With rock-hard fortitude, Marohka Taunton battles to maintain her position as top mineralogist and refuses to see why she should marry even if the law requires she take a mate. Fighting her attraction for Stihl Fermesium, she struggles to save her father's company.
Stihl, determined to win her as his mate, is faced with the commission deal of a lifetime and needs the money to save his family land. He wrestles with her emotional resistance and discovers someone other than Marohka is unhappy about their union. In fact, they want to separate them in the most basic of ways, death.
The car drew into a covered station. A large plaza stood next to it. Colorful robes, white turbans, leather jackets, all types of attire graced the bodies walking around carrying shopping totes. Red, blue, and blond-haired children played on small multi-tier rockets. A solar-powered jet lifted them to the top. Long tubes spiraled around and through the center of the display, which sent the children on a wild ride to the sandy playground below.
“This building has a mall and offices connected to it, so you never have to leave the area. It’s all right here.” Stihl captured her hand upon disembarking.
Marohka waited until Cyd cleared the door with the luggage before she tugged her hand free. “I don’t need any help.”
He smiled. She strolled past him and entered the lobby. He stopped her by laying a hand on her waist. “I wasn’t helping. I was touching.” He drew her up against his chest. “You keep forgetting we’re a couple.”
Her anger demanded she shout at him, but in a controlled whisper, she fought his rights. “We haven’t blended. And with your current rate of charm, it won’t happen any time soon.”
His eyes twinkled. Marohka wanted badly to knock the humor out of him with a punch to the gut. But before she could respond, he shocked her with a light kiss on the cheek.
“We’ll see.” His arm still around her waist, he led her toward the lift. “We’d better get moving. Cyd’s waiting.”
With him so close, the urge to ram her elbow in his stomach almost became a reality. Until as if reading her mind, he shifted his hand over her arm. He kept her from doing any damage. In the lift, Marohka stood very still. Even though she wanted to step away from him, he held her close to his side. The heat radiating from him smothered her with his presence.
Tantalizing thoughts teased her mind. Her heart raced. Every touch awoke nerve endings, which sizzled over her skin. She couldn’t breathe or relax. His hand caressed her waist, his breath ruffled her hair, and his chest crowded her shoulder. She shifted on her feet, and her arm brushed his bicep. The desire to wrestle him to the ground battled with the need to run away.
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