Genre: Adult, paranormal Publisher: Rainstorm Press ISBN: 1937758400 ISBN-13: 978-1937758400 Number of pages: 218 Word Count: 85,000 words Formats available: Print. E-book
Cover Artist: John Cosentino
Her soft golden skin, her warm smile…these are the only images Veronica Austin has left of her mother who disappeared without a trace twenty years ago on the streets of Minneapolis while researching the Ramanga, the Lamia, the Metusba, and the Lugat. Known only as the Deamhan, they are a different breed from the modern bloodsucking vampire.
A stranger to this world, Veronica’s search for the truth about her mother’s unexplained disappearance takes her into their sinister and precarious world. She gains the trust of the only other human familiar with the Deamhan lifestyle. With his help she finds not only can the Deamhan not be trusted but it’s her own father, president of a ruthful organization of researchers, who has diabolically maintained that distrust.
Veronica gulped her drink and wiped her mouth with the back of her hand, this time thankful for the sensation of the amber liquid searing her throat. She preferred vodka, but at this moment, any liquid running down her gullet was good enough.
“You want another one?” she asked. Veronica nodded, and the waitress left. Veronica dropped her face to her hands, trying to readjust. Damn, this is harder than I thought it'd be. Her mind raced: hide your thoughts, don't show fear, stick to the plan.
She felt a tingling sensation deep in her forehead. In seconds, it had increased to the extent of a migraine. She looked up squinting, the pain becoming more intense with each passing moment, and she knew.
Someone is reading my thoughts.
The waitress returned with two drinks. She placed them in front of Veronica.
“Uh, thanks?” Veronica couldn't recall ordering two whiskeys, but she pulled out a ten.
“It's already paid for.” The waitress pointed to a man sitting at the opposite end of the bar, his long brown hair slicked back in a ponytail. He wore black jeans and a long black see-through shirt, revealing pierced nipples and a six-pack. Beautiful.
He stared at Veronica with deep brown eyes and smiled, his pale skin resembling a Deamhan at its finest. She felt the pain in her forehead ebb and flow, subsiding a bit each time. Veronica turned to the waitress, but she'd again disappeared.
Muddled, she downed the whiskey and slammed the empty glass on the table in front of her. She shut her eyes and concentrated on emptying her mind. The pain diffused into a mild tingling.
Veronica snapped her eyes open when a male voice told her to not be afraid. She whipped around, but no one was near.
The voice came from within her head.
“It's okay,” the voice said.
She looked at the man, who still fixed her in his stare, and he slid from his seat and headed her way.
She dropped her head and stared at the counter. She fought the urge to fling her glass at him and run. Leaving Dark Sepulcher wouldn't answer the questions about her mother's disappearance. Don't think of Mom. She quickly visualized the brick wall.
“Your thoughts stick out,” the man said, taking the empty stool next to her.
His penetrating stare caused Veronica's head to tingle again, but the tingle stopped as quickly as it started. She'd clouded his attempt to rummage through her mind.
Veronica cupped the whiskey glass and stared into its glowing liquid.
“Beautiful women like you shouldn't drink whiskey.”
What a line. His respectful approach did nothing to impress Veronica. The Deamhan were naturally devious.
Veronica remained quiet. The stranger smiled and reached for the glass, grasping it from the rim and placing it front of him.
“I'm trying to start a conversation,” he prompted.
From the corner of her eye, Veronica saw him examine her. His eyes roved her short, formal straight brunette hair, her face, and finally her hands. Even over the din of music, she could hear him inhale her virginal scent. She tried hard to block her thoughts from him, but the tingle told her she was failing.
“You should know it turns me on when you do that,” he said.
She glanced at him, making eye contact for a second and then quickly looked away. He mumbled something, but his voice was too low for her to hear over the blaring speakers.
Veronica's thoughts caught his attention again, and he leaned back on the stool, studying her.
Veronica understood now how a woman could fall for a man like that. Most of the men in Dark Sepulcher were attractive, but this man was hot. She stole a covert glance from under her eyelashes. Tall, medium build, long, glossy hair--stop it. Stay off that bandwagon.
His full lips broke into a smile. “Sorry I intruded on your thoughts. But I gotta admit, I like what I see in there.”
Veronica felt heat rise in her chest, neck and face. Busted. He offered his hand, another trick she wouldn't fall for.
“I'm Remy and you are?”
Remy. The name sounded too familiar. Veronica recalled the name listed somewhere on the documents she'd stolen from The Brotherhood. His name was just one of the many that stuck out to her but at the moment she couldn't remember why.
She fixed her thoughts on her napkin, staring at the condensation ring left by the wet glass. Still her mind wouldn't quiet. What Deamhan type is he? Until she knew which, she couldn't be sure of his level of threat. She couldn't get too close.
Despite herself, she stole a quick look in his direction.
He flashed a ready smile.
Teeth aren't sharp and pointy. He's not a Ramanga. She stared again at her drink, wiping the droplets of water from the side of her glass.
“Am I scaring you?” Remy's voice interrupted Veronica's thoughts. She shook her head and remained silent.
“Do you talk?”
“Not to strangers.” She immediately regretted her gutsy remark, knowing it would intrigue him further.
“Maybe you should.” He traced the rim of the glass with a slender, pale finger. “You're new here.”
Veronica wanted to check him out but knew she should avoid his eye. She looked over her shoulder and then at the ceiling. She glanced at the sticky floor and studied the woodwork on the bar.
He'd read her like an open book. She felt a tiny tingle as he tried again to read her thoughts.
“Your thoughts. They come to me kinda like a movie: sometimes clear, other times fuzzy.” He chuckled. “Right now, they're crystal. Do you really find the bar's wood grain that intriguing?”
Veronica couldn't help but grin.
“Do you smell that?” His voice dropped to a loud whisper. “I smell a vampire.”
Remy's eyes fixated over Veronica's shoulder.
The dark woman from the bathroom sashayed over and leaned against the bar on the other side of Veronica.
Veronica hardly recognized her. She now wore the professional attire of a business woman: grayish slacks, a red blouse, and a gray suit jacket. She'd styled her hair into a chic ponytail and glossed her lips in red.
Remy and the woman locked eyes.
Veronica felt a fierce, electrical tension emanating from the two, and glanced back and forth between them. The woman smirked, and Remy smiled nonchalantly.
“She's mine, Remy,” she said. “He said I can have her.”
Remy revealed his even, pearly teeth, his finger still tracing the rim of the glass. “Already tired of the other one?” he asked.
Unable to stand the crackling air between the two, Veronica slid from the stool.
The woman placed her hands on her hips, blocking Veronica's escape with her elbow. Remy smiled. “Not every female who strolls into Dark Sepulcher belongs to you, Alexis.”
Veronica made a mental note of the vampire's name.
“But this little catch is stirring up the attention.” Her lips puckered.
“Oh, that's it,” Remy said. “You just want to be the first to take her.”
Veronica eased sideways. They were playing a game to see who would be the first to have her. Well, she wasn't going to be “had” by anyone.
“Please sit.” Remy respectfully motioned to Veronica. “Don't let Alexis scare you.”
Leaving again entered Veronica's mind. If I ran, would they stop me? Alexis seemed to be the more violent of the two. Remy appeared relaxed and comfortable in the mini-altercation. Veronica wondered how easy it was for them to sense her discomfort. She decided to leave.
“Excuse me.” Veronica slid past Remy, intending to walk away.
Remy reached out his arm, blocking her path. “But we haven't talked yet, researcher.” Remy tapped his index finger on the counter.
His comment stopped Veronica in her tracks.
“Researcher?” Alexis visibly cringed at the mention of the word. “Well, then. You can have her.” She snarled her lip in distaste. “I don't like researchers. Their blood tastes funny.”
A cold chill blew up Veronica's spine. Try as he might, Veronica couldn't allow herself to be associated with The Brotherhood. She was not a researcher, her father made sure of that. He kept her away from it, shielding her just enough to tell her what she needed to know. Even if her father wanted her to follow in her mother's footsteps, Veronica wouldn't allow herself to be used in the way that her mother was. The bad memories of The Brotherhood were fresh in the execrable minds of the vampires and Deamhan alike. She couldn't risk allowing Remy to peg her with the title of “researcher”, thus immediately black-listing her in the club--and in the city.
“I'm not a researcher,” she blurted. Not like my father.
“Then who are you?” Remy asked, fixing her with his penetrating stare.
She buried the important pieces from her memory like names, cities, places, and the reason why she came to Dark Sepulcher from her mind.
“What? What is it?” Alexis asked Remy. “What do you see?”
Remy smirked. “Nothing now.”
“That's why she interests you?” Alexis rolled her eyes. “Because she knows how to hide her thoughts unlike the whores you prefer?”
Remy tilted his head to the side, still studying Veronica.
“That should make you want to kill her even more.” Alexis turned her body toward Veronica, gloating over the fear she saw in her eyes.
“Now, now, Alexis,” Remy said softly, “let's give Veronica a chance to explain.”
Veronica again felt the tingling sensation. He even knew her name. This time, it hurt.
Veronica ran toward the front exit. She plowed through the crowd, knocking past people and Deamhan alike. The sensation continued until she passed the security guards outside. Her heart thumped in her chest, and she drank fresh air in huge gulps.
As she reached the corner and turned in the direction of her apartment, she slowed her pace. When she neared the end of the block, she paused and checked the street behind her.
Sloppy. Mother would never have acted like that.
As she continued her walk home, thoughts about her father's warning before she left San Diego repeated over and over in her mind. He'd said she wasn't ready to come back to Minneapolis. Nonsense.
She had to be.
The full moon filled the night sky. Veronica zipped her jacket as the wind picked up. She turned her face to the wind and inhaled, letting the crisp air fill her lungs. Fall was the best time of year in Minnesota. She shoved her hands into her pockets and mounted the steps to home.
1st Place Prize Pack
$50 Amazon Gift Card
1 Large Deamhan Shirt
1 box vampire incense (100 grams)
1 copy of Deamhan (paperback or ebook, winner's choice)
2nd place Prize pack
$20 Amazon Gift Card
1 Large Deamhan Shirt
1 box vampire incense 40 grams
3rd Place Prize Pack
$10 Amazon Gift Card
About the Author:
An avid gamer, writer, and lover of history, Isaiyan Morrison was born and raised in Minnesota.
She moved to San Diego, California while in the Navy. After serving four years of active duty,
she moved to Los Angeles.
After a few years, she moved back to Minnesota where she started to pursue her dream to be an
Besides writing, she also likes to read, surf the internet, watch movies, and play video games.
She likes warm drinks, pico de gallo, and her love for cilantro is legendary.
At one point she was sponsored to participate in video game tournaments. During that time she
traveled to Canada, Nevada, New York, Pennsylvania, Florida, Iowa, Oklahoma, and Caribbean.
Her novel Deamhan, the first book in the Deamhan series, was accepted for publication by
Rainstorm Press for release in mid 2013. She’s currently in talks to have the second
book Sensual Appetite published by the same company.
Other novels the author has completed are The Carriers (Sphere Episode One,) The Bond
(Sphere, Episode Two,) and Old Farmer’s Road to name a few.
She’s currently writing the third Deamhan book titled, Revelation, and Maris. The Brotherhood
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/isaiyanmorrison