Sean stopped and turned back to watch as Kerry walked back down the beach. After quick consideration, he decided to follow, slipping past the closed umbrella stand and into the inky shadows of the condominiums towering over the shoreline. She had joked about her age, but it was obvious that she was comfortable with it, in spite of her refusal to give him a direct answer. But then, he hadn’t answered her directly, either.
He was, as he had said, older than he looked.
Much older. Kerry intrigued him, something that hadn’t happened in a while. It had been years, in fact, since he’d found anyone who didn’t immediately try to pick him up. Something about her triggered a memory, a hazy thought that prickled the base of his skull. It needed pursuing, that tugging remembrance.
Dolphins. She had honestly been hoping to see dolphins out there in the waves beyond the surf. Her embarrassed admission had been kind of funny, and cute. He hadn’t surfed this stretch of beach in a while. Usually he hung out closer to the inlet. There were more people there, even this late. But he had been looking for a calm evening tonight. Some bodysurfing, maybe a late-night stroll, and a quick and easy hookup with some girl on the prowl. Nothing too exciting. There was a storm coming, one that would rock the shoreline for several days, and he wanted to be free to come out and enjoy it when it happened.
He had found her instead. Kerry’s wistful longing as she looked out over the darkened sea had touched a chord deep inside. It resonated with his own desires, his own love of the vast open water. Sean felt it tug at him. Then he yielded to that sensation, allowing it to draw him along the beach after her. There was a promise there, a hint that she might welcome a companion.
Sean jogged back down to the damp sand just above the incoming tide and ran after Kerry. It took some effort, but he caught up with her about three blocks down. The startled smile she wore made him glad he had followed her.
“So, uh, Kerry… Are you doing anything tonight?” It was probably the lamest pick-up line he’d ever used, but he couldn’t think of anything else.
Kerry looked him up and down, and her smile turned just a little wicked. “No, actually, I’m not. Let me call my daughter, so she doesn’t worry.” She unclipped her cell phone and dialed. There must have been no answer, because she left a concise message and hung up. “So what do you have in mind? Not bodysurfing, I hope.”
Actually, he had considered it, but she didn’t look like she had the stamina. “We could head up to the boardwalk, or just walk here for a while.”
“Why don’t we walk down the other way, toward Delaware? The light haze thins out down there, and the water’s beautiful under the night sky.” A note of sultry desire tinged her voice.
A romantic, then. Well, he could accommodate her.
As Sean stood beside her, he couldn’t see her eye color or her hair color, other than to say they were dark but not black, and faint glints of silver shimmered up from the dark strands. Her skin gleamed white under the moonlight.
He admired the way her large breasts gave way to a curvy waist, which flared out to broad hips. She was full-figured, well-rounded and plump, very much to his taste. And her age suggested experience. Not that he was assuming anything, but her willingness to wander about Ocean City with a total stranger was a promise in itself. If he hadn’t noticed her shrewd observance of him the whole time they had been talking earlier, he would have questioned her sense. But she had looked him up and down in much the same way he had done to her, assessing his potential as a source of danger.
As they meandered down the beach, the haze thinned out just as Kerry had promised, and the night darkened until he had to blink to adjust his vision. The susurration of the sea was a constant rumble to their right, and the hiss and splash of the foam along the beach followed their progress. Eventually, they had walked far enough that almost no light could be seen, and they were completely alone. If either of them had any sinister intentions, there was no one to hear a cry for help.
“I like it down here,” Kerry whispered, taking his hand and surprising him. “The sea calls out constantly, and the crashing waves make my heart pound.” She pressed his palm against the soft flesh of her cleavage, and he could feel the rapid patter beneath his fingers. Her skin was damp with sea spray and perspiration. The beating of her heart made his pulse race.
So the sound of the ocean turns her on.
Sean slid his hand down the soft mound of her breast, caressing the warm swell of it before he drew her against him. He leaned over to kiss her neck. She tasted of the sea and of hot, sensuous need. He shuddered with desire as she leaned into him, pressing her hips to his, tangling her fingers in his damp hair.
His thoughts were fast becoming incoherent, between the thunder of the ocean and the feel of her body against his. The electric surge of the storm hung in the air, adding a sense of urgency to his desire. “Here,” was all he managed, before she kissed him, the heated softness of her tongue invading his mouth.
KERRY COULD TASTE the deep ocean in Sean’s kiss. It inflamed her senses, brought the electrified tingle that haunted her to a fever pitch. He had come from the sea, tasted of the slate-gray water, and now she knew what he was. One of those she looked for on nights like this, to satisfy her secret sexual addiction.
Maybe he was the one she truly looked for, the one who had been first. There had been others, but none as powerful as the one she sought. Sean smelled of salt, not brine, so she knew he came from the deep. He would be hers tonight, and maybe for the rest of her stay here. It wouldn’t last beyond those two weeks, but so many times, it hadn’t even survived one encounter.
Sean’s mouth left hers, and he stared hard into her eyes. She tried to keep her desperate longing from showing, wanting him to see only the physical desire, not the emotional need. She must have been successful, because he closed his eyes as his hands found the hem of her shirt and pulled it over her head.
Her bra was next, and he pulled her close for another tantalizing kiss. His breath caught for a moment as her breasts touched his bare chest, and she could feel his arousal pressing against her. Sean dropped to his knees, pulling her down with him, and she allowed him to lay her down in the damp sand as the surf pooled below their feet.
“Beautiful,” was all Kerry heard before his lips began tracing a searing trail from one breast to the other. He teased her nipples with slow circles of his tongue, sucking and nibbling at them until they stiffened to hard peaks, her areolae taut in anticipation. Her skin began to sing with insistent desire, wanting more. Wanting him
His hands had moved on to her pants, undoing button and zipper with practiced ease. She felt his hesitation, the faintest tremble of his hands when he slid the material past her hips and discovered the lack of any further barriers. He sat back then, looking down at her, and lust blazed in the depths of his widened eyes.
His breath came hard and fast, and Kerry saw the rapid beat of his heart pulsing in the hollow of his throat. She shifted a little on the sand, feeling the cool water of the incoming tide slipping up beneath her legs, and she spread her legs in invitation—to him, and to the frothing sea that inched closer with each incoming wave.
Sean bent down to her again, and the heat and hardness of his lust pressed against her through his swim trunks. She reached to push them down, only to find her hands held in a grip of stone.
“You were waiting for me,” he said, and his voice carried the rush of the deep ocean currents.
“You know what I am.” There was no hesitation in his voice, no fear of discovery. “There have been others before me, then.”
“Not for a long time. There aren’t that many who swim the currents around here.”
He pulled her to a sitting position, and Kerry shivered as the cool sea swept higher between her thighs. It was not going as she’d hoped. The dark night shadowed his face as he continued to stare at her. She knew what he was thinking: had he encountered her before? It was possible; Selkies didn’t always keep the same human shape, so she couldn’t tell if Sean was the one she sought or not. Not yet. And it was dark. Too dark to truly see his eyes.
He let go of her hands and caressed her face, his touch gentle, barely there. Even that faint touch sent a scintillating jolt of electricity through her, and she sighed and leaned into his palm where it had come to rest on her jaw.
“Please,” she begged. “Please, stay with me, at least for tonight.”
Sean looked at her a moment longer, then leaned in to kiss her. His tongue flicked out, tasting the salt on her lips, tasting the desire on her breath. Then he claimed her mouth hungrily, greedily, invading her with his tongue, and this time he did not stop her when she pushed at his swim trunks.
In moments, Sean lay naked over her, the powerful muscles of his body trembling as they both waited for the storm to break. Lightning lit the sky with sudden brilliance, and she could see the deep sea-green of his eyes. Eyes that looked at her with recognition and memory renewed, and confirmed he was the one. There was a flicker of understanding then, before the thunder boomed and the ocean surged in response.