Before Dawn
Before Dawn

The Hunters, Book 1

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Genre: Paranormal Romance
Length: Novella
Release date: 10 January 2012

WARNING: Graphic language and explicit sex scenes (M/F)

Before Dawn was previously published in an altered form by Ellora's Cave in 2008.


Mercy Jansen dreams of erotic interludes with a man whose face she never sees—and she always awakens before the scraping of sharp teeth along her skin turns into something more dangerous.

Even while she questions her subconscious mind, a mundane event sets her on a collision course with a man who makes her knees go weak—and proceeds to turn her preconceived notions of reality upside-down and inside-out by pulling her into a shadowy, violent world where her dreams threaten to become an all-too-real nightmare.


“I’m sorry, but guests are not allowed in this area.”

He moved deeper into the office. “You sound a little hoarse,” he said, ignoring her statement, and held out a full champagne flute. “Take this.”

Mercy automatically accepted the offering. “Thank you, Mr.—?”

“Edmond,” he said, a hint of an accent flavoring the name. It sounded French, which suited the name and his Gallic coloring.

“Thank you, Mr. Edmond.”

He shook his head but his hair barely moved. “Just Edmond.”

Like just Madonna? she wanted to ask but refrained from doing so.

He lifted his own flute, tipping it toward her. Feeling awkward, she touched her flute to his, very aware of his eyes following her every movement. Not wanting to insult a man who’d forked over three hundred dollars for a ticket to the fundraiser and a potential donor, Mercy took a sip, enough to coat her mouth and her esophagus.

And squeezed her eyes shut as her head swam and her hand faltered, tilting the flute dangerously. She really should’ve eaten something beyond the banana and carton of cherry yogurt at lunch.

A hand caught hers. She had the impression of icy coldness a heartbeat before warmth washed over her like rain. The champagne flute was rescued from her unsteady fingers. Despite the voluntary darkness, her head continued to bob. Her hand reached back and found the solid surface of her desk.


That compelling voice filled her head, dampening the waves. She exhaled, unaware she’d been holding her breath until that moment. A heavy, artificial scent filled her nostrils, and she turned her head away. Satin brushed the naked skin of her legs, cool and slick. His cape. Fingertips skimmed the curve of her cheek, the line of her throat, the slope of her exposed shoulder. She couldn’t protest, couldn’t stir herself from the lassitude that trapped her in its silken grip. Not even long enough to lift her lashes, let alone break away.

The exploration continued, soft and gentle and warm…and somehow familiar.

There was nothing to fear from him. That thought whispered through her mind like a tendril of smoke.

Mercy let herself drift, let the sensual pleasure of his touch lull her.

The hand holding hers drew it upward until her palm met a chest that felt like marble under the layer of cloth. Soft lips grazed her jaw line. He whispered her name again. From the jumbled, hazy mess of her thoughts, one question emerged.

“What are you?” she breathed.

Lips brushed her earlobe. “The man of your dreams.”

Copyright © 2008, 2012 by Ann Bruce. All rights reserved.


Expand Reviews

"This short, sexy romp has a fast-paced plot and some high-voltage fight scenes."
Romantic Times BOOK Reviews,

"In a world where paranormal seems to rule the bookstores, Ann Bruce has shown that you can still write a terrific, unique vampire story."
Fallen Angel Reviews, 5

"Before Dawn is a smoldering heatfest of erotic dreams, sexy men and terrifying vampires and I loved every word."
Simply Romance Reviews, A

"An entertaining romp."
Mrs. Giggles, 82

"The love scenes are very intense and have an overall darkness that will make your toes curl."
Romance Junkies, 4

"A compelling story that readers are sure enjoy."
RRT Erotic

"Before Dawn is uniquely different for a vampire tale...[and] is sure to be enjoyed by all fans of vampire stories."
Reader Views

"A tension laden tale, filled with an equal dose of sensuality. I was completely enthralled from page one."
The Romance Readers Connection, 4

"A page-turner that will keep you reading until the end."
Night Owl Romance, 4

"A suspenseful romance, complete with a dark, brooding hero."
Sensual eCataromance, 4