Authors: Erin R Flynn
Tags: #Paranormal Romance
In My Dreams 2: Alone
Copyright © 2014 Erin R. Flynn
E-book ISBN: 978-1-940036-29-8
First E-book Publication: August 2014
Editing by Jae Ashley
Cover design by Heidi Sutherlin
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED: This literary work may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including electronic or photographic reproduction, in whole or in part, without express written permission.
All characters and events in this book are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead is strictly coincidental. It is fiction so facts and events may not be accurate except to the current world the book takes place in.
The author acknowledges the trademarked status and trademark owners of the following trademarks mentioned in this work of fiction:
Better Business Bureau
: Council of Better Business Bureaus, Inc.
: Bic Corporation
: CBS Broadcasting Inc.
: Costco Wholesale Membership, Inc.
: The CW Television Network
: The Coca-Cola Company
: eBay, Inc.
: Facebook, Inc.
: Twentieth-Century Fox Film Corporation
: Home Box Office, Inc.
: Inter-IKEA Systems B.V. Corporation
: Keurig, Inc.
: LoJack Operating Company, L.P.
: Castle Rock Entertainment
: NBC Universal Media, LLC
Nebraska Furniture Mart
: Nebraska Furniture Mart, Inc
: Nikon Corporation
: WGBH Educational Foundation
: Old Navy (Apparel) LLC
: Darden Concepts, Inc
: Corning Incorporated
Rise of the Guardians
: DreamWorks Animation L.L.C.
: Showtime Networks, Inc.
: Chicago Park District Corporation
: DC Comics General Partnership
: Target Brands, Inc.
The Biggest Loser
: Reveille LLC
: Bonanza Productions Inc.
: Intel Corporation
University of Illinois
: Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois
: United Parcel Service of America, Inc.
: CSC Brands LP
: ZippMark, Inc.
It was after midnight—much later than normal—when I finally walked into my bedroom and flipped on my closet light and TV to start my nightly routine. I headed back to the door to close and lock it but just as I touched the handle the air in the room changed. Glancing over my shoulder, I saw a haze come in through the screen.
Not a fog.
Not a mist.
The colors of that corner of the room were suddenly distorted as if they were hazy. Almost as if my contacts weren’t on my eyes or there was a film on them… But I hadn’t taken them out yet. I knew that. Just to make sure it wasn’t something on my contacts, I blinked, and when I opened my eyes again, a man was standing there.
And there was no godly way he’d gotten past me. I was a freak about checking the locks on doors, living by myself out in the middle of nowhere. I never left windows open that anyone could break into that wouldn’t make a ruckus. I glanced down the hall to where the kitchen was before I looked back to him, measuring the distance.
He tilted his head and studied me as he tugged on the sleeves of his jacket, making sure they were perfectly straight as if that was the priority after appearing from wherever. It was over a pristinely pressed Oxford white shirt that had one of those stylish collars and didn’t have a button. He wasn’t wearing a suit though, straight-legged dark jeans that looked made for his body, black belt with silver buckle that matched his round-toed boots.
“What do you keep that way that you are wondering if you can get to it before I could get to you?” he asked in a high-born sounding British accent. Yeah, I know that wasn’t the real term for it, I never claimed to have an ear for accents. He sounded more like a duke and not like Eliza Doolittle. That was all I knew.
“My car keys,” I lied. Well, technically they were, and if I could set off the alarm, that would make enough noise for someone to call the cops, or I could escape. But there was
way I’d retrieve the keys from my purse, go past the hallway again, down the stairs, out the locked door, up the front porch stairs, unlock the door, into my car, start it,
pull away without him getting me.
All while barefoot.
He smirked at me as his deep chocolate eyes twinkled with mirth. “Not the gun you keep in the kitchen drawer? An odd place for it by the way.”
“Burglars always look in the nightstand or bedroom. Who would ever look in the kitchen?” I mumbled as I closed my bedroom door and locked it. “Are you here to kill me?”
“No,” he hedged.
“Rob me? Maim me? Eat me because you’re clearly not human, seeing as you just came in through the window that has a screen and it’s still there.”
“None of the above,” he drawled.
“Wonderful. Then if you wouldn’t mind, can we continue this tomorrow? I’m exhausted.” I walked past him and into the bathroom, locking the door before turning on the water, so as to pretend I was taking out my contacts and doing a few other things. Then I peed, washed my hands, and came back out. I turned on
Rise of the Guardians
like normal, turned off my closet light, opened my can of Diet Sprite as I did every night, and climbed into bed.
“Are you always this rude to guests?” he asked, still not having moved from the first spot he’d shown up at.
“Guests are invited. If you want to be a guest, come back and knock on the door.”
“I did knock before. You shouted some threat out the window about using your gardening tools to sheer off my reproductive organs if I was your local prankster ditching you or something to that effect.”
“There are kids who keep playing
ding dong ditch
,” I explained. “They ring the bell and run.” I cleared my throat and spoke a little louder as I turned my head away from him. “Now please leave. You’re not a guest and you broke into my house. Just because you haven’t hurt me yet or—”
“Clever woman,” he hissed, suddenly on top of me and reaching to the nightstand where my phone was. I’d called 9-1-1 and put it on mute. He put it to his ear and smiled. “You’re lucky there is such bad cell service out here. The call dropped.”
“Fucking cell towers,” I groaned, rolling my eyes. “Fine, whatever. Can I just get some sleep? I’m exhausted.”
He studied me closely, not moving from on top of me as he pinned my hands next to my head. I stared at him, feeling as if I’d seen him before. “I read you weren’t feeling well online. You weren’t exaggerating. It’s not narcolepsy. You don’t randomly and inexplicably fall asleep without cause. You’re simply run-down all the time. You went to the doctor, yes?”
“It’s not my thyroid. That’s all I’ve had checked so far.” I shrugged, too tired to care how strange and intrusive this was. “I’m currently going with being burnt out with stress and grief.”
“Your dog and work problems. I am sorry for your loss.”
“I am a great fan of yours, Nina James,” he whispered as he leaned down and trailed his nose along my neck as if he was sniffing me. “The creativity in you is intoxicating. Let me help you, make you feel better.”
“I know you,” I muttered and then let out a hysterical giggle. “Elijah. Wait, his real name is Dave. No, Dan something.” I laughed louder and shook my head. “I’m sleeping. The guy from The Originals just flew in my window and joined me in bed. Great. Night.”
“My name is Conall.”
I glanced at the TV and realized the movie wasn’t distorted, and I remembered thinking that was one of the signs of being in a dream. A person couldn’t actually see stuff on a screen accurately. I shoved the man off me roughly and rolled from the bed, falling to the floor in a heap, twisting my ankle. He blinked at me as he sat up.
“You’re quite strong for a human.”
“Fear will do that,” I muttered, holding up my hand and counting my fingers. All five were there—no more or less. Not dreaming.
I scooted into my closet and pulled a promotional rack card I used for signing off the shelf and read it. I could. Not dreaming.
“This isn’t a dream,” I whimpered as I stared up at him. “You’re
“I am,” he chuckled as he easily slid out of my bed and squatted on the floor before me. “Nice of you to catch up.” He held out his hand, but I batted it away.
“Fine, I’m going to bed. You won’t be here when I get up.”
“But I will.”
“No. Leave my house.”
“Don’t be rude.”
before bed,” I snapped as I stood, wincing at the pain in my ankle. I hopped over to my bed, quickly taking out my contacts and not caring that they fell to the floor. There was no way I was making it to the bathroom again with the way my foot was feeling and how exhausted I was. “Get out.”
“I can help,” he cooed as he lifted me into bed. I didn’t even get a chance to ask before he put his finger to my mouth and pushed it past my lips. It took me a second to realize that there was blood on it and by then it was too late—it was under my tongue and there wasn’t any way I was spitting it back out.
. I rolled over and his finger slipped out of my mouth as I snuggled under the covers, hoping I was just hallucinating from something I’d eaten. That could happen, right? Extreme reaction to bad meat or something?
But it wasn’t. He was still there when I opened my eyes—staring at me.
And it wasn’t that actor. This guy was bigger. His shoulders broader, more muscular. Hair longer, hanging in his eyes and past his ears. I’m sure there were other differences as well, but it wasn’t like I had a side-by-side comparison opportunity right then.