#BookBlitz #Giveaway – NO WHITE KNIGHT by Nicole Snow

No White Knight
Nicole Snow
Publication date: April 30th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Handsome devil. Hate-worthy. Walking scandal.

I’m catching one feeling with him and it’s got teeth…

If I was a bird, I know who I’d paint white.

Holt Silverton.

The cocky dolt who swaggered up thinking he’d buy my ranch out from under me.

I know his reputation—those stormy eyes and chiseled looks ruined half this town.

Spare me the pick up lines and pretty words.

I’d rather chew nails than get roped up in anything with him.

I ain’t selling off my home, my inheritance, or my horses.

Not even if I desperately need the cash when trouble comes calling.

But there are two things I didn’t count on.

Holt’s as stubborn as a bull.

He’s also hiding a rough and tumble country boy behind that big city suit.

Everything flips upside down the day he says he’ll help save my land.

Too easy.

Because I can’t let anybody uncover the awful secret on my property.

Not even gorgeous stallions turning I-hate-you into what-are-we-doing.

He’s no white knight.

The way Holt kisses is a warning…

Nothing will ever be the same after this dark knight rocks my world.

From Wall Street Journal bestselling author Nicole Snow – a rogue of a man plays for keeps when he collides with a determined small-town firecracker. A bantery enemies to lovers thriller. Full-length standalone romance novel with all the Hell Yeah Happily Ever Afters.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

This girl hits below the belt.

Literally.

That’s one area, though, where I’m never insecure. I’m actually grinning.

There’s a fire in her, and frankly, I respect her more for calling me the douchebag I am for coming out here and sizing up her land without even a how-do-you-do?

“Don’t even try it,” I say. “I grew up around here. I know how to handle horses.”

“I hope you mean riding. Wouldn’t know it just looking at you.” Another once-over, like my suit’s some kind of scarlet letter branding me an outsider. “You look like New York. Tell you what—you ever want your country edge back, I’ll break you in until you’re raw around the edges and leave you begging.”

I arch both brows. “Sweetheart, I don’t think you meant that to come out the way it did,” I say, biting back a bigger grin.

Libby makes a disgusted huff, rolling her eyes so hard they go white.

“Keep it in your pants, cowboy.”

“Again,” I point out, “you seem to be putting a whole lot of thought into what’s in my trousers. You been missing me, Libby? Had a little crush I never knew about and now we’re all grown up and you want to play?”

I step closer to her.

I can’t help it.

Women look at me like I’m dinner. Sure, they hear the stories.

I’m bad news, but the kind of bad news you want to hear to learn a few dirty tricks.

Everybody wants a ride.

Nobody ever tries to buck me off.

Not like Libby.

And that just makes me want to get under her skin and live there. I smile slowly, leaning down toward her, close enough to purr in her ear.

“You want to play house,” I say, “you gotta call me Daddy.”

Her eyes go wider than the moon.

She makes a strangled sound in the back of her throat.

That hot-pink flush in her cheeks turns brilliant red, and there’s no mistaking the fury.

Her mouth thins to a tight line.

The only warning I get is Sierra shouting.

“Oh, no, Libby, don’t—

Too late. Libby plants her hands square on my chest and pushes me.

I mean, hell.

It’s a miracle she catches me off kilter, considering she barely comes up to my collar.

But I’m thinking less about being impressed and more about the sky spinning and the world whirling by as I topple backward.

My ass lands hard in a puff of yellow dust that flies up and spills back down, coating my freshly dry-cleaned black suit.


Author Bio:

Nicole Snow is a Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author. She found her love of writing by hashing out love scenes on lunch breaks and plotting her great escape from boardrooms. Her work roared onto the indie romance scene in 2014 with her Grizzlies MC series.

Since then Snow aims for the very best in growly, heart-of-gold alpha heroes, unbelievable suspense, and swoon storms aplenty. With over a million books sold, she lives for the joy of making two people fight with every bit of their soul for a Happily Ever After.

Current fan favorites include her Enguard Protectors series, accidental love novels, plus long beloved MC romance thrillers like the Grizzlies and Deadly Pistols.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Bookbub

 

GIVEAWAY!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1

 

#CoverReveal #Giveaway – TONY by J.A. Huss

Tony
J.A. Huss
(Bossy Brothers, #6)
Publication date: May 12th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Belinda Baker and I were not made for each other.

We are not soul mates, or lovers, or even frenemies.

She is the one who needed to get away.

What we had together wasn’t blind love, it was sick rage.

We were a match made in hell, it was hate at first sight, and when she walked away from me and never looked back—it was a relief.

It was bliss.

So why did I travel two thousand miles so I could be near her?

Why can’t I stop thinking about this girl I never want to see again?

Why. Am I. Here?

And what do I have to do to make her disappear for good?

Bossy Brothers: Tony features two girls falling for the wrong men and two men falling for the right girls. A family of tatted up brothers and a town filled with secrets and danger. A story of earned chances and first dates. Of coming to terms with the past and finding a way into the future. It is book six in the Bossy Brothers series and should be read after book five, Bossy Brothers: Alonzo.

Add to Goodreads

READ ENTIRE SERIES FREE IN KINDLE UNLIMITED!

 

Author Bio:

JA Huss is the New York Times Bestselling author of 321 and has been on the USA Today Bestseller’s list 21 times in the past five years. She writes characters with heart, plots with twists, and perfect endings.

Her new sexy sci-fi romance and paranormal romance pen name is KC Cross and she writes novels and teleplays collaboratively with actor and screenwriter, Johnathan McClain.

Her books have sold millions of copies all over the world, the audio version of her semi-autobiographical book, Eighteen, was nominated for a Voice Arts Award and an Audie Award in 2016 and 2017 respectively. Her audiobook, Mr. Perfect, was nominated for a Voice Arts Award in 2017. Her audiobook, Taking Turns, was nominated for an Audie Award in 2018. Five of her book were optioned for a TV series by MGM television in 2018. And her book, Total Exposure, was nominated for a RITA Award in 2019.

She lives on a ranch in Central Colorado with her family.

Website / Facebook Page / FB Fan Group / Twitter / Instagram / Bookbub / Amazon / Audible / Kobo / Nook / JA Huss Secret Stuff Alert

 

GIVEAWAY!
$25 GIFT CARD
a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1

 

#BookBlitz #Giveaway – INFINITE US by Eden Butler

Infinite Us
Eden Butler
Publication date: April 28th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Love is timeless…

Nash Nation loves zeroes and ones, over-sized monitors and late office hours. He’s too busy taking over the world to make time for relationships—that is, until his new neighbor Willow O’Bryant barges into his life, and now Nash can’t shake the feeling that this isn’t the first time she’s interrupted his world.

Then, the dreams start. And in the dreams—memories.

Memories of a girl named Sookie who couldn’t count on love or friendship, never mind forever. Memories of a library and a boy called Isaac and secrets made in private that destroyed his world.

The memories seem real, but who do they belong to?

When Nash and Willow discover the truth, life as they know it unravels.

The bridge between this life and the next is shored up by blood and bone and memory. Sometimes, that bridge leads to the place we’ve always wanted to be.

NOTE: This is a completely revamped re-release version of this title with new characters and is a standalone with a HEA

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

“This thing we got… I told you, it won’t be easy.”

“Nothing good is ever easy, Isaac.”

There was a pause as unasked questions hovered around us. I considered what life would be like with Isaac, that no matter how committed we might be to our relationship, we could not exist in a vacuum. Struggles would follow us wherever we went, and would spill out to our families, our loved ones, our friends.

He waited. Although Isaac was the one who moved with caution, the one who refused to assume that the easy road would be ours to travel, he waited for me to come to a decision. He wanted me to say yes, but wouldn’t ask the question. He would not lead me anywhere, but would be waiting for me when I arrived—if I didn’t turn back.

“Isaac?” He nodded again and brought me closer. His cheeks were wide, his features strong and he closed his eyes, as though he relished the feel of my fingertips over his face. “Will you love me? No matter what happens?”

Isaac pulled me around him, holding me against his large body, his hand around my waist. His voice was quiet, but filled with strength, with conviction. “Always.”

No one had touched me like Isaac. He had a way about him, something real and honest that was assured by his long, perfect fingers down my back and the slip of his tongue inside my mouth. There was no fear, not when those fingers gripped me tighter, when he slowly lowered my zipper and held my hand as I stepped out of my dress.

He watched me then, and even though a different Riley might have been shy, I liked the way his stare felt against my bare skin. It was me he wanted, only me; only I could sate his hunger, redeem that desperate look that had caught him in a silent pause.

Isaac still held my hand, arm extended with that hard, greedy gaze working over me. He made me feel needed, wanted, he made me feel necessary. And when he pulled my hand to rest it against his heart, I held my breath, waiting to hear what he thought, hoping he wanted me as much as I wanted him. “My sweet… my beautiful Riley.”

He stepped back, my fingers trailing away from his chest, and tugged off his shirt, dropping it to the floor, instantly forgotten. Isaac picked me up and carried me to the bed, divesting me of everything that kept me covered, and everything that kept him hidden from me.

I had never seen a naked man before. I’d never been naked with a man before. But there I lay on Isaac’s large bed covered by his long legs and muscular thighs, my small frame underneath him, open to him as he took control and showed me what it meant to be loved.

“You and me, Riley, there’s nothing but this. Nothing else but this, how we are right now.”

Isaac never spoke much of his feelings, the things that rocked his soul, the many worries that kept him up at night. Maybe he didn’t know how to say he loved me, but just then, with Isaac’s warm, solid body right against mine, skin to skin, touching me like no one ever had before, I decided words weren’t all that important.

“Nothing else, my love. Nothing else at all.”

 

Author Bio:

Eden Butler is a writer of contemporary, fantasy and romantic suspense novels and the nine-times great-granddaughter of an honest-to-God English pirate. This could explain her affinity for rule breaking and rum.

When she’s not writing or wondering about her possibly Jack Sparrowesque ancestor, Eden patiently waits for her Hogwarts letter, reads, and spends too much time in her garden perfecting her green thumb while waiting for the next New Orleans Saints Superbowl win.

She is currently living under teenage rule alongside her husband in southeast Louisiana.

Please send help.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Newsletter

 

GIVEAWAY!
$20 Amazon gift card + 5x ebook copies of Infinite Us
a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1

 

#CoverReveal – HASTY by Julia Kent

Hasty
Julia Kent
(Do-Over Series, #4)
Publication date: July 28th 2020
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Romance

AN ALL-NEW STANDALONE FROM NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR JULIA KENT

I never thought my perp walk would lead to true love.

Then again, I never thought I’d be arrested on RICO charges and hauled away in zip ties on camera for the world to see, minutes after closing the most amazing deal of my career.

And all of it in front of my biggest rival, billionaire wunderkind Ian McRory.

I am broke.

I am disgraced.

I am alone.

I am a sucker.

But the worst part? I have to go back to my hometown and live in my bedroom filled with relics from my childhood.

Lisa Frank never made me so mad before.

Just when I needed a rescue, I got one — in the form of help from my biggest rival.

He can’t bring back my money.

He certainly can’t bring back my reputation or my pride.

But there’s one thing he can bring back to me.

A sense of hope.

Maybe even love.

Ian sees something in me no one else does, and he’s relentless about making me see it, too. As we grow closer, I’m starting to see that while my entire life used to be a lie, the truth is staring me in the present — and it’s a truth I like very, very much, hot eyes and gorgeous smile and all.

But I have to be careful.

I can’t be too —

That’s right.

Hasty.

The final book in the USA Today bestselling Do-Over Series (Fluffy, Perky, Feisty), as Mallory’s sister, Hastings “Hasty” Monahan gets her turn at a happily ever after that starts off with an arrest.

Hers.

Goodreads / Amazon / iBooks / Kobo / Google Play

 

Author Bio:

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Julia Kent writes romantic comedy with an edge. From billionaires to BBWs to new adult rock stars, Julia finds a sensual, goofy joy in every contemporary romance she writes. Unlike Shannon from Shopping for a Billionaire, she did not meet her husband after dropping her phone in a men’s room toilet (and he isn’t a billionaire). She lives in New England with her husband and three sons in a household where the toilet seat is never, ever, down.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Newsletter / Bookbub / Amazon

 

XBTBanner1

 

#BookBlitz #Giveaway – THE RUN AROUND by Bernadette Franklin

The Run Around
Bernadette Franklin
Publication date: April 28th 2020
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Contemporary, Romance

Arranging a wedding for her brother and a five-time thoroughbride tests Hope’s skills and patience. She’d believed the vows would be the most dangerous part of the ceremony, but a baseball to the head during the photography session proves her wrong and lands her in the sights of her brother’s best friend, Fredrick.

He wants her to plan his wedding.

She wants to be his bride.

Diving into the treacherous world of wedding planning, Hope keeps her word and arranges the vows for the one man she believes she could love. He doesn’t know how much she cherishes him and his friendship.

What she doesn’t know lands her in the heart of a royal mess.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo / Google Play

EXCERPT:

A sensible woman would’ve been delighted to be her future sister-in-law’s maid of honor, as it implied cordial relationships or some sort of bullshit like that. I knew better.

I made an excellent scapegoat.

As the wedding party’s weakest link, everyone expected me to trip on my dress, maybe break an ankle along with my neck, or spill the entire wine fountain onto the floor. My brother claimed he loved me, but I believed he’d been the one to spread the rumor I was the world’s clumsiest woman.

When I secured my revenge, it would be sweet.

But first, I needed to survive my brother’s wedding without being responsible for a single hiccup. Playing to my brother’s misconceptions, I’d spent months tripping over nothing on purpose so I could transform myself into the image of traditional beauty and grace.

I’d even lost twenty pounds so my dress would fit.

The wedding would be a disaster, but I would emerge from the chaos smelling like roses, red wine, and garlic bread. Honestly, I doubted the wedding would make it to the reception.

Some weddings had bridezillas. We had a thoroughbride, and if she got it into her head to run, I wished my brother the best of luck catching her before she fled from the church. My proposal to have the wedding on a yacht, where my brother’s thoroughbride couldn’t escape, hadn’t earned me points with anyone.

The bride hated the ocean.

My brother was smart enough to catch onto my implication.

It wasn’t my fault Amy wasn’t exactly the most reliable woman in the world when it came to marriage. Once was a fluke. Twice was a trend. Five incidents of running from the wedding was evidence the thoroughbride would strike again, and my dear old brother would be saddled with the fifty thousand dollar bill, as he refused to believe Amy would run out on him.

Oh, no. Amy would never run out on him.


Author Bio:

Bernadette Franklin is a figment of imagination owned and operated by two cats, a few plants, and a human.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Instagram / Amazon / Newsletter

 

GIVEAWAY!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1

 

#CoverReveal #Giveaway – THE DIVORCE ATTORNEY by Melanie Munton

The Divorce Attorney
Melanie Munton
Publication date: May 26th 2020
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Contemporary, Romance

What are you supposed to do when your insanely hot divorce attorney leans over after you’ve signed your divorce papers and seductively whispers in your ear, “Give me a call if you want to know how it feels to be handled by a real man since you were clearly too much woman for him,” before sliding his business card over and walking out the door?

I mean, what do you do with that?

Sure, I’m tempted. I just lost a hundred and eighty pounds of stupid, cheating man. I deserve to treat myself.

The thing is, I think he might be too much man for me.

After all, he’s fifteen years my senior, though he doesn’t look it.

But the urge to learn what this seasoned pro could teach me proves irresistible.

And as it turns out, he’s a pro at a lot of things…like destroying people’s lives.

Goodreads / Amazon / iBooks / Kobo

Author Bio:

Traveler. Reader. Beach-goer. St. Louis Cardinals fan. Pasta-obsessed. North Carolina resident. Sarcastic. Bit of a nerd.

Author of the Cruz Brothers, Possession and Politics, and Timid Souls series, Melanie loves all things romance, comedies and suspense in particular because it’s boring to only stick to one sub-genre! From light-hearted comedies to sexy thrillers, she likes to mix it up, but loves her some strong alpha males and sassy heroines.

Go visit Melanie’s website and sign up for her newsletter to stay updated on release dates, teasers, and other details for all of her projects!

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Bookbub

a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1

#CoverReveal – BRUTUAL BEAST by Lynn Burke

Brutal Beast
Lynn Burke
(Vicious Vipers MC, #5)
Publication date: May 21st 2020
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

I’m a no-filter, use fists first kind of man who’s suspicious of everyone and everything. As the president of the Vicious Vipers MC, it’s my duty to protect my brothers, and I take pleasure in doing so.

When a sassy woman who heats my blood moves in next door, I tell myself I don’t want the baggage she brings, even if he is a respectful kid who weasels his way into my heart. She’s jaded. A stubborn, lying wildcat I can’t resist, and I’m determined to find the truth of her identity and make her mine.

But I’ve got secrets of my own, long buried in the woods of Maine, that unearthed would define me as the brutal beast she fears me to be.

It’s in my nature to protect them from their past—even if mine is brought to light, destroying any hope for our future.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

 

Author Bio:

Lynn Burke is a full time mother, voracious gardener, and scribbler of spicy romance stories. A country bumpkin turned Bay Stater, she enjoys her chowdah and Dunkin Donuts when not trying to escape the reality of city life.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter

 

XBTBanner1

 

#CoverReveal – PRETTY NIGHTMARE by J.A. Huss

Pretty Nightmare
J.A. Huss
(Creeping Beautiful #2)
Publication date: May 26th 2020
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

INDIE

I have them all now. Just the way I want them.

McKay, the one who loves me deepest.

Adam, the one who protects me fiercely.

Donovan, the one who tells the truth.

They are my friends, they are my lovers, they are my world.

And Maggie belongs to all of us—no matter who her father is.

This is the family I’ve always wanted.

This is the family I deserve.

And I will do whatever it takes to keep them.

McKAY

I have a secret that could ruin everything.

But I’m not keeping that secret to hurt her.

Nathan St. James needed to go.

ADAM

I made plan that could ruin everything.

But I did it to save us in the end.

The Company needed to come back.

DONOVAN

I told a lie that could ruin everything.

But I didn’t tell the lie to them—I told it to myself.

Carter is closer than we think.

There is something truly wrong at Boucher House on the Old Pearl River.

Some hidden evil lurking deep inside the woods.

Nothing about their blissful life is what it seems.

Because just when they think they have it all—he shows up to take it back.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

 

Author Bio:

JA Huss is the New York Times Bestselling author of 321 and has been on the USA Today Bestseller’s list 21 times in the past five years. She writes characters with heart, plots with twists, and perfect endings.

Her new sexy sci-fi romance and paranormal romance pen name is KC Cross and she writes novels and teleplays collaboratively with actor and screenwriter, Johnathan McClain.

Her books have sold millions of copies all over the world, the audio version of her semi-autobiographical book, Eighteen, was nominated for a Voice Arts Award and an Audie Award in 2016 and 2017 respectively. Her audiobook, Mr. Perfect, was nominated for a Voice Arts Award in 2017. Her audiobook, Taking Turns, was nominated for an Audie Award in 2018. Five of her book were optioned for a TV series by MGM television in 2018. And her book, Total Exposure, was nominated for a RITA Award in 2019.

She lives on a ranch in Central Colorado with her family.

Facebook Page / Facebook Group / Twitter / Instagram / Bookbub / Amazon

 

GIVEAWAY!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1

 

#BookBlitz #Giveaway – GRINDED by Heather Slade

Grinded
Heather Slade
(The Invincibles, #3)
Publication date: April 27th 2020
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

When the odds are against them, they fight for each other.

First loves torn apart…

With a Tuscan backdrop of romance and innocence, sixteen-year-olds Miles “Grinder” Stone and Pia Deltetto learn of love and loss. After a whirlwind romance, they return to their separate lives with a hope of reconnecting someday.

Broken and battered…

Severely wounded in battle, Grinder refuses Pia’s sympathy and pity. However, when he realizes the true danger Pia is in, Grinder will do anything to save the only woman he’s ever loved. With everything on the line, she’s forced to trust himr with her estate, her life, and her heart. But has too much time passed to bring to shattered souls back together where they belong?

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

Four hours later, I raced out of customs at the Florence airport and into Pia’s waiting arms. My heart raced as I touched her warm, opened her lips with my tongue, and the rest of the world went silent. There were no more birds singing, no sounds of the traffic that surrounded us. Even the wind stilled as I focused solely on the way her body shuddered as I brushed soft kisses from her mouth, down her neck, to the smattering of freckles on her bare shoulder.

“Tell me there’s somewhere we can be alone.”

“Sì,” she said, leading me outside to where a car sat waiting. “Do you want to know where we’re going?”

I shook my head. “I don’t care.”

When the driver opened the back door and we got in, I pulled her into my arms and devoured her mouth like a starving man. We spent the next hour with our lips fused together in one long kiss.

The driver pulled up to what looked like a resort. I got out and waited for Pia to put her hand in mine. I pulled her close and kissed her again. “I can’t get enough of you.”

“Come,” she said as I grabbed our bags from the driver and followed her down a walkway to a villa that looked like a miniature of the one at Valentini.

Once inside, she put her hands on the hem of my shirt; I grabbed the back and pulled it over my head.

Santa Madre di Dio.” She rested her hand on my bare torso, leaned up, and kissed me.

“Pia,” I breathed. “If you want me to stop…tell me now.”

She wound her fingers in my hair and pulled me closer. My blood throbbed, and my heart beat frantically in my chest. All at once, I felt like we were melting into each other, our two bodies dissolving into one.

She reached up and slid her dress off her shoulders. It floated to the wood floor, landing in a heap at our feet and leaving her naked but for her pale pink knickers.

“Touch me,” she demanded, bringing my hand to her breast. I couldn’t resist a taste. My mouth covered her nipple, and we both groaned. Her skin tasted like the sweetest honey; I wanted to lick her everywhere.


Author Bio:

I write stories set in places I love with characters I’d be happy to call friends. The women in my books are self-confident, successful, and strong, with wills of their own, and hearts as big as the Colorado sky. And the men are sublimely sexy, seductive alphas who rise to the challenge of capturing the sweet soul of a woman whose heart they’ll hold in the palm of their hand forever.

I’m an Amazon best-selling author, and a PAN member of Romance Writers of America. I speak, teach, blog, am an executive sommelier, and all-around entrepreneur.

I grew up an East Coast girl, and then spent half my life on the West Coast. Now my husband, our two boys, and I happily call Colorado home.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Newsletter

 

GIVEAWAY!
$25 Amazon gift card
a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1

 

#BookBlitz #Giveaway – PERFECTION by Kitty Thomas

Perfection
Kitty Thomas
Publication date: April 8th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Dark Romance, Romance

Everyone thought I was married to the perfect man. But if Conall Walsh were perfect, I wouldn’t have killed him.

I thought I got away with it until I received an anonymous note at the ballet company I dance for:

You were a very bad girl. If you don’t want me to report what I know about last night, meet me at the old opera house after rehearsal. I will tell you the price of my silence when you arrive. If you speak of this or bring anyone with you… no deal.

But his price isn’t money. It’s me.

THIS IS A STANDALONE contemporary dark romance.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo / Google Play

EXCERPT:

SCENE ONE:

There’s a crackling sound and then a booming male voice magnified over a speaker.

“I neither need nor want your money, Ms. Lane” It’s a smooth, rich baritone. But I can’t tell if the voice belongs to someone old or young. And I don’t recognize it.

“Do you know he beat me? He threatened to kill me. What was I supposed to do? He practically owned this city. Do you know how much power he had? What other choice did I have?” I shout into the mostly empty theater.

“Do you know how much power I have?” he counters.

Obviously a lot if he can get into this building and have electricity running in it. “I don’t deserve prison,” I say.

“Murder is a serious crime.” His tone is similar to the one you’d hear in the principal’s office after being caught vandalizing a dumpster behind the school.

“Please…” I feel the hysteria bubbling over as my gaze continues to dart around the cavernous theater, trying to find where he’s hiding, what perch he observes me from. “Please…” I say again… “You said you’d tell me your price. How much? Please. I’ll pay you anything.”

“No, Ms. Lane. Not money. I have plenty of that. The price of my silence is your obedience.”

The stillness that follows this announcement is so complete you could hear a pin drop on the black dance tarp. What the hell does that mean?

“Empty out your dance bag in the center of the stage and spread out all the contents,” he says.

I freeze at that. There’s a gun in my dance bag. I’m not that stupid, that I’d just go meet some mysterious blackmailer without going home to get a weapon first. I mean, come on.

“I want to remind you that we aren’t in a 1940’s noir film. I have a phone on me at all times, and I will use it to report you if you hesitate again.”

I take a deep breath. My hands are visibly shaking as I empty out the dance bag, arranging the contents, carefully concealing the gun in a dance sweater.

“What are you hiding from me?” the voice asks again.

I look around the otherwise empty theater, trying desperately to find the source of that voice.

“N-nothing!”

“Do you want to go to prison, Cassia?”

His use of my first name startles me. It feels too familiar in spite of everything.

The voice continues. “No. Lies. I want to see what you’re hiding.”

I don’t know how I thought I would get away with this. Did I think he’d just show up and confront me in some straight forward face-to-face way? Did I think he’d let me see him? Did I think I’d have a clear shot, and he’d just stand politely still while I put a bullet in him?

What the hell was I thinking?

“Last chance to save yourself,” he says, his patience running out.

I feel like I’ll hyperventilate as I unwrap the gun from the sweater and lay it out on the brightly lit stage. I flinch and look around me as if he’ll somehow swoop down, materialize on top of me, and rip me apart for daring to try to defend myself.

He chuckles. “Were you planning to build a body count? Gotten a taste for it, have you?”

“N-no,” I stammer.

“No, Sir,” he corrects. “I expect a basic level of formality and etiquette when we’re in this space together.”

Everything inside me freezes at this. When we’re in this space together.

 

Author Bio:

KITTY THOMAS writes dark stories that play with power and have unconventional HEAs. She began publishing in early 2010 with her bestselling COMFORT FOOD and is considered one of the original authors of the dark romance subgenre.

To find out FIRST when a new book comes out, subscribe to Kitty’s New Release List: KITTYTHOMAS.COM

Website / Goodreads / Twitter / Book+Main Bites / Bookbub

 

GIVEAWAY!
5 surprise signed books AND a $100 Amazon gift card
a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1