Friday, November 29, 2013

FREE best-sellers at ARe Romance Books @DenyseBridger #RomFantasy

Get 'em while they're FREE!!

#1 Best-seller for over a year on the publisher site, FREE today, Cinderella for the more grown-up taste:

FREE today, another ARe best-seller, sexy, desert island ménage:

My newest ARe best-seller, FREE today, pirates and fantasy worlds:

FREE today at ARe Romance Books, vampires and ménage HEAT:

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Semi-Finalist in Cover Contest @DenyseBridger #RomFantasy

Hey everyone, as you can see, my GORGEOUS book cover has made the semi-finals. So, you know what's coming next, I'm sure! If you have a moment, would you vote?

There's no signing in needed! Below the book description, there's a section with my picture, and there is a row of stars showing - just a click on the last star in the row, and your vote is counted! Thank you everyone.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Friday, November 22, 2013

Unexpected Find @Nancy_Corrigan #RomFantasy

Available now at Amazon

The birth of the Royals…

A lot of people have asked me where I came up with the idea for my spin on shape-shifters. I wish I had one simple thing I could point to and say there, that’s where my idea came from. I can’t. A combination of things influenced me. My love of big cats (tigers, lions and jaguars in particular) gave me a start and when I couldn’t decide which one I wanted to write about, I decided to include them all. That got me to thinking. What would it feel like to not only shift into a big predator but to have three of them sharing your body and soul? Talk about internal dilemmas and split personalities. Cats are territorial so having three with their own wants and desires would require a hero that was strong enough to bring them to heel and dominant enough to harness all their instincts.

My Royals were born—intensely possessive and driven by their primal drives. When they find their chosen female, they don’t mind focusing all their attentions on claiming her and are persistent enough to show her how satisfying being a Royal’s mate can be.

Unexpected Find blurb
Royal Pride, Book 1

Since the murder of her best friend, Jazz is stuck in a safe but lonely way of life. She’s willing to sacrifice everything to keep herself and her family safe from the shifter world. The sexy stranger who struts into her friend’s bar changes all that. From the first glance Jazz knows she’s sunk—their chemistry sizzles from across the room, it’ll be undeniable up close.

Jazz is the most beautiful female Rafe has ever seen and he wants her from the second he sets eyes on her. The depth of the need that swamps him every time he’s near her surprises him. It takes every last ounce of his self control not to pounce on Jazz and make her his. Only her distrust of his shifter nature holds him back. He counts it as a win every time his beloved human gives in to their passion and takes him to her bed. But Rafe’s patience isn’t infinite and he’ll do whatever it takes, face any danger—past or present—to ensure that Jazz becomes his. Forever.

Royal Pride series blurb

As multi-feline shifters, Royals—the privileged descendants of the gods—live with the wants and demands of the animal spirits sharing their bodies. Everything is more intense for a Royal—their primal drives, possessiveness and lusts. Exotically beautiful and strong, these immortals never lack companionship but once their mating instincts are triggered, nothing sways their devotion or dims their desire.

Their dominant nature demands they claim their female’s body and soul, ensuring their chosen one knows exactly to whom they belong. Once marked as a Royal’s beloved, their women realize how wickedly satisfying life can be with a mate focused on meeting their every need.


The butterflies in Jazz’s belly took flight. The man was a romantic. “You know, I’m starting to enjoy the odd way you talk. It makes me feel as if I walked into a world where princesses wait to be swept away by their knight in shining armor.”

Rafe grinned, the sad look replaced by amusement. Releasing her hands, he slid his around her waist. “You would make a beautiful princess.”

“Would I?”

“One to be fought for.” He twirled a lock of her hair around a finger. “What about me? Would I fill the role of your knight in shining armor?”

She smiled, completely charmed by this man. She ran her hands over his chest, luxuriated in the layers of muscle under her palms. “I don’t know if any horse would be able to carry you for long. I see you more as a warrior, a conqueror.”

“One who demands the bonny ladies as his reward after a battle?” He swept her into his arms. She gasped and grabbed his shoulders. Lust heated his eyes as he mapped her face. “Oh yes, I like this fantasy and in it I get to choose you as my booty.” He bent his head closer so his golden eyes filled her vision. “I think I might keep you, Jasmine.”

Her breath hitched. “I think you have a wild imagination.”

“Or a hopeful one.” He eased back but watched her with that focused gaze she was starting to associate with him. “I want you.”

The lust-hazed glint to his eyes told her exactly what he wanted. For once in her life, she did too—but it couldn’t happen. She had responsibilities. Spontaneity and motherhood did not mesh. The little episode in Josh’s office proved that. She would’ve been mortified if Sara walked in while they were having sex. Everyone in town would’ve known within the hour. The other playgroup moms would find out, maybe shun her or at least look at her negatively. No. Any liaisons she had would have to be planned and kept hidden.

She licked her upper lip. “I haven’t had sex in a really long time, Rafe.” She dropped her gaze and stared at his chin. “What we did tonight wasn’t like me either. I’m not like that. Easy.”

He brushed his lips over her forehead. “I know.” He set her on her feet and took her hand. “Come, let’s get you home.” 

Visit Nancy here:

About Me

I've always been an avid reader and encourage everyone to escape the hectic daily grind with a few minutes a day in your favorite book.

I'm lucky enough to share my cat's home with my three wonderful children, husband, dog and snake. When not writing, I work as a chemist in a pharmaceutical lab.

My passions beyond reading and family include music, classic cars, tattoos and animals (all of which have found their way into my writing in one form or another).

So that's a little bit about me...

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Book Blast/Contest: An Inner Fire @jackidelecki #RomFantasy

by Jacki Delecki



Grayce Walters, animal acupuncturist, harbors a secret. She hides her intuitive gifts from the world until she becomes embroiled in arson on Seattle’s waterfront.

As a key crime witness, Grayce must convince the attractive, logical, by-the-numbers fire investigator, Ewan Davis,that the fire she witnessed is part of a larger criminal conspiracy. Grayce embarks upon a mission to gather proof of the dangerous threat. She enlists the help of her cross-dressing best friend, her street-wise assistant, and Davis’ poodle, to conduct her own investigation.

As her feelings for Davis shift between white hot passion and cold fear, Grayce must risk exposing her secrets to save Davis’ life. Davis must accept things, he can neither see, nor understand to solve the mystery and finally find the love he has stopped believing in.

With nudges from the protective poodle, Grayce and Davis confront shocking betrayal and international crime on the rain soaked streets of Seattle.



 “Grayce, you’re exhausted. You had a big week, your trip to LA. You need to get some rest. I’m going to take you home.”

“I am tired but something is wrong. When I’m with you, I experience overwhelming sensations. I know you’re in danger.”

He pulled both her hands back into his, he had to touch her. “Grayce, you’re absolutely right. I’m in danger, but not from that thug.”

Her whole body stiffened. “Someone else has threatened you?”
He squeezed her hands and gazed into her eyes, trying to communicate his need for her. “Yes, there is a person who is a threat to me.”

 She gasped. “Who?”

I’m not tense from the investigation but from trying to deny what is between us. Don’t you know when we’re together the room vibrates? All those sensations you’re feeling are between us.”


 He didn’t usually have to convince women they were attracted to him. Grayce definitely needed some convincing, judging by the astonishment in her voice.

“All the strain is us trying to ignore what’s happening.”

“You think everything I’m feeling is…is an attraction between us?”

By the shock on her face, Grayce wasn’t driven by desire for him.

 “Don’t worry, my feelings aren’t hurt.” At least, not that he would admit. “I’m going to give you time to realize what a wonderful guy I am.” He liked a challenge and convincing Grayce Walters was going to be a challenging pleasure.


AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Descended from a long line of storytellers, Jacki spins adventures filled with mystery, healing and romance.

Jacki’s love affair with the arts began at a young age and inspired her to train as a jazz singer and dancer. She has performed many acting roles with Seattle Opera Company and Pacific Northwest Ballet.

Jacki has set An Inner Fire in Seattle, her long-time home. The city’s unique and colorful locations are a backdrop for her romantic mystery.

Although writing now fills much of her day, she continues to volunteer for Seattle’s Ballet and Opera Companies and leads children’s tours of Pike Street Market. Her volunteer work with Seattle’s homeless shelters influenced one of her main characters in An Inner Fire.

Jacki’s two Golden Labs, Gus and Talley, are her constant companions. Their years of devotion and intuition inspired her to write dogs as main characters alongside her strong heroines.

A geek at heart, Jacki loves superhero movies—a hero’s battle against insurmountable odds. But her heroines don’t have to wear a unitard to fight injustice and battle for the underdog.

Her debut novel, AN INNER FIRE, releases November 14, 2013 - and Jacki will be awarding a $25 Amazon GC and eBook copy of "An Inner Fire" to one randomly drawn commenter and to one randomly drawn host during the tour.



Monday, November 18, 2013

Random Acts of Sex and Romance: Mirror Mirror #RomFantasy

Written by a friend of mine, this is a sweet, sensual, totally sexy little short... enjoy it!

Random Acts of Sex and Romance: Mirror Mirror #RomFantasy: Mirror Mirror by A. Austin Cade Maddox heard the soft sounds of jazz music playing throughout the industrial penthouse as he stepped t...

Friday, November 15, 2013

Silver Bells Holiday Giveaway @DenyseBridger #RomFantasy

Silver Bells - a romantic Duet
Sensual Romance - Historical Western and contemporary

BUY it here: 

Connected by several generations of family tradition, a gift originally given back in 1878 finds its way into the hands and heart of the newest addition to the Hamilton family. The silver bell earrings are an heirloom blessed by love, and once again the magic of the holiday combines with the magic of the heart to unite lovers touched by Destiny.

A Second Chance by Denysé Bridger
(Historical Western romance)

Enroute back to his home in Montana, Joshua Hamilton is bushwhacked and left for dead. As stubborn as he is strong, Josh makes his way to the nearest homestead, and meets Sara Grant. Left alone after travelling to reside with her brother and his wife only to lose them to illness, Sara nurses Joshua back to health, all the while trying to deny the tender awakening of love. As the holiday approaches, danger arrives to threaten the future they haven't even begun to share.

A Christmas for Beginnings by Brigit Aine
(Contemporary erotic)

Stephanie is worried that starting over, by moving to Wyoming to work for a guy she's never even talked to, might be a bit extreme. Cole doesn't know what to expect from his new cook, but he hopes to take some of the work load off his mom. Together, they learn that fate is at work, and with a little Christmas Magick, all will be well.

An excerpt from A SECOND CHANCE:

Joshua feigned slumber as he watched her move around the quiet cabin. She kept the small place immaculate, and he sensed a peace in the atmosphere that he’d rarely encountered in his life. Only once had he felt this safe in a home, and that was a time he preferred not to look back on.

“Are you hungry this morning, Mr. Hamilton?”

He smiled at her words, then opened his eyes fully.

“How’d you know I was awake?”

She returned the smile and came to stand next to the bed.

“You’ve been here for most of a week now,” she explained, lifting the blankets to look at the bandaging that was wrapped around his waist, the bulkiest section against the right side of his back. “I can hear the changes in your breathing. I know when your dreams are terrorizing you, and when they’re not.”

He didn’t look terribly pleased with the observation.

“You haven’t answered my question, Mr. Hamilton,” she pointed out when she’d tidied the bedding and was standing upright again.

“Joshua,” he requested. “Call me Joshua.” He shifted in the bed, tossed aside the sheet and blanket, then gave her an icy look. “I assume you’ve still got my clothes, madam?”

She nodded.

“It’s Sara,” she said firmly. “Your clothes are just fine, Joshua. And, your gun is right there,” she pointed, and he glanced at the shell belt and the holstered weapon where they hung from one of the posts of the brass-trimmed headboard. She pulled a curtain and gave him privacy that was more courtesy than necessity.

She kept her ears attuned to the sounds of his movement, and forced herself not to run when she heard him stumble, then sit heavily on the bed. His breathing worried her.

“Are you all right, Mr...? Joshua,” she corrected automatically.

There was no answer. She listened, heard him stand, then he fell. She ran to the other side of the room, flung aside the curtain, and sighed in dismay. Half-naked and glistening with sweat from his exertions; Joshua’s strength had deserted him halfway into the process of getting dressed.

She coaxed him back onto the bed with physical effort and gentle words, fully cognizant of his virtual lack of understanding. He passed out as soon as he was flat on the mattress again.

* * *

Sara’s frown deepened without her knowing it as she left the barn and walked slowly back to her cabin. She’d tended his horse as carefully as she had the man himself, and was beginning to worry about the continued bouts of fever and sickness that were showing no signs of diminishing. She’d suggested riding to the nearby town of Silver Creek for a doctor, but he’d been so adamant with his refusal, she’d relented against her better judgement.

She opened the door to the cabin and went inside. When her eyes adjusted to the shadows, she spotted him sitting up in the bed, gazing out the window. His head turned the moment she came fully in and he was watching her in thoughtful silence.

“How long have I been here?”

It was a question he asked each time he regained consciousness and was without the maddened fever.

“Six days,” she replied quietly.

His look moved back to the window, and the distant range of mountains.

“Thank you, Sara,” he said after a nod and a lengthy pause. He felt her next to him and shifted his gaze from the window to her again. She was a pretty woman, he noted, really seeing her for the first time. Sara was like him in colour, fair-haired without being blonde, eyes not quite hazel, but blue-green in shade, and she was willowy slender; deceptive in her appearance of being fragile, he knew. In her quiet, watchful eyes he felt compassion and caring.

“Is there anyone I should be notifying about your presence here?” she asked cautiously.

He almost smiled, then shook his head.

“Someone somewhere must love you, Joshua Hamilton,” she spoke the words before she could think not to, and his hazel eyes sharpened with a flash of anger.

“I’m sorry,” she apologized quickly. “Your life is not my business.”

When she would have walked away, Joshua grabbed her hand and made her look at him again.

“I owe you my life,” he said with a small smile, irony in his steady tone.

She laughed very softly.

“I don’t think so. You’re as stubborn a man as any I’ve ever met. I think you’re just not ready to die, so nothing’s going to change your mind.” For the first time, Joshua really smiled and she was struck again by his attractiveness. “You still can’t get up, however,” she admonished firmly. “Not for a few days, at least.”

“I can make it to the table, Sara,” he objected.

Their eyes clashed as they stared at each other, but Joshua won that battle of wills. She nodded, reluctantly, and offered wordless support once he’d pulled on his pants and had his shirt over his shoulders. He was gasping for breath when he crossed the room and collapsed on a chair at the table.

Sara pretended not to notice.

“Do you think you can eat now?”

He looked for something other than enquiry in that question, but there was nothing in her eyes that revealed the sarcasm he instinctively felt was behind the words.

“Have you got any whiskey?”

“No,” she smiled and made no effort at all to hide the faint derision his request incited. “I used the last of it on your back. Probably the best use it’s ever had.”

“Coffee?” he revised, grin now solidly in place.

“Coffee I can supply,” she assured amiably and went to get the pot from the top of the stove.

* * *

The fever had returned shortly after sunset, and Sara was watching from her makeshift bed a few feet from the tossing, restless man tangled in the sheets. He’d sapped his strength throughout the day, obstinately refusing to go back to bed. The chills had started after supper, then the fever came back with a vengeance. He was suffering the demons that haunted his dreams, too, she noted with uneasy fear. He talked a lot when he was delirious with fever. Most of what he talked about was terrifying.

Sara had moved from the cabin’s single bedroom the first night he’d spent in her home. She’d been afraid to leave him, fearing he’d die throughout that long night. Joshua had been put in the bed that was curtained off on the opposite side of the cabin; the makeshift bedroom that had been hers when Jim and Eve were alive and in the only bedroom. She mentally veered away from those reminiscences and concentrated on the man in the bed. She felt the subtle change before she saw the evidence her eyes needed to be certain.
He tried to get up.

Sara rose instantly, then ran to sit on the edge of the mattress. She ran a caressing stroke across his forehead and whispered his name. His skin was hot, the fever scorching it’s way insidiously into his brain, creating demons and terrors that she didn’t want to think about. Anything that could scare a man like Joshua Hamilton wasn’t something she much cared to contemplate.
“Joshua,” she whispered, catching his hand when it flailed wildly in an attempt to push away whatever was chasing him inside his mind. She turned aside, sank her hands into the chilled water in the bowl that still stood on the small table. As she began to wring the water from the compress she felt his hands encircle her waist and pull her downward. The cold rag hit the floor with a wet plop and she was suddenly wrestling with the delirious man.

“Joshua, stop it...”

He twisted, pinned her under him and her heart felt like it wanted to spring from her chest when she saw the inferno that lit his light hazel eyes. The brightness of fever was there, but beyond it was something equally potent.

“Stop this,” she reasserted.

Joshua ignored her and her breath deserted her when his head descended and his mouth covered hers in a kiss that made her entire body quiver with fright.

“Mr. Hamilton, don’t,” she pleaded long moments later. He was gentle now, his hands exploring as he murmured endearments and soft, pleasant sounds–all things meant for another woman. The woman he talked about so often in his delirium.

“I’m not your Sarah, Joshua,” she said quietly, forcing her voice to a steadiness that was sheer effort of will. “Look at me,” she demanded softly. “I’m Sara Grant, not Sarah Hamilton.”

For an impossible moment she thought he hadn’t heard her, then his head rose from her neck and he stared down at her. The raw  torture she glimpsed made her regret her own defense for a few timeless seconds. He was a strong, driven man; the internal blaze was extinguished, his eyes shuttered and guarded as sanity returned with painful clarity.

“I’m sorry, Sara,” he whispered, moving off her with a slow, heavy sigh. “I’m sorry...” He covered his eyes with his hands and tried to steady his strained gasps for air.

Sara forcibly resisted the desire to pull him close again and offer whatever comfort she could give to his scarred and bleeding soul. She knew he’d reject anything other than quiet dismissal of what had just happened.

“Try to sleep,” she murmured gently, and slid from the bed as unobtrusively as she could manage. She bent to retrieve the compress, dropped it back into the water and went to her blankets. As she walked, she pretended her knees weren’t shaking, and her heartbeat roaring so loudly within her that he could probably hear it from the other side of the room. He was still now, unnaturally so; she suspected he spent a great deal of time that way. He was too good at not moving.

“Would you like to talk about it?” she asked into the darkness.


There was enough finality in the single syllable to effectively end any further attempts at conversation for the night.

~ ~ ~

Ten days before Christmas, I will be choosing a random winner to send these lovely handmade earrings to. (The contest is open internationally.) All you have to do is leave a comment and tell us about your favourite holiday story or tradition. I hope you enjoy meeting the Hamilton family, and perhaps enjoying this Duet that ties the past to the present via a special gift given in love...the stuff of all great family traditions/heirlooms, of course!

BUY it here: 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Tea & Temptation - sneak peek at a WIP #RomFantasy

I thought I'd share a sneak peek at the opening of my newest work - the couple in this story is mature, both of them over fifty, and about to discover that love and passion aren't only for the young. I'd love to hear your thoughts on the idea, and the opening scene, so please feel free to comment!

Tea and Temptation

Lorina Marsh hadn’t meant to awaken so early, but one glance out the window captivated her attention and held it. The first blush of dawn tinted the eastern sky, painting the horizon in hues of pink and golden warmth. Like a bride waking next to her husband for the first time, the day was being born, new yet familiar, filled with possibilities. She chose to no longer see anything less than what could be achieved. The days of drudgery were over, and she was determined to keep it that way! Smiling, she flung back the bed covers and headed for the bathroom. Ten minutes later she was on her way out the door.

It was just after 6 AM when she entered the fog-shrouded park and went straight for a picnic table. She put down her coffee and used the seat to balance herself as she warmed up with a few muscle loosening stretches. When she felt the pleasant pull of her muscles was enough, she picked up the cup and sipped at the steaming beverage she’d brought with her. She sat for a moment and looked around. Most mornings the park was full of people like her, those out to get in a quick run, or walk, before heading to a day trapped in an office. There were fewer people today, the chill and the thick, curling mist hanging in the air made it feel mildly oppressive.

She finished her coffee, dropped the paper cup into the nearest recycling bin, and began a slow jog into the park’s center. Lori was never much for jogging and exercise, this new regime was part of the changes she was making. She’d spent most of her life taking care of others, helping, supporting, and generally being Cinderella in many ways. After the death of her father a few months earlier, she’d been left a small home, an insurance policy, and a second chance at a life she’d always dreamed about.

She took a deep breath and started a slow, easy run, taking a route she’d been enjoying for the past couple of weeks. She never pushed herself too hard, aware that the extra pounds she carried would make her tire much too quickly. While she wasn’t overly large, she was certainly on the curvy side of the scale.


Startled at hearing her name, she stopped her jog and turned just as Jacob Carson reached her. He bent, hands on his knees, and caught his breath. When he straightened again, he smiled down at her.

“Do you run in the park every day?”

She laughed. “It’s a new activity,” she remarked, tone self-deprecating. “As you can tell, I’m sure.”

Jacob’s look glanced over her and his smile deepened. “You look amazing to me, Lori.”

She felt the telltale heat of embarrassment stain her cheeks and shrugged it off. “Thank you,” she replied, feeling awkward and self-conscious. She looked at the trail again. “I don’t want to keep you from your run if you’re in the middle of it. I don’t move very fast, especially compared to the other runners here.”

“I’ve already been around the park twice,” he said with a grin. “I’d be happy to keep you company, if you’d like?”

Uncertain, and unused to the attention he was showing her, Lori was flustered for a moment. It must have shown, because Jacob smiled. “Maybe I should just leave you to enjoy your run,” he decided, and started to jog away. He turned back, still in motion, and called out to her, “I’ll see you at the shop in about an hour.”

She stared after him, watching him disappear quickly as he picked up speed. She felt far too let down. The idea of a jog, even at her slow pace, had lost its appeal. Sighing, she walked to a nearby bench and sat. Jacob Carson was renovating her new business premises, and causing heart palpitations in her best friend, Jenny. Lori tried not to pay too much attention to the attractive renovator, men like him had never taken much notice of her.

Jake was over six feet tall, and his sandy brown hair was streaked with threads of silver that didn’t show up until he was under the glaring florescent lights in the shop, or out in the afternoon sunshine. He was athletic and active, clearly looked after himself, and always had. The only weights Lorina had ever lifted were the books she escaped into every chance she got. Jake could pass for a rugged model.

Annoyed at her mental wanderings, she changed her mind about the run and decided to take at least one turn around the park before heading home.


Saturday, November 09, 2013

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Random Acts of Sex and Romance: First Glance #RomFantasy

Random Acts of Sex and Romance: First Glance: Earlier this year, I saw someone for the first time, a photograph. He is incredibly handsome, but it was something in his eyes that drew me...

Cindy and I are going to feature new fictions here on this site, and if you have something you think would fit, please contact us. While you're visiting, follow the blog, too - lots of wonderful stuff to come!!

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Ramblings and a new WIP! #RomFantasy @DenyseBridger

Time to place catch up with life. It’s been a strange week to say the least. It all began last Monday, when I did something as simple as take my car into the garage to have a fuel line checked… If I’d only known how that would turn out! Two days later the estimate to make my car (which you have to understand was running beautifully at this point, but was guzzling gas, which made me aware there was a leak) road-worthy again came in at $7200 – yes, you did read that correctly, over 7 grand. My car was old, I admit that, but Holy Hannah… Imagine my near heart attack while I stood there gaping?

In the week that followed, many scenarios were discussed, all of them workable, but the plan became wait until Spring and see about buying new. Or used new for me. What fun! Brother in law asked a simple question about choice of model, I decided to look into it – within three days, I was buying a new car. Took delivery yesterday! Wow Spring arrived quickly!!

However, during the week I was MIA, I missed a lot of stuff – a great TRS party, promotional things I’d signed for, and now I am slogging through mail, proposals, and trying hard to get caught up.

This is a business where a week in absentia can kill your momentum. I saw that when Facebook took down my fan page and disabled my profile for a week. The fan page never recovered, it’s still operating at approximately one TENTH the views and users it had only a couple of months ago. This is very disheartening. But, we can rebuild, right? *lol*

I’ve written up a list of work – titles that have been in progress awhile and are finally almost done. I have an amazing array of stories in the works that should appeal to many readers. Diversity is our friend, right? 2013 has already proven to be a very unpredictable year in terms of throwing out promises then everything falling to pieces. I try to remain the optimist, though, and that’s why I’m not quite ready to call it quits yet.

Let me share with you a scene from my next work, this one is roughly half done, and it’s my first shifter book. Please do let me know what you think, ok? 

Also, new sites for me are:


As the latest guest arrived and stared in wonder at his palace home, Vasya felt a tremor of excitement ripple his outwardly calm expression. Something in her stance, and her genuine love of what stood before her stirred recognition deep inside him, and he wondered if he’d finally found her.

“Your stillness is much more revealing than words,” a soft voice noted as his sister drew close and stood at his side. “Do you think this might be the one you have both been looking for?”

Vasya turned away with reluctance and faced his lovely sister. He shrugged, the gesture simple and elegant. “She may be, something about her feels different to the others who have accepted our invitations. I want you to stay close to her, Antoinetta,” he requested. “If she is the right woman, you know he will try to take her from here before she knows why she has come halfway around the world purely on instinct.”

“When does Patrizio arrive?”

Vasya smiled, the expression devoid of warmth. “When it will be of best advantage. I would guess he has been watching to see who is coming to the Palace. If this is the right woman, he will be here soon enough.”

“Will you be able to protect her?”

“I hope so.” He closed his eyes for a second, and drew in a heavy breath. “She will have to want me to. There is no other way.”

He stared at her, his eyes a mirror to the sadness in his soul.

“Cabrini is a very charming man, brother,” she reminded him, unnecessarily. “Just make sure you permit her to see the best of you.” She kissed his cheek. “Trust your heart this time, Vasya,” she advised. “If you do, you will never lose to him.”

“We mate for life, remember? If Carla had been truly mine, he would never have persuaded her to leave with him.”

“She chose her death,” Antoinetta stated flatly, careful to contain her anger. “You know this. The past is long past now, leave it there. This is meant to be a new beginning for you, Vasya.”

He nodded and reached out to hug her close, then kissed the top of her head.
“You are right, as usual. Shall we greet our newest guest together?”

“Why not allow me to meet her, and you prepare for tonight?”

There was wisdom in her suggestion, as well as honest love, and his nodded, his smile one of ironic amusement. A moment later, he was alone with his demons again, and a growing restlessness that would only be soothed by the passion of true mating.

* * *

“It is a pleasure to meet you Signorina Townsend,” Antoinetta said as she descended the last steps of the curving staircase. The palace was a place in all ways and the grandeur was overwhelming to someone not used to opulence. Riella Townsend was staring in combined awe and disbelief, her open admiration making Antoinetta’s smile even warmer as she approached the latest arrival.

“This place really is a Palace of Dreams,” Riella breathed softly.

“Vasya has spent a lifetime making it a place of beauty,” the other woman agreed. “Tonight’s ball is our first in many years.”

“Why did he invite me to this party?” It was a question Riella had wondered about from the moment the invitation had arrived, and no answer she’d imagined had been satisfactory to explain why a man from the other side of the Atlantic Ocean would ask her to a Masquerade in Venice, let alone send her the tickets and make all the arrangements for her trip.

Antoinetta shrugged. “I have learned not to question my brother’s decisions, or ask for explanations. Vasya does as he wishes, and he rarely makes errors in his judgements.” Her smile emerged again and she leaned forward to kiss Riella’s cheeks. “I have things I must attend to before tonight, signorina, so I will see you later. If you require anything, do not hesitate to ask.”

Friday, November 01, 2013

NEW Interview with CTR @DenyseBridger #RomFantasy

I did a wonderful new interview with the folks at Coffeetime Romance recently, and it's just been posted. So, if you have a few minutes, drop by!!