A Midsummer Night's Demon - By Brenda Sparks
The fiery smell of the alcohol burned his nose long before the glass reached his lips. Ky Robinson slammed the last of his drink in a long gulp. The whiskey crawled fire down his throat to heat his belly. He leaned his elbows on the weathered bar and toyed with the glass, hands cradling the smooth tumbler with practiced ease.
“Another.” Ky tapped a finger on the lip of the empty glass.
He grunted a thanks when the bartender complied, never taking his eyes from the rest of the room. He was a hunter, a warrior, constant vigilance his creed.
He settled on a stool, the faux leather creaking under his muscular weight. He’d chosen a spot at the end of bar, one that put his back to the wall and gave him an unobstructed view of the room, just as he’d been trained to do centuries ago by the agency.
His position gave him the best possible advantage for observation. He barely noticed the décor. All these establishments seemed the same—dark, smoky with the stench of stale booze and sweat oozing from the walls. The kind of place a person could disappear from without anyone noticing.
The patrons…lowlife wasn’t quite descriptive enough a term. They were lower than low. Some of the seediest people on the earth. Most were human. Some were of his breed. Creatures of the night. Monsters lurking in the shadows that emerged to take the unaware to their graves.
And one of the worse sat not six feet from him chatting up an innocent.
No vampire needed to take from the vein any longer, for they could compel the minds of the people who worked in the blood banks or hospitals. Coerce them to hand over bags of blood. But some refused to relinquish the old ways. Known as the debauchee, they often allowed their bloodlust to consume them. They enjoyed violence and carnage, the thrill of the kill, and the agency he worked for hired vamps like himself to stop such miscreants.
Ky emptied his glass in three swallows, welcoming the burn. It felt good, like coming home, made him feel alive as the warmth spread throughout his body. He rolled his shoulders, his roped muscle and sinew flowed like water under the gray T-shirt he wore. He itched for a good fight, needed to burn off some excess energy and if his instincts were correct—and they always were—his itch would be scratched tonight.
Ice-blue eyes tracked the rogue’s movements, watching the male wrap his arm about the waist of his female companion to lead her toward the door with a deceptive gentleness. His body blocked Ky’s view of the woman, had all evening, but it didn’t matter that he’d not been able to get a good look at her, for she was not the one he pursued.
He wanted the male.
As if oblivious to the fact an agent stalked him, the male vampire paraded his escort out of the bar. They walked slow, taking their time like lovers out for a casual evening. But Ky knew better. Malevolence emanated from the male in waves.
The warrior sent his senses flowing out into the room in search of more debauchees, calculating how many he would face. His eyes scanned the room to see if any would follow the couple out the door. A slight disappointment settled over him when he realized none did. Seemed he would have only one to battle tonight.
Ky pulled his wallet from his jeans and laid a twenty on the bar to cover his tab. It would be a stiff tip, but he did not have time to wait for the change. Duty called, and he always picked up the phone to answer with an enthusiastic greeting.
Pushing through the door, his long strides took him across the pavement. The Florida air, hot and humid, clung to his skin in a fine sheen. A full moon cast its eerie light onto the loud night below. Music thumping through the walls of the bar and the buzz of passing traffic filled the night. Their brawl would not be heard, but if seen by human eyes, that would be a problem.
Ky worked for an agency that policed his kind, upholding its primary mission, take out those who would otherwise expose the breed. Agents like himself swooped in under cover, covertly took down the rogues, and left before anyone would be the wiser. They were more rumor than fact, ghosts whose identities were kept secret at all costs from both the humans and demons