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The Dragon and the Palm Tree

Author(s): M. Raiya

 A dragon shifter's worst nightmare is an airplane flight in human form, with every self-preservation instinct in them screaming to shift. Varian knows this fear must be overcome sometime if dragons want to keep blending in with humans. But he doesn't know that the day he faces his nightmare will also be the day his lover Josh decides to come out as a woman. A trip to Florida becomes both a journey into the air and deep into themselves, for both of them.

Excerpt


 Josh handed me a paper cup of water. "We have tickets for a nonstop flight to Florida tomorrow morning," he said steadily. "You and me, and Justin and Wells. Huntington is going to stay here with Jenny, along with Lindsay and Sam."

I drained the water. If Huntington wasn't there, he couldn't use his power to control our fear if we couldn't handle it. At least, he might not be able to respond quickly enough. So they really thought Justin and I could handle this on our own?

"I know you've been having a rough semester," Josh went on calmly. "I know you need a break. But if we drag this out, you'll worry yourself into a panic about it. There's nothing you have to do to prepare. You already have the strength inside you to endure it. I suspect you'll be so calm that you'll get that whole stack of essays in your pack graded before we land."

"Only if I give them all A's," I moaned, looking up at him.

Josh laughed. He pulled me to my feet and into an embrace. "Perfect. Everyone will be happy, and you'll be fine."

"Josh. If I'm in the air, my instinct is going to be to shift form. And when I shift in a space that's too small for my dragon body, everything in my way gets blasted apart. I know that -- I've done it. Do you not get that if either Justin or I shift inside an airplane, we're going to destroy it? And a whole bunch of people, maybe even us, are going to get killed?"

He smiled and pressed close. "Which is why I know you and Justin won't shift. And once you two have proven to the rest of the clan that dragons can fly, then they'll know they have that option, too. And someday, if you really need to get someplace fast, you'll know that you can. Trust me."

The fact that I trusted him implicitly was the only reason I was even thinking about doing this. I just hoped this wouldn't be the first time his knack for predicting the future was wrong.

"And," Josh said, pressing closer still, "you would not believe the bathing suit that the UPS guy delivered here today. Trust me, Varian, there's nothing you will not do to see me sitting beneath a palm tree in it."

I managed a weak laugh. "Well, it better come off easier that this damn robe of yours."

"It will melt like butter beneath your fingertips," he said, dropping his voice to a whisper silkier than the turquoise robe. "And, once we get Jenny settled, I have something very special planned for tonight." He pressed even closer, voice dropping lower. "I know you won't sleep anyway, so believe me, you won't even get a chance to try."

 Josh handed me a paper cup of water. "We have tickets for a nonstop flight to Florida tomorrow morning," he said steadily. "You and me, and Justin and Wells. Huntington is going to stay here with Jenny, along with Lindsay and Sam."

I drained the water. If Huntington wasn't there, he couldn't use his power to control our fear if we couldn't handle it. At least, he might not be able to respond quickly enough. So they really thought Justin and I could handle this on our own?

"I know you've been having a rough semester," Josh went on calmly. "I know you need a break. But if we drag this out, you'll worry yourself into a panic about it. There's nothing you have to do to prepare. You already have the strength inside you to endure it. I suspect you'll be so calm that you'll get that whole stack of essays in your pack graded before we land."

"Only if I give them all A's," I moaned, looking up at him.

Josh laughed. He pulled me to my feet and into an embrace. "Perfect. Everyone will be happy, and you'll be fine."

"Josh. If I'm in the air, my instinct is going to be to shift form. And when I shift in a space that's too small for my dragon body, everything in my way gets blasted apart. I know that -- I've done it. Do you not get that if either Justin or I shift inside an airplane, we're going to destroy it? And a whole bunch of people, maybe even us, are going to get killed?"

He smiled and pressed close. "Which is why I know you and Justin won't shift. And once you two have proven to the rest of the clan that dragons can fly, then they'll know they have that option, too. And someday, if you really need to get someplace fast, you'll know that you can. Trust me."

The fact that I trusted him implicitly was the only reason I was even thinking about doing this. I just hoped this wouldn't be the first time his knack for predicting the future was wrong.

"And," Josh said, pressing closer still, "you would not believe the bathing suit that the UPS guy delivered here today. Trust me, Varian, there's nothing you will not do to see me sitting beneath a palm tree in it."

I managed a weak laugh. "Well, it better come off easier that this damn robe of yours."

"It will melt like butter beneath your fingertips," he said, dropping his voice to a whisper silkier than the turquoise robe. "And, once we get Jenny settled, I have something very special planned for tonight." He pressed even closer, voice dropping lower. "I know you won't sleep anyway, so believe me, you won't even get a chance to try."


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ISBN (Print):
ISBN (Electronic): 978-1-61040-756-4
Genre: GLBT
Date Published: 05/28/2014
Publisher: Torquere Press

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