Hello, everyone! Thank you, Nell, for letting me steal a spot on your blog today. Yesterday, Bring Him Back, Jack was released. I wrote it to celebrate Different Colored Eyes Day, so naturally, there is a character with heterochromia, and it’s significant to the story, but where do you all stand on vampires?
I had this idea one day. It was back in the winter, and I was in the sauna. I tend to stay away from the sauna in warmer weather, so I know it was winter LOL. I had a pen a notebook as I often do when I’m in the sauna. Ideas tend to come when I’m in the shower, out walking, or in the sauna. The only place I have something to write on is in the sauna.
Anyway, I had this idea of a world where vampires existed and were treated as second-class citizens, or you know, as slaves. To control them, their human owners attach a device to their chests ready to shoot a stake through their hearts at a push of a button.
I skipped just about everything you know about vampires – they’re not sensitive to sunlight, they don’t dislike garlic, they don’t sleep in coffins, they’re visible in mirrors, they can’t control you with their minds, they don’t need an invitation or enter a home, and they don’t sparkle. But I kept the staking thing.
Malik is a vampire, though his owner calls him Jack, and he has a stake the size of a chopstick attached to his chest. Luckily his stake is made of plastic, so it will only paralyze him, not kill him. When the story begins, he and Ivan have already worked together several times, but now they’re gonna steal a diamond.
To steal a diamond, you need to be stealthy, which is hard when you’re a big vampire not allowed to leave your cage without chains similar to those people wear on death row. Ivan, however, has a plan to get him out of these magically enhanced chains that can’t be removed and to remove the stake 😀
Malik jumped as the front door opened. Before realizing what he was doing, he’d pushed Ivan into a corner and was ready to attack whoever was nearing them.
Raina frowned as she spotted him. “What’s going on? Where’s Ivan?”
“I’m here.” A hand gently touched Malik’s back, and then Ivan pushed past him. He gave Malik a look with raised eyebrows. “While I appreciate you trying to protect me, I’m capable of taking care of myself.”
Malik didn’t believe him. Ivan was small, even by human standards. Most people would be able to overpower him.
Ivan popped his hip. “I don’t like the look I’m seeing, Malik.”
Ivan huffed and stepped back so his back was against the wall, then he stepped back some more. Malik made a surprised sound as Ivan melted into the wall, disappearing. “Ivan? Ivan!”
He touched the wall where Ivan had disappeared and yelped as a hand caught his.
“Are we done playing?” Raina gave them both an unimpressed look while Malik tried to get his heart to slow down. Ivan had disappeared… into a wall.
“Can you walk in there?” If he could live in the walls, no one would ever be able to find him.
Ivan walked out of the wall, and, for a second, Malik believed it wouldn’t let him go. It was almost as if it stuck to him.
“Along it, yes, but I can’t get past corners or doorways, and I can’t go through walls. If I could, the necklace being in a vault wouldn’t be a problem.”
“I have a saw and some nuts, don’t know if they fit. Maybe we can glue them on if they don’t.”
“Glue?” Ivan waved a hand at her. “We can’t fucking glue his heart together.”
Raina rolled her eyes. “Not his heart, stupid. I meant if the nuts don’t fit, maybe we can glue them on instead of him having sharp metal things coming out of his chest.”
Malik suppressed a shudder. He lived in constant fear of triggering the stake by mistake or that Master would do it deliberately. Having someone try to saw the screws off wasn’t anything he was looking forward to.
Ivan met his gaze. “Ready?”
He shook his head. “Yes.”
Ivan’s laugh had heat climbing his cheeks.
“It’ll be fine.” The wince wasn’t convincing.
“Have you ever… removed stakes before?” Malik did his best to keep his voice from trembling.
“Can’t say I have.”
The chains rattled as Malik raised his hand to his heart. The wall behind Ivan was a soft yellow, and he looked at it for several seconds before nodding. Not having a stake ready to shoot through his chest would make life easier.
“I think the coffee table is sturdy enough.” Raina looked him up and down. “But perhaps not long enough.”
Ivan curled a hand around his arm above the cuff. “You can have your feet on the floor.” He turned to Raina. “A towel or a sheet or something so he doesn’t have to lie on the cold surface.”
She went to the same cabinet where Ivan had gotten him the towel.
“Did you manage to find him some clothes?”
“No.” Raina walked into the living room and spread a sheet over a low table, looking like a matchbox in dark wood. There were several tiny drawers on the sides. What did people put in so many drawers?
“I considered asking Zev, but he’s nosy. A hacksaw I could explain, needing a set of his clothes wouldn’t be as easy.”
Ivan grunted and guided Malik toward the table. “Looks like you’ll be naked.”
Malik stared at him, his pulse thudding in his ears as Raina held up a saw of some kind.
“It was a joke.” Ivan tilted his head as he studied Malik.
“I think he’s more concerned about you putting a saw to his chest than what to wear, to be frank. His sense of fashion isn’t as developed as his survival instinct.”
“It’ll be fine.” Ivan patted his arm. “Probably.”
Once every century, a shadow walker is born. Ivan Charna is that shadow walker, and he and his sister Raina are on the run from wizards who want to sacrifice their blood in some crazy rite. They never stay long in one place, and they do their best not to stand out. When Raina loses a bet, Ivan is forced to work off her debt, and they have to stay put. As long as no wizard figures out what they are, Ivan doesn’t mind all that much since he gets to work with his favorite vampire.
Malik lives in a cell in a basement. He’s never allowed to go anywhere without chains around his wrists and ankles, and there is a stake hovering over his heart at all times. Master can trigger the stake with a push of a button. He doesn’t even have to be in the same room to do it. Malik dreams of a different life, a life with Ivan, but he’s a vampire, and vampires have to do what their masters tell them.
Ivan only has to steal one last diamond, then the debt is paid, and he and Raina can leave town. It should be easy, but when Remington Redwood, the man Raina owes money, insists on having Malik shadow his every step, it complicates things. Malik might dream about making Ivan his, but getting him away from Master alive has to be enough. Ivan knows it’s a stupid risk to take, but if he’s stealing a diamond, what’s to say he can’t steal a giant vampire too?
Paranormal M/M Romance: 32,159 words
According to Holly Day, no day should go by uncelebrated and all of them deserve a story. If she’ll have the time to write them remains to be seen. She lives in rural Sweden with a husband, four children, more pets than most, and wouldn’t last a day without coffee.
Holly gets up at the crack of dawn most days of the week to write gay romance stories. She believes in equality in fiction and in real life. Diversity matters. Representation matters. Visibility matters. We can change the world one story at the time.