Hoofin’ It to the Altar
Law and Supernatural Order
February 20, 2017
Deer shifter Jason Fleetfoot and vampire detective Drew Danvers have been together for a year. When Drew proposes, Jason is thrilled but shocked—vampires aren’t usually the marrying kind, even the few who side with the good guys.
As Jason and Drew fend off well-meaning friends and family, a far more serious problem threatens their union. A killer targeting vampires is on the loose. He effortlessly subdues his undead victims and finishes them off by literally curdling their blood. Drew has no idea what could kill a vampire so easily, and everyone suspects he’s next on the killer’s list. Drew must stop the killer in time for “Dearly Beloved,…” to start his wedding instead of his funeral.
I’m Jason Fleetfoot, deer shifter and crime-lab tech. I might look like a badass, but lately, I’m embarrassingly domesticated. I’m living like an old married man, with a vampire. That’s right, a vampire. Me and my man have settled down into a predictable routine just like boring human folk. A few months ago, I moved in with him. I work the night shift at the crime lab while he’s out chasing bad guys. Yeah, he’s a detective, a vamp who works for the good guys. After work, we come home and have dinner. Well, I do. He has me for dinner. Then we watch a little TV and tuck in for the night or, rather, day.
So what about the sex? Are vampires as good as they say?
Don’t look shocked, I know you’re interested. Drew is hotter than a solar flare. We’re both stronger and faster than humans and willing to try almost anything. We’ve damn near brought the building down a few times. I’ll leave it at that.
We’ve been together for a whole year, if you can believe it. Before I met Drew, if I fucked the same guy for a week, I started to get antsy. Now I’m in love. I’m man enough to admit it.
This badass stag shifter is all mushy-gushy, I-don’t-ever-want-to-leave-you in love. Problem is, love makes you dumb. Dumb enough to think a vampire would care about celebrating our anniversary.
I made reservations for us and kept them a secret until today when I surprised Drew with the plans. He seemed happy, if a little distracted. I thought he was into my idea even though we rarely go out. Stopping by our friend’s club, Shift, for a beer on our night off doesn’t really count, does it?
Drew doesn’t eat, but he likes to watch me when I order something special. I, on the other hand, love to eat. Sometimes I really get into my food, and Drew says I look like I’m about to come from the taste sensations. He likes that. A lot.
So I got all dressed up, well, all dressed up for me, which means a collared shirt and a coat with my jeans. I planned on a nice, civilized evening. But Drew said he had to run some errands after he got up at sunset. Now he’s a half hour late meeting me at the restaurant, and he’s not answering my texts.
My anger turns to fear as I think how unlike him it is to be late. He just closed a case involving a werewolf pack that was kidnapping young women. Supposedly the guilty parties are in jail, but what if they’ve found a way to get retribution?
And those wolves aren’t the only ones who’d like to see Drew permanently dead. Thanks to the news coverage of his kidnapping and forced Change at the hands of a vampire crime boss, and the city’s unlikely decision to let him keep his job with the police force, Drew is fairly well known. There are plenty of people out there, human and vampire, who don’t like the idea of a vampire cop.
I grab my phone to call him, but as I do, I see him walking through the door. He looks amazing. He’s wearing gray dress pants and a pale-blue shirt that’s straining across his broad chest. He even has on a tie, blood-red, of course. I guess he bought the outfit while he was out, because I’ve never seen any of those clothes in his closet. He smiles at the hostess, the smile that gets most female witnesses to tell him anything he needs to hear. It used to make me jealous when he looked at others, women or men, like that, but now I just smile and think how lucky I am to have him all to myself.
He catches sight of me, and his smile widens. Even after a year, I still get excited by that look. I’m so relieved he’s not decapitated in an alley somewhere that I can’t stay angry about his tardiness. He’s too damn charming in his suave clothes.
When the hostess walks away, Drew’s hot gaze pins me in place. “I’m sorry I’m late.”
“You didn’t answer my texts.” Shit! I sound like a nagging wife.
“First time you texted I was paying for something. Then I rushed home to change. I thought it would be better to get here as fast as I could rather than waste time texting you back.”
Logical, but annoying. “I was worried.”
Drew frowns. “Why?”
“Um, you’re a detective, remember? You chase bad guys who’d be happy to see you dead, and you just put some savage pieces of shit in jail.”
“Oh yeah.” He looks thoughtful.
“What’s wrong? Did something happen tonight?”
He shakes his head. “No, I’m just distracted.”
“Did Seth call? Did you get a new case?” Seth Morrison is Drew’s lieutenant and also a good friend.
“No. I’m fine; really.”
Our server approaches the table. Drew looks relieved that I can’t question him any more.
We place our drink orders—food is out for vamps, but they do drink—and I try to engage Drew in conversation, but he’s doing his cold, distant vamp routine, and it’s pissing me off. “If you didn’t want to go out, why the fuck didn’t you say so?”
The server times his reappearance perfectly to save Drew again. I wonder if he heard me, but I’m too angry to care about making a spectacle. Why is Drew acting like he’d rather be anywhere else?
After I order, the server turns to Drew expectantly. Drew gives him a smile that shows fang.
The server’s eyes widen, and he steps back. “So that will be all, then, gentlemen?” He nearly chokes on the last word.
“Yes, thank you,” I say. I glare at Drew. “What was that for?”
“I don’t want him hovering.”
“You don’t want him flirting.”
Drew attracts men and women without trying. I don’t know if it’s because he’s a vampire or just his natural magnetism. He usually finds several admirers wherever we go, but he’s more likely to scare them away than flirt back.
He smiles at me, and instead of looking disinterested like he did before, he looks turned on. What kind of game is he playing?
I scowl at him. “Did I get all excited about a big, juicy steak and tiramisu for dessert for nothing? If you want to play scary vamp and victim, we could’ve done that at home.”
Drew grins. “It’d be more fun here, though, wouldn’t it?”