Covert Art and Teasers...
Author's Note: my apologies, but this is NOT an update with added chapters per se to the story. I wanted to add cover art and a teaser to this story, as I've done with several of my more recent postings, and there didn't seem to be any way to add a chapter and move it to the beginning without also bumping the story to the top of “Latest Stories”.
So, again: apologies. The only addition here is the front and rear cover art, and the banner to the beginning of Chapter One. There's no need to go and reread this story if you've already read it... (If you haven't read it, or you just want to do a reread, hey – knock yerself out. I certainly won't say no.)
I will be updating these as I go along, but they'll be just minor edits: catching typos that slipped past me an my betas the first time, and cleaning up a bit of the phrasing and wording here and there.
- Thanks, Ironbear.
Life is a Road
Story #4 of "Oh, the people she knows": a series centered around the Post-Chosen Faith (aka "The Roadverse Chronicles".)
Sometimes the Abyss gazes back...
It had been a long time since she'd fought something that was both faster and stronger than she was. Damaged, almost blacking out still from her impact with the light pole... Faith suddenly realized she was enjoying the hell out of this.
She met the blonde as the vampiress was coming onto her feet with a spinning kick that rocked the blonde vamp's head back and followed it with snap kick that staggered her backwards again. A back fist seemed to flow naturally out of that combo, and it caught the vampire across the cheek, bone shattering under her fist. The side kick that flowed out of that caught Blondie under the chin and sent her back and over to land in a heap six feet away.
Six feet closer to the line of cars at the edge of the parking lot and the early evening traffic beyond...
The blonde vampiress rolled up out of the fall moving back in, eyes blazing. But she wasn't moving quite as fast as she had been only a short bit earlier... Unfortunately... neither was Faith. Faith's hand came out from under her jacket with a pair of wood-and-steel throwing spikes and her arm blurred, both spikes embedded in the blonde's chest a split second later. Neither of them hit the heart. A pity, that. In the back of her mind, Faith was dimly aware that she could hear screams coming from the direction of the restaurant, and she felt sick inside, the savage battle joy suddenly going out of her.
She doubted that she could concentrate for the half moment it would take to draw her Valdris blades to her hands, with her head the way it was. Not something that she really wanted to do, anyway: she'd rather keep those in reserve and a secret for now. No matter. Faith's hands came away from her jacket the second time with a knife in each fist: the big Moeller bowie in her right and her knife, the knife the Mayor had given her and that she'd repossessed for herself finally, in her left.
They'd never been able to find out exactly what that knife was. Not even Willow had been able to analyze it completely, nor had Giles ever found anything reliable on it in his books. All Faith knew for certain was that it would cut damned near anything, and it dealt wounds that would kill almost anything she'd ever struck with it.
Blondie checked her rush at the sight of that blade. Faith didn't slow – she was already moving to meet the vampiress half way, and she came in low and fast with the big bowie coming across in a left/right arc and the wicked looking Hibben style knife coming in low and upwards to gut her opponent. An opponent that wasn't quite there: the blonde backpedaled and twisted aside, taking a cut across the collarbone and upper breast from the big bowie in order to avoid the second blade.
Faith snarled and reversed the left hand knife as she went past and spun to bring it across the vampire's throat. The blonde leaned away from it again, and struck, nailing Faith in the right side with a knee, hard. Faith grunted and continued the move to bury the blade backhand in the vampire's gut, only to have her arm blocked and then locked in some sort of aikido hold as she was spun around. She wrenched away, and there was a nasty popping sound as her shoulder separated followed by the Mayor's knife clattering to the asphalt.
She didn't scream, nor did she pass out from the sudden shock... but it was a very near thing.
She almost blacked out again as her left arm was caught in a vise-like grip once more and wrenched around behind her, her shoulder dislocating in addition to the separation. An arm snaked around her neck, drawing her backwards against the blonde vampire's body, holding her immobile for a moment as much from the pain as from the grip. A moment was all it took: the big bowie hit the pavement as she felt teeth in her neck and her back arched into the pain and ecstasy of the bite...
There was a reason that vampire groupies called it 'The Kiss
', she knew. She'd felt it before. She knew that she had only seconds, if that, before the ecstasy of the draining sucked her in and drove all thought of resistance from her mind, losing herself in the pleasure.
And this time, she didn't have veins full of Orpheus and a deliberate plan to poison the bitch as they had Angelus. When she woke up from this
embrace, she'd be a vampire's get, if she woke up at all...