As some of my readers might know, I am hard at work on the third book in my Orkney Selkies series. Remember my other selkie men Calan and Mack? Well, they miss you.
Never got to meet them? Rectify it now at http://www.amazon.com/Rosanna-Leo/e/B007X5P4I8
It’s been a while since I’ve been able to visit this mystical part of Scotland. I wanted to make sure that when I did, the story would be a good one. My working title for book 3 is The Selkie and the Siren.
As you may remember, Calan and Mack have several selkie brothers, and book 3 will be about red-haired brother Edan (you met him in book 1 and saw more of him in book 2).
It’s been hard finding photo inspirations for Edan but model Ashley Radford is very close to the image in my mind.
Edan will have a difficult journey, and a terrible foe in the shape of a siren. His heroine? Amy Woods, host of a TV show called Beast Seekers. She’s a gun-toting, crossbow-wielding creature hunter. She believes the world is peopled with strange beings, but she’s never met anyone quite like Edan.
I’m still working on the story line but thought I’d provide a little teaser here. Tell me what you think of this introductory passage. I’d love your feedback! It’s unedited, so be gentle with me. 🙂
Scapa Flow, Orkney, Scotland
“Watch your step, loser.”
George Linklater ignored his older brother Jim’s dig and kicked at the rocks beneath his feet. Manoeuvering this stony stretch of beach with Jim had not proven the idyllic adventure their mother had suggested. After all, Jim was ornery on the best of days, and George wasn’t exactly a happy camper at present either.
This trip sucked.
“You should be proud of your Orcadian heritage,” their mother had said after booking the flight that would take them from Bowling Green to Orkney. “Don’t you want to see where you came from?”
To think his parents had chosen Orkney over Jamaica. He could have been lying on a beach, appraising girls in bikinis. But no, Mom was all about discovering her roots, ever since watching that stupid show on genealogy. And now he had to put up with rain and wind and make small talk with a bunch of old relatives he barely understood because their accents were so thick.
“Go stroll the beaches,” Mom had urged. “Maybe you’ll see a seal, or a selkie, as the locals call them. I hear they’re easy to spot along the shore.”
Awesome. Bored to tears, he and Jim set out on a seal-spotting expedition, when they could have been sneaking some rum into their drinks at an amazing 5-star Jamaican resort.
“I’m tired of this shit,” Jim complained. “I don’t care about seals. I’m outta here.” He pulled a joint out of his pocket. “See ya later, virgin boy. Don’t follow me.” He turned and retreated down the beach, heading back to the road leading to their B&B.
“Asshole,” George muttered. Ever since Jim had lost his virginity, he’d been acting like fucking king of the world.
On his own, his thoughts turned to girls, as they did. What was Megan doing right now? One of the reasons he hadn’t wanted to travel as far as Scotland was because it seemed a world away from the cute cheerleader back home, the one who never gave him the time of day. When he returned, he’d bite the bullet and ask her out. He wouldn’t get anywhere if he didn’t try.
George wandered for a time, plotting his seduction of Megan. As he trudged over the pebbled shoreline, droplets of rain began to hit him in the face.
“Jesus Christ. More rain? Unbelievable.”
Peeved, he scanned the shoreline, looking for a place to hide out for a while. Thunder belched in the distance and the rain drops grew fatter. He spotted a sandstone rise jutting above the beach, enough so it could provide temporary shelter. It seemed as good as place as any to wait out the inevitable storm.
As he approached the rise, he noticed some birds perched above, watching him. Big ones. He didn’t like birds but as long as they kept their distance, he didn’t care.
Making himself as comfortable as possible under the sandstone ledge, he sat on a jutting piece of stone. At first, all he heard was the pelting rain, but he quickly caught another noise.
Someone was near, and she was humming. With each disconcerting note, the sound grew closer.
George stood and looked behind him. The storm had darkened the sky and his shelter was transformed by the shadows, resembling the inside of a grotto. He wouldn’t have thought someone could hide in there, but he couldn’t see the girl.
“Is someone here?” he said. “I won’t hurt you. Are you lost?”
The hum transformed, turning into a haunting melody, sung in the sweetest female voice he’d ever heard. The voice penetrated his brain with its clarity, even though her tones were soft. It had to be the weird acoustics under the rise.
Something about her voice seemed familiar yet exotic. Each lilt seemed to seep into his body, making every part of him stand at attention. Hairs, goose pimples, cock. “Hello?”
“Hello,” she echoed in her singsong voice, giggling.
If she looked as good as she sounded, he might need to stay a little longer. Forget Jim and the stupid seals.
God, she had a sexy voice. His heart pounded. Blood raced through his veins, making his dick painfully hard. He licked his lips. “Okay.”
He took a step toward the mystery girl. As if someone had shone a light, she was illuminated by a soft aura of light. It seemed to come came from her long, golden hair.
George closed the short distance between them. She had full lips and the prettiest face he’d ever seen. And she was nude. He tried not to gawk at her full breasts and the slickness between her legs, but it was impossible. “You’re naked.”
“You’re not.” She giggled, her tits quivering with her laughter.
Jim had nothing on him.
Unable to believe his luck, George took off all his clothing. She watched him, her eyes twinkling with interest and hunger. As his body betrayed him, his cock almost reaching for her, he covered himself with his hands. I he didn’t pace himself, he’d spurt all over her.
She smiled, her teeth gleaming in the darkness, and stepped toward him. After removing his hands from his body, she stroked him, licking her lips.
“Ah, fuck. Who the hell are you?”
“Breena.” Her soft voice could have been a sigh. She removed her hand from his package and touched his hair. “Ginger hair, just like my Edan.”
“Never mind.” Her eyebrows came together in a petulant frown but she smiled. “I’m hungry for you.”
He’d read somewhere that women appreciated dirty talk. “I’m, uh, hungry for you, too.”
She shivered, and then she made a strange noise. It sounded like a squawk.
“Are you okay, Breena?”
She trembled. No, she shook. He put out his hands to steady her, but then realized something was wrong. Her skin prickled, seeming to come alive with hideous movement. Every pore seemed to open at once, and she grew paler. Whiter.
White, like the color of goose down.
“What the fuck?” George pulled his hands back. He didn’t want to touch her anymore. What kind of freak hid among the rocks and sprouted feathers?
Her gaze pinned on him, she moved and fear held him fast. She didn’t walk as she had before, with the smooth movements of a human woman.
She hopped like a bird.
Her feet now bore sharp claws and her entire body was covered in the same layer of white feathers. Crooked at the elbow, her arms resembled wings. Her face remained that of a woman’s but he could not tear his eyes away from the abomination that was her body. Feathers everywhere … even all over that amazing rack. Pink nipples peaked out from under them.
Bile rose in his throat yet he could not run. He stood still, paralyzed by fear, but even more so by her deranged humming and the melody that grew faster and louder.
Breena backed him up against the wall of stone. She leaned into him, feather against flesh. Kissing him, she opened his mouth with her woman’s tongue. He tasted his own tears as they dripped between their lips. Her clawed feet pricked his human toes.
The most sensuous kiss of his life and, at the same time, the most horrifying. She wasn’t just kissing him.
She was tasting him.
Her tongue slid over his lips, cheeks and chin and then toward his neck. The monster then stopped and regarded him with the warm gaze of a lover. She smiled and lunged toward his neck.
And then everything went black.
Edan Kirk stuck the tiny umbrellas in the cocktail glasses as he finished preparing yet another series of those God-awful fruity drinks. He was thankful so many lasses frequented The Water Horse but wished a few more of them would order ale or hard liquor. There was something emasculating in pouring out pink slush all night long.
His friend pub owner Niall Barber looked over and laughed.
Edan rolled his eyes and pushed the drinks across the bar to the waiting customers, yet another troupe of lively American women. Clustered before him at the bar, they giggled and blushed and sipped their sweet concoctions.
“Thank you, Edan,” their ring leader trilled.
He stared at the petite blonde, trying to remember her name. As soon as they’d entered the pub, they’d spotted him, made a beeline for his area and had peppered him with their names. What was hers again? Shelley? Sheila? Shana. Yes, that was it. “You’re welcome, Shana, lass.”
The women looked at each other as if Brad Pitt had just confessed his undying love for the lot of them. Her cheeks pink, Shana turned back to Edan. “Oh, God. You Orkney men have such gorgeous accents. Say my name again.”
By Freya’s tits. He stifled a sigh. If it weren’t for the fact Niall was his best friend, he might be tempted to walk out of the damned pub. However, he’d promised Niall he’d be nice. The publican relied on the tourist trade and the lasses flocked to The Water Horse because they all heard about the bartender. Edan forced a smile. “Shana.”
They squealed as one horny unit of tipsy women. He supposed he couldn’t blame them for their exuberance. After all, they had no idea what they were up against.
The selkie folk, his people, held a certain sway over humans. Anyone from Orkney could tell tales of the “mythical” selkie folk, seal shape shifters. Their sexual adventures were the basis of much folklore in these parts. And anyone from this part of Scotland would swear selkies had a reputation for being astounding lovers, better than any human could ever hope to be. Selkies embraced their sensual sides and it allowed them to harness a sexual power of which mortals only dreamed.
The abilities of those like him made for major fantasy material, which was why Niall milked the hell out of the legends. Edan had recently added to his list of duties at the pub. Not only did he tend bar, he acted as unofficial storyteller for The Water Horse.
When Niall spotted customers who were ready to leave the pub, Edan would spin some choice yarns of intrigue and romance. Sure enough, the culture-hungry tourists would stick around for another drink.
But that didn’t mean Edan didn’t grow tired of exploiting his heritage. Others might think it a bit of fluff, but to him, it was history. And every selkie knew it was best humans never learned selkies were real.
He began to walk away when Shana called out to him. “Edan. Tell us again about how to find a selkie lover.”
Damn. He might be patient, but even he had his limits.
Niall, pouring pints for other customers, called out. “Go on, Edan. Tell them.”
He stood before them and crossed his arms, noting how their gazes followed the curves of his arms. He’d keep it short and sweet this time. “They say if you cry seven tears into the sea, you can call a selkie. And if you steal his selkie pelt after he’s shifted into human form, he’ll be obliged to pleasure you as long as you keep it.”
Shana’s gaze dropped and lingered below his waist. “You’d make an awesome selkie.”
“Don’t get your hopes up, lass. Selkies don’t exist.”
At another time Edan might have succumbed to her pretty pout. Hell, he might have taken her home and shagged her all night long. But for some strange reason, he just wasn’t in the mood.
Stay tuned, selkie lovers!