Yesterday I spoke about milking a scene, and suspense can really come at any moment in your book. It can even come during a moment where one character is persuing another for their affections. There need not be that much danger in the scene. But the consequences might be something to consider for your MC.
Thus, since I'm working on Beyond the Black Veil, and came across such a scene, I thought I would share it. Here Sabrina is cornered by a delicious guy (naturally). His name is Drachen, and he's a young vampire, and she can't dare let him bite her. She realizes too late that her gloves are on, and even though his powers are not very strong, he is hard to resist.
Let's see how this scene plays out. Watch how I've used the 4 basic principals in this scene: ACTION, THOUGHTS,DIALOGUE, DESCRIPTION.
I stared at him for a moment, utterly astounded by the story. Finally coming out of my daze, wondering fitfully if Drachen hadn't somehow mesmerized me—which was silly, but then I realized my gloves were still on from dinner. My ring would be of no use to me covered in the company of a vampire. I realized he was trying to thrall me.
I blinked, glanced away from his eyes. My actions seemed to break his spell. “That is as wild a story as I've ever heard. But believable,” I said. “Thank you for clearing that up.”
He leaned in a little closer, the fingers of his other hand came up to graze my face, and I ducked away from it and in one smooth move I stood behind him. He spun around, slightly amazed that I'd moved so quickly—me too—but the chase seemed to delight him because he smiled wide, the rim of white teeth just peeking below his luscious lips.
“Thing is, I can't read a vampire,” I said, trying to change the subject.
“Neither can I,” he admitted. “No matter what. I could never read father's mind.”
“So, you are telepathic?” I guessed.
“Yes,” he said, one brow arched as his eyes glittered from the hurricane lanterns stationed on a sideboard nearby. “But you knew that.”
“I know what you want, Sabrina.”
He advanced on me. It somehow didn't surprise me that all Drakulya males seemed to be very aggressive and sexually assertive. I knew if I wanted to, I'd be in bed with Drachen in two minutes flat, but I saw in a flash that he would bite me. I couldn't let him do that. Besides, with the creature wanting to come out of me, I might... hurt him. I didn't want to hurt Drachen. He seemed so thin and frail, unlike his huskier cousin/nephew, Jett. I knew that I would most likely bite back and already I felt the claws forming at the tips of my fingers, ripping holes through the fingertips of the gloves I wore. I felt slightly panicked. The last time this happened with a vampire in my room, I had attacked him. But then, it was Lief—and he'd deserved it.
The thought of Jett touching me earlier sizzled through me. Eyes slipping shut, a sudden exhalation escaped me with the very longing for Jett taking me on that couch, earlier. The episode whirled in my head, making me crazy, until I backed into a solid object—the door to Ali's bedroom—snapping my eyes wide to find Drachen in front of me again, hands clutching the door's frame on either side of my shoulders. Fantastic.
Drachen, who was four or five inches taller than me, caged me with his arms, which didn't at all feel frail. Intent on thralling me completely, his head ducked low to bring his lips closer to mine, I turned my head to avoid his lips, but that turned out to be a stupid move, because now his delicious lips were on my neck. Remaining absolutely still, I swallowed, feeling my heart thrum through my veins, and I was certain his sensitive lips detected that wonderful beat just there at the opening of his mouth. His tongue slithered out and wetly teased my skin there. A thrill went through me, and, yes, my lower regions came to attention.
“What I wouldn't give to taste you, Sabrina,” he said low, his breath feathering along my neck. I glanced up at him as his head moved back slightly. Lips parted somewhat dramatically and I watched with morbid fascination the fangs actually grow, and inch down from his jaw. Drachen was less human than he'd pretended. His secret was revealed. Oh, crap.
“So, you're more vampire than the others even know,” I accused, feeling as though my heart was about to hammer its way out of my chest. I had not allowed myself to get into such a situation in a while, and these confrontations with vampires scared the crap out of me.
The Dagger of Delphi was eager to do a job it was meant to do, as it nearly slapped the side of my thigh, and I became aware that I might now have a bruise for the beating it was giving me. I had to hold it down against my thigh, wondering fitfully, how everyone would react to Drachen's being a vampire with a dagger stuck in his chest. My dagger.
“Mmm, keep it a secret? Just between me and you?” His face moved in again.
I thrust my hands against his flat chest, and saw that the claws had bitten through the material of my gloves. Oops. Drachen looked down to see what had become of my gloved fingertips.
“As Joha might say: This is an interesting development.” His smile grew, and those fangs turned what would have been a melting smile into something more sinister.
“Looks like the wolf is wanting to come out tonight.” I tapped my claws on his chest, feeling the collar bone thump as I did.
“Looks like it,” he said, eyes shifting up to engage my gaze. “You're not quite everything you've been telling us. Werewolf?”
“Not fully,” I said. “And you might as well quit trying to pretend you're not at least ninety percent vampire.”
He smirked, then chuckled low. “How would you like to become my consort?”
I pushed him a little more, showing him my strength. “No, Drachen.”
“My room. Come and check it for Dreadfuls?” he suggested, thick brows wiggled.
“Nice try. There are no more Dreadfuls in this house,” I said, reading the leering look on his face. Vampire males were very possessive. Once a vampire had marked you, you were his, no matter who said different. Since I was already marked by Vasyl, Drachen was the last vampire I would let sink his teeth into me, in this, or any other world.
“I'm turning in,” I said on a yawn as I moved my hand behind my back and opened Ali's door, then eased backward into the room. “Good night Drachen.”
Unable to hold his serious mien, he broke out into a husky chuckle. “You're sure you wouldn't like to join me in mine?” he asked, not moving from the doorway.
“No,” I said slowly shutting the door on him.
“Good night, Sabrina,” he said. “Sweet dreams.”
“G'night,” I said as I closed the door. Turning around, I plunged inside the darker room.
“Sabrina?” A soft knock on my door made me twirl. I opened it a few inches and peeked out. A flaming candelabra held in his hand made me blink and pull back a little. Shadows produced by the candlelight shifted and jumped across his face giving it more allure than before.
“Oh!” My gaze shifted from his face in amber candlelight to the candelabra.
“You may need this. It's pretty dark in there.”
“Right.” I noted that the candelabra was made of gold. How good of Drakulya to make sure no silver would come into contact with anyone who may be a vampire—or a werewolf.
“Thanks,” I said as I took it from him.
“You are most welcome.”
His eyes were like a molten gold in this light. “I'm just down from you, remember. If you need anything.” Then he caught himself. “But you knew that.”
I smiled and closed the door, I felt less than comforted; I couldn't find a key in the key hole to lock it. Strange as that was, I wasn't too upset about it. I placed the candelabra on the mantle and found the fire was down to coals. Finding the wood pile, I moved the screen away from the fireplace and fed the coals more of the quartered logs. In a moment the fire licked at the dry split wood and flames danced along the wood. After replacing the screen, I warmed my hands while kneeling before it. My eyes went to the tips of my claws which had ripped through the ends of my gloves. Rolling my eyes, I pulled them off. It would seem that I was stuck in this in-between stage of my were-creature. I would not go any further, apparently. I wondered if tonight was the full moon, rather than last night, when I'd thought it was.
Not certain what to do, as if I could do anything about it—I took in my surroundings.
© 2012 Lorelei Bell