Hi guys! We have Charlotte Stein popping in today with her new release Frostbitten, we have a great excerpt and a brilliant giveaway so check out the post and enjoy! <3 ~Pixie~
Shy nurse Cora both dreads and lives for the moments she sees Zeke, an orderly at the hospital where she works. Zeke is too handsome, too compelling, too much, and seems totally unaware of Cora. But before she can bring herself to his attention, an explosion rips through the hospital Christmas party.
Zeke has noticed Cora—in fact, he’s so irresistibly drawn to her that he saves her from the explosion by turning her into a vampire, much to the jealousy and resentment of his partner, Merrick. Zeke hates being a vampire, and now that she’ll live, doesn’t want Cora to suffer his fate. If they can both resist the overwhelming instinct to bond, joining their bodies as Cora draws her maker’s blood, she might be able to return to her normal human life.
As Merrick uses every erotic trick to keep Zeke distracted from the blood passion, Cora becomes more and more drawn to both of her reluctant captors. And more and more happy to abandon her old life in exchange for an eternity with two hot immortal lovers. All she has to do is convince Merrick and Zeke that being a vampire isn’t all that bad.
This new guy just looked at her like she’d done something wrong. If Zeke was handsome, this stranger who’d accompanied him to the holiday party was beautiful—but it was a cruel beauty. His face was a knife, lean and sharp-angled, with a mouth that barely seemed to move when he spoke. She couldn’t imagine that mean mouth smiling, or laughing, and if it did she knew the feeling wouldn’t reach his eyes.
Those eyes wouldn’t understand what happiness was. They were practically stones in his face, too hard and cold for anything as petty as emotion. And when they lit on her, she was sure they got worse. The disdain that danced across their surface was a palpable thing. It wasn’t something she could explain away, or attribute to paranoia.
This was as obvious as Zeke’s warmth. It made her wonder why on earth Zeke and the stranger were friends—because they clearly were. As soon as the stone-eyed one had finished assessing her, he hissed something back at Zeke, in that way people have when they’ve known someone for a long time. It spoke of embarrassment and understandings and issues and all kinds of things she wasn’t a party to.
She couldn’t even listen in. They were right next to her, yet somehow they spoke so quietly and quickly she couldn’t quite hear. She heard Stone-eyes snap Enough, however. Oh she heard that all right. And she saw the force he used when he put a hand on Zeke’s shoulder. He was stronger than he looked—much stronger than Zeke, apparently, despite the disparity in their size. The new guy couldn’t have been more than six foot, to Zeke’s eight hundred million and seventy-nine. And he was thinner too, much thinner.
But the pressure made Zeke wince.
It made him let go of her arm.
The loss was almost as bad as the rest of this weirdness. She wanted to grab his hand and haul it back, and only two things stopped her. The first was how absolutely ridiculous that was, and the second was the glare Stone-eyes snapped to her when she came close to reaching for Zeke. She lifted her own hand an inch, but he reacted as if she’d leaped onto Zeke’s shoulders. She wasn’t even sure how the stranger knew she’d moved.
But he did—in truth, he seemed to know before she was even aware. His contempt-riddled gaze darted down to her curled fingers, and then it backhanded her across the face. She nearly stumbled, and probably would have if it hadn’t been for Zeke. He saved her again. He caught her by the arm and set her right.
Of course it only made things worse.
Now Stone-eyes was trying to murder him with a look. It actually seemed like horror in his expression, when he whipped it around on Zeke. Horror with a side order of fury, she thought, even though neither of those things made any sense. What was so terrible about Zeke touching her? Unless . . . unless . . .
Zeke never seemed to have a girlfriend.
He didn’t make advances on anyone.
Oh God, were they . . .?
“I didn’t mean to get in the way,” she started, and then stopped. She sounded like an absolute idiot. She was an idiot, for getting all of this so wrong. She’d been sure something was going on between them, but clearly that had been her imagination working overtime. He was with this guy. He had to be with this guy.
So why did he bark out a bunch of words when she tried to pull away?
“No,” he said. “That’s not what you’re doing.”
And he quite clearly meant it. He held on to her arm, despite her best efforts to extricate herself. He ignored the hand on his shoulder, now pulling him hard enough to turn him sideways. But it was his gaze that really meant the most. It was so full of yearning she actually felt okay about labeling it as such.
This is what it is to be wanted by someone.
To be wanted so much they would do anything to keep you with them—a thought she found dramatic and overblown, until the terrible thing occurred.
It seemed to happen all at once. There was a sound like rolling thunder, so out of place she tried to turn and see what it was. Everyone around her did too. No one really got the chance, however. The fire followed the thunder, too quick to escape from it. It was all around them. It rolled up in a great wave from somewhere close to the windows, taking everyone with it.
It should have taken her with it too. She felt the blast hit her, and knew her feet had left the ground. One side of her face was burning, one arm scorched half away in an instant. She knew she should have been flying or melting or whatever it was that happened when you were in the middle of an explosion. But then somehow, somehow Zeke was holding on to her. That was his hand still hanging on to her unburnt one. She could see his face through the fire, the edges turning to cinders in a way that should have killed him.
It should have hurt him the way it hurt her.
But it didn’t. Of course it didn’t. These were her last thoughts before she disintegrated into nothing, and they wanted something amazing to go out on. There was only one possible explanation, and she clung to it. He’s not human, her mind called out into the void. Oh my God, he’s not human, he’s not human.
And then there was nothing but darkness, and silence.
Read more at: http://riptidepublishing.com/titles/frostbitten (Just click the excerpt tab)
Charlotte Stein is an RT-nominated erotic romance writer of over thirty novellas and novels. She lives in West Yorkshire with her husband and cheeky dog.
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