Heat Rating: 2
Publisher: Breathless Press
Formats Available In: All eBook formats
Word Count: 5,259
Twelve star signs, four friends, one extraordinary year. With Foreplay, enjoy a free taste of Izzy on her journey of sexual discovery through the Zodiac.
Twelve star signs, four friends, one extraordinary year. Izzy Morgan is a girl on a mission. When her friend Jessica reveals a remarkable talent for identifying men’s star signs purely from their sexual performance, an intrigued Izzy takes up an exhilarating challenge. With Foreplay, you can enjoy a free taste of Izzy as she begins her journey of sexual discovery through the Zodiac.
As she lay in the tub that evening, relishing the golden candlelight and warm vanilla scent from the bubbles, Izzy turned over the newfound information in her mind. She was fascinated by the notion that she could enjoy a man so much more by knowing which buttons to push—predetermined buttons based on his star sign. She had never had much luck with men, but equipped with Jessica’s astrological handbook for seduction, might she not learn to discover the real pleasures of romance?
Closing her eyes, she let her hand drift lazily through the water to her mound and teased the wet, dark hair gently with her fingers. She felt the familiar tingle in her skin as she woke the sleeping creature deep inside, and she arched her back involuntarily as the first wave of pleasure lurched through her. Opening her legs a little wider, she then slipped a finger into the crevice, moist with bubble bath and anticipation, and began to play.
Behind her closed eyes she watched a parade of male models, each one naked but for a fig leaf covering his modesty, engraved with his star sign. Starting with Aries, she made the men line up in front of her in her head, then gazed appreciatively as one by one they shed their leaves to reveal the astrological promise beneath. She got as far as Cancer, the fourth sign, before she came, her clitoris convulsing deliciously under the pressure of her finger.
Could it be genuine? she wondered as she allowed the warmth of the water to bring her round from her daydream. Was there anything more than sheer hokum to the concept of compatibility based on astrology? And if there was, what did it mean for her in her continuing search for the perfect partner, who had so far proved dramatically elusive?
About The Author:
When Tammy Valentine settles down to write one of her stories, she likes to get herself in the mood. She begins with a stroll in the garden, cutting some fresh roses for her writing desk, then lights some beautiful scented candles, pours a nice chilled glass of chardonnay, and lets her imagination run wild. She loves allowing readers into her secret world, and you can find out more about her at her website.
*We have several copies avaliable to review, please email us if you would like to review*
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THE DAMNED BY L.B. SHIRE
Travel worn, and weary, Shane Gregor rides into Hell’s Hollow for a drink and answers. On the run for a crime he didn’t commit his days are numbered unless he can find proof. What he discovers instead is a green eyed enchantress and a sheriff who’s out for blood. When the law catches up to him, can he put his hopes in a woman he’s only just met?
A widow who has fallen on hard times, Josie Talbert became a soiled dove for the sake of survival. Her life changes in the course of a night, when a dark and dangerous cowboy steps through the doors of the Dead Horse Saloon, a death sentence looming over his head. Can his words of innocence be trusted? Can a lone woman change the course of fate?
Tension gnawed at Shane’s soul. The door to the holding cell slammed shut behind him. This must be what a caged animal feels like. He glanced around the room. All ready the walls were moving in on him.
“I’ll talk with you later, Gregor,” the sheriff told him before leaving him alone with only his thoughts in the darkness. Shane didn’t respond, but listened in silence while the sheriff’s boots clicked across the wooden floor. With a heavy sigh he laid on the cot. He knew he was in a heap of trouble.
Shane needed to convince the sheriff of his innocence or he’d be a dead man by the end of the week, so they’d told him. He couldn’t let Mort win so easily. The man had managed to ruin his life in one fail swoop and at present it didn’t look like there was a damn thing he could do about it.
The night dragged on in insufferable silence. His thoughts flitted to earlier in the evening. When he had entered the saloon—when he’d first laid eyes on Josie… His mind wandered as he recalled how her curls bounced about her shoulders when she moved, and those eyes—she was a brazen one. Her hands on his skin when she washed him—stop, his mind screamed. The memories were pure torture.
Josie, he had to admit, intrigued him. He hadn’t given any woman a second thought for some time. He shook his head to clear it off the woman. It would do him no good to dream of her, he was a dead man.
Shane wondered if morning would ever come. The cell had no windows to let him know the time of day. But when the sheriff came through the front door, a hot cup of coffee in his pudgy hand, he knew he’d survived.
“I’ve sent word to the judge up in the next county. Said he should be here by the end of the week. Then there’ll be one less lousy gunfighter roaming the territory.”
“Will I have a chance to plead my case?” Shane asked. He gripped the bars of the cell until his fingers turned white. He gathered his answer by the unsympathetic smile on the sheriff’s lips.
“No trial is needed, son.” The man snorted, his chubby chin wiggling. “They start construction on the gallows today.” The sheriff took a sip of his coffee and stared at him with a look of contempt over the rim of his cup.
“The judge coming out here is to make it all official. He’ll sign the documents and so forth,” he said, matter of fact.
Shane stepped back from the bars. So it was over for him.
“So this is how it ends,” he murmured under his breath. He would need to send word to his brother and let him know what had happened to his sorry ass. Without another word he returned to the cot placed in the corner of the cell and sat down.
He rubbed his temples, wariness of the situation made his head throb.
“I’ll get you a bite to eat after a bit,” the sheriff called over his shoulder. “I’ve got stacks of paperwork to sift through on my desk first.” His voice echoed down the empty hall.
No longer hungry, Shane laid his head in his hands. A sense of despair that he couldn’t shake off overwhelmed him. Giving into his fatigue, he lay back on the cot and closed his eyes. It would be a long week.
WISH ME NOTHING BY HAVAN Fellows
Ar and Vaughn have a great relationship. When Vaughn makes a simple slip of the tongue, Ar’s life is put in jeopardy. Whatever you do, don’t say ”I wish”.
Ever hear the old saying “Be careful what you wish for”?
What happens if you find out that the Djin are not just fairy tales? That could be bad. Now, what happens if you find out that your boyfriend of a year and a half is a Djin? That could be worse.
In one fateful night, Vaughn Boggs’s world is turned inside out. Not only does he find out his boyfriend, Ar, is keeping a life-shattering secret from him, but when other Djin threaten Ar’s life Vaughn has to work with Shan, Ar’s lecherous brother, to find a way for them all to survive so they can see the next sunrise.
Vaughn isn’t sure a human can take on the magicks of the Djin, and he definitely isn’t sure he can trust Shan…but for Ar he’s willing to wish that both are possible.
“Release. Him. Now.”
Vaughn’s heart and breath froze. He shifted his gaze from those blue talons and slowly turned toward his lover. He had never heard such an implacably menacing sound come from Ar before. He widened his eyes at the sight before him. The Ar that he knew and loved no longer stood on this beach; in his place a monster towered, a taller, wider, thicker and darker than his boyfriend monster. His skin didn’t have the golden glow caused by the sun anymore. It appeared dense, like the tough hide of an animal, a deep blue/brown mixture. His eyes swirled the elements of fire and ice combined. His teeth jutted out, sharp, jagged and just slightly protruding over his thick blue lips. Long dreadlocks, a darker version of his blue skin, now replaced the beautiful, soft, ash brown hair that Vaughn loved running his fingers through and tugging on. His hands curled and uncurled with long pointed blue talons just like the ones causing the throbbing in Vaughn’s arm.
A deep rumbling laugh vibrated through him. Almost too afraid to move, Vaughn somehow got his neck to obey his commands and swung his gaze to the man who held him. The stranger no longer possessed the muscle-bound body he did mere moments ago. He too had magnified in all ways possible, his skin a slightly lighter hue than Ar’s.
“If you insist, traitor.” He growled right before throwing Vaughn easily two dozen feet behind him.
The wind whooshed out of Vaughn as his back collided with the hard-packed sand, yet he still attempted to scramble to his feet. The fear coursing through his system worked better than any drug on or off the market; it helped him get past the inability to fill his lungs with air problem. He managed to roll over onto his hands and knees, and then glanced up to where he’d been standing. Those two huge things faced off against each other. Oh my God…it wasn’t his imagination or some bad trip from his teenage years coming back to haunt him.
“If you ever touch him again I will take your head as a trophy.” That came from the one that used to be Ar.
The other one shrugged, apparently not nervous about the threat. “You will try. But we both know that you are not worthy of a fight with me. When I’m done with you I will find out what is so interesting about that human that would make you sentence yourself to death.”
“Get up and get your ass into the house now. Don’t look back. Don’t stop. Now go!”
Vaughn fell back on his ass when the voice floated through his mind. What the fuck?Ar’s voice, without a doubt. But in his head? He finally managed to get his feet beneath him, wincing with pain. Stepping backward toward the house, he kept an eye on the two blue men.
“Take one more move away from me, human, and I will have your heart in my hand before your body hits the sand.”
Not Ar. Vaughn stopped. Neither of them actually made eye contact with him, but both their attentions obviously focused on him.
“He’s bluffing. Run now, damn it! ”
“How the hell do I know he’s bluffing!” Vaughn yelled at the voice in his head, or Ar, or both maybe?
“Ar, are you conversing with the human telepathically? Interesting, indeed. Look at your lover, human. This man you lie with, allow to enter your body, isn’t a man. Can you trust he serves your best interest? He recognizes his path to die tonight. He will do anything to save his pathetic existence. Listen to me. I can assure you, I only desire to bring this traitor to justice for his crimes. You may leave as soon as I have your memories stored safely. Fight me on this and your demise is imminent.”
Vaughn studied Ar again, who didn’t take his gaze off the stranger. “I’m still Ar, the man you’ve loved for over a year. Don’t talk… Please Vaughn, just trust me on this. I will keep him from hurting you but you have to help me. He wants you to stay with two monsters, I want you to run. You weigh it out.”
With logic like that what could Vaughn do? He spun in the sand and hauled his ass as fast as his legs could take him toward Ar’s beach house.
A huge growl erupted behind him followed by a loud crashing noise. A hand grazed his ankle, causing him to fall forward and scream. He face-planted in the sand and flipped over quickly in time to witness Ar dragging the other one away by his legs.
He watched as Ar spun in a circle holding the monster in his hands, spinning faster and faster, raising the monster higher until he finally released him. The creature sailed through the night sky, finally splash-landing hundreds of feet out in the ocean.
Vaughn slumped down in short-lived relief until he glanced up to Ar stomping towards him.
“When I fucking tell you to run you do it! Now come on, we have to get to the house.”
THE ACCIDENT BY LEE BRAZIL
Pulling over to help at the scene of an emergency was the right thing for Dr. Madison Cahil to do.
But if emergency services didn’t arrive quickly, he would miss celebrating his anniversary at a swanky restaurant with his lover, Shane. He’d already disappointed the man he loved; now the whole night would be ruined. Not that Shane would make a scene. He’d smile sweetly and declare that it was fine. Madison hated that word. Fine never meant fine when Shane said it. Fine meant fuck off, asshole.
His string of bad luck since leaving the hospital just wasn’t quitting. He couldn’t believe he’d be the one to have to tell Shane his brother and niece had been involved in an accident, on their anniversary no less.
“I’m a doctor at New Hope. The officer up there sent me down to take a look, see if I could help.” A tiny liberty with the truth. But… He stretched up on his toes to peer through the lightly tinted rear window. No child in the car, thank God.
The driver’s window was shattered. Using his jacketed elbow he brushed aside broken glass and leaned into the vehicle. This time the cop didn’t bother trying to block him, though he still grumbled a bit. Fuck again. The victim was medium height and build, longish blond hair…Caucasian. Just like Hugh. The interior of the car reeked of blood and hot engine oil.
“Emergency services are on the way. Not sure what you can do to help.”
Carefully, Madison slid his hand to the neck of the victim. Pulse seemed fairly strong. The sirens of the approaching ambulance were a relief though. He could get out of here and on his way if they showed up, even if he and Shane ended up spending the evening at the emergency room with Hugh instead of at a romantic dinner.
The driver moaned and stirred.
“He’s coming around!” Madison called to the policeman. “Hey, sir, can you hear me?” He spoke softly to the injured man, leaning closer to see if he could decipher any response.
The man shifted in his seat and leaned back, turning his head to meet Madison’s gaze. Madison’s heart stilled and panic rushed in.
The driver wasn’t Hugh. It was Shane. No doubt about it. A huge gash on his forehead bled freely; pain fogged his blue eyes. “Oh, baby. Shane? Honey, what happened? Shane…” His training deserted him, and tears gathered in the corners of his eyes before trickling down his cheeks in warm trails. What to do? He wanted to hold Shane, to talk to him, to chastise him for not wearing the god damn seat belt.
“Madison.” Shane breathed out in a confused drawl.
“I’m here, baby.”
“Sonny.” Good, that was a good sign. Shane recognized him. Madison reached out with a trembling hand to push Shane’s golden blond hair, darkened with blood, off his forehead, revealing more of the wound.
MERRY CHRISTMAS SHELTON BY DIANNE HARTSOCK
Can Shelton and Nevil overcome the obstacles of a blizzard, a baby, and one hot redhead and find their way to a merry Christmas?
Shelton and Nevil have rented a cozy cabin in the mountains in which to spend the Christmas holiday. Tree is lit. Presents sparkle. Shelton anticipates a very merry Christmas indeed. But then a blizzard springs up, landing a sexy redhead on their doorstep looking like trouble in a pretty package.
Tommy brings a message for Nevil, but when he first hits on Shelton in the shower, then offers to drive Nevil to his sister’s side while she has her baby, Shelton begins to wonder just how this mixed up Christmas is going to end.
Shelton woke from a sound sleep, disoriented by a pounding on the door. He untangled from Nevil and sat up, heart racing. A glance at the clock showed it was barely three o’clock in the morning. What the hell? The pounding resumed and he scrambled to his feet, taking a second to slip on sweat pants before unlocking the door. The wind had died down and Shelton blinked at the snow piled up against the cabin walls. A slight figure huddled on the step, illuminated by the porch light, and without hesitation Shelton drew him into the warmth of the room, closing the door on the bitter night.
Shelton jumped a little at Nevil’s voice and blinked as the light went on overhead. There was a gasp from the bundle under his hand and he searched the pale face the young man raised. The pretty blue eyes weren’t looking at him and he followed his gaze to where his lover stood in all his naked splendor. Nevil scowled at their interest and pulled on the cotton pajama bottoms he’d picked up.
Shelton gave the boy a slight shake, knocking snow off his jacket and cap. “God, you’re soaked through! You need to get out of those clothes. Nevil, can you stir up the fire?”
As if knowing his danger, the young man stripped off his coat and sopping shirt while Shelton unlaced his boots and carefully slipped them off, leaving the socks for now. Ski pants and under armor were lowered and the young man leaned a hand on Shelton’s shoulder as he stepped out of them. Shelton glanced up and found himself on eye level with a pair of dark boxers that did little to cover the treasures beneath. His gaze swept up a tight stomach and muscular chest and clashed with laughing eyes.Trouble!
He cleared his throat. “Come to the fire and I’ll check for frostbite.”
The young man followed him, lifting the cap off a shock of copper hair. He sat on the quilts and Nevil draped one over his shoulders while Shelton knelt beside him. “Hands first,” he said and slid the wet gloves by careful inches off his hands. The skin felt cold and white, but the fingertips weren’t blue. “Can you move them?”
He looked up when the young man didn’t answer and met his puzzled gaze. “You’re really concerned, aren’t you?”
The man sounded slightly amused and Shelton felt the blush in his cheeks as he answered, “Yes. I saw a boy with frostbite last winter, in Colorado. It was…painful to witness. Let’s check those toes.”
He removed the damp socks with the same care as the gloves, and sighed in relief when the boy wiggled each toe. Nevil snorted from where he leaned against the mantle watching the proceedings. “Now that we know nothing is going to fall off, can you tell us what the hell you’re doing here?”
“Tera Shaw left a message for you at the lodge.” He smirked when Nevil straightened, tense. “I volunteered to bring it. She says she’s fine, but that they’re admitting her to the hospital in the morning. She’d like you to be there as soon as you can.”
“I’ll go immediately.”
“No, sir. The snow’s not too bad at the lodge, but worse up here. We’ll have to wait for the snowplow to get your car out.”
Nevil paced the room, cursing under his breath. Shelton heard the young man’s breath quicken as he watched the lithe movements of the sleek body, and frowned. “What’s your name?” he asked as a distraction. “Tommy.”
Of course it was. A cute name for a pretty face and sexy, youthful body.Damn.
“Well, Tommy, thanks for risking your neck for us. Why don’t you get some sleep here by the fire?” Shelton climbed stiffly to his feet and went to Nevil’s side. “Come to bed, honey.” Nevil grunted and Shelton slid an arm around his waist. “Try to sleep, at least a little. It’s going to be a long day tomorrow.”
Nevil relaxed against him. “You’re right.” He allowed Shelton to lead him to their room, and paused in the doorway to glance back at Tommy. “Thanks, man.”
“My pleasure,” Tommy said with a purr.
Shelton’s lips thinned at the interest in the young man’s gaze and tugged Nevil into the room, purposefully closing the door. He pushed his lover on the bed, cuddled up to him under the blankets, and held him close until they slept.
HER BLACK KNIGHT BY VIVI DUMAS
Born in the wrong century, Gwendolyn Braxton is searching for her knight in shining armor. She learns by taking a chance and hopping a plane to England, sometimes fairy tales do come true.
Gwendolyn Braxton was born in the wrong century. She submerges her life into the study of the Renaissance Era. She is the resident expert on all things Arthurian in the DC Metro area, maybe even the U.S. Unfortunately, none of her knowledge helps her to find her own Knight in Shining Armor. Actually, as a Black woman in Washington D.C., it runs men off like the plague. To make things worse, her mother has stepped in to fix her before she plunged into spinsterhood.
Morien Knight is far from home in search of an artifact lost in history, a history he longs to emerge himself back into. His small sabbatical from his mission to participate in the Kentland Castle Resort Renaissance Faire might lead him to exactly where he belongs. Morien learns when dealing with the poetic lessons of his old friend, Merlin, things may not always exist as you expect.
He ran the brush down the length of the mare. Her black coat carried a glossy sheen. Morien always admired the power and beauty of horses. The resort stables housed the highest quality animals. The last time he had seen horses of this caliber he was in Arabia, a territory close to his mother’s homeland in Northern Africa.
The lyrical sound of female laughter interrupted his wandering thoughts. Peering from behind his horse, he watched the two ladies cross the courtyard. He froze in midstroke, unable to tear his eyes from her. She tossed her head back, amused, the sun highlighting the tresses softly framing her oval face. Her golden skin reminded him of warm honey. Her bosoms strained against the green linen of her gown, pleading for him to release them. As she turned towards him, her brilliant smile and haunting gray eyes stole the breath from his chest.
Afraid, he darted behind the animal. It had been many years since he found interest in the opposite sex, but he never imagined it would cause him to react so foolishly. Fear never entered his vocabulary in the past, even in the darkest situations. This day, he cowered in the stables because a woman he had never met stole his fancy. This behavior was irrational and unbecoming of a male, especially a Knight of Arthur’s Round Table. He shook his head to clear his thoughts. He inhaled deeply to regain control of the rapid beating of his heart. His brothers would disown him should they witness his cowardice.
A boy dressed as a page entered the stable. “Good morrow, young sir,” Morien greeted him.
“Hallo, Sir Knight,” the blond lad answered.
Morien smoothed the last stroke down his mare. “Do you know who the Lady across the courtyard may be?”
“I heard she’s the Lady of the Manor this weekend. She is the hostess of the tournament. From America, my mother was saying.” “Interesting,” he murmured, more to himself than the boy. The boy stared at the tall knight. “Will you compete to be her champion?” Morien fitted the saddle on his horse. “I guess I may. I am to compete today.” “You know, you are very good with the talking like a knight. I try to play my character for the whole weekend, but it’s very hard. My mother corrects me all the time.” This brought a smile to Morien’s lips. “Thank you, sir. I also try very hard. It took decades of practice.” “Good luck in the tournament. I’ll cheer for you. I’ve never seen a black knight before.” “There were many Moorish knights, as they called us during our time. And many of us served as Knights of the Round Table.” He donned his armor emblazoned with the crest of Camelot. Very few would recognize its relevance in this day and time. In one swift motion, Morien mounted his horse. The page handed him his shield and lance. The heavy weight of the steel felt right in his hand. His lance balanced beautifully. A skilled artisan in Camelot had made it for him. Today, he was a knight again. For many years, he had traveled this foreign land searching for the Grail, as Merlin guided him to do. He almost forgot who he was and from whence he came. He missed the excitement of battle and the adventure of his prior life. But only when he found the Grail could he return to his homeland.
“Down those drinks and put your hands together for the lovely, luscious, cock swellingly curvaceous, our very own Red Riding Hood!”
Daniel bathed in the heat and light of the spotlight, cloak tight, hiding the leather and mesh he’d wiggled and fought his way into as the music swelled around him. The corset squeezed his chest, boots pinched his toes. It was glorious!
He shook back the hood and drank in the gasps that ran the room. Raven black hair he’d spent months growing out flowed in waves down his back. Lush red lipstick glistened on full pouting lips, his blue eyes lashed with mascara to an inch of their lives. Nothing fake for this crowd.
Stepping to the edge of the stage, he flashed the wide white smile that had brought men to their knees. He lived for this moment, the anticipation thick and heavy in the sultry air of the club. He paused, then flung open the red cloak and gloried in their sighs and spontaneous applause. Hands plunged into tight jeans and pulled out thick, fat wallets.
He struck a pose and belted out his song. Men and women flocked to him by twos and threes as he strutted and posed, and if some were a little too free with their hands, who was he to complain when Jackson’s handsome face winked at him from the bills stuffed into his delicious little outfit?
TEACHING TEACHER BY RAVEN MCALLAN
Finding love in a new town had not been in Seb’s plans. But life has a tendency to throw you curveballs – like Ruari.
When the new head teacher walks into his bar, Ruari knows he has to have him, and damn the consequences. When lust turns to love, nothing else matters. Together they will overcome, no matter what. Or will circumstances drive them apart?
Ruari’s head was spinning, his arms were stiff, his cock ached, and he wanted to be alone with Seb. It seemed like hours, but was probably no more than forty-five minutes, before he judged they could leave his bar staff to finish off. He swung behind the bar, grabbed a surprised Seb, and kissed him full on the lips. Cheers and catcalls sounded from the people around the bar.
“You.” He finished off with a squeeze to Seb’s ass, “are a fucking star. Definitely, a fucking star.”
“Too much info boss.” Dave was smirking at him.
Oh fucking shit. He realized where he was. Bollocks and buggery and any other appropriate epithets. How the hell was he going to sort this monumental cock-up out? He chanced a look at Seb’s expression, and sighed inwardly with relief. Seb was laughing.
“Feet. Mouth into?” Seb asked him.
He nodded. “As Ever. Okay we’re finished here. Coffee?”
Seb nodded. Kizzy, who had walked up to them unnoticed made a face, and sniggered. “That is the most pathetic euphemism I’ve heard boss. Coffee. Hah!” She carried on past them, still sniggering.
“Gotcha there, Boss.” Dave patted him on the back. “Take yourself off for er coffee. Don’t forget the Swiss roll with it.”
“Hells bells.” Ruari almost pushed Seb through the door and into the stairwell of his flat. “Are you sure you still want to take a chance on me. I shouldn’t be let out without a keeper. And my lips sealed.”
Seb pulled him tightly towards his body. Cock found cock and reacted in the best possible way. “Oh, you’re not reneging now, boss man.” Seb moved so his cock surged upwards. “All that is so easily arranged.”
“Huh?” He was so caught up in the sensations of Seb hard against him, he’d lost the thread of the conversation.
“Lips sealed and a keeper. I’ll be happy to be in change of all that. Soon.” Seb said.
“Okay, so, first we have coffee?”
Seb smiled and squeezed Ruari’s arm. “Coffee, where’s your car?”
THE LEGIONNAIRE’S PRIZE BY LISA A. ADAMS
Abagail Haber loses her nomadic family and her freedom when a Roman Legion destroys her tribe. Contemplating the possibilities of her future as a slave to the Emperor seems bleak. But when the Emperor marries her to the man who trampled in and conquered her village, Abagail can think of nothing but escaping. Then night falls, and visions of the muscled Legionnaire haunt her dreams.
Decimus Cassian wasn’t born a Roman; he was made. After 20 years of life under a Roman Emperor, he is ready to run. But, the Emperor has destroyed all his carefree plans by marrying him to his prisoner. How can he convince her that he can be trusted? And how will he ever be able to concentrate on escape when he can’t think of anything else but her?
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Decimus cradled her again, closer and tighter. He didn’t want it to end, but control was not an option that he had the luxury of any more. He rubbed his hand against her back, gliding softly up and down again. She arched her body into him and he could feel her breasts crushing against his chest. She radiated a sweet smell, and he was reminded again of his true home.
Decimus closed his eyes and tried to drown out his subconscious that was ridiculing him for taking part in such an indecent act. It frowned at him and scoffed, showing its disappointment. In the back of his mind, it steadily tapped its foot, trying to make him feel guilty for taking advantage of this poor enslaved creature. However, with the gentle breeze blowing, her scent consumed his mind. The feral man within came to his aid, arguing heavily with his subconscious and ultimately defeating it.
He slipped his hand down past her rounded backside, feeling its fullness and warmth. Working his way back up her leg, he slid her robe to the side and allowed his hand to push under her tunic, stroking her bottom, and pulling it forward into him. A moan escaped her lips and Decimus froze, fearing her reaction if she awoke. This was wrong and he knew it. He chastised himself for his savage ways.
Within moments, her breathing became regular again. Her body was warm and welcoming. He breathed her in, taking joy in this simple action. The battle within him still raged, unexpectedly rekindled by the threat of her waking. This was his wife. He should take her—now. That was what a woman was supposed to be for. Wasn’t it? His body screamed yes, but his mind warned him that this woman was something more.
“I’ll be back with the snow.”
The whispered words had settled in her conscience and taken root. It’s what kept her sane during the long years since, when she started to doubt her own sanity. Had it all just been a dream—a figment of her imagination—justification for what she had done?
Her lands were shrouded in heat. It shimmered on the horizon and steamed of the rooftops after the rare bouts of rain. The only passing of the seasons was the dates marked on the calendar, the Christmas Tree perched in the corner, and looking more droopy every year.
And yet, she clung to the hope of snow, to the promises given in the first flush of love, the one day it had snowed. A freak storm they had called it. A storm that had brought with it the love of her life. A night of passion and wonder was all they’d had before he had melted away with the sun.
She’d have thought him a mere figment of her imagination, but for the arrival of Gracie nine months later. Shunned by her community she waited and planned, eking a meager living for her daughter and her, always waiting for that elusive snowflake—until now.
He hovered outside the window, the flake so close, yet so fragile she was afraid to reach out and break the magic. Tears streamed down her face, as it started to snow in earnest, and the cold wrapped itself around her in a soothing embrace.
“I told you I’ll be back.”