A roller coaster ride of fun and sexy sci fi paranormal romance with a devilish flavor!
Astra Q Phelps is on the side of the good guys in the war between good and evil. Unfortunately for her, the bad guys have been making inroads on her soul. And when a particularly dark and sexy dark worlder fixes his heated gaze on Astra, the lighter side of her nature quickly finds itself kicked to the curb by her slut-monkey side. But Astra doesn’t have time to deal with her love life. She’s in the middle of a war between two dark factions…a war that just might mean the end of the human population…and it seems the fate of the world rests uneasily on her shoulders. It’s a lot of pressure to put on one feisty halfling…but Astra Q Phelps is definitely…erm…certainly…ahh…possibly up to the challenge.
The icy tentacles of water pounded against my skin, almost sizzling against the heat of it. I suddenly realized that what I was experiencing was more than simple lust and imagination. It was devil-induced mischief making. Even as I had the thought a dark shape shimmered into view on the other side of my glass shower wall.
Proud of myself for not shrieking, I very calmly reached over to push the Off button on the shower, not trusting myself to speak to use voice de-activation.
As I emerged he raised one silky, black eyebrow and let his gaze slide down my dripping flesh. “Very lovely. I shall enjoy this very much.”
My pulse exploded in my chest and, for a very brief moment, I thought I would die. But, another point for me, I simply let my gaze slide to the towel he was holding for me, just out of reach of course. “You know, I’ve learned a lot about the Royal Court recently, but I didn’t know you were delusional as a general rule.”
His yummy lips parted in a wide smile, showing just the very tips of his teeth. “Did you know that we can smell lust, little halfling?”
Okay, I’ll admit it, that one got to me. “Give me the damn towel!”
He took one more look-see and then held the coveted piece of cloth out, taking care to hold it just far enough away that I would have to take a step closer to grab it. I looked longingly at the drying tube but quickly realized I would have to turn my back on him and leave him to his own devices for the length of time it would take the tube to dry me off. I wasn’t willing to do that at the moment.
Seeing no other choice, I moved that one step closer and pulled on the towel. Without my even realizing that he’d moved, he suddenly had me smashed full length against his body, with one arm wrapped around my waist like a steel band. His gaze burned into me as he spoke. “I will have just one taste now, as a preview of things to come.”
I tried to jerk away but found that my legs and arms had turned to air. As his incredibly soft lips lowered to mine I felt myself floating, completely boneless in his arms. His breath smelled of lust and sensual things and the sweet heat of it moved like molten pleasure through my body as we kissed. I knew he was playing with my mind again and I wanted to cry with frustration that I was so helpless against it. There I was, a big, bad, demon and devil conqueror and I was putty in the beautiful creature’s hands. I wanted to scream. I wanted to knee him in the balls. Instead I moaned and ground myself against him. Damned traitorous flesh.
His hands moved down my wet body to cup my buttocks and pull me more tightly against him. Putting me into delicious contact with the long, hard ridge of flesh beneath his oh-so-delightfully tight pants, the more intimate contact certainly didn’t make me want to pull away.
However, from somewhere in my misty brain came a single, unbidden but soul saving picture that moved between us, metaphorically speaking of course, like a gust of arctic air. My mind formed a picture of Timmon, spread across a cold, stone floor like so much green blood pudding. On the heels of that vision my anger spiked. Rage produced a tingly feeling that felt like power. It was a power I’d never experienced before. It was one I didn’t know I had. But somehow I recognized it with the primitive instinct that had served my ancestors and my kind well.
For an interminable moment, my mind tried to fight against the wonderful sensations he was producing in my body. I had to create some mental space between us so I could recover my equilibrium enough to kick his ass. His lips had left my mouth and were scorching a trail down my throat, licking away the last of the moisture there and moving inexorably toward more vulnerable destinations. One hot hand already covered my breast, the nimble fingers pulling gently on a rigid pink nipple. Each tug sent an answering flare of need spiking through me…tightening in a coil of lust low in my belly.
In desperation I began gathering the fledgling power around me, using only the barest of instincts to pull it into some kind of focus.
My body vibrated under the building power. His lips left mine abruptly and his eyes narrowed on my face. My flesh began to tingle and jump where he touched me and, with widening eyes, he looked down at the arm he still had wrapped around me. As he did, sparks erupted from the juncture of our flesh and he released me with a surprised laugh. As soon as his flesh left mine, the power exploded. Closing my eyes, I tried to focus all of it into a single stream that centered in my right arm. The air around me buzzed with electricity and began to pulse against my skin, pushing insistently, though I wasn’t at all sure what it wanted me to do. I was acting strictly on instinct, on pure blind intuition, as I raised my arm toward him and opened my eyes.
The power shot out of the fingers of my hand, taking my breath with it and almost pulling me off my feet. My arm jerked under the force of the explosion and, rather than blasting him, I shattered a hologram of my parents that had been hanging on the wall behind him. I gritted my teeth and refocused, leaving a scorch mark on the wall as I guided it toward him.
He could have gotten out of the way. He knew it was coming. But he stood his ground and surprisingly, he had a vague smile on his face as it hit him. Rather than exploding him as I’d hoped, I merely succeeded in raising him up off the floor a couple of inches and pushing him back a couple of feet, until he met up with the wall. He hung there, the smile sitting on his face and his arms crossed against his chest, bringing a memory, sharp and disturbing, of him as he’d been in my apparently prophetic dream. Above the smile, those strange, black eyes, which were now filled with revelation and something that looked like surprised recognition, were locked on me unwaveringly.
All too quickly the power started to drain away. It had pulled every available bit of energy from my cells and had no more fuel to draw on. A final, harmless spurt of power shot from my throbbing fingers and Dialle sank slowly back to the floor, still smiling.
My knees buckled and I collapsed. My whole body felt like just so much stiff rubber. I had no energy left to hold me upright. As I hit the floor, the world faded to charcoal gray around me and I knew I was going to pass out.
I landed on the cold floor and lay shivering uncontrollably, though I somehow knew that the air was suffocatingly warm all around me. As I floated away, my mind just barely registered the sound of his voice speaking in Hades over me, in a surprisingly gentle tone. Then I felt him pick me up and my world faded completely to black. Leaving me to whatever fate I had stumbled against.
USA Today Bestselling Author Sam Cheever writes romantic paranormal/fantasy and mystery/suspense, creating stories that celebrate the joy of love in all its forms. Known for writing great characters, snappy dialogue, and unique and exhilarating stories, Sam is the award-winning author of 50+ books and has been writing for over a decade under several noms de plume.
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