The Last Lady of Lună (S1, E2)

Season Content Notes: abduction, blood


“I am a vampire.

“And I can make you — or keep you — young.”

The room was silent. So silent, I could hear their heartbeats. I looked around the table, and my heart clenched. Their faces, even hidden by blindfolds, were familiar to me.

Karen’s heart-shaped face was pine dark, and I was probably lucky I couldn’t see her eyes just now. They glinted like sunlight through the pine boughs and were just as entrancing.

Victor was lanky and thin, his nose as sharp as a falcon’s beak. Fitting since he was the sharpshooter of the team. Noses shouldn’t be sexy.

Marcus, skin as dark as my hair and lean, with that incongruous blond hair cut so short it looked like feathers. Would it feel like feathers too?

Leyla’s face was round as Lună and tanned like a surfer, her black curls tamed into tight braids.

Benj was pale with dark brown hair and eyes, much like my own people. But it was his mouth I loved: a sensual bow always quirked with humor. Almost always. I’d managed to wipe the humor away.

I felt like I already knew them, and Luna’s approval sang in my blood. But they weren’t mine yet, and they might never be.

“You’re right, Nastasia, that is a… very interesting benefits package,” Marcus said, his light tenor calm and just the slightest bit patronizing. “But we’re happy with our current employer.”

I slumped. I couldn’t help it. “You don’t believe me. You think I’m crazy.”

“No one said that, Nastasia–”

Snorting, I pushed my chair back and stood up. “I don’t like being patronized. I like being treated like a fool even less.”

“I think we’ve been real patient, Nastasia.” Marcus wasn’t sounding so calm anymore, and I knew I was losing them. Maybe had already lost them. “But we want to go home now.”

My breath caught, but I’d known it was coming.

If they had given me a time I could have shown them proof, convinced them to hear me out… but sotii could not be forced. If I didn’t release them, they would be prisoners. Not sotii, and never mine.

I took the knife off my belt and placed it in front of Victor. “It shouldn’t take you long to get yourselves loose. I’ll be gone before you do. There’s a rental van in the garage with your things in it.”

I turned for the door. I had been so sure these were the ones, but there would be others. I still had time…

“Why are you looking to hire security?”

Leyla’s voice was light and sweet, and I could have drowned in it.

“Like I said, I have enemies. And I am alone.”

“I thought all vampires had clans for protection.”

This time it was my own heartbeat I heard hammering in my ears. Leyla knew about my people?



Leyla hadn’t really expected this Nastasia to let them go. Not until she heard the grief in the woman’s voice and her footsteps — no longer silent — heading away from the table. But it seemed this was the real deal. Giggle and all.

She should have let the vamp keep walking, but she told herself she was curious. And how often do you get offered a chance at immortality?

Marcus was to her right, so it was probably his hand that gripped her shoulder so tightly. It was definitely him quietly demanding “What the hell are you doing?”

“Getting some tea. Come on, Nastasia, Marcus may be in a hurry to get home, but it’s been too long since I had some real girl talk.

“Karen’s awesome, but she doesn’t gossip, you know?”

“I…” the vamp’s voice wavered, then firmed up, “My clan was bound to Luna, but our enemies tore us apart when I was a child.”

To most people, that would be the cue to change the subject. People getting torn apart — literally or figuratively — wasn’t really girl talk. Unless you were the mean girls.

Leyla wasn’t a mean girl. When she tore you to pieces, it wasn’t with words, and it was for a better reason than shits and giggles. Around her, the rest of the team shifted in their chairs. If they had comms on, they’d have been bombarding her with questions. But they knew better than to interrupt when she was getting tea.

“That sucks. When you were a kid? How did you survive?”

“My Mama got me out. She and Ozanna and Emil raised me, kept me safe. But Mama died last year.”

This called for a physical gesture. Offer a hug, lean closer, something. But Leyla couldn’t do any of that. Couldn’t even offer a hand to hold with the vamp who-knew-how-far across the room. So she tried to put it all into her voice. “Wow. I’m sorry.”

“Thank you,” Nastasia’s voice was closer. “We knew. Her sotii died in the fighting, and without them… she died a little every day.”

“Her sotii? I don’t know that word. They defended her?”

“Yes,” the word wasn’t more than a whisper. Very close, then. Leyla tapped twice on the table, letting the team know they could join the convo.

“Is that what you were looking for from us, Ma’am?” Benj asked. His drawl was deeper than usual. Leyla thought he did that on purpose when they seduced someone together, his drawl playing off her fry. “You need… what was it, sotey of your own?”

“Yes.” Her chair scraped on the floor again. It hurt Leyla’s ears but she’d learned to work through that kind of annoyance long ago. “I’m coming into my powers but still weak. Without sotii I am… honestly, I’m walking around with a target on my back.”

Marcus squeezed Leyla’s shoulder again, a warning that he’d have words for her later. But Leyla didn’t care because he was willing to work with her now.

“I still don’t understand why us,” he said. “No, I’m even more confused why us. Wouldn’t you want vampires for that?”

Nastasia giggled again, and Leyla shivered. She would never admit it, but if she hadn’t heard the vamp giggle earlier, Leyla would have let her walk away. But she had needed to hear it again.

Now that she had, she was pretty sure she was hooked. Addicted to vamp giggles, sight unseen. Yeah, she was in trouble.



That Leyla had taken me by surprise was understatement of the year. That was okay, though; it gave me another chance.

“Sotii are always human. That’s… Mama’s sotii came from human families who had been part of our clan for centuries.”

“You can’t do that.” Leyla’s voice was warm and understanding, and I leaned into it. I was telling them too much, far too much for humans who weren’t bound to a clan. But I didn’t care.

“No. Even if I could find anyone… I can’t take a normal human as sot. I’d just be putting that target on their back too. Oh, people in the clan were trained to fight. But martial arts or self-defense or even time in the military isn’t really…” I swallowed.

“No need to explain, ma’am. We have a bit of a… specialized skill set.”

“Mama never recovered after they died. I want to know that anyone who becomes mine will survive.”

No one said anything for a moment, then Karen barked a laugh. “That is some tea. So we’d be what… bodyguards?”

“Bodyguards, advisors… ah… food?” I couldn’t help wincing a little at some of their expressions. “It’s… it’s another way sotii protect us. I’ve never fed — that’s why my powers are weak. When I take sotii, I’ll never feed on anyone else. Who else can I trust like that?”

Victor was spinning the knife on the table. Karen cocked her head, following the sound of it. Like a snake, her free hand shot out and grabbed the knife. She weighed it in her hand a moment, then started carving the table.

“This is a shit knife.”

I shrugged, knowing she couldn’t see it, not knowing what it meant. “I only have a few good knives. I wasn’t going to leave one of them behind.”

Karen raised the knife to her cheek — as if she was going to shave with it. “We’ll have to get you more.”

My breath caught again, hope this time. Marcus sighed.

“Nastasia, would you step out of the room and let us talk? I promise we’ll be here when you come back.”

“Of course!” I jumped to my feet, knocking the chair over. Smooth, real smooth. At least they couldn’t see my blush. Shaking my head, I righted the chair and walked away. But I stopped in the doorway.

“I’ll be back in an hour. It’s alright if you aren’t here.”


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Last Lady of Lună S1, E1

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Last Lady of Lună S1, E3

The Last Lady of Lună (S1, E1)

I was a child when enemies destroyed our clan. My mother escaped and tried to raise me in secret, but without my fathers’ blood, she aged and died. Now I am the last head of the Lună vampire clan. My enemies think I am dead, my clan is scattered to the winds, and I am just coming into my powers. I will claim my birthright, rebuild my clan, and destroy our enemies. I’m just going to need a bit of help.

Luckily I know where to find it. A hot team of human mercenaries specializing in security is looking for their next job. They’re exactly what I need. Now I just need to convince them to believe me, keep my secrets, and rain hell on my enemies.

And if Lună is still watching out for me, maybe I’ll finally get laid.

Season Content Notes: abduction, blood


I squatted next to my mother’s grave and watched Lună play hide and seek with the clouds. My skin tingled with the power of her light.

“I think I’ve found them,” I told Mama. “I’ve been stalking them online a while, but I wasn’t sure. I finally got to see them in person. And I felt it. Lună likes them. I think.”

Lună’s light caressed my face, and I heard the memory of laughter. I was still learning to hear Lună’s voice, too young to hear clearly, and with Mama gone, there was no one to teach me. But with her face unveiled, it was easier to recognize her amusement. She liked how excited I was.

“Emil and Ozanna like them, too. Ozanna won’t admit it, though. She says I picked them because of how hot they are.” I ran my hand over the freshly cut grass that grew from Mama’s body. It had been a trick to get her buried here, in a Jewish graveyard. But my people and the Jews both understood the importance of going back to the earth. Mama was the grass now, which would also return to the earth to grow again and again.

And because Mama was the grass, Mama heard me. Even if she couldn’t answer.

“They are hot. All different kinds of hot.” I’d found a picture of them after a job gone wrong. They probably would have preferred not to get into a running firefight. But I’d fallen asleep that night dreaming of ripped clothes, skin gleaming with sweat and smeared with dirt and blood, and eyes shining with victory. The woman they’d been guarding had been leaning on Marcus, a bit bloody and exhausted herself, but still on her feet. “They kick ass, and they’re hot, and Lună likes them. Sound like my kind of sotii, right?

“I just hope they’re kind too.”

I stood up and shook out my legs. They’d been going numb.

“I’ll be, ah… meeting them tomorrow. You wouldn’t approve how, but my dads’ all knew you were a vampire. These people don’t. So don’t start lecturing.” Mama didn’t, of course. I smiled sadly. “I’ll be back in a week to tell you how it goes.”



Marcus Lear woke up slowly and immediately knew that something was wrong. After over 20 years in the security business, long trained habit had him snapping awake. Or should have. The dark didn’t bother him at first — he always kept his room dark. But he was sitting up, and when he tried to stretch, only his left arm would move.

That finally woke him up.

He was sitting up, alright: tied to a chair (except his left arm was free) and blindfolded. Around him, he heard some rustling, a quiet grunt, a scraping sound like a chair moving on a hard floor, tile or concrete. Other people with him, also tied up. Those quiet sounds echoed a bit; otherwise, it was silent. No noise of other people, no cars driving by. Where the hell were they? A basement somewhere?

“Don’t.” The deep, sultry voice with the faintest hint of an accent rang out of the darkness. It ran straight down Marcus’ spine to his groin; for a dizzying moment, he wondered if he was dreaming. BDSM fantasies weren’t usually his thing. But for that voice, he’d be happy to make an exception. “Don’t take off the blindfold. It’s for your sake as much as mine.”

And that was the bucket of cold water. The threat was politely phrased, but it was a threat.

A chair scraped again, out and in. In front of him, this time. Someone else, probably the woman behind the voice, had joined them. He hadn’t heard her footsteps at all. She might have been barefoot or wearing soft-soled shoes…

“Alright, Ms…”


“Ms. Nastasia, I assume you brought us here for a reason. How about you tell us what you want from us?” Whoever ‘us’ was. Marcus hoped the rest of his team wasn’t there, but he wouldn’t have bet on it.

They’d been together, celebrating the end of a successful job with a night out. He remembered Karen whipping them all at the bar trivia game — again — and then nothing else. Drugged, probably.

“Marcus — is it okay if I call you Marcus? I hope we’ll get to know each other very well.” Her emphasis on that ‘very’ hit him with another zing of arousal.

“Fuck!” The word slipped out before he could stop himself and the woman giggled. To his left, he heard someone else swear under their breath. Sounded like Leyla. She’d had a weird kink for giggles as long as he’d known her, so he wasn’t the only one in danger of tripping over his own balls.

“Sure,” he said, trying to sound relaxed, “we can keep it informal.”

“Thank you.” She paused. “Before we begin, I promise I didn’t leave all of you with an arm free by accident. I’m not that much of a fool. I…” she stumbled a moment, “that is…” Marcus realized the confident, sexy vixen he’d been picturing wasn’t that confident, after all. He heard her take a deep breath. “It is an old custom that I doubt will mean much to you. But as a good faith offering, there is food and water. Nothing poisoned or… unsafe.”

“Thank you, Nastasia,” Marcus replied.

“Appreciate it.” Leyla, definitely to his left.

“Ma’am.” Benj, also left but a bit further than Leyla.

“Thanks.” Victor sounded curtly from Marcus’ right.

No one else spoke. Karen either wasn’t there or hadn’t realized that the others had been using the chance to say something as a way to give a subtle roll call. With that woman, it could be… A clatter from the right, sounding closer than Victor.

“Bread and salt,” Karen said. “Hospitality oath. Old, old stuff. Middle ages.”

Marcus rolled his eyes. No one could see it, so he might as well indulge. That was so… Karen.

At least he knew where everyone was — seated around a table with their disturbingly sexy captor. He needed to stop thinking of her as sexy and get his head in the game.

“You do know it!” Their captor sounded delighted. “I mean it. Don’t force my hand, and I promise you’re safe here.”

“Force your hand such as, for instance, get a look at your face so we can identify you later,” Benj said. “That’s fine, ma’am. Long as you keep talking, I’m happy to sit here with my eyes closed for a while. Just a while, mind you.”

Marcus would have kicked Benj if he could. Flirting with the woman who kidnapped you and politely threatened to kill you was not a healthy negotiating tactic.

But Nastasia laughed a little sadly. “I think you’ll be happier with your fantasies.”

“Don’t worry,” Victor said. “Benj will always prefer a badass woman who can take us all down than a pretty face.”

Marcus hadn’t expected the marksman to speak up at all. He was the epitome of ‘walk softly and carry a big stick.’ That voice was getting to all of them. Karen might be keeping her head, but Marcus wouldn’t bet on it.

“I cheated.” Nastasia replied to Victor, “But I wouldn’t mind trying some hand-to-hand later if you stick around.”

“That implies we have a choice.” Marcus tried to steer the conversation back to getting them the hell out of there. “So let’s get back to why you took us in the first place.”

“Of course.” A pause. “I supposed you could say that I want to offer you a job. A permanent position.”

Marcus was surprised by how unsurprised he was. Somewhere in the back of his mind, he’d been putting clues together, and apparently, two plus two did make five.

“And I assume there’s a reason you couldn’t go through headquarters?”

“A few. As you might guess, the biggest one is just… privacy. I know your company is used to handling a lot of secrets. But I’m… my secrets aren’t ordinary ones.”

“Secret is one thing,” Marcus said, “Illegal is another.”

“No! No, I’m not… what a drug lord or something? I’m… an heiress, I guess you’d say? With a lot of enemies and only a few people, I can trust.

“Also, I’m not looking to hire Hartford Security. I’m looking to hire you. You’d need to resign from your contracts — I would cover any early-out fees.

“And like I said, this is a permanent position. It took me a while to find the right team — people with no relationships who might be willing to disappear from their old lives, some of the best in your field, and… um… sorry Marcus, but one thing I looked for was ‘close to retirement.’ ”

Marcus froze.

“We don’t say the r-word,” Benj said in a whisper that could have carried across a football field.

It took Marcus a moment to get his jaw to unclench. “Even assuming I was ‘close to retirement,’ why would that be something you wanted?” Marcus kicked himself even as he asked the question. That was a negotiating question when he could have just said ‘no’ and seen if she was serious about not trying to hold onto them. Before he could take it back, she was talking.

“This is the part I could never figure out how to do…” she murmured.

“The position comes with a… unique benefits package? I thought someone… ah… ‘close to retirement’ might be easier to convince to take a chance.”

His cock had its own ideas on what that ‘unique benefits package’ might be, but Marcus made himself focus. “We’re all ears.”

A deep breath and then, in a voice that managed to be firm but also frightened.

“I don’t expect you — any of you — to believe me. But I am a vampire.

“And I can make you — or keep you — young.”

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Last Lady of Lună S1, E2