The Underworld (Chapter Three, page 1 of 11)

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The human-turned-demon, Deidre, awoke groggily. Her fangs had dug into her lower lip while she slept, and she tasted blood. The light, metallic scent made her stomach roar in a way that left her a little ill at the reminder of her newfound status as a demon bride. Pushing herself up from the cold, uneven stone floor, she struggled to see far into the cell in the dim light streaming in from the single window overhead.

Harmony and her cronies had knocked them out upon entering Death's underworld. She assumed they were in a prison somewhere. It was impossible to see how wide the room was through the darkness, but it was shallow, with the back wall about ten feet from a door that looked like wood and shone like polished stone.

Petrified wood. It was beautiful, or would be, if she were anywhere other than a dungeon. She shifted to lean against the back wall of the cell. Her head was pounding and her stomach cramping. With a small groan, she wrapped her arms around her belly and leaned over.

"Cramps are the first sign."

It took her a moment to process the male's voice.

Deidre straightened and squinted into the dark side of the cell. She heard chains rattle a moment before a lanky figure emerged far enough for her to see him. Tall and blond, the steely-eyed demon had fangs little longer than hers.

"Of what?" she asked.

"One of two things. You're either starving or spinning into bloodlust madness." He squatted, his distance from her enforced by the chains at his wrists and ankles. "My guess is starvation. You're a … new demon."

"How do you know that?"

His gaze swept over her. "Let's just say I know who you were." He motioned to the side of the cell opposite him.

She looked, noticing the jeans-clad legs for the first time.

"We can eat her," he offered, licking his lips.

"No," she replied with a glare.

"Shame. I think a former deity would taste good. Like chicken. Or cake."

"If you'd ever eaten either of those, you'd know they're too different to be compared."

He shrugged.

"Who are you?"

"Jared. Humble servant of your mate." The demon shifted to sit on his knees and haunches. "Hungry humble servant of your mate. I was supposed to be keeping an eye on a certain death dealer and ended up getting caught."

The cramps subsided. Deidre released her breath then crawled on her hands and knees to the unconscious woman whose looks were identical to hers. With hands that shook, Deidre checked the pulse of the woman who put her smack dab in the middle of Hell.

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