Seventy-two years ago Santos Diaz's fianc�e died two weeks before their wedding -- two weeks before he could turn her into a vampire like him. Now, on the Day of the Dead, Santos has a plan to bring her back. He'll sacrifice his honor to Baron Samedi, the voudou guardian of the land of the dead, in exchange for his love's return.
Yelina heads for the cemetery to honor her father's memory and finds herself in a passionate clinch with her handsome boss, Santos, with whom she's been in love for two years. She's never experienced passion like this before, but when a few vampires threaten to turn the day of the dead into the last day of her life and it looks like Santos himself might be a vampire too -- one who still carries a torch for a dead woman --she thinks her happy ending may vanish into the darkness of the grave.
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November 13, 2009
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Excerpt from Day of the Dead by December Quinn
Yelina stood up, her knees aching from kneeling for so long. She'd skipped coming to her father's grave for the last two years on All Soul's Day, but this year something compelled her to come, to light the candles and say a prayer.
Well, it wasn't "something" that compelled her. It was a dream. The most bizarre, erotic and insane dream she'd ever had. She couldn't remember it well, but there had been a strange man with the face of a skeleton, and a tomb, and...
And there had been Santos Diaz. Her boss. Her boss and the man she'd been crazy in love with for two years, since the day she met him.
Not that she had the proverbial snowball's chance of actually getting close to him, despite the time they spent just talking to each other. Women fell at his feet every day, the putas, and he ignored them all, sailing past the admiring glances like the god Yelina sometimes fancifully imagined he was. If those women, some of the most beautiful women in Miami, had no chance, how in the world would Santos notice a nobody accountant like Yelina?
Oh he knew who she was, of course. They spent too much time together in the office for him not to. He always had a greeting or kind word for her, a quick smile to break her heart and make her think his affection was more than the casual friendship their relationship demanded. Once, when she'd discovered a mistake in the books that would have cost them a couple of thousand dollars, he'd even said, "Que bueno, Yelenita."
Yelenita. Just the memory of the word on his lips could make her wet. As it was doing now.
Which was highly inappropriate, considering where she was, so with one last glance, she walked away from her father's grave.
In the distance she saw the glow of more candles. She wasn't the only one honoring her dead tonight. Celebrating life. So...would it be such an awful thing to head home and spend the rest of the night with her vibrator and Santos saying "Yelenita" in her head? With imagining his dark eyes staring into hers, his broad, strong chest looming over her in the darkness, his soft lips tasting every inch of her body?
No. It would not be an awful thing, at all. In fact, if she kept thinking about it, it would become inevitable.
Her father was buried in the old part of the cemetery, back where the iron cross still hung over the gates and the ground was sometimes red from Santeria rituals. She hadn't felt alone before, but for some reason as she stood, a shiver ran through her. She folded her arms over her chest and turned to head back, then stopped when something white glimmered in the corner of her eye.
A tomb. Just like the one she saw in her dream.
If this was a movie, she would have gone right over to it, she knew. People in movies were always ready to believe whatever crazy omens they saw and never worried about the fact that the tomb was set back under trees and even the permanently light Miami sky didn't eliminate the deep shadows around it. Movie people never worried that a tomb was, after all, just a few walls separating them from a dead body. Most of all, movie people knew they were following a script and that if the character died, the actual actress did not.
Yelina wasn't in a movie, despite the crazy philosophical theories she'd had in common with all stoned college students a few years ago.
So why were her feet still carrying her over to the tomb, as if someone else had taken control of her body?