In the end he begged to serve the demonic vampire who made him. Maximilian Wolffe was unwillingly turned vampire in 1570. A brutal master should always beware of what he creates.
He claimed her as his servitess. In 1872 Venice, Max and Claudio hunt the streets of Venice. What Max finds is not what he expects–a woman to equal his passion. He claims her and then one day, abandons her. To save her. The memory of his vampiress may be the only thing that saves him from the beast within.
And now he’s back to claim what is his.
Lena pulled back the black curtain and looked out the window. Torchlight illuminated what looked like a courtyard beyond the thorn-entwined wooden gate that was being raised by a couple of long-toothed, big furry beasts.
“I still can’t believe there are such creatures as werewolves. Over the years, you’ve certainly turned my belief system upside down, Max.”
“These wolves have been sentries of the land surrounding the castle for centuries. They have served the Conastrata descendants since the castle was built. And they keep the vampire hunters away. A very useful species.”
The horses’ hooves clattered over the cobblestones as they entered the courtyard.
“How old is this place?”
“It dates back to the fifteenth century, constructed in medieval times.”
“Kind of like you.”
She heard him chuckle. “Yes, I guess you might say that.”
Finally the carriage came to a halt in the courtyard. Max waved a hand, the door opened, and he stepped out and then he handed Lena out.
Tonight her gown was in shades of gold and black shot through with crimson thread, split at the front. Rubies had been sewn into the black overskirt. Red lace at the bodice barely concealed her dusky nipples. The caplet and underskirt were gold. Beneath the black silk corset and a multitude of black, gold, and crimson petticoats, she wore no undergarments, no bustle. And she felt decadently bare and wicked beneath the voluminous skirt and petticoats. Her thighs were slick with anticipation as the silk and lace rubbed against her skin.
“I need time alone with you, Max.”
A head taller than Lena, Max looked down at her as they awaited Claudio and Werner’s arrival.
“There’s no need for secrecy here, my dear. You may be quite shocked by the openness of the festivities. The body is to be admired and enjoyment of the flesh is to be openly worshiped.”
“You mean, there is no privacy?”
“As much as you would like, cara. Or as little. I have kept you rather sequestered since turning you. It all may be rather overwhelming for you at first.”
“I think I can handle it. I’ll just follow your lead, darling Max.”
Just then Claudio’s carriage clattered into the courtyard and came to a halt. Claudio stepped from the coach. The vampire was dressed quite elegantly in midnight blue velvet and silver. As he stepped down he tugged on a thick silver-colored chain.
Lena’s jaw dropped when she saw Werner. Oh, she’d seen him naked before, but never like this.
“He let you do that to him? It is Werner, isn’t it?”
“It is. He had no choice. He’s a servitor, he does as I say. As a human there are certain rules to follow. He has the smell of human. If he doesn’t want to end up in another vampire’s coffin, he’ll do exactly as I say. Isn’t that right, pet?”
Werner’s head was completely encased in some sort of black hood. Lena could see his eyes. And there seemed to be a slit for his nose, but there was a buttoned closing over his mouth. All he could do was nod in answer to Claudio’s inquiry.
The hem of the hood was attached by silver rings to a wide iron collar. There were strips of black leather crisscrossing his chest, and decorative chain hanging from a wide leather belt that seemed to serve little purpose. And more straps, with rolled leather edges, running up between his legs, displaying his softened penis.
Cuffs of iron encircled his wrists and ankles, and chain looped through them, soaring upward through the iron collar. The collar was decorated with slender, curved pieces of iron interlaced in a woven pattern. All of the chains seemed to come together culminating in the leash that Claudio held in his hand.
Lena was shocked to see a brand at the center of Werner’s chest that looked quite sore. “What is that? When did you do it?”
“My mark. I should have had him marked long before this, but since we haven’t attended any type of formal gathering, I didn’t think it necessary. Max and I have tended to circuit away from formal vampire affairs in the past. But nevertheless, the brand was accomplished last night. I have used herbs to cement it and help it to heal quickly. You will find all the servitors marked here. Servitors require a great deal of attention. You should think long and hard before deciding to acquire one.”
“As if I would.”
“You never know. One of these dedicants may just appeal to you.”
Lena slid a glance to Max. She couldn’t imagine doing to anyone what Claudio had obviously done to Werner. She glanced again at Werner.
Attired as he was, made him look…anonymous. The depilation was a surprise, but this was far more shocking. Anonymous was the only word she could think of. Indistinct. And yet—
She walked to Werner and reached out, then hesitated, first looking at Claudio. For the first time she found something intriguing about her husband. Was she changing that much in her tastes?
“May I?” Some undefined instinct made her ask permission to touch Werner. Even though technically the man was her husband. And he was a baron. Looking at him, one would never think of him as nobility in his present condition.
“Of course, my dear. What’s mine is yours.”
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