Vampire Alliance #2
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal
Number of pages: 369
Word Count: 112,000
Cover Design by Angela McGurk
Photography by Matt McGurk Photography
Eve hadn’t wanted a second
marriage, she wanted to remain happily unmarried rather than curse another good
man to Rob’s fate. If only Tul had listened to her protestations. Instead the
Senate are intent on making her relive her own personal hell. Worse, the
instrument they seem intent on using to bring about her suffering is the
creature, the merciless drone they’d created from all that remained of Rob.
The world seems to be conspiring
against Eve and the Alliance, and even among Johan’s band of rebels not
everyone is happy to have Eve as part of the group. With Tul missing and
friends few on the ground, Eve begins to slip back into the pit of despair
which had once consumed her and that may just lead her to behave more
recklessly than ever before. Mistakes have consequences however, and for Eve
the consequences of her actions may just decide the course of the future.
Is there a way to save Tul? Does
anything of Rob remain in the Senate controlled puppet his body’s become? More
importantly, why are the Senate determined to take control of Eve and just how
far will they go to gain possession of her?
green satin dress is torn and blood coats the bottom of my skirts where I’ve
waded through the gore of a battlefield. My sword is only loosely grasped in my
hand, its tip trailing along the ground as I no longer have the will to hold it
up. My hair is wispy, coming loose from the pins and twists which Vanessa Rosa
and Sophie-Jayne had so painstakingly plaited into it earlier. The beads and
jewels from my curled tresses are falling out around me and cracking in the
heat, but I don’t care.
The flowers that
had decorated the pews have burned away and the soot from the blaze which
destroyed them smears my cheeks where once there had been blusher. My mascara
hasn’t run yet and my eye shadow is still in place because I can’t let myself
cry. If I begin to weep I will never be able to stop again. I will weep and
weep and my bloody tears will flood the Earth in some twisted corruption of a
biblical punishment wrought by a vengeful god.
Flames are still
licking up the pews but I cannot feel their heat. I can’t feel anything over
the ache in my chest, the suffocating pressure constricting my throat as I make
my way back down the aisle. I step over bodies, both friend and enemy, as the
train of the dress Tulloch had dreamed for me soaks up yet more gruesome
evidence of what has taken place.
So many have
died today and I wish I’d died with them.
Why does this
heart still beat its slow percussion in my chest? Why does this brain still
plague me with memories of what had gone before and dreams which will never
come to pass? Why does the blood in my veins still move from organ to organ and
back again when I long for it to stop, when I long for it to coagulate and turn
black? I wish for the world to fade and my body to decay. I want this pain to
end but it won’t, just like it hadn’t last time.
I find what I’m
looking for at the top of the aisle, a scrap of paper now scorched and tattered
round the edges. Blood has dripped and sprayed over the document and it’s only
through luck that the grotesque blots haven’t obscured our names and
signatures; Eve Blakethorn and Tulloch Sullivan, the scrawls that make us man and
I hadn’t wanted
to go through another wedding.
I hadn’t wanted
to curse another good man.
I hadn’t wanted
to feel this all consuming grief again.
And this time
they haven’t even given me a few days of joy.
I had wanted a
civil ceremony. It could have been carried out in the hotel over Alliance
headquarters where it would have been safer. It would have been recognised,
legal, everything we needed. However, Tul had come from a different age and he
had wanted a church, much like Rob had once done. He had wanted flowers and
readings and an organist. He had wanted to see me in a wedding dress. I allowed
him the roses, I allowed him 1 Corinthians 13 and three hymns played on the out
of tune church instrument. My only sticking point had been the dress. I didn’t
want to wear the white of an innocent young bride. Instead I’d insisted on
wearing the dress he had commissioned. Even revealing the scars on my back
hadn’t put me off wearing this masterpiece, though now it’s tattered and
stained beyond repair.
I shouldn’t have
conceded at all to any of his demands. We should’ve remained happily unmarried,
just like I’d wanted.
They’d timed it
perfectly, the Enforcers. They let us sign the register, they gave us time to
say the final prayer and sing the final hymn. They let me believe I may yet be
allowed a husband, and then they’d attacked. There had been no warning and
there had been no mercy. They had mown us down with silver bullets, cut through
necks with silver coated blades. For once they didn’t stop to make sure those
they killed could be taken back to the Senate and revived as Senate puppets.
Today they killed just to show they could. Today they set fire to a church with
people still inside and they had laughed as vampire citizens screamed and
begged for their lives. Today they took a husband from me, again.
The fact that
they had taken Tulloch away alive doesn’t comfort me. Hadn’t they done the same
to Rob? What will they make Tul suffer before they have him killed, before they
bring him back as one of those creatures, just like they had Rob? How will they
make him pay for protecting me before they bring about the future I’d predicted
the moment he proposed? How long before they destroy him?
The first tear
spills despite my endeavours to prevent it falling. The second rolls over my
cheek soon after. They just keep coming as I clutch my second marriage
certificate to my chest and I don’t move, even as the wooden beams supporting
the church ceiling creek and groan as the fire continues to smoulder. I pay the
sounds no heed, not caring if the ceiling falls on me. The heat causes my skin
to blister and bubble and peel away but I don’t feel the burns. All I feel is
the same agonising weight of loss that had once sent me catatonic. Let oblivion
come and this time please don’t let me wake up. I fall to my knees and then
curl up on the floor, staring blankly into the fire while still holding the
stained page to my chest. Let me burn to ash. Let my flesh become dust and my
heart become unrecognisable. Let me disappear as if I had never lived or loved
I hear my
friends calling for me from the doorway, not wanting to pass through the
flames. I can hear Vanessa so she’s survived at least, although I think
Sophie-Jayne is among the charred bodies in the pews. I don’t have the strength
to answer the people who beg me to respond, who want me to go back to them. I
don’t have the willpower to go on like this anymore. I cannot go through this
I should be
surprised when Johan appears at my side, his skin beginning to char just as
mine is. He’s the leader of the Alliance, why had the others let him come for
“He would never
forgive me if I let you die,” Johan yells over the crackle of the fire.
“Neither of them would forgive me that decision.”
Angela is the author of the
Vampire Alliance series. Books one and two, Absolution and Allegiance, are both
available for Kindle. Antithesis will follow later in 2014.
While currently occupied running
her wedding stationery and graphic design business, Angela spends much of her free time writing, reading, and trying
to find a way of saving all the worlds in her head before they evaporate to
some forgotten place never to be retrieved.
As well as being a designer, business owner and writer, Angela is the
mother to two fantastic children and wife to a husband who still hasn’t read
She grew up in a small
Northumbrian pit village and briefly lived in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne where the
Vampire Alliance series is set. One of her favourite places in the world in
Rome and when she gets around to finishing the re-write of the prequel to the
Vampire Alliance series this will be set in Rome. The prequel, currently going
under the working title of ‘Irredeemable’ has been a workin progress for
fourteen years, originally written in Angela’s early teens it is currently
being re-‘vamped’ and will be published sometime after ‘Antithesis’.
Guest Blog: An Interview with the Senate’s 1352
Normally interviewers get to speak to the heroes of books but we’ve jumped on the chance to publish an interview with the Senate’s soldier, 1352. 1352 was created from the corpse of executed Senate Northern Chief and Alliance Infiltrator, Robert Blakethorn. This interview was carried out during the events documented in Allegiance: The Vampire Alliance Book Two by Angela Louise McGurk. We’ve finally been granted permission to publish the discussion. While the interview notes have been handed over to us we have been informed neither the interviewer nor the transcriber ever resurfaced after their meeting with 1352.
Interviewee: 1352 (Robert Blakethorn?)
Interview Date: 10th January 2013
Interview Time: 20:00 hrs
Interviewer: Matilda Hall
Transcriber: Stephanie Johnston
20:00 hrs: 1352, it’s... lovely to have you here. I don’t often get to speak with the villain of the piece.
20:00 hrs: Lovely? You sound dubious and you smell afraid. Although I suppose you have every right to be afraid if you’re going to begin by accusing me of being a villain. I’m a Senate soldier. I carry out orders issued by my government who have the best interests of the people at heart.
20:01 hrs: I think some degree of fear is justified; I’m only mortal after all.
20:01 hrs: Your fear is... tantalising. Perhaps you should remember that I am simply a blood drinking predator to your only mortal. *Quirks brow*
20:02 hrs: Ahem. It’s interesting that you think the Senate have the best interests of the people at heart. Is that like they had your best interests at heart when the chopped off your head?
20:03 hrs: *Considers Matilda* I am 1352. The Senate have never decapitated me. I am unaware of what Robert Blakethorn did to merit his execution but due process was followed. I am not Robert Blakethorn.
20:04 hrs: There’s really nothing left of the man you were?
20:04hrs: I am loyal. I am strong. Robert Blakethorn was a weak traitor. I am not Robert Blakethorn.
20:06 hrs: I’ve read Absolution: The Vampire Alliance Book One which documents recent events in the vampire world. Did you feel nothing when you shot Eve Blakethorn, who’s now Eve Sullivan? She was your wife.
20:07 hrs: She was Robert Blakethorn’s wife, not mine. She is an enemy of the state and must be brought to justice. I simply wish I’d killed her, or wounded her severely enough that Tulloch Sullivan hadn’t managed to turn her in time to save her.
20:07 hrs: You genuinely feel nothing for Eve?
20:09 hrs: 1352?
20:09 hrs: I feel... frustrated by Eve Sullivan. She is my enemy. She was sired by a man who should not have turned her. She shouldn’t be his.
20:10 hrs: Because she should be yours?
20:10 hrs: *Laughs* She should be dead.
20:10 hrs: Well you gave that your best shot.
20:10 hrs: I think you’ll find it was my worst. I still can’t believe I missed her heart.
20:10 hrs: Perhaps you wanted to miss.
20:11 hrs: Would you like that to be true? Are you determined to find some part of Blakethorn in me? Would it make me redeemable in your eyes, a little less of a villain?
20:12 hrs: It would make you Robert Blakethorn, a victim, and that would be easier to accept than your callousness.
20:12 hrs: Callousness?
20:12 hrs: You don’t feel anything at all, do you?
20:13 hrs: *Grins, eyes glinting* I feel. All vampires feel while feeding, no matter what type of vampire they are. I feel hunger, need, excitement... I feel desire.
*1352 leans towards Matilda, inhaling as his lips brush her throat* I feel all of those things.
20:13 hrs: I’d like you to sit back please, 1352. Or I shall call for security.
20:13 hrs: What security? I believe you may find we’re now alone here, the three of us.
20:14 hrs: I think we should bring this interview to a close.
20:14 hrs: I concur. All this talking has left me rather in need of a drink.
End of Interview
While little information regarding the execution of Robert Blakethorn or his conversion into 1352 is in the public realm, we have managed to obtain a copy of the execution order which brought about Chief Blakethorn’s fall and 1352 inevitable rise.
We’re hoping to find further details in Allegiance: The Vampire Alliance Book Two which was released in February and is available from http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00I80ZP6S.
Books one and two in the Vampire Alliance series, Absolution and Allegiance, are available to buy on Amazon’s .com, .co.uk, .com.au and .ca sites.