Monday, April 14, 2014

Art Collecting in a Dystopia

One of the first things any repressive regime does is crack down on the creative.
Scholars and artists will either serve the regime, or die. Every authoritarian state does this: China, Russia, Fascist Italy, Nazi Germany.

The idea even finds its way into fiction. Princess Leia deuterocanonically (Splinter of the Mind's Eye) joined the Rebellion because she had trouble finding entertainment. Her boredom with popular culture opened her eyes to how the Empire repressed the creative, and then, by extension, everyone.

In the dark future of the Eight Thrones universe, we catch some glimpses of popular culture in the Confederated States, arguably the most repressive regime in North America.

Women and people of color are not allowed to perform. The news is broadcast only by white men and without makeup. Sports are entirely white. Singing groups are all male. Female roles in movies are cut to bare minimum, sometimes not existing at all. Inspirational romance, Christian fiction and such are the only acceptable books. Imagine an eternity of movies like Fireproof and Left Behind, (not to smear my friend Eric Wilson who wrote the Fireproof tie-in) and books like When the Soul Mends (a popular Amish romance).

"Stevens punched buttons on the radio, the two-way turned down to a low hiss of static. He flipped through a male soloist, a men’s choir, a traffic report for Memphis, a preacher inveighing against immodesty in women, the news, a men’s quartet, more news and another preacher reading from Ezekiel. The cop turned it off." --Glad Hands

But in The Building, where the Ligatos Group holds sway, anything goes. And Ligatos' body-slave, David, is an art collector, of certain types.

A bit of an egotist, he collects replicas of famous David sculptures

These stand in various places in his living room. The pothos, Devil's Ivy, has nearly eaten his Bernini replica (the first one)

But David is a man of tastes ( trope: Wicked Cultured)
In his bedroom, he not only has a bed large enough for four, but an X-frame.
And the art on the walls is appropriate. He favors Mapplethorpe and Tom of Finland.


(he also has the very famous fisting one, but I'm not putting that up here)

Of course, any one of these, including the Michelangelo, is enough to get David executed, as if his taste for men didn't already cement that.

New proteges, especially from more repressive countries such as Heartland or the CS tend to stare, gaping, the first time they enter his bedroom.

(this post brought to you because Finland is putting old Tom on stamps!)

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Sunday Snippets Around the Cyberverse

Because "Chained to the Wheel" is coming out this Friday, have some samples of life in the Cyber'verse.

As always:
If you like the tastes, buy the books.
If you want to be part of the process, help out at Indiegogo.

Swimming Through the Net

Buy Link:

Pairing: m/m

Synopsis: Swift-Current is one of The Wheelman's Immortals, a mutilated hacker forced to run the Net in atonement for his crimes against the corporation. He doesn't mind his life, until he falls in love with another Immortal...

A series of alarm bubbles, large and unpleasant, rattled him from his drowsing. He drifted over to the mirror and ran one webbed hand through his long green hair. He liked it long for the private moments. When he swam in search of data, he shaved his head for better motion. He picked up a comb of bone, inlaid with pearls, and used it. A touch of kelp made his lips greener. A bit of squid ink darkened his eyes.

He checked his gills and tipped them with some kelp, too. His tail was fine, he decided as he flicked an errant snail off his fluke.

He was ready to go when Mark came in. The other runner walked to the edges of his program, then dived in, coming up as a merman himself. His tommy-gun became a trident similar to Swift-Current’s own, and his three-piece suit melded into a long silver body with rainbow-edged scales. The identity code read Deep-
Dives. Swift-Current smiled. In Mark’s program, he was listed as Senior Professor Shelby Randolf West.

“You look beautiful, like pearl and porphyry,” Deep-Dives sang at him. The newly-made merman, his short black hair in wild disarray, his gills flaring with exertion, swam to him. Their tails twined together and Deep-Dives embraced him. It had been weeks of objective time, much longer in the subjective world of the net. Mark, his own Deep-Dives, belonged to him here, and no one else.

“I missed you, my love,” Swift-Current sang back, feeling the compliment in every scale that had received Deep-Dives’ song.

Hard Reboot
 Buy Link

Pairing: M/f, some F/m

Synopsis: Sean's wife, Caitlin, was stolen from his bed and brainswashed. But the man who had her altered finds she is not what he wants, so he hires Sean to do a complete reboot of Caitlin's personality. But Caitlin has her own ideas about who and what she should be.

He got them onto the cracked concrete sidewalk and led her to the apartment, relief growing as he drew closer to relative safety. A block away, a skinny kid, maybe twenty, with a shaved head and Aryan tattoos left off rummaging in a trash bin and deliberately stepped into their way. He flicked open a rusty switchblade and eyed the bags. Sean stopped, barely ending short of the knife. The punk grinned, waving the blade in a lazy, hypnotic figure-eight.
Guten tag. You will be giving me your credchip, ja, und das fraulein’s necklace. Und ein bag mit die food.”

Sean shook his head, both at the request and the kid’s language rather than his threat. These kids never learned. This one wasn’t long for the streets. White-power types were ridiculously outnumbered.

Schnell! Schnell, schwein.”

“You’re not actually inspiring me to go any faster, kiddo,” Sean said. He checked for backup, since this type usually ran in packs, but the punk was alone. Sean didn’t care if he was lost from the group, a loner, or just high and hungry. He decided to end the stand-off before it started.

Sean flicked out his own razors, and relished the way the kid startled. He ran a tongue-tip along the flat of one. “I’ll see your blade and raise you four. And I bet I’ve been using these a lot longer than you.” The kid stared. Sean made a slicing gesture and he backed away. “Go try your blade-master bandito routine on someone else, kiddo. I’ve had a really bad day and you are between me and a cup of coffee. I really don’t want to mess up my nice sidewalk with your yellow guts.” Sean flicked again, very quickly, this time
snagging the front of the punk’s shirt and shredding two long gashes in it, barely scratching the kid’s skin. “But it wouldn’t take me more than a couple seconds. So you really, really, really want to get out of my way. Schnell, ja?” he taunted.

Turning the Tables: Double Dealing
Buy Link

Pairing: F/m

Synosis: Zara's husband David, one of the twin heads of a premier biotech company, may not quite be what he seems. His violent history, long suppressed with a neural implant, is re-emerging in strange ways, and he—or his twin brother—may be Double Dealing with their identities. It will take cleverness, courage, and the services of a world class hacker to untangle the web of deception around the brothers Gemini.

Zara appreciated the food and the wine, even as the conversation remained at a minimum. She tried not to talk, out of respect for Niall. David was too far down to talk.

Subspace was not exactly hypnotism, but a focused form of awareness. Zara had made her own journeys through the various levels, from silent and utterly focused on her master's pleasure, to lightly down and functioning in public with no impairment. Right now, nothing existed in David's world except pleasing Ariel. Even she, his own wife, was a secondary concern.

She did lay one hand over David's and smiled. "It's excellent, love." He smiled in return and bowed his head a little, graciously accepting praise from his Mistress.

"Ariel, how far down is he?"

Ariel smiled, a grim one that Zara had never liked seeing. "As far as I need him to be for our safety. I had his head checked. He has found a way to remove it." His smile vanished. "And if it weren't for a lot of very early training and programming, we would both be in great trouble."

Zara nodded. "Indeed." She addressed herself to her food and listened as Ariel and Niall talked of all the small things that lovers found dear. She wished she could be alone with David, bring him up to a level where he could speak and do the same. But until he was re-chipped, he had to remain at the silent and servile level of subspace. David was easily as intelligent as she was and would turn any higher levels to his own ends.

She shivered and had another drink of wine. As Ariel had said, those ends would be her death and Ariel's and all of LedaCorp turned into a bloodbath to sate the demons in her husband's skull.

That could not happen.

Coming April 11:
Tall, Dark and Wriggly: Chained to the Wheel

Buy Link

Pairing: M/m

Synopsis: Niall made one too many forays into The Wheelman's databanks. Now, he is paying for his daring, as the Wheelman's private housepet. And the demands are growing ever more difficult. (This predates the previous two, taking place at the same time as Swimming)

The pleasure was in anticipation. Three days later, Erik Ezekiel reminded himself of this over and over. He had sent Swift­Current to his rendezvous. If his legs still worked, he would be pacing as he waited. The extraction team had been dispatched to the squalid apartment where Niall lived with his brother, Sean. Surveillance drones showed Sean had left the apartment about ten minutes before, and taken his motorcycle.

Net­runners had no sense of flair, Erik thought. They all lived in such fetid holes with no good furniture or plumbing. They might have millions squirreled away, but most of them ate nutribars or protein shakes, never bothering with real food. Bad habits. He would give Niall expensive tastes before his wolf was immobilized.

Yes, to accustom the boy to a life of luxury, and then when he rebelled against his captivity as they all did, take from him every physical pleasure—that was an exquisite cruelty, one worthy of Gemini's subtlety, but purely the Wheelman's in viciousness.

But there had to be a choice. There was always a choice. The Wheelman was not a rapist, no matter how often the Net­tabloids called him such. Every man who came to his bed came fully consenting. Of course, it didn't mean he had to offer particularly attractive alternatives to his apartments.

Most hackers, faced with quadruple amputation, a gastro­insert feeding tube, and waste removal tubes hooked into life­support chairs were more than willing to enjoy good coffee, tea with real cream, real meat from real food animals, and hydroponically grown vegetables. They acquired a taste for the soft bed, the luxurious bathroom with hot water at every possible hour, the endless entertainment options. And if they were called on to occasionally pleasure an older gentleman in the Net, where he had full control of his body, most considered that an acceptable price for the good life.

The Timberwolf would be no different. Despite his surname, the Wheelman doubted there was enough of his legendary ancestral fight left in the line to cause a problem. No, his little Niall would roll right over like a puppy waiting to have its belly scratched.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Indiegogo Reminder

20 Days and Counting.

Watch me work without a net!
Be part of the Creative Process!
Buy an ebook! Or a paperback...

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Cleverness of Me

I have a bad habit of rereading my own work.
Here is this morning's piece, from Power in the Blood.

(The Kid, Ambrose Doolittle, is the one in the red neckerchief on the cover. Jacob shot him in about 1890 in a card game, making him Undying.)

He rose and followed Jacob to the bathroom, only to flinch at the sight of two iron spikes and a heavy mallet. It would be hard penance, but he would endure it. Jacob only did it from love of him. He needed to be perfect to carry out the Hunt, and Jacob would make him perfect once more.

"Stand within the shower stall, son," Jacob said. "Strip to your small clothes."

The Kid stepped out of his gun belts first. Then he shed his boots, socks, and jeans. He took off his shirt and folded it neatly. He stood in the little shower cubicle, wearing only his briefs, and waited.

"Hands above your head, wrists crossed," Jacob ordered.

The Kid obeyed, taking a deep breath to brace himself. He shut his eyes, not needing to see this coming. He held his breath until he felt the touch of the iron spike on the thin skin of his wrists. Then he let it out with a whispered "yes." He always said yes to

Long ago, they had walked on the beach in Mexico, enjoying the blue waters of the Gulf. Jacob had picked up a nautilus shell, a dirty drab thing. "We are like this shell," he had said. "We are filthy. But pain, holy pain is like the tide." He swished the shell through the water, washing it clean. "When we let it flow through us and fill us, it will wash back out, taking our filth and debris with it." Jacob  turned the shell over to show him the lustrous mother-of-pearl interior, clean and gleaming. "When we say no to the pain, to God's chastisement, we trap our own sin within ourselves." He folded the shell into the Kid's hands. "Remember the shell when the tide of pain washes through you."

Jacob struck hard, driving the spike through skin and tendon, between the bones and into the wall behind him. The Kid bit down on his screams, holding them as long as he could and thinking of the nautilus shell that still rode in his saddlebag. The tension made the second blow, which fixed him more firmly to the wall, twice as painful as the first.

"Beloved Ambrose," Jacob said, bending in for a kiss, his long frame over a head taller than the Kid's. With his maker's tongue in his mouth, the Kid let go of the screams, giving them all to Jacob, letting him taste and swallow them.

After several long minutes, Jacob broke the kiss, the Kid found the pain had subsided to a bearable level, and he no longer needed to scream. He stood, sobbing with pain, feeling the blood run down the skin of his inner arms. He flexed his hands involuntarily and gasped at the agony.

Jacob kissed him again. "Yes, Beloved. Take the pain and grow from it. For just as the caterpillar must die to become a butterfly, so we must die to become what we are. My beautiful little caterpillar, let this be your glass cocoon." He flicked the Plexiglas door with one finger.

He dropped to one knee, and Ambrose retained enough presence of mind to cross his ankles for the second spike. That one scraped tibia and fibula as it slid through the space between them just above the ankles. Jacob had told him that spiking the actual feet made for longer recovery, since it broke so many bones. They'd all had it through the feet once, when Jacob and Ambrose and all his brothers had undergone a purifying crucifixion ritual in the Philippines back in 1965. It had taken him a week to regenerate enough to walk.

Again, he held his screams until Jacob kissed him. This time, his teacher feasted on the screams, glutting himself like a vampire would on blood.

"Blossom, my little butterfly," Jacob said, closing the shower stall and turning out all the lights before shutting the bathroom door.

The Kid hung in darkness, bleeding and in pain. The ache of the spikes grew to a raging, bitter pain that combined with the muscle aches until he was sobbing again. "Yes," he whispered through the sobs, and the pain lessened a little. He breathed slowly, letting the tide of pain roll through him. It would pass through him and over him, fill him and empty him, and he would be worthy again, clean and gleaming.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Indiegogo: The Month of Writing Dangerously

The Month of Writing Dangerously campaign has kicked off at IndieGoGo

I'm raising money to take a one month leave of absence from work, and write a book.

Come see what goodies are available. Everything from $1 to $10,000 contributions will be rewarded.

An idea I want to remember

This is what we call Irish Planning.

I have been awake for almost 36 hours. If this still makes sense when I wake up, I'll take it under consideration.

Kickstarter or Indiegogo Campaign:

The Year of Writing Dangerously

The goal is to raise enough money that I can live on it and write books, to be published through Inkstained Succubus for cost effectiveness.


1) figure out how MUCH money. Living Expenses and publishing expenses. Convention Travel expenses.
2) Figure out rewards.
3) Make video
4) Set up Livejournal/Blogger for the contributors to talk to.

During this year, defined as 12 months, I must write 3 novels and 6 short stories. That's about 200,000 words, which isn't quite 1000 words a day.

Reward ideas (Each level includes all the previous rewards):

Included in the dedication
Early releases
A vote on which story comes next
A book signing in your city.
My backlist

So I throw this out to you, my loyal readers, friends and fanbase: Do you think I could potentially raise about $60,000 for expenses and publishing and travel?  Do you have ideas for rewards?

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Guest Blog: HC Playa

Please welcome HC Playa to the Gazebo as she talks about first and third person and shares a bit of her paranormal romance, Fated Bonds, with us.

First vs. Third
One of the most important parts of writing a story begins with point of view (POV). I’ve heard that some feel that first person POV is “amateurish”. I disagree. Granted, I’ve read some horrid books that did not pull off the POV well, but I’ve also read some great books from the first person perspective. Personally, I think it is far more difficult to write in the first person than in third. In first person POV the focus is very tight, very narrow, which newer writers often have a difficult time sticking to.

In first person, the reader immediately is thrust into the primary character’s life. A lot of YA literature is written in first person for exactly this purpose. It engages the young reader’s emotions as quickly as possible. Karen Marie Moning’s Dark Fae, definitely not a YA series, is written in first person. Steven Brust’s Vlad Taltos series is another non-YA series that comes to mind. Moning used the POV to emphasize the character’s growth. Brust used the POV to effectively relay humor and attitude. It can also allow for a greater degree of suspense and mystery, because the reader is limited to the knowledge that the main character discovers. This can be done in third person as well, and many, many novels written in third person limited accomplish the same thing. When it is he or she versus “I”, there’s that sliver of divide between the reader. First person invites an intimacy that almost feels as if we the readers are slipping into the character’s skin.

Third person, either limited or omniscient, allows for alternate character viewpoints. It can be used to let the reader in on information that the main characters do not know. The key to writing third person well, is to use active voice and only switch points of view if it serves a purpose. A story told from ten different character points of view will end up disjointed and confusing.

While I have a published short story, What Autumn Leaves, written in first person, my novel “Fated Bonds” is written in third person. I’m sure some authors sit down and analyze which point of view will better serve their purpose. I confess that I’m not one of those authors. While a story might begin its life as a nebulous idea, it takes its first breath the moment I visualize the main character. In a way he or she speaks to me. That voice is what comes out on the page. Sometimes that story plays out visually, with me “watching” as the third person and other times the character whispers his/her story. To date, only a few of my short stories have played out as first person stories, likely because the story is focused on one person. No matter who else appears in the story, it is entirely about that character. My novels tend to have several major players, and it only feels fair to give them all a bit of the stage, so to speak.

I encourage any new writer to try writing in a different point of view now and again. Stretching beyond your comfort zone helps you grow as a writer.

As a treat, here’s an excerpt from Fated Bonds, my newly released novel:
She balanced the plate on the glass for a moment to open the door and then grabbed the plate before it took a nosedive to the floor. She opened the door with a bump from her hip and stood in the doorway, glaring at her guest. “What do you think you’re doing?”
Bathroom,” he growled through gritted teeth.
Tala sighed and marched across the room. “I distinctly recall telling you to call me if you needed help.”
Mr. Werewolf stood beside the bed bent over with one hand holding his side and the other gripping the edge of the rickety old nightstand. The empty water glass lay on the floor. Tala shook her head and set his brunch on the nightstand. He shuffled a foot forward and grunted, his breath coming in fast and shallow pants.
I do believe you could use a hand.” She extended a hand, but he ignored it, shuffling the other foot forward. The nightstand rocked under his weight. She moved in front of him, blocking his path and folded her arms across her chest, waiting for him to realize he did, in fact, need help. He growled low in his throat, but she stood her ground. “Fast healer or not, if you move too much, you'll reopen that gash. That nasty purple splotch on your side isn't paint. You probably bruised a few ribs, too. It won't break your ego to accept a little help.”
Mr. Werewolf craned his neck from his stooped position to meet her gaze. “Ego?”
Tala cocked an eyebrow. “Yeah. Why else would an intelligent man, who's obviously injured, ignore an offer of assistance?”
Trust,” he said, through gritted teeth. “Ego has nothing to do with it.”

You can find Fated Bonds on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or order from InkStained Succbus. Also, feel free to check out my blog (, find my on Facebook (HC Playa), or follow my on Twitter (@HCPlaya). If you’ve read the book and liked it, consider leaving a review on Amazon.

My Sexy Saturday: Getting Sexy On

This week we’re talking about getting sexy on. You know…those slow dramatic build ups to that first kiss…or the foreplay involved with making a great sexy scene. There is nothing like a well written love scene and we want to know just how your characters get sexy on.

From Worth The Woe

Blurb: Giants' Peak holds adventure and love that is anything but typical for Molly Whuppie...

When food supplies run low in their large family, Molly and her two older but less capable sisters are sent away by their parents, forced to fend for themselves. Molly soon realizes she must put her skills to the test in order to save them all, from starvation, from the sinister woods, and from the fierce giants and vengeful giantesses inhabiting Giants' Peak.

But an encounter with three beautiful giant sisters gives Molly hope that not only will she and her siblings survive, but she might also find unexpected love along the way...

Seven Sexy Paragraphs:

Betta just soothed me and led me to the kitchen. Lizzie and Anna
took the giant’s bed, and Betta’s sisters went back to their own. I
stripped the soaked chemise off as Betta heated some water for me to
wash. She smiled to see me standing there in nothing at all.

She came to me, with warm water and a soft cloth, stroking away
the blood and wrack from my face. She smiled then and kissed me, not
taking me in her arms as earlier, but leaning into it like a naughty
milkmaid stealing one from her shepherd lad.

“Thank you, love,” she whispered against my mouth. Her big hands
covered my neck and shoulders and arms, then down my back and
belly. When they came up to clean my breasts, I arched to meet them
and kissed her, wrapping my arms around her. She dropped the cloth,
heedless of my still-fouled legs staining her chemise, and clutched my
breasts as she kissed back, her tongue conquering my mouth with its
slow strokes.

Her thumbs grazed my nipples, sending the same sparkles through
me as her kiss had, only harder and fiercer now, igniting that space
between my legs until it begged to be touched. I kissed her harder,
shoving my hips against her. She slid a broad thigh in between my legs
and I rubbed against it, trying to quell the need that ached all through

All I did was burn hotter, my skin flushing. She cupped one breast
and bent to tongue the nipple. I rubbed hard against her, the nameless
ache shivering all through me.

“Molly, Molly, I love you. From the moment I saw you, I knew you
were mine.” Her words blew warm over my body, teasing the nipple
even more.

I scarcely listened. Such foolishness was unfortunately common
among pampered daughters who believed in love at first sight. But I
wanted… I had no idea what I wanted. I knew that rubbing might get
me there, or it might not. But the ache rode low in my belly, knotted
and twisting.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Guest Blogger: Peter Tupper

I encountered Peter when writing for Circlet's Like a Corset Undone, and I was thrilled when he submitted a story for the Filed Off anthology by Inkstained Succubus. Alas, the anthology fell through, but he let us publish him as a stand alone. I love his tale of cyberpunk lesbians.

Greetings. My name is Peter Tupper. I’m a writer and journalist in Vancouver, BC, and I’m here to tell you about my new book, An Angel Has No Memory, published by Inkstained Succubus.
My writing career has followed an odd path, one I wouldn’t have predicted. My first professional fiction sale was “Subjective Lens”, sent to then-fledgling erotica publisher Circlet Press in the early 1990s. I had just got into BDSM, both as an academic subject and as my own sexuality, and I wrote an odd, white-elephant story called “Subjective Lens”. It was over-long and rather talky (and the only published work of a complicated future history I had planned and since abandoned), but they accepted it for the S/M Futures print anthology.
My fiction writing career lay fallow for several years, while I worked as a freelance journalist and tried several other projects, including an abandoned fantasy novel.
In 2005, I started a researching and writing a history of consensual sadomasochism, something I thought was lacking. Toni Morrison wrote that, “You should write the book you would love to read.” I documented my work at My research into Victorian sexuality, and theorizing about the deeper meaning of kink, gave me the idea for a short story, “The Innocent’s Progress”. When Circlet Press, newly reborn as an ebook publisher in the age of Kindle, put out a call for stories for a collection of steampunk erotica, Like a Wisp of Steam, I submitted “The Innocent’s Progress”, and was accepted. A similar process let to my indirect sequel story, “The Pretty Horsebreaker”, being published in the follow-up anthology, Like a Corset Undone.
That was the early days of the steampunk boom, and since I already knew a lot about Victorian history and sexuality, I contacted Circlet and proposed a collection of steampunk stories, including the two previously published stories and new ones. This became a set of loosely connected short stories set in a quasi-Victorian alternate world, with characters who are analogs of real historical figures. I also wrote “The Impurity”, a revisionist version of “The Strange Tale of Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde”, with the good doctor deciding to feed his formula to his maid. The Innocent’s Progress & Other Stories launched as an ebook in 2010, to generally good reviews, though not great sales.
Circlet has published a series of themed collections of erotica, some united by a subject, other by a writer. I contributed to the the dystopian fiction anthology Like an Iron Fist (“Tragedy, then Farce”) and the collections based on the works of Arthur Conan Doyle, with “Songs without Words” in Elementary Erotica, and HP Lovecraft, with “Konigsberg’s Model” in Whispers in Darkness. I also got into writing flash fiction (stories less than 1,000 words) which were published at My other recent fiction works include the zombie erotica “The Charge of the Soul”, published by Forbidden Fiction both as a stand-alone ebook and as part of the Touched by Death ebook and print anthology.
My work seems like an odd fit in the genre of erotica, as I come at the subject from a more intellectual than romantic angle. One reviewer said that I write more about sexual themes than sexual scenes, and I agree, being interested in the social context of sexuality in fantastic or science fictional settings.

My first published non-erotica story, “The Thing in the Printer”, will be part of Cthulhu Lives, a Lovecraftian anthology to be published by Ghost Wood later in 2014. Where I go from here, I don’t know. From what I’ve observed, to shift from writing fiction as a hobby to even a part-time career requires volume and specialization, neither of which are my strength. My output is erratic and varies widely in genre, mood and style. My other muse, for non-fiction, also calls to me, and I’ve renewed my commitment to getting my BDSM history book finished and published. 

My Sexy Saturday: I Feel Sexy 

We're trying the link back, instead of a linky list this week.

"We love the stories where the characters are confident in their sexuality. We love those stories where one of those characters has to teach the other that they really are sexy. We love it every time when they get together and show us just how sexy they feel. Share them with us this week!"

From Spellbound Desire

Buy Link:

On the Nightside of Memphis, werewolves teach college, zombies load trucks and private investigator D. J. is hard at work, finding missing persons, solving cases and drinking herself into an early grave. Then Bran walks into her office, asking for her help in destroying the demon Oeilett, and everything changes.

Something about the battered, scarred combat mage ignites all the lusty feelings D. J. thought she had successfully drowned in rum. The mana he exudes weaves a web of desire over her, clouding thought and making the sultry summer even steamier.

Bran’s body and face may be marked by his previous battles, but everything under the black leather kilt works perfectly, and D. J. learns there are more things in Memphis, the hellplanes and her own heart than she had ever imagined.

Seven paragraphs

I stepped out of her office and leaned against the wall, letting the grin break out all over me face. I heard the smash of the crockery on the door and wondered if it was the mug with the wee sooky on it. Her cousin must be a right bampot to get her that one, and I wondered if she even understood the joke. Probably not, being a Yank and all. A wee sooky back home in Glasgow and points north wasn’t the tiny succubus she’d handed me, but a long low-down kiss. I could enjoy a wee sooky from her. Been a few years since I’d had one.

The old men what had given me the name and address when I found out Oeilett was on his way to Memphis didn’t tell me much about Admire. Hard drinking, abrasive, hard to work with, but nothing more. I’d been expecting a chap, Humphrey Bogart and all that rot, and instead I got Miss Porcupine, all bad temper and overheated sex drive. Her knickers were so hot for me, I could smell it all over the room. It looked like she didn’t know what to do about it neither, so I let that part of the conversation lie. Wouldn’t have minded bending her over her desk, though and pounding the fury right out of her.

I expected a wee peekie under the kilt would have had her ankles over her head in that Murphy bed I’d seen the frame of. Been a long fair while since there’d been any sweet stuff let go for me. Aside from me Ma and sibs, nobody wanted me to hang around much. The ladies and bairns went screeching from my face. The bolder lads always wanted to take me on, see if I was as tough as the scars.

No one with a lick of mana even tried, though. The weak ones practically pissed themselves when I got inside a half-kilometer. The more powerful ones backed down. This Admire woman, she had enough mana to know what I was, to feel my power. But she wasn’t running. I think it just made her more pissed.

Dried-up old Witan pricks back in Salem’d sent me out on this one. They didn’t see a problem with me hunting a fewking demon until I dropped dead of old age. And a very old age it’d be if they had their way. Fifty was almost twice the usual combat mage life expectancy. And for a man, it meant this was my last job. The ladies had to work to fifty-five. I thought it was right unfair, but they had to take a couple years off to have the required two babies. We boys just donated once a year to the cause of making more wizards. I could retire if I survived. I expected the Witan didn’t want to see that. My big sister had embarrassed them enough by being the first combat mage in seventy years to retire. Now it boded that two of us were going to manage it. 

They couldn’t have the combat mages expecting to live to old age. In our job, we take Death as our lover and live with her close to hand. No mage ever has a choice of vocation. I had to go where the mana sent me and learn what it wanted of me before I could control it. It’s the same for everyone from the weakest talismonger to the most powerful sorcerer.

Dried-up old pricks the Witan were, and they wanted mine to dry up just as bad, I thought. Been six years since I’d had a woman, and her I’d had to pay. I could practically smell Admire even through the door. So much adrenaline and all the sweetness of a lady and just a little sweat she’d worked up being mad at me, I breathed it all in like perfume.