Desires Unleashed is the first novel in the riveting,
highly-addictive and sexually-charged Knights of the Darkness Chronicles.
Experience the heart-pounding thrill of the chase in this electrifying
page-turner as you uncover the mystery behind the series of gruesome killings
that have been terrorizing the citizens of Chicago.
When a grisly decapitated corpse pops up on a Chicago Street,
drained of blood, the highly-trained, government-funded special police force
assigned two of their best detectives to the case. S.U.I.T. Detectives Warren
Davis and Matthew Eric delve deep into their investigation to discover just who
or what is leaving mutilated bodies
in public places. They soon realize that the killer or killers is one step
ahead of them and if they are going to stop the menace before another innocent
human is viciously attack, they are going to need help.
Natasha Hemingway liked her life just the way it was… normal
and supernatural-free. The vampires and shape-shifters were just where she
wanted them to be–far away from her. All was going well until an unfortunate
accident landed her in the hospital. It was then that she discovered she had an
ability that could help her save countless lives. All of a sudden, she finds herself
thrust into the dangerous and alluring world of the supernatural and into the
arms of two very sexy and deadly vampires.
Original, gritty and sprinkled with just the right amount of
humor and wit, the Knights of the Darkness Chronicles will suck you in and take
you for a ride you won’t forget. You don’t want to miss out on this amazing
Detective Warren Davis shuffled through the messy stack of files on his desk. He was searching desperately for his drawer key. He had hidden a box of Crunchy Crème glazed donuts inside and wanted to indulge selfishly in the delicious sugary taste of, in his opinion, “the best damn donuts to hit the 21st century.” Finally after turning his desk into a disaster area, which didn’t take much, he located the key to his treasure. He glanced inconspicuously over one shoulder then the other to make sure no one was watching. He knew how irresistible Crunchy Crème could be and he didn’t want to share one morsel. He slowly turned the key and unlocked the drawer.
There they lay, the sweets of gods. Warren didn’t know of a soul alive who could turn down a Crunchy Crème donut. Slowly, he opened the box, pulling one glazed donut from the container. He stuffed the sugary treat, in its entirety, into his mouth, taking pleasure in the gigantic burst of sweetness that followed.
“Mmm, delicious … There‘s got to be some smack in these donuts to have me so addicted,” he thought to himself as he closed the drawer and settled back in his cushioned leather chair. He stretched his long legs out in front of him as he chewed the donut slowly, savoring every bite.
“What are you eating?” his partner, Detective Matthew Eric, asked as he approached him.
He stood beside Warren’s relaxing figure, noting the huge bulges in the insides of his partner’s cheeks. Matthew Eric stood six-feet-three, very muscular and extremely handsome. His physique reminded Warren of a light-weight wrestler. Matthew’s skin was a perfect soft-golden shade which complemented his light-brown
eyes hidden behind the mop of dark brown curls. His hand came up brushing the curls from his eyes as
he studied Warren.
Warren remained silent as he swallowed, forcing one huge piece of donut down his throat then another. He was thankful for the time it gave him to think of a believable lie.
Matthew looked down at his partner, a smile spreading across his face as he watched Warren nearly choking to rid himself of the evidence. He waited patiently for the lie that would sure enough come spilling from those glaze covered lips. He thought Warren should know better than to open a box of Crunchy Crèmes, and think he wouldn’t have to share.
“Oh,” Warren managed to say, swallowing the last of his donut. “This? It’s nothing.” He followed up with a huge gulp of his decaffeinated coffee before smiling innocently up at his partner.
Matthew took one look at his partner’s full-of-crap expression and gave him one of his own. One that said he’d better share the goods, or else.
“What?” Warren asked, shrugging his shoulders.
“If you don’t cough it up, there’s going to be repercussions,” Matthew threatened playfully. “Are you sure?” Warren asked, smiling slyly.
“Un-hmm,” Matthew nodded.
“Okay.” Warren began coughing and gagging playfully, attempting to bring up what he had swallowed.
Matthew grimaced. “Oh God, man stop it. You’re fucking disgusting. Now, where’s the damn box?”
Warren laughed as he reached into his drawer pulling out his secret stash.
“I was going to give you some anyway,” he stated.
“Yeah, sure you were, ya bastard,” Matthew said, unconvinced.
He all but snatched a donut from the box then sat back in his chair devouring his treat. After a few minutes, he looked at Warren.,
“Remember when we first shared a box of these donuts?”
“Yeah,” Warren responded, remembering how Matthew had discovered his secret. “What made you think of that?”
“Don’t know, just nostalgia, I suppose,” Matthew replied. “I remember how freaked you were that day,” Warren said. “Who could blame me? I think I got over it well enough.” “Yeah, you did.”
As Matthew took another bite of his donut, he remembered their captain wanted to see the two of them in her office. Pronto. After he swallowed, he decided to inform his partner.
“Hey I forgot, the Captain wanted us in her office ASAP,” Matthew said calmly, as he munched on more of the donut.
“Oh really? Nothing good can come from that,” Warren said as he reached in his drawer for a third donut.
Officer Brown walked over—a tall, good looking black man, he was clean shaven, well built and the health conscious/athletic type. He wasn’t the kind of person to be caught dead stuffing his mouth with calorie-laden foods. He looked down at the two detectives and shook his head in dismay.
“Hey, the Captain is looking for you two. If I was you, I’d hustle in there, on the double,” he said, grimacing in disgust at the two men fattening themselves on the two-hundred-calories-per- serving donuts.
“Yeah, we know, we’re going now,” Matthew said, rising from his chair.
“Damn shame,” Officer Brown muttered as he walked away, leaving the two detectives to smile at each other.
They made their way to their captain’s office passing a few officers who were teasing them by making throat slitting motions. Everyone suspected the captain was going to have another difficult case for the two detectives to work on. They were right.
“What took you two so long to get in here?”
Captain Michelle Lawrence asked as she sat at her desk. The two detectives noticed that they didn’t get a glimpse of her long shapely legs which were hidden behind the desk. Warren suspected that she had been gawked at by one too many officers and managed to hide her assets. Her long blonde hair fell in waves past her shoulders onto her shirt front, denying them and all others a peek of her ‘famous cleavage’ that the majority of the male−and some female cops – admired.
“Well, you know, Detective Eric, I didn’t expect to be waiting this long when I called both of you in here about five minutes ago,” she said, both eyebrows raised, a finger lightly tapping the desk.
“Sorry, Captain, but Warren here, he was in the ‘little boy’s’ room,” Detective Eric fibbed quickly, not wanting to admit the real reason he postponed getting to her office, which was, he forgot.
“There’s nothing ‘little’ about my ‘boy’,” Warren retorted as he tried hard to force back the chuckles threatening to erupt at any second.
Captain Lawrence looked at the two men and shook her head.
“These two …” she thought to herself. Sometimes they worked her last good nerve, but she wouldn’t deny that they were her two best detectives.
“Look gentlemen, it’s time to get right down to business. We have a report of a body found in the alley off 79th and Cottage Grove Avenue. The preliminary report stated the body appeared to be drained of blood and the head was … well … missing. Furthermore, there are no witnesses. I’m assigning this case to you. It’s right up your alley. Galen’s on the scene already, waiting on you. Detectives Weinstein and Johnson are there right now, questioning the employee of a bakery store who discovered the body.”
“Now get the hell out of here.”
“Hey Captain, feel like cutting us some slack? We just got off doing the Joliet case.” Warren inquired, as he glanced at the little white sheet of paper with the location of the crime scene on it. “Why not let Weinstein and Johnson handle this one?”
“Oh gee, guys,” she shrugged, smiling, enjoying the moment. “I’d love to let you both sit back and eat your ‘donuts’ but this damn government insists I put you to work.”
She shrugged her shoulders as if to ask, “What can you do?”
“Besides, I want my best on this one. I have another case for Johnson and Weinstein.” “As you wish,” Warren commented.
He wasn’t very thrilled about having to undertake another case that looked to be more challenging than the last one he just wrapped up.
“You want a vacation, take the time. Until then, it is what it is. If only they’d put more than one division per state, I wouldn’t have to spread your asses so thin, but being as it is, get out there, make me proud.”
“Gee, Captain, you can spread my ass thin anytime,” Matthew joked, not really meaning a word he spoke.
Warren laughed, knowing the truth.
“Get out,” Captain Lawrence said flatly, fighting the urge to chuckle herself. The men gave each other a knowing look as they walked out of her office.
“Great, a body drained of blood and the head is missing. This has vampire written all over it. Damn, I’m hungry. How about later, we head over to Calvin’s for some ribs,” Warren suggested as he closed the office door behind them.
“That’s fine with me. I’ve got the nagging feeling this case is going to be a pain in the ass,” Matthew said as they grabbed their coats and headed for the parking lot.
“I’ll drive,” Warren said eagerly as he made a mad dash for the driver’s side of Matthew’s
“Like hell you will. You have a little too much of the speed demon in you. If you want to
drag race, then do it in your own shit, not mine. Now saddle your ass into the spectator’s seat,” Matthew said as he pushed his partner in the direction of the passenger side of his brand new Python Triton, one of the highly desired foreign cars from Asia that everyone was buying.
It was an economy car, great on gas and it looked like a sports car. Warren admired the car and mentally noted to put the automobile on his wish list for Christmas.
“You know,” Warren started as he looked around his partner’s new car, “you should give this car to me as a Christmas present.”
He smiled at his partner as he waited for an answer.
“Sure … if you give me your Diamondback SUV. You know that I love that truck.” “Point taken, now, let’s drop the subject,” Warren said, smiling slyly.
“Yeah, not willing to give up your ride, I see.” Matthew smiled broadly.
He had gotten the last word, which was hard to do with Warren. He reached for his emergency light and placed it on the top of the car, clicking on the portable siren as they sped through the morning rush hour traffic on the urban streets of Chicago.
“You know, it would be nice if the government increased the amount of officers on the S.U.I.T.” Warren said.
“That’d be the logical thing to do, but I don’t think they see the practicality in it. Plus, the training is hard as hell. I barely passed myself,” Matthew said, thinking back to the moments he was drafted into both the police force and the S.U.I.T.
Twelve years ago, when Matthew was twenty-one, and fresh out of college, he had joined the Police force. After being on the force for seven years, and already a seasoned detective, he was partnered up with Warren, who had been on the force for five years. They hit it off instantly and had been partners and friends ever since. They never dreamt they would become the first and only human defense against supernatural criminals.
When the supernatural race (the politically correct phrase) was exposed, the government was forced to create a nationwide policing unit to monitor and arrest certain individuals with supernatural abilities who broke the law. So they began by recruiting a hundred-thousand of the nation’s top cops and military personnel who were physically fit and mentally astute enough to begin the arduous training. They worked in paramilitary tactics, and with weaponry specially designed to deal with those who possessed supernatural abilities. The training had been created to improve motor skills and heighten senses of sight, smell, and hearing, which was extremely necessary to combat and apprehend the unique criminal element in the supernatural world.
Only five hundred out of the first hundred-thousand recruited made it through the demanding process, but more were needed. The call went out for more recruits which, in the end, gave the government the additional thousand officers needed to complete the fifteen-hundred- member armed force. There was another force of two thousand civilians assigned in certain fields, specializing in forensics, chemistry, character profiling, social behaviors, and weaponry. Because of their impeccable record of being among the best of the best on the police force, Warren and Matthew were drafted by the Superintendent of Police via the Mayor of Chicago for recruitment. Due to their unique partnership and their chief’s belief that it would be very beneficial to the local Supernatural Unit Investigation Team, they were reassigned as partners to the Chicago division.
“I’m glad you did pass it. I would have missed having you as a partner,” Warren said.
“You and me, both. We’re here. Would you look at this crowd?” Matthew said as he slowly drove closer to the scene.
The location of the crime scene was packed with onlookers. Uniformed officers worked to keep the crowd away from the scene. Cars were backed up for blocks as more and more police vehicles and media trucks pulled up. Matthew navigated his car through the helter-skelter of patrol cars, finally parking in a spot as close to the scene as he could get.
The two detectives emerged and made their way past the bevy of excited reporters and curious spectators. An ambitious reporter, desperate to get the scoop, cut in front of them as they tried to make their way to the crime scene. Before they could get one step further the reporter thrust a microphone in Warren’s face and began to bombard him with questions.
“Detective! Detective! Is it true that the body is headless? Do you think a supernatural did this?” asked the blonde, female reporter in the tight blue pantsuit as she struggled to keep pace with the two detectives’ long strides.
“No comment,” Warren said as they approached the uniformed officer guarding the crime scene.
The answer given didn’t seem to satisfy the pushy reporter as she continued to ask the same questions in a different manner.
“Detectives, are you from the S.U.I.T. precinct? If you are, then this must have been a supernatural killing, right? What kind of supernatural did this? Was it a vampire or a shape shifter?” she asked in succession.
The two detectives ignored the line of questioning, continuing on to the yellow and black police tape blocking off the crime scene. Both men ducked under the tape in unison and continued making their way to the two detectives who were waiting for them to take over.
“Hey, Barry, look who’s graced us with their presence. If it isn’t the ‘Dynamic Duo’,” Detective Gabriel Johnson joked to his partner Barry Weinstein who was kneeling by the body.
“Heya boys,” he greeted the approaching officers.
Barry straightened himself and made his way toward his partner.
“Warren… Matthew,” Barry said, giving a little ‘hello’ nod to the two detectives.
“Gabe and I were the first on the scene. The guy who discovered the body is over there away from the media sharks.”
He pointed to a twenty-something year old black male, standing against the side of a building.
“You know how hungry the media is for a story when they get a whiff of fresh blood,” he joked.
All four detectives chuckled, nodding in agreement.
“Yeah, but the guy won’t be able to tell you much. He was dumping the trash that should have been dumped the night before, when he came across the body. He said, ‘he saw the legs sticking out from behind the dumpster and knew something wasn’t right.’ That’s when he called the police, who called us in. That’s about it,” Gabriel said.
“Captain must really like you two. She gives you guys all the coveted cases,” Barry teased.
Secretly, he was upset about being removed from this case, but was trying to keep it professional. He knew his partner felt the same way.
“Yeah, remind me to send her one of those famous Anisi gift baskets as a ‘Thank You’,” Matthew retorted.
“Well, as much as we would like to stay here and chit-chat with the two of you, we’ve just received a call. Captain wants us. Maybe she’ll bestow upon us the same generosity she’s shown you two,” Gabriel said.
“Ha! Don’t bet on it. She wants the two of us, ‘cause we’re hot,” Warren joked. “Yeah, I heard she likes guys with young, firm balls,” Matthew added.
“Exactly. Not old shriveled, wrinkled balls like yours, so you’re both out of luck,” Warren finished.
“Well, I guess I have to settle for your mother then, hey Matthew?” Gabriel shot back, smiling slyly.
“Shit, be my guest! If she has a little Romeo on the side, maybe she’ll stop bugging me about making her a grandmother,” Matthew joked, causing the four detectives to laugh.
Gabriel and Barry said their “goodbyes”, wrapping up their friendly banter and began walking toward their unmarked police cruiser as Warren and Matthew headed toward the body.
Matthew and Warren looked at the sheet-covered body which lay partially behind a dumpster in alley of the Dark Night Travel Agency, a well-known agency that catered to the
supernatural. After the supernatural race was exposed, all types of businesses saw it as another way to make a profit. This particular agency helped vampires travel during the day.
Both detectives stood over the corpse. They noted the small drops of blood spotting the sheet where the head should have been. Matthew squatted down beside the corpse, lifting the sheet to peek under. It looked to be the body of a black male and, on a closer inspection, he appeared to be middle-aged. Matthew threw a glance at Warren who seemed to be having a dilemma of his own. Matthew noticed Warren’s breathing had increased and his jaw muscles had tightened. He also saw tiny beads of sweat forming on Warren’s forehead.
“Hey, keep it together, man. You don’t want to attract attention to yourself,” Matthew encouraged his partner in a hushed voice.
“I’ll be all right. Don’t worry about me,” Warren said, hoping to ease his partner’s concern.
Matthew returned his attention back to the corpse before him, but in the recesses of his mind, he began to think back to the time when he’d first discovered Warren’s supernatural secret nearly three years ago. They’d been on a stakeout, tracking down a child molester, who would strangle his adolescent victims, dress them up as life-sized dolls, and rape their corpses.
The stakeout had gone wrong when their suspect noticed their plain, black van parked across the street from his house. Matthew and Warren had hated the idea of trying to be “inconspicuous” using the van, but they’d had no other choice. They had been sitting in the van for eight hours on the third day, their butt-cheeks had gone numb and the Crunchy Crème donuts they had eaten earlier had left their bellies begging for refueling. It was at that moment when the nut came bursting through the front door of his house blasting his twelve gauge shotgun at their van.
Matthew would have caught a buckshot blast straight to the head had Warren not thrown himself in front of the shot, taking the injury in his upper right shoulder. Never losing their composure, they returned fire and took down their suspect. After disarming the man and confirming his death, Matthew returned to the van to check on Warren, the partner he trusted and now owed his life to.
Warren had covered his wound with his jacket, not wanting to let Matthew see it. He insisted that it was just a flesh wound and nothing to worry about. But Matthew, ignoring Warren’s protests, struggled to apply pressure to stop the bleeding. He remembered trying to snatch the jacket away from Warren who seemed to be behaving as children sometimes do, hiding their wounds from their mothers so that they won’t go dabbing alcohol into the wound. He joked with Warren, in hopes to diffuse the situation and keep Warren calm by telling him not to worry, he promised it wouldn’t sting. Warren however, was adamant about keeping the wound hidden until Matthew pulled at the jacket with all his might. Warren had finally relented, exposing a partially healed wound. Matthew watched in amazement as the wound continued to heal. He watched as the torn muscles began to reattach themselves. He looked on in awe and disbelief as the skin reformed over the opening the buckshot had left, leaving nothing but the blood around the area where the wound had been. He was speechless. He remembered looking to Warren for an explanation.
Matthew listened as Warren, his partner of nearly two years, confessed that he was a werewolf. Warren had decided to use the mortal terminology for his species. Shape-shifters, like himself, never used terms like ‘werewolf’ or ‘werecheetah’. He didn’t like having his secret out, knowing full well that the laws were extremely biased when it came to his kind, even if he was a cop. Even if his intentions were good, he would be fired and probably prosecuted for lying and falsifying information during exams and testing. The human race didn’t trust those of the
supernatural race. “Birds of a feather,” he supposed. He had trusted his partner enough to give Matthew the choice of keeping his secret or revealing it. In the beginning, Matthew had felt leery about such a revelation. He wasn’t sure how he felt about having a flesh-eating beast as his partner.
In the end, Matthew believed he knew his partner well enough to know that he would never eat him … he hoped. He decided to keep the secret and their bond became even stronger. It wasn’t until after Matthew knew the truth about Warren that he started to understand his strange behavior of the past; such as the constant eating of high-fat, high-protein foods. He had never seen anyone who could put away two twenty-ounce porterhouse steaks the way Warren could and this was including the side dishes. He also began to recognize the look of bloodlust in Warren’s gray eyes whenever they went to a bloody crime scene. He wondered how the hell it slipped his radar in the first damn place. He was amazed at how well Warren could endure the strong scent and sight of blood and flesh at crime scenes. He had chalked it up to Warren’s own high level of personal discipline, determination and dedication to the job.
Matthew remembered the times when Warren had broken the handle of his car door not once, but twice trying to hop out of the car in a rush. He also remembered the time they had to chase down a suspect. He had decided to cut the suspect off in the car while Warren took to chasing the perpetrator on foot. He found it amazing when Warren had beaten him to the punch and had the suspect apprehended. Now that he knew the truth, all the pieces that hadn’t made sense in the past fell into place.
Now, as Matthew looked at Warren again, he could tell by the way his partner’s breathing was returning to normal that he had gotten control over his bloodlust and hunger and was ready to get his mind on the job at hand. Matthew reached into his right breast pocket, producing a retractable metal rod that he used to further examine the corpse without actually touching the body. A uniformed officer walked over to them, giving them each a pair of latex gloves. Matthew put on his gloves without hesitation. Warren always hated wearing the gloves. The scent from the latex and the powdered substance inside the gloves always agitated the sensory glands of his nose and mouth. Nevertheless, he slowly slid his hands into the gloves.
“Hey, look at this here, come closer,” Matthew said inquisitively as he gestured for his partner to take a closer look.
As both men peered into the gaping hole where the victim’s head used to be, Warren’s breathing began to increase, but he kept his mind focused. He looked at the broken spinal cord, the torn muscles and sinew left behind. The remaining flesh looked jagged as though the head had been ripped away from the body.
They gave each other a guarded look. The conclusion was not one they wanted to embrace, but the evidence left them with no other choice. Whatever it was they were dealing with was strong … and vicious. That was never a good combination. So far, they had been lucky. The last case they were on had been the most grueling case since they joined the new division or rather, were “appointed” to the new division. They’d had to track down a werewolf in Joliet, Illinois.
The werewolf had run amok in the suburban neighborhoods, killing and mutilating four people. They had cornered the him on a farm right outside Joliet, after he had slaughtered two cows. The family had heard the ruckus and alerted the local police, who notified the S.U.I.T. authorities. The suspect was not willing to negotiate, so they had to take him down. At that point, Matthew had been more than happy that his partner was a supernatural. They would not have survived otherwise.
“It looks as though the fucking head was snatched off,” Matthew said coming back to the present situation as he inspected more of the corpse.
He noticed that the body was fully clothed. Relief spread through his mind that if there was anything else to find, it would be Marshall Galen’s job, as medical examiner, to find it. As soon as that thought came into this head, so did the dread that whatever Marshall found would just add more drama to an already dramatic case.
“Yeah, that’s what it looks like. The spinal cord was snapped like a twig. The flesh of the neck is all torn at the edges. See look here,” Warren pointed and made a circular motion around the neck area. “Looks a little stretched, doesn’t it? Like someone or something pulled and pulled until the skin and everything in between gave way. They could have done it in a fast motion but I think … at least I feel in my gut … that this killer wanted to feel and savor the sensation of slowly ripping off someone’s head.”
Warren rose quickly, shaking his head from side to side as he walked a few paces away from the corpse.
He had to regain his composure. The thought of someone so sick and twisted that they would derive pleasure out of such a macabre act of violence disgusted him. What unnerved him most was that the remains of that violent act made him want to get down on all fours, crawl over to the headless corpse and pig out like ninety-going-north. Matthew looked at him. He knew how hard it was for Warren; he knew his secret.
“Hey, Detective Davis, you ain’t gonna puke, are you?” A uniformed officer called out as he noticed Warren with his back turned toward the corpse. “Aww, don’t tell me a little blood gets you two boys all green.”
“Fuck you, rookie,” Matthew shot back in their defense. “Don’t you have some tickets to write?”
He took the gloves off, tossing them in the portable disposal unit the officer was holding. He walked to his partner, patting him on the shoulder.
“Are you okay?” Warren nodded.
“Good. Are you ready to talk to the one lead we have?” Matthew asked.
Warren took a deep breath. He looked at Matthew and nodded. In retrospect, Warren was relieved he had confided in his partner when he did. He trusted in their relationship enough now to let it all hang out. Matthew knew his friend’s “condition” even though it still shook him up, especially when Warren became glassy-eyed over spilt blood. Warren wished he had the control of the older ones; the pride of the Pack, those who could walk into a slaughterhouse and never even blink. He marveled at the amount of self-control one must have to resist such a temptation. He admired his Pack leader, Xander, for his superior self-control. However, Alexander, known affectionately as Xander, treated his Pack with that same amount of control which sometimes got on Warren’s nerves. By the same token, Xander was equally protective of the Pack; Warren respected and loved him for that.
Xander never really approved of Warren’s choice to join the Police Force. He was true to the traditional ways; old traditions had wisdom. In Xander’s opinion, it just wasn’t wise to take up a profession that might expose your secret. Being a police officer was high on his ‘hell no’ list. Although, Xander did acknowledged the benefits one could gain from working within and beside the law. He wasn’t blind to that fact, but he feared Warren would be exposed, then hunted down because of what he was. Xander would not stand for that. Warren remembered the heated argument he’d had with Xander when he informed him that his secret had been exposed to his
partner. Xander had threatened to kill Matthew, said he knew too much, but Warren had convinced him that this exposure was a move in the right direction.
Xander had scoffed at that statement. It didn’t ease his suspicions or his thoughts of killing all who knew about them. It was one thing for the whole supernatural race’s existence to be exposed. It was another to announce yourself as one. Because of that, Xander kept a close eye on Warren, the orphaned son of his Pack mates.
Warren’s mother and father had been murdered by a renegade group of deranged mortals. They shot both of his parents, piercing their brains with silver bullets while they were tending to their farm. Warren had barely escaped with his life. He ran into the woods, staying hidden until nightfall. Then he had gone to the one place his parents told him would be safe if anything ever went wrong. He ended up on Xander’s doorstep in the middle of the night, a scared six-year-old boy. Xander had taken Warren under his wing and raised him as his own. Warren was brought up in the traditional ways of the Pack. Despite all of Xander’s teachings, Warren had embraced the “mortal” lifestyle, including his career choice. Ever since his parents were murdered in front of him as a child, he had wanted to be a cop so that he could catch the bad guys.
Warren thought Xander should loosen up a bit. He knew that due to Xander’s old age, change was always difficult, especially after having lived for over two centuries. His Pack Alpha was pretty much hell-bent on keeping with tradition and was most reluctant to change the old ways.
Warren was silently thankful to Xander for allowing him, however reluctantly, to work with
S.U.I.T. While walking toward the one lead they had in their current case, knowing he wouldn’t get much from him, Warren reminisced on the day, long past, when he had been at home watching TV and his favorite family cartoon show had been interrupted for a special news bulletin. He remembered thinking it better be pretty fucking important to interrupt, “The Samsons”. He’d sat there and watched history in the making as the report commenced to prove supernatural existence beyond what the human mind could comprehend. It was all over the radio and had even worked its way into the cable network channels. So even if people were watching QueerPeople, they were going to know the news.
Warren watched, along with billions of people worldwide, as the supernatural world was exposed for all to see, for all to know. An overambitious reporter had scooped the story of a lifetime, revealing a corrupt politician who had been bitten and turned by a tiger. He was among several other politicians who were secretly keeping an abandoned military base in Death Valley. They’d had the hidden facility specially designed to perform experiments on vampires and shape- shifters and study the results. His mouth had dropped open as he’d watched that report. He’d felt grateful that he had been skilled enough at deceiving the mortals about his true identity thus far. He had learned how to control his hungers and lust, well enough to remain unnoticed, and unchallenged (outside of Matthew).
Xander had resented everything about the outing. It angered him that shape-shifters were tortured and killed at the military base. He had known that mortals would react badly after finding out.
“Mortals always hunt down and destroy what they can’t control, or understand, or what they fear,” Xander had said as he made numerous phone calls to other Pack leaders arranging an emergency meeting.
Xander had been right. In the months that followed, after the humans got over the shock of supernatural beings existing in their world, mass paranoia began. People had begun to panic and
there had been pure chaos. Humans started looking over their shoulders; people started killing each other over the slightest suspicion.
Warren remembered getting a call from a hysterical woman who said her husband had just shot and killed their neighbor with a sniper rifle. Her husband was convinced their neighbor was a vampire because he only saw him up and about at night. Turns out the now dead neighbor liked to take nightly walks because he suffered from insomnia. The madness didn’t stop there. The crime rate increased; it was the highest in years. The ironic part of it was it wasn’t the supernatural creatures that were committing the crimes, but the human race itself killing other humans as well as supernaturals.
It was not until some bills were passed a year later that the madness subsided. Angry and fed up family members were tired of fighting for their lives and the lives of their loved ones who had been turned. Those people made their voices heard loud and clear and the government had to acknowledge that the worldwide, fear-induced bloodshed had to be dealt with and fast. Martial law was enforced, giving the government time to think of a plan.
Some supernaturals, fearing they would be hunted down and slain, decided to form a Council in an attempt to gain positive exposure and establish themselves among the humans. They joined with the American government to share information and develop laws equal to those the human race already enjoyed. The human race was trying to restore order from the madness they had caused. They were trying to get control over what they could not comprehend. Many supernaturals believed that the human race was foolish and vain to think that they could be the overlords of all the supernaturals’ power and wisdom. The humans had been underestimated. America was the first country to form the “Laws of Co-existence” with the supernaturals successfully. Most of Europe followed, then Canada and Asia, making the “Laws of Co- existence” partially international.
The first bill that was passed into law clearly stated supernatural creatures were now required to obey the same laws as every mortal. If they committed a murder, they were arrested and were to have their day in court. If a supernatural was suspected of a crime, and if they turned themselves in willingly, they would await their trial date for up to a period of seven days. They would then be tried by a mixed jury of humans and supernaturals (shape-shifters only), and if found innocent, they were set free but monitored … if found guilty, they were to be executed immediately. However, if a supernatural refused to be taken into custody, they were executed on the spot. Due to their supernatural abilities, their right to “Due Process” was not equal to that of humans.
Law number two was more for vampires than shape-shifters. No drinking from mortals who were not willing. It was understood that a bite from a vampire was equivalent to sex for a human. You could not arrest and charge two adults for having consensual sex; therefore, you could not charge a vampire for getting “bloody” with someone who consented to the bloodletting. However, the union could not be fatal; it also had to be with an adult. Anyone under the tender age of eighteen was jailbait and anyone who did not consent was considered raped. In addition to this law, the willing conversion of a mortal was prohibited. It was considered suicide if a mortal consented to conversion. Of course, vampires didn’t really adhere to this portion of the law.
The vampires had taken to that law rather harshly. Some of the young ones retaliated. They had no idea what humans had in store for them. If found in the act of “raping,” “murdering” or “child molesting,” if that supernatural couldn’t be apprehended in a “peaceful” manner, they were to be shot and killed on the spot. This was stated in the news bulletin when they announced the new laws. What they didn’t say was that they had gathered a great deal of information on the
supernaturals, due in part to all the materials and documentation gathered from the secret facility in Death Valley. For instance, a trained mortal knew what to look for in appearance, physical attributes, etc. The government was better prepared and was well-equipped to deal with the supernaturals. The S.U.I.T. Organization was armed with ultraviolet gel ammunition for the bloodsucking undead and liquid silver-nitrate bullets for shape-shifters. These specially designed bullets would explode upon impact and work their way through the blood stream, making it virtually impossible for any to survive. Regular silver bullets hurt and took longer to heal, but didn’t kill the shifter unless they struck in a vital area. Any liquid silver entering the blood stream meant an inevitable death.
Warren wondered if Xander would be able to survive a vital hit from a regular silver bullet. He suspected that because of his age he may be able to heal, if he drank the blood of the Pack Matron. However, he doubted Xander would be able to survive being shot by a liquid silver- nitrate bullet. The humans had been prepared. After a few vampires who were in violation of law number two were made examples of, the vampires were “less inclined to exhibit any rash behavior.” Or so that’s what the Secretary of State said during his speech when he announced the decrease in supernatural crime. Warren had to admit the thought of a combustible silver-nitrate bullet going through his chest would make him feel a little more law abiding. His other Pack mates had been outraged, feeling helpless against the change. Warren wondered in amazement if this was the first time the supernatural race felt truly vulnerable. He suspected Xander wasn’t worried, but cautious … always cautious.
Law number three was pretty much directed at shape-shifters. Shape-shifters were to go to a government protected and sanctioned hunting ground on the nights when there would be a full moon. Some of the Pack leaders had disputed this bill. Many said they had their own private property, and would not take too kindly to being monitored while they changed, mated and hunted. After three months of deliberation, the government relented, only to revise the bill. The revised bill now stated if one did not have a “designated” hunting ground, you were required to go to a government sanctioned one provided in each state. Once finalized, there were no exceptions to this law. If found off hunting grounds, the shape-shifter would be contained, charged, most likely deemed dangerous, then executed.
In the beginning, there were a lot of unexplained “accidents” when a supernatural was taken into custody for suspicion of committing a crime. They were often tortured or murdered by spiteful officers wanting revenge. It was during this time the supernaturals protested while their council spoke out against the cruel and illegal tactics of the government’s supernatural police force. The entire S.U.I.T. organization went under investigation. The offending officers were arrested and sentenced.
The last bill to be added became law number four to establish equal protection for supernaturals. For there were individuals and radical humanist groups who decided to turn their Thursday night poker club into outlandish cults that would chase down members of the supernatural race to destroy what they could, by maiming and killing whomever they could find. This new law, which was much needed, prohibited any type of vigilante acts of violence upon a member of the supernatural race. Many outraged groups felt that the human race should not have to share the world with “freaks”. They vowed to continue their “fight against the forsaken,” as they called it. Warren had arrested a few of these fanatics, satisfied to have finally rid the streets of them. Though he knew where there was one, there were several thousand. However, there were enough intelligent civilians, including politicians, who knew that to start a war with the supernaturals would incite the destruction of the human race. These individuals lobbied
ceaselessly to pass law number four; they knew that the government had to offer protection to the supernaturals in order to guarantee protection for human existence.
The laws left little room for mischief and seemed to keep things under control. Supernaturals were U.S. citizens rightfully. All of humanity now knew they could not destroy the supernatural race; some humans didn’t want to destroy supernaturals at all. Many historians were baffled and marveled at the whole idea of immortal creatures; beings that have seen empires rise and fall, wars begun and ended. They knew who shot two of America’s most famous presidents. They knew what it was like to watch Rome burn and hear the psychotic tunes from the Emperor’s fiddle. Then there was the medical scientist who wanted blood samples, urine samples, sperm and egg samples. They wanted to know what was in the supernaturals blood that was different from their own, and how to make that blood work for them.
Many other businesses including restaurants, bars, clubs, stores, and airports opened their markets to the supernaturals. However, there were some businesses that reinstated the segregation law, barring supernaturals from “human only” establishments. Even though mankind was learning to co-exist, the two races were far from equal in all that the world had to offer. There were other bills being brought before the legislature that wanted to incorporate supernatural studies in schools as well as cultural awareness courses. This caused great debates within the ranks and the bills had yet to be voted on.
I’m going to preface this review and say that I did like Desires Unleashed as a whole. But there were parts of it that I didn’t like. So here is my list of what I liked and didn’t like:
Liked: Annette and Natasha. Fiesty, smart and come on, Annette was a Southern Belle stripper. Loved her.
Liked: Setting…I have relatives in Chicago. Chicago is one of all time favorite cities in the US and I love the gritty undertone of the story. I could totally picture an Urban Chicago without any problems. Makes me want to book a ticket to visit very soon.
Liked: Warren and Matthew. Yes, the cops in this book. *sigh* Even though they were gay/bisexual. I enjoyed their banter, tension and friendship. Matthew didn’t judge Warren and Warren gave up the donuts when needed.
Liked: The world that she built. Interesting, gritty, urbane and dark. Her take on the paranormal world was unique and fascinating. Her vamps didn’t sparkle, the weres were ordinary people (no mega Alpha males) and the humans weren’t dumbed down.
Disliked: I felt like the book was just a prequel to the other 4 books in the series. For this reader, there were too many characters to keep up with and their story. I was confused a lot of the time.
Disliked: Darian…read the book and you will understand.
Disliked: Elise and Sergio. I never felt a connection with them at all.
Overall: I truly liked the book but it left me more confused than satisfied. The coexistence of the supernatural world and the human world was excellent. Laws were there and enforced for both worlds. And yes, I truly believe that humans as a whole are a scared bunch. If you are looking for hot sex, you won’t find it here. But what you will find is m/m, bi-sexuality and moresomes. Its not overly graphic but its there; hence my rating of erotic.
Desires Unleashed Excerpt:
“Shhhh, quiet. You’ll die tonight, but you die as the chosen. Fear not, you are lucky to die by a vampire’s kiss,” he whispered into Anthony’s ear, repeating his most clichéd vampire quote.
He began enforcing his silent command-coaxing Anthony to remain calm. Once Xavier felt the other man’s muscles relax, he leaned closer to the pulsating artery underneath the smooth, soft skin of Anthony’s neck. Xavier’s mouth opened, fangs extending for the feeding. Anthony gasped, his back arching as Xavier’s fangs broke through his skin. Xavier began to feed; audible sucking noises filled the room, adding to the sexual atmosphere. Low moans were coming from the two men, both enwrapped in
pleasure, sharing this special union. Darian watched closely. He enjoyed watching the “vampire’s kiss” in motion. He delighted in watching other people enjoying pleasure in all forms, even if it was their last time.
Anthony let out a long shivering moan. His body twitched once, then twice, falling limp as Xavier continued to feed, draining the body completely. He savored the warm, delicious, thick fluid as it filled
his mouth, flowing down his throat. He could not, would not give this sensation up for anything in the world. He tilted his head slightly, widening his mouth to capture more of the blood that warmed him. It
excited him; he could feel the warmth spread throughout his limbs. His body tingled as though little electric shocks where bursting over him. He had grown hard during the feeding, as all vampires did, and he felt his passions rise to the crest.
Xavier was disappointed when the blood stopped flowing as he was enjoying his feast. He pulled away, letting Anthony’s corpse slip from his hands. The world seemed to disappear as he relished the sensation the blood was giving him. He sat there, head leaned back, eyes closed, full-shaped lips slightly parted as he ran his hands down the length of his torso, past his stomach, to caress his aching groin. His body twitched as he massaged his penis relieving some of the pressure. Darian smiled, waving John out
of his office. John nodded and scooped up Anthony’s corpse, throwing the body over his shoulder before exiting the room.
Darian walked up to Xavier, peered into his gray eyes and smiled. He squatted beside his lover, arms encircling the other man’s chest. He held him against his torso with one arm, while his right hand slid up Xavier’s chest to caress his throat. He grabbed Xavier’s chin, held his face up to his. Darian’s tongue darted out licking the spilt blood from Xavier’s lips. Their tongues met in a passionate kiss. A low groan escaped from Xavier as Darian began to caress him. He slid a hand inside his shirt, fingers seeking the firm nipples and gently rolled the delicate flesh between his fingertips, sending shivers through Xavier’s body. Darian’s other hand slid further down to caress Xavier’s crotch, massaging the hardness through the denim material. Ragged, panting moans filled the room as Xavier began to feel his climax. All sensations stopped when Darian released him and rose from the floor.
Confused and disappointed, Xavier looked up, a questioning look on his face. “Why stop?”
Smiling wickedly, Darian leaned close to Xavier’s ear and whispered.
“An eye for an eye, my beautiful inamorato. Tomorrow night, we’ll share each other’s passions, but not until then.”
He walked out of the room, leaving Xavier completely unsatisfied.
Payback can sure be a bitch. Xavier thought as he remembered interrupting Darian’s seduction of Annette earlier.
D. N. Simmons lives in Chicago IL., with a rambunctious German Shepherd
that’s too big for his own good and mischievous kitten that she
affectionately call “Itty-bitty” Her hobbies include rollerblading,
billards, bowling, reading, watching television and going to the movies.
She has been voted “Rising Star” and nominated at Love Romances and More,
winning honorable mention for best paranormal book of 2006. She has won
“Author of the Month” at Warrior of Words. She was voted “New Voice of
Today” at Romance Reviews.
To learn more, and have the opportunity to speak with the author
personally, please visit the official website and forum at dnsimmons.com .
D.N. is always interesting in meeting new and wonderful people.
- Website http://www.dnsimmons.com
- Youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mu3yBn5HoNM&context=C4690017ADvjVQa1PpcFP3d927Nqnw0bi%20GGRU000OHbCoS-3qN6Jo=
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