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Dying to Date

By:Victoria Davies

Chapter One

There comes a time in every immortal’s life when you wonder if the universe is screwing with you.

Today was that day.

“Not a single decent match in all of New York City?” Melissa asked in disbelief.

Abbey shook her head. “I ran the search twice. Maybe we need to expand your dating criteria?”

“You know how long I’ve waited to use this dating agency,” she said. “And now you’re telling me I’m the only vampire within the city limits who breaks your fancy matching algorithm?”

“It’s not that you have no matches,” Abbey tried. “Just nothing higher than the recommended 75 percent cut off.”

Looked like the bad luck that had been following her for decades had struck again.

Melissa collapsed back in her chair and rubbed the bridge of her nose. Fated Match was the premier dating agency for supernaturals on the east coast. She had come to them because, like many of her kind, she was ready to settle down and find her mate, that one perfect person meant to spend eternity by her side.

Except she apparently didn’t have one.

“You know the match rating is just a guideline. I can set you up with one of the lower pairings if you want. There was a nice warlock who matched you at 67 percent.”

She looked across the untidy desk at her friend. Abbey had only come into her life because of her quest to use this agency. Her father had been skeptical about the possibilities of matchmaking, but he’d quickly changed his tune when he’d fallen head over heels for the woman in front of her now. Who knew this little human would be able to tame her ancient sire?

Since that fateful meeting she’d seen the two of them together time and again, seen the unconditional love shining out of their eyes, and she wanted that for herself.

“My match with Lucian was in the forties,” Abbey reminded her. “According to the algorithm we should never have gotten together. Sometimes you can’t put all your trust in the system.”

Abbey’s romance may have broken all the rules, but Melissa knew she wouldn’t have the same luck. Her life as a vampire had been one long list of poor decisions.

“What do you recommend?” she asked with a sigh.

“Well, we’ve got you on the silver package right now. Access to the internet database, personal interviews with yours truly, and three handpicked blind dates. We could up you to our gold membership. That adds five more pre-selected dates, an extended three years of access, and boosts your profile to the top of the search page. It’ll stream more traffic toward you.”

“Fine,” she said, handing over her credit card. “Though I have to say, those last few ‘handpicked’ dates left a lot to be desired.”

“I swear I thought the merman was a good candidate.”

“He lived in the freaking Hudson, Abbey. How would that work?”

Her friend sighed. “He said he’d gotten his legs and was trying to build a life on land.”

“For a few hours a day. He had to keep his gills wet.”

“So he fudged his application. I’ll do better next time. We’re running a big campaign right now to bring in more members. Maybe your mate just hasn’t signed up yet.”

“Or maybe he’s on the other side of the world.”

Or maybe she just didn’t have one.

“My boss is thinking about opening another office on the west coast. Once it’s up and running, you’ll have access to supernaturals across the entire country.”

And in the meantime she’d continue on as she had these past decades, running her charities, enjoying the occasional one-night stand, and envying her friends their happy endings.

“There’s got to be one man in this damned city who’s worth dating.”

“What about humans?” Abbey offered.

Melissa glanced at her friend. She might love her dearly but she didn’t have her father’s restraint. Dating a human with all that lovely warm blood would be one long exercise in resisting temptation, and she had never been big on self-denial. No, she needed an immortal that could handle her superior strength, not to mention the occasional bouts of bloodlust.

“I don’t think so,” she replied, not wanting to offend.

“Well, let’s look at your profile preferences.” Abbey’s fingers flew over the keyboard of the ancient desktop computer perched on the side of her desk. Though the matchmaker had managed to nab one of the most powerful vampires in the city, she was still cooped up in a tiny office that sported only one small window and an ugly metal filing cabinet.

Melissa knew she’d get claustrophobic working in there every day, but Abbey seemed to love it. Lord knew Lucian had the money to ensure the mortal never worked another day in her life, but Abbey refused to leave. She liked having a hand in bringing people together.