Love Matters
by Christiane France
ISBN-13: 978-1-61124-081-8 (Electronic)
Cain Carpenter has it all—looks, money, a beautiful home, and a successful business. What he doesn’t have is someone to share it all with, someone he loves and who loves him in return.
In spite of the belief that if Cain kisses enough frogs he’ll eventually find the prince of his dreams, the search is proving far from simple. As owner and manager of The Peony, the town’s classiest restaurant, Cain doesn’t have much time for a social life. He’s tried all the usual avenues for meeting people, including a dating agency, and he’s about given up...
But then Cain accepts an invitation to a singles masquerade party and meets a masked man in an elaborate headdress of black feathers who sends his thoughts and senses reeling with excitement. The stranger invites Cain to dance, and from the instant they touch, Cain truly believes, at long last, that this is the special man he’s been waiting for.
A few minutes later, however, the man answers a phone call, mutters something about an emergency and disappears, leaving Cain in a complete panic. The rules of the masquerade include no removal of masks and no exchange of names. If you can’t somehow figure out the identity of the person who sparked your interest, you lose. And Cain doesn’t want to lose, but without the man’s name and no idea what he looks like, he feels hopeless. All he knows about “Black Feathers” is that he’s a little taller and heavier than himself, but that could describe half the town’s male population.
Will Cain be able to track down the alluring stranger in order to determine if they’re truly destined for a future?
...One of the guests, who was dressed as a pirate and standing right next to Cain, said, “I take it you’ve never been to one of these singles masquerades before tonight?”
Cain laughed. “I didn’t even know there were such things. I thought with a costume ball you’re supposed to try to figure out who the other people are, but at some point in the evening, everyone’s identity will be revealed. Is the not telling part something new?”
“No, I understand it’s the way these things first started. The whole point of a masquerade is to pose as something or someone you are not and this, in turn, creates the magical feeling of mystery and romance. In my opinion, any telling of names destroys the magic completely.”
“You’d rather be kept guessing?” Cain hazarded.
“Of course. And it’s almost certainly the reason why masquerade parties are gaining in popularity on the singles’ scene. It’s bad enough being footloose and fancy free, but attending those boring get-togethers where you sit around the host’s pool or living room and watch people hook up, then wonder if it’s just for tonight or forever, has definitely passed its sell-by date. These parties are a much better idea.”
“In what way? Say, you’d like to get to know someone better. It would be impossible if you don’t know their name.”
“Ah, but that’s where the mystery and romance comes in. You don’t know them, and they don’t know you, but think of all the fun you’ll have trying to figure out who the person was who caught your attention. Or perhaps it was you who caught theirs. Maybe you talked for a few moments, or even better, you danced together, but whatever happened, it was enough to set sparks flying or work up a little chemistry. You can even be a little outrageous if you wish. After all, who’s to know?”
“Oh right, thanks.” Cain hadn’t thought about the mystery angle; he’d been too concerned about opening his mouth and putting his foot in it. Now he realized it worked both ways. Both parties were at a disadvantage when it came to figuring out who said what to whom.
Just then, the band began to play another set. Cain felt someone touch his arm, and a voice said softly, “Would you care to dance?”
Something about the honey-on-velvet voice, which he thought might be a man’s but he wasn’t one hundred percent sure, caught Cain by surprise. It was rather like being touched without warning in a sensitive spot, and Cain’s body reacted accordingly.
He turned toward the speaker, someone a little taller and at least a few pounds heavier than himself, who wore an enormous headdress composed entirely of long black feathers. A gold half mask surrounded by a fringe of small black and white spotted feathers covered the eyes and forehead, while the lower half of the face was painted chalk white. A black velvet jacket and knee britches, white stockings and black, buckled shoes completed the outfit. The area between the chin and the collar of the jacket was swathed in purple chiffon patterned in silver.
“Well?” The voice pressed a little louder, confirming the speaker was a man.
At that precise moment, everything the other man had said about the mystery and romance of masquerade took over Cain’s imagination. “Yes, of course. Absolutely. I’d love to,” he replied before the stranger got the idea he wasn’t interested and moved on. “Sorry, you’ll have to excuse me,” he continued as the man took his hand and led him onto the floor, “but your headdress is quite amazing. How on earth do you manage to keep it in place?”
“It weighs less than a pound,” his partner replied, “so it’s really no problem. I barely remember I have it on.”
As they began to dance, he brought Cain just close enough so their bodies were touching from knee to chin in a hold that was light yet struck Cain as possessive. It was clear the man was a good dancer, and while there was nothing overtly sexual about his movements or the way he held Cain, there was something so sexy about the man himself it made Cain’s pulse race and sent his imagination into overdrive. He was having difficulty with his breathing. He was also highly aroused, and since his partner’s stiff cock was pressing hard against his thigh, he knew the reaction was mutual.
Cain had no idea if the anonymity afforded by the mask was responsible for his physical reaction, or if it was the result of the whole mystery-romance thing the other partygoer had explained. Whatever the reason, he was beginning to appreciate the appeal of a masquerade. It felt like the start of something exciting; quite what, however, he had no idea. Something he just knew would be both wonderful and different. Something he wished could last forever...

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Release Day!

When Charlie’s plane goes down in a remote Alaskan wilderness she knows she’s in big trouble. She didn’t have time to radio in her position. It looks like her decision to surprise her parents on their wedding anniversary wasn’t such a good idea. Now lost and in freezing temperatures, her chances of survival look bleak.

As Charlie heads out on foot, she faces a new danger when a white wolf appears. And right behind him is her salvation. A quiet mountain man with secrets, who takes her to his one-room cabin, where she finds herself stranded for the winter. To make matters worse, there’s an instant attraction between them they both try to resist.

Hard to do when she’s sleeping in his bed! Before long they give into a temptation stronger than their wills, and find survival, and the chance to love again, in each other’s arms.
buy link - http://www.toryrichards.com/bookshelf.html

excerpt -
Charlie knew it was early. It didn’t take her long to realize the soft clicking sound she’d heard had been the door closing below, telling her that Swanson had left. She burrowed deeper into the delicious warmth of the covers, not yet ready to wake completely. Enjoying the feel of Luke’s presence beside her and how safe he made her feel.

They’d spent the night against each other in spoon-like fashion, aware of the other even in sleep. Charlie had lost count of the times she’d roused to find his cock hard and pressing against her bottom. She’d held her breath, waiting, yet he’d only lain there, breathing deeply until he gained control again. Other than the first time he’d caressed her breast, he hadn’t touched her again.

She was just about to drift off again, wondering what it would take to make him lose control, when Luke’s hand moved over her breast in a gentle caress. Her nipple tingled with sensation and hardened instantly. Her sigh of surrender was rewarded with the forceful thrust of his hips. Before she could guess his intentions, Luke reached down and pulled the robe aside so that there was nothing between their hot, hungry flesh. Her body exploded with pleasure from the contact of her buttocks against his smooth, throbbing shaft. A steel rod encased in soft velvet.

Gone was her blissful sigh. The heat of Luke’s shaft produced a throaty groan that grew with intensity and echoed throughout the cabin. His cock was as hot as a poker, setting Charlie on fire from the inside out. The knowledge of where this morning would end caused her to tremble with desire. Years of abstinence came crashing down around her, making her painfully aware of what she wanted now more than anything. And it wasn’t just any man Charlie wanted, it was Luke.

Only Luke.

That knowledge caused her to curve more forcefully into him, reveling in his deep growl of satisfaction when he realized her surrender. He shuddered against her as if already in the throes of a climax, thrusting forcefully between her thighs. When Charlie felt the rounded head of his cock brush against her clit, she released a small cry and closed her eyes. She’d never felt anything half as heavenly and tried to part her legs enough to allow him total entry. Only Luke seemed to have other plans.

Charlie unexpectedly found herself flipped over so he could reach her breast with his searching mouth. She arched wildly, crying out in pleasure and offered her flesh eagerly to Luke’s mouth as he thoroughly loved one swollen breast before moving on to the other. The sound of her blissful satisfaction became a deep purr in her throat, signaling her pleasure. The whole time she twisted and arched beneath him, silently encouraging him to fuck her.

Damn, I want him.

She reveled in the feel of his roughened hands as they glided over her, impatiently brushing the robe aside when it got in his way. Luke’s mission became perfectly clear as he explored every curve and valley of Charlie’s writhing body. He soon followed his roaming hands with the heat of his open mouth. He feasted on her quivering flesh, quickly making his way down her body, never lingering too long in one spot. His kisses were like little brushes of fire against her sensitive skin and left her tingling and gasping for more. She turned wild.

As though following a map, Luke’s mouth found its way to the indented curve of her waist before exploring the roundness of her hip. He continued to the most private part of Charlie, kissing the soft curls between her legs and teasing her with a quick, deep stab of his tongue. She cried out then, her hips leaving the bed, and her body convulsed from the all too brief pleasure of his intimate act. Her hands clutched his shoulders in an effort to keep him there. Only he was far stronger than her, continuing to move over her body and loving it with his mouth and hands in an ardor that revealed he intended to discover her every secret.

Waves of ecstasy throbbed through her like a thousand tiny explosions. Her soft cries filled the cabin, mingling with Luke’s deeper, huskier groans. Their breathing was labored. Charlie’s hands touched his muscular body wherever she could, learning and memorizing the hard planes that made up the hard man.

She boldly traveled from his broad shoulders down the rippling muscles of his smooth back and over his tight buttocks, smoothing his pajama bottoms down as she went. She clenched her fingers into his taut flesh and provoked him to heights of passion that released her own.

She turned wild beneath him, wanting and needing to give pleasure as she was being pleasured. Hoping to heal the exposed wounds of their dispirited souls with a reawakening of new life and new memories. And something in the way Luke moved told Charlie he was striving for the same thing.


She shuddered, her impassioned plea revealed the raw emotions racing through her blood. He completed his erotic journey and lowered his weight over her twisting body, kissing her long and hard.

When the kiss ended Luke pulled back far enough to meet her eyes. His were glazed and churning with emotion, mirroring hers she was certain. Where their damp, naked flesh meshed a fire had ignited, moving swiftly and deeply through them until it was spiraling rapidly out of control. Charlie felt restraint slipping away, knew a moment of panic when it dawned on her that it would take very little effort to send her over the edge. The involuntary tremors of release were spiraling through her body. Warning her before long there would be no turning back.

It had been too long.

“Oh God, Luke, I’m going to—”

He pulled her beneath him and settled his weight upon her glistening, gyrating body. Charlie could feel his powerful, heavy erection against her, but he didn’t enter her right away. The wait nearly killed her and she arched in an attempt to force the issue. His low grumble sounded like an animal in the wild, taking his mate in an act of primitive domination.

“Tell me what you want.”

Luke’s hoarse demand fired the need in Charlie’s blood even higher. Her hands kneaded the flesh of his buttocks, forcing him ever closer to his prize. She could feel the rounded head of his cock lightly brush her throbbing clit. But she couldn’t overpower his strength to control the moment.

Why isn’t he fucking me? Doesn’t he want me as much as I want him?

“Luke, please!”

His cock throbbed in the hot, nesting place between her legs, as if waiting for an invitation to sink into the soft, wet folds. Charlie could actually feel her pussy lips swelling with desire. She couldn’t ever remember being so hot.

“I want to make certain you want this as much as I do, Charlie. I want to make sure you fully understand that if you give me any sign to continue there will be no turning back.” He mouthed the words against her aching breasts.

The sensation of his beard scraping her ultra sensitive nipples made the decision for her. As far as Charlie was concerned there was nothing to think about. She met the flames of desire simmering in Luke’s eyes.

“Can’t you tell?”

“I’m not in the mood for guessing games, lady.” His mouth trailed a path of fire up to Charlie’s throat. “I want the words. Clear and simple.”

She gasped, unable to respond and shuddered when his teeth tugged at her ear.

“Charlie?” The grit in his tone revealed his impatience.

“I want you, Luke.”

She couldn’t take any more. The sound of him sucking in his breath was audible in the room. His big body shuddered. Backing up her demand, Charlie closed her legs against his seeking shaft, lovingly capturing it between her silken thighs.

“Luke!” she demanded desperately. “Please fuck me.”

Where did he find the willpower to resist? Hadn’t she told him what he wanted to hear?

Charlie arched into his weight and parted her legs, moving her hips in wild abandon. They kissed as if it were their first and their last time, pulling deeply on each others tongues. She caught Luke’s bottom lip with her teeth and nipped at it seductively before letting him pull away.

His counter attack left her quivering. He moved down her body until he reached Charlie’s aching breasts, swirling his tongue around her sensitive nipples before taking them into his warm mouth. His strong hands traveled over her, learning the hollows of her body. She nearly exploded when his fingers glided over her clit, and tested her willingness.


Charlie’s nails clenched into the muscles of his arms in sexual frustration. The power of his physique flexed beneath her sensual attack, reminding Charlie how solid he was. Powerful yet in control.

Too controlled.

In frustration she sharpened her nails down his chest, raking over his nipples as she went. He attacked back. He pulled her knees up and thrust forward at the same time, smoothly gliding through the glistening hair guarding her pussy lips. Past the soft gateway into her welcoming body until he was all the way home, as though he belonged there. Reaching to the deepest core of her and beyond, to where her heart beat.

Charlie cried out in wild abandon. Her hands returned to his buttocks forcing him deeper still. Luke’s body shuddered uncontrollably, stiffening in an obvious attempt to hold off.

“Charlie, wait.”

It was too late. She was out of control. Her body jerked as the spasms of a powerful climax gripped her. She clenched her thighs around Luke as sweet ecstasy claimed her in the ultimate pleasure. Her convulsive movements proved too much for Luke and he thrust into her with a groan. His mouth locked onto hers as he lost control. He swallowed her cry of pleasure, gripping her by the hips as he finished the ride with her. Hard and fast, again and again, he thrust into her until one final time, succumbing to a powerful release.

It seemed an eternity before either one moved.

When their breathing returned to normal and their hearts stopped racing, Charlie welcomed the weight of Luke on her. When he moved, she sensed it was out of consideration for her and not because he wanted to. As he carefully rolled away he surprised her by pulling her with him. He kept her close to his side. Then, all without words, he reached for the quilt and pulled it over their cooling bodies as they drifted off into an exhausted slumber.

Tory Richards

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Brandi Rides Again!

Coming Soon from eXtasy Books and the wickedly wacky mind of Celine Chatillon...

What do you get when Star Wars meets Sherwood Forest? Mix in a little Pirates of the Caribbean, Fanny Hill and The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy and you get Brandi Whyne… And Her Incredibly Erotic Adventures with Robin Manhood and His Totally Sexed-Out Space Pirates. With a series title that long, you know it’s going to be filled with loads of laughs, tons of sci-fi fun and plenty of hot sex!

In Chapter Six, Kidnapped by Time Bandits, Brandi is sucked into an alternate dimension and forced to do a little sucking on some not-so-nice space pirates—including Robin Limpdick, the evil twin of her own lover Robin Manhood. After a good licking, she meets Captain Jacques Swallows and his right hand man Francois who put her to the test. Can Brandi convince the Time Bandits that the crew of the Pulsating Purple Parsnip can do more than just throw a great orgy?

Kidnapped by Time Bandits! is not quite yet available for sale at eXtasy Books, but you can catch up on her first five adventures at the links below:

Captured by Space Pirates!

Lashed at the Mast!

Bound for Adventure

Little John's Big Problem

The Search for Brandi's Crack

More info, excerpts and review blurbs at this link: http://www.cynthianna.com/brandi.html

Here's hoping you'll become a part of Brandi's fan club until then!

Steal this banner--put it up at your blog or web site. Help spread the word about Brandi Whyne's Incredibly Erotic Adventures! ;)

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I'm so excited to announce I have a new book out with Ellora's Cave! It's a paranormal romance called GHOST HUNTER, and it's got a hunky hero, a kick-ass heroine and a serial killing ghost that's scary as hell! Not to mention a smokin' hot cover!

I love when I come up with an idea for a book out of the blue, which is what happened with GHOST HUNTER. When I heard my local RWA chapter set up a lecture with a team of paranormal investigators, it got me thinking right away about writing a book about a ghost hunter. Because the chapter is far from where we live, though, we didn't actually go to the lecture. I was a little bummed about that, especially since they were giving out EMF detectors. On second thought, maybe it was better we didn't go. Ghosts freak me out, so having something that can detect them probably wouldn't be a good idea.

Enough about me, back to the story behind the story. While I knew the hero was a ghost hunter named Trace, I wasn't quite sure how the heroine fit into the story, or even who she was. So, my hubby and I played around with a few ideas at our local PF Chang's (we come up with a lot of story ideas there!) We both decided that having the heroine Cassidy need the hero's help because her house was haunted or something like that didn't seem original enough, so we made her a budding romance writer who tags along with the hero and his team to do some research. Like any good story, though, it had to have some conflict, which is why Trace and Cassidy completely rub each other the wrong way right from the beginning. Actually, he thinks he's a jerk. But don't worry, Cassidy discovers underneath that rough ghost hunter exterior, Trace is just the man she's been looking for. It doesn't hurt that he's hot!

Okay, so we had our hero and heroine. Now we needed a bad guy. That's where the ghost comes in. He's not your standard, everyday ghost, though. He's a serial killer who attacked Cassidy that comes back from the grrave to continue his string of grisly murders, and she's at the top of his list. To make things even more interesting, not only can he do all the regualar ghostly stuff like walk through walls and materialize out of thin air, he can also take solid form.

I'm not going to tell you any more than that, though. Don't want to give too much away, you know. I will add that my editor at Ellora's Cave told me she got so caught up in the story, she completely forgot she was reading a submission!

Now that you know the story behind the story, I think I'll tease you with an excerpt. Enjoy!


Almost getting murdered by a serial killer gives Cassidy Kincaide a new lease on life and convinces her to go ahead and tackle that ghost-hunter novel she's always wanted to write. So, she hooks up with a gorgeous paranormal investigator named Trace McCord to do some research.

Cassidy and Trace rub each other the wrong way right from the beginning, but they have to put aside their differences when the serial killer who attacked her comes back from the grave to continue his string of grisly murders, with her at the top of his list.

Trace has to keep Cassidy close to keep her safe, and as they try to stay one step ahead of the ghost while figuring out how to stop it, he and Cassidy end up in each other’s arms. While Trace has a whole list of reasons why he shouldn’t get involved with her, he finds himself falling in love with the beautiful blonde anyway. And even though Cassidy started out thinking he was a jerk, she learns that underneath the rough ghost hunter exterior, he’s just the man she’s always been looking for. Now, all they have to do, is live long enough to be together.


Trace was only a few miles from the address Robert had given him for Cassidy when his cell phone rang. At first he wasn’t going to answer it, but some sixth sense made him change his mind. Now he was glad he had.

He was about to disconnect the call when he heard a muffled scream on the other end of the line. It was quickly followed by a loud clatter, then nothing.


No answer.

Trace felt his chest tighten. Swearing under his breath, he shoved his cell phone in the pocket of his jeans and floored the pedal on the Hummer, running a red light to get through the intersection. The other drivers honked their horns as they squealed to a stop, but he ignored them. There was no way he was going to let Cassidy die.

Five minutes later, he slid into the parking lot outside her apartment, running over an ornamental fence and a flower bed to come to a screeching halt a few feet from the front door. Jumping out of the Hummer, he ran around to the back and grabbed his duffel bag full of gear. Throwing it over his shoulder, he raced up the steps and charged through the door into the building, scaring the hell out of two women carrying laundry baskets.

“Where the hell are the stairs?” he demanded, not wanting to waste time with the elevator.

The women timidly pointed around the corner.

Trace didn’t thank them as he ran in that direction. He hit the steps hard, taking them hree at a time. Once on the fourth floor, he ran down the hall, checking the room numbers on he doors. When he came to the right one, he didn’t even bother to slow down. Instead, he icked the door in as hard as he could, reaching into his bag for his shotgun as the frame plintered and the door flew open.

He looked left and right as he entered the apartment, but there was no sign of Cassidy or el Vecchio. Trace’s blood ran cold at the scene that met his eyes. The living room looked s if a cyclone hit it. The couch and throw pillows were sliced to shreds, stuffing still floating hrough the air. The coffee table was lying on its side, as were the two end tables, and the amps that had been on them were smashed to pieces along with practically everything ele in the place. Even the walls had been slashed.

“Cassidy?” Trace called.

“In here.”

Trace followed the sound of her voice until he came to the kitchen. Cassidy was standing in the center of the room inside a wobbly drawn circle of salt, ready to throw a handful of something in his face. She sagged with relief at the sight of him, letting the stuff in her hand trickle out onto the floor. That was when he realized she was holding a big container of oregano.

“Is he gone?” she whispered.

Trace nodded. “Yeah, he’s gone. But I’m getting you the hell out of here anyway.”

He didn’t wait for an answer, but simply slung the shotgun over his shoulder by the strap, then walked into the kitchen and swung Cassidy up in his arms.

She put one of her own around his neck. “Is it safe for me to leave the circle?”

“Yes. I’ll keep you safe. Trust me.”

Apparently she must have believed him because she didn’t resist. She cuddled the container of oregano close to her body and leaned against his chest.

He frowned. “Cassidy, you did great with the salt circle. It saved your life without a doubt. But what are you doing with the oregano?”

She looked up at him with big, blue eyes. “Isn’t it what you used to get rid of ghosts?”

His mouth twitched. “That’s sage and garlic. You can ditch the spaghetti spice.”

“Oh,” was all she said. Resting her head on his shoulder, she let the container of oregano tumble to the floor, then put that arm around his neck, too.

Giving the place one more look to make sure Del Vecchio hadn’t come back, Trace carried her out of the apartment and right passed the alarmed neighbors who had come out into the hallway to see what the ruckus was all about. Trace imagined they got their money’s worth seeing a big guy with a shotgun and a duffel bag slung over his shoulder carrying a beautiful half-naked woman in his arms. He abruptly realized he probably should have taken a few minutes to let Cassidy grab some clothes. But then the lights in the hallway flickered and he decided he could get her clothes later. They were getting the hell out of there.

“Is she being kidnapped?” one elderly woman asked another in a low voice as he and Cassidy passed them.

“If she is,” said the other old woman, “then I want to want to be kidnapped next.”

Any other time, Trace would have laughed, but right now all he wanted to do was get Cassidy someplace safe. Fortunately, he knew exactly where to take her.

Watch the Trailer Here!

Get your copy of GHOST HUNTER at Ellora's Cave!


"Stories so hot, they'll make your cheeks blush!"

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SNATCHED - action - Sci-fi romance novel

Snatched from a post-apocalyptic battlefield by galactic traders, Zania is sold to a clandestine ring of fighting Amazons on a planet lush with green jungles and teeming with deadly felines. She resents the gorgeous and overzealous Viking champion, Svend, who saves her life but too easily accepts his slavery. Adulated by a woman who claims to know her, hated by the jealous Amazon queen who fancies Svend, Zania seeks escape... But Svend knows the price of rebellion. And on this seemingly peaceful planet, ruled and defended by machines, nothing is what it seems... Among the rumbles of a volcano threatening to explode, insurrection is brewing, and no one is safe...
Find it today at ARe (All Romance eBooks) HERE

Find it tomorrow for your kindle at amazon.com HERE
Find it tomorrow at Smashwords HERE
and in a few days at B&N, Borders, Kobo, and all ebook retail outlets.
EXCERPT (Kidnapped girl meets gorgeous Viking)
"All sexual relations have been abolished in these parts," the synthetic voice volunteered.
"Abolished?" Zania stifled a nervous chuckle as she kept walking. "It doesn’t make much sense."

"The tendencies that bring sexual passions, or passions of any kind, also breed violence, and all violence has been bred out of the citizens of this Earth. It is the price they pay for lasting peace and safety."

The concept sounded so foreign, Zania started to suspect she had wandered into delirium. She must have lost her mind. "Did you say Earth?"

"That’s what the natives call their planet."

The natives? So her captors were from some other place? From space? Zania slowed down but remembered she had to keep walking in order to get answers.

"This Earth is different from yours. It survived. Your native planet is long gone."

"Gone?" How could a planet be gone? "What do you mean?"

"Gone as in destroyed, reduced to interstellar dust, volatilized."

Zania couldn’t accept that. The idea that Earth as she knew it was no more bothered her beyond belief. "When did that happen? How long have I been unconscious?"

"Your battle happened one thousand, three hundred and thirty one Earth years ago," the voice stated with confidence.

"What?" Zania’s legs turned to mush. Something in her gut told her it was the truth. Her father, her brothers, her cheating boyfriend, all dead... They never found her body, declared her MIA. "How is that possible?"

"You were selected and preserved for our specific purpose."

"What purpose?" Zania couldn’t stand not being in control of her own destiny. "Who made that decision for me?"

"We did."

That We again. The corridor ended into a sharp turn. The sound of many voices filtered into the hallway. "What’s this place?"

"The time has come to perform your duty."

Before Zania could protest, she emerged into a brightly lit arena, with people in the bleachers, cheering and yelling her name. They all wore gray robes and hid their faces under a hood, like ghosts. "Why do they all wear gray?"

"Color is not allowed on their Earth. Color breeds passions."

"But I wear blue, and the mat is red."

"This is clandestine entertainment We provide for them. They hide their faces for fear of being recognized."

Stepping on the soft red mat, Zania raised her gaze to the highest levels of the arena and noticed a gigantic projection of herself on the ceiling.

The deep blue veils suited her well, enhancing her dazzling blue eyes and apricot complexion, and revealing much of her body. With the long flowing hair and the eye makeup of an Egyptian queen, Zania hardly recognized herself. She looked more beautiful than she remembered. Of course, she’d never been the pampering type.

The cheering suddenly stopped and Zania realized she no longer stood alone on the mat of the arena. There, in the bright light, walked a tall muscular man, young, his long blond hair framing a tan face with icy gray eyes... The visage of Adonis on Hercules’ body.

Her gaze roamed over the regular lines of his jaw, the full, sensual lips, dimpled chin, down the expanse of his hairless pectorals, and stopped on the leather cod piece embossed with Tor’s hammer. That’s all he wore.

So, he was a Viking. Zania could easily imagine him swinging a sword or a battle axe like his ancestors. He certainly had the biceps for it. His bare thighs bulged with muscles, yet his face held an almost feminine beauty. She couldn’t help a shiver of appreciation for this perfect male specimen.

"Are you Adonis himself?" If he were, Zania would have to prostrate herself.

"No, Zania. My name is Svend." His amused smile told her he enjoyed her surprise. "Who is Adonis?"

"Never mind." How could he not know the gods of the Pantheon?

The synthetic female voice interrupted her thoughts. "This is the mate We selected for you."

"Mate?" Zania realized only she could hear the voice as Svend didn’t react to the outrageous comment.

"You must join with him here, now, for the pleasure of our illustrious clients." The lack of emotion clashed with the loaded words. "In exchange, you will live another day."

"You don’t say." Mating was out of the question.

"Think before you decide. If you delight the crowd, you may be auctioned off to a prosperous patron, or even earn your freedom."

Freedom... That had been Zania’s battle cry. "This is blackmail!" As a soldier, she had no tolerance for such practices. She didn’t risk her life in combat to end up as an unwilling porn star. "I’m not mating with this..." She lacked the words. Viking prince? Golden god?

Svend smiled and walked to her with debonair confidence. "Shall we give them a good show? How long has it been since you were fully satisfied?" The deep voice caressed and enveloped her.

How long indeed! "Don’t touch me!" How dare this stranger think she’d go along with his parody of seduction. "I can only have sex with a man I love." The man she’d loved had cheated on her while she fought on the front. Of course, she’d had casual sex before, and sacred sex at the temple as well, but she wanted to make a point.

Find out more about all of Vijaya's novels at:

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December Promise by KC Kendricks

December Promise
#3 Best Seller @ Amber Allure, Feb.2011
Contemporary gay romance
available now at

Paul Macy moved heaven and earth to get a reluctant Lee Kendall for his college roommate. Giving up his free-and-easy lifestyle for the sexy new guy on campus had been the easiest decision Paul had ever made. Walking away from Lee, however, had been the hardest.

Now, years later, Lee Kendall’s made it to the top of his field by working hard, and playing harder in the right circles. Yet he has also come to realize that success is empty when you have no one with whom to celebrate it. But as luck would have it, an invitation to visit his alma mater brings Lee face-to-face with his first lover, and a chance for the reconciliation he never thought possible.

The sparks fly when Paul and Lee reunite, fulfilling long-denied dreams for both men. But passion isn’t a pledge, and it takes more than promises made in the dark to forge a shared future between two lonely hearts...

INTRO: (from Lee's POV)

Did he seek closure, or renewal?

"Why don’t we ask the concierge to suggest a place? I drove in, so we can take my car and go the long way around. Maybe drive up to the overlook, and check out what’s new in the view.”

Paul tapped his coffee cup to Lee’s. “I like that idea.”

Lee downed the dregs of the lukewarm liquid in his cup. Damn, contact with foam containers made coffee taste nasty. His memory came alive with recollections of how a younger Paul’s skin tasted. Would it have the same musky sweetness now? He had to get his mind off sex before he got hard.

It was too late to recall the thought. Goose bumps prickled over his thighs and belly. His cock pulsed, lengthened. He hoped Paul wouldn’t notice, but he knew better.

Paul uncurled his long frame to gracefully roll to his feet in a display of controlled strength. He held out his hand to Lee.

Lee didn’t hesitate to reach out and wrap his fingers around his ex-lover’s. Paul pulled him to his feet. Standing so close to him, face-to-face inside the aura of heat and scent, the buried sorrow of all the lost years vanished. His inaction had created the worst mistake of his life – he’d allowed Paul to walk away.

Just two short weeks ago he’d counseled a friend to follow his heart. Now he had the chance to follow his, if he were brave enough.

His chin lifted as he gazed into Paul’s blue eyes. There were so many things he wanted to say, but only one seemed relevant.

“I’ve missed you, Paul.”

EXCERPT: (from Paul's POV)

Quick as lightning, Paul wrapped his arms around Lee. Desire, swift and sweet, swept through him, jumbling his memories, as Lee’s mouth moved over his. His lips opened, and Lee’s tongue licked into his as he backed Paul against the car. His cock responded, swelling rapidly as a delicious urgency seized him. He inhaled sharply, and Lee’s spicy scent exploded in his memory, refreshed, better now for holding him again. Paul stroked his lover’s back, his hands going down to cup Lee’s firm ass. Lee pressed closer and flexed his pelvis to his. Paul gripped tighter, needing to feel every inch of the steel rod rubbing against his.

This was nuts. They couldn’t just pick up where they’d left off. Could they?
Nothing had changed. They lived on separate coasts. They’d made separate lives. It should be easy to stop kissing him and explain why this was a bad idea, and friendship was the best they should hope for. He spun Lee around and slammed him flat to the car door.

Paul shivered as Lee yanked his shirttail out of his jeans, his hot palms sliding across the planes of his chest. Paul made a sound of encouragement as Lee’s finger teased his left nipple. Trust Lee to remember how he loved to have his nips touched. He thrust his tongue into Lee’s mouth. Lee pushed against him, breaking off the heated kiss.

“Hey, easy. We need to cool down a bit.”

Paul grabbed at him, but Lee gently swatted his hands away. “I mean it, Paul.”

Behind him, people spoke. A car engine started. He shivered as the testosterone haze cleared. Lee smiled crookedly at him.

“Best we not get tossed onto the street for lewd and obscene behavior.”
He was right. Paul took a deep breath and tried to ignore the tightness in his balls. Thank heavens Lee had his wits about him. “So you think me going to my knees in the parking garage would be a bit much?”

Lee chuckled. “Uh-huh. I think the state still has laws against it.”

“I’ll do it, you know.”

“And I’ll let you, you know.”

Paul’s heart did a little dance in his chest. His stomach fluttered, swirling cold, then flaring red-hot. “Don’t say that if you don’t meant it, Lee.”

“I do mean it. Now why don’t we find some food, and think about how big a mistake we’re about to make?”

“Are you going to smirk at me?”

Dark brows knit together, Lee tilted his head. “Why would I…?”

His voice tailed off as Paul dipped a hand down the front of his jeans and settled his genitals to a more comfortable position before he tucked his shirttail in. Amusement sparkled in his eyes, turning them bright silver in the overhead lighting. He shrugged, and it was Paul’s turn to laugh as Lee made a like adjustment. Paul risked giving Lee another quick kiss before opening the car door.

“I’ll behave now.”

Lee patted his ass on the way to the other side of the car. “Tell me another one, Racy Macy.”

“Oh, geez.” Paul dropped into the passenger seat and fastened the seat belt. “I always hated it when you called me that.” Lee closed his door and walked around to the driver’s side and got it.

“No you didn’t hate it.” Lee stuck the key in the ignition and turned the switch. “You liked it, runner-boy.”

He had, when Lee called him that. When other guys used it, the underlying affection wasn’t there. Paul remained silent as Lee skillfully maneuvered the car out of the parking garage and merged with the street traffic.

“We’ve never been in a car alone together before.”

“We were on the bus one night, just the two of us.” Lee changed lanes. “I’m starving. I need more than pizza. I saw one of those chain steak houses on the way into town. Are you good with that?”

“The bus doesn’t count because of the driver, and ‘yes’ on the restaurant.”

Lord, the night on the bus. How long had it been since he’d thought about that ride? The bus driver knew there was hanky-panky going on in the last row, and cut the interior lights. Paul had kept telling Lee to stop, that the lights could come back on at any second. Lee refused, and stroked him until he almost came, then refused to finish him off until they were locked in their dorm room.

The driver gave them a stern warning as they disembarked, but Paul never shook the impression they’d amused the fellow. He squirmed in his seat as his dick rose again, and he cast a surreptitious glance at Lee.

Great. The man knew what was going on in his pants...

ISBN 978-1-61124-062-7
Contemporary gay romance
available now at

This title is also available as part of the WHERE THE HEART IS, a five book PAX collection from Amber Allure: http://www.amberquill.com/AmberAllure/AP_WhereTheHeart.html

KC Kendricks
Visit my website at: http://www.kckendricks.com
Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/kckendricks
Join my mailing list at: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/betweenthekeys
Read my personal blog: http://www.kckendricks.blogspot.com
Check out the MySpace page: http://www.myspace.com/kckendricks

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New Release! FUTURE HISTORIES: Transgender Sci-Fi Erotica

Future Histories: Transgender Sci-Fi Erotica is a compilation of tales from three nearby futures. In “ToyGirls of the Personal Genome,” we visit a society in which transsexuals are admired, if objectified, while intersex individuals are cast off as third-class citizens. The world of “The Travesties” is one in which gender has become fluid for some, but the ability to shift from male to female and back again is denounced and feared by the medical establishment. Finally, “They Called Me Hijra” takes the reader to India of the future, where the “hijra,” India’s once-revered third gender, have been all but whitewashed out of existence. The remaining hijra hide in seclusion, known only to those who visit them in the night.

Future Histories: Transgendered Sci-Fi Erotica

By: Giselle Renarde
Available from All Romance ebooks| Other books by Giselle Renarde
Published By: Excessica Publishing
Published: Mar 04, 2011
ISBN # 9781609824617
Word Count: 16,400
Heat Index

In the back pages of Fuck Weekly, Roisin counted fifty-seven photos of hot Asian escorts “in your area,” “available 24/7,” “satisfaction guaranteed.” Fifty-seven coy schoolgirl types posing with pigtails in their long black hair and teddy bears between their little tits. Roisin squirmed in her wet panties. What would they think of her if she called up? Some dry old wannabe dyke? She gazed at her phone’s face like it held the answers to all life’s mysteries. Maybe they’d think she had a guy watching from the closet. Did other women visit prostitutes? Maybe the girls in Fuck Weekly got requests like hers all the time.

Sitting on her living room floor, Roisin contemplated the photo of a bashful-looking girl called Alice—BBBJ? What the hell did that mean?–-when another picture caught her eye. Neo. She had crimson-black hair and a sneaky smile. “Anti-establishment artist”—exactly the type of girl she’d have gone after in her University days…if she had the nerve to go for any girl back then. Nineteen years and two straight marriages later, she didn’t even have the balls to ask a guy out, let alone approach a living, breathing female.

There was a catch, of course. There’s always a catch. Above Neo’s picture, in cold black typeface, hung the word, “ToyGirl.” Not what Roisin expected to be drawn to. Although, twenty years ago she’d never have anticipated requiring a prostitute’s services. Granted, back then the first of the genetically engineered ToyGirls wouldn’t have been more than ten years old. Aside from their creator, nobody knew they existed. Of course, it was a big controversy when it first came out that genetically male children were bred from scratch only to be pumped full of female hormones. When governments cracked down sex trafficking, science took over. The ToyGirls were like Geishas, in a sense. They were bred to a purpose. They fulfilled a need. Was that so wrong?

Roisin felt the conflict swaying her left and right. Neo was ten times more beautiful than any of those other women. And just think about that body: lovely soft features, blood-red lips, luscious tits, and a fully functional eight-inch cock. The ad specified. More importantly, Neo’s blurb said, “I specialize in first-timers.” She probably meant men who’d never been with a ToyGirl, but Roisin took it as a good sign nonetheless. She placed the call.

Giselle Renarde
Canada just got hotter!

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