An unlikely passion is ignited between a vampire and the ruler of an alien planet when their paths cross on a busy New Chicago street. Devyn is used to getting whatever he wants, from fast cars to every woman he grants a dazzling smile. As the King of the planet Targonia he's been blessed with power, wealth and incredible looks...not to mention his fighting prowess. Though Devyn lives on Earth, some 70 years after the mass immigration of various alien species to our planet, not much has changed for him. He finds himself working for AIR (Alien Investigations and Removal) using his extensive fighting skills and ability to control others with his mind to find aliens that have broken the law and execute them.
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Devyn loves his life, thoroughly enjoying a lifelong goal to have sex with a woman of every species, while always maintaining a rule of never sleeping with the same species more than once. His life of debauchery comes to a grinding halt when he literally bumps into Bride McKells in the middle of the street in New Chicago in Chapter 1. At first crash, Devyn finds himself intrigued by the mysterious woman he catches in his arms, and attempts to decode what species she is, quickly detecting her looks are a magical glamour.
Upon discovering she is a vampire, confirmed through her use of hypnotic suggestion known as The Voice, Devyn's interest instantly wanes since he has been with the species already. Bride's interest in Devyn, however, becomes increasingly desperate as she catches the scent of her long lost shape-shifting friend on him during their encounter. His attempt to rebuke her only strengthens her resolve when she learns that she is not the only vampire in existence as she had once believed, and she attempts to convince him to take her to her friend or the other vampires. No longer interested in her sexually, Devyn uses his mind control to trap her body still as he leaves her alone in the crowded street.
Bride becomes obsessed with finding Devyn to learn the whereabouts of her friend, currently known as Macy and an agent of AIR, and uses what she learned from Devyn's conversation to track him down. She is also desperate to find the other vampires he mentioned in hopes of learning more about herself, and why she cannot keep blood down as of late. After finding Devyn and learning of his plans to trap another alien that AIR is hunting, Bride uses her powers to kidnap the alien in front of Devyn and his partner Dallas, attempting to force his hand.
Bride is shown to be a weak vampire in her attempts to control Devyn and her glamour, but the author alludes to a much greater power inside of her that is hidden by a horrible debilitating pain, that Bride describes as "the thorns," every time she uses her powers in excess. This happens once she arrives back at her apartment and locks the alien in a cell, causing her to pass out for several days. Upon awakening, the alien - obviously deathly sick by his physical appearance - attempts to convince Bride to release him and seduce her. Luckily, Bride has learned that the alien is carrying a vicious foreign parasite that consumes it's host, driving them insane and ultimately killing them. The catch? The parasite is an intelligent being that will only keep the host alive if it is spread through sex. It lowers the amount in the body, but transfers the parasite to another unwitting being.
Eventually Devyn tracks Bride down, and the alien (Nolan) is taken back to AIR for study and interrogation in hopes of stopping the Queen of the parasites from arriving and destroying the Earth like she had so many other planets already. Over time, Devyn learns about Bride's inability to keep down blood, and given her beating him when she kidnapped Nolan, his interested in her had been thoroughly renewed, though seeming to extend beyond just the act of sex. There are a few scenes where they play cat and mouse in her efforts to learn information and his desire to be with her, including a night where she is almost killed by vampire hunters and he slaughters them to save her. Their connection continually grows, until she accidentally feeds from him, and worried she may have taken too much, feeds him her healing blood in return. This weds them according to vampire custom and Devyn becomes furious.
Coincidentally, Bride's unique healing blood was discovered to work on the alien parasites as well after she puts it in a few glasses of wine she gave to Nolan while in captivity. Once AIR discovers this possible cure, they bring Bride in as a "permanent resident" in order to siphon her blood for tests and treatment for those already infected. Unfortunately, Devyn's blood was they key to her dietary ailment and once she had his, was no longer able to keep a drop of other blood or plasma supplements down. Nearing death after weeks of starvation and blood draining, Devyn learns of Bride's state and breaks her out of the facility, taking her to his home.
Their relationship becomes strained when Devyn's childhood traumas cause him to pull away from Bride sexually and become irritatingly proper once they live together, and she continues to want answers to her species. Devyn agrees to take her to the slave auction where he bought the two vampire women he had been with in order to find other vampires that would be attempting to buy their comrades back at the auction. Vampires survived the alien wars that ensued decades prior by becoming myth and existing solely in underground cities, so the fact that Bride lived on the surface was a concern to Devyn who had been to their city when he returned the two females and learned of their traditions.
Once they arrive at auction, the vampires they find happen to be some of the highest up in their society, one being a fierce warrior by the name McKells. We quickly learn that Bride McKells (who got her name from the words tattooed on her arm) was actually this vampire's intended wife, but her extraordinary powers, that would eventually become limitless, put a death warrant on her head as a child. After the auction Devyn and Bride accompany the other vampires to the underground city and await a meeting with the King regarding Bride's fate. It is here we learn of Bride's true powers, how rare they are, and how her parents died attempting to smuggle her to the surface to save her.
When they finally meet the King, Bride is instructed by McKells to hide her true powers and thoughts as the King is a mind reader and will kill them all if he learns the truth, that she is Nefreti. We also learn that the King's hatred of Bride's powerful kind comes from the death of his brother at one of their hands. After the King speaks with the group he imprisons Devyn for returning to the city against his orders, and after torturing him in front of Bride she finally pushes through the thorns hiding her powers and stops the King. Before she kills him, as she desperately craves for his treatment of Devyn and the death of her parents, she is stopped by another of her kind that enters the room. It turns out to be the woman that tortured the King's brother, and she promises to contain him so he will not harm them.
Bride's powers are too great to control, however, and she is terrified of her ability to control the every action of people including Devyn. AIR comes in quickly as she commands all of them to safely leave, and they stun her and take her back above ground. Over time, the powerful Arcadian known as Kyrian uses his mental abilities to put Bride's more potent powers back into hiding so she can be with Devyn.
Best part of story, including ending:
I love this story because because it introduces multiple antagonists and simultaneous story lines, while still maintaining the story of the main characters as the focus. It also has a great dose of humor throughout.
Best scene in story:
My favorite scene is the ending when Bride's incredibly powers devastate her because she doesn't want to control others and tries to send Devyn away, sobbing whenever her power causes him to do exactly as she says.
Opinion about the main character:
Devyn's conceit and arrogance are definitely a lot to handle, but his humor helps to balance it a bit.