Captivate (Submerged Sun #1)
by Vanessa Garden
Genre: YA Fantasy
Release Date: August 10th 2016
Summary from Goodreads:
In a glittering underwater world, where danger lurks behind beauty and power…
For the past twelve months since her parents’ death, seventeen-year-old Miranda Sun has harboured a dark secret — a secret that has strained the close relationship she once shared with her older sister, Lauren. In an effort to repair this broken bond, Miranda’s grandparents whisk the siblings away on a secluded beach holiday. Except before Miranda gets a chance to confess her life-changing secret, she’s dragged underwater by a mysterious stranger while taking a midnight swim.
Awakening days later, Miranda discovers that she’s being held captive in a glittering underwater city by an arrogant young man named Marko…the King of this underwater civilisation.
Nineteen-year-old Marko intends to marry Miranda in order to keep his crown from falling into the sinister clutches of his half-brother, Damir. There’s only one problem. Miranda is desperate to return home to right things with her sister and she wants nothing to do with Marko. Trying to secure her freedom, Miranda quickly forms an alliance with Robbie — Marko’s personal guard. However, she soon discovers that even underwater, people are hiding dangerous secrets…
Captivate (Submerged Sun Book 1)
“Miranda Sun, will you do me the honour of becoming my wife?” Marko’s chest swelled with each breath. “Because if you say yes then you are bound to me for eternity, even in death.”
I sucked in a shaky breath and closed my eyes for a moment before opening them to gaze down at him.
“Does it have to be in death, too?” I said, trying my best to make light of it all.
Marko, still on his knees, whispered hoarsely, “Yes. It has to be forever, Miranda.” He bent his head and pressed his lips to the back of my hand.
I gasped and tried not to melt like candle wax.
“I’m serious about this, Miranda.” Smouldering eyes bore into mine. “Are you?”
“Yes,” I whispered, restraining the urge to extend my fingers and brush them against his mouth.
He got to his feet, took a step closer and traced his thumb across my cheek. Then he took me by the wrists and wrapped my arms around his neck before snaking his own arms around my waist to draw us together.
“Now that we’re engaged, Miranda, I guess you won’t object to this,” he whispered before lowering his face. He was going to kiss me and I wasn’t going to stop him. I’d be lying to myself if I said I was only doing this for my freedom. I wanted his lips on me.
The kiss was gentle at first, his lips moving over mine with just enough pressure to make my mouth tingle. A soft moan rumbled in his throat, and my stomach fluttered. I caressed his neck and slid a hand up into his thick, dark hair and in response his hands moved over my waist to rest on my hips.
When our tongues touched, the kiss became urgent. Marko’s lips trailed down my neck, his breath warm and fast against my skin. My hands slid over the breadth of his shoulders and down his arms, his biceps flexing and hardening at my touch.
Another groan escaped his throat and he pressed his hips against mine so that I could feel just how much he wanted me.
When we gravitated towards the bed, I suddenly realised things were getting way out of hand.
What on earth was wrong with me?
“Stop, Marko,” I whispered between kisses, and he instantly complied, his breathing ragged.
“Having second thoughts?” he asked, licking his lips and watching me through thick, dark lashes.
I swallowed thickly. “Of course not. I’m just … I was—”
“You don’t want to marry me, Miranda, admit it.” He smiled wryly. “Even though you enjoyed the kiss.”
I shook my head. How could I have let myself lose control with the person holding me captive? Why did he have such an effect on me?
“Of course I want to marry you. I said so, didn’t I?” I folded my arms across my chest.
“Even if I tell you I plan to kiss you like this on a daily basis? You still want to play pretend?”
Yes, even more so.
Oh god, why was he so intent on knowing my true feelings? Wasn’t this what he wanted all along? For me to agree to his plans?
I kept my arms folded and raised my head. “Yes, and I’m not pretending.”
“So you want me to believe that you’ve suddenly fallen hopelessly in love with me,” he said.
I ignored the smirk on his lips and said, “Yes.”
He folded his arms across his chest and stared down at me. Amusement sparkled in his icy blue eyes.
“Say it, then. Declare your love for me.”
Blood pounded in my ears. My cheeks burned. He stood there, waiting.
“You first,” I said, my voice trembling. “How do I know that you’re not pretending?”
He raised his brows and said, “Fine,” before snaking his arms around my waist and locking eyes with me. “I love you, Miranda.”
It if wasn’t for his strong arms holding me, I would have melted to the floor. No boy had ever said that to me.
“Good. I … I love”—I cleared my throat— “you, too.”
Marko grinned and kissed me again.