Their Virgin Secretary is Available Today!!!

“I want strings… I want to be tangled up in all her strings.”

Cover-Faces-5Their Virgin Secretary

Masters of Ménage, Book 6

Three determined bosses…

Tate Baxter, Eric Cohen, and Kellan Kent are partners for one of the most respected law practices in Chicago. But these three masters of the courtroom also share a partnership i

n the bedroom, fulfilling the darkest needs of their female submissives night after night. Everything was fine—until they hired Annabelle Wright as their administrative assistant.

One beautiful secretary…

Belle felt sure she’d hit the jackpot with her job, but in the last year, the three gorgeous attorneys have become far more than her bosses. They’re her friends, her protectors, and in Belle’s dreams, they’re her lovers, too. But she’s given her heart to them all, so how can she choose just one?

An unforgettable night…

When her bosses escort her to a wedding, drinks and dancing turn into foreplay and fantasy. Between heated kisses, Belle admits her innocence. Surprise becomes contention and tempers flare. Heartbroken and unwilling to drive them apart, Belle leaves the firm and flees to New Orleans.

That leads to danger.

Resolved to restore her late grandmother’s home, she hopes she can move on without the men. Then Kellan, Tate, and Eric show up at her doorstep, seeking another chance. But something sinister is at work in the Crescent City and its sights are set on her. Before the trio can claim Annabelle for good, they just might have to save her life.

TheirVirginSecretary_highresBuy Links:

Kindle: http://amzn.to/HXThBB

Nice Girls Reading Naughty Books Chat!

Nice Girls Reading Naughty Books

Last night I spoke to Bernadette Walsh with Nice Girls Reading Naughty Books!

Check out our chat here!!
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1,001 Dark Nights presents A Scanguards Wedding by Tina Folsom

A vampire will risk everything to marry the woman he loves.


April2014 Tina FolsomSilent Bite

A Scanguards Wedding
(A Scanguards Vampire Novella)

by Tina Folsom

Newbie vampire Oliver and Ursula, the woman he saved from a blood brothel, are finally tying the knot. But with Ursula’s old fashioned Chinese parents arriving in town for the traditional wedding, chaos soon breaks out—with Oliver always one step away from accidentally revealing to his soon-to-be in-laws that he and his extended Scanguards family are vampires.

And midst all the chaos and confusion, a stalker lurks and threatens to tear Ursula and Oliver apart before they can blood-bond.

Buy The Book:

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Biography:

Tina Folsom was born in Germany and has been living in English speaking countries for over 20 years, the last 11 of them in San Francisco, where she’s married to an American.

Tina has always been a bit of a globe trotter: after living in Lausanne, Switzerland, she briefly worked on a cruise ship in the Mediterranean, then lived a year in Munich, before moving to London. There, she became an accountant. But after 8 years she decided to move overseas.

In New York she studied drama at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, then moved to Los Angeles a year later to pursue studies in screenwriting. This is also where she met her husband, who she followed to San Francisco three months after first meeting him.

In San Francisco, Tina worked as a tax accountant and even opened her own firm, then went into real estate, however, she missed writing. In 2008 she wrote her first romance and never looked back.

She’s always loved vampires and decided that vampire and paranormal romance was her calling. She now has 15 novels in English and several in other languages (Spanish, German, and French) and continues to write, as well as have her existing novels translated.

Visit Tina Folsom’s website and follow her on:

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NOTE: For a chance to win a Kindle eBook of Tina Folsom’s A Scanguards Wedding, leave a comment and tell me what attracts you to a book cover. US only please.

Their Virgin Concubine is only 99¢, for a limited time!

TheirVirginSecretary_highresBeen wanting to try the Masters of Menage series? Lexi Blake and I have priced Their Virgin Concubine at 99¢ for a limited time! http://amzn.to/1dHwGmB

Blurb:

The country of Bezakistan – renowned for its wealth and the beauty of its deserts

Piper Glen is thrilled when Rafe and Kade al Mussad ask her to visit their country on a business trip. Madly attracted to both, the virginal secretary knows that neither of her intensely handsome bosses desires her. But every night she dreams of having them both in her bed, fulfilling her every need.

Rafe and Kade have finally found the perfect woman in Piper. Sweet and funny. Intelligent and strong. Before they can reveal their feelings, the brothers must fulfill an ancient tradition. Every sheikh must steal his bride and share her with his brothers. They have thirty days to convince Piper to love them all forever.

The country of Bezakistan – notorious for its danger…

Sheikh Talib al Mussad knows his villainous cousin seeks to take his throne. If Talib and his brothers fail to convince the beautiful Piper to love them, all will be lost. After meeting Piper, he knows he would risk everything to possess her heart.

Khalil al Bashir has long coveted his cousin’s rule. Without a bride to seal their birthright, his every wish will come true. If Piper falls for them, he will lose everything but Piper can’t love them if she’s dead…

 

The Romance Reviews 3rd Anniverary Party!!

TRR March 2014

1,001 Dark Nights presents Captured in Surrender by Liliana Hart

A bounty hunter with an attitude and a warrant out for her arrest gets tracked down by the sexy deputy who puts his wits — and cuffs — to good use to convince her true love really does exist.

March2014 Liliana HartCaptured In Surrender

(A MacKenzie Family Novella)

by Liliana Hart

Bounty Hunter Naya Blade never thought she’d step foot in Surrender, Montana again. Especially since there was a warrant out for her arrest. But when her skip ends up in the normally peaceful town, she has no choice but to go after him to claim her reward. Even at the cost of running into the cop that makes her blood run hot and her sense of self-preservation run cold.

Deputy Lane Greyson wants to see Naya in handcuffs, but he’d much prefer them attached to his bed instead of in a cold jail cell. She drove him crazy once before and then drove right out of town, leaving havoc in her wake. He’s determined to help her hunt down the bad guy so he can claim his own bounty—her.

Biography:

Liliana Hart Bio PicLiliana Hart is a New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author in both the mystery and romance genres. After starting her first novel her freshman year of college, she immediately became addicted to writing and knew she’d found what she was meant to do with her life. She has no idea why she majored in music.

Liliana is an avid reader and a believer in all things romance. Her books are filled with witty dialogue, steamy sex, and the all-important happily-ever-afters her romantic soul craves. Since self-publishing in June of 2011, she’s sold more than 1.2 million ebooks all over the world.

Visit Liliana Hart’s website and follow her on:

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Buy The Book:

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Amazon UK
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NOTE: For a chance to win a Kindle eBook of Liliana Hart’s Captured in Surrender, leave a comment and tell me what’s most likely to make you try an author who’s new to you. US only please.

 

The Romance Reviews turns 3!!!

TRR March 2014

Theirs to Cherish Release Week: Day 5… TORN

Excerpt-5Last day of the special excerpts for Theirs to Cherish (Wicked Lovers 8), which is now available! This week, I’ve featured a series of excerpts from the book just to entice you. Thank you for checking in all week and commenting for your chance at the daily prize!! Thanks also for entering the giveaway below. Very soon one lucky winner who’s entered will be drawn. That lucky person will when the very first, hot-off-the-press print version of Their Virgin Secretary! Good luck!

 

After managing to separate Callie from Sean, Thorpe talks to her alone. Will the feelings simmering between them draw them together, will Sean come between them, or will she slip away from them both for good?

Excerpt

Callie paced in her little red robe, her manic gait taking her from one side of the room to the other. Goddamn it, she wasn’t wearing a bra. He’d bet she hadn’t bothered with panties, either.

Most notably, she’d stripped off her collar and was clutching it in a tight grasp. His heart stuttered. Was she removing it for good?

As Thorpe cleared his throat, he tamped down encroaching relief and told himself to take things one step at a time.

She turned to spear him with a resolute stare. “You said you wanted to know when I’m leaving. It’s now. I quit.”

#

 CALLIE stared at Thorpe. He had almost no reaction to her words.

Gee, it would have been nice if you’d given a shit. Then she squashed the thought. It wasn’t his fault that she cared far more about him than he did for her. She’d known for years that Thorpe had the power to yank her heart out of her chest and crush it beneath his very expensive Salvatore Ferragamo loafers. It sucked that she’d been stupid enough to let him.

Even though she cared deeply for Sean and—if she could believe his passionate declaration—he loved her, that didn’t mitigate her attachment to Dominion’s owner. She’d always been a little screwed up. This just proved it.

Thorpe wandered farther into the room and sat on the edge of the bed. “I appreciate the notice, but I need a bit longer than ten minutes to replace you, pet.”

“Sorry.” She tossed her hair over her shoulder and stared out the dark window. He was far too beautiful to look at. “You’ll find someone else soon. You won’t miss me.”

“You have no idea how I’ll feel. Sit down, Callie.”

His tone told her that no wasn’t an acceptable answer. Damn it, he intended to interrogate her about Sean. Callie couldn’t take it now. Leaving them both was hard enough . . .

She fought down panic and turned back to him. “I can’t. I have to get away.”

“Not yet.” He pointed to a spot on the bed right beside him and didn’t say a word until she flopped down. “Good. Sean knows I’ve come and that I intend to understand what happened tonight. Tell me everything.”

If Thorpe was here with Sean’s blessing, she wasn’t going to worm out of this conversation, damn it.

As she set Sean’s collar down on her nightstand, Callie mentally sorted through everything she could tell him. He must know that she had feelings for her Sir. More feelings than she was comfortable with. Thorpe missed very little, so he was no doubt aware that Sean had never taken her past her limits, ignored her safe word, or acted in any way out of line. Besides, if she was going to skip out on Thorpe after he’d kept a roof over her and ensured her safety for four years, she owed him more than a flat-out lie.

Wringing her hands, she forced herself to meet his intent gray gaze and confessed something else that had been niggling in the back of her brain. “Something is . . . off about him.”

That clearly piqued Thorpe’s interest. “In what way?”

Callie tapped her toes. She had to express her concerns about Sean without giving her past away. Putting Thorpe in the terrible position of  harboring a known fugitive wasn’t how she wanted to repay his kindness.

“He asks a lot of questions. I don’t like them.”

Thorpe sent her a wry smile. “If it’s about your limits, that’s to be expected. Pet, he’s a Dom. It’s his job to get in your head. Frankly, you need some untangling. You might find it uncomfortable—”

“He doesn’t need to know how many brothers and sisters I have, the name of my first pet, if I ever took special trips as a child . . . He seems really focused on things that shouldn’t matter if all he wants is a sub in a club.”

It was nothing Thorpe did or any change in his expression, but Callie had the distinct impression that he was enraged. “Has he always behaved this way with you?”

“Yeah.”

“You should have told me the first time,” Thorpe scolded.

“It’s not your problem.”

That only made him more forbidding. “You’re always my concern, Callie.”

The possession in his voice excited her more than she wanted to admit. “Well, I’m telling you now. What he wants to know seems weird.”

“I agree.”

“Just like it’s weird that he walked into Dominion and immediately had some sort of hard-on for me.”

“That’s not weird. That makes him a man.”

She rolled her eyes. “There are plenty of other subs here.”

“None of them are you.”

Damn it, sometimes Thorpe could—after weeks of being a giant pain in her ass—say the nicest things. She teared up. Gawd, she was really going to miss him.

“But . . .” he went on. “I don’t like the questions he’s asking you, either. I don’t see how they’re relevant to helping you down your submissive path.”

“Exactly. The other thing is . . . In almost every other way, he’s too good to be true.”

theirs to cherish_front mech.inddThorpe regarded her intently. “Do you think he’s a player?”

“No.” But something wasn’t quite right. “I’m not sure what to make of him, though.”

Because if Sean was a cop, a bounty hunter, or an assassin, wouldn’t he have either dragged her in or done her in by now?

“What did he say to you tonight that made you want to run away from him?”

Oh. Ouch. Yeah, she needed to remember that Thorpe never hesitated to go for the jugular.

“Nothing he meant to be threatening or scary.”

“Good to know. Be more specific.” Thorpe’s tone sharpened.

“It’s . . . personal.”

“Dodging my question isn’t an option, pet.” That warning note in his voice made her shiver. “I’d rather not see you leave over whatever drivel he spewed. Tell me. Maybe I can fix the situation.”

It was embarrassing enough that he’d probably seen her and Sean having sex. He’d been so close, he couldn’t have missed their climatic finish. “You didn’t hear?”

“Callie, I’m not getting through to you, so let me be plain. You will tell me now or I will paddle your pretty little ass.”

“You can’t do that!”

His smile contradicted her. “I’ve informed Sean that it’s a distinct possibility. Besides, you’ve taken off his collar. If you think he’s being less than honest, you don’t intend to put it back on, do you?”

“Why would I? I already told you, I’m leaving.”

“Not until I know why.”

She jumped to her feet, gaping at him. “You’d keep me here against my will?”

Thorpe crossed an ankle over his knee and brushed an imaginary thread from his trousers. “Your tone suggests I should be uncomfortable with that idea. Until you’re honest with me, I assure you I’m not. Furthermore, if Kirkpatrick is troubling you, he’s nothing I can’t handle. Am I clear?”

Callie blinked at him, processing everything he’d delivered in that low, almost relaxed voice. She wasn’t fooled. Under his urbane, oh so cultured façade beat the heart of a predator. She’d seen him take rivals apart both mentally and physically. Thorpe wasn’t someone a sane person crossed.

Callie weighed her words carefully. “Sean made me realize I’m not cut out for a Dom/sub relationship.”

“Really, pet?”

She sidestepped his question. “And I’m a little bored with Dallas. Los Angeles is calling my name. Every time Xander comes by and talks about his trips to the city, it sounds fabulous. It’s just time to move on.”

Thorpe said nothing for a long moment. He simply stood and towered over her, that charcoal stare boring into her. “There will be consequences for anything less than totally honesty, so think carefully, Callie. Would you like to recant or amend your statement in any way?”

Shit. Thorpe knew something. Or everything. Had he heard Sean’s declaration of love?

She tossed her head back and thrust her hands on her hips. This was going to be ugly no matter what. Might as well go for broke. “Butt out and stop acting like you’re my father.”

He stilled. “That’s one role I will never fill, but I have no problem putting you in your place.”

Callie didn’t even have a moment to wonder what his silky vow meant before he hauled her into his arms and dragged her, kicking and screaming, back to her bed. He sat, wrangling her with embarrassing ease, then spread his long legs and laid her over his lap, face down.

“You are not going to spank me!” she insisted.

Thorpe didn’t hesitate for an instant. “I am. I told you there would be consequences. You should know I always keep up my end of a bargain.

Theirs to Cherish is Available Now. For more information and links to your favorite book store, click here!

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Theirs to Cherish Release Week: Day 4… PASSION

Excerpt-4If you’ve been following me all week, you know I’m featuring a series of excerpts from Theirs to Cherish (Wicked Lovers 8), which is available now! Check back every day for something new – and a prize at the end of the week for one lucky winner who’s entered the giveaway below. What’s at stake? The very first, hot-off-the-press print version of Their Virgin Secretary a few precious days before the April 15 release! There’s also a special something for one blog commenter chosen at random from the comments about the excerpt below. I’ll choose a new winner for that contest every day this week!

 

Callie and Sean as they share passion for the first time—with Thorpe as witness. He knows her better than anyone and has loved her for four long years. He isn’t about to give up or let her go . . . even if he should. Though he prepares to do battle with his new rival, he’s got hang-ups of his own. Is he destined to always be on the outside looking in?

Excerpt

STANDING in the shadows of Dominion’s dungeon, Mitchell Thorpe couldn’t miss the orgasm that wracked Callie’s body, the fact that she screamed another man’s name, or the unabashed way in which she shared herself with that fucking suspicious Scot. As much as he wanted to deny it, the sight and sounds damn near felled Thorpe like a hatchet to the chest.

He’d hoped that insisting on so many restrictions when he’d allowed Sean Kirkpatrick to collar Callie would frustrate the man. That the asshole would leave. Thorpe didn’t trust Kirkpatrick. Something was off about the guy . . . But no matter what he’d done, Sean had proven goddamn single minded when it came to the girl.

Damn it! Thorpe hated the sight of the other man surging deep inside Callie, where he ached to be himself. Clutching the little silk robe he’d retrieved from her room the second he’d realized she meant to let Sean fuck her, he closed his eyes, refusing to watch the bastard come inside her.

The reasons Thorpe could never have Callie were carved into his brain. And even though he’d beaten the dead horse mentally enough to recite the rationale in his sleep, he clenched his jaw and reminded himself again. There would always be fourteen years, two months, and three days’ difference in their ages. Besides, he knew Callie wasn’t likely to stay with him much longer. Forever was out of the question. More important, he could never give her the kind of love she craved and deserved.

Cursing under his breath, he dared to open his eyes and stare at the wild tangle of Callie’s black hair brushing the fair, flushed skin of her back. Desire gnawed at him, biting deep. He’d always believed that by walking away from her that December night two years ago, he could prevent her from breaking his heart. Thorpe didn’t find it comforting to be proven so wrong.

Kirkpatrick shouting out his love for her gouged him in the gut. Hearing the Scot admit his feelings for Callie aloud not only made him jealous as hell, but it proved the man had balls. Thorpe was almost in awe. But Sean obviously didn’t understand her at all. Thorpe had no doubt what Callie’s response to the man’s unexpected declaration would be.

Right on cue, she stiffened and shook her head, then scrambled off his lap. Kirkpatrick stood and tore off his condom, trying to zip up while reaching for her with an expression meant to be gentle and calm.

Thorpe snorted. Wrong approach again.

It didn’t surprise him at all when Callie whirled around, eyes squeezed shut tightly, arms over her breasts, and ran—straight into him.

When she would have stumbled back from their collision, he gripped her shoulders. Thorpe tried not to look at her breasts again. Why tempt himself with what he couldn’t have? She blinked up at him, fear and anguish mixed on her face. Guilt followed.

“Let go,” she begged. “Please.”theirs to cherish_front mech.indd

Those words alone told Thorpe how raw Kirkpatrick had scraped Callie. Normally, she’d try all kinds of foot stomping, demanding, and plain ol’ manipulation before she resorted to showing her soft, submissive side to anyone. Whatever the man’s game, Thorpe had to give Sean credit for opening her emotions far wider than expected.

Over her shoulders, he eased the robe he’d retrieved in case her second thoughts about having sex with the Scot set in. Nice to see that he still knew her so well.

He sent her a sharp shake of his head. “Not yet, pet.”

Callie shoved her arms through the holes and belted the robe tight, sending him a defiant glare. But tears still lurked under it. The fucking Scot playing with her heart had rattled her. Thorpe hated the asshole for it even more. His need to protect her growled, chomping at the bit to tear the collar from her neck and free her. He couldn’t do that, but he had every intention of having a “chat” with Kirkpatrick.

“Why are your hands on Callie?” Sean demanded. “She’s my sub.”

“You’re under my roof, and she’s obviously upset.”

“Which is why I need to talk to her. She and I should be sorting this out. Alone.”

Normally, he would agree. But he wouldn’t risk Callie by leaving her vulnerable with a man he swore had some hidden agenda. A fraud. Besides, Kirkpatrick didn’t know her like he did and never would. “At Dominion, my word is law. Play by my rules or you’re welcome to leave. Your choice.”

Sean clenched his fists and ignored him, focusing on Callie. “Talk to me, lovely. If I upset you, help me understand why.”

Thorpe felt her stiffen in his grip, then she looked up at him, her gaze imploring. He understood instantly. She’d developed feelings for this man and hated to hurt him. But he also knew that she didn’t dare let him close.

“Callie, go to your room. I’ll be in to see you in a minute.” Thorpe motioned for Zeb, one of the dungeon monitors.

“You can’t send her from me. I didn’t hurt her,” Kirkpatrick protested.

With a shrug, Thorpe blew Sean off and addressed the approaching DM. “Take Callie to her room. No one enters until I say otherwise. And she doesn’t leave.” When Callie gasped, he sent her a knowing look. “Do you have something to say, pet?”

Since she wasn’t about to admit that she’d plotted to flee the club, she remained silent. But he knew it as sure as he knew himself. Kilpatrick hadn’t just plumbed her physically. He’d pried her heart open, and she was preparing to react to that in the only way she knew— by running. Already, she’d mentally packed her bags. Thorpe forced down his panic and reminded himself that as long as she was still here, he could fix the situation. The easiest solution would be to toss the damn Scot out on his ear.

Callie looked ready to grind her teeth as she stomped off. Zeb followed with a grin and a wink.

Thorpe vowed to deal with her little fit of pique as soon as he’d unmasked this fraud and rid him from her life. “My office. Now.”

He didn’t wait to see if Kirkpatrick followed. He’d rather the fucker find the exit and save him the breath. But when he reached his personal domain and rounded his desk, the Scot stood in the portal, all but foaming at the mouth.

Sean slammed the door, enclosing them in a privacy steeped in thick air. “You have no right to separate me from Callie.”

“I’m responsible for the welfare of all the subs under this roof. Until I know why she was running away from you in tears, then yes, I do.”

“That’s a piss-poor excuse. You’re jealous because you want her for your own.”

Thorpe took his time answering, sitting in his leather chair and staring the charlatan down. Idly, he wondered when and how he’d been stupid enough to tip Sean off. Xander had pointed it out, too, a few months ago. Maybe he was getting sloppy.

“I have not laid a single finger on the girl for any reason in nearly two years. So what you believe I want is irrelevant. Let’s talk about what actually happened.”

Sean sat, poised on the edge of his chair as if he’d rather fight. “I restrained and blindfolded her, then I flogged her. She reached a peaceful subspace. Then when she came out, I made love to her. It’s been an emotional night. That’s all.”

Is that what the idiot thought? “That’s not how Callie works. Have you been too busy fucking her to get to know her?”

“You’ve watched me like you’re her bloody keeper, so I suspect you know that’s not true.” Kirkpatrick raised a brow at him. “Just like I suspect you’ve been too busy getting to know her to fuck her.”

Theirs to Cherish is Available Now. For more information and links to your favorite book store, click here!

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Theirs to Cherish Release Week: Day 3… GOOD-BYE

Excerpt-3Theirs to Cherish (Wicked Lovers 8) is available! Don’t forget—this week, I am featuring a series of juicy excerpts from the book! Check back every day for something new, along with a prize at the end of the week for one lucky winner who’s entered the giveaway below. What’s at stake? The very first, hot-off-the-press print version of Their Virgin Secretary before the April 15 release! There’s also a daily prize for one random person who leaves a comment about the excerpt below.

 

Callie manages to give a bit of her heart and her submission to Sean, but he is determined to capture her entire soul. She wants him just for tonight . . . before she says good-bye. Who will win this battle of wills? And how will the outcome affect Thorpe?

Excerpt

Sean reached for a blanket in a nearby stash, wrapped it around her, then pulled her into his lap. “Don’t beat yourself up. Yes, I wanted more. But tomorrow will come.”

Not for them, it wouldn’t.

“I could share myself more readily if you shared with me,” she ventured. At least it sounded like a good excuse.

Settling back on the bench with a raised brow, he drew her against his chest. “Is that so?”

“What we have feels so . . . one sided. I don’t know anything about you.”

He drew in a sharp breath. “I was raised by my grandparents in Scotland. My father served in the military in far-flung parts of the world. My mother preferred London to parenting. I attended local schools, finished university, learned how to hold my own in a fight and drink a few pints without getting too pissed. I work in project management.”

Callie gathered up her courage. “Are you married? Taken?”

Sean let loose a hearty laugh. “Has that been worrying you all this time? No, lovely. I was engaged about a decade ago, but I was already married to my job by then. We ended things amicably. I’ve been alone since. And my life was empty as hell without you.”

That shouldn’t get to her. He shouldn’t. But damn, he did. She might as well be honest about this, too. “I didn’t know how much my life was missing until you walked into it. I need more of you.”

If they had nothing beyond tonight, she wanted him in every way he would give himself tonight.

Scrambling off his lap and between his feet on the concrete floor, Callie braced her hands on his knees and glanced at his cock. Then she blinked up at him, pouring her desperation into this one entreaty. “Please . . .”

 #

SEAN stared down at Callie, his breath trapped in his chest, his cock about to explode. Her blue eyes, framed in thick black lashes and silently pleading, pierced his chest. Hell, they dug into his heart. He had to hold his fucking head together. But he wanted her more than he thought possible. More than he had words to express.

Of all the damn women to fall for . . .

Normally, he’d remind her that he was the Dom, and she shouldn’t wheedle for the terms she wanted. He knew a pretty piece of manipulation when he heard one. But Callie wasn’t herself tonight. Her breakthrough actually worried him. On the one hand, he’d finally peeled away layers of armor to reveal the soft woman beneath her bratty attitude. On the other hand, everything about her—especially that haunted look in her eyes—reeked of desperation. Of good-bye.

His gut twisted. Had something spooked her? Or someone, like him? There were a lot of reasons that letting her go wasn’t an option. If he had to rearrange his priorities, so be it. But no matter what, he must keep Callie beside him.

“Lovely . . .” He didn’t know what to say. His throat felt tight. His breath thickened as her fingers dug into his thighs.

She didn’t reply, just silently beseeched him with those sad eyes. How much unhappiness had she known to be so walled off from everyone? Right now, Sean could only imagine, but he wanted to know. And he wanted to heal her.

If he put her off now, she’d only bolt sooner. As it was, he suspected that she planned to be gone when he came back for her tomorrow. But if he gave in to her tonight . . . That was the wild card.

He’d ask her if she planned to flee, but she would only deny it. He knew Callie so well in some ways, yet she remained the most intriguing theirs to cherish_front mech.inddmystery in others.

Sean swallowed his doubts down. Fuck it. If he had this one chance to keep her, he was going to take it and deal with the metric shit ton of consequences later.

“Never mind.” She began to scramble to her feet, the unmistakable hurt on her delicate face wrenching.

He braced a hand on her shoulder and pushed down gently. “Stay. I haven’t said no.”

Her gaze skittered away. “But you didn’t say yes. I haven’t earned it.”

“That’s not true. You gave me a great deal of effort tonight. You fought through fears and surrendered a part of yourself to me. I appreciate how hard that was for you.”

Holding his breath, he reached for the snap of his trousers. He was crossing a dangerous line, but he silenced the concerns screaming inside him and focused on Callie. On growing his bond with her and giving her what she needed. Right now, he suspected she ached to feel wanted.

His zipper went down in a nearly silent hiss. Her gaze fell between his legs as he reached in to shove cotton out of his way and take his cock in hand. Fucking hell, he couldn’t remember the last time he’d been this hard or desired a woman so much. Something about Callie had tugged at him from day one. Sean wished he could say it was the sheer challenge of conquering her. He’d always liked using his wits or brawn to overcome obstacles. Who didn’t like winning?

But Callie had become far more than a conquest.

Slowly stroking his erection, blood rushed south to engorge him even more as her wide gaze fell on him, imploring. He tingled just from her longing stare.

“Do you want to touch me, lovely?”

She tore her gaze away and zeroed in on his face, then she nodded. God, this could make everything go sideways—fast. Any time he resisted Callie, it was something of a miracle. He should have known his willpower wouldn’t last.

Slowly, he eased his hand away. Within moments, she wrapped her own around his length, and he sucked in a hissing breath at the contact. Her skin was so warm, her touch soft yet deft. It was a tease. Seeing her silken fingers on him, her stare taking him in . . . Fuck, it was beyond heady. Nearly seven months without a woman, and he was so ready to blow. But he had a deep suspicion that if any other perched between his feet, he wouldn’t be half so moved.

With her elbow braced on his thigh, Callie glided her fingers up and down his cock, that gaze of hers boiling his balls. But it was the yearning wonder on her face that truly seared him.

On her knees now, she leaned in. She didn’t ask first, just opened her mouth to him…

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