And until six months ago, he was fine with that description. But when the vampire assassin spots a curvaceous woman, a human no less, who would come to fill his thoughts, he would gladly shake his persona for a moment in time with her. Instead, he kept his distance, watching out for her and learning more about her every time their paths crossed. But he had yet to speak to her. When a turn of events thrusts her into his solitary life, he must decide whether to complete his assignment, or protect her.
Olivia Sabin had dedicated her life to her work; finding a cure for cancer. She had hidden behind the mask of a scientist who cares little about anything beyond her laboratory, and for a long while she believed it herself. But when a mysterious man came to frequent the diner she visited nightly, her awareness of him devastated her concentration, and she came to look forward to the glimpses of him, however brief.
When she stumbles upon a horrific experiment at work, she knows he’s the only one she can turn to. She’s willing to sacrifice everything in order to protect him and others of his kind from the same fate. But first, she needs to find a way to get him to hear her explanation.
In his over two hundred year existence, he’d never been attracted to a human. Blood was the one reason that he interacted with humans, and even that could be taken from a donor without him having him drink from the source. But as he tried to pass off a reason he reacted to her in such an elemental way, he continued to follow her, finding himself outside the door that read Blue Plate Diner. Obscured by the door, his eyes tracked movement as the waitress greeted her as if they were old friends. For a reason he couldn’t fathom, he felt a surge of jealousy. He was still a stranger to this captivating human, and she intrigued him. Without quite knowing why he had followed her, he opened the door and walked into the chrome and tiled cafe, taking the time to pull up the hood of his sweatshirt. He scanned the place and settled for a booth at the back of the restaurant, where he could watch her without being detected.
By the time he’d sat down and scanned for any possible dangers, she had pulled out a laptop along with a sheaf of papers filled with formulas he couldn’t decipher. Between typing and writing in the margins of the already filled pages, the concentration on her work was total.
He found himself mesmerized by the play of emotions on her face as she worked. A smile for when she figured out a problem, or a frown when something didn’t quite fit, and everything in between. He couldn’t take his eyes off of her. When she bit her lip in concentration, it took all of his control to keep his distance from her. He found that he had to grip the table to keep himself still, when all he wanted to do was devour her.
The spell was broken when the waitress had placed a club sandwich with a side of fries on the free space next to her elbow. He forced himself to relax, but kept his eyes on her when she reached for the sandwich absently and ate without really paying attention to anything else but the work in front of her.
After several hours, her hand covered a small yawn. She glanced at her watch, and he felt the side of his mouth tilt as she rolled her eyes. Thanking the waitress, she reached for two tens in her pocket and dropped them on the table before she packed up and left.
From that night on, he made a point to arrive at the diner minutes after she was seated, and spent hours scanning her face as he watched her work. And every night, he slid into the shadows as she walked home to her small cottage, with its bright white siding with cornflower blue shutters that matched her perfectly. Each night, he waited until she was safely inside with the door locked, before he made his way back to his home on the mountain. His attraction also came with a somewhat unwanted reaction. Protectiveness. He estimated her height at under five and a half feet tall, and although she walked everywhere in their relatively safe little town—to her job at Standard Biotech and her home, several blocks from the diner—he had to tamp down his need to protect her. From what, he couldn’t explain, even to himself.
She was oblivious of him, so eventually he stopped covering his face as he entered the diner. He kept telling himself that it was enough, being with her as she sat a short distance away. But she continued to be blissfully unaware of his presence, and something deep inside him wanted answers to his questions. And those questions had nothing to do with her blood.
The obsession had grown steadily, and although he couldn’t explain it, he knew he couldn’t give her up.
Valerie writes paranormal and contemporary romances with strong alpha males and brilliant, beautiful heroines. She lives in Denver, Colorado with her wonderfully supportive husband and their funny and wise black lab. She's addicted to coffee, crime shows, and reading and writing character driven romances.