Author Charlie Richards

Giving love and imagination free reign


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Surfing with a Seahorse

Beneath Aquatica's Waves: Book Six

World of Aquatica: When a seahorse shifter discovers his mate in a big handsome human, he must extricate him from his small controlling boyfriend.

Colton Martinez is a seahorse shifter and lives a comfortable life at World of Aquatica, a shifter owned and operated marine park. When a number of others find their Fate-given mates, he doesn’t give finding his own much thought—until he scents the most alluring aroma in a big, handsome human named Waylon Davison. Discovering his mate has a boyfriend doesn’t deter Colton. Instead, he lifts Waylon’s wallet and, with the help of friends, plans his strategy for wooing the man. After learning his human is disturbingly cowed by his boyfriend, Colton realizes Waylon has more to overcome than the shock of discovering that shifters exist. Even if Colton can convince Waylon to dump his jerk of a boyfriend, can he convince his human that entering a pairing with a man chosen by Fate isn’t a new prison?

Excerpt - Surfing with a Seahorse

The excerpt below contain explicit adult language and sexual content.

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    When Colton arrived at the restaurant, he greeted Thane, who stood behind the podium. The man was usually a waiter, so he had to ask, “What are you doing up here?”

    “Natalie wasn’t feeling well, so she asked me to cover her shift,” Thane replied, a bright smile on the blond’s face. Colton noticed it didn’t quite meet his green eyes as it usually did, betraying his concern as easily as his scent did.

    Colton patted Thane on the shoulder. “I hope it’s nothing serious.”

    “Me, too,” Thane replied. “I’m gonna take some soup to her after this shift to check on her.” He quickly shifted gears, asking, “Table for one? Or are we expecting others?”

    “Just me,” Colton told him, patting his belly. “Need a quick lunch before heading to the shop.”

    Thane nodded as he grabbed a menu, then led the way through the restaurant. Placing the menu on a small table with two chairs, he offered, “Kayne will be here in a moment.”

    “Thanks, Thane.” Colton knew the man referenced his brother, who also worked as a server there, and picked up the menu, even though he already knew what he wanted. “Wonder what the pie is today.”

    “Hey, Colton,” Kayne greeted a moment later, arriving with a glass of water and a grin. “Want anything besides the water to drink? Want to hear the specials?”

    Colton immediately picked up the water as he replied, “No need, and the water’s good. Want the steamer clams. But what pie is available?” Then he drank half the glass.

    Kayne nodded as he jotted the request on his order pad. At the same time, he told him, “There’s peach pie, lemon meringue, or apple cobbler.”

    Humming appreciatively, Colton stated, “The cobbler.” He grinned widely. “You know me so well.”

    Laughing, Kayne headed back toward the kitchen, pausing at various tables along the way.

    Colton pulled out his phone and opened his reading app. Just as he began a technical journal, an interesting scent wafted over his nostrils. He lifted his head and inhaled deeply as he glanced around.

    A large, black-skinned male strode past his table, and for just an instant, their eyes met. His deep-gray eyes widened as he perused Colton’s body, then he looked away. He swallowed hard as he hurried on his way…taking the mouth-watering scent with him.

    “Oh, fuck me,” Colton whispered, turning and staring at the human’s sexy ass, sadly hidden behind loose board shorts. He still found it a thing of beauty, and the desire to follow and proposition him in the bathroom surged through him.

    Colton almost rose to do just that when he felt his seahorse trill in his mind.

    Mate.

    Freezing, Colton swallowed hard. His mouth went dry. He grabbed his water and took a deep swallow.

    Holy shit. That’s my mate? Damn, Fate knows me so well.

    The human had pinged just about every one of his boxes. He had to have stood at least six-foot-three, maybe an inch more. His shoulders were wide, stretching his t-shirt, and his torso tapered to a trim waist. The muscles of his arms and calves bulged, giving the idea of an active lifestyle.

    Realizing he was just sitting there when his mate was in the room, Colton rose to his feet and strode swiftly toward the hall where the restrooms were tucked. He turned the corner and ran into a wall of muscle. Huge hands gripped his upper arms, keeping him from landing on his ass.

    “Damn, sorry about that, man,” a deep voice laced with concern said. “Didn’t expect ya.” The hands disappeared, and the man took a step backward.

    Yep, definitely six-foot-four. And gods, what a gorgeous deep voice.

    Colton grinned up at the handsome man. “Not a problem. Just wanted to catch up with you.”

    “Me?” The man’s black eyebrows furrowed. “Is something wrong?”

    “What’s going on?” A slender Caucasian human rounded Colton and stopped beside Colton’s mate. He wrapped his arm around the human’s waist possessively. When he lifted an imperious brow and stared brazenly at him, Colton wanted to deck him.

    Well, at least I know he’s openly gay.

    Switching gears, Colton grinned widely. “Sorry, man. Just thought he was someone I know,” he lied, waving at his mate. Although that was actually kinda true…after all, a shifter knew his mate by scent. He shrugged. “I was wrong.” Holding out his hand to the man he hoped to soon steal, Colton offered, “I’m Colton Martinez. Sorry for the confusion.”

    “Waylon Davison,” the huge man replied, taking Colton’s hand. His nostrils flared, and his eyes widened just a little, betraying that he too felt the connection. Still holding Colton’s hand, Waylon used the other to indicate the Caucasian. “This is my boyfriend, Richard Leander.”

    Nodding, Colton managed to release Waylon even though he would much rather have preferred to use the hold to pull his mate away from Richard. “Well, I work here, so if you have any questions, just holler.” He began sidling around Waylon, keeping a smile on his face as he glanced between them, making certain both men’s focus remained on his face. “I’ll be back at my table eating lunch in just a minute.”

    Then, using skills he hadn’t had to utilize in over a decade—since before his time as the marine park’s mechanic—Colton easily lifted Waylon’s wallet.