Steamy Paranormal Romance
A Dragon Shifter, a curse, a rare book, and the woman who is the key to setting him free…
Finding real love doesn’t happen between the dusty pages of old books. Not usually. But nothing is usual for antique folio researcher, Hannah Foster, when a chance meeting with an old beggar woman changes everything in her quiet librarian’s life.
A simple thank you for a simple kindness would have been enough, but when the old woman’s prize possession opens Hannah to a fantasy world she’s only known in books, she’s in for the adventure of a lifetime. A fantasy hero in the flesh. Talk about a book boyfriend come to life! His story tests both the laws of physics and her imagination, but in her heart she knows it’s true. Now it’s up to her to help him break his captive curse and earn their own happily ever after.
SNEAK PEEK CHAPTER SNIPPET
Hannah muttered to herself, kicking off her flip flops. She spared a glance for Aggie’s book, sitting on the chaise beside her reading table.
In the muted sun, the tome seemed ordinary. Old, definitely. But mystical? No. What she saw, earlier, or thought she saw, was simply a trick of the eye. There was no other logical explanation. Books didn’t shimmer or warm to the touch, and they certainly didn’t sent shivers down your belly to your—
What if it did?
Well, it was either that, or Aggie’s delusions were contagious.
Hannah sat on the edge of the lounge chair, sliding her fingers to the tender flesh on the side of her foot.
Despite her decision not to search for Aggie, she did so anyway. Her quest led her up 5th Avenue, past Central Park East and the Museum Mile, almost to Harlem. She scoured all the old woman’s haunts, accomplishing nothing but a blister and a headache before ending up at square one.
Wiping a hand across her forehead, she frowned at the heat. What did she expect with a backyard more greenhouse than garden?
Even so, she couldn’t complain. Her librarian’s salary was nowhere near enough to cover a townhouse rent in the heart of Manhattan. Yet here she was, in the lap of luxury. A sublet from a generous patron. So what if they preferred a citified hot house to the great outdoors.
Not that a postage-stamp sized yard on East 68th street was anything akin to the outdoors. Still, the price was right, and all she had to do was water the plants and indoor fruit trees.
“God, I need a drink.” Getting up from the chaise, she winced on her blistered foot. “The old broad is lucky she’s Yoda cute.”
Aggie hadn’t gone far. Not like the last time when she went M.I.A. for a week. The old lady was merely making a point, and she’d surface soon enough.
The book will reveal itself to you first, whether you want it to or not.
Yeah, okay Aggs.
Whatever Aggie’s point, it could wait. There was a bottle of champagne chilling in the fridge with her name on it. Just what she needed after her trek up New York’s east side.
Hannah headed inside to grab the bubbly from the bottom shelf, and a carton of orange juice from the fridge door. “Here’s to Mimosas. A traditional pre-noon drink. Even if Ritz Crackers and peanut butter don’t exactly qualify as brunch.”
Untwisting the wire from the cork, she popped the champagne over the kitchen sink before pouring the entire foaming contents into a glass jug, adding just enough juice to turn the pale champagne orange.
She caught a glimpse of her lounge chair from the kitchen window and craned to see Aggie’s book on top. Nothing was going to happen to it in the five minutes she was gone. Yet she couldn’t not look.
There was something about the old book that fascinated. But why? She’d handled dozens of rare manuscripts over the past year. Wasting brain space on whether or not Aggie’s book had mystical properties was ridiculous.
With a butter knife between her teeth, and a jar of peanut butter and sleeve of crackers under her arm, Hannah carried the mimosa jug and a tall glass outside, placing them on the small reading table beside the chaise.
She moved Aggie’s book off the lounge chair, putting it on the table before she sat, stretching out her legs. “It’s just a book, Hannah Banana. An old book.”
Pouring herself a full glass from the jug, she drained the mimosa with a wince. “Ow. Can curvy girl say light weight?” A burp rumbled in her chest, and she covered her mouth.
She refilled her glass, downing half before picking up the book to scan the inside parchment. “Okay, Aglaope. What mysteries have you for me decipher?”
She tapped her glass with her fingernail. Aggie wasn’t hard to peg. For the past six months, she seemed sweet, yet quietly eccentric. But a nut job? No.
Between what Val said at the coffee shop and Aggie’s weird ramblings about romance and whether or not she believed in dreams, the two made her feel halfway to being the neighborhood cat lady. Yet she was the one with a steady job and actual home.
“You’re drinking in solitary, Foster. If that’s not halfway to cat lady then I don’t know what is.”
With a sigh she glanced at her tabby cat curled in the grass by an indoor lemon tree, his tail swishing without a care.
“Who the hell cares what people think? Right, Tigger?” Lifting her glass, she clicked the inside of her cheek in salute. Fucking meow.
Hannah finished her second mimosa and put the glass on the round table. Her head was already fuzzy, but that’s what happens when you drink on an empty stomach. She opened Aggie’s book and scooted higher against the cushions.
She was a professional. There was no reason on Earth the timeworn tome shouldn’t fascinate. The manuscript belonged in a museum or at the very least a rare book auction, like she originally thought. Not sitting on her lap in a greenhouse garden.
“Aggie gave you to me, so I can decide the proper course of action.” She hiccuped.
Problem was, she’d never bring herself to go against Aggie’s wishes. At least not while the old woman drew breath. It would be a slap in the face to sell her gift for profit. Having the book appraised was one thing. Peddling it to the highest bidder? No.
“Okay, book. Show me your secrets. I’m half drunk and naked under my robe, so nothing’s going to shock me.”
Hannah ran her hand over the cover, her wrist tingling again. More weirdness. Nice.
She opened the book and turned the fragile pages with practiced care. Aggie was right. She couldn’t read a word written, but the images were spectacular.
She expected woodcuts or sketches, but these illustrations mesmerized with the same iridescence as the cover. They were stunning. Like a sketchbook from one of the great masters.
Hannah turned to the center spread. “Wow. Score one for shock-value, Aggie. Your book certainly revealed itself. Talk about ancient porn.”
With a chuckle, she licked her lips. The image stretched across both pages, rivaling the brothel frescoes in ancient Pompeii.
The vivid descriptions didn’t spare the eyes, detailing every sexual position imaginable. The more deviant the image, the more defined.
“Wherever this came from, they certainly knew how to get their freak on.”
The champagne made her giggle at the kinky images, and she browsed the following pages, turning them slowly for full effect.
“Oh. My. God.” Her hand froze on the delicate parchment, her eyes skimming a full frontal illustration spread in all its well-hung glory.
“Holy Penis Pump. Dude!” she murmured, licking her lips again. “If only you were real,
The image was so perfect and inviting.
The man’s eyes seemed to smolder as if privy to her innermost secrets and an invitation to strip them bare.
Hannah traced the meticulously drawn masculine features, her fingertips sliding over the two dimensional planes of his broad chest. She traced his well-endowed package.
“Damn. I would straddle his saddle for sure and ride myself bowlegged.”
The picture held her captivated, and she couldn’t drag her eyes from the sexy image. With all its detail, the drawing had to be a depiction of an ancient fertility God. He was certainly hot enough to make a woman’s ovaries stand up and take notice.
Odd pins and needles prickled her tattoos, and she lifted her hand only to gasp as the dragon winged tattoo on her wrist seemed to glow.
Fuzzy from the champagne, she let her fingers drift toward her decolletage. Arching her back, she shivered as the tingle at her wrist brushed a nipple.
“Oh, God.” She hiccuped again. “Valerie is right. I really need to get laid.”
Closing her eyes, she leaned back against the chaise and let her knees fall open against the cushions.
“You may not be real, lover, but your sexy picture is hot enough to tease, and in my imagination I can make you whatever I want.”
Hannah circled his likeness with one hand while she skimmed her palm over her nipples, their peaks stiffening inside her robe. She opened her eyes, keeping her gaze on the gorgeous man in the picture.
With a sigh, she sunk deeper into the soft couch, imagining his hands and lips on her skin, and her fingers snaked their way to her pussy.
She closed her eyes again, one hand drifting to the outside edge of the illustration. “Ouch! Damn it!” her eyes snapped open. “What the—?”
Blood welled from a paper-cut and dripped onto the parchment.
“Shit!” Hannah yanked her hand back, bringing her finger to her mouth. “Damn,” she mumbled.
She sat up and swung her legs to the edge of the couch, her body still humming with slight arousal.
Her eyes jerked to the glass ceiling, her arm flying up to shield against splintered glass. She squinted into the sun, shocked as an injured gull flew headlong into the greenhouse from the shattered pane.
“Shoo!” Hannah got up with the open book in hand. “Get out!” She flapped the book at the scared bird, watching it frantically wing around the glass interior.
“Don’t you break another window, you blind ass bird! I can’t afford the repairs! Go out the way you came!”
Hackles high, her cat hissed, tracking the frightened bird.
“Tigger, no! Bad cat!”
With a high-pitched screech, the tabby took off, chasing the bird through the yard.
“Great. Just great.”
Hannah pivoted on her heel, rushing to close the sliding doors before Tigger moved his citified version of wild kingdom into the house.
Breath rushed from her lungs as she hit the slate. Pain vibrated from her forearms into her shoulders and back, as fiery stings bit into her skin from the broken shards. The book landed beneath her, wedged between her arm and her chest as she hit the ground.
“Great,” she muttered pulling herself to all fours. She sat back on her heels, wiping crimson streaks onto her robe.
Bright sun streamed through the broken pane, cutting the muted light like a knife. It felt good on her sore shoulders, but it also lit up the mess she left on the manuscript.
The cuts on her arms and knees throbbed, but it was the blood smears on the book that hurt the most.
“Ugh. A rare tome ruined because of a GPS impaired bird and my mangy cat. Of course, my drunken masturbating didn’t help.”
Annoyed, Hannah blew her hair from her forehead and winced getting to her feet. “Calm down. You can do this. Dried blood is brown. You have the tools to smooth the blemish into the book’s patina at work. An appraiser will never know the difference.”
Frowning, she watched the large, bloody splotch soak further into the dried paper, its uneven edges diffusing oddly into dark, spidery lines.
“Or maybe not.”
With an irritated tug, she shrugged her bloodstained robe from her body and dropped it on the chaise. She stalked toward the kitchen for antiseptic and gauze, before rummaging in the laundry room for a clean tee-shirt and a pair of sweats, finding nothing but a skimpy camisole and a thong.
“Note to self. Horny librarians and hot pics of ancient penis pumpers do not mix.”
Grabbing the stain remover spray from the laundry counter, she carried everything back through the sliders, her arms and knees glistening with triple antibiotic ointment.
“Neither does white terrycloth and blood.” Hannah blinked, her hand freezing mid-reach for her robe.
Robe forgotten, Hannah turned her full attention to the ancient book, and the fact its parchment was blank. No blood smears. No ancient porn. Nothing. It was as devoid of writing and artwork as the day the book’s pages were hand-stitched.
“Can’t be.” Hannah picked her way across the shard covered slate, her breath stilling in her chest.
She bent to lift the volume, running her hand over the blank spread. “No fertility God, either,” she murmured.
Tigger’s hiss broke her trance, and she turned expecting another scene out of the movie, The Birds, only to watch her cat winding his way between two bare feet.
Her gaze traveled upward from there, skimming well-defined calves and powerful thighs before stopping crotch-level at a package that rivaled the one in the missing illustration.
Wide eyes shot to the man’s face and a scream formed in her throat.
“My hips await your tightly wrapped legs. I am yours to ride bow-legged.”
Hannah’s wide eyes bugged even more, and the scream tore from her lips. She scrambled behind the lounge chair, snatching up the butter knife.
“Wh…who are you? How did you get in here? How long have you been hiding in my house?” For him to quote her almost word for word, he had to be here the entire time.
Eyes frantic, she clutched her limp robe to her chest, holding the butter knife as a weapon.
“Get out! Get out now!”
He angled his head, confused. “You summoned me.”
Every horrific episode of Law and Order SVU jumbled in her head. This was so bad!
“Summoned you? Dude, this isn’t funny. I don’t know who is behind this practical joke, but I’m not laughing! Get out or I’m calling the police!”
The man didn’t say a word, and Hannah’s mind raced with options. Why did she have to drink so much on an empty stomach? Didn’t matter. The pain from the broken glass had sobered her already, but this? Paralyzed was the only word that came to mind.
He stood five feet away. Naked and unmoving.
Completely, gloriously, naked.
He was utterly stunning, and a dead ringer for the ancient guy in the illustration. That much wasn’t lost on her muddled mind.
Long dark hair tied with a leather string framed chiseled features. A gorgeous face with eyes the color of dark chocolate looked at her puzzled, but otherwise unfazed at being nude in her backyard.
“Who are you,” she asked again, squaring her shoulders. “What are you doing here?” Her voice was shaky in her ears, so she tightened her jaw.
He lifted one broad shoulder, the muscles in his sculpted torso twitching. “My name is of no consequence,” he replied. “It hasn’t been for some time. I’m here because you made a blood offering. I am yours—”
…TO BE CONTINUED.
Want the rest of the story? Here’s the link:
When it rains men, it pours! Just ask Mikki Townsend.
About to lose her family’s bookshop, Mikki’s life can’t get any more complicated. Or so she thinks. That is until destiny crashes her headlong into two of the hottest shifters she ever met. Irresistibly drawn to both, she can’t choose. Worse yet, she doesn’t want to.
Double the Fantasy.
Like opposite sides of the same coin, both Eli Hunt and Nick Stanton make her body hum and her mind scramble. These alpha-males unlock dangerous passions and wake her dual-nature until she can’t see straight.
With her world in a tailspin, Mikki finds herself juggling in ways she only fantasized about, especially when fate throws another curve and she realizes everything’s connected. Can she get over the shock and accept a fantasy come true, or will she run from their shared destiny?
Her Fairytale Wolf
Isabel Lassiter knows with the right opportunity her custom couture could rule Tinsel Town. Instead, she’s tied to a boss she both hates and pities, waiting for her chance shine. Lonely, she waits for the right someone to notice and sweep her off her feet.
Zander Petrov has Hollywood and the city of Los Angeles at his feet. Still, he’s never forgotten his shifter roots or his duty to his clan. He knows he must mate, but in his glittering world a genuine mate is hard to find. The search continues until the day he meets Isabel in this modern twist on a favorite fairytale.
A chance meeting opens the door for everything this Cinderella wants and more, but jealousy and betrayal nearly snatch the happily ever after from her hands. What they didn’t count on was a Prince Charming with a bite.
The Wolf's Dream Mate
Nicknamed the big bad wolf, Dr. Paxton Noble is notorious for his bedside manner, but this sexy shifter’s life is turned upside side the moment an unidentified woman is rushed through his emergency room doors. Something about the woman’s scent stirs more than just his sex drive. She stirs his wolf. Compelled to figure out why, he’s obsessed, not only with the case but how to wake her from her mysterious sleep.
Evelyn Grisham is no princess, but the unsuspecting woman is a pawn in a game that’s left her prone and comatose. Attacked, this feisty cat isn’t taken down by a finger prick on a spinning wheel, but a syringe filled with venom, and her handsome prince is the doctor who has to figure out how to save her. The twist? Hot and heavy dreams with a lot of paranormal steam in this very modern take on the tale of Sleeping Beauty!
Her Winter Wolves
Grace Snow is a marketing genius and the heir to Snow Industries, a cosmetics conglomerate. Looking to bring the company into the 21st century isn’t as simple as she wishes. Not with her stepmother making every move a tug-of-war. Grace’s new app, Mirror-Mirror, can rebrand them as fresh and new for a younger generation. That’s only if she can keep her stepmother and her vindictiveness away from her plans. Good luck with that!
Wolf shifter, Adam Hunt, has been the company’s Head of Security since Grace was a teen. Hired to look after Gracie’s well-being, he’s crossed the evil stepmother one too many times and now she’s blackmailing him to do her bidding. What she doesn’t know is he’s the Omega of his pack, and together he and their Alpha, Zach Cassidy, will protect and defend Grace even at the cost of their own lives.
Grace is their mate. The one destined to complete their Triad. She has no idea that she’s about to become part of the sexiest relationship of her life. Jealousy and greed push her stepmother to get rid of Grace. Gracie might not be ready for what’s coming her way—not the two sexiest men she’ll ever want—or the poison conjured by her stepmother, but she knows what she wants and isn’t afraid to fight.
Includes fun Character Interviews at the end!