Authors: Dawn Steele
|The Blind Tiger: An Unusual Paranormal Romance|
Karen is in an unusual relationship with her strapping blond god of a boyfriend, Zach. She calls him 'Master', and waits in a kneeling pose, naked, for him to come home everyday. She cooks, cleans, and plays his complex psychological games in his little room with all his 'toys'.
And yet she loves him blindly. Or so she tells herself.
Then Noah, her handsome new neighbor, moves in. He is everything that Zach is not - kind, courteous, and an avid listener. He is also blind. Against her will, Karen finds herself attracted to him - a secret that she must keep from the volatile Zach.
Running from a mysterious past, Noah has his own dark secrets to hide. Like who blinded him, for example, and the fact that he isn't fully human. But he can't help being attracted to sweet Karen, and he senses all is not right in her world.
Then Zach suggests, "Let's invite Noah to dinner."
Their three worlds can only collide in one way.
THE BLIND TIGER is sexy psychological paranormal romance with twists and turns that you won't see coming.
WARNING: This book contains bondage, domination and submission, and sex so hot that it will jolt you.
THE BLIND TIGER
A Passionate and Unusual Shifter Romance
By Dawn Steele
This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales or persons, living or dead, is coincidental.
Copyright 2015 by Dawn Steele
Cover art by Kim Price
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dawn Steele is the New Adult/romance/shifter romance pen name of Aphrodite Hunt.
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Dawn Steele/Aphrodite Hunt is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author with more than 1 million books sold. Her stories have been in the Top 5 of the Amazon overall bestselling charts, the 10 of the Barnes and Nobles overall charts and the No. 1 spot in Amazon's Movers and Shakers. She is a Top 50 Amazon Most Popular author.
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THE BLIND TIGER
THE NEW NEIGHBOR
Karen was very aware that she was not wearing a bra and panties under her yellow summer dress as she walked towards the house next door
carrying a butter cake she had baked herself.
She was indeed naked underneath her dress, but not for the reasons you might think. She had no plans to seduce her next-door neighbor. She didn’t know who he or she was. For all she knew, they could be a family of six, though she doubted it. Everything was too quiet. No children screamed and laughed in the yard. No dog came bounding up as she walked up the driveway.
All she had seen was a moving van yesterday when she drove past the house. The movers in their uniforms came and went, carting the usual bed, sofa set, dining table set, and everything else. She hadn’t even seen the owner.
Right now, there was no car parked in the driveway. Was the new owner even home? She had no idea. She had been baking, cooking, and cleaning in her French maid outfit that fully showed off her buttocks and lifted her large breasts enticingly – even though she was alone in the house.
But there were CCTV cameras everywhere in her house. And she knew that Zach liked to tune in occasionally to check up on her.
Karen walked up to the front door. It was indeed very quiet here. Birds chirped from the trees, and the wind rustled the leaves. Behind the house, the woods offered leafy solace.
She rang the doorbell.
She waited for a whole minute. No one answered. She rang the doorbell again.
Footsteps came to the door along with a tappity-tap sound that sounded as though someone was walking with a cane.
Oh, he’s old,
she thought in disappointment. She was rather hoping for a woman around her age that she could talk to. But never mind. Maybe he liked cake.
The door opened. A man with dark glasses stood in the doorway. He held a white cane in his hand.
Karen took a step back. She hadn’t expected this.
“Hello?” said the man.
She studied him. He was a very handsome, dark-haired man in his early thirties. She couldn’t see his eyes,
but he had a firm jawline with slight stubble and a slender patrician nose. His cheekbones were angular and well formed. He wore a white tee that showed off his muscular forearms nicely
and a pair of blue jeans. His feet were bare.
He was very hot for a blind guy, she thought.
Scratch that. He was hot for any guy.
“Hi,” she said brightly. “I’m Karen, your next door neighbor.”
He smiled. “Hi. I’m Noah.”
He held out a hand, and she shook it. His flesh was nice and warm.
“I baked you a butter cake as a welcome to the neighborhood present,” she said.
“Why, thank you. That’s very nice of you. Would you like to come in, Karen? I haven’t unpacked everything yet, but at least there’s a couch for you to sit on.”
Then: “Yes, I would like to come in.”
Zach was the real jealous sort, but come on – this was a blind guy.
Noah turned, grabbing his cane. “I’m usually better at getting around than this. I’ll need time to get used to this house.”
“Can I help you?” she asked.
“No, thank you. I’ve got to get used to it quickly, so it’s better if I take all my knocks and falls as soon as possible.”
“Do you fall down often?”
“Fairly often.” He swung his head towards her, and she wondered if he navigated at the sound of her voice. “Just kidding. Please, have a seat.”
He waved at the couch.
The couch was purple, and Karen wondered if he chose the color himself. She put the cake on the coffee table in front of it and seated herself. There were two mismatched armchairs, and she also wondered if he bought them on purpose for some eclectic non-color coordinated arrangement or he couldn’t tell what he was buying. Or maybe he couldn’t care less.
Unpacked boxes were strewn around the furniture. The walls were completely bare and still smelling of paint. The house had been refurbished recently.
“Can I get you anything? Coffee?” Noah said.
“Oh, it’s OK.”
“Please, it’s no bother. I make very good coffee.”
Karen hadn’t been around blind people that often, so she didn’t know how to react. Did she treat Noah like breakable glass? Or did she pretend that he was completely normal?
Noah read her mind. “I can make coffee. In fact, I can do a whole lot of things people think I can’t do. Like crack an egg and walk on my hands.”
“You can walk on your hands?”
“Yes. I do yoga and pilates, too. And sometimes, just sometimes, I’ve been known to meditate.”
She couldn’t help laughing. “Sure. Please make us some good coffee.”
“Be right back.”
He went to what she assumed was the kitchen. After a while, she got up and followed him. She was curious, she had to admit. If he spilled boiling water all over himself, at least she would be there to call him an ambulance.
She stood at the kitchen doorway to watch as he went to a coffee machine. He felt for the nozzles, put a mug under them, and pressed a button. The machine whirled, and coffee sputtered into the mug.
Karen suppressed a laugh.
“Checking up on me, I see,” Noah said lightly. “That’s a figure of speech, by the way.”
It was amazing how completely at ease he made her feel.
“I wanted to uncover the secret of good coffee,” she remarked.
“Sneaking up on me is a good start.” He held out the mug.
She took it.
“Care for sugar or milk?” he asked.
“No. I take my coffee black.”
“I was hoping you’d say that. I haven’t done my grocery shopping yet. So there’s no cubed sugar anywhere in the house.”
“What about the other sugar varieties?”
“No refined or brown sugar either.” He mock sighed. “Or milk. Or chocolate flakes. You’ll just have to make do with my natural sweet temperament.”
She laughed again. She was enjoying herself. She took a sip of the coffee while continuing to study him. He was very, very attractive. And tall. She wondered what color his eyes were behind those dark glasses.
“Mmmmm, it’s good.” She was surprised how good his coffee was.
“It’s all in the beans. I import them directly from Indonesia.”
“Yes. They have the best coffee in Jawa.”
“Island in Indonesia. Huge island.”
“I only know Bali. I’ve always wanted to go to Bali,” she said wistfully.
“I’ve been to Bali.”
“Oh, have you? Was it before you –?” She paused, wondering if it was rude to ask the obvious.
Was it before you became blind?
“Yes, it was.” He didn’t seem ill at ease at all. “Can I get you anything else? Wait. That was a bad offer. My fridge isn’t stocked.”
“We’ll have to get your shopping done then. Do you want a slice of cake?”
“Your butter cake?”
“Sure. I can smell it. It’s freshly baked.”
“You mean you can smell it all the way from here?”
“I can tell that you’re a butter person.”
“Oh.” She dimpled. “I think I’ve put way too much butter in it.”
“No worries. I’m a butter person, too. I eat everything with butter. Steaks. Burgers. Ham and cheese. Even ice-cream.”
“Now you’re pulling my leg.”
“Maybe.” He smiled.
“The butter doesn’t show on you.” She could clearly appreciate how lean his frame was.
Wait, was she flirting with him? Her immediate thought flew to Zach and how mad he would get if she flirted with other men.
“It’s the handstands,” Noah joked.
“And here I was, thinking it was the Pilates. Let me get the cake,” she said.
The next twenty minutes were spent finding utensils from his boxes, cutting the cake, and eating it. It tasted surprisingly good.
“You’re a good baker,” he remarked.
“I try.” She was still wondering what his eyes looked like behind those dark glasses. “Do you live here alone?”
“Yes. I’m a writer. I moved here from Seattle. I’m looking for a bit of peace and quiet.”
“Well, you’ll certainly find it here. We live in our own little enclave at the edge of the woods. It’s a little way from town, though. You don’t drive, do you?”
“No. Obviously. But I found a cab company in town I can call upon.”
“Well, if you need anything –” She paused. Her natural instinct was to help people, but she wasn’t sure how Zach would feel about this.
But he’s blind! It isn’t as if you’re going to do anything sexual with him!
“Thank you very much, but I usually get by on my own,” he replied earnestly. “I wouldn’t dream of bothering you.”
“Well, I’ll give you my phone number. Just in case.”
“Much appreciated. Do you live alone, too?”
“No. I live with my boyfriend down the road.”
Zach and Karen had started off in a tumultuous, emotional rollercoaster of a relationship. But it had evolved into something much more. Something that she found exciting and natural to her character at first, but now she was not so sure.
Still, she was deeply mired in it. That was her lot in life.
“Great,” Noah said. “Maybe I’ll get to meet him, too.”
“Don’t count on it. He’s not the sociable type.”
“Right. No worries. Anytime he’s ready. Or not.”
They talked for a while more. She veered him off the subject of Zach and on to other things, like the town and where to get groceries. There were still many things she wanted to know about him – such as if he had been blind since birth. But you didn’t ask such things on a first meeting.
Then she said, “I have to go into town to get some stuff. Can I get you anything?”
“No. I’ll be fine. I have to take inventory first.” He waved his hand around ruefully. “It’s going to take a while, as you can see.”
“OK.” She got up and straightened her skirt. She felt a lot less self-conscious around him now that she knew he was blind.
He followed her to the front door. She stepped out of the house and turned to him.
“It was so nice meeting you,” she said.
“I hope we bump into each other again.”
“I hope so, too, Karen. My door is always open if you want to visit.”
“Thank you.” She wished she could say the same for hers. “So . . . see you around.”
“See you around, in a manner of speaking.”
She walked back to her car. She found herself turning around to look at him in the doorway again. He was ‘watching’ her, so to speak. She couldn’t suppress the smile that was on her face. Her heart was beating fast, and she hadn’t felt that way about . . . well, anyone in a long time.
But wait. She wasn’t supposed to be feeling this way about anyone at all. Let alone someone she had just met.
Her cheeks colored.
Thank goodness he couldn’t see them.
She got into her car, turned on the engine, and revved away before Noah could get under her skin any more than he already had.