Dawn Marie Hamilton
Crimson Storm ~ a Paranormal Romance Series
Sea Panther by Dawn Marie Hamilton
Can love mend a fractured soul?
2013 GOLDEN HEART® Finalist
3rd place ~ Paranormal Category, 2010 Touch of Magic Contest
sponsored by Central Florida Romance Writers
2nd place ~ Paranormal Category, 2009 Hot Prospects Contest
sponsored by Valley of the Sun Romance Writers
After evading arrest for Jacobite activities, Scottish nobleman Robert MacLachlan turns privateer. A Caribbean Voodoo priestess curses him to an eternal existence as a vampire shifter torn between the dual natures of a
Although she swore never to sail again after her father died in a sailing accident, Kimberly Scot answers the captain's crew wanted ad to escape a hit man. She's lost everything, her fiancé, her job, and most of her money, along with money belonging to her ex-clients. A taste of Kimberly's blood convinces Robert she is the one woman who can claim the panther's heart. To break the curse, they travel back in time to where it all began—
Read excerpt below...
Learn about the endangered Florida Panther...
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Colin sent a woman for Robert to interview. Why? The man knew better.
Before he could wrap his mind around the why of his first mate's actions, a knock sounded at the door.
"Enter," he yelled and continued to stare at the garden through the private dining room's paned windows. He acted rude, but he wanted to get control of his battling emotions before he faced the woman who managed to convince Colin to recommend her.
The sound of a feminine throat clearing stiffened his spine, and he whirled around to face the woman. His breath left him in a rush. Before him, stood the lass who haunted his dreams for the past night and day—since he saw her on the street and returned her scarf. The simple touch of their fingers had produced sparks. Remnants of the intense jolt of power that released the panther from his tight restraints continued to surge through his blood.
He needed to be wary of this dangerous woman. He couldn't hire her; have her near him, night after night, for the entire duration of a cruise. Too great would be temptation.
Robert studied her tall, slim form. She appeared elegant even though casually dressed. Her soft chocolate eyes gazed at him from a sculpted ivory face framed by shoulder length curly brown hair. His gaze fed on lush lips that begged for passionate kisses.
When her tongue darted out and moistened those lips, every muscle in his body clenched. Fire raced through his veins. He was lost.
He couldn't allow it.
He stiffened his resolve.
"Please, have a seat," he reluctantly offered.
Her eyes glimmered with recognition, and she smiled. "Captain MacLachlan?"
"Aye." He waved toward a chair. "Sit." He clenched his jaw, his voice sounded gruffer than he'd intended. Just as well, he didn't want her encouraged.
She dropped into a chair. A perplexed expression played on her perfect features.
"What is your name?" he asked.
"I...I'm sorry." She jumped up and reached out her hand. "Kimberly Scot."
"Robert MacLachlan, Captain of Sea Panther." He hesitated before shaking her hand. Would her touch produce the same effect as on their last meeting? He tightened his control on the panther and grasped her slender hand.
Her eyes widened.
He yanked his arm away; extinguished the unwanted flame of lust hardening his loins. This woman was trouble.
"Sit," he barked.
Though her hands trembled, she did as directed.
Robert poured wine into two goblets from the bottle chilling in an ice bucket on the wet bar. He handed her one, careful not to make contact with her fingers. "I own this establishment. The wine is excellent."
"Thank you," she said politely as she took the glass.
He grunted. God, he was being rude.
He paced a few feet away. Far enough not to reach for her. The lingering sensation from their brief handshake made him edgy. The pulse at her neck called to the vampire. And the panther, demanding his mate, fought against the bonds to which Robert tethered the animal.
"You want to crew on Sea Panther?"
Uncertainty flickered in her eyes before she said, "Yes."
Was she afraid? Aye. He could smell her trepidation. Although it was best she fear him, the thought didn't sit well.
"Why do you want to crew for me?"
"I need a job."
Her dark brows rose in a graceful arch. "Do you?"
"What experience do you have?"
"I sailed with my father when I was a teenager."
Robert ignored the pinch in his chest and slid his gaze over her too-slim form. He lingered on the curve of her breast before gradually directing his gaze higher. Satisfied when she blushed, he said, "Not to be insulting, but you haven't been a teenager for a long time."
The angry tilt of her chin exposed the sweet, soft, tempting length of her throat. His fangs punched through his gums and he had to force himself to concentrate on her words.
"My father was Jimmy Scot. I'm sure you've heard of him."
Indeed. Fast Jimmy had won more international yacht races than any of his contemporaries. Why was his daughter seeking a job on Sea Panther? Although the lass wore quality garments, Colin believed she struggled without resources.
"When was the last time you sailed?"
"Before my father died." She pinned him with a look. "Listen, I need a job, and I'm a good sailor."
Robert released an annoyed breath. The lass must be in a dire situation if she'd no one to turn to other than him. Damn the woman. She would have to appeal to his honor.
He grudgingly had to admit he respected her for standing up to him. Few dared.
She held his gaze while she waited for a response. Her imploring brown eyes slashed his defenses. Robert didn't want to give in. He should send her away.
He retreated to the other side of the room and sat on the red leather sofa. With one leg crossed over the other knee, he tried to appear unaffected by her presence. He observed her as he morosely pretended to sip from his goblet of wine, wishing the crystal glass contained her blood.
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