Archive for the ‘Anthology’ Category

Sizzling Saturday Snippet

Halloween Heat II coverBlurb:

It’s Samhain and Brent wants to fulfill Carissa’s fantasy of sex in a bookshop while it’s open. With help from Fletch he’s going to make it a hot, steamy night she’ll never forget.

Carissa only wanted to spend more time with her mate she didn’t know what to expect when they arrived in the mountains to visit his parents. After dressing her as a French maid, him as Highway man and their friend Fletch as Zorro, she’s pretty sure that he’s taken her fantasy to a whole new level.

Samhain has always been a magical time, now it’s about to get a whole lot hotter.

Author Note: This story comes after Dragon Ugly.

 

Buy Links:

Etopia Press

Amazon

B&N

ARe

Kobo

 

Snippet:

“Whoa there, lover,” Carissa called out. “We have time, there’s no rush.”

“He’s just impatient,” Fletch said as he caught up. “Slow down man, I don’t want to look suspicious to the cops.” He nodded his head toward a man dressed as a British Bobby.

Brent grumbled something that Carissa didn’t catch, but she was relieved when he slowed his pace to a relaxed walk. Her muscles ached as she matched his speed. They had been walking over uneven cobblestone, up and down hills, for the last half hour.

“Trying to get me to lose five pounds?” she teased, knowing that wasn’t the case.

“You know I love your curves, honey.” Brent leaned down and pressed a kiss to her cheek. “Sorry for the rush, just wanted to get there as fast as possible in case they changed their mind.”

Fletch laughed. “Fat chance of that, they’ve done this type of thing before. Tor arranged for it last month when he brought Louisa with him on a visit to his parents. So no worries.”

Carissa didn’t comment, she just kept walking. At least she knew that this would be a safe place to fulfill this type of fantasy.

The town around them was dressed in its fall colors, deep reds, bright golds, rich browns and even a few green leaves still decorated the trees. Cinnamon, cloves, pumpkin and incense wove through the cool breeze that brought goose bumps to her bare arms and legs. She tugged at her skirt, wishing it were a little longer and that she’d been allowed to wear stockings. Brent had said that stockings or even thigh highs would have gotten in the way. So she dressed in the costume Brent had provided for her and followed him and Fletch out the door with kisses and winks from Brent’s mom and dad.

“If you wanted to take me on a pleasure tour of your hometown, you couldn’t have done it during the day and allowed me to wear more comfortable shoes?” The five-inch peep toe stilettos weren’t doing her feet any favors on the cobblestone sidewalks.

“Sorry, I should have warned you.” Brent pulled her toward him and gave her a kiss on her temple. “The bookstore is in the more secluded part of town.”

“The Red Light district,” Fletch leered.

“Sex, sex, sex, that’s all you think about,” she teased back.

“Well, when you’ve got a sexy girlfriend like I have, that’s all you can concentrate on.” Brent stopped and pulled her in a for a long slow kiss.

 

Buy Links:

Etopia Press

Amazon

B&N

ARe

Kobo

WOOT! Halloween Heat II Won!

WOOOOT!
Halloween Heat II won Best Menage in Anthology/Short Stories/Quickies!
Thank You to everyone who voted!
Se

Sunday Snippet: Dragons at Samhain

Excerpt Rating (PG-13),
Out Now!
Series: Halloween Heat II: Dragons at Samhain
Genre: Paranormal, Interracial, Ménage
ISBN: 9781937976972

HalloweenHeatParaMenage-200x300Snippet:
The town around them was dressed in its fall colors, deep reds, bright golds, rich browns and even a few green leaves still decorated the trees. Cinnamon, cloves, pumpkin and incense wove through the cool breeze that brought goose bumps to her bare arms and legs. She tugged at her skirt, wishing it were a little longer and that she’d been allowed to wear stockings. Brent had said that stockings or even thigh highs would have gotten in the way. So she dressed in the costume Brent had provided for her and followed him and Fletch out the door with kisses and winks from Brent’s mom and dad.
“If you wanted to take me on a pleasure tour of your hometown, you couldn’t have done it during the day and allowed me to wear more comfortable shoes?” The five-inch peep toe stilettos weren’t doing her feet any favors on the cobblestone sidewalks.
“Sorry, I should have warned you.” Brent pulled her toward him and gave her a kiss on her temple. “The bookstore is in the more secluded part of town.”
“The Red Light district,” Fletch leered.
“Sex, sex, sex, that’s all you think about,” she teased back.
“Well, when you’ve got a sexy girlfriend like I have, that’s all you can concentrate on.” Brent stopped and pulled her in a for a long slow kiss.

Buy Link:
ARe:

https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-halloweenheatii-968881-142.html

Kindle:
http://www.amazon.com/Halloween-Heat-II-ebook/dp/B009MRN9SW/ref=sr_1_6?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1349629128&sr=1-6&keywords=Halloween+Heat

Nook:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/halloween-heat-ii-selena-illyria/1113153000?ean=2940015575736

Red Hot Winter: Triple Dare by Lexxie Couper

Triple Dare

Or, How A Sci-fi Author Dared To Move Beyond The Safe

I started my professional writing life with erotic sci-fi. I grew up watching Dr Who and Star Trek (and my first crush was on Han Solo) so naturally when I decided to write an erotic romance what better sub-genre to explore than sci-fi. Actually, it was?t even as planned as that. I opened a new Word doc and began writing with no real idea of what was going to come out of my brain. Pretty much all my books are written this way, which can be surprisingly fun or frustratingly annoying. My first ever erotic tale was definitely sci-fi.?Shifting Lust is still my best seller at Changeling Press and I have to say, the hero?a brooding, menacing bounty hunter called Raiven a?Tor still has a very special place in my heart.

After that came more sci-fi with elements of paranormal. Then came paranormal all by itself (Savage Retribution,Captive Heat,?Death, The Vamp and His Brother to name a few). Then I went back to visit sci-fi again, this time with fantasy elements (the infamous?The Sun Sword is that book, which only recently came out in print.) followed by some more sci-fi, this time with a foursome unlike any other (Spaceport: R&R). Never in amongst all that did I dream I would ever write a contemporary erotic rom-com. But I did.

Mid 2009,?Mari Carr asked me to be a part of Ellora?s Cave?Tempt the Cougarseries, a strictly non-paranormal, non-sci-fi series. I was as nervous as all hell, but love Mari sooo damn much I couldn?t say no.?Copping A Feel was released August last year and, according to my EC editor (the most fabulous Kelli Collins) it was the best thing I?d ever subbed to her. ?Freaking hilarious? I think was the words she used. Of course, me being me, I didn?t believe her and before I knew it, I was submerged again in the paranormal worlds where wild horny sex happens between non-humans and the fate of the world hangs in the balance (Savage Transformation and Endless Lust).?Savage Transformation was released last September and Endless Lust will be coming soon from Ellora?s Cave. But somewhere in amongst all that timeline, my Samhain Editor, (the most wonderful Heidi Moore) threw down a challenge. Write her a m?nage contemporary erotic romance. And do it in 10 days.

So, I did. I opened a new Word doc, put my fingers on the keys and waited. And a few minutes later I wrote this line?

Joseph Hudson tossed his snowboard aside, threw his goggles over his shoulder and swung a fist at his best mate.

Nine days later, I subbed?Triple Dare, a 25,000 word m/f/m erotic rom-com to Heidi. She loved it. More than loved it. She demanded a sequel.

Triple Dare has become for me the most important release (and the most important dare) of my life. If I hadn?t the courage to say, yeah, I can be funny, I can be normal, I can do contemporary, I never would have written it and, in turn, never discovered a side of my writer?s brain that I really like visiting. A lot.

Which makes me think, how many of us out there are just waiting for someone to say to them?c?mon, I dare you to do it?

Triple Dare

Two men, one woman, one momentous dare.

A Red Hot Winter story.

Serious and determined, Joseph Hudson isn?t Australia?s businessman of the year for nothing. So now he?s asking himself, how did he get lost on the side of a mountain in the Colorado Rockies?in the middle of winter?with night fast approaching? Three simple words. I dare you.

Fear isn?t in Rob Thorton?s vocabulary. Life is for the taking, and Rob uses both hands. Challenging his best mate to take an impromptu snowboarding trip to the U.S. is just the latest in a lifetime of dares. Besides, he has an ulterior motive for the trip. And a plan?

Park Ranger Anna McCarthy knows what trouble looks like, and it?s written all over the two Aussies she first encounters in the ski lodge. Instinct has her following them onto the mountain, and sure enough, they end up needing her winter survival expertise. But not even her skills can stop her body from responding to the sexy muscles she finds beneath their ski suits.

Stuck in a remote cabin until the storm passes, the temperatures rise until all bets are off. And a double dare turns into a triple threat?to their hearts.

Product Warnings

Warning: Contains lots of scorching boy on girl on boy action, a heroine who knows what she wants and two sexy-arsed Australian heroes to really work up a sweat over. Oh, and a soul-deep love story with a revelation that may make you cry.

Excerpt

Joseph crossed the cabin floor in three strides and scooped her off her feet before she could utter a squeal of shocked delight. He held her against his chest, his arms under her knees and back, his nostrils flaring, his stare holding hers captive. ?Right about here.?

He kissed her. Hard. Brutal. His tongue lashing at her lips, her teeth, with a ravenous aggression she reveled in.

?And here,? Rob stated as he fisted a hand in her hair and tore her lips from Joseph?s, crushing her mouth with his.

His kiss was equally forceful but far more playful, and her head spun at the contradiction of one barely contained with power, the other almost teasing. Both however, made her pussy weep with moisture. She whimpered and curled her arms around Joseph?s neck as his lips began to scorch a line up the column of her neck.

?You are so fucking beautiful,? he ground out in her ear.

?Beautiful,? Rob echoed, pulling his lips from hers to taste her chin, her jaw.

Joseph kissed her again, nipping at her bottom lip with a series of bites that grew harder and more uncontrolled with each one. He plunged his tongue into her mouth, exploring its well with increasing fever.

?There?s no bed big enough for this,? Rob spoke, skimming a hand down her back and over the curve of her ass. His fingers stopped at the folds of her pussy, exposed to his touch by her position in Joseph?s arms, ?and the floor?s a might cold, so we?re going to have to worship your body standing up.?

His statement sent a shard of wanton excitement into Anna?s sex and she felt her juices wet Rob?s fingers. Fingers he slowly, deliberately slid into her folds. Two at once, wriggling them until he couldn?t penetrate her any deeper.

She sucked in a breath through her nose, the scent of her pleasure filling her body, driving her faster to an unexpected orgasm.

Oh, God!

Her pussy clamped shut on Rob?s fingers, constricting on them, squeezing them in fast, powerful pulses.

?Oh, yes,? Rob scissored his fingers inside her sex, plunged them in and out and wriggled them some more, ?that?s my girl. Come for me. I want you so fucking wet I could drown in your cream.?

Joseph growled against Anna?s lips at his friend?s words, hauling her closer to his chest as he sucked her tongue into his mouth.

?She?s so wet for us, Hudo.? Rob continued to fuck her pussy with his fingers. ?So very, very wet.?

Joseph broke the kiss and stared into her face. ?I want her wetter.?

Rob chuckled, a low, dirty laugh. ?No worries, mate.?

He slapped her ass. A swift, sharp slap that made her cry out in surprise.

Stinging heat branded her ass cheek, but before the pain could register in Anna?s mind, Joseph pressed his lips to her temple. ?Do you want him to kiss it better??

She nodded, her breath hitching in her throat.

She sensed Rob move beside her, his hand sliding over her butt, caressing the spot he?d smacked until it wasn?t his palm on her skin but his lips.

And then, his lips weren?t on her ass cheek but on her folds, his tongue flicking at her clit, his fingers delving into her slit.

?Does that feel good?? Joseph whispered, his stare holding her still in his arms.

?Yes,? she panted. ?Yes.?

?I want you so wet there?ll be very little pain when Rob enters your arse.?

Her heart slammed into her throat, her rock-hard nipples aching. She gazed into his eyes, knowing she should feel something other than absolute trust and blissful rapture. She didn?t.

Rob?s tongue rolled over her clit, already swollen from her last orgasm, and she hissed in a gasp.

?I can?t hold on much longer, Anna.? Raw tension wrought Joseph?s statement into a strangled groan. ?My dick is so hard and I want to sink it into your pussy so much.?

?Then do it,? she rasped. ?Do it. Please.?

He shook his head. ?Not yet. Not until you are ready for both of us.?

As if Rob knew exactly what Joseph wanted, he placed his hands on her ass cheeks and spread them apart, dragging his tongue from her pussy to her anus. Smearing her hole with his saliva and her cream.

Triple Dare is now available at?http://www.mybookstoreandmore.com/triple-dare-p-6205.html and Amazon Kindle at http://www.amazon.com/Triple-Dare-Winter-Story-ebook/dp/B004HILZDW

Book Trailer:

Red Hot Winter: True Heart by Delilah Devlin

Delilah Devlin is an award-winning author with a rapidly expanding reputation for writing deliciously edgy stories with complex characters. Whether creating dark, erotically-charged paranormal worlds or richly descriptive westerns that ring with authenticity, Delilah Devlin “pens in uncharted territory that will leave the readers breathless and hungering for more…www.DelilahDevlin.com

Two men plus one woman equals three bodies on fire?

True Wyatt’s hands are going to be full enough keeping the herd alive through the dead of winter. The last thing he needs to hear is that his brother Lonny has rented out their isolated hunting cabin to a reclusive writer—especially a sassy, disaster-prone brunette. Who has the time to babysit a city girl until Spring?

With a deadline looming, erotica writer Honey Cahill is looking forward to six distraction-free weeks to finish her next book. However, between Lonny’s flirty sensuality and True’s hard-edged intensity, the Wyatt brothers set the stage of her imagination for a winter of wicked delights.

The fire that destroys the cabin, though, is as real as it gets. Forced to seek a bed under True and Lonny’s roof, the temptation to experiment—all in the name of research, of course—is overpowering. One night in their arms doesn’t feel like enough; it feels like more. Particularly with one cowboy who fires all her cylinders…

Warning: It’s a Devlin ménage—expect men with stamina and not an ounce of mercy to behave like sex gods, and the lucky woman to love every minute of it. A little domination goes a long, long way…

http://www.mybookstoreandmore.com/true-heart-p-6206.html?osCsid=fa37953517aeb2650da41ac75ff78735

When I received the invitation to submit a story for the RED HOT WINTER series, I was excited, but didn’t have a clue what I would write. However, the day the synopsis was due for approval, I sat down and played with character names. The name True came to me out of the ether. The title slipped into my head a second later. Then the brother’s name, Lone. Once TRUE HEART had a name, I had a story. Simple as that. That doesn’t happen often, a story falling out onto the page with little effort, little forethought, but when it happens you don’t let real life get in the way. I wrote the story in under two weeks, and while I was vacationing in Canada last year with a friend. Which was helpful since we traveled through the Canadian Rockies. The location helped me with my high meadow, Colorado setting and the setting helped to form the hard, terse, sexy as hell main character.

Excerpt:
Footsteps scuffing across the porch pulled Honey from her story. She glanced to the clock at the corner of her screen, surprised to discover hours had passed since the brothers had left.
The air inside the cabin was chilly, and she realized she’d let the fire go out. She rose, wincing at the dull ache in her lower back, then strode toward the furnace in the corner of the open room. She pulled the lever to close the flue and opened the door, careful to stand to the side as Lonny had shown her in case flame billowed out at the sudden influx of oxygen.
A knock sounded at the door.
“It’s unlocked,” she shouted, reaching for a log. “Come on in.”
The door swung open. “Let me help you with that,” Lonny said, stepping inside.
Grateful, she straightened, easing her muscles with a quick rub.
Lonny’s brows lowered. He took off his hat and brushed the snow off the brim and his shoulders while he stood on the mat. He tugged off his gloves with his teeth, hung his hat on a peg beside the door then strode toward her. “You forget the fire?”
She wrinkled her nose. “I started working and forgot the time.”
“That’s a good thing, right? For your story?”
“Yeah, means I was in so deep everything else disappeared.”
They stood studying each other’s faces. His expression was watchful, but open. Friendly. And if the quick glance he gave her body before he bent and threw more logs inside the furnace was any indication—he was also interested.
“Did you eat dinner?” she asked, trying to remember how one of her heroines would ask a man to make love to her, but she was out of practice. Dinner was just a stalling tactic.
“Not yet,” he said, closing and latching the door of the furnace. “Wanted to stop by before it got too late.”
Maybe she’d been too subtle. “Do you have time to have a meal with me?”
Lonny’s gaze locked with hers. “The way that snow’s comin’ down, if I stay longer than half an hour, I may as well wait until morning to leave.”
There wasn’t any pressure in the way he said it, but she understood what he was asking. Lonny wanted to spend the night with her.
Just what she’d been fishing for.
Her body, chilled only a moment ago, reacted with a surge of warmth that spread from her breasts up her neck to flood her cheeks. Embarrassed to be blushing like a virgin, she shifted her feet and winced when her lower back throbbed.
He sighed, pulling her attention back. The corners of his eyes wrinkled with good humor. “Tonight’s not a good time for dinner. I better get on down the road. But first, I have something for you to try. Let’s move over toward the light,” he said, aiming his chin at the kitchen table.
They moved toward it. Then he fished in his pocket for a tin, which he unscrewed and held up for her to sniff.
The scent of camphor and something not quite as minty opened her sinuses in an instant. “What’s that for?”
“For your back. It’s a liniment I use on my horse when he’s limping.”
Her eyebrows shot up. “And you want me to do what with that?”
Lonny smiled his wicked, flirty smile and lifted a hand, finger pointed toward the floor. He twirled it.
Honey groaned. “You want to do this standing up?”
“I might get ideas if you insist I do it when you’re stretched out on a bed. ’Sides, my horse never complains when I do it this way.”
Honey laughed then slowly turned to give him her back.
Lonny cleared his throat. “Um…you’ll have to push down your pants a little and lift your shirt.”
“Lord, who turned up the heat in here?” she murmured.
His husky laughter stirred her hair, which told her he stood only inches from her. Standing this close, she caught a whiff of barnyard and mint. She wondered if he’d popped a Tic-Tac before coming inside. She decided she liked his earthy-sweet smells and relaxed.
She unbuckled her belt, undid her jeans and shoved them just past her hips. Then she took a deep breath and pulled up her sweater to bare her midriff.
“Nice dimples.” Then his fingers stroked salve over her lower back, the camphor heating her skin. He set the tin aside. “I’m going to brace your front. Promise I won’t take advantage.”
“Sure,” she whispered.
He placed his large hand over her lower belly. Her breath hitched when his little finger entered the vee of her open pants. But her next breath was a sigh when he pushed the heel of his hand hard against her back, soothing muscles and making her sway. After a few moments, the hand pressed against her front was the only thing holding her up.
He glided and smoothed, working the liniment into abused muscle. Then he gently dug his knuckles into her, which caused her to rise on her toes and her head to dip toward her chest.
“Gettin’ it?” he whispered.
“Mmm-hmm.” Was he ever gettin’ it. Getting her hot, getting her horny.
His hand slowed on her back.
She held her breath, listening to his deepening breaths that fanned against her neck.
The hand in front slipped beneath her open waistband, and then stilled. The warmth of his palm against her vulnerable belly was one of the sexiest sensations she’d felt in a long, long time. She knew he waited to let her make up her mind. She inched apart her feet.
His fingers sank deeper, touching the hair covering her mound. “Bend over. Grab the edge of the table.”
The way he said it, his voice thick and raspy, sent a quiver of lust through her. She bent, gripped the edge while her heart pounded hard against her chest.
The first gentle scrape of callus over her hooded clit made her groan. She bit her lip to hold back more sounds.
“It’s okay to make some noise, you know,” he said, stroking deeper between her folds.
“It’s been so damn long, I’ll sound like a porn queen.”
His chuckle sounded strained. His long fingers swept over her lips, gathering her moisture. One digit thrust into her entrance and swirled. The hand at her back resumed the massage, heel grinding into bruised muscle.
Aroused and soothed, all at once, her body began to quiver.
Honey wished she had the nerve to shove her pants off her bottom, to lift herself higher and beg for his cock, but that would have required her prying her fingers from the table. She gave an agonized groan and lowered her head, resting it on cool wood.
Two fingers stroked inside and she clamped her thighs together, holding him there.
He held still, but then she rocked her hips to fuck them. So wet now, his hand was sliding in slippery honey and he moved easily in and out, his thumb caressing her clit.
“Lone…” she moaned, turning her head, ready to beg him to fuck her.
“This is all you get tonight, sweetheart. Take it. Fly with it.”
An apt description of just what she felt. Her body undulated in sublime heat. The flick of his thumb and thrust of those digits burrowing deeper, sliding faster, had her arousal building, surging…and then she came, shattering happily, her cries broken and aching.
“Sweet,” he whispered, a kiss landing on her cheek as he leaned over her.
She gave a shaky laugh and pushed away from the table. He straightened behind her, pulling his fingers from her pussy. They made a slick trail up her belly.
“I’ll let myself out,” he said softly.
His footsteps moved away, and she zipped her jeans, leaving the ends of her belt dangling as she followed him to the door.
Honey was tempted to ask him to stay. Really tempted, but then she thought about that bottle of scotch and the fact she really didn’t know Lonny all that well. Not yet anyway. “Guess you better go,” she said softly. “But thanks. For…everything.”
Standing next to the door, hat in hand, he turned. “If the power goes out, you won’t have a phone.”
She nodded. “I know.” When he hesitated again, she laughed softly. “I do want that kiss you’re thinking about.”
Lonny’s slow grin was filled with devilment. “Was I that obvious?”
Laughing softly, she stepped closer and tilted back her head. “I haven’t felt this awkward since high school when Donny Mathis walked me to the door, then hemmed and hawed for ten minutes before working up the nerve.”
“Should I be nervous?” he said, moving in, his hands landing on her hips to pull her against him.
When their bellies rubbed, she forgot all about why she shouldn’t want this. The heat in his gaze soothed away her doubts.
His kiss was hot, not so much tongue that she felt like a snake wiggled in her mouth—nice. Very nice. His tongue withdrew, his lips suctioned hers. Then he lifted his head. “Be safe. And don’t forget that stove again. I don’t want you sick.”
She warmed to his concern. “I won’t forget.”
He bent and gave her cheek a quick peck then ducked out the door.
She shut it behind him and leaned against the cold wood, her body still humming from the delicious thrill of their encounter. More than ever, she knew she’d done the right thing getting away from familiar surroundings. Not once while he’d been with her had she felt a twinge of sadness. Maybe she really was ready to move on.

http://www.mybookstoreandmore.com/true-heart-p-6206.html?osCsid=fa37953517aeb2650da41ac75ff78735

Red Hot Winter: Winter Fire by Jess Dee

JESS DEE: WINTER FIRE

Would you believe that writing a novella for the Red Hot Winter Anthology came as a complete surprise for me? I?d seen the call for submissions for the antho, read it over carefully, and instantly dismissed it, deciding Sydney in winter is simply not cold enough to act as an appropriate setting for a novella with this theme.

And then I received a little invitation, asking if I would considering submitting a story. How could I refuse?

😀

I couldn?t. Which brought me to thinking about the coldest place I?d visited in Australia. And the Blue Mountains won hands down.

The first time we visited there had been in the middle of winter. The temperatures were a good ten degrees (Celsius) colder than Sydney, it rained, and it was bloody freezing!

Fortunately for us, we found a lovely, small restaurant, with a roaring fire and lots of yummy hot soup. Can you say romantic?

(Well, it would have been romantic, had we not had a two year old with us, insisting on visiting ever train and train track within a 70 mile vicinity.)

Still, that restaurant was the spark that ignited the setting for Winter Fire.

A quaint mountain village, in the heart of winter? Can you think of anything more romantic? A hotel set here had to be the place where Rachel, Garreth and Jackson?s story played out.

Jess

(The Three Sisters, Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia)

Winter Fire: The Blurb

Guilty pleasures can heat the coldest winter night?

A Red Hot Winter story.

There?s never been any question in Rachel Ashberg?s mind. Jackson Brooks is the one, and they both know it. The problem? Thanks to his unbreakable rule?never date his twin sister?s friends?he?s completely off-limits. Even if they can?t imagine being with anyone else.

It?s been over two years since their last encounter, when they gave in?just once?to their passion. Now, as the Brooks twins? milestone birthday approaches, Rachel and Jackson are about to meet again at a gorgeous mountain resort. Needing something to take the edge off the desire that has never faded, she indulges in a fling with sexy stranger Garreth Halt. He even makes her forget Jackson for a while. Or?maybe not.

When she mentions Jackson?s name in passing, Garreth picks up on all the hidden undertones in her voice. And he brings Jackson into their bed, if only in a fantasy they play out together. Funny thing about Garreth?s fantasies, though. Even the most improbable, impossible ones have a way of becoming reality?

Warning: Enough heat is contained within these pages that you won?t even notice the winter cold. You might fall in love with Jackson?the real-life hero, determined to protect his sister from further pain?but it?s the handsome stranger, Garreth, who?ll take your breath away.

WINTER FIRE: An Excerpt

Jesus Christ and holy fuck. Rachel was aroused. Garreth, the stupid fuck, had pulled her away from the table and fed her some crock of shit. Whatever the bastard had told her had worked.

Rachel?s cheeks were flushed and her nipples poked at the black stretchy top she wore. She looked as though she were about to jump Garreth right there, at the bar.

But she didn?t. Instead she stumbled off her chair and walked away. Headed to??

Jackson didn?t stop to check. Acting on instinct, he got up and followed her.

She rounded a corner, in the direction of the kitchen. And bathrooms. And a door leading out to what had to be the back of the restaurant.

A second before she pushed open the door to the Ladies?, he caught her back against his front and without saying a word, steered her towards the door leading outside.

She gasped and twirled her head to see who?d taken her captive. ?J-Jackson? What on earth??

He didn?t respond. Couldn?t. His blood boiled. Rage ran through his veins. It was one thing that she?d fucked someone else. It was another thing altogether getting aroused by that someone else in front of him.

The scent of rain hung in the air. Icy air ripped the breath from his lungs. It stung his cheeks and made his eyes water. He didn?t care. The second they were outside, he swung Rachel around, pressed her flat against the wall and crushed his mouth to hers.

Holy smoke.

Dear God.

Her lips. Her full, ripe lips. Kissing him back. Pressing against his with the same urgency he felt. They did him in. Stripped away whatever self-control he had left. He swept his tongue inside her mouth, losing himself to her taste.

Twelve years he?d loved her. Twelve years he?d tried to deny himself.

Why? What for?

So she could sleep with Garreth? Fall in love with someone else?

No fucking way. Rachel was his. They?d both known it from the start. They?d both tried to deny it and never succeeded.

And this here was the very reason they?d failed. The passion that flared between them was too real to deny. The love that blazed just refused to be extinguished.

He pressed himself against her, chest to chest, groin to hips, thighs to thighs. His cock, already hard from watching Rachel with Garreth, now ached with repressed desire. He burned for her. Burned for them. Bled for what they should have together?but never could.

Rachel was his. She was born to be with him. He was born to be hers. Distance and time had done nothing to dim that knowledge.

She moaned in his mouth, ground herself against his erection.

Frigid wind sliced over the back of his neck, but holding Rachel in his arms had him so fucking hot he barely felt it.

Something wet touched his lips. Wet and salty.

Tears?

Though it almost killed him, he pulled away from their kiss and rested his forehead against hers, breathing hard. The ache is his groin increased, but he shoved it to the back of his mind. He brushed his thumb against her cheek and found it wet.

?You?re crying.? The knowledge stabbed at his heart.

?We?re resorting to this again?? she asked in a broken voice. ?Stealing kisses out back? Where no one can see??

Christ, this wasn?t what he wanted. It wasn?t what either of them wanted.

With all his heart, Jackson wished he could lift her up and carry her through the restaurant. Carry her openly, for everyone to see. Carry her back to the hotel and into his room. Make love to her without the guilt of knowing he was betraying his sister.

?The way you were looking at Garreth? Fuck, Rach. You?re ripping my heart out.?

?H-how was I looking at him??

He growled low in his throat. ?Like he was breakfast.?

Rachel swallowed audibly before murmuring something so soft he couldn?t hear her. ?What did you say?? he was forced to ask.

?Garreth wants to have a threesome,? she whispered. ?Him, me and you.?

Jackson groaned out loud. He couldn?t fucking believe Garreth had told her. He also couldn?t fucking believe how hard his dick was.

?I-I said no. We couldn?t do that. Not to Jenna.?

Jackson took a very deep breath. ?You said no. But is that what you want??

Rachel didn?t answer. But her shaking body gave her away. Her breasts heaved against him, her nipples torturing his chest.

?You want it, don?t you??

Her breath quickened, but she still didn?t answer.

Something twisted in his chest. ?You want to sleep with him and with me.?

?I do,? she said at last. ?God help me, but I do.?

Fuck, how could more blood fill his dick? There wasn?t space. The pain was excruciating. ?Do?? The words wouldn?t come out. He cleared his throat. ?Do you love him??

She laughed, although the sound was not humorous. ?I hardly know him.?

?You know him well enough.?

?We?ve slept together. I?m attracted to him. I don?t love him.?

?But you want to fuck him. Again.?

She caught her breath then released it with a hiss. ?Yes.?

?Alone? Just you and him??

?No.? There was no hesitation whatsoever in her answer.

?You want me there too??

A soft moan escaped her mouth, as though she?d tried to contain it but couldn?t. ?Yes.?

?You want to fuck me and him at the same time?? He didn?t know if he was angry beyond measure, or aroused beyond control. Probably both.

She shook her head. ?I-I want to fuck Garreth. I want to make love with you.?

?Fuck it!? Frustration swamped him and he slammed his hand against the wall beside her head. ?Fuck, fuck, fuck.?

She cringed. ?I shouldn?t have told you,? she said, instantly contrite. ?I should just have kept my big mouth shut.?

?No!? He shook his head fiercely. ?No secrets between us. Ever. There are enough damned secrets in our lives.?

She wrapped her arms around him, held him close. So close he had no hope of hiding the effect she had on him. He didn?t try.

?I?m sorry, Jackson. So sorry. I wanted so much for this weekend to go smoothly. To pretend nothing had ever happened between us. That we were no more than friends.? She shook her head. ?But I can?t do that. I can?t act like I don?t feel all of these things. Can?t pretend I don?t want to fuck Garreth again. Can?t pretend I don?t want to make love to you. Or that I don?t love you. Because I do. I love you. I am quite hopelessly in love with you.? The tears were back, falling down her cheeks.

???????-

Winter Fire is available now from My Bookstore and More:

http://www.mybookstoreandmore.com/winter-fire-p-6207.html

Book Spotlight: Doms of Dark Haven – Multi-Author Antho

Met Her Match (A Hawkeye Story) by Sierra Cartwright
Genre: BDSM Erotic Contemporary
Series: : Hawkeye; Previous Book: Bend Me Over

Highly trained Mira Araceli can hold her own in the toughest parts of the world, but not, it seems, against her secret crush, Torin Carter. She?d fallen for her Hawkeye instructor years before, and to him, she?d been just another recruit; fresh, green, idealistic.

Torin, with his dark Irish good looks and fierce temper, doesn?t want a partner, any partner, and especially not Mira. But assignments are assignments, and he takes his responsibilities seriously. So when the beautifully submissive Mira crawls into his bedroom, a leather belt between her teeth, he calls on all his resolve to send her away.

Unsatisfied, Mira ups the stakes and finds another dom to play with at Dark Haven. Beyond furious, Torin storms into Master Xavier?s club and claims his rights to dominate Mira. For the first time in her life, she?s met her match.

Educating Evangeline by Belinda McBride
Genre: BDSM Shape-shifter Paranormal

This isn?t what she came here for!

Pursued by a group of mysterious hunters, Evangeline Jones was desperate for sanctuary when she ducked into the doorway of Dark Haven. Instead of safety, she discovers a decadent, sensual world that challenges her very outlook on life.

Harte Sommers is charmed by the little wolf with the pink streak in her ebony hair. As alpha of the Napa pack, he sometimes feels that he?s alone at the top. When he meets Eva, he knows he might not be able to keep his wild little wolf at his side, but his heart tells him that his lonely days might be at an end.

Simon Says: Mine by Cherise Sinclair
Genre: BDSM Erotic Contemporary
Related Title: Master of the Mountain

With an empty nest and divorce in hand, Rona decides it?s time to explore the fantasies that nourished her through a long, tedious marriage to a man whose idea of outrageous sex was leaving the lights on. At the top of her fantasy list is touring Dark Haven, the BDSM club, but she isn?t prepared for the effect of a powerful Dom. When Master Simon takes control and introduces her to toys and sensations she?s never felt before, she realizes he could fulfil every fantasy on her list all by himself. But she?s vowed to never get trapped in a relationship again.

One of the most popular Doms in Dark Haven, Master Simon has had his fill of eager, shallow, young subs. Rona is older, intelligent, independent…and sweetly submissive. After an evening of intense pleasure and despite her obvious attraction, she refuses to see him again. He needs a way to change her mind. She?s not the first sub he?s taken on a journey of exploration, but he?s beginning to think she might be the last.

Publisher’s Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: Anal play/intercourse, strong BDSM theme and elements to include exhibitionism and voyeurism.

Buy Link:
http://www.loose-id.com/Doms-of-Dark-Haven.aspx

Excerpts:
An Excerpt from Sierra Cartwright’s Met Her Match (A Hawkeye Story)

Torin Carter snarled and pushed his way through the crowd.

Three weeks ago he?d been assigned a partner he didn?t want: Mira Araceli.

Despite the fact he didn?t want to be teamed with anyone, especially a female, Torin believed in rules, and he was inflexible in his adherence to them.

If Hawkeye, in his infinite wisdom, had decided Torin and the so-sexy-he-was-going-to combust Mira were stuck together, they were stuck together. And that meant he had to keep his legendary libido in check. He?d been doing okay, that was until Mira had shed her clothes and exposed her pretty little ass and freshly shaved pussy to him two nights ago.

He curled his right hand into a fist when he finally found her.

His partner was strapped over a spanking bench, her long, Victorian-style gown and a stupid number of layers of ruffled lace were tossed over her waist. Not only were her delectable, round butt cheeks completely exposed, but she was being flogged by Blake Miller. Thank God she had on a very modern thong; otherwise he would have had no control of his fraying temper.

Torin had nothing personal against the puny man — well, besides the fact he was wielding a leather flogger that was turning Mira?s butt pink.

He?d only seen Mira?s naked rear once. Because her body aroused him so much, it had taken him less than thirty seconds to jack off after he?d tossed her out of his bedroom.

Blake caught her full on with the flogger, and her hips swayed from side to side. Little vixen obviously loved getting spanked.

His momentary relief at actually finding her faded and became a torch of anger directed as much at Blake as at her.

Right now Torin Carter was a dangerous man.

?Only five more, pet,? Blake said. He drew back his arm again and soundly smacked Mira with the leather straps.

Mira rose up as much as the restraints allowed, and arched her back.

Even from a few feet away, Torin had heard the difference in the intensity of the stroke. Blake was taking Mira to more extreme pain levels. From her reaction, the blow had clearly stung as it was meant to.

Fury overcame reason.

Through the years, he?d played with dozens of women, most of them at this club. He?d enjoyed showing up and having a new woman kneel at his feet each time. But this was different. This was Mira.

Despite Dark Haven?s rules, despite the fact his partner was obviously a willing participant, Torin acted.

He grabbed the smaller man?s wrist. If Torin exerted a bit more downward pressure, the man would be on his knees. Still more and the bones in Miller?s wrist would snap. Part of Torin wished the other man would give him the excuse. ?Playtime?s over, Blake.?

Mira obviously recognized the sound of his voice, and she froze, becoming silent and still. Smartest thing she?d done today. Today? Make that in the past three weeks.

Torin glanced at the gathering crowd. There were plenty of doms and subs captivated by the scene he was creating. Waiters and waitresses continued on their rounds, too highly trained to stop and gawk. A dungeon monitor stopped nearby, his arms folded across his chest.

Everyone but Torin was dressed for the evening?s Charles Dickens theme. In his fury, he?d stormed past Destiny at the door. Bad-mannered, ill-tempered bastard that he was, he?d ignored the club?s theme night and Destiny?s protests that he couldn?t come inside. He?d cut the receptionist, in her revealing and attractive purple formal wear, a quick don?t-fuck-with-me smile. She?d set her mouth in a frown that showed off her lip piercing perfectly.

Now, deep inside the caverns of Dark Haven, he realized he looked completely out of place. Instead of a fancy frock coat, he was wearing jeans, uncivilized boots, and a brown leather bomber jacket. Not that he cared.

His focus was totally on the immobile woman strapped to the spanking bench. ?Move along, boys and girls,? he said to the doms and the couple of dommes who were still staring.

?Trouble??

Xavier, legendary owner of San Francisco?s Dark Haven dungeon, calmly walked over; the crowd parted to let him through.

?Carter interrupted my scene.? Blake all but sputtered the words as he struggled to pull away.

After flicking a nonexistent speck of dirt from his elegant black frock coat, Xavier studied Torin. ?By ?Carter,? you mean Master Torin?? Xavier asked, maintaining decorum. Despite the tension, no matter what kind of tension, Xavier never raised his voice. Trouble in the club was handled professionally, defused by the power of the man?s mystery and magnetism.

Torin struggled to maintain his own composure. He was accustomed to being in charge, alpha even in a pack of alphas. But here, Xavier was law. Torin met the more controlled man?s eyes.

Blake — Torin wasn?t one to extend the courtesy of addressing the man as Master Blake, no matter what Xavier insisted — had to tip back his head to look at them both.

?The woman Blake?s beating –?

?Sub,? Blake interrupted. ?At Dark Haven, she?s a sub.?

?The woman,? Torin corrected, tightening his grip inexorably, ?is my partner. As such, she is under my care and protection.? More than anyone, Xavier would understand what that meant.

?Fine job you?re doing of taking care of her,? Blake said.

Torin exerted a bit more pressure. The other man paled.

?No one, no one, but me touches her,? Torin said.

Mira struggled against her bonds and made tiny mewing sounds. Since she wasn?t shooting off her mouth, she was obviously gagged. At least that was one smart thing Blake had done. Gagging the unruly Ms. Araceli was a supremely good idea. Torin should have done it weeks ago.

With his left hand, Torin flipped the material of her dress back down, covering her ass. Even though she was wearing a scrap for panties, he could tell she was dripping with arousal. Dear God, he couldn?t wait to get her alone.

?Maybe we should ask the sub what she wants,? Blake said.

?Excellent idea,? Xavier said.

Torin disagreed. Asking her anything was a bad idea. God only knew what she?d say when that gag came out of her mouth.

He hoped, for both their sakes, that she was as intelligent as he believed. If not, trouble was already on slow boil.

Xavier waved over the young blond dungeon monitor.

With a nod to acknowledge the order, the man moved toward Mira.

Torin struggled against the instinctive caveman act. He wanted to be the one to detach her from the bondage. He wanted to toss her over his shoulder, drag her back to the safety and seclusion of the Hawkeye house where they were training together then he would soundly beat her himself.

She?d been asking for it since they?d become partners.

Torin realized it was partially his fault she was here in the first place. But damn it, he?d had no idea how serious she was about getting her desires met.

Having no choice at this point but to follow Dark Haven?s protocol, he watched as the dungeon monitor systematically unhooked the clips that held her firmly against the leather spanking bench.

?Master Torin, you can release Master Blake,? Xavier said. His tone brooked no disagreement.

Reluctantly Torin loosened his grip. ?Drop the flogger,? he told Blake.

?I –?

?If you don?t,? he said with a quick smile, ?you?re giving me a reason to break your wrist.?

Elegant, calm, in control, Xavier nodded toward another dungeon monitor. The man moved in and extended a hand toward Blake. The dom glared at Torin before turning over the flogger.

?Now release Master Blake,? Xavier said to Torin, his tone still not wavering.

Slowly Torin followed instructions.

Blake rubbed his bruised skin. Torin had a moment of regret that the man?s wrist was still functional.

The dungeon monitor helped Mira from the bench and held on to her arm for a few seconds, obviously giving her time to catch her bearings and get her circulation back. Torin scowled. He?d meant it when he said he didn?t want anyone touching her.

For a second she looked at Torin. Her brown eyes were wide, focused on him. She blinked, and then, seeming to recognize her error in staring at him, she dropped her gaze.

Jesus God.

What the hell had he been thinking in not making her submit?

The little sub had begged him to flog her. More than begged she?d also cajoled. And when that had failed, she?d, in her charming way, even demanded, trying to goad him.

He preferred to play with superbly trained subs he might or might not ever see again. He?d never had an exclusive relationship with a sub, had never collared a woman. In his line of work, being moved around the country or planet depending on Hawkeye?s needs, it had never seemed prudent. He?d never even been tempted.

He?d never played with a colleague either.

He had rules. Rules were rigid. They kept the world in order.

Still, two nights ago, she?d gone as far as to crawl into his bedroom completely naked, his leather belt held delicately in her mouth. He?d drawn on his adherence to rules — well, rules and the mental reserves developed from a lifetime of studying martial arts — to send her away and lock his door.

The dungeon monitor secured her hands behind her back and then exerted pressure on her shoulders so that she knelt before them.

?Take out the gag,? Xavier said.

Shit.

The dungeon monitor unbuckled the gag and slowly drew it away. She swallowed several times, and Torin couldn?t take his gaze off her. Mira was as lovely as she was determined.

Her long black hair was pinned back in Victorian fashion, and a few tendrils had escaped their confines. The strands curved alluringly across her cheeks and at her nape.

Her gown was cut fairly low, in a way he was pretty damn sure would have been scandalous when Queen Victoria had sat on the British throne. The style of Mira?s dress emphasized the alluring swell of her breasts. Her exposed skin had a lovely olive tone that spoke of her Spanish heritage.

On her knees, her head bowed, she was exquisite. And he was nearly undone.

?You are??? Xavier asked, looking at Mira.

?Mira Araceli, Sir.?

?My Liege,? Torin corrected. ?You will address Master Xavier as ?my Liege.??

She looked up at him, then instantly back down. In front of everyone, he?d corrected her, and he knew she hadn?t missed the fact he was establishing even more firmly his dominance over her.

?Yes, Sir,? she said without a hint of her customary defiance.

?Now answer Master Xavier?s question.?

?My name?s Mira Araceli, my Liege,? she said softly, more softly than he?d ever heard her speak.

The complete contradiction to the Mira Araceli he knew stunned him. Even when she?d crawled into his bedroom, she?d taken the lead, and that?s what he expected from her. Hawkeye didn?t waste his time hiring women, or men, who weren?t leaders, who weren?t resourceful. In addition to providing personal security services to the rich and famous, Hawkeye, Inc. employees operated in the world?s most hostile environments.

Mira had passed the Hawkeye screening process, and Torin had taken the time to read her personnel file along with every report she?d written. She?d been in the Middle East, and she and her client had been the only survivors of a gun battle. She knew how to remain levelheaded in stressful situations; she knew how to handle herself. So this?

And why the hell hadn?t he recognized her true submissive nature?

He?d thought she was likely a masochist. That wouldn?t have shocked him. In their line of work, raw, nasty, gritty hook-ups were common, a way to celebrate being alive, a way to remind themselves they were still human.

Most of the personal security agents he knew were adrenaline junkies. Some drove too fast or burned through the gears on a crotch rocket; others signed up for extended tours and crawled through jungles or endured a mouthful of one-hundred-ten-degree sand. A handful he knew enjoyed sadomasochism; it was another way to fuel the fire.

He?d heard that the infamous Ms. Inamorata, Hawkeye?s right-hand woman, even dabbled in the world of BDSM. He wasn?t sure he believed the rumor, and even if it were true, he had no idea which side she would be on. The woman was tough enough to chew nails. He could picture her as a domme with tall, spiky stiletto heels. He couldn?t see her as a sub, but then again he?d never pictured Mira as a sub either.

Xavier spoke, cutting into Torin?s thoughts. ?I take it, Ms. Araceli, that you were willingly engaged in a scene with Master Blake??

Torin snapped his back teeth together. Dark Haven might be Xavier?s club, but Mira was Torin?s partner. ?Xavier –?

She interrupted Torin?s protest, saying, ?Yes, my Liege.?

Fuck a goat, the woman had just given Torin another reason to punish her.

She continued either not recognizing or, more likely, ignoring Torin?s clenched jaw.

?My Liege, I approached Master Blake when I arrived. He made certain to ask if I was alone.?

?Goddamn it!?

Xavier raised a hand to silence him. ?Master Torin states you?re under his protection.?

Even on the best of days, Torin didn?t keep his temper under tight control. As it was, he figured he had another, oh, forty-five seconds of patience left. A minute, tops.

?Ms. Araceli?? Xavier prompted.

?Well??

?A yes or no will suffice, Ms. Araceli.?

? Sierra Cartwright, May 2010
All Rights Reserved

An Excerpt from Belinda McBride’s Educating Evangeline

DARK HAVEN.

The sign was small and subtle just over the door of an inconspicuous building. After blocks of running, Eva had merged into a large group of men and women who wore Victorian attire like hers. It didn?t look like a private party, so she followed them inside the club, praying she?d find her haven from the hunters who were just blocks away.

The group moved quickly inside, clearly accustomed to the place.

?Do you have a membership??

She blinked, looking down at the cute?and scantily dressed receptionist. Eva cleared her throat. ?Uh?no?? The girl?s breasts were clearly visible through the Goth-inspired Victorian outfit that she was barely wearing. The girl smiled, and a diamond winked like a brilliant beauty mark over the side of her upper lip.

Gotta love San Francisco.

?That?s okay. Is this your first time at Dark Haven??

Eva nodded, brushing a loose strand of hair from her face with a gloved hand.

?No problem, then. Membership is five dollars, plus tonight?s entry fee. Just fill out the paperwork. By the way, my name?s Destiny.?

Somehow she doubted that was really the receptionist?s name, but heck, her name wasn?t her own either. She paid and then scribbled a false name and address on the form, grateful that they weren?t checking IDs.

Eva looked around the dark little reception area. The place was clearly a club, most likely a dance club. Music reverberated through the walls. She heard muffled laughter, and the occasional woman?s squeal punctuated the air. A bulletin board on the wall held flyers for alternate-lifestyle events in the area. Eva?s stomach sank. Was she in a sex club? She looked back at Destiny.

?Restrooms and lockers are to the right. If you have any questions, look for a staff member; the DMs have bandannas on their left arms.?

Eva decided to skip the ladies? room. There was no doubt that the people following her would venture into the club soon enough. She didn?t need to get cornered in a toilet. Hesitantly she stepped through the curtains and into the main room of the club.

Immediately she was assailed by the pungent mix of sweat, alcohol, perfume, and sex. Lots of sex. Adrenaline and the bite of fear saturated the air.

Her skin prickled; phantom hackles rose in panic. She blinked, trying to focus on the room and the myriad of possible dangers within. A woman?s scream carried faintly from downstairs, and Eva?s wolf growled. Blindly she turned to run, to escape. She found herself surrounded by people moving into the club and nearly staggered to the floor. A hand steadied her elbow; another patted her rump. She jumped away, barely hearing their laughter.

Run! The wolf whirled and spun in panic.

Just yards away, a woman was lying prone over a man?s lap. Her skirts and petticoats were pulled up, leaving her bottom bare. With a crack, he slapped her ass bare handed. A strangled cry left Eva?s throat. Against another wall, a naked man was suspended from chains that dangled from the ceiling. A collar circled his throat, and a complicated ring held his penis upright.

She whimpered.

Bodies in ruffles and frills and frock coats milled around tables. Some danced, and some leaned together in intimate conversation. The civilized behavior was a paper-thin veneer over the raw lust that drenched the atmosphere.

Too much. The sensory overload was too much. She tried to make a run for the door and slammed into a broad expanse of velvet and silk and man and the most wonderful fragrance in the world. He was sandalwood and vanilla and something she couldn?t define.

Eva screamed, and her scream was echoed by that of the woman who was being spanked.

She screamed again.

Hands gripped her upper arms, and she began to struggle; her feet were caught up in the long, trailing skirts of her dress. A booted toe connected with a shin.

?Damn! Take it easy, sweetheart!?

?Sorry! Stop! I need to go!? She twisted in his grip.

Strong hands lifted her clear off the floor. ?Sweetie, look up at me. Now!?

His voice was deep and compelling, and it cut through her panic. She shook her head, doing her best to bring herself back under control. For a moment — just a moment — she rested her forehead on his chest, inhaling deeply. The yummy scent of the man helped distract her from the surrounding chaos. Eva?s entire body reacted to that fragrance. To her great humiliation, she was growing aroused and wet. She blinked hard and looked up into his face. His beautiful face.

?Now that I have your attention, can I help you?? His nostrils flared. He leaned a bit closer, his face coming dangerously close to her throat. She whined in panic. And then she bared her throat in surrender.

What the fuck did she do that for?

?You?re scared witless. Follow me.? He lowered her to the ground and turned away, clearly expecting to be obeyed.

On trembling legs, Eva followed the stranger until they reached a little room that opened into one of the walls. As soon as the door closed, the music muted, and the scents faded to a tolerable level. She panted, fighting down the panic that still played at the edges of her consciousness. Gazing around, she gulped. The room was the exact duplicate of a police interrogation room.

She knew; she?d seen the inside of those a time or two.

?This is a bondage club.? He looked serious, but she could see he was stifling a smile. It was there in a dimple that flashed in his cheek.

?Thank you. I think I just figured that out,? she said wryly. Good God. Of all the doors she could have ducked into, she?d chosen a bondage club?s.

The man gave her space, taking a seat on a battered table that dominated the center of the room. She couldn?t miss the chains and shackles that were conveniently anchored to the floor.

?It?s all for play here. Adult play, but still, everyone?s here because they want to be.?

Eva bit her lip and glanced away from him. He was tall. Of course, everyone was tall compared to Eva, but this man would be tall next to most people. His wide shoulders were clad in a precisely tailored Victorian suit in dark coffee brown. His lush, wavy hair was the same color. A waistcoat of gold and green brocade winked out at her. The colors of the waistcoat matched his hazel eyes. He was handsome enough to immediately put her defenses up. His cheekbones were sculpted; his nose, straight and slender. His lips were just short of being full and were beautifully shaped.

In Eva?s experience, the pretty men were usually pretty damn worthless.

But the way he smelled?

?I know what the club is all about. I don?t have a problem with what goes on here.? Eva had plenty of knowledge about the scene; it was the surroundings that gave her problems. The place crushed the breath from her body. She shivered in delayed reaction. She wasn?t shivering because of the presence of this much-too-handsome man. Hell, maybe she was.

?Why don?t you tell me what you?re doing here at Dark Haven? You?re dressed for tonight?s theme. Did someone pull a prank on you??

She faltered, glancing away. How to explain her situation? She opted for the truth. He probably wouldn?t believe it anyway.

?I was being followed. They were waiting for me outside where I work. I saw some people coming in here, so I followed them.?

His casual posture suddenly looked alert. ?Followed? Who was following you??

He didn?t ask why. There were many reasons a woman would be followed in the city, and none of them were good.

?I don?t know. Some men. Maybe three. I managed to shake them for a few minutes.?

She gathered her courage, deciding to trust him.

?One was following me by scent.?

?Shit.? He?d gone white. ?Abraxas is in San Francisco.?

?I didn?t know that?s what they?re called. But I thought I?d lost them a few years ago. I thought I was safe here.? Tears prickled her eyes, but she would not have welcomed his comfort. He was too strange, too male. She breathed deeply, calling up her female pride.

?Now I?ve led them to you.?

?You?ve led them to my pack. Several of us are here tonight. Patrice wanted to come for the Dickens thing.? He looked at her speculatively. ?They won?t be looking for us, so their tracker won?t fixate on anything but you.?

Eva took a breath. ?I should go, then. I know this city. I can lose them down in Chinatown.?

?No, we can hide you here. Right under their noses.? His eyes took on an eerie glow. Immediately Eva stifled an impulse to retreat. As a general rule, she never let others decide her actions or dictate to her. But this man was an alpha; her wolf could sense it. He?d switched from Good Samaritan to predator right before her eyes. She?d rarely encountered other shifters in her life, and she?d never met an alpha before. He was a complication she didn?t need right now.

?How?? She swallowed. Her voice was just a whisper. He was examining her, his bright gaze lingering on her stocking-clad legs and then moving up her body. She should take offense at his rude behavior. Instead she felt wobbly — weak.

?Remove the cloak.?

She raised her chin at the command. He held her gaze, backing her down, and she looked away.

Eva reached up and untied the bow at her throat. The heavy velvet cloak slipped to the floor and puddled around her feet in a crimson pool. She stood impatiently as he evaluated her.

?There. If they get a look at you now, they won?t recognize you at all.? His gaze now wandered her figure. ?Corsets are generally worn under the dress.? He was hiding his smile again, and that seductive fragrance filled the air. Eva shifted, mortified at the arousal that pulled low at her belly. She?d never reacted to a man before — not like this.

?I worked at a corset booth at the Dickens Faire today. This is how we display the merchandise. The corsets?? Eva trailed off; her voice was thick and husky. When she peeked up at the alpha, he was staring at her with frightening intensity. She didn?t glance down, aware of how the snug lingerie pushed up her ample breasts so that they strained against the pink silk of her blouse. Her deep purple skirts flared out from beneath the lacy pink edge of the corset. Her stockings were held up by frilly lace garter belts that attached to the corset. Her clothing had seemed fun and silly when she?d put it on. Now she wanted to strip, to bare her skin for the alpha.

He straightened, approached her, and then walked slowly around her in a circle. He reached out and stroked a strand of hair that curled next to her cheek.

She growled at his presumption. He ignored her anger.

?It?s your scent that?s going to be the problem. And there?s one obvious solution to that tonight.? He came to a halt in front of her, just inches away. Eva had to look up to see his face.

?And what?s that??

He looked at her intently, as though evaluating her worth. ?Do you want me to help you??

His voice had dropped to a whisper, and behind his eyes, the wolf was rising fast and hard. Her wolf reacted, causing the hair on her arms to stand up. She clenched her hands, fighting off the urge to flee — or to roll on the floor at his feet. She glanced at the door, wondering if she could make it before he caught her. She looked up at him again.

?What does your help consist of??

He stared at her steadily. ?Do you want my help? They could be here in the next minute. Think fast.?

?Yes! I want help? But what do you want in return??

For a painfully long moment he didn?t answer.

?If I help you, I will keep you hidden from these people. Plus, I will teach you things that your alpha would have taught you if you had one.? He reached out and clasped her chin between a thumb and finger. ?I?ll bet you can?t even identify them by scent, can you??

She glared but had to be honest. ?No.?

?How did you know they were stalking you?? His index finger was stroking her skin slowly.

?I don?t know. I just did. Sixth sense, maybe.?

?No such thing among our kind.?

He let go of her chin and ran a finger over her cheek. She did her best not to flinch away.

?I will help you. I will teach you, but you must obey me without question. Do you understand??

?In here? In the club??

There was a light knock on the door. Neither looked in its direction. His thumb dragged over her lower lip, coming away with the sparkle of her lip gloss. He carried his thumb to his mouth and tasted the sweet gloss. She shivered and felt a tug of arousal at her belly. Her nipples went hard, and he was gazing at them, which made her skin go hot. She knew exactly what he wanted from her. Her body was intrigued, but was she willing? Would her wolf submit?

Her gaze boldly dropped to his groin, but his formal coat was buttoned closed. It didn?t matter; she?d suddenly identified that delicious fragrance. It was his arousal. She didn?t fool herself. It wasn?t her; it was the situation that had him excited. He probably went hot with arousal the moment he walked in the door of a place like Dark Haven. Now he was getting off on her fear and the possibility of her surrender to him. He was a dom, and she was fresh meat.

?I?m not into this stuff. I don?t like pain. Being helpless? Let?s just say it taps into my fight-or-flight response. That could make me shift.?

?Don?t worry. I won?t let that happen. And we won?t do anything that you don?t want to do. Those are the rules.?

It seemed to Eva that he was making up his own rules as he went along.

The door opened and then settled closed again.

?That was a dungeon monitor. They make sure that nothing gets out of control. They?re very responsible here.?

?How will my posing as your sub tonight protect me??

?You won?t be posing. And it will help you because your scent will be lost in here. They might know that you?re in the building, but they won?t be able to pick you out. Plus, as I mentioned, I?ll teach you.?

?What? What will you teach me??

He stepped back, drawing out of her space. Immediately she felt cold.

?I?ll teach you survival skills. I?ll teach you not only to hide, but to use all your senses. If you?re very good, I?ll teach you to hunt.

?Tonight? All that in one night?? She forced a skeptical smile.

?If you behave. If you do everything I tell you to do.? He was back at the table, leaning casually against it. All the sexual pressure had receded like an invisible wave. He wasn?t going to coax her anymore. She had to push back a smile. He?d come on like a tidal wave and was now pulling back, denying her of his presence. He was flirting.

?If you want, you can meet a couple of members of my pack later. I can put you in touch with others like us. You won?t have to be alone anymore.?

?How do you know I?m alone??

He grinned, causing her heart to stutter. ?I know a lone wolf when I see one.? He paused, letting her think about that. ?I like lone wolves. They?re always tougher at the core than those of us who?ve been raised in a pack. Always willing to take a risk. And when they find their place in a pack, they place a higher value on it.?

She wasn?t ready, not yet. Not for a pack, but especially not for him. Her heart pounded. If she said yes, her entire life would be altered this night. If she said yes? Her gaze dropped to the shackles. How could she submit? It went against every fiber of her being! Desperately, she changed the subject.

?Who are they??

?Abraxas??

She nodded. The name was familiar. It was probably the name she?d heard her mother speak of all those years ago.

?On the surface, they?re a legitimate international company that deals primarily in medical research. Unfortunately they actually exist to do research on us and on others who are different. From what I?ve heard from the new Truckee alpha, they?re trying to bioengineer soldiers with various paranormal skills. They?ve got hidden labs all over the world.?

Eva looked away from the alpha, not willing for him to see the impact that information had on her. Those people had taken her mother. God only knew what they?d done to her and what they planned to do to Eva once they caught her. If they caught her. She clenched her hands, anger trumping any grief that she felt. All those years ago, she?d been a helpless kid. She?d sworn vengeance for her mother but known that it was a vengeance she?d probably never see. Now she had a name? Abraxas.

?How long have you been able to shift?? His voice was soft but firm.

Eva blinked quickly, gaining control of her emotions. ?A couple of years. I lived up in the park, and one night I woke up trapped in my sleeping bag. I remember being surprised that I could see so well in the darkness.?

?That means you?re sexually mature. They want females of childbearing age.?

That meant they would never stop hunting her. As long as she was alone, she was a target. She needed every tool, every weapon that this alpha could give her. It would be worth any price that she had to pay.

Eva looked at the stranger, and oddly, he didn?t seem unfamiliar anymore. His scent was embedded in her brain. She knew every plane of his face. If she let her imagination run free, she could picture the hard brown body under the suit. His wolf was dark brown; its eyes, molten gold. Her fingers tickled with the feel of his fur under her hand. He would be swift?

?What?s your name?? If she was going to submit to a stranger, she should at least know that much about him.

?Harte Sommers.? He reached out and offered his hand. She had to move to him to shake it. He was certainly a manipulative bastard! Yet his hand was warm and strong, and he didn?t let go.

?Evangeline Jones. Call me Eva.?

?Jones?? He quirked a brow, smiling slightly.

No, that wasn?t her real last name. She?d left it behind when her mother had been taken. There were plenty of Joneses listed in the phone book. Details like that slowed down the hunters.

She looked down at where their hands joined; his skin was the warm brown of someone with genetics other than Anglo. Her skin was the lily-white of Ireland and Scotland. Someday she hoped she could find her missing family and learn exactly who she really was. For now, she was Eva Jones.

She looked at Harte, awaiting his instructions. Her jaw was so tight it ached. Submission went against her nature; Eva had no illusions about that. But for tonight, she would bend.

She saw a flare of triumph in his eyes, and the stirrings of hunger laced his scent. Again her body responded to his. He already knew her answer. He pulled her to stand in front of him. They were so close she could feel heat rising from his body.

?Yes or no, Eva??

Back to that. Could she really submit to this man? Granted, he was an alpha, but hell, Eva had always had issues with authority. While she?d never returned to school once her mother had disappeared, she?d attained an education of sorts, haunting libraries and slipping into the shadows in university lecture halls. For years she?d studied kendo under a noted fight-master. Unlike the other students, she?d never called the man ?sensei,? in spite of her great respect for him.

If this man wanted her to call him ?Master,? could she do it?

?Yes.?

That was all she needed to say. The rest would follow. If he truly could teach her to survive on her own, then it would be worth the humiliation.

?Tonight you will begin to learn two sets of rules. The first are the rules of this world, the behavior of a submissive toward her dominant.?

Eva nodded. She hadn?t lived in San Francisco without learning about the alternate lifestyles that flourished here.

?The second set of rules is more important to you — to us. It is the protocol of the wolf pack. Much of that is already imprinted on your genes.? She glanced at him and then glanced away.

?See? You avoid holding my gaze because I?m dominant to you, as you will be dominant to some. Your head is turned away slightly. Doing so opens your throat to me. Do you understand what that means??

She fought the impulse to back away. ?It means I?m offering my throat — my jugular.?

?Would you do that if your wolf didn?t trust me??

The floor nearly opened under her feet at that revelation. Her heart raced, and the hairs on her neck rose. ?If the wolf didn?t trust you, I?d not give you my throat. I?d never look away.?

He nodded in approval. ?Back to the rules out there. While you are my submissive, you will keep your eyes cast down. Don?t speak unless you are spoken to. If you wish to speak to me, call me ?Master.??

Her jaw tightened.

?That one doesn?t work for you??

Wordlessly, she shook her head.

?Sir, then.?

Sir. That, she could do. She did it in the store all the time. Eva nodded, keeping her gaze averted. It seemed he was willing to be flexible.

?When I introduce you to other dominants, you will formally address them as ?Master? or ?Mistress.? Save for my pack and a few select others, I won?t introduce you to submissives.?

He folded his arms. The dark frock coat pulled tightly across his arms and shoulders. Once again she was unable to hold his gaze.

?You aren?t a complete stranger to this world, are you? You?ve been curious enough to do a little research.?

Her cheeks flushed in embarrassment. ?I make corsets for a living. I have to know a little about fetish.?

?Good. That will make things easier.? He reached out and ran his thumb over her bottom lip again and then slipped it inside her mouth. Eva froze, feeling the tip of his digit hook over her bottom teeth. Confused as to how to react, she remained perfectly still. Using his thumb as a hook, he pulled her closer.

?Now, Eva, we begin your education. The first thing you will do is remove your clothing.? He smiled, seeing rebellion cross her expression. He slipped his thumb from her mouth and stood back, a wicked smile on his face.

?All of it. But leave the corset and thong. Stockings and boots too. I like those.?

She took a deep breath and reluctantly began to disrobe. She growled softly the entire time.

? Belinda McBride, May 2010
All Rights Reserved

An Excerpt from Cherise Sinclair’s Simon Says: Mine

Someone should lock me up in the psych unit. Rona McGregor sucked in a breath of cool night air. Visiting a BDSM club held third place on her fantasy list, but she?d decided to take it out of order. Just this once. With an eager smile and her heart pounding, she lifted her ankle-length skirt and shoved open the door to the notorious San Francisco club named Dark Haven.

She hadn?t done anything remotely adventurous in the last twenty years, but her time for insanity had finally arrived. Her children were in college. No husband anymore — thank you, God. She?d lost weight — she glanced down at her very full bodice — well, some weight. But truly, she didn?t look too bad for a woman on the downslide to forty.

Rather than the den of sin Rona had expected, the small entry was dismally bland. A handful of people, also dressed in nineteenth-century clothing, stood in line to give their entrance fees to the woman behind the desk. A few minutes later Rona reached the front.

The perky young woman beamed at her. ?Hi. Welcome to Dark Haven?s Victorian night. Members sign in here.? The receptionist?s purple gown matched the streaks in her spiked hair. She?d apparently ripped out the bodice, leaving only pink netting over her breasts.

Rona suppressed a snort of laughter. Maybe the place wasn?t all that bland. After her years as a nurse, bare breasts didn?t unsettle her, but she?d never seen any quite so vividly displayed before. ?I?m not a member.?

?No problem. Oh, hey, I love your outfit. Major authentic. Did you go to the Dickens Faire at the Cow Palace today??

Rona nodded. ?That?s where I found out about this theme night.? And it had seemed like a sign from heaven. There she?d been, already in the perfect attire. ?Since I haven?t been in a place like this before, is there anything I should know??

?Nah. Here?s a membership form and release. Fill it out and give me twenty bucks to get in and five more for the membership, and you?re good to go.? The receptionist pushed a clipboard of papers across the desk. ?If you hurry, you?ll catch Master Simon giving an erotic flogging demo.?

?Master Simon?? A young woman in the line squealed. ?Oh God, he?s so hot!? She waved her hand in front of her face so vigorously that Rona almost offered the lace fan clipped to her waistband.

Rona filled out the forms and eyed the others signing in. Satisfaction eased her nerves at the sight of the costumes: an evening gown over wide hoops, a tea gown like hers, two maid outfits with aprons. Any other night she?d be clueless as to what to wear to a BDSM club, but tonight she fit right in. How could she have resisted?

Then she noticed one lady wearing only a chemise. Another woman removed her coat, revealing a pristine white apron — and nothing else. A small worm of unease squirmed in Rona?s stomach. She gave the receptionist the paperwork and asked, ?Am I a little overdressed??

?Hell no.? The girl put the money away and handed over a membership card. ?Dommes wear that much, and lots of subs start off dressed. Makes it more interesting when you have to strip, right??

Strip. In a bar? Me? She?d only planned on watching. The thought of actually participating sent a shiver of excitement up her spine. ?Right.?

Rona tucked the card into her reticule, smoothed her gown, then opened the door to the inner sanctum and stepped into the nineteenth century. Her startled breath of air was redolent with perfumes, leather, sweat, and sex. As the passionate sound of Grieg?s Piano Concerto in A Minor surrounded her, she moved into the dimly lit room crowded with men in frock coats and women in bell-like gowns. How fun.

She walked forward slowly, trying not to gawk. Dark wood tables and chairs dotted the center of the long room. A small dance floor took up one corner in the far back; a shiny metal bar with two bartenders behind it occupied the other. All fairly normal. Where?d they hide the kinky stuff that her erotic romance novels had promised?

Then a man strolled past wearing nothing except a terrifying harness strapped to his cock and balls. Rona?s mouth dropped. Crom, but she could almost feel her nonexistent male equipment shrivel up in horror.

Shaking her head, she started toward the bar, then noticed the right and left wall each held a small stage.

One platform stood empty. On the other? Rona took an involuntary step back, bumped into someone, and muttered an apology without looking away from the stage where — surely that?s illegal — a man was whipping a woman chained to a post.

BDSM. Remember, Rona? She?d read about whips and chains and stuff — but seeing it? Whoa.

She pressed a hand to her hammering heart and squashed the impulse to go and snatch the whip from him. As if she could anyway. He stood a good six feet tall with a mature man?s solid build; she had a feeling that if someone were to punch him, he?d just absorb it. In keeping with the night?s theme, he wore a green silk vest over an old-fashioned white shirt. The rolled-up sleeves displayed thickly muscled forearms.

In contrast, his victim was completely naked, her dusky skin glowing dark red from the effects of the whip — No, it was called a flogger, right? The multiple strands stroked up and down her back so evenly that Rona could time her breathing to the rhythm. Mesmerized, she moved closer — threading her way through the tables and chairs scattered around the stage — and chose a table near the front.

Flogging. The word sounded brutal, but this?this was almost beautiful. The man swung the flogger in a figure-eight pattern, hitting one side of the woman, then the other. Rona leaned forward, setting her elbows on the table. He never struck over the brunette?s spine or flanks, obviously avoiding her kidneys with appallingly impressive skill.

He slowed and paused for a moment before whispering the strands across the woman?s back and legs. The woman had her side to the audience, and Rona could see her flushed face and glazed eyes. She was panting from the pain or? The victim?s bottom tilted outward, swaying in a way that implied arousal, not pain.

Arousal.

A grin flashed over the man?s tanned face. He stroked the woman?s inner thighs with the leather strands, up and down, each time moving closer to the Vbetween her legs. She moaned and wiggled.

Rona inhaled slowly, trying to damp the excitement sizzling through her veins.

The man started the flogging again, down the woman?s back, bottom, and thighs. Suddenly, he altered the pattern and flicked the lashes between her legs, right onto her pussy. The woman gasped.

So did Rona. She?d been so immersed, it felt as if the whip had hit her?there. Her insides melted into a puddle of liquid heat. The receptionist had had it right — this was an erotic flogging. Whew.

The music changed, beginning the dramatic conclusion of the movement, and even the murmured conversations died. Rona could almost smell the arousal in the room, and her hands clenched. So violent?so exciting.

He was flogging the woman?s thighs now, the blows gradually moving upward, even harder than before. And again he slapped the strands lightly between her legs. The woman?s squeak turned into a low moan. Then her back, down her thighs, and up slowly. The third time he hit her pussy, the woman shriek and climaxed, writhing in her chains.

A trickle of sweat ran down the hollow at the base of Rona?s spine, and her ragged breathing fought against the tight corset. How could something like this — a whipping — make her so hot?

The crowd cheered as the man released his victim. Although victim couldn?t be the right word, not with that satisfied expression on her face. Rona blinked in surprise when a younger man jumped onto the stage and took the woman into his arms. After a very tongue-laden kiss, the couple stopped long enough for the two men to shake hands and for the woman to kiss the back of the flogger?s hand.

He?d whipped a woman who wasn?t his?

Rona swallowed. Her fantasy of a lover tying her down, maybe even spanking her, seemed pallid next to the reality of what had just occurred.

Across the room, a man and woman began to set up equipment on the empty platform. As the music changed to Nine Inch Nails, the crowd divided: some to the other stage, some to the dance floor. Left alone, the man who?d done the flogging wiped down the post and packed his weapon into a leather bag. Hefting the bag over his shoulder, he strode toward the stage steps and halted at the edge, stopped by a small covey of — Rona snorted — groupies? Did BDSM have groupies?

Shaking her head in bemusement, she turned to look for a waitress. Maybe she should add ?Try out a hot dom? to her list. She grinned. Her ex had always ridiculed her five-year goal plans — as if disorganization were better. He?d have had heart failure if he?d seen her fantasy list.

No waitress in sight. She returned her attention to the stage and sighed in disappointment. Empty, like many of the chairs around her. Most of the people had moved to the other side.

A thump drew her attention to the table next to hers, and she gaped like a moron. The man from the stage stood there with his leather bag at his feet. On the table lay a black frock coat and old-fashioned cuff links that he must have removed before starting his demonstration.

She watched as he rolled down the sleeves of his shirt. His dark eyes looked almost black, and his deeply tanned face was lean and hard. With the lines of pain and laughter around his mouth and eyes, and silver glinting in his neatly trimmed black hair, he must have been around forty. And yet when he moved, muscles rippled and strained the shoulders of his white shirt.

Not only a hunk, but older than her. Yet she didn?t even consider flirting. Not with this one. He was too?too intimidating. Not like a young, buff underwear model, all gorgeous and everything, but in a far-more-dangerous way.

Of course he?s dangerous — he has a flogger, and he knows how to use it.

All her minuscule experience with BDSM came from reading erotic romances. She?d always wanted to try a few things, but Mark had laughed at her and refused to do anything to liven up their sex life. Not that they?d even had a sex life the last few years.

Her horizons had definitely expanded since the divorce, but not enough for her to jump into seriously kinky stuff. She?d simply planned to watch and note some ideas to add to her fantasy list, but certainly not to make a pass at a really, really experienced BDSM practitioner.

No matter how gorgeous he looked.

Don?t drool. She tried to casually lean back but slouching in a corset was impossible. Stymied, she turned her gaze to the other stage, where a woman costumed as a schoolmarm wrapped ropes around a young man wearing only breeches. Rona managed to keep her attention there for, oh, a good minute, before returning to the man.

She frowned. He was trying to get a cuff link into his shirt and failing miserably. For some reason, the fingers of his left hand didn?t bend. His frustrated growl switched him in her mind from a hunk to someone who needed her.

She walked over, pushed his hand to one side, and fastened the heavy silver link. ?There.? With a smile, she patted his arm comfortingly. ?Now –?

She looked up into intent, powerful eyes, and every cell in her body went into a meltdown. He kept her pinned with those dark eyes, studying her as if he could see through to her soul.

He moved closer, forcing her to tilt her head back to look up at him. When her breath stuck in her chest, his lips curved into a faint smile. ?You didn?t even think before coming to my rescue, did you?? he asked, and his voice was as dark and smooth as everything else about him.

She should apologize. ?I-I?m –?

?Be silent.?

Her throat just plain shut down completely, and the laugh lines around his eyes crinkled slightly. ?Submissive,? he murmured. ?But no submissive would shove a master?s hands away and take over. You?re new??

He didn?t wait for an answer but ran a finger down her cheek, her neck, across the tops of her pushed-up breasts.

His touch burned through her, leaving an aching need. The trembling inside her stomach worked outward until her legs wobbled. ?Please,? she whispered.

He tilted his head. ?Please what, pet??

?Please don?t tease me.? Feeling like an idiot — a very confused, aroused idiot — she dropped her gaze and tried to take a step back.

His hand closed around her upper arm, firmly enough that she knew she?d go nowhere.

?Look at me.? A finger under her chin raised her face. His lips curved into a faint smile. ?Very new, I see.?

?Yes.? Her next effort to move back met the same results — none.

?A submissive need not call any dom but her own ?Sir,? but if she approaches a dom on her own and then reacts like this? — his finger left her chin to stroke over her trembling lips — ?then she had best address that dom as ?Sir.??

Acutely aware of the warmth of his finger still on her lips, she felt as if she were drowning in molten air.

He paused, then prompted, ?Say, ?Yes, Sir.??

Oh. ?Yes, Sir.? She?d used the phrase before, teasingly with the hospital doctors, sarcastically with idiots, but now it reverberated through her like the sound of a bass drum.

?Very good.?

A woman wearing only a corset, fishnet stockings, and high heels suddenly dropped to her knees beside the table. ?Master Simon. Can I serve you in any way??

He turned.

Freed from his gaze, Rona tried to retreat, but his hand, hard and ruthless, tightened. The feeling of being controlled swamped her senses.

Her heart raced as if she?d received an injection of Adrenalin, but with his attention diverted, she managed to pull in a steadying breath. I?m a mature woman, an administrator, smart and professional. Why do I feel like a cornered mouse? And it turned her on like someone had opened a hormone faucet.

She glanced down at the kneeling woman and winced. Not only willing to give Master Simon anything he wanted, but also blonde, slender, gorgeous. And young.

Rona was none of those. Escape. Definitely time to escape.

?Thank you, no,? Simon told the kneeling sub, waving her off politely but firmly. Another youngster. He smothered a sigh. The enthusiastic, young ones seemed so very undeveloped. He preferred women, yet the interesting, older subs were usually involved, or they had emotional problems. He hadn?t met a well-balanced submissive in quite some time.

I?m lonely. Divorced for several years, his son in college, his house empty, he?d recently grown aware of how much he?d like someone to embrace at night, to talk with in the evenings, to share everything from a new dessert to the day?s victories and disasters. He could find a willing body all too easily, but not an open heart, an interesting mind, and an independent spirit.

But this one? Simon turned his attention to the submissive who?d dared to help him without asking. Not young, probably somewhere in her thirties. Her face had lines that said she?d seen sorrow. Had laughed. Her full breasts, pushed high and taut, displayed the silver striations that showed some baby had been held against her heart and nourished. The way she?d briskly brushed away his hands from the cuff told him she was used to being in charge. The melting look in her eyes when he?d touched her said she was submissive.

Very appealing. And oddly familiar. Had she visited the club before?

But she kept trying to retreat. Why? Of course, a dom might make an inexperienced sub nervous, but she?d shown definite interest before?before the interruption. His eyes narrowed. The kneeling sub had been young and pretty. Was this confident woman uncertain of her appeal?

She tugged at her arm again and actually frowned at him.

?I don?t believe we finished our conversation,? Simon said.

Her gaze lifted. In the dim bar, her eyes appeared blue or green. Her hair, a streaky color between blonde and brown, had been pulled back into an ugly Victorian bun. That would be the first thing he?d fix.

He held out his free hand. ?My name is Simon.?

As wary as a treed cat, she still managed to say politely, ?It?s nice to meet you, Simon.?

That lovely, low voice would deepen after she came a few times. His fingers closed over hers, and he kept his other hand wrapped around her arm. Now he had her securely trapped, and the knowledge appeared in her eyes. Her breath quickened, her tongue flicked over her lips, and she swayed, almost imperceptibly, toward him. Yes, the feeling of being controlled aroused her.

Now, wouldn?t she look lovely in ropes? ?And you are??? he prompted.

?Rona.?

?Scottish? Yes, it suits you.? He looked down into her eyes, enjoying the slight tremble of her fingers in his. ?Is this your first time in a BDSM club, Rona??

?Yes.?

?And how long have you been here??

?Not even an hour.?

?Not even.? The phrasing implied she felt off balance. And he?d definitely pushed — was still pushing, which wasn?t appropriate or honorable to do to a sweet newbie. When he opened his hands and released her, the sense of loss surprised him. I want to keep this one.

But the choices, always, belonged to the submissive — unless and until she freely gave over those choices to him. ?Do you want a guide, or would you rather explore on your own??

She hesitated. ?Um. Well??

She didn?t want a guide. Despite her obvious attraction to him, she?d prefer to see the place on her own. He almost laughed at his annoyance. Getting too accustomed to adulation, was he? This woman might tremble, but she wouldn?t throw herself at anyone?s feet, and that only increased his interest.

?All right.? He ran a finger down her cheek, marking her as his in the indefinable way of dominance. ?I will see you later, then.?

? Cherise Sinclair, May 2010
All Rights Reserved