The Lazarus Child - Blood Riders Book 3

To save his missing daughter a distraught slayer must venture deep into the heart of darkness

Legendary vampire hunter Anton Yoska is on the edge, tormented by the rumour that the precious child he once thought dead is still alive and lost in a world of monsters.

One creature alone knows for sure what happened to Gretchen, but Terek Modjeski won’t divulge his secret - revelling in the twisted power over his long-time foe.

Despairing and drinking heavily, Anton stumbles from near disaster to near disaster as he puts his team in jeopardy, testing their friendship and loyalty to snapping point.

Only one diabolical solution is possible - to confront Terek in his maximum security cell and force the bloodsucker to end his game of cat and mouse. But making the cunning infernal talk will mean employing brutal methods that go against every code Anton has ever lived by, forcing him to become as much of a demon as the leeches he hunts.

Face to face with the evil, taunting vampire, the desperate slayer takes a decision that will change his destiny forever - sending him hurtling into danger to confront a terrifying truth about his lost child that risks not only his sanity but the future of mankind.

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In this extract, Crown Prince Leopold ruler of Transylvania is about to embark upon a hot air balloon trip organised by his wife Stephanie. But events are about to take an unexpected turn.

 Leopold fought the urge to grin like a stupid schoolboy given a bag of candies. Ever since witnessing the mass ascent just outside Paris he’d yearned to climb aboard on one of these wondrous machines and drift away into the heavens.

 Stealing a glance at his consort’s smug expression he conceded: “Very well, I’ll admit it. You were right. You are always right, damn it.”

“Stand back please,” one of the roustabouts shouted, waving at the observers to make room for the basket to touch down unhindered.

Now it was on the ground, Leopold saw that there was no door or flap in the heavy-duty wicker basket, no opening at all. The pilot had a small stepladder fastened to the inside, which he was clambering up, while one of his men placed a similar set of steps against the outside.

“I’m sorry, your Highness, but you’ll have to climb up to get on board,” the pilot informed him. “My men will assist you.”

One reached out to take the Crown Prince’s arm, but Leopold flashed him a warning glance. “Do not touch me,” he said levelly. “I am more than capable of achieving this unaided.”

He motioned to his wife. “You may assist the Crown Princess,” and gestured for her to go first. She mouthed: “No. It’s your birthday. For this one time, I shall bow in deference to you.”

He bowed back in gratitude.

Placing his foot on the first step, he propelling himself upwards. The ladder rocked from side to side, but he managed to keep his balance, feeling more confident on the second step.

Turning to the massed throng, he gave them a confident smile. Which instantly evaporated, as he saw the sudden movement – a glimpse of a single figure pushing through the crowd; a figure raising his right arm, and levelling a flintlock.

Instinctively, Leopold began to duck down as the gun fired, the muzzle exhaling a puff of acrid smoke. He felt his feet go from under him, the ladder toppling to the side. A heartbeat later, a metal sphere whizzed over his shoulder, pinging as it punched through the canvas canopy, leaving a ragged six-inch hole.

The next thing Leopold knew his world had turned into a sea of flame as the balloon exploded with a deafening roar.


Author Bio  – 
Jay Raven is the author of Gothic chillers and historical horror reminding readers that the past is a dangerous place to venture, full of monsters and murderous men. He blames his fascination with vampires, witches and werewolves on the Hammer Horror films he watched as a teenager, but living in a creepy old house on the edge of a 500-acre wood may have something to do with it.

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