If you are just coming across this blog.Please take a min and go to Romance in the Backseat first so you can read the quiz as well.All coming from the quiz- answers_ dead ahead >
6- Oh it's just a regular man (regular man whose father made a pact with the Devil to bring back to life and is now sort-of crazy that is) Like in Blood Curse By Crystal Rain Love
Blurb about the book
Three sets of immortal mates...One warrior born to save the world from Satan's wrath.
Vampires. Witches. Shifters. All will band together to stop the darkness from winning. Fury ignites, love blooms, and relationships are put to the test, all with a passion that proves hotter than the flames of hell. The battle to save the world doesn't get any sexier.
When Aria Michaels sets out to find the vampire who took her mother’s life, she’s stunned when she finds Rialto Renaldi, the vampire who has been haunting her dreams, instead. She hadn’t believed he was real, and she knows she should run from Rialto as fast as she can. But who better to help her find her mother’s killer?
Rialto is reluctant to help the mortal woman who has invaded his dreams, even though he’s curious about who she is and why she has this strange connection to him. He isn’t, however, about to satisfy his curiosity. The last time he became involved with a mortal, he ended up destroying her. But he knows that if Aria searches for the killer on her own, she’ll join her mother in death.
Finally, Rialto agrees to help Aria, but the pair soon learns that fate brought them together for a much larger purpose, and fate has every intention of destroying them if they don't fulfill their roles in the Blood Revelation Prophecy . . .
7-9 Crap, it's a witch and she wants to drain your powers for herself or at the very least she wants you dead. Like in Unbound by Lori Devoti
Risk Leidolf is a hellhound—a legendary, otherworldly creature who is both man and beast. For centuries, he’s been bound to do the bidding of an immortal witch. But after being ordered to destroy novice witch Kara Shane, the man within him rebels. And the beast within him is held at bay—for now.
Fiercely drawn to each other, Risk and Kara soon form a passionate alliance as they set out to find her missing sister—and the key to his salvation. For the power unleashed by the twin witches could free him from the immortal witch’s bondage. But that freedom comes at a steep price. For the fierce battle will put more than one soul at stake…and two hearts on the line.
10-14 Oh No it's an evil you and she(you) wants you dead. Like in A Tale of Two Demon Slayers by Angie Fox
Last month, I was a single preschool teacher whose greatest thrill consisted of color-coding my lesson plans. That was before I learned I was a slayer. Now, it’s up to me to face curse-hurling imps, vengeful demons, and any other supernatural uglies that crop up. And, to top it off, a hunk of a shape-shifting griffin has invited me to Greece to meet his family.
But it’s not all sun, sand, and ouzo. Someone has created a dark-magic version of me with my powers and my knowledge—and it wants to kill me and everyone I know. Of course, this evil twin doesn’t have Grandma’s gang of biker witches, a talking Jack Russell terrier, or an eccentric necromancer on its side. In the ultimate showdown for survival, may the best demon slayer win.
15-18 Oh just swell, It's the Shadow Wolves, a dark force possessing a magic so strong even Vampires tread lightly. Like in Regina in the Sun By R G Alexander
There’s only one place left to run—into forbidden arms.
Children of the Goddess Book 1
When she arrives at Ye Olde Haven Pub, the sanctuary for Trueblood Vampires, Regina is wounded and desperate. Her only thought is to save the Deva Clan, her family, from the dangerous Loups De L’Ombre, the Shadow Wolves. She knows she will not exactly be welcomed with open arms. She is, after all, an Unborn, the lowest caste of Vampire.
As a natural born from the purest line, Zander Sariel knows the rules are sacrosanct—a Trueblood mates with his own kind. But one taste of the young Unborn is all Zander needs to know that rules were made to be broken.
With enemies at every turn, Zander risks everything to save Regina from the monster that hunts her, his own kind’s ignorance and—if he must—her lack of faith in her own unique abilities.
Only together do they have a chance to defeat the shadow that haunts their future, and save their entire race from extinction.
18-21 Just peachy, It's Deumos. A demon of great beauty and she wants to repopulate the earth with her spawn(to destroy the earth of course) Like in The Egyptian Demon's Keeper by Ciar Cullen
Love—it’s the real thing. And complicated as hell…
Archeologist Eliza Schneider assumes her meeting with an exotic stranger in the Egyptian desert was a heat-induced hallucination…until he materializes in New York. She has to give the tall, handsome Egyptian high marks for originality with his pick-up line: they’re fated to save the world together. The master/servant thing goes a long way toward sweeping her off her feet, but it’s easier to believe he’s just another in her long line of poor romantic choices.
Kasdeya, the Fifth Satan, waited eons for his Keeper to find her way to his tomb amongst the ancient ruins. He only has a limited time to convince Eliza that her role is critical to help defeat the loathsome Deumos, a female demon who has laid her claim to bearing his child—a child that will bring down mortals.
Trouble is, Eliza doesn’t even believe Kasdeya is real. If he can’t convince her he isn’t an illusion—and neither is their love—Deumos will win.
22-24 Great! It's the Devil himself He wants your soul and he's got jobs for you to do as well.Like in The Devil To Pay by Michele Hauf
After the devil Himself claims Ivan Drake's soul on his twenty-first birthday, the vampire phoenix has no choice but to enforce his wicked rule. But when the devil sends him to claim the Book of All Spells, the last thing Ivan expects is to square off with its gorgeous protector, the witch Dez Merevech--or to be so attracted to her.
To retrieve the book might end the escalating war between the witches and the vampires, but to take it from Dez will ensure her death. With the fate of the paranormal world hanging in the balance, Ivan must choose wisely--and quickly....
I hope you all had fun!I know I did. Please leave us a comment and tell us what you got on your quiz or if you just found a couple of new books to read. I'd love to hear from you ;)
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
No Longer Mine:
One woman, one man, and a love that won’t let either of them go.
Born on the wrong side of the tracks and dealt a fair share of hardship, Nikki Kline never gives up a fight. Even when her reason to keep going is ripped from her, Nikki tries desperately to hang on. But when the man who broke Nikki’s heart comes back into her life she doesn’t know how much she can take. Especially since that man seems determined to win back her damaged heart.
Wade Lightfoot is a man who knows he’s made more mistakes than most. As much as he would like to repair the damage he’s done to those he loves, Wade also knows there is no going back. But when he sets out to put things right the last thing he’s prepared to find out is that he had a son. A son he’ll never get the chance to meet.
When the truth is out and all the old wounds are bared, it seems impossible that Nikki and Wade will find their way back to each other. But true love is an undeniable force that even past hurts can’t destroy.
This book has been previously published and has been revised from its original release.
Warning: This title contains heartbreaking tragedy, lies and deception, and a scorching passion that nothing can deny.
What do I have to do to win you ask? Buy No Longer Mine by Shiloh Walker
It was hot—the kind of heat that wrapped around a person, threatened to suffocate, threatened to choke. Hot, with leaden, overcast skies that seemed to promise rain, but it had been overcast for days and they hadn’t seen a drop.
Nicole Kline was just outside of town when she flipped on the radio and heard the weather report. A storm was coming.
Not the ideal day for a run into town, but it was either suffer the heat or suffer the frustration when all she found for dinner was Cheetos and frozen ground beef. If she had paid attention to the weather before they had left home she would have suffered the Cheetos, the frozen ground beef—and her younger brother’s griping.
Instead of trying to make the thirty-minute drive back to her home in the hills, she decided to grab her groceries then go to her dad’s and wait it out there.
She made it in and out of the store in under twenty minutes. As she walked outside with her infant son, Jason, perched on her hip, she glanced up at the sky. The sight of the thunderheads piling up overhead made her wince.
Her brother, Shawn, bumped her shoulder with his. “Come on,” he said. “We’re going to get soaked if we wait around too long.”
She made a face. “We’re going to get soaked anyway.” She chucked her son under his chin and smiled at him. Not that he was at all worried about those clouds.
The scent of rain hung heavy on the air.
Looks like the farmers are going to get the rain they want and then some, Nikki mused as she secured the straps on the baby’s car seat. After she finished securing Jason in his seat, she went around to help her brother finish loading the groceries into the back of the SUV.
Flattened drops of rain splattered the hood of the car as she slid into the driver’s seat. Then Nikki glared at the skies as the clouds burst, dousing the parking lot under a deluge of water.
“Don’t sweat it, Nik,” Shawn advised. “We can just wait it out at Dad’s.”
She sighed. That had been the plan anyway, not that she had told Shawn. Her brother and her father were on the outs for some reason, which was why Shawn had been spending the past few weeks at her place.
She could hear Jason jabbering to himself from the backseat.
“Dogs, dogs, dogs,” he chanted over and over while he played with a tattered stuffed mouse and chewed busily on the remaining ear.
At least that was what she thought he was saying.
Flicking Shawn a glance, she ordered, “Put your seatbelt on, will ya?”
Rolling his eyes, he fastened the lap belt and drawled, “Yes’m.” He gave Jason a look in the mirror, circling his finger at his temple. The baby laughed and clapped his hands before launching into a long and detailed jabbering monologue with his friend, Mouse.
Hazel eyes squinted, Nikki stared through the windshield, blocking out the noise of the rain and her son’s jabbering. Even though she drove with the lights on, she couldn’t see much more than fifteen or twenty feet in front of her.
Twenty minutes passed and she still wasn’t at her dad’s. The store wasn’t even ten minutes from there, but that was under normal driving conditions.
Growling with frustration, she snapped, “I can’t see a damn thing in this!”
The rumble of thunder edged closer. Lightning flashed.
“You’re almost there, sis. It’s just up there.”
She spotted the turn off as Shawn spoke. “Almost there, fella,” she said as Jason started shrieking, “Eat! Momma, eat!”
“Just a few minutes, Jas—”
Neither Shawn nor Nikki saw the other car. It came flying around a curve fast—so fast—and hit them from behind. She was thrown forward. Blinding pain sliced through her head and a loud, thunderous crash filled her ears.
A blaring noise rent the air, but above it she heard a baby’s panicked, startled cry.
From the passenger seat next to her, Shawn swore viciously, grabbing for the door handle.
“Jason!” Her voice was garbled, choked. Blood filled her mouth and a red haze clouded her vision.
Instinctively she slammed on the brakes, wrenched the steering wheel to the right towards safety. Off to their left was a steep drop off—
Another jolt struck her SUV, throwing her back. She was pinned against the seat by her safety restraint as the world started to spin before her. Above the roaring in her ears she heard thunder and the screeching sound of metal against metal. Then all was silent.
and you could win a Sony Reader Pocket Edition (color optional)!
Well Pop over to Shiloh Walker's blog and read the details of entry
And GOOD LUCK EVERYONE !!!!
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Review of Prisioner of Desire by Delilah Devlin and a peek at her new book First Knight + some Contest Info
Prisoner of Desire > Book 1 Of the Desire series-
Captain Adamarik Zingh and his pirate crew have captured many a ship, pillaged their cargoes, pleasured their women, while thumbing their noses at the Dominion’s authority. But pirating is a lonely business and Adam and his men have entered a pact to set down roots, self-govern without Dominion interference, and raise families on an uninhabited planet at the edge of the known galaxy. What they need now are wives.
Evena McClure is the elected Cell Block Captain aboard a Dominion penitentiary serving her time along with nearly 400 female prisoners. When pirates overtake their ship Evena resists, mindful of her duty to protect the women. When the pirate captain offers freedom to only a hundred of the prisoners, Evena and the women form alliances to broker a deal to free more of their sisters.
The pirates and the prisoners have only a week to seduce the other side to their will.
How I got this book- I was luck enough to win this e-book while attending a chat last night. Thank You so much Delilah :)
Why I picked this one- I was givin the chance to pick a e-book from her back-list and as I looked around her site I reliased I had missed this whole series so of course I had to start with book 1.
Did I like it- Oh yeah I did. I couldn't put it down hence the review a day after I received it
General thoughts- This is a great tale of Evena McClure, an innocent prisioner who is eagerly awaiting a pardon so she can get revenge on the man who put her in prision with his misdeeds. Adamarik Zingh( Adam as he is called) is a pirate ready to settle down and have a family. He and his crew come up with the perfect plan to find the some women to be their wives on a new planet. They will go to the womens prision and break a few of them out. Adam wants Evena but does she want him enough to give up her dreams of home and revenge.
I was captived by this steamy read . Delilah Devlin's eye for detail without complete swamping you brought this space age tale to life for me. Her no-fear attitude submerged every page in sexual heat. If you like me have a love of the sci-fi and have missed this series Go.. Get it Now...
I RECOMMEND IT ...
And Now for your reading pleasure here's an excerpt
Excerpt from Delilah Devlin site http://www.delilahdevlin.com/
His communications mate pressed the intercom switch.
“Warning! You are entering Interplanetary Dominion controlled space.” The computer-generated message transmitted in the Universal Language. “This ship is a Dominion Prison. Any vessel detected within a one hundred milli-league radius of the ship will be destroyed.”
“Retract the visor,” Adam ordered, ignoring the warning.
The whirring sound that accompanied the retracting curtain of metal grated, reminding Adam of the loss of his previous spacecraft. Its state-of-the-art bioluminescent screen would have recreated the view of space without leaving the ship’s hull vulnerable.
But pirates couldn’t be too choosy. The lumbering transport vessel he now captained had enabled his band of raiders to creep close to their target, beneath the blanket of the Dominion’s detector beams. Its unremarkable appearance in this little-traveled part of the universe was a perfect ruse.
“I see her, Adam.” The man at the helm, his first mate Cantor Marlow, dipped the prow of the ship leeward. The sudden change in tack caused the old barge to shudder violently. Then a low, ominous groan from the hull itself rattled the consoles, spilling cups and charts onto the floor.
Adam maintained his balance, barely, and turned to glower at his first mate. “Cookie’ll dice your innards for that. He’ll be cleaning grub from the ceiling for a week.”
Cantor shrugged, a wicked twinkle in his eye. “I was just making sure the breaching crewmen were out of their bunks.” His gaze shifted beyond Adam. “There she is.”
Adam glanced through the open portal, searching the sky. The infinite, black night stretched before him. Full of endless possibilities. A siren’s call that had beckoned him from his first voyage.
Then he saw it. The enormous hull of the prison ship loomed in the distance — anticipation leapt in his veins. “Alert the breaching crew.”
His first mate grinned. “Lucky sods!”
Three whistles shrilled, followed by the alert message.
“Cantor, you’re in charge,” Adam called over his shoulder as he headed toward the hold of the ship.
“Aye, sir. Good luck, and don’t forget my list.”
Adam slapped his palm against the hold door button, and it slid silently open. Within the hold, the breaching crew was assembling-or at least he thought it was his crew. Gone were their beards and rough pirate’s clothing. In their place stood well-scrubbed, clean-chinned men.
His security officer, Darak, strode toward him wearing a deep, azure shirt, tucked into tan leather breeches.
“What in hell are you wearing?” Adam demanded.
“It’s just a little something I picked up at our last port of call. Alarian silk.” Darak shrugged, grinning sheepishly. “Quite sturdy material, actually.”
“You look like a peacock,” Adam complained. His gaze swept over the rest of his breaching party. “I’m capturing a ship with a bloody flock of peacocks!”
“The men await your orders, sir. They’re eager for this mission. Every one of them volunteered.”
Adam rolled his eyes. “They fought for the right to board. I’m lucky to have any crew left with blood enough for this capture. Is the breaching craft loaded?”
“Aye, aye sir. With eight days of supplies, should we need them.”
“Very well. Let’s get on with this.”
Darak pivoted on his heels. “Attention,” he shouted.
The crew leapt to obey, forming two ranks along the bulkhead.
Adam stomped down the line, his nose itching as he passed through a cloud of contesting colognes emanating from his bloodthirsty crew. “Are you planning on conquering them with smell?” he growled. As he passed his medic, his eyes watered uncontrollably. He paused, sniffing.
Doc blinked rapidly, moisture welling in his eyes. “It’s the scent of Alarian rose, sir-mixed with the pheromones of a Moldan yak. Very potent.”
“Grrr,” Adam glowered, then stomped back to the front of the formation. “We’ll enter the prison through the docking station. Be quick. Let’s have them contained before they realize we aren’t the warden and her guards. We only have a narrow window of time to get aboard undetected by the Dominion’s security system.” As he delivered his last instruction, he narrowed his eyes. “Don’t trip over your lace.”
“Captain,” Darak interjected.
“Sir, the men want to know if we’re certain this is the right prison ship.”
“I paid 10,000 dinars in Earth gold for the information. If it’s not the right ship, you’d best be ready to defend your virtue.” Adam enjoyed a moment’s satisfaction as his crew absorbed the message. “We’ve eight days to survive aboard ship before the Intrepid can rendezvous again without Dominion detection.”
Another crewmember raised his hand. “Is it really a ship full of women convicts?”
“Aye, and ripe for rescue,” Darak answered, producing laughter and cheers among his shipmates.
“How long have they been deployed?” another asked.
“Over three years,” Adam answered. “They may all be dead. We might find only a ghost ship.”
“Sir.” Ivan, the science officer and youngest of his crew, raised his hand. “What if there aren’t enough suitable women aboard for our purpose?”
“If they’re fertile, they’ll suit,” he replied bluntly. “When does our window open?”
Ivan checked his wrist computer. “The asteroid, Cygnet, will block Dominion detector beams beginning in five minutes.”
“Board up!” Adam shouted. He followed his crew into the breaching craft, scratching his beard and wondering if he should have changed his clothing.
* * * * *
Before the siren finished its first warning peal, Cell Block Captain Evena McClure rolled out of her bunk and onto her feet in one fluid movement.
“Damn HS block!” Two nights running she’d answered alarms in the high security cellblock. Although tired and cranky, she raced from her quarters to the cabinet that housed the behavior modification clubs, the only weapons permitted aboard the prison ship. Slapping her palm to the security reader, she waited impatiently until the door latch popped.
At the sound of the heavy thud of her CB Sergeant’s footfalls behind her, she tossed her a weapon, and then shouldered her own club.
“Thought I’d get a decent night’s sleep for once.” Mary Grogan smiled, a flash of startling white against her dark chocolate face as she fell into step beside Evena. “You wanna bet on who’s raising a ruckus this time?”
Evena shook her head. “No, I won’t take that bet. I’d lose.”
Together, the two women rushed down the corridor leading from the guard quarters directly to the security surveillance room. Entering, Evena noted the two women on night watch standing at the viewing panels.
“Calandra, what’s the problem?”
The guard darted a glance over her shoulder. “That damn psychopath Celestine refused to don her uniform, again. I sent a couple of guards to persuade her, but she got the drop on them. Celestine’s fashioned a wire whip.” She moved to the side to allow Evena to see the viewing screen. “One guard is down. The other’s doing her best to keep out of reach.”
Evena frowned as she watched the battle in the cell. The guards’ uniforms were shredded, and one was bleeding heavily. “Damn! I’m going in.”
“Have a care. She’s slicing ribbons off them.” Calandra released the lock on the security gate to the high-risk cellblock then offered Evena a disgruntled grin. “Why don’t you just kill her? No one’ll miss that one.”
“Sorry to disappoint, but she’s not worth risking my pardon.”
Evena slid back the door and jogged toward Celestine Monteval’s cell, Mary once again at her heels. The occupants of the other cells didn’t alert their fellow cellmate, evidence that even the most extreme of the violent offenders weren’t rooting for that psychopath.
Grunts and curses sounded from the open cell door. Evena hefted her club, smacking it against her palm loudly as she stood in the doorframe.
Celestine spun toward her, then let the tail of her whip fall lax against the floor.
Evena spared a single glance at the bloodied guard, who slid down the wall, chest heaving, relief evident in her expression. A throaty chuckle drew her attention back to the problem, and her eyes narrowed.
Celestine was naked except for the tattoo of a crimson snake, which undulated across her golden skin, emphasizing a figure that would inflame a monk-which was what Evena felt like these days. Celestine’s perfect white teeth flashed in a triumphant smile. ” Captain , did I wake you?” she asked mockingly.
Evena ignored the woman’s taunt. Instead, she glanced over her shoulder at Mary. “While I keep her occupied, get the other two out of here.”
“And Mary, she doesn’t come out of here alive.”
Celestine’s lips thinned into a malevolent grimace, emphasized by the ominous hiss of her homemade whip slapping against the floor.
Evena cocked her head left than right, popping the vertebrae in her neck, before she said in a bored tone, “Okay Celestine, I’m going to ask you once, nicely, to get back into your uniform.”
“I hate to disappoint you, but I can’t possibly. My skin doesn’t breathe in that damn thing,” she said, smoothing a hand down her naked flank.
Evena gritted her teeth. Celestine was going to refuse every reasonable offer. However, Evena’s office demanded she offer a peaceable settlement. “Well, I’ll make a deal with you,” she said in a tone that implied she didn’t think Celestine had the intellect to understand. “You put the uniform back on, and I won’t withhold your water rations.”
A frown darkened the stunning face of the psychopath. “You can’t do that. Who made you God?”
“The majority of the women aboard the New Attica who elected me CB Captain.”
“I don’t recognize your right to order me around. You’re no better than I am.”
Oh yeah? Who’s running this ship and who’s stuck in an HS cage? Evena’s pride kept the starch in her backbone and her retort behind her teeth. “The women have given me the right. I’m responsible for order aboard this ship. My first duty is to ensure that every prisoner abides by the recycling laws.”
“Here’s what I think of your rules.” Celestine swung her arm wide, jerking it back at the top of the arc to produce a lightning crack of her whip.
Evena feinted right, narrowly escaping the razor-sharp metal.
Celestine advanced, her face red with rage. “It’s not fair. Why do you get the run of the ship, while I’m locked in here?”
“Because you’re nuts, Celestine.” Evena forced herself to stand still, pretending unconcern for her opponent’s approach. The bitch was unpredictable. While Evena was confident she could take her, and itched for an excuse to take her down, she’d die before she let Celestine to know she held a healthy respect for her brutality. “Our internal review board sentenced you to this block. I’m merely upholding their ruling.”
Celestine’s hands fisted at her sides. “I’m going fucking insane here. I’m from Arturia. I’m not made to be without a partner.”
“You tried to take the face off your last lover, Celestine.”
“The bitch threatened to leave me,” Celestine screeched. “I was just helping her on her way.”
Suddenly, the whip snaked out, wrapping around the end of Evena’s club. Celestine jerked sharply.
The tug was meant to disarm Evena, but she’d anticipated the move and pulled back hard.
Celestine cried out and let go of the whip to avoid slicing her hands open. Before it hit the floor, she leapt at Evena.
Evena took the force of her charge and rolled with it, quickly pinning the woman to the ground. Grasping Celestine’s hands, she stretched her arms above her head, and lowered her body to trap her opponent against the floor, careful to keep her face out of reach of the psychopath’s sharp teeth.
Celestine shuddered beneath her, her expression morphing from enraged to sultry in a second. “Oooh, if I’d known you were that hard-up, I’d have issued another kind of invitation, Evena.”
Evena wiped all emotion from her face. “Shut up.”
“What’s the matter? Want some?” she asked with a roll of her belly.
The smell of the woman’s sweat was pungent yet strangely enticing. Evena glowered, disgusted she’d even noticed. “I’d sooner fuck my nightstick.”
Celestine’s sultry pout grew surly, and she resumed bucking beneath Evena, nearly unseating her.
Evena shifted, clamping her forearm over Celestine’s and freeing a hand to grab Celestine’s hair. She lifted the other woman’s head off the floor, then slammed it down. “This is the way this is going down.” Thump! “I’m going to get up slowly. You’re not going to so much as twitch-” Thump! “-because if you do, Mary here is going to use her stick to lobotomize you.” She twisted her fingers into the hair and tugged hard. “Do you understand me?”
“Yes.” Celestine ground out.
Evena stared into the dangerous woman’s eyes until she finally turned away. “I’m going to get up now. When I say so, you can start getting your uniform on.”
“I’m not wearing it,” Celestine’s voice was petulant and small. “It smothers me.”
Evena fisted a hand in her hair, forcing her to look at her. “Listen, you spoiled little bitch! You haven’t the right to withhold your sweat or piss. If you don’t comply, you won’t get your ration of water. Do you understand me?”
Celestine snarled and pitched beneath her.
Evena’s already bad mood soured. She wished like hell the woman would lay still. It had been too long since she’d touched another person’s naked skin. That she was lying on top of a professional courtesan further frosted her ass.
Two shrill whistles sounded.
Evena’s head snapped up. “Damn. The warden.” She let Celestine’s head thump back against the floor and sprang off her.
She swept her club from the floor and shot a glance to Mary. “I’ll have to let you clean up here.”
Mary grinned, slapping her club against her palm. “My pleasure.”
With adrenaline still pumping through her veins, Evena passed the HS gate and loped toward the docking station. A visit from the warden could mean news of her pardon, if she wasn’t just delivering new prisoners. At the very minimum, the prison galley would receive its quarterly shipment of protein packs and water to supplement their recycled stores.
As she approached the docking station, she heard screams from within. The door slid open and three of her guards ran out. “Captain, pirates are boarding!”
Cold dread settled in her stomach. “Get to the security room. Arm yourselves. Sound the general alert.”
Evena raised her club and entered the room. It was overflowing with men-brightly dressed men. And more were climbing through the docking port. Four of her guards were struggling wildly to escape their captors’ arms.
“Release the women,” she shouted.
All eyes turned toward her. Evena wondered whether she should’ve waited for reinforcements as one man strode toward her. Unlike his comrades, he was dressed entirely in black. His dark, disheveled hair brushed the tops of his shoulders, and a many-days-old beard-stubbled his chin. Dark eyes swept over her in a single quick appraisal, burning her skin.
Evena’s pulse pounded loudly in her ears, and a quiver of awareness fluttered deep in her belly. He was a large man, broad-shouldered and heavily muscled, and despite his wary scowl, a handsome one.
She raised her club higher and bent her knees, sinking into a fighting stance.
The bearded pirate raised a hand. “I come in peace.”
Evena’s glance dropped to the laser sword at his side, before mocking his claim with a cynical lift of her brow.
He spread his hands wide and took another step toward her. “We couldn’t be sure who would be aboard.”
She snorted. “What? You couldn’t read the warning on the portal? This is the New Attica. A prison ship. The Dominion doesn’t have a sense of humor about intruders. And weapons aren’t permitted here.”
His frown deepened, and he took another step forward. “That isn’t exactly a toothpick you wield.”
Evena resisted the urge to retreat. “I’ll repeat. You and your men have trespassed on a Dominion prison. We’ve nothing of value to steal here.”
“I take it you’re in charge?”
“Yes, and I’m ordering you to depart immediately.”
“I’m afraid we can’t do that for at least another eight days, that is if we don’t want to be caught in the security beams and obliterated.”
“Not my problem.”
The corners of his lips twitched. “You’re a stubborn wench, and a bit bloodthirsty. I like that. Aren’t you curious why we’re here?”
“Nope,” she said, shifting one foot to the other. Aware of movement around her, she was unable to look toward it, as the bearded man was within the reach of her club now. “Like I said, we’ve nothing here of value.”
“That’s where you’re wrong. We’re here to conduct a little business with you and your fellow inmates.”
“Then you’ve wasted your time. What exactly do you think we have to bargain with?”
“Explain that before I beat in what’s left of your brains.”
“Very well. We seek wives.”
And now for the Peeking
Delilah has a new book coming out Tomorrow so I thought we'd take a peek cause I adore Delilah's writing
On Sale: April 28, 2010
While hiding her true identity, Maddie must seduce the mysterious Lord Garon to cement their marriage contract to ensure she won’t be returned into her lecherous stepfather’s care.
Fresh from Crusade in Palestine, Lord Garon has a secret he must hide, a hunger that must be fed, and a dark and uncertain future. Having shed himself of a fiancée he never met, he’s home to lick his wounds. The only thing he wants is a warm-blooded meal—but the new housekeeper is strangely insistent on giving him much more.
Maddie shivered at the creaks and groans the portcullis made as it slowly rose. The rain-laden wind carried the noises and filled the silences in between with a howling that sounded like the hounds from hell had arrived at the castle gate.
Shouts outside the curtain wall had alerted them only minutes before of Lord Garon d’Albermarle’s arrival. With only a bliaut over her sleeping shift, Maddie stood on the first step of the keep, holding a tray with a goblet of wine, ready to offer a proper greeting to her overlord.
“Are you sure this is the way you wish to go about this, M-Maddie?” Egbert asked, fidgeting at her side.
She swallowed against the sudden dryness in her mouth and nodded.
“It be on your head then,” he said, his always-mournful tone as dire as one of Father Ansel’s Sunday sermons. She sent thanks above that the cranky priest was away or her deception wouldn’t last past the introductions.
The clatter of dozens of hooves on the cobbled bridge beyond the gate filled the castle yard with thunder. From the encroaching darkness, the sounds were as ominous as the dark shapes looming on the gatehouse walls. The torches she’d ordered lit sputtered and flared, distorting and elongating shapes so the men riding through the entrance appeared as tall as giants.
Already tired and on edge because she hadn’t slept since a messenger had arrived, warning the castle of his lordship’s arrival days before, Maddie’s fevered imagination painted them darker and larger still.
“Be they devils?” Egbert asked, his narrow shoulders shaking. “No one travels on a night with nary a speck of light in the sky.”
“Hush!” The storm whipping at her clothing and the fatigue from months of worry over this very moment combined to make her hands shake and blackened an already foul mood.
The horsemen entered the bailey and a large figure separated from the contingent who approached the keep. As he drew closer, her fears weren’t eased one whit. The warrior sat atop a huge black destrier, forcing her to raise her gaze quite high to seek his face.
He wore a helm that left only his square jaw exposed. The darkness cast by the metal nose guard concealed his eyes. Only his mouth gave a hint of his mood—a thin, straight line with the corners crimped downward.
Under his stare, Maddie’s knees trembled but her tray never rattled. She squared her shoulders and shot a glance about her at the castle folk. “Stephen!” she called to the stable master. “See to their horses.”
In moments, boys scrambled to accept reins, and the creak of leather and the clank of iron filled the air.
The stable master himself approached the dark warhorse at the foot of the steps but the mounted warrior’s gaze never left Maddie.
She licked dry lips with an even dryer tongue. “Lord Garon?” she asked, although there could be no question who led this contingent. All gazes remained on his intimidating figure. “Please come inside, milord. Your people will see to the comfort of your men.”
His mouth twisted. “And who will see to mine?”
Maddie’s heart leapt to the back of her throat. “I will, milord.”
A long pause indicated he looked her up and down. “And who might you be, madam?” he asked, his voice a deep, hollow rumble.
Maddie remembered to curtsy and then straightened, girding herself to speak the lie aloud. “Your housekeeper. I take care of things now.” The latter, at least, was the truth.
Lord Garon grunted. Without a glance at the stable master, he tossed down his reins and dismounted.
When he turned toward her, Maggie’s breath caught. Lord, he’s a tall man. I thought it was just the horse.
Maddie lifted the ornate chalice from the tray to deliver her much-rehearsed welcome.
Instead, his lordship’s lips pressed into a tighter line and he brushed past her.
She was left gasping on the bottom step. “What a rude ogre!” she exclaimed, annoyed he hadn’t fallen in line with the first step of her plan.
“Watch your tongue, madam,” an accompanying knight said tersely as he followed the lord up the steps. “He has exceptional hearing.”
“M-Maddie?” Egbert said, nodding toward the door.
She shoved the tray at his belly and grasped her skirts high to rush up the steps.
The plan had seemed so simple. All she needed was to get him alone and addle his sight with a little wine or ale so he’d not care she wasn’t the comeliest creature in the keep. Then she would seduce him.
And the sooner, the better. The longer she took losing her virginity, the greater the risk he would discover her identity. The truth was, she would rather copulate with the devil himself than be returned home.
However, this business of copulation, which had seemed a simple, messy, perhaps even enjoyable act, according to the cook, now promised to be a daunting trial.
The lord of the keep turned out to be a giant and as dour as a priest at confession. The thought of being naked with him and accepting his manstaff into her body frankly petrified her.
She rushed through the massive doors, hoping her preparations would meet with his approval. Nothing else could be allowed to mar her well-thought-out plan.
His lordship stood in the center of the hall, hands on hips. Unlike his men, he wore no chain mail, only a leather hauberk to protect his body. He’d removed his headgear, revealing hair a black as midnight and a face as hard as carved granite.
He was everything she’d remembered and more—more frightening, more imposing—and more beautiful because of the differences. Thanks be to God, he hadn’t recognized her.
His gaze narrowed on the hall and she looked around to see what might have displeased him already.
Around him, servants scurried, delivering warm food to the men-at-arms as boys eagerly divested them of their armor. If she hadn’t been observing him so closely, she might not have detected the change in his posture. He scarce seemed to notice the din of activity. His mouth lost a little firmness, his hands unclenched on his hips and his chest rose and fell deeply.
In that instant, Maddie lost a measure of her fear. Here was a man savoring his first night home after a long absence. He had a heart and cared for something at least. Perhaps he wouldn’t be a complete troll when making her his wife.
Garon shut out the noises swirling around him and breathed in the scents of his home. The smells remained unchanged even after eight years away—wood smoke from the hearth, the moist mustiness clinging to the stone walls, roasted meat and women.
Unchanged from his memory, but enhanced by his “affliction”.
Now he could easily discern pheasant from roast beef, sage from rosemary—the laundress’s ripened odor from the housekeeper’s more delicate musk, which wafted in the air behind him where she hovered.
His sight was as improved as his scent. Even the darkest corners, far from the blazing torches in their sconces, were revealed in varying shades of gray—crisp as the autumn air outside. Outside, in the dark, the housekeeper’s eyes had been pale in her pinched, pallid face. He wondered now whether they were blue or hazel.
Sounds reverberated on the walls, a steady rumble of quiet conversations punctuated with sharp bursts of laughter. But the only sound that had raised his interest since his arrival was that of the housekeeper’s heart as she’d waited on the steps of the keep—an agitated tattoo indicating fear despite her calm demeanor.
She’d called him an ogre. If she knew the true nature of the beast, her trepidation would become terror.
“Milord, I’ve secured sustenance for you in your chamber,” Raymond, his captain-at-arms, murmured beside him.
Garon thanked God every day that he and Raymond had met on a faraway battlefield and discovered a connection that bound their destinies. Without him, he’d never be able to sustain this ruse.
“So quickly? I am hungry and thought I’d have to make do.” The throbbing hunger building in his belly had been nearly unbearable the last score of miles.
“Sisters. A friendly pair. They approached me. Said you’d remember them.”
He did. Sturdy, lusty blondes. Their names escaped him, but he well remembered how they used to play in his chamber, offering him hours of sensual delight. This time, however, the play would be quick, even deadly if he couldn’t harness his appetite. “You will wait outside the door and listen in case I have need of you.”
“Yes, milord. If the silence is overlong…”
Garon gave him a sharp, grim nod and turned toward the stairs.
The housekeeper waited at the bottom step, her hands worrying the frayed end of the braided rope securing the castle’s keys around her waist. Her shoulders straightened at his approach. “I’ve ordered a bath sent to your chambers.”
“Later. My man will tell you when I am ready.” He moved to brush past her, doing his best to ignore the heavenly scent of her skin and the pulse that throbbed at the base of her white throat. Her startled eyes were indeed hazel and too innocent for his purposes.
Light brown eyebrows lowered in a frown. “But, milord, the water’s already set to boil. It will be no bother—”
He continued up the stairs, catching a murmured curse from the woman.
So eager to please. She must wonder if her position was secure. At the death of his steward two years past, he’d been informed by courier that another had taken over the management of the estates. As she seemed to be the one in charge, he assumed she was capable, for the land he’d passed through had shown signs of a recent orderly harvest, and the keep was clean, the servants exacting in their care. Tomorrow night, he would tell the woman her place was safe. He had little interest or ability in seeing to the daily running of the estate.
That she was a woman filling a man’s shoes was only an annoyance. Dealing with her reports on a nightly basis would test his patience and he’d have to learn a measure of trust, which would be trial in itself.
He’d learned the hard way that a woman could best a man without using brute force. Sly intelligence and seductive wiles could win the battle when a man’s attention was centered between her legs. He had lost nearly everything to one such heathen bitch—a Saracen’s whore with a thirst for blood.
He shoved open the door of his chamber and hunger instantly clawed at his belly, rumbling loudly.
A fire blazed in the brazier in the far corner. The twins lay naked, warming the covers of his bed. Older now, their figures were a little overblown and fleshy, but their lips still curved in welcome. His body clenched as hunger overrode his caution. He climbed quickly onto the mattress to lie between them. The problem of how to take one without the other screaming the roof down about his ears was less of a concern than feasting on the bounty before him.
“Shall we undress you?” the one with a mole above her lip asked as she scooted closer.
“Later,” he growled, earning delighted giggles from the women. He twisted her body over his, her blonde hair forming a curtain to conceal the nature of his “taking”. Her screech of delight ended in a shocked squeak as he bit into the tender flesh of her neck.
“Milord?” she whispered, her hands pressing against his collarbone for a moment before her fingers curved into his shoulders, clutching him closer. She moaned and her hips ground into his erection.
“All that from just a kiss?” the other said, a plaintive note in her voice. “Save a little for me, Anne.”
Garon’s hands fisted in Anne’s hair, holding her still while he drew blood from the twin piercings at the side of her throat, sucking hard to assuage his hunger. Tasting of salt and copper, her blood coated his tongue, filled his throat and spread warmth throughout his body.
He sucked harder and she cried out, the rapture overtaking her body to set it trembling above his. As her hips ground harder into his, he widened his legs, and slipped a hand to her buttocks, kneading her generous mounds, and then pressing the hard bone of her mons against his cock. He matched her rhythm, bucking against her writhing body to ease the second hunger growing inside him.
A sharp knock on his chamber door penetrated his bliss-fogged mind and he withdrew his teeth, lapping her neck to clean away the smears of blood and close the small wounds he’d inflicted.
She murmured sleepily and burrowed her head against his shoulder, her hips slowing as she fell asleep.
He reached out to snag the other sister, dragging her to his side. When she aimed a kiss at his mouth, he turned from it, not wanting her to discover the length of his teeth, and dragged his lips along her throat. She moaned and nestled closer to his side.
A knock sounded again. He turned toward the door. “Yes, Raymond,” he shouted. “All is well.”
The door flung open and the housekeeper stomped into the room, her eyes widening at the sight of the two naked women. Her mouth gaped and then shut with an audible snap. Her gaze rose above the bed as though she were examining the ceiling for cobwebs. “I’ve brought your bath,” she said, her voice tight, red flags of color staining her cheeks.
With the sharpness of his bloodlust dulled, Garon’s carnal appetites arose full-blown—called to life by the shock and outrage warring in the mousy housekeeper’s expression.
Why her face and reed-thin form should appeal didn’t matter. That he had to have her and wipe away that look of disgust pouting her full lips did.
Garon’s mouth curved in wicked delight. “A foursome then?”
And I just wanted to let you all know - In celebration of her new release Delilah Devlin is running a contest on her blog http://www.delilahdevlin.com/blog/ for a chance to win a handmade ribbon-and-bead bookmark and a signed copy of the backlisted book of your choice from my Ellora’s Cave selection. So pop on by now cause it ends 4/28 I believe .
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Welcome to the Six Pack Ranch, where learning to live again takes some sensual twists.
Beth Danube has escaped to a small Alberta town to make a new start for herself and her three little boys. Her emotionally abusive husband may be dead and buried, but so is her heart. What she doesn’t want is another man in her life—not now, maybe not ever. Yet when her libido reawakens after ten years of unsatisfactory sex in the missionary position is any woman strong enough to turn down sex-in-boots, Daniel Coleman?
The middle child of the rowdy Coleman boys, Daniel’s the quiet one who has always subdued his desires and acted as peacemaker. His powerful attraction to the young widow takes him by storm, and he’s willing to pursue her until they both find satisfaction—in and out of the bedroom.
Only Beth isn’t sure she’s ready to cross the line. Becoming friends with blazing hot benefits means she’s still the one in control. Letting her heart trust again? She isn’t that brave—or foolish. Daniel is going to have to be mighty convincing to help her overcome the past.
The porch boards squeaked softly and he looked up from where he’d settled on the porch swing.
“You’ve got awesome kids. I’m sorry again about the swimming hole thing. It really never crossed my mind you didn’t know.”
She waved it away. “I’m embarrassed I didn’t figure out where they were disappearing to. I should have kept much better tabs on them. I’m so grateful you had an eye on them.”
He stood and peeked in the window. “Will you need to go and get them into bed?”
She nodded. “They’ll start on their own, but they’ll get distracted soon.”
Daniel smiled. “I think my Mama used to say it was like trying to herd cats to get us all in bed on time. I won’t keep you long, but…” He reached for her hand, linking his fingers in hers. She swallowed hard. Oh lord, it felt so good and scared her mindless. She stood, as still as a statue in spite of her pounding heart.
“I’d like to see you, Beth.”
She bit her lip. “I don’t think that’s a good idea.”
He turned over her fingers, his thumb brushing the groove on her ring finger that was slowly disappearing. After ten years of wearing her wedding band, the sign was still there, even though the ring was not. “You’re not married.”
She shook her head. “He’s gone.” He raised a brow and she had to say it, knowing the confusion not speaking plainly would cause. “He’s dead. He died in the accident that injured my leg.” Her throat went tight. Images flashed through her mind, the icy road, the glaring lights. The pain.
His fingers stilled. “I’m sorry.”
He pulled away, and she caught at his hand. Damn her indecision.
“It’s…okay. We were having troubles when he died, and I’m not grieving for him. Not really. I just don’t think it’s a good idea for you and me…” She couldn’t speak anymore. What she wanted and what she should do–why was it so damn hard to know which was which?
He squeezed her hand softly then let go and paced away. “There’s a whole lot I think you’re not saying right now. That’s fine. I’m still the man you met one night while you were in a drunken state and you don’t really know me.”
“I wasn’t drunk.”
He chuckled and she felt her face heat. “We call that liquid courage around here, darling, and you had some. I just want you to know I was serious back then when I said I was interested in you. I’m even more interested now, knowing you’re not a city girl living in some high-rise apartment hours away from me.”
“Maybe I’m not staying.”
“And maybe I’ll have time over the next months to convince you staying is what you need. I’m a good man, Beth. I’m not talking about taking over your life. I’m saying you intrigue me and you make my body ache. I think our attraction is something worthwhile exploring together.”
He moved closer. Her pulse pounded and she tilted her head up involuntarily to keep their eyes in contact.
“I want to kiss you,” he growled. Their bodies were close enough their heat meshed and a little gasp of need escaped her throat. “Do you want to kiss me?”
Oh god. “I shouldn’t.”
“But do you want to?”
Desire and being responsible warred within her. Accepting his touch tonight would make it all that much harder to turn him down the next time.
He pressed still closer and their torsos connected, his erection rubbing her belly. Her back hit the wall as he caged her without using his hands. Their lips brushed together and she sucked in his air, the full body of his flavour rolling over her tongue like a fine wine. He kissed her tenderly, not the white-hot passion she’d replayed over and over in her mind from the bar scene, but a worshipful caress that started and finished with their lips.
When he pulled away his pupils were huge, his smile even wider.
And he walked away, down the path that led into the trees.
And now to wet you appetite Chapter One (from Vivan's website)
She nursed her drink, waving back at her little sister who was jammed together with a hundred other people on the dance floor. Beth tried not to peek at her watch again, instead checking out the myriad of faces under the cowboy hats around her. She’d never seen so many boots and buckles in her life. Another round of ‘Yahoo’s’ rose into the air from a few little-too-well lubricated throats.
While she appreciated Darleen’s attempt at cheering her up and–how had she put it?–”pulling her back to the land of the living”, the bar scene had never been her thing.
It certainly wasn’t tonight.
One song ended, melding into another ear shattering rendition of someone done somebody wrong and Beth held the cool glass of her drink against her temple in the hopes it would slow the throbbing.
“There she is. Hey, Beth, look what I found on the dance floor!” Dar approached the table like a runaway train, dragging not one, but two cowboys by the hand. “They’re identical twins!” she shouted with glee.
Beth raised a brow. They certainly were, from the tops of their Stetsons, past the mischievous grins and the tight faded jeans to the worn shitkickers. “Well done. Now you just need a wandering gypsy and the arctic explorer and you’ll win the scavenger hunt.” She held out a hand to the first of the gorgeous specimens. “Beth.”
A warm hand clasped her fingers and gave a firm shake while a pair of piercing blue eyes gazed into hers. “Jesse Coleman, that’s my brother Joel. I can’t help you with an arctic explorer but I might know where there’s a gypsy or two.”
Beth laughed. “Sorry, but Darleen is a little enthusiastic at times. I’m attempting to keep her centered in reality.”
He pulled out a chair and sat in it backward, his mouth-watering smile never leaving his face. She sipped her drink. He was hot and kind of cute, but too young for her. Way too young.
“You dancing tonight Beth, or just exercising your imagination?” Jesse asked. She saw admiration in his eyes as he looked her over and it felt good. Maybe it was time to try to spread her wings again. She forced herself to take a long slow perusal of his body before smiling at him. His eyes darkened with interest. That was the kind of response she needed to see.
“Beth doesn’t dance since the accident,” Darleen piped up before she could answer for herself. “Oops. Shit, sorry sis. Shut mouth, throw away key.”
Beth found both the boys staring at her. Crap. It’s not like she planned on keeping it a secret.
She leaned back in her chair and pulled out her leg with its thick supporting brace. “I dance fine, Darleen, I just take up more room than is available on the floor. You go ahead, I’ll watch.”
The other twin spoke, adjusting the chairs until there was enough space for them all. “I’m happy to sit for a while. It’s been a long day and the dancing’s pretty much worn me out.”
Darleen rested on the arm of Joel’s chair, her body leaning into him. Beth coughed softly. Her sister was grown up and could make her own decisions, but she didn’t want to be in the know about any specific sexual escapades. From the looks Joel was bestowing on Dar, the potential for something to happen was high.
Besides, she had her own agenda tonight, and perhaps the young hotshot seated next to her would be a willing volunteer in her little research project. She sipped her drink and checked inwardly to see if she’d had enough to alcohol yet to loosen up her final inhibitions.
“So, why’s it called Six Pack Ranch?” Darleen now sat firmly in Joel’s lap and Beth blinked at having missed the movement that put her there. “You said the ranch has been around for generations, but six-packs are fairly new.”
Jesse laughed. “The ranch is officially the SP Ranch, after the first initials of the original Coleman brothers who established her, but the smartasses in town decided it stood for Six Pack a few years ago and the new handle stuck.”
Beth raised a brow. “The smartasses? Why would they do that? Usually nicknames have some basis in reality.”
“You’re pretty fixated on reality, aren’t you, sweetheart?” Jesse leaned over and took her hand in his, stroking her fingers smoothly. If she weren’t so sure she might have taught him only a few years earlier in one of her high school math classes, it would have felt even better. Now she wondered if he was of legal age to be in the bar. “You’re right, there’s more. Picture six boys growing up on the ranch. That started the idea. Plus, there’s this…” He rotated smoothly to end up by her side, tugging her close. Yanking up the bottom of his shirt he slapped her hand onto his abdomen.
Rigid muscles flexed under her palm and she froze for a second, his hand trapping hers against his skin. Oh God, she’d never felt anything like it before. Beth involuntarily drew a finger along the well-defined ridges, mesmerized by the sensation of individual muscle strands under the skin. A soft laugh brought her back to realize she sat fondling a stranger’s stomach in public and she snatched her hand away to safety.
She wiggled her finger in his face. “Bad boy.”
He laughed and leaned in closer. “I think you like bad boys.”
Beth shook her head. He had no idea how much she wanted the exact opposite.
Darleen giggled as Joel nuzzled behind her ear and Beth knew it was time to make a decision. She looked up from under her lashes to spot Jesse watching the other two at the table jealously, his attention back on her younger sister, and that was all the wake up call she needed. He might have thought she was amusing to tease, but she was way too old for him. She glanced around the dance floor. Damn it. Weren’t there any guys over the age of twelve in the room?
“I need to powder my nose.” She grabbed her purse and hid her smile as Jesse leapt to his feet to help her up. He was a polite thing, wasn’t he? If she weren’t old enough to have babysat him it might have been perfect.
It took a little maneuvering to make it through the crowd to the back of the room with her leg. The pulsing beat of the music stirred something inside her, the liquor setting her blood pounding for the first time in forever. The bodies tangling together on the dance floor made her jealous. How long since she had someone wanting her that badly? Hands and mouths unable to resist touching, no matter how visible they were to the eyes watching around them.
Hell, she’d never had that kind of relationship. She cursed at herself and pressed the door to the washroom a little harder than she intended, the frame slamming into the wall with a crash. The girls at the sink touching up their lipstick eyed her cautiously and she shook her head in derision, stumbling her way to a stall.
Great, now she was freaking out the party animals. The whole bar trip had been a bad idea from the start. As for her underlying goal? Obviously getting hot and sweaty was not on the agenda for tonight. She had her answer.
She washed her hands and stared at herself in the mirror. Inside, she felt a million years old, especially after seeing Joel fawn over Dar. On the outside, the news was mixed. Her new short hairstyle suited her dark colouring, but the tension from the past years had drawn lines at the corners of her eyes and she clearly wasn’t twenty anymore. She’d managed to keep her weight stable, even with the bummed-up leg. She missed her daily runs and the physical high she used to get from them. Those times alone had been her only moments of escape from the hell her life had become. In the six months since the accident there had been no more of that freedom.
Although the worst part of her prison was gone. Hopefully the bastard enjoyed burning in hell like the devil he was.
She made her way back through the crowd, bodies brushing her, knocking her, pressing her to and fro until it was difficult to keep her balance. She swore softly and clung to the railing blocking the dance floor from the rest of the chaos. If she could just catch Dar’s eye. Asking for help stuck in her throat, but she’d prefer to beg than end up on her butt on the floor.
An additional body now sat at the table in the seat she’d abandoned and Beth prayed with three guys vying for her attention, her sister would remember not to leave her behind.
She waved, catching one of the twin’s eyes, which one she couldn’t tell. He nodded and rose, and she sighed in relief. The idea of fighting her way across the room left her aching. Then the newcomer stood as well and pivoted, his dark eyes seeking her out.
Her mouth went dry.
Oh my. If she’d thought the twins were good looking, this specimen was dazzling. He was still young, probably younger than her, but on him the tantalizing features of the other boys had matured, soft edges now harder, more pronounced. There was no doubt he was a member of the six-pack they’d spoken about. Whatever else the family raised out on that ranch of theirs, the men were certainly impressive.
She lifted her chin, her pulse quickening as the older cowboy waved his brother down and made his way to her side. People seemed to part before him and Beth got an eyeful of long, muscular limbs and smooth controlled motion as he approached. Suddenly her little side reason for the trip to the bar got pulled off the backburner and back into play.
She’d spent the past six months rebuilding her life. While there were still huge holes in her world, learning to retake control of her sexuality had finally made it toward the top of the to-do list. After years of dreading her husband’s touch, she needed to know if she could stand physical contact with a man. The cowboy she was drooling over looked like a fine volunteer to experiment with–if she could get past her fears and seduce him, or at least attempt to. If she had to call it off in mid-play, this was a safe site. He’d never be able to track her down, or figure out her real identity. She’d never have to see him again.
He landed at her side and dipped his head in greeting.
“Daniel Coleman. Can I give you a hand?” He offered his arm and she took it gratefully. The fragrance of his aftershave made her perk up. Her husband had never used any cologne. Claimed a real man didn’t need anything but soap and water, and the gift she’d given him was thrown in the garbage along with a bit of her heart. Now this stranger wore the very scent she’d chosen for Samuel back when she was still young and thought she knew what love was. It had to be a good omen. Damn it, she was going to take it as a good omen because she needed one right now.
Back at the table it was a tight fit. Darleen now sat on both the twin’s laps, their three bodies crowded close together. Beth found herself seated next to Daniel.
The noise level in the bar increased and Beth gave up trying to listen to a conversation three feet away from her. She’d have to shout to be heard. She turned to see Daniel frowning slightly as he watched his brothers.
He smiled wryly at her. “Just getting tired of babysitting. Your little sister?”
She nodded. “Dar doesn’t bite. Your boys are safe.”
He laughed. “Then I’ll relax. You live in Calgary?”
Did she really want to tell him anything about herself? No. Hell, she thought that at least she could handle some small talk after all this time. She threw back the last mouthfuls of her drink and changed the topic. The conversation needed to stick to what she wanted to discuss. Somehow she had to lead him into accepting her proposition.
“What’s your favourite part of the Calgary Stampede?”
He paused and took a long drink of his beer before turning to face her. “I take it you don’t want to answer my question.”
Damn right, she didn’t want to tell him any of her personal details. There was no way she would tell him the truth. But the best lies were made of a pinch of reality.
“I just want to enjoy myself and take a night to be whoever. Do whatever. I’m not into exchanging life stories. Sorry.”
He nodded. “Understood.”
She looked him over closer. A small scar marred the skin beside his right eye, and she touched it without thinking. “You were lucky.”
“I deserved it.”
Her involuntary reaction to his words was to stiffen in defense. Oh damn, there were still triggers that were beyond her control. She forced herself to relax. He didn’t mean anything by it. He wasn’t talking about her and scars, he was talking about himself.
They were crowded on either side as people forced their way past to reach their seats. His arm draped along the back of her chair, just touching her shoulders. It felt way better than she’d hoped–the riotous fear she had expected wonderfully absent. She deliberately made herself rest her hand on his thigh, trying to make it look casual, trying not to show how much effort it took to not flinch away. He moved slightly and the individual muscles shifted. Firm muscles pressed against the jean material and she sucked in a quick breath wondering what he was about to do. Heat radiated upward, and her core tightened. The twins took off, dragging her sister back to the dance floor.
She leaned closer under the pretense of speaking quietly. Her nose itched as it struck the short hairs behind his ear. The scent of his skin, so different from her husband’s, gave her courage. That wonderful mixture of man and aftershave, slightly rough, slightly wild. Damn. Her nipples tightened and between her legs her body ached.
Okay, that was a good sign. The whole libido thing wasn’t completely broken…
“Dar’s going to have a hard time picking which one of them she likes better, you know.”
His shoulder pressed against her body as he leaned back, twisting his head to the side to reach her ear. He sighed, the warm air tickling her skin. “Are you going to go ballistic if I tell you they’re going to try their best to get her to pick them both?”
She choked before pulling back to look him in the eye. “Hello?”
Daniel grimaced. “They won’t force anything, but they like having one girl between the two of them. I don’t get it, I don’t understand it. But they’ve always been like that and so far I haven’t heard any complaints.”
She sat shocked for a moment, turning to watch the slow-dance taking place on the floor. There were more than enough bodies to explain why the three of them had to be dancing so close, but sure enough, the younger Colemans had trapped Darleen on two sides. Beth debated for a moment, her heart pounding. What if…
No, she couldn’t start imaging what if her sister suddenly had to deal with two men who were overly aggressive. Not all men were like Samuel. If Dar wanted to cut loose tonight, hell if big sister was going to stop her. Life was short, and she should take what fun she could.
“More power to them.” She said it quietly, but she knew he’d heard. He relaxed, his arm brushing her again. Onto other important issues. It was now or never, because she was one second away from fleeing altogether. “What about you, Daniel?” She pressed her hand against his thigh, letting the weight of it slowly brush the surface of his jeans. If she had the courage she would have reached toward his crotch, but that was impossible. This was as deliberate as she could get.
She held her breath waiting for his reaction. Would he ridicule her? Brush her aside?
He stared at her for a full minute and heat crept up her neck. It was one thing to act the hussy, and another to pull it off. Fine. The whole plan had been rotten from the word go. She dropped her eyes and retreated. She would have withdrawn her hand when he grasped her wrist, locking it in place with a steely grip. She bit her lip to hide the gasp of fear that wanted to escape, but his grasp, while it held her immobile, was gentle on her skin.
With a slow but deliberate motion he tugged her hand over his lap. He opened her fingers, curling them around his length. His erection bulged, a solid ridge under the fabric. She felt him grow firmer beneath the zipper.
He leaned in. “I’m not usually the type for this kind of thing, but if you’re asking for a little something on the wild side, hell yeah, I can oblige you. I don’t know why someone like you isn’t getting well taken care of already. For tonight, if you want me to make you happy, I’ll do my damndest.”
She swallowed hard, his hand trapping her. No escape. Demanding. Her heart fluttered with fear and she closed her eyes to stop the shaking. Okay, this was why she was doing this, in public. It was safe. All she had to do was say stop and it would be over.
His grip loosened and he stroked his fingers over hers, a fleeting touch with the back of his hand caressing her skin. The coarse hair on his arm tickled her as he moved past her wrist, his body tight to hers, his lips hovering over her ear. The loud beat of music shook the room. The table. Her body. It had to be the music; it wasn’t her pulse making her shake so hard.
The warmth of his breath brushed her neck, sending a shiver through her. “You sure–completely sure–about this?” He drew back and cupped her chin in his hand, supporting her without locking her in place. “I’ve been around a lot of animals in my lifetime, and I know when one’s skittish. You may have the most come-hither attitude and sexy stare I’ve ever seen, but your body is telling me a different story.”
Beth wiggled uncomfortably but refused to drop her gaze. She had to bluff her way out of this. She was a grown woman, she was taking back control of her life. It was a step she wanted to take and she could handle it. Couldn’t she?
His gaze descended her body, an intimate caress without physical contact. “What’s it going to be? Do I grab my brothers and we pop you and your sister in cab so you get safely home? Or do you really want to have a little company tonight? Shoot straight with me. I won’t accept any lies.”
She licked her lips and his eyes darkened, his stare solid on her mouth. She stuttered for a second, then swallowed and took a deep breath. Part of the truth burst out.
“I need this. I need to know…” She couldn’t maintain eye contact anymore and buried her head in his shoulder. Shit. It had been a stupid idea to begin with, and there was no getting around it. Now she sounded desperate, which she was, but actually acknowledging it was brutally difficult.
He’d turned out to be exactly the kind of person she needed for a one-night stand, compassionate and caring. Something inside her cringed a little with disgust at herself. When she thought about the fact she was using him as an experiment she felt dirtier than when she’d first come up with the idea.
He stood and helped her to her feet.
“What are you doing?”
“I thought we could dance.” He moved slowly through the masses, leading her away from the crowded floor toward the bathrooms. There was a small landing kitty corner to the ladies room door, and he guided her there before pulling her into his arms and wrapping her close. She hid her face again, fear and rising desire fighting in her body. They were only steps away from the crowd. A constant stream of women passed by. If she got frightened she’d have help in an instant.
She relaxed, just a tiny bit and let her arms snake around his torso.
“Hmm, that’s better. You’re not going to bolt on me now, are you?”
She shook her head. “Feels nice.”
He swayed with her, every inch in contact. Her cheek rested on his collar, letting his fragrance fill her head. Why was it that the smell of the man turned her on so much?
His heartbeat–she felt it against her chest. He adjusted them, somehow bringing her closer until they were intimately lined up, his erection now nudging her belly. “I still need to hear what you want, Beth. If it’s a dance, I’m happy. If more…say the word.”
Oh God, he shifted his hands down her back, caressing, teasing. She sucked in air like it was courage. “I want something. I don’t know what to tell you.”
He lifted her face to his, their bodies still swaying, hips in intimate contract. Slowly, with lots of time for her to retreat, he lowered his head and brushed their lips together. A single touch. Chaste. When he pulled back, she followed him without intending to, wanting more.
A bright light shone in his dark eyes as he examined her face. “That was something. Was it enough?”
She took it as a good sign that she definitely wanted more. “No.”
“So tell me.”
She hissed in frustrated. “Please.”
He had a wicked smile. She’d noticed his good looks, but the smile turned his whole face into sin incarnate.
“You’re having trouble articulating, darling. How about I give you a multiple choice. You look like the type who enjoys options.”
He kissed her again. Light. Fleeting. The bathroom door opened and closed but Beth barely noticed. There could have been an audience standing around them and she wouldn’t have cared.
“You want a kiss?” He brushed a thumb over her lips and brought it back to his mouth, licking the moisture from the pad. “Hmm, you taste good. You want me to kiss you for real? Like a man kisses his woman? Or are you happy with more pecks like you give your neighbour at the church picnic?”
She swore she spoke aloud. She knew her lips moved, but the deafening buzzing in her ears outweighed the sound of her own voice. Daniel gave her another of his sexier-than-sin grins and came back for a third pass. She closed her eyes and hoped like hell she’d said door number one.
He gripped her body tighter and lifted her, heavy brace and all, and she gasped in surprise. Then he tore the rest of the air from her lungs as he consumed her. Crushing their lips together, he thrust his tongue into her mouth and took control. She waited for panic to descend, but all she felt was a heavy pulse between her legs and the urgent desire to drop to the floor and rip off his clothes. She opened to him, accepted his demands. Clung to his neck and writhed shamelessly against him. He held her up, cupping her by the ass and now the cold of the wall met her shoulders. He leaned into her, supporting her with his torso and hands, pulsing with small movement so the ridge of his erection ground against the apex of her mound where the blood beat with an insane tempo.
He tasted fantastic. Clean and fresh, the hint of hops on his tongue from the beer, but beyond that nothing but heat and passion. Tingles spread across her belly from the constant pressure on her clit. When he lowered her slowly to the floor she whimpered, suddenly fearful he’d leave her at this point, frustrated and all alone again with nothing but her own hand to bring her over the edge.
He caged her against the wall, his lips brushing her ear, the arm away from the bar sneaking between their bodies until he cupped her breast in his hand. “Option number two. You want me to touch you over your clothes, or put my fingers on your bare flesh?” He licked her earlobe and tugged at her blouse, pulling it loose from the waist of her skirt.
“Skin.” This was insane. She’d gone insane. This was no longer an exercise to discover if she could bear physical contact with a man again. It was a torture method to see how much her body could take before she exploded from the mere thought of a caress.
Whisper light, seductively slow. Inch by inch his hand crept up her waist, strumming the curve of her ribs gently like piano keys, lifting the bottom edge of her bra and forcing it out of his way. He cupped her, his palm calloused and rough but so tender and careful she shivered. He distracted her with strokes of his tongue against hers as his fingers plucked her nipple to a hard peak.
“God, you’re driving me mad.” He rolled her aching nipple between thumb and forefinger and a piercing flash shot straight between her legs.
“More.” Beth ached. It wasn’t enough to have confirmation she could be touched. She wanted to come and she wanted Daniel to be the one who brought her over the peak. It had been too long, and something in this man made her think he’d understand if she told him what she truly needed. Why.
“Get a room!”
Laughter burst out behind them. Daniel twisted, covering her with his body, protecting her from the giggling girls exiting the bathroom and traipsing back onto the dance floor.
A cold flush raced over her. What was she thinking? Groping in a hallway with a stranger. All the passion she’d felt, the sense of being truly alive, drained from her like air from a balloon. She struggled back and fumbled to put herself back in order–her bra, her blouse. He helped her, his hands far more careful and slow, redoing the buttons that had slipped open, tucking her hair behind her ear.
“Beth. Don’t. Don’t start thinking this was a mistake.”
She looked up at him in astonishment. “How did you–?”
He brushed a hand over her cheek and she stilled again, her skin burning hot. “The only mistake was thinking a short encounter in a back hall would be enough. I’m not that type.” He shook his head, his eyes fixed on hers. “I don’t think you’re that type either. Not really.”
She hesitated, then nodded reluctantly. He deserved at least that much honesty. It was all she was willing to give.
“Let me get to know you better. We know we’ve got the chemistry. I’d like to find out who you are when you’re not trying to be someone else.”
Every word drove another nail into her guilty conscious. “Sure. Let’s go back to the table. Darleen must be wondering where I am.”
He kissed her once more and she took it eagerly. Trying to store up the memory of his taste, the way he tugged his fingers through her hair just right. None of the fear she’d expected was there. When he pulled away she had to fight to keep tears from falling. He had no idea, but he’d help remind her she was free. Samuel had tied her in knots, and in one fell swoop, Daniel had cut some of the remaining cords that held her bound.
They headed to the table, but their previous space was filled with strangers. Beth spotted Darleen waiting by the door of the bar, a frown on her face.
“Shit. Looks like trouble in paradise.”
Daniel pointed to the far side of the room where Jesse and Joel tossed back beers at the long bar counter. “Double shit. Jackasses. I’ll whoop their butts if they–”
She shook her head. “Knowing Dar, it’s just as easily her fault. It’s only a night out on the town.”
He turned her in his arms. “It’s more than a night on the town for me. I like you, Beth. There’s something about you…” His eyes traced her hair and she flushed. Damn it, she hadn’t intended it to come to this.
Daniel pulled out his wallet and handed her a card. “It’s for the family business, but my contact numbers are on there. You can email me, or phone.” He handed her an extra card. “Write your number on the back for me.”
She nodded. He pulled her close and she used his chest as a solid base to scribble down her name. Beth Jackson. Jotted down a number. He took the card and tucked it away, his dark gaze burning a hole in her conscious. “I’ll call you a cab.”
She held up a hand, refusing his offer. “We have a car. We’re fine.”
Dar flounced out the door and Beth rolled her eyes. With all the other drama, dealing with her temperamental little sister was not something she had energy for. She took one last look at her cowboy wishing things could be different.
“Thanks, Daniel. It was great meeting you.”
He brushed her cheek with a kiss. “I’ll call you in the morning. I’d love to take you for coffee.”
She smiled and backed away, the relentless noise and the situation making her head and heart ache equally. “That would be great,” she lied.
The night air felt cool after the heat of the bar, and she sucked in a calming breath. Dar had already brought the car around and Beth maneuvered herself into the passenger seat, the leg brace frustrating and cumbersome.
“Where the hell were you?” Darleen griped. “I’ve been wanting to leave forever.”
Beth dropped her head back on the seat and groaned. She was sexually frustrated, her leg ached and she really didn’t want to listen to whining right now. “I thought you were busy. With two guys.”
Darleen had the grace to look embarrassed. “Yeah, well, they were nice enough. Then one of the Stampeders asked me to dance. I mean one of the linebackers from the professional football team. I had to say yes, and when I got back, the guys had left.”
Stupid child. “You went and danced with someone else and expected them to wait for you?” Darleen didn’t say anything. Beth rolled down her window and let the sounds of the city streets soothe her soul. “Can’t have it all, girl.”
Darleen flicked a hand in her direction. “Whatever. It was still fun, I guess. How about you? Their older brother was hot. Did you hit it off with him?”
A pulse still beat between her legs. Did they hit it off? Jesus. “Yes.”
“You going to see him again?”
Beth stared at the card he’d given her. She’d been clutching it like a lifeline. The dark look in Daniel’s eyes scared her, yet gave her hope, and for one moment she hesitated.
No. It was time for a total break. She tore the card into tiny little pieces so she wasn’t tempted to try and recover the numbers. “Nope. I’m leaving town with the boys in two weeks. Making a new start, and I don’t need any baggage in the shape of male stalkers, thanks very much. Been there, burnt the T-shirt.”
“Guys aren’t all like Samuel, you know. There are good ones out there.”
Like Daniel? She dropped the shards into the trash bag and adjusted her leg. “Enough. I want to go home. Mom’s bringing the boys by in the morning, so it’s not like we can sleep in.”
Beth stared out the window and wished more than anything Daniel were the one taking her home, and tucking her into bed.
copyright 2010 Vivian Arend
Go here to buy
Don't forget to pop by over at Viv's blog for a great contest http://vivianarend.com/blog/
and her website for more cowboy goodness including free read http://vivianarend.com/
Well if that don't make you cowboy hungry I don't know what will. And in honor of cowboys,for your viewing pleasure-
Thursday, April 15, 2010
And Of course I felt it my duty to tell all you good people that for today only RG Alexander's e-book Regina in the Sun is FREE as part of All Romances Earth Day Celebration. Just Pop on over http://www.allromanceebooks.com/ and put it in our basket, the discount is taken off at check out. You do have to register but they are having a free book a day til Earth Day so it is worth the few mins it takes to fill out the form.
Regina in the Sun is book one of the Children Of the Goddess series which I am currently on book 3 of. I highly recommend it, In fact If I was you I would pick up the rest of the series while I was there but hey thats just my opinion
Regina in the Sun is book one of the Children Of the Goddess series which I am currently on book 3 of. I highly recommend it, In fact If I was you I would pick up the rest of the series while I was there but hey thats just my opinion
Lion's Heat (Breeds)
The mating urge cannot be ignored...
Bad boy Jonas Wyatt knows it is fate that Rachel becomes his mate. He can sense it. He can also sense her reluctance. But she has little power over the mating heat of the Breeds. It is Jonas's destiny to claim her. And nothing will stop him from having his way.
( i snagged this from Lora Leighs website) Lora Leigh click her name for website
EXCERPT from Lion's Heat by Lora Leigh (c)...(unedited)
For the first time in her life, Rachel Broen was terrified. It wasn't fear. It was soul destroying, mind numbing, and silently screaming terror.
She couldn't scream aloud, it would draw notice. Notice that her tears and ragged sobs wouldn't draw, weren't drawing as she slid her unassuming little Civic into the deserted parking lot of the Bureau of Breed Affairs.
The night guard on duty had taken her pass without much notice. He knew her car; he'd seen enough of her to know who she was. It wasn't unusual for her to leave late, or to arrive early if she was commanded to do so by the autocratic bureau director, Jonas Wyatt.
The guard had easily accepted her hasty excuse that she'd forgotten to update his memos and his morning schedule, and that it had to be done tonight.
He hadn't noticed her torn blouse; the jacket she wore covered it. He hadn't seen the bruise she could feel spreading across the right side of her face, or the swollen condition of her right eye.
The blow had been carefully delivered.
Jumping from the car she felt the rough asphalt bite into her bare feet as she stumbled before racing to the door. It took two attempts to get her electronic card pass to activate the doors and release the locks.
A thin sob tore from her chest as she nearly fell through the door and ran for the stairs that led to the third floor and the private offices of the director, Jonas Wyatt.
Jonas. The manipulating, calculating bastard. This was his fault. He'd played too many games. He'd pushed the wrong people and had so erroneously believed they would come after him.
She tripped, her knee slamming into a step, the skin breaking as a ragged scream of rage and pain tore from her lips.
She was paying for it.
Oh God. She was paying for it. She was paying for her stubbornness, her determination... No, she wasn't paying for it. The bruises, the agony tearing through her leg, the ragged pain in her side from the fist she had taken earlier, the bruises on her face, they were nothing. She would suffer that pain a thousand times over. She would suffer the fires of hell if only her child was safe.
Jonas. He was here.
A strangled scream tore from her lips as she fought to breath, to race up the second flight of stairs. One more flight. Dear God, she was almost there.
Jonas was here. She knew he was. He had warned her that evening not to come to work tomorrow. He had known his enemies were tracking him. He'd known, the son of a bitch, he'd known and just as she'd warned him months ago, when they struck, it wouldn't be him they went after.
She had never believed they would come after her child.
"Jonas!" She tried to scream out his name as fumbled the electronic key at the door to the main offices.
Sliding it again, again, and still it wouldn't work.
"Jonas please..." she screamed out again, terrified he would ignore her, knowing he had to hear her.
He was a breed.
The lock released, the heavy steel door flew open, and nearly pitched her to the floor as the door to Jonas' office was jerked open across the room.
He's here, and he isn't alone. She barely saw the others though. She saw his face, hated and yet adored. His eyes, alive in his bronzed face, swirls of silver mercury as he jumped to her, barely catching her before she fell to the floor.
"You bastard!" An open handed slap to his shocked face as sobs tore from her, tears making her vision cloudy as terror choked her, ripping the breath from her body. "I warned you! I warned you they wouldn't strike you!"
How I got this book- well I wish I could tell you. I went visiting friends and when i got back My adorable 3 yr old brought me a stack of four lovely books and said these came for you so i opened it with an impish grin and then pointed to a shredded manilla-ish envelope. She had that thing torned to such small pieces I couldn't read the name and Grandma just shrugged and said she never looked at who it was from :( So if you sent me a lovely package please speak up I'd love to Thank you)
Ok so this was my first Lora Leigh book and I know for those up on such things, this is in the niddle of the Breed books so I'm reading out of order.
This book works great as a stand alone
I enjoyed Lion's Heat. Jonas is a strong shifter who gets what he wants and he wants Rachel more than anything. And her baby is a part of her so thats included. Rachel is a strong woman who knows better than to want someone as dangerous as Jonas. But she has to protect her baby and Jonas can offer that. Jonas wants to call all the shots and it's fun to see how he reacts when Rachel stands up to him.Lora Leigh creates a wonderful community that is struggling to find a place free of racial oppression. But the most adorable part of the book for me was Jonas stepping up and loving the child that wasn't even his, to me those moments spent alone in the night with the little girl made this book worth buying it was so heartmelting. The paranormal aspect of Lion's Heat made it over the top for me.Shifters Yum. I loved the medical part of the story as they search for the matching mating DNA and what did the bad guy inject in the baby. Can't wait for her story .
Now of course I have heard from readers of the Breed series that they didn't enjoy it as much as previous breed books. Have you read the other Breed Books? What is your opinion on the series as a whole?
Have you read Lion's Heat? What did you think?