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Matchmaker Dannika will do anything to help the mer warriors find their soul mates and save their race.
Until a warrior tries to claim her for himself.
Forget the steady strength in his bulging biceps, the tingling awareness coursing through her veins, or the patience, kindness, and empathy in his iridescent green-and-coffee-brown irises.
She already met her soul mate.
Met, married, and mourned him.
If something happened to her gorgeous mer warrior…
No. She can’t go through that again.
Her dreams were forgotten for a reason.
There is no second chance for one true love.
This is a lovely standalone shifter romance filled with adventure in the bestselling Lords of Atlantis series. It contains steamy love scenes, vivid undersea battles, a forbidden island filled with plucky castaways, and the kraken! Dive into the mysteries of the Bermuda Triangle with these wily warriors of the sea.
“I want you to have a happy life,” Dannika said. “Just not with me. Because no matter what you say, Eliot was my soul mate, and now he’s gone. And that’s it for me. I had my greatest love, and it’s over. Forever.”
This was the crux for her.
“Dannika.” Ciran rested both palms on top of hers. The hard metal band of her wedding ring pressed into his hand. “Your husband was a good man. I do not doubt you were soul mates. If he were still here, I would not be. Your soul would resonate for him and him only.”
Moisture shimmered in her eyes. She swallowed hard and sniffed. “I don’t know why I’m so affected. You’re only repeating what I’ve been saying.”
“Because it is validating for another to affirm you are right. And you are. I do not argue with your love.”
She sniffed. “But?”
“Yes. But.” He squeezed her hands. “Eliot has passed into the blacknight sea, where the males gone before him eternally sing of his honors. And you are here. On the surface.” He pressed both palms to his chest again. “Your soul resonates with mine. It does not matter what you or I want. This is what is.”
She swallowed again. “But why?”
“I do not know.”
She choked and sniffed. “You seem to know everything else.”
“No. But I do know that every moment you deny our connection, your soul darkens. Every time you declare that you are undeserving, you weaken your inner self.”
“Because this is impossible…”
“When the sacred islands were full across the ocean, and each city had its own customs, large families were normal. If a warrior’s soul mate died, no laws prevented a warrior from seeking a second.”
“But did they? Your records are incomplete.”
“I cannot be the first warrior in all the millennia to claim a bride who has once loved a human.” He tilted his head in concession. “But if I am, then I hope to make the right decisions now to bring our races into closer alignment.”
She sniffed again. “I just don’t know.”
“You doubt our connection. But I do not. Trust in me.” He vowed upon his own soul. “Until all your doubts fade, I will have confidence for both of us. And when you fully accept my claim, you will never doubt again.”
She took a deep, shuddery breath and let it out. “So I have to embrace those fears and they’ll melt away?”
“Embrace your strength. Embrace your destiny. Embrace me.”
Her gaze traveled over his face, from his hairline to his dark brows, across his nose, and centered on his lips. Hers parted, and her breath had a catch.
Her soul glowed with power.
She wanted him. He wanted her. She cared about his warriors and the future of the mer, and so did he. She listened and thought and worried. And so did he.
The moment stretched.
He would follow her to Florida, he would follow her to New York, he would follow her to every land in the world.
But perhaps he would not have to.
All she had to do was yield.
Give in to what her own soul knew that it wanted—needed—and embrace him with a kiss.
FYI there’s a FREE prequel that you can get when you sign up for my newsletter. It’s called Sea Lord’s Castaway and it tells the origin stories of Dannika’s new friends Bex, Angie, and Meg.
Also in the Series
Hazel brushed the tattoos on Lotar’s sternum. “These have a meaning, right? What does this one mean?”
“It is the symbol of my city.”
“My origin city. Syrenka.”
She traced the lines up. The snowflake pattern branched into geometric shapes. Smaller hashes and squares divided each square. “Where’s Syrenka?”
The steam of the shower wrapped them in slippery fog.
She was still terrified about what accepting Lotar would mean. The fate of the mermen would rest on her small shoulders.
But she had already decided.
She’d decided when she’d brought him back to her apartment.
The door was there. She’d already opened it.
Now she just had to walk through.
Hazel lowered her hand and forced herself to look up into his deep, watchful eyes. “What happens now?”
“You accept my claim.”
“I thought I did.”
“With a kiss.”
Right. She’d gotten him naked and seen everything but still hadn’t shared a kiss.
Hazel did everything out of order.
Whatever. It didn’t matter. All that mattered was that she took the next step.
Her stomach filled with butterflies. She was ready. She chose this. She chose him.
Hazel closed her eyes and lifted her lips.
She opened her eyes.
Lotar looked conflicted.
A dark frown slashed his brow. His worried gaze fixed on her lips and all his muscles flexed, taut, as he struggled.
When he noticed her question, he blinked as though trying to clear away his emotions, concealing an internal fight behind the quiet, impassive watchfulness.
He’d said she was his soul mate. He knew. And the next step was to kiss…
“Okay, well.” She patted his chest. “When you want to do that, let me know.”
She turned away to shut off the water.
Lotar’s hand closed over her wrist.
He pulled her back, gently but decisively.
Haha, okay, maybe she had misread him. “Oh, hey, you—”
His mouth covered hers in a kiss.
The shower pattered on her back. The scent of vanilla and cardamom mixed with sea salt and male.
Heat streaked through her body.
He was all muscle, hardness and pride, strength and dominance.
His mouth opened, and his tongue sought hers.
She licked his intoxicating male flavor, lapped up every drop, teasing his mouth, delving and swirling, nibbling.
His hand at her wrist tightened and the heat of his body crossed the last inch to draw her against him. Her thigh slid against his, her belly pressed his upper hip, her breasts slid against his chest.
He pursued her mouth doggedly. She teased him, swirling and looping until he released her lips. Then she bit his sharp jaw with little nips and grazed her teeth across his rough chin.
He sucked in a breath.
Her nipples tightened to hard pearls, and desire streaked into her center.
He was quiet but expressive. Ready but uncertain.
And that was just fine.
She kissed down the column of his neck, over the cord of the spiral shell necklace, to his collarbone. So broad, so powerful. Down his pectorals, over the swirling tattoos. Like kissing ice fields, but hot and trembling. This was as meaningful to him as it was to her. After tonight, their lives would never be the—
He caught her wrists, stopping her.
Uncertainty flashed in his eyes.
No, not uncertainty.
He stared at her with absolute terror.
Had she gotten it all wrong?
Hazel looked up at him, worry tilting her head. “Are you okay?”
Because he was. He was more than okay.
His soul mate opened her body to him, pressed her soft form to his, accepted, and even covered him with hungry kisses. She wanted his claim. His kiss, his caress, his touch.
It was a dream.
His heart pounded as if a pack of angry bull sharks had scented him.
Hazel was so open. So confident in the moment of melding their bodies to create a young fry. Easy and yet serious, playful and yet passionate. She was a pure and beautiful soul.
He must protect her.
From danger, from injury.