Caltha Dooran is the toughest, fiercest shape-shifting mermaid in the western seas. She has three Clans to rule, and no time for romance. But when a warlock, Jonty, turns up and asks her to come with him to London to capture a water monster, she can’t say no. In London, away from her duties, her attraction for Jonty grows… and they soon fall under each other’s spell. But will his past and her responsibilities pull them apart, or can they find the only true magic, the one that binds two souls together?
Caltha opened her eyes and smiled at Jonty. Her irises were the exact colour of the sea on a cloudy day, when a ray of sun pierces the clouds and hits the water, turning it as bright as emeralds. Jonty would never tire of gazing into those green depths.
“Hello, darling,” he said.
Her grin broadened, revealing her pearl-white teeth, a little sharper than a human woman’s. The more time he spent with her, the more he noticed those things that revealed her true species. Her skin was a little cooler than his, she was twice as strong as a man, and she didn’t feel the cold. He loved every one of those details. He loved the ways in which she was different from him, and the ways in which she resembled him.
She nuzzled his neck. “Hello, cariad.”
Cariad. Love. She’d called him “love”. A soft, bright bud bloomed in his chest. He stroked her smooth ivory shoulder. “Did you sleep well?”
It wasn’t quite what he wanted to say. He wanted to tell her how she made him feel, but he didn’t dare, not yet. If he spoke too soon, he might spook her, and then she might run off, back to her people. Yes, she’d called him “love,” but her Clan, her laws, and her entire species still stood between them, as hard and immovable as the Welsh hills. He had to figure out how to overcome those barriers. To do so would take time.
She nestled into him, resting her cheek against his. “I had the most lovely dream. Can I tell you about it?”
“Yes, please.” He settled into a more comfortable position, eager to hear her.
“I was on a sunny beach.” Her voice was low, still sleepy, a sweet melody in his ears. “Humans and mermen were there. The mermen walked among the humans in their aquatic shape, and the humans didn’t mind. They smiled at the mermen and greeted them like friends. A little human child got into trouble in the water and cried for help. A merman swam towards him and took him in his arms, and the baby laughed.” Tears of emotion sparkled in her eyes.
The flower unfurled its petals in Jonty’s heart, filling him with a happy glow. “You wish humans and mermen could live side by side.”
She pushed herself up, so she could look at him. “We live side by side now. But in my dream the mermen could mingle with humans without hiding their true nature.”
“As they used to.” Jonty remembered the stories that May Seaborne, the sea witch, had told him.
Caltha nodded. “Yes. In the old days, my people could even marry humans and have children.”
A faint pink colour appeared in her cheeks, and she looked away. “I think those were better times.” She glanced at him from under her copper eyelashes. “Do you agree?”
Alice lives in London, UK, with her husband and son. By day she’s a compliance manager for a pharmaceutical company. By night she writes fantasy romance about shape shifting mermen, water monsters and time-travelling witches. Her first book, “A Merman’s Choice,” was published in January 2019 by Black Velvet Seductions. It is the first book in a fantasy romance trilogy inspired by the landscapes and legends of Brittany and Wales. The second book, “Music for a Merman,” is out now and the third, “Mermaids Marry in Green,” will be released on 1 November. Alice has also written two short stories for BVS anthologies, “The Sweetest Magic of All,” in “Mystic Desire,” out now, and “The Holiday Mermaid” in “Desire Me Again,” out in October. Alice loves reading and writing stories, and sharing them with anyone who’s interested!
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Amazon page: https://www.amazon.com/Alice-Renaud/e/B07L52P17B