SPOTLIGHT: Arcane Island by Angela Knight #paranormalromance #DarkFantasy

Dave Frost died in combat five years ago, but his soul survives, magically bonded to the body of his partner — a six-hundred-pound tiger. Dave can conjure a human manifestation, but nobody treats him as a man anymore. Especially not women. Until he meets Ariel, his costar, while shooting a reality TV competition in the Bahamas. The show’s producers have assigned him to the beautiful witch for an onscreen showmance.

Ariel Piper’s talent is strong enough to turn the competition in their favor. Unfortunately, she also has a condition that makes using her magic agonizing. When they discover Dave’s touch kills the pain, he’s driven to help.

Their showmance soon becomes the real thing, though Dave fears she’ll dump him when the show wraps. Can Ariel convince this heroic, wounded man to trust her love before the show comes to a lethal climax that’s not in the script?

Available in Paperback

Get the ebook at Changeling Press

Praise for Arcane Island (Arcane Talents 3)

“Finally, it’s Dave’s story! After reading Arcane Hearts and Arcane Kisses, I wondered how Dave would get his happily ever after – I’m so glad he eventually did. This story was a terrific blend of budding romance and building suspense – I didn’t know how things would work out both in the reality show challenges and April and Dave’s relationship. A gripping and exciting read.” — 5 Stars from JennT, Booksprout Review

“I totally enjoyed this story, the whole reality show twist is wonderfully original. The relationship between Dave and Ariel is my favorite part of this story. I loved the ups and downs and feel that this is great addition to this Amazing series!!! I could not put it down once I started it. I Loved It!” — 5 Stars from sissyj59, Amazon Review

“What a great book. Exciting, tense. One to be read and reread. Hope you enjoy as much as I did.” — 5 Stars from Di Kecap, Amazon Review

“Another fantastic story from Changeling Press. Angela is one of the prime talents of this group. Again she has wrapped me up and sent me on a fantastic adventure.” — 5 Stars from Ken Thompson, Amazon Review

Excerpt

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2022 Angela Knight

The cave reeked of black magic — a combination of rotting blood from sacrificed chickens and the burnt metal pong of old spells. Overlaying that was the stench of fear, spoiled food, and guano from the bats I could hear fluttering and squeaking somewhere ahead.

It was also dark as the inside of a bear’s hairy butt, except for a circle of illumination from my helmet flash. The light bounced across Bobby Nolan’s back as he strode ahead of me, taking point. He was walking a little God damn fast, given we were hunting MEEDs — the Magically Enhanced Explosive Devices the Caliphate’s sorcerers liked to plant. Chances were good the bastards had arranged some nasty surprises in their cave complex once it became obvious we were going to overrun them. It would suck to step on something that blew us into orbit.

So I was less than thrilled Bobby had his attention elsewhere. Probably brooding about the fight he’d just had with his girlfriend.

Idiot.

But then, if he’d been smart, he wouldn’t have cheated on Erica Harris to begin with. He’d hurt her, damn it, and I wanted to kick his ass. And I wasn’t alone in that, either. We all liked our team Arcanist, who was elsewhere in the cave complex, using her magic to disable a MEED one of the Marines had found.

“Bobby, slow up,” Jake Nolan whispered from behind me. We were moving in a stack, single file. “The idea is not to find the booby trap by stepping on it.”

“Go fuck yourself,” his brother snarled.

“Bobby, mind on the job, not on your dick,” Lt. Kurt Briggs snapped from behind Jake. Our team leader rarely lost his temper, but when he did, his tongue could strip the paint off an MRAP.

Bobby’s lioness rumbled a warning growl at Kurt, making the air vibrate with her magic. Kurt’s cat, Stoli, and my Smilodon returned her growl with interest. Because there was a distance limit on melding, the cats rode a helicopter circling overhead just out of Stinger range while their minds fused with ours. Working together, Familiars and Ferals could create a mystical shell around the human’s body. The bulletproof animal manifestation had the beast’s strength, claws, and fangs — with human intelligence. Which made for a giant combo plate of whup-ass.

They didn’t call us Tooth Tanks for nothing.

Trouble was, if Bobby gave in to his cat’s emotions, he could give the phrase “friendly fire” a friendly fang twist. I looked over my shoulder at Kurt, meaning to ask if he wanted me to take point instead. Before I could get the question out of my mouth, Bobby stopped in his tracks. I bumped into him.

All hell broke loose.

From the corner of one eye, I saw sigils flare on the tunnel wall Bobby had brushed with one shoulder. The blood-red light of a Caliphate booby trap blasted through the tunnel. In that fraction of a second, the spell grabbed his lioness’ anger and drove Bobby into a murderous rage. Since he was already pissed, it didn’t take much. He roared, the sound deafening in the tunnel’s confined space.

His cat exploded into full manifestation right in my face, a glowing lioness sculpted of pure magic, one huge paw already swinging at my head. I didn’t even have time to duck. Bobby hit me so hard, light exploded in my skull with a crack like a tree limb breaking. The tunnel wheeled around me as I went down.

“Frost!” Kurt’s voice rang with horror. “Bobby, you fuck…”

I didn’t even feel my body hit the tunnel’s hard-packed dirt. I couldn’t breathe, couldn’t move as the world exploded into chaos. Bobby’s blazing cat leaped over me, roaring in fury as she charged his brother.

I struggled to breathe as a single gunshot echoed between the tunnel’s rock walls. The roaring cut off.

“Shit!” Jake screamed. “Bobby!”

I tried to move, but my head seemed disconnected from my body. I couldn’t feel a God damn thing. Couldn’t breathe. Jesus, did he break my neck? Blackness closed over me, and I realized I was dying.

Smilodon roared in terror and rage, but I was already falling into the infinite black. Something jerked me to a stop — Smiley’s magic. I clawed for him in sheer desperation, and we fought to hold on as death tried to rip me away.

The tiger’s love and need flooded my consciousness as he hauled me to him. We fell into light, and I could breathe again. The air was full of the thunderous whomp whomp of helicopter blades. I sucked in a panicked breath and opened my eyes.

About the Author

New York Times best-selling author Angela Knight has written and published more than sixty novels, novellas, and ebooks, including the Mageverse and Merlin’s Legacy series. With a career spanning more than two decades, Romantic Times Bookclub Magazine has awarded her their Career Achievement award in Paranormal Romance, as well as two Reviewers’ Choice awards for Best Erotic Romance and Best Werewolf Romance.

Angela is currently a writer, editor, and cover artist for Changeling Press LLC. She also teaches online writing courses. Besides her fiction work, Angela’s writing career includes a decade as an award-winning South Carolina newspaper reporter. She lives in South Carolina with her husband, Michael, a thirty-year police veteran and detective with a local police department.

Find the author online: Website | Facebook

SPOTLIGHT: Raven’s Song by Angela Knight #PNR #DarkFantasy @AngelaKnight @changelingpress

Raven’s Song (Arcane Talents 4)

An Arcane Talents Prequel

Raven Garland is a rock star with a voice that is literally magical. She’s also got a serious problem: she’s being stalked by her ex. Ewan Bradley’s magical abilities and powerful father make him a deadly threat, forcing her to hire a seductive bodyguard with powers of his own. Nate Carter can use his Primo magic to increase his physical strength to superhuman levels — and he needs every bit of that power to keep Raven alive. Besides her nasty ex, there’s the lethal costar with anger issues and a mystical link to a bulletproof tiger.

To make matters worse, Nate is slowly falling in love with his client. The passion seems mutual, but Raven’s love affairs have a notoriously short shelf life. For all his strength, Nate doesn’t think he can take becoming her latest fling. Raven wants her handsome bodyguard as far more than a temporary lover, but how can she convince him to trust her when he knows her magical voice can make him believe whatever she wants? Nate knows in real life, the good guy doesn’t always get the girl.

Available At:

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EXCERPT

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2022 Angela Knight

Los Angeles, January 3, 1994

Nathan Carter watched the woman he loved kiss another man.

Raven Garland lay sprawled among sheets of crimson silk, eyes closed, full lips parted on a gasp as the muscular blond braced above her. Her lover pressed biting kisses to the angle of her delicate jaw, and she gripped his bare shoulders, scarlet nails digging into his skin. Her sweat-sheened body seemed to glow in the light from dozens of candles that surrounded the brass bed, clustered on the floor, or arranged on the nightstand among drifts of white rose petals.

All the while, her voice — that amazing three-octave, Grammy-winning voice — poured from hidden speakers in a sensual purr. “Deep in my Feral heart, where all my passions start, I feel your magic’s call…”

Nate could certainly feel her magic call as he stood in the shadows of the huge room. A call he desperately wanted to answer, even as his common sense told him to stay the fuck away.

Unfortunately, his instincts also told him her lover was going to be a problem. A big, powerfully muscled bastard, Gary Handle was the kind of guy women like Raven would be drawn to.

He wore his dishwater blond hair cropped in a military brush cut that accentuated his square jaw and hawkish nose. He had the gold irises that marked him as a Feral, though his eyes were a bit too small to balance that wide mouth. Good-looking enough, but there was something about Gary that made Nate’s combat-honed instincts howl.

Raven didn’t seem to sense the danger as she stared up at him, entranced, her lush body relaxed and yearning in his arms.

Nate wanted to touch her like that. Wanted to feel the weight of those full breasts, her long dancer’s legs gripping his hips. Just like that.

He also wanted to haul Gary the hell off her and drive his fist into the bastard’s nose. The crunch of cartilage would be intensely satisfying.

Breathing in hard, Nate fought the absurd jealousy. She’s a client. What kind of idiot bodyguard gets jealous of a client? She doesn’t see me as anything but hired muscle. And she’s right.

His inner Neanderthal didn’t give a shit. Nate closed his eyes, trying to control the waves of irrational emotion…

And stiffened. In the darkness behind his closed eyelids, Raven glowed like a torch, the aura of her Bard magic bright to Nate’s Talent senses.

But above her, where Gary Handle should be, a glowing tiger crouched, ears laid back, tail lashing as it stared down at her with vicious intensity.

The spirit of Gary’s dead cat wanted to take a bite out of Raven. Fuck, fuck, fuck!

“Cut!” Roger Timmons called from his place beside the studio camera, his voice taut with frustration. Around him, the rest of the video crew — the two camera operators, the sound engineer, the lighting crew — even the hair and makeup girl — looked just as impatient. “Gary, you flashed her suit top again. We’re trying to create the illusion Raven’s naked, and we can’t do that if fabric shows.” He glowered, eyes narrowing as he bit off every word. “Keep one hand over the top, damn it.”

Handle gave Raven a glittering glare in the blazing lights of the soundstage. “Why don’t you just take it off? Then we wouldn’t have to worry about showing it.”

“No, just my nipples,” Raven said, irritation edging her tone. Even so, her voice sounded rich and seductive, silken as the sheets. And she wasn’t even drawing on the Bard magic that had made her one of the hottest rock stars of the decade.

Gary opened his mouth on a snarl that sounded as if he were on the edge of manifesting his tiger. “You…”

Nate tensed, his bodyguard instincts howling. Too far away. I’m too damn far away if he goes for her… He jolted forward a step.

“Fuck it, take ten,” Timmons said in disgust. “I don’t like this angle anyway. Jack, maybe we should try positioning the camera a little lower…” He turned to the cinematographer, a grizzled older man who was staring at Gary with a troubled frown. Apparently, Jack didn’t like the looks of the Feral either.

“Whatever, man.” Gary rolled from the bed. Giving Raven a glare, he stalked off the bedroom set platform, wearing only a Speedo and a layer of baby oil.

“Jerk,” Raven muttered, and sat up, the sheet falling to her lap, revealing her strapless red bikini. She hunched forward, raking her hands through her hair, her expression tight. The position showed too much gorgeous cleavage for Nate’s peace of mind, and he dragged his gaze away.

He’d done that a lot over the year he’d been Raven’s bodyguard. She fascinated him with that disciplined dancer’s body, quick mind, and the Bard magic that pulsed around her when she performed.

None of which made it easy to stay focused on his job: protecting her from Ewan Bradley, the psycho ex who’d been terrorizing her.

Now, watching Gary pace like a literal tiger in a cage, Nate had the nasty feeling her stalker might be a lot less dangerous than her costar.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

New York Times best-selling author Angela Knight has written and published more than sixty novels, novellas, and ebooks, including the Mageverse and Merlin’s Legacy series. With a career spanning more than two decades, Romantic Times Bookclub Magazine has awarded her their Career Achievement award in Paranormal Romance, as well as two Reviewers’ Choice awards for Best Erotic Romance and Best Werewolf Romance.

Angela is currently a writer, editor, and cover artist for Changeling Press LLC. She also teaches online writing courses. Besides her fiction work, Angela’s writing career includes a decade as an award-winning South Carolina newspaper reporter. She lives in South Carolina with her husband, Michael, a thirty-year police veteran and detective with a local police department.

Find her online…

  Blog  Facebook  Twitter

RELEASE BLITZ: The Outcasts by Marteeka Karland #SciFiRomance #DarkFantasy @marteekakarland @changelingpress @GoIndiMarketing

Title: The Outcasts (Duet)

Author: Marteeka Karland

Publisher: Changeling Press LLC

Release Date: September 9

Heat Level: 4 – Lots of Sex

Pairing: Male/Female/Male (No Male/Male interaction), Male/Male/Female (Male/Male interaction)

Length: 247 pages

Genre: Romance, Science Fiction, Action Adventure, Dark Fantasy, Futuristic, Bisexual, Multisexual & Pansexual, Multiple Partners

Synopsis

In a dark futuristic Earth, the Triad must take a mate. But their pet has other ideas…

Mating the Triad (The Outcasts 1): Exiled to the Outlands, Mia’s sheer viciousness in defending herself catches the notice of one of the most powerful triads in the Outlands. Not one to simply be taken care of, Mia refuses to be treated as anything other than an equal — even in times of battle. How can she prove to three powerful warriors she’s not only the one for them, but an asset in every aspect of their lives?

The Triad’s Pet (The Outcasts 2): The only reason Arryn’s allowed to continue to live in the village is because of her exceptional talents in both healing and engineering. When danger is deliberately brought into their midst, it’s up to Arryn to direct her men. But how can a pet convince three stubborn warriors to trust in her unique abilities?

Publisher’s Note: The Outcasts Duet contains the previously published novels Mating the Triad and The Triad’s Pet.

Excerpt

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2022 Marteeka Karland
Excerpt from Mating the Triad

“Mia Cook. For the crime of theft from a noble house, your punishment is banishment to the Outlands.” The pious judge looked down at me from his throne. With a sneer, I spat in his general direction, expecting to get backhanded by one of several guards surrounding the dais. When nothing happened, I did it again for good measure. The judges always looked at us lowborns with contempt and superiority. I wanted to do some <em>real</em> lawbreaking. Like ripping off the guy’s nuts. With my teeth.

I didn’t resist when two guards dragged me to the center of the great room where court was held daily. Once an accused had been judged guilty, he or she stood in the ceremonial circle for all to see. Maybe it was me, but it seemed like they were just looking for reasons to banish any lowborns in the city. My crime? I’d stolen a bowl of bread. Granted, it wasn’t just any bowl of bread — it was spoonbread. A Kentucky Outback delight. At least it had been back in the day. Earth hadn’t always been so medieval. There had been a time when whole festivals were dedicated to Kentucky spoonbread. Now, a dish like that was a delicacy, available only to the wealthy. Nobles. It was also my very favorite thing in the whole goddamned city.

Spoonbread is a “wet” bread dish made of cornmeal. You bake it, serve it with real butter, and eat it with a spoon. Like a pudding or custard, only not hardly as moist. In my opinion, the punishment was worth getting to eat the entire bowl — which I had, fighting for the last spoonful after I’d been caught. Especially since it had been a couple of days since I’d had anything to eat. I knew when I stole it what my punishment would be if I were caught. But, honestly, you should try this shit. It’s worth the ordeal.

Which means the damned guards got to parade me through the whole of the middle- and low-born sections. Naked. After my little “spat” with the judge, I doubted I could conjure enough sympathy to get one of them to cover me with a cape until we got to the gate.

“You will be sent forth into the wildness beyond the walls of our hallowed city. Such is the way of all heathens. May the Heavenly Father in all his wisdom give you what you deserve in the Outland where He punishes all heathens.”

As the bastard spoke, the guards stripped the clothing from my body. When my outfit proved too difficult to remove easily, they simply cut the material, throwing everything into a great fire pit next to the circle. There was no way I could simply snag something on the way out to cover myself.

Just to be contrary, I stood proud, refusing to cover myself with my arms. Lifting my chin, I looked into the eyes of the man who’d passed judgment on me. He was old. Like <em>really</em> old. Thin hanks of long gray hair hung all over his head. His look was kind of comical since he was balding in places. If he’d been intelligent, he’d have cut it neatly, or simply shaved the shit off. What hair he had did little to cover the age-spotted skin. I knew my fucking with him was working when a most unbecoming blush splotched his already splotchy skin. Am I a bitch for loving the fact that he was old, ugly, and probably couldn’t get it up long enough to enjoy a woman? Probably a good thing. He was the kind of man to take advantage of his position.

As if he’d heard my thoughts, the judge leaned forward in his chair behind his desk. “The little bitch still has no respect for her betters. Why not show the little thief what she’s in for? Show her what happens to thieves who don’t learn their place.” An evil smile should have graced his less-than-perfect features, but, of course, the little bastard kept his pious expression firmly intact. How he managed that when he’d just ordered his guards to rape me was beyond my understanding.

“I will kill you,” I bit out.

He sat back, a small smile on his face. “I imagine you will. At least, in your dreams, between bouts of torture.”

One of the guards sneered, looking as if he’d been hoping for this development. A second guard muscled his way around the first one, growling a little. He was the clear Alpha there. No one challenged him as he took his place next to me, gripping my upper arm tightly. Obviously, he intended to be the one to carry out my extra punishment.

Fucker.

He was thickly muscled and stood over a head taller than me. His battle-scarred face seemed to match his body, if his heavily muscled arms were any indications. Scars crisscrossed his skin as if he had taken many blows. By not covering them as most men did, he signaled he was proud of his badges of honor. None in the guard challenged him. At present anyway.

As the guy pulled me closer to him, he whispered, “I’ll make this pleasurable for you if you’ll not fight. If you do, one of the others will challenge me. If they manage to take you, they won’t even try to be gentle, let alone give you pleasure.”

“So it’s either fight and get hurt or submit and not get hurt. Either way, I’m fucked. Literally.”

He fisted my hair, tilting my head back so I had to look up at him, then whispered for my ears alone even as he bared his teeth menacingly. His actions and expressions seemed more for the surrounding crowd — and the judge — than anything else. Despite the rough handling, he didn’t really hurt me. “You’re strong. You fought well when they took you. If I hadn’t been there, you might even have escaped.”

Purchase

Changeling Press LLC | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iTunes

Meet the Author

Erotic romance author by night, emergency room tech/clerk by day, Marteeka Karland works really hard to drive everyone in her life completely and totally nuts. She has been creating stories from her warped imagination since she was in the third grade. Her love of writing blossomed throughout her teenage years until it developed into the totally unorthodox and irreverent style her English teachers tried so hard to rid her of.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | BookBub

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Now in Paperback: Merlin’s Kiss by Stephanie Burke #DarkFantasy #PNR #suspense @FlashyCat

The Past. Life just isn’t fair! She was supposed to be the next Queen of the Britons when she retrieved Excalibur from the stone. But Merlin knows the world isn’t ready for a Queen, so to complete her destiny Brieana is placed under a sleep-spell. Only a noble knight, one equal to her in strength and courage, can awaken her.

The Present. Chasing dracks is hard work. But nothing prepared Kerian, ruler of Mirage, for the greatest surprise of all — a sleeping, naked woman falling at his feet during a hunt. He soon learns that she is from another time; the world that she knew is gone, and the world where she now lives is fraught with hidden dangers and perils.

The Future. Brieana discovers that in order to fulfill her destiny, she must do more than fall in love with the most perfect man she has ever seen. She must go on a quest to reclaim Excalibur, and with Kerian’s help, end the menace of evil that threatens their happiness — and their world.

Get the paperback at Amazon

Also available in ebook

EXCERPT

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2022 Stephanie Burke

“Run Arthur, run!” Brieana screamed as they raced through the crowded encampment that had sprung up around the famous sword.

“If you hadn’t called Lord DeLacy an ass-eared lout,” the voice behind her whined, “we would not be running!”

“Arthur! If you had stood up for me,” she panted between words as she ducked behind another fall of rocks, “I never would have had to defend myself!”

“We need to hide!” the pale young man gasped. “I wish I had never thought to take you for a walk in the moonlight.”

“You are right about hiding,” she groused as they ran past still another stone formation, ignoring his less than complimentary comment. “Behind there!” she cried as she grabbed his hand and darted behind a particularly large boulder. “We need a weapon.”

“Well, we would not need one if you had not kicked him in the privates!” he whined again.

Absently spying the hilt of an abandoned sword embedded in the rocks of a rise, Brieana ran to it and with deft fingers, began to probe the sword base.

“I would not have kicked him if he had not grabbed my person.”

Golden-haired Arthur scurried up the hill behind her. “Whatever you are doing, do it faster!” he urged. “I can hear them coming. He must have the whole garrison with him.”

Giving him one last disgusted look, Brieana gave one mighty yank and the abandoned sword pulled abruptly from its rocky sheath.

“And what do you think to do with that?” Arthur sneered at her while pushing an unruly lock of hair behind his ear and looking down his nose at her.

“Well, you are supposed to be the mighty warrior,” she growled losing patience with him at last. “You use it!”

With that, she shoved the sword into his hands and began to count the seconds before he would turn to her for help.

Not everyone knew it, but Arthur was the weakest swordsman in the area. And for the hundredth time, Brieana wondered why she dressed in the armor of the Black Knight to save his sorry hide in battle.

Then she took another good look at him as the moonlight illuminated his near perfect features, and she remembered. She was a fool for good looks and a great body. Certainly, she did not risk her very life time and time again for his mental acuity.

Even as he began to turn to thrust the sword into her smaller, albeit more capable hand, DeLacy and his men appeared at the base of the hill and froze in their places.

“Excalibur!” he shouted in shock, and soon the murmurs and cries of him and his men drew the rest of the encamped warriors to view the new King of the Britons. “Arthur has drawn Excalibur from the sacred stone! All hail Arthur, King of the Britons!”

As one, the assembled warriors dropped to their knees to pay homage to the one who would be king. Arthur looked puzzled for only a moment. He was a little dense, but not stupid. He thrust the sword high into the night sky.

“Excalibur!” he roared as he shoved Brieana behind him, nearly knocking her down in his eagerness.

“But I –” As Brieana began to protest, strong hands grasped her shoulders and spun her around.

“My Lord Merlin!” she gasped as she viewed the powerful mage. “I was just going to –”

“All hail Arthur!” he boomed in a loud, authoritative voice.

Brieana had always respected the older man as her friend and Arthur’s mentor. She had often thought him quite handsome and charming, with a deep sense of justice. He would help her.

“My Lord,” she said louder as he drew her away from the prostrating men. “I drew Excalibur from the stone.” As she thought about that fact, she came to a startling but wonderful realization. “I am King, uh, Queen of the Britons! I am the true ruler!” Then turning excitedly to Arthur, she cried, “I am Queen! Tell them, Arthur!”

Arthur was faced with a difficult decision. A decision many great men have been forced to make. He looked at Brieana’s luscious lips and then to the men kneeling before him. Love or power? He stared at her long, curling hair, as dark as raven’s wings, and her almond-shaped, green cat’s eyes, then to the teeming mass of masculinity that knelt at his feet ready to do any and all of his bidding. He looked back and saw love and a little fear reflected in her beautiful eyes, eyes that begged him to do the right thing. Love, or power? He knew what he had to do.

Facing the crowd, he declared in a ringing voice, “By right of strength and virtue, I, Arthur, have drawn Excalibur from the stone. I am king!”

Nooo!”

The fierce roar of approval emanating from the new king’s army drowned out Brieana’s scream of denial.

“My Lord Merlin!” she cried desperately as she ran to the sage, tripping over gravel and kicking up dust, and pulled on the sleeve of his long tunic. “You know the truth! I do not lie! Please tell them!” she begged as she looked into his bottomless black eyes.

Slowly, he turned away from her.

“Let us leave our ‘new king’ for now. We have much to discuss.” Then to the crowd, “Leave us!”

Shocked, she stared at the back of the man, her closest friend, her confidant, in horror. Betrayed! Those she had held closest to her, those she had trusted, had betrayed her.

Angry? She was pissed! How dare they keep her rightful kingdom from her? Manipulated! It all now made perfect sense. She had been manipulated by the master.

“You knew, My Lord Merlin.” Wide eyed, Brieana faced a most painful truth. “That is why you planted the idea of a moonlight walk in Arthur’s head with your talk of how beautifully the moon shines down upon the mountains. You planned this!”

ABOUT STEPHANIE BURKE

Stephanie is a USA Today Best Selling, multi published, multi award-winning author, Master Costumer, handicapped, wife and mother of two.

From sex-shifting, shape-shifting dragons to undersea worlds, sexually confused elemental Fey and homo-erotic mysteries, all the way to pastel-challenged urban sprites, Stephanie has done it all, and hopes to do more.

Stephanie is an orator on her favorite subjects of writing and world-building, a sometime teacher when you feed her enough tea and donuts, an anime nut, a costumer, and a frequent guest of various sci-fi and writing cons where she can be found leading panel discussions or researching varied legends and theories to improve her writing skills.

Stephanie is known for her love of the outrageous, strong female characters, believable worlds, male characters filled with depth, and multi-cultural stories that make the reader sit up and take notice.

RELEASE BLITZ: The Devil’s Lover by Alexa Piper #BDSM #DarkFantasy #LGBTQ @prowlingpiper @changelingpress @GoIndiMarketing

Title: The Devil’s Lover

Series: Hellbound 5

Author: Alexa Piper

Publisher: Changeling Press LLC

Release Date: August 12

Heat Level: 4 – Lots of Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 149 pages

Genre: Romance, Action Adventure, BDSM, Dark Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Romantic Comedy, Urban Fantasy, Dark Desire, Elves, Dragons & Magical Creatures, Magic, Murder Mystery

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Synopsis

Lionel and Lucifer are drawn deeper into a murder case, but they are set on solving it together.

Just when Lionel’s love life has gone back to normal — normal meaning the kinky Devil making his ownership known — Lionel’s murder case gets stranger. Lionel’s birth father seems to have his hands in the mystery, and Lionel finds himself in the sights of Eris, goddess of discord.

Lucifer used to be a prime example of a powerful underworld deity with all the knowledge and skill to take care of a lover in the bedroom. But that was before Lucifer fell properly in love and won over his necromantic boyfriend, who also happens to be a demigod. Lionel’s innate magic, magical skill, and stubborn nature make it exceedingly difficult for Lucifer to be the alpha god he wants to be for Lionel.

Lucifer is set on finding a way to provide for the man he loves and to fulfill Lionel’s every desire. But before he can focus entirely on his necromancer, the two of them must solve the case, prevent primordial deities from being raised and destroying the world, and learn to communicate better. It’s what relationships and crime solving are all about.

Excerpt

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2022 Alexa Piper

Lionel

The Devil’s body in front of mine, protecting me from a threat I didn’t quite understand, that was a new and uncomfortable feeling, and something I didn’t really care for. I tried getting a decent look at the deity that had teleported into Lucifer’s doorless office, but the Devil his own damn self kept pushing me back. It was so annoying when he was trying to be an alpha god.

“Will you cut it out, Beelzebug?” I grumbled, and Trony, in her pink tartan skirt and with her sword in hand, gave me an admiring look.

Nyx, the deity that had Lucifer so riled, chuckled and turned their milky, unseeing eyes on me. “You are a fierce one. Tiamat has said as much.”

And speak of the dragon mother, she appeared in the office as well, which was fine, apart from the fact that she wasn’t wearing any clothes. Awesome.

“What is going on here? Nyx, do you have to scare the children?” the dragon mother said and crossed her arms under her breasts. Not that I was paying any attention to her breasts, but it was sort of hard not to notice they existed. Why did all gods have trouble with clothing? Buttons and zippers really weren’t all that bad.

“Children?” Lucifer said and straightened before pulling me to his side and circling my waist with his arm in a proud <em>look, this is my boyfriend</em> kind of way. Apparently in his mind, the presence of the dragon mother lessened the threat level in his office.

“No one in this room was scared,” Metatron said and flashed her sword.

“What were you saying about Eris?” I asked the blind god… then realized looking at them wouldn’t be enough to cue them in on the fact I was speaking with them. “I mean, Nyx. You were saying about Eris?”

The sightless god turned to face me. “Eager as any human, aren’t you?” They smiled. “Or as the Devil dispensing deals.”

Tiamat clapped her hands. “If you have something to say about Eris, I am interested. I don’t appreciate her harassing poor, lovesick humans around the corner, but I think we can talk while also eating, can’t we?”

Metatron nodded. “I second that. The necromancer has been turning his nose up at my food since his return from Scotland, and he looks worse for wear.”

“I haven’t!” I said. “And I don’t! It’s just been a busy few days, and there were corpses.”

“Humans are quite frail and need regular nourishment, even those who are only partially so,” Nyx said, and they and the dragon mother nodded knowingly.

Lucifer glowered at the other god. “I know best what my boyfriend needs,” he said, but I could tell I was in for eating my breakfast out of the Devil’s hands while sitting in his lap.

* * *

Lucifer was indeed behaving like a total alpha god, and it reminded me that I should call Persephone and give her an update, but that would mean looking at my phone and seeing whatever social media was now making of the sharkomancer incident. Maybe I should still tell her about the minotaur… but what would I even tell her about that? It was confusing, the way I felt or should feel about Minos, and I was actually glad to be dealing with something else right about now.

The dragon mother, Nyx, and Lucifer and I teleported to the already set dining room table, and I tried to grab a chair, but Lucifer wouldn’t let me go. He pulled me close and tilted my chin up.

“How about I take you to Sephy’s and Hades’ place? It’s almost the weekend anyway, and you trained Marc Deacon well. I am sure he can handle things here while you relax a little,” Lucifer said. He was doing his best at looking charming, dashing, someone you didn’t want to say no to. His kitty-cat hair was catching the light just so.

In one word, he was a transparent, overprotective alpha god, and he was trying to lull me into damseling myself, or whatever you’d call it. “You are not benching me,” I said. “I will raise the minotaur, even if it’s –” If it was what? A way for me to get back at him? To make sure he was very and truly dead? I shook my head. “I’ll raise him. I can do my fucking job, whether you believe that or not, Beelzebug.”

Lucifer’s face soured, but then he kissed my forehead. “I know you can, my love, but you don’t have to.”

“What are you saying about raising the minotaur?” Tiamat said. She had put on a bathrobe, just a thin one that hugged her every curve and still revealed a lot, but it was better than nothing. Which was the alternative.

Lucifer hugged me close. “He was apparently murdered in his cell at the human prison not too long ago. Christine just called with the news.”

“The minotaur,” Nyx said, and I wiggled out of Lucifer’s hold and even managed to sit in my own chair instead of the Devil’s lap. My goals had shifted over the past few months, and today, this was an achievement, and I knew it. “He was a powerful human sorcerer,” the blind god went on. They used their cane to find a chair opposite the dragon mother. Lucifer moved his chair at the head of the table to the left, toward my own, until he was sitting right next to me.

“You knew him?” I asked. “How did you know the minotaur?”

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Meet the Author

Alexa Piper writes steamy romance that ranges from light to dark, from straight to queer. She’s also a coffee addict. Alexa loves writing stories that make her readers laugh and fall in love with the characters in them. Connect with Alexa on Facebook or Instagram, follow her on Twitter or TikTok, and subscribe to her newsletter!

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NEW RELEASE: The Devil’s Wings by Alexa Piper #PNR #DarkFantasy #LGBTQ @prowlingpiper

Lionel is in love with the Devil. It has taken the necromancer and police consultant a while to acknowledge it, and the impatient and overeager Lucifer didn’t always make it easy for Lionel to come to terms with his emotions, but Lionel is finally in a place where he wants to open up to his boyfriend.

After some well-deserved vacation time, Lionel finds himself back at work, and he is welcomed by a potential murder case that quickly turns into a mystery he is determined to solve. Lucifer has been having his own thoughts on intimacy and sharing things, and there are small details about himself he has yet to tell his necromancer.

In-between an unusual case of corpses at the beach, Lucifer reveals his secret to the man he loves. As a result, the Devil will have to learn that a secret once revealed cannot be unmade by any deal. And Lionel will have to find a way to make his peace with the fact that loving a god and letting that god love him is just not as easy as he thought.

Available at Changeling Press

EXCERPT

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2022 Alexa Piper

Lionel

The Devil on top of me, filling my mouth with his woodfire and spices scent while he kissed me senseless — that was not something I’d thought I’d get used to. And yet here I was, Lionel Hawkes, professional necromancer and newly minted demigod, on my back in Lucifer’s bed, and somehow pleasantly used to what he was doing do me. Craving it, even. His bedroom was warm although the January light filtering in through the curtains, half covering the floor-to-ceiling windows, was bleary and cool, and of course, so close to him, there was no chance of me getting cold.

“Babe, turn on your stomach,” he said, barely even breaking the kiss as he caged me in with his arms, with his body.

“I need to get up and get to work,” I said. “The Holiday break is over.” And it had been a long one, because Christine, my boss, had either been bribed by Lucifer or she’d wanted to be rid of me for a little while. The outcome had been the same: Lucifer, capitalizing heavily on my time and attention from around mid-December to New Year’s just a few days ago. And me, secretly loving it. A lot.

Lucifer grumbled. “It’s still early, and you won’t be late. You are also not leaving this bed before I’ve had you. So, on your stomach.”

I shivered at his words, but I knew this was not a discussion I was likely to win, and so I slowly turned. Of course, with him being all over me, I felt his hard cock brush up against my own, and that made me give him a small, needy noise that I couldn’t quite contain. Which I just knew he’d love.

“Mmh, you’re so hot, babe,” he said and commenced kissing and nipping at my neck when I was finally where he wanted me.

I dug my fingers into the sheets, idly wondering when I’d gotten used to his large, circular bed and the high-thread-count gray sheets, but when he was starting to rub his cock in my crack, all idle thoughts went overboard.

“Babe, I’m doing magic to you,” he said. “Still your own.”

“You do not need to tell me every fucking time, Lucy,” I said, but he just growled and bit my newly pierced earlobe, pulling the stud with his teeth so hard I gasped… with the pure pleasure the pain brought me.

“Yes, I do,” he said. “Now still your magic, while I make you slick for me.”

Well, okay, maybe he did. But honestly, I’d not been able to use my demigod magic since that one time on Midwinter where we’d had a run in with Michael, who’d just been an angel dick all over again. I was beginning to think that my Awesome Demigod Sled Dog Magic ™ was more of a hit or miss kind of deal than anything I’d ever really get the hang of. Not that that was bad. I’d always been a necromancer, and while I didn’t care for the smell of decay, I wasn’t skittish, and I loved the work.

As Lucifer’s magic touched me, I couldn’t quite smother the gasp that escaped me. His sex magic was just so incredibly intimate, more intimate than every single time he’d lubed me up with his skilled and teasing fingers. I could feel him clean me and leave me slick — much slicker than I needed to be, but I’d come to learn he liked it that way, and when the Devil liked something, there was very little I could do to change that, even less to keep him from getting it.

Since he was still rubbing his cock between my cheeks, he was very soon spreading that slickness, and pretty soon after that, I was squirming under him, just trying to get some friction of my own.

Lucifer chuckled. “Ah, babe. Do you want me?”

“Yes. Or do you need a written invitation?” I said, knowing perfectly well that this would get me — something. I just didn’t know what.

“Mmh. So mouthy again. You were far tamer when I had you tied up and fed you my cock back in Scotland.”

“Well, I didn’t have to be anywhere when you did that, did I? I have to go to the station at some point this year.” I wanted to add I had another necromancer to train, but that would really get Lucifer angry. He definitely did not appreciate me talking about other men while I was in his bed, and if I did, he might not let me come. And I wanted to come. Sometime this year.

“Ah, sweet. How you test me. I have to remember to do something about that mouth of yours in the mornings.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Alexa Piper writes steamy romance that ranges from light to dark, from straight to queer. She’s also a coffee addict. Alexa loves writing stories that make her readers laugh and fall in love with the characters in them. Connect with Alexa on Facebook or Instagram, follow her on Twitter or TikTok, and subscribe to her newsletter!

GUEST BLOG: How Not to Date a Dragon Lord by Stephanie Burke #DarkFantasy #PNR #LGBTQ @FlashyCat @changelingpress

How Not to Date a Dragon Lord is now available from Changeling Press!

About the Book…

War is coming.

Vissar sends Alita, his Dragon Lord who speaks with his voice, to the village below with orders for the upcoming invasion. Trouble is, Alita would rather burn the village to the ground than speak with any of them.

But orders are orders and Alita, along with her lover, the runaway princess Suli, in tow must venture down to the village. Explosive secrets are bound to be revealed and Alita is forced to deal with her own painful past as a dragon sacrifice.

Meanwhile, the army is advancing, Vissar’s heat is rapidly approaching, his mate Nithe is off finalizing business in the dragon lands, and the idiot Prince Ranid keeps advancing, despite the drama unfolding in his own camp…

Get it here >> https://www.changelingpress.com/how-not-to-date-a-dragon-lord-how-not-to-13-b-3303

———–<—-(@

Now let’s hear from the author, Stephanie Burke!

Hello Loves!

How’s it going? I hope you are all doing well. I have been tasked with writing a blog post so fiendishly brilliant that everyone will stop to read and unicorns will invade the earth and everyone would really get down to teaching the world to sing in perfect harmony… and since none of that appears to be happening right now, I’d better just shut up and tell you about my book. 

Book Two of the How Not to Date a Dragon trilogy, How Not to Date a Dragon Lord is a story that is very near and dear to my heart. It features a first for me, a lesbian couple where one main protagonist is asexual Domme to a degree and War Master of the Dragon’s Army while her partner is an ex-Princess with an attitude that I find refreshing. To be fair, I loved writing both Alita, the Dragon Lord and Suli, her Princess who rescued herself. Designing both characters was a new experience for me and I relished the chance to write their snappy dialogue as well as creating hot and steamy scenarios where they could explore their sexuality and help center each other for the task that awaits ahead of them.

You see, at the end of book 1, How Not to Date a Dragon, war is iminiante and it is up to our omega Black Dragon Ulvissar and his alpha Red Dragon partner Nithe, to help come up with a plan to protect their castle built deep inside their mountain, the village that keeps trying to sacrifice the women he has been collecting as his horde, and prepare their own army for the fight that is about to happen on their doorstep. But before any of that can happen, the village below has to be prepared as to the reality of what is about to land on their doorsteps. That means Alita, the first sacrifice to survive and bond with Ulvissar, has to return home to the place that had forced her sacrifice generations ago and had become quite successful as the result of the sacrifices of her and the women who were chained and given over to the dragon… even though a sacrifice of women is the last thing that Ulvissar wants or needs. Yes, Alita has to go back to the place that essentially gave up her and the hundreds of women that followed through the centuries as sacrifices to keep the village safe… and now Alita has to help protect them when they couldn’t even take a moment to remember the women they had essentially thought they murdered and who’s blood and death made up the foundation of their success. 

How on earth can Alita forgive such a betrayal when even the descendants of her own family fail to remember who she was? And she has to help save these people who have seemingly created a religion out of murdering young women who are not all virgins, not all willing scarifies, and have become the fatted calves to keep their successes growing. It’s good that Princess Suli is trained at diplomacy because as far as Alita is concerned, they can all go to H-E-double-Hockey Sticks on an express pass.

I had fun creating this trilogy within the How Not to Date series because of dragons. Seriously, I am obsessed with dragons. Half of my tattoos are dragons and in my mind, they always were a force of comfort and fierce protection. So when I proposed How Not to Date a Dragon, How Not to Date a Dragon Lord, and the final book of the trilogy, How Not to Date a Dragon Master, I knew I had to pull out all of the stops for my beautiful winged terror lizards. I have written about other dragons before in the past, in the Dragon Stone Trilogy for example,  but I never before have I had the chance to create such brilliantly twisted scenarios and tropes in my writing as I have created for this trilogy. 

There is the inclusion of the Alpha, Omega, and Beta world and the dragons’ insane anatomy and physiology that I laughed myself nearly into a headache creating. There are strange and comedic travels of an army being led by an idiot prince to start a war that he knows he can’t win but, you know, he needs the glory of battle to quench the flames of passionate anger that fill him at the escape— uh, death of his bride. And then there is the bloodthirsty horde of battle-trained women who are eager to put all of their training to a real test. Did I mention broody omega dragons in heat because my broody omega dragon is in heat and demands that his alpha gives him everything… or else. Trust me, they are not your average alpha/omega couple and if Nithe, the beautiful Red Dragon fails in his duty— I shudder to think of what Ulvissar the Black Dragon will do to him… and I’m the one who wrote the crazy story. 

As delightful as it was to create the world that Alita, Suli, Vissar, and Nithe inhabit, they are still not my favorite in the How Not to Date series line-up. I came up with an idea to create a series set in different worlds around a major theme, bad first dates, and it exploded into the award-winning monster that it is today. I first shared this idea with author D Renee Bagby/Zenobia Renquest as we were traveling home from a writer’s convention. The first book, How Not to Date an Alien was all about misconceptions and biases we have and are likely to run across when dating outside of your race or in the first book’s case, your species. I think we both laughed so hard at the idea that I knew that I had to create more funny bits of escapism that lined up with some of the worst first dates imaginable. Before we made it home, I think we outlined about seventy How Not to Date books, and even more were requested… ie demanded with threats of bodily harm… from my beautiful readers whom I would not be here today without the help of. Seriously, a bunch of insane readers decided I should write How Not to Date a Skunk and How Not to Date a Human without any input from me. I was delivered an ultimatum… write these books or we will come up with more outrageous books for you to write. I wrote the books much to my reader’s delight, and peace was restored to the land until they demanded How Not to Date a Centaur but I managed to pull that one off too so the flaming pitchforks didn’t come out. 

I have to say, out of all my novellas in the How Not to Date series, my favorite is How Not to Date a Bear. While explaining the plot to D Renee Bagby, she is often instrumental in my foolishness, we laughed ourselves stupid over the plot. What if a bear shifter was accidentally shaved bald by his unknowing mate just before he had to go out and prevent a war between Russian Grizzly bear shifters and their neighbors The Brown bear Shifters who think they are an invading army trying to take over their territory when all they truly want is to live in peace. It may have also something to is with this photo of a bald bear landing in my lap.

See that expression? That is the look that my poor bear wears when he discovered what his mate had done. We laughed ourselves silly over the plot and D Renee liked it so much that she poked and prodded until we came up with How Not to Date a Bear, too… Cougar Boogaloo which was the title in my head but we just stuck with How Not to Date a Bear, Too. 

So there you have it, some of my favorite How Not to Date series books and a glimpse at How Not to Date a Dragon Lord. I hope you all take the time to explore these and other titles I have available and that you find as much delight in reading them as I found in writing them.

Love you, Loves!

Stephanie “Flash” Burke

CHARITY ANTHOLOGY – Firestorm #charity #anthology #PNR #DarkFantasy

Firestorm: A collection of short Paranormal Erotic Adventures from the Changeling Press family of authors. Royalties donated to Changeling’s Save the Quiet Kitty Fund  in memory of Camille Anthony.

If You Can’t Stand the Heat — Camille Anthony: In human shape or his natural prairie dog form, Edison was normally the most laid-back of males, except when his mate, Reba, crossed the line…

Catan’s Fire — Jade Buchanan: Asad needs to teach his mate what happens to submissive Felidae who disobey orders…

Brimstone by Mistake — Alice Gaines: Heaven’s made a mistake. What will Lucifer do when the Man Upstairs wants Sally back?

Shifting Priorities — Anne Kane: When the sexy hunk Jexx picks up in the station bar turns out to be more than human, she has more to worry about than her profit margin.

Burning Down the House — Isabella Jordan: Will Katurah use her powers now to end it all — or will she give in to a fiery lover?

Stockings — Jade Buchanan: A gorgeous female cat shifter, an enticing pair of stockings, and a very interested lady wolf produce enough heat to burn down the house…

Britta’s Beast — Kate Hill: When Max and Britta met at a convention for members of magical law enforcement, they seemed like a perfect fit…

Available TODAY at Changeling Press

EXCERPT

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2022 Changeling Authors

If You Can’t Stand the Heat by Camille Anthony

He stood in the doorway of the Bakery’s kitchen, belt dangling from his hand, watching his mate of forty years bustle about preparing refreshments for the library shindig about later that evening. As always, the sight of her had his heart doing that funny leap in his chest, his cock echoing the movement behind the zipper of his jeans. After all this time, it still only took a look, a whiff of his female’s scent to have him hard as a cactus spike.

Along with his surging lust came a powerful burst of love and he knew if prairie dogs didn’t mate for life, he’d still never let this woman go. He’d die without her. However, that didn’t mean he was blind to her faults.

His Reba was an incorrigible busybody, continually putting her finger in other folk’s pies. He understood her interfering tendencies were part of her caring nature and that would have been fine as long as she contained her meddling within the family.

She didn’t.

He wasn’t mad at her. Edison’s smile was full of masculine anticipation. The punishment of her infraction was going to be intensely pleasurable for both of them.

Check out more multi-author anthologies by the Changeling Press authors!

Invisible Love by AJ Graham #DarkFantasy #PNR @changelingpress

Gregory tried to become immortal, but his spell went wrong and transformed him into a bodiless spirit. For five hundred years, he’s roamed the world trapped between life and death, cut off from all human contact — until he meets Linda, a young psychic who can feel his presence.

Shy, lonely Linda hasn’t felt a man’s touch for a long time. Then one night, a gorgeous man appears to her in a vivid, erotic dream…and the next day, she hears his voice in her mind. At first, Linda thinks she’s going crazy, but she can’t ignore the man’s desperation, his hunger for human contact. When he asks her to open her mind to him, she can’t refuse.

By inhabiting Linda’s body, Gregory discovers, he is able to feel again. After five hundred years without pleasure, he is overwhelmed by the sensations. Linda, meanwhile, discovers that having Gregory’s spirit inside her is surprisingly erotic. Though she can’t see him, she can sense his essence moving through her, even feel his hands on her body. Before long, she finds herself falling in love with this strange, lonely, passionate man. As her feelings grow, Linda vows to help Gregory escape the empty half-life of a wandering soul and become human again…but to save him, she must make a terrible sacrifice.

Available Today at Changeling Press
or Preorder for June 17 at online booksellers

EXCERPT

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2022 AJGraham

Gregory floated above New York City. He stared through the patchy clouds, at the tiny skyscrapers and high rises below. At night, the city glowed with a thousand points of light, like a mirror image of the starry sky. Cars crawled through the maze of streets like ants through tunnels. How faraway, how unimportant everything seemed from this distance.

Wind howled around him. A few fat snowflakes spiraled down from the sky. Gregory felt no cold. He had felt nothing for hundreds of years. He wondered — for the thousandth, the millionth time — if he would ever escape this empty, gray half-life, or if he was doomed to wander the Earth as a spirit for all eternity, unseen, unheard. Alone.

He drifted down toward the city, like a feather on the wind. His feet touched the ground. He walked down the sidewalk. People hurried past, talking loudly, cell phones glued to their ears.

It was that time of year, between Thanksgiving and Christmas, when the whole of America seemed caught in a frenzy of commerce. People clutched brightly colored shopping bags filled with toys and the latest electronic gadgets. Store windows glowed with warm light. Signs boasted low, low prices to entice consumers. Passersby walked through Gregory’s dim, translucent form as though passing through a cloud of smoke. Their thoughts and memories swirled through his mind, like leaves on the wind. He took no notice. The thoughts of the living were dull and repetitive, centered around the details of their hectic careers and their confused love lives.

He stopped outside an apartment building and looked up.

On the third floor, a window glowed with lamplight. He stared at the window, wondering why it held his attention. He felt a peculiar tug in the core of his being. Something drew him toward that square of warm, yellow light. He floated off the ground, hovered outside the window, and peered in.

A young woman sat upright in bed, legs tucked beneath her, an open book in her lap. Long, wavy hair spilled over her slim, pale shoulders, hair so dark a brown it was almost black. It shone with a soft luster in the lamplight as she twined a lock around two fingers. Her full lips were parted, relaxed, as her eyes moved over the lines on the page. She wore only a sleeveless, white cotton nightshirt and a pair of white panties.

Gregory stared. An ache of longing pierced his soul, so deep and sharp it was almost pain. How long had it been since he had touched a woman? How long since he had tasted soft lips, or felt his cock sink into a warm, welcoming body? The sight of this woman — so delicate, yet so lush, like a tropical flower — made him hunger for things he could never feel again. The hunger roared inside him like a caged tiger.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

AJ Graham has a passion for cold weather, unusual beers, and anything otherworldly.  Dragons, demons, shapeshifters and psychics have always populated their imagination, but sometimes the real world can be just as fascinating and mysterious.  And no matter the genre, AJ has always loved stories about soulmates connecting.  Whether it’s instant, explosive passion or a slow burn, the power of two (or more) minds and bodies coming together to form a greater whole is always a story worth telling.  AJ lives in the Chicago suburbs with their husband.

SPOTLIGHT: Clandestine by J. Hali Steele #DarkFantasy #Gay #PNR @jhalisteele

Joshua’s spending more and more time at club Sub Rosa. It’s time he emerges from the shadows to take a more active role. Pursuit of the aloof nightclub owner obsessed with voyeurism carries him over the edge. The stranger’s scent awakens a desire Joshua has not felt in centuries. He vows to have the man. If it means bleeding dry everyone close to either of them, so be it.

Mason Kildare, owner of Sub Rosa, doesn’t play in his own backyard. Instead he frequents other night spots in search of fulfillment. A reserved disposition coupled with gray hair keeps most of the young men he finds attractive at arm’s length, but not Joshua. Joshua storms Mason’s defenses, breaking them down one by one. By the time he discovers Joshua’s bloody secret, Mason has lost more than his body — he’s given away his soul.

Available Today at Changeling Press

EXCERPT

All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2022 J. Hali Steele

Two groups of patrons had already been discouraged from reaching the corner table, but from previous visits, Joshua knew the spot would soon be occupied. His quarry was later than usual, so he keep his long legs stretched across the aisle. Used to wearing button down shirts, tonight his collar strangled him. He tugged at the neck before undoing another button.

Three youthful revelers snatched attention as they noisily closed in on the table. “Excuse us, dude.” Guy didn’t even look twenty-one.

“You’re excused.”

Largest of the gathering took control. “We want that table. Move your legs. We can get by.”

“Please find another table.” Instinct told Joshua this would get messy. “You passed two.” All this effort to crawl in bed with a man for one night. Sensation sliding down his spine belied that thought. One night my ass. Normally dead calm, Joshua’s annoyance toughened his words. “Stand against the wall for all I care.”

When the one closest to the big man stepped near and bumped his legs, Joshua stood. At least two inches taller, he leaned in and quietly warned, “Touch me once more, and I’ll break every finger on both of your hands. Then how will you play with your tiny dick?”

Stepping back, one of the followers informed his friend, “I don’t mind another table.”

“I mind, and since you’re up, we’ll slip by.”

Spying the man he came to see enter and stroll to the end of the long bar, Joshua decided not to waste more time. He grasped the man’s hand and bent it at the wrist, intending to cause a sprain. “Take. Another. Table.”

“Jesus Christ! You son of a bitch!”

“I’m struggling not to break your hand.” Joshua opted for wrapping his fingers around the cretin’s thick neck. Allowing one fingernail to puncture skin, he effortlessly lifted the idiot an inch off the floor — not enough for customers to notice, but sufficient for the bastard to know he was out matched. “I asked nicely, but you had to take the Lord’s name in vain.”

His friends shuffled backward. “They’re deserting you.” Letting the man’s feet touch the floor, Joshua smiled before licking blood from his finger. “Ah, it’s your lover’s birthday. Fucking him later should make keeping your balls attached a prime concern. Turn and move on.”

“Holy shit, you’re nuts!” The man’s eyes popped wide in their sockets.

“I know.”

That rattle him more.

“Hopefully he never discovers you’re screwing his best friend.”

“I… how… Hold on a minute.”

The waiter picked that moment to make rounds. “Can I get you anything else?” The waiter noticed the intruder and shoved a napkin into his hand. “You’re bleeding.”

“I — I’m good.” He rubbed his neck. “Sorry.”

“I’ll have a lager.” Joshua sat back in his chair. “Send a bottle of your best champagne to this young man’s table.” His boyfriend deserved a decent night out. The blood Joshua had accessed allowed him to deliver a mental prod. Go.

“Uh, thanks, man.”

“Enjoy your partner’s birthday.”

“That was severe.” Sten Majković, Joshua’s best friend, the vampire king, and a royal pain in the ass, sat across the table.

Joshua swiveled in his seat to face Sten. “Who invited you?”

He’d die for this man. Damn near had on two or three occasions. But Sten picked the worst of times to surface. More disturbing was the fact Joshua hadn’t sensed his presence. Not a single drop of his blood pulsed in alert. Joshua was one of less than a handful of vampires who had the pleasure of Sten’s lifeforce, so his manifestation without prior warning should have been impossible, and elicited concern. Scrutinizing his guest, Joshua realized Stan was fingering a coin Joshua had bequeathed him. That provided some explanation. The talisman gave his king insight into Joshua’s life that no one else experienced.

The handsome man Joshua had in his crosshairs was wearing an impeccable navy suit. He strode toward the table Joshua had taken such pains to keep available. His heralding scent and the way his lean body moved had undoubtedly helped distract Joshua, enabling Sten to gain residence at his table unnoticed.

His leader’s intense brown eyes wouldn’t miss Joshua’s interest.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

J. Hali Steele wishes she could grow fur, wings, or fangs, so she can stay warm, fly, or just plain bite the crap out of… Well, she can’t do those things but she wishes she could!

Multi-published and Amazon bestselling author of Romance in Paranormal, Fantasy, and Contemporary worlds which include ReligErotica and LGBTQ stories where humans, vampyres, shapeshifters and angels collide-they collide a lot! When J. Hali’s not writing or reading, she can be found snuggled in front of the TV with a cat in her lap, and a cup of coffee.

Growl and roar — it’s okay to let the beast out. — J. Hali Steele