The Rose and the Dragon PDF

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By Toni V. Sweeney

Nanny Wanted: Must have desire for excitement, adventure, danger.

It was like the plot of a Gothic novel: a young governess, her mysterious employer, his three motherless children…but there the story has a very different twist, for Dominic Andrus is an interplanetary criminal in a custody battle with his in-laws who are very dangerous indeed.

After one of Dom’s ships is bombed, he leaves Miranda with orders to speak to no one unless he bears the Andrus sigil of the Rose and the Dragon. That man soon appears; Dom’s brother Kitten—handsome, volatile, and nursing a secret anguish—and Miranda knows she’s met the man she’ll love forever. She and the children go with Kit, and…

…Miranda finds herself in something from a SF movie, as she’s swept up in a war with a madman intent on destroying not only Dom, his children, and Kit, but the entire Andrus family as well. Miranda wants to help but she doesn’t know how.

What can one little Earthling do to save the people she loves?

Science Fiction Romance, Contemporary

Sensuality rating: 2

Cover Art by Blaise Kilgallen

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Author: Toni V. Sweeney
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Chapter 1

“Tell me, Miss Wilson.” Dominic Andrus smiled at the young woman sitting across from him. “Why do you wish to work for me? Do you crave excitement, adventure, and...danger?”

“Would being a nanny really give me those things, Mr. Andrus?” Miranda smiled in return. “Frankly, I can’t envision working as a glorified baby-sitter as being either dangerous or exciting.”

“You haven’t met my children,” he replied quietly, with just a touch of irony. “So why did you answer my ad?”

She paused a moment as if thinking about that, before looking down at the paper she held in her lap, folded so the ad Dominic Andrus had placed in the New York Times was visible.

Nanny wanted. Must have desire for, and

ability to accept, excitement, adventure, and

danger.

It had been only forty-eight hours since she saw the ad. After only a few moments’ consideration, Miranda dialed the phone number given, listening to the recorded message:

This is Dominic Andrus. If you are calling in answer to my ad, please leave your name and phone number...

He returned her call the next day, asked for a meeting, and here she was. Idly, she wondered how many other applicants had sat across this table from him, and if she had any chance of being hired.

“Well, as my resume says...” She gestured at the typewritten sheet near his elbow, which he had yet to read. “I ran a small baby-sitting service while I was in college, taking care of graduate students’ children, mostly.” She paused before adding, “I like children and I think we get along. My brother tells me it’s because I’ve never really grown up. Kids can relate to me.” Oh, God, am I rambling? Why can’t I just give an answer and be done with it? Do I need all that embellishment? He smiled again. He has the most charming smile, she decided. It made his dark face glow. It was an impressive face. Dramatic. Like something from a medieval Italian painting of one of the Borgias or the Medici, ascetic but handsome with high cheekbones and a strong, straight nose. His hair was dark, almost black, combed back from his forehead and pulled into a tight ponytail tied low on his neck. Miranda imagined that hair was probably the bane of his existence. Though it appeared thick and straight, she was certain it had been heavily gelled. She could see tiny waves forming around his temples. By the time he left the restaurant, she was certain there would be little curls bouncing across his forehead. A diamond stud, tiny and discreet, glittered from his left earlobe. He was dressed in the height of masculine fashion... a navy suit with an equally dark shirt. Dolce & Gabbana, if she wasn’t mistaken. A burgundy silk tie in a subtle diamond pattern, breast-pocket handkerchief of the same color. Dominic Andrus looked as if he’d just stepped out of the pages of Gentleman’s Quarterly. Metrosexual? Probably. A drop-dead hunk? Definitely. And absolutely mouth-watering. She certainly envied his wife.

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