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Night's Master

Book 3 10/08

PASSION HAS A DARKER SIDE…

Kathy McKenna was sure that the little Midwestern town of Oak Hollow would be isolated enough for safety, but the moment the black-clad stranger walked into her bookstore, she knew she was wrong. Raphael Cordova exudes smoldering power, and his sensual touch draws Kathy into a world of limitless pleasure and unimaginable dangers.

Oak Hollow was supposed to be neutral territory for Supernatural beings. Instead it has become home to an evil force determined to destroy them—and kill any mortal who gets in the way. As leader of the North American vampires, Raphael has always put duty first, but then, no woman ever enthralled him the way Kathy does. And as the enemy’s terrifying plan is revealed, Raphael’s desire could be a fatal distraction for all his kind, and for the woman he has sworn to love forever…

NIGHT’S MASTER

Chapter 1

Most said it was going to be the end of the world as we knew it. Some said that was ridiculous, but those who weren’t too busy or too blind to see the signs knew the truth. Mankind had been heading for this showdown ever since the preternatural creatures decided that, although they were small in number when compared to humans, they possessed the strength and the Supernatural power to pretty much run the planet any way they saw fit. And since the nations of the earth had finally achieved universal peace, most of the world’s armies had been drastically reduced or done away with altogether, leaving only local law enforcement agencies to protect the citizens, while national governments debated how to best handle a possible future threat.

In the last six months or so, there had been an escalating number of battles between the two major baddies - the Werewolves and the Vampires.

No one really knew who was winning the war. In the past, when the humans had made war, everyone knew who was winning. The number of casualties, both civilian and enemy, had been reported far and wide. Pictures of those killed in battle had appeared in newspapers, on television, and online. The nightly news had flashed brutal, graphic images of the dead and wounded being carried off the field of battle.

It was different with the Supernatural creatures. Their battles were fought in the dark hours of the night in remote areas around the world. The bodies of the fallen were never found. The Vampire dead disintegrated in the sun’s first light. The Werewolves were carried off by others of their kind; some said the dead were eaten so as to leave no trace.
Smart humans quickly learned two things: how to repel the preternatural folks and how to stay out of their way. Those who weren’t so smart usually ended up as someone’s dinner. Except for a few reporters who had more curiosity than brains, human casualties had been few so far.

Of course, everyone knew that sooner or later, mankind would have to stand up and defend themselves against whichever side won the war between the Werewolves and the Vampires, but until then, the smart thing to do was just stay out of the line of fire.

Being a pretty smart girl myself, I high-tailed it out of the big city and took up residence in a small town in the Midwest, figuring there wasn’t anything in Oak Hollow to attract either the Vampires or Werewolves. After all, the town wasn’t big enough to appear on most maps, and since the Werewolves and the Vampires seemed to like bright lights and big cities, moving to a sleepy little community like Oak Hollow seemed like the perfect solution.

I bought a cute little house made of logs for practically nothing, opened a new and used bookstore on the corner of Third and Main, and figured I’d stay out of danger while the Werewolves and the Vamps killed each other off.

Of course, you know what they say about the best laid plans…

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copyright Madeline Baker 2007