Home > Fangs for Nothing (The Fangover #2)

Fangs for Nothing (The Fangover #2)
Author: Erin McCarthy

Chapter One


WHEN Johnny Malone jerked out of sleep suddenly, he became aware of three things in rapid succession. One, his bandmate Drake Hanover’s butt was in a sling, literally, just a few feet away from Johnny’s face, cupped in assless leather chaps, his arms slack and head back as he snored loudly. Two, Johnny realized that there was a pale, petite hand spread across his crotch comfortably, like it had been there for quite some time. Three, he had no clue where in the hell he was and his head hurt like a bitch.

Okay, so maybe that was four things, but as he shifted a little from his slumped position on the floor of who the hell knows where, all seemed equally important. The dim room didn’t look familiar at all, not that he could see much with Drake blocking his view as he slept in what Johnny thought just might be a sex swing. There was a lot more of Drake dangling in front of him than he had ever wanted to see. Which made his usual stomach of steel more than a little queasy. He supposed he should be grateful he was behind Drake, not in front of him. Actually, neither was a great position to be in if you got right down to it. Struggling not to groan out loud, Johnny swallowed hard and blinked several times. He was clearly not dreaming and he was clearly hungover, which was a feeling he hadn’t had in damn near a century. It all came hurtling back to him why hangovers had sucked so bad. He felt like ass.

Speaking of ass, which seemed to be a theme for the night, he wondered if he had gotten any the night before, thus explaining the female hand on his junk. Which could be damn awkward, because he couldn’t remember a bleeding thing. The last thing he was aware of was enthusiastically dancing the Cupid Shuffle at his buddy Saxon’s wedding, then . . . nothing. Trying not to wake whoever she was, Johnny chanced a look to his left, praying she wasn’t hideous.

Oh. My. God.

She wasn’t hideous. It was worse.

She was Lizette.

The uptight, paper-pushing French chick who had frozen his assets and was determined to make his life a living hell with her bureaucratic bullshit. She was a rep from the Vampire Alliance, she was beautiful, and she had all the warmth of an iceberg in Alaska during a blizzard. They had argued, he had ditched a meeting with her, and she had tracked him down at the wedding with a systematic determination that scared the shit out of him. One look from her, and his balls had shrunk.

She definitely gave a whole new meaning to the phrase freezing his assets.

He would never have had sex with her. Even if he had been crazy enough to try, she would have stamped a giant DENIED on his dick in red ink.

Yet not only was her sleeping head lying on his shoulder, her very staid and proper blouse mostly unbuttoned, but her right hand, the one that was splayed across his lap?

It was handcuffed to his left wrist.

Johnny practically swallowed his own tongue in an effort to keep his shock and horror from ringing out in the silent room.

Holy crap. This was not good.

Stretching his leg as far as he could without disturbing Lizette, he managed to get his foot on Drake’s ass and give him a shove, grateful he was still wearing his boots so there was no skin-on-skin contact.

But Johnny needed some serious help from his buddy.

And metal cutters.

He kicked Drake again, harder.

48 Hours Earlier

“I am here on behalf of the Vampire Alliance to collect the remains of Mr. Malone and dispose of his property in accordance with the Death Code. Please allow me full access to his personal belongings at this time. Your cooperation in resolving this matter is greatly appreciated.”

Johnny stared at the thin woman in front of him wearing a gray business suit, her hair in a tight bun, clipboard in hand. He listened to her speech, directed at his sister Stella, and was perhaps for the first time in his long life totally at a loss for words. “Um.”

“But he’s not dead,” Stella said with no small amount of bewilderment in her voice.

“I’m not dead,” Johnny parroted. Because he wasn’t. He may be dead like a vampire was dead, but he wasn’t for real dead, as in never-to-walk-the-earth-again dead.

“This is him,” Stella added, pointing to his living self. “Standing right here. Next to me.”

Stella had called Johnny over to the shotgun cottage on Burgundy Street in the French Quarter that she shared with his best friend, Wyatt Axelrod, because she had gotten a phone call requesting a meeting from the VA regarding Johnny’s death. Not the first death, back in ’28, but his second one, which he had faked six weeks earlier but had reneged on a few days later. Only it seemed the Vampire Alliance hadn’t gotten the memo that it was a joke. A lousy joke, he had to admit, but a joke nonetheless. And if this chick in front of them was any indication, the Vampire Alliance didn’t have much of a sense of humor.

“I am sorry, but that is not possible,” the woman said, her accent French, her manner calm and professionally polite. She wore designer glasses, and her dark brown eyes behind the lenses barely swept over him. Considering no vampire had bad eyesight, they were clearly intended to make a certain impression. “Johnny Malone is on the list, and so I must proceed accordingly.”

“I don’t care that he’s on ‘The List.’” Stella made air quotes as she spoke. “He’s not dead! It was just a simple misunderstanding.”

Nice of Stella to put it that way. Frankly, it had been a bumble-fuck on his part. Feeling pressured by a pregnant girlfriend, though he used that term loosely, and knowing full well that as a vampire he was shooting blanks and could not be the father, Johnny had gotten the incredibly stupid idea that it might be a spot of fun to fake his own death to shake her loose. Okay, so maybe it had been a bit cruel to put his sister and his friends through that, and maybe he would have been super pissed if someone had done that to him, but it had been an impulse. A very bad, very stupid impulse. He hadn’t thought it would result in all his friends getting shit-faced drunk at his wake and blacking out for an entire night. Nor had he thought it would result in Miss Paper Pusher showing up on Stella’s doorstep.

Not wanting to stress his sister out any more than he had already in the past few months, he decided he needed to be the one to deal with this little mix-up.

“I’m sorry, what was your name again?” he asked her.

“Lizette Chastain.”

It was a name for a silent film star, not this woman whose bun was wound too tight. Though she was attractive underneath the thick layer of boring, he had to admit that. She had long cheekbones and creamy skin that gave away her French heritage, and perfect, raspberry-stained lips that would form a perfect O while she was having an orgasm . . .


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