Tag Archives: Menace Lolita Lopez

New Release: Caught By Menace (Grabbed #2) #scifi #bdsm

24 Jun

caughtbymenace_msr

 

Caught By Menace (Grabbed #2) released on Friday! The book is available at Amazon, Ellora’s Cave and All Romance eBooks. When it’s available at B&N and Kobo, I’ll drop the links here, Facebook and my website. I know how annoying it is to hunt for links when you want to read a book right now so I’ll make it as easy as possible!

The next book in the Grabbed series is Venom’s story. I’ll be turning that book into my editor by the end of July so I’d expect Ellora’s Cave will put it on the release schedule sometime in early fall. As soon as I know, I’ll let you know! Make sure to follow me here or Facebook or sign up for my newsletter to get info and updates on new releases, free reads, swag, giveaways, etc.

 

Caught By Menace

 

Menace’s plan to catch a sweet, docile woman is shot to hell when he’s tackled by a dark-haired beauty who wants to save her friend from being Grabbed. Refusing to leave the planet’s surface empty handed, Menace claims the spitfire with his collar.

Naya clawed her way off the streets of Connor’s Run and vowed to never let any man have control over her. She plans to make Menace so miserable he’ll set her free but the ruggedly sexy warrior disarms her with his unexpected patience and kindness.

Against her better judgment, Naya surrenders to Menace’s masterful hands and mouth. Submitting to her new husband brings her more pleasure and happiness than she’d ever imagined possible. For the first time in her life, she willingly trusts a man to protect her.

But when Naya’s past misdeeds catch up with her, the depth and strength of their feelings are put to the test. Determined to prove he’s worthy of her trust, Menace will stop at nothing to save her.

Inside Scoop: Our heroine learns to love every decadent delight the hero offers, including BDSM play and a sizzling M/F/M ménage.

 

Available now at Amazon, Ellora’s Cave and All Romance eBooks.
You can read excerpts and teasers here, here and here.

 

Caught By Menace Sneak Peek #3 #Grabbed #sexy #scifi

18 Jun

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Caught By Menace, the second book in the scorching hot scifi erotic romance Grabbed series, releases this Friday, June 21! As links go live on Amazon, B&N, All Romance eBooks and Ellora’s Cave, I’ll make them available here, on my website, on Facebook and Twitter. I know what a pain it is to have to hunt down a link for a book you want to read, like, right now so I’ll make it as easy as possible to find them. 🙂

I’ve offered two sneak peeks of this book here and here. This sexy little scene is the follow up to the second sneak peek from last week, just in case you want to, you know, reread it as a refresher…

 

Excerpt #3

 

Mouth dry, Naya licked her lips and stared right back at Menace. Was he serious? He looked deadly serious. Emphasis on the deadly. She marveled at his thickly corded arms and ridiculously broad chest. With his gray undershirt stretched across his muscled form, he looked a little less intimidating. She noticed the heavy tattoos running from the edge of his neck to his wrist but only on the right side. The long stretch of tanned skin on his left remained unmarked.

“Naya?” he prompted gently and took the flogger from her hand. “What do you say?”

She considered his dare. Multiple orgasms? Surely that couldn’t be true. She had a hard enough time finding one climax on her own and had never been able to find one with a partner. Of course, she’d never had a partner as dangerously sexy as this man. Menace scared her with his hulking size and fierce features, but he exuded such raw sexuality. If any man in the universe could coax two orgasms out of her, it was probably this one.

To be at his mercy terrified her. Could she really trust a man she’d known less than a day to make love to her? She examined his honest face. He’d promised he would never hurt her and she believed him. The way he’d taken down those canes was proof enough of his desire to be good to her. The cynic in her screamed that it was all for show, but she didn’t believe that. He’d come in here with a white flag of surrender. That had to count for something.

Her gaze jumped to the cold metal table where his hand rested. She shook her head. “Not there.”

His eyes widened slightly. He seemed just as surprised by her acceptance of his offer as she was in giving it. Was she really going to do this? Was she really going to let this stranger touch her?

“All right.” Menace gestured around the room. “Pick a spot that seems comfortable.”

Gulping nervously, Naya gripped the tough fabric of the uniform shirt covering her nakedness and scanned the room. She spotted a black couch-like contraption against the other wall. It had a curved shape, the sleek fabric gently sloping and rolling like an S. It looked comfortable enough and as close to a bed as she was going to get. “What about that?”

Menace followed her pointing finger. “I think that’s a perfect choice. Come with me.”

She gazed at his outstretched hand. Asking her to come with him seemed a huge improvement over being Grabbed and tossed over his shoulder. She gathered her courage and placed her hand in his. She gripped his fingers. “Don’t make me regret trusting you.”

His lips twitched in a smile. “Never.”

Naya let him tug her along beside him. When they reached the big curving couch, he dropped her hand and moved to one of the cabinets lining the wall. He dropped the flogger with the wide, soft strands onto the countertop. He opened a bottom door and retrieved a wedge-shaped cushion that he placed in the lowest curve of the couch.

“To support your back,” he explained. “You Calyx women are a lot smaller than our women. So many of our supplies are made with them in mind but the manufacturers are starting to add supplements like these to make them work for your kind.”

Naya anxiously nibbled on her thumb. She’d just noticed the numerous loops adorning the edges of the odd furniture piece. There was only one reason for them and it wasn’t decorative. “Are you going to cuff me again?”

“Why do you sound so worried? You still have that hairpin, right?” Menace glanced at her and smiled as he secured the extra cushion in place. “Do you want me to cuff you?”

She shook her head and pinched the pin between her fingertips. “No.”

“Why not?”

She blinked. “Because it’s weird.”

He frowned at her and gestured for her to hand over the hairpin. She hesitated before giving it to him. He slipped it into his pocket. “Weird? That’s not very helpful. Do you mean uncomfortable? Do you mean frightening?”

“All three,” she replied. “It’s weird that a grown man wants to cuff a woman and restrain her for sex. Where I come from, men restrain women so they can hurt them. It’s as simple as that.”

“But what if I ask for your permission to restrain you and I promise not to hurt you?”

She couldn’t help but laugh. “Are you trying to negotiate with me? You realize that I ran one of the most successful shops in Connor’s Run, right? You can’t beat me when it comes to negotiation.”

Menace looked surprised. “I didn’t know that you were a businesswoman.”

“You didn’t ask.”

He had the decency to look chagrined. “You’re right. What did you sell?”

“Everything and anything I could make a profit on, but my main business was pawning.”

“That’s loaning money, right?”

She nodded. “A customer brings in something of value and asks for a loan. I keep the item until they repay the loan plus a small amount of interest. If they don’t come back for the item, I sell it in my shop. Simple. Easy. Uncomplicated.”

“Were you very wealthy?”

Naya laughed. “Hardly.”

“But you said your business was successful.”

“It was, but the only way to get wealthy on Calyx is to deal dirty and do people wrong. That’s not my style. No, I ran a clean shop and treated my customers right. I earned a comfortable living.”

“What happened to your shop?”

“I sold it the morning they announced the lottery results and had the money transferred to a bank in the city. A friend of mine will transfer it to the colonies in a week’s time.”

His eyebrows arched. “You must really trust this friend to give him complete control of your funds.”

“I do.”

“More than me?”

She eyed him carefully. “You’re not my friend.”

“I could be,” Menace countered. “I could be more than your friend.”

More than her friend? Her lover? Her confidant? Her support system? She doubted any man would ever be able to be all of those things to her. “You’re my captor. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.”

Menace grunted in annoyance. “I thought we were past that.”

“How about we go back to your planet and I’ll hunt you down and take you back to Calyx where you’ll be my property. Let’s see how quickly you get beyond that.”

“Fair enough,” he finally conceded. “But we are together now. You’re mine. That collar around your neck makes us mates.”

Naya fingered the offensive circle of white leather. Rather glumly, she said, “Not exactly a silver wedding band, is it?”

Menace instantly perked up. “Would you like one? If it would make things easier between us, I’ll get two in the morning and find someone to perform a ceremony.”

His enthusiastic response shocked her. She hurriedly shot him down. “No, I don’t want to get married.”

His face fell. “I see.”

Seeing the hurt etched on his face made her ache. “No, I don’t think you do. Marriage is forever. It’s a real commitment.”

“I made a real commitment to you the moment I put that collar around your neck.”

“We must have different ideas of what commitment means. Where I come from, it means love and affection and dating and laughter and all that wonderful stuff.” Judging by the look on his face, she was only making things worse by pointing out everything they didn’t share. “Look, I’m sure you’re a nice guy, but I don’t plan to stick around here.”

“Are we back to that? To threats of escape?” He shook his head. “It’s a foolish dream, Naya. No one ever escapes. Ever.” He reached out and grasped her hand. His fingers brushed the raised bump along her wrist where they’d implanted one of their damn ID chips. “You’re being tracked around the clock. You’re on restrictions until I give word to security. You can’t even get out of this room.”

His words circled round and round in her head. The ominous threat left her sick and cold. She snatched her hand away and turned her back on him. “You’re a real miserable bastard, you know that?”

A long, painful moment of silence stretched between them. When Menace’s hands touched her shoulders, she flinched. Dwarfed by his big, hard frame, she couldn’t run. Maybe she didn’t want to run. It was maddening, really. One moment she wanted to bop him right in the nose for being so infuriating. The next she wanted to fall back against him and enjoy the strength of his arms holding her tight.

Menace gently kneaded her tight shoulders, his powerful hands easily manipulating her sore muscles. His body heat penetrated the fabric of the uniform shirt she wore and soothed her raw nerves. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have said that.”

“It’s the truth.”

“It is, but now you think I’m a controlling jerk.”

“To be fair, I thought that before you told me about the chip implanted in my wrist.”

He snorted with amusement. “Thanks.”

A white-hot frisson pierced her core as his thumb stroked the side of her neck. Trying to ignore the wonderful sensation he caused, she asked, “Why are you so intent on keeping me? Why not let me go and try again at the next Grab?”

“I want you. I’m keeping you.”

Recalling his ugly remark in the forest, she wondered aloud, “Even though I’m just the consolation prize?”

His hands stilled on her shoulders. With one swift step, he moved in front of her. Hands cupping her face, Menace gazed down at her, his expression one of concern. “Naya, do you think I meant that?”

“You said it,” she snapped back. “I learned a long time ago to believe what people tell you, even if it’s said jokingly.”

“Naya, I was joking. I was smiling when I said it.”

“Yeah, well, I couldn’t exactly see your face, could I?” she grumbled unhappily. “You’d thrown me over your shoulder, remember?”

“Yes.” He exhaled roughly and wiped a hand down his face. “I can’t seem to get anything right with you.”

Naya noticed the vulnerability in his expression. The depth of his remorse left her questioning everything she’d believed about this man and his culture. Sure, he’d Grabbed her, gagged and restrained her in flight and cuffed her to a chair in this torture chamber, but he hadn’t shown her any violence, not even when she’d struck him first. She’d been rude and nasty and had verbally abused him so badly his fellow soldiers had been laughing openly—and still he hadn’t raised his voice with her.

It occurred to her that maybe she was the one who had everything wrong. All along she had considered escaping to the colonies was the ultimate goal in her life, that only in Jesco or Safe Harbor could she find happiness. What if she’d been wrong? What if Danny’s tale of the Artist who was Grabbed living a life of luxury and happiness was true? What if this was her chance?

Fingers trembling, she placed a hand on Menace’s chest. His pale eyes flashed with uncertainty. Considering how badly she had behaved, he probably thought she was going to strike him or try to shove him backward to flee. She held his gaze and rose on tiptoes to kiss him. He was still much too tall for her to reach his mouth but he got the message and dipped his head.

Their lips finally touched. The bright burst of bliss filled her chest with such warmth. For the first time since meeting Menace, she relaxed completely. His lips were softer than she’d expected and moved gently across hers. She put her other hand on his chest and gripped the thin fabric of his undershirt. His scent, completely natural and unadorned, filled her nose. He smelled of man and soap and nothing else.

As if he feared spooking her, Menace cautiously placed his hands on her neck and face. He caressed her skin with his callused fingers. The rough sensation of his fingertips gliding over her neck and cheek ignited her desire. She couldn’t remember ever being this aroused by a man. Maybe it was the danger of the unknown or the primal maleness of Menace, but she practically vibrated with lust.

His tongue stabbed between her lips. She welcomed the invasion with a swipe of her own. His heavy breaths fanned her face. Their tongues dueled, but Naya quickly realized this was a battle she wasn’t going to win. She didn’t want to win it. For the first time in her life, she wanted to give up control.

“Menace…” She breathed his name as need gripped her.

“Tell me I can have you,” he instructed, his voice husky. “Give me permission to have you, Naya.”

She didn’t think twice. “Yes.”

 

 

#Grabbed Series Tour Starts Today! #scifi #romance #sexy

6 May

 

I’m taking Vicious and Menace with me on a blog tour for the next two weeks. There are lots of great stops and prizes! One winner will receive a $25 gift card. There are also digital copies of the books up for grabs! And teasers and interviews and excerpts!

Lolita Lopez’s GRABBED Series Blog Tour
5/06 – 5/19
5/06 – Romance Junkies
5/07 – Book Lovin Mamas
5/09 – United by Books
5/10 – My Reading Obsession
5/11 – Tiffy-Fit’s
5/13 – Salacious Reads
5/13 – Riverina Romantics
5/14 – Wicked Readings
5/15 – Book Monster Reviews
5/16 – Close Encounters
5/17 – Larissa’s Bookish Life
5/17 – Salacious Reads
5/18 -Ramblings From This Chick
5/19 – Reading Between The Wines

http://readingbetweenthewinesbookclub.blogspot.com/

 

Men of Grabbed #sexy #scifi #EllorasCave

14 Apr

First–I want to say thank you, thank you, thank you to all the readers who have discovered and enjoyed Grabbed By Vicious. You have no idea how amazing it feels to have so many of you finding me here, my website or Facebook. I love every single message and email I receive!

There have been quite a few questions about the other men in the series–and the answer is yes! They’ll all have books. Caught By Menace is currently in edits with Ellora’s Cave and I’ve finished a third of Venom. I plan to write Raze’s story this year and part of Cipher’s as well. Yes–Terror has a book!

Oh–and the Barnes and Noble thing. There was some sort of distributor snafu there and it should show up any day. You can grab an epub copy from Ellora’s Cave or All Romance eBooks–but I know how inconvenient it is to have to sideload a book so I sympathize with Nook readers’ frustrations. (Looks like Vicious is part of the rebate deal at ARe right now! Hot damn, I love a good sale! 🙂 )

I’ve created a new page on my website for the men of the Grabbed universe–Men of Grabbed. There are sexy pics of ridiculously hot man chests (delish!) and character backgrounds for the men in the books I’ve already contracted or will be shortly contracting with Ellora’s Cave.

Again–huge thanks to all the readers who have fallen in love with Vicious and Hallie. As a writer, there’s no better feeling than realizing readers love a couple as much as you do!

 

 

Grabbed By Vicious Sneak Peek! #scifi #capture #romance

15 Mar

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GRABBED BY VICIOUS releases on March 29 from Ellora’s Cave. This is the first book in my new GRABBED series.

In this scifi erotic romance series, Earth descendants who limped into a far corner of the galaxy on generational ships were given refuge and Calyx, a planet of their own, by the Harcos, the dominant, powerful race that controls the solar system. Now, many years later, a civil war rages among the Harcos. The battleship Valiant has been sent to patrol the area around the planet Calyx. Aboard this ship are some of the most vicious and battle-hardened men of their generation–and they’re all looking for wives.

The big, sexy sky warriors earn points through valor in battle. With enough points, they’re eligible to enter the Grabs, a race where young, unmarried women chosen by their village lotteries try to outrun them. Very few succeed but Halllie wants to be one of them.

BLURB

Hallie has never run so fast in her life. One of the frightening sky warriors from the warship Valiant is hot on her heels and intent on capturing her as his bride. He takes her down, places his collar around her neck. With one word, he claims her.

Mine.

Born and bred for the military, Vicious has spent years rising through the ranks. Hallie is his reward, the beautiful sprite ensnaring him with a glance.

Despite her fear of Vicious, Hallie surrenders under his skillful hands and mouth. If she’ll submit, he promises pleasure and comfort. After a lifetime of hardship, his offer tempts her greatly.

One night with Hallie and Vicious feels his protective instincts flaring. He’ll do anything to make her happy and keep her safe, even if that means surrendering his heart. Though he intended to master her, Vicious realizes it may be his sweet Hallie who masters him.

Inside Scoop: Our heroine endures trials and mild violence with strength equal to that of her warrior mate. (She also endures a collar and light BDSM, but she quickly learns to like that part.)

EXCERPT

She’d never run so fast in her life. Lungs burning and ribs aching, Hallie leapt over a downed log and hit the mossy ground running. Her heart raced as she sprinted through the woods.

She couldn’t get caught. She had to evade the wild-eyed, vicious-looking man hot on her tail.

Her gaze darted around the forest for natural markers. She’d studied the grid all morning and had mentally mapped out various routes through the woods, all of them leading her straight to the safe zone. If she reached that space of refuge first, she couldn’t be Grabbed, couldn’t be claimed by one of those fearsome warriors from the sky ships.

Panic gripped her belly at the sound of snapping twigs and rustling brush behind her. She kicked up her pace, bare feet pounding the ground even quicker. Though her thighs and calves were on fire, she had to go faster. She might collapse when she reached the safe zone but that was better than being captured by that blue-eyed devil.

They were a strange people, these Harcos warriors. Unlike her ancestors who had arrived in this star system aboard a generational ship from Earth, the Harcos people were native to this sector. They were a warrior race of incredibly technologically advanced humans. They were larger than the average Earth descendant and ascribed to a rigid, militaristic society.

But they’d given Hallie’s ancestors this small planet named Calyx. Instead of firing upon the generational ship that had limped into their solar system, they’d rendered aid and brought her ancestors here to this beautiful, wild place. They’d established a sort of quarantine around the planet and viewed those Earth pioneers as an endangered species of sorts. No one came on to the planet, and no one got off, for nearly four hundred years.

Until the war raging in the system spilled on to Calyx and the insurgents came…

Hallie’s ears perked to the crunch of twigs and ground cover under heavy boots. She gulped but kept running. The image of the massive warrior made her belly tremble.

She’d noticed him watching her from the dais before the Grab began. One glimpse of the white-haired man who towered over the others had struck fear in her heart. She’d never seen a shade of hair that pale on a man in his prime, nor had she ever seen arms so thick and corded. The all-black military garb didn’t do much to soften his intimidating image. She’d noticed the insignia on the left side of his chest. He wasn’t a mere soldier. The man was an officer, which meant he was the most ruthless of the ruthless, one so brutal and vicious he’d managed to survive countless battles and proved himself more merciless than the other men.

And he wanted her.

She’d known the second their gazes clashed that he was going to chase her. Her only advantage? Her small size and speed. All those late-night runs for the political dissidents who called themselves Red Feather, and the early morning training runs, had finally paid off. She’d always known this day would arrive and had always known her only chance to escape her village and this backward planet was to survive the Grab, earn her rights as a free woman and buy passage on a transport ship to the colonies.

Of course, she hadn’t planned on it happening so soon. She had her sister to thank for this nightmare, but those troubling thoughts could wait. Right now, Hallie had to focus on survival and evasion.

In the distance, she heard a squeal of excitement. She wasn’t surprised. Most of the women chosen in the lottery saw it as a stroke of good luck. They’d twittered excitedly when rounded up this morning and placed in the pen hastily constructed in the village center. The men from the sky ships Valiant and Arctis who had earned enough points to participate in the mating ritual had stood atop a raised stage to survey the stock. They’d leered down into the pen in search of the tastiest morsels. Hallie and a few of the other women who shared her view of the barbaric Grab ritual had kept their gazes fixed on the race grids.

She understood why some women viewed the Grab as an exciting prospect. Life in Harper’s Well wasn’t exactly hell, but it wasn’t an easy existence. Backbreaking labor in the fields and the monotony of housekeeping and childrearing seemed never-ending. The town council enforced an agrarian, pacifist and natural lifestyle. In exchange for protection from the horrors lurking in this end of the galaxy, they had agreed to provide the more superior Harcos race with food, other goods and women for breeding.

The life expectancy for a woman in Harper’s Well was incredibly low. It wasn’t much better in The City. Her own mother had died at just thirty-four years of age from a complicated labor. She’d lost the baby too. Hallie didn’t think she’d ever forget the bloody scene or the screams of agony wrenched from her mother’s throat as the baby descended breech. If they’d lived in The City, or even the outlying outer space colonies, in places where medicine and science were encouraged and actively practiced, her mother would have lived. Here, though, there were no hospitals and no doctors. To even consider such a thing was akin to heresy.

Hallie wanted to escape all that. Watching her mother die a senseless death had shown her what lay ahead in her future. If she wasn’t Grabbed by a Harcos warrior, she’d end up married to a farmer and have ten children by thirty, if labor and delivery or some other illness didn’t kill her first. Her daughters would endure the same fate. There were no universities. There was no freedom of choice.

But the stories she’d heard about what happened to the women taken away to the sky ships terrified Hallie even more than the idea of facing a bleak future here. Belonging to one of those ruthless killing machines was too frightening. No. She had to win this race. She had to escape the Grab zone and reach safe territory.

A menacing laugh echoed in the wilderness. Eyes wide, she glanced over her shoulder and spotted the blue-eyed, white-haired man. He flashed his teeth in a grin and sprinted toward her. Her stomach lurched. She raced forward. “No!”

Her gaze scanned for some place to hide, some way to escape this man’s clutches. There was nowhere to go. Even if she climbed a tree, she was sure he’d follow—or simply knock it over. The man was built like a bull. Knowing her luck, he’d probably throw his shoulder against a tree trunk and uproot it with little effort.

The fine hairs on her arms and the back of her neck stood on edge. She gritted her teeth as panic started to take hold. Adrenaline saturated her blood stream. She had to get away. She had to—

“Oof!”

Two burly arms wrapped around her waist and lifted her from the ground. She screamed and kicked, refusing to be taken quietly. Her violent thrashing knocked her captor off balance. He started to fall forward and she flinched, certain she was about to be smashed between his huge body and the hard ground. Instead, he spun and bore the brunt of their impact. They bounced twice and skidded a few inches on the grass.

Something primal ignited in her brain. He’d gone down. She was on top. She had to escape.

She slammed both elbows into his chest and scrambled free from his grasp. She slipped and barely evaded his clutching fingers.

In an instant, he was on his feet and chasing after her again. She jumped a couple of logs and decided a zigzag pattern was in her best interest. She just had to keep him at bay a little longer.

The sight of the small stream up ahead filled her with dread. It was just deep enough to slow her down if she waded into it and tried to swim, but it wasn’t very wide. She eyed the ancient tree she’d played in as a child. The old knotted rope they’d all used to launch themselves into the water still hung there.

Not bothering to slow down, she leapt onto one of the boulders they’d used as a diving board and snatched the rope. Her momentum carried her forward. She held tight to the rope and prayed it would sling her close enough to the other side. It was going to be a nasty jump but she didn’t have a choice.

Hallie let go of the rope and flew like one of the tree squirrels she’d laughed at as a child. She hit the opposite bank at an odd angle. Mud squished between her bare toes. She tumbled forward but quickly regained her balance and started to run.

The sound of a branch snapping seized her attention. She glanced over her shoulder just in time to see the man falling into the stream as the rope slackened. At any other time she would have laughed her ass off at the sight, but right now it was her only chance to get free. Falling into the stream and swimming to the other side would slow him down.

She rushed into the forest, her mind racing as she compared the natural markers to the map of the Grab zone. She realized how close she was to freedom. It spurred her onward. Her entire body ached but she pushed through the pain. Better to endure one night of discomfort than a lifetime of misery with that monstrous man.

She burst through the tree line and spied the roped-off area denoting the safe zone in the distance. Hope exploded in her chest. I’m going to make it!

In the next instant, all that hope was dashed.

Somehow, her would-be captor had caught up with her. He grabbed her again, this time taking her to the ground with finesse. His soaking-wet clothing hadn’t slowed him down much.

Now the cold wetness seeped through her thin shirt and shorts. She fought him every inch of the way to the grass. Even when he pinned her smaller body beneath his, those strong thighs clamped on either side of her waist, she twisted and snarled. She tried to slap him but he was too quick. He snatched her wrist and yanked her arm above her head. He hastily secured her other wrist in the same big hand.

When he leaned forward, she held her breath, certain he was going to hit her. She’d heard the stories of their brutality. After the way she’d fought him—and nearly won—she supposed she’d probably wounded his pride. Eyes closed, she waited for that first strike, certain the pain would be unlike any she’d ever felt from her father’s fist.

But it never came. Instead, the most shocking and unexpected thing happened.

He laughed.

Her eyes popped open at the rich, rough baritone. He’d tossed back his head as he laughed, his neck elongated and the smallest hint of a tattoo peeking out from his shirt collar. When he gazed down at her again, it wasn’t with derision or anger. It was amusement that glinted in those pale blue eyes. He stroked her cheek with his fingers, the rough fabric of his black gloves rasping her skin. “My god, but you were worth the chase.”

Hallie didn’t know what to say to that. He was glad she’d almost beaten him?

“I’ve never felt more alive in my life,” he admitted. He lowered his face until it was mere inches from hers. He studied her intently. “You’re so beautiful.” Then with a twitch of his lips, he added, “But I think you’re going to cause me a great deal of trouble.”

“Let me go,” she begged.

“Never.”

“You don’t want me. I’m not the docile kind of woman your people prefer.”

“Oh, I know.” His lips ghosted across her cheek. “You’re exactly what I want, though.”

She closed her eyes and tried to ignore the strange heat blossoming in her lower belly as his lips moved across her skin. Keenly aware of his strength, she tried to remain perfectly still. So far, he seemed amused with her. She didn’t want to anger him.

“Look at me,” he ordered, his voice gruffer now.

She didn’t dare ignore him. He pulled something from his pocket.

Hallie shuddered in revulsion at the sight of the simple white collar with its silver latch. “No. Please.”

“Sh,” he whispered. His lips, surprisingly soft and gentle, pressed against hers in a chaste kiss. She tried to struggle beneath him but he was just too powerful. The collar encircled her neck, not very tightly, and locked into place. Silent tears dripped from her eyes and spilled onto her cheeks as his lips hovered near her ear.

“Mine.”

***Swing by next Friday, March 22, for the second half of this hot opening scene!***