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Dancing with My Elf

Lisa Carlisle

Ha. I’m a detective. Why would I need help from an exotic dancer on a case that involves dark magic? We’re searching for demons, not dollars.

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This firefighter performance was one of my favorites. Ladies loved a man who could rescue them from a blaze, and it riled them up. The scenario amused me as a half-dragon shifter, since I embraced fire rather than feared it.

Wait, who was that at the back of the club? My eyes bulged. Was that my—landlord? What in all of Hades Crazies was Nova doing here?

Awkward.

I wouldn’t let Nova distract me from my performance. This was how I made a living and enjoyed it. Who was the cute brunette sitting beside her? She scanned the club with a serious expression that stood counter to all the happy ones. Why wasn’t she paying attention to my performance? Forget avoiding Nova, now I wanted to know what was up with her friend.

As the next performer came out on stage, I stopped by tables, shaking my moneymaker. Ladies ran their hands down my chest and dangerously close to the thunder down under as they stuffed dollar bills into my G-string. The more women I danced with, the more fun we had.

That was what was so great about this job—everyone left happy.

As I headed toward the back of the club, Nova attempted to shield her face with her auburn hair. Too late, I’d already spotted her. Ah, I could have fun with this. I sauntered over to their table. The brunette’s gaze was now fixed on me. That was better. I put a lot into my performances.

I bent down and teased Nova, “What are you doing here? Making sure I make my rent money this month?”

Her face glowed like fiery lava even under the dim light of the club. “No, of course not. I’ll explain later.”

“That’s right. Now’s the time to dance.” I turned my backside toward her and twerked, laughing to myself as I pictured her mortification. This would be a great story to tell the other dancers at the end of the night.

I turned around to ensure I gave proper attention to Nova’s friend. As I moved closer, the lights reflected off red and golden streaks in her hair. I wanted to make sure every woman who came here had a good time—if they wanted it. I put my hands behind my head and rolled my body from shoulders to hips, watching her pupils widen.

I leaned forward and asked, “Hey, Nova’s friend. I’m Lucas. What’s your name?”

“Zoe.”

“Are you having a good time tonight, Zoe?”

“I am indeed.” She tipped her head. “You’re quite the dancer.”

Her praise encouraged me to show off, especially after her disinterest earlier. I bent down, putting my hands on either side of the seat cushion behind her, and maneuvered into a sensual body roll.

Her scent reached me, confirming her elf blood. But also, something else…

Something I never thought possible. My dragon woke with instant awareness, drinking this moment in. Every muscle inside me turned rigid. Mistake.

Instead of the seductive move I’d planned, my sudden stiffness knocked me off balance. As I fell on top of Zoe, she braced herself by raising her arms and darted aside. I still managed to pin her left shoulder.

“What are you doing?” She pushed my chest back with surprising force.

Bewildered, it took me a second too long to catch up to what was going on. Part of her was still pinned beneath me, and I pulled back. “Sorry, I stumbled.”

Stunned by the unfamiliar buzz flowing like a current beneath my skin, I blinked through the confusion. What in blazing saddles just happened? Whatever it was, it swept through me with the literal effect of knocking me off my feet.

My dragon rumbled with satisfaction. 𝘔𝘢𝘵𝘦.