I was able to interview Elizabeth in the moments before dusk, when Dani was still in the Death Sleep. Because Elizabeth is two hundred and fifty years older than Dani, she wakes while the sun still highlights the sky.
Elizabeth has long straight blond hair that falls down the shoulders of her cropped leather jacket. She wears dark jeans and her trademark Harley Davidson boots. She is very striking, with eyes the color of sea foam green. Regal, elegant, dignified and intense, these words all characterize the vampire Elizabeth.
Right now all she can think about is Dani, and that William and Joshua are coming. I do my best to distract her, by focusing on other things…
F.M. Hopkins: Elizabeth, you were turned in 1562.
ELIZABETH: Yes. I was a member of Queen Elizabeth’s court, a dear friend to her. I was sick, on my death-bed, when I was given the gift.
F.M. I looked up the year – that was when Queen Elizabeth passed a Witchcraft Act.
ELIZABETH: (smiles) That was because of me. I was not supposed to recover. I made the mistake of going to her when I healed… when I became immortal. I thought that if I pretended to be human I could live among them awhile longer. I was mistaken.
F.M. She knew?
ELIZABETH: She was highly intelligent, Queen Elizabeth, and a forward thinker. She didn’t know exactly what I was, only that my miraculous recovery could not be natural. She was right. But she broke my heart by shunning me. I had to escape immediately for their goal was to hang me.
F.M. That would have never worked.
F.M. This story you just told me isn’t in FIRE NECTAR…
ELIZABETH: No, it’s my history. I’ll share more of it with you when we write my story together. (Elizabeth will come out after Sun – unless she demands it come sooner. I am at their mercy.)
F.M. Did you know that I haven’t been able to sleep since you all started whispering your tales to me?
ELIZABETH: You should trying sleeping in the daytime. We’ll leave you alone then. (smiles serenely)
F.M. Have you been watching True Blood?
ELIZABETH: I’ve been busy, F.
F.M. I know. Sorry. It’s awful what’s happened.
ELIZABETH: We’ll come together to make it right. And I trust Julian.
F.M. So do I. I hope that doesn’t change.
ELIZABETH: As do I.
F.M. What happened with Saanjh? (Saanjh was her servant/friend in 1812 who Daniella – Dani – eluded to in FIRE NECTAR.)
ELIZABETH: Saanjh. (she looks out a window, still as stone) I haven’t thought of that man in a century.
F.M. What happened?
ELIZABETH: I’ll tell you when I tell you my tale.
F.M. Oh. Okay. I would love to know – you’re very regal and elegant…
ELIZABETH: Thank you.
F.M. Were you always so?
ELIZABETH: I was born of parents who were also in the royal court. My family descends from a long line of dignified, respectable, ancestors.
F.M. Do you think they would be upset that you’re interested in women, and not men?
ELIZABETH: (smiles) Provocative question. I like it. They might. But they’re dead. So, who cares?
F.M. Ha. Okay. That makes sense. What is it about women that you love?
F.M. And Dani? She seems to be straight.
ELIZABETH: She is, but many people falls on a scale and hers tilted toward me. Perhaps it was just a matter of salvation.
F.M. It may have been. But she does love you.
ELIZABETH: I am her maker.
F.M. Right. Of course. But I think she would love you, anyway.
ELIZABETH: Do you think so? (This interests her. For the first time, she looks vulnerable. Elizabeth is the most reserved of the vampires I have met)
F.M. I do. The way she described you in FIRE NECTAR – showed me that she loves who you are, not just what you did for her. She has the utmost admiration for you.
ELIZABETH: (silent for a moment) Thank you. I fear she is angry with me right now… and it is good to hear that. Gives me strength. I am grateful to you for it.
(I’m silent now, too. I’m not sure what to say after that.)
ELIZABETH: So this is going to be on Close Encounters With The Night Kind?
F.M. (stunned) Wow. You all have looked into this. William and Joshua both had checked out the blogs they’re on for this blog tour, as well.
ELIZABETH: I’m sure we like to know what will be representing us. And who.
F.M. What do you think of Close Encounters?
ELIZABETH: Well, Nikki’s avatar is incredible. Please tell her for me that she is fantastically hot.
F.M. I will. I’m not sure how she’ll feel about that, because I’m pretty sure she’s straight.
ELIZABETH: Every woman wants to be told they’re beautiful.
ELIZABETH: I also read her review of Lightning. I thought the Succubi wanting to be human is an interesting concept, don’t you?
F.M. I do. It reminds me of Dani a bit.
ELIZABETH: Daniella is only going through a phase. She lets her emotions get the best of her. It does her nothing but harm.
F.M. I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to make you angry.
ELIZABETH: Her feelings on this subject…make me angry.
F.M. I understand. It must be hard, since you made her.
ELIZABETH: Let’s talk more about the blog.
F.M. Okay – I loved the cover of “Uncollared.”
ELIZABETH: Yes. Clever how the title and design cover the nudity. It’s pretty.
F.M. Do you think Fire Nectar’s cover is too sexy?
ELIZABETH: No. It’s very sensual, though. I think if someone has a problem with it, they probably haven’t had sex in awhile.
ELIZABETH: Humans are too prudish. Their lives are but a drop in the bucket of time, and still they waste precious years holding themselves back from pleasure. I’ll never understand it.
F.M. You’re right. I wish it wasn’t that way.
(She nods and sighs and looks back out the window. Then, alarmed, she sits upright)
ELIZABETH: Dani will be waking up now. It is time.
F.M. Good luck, Elizabeth.
ELIZABETH: William and Joshua are coming. I only have to wait until they get here, stall Daniella from taking action. (she is talking more to herself now and I am surprised at how nervous she appears. Nervous and determined.)
F.M. Thank you for trusting me.
(She turns to me then, and for a moment, appears to soften. But I’m not sure if I am imagining that.)
ELIZABETH: You’ve earned it, my dear. Goodnight.
(I watch her leave like the speed of a gunshot and I am alone, wondering what will happen next.)
Two hundred years ago Daniella faced a decision -
Remain in poverty... or accept the gift of immortality from the elegant female stranger who had the palest of skin, the coldest of hands, and eyes that knew her soul better than she did.
Like all vampires, she had been vetted. Chosen. Exceptional. And like all - she learned the vampire creed and used it as a way of life.
Until she couldn't.
Until she met him.
Adrian was different than other men. The way he smelled, the way he looked at her. The way his heartbeat called just to her.
"We must keep our secret." YES. She had sworn. She had promised. But where were they now... her friends - her family? She was so lonely.
Why did she have to be alone for all eternity? What if she trusted him... told him who and what she really was? What if she didn't do as she was told.
This is the first book in the gripping new series.
JOSHUA is the first in Joshua's story - a novelette of approx. 14,800 words. It is also the continuation of FIRE NECTAR, but can be read on its own.
Two hundred years ago, Joshua was one of the few who passed the test - people who were vetted and chosen to be made immortal because of their exceptional qualities.
He was kind, an artist, a composer of great skill, with restraint that was necessary to hold up their creed:
Do not kill good people.
Keep our numbers low.
Keep our secret... to keep us safe.
Those were the rules.
How could he know that Marion saw in him, her ticket out? How could he know that she lied when she said she loved him? How could he know? He was, in vampire years, just a child.
How could he know that he would never forgive himself for meeting her in secret.
When William - the oldest of their kind - calls, two hundred years later to tell him that the worst has happened - again - Joshua knows he must go at once.
Daniella needs him. She is what Marion pretended to be. For this - she will always have his heart. And his help.
All books in the FIRE NECTAR saga are intertwined with characters overlapping as they are all - a family.
And like a family, they all have their own story to tell.
FIRE NECTAR is a gripping new series where the vampires tell their stories, confide in us who they are as we bound seamlessly between past and present, in our exploration of an immortal way of life.
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