||Shadow of the Hawk
Cover Art: Louisa Gallie
“Simple educator” doesn’t begin to describe Kristina, not when she has the ability to read minds and shove someone’s molecules into another dimension. The kidnapping of her little brother by the Dark Angel adds another complication to her life, which is already messed by desiring Grant Carmichael.
Grant uses shifting and clairsentience searching for a means to an end, until he touches Kristina Palmer. A jolt of normal excited him and for the first time, in a century, he’d have to navigate a relationship the old-fashioned way. But will the sweet paranormalist allow him, a shifter, to seduce her?
Cold drops of liquid splashed against her cheek. She’d lost consciousness. How could she have let that happen?
Chills ran over her skin, creating a brief clamminess. Kristina couldn’t allow deep sleep for lengthy periods. Vigilance was required or she would become vulnerable to outside forces. Evil lurked and waited, for that fraction of time when her defenses were lax, to take advantage. Mentally she checked her safeguards, on the window ledges and thresholds. Outdoor lights activated, chimney flue, made from an iron bound by special spices, locked into place, and the local security agency’s system blinked green. Although the emerald lights were soothing, she tried to power off her brain. What had she forgotten? The smoky odor of the fire and her warm, tea-filled belly had weakened all of her shields, allowing her to segue to the other realms and open pathways to slumber. Yet, cold drops of water slid along her cheek.
The cold liquid slipped down her neck. Focused on her surroundings, she drew a deep breath, trying to get a scent and determine if a foreign entity risked entering her living room. No unusual sounds, just the quick blustery winds whipping leafless birch branches against the massive wall of windows. The repetitious click and snick of freezing rain provided a musical torrent, as a rough-callused finger stroked the side of her face. Her muscles tensed, tightening in preparation to fight whatever monster dared enter her home.
She met an amber stare straight on. A shiver of fear ran through her at the sight of a well-formed man. Over six feet tall, he had a sleek, golden cap of wet hair stuck to his perfectly shaped head. Naked, his sculpted muscles gleamed in the dim light provided by the combustion of red, blue, and white flames snapping on the wrought-iron grate housed inside the stone fireplace. She couldn’t tap into his thoughts. Well, this was different. She could fry him on the spot with a single bolt of lightning from her fingertip, though that weapon wasn’t her most potent. As a youngster she’d sent a playmate into another dimension. His molecules separated like falling confetti and disappeared in a violent flow of energy. Granted her mother found the missing boy and retuned him to his parents. A heart-wrenching experience, but it gave her a sense of power. She could create a force to send this handsome stranger somewhere into the galaxy.
Water had formed perfect circles, and clusters ran rippling along his powerful physique, leading her gaze from his shoulders to a tapered waist. Her lower region tingled with pleasant jolts of carnal need. From his relaxed, almost sappy expression she assumed he intended no harm, but still, a naked stranger in her living room did unnerve her. His penis rose. She lowered her glance. Pools of water collected near his large feet, soaking onto her burgundy Persian rug. Fight the attraction!
She jerked upright. Chilled, due to his touch leaving her or a result of the open French doors, she glanced at the human-designed security system. The jade lights continued to flash. Keep calm. She snatched her cell from beside the laptop and tapped the face. “Who are you? How did you get past—”
“Your time has arrived. You need to be strong,” he responded without answering her query.
She jumped to a stand and unsteadily held out the phone, keeping the face away from him. No bars, no signals, no help from that quarter. “I’ve notified the police.” “You are the one I seek, the one chosen. Prepare.” He leaned. His elongated nose bumped into hers, and he exhaled licorice-scented breath. Warm, firm lips touched hers. His arrogance and features reminded her of her gypsy relatives, but his kiss—straight from her dreams. Despite wanting another kiss, she drew the chair in front of her like a shield. He took a step away and smiled a cocky grin. “What do you mean you’ve been seeking me? Why?” The words would have been more authoritative if she could have focused on anything but his southern region. The pungent tang of red vine titillated her mouth. She licked her lips, wanting to taste him again. An unclothed, beautiful man, who favored a sweet, told her she’d been selected to…what? Her mind stuttered to a stop. The warmth of the flames didn’t heat her numb body as she drew random conclusions of what to do next.
He didn’t appear to be threatening. Could he simply be seeking help from a modern day crystal ball, rune-stone-carrying fortune teller? His eyes glittered as if he’d read her thoughts. He was beautiful, exactly what she’d look for in a mate, if she was searching for one. His amber gaze softened. Her stomach rioted with desires she’d squelched years before. Who or what was he? More importantly, why did her heart beat staccato at his nearness?
His well-muscled legs took him closer to the patio doors. Instead of walking out, he pivoted. “We need to save the world.”
All rights reserved by jj Keller
Fantasies with spice and humor.