TASTE OF BLOOD
Enjoy this free excerpt from Kim Bagshaw's latest book, "William" below:
I looked up into the face of a man. I could not even describe him as handsome, or good looking, because he seemed beyond that. I froze as he leaned forward on the railing folding his hands over each other and in my mind.
He looked directly into my face, and I could almost feel his eyes burning into mine as one corner of his mouth lifted in a slight smile. His hair seemed a little bit long reaching just below his ears and appeared to be styled into layers, but his face is what amazed me the most, it seemed perfect against the ebony black hair color. He wore a white shirt which seemed to glow in the light and black pants.
I swallowed hard, my nerves on edge and my cheeks flushed as the colours of the light beams danced across him. He seemed to change as he moved, distorted by the light somehow. He continued to smile at me not parting his lips.
A jumble of feelings became evident all at the same time, fear, excitement, shyness, embarrassment and an uncontrolled attraction that I had never felt before. Suddenly he stood up straight, his movement fast, his expression changing as someone bumped me from the side, and I looked to see whom it was, letting out a startled shriek. Some guy was carried away dancing like a manic Indian around a bon fire and he almost knocked me over. He apologized and moved on unsteady on his feet from too much drinking.
I looked back to the balcony and felt my breath catch in my throat - he was gone and the space where he had been standing was empty. I searched the rest of the balcony and watched the stairs but he was nowhere to be seen. I didn’t realize until then that my whole body was shaking slightly and that my hands had gone cold even though they were moist with perspiration.
I went over to the bar, my eyes scanning the club trying to find the illusion I had seen, or so it felt. He couldn’t have disappeared that fast. I would have seen him coming down the stairs. The way he had stood looking at me had literally frozen me to the spot, and a stabbing pain had opened up my heart again, cupid’s poisonous arrow had found its mark.
I felt hollow inside, even though a few minutes ago I had felt fine. The music changed, starting off with the sound of a beating heart and I listened, feeling it fall into rhythm with my own, as its vibrations penetrated me, even the clubs beams pulsed to that rhythmic beat and I began to feel like I was being drawn into some form of hypnotic state. Around me was a weak scent of something close to honey yet was not.
I desperately wanted to go back to the dance floor, the need urgent as though something was enticing me, making me panic. I could feel invisible hands tugging at my arms. I hurried back onto the dancefloor, bumping into a few people on the way and fell back into tune with the music, this time more aware of everything around me.
Suddenly, a cold breeze whipped past my face, blowing my hair into my eyes and I turned in the direction from where it came. I felt my breath catch in my throat again as my heart skipped a beat; and there he was, not even six meters away. He was not dancing, but just standing, staring at me, his pose casual and relaxed; his eyes boring into me. His arms were folded and he had an expression of fascination and amusement on his face. The people around him didn’t even seem to notice that he was not dancing and I found this odd. Closer, his features were more pronounced and more beautiful, his skin pale, but his body so built that he looked strong. I felt myself blush, discomfort and fear running through me now, I felt my legs go to jelly as a glint crossed his eyes in the passing light beams.
Suddenly the dance floor went dark and I heard shrieks and whistles of delight. I knew they were changing over to the UV lights.
“No!” I whispered frantically, as I already knew that when they came back on he would be gone.
I swung in all directions feeling confused, excited and frightened all at the same time. Who was this strange man? Something out of the ordinary was happening here, and I began to feel that he was stalking me yet I also knew that he was possibly interested in me.
Then, there was a hot breath on my ear, “Don’t turn around.”
That velvet voice flowed over me like silk over a naked body, despite the loud music. His voice was so soft and gentle it penetrated deep into my mind, so soothing, so calm and yet almost hypnotic in a way, and goose bumps broke out on my skin as I shivered.
I felt him lift my hand and gently pass his finger over it. It felt like ice over my skin, yet like an electric spark that seemed to travel up my arm and into my heart that left me tingling, and as I flinched he tightened his grip on my hand entwining his fingers in mine. I felt his arm gently encircle my waist making my stomach lurch in shock, as he lifted my free hand to the nape of his neck. I touched hair that was soft as silk, but the back of his neck cool. My heart was thumping so loud that I could feel it in my ears, and every nerve in my body felt on edge. I was sure that he could feel it against his arm as well.
The music changed to something a bit slower as the DJ announced a song for the lovers and he began to move my body with his to the rhythm of the music and it was as if we became one - one body, one dance, one soul. I could almost feel him lifting me up, supporting my weight with his arms. I felt his body against my back; his chest and arm muscles strong and I found myself wondering in my daze if this was just a dream. I laid my head against his shoulder without even really thinking about what I was doing, and began to feel dreamy as my eyes closed. I could smell his overpowering scent, a smell I had never experienced before, his breath on my neck and it made my head swirl.
“I am not going to hurt you,” he whispered in my ear, "You can relax.”
I felt every muscle in my body obey him and for the first time in months I felt happy and at peace. A new sense of feeling secure and safe flowed over me, replacing all negative energy. I swallowed hard my mind blank, my body moved like a programmed robot. I was dancing with a complete stranger and yet it felt natural as if we had danced a thousand times before. I saw Tina’s attention turn away from the guy she was talking to and the way she straightened up was way too fast for my liking. I watched her say something to him in his ear and he took a step towards us, but Tina stayed him with her hand pointing to me as she shook her head.
As I was turned in the other direction, I saw Rachael frozen to the spot, two bottles of water in her hands and her mouth hanging open in shock. The people around us had seemed to move away slightly and I watched as she hurried over to Tina. I realized that it wasn’t the people that had moved away but us, or rather him, into the far corner of the dance floor.
I tried to turn round to see him but he applied gentle resistance. He stopped dancing and kissed me on my neck his lips hot against me telling me again not to turn around and that I was safe. I exhaled realizing I had been holding my breath and heard a moan escape my throat at the same time. All I wanted to do was look at him. I closed my eyes as I felt him press my body against his as he brought my neck into his mouth and then there was a burning sensation. My body began to quiver inside as a strange feeling ran from my neck down my back and legs and I felt like they could not hold me any longer.
I tightened my grip on his arm as colors began to dance behind my eyelids. They were beautiful shades of red and indigo, colors I had never seen before, that seemed to spiral and change shape. All sounds vanished completely and in its place a humming began in my ears. Deep in the pit of my stomach something I had not felt for a while stirred and warmth began to pulse within as the sensation of his mouth kissing me on my neck intensified. His lips and his tongue were like coals on my skin, yet the rest of him like cold water drowning a fire and I found myself curling my fingers into his hair as our dance seemed to become almost provocative.
Whoever he was, I wanted him. I wanted to be with him forever. I felt as if I had been pulled out of misery and despair into a plain of love and peace that I had been craving for so long and I never wanted him to let me go again. It was as if he was drawing all of the negativity and blackness out of me into himself.
Somewhere in-between the blur of these intense emotions I felt something draped over my head and around my neck. The music became unbearably loud again replacing the pleasant peaceful humming and the people around me louder than before. I opened my eyes quickly and gasped in shock as his arm disappeared from around my body making me stumble. I threw my arms out as I caught my balance nearly falling and snapping out of the dreamy state I had been in I swung round. The space behind me was empty, he was gone again taking with him all the sensations I had felt.
I heard Tina and Rachael shout my name at the same time, but I ignored them. I suddenly found it difficult to breathe, my neck paining now and I realized that I was having an anxiety attack. This time a mixture of desperation and fear welled up and I began running through the club as hot tears filled my eyes, but it was hopeless, I wouldn’t be able to find him any way, there were too many people around. Eyes began to turn in my direction as people now watched me, some with looks of disgust on their faces and some surprised and perplexed at my state. One woman pointed at me a look of horror on her face.
It was then that my head began to spin and my legs became weak, everything around me began to blur as I broke out in a cold sweat. I felt myself starting to sag to the floor when two strong arms caught me.
I felt terribly weak, drained in a way and didn’t even bother to look who had caught me, I let my head fall back holding onto the necklace for fear of it been stolen, and as we passed the door I smelt that strong scent again, but I was too weak to lift my head or open my eyes.
I heard him whisper from close by, “It’s alright, you’ll be fine. I shall see you again soon, now sleep.”
Suddenly there was silence.
To read more, grab your copy of Kim Bagshaw's latest book, "William" now available on the Books Page or at selected nearest book retailers.