QSFer Delaney Rain has a new MM paranormal romance out: “The Sea Monster’s Mate.”
Eric Baird made the decision to abandon modern conveniences and his prejudiced family for a simple island life. He has a small cabin and a lagoon all to himself and, though he’s sometimes lonely, he’s mostly relieved that he can finally be free.
But one lazy afternoon swim takes a dangerous turn when a cramp has Eric struggling not to drown. Suddenly, someone saves him, and he’s ever so grateful…until he sees who it is.
Tyfodorus is a Cecaelia who has a rather human upper body and a definitely squid lower half. As if a mersquid in his lagoon isn’t enough to knock the socks off Eric, Ty lets him know they’re here to breed. Would Eric be the host to Ty’s six eggs? Pretty please?
Eric gets to know Ty and agrees, resulting in some amazing sex and six little highly intelligent, totally adorable hatchlings. As they adjust to living as a family in the lagoon, they also have to understand just how genetically compatible they are, deal with a shipwreck survivor, and make plans for their future together.
This 36,000-word/160-page book has a sweet and sexy instalove story with tentacles in naughty places, low angst, some mpreg-ish moments, and a bunch of cute alien babies with an HEA ending.
“I am called Tyfodorus. Do you have a name?”
“I-I’m Eric. Eric Baird.” And he automatically stuck his hand out to shake.
Tyfodorus took it in both of his, sandwiching Eric’s hand between slightly cool and damp flesh that felt a bit like rubber instead of skin.
“Eric, I am here for a very specific purpose, but I wonder if I might adjust that somewhat now that we have met.”
“Oh?” he asked, his voice hitching up high on that one syllable.
“Yes.” He smiled like he was delighted, like everything was going his way, as he tentacle-walked closer and wouldn’t let go of Eric’s hand. “I would like to request your assistance.”
Well, that didn’t sound so bad. “How can I help you?”
“My people are unable to do certain things without aid,” he said as he caressed the back of Eric’s hand. “It is vital to our survival, in fact, that others help us in this way.”
“In what way?” he whispered, but some part of him knew.
Oh, how he knew.
“I am here to breed, Eric, and I would like to do so with you.”
Eric threw himself backward, scrambling up onto his feet and away from Tyfodorus. “Oh hell no! I know how that ends,” he said pointing at the-the-the mersquid staring at him. “I’m not doing that.”
“Another has requested you act as a host?”
“A host? That’s even worse.”
“Worse?” He frowned up at him. “Eric, I am afraid my comprehension or expression of your language is somehow lacking. May I try again?”
“Nope. Don’t bother.” Eric backed up even further. “I’m not letting you torture and kill me. I don’t care if it—”
“I do not want to torture or kill you!” Eyes wide, he covered his open mouth with both hands. Was he shocked? Horrified? He pressed one hand to the base of his throat and the other to his chest. “Eric, I would never do such things. Though I have never bred before, I am fully aware of what is required of us both and will devote myself to your care throughout the entire process.”
Though his heart beat hard and a little voice in his mind was screaming at him to run, Eric stayed there and asked, “What exactly do you need me to do? Exactly.”
Tyfodorus nodded quickly. “I would feed you an elixir that will relax you and provide sustenance to you. Using my…my…a certain organ of mine, I would then insert my eggs into your body through your nether hole.”
“Ah-ah-ah!” Eric savagely pointed at him. “That right there is the problem. You’re going to stuff me full of eggs that’ll hatch and eat me alive from the inside out.”
Tyfodorus gaped at him. “They would not do that. They would do nothing like that at all. When they were ready to hatch, the eggs would secrete a chemical that would encourage you to expel them. Once each egg reached the cooler salt water, it would solidify so that I might crack it open, releasing the hatchling within.”
Eric stared at him for a moment. “And then they’ll eat me?”
“No one will eat you!” he yelled before covering his mouth and sinking a little into the water like someone might’ve heard him. “Pardon me,” he said, and Eric half-expected him to straighten his tie or smooth his hair back—not that he had either. “Eric, the entire process is done with the utmost care and respect for the host.”
“Oh.” He swallowed, trying to… Well, just trying.
“I will admit that I do not know of anyone having a human as a host before.” He spoke quietly and to his fingers as he started fidgeting again. “My memories tell me I should select a large animal, but…” He shook his head and sank a little lower into the water. “I found a pig on another island, but all I could think about was how afraid it would be. It would not understand that I meant it no harm, that I would care for it. It would fight for its life until I subdued it.”
Eric sighed. Okay, it was on him for assuming this real-world situation would be like anything the internet said. Because Tyfodorus was either an Oscar-worthy actor or just completely unable to hurt a…pig. And Eric was leaning toward the latter given the fact the guy looked like he might start crying.
“I guess,” Eric said, “being able to explain everything to your host beforehand is a good thing.”
He looked up at him, big blue eyes shining. “I thought so.”
“I’m sorry. There are, uh—” How to explain the internet? “—legends about sea monsters doing things to people that I, um, shouldn’t have believed without letting you explain.”
Tyfodorus frowned at him. “I am not a sea monster.”
Eric rubbed at his mouth to keep from smiling at that cute, grumpy face. “Right. You’re not. What, um, are you, though?”
“Land dwellers have called us many things, like Octopus People, but we call ourselves Cecaelia.”
That sounded familiar, but Eric couldn’t place why he knew it. “Where do Cecaelia live? Like do you have underwater cities?”
Tyfodorus cocked his head at him. “There are communities throughout the oceans, but our origin on this planet is southwest of here.”
“This planet?” Eric shifted closer. “Are you saying Cecaelia are from another planet?”
“Yes, our origin planet and community are called Pacilona Nepthis.”
Eric sat down cross-legged in the grass. Tyfodorus was an alien mersquid. “And that’s here in the Pacific?”
“The name of this ocean,” he said with a sweeping motion to the water outside the lagoon.
Tyfodorus squinted. “You named the water?”
“Well, not me personally, but someone did. I don’t remember why it’s called the Pacific, but I want to say the Atlantic is named after Atlantis.” Eric sat up straighter and smiled. “Do you know about Atlantis?”
Still frowning slightly, Tyfodorus shook his head. “Is it another…legend?”
Delaney Rain is an emerging author of gay erotic paranormal romances featuring monsters and the men who love them.