Blog Archives

JENNA’S PUNISHMENT – new from Ruby Carew!

The newest story from my naughty alter ego, Ruby Carew, is out today!

JENNA’S PUNISHMENT, Book 1 in Jenna’s Best Friend’s Father series.

As Ruby I write red hot erotica stories that’ll curl your toes. 😉 All of Ruby’s stories are short and sexy little treats – for adults only! This book contains taboo erotic BDSM encounters between a younger woman and an off-limits sexy older man. And the stories can be stand-alone, or you can follow Jenna through the whole series…

JennasPunishment_cover

I’ve been attracted to him for a long time, but he is totally out of bounds. He’s my best friend’s father and I know I shouldn’t be lusting after him. But now he’s offered me a summer job at his place and things are heating up between us. He has just one rule. Don’t look inside the room.

But I just can’t resist…

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Some secrets are worth pursuing – especially when discovering them means you might be punished…

Jenna’s Punishment (Book 1) – OUT NOW!: books2read.com/u/mZw9MR

Jenna’s Two Masters (Book 2) – coming June 27th: books2read.com/u/3kZRn8

And, just like Ruby’s other releases, both stories will also be available in one box set – Jenna’s Best Friend’s Father, Collection 1 – coming soon!

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I’ve also been releasing snippets, excerpts, and teasers on my Facebook Page and in my newsletter! Sign up and pop over to make sure you can see all the sneak peeks! 😉

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Here’s a sexy little snippet for you…

I stepped from the shower and dried off. Oh, damn, I’d left my clothing out by the pool. I glanced at my bathing suit floating in the sink where I’d left it to rinse. I really didn’t want to pull on that wet thing again.

I sighed and wrapped the bath towel around myself. Cade had gone out to do some grocery shopping and had told me he probably wouldn’t be back until after I’d gone home. I opened the door and peered out, then hurried down the hallway to the kitchen, and out the patio doors. I picked up my clothes from the patio chair, but then glanced around, and decided to pull them on right here.

I leaned over and stepped into my shorts, then pulled them up. As I was fastening them, the towel slipped away and fell to the ground.

Damn. I leaned over and picked it up, then turned back to the chair.

“Jenna.”

I glanced up at Cade’s shocked voice, then my cheeks heated as his gaze glided over my naked breasts.

Oh, God, I was both mortified, and extremely turned on. His gaze locked onto my nipples as they peaked to hard nubs.

Then he spun around. “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to…”

I grabbed my top and pulled it on. “It’s okay. It wasn’t your fault. I forgot my clothes out here and thought… well, it doesn’t matter. You can… uh… turn around.”

Slowly, he turned back to me and I noticed a huge bulge pushing against his jeans. And his gaze wavered over my breasts as he tried valiantly not to look at my hard nipples pushing against the thin cotton of my top.

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And remember, if you do sign up for my newsletter, you’ll also receive a free erotic read!
http://www.OpalCarew.com/ReaderGroup

Read all about Jenna’s Punishment now…

HEAT is your next scorching summer read!

My next release, HEAT, is available now!

Heat_cover

When Rikki’s first love dies in the line of duty she vows to keep her heart guarded and never give it away again.

After moving to a new town for a fresh start, she is given the opportunity to show off her photography skills and shoot a sexy fireman calendar. Although taking the job might bring up painful memories, she knows this is her best chance at fulfilling her dreams of becoming a professional photographer.

While out with her new roommates, Rikki meets Simon and Carter and feels an instant spark of attraction… to both equally gorgeous and tempting men. This is the same intense feeling she had the first time she fell in love. But how can she feel that way about two men?

When she arrives at the firehouse to shoot the calendar, she is surprised to find that Simon and Carter are firefighters so she immediately pulls back on their growing flirtation. But Simon and Carter are men who know what they want, and they want Riki. As the chemistry between them ignites Rikki finds it hard to resist falling prey to her steamiest fantasies.

Now she has to choose between keeping her heart safe… or taking a chance on love… and possibly losing everything.

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With passion so blazing hot, you don’t want to put this fire out…

books2read.com/u/bzplEz

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Here are the first couple teasers I’ve been releasing in my newsletter! I’ve been posting snippets, excerpts, and teasers on my Facebook Page too. Sign up and pop over to make sure you can see all the sneak peeks! 😉

sexy fireman

sexy fireman

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And remember, if you do sign up for my newsletter, you’ll also receive a free erotic read!
http://www.OpalCarew.com/ReaderGroup

Take home TWO sexy firemen today!

DIRTY TALK is complete!

Dirty Talk, Blissful Surrender, the fourth and final episode in my Dirty Talk series, is available now! If you’ve been waiting for the whole story to start in on Tal and Sonny’s journey, now is your chance.

WARNING: If you are not caught up on this series, there may be spoilers below – just scroll right to the bottom for all the links you need! 😉

DirtyTalkBlissfulSurrender

Sonny has a debilitating fear of men. Tal is a scary looking tattooed bad-ass. Can Tal get Sonny past her fear and help her become whole?

After the incident with a man from Sonny’s past, Tal’s actions drop a barrier between him and Sonny that might be too devastating for either of them to get past.

Tal’s future is uncertain and Sonny has to face some things she doesn’t know if she can handle. Especially without Tal.

Although their relationship seems broken beyond repair, Tal tries to be there to support Sonny through her ordeal. Sonny finds strength in all that’s happened to her… and to Tal… and fights for what she wants.

She tries to convince Tal that despite what has happened, his nature is not that of a violent good-for-nothing as he’s come to believe most of his life. She opens herself to him, showing him her full vulnerability and trust, and they experience an intimacy and closeness neither would have believed possible.

Afterward, will Tal close up again and walk away, denying the future they could have together? Or will Sonny be able to convince him that, despite what they’ve both suffered, love can conquer all?

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SPECIAL BONUS:

Just like with the other three stories, when you buy this book, you’ll also receive an erotic audio from the story. Be sure to listen to it alone—or with your lover—and be ready for your panties to melt right off! 😉

Take home this very tender and moving HOT erotic romance series today!

http://books2read.com/u/bzpz6G

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Blissful Surrender is the fourth and final exciting episode in my Dirty Talk series, a poignant erotic romance about a woman struggling with her sexuality because of a devastating trauma from her past, and the strong, sensitive man who helps her find her way. If you love wounded bad-assed alpha heroes with a strong, protective streak like I do, then you’ll want to follow Sonny and Tal on their very special journey!

Here is the first couple teasers I’ve been releasing in my newsletter! I’ve been posting snippets, excerpts, and teasers on my Facebook Page too. Sign up and pop over to make sure you can see all the sneak peeks! 😉

Quote card - Dirty Talk 3 - Teaser 6Quote card - Dirty Talk 3 - Teaser 7

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And remember, if you do sign up for my newsletter, you’ll also receive a free erotic read!
http://www.OpalCarew.com/ReaderGroup

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The full Dirty Talk series includes:

#1: Dirty Talk, Secret Pleasurebooks2read.com/u/mBeLMR
#2: Dirty Talk, Whispers in the Darkbooks2read.com/u/mV7Vap
#3: Dirty Talk, Sweet Releasebooks2read.com/u/38D7Ka
#4: Dirty Talk, Blissful Surrenderbooks2read.com/u/4Xg9La

 

DirtyTalkCoverPhoto

DIRTY TALK 3, SWEET RELEASE is available now!

Dirty Talk, Sweet Release, the third episode in my Dirty Talk series, is out today!

AND the final episode of this series, Dirty Talk, Blissful Surrender, is up for pre-order now – and set for release next week! The wait is almost over!

DirtyTalkSweetRelease

Sonny has a debilitating fear of men. Tal is a scary looking tattooed bad-ass. Can Tal get Sonny past her fear and help her become whole?

After learning a terrifying secret about Tal, Sonny is been thrown into emotional turmoil and draws away from him. Tal thinks she’s backing away because of the step forward he helped her take in her sexuality.

Later, Sonny finally learns about Tal’s past demons and that draws the two of them closer together. She asks him a very special…intimate… favor that helps her take another tentative step forward in her healing journey.

But as the oppressive bonds of pain begin to loosen, and she starts to think she might become whole again, she runs into someone from her past, and that encounter strips her of all the progress she’s gained.

Can Tal save her from the devastating pain of losing herself again? Or will his actions only make things worse?

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SPECIAL BONUS:
Just like with the first two stories, when you buy this book, you’ll also receive an erotic audio from the story. Be sure to listen to it alone—or with your lover—and be ready for your panties to melt right off! 😉

Take home this very tender and moving HOT erotic romance series today!

books2read.com/u/38D7Ka

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Sweet Release is the third exciting episode in my Dirty Talk series, a poignant erotic romance about a woman struggling with her sexuality because of a devastating trauma from her past, and the strong, sensitive man who helps her find her way. If you love wounded bad-assed alpha heroes with a strong, protective streak like I do, then you’ll want to follow Sonny and Tal on their very special journey!

Here is the first couple teasers I’ve been releasing in my newsletter! I’ve been posting snippets, excerpts, and teasers on my Facebook Page too. Sign up and pop over to make sure you can see all the sneak peeks! 😉

Quote card - Dirty Talk 3 - Teaser 1

Quote card - Dirty Talk 3 - Teaser 2

And remember, if you do sign up for my newsletter, you’ll also receive a free erotic read!
http://www.OpalCarew.com/ReaderGroup

****

The full Dirty Talk series includes:

#1: Dirty Talk, Secret Pleasurebooks2read.com/u/mBeLMR
#2: Dirty Talk, Whispers in the Darkbooks2read.com/u/mV7Vap
#3: Dirty Talk, Sweet Releasebooks2read.com/u/38D7Ka
#4: Dirty Talk, Blissful Surrenderbooks2read.com/u/4Xg9La

DIRTY TALK, Whispers in the Dark, is out now!

DIRTY TALK, Whispers in the Dark, is out now! The wait is over! 😉

Whispers in the Dark is the second exciting episode in my Dirty Talk series. If you love erotic romance with a poignant story, a deeply wounded alpha hero who will do anything to protect his woman, and a heroine struggling to accept love, then this is the book for you!

BONUS: When you buy this book, you’ll also receive the erotic audio that Sonny listens to in the story. (This is a second audio, different than the one from the first story.) Be sure to listen to it alone–or with your lover—and be ready for your panties to melt right off!

Just buy DIRTY TALK, Whispers in the Dark and you’ll find instructions inside on how to get it. 

You can listen to the PG version of the audio sample from Book 1 here: https://youtu.be/62_UJcReJAY

DirtyTalk_Book2

Sonny has a debilitating fear of men. Tal is a scary looking tattooed bad-ass. Can Tal get Sonny past her fear and help her become whole?

Sonny longs to feel the intimate touch of a man. But she is haunted by a past trauma that leaves her terrified of being with a man.

She has found one way to cope. A stranger’s voice has been her salvation. She regularly listens to the sensual audio she found on-line, submitting to the man’s voice and allowing him to take her to ecstasy again and again. His sexy yet deeply caring tone makes her experience what it would be like to be truly desired by a man. She’s come to trust that voice.

Despite his scary appearance, Sonny feels an overwhelming attraction to her new next-door neighbor. She should be afraid of him, but something about him overrides that fear.

When Sonny is finally introduced to Tal, and hears his voice, she is shocked to find he is the man from the tape. She avoids him, unable to face the stranger who unknowingly brings her to ecstasy.

When Tal meets Sonny, he senses in her a kindred spirit. The haunting pain in her eyes draws him, but he flinches every time fear flickers across her face when she sees him.

When he finally confronts her, asking why she’s avoiding him, she tells him she heard the audio he’d published on the erotica sight and, to his total shock, she tells him that audio saved her life. Then she tells him about her past, tearing his heart in two.

It becomes clear that she is as deeply attracted to him as he is to her. He vows to find a way to help her get past her pain and be with a man.

Buy Whispers in the Dark today to follow this touching yet sexy story!

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TO BUY THE BOOK:

To buy DIRTY TALK, Whispers in the Dark (second in the series, out now!):
https://books2read.com/u/mV7Vap

And just in case you have not read DIRTY TALK, Secret Pleasure (first in the series):
https://books2read.com/u/mBeLMR

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Here are some of the teasers that I’ve been releasing on my Facebook Page. Hop over to see all the snippets and sneak peeks!

DirtyTalk_Book1_Teaser 2DirtyTalk_Book1_Teaser 1

Sign up for my Reader Group for exclusive uncensored samples of the erotic audios: www.Opalcarew.com/ReaderGroup

(And as always, you’ll also get some great free reads!)

 

DIRTY TALK, Secret Pleasure is OUT NOW!

DIRTY TALK, Secret Pleasure is out now! I’m so excited to see what you think of it!

Secret Pleasure is the first exciting episode in my Dirty Talk series, a poignant erotic romance about a woman struggling with her sexuality because of a devastating trauma from her past, and the strong, sensitive man who helps her find her way. If you love bad-assed alpha heroes with a strong, protective streak then you’ll love Dirty Talk!

BONUS: When you buy this book, you’ll also receive the erotic audio that Sonny listens to in the story. Be sure to listen to it alone—or with your lover—and be ready for your panties to melt right off!

Just buy DIRTY TALK, Secret Pleasure and you’ll find instructions inside on how to get it!

You can listen to the PG version of the audio sample here: https://youtu.be/62_UJcReJAY

DirtyTalk_Book 1
Sonny has a debilitating fear of men. Tal is a scary looking tattooed bad-ass. Can Tal get Sonny past her fear and help her become whole?

Sonny longs to feel the intimate touch of a man. But she is haunted by a past trauma that leaves her terrified of being with a man. Even when she dreams of being in a man’s arms, the steamy sexual situation turns into a nightmare.

Sonny has found one way to cope. A stranger’s voice has been her salvation.

Tal wants a woman to love him. To have a real, long-lasting relationship. But most women are intimidated by his bad-ass appearance, with his tattoos, piercings, and broad, muscular frame.

Tal looks the way he does because of a past fraught with pain. The tattoos aren’t going anywhere, so he needs to find a woman who will accept him for who he is… and was.

When Tal sees Sonny, he senses in her a kindred spirit. The haunting pain in her eyes draws him, but he flinches every time fear flickers across her face when she sees him.

Can Tal find a way to break through Sonny’s barriers and start something that might heal them both?

Buy this heart-rending erotic romance today!

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TO BUY THE BOOK:

To buy DIRTY TALK, Secret Pleasure (first in the series):
https://books2read.com/u/mBeLMR

To preorder DIRTY TALK, Whispers in the Dark (second in the series, releasing March 14th):
https://books2read.com/u/mV7Vap

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Here are some of the teasers that I’ve been releasing on my Facebook Page:

DirtyTalk_Book1_Teaser 1DirtyTalk_Book1_Teaser 2

 

Sign up for my Reader Group for exclusive uncensored samples of the erotic audios: www.Opalcarew.com/ReaderGroup

(And as always, you’ll also get some great free reads!)

My Best Friend’s Stepfather Goodreads GIVEAWAY!

 

Congrats to those who won my last two giveaways to celebrate my Mastered By series! For those of you who were not as lucky, I’ve got some good news…

I’m holding another giveaway! This one is for a chance to win one of FOUR paperback copies of My Best Friend’s Stepfather through Goodreads!

Again, no purchase necessary, and the giveaway is open until May 1st.

Follow this link to enter to win one of four paperback copies of My Best Friend’s Stepfather.

 

"I want you to understand that we're going to do this my way"

(https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/182359-my-best-friend-s-stepfather)

She’s always craved his touch…even though it’s forbidden.

When Ash is assigned her first feature as a reporter, it should have been simple: interview a real life Dominant for an article about BDSM. But her subject is none other than Darien Gallagher, her best friend’s stepfather…and it’ll be an interview she never forgets.

What started for Dare as a lesson in sensual domination suddenly has become so much more. He can’t deny the spark between them, even though he knows she’s completely off limits. With every seductive word, every lesson, Dare tests Ash’s resolve and pushes her boundaries. But at the same time, her boss Adam has her craving things she shouldn’t.

While Ash finds herself dreaming of both men, a dark secret threatens to destroy everything. But how can she hold onto a relationship that isn’t even real?

 

 

Please let your friends know! 🙂

And stay tuned for my next Goodreads Giveaway, starting May 2nd!

 

REMEMBER: You get a free erotic romance e-read by joining my Reader Group at OpalCarew.com/ReaderGroup!

 

Mastered by the CEO – Two Giveaways!

 

To celebrate the release of Mastered by the CEO, I am holding some giveaways!

First, I’m running an Amazon Giveaway to give you a chance to win MASTERED BY THE CEO (Kindle Edition).  No purchase necessary! Ends the earlier of Apr 24, 2016 11:59 PM PDT, or when all 3 ebook prizes are claimed. See official rules here: http://amzn.to/GArules.

Follow this link to enter to win a kindle edition of Mastered by the CEO.

(https://giveaway.amazon.com/p/9098b874d38c21cc)

 

Reader Group - Mastered by the CEO

 

Second, I’m giving away two paperback copies of PLAYED BY THE MASTER through Goodreads! Again, no purchase necessary, and the giveaway is open until April 24th.

Follow this link to enter to win one of two paperback copies of Played by the Master.

(http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/182720-played-by-the-master-mastered-by-from-opal-carew-volume-1)

 

Reader Group - Played by the Master

 

And please let your friends know! 🙂

Note: All books in the Mastered By series are stand-alone HEA stories with no cliff-hangers and can be read in any order.

Current books in the Mastered By series:

Played by the Master
Mastered by the Boss
Mastered by my Guardian
Mastered by the CEO

And coming soon are:

Mastered by her Captor
Mastered by the Sheikh
Mastered by the Billionaire

REMEMBER: Get a free erotic romance read by joining my Reader Group at OpalCarew.com/ReaderGroup!

 

Mastered by the CEO – New Release!

 

Mastered by the CEO - print cover

MASTERED BY THE CEO is out today!!!

This is the fourth story in my sizzling erotic romance BDSM series MASTERED BY. I’ve included an excerpt below and… if you join my Reader Group, you’ll get a free erotic read. See details further down. 🙂

Ebook:
Kindle: http://amzn.to/1TqbJFK
Nook: http://bit.ly/1QB8S9k
Kobo: http://bit.ly/21WGwPj
iBooks: http://apple.co/1VVWapi

Print:
Createspace: https://www.createspace.com/6091925
Amazon (print): http://amzn.to/23eFNGs

MB_CEO-Rachel-blurb-V2-Available Now

 

Rachel Clark

How did I wind up in King’s bed as his sex slave? Being totally dominated by him?

It all started when King bought the company I work for. The last time I was out of work—after handing King my resignation–it took two years before I found another position and I’m desperate to avoid that situation again. So now I’ll do whatever I can to keep my job.

But, in fact, even with me submitting to his every whim, there’s no guarantee.

King says I’m difficult and never do what I’m told–which is true—so is this simply penance for past sins? Or if I prove I’ll follow his commands without question, will he keep me on?

I don’t know. And frankly, I don’t care. When I’m in his arms, all I care about is staying there.

Forever.

But that’s not an option.

MB_CEO-King-blurbJames “King” Taylor

When I bought Bernier Electronics, I didn’t know Rachel was one of the junior executives. With our history, there’s no way I can keep her on. I need executives who will do as I say, not constantly question my every move.

I’d like to say it’s a difficult decision, but it’s not. Our past has proven she won’t fit in my management team.

But it’s never simple. When she worked for me five years ago, we had a clandestine affair. She insisted on keeping it strictly sexual, but I wanted so much more. When she left, I was devastated. Clearly, it meant more to me than it did to her.

The truth is I still want her in my bed. But I won’t hire her just for the sex.

She insists she can change, that she’ll do exactly as she’s told, but I know that’ll never work. Still, offering her the chance to prove herself—by becoming my submissive for an entire weekend—will prove to her it’ll never work. I never dominated her when we were together before, and the mere thought has me rock-hard.

I just hope I can handle losing her again after I experience the sweetness of her submission.

Reader Group - Mastered by the CEO

Get a free erotic romance read by joining my Reader Group at OpalCarew.com/ReaderGroup

Note: All books in the Mastered By series are stand-alone HEA stories with no cliff-hangers and can be read in any order.

Current books in the Mastered By series:

Played by the Master
Mastered by the Boss
Mastered by my Guardian
Mastered by the CEO

And coming soon are:

Mastered by her Captor
Mastered by the Sheikh
Mastered by the Billionaire

Excerpt:

King eyed Rachel as she sipped her juice again. He couldn’t help watching her full, pouty lips, glistening with juice as she put the glass down. When her pink tongue glided over those lips, his groin tightened.

Her long, chestnut hair was bound at the back of her head with a clip, all the ends neatly tucked in. It was longer than he remembered. Her hair had been too short to put up when they’d worked together, but he’d always told her how he’d love to see her with long hair.

Her eyes, green with specks of gold, remained fixed on her glass. He’d commanded her to be silent and she’d actually obeyed, as much a shock to her, he was sure, as it was to him.

Heat washed through him. He liked the feeling of her following his orders. But then, he’d always known he would.

When she’d called him Mr. Taylor, his heart had leapt. Of course, she always called him that in a professional setting…but here, when they were alone… His heart pounded. If she were to call him Sir, he’d probably burst at the seams.

As he gazed at her now, however, memories of the hot, sensual sessions they’d shared in his office had him longing to hold her in his arms. Longing to feel her naked body against him, her soft sensual murmurs whispering in his ear. To glide his cock deep onto her warm, welcoming body.

His cock swelled, but the band aid on her head reminded him she was in no condition to even walk straight let alone have wild, savage sex like they used to.

An even deeper craving swelled through him… to do something he’d never done with Rachel. Something he’d yearned to with a force so strong he’d had to hold himself back with an iron fist.

To dominate her. Totally and completely.

But if he’d even tried, he’d been certain she would have run for the hills. Most of the time, she wouldn’t even do what he told her as her boss. Trying to command her as his lover… Well, that was doomed to fail.

She lifted her gaze from her glass briefly, then dropped it again when she found he was watching her. At her uncertainty… the slight confusion in her green eyes… protectiveness surged through him.

He loved the fact she needed him right now. Loved that she’d agreed to stay the night so he could watch over her.

The predatory male in him couldn’t resist her frailty. Not to take advantage of her, but to take care of her. To know she was his woman and he would protect her.

Even if only for one night.

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Mastered 2 Box Set Author Spotlight Series, Day 5: Resistor by Madelynne Ellis

mastered2 quote card madelynneEllisWhat’s more irresistible than a hot, tattooed alpha rock star? One playing hard to get! Rocker, Spook, is about to take a sinful turn in Madelynne Ellis’ Mastered 2 story, “Resistor”!

Sex is the last thing on Spook’s mind, or he wishes it was. “Resistor” by @MadelynneEllis, part of #Mastered2! http://amzn.to/1EyxSHj #BDSM

Rhythm guitarist, Spook Mortensen doesn’t want a second chance with sound engineer, Allegra Hutton– not over a table, in a limo or in bed.

Spook Mortensen has one rule when it comes to relationships: just say no. He has his reasons. Good reasons. His policy of total abstinence has kept him out of trouble for years. Sex ought to be the last thing on his mind, but whenever go-getting sound engineer Allegra Hutton shows up, she doesn’t just hijack his libido, she downright screws with it. The only way to deal with her is to tie her up.

Alle realizes she’s upsetting Spook’s rhythm, but she’s under no illusion that he’s the right top to warm her bottom.

Amazon

B&N

iBooks

Kobo

❤ ❤ ❤

“Let’s go into the party suite.”

It was only a few short steps across the hall. Spook tried the door handle, then ushered her inside. The huge room was all decked out for when the auditorium emptied. Tables and chairs set out around the edges, canapés on the bar, and row upon row of filled crystal glasses waiting to be served.

Spook grabbed a glass off the nearest tray and downed it in one long gulp before reaching for another.

“In need of Dutch courage?” she asked.

“Guess so.” Second drained, he went for a third. “Course it’d help if it was something stronger than pissing sherry.” He slammed the glass back down against the tablecloth, then looked a little sheepish, possibly over how much force he’d used, though equally it could have been over his treatment of her. Perhaps indicative of its quality, the glass remained intact.

“OK!” He paused to drag both hands through the front of his hair, which left the blond strands sticking up. “Yeah. I’m sorry, I —”

“I’ve driven you to drink,” she remarked, casting a glance at the row of empties.

“Demented,” he corrected her. “You’ve driven me demented, as if the band didn’t do that already.”

“Pretty impressive of me, given we haven’t spoken for months.”

He took a deep breath and sighed, but faced her straight on. “I thought about you. A lot.

Maybe too much. Definitely too much.”

“Nice things?” she asked. Yes, she was fishing for compliments, but hey, five minutes ago she didn’t think they’d ever be having this conversation.

“Depends on your definition of nice.”

“Naughty,” she replied. “As in things that turned you on, and maybe got you sweating a little, and hard.” She flicked her gaze down to his loins and back.

Spook gave a groan. “I’d be lying if I said otherwise.”

“So, why didn’t you call?”

His hand shot out to seize another drink. Alle curled her fingers around his outstretched arm, making him pause. Slowly, he released the stem of the glass and steadied his gaze upon her face again. “Because this can’t be.”

“Why not? Is there someone else?”

“No — hell, no!” His brow furrowed. “There’s nobody.”

“Then you’re making no sense. What’s wrong with us enjoying some adult fun?” She sought his hand to link their fingers together.

Spook’s frown only deepened at the sight of their palms pressed together so tightly, but, she noticed, he didn’t pull away. “Alle, I can’t be who you want me to be.”

The ludicrousness of the remark surprised a smile out of her. “You are who I want you to be.”

“No.” He freed his fingers from her grip and used them to cover her mouth. ‘I’m not. I know you think you’ve found the person who’ll give you what you’re craving, but I’m not that man. I can’t… I’m sorry.’

‘Did I imagine you tanning my arse?’

‘No.’

‘Am I supposed to believe you’re not interested in doing it again?’

‘Of course not.

“Then what? Why? If you want it and I want it… Spook, we want the same thing, don’t we?

Why are you so dead against exploring that?”

He clammed up, lips pursed, deep, ocean-blue eyes downcast as he turned his hand to cup her cheek and chase a tear of frustration that tracked down her face.

“It was good between us, Spook.”

“Yes, it was. Better than good.”

She blinked, trying to clear her eyes, and not crumple into a blubbering heap. She was stronger than that. She didn’t cry, not with four brothers who’d mocked her mercilessly for it.

Tears had never got her what she wanted, quite the opposite. At home, her tears were what had marked her as a girl and had stopped her from getting her the same deal as the rest of her siblings. She couldn’t wipe the salt tracks from her skin though, without knocking Spook’s hand out of the way, and no matter what, she wouldn’t break that contact.

“I’m not worth crying over.”

“I’m not crying.”

He caught another tear on his fingertips and brought it to the tip of his tongue. Mesmerized, she watched him taste it, and felt her panties get wet. Sweet mercy! She could see him doing that after he’d pushed her to the limits of her endurance and she was just a breath away from numbness, sunk deep into a sort of sub-space of stretched nerves, surrender, and bliss. Her gasp left her lips gently parted and the remainder of her breath caught in the top of her lungs.

Spook’s gaze fixed upon her breasts, then lifted slowly back to her mouth.

She was going to kiss him.

She didn’t care if he pushed her away.

She was going to kiss him.

Kiss him now.