A Change Of gender And Beyond
Chapter 16
by F.W. Hinton
          A hush fell  over  the gallery that surrounded the operating
          theatre as Professor  Gaisford, scrubbed up and ready walked
          in. His surgical  team,  gowned  and  waiting.   There  were
          obstetricians,    gynaecologists    and    specialists    in
          sex-reassignment from centres  around the world. All of them
          having read the Professor's paper on cloning genitalia using
          the patient's own erectile tissue and a suitable vehicle.

          The  completion of  Shaun  Maclaren's  reassignment  program
          coming at the  end  of the week long congress was the climax
          of the event.   The  Professor  and  his  colleagues knew it
          would give the  stimulus  needed to further the cause of the
          world's transexual population, and those unfortunate victims
          of genital accidents  and  diseases.   He  had  said as much
          during his lecture on the first day of the congress that had
          been arranged by  the  Middle  Eastern College of Obstetrics
          and Gynaecology.

          Shaun Maclaren lay  on  the  table  under the lights. He had
          been prepped. The  Anaesthetist, John Walsh had injected the
          medication  to put  him  to  sleep,  and  a  nurse  eased  a
          ventilator down Shaun's  trachea.  The cloned penis had been
          removed from the  vehicle  and was packed in the gas-cooled,
          stainless-steel container.

          Shaun had been  told  days before that the, now flaccid base
          of the clone  would  be  grafted  into his vagina.  That the
          urethra  tube  from   his   bladder   would   be  joined  by
          micro-surgery to the  pipette  that  ran  the  length of the
          penis to it's heart-shaped head.  That his clitoris would be
          attached to another  pipette  and  buried  in  the shaft the
          third pipette being used for body secretion.

          Shaun was anxious  to  know  how  long it would be before he
          could use his new manhood to it's fullest extent.

          " With rest  and  Leah's  nursing,  I  would say about three
          months," the Professor told him.

          " As long as that? I thought---."

          " It's only  an  estimate  Shaun,  and  a lot does depend on
          Leah. Manipulation by  yourself  or  your  partner  could be
          possible within a  few  weeks.  However  there  is one major
          problem we have  to  overcome first, and that is the closure
          of your vagina."

          " I thought  that  would  have  been  easy. Surely it can be
          closed by grafting or some other form of surgery."

          " It's not  that simple," the Professor said with a grin.  "
          We wouldn't want  it  to  break open. It has to be more than
          grafted and sutured.   Those procedures will help but it not
          the complete answer."

          " What is?" Shaun asked

          "  When  you   came  here  two  weeks  ago  for  your  final
          examination,"  the  Professor  continued,  ignoring  Shaun's
          question.  " We  removed  a  sample of skin from the side of
          your vagina. Perhaps you wondered why."

          " I did," Shaun replied thoughtfully, " the patch has almost
          healed. Leah seems  pleased  with it's progress. But I still
          don't see what that has to do with closing my vagina."

          " To give a rough explanation Shaun. The sample was immersed
          in a liquid  enzyme  that  breaks  it  down into millions of
          cells. Our lab  technicians  then transferred the cells into
          culturing flasks containing cells that stimulate growth.

          They were placed  in  an incubator, where they multiply very
          quickly and bond  into  sheets  of skin. Although the sheets
          are fragile, about  the texture of tissue paper they will be
          grafted, in small  sections around the base of the penis and
          over the sutured  vagina.   This  will ensure it's permanent

          You have to  realise  Shaun, that it will take some time for
          the new skin  to  toughen  and  take on normal pigmentation.
          Once it has  gained  full  strength the wound will not break
          down,  and you  will  be  able  to  use  your  manhood  with

          One other thing  Shaun,  testosterone  injection will not be
          necessary in the  future.  A  new  pellet has been developed
          which will be  placed  under  the  skin  close to your spine
          every three months.  It  is  a  procedure  Leah  can  handle
          without a doctor's supervision.

          Shaun Maclaren was  happy.  This  was the last hurdle before
          becoming a whole man.  He had waited most of his life. A few
          more  months  would  not  matter.  Leah  had  discussed  the
          procedures with him.   They  both  knew,  their hopes, their
          dreams would come true before the end of another year.

          Using a high  speed  oscillating blade the Professor widened
          the vaginal canal  to  receive  the  base  of the penis. The
          urethra tube had been grafted, the clitoris implanted in the
          shaft.   The  operation  in  it's  final  stages,  all  that
          remained was the base and closure of the vagina and the skin

          Professor Gaisford glanced  at John Walsh It seemed that his
          eyes and forehead  had  turned  amber  under  the lights. He
          stood  beside  his  cylinders  monitoring  Shaun  Maclaren's

          The  Professor,  although   occupied   with   the   grafting
          procedures was still  alert  to  everything  else around the
          operating table. The  nurses  handling  the instruments, the
          gas  bags, expanding  and  contracting  with  the  patient's
          in-drawn and out-going  breath.   The eyes of his colleagues
          staring at him from the gallery.

          It seemed along  time  since  John Walsh had given out blood
          pressure or pulse  readings.  He  glanced  at  his assistant

          " Blood pressure!" the doctor called.

          " Pulse fading,"  the  anaesthetist  responded,  turning one
          cylinder up and the other one down.

          There was a soft purr of oxygen.

          " Pulse weak---now  erratic," there was a note of anxiety in
          the voice of John Walsh,

          " Adrenaline!" Professor Gaisford commanded.

          There was swift,  disciplined movement in the theatre, and a
          muffled gasp in  the gallery as two amps of carb were called

          The EKG leapt  back  into  life. There was a sigh of relief.
          Shaun Maclaren was out of danger.

          Recovering  his  concentration   with  visible  effort,  the
          Professor bent over his patient again.

          " Skin hooks Nurse."

          The skin hooks  came  into his line of vision as he drew the
          open edges of Shaun's vagina together and watched them meet.
          Then he placed  the first suture with the turn of his wrist,
          driving the half-circle  needle  of  fine  steel through and

          When the other  needle had been picked up by the holder, the
          assistant surgeon had  drawn the vagina together.  The third
          and fourth sutures went with similar precision.

          A technician from  the ground floor laboratory came into the
          theatre with petri  dishes of new skin.  Each piece the size
          of  a  postage   stamp   and   backed  with  petroleum-jelly
          impregnated  gauze.  With   fine  tipped  forceps  Professor
          Gaisford plucked out  the gauze backed graft and position it
          over the sutured  vagina,  knowing  that  once the graft had
          been laid it could not be removed.

          " I'll do  several  at a time," he informed his assistant, "
          then the suture  nurse  can  take over and secure the grafts
          with staples."

          The assistant surgeon  examined  the  new  skin,  "  it's so
          thin,"  he observed  realising  the  problem  of  the  skins

          The normal thickness  of  the  epidermis  is  about  fifteen
          cells, the Professor  added,  placing  another graft, " this
          cultured skin is  only  seven  cells  thick .  In places not
          even that. Barely  visible to the naked eye. Easily torn. No
          underlying fibrous dermis is the problem."

          " Could almost  read  a newspaper through it," the assistant
          surgeon quipped.

          An hour later  the  grafts  were  in  place.  Each  one  two
          millimetres apart, covering completely the closed vagina and
          the base of the penis.

          " This would  be about the most painstaking operation I have
          ever performed," the  Professor  told his staff, as he stood
          back from the table, a dull ache in his legs and back.

          He watched the  head  nurse  insert  a catheter and wrap the
          area  in  nylon  netting.  Another  nurse  covered  it  with
          absorbent gauze and  bandaged  the  whole  of  Shaun's lower

          In the recovery room Leah Wainwright sat beside Shaun's bed.
          His hands moved  above  the  covers,  groping,  as though to
          touch the dressing.  She  reached  out  and  held  his hands

          " He's coming  out,"  she  told the nurse at the foot of the
          bed, " in a minute he'll open his eyes."

          He tried to  move.  Leah told him that he must lie perfectly
          still. That a  catheter had been inserted. She told him that
          if the area  was knocked, even accidentally the grafts would
          tear. The nurses  tiptoed  around  him, afraid he might be a
          ticking bomb, waiting to explode.

          Ten  days  later   he   was   taken  into  the  theatre  and
          anaesthetized. The nurses  removed  the  outer dressing. The
          assistant surgeon took  off  the  netting and lifted out the
          staples.  With  his   forceps  he  teased  away  the  gauze.
          Underneath the patches  of skin had grown together.  Shaun's
          vagina, completely disappeared,  new  skin covered the whole
          area.  The cloned penis, healthy, strong and erect.

          Professor Gaisford came  into  the theatre as the last piece
          of gauze was being teased away. He examined the sight with a
          certain satisfaction.

          " This is  a  tremendous  success for our hospital," he told
          his staff, "  thanks  to  your  efforts  we  now  have world
          acclaim. We can  help so many people. Not only those similar
          to Shaun Maclaren,  but victims of unfortunate accidents. We
          can help them to find a better quality of life."

          At the end of the following week Shaun put his feet over the
          side of the  side  of  the  bed,  Leah was there to help him
          regain his balance.  During the afternoon she allowed him to
          go to the  bathroom  on  his own to shower. The tears flowed
          down his cheeks. This was the first time he had been able to
          touch, to hold  his  manhood.   It  looked  a pale, delicate
          pink, it felt soft, warm and smooth.

          He wanted to  shout,  tell the world that he, Shaun Maclaren
          was now a  whole  man.  In  the  half light and steam of the
          hospital bathroom he  looked  in  the mirror, wiping it with
          the palm of  his  hands.  For one brief, transient moment he
          saw the face of his angel, yet he wasn't quite sure, perhaps
          it was the  face  of  his  mother. He remembered her telling
          him, may have  been  in  a  dream that one day he would be a
          complete man.

          As  the  skin  slowly  grew  stronger  he  carried  out  the
          exercises the Physiotherapist  recommended.  He leant how to
          control his bladder  and how to walk like a man.  They spoke
          about body language,  that  he  should cross his legs at the
          ankles and to  sit  solidly  in a chair.  He felt a sense of
          outstanding achievement when  he  no longer needed to wear a
          napkin. He wondered  if  babies  when being trained by their
          parents had feelings  similar to his own.  If, being able to
          control the liquid  that  flowed  from  the tip of the penis
          gave them the  same  kind  of  thrill. He longed for the day
          when he could  leave the hospital. Go into a male toilet and
          use the urinal, and stand amongst other men.

          He thought about  making  love,  wondered what it would feel
          like, wondered if  it  would  hurt,  if  it  would  harm his
          new-found manhood.  He  dreamed about women, but wanted only
          Leah, his manhood too precious for just anyone.

          He spoke to  Leah about his inner-most feelings. He knew she
          wanted only him.

          " It would  be  better  to wait at least another month," she
          told him, " we will know by then if it will be safe."

          Leah Wainwright had  never  had an honest relationship. As a
          man, before the  sex-reassignment  he  had  dated  only  one
          woman. He had  been  dominated  by  her,  told how to dress,
          think, look feel  and behave. When Leah the man rebelled the
          woman turned on him, had him beaten up then dumped him.

          After  the  reassignment   she   was  always  too  busy  for
          meaningful relationships.  She buried herself in her work at
          the hospital, spent  all of her spare time studying surgical
          techniques, and passing  exams.   Her ambition to become the
          Matron of a  Teaching hospital. The one or two staff members
          who dated her,  made  her feel so insecure, that she avoided
          their company and  endeavoured  to  put all males out of her
          life forever.

          Shaun Maclaren was different.  Even before he became a whole
          man,  he  had   that   certain  something,  that  she,  Leah
          Wainwright found irresistible.  She  had  travelled half-way
          round the world just to be with him. Now he had given her an
          engagement ring, and  she  knew  that  her  dream of getting
          married in his  wedding  dress,  as  his mother had told her
          really could come true.

          The hospital staff  held  it's annual nurses reunion dinner.
          Having decided to  give  up her career, Leah knew this would
          be her last  party.   But for Shaun Maclaren it presented an
          opportunity to prove to the world that he was a real man. He
          wanted to celebrate.   He  thought  of  it  as  a coming out
          party, a chance to assert himself as a man.

          Halfway through the  evening  he  got  drunk  and wanting to
          dance with Leah,  began  looking  for her.  Someone told him
          she had gone  upstairs,  and while waiting for her he danced
          with a junior  nurse.   Feeling  the floor tilt slowly up he
          hung on to  her  and  as  he  thought managed to stay on his
          feet.  He  turned   the  girl  around  and  around,  dancing
          beautifully, reversing with  faultless  grace.  A male nurse
          pulled him to  his  feet.  It was then he realised he'd been
          rolling all over  the  dance  floor.  They  took him outside
          where he was violently sick.

          There was a tearing, stinging pain in his groin. The thought
          that he might  have  damaged his manhood quickly cleared his
          head. He needed  Leah.  She  was the only one who could help
          him.  He looked  for  her  in every car in the park. In some
          there were couples,  a few swore at him, others called him a
          peeping Tom. Someone  threatened  to give him a hiding if he
          didn't go away.

          He went back  to  the  dance  floor hoping she was there. He
          looked in the  rooms on the ground floor. There were couples
          in every room,  some kissing, some talking others near naked
          making love. The frustration was more than he could bear.

          He fought back  the  tears  and  as  suspicion took hold ran
          upstairs to the  consulting  rooms. He opened one door, then
          another. He ran  along  the corridor, saw Leah in one of the
          rooms, wearing only a surgical gown, a man, bending over her
          as she lay on a bed. Without stopping to think he flung open
          the door.

          " Leah!" he  screamed.   " Where have you been? What are you
          doing --alone with a man---lying on a bed?"

          Leah raised her hand to her face in horror. He saw the ring,
          his ring. The  diamond  engagement ring he bought a few days
          ago when she promised to marry him.

          This world.  This  masculine  world  he had only just really
          entered, the world  he  had  longed to be part of all of his
          life was collapsing  around  him.  His  head in a turmoil of
          love, hate, jealousy.  She was there on the bed with another
          man. He wanted  to  do something to her, kill her, smash her
          beautiful face. Anything,  something  that  would  humiliate
          her, and destroy  his  own humiliation.  Leah! His Leah. She
          knew all his  secrets. Slept in his home. Even shared in the
          visions of his mother.

          'What had Leah---and  this  man---this stranger been doing?'
          The thought of  him  touching her, kissing her, his hands on
          her legs -  where else. Everything he hadn't done, wanted to
          do to himself.  In  his mind, the agony of jealousy, brought
          with it a kind of lustful pleasure.

          The man turned,  stared  at  him. " Get out immediately," he
          shouted angrily. "  You are in my consulting rooms. You will
          be told when you may enter."

          Too hurt to  argue Shaun left the room and sat on a bench in
          the corridor, crying  as  though  his heart would break.  He
          tried looking in  the  window  but  a screen had been pulled
          around the bed.

          " You may come in now Mr Maclaren," the doctor called.

          Shaun entered the  consulting  room  after  an  eternity  of
          sitting outside staring  into space. The doctor motioned him
          to a chair in front of his desk.

          " You may go to Leah as soon as she has finished dressing."

          Shaun thanked him, sheepishly.

          " She is  one  of  my  very  special patients, and needed to
          consult me on  a  personal  matter,"  the  doctor offered in

          " But surely  an  appointment in the morning would have been
          better for everyone," Shaun argued

          " That, as Leah will tell you would not have been possible,"
          the doctor retorted.   "  I  am going on a lecture tour, and
          have to leave  early  tomorrow morning. There would not have
          been enough time."

          " I'm sorry Doctor. I thought---."

          " I know  exactly  what you thought Mr Maclaren," the doctor
          said sternly, "  I  suggest you save your apologies for Leah
          Wainwright. She's the  one who has been hurt.  You must know
          she is in  love  with you. That because of you she is giving
          up a brilliant  career, which I feel is most unfortunate for
          the hospital ."

          " The doctor  stood  by his desk, gathered up his papers and
          prepared to leave.  " You may go to her now Shaun."

          He stood for  a  moment  by  the open door and watched Shaun
          hold Leah's hands as he sat by her side.

          "I'm so sorry  Leah," Shaun whispered, " please forgive me I
          had no idea.  I  know  I  was being silly. I promise it will
          never happen again. I should have known he was your doctor."

          " He's not  only  my doctor," Leah said as she kissed him, "
          he's my surgeon, the one who helped me become a woman."

          Leah was worried about returning to the coast, worried about
          Shaun's work as  a  tour  guide.   Once  they were back, she
          thought, Shaun in  his  old environment if she would be left
          on her own for days, even weeks at a time.

          " When are we going back to the coast?" she asked.

          " Never!" he answered with a cheeky grin.

          " Never! I don't want to stop in this place, day in day out,
          nothing to do.  I  might  as well go back to the hospital. I
          thought you wanted  me  to  give  up  my career, settle down
          somewhere. Who knows  one day with Professor Gaisford's help
          we could start a ---."

          " Leah! Stop  please,"  Shaun  interrupted.  " We have a new
          life. A new beginning, new hope."

          " I know  Shaun,  and  that  is what worries me. How will we
          manage. We need money---for so many things."

          " We'll manage,"  Shaun reassured her.  " The royalties from
          the book, even  those  from the reprint are more then enough
          to last us  for years. You don't need to go back to nursing.
          There's so much  we  have  to  see. So many places I want to
          show you.

          Perhaps  in  a  year  or  two,  when  we've  had  enough  of
          travelling, we could  settle  down,  think  about a---.  The
          flat on the  coast," he added quickly, " has been sold. This
          flat, your unit, will you keep it?"

          " This place?"  Leah repeated, looking a little pensive, " I
          suppose we--could sell  it.   Lease  it out---something like

          " We could if that is what you really want."

          " Not really Shaun," she whispered, " I'd love to give it to
          the hospital. It  would  be  our way of saying thank you for
          our lives. Thank  you  for  helping  us  along  the  road to
          freedom. Perhaps it could be arranged that people in similar
          situations be allowed  to  use it while waiting for surgery.
          Or it could be used as a convalescent unit."

          British Airways 747  landed  at Shannon airport.  It was one
          of Shaun's ambitions to visit Galway. The birth place of his
          grandfather Angus Maclaren.  He  hoped  to  find a relative,
          someone who might  know something about him. As a tour guide
          Shaun had tried many times to get an assignment to visit the
          Emerald Isle.

          Vaguely he recalled  his  mother  talking  about  the Twelve
          Pins. A cottage  in  Connemara,  where  his  grandfather was
          born, of a  photograph  he  had  given  her. Hours before he
          passed away, how  he  had  made  his only son Ian promise to
          take Rachell, his  mother  to  Ireland,  a  promise that was
          never fulfilled.

          At the airport a hire car was waiting. With Leah he drove to
          Bunratty where accommodation  had  been  booked in the local
          pub. As the  open-topped  sports  car leapt through the lush
          landscape, it seemed oddly silent, as if it belonged only to
          them. They drove  with  a  tremendous  feeling of elation, a
          feeling of freedom,  of  a future they would spend together.
          Of a life  without  prejudice,  a life they could call their

          It was easy for them to believe the legend that, 'There's no
          mist in Ireland---it's the tears of joy in your own eyes you

          At the pub a warm welcome awaited them.

          " You'd be  the  Maclaren that wrote that book, ' Spirits of
          Parallel"' the landlord  observed  while  they  were  having
          their supper, "  didn't go much on it myself.  Caused a stir
          among the women."

          " It was  Leah's  fault,"  Shaun said with a grin, " she was
          the one who sent it to the publishers."

          " Everyone talks  about  it  from  Shannon  to  Galway," the
          landlady interrupted, " we all reckon it's given us a better
          understanding of Angels,  of  life  when  we  pass  over and

          " There'd be  a bit of old Angus in you Shaun Maclaren," the
          Landlord added, "  I  still say you should have made more of
          our lives and those of the wee leprechauns."

          It was late  when  they  went  upstairs  to  bed.   To their
          surprise there was only one room with a huge canopied bed.

          " There's only  one  room,"  Leah  gasped  when the landlady
          finished stirring the fire and left, closing the door behind

          " They must  have  booked  us in together. I thought I heard
          them call us  Mr  and  Mrs  Maclaren  when we arrived. I can
          always sleep on the floor---in front of the nice warm fire."

          " You'll do  no  such thing Shaun Maclaren," Leah smiled.  "
          It's an enormous bed. Big enough for the two of us."

          They sat for  a  long  time  in  front  of the blazing fire,
          holding  hands,  neither   saying  a  word.   Both  of  them
          wondering what the  next  few  moments, minutes, hours might
          bring. Both of  them frightened, yet not wanting, not daring
          to be afraid.

          Leah withdrew her  hand  from  his  grasp, and when the fire
          suddenly crackled Shaun  turned,  saw her in a blue negligee
          lying in the  middle  of the bed. He he stared at her as she
          lay against the  white  lace-edged pillows.  Now, at last he
          knew that the  strand  of  web,  the thread of love had been
          tried, tested, gained breadth, and would never break.

          After moments of  being  held  in a trance by his eyes. Leah
          became conscious of  his soft gentle hands on her skin. When
          his mouth closed on hers he slid his hand under the negligee
          and eased out  a  soft,  heavy cream breast. He caressed it,
          kissed it, ran  his  tongue  lightly over it's quivering red

          The moment he  stopped  Leah  gave a soft little cry. Caught
          her breath in a sigh and begged him to go on. She closed her
          eyes, cupped his face in her hands, her breasts aching to be
          loved. She felt  his  hands sliding over the lace, exploring
          every part of  her  body.  With a wriggle she was out of her
          negligee and lay motionless in his arms.

          Murmuring low, unintelligible  words  he  moved  an began to
          fondle her breasts.  Holding  them he suckled her, gently at
          first, then firmly, with a greedy insistence.

          " Shaun! Oh Shaun! That's wonderful---unbearable," she cried
          holding his head to her breasts. Lost in the pleasure of his
          soft  drawing lips,  all  conscious  thought  deserted  her.
          Suddenly he stopped.

          She released him.   He  poised  himself  above her, with one
          hand held her wrists to the bed. Leah gasped, tried to reach
          him, and writhed  in frustration when his new manhood grazed
          the inside of her legs.

          " You can see me," he whispered in her ear, " you can't have
          it until I  allow  it."  He  slid  the  other  hand down her

          Leah moaned, pleaded  beneath  him.   "  How can you? Please
          Shaun, now I  need  you  now.  How can you stand it when you
          know I need you?"

          Shaun  ignored her  pleas  for  release,  her  low  moan  of
          pleasure as he  stroked  the  soft  silken  curls  and  warm
          enfolding flesh. Leah  out  of control, writhed beneath him,
          oblivious to all but his hands.

          He recalled the sessions he had with his Physiotherapist who
          had taught him so much about control.

          " Male babies,"  he  told Shaun, " with a few exceptions, as
          they grow develop  male,  sometimes, dominant feelings.  You
          Shaun, having been  born a female is something you will have
          to learn."

          The therapist told  him  that  his  aim  should  be to avoid
          losing control of his body. That this could only be achieved
          by concentrating his thoughts, his mind on his partner.

          He was taught  how to make a woman reach heights of pleasure
          and passion she  may  have  never known, and hopefully would
          never find with  any  other  man.  He learned how to control
          moods.  How  to   change  from  gentle  passion  to  a  wild
          abandonment, then back  to a gentle, lasting love.  To treat
          his new manhood,  his  beautiful, cloned penis as if it were
          no less than  a  God.  Now  as the therapist had told him he
          found it easy  to  read  Leah's  mind. To know her body, her
          needs, for which she longed.

          Shaun loved the  excitement  he was able to summon in Leah's
          warm sensual flesh. To feel her writhing, helplessly beneath
          him, knowing he  had  control. To him it was an achievement,
          something he had wanted all of his life.

          Long before her  sex-reassignment  Leah  had  dreamed  of  a
          romantic bliss. The  memories  of her dreams, unforgettable,
          if only because  they  were  unlikely ever to come true. Now
          Shaun! Her Shaun  was creating a passion that occurred once,
          and then, only in a dream.

          With both hands  she took hold of his manhood. It felt hard,
          silky, warm, yet  soft.  She  stroked  it with gentle loving
          movements, the guided  it inside her as Shaun hung over her,
          his whole being on fire.

          Keeping his weight  on his forearms he stretched out on her,
          moving  rhythmically  in   slow  penetrating  strokes.  Leah
          brought her legs  around  his hips and squealed with delight
          at every rise and fall.

          Shaun knew he  had reached his height, but waited, as he had
          been taught. He  felt  Leah stiffen. With a shudder he moved
          faster and faster inside her as the room rang with the cries
          of their first ever release.

          Clinging to each other they reached heaven, stayed for ever,
          then slowly descended. There was pain.  There was ecstasy, a
          kind  of intoxication.  There  was  delight,  and  a  sudden
          desperate anxiety.

          " We did  it,"  they both cried, amid tears and laughter, as
          they realised they were all right.

          Shaun lay on  top  of  Leah's  limp  body,  his head resting
          between her breasts. Her lips curved in a smile as he drew a
          nipple into his  mouth and teased it with his tongue. Unable
          to resist she slowly rotated her hips.

          This time there  was  no  gentle beginning. He lifted her up
          and thrust deep  inside her with slow insistent strokes. For
          a moment Leah  lay  still,  held  captive by his every move.
          Suddenly she caught  up  the  rhythm, braced her feet on the
          bed and rose to meet every surge of his body.

          Shaun felt his  heart  race, his body jerking involuntary in
          the aftermath of  spent passion. He rolled off Leah and fell
          asleep with a contentment he had never known.

          When her heartbeat settled Leah looked at Shaun, stroked his
          forehead and broke  into a fit of uncontrollable crying. She
          felt suddenly, indescribably  female.  At  last  a  complete
          whole woman.

          Leah awake before  Shaun  in  the  morning felt happy with a
          warm, inner glow.  She  felt  the soft waves of a now gently
          remembered  passion.  The  landlady  brought  in  the  early
          morning tea, laid  the  tray on the bedside table and smiled
          at the animated Leah, still glowing as only physical passion
          can make a woman glow.

          They left Bunratty  and  drove  towards Galway. The strength
          and wildness of timeless Connemara fascinated them. In a pub
          at Clew Bay,  many  of  the Maclaren clan awaited them.  All
          eager to shake  the hand of Shaun, author of 'The Spirits of
          Parallel' grandson of Angus Maclaren.

          Many had tales to tell, most handed down, of the wildness of
          his grandfather, before  leaving  the old country. They were
          taken to a  tumble-down  cottage,  where some said Angus was

          Shaun  saw the  Twelve  Pins,  he  remembered  seeing  in  a
          photograph,  and  felt   that   this  lush  green  land  and
          good-natured people were part of his heritage, and as he sat
          with Leah in  front  of the fire, he wondered if it was this
          land, the land of the Leprechaun that had made him write the