by Joey W. Hill and Desiree Holt
Ranch owner Quinn Pedraza has to find someone to run the saloon he won in a bet, but more than that, he needs a woman who can handle his alpha personality…and closet submissive sexual cravings. When vampire Selene Torres arrives on the scene, he gets everything he wants – and learns what he really needs.
Read the steamy Chapter One Excerpt on both Joey W. Hill’s website, Storywitch, and Desiree Holt’s Website.
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EXCLUSIVE FOR RIVERINA ROMANTICS
“This isn’t really the greatest place to take a lady,” he began. “We can—”
“All I want is you, right now, right here. And shut up.” Even though she liked the masculine rumble of his voice, she wanted to hear it strained by harsh groans, punctuated with fierce, fervent oaths as she did everything she wanted to him. She moved to the bed, lifting a hand to stop him when he followed right behind her, hands reaching for her.
“I know you’re a cowboy, so you probably come with your own whip. But now I’m in charge. Take off your clothes. Slow. I want to savor.”
His lips twisted at that. She could tell he knew women found him pleasing in all the right ways, a matter-of-fact thing helpful to get between their legs but sometimes maybe a pain in the ass to him when he wanted something more. She stretched out on the bed, leaning back on her elbows. Though she was conscious of the heat of his gaze on her, she lifted a brow expectantly.
He slid open the buttons of his shirt, keeping to a gradual pace to suit her demands. Maybe he didn’t do it in a striptease fashion, but he wasn’t that type of man. She didn’t mind that about him.
He had a gorgeous upper body, layered with a working man’s musculature, marked with some scars. He’d worked shirtless enough that there wasn’t much of a tan line between his exposed neck and forearms and the rest of him. She loved the look of a shirtless man in jeans and boots. When he sat down on the end of the bed to pull his boots off, she shifted and closed the distance between them, standing up behind him on her knees to slide her palms over his shoulders and back, feeling the way the muscles rolled as he performed the simple action. As he stood to slip the button of the jeans, he turned to face her, and she sat back on her heels, watching attentively.
“I’m used to girls talking when I do this. You don’t talk.”
“Why would I talk when that takes attention away from what matters?” She met his gaze, then lowered it pointedly, a nonverbal message. Get on with it.
An attractive quirk of his lips, and he pulled the jeans open, the zipper making its pleasing tick-tick noise. He wore basic cotton boxers, nothing fancy, and he took them down with the jeans, removing socks so the whole man stood before her.
He was tough and lean from head to toe, and sporting a cock stand that made her pussy even wetter just to look at it. Sliding off the other side of the bed, she gestured to the mattress. “On your back, cowboy. Legs shoulder length apart. I want to be able to see everything I intend to touch, lick, suck and taste.”
“Jesus.” He paused, giving her a once-over. “You’re a little overdressed.”
“That’ll change when I’m ready. I gave you an order.”
She was testing him. If she’d put a little flirt into it, she knew it would give him an out. He could laugh it off and rationalize that it was silly sex games, nothing serious, but she wasn’t in the mood to give him that much mental lubrication. She was going to be honest with this man from the very beginning and all the way through. Maybe because she sensed the yearning in him to cut through a world of bullshit and find something real, something solid, that she’d always needed herself.
Selene, this really might be a mistake.
Their gazes held. “Trust me, Quinn,” she said. “If only for this.”
Another weighted moment and then he moved to the bed. She wished she could be inside his mind, hearing every turn in the decision wheel that brought him to the mattress, but pleasure surged through her at the end result. He stretched out that long, powerful body, linking his fingers behind his head in a pose of deceptive casualness, even as his brown gaze stayed locked on her expectantly.
Moving to the end of the bed where he’d dropped his jeans, she picked them up. Sliding her hand inside the seat, she enjoyed the warmth of where his ass had been. Then she stripped the belt out of the loops. It still carried the heat of his body as well. She came to the head of the bed, leaned over him. He watched her as she curled fingers around his wrist, tugging so she guided his hand to the iron rails of the headboard. She brought the other there, too, making him cross his wrists before she looped the belt in a figure eight around them, cinching and doing a tie that would hold them unless he gave serious effort to getting loose. He didn’t look as if he had that plan.
Instead, his breath had stilled, then become a little shallow, even as the pulse in his throat jumped, increasing her blood hunger. His lips parted, tongue wetting them, an unconscious act of anticipation or anxiety.
“Feels good, doesn’t it?” she said.
He swallowed, eyes staying on her, jaw tight. “Don’t know.”
“What a strong man says when the answer is yes, but he doesn’t know how that reflects upon his masculinity. Grip the rails of the headboard,” she said. “Don’t let go.”
Keeping an eye to the lower latitudes, she saw his cock surge again as she gave the order, as she cinched the belt and did a loose loop around the rails to reinforce the hold of his fingers. She heard the expulsion of breath, saw the glitter in his eyes. Yeah, he liked this, even as she saw him continue the internal war over it. “Big, tough cowboy,” she said quietly, running a nail over his sternum, circling his nipple, biting into it with the edge. “Always in control. In control of your men, your ranch, this place, with women. But there’s a different kind of male power, Quinn. One that you’ve always known is waiting for you, waiting to serve a woman if she knows where to look for that treasure.”
He swallowed again, but he didn’t speak. Didn’t deny it. He was listening, learning about himself. About her. She could see all the wheels going in his head. He didn’t know what to say. He’d think about all of it later and they’d probably hit a few bumps as a result when he tried to backpedal. That was part of the pleasure. For now, it was all reaction, and she was fine with that. Very fine.
She stepped away, stood by the bed as she began to lift the hem of her knit shirt. “Close your eyes.”
“No.” His voice was hoarse. “Hell no.”
She stopped, gave him a leisurely once over. “You can look at me, or you can feel me. Which would you prefer?”
“You get both. Why can’t I?”
“Because you get what I give you. No more and no less.”
“What if I’m not willing to give you…everything you want?”
A smart question, and one he didn’t realize had gone beyond his control the minute a vampire walked into his bar and decided she wanted him. Correction. It was beyond his control if she embraced the whole humans-are-inferior-and-ours-to-use-however-we-want vampire credo. And if she decided she wanted everything from him.
No. Forty years ago, she’d been human herself. Albeit sometimes she felt like she was clinging to a mortal conscience by her fingernails, she still made the effort. Beyond that, she couldn’t want everything from him. She wouldn’t be able to stay here that long.
Wanting everything meant making him her fully marked human servant, and she’d not yet taken that step with any human. Female vampires were choosier, usually taking that step as they drew closer to the century mark, whereas male vampires might do it before hitting fifty. But looking at him, restrained by his belt and their mutual desires, she felt a clenching in her lower belly that was part sex, part need, part longing.
God, Selene. Shut up and fuck him already.
She hadn’t answered his question, too busy wrestling with her own, but now she summoned a smile. “If you close your eyes, you’ll find out if you’re willing to give me everything I want.”
He sighed, hard, but shut his eyes, probably not realizing his fingers clenched as he did it, a quiver running through all those impressive muscles. His cock just got thicker, standing up tall and eager. She removed the shirt, shimmied out of boots and jeans, leaving on the dark blue silky bra and matching lace panties. Then she leaned over him, sliding a hand over his biceps on the far side, pressing her breasts to his chest. She blew on his lashes, making him frown and then smile.
“You want to give me everything I want, Quinn, but you think you need to fight about it. I like a fight, for the right reasons. This is not that moment. Let yourself feel. Let me enjoy you.”
She straddled him then, and he groaned as she rubbed her lace-clad pussy, the crotch already soaked through, against the length of his cock. Reaching behind her, she cupped his ball sac, a nice weight in her hand, as she rotated her hips on him. “Feel how wet I am?”
“Yeah. Fuck, yes. Want your panties off. Want to feel your cunt.”
“Then ask me for that. Nicely. Remember ‘please’?”
“I want to feel your cunt against my cock. Please.”
“Very nice.” She stood up, removed her bra and dropped it on the floor. Then she shimmied out of the panties. When she sat back down upon him, she draped them over his face, pushing the crotch against his lips. “Taste, Quinn.”
He licked, then his lips closed over the fabric, giving it a gentle suck. She took her hand away, leaving the sheer garment spread over his face like a veil. His nostrils flared beneath thin silk.
“That’s all for you, Quinn. When you had Artie shoved against the wall, and I reached out and touched you, I wanted your cock right then. I wanted us to fuck right up against that worthless piece of shit like he didn’t matter at all.”
She also wanted to rip into Artie’s throat, make him howl in pain and gush blood for stealing from Quinn, for feeling like he had a right to take advantage of her cowboy. But she’d save that vicious tidbit. The sex side of being a vampire was overwhelming enough to humans.
“God…” His hips twitched, pressing his cock up against her labia.
“Easy there, bronc,” she said breathlessly, tightening her thighs on him. “Keep it in the chute right now.”
She reached between them, gripped him. Yeah, he was thick as a tree branch, and when she squeezed and stroked, his thigh and biceps muscles bunched, body straining to stay still. She let him go, stroked her pussy along his length, working him with the moisture between her slick lips as she leaned down and began to taste his chest, his nipples, his shoulders, moving back toward his throat. His fingers stayed clenched around the head board. He was fighting the restraint, but the arousal was also intensifying because of it.
As she reached the carotid, her fangs lengthened, not to be denied this time. So hungry. She turned her head, lifted it enough to see his eyes open beneath the thin silk, staring at her through that hazy barrier. His lips parted, seeking air, seeking her. She rose up over him, let him see her body arch as she gripped him once more, guided him into her, controlling the pace, the descent.
“Condom…” He had the presence of mind to protect them both, but she shook her head.
“Not needed, cowboy. Promise. That’s the one way you’re totally safe with me.”
Maybe the only way.
She was sure he wasn’t naïve enough to let that pass, not normally, but this wasn’t normal. That was obvious from how she could feel his passion unfolding beneath her, reckless, uncertain, wild. It was what she’d meant when she’d said if he ever unleashed it for the right woman, his response would overwhelm them both in a way he wouldn’t anticipate.
But he wasn’t the only one taken unawares by that. As she descended, inch by inch, feeling his cock stretch her, slide in deep, her eyes were caught by his behind that silken barrier. She should tell him to close his eyes again, but it was as if that lock held them over a chasm. Neither one looking away, knowing to do so would be to fall. The worse part wouldn’t be the tumble, but falling alone.
“Free yourself,” she whispered.
It took him a couple minutes. He twisted his hands in his bonds, pushed and pulled, strained, while she rode him like she might a cantering horse, enjoying the unexpected thrusts, slides and angles of his cock inside her. He was a good-sized man, filling her in a way that had her pussy spasming, clutching him hard. When he finally got one hand free, that took care of the other. He surged up from the bed, banding his arms around her to drive her down hard and snug on his loins, ripping a cry from her. She bowed back in his hold, gasping as his lips clamped over her right nipple. Gripping his hair, she worked her hips on him in a circular rhythm as he sucked, drawing deep.
“So fucking good,” he muttered. “Want to taste your cunt. Taste all of you.”
He thrust with the skill of a man who knew how to bring a woman’s body to pleasure, and the first orgasm took her fast and quick. Her clit swelled and hardened, pussy gushing over him. She cried out again, digging her nails into his back. It had been too long since she’d gone this route to feed and she didn’t know her own strength. She raked hard enough to draw four furrows of blood.
The scent filled her nose, and she brought her fingers to her lips, tasting what she’d taken from him. He flipped them then, all effortless strength. She was always an on-top girl, so it surprised her how much she welcomed the feel of him on her like this. She gazed up at him as he pressed her into the quilt, kept thrusting, giving her searing aftershocks that had her moaning, holding onto him, taking full pleasure in the ride. Since she stared into his face as he stared into hers, she saw that rigid state that took over right before climax, knew when his body was gathering. She reared up, slid her arms around him. When he thought he couldn’t hold out any longer, she spoke against his ear.
“Hold out for me, Quinn. Not until I say. Ssshh, cowboy. Hold…”
He groaned against her temple, kept thrusting, but she felt his body taut as a bowstring, obeying her. It was a drug all its own, none like it.
“Come for me, Quinn,” she commanded at last. Then she bit him.
She could release a rush of pheromones with her bite, and she did so now, propelling his orgasm to a much higher intensity, though if his was anything like hers, it was already more intense than expected. His blood flooded her mouth, and she’d never tasted a man that was so every-kind-of-taste she wanted. Bittersweet chocolate, just like the color of his eyes. Leather and sweat, open prairie, the heat of a horse’s flanks, sunsets over open land, the terrain she’d driven in darkness since she entered Texas. All of it was in him.
Oh God, she was so hungry. She really had waited too long to feed. A couple of his more thoughtful looks in the bar had suggested he’d picked up on some sense of vulnerability in her, and maybe it was the weakness that came with hunger. That wasn’t acceptable in normal circumstances, but all she could think of right now was that he would nourish her, help restore her in so many ways.
She knew how much to drink without endangering him. He’d be a little lethargic tomorrow, but he’d be fine, no worse than an aggressive blood donation. If she gave him the first mark, she could figure out where he was, imagine what he was doing…
It was good she was on the downhill side of her climax when she had that thought, because the shock of it might have stopped her mid-peak. She’d never been tempted to give a man any one of the three marks that were the steps toward making a human a vampire’s full servant. She was too young, right? Or maybe it was because she’d been dealing with too much shit from Laurent to have time to focus on it.
Quinn might just be wrong time, wrong place. But it didn’t feel that way.
The geographical locater, the first mark, wouldn’t be too bad. She’d always know where he was, would be able to tell when he was coming to the bar. Of course she’d scented him over a room full of people, so that was a weak justification.
Nevertheless, she did it, releasing the serum as she drank. It tingled through his blood in a way that made him shudder once more, but it also had the least side effects of any of them. It was okay to know where he was. She wanted to know where he was. Always, even when she had to leave him behind as a fond memory. Part of her history.
He groaned out the last of his release, her holding him close. She didn’t want to let him go, and he gave a half chuckle against her temple when he tried to shift off her and she merely tightened her grip.
“I’m too heavy.”
He wasn’t. He was like the shelter in a storm, his heat, his scent, the steady thump of his heart. What was wrong with her? He couldn’t protect her.
No one could.
About the Authors….
Winner of the 2011 Romantic Times Career Achievement award, Joey W. Hill has published over thirty contemporary and paranormal BDSM erotic romances, including four series. Her characters include everything from vampires, mermaids, witches and angels, to boardroom executives, cops and simple housemaids.
Free excerpts from all her works are available at her website, www.storywitch.com. Additional vignettes, character interviews and graphics inspired by the work are at the fan forum site, www.jwhconnection.com.
Twitter: JoeyWHill Facebook: www.facebook.com/JoeyWHillAuthor
Known the world over as the oldest living author of erotic romance, and referred to by USA Today as the Nora Roberts of erotic romance, Desiree Holt
is three times a finalist for an EPIC E-Book Award (and a winner in 2014), a nominee for a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award, winner of the first 5 Heart Sweetheart of the Year Award at The Romance Studio as well as twice a CAPA Award winner for best BDSM book of the year, and winner of the Holt Medallion for Excellence in Romance Literature. She has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning and in The Village Voice, The Daily Beast, USA Today, The (London) Daily Mail, The New Delhi Times and numerous other national and international publications.
“Desiree Holt is the most amazing erotica author of our time and each story is more fulfilling then the last.” (Romance Junkies)
Learn more about her and read her novels here:
www.desireeholt.com // www.desiremeonly.com
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