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Piers Anthony

By Piers Anthony

Chapter One: Doris

Doris knew that look: her son had something on his mind, and he would not relent until it was settled. He was four years old, handsome and imperious, with a certain literal magic. Worse, she was constitutionally unable to resist him. “What is it, son?”

“The other kids in nursery school have moms and dads. Who is my dad, and why isn't he around?”

Doris glanced at Nerine, who stood behind the boy. The nude nanny spread her hands apologetically. She must have tried to deflect the question, but Neris would not be denied. He had a remarkable vocabulary and knew the verbal tricks others tried to use for evasion. There was no choice except to tackle it directly. “I will tell, you, son, but you must not tell anyone else.”

“Why not?” he demanded, only slightly shy of belligerence.

“Because they will laugh at you and call you a liar.”

“I'm not a liar!” he said angrily.

“I know, son, but they will not believe it if you tell them. It is better to avoid that hassle.”

“What, is he a king or something?”

It had to come out. “Not exactly, Neris. He is a god.”

“What's a god?”

Just so. “A god is a supernatural being, a person with powers beyond the normal ones. You might call them magic. Your father is a god of the deep sea. He has to stay there.”

The boy digested that. It was evidently more of an answer than he had anticipated. He looked at Nerine. “You know about this?”

“Yes, Neris. He is my father too. I am your half sister.”

That hardly fazed him. “You're magic too?”

“Of course. That's why regular folk can't see me. Only you and your mother.”

Neris nodded, not completely surprised. “That's why you have such good luck. It's magic.”

“Yes. Father sent me to take care of you so you wouldn't get in trouble.”

He scowled. “You always know what I'm planning.”

“Of course. I can read your mean little mind.”

Neris knew from experience that he couldn't get around her. He returned his attention to Doris, who was easier to get around. “What's his name?”


“If he can't leave the sea, and you can't leave the land, how did you meet?”

Nerine's pretty mouth made a silent O of appreciation. That was a sharp question.

“That is a special story,” Doris said carefully. “There are adult elements. You may not be ready for it yet.”

The boy's jaw set firmly. “I am ready. Tell me.”

Doris exchanged a look with Nerine. She was stuck for it. “I suspect it is time. I will tell you, while Nerine gets you ready for dinner and bed.”


It was a scene from the Tennessee Waltz. Doris and her sweetheart were at the dance, and she ran into an old girlfriend. She introduced the two, and they danced together, beautifully, and suddenly Doris knew that all was lost. Sure enough, her friend stole her sweetheart from her. It wasn't intentional, and both of them were apologetic, which didn't make it any easier: it was instant love and Doris was the ex. All she could do was wish them well and go home to morn alone.

Her life was like that: she was always the bridesmaid, never the bride. The key breaks always went against her. She gazed in the mirror and saw a distressingly average woman in her early twenties, with dull brown hair worn short, gray eyes, and an expression of vague regret. The kind who generally escaped serious notice. She had taken a temporary job at a minimum-wage fast food outlet because it was within walking distance, and then never found a permanent job to move up to. She had dated a reasonably handsome man because he asked, but before things got sufficiently serious had lost him to her more glamorous friend. Ever thus: that was her motto. Now all she could do was carry on and hope faintly for better luck in the future. Not that luck had ever been much of a friend.

In one sense it seemed like eternity, and in another a minute; actually it was about a year. She heard a distant kind of music, an unfamiliar yet wholly compelling melody. It called her with its eerie seduction, beckoning her to some distant rapture, the kind she seldom if ever aspired to. “Do you hear that?” she asked a neighbor, who looked at her blankly. Apparently it was for her alone. Doris—come to me. Come to me.

This was crazy. She had never been subject to hallucinations or eerie voices. She was a dull practical woman with no interest at all in the supernatural. So was this the onset of a mental disease? But she felt entirely rational in every other respect.

Doris—come to meee. The thing was preternaturally beautiful, in its annoying fashion. And how did it know her name? This made no sense at all.

She checked her ears, thinking there could be a receiving device in there somehow, but there was none. Meanwhile the summons was growing more pressing. It was directional; she knew exactly which way to go. Come to mee-eee!

“Come to whom?” she inquired grammatically. There was no answer, just the intensifying repetition. As with an itch that had to be scratched or a cough that had to be coughed, she had to oblige it or figuratively drag her feet as it hauled on her spirit with increasing vigor. Worse, it wasn't limited to her ears; there was an increasing urgency in her groin, as though she had to urinate, or something.

Or something? That was a sexual feeling, as if she were a bitch in heat, needing fulfillment by any male who happened by. Outrageous; she was a virgin with no particular hankering for that sort of thing. Yet it persisted, increasing.

Was she being summoned to a mating, like an animal? That infuriated her, yet the need for that kind of release was growing. Disgusting! She was no horny male to be foolishly lured to her death by the sexual promise of a siren.

She tried to resist its summons, but the urge overpowered her will and she had to follow it, for good or ill. She hastily packed some food and a change of socks and panties, locked the house, and set off afoot, guided by that imperative song. It would have been much faster by car, but she couldn't afford even a rattletrap. Fortunately the ocean shore was not far distant, and by nightfall she was crossing the beach and contemplating the sea. The summons came from there. Was she to dive in, heedless of her clothing? The song still called, and her groin still hungered. She cursed the need, but hardly hesitated. She doffed her outfit and hid it under a deck chair together with her purse and bag. That was hardly safe, even at night, but her urgency prevented any more careful preparation. She contemplated the dark water, took a deep breath, then waded into the chill water nude. There was a certain illicit thrill to her naughtiness, together with nervousness about the deeps; she wasn't that good a swimmer. What about sharks? Deadly jellyfish? But none of it held her back long; the song overpowered hesitation. She swam past the moored boats and into the bay. What now? Was she to be an unexplained suicide?

A wind stirred, then a current. In moments she was swept into a developing whirlpool where none should be. It sucked her down, down, into the depths of the sea.

She realized bemusedly that she should have been terrified, but she wasn't; the song sustained her equilibrium. She should have been drowning in the horrible swirl, but she wasn't. She was merely riding it down, faster and faster, into the dark depth. She knew she was finally getting where she was going, and that her awful need would soon be somehow sated.

The tornado rush of it carried her spinning to the bottom, and abruptly dissipated, leaving her in a well of air in the water, with the sides rising vertically into the darkness above. The whirlpool had been frozen in place. This was not credible, but she realized belatedly that this must be a dream; credibility did not count.

She stood before a glassy portal. She might have paused to consider whether to pass through it, but the song in her mind and groin was too potent to resist. She stepped into it, and lo! there was pleasantly sweet air.

She appeared to be in a private lady's suite, replete with bed, dressing table, chairs, clothes closet, and bathroom. There were feminine curtains on the windows. What was this doing down here under the sea?

“Salutation, Doris.”

Doris jumped. She hadn't noticed the lovely woman in one of the chairs. “Uh, hello, I'm sure. If I may ask--?”

“Certainly. I am Doris.”

“But that's my name!”

The woman shook out her sea-green tresses. “And thereby hangs a relevant story. You have much to learn before you proceed to your tryst with my husband.”

“Tryst!” Doris exclaimed. “Husband? I have no intention of doing any such thing with anyone's husband!” Yet here she stood, naked, with burning groin.

“Not as long as you remain here in my boudoir, where the summoning song is largely nullified.”

Doris realized that her desperate urgency had abated significantly when she entered the suite. She was able at last to relax. That was a phenomenal relief. “If that is your doing, you have my appreciation. You can't imagine what I have been experiencing.”

“Oh, indeed I can,” the woman said. “Every time Nereus sings, I am compelled to go generate another daughter. I am fed up with it, but can't resist his magic. Unless I remain here, which I have spelled to block out that particular sound.” She took a deep breath, which stretched her laced bodice. She was quite well endowed.

“Nereus?” Doris asked blankly. She realized in the background of her attention that though she remained bare, she wasn't cold; the boudoir was comfortable.

“My lascivious spouse. That is part of his magic: the male siren song. His lust cannot be denied, as you may have noticed.”

Doris worked it out. “Your husband sings, and it makes women desperate to—to oblige his lewdness? That's what I felt? What brought me here into the sea?”

“You have it, my dear. The women who can hear him, at any rate. Now may we talk?”

“I think we had better. I want you to know that I have no intention of—of indulging your husband. In fact I wouldn't have come here, had I had any choice. But that infernal song--”

“Exactly. You had no choice. Please, dear, sit down so we can converse relaxed. There is so much to cover.”

Clearly that was the case. “You said your name was Doris. The same as mine. Is that coincidence?”

“Not at all. Let me explain.”

“By all means.” Doris was now more than ready to listen.

“I am Doris, a minor sea goddess, daughter of the titans Oceanus and Tethys, who are siblings.”

“Brother and sister? But--”

“Exactly,” Doris repeated. “Also husband and wife. They are two of the children of Uranus, god of heaven, and Gaea, goddess of the earth. My grandparents by both lines. Such intermarriage is common among the gods, as they dislike diluting their godliness by indulging with mortals. Unless a mortal is a particularly attractive girl, or there is some other reason. You of the mortal persuasion may find this awkward, but we do not.”

Doris was stunned. “You—you really are gods? Supernatural creatures? I find it hard to believe that gods even exist, let alone that they openly practice incest.”

“It becomes worse. Uranus was not only Gaea's husband, but her son. She hated him, and finally plotted with their youngest son Cronus, my uncle, to attack him, castrate him, and dethrone him. So we practice patricide too. Not that I approve; I have not spoken to Cronus in centuries.”

“Centuries? But you look my age.”

“Gods don't age the way mortals do, dear. We appear the way we choose to appear.”

“I--see,” Doris said, amazed.

“Not that we don't have our problems. That is where you come in.”

“I would much prefer to stay out,” Doris said. “You gods evidently play your games with a hard ball.” Or balls, she thought, remembering the bit about castration.

The goddess smiled as if picking up the gruesome pun. “We do. But you have little choice, now that you have been summoned; Nereus will not let you escape unplumbed. We must merely minimize the damage.”

Doris felt a cold chill despite the warmth of the boudoir. “Damage?”

“His lust is not gentle. I as a goddess can handle it, but you are mortal. You are in for quite a stretching.”

Doris shuddered, not wanting even to imagine it. “He's your husband. Surely you don't want me in his bed. Can't you sneak me out of here so we can avoid this whole awful scene?”

“I could, dear, but he would only sing you back to him. You will have to go through with it.”

Doris knew she was grasping at straws. “His family—they can't approve of his being unfaithful to you. Maybe if we plead with them.”

The goddess shook her head. “I gave you my lineage. Now let me mention his, so you can appreciate why that is not feasible. Nereus' parents are Pontus, a god of the sea, and Gaea, goddess of earth.”

“Gaea! But isn't she in your own lineage?”

“Yes, she is my grandmother. But also Nereus' mother and grandmother, by the god of the sky Aether, who is the son of Chaos, the origin of everything.” The goddess smiled. “She gets around.”

“Doesn't that make you Nereus' cousin?”

“Or closer, yes. So you see, I can't try to deny Nereus without annoying Gaea, which would not be wise. She is a senior goddess, capable of seducing any male she chooses, god or mortal, and we lesser goddesses find it expedient to step quietly around her.”

Doris found the godly genealogy dizzying, but saw the point: she was stuck for it. So she changed the subject. “You said that our names—that's not a coincidence.”

“True, and I think that now you will be able to appreciate the relevance. When I was young and virginal, my uncle Cronos, the same one who usurped the throne of his father, made a play for me. He was not subtle about it.”

“He hit on his niece?”

“Gods lust after any skirt they discover, especially young sightly ones. Naturally I rejected him, and threatened to bite off his member if it came within range of me. That annoyed him, and he cursed me to bear only girls. I think it was in his mind that this might provide him more virginal females to seduce, in due course. I could not nullify the curse, and indeed, I have born Nereus fifty girls. He is beginning to catch on. Fearing that he would leave me, I went to my aunt Rhea.”


“She is another titan, eldest of them all, the sister and wife of Cronos, mother of Zeus and a spate of other gods. She may not be as powerful as Gaea, but she is nevertheless formidable.” The goddess smiled briefly. “She was not entirely pleased to learn of her husband's attempted infidelity with me.”

Doris grimly echoed her smile. “I believe I understand her view.”

“Rhea could not undo the curse on me, or confront Cronus directly, but she helped me in another manner: she laid a geis on Nereus.”

“A what?”

“A geis.” She pronounced it gaysh. “In mortal terms it is an obligation of honor, such as a knight refusing to flee before a threat no matter how dire. In immortal terms it becomes magical. The geis prevents Nereus from taking the virginity of anyone but Doris, and of course he would never touch a woman used by someone else. Even male gods do have certain standards. He can no more break that than you can withstand his song.”

A light brightened. “And my name is Doris. I'm a virgin.”

“There was a loophole,” the goddess agreed. “It never occurred to us that there would ever be any Doris but me. But we weren't thinking of the mortal realm. Now the same song that compels me also compels you; it is audible only to virgins named Doris.”

“Virgins? But you said you have borne fifty children.”

The other Doris smiled. “My virginity is automatically restored after each birth. It's a goddess thing.”

Just so. Gods evidently did have different standards. “I'm sorry. If I had known, I would have taken care of that detail and eliminated my eligibility.” Though she had no idea with whom, given her history.

“Naturally you didn't know. But that is only part of it. Nereus very much wants to sire a boy. That is the root of his disenchantment with me. He intends to do that with you.”

“But I don't want to do it with him!” Doris wailed.

The goddess shook her head. “This is an instance wherein you have no choice in the act, only in the manner of its execution.”

“That doesn't seem like much of a loophole.”

“It will do. Once he sires a boy, Nereus' ire at me should abate and we can be friends again.”

“You are not friends with your husband?”

“Not at present.”

“But then why does he keep compelling you to—to--”

“Lust is not friendship, dear. It's a need. He curses me as he inseminates me.”

Doris gazed at her a moment, appalled. “I'm sorry.”

“Do not be concerned. If he becomes too obstreperous I put jalapeno juice in his mug of mead. That causes him to become more polite, for a time.”

Doris almost laughed. Clearly the females in this venue were not helpless. She returned to the business of the moment. “But what of me? He means to rape me!”

“It is not rape, dear. You are eager for it.”

Unfortunately true. “You said it will not be gentle.”

“I will give you an amulet to increase your strength and shield you from the pain. That will make it bearable. The larger challenge will be to birth and raise the boy in your culture without generating attention. If his nature is discovered by your kind, there will be mischief.”

“Mischief? Of what kind?”

“He will be magical, and as a child he will not be knowledgeable enough to conceal it.” The goddess considered briefly. “In fact, I had better provide you with competent assistance: my 50th daughter, Nerine.”


“The last of the nereids. We have not yet found a suitable assignment for her. This should do.”

“If this girl is a sea nymph, how will she be able to help raise a child on land? She will need help herself.”

“She will indeed. You must be patient with her, informing her of the several pitfalls of land dwelling. By the time the boy is birthed, she should be competent.”

“I hope so. But there's something else: how will I be able to hold a job if I have a bas—an illegitimate baby?”

“The amulet will give you favorable fortune. You will manage.”

“Good luck? Like winning the lottery?”

“Yes, if that helps.”

“It may not; big winners become the cynosure of the community. My situation would become known.”

The goddess nodded. “Then it may be best if you do not enter the lottery. Settle for lesser luck, enough to get by on. Nerine should be able to advise you as to its proper use.”

“Nerine,” Doris said dubiously. She had been given more to handle than she felt comfortable with, to put it mildly. “Maybe I should meet her.”

“That seems reasonable.” The goddess snapped her fingers.

A splendidly nude nymph appeared. She had greenish hair to her knees, a lovely sweet face, and a body that would win any beauty contest without trying. “Yes, mother?”

“Go with the mortal woman here, Nerine. Nanny her baby boy until he is of age to make his own way. Then return here.”

“As you wish, mother. Why is this boy important?”

“He is your half brother, Neris. We must not let him founder alone in an unkind realm.” It seemed that not only was Doris to be rudely impregnated, her son was already named. Well, in a dream everything made sense.

Nerine nodded. “Ah. Father found a loophole.”

“Yes. Another virginal Doris. See that Neris grasps his heritage.”

“I shall,” the nymph promised.

“Wait!” Doris protested belatedly. “You can't just go like that into my world.”

Nerine glanced at her. “Why not? I am garbed as you are.”

She was truly innocent of mortal human ways? “Because any man who sees you will try to grab you and—and molest you. You need some clothing, at least. I don't go about naked when I'm home.”

Both goddess and nymph laughed. “That won't be a problem,” Nerine said.

“I assure you it will be a problem! Our men are just as crude and lustful as yours, only less powerful.”

Nerine shook her head. “I will be invisible and inaudible to all but you and the boy. We nereids become apparent to others only when we choose; it requires an effort of will on our part. Do not be concerned.”


“Here is the amulet,” the goddess said. She rose gracefully and presented Doris with a sparkling blue bracelet that appeared in her hand. “Wear it on your left wrist.”

“Thank you.” Doris fitted it onto her wrist, where it fit snugly, looking entirely ordinary.

“Now it is time for your tryst with Nereus. He is growing impatient.”

“Uh, yes.” There was a renewed tug at her groin. The dream would have its denouement, regardless of her preference. “But where--?”

“This way,” Nerine said, stepping toward a door that appeared before her.

“Wait!” Doris repeated. “You're his daughter. You can't watch him have sex.”

“I can't?” the nymph asked, genuinely perplexed.

“You forget we are gods,” the goddess said. “Not only do children know of the indulgences of their parents, they often participate. Not that I have allowed it with my children. Also, Nerine is older than she may appear to you.”

“How old are you?” Doris asked.

“I lost count after a thousand years.”

Oh, again. “Still--”

“Humor her,” the goddess said to the nereid. “She's mortal.”

“Of course.” Nerine reached out and took Doris's right wrist. Then she shimmered and became a blob of flesh that shrank and coalesced around that wrist. She was now another bracelet, a sparkling green one.

Doris gazed uncertainly at both bracelets. They seemed to be a matched set, but would they really help her get through the threatening ordeal? It was past time for this dream to end.

Now pass through the portal. It was Nerine's voice sounding in her mind, evidently from the green bracelet.

“Uh, yes.” Doris stepped toward it.

“Good luck,” the goddess called after her. She hoped the wish was sincere, considering that it was her husband Doris was going to.

It is, Nerine's thought came. She knows you mean no harm.

Then she was through, entering a hallway. Suddenly the song with its terrible urgency was back full force. Indeed, it would not be rape, technically; she had to have this relief, and soon, even if it was strongly akin to a need to vomit out poison.

An amusing analogy.

“Thank you.” She strode forward, almost running, goosed by her groin.

The hall led to another bedroom suite. She pushed open the door and entered.

There was Nereus, a solid man, standing naked with a huge erection. Too huge; that monster would never fit inside her. She desperately desired the culmination, but this was dangerous.

Do not be concerned; he will make it fit. Think of it as like riding an enormous eel.

He would make it fit. That was not unduly reassuring. And what was this about riding an eel? Were they substitutes for horses, down under the sea? But the song compelled her forward, into his bearlike embrace. There was no courtship, no sweet words, nor did she want them; she wanted this done with as rapidly as possible, for more than one reason. But how was that outsized member ever going to get inside without splitting her asunder? There simply was not room.

He clasped her and threw her to the bed. No kissing, no subtlety at all. His giant member probed her groin, seeking entrance. She closed her eyes in a vain effort to shut this awful thing out. Her feelings were excruciatingly mixed; she wanted it in, but comfortably. If only it would shrink to manageable size!

Ride the eel.

What? Oh, yes, Nerine had said to think of an eel. Well, what choice did she have? Her groin was eager for engagement, but she feared she would be wrenched apart into two halves by the wedging of that imperative member. She imagined a giant eel, a sea creature to be ridden. She mounted it, clamping her knees on its sides authoritatively. “Go, eel!” she said sub-vocally. “Give me a ride out of here!”

Then she was indeed riding the eel. It was vaguely like a bicycle, with the seat at her groin, supporting her, stabilizing her body. It bucked and shot forward, carrying her through the living sea, past startled swimming fish, on into the encompassing darkness. What a glorious ride!

Then she realized that the monster did not have to get inside; all it needed to do was press at the entry, sealing the connection, and discharge its load into the hole. Like connecting a hose to a tap and turning it on.

Only the thing was pushing inside, not outside, forcing her aperture wide open, distending her small channel impossibly. Pain flared.

Invoke the amulet.

Oh, yes. “Do it!” she muttered to the blue bracelet.

It worked; the pain faded back, becoming merely a distant foundation being rammed by a pylon. A pylon being driven several feet down into the rock with each sledgehammer-like thrust. What a penetration!

Meanwhile she still rode the eel, sliding through the deep sea, past sponges, seaweed, giant squid, sharks, and curious smaller fish. She glanced down and saw that she was impaled on the creature; its massive snout had disappeared several feet into her cleft, and she had become a figurehead, or maybe a hand puppet, a human figure on a stalk. Her body hadn't split apart; it had somehow stretched to accommodate it. The worst was over.

Then the thing bucked and spewed its copious ejaculate. A fire hydrant flow pressured into her, blowing her up like a water balloon. Yet it also brought her orgasm, an intense pleasure that suffused her whole being. Relief at last! The song was gone from her mind, the compulsion from her groin.

But it was not over. Her belly distended, and still it came, inflating her impossibly, stretching her flesh, sinews and bones to accommodate it, rendering her into a globe with relatively tiny arms, legs, and head projecting from its surface.

“This better be a damn dream!” she muttered.

To a degree.

A degree? It was way past time to wake up.

Then she popped off the eel and floated up through the sea. But her swollen body did not jet the liquid back out; her aperture had sealed, like a tied-off balloon, and she remained bulbous.

She bobbled to the surface and floated there, a ball amidst the waves. There was the beach, not far distant, illuminated by the lamps of the street behind. She stretched forth her arms and legs and swam toward it, glad that they remained in working order.

By the time she reached shallow water, her body was back to normal. The water balloon had released its fluid as she swam. She got to her feet and waded out to the sand. There was the beach chair with her clothing safely beneath it. She quickly dressed.

Doris stood and gazed back at the surging sea. She must have gone for a swim, and been taken by the dream, and now it was done. There were no such things as gods and goddesses, form-changing nereids, giant copulative eels, pylon-driving sex, or balloon-inflating ejaculations. It had all been her naughty imagination, indulging in an exploit her rational mind would never have tolerated. She was supremely glad that it was over.

It has only begun.

Doris froze. Then she looked at her wrists. There was the blue bracelet on her left, and the green one on her right. Oh, no!

Now we must go to your home. I have much to learn about your culture.

So it was real, at least in part. Maybe the sex had been ludicrously exaggerated, but she had encountered the sea goddess with her name. And made the acquaintance of the nereid Nerine.

The sex was not as extreme as it seemed. The charm facilitated your accommodation, and in due course abated the distention.

That too had been real? Magic indeed! But what about the worst? “Am I then pregnant?”

Yes. My little brother is in place.

She would birth the sea god's baby. That had been the point of her summoning and evoked urgency. Her unsought adventure had indeed just begun.

Yet, considered as a whole, she did not regret it. Her dull life had been dramatically transformed. She was even coming to like the notion of having a magical son. Assuming she could somehow manage the complications of being a single mother who would lose her job the moment her pregnancy became apparent.

Books by Piers Anthony


Doris hears a compelling song, the reverse of a siren song because it summons women. Nereus, god of the sea, desires her so he can sire a son after having 50 daughters, and she must go to him; her groin is burning. The result is Neris (siren spelled backward), her half human, half god son, with magical powers. He grows up guided by his shapely half sister Nerine, who is a neried, a minor goddess, nude but invisible to others unless she chooses to be seen. Neris will grow up to fight the pollution of the sea that is poisoning the sea gods, in part by using his attraction for women to defeat a deadly real siren whose help he needs. He encounters things like Ouroborus, the serpent that circles the world, biting its own tail, holding the globe together, and who likes to watch movies featuring serpents. This is wild, sexy fantasy with an environmental theme.

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Dane at 18 is a rich young man, the likely heir of a highly successful company CEO. He is abducted and held for ransom by Clare, 25, a lovely former prostitute. Bored in a hot cabin without electricity they strip for comfort. One thing leads to another, and they discover that they both have a similar secret sexual problem. They can get it on to climax, but only with each other; this is an intensely sexual relationship. He quickly falls for her; then she falls for him. When he is rescued, he progresses from being her captive to her captor. Then the real story begins. He gives his folks an ultimatum: get Clare free and let him marry her, or he will never get into the family business. So instead of paying ransom, they must welcome Clare into the family. Dane's dad is not a man to cross, but when he faces off with Clare the two discover mutual respect and he wins her loyalty. Just as Clare shares a sexual secret with Dane, she shares a power of personality with Dane's father.

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Pira, short for Piranha, is the most dangerous girl in the world. She is phenomenally coordinated and has been trained to use crossed lasers that can incinerate objects at up to 100 feet, or instantly maim or kill people. When there are dangerous hostage situations, she is on call to handle them, and she can do it, efficiently. She must travel with a guardian, Orion, on whom she has a persistent crush. He's a nice guy and no slouch, a skilled martial artist with a black belt in judo, but really the junior partner here. How can he handle a girl with a devastating weapon who is not at all shy about her desire to get him into bed naked? Even her mother is sure he will succumb. He tries to hold out, but is slowly falling in love with her. Meanwhile the work is challenging as Orion has to advise Pira when and how to use her deadly power without revealing it to the world, and see that she completes her school education.

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Militia, a beautiful female criminal, targeting prominent men. But when she goes after Newton Oswald she is a fly entering the spider’s lair. For Oswald is himself a criminal, of a more serious nature than she. He and his former victim Maria see Militia coming, as it were.

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Juliet sees a car crash and hurries to help a severely injured man. All she can do is call 911 and try to keep him alert until the medics arrive, lest he go into shock and die. Desperate, she puts his hand on her breast, hoping to distract him from the awful pain. This works--but now he’s in love with her. Before it’s done, God Himself intervenes.

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