Princesses of the Night
Tanya is a hardworking college student but her whole world is turned upside down when she meets a mysterious man on Halloween. All that she thought was fiction is now her reality. A night life filled with fangs and blood—and an evil vampire that wants her dead.
She and her friends are the chosen ones, destined long ago, to save this world from destruction. That’s not easy when your enemy is your sire’s son.
It was the end of a long workday when Tanya stepped out of the bookstore, keys in hand, and breathed deeply of the brisk night air. Fall was her favorite time of year, the air was crisp and the leaves on the trees turned fantastic shades of red, orange, and yellow.
A big, goofy smile formed on her face as visions of the new guy in the apartment complex filled her mind. Much to her delight, he moved into the apartment directly below hers. Late at night when all was quiet, she could hear him playing his guitar. That man is a living, breathing version of Tanya’s dream-guy. I, definitely need to find the courage to run downstairs and speak to that man.
Flipping through the keys on her keyring, she found the one that would fit the lock to the bookstore. Just as she was about to stick the key into the lock, a blood curdling scream pierced through the wooden door. “What on earth?” Whipping her head around, Tanya’s eyes scanned the parking lot before her, surveying her surroundings. There was nothing out of place, and no one was lurking in the shadows.
Stuffing the keys into her front pocket, she shoved open the door, not caring that the heavy wood banged against the interior wall. She’d be surprised if there wasn’t a dent in the sheetrock from the force, but that would be something to worry about at a later date.
Another scream had her running toward the back of the building, in the direction of the managers’ offices. The smart thing to do would be to call 911 and get to safety, but she couldn’t. Someone was in her store and needed immediate help. Regardless of the danger she was putting herself in, she had to come to the rescue of this poor woman.
Racing past bookshelf after bookshelf, Tanya’s toe hit a metal rack, knocking it over and spilling magazines all over the floor. The screaming continued, causing her heart to pound painfully in her chest.
With the employee entrance in view, she picked up speed. Some innocent woman was in danger, and she had to know who the woman was.
Pushing open the swinging doors, Tanya came to a stop at the first office door. Grabbing the doorknob, she turned it slowly, opening the door as quietly as possible. Nothing. The office was just the way she’d left it.
Inching along the wall, she stopped at the second door on the left side of the hallway. It was as though electricity was flowing through the air, causing the hairs on the back of her neck to stand on end. The danger was behind this door. She could feel it like a snake coiling around her body threatening to choke the life out of her.
Reaching out to grip the doorknob, she took a deep breath and proceeded to open the door as slowly as humanly possible. With no windows inside the office, the room was pitch black, and it took a moment for her eyes to adjust to the darkness.
Slowly but surely, shapes and shadows came into focus. Squinting, she made out two figures. It appeared to be a tall, slender woman pressed against a rather bulky man. Sadly, with it being this dark, she couldn’t see their faces.
The light switch was to her right. Moving her arm, she flipped the switch up with her elbow. There was a click as the lever tapped against the plate, but nothing happened. He must have cut the power to the store.
He chuckled. “You’ve already lost.”
It was so dark, she could barely see. Remembering there was a lamp in the corner with a clap-on, clap-off setting, she clapped her hands. Nothing. Oh, right. No power. Using the flashlight app on her phone, she shined it toward them but it wasn’t enough. He pulled the woman to the other side of the room, into the shadow of a large filling cabinet.
Wrapping a muscular arm around the woman’s waist to hold her in place, he brought the knife he was holding in his other hand to the base of her throat. Dear Lord, what was going on in this store? Who was this man, and who in the world was this poor, defenseless woman?
Needing to know her identity, Tanya took a couple of steps in their direction. The woman’s short, dark-brown curls moved where her captor’s breath was blowing next to her ear. She shined her light at the frightened young woman. Big, bright-blue eyes were staring back at Tanya, pleadingly.
Taking another small step forward, Tanya gasped. “Danny, is that you?” Dannika Wile, Tanya’s cousin and best friend, was the one in danger, and there was no way Tanya could save her from this crazed maniac.
At Tanya’s advance, the intruder pressed the knife into her cousin’s throat a little more, and a droplet of blood formed beneath the blade. As if smelling the tinny odor, he smiled at Tanya in a manner that reminded her of a lunatic.
Tanya was struggling to breathe as she whispered, “Oh jeez, mister.” She wanted to advance and help her cousin, but she knew it would do more damage than good so she stayed put. “Look, just let her go. I’ll give you whatever you want, just let her go.”
The shadows concealed him well enough she couldn’t see his expression, but his laugh said it all. The fear coursing through Tanya’s body amused him.
Surely this was a nightmare and she’d awaken any moment. At a last attempt to save Dannika, she said, “Hey, I have access to the safe. I mean it, whatever you want, it’s yours.”
“You have nothing that interests me, little girl.” In one swift movement, he sliced through Dannika’s neck.
Dannika’s eyes meet Tanya’s briefly, and the terror there was enough to make Tanya scream. A split second later, Dannika’s body fell limp. “No,” Tanya screamed at the man standing before her.
“You’re next,” he growled. Cackling, he brought the knife up to his mouth and licked the blade clean.