Tag Archives: dark contemporary romance

New Dark Romance COMING SOON: Twenty-One by Clarissa Wild. [#Giveaway Included]

 

Title: Twenty-One (21)
Author: Clarissa Wild
Publication Date: October 7th, 2015
Genre: Dark Romance (18+)
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Synopsis

21 years
On her 21st birthday she’s taken. Collected by a rich family as an unpaid debt. Her body sold. Her mind his.
21 weeks
For 21 weeks she carried a burden no girl should ever have to carry. Now she loses her freedom to a man born to destroy her.
21 days
His name: Angel DeLuca. His mission: to break her in 21 days before she sees through his lies. But she won’t give up without a fight.
21 minutes
It takes only 21 minutes for their lives to be forever entwined.
21 seconds
21 seconds to spill. Time is running out.

Secrets ruin them … but not all truths are worth the price.

This is a STANDALONE Dark Romance novel. WARNING: contains explicit situations, dubious consent, graphic violence, drug abuse, and other disturbing content.

Exclusive preorder on: iBooks
Excerpt:
(Copyright 2015 Clarissa Wild. Unedited. Subject to change.)
Day 1
Sky
A
never-ending darkness shrouds me, the surrounding void like space, swallowing me whole. Eyes open or eyes shut, it doesn’t make a difference to the vast emptiness around me. It seeps into my bones like poison, clouding my mind from the memories that I had.
Where am I?
My body feels cold, and my limbs solid, like they’re not mine. I notice myself breathing, however. The only thing I hear is the steady, rhythmic beating of my heart. The only sound in this dark hole. Thud, thud … thud.
For a moment I doubt my own existence.
Who am I, even?
A drop of water falling onto a surface pulls me back into reality. I’m here, but how?
My fingers tighten and relax in an attempt to regain control. My muscles feel stiff, but slowly the sensation is returning to the tips of my fingers, giving me a small bit of hope that I might find out what happened to me.
With slow movements, I let my hand slide only a few inches, but it’s enough to determine that I’m lying on a concrete floor. My head begins to hurt and every passing second the pain increases. I move my fingers to my head and touch the back of my scalp. The searing pain stops me and tells me I’m wounded.
When I touch my face I gasp. There is a bag over my head with a hole near my mouth and nose through which I can breathe. For a second, I contemplate removing it, but then I realize they might be watching me.
A buzz moves through my body, bringing life back to my limbs. And even though I’m regaining my sense of touch, my vision is still impaired. However, my eyes feel fine as I touch them, so it must be the lack of light.
I push my elbows underneath me and lean up. A sudden queasiness overtakes me, causing me to buckle and heave. I puke on the floor beside me, which surprises me, because I hardly ever puke.
I tally up the sensations that I’m feeling. Nausea, loss of motor skills, buzzing nerves, botched memory … it all leads to one conclusion: I was drugged.
Stabilizing myself on the floor, I focus on regaining control over my body before moving again. This place is unfamiliar to me, and I dig into my mind to find clues as to how I ended up here. The pain that’s slowly creeping to the surface of my skin distracts me, but I still manage to catch a glimpse of a memory in the back of my mind.
Men with black masks and fire weapons dragging me out of a room. A cloth with a sharp odor pushed against my mouth. Drowsiness engulfing me. A big SUV, also black, doors sliding to the side. A blow to the back of my head. All lights went out.
My skin pricks with anxiety, and I shiver to shake off the fear. It doesn’t help, because I know deep down that there is more to come.
There is one question in my mind that can’t help but repeat itself. Why me?
This is the single question every victim of abduction asks.
Except, I already know the answer.
It was only a matter of time before they came for me.
My papa once told me that goodness always comes at a price. Now more than ever, do I realize the truth in his words. However, I don’t regret making the decision for even a second.
Now, I’m here in a darkness so deep it consumes me whole.
And still the light of rebellion sparks inside my heart, fueling a fire I haven’t felt before. An uncontrollable need to defy whoever is keeping me here.
But I will wait. Lying in the cold, harsh, emptiness of this space, I will await my captor’s arrival and take whatever he’s going to give me. Punishment. Pain. I’ll endure it all.
Because that’s what a good person does when they’ve made their choice.
They bear the burden of their choice, because it’s the only thing they can do.
***
I don’t know how many hours pass before a noise wakes me. I can’t remember when and how I fell asleep, but I must’ve been very tired from the ordeal. A metallic door is slid open, a crack of light splitting through the opening. The burlap bag over my head makes it difficult to see, but when I narrow my eyes and focus I can still determine where I am.
Only now do I see how small my cell really is.
The vast emptiness I thought would overwhelm me, turns out to be not much more than a bedroom-sized cell. A quick look at the walls reveals iron rings of all shapes and sizes, used to hook a chain around and snare whoever needs to be contained and subdued.
In other words; me.
Squinting, I watch as a man steps inside, and I focus solely on his presence. Even though the door is open, and freedom is luring me on the other side, I stay put and watch. No matter how much I’d try, I’d never be able to flee. Not like this, with my muscles weak and my body aching. There are probably a bunch of guards waiting outside, wondering whether I’m going to try anything.
So I won’t. I’ll sit right here on this cold, hard concrete, observing my captor as he walks into the room with a certain aloofness. His feet are bold, his body brawny, his face hiding behind a Guy Fawkes mask. If I weren’t so scared, I would’ve pondered why he chose that specific mask to conceal his identity, but now is not that time.
His footsteps sound more like sand scraping off a harsh surface as he circles
around me like a snake ready to attack its prey. The door is left open like a silent seducer, a tool to entice me to run. I look up at my captor, giving him a deadly stare, and even though I can’t see him, I know he can feel the determination in me.
I won’t let myself be tempted to flee like a wounded deer.
Not when I know that this is merely a distraction, like a lollypop being dangled in front of a child while the adult knows full well he’s never going to give it to the child, and the child knows he can never reach far enough to grasp it.
I refuse to be that child.
My captor walks some more, and then returns to the door to close it.
His experiment failed.
I control my emotions.
He doesn’t know who he’s up against.
In the darkness I hear him come closer, the only sound being his steady breath and soft steps. He’s still testing me. Seeing if I’ll give in to the fear. Alone with him, the predator, in a cage filled with blackness. But I’m not afraid of the dark.
My soul has already been tainted and defiled. Nothing he does can hurt me. I already went past the breaking point once … and I survived.
“Up.”
The sound of his voice suddenly breaking through the façade makes me take in a breath. It’s familiar and yet so unknown, the way he speaks to me with full authority, resoluteness resounding in every spoken letter, even if there are few.
I crawl up from the ground, slowly, steadily, maintaining my posture. My aching back and pounding head won’t stop me from attempting to keep my dignity as I stand up straight and stare ahead.
My captor’s steps are everywhere, resounding in the darkness like echoes that disappear into the night. He’s confusing me, and I try not to concentrate on the sound, but on my own heartbeat instead.
Suddenly, he’s right in front of me, and the air is sucked out of my lungs. I struggle not to let my breath come out in short gasps, but I won’t let his tactics work on me.
His breathing sounds like that of a bull, short and loud, as if he’s readying for charge.
But he doesn’t move. He just stands there, gazing at me.
“Do you know where you are?” he asks with a low, gruff voice that brings goose bumps to my body.
I compose myself before I answer. “No.”
“Good.”
I can hear a faint smile behind that word, but the second my eyebrows move, he puts his hands on my chest and shoves me. I fall down backwards on the hard floor, bruising my groin.
After a while, he says. “Do you know why you’re here?”
I don’t answer. I refuse to. Why would I? He is only here to intimidate and hurt me. There’s no benefit for me in answering his questions. As a matter of fact, I think he owes me some answers instead.
“Why am I here?” I ask.
He’s silent for a few seconds, and then a smug laugh is dulled by the mask.
“Bold. I like that.”
“Who are you?” I ask, putting emphasis on every word as if they’re the last that’ll come from my mouth.
He muffles another laugh. “Who am I? I am the man who will break you.”
I shake my head, still lying on the floor as if I’m taunting him. Maybe I am. I want him to speak, and for that to happen, I have to be the one asking the questions, not the other way around.
“Where am I?”
“Where you belong,” he growls, and then he takes a step forward, grabs my arm, and pulls me up from the floor.
“Why—”
Smack. His hand hits my cheek, silencing me.
“You do not talk unless spoken to.”
My head is still to the right, as I refuse to look at him. I will not bow to his violence. If he hits me, my body will remain rigid, unmoving. Not an inch of pain will exude from me.
“You may be wondering why you’re here, but you’re forgetting the most important question. What have you done to be here?”
My lip quivers, so I force it to stop. I can’t show weakness. Not now, not ever.
He grabs my chin. “You don’t seem to remember, so let me refresh your memory,” he says. “You stole something. It’s time to give it back. You have twenty-one days to come up with an answer.” He pulls me closer with a pinch. “Lie and I’ll know. Do you understand?”
I nod while blankly staring at his mask. If I’m to obey to survive, I’ll do just that, but no one can take away my pride.
He let’s go of my chin and pushes me away. “It’s time for you to pay back what you owe.”
Fear ripples through my veins. “Pay what back?” I say, taking a step forward.
He shoves me so hard my back hits the wall and the air is ripped from my chest. I sink to my knees against it.
“Don’t think I will go easy on you. Just because I know about you, doesn’t mean I won’t rip you apart if you don’t tell me the truth.”
“What truth?” I gasp. “What do you know about me?”
He turns around, but waits, standing still in the darkness with only the sound of ragged breaths filling the room.
“You tell me,” he says, his voice softer than before, almost as if he himself doesn’t know the reason.
Frowning, I look up at him, and for some reason the way he cracks his knuckles feels so familiar.
But then the feeling immediately disappears as he starts walking toward the door.
“Wait, you haven’t told me why I’m here yet. How am I supposed to know what to tell you?”
I can hear him knock on the door. Then there’s a pause. “Oh … you’ll now soon enough.”
The forewarning brings chills to my skin.
The door opens with a squeak and in comes the blinding light again. It’s so bright, my captor’s clothes almost look pale as snow. But then I realize that’s only because I haven’t seen light in such a long time … and I won’t be seeing it any time soon.
The last words he speaks remain with me for the rest of the day, echoing in my mind over and over again. “Welcome to your own personal hell.”
Author

 

Clarissa Wild is a New York Times & USA Today Bestselling author, best known for the dark Romance novel Mr. X. Her novels include the Fierce Series, the Delirious Series, and Stalker. She is also a writer of erotic romance such as the Blissful Series, The Billionaire’s Bet series, and the Enflamed Series. She is an avid reader and writer of sexy stories about hot men and feisty women. Her other loves include her furry cat friend and learning about different cultures. In her free time she enjoys watching all sorts of movies, reading tons of books and cooking her favorite meals.


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Giveaway

SURPRISE COVER REVEAL: Deadly (An Empathy Novella) by Ker Dukey

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Deadly Book Info

 

Title: Deadly (an Empathy Novella)

Author: Ker Dukey

Release Date: August 24,2015

Deadly Synopsis

Normal is not something Ryan and Cereus have ever been, where’s the fun in normal?

When Cereus’s dreams follow her into the waking hours, she has to come to terms with the fact, Ryan is not the only monster in her madness.
That she herself… can be just as deadly.

Deadly Teasers

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Empathy

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NEW RELEASE FROM PEPPER WINTERS: Ruin & Rule (Pure Corruption MC #1)

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Meet Killian in Pepper Winter’s new MC Romance!

 

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about the book

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“We met in a nightmare. The in-between world where time had no power over reason. We fell in love. We fell hard. But then we woke up. And it was over . . .”

RUIN & RULE

She is a woman divided. Her past, present, and future are as twisted as the lies she’s lived for the past eight years. Desperate to get the truth, she must turn to the one man who may also be her greatest enemy . . .

He is the president of Pure Corruption MC. A heartless biker and retribution-deliverer. He accepts no rules, obeys no one, and lives only to reap revenge on those who wronged him. And now he has stolen her, body and soul.

Can a woman plagued by mystery fall in love with the man who refuses to face the truth? And can a man drenched in darkness forgo his quest for vengeance-and finally find redemption?

“Ruin & Rule is a full-length book at 436 pages and ends on a cliffhanger. Cleo and Kill’s story continues in SIN & SUFFER.”

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naughty mom review

Ruin & Rule (Pure Corruption MC, #1)Ruin & Rule by Pepper Winters
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is DEFINITELY a MUST READ!!!!

Ohmygawd!! I don’t even know where to begin with this. The closer I got to the end, the closer I got to the edge of my seat. I didn’t want it to end. There’s still so much of the story to be told and I’m going to go mad crazy waiting for the next book!!!

Every page was filled with suspense, mystery and intrigue. This will be a hard review to write because I don’t want to risk giving anything away!!

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OK, so after a few hours. I think I’ve gathered my wits about me to try and articulate my review. There’s so much in this story that it’s difficult to rave and rave about it all without giving all the secrets away…

Our heroine wakes up not knowing what’s going on and thrown into a world where she’s being used as a pawn but doesn’t know who or why and she comes face to face with a man that somehow owns her soul without her knowing how or why.

So unsure of what’s going on she has no choice but to turn to the man she’s not sure she can trust to try and find those answers but he’s not willing to help. For years he’s suffered from loss and betrayal that he’s jaded and hard edged that not even her beauty can get through to him.

But they have an attraction/desire for each other that is utterly undeniable. They were so explosive together that it added just the right amount of steam to the story.

As I mentioned before, the suspense was OFF. THE. CHARTS! OMG, I breathed this book from start to finish (in one sitting) and as I approached the end, I forgot to breathe many times; and when it ended??? I didn’t know what to do with myself. I’m hoping the next seven months go by quickly because waiting for Sin & Suffer (Pure Corruption MC #2) is going to be TORTURE!! I can’t wait to see what’s next for them and how much more we’ll learn of their story.

TOP 5 of my 2015 list!!
View all my reviews

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EXCERPT

Prologue

We met in a nightmare.

The in-between world where time had no power over rhyme, reason, or connection. We met. We stared. We knew.

There was no distortion from the outside world. No right or wrong. No confusion or battles from hearts and minds.

Just us. In our silent dreamworld.

That nightmare became our home. Planting ghosts, raising fantasies. Entwined together in our happily skewed reality.

We fell in love. We fell hard.

In those fleeting seconds of our nightmare, we lived an eternity.

But then we woke up.

And it was over.

 

Chapter One

I always believed life would grant rewards to those most worthy. I was fucking naïve. Life doesn’t reward—it ruins. It ruins those most deserving and takes everything. It takes everything all while watching any remaining goodness rot to hate.

—Kill

Darkness.

That was my world now. Literally and physically.

The back of my skull hurt from being knocked unconscious. My wrists and shoulders ached from lying on my back with my hands tied behind me.

Nothing was broken—at least it didn’t feel that way—but everything was bruised. The fuzziness receded wisp by wisp, parting the clouds of sleep, trying to shed light on what’d happened. But there was no light. My eyes blinked at the endless darkness from the mask tied around my head. Anxiety twisted my stomach at having such a fundamental gift taken away.

I didn’t move, but mentally catalogued my body from the tips of my toes to the last strand of hair on my head. My jaw and tongue ached from the foul rag stuffed in my mouth and my nose permitted a shallow stream of oxygen to enter—just enough to keep me alive.

Fear tried to claw its way through my mind, but I shoved it away. I deliberately suppressed panic in order to assess my predicament rather than lose myself to terror.

Fear never helps, only hinders.

My senses came back, creeping tentatively, as if afraid whoever had stolen me would notice their return.

Sound: the squeak of brakes, the creak of a vehicle settling from motion to stopping.

Touch: the skin on my right forearm stung, throbbing with a mixture of soreness and sharpness. A burn perhaps?

Smell: dank rotting vegetables and the astringent, pungent scent of fear—but it wasn’t mine. It was theirs.

It wasn’t just me being kidnapped.

My heart flurried, drinking in their terror. It made my breath quicken and legs itch to run. Forcing myself to ignore the outside world, I focused inward. Clutching my inner strength where calmness was a need rather than a luxury.

I refused to lose myself in a fog of tears. Desperation was a curse and I wouldn’t succumb, because I had every intention of being prepared for what might happen next.

I hated the sniffles and stifled sobs of others around me. Their bleak sadness tugged at my heartstrings, making me fight with my own preservation, replacing it with concern for theirs.

Get through this, then worry about them.

I didn’t think this was a simple opportunistic snatch. Whoever had stolen me planned it. The hunch grew stronger as I searched inside for any liquor remnants or the smell of cigarettes.

Had I been at a party? Nightclub?

Nothing.

I hadn’t been stupid or reckless. I think…

No hint or clue as to where I’d been or what I’d been doing when they’d come for me.

I wriggled, trying to move away from the stench. My bound wrists protested, stinging as the rope around them gnawed into my flesh like twine-beasts. My ribs bellowed, along with my head. There was no give in my restraints. I stopped trying to move, preserving my energy.

I tried to swallow.

No saliva.

I tried to speak.

No voice.

I tried to remember what happened.

I tried to remember…

Panic.

Nothing.

I can’t remember.

“Get up, bitch,” a man said. Something jabbed me in the ribs. “Won’t tell you again. Get.”

I froze as my mind hurtled me from present to past.

I’ll miss you so much,” she wailed, hugging me tighter.

“I’m not dying, you know.” I tried to untangle myself, looking over my shoulder at the final call flashing for my flight. I hated being late for anything. Let alone my one chance at escaping and finding out the truth once and for all.

“Call me the moment you get there.”

“Promise.” I drew a cross over my heart—

The memory shattered as my horizontal body suddenly went vertical in one swoop.

Who was that girl? Why did I have no memory of it ever happening?

“I said get up, bitch.” The man breathed hard in my ear, sending a waft of reeking breath over me. The blindfold stole my sight, but it left my nose woefully unprotected.

Unfortunately.

My captor shoved me forward. The ground was steady beneath my feet. The sickness plaiting with my confusion faded, leaving me cold.

My legs stumbled in the direction he wanted me to go. I hated shuffling in the darkness, not knowing where I came from or where I was being herded. There were no sounds of comfort or smothered snickers. This wasn’t a masquerade.

This was real.

This is real.

My heart thudded harder, fear slipping through my defenses. But full-blown terror remained elusive. Slippery like a silver fish, darting on the outskirts of my mind. It was there but fleeting, keeping me clear-headed and strong.

I was grateful for that. Grateful that I maintained what dignity I had left—remaining strong even in the face of the unknown terrors lurking on the other side of my blindfold.

Moans and whimpers of other women grew in decibels as men ordered them to follow the same path I walked. Either death row or salvation, I had no choice but to inch my way forward, leaving my forgotten past behind.

I willed snippets to come back. I begged the puzzlement of my past to slot into place, so I could make sense of this horrible world I’d awoken in.

But my mind was locked to me. A fortress withholding everything I wished to know.

The pushing stopped. So did I.

Big mistake.

“Move.” A cuff to the back of my head sent me wheeling forward. I didn’t stop again. My bare feet traversed…wood?

Bare feet?

Where are my shoes?

The missing knowledge twisted my stomach.

Where did I come from?

How did I end up here?

What’s my name?

It wasn’t the terror of the unknown future that stole my false calmness. It was the fear of losing my very self. They’d stolen everything. My triumphs, my trespasses, my accomplishments and failures.

How could I deal with this new world if I didn’t know what skills I had to stay alive? How could I hope to defeat my enemy when my mind revolted and locked me out?

Who am I?

To have who I was deleted…It was unthinkable.

“Faster, bitch.” Something cold wedged against my spine, pushing me onward. With my hands behind my back, I shuffled faster, negotiating the ground as best I could for dips or trips.

“Step down.” The man grabbed my bound wrists, giving me something to lean against as my toes navigated the small steps before me.

“Again.”

I obeyed.

“Last one.”

I managed the small staircase without falling flat on my face.

My face.

What do I look like?

A loud scraping noise sounded before me. I shied back, bumping against a feminine form. The woman behind me cried out—the first verbal sound of another.

“Move.” The pressure on my lower back came again, and I obeyed. Inching forward until the stuffy air of old vegetables and must was replaced by…copper and metallic…blood?

Why…why is that so familiar?

I gasped as my mind free-fell into another memory.

“I don’t think I can do this.” I darted away, throwing up in the rubbish bin in the classroom. The unique stench of blood curdled my stomach.

“Don’t overthink it. It’s not what you’re doing to the animal to make it bleed. It’s what you’re doing to make it live.” My professor shook his head, waiting for me to swill out my mouth and return white-faced and queasy to the operation in progress.

My heart splintered like a broken piece of glass, reflecting the compassion and responsibility I felt for such an innocent creature. This little puppy that’d been dumped in a plastic bag to die after being shot with BB gun pellets. He’d survive only if I mastered the skills to stem his internal bleeding and embrace the vocation I was called to do.

Inhaling the scent of blood, I let it invade my nostrils, scald my throat, and impregnate my soul. I drank its coppery essence. I drenched myself in the smell of the creature’s life force until it no longer affected me.

Picking up a scalpel, I said, “I’m ready—”

“Holy fuck!” The man guiding me forward suddenly whacked the base of my spine. The hard pain shoved me forward and I tripped.

“Wire—get me fucking reinforcements. He’s started a motherfucking war!”

Wind and body motion swarmed me as men charged from behind. The darkness I lived in suddenly came alive with sound.

Bullets flew, impaling themselves into the metal sides of the vehicle I’d just stepped from. Pings and ricochets echoed in my ear. Curses bellowed; moans of pain threaded like a breeze.

Someone grabbed my arm, swinging me to the side. “Get down!” The inertia of his throw knocked me off balance. With my wrists bound together, I had nothing to grab with, no way to protect myself from falling.

I fell.

My stomach swooped as tumbled off a small platform and smashed against the ground.

Dirt, damp grass, and moldy leaves replaced the stench of blood, cutting through the cloying sharpness of spilled metallic. My mouth opened, gasping in pain. Blades of grass tickled my lips as my cheek stuck to wet mud.

My shoulder screamed with agony, but I ignored the new injury. My mind clung to the unlocked memory. The fleeting recollection of my profession.

I’m a vet.

The sense of homecoming and security that one little snippet brought was priceless. My soul snarled for more, suddenly ravenous for missing information.

I skipped straight from fumbling uncertainty into starvation for more.

Tell me! Show me. Who am I?

I searched inside for more clues. But it was like trying to grab on to an elusive dream, fading faster and faster the harder I chased.

I couldn’t remember anything about medicine or how to heal. All I knew was I’d been trained to embrace the scent of blood. I wasn’t afraid of it. I didn’t faint or suffer sickness at the sight of it pouring from an open wound.

That tiniest knowledge was enough to settle my prickling nerves and focus on the outside world again.

Battle cries. Men screaming. Men growling. The dense thuds of fists on flesh and the horrible deflection of gunshots.

I couldn’t understand. Had I fallen through time and entered an alternate dimension?

Another body landed on top of mine.

I cried out, winded from a sharp poke of an elbow to my ribs.

The figure rolled away, crying softly. Feminine.

Why aren’t I crying?

I once again searched for fear. It wasn’t natural not to be afraid. I’d woken up alone, stolen, and thrown into the middle of a war, yet I wasn’t hyperventilating or panicked.

My calmness was like a drug, oozing over me, muting the sharp starkness of my situation. It was bearable if I embraced courage and the knowledge that I was strong.

My hands balled, grateful for the thought. I didn’t know who I was, but it didn’t matter, because the person who I was in this moment mattered the most.

I had to remain segmented, so I could get through whatever was about to happen. All I had was gut instinct, quiet strength, and rationality. Everything else had been taken.

“Stop fighting, you fucking idiots!”

The loud growl rumbled like an earthquake, hushing the battle in one fell swoop. Whoever had spoken had power.

Immense power. Colossal power.

A shiver darted over my skin.

“What the fuck happened? Have you lost your goddamn lovin’ mind?” a man yelled.

A sound of a short scuffle, then the fresh whiff of tilled dirt graced my nose.

“It’s done. Throw down your weapons and bend a fucking knee.” The same earthquake rumbled. The weight of his command pushed me harder against the damp ground.

“I’m not bending nothing, you asshole. You aren’t my Prez!”

“I am. Have been for the past four years.”

“You’re not. You’re his bitch. Don’t think his power is yours.”

Another fight—muffled fists and kicks. It ended swiftly with a painful groan.

The earthquake voice came again. “Open your eyes and follow the red fucking river. Your chosen—the one you hand-picked to slaughter me and take over the Club—he’s dead. Did you ever stop to think Wallstreet made me Prez for a fucking reason?”

Another moan.

“I’m the chosen one. I’m the one who knows the family secrets, absorbed the legacy, and earned his way into power. You don’t know shit. Nobody does. So bend a fucking knee and respect.”

Another tremor ran down my back.

Silence for a time, apart from the squelch of boots and heavy breathing. Then a barely muttered curse. “You’ll die. One way or another, we won’t put up with a Dagger as a Prez. We’re the Corrupts, goddammit. Having a traitor rule us is a fucking joke.”

“I’m the traitor? The man who obeys your leader? Who guides in his stead? I’m the traitor when you try and rally my brothers in a war?” A heavy thud of a fist connected with flesh. “No…I’m not. You are.”

My mind raced, sucking up noises and forming wild conclusions of what happened before me. Was this World War Three? Was this the apocalypse of the life I couldn’t remember? No matter how I pieced it together, I couldn’t make sense of anything.

The air was thick with anticipation. I didn’t know how many men stood before me. I didn’t know how many corpses littered the ground, or how such violence could be permitted in the world I used to know. But I did know the cease-fire was fragile and any moment it would explode.

A single threat slithered through the grass like a snake. “I’ll kill you, motherfucker. Mark my words. The true Corrupts are just waiting to take you out.”

The gentle foot-thuds of someone large vibrated through the ground. “The Corrupts haven’t existed for four fucking years. The moment I took the seat, it’s been Pure Corruption all the way. And you’re not fucking pure enough for this Club. You’re done.”

I flinched as the sulfuric boom of a gun ripped through the stagnant air.

A crash as a body fell lifeless to the grass. A soft puff of a soul escaping.

Murder.

Murder was committed right before me.

The inherent need to nurture and heal—the part of me that was as steadfast as the beat of my heart—wept with regret.

Death was something I’d fought against on a daily basis, but now I was weaponless.

I hated that a life had been stolen right before me. That I hadn’t been able to stop it.

I’m a witness.

And yet, I’d witnessed nothing.

I’d been privy to a battle but seen nothing. Knew no one. I would never be able to tell who shot whom, or who was right and who was wrong.

My hands shook, even though I managed to stay eerily calm. Am I in shock? And if I was, how did I cure myself?

The woman beside me curled into a ball, her knees digging into my side. My first reaction was to repel away from the touch. I didn’t know who was friend or foe. But a second reaction came quickly; the urge to share my calmness—to let her know that no matter what happened, she wasn’t alone. We faced the same future—no matter how grim.

Voices cascaded over us, whispers mainly, quickly spoken orders. Every sound was heightened. Being robbed of sight made my body seek other ways in which to find clues.

“Get rid of the bodies before daybreak.”

“We’ll go back and make sure we’re still covered.”

“Send out the word. It’s over. The Prez won—no anarchy today.”

Each voice was distinct but my ears twitched only for one: the earthquake rumble that set my skin quivering like quicksand.

He hadn’t spoken since he’d condemned someone to death and pulled the trigger. Every second of not hearing him made my heart trip faster. I wasn’t afraid. I should be. I should be immobile with fear. But he invoked something in me—something primal. Just like I knew I was female and a vet, I knew his voice meant something. Every inch of me tensed, waiting for him to speak. It was wrong to crave the voice of a killer, but it was the only thing I wanted.

Needed.

I need to know who he is.

Wet mud sucked loudly against boots as they came closer.

The woman whimpered, but I angled my chin toward the sound, wishing my eyes were uncovered.

I wanted to see. I wanted to witness the carnage before me. Because it was carnage. The stench of death confirmed it. It was morbid to want to see such destruction, but without my sight all of this seemed like a terrible nightmare. Nothing was grounded—completely nonsensical and far too strange.

I needed proof that this was real.

I needed concrete evidence that I wasn’t mad. That my body was intact, even if my mind was not.

I sucked in a breath as warm fingers touched my cheek, angling my face upward and out of the mud. Strong hands caressed the back of my skull, fumbling with my blindfold.

The anticipation of finally getting my wish to see made me stay still and cooperative in his hold.

I didn’t say a word or move. I just waited. And breathed. And listened.

The man’s breath was heavy and low, interspersed with a quick catch of pain. His fingers were swift and sure, but unable to hide the small fumble of agony.

He’s hurt.

The pressure of the blindfold suddenly released, trading opaque darkness for a new kind of gloom.

Night sky. Moonshine. Stars above.

Anchors of a world I knew, but no recognition of the dark-shrouded industrial estate where blood gleamed silver-black and corpses dotted the field.

I’m alive.

I can see.

The joy at having my eyes freed came and went as blazing as a comet.

Then my life ended as our gazes connected.

Green to green.

I have green eyes.

Down and down I spiraled, deeper and deeper into his clutches.

My life—past, present, and future—lost all purpose the second I stared into his soul.

The fear I’d been missing slammed into my heart.

I quivered. I quaked.

Something howled deep inside with age-old knowledge.

Every part of me arched toward him, then shied away in terror.

Him.

A nightmare come to life.

A nightmare I wanted to live.

If life was a tapestry, already threaded and steadfast, then he was the scissors that cut me free. He tore me out, stole me away, changed the whole prophecy of who I was meant to be.

Jaw-length dark hair, tangled and sweaty, framed a square jaw, straight nose, and full lips. His five-o’clock stubble held remnants of war, streaked with dirt and blood. But it was his eyes that shot a quivering arrow into my heart, spreading his emerald anger.

He froze, his body curving toward mine. Blistering hope flickered across his features. His mouth fell open and love so achingly deep glowed in his gaze. “What—” A leg gave out, making him kneel beside me. His hands shook as he cupped my face, his fingers digging painfully into my cheekbones. “It’s not—”

My heart raced. Yes.

“You know me,” I breathed.

The moment my voice webbed around us, storm clouds rolled over the sunshine in his face, blackening the hope and replacing it with pure hatred.

He changed from watching me like I was his angel to glowering as if I were a despicable devil.

I shivered at the change—at the iciness and hardness. He breathed hard, his chest rising and falling. His lips parted, a rumbling command falling from his mouth to my ears. “Stand up. You’re mine now.”

When I didn’t move, his hand landed on my side. His touch was blocked by clothing but I felt it everywhere. He stroked my soul, tickled my heart, and caressed every cell with fingers that despised me.

I couldn’t suck in a proper breath.

With a vicious push, he rolled me over, and with a sharp blade sliced my bindings. With effortless power, so thrilling and terrifying, he hauled me to my feet.

I didn’t sway. I didn’t cry. Only pulled the disgusting gag from my mouth and stared in silence.

I stared up, up, up into his bright green eyes, understanding something I shouldn’t understand.

This was him.

My nightmare.

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about the author

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Pepper Winters wears many roles. Some of them include writer, reader, sometimes wife. She loves dark, taboo stories that twist with your head. The more tortured the hero, the better, and she constantly thinks up ways to break and fix her characters. Oh, and sex… her books have sex.

She loves to travel and has an amazing, fabulous hubby who puts up with her love affair with her book boyfriends.

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Checkout Pepper’s other books:

DARK Romance

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GREY Romance

COMING SOON: Excerpt Reveal of King by T.M. Frazier [Available for Preorder Now]

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excerpt4

“I hate the way you made me feel. Well, most of the time.” I spat. I was tired of dancing around the truth. “I hate the confusion you bring into my already confused life. I need this back and forth shit to end.” I took a deep breath. “I can’t take it anymore. You like me. You hate me. You like me. You want to kill me. You want to fuck me. You want me to stay. You want me to live.  My head is fucking spinning over here.” My buzz faded faster than the setting sun. “You should leave. I don’t want you here,” I added.

“I know. I don’t care.” King said.

“Oh, I’m fully aware that you don’t care. That I know.”

“You don’t know shit, Pup.” King barked.

“Oh yeah? So you didn’t just spend the entire night at the carnival all over me, saying sweet shit to me, making me feel like this stupid thing between us is something more than just a stupid thing, only to whip out your dick with someone else the very first chance you got? Go back to the fucking house, King. Go back to that girl. I hope she’s everything you wanted.”

“I can’t,” King said evenly.

“Why not? Seemed easy for you before.”

“Because, Pup, I can’t because I don’t want to. No matter how hard I try to fight this, I’m drawn to you. You think I like this back and forth shit? You think you’re the only one who’s fucking confused here?” He shook his head like he couldn’t believe the words that were coming out of his mouth. “I’m drawn to you,” he repeated turning my chin up to him.

“What do you expect? Am I supposed to fall at your feet and thank you for being ‘drawn to me’?” Not only was he confusing, he was fucking infuriating. “Drawn to me? You’re drawn to me! Well, let me just take off my fucking panties then, and let’s do this shit. Yeah, you were really drawn to me. Tell me something, KING. Do most first dates end with the guy getting sucked off by another girl? I mean, I’ve never been on one, so you tell me. I could be wrong here. Because if the answer is yes, then this date has gone fucking swimmingly!”

“I’m…FUCK! “You think you know everything but you don’t. All you do is run those pretty lips of yours and expect me to be able to just give into you!” King threw his hands up in the air. “You make me fucking crazy, you know that!” he shouted.

“I make YOU crazy? How the fuck do you think I feel? Most of the time I don’t know if you want to kill me or fuck me!” I screamed, every single word he spoke ignited my anger until it wasn’t something I could even begin to hold back.

King had the audacity to actually smile. He leaned forward and whispered seductively against my cheek, “Can’t I want both, Pup?”

I pulled back and stood up.

“NO! You can’t! And stop calling me, Pup. It’s a stupid fucking name. I’m not your fucking pet!”

I paced the dock. My rage was at a boiling point I couldn’t turn off. This was his fault. He’d made me into this lunatic.

King stood and grabbed my face with both hands, forcing me to look at him. “Yes you are,” he said, as he lowered his lips and brushed them softly against mine in a move so gentle, so unlike him, it took me a few seconds before I registered what was happening.

Then, my anger returned, in full force. Using both my hands, I pushed against his chest until he had no choice but to release me.

“Fuck you! You don’t want to keep me!” I shouted over my shoulder as I made my way to the front of the house and started down the gravel driveway. “Do you think I’m stupid? You wouldn’t be getting your jollies while I’m in the next room if it was me you wanted.”

A large hand grabbed my shoulder and spun me around.

“Let go of me!” I shouted.

“Listen, Pup. I’ve tried it your way. I tried gentle just now, but you didn’t listen. Now, we’re going to do it my way, and you’re going to fucking listen. Don’t make me have to cuff you again.” He warned.

 

KING. IS. COMING!

Meet King on June 15th!

Pre-order NOW AVAILABLE

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kingBlurb

Homeless, hungry and desperate enough to steal, Doe has no memories of who she is or where she comes from.

A notorious career criminal just released from prison, King is someone you don’t want to cross unless you’re prepared to pay him back in blood, sweat, pu$$y or a combination of all three.

King’s future hangs in the balance. Doe’s is written in her past. When they come crashing together, they will have to learn that sometimes in order to hold on, you have to first let go.

Warning: This book contains graphic violence, consensual and nonconsensual sex, drug use, abuse, and other taboo subjects and adult subject matter. Although originally slated to be a standalone, KING is now a two part series.

KING TEASER 2

 

 about the author4

t.m. frazier

T.M. (Tracey Marie) Frazier resides in sunny Southwest Florida with her husband and three feisty fur kids.

She attended Florida Gulf Coast University where she specialized in public speaking. After years working in real estate and new home construction, she decided it was finally time to stop pushing her dreams to the back burner and pursue writing seriously.

In the third grade she wrote her very first story about a lost hamster. It earned rave reviews from both her teacher and her parents.

It only took her twenty years to start the next one.

It will not be about hamsters.

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THANK YOU!

NEW RELEASE & EXCERPT REVEAL: Third Debt (Indebted #4) by Pepper Winters

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nila

I’D GIVEN MY heart to my enemy.

I’d fallen.

Fallen.

Fallen.

Hard.

There was no bottom to my affection. No limit to what I would do to protect it.

Jethro was mine and it was up to me….

…up to me to end this.

I was no longer trying to save myself.

I was trying to save him.

From his nightmares.

From himself.

From them.

 

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Jethro & Nila Return in Third Debt!

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third debt coversynopsis (2)

“She healed me. She broke me. I set her free. But we are in this together. We will end this together. The rules of this ancient game can’t be broken.”

Nila Weaver no longer recognises herself. She’s left her lover, her courage, and her promise. Two debts down. Too many to go.

Jethro Hawk no longer recognises himself. He’s embraced what he always ran from, and now faces punishment far greater than he feared.

It’s almost time. It’s demanding to be paid.

The Third Debt will be the ultimate test…

 

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PREORDER Fourth Debt (Indebted #5) NOW

 

author bio (2)

pepper winters banner

Pepper Winters wears many roles. Some of them include writer, reader, sometimes wife. She loves dark, taboo stories that twist with your head. The more tortured the hero, the better, and she constantly thinks up ways to break and fix her characters. Oh, and sex… her books have sex.

She loves to travel and has an amazing, fabulous hubby who puts up with her love affair with her book boyfriends.

Website | Pinterest | Facebook | Twitter | Blog | Goodreads

Her Dark Erotica books include:

Monsters In The Dark

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monsters in the dark box set

Her Grey Romance books include:

Destroyed

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COVER REVEAL: Souls Unfractured (Hades Hangmen #3) by Tillie Cole

Cover Reveal

Title: Souls Unfractured
Series: Hades Hangmen #3
Author: Tillie Cole
Age group: New Adult
Genre: Dark Contemporary Romance

Release date: TBA

 

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BLURB: COMING SOON

 

 

The Hades Hangman MC Series

 

Tillie Cole Author Picauthor bio (2)
Tillie Cole is a Northern girl through and through. She originates from a place called Teesside on that little but awesomely sunny (okay I exaggerate) Isle called Great Britain. She was brought up surrounded by her English rose mother — a farmer’s daughter, her crazy Scottish father, a savagely sarcastic sister and a multitude of rescue animals and horses.

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