Genre: Paranormal, Romance
Themes: Interracial BWAM, Multicultural, Shifter
Length: 25,580 words / 84 pages
He got grabby but it'll take more than that to keep her.
Haruto's first attempt to secure a mate failed, leaving him on the brink of death. And then he met Janine. Claiming her saves his life but Haruto and Janine both come to realize the bond they share is more than a simple cure. Learning to be a couple is the only option because the magic won't let them live without each other.
Janine tapped the end call button. Her smile faded as the phone screen went blank. She wasn’t sure she wanted Caleb to do another reading after she made her choice. She didn’t want to know if she’d chosen wrong.
Some part of her knew she would. Without any clues on how to choose right, wouldn’t Murphy’s Law come into play? Anything that could go wrong would, and she would end up with a guy who would make her life miserable until he left or she left him, leading her to a loveless marriage to another man who would probably make her miserable until the day she died.
She sighed in resignation and frustration as she put her phone back on the coffee table. “Who said life was easy?”
Sitting back on the couch, she prepared to wait, knowing no entertainment would distract her until the men showed. For better or for worse, she --
“Holy shit!” Janine screamed and jumped onto her couch as a giant, dark purple something appeared out of thin air and crashed onto her coffee table, smashing it.
It groaned, sighed, and then sagged.
Janine stared at the thing, waiting for it to do something else. It didn’t move except for the rise and fall of its body as it breathed.
Going slowly, and ready to bolt if the moment warranted it, she inched toward the thing. She couldn’t begin to guess what it was. It had wings like a bat and a long, thin tail. Other features were hidden because it had wrapped itself in a cocoon created by its wings.
She reached for it, her fingers shaking. “Hello?” Her voice was barely a whisper. She swallowed and tried again. “Hello?”
Banging on her door sent her back onto the couch and half over it. She stared at the purple bat and then at the door. The noise didn’t rouse it but almost gave her a heart attack.
She rushed to the door, slipped the chain in place, and then opened it. “Yes?”
The man on the other side said, “I’m Taylor, from the apartment below you. I heard something hit the floor and you screamed. Are you okay?”
Janine stopped herself from looking over her shoulder. She did notice the setting sun in the distance. Taylor from downstairs was standing on her welcome mat. Alone. There was no one else with him. Could the thing behind her be a man? Were these the two men Caleb had mentioned -- the man of her dreams and the man of her destiny?
She had definitely been dreaming about Taylor. He didn’t need to introduce himself. She’d known his name since the day he’d moved in. He was a personal trainer and had a body that showed it. The man exuded perfect, from his soft-looking brown hair to his designer-footwear-clad feet. She’d spent many a night fantasizing about Taylor personally training her body with a strict exercise regime of sex, sex and more sex.
“I’m fine,” she said in a breathy voice.
“You’re sure?” He lowered his voice while glancing over her head a few times. “This is a rough neighborhood. If you need something, you just have to say so.” He held out his hand, keeping it low so her body blocked it from view if someone were behind her.
He must think someone was in the apartment with her.
There was someone there, but Taylor must think the person was threatening her. He was offering her a lifeline. If she took his hand, would he burst past the chain and rush to the rescue?
But rescue her from what?
This had to be it. The choice. Did she let Taylor in and show him her uninvited guest or did she send him away to deal with the other man alone? She didn’t know anything about the purple thing sleeping on her ruined coffee table, except that he wasn’t human. That much was obvious.
But she didn’t know much about Taylor either beyond his banging body and his profession. They had never spoken. If he were an everyday human who didn’t know about the things going bump in the night being real, he would freak out seeing the one in her living room. Or he could be a human who felt the bumping things should be eradicated from the Earth.Release Date: November 15, 2013
Published by: Changeling Press