DescriptionThree thousand years ago Narcissus was too self-absorbed to love anyone but himself. Trapped in a statue in a public park, he never expected this to change...but then a little girl named Violet stared into his face and called him "Nick". Now a grown woman whose boyfriend dumped her after she lost her job, Violet is in serious need of a friend—and lover—and Nick wants to be both to her.
The goddess Aphrodite has made him human for two nights and a day. Will that be long enough for Nick to learn the true meaning of love, so he can earn his freedom and a place by Violet's side?
This book is available in the collection Divine Interventions.
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Excerpt:Inaudible to human ears, a quiet chant began, a male voice, deep and sweet, reciting in a language from long ago:
“Oh mighty Aphrodite, Goddess of Beauty,
Thou art love,
Thou art fire,
Thou art all a man might desire.
Aphrodite, fairest of goddesses,
Bringer of passion,
Splendid and sweet,
Goddess of Beauty, hear my plea.”
Next to the fountain a whirlwind formed, picking up dirt and fallen leaves, collecting petals from the surrounding flowers. It turned, twisted, rising high into the form of a human being, and settled back to earth. When the dust cleared, a woman stood.
She was beautiful. The most beautiful woman imaginable, hair like a silver and gold curtain down her back, eyes the color of the purest sapphires. Her skin was like alabaster, tinged with rosy pinks that put the fairest peach to shame. The Goddess of Beauty indeed—Aphrodite, fairest of the ancients.
The goddess leaned against the basin of the fountain and spoke to the statue, witness to the sobbing figure with his frozen stare.
“Pretty words, Narcissus, very pretty indeed. And so sincere…” Her laugh rippled like the water trickling into the basin. She glanced over at the despondent form on the bench and folded her arms, one delicately arched eyebrow displaying her amusement.
“Such a flattering speech. I wonder what prompts you to make it?”
“Beautiful Lady. I…I merely wanted to see you, of course.”
“You merely wanted me to see this, you mean.” The goddess’s eyes ran over the still-crying figure and their ironic amusement developed into true sympathy. “She does seem rather upset.”
“Her name is Violet Smith. Her family is gone, her cat dead, her boyfriend dumped her, and last week she lost her job. Yes…she’s upset.”
The goddess glanced back at the figure on the pedestal. “How do you know all this? It was just a day ago that I granted your wish to move your head to spy on that bench.”
“I know this because the bastard she’s been living with broke up with her last week on that bench—after she told him about losing her job. It seems that the only reason he was with her in the first place was because she had a good income and could support him.”
“That’s a shame, Narcissus, but what would you have me do about it?” Aphrodite tapped her slender finger on the side of her cheek. “I could turn the selfish brute into a statue, I suppose, but that would hardly help her.”
“Well, I was thinking.” Narcissus’s voice grew tentative. “You remember that offer you made? To give me the opportunity to learn about love?”
The goddess clapped her hands together in delight. “You wish to take me up on that after so many centuries?” She looked thoughtful for a moment. “There is this one nymph I’ve been training. She’d be an excellent instructor…”
Carefully, Narcissus cleared his throat. “Blessed goddess, lovely as I’m sure your fair one is…I had someone else in mind.”
Again the goddess’s attention was diverted to the sobbing figure among the roses, her expression this time of disbelief. She pointed one long elegant finger. “You would prefer that to one of my special protégés?”
“Mighty Aphrodite, you know the kind of learning I want. While I want to understand the physical, I want more than that…I want to know about the emotional as well.”
A glint of a smile graced the perfect lips. “This from the man who drove away my favorite nymph when all she wanted was a taste of your gorgeous body?”
His voice turned desperate. “Please, great lady. You know I was very young and didn’t understand what your fair one offered me. I wish to learn about that now, but I want the other as well. I want to know about love.”
The great goddess turned to the unfortunate young woman on the bench and considered her with more interest. A speculative gleam filled her eyes. “A woman who inspires love in the man who could only love himself. Fascinating. I find this warrants further study.”