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Paige sensed the moment she was no longer alone. She could also sense that the person coming up the street was not human. Paige kept her head down and her hands buried deep in the coat pockets. If she could sense him, he would be able to sense her.
She kept her steps the same. She didn’t speed up nor slow down, and neither did he. She clutched the dagger she kept in her pocket—it wouldn’t kill him but it would help give her time to get away. She could stab him and, while he was temporarily stunned, turn and run like Hell.
As he reached for her, Paige ducked her head and swept her foot out. This one was faster than the rest and managed to avoid her effort to trip him. He was also faster than she, because in the next instant, her arm was twisted painfully behind her back and she was slammed face-first into a brick building.
He used his legs to imprison Paige’s lower body while one hand held her arm in place. When she felt his other hand feeling down her leg, no doubt searching for weapons, she used her free elbow to try to strike a blow, but he immediately blocked it. He tightened his grip on her arm, and she had to bite her lip to keep from crying out.
“Stand still,” he demanded in a low voice.
He pocketed both her daggers from her jacket. And the long retractable knife from her boot.
Damn it. Those things were expensive. She had to get them back.
Paige found herself being turned around and pushed back into the wall by her shoulders. He started at her feet and took his time until he’d gazed at every inch of her. Paige hated the feelings he raised—the helplessness, the certainty he would take what he wanted just like all the others.
“Who are you?”
She didn’t answer but brought her knee up violently. He easily blocked it with his leg. It had been a stupid attempt, but she wouldn’t quietly give in—she would fight like she always did.
He shook her hard once before slamming her into the wall again.
Paige’s head snapped back and she bit her tongue.
Fuck! She so didn’t need this shit tonight.
She started to taste copper, and knew that if she could smell the blood, he certainly could. She had just a few minutes before he went into blood lust.
He smiled and Paige was shocked to see how handsome he was. She gave him the same thorough once-over he had just given her.
Handsome wasn’t the right word. Ruggedly beautiful fit him better. He stood over six feet tall to her average five six. He had dark hair and dark eyes, but it was his face... He was gorgeous. Strong jaw with just enough stubble to be sexy, his nose perfect, and his lips...full and plump. Just begging to be taken. Paige was sure he used his looks to his advantage in luring his prey.
But Paige wasn’t on the menu tonight. No pretty face would get her to let her guard down. Well, at least never again.
She may only be half as strong as the weakest vampire, but she had street smarts. She’d learnt to make it on her own and had for years now. This man...no, this monster would not end her.
There was no way to beat him. And now she was bleeding. It was already healing, but the damage had been done. She had to use her strong will and every dirty trick she knew if she wanted to get out alive.
As he leaned into her, Paige readied her hands to defend herself. Once again proving he was faster and more skilled than she, he didn’t give her a chance to do more. Paige found her arms up over her head as he pressed into her, holding both wrists in one hand. The warm, hard body that pressed into hers made her come instantly alive. She had known to expect the reaction but it still hit hard. Paige became light-headed and her knees went weak as he rubbed against her and nuzzled her neck.
“Young. Young and strong blood. Smells so sweet,” he murmured into her ear and she shivered. And it wasn’t all from fear.
He ran his mouth from her temple down her cheek, nipped her ear, and travelled down her jaw line.
Paige gasped out a breath, trying to fight the emotions he was bringing alive inside. It was a natural attraction she had to fight every day. But it had never been as hard as it was now.