Darkstorm: Heart of the Vampire #3 by Amber Kallyn
In this third installment of her Heart of a Vampire series, Ms. Kallyn ups the stakes with a Judge swore to kill any half breed Demon, his lost love whom he had been hand-fastened to before the attack on their clan, and she is protecting his prey, a half demon. Ashlyn, his only true love whom he has not seen since the night their clan were all slaughtered or changed, is suddenly in the town where cult killings are going on definitely oversaw by a demon, or half-demon who is crazy with blood lust. She is running from him with the Halfling, protecting the creature. He has to save her; as he didn’t once before, just the sight of her is opening all the old wounds and emotions.
Ashlyn spots the Judge, Connor Gregory, the only man she has ever loved, and knows that she has to keep her son, Sean Connor Gregory, from him. For five hundred years she was held by a master demon, Laroche, he did things to her that are completely unforgivable, one of them being somehow changing the child she was carrying the night she was turned into half vampire, half demon. Ashlyn knows that Connor is a formable emotionless Judge and that he will kill her son for existing without asking questions. Before they can get to the airport and out of state, Laroche, head demon after them, has his men put a terrorist alert looking for her and her son; they head up to Moss Creek and the hopeful protection of Jordon MacDougal, her cousin and their clan leader.
As Connor is taking out two demons and a minion he hears that four other demons have crashed Ashlyn’s car and are giving chase on foot. He rushes to save her. Taking out the four demons, but before he can go on to Moss Creek he gets a call to head back to Phoenix, the sheriff has found something he will want to see.
When they get to Moss Creek, Ashlyn and Sean stop at the Sheriff’s office to ask where to find Jordon. They meet up with Niki, Shane’s vampire wife, and then Shane, the shaman/Peace Keeper. Ashlyn stands between her son the danger she perceives Niki; Niki agrees to take them to Jordon’s. Once there, Jordon listens to her story and agrees to help them, not just get out of state, but to get rid of Laroche permanently. He accepts her son no questions asked once she tells him of the blood bond. But she knows that she will never find acceptance from Connor or so she believes, so when he shows up yelling about her demon lover/husband it is easier to run from him than talk to him. Until he makes her mad enough to drive home the point that Sean is his son, changed by demon magic, but a thousand years old he is not going to fall into the blood lust that Halflings usually do.
This story was full of internal conflict as well as the external kind, it was well crafted. I am not sure if it is because he is a Halfling, or because he spent the first five hundred years of life in captivity, but Sean does seem a little young for a thousand year old demon/vampire, or maybe it was the way she treated him, like a young boy; always putting herself between him and any perceived danger. I cannot wait for his story when she will be forced to see him for the grown up he is. That will be an interesting turn of the story line. This was a tightly knit story, with no lose ends. Very nicely woven with plenty of emotions to keep a reader completely sucked in and hoping for the best for the hero and heroine, hoping they could work through the tangle of the past thousand years and refined the love that so consumed them before their clan was attacked.
I am rating this story 5 star, a thousand years, waiting for that love to bring you back to life. Yeah, this one touched this reviewer’s heart strings just right. Thank you for sharing, Ms. Kallyn.