Sabella (Blood Stone Book 2) by Tanith Lee
English | 2020| Fantasy | Horror | ePUB| 2.2 MB
This repackaged edition of a classic sci-fi tale from a master storyteller explores the life of a vampire on a Mars-like colony as she struggles to hide her true nature. On the rosy sands of a distant Earth colony, Sabella lives a quiet life in her isolated home—carefully hiding her vampirism from society.
Sabella may not be undead, but she is painfully allergic to sunlight, possesses supernatural strength and speed, and feeds on fresh blood. In her youth, Sabella seduced a number of men, killing them all for fear of discovery. But with age comes control, and Sabella has sworn off of drinking human blood.
After four years of staying clean, Sabella receives an invitation to her Aunt Cassi’s funeral—along with several thousand credits to ensure she attends the reading of the will. But when Sabella arrives at the funeral, she discovers that the funds were a ruse. Before her death, Cassi—a devout Christian Revivalist—discovered the truth about Sabella and tasked her manservant, John Trim, to hunt Sabella down. Trim hires private investigator Sand Vincent to get close to Sabella and suss out the truth.But Sand is only human—and Sabella anything but. As Sand becomes enthralled by Sabella’s charm, Sabella must combat her own instincts to keep him alive—and society’s suspicions away.
I realized the tunnel was closing in on me after all, was dragging me away, and I beheld my mother’s terrified face snatched from me, receding—
And I woke up to discover myself crying softly, “Momma, Momma!” Like one of those dolls of centuries before.
“It’s all right,” somebody said. “Really it is. You’re awake. It’s all right, now.”
I could see the air-bug, quiet, and scattered with persons who slept on without the raw edges of dreams to slash them alert again. And next to me, on the twin seat at my side, but not fastened in, a shadow saying, “Honestly, it’s O.K. now,” very gently, as if to the child I had been two instants before.
“Is it O.K.?” I asked, to gain time.
“Sure it is. You’re back.”
“Truly. I swear.”
He laughed, this gentle still. I hadn’t looked at him beyond the first uncalculated awakening gaze that hadn’t assimilated anything. But he was young. My age?
I’ll have to be extra careful now.
“That’s better,” he said. “Look, can I get you anything?”
“Anything?” No, I must not fool around.
“Well, a brandy?”
“You must have something, to prove to yourself the dream’s over. I’ve had dreams like that sometimes.”
“How do you know what kind of dream it was?”
“A bad one. Come on. Oh, I know,” he said. His voice was warm, melodic. Perhaps Prokofiev had written his voice. “Last year I was on Gall Vulcan, with my brother. I freaked out on mescadrine.” (Some drug.) Now he was telling me how his big brother saved him, sat and held his hand, ran him into the ground to sweat the horrors out of him, rocked him like a baby. It was extraordinary. “I’m not ashamed to tell you,” said the young man in the shadow. “We shouldn’t be ashamed.”
I was ashamed. Afraid, ashamed. Excited.
This was the duck-catch syndrome. I’d ducked, but the missile had still come straight at me. In avoiding it, I’d caught the ball in my ungloved, unready hands.
“If you don’t want a brandy, what about an iced fruit juice?”
I’m going to a funeral. Don’t make it two.
“All right. Thank you.”
He went to the auto-dispenser, and I looked at him. And when he came back and we sat drinking cold juice, I looked at him then, too. He was sunlit, even in the night cabin. He had the light bronze suntan of Novo Mars I can’t even take from a ray-lamp. His eyes and his hair, like mine, were dark, and his hair was worn rather long, the recurring fashion among the young poets, the dreamers. His clothes were casual, but of good quality, and he had one of those gold ropes around his neck that are jewelers’ fantasies of snakes, and have narrow graven heads and gem eyes.