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Beyond the Ocean's Depths

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Summary

Stormy seas abound when widower, single-dad, and dolphin-shifter Torin discovers that fate has sent him another soul mate. Marine mammal veterinarian and pure human, October is everything he wants to hate but can’t in this unique take on the shapeshifter romance. After the tragic and criminal events that led to his wife’s death at the aquarium five years earlier, Marine Patrol Chief Torin isn’t so thrilled to have a new human poking her nose into the lives of the dolphin-shifters and aquatic life in his territory. But hilarity ensues as Torin tries everything to ensure he misses his soul mate connection with October. Fate, Onyx (Torin’s dolphin), and the pair’s teenage daughters have other plans, as everything that could go wrong, does for the duo. With friction in the air in more than one way, the pair must decide whether they will crash on the rocks, or finally allow true love to calm the sea. © All Rights Reserved. This book is copyrighted by Gwen Thames. Use of any part of this book without express permission from the author is prohibited.

Genre:
Romance / Humor
Author:
Gwen Thames
Status:
Ongoing
Chapters:
80
Rating:
5.0 7 reviews
Age Rating:
18+

Prologue: Who We Are

RHONDA WATERS

Long before the first Europeans landed on American soils… Long before Christ’s birth in Bethlehem… And even long before Neolithic star-gazers erected Stonehenge, my people thrived. From the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans, to the Mediterranean and even the Baltic seas, we claimed the Earth’s waters and coastlines as our home. We had always been a peaceful people, though when it came to protecting our homes and families, few were more fierce.

Yet, not one history book acknowledges us outside of erroneous myths. To our credit, for millennia we have endeavored to remain a secret to those outside of our sphere, and will continue to do so for the rest of time.

Who the heck are we?

Shifters

No, not the wolf-shifters (i.e. - werewolves) you’ve probably read one too many romance novels or watched one too many B-rated horror flicks about—thank God!

Think much more intelligent… Sleeker, faster, way better looking, not to mention, civilized, and with a whole lot less fur. Oh, and did you catch on to the bit about the water? That’s your big hint.

Yes, we’re mammals. No, sharks are not mammals, and despite what the sharks on “Finding Nemo” say, fish are not their friends and never will be.

Anyways, as you’re only a pure human, and your brain isn’t quite as developed as ours, I’ll end your suffering and tell you already. I come from a long, distinguished line of dolphin-shifters.

That’s right, I said dolphin-shifters. Now wipe that goofy grin from your face and let me explain a bit more about the contemporary dolphin-shifter culture. Like any other culture on Earth, we have our own Creation Story myths, varying in nature depending on what part of the world we come from. Many indigenous beliefs include shifters of sorts into their traditions, and perhaps there’s some truth to these stories. Scientifically, some believe we evolved from dolphins, while others say from people. More contemporary shifter-scientists put us in more of a ‘mutant’ category versus evolutionary, so maybe the X-Men aren’t so fantastical after all.

Just to make it easy on your pure human mind, let me sum it up like this. Basically, you have two individual entities—a human and a dolphin, both with their own characteristics, personalities, and bodies. But, they’re linked physically and only one can be “out” at a time. Stop… Put that crazy image you have of a half man, half dolphin running down the beach out of your mind already! Yes, we morph from one to the other, and it’s not pretty, but it’s pretty darn quick. Anyways, when the human side is out, the dolphin can be heard within the human side’s mind and the two can interact and converse just like me and you. Then, when the dolphin is out, the human is inside their mind. It’s just two individuals sharing the same physical real estate, adapting the body to their own specific needs.

Where do we live, you ask? Well, here in Florida you’ll find a few dolphin-shifter communities, mostly near the larger cities on the coast. Unlike the werewolf “cults” you’ve likely read about, dolphin-shifter communities are more open and tend to hide in plain sight, neighboring with pure humans and other sea-shifters—yes, there’s other kinds, too—though we don’t usually mix with shark-shifters, for they’re a lawless, rowdy bunch. You’ll usually find us owning private beachfront properties, so we have easy access to the water and can let our inner dolphins out, away from the prying eyes of the non-shifter public.

While not a usual occurrence, it’s not against our culture to marry outside of the dolphin-shifter culture, though children from these relationships will either be non-shifters or take after one parent. Now, don’t go confusing things—there’s no such thing as dolphin-seal-shifters or wolf-eagle-shifters out there. Genetically, it just doesn’t work. If you want to know more, you’ll have to ask my new sweet, marine biologist daughter-in-law—she’s got more of a mind for all that sciency stuff.

Now, my family has been in the Naples area for several generations, and that’s where I raised my son, Torin, who you’ll meet later on. He married the love of his life and soul mate, Sandy, several years ago, and they moved to a little town further north called Navarro Beach after Torin got into Marine Law Enforcement. I was so proud of him when he graduated from the Academy! And now he’s the Chief of Navarro Beach’s Marine Patrol Unit. Can you tell I’m a proud mamma?

But it hasn’t all been fair sailing though. As a matter of fact, it’s been right down rough these last few years after the tragedy with Sandy and her dolphin, Jayde. I ended up moving in with Torin and Rainie—their beautiful daughter and the light of my life. Despite it all though, as a widower and single father, I have to admit Torin did an outstanding job.

Anyways, I’m telling you way too much. If I don’t stop now, you won’t have a story to read, and you don’t want to listen to an old woman telling stories all day. So without further ado…

}<<(((}> * <{)))>>{

It was two households, both alike in dignity,
In fair Navarro Beach, where we lay our scene,
From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.
From forth the fatal loins of these two foes
A pair of star-cross’d lovers take their life…

Oops, that’s not right. No one took their life in this story, though I have a feeling they came close to drawing each other’s blood at times…

Let me quit misquoting Shakespeare and hand this crazy, but romantic story over to my family.

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Dana: Super tolle Geschichte, auch super geschrieben. Nur das Ende war Kacke. Hoffe das es noch einen 2. Teil gibt bzw. folgt

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