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(adults only)

by Ruth D. Kerce

Sheridin Jacoby admired the house on the hill as she ascended the stone steps. When she reached the top she’d have a spectacular view of the lake. Her friend, Josh, had asked her to bird-sit while his team conducted another animal rescue, and she’d readily agreed. She needed to get away.

After a dozen more steps, she finally stood at the front door. The winter air blew her hair about her face and she felt grateful for the heavy coat she’d worn. Another storm was moving in. More snow.

She unlocked the door and stepped inside. Though the lights were on, she knew Josh had already left for the airport. She had just split from the man she’d been seeing for two years and needed a change of scenery. This place would be perfect. Other than the snowy owls, no one else should be here. She looked forward to the alone time.

Josh had told her to take her pick of bedrooms. She knew the layout of the house, having been here before. Because animals came and went, Josh hadn’t indulged in expensive furniture, but everything from the overstuffed couch to the rocker-recliners shouted comfort.

When she entered the living room she saw the tall cage in front of the sliding glass doors. The lake loomed large below, creating a breathtaking winter view.

Inside the cage, on a long branch, sat three snowy owls, side by side. She hadn’t expected them to be so large. Or so impressive. Their mostly white feathers looked soft and fluffy, a stark contrast to their dangerous-looking claws.

She shrugged off her coat and laid it across a chair, then neared the cage. An envelope hung next to the closed and latched opening. Her name was scrawled on the outside. “I guess this is for me.” She opened the envelope, figuring additional instructions were inside. She didn’t know anything about birds, but as long as she kept them fed and watered, they should be fine.

Josh had told her they were part of a special breeding experiment. She didn’t know a lot about what he did, other than his rescue team was funded by some top secret government agency. He always skirted her questions for more details.

She slid out the paper inside. “Let’s see. Oh. Names. How cute. It says the one with the scar above the right eye is Mason. The one with a mixture of white and darker feathers is Maze. And the one with --” She barked out a laugh. “The one with the big cock is Mast.” She peeked underneath him but couldn’t see anything resembling a cock. Josh was playing with her. “Mason, Maze, Mast. Alliteration lives.”

A breeding experiment? With three males? She stared at the owls and they stared back. Their black eyes unnerved her somehow. Silly. They’re just birds.

Their water dishes looked full. The paper instructed her where to find their specialized food. “Sounds easy enough.”

She set the paper on the coffee table and retrieved her bag. She headed down the hall, knowing she should take one of the smaller bedrooms, but she couldn’t resist the master with its massive bed and decadent feel. All dark browns and emerald greens. Very masculine and very sexy.

She carried her bag into the bathroom to set out some toiletries. As she unzipped the suitcase, a clanging drew her attention. She heard flapping and a strange trill. What were they doing? She’d better check to make sure the owls were all right.

When she stepped from the bathroom, her heart leapt and she froze. On the far side of the bed stood a large man, well over six foot. His black hair hung to his shoulders and his black eyes bored into her. He stood completely naked and not an inch of him was without muscle. His cock drew her eyes, which was as massive as the rest of him, even though it hung flaccid.

She couldn’t think. Her heart and mind raced too fast. She should be screaming. But one thing stopped her -- the large, white wings that spread out from his back. Fear and disbelief, but also curiosity, gripped her.

Still… Figuring it best to flee now and question her sanity later, she managed to engage her feet. She eased to the side, toward her only escape route, but stopped flat.

Two men stood in the doorway, blocking her exit. One with oddly-colored black and white hair that disappeared down his back, the other with a scar over his right eye. Both also naked. All three men looked at her with interest, but said nothing. She said nothing.

Then it hit her. Josh’s note. The one with the scar over his right eye. Mason. The one with black and white feathers. Maze. The one with the huge cock. Mast. Her gaze shot back to the man beside the bed. Impossible.

“Sheridin…” Mast rumbled, and his wings twitched.

His deep voice sent an unexpected sexual thrill down her spine. “How -- how do you know my name? Who are you? What are you?” Three naked, hunky men. At least one with wings. This was either very, very bad or very, very good.

~~ Entire short story is available here.



Shapeshifters are real!

by Ruth D. Kerce

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erotic romance

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From Gerald:

"My girlfriend of three years just left me. We are both 28 and considered marriage. She felt I was controlling. She said she wasn’t interested in someone else, just needed time to herself, without contact, to see if I could change enough and we could be together.

I have three questions.

First, while she decides, what can I do to take my mind off her? Second, is there anything I can do to convince her I’m the one for her? Third, how long is a fair time to wait before I consider dating again?"

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"Gerald, questions one and two are opposites. You can’t take your mind off her while convincing her you are her one. So let’s skip to the third question.

You can’t write a short email without mentioning dating other women. That’s like saying, “I love my job, but when should I start sending out resumes to other employers?”

In her mind you are controlling. You didn’t ask how to stop being controlling. You asked how to control the situation. You’ve answered your own letter.

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