About Bite the Hand that Feeds:
Vampiress Elaine Sullivan is keeping her head down, working as a barmaid and trying not to attract attention. Until, that is, she falls for a man who claims he can cure her vampirism. It's her only hope for survival and she grabs it. The trouble is: he lied.
'Bite The Hand That Feeds' is the follow-up to 'The Young Vampire's Survival Guide' and the second in the 'New Breed Vampires' book series. Written in British English, it can be read as a standalone novel. This new adult horror book contains bloody violence, swearing, lashings of vampires, paranormal strangeness, sex and other good times.
"Laney?" Tyler shouted.
I ignored him.
He repeated himself, louder this time. "'Laine? That creepy guy is here, staring at you again."
'My name is Elaine', I thought to myself. 'Not Laney. Not Ellie. Not 'Laine. It's Elaine, you sleazy twat.'
I was proud of myself for not going over to the manager - all shiny, slicked back hair and even shinier teeth - and punching him through the wall dividing the bar from the staff area.
Don't kill the management. After the incident at All Bar One, I even had it written on my hand for a time.
"Thanks for the heads-up, Tyler," I said out loud.
I was, and this is no joke, working as a waitress in a cocktail bar. I didn't have much choice. Career opportunities for vampires were quite limited.
I busied myself washing glasses behind the bar for a minute or two. Then curiosity overcame me, and I couldn't help but take a quick glance at the table 'creepy guy' usually occupied. There he sat, making patterns with a gnarled finger in the condensation around his pint glass. Fosters. Always the same drink. One pint of Fosters, half an hour of staring at me without speaking then he'd sneak away when my back was turned. Definitely odd, certainly creepy. If I hadn't been a vampire, his behaviour might have scared me. As it was, it was just annoying. Today, though, I'd had enough.
I knew I could cover the space between where I stood and his table far quicker than 'creepy guy' could react. Vampirism has its advantages. I would have done it, too, if the bar hadn't been filling up with the usual after-work crowd of media professionals, students, and locals wanting a cheeky drink before going home.
Instead, cleaning cloth in hand, I worked my way around the tables. I mopped spilled wine from one; picked a couple of empty glasses from another; flirted with a regular or two. I kept moving, inching closer to 'creepy guy', his face hidden by the dirty grey hood he seemed never to remove. Every time I took a peek, he was still running his finger in criss-cross formation across his beer glass. A thousand yard stare told me he was in his own world. Good. He wouldn't even see me coming.
Or so I thought.
"Hello, Elaine," he said. He hadn't even looked up from his drink.
I pushed a strand of lustrous black hair off my face and peered down at the guy. For the first time since he'd been coming into Apotheca, the cocktail place where I worked, I caught a glimpse of his face. Putting the empty glasses down, I gripped the table hard, causing part of his pint to spill. I tried not to stare. I failed.
Painful, un-healing sores and deep crevices covered every inch of what, on a normal man, would have been described as his skin. But he didn't have skin. Not really. Instead, it was like one of those 'Nightmare on Elm Street' Halloween masks. Most of the flesh was gone. What was left was cracked and raw.
I composed myself.
"Do I know you?" I said. I kept my voice casual sounding, but inside my heart beat in double time and the first beads of a nervous sweat formed under my hairline. Whatever this man was, he wasn't truly human. A vampire? I didn't think so. Like all of the new breed, I could smell vampires.
"Yes, Elaine, you know me."
His voice was parched and unrecognisable, like someone who had spent years chain smoking without stopping. He could have been twenty years old; he could have been two hundred. I couldn't tell.
"Sit." He indicated a spare chair with the same knotted finger he used on his glass.
I sat, arranging myself so that Tyler, the tiresome little jobsworth, didn't notice I wasn't, technically, working.
"Well?" I asked, "Who are you?" I leaned across the table to get as close as I could stand. I revealed my fangs, just for a brief moment. I figured it might intimidate him. It didn't.
My reward was a croaked laugh and an almost imperceptible shake of the head.
"Who I am doesn't matter, Elaine." The man paused and met my gaze. Something about his eyes was familiar to me. They shone with a life that belied the rest of his appearance.
"What matters," he continued, "is what is coming next."