As children, Kefira, the first child born of a human woman and Miratan lion male, and Tad Barton, human son of Earth's World Federation's president, swore to be best friends forever. But their relationship did not survive turbulence and misunderstanding. Now though, held prisoner aboard a ship traveling between worlds, they must put aside their animosity and work together in order to overcome their captors. Their only chance of survival depends on a complete subjugation of will, sharing body and soul in the most intimate of links that will bare secrets Kefira and Tad have spent a lifetime hiding. In this final chapter of the StarQuest saga, will they uncover the ultimate betrayal, or a love with the power to bring worlds together?
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November 13, 2009
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Excerpt from Best Friends Forever by Kate Douglas
Tad Barton read the notice on his handheld and frowned. The Miratan Council rarely dealt directly with humans, but he'd called to confirm the order he'd received, and this was definitely where he was supposed to be.
He nodded to the sentry on duty, showed his Starship Captain's ID badge and entered the huge chamber. He hadn't taken more than a couple of steps down the broad aisle when the sense of someone he'd not seen in ages suddenly slammed into him.
Kefira! Oh shit... What in the name of the Mother was she doing here? He managed to maintain his stride even though his heart lurched into high speed, pounding at least a million miles a minute. The closer he got to the supplicants booth, the more his fight-or-flight responses kicked in and the stronger his urge to flee...or maybe just throw up.
He'd requested duty on Mirat when he heard she was coming here for advanced studies and then, like a complete idiot, he'd done everything in his power to avoid her. What was it about the damn female, anyway? They'd been playmates from the time they met almost thirty earth years ago. She'd been the one to teach him how to use his Talents, the one who saved both their lives when they were kidnapped by a madman back in the last days of the rebellion between Talents and the World Federation.
She'd also been the object of every sexual fantasy and wet dream he'd had from the time he was old enough to experience either.
Kefira's parents had been the leaders of the rebellion--his father was president of the World Federation. Both sides had finally managed to come together in a manner that had resulted in a lifelong friendship between Kefira's family and his own, and had forged an enduring peace among the diverse factions of both Earth and Mirat.
He just wished he'd managed to forge an enduring peace with Kefira. For whatever reason, the little minx has decided to put space between them when she turned about fifteen. He'd been trying--unsuccessfully--to get back in her good graces ever since.
Not easy when he didn't have a clue what he'd done to get kicked out of those good graces, other than one quick teenaged kiss...and this probably wasn't what he should be thinking about as he prepared to face the illustrious Miratan Council of Nine.
By the time he reached the supplicants platform, Tad had his shields in place and his nerves under control. Kefira's head jerked up when he stepped into place beside her.
Good. She hadn't sensed him coming. He acknowledged her with a brief nod and then turned to face the Council, well aware of her confusion and obvious discomfort with his nearness. He was even more aware of her feminine scent, the perfect shape of her small breasts beneath the fitted skinsuit, and the thick fall of her dark mane flowing over her shoulders.
He checked, out of habit more than anything else, and her shields were solidly in place. In that respect, nothing between them had changed. She'd been shielding herself from him for almost twenty years. Tad stared ahead and thought of all those years without her friendship, without her quirky sense of humor, without her quick mind linked with his.
Best friends forever, they'd promised. For so long they'd been inseparable.
And then they weren't.
Damn, but he missed her. It was probably just as well she blocked him, or she might have figured out the truth.