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Coverapb

Cover of A Perfect Blood

This book starts out with Rachel still trying to restore her life to normal after the battle with Ku'Sox in the last book. The Inderlander community has begrudgingly allowed her back into society after her defeat of Ku'Sox and publically removed her shunned status, but because she now claims to be a demon she has been declared dead in all government systems (as demons have no legal rights). Her driver's license, her car registration, and any other paperwork showing her as a citizen has been revoked. Each branch of government that could repair the paperwork directs her to another, and the FIB & the I.S. will not help her get any of it sorted out unless she provides them with a list of demon curses so they can decide which are legal and which are illegal. Rachel refuses to do so, rightly believing that they only want them so they can pin any demonic and demonic-seeming crime on her if they can't find the real culprit.

At the DMV Rachel desperately argues with the staff until she is called into the back, where she meets the living vampire Ninotchka Romana Ledesma (Nina). Nina tells Rachel that her master undead vampire (who works in the I.S.) would like a word. Nina channels the master vampire who will not share his name, but insists that they simply call him Nina. He informs Rachel that there has been a rash of murders that appear to have been commited by demons, and they want her input. Rachel agrees to lend her expertise to examining the latest crime scene on the condition that they restore her status as a citizen without the list of demon curses, and he agrees.

They go to a crime scene in the park, where a male witch has been killed and strung up using HAPA knots (a terrorist organization that wants to wipe out all Inderlanders). His body is grotesquely twisted and deformed, he even has hooves and appears to be half way to a demonic form. Trent is there, and Rachel realizes that they called him in to ask if Rachel was the one who committed the crime. Nina reveals this is the third such crime, all the victims have been witches. Nina also tells Rachel point blank that unless she catches the people responsible the I.S. will use her as a scape goat and pin the crimes on her, despite the fact that her demonic magic has been disabled by a mobius charm. The I.S. intends to use this to force Rachel into working the case, but Rachel fights back by calling in the FIB, yanking jurisdiction away from the I.S. (as the FIB has jurisdiction over any crime perpetrated by humans, and HAPA is entirely comprised of humans).

Later, Rachel mixes up locater charms for the I.S. & FIB to use to track the dead man's blood to try and find the killers before they managed to kidnap, mutate and murder another witch. While preparing them, Rachel notices that the hair Jenks stole from the crime scene (to help link the charms) smells of wine & salt. When she asks Jenks to smell it, he says it smells of wine, salt and strongly of meadow. As she throws the hair into the concoction, Rachel laments that she cannot invoke the spell with her demon blood, as high level spells cannot be activated with anything but pure witch blood. Rachel is suddenly struck by the thought that HAPA is trying to create a demon so they can use it's blood to fuel demonic curses and wipe out the Inderlanders, as a demon is considered a tool, so they would not necessarily feel as if they were violating their own rules by using them. She asks Ivy to review the information they have on the current victims, and learn that every single one was a carrier of Rosewood Syndrome. Rachel realizes that as she is a genuine demon because of surviving the Rosewood Syndrome, she will be high on their list of people to capture, and that she will have to take the case to give herself peace of mind.

Rachel brings up her concerns with Wayde, a Were bodyguard hired by her biological father Takata, believing that he cannot protect her. The two argue, and Wayde attempts to prove he is fit to protect her by dragging her outside to try and get her to get her pack tattoo (she'd been avoiding it). The two are greeted outside by Trent Kalamack, who mistakes Wayde for an attacker and knocks Wayde down with magic, before telling Rachel that he has come to the same conclusion about the Rosewood carriers and begs her to reconsider her mobius bracelet, saying he gave it to her to make a choice, but hiding behind it is causing others to have to pick up her slack and leaving her and those she would protect in danger. Rachel refuses, however, still scared of facing Al and the possibility of being forced to remain in the Ever After forever. Afterward, Rachel finally agrees to get the tattoo, and shows up at the tattoo parlor with Wayde & David Hue. David tells Rachel he wants her to get the tattoo so people will know she has the protection of a pack, as her inibility to use her demon magic worries him. He also informs her that all of the lawsuits against her have been declared void, so she doesn't have to worry about them anymore, as any actions a demon takes are considered the same as an act of nature in the law.

Later, while Rachel is playing hooky and skipping out on Wayde's attentive watch, she gets a call from Agent Glenn - the charmed locaters are working, and they have the next crime scene. It's the local museum, and they find that an original slave cabin located in the storage section of the museum has been tampered with, as well as that several of the museum's old machines used to identify slaves who had been held captive there via genetic markers have been stolen. While both the FIB & the I.S. inspectors check the area thoroughly, nobody but Rachel spots the demonically cursed area of concrete. When she has them dig it up, they discover the body of another unfortunate victim of HAPA, this time a woman, twisted once again into a half-demonic form. HAPA has succeeded in making the change so similar to that of the last person that his blood led them to her. This body is found with a sliver of a mirror that has human blood on it, which they know to be the captor's.

More to come!

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