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|Blood Ties(Blood Coven Vampire,book 6) by Mari Mancusi|
There are a lot of people in this world who want nothing more than to stand out in a crowd. To gain fame and fortune and be recognized wherever they go. They want attention. They want notoriety. And they’ll stop at nothing until they have five million followers on Twitter and TMZ has justified the expense of picking up their trail on every Starbucks run.
Which is all fine and good, in theory, anyway. But in the words of the wise old (and oh-so-classy) Pussycat Dolls: “Be careful what you wish for, ’cause you just might get it.” And once you do, you may be craving normalcy like a bastard. And there will be nothing you can do to get it back.
I, on the other hand, never wanted to be famous. Or notorious. Or anything “ous,” except maybe anonymous. A nondescript face in the crowd. A normal girl living a normal life with a normal job, a normal husband, and 2.3 normal kids playing out behind a normal white picket fence. Maybe we’d have a swimming pool, but that’s as wild and crazy as I ever wanted to get.
But no. During the last year, I’ve learned the hard way that normal just ain’t in the cards for me and my family. And, whether I like it or not, I’ve really got no choice but to let our freak flag fly for all to see.
For those of you just joining us (um, where have you been?!) it all started one night back in May. Back when I thought I *was* normal and my biggest worry was whether the guy I was crushing on knew I even existed. Back then, I still figured the world worked just like they told you in school and the laws of physics, gravity, and mortality applied to everyone—even my crazy twin sister, Rayne, who I decided, stupidly, to accompany on an outing to Club Fang, the local Goth joint, one fateful night.
That night started out good. I met a guy. A really hot one. Unfortunately, things went downhill from there after he mistook me for my vampire-wannabe sister and bit me in the neck, basically turning me into a vampire in a bloody bad case of mistaken identity. I was so not pleased, let me tell you.
You see, turns out, while I had been angling for a prom date and playing field hockey, Rayne had been going to night school classes, getting her vampire certification. The bite was sort of her graduation gift—her passport into the world of the undead. Magnus, the vampire, was supposed to become her blood mate, which is basically like a soul mate kind of thing for vamps, and the two of them were meant to live happily ever after as members of the Blood Coven in a crypt built for two.
Anyway, to make a long story somewhat short, Magnus and I ended up going on this wild adventure to England to find the Holy Grail (yes, the real one!), which evidently was the only thing that could cure me. During this time, we fell in love—go figure— and have been dating ever since. Not the normal boyfriend I’d hoped to find. But awesome, just the same. (Even though sometimes he can be a total workaholic, which can drive me insane.)
We’ve had a lot of adventures since then—and pretty much none of them normal. Like when my vampire-wannabe sister found out she was actually destined to become a vampire slayer instead. (Which became useful when the werewolf cheerleaders came to town.) Or when the vampire Jareth she once hated saved her life—and finally made her vampire dreams come true. And then there was the time me and my human friend Jayden managed to stop an evil Las Vegas vampire from destroying the Blood Coven from within. That was pretty amazing—even if it did almost kill both of us.
But, to be honest, the biggest paranormal turning point came not from the vampires at all, but from our very own parents. Our hippie-dippie mom and our absentee dad who, one day, decided to break the news that Rayne and I aren’t human at all—but rather full-blooded fairies! Not only that—but fairy princesses—next in line for the Light Court throne.
At that point, I had to kiss normal good-bye for good.
Hiding out from the fairies ended up being an adventure in and of itself—with Rayne and me spending some quality time at Riverdale, a school for vampire slayers deep in the Swiss Alps. That’s where Rayne met Corbin, a slayer-in-training who unknowingly fell for her vampire charms. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a happily-ever-after kind of love affair and ended with Corbin being turned into a vampire himself. Now he’s on the loose somewhere, probably plotting his revenge against the Blood Coven and my sister.
Which brings us to today. Mom’s off ruling Fairyland. We just buried our father, may he rest in peace. My sister’s going through a twelve-step program at a vampire rehab, trying to get control of her whole bloodlust thing. And an evil fringe group of Slayer Inc. that we uncovered at Riverdale (that calls themselves the Alphas) is determined to create vampiric fae hybrids in a bid to take over the world.
And, as for me? Well, I’ve just enrolled in Las Vegas High School—which seems like the normal thing to do.
We’ll see how long that lasts...
“Hey, Sunny, over here!”
I look up from stuffing my field hockey stick into my bag, my eyes widening with horror as they fall upon a long, black stretch limousine, pulling up curbside to my new high school, behind the waiting school bus. The window slides down and from inside I can see Magnus, still shadowed in the darkness, beckoning for me to come over. I try to pretend I don’t hear him. Don’t even know him. So of course that makes him shout even louder. As a rule, former knights in shining armor from medieval times can so not take a hint.
“Oy! Sunny! I’m right here!”
“Whoa, who’s the hottie?” whistles Kierra, the field hockey center and one of the only potential friends I’ve managed to score my first week here at Las Vegas High School. In other words, the last person on Earth I want to introduce to the Master of the Blood Coven—one of the largest vampire groups on the Eastern Seaboard—aka my current boyfriend, Magnus. Who, I might add, may soon become my former boyfriend Magnus if he doesn’t pull away from my high school parking lot in the next five seconds.