Excerpt: Chapter One
Sometimes, you simply must punch a shape-shifting vampire Nazi.
Like tonight, for instance.
I stroll through New York’s Central Park. Ahead of me, there strides a guy in a chicken costume. I’m talking yellow feathers, plumed tail, the whole smash. A sash extends from his shoulder to his hip that reads Eat At Cluck Town. This fellow is anything but normal, and not for the obvious wardrobe reasons.
He’s actually a vampire.
Even worse, he’s an audax, which is a shape-shifting vampire Nazi. All audax started off as German soldiers in World War II. During a raid, they entered the magical city of El Dorado, got changed into vampires, and have been causing trouble ever since.
All of which is why I can’t wait to punch this particular blood sucker.
With a stake.
Right through his heart.
Because I’m more than just a teenager who’s dressed up for a night of dancing. I’m a dragon-shifter princess with a secret obsession.
I know. My life is strange. It runs in the family.
Squinting, I focus on the guy’s birdy outfit. Dragon shifters like me are immune to supernatural glamours, so I can easily detect the decaying body that’s magically hidden under all those feathers.
The real costume-wearing human got attacked by an audax. After drinking the victim’s blood, this particular vampire magically took on the man’s appearance, bird outfit and all.
And the original chicken guy? Way dead.
Cold sorrow moves through me. Most likely, I’m the first to know about this lost life. I’m certainly the only one around here who detects the audax.
Ah, to be a clueless human. They’ve no idea how many evils surround them.
For his part, Vampire Chicken Guy (VCG for short) keeps sauntering along the stone path, his plumed tail bobbing with each step. He pulls off his fake chicken head to reveal someone my age—that would be seventeen—with round cheeks, short red hair and tons of freckles. A stolen face.
My grief melts into lava-hot rage. How dare this audax kill a human? I twist the clunky golden bracelet around my right wrist. If I take this off and flip the segments about, it transforms into a small spike. That’s the only way to fully kill an audax…
A golden stake through the heart.
Meanwhile VCG smiles innocently at passersby. New Yorkers actually grin and wave in return, which is rare. Must be a chicken thing. I hoist up my bandeau top and keep following. The dance club can wait.
VCG is going down.
Christina Bauer thinks that fantasy books are like bacon: they just make life better. All of which is why she writes romance novels that feature demons, dragons, wizards, witches, elves, elementals, and a bunch of random stuff that she brainstorms while riding the Boston T. Oh, and she includes lots of humor and kick-ass chicks, too.
Christina graduated from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School with BA’s in English along with Television, Radio, and Film Production. She lives in Newton, MA with her husband, son, and semi-insane golden retriever, Ruby.
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Web site: http://monsterhousebooks.com/authors/cbauer