I'm so pleased to have Elizabeth Noble on the blog again today. This time it's for her upcoming release from DSP Publications, The Vampire Guard book 2, Quarry.
The members of the Vampire Guard—Jonas Forge, spy and soldier turned cop; computer hacker extraordinaire Blair Turner; Declan, thief, con man, and ex-pirate; and medical examiner and werewolf Dr. Lucas Coate—face a dangerous and elusive enemy.
And this time, it’s personal.
Over the course of three hundred years, a man has touched each of their lives in ways they are only just realizing. When a hunt for a psychotic killer in the present resurrects memories and clues from the past, they discover how they have been affected and are bound by the existence of a ruthless vampire criminal. Now, while preventing a heist at a high-tech art show and thwarting several large-scale explosions, the team must employ their unique blend of science and supernatural abilities to put an end to the machinations of the man toying with their lives.
This time, he won’t slip through their fingers.
This time, it’s more than a case. It’s a hunt, and Forge, Blair, Declan, and Lucas won’t stop until they’ve captured their quarry.
Southern California, Present Day.
Declan sprinted into traffic and across the street, dodging cars effortlessly as he ran. Blair bolted after him.
Cars were speeding through the street, horns blaring when they were cut off by other vehicles traveling in from intersecting thoroughfares. Squealing tires followed almost immediately in the wake of all the various tones from the horns. The noise was ear-shattering, and the commotion caused by traffic lights out of control was almost impossible to comprehend. Blair was running after Declan at such a high rate of speed that headlights and streetlights appeared as streaks crossing his path. It was dizzying.
One car swerved wildly, and Declan was cut off, nearly running right into its bumper. The cacophony of horns and tires increased trifold. Blair was willing to bet most of the drivers never saw Declan weaving through the pandemonium since he moved so quickly.
“Bastard,” Blair grumbled.
Blair was a vampire, the same as Declan, and could see Declan’s actions though human or werewolf eyes weren’t able to. Too bad Blair couldn’t mimic Declan’s smooth moves. A car careened around a corner and right into Declan’s path. He jumped up, slid across the hood on his ass, and hit the pavement running without missing a beat.
Blair hated him.
Blair’s actions were less than smooth, and trying to keep up, even though he was the faster runner between them, made him feel horribly inept. His attempt at Declan’s move over and around the cars resulted in Blair’s face narrowly escaping an intimate meeting with the pavement.
Growling, he shoved off the ground and raced after Declan. They were chasing a human; it shouldn’t be this hard to catch the guy. The man was smart; he was using the flow of traffic, or, more precisely, manipulating the traffic to stay ahead of Declan and Blair. Whether he knew he was being chased by vampires, or even believed they existed, Blair had no idea. Now wasn’t the time to figure it out either.
Where the hell was Forge? Shouldn’t Blair’s soul mate be dropping from a rooftop or charging from some alleyway to tackle this asshole they were chasing about now? It was Forge’s usual MO, and Blair suspected Forge liked doing things that way.
Trouble was, he wasn’t doing it now.
They were separated by enough distance it wasn’t possible for Blair to hear Forge. The transmitter in his wristband wasn’t working. They were both vampires and soul mates, so they shared a very powerful emotional bond, each experiencing the other’s emotions. Their bond wasn’t going to help with details on their exact position, however. Blair suspected the traffic-light hack wasn’t the only hack going on right now. Their wristbands relied on radio frequency, as well as Bluetooth, and something was being used to jam their transmissions.
Blair would have to figure that little detail out later. He was preoccupied with keeping up with Declan and their suspect right now. Maybe he and the fourth member of their team, Lucas Coate, a werewolf bonded to Declan, were more reliant on the technology they used daily than their mates, but Jonas Forge and Declan had been born long before the use of electricity, let alone wearable wireless communications. They’d worked together as intelligence operatives without such tools and without the Internet. Blair really wished they’d get on with showing off those skills about now.
Declan rounded a corner, and Blair raced after him. There was less traffic on this street. Surely they’d catch up to the man they chased. The guy hit the fencing around a construction site at a full run, leaping halfway to the top and scrambling over the top before he jumped to the ground.
Barely breaking stride, Declan bent his knees and cleared the fence in one bound, landing neatly—and on both feet—on the other side. Blair heard him mutter something in French that sounded very unkind. The fact that they couldn’t catch a human who was slower and weaker, with worse eyesight in the dark, was clearly pissing Declan off.
Those details were certainly pissing Blair off. “Any time now, Forge,” he mumbled. The frustration he felt from his mate told Blair that Forge and Lucas weren’t close by and were struggling to get a fix on their location. Didn’t that just make their situation even better?
Blair tried to hurdle the fence Declan-style, but his leap fell short, and he slammed into the top rail, doubling over it with a grunt. He grabbed it and swung over but didn’t land nicely on his feet. Instead he dropped into a disorganized heap in the dirt. Blowing out a growl, he got to his feet and sprinted after Declan again.
Declan stopped at one end of the site. It looked like some sort of upscale apartment complex and appeared to be one of those places with stores, wine bar, restaurants, and loft apartments—all with a convenient parking garage underneath. Blair remembered seeing them referred to as lifestyle centers.
“Where’d he go?” Blair was a bit breathless.
Declan held one hand up and cocked his head, saying, “Shh… I think….” He pointed out a direction. “Over there. Hear him?”
Blair nodded and ran with Declan through the partially built complex. Thuds and pings echoed around the area and bounced off varied textured surfaces. It was difficult filtering the exact location of the sounds, but Declan seemed to be following a determined path. Blair followed Declan. Blair was the guy who did the research and ran the tech end of their team. He was stay-inthe-surveillance-van guy, not go-out-into-the-field guy. Those roles belonged to Declan and Forge. Blair liked the van and wanted his job back.
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