Sunday, April 30, 2006

Left of Centre

Hi Everyone,

I had an interesting conversation the other day. I was telling a friend of mine that my son ferries phone messages to me, asks for money and seems to make all important requests of me…while I’m in the shower! No, he doesn’t knock on the bathroom door, he doesn’t yell through a gap in the door, he just strolls on in and has a chat with me while I’m aiming for some peace and quiet.

This is probably my own fault. I have no real reservations about nakedness. If I’ve been mowing the lawn on a hot Summer day, I will strip off, right where I am, and leap in the pool. I’ve also been known to go wandering through the house in my underwear, looking for the clothing I thought was in my cupboard but which, it turned out, was in the ironing basket. And THAT may have stemmed from the fact that I’m basically a lazy person, so if I can stick children in the shower or bath with me, and wash them while I wash myself…then I will.

My friend thought it was a little odd that my family, (husband and two children) don’t consider nakedness an issue. She told me that most people she knows would find my behaviour a bit ‘left of centre’. This has played on my mind. I’ve actually been worrying ‘Am I odd?’ ‘Am I twisting up my children?’

Since then, I have received a couple of reassuring ‘signs’. The first was in the lingerie section of a big department store. A mother was in there with her two children. The kids were playing amongst the racks while Mum shopped for new bras. Finally a small boy child’s voice asked “Mum, can we go now? This is boring…and disgusting!” I kept eavesdropping (of course) to hear what Mum replied, and it went like this… “This is not boring you idiot. This is underwear. Everybody wears it. It’s not disgusting, it’s normal, so shut-up and let me choose some nice stuff.” I chuckled and went happily on my way.

Driving home today, there was a campervan in front of me with a sign on the back door that said “If God wanted us to run around naked, we would be born that way!” I actually laughed out loud at that one.

So I’ve decided, that despite perhaps being a little ‘left of centre’, I’m no weirder than anyone else. What about you? Are there things you do that make people think you’re a variant on the norm? And how does it affect you?

Rebecca Williams

Saturday, April 29, 2006

The flip side

Last time I was here, we chatted about the things we think we should want, but in fact couldn't care less about. This time, I'd like to discuss the opposite – the things we think we should not want, and yet stubbornly insist on wanting anyway.

In writing circles, we talk about characters' secrets, and they generally have to do with their deepest desires. The standard advice for authors is to ask yourself, "What does my heroine want?" and when you have the answer and think your work is done, you realize it's not quite right, and you need to ask yourself, "No, what does she really want?" When you can answer that second question, you'll have a deeper understanding of the character, but you're not done yet. You need to go one level further, asking "No, what does she REALLY want?" and that's where you find the character's secret, her motivation, the key to understanding her enough to make her come alive on the page and to give her a unique and credible happy ending.

It's not easy to get to that final level of what the character REALLY wants. She may not know, herself. Or she could be in denial. Just as there are many things we're told we should want, there are many things we're told we should not want, often with a huge taboo sign plastered over them. And we want them anyway.

The sexual arena seems to spawn a number of these dichotomies. Some segments of society proclaim that women aren't supposed to be as interested in sex (or sexually explicit reading material) as men are. Although some women (not this particular blog's readers, I hope!) may buy into this view of what women shouldn't want, the recent explosion of the erotic romance genre is pretty clear evidence that women do want sex and erotica every bit as much as men do.

There are a number of other proclamations of what women shouldn't want that I find more troubling, especially when I can see some validity in the reasoning behind the "shouldn't." For example, I'm a feminist. I believe in the radical principal that all people, regardless of gender, are created equal. I could never write a truly retro heroine, because I can't fathom a woman ever deferring to a male simply because he has a penis and she doesn't. And yet ....

And yet, I'm working on a couple stories where the heroine plays out a submissive role with the hero, because that's what the heroine REALLY wants in her sexual romps. (Just to be true to my feminist roots, though, I also have one where the hero is the submissive partner, enthusiastically carrying out the heroine's orders.)

Which leads to my question for the day – what do you want that you think you shouldn't want? Wait, that was too easy. Think deeper, about what you really want. And now think some more and tell me what you REALLY want that you think you REALLY shouldn't want.

And the winner is...

Deborah Chan! Yes, I know you didn't mention "nookie" in your post, but I'm relaxing the rule. The thought of making nookie whilst bungee-jumping beats the band! Please contact me on aj@ajaymatthews.com to claim your free download of Mr. Grey and the Hotel Ghosts

Friday, April 28, 2006

Chat Win

Jennybrat, come on down and email me at xandra at xandragregory.com - you've won a little something fun!

Spontaneity

Cover by April Martinez

We've all done it. We've been out and about when the spontaneous desire for nookie comes over us and we just have to grab our significant other and head - where? Into the bushes? The car? Hmm! Or maybe a boathouse..?

Here's an unedited excerpt from the second Mr. Grey novel, Spirit from the Sky, coming soon from Liquid Silver Books...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The sun was dropping towards the hills to the west, but the valley had soaked up enough of its warmth during the day to take the edge off the chill breeze rolling down from the peaks. Claudia shaded her eyes and looked at Martin. "Shall we take that walk? I figure we've got an hour before dark."

"An excellent idea," he said, looping his arm through hers. "Fancy a walk along the lakeshore?"

"Fine with me."

They began to stroll down the gentle gradient toward the lake. "It's beautiful country around here," she said, looking up at the surrounding hills and mountains. "Do you have anything like this near where you live?"

He smiled and shook his head. "No. London has its hills, and the views from Waterloo and the different Commons are nice on a clear day. The Kent and Sussex Downs lie to the south. Now there's a beautiful place," he said, "lots of steep rolling hills and quiet valleys full of woodlands, small farms and orchards."

She barely heard him. Something made her avoid the words back home when she'd asked the question for fear it would jinx things. As far as she was concerned, wherever Martin lived was home for her. But America was her homeland; she loved it and had never left it - yet. Would he want to set up their home in England? He must have the same kind of attachment too. It would be a wrench for either of them to leave the land of their birth. She chewed her lip. No, it was too early to talk about setting up home together, even as she knew in her heart that Martin was the love of her life. They had plenty of time. It would have to be discussed sometime, but for now they were together and it would wait. It would wait.

"It sounds wonderful," she said, realizing she'd been silent for some time. He glanced at her and smiled but said nothing. She waved at the lake. "This must be a wonderful place for swimming in the summer," she said. "Can you swim, Martin?"

"Yes; I won school certificates for the mile, both crawl and breaststroke. You?"

"I only got my qualifications for the five hundred yard breaststroke and hundred yard crawl." She shrugged. "It pains me to admit it but I never really feel comfortable in water, you know?"

"It's nothing to be ashamed of, love." He gave her arm a squeeze. "Sometimes, just sometimes, it's down to a trauma suffered during a past life."

"Yeah? How come?"

"Reincarnation seems to carry a kind of imprint, which those with the right frame of mind or psychic talent can pick up on.

"A friend of mine had a real fear of heights. He couldn't even tolerate just looking out of a window at any height in a tall building. It wasn't too important until he got a job which he later discovered involved working in a tenth floor office once a month."

"Not good," she said sagely, kicking at a stone. It bounced over the ground to plop into the lake.

"No. He made excuses to put off the dreadful moment when he'd have to go into that office as long as he could, but he got so worried about losing the job he turned to me for help."

"What did you do?"

"I got in touch with an expert in regression therapy who took care of him. She regressed him to a previous life as a seaman in early Victorian times. This man was sent up a mast to repair storm damage but the damage was worse than it appeared. There was some kind of accident and he was trapped, suspended by a rope over an awful drop for some time before he could be rescued. That impression stayed with him into his next life."

"Ouch! I can understand that. Was your friend cured?"

"Oh yes. Once he understood the reason for his fear, he was able to tackle it with the help of a little hypnotherapy. He's as right as rain, now."

"Cool!" She looked along her shoulder at him. "Okay, Martin, you now know one of my fears. 'Fes up! What phobias lurk in your mind?"

His face took on an introspective look, and suddenly she knew instinctively that he was considering exactly what he should tell her. With a stab of guilt she realized the question of fears had more significance to a psychic medium than most people.

"You don't have to tell me anything you don't want, you know," she said softly. "I shouldn't have asked."

He turned and took her in his arms and kissed her. The breeze tousled their hair and seemed to carry the scent of snow. She held him close and looked into his sea-blue eyes.

"I don't mind you asking me anything, love," he said softly. "Yes, there are things I fear, which I'll tell you about in good time. For the moment…" he looked away, "I'll put my hand up and admit I'm not one hundred percent comfortable with height either."

She accepted his diversion from the topic and smiled as she slid her hands inside his coat and cupped his firm butt. "Why so?"

"I'm not sure," he said with a rueful look. "At least I'm okay in high buildings, unlike my friend." He rocked his hand. "It's steep places, high places without handrails and nice, safe firm ground that I don't like."

"Noted, lover." She kissed him. "Let's do a deal. I'll never ask you to climb a mountain high if you don't ask me to swim the river deep!"

"Deal!" he said, and kissed her. They parted a long moment later, and she could feel his arousal pressing against her.

"Now there's something I'm quite sure I understand," she whispered.

Some distance along the shore was a boathouse and a jetty. They made their way hand-in-hand toward it, of one mind and purpose.

Martin pushed open the door and peered inside. An odor of damp and pondweed met their noses, the smell dissipating as the breeze blew through the semi-enclosed structure. Beyond the open end lay the lake, cold and gray-blue in the afternoon light. A yacht was drawn up to the short boardwalk with a green canvas cover stretched over it and pegged down. With a glance back at the resort buildings in the distance he drew her inside and pushed the door closed.

She melted in his arms as he embraced her, her warm breath soft on his skin as she kissed his throat. Sliding his hands inside her coat, he reached down to cup and squeeze her firm butt. Claudia leaned back against the wall and brought her legs up to entwine them about his waist.

"I could get used to this!" she murmured.

"Mmm, so could I!" he said, kissing her.

She wrapped her arms around his neck and held him close, as he ran his hands over her body, feeling the supple play and give of her breasts under her heavy sweatshirt. His cock was tight inside his pants and the sensation was growing more uncomfortable by the second.

"Feel the need for release, lover?" she whispered in his ear.

"I do!" he replied with a soft moan. "God, I'm about ready to explode!"

"Let me down and I'll give you a blow," she said, unwrapping her arms and lowering her legs.

His cock gave an extra hard twitch at her words and he released his hold. Standing, she turned him around until they'd exchanged positions and he now stood with his back to the wall. Kneeling, she unzipped his denims and slipped her hand inside the inviting gap. He felt her long fingers seeking for his cock; her touch was cold but it gave an extra little thrill which made him gasp.

"Martin?" He blinked and looked down at her. She wore a mischievous smile. "This time I'm not going to spit!"

"That's…wonderful!" he managed to say, and she winked and drew his cock from inside his pants.

Her fingers closed around it and drew back his foreskin with a practiced motion. He felt the first delicate touch of her tongue-tip on the extreme end of his cock, a gentle dab as she licked away the trickle of pre-cum that emerged as the pressure came off it.

Then she engulfed him in a way that had thrilled him since she'd first done it for him in New York, only days back but seemingly a lifetime ago. Her lips enclosed his shaft and he could feel her tongue running all over and around it.

*

Martin's manhood filled her mouth, touching the back of her throat. His taste, his scent filled her mind, and she held his butt with both hands as she worked to pleasure him. She cast a glance upwards and his face was a picture of sensual enjoyment. His eyes were half closed, two slits of bright blue that looked down at her and he smiled and caressed her hair. Her pussy surged with warmth.

She bobbed her head and sucked him with a gentle rhythm, drawing her teeth over his rigid shaft, scraping his skin and making him shiver convulsively. The heavy purple head throbbed in her mouth, and she could taste the bittersweet pre-cum on her lips and tongue. There was no-one around; she could take her time and pleasure her man as much as he – or she – could stand.

"I want to do something for you," he said softly, his voice strained.

"Later, Martin," she said with a smile as she released her hold, "but don't worry. Your pleasure is my pleasure." She stroked his cock, feeling the moisture of her saliva on the tight skin, loving the warmth, the solidity of him. "Ready for a little more?" she asked, cocking an eyebrow.

"Oh yes!" he said, and laughed softly. "Damn, but I love you!"

"I love you too! Now, if you'll excuse me I'm going to have my mouth full for a while!"

Keeping her lips tight and moist, she drew him slowly into her mouth, simulating the feel of her pussy and stimulating him so he groaned anew. Setting to with a moderate rhythm she slid his shaft in and out, almost to the point of dropping free of her lips, before plunging deep into her throat once more.

Martin began to shudder, and she could hear his breath hoarse in his throat. Drawing back briefly, she said "don't fight it, lover!"

"Okay," was all he could say.

He was so fired up, so ready to spend. She swallowed him once more, striving to take him all inside. He gasped, jerked, and clasped her head between his strong hands. She had time to take a deep breath before his cum exploded into her throat, filling it with his hot musky essence as his cock throbbed and convulsed between her lips, the boathouse echoing with his cries of release.

"Oooohhh godddd!" he gasped, as his wits returned. "Oh, blimey, Claudia!"

She swallowed his cum with relish, savoring the taste as she stood up and held him close. His arms enfolded her once more and he held and kissed her ardently. "You're the best thing that's ever happened to me!" he whispered.

"I bet you say that to all the girls you seduce in boathouses," she chuckled.

Martin stroked a strand of hair away from her eyes. "Only gorgeous redheads by the name of Claudia Mackenzie," he said.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So where was the most unusual place you've ever satisfied the urge? No intimate details required, just the location! ;) The weirdest/most wonderful answer gets a free download of Mr. Grey and the Hotel Ghosts. Just say 'nookie' somewhere in your post if you'd like to take part...

Another Hunky Male (VIN!!!) Winner

Little Lamb Lost, come on down!! You are the winner. And since I can not get you a personal audience with Vin (sigh), you will have to accept a signed copy of Treading the Labyrinth, the third book in the Coven of the Wolf series.

E-mail me at raemorgan@worldnet.att.net and provide a snail mail address so that I can send you your copy.

Congratulations.

Rae

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Riding the Line - Excerpt


Thanks to Peaches for giving me the excerpt idea to post! And when you're done reading this scroll down to comment and enter Rae's contest for a prize!!!

Riding the Line - excerpt

Grant stood immobilized by the sight of Lindsay’s tight ass jiggling seductively and
the small red-orange tribal flame that kissed her lower back just at the crevice of her butt,
as she retreated to her bedroom. It didn’t matter. Nothing that happened in the past
mattered, and he was sure as hell glad that she had thrown herself at him. Hell. Before he
even knew who she was he’d wanted to bury his cock deep inside her. And that’s exactly
what he was going to do now. Fuck her until she forgot about her past and only thought
of her future. A future of nights with him.

In two strides he’d caught up to her and grabbed her around her waist. He hefted her
over his shoulder, her naked ass high in the air, and turned toward his bedroom.

“Put me down this instant you cretin!”

Her breasts pressed against his back as she kicked and screamed. She pounded him
with her fists, but instead of making him want to put her down, it sent desire rushing
through his body and straight to his cock. “If you don’t quit moving Lindsay, we’re not
going to make it to the bedroom.” He smacked her ass to get her to quit struggling.

She stilled, a high-pitched yip escaping from her mouth.

He smoothed the sting with his hand, trailing down her crevice with a finger before
gripping her legs firmly again.

“Tell me about the fire.”

“What? You’re crazy, what fire, put me down!”

“The fire on your ass, Linds. The one that’s making me burn.”

His bedroom door was ajar, and he kicked it fully open. The anticipation of tossing
Lindsay on his bed and filling her with his cock while he stroked that small flame kissing
her butt almost made him oblivious to the sopping wet carpet as he stepped into the room.
“What the hell?” He set Lindsay down with a splash and walked into the bathroom. The
scent of sandalwood assaulted him as he walked through the door.

Steam billowed out from the tub where the faucet was still running full blast.
Bubbles overflowed onto the floor and shifted with the waves his footsteps caused.

“Oh, my God,” Lindsay gasped from the bedroom.

Grant rushed to turn off the water and found himself flat on his ass.

Lindsay hurried in and promptly tripped over him, falling head first into the teeming
tub.

Grant lunged forward, pulling a sputtering and soaked, but sexy as hell Lindsay out
of the tub, landing on his back with her sprawled on top of him.

The sound of the water rushing dimmed, his soaked suit forgotten. The damage the
water was going to cause swept aside, leaving nothing for him to think about except her.
She lay still, like a deer in headlights, almost sensing the change in him and waiting
for him to make the move. Only fear didn’t show in her eyes, but heat, passion and
threads of love.

His heart jumped, answering those precious tendrils of new love. The words were on
the tip of his tongue, palpable, filling his mouth with the need to voice them.

Lindsay shifted up, her naked body slid over his clothed erection, and licked his lips
in a playful kiss.

He swallowed the words.

He plunged his hands into her soaked hair and forcefully brought her lips to his in a
searing kiss that left them both breathless.

She rocked against him, spreading her legs wide, her sex ready for him.

“Bed.” He pushed her off him and shoved her gently toward the bedroom. “Now.”

Lindsay scrambled to her feet and out the bathroom door.

He turned off the water and shed his drenched clothes as he turned and made his way
to the bedroom.

Lindsay lay draped like a harem concubine on the bed. Her legs open. Her pussy
glistened from her juices. Her rosy nipples were peaked and screaming for his touch. She
reached to him, beckoning him to her.

Like a sailor to a siren, he crawled onto the bed and into her willing arms, into the
cushion of her breasts. He nuzzled her neck, trailing kisses to the soft spot behind her ear
where he sucked gently before nibbling around her ear lobe.

“Grant,” she whispered, arching up into him, her hard nipples poking into his chest.
She wrapped her arms and legs around him. Her heels dug into his butt, pressing his cock
onto her wet core.

He pushed up onto his hands and surged up, his cock spreading her labia wide. Each
thrust forward he bumped her clit with his cockhead, then slowly soothed his way down
until his tip rested between her slick pussy lips. He thrust, then retreated, over and over,
until she was writhing under him.

She gasped and moaned with each tap of his cock on her clit. “Please,” she moaned,
meeting his surge with the tilt of her hips. Her body urging him inside.

Not yet. He wanted her broken from her negativity. Unwilling to let thoughts of her
past filter their way into this night, or any night after.

Up. Down. Up. Down.

The slick friction of his cock on her clit was sweet torture, but he wanted her to come
undone over and over, until she knew nothing but the feel of his cock in her, the scent of
him, the love he showed her with his body.

“Let go,” he urged, bending down to suck a rosy nipple into his mouth.

She groaned and lifted her breast to him, urging him to take more of her into his
mouth.

He tugged and pulled, suckling her deep with each surge of his cock until she cried
out. He backed off of her nipple, but kept up his relentless motion.

“Lindsay.” Grant bowed to her other breast and gently bit her taut nipple. “Let go,”
he said, his teeth still lightly clamped on her breast.

Sweat beaded down his back as he leaned forward, increasing the pressure of his
shaft on her clit and increasing his pace.

She clung to him, her hips tilting upward, matching his thrusts. Her nails dug into his
back and she let go. Her scream filled the room, her body rocking into him as her orgasm
ripped through her.

The Chat is Still ALIVE!

We're still there for any of you night owls! We'll be chatting until 1am EST!

Come see Me (Paige), and Rae Morgan and Jenna Howard is hanging too!

The Pink Posse

Another Hunky Male Pic


Guess who? If I have to tell you, you've been living in a cave for the last few years. Yes, I love my alpha males with a bad boy edge.

Post your comments on your favorite alpha bad boy, and I will choose one winner. The prize? A signed copy of Treading the Labyrinth.

Rae Morgan

Excerpt from No Secrets, Book 4 of The Coven of the Wolf series

Here is an excerpt from No Secrets, found the the Zodiac Pisces duet. I tend to write about alpha males and the women who stand up to them. I hope you like it. -- Rae Morgan

*****

"Debby, stop ignoring me. We’re going to discuss this habit you have of running away from me."

Debby opened the door to her place and entered. Boris stormed through before she could shut the door. She sighed. She just wasn’t in the mood for a lecture about what he expected or didn’t expect from her. And she wasn’t in the mood to mate with him either. Not tonight. The earlier mood, the pre-Ezra mood, had vanished with all the death and destruction at the mobile home park and the confrontation in the woods.

She understood Boris had been scared for her, but she was handling the situation until he’d barged in and taken over. She might have been able to question Ezra--or at the very least trick him into allowing her into his mind to read where Darius and the rest of his merry little band of murdering terrorist witches were hidden.

But Boris and Gor had cut off that avenue of inquiry.

Boris wasn’t the only person in this room who was pissed.

Of course he could read her every thought, which only added to the increasing strain between them.

He wasn’t happy with her. Tough. She wasn’t going to allow him to dictate to her in the real world as he did on the astral plane. He couldn’t have it both ways. She either did her job and used her magick, or she didn’t. And she couldn’t do her job if he tied her hands and restricted her ability to make instantaneous decisions as she had at the mobile home park. She had saved lives by going off to confront Ezra alone--she knew it and he knew it.

"Of course, I know it." Boris slammed the door, using an excessive amount of force, then locked it. The loud snick of the deadbolt shooting home echoed off the walls. "You shouldn’t have blocked me! I was terrified that the dark witch had you."

"I didn’t." Debby headed for the kitchen. She was starved; using magick took a lot of energy. "And he didn’t get anywhere near me."

"What do you mean you didn’t block me?" Boris dogged her heels as if he were herding an errant sheep.

"I didn’t. He did." She jerked open the refrigerator and studied the contents as if her next meal was the most important thing in the world. It was that or hit her mate for doubting her. That was what stuck in her craw the most--that he’d told her she was a key to bringing down the dark witches in Bear Hollow, and then he proceeded to doubt her ability to do it. He couldn’t have it both ways, damn him.

"Gods above and all the demons in the Underworld, he could block you? From me?" Boris stripped off his jacket and threw it against the wall, closely followed with a fist on said wall.

Debby winced and opened the freezer for some ice. His knuckles would surely bruise after that.

"Debby, look at me, dammit, when I’m talking to you."

"I would if you were talking to me, but you’re not." She wrapped some cubes in a dish towel and placed it on the counter, then turned back to the contents of her fridge. "Put that on your hand."

"What am I doing if I’m not talking to you, little hell cat?" he growled. "Knitting?"

"You’re yelling at me. I don’t listen to anyone yelling at me." She turned and glared at him. "Got it?"

The tension in the air between them built up like a teakettle approaching boil. The explosion came with a blinding flurry of movement from Boris. Before she could even squeak, he had her in his arms. Shoving her against the wall, he shoved his body against her back, his arm securely around her waist. Using his other hand, he ripped her shirt from her and sank his teeth into her shoulder, all the while growling in the back of his throat.

"Bo?" Her voice was shaky and came out low. Maybe she had pushed him too far.

"Shut up, bébé! I refuse to go through another hellacious half hour like I did tonight. We’re mating and that’s final. No witch nor man of any kind can interfere with the mind touch of a shifter and his consummated mate."

Pulling her into his body, he rubbed his all-too-ready cock against her butt. His hand slid hand down her naked abdomen and across the top of her regulation khakis to the juncture of her thighs. He rubbed the heel of his hand across the crease of her pants--hard. One-handed he pulled the zipper down and thrust his fingers closer to her heat. She was wet. Her earlier reluctance for intimacy now swept away with his blatant male aggression.

She couldn’t contain her moans when he sank his teeth into her shoulder again, then scraped them along the sensitive tendons of her neck. Every sharp, moist nip and bite triggered answering contractions deep within her core. Her pussy wept for more. Her body readied itself for her mate’s ultimate possession.

Boris licked and nuzzled her neck, now soothing rather than aggressively sexual. "I read your mind in the woods. You wanted to roll on the ground with me after I killed Ezra. You aren’t afraid of my animal tendencies at all, are you?"

Debby heard the underlying fear in his question, knew that he couldn’t believe that she accepted that side of him. "No, I’m not afraid of you."

"Why not?" He used his free hand to shove her hair aside as he turned his oral attention to the sensitive area behind her ear.

"Because," she let out a long low moan as the combination of his lips and teeth on her neck and ear and his fingers on her clit sent her sensual tension to another level. "Because you’d never hurt me."

"And why is that, bébé?"

"Because you love me." She groaned through a petit orgasm. "Just as I love you."

"Yes-s-s-s, exactly."

Boris let go of her waist and turned her within the circle of his arms. Taking her face in his hands, he kissed her eyes, nose and then took her lips in a deep, tongue-thrusting kiss. His body crowded her back against the wall; his pelvis matched the rhythm of his tongue and thrust against her. Her arousal spiraled upward and just when she could see stars and feel herself about to fall over the edge into a whirlpool of sensation--he broke off.
She moaned at the loss of his heat, his touch. "No, please ... dammit Bo! Finish it!"

Copyright Rae Morgan, 2006.

Excerpt From Repo Chick Blues



Here's a hot excerpt from Repo Chick Blues. I hope you like it!

I went in, got two bottles of beer, took a deep breath and went back out, handing him a bottle.

“Thanks.” He locked me in his calm, river-green gaze and I was helpless to do anything but stand there.

He patted the spot beside him. “Come on. I won’t bite.”

“Right.” I sat down next to him. My heart was thumping so hard I was afraid he’d see it through my top. I took a long swig of my beer and pretended to be interested in my yard.

Callahan set his bottle on the side table and sat back. I turned to look at him, my gaze moving over those strong legs, taut belly and broad chest. Before I even knew what I was doing, I was climbing on top of him, straddling him, and bringing my mouth down on his, the beer still in my hand.

He kissed me back, taking the beer from my hand and setting it down on the side table before I dropped it. His hands came around my waist and moved over my back, sending tiny shivers through me. I probed his mouth with my tongue, kissing him deeply, not able to get enough of his mouth. I breathed him into me, a little moan escaping my mouth as I ground my pussy against his stiff cock, the fabric of my panties growing damp against my clit.

“Leah,” he murmured against my mouth. “I want you so fucking bad.”

I sucked on his tongue as my fingers found and fumbled with the button of his jeans. His fingers did the same with my cut-offs and we both lifted up so the other could tug the denim down our thighs. I reached down, pulled the cut-offs over my legs and kicked them off.

“Holy shit, you’re brave. Anybody could drive up right now.”

“Uh huh.” I scanned the road in front of the house. The back of the outdoor sofa blocked us, but cars moved up and down the road constantly. Drivers could see my shoulders and face easily.

His cock was rigid and lay straight up against his belly. I grinned. “I guess you like me, huh?”

“Oh yeah. Just a little.”

I lowered myself so that my clit pressed against his erection, and moved myself slowly up and down over it.

“Oooh fuck, Leah. You keep that up and we won’t get far.”

Callahan slid down into the sofa and gripped my hips, lifting me so that I was level to his face. When his lips touched my pussy, I immediately pressed myself against his mouth, needing to feel his tongue on me. I looked at the street, watching cars go by. The mail truck stopped and a young woman began shoving mail into my mailbox. She glanced my way just as Cal sucked at my sweet spot, and I felt my mouth drop open as heat traveled through me. She grinned and gave a little wave. I waved back and she drove away.

Tendrils of desire swirled in my clit as he sucked it, flicking his tongue over it, making little circles before sucking it again. My walls squeezed together tightly, aching for release.

“I want you. I don’t care if we haven’t yet had a date.”

He gave me a loopy grin, his eyes dreamy, “Well okay, then. Since you put it that way.”

I took him in my hand and lowered myself onto him, sighing as he filled me up, caressing every nerve ending. The feeling was exquisite. “Oh…”

I tried not to rush it, but my body wouldn’t listen. I leaned forward, hands on his shoulders, and began moving up and down, faster and harder with each stroke. I watched the street, the cars going by, a couple riding their bikes, a woman jogging, all going past the house.

Cal’s hands gripped my hips and he lifted his pelvis, lifting me up and down with more and more force. “Is anyone watching?” His voice was breathless.

Two cars stopped to wait for a red light. One of them, a silver Volvo driven by a woman, carried a passenger; a man in a shirt and tie, his blond hair gelled into place. He turned to look at my house. Spotted me. At first his face looked confused, but then he smiled. He was handsome, and I grinned back as I continued to bob on Cal’s cock. “Yes. Red light.”

“Man or woman?”

I kept my eyes on the man. “Man. All dressed up. He’s smiling at me.”

“He knows you’re fucking someone.”

“Yes.” My voice came out as a whisper. My pussy grew tighter and began to quiver.

“You like that?”

“Yes.”

The man and I had locked gazes, and as the first shudder over-took me, I bit my lower lip to stop myself from crying out, keeping my eyes on the man’s face. Pleasure stuttered through me, almost blinding in its intensity.

I felt Callahan stiffen beneath me, he jammed himself high into me as my walls tightened over him again and again.

The light turned green and the cars moved forward. The man winked at me as his companion drove away. He never brought her attention to what was happening in the house on the corner of the street. I knew he never would.

I leaned in and kissed Callahan’s mouth. “Wow.”

“Yeah. Wow.”

More Eye Candy.


Josh Holloway anyone?

Fallen: Danielle Excerpt



Here's an excerpt from my latest Fallen book, Danielle. Released last November.

(c)2005 Tiffany Aaron

Excerpt:

Danielle laughed softly. The head archaeologist had a great ass. She ogled him as he ran up the steps. His faded jeans cupped his tight butt with nothing left to the imagination. She often wasted her time wondering what the rest of his impressive body looked like. She had the feeling Grant didn’t spend time thinking about her unless he was annoyed about her touching his artifacts.


A strange pull came from the museum. She wondered if another fallen had come that day. Having no interest in joining the Enforcers or unrepentant, she tried to avoid both. She thought about the vague sense of unease she had felt coming from Grant. Could it have something to do with the pull she was getting or was it his basic dislike of her?


She made her way into the museum. Flashing her name badge, she walked past the security desk. Making her way towards the back of the first floor, she glanced up at the two large elephants placed in the lobby. Smiling, she said a silent hello to them as she went by.


Wandering around the museum, she tried to get an idea of where the pull was coming from, but it wasn’t from the public areas. She went down into the employee only area and soon she found herself standing outside the archaeology labs. She had to laugh. Maybe her fascination with Grant was screwing up her fallen ‘radar’ since she knew for a fact the man wasn’t one of her brethren. Shaking her head, she turned and walked away. There was no way she was going to bother the man again today.


She decided to leave. Obviously knowing Grant was coming back today had made her think something was happening at the museum. She stood on the steps and stared out at Soldier’s Field. Pulling on her jacket, she took a deep breath and felt a sense of coming home. New Orleans was nice, but the problems she got involved in down in the city made her happy to get back to Chicago. Flagging down a cab, she decided to go home for a while. She knew her cat would ignore her out of anger and spite. Princess didn’t like her human being gone any longer than a day. She settled back into the seat and brushed her hair out of her eyes. New Orleans had been a learning experience for her.


When she was an angel, she had done all the right things and tried her best to stay out of trouble. In one foolish moment, she went against her normal cautious nature and she fell with the rest of them. Had she ever thought God would forgive them? Maybe He would eventually, but she wasn’t going to wait around for Him to make up His mind. She also wasn’t going to become a hunter for Him. There was no way she would prey on her fellow fallen. Pity welled in her heart every time she thought about the unrepentant. They had never found happiness or contentment in the world. They would always long for Heaven and their wings.


She watched the buildings speed past and thought about those fallen who hunted the unrepentant. Dominic had been the first Enforcer she had spent any time with and she wondered if he was the typical kind. She had thought Enforcers were as crazy as the unrepentant. Both sides were trying to find a way to end their exile. Enforcers did clean up so Mika’il, the Father’s archangel, could do his usual work.


A smirk graced her face. She wasn’t sure what Mika’il’s usual work was. He seemed to spend more time bothering the Enforcers than helping mortals. He didn’t visit her very often because she chose to stay out of the way. She tended to irritate him when he did talk to her. She didn’t hold the archangel in awe. She knew he had a hard time of it, keeping mortals in line and trying to keep the fallen from killing every one. Hard way to make a living she thought.


Sure it is, but I would rather be doing this. The archangel’s voice echoed in her head.


She laughed. Why? There has to be other things you can waste your time on. We’ve always been difficult to handle.


Difficult tends to be the definition of fallen. Mika’il was amused. Thank you for the help with Dominic. I want you to know he and Teresa are doing well.


Thank you for letting me know. They’re good people.


Yes, they are and so are you.

Redemption Excerpt


Redemption by Sherrill Quinn, part of the Zodiac: Pisces duet


Abby McNeil was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and now her life is in danger. She is assigned a supernatural Protector--Damon Stratham. Damon's job: protect this innocent from harm while remaining invisible and unknown to her. But Abby's an extraordinary woman and Damon's not one to follow the rules. Add a cranky archangel boss and a vampire Protector, and all sorts of mayhem ensues.

Damon felt almost a sense of domesticity, watching her putter around the small apartment, talking to the cat and laughing at herself. If nothing else, her encounter with him seemed to have lightened her mood. For that he was glad. If only...

He deliberately closed his mind to further thought. He was here to do a job. He was to make sure she was protected from the man who sought to harm her, a man who had very nearly succeeded when her former Protector had been distracted.

Damon had been given very strict instructions to assure her safety; he’d sat beside her as she lay in the hospital bed, both legs in casts, face bruised and swollen. She had been stubbornly determined to get well, and he’d fallen a little bit in love with her then.

Abby had been in the wrong place at the wrong time and had unwittingly witnessed a vicious crime. Not that she was even aware of it. But the man thought she was, and sought to silence her forever. Which was where Damon came in. He was her Protector, and he’d be damned if he’d let the villain succeed.

He stilled, realizing the import of his words. The veracity they represented. Never mind that she was his hope for redemption, another successfully completed assignment. He would accept the damnation of his eternal soul if it ensured that Abigail McNeil would be safe.

She was more than just a job to him, had been from the moment he’d materialized in her hospital room and had seen her lying so still against the sheets. Now, after having protected her for these many months, he knew he would risk everything to ensure she lived.

When she went into the bathroom and readied for bed, he stayed in the living room. Hearing the water in the shower running, he clenched his fists. He closed his eyes and had no problem picturing what she looked like. Her hair, wet and sleek down her back, curled slightly at the ends just above the rounded curve of her buttocks. Long, slender legs, once strong, now weaker and scarred.

In his mind’s eye, he moved around to her front. Her breasts rode high and firm above her ribcage. Each mound was tipped with a hard, pink nipple, begging for his mouth. Her stomach was slightly rounded, womanly. Soft, light red hair covered her mons and sheltered her secrets from his gaze. He could see her soaping her hands, running them over her soft skin, between her legs...

His cock rose and he stared in disbelief. Again he had an erection. What the hel...heck was going on?

The water shut off and he snapped open his eyes. He heard the shower curtain jangle open, and imagined her stepping out of the tub and toweling off. He wished it were his hands drying her. No, not his hands. His lips, his tongue. He would trace every drop of water, licking it off her silken skin.

“Poor baby,” she said, walking back into the living room. He stilled, then realized she spoke to the tabby winding around her ankles. She held her robe over one arm and wore a towel wrapped turban-style around her head... and nothing else. “I forgot to feed you. Come on.”

She drew on her robe as she went into the kitchen, but Damon had the image of her body seared in his mind. She was exactly as he’d pictured. High, taut breasts with soft pink nipples, long slender legs that melded into a heart-shaped ass. What he hadn’t imagined was the smattering of freckles across her chest.

He was partial to freckles. Fairy kisses, his mother had always called them. They made him want to kiss his way around Abby’s body, following that golden, inviting trail.

Abby fed the cat and got herself a drink of water. When she went into her bedroom, he couldn’t resist following her. She rubbed the towel against her wet hair, then dropped it over the back of a chair. Shrugging off the robe, she slid into bed naked.

Damon watched for a while, listening to her sighing breaths as they evened out in sleep. Slender shoulders peeked above the sheets, skin not much darker than the pristine white linens. He moved close enough to be able to see the gilded trail of fairy kisses across her chest. The little sprinkles disappeared under the sheet.

He wanted to follow that path and see if the freckles continued on skin that rarely saw sunlight.

Thinking of her lying there naked didn’t do anything to lessen his erection. He snagged the towel from the back of the chair and quickly walked back into the living room before he did something stupid--and forbidden--like slide into bed with her.

There was still the problem of his hard-on. Not bothering to question it any more, he took on corporeal form and unzipped his pants. His cock, the tip already pushing above the waist of his briefs, throbbed in its demand for release. He pushed his underwear down, hooked it under his tight balls, and gripped his shaft in his right hand.

His fist slid up, once, twice, then he ran it from the tip to the base, a quick brush. He imagined it was Abby touching him, light, soft hands moving slowly against his thick, pulsing shaft. With a sigh, he acknowledged that he didn’t need it slow and gentle. He needed hard and fast.

Copyright ©2006 Sherrill Quinn. All Rights Reserved.

Sacking the Quarterback excerpt

Here's an excerpt from my January release..Sacking the Quarterback. Enjoy!

Damn, Johnni’s got a great ass, Donovan thought. It was round and firm. Her jeans hugged her cheeks, making his hands itch to squeeze them. He had a second to notice she’d stopped before he ran into her.

“Put them on the counter. I’ll put them away.” Gesturing to the tray, she smiled at him.
He blinked. God, he hoped she hadn’t noticed him staring at her ass. He set the glasses down and backed off, reaching to adjust himself when he turned away. “So what do you want on the TV?”

“This is a sports bar, isn’t it? Sports Center should be on.”

He felt shock run through him. A woman who would willingly watch sports instead of soaps was a rare find. He flipped on ESPN and turned the volume up when he saw something on his brother.

“The Renegades aren’t saying much about the shoulder injury Jackson Klasek sustained in the conference game,” the anchorman said.

Donovan sighed. “Damn, I was hoping the reporters would ignore it.”
“So how’s he doing?”

He turned to see her leaning on the bar. “He’s sore, but it’s nothing he can’t deal with. He’s not taking pain killers though.”

“I watched the game. It looked like a bad sprain. Why won’t he take meds for it?” She brushed her hair up into a ponytail and he got his first good look at her breasts.

All thought of his brother shot out of his head. Her breasts were small and pert. He wasn’t a big breast man. He didn’t like women whose breasts made them look top heavy. Hers would fit nicely in the palms of his hands. Her nipples were outlined by her tank top and he wondered what they would taste like.

“Mr. Klasek?” Her voice broke into his reverie.

Shit, he couldn’t believe he’d drifted off and stood staring at her chest. He looked up at her and saw the hint of pink in her cheeks. At least she didn’t look mad at him. In fact, he must be dreaming because he swore he saw a flash of interest in her eyes.

“Call me Donovan.” He moved closer to her.

“Okay, Donovan. Why doesn’t your brother want to take pills?” She didn’t step away from the bar.

He stood on the other side and leaned into her space. There wasn’t any back up in her. When their lips were almost touching, he said, “He saw how hard it was for me to kick my addiction to them and he never wants to go through that again.”

Her breath was warm on his lips and he saw her eyes widen. A flash of pity and then a flash of understanding shone in them. He wanted to kiss her, but a crash sounded as the bar door burst open. He jerked away. He didn’t want any of his staff to see him hitting on one of his employees.

“Where’s Roscoe?” one of them asked.

“He’s sick. Johnni’s filling in.” He waved a vague hand towards her.

“Okay.” The others went to store their stuff.

Johnni stared at him and he couldn’t help but smile at her. She winked and laughed. As he walked past her on his way to his office, she grabbed his arm and pulled him closer.

When he looked at her, she said, “I hope you’re going to work up the courage to kiss me some time soon.”

His mouth fell open. “Umm...”

Her face flushed. “Of course, you might not want to do that.” She started to turn away.

“Wait. That’s not the problem.”

“What is the problem then?” Her gaze met his with a question.

“I’m just not sure.” Shrugging, he knew he couldn’t explain his reasoning to her when he didn’t know the reasons himself.

She nodded. “Fine. Maybe when you are sure, you’ll come and find me.” She kissed his cheek and walked away.

“I will,” he said quietly.

Tiffany's Eye Candy.


Thought I'd give you ladies some eye candy. :)

Yummy, huh?

Don't forget

The Pink Posse chat is ALL DAY,
so if you missed the morning session
come join us for the afternoon!!!

Is there a Dr. in the HOUSE?

Here are a few Wenworth shots for you.
What a hottie!
Enjoy!

Prison Break - HOTTIE BREAK!


Darragha and the pain of firewalls

Hello peeps

I can't come out and play today at the Pink Posse chat...until around 8pm Eastern/5pm Pacific. I'm stuck behind a hellish firewall at the place I lovingly refer to as my 'full time hobby.'

Please check back for excerpts, prizes and more during my chat...I'll be there scortched, but smiling, (as I'm trying to find a way around the firewall).

Darragha
www.darraghafoster.com

If you sign my guestbook and email your snailmail address to me at darragha @ gmail.com (no spaces), I'll send you bookmarkers! Maybe even sticky notes!

Blurb, Excerpt & Cover for Tempting Fate

 Clotho Moirae is weary of spending eternity with her two sisters on Mount Olympus.  More than ready for a break, Chloe craves a good vacation.  This time, however, she wants to go to the one place she's never been, and for good reason--one visit by a Fate has the potential to spark titanic problems.  What's the hot vacation spot that tempts Chloe?  Earth.   
   Tanner Danner had spent most of his life trying to watch out for his too-trusting innkeeper mother.  When she is brutally murdered by one of her tenants, Tanner becomes a hermit, shunning contact with humanity--especially the eccentrics who had been drawn to the inn.  Eschewing the family business, and with nothing much to hold him to life, he tries to find refuge in his solitude and at the bottom of a liquor bottle. 
   But when Chloe shows up at Tanner's inn, they both find that Tempting Fate has never been so good. 


Excerpt:

In her room, as Chloe was readying herself for a day spent shopping--ah, the glorious wonders in which mortals could engage--she was still chuckling over the fact that her host's name was Tanner Danner.
   She supposed she should stop laughing at him. After all, his mother had recently passed away.
   And why hadn't she known that?
   As a Fate, she should have been in tune with those around her, especially those who were coming close to their own mortality or had just lost someone significant.
   That she hadn't recognized that about Tanner immediately did worry her a bit. She held her cell in her palm and considered calling her sisters, but she didn't want to worry them.
   Instead, she tucked it into her purse.
   Apparently her powers on Earth weren't what they were on Olympus.
   She'd do well to remember that.
   And not tell her sisters.
   Grabbing her purse, she ran downstairs, called a quick goodbye to her host, and left the small Oceanside Inn.
   She made her way directly though the sand dunes to the beach.
   It was beautiful. It was still early in the day, but in a few hours, she knew that the beach would be full of people. She should know; she always had to keep an extra special eye out for snags in the threads of Spring Breakers. But she didn't have to worry about that right now.
   She was on vacation.
   Smiling to herself, she bent down and unlaced her sandals so she could walk unfettered through the warm sand.
   Her first vacation in a few thousand years.
   “This isn't your first trip to the ocean, is it?”
   She was shocked to hear Tanner's voice directly behind her. Apparently her powers were really out of whack down here.
   It was her first trip to a real ocean. They had ocean-like things up on Mount Olympus, but they didn't duplicate the salty sea air, or the constant yapping of seagulls. Or that smell. A few hours into her journey and Chloe already knew she was going to miss that smell.
   “Actually, it is.”
   “Really? Well, then, you've got to put your feet in.”
   He smiled at her, but it was a sad smile. It didn't reach his eyes at all. This man was really suffering and it was killing her that she hadn't known.
   “Race ya,” she said before taking off down the beach.
   She slid to a halt just before the water touched her toes. Turning, she saw Tanner strolling through the sand towards her.
   He looked natural as a beach bum.
   His blond hair was sun-kissed and several days' growth of beard covered his jaw. He moved naturally through the sand, not almost falling every other step like she had done.
   He was still wearing the faded jeans he'd answered the door in, but he'd paired it with a shirt so faded that she could barely make out the words Crab Shack.
   “How did your mother die?”
   She didn't mean to blurt it out like that. He almost looked peaceful for a second there and she had to go and ruin it. The expression on his face changed as surely as a steel cage had dropped down over him.
   He was silent so long that she didn't think he was going to answer. When he finally did, his voice cracked and he looked away.
   “I don't want to talk about it.”
   Millions of questions flittered through her mind, but even with her senses as dull as they were, she knew not to ask them. So she remained silent.
   She couldn't say she was sorry. She was a Fate. She was the one that had woven the thread of his mother's life. It was her fault that this man in front of her was in so much pain now.
   This was why her sisters warned her that she didn't want to come to Earth.
   When she opened her mouth, she wasn't sure what she was going to say, but it certainly wasn't what ended up coming out.
   “Eeeek!”
   Cold water hit her in the calves and splashed up to the backs of her knees. She took a step forward, but her foot got mired in the saturated sand.
   She headed straight down, face first.
   But then, instead of getting a mouthful of grainy mud, she remained standing, though she had thumped against something hard.
   “Omph.”
   “Water scare you a little bit?”
   Okay, so maybe she acted a little bit foolish. It was just a little bit of water. Things like that were bound to happen when you were standing with your back to the ocean.
   “It startled me.”
   For the first time since she'd met Tanner, he smiled a real smile. A smile that went all the way to his baby blue eyes.
   Wow.
   She didn't even so much mind the fact that he was laughing at her.
   “Yeah, that water, it can jump up and get you.”
   She felt the rumble begin in his chest; it was hard not to as she was plastered against him. Then it escaped--a deep masculine laugh that had her tingling in places that had lain dormant for a very long time.
   She wasn't a virgin; she'd dare anyone to live for several millennia and remain a virgin, but she could honestly say she'd never felt this way before.
   Tanner's arms around her, though she no longer needed his support, made her feel warm and protected. Things she'd never really thought about before. You didn't have to think about being warm and protected on Mount Olympus.
   His body was hard. She could feel the muscles under his shirt, though he hardly looked like a gym rat. And something there, below the waist, was getting much harder.
   Before she could stop herself, she whimpered.
   “Sorry,” he said, practically pushing her away. The laughter died and he went back to being that same closed off Tanner.
   “It's okay,” she said when she desperately wanted to launch herself back into his arms.
   “Were you going somewhere?”
   He took a few more steps away from her. He stood at the water's edge now. The water flowed over his feet, soaking his jeans, but he didn't seem to notice.
   “I, uh, I was going to meet a friend. We were going to go shopping and then to lunch.” She took a stab in the dark with her next question. “Would you like to join us?”
   Her heart sank when he gave her the answer she'd been expecting.
   “No thanks, but have a good time.”
   He turned and trudged back up the beach. She watched until he disappeared over the sand dunes.

Excerpt from Candy Hearts and Flours in I'm No Saint, Valentine

Hi all,

Here's an excert from I'm No Saint, Valentine, with Rhiannon Neeley.

In this, Mariah--a demon from Hell sent to Earth to find and seduce a saint--has seen Patrick as a man for the first time. She thinks he's the saint she's been looking for, when in fact he's an angel taking a second chance on Earth in order to save someone's soul. He thinks it's John's--the man Mariah mentions.

I hope you enjoy!

Then she heard it. Water! It hadn’t been in her dream, it had been in the little room with the white bowl. Setting the cat on the bed, she charged to the room. The sound of running water ceased, but she threw open the door anyway, half expecting to be swept away in a torrent.

Her eyes widened. Patrick stood in the long white box, perfectly naked. Emphasis on perfect.

“Mariah, what are you doing in here?” A cloth dangled from his hand but he seemed unable to move.

Droplets clung to his hair and skin. She’d known he was tall, but fully clothed he didn’t seem to reach the height he was now, in all his bare magnificence. Strong, sinewy muscles defined his shoulders and upper arms. His wrists seemed delicate in comparison, but his hands mysteriously held equal parts strength and tenderness. The columns of muscle forming his legs took her breath away, and his man-thing. Oh, my! She fell back against the wall at the size and thickness of it hanging between his thighs.

He was splendid, in every way. Mariah had seen many specimens of males in Hell, and none approximated the greatness of Patrick, in looks or stature. None made her feel the way he did, either. With a suddenness that staggered her, heat filled her belly. She licked her lips. With delight, she saw Patrick watch the movement. His man-thing grew in size and began to rise. Fascinating! She wanted to touch it. Smiling slowly, she pushed away from the wall and walked to him.

“What is this for?” She touched the cloth. Belatedly he tried to cover himself, but she took it from him.

“To dry myself.” His voice rasped. “Where are the pajamas I bought you?”

Tilting her head, she ran her finger down his arm, connecting the dots of liquid until they flowed in a solid stream. “I don’t sleep in clothes but I didn’t want you to think me unappreciative of the gift. When you turned onto your side, I removed them.”

“Oh,” he whispered. In a stronger voice he added, “You shouldn’t be in here right now. I’m, uh, I’m naked. And you’re naked, and it’s not right.”

But his man-thing rose higher, gaining girth and hardness. She placed her palm on the top and found it to be smooth and soft. Her fingertips explored the length of his shaft, drawing a deep groan from him. Hard as granite, long as a pike.

Full and heavy, her breasts ached to be caressed. She rubbed them against his chest. His breathing grew rough.

“This isn’t right, Mariah. I beg you to leave.”

The cloth trailed from her hand where she rested it on his shoulder. “Why do people wet themselves just to dry off, Patrick? And why use this cloth, when I am available?” Applying her tongue to his nipple, she lapped all of the moisture from the flat brown disk and then suckled him.

“Mariah,” he moaned.

Never had she felt such power. Who could’ve imagined domination would come so naturally? Patrick was a saint--she felt his goodness instinctively, and he smelled so ... clean, he had to be the man she sought. Certainly no one else in this hellish city except John came close. She could seduce Patrick. She knew she could.

Turning her attention to his other nipple, she managed to stroke his man-thing, too. Burning need filled her. The mechanics of seduction she knew. But she wasn’t prepared for how her actions would affect her. She’d had no inkling of the spiraling tension building in her or how the blinding need for release would grip her.

Patrick grasped her arms and forced her away. His breathing seemed tied to the speed she pumped his man-thing. It jumped in her hand and he cried out. “Please stop, Mariah. Don’t-don’t do this.”

“Patrick.” She purred his name. “I need you inside me. You know you want to.”

His eyes were wild. Harsh breath rasped from his throat and his hands tightened on her arms. “Don’t-don’t... Stop.” With a groan of surrender, he lifted her to the rim of the box and crushed her to him. His hips ground his man-thing into her stomach. Their mouths met and he ate at her, devouring her lips, thrusting his tongue inside to taste, and taste and...

A longer "first meeting scene" excerpt from Vampire Next Door

Val Drakul had two choices. He could either sink his fangs deep into the flesh of this woman’s luscious, lithe neck--and dispose of her deliciously curvy body later--or he could ask his attractive, half-dressed, uninvited guest to sit down and stay awhile.
He chose the latter.


“I don’t believe we’ve been formally introduced,” Val said, letting go of his prey and switching on the hall light. “I’m Val Drakul. You must be my new neighbor upstairs. Shelby’s cousin, right?”


Her face paled as he led her toward the living area. Her cat-green eyes widened with fear and surprise. “Y-yes. I’m M-Mel... Melynda Kerpanik.”


She stuck out a unsteady hand to shake. Her skin felt velvet soft and warm to the touch. Val clenched his jaw, fighting back an almost insatiable urge to taste her .
“And it’s not what you think,” she continued. “I heard this awful noise so I came down to investigate and--”


“You just happened to notice my door was unlocked?” Val raised one dark eyebrow and chuckled. “So you entered my abode to make sure if everything was all right--is that correct?” She nodded. He motioned for her to sit down beside him on his leather couch. Slowly she bent her knees and relaxed against its cool, smooth surface.


“That was very neighborly of you, Ms. Kerpanik.”


“Uh, thanks. You can call me ‘Mel’ if you like.”


The blush on her high cheekbones enchanted him. The white streak in her part, dividing her waist-length black hair like a skunk’s stripe, he found sexy, too.


“I used to live next to a little old lady who had this awful tendency of falling and breaking her hip,” she continued. “So I tend to act first and ask permission later.”


“That’s an admirable trait, Mel.” He frowned, although his dark eyes continued to scan her curves. “‘Mel’ sounds like a man’s name, and you most definitely aren’t a man. I shall call you Melynda instead. Is that all right?”


She swallowed hard. “Please do.”


“I know I really shouldn’t say a word about your nickname when mine is ‘Val’. I get tons of junk mail addressed, ‘Valerie’. Very few men are named ‘Valentine’ these days. I suppose I should change it.”


“No, I wouldn’t. It’s a good, strong name. And I love the holiday.”


“Really?” He smiled and settled back in his seat. This Melynda person was definitely worth getting to know better even if she was a mere mortal. “Would you like something to drink?” he asked. She shook her head no. “That’s okay. I’m probably out of everything except beer any how.”


She grinned nervously. “Typical bachelor.”


“Yes, I am. And I do have an appalling habit of not locking my doors at times. I don’t expect too many night visitors, so when I go out on a shoot I forget to throw the bolt.”


“A shoot?”


“Photos. I’m a photographer.”


“Yes, so Shelby told me. I noticed some fantastic cityscapes in your darkroom.”


He lifted one curious eyebrow. “Why, thank you. Do you happen to have one of my calendars?”


“Calendar?” Her green eyes widened. “You posed for a calendar?”


“No, I don’t model.”


The endearing blush crept up her cheeks once again. She demurely pulled her robe tighter across her more-than-ample breasts. Val forced his hungry gaze away from his attractive guest’s obvious charms and returned to discussing the topic at hand.


“I shoot a yearly cityscape calendar of St. Louis. Would you like one? I have several promotional copies in my study.”


“Oh, yes, I’d love one.”


Val rose and swiftly exited the living area before Mel could exhale her long-held breath.
What the hell am I doing chitchatting with my devastatingly handsome neighbor at three in the morning? She was certifiably mental. But she couldn’t seem to help herself. She was hooked.


The man couldn’t get any better looking if he tried. Even his name sounded sexy: Drah-kool. The way he said it sent orgasmic sparks zinging along her spine. She couldn’t quite place the accent, but wherever he was from originally the women there were mighty fortunate.


His muscular backside had intrigued her in the moonlight. But now that she could enjoy his face close up his aquiline profile fascinated her to no end. Dark, obsidian eyes glowed with an inner spark above chiseled cheekbones and a smooth, square jaw line. When he looked at her it was if he could see right through her and glimpse the throbbing pulse of her heart. His wavy, shoulder length, jet-black hair was to die for. His slightly olive skin tone denoted perhaps some Mediterranean or Eastern European ancestry? Either way, it was amazing Hollywood hadn’t scooped up a stud like him and put him in pictures.


Sex appeal--Val Drakul simply overflowed with it. His full lips looked like they were made to kiss and to be kissed--passionately and frequently. And his smile? Closed mouth yet quirky. Like he laughed with confidence at all life threw at him and then some. Like he knew his own mind. Like he enjoyed a good beer, a good smoke, a good woman...
Mel pulled her silk robe tighter across her peaking breasts. The mere thought of making love to Val Drakul made her knees turn to Jell-O. It had been too long--way too long--since she’d been with a man.


That damn cheating ex of hers gotten it from both her and his man-stealing girlfriend for a time, but she’d been living the life of a nun since their marriage broke up. Her luscious-buns neighbor probably didn’t suffer at all in that particular department. She didn’t want his pity.


There was no need for Val Drakul to learn that she was a lonely, undersexed, unemployed art teacher from Kansas. She had to get out of here. She’d take her free calendar, wish him goodnight and run the hell back upstairs before she wet his nice leather couch thinking how amazing he must look without his clothes on.


“Here you go.” Mel stood as Val returned to the living room and handed her a large, glossy calendar. “About half are in color and half in black and white. I prefer the black and white shots myself, but the publisher always insists on at least six of the twelve in color.”


Mel flipped through the pages, mesmerized by his talent and technique. In the thrill of discovering another artist’s work, she completely forgot about her desire to depart.
“How breathtaking! They’re simply beautiful. I love your black and white photos, too. Has Shelby talked to you about doing some art photography for the lofts upstairs?”


Val looked decidedly uncomfortable for a split second before his charming smile reasserted itself. “Yes, she has. But I declined. I have more than enough business with the calendar shots, my own gallery showings and the occasional freelance opportunity. Maybe some other time.”


“Too bad. I was thinking of doing at least one of the lofts up in a cool black, white and metallic gray scheme and your photos would be superb accents. You sure you won’t reconsider? They wouldn’t have to be new photos--they could be reprints.”


She turned back to October’s picture of a huge, blood-red harvest moon hanging over the Arch, illuminating it and the river beyond with an eerie orange glow. “I could really see this photo blown up to a good wall-picture size hanging over a dining table.”


Quick, like a cat, he stood beside her, glancing over her shoulder. Mel shivered slightly and felt the dampness between her legs growing.


“Ah, yes. That’s one of my favorites. I wouldn’t mind seeing my Halloween photo framed and hanging on a wall rather than in just a calendar. Let me talk to my publisher about the reprint rights.”


“Fantastic.” She beamed a smile in thanks at him. “It will make my decorating job that much easier.”


“No promises. But I will try,” he said softly.


Mel turned slightly, examining the handsome visage mere inches from her own. Those lips... those eyes. She could see herself taking Val’s strong chin in her hand and tilting his head just a little toward hers and then… Vivid images of her and her newly introduced neighbor moving together as one between satin sheets flooded her mind. It was as if it their joining had already happened—or would happen—and she had no control of how fate would bring them together for better or worse.


“Melynda? Are you all right?” Concern etched itself across his features. He reached out to touch her shoulder.


“Me? I’m fine.” She shook her head and rubbed her temples, inching away from him. The disturbing feeling of déjà vu quickly passed. She’d only been in the Twilight Zone for a few seconds this time. Why she hadn’t outgrown these occasional psychic daytrips was beyond her. “It’s late, and I’m not thinking too clearly. I’d better go now.”


“Yes, you’d better. Unless...”
“Unless?”


She looked deep into his eyes and then she knew--she could never leave him.


“Unless you’d feel safer staying here tonight.” His rich baritone enveloped her like a cloud, drawing her further into its mists; his intense, dark eyes plumbed the depths of her soul.


“I mean, this is an old building and there are lots of strange noises. The vast majority of them are innocuous, but...” He shrugged.


She swallowed hard, licking suddenly dry lips. “You mean there’s something in the building that isn’t harmless?”


“Yes. Me.”

Help! I’m Falling for the Vampire Next Door…coming soon from Liquid Silver Books: http://www.liquidsilverbooks.com/

Celine Chatillon

Some like it hot. Some like it hotter. And some enjoy a fun, steamy read from Celine Chatillon. What kind of reader are you?http://www.celinechatillon.com/

A short excerpt from Help! I'm Falling for the Vampire Next Door

Help! I'm Falling for the Vampire Next Door...

A quick synopsis:
Valentine Drakul longs for a mate, someone to share eternity with who won’t be totally grossed out living on a diet of steak tartare. Could the sexy girl living upstairs fulfill his every fantasy?


Melynda Kerpanik got the heck out of Dodge, Kansas, and ended up in St. Louis working for her cousin as an interior decorator. But will her career plans take a backseat to her curiosity about things that “go bump in the night”?


A deadly foe ensnares Mel in his evil plot to rid the world of Kindred race... Can Val save the mortal woman he loves without transforming her into the eternally lonely being he's become?


An unedited and unproofed excerpt from
Help! I’m Falling for the Vampire Next Door…


Mel rolled Val to his back and rained kisses upon him from his hairline to waist, savoring his nipples for extra treatment. He arched his erection closer to her full lips and cried out as she twirled her tongue around its engorged head until he could almost stand it no longer.


“Now, lie still and let me straddle that huge cock of yours and take it in slowly… for my sake as much as for yours. I don’t want to hurt you.”


Hurt him? She was afraid of hurting him? Val sighed. She could never hurt him… not like he could hurt her—eternally.


“It won’t hurt. I love you, Melynda. I want to be inside you, a part of you. Completely.”
Mel flung a leg across his hips and lowered her body until the tip of his manhood barely brushed the fine hairs circling her core. She swayed back and forth, enjoying the sensation as his hands firmly caressed her hips and buttocks.


“We can stop now if you like, or we can go on,” she murmured.


Val felt his fangs growing, lengthening. The heat of the moment and the scent of her soft, warm flesh were intoxicating, and together they dissolved his inhibitions. He felt the overwhelming urge to thrust his canines into her neck and drink of her goodness, to taste and savor the sweetness of her blood…


Help! I’m Falling for the Vampire Next Door…coming soon from Liquid Silver Books: http://www.liquidsilverbooks.com/

Celine Chatillon
Some like it hot. Some like it hotter. And some enjoy a fun, steamy read from Celine Chatillon. What kind of reader are you?http://www.celinechatillon.com/

Repo Chick Blues Sizzling Excerpt



Here's an excerpt from Repo Chick Blues. I hope you like it!

I went in, got two bottles of beer, took a deep breath and went back out, handing him a bottle.

“Thanks.” He locked me in his calm, river-green gaze and I was helpless to do anything but stand there.

He patted the spot beside him. “Come on. I won’t bite.”

“Right.” I sat down next to him. My heart was thumping so hard I was afraid he’d see it through my top. I took a long swig of my beer and pretended to be interested in my yard.

Callahan set his bottle on the side table and sat back. I turned to look at him, my gaze moving over those strong legs, taut belly and broad chest. Before I even knew what I was doing, I was climbing on top of him, straddling him, and bringing my mouth down on his, the beer still in my hand.

He kissed me back, taking the beer from my hand and setting it down on the side table before I dropped it. His hands came around my waist and moved over my back, sending tiny shivers through me. I probed his mouth with my tongue, kissing him deeply, not able to get enough of his mouth. I breathed him into me, a little moan escaping my mouth as I ground my pussy against his stiff cock, the fabric of my panties growing damp against my clit.

“Leah,” he murmured against my mouth. “I want you so fucking bad.”

I sucked on his tongue as my fingers found and fumbled with the button of his jeans. His fingers did the same with my cut-offs and we both lifted up so the other could tug the denim down our thighs. I reached down, pulled the cut-offs over my legs and kicked them off.

“Holy shit, you’re brave. Anybody could drive up right now.”

“Uh huh.” I scanned the road in front of the house. The back of the outdoor sofa blocked us, but cars moved up and down the road constantly. Drivers could see my shoulders and face easily.

His cock was rigid and lay straight up against his belly. I grinned. “I guess you like me, huh?”

“Oh yeah. Just a little.”

I lowered myself so that my clit pressed against his erection, and moved myself slowly up and down over it.

“Oooh fuck, Leah. You keep that up and we won’t get far.”

Callahan slid down into the sofa and gripped my hips, lifting me so that I was level to his face. When his lips touched my pussy, I immediately pressed myself against his mouth, needing to feel his tongue on me. I looked at the street, watching cars go by. The mail truck stopped and a young woman began shoving mail into my mailbox. She glanced my way just as Cal sucked at my sweet spot, and I felt my mouth drop open as heat traveled through me. She grinned and gave a little wave. I waved back and she drove away.

Tendrils of desire swirled in my clit as he sucked it, flicking his tongue over it, making little circles before sucking it again. My walls squeezed together tightly, aching for release.

“I want you. I don’t care if we haven’t yet had a date.”

He gave me a loopy grin, his eyes dreamy, “Well okay, then. Since you put it that way.”

I took him in my hand and lowered myself onto him, sighing as he filled me up, caressing every nerve ending. The feeling was exquisite. “Oh…”

I tried not to rush it, but my body wouldn’t listen. I leaned forward, hands on his shoulders, and began moving up and down, faster and harder with each stroke. I watched the street, the cars going by, a couple riding their bikes, a woman jogging, all going past the house.

Cal’s hands gripped my hips and he lifted his pelvis, lifting me up and down with more and more force. “Is anyone watching?” His voice was breathless.

Two cars stopped to wait for a red light. One of them, a silver Volvo driven by a woman, carried a passenger; a man in a shirt and tie, his blond hair gelled into place. He turned to look at my house. Spotted me. At first his face looked confused, but then he smiled. He was handsome, and I grinned back as I continued to bob on Cal’s cock. “Yes. Red light.”

“Man or woman?”

I kept my eyes on the man. “Man. All dressed up. He’s smiling at me.”

“He knows you’re fucking someone.”

“Yes.” My voice came out as a whisper. My pussy grew tighter and began to quiver.

“You like that?”

“Yes.”

The man and I had locked gazes, and as the first shudder over-took me, I bit my lower lip to stop myself from crying out, keeping my eyes on the man’s face. Pleasure stuttered through me, almost blinding in its intensity.

I felt Callahan stiffen beneath me, he jammed himself high into me as my walls tightened over him again and again.

The light turned green and the cars moved forward. The man winked at me as his companion drove away. He never brought her attention to what was happening in the house on the corner of the street. I knew he never would.

I leaned in and kissed Callahan’s mouth. “Wow.”

“Yeah. Wow.”

Sensation of the Seas - May 1st release! hot excerpt


Sensation of the Seas Excerpt:

Miklos endeavored to loosen his grasp and gentle his touch. It took a Herculean effort, but he told himself he didn’t want to scare her with the full force of his passion. Oddly enough, she didn’t appear to be frightened at all. She was fumbling at his buttons, and pushing his shirt off of his shoulders. He assisted long enough to remove the shirt without tearing it apart.

With his chest expanding and contracting in deep breaths, he gave her a moment to appreciate his dark coating of chest hair, and then he slipped his hand under her dress. He stroked his fingers over her thighs and listened for any protest. If she were shy about revealing her body, he’d allow her to keep her dress on. To his surprise, when he reached her waist, she wasn’t wearing any underwear and didn’t seem shy at all. She took his hand and guided it to her center then let out a little mewl as he fingered her bare mound and damp folds.

She reached for his belt and unhooked it as his other hand traveled further up her back too unhook her bra. She wore no bra, either. Cupping her breast, his thumb found her nipple and he rubbed it. Breathless, she grabbed and tugged at his zipper. “Miklos, help me get your pants down.”

He stilled her hand. “Wait, my love.”

“What?”

“Not like this.” He bent down to kiss her. The tender kiss seemed to calm them both. “I am anxious too, but this should be done with tenderness, love and respect.”

She was panting. “All right. But the second time, we can just shag like rabbits, right?”

For more about the book go to my website www.cyndiredding.com

Excerpt from LOVE & MAGIC: Grave Awakening

This one is hot...so 18 and over please...by Shara Lanel

Diera has just arrived at her aunt's house, which used to be her home, and she expects her bedroom to be exactly the same as when she left.

Diera hugged her aunt once again, following her outside. Once she’d driven off in her late-model sedan, Diera heaved her suitcase from her trunk. She stood on the street and stared at the luggage as if it could talk to her. Was this the right thing to do? She’d be freer to investigate without someone noting her comings and goings, but it wouldn’t even have been a question if she hadn’t seen the Wiccan circle last night. Finally she shrugged. She’d stay for a night or two at least.

Though it was a fairly small overnight bag, dragging it up the stairs to the third floor--her old bedroom--wore her out and reminded her that she needed to get back in the gym before flab set in. Still huffing, she leaned against the wide sill at the top of the landing and stared out the wavy glass. Why was old glass wavy? She really hadn’t a clue, but she could tell the replacement windows in this house easily, and this was one of the originals: thick, ripply, with tiny bubbles and a greenish tint. From here she could see glimpses of Hollywood through the tree limbs. In daylight it looked peaceful, sprinkled with tourists or mourners taking grave rubbings or photographs or laying flowers. Diera had not set foot through those gates since her mother’s funeral. She hadn’t wanted to then, but her grandpa had insisted on pain of disinheritance, not that she cared about any non-existent inheritance. She’d only done it to keep peace in the family and to show all the gossiping cousins that she was just fine, not visibly marked by the Devil, no “666” floating above her head.

Diera whirled away from the window. They were vicious memories, and the reason she didn’t visit Maeve as much as she should. When she was away from here, she was a normal computer programmer, her geekiness hidden under soft femininity. Well, normal except for her photography and her knack for finding people, which had to do with taking pictures of things she wasn’t supposed to see and sticking her nose where it wasn’t wanted.

She climbed the last five steps from the landing to the third floor and dragged her bag down the hall to the first door on the left.

* * * *

Holt always performed his rituals skyclad--naked in other words--and Maeve respected his privacy. Her bedroom was on the second floor, but she spent most of her time in the kitchen or the garden or her crafts room on the ground floor. She never bothered him on the third floor since he’d started renting from her two months ago.

He was once again seeking clarity and insight into his coffin dreams and the mysterious woman in them. He hadn’t been able to get her out of his mind all day at work.

It really sucked that the rest of Richmond got Sunday as their day of rest or of church at least, but his slave driver boss, Al Graves, had ordered his three graphic artists to get their butts into the office early and show him some stellar ideas for their current client, Privates by LeClaire, an underwear line for men and women. So Holt had left before having a chance to talk to Maeve about Diera’s appearance in Richmond last night. Unfortunately, none of the designers’ ideas had satisfied the boss. Memories of his tirade were making it hard for Holt to concentrate on his ritual as he poured salt onto the hardwood floor in the shape of a circle, lit a single candle, and settled into a meditation pose.

His room was sparsely furnished, leaving him plenty of space to perform rituals in the center. He lit a sage wand to cleanse the air and murmured the words to summon the Watchtowers. Once the cleansing was complete, Holt closed his eyes, inhaled deeply ... and swore. Not out loud. He didn’t want to invoke any negative magick inadvertently, but his thoughts whirled around possible underwear ads and how he might conserve oxygen if he were indeed buried alive. This sucked. He wasn’t going to accomplish a thing if he didn’t relax, so he resorted to one surefire method of calming his mind.

He opened his eyes, focused on the candle flame for a few moments, and took another deep breath. He closed his eyes again and placed his left hand on his left knee. With his right hand, he reached between his legs and cupped his balls, gently massaging. The goal was not arousal, which was sometimes used in sex magick, but simply relaxation.

The tips of his fingers stroked just behind his balls, then rolled higher to the base of his cock. Thumb and forefinger circled the shaft and pulled upward with light squeezes to the head. As he stroked, blood flowed to the organ and it gradually stiffened. He found himself picturing Diera’s face lit by the parking lot lights at Byrd Park, gold tinting her red locks, eyes shadowed, lips glistening. He increased the pressure and speed of his strokes, though still keeping them unhurried. This wasn’t about an end result. This was about clarity, seeing her, learning more about her. How was she meant to affect his life?

He knew one effect she was having on him already, as a tiny drop of pre-cum soaked his finger. He slowed his touches and focused on inhaling and exhaling, thinking about his breath and the air around him, picturing the candle flame. A new image entered his consciousness. Diera’s body skyclad except for a sheer robe hemmed with red velvet, dancing about an altar under the light of the full moon. She was beautiful, peaceful, and power emanated from her pores, as if it was the most natural thing in the world. She was a goddess, beautiful, seductive, ancient.

But that image faded into the mist before he could decipher its meaning, replaced by a far more erotic one. Diera still danced, but this time completely nude and not outside. She was in this bedroom, lit by candles, surrounded by a red aura, and her eyes were smoky, focused on someone ... him. Her petite fingers embraced one luscious breast, exploring both the feel and the feelings it created as she pinched her own erect nipple while he watched. With her other hand, she stroked lower, past tight red curls, into the V between her thighs. Trails of liquid glistened against her skin, tangible evidence of her arousal. One fingertip parted her labia, revealing a hot pink nub awaiting her tentative touch. Holt’s body burned and he ached to touch her, but all he could do was watch as her fingers stroked and she moaned.

*

The door opened and smoke circled into Diera’s nostrils. It was from a white candle lit in the center of the room and a charcoaled bunch of herbs sitting on a clay trivet next to the candle. Beyond the candle ... Diera’s mouth dropped open. Holy shit! It was a naked man--in her bedroom! Why was there a naked man in her bedroom?

She registered dark wavy hair, heavy eyelids, slightly opened mouth, strong cheekbones ... Oh, my God, it was Holt, the witch from last night. What the hell was he doing in her bedroom?

But, boy, he was a masterpiece! Sun-darkened skin covered Michelangelo shoulders and scrumptious pecs. He was sitting Indian-style inside a circle that seemed to be made out of salt, white and crunchy. Her eyes drew naturally lower, following the sparse curls of his chest hair to his divine abs, and lower still to...

HOPE YOU ENJOYED THE EXCERPT...

Shara
www.sharalanel.com

Hot off the paintbrush... Cover Art!


I can't wait to share this fabulous cover that the super-talented Lynn Perkins painted for my upcoming LSB title Help! I'm Falling for the Vampire Next Door. The lovely Tina posted it here for me. :) But you can also check the cover out at at the SIN forum or at my web site http://www.celinechatillon.com

And before you ask--he's mine--all mine! :)

I kept thinking of what she's backing up against... "Is that a roll of Life Savers in your pocket or are you just glad to see me?"

Tell me what you think about this hot duo and the Arch in the background. :)

Quick and Dirty

Just a quickie to announce my winners.

CHERIE, JENNIFERY, ESTELLA, DEE AND DEBBIE E
Ya'll email me at cece at celiastuart.com and tell me whic one you'd prefer--Once in a Blue Moon or Dancehall Diaries: Lynette.

And since I'm here and chatting at Pink Posse any second now......I thought I'd post an excerpt from Blue Moon:

“I got you something,” Ty said, returning from the bedroom.

Peeking over his shoulder, I saw the white carpet continued in there. Inwardly I shuddered. The place definitely needed brightening up. “Are you feeling better?”

And a part of me still couldn’t believe I was sitting in his living room. Had agreed to marry him. That he’d actually be mine in just a few days. My inner cynic refused to celebrate until after we said “I do.” Then, it would be real. Tangible.

Then I’d believe.

“Still tired but yeah, a little. I am, sorta.” He stopped about three feet from where I sat and said, “I’m gonna be a dad.” He chuckled, pushing his hair off his forehead again. A nervous habit?

I returned his smile, softening at the excitement in his voice. A mirror of the same excitement I’d felt the first time I heard the baby’s heartbeat.

He took a deep breath, then sat beside me on the couch. His words snapped me from the daydream I’d been drifting in and out of all day. “I suppose we should make this official.”

“Official?”

Ty held out his hand, motioning for mine. His calluses were rough against my palm. “Your nails are purple.”

“Cassi’s idea.” I laughed softly, my insides melting. I knew what was coming and was touched. At his excitement over being a father and his desire to do the right thing, despite his obvious nervousness.

“I hope you like this. I saw it today, and well, it just kinda looked like you.” He slipped the ring hidden in his right hand on my finger. The elaborate white-gold band was a perfect fit in more ways than one.

“Oh, Ty!” I blinked back my sudden tears, admiring the most beautiful ring I’d ever seen. A huge solitaire with diamond accents and a hand engraved band. I lived for different, unusual or quirky, and he’d noticed that, then taken the time to make sure I had a ring he thought I’d like--elaborate, girly and one of a kind.

The ring was a work of art.

“Do you really like it?” he asked, his voice low. “If you want a brand new...”

“No! This is perfect, Ty. How could I not?” I gushed. “Beautiful. The most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen!”

I threw my arms around him, pulling his head down to mine. The lava pit low in my belly began to roil as we kissed. I moaned, teasing him with my tongue and liquid heat seeped through my veins, eating away at the shell around my heart. I allowed myself to believe for just a little while. To feel protected as he drew me closer and kissed me back, his lips smooth and warm against mine.

His hand slid up my side to cup one breast through my blouse, his fingers brushing across an oversensitive nipple. I arched my back even as he moaned low in his throat and we fell back against the cushions. His lips grew more insistent, more forceful, until I couldn’t think.
Before we could finish our little celebration the phone on the sofa table behind us rang, jerking us back to reality. Ty jumped as if he’d been scalded and grabbed it.

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