meal you prepared for us and think of this no more.”
Keary Taylor is the USA TODAY bestselling author of over a dozen novels. She grew up along the foothills of the Rocky Mountains where she started creating imaginary worlds and daring characters who always fell in love. She now splits her time between a tiny island in the Pacific Northwest and Utah, with her husband and their two children. She continues to have an overactive imagination that frequently keeps her up at night.
In 2009, after being rejected by over 100 literary agents, Keary decided to give self-publishing a try. Since that side of the industry had yet to really blossom, Keary had a lot of learning to do since she didn’t know anyone else who was self-publishing and made a lot of mistakes in the beginning. But she continued to better her work and her means of publishing and it paid off in a big way. She hit the USA TODAY bestsellers list in 2016. In 2011, she was listed in The Wall Street Journal as a “Self-Published Bestseller;” every one of her books has made it into a top 100 category, and her books have had over a million downloads. She now makes a very good living continuing to self-publish.