Hi, romance readers! I'm moving my book excerpt share days around a bit and, today, I thought I'd share a little something from my work in progress, Storm Tide. Karr and Isdra's story is book 4 in the Tides of Atlantis series. I'm having so much fun with the couple in this book. Karr and Isdra have sparks flying right from the beginning. This scene here is when they, finally, meet up for real...
Storm Tide Excerpt:
“In here,” Isdra grunted under the weight of the Northman. She and Sven had dragged him from the alley behind the museum. The look of surprise on Sven’s face when the giant of a man went down from the blow to the head he’d administered would have been laughable if not for the situation.
“Isdra,” Sven panted as they tugged the warrior into her room, “tell me again why we can’t call the police? This madman chased you through town with murder in his eyes.”
“No police,” Isdra said. They both heaved together as they pulled him unceremoniously onto the bed. “It would draw too much attention.”
She knew that explanation made no sense. Sven looked at her as though she’d gone mad. The assassins had said ‘no police,’ not that she’d even thought of enlisting the humans’ to help her cause. What could they do? She was dealing with ancient curses here, enchanted swords and the like. She couldn’t tell anyone that, certainly not Sven. He still thought of her as hapless foreigner with amnesia. He had no idea she belonged to a completely different species from a realm of warring kingdoms beneath the sea. The humans loved their fairytales, but she knew better than to suggest to any of them that the creatures they thought of as ‘mermaids’ really did exist.
“That makes no sense, Isdra,” Sven voiced the words in her head. “He tried to kill you.”
The man on the bed groaned, but his eyes remained closed.
“Shh, Sven, don’t wake him.”
Sven crossed his arms, giving her a cross look. She couldn’t remember him ever looking at her like that before. It made her want to laugh, but she held it in. Poor Sven. Here he was, helping her yet again. She could tell though that he was at the end of his rope. A light bulb went off in her head at that idea.
“We need some rope,” she said.
“Yes, to tie him with.” She rolled her eyes. This whole situation had her at her wits end. How in the world had the Viking man survived the sea? When he woke, she would make him tell her everything. Then he would give her the sword. He didn’t have it on him, but he had to be hiding it somewhere. She looked down at the giant of a man her friend had managed to clobber over the head. His clothes from before were gone—all of his warrior’s furs and leather. Now, he wore a black, tight fitting Norhtface jacket over a gray thermal undershirt with a dark blue athletic t-shirt over, a dark pair of snow pants and boots. The muscles in his arms and chest couldn’t even begin to be camouflaged by all the layers. Just like before, in the cave, the sight of him left her breathless.
She looked up from the man to Sven who stood there, staring at her with a strange look on his ruddy face.
“Go,” she whispered, “quickly. We need to get him tied before he wakes up again.”
She looked back down at the Viking. The big man was so much more pleasant when asleep. Where had that thought come from? She really had gone insane.
“I’m not going to leave you here alone with him!” Sven whisper yelled.
“What are you going to do?”
“What do you mean what am I going to do?” Isdra had about had it with her friend. He might be loyal, but he did not take orders well—would not make a good warrior. “I’m going to take off his clothes!”
Sven looked absolutely scandalized. Isdra shook her head.
“Oh, for… er… sky’s sakes, or whatever you all say, Sven.” She made an annoyed sweep of her arm to indicate the outside even though they were in her basement apartment and she didn’t have a window. “A naked man can’t run away in the snow now can he?”
Sven’s jaw dropped. He looked from her to the unconscious man on the bed.
Isdra had had enough.
Without another word, he shook his head and left. Isdra turned back to the task at hand.
“Yes, right,” she began mumbling to herself, “men without clothes don’t run off in sub degree temperatures. And that is why I am doing this. That’s the only reason I’m touching you. The. Only. Reason.”
You beautiful, golden beast of a man, she added in her head. She let out a small disgusted sound even as the palms of her hands tingled.
“Gods, do you have to be so good looking?” She asked of no one within hearing.
Oh-so-gingerly she undid the zip on his coat then, one at a time, she pulled them off his arms—no easy task considering how heavy they were and the whole time she worried he’d wake. Fortunately, he slept on. Next, she reached out for the hem of his shirt very carefully. A breath away from his belt line, the warrior inhaled. His stomach bumped against her fingertips. She jumped back, freezing in place at the contact. He let out a loud snore, the sound rattling Isdra’s frayed nerves even more. She waited for several seconds, but he remained asleep. Breathing a sigh of relief, she moved close to him again, looking him over in the low light of her bedroom.
His hair was the color of late summer wheat, a shade lighter than his amber eyes. Dark blue designs crept up his skin on one side of his neck then disappeared beneath his shirt. The soft rise and fall of his breathing pulled her focus to his torso, lulling her with its rhythm, making her realize how tired she’d become all of a sudden. His chest seemed like a really nice place to lie down. He was so broad. Everything about him looked warm and inviting, the perfect cushion on a cold winter’s night.
“Ridiculous, Isdra,” she scolded herself, “some Arelani warrior you are! Going and getting flustered at the sight of a man.” She shook her head then started pulling at his clothing, starting with his boots. “If your father, the king could only see you now…” one heavy wet shoe fell to the floor then the other, “… losing your edge,” she pulled off a sock, “breaking concentration and getting… what is it the humans say? Dis-com-boobed?” then the next. Ignoring his lower region for the time being, because there was only so much she could stand at one time, she moved up and yanked both of the shirts he wore up to the middle of his rock hard belly. Sweet gods, the feel of him! He was indeed as warm as he looked, with skin like velvet poured over chiseled stone. Closing her eyes—mostly—she wrestled the shirts the rest of the way off of him.
When she did look, all the air left her lungs and her mouth went dry. It looked as though the Nordic gods had forged him specifically for an example of what a warrior should look like. He was so tall his feet hung off the end of her small bed. Every line and ridge of his abdomen stood out distinctly under his golden skin. The tattoos on his neck stretched down and fanned out over his chest. They covered both of his arms, trailing intricately over his entire torso in the sharp angled patterns of the ancient Norse. Over one side of his chest, a dragon curved all the way across his shoulder and down his arm, flames flying out of its mouth. Intricate designs travelled all the way the side of his torso, over his hip and abdomen, disappearing down beneath the top of his pants.
His pants that her fingers were curling into the waistband of even as she stood there drooling. Isdra blinked, realizing that she’d not only drank in the sight of his entire bare upper half with her eyes, but she’d also felt every inch with her hands. She looked at the space of fabric below her fists, her mouth going dry when she noticed the sizable bulge there. Oh! That place between the tops of her legs clenched.
Her stare jumped up to his face. He still slept. But… was there the slightest hint of a smile on his lips? Impossible. Footsteps clunked down the three stairs to the lower level of the small museum that she called home. Isdra rolled her eyes once more at Sven’s lack of stealth. Quickly, she grabbed the blanket off the floor and threw it over the warrior. He could keep the pants.
Once Sven entered the room they proceeded to tie him to the bed. With a last glance at the man in her bed, she left, locking the door behind her.
If you haven't started the Tides of Atlantis series yet, here's the reading order so far. You can find them on Amazon and even read them for free on Kindle Unlimited! Descriptions and buy links can be found here under the "Books" tab.
King of the Tides
About the Author
Amanda V Shane is an author of paranormal and fantasy romance and is currently working on her Tides of Atlantis series about the super hot lost kings of Atlantis as well as her Enchanted Lands Romances.