This morning I've been working on two projects -- The Renfield Syndrome and Crimson Sunrise. As I was going through them, I realize just how much my writing has changed. It's a good thing, but also reminds me of all the work I'm going to have to put into Crimson Sunrise to get it where it needs to be (I'm talking weeks and weeks worth of it).
Anyhow, for those of you who asked, here is a snippet of Crimson Sunrise. It's the prologue of the second installment, so you can see that you should expect something darker than Crimson Moon. I hope you enjoy it!
His teeth sank into my neck for a second time, and I cried out, raked my fingers into the freezing ground, and thrashed wildly. His bowed torso settled over my prone form as he gorged, pulling the life from my body to suffice his own. His loud swallows were horrifying in my ears, drowning out the terrified pounding of my heart.
Pushing futilely against his solid chest, I reached for my only defense and pulled his energy into my body for a second time. I allowed the burning and agonizing hum to engulf my muscles, even as my arms became placid, drawing strength from him as mine ebbed. Then, unable to contain the power building within, I projected it from my palms and sent it back out, unable to focus on where the energy released.
His body flew up and to the right. I heard rather than saw him collapse as he connected with trees and branches, and I rolled onto my stomach. The world spun and wobbled, blurry images in the distance too hazy to focus on as I made it to my feet. I stumbled on unsteady legs, unable to run, too weak from the blood loss. Warm wetness trickled from the oozing wounds in my throat and pooled down my neck and shoulder, spreading into a blooming, decorative red stain in my cream colored sweater.
Somehow my worthless, watery legs supported my weight and allowed me to stagger to the fire pit. The black stain left over from numerous bonfires filled me with a sense of dread, the shadows of the trees taunting me as they danced and swayed in the bright light of the moon. Even now, I knew the danger at my back was rising to his feet, prepared to finish what he started.
There was nowhere to run and nowhere to hide.
I didn’t bother bracing myself when I felt the devastating impact of a larger, and significantly more powerful, body connecting with my back. He wrapped his hands around my shoulders, flipped me over, and pulled me into his arms. His savage teeth scored my throat a third time, and the fight left my body.
A deep sigh escaped as he ravaged the skin on my neck, shredding the vulnerable tissue at my throat. His teeth stretched the skin painfully as he gorged on the wounds that would kill me, my blood trailing down my chest and back. One swallow became another, then another, and another.
My gaze flittered to the dark sky above, and I detached from the bitter chill that had settled inside my chest. No longer suffering the cruel bite of the cold as the winter air and the frigid ground sapped my body heat.
Blinking once, twice, I was able to see past the shoulder blocking out the moonlight. The stars were out -- the clouds allowing a reprieve for the night -- twinkling and bursting in the sky.
The blue surrounding them was familiar and comforting somehow...
The sky reminded me of Caleb’s eyes when he was calm and happy. It was the most precious and rare shade of indigo in the color spectrum, and without a doubt, my favorite.
Thoughts of Caleb remained as my attention returned to the man cradling me in his arms. This was the only time I could reciprocate his love without fear of hurting him or the other person I adored. Decimus had been wrong. There was one true gift I could bestow, and it didn’t involve selling my soul.
My logical thoughts were slipping, memories becoming hard to latch on to, but I remembered the night he left, could hear the words he plucked so easily from my mind. He knew I yearned for him. He knew I needed him. And he knew if it weren’t for Caleb that I would have come to him. However, the most important words he glimpsed in my mind were ones that people always want to hear whispered into their ears, shouted from rafters, or spoken at random.
To remind them of just how cherished and important they are.
“I love you,” I mumbled weakly into his chest, grateful for the relief the admission provided, and watched as my breath turned into an icy white frost before fading from sight.