Title: Infinite Blue
Author: Natalina Reis
Genre: MM Paranormal Romance
When a shifter and a human are bound by fate, neither man knows if their connection will be enough to save not only their growing love, but their lives. Shahin Halcón has been taught that if and when he meets his soul mate, he’ll know immediately. Always the rebel, he doesn’t believe it until the day he crosses paths with Cai, a full-human. Plagued by unsuccessful relationships and heartache, Cai Banes’s life is quiet and unexciting. When he meets young and wild Shahin, his life is turned upside down, and he's not sure he likes it. But neither can deny the powerful pull that draws them together. Old secrets and ancient myths about cross-species relationships plague their romance and threaten to put their happiness and life at risk. Will their love for each other be strong enough to survive?
Lyra had that expression that he always equated to the Cheshire cat’s. Cai sneaked a look at her from the corner of his eye, not wanting to invite what he could guess would be a tirade about his dating life. The subterfuge didn’t work. Her feline grin expanded to alarming widths. He could almost hear the words gurgling up her throat, ready to explode out of her mouth.
“I’m not dating him.” He wasn’t. Shahin was an interest, a friend—one he would admittedly love to rip the clothes oﬀ and get to know up close and personal, but they were not dating. Not yet. Maybe never. “I’m not. Don’t look at me like that, sis.”
His sister covered the space between them with a graceful leap and wrapped her arms around his neck. “I’m so happy for you, Cai. It’s about time you have someone in your life again.”
Despite his annoyance, Cai laughed at his sister’s excitement. You would think he had just won the Nobel Prize. “Will you stop being so weird about this? We had coﬀee, that’s all.”
“Coﬀee is a gateway drug for romance.” Still hanging from his neck, Lyra opened her saucer-like eyes like two beacons of light. “Is he cute?” A tiny smile crept to his lips and she squealed. “He’s hot, right? Smoking hot?”
Cai unwrapped her arms from around his neck and pushed her away gently. “He’s handsome, yes.” His voice went down to a whisper. “And young.”
“You dog! You’re dating a younger guy? How young is he? Twenty?”
“Jesus, Lyra. He’s probably in his midtwenties. I’m just guessing. Just younger than me.” Now free from his sister’s arms, Cai sat by the high kitchen counter and picked a donut from the brown box his sister had brought with her. They were still warm and gooey perfection.
Lyra came around to the other side of the counter and snatched the donut from his hand. “You know that’s my favorite ﬂavor, bro.” Before he could protest, she took a giant bite out of it and laughed at him, her chipmunk cheeks swollen with the pastry. “It’s not like you’re old, Cai. You’re only thirty-ﬁve. Hardly a silver fox.”
After a perfunctory look-over, Cai decided for the plain yeast donut. “He looks like a kid, snake bite and all.”
Lyra choked on the donut, coughing out bits and pieces into her napkin. “Wait! What? He wears a snake bite?” He could almost hear her thoughts. That is so unlike the type you normally go for, bro. She meant the boring, fastidious older men he always seemed to attract. “Wow, I don’t know whether to be impressed or worried. That’s a serious shift in preferences, Cai. Are you going through a midlife crisis already?”
Cai stopped midway through bringing the donut to his mouth and stared at her, eyebrows raised high. “What are you talking about?”
“You know, some guys buy a sports car, others date hip younger guys….” She said it with a devilish smile on her lips, knowing all too well it would not only rattle him just so, but also make him second-guess himself. “Come on! You know I’m joking, right? I’m just surprised. Until now your boyfriends have been the sensible kind. Shahin does not sound at all like that.”
He chewed on the donut pensively. “I guess not,” he said after swallowing the pastry. “He seems impulsive and a bit on the wild side.” He fell silent again, his eyes focused on nothing in particular. “But there is something between us.” It was a whisper, a thought.
Lyra was not smiling anymore, her eyes trained on her brother’s always serious face. “What kind of thing?”
He raised his eyes to hers, almost surprised she was still there. “I don’t know. I can’t explain it. A pull—strong and insistent. Never felt anything like it. It’s bit intimidating.”
His sister placed a hand on his shoulder and squeezed lightly. “For once don’t think so much and just follow your heart.”
His past relationships hadn’t been a great success. Ted had been his ﬁrst boyfriend when they were both seniors in high school. Even then his jet-black hair was already turning silver, something that made him an outcast of sorts. Or maybe it was his introverted personality that kept him apart from the other young people. Ted had been the president of the art club and had taken a shine to the young, quiet, artistic man he was back then. They dated for a few months until they parted ways to go to college. Their friendship had remained intact through the years and when the chance presented itself to work together, it had seemed the natural thing to do. Every relationship Cai had had since then had ended in a nondramatic way, the two of them choosing to go their own way. Until Jack.
“And don’t even think about your idiot ex.” Sometimes Cai thought his sister could read his mind. “He was a sexually confused moron who couldn’t tell a good thing if it bit him in the ass. You deserve so much better than he could ever be.” Then why did he feel like a loser?
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There is a certain magic about the holiday season. Every time I think about it, I hear the sound of serenity, the scent of home, and that amazing feeling of new hope. Which in my case translates into Christmas music, feel-good Hallmark movies, and time with my family by the tree.
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Natalina wrote her first romance at the age of thirteen. Since then she has published ten romances that defy the boundaries of her genre. She enjoys writing all kinds of rebels and outcasts into her stories and she always roots for the underdog.
Natalina doesn’t believe you can have too many books or too much coffee. Art and dance make her happy and she is pretty sure she could survive on lobster and bananas alone. When she is not writing or stressing over lesson plans, she shares her life with her husband and two adult sons.
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