CW: Mild violence and Adult situations

Name: Holly

Day/Time: Sunday, 3:18 PM

Current state of mind: Relaxed

What are you wearing? Oversized gray sweats & an oversized t-shirt that says, “Fuck off”

What are you listening to? Nights Like This by W. Darling

What are you drinking? Hazelnut coffee

Where are you? In bed

Some people are magnets for drama and danger. Me? I’m a magnet for Death, as in the God of Death aka the Grim Reaper. We’ve been running into each other a lot these past few weeks, so I shouldn’t have been surprised to see him last night. I also shouldn’t have been surprised by the ill-timed flat given my recent bout with bad luck. But what can I say, I’m an optimist at heart, always looking for the silver lining in the dark.

Ash and I were on our way to Illusion, the two of us singing along to a nineties’ rock song when the rear tire blew. One minute we were carefree and having fun, the next the SUV was thumping along the slick street. I pulled over and the two of us hopped out, cursing our crap luck. Thank the gods, I had a couple of cans of Fix-A-Flat in the back. Hopefully, the foam would do its job and hold the tire long enough for us to get to the nightclub.

I popped open the rear hatch and froze; the fine hairs on the back of my neck standing on end as the faint scent of sulfur threaded through the frosty wind. Malevolent magic tinged the air with warning. Demons.

I spun as a trio of demonic assholes emerged from the thick of the snow-covered trees. My heart pounded, my powers pulsing in tune with its beat as they approached us. I planted my feet as Ash did the same beside me. We might’ve been outnumbered and ill-equipped for a fight, but we’ve been through worse and survived. We would survive this.

Ash and I traded glances and unleashed our magic; a stream of fire shooting out from our palms as we fried the three of them extra crispy. Their bodies turned to ash, dissipating like dust in the wind. At least they were easy kills—which isn’t always the case. Hell, it’s hardly ever the case. Maybe my luck was finally turning.

It was time to get back to the original task at hand: fix the flat and be on our merry way. I turned and slipped on a patch of ice, my body going into a freefall. Before my ass could meet pavement, I was scooped up and cradled against a rock-hard body, the familiar scent of leather and spiced sandalwood enveloping me.

Whoever thought Death could be so beautiful?

I met Thanatos’s silvery gaze, my breath hitching in my chest as I clung to him, drinking in his chiseled features. Time stopped and my brain fritzed out, going offline as I reveled in his warmth. But my bliss was short-lived as Ash’s frantic voice cut through the haze engulfing my mind.

Thanatos eased me down onto the back seat, and I shivered in the absence of his heat. He squatted down and inspected the tire, shining a penlight over the flat. Nothing was damaged, other than the tire itself. He asked if I had a spare. I did, but he didn’t need to bother changing it. We could handle it ourselves. But there was no arguing with him.

I sighed in defeat, allowing him to close me in the car as he got to work. As Ash chatted with Ryan, reassuring him we were safe, I swept my eyes over the moonlit road. If Thanatos was helping us out, I could help him out by watching his back. And it was a sexy back from what I remembered. Broad. Muscular. Tattooed. It was the kind of back that was perfect for sinking your nails into.

Memories of the last night we spent together flashed in my head, playing out like a highlight reel of our greatest hits. It had been a month since we hooked up, but I remembered that night clearly. I remembered every inch of his tanned and immaculately sculpted frame. I remembered the way his body possessed mine as he took control, leaving me completely at his mercy.

A blast of icy air hit me in the face, pulling me from my fantasy land as Thanatos poked his head in through the open door. The tire had been fixed and we were good to go. I owed him. So, I asked him if he wanted to join us.

His dark brows shot up in surprise and my cheeks heated in humiliation. What the hell was I thinking? We weren’t dating or anything. Our one-night fling was just that—one night. No strings attached. No complications. And here I was, complicating things. Just as I was about to rescind my offer, he accepted it, his mouth curving up in a sly smirk, like he knew he’d been on my mind.

I shot him a sugary sweet smile and plopped my keys into his gloved palm. He was driving. With my shitty luck, I was likely to kill us all.

We arrived at Illusion safely, all eyes turning to us as the three of us strolled into the VIP Lounge. The moment of silence lasted an entire second before the Coven surrounded us, everyone firing off questions at once. Then Nick intervened and shut everyone down. He and Karina led the three of us to a vacant booth, and yes, even Thanatos followed. He might’ve been a god, but this was Nick’s realm, and Than respected that.

Than’s thigh pressed up against mine, and I closed my eyes, electric desire coursing through my veins. I hated how he affected me. I hated how I burned for him, lusted after him like some schoolgirl with a crush. What the hell was wrong with me?

I shifted my attention back to the Q & A portion of the night, but it was impossible to focus with Than sitting so freaking close. His presence was intoxicating, his deep timbre hitting me like a shot of smooth whiskey, warming me from the inside out. If I leaned just a little to the left, I could rest my head against his shoulder.

Shit. I needed to get a grip—no, I needed a drink. STAT. I excused myself, beelining it to the bar, nearly mowing Marissa down along the way. I sank down onto one of the padded stools and ordered an espresso martini. I ignored the curious stares as I tossed my drink back and ordered another. I wanted to forget all about Than. I wanted to let loose and have some fun, while dancing my troubles away. Hell, I’d earned it after the week I’d had.

But if wishes were horses…

Than sidled up next to me, leaning against the bar as he studied me with those piercing eyes. Gods, it was like he could see right into my soul. He leaned down; his low tone an erotic caress against my ear, his hot breath ghosting over my skin, sending fiery chills down my spine as he asked what I wanted.

Like it wasn’t obvious?

I was tempted to lie, tempted to tell him to leave me alone, but what was the point? He knew what I wanted. I wanted to feel his mouth against mine. I wanted to feel the scrape of his stubble against my flesh. I wanted to feel his hands skate over my body, while he kissed me senseless. I wanted to taste him, feel him. Hell, I wanted him.

I didn’t mince my words as I whispered them into his ear. His eyes flared with lust, as he flashed me a devilish grin stating that my wish was his command. He extended his hand, and I placed my palm in his as he led me out to the SUV.

The drive to his beach house was quick. We’d barely walked through the door, when he pinned me against the wall, crushing his mouth against mine in a blazing kiss. I gripped his biceps, slipping my tongue between his lips. He broke the kiss leaving me parched and breathless. Caged between his arms, his commanding gaze seared into mine as he asked what I wanted. How I wanted it. In. Fucking. Detail. And gods, did he deliver, leaving me sapped but satisfied.

We rinsed off in the shower and collapsed in bed, completely spent. Than pulled the comforter over us, tucking me against his side as I rested my head against his chest. My eyes fluttered shut, the sound of his heartbeat lulling me into a peaceful sleep.

That’s all you’re getting out of me tonight. Wishing you a happy and healthy 2022.


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