Garnith saw fright and distrust building in Danielle’s entrancing blue eyes. He’d seen that look before in the eyes of those who witnessed him change, and he hated it, especially in the eyes of a beautiful maid. He’d never harm her, though she saw in his dragon form, and it could be a problem.
His eyes narrowed, contemplating her and the strange clothing she wore. She dressed in leather, like a warrior, but he saw no sword or other weapon. Her garments hugged every part of her body revealing far too much of the beautiful woman beneath, if she showed it, he would appreciate it. A slight smile softened his stern countenance. Tall compared to the females in the time he came from, she wouldn’t meet him on eye level. She would be about chin level and her strength impressed him. Unassisted, she pulled his sword from the pack while it was tangled and caught with a heavy piece of his armor. His gaze travel over her and settled on her boots, admiring the craftsmanship.
When she swung her leg over the seat of the thing she rode, he realized she was attempting to escape him. In a quick movement, he lunged for her instead of his sword and succeeded in reaching her.
“Where do you go, maid? I’ll not harm you. I need yer help!”
Garnith kept his voice even to calm the girl but when Danielle stiffened in his arms, he knew she’d panicked. His huge arms wrapped around her petite waist and pulled her from her bike. Despite the surge of liquid heat the contact with her body sent rushing through his veins, he felt her terror, too. Using the heavy boots she wore to her best advantage, she fought like wild creature kicking whatever body part her foot came in contact with. Garnith noticed she’d slipped on her riding gloves before he grabbed her, and they were made from a material far sturdier than leather. Danielle balled her fists and used them as punishing weapons striking his jaw with a well-placed punch. He turned her loose, amazed at her strength and ability as a fighter.
She tried to gain her feet but quickly, he again wrapped her in his iron grasp. This time she lay on her back with him atop her. Garnith watched Danielle draw a great breath to scream but covered her lips with his own to silence her, praying no one would happen by. Subdued with the tussle and his embrace, he held her down but drew away, to look at her face.
“Calm thyself, Danielle, I mean thee no harm.”
Taught by his changeling father, when his changes first occurred to control his many powers Garnith knew his eyes glowed in times of emotional pressure. Garnith learned to recognize those times and control each trait. He looked down into Danielle’s terrified blue eyes, wide and fearful, and worked to suppress his eyes luminosity. Garnith understood she was near hysterical from fright, he tried to restrain her least she harm herself.
“You’ll never get me out of my leathers, dragon, not without cutting them off. I won’t willingly take them off! If rape is your plan, are going to carry me away? I’ve heard the old tales of dragons!”
To his credit, he felt the heat of an embarrassed blush creep up his face but a mischievous smile touch his full lips. Even as strong as she was, he knew his strength was greater and eased his hold somewhat.
“Serves me right for being so entranced with your physique, after all, you are, a dragon. Maybe you’ll eat me later. To you I’m similar to a roast wrapped in bacon.”
Her words cut him in a way only Shannon could when they quarreled. Nevertheless, they seemed to invigorate her, and she again fought for freedom. Garnith tightened his hold and glowered down into her face.
“Let me go please…. I swear I won’t tell a soul I saw you change from a dragon. No one would believe me anyway, they’d think I was crazy.”
Garnith grew serious. He looked into her frightened eyes seeing her calm a little.
“Little damsel, do dragons not live in this time?”
“No! A few people believe there were once dragons, but no more. Now let me go!”
“Not just yet.”
Garnith felt a stirring in his body, one he only felt for a certain type of human female, such as Shannon. Fully human females didn’t usually sway him but this fierce little damsel was different. He lowered his lips to hers, for a gentle taste. Sweet, like clover berries in the spring.
“Tell me, ah Danielle, what time is this?”
“What do mean? I can’t see my watch.”
“What is a watch?”
“A watch tells what time of day it is. Don’t they have watches where you come from?”
Her bravado impressed him, and he smiled revealing gleaming white teeth. He felt the shudder that passed through her.
“Nay, we don’t have watches, and I am inquire’n what year it is, and for that matter, where I am?”
“The year, dragon, is 2012 and this is North Carolina, in the United States of America. Now let me up!”
“Not yet. What is that thing you and the others ride?”
He eased his hold, a little, distracted and amazed at the distance the wizard Llud had sent him. He noticed Danielle tilt her head quizzically. Her long hair, having come unbraided, spread on the grass.
“It’s called a motorcycle, an 848cc Ducati to be exact. What did you think it was?”
“Where I am from we have no motorcycles. From the air I thought they were a strange type of horse.”
“In some ways it is.”
Danielle pulled away from him a little but he wouldn’t totally yield his grip. He allowed his eyes to resume their mystical glow and enjoyed the little shiver of fear it produced in Danielle.
Garnith dipped his face closer to hers again, not quite touching her mouth. She moistened her lips out of either anticipation or fear, he couldn’t be sure which. The temptation to kiss her again was too great resist. Tenderly his lips met hers, a little longer this time.
“Ah, the engine’s power is measured in horsepower.”
Her answer came out soft and slow. Her tone had nothing to do with the power of one horse or many. Garnith held her gaze captive noticing the deepening color change his kiss caused in her eyes. His kisses seemed to have a resounding effect on her, possibly being kissed by a knight or a dragon wasn’t an event often experienced in this world.
“Where did you come from, dragon?” Danielle’s voice caressed the word dragon.
“My name is Garnith, and I came from 1055 as time was measured then, in the high in the most rugged northern part of Scotland. A thousand years? I’ve no idea where this North Carolina in America is.”
“I guess not. When you came from, America hadn’t been discovered – yet. How’d you get here?”
The shocked look in her eyes amused him. Garnith surmised by her tone that she was growing less fearful. She seemed more interested in him as their awkward conversation progressed.
“I was battling an evil wizard named Llud who pretended to be a priest of the new religion and used it as a disguise to gain power. He killed my future wife, Shannon, and terrorized our village. I failed to breathe on him fast enough before he finished his incantation sending me here. He hadn’t the power to kill me, only banish me. I knew it was far into the future but not how far It’s been over a thousand years but only a small time span to me. Here I stay, I have no way back, but he’ll not bother anyone again.