"I mean, most of them just go for the ambiance," Irina went on. "But Davor..."
"I know," I said, sighing, feeling what little drive I had left to put on makeup disappear.
Sanctuary was a club for, well, otherworldly creatures. The types of creatures they told us about in scary campfire stories, or in TV shows and movies, the ones they swore didn't actually exist.
Only they did.
How else did the stories start, after all?
They did exist.
All of them, from what I could tell. From the vampires and the fae to the incubi and Children of Lilith. There were demons and shifters. The list was as endless as the old tales were.
And Sanctuary was one of the few places they could all go and exist as their true natures. Together. Because Sanctuary was spelled so that no one could fight.
But the spell did allow for some provisions.
Like anyone could beat anyone else bloody all they wanted. If it was a scene.
Sanctuary was a kink club.
I'd been there a few times in the past, mostly just to sit at the feet of my master, offering up my neck if there was nothing on the menu at the club they wanted.
But that was all before Davor.
If he wanted to do a scene with me, I wouldn't be able to refuse. Certainly not in public. He could coerce, me, of course. Right after they drank from us, we were all dreamy and dopey and would agree to almost anything they wanted. But I had a feeling Davor wouldn't even give me that courtesy. He would drag me up on the stage, and strap me to a table unwillingly. Because he liked the fear and the denial.
He would take out months and months of frustration on me.
Because I'd denied him the one thing he wanted from me, the one thing I still had the free will to control.
Sure, yes, sometimes we wanted it with our masters, even if we knew there were supernatural powers of persuasion not fully under our control. But many of the masters were gorgeous, sexy, enticing. We had human needs still. And they were happy to fulfill them.
But if we didn't want it, we didn't want it. And it had never been a problem in the past since they knew someone in the house would want it. For evil creatures who were almost pure selfishness, they'd proven surprisingly understanding of the concept of "not being in the mood."
Well, except for Davor.
I think it was why he took so much pleasure in hurting me. Because he could do that. But he couldn't force me. Not as a guest under my true master's roof.
It had happened once before with a guest from far away, someone it seemed no one knew well. And he'd forced himself on one of the thralls. We'd woken up to her screams. It had been brutal and devastating for her, and a wake-up call for many of us when we realized that not all of them abided by the concept of consent.
We'd all been called into the common room—thralls and vampires alike—to watch my master cut off his head. Only, he didn't start with the head. He started with toes and fingertips, then feet and hands, ears, nose, testicles, penis, cut open and pulled out guts, then finally, finally, he cut off his head.
We take what is freely offered and no more, he'd declared, waving an arm saturated in blood toward the gathered thralls.
That story was still whispered amongst the guests.
It was a comfort, of sorts, that our master would defend us, even if only for his own pride and reputation, that he struck fear in the hearts of other vampires.
It was the only thing that saved me from sure rape.
But it wouldn't protect me from getting lashed at a club. Pain and humiliation were not, it seemed, directly against the rules. If it were, I would no longer be in Davor's hands in general.
It would be okay.
It was one night.
I would survive.
I'd survived many bad nights before.
I would get through this one.
As it turned out, though, just barely.
And not on my own.
I was stuck with the little golden retriever, always nipping at my heels, excitedly babbling about what we were going to be doing. His enthusiasm was exhausting.
I'd been on the human plane so long that I forgot what that shit felt like.
Daemon was new. And he was finding how much this world contrasted the life he'd always known. I probably shouldn't have been so pissy about his excitement. After the shock of being in the human world subsided, I'd done my fair share of wilding out as well. Though I managed to do it without so much fucking talking.
I Kissed Shara Wheeler By Jessica Gadziala Written on the Wind (The Blackstone Legacy #2) By Jessica Gadziala Under One Roof (The STEMinist Novellas #1) By Jessica Gadziala The Mrs. Degree (Accidentally in Love #2) By Jessica Gadziala The Homewreckers By Jessica Gadziala Summer Love By Jessica Gadziala Ruthless Rival By Jessica Gadziala Book Lovers By Jessica Gadziala Wright That Got Away (Wright #11) By Jessica Gadziala The Secret (Single in Seattle #1) By Jessica Gadziala The Recovery Agent (Gabriela Rose # 1) By Jessica Gadziala Falls Boys (Hellbent #1) By Jessica Gadziala