Sunday, March 11, 2018

Valentine Release Day & Giveaway - Michelle Hughes

Tweet: #MrValentine is ready to seduce you.  Pick him up now on Amazon: or your favorite book store
Grace Parker's new boss is a sadist. Wealthy, gorgeous, intimidating, and cocky.  A man she should run away from.  Virginal Grace Parker isn’t the kind of woman Dimitri Valentine likes to seduce into his world of dark passions. But what started out as a game soon turns into the challenge of his life as Grace refuses to submit to his will.

Determined to have her surrender, seducing the innocent beauty becomes his obsession. Grace has other ideas.  Self-labeled as asexual, Grace has no desire to become the next pawn in his parade of broken hearts. Tempting her with deviant pleasures of the flesh, it becomes a battle of wills. The only question in the end, is who is surrendering to who?

Valentine – Sometimes love hurts so good.  

The sound of the door closing makes me tense.  He’s here.  Where else would he be?  It’s his house.  This was probably the biggest mistake of my life. He doesn’t speak, simply walks away, and I have two choices.  I can either follow or leave and never look back.  The latter would be smarter.  I take the foolish route.  He leads me to the center of a breathtaking room that has me glancing around in wonder and awe.
      “Kneel.”  I don’t question why, I listen.  Before I know it, I’m paying homage on the cool marble floor, hands behind my back with my fingers intertwined.  My stomach clenches as I hear his footsteps moving closer. My eyes close as I fight for the strength to ignore my fears.
        A part of me wants to stand up and run from the room.  I’m fully dressed but I’ve never felt so vulnerable in my life.  Without warning he covers my eyes with a blindfold, taking away my option to open them for assurance.  Without my sense of sight, my other senses take prominence.  The smell of his cologne, the faintest hint of his movement, the longing for even the slightest touch.  My heart is racing, and I can’t catch my breath.
     “Stand.”  The strength in that single spoken word makes me tremble as I find my feet.  I know the beauty of the man that gave the directive. Even in my fear, I imagine the pleasure of having his long fingers trace down my cheek again.  It was the only touch I’d had from him, but tonight that could change.
“Take off your shirt.”  I startle as his deep, hypnotic voice gives me the order, yet there’s no hesitation in my movements.  Removing that barrier gives him more power, and I offer it willingly.  The inherent shyness I feel is pushed aside for his pleasure. My fingers fumble   as I pull it over my head, casting aside my doubts along with the material.
“Your bra as well.”  I can feel the heat of his breath whispering into my ear, telling me he’s standing right behind me. My nervousness intensifies.  Reaching back, I undo the clasp and force my fingers to work both the straps off my shoulders.  It falls to the ground.
“Turn.”  A part of me wants to refuse out of modesty, no man has seen me this way before.  My body doesn’t hesitate though.  Lowering my head in embarrassment at revealing myself, I search for inner strength.
“Chin up.”  He’s disappointed in my weakness.  Quickly, I do as he asks, wetting my dry lips with the tip of my tongue. Refusing to cower from my nudity, was a lesson I needed to learn.  “Good.  Now the skirt.”
 His praise spreads warmth through my body, while his command demands more. I want to beg for a reprieve, a moment to gather my thoughts. I know it will disappoint him, so I continue. Sliding the zipper down on my skirt slowly, I allow it to slip down my shaking legs, and step out carefully.  Standing before him in only three-inch heels and a lacy thong, I’d never felt so bare.
 “Pinch your nipples.”  The request startles me, and for a moment, I hesitate. “Now.” He didn’t raise his voice instead he lowered it, yet my fingers flew to do his bidding.  The deep baritone of his tone speaks to my senses in a way that defies reasoning.
My breasts feel heavy, and my breathing becomes labored.  Warring emotions of fear and excitement battle inside, and I don’t know which is more prominent. Shifting my weight as the wetness pooling between my legs grows uncomfortable, I realize my concerns no longer matter.  This turned me on. He spoke to some hidden part of myself that had been locked away.  I couldn’t comprehend why I wanted to belong to this man who was still a stranger to me.  My body understood.
I heard his movements as he stepped behind me, then felt the warmth of his breath in my ear as he spoke again.  “Is this still what you want?” My mouth was so dry I wasn’t sure I could speak. Physically I wanted this with every fiber of my being, mentally I was afraid and wondering what I’d gotten myself into. 
Those beautiful fingers grazed my cheek lightly as I hesitated to speak and without explanation, I whimpered.  How was it possible to ache for a touch so desperately?  The hold he had on me was terrifying.  So why was I putting myself through this?  I knew the answer.  No man had kindled the fire in my soul the way he did.  “Yes.” There could be no other reply but that one.
“Panties off. Then kneel.” The demand was given softly, with a sensual drawl that made me come alive in ways I’d never fathomed.  His hand gently fell to the top of my head and he caressed my hair. I was instantly enthralled.  When he removed that contact I felt bereft.  “I will own you.”

Chapter One
 “I can’t believe I let you talk me into this.” Lina might be my best friend, but she was blackmailing me in the worst possible way.  Maybe that was being a little dramatic, but not by much.  I called off one Saturday night and made a promise to do anything if she’d cover for me.  That led me to this insanity we were about to walk into.
 Her laugh was filled with retaliation and I made a mental promise to get even with her later.  “Stop being such a prude. It’s not like I’m asking you to get naked and let some man spank you.  Although.”  Her words trailed off and I slapped her arm playfully.
“Don’t even think about it.  You and your weird kinky tendencies are lucky I’m even walking through the door of this place.”  I loved her, but I had no idea how she got off on being someone’s punching bag.  The thought of some man spanking me made me want to throw up.  For that matter, even thinking of a guy touching me without spanking made me nauseated. 
“There’s nothing wrong with a little kink in life.  Just because you’re afraid of sex, don’t go knocking how I get my kicks.”  If we hadn’t been best friends forever I’d have thought I insulted her, but her grin said otherwise.  Lina didn’t give a damn what anyone thought.  One of the many reasons I loved her.
“I’m not afraid of sex, I just have no desire to do it.”  In my teenage years I’d worried something was wrong with me, because all my friends were screwing around.  I labeled myself as asexual after high school and the issue didn’t bother me.  Much.  Physically I was in perfect shape and mentally I hadn’t suffered any type of abuse that could make me the way I was. I simply wasn’t interested in sex.
“Whatever.  Someday, a guy, or hell maybe a girl is going to rock your world and you’ll never be the same again.”  Lina believed what she was saying, and who was I to say she wasn’t right?  You’d think at twenty-two if that was going to happen it already would have, though.
“You can psychoanalyze me later.  If we’re doing this, I want to get it over with.”  We were both seniors in college, soon to graduate.  She was majoring in psychology and I was studying forensic science.  This wasn’t the first time we’d had this conversation, and I think she considered me her pet project.  The problem was I didn’t need fixing.  I was perfectly happy being who I am.
“So eager to dwell in my debauchery, are you?”  She was laughing again as we got out of the car and walked to the large brownstone before us.  I’d never visited her BDSM club, but I knew it would be like pulling teeth seeing all the disgusting acts going on in there.  She’d described them in detail every weekend when she returned to the dorm.  It didn’t matter that I had no interest in the subject.
The outside didn’t look like the porno shop I’d expected.  This place could have been a library it was so ordinary.  Lina had tried to get me to come with her for years, and I’d always turned her down.  Leave it to her to use the excuse of her working for me one night to make this the payback.  We both worked full time at our school bookstore to cover what our scholarships wouldn’t pay on tuition. “Remind me to never get sick again.”
We approached the front door, and a huge man with bulging biceps in a black t-shirt smiled at Lina.  “Good to see you, girl.”  His wide smile made him seem less intimidating than his size and when she smiled back and gave a wink, I assumed they were on good terms.
“Did you miss me?” Lina’s hand rested on one of his large arms, and there was no denying the lust in his eyes.  She was a beautiful woman and had the confidence to prove it.  It was so strange to me that she considered herself submissive, when I’d never seen her back down from anyone.
“You know it.  Who’s your friend?” Opening the door for us, we walked inside the deserted foyer. The man’s attention turned to me and my face immediately heated.  I hated being the center of attention, so I looked down to break his gaze.  People in general made me nervous, but that was a problem I was working on. I knew dealing with people would be part of my job when I graduated and was determined to succeed.
“My best friend, Grace.  She’s here to be my cheerleader tonight.”  Lina wrapped her arm in mine and I was happy for the security blanket.  She could be a good friend, sometimes.  “This is Tommy.  If anyone makes you uncomfortable, he’ll make sure you’re okay.”
“Nice to meet you.”  I mumbled the words softly under my breath. 
“You too.  I need to see some ID.”  I didn’t hesitate in pulling out my driver’s license and handing it over.  “Had to make sure you’re legal.” He smiled and handed it back.
I wasn’t offended.  At barely five feet, I’d been told many time I still looked like a teenager.  I was only a hundred pounds, because I couldn’t gain weight, which didn’t help me look my age either.  He pulled out a piece of paper from underneath the counter.  “You have to sign this to enter.”
I looked at the form, then at Lina in confusion. “It says you will never talk about anything that goes on behind these walls.”  I took the pen Tommy held out and scribbled my name on it.  I was thinking there was no way in hell I’d tell anyone I visited this place, much less discuss who did what here.
Lina pulled me down the long, carpeted hallway and waved to Tommy. My eyes were riveted on the d├ęcor around us.  For a club, this seemed very high scale and not what I’d been expecting.  Crystal sconces lined the walls, and dark, ruby-red carpeting ended at a set of huge, wooden doors.
“Get ready to have your world turned upside down.”  Lina’s cheerful tone made me worry, and when she opened the door, I knew I was right to feel that way.
The room we entered was the size of half a football field and there were half-naked people attached to all kinds of weird furniture.  My soft gasp made Lina laugh as she pulled me deeper into the chaos.  Moans of pleasure and pain echoed off the walls, and my widening eyes took in all the scenery. 
I’m not sure what I thought I’d see, but people being whipped, paddled, and even tortured with a cane was so far out of my comfort zone, I was stunned.  That was only on one side of the room.  On the other, people were playing with fire and medical equipment in ways that no hospital would ever allow.  I was curious and disgusted at the same time.  There was one thing obviously clear. I didn’t belong in this place! 
“You let people do this stuff to you?”  Seeing it and hearing about were two different things.  I couldn’t believe Lina would let herself be involved in scenes like this.
“Certain people, and don’t judge so quickly.  There’s great pleasure in submitting to pain this way.”  My mouth fell open as she led us over to a couple placing needles underneath a bound man’s skin.  Granted the sticks weren’t that deep but it didn’t look pleasurable to me.
“This is too much.”  I turned away from that scene and watched a man bring a whip across a woman’s back while she was hooked to something that resembled a cross.  Her moans of pleasure were at odds with the object falling on her flesh and I wondered how it made her feel good when it looked rather painful. 
“It’s called a flogger.  It feels like a heavy pressure against your back when it lands.”  So, the whips had different names.  That was knowledge I’d never need, but it wasn’t as sickening as the needles, so I watched curiously.
“Do you want to try it out?” Lina had lost her mind asking me a question like that and I turned to her in wide-eyed shock.
“Uh. No, I’ll pass.”  The woman had her shirt off and her breasts were seen by everyone in the room.  While I might be curious about the pain pleasure aspect of what they were doing, I had no desire to be the one receiving it.
“I can’t believe he’s here.”  Lina’s voice was laced with excitement and I followed her eyes to the back of the room where a large stage was placed.  Sitting in a high-backed chair, was the most beautiful man I’d ever seen.
“Who’s that?” Trying to keep the interest out of my voice, my eyes locked onto him and I wasn’t blind. He was the persona of masculine beauty.  Long legs, encased in black slacks, moved up to a white shirt with rolled up sleeves showing off arms of a man that worked out but not sickeningly muscled.  His long fingers tapped on one side of the chairs arm, almost methodically, as a woman began undressing before him.
“Dmitri Valentine.”  Lina’s voice was filled with breathless anticipation, and why wouldn’t it be.  The man’s face was startlingly handsome, with a strong jaw and full lips that were currently lifted slightly in a smirk.  “That’s one man I’d kneel before any day of the week, but so would any other woman here.”  The despondence in her voice shocked me.  If there was one thing I knew about my best friend, it was that men didn’t turn her down.
  When his eyes lifted to mine, I quickly turned my head away in embarrassment.  The last thing I wanted to do was be caught ogling the handsome pervert.  “You mean you haven’t worked your charms on him yet?”  I felt my stomach clench nervously at the strange feelings he brought out in me. It made me confused.
“He’s out of my league.”  Lina being humble was a new one for me.  Sure, the man was devastatingly gorgeous, but she was beautiful and a catch any man would love to have.  He was an idiot if he didn’t think so.
I wanted to look at him again, but I refused.  “I call bullshit?  I thought you wrote the book on seducing men.” I suddenly felt the need to babble, and usually I was a quiet person.  “Maybe we should leave?”  The desire to catch his eyes again was almost overwhelming, and I’d never felt that way about anyone.
“What’s wrong?”  Lina’s concern was immediate, and I didn’t want her to know that I found him attractive.  Balling my hands into fists, I turned away from the temptation, ignoring her question.  “Has someone finally caught your eye?” Her gasp was warranted, but I didn’t like that she’d read my interest.  “Dmitri?” Her soft laugh wasn’t helping my confused mind and I bristled.
“I really want to leave.”  I’d walked through the door, and our deal was done.  For my peace of mind, I needed to escape.  It had to be the deviance of this place making me feel these things.  I’d seen hundreds of gorgeous men and not one of them had turned my head.
“Fine.  As soon as you tell me why you’re running away.”  Lina’s face was filled with delight, and I wanted to scream at her to back off but knew she wouldn’t let it go.
“Okay.  Fine.  I find him attractive.  Now, can we go?” It was just this environment.  Once we left I’d never think about the handsome stranger again.
“Of all the people.”  Lina was shaking her head.  “Before I take you out of here, you might want to turn around.”  Her voice had lowered to a whisper and a sense of foreboding overcame me.  The last thing I wanted to do was look back at the man, but I couldn’t seem to help myself.
Before I could talk myself out of it, I turned and saw the man that proved I wasn’t as asexual as I thought, moving toward us.  My heart raced in my chest, and I couldn’t lower my eyes, no matter how badly I wanted to.  His dark blue gaze held me in place and seemed to reach inside my soul, uncovering all my secret thoughts.
“Evening.”  The sultry tone of his voice made my knees shake and I couldn’t utter a single word.  My mouth opened but nothing came out. Biting my lip hard, I felt frozen in place and the world as I knew it ceased to exist.
“She’s a little shy.”  Lina’s voice trembled in awe, and I had the bizarre thought that he was some kind of sorcerer.  I knew that was fantasy, but he had a magnetic pull that couldn’t be denied.
“Lina, correct?”  He only spoke a few words, but his eyes held a depth that spoke of intelligence and strength.  He spoke to my friend while never looking away from me.
“Yes, sir.”  The title of respect seemed to fit him, and I was staring like some lovesick teenager.  “This is Grace.” 
“Yes, she is.”  I wanted to break the spell he had over me, but he lifted my hand so quickly that I gasped and when his lips landed on the top, I felt a surge of electricity move through me that made me whimper.  Never in my life had I felt so out of control.
“Where’s the restroom?”  I forced myself to break eye contact and pulled my hand from his in self-preservation. I was terrified of this spell he’d woven, and my fight or flight instinct took over.
An amused smirk found his lips, and I was so embarrassed my face flushed hotly.  “Running away already, little beauty?”  Mortified at being read so easily, I nodded.
“Yes. No.  I’m sorry.  I can’t talk to you.”  Turning away, I walked hastily back toward the exit, leaving Lina behind in my need to escape.  Walking out the huge wooden door, I collided into the big bouncer’s chest.
“Everything okay there, sweetheart.”  Tommy looked at me with concern, and any other time I would have been nervous about talking to a strange man but for some reason I was craving comfort. My eyes filled with tears. 
The confusion was so profound that my emotions couldn’t handle the odd meeting.  Shaking my head, no, I moved toward the exit, struggling to open the door.  I didn’t consider myself an emotional person before that moment and all these feelings flooding through me all at once, were too much.
“If someone is bothering you, tell me who it is, and I’ll straighten this out.”  The sympathy left his eyes and strength took its place.  He looked ready to handle anything.
 “It’s nothing.  I was a little overwhelmed, that’s all.”  I didn’t want this man defending me when there was nothing to defend.  Taking several deep breaths, I pulled myself together and realized how crazy I was acting.  “Would you mind getting my friend though, I’m ready to leave.” 
Where was Lina?  She had plenty of time to make her way out here and I was pissed that she hadn’t already come.  She was the strong one, and as much as I didn’t like admitting it, fought my battles for me.  Her deserting me now was almost treason to our friendship. Crossing my arms over my chest, I hugged myself tightly trying to stop myself from shivering.
“Sure.  Will you be okay here by yourself?”  The concern was back in his eyes, and I felt bad for causing him worry.
“Seriously, I’m fine.  Like I said, just a little overwhelmed.  My first time in a place like this.”  It wasn’t exactly a lie, the club was shocking, but that wasn’t why I needed to leave so fast.
Recognition filled his face and he grinned. “That’s okay.  The first time I saw some of this shit I was freaked out too.”  I couldn’t imagine the big biker looking man being afraid of anything, but it was nice of him to say that. He smiled before walking into the chaos I’d just come from.
Alone in the hall, I was able to get my confusing emotions in check.  Without the gorgeous stranger here making me feel like I was losing my mind, I realized how badly I’d overreacted.  Thankfully, I’d never have to see him again.  A million excuses for my actions flittered through my mind:  the almost sex going on in the other room, the fact that I’d just finished some brutal final exams, and that I’d been living off four hours sleep a night for the last semester.  All valid excuses, that would make anyone a little on edge.
Tommy returned with Lina on his arm, and I glared at her with the anger I felt.  She held her hands up in self-defense.  “Valentine wanted to talk, and you don’t just ignore that man.”  She didn’t look apologetic at all.  In fact, she looked happy.  Maybe he’d finally realized what a beauty she was.  For the first time in our friendship I was jealous.
“Whatever.  Can we leave now.”  I needed to get back to the dorms and forget I’d ever visited here.  If my best friend and the sexy stranger planned a hookup later, then so be it.  Even thinking that thought was like a punch in the gut and I wanted to put as much space between me and this place as possible.
“See you tomorrow night, Tommy.”  She reached up on her tip-toes to kiss his cheek and his answering smile was wide.
“Looking forward to it.  Nice to meet you, Grace.”  He winked at me and I forced a smile back not wanting to be rude.  Finally, we were walking back to the safety of my car.
I slid in behind the steering wheel, and Lina buckled her seatbelt before speaking.  “He wants to meet you.”  Her words made my fingers stop mid-air from placing the key in the ignition.  My heart raced in my chest and my hands begin to tremble.
“Because the first time went so well?” I didn’t even attempt to deny I knew who she meant and reverted to the sarcasm that was a crutch when I felt uncomfortable.
“Maybe he has a thing for awkward turtles?”  Lina’s voice was laced with humor, and normally I would have laughed at the title.  It was what I always called myself.  Tonight, it wasn’t funny.
I wouldn’t consider meeting with the enigmatic man again, and that was the end of it.  “Whatever he has a thing for, it won’t be me.  Let’s drop it.”  I slipped the key inside and turned the car over.  All I wanted was to put some distance between me and the biggest humiliation of my life. 
“It’s your call.  He gave me his card if you want the number, though.”  She pressed the button for the glove compartment and waggled it temptingly before putting it in.  It would’ve been childish to ask her to toss it out the window, so I didn’t say a word.  We drove back to the dorms in companionable silence and I was determined to forget I’d ever met Dmitri Valentine.
“Have you decided if you’re going to stay on for your Masters?”  I needed a change of subject and since we’d be graduating in a few weeks it seemed like a safer topic. She’d been bouncing back and forth about finding a job in the field and taking up her education further later, but still hadn’t made plans.
“I am.  But I have no intention of remaining in the dorms, so if you’re still interested in looking at apartments this summer, I’m game.” I felt relieved because I was worrying about making ends meet without us working together. New York was expensive as hell.
“Definitely! I plan on putting in applications everywhere now that classes are over.”  We still had to wait for our grades from the finals, but I didn’t have any concerns there.  My grade point average had never slipped below a 3.5.
“I’ll be able to keep my job here if I continue taking classes.  A bachelor’s degree in psychology is almost useless on its own.”  We’d talked about that many times, but Lina felt it was her calling and didn’t want to change major.
“I hope I can find something quick.”  I had some money put back, but with the insane cost of living it wouldn’t last long. 
“Any company would be crazy not to hire you.  You know more than the professors teaching the classes.”  I could have denied that, but it was true.  Math and science came as natural to me as breathing.  My mother was still disappointed that I wasn’t becoming a doctor.
“I have no experience in the field though.  I don’t want to get my hopes up.”  The truth was I had no idea what I’d do if I didn’t get a job in my field.  The idea of returning to mother’s apartment if I failed wasn’t an option.  I loved her, but her string of affairs since my father divorced her? It would drive me nuts if I had to see her with random men.
We pulled into the parking lot and made our way into the dorm building.  It was still early for a Friday night, so thankfully, most of the partiers were still out enjoying their fun.  Lina and I shared our apartment with two other girls that were pretty good as far as roommates go.  Darcy and Jennie were lovers, and pretty much kept to themselves.  Well, as much as you can in the small space we occupied.
I opened the refrigerator when we entered and pulled out a bottle of cheap peach wine and held it up.  “Are you drinking with me?” 
“I’ll have a glass.  When we’re raking in the big bucks we’ll have the good stuff.”  I was happy drinking the cheap knockoff wine, but I nodded.  Pulling two glasses down out of the cabinet I poured us a healthy dose and handed her one.
“To making all our dreams come true.”  I lifted my glass with a smile for a toast and she touched her rim to mine. I didn’t want to think about the man I’d met tonight, but as I sipped the sweet concoction, I wondered what kind of wine he liked.  The second I had that thought I pushed it away. 
“So, what did you think about the club, really?”  We’d walked into the common area and sat on our lumpy sofa.
I turned the television on to the nightly news and wished we could steer the conversation away from anything that reminded me of him.  “It wasn’t my thing.  But you knew it wouldn’t be.”  I was hoping she’d let it drop. I was disappointed.
 “I know the thing with Valentine freaked you out, but what if it was a sign?” She wasn’t letting it go and I sighed deeply.  We’d always been honest with each other and as much as I didn’t want to encourage her to speak about tonight, I wasn’t changing that.
“I’ve never seen anything like that before, and I’m sure that’s the only reason he caught my attention.  I mean, sure, he’s good looking, but come on.  Can you really see me letting some man tie me up and fuck me senseless?”  I shook my head and smiled, but maybe she was right?
“You probably won’t believe me but it’s not all about sex.  It feels good to let go and let some guy worry about everything.  Sometimes when I’m getting flogged, I feel like I step outside myself and all the stress I was feeling before slips away.  It’s kind of relaxing.”
“So, you don’t screw them?”  Maybe I’d read that lifestyle choice wrong, because I always assumed it was about kinky sex.
“Not all of them, no.  I’m not a whore, Grace.”  She chuckled softly.  “I’ve played around with plenty of men at the club and never had sex with them.  The only ones I’ve had sex with were ones that I tried to have a relationship with.”
“I would never call you a whore.  What you do with your body is your right as a woman.” I believed that.   “As long as you’re both being safe it doesn’t matter.”  I sipped on my wine and thought about what she was saying.  “You get off that way.  I mean with a guy hitting you?”
“You make it sound like they abuse me.” Her smile is wide as she continues.  “We talk about what we’re going to do in a scene, and if I don’t like where it’s leading, I safe word out.” I remembered her talking about safe words before but had never put them into context until tonight.
“What if they don’t stop?  I mean, if the guy has you tied up, he could decide to keep going no matter what you say.”  To me, it was incredibly dangerous to play around like that and I constantly worried about her well-being.
“That’s why I play at the club.  With men like Valentine around, no one is going to deny a safe word.”  Just hearing his name made me shiver.  For a person who considered herself asexual, he certainly made me want things I’d never contemplated before.  “I’ve seen people thrown out for annoying a person at the club.”
“I guess when you put it that way, it does seem safer to be around other people.”  Resting my head back on the couch, I closed my eyes and his face came to mind. I wondered what it would feel like to have him controlling me that way.  It sent a warm surge of pleasure down to my abdomen and I gasped, opening my eyes again.
“You should call him.”  She knew me better than anyone, so I shouldn’t have been surprised that my thoughts were transparent.
“I can’t.”  Shaking my head, I downed the rest of my wine and went back into the kitchen for a refill.  “The last thing I need to worry about right now is my sexuality.  I’ve got less than two months to find a job and we need a new place to live.” It was an excuse but one that was true at the same time.  Security was more important than some feelings for a guy who would probably not be interested once he got to know me.
“Don’t remind me.  The thought of packing again makes me want to stay here forever.”  I was glad her mind was back on our dilemma.  “I’ll shut up about this if you promise you’ll come back to the club with me after we’re settled in our new place.”
Did I really want to put myself through that again?  Shockingly, I decided I did.  Maybe there was some truth in what she was saying.  Not with the sexy Valentine, but this BDSM thing might be something that tempted me if I gave myself a chance to explore.  I didn’t consider myself a coward.
“Okay.” I wasn’t sure who I shocked more as her eyes widened at my agreement.
“I’m impressed.”  She finished off her wine and said she was calling it a night.  I waved her off as I returned to my wine and finished watching the news.  Back in my bed half an hour later, a gorgeous Valentine wouldn’t leave my thoughts.

Michelle Hughes is an American author who writes sensual romance and paranormal fiction. Hughes was formerly a country singer/songwriter and toured with a national satellite talent showcase. Recently, she was awarded a Kindle Press contract for her western romance, Cowboy Sanctuary. Other books in her library are: Fantasy’s Bar & Grill series, Tears of Crimson series, Sin, Rude, and the You Don’t Know Jack series. Hughes lives in Alabama with her husband and five children.

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