Bless The Beauty - By Stacey Kennedy Page 0,1

be the death of me.”

The death of him. I cringed with deep heartache and I tried not to realize how much of a sore spot that statement was. I stepped into my panties, pulled them up and felt sick at the thought that one day he’d be gone. But he was a mortal. I couldn’t change that fact.

Well, I could, but I wouldn’t. Chase was a fine human and one I wanted left that way.

Maybe it was selfish of me not to offer him immortality, but I loved him just the way he was. So, if that made me a self-centred bitch, then so be it.

Making quick work of my pinstripe pantsuit, I mentally swore at the department for making me hide my legs. It was a shame the FBI didn’t approve of short skirts. My thin, muscular calves were my best attributes and I hated hiding them. However, it just added to fun with Chase. He loved them just as much and I liked to tease him accordingly when I had the chance.

I buttoned up my shirt, settled my waist length black hair appropriately and glanced in the full-length mirror across the room.

Yes, I could see myself in the mirror. Vampire myths came in abundance. Most were funny, some annoying.

Old vampires, like me, with a few decades behind them, weren’t burnt to a crisp by the sun, but it drained our energy. Powerless and more mortal-like was not a state any vampire wanted to be in. The older one got, the longer they could stay out in the sun. I could top half-an-hour before I fell to the ground in a heap and then the sun had the power to kill me.

Another truth was our abilities to warp minds. That talent always did come in handy.

I may have—but would never admit to—altered some of the big-wigs in the FBI to ensure we always worked during the night hours. A girl’s gotta do, what a girl’s gotta do!

But I did try my best to limit altering anyone’s mind, there is guilt after all, which I usually felt lots of when I did it to someone I knew.

With that wonderful guilt in my mind, I tore myself away from the mirror, grabbed my jacket and slipped it on. Just as I finished up with the last button, Chase asked,

“Ready, doll?”

I looked up to find him fiddling with the navy tie around his neck. I smiled softly and approached him. “You think a man of thirty would know how to do his own tie.” Taking the tie from his hands, I looped it around, and pulled it tight.

Chase grinned with a sweet innocence. “But then I wouldn’t need you around, would I?”

“Touché.” I laughed and pulled the knot up to his throat before giving his chest a light pat.

“Done and as handsome as ever.”

He stepped closer, his hands around my waist to keep me locked in close to him. “If you believe that then why are you so hesitant to move in with me?”

I sighed exasperated. “You know why.” Not this again…

“Hadley.” His sigh equalled mine. “We have been together five years now. I think you could say we are in a committed relationship.”

“I do not commit to anyone,” I retorted, feeling right annoyed that we were having this conversation again. “You knew this about me when we started our relationship. If you are looking for that then it’s time you looked elsewhere.”

Yes, I was being harsh, but I wouldn’t lead him on. As much as I wished I could be solely his, it was an impossible feat. I belonged to another, Chase just didn’t know it.

Kellen Boyd, the vampire who gave me immortality, and the one I didn’t doubt for a moment that I belonged to, loved me. But after centuries of being with him, I needed to make something of myself. I couldn’t just be the bride of Kellen anymore.

At the time, he had let me go when my need for a life of my own had become evident. But he hadn’t hidden the fact that he would eventually come for me. I’d been glancing over my shoulder ever since. Not that the idea of seeing him wasn’t appealing, it was. Yet, with Chase in my life now, I didn’t need the added complication.

Numerous times, I had wanted to explain this to Chase, but I doubted he’d understand , ‘By the way, I’m married under vampire law. Sorry.’ He wasn’t likely to be okay with that.

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