The pub buzzed with life. This was where Nevada wanted to be. Taking over a vacated seat at the bar, she waited for the bartender to notice her. In awe of just how many bottles were stacked on the wall, she couldn’t help but wonder how they got to the topmost bottles. There was so much about vampires she didn’t know, like did they really float, or was that a myth? Did they need to drink blood all the time or once in a while?
“What will it be, miss?” Startled, she looked up to find the kind-faced bartender looking her over. She blushed at his scrutiny.
“I’ll try the Silver Kiss, please.”
He grinned. “One Silver Kiss coming up for the beautiful lady. The perfect drink to kick off the New Year.”
“Thank you, and Happy New Year.”
“No thanks required.” He turned and left. She slid around to look over the pub. There were people playing pool, darts, standing around tables drinking or eating. “Here you go, blood kiss. One Silver Kiss with an extra bit of sparkle for New Year.”
“Blood kiss?” She took a sip of the clear drink in a martini glass, and her eyes widened and her taste buds exploded. She could taste sweetness, fruit, and something salty. The afterburn of the alcohol was nice.
“That is what we call normals here in the pub. Blood kiss. It’s an endearment.”
“Oh.” She blushed again.
“How’s your drink?”
“Delicious. This is really, really good.”
“A Silver Stake Pub specialty.”
She slowly savored her drink, and once she was done, she ordered another one, much to the bartender’s amusement. “You can call me Shawn, by the way.”
“And you can put all her drinks on my bill.”
She shivered, and her nipples hardened as the man’s voice cascaded over her body. She turned to the source of the sexy voice, and her jaw dropped.
Standing right next to her was the most gorgeous man she had ever seen. He had to be at least six-five with long ash-blond hair in a braid down his back. His features were chiseled. She could see earrings in a variety of feathers and hoops along his ear. He turned toward her and smiled. His lips were sensuous and full, and he showed off a row of bright white teeth. He reached over and brushed back a strand of her hair.
“You’re welcome. I’m Lucian Sandros.”
He had hooded pale ice-green eyes, and for the first time, she noticed he had a faint tan. How did he tan? He was a vampire, right? He leaned forward, and she inhaled the scent of pine.
“I like the sun just like anyone else.”
His breath tickled her ear, and she shivered. “You read my mind.” She cursed herself for sounding so breathless.
“Are you asking or telling me I read your mind? And yes, if you’re asking.”
She jerked back. “Don’t do that. Get out of my mind.”
“Nevada. Interesting name.”
“I said get out of my mind.”
“Sorry, I just wanted to know your name.”
“You could have asked.”
She turned back toward the bar, picked up her drink, and took a sip. He leaned forward, brushing her hair over her shoulder.
He whispered in her ear again. “Would you have told me if I asked?”
She didn’t turn toward him, trying to ignore how his nearness was making her crazy; her stomach clenched and her panties were soaked and her pussy contracted, wanting to be filled. Her body had never acted this way.
“Where is your boyfriend this fine evening? Why would he let a beauty like you out on your own?”
“I don’t need a man to escort me anywhere.”
“I never said that.”
“You don’t have to say it.”
“And why don’t I have to say that?” She turned her head to find him only a breath away from her face. She jerked her head back, but he leaned forward and kissed her. Pulling back, he grinned. “Asshole.”
“Thank you.”Luc turned his head toward the bar. “Another beer, Shawn.”
“You got it, Luc.”
“So, what brings a beauty like you here alone on Friday night?” He still hadn’t answered her question about why she didn’t need to say she was single.
She let it pass, concentrating on this new conversation they had started. “Can’t you guess?”
“You want excitement and sexiness, and I can give you all of those things.”
“I doubt it.”
“I promise I can give you exactly what you need.”
“Look, Luc or whatever your name is, I’m fine. I’m enjoying my time here. I don’t need you trying to pick me up.”
“Luc, back off, man. She doesn’t want you.” The bartender intervened on her behalf, and she smiled softly in appreciation.
“See, Shawn agrees with me.”
Nevada tilted her head in the bartender’s direction.
“You just don’t know you want me.”
“I know I don’t.”
“Feisty. I like you. Most normals we get in here just gawk and act all wide-eyed. We need more like you.”
“You can tell I’m a normal?”
“Does it show?” Nevada tucked her hair behind her ear in a gesture of nervousness.
“Relax, mavro mou roda
. No harm will come to you. We don’t harm normals here, right, guys?”
There was an uproarious “Yeah!” that went throughout the pub. She blushed and ducked her head in embarrassment.
“See, we like normals, especially beauties like you. Now are you going to dance with me, or should I wait until you finish your drink?”
“I don’t dance,” she lied.
“You don’t dance. Well then, I’ll be glad to teach you. Come on. Finish your drink, and let’s dance.”
Nevada took her sweet time finishing her drink and was about to order another one when Lucian grabbed her hand and pulled her off the stool. She landed against his chest.
“Omph.” She moved back, but he wouldn’t let go of her hand. “Let go.”
He tugged her forward. “Uh-uh, I’m not letting you go, not until I teach you how to dance.”
“You’re going to teach me how to dance, are you?”
“Yup.” He guided her toward the dance floor, and she followed reluctantly.