by Linda J. Parisi
(Blood Rogue, #2)
Publication date: July 13th 2021
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance
There is the blood and can only ever be the blood. So how can love survive in a world of pain?
As a Roman gladiator and slave, vampire Hunter Pierce only knew death and destruction. Never love.
Dr. Victoria Roberts only knew love and safety, never fear or death, until the day her life was shattered with a home invasion that destroyed her world.
Now Hunter and Tori’s worlds collide, with Blood Rogues continuing to menace both human and vampire alike.
Tori is in danger and it’s all Hunter’s fault. To keep watch of the clever doctor, the vampire enlists
her to aid in finding a cure for Nirvana, the dangerous poison rogue vampires are using to kill.
When Tori is kidnapped, Hunter faces his corrupt former master and a race against the clock to save his own life.
But can a vampire who has only watched out for himself risk his life, and his immortality, for the love of a human?
Can a woman who has lost everything rebuild her shattered heart with a man who thinks he hasn’t got one?
Only love, trust, and an Honorable Rogue can save them all.
Tall, with auburn hair swept up into a Grecian knot, she wore the same dress as the other women who stood by Stacy as she married Charles.
Hunter hadn’t really noticed her before, and he wondered why as he found himself walking toward a small set of stairs. Something about this woman tugged at him. She seemed…sad, and he wondered what sadness could intrude on such a festive occasion. “Apologies. The night is beautiful, the silence self-explanatory. May I?”
She turned. Her brown eyes reminded him of amber glass, bright in the moonlight which made him think of being alive and unfettered. Yet her gaze held the vulnerability of a doe and the threads of a pain he could only guess at. “Free country.” She turned back to the skyline. “Friend of the groom?”
“Yes. For quite some time.” Hunter bowed his head. “Hunter Pierce at your service.”
The line of her mouth softened from straight to curved. “Chaz said those very words the first time we met,” she murmured. “I’m Tori. Tori Roberts. Friend of the bride.”
“I gathered by your dress although I was a little late for the ceremony,” he remarked.
“We’re sisters. I couldn’t want anything more than for Stacy to be as happy as she is right now.”
Hunter frowned. “Stacy didn’t mention any siblings.”
Tori laughed softly and Hunter enjoyed the sound. “Sorry. Not by blood. We’re sorority sisters. Best friends.”
“Ahh. Would you like to sit? He indicated a stone bench nearby.
She faltered and Hunter found her hesitation unsettling. But then she agreed which he found to be even more unsettling. “Not too long otherwise they’ll send out a search party.” She placed her pocketbook on the bench. “Have you known Chaz long?”
He allowed a slight smile. “Long enough.”
She glanced toward the ballroom windows then back at him and she rose slowly. “If you’ll excuse me? As much as I would love to continue this conversation, I really need to get back.”
Hunter stood also. He wondered how someone so astute could be so sad inside. So he asked, “A question before you go?” She lifted her chin, almost a dare to continue. “Why are you so sad?”
She reached for the small pocketbook sitting on the bench. The movement caused her shoulder to hide part of her face. Hunter knew all about hiding.
“How do you know I’m sad?”
“Part of my business is reading people. Can you tell me a few moments ago you weren’t?”
She stepped back trying to put distance between them. “I’m not sure that’s any of your business.”
“Agreed.” Hunter approached her as he would a doe trying to suppress the predator inside. “You wear a mask and if I may be so bold, I think your friends would prefer you didn’t.”
“Really.” Her brows drew together. “Was this part of your ‘service’?”
“Apologies,” he said, inclining his head. “I’ve found most people prefer the truth—eventually.”
She bit her lip, paused, and then blurted, “What’s your truth?”
Hunter found he had to hold back a bitter guffaw. “I’m a vampire.”
“Wow.” Her mouth opened, no sound came out, and then laughter burst from her lips. “That is the first time anyone has ever used being a vampire as a pick-up line on me. Incredibly inventive.”
She clapped her hands together lightly. Whatever had possessed him to tell her his most guarded secret? Nonplussed, he answered, “You asked for the truth. I gave it.”
“Right,” she answered. “I wonder what Chaz would say if he knew.” She clapped again but the sound faded as he drew even closer.
For the first time in a very long time, Hunter found himself completely engaged by a woman. He stepped forward and this time, she didn’t step back. He lifted his arms to circle her body and said, “He would tell you I have no business thinking what I’m thinking.”
She lifted trembling fingers and tucked an errant strand of hair behind her ear yet her lips lifted with an almost roguish smile. “Would he now?”
As a major in biochemistry with a minor in English literature, Linda has always tried to mesh her love of science with her love of the written word. A clinical research scientist by day and NJRW Golden Leaf award winning author by night, she creates unforgettable characters and puts them in untenable situations, much to their dismay. Choices always matter and love conquers all, so a happy-ever-after is a must. Linda is the current Treasurer of Liberty States Fiction Writers. She has served on the boards of other writing organizations, and loves to teach the craft of writing at worshops and conferences. She lives in New Jersey with her husband John, son Chris, daughter-in-law Sara, and Audi, a Cocker Spaniel mix who had her at woof!
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