Cover Designer: Quirky Bird
When a slave uprising threatens the life of Syreena, the daughter of an eighteenth century plantation owner, a servant uses voodoo to transform her into a mermaid. The spell will be only broken when she returns to the beach where it was cast. After three hundred years of swimming, she’s ready to trade fins for legs. The only problem is she can’t find her way home.
Dylan, a twenty-first century Coast Guard Officer, has sworn off love for the sea. When a wave throws him overboard, Syreena uses her amulet to ward off the sharks and save his life.
With Syreena and Dylan stranded on a remote cay, Dylan has the know-how to build a raft and navigate but his near-drowning has made him terrified of the water. Syrenna will use every charm she has to convince Dylan to take her home.
Even if it means falling in love. . .
It was a small amulet, about the size of a small Manonsillo fruit, painted with the image of Mami Wata, a mermaid-like deity venerated by the slaves. She was carefully painted, from the curls in her ebony hair to the scales of the snake wrapped around her neck.
Guilliame said, “Mami will show you the way.” He held up a leather pouch and threaded onto the thin leather strap that held the amulet. “Do not lose be without these until you are sure you don’t need them.”
“How will I know?”
“There will be no question. You will be safe.” The lyrical sounds of West Africa were heavy in his voice. “Do not be afraid, mademoiselle. Your papa and I are doing this because it is all we can do. When it is time,” Guilliame said, “you must return here, to this very spot. Do you understand?” His eyes were serious. “You must complete the circle.”
“I understand,” she replied in a whisper.
Guilliame stood behind her. He placed the necklace over her head. The leather pouch hung right above her breasts. She touched it with her finger. It felt warm, alive.
“Keep your fingers on it,” Guilliame said. He touched her shoulders, a familiarity unimagined only minutes ago. “Good luck.”
His bass voice was hypnotic, drifting between the patois of the island and the stranger, foreign sounds of West Africa. Her eyelids became heavy; she was falling into a deep sleep.
The sounds of the beach became louder and Guilliame’s voice became more distant.
The last thing she heard was, “She will swim alone until the man who is her true equal comes to her.”
She whirled into a vortex of color, sound and wind. Her body felt lighter and lighter, weightless.
Then there was nothing but blue.
Blaire Edens lives in mountains of North Carolina. She grew up on a farm that’s been in her family since 1790. Of Scottish descent, her most famous ancestor, John Comyn, Lord of Badenoch and Guardian of Scotland, was murdered by Robert the Bruce on the altar of the Greyfriars Church at Dumfries.
She has a degree in Horticulture from Clemson University. She’s held a myriad of jobs including television reporter, GPS map creator, and personal assistant to a fellow who was rich enough to pay someone to pick up the dry cleaning. When she’s not plotting, she’s busy knitting, running, or listening to the Blues.
Blaire loves iced tea with mint, hand-stitched quilts, and yarn stores. She refuses to eat anything that mixes chocolate and peanut butter or apple and cinnamon. She’s generally nice to her mother, tries to remember not to smack her bubble gum, and only speeds when no one’s looking.
She’s the past president of South Carolina Writers Workshop and an active member of Romance Writers of America.