For these posts, I’ll be giving an I Love Romance Blog score, not an official review, for books currently on my shelf at home (I know readers must wonder what books inspires us as authors) or ones that are on my TBR list (what I want to read so bad I can’t stand it!). For each book, I will give the blurb, a few lines from the text, then why I liked the book or why I’d want to read it. And for fun, I’ll give a heart rating! ♥
This is my scoring system:
I hope these A to Z Challenge suggestions will help you find a new favorite author, or further cement your love for one, if that’s the case.
Let’s jump into our next book, shall we?
Elsewhere by Linda Lee Williams
Genre: Paranormal Romance
When Errol Fleming moves in across the hall from Andie McNaughton, her life takes another unforeseen and perilous turn. Sweet, shy, and a bit reclusive, Andie has enough phobias to confirm that she’s “crazy.” Beautiful but imperfect, Errol bears his own disability. Despite the challenges their relationship faces, they decide to take a chance on each other.
Their future is threatened, however, when Andie hears a voice and dreams about “Noah.” She begins having visions of the handsome stranger and traveling in her mind to a mystical tropical island. Errol’s haunting dreams about the island and Noah’s obsession with Andie only add to the mystery of what’s happening…
Is Noah a figment of Andie’s imagination? Or does he exist in an alternate reality? More important, can Errol save Andie from the idyllic world she’s escaped to? Or will he lose her to her phantom lover?
A few choice lines from the book:
He leaned over to kiss her lips. They were dry and cool, not at all the way he remembered them. Her fair skin, which normally blushed at the slightest provocation, was colorless, as if the life had already been drained out of her, and her spirit wasn’t far behind. It made the deep bronze hair that framed her face seem even darker.
“Andie,” he whispered, close to her ear. “Andie, please hear me.”
Errol sighed in frustration. He had to find the right words. Words that could break through the barrier of the other world she had escaped to in her mind. Something he could say that would convince her she belonged here, not there.
His grip tightened on her arm, as if willing her to pay attention. “Andie, wherever you are, wake up. Wake up and listen to me. You can’t leave me, Andie. You can’t. I need you, more than you ever needed me. I know I’m not perfect, like he is…but I’m real, and what we have together is real.”
For a moment, he thought he detected movement behind her eyelids. He kissed her lips again, more firmly. “I’m here, Andie, and I love you. I love you, just the way you are. You’ve heard voices in your head before. Damn it, hear mine.”
This book is in my collection as well. I had the opportunity to read this novel a few years ago, and it wasn’t disappointing in the least. With a unique set of characters paired with unusual circumstances, this story is worth every penny. I loved Andie and Errol. I rooted for them despite every obstacle they faced. I kept wondering if Andie would choose her dream lover or stay in the present with Errol.
I have to credit Linda Lee Williams not only for her imaginative spin on the typical love triangle, but also for making me truly believe in damaged characters, that the most unlikely heroes are the best ones. Five hearts all the way for this stunning romance! 😀
Today, we’re doing something a little different. If you remember, we interviewed Ginger Ring’s character on November 17th and it was so fun that I thought we may as well make an occasional habit of it. I had the pleasure of meeting Eryn Black, the author of Kindred Sacrifice, on my author journey and I asked her if she’d let me borrow one of her main characters, Victor Titus, from the book. We’ll get a chance to talk to Eryn in a bit, but now we have on the stage…Victor!
Marie Lavender: Hello, Eryn. Please have a seat.
Character Victor Titus: Thank you for having me. Typically I try to avoid the public spotlight for obvious reasons, but I felt this was something I could sink my teeth into.
To begin with, I am Victor Titus, born 742 Bavaria, son of King Taviouse.
Marie: It’s such a pleasure to have you here!
We’re going to start out with some simple questions, all right?
Marie: What is your occupation? Are you any good at it? Do you like it?
Victor: In this generation I am owner and CEO of The Bavarian Interests Trust Enterprise, or BITE as my friends and associates like to call it. Along with several charity foundations we are well invested in real estate, Investment banking, medical research and the relocation and protection of Vampires seeking a new life and identity.
My skills are not necessary as I have the assistance of my partner, Donovan Pastor who oversees much of the paper work while I smile, wave while avoiding pictures and conversations.
Marie: I see.
So, tell us…what is your family like?
Victor: My Brother Alexander and I were raised to ride and fight with the hopes that we would carry on for our father, a Warlord king.
When I ruled in his place, my brother was the politician who remained home with his questionable choice of a wife. It is just my brother and I now, and despite the bad blood between us, I remain here for him if he should ever call. Although there have been times where I have been tempted to hoist him in the air, impaled on a spear.
Marie: (Clears her throat.) Well, all families have their issues…
Let’s try something else, shall we?
What did your childhood home look like?
Victor: A cold, dark castle in the Bavarian Mountains is not one I would call a home, but the fires were always lit to direct our father home from a hunt and our bellies were never empty.
Marie: All right.
Do you have any hobbies? What do you enjoy doing?
Victor: Poetry, swords, whips and tanning the hide of an eager and bound submissive would best describe my off time. I have enjoyed planning and hosting an exclusive erotic costume ball for Club Odyssey for the last three years. There is much to be said for the free pleasure in sharing your sexual desires with others of a similar mind.
So…what is your greatest dream, Victor?
Victor: She died long ago on our wedding night. I would not call myself broken, but there has been a part of me missing since that day. The opportunity to be reunited with a lost love in the great beyond is not something permitted for a vampire. The fallen souls of the good and innocent are out of our reach, but I still dream that one day I will find a way to be with my dear Sophia one day, but as my good friend Donovan tells me, “The universe is too vast and the undead life is too long not to believe in finding a second love.”
Marie: A wise man, for sure! 😉
So, what kind of person do you wish you could be? What is stopping you?
Victor: Sophia was taken from me in an act of revenge. I have since strived to not only be the man that she saw in me, but also fight for and protect the interests of her mother that she left behind.
Marie: That’s certainly admirable!
All right, so I’m going to throw another random question at you now.
Who was your first love?
Victor: Sophia was a young mortal virgin when I met her in my 1100th year and I have not loved another wholeheartedly since, but I feel that there is still a part of her somewhere in the world.
Marie: And you’re probably right. I’m a sucker for true love, and I do believe in reincarnation…
So, what’s the most terrible thing that ever happened to you, Victor?
Victor: The night I held her dying in my arms was not only our wedding night, but also the night I was betrayed by my brother. Death and pain is linked with immortality as the passing of a century, but finding oneself alone in the world in one night leaves a person broken.
Marie: Oh, no! How terrible! I’m so sorry for your loss. 😦
Let’s move on to something a bit lighter now, shall we?
What was your dream growing up? Did you achieve that dream? If so, in what ways was it not what you expected? If you never achieved the dream, why not?
Victor: To be king of my father’s land, and a warrior brave and true.
Marie: All right.
So, tell us…who is your role model, Victor?
Victor: An ancient by the name of Remus. He is my comrade, brother in arms and creator who turned me in the 8th century.
Let’s try something else. Well, you’ll probably think I’m digging for dirt on the next question.
Is there someone you pretend to like but really dislike?
Victor: Deadly and gutless, Skeal is a vampire assassin who hides behind the power of his master. Willing to kill whom or whatever he is commanded to by his master has left a long list of names to avenge, but in killing the right hand man of one so powerful as his master Azazel, I am left to spare him and turn my back at every opportunity.
Marie: How unfortunate!
Let me ask you a different question.
What is your deepest desire?
Victor: To rediscover the thrill and excitement in life. I simply live an existence with no hope of anything new as I have lived it all.
Marie: Such cynicism. I hope you find what you’re looking for…
So, what is your greatest fear, Victor?
Victor: To lose my heart to a frail mortal again.
Marie: I can certainly understand that worry, but you know, we can’t truly feel until we truly love.
Well, we’re out of time. Thank you for visiting us today, Victor. It was so interesting getting to know you! 🙂
(Waves goodbye to her guest.)
Marie: Now, let’s shift over and get the author’s perspective. We have author Eryn Black on the stage today. It’s such a pleasure to meet you! Hello, Eryn!
Author Eryn Black: Hello! Thank you for having me!
Marie: My pleasure!
We just got to talk to the hero of your story, Victor. Quite an interesting character. Can you tell us a little about him?
Eryn: He was a complex creation. A broken man whose personal demons left him with little hope of ever finding love again. Creating a visualization of his handsome face and dynamically perfect physique was a lot of fun. Despite a dark scar on one side of his face, to look at him is a sexual stimulation of any woman’s fantasy.
And it’s no wonder! (Fans herself.) Woo! Not to mention I have a weakness for those with fangs…well, the good ones, anyway.
So…what are your character’s greatest strengths?
Eryn: Despite centuries of battle and blood-sucking, he has a good heart (that has been dead for 1,300 years) and ready to fight for those in need.
Marie: That’s certainly admirable!
Now, let’s take the opposition on that. What, do you feel, are Victor’s greatest weaknesses?
Eryn: Silver, sunlight, wooden stakes, crosses, holy water and dead blood can weaken or kill most vampires, but his greatest weakness is his need to love and protect his traitorous brother.
Marie: Familial relations are often complicated.
So, let’s try something else.
What are some of his favorite foods?
Eryn: Food is not deadly or impossible for a vampire to enjoy, but all vampires live off of the oxygen-filled blood of a living victim/donor, or a vampire filled from a fresh feeding. Victor lives from a liquid diet of blood or his favorite brandy or whiskey.
Marie: I see.
What’s a positive quality that your character is unaware that he or she has?
Eryn: Linked by a supernatural and celestial element, he is eternally connected to an ancient family line that will one day defeat the darkest evil.
Will readers like or dislike this character, and why?
Eryn: Handsome, brave and willing to sacrifice anything for the woman he loves, Victor is a woman’s dream hero. His story is one that you will want to enjoy while curled up in bed with a glass of your favorite wine and some luxurious chocolates.
Marie: Yes to the chocolates, for sure! And hopefully the dark variety…;)
So, now that we have a real taste of Victor, we have a few questions for you as well as the author.
What first gave you the idea for Kindred Sacrifice?
Eryn: Born from a novella I wrote, The Perfect Bite, which was inspired from a Valentine’s erotic mask ball I attended years ago. After releasing The Perfect Bite, I felt that Anna and Victor deserved more of a story and that has turned into the beginning of a series that I have fallen in love with.
Marie: Isn’t it interesting how the muse works? 🙂
Let’s try something else.
What is your writing style like, Eryn? Are you a pantster or a plotter?
Eryn: I love to organize my thoughts, but no matter how much time I spend sitting and outlining a story, the plot unfolds to me as I am driving. A note pad ready to take down notes or plan out my daily writing goal is always at my side, but once I have a visualization –normally inspired by music- I am ready to type away and see where the story takes me.
Now, I’m throwing this one in for our aspiring writers. Did you come across any specific challenges in writing Kindred Sacrifice or publishing it? What would you do differently the next time?
Eryn: Creating a new vampire/ werewolf universe has several challenges. Not only do I need to keep in mind the opinions of fans from this genre, I also need to define the rules of my monsters and stay true to them. History as well as my Christian and Jewish roots has had a dominating role in my life. Researching this project, I adopted several aspects of ancient worlds as well as the history of angels. This may be fiction, but I like the fantasy connection to men and women who lived.
When it comes to fantasy, you never want to deviate from your own rules or laws in your world. Readers are depending on you to introduce them to your world, whether it be supernatural in contemporary LA, California, or an unknown planet in another galaxy or dimension. And if you contradict yourself, you will not only confuse your readers, you might deprive them the pleasure of reading your story.
Marie: All good points!
Well, it was a such a pleasure having you here on the I Love Romance Blog! And how apropos is that, considering what a great story Kindred Sacrifice appears to be.
Readers, you will just have to pick up a copy of this awesome book by Eryn Black, a very talented author! 🙂
Here is the blurb for Kindred Sacrifice:
The creation of man was written in theology long ago, creating a structure of a world where men and women bathe in the sunlight and feast in all the glories of the world. But what of the fallen, those who have once lived above the world and now are left to exist in the darkness of night feeding off the blood of mortal life? Journey forth in legend and discover what became of the angels that defied the laws of Heaven.
Finding her way in a world she never truly belonged in, Anna is about to learn the truth about all the dark myths told to her as a child and find herself the heroine of her own horror story. Living alone in Southern California, she’s a modern girl who recently learned she has a healthy appetite for adventure, sex, and her new mysterious stranger, Victor, a 7th century Bavarian Prince turned vampire.
Mourning the loss of his fallen bride for the last two hundred years, he is a modern stud who has traded his warhorse and broadsword for a UV protected sports car and cell phone and is ready to take on steel and battle to protect Anna from the dark forces stalking her every move. This story contains erotic sexual fantasies and the ongoing war between angels, vampires, and werewolves.
**CONTENT WARNING: Contains adult language and sexual situations. This book is intended for adult audiences 18+ ONLY**
Eryn is also offering us a great excerpt from the book!
“Release her.” A familiar voice broke the spell and Anna turned her head to see Victor’s dark, dead stare. “She is not for you,” he threatened.
“I see no mark on her, brother,” Alex defended. “If you wish to have her, then here.” Pushing Anna at Victor, Alex dared him to do what he knew his brother would not in public.
“You forget your place, brother.” Victor pulled Anna out of Alex’s reach and leaned, threatening him eye to eye. “You are not in a position to threaten me. Whether or not I choose to take her, she is out of your reach, as you well know.” His upper lip curled up over his exposed fangs.
They were locked in engaging eyes, neither ready to break the stalemate. Safely detained by one strong arm, he kept Anna safe from Alex’s reach. She was his to protect from any immortal to claim, especially Alex, but he could not bring himself to claim her as his own. The feel of her quick shallow breaths pushing her breasts into his back was hammering a need into him, and Victor struggled to keep his focus away from his growing carnal needs.
“She is off limits to you, me and any other, hungry for a bite.” His eyes burned with fire and his voice dropped to a guttural vibration that shook the floor under them. “Heed my warning.”
No one in the club took notice of the exchange going on over the exotic Persian drums being played from a small stage and the bodies writhing on the dance floor, and Victor preferred it that way. This was their own personal battle and he did not wish to exhaust his power tonight by clearing the club of any remembrance of his presence. For now, he was focused on getting Anna to safety and as far away from him and his sexual desires as possible.
Smiling brightly up at Victor, Alex flicked his tongue out for a quick intentional prick and a wink.
“I wish nothing between us at this moment and no doubt you see in her what you always have in their kind.” Sucking the trickle of blood that had beaded on his tongue, Alex turned and reached over to a nearby chair, plucking up a black leather coat he had no doubt deposited when he approached Anna. “She is safe from me for now, brother.” Reaching out, he grabbed ahold of Anna’s right hand. Despite the tension in Victor’s arm separating the two of them, he did not stop Alex from kissing the back of Anna’s hand before he tossed his coat over his shoulder and strutted out of the club.
“Was any of that meant to make sense?” she whispered over Victor’s shoulder.
For the first time since arriving at the club Victor turned to look Anna in the eye. She was pure and sweet with a soft glow in her cheeks picked up by the soft lighting. Struggling to control his temper, Victor dropped his protective arm and instantly missed her warmth on his back. Her clothes were simple and comfortable, but fitting for her. Pulling the shoulders of her sweater from side to side, she dislodged the neckline of her sweater. Looking down, her jeans were black, but her heels were cute and stylish black with a red polka dot ribbon trimming the edge of her shoe that peaked out from under the cuff of her jeans.
“It would be logical if you knew my brother as I do.” Annoyance built as he watched her fidget again with her sweater. Was it his presence that made her act with insecurity or was the sweater too scratchy? Whatever the reason, he wanted to rip it from her body, but bit back his need with the reminder of the danger he would put her in should she cross over into his path.
“Brothers?” she asked, unaware that she had figured out their relation on her own less than a week ago. A twinge of guilt pricked at him for wiping away memories that were hers to keep, but he had to act for her own safety, which meant she had to forget that night.
“I am still not certain what just happened.” Again, she pulled at the neck of the sweater, forcing a strap of her practical tan bra to show. “I never freeze in my own shoes like that,” she defended herself, but Victor could see nothing but that annoying bra strap.
Looking down at her shoes once again, he smiled at the cuteness in her choice and appreciated that among all this erotic sin surrounding them, she still managed to look pure despite his familiarity with her body. Restraining himself was more of a torture to him than he had anticipated.
“You should have better judgment in the future in who you choose to converse with here,” he warned her and hated himself for the sternness in his voice, though he knew it served a purpose. “How is it you managed to gain admission here? This is a private club and I know you are not a member.”
Rolling her shoulders back defensively, he bit his tongue when the neckline of her sweater fell off one shoulder, looking like an ‘80s pop star minus the big hair and plastic jewelry. This was getting bad and he really needed to keep his focus off her clothes and off her body.
“It’s a free country,” she defended.
“But the club is not,” he retorted, stopping her silent. “You obviously came here with someone and I would suggest that whoever the lucky bastard is, keeps you on a shorter leash next time.” Jealousy was a foreign accent to his voice and he hated it, but he was finding it a natural response where she was concerned.
“Excuse me!” Her exposed shoulder was burning red to match the patches on her face. She had a temper on her that entertained Victor. “What is it to you who I choose to come here with? I am not your employee nor would I ever want to be. Our relationship goes no farther than my event and I understand that you are not affiliated with that branch of the company anyway.”
Unable to resist any longer, he ignored the shock on her face and straightened the neckline on her sweater, pulling it over her shoulder and guiding it to fall properly down her chest, closing in a “V” at the base of her cleavage. He could not avoid accidental brushes of the top of her breasts and Victor screamed at his inner anal-retentive self to keep his hands to himself. Victor was now sporting a raging erection and for a vampire, no mortal was safe when he was aroused.
Clearing his throat, he struggled to hold back his animalistic needs.
“You are wrong. There is nothing in my company that I do not have complete control of and your relations—no matter how professional—are included.” Dropping his hands from her, he shoved them into the pockets of his slacks. “You’d better remember that when we meet again. Donovan does nothing without checking with me first and I will know your goings on with this event of yours.” The music was building in the room and it had begun to be difficult to keep their conversation in soft tones.
Looking up into his eyes, she studied him closer than he was comfortable. His powers of manipulation were never foolproof and he recognized that knowing look in her eyes. Hoping she would write whatever clarification off as a dream, he took in two deep false breaths for her benefit. He did not wish to tempt disaster. Relaxing his shoulders, he tried a different approach.
“You are clearly not comfortable here. So would you like me to find whoever it was you arrived with and inform him that you are ready to leave?” Keeping his tone as kind and understanding as a man in his condition could accomplish, he was pleased to see that it worked and immediately he watched her relax in front of him. She stopped with the aggressive study on him and nervously backed away.
“No, thank you. She is looking for her friend who works here now to let her know that we can’t stay.”
Victor was happily surprised at her use of the word ‘she,’ having already come to the obvious conclusion of how she had come to be here.
“Well.” He cleared his throat, struggling to find the correct words. “If you can give me her description, I can have you on your way home in no time.”
“No thank you. I think it’s best if I stay here and wait.” Her eyes suddenly avoided contact and she started to shift her weight in her heels. Annoyance was building, knowing that she was so disconnected from him this night after what they had shared only a week ago, but he was the only one to blame.
“If you’re determined to play it safe, could I buy you a drink?” Victor knew that it would be in her best interest if he walked away now before he slaked his hunger for her body and her blood, but where she was concerned he was weak and could not so easily walk away. Biting her lower lip, she looked back and forth from the bar and the hallway she had seen Jen vanish through. “Please,” putting a hand to his chest, he gave her a half bow, “it would be my honor.”
The wheels in her head could have been heard a block away from how hard she was thinking over this. This was all too difficult and he had a solution to her reluctance, but he felt a twinge of guilt for already manipulating her recent memories. Luckily, just as he was able to turn away, her brown eyes met his and a nervous smile worked its way from her lips and up to her eyes.
“I think that would be okay,” she finally agreed. “But I won’t have to do anything if I stay, will I?” A crinkle in her brow betrayed her fears.
“No,” he happily responded with a chuckle. The novelty of her innocence had not worn off from the party and it made him smile involuntarily. “But if you should see something you like I would be happy to help you.” Victor knew that engaging with this woman again was not only against his plans, but also not the safest choice for her. She may look just like his beloved Sophia, but their personalities were worlds apart and he did not want to put her in the same danger that Sophia willingly followed him into.
Escorting her to the bar, Victor ordered red wine and Anna ordered white wine. There were other refreshments he preferred after going without for so many days, but this was take two in their introductions and no matter how desperately he wanted to taste her again he dared not risk the fallout. It was better to appear as civilized as possible. They took their glasses to a small bistro table with three chairs. After pulling Anna’s chair out for her he kicked the unused chair away from the table to avoid any interruptions and took his seat beside her.
“To the dark days that come. May they pass by as sweetly as the good.” He toasted, clinking his glass with hers before they both took a sip. It was a cheap wine and bitter to the taste. Victor appreciated fine wines and this was most definitely not one. Forcing down the bitter taste, he thought of how sweet and delicious she would taste in exchange. His days of forgoing nourishment out of sentimentality were catching up with him.
“Tell me,” he tried to distract his hunger with meaningless chitchat, “what is it you do with your time when you are not organizing charity events at someone else’s expense?” He knew that his question sounded a little harsh, but he was hungry.
Her mouth fell open in surprise and managed to not catch any flies before she closed it and thought of a reply. Stunned by his directness, she was not armed with a witty comeback that Victor had hoped for.
“I actually was released from my temp job last week and luckily have time on my hands to focus on this event with my full attention.”
“Fired? What for?” He was prying and he didn’t care; it kept his mouth off her neck.
“Yes, I was sick recently and missed too much work.” Pausing to think for a moment, she chewed her bottom lip and averted her eyes. “Maybe that wasn’t the best way to describe it, but that will not happen with this event. You should have no worries where I’m concerned.” Straightening in her chair and rolling back her shoulders, she took on her professional pose, but the snap of a cat-o-nine tails striking a woman’s back nearby distracted her. Each strike was a warm distraction that ran right to the heat between her legs. Failure or not, she didn’t care. So much of this place seemed like it had been plucked from the delete folder of her brain, but she suddenly didn’t care.
Looking over her shoulder at the musicians on the stage, she gasped when she saw the four bodies engaged in an erotic tangle of a dance. Their bodies were stripped naked and they moved with elegance, holding, stroking and grasping with each other as the music built. People sat around in overstuffed chairs watching. Some were plainly aroused from the sexual display and others were observers, like an art critique studying a piece for the first time. Across the floor sat a man in dark business dress. His hair was feathered; his collar unbuttoned and tie absent, like he had been engaging in his own carnal dance. Standing at his side was a woman dressed in a patent leather maid outfit, balancing on neck-breaking high heel boots with a heel so high she was balancing on her tip-toes like a ballet dancer. Bound in her clothing, Anna noticed a sensuality in the curves of the woman’s body.
Looking straightforward, the maid did not break her concentration, never focusing on anything particular in the room. Her hair was pulled tight and piled on top of her head and her makeup was perfect. The woman stood there at attention beside the man, with her arms bound behind her back, laced up in a shiny black patent leather sleeve. Instinctively, Anna thought of this as a window into punishment and degradation, but looking at the man’s face and how he looked up at her, Anna could only see a glow of love shared in their eyes. This all confused her.
“They make quite a pair.” Victor broke her concentration, and Anna quickly looked back at the erotic dancers, hoping he was not referring to the maid she had been watching. “At first glance most people would find the two of them as an abomination and perhaps declare them mentally disturbed, but I look around this room and see people finding peace with themselves being displayed in complete honesty.”
“That frightens me,” she defended.
“Look at her,” he instructed and Anna’s eyelids fluttered, fighting against her will to get a good long look. “Look at her face.” He moved his chair till he sat behind her, spreading his legs to fit her chair between them. Reaching up, he brushed a couple stray hairs off her neck. “Look at her neck and shoulders.” Running circles over her neck and trailing down to her shoulders, he could feel gooseflesh rise up under his touch and heard her breath catch. “She is perfectly relaxed and at peace.” He ran his finger down her arms and then along the underside till he lined the outside of her right breast. Anna did not move, completely entranced by his voice and what she saw.
Following his instructions with her eyes, she found his touch and draw from the woman all the sensations she felt, linking them together in that instant. Suddenly his voice and touch brought out the beauty in what the woman displayed in her costume and presence. Anna did not flinch when his fingers boldly touched her breasts and she was surprised to find that she longed for him to take a much bolder move on her body. Soon his words became a melodic background when she suddenly could not remove her eyes from the couple. Every glance they made to each other showed an exchange of love and passion. This was not just a display of dominance, but an interaction and display of love.
“What is she to him?” she asked, licking her dry lips and struggling to breathe under his touch. She watched as the man reached around the woman’s waist, pulling her down on his lap. He turned around, safely guiding her to assist where she needed balance with her arms still laced behind her back. She sat straight on his lap, not fighting or flinching and gave out one brief flicker of her lips when he leaned over to kiss the tops of her breasts.
“You mean, is she a plaything or employee?” he asked. His voice had dropped and was a deep guttural sound. Anna couldn’t manage a word, pressing her thighs together, focusing on trying to keep her sexual needs hidden. She could smell her own wet sex and fought to contain her own arousal. “They have been both, but now they are lovers. They own this place and are very good friends of mine.” His hand moved under her breast, sensually rubbing her upper rib cage, pulling her back in her chair. Warmth rushed under her skin from the erotic feeling of his possessive touch, knowing that any passerby could plainly see she was claimed. This was all moving so fast and she didn’t understand it all.
Anna looked over her shoulder, stretching her torso and opening herself up to more of his touch. “Do you mean you—” She felt a rise of jealousy and shame for her inability to compare to the sexual pair of lovers across the room with her meager experience.
“No!” He quickly pulled his arm back from her and Anna bit back a plea for him to return to her. “We are nothing more than friends.”
“Then do you have your own…plaything?” she asked with a broken brow.
“I did until recently, but I had to release her when I saw a beautiful woman enter a ballroom dressed like sin and still glowing from her own innocence.” Holding her focus with his eyes, he raised his hand to gently cradle the side of her face.
“Is your innocent seductress here now?” She hoped that she would not see a bondage slave of his own walk up.
“Yes.” Anna choked on her breath. “And she is sitting right in front of me.”
Shaking her head, she rubbed her cheek in his hand and was warmed by the friction of her warm cheek against his cold hand.
“I should not be doing this.” His protest was lost to her; she could no longer hear anything beyond her own heartbeat and felt only his touch. “You are not safe with me and if I were wise I would send you home now.”
“I don’t understand.” She purred into his palm and his body stiffened.
“I was there.” He struggled to confess, and Anna was even more confused. “At the masquerade last week. I was there and saw you.”
The confession was not what she had expected and Anna froze in her seat. Their eyes locked and fire passed between their stares, locking them in a sensual vortex. A knowing light sparked in her mind and she was hit with a flash of an erotic scene beyond anything she should be capable of imagining. Anna witnessed in an instant her humiliation of being abandoned at the bar by the man earlier and a half naked cheerleader. She watched herself getting washed away in a green wave of absinthe sinking down its sweet licorice taste and getting pulled out by this man. So much rushed through her head that she was growing dizzy and unable to tell if her vision was real or not until she felt the floor fall out from under her and a man embrace her in the most empowering, dominating sexual kiss she had ever known.
His burning stare overpowered her and Anna felt her body burn up in the rush of desire and need. Grabbing hold of the back of her chair, he picked it up with inhuman strength and tilted it to pour her into his lap. She was encased in two strong arms and before she could comprehend any protest, his lips claimed her. Attacking her with a kiss that left them both clinging and pulling at each other. They were an inferno that was soon to burn out of control. Writhing on his lap, she could feel his erection reaching for her.
“Please,” she moaned out of control and did not take notice to observe who had shifted their focus from the dance floor to the two of them. “Please,” she pleaded again and was answered by him standing with her secured in his arms. Anna did not understand what was happening and felt overwhelmed by it all. She could not tell what was real or fantasy, but she did not wish for any of it to end.
Pulling away from her, he looked dead into her eyes with warning.
“You will regret this,” he warned her. “And so will I,” he confessed.
A California girl to her core, Eryn was born in East L.A. and raised by her inspirational and talented mother in Sierra Madre, California (hidden above the rosy city of Pasadena). There she indulged herself in reading Anne of Green Gables, The Scarlet Pimpernel and Ivanhoe under the California sun, but she never had any interest in the romance genre beyond the classics. Then one long, lonely night a few years ago, she came across a friend’s discarded paperback romance and she has been hooked ever since. A lover of reading and a lover of… well… just a lover, Eryn has taken on this new adventure in her life putting pen to paper and digging deep to reveal all of the delightful and erotic stories that have tormented her dreams. Eryn hopes that you will enjoy reading her adventures as much as she has enjoyed writing them.
And, if you want to know how to connect with the amazing Eryn Black, here are some of her author links:
Once again, I want to thank both of our guests, Victor Titus, the male main character of Kindred Sacrifice, and Eryn Black, the brilliant author of the novel, for stopping by! It was so much fun to have you here! 🙂