She Wanted An Office Job, Then Swam With Dolphins & A Seal
Ricarda, the goddaughter of a US Army General, works for the NSA. Usually she sits at desks to catch criminals, but now she has been assigned on a field trip. This mission is not her ordinary assignment. Together with a Special Operations Marine, Luis da Silva, she is supposed to go undercover as a married couple on their honeymoon.
Ricarda despises the macho, chauvinist man until she is faced with the choice of protecting her own life or saving his right back. From there ensues a journey that takes her across oceans with a US Navy Seal and across European mountain ranges from Italy all the way to Switzerland. All the while, she does not know where Luis is or why an entire army is trying to kill her before she can accomplish her mission.
Her journey takes her ultimately on a trip into the past which threatens the very foundations of her relationship with the man she loves.
Creation of The Book
I wanted to write something with a little more action. I wanted to create something that would not only be sexy, but also a real adventure ride. I had just read Lone Survivor by Marcus Luttrell and it had moved me to tears. I wasn’t going to write a book that had people die in like this, but I wanted some scenes that were action packed, and there had to be humour and steamy romance in it as well.
Then I saw a video from YouTube with some Mexican band. The idea was born. A SpecOps Marine would go on a mission with an NSA agent who usually worked in offices, but now got her first field assignment. Two worlds clash, the “civilised” Ricarda and Luis, the Badass Marine. It’s funny, but it’s also painful. He pulls all her triggers. Who hasn’t been in some sort of relationship with a lover, a friend, a colleague or other person and felt insecure and hurt by something the other said, judging from a perspective of past pain experienced?
And Luis seems to be just that man who says and does things that can drive a modern woman nuts. However, then Ricarda scratches more than the surface and both learn about each other more, which sheds a whole new light on each other’s character. I wanted to highlight the filters we have in our personal perspective that what seems so obvious in our eyes may not be the entire truth or the truth at all.
It also shows you how careless words based on superficial assumptions can trigger deep pain in another because of past traumas or hurtful experiences you may not know about. Ricarda learns that she has Luis sized up all wrong and Luis learns to be more circumspect with his remarks because they will otherwise get misconstrued.
Not always together, the two not only end up on a chase around the world and the ending is not what you would expect, either. Actually, you know me, there is always an element of light reference to spirituality in most of my romance books as well. So Ricarda goes swimming with a Seal and some dolphins. I’ve always wanted to swim with dolphins, it’s definitely on the top of my bucket list, right after a magical trip to Ancient Egypt. Dolphins are beautiful, intelligent and compassionate creatures and I have read many articles and watched quite a lot of videos and documentaries on how dolphins rescue people, what healing powers they have when you go swimming with them.
So as Ricarda is swimming in the ocean, there had to be dolphins. I’d been waiting to be able to put this in a book and I loved writing this part especially. It doesn’t last long, the journey continues, and there is only that much time a human, especially without advanced swim training can stay in the water, even when it’s warm. But this experience has a lightening effect on the mind when engaged in the thrill of the adventure, and it has an element of hope and love in a situation that is otherwise ruled by attempted murder and destruction on a grand scale.
The end is the most surprising I have ever come up with, which makes the book special to me. The situation cannot be resolved without Ricarda reaching deep into herself to bring out the Badass Heroine from within as well. There is team effort, personal growth and courage, not only under fire, but when she has to face one of the greatest fears in her psyche. In this, it is not only an adventure and romance story, it is also about personal victory over fears and doing the right thing even when no one would find out otherwise, had one not followed the path of honour, rather than personal comfort.
Ricarda and Luis are not the only characters featured in this story and there is more interaction with others, but I won’t tell too much. Find out for yourself!
She met Luis in the parking lot. The man was actually wearing a Hawaii shirt! She would have burst out laughing if he hadn’t been her pretend-husband. Instead, however, she stared at him in shock.
“No way is any husband of mine going to wear such a shirt!”
“What’s wrong with it? We’re supposed to be on holiday!”
“That doesn’t mean we have to be total goofballs!” she fired back.
“I’m not a goofball, I’m a normal tourist!” he argued.
“You’re an intelligent, ordinary tourist,” she corrected. “Plus, you’ve got Latin roots and you want to go into Mexico with a goddamn Hawaii shirt? Lose it!”
“You want me to take it off? Here? Now?” he asked.
“Yes! Put something else on!” she ordered. “Another shirt.”
“Fine.” He took his shirt off and pointed at his suitcase. “You choose, - wife!”
She didn’t lower herself to reply to that. She merely opened his suitcase, and dug through it to choose another shirt while her temperature was rising. She tried not to look at his upper body – or anywhere on his body for that matter. It proved to be impossible. Her eyes strayed over and upwards to his bare skin. The bulk of his upper body, the ripped, sculpted muscles, the tattoos…Yes, he was definitely one badass Marine!
At last she was able to concentrate long enough on her task to find another shirt and hand it to him. Then she quickly closed his suitcase.
“Hey, you need to put my shirt in there,” he reminded her of the offensive garment.
“Bin it!” she grumbled.
At that moment, a mother walked past with a toddler on her hand.
“I can’t believe, you wet yourself and I’ve got nothing to change you into!” the woman lamented.
“Excuse me!” Cadda tore the Hawaii shirt from Luis’ hand and offered it to the mother.
“My husband doesn’t need this anymore. Oh, look, there are parrots on it! I’m sure it’ll make a lovely rap, what do you think?” she smiled warmly at the little boy who stopped crying and smiled up at her.
The woman looked from her to Luis and started laughing.
“Thank you so much. She’s doing you a favour, Sir,” she grinned at Luis.
Luis pulled a long-suffering face as if the entire world had conspired against him, but when the woman was gone and Cadda turned around to face Luis, he looked really pissed. She didn’t understand how he could be so upset about a shirt, but he said nothing else.
“For God’s sakes, can you just smile? I’ll buy you another shirt! A nice one!” she grumbled.
He didn’t smile, however, until they neared the check-in counter, and then he took her hand as well.
“Showtime,” he reminded her.
They held back on the affection as much as they could but still playing their roles until they arrived at the hotel.
“The honeymoon suite!” the receptionist cooed excitedly, clapping his hands. “Que bella! You are so beautiful! Both of you! I can feel the loving energies between the two of you. How romantic!”
When they walked away from reception, following the young man’s directions, Luis snorted.
“Now is this guy full of shit or what?”
“Abundantly. In fact, he’s one big bucket of abundance!” Cadda took a jibe at the latest fashion in new age spiritual circles which was everyone being into abundance.
Luis looked down at her and grinned, picking up on it.
“Abundance just means overflow. If you’re full of shit and wish for abundance, you get an overflow of shit. That’s what happened to him,” she explained and Luis burst out into laughter.
He took her bag from her and murmured something about carrying it for her.
“What have you got in there? Bricks?” he gasped.
“An abundance of them!” Cadda said dead-pan. “Just my weights, actually.”
“I love your sense of humour,” Luis grinned. “So what’s really in there?”
“Just a couple of books,” she told him and for some reason she didn’t understand herself, she blushed and quickly lowered her eyes, turning away to hide it.
He gave her a shrewd look that she could feel right down to her toes, but dropped the subject until they were alone in their suite. Then he opened the bag at once.
“Cuffs, vibrator and a whip?” he asked incredulously, staring down at the collection.