by Kate Hill
#vampires, #darkfantasy, #urbanfantasy #shapeshifters #magic
Two magical outcasts share just about everything, including a body. Now they intend to share the witch Daisy Fay.
Martin: I was an outcast. Humiliated and abused, I ran away to carve out a life apart from the Specter family business. Convinced the family magic would never work for me, I was taken by surprise when I met him.
Manticore: Shunned by other manifestations, I lived alone and nameless. Then I found Martin. He gave me a name and his body. Now, we exist as one. We never expected to find a woman who’ll love us, but Daisy Fay is full of surprises. We’ve walked through demonic fire to protect her, and we will have her as our mate.
Daisy Fay: Martin is the sweetest guy I know. Manticore is an enticing beast. I never dreamed they shared a body. It’s a good thing I love them both. We’re in constant danger, though, because their father wants to kill them. They want to keep me safe, but sitting in the sidelines isn’t my style, and they’d better get used to it.
On the way to the library, I try to calm myself. Glancing at my shaking hands, I curse softly. I’m not emotional because of the fight, but from seeing Manticore again. The way he looks at me and the way I feel about him is a dangerous combination.
I sit at the table Martin and I had been sharing and call him. I need to know that he’s all right. It’s a dangerous city, and even though he took the secret passage, other demons might be lurking in the area, waiting for an easy target.
Moments later, I receive a text back.
I’m okay. Worried about you, though. Glad Manticore showed up when he did. Talk to you later.
My brow furrows. That was short and to the point. Martin is usually a bit warmer in his texts, but he’s probably still a little shaken up, too.
“Ah, Daisy Fay.” Manticore steps into the library and my jaw drops. He’s discarded his bloody jacket, shirt, and tie. Half-naked, he strides toward me. His trousers are belted at his narrow waist. He’s not tall or big, but he has a wiry strength that reminds me of a wild animal, like a hungry cheetah on the prowl. The black, white, and gray makeup still covers his face, but the sprays of blood are gone. Strange. Does he carry a touch-up kit with him? Why not? After all, his family made its fortune selling beauty products, and they still make a profit even since the demon occupation.
He closes the door behind him and locks it. Then he turns, one long, sleekly-muscled arm still stretched in the direction of the door and an almost playful smile on his lips. “Alone at last.”
I’m torn between anticipation and annoyance. “What exactly do you think is going to happen, Manticore?”
He strolls up to me, his eyes wide with mock innocence. “What do you mean?”
“Why did you lock the door?” I back away and he rapidly closes the distance between us.
“I thought we could use some privacy.”
I draw a surprised breath when my back hits the wall. He plants a hand on either side of my head, trapping me between his well-defined arms. Still smiling a bit, he dips his mouth toward mine.
Changeling Press: https://www.changelingpress.com/manticore-confessions-3-b-3447
Kate Hill is a vegetarian New Englander who loves writing romantic fantasies. When she’s not working on her books, Kate enjoys reading, working out, watching horror movies, and researching vampires and Viking history. She runs the Compelling Beasts Blog that is dedicated to antagonists, antiheroes, and paranormal creatures. Kate also writes as Saloni Quinby.
Visit her online at https://www.kate-hill.com. Join her newsletter at https://kate-hill.com/index.php/newsletter.