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Author, Victoria Behn Talks About D L King’s New Slave Girls Anthology

Giving in to Get Away

Victoria Behn

Victoria Behn Slave Girl tour 8 JuneThere are a lot of inspiring facets to D L King’s Slave Girls anthology. I could go all fan girl about the stories that turned me on so much that I became both the docile kitten and the famished tigress for my partner the day after receiving my contributor copy (we’re going to take our time working through some of the new ideas in there – erotica anthologies are a little like D&D source books, don’t you find?). Then there’s the clever arrangement of scenarios which cover a wide variety of submissive possibilities, meaning that (like the best box of chocolates) you’re never bored or dissatisfied. But the key aspect to this collection for me is the keen insight of its authors into what really drives us to explore our submissive nature.

These writers understand that the urge to obey, to be trussed up, to feel the unyielding sting of a quick cane across the backside, is as much about being in control as it is giving control to another. It’s that sacrifice of freedom in order to gain access to another world, one in which all the decisions are made for us and the endorphins flow like milk and honey. The addictive intoxication that comes from submission is summed up in the first piece in the book, Evan Mora’s Noise:

At times you can be unpredictable, preferring to keep me on edge and guessing. But this rhythm, hard and unyielding though it is, calms me in some indefinable way. The world and all its noise fall away and my focus turns inward. Feeling. Sensation. This is all there is.

And what can be more freeing than that complete trust in another person that means you allow them to control your movement, your comfort, your breath? It’s almost spiritual and there’s certainly a link in my mind between the real high that comes with a serious submissive session and the religious euphoria experienced by monks after flagellation.

Slave Girls: Erotic Stories of Submission explores the inner monologues that precede the moments before, during and after submission so there is a real sense of being there. The scenarios are both commonplace and fantastical, with liaisons which start anywhere from a supermarket to a bar, through to an intricate play cage housed in an impressive New York penthouse. The dominants are thoughtful, careful and absolutely sure that their slaves will behave – one way or another.

There are too many demands on all of us, every minute of every day. We’re expected to take charge at work, take responsibility at home, take care of the details – wherever we are. But what if, for just a little while, you were unable to make any decision at all? What if the only thought running through your mind was the instinctive, animal reaction to a hand, rushing through the air to meet your flesh? That is what Slave Girls gives you. It’s a book filled with moments of freedom. Give yourself to the authors. Let us take you to that moment. Then let your mind wander off into its own scenarios but remember…don’t misbehave. There will be repercussions.

Follow the Slave Girls Anthology Tour on these Blogs:

June 1  D. L. King  http://dlkingerotica.blogspot.com

June 2  Rachel Kramer Bussel  http://lustylady.blogspot.com

June 3  Alison Tyler  http://alisontyler.blogspot.com

June 4  Valerie Alexander  http://www.valeriealexander.org

June 5  Nina Fairweather  http://ninafairweather.com

June 6  Sommer Marsden  http://sommermarsden.blogspot.com

June 7  Evan Mora  http://dlkingerotica.blogspot.com

June 8  Victoria Behn  http://kdgrace.co.uk

June 9  Donna George Storey  http://sexfoodandwriting.donnageorgestorey.com

June 10  Teresa Noelle Roberts  http://www.teresanoelleroberts.com

June 11  Erzabet Bishop  http://erzabetsenchantments.blogspot.com

June 12  Lisette Ashton  http://ashleylisterauthor.blogspot.co.uk

June 15  Giselle Renarde  http://donutsdesires.blogspot.com

June 16  Lisabet Sarai  http://lisabetsarai.blogspot.com

June 17  Graydancer  http://www.graydancer.com

June 18  Deborah Castellano  http://deborahcastellano.tumblr.com

June 19  Nym Nix  http://nymnix.wordpress.com

June 21  Lydia Hill  http://lisehorton.blogspot.com

Purchase the Slave Girls Anthology at these online stores:

Cleis Press

Barnes and Noble

Amazon US eBook

Amazon US print

Amazon UK eBook

Amazon UK print

Powell’s

 

 

The Waiting is Almost Over! L C Wilkinson’s ALL of HIM Out Tomorrow!

LC Wilkinson BlitzRapture is coming…

Part Two. All of Him by L.C. Wilkinson, the sequel to All of Me, is published by Xcite on May 29th.

Passion knows no boundaries in the continuing story of an unforgettable romance.

Orlando Locatelli. Restauranteur and rising TV star. Damaged, beautiful and oh-so-young.

Flick Burrows. 40-year-old actress. Ambitious, talented and also damaged. Despite the odds – age, background and a jealous step-mother – their love triumphed. But just as Orlando moves to London to cement their relationship, Flick is offered the opportunity of a lifetime: a starring role in an American TV drama.

Separated by an ocean, they are determined their love will survive. Soon Flick is thrown into the media spotlight and so is their affair. The claws are out. Insecure about her image, her age, her future with her unpredictable, secretive Orlando, when she receives mysterious, threatening letters Flick is driven to the edge of despair. And Orlando is fighting enemies much closer to home.

In a world where they are constantly watched, and destructive forces lie unseen, waiting to pounce, how can their love unfurl and grow?  But intense passion is hard to stop and some souls are meant to be together, no matter what.

Here’s what they’re saying:

‘Hot, steamy and races along faster than one of Christian Grey’s private jets. If you liked Bared to You
LC Wilkinson blitz 2and The Siren, you’ll love this.’ – 
SK Quinn, Bestselling author of The Ivy Lessons (Devoted Trilogy)

‘Just finished All of Him, and wow, what a rollercoaster ride! Absolutely bloody brilliant! Hot, sexy, with a fantastic plot, it is just amazing.’

You can pre-order here:

http://www.xcitebooks.co.uk/Book/11668/All-of-Him.html and here:http://www.amazon.co.uk/All-Him-Rapture-Book-Two/dp/1783756071/ref=pd_rhf_eebr_p_t_3_6CVY

Find L.C. Here: 

http://lcwilkinson.com

https://twitter.com/ScorpioScribble

 

 

Knowing Her Place- Jess Sanders is on her way home…Wherever that is… (@kay_jaybee)

Per Sub 3

Trilogies have been very much “the thing” in the world of erotica for some time; and as their popularity hit new highs last year, I couldn’t believe my luck when I was asked to write one for Xcite Books.

Based on my (originally standalone) novel, The Perfect Submissive, the writing of this trilogy (of the same name), was a dream come true for me.

The story of Miss Jess Sanders, and her unexpected journey into the world of the professional sexual submission, begins with Jess taking a job as a booking clerk in a Business hotel in Oxfordshire. Before she knows what’s happening, the hotel’s manageress, Mrs Peters, has earmarked Jess as a trainee for her real domain- the fifth floor- where a whole new meaning comes to the term “adult entertainment.’ (The Perfect Submissive).

No sooner has Jess adjusted to, and accepted, the fact that she was born to live a submissive lifestyle, when she is unceremoniously whisked away from the Fables Hotel, and unbundled onto a plane to Scotland with Miss Sarah, under the custody of her most feared client, David Proctor. Informed they are being taken away to train up David Proctor’s new sub…however this isn’t entirely the case; for the women suddenly find themselves … (The Retreat)

In the final part of Jess’s story she faces the toughest challenges of all- not only finding her way home- but deciding exactly where that home- and with who…

Knowing Her PlaceKnowing Her Place Blurb-

With her head full of unanswered questions, exhausted from her fairytale experience at the hands of Dr Ewen, Lady Tia, and the staff of the adult entertainment service provided by The Retreat, Jess Sanders is desperate to leave Scotland, and return to her usual submissive position at the exclusive Fables Hotel in Oxford.

Having been thwarted in his plans to keep Jess at The Retreat permanently, its owner David Proctor isn’t willing to let Jess go back to her dominatrix, Miss Sarah, and her employer, Mrs Peters, without sending her on one final mission. Only if she succeeds in her task, will Proctor remove the collar of servitude he has locked around Jess’s neck.

With a list of five unknown addresses in her hand, Jess Sanders is placed in a car and driven from The Retreat towards England. With no idea what or who awaits her at the first stop, all Jess can hope for is that her journey will eventually take her back to where she belongs.

To the Fables Hotel, where Jess Sanders truly knows her place.

I hope that’s whet your appetite…how about a little extract from Knowing Her Place, just to make sure!

Prologue

‘In about five hours.’

‘That sounds perfect. Though I have to admit, I’d long since given up on you honouring your promise.’ The man’s voice resonated disbelief down the phone.

Without betraying his annoyance that his word had been questioned, David Proctor replied smoothly, ‘I always keep my word, but as I promised you the best, then you’ve had to wait until I found the best. There are many who are merely good. This girl is excellent.’

Proctor could hear the breathing of the man on the end of the line quicken in anticipation.

‘Then I will prepare myself.’

His mobile still clasped to his ear, David flicked the harnessed breasts of his lover absentmindedly before saying, ‘And you know what to do when it is time for her to depart again?’

‘Don’t worry, Proctor! I have the instructions you sent. Transportation can easily be arranged for the time of her departure.’

‘Then I’ll leave you to your forthcoming pleasures. I look forward to your report.’

Hanging up the call, David bent to his submissive, kissing the sides of her gagged mouth as he stared into her hopeful eyes. With a salacious smile at her, he pressed another number into his phone pad. ‘One more call, my darling, and then it will be your turn.’

A small mew of frustration escaped from her lips as, for his fifth phone conversation in succession, David walked away from her.

Proctor needed 100 per cent of his concentration for this final call.

 

‘I’d be careful if I were you, young man, or you’ll build the abilities of this young woman up to the point where my expectations will be so great, she can only disappoint.’

‘Miss Sanders will not disappoint.’

‘If you say so, David.’ Ms Webster snorted out a derisive laugh. ‘Then I’d better get ready for her arrival. Does she know what is expected of her?’

‘Beyond being given your address, she will be told nothing until her arrival at your home.’ David paused as if considering giving additional information.

He decided against it.

*****

Although each of The Perfect Submissive Trilogy novels can be read on their own, you’ll get far more out of Jess’s adventure if you have followed it from the beginning. You can find all the buy links on Amazon, and at all good book and e-book retailers.

The Perfect Submissive

Amazon UK | Amazon US

The Retreat

Amazon UK | Amazon US

Knowing Her Place

Amazon UK | Amazon US

 

Many thanks Kd, for letting me come and share a little of my latest novel with you today!

Kay xxx

 

Kay JaybeeBio-

Kay Jaybee wrote The Perfect Submissive Trilogy, (The Perfect Submissive, The Retreat, Knowing Her Place, Xcite, 2012-14), and the novels Making Him Wait, (Sweetmeats Press, 2012), and The Voyeur (Xcite, 2012), (Xcite 2012), as well as the novellas, Not Her Type: Erotic Adventures With A Delivery Man (2nd ed. 1001 NightsPress, 2013), Digging Deep (Xcite, 2013), A Sticky Situation, (Xcite, 2012), and The Circus, (Sweetmeats Press). She has also written the anthologies Christmas Kink, (KDP, 2013), The Collector (Austin & Macauley, 2012 & 2008), The Best of Kay Jaybee (Xcite, 2012), Tied to the Kitchen Sink, Equipment, (All Romance, 2012), Yes Ma’am (Xcite e-books, 2011), Quick Kink One and Quick Kink Two (Xcite e-books, 2010). Kay has had over 80 short stories published by Cleis Press, Black Lace, Mammoth, Xcite, Penguin, Seal, and Sweetmeats Press.

Details of Kay’s work, past, present and future can be found at www.kayjaybee.me.uk

You can follow Kay on -

Twitter- https://twitter.com/kay_jaybee

Facebook -http://www.facebook.com/KayJaybeeAuthor

Goodreads- http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/3541958-kay-jaybee

Brit Babes Site- http://thebritbabes.blogspot.co.uk/

 

Kay also writes contemporary romance as Jenny Kane – www.jennykane.co.uk

 

Strangely Sexy: The Latest Heat from Harlem Dae

Hi Kd, thanks so much for inviting me over to play today. I’ve brought with me a new co-authored short story BDSM trilogy that’s just hit the shelves and I’m really excited about – A Bit of Strange.

Last year my co-author Natalie Dae and I were playing around with BDSM plot lines as we came up with the idea of sex with a stranger as a basis for a new relationship. We loved the thought of sexy sideways glances, mutual attraction and then a secret liaison somewhere ordinary but super risqué. Add in the BDSM factor and our imaginations were soon running wild. A Bit of Strange is published by Totally Bound and the final book is out now – this serial is definitely best read in order as it follows the journey of two souls finding what it is that really hits their spot and makes them shine.

It was great to write, and as I always find when working with Natalie the tales we tell are edgy, out there, dark and pain is pleasure, danger is excitement. This experience was no different and from trains to supermarket to dirty alleys these two strangers really do try each other on for size, in every sense of the word. But there are elements of romance, of heart-strings being tugged, of course there are, because A Bit of Strange is also a story of attraction and commitment as well as love and lust – I hope you enjoy, though trust me, you’ll never look at those big trolleys at the supermarket they move boxes around in the same way again!

Beauty and Pain

Harlem Dae 5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Totally Bound

 

Pain and Pleasure

Harlem Dae 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Totally Bound

 

Pleasure and Danger

Harlem Dae1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Totally Bound

 

A BIT OF STRANGE

Strangers who share the touch of heated skin, the gasps of delight joined bodies create and the bliss a moment of ecstasy generates, are bound by an invisible thread that is as strong as it is vulnerable.

But can that thread turn to more, become a force to be reckoned with, the foundation of a beautiful experience and a future where dominance and submission become a part of life?

That’s something Isabelle wants to know, wants to experience, but is her new man up for the job? She has very definite fantasies, a particular flavour of strange that hits her spot. Only time will tell if their next daring interlude will pave the way for so much more than a brief encounter.

Harlem Dae 4First Reader Reviews

“Gabriel is one tough Dom and he is going to make sure she submits to him and him alone – Oh I can’t wait for the next one!!!”

“Lily Harlem and Natalie Dae are a fearsome duo. When you get these two ladies writing together you know it’s going to be great.”

Also on the shelves all good ebook retailers –

All Romance eBooks

Amazon

Amazon UK

More about Harlem Dae and their BDSM work can be found on the Harlem Dae website .

 

The 6th Instalment of Demon Interrupted: A Lakeland Witches Story

Demon Interrupted Image by KevI’m very happy to offer the sixth instalment of  Demon Interrupted, a new story from the Elemental Coven that will be unfolding in its entirety right here on A Hopeful Romantic over the next few months.

The Lakeland Heatwave Trilogy left so many stories untold and so many fun places in the lives of the Elemental Coven yet to be explored, that a serial seemed like the ideal way to share more of the coven’s adventure. With a coven that specialises in sex magic, it’s not only exciting to revisit my witches at Elemental Cottage, but it’s sizzling hot. Here are the links to the previous episodes in case you missed them:

 

Chapter 1 Demon Interrupted: Perchance to Dream.

Chapter 2 Demon Interrupted: A Chat with a Demon

Chapter 3 Demon Interrupted: Enter the Shadows

Chapter 4 Demon Interrupted: Dark Chrysalis

Chapter 5 Demon Interrupted: The Empty Spaces in Between

Enjoy Chapter Six, and thanks for joining the fun with this Work in Progress.  If you want to know more about the Elemental Coven’s sexy adventures, check out the Lakeland Heatwave Trilogy: Body Temperature and RisingRiding the Ether and Elemental Fire. Enjoy!

Lakeland heatwave banner1

Chapter 6 Demon Interrupted

Beneath the Weight of Shadow

‘I will go after the shadow and the ghost.’ Anderson helped Cassandra to her feet and moved to cut a door in the circle.

‘Not by yourself,’ Tara ordered. ‘We don’t know what this thing is. And Cassandra, you stay here,’ she called as the succubus joined him. ‘We need someone non-corporeal. Take Fiori.’

Anderson nodded his agreement, paused only long enough to brush a quick kiss across Cassandra’s lips then he and Fiori vanished from the circle.

‘Lucia? What’s going on,’ Tara called out as she scrambled to where Cassandra already knelt next to Ferris with his head in her lap.

‘He’s freezing, Cassandra said, pulling his robe over him and then reaching for a blanket at the foot of the sleeping pallet. She looked up at the coven leader as the others gathered around. ‘He’s not responding at all.’

‘Is he in the Ether,’ Tim asked. ‘Is that possible?’

The succubus shook her head. ‘He has no skills in the Ether, and no ability to go there unconsciously that I know of.’

Skye, who was trained in healing arts and had some skills in first aid, moved to his side and laid her fingers against his throat. ‘His pulse is faint, thready. Whatever that was –’ she nodded toward the cave entrance ‘– it came from inside him. Almost like it belonged there.’

‘Or like it didn’t,’ Tim said.

‘Goddamn it, Lucia, I need you,’ Tara yelled into the empty air, ‘Where’s the damned demon when you want her?’

‘She’s not known for being cooperative,’ Kennet said. He took a bottle of water from one of the rucksacks and handed it to Alice, who hunched trembling in the corner. ‘What happened?’ He sat next to her and pulled a Mackenzie tartan around her shoulders.

‘At first, I thought it was just a shadow,’ Alice said. She took a sip of water and wiped her eyes with a hand that was still none too steady. ‘It was like all of a sudden Ferris got … bigger … all over, and I don’t know why I didn’t think about it. I don’t know why it didn’t seem strange. It was so intense, so solid, nothing at all like shadow. And then when I … when I came, I knew. I could tell that whatever it was, it had taken with it Ferris’s essence.’ She shivered. ‘I’m sorry I panicked.’

‘You have nothing to be sorry for,’ Kennet said. ‘You had good cause.’

‘Cassandra, do you know anything about this? Has anything like this ever happened before,’ Tara asked. ‘You’ve known Ferris most of your life.’

She shook her head. ‘I knew Ferris possessed some magic, but honestly, until we came here, I’d never seen him use any of it. He was always there, but until we came here, I never really noticed him. Until we came here, he was … I don’t know. He was always there when I needed him, but it was almost like he didn’t exist the rest of the time.’

‘Lucia!’ Tara shouted again. ‘Where the hell are you?’ She turned her attention to her man. ‘What is it, Kennet? What’s wrong? I can see it on your face.’

‘Well –’ he moved away from Alice and laid a hand against Ferris’s chest ‘—the way that shadow left him, it reminds me of when Lucia possessed me, the way she left my body, at least when I was aware of her leaving.’

‘But you never lost consciousness when she left you, did you?’ Tara asked. ‘ I never have. Sometimes I don’t even feel it when she leaves, though I usually feel it when she comes back home.’

‘And speaking of the devil,’ Tim said. ‘It’s not like Lucia to stay away when she’s called. She never likes to miss a good party. How long can she be away from you, Tara, before … you know?’

‘Before I die again? I don’t think there’s a sell-by date, Tim. There’s some kind of connection inside whether she’s with me or not. I feel her absence, but not in quite the same way Kennet did, and certainly she never rendered me unconscious when she left, though I reckon she could if she were inclined.’

‘Wait a minute –’ Marie said, ‘– If you’re saying that Ferris is possessed by some kind of demon, we could have just sent Anderson and Fiori into danger.’

Just then Ferris’s body jerked hard, his back arched, and he began to convulse.

*****

It was good that the moon was full. It made following the shadow and the ghost much easier. Anderson felt no threat from either of them. He did not know what the shadow was, though it certainly seemed to him that the thing might have been in possession of Ferris’s body. Because there was much they did not understand of the situation, he preferred as many of the odds in his favour as possible.

‘The shadow –’ Fiori’s disembodied voice filled Anderson’s ear, or what would have been his ear had he had form other than that of thought and will ‘– he was with Ferris the last time he made love to me.’

Anderson glanced at her and continued following the disturbance in the air through which the strange couple had passed. ‘Did you speak to Ferris of this?’

‘At the time I thought I only imagined it. I was groggy from a bad dream and he comforted me. I didn’t feel threatened. It felt only as though Ferris were suddenly a much larger man, different, but still Ferris. I felt full of him, full of his presence. The space around me felt full of his presence. I don’t know, we all have secrets, and none of us really knows Ferris that well.’

‘My dear Fiori, even Cassandra does not know Ferris well, and though it seems that Lucia has released him of his responsibilities to her, he does not wish to know his past. I think that rather odd. It seems to me …’ Anderson’s words died in the throat he did not at this moment have, and he halted their progress with nothing more than an act of will. At the edge of the tarn that glowed silver-black in the moonlight, the strange ghost with the noose around her neck threw herself into the arms of the shadow.

‘I found you. Thank goddess I found you. Oh Ferris, I was so worried. I thought I’d done something wrong. I thought that when you learned what … what I’d done, you were angry and you left.’

‘I didn’t leave you. I swear I didn’t.’ The shadow spoke in a voice that was quite recognisable as Ferris’s. With careful hands, he removed the noose from around her neck and gave it an angry toss. Anderson could see the angry ligature marks on the woman’s delicate throat, and the curse that Fiori uttered told him so did she. ‘I don’t know what happened,’ the shadow said, ‘but I promise I didn’t leave you intentionally.’

‘Ferris?’ Anderson spoke softly, not wanting to startle the couple, and eased himself into a form that was fully visible, but had no substance. He was not yet certain if, indeed, the dark entity was Ferris. But the shadow turned to face him, and he could see the likeness of a man broad of shoulder and clearly several inches taller that Anderson, who was, by no means, a small man.

The shadow, who still held the woman in his arms looked up at Anderson and nodded. ‘I’m sorry.’ His voice was soft, unobtrusive, as Ferris’s voice always was. ‘I don’t know what happened.’

Anderson took a cautious step forward and Fiori followed, her eyes locked on the woman. ‘You are aware that you have left your flesh unattended in the dream cave?’ Anderson asked.

‘So it would appear.’ Ferris looked down at the large hand that was not resting on the woman’s shoulder and released a long breath of which Anderson was fairly certain he had no need in his present form. ‘I … don’t know what happened,’ he repeated. Then he glanced from Anderson to Fiori and back again. ‘Lucia? Is she in the cave?’

‘She was not present when we left,’ Anderson said, ‘But it must be said that we did not linger to take attendance.’

‘Perhaps you might introduce us to your friend.’ Fiori took another step forward, her eyes on the ghost.

‘This is Elaine.’ Ferris did not loosen his hold on her. ‘Elaine these are my friends from the Elemental Coven, Fiori and Anderson.’

‘They’re both … dead,’ the woman said, catching her breath as though the realisation shocked her.

‘As are you, my dear woman,’ Anderson replied. ‘However, Ferris is not, and I cannot think it is healthy for his flesh to have him too long absent from it, so I would humbly request that we all return to the cave as quickly as we may.’ Almost before he finished speaking, the two vanished, and he and Fiori followed suit.

*****

Another image from KevAlice let out a little squeal and crab-walked backward as the shadow-man, who had left Ferris’s body in such a hurry, materialised in the cave with the ghost of a young woman in his arms. Instantly Ferris’s physical body calmed on the floor of the cave.

‘What the fuck?’ Tim said, glancing from the couple to Ferris on the floor and back again. Then Anderson and Fiori materialised next to them.

‘This is Elaine. I am told she is a friend of Ferris’s.’ Anderson spoke as calmly as if he were making introductions at a dinner party. For an instant no one in the cave moved. All eyes were on the couple. Skye still knelt next to Ferris’s body with her hand resting against his throat and Tara and Cassandra knelt next to her. Tim and Marie and Kennet sat near Alice.

With a sharp catch of his breath, the shadow-man, who seemed much more man than shadow now, eased forward and stared down at the flesh that had only recently housed him. He did nothing but stare. The ghost, Elaine, did the same. But hers was a more fearful countenance, and Anderson thought it strange that she held no such fear for the shadow-man as she did for the unpretentious fleshly man now unconscious on the floor of the cave.

‘There’s still no sign of Lucia.’ Marie spoke to Anderson and Fiori.

Kennet growled. ‘Not much nightlife in Keswick on a Wednesday night. I suppose she could have gone to Penrith … or Birmingham.’ He shrugged. ‘Hell she could have gone to Bangkok for all I know.’

‘I’ve never heard of a demon clubbing,’ Marie said. ‘I can’t think it would be much fun without a body.’

‘I don’t know what she gets up to when she’s not at home,’ Tara said. ‘She doesn’t tell me and I don’t ask, but damn it, I hate it when she ignores me, and I know that’s what she’s doing.’

‘I fear it’s me she’s ignoring,’ the shadow-man said. ‘And I can’t say that I long much for her company either, but under the circumstances, I suppose it would be good to know what’s going on.’ He didn’t sound very convinced of it.

‘Are you some kind of demon?’ Tim asked. A ripple of tension passed through the room. Tim had a reputation for being blunt and saying what was on his mind, but the shadow-man did not seem offended. Instead he stood contemplating the idea. And the shape of him was beautiful, Anderson thought, much more like a god than a man, fit to grace the temple of Apollo, fit to kindle the lust of any libido. And yet in the shadow there was no flesh.

‘I can’t truthfully say,’ he replied to Tim, ‘As far as I know, I’m Ferris Ryder, and that –’ he nodded to the body on the ground ‘—is also Ferris Ryder, though I have no idea how that can be. I think that perhaps Elaine –’

Tara raised a hand to silence him. Carefully she came to her feet and moved toward Elaine, who stood just barely inside the entrance of the cave now and seemed to be inching slowly in that direction as the conversation unfolded. ‘Elaine –’ Tara’s voice was only slightly more than a whisper ‘—how is it that you suddenly wear the flesh?’

Instantly all eyes were on the woman, and there was a collective intake of breath, for she was, indeed, in the flesh. A fact that surprised even her.

‘Is it because of you?’ Tara looked up at the Shadow-man, who shook his head.

‘Apparently I can choose to be … corporeal if I want,’ Elaine replied. ‘Though in all honesty, I have no memory of even being a ghost until I met Ferris, who was wearing the flesh of Patrick last night.

‘Who the hell is Patrick,’ Tim asked.

‘He is Patrick,’ she nodded to Ferris’s body. ‘And how he now lives but is not Patrick, I do not know. I killed him myself. Of that I’m certain.’

A harsh choking sound drown out the coven’s murmured response to Elaine’s confession, and all eyes were once again on Ferris’ body, which went rigid, then gasped a desperate breath, and it was as though by doing so, he rendered the shadow-man little more than a wisp of dark smoke, which swirled in the air, then vanished into Ferris’s corporeal chest.

Elaine let out a little cry and her knees gave just as Anderson caught her against his chest.

On the cave floor, Ferris spasmed twice then sat up and looked around the chamber. Cassandra knelt next to him and handed him a bottle of water. He drank deeply and coughed.

For a long moment the only sound in the cave was his effort to catch his breath.

‘Ferris?’ Skye said, at last. ‘Are you back with us?’

He nodded, then his gaze settled on Elaine and held, but he did not speak. He only stared at the ghost in the flesh.

When the silence had stretched beyond the point of uncomfortable, Tara laid a hand on Ferris’s forearm and spoke, ‘How much of what just happened do you remember?’

castlerigg_Stone_Circle1He started to speak, then cleared his throat as though his voice had rusted from disuse. ‘Everything. I remember everything.’ With ease that belied what he had just endured, he stood, holding the blanket to him to fight off the residual chill from his unconscious state, and moved slowly toward Elaine, reaching out his hand.

When she cautiously moved to his side, he spoke, still not taking his eyes off her. ‘At least I remember everything since my arrival in Cumbria a few hours ago.’ He looked back at Tara. ‘Before that …’

‘Before that what,’ Tara prompted.

He released a slow breath that echoed in the chamber like a wind. ‘Before that there are … blank spots.’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
© 2014 K D Grace
The Romance Reviews

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