Albert Camus

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Excerpt and Giveaway Bad Blood by Nicky Peacock

Published May 10th, 2013


I am Britannia. I am your protector. I will fend off the hungry hordes of undead hands that reach toward you. I am your steadfast defender. I will stand between you and the zombie masses as they try to taste your flesh. I am strong, unyielding, and dedicated to your survival. All I ask from you… is your blood.

A five-hundred-year-old bloody game of vengeance will need to be put on hold if vampires are to survive the zombie uprising. Britannia and Nicholas, bitter enemies and the only two surviving vampires left in London,have to work together to save un-infected humans and deliver them safely to a vampire stronghold in the Scottish Highlands. Unable to drink the zombie"bad blood," the remaining vampires need the humans to stay alive.But will the vampires tell the survivors who they are and what they want from them? Will Britannia be able to hold back her vengeance for the greater good?Is survivor Josh the reincarnation of Britannia's murdered true love? And can she bring herself to deliver him to the "safe" hold?

Survival instincts run deep, but bad blood can run deeper.

EXCERPT: Chapter One

I repositioned myself so I could see down the edge of the building and into the dark alley below. The whole scenario was so cliché it made my butt pucker, but, hey, that was my life, one giant, shadowy cliché. Below, a damsel, clearly in distress, wearing a belt masquerading as a skirt, was being stalked by a newborn creature of the night. I could tell he was barely three months made; he wobbled around like a drunken uncle at a wedding. With his new heightened speed and strength, he'd gone from infant to superhero in one short, bloody step. It was a long time ago now, but I remembered what it was like: opening doors and pulling them off their hinges, throwing down innocent objects and embedding them ten inches into stone floors. You had to learn your motor skills all over again; the process was neither easy nor pretty.

The heels on the damsel's boots were far too high and made an incredibly irritating,hollow clicking as she quickened her pace. She must have sensed he was behind her, lurking in the shadows waiting to strike. Even if she hadn't seen him yet,she'd have sensed him. Prey, even ones who wear 'come eat me' outfits, almost always sense that a predator is near, especially when that predator is fumbling around like a new born fawn on an ice rink.

I waited for her to reach the edge of the alley before making my move. Dispatching perpetrators was difficult enough without adding in a witness intent on hugging and thanking me for saving her short, little, pointless life.

Although a lady never reveals her age, I was old enough that my every movement was fluid and precise. I'd done my time acting like the Hulk in a china shop. I'd been human for a little over nineteen years and a vampire for over four centuries. I found jumping off a building as easy as stepping off a kerb and, yeah, just as exciting.

A rush of updraft spread my long, electric-blue hair behind me like a set of soft dark angel wings flapping in my vigilant, peripheral vision. I landed square between the new vampire and his intended victim, who would now be able to continue her young life and perhaps grow up to buy a skirt that fell below the knee. I mean, come on, never mind decency, the British weather alone made her outfit an impractical age-defining choice. I felt cold just looking at her!

The vampire took one look at me and ran. He'd been warned; of course he'd been warned. He was one of Nicholas' brood. I was probably the first topic of conversation Nicholas had with any of his new little children: "If you see a blue-eyed, blue-haired, tall girl dressed in tight red jeans, a Sex Pistols T-shirt,and a blue biker jacket, run for the hills." That was exactly what the newbie did. He bit down on his pride, turned tail, and sped out of the alley. With the realisation I probably wouldn't make it back in time for Doctor Who, I sighed and followed him.

At night, the streets of London are dark and dingy. Due to the government's penny pinching, every second lamppost was off,leaving the city a hotbed of shady crime. Perfect for the likes of me, who didn't want average Joe to see her; also perfect for the likes of the newbie vamp who was now practically launching himself across each road in a desperate bid to control his movements and get the hell away from me. His limb-flailing became more Muppet-like as he proceeded, and I followed him easily enough. Of course he ran straight into another darkened alley, classic horror-victim mistake. If someone is chasing you, it's best to stick with the crowds; even I wouldn't kill someone when a horde of random strangers carrying mobile phones could be taking photos and uploading videos straight to YouTube. Said strangers wouldn't get involved and help, but they would gladly capture every gory moment for world titillation and their God-given right to five minutes of fame.

I smiled as I watched him catching his breath behind an industrial bin that, even from a distance, smelt like week-old Chinese food. Yes, we vampires do breathe when we're newbies, although it's more of a reflex than a necessity. Even now,I still find myself taking the odd breath in and out. It's a habit that's hard to break.

I leapt onto the top of the bin and leant down into the newbie's face. We're all exceptionally pale, but he went even paler when he saw me. His eyes had a kind of tiger-in-the-headlights glaze; predators never expect to be caught by other hunters.They're meant to be top of the food chain.

"You belong to Nicholas?" I asked. It's only polite to check your facts when you're looking to kill someone.

He paused and then shook his head. "No."

"Don't be like that.Tell me the truth."

I narrowed my eyes. He smelled like Nicholas, a scent that had wormed its way into my very being, as I,too, had once reluctantly belonged to him.

"Yes." He whined a little and averted his gaze.

Never underestimate instincts. You're born with them for a reason.

"Okay, then, let's get this over with quick."
I slipped down in front of him then punched him in the gut. He doubled over. I brought my knee square into his face; the momentum pushed him over onto the ground. I put my boot on his chest and held him down while I pulled out my trusty hand scythes.

"Please, I wasn't going to kill her."

About the author:
Nicky is an English author living in the UK. She writes both YA and adult horror and paranormal Romance. In her spare time she runs a local writers’ group and can be found online through the links below:

Author's Giveaway

Nicky is offering one eBook copy of Bad Blood in either: Mobi, Epub or PDF as a giveaway. She's based in the UK but this is open internationally. Bad Blood is written in English and set in England

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