Something from the second installment, Eternal Burns, Book II of the ETERNAL TRACES Series. It’s a single chapter to wet your whistle. Who says we can’t find lust in dark places with the supernatural, from the homeland of Africa to the hot steamy shores of Haiti? Enjoy Part I. (SPOILER ALERT)
Safe within the walls of Hatshepsut’s home in old Egypt, all the sisters and their mates along with the four tribal leaders, Seti, Thumtmose, Menes and Ahmose, and their spouses were called together into the private war room. NeiNei and Atem briefed them on their recent finds, the two stolen angels that belonged to the original ark and the burned down village in Ethiopia. They were not certain of the current location of the golden angels or Smenkhkara, but at least now they knew what they were searching for; they were on the hunt for the lost ark.
By the time Atem and NeiNei made it to Askum, Smenkhkara had nearly a two-day jump. He could have been anywhere in pursuit of the ark. The only sure sign they had to prove he did not have the ark was the absence of a major destruction. Clearly, if he possessed the ark in working order, he would have unleashed its power.
Back in Virginia, on the other side of the world using modern technology Deacon worked furiously tracing Smenkhkara’s next step as well. It was loose intel and luck that made the connections to Ethiopia. Smenkhkara had no history, and there was no baseline to compare his life to understand his next actions. Initially, Deacon used the new facial software to start a baseline, but the pop-ups were so random, and in some cases they were too old to be of relevant use. Yet finding Smenkhkara became Deacon’s number one mission. After he received a brief back from Atem, it became clear to Deacon that Smenkhkara was a threat to the security of the United States.
Somehow he had to figure a way to conduct the research without alerting anyone else to the situation. Asking for help to search for a 3,000-year-old vampire who is suspected of being a threat to national security was like asking for immediate retirement. So he had to personally handle Smenkhkara’s background investigation, and when he could afford to task out certain elements, Deacon created a cover story, code name Archangel.
Deep in the desert, as the night started to settle, this was the purpose of Hatshepsut’s meeting with her leaders, the same mission as Deacon. Tonight she would ask the spirits to grant her sight to find Smenkhkara. It was a difficult spell to cast. It required more energy than she alone possessed. Hatshepsut had to entice the spirit world to provide her with its vision. Her strength was not enough to tempt the spirits, but perhaps the power of lust could entice them and grant her one wish: her desire to see Smenkhkara’s current location.
The four tribal leaders, their spouses, the two sisters, Meryt and NeiNei with their lovers Atem, and Rene assembled around the flame pit. The flames of the fire reflected from everyone’s eyes back to Hatshepsut. Once again the white linen curtains that hung along the wall moved with the night breeze. Hatshepsut’s four drummers lined the far wall, sitting in between the curtains. She nodded to them, and they began to play.
Surprisingly, Meryt was standing. She had healed quickly from her wounds. She was still tender, and a little apprehensive about the clothing Hatshepsut had requested for the night. NeiNei stood next to her in a matching gold linen wrap that hung low around her hips and with just enough material to barely cover her lowermost. Meryt and NeiNei also wore gold-laced wraps that scarcely secured their breasts in place. The intricate lace was practically see-through. Both women wore their hair loose and curly, hanging down past their shoulders. Hatshepsut and the other women wore similar attire in different colors.
As the drums played, Hatshepsut spoke in a low but strong rhythmic voice.
“This is the dance of enticement.” Her hips swung deliberately and slowly to the rhythm as she lightly shifted her weight from left to right in the sand. “I need you all to follow the beat. Let it move you. Allow the beat to draw on your strengths and draw on each other’s passion. For there is more power in many versus one.”
Hatshepsut stopped in front of Senunmut and ran her fingers lightly across his golden, dark-brown chest. Their eyes locked and flashed red before she turned away, facing the rest.
“I need to feel your power of arousal and lust. It’s one of the most intoxicating powers. No human, spirit, or god can turn his head in denial. I want to offer it to the spirit world in the hope that the spirits will accept it and grant me the power of sight. So please follow me as we dance.”
Hatshepsut clapped her hands together above her head two times as if casting a spell, spun around, and took one step back, falling into her lover’s arms. Her longtime partner and friend caught her by the shoulders and held her for a long moment, entangled in the embrace of lust. Senunmut slowly breathed in her scent and returned her to a standing position never letting her out of his steady sight. They both clapped strongly and repeated the steps again, moving to the right while circling the flames.
The once large room shrank down to the size of the fire with barely enough room to dance around, or at least that was how Meryt felt. The temperature increased by ten degrees and she felt the closeness of others.
All six couples followed suit in the dance of enticement to the rhythm of the drums, two quick claps, a full spin, and a step back. Rene caught Meryt and Atem caught NeiNei and so on. There was an exchange in glances between the couples followed by two deliberate claps and steps to the right. Again another spin, a fallback step, and an exchange in gazes between lovers followed by two strong claps.
The drummers originally played together as one, but as the room grew in heat, one drummer at a time deviated from the original. The new beat seemed to come from the building of lust. The temper of each beat was felt accordingly to the body part it was created for. Every touch generated a new beat and a growing need.
At first, Meryt felt silly and out of place; they were in need of critical intelligence, and time was short. This was not the time for an ancient dance of enticement. This reminded Meryt of the time Hatshepsut had shown her the army of soldiers who were to help defeat Smenkhkara. The soldiers’ weapons consisted of spears, swords, and shields; the perfect weapons for the twentieth century battle? ‘Not!’… Meryt felt then as she felt now: totally outdated.
Clap, clap . . . spin . . . fallback step . . . exchange glances . . . stand back up . . . clap, clap.
In that moment, the clapping stirred something raw and low in her belly. Meryt began to feel the heat from the flame tickling her skin. Clap, clap . . . spin.
Meryt stepped back, and Rene was there to catch her fall. He leaned in close, careful not to touch her skin with his nose, and breathed in fully. Meryt felt every hair along her neck pull in his direction; even the tiny scars from Rene’s bite tingled. Rene returned her to her feet never losing eye contact. Clap, clap.
As the group stepped to the right, followed by the women spinning around, the drummers continued to play louder with each beat created to touch a new body part. The music was drawn forward from the background, taking over the rhythm of their hearts. Tap . . . tap . . . tap . . . boom . . . boom.
Spin again and the heat continued to build. Clap . . . clap.
Meryt stepped back and fell into Rene’s arms. Her body remembered her lover’s touch, and she arched instinctively, anticipating his welcomed breath. Meryt closed her eyes as she enjoyed her lover’s presence.
Once on her feet again, clap, clap. Step to the right, spin and then fall back. Rene’s touch sent cool chills down her spine, which was a contract to heat it left behind. The place that stirred before was now boiling over with desire. Meryt opened her eyes to find Rene’s blue eyes filled with fiery red lust. Boom! Boom!