Vampire Sire (Vampire for Hire Book 15), page 1
Vampire for Hire #15
(Red Rider: Part 1)
Other Books by J.R. Rain
Bound By Blood
The Body Departed
The Grail Quest
Elvis Has Not Left the Building
The Lost Ark
The Journey (with Piers Anthony)
The Worm Returns (with Piers Anthony)
Lavabull (with Piers Anthony)
Jack and the Giants (with Piers Anthony)
Dolfin Tayle (with Piers Anthony)
Dragon Assassin (with Piers Anthony)
Glimmer (with Eve Paludan)
Lost Eden (with Elizabeth Basque)
Judas Silver (with Elizabeth Basque)
The Vampire Club (with Scott Nicholson)
Cursed (with Scott Nicholson)
The Black Fang Betrayal (with multiple authors)
VAMPIRE FOR HIRE SERIES
Christmas Moon (novella)
SAMANTHA MOON CASE FILES
Moon Bayou (with Rod Kierkegaard)
Blood Moon (with Matthew S. Cox)
SAMANTHA MOON ORIGINS
with Matthew S. Cox
New Moon Rising
VAMPIRE FOR HIRE EXTRAS
Vampire Alley (poem)
Moon Dance (Deluxe Edition)
Moon Extras: Bonus Scenes
VAMPIRE FOR HIRE SHORT STORIES
Dark Side of the Moon
JIM KNIGHTHORSE SERIES
The Mummy Case
Easy Rider (short story)
THE WITCHES SERIES
The Witch and the Gentleman
The Witch and the Englishman
The Witch and the Huntsman (with Rod Kierkegaard)
THE PSI SERIES
with A.K. Alexander
Hear No Evil
See No Evil
Speak No Evil
THE WATSON FILES
with Chanel Smith
Sherlock Holmes and the Missing Shakespeare
Sherlock Holmes and the Lost Da Vinci
Sherlock Holmes and the Werewolf of West End
NICK CAINE SERIES
with Aiden James
Temple of the Jaguar
Treasure of the Deep
Pyramid of the Gods
DEAD DETECTIVE SERIES
with Rod Kierkegaard
The Dead Detective
with Kris Carey
The Accidental Superheroine
My Big Fat Accidental Superheroine Wedding
MADDY WIMSEY SERIES
with Matthew S. Cox
The Devil’s Eye
The Drifting Gloom
WINTER SOLTSICE SERIES
with Matthew S. Cox
ICE WOLF SERIES
with H.P. Mallory
MAJOR QUATERMAIN ADVENTURES
with Randy Keys
ALEXIS SILVER SERIES
with Matthew S. Cox
THE SPINOZA TRILOGY
The Vampire With the Dragon Tattoo
The Vampire Who Played Dead
The Vampire in the Iron Mask
The Vampire on the Train (short story)
THE ALADDIN TRILOGY
with Piers Anthony
Aladdin Sins Bad
Aladdin and the Flying Dutchman
THE WALKING PLAGUE TRILOGY
with Elizabeth Basque
THE SPIDER TRILOGY
with Scott Nicholson and H.T. Night
SHORT STORY SINGLES
The Santa Call
Moonlight & Monsters: Ten Vampire Tales
The Sands of Time
Dark Rain: Stories
Blood Rain: Stories
Black Rain: Stories
Red Rain: Over Forty Bestselling Stories
For Young Readers
The Emerald River
The Angel and the Gift
Spirit Mountain (with Alexandra Swan)
YOUR CHOICE BOOKS
Deep Sea Danger
The Legend of Eagle Eye Mountain
THE ROBOT TWINS
The Mystery of the Walking Statue
The Secret of Stonehead Island (with Randy Keys)
The Secret of the Sphinx
THE DISTANT WORLD TRILOGY
Dare to Enter a Distant World
with Randy Keys
Published by Rain Press
Copyright © 2018 by J.R. Rain
All rights reserved.
Ebook Edition, License Notes
This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.
To Diwamani. He laughs a lot, reads my books, and sports a robust beard. Everything I look for in a friend.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
About the Author
I was folding laundry and watching Judge Judy when I came across Anthony’s latest masterpiece.
At first glance, it looked like any other pair of tighty-whities. Upon second glance, it was obvious there was something v
Nope, just nope.
Nope, nope, nope.
I had fought wolf men, demons and even the devil himself, but none gave me more pause than the rolled-up abomination tucked in the far corner of the laundry basket.
“Lord, give me strength,” I said, wondering idly if my prayers fell on deaf ears. And if they did, well, screw it. I’d answer my own damn prayers.
Truth be told, while loading from washer to dryer, I suspected there had been something amiss: a strange, dark swath seen in my peripheral vision. But I ignored it, hoping like crazy that what I was seeing had been my imagination. That maybe, just maybe, my washer was haunted by a shadow man.
But there was no denying this.
This was epic. This made me question my parenting skills. Obviously, something, somewhere had gone off the rails somewhere. A disconnect. Somehow, the proper use of toilet paper must have fallen on deaf ears... or through the butt cracks.
I sighed, said another prayer... and reached for That Which Should Not Exist.
But it did. And it was in my laundry basket.
“Lord, help me.”
Judge Judy was on point, as usual.
Her ability to size up someone was uncanny. In fact, it was positively supernatural. At present, some punk was trying to convince her that he wasn’t stoned, and that he wasn’t responsible for a loan his friend had given him. Except, of course, he kept laughing, and talked way too much, and his eyelids might have been mostly closed... or made of lead. Judge Judy even cracked a smile, which always makes me smile. In the end, the stoner lost but didn’t seem to care that he lost—in his exit interview, he asked where the closest Taco Bell was.
With Anthony’s underwear now in the “burn” pile, and Judge Judy just signing off, a car pulled up outside my house, a car I had been expecting. Through the mostly closed window shades, I watched the driver try to figure out the angles of the cul-de-sac curb, then watched as she gave up and basically parked with her car’s ass sticking way out into the cul-de-sac. Then I watched her get out, straighten her skirt, brush back her hair, and head up the driveway toward the gate in the chain-link fence. It’s a short gate, but she fumbled with it a few times, pushed it the wrong way, then pulled it the right way, then stepped through. She collected herself again, took a deep breath or two, and headed along the short path to my front door.
I pulled it open before she could knock. “Lauren Skinner?” I asked.
“Boy, we’re good at this game,” I said. “Come in.”
She did and I showed her to my back office with its bookcase and sliding glass door. Little did she know that an angel had once appeared to me here, or that ghosts sometimes materialized in the very same chair where she was now sitting. Or that a vampire was sitting across from her now. Or that, just a few months ago, I’d killed the devil himself. No, I’m not crazy. At least, I don’t think I am.
“Cute office,” she said.
“You work from home?” she asked.
“As a private eye?”
I nodded. “And an international woman of mystery.”
She laughed sharply at that. “I’m not even sure what that means.”
“It’s from a Mike Myers movie.”
“You never saw it.”
“No.” Pause. “I told you who I work for on the phone, correct?”
“A probate attorney.”
She nodded. “Michael Lansky, to be exact.”
Of course, the moment she had mentioned the name over the phone, I had researched the man and confirmed he was legit enough to at least meet with her, his assistant.
“Are you an attorney, too?” I asked.
“Not quite. I am his lead researcher... or fact-gatherer.”
She handed me a card: Alaine Juni, Researcher
“In essence, I unofficially act as the executrix for our distinguished clients.”
“Distinguished in what way? And is that the feminine for executor?”
“Yes. And as far as what way, we will get to that, Ms. Moon, I promise. I’m not trying to be coy, but I do need some information first.”
“Sure,” I said.
I liked her, so I was willing to wait. Interestingly, although I could read her mind, it was... well, impenetrable. In fact, a song was looping in the foreground of her thoughts, a song that I found nearly impossible to push through. I probably could if I tried hard enough, but I didn’t want to or need to. At least not now, not with the promise of more information later. I studied her again and saw her aura plain enough. A sure indicator that she was definitely mortal.
“About six years ago, our client was killed. He left behind a very large estate.”
“And you are telling me this, why?”
“Because you are named in his will.”
I mentally went back in time six years. Not a good time in my life, admittedly. Danny had just left me. I had found myself living in a hotel. Of course, during that time period, I had also flown for the first time, too. What else had happened six years ago? Hmm. I plumbed my memory. I might have superhuman strength and teleport around the world—and even off-world—but I didn’t have a super memory. Let’s see. Well, I had been shot by Rand the vampire hunter six years ago. I had met Kingsley six years ago, too. Oh, and I had met Sherbet six years ago. I drummed my fingers, my nails clacking away, thinking hard. I had been given the first of a series of medallions six years ago. The ruby medallion, in fact. A medallion worn by my attacker. An attacker who had been killed by the same hunter who had shot me. Lots was going on, six years ago.
“Go on,” I said.
“You never formally met my client, but you did, in fact, meet.”
We were talking about my attacker. I was sure of it. So I said nothing, reliving those terrible few minutes on a trail at Hillcrest Park in Fullerton, a few minutes that would forever—and I mean forever—change my life.
I felt my jaw clenching. “Go on.”
“Like I said, you never formally met him, but he knew of you. In fact, he knew a great deal about you.”
My mostly dormant heart kicked in, and I could feel it thudding dully in my chest. Sometimes, I wondered if the whole purpose of my heart was to help me gauge my emotions. Well, it was beating now, and for good reasons. A very scary time in my life was playing out in my head, from my attack on the trail, to waking up in the hospital, to the confusion that followed. So. Much. Confusion.
“What’s his name?” I heard myself ask.
I said nothing. Not at first. Then I asked her to repeat it, and she did. I asked her to repeat it again. She did, again.
“You are saying Jeffcock, correct?” I asked.
“I am, yes.”
“And that’s a name people give their actual kids?”
“Not so much now, no. But in the Middle Ages, yes.”
“The Middle Ages?”
“Yes, Ms. Moon.”
I drummed my nails on my desk and caught Alaine watching me drum my nails. I nearly snatched my hands away and hid them in my lap, as was my custom. Instead, I left them there—along with my ghoulishly misshapen nails. Hands someone would see on, say, a horror poster. Hands and nails and fingers of something that might snatch one’s ankles from under the bed. The sort of claws that left deep and bloody furrows in their victims. These weren’t nice hands, and these certainly weren’t nice nails.
Still, I drummed them slowly, noting again the thickness and sharpness of the nails. And maybe for the first time, I also noticed their purpose: to strike fear in the hearts of man. Except the woman before me—the woman with the looping song in her thoughts—wasn’t afraid. No, not at all.
“I think we both know to whom we are referring, Ms. Moon,” she finally said, her gaze sliding up from the desktop and de
“And what did he do to me twelve years ago?” I asked.
For some reason, I wanted to hear it from her. No, I needed to hear it from her. Hearing it from her would be the confirmation I needed that the events on that fateful night so long ago were, in fact, real. That I hadn’t made them up, or filled in the gaps. That, in fact, they had happened as I remembered them happening. Not that I ever questioned my own version of the story, but all I’d had was my memory... and that was it. My memory, and the resulting aftereffects, of course. Never before had anyone corroborated my version. Indeed, who could? Just me... and my attacker. And now, amazingly, this woman. This stranger.
There went my heart again, beat-beat-beating in my chest.
“You were attacked twelve years ago, Sam. You were attacked ruthlessly, deliberately, and with reckless abandon. You were left to die, but you wouldn’t die, of course. You would do the exact opposite. Live forever. Twelve years ago, my client—now deceased—rendered you into a vampire, and your life has never been the same since.”
“No one likes a know-it-all,” I said.
“I don’t know it all, Ms. Moon. But I know enough.”
“Since when do vampires make wills and retain attorneys?” I asked. I felt oddly deflated. This wasn’t the closure I’d been looking for. No, not by a long shot.
“Many do, Sam. May I call you Sam?”
“Knock yourself out.”
“My employer is sympathetic, shall we say, to the undead.”
“Your employer is a vampire?” I asked.
I nodded. For some reason, The Hairy Ones seemed to gravitate toward the practice of law.
“My employer helps those like you navigate the world of mortals. After all, special care must be considered if one is immortal... or close to it. Not all immortals run through graveyards and aimlessly stalk city streets at night. Like you, some have families. Many own extensive properties. And many fake their deaths to properly bequeath such estates to those they love or care about. As you know—and someday will discover firsthand—supernaturals such as yourself will outlive loved ones and friends. Sometimes, they will outlive governments and whole countries. An astute attorney can help a vampire or were creature start over again.”
J. R. RAIN SERIES:
Other author's books:
- Moon DanceMoon IslandArthurDark HorseVampire GamesMoon ChildVampire DawnThe Vampire With the Dragon Tattoo
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