Beatrix Warder has spent her adult life avoiding this precise moment. In a flurry of panic, she made a choice and it landed her neck deep in the ocean, facing her worst nightmare. Hector was very good looking, for a merman, but he was also her husband and she had now come to him. When they had wed, she had been young and he had been willing to wait until she made the effort to join him under the sea. Bea isn't happy with the end of her dry land life, but with a little bit of effort, Hector is willing to show her there is more to the wet world than fins and a tail.
Her captor forced air into her lungs and when she stopped fighting him, held her nose closed to keep her from losing all that he gave her.
It was definitely a him. She could tell by the press of a masculine chest against her. If it was the man she had called for, she had no idea. The depths of the water kept her from seeing much of anything.
They were moving. The grip of the water changed, the temperature surrounding her changed. She blinked in discomfort as he slowed to breathe for her every minute or so. It wasn't comfortable, but it was keeping her alive.
Light was starting to flare and jump around them, a few curious faces flowed past her vision, then they were gone and Beatrix and her rescuer were entering a wet pool. He flipped her out of the water and onto her belly, letting her breathe her fill.
"You know, under all the circumstances that I imagined would bring you to me, demon attack was not one of them."
She groaned and hid her head. Yup. It was him. "Thank you for the rescue, Hector."
"It's the least I could do for my wife. It would be a horrible way for us to start our lives together if you drowned." His sense of humour was not for the faint of heart.
Bea refused to look at him until he had shifted and wrapped a sarong around his hips. "You are such a prude, Beatrix."
"I am covered and you are wearing far too many clothes."
Reluctantly, she pushed herself up onto her knees and then stood. Her jeans were sopping, her sneakers squished and her top was gaping around the neck, exposing her bra. She had lost her jacket in the fight for buoyancy. Her medium brown hair was halfway down her back, a concession to the likelihood of her spending her life under the waves. The mer folk didn't wear much clothing, so long hair served a purpose beyond femininity. It was a built-in top.
Normally if a guy like Hector had come up to her, all rippling muscle and slick skin, telling her that she was wearing too many clothes, she would have felt her heart beat faster. With him, it skipped a beat.
"Come along. I have your room prepared."
Your room. Not ours. Relief ran through her faster than it should have. She wanted him and was terrified all at the same time. With him, it would not be just sex, with him it was for forever.