Dead Girls Don't Cry
The Undead Space Initiative Book 1
By Casey Wyatt
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Date of Publication: August 18, 2016
Soon, she faces the wrath of the entire vampire community. To escape retribution, she joins a settlement program to colonize Mars. Her choices are grim: hurtle through space to the red planet to face the unknown and possible death, or stay on Earth and face certain annihilation.
To make things even more complicated, a certain gorgeous rogue seems to be shadowing her every move...
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They always traveled in packs. Enough of them could take me down. Revenants were cousins to vampires, undead beings with too much spirit. Essentially ghosts with physical reality.
I picked up the pace, steering toward the middle of the street and well away from dark corners. If I had a heart rate, it would have been pounding. My blood was rare and prized. One sip and the revenants would keep me alive to serve as a drink dispenser.
I fished through my bag. Where was my cell? Jonathan would come. Provided I could find the damn phone.
Meaty thwacks rang out in the alley as I passed by.
Do not look.
A soft oomph, followed by a clipped English accent, “Try that again, bastards.”
A lone and gorgeous male vampire had been captured. Three revenants had him pinned against the wall. Two held his arms and one pinned his legs. Three more surrounded him like a pack of knife-wielding hyenas.
The vampire snarled. Long fangs bared, presumably pissed off at his capture. With his sculptured physique, he could handle the situation. Right?
None of the baddies had noticed me yet. I could leave.
Another punch landed, connecting with the vamp’s mouth. The crack echoed in the alley. Liquid splattered, followed by cruel laughter.
The vampire hottie spat, his lip broken. Blood trickled down his jaw, seeping into the stark white collar of his button down shirt. “Think twice before you cut me, mate. I’ll smash all of your fucking heads in.”
“Shut up, meat.”
One added, “I’m so scared,” before swinging his knife and tearing a gash in the vampire’s chest. The pack laughed. A revenant approached the vampire with IV bags.
Crap-a-roni, now I had to get involved. They planned to bleed him out. That’s what revenants did. They took a vampire’s blood and drained him or her dry. The blood was then sold to the highest revenant bidder. They believed our blood could remove the excess spirit from their bodies, returning them to their true vampire form.
Problem is—it’s a myth. There’s no way for a revenant to become a vampire, any more than I could become a zebra if I wanted to. These guys were zealots. Deranged lunatics.
“This is your last warning, blokes,” Mr. Sexy English accent said. I tried not to shiver at the sound of his rich voice. Heady whiffs of his sweet scented blood drifted my way. Like a fine wine, the smell promised a delicious and satisfying taste. Saliva pooled in my mouth. My fangs dug into my bottom lip.
“Well lookee here!”
Damn. I should have run when I had the chance. The pack turned in my direction, their faces eager for more blood. I cringed under the gaze of the hollow-eyed, pale-skinned nightmares who all wanted a piece of me.
The nearest one licked his gray, rubbery lips. “Yum. Dessert.”
I was too stupid to live. Why didn’t I run? My feet were frozen to the spot. I did the lamest, girliest thing possible. I swung my purse. And connected. A solid hit to the nuts.
The revenant shrieked, clutching his junk. “Bitch!”
The male vampire bucked, tossing the revenant off his left arm. Partially free, he ripped the arm off the other revenant before the thing could even react. With balled fists, Mr. Hottie crushed the skull of the captor holding his feet.
“Don’t stand there like a daft pony!” the vampire scolded. He snapped the neck of the nearest revenant, then motioned. “Get out of my way!”
“What? Without my help, you’d still be trapped against a wall!” I ducked and stepped aside, narrowly avoiding the gray-lipped revenant who had thought I was dessert.
“The rubbish bin would be more help than you!” Mr. English silenced two more revenants with brutal, neck-twisting efficiency.
“Oh really?” What a prick.
The revenant recovered from the nut bash and charged me again. His fingertips knocked off my ball cap. I kicked him in the stomach, grabbed the garbage barrel and slammed it over the revenant’s head as he honed in on me. The plastic bin wouldn’t kill the thing, but he couldn’t see either.
“Pathetic,” the vampire said.
Mr. English and I watched as the last revenant bounced against a brick wall before falling over, his legs scissoring.
“Time for this one to bugger off as well.” Mr. English yanked off the barrel and snuffed out the revenant with a bone-shattering blow to its head.
One by one the corpses disintegrated into dusty husks. A breeze blew through the alley and scattered the remains. Gray vaporous clouds floated around before dissipating into the air. To a passerby, the revenants’ final passage would look like dirty car exhaust.
“Well, I’m off then. Have good evening.” He brushed dirt off his tailored trousers. “Sod it, they scuffed my shoes. And this shirt is ruined.”
“Yeah. What a tragedy. You’re lucky. You could have been a revenant Slurpee.”
He sniffed at the suggestion. “I was never in any real danger.”
“You could have fooled me,” I retrieved my ball cap from the grimy sidewalk.
A late afternoon sunbeam penetrated the alley, illuminating the vampire’s blue-green eyes and highlighting the fine bone structure of his face. I tried not to gawk.
I gathered my tangled hair and mashed it under the hat. “Looks to me like they had you pinned against the ropes.” Did I mention he was gorgeous? Like a cover model. An underwear cover model. I cleared my throat. He was a total stranger, and while I bet he looked divine in only underwear, I needed to stop ogling him.
When he stared at me and didn’t reply, I lamely added, “You know? Down for the count.”
“I understood the reference, luv,” he said in his damn fine accent.
A man-shaped shadow shifted from across the street, forming a dark blot in the alley’s entrance. We weren’t alone.
One of the questions I get asked frequently in interviews is: What is the most interesting experience you’ve had (or some variation)?
As a writer, you’d think that my life is as adventure filled as the stories I’ve written but that’s not exactly the case. By day, I have a necessary day job that is kind of boring, but I can work from home so that’s cool. Like most people, I have to put my pants on one leg at a time and I have to pick up dirty sock and hairballs. Sadly, I don’t have access to fairy dust or a fairy that can actually dust. Instead, I live with my husband, two sons, and six cats (long story there about the kitties). Like most people, it’s the same thing most days.
That’s not to say nothing has ever happened to me. While one single thing doesn’t stand out, I have had a collection of cool experiences in my lifetime thus far. I’ve compiled a list and these really are in no particular order.
1. I gave birth to my youngest son on the bathroom floor. And before you ask, I went into labor and gave birth in the space of about twenty minutes. The kid couldn't wait!
2. I went to college in Washington DC. While there, I earned bachelor's degrees in Anthropology and Psychology. I figured, I should earn two BAs for the price of one.
3. While in DC, I was also an intern for two Smithsonian Museums (on separate occasions): The National Museum of American History and at The National Zoo. And yes, both places are as cool as they sound!
4. I'm a life-long sci-fi/fantasy geek. I love Star Trek and Star Wars. Since I've attended two Trek conventions, if pressed to choose, I'd say I love Star Trek more. With that said, I also love Doctor Who, Orphan Black, The Flash, I could go on and on. It’s a great time to be a geek!
5. I met my husband while working at a movie theater. I worked concessions and he was head projectionist. Yup, that was a cool job too.
6. I'm a proud member of Phi Mu Fraternity, Gamma Delta chapter. I even served as chapter president my senior year in college.
7. I taught myself to knit and crochet, during the dark time, while I avoided being a writer. I love to make socks, gloves, scarves and amigarumi. In between books, I fall back to my yarn stash for a bit.
8. I am a museum junkie. My younger son and I love to visit Old Sturbridge Village, The Springfield Museums, The Connecticut Science Museum, Mystic Seaport, The New England Air Museum, and The Springfield Armory. And those are only the ones we’ve visited in the past year. Whew! Fun fact: Lachlan’s Curse has a shout out to one of these museums but you need to read to the end to find out which one.
9. While researching Dead Girls Don’t Cry, a book about a vampire stripper who finds herself headed to Mars to join an Undead space colony, I learned more about space toilets than I ever needed to and there is such a thing as Google Mars. Do check it out!
10. In 2016, I gave my first panel and first workshop at a mid-sized fan convention (ConnectiCon 2016). Despite my initial worry that no one would be there except family and a few friends, our room filled to capacity. The conference asked us to return in 2017. How cool is that?
But enough about me. Let’s start a conversation about our life experiences in the comments section below. Thanks so much for taking the time stop by!