On the Edge of Humanity
A Vampire Seal Novel #1
S. B. Alexander
Genre: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: S. B. Alexander
Date of Publication: 12/27/2012
Number of pages: 320
Word Count: 120,000
Cover Artist: Streetlight Graphics
Sixteen-year-old Jo Mason is lost in a world where traipsing from one foster home to another is normal. She hates her life, she hates school and on most days, she hates living. If it weren’t for her twin brother Sam, she might already be dead.
Her normal world shifts one hundred and eighty degrees when she discovers her own blood tastes like candy and her eyes change colors like a mood ring. On top of that, her eyesight seems to be failing when she spies an otherworldly man, sporting bloodstained canines, who is trying to strangle a cop. The developments are shrouded when Sam goes missing between Anger Management class and History class.
She’s called to the principal’s office to meet Lieutenant Webb London, a Navy SEAL who is part of a secret team of natural-born vampires. His mission is to protect the twins from an evil cartel, but he’s too late. With Jo now under his protection, his team searches for Sam.
However, finding and rescuing Sam from the evil cartel may be the easy part. Jo learns she carries a dormant vampire gene that, if activated, could save him. As her normal world fades even more, pushing her closer to the edge of humanity, Jo must decide if her human life is more important than her twin brother.
With time as her enemy, she struggles to make a life-changing decision for both her and Sam.
A fire raced through my limbs as I sat in the principal’s office trying to process this new information. Webb had said the word vampire and not just vampire, but ‘natural-born vampire.’ What the hell did that mean?
I desperately wanted to run—to find somewhere to hide. I squeezed my eyes shut—tears threatening to spill. I needed Sam. Where was he?
A hand fell on my left arm, followed by a velvety voice that whispered something I couldn’t quite make out in my ear. His hot breath accelerated my pulse, causing the blood to surge through me—awakening my limbs. I twitched.
“Jo?” Webb whispered.
I looked up and met his gaze. He lifted his hand off my arm, and leaned back against the desk. He tilted his strong jaw and peered at me through mile-long lashes. I shifted my gaze. Tripp stood to Webb’s right with his hands cupped just below his belt.
My mouth was dry. I swallowed, taking in a gulp of air. “What do you mean by natural-born…?” The word was caught in the back of my throat.
Until a week ago, I had never picked up a book about vampires or anything related to one. They just plain freaked me out. Now the images of the books in the funeral home were swimming before me. I even had two of the books in my backpack, which was sitting around here somewhere. Between the books, the fanged man outside the hospital room and hearing Webb speak about vampires as if it were the most natural thing in the world, I pinched myself, making sure I wasn’t dreaming.
“Vampire,” Webb intoned. “Jo, you’re not a vampire yet. Right now, you only carry the gene. Those of us who are born with the vampire gene are normal mortals up to the time we choose not to be. However, at the age of sixteen or thereabouts, your body will start to go through what we call vampire puberty in preparation for the change.” He dipped his head, gesturing at Tripp.
What the heck was vampire puberty? I wanted to scream and laugh all at the same time.
“For example, Jo,” Tripp started to say.
He speaks. His voice was deep but with a gentle tone.
“For me, my gums started hurting when I was fifteen. I reached puberty early. Then, at seventeen, I discovered I liked the taste of blood,” Tripp explained as he nodded at Webb.
Like Webb, Tripp didn’t look a day over twenty-one. His sandy blond hair was cut short with the sides shaven just above the ears.
“One of the first things that usually happens is your eyes change colors. You’ll notice this when your emotional state alters in some way. But all this depends on your genetic make-up.” Webb flicked his head at Tripp. “He craved blood to the point it became a drug for him.”
Blood, a drug? My brain couldn’t wrap itself around that idea. Were there drug dealers who sold blood? Plus, he just described me. My eyes were changing colors, I craved blood and my gums had started aching a few minutes ago. I didn’t know if I should be relieved that I wasn’t crazy or panicked by the idea that I had a thirst for blood—or even worse, that I might be a vampire.
“You said I wasn’t a vampire yet. Will I be?” I held my breath, not sure I wanted to know the answer. My inner voice kept telling me to get out of here, as far away as possible.
A Vampire SEAL Novel #2
S. B. Alexander
Genre: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: S. B. Alexander
Date of Publication: 10/7/2013
Number of pages: 460
Word Count: 142,000
Cover Artist: Streetlight Graphics
New vampire Jo Mason had never imagined life with fangs, or drinking blood as her main meal. She has, however, dreamed of her first kiss, her first date and her first high school dance—but for a new vampire, none of those firsts come easy. Humans now tempt her appetite for blood and the Plutariums, a rogue team of vampires, want revenge against her family.
When her human friend Ben Jackson asks her to the May dance, Jo struggles to abide by vampire law. She isn’t sure if she wants to kiss him or taste his blood. She’s even more confused by the mixed messages coming from Vampire SEAL Webb London. The way he looks at her makes her want to jump off the nearest cliff and into his arms at the same time. Her guy problems, however, become the least of her worries when the deadly ones take center stage.
The Plutariums abduct and drug her. She wakes alone with Ben, stranded on an abandoned yacht in the middle of a storm-tossed ocean. Worse, she struggles to keep her bloodlust sated and it will be a battle to see who survives.
Webb’s footsteps pulled me out of my stupor. I opened my eyes to see him striding down the hall. His long, crescent-moon lashes framed his cobalt eyes that glistened every time he stepped under a hall light. He placed his hand in his pants pocket and withdrew a set of keys. Fingering through the clump of metal, he readied one in his left hand. He stopped, inserted the key into the deadbolt and twisted. Before he could open the door, I pushed him out of the way and bee-lined it for the bathroom. I wanted to barricade myself in and never come out.
I slammed the door behind me and locked it. I grabbed a small cup off the sink, filled it with cold water and downed it. I took several more drinks, then dropped the lid on the toilet and sat down. My tear ducts opened and the waterfall began. I couldn’t stop crying.
“Jo.” Webb knocked on the door. “Are you alright?”
“Go away.” I grabbed several tissues and blew my nose.
“Can I come in?” he asked.
“I said, go away.” I shuddered several breaths in-between sobs.
Why the hell did he want to come in? Did he want to talk? Ha! Now that would be funny if the irritating vampire wanted to talk. What was he going to do? Give me advice on boys?
“Please, I want to make sure you’re alright.” His voice had a soft timbre to it.
Why was everyone concerned about me? It wasn’t as if I were the queen of the compound. I was far from it.
“Jo?” He pounded on the door.
“You’re not going to leave me alone, are you?”
“Not until I make sure you’re—”
I flipped the lock. The door swung open with an ominous creak.
“See, I’m fine. Now go away.” I blew my nose again.
He stepped into the small space, and I scooted backwards, even though I wanted to lean into him, to nestle in his embrace and have him tell me everything would be okay. He took another step forward. The bewitching intensity of his soul-stealing blue eyes kept me from moving. I couldn’t look away. Was he trying to compel me? He raised his hand and wiped away my tears with the pads of his thumbs.
Suddenly, my mouth became dry. He was touching me, was close to me. I had no way to get around him. I closed my eyes. My face was hot. My nose was running like a waterfall, and I couldn’t stop crying. I was a complete mess.
“There’s no need to cry. You’re father is doing what’s best. Look at me,” he whispered.
I couldn’t pry my eyelids open. If I did I would crumble even more. I was in the middle of an emotional breakdown. I wasn’t about to bare my soul to a vampire who made my insides twist with excitement, let alone talk to him about Ben. I was so thankful he couldn’t read minds.
“Hey there.” He lightly rubbed my scarred cheek with the back of his fingers. “Open. Let me see those stunning eyes.”
My stomach did somersaults. More tears spilled. I couldn’t wrap my mind around his words, his voice, his touch, and his scent. Confusion snaked through me. First Ben and his sweet scent, and now Webb. While his scent didn’t make my throat burn, it sure did a number on the butterflies who were having a field day inside me. What the heck was happening to me?
I opened my eyes slowly, blinking away tears, and met his gaze. He searched my face like he was cataloguing every pore, every hair, and every facial detail. His gaze finally landed on my lips and my pulse jumped.
Damn the vampire.
His presence radiated strength and power.
My hands started shaking. He had to hear my heart racing and sense my anxiety. Or was it excitement?
What did he want from me? He had my mind in a jumbled mess, not to mention my arms all goosebumped.
He moved even closer, which I didn’t think was possible.
I couldn’t breathe. Oh my God!
He dragged the backs of his fingers over my scar, once again. “You know the man who did this to you will pay.” His voice was soft, breathy.
I really didn’t want to hear about my scar. It was the last thing on my mind and a horrific reminder of a night I never wanted to remember ever again.
“Breathe.” He leaned in and his hand disappeared behind me.
I stilled, my heart beating uncontrollably. What is he doing?
He grabbed the band out my hair and my freaky mane tumbled down, falling around my shoulders. He grabbed a few strands and placed them behind my ears. Darkness threatened the edges of my vision as his fingers tangled through my hair.
He lowered his head and whispered, “Life will get better. I promise.”
Shock hit me at his words, his promise. How could he be sure? Did he know something I didn’t? Could he read the future? Was that one of his special powers? I wanted to scream. I was standing in a small bathroom with a imposing creature who unnerved me, confused me, and made my pulse race with delight all at the same time. Was Sam right? Was there fire between us?
I shivered, and Webb wrapped his arms around me and pulled me to him. His heartbeat pounded in my ear as my body melted into his. This can’t be happening.
About the Author:
For those of you who know me, you know the ‘S’ stands for Susan in S. B. Alexander. I chose to use my initials since there were a few Susan Alexander authors out there.
The one thing I like about reading a book other than the story is reading about the author. Who is he or she? And, how did they become a writer?
For me, it’s always been a passion to write a book. I love to transport myself into other worlds—ones where vampires and the fantastical exist. Where life is the playground for the impossible.
I created fantasy worlds at a young age as a way to deal with life. Yep, I had imaginary friends and talked to myself a lot. I was always creating, thinking, drawing and writing. I believe words are the key to opening the door to extraordinary places with amazing characters that tell a great story.
My life has had a colorful journey. After high school I decided to forgo college. I enrolled in a business program and graduated in ten months with a certificate that allowed me access to Cooperate America. But, somehow the idea to enter into an unknown world at nineteen-years-old was daunting. Instead, I decided if the world was my playground why not join the military, and so I joined the Navy. The four years in the military was a great foreground to learn about life and the world around me. But, as the cliché says, Life goes on.
I traded the military for college. I became a High School Math Teacher and loved it before deciding to revisit the one thing I was frightened of—Cooperate America. I’ve held many roles in the cooperate arena from sales representative to sales manager, but I never lost my passion to write.
When I’m not working my full time job, and plotting my next novel, I love to play golf with my husband, and spend time with my two dogs.
I would like to thanks S. B. Alexander for providing The Vampire SEAL playlist: