Authors: Savanna Kougar
Stallion of Ash and Flame
Drojovv Zyan is a man-stallion of ash and flame. He's on a mission to save his world's crucial Earth portal from the fires ravaging the National Forest surrounding it. Pretending to be a tracker named Trail, he settles in a small Southeastern Arizona town. When he gets an eyeful of the beautiful ranch owner, Seneca, he stud-lusts after the Earth human, a woman he's not supposed to take as his Mate.
Trail leaves her alone until her brother is in a bad motorcycle accident and she needs a hired hand. Soon both of them are threatened by a horde of enemies, especially the aliens who plan to rape Earth of its gold and are determined to use amulets only Seneca can touch.
Trail must protect Seneca at all costs. His world depends on it, her world depends on it. And his heart comes to depend on it.
Siren Publishing, Inc.
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A SIREN PUBLISHING BOOK
IMPRINT: Erotic Romance
STALLION OF ASH AND FLAME
E-book ISBN: 1-60601-593-1
First E-book Publication: September 2009
Cover design by Jinger Heaston
All cover art and logo copyright © 2009 by Siren Publishing, Inc.
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To all the wild horses.
STALLION OF ASH AND FLAME
Copyright © 2009
Her Hired Hand
Southeast corner of Arizona, Spring 2009
Trail rapped his knuckles on the splintery wood of the ranch house’s front door
and made a mental note to replace it. The instant Seneca moved to answer, he gathered her fragrance into his nostrils, then let the blazing rose and gingery spice of her womanly flesh course through him. He suppressed his urge to breathe in her scent more fully. He’d decided to help her and, at the same time, make his cover on Earth look real.
Trail had admired Seneca from afar, mainly at the Saturday night dances in town. Despite the raging bulge of his cock every time he did catch sight of her, he knew she was not a woman to give a man a one-night tumble, so he’d always respected her aloofness toward him.
Even now, his balls ached to give her a mounting she’d always remember. One that would make her call out his name, his real name, Drojovv. One that would make her summon him when he ran as stallion, the way of lovers in his realm
His was an equine shifter world more advanced in technology than present-day Earth.
Since the time of Deluge, after the catastrophic sinking of Atlantis, Earth and his planet-world had been connected by a portal, many of them now. The first portal had been created by renegade Atlantean scientists looking for other worlds to inhabit.
, he commanded himself.
You’re only here to help a mare in need.
Before she opened the door entirely, Seneca peeked around the edge. The glisten of her bright sky eyes galloped over him. Recognizing him, she opened the door, her gaze meeting his without an ounce of pretense. Still, speculation flickered in their depths. Trail had decided a long time ago her eyes were a type of magic he wanted to explore. However, that could not be his destiny.
“Howdy, Seneca. I’m looking for a job. Mandy saw your ad for a hired hand until your brother can get back on his feet again. I’m applyin’.” He tried a small grin that he hoped looked more friendly than saying, “I want to grab your fine round ass and plunder your mouth until you melt against me.”
“Trail, is it?” She stepped outside, letting the door slam closed. Raising her chin, she eyed him almost fiercely and crossed her arms beneath her plump perky breasts. Hell, she rarely wore a bra, and now her nipples poked her flannel shirt, he knew not for him. The morning chill hadn’t been dispelled by the sun’s ferocious heat yet.
“Yes, ma’am. That’s my handle.”
“Why Trail?” Her tone interrogated him, even though her brows rose revealing her curiosity.
“End of the—” He paused, hoping for an amused glint in her eyes. Nothing. “As in, end of the trail.” Still nothing. “This is where I make my home, end-of-the-trail,” he added.
Trail had the wild urge to grab off his hat and finger the brim nervously like he’d seen in the old western movies he’d watched over and over. Yep, a filly like her would sooner kick his flanks, then race past him. That is, unless he minded his manners.
Her voluptuous dark pink lips formed an O. Trail caught himself wondering if she would respond to him like Maureen O’Hara had to John Wayne when he’d hauled her over his lap and given her ass a good blistering. Or when he’d seized her against him and forced a kiss on her fighting lips.
, he warned himself.
Stop thinking like that
“Well, if Mandy thinks you’re okay, it might work. Are you two an item now? Last I knew she was pining hard for Rick.”
Trail watched her become aware she chatted friendly-like with him. She halted, searching his face.
Dominant little mare
, he thought, with that stubborn chin and that fiery gleam in her eyes. Yep, she’d nip his withers as soon as she looked at him.
“Nope, we’re just coffee-drinking buddies. Mandy is still chasin’ after Rick. My bet is she’ll get him roped real soon.”
Seneca nodded, her loose hair taking on a life of its own. He swallowed, watching the long smooth strands of coppery red dance in a lazy rhythm.
“I can’t pay all that much. What kind of salary are we talkin’?”
Trail knew she didn’t want any man around. But she was desperate. Her brother had busted himself up riding a new Harley and wouldn’t recover for a good two months. She had her horses to care for, and the small ranch itself.
“Since I’m between jobs, all I’m looking for is enough to tide me over. If you let me bunk down here, it’ll save me rent money. And I’ll be close whenever something extra needs doin’.”
The sudden shyness of her expression surprised him some. He had expected wariness.
“I thought,” he continued, hoping he wouldn’t have to persuade her if she downright said no, “I could use your brother’s add-on to the house, since he’s staying in town.”
“Yeah,” she murmured, sadness crossing the sky of her eyes, “Rory is closer to everything that way. And Clara, his girlfriend, insisted on taking care of him.”
She sighed and dropped her shoulders, her weariness showing. Worse, he saw how dispirited she’d become. He knew it wasn’t just because of her brother, but because life hadn’t been overly kind to her from the stories
he’d heard. Hell’s own long race, she needed him to take care of her. To protect her. Every mare needed her stallion.
She raised her eyes to him, expectant. “You still haven’t told me what kind of salary you want.”
“You throw in some cookin’ and that’s all I need. Got some change saved up. I didn’t want to spend it on living expenses.” He lied. But, Earth humans were tricky as a herd of attacking hooves to deal with if things didn’t make sense to them.
“I’m not real good at regular cooking. But, I guess you could have use of the kitchen and the food supplies. Unless you don’t cook.” She eyed him and waited, her gaze guarded.
No wonder she’d never mated, being the type of mare who required special handling. Most human males wouldn’t have owned a clue. And there were only a few stallions in his home realm who would be capable of mounting her so she’d yearn for their lovemaking. If his mission on Earth hadn’t been absolutely crucial, he would have promised himself her soft round haunches. He would have promised himself her carnal taming.
“I can cook up a few meals.” He gave her a reassuring grin. “If you like oatmeal, I’m your man.”
“Oatmeal cookies,” she softly blurted out.
He knew she hadn’t meant to admit to him what she did like. He witnessed it deep in her eyes, the times men had used whatever she revealed about herself to manipulate her. Still, he smiled inside. Part of her responded to him.
“You want to show me the stables now? So your horses will get to know me.”
“We’ll turn them out for some run time outside. I was on my way to...” She stopped suddenly, her gaze riveted.
He pivoted around following her gaze. An ugly plume of smoke from a forest fire in the Federal Park bordering her land met the sky’s thin bank of low clouds.
“One fire after another,” she muttered. “And nothing is ever done to stop it. Not really.”
He knew she referred to the intentional firebombs tossed into dry brush and timber areas by drug runners and by the coyotes trafficking in illegal immigrants. The inferno blast of fire was used to divert anyone tracking them, or meant as retaliation against those they considered enemies.
He knew about another fire war in this southeast corner of Arizona, but couldn’t tell her. Those he called the Fire Starters, non-Earthers, battled with a certain group of elite humans. He knew because it was part of his mission.
“Yes,” he stated. “The winds are keeping it away. I keep the shortwave alert on,” he explained, then peered at her face while she watched.
“Yeah, I do, too. And, if need be, I can flood the canals Rory and I built last year. We spent a ton on that project, but it should keep the ranch and the horses safe from any wildfires. I’ll show you how it works later.”
“I heard your brother explain how it worked to Sally. She and her husband’s ranch is constantly threatened.”
“Yep, Rory and I gave them a tour not a month ago. I know you’re good at handling horses, but how are you at handling a rifle, Trail?” She lifted one dark red eyebrow, then moved down the short set of steps. Moving past him, she headed in the direction of her small but well-constructed stable.