Authors: Samantha Snow
A PARANORMAL VAMPIRE ROMANCE
©2016 by Samantha Snow
All rights reserved.
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About This Book
“What do you do if the only way to live is to die?”
When 29 year old Tara Cooper discovered she was terminally ill she refused to accept her fate. She felt that there must be a cure to her horrific disease.
She could become a vampire.
Handsome 800 years-old vampire Druian Kablarian had already taken a liking to Tara and he was willing to be the vampire to take her over to the dark side.
But only if she agreed to do something for him also....
This is an Adult Paranormal Vampire Romance featuring scenes of an adult nature. Please only read if 18+
Tara Cooper stood at the sterile, Formica countertop, cross-checking the labels on each tube of drawn blood with the corresponding doctor order forms. The process was one she repeated multiple times each shift, her penchant for preventing any mistakes with patient blood draws and lab tests was one of the reasons she was so good at her job, that and her ability to draw a patient’s blood quickly, efficiently, and nearly pain-free each time.
Tonight, though, her caution was necessary. She sucked air through clenched teeth, her hand automatically covering the area of her lower abdomen where it felt as if an invisible ice poker was being jabbed and jiggled into her pelvis. Tara was used to the pain, but this was the worst she had experienced. She tried to tell herself it was just another aggravating ovarian cyst, a growing and then dissipating little ball of pain that often made itself known.
But tonight, tonight the counter was holding her up, the fluorescent lights were too bright, and room fading in and out and the sharp and stabbing pain radiated. She squeezed her eyes shut, trying to regulate her breathing.
“Tara? Tara, are you OK?”
She could hear Cyndi, one of the head ER nurses and her best friend, come up behind her. Cyndi knew about her cysts and pelvic issues, she had seen Tara deal with them on more than one occasion. Cyndi was also used to Tara’s stubbornness when it came to pushing through the pain and trying to work regardless of how difficult it was for her to even stand up straight.
“Tara, I think…”
Cyndi tried to grab her friend as the tall, blonde woman’s body folded, and found herself only able to guide her to the floor and gently coax her head down to prevent any more damage.
“Someone help me!”
Cyndi screamed in panic as Tara’s unconscious body lay slumped on the ground of the phlebotomy lab. The benefit of working in a hospital was the response time. Two nurses appeared in the door way, Diane rushed forward to help Cyndi as Carol took off to find a gurney and more help. Cyndi automatically began taking her friend’s vitals, Diane helping to move Tara into a prone position.
The other nurses and one of the floor doctors came in. Together they lifted Tara onto the gurney and rushed her to triage. Cyndi tried to gather herself as she phoned in someone to take over the phlebotomy lab and check the staff on the emergency room department before hurrying off to find out what happened to Tara.
* * *
Tara blinked, confusion clouding her mind. The last thing she remembered was her familiar pelvic pain ratcheting up to a level she had never experienced before. The world had faded out and she could hear her friend calling to her from the other end of a long tunnel. But she wasn’t in the lab anymore. She stared at the ceiling from the flat of her back, in a bed in the hospital she worked in.
She looked around, her lab coat was on the back of a chair next to her bed, and an IV had been put in her right arm, an automatic blood pressure cup on her left arm. The machine with her vitals readout was showing her blood pressure and pulse were currently in range, if not a little on the low side.
She didn’t know how she had gotten here, the pain in her abdomen was a dull ache, and she attributed its lowered status to whatever they had injected into her line. Cyndi must have told them about the pelvic pain.
“Glad to see those deep blue’s open again.” Cyndi was smiling as she came toward the bed, but her eyes showed the fear and concern she was trying to hide.
“Am I admitted?” The humiliation of collapsing at work was beginning to dawn on her.
“Yes, for now. Diane drew some blood; Dr. Jameson is running some labs.”
“Why? It’s just cysts, you could have told them that.”
“Honey, ovarian cysts don’t make you hit the ground and don’t shoot your WBC’s through the roof.”
“My white blood count’s high?”
“Through the roof. And Jameson had an ultrasound done. The spots on your ovaries aren’t fluid filled, they’re solid masses.”
Tara stared at her friend, her thoughts racing. Elevated leukocytes, dense masses, weakness, possible anemia, swollen nodes, all of her symptoms began to build up in a mental chart. There was one thing that fit all of the symptoms, and she felt the world spin around her.
“Is it cancer? Cyndi?”
“We don’t know yet, Hon. They want you to get into a gown and they are sending you for a biopsy. If it is, they should be able to remove the ovary, but you know what that means.”
“I think the idea of having children any time soon went out the window with my marriage two years ago.”
“Yeah, I know, but you’re still young, you never know.”
“Well, if losing an ovary means the pain goes away and I don’t have cancer, I think the choice is clear.”
Cyndi nodded solemnly. She patted Tara’s hand before turning to the cabinet above the sink and pulling out a gown. She placed it on the end of the bed and then pushed the door the shut. Tara sat up slowly, still feeling dizzy and the pain medicine hindering her coordination.
Cyndi helped her undress. They could take off the BP cup, but the IV had to be gently coerced through the sleeve of her shirt and then back through the sleeve of the gown. Once Tara was officially in the garb of a patient, Cyndi gathered Tara’s clothing and shoes and put them in a drawstring plastic bag.
“So they are seriously admitting me? Why don’t they schedule the tests and have me come in later or let me stay a bit then go home? I don’t need to be taking up a bed in here.”
“Well, first of all, you know we can’t let you go home after having you collapse while working at the hospital. Workman’s comp and all that. Secondly, you are under 24 hour surveillance until they know the reason for what happened. And last of all, you’re not staying in the ER, you know how this works, hon, you’re going upstairs.”
“Ugh, damnit, Cyndi. This is really embarrassing.”
“Yeah, well, not as embarrassing as having a lab tech die due to lack of care in the very hospital she works in. So, sorry, dear, but upstairs you go.”
Tara groaned in frustration. One of the newer nurses Tara hadn’t met yet, came in and put her bag of belongings, including her purse, that Cyndi must have brought in from the lab, on the end of the bed as they prepped her to be moved. Tara started to feel the pain coming back, the growing sharpness plunging into her pelvis.
Cyndi watched her face and left, returning with another dose of pain medicine. As she injected the clear liquid into Tara’s IV line, Tara couldn’t find a reason to protest. The pain was rapidly growing. She let the warm fog roll over her as the medicine took effect, barely registering the movement of the nurses as they began pushing her bed into the hall and to the elevator.
The realization that they had her in a new room, that the nurses had left and she was now alone, the TV playing one of the true crime shows murmuring from somewhere on the wall in front of her bed, began to sink in.
The other cot was empty; she had the room to herself for now. Tara was happy for that, as the tears began to slide down her face. She imagined the lab forms, the checks in the boxes next to her white blood cell count and next to the coordinating tests for infection, cancer, as well as blood sugar, nutritional levels, and whatever else they tested her for.
She hadn’t been to a doctor about her ovary issues in a few years. The cysts were a common issue for her. For whatever reason, for years her body had a tendency to cause the painful little growths to pop up on her ovaries. The pain would come as they grew and then they would pop and the toxins would have her feeling ill for a few days, and then it was gone until next time.
But thinking back, this time had been different. It wasn’t a few days of growing pain; the pain had been steady and getting worse for a few weeks now. She would take pain meds when she got home and conk out, hoping she could make it through another day of work when she got up again. She knew something was up, something was wrong, and she was terrified of the reason..
Tara looked up as a commercial for the nightly news came on. More legislative news on the vampire situation, a robbery downtown had left two people dead, the weather was looking clear but chilly for the weekend, and some pretty vampire woman who looked to be in her mid-twenties was releasing a book on her friendship with a French aristocrat from the 1400s . Tara sighed. It must be nice, never having to worry about colds or cancer or pain, but the idea of watching all of your friends age, get sick, and die, didn’t seem like a very good trade off.
The vampires had “come out” several years before Tara was born. In her 29 years of life, she had watched the transition of people go through surprise and fear to fascination, segregation, and then acceptance, to some extent. The species had come out in the most intelligent fashion, all of them simultaneously on television interviews, books, YouTube videos, public gatherings, and in any other manner to prevent doubt or government interference, though the latter would occur regardless.
There was a period, shortly before Tara’s birth, which her mother would tell her about, giving better recollections than what school skimmed over. The government immediately went into “lab rat” mode, which led to protests, violence, and eventually the Vampire Rights Movement. This was followed by decrees deciding on how to register Vampires, laws applying to the species to prevent killing or involuntary feedings (now under the description of rape), and changes to accommodate them in various aspects of life.
Tara blinked away her inner ramblings as Cyndi walked in. She was still in her scrubs, which meant it was still night time or early morning. She had a coffee cup from one of the little cappuccino carts on the entry level of the hospitals main buildings. The one place you could get decent food, coffee, and little gifts for whatever poor hospitalized person you were visiting.
“Yeah, just thinking about anything to keep my sanity intact. Vampire legislation on the news tonight.”
“Well, that is an odd topic to be focusing on, giving the situation you are in. Don’t you go thinking about applying for registration! I don’t need to get old and ugly while you still strut around on those long stems of yours, tossing that mane of gold as I get grey and wrinkled and start shrinking.”
“No, I wasn’t thinking about that. Being forced to serve in the military for six years and having the government do crazy tests on me for the next decade is not my plan of a fun future.”
“No, that’s not as fun either.” Cyndi sat in the green padded chair next to Tara’s bed.
“What do you think it’s like? Never being sick or growing old, watching the world change and change and change again?”
“Probably sad and lonely. Of course, they do have to drink blood and stay out of the sun if they don’t want to feel 100 years old and sickly, so they aren’t completely free from illness.”
“Yeah, but so do we. I mean, if we don’t eat or get any nourishment and if someone with fair skin or intolerance to prolonged sun exposure when out in it too much.”
“Well, I suppose so.”
Cyndi sipped her coffee as they both watched the detective interviews on the television discuss the suspicions they had about the victim’s ex-husband. Tara opened her mouth to make a comment about her ex when Dr. Jameson walked in, his face pale and grim.
“New isn’t good, is it?” Tara tried to give him a weak smile.
“No, Tara, it’s not.” Dr. Jameson cleared his throat as he thumbed through the file, bracing himself and alerting Tara to the direness of the situation, “We’re going to do a biopsy around 2 PM today. Currently, though, with the blood lab results, and the abdominal scans, it seems that Ovarian Cancer is our culprit.
The problem is, I don’t think this is a new enemy for you, Tara. There are a few dark spots showing up in other areas of your abdomen and your white blood cell count is severely high, I believe the cancer has spread. We can try to remove what we can, but it might be too late for that.”
“So, what are we going to do? Am I going to have to do chemo?”
“Well, we still need to do some more testing and the biopsies, but it looks like it may be too late for that. I believe you are in the late stages of cancer, and there is a possibility it is now in your blood and possibly bones, we’re talking late stages here.”
“Am I going to die, Jameson?”
Dr. Jameson bit his lip, shook his head slightly before meeting her eyes.
“I’m sorry, Tara, we need better confirmation, but, yes, I think you are going to die.”
“A year at the most, depending on how far it’s spread, possibly as low as three months.”
Tara nodded, all other noise faded to a buzz. She felt Cyndi’s hand gripping her own, the tremors from her friend rattling her to the core. She was going to die, in less than a year. Tara swallowed hard, her thoughts breaking away into tiny shards as she tried to grasp the reality of the situation.
She wouldn’t have children, she probably wouldn’t even meet someone, and why would she want to now? She was going to die, alone and without anything to show for it. She still had 15 years or more on the job before retirement, she rented an apartment, she was divorced and single, and she had nothing to leave the world. Tara heard her friend’s sobs and absentmindedly patted her hand as Dr. Jameson nodded and backed out of the doorway.