Excerpt from A Vampire's Tale

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At this point in the story, Marisa discovers her life is in danger...

She glared at him. Why am I not safe? She pushed away her empty plate.

You have a healthy appetite, love. He flashed a suggestive look, sending shivers down her spine all the way to her toes.

But she would not let him distract her from her questions. Corgan, tell me why I'm not safe.

Oh, little one. He scooped her into his arms and settled her on his lap in the chair before she blinked her eyes. He buried his face into her hair. "It's all my fault."

"What's your fault?"

The connection of past and future, the path we are traveling on, they all lead to

Marisa felt Corgan's intense pain and saw the grey gravestone marker in his mind. The one marked with her name on it.

Our blood bond puts you at risk. My enemies will be able to track you and hunt you down. The only way I can ensure your absolute safety is to claim you.

His grip on her tightened.

What's a claiming? Why isn't that an option?

If I claim you, you will die.

Tension and fear gripped every pore of her body. Either way I die?

Jumping out of his lap, she shrieked, "What did you think would happen? You saw this in a vision and did nothing to stop it? You still introduced yourself to me? Embedded yourself in my life? Made me care for you? Made me—" She choked on her words. "So, I have the choice of being hunted down by your enemies and killed, or letting you claim me and dying—how? By some mysterious, less painful way?"

He held his hand out to her. "I can see you're upset—"

"Damn straight I'm upset!"

"We will find a way to make things right." He waved his hand in the air. "You are calm now. There is no need to be alarmed."

"Yeah, that's not going to work on me, mister." She tapped her foot impatiently. "Aren't we beyond mind tricks?"

Corgan sighed and his face drooped.

He looked so abandoned, like he'd lost everything. Her stomach flipped and rolled. Maybe I overreacted? "Okay, so claiming seems like the best option. How does that work?"

"It's very similar to a human marriage ceremony."

"You're proposing marriage?" she shrieked. "We just met, like, a week ago."

"You met me only recently, but I have known you for years," he replied.

"Oh." Semi creepy. Not sure how I should take that.

Now, quiet your mind, little one, and I'll show you what I mean.

In a dimly lit room, she saw a high altar and three people. A man dressed in robes, she assumed the priest, stood in the middle with a man and woman kneeling in front of him. The man stood, helping the woman up. The priest produced a gold chalice and ancient-looking dagger. The bride and groom extended their arms, and the priest slashed their wrists with one efficient cut. The man's fangs extended with a hiss while the woman caressed his arm. The blood from their wrists dripped into the chalice.

The priest set the dagger down and offered the chalice to the groom. He drank quickly and passed it to his bride. After drinking, she handed the chalice back to the priest. Some words were spoken in the strange language Corgan often used. Then the bride and groom kissed, as blood dripped down their arms. The desire between them was apparent, the exchange of blood seemingly an aphrodisiac. After a quick nod from the priest, the couple circled around and disappeared in a puff of smoke.

It seemed like a symbolic and ancient ritual. Made in blood and sealed with a mating. She and Corgan had shared blood, but she didn't know if she was ready to take the next step. Typically, she over-thought relationships—and pretty much everything else—to the point where there was no more relationship.

Apparently, no move is as wrong a move as the wrong move. She just didn't want to do anything she would regret later in life. This step they were contemplating... Well, it seemed a bit fast for her, propelling her into uncharted territory.

Interested in reading Marisa and Corgan's story? A Vampire's Tale, The Magicals Series Book #1, is available now in all electronic formats. http://tirgearrpublishing.com/authors/Tyler_Maya/a-vampires-tale.htm

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