Sadie Matthews wasn’t sure what to think when her dead fiancé waltzed back into her life. Not to mention wondering how he would get along with her other two werewolf mates, Elijah and Luke. With all three pulling on her heartstrings for attention, she needs to figure out how they all fit together because her heart can’t break into three pieces. Just as she’s about to figure it out, danger comes to the wolf packs.
Wolves are winding up dead, and everyone is looking to her to find out who is behind it. With this new turn of events, she needs her men behind her even more. Can she discover who is behind the murders? Will she be able to bring peace between the rising tensions of her three mates?
She jumped when she heard Luke, one of her wolf mates. He came into the kitchen wearing nothing more than plaid pajama pants. He slipped his arm around her waist and nuzzled her neck. His beard tickled her skin as he kissed her. It was then he held her closer and growled.
The strange wolf who had entered the house looked up.
“Who is that?” Luke asked.
“I-I’m not sure. I… He looks like Greyson.”
The other male stopped eating mid-bite and dashed out of the kitchen onto the patio. Sadie broke loose from Luke’s grasp and ran after him, but the fleeing wolf disappeared into the densely wooded backyard. The full moon shone bright silver as it sank beneath the trees. The night would be over soon. She wanted to go farther into the forest, but Luke caught her hand.
“Hey, come back inside and tell me what happened. He’ll come back if he’s hungry enough. Sometimes strays are drawn by the smell of food or the energy of the pack. They might linger for a day, but they normally wander off. If he shows up in the morning, then Elijah can talk to him. Come back to bed.”
Sadie shook her head. “No. He’s more than some random wolf. I know it.”
Luke sighed. “If he is, then we can look for him in the daytime with Elijah. I missed you in our bed.” He slithered his hand underneath her robe and found her patch of curls. His finger massaged her clit and he fondled her breast with the other hand. His desire flared along the mental bond they shared. He trailed his tongue over her throat. Sadie sank into the bliss he evoked in her. The more he worked her clit, the more her thoughts of the strange wolf fell away. Luke squeezed her nipple until her breaths came in small pants. His fingers slid inside her. Sadie ground against his cock as it poked into her ass. “Do you think you can put him out of your mind for a few hours?”
“What are you two doing down here?” Elijah, her other wolf mate, came into the kitchen. “I think I know what you’re doing. Shame on you for not inviting me.” Elijah kissed her.
Lust strangled any thoughts of the mysterious wolf that had dashed out of the house. Their emotions mingled with hers until she didn’t know where she ended, and they began. As Sadie sank deeper into their yearning, the animal nature of their wolves surged forward. All thoughts of the pleasure they wanted to draw out flew out the window. She needed them.
Crymsyn Hart is a National Bestselling author of over eighty paranormal romance and horror novels. Her experiences as a psychic and ghostly encounters have given her a lot of material to use in her books. Vampires, grim reapers, shifters, and other paranormal creatures tend to end up in her books no matter how hard she tries to keep them away.
She currently resides in Charlotte, NC with her hubby and her three dogs. If she’s not writing, she’s curled up with the dogs watching a good horror movie or off with friends.
Lee is just the transporter for the broken werewolves his team rescues from the Brotherhood. His latest pick-up goes badly when one wolf bolts, and his van is shot at, making it tough for him to keep it together. He’s got sick and badly injured wolves to care for until someone else comes to get them, though, so he heads for his cabin in the woods, knowing he has to keep his charges safe.
Drew has been in captivity a long time, helping keep his friends alive by giving of his own healing energy. Lee is like a whole new world for him, because Lee’s life force bolsters his, and Drew knows he’s found the other half of his soul. Now he has to learn he can’t save everyone if he wants to stay with Lee. Can they find a way to do what they must and still love each other?
One of the wolves bolted at the first vehicle change, and he knew he should have gone after, but the other five had a rendezvous with one of Abby’s contacts, and he had to get them to the, well, not church on time.
That idea made him laugh out loud.
They were getting worse, and he was beginning to worry he wasn’t going to be saving many more.
The last one in the first truck was so skinny, so exhausted he was barely breathing. The run had taken it out of him. Lee lifted him, needing to get him moved. “Come on, buddy. We have to keep moving, okay?”
Something made him frown, a whiff of gunpowder on the air, and he tossed the wolf in the cab of the new truck, heading off and leaving the empty truck behind. It was registered to someone else, just a piece of shit to move bodies with.
This truck was his.
He knew it backward and forward, how fast it could go, how it could take a turn.
The wolf whined gently, and Lee nodded. “I know, buddy. I’ll come back and look for him once you guys are safe. He seemed strong. They’ll be chasing us, not him. I’m sorry.”
He floored it, heading up into the mountains, pushing it. He couldn’t go home, but he could go to the cabin. It was safe, secure, warm, and well supplied.
Defensible. “We’ll get you guys safe until the other team can come. I swear it.”
Poor babies. So skinny. So tired. This shit pissed him off. There was always someone out there willing to exploit, whether it was humans or animals or shifters like them. He hated it.
What he did wasn’t much, but it was something. He could get these guys somewhere safe, somewhere they could heal or die, whichever they needed to. At least they would be free. Usually the ones he picked up were men, but more and more often they were leading out wolves. He had no idea if this meant they were weaker, stronger, just different. It didn’t matter. They were free.
The wolf next to him wiggled over enough to put a dry nose against his hand, a soft, grunting sigh sounding. Yeah, he got it. This was exhausting. “Rest, man. I’ll have food for you when we stop.” Good food, not the kibble-like crap they’d been fed at the Brotherhood.
He thought he heard the heavy tail wag, and that made him smile. “Right. Sometimes that’s what you need. I have milk. I have hamburger. I have chicken. Good stuff. There’s even an elk roast in the freezer.”
A sharp whine sounded when he said elk. Yeah. That was the reddest, gamiest meat. It would have the most nutritional value.
“We’ll start with the milk and defrost the elk, then. You hold on, buddy, and I’ll help you.”
That tail thumped again, and he would swear the mangy coat looked better, fuller. Trick of the light, he was sure.
“The cabin is remote, but it’s warm and safe. We’ll hide out there for a while, let you guys heal.”
That nose was colder now when it brushed him, and those teeth grazed his wrist when he reached out to stroke the wolf’s ears. A thank you.
“Oh, you are special, aren’t you? You wait, you’ll be okay. Soon you’ll be strong.”
Panting, the wolf closed his eyes, then the breathing evened out, and Lee felt alone again. That was okay. He was used to it.
He kept looking over, though, because he needed to see that skinny chest rising and falling.
It was important to keep them all alive, but this guy really spoke to him. Something about the way the wolf responded told him the spirit was willing.
Texan to the bone and an unrepentant Daddy’s Girl, BA Tortuga spends her days with her basset hounds and her beloved wife, texting her sisters, and eating Mexican food. When she’s not doing that, she’s writing. She spends her days off watching rodeo, knitting and surfing Pinterest in the name of research. BA’s personal saviors include her wife, Julia Talbot, her best friend, Sean Michael, and coffee. Lots of coffee. Really good coffee.
Having written everything from fist-fighting rednecks to hard-core cowboys to werewolves, BA does her damnedest to tell the stories of her heart, which was raised in Northeast Texas, but has heard the call of the high desert and lives in the Sandias. With books ranging from hard-hitting GLBT romance, to fiery manages, to the most traditional of love stories, BA refuses to be pigeon-holed by anyone but the voices in her head.
Kya: I’m a demiwolf — half wolf, half human, and both species despise my weird mix of genes. Despite the fact I strip for a living, I’ve hung on to my virginity for twenty-two years. Until I got knocked up by a big, bad wolf. Now, I’m going to bring another demiwolf into the world, but his father will never know.
Levi: I’m all wolf, and Alpha of my pack, committed to keeping our bloodlines pure. Then on the night of my bachelor party, I hooked up with a stripper. I just wanted to teach the demiwolf a lesson, but the sex set me on fire. My wolf claimed her and now I can’t get her out of my head. But what if she won’t accept me?
I cringed when I saw the billboard proclaiming, Girls! Girls! Girls! It was a tacky way to get attention, and I hated it. Averting my eyes, I turned the corner, pulled into the lot, and parked my old pickup behind the club. It was my first night at Show ’n Tails, and a definite step down from my old job, but I’d been fired and needed a gig ASAP.
The incident wasn’t my fault. There were two of us on the stage and Brandi was so sloshed she invaded my space and fell on her ass. As if that wasn’t enough, she accused me of tripping her. Well, one thing led to another and we both got canned. Another girl told me that Show ’n Tails was hiring and I went for an audition. The manager was an asshat, but he doesn’t ask too many questions. I like to keep a low profile.
This isn’t the life I wanted, but taking off my clothes pays the bills, and I won’t apologize for trying to earn a living. At least I’m not selling my body, just the illusion of sex. A lot of girls up their game, but not me. My virginity is the last piece of self-respect I own and I won’t give it up to some creep for any amount of money.
The heavy backdoor slammed shut and locked behind me and the manager shot me a dirty look. “Hey, Kya. You’re late.”
“Sorry, it won’t happen again. And my name is Raven when I’m working.”
Marty’s lip curled in a sneer. “Yeah, yeah. Whatever. You better get dressed. I mean undressed.” He snickered.
I ignored his disrespectful ass, and walked over to the dressing room. A row of dented lockers lined one wall. A wide counter with a lighted mirror behind it ran the length of the opposite wall. Everything stunk from sweat and cheap perfume. The long vanity was cluttered with makeup and no one made room for the new girl, so I started changing next to my locker. When a spot at the mirror opened up, I grabbed it and started working on my wild black curls.
Marty stuck his head in the door. “Hey, fresh meat, you’re on next.”
I knew he meant me. I was the newest girl there. Half of me cringed, the half that’s wolf. The half I keep hidden. Or is it a quarter of me I keep hidden? I guess it depends on how you look at it. A full-blooded wolf-shifter is already half human, although they’ll never admit to it. My father was a wolf, but my mother was human.
Does that mean I’m… Oh, fuck the fractions. No matter how you look at it, I’m a demiwolf.
But I look human. I checked my body in the mirror. Yep, a hot as hell human female stared back at me. Tacky, but sexy. Nothing says stripper like stiletto platform heels and a thong that shows off a girl’s booty. I slipped on a white, halter mini-dress with a drape-neck, an open back, and a side slit. Then I ran my hands through my curls and gave my lips one last swipe of purple-plum gloss.
It’s so much easier to call myself human and blend in with the majority. The humans are clueless. They know we exist, but they believe we keep to our own side of the tracks. The wolves are a different story. They can smell my lupine pheromones, but they don’t want me. I’m not pure. Fuck ‘em. At least I can make a living among the humans. Stripping might be a trashy job, but it pays for the life I’m trying to live. It’s not the life I want, but it’s all I’ve got. I used to dream about being accepted by my father’s people. Fat chance. They wouldn’t even accept him because he had a human lover and a half-breed kid.
My parents never married, but they lived together — sometimes. When my father was around, I was daddy’s girl. But all too often, he would disappear as if he had no family. My mother would drink and tell me that he liked to hang out with his own kind in places where we weren’t accepted. When he came back from his trips, he’d act cold and resentful, but it wouldn’t last long. Eventually, he’d tell me he loved me and everything would be okay again. I thought nothing would keep us apart for good. I was wrong.
One day he didn’t come back. We found out he was killed in a bar fight. One of his so-called friends called me a mongrel and Dad died defending me. My mother cried and cried. She said this was why they never wanted kids. So I was what… an accident?
I couldn’t blame them. Not really. Life was hard enough without being born with this weird mix of genes. I hated myself, too. I wished I’d never been born. At least I could make things easier for my mother. As soon as I finished school, I left home and never looked back.
While waiting to go on, I thought about my routine — floor work, then pole dancing, then back on the floor. I’m not nervous anymore about being naked in front of a roomful of men. I was at first, but now I focus on my moves. I’ve been scorned and dehumanized all my life, so I like to emphasize something I can do well — dance.
I peeked through the curtain and watched Candy finish her routine. There’s a mirror behind the stage and a pole in the center. Chairs surrounded the stage for customers who wanted direct contact with the dancers. I watched one of the men put a bill in his mouth. Candy shoved her breasts in his face and used them to grab the money. There were hoots and hollers and more men waved bills at her. She collected all of her tips, then picked up her clothes, and ran off the stage.
The DJ, sitting in an alcove nearby, introduced me. “Next up is a beautiful lady who’s new here. You’re gonna see her naked for the first time tonight.”
Well, it’s not a complete lie. It’s my first time naked on this stage.
“Give Raven a nice warm welcome.”
My heartbeat skyrocketed as I stepped through the curtains and climbed the three steps to the stage. The opening bars of my music started up and I began to move.
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Four women find themselves thrust into a world where fantasy and reality intertwine in a more than pleasurable way. Where every single move made is completely for her satisfaction. Where even the darkest desires are fulfilled. Where the men of their dreams have one goal — to leave them sore, hoarse and still begging. A girl could get used to this…
Publisher’s Note: Executive Decisions contains the previously published novellas By The Numbers, One Night Only, Hidden Agenda, and Research Only.
“Good morning, D and S Attorneys, how may I help you?” Zoe Carter answered the phone professionally, as always. She always did her best no matter what job she was doing.
“You can start by making sure the damned coffee is fresh.” She grimaced. Unfortunately, her employers weren’t so congenial. From the sound of it, Sebastian Collingsworth wasn’t in a particularly good mood. “And get me a decent shirt from Julian’s.”
“Yes –” The line went dead. “– sir.” She sighed. “Good morning to you, too, asshole.”
Working for vampires sucked. Literally. Zoe Carter was just thankful she wasn’t on the menu.
She was the accountant and receptionist for Dorian and Sebastian Collingsworth, owners of D&S Collingsworth, Attorneys at Law, and had been for the last ten years. Because she was the most senior staff member — OK, so she was the only staff member — she saw the men at their best and worst. She also knew D&S Attorneys was only part of what the two big vampires did.
As a rule, the pair weren’t exactly morning people. Other than that, they didn’t seem to have any of the weaknesses she’d always thought vampires had. Instead, they had the arrogant belief they were superior to every being on the planet. Like most men she knew.
One thing the pair had on other men was the second job. They also worked for a very high-class escort service for women with particular and… intense tastes. On more than one occasion, they’d called her to come in before dawn to help one or both of them to their underground chamber at the office.
At first, she’d worried about them getting caught — and her being trapped in the middle of some illegal prostitution ring. Being paranoid made her hyper aware of the people around her, especially when the local sheriff was a frequent visitor. There seemed to be several people who not only knew about the side business the two vampires had going on, but also that they were vampires. When she’d questioned Dorian about it, he’d laughed at her, saying not everyone was so naive to believe everyone in the world was human. As if the whole friggin’ town of Mount Bell was populated with vampires!
There was no denying their sex appeal. Zoe creamed her panties every day she went to work. These men exuded sex. The nasty, raunchy kind. They definitely fit the part they were apparently expected to play. She had heard them talking on more than one occasion about enjoyable bouts of kink. It was definitely the kind of sex nice girls like herself didn’t participate in.
It was a good thing she was so good at her job. As it was, she had to constantly recheck her figures. She found concentration almost impossible at times. She was too busy trying to catch glimpses of the two sexy men.
The only bad thing was she couldn’t stand either of them. Oh, they were nice enough to almost everyone. Just not to her. The only reason she stayed was because every time she tried to leave, they’d give her a raise, or a “continuance bonus.”
Aside from that, they were the biggest assholes in the world. They never smiled at her, never told her she did a good job, and treated her like a servant. It was almost like they wanted her to hate them.
As to today, she’d had this morning’s conversation with one or the other of them several times over the years and she knew better than to come back with only a “decent shirt.” Before she left, she put on a pot of dark roast and took the company credit card. She’d get a complete change of clothing for each of them. Julian would know what she needed.
By the time the brothers entered the office via the back entrance, she was back with everything they could possibly need.
“God, I need a Scotch.”
Dorian looked like he’d been in a barroom brawl rather than on a date with some rich man or woman who needed companionship for the night and didn’t want complications. In fact, it looked like there had been plenty of complications last night. Blood and dirt streaked his clothing and face. His hair was a matted mess instead of the shiny, silky black it normally was.
“Just wash up and change clothes, Dorian. Griping about it isn’t helping.”
“If I’d known he was a junkie, I wouldn’t be in this situation, Sebastian. You’re the Psy. You should have warned me.” Both men were clearly agitated, and the longer Zoe listened to them, the more alarmed she grew. Dorian obviously expected Sebastian to have warned him about the drugs, but Zoe knew it was very likely Sebastian didn’t know. He could sense strong emotions, not read minds, and the strong emotions he could sense was what he fed from. As it was, she was terribly afraid they’d done something awful.
“What did you two do? If you’ve killed someone, I swear I’ll be the first one to go to the police.”
Dorian rolled his eyes and Sebastian gave her a scathing look. “Of course we didn’t kill anyone,” Sebastian snapped.
Dorian barked a sharp laugh. “No, but I may later. Doesn’t our contract state that drugs and alcohol are strictly prohibited?”
“Would you two stop for a minute?” As Dorian undressed, Zoe grew increasingly alarmed. When he took off his suit jacket and turned around, she saw nasty gashes on his back. They were deep and angry looking, already getting red at the edges as if infection was imminent. She approached Dorian and carefully touched the edge of one such gash.
“Fucking hell!” He jumped and whipped around. “What the hell do you think you’re doing?”
“This happened last night?” Zoe ignored her employer’s outburst. She was used to it. When she reached out again to touch the irritated skin to see if it was warm, Dorian rounded on her.
“Don’t fucking touch me! The only thing you need to concern yourself with is giving me the clothes I asked for, then getting the hell out!”
Zoe had never seen him like this. Sebastian gripped Dorian’s shoulder as if to hold the man back. Dorian looked absolutely furious. What the hell had she done to set him off?
“I was just trying to help. You’re hurt.”
“When I want your help, I’ll ask for it, mortal. Now get the fuck out!”
Zoe had never backed down from either of them before, but something in the way he looked at her scared the holy hell out of her. She backed out of the room, grabbed the clothes she’d acquired and tossed them in the general direction of the men. With one last angry look, Zoe turned and walked out the door.
Fuck it. She didn’t need this. She had a vacation coming. They’d have to live with her taking it early. Unless a couple weeks of solitude changed her mind, she wouldn’t be back.
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.
Maddy’s “career” is in personal injury law, representing plaintiffs in silly lawsuits. To escape, she plays SexScape on her tablet computer. One night, after winning a particularly difficult level, she finds herself whooshed into the game itself and confronted by an indecently attractive man who claims his name is Sir Spanksalot. Spanking is not her thing, but blazing hot sex with Spanksalot is.
Spanksalot is sure The League has chosen this difficult but seductive woman to be his mate. Only two problems — she seems to be in love with a man named Samuel. And she has a hang-up about his specialty, spanking. Turns out Samuel is Maddy’s fantasy lover and no threat to Spanksalot. When Maddy discovers the fun of having her bottom gently paddled, the two of them become a match made in SexScape.
Maddy’s game had a new character. She’d played SexScape long enough to hate the little guy with the crown zipping around on his motorcycle. He’d lost her more levels than she could remember, and if she ever got a chance to blast him with some evil weapon, she’d do it in a heartbeat. Only nothing she’d tried had worked on him yet, and she could scream obscenities at him all she wanted. He just kept showing up in the very worst parts of the display at the very worst times and ruining her shots.
But this morning, just as he’d started up with his mind-fuck, someone else had shown up. A woman, also tiny and also wearing a crown. The color of her motorcycle matched her outfit — fire-engine red. She did battle with the man — zigging when he zagged and replacing the tiles he’d destroyed so they arranged themselves in neat patterns that Maddy could fell with one or two moves.
“You go, sister,” Maddy cheered her hero on. For a while, she simply sat and watched the two perform their motorized dance from one side of the screen of her tablet to the other. They seemed to be enjoying themselves, and Maddy couldn’t tear herself away even though it meant being late for work… again. This was too fabulous to miss.
Then, the two of them went to opposite corners. The bikes engines revved, and they flew toward each other. When they met in the middle of the screen, a Screaming-O Bomb went off, and Maddy won level 1023.
Then the room began to spin around her as she fell into a dark tunnel. Nothingness closed around her — an almost complete lack of sensation. She was floating with no sense of up or down, backward or forward. Could the game have done this to her, or was she dreaming? If so, how could she wake herself up? She was supposed to do something, but what? Work, damn it. She was supposed to be at work.
Finally, a light showed in the distance, and she got a sense of direction. She was headed toward it. As it enlarged, she got a view of a landscape. Pretty. No, beautiful. Trees and grasses and sunlight. Warm. She could do worse than end up there, wherever there was.
When the dream or voyage ended, Maddy found herself on her ass in a shallow stream. All around her, tall trees of a kind she’d never seen before reached toward a cloudless sky. Pretty place, but the water wasn’t exactly a spa. More like a refrigerator.
She scrambled to get up, but the stones at the bottom of the stream were slick with water and moss, so she only ended up on her ass once more. Rather than try that exact maneuver again, she used her hands to push herself up and skittered on all fours to the side of the stream. There she found a flat rock warmed by the sun and took a seat to examine her surroundings.
She’d been here before, even though she’d never been any place like this. That made no sense, but neither did the transition she’d just experienced.
She’d been sitting at the table in the dining room in her apartment playing the stupid game that plagued her when, all of a sudden, whoosh… something had sucked her into the tunnel and dropped her here. Was this her prize for winning the latest diabolical level SexScape had used to torment her for weeks? If so, the reward ought to include some sex, even if imaginary. It wasn’t supposed to be a pleasant walk in the woods. Or cold splash, as the case might be.
Why did this place seem so familiar? An inner-city girl, she’d mostly visited trees in parks either close to home or at the end of a bus line. So, why did it seem she’d wandered beneath these trees along the side of the stream? Being here felt like living inside one of her dreams. Or…
No, not a dream. SexScape. She’d deliberately chosen the wilderness path in the game. She got enough city with constant noise and dirty air in her real life, thank you very much. So, she’d settled on woods and beaches and the occasional mountaintop. Scenery like what surrounded her right now.
Hoofbeats sounded in the distance, rapidly approaching where she sat. She got up from her seat on the rock and glanced around for a place to hide. The horse might be out for a run on its own, or it might have a rider. If she got a look at the person as they passed through, she could decide whether or not to call for help. In any case, discretion won out over valor, and she ducked behind one of the big trees.
Sure enough, a few seconds later, the horse and rider showed themselves. But they didn’t dash across the stream to continue on. The rider pulled up the reins, and the horse stopped, breathing hard and stamping a hoof as if impatient to keep going.
The rider — a man wearing a flowing black cape — held the reins tight and glanced all around. Truly, there wasn’t much to see of him because the cape covered him from his neck and over his body. It even draped over the horse’s hindquarters and rump. And the man’s head appeared no more than a shock of platinum hair. Finally, he turned toward her, and she got a brief glance at him before she had to plaster herself against the tree trunk again to hide.
That second or two revealed the most beautiful male face she’d ever laid eyes on. Blue eyes, full lips, and a devil’s smile exposing even white teeth.
“Ah, my lady, why do you hide yourself from me?” he asked.
Maybe he’d seen her, but maybe he hadn’t. She could try to wait him out to see if he’d ride off. She couldn’t try to get away from him. His horse could run her down easily.
“Am I really so frightening?” he said. “Or perhaps you’ve fallen in love with that tree.”
Good question. He didn’t seem dangerous, maybe just a little weird with the “my lady’s” and that yards-long cape. Without knowing where she was, especially if she’d fallen into her favorite game, she could use some help figuring out how to get back home. And for now, he appeared to be all the help she had.
She stepped out from behind the tree. “Can you tell me where I am?”
He jumped down and made a sweeping bow, the cape settling around him. “Sir Spanksalot at your service, lady.”
USA Today bestselling author Alice Gaines has published several sensuous and erotic works. She prefers stories that stretch the imagination, highlighting the power of love and sex. Alice has a Ph.D. in psychology from U. C. Berkeley and lives in Oakland, California, with her collection of orchids and her pet corn snake, Casper.
Calliope thought she knew death. She sees it every day in her job and feels it around her. Who knew when she called to that presence it would appear in the form of Arius?
The connection they make is almost instantaneous. She kisses him on impulse, but she falls in love with him because that’s how her heart works. Teaching a reaper about life might seem strange to others, but Calliope accepts the responsibility willingly. But at the end of their time, he will leave, and Calliope will be forever changed.
Arius’s destiny is to take the scythe of his father and become the Angel of Death. But the woman who can feel his presence piques his interest, and he gives in to curiosity. He thought he knew his purpose — that he was created to be a caretaker of the souls who cross over, and nothing more.
Being with Calliope changes everything and tips his world on its axis. Now he questions his destiny, especially when he longs to be with her. The short time they have together might not be enough, for when the bell tolls, the new Angel of Death must answer.
Calliope slept well knowing that she helped others on their journey, and she’d found her calling in life. She was intuitive, one of the gifts she’d honed growing up. She had gifts for empathy and healing, but nothing she knew could save her patients. When Calliope was at home, she knew in this world she was very alone.
But lately, she’d sensed something more, a change in the ether when one of her patients passed. There was a presence in the room, one she’d never felt before. It didn’t scare her. Far from it — Calliope was more curious than anything else.
That was, until she felt that same presence at her home. Now she was almost hesitant to open the door of her little flourmill house in McAddenville, Georgia. Usually when she got home she would eat and watch some television before taking care of her online class work. It was her way to de-stress and think about something other than death — and at night, she would sleep deeply until her sixth sense prodded her awake. That was when she knew something watched her in her house. Sage didn’t help, and neither did crystals at the door. None of the methods her aunt had taught her to keep her home cleansed did anything.
Either way, she followed her routine — shower, food, TV while her laptop sat in her lap — and tried not to think. Finally, the nightshift buzz wore down and she yawned. After setting things aside, she went to her bedroom and made sure no light would come through the shades. Thank God I’m off for the next two days, she thought as she climbed under her soft covers. Her weighted blanket was like a secure hug that made her feel comforted. From the time her head hit the pillow, Calliope was asleep.
And just like clockwork, a few hours later, her eyes popped open, sleep instantly gone. The presence was there. She could feel it ripple through the ether of the room. The air was thick with it, even as her central air ran silently.
Enough is enough, Calliope thought angrily, and she sat up in bed. “Show yourself. Why are you here?”
Silence. But still she felt it. Calliope closed her eyes, opened her senses and reached out. The quiet only irritated her more. Her sleep pattern was being affected and by God, she would have her answers.
“I feel you,” Calliope said as gently as possible as she got out of bed, hoping the new tactic would lead to results. “I don’t want to harm you. I just need to know why you’re here in my house.”
Calliope stomped her foot. “Answer me right now or I swear to all that is holy that I will get a herd of priests in here to exorcise your ass.”
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw movement. The dimness of the room didn’t matter. It was there, close to the window. The air seemed to shimmer and fold in soft waves while Calliope held her breath. Did she really want to see what would appear in her bedroom? Her mind screamed run, but her feet wouldn’t move. She saw a body form from the feet to the shoulders, slowly. Calliope moved away and the backs of her knees hit the footboard of her bed. There was a head now and, hell, trying to run wasn’t an option for something that could appear at will. Instead, she scrambled back into bed until her back slammed against the headboard.
A man stood by her doorway now, and his dark eyes assessed her. He didn’t smile. His mouth was a firm line on a rugged jaw line that held a hint of stubble. He had dark curls that fell to the collar of his shirt. He wore all black down to the silk tie around his neck. Everything about him was dark including the look on his face, and her heart raced in fright and excitement all at once. She wasn’t crazy; there was someone… something there.
“Who are you?” Calliope asked.
“I thought you knew me. You sensed me, requested my presence, for your patients,” he answered. The tone was deep but soft and held a note of curiosity. “How is it that you can sense me?”
Calliope shrugged. “I can sense lots of things; it depends on who you are. I don’t recall you as a patient of mine.”
A small smile and then it was gone. “No, not a patient, but I have seen you with them.”
“A family member?” she asked.
“No.” He stood with his hands clasped behind his back.
“Then who?” Calliope asked in frustration “And how are you dead and talking to me?”
“Because I am death itself,” he answered. “Or one of them.”
She furrowed her brow. “You’re… you’re a grim reaper?”
“A reaper is fine,” he answered. “I don’t understand why grim was ever added to the title. To some, death is a blessing.”
USA Today Best Selling author Dahlia Rose writes contemporary and paranormal romance with a hint of Caribbean spice. She was born and raised on a Caribbean island and now currently lives in Charlotte, NC with her five kids who she affectionately nicknamed “The children of the corn” and her biggest supporter/long time love. She has a love of erotica, dark fantasy, Sci-fi and the things that go bump in the night. Books and writing are her biggest passion and she hopes to open your imagination to the unknown between the pages of her books.
Publisher: Changeling Press
Cover Artist: Sahara Kelly
Genres/Themes: Box Set, Dark Fantasy, Paranormal, Dark Desire,
Second editions, Single Parent/Pregnancy Romance
Demons from Hell are loose and among us. They shapeshift into handsome, virile forms and like everyone else they look for the perfect mate. But happily ever after isn’t in their criteria. Some unlucky woman will meet her Mr. Right and never guess the horror she’ll bear until it’s too late. But it doesn’t stop with demon spawn. Far worse, the women live through the nightmare only to find themselves raising little devils until the fathers come back to take them all to Hell. And they don’t take no for an answer.
A retreat in the forest becomes the battleground of good versus evil where there are no winners. Children born of darkness will spread through the world with strange powers and abilities, their purpose as shadowy as the woods where they were conceived. One child, born of love, holds the key. Her parents will go to Hell and back to save her from the demons that demand her blood.
Carol turned on her side, settling in for a long night. She breathed deep and was about to exhale when the sound of scrabbling on the roof made her shoot upright. Rolling out of bed she padded to the door and hit the cabin’s lights.
Bea was sitting up on her cot, her single wool blanket grasped in tight fists. “What the hell was that?”
The light in the cabin made Carol feel foolish. “Probably raccoons on the roof. I just couldn’t sleep.”
Bea rubbed her eyes. “We have to be up in a few hours. This is going to be a bad week, I can feel it in my bones.”
Carol managed a smile. “I guess sleeping out in the woods will cure us of this silly jumpiness.”
“Yeah,” Bea agreed, “Cure us or kill us.”
Carol would ordinarily have laughed at the sardonically spoken words except somehow they didn’t seem so funny out here in the middle of nowhere. She turned off the lights, determined to brave it out when a creak on the porch made her wince. “That is no raccoon.”
A movement at the window made her gasp. Was it a bear? A face appeared and Carol almost screamed. When she recognized Alan, she breathed a sigh of relief. “It’s Alan, the camp instructor. I’ll go see what he wants.” Carol was glad to see someone who could lay her fears to rest.
The flannel P.J’s she wore were no threat to her modesty so she had no qualms about stepping out on the porch. She looked to where she’d seen Alan at the window but there was no one there. The short porch was empty.
“Alan?” Carol whispered. “Alan, where are you?”
A sound in the brush to her right made her think twice about leaving the porch. She sensed someone behind her and swung around. A shadow retreated off the porch, disappearing over the railing. A shadow with no human form to cast it.
Carol shivered. This was not funny! If the company thought this was a way to test their employees’ mettle, they’d have to come up with another plan. Carol wasn’t about to go into hysterics over some urban legend scenario set up by the camp. She backed to the cabin door, turning around quickly to twist the knob. A hand grabbed her shoulder, spinning her around.
Carol squealed as Alan’s tan face looked down at her.
“Carol? What are you doing out here? You do know you have to be up in a few hours? This isn’t going to be easy for any of you, believe me.”
Carol could only stare, blank-faced, her heart pounding. “That’s not funny!”
“What’s not funny?”
“Sneaking up on the cabin then hiding. You may get your kicks this way, but we’re not silly girls to scare into peeing our pants over some creaky noises.”
“What are you talking about? I saw your cabin light on and came to see if everything was okay. My cabin is across the meadow. It took me some time to get here.”
“Yeah sure. I saw you at the window then on the porch. Shadows don’t lie.”
“Hey. I’m telling you I wasn’t here. Jeez. Get a grip.”
Carol didn’t like his tone. She thought he was rather nice on her arrival at the camp, but now he was acting like a jerk. It was one thing to pull a stunt then enjoy a laugh over it, but to keep denying it was juvenile.
She backed toward the door. Alan’s hand came up, touching her cheek. “It’s okay, Carol. You’re in my group for the week and I won’t let anything happen to you. Scout’s honor.” He smiled at his lame-ass joke and Carol fought to keep from responding. He was darned cute and in this wilderness, it didn’t hurt to have a friend. She leaned into his hand as it cupped her jaw line.
She swore he was going to kiss her when the door swung open and Bea’s pale face emerged. “Everything okay out here, Carol?”
Flustered Carol replied, “Uh, yeah. Just ducky.”
“You’d better get some sleep,” Alan murmured. “Both of you. Rise and shine at oh-five-hundred for a brief orientation, then we pick up supplies and hit the woods. Janice hates slackers and will ride them the hardest of all. Just a tip from someone who has butted heads with her on more than one occasion. So get some shut-eye. That’s an order from your camp master. You’re under my thumb from now on and the only thing that will save you from the worst week of your life is me. So, my fair damsels, I’ll see you in a few hours. Night.”
Carol wasn’t sure if his tone was kidding or not. Bea was looking at her strangely. Carol shrugged. “What?”
“You and he… Maybe it’s my gambler’s instinct but I see you two having a wild, animalistic time in the forest. Just my luck, I get Hershey bars while you get a hunky man to warm your blood. The story of my life.”
Carol smiled. “Come on. I’m not sure at this point if a Hershey bar wouldn’t be the wisest choice. Something about our camp master gives me the willies.” As they went inside the cabin Carol knew who she’d seen at the window, just as she knew the shadow on the porch had been real. Just what was up with this Alan fellow?
Ciarra Sims is one of the quiet ones you have to watch out for. She lives a plain and simple life in Southern California with her pets, and tries to stay out of trouble. Her writing may be comedic or scary, depending on her mood… or it may sway toward a Regency or even a western… whatever tickles her fancy at the time. Ciarra’s writing philosophy is: “Not to fall into a rut. Keep the reader and yourself wondering, ‘What’s next?'”
Pounding music and writhing bodies fill the dance floor at Night Moves. A small, very elite group of friends called The Bad Boys Club use the place as their personal hunting grounds. Spoilt, powerful, and totally amoral, they use men without thought for the consequences of their actions. But each of these predators harbors a secret desire, a passion, that drives him.
And it hasn’t gone unnoticed.
Three dangerous paranormals on the prowl for a mate stalk the humans. Dark and deadly desires are their calling cards. A demon prince, an ancient vampire, and one of the deadliest werewolves to exist have their sights on The Bad Boys Club and their sensual secrets. Love comes in all forms, even for unscrupulous humans and lethal paranormals.
Publisher’s Note: Bad Boy’s Club contains the previously published novellas Lust and Ice, Into the Darkness, and Haunting the Night.
Kain, AKA Ice, moved through the Friday night crowd on the dance floor of Night Moves, a trendy upscale bar. For VIPs, the club had a decadent, kinky side. The second level was members only and membership was awarded on the basis of money, power, and prestige. The second level was where other jaded predators like Kain roamed.
The bottom level — the dance floor — was where the fresh meat was kept. After all, every predator needed prey.
Kain avoided the teasing hands that reached for him. No one caught his eye, but the night was young. He nodded to the bouncer guarding the secured entrance to the second level. Of course he wasn’t stopped. He was well known at the club.
Across the way he saw his childhood friends sitting at their usual table and made his way to them. Throwing his leather jacket on the back of his chair, he picked up the drink they had waiting for him. “Sorry I’m late. The old man was on my ass again.”
“What about this time?” Jordan asked.
“Some kid yelling I hit his car on the way home a couple of nights ago. He threatened to call the cops — claimed I left the scene of the accident.” Kain shrugged as his eyes scanned the dance floor. “More like a mercy killing. My damn watch costs more than that heap he was driving, but he carried on like a bitch in heat over it. The old man calmed him down, as always.”
“Meaning your dad had his lawyer pay him off.” Allen rolled his eyes. “What’s someone like that doing over here in our part of town?”
“What else,” Hugh said. “Looking for a way to make easy money. Those kinds of people shouldn’t be allowed over here.”
“I never said it happened on our turf. I was slumming.” Kain turned back to the group with a cold, emotionless grin. Actually, he’d been mindlessly screwing some nameless guy in the hopes of losing himself, if only for a little while. “If you know what I mean.”
“Well, you know what they say. If you lie down with dogs…” Hugh shrugged. “On another note, boys, you owe me five thousand apiece. That sweet little thing, Chris? Yeah, I popped his cherry last night. Told you I would. Only took me two weeks, too, to convince him that we were meant to be.”
“You have the devil’s own luck,” Jordan groaned.
“Actually, that’s Kain. I’m still behind him by two virgins.”
“How do you find these guys?” Allen complained. “I’ve only managed to find two!”
“Oh shut up. You’re one ahead of me.” Jordan rolled his eyes.
“Back on subject, fellows. Did I mention how sweetly he cried?” Hugh smirked. “And get this… he’s thinks I’m going to keep calling him now, be his boyfriend. Seems like he was waiting for that special someone, the love of his life.”
“Yeah, right. What a loser.” Allen sneered. “How often did you have to tell him you loved him?”
“Too many times.” Hugh’s disgust was clear as he raised his glass and winked. “Like I’d be caught dead outside of a bedroom with someone like that.”
“Goes without saying.” Kain sprawled in his chair. “So, how’s it looking down there? Fill me in.”
“Jordan and I have a bet going about who’s going to do that redhead on the dance floor first,” Allen said. “He’s the one with the green shirt, there in the middle.”
“Why not do him together?” Hugh asked.
“We plan to.” Allen winked. “I said I’d do him first. We’ll tag team him later. Been awhile since Jordan and I got to do a double penetration.”
Kain’s hearty laugh boomed out, drawing attention from those around them. “I almost feel sorry for the guy.” Kain glanced around the group; several pairs of disbelieving eyes stared back at him. “Okay, no I don’t.”
“The legendary Ice feels sorry?” Hugh’s lips twisted. “That’ll be a cold day in hell.”
“Hell wouldn’t have me.”
“Oh yeah, it would. Personally, I think we’d end up ruling hell.” Allen smirked at Kain.
“Ah, someone has that position, remember?” Jordan shrugged.
“We could be kings, or lords.”
“There’s supposed to be seven princes of hell. One for each deadly sin.” Hugh rolled his eyes as his friends stared at him. “What?”
M.A. Church lives in the southern United States and spent many years in the elementary education sector. She is married to her high school sweetheart and they have two children. Her hobbies are gardening, walking, attending flea markets, watching professional football, racing, and spending time with her family on the lake.
But her most beloved hobby is reading. From an early age, she can remember hunting for books at the library. Later nonhuman and science fiction genres captured her attention and drew her into the worlds the authors had created. But always at the back of her mind was the thought that one day, when the kids were older and she had more time, she would write a book.
By sheer chance she stumbled across a gay male romance story on the web and was hooked. A new world opened up and she fell in love. Thus the journey started. When not writing or researching, she enjoys reading the latest erotic and mainstream romance novels.
Would you be willing to betray the person you love in order to save their life?
Clarissa’s husband Matt is dying of cancer. They’ve tried everything that medicine has to offer, both traditional and experimental, and nothing’s worked. Clarissa spends her days in the hospital, watching the man she loves slip closer and closer to certain death.
When her sister tells her she knows a way to save Matt, but it involves visiting a local club run by vampires, Clarissa is outraged that her sister would believe something so insane. But then she learns the truth.
Braden, the sexy and mysterious vampire who runs the club, does indeed have the means to save Matt, but he demands a high payment in return. He doesn’t want money, her blood, or even her life…he wants something she never expected. Clarissa has a choice—spend twenty-four hours in Braden’s bed or let her husband die.
But what she never foresaw was how much more the vampire would truly want after he’d given her the gift of the darkest magic.
Content Warning: infidelity, light bondage, anal sex, and rough sex
The quiet drip of the IV and the occasional bleep of the monitor were the only sounds in the dim hospital room. Clarissa Blair held the cold hand of her husband, Matthew. Matt’s diagnosis of cancer, just after Christmas, had been a horrible surprise. His condition rapidly deteriorated. The vibrant forty-year-old lay reduced to a thin husk, wasting away in the small room on the fourth floor of Mercy General Hospital. Clarissa could only wait and mourn quietly. She’d tried to hide her pain and stay positive for Matt, but it was getting harder to pretend as he slipped closer to the end of his life.
Their twin seven-year-old daughters spent a lot of time with her mother. She didn’t want them to remember their father as the corpse she saw each day when she came to the hospital after work. Her life was a cycle of working and grieving. She knew the girls missed her, but she just didn’t have the strength to be there for them and keep up with the day-to-day battle of holding herself together. Matt was leaving them.
The sound of the door opening roused her from the dark, sad thoughts. She stood up and hugged the visitor. “Hi, sis.”
Caren, her younger sister, breezed into the room smelling of sunshine and fresh air, in contrast to the stale stench of death she’d come to associate with her husband’s hospital room. “How is he today?”
Her sister’s sadness only added to the weight in Clarissa’s heart. “About the same. The nurse said last night was tough, but he pulled through. He’s a strong fighter.” She knew the last words sounded bitter. He was the strongest man she’d ever known; she couldn’t understand why he couldn’t beat the disease ravaging him. His once handsome face was pale and sunken. Her Matt had left long ago, leaving the dying man in his place. Her Matt would never have abandoned her and their daughters as this man was doing.
For a long moment, Caren looked into her face. She knew Caren wanted to say something, but was holding back.
“Go ahead and say what’s on your mind. You’re always so afraid of saying something that’ll make me cry. I’m past that stage now. Just talk, you’re irritating me.” She knew her shrill statement bordered on cruel, but she didn’t care. What was the use of pleasantries when her whole life was over and she’d never be happy again?
“Sorry, sweetie,” Caren whispered, laying a gentle hand on Clarissa’s shoulder.
The simple act of kindness tore at her soul, making her want to lash out again. She shrugged off her sister’s caring touch. The unwavering love in the deep turquoise eyes, the same shade as her own, sent a little stab of guilt through Clarissa. “I’m the one who should be sorry, but seriously just tell me what’s on your mind.”
Caren gave her a weak smile. “You know I love Matt too.”
Clarissa nodded. Matt had no siblings. She’d married him when Caren was still in high school and he’d taken to her sister as if she were his own. “I know.” She sighed.
“I think I know a way to save him, but I need your help,” Caren whispered.
Ashlynn Monroe is a busy wife and mom. She enjoys writing about anything and everything paranormal or fantasy related. She spends most of her time daydreaming up her next tale of romance.
Demon Guardians: Sexy, seductive demons craving submission. For centuries, they’ve stayed silent, hidden, observing and interfering without being detected. Each guardian demon has a charge to watch over, and it’s always a woman. But there�s only so much a demon can take�
Bale. Alia’s a magnet for trouble. It’s time for her reckless behavior to stop, before it gets her killed.
Aleixo. Monica has terrible taste in men. Aleixo’s drawn a line, and when her current man crosses it, Aleixo will break all the rules to save her from herself.
Rorlan. He’s always been Larissa’s guardian. But now he’s claimed her heart.
Dominguez. A single night of passion with Amara, or a lifetime of love? How is a demon to choose?
Aires. He’s falling in love with Della. But what happens when two sexy as sin demons want you body and soul — and aren’t into sharing?
Publisher’s Note: This Box Set contains the previously published novellas Demon Guardians, Rorlan, Dominguez, and Aires.
I stood in the realm between hell and Earth, watching and waiting. I could feel Amara’s panic, but she didn’t seem to be in any harm at the moment. A paddle lay nearby and her ass was a rosy pink, so I assumed her lovers had used it on her already. I was rather surprised she’d allowed it. After being her guardian for the past seven years, I knew her preferences, and BDSM just wasn’t one of them. Neither was a menage a trois, for that matter. And yet here she was, a collar around her neck, the chain in one of her lovers’ hands. The other man stood in front of her with his cock aimed at her luscious lips. I’d fantasized once or twice about that mouth myself.
She shook her head and tried to back up, but the other man crowded her.
“Be a good slave and suck his cock,” he ordered.
I narrowed my eyes. I knew it was part of the game, but I didn’t like his tone.
She shook her head again and leaned away from the man once more. The one who seemed to be in charge jerked at the chain and hissed at her.
“You’ll do what you’re told. You’ll suck his cock and take my dick in your ass at the same time, and you’ll like it.”
I could see the fear in her eyes and knew things had gone on long enough. What may have started as innocent fun was turning into something sinister. Stepping out of the shadows, I made my presence known. It was one thing to play, but what they had in mind was something else entirely. I moved directly into their line of sight and watched as first one paled, and then the other. My blue skin and black tattoos marked me as a demon, and they recognized that fact. But if there had been any doubt, my nearly black eyes and the small horns jutting from my forehead would’ve sealed the deal.
The chain dropped to the floor and Amara crawled to my side, wrapping her arms around my leg. I might be a demon, but she knew who her savior was in this instance. She made a rather pretty picture sitting at my feet with that collar around her throat. But I doubted it was an image I’d ever see again.
“I do believe she told you no,” I advised the men. “You do know what that word means, don’t you?”
“She agreed to come here with us. She knew what she was getting into,” the first one said, trying to sound braver than he was as he stood there quaking in terror.
“Obviously things were going further than she wanted. The next time a woman tells you no, you’d better listen. And don’t even think of looking at Amara again. Don’t come near her, or think about her. Is that clear?”
They both nodded adamantly.
Gathering Amara in my arms, I blinked us out of there and back to her apartment. Setting her on her feet, I ushered her into the bathroom. After starting the shower, I unfastened the collar from around her neck and tossed it in the trash. Holding out a hand, I waited until she took it.
“You need to wash their scent from your body. It will make you feel better,” I told her.
She placed a shaky hand in mine and let me assist her into the shower. I watched as she reached for the bar of soap and promptly dropped it. Falling to her knees, she tried to grab it again, but ended up letting out a sob and burying her face in her hands.
With a sigh, I disrobed and climbed in the shower with her.
Kneeling in front of her, I gently pulled her into my arms. I was a little surprised when she came willingly. I’d expected her to stiffen up or at least fight me a little, what with me being naked and all, but she seemed to trust me. I hoped I didn’t betray that trust. My hard cock was begging to find a home inside her sweet warmth, but I was doing my best to control the monster.
I tried to read her thoughts, but they were chaotic and I couldn’t quite grasp them. She was obviously still shaken from her encounter, and her mind, as well as her body, was in turmoil. There was nothing for me to do except calm and soothe her the best I could.
“They can’t harm you, Amara. You’re safe now.”
“How did you find me?” she asked. “How did you know I was in trouble?”
“I’m your guardian. I always know when you’re in trouble.”
Her brow furrowed. “Like a guardian angel?”
I chuckled. “Yes, except I’m a demon.”
“I don’t care if you’re a purple alien. You rescued me. I can only imagine what would’ve happened to me if you hadn’t come along when you did. They would’ve forced me, I’m sure. I was stupid to go with them, but it seemed like harmless fun. They didn’t seem like men who would hurt me.”
“You should never enter into something like that unless you know the person and trust them. You could’ve been seriously hurt tonight.”
She shuddered in my arms.
“Let’s get you cleaned up.” I picked up the soap and placed it in her hand.
She swiped the soap down her arms in jerky movements, missing more of her skin than not. Taking the bar from her, I lathered my hands and soaped her skin, using slow, easy motions. I didn’t want to scare her. When I reached her breasts, I wasn’t sure what to do. In a normal situation, I wouldn’t hesitate, but this was far from normal.
Amara took my hands in hers and guided them over her breasts and down the valley between them. As my palms slid down her torso to her hips, her gaze flicked up to meet mine. With her eyes steady on mine, she slipped my hand between her legs. Her pussy was bare and oh so soft. I longed to taste it, to feel that smooth skin against my tongue.
Lust hit me, more mine than hers. I felt uncertainty from her, and from what little I could glean from her thoughts, she wanted reassurance that sex wasn’t about violence. I wasn’t sure what to do… give in to my desire or push her away?
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