Bloodlines merge, passions surge.
Magical Menages, Book 2
One riveting glance from the handsome stranger stalking her in the supermarket shakes Akila Massri down to her soul. And when Jacob Baum hands her an engraved invitation to visit his billionaire employer's retreat, curiosity--and the need to pay off her student loans--overcomes the instinct to refuse.
Once on Valarian Kaspan's private tropical island, her dark and deadly host confronts her with several incredible facts. Vampires exist. Her Egyptian ancestry traces back to the sun god, Ra. And her bloodline is critical to the future of mankind.
From his thrall's heated reaction to the supple-limbed Akila, Valarian is certain she is destined to mingle his Genghis Kahn bloodline with that of Ra. As a vampire, Valarian is sterile; it is through Jacob that a prophesied savior of mankind will be born.
As Akila tries to wrap her mind around all this, she finds herself caught up in a whirlwind of erotic passion for two, very complicated men. When they all come together, something powerful unfolds within her. Something that makes her the target of evil vampires who plan to use her--and her unborn--to erase humans' very existence from the earth...
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March 01, 2011
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Excerpt from Vampires' Consort by Bonnie Dee
Akila braced herself as if they were coming in for a crash landing. Here we go. What in the hell have I gotten myself into?
The plane touched down, light as a feather, and rolled to a stop.
Jacob rose and ushered her from her seat. "This way, Miss Massri."
They descended the steps of the plane and Akila stood for a moment, absorbing the tropical sun's heat and the glorious view that lay before her.
Fantasy Island, indeed. The place was pure paradise. From the airstrip she could see bleached sand and gently breaking surf on one side, emerald green foliage laced with showy tropical blooms on the other.
Jacob carried her bags to a golf cart. They climbed inside and zipped along a path through the trees. The track climbed upward in the cool shade and then broke through into a sunny glade. Gracing the crest of the hill was a huge house with white walls that shone in the sun. A red, clay-tiled roof made a pretty contrast to the harsh white.
Akila thought of every action movie she'd ever seen featuring a drug lord. They always had mansions like this, paid for in blood. For all she knew, Kaspan dabbled in the drug trade too, but he had enough legitimate businesses it hardly seemed necessary. Besides, criminals didn't usually fund schools, hospitals, orphanages and programs to build roads in third world countries--all philanthropies Kaspan was involved in.
"Home, sweet home, eh?" She glanced at Jacob's chiseled profile and wondered what he was all about. She couldn't imagine such a somber man ever having been a playful child. Where had he come from and how had he ended up as the lackey of one of the most powerful men in the world?
She was tired of wondering about things. Patience wasn't her strong suit and she'd been pondering a million questions ever since that day Baum had handed her the invitation. Kaspan had allowed her little time to consider the offer. The airline tickets had been for the following week, which was just as well or she might have talked herself out of this crazy adventure.
Now here she was, getting out of the golf cart and facing a glossy red door behind a decorative wrought-iron grille. Tendrils of vines grew in a trellis arching over the walkway and plants erupted in lush profusion from beds on either side. The path to the front door meandered invitingly down the tunnel of green. The house was not at all the Gothic mausoleum she'd half expected an eccentric recluse to live in. Akila's fears were somewhat alleviated by the welcoming atmosphere.
"What a lovely place to live."
Jacob looked around as though seeing it with fresh eyes. "It is."
He held the door for her and she walked from the humid heat into the refreshing coolness of the foyer. A fan swept lazily high overhead in the vaulted ceiling and sunlight from a window illuminated the open space. A plush carpet in deep reds and earth tones covered most of the tiled floor. Potted trees and plants brought the outdoors inside.
Akila barely had time to glance at the artwork on the walls or the exotic artifacts scattered here and there before Jacob guided her down a corridor.
"I will take you to your room first so you may refresh yourself before meeting Mr. Kaspan."
She decided his courtly, almost old-fashioned manner of speech may have been from learning English as a second language. "Are you from Germany? I keep catching a trace of an accent."
"Yes," he said. "But I've lived many places in the world since then."
"Mm. I did the European backpacking thing one summer when I was in college, but money's always been too tight for me to travel much."
This tropical retreat was a dream come true, especially with icy gray slush still piled alongside the streets back home. Whatever Kaspan wanted, she would enjoy her time here in this paradise for as long as it lasted.
Jacob opened a door and Akila stepped into a room that reminded her of the iridescent inside of an oyster shell. The floor underfoot was covered with dove gray carpet, but the walls were swathed in fabric, the colors of which seemed to shimmer and change as she looked at them. Cool blue, lilac, rose and flashes of green mingled with gray and white. The same colors were picked out in abstract designs on the comforter. Embedded in one of the walls was a saltwater tank with fish darting among colorful corals. Entering the room was like stepping into an undersea world.
"This is beautiful," she murmured, turning in a slow circle to take it all in while Jacob set her suitcase on the bed.
"I'm glad you like it." Something about the pleased way he accepted her compliment made her look at him.
"Did you design this?"
He shrugged. "Master Kaspan gives me free rein on decorating decisions. It's my hobby, I suppose you could say."
Akila studied him. She'd just learned two extremely interesting things. Jacob possessed an artistic streak at odds with his rigid manner and he had slipped and referred to Kaspan not as his boss, but as "master".
"The bathroom is there." He indicated a door. "I'll give you an hour to rest and then take you to see Mr. Kaspan."
She'd half hoped the man would be waiting at the door so she could get this meeting over with. She should've guessed he'd summon her to his throne room.
Jacob turned to leave, then paused and looked back at her. The blue in the room enhanced the vibrant hue of his eyes and Akila saw uncertainty there for the first time.
"I would like to say I'm glad you accepted Mr. Kaspan's invitation to come here. Even if you don't choose to go through with his proposal, it was a pleasure meeting you." Abruptly he lifted her hand and kissed the back of it; then he was out the door before she could say a word.
Akila stared at her hand, feeling the warm, moist pressure of his lips. Her heart pounded as if he'd dipped her into a backbend and kissed the hell out of her. What did he mean by "go through with his proposal"? Now she was more curious than ever about this mystery. God, she couldn't wait another hour to find out.
But, by the time she'd hung a few clothes in the wardrobe, washed her face, fluffed her short hair, applied a little eyeliner, watched the mesmerizing fish and examined the decorative artifacts throughout the room, the hour was over and Jacob was knocking on her door.
"What's he like?" she couldn't help asking, even though she'd know for herself in another minute.
Jacob paused for only a second before answering. "Charismatic. Valarian Kaspan leaves his mark." A small smile curved his lips as though at some inside joke.
"I feel like I'm about to meet Oz," Akila said as they approached an open archway. Through it she could see a wall of glass and a stunning view of the ocean.
For once, Jacob understood her reference. "Except Mr. Kaspan is no fraud. He truly is great and powerful." His tone was almost reverent, a far cry from the frustration she'd sensed earlier. Apparently he was very conflicted about his feelings for his "master".
Then there was no more time for talking as Jacob ushered her into the large, airy room and she beheld her host. Her first impression was that, despite the generous size of the living room, the dark-haired man seemed to fill it. He sucked up all the oxygen and the light. His eyes, trained on her, were midnight black like his hair and his skin was olive-tone. He was not overly tall, yet seemed enormous and quite overpowering as he strode--no, glided--across the floor toward her.
"Ms. Massri, I'm so pleased you accepted my invitation."