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Check out this excerpt from my hot new paranormal erotic romance series Charmed in Paradise!
The beach volleyball game was in full swing but Tara’s eyes were glued to the guy in the yellow swim trunks. His bronze skin glistened with a combination of sweat and sunscreen in the hot Caribbean sun, and she fixated on the muscles of his legs rippling beneath his skin as he moved smoothly across the sand. Although he was a little thin for her taste, his shoulders were broad and well-muscled and his chest was what could only be described as chiseled. But it was his perfectly flat stomach and narrow waist that had all of Tara’s attention. His body reminded her of Channing Tatum in…what was the name of that movie? Oh yeah, Magic Mike.
The thought brought a tingle between her thighs that made her shiver in the tropical heat.
Their lounge chairs were front row center of the beach volleyball court packed with sexy, toned bodies actively engaged in friendly competition. Beside the court an island woman and her little daughter sold jewelry from a small shack. A large hand-painted wooden sign on the front of the shack proclaimed “Handmade Jewelry and Fortunes Told.” It was a popular place for vacationers, who seemed to be drawn to the island-themed jewelry and unable to resist the temptation of indulging in a psychic reading in the back room of the tiny hut.
Tara made a mental note to head over and check out the place later. It would be fun to take home something handmade from paradise and might even help her forget her awful breakup—Hell, she might even have her fortune told.
“Not a bad view, huh?” her best friend Sophie quipped from the lounge chair next to her. “But maybe you should put your tongue back in your mouth before it gets sunburned.”
Tara looked over at her blonde friend in the barely-there bikini that showcased her considerable assets. Tara couldn’t help but admire Sophie’s long, shapely legs, small waist and perfectly perky breasts. The two had been besties since junior high school and Tara had always envied Sophie’s figure. Tara was wearing a black one piece suit with a thick ruffle across the chest to downplay her D-cup breasts. A black sarong with teal and brown hibiscus flowers tied around her waist hid what she considered to be an overly large bottom.
Tara had always been a big girl. She was tall (a shade over five-eleven) and since puberty had been curvy with large breasts, a thick waist and an ample butt. All the dieting and exercise she did never seemed to put a dent in any of those assets. What she really wanted was to have the waif-like body of her best friend. But she loved Sophie in spite of her friend’s physical perfection.
“Was I that obvious?” asked Tara. Sophie laughed and said, “I think it was the puddle of drool that gave you away.”
“Come on Sophie, cut me a little slack, I’ll bet it’s been three months since I saw a man who wasn’t wearing a parka and mukluks and here I am, faced with a smorgasbord of glistening skin—who could blame me?”
Sophie looked at Tara over her Ray-Bans and said, “Speaking of which, how long has it been since you’ve seen a naked man …in the flesh, that is.”
The very thought of doing the math on that question depressed Tara, so she picked up the glass that held a magical fruit and rum concoction from the beachside bar, took a long sip and returned her attention to the volleyball game. The guy in the yellow swim trunks leapt high into the air, his tight little butt clearly visible in his sweat-soaked trunks as he attempted to block a shot from a guy on the other team who she now noticed was almost as attractive as the guy in the yellow trunks.
How had she not seen that guy? Back in the day she never would have missed that. Her game was definitely slipping. Tara felt the dark cloud of doubt that had been following her around lately creep back in.
Sensing her friend’s change in mood Sophie picked up her own glass.
“I’d like to propose a toast. To best friends!” Sophie extended her glass toward her friend. Tara turned and reached out with her glass to seal the toast but stopped midway.
“Wait—here’s to best friends—in Barbados!” Sophie’s smiled broadened. “To best friends in Barbados” she said “and may they have a magical adventure!” The girls giggled and touched glasses with a hearty clink, then drank deeply.
Tara could hardly believe that she and Sophie were actually here in Barbados. It just didn’t feel real. Sophie had insisted…for the most part had kidnapped her, bringing her here to this super high-end luxury five-star resort. She knew Sophie was right. She deserved this, mainly because the last two years had been so hellish; lately it seemed like whatever could go wrong had gone wrong.
It had started at work when they announced that they were going to be cutting back. During the layoffs she had been terrified she would lose her job and in fact she had barely managed to keep it, proving to her boss that she was more valuable than one of the other girls in the office by putting in extra-long hours and landing a big account in the week before the last cuts. But after the layoffs she began to think that the people who’d gotten canned might have been the lucky ones. The work load was crushing and she ended up doing the jobs of three people. Those long hours became the norm and she found herself barely seeing her live-in boyfriend and fiancé Richard.
Then came the bombshell. Out of the blue Richard announced he needed “some space.”
He packed up his stuff after their trip to Iron Mountain and moved out. At first she thought he was overreacting to her long hours at work and that if she gave him a little time he would come to his senses. He certainly wasn’t going to just throw away six years of their life over this rough patch, was he?
But he never came to his senses. In fact he stopped calling, and after a few weeks she began to really worry. One day she got an email from him saying that he was calling off the wedding, that he had found someone new and he was moving on with his life. She tried to call him and reason with him. For God’s sake, they’d been a couple for six years, couldn’t they try to work this out? But she was shocked to discover that he had changed his number. When she called his mother, all she would say was that Richard was moving on and it was probably best if Tara did the same. She was devastated.
She moped around for months and threw herself into her work. If it hadn’t been for Sophie, who kept her from sinking completely, Tara would probably own ten or twelve cats by now and be spending her evenings watching reality TV.
For the last few months, things seemed to be getting better. At work business picked up and the company began to hire new people. Her work load decreased and her boss actually gave her a sizable bonus and a raise. The deep funk that had swallowed her whole seemed to lift a little and she began to feel hopeful. But then…
Her thoughts were interrupted by something bumping hard against her leg then landing next to her beach chair. She absentmindedly reached down and picked up the object.
She looked up and found the guy in the yellow shorts standing directly in front of her, sweat dripping off his spectacularly muscled body. For the first time she got a good look at him. She definitely liked what she saw.
His thighs were thick and while not huge, had a very nice shape. His upper body was an inverted pyramid with wide shoulders plunging to a crazy small waist and he had a deep muscular V at the front of his hips. His stomach was flat but rippled with that washboard appearance that she found so sexy, and his face was red and flushed, which for some reason really turned her on… he looked sexy hot!
All Tara could think was, “Wow, he looks like he just had sex—really great sex!” She got goose bumps, nipples stiffening and blood racing.
He said something to her but because her brain was caught up in her bawdy thoughts she couldn’t quite grasp his meaning. So she said the only thing she could get her mouth to say, which was, “Huh?”
Yellow shorts leaned in a little closer. “Umm, the ball. Can I have the ball?”
“What ball?” stammered Tara.
“The ball you’re holding,” he gestured downward, and his face broke into the most adorable crooked grin. Tara looked down and for the first time realized she was holding—yep, it was definitely a volley ball.
“Oh, this ball,” she whispered as she glanced at it absently.
“Yes, that ball.”
Tara looked around and everyone seemed to be staring at her. Oh God.
She looked back at yellow shorts… well actually she looked right at his crotch which was right at eye level, the intriguing shape of his junk clearly visible in his tight, wet, yellow trunks.
In some small corner of her mind a voice said “everyone is looking at you looking—no—staring at this gorgeous guy’s crotch,” but for some reason she couldn’t seem to stop herself and she continued to stare.
“Ahem,” yellow shorts cleared his throat.
Tara tore her eyes away from his ample package, and croaked.
“Uh, the ball?” he asked.
“The ball…yes you want the ball. She laughed nervously. “Here ya go,” and finally tossed him the ball.
Yellow shorts trotted back to the volleyball court shaking his head, and Tara’s gaze followed his bouncing buns the whole way.
From the lounge chair next to her she heard Sophie say, “Wow…that was smooth, Mathers. Good to see you haven’t lost your mojo after all this time, pal!”
Tara took another deep drink from her glass, sighed deeply, sat back in her lounge chair, closed her eyes and promptly fell asleep.