Utah and Kione go to skulk around in the rainy shadows--of course it is fucking raining--and Lia thinks for a minute, goes "fuck that noise" and heads to the nearest bar, figuring:
I think if this book has one major flaw--other than the bat-shit insanity, which isn't a flaw IMHO--it is that Nina Bangs (snerk) likes her some adjectives. She likes them even when they blow the flow, or they repeat something we probably already know. It's a bar. OF COURSE THE PEOPLE IN IT ARE DRUNK.
why would any self-respecting vampire be out here in the cold and rain when the bar across the street held a full menu of drunken humans?
Lia then decides to dress in her hunting outfit.
Lia pulled open her coat to assess her battle gear. Leather pants, calf-high boots, and a cute top. She changed cute to sexy with some strategic unbuttoning. Before slipping her makeup case back into her coat pocket, she took out a pair of dangly earrings and put them on. Then she checked her pants pocket to make sure she had enough money for some drinks. Finally, she ran her fingers through her hair and let her curls do their thing.Well, at least they're not thigh high boots, but we REALLY need to back Paranormal Fantasy off that leather cliff, because leather pants suck.
Lia attracts her vampire by ordering a drink--Amaretto Sour, could be worse, it depends on what kind of sour this bar uses and if they're keeping it in the same fridge as the pickles (pro-tip: Don't do this. Ever.)--and then by bleeding. She pricks her finger and smears the blood around until somebody asks what a pulse like her is doing in a place like this.
This brings up another point: It's the blood that attracted the vamp. Why did Lia have to dress all cutsie? She isn't taking the coat off, and in fact probably has to keep it in her lap because she is still wearing her samuri sword into the bar. Which means the bouncers here SUCK, no pun intended.
She acts bubbly and innocent until they get outside. He admits he's a vampire. She actually manages to giggle the bad guy's name out of him--Chris--and then the vampire collapses in agony. By the way, the giggling takes about two paragraphs. It's a little too easy. I'm also starting to think that Nina is an Eddings fan, because this baddie-can't-talk thing reads a little too much like the opening scenes of Domes of Fire.
Lia needs to deal with her vampire-in-agony before things get too bad. There are probably several ways to do this, and she chooses this one:
She glanced around to make sure no one was looking before unsheathing her sword and plunging it into his back. Then she wiped the blade on a convenient patch of grass and returned it to its scabbard.In the parking lot of a bar, ladies and gentlemen. Oh, and she's not trying to kill him. In fact, she tells him to suck it up and then get his ass out of Portland before she actually has a reason to make him dead. er.
(Another especially amusing layer to this story: Corpus Christi, TX, where I'm from? There's this smaller town outside of it called, you guessed it, Portland. So unless I focus really hard this is all defaulted to the parking lot outside of Portland's Kmart, which is probably the only place in Portland TX where you can even FIND a bar. It probably isn't that amusing to anybody else, due to Portland, OR being the famous one, but it gets a couple extra giggles from me)
However, I do think that Ms. Bangs is also a fan of Laurel K. Hamilton. Why?
Adam is out to kill any vampires who’re joining up with the new flavor in town. And the new flavor is going down very soon.
Utah, meanwhile, is bitching about how his soul is too close to the surface and it has needs. One for violence, one for sex. Kione isn't helping, and yep, he really wants to screw Lia.
Oh hey, there's a vampire! He decides to go in for the kill. Except his brother Tor has just showed up randomly, and after talking together LOUDLY they decide to do the hunt together.
...Utah in his raptor form is about twenty feet long. And I know, I KNOW you guys are thinking of the kitchen scene in Jurassic Park...but there's one little problem with the whole dinosaur-badass model that I just remembered. I'd like to know if Nina Bangs also noticed this, but she doesn't actually describe Utah as a dino, save for stating that you can see the shadow of his human form within him (somehow) and that he's twenty feet long. But science kind of stole a lot of a raptor's badass street cred. See, according to the fossil record? Dinosaurs had feathers, and their arms apparently looked like adorable little wings.
Which means that Utah's basically a twenty foot killer chicken. Fully capable of killing you with his impressive toenails, but still:
|This is what Wikipedia says a Utahraptor looks like. HE'S SMILING AT YOU.|
And oh, yeah, IT IS RAINING. We will now pause for a moment while you imagine a girl with a ninja sword and that twenty foot wet chicken-lizard opening a can of murder on a couple of vampires.
Utah and Tor beat the vampires around until Kione shows up and casually flings Utah against a wall. He gets pissy when he sees Tor, but fortunately Tor has two brain cells and less testosterone and he talks the killer elf (snerk) down until everybody's civilized again.
Tor and Lia exchange hellos. We get another variation on the "Vampires aren't people--yes they are" arguement that adds nothing to the story, but this one is mercifully breif.
Kione questions one vampire using magic that literally fries the dude's brain. Smoke drifts out of the vampire's nose. Lia defends the other one, arguing that the dude is only a couple years dead and he was a teenager when he got turned. Kione tries to push and Utah randomly backs Lia up. I guess we're working on the "we're getting along now" part of the road to fucking. Kione just decides to wipe the vampire's mind and give him a brand new set of memories. And then he does it to the still-living human that the vampires were eating, because having a human tell the press about what he saw would fuck up the story, I guess. It's a cheap get out of jail free card and it irks me.
Kione tries to push the "vampires need killing" arguement, but Lia gets a telepathic call from Adam that nobody else hears, thus ending the scene before things get sticky.
The chapter ends with Utah looking at Lia and thinking about where he's going to sleep tonight. And yes. It fully implies that he wants it to be in Lia's bed.
I love this book. I love it so much.