Jayne Ann Krentz
"So, how do I compare to one of your heroes?"
Gideon had asked the question teasingly, but the way his hands roamed over her body left no doubt in Sarah's mind about what was to come next.
"You're stronger," Sarah murmured, kissing the tip of his nose. "Bigger." She kissed the hard line of his jaw. "Sexier." She kissed his mouth. "Much sexier…"
"Is that all?" Gideon was nuzzling her neck.
She leaned back against the couch, as if to postpone the inevitable moment of their union. "Well, the reality is much better than the fantasy version."
"And you're convinced I'm real?"
"I know the effect you have on me." She felt Gideon's hand tangle in her hair, forcing her to look straight into his eyes. Suddenly his mood had changed into one of stormy passion.
"I'm no hero," he warned, dragging Sarah on top of him.
"Yes, you are," she whispered passionately as waves of anticipation rolled through her. "You're the perfect hero…"
At the heart of every powerful romance story lies a legend. There are many romantic legends and countless modern variations on them, but they all share one thing: they are tales of brave, resourceful women who must gentle and tame the powerful, passionate men who are their true mates.
Those of us who love romance novels, readers and writers alike, understand that it is because women are willing to accept the difficult challenge of bonding with men that civilization itself continues. That, of course, explains the basic appeal of our legends.
In the Ladies and Legends trilogy, I have written three tales that are modern-day versions of three classic romantic myths. I have created
The Pirate, The Adventurer
, all with heroes of mythic proportion, tamed by women who understand romance.
Jayne Ann Krentz
Published April 1990
Copyright © 1990 by Jayne Ann Krentz.
All rights reserved. Except for use in any review, the reproduction or utilization of this work in whole or in part in any form by any electronic, mechanical or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including xerography, photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, is forbidden without the permission of the publisher, Harlequin Enterprises Limited, 225 Duncan Mill Road, Don Mills, Ontario, Canada M3B 3K9.
All the characters in this book have no existence outside the imagination of the author and have no relation whatsoever to anyone bearing the same name or names. They are not even distantly inspired by any individual known or unknown to the author, and all incidents are pure invention.
Printed in U.S.A.
"D OES IT OCCUR to you that you might have become a little obsessed with this matter of the Flowers, Sarah?"
"Kate has a point, Sarah. During the past few months, you've talked about nothing else except the Fleetwood Flowers and that man Gideon Trace. Trace may be real enough, but I'm sure the Flowers are just an old legend. There are probably thousands of tales just like it and none of them has much basis in truth. Why get excited about this one?"
Standing at the window of her bright, cheerfully cluttered apartment, Sarah Fleetwood gazed at the street ten stories below and smiled to herself. "Because this legend is mine," she said enigmatically.
"You mean, because the woman who once owned the Flowers is a distant ancestress of yours?" Margaret Lark shook her sleek head. "That's no reason to think there's any more truth in this tale than there is in any other lost treasure story."
"If you ask me," Katherine Inskip Hawthorne said with a knowing wink, "it's not the tale of the Fleetwood Flowers that has you enthralled, Sarah, it's this man, Gideon Trace, the one you've been corresponding with lately, who really interests you."
Sarah felt the familiar little glow of excitement that always accompanied the sound of Gideon's name.
. She had never met the man but already she knew a great deal about him. After four months of exchanging letters with him she was quite certain he was the real-life version of one of her own heroes, a man straight out of one of her novels of romantic suspense. Dark, enigmatic, mysterious and rather dangerous—the Beast waiting in a haunted garden for Beauty to rescue him from some curse.
Sarah knew she was no great beauty but she figured she could handle whatever curse had been put on Gideon
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