As the most feared group of assassins within the cluster, the Black Dragons rarely have reason to worry. When their reputation is threatened by outsiders, it’s up to Selena Olian, prostitute by day, Viper by night, to stop them. However, she discovers that even the most talented of assassins sometimes fail…
Please enjoy this first taste of the universe that is The Thousand Suns Saga.
Selena turned and looked at the young man sprawled out on his belly on the bed beside her. She figured him no older than thirty. Black hair pooled down the back of his neck, stopping at his shoulders. His fully bare body shone in the faint illumination from the overhead lights. A hint of black against his right shoulder caught her attention. She moved closer to investigate. It was a tattoo, no bigger than the span of the circle made between her forefinger and thumb. She was able to make out a serpent, roughly inked, mouth holding its tail. Selena jerked back and let out a soft shriek.
The sound woke her companion, causing him to open dark brown eyes and peer at her. “What’s wrong?” he asked in his smoky voice.
“Your t-tattoo…” she replied from behind her hand.
He looked over his shoulder. “What? This? Don’t be afraid. I’m not going to hurt you.”
Slowly, she lowered her hand. “Y-you’re not…?”
He turned on his side to face her, a light smirk on his face. “Assassins don’t always have to kill people, do they? After all, how would anyone know about the tattoo of the Black Dragons if someone wasn’t left alive to see it?”
“I’m glad you’re not going to kill me.”
“You’re too good a lay to off. I might even come back… provided you don’t tell anyone of my… affiliations.” He gave her a sly smile.
She shook her head and offered him a wan smile in return. “I wouldn’t do that.”
“Good,” he replied, running a hand down her side.
“Do you want a glass of wine?”
He remained silent for a moment. “Sure.”
Selena turned to the ornate but tarnished silver tray on her bedside table and lifted the decanter full of wine. She pulled the stopper and poured some of the liquid into two waiting bell-shaped glasses. She turned then, offering him one.
Her companion took the goblet and raised it in toast to her. With a coquettish smile, she raised her own in return. He lifted it to his lips, knocking back its entire contents. Selena lifted hers and tilted it as if drinking, watching him.
Within moments, her companion started coughing. He lifted his hands as if to stop himself from choking, but his limbs didn’t seem to be following his commands. Selena remained calm as she set her untouched glass back down on the tray beside the decanter before turning back to him. “Works fast, doesn’t it?”
He couldn’t move more than a few shudders, and his throat still worked to try to swallow the liquid instead of letting it slide into his lungs. The look in his eyes pleaded for her to save him.
Selena gave him a predatory smile and moved across the bed to give him assistance. It wouldn’t do him any good, but it would reduce suspicion of her involvement. “You should have known better than to claim to be a Black Dragon,” she purred into his ear. “We don’t particularly appreciate imposters. Oh, and for future reference, our dragons have wings.”