The Jaguar and the Redhead
Mainstream Romance: Contemporary, Interracial/Multicultural, Paranormal
Cover Artist: Ash Roland
Editor: Lara Parker
Line Editor: Sara Hermann
Word Count: 56,532
Release Date: November 11, 2010
A shape shifting Latino research scientist from New York and a telepathic Wyoman buffalo rancher are thrown together following a plane crash on a remote island in the South Pacific. During a recent raid on his research compound, Elejandro’s yacht and his assistant, Jerry were taken by Gunther Wolsey and his gang of mercenaries. Without the yacht, Robina is stranded, so she agrees to help him get them back. And, while enduring a hefty wallop of jungle life during their four-day canoe journey to Luizao, where Gunther and his gunslingers hang out, Elejandro brings Robina’s most secret sexual fantasies to fruition.
In Luizao, they find Gunther forcing hundreds of Latino farmers to either slave in a massive open pit gold mine or loot sacred Incan golden artifacts hidden deep in a dangerous cave. To rid the island of Gunther’s gang, the villagers join forces with Robina, Jerry and Elejandro and the conflict escalates.
While embroiled in outwitting the gang, the professor and the redheaded telepath still make time for sharing their red hot chemistry.
But, will Robina lose interest in developing her own latent powers after Elejandro’s black jaguar displays its fierce killing power? Will it wipe out happily-ever-after thoughts?
Elejandro sidled up to Robina. “You don’t want to embarrass me with a rejection, do you?” He glanced around at the noisy groups. The guys will notice and think you’re getting a little choosy. Now teach me how to dance the ‘forro’.”
She blew out a relaxing breath and loosened her tight stomach muscles. “My pleasure. It’s easy. Your right leg goes between my legs. The idea is to stay wedged together. Real close.” With his deep golden fiery eyes burning into hers and dark hair flowing down his molded bronzed back, he was indisputably sensually magnificent. Mentally blotting out the noise and the dangerous atmosphere, she wrapped herself up in his muscular arms and vibrant energy.
While they were in position and waiting for the music to begin again, she pushed her newly colored brown hair off her forehead and looked up at him. “Move the hips . . . pay attention to the hips. That’s the main focus when it comes to the forro.”
The music started and her right hand held his left one. His right hand slipped around her back, and her left hand circled his neck. Left, left, right, right. Shuffle and slide. With their thighs glued together, moving as one, she encouraged him to vary direction and dance in a circle like some of the others. He surprised her when he spun her around in various ways.
Part of the music now, completely blind to the dancers around her, she poured herself more and more into the rhythmic beat. The stifling, violently hot, humid environs no longer bothered her. With her hips grinding against his and setting off a painful torturous pleasure between her legs, she quickly became caught up in the frantic rhythm of the squeeze box, triangle and drum. No doubt about it: forro was unquestionably the sexiest folk dance on earth.
In Spanish, the band members sang songs that spoke of longing, jealousy and passion, and she wrapped herself up in a rapturous trance. As an alien in this island of impenetrable jungle growth, she was surprised by the way she responded to the rhythm of this local dance. Forro was in her blood. All she needed was the chance to experience it.
She knew Elejandro’s Spanish blood—with a heavy splash of African roots—was caught up in its wildness, too. He claimed a good deal of the dance floor as his own, completely lost in the moment.
Desperate to celebrate her youth and good health after her close brush with death last week, she’d been dying to be swirled off and carried away by the music. Responding to her needs, she entangled herself in his arms. Grinding her pelvis against his, she allowed the wildness of his animal spirit to enter her body and drug her. Intoxicated, she fed off his mind-bending energy and allowed his sparkling golden eyes and earthy scent to relay magical heated messages. With his thigh insinuated between hers, a whirlwind of sound and desire swept her up in a whirlwind of passion.
With Elejandro’s heat running red hot, she sensed the beast within him. His aroma, thick, rich, sharp and musky, awakened something inside her that produced a rush of cosmic all-embracing energy. With her cheek against his, strong vibrations assailed her. Tingly electricity flashes zapped her cells, tissue and bones in an increasingly dizzying onslaught. Entwined in his exotic aura, she danced with the jaguar, the symbol of femininity, sleekness and sensuality.
Elejandro’s gasp brought her out of her reverie. When the music stopped, he spoke in a whisper. “Look at the man standing at the far end of the bar. The one with the wild unruly black hair. That’s Gunther. I’m sure of it. The description we were given … the mouth full of gold teeth, tight ray-bans … short, stocky, the muscles of a weight lifter. Even the scar pulling down the side of his mouth fits the description.”
Robina froze for a moment. “He knows what you look like, doesn’t he?”
“Yeah. He probably does. If his boys spied on Jerry, it’s only natural to assume they monitored me for awhile and took my picture.” Pulling his hair back, he tied it in a knot at the back of his head and put his baseball hat back on, dipping the brim low in front.
A sickening chill raced through her. She’d experienced it once before when she found herself hopelessly lost in the jungle. She’d been ensnared in the rushing hungry gloom, vines sprouting all around her, while she’d desperately tried to escape from the strange shapes and menacing shadows.
Taking Elejandro’s hand, she led him away from the perimeter of the dance floor and into the center where sweaty bodies picked up the beat of the next song. “Let’s dance,” she said into his ear, “just push your head into my hair and let me lead you out of here.”
Moments later, when a drunken guy directed a few lewd comments their way as they slipped out the entrance, she hoped Gunther wouldn’t be too curious about the objects of the jerk’s derision.
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