Author: J.A. Huss





The old witch is dying and that means he needs a new one.

It also means that the protection I’ve had since birth is over now. The spell is dying right along with my grandma. The vampire will come for me.

He must come for me.

He will hunt me to the ends of the earth.

He will hunt me, and find me, and capture me, and drink me.

Over, and over, and over again until I am nothing but a dying woman, in a dirty nightgown, lying alone on a bed, in a room that smells like death.

Because if the old witch is dying, then he needs a new one.

And that’s me.

This is my curse.

I am the vampire’s power.

I am the vampire’s strength.

I am the vampire’s food.

And he is very, very hungry.


Blood Lovers is a dark, seductive journey into a world where the blood runs black, the dreams are purple, and the demons aren’t just dangerous, they’re beautiful. Masterfully told by New York Times bestselling author, JA Huss—it’s a book that will change the lore forever.






If the old witch is dying, then he needs a new one.



It’s New Year’s Eve, my grandma is dying, and there is a party going on all around me. The music is so loud the deck of the old, wooden porch is quaking beneath my boots and clumps of snow are sliding off the severely slanted roof with every beat. My hand is on the doorknob of the old cabin, ready to turn it and step inside, but I take a moment. My heart is thumping inside my chest with such vigor I have a sudden fear that I will pass out and wake up with the mouth of the vampire on my neck.

It’s not an irrational fear. It’s a very real possibility. Because I am a Black witch, and I have the Black blood flowing through my veins, and he has been hunting me for this reason since I was born.

You’re fine, Syrsee. I say this over and over in my head. You’re fine.

I’m not, really. I’m in a lot of danger pretty much twenty-four seven when I am outside the Guild walls. But I only have two choices here. Either go inside and say my goodbyes or let my grandma slip away into her dark hell, alone and afraid.

And it’s not just letting her slip away alone and afraid. It’s letting her slip away thinking I hated her. Which I did, but I’m not sure I still do.

Ten years is a long time.

That’s how long it’s been since I’ve seen or spoken to her.

She came to my graduation from the Guild School, which is a boarding school for Guild members, obviously. They let me stay after my grandma abandoned me with them when I was seven.

Maybe ‘abandon’ is a strong word. She did take me there. She did arrange things. She did explain who and what I was so I didn’t have to hide anymore. So maybe ‘abandoned’ is a strong word.

Then again, when you’re seven and your grandma leaves you with people who have been tasked with killing you and your kin for hundreds of years, maybe it’s not.

Obviously, they didn’t kill me because I’m still here. They gave me a dorm room and an education. They gave me a home, actually. They gave me food, and friends, and adults who cared about what I was thinking and feeling. Hell, they even paid for my freaking college.

And she did that. She gave me up so I could have all that.

She saved me. Through some truce, and some magic, and, let’s face it, her own dark will—she saved me that day she walked out.

Because if ever there was a girl who needed saving, it’s me. I am made of darkness. Born of it. The Black blood flowing through my veins says this is true.

I should be dead. I should be rotting in Hell with the rest of my people. Or, at the very least, I should be living in squalor with the vampire’s teeth on my neck. I should be all these things, but I’m not.

And Grandma did that.

The intellectual side of me understands this. So I guess it wasn’t being dropped off with the Guild that drove us apart—it was all the stuff that came before that.

Here is what I have always known:

One. We are witches, but not the bookstore kind. That’s what Grandma used to call them. The ones who play with pretend magic, and use tarot cards, or incense, or candles.

We are an entirely different kind of witch. We can’t just… stop burning candles and incense and decide to be something else one day. It’s in our blood. Literally. Our blood is black with the darkness and the evil that stalks the edges of this world.

Two. The evil inside us can do powerful, powerful things and can be stolen if one knows how to take it. Because isn’t that always how it goes in this wicked world? Even if one is not a witch like me, everyone is feeding off something. People eat, don’t they? Everything eats.

Survival is evil, in and of itself.

And it’s justified because it’s survival.

It’s a circular thing. A cycle, like everything else. Survival and evil feed each other. They feed off each other. It’s a sick, dark, corrupt symbiotic relationship that tells you everything you need to know about the realm we all live in.

Three. Everything has a place or it wouldn’t exist. Even the darkness. Even the evil. Even me.

I know all this. Have known all this.

I know what I am, I know what I’m running from, and I know where I will end up.

Nothing I do can change any of that.

But being told this and being confronted with it in real life are two entirely different things. And maybe I overreacted. Perhaps I went a little too far when I walked away for ten years.

But when your grandma shows up for your high school graduation and tells you… things… things you never asked to know, and then you curse her to Hell and back and banish her from your life forever because this is the moment that you figure out just how evil your people were—are…

I was eighteen. This was my justification for a while. This is how eighteen-year-old girls act. Or… overreact, as it may be.

But the things Grandma did weren’t small infractions. They were mortal sins. Sins stacked upon sins. She killed my mother just moments after I was born, but that’s not the worst part. The worst part is why. She killed her to steal her magic. Because we are evil, and made of darkness, and just… fucked up.

And that’s not even all of it, either. Killing my mother after I was born was bad enough, but she did things to my mother before I was born too.

I couldn’t deal. I was out. I had a new life, with new friends—well, one friend—and a future. The Guild paid for me to go to college. After taking care of me for a decade, they didn’t just kick me out and say, “Good luck!” They held my hand and gave me a gentle push, setting me up for success.

Grandma didn’t do that. She dropped me off and didn’t come back until graduation.


Another ten years have passed since then and I work for the Guild full-time now. Not as a Guardian like my best friend, Zusi, but as a librarian in their considerable vault of knowledge. I am not a true Guild member, just their token charity case. But there are worse things than being a charity case in the most comprehensive collection of secret teachings on the planet.

I am not one of them, but I am… well—not part of things, per se, and not really in the game, but I’m on the sidelines. Watching the plays. Observing the strategies. Propping up the star quarterback, keeping score, and passing out encouragement and water.

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