A Tale of a Tail
Published by: eXtasy Books
Author : Paula Calloway
Word Count :6799
Publication Date :2013-05-20
Series : #
Heat Level :
- Product Code: 978-1-4874-1645-4
Sea green eyes lure a brokenhearted woman too far over the ship railing, and a headlong plunge wraps her in the embrace of a merman.
When her fiancé breaks off their engagement, Miranda goes on their pre-planned cruise, but every turn reminds her it’s a lover’s cruise.
Swimming too close to the ships is asking for trouble, but Reef can’t resist the temptation leaning his way.
When a fall lands Miranda in the ocean’s grip, can Reef entice her to stay or will she flee to a departing ship when given a chance?
Reef inhaled the seawater through his nose so his aquatic form separated and removed the water from the oxygen. Unable to deny how sweet the unconscious woman in his arms tasted, he slid his tongue along hers in a deliberate caress and held her body the length of his while they briefly spiraled downward.
He breathed oxygen into her lungs until the ship passed overhead. A swift, hard flick of his tail brought them to the surface. With their kiss broken, he released her nose and gazed at the beauty he never intended to steal but wasn’t certain how to return at the moment.
* * * *
Miranda shivered at the gentle brush of a forefinger across her lips, the warmth of a powerful arm under her back, and a large hand on her waist. Her eyelids fluttered open. Something shielded her face from the sun. “What—why—” She gawked at the shrinking ship. “Wait!”
A soft male voice answered, “They are unaware you fell, and I doubt their ability to hear you.”
She spun, stared for mere seconds, then splashed water in his face. With a hard kick, she put distance between them, flipped onto her belly, and sought one good stroke. All forward momentum ended when a hand seized her ankle and tugged enough to hinder her escape. “Get away from me.”
“Stop floundering, water sprite, for I can and will swim circles around you if need be.”
Dragged backward, flipped onto her back and released, Miranda gawked at the colorful being. The man’s effortless floating assured her his water ability equaled nothing less than a skilled athlete on land. Her gaze drifted down to a bare, muscled chest and powerful arms. If they met on the ship and his color was normal, it might be a different story. Here in the water with bluish skin, he unsettled her every nerve. She narrowed her eyes and realized her vision from the railing now floated mere feet from her.
Her gaze settled on his face. She swallowed hard at his handsomeness. His raised eyebrow earned her shiver. “I’m not dreaming, am I?” At his headshake, she dug her arms deep beneath the liquid surface and pushed against the water. She drifted back another foot and squinted to peer below the surface for a moment. The slow smirk on his face filled her belly with butterflies. “You’re a…merman. Oh, my…”
He folded his arms over his chest. “Atlantean.”
“Um, no, not possible. Atlanteans were highly intelligent bipedal people.” Miranda lifted her chin when a wave splashed her face. Kept afloat by her waving arms and kicking legs, she continued her struggle and backed away. “Your white hair and sea green eyes are normal, but you have a green tail, your skin is blue, Atlantis sank, and its inhabitants are rumored legendary myth.”
“Interesting.” His chuckle warm, his gaze tracked her several more yards. He tilted his head as her dress hindered her movement. “Atlantis sank in appearance. The manipulation of time and space is a benefit my people have enjoyed for several millenniums. We can shift into any water creature desired.”
Her chin dipped in the water. She kicked harder. Her hope of escape in her ability to distract, she sought to keep him talking. “What do you mean?”
* * * *
His every muscle tense in preparation to snatch her from the ocean’s death grip, Reef spread his arms over the surface. “We’ll talk all you want if you let me work for both of us.” He extended his arm. “Give me your hand.”
“I don’t think so.” She rolled over and made a mad dash in the opposite direction.
“Woman.” He dove down, sped after her, and surfaced directly before her. The sweep of his arm around her waist pulled her tight against him and kept her afloat. “Your escape attempts are a waste of energy we can put toward more enjoyable activities. Relax.”
She put her palms flat on his chest and pushed. “I don’t know you, let go.”
Reef refused to relent. “You’re floundering again, little water sprite.”
She gaped and blinked several times. “Little? Better open your eyes, mister. I’m what most men call fat.”
He winked. “Pleasantly plump.”
“P-pleasant? Not only are you…odd, but blind.”
“Really.” Reef plunged beneath the surface and swept his gaze over her figure. Delicate bare feet and shapely legs kicked furiously to keep her head above water. Rounded backside, curvaceous hips, and an ever-so-slightly indented waist aroused. Determined feminine kicks and the water current lifted her dress and revealed white panties. Full breasts floated while she bobbed. He surfaced behind her.