The Emerald Lily (Vampire Blood)(7)

By: Juliette Cross

Her wet nurse had said she’d never fed properly from her. When the nurse would offer her arm or neck, she would turn her face away, refusing to puncture with her infant fangs. It was her nurse who first drained her own blood into a cup so that the toddler princess could get the nutrition she needed. Ever since then, she’d fed the same way.

She’d never allowed her animal nature to come too close to the surface. But now, her primal urges took hold without her consent. The sensation new and wonderful and profoundly right.

Brushing her nose along his warm skin, she inhaled deep. The earthy scent of mulled spice and wood smoke and leather filled her nostrils. She had to open her mouth to keep her fangs from embedding into her own tongue. A slight sound of pleasure escaped as she latched her lips against his skin and slid her sharp canines into his skin, the sensation foreign but dizzyingly euphoric. His warm lifeblood spilled into her mouth, wetting her tongue and dry throat, sliding to all the parts of her that thirsted, that yearned, that longed for succor. Pleasure, pure and strong, shot through her body.

His muscles bunched beneath her suctioning mouth. She clenched her nails to keep him still, a predatory sense spiking in her body, urging her to keep hold of her prey. It frightened her—and aroused her. His arm that was looped around her waist tightened as he dropped his forehead to her shoulder, cursing with sudden sharpness. His masculine groan urged her on. She moaned, sucking him deep.

He murmured so low she might not have heard, “Fuck, that feels like heaven.”

His blood replenished her body lightning fast, amplifying her senses to brilliant vibrancy. The potency she experienced when her eyes shot awake was nothing like this. His blood was like a honey of the gods, sweeping her into a place of ecstasy. The heat of him—body and blood—wrapped her in a sensual embrace, making her want even more. The sudden thought of what he’d feel like on top of her, inside her, snapped her back to the here and now.

She broke her bite, crimson blood trailing down his forearm, a few drops falling into her lap. She quickly licked his wound; the healing component in her saliva would seal it.

He wrenched his arm away with a firm tug. She let go. He lurched to his feet, facing away from her while swiftly rolling down his sleeve and buttoning the cuff.

“I’m sorry,” she whispered. “Did I take too much? Did I hurt you?”

He scoffed, still facing away. “No, Princess. You didn’t hurt me.” With a fierce glance over his shoulder, his gaze roved her face, her throat, and fixed on her mouth. “Get some rest. We leave soon enough.”

He left, heading into the night. She stared, wondering if he sensed her heightened desire during the act of drinking from him. Once more, she thought this sudden change in her should provoke some sense of unease or fear. It didn’t. Rather, a swelling of confidence poured through her being. A sense of rightness she couldn’t explain, even to herself.

Soon, the hypnotic pull of satiation and the heat of the fire on her skin made her drowsy. She tried to fight it, staring into the crackling flames, but eventually lay on her side, pillowing her hands beneath her cheek.

So that was what it was like. Now she knew, understood on a primitive level why so many vampires lost their humanity and gave into the beast to bleed a host dry. Not that she believed she could ever do such a thing, but someone without conscience and with less willpower might easily be lured to commit such a crime. To experience such pleasure.

She touched her fingertips to her lips, relishing the strength of her body from his virile blood. What a wonder. Was it the fact she extracted the blood directly from the source? Or was it him? The answer swirled and mixed with the heady concoction pouring power into every artery of her body. Her empathic sense felt the trembling residue of desire flowing in the blood that was in his veins moments before. She wasn’t sure where this path would lead, taking her back to the Black Lily. But she knew for certain her fate was now inextricably bound to the vampire named Mikhail.

Chapter Three

It had been over two hours since the princess had bitten him and drank his blood. He’d relieved Gavril and taken watch, needing the chill night air to cool him off. It had done nothing to extinguish the fever she’d ignited when her elixir poured into his veins. A punch of erotic adrenaline took the breath right out of him then shot straight to his cock. It had taken every ounce of willpower to hold still and not ravage her on the cold cave floor.

He had his answer about her surviving the sleep with her mind intact. Not a touch or sign of insanity. Quite the opposite. She appeared as lucid as if she’d been napping for an afternoon. Amazing that such a woman should endure a deep, dark sleep, and to awaken with a vibrant spark of fire in her eyes. This was not the norm for those so cursed. Of course, she was a royal. A sinfully sensual royal princess.