#MusicMonday

*Note: This is not a real collaboration, but it should be! The video was brilliantly, seamlessly created from two different live performances of the same song. If anyone knows where a petition can be signed to get these two artists to do an actual duet, please let me know!

Stay

by: Rihanna / Cover by: Thirty seconds to Mars

All along it was a fever
A cold sweat hot-headed believer
I threw my hands in the air, said, “Show me something,”
(S)He said, “If you dare, come a little closer.”

Round and around and around and around we go
Oh now, tell me now, tell me now, tell me now you know

Not really sure how to feel about it
Something in the way you move
Makes me feel like I can’t live without you
It takes me all the way
I want you to stay

It’s not much of a life you’re living
It’s not just something you take, it’s given

Round and around and around and around we go
Oh now, tell me now, tell me now, tell me now you know

Not really sure how to feel about it
Something in the way you move
Makes me feel like I can’t live without you
Yeah, it takes me all the way
I want you to stay

Ooh, ooh, ooh, the reason I hold on
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ’cause I need this hole gone
Funny you’re the broken one but I’m the only one who needed saving
‘Cause when you never see the light it’s hard to know which one of us is caving

Not really sure how to feel about it
Something in the way you move
Makes me feel like I can’t live without you
Yeah, it takes me all the way
I want you to stay, stay
I want you to stay, oooh

I do not own any rights to this song, lyrics or video. All rights remain with the artists and their respective agents. No copyright infringement intended.

I’ve already shared my love for Thirty Seconds To Mars, but even I was a little skeptical that Jared wasn’t using some kind of special mic for this performance – Nope. Every single “live” performance he does of this song sounds that freaking good. He’s just that superfantastically talented. I shall never doubt you again, Mr. J! 😉 hehe, get it?

Moving on – I really wanted to talk about Rihanna in this post. I have a lot of her songs in my music library. I think she’s so beautiful all around and has not only a spectacular voice, but her own voice – and that’s even more remarkable. I’ve been a fan since S.O.S., but in all honesty, I love all of the things she’s done since ditching that initial personae and showing the world the real Rihanna. Yeah, the ‘Good Girl Gone Bad’ one!

On top of being a Guinness Book of World Records breaker and having the ability to sing with anyone, Rihanna was named the 2017 Harvard University Humanitarian of the Year for her Clara Lionel Foundation (named after her grandparents) which, quoted from the site is: “Teachers and students, advocates and allies, reaching across borders to fight together for basic rights ​to education and health​.” The foundation is most known for all they’ve accomplished for health centers, hospitals and educational programs in Rihanna’s home country of Barbados.

Though it’s hard to choose favorites, this is my most listened to Rihanna solo and this is my most listened to collaboration – though it was a tossup with this one.

What’s your most worn out Rihanna track?

Opportunities Galore!

Opportunities

Image source: pinterest.com

Okay, so there are only 2 opportunities, but that doesn’t sound as catchy. 😉

Many of you already know from my endless, shameless, self-promotion that I have a new Contemporary Paranormal Romance coming out on June 1st. Hearthstone Alpha is a full-length novel and is the first in my new Úlfrinn series about a unique kind of Wolf Shifter species created by Odin, himself.

If you like that kind of stuff or just want to promote supremely hot Scandinavian men who can shift into wolfies, then I have the materials link HERE for the Release Day Blitz being hosted by Goddess Fish Promotions.

My second opportunity is more of an idea in the making, so it will depend on the response on whether or not it becomes a regular thing (as I hope it will) – I want to interview your Heroes/Heroines! I know this is not a new thing by any stretch of the imagination, but I would like to have a monthly or bi-monthly character interview to help promote your books! Again, the frequency will depend on the response and I’m sure it will take some doing getting it up off the ground.

I am currently putting together an interview questionnaire for either Hero or Heroine and will leave it up to you writers on which character you’d like to see in the limelight. If you’re interested, just let me know in the comments. This will be for any romance genre and any relationship situation, M/F, M/M, F/F, Menage, etc. I am an equal opportunity interviewer. 🙂

Happy Sunday!

We’re in a Magazine!

MagazineAd

Yep, that’s Avarice up there in the top right hand corner! 🙂

In all honesty, I completely forgot that I had even submitted for this months ago, so it’s not really a surprise to me, but it’s still exciting to see the results at last!

Indie Authors Monthly is a brand new e-magazine and best of all it’s Free & chock full of Indie resources, helpful articles, author spotlights and yes… even AWESOME ads (like Avarice!) 😀

I was given this opportunity through the Goodreads support group: Navigating IndieWorld Discussing All Things Indie. This is truly an amazing and supportive group for Indies and they’re really open to collaborative blog events, self-promoting and their discussions are endlessly insightful! Plus, the atmosphere there is very friendly and welcoming. Best Selling Children’s Author, Carole Roman is one of the group mods and she is frequently offering amazing, can’t-find-anywhere-else promotional opportunities – Like stuffing your printed books into the swag bags at Hollywood Awards Shows and running ads on Podcast sites.

My books don’t qualify, even if they were in print, no S-E-X allowed in the grab bags!

If you’re not already a member, I highly recommend the NIW group and they have a new website where they advertise Indies with their own author pages, and love getting guest blog articles!

#AuthorsSupportingAuthors

♫ ♪ “And I think to myself, what a wonderful world…” ♪♫

 

Sensual Sentient ♥ Episode 3

BadJack2

Image source: pinterest.com

Bad Jack

“That wasn’t rock climbing,” Blake grit out two hours later, when they finally reached the top of the cliff. Hauling himself over the ledge, he anchored the lead and started helping everyone else. “That was a goddamn expedition.”

Sida kept her pussy comment to herself, knowing he’d just counter with something like: “you offering?” He always had an inappropriate comeback. While most people needed inspiration or opportunity for their minds to slide into the gutter, Blake’s owned real estate there.

“Holy stars,” Ketha exhaled, when Blake helped her over the edge first.

Once everyone was topside, they detached their harnesses and took a moment to drink in the sheer megalithic size of the deserted city. Every building, statue, fountain and pillar put them right into familiar territory. It was unnerving. Sida’s gaze followed the cracked remnants of a toppled column about twenty yards ahead and to their left, completely blocking their path. She nearly ordered everyone to put their climbing gear back on, since that might be the only way to get over it.

“And it’s still a long way to the summit,” Blake exhaled, his gaze rising to the top of the tallest stepped pyramid in the distance.

“Bad Jack,” Sida snapped at him. “No more magic beans for you.”

He chuckled, rolling his shoulder with equal parts unease and determination. “And here I thought space was the only thing left to make us feel small and insignificant,” he remarked, before flashing that hidden grin at her again. “Guess next time you’ll take the bottom like a good girl.”

Sida patted the butt of her rifle, which was still on her favorite setting despite the engaged safety. “You wanna be the bastard, Yarring?”

Blake snorted. “Cap, I’ve never not been the bastard.”

“You keep giving me reasons to agree with you, it’s going to confuse the hell out of our crew,” she warned.

“There seems to be an actual source of vegetation up here,” Isiah interrupted, too used to their banter to be fazed.

“Just keep an eye on the mine shaft below, let me know when we reach the heart of the city,” Sida ordered. “We won’t find any answers until we can clear this road block, though, so let’s get a move on.”

“I thought the Maya had the whole stairway to heaven thing in the bag,” Ketha muttered, when they reached the downed column.

Due to its massive circumference and smooth surface, they really only had two choices; either bust their way through it or waste several hours walking around it. It was a tough call for a group of scientists. Fortunately, while Sida was still contemplating, they came across a section that was already partially broken and crumbling. It took little effort to carefully blast their way through just the already damaged area by using a relatively weak setting on their rifles. Pausing on the other side, Sida snatched Blake’s binoculars from his vest to get a closer look at the city, now that the view was completely unobstructed.

“Commander, I see glyphs,” she grinned.

“On it,” he reciprocated, running ahead.

“Ensign, where are we in relation to the mine now?”

“Higher than before,” Darling answered. “There’s definitely a steady sloping grade from the surface to the lowest point in the mine, which is the bend. From there to the entrance, it’s almost completely flat.”

Sida hooked the binoculars on her belt and looked around. “That doesn’t make any goddamn sense. A single shaft well should indicate a Qanat system, but there’s only one access point and it’s at the highest elevation, not the lowest. Unless they had gravity-defying water, I think we need to find more evidence behind the true purpose for this mine.”

“I agree. Another three klicks and we’ll be at the city center, Captain,” he replied.

“Good, any readings on what kind of ore we might otherwise be dealing with?” she asked.

“I’ve got trace amounts of the usual recipe, but nothing concrete. We’ll have to dig into deeper sediments for samples.”

“There should be aqueducts,” Sida noted aloud a moment later. “Every civilization had advanced water systems in place by the time they were building cities of this magnitude. They had rain basins, diverted rivers, something to bring fresh water to the citizens.”

Minnows glanced over her shoulder, though they could no longer see the ledge. “That trench could have been a river at one time, which might explain why only part of the city caved in.”

Sida nodded in agreement, though none of them had seen any evidence of that from below. There would be natural markers, different levels of sediment lining the cliff walls like artwork from the water slowly drying up over time. Unless it evaporated all at once. That was an eerie thought, but then so was the very Earthling-like city they were marching toward.

“Or, perhaps water hadn’t been a necessary part of their diet,” Isiah suggested. “It’s kind of sad when you think about it.”

“Then don’t,” Sida suggested.

“Can you imagine our planet dying before we’d even made it out of the iron age?” he persisted.

“Yet, he does it anyway,” Sida grumbled to herself. “Yarring, what have you got for me?”

“Obviously, they made it off this planet, so logically, they were far more advanced than we ever were during our iron age,” Ketha debated with Isiah.

Sida rolled her eyes. “Commander!”

Why did she always get stuck with the kids, while he went to play in the rubble? Something was seriously wrong with that setup.

“You guys aren’t going to believe what I’m looking at,” Blake’s voice finally came through the comm links in their mini-masks. “These NTs…they’re humanoid.”

“Yarring, have you ever seen the Bremm?” she scoffed. “Ogres would be considered more humanoid.”

“These aren’t Bremm, Cap,” he returned. “If I didn’t know any better, I’d swear I was staring at the tomb walls of one of our own ancient sites. I’m seeing similarities to all of them. They kept record of everything in the same fashion, too. Farming, fishing, ceremonies, battles…wait–”

“Commander?” Sida prompted, when several moments of silence ticked by.

“Shh.”

Sida arched a brow. He did not just shush her.

“I found the city center events,” he finally spoke again.

“And?” she snapped.

“There’s some kind of procession, NTs climbing onto a platform from an underground chamber right in the heart of the… fucking Christ,” he cut himself off. “It’s an auction block, the bastards were slavers. There’s something extremely off about these glyphs, Captain. Not only are the slaves also humanoid, they’re depicted as being much larger than the citizens.”

“Define much larger,” she replied, peering around at the ginormous city.

“A whole other race kind of larger,” he answered. “And judging by the monoliths used to construct these megaliths, I wouldn’t be shy about labeling them giants.”

“Starblood,” Sida said, looking at Isiah. “Any trace?”

“Not on the surface,” he answered, eyes a little wide. “Giants, Captain? They enslaved giants to build all of this?”

“Yeah, I think they did,” Blake answered for her.

“So much for your advanced theory, Lieutenant,” Isiah remarked to Ketha. “If we find Starblood, no one left this planet by ship.”

“We need to get into that mine,” Sida intervened firmly. “I prefer my facts to be of the non-speculative variety. Why don’t we have a reading on this supposed chamber under the city?”

“I’m not showing any cavities other than the mine, itself, which abruptly stops about a hundred yards below the surface,” Darling confirmed.

“Could have been a cave-in,” Minnows suggested, pointing to the crumbled roads. “These aren’t exactly Imperial quality.”

By the time they reached the city center, Blake was just meeting up with them. “I didn’t find anything depicting the Bremm and I’m really starting to doubt they were ever here. Maybe this isn’t Molta Cremyss, after all, but a completely unknown planet. None of the glyphs I found are pointing toward the apocalyptic event that caused everyone to abandon the home world, but I’m willing to bet all of my gambling debts there’s a lot more where those came from.”

“That’s a lot of negative credit, Commander,” Sida smirked, reluctantly amused.

“I’m a giving man, Cap,” he shrugged. “We need to find their version of a Valley of the Kings.”

“Assuming they buried their dead,” Ketha interjected. “Many ancient civilizations used funeral pyres.”

“I love how scientists are always looking on the bright side of things,” Sida grinned. “Darling, run a perimeter scan fifty yards out and see if you find anything interesting.”

“Got it, Captain.” He didn’t get far, before he was waving them over. “Hey, look at this.”

They all approached the broken, rectangular pattern he was dusting off in the rocky dirt. Crouching at various sections, they all started doing the same, revealing a kind of lip about fifty-five yards long and twenty yards wide.

“This was the auction block,” Blake stated first, studying it more carefully. “Or at least the foundation of it.”

“Which means, this had to be where the entrance to the underground chamber was,” Sida pointed to a large area of the ground that bowled toward the center. “Looks like cave-in wins the pool. Good call, Minnows.”

“If that led to the chamber, and its somehow connected to the mine shaft, we could be looking at trouble,” Blake swore under his breath. “What do you want to do now, Cap?”

It was another tough decision. They were already topside, had spent two hours getting there and another making it to the city center, yet the chance of there being Starblood underground pulled at her.

“What we always do, Commander,” Sida decided. “Find the door to the next planet. Back to base, crew.”

Rising to her feet, Sida peered around the city of ruins once more, suppressing the desire to say the hell with protocol and go racing right into every building, turn over every stone, and learn everything she could about the NTs who’d lived there, because the similarities to Earth couldn’t be ignored. They could very well be standing right in the middle of a missing link in their own evolution. Their own origins. To say she was intrigued was a cosmic understatement. She wanted answers five minutes ago.

First, they needed to solve the mystery of the mine.

Thank you for reading! If you’re just tuning in, check out The Wicked Web link on the menu above for previous episodes. Until next time…

Hearthstone Alpha Cover Reveal!

Heartstone Cover Reveal

Heartstone cover

Title: Hearthstone Alpha ( The Úlfrinn Series, #1)

Author: A.C. Melody

Publisher: Red Sage Publishing

Pages: approx. 300 (Full length Novel)

Genre: Contemporary Paranormal Romance (Wolf Shifters)

Release Date: June 1, 2017

Add to Goodreads

All Reyna Daniels wants is to secure her return home to Minneapolis to be with her family. The last thing she needs is to find her world completely inundated by the magnetizing, hostile Corbyn Bruschard and his group of male-model friends.

Corbyn’s not ashamed at being everywhere, since it’s his territory, and he’s certainly not going to apologize for trying to keep Reyna safe. Especially, when she’s his mate.

With all signs pointing to an old enemy’s return, Reyna’s going to have to suck it up and face her ancient Norse heritage fast, whether she’s ready to or not. That doesn’t mean she has to accept being mated to an Alpha who threatens all of her hard-earned independence.

Heartstone Teaser 2

About the Author

A.C. Melody is a hybrid Author of Erotic Romance and its many sub-genres. Confessed javaholic, introverted geeky girl with a twisted sense of humor and a wretched muse.

She has a weakness for hard ass Alphas and the strong women who capture their hearts, without damaging their rough edges. No matter how submissive or demure, her female leads have a core of strength and a willingness to admit their own flaws and evolve, not just demand that of their men.

When it comes to gambling, A.C. admits she’s 100% guilty of placing all her money on the underdogs, anti-heroes, and shameless whores.

Sign up for A.C. Melody’s Author Newsletter today & get exclusive Cover Reveals, Excerpts, Character Interviews/Bios and join in giveaways (She promises not to spam!): http://eepurl.com/cb9D7H

#TacoTuesday

And we’re back for week 4 of building our book tacos. Check out the original post HERE for what this is all about and how you can join in. Remember, it’s never too late, just leave a pingback in the comments so I can read your post! Now, for the next layer…

Writing Menu

Cheese: Share a scene where one of your characters interacts with some kind of camera, photograph or video for any reason. If there are none, then share one of their funniest moments or dialogue pieces.

Pulling his classic beauty into the parking lot of Shades Soirée, Matt eyed the modern building with scrutiny. “Looks high end,” he remarked, as they climbed out. “Not very busy, though.”

He counted a total of five cars on their way to the entrance, which was locked.

“Nightclub only,” Zach tapped the smoky glass to the left of the doors displaying the club’s hours of operation.

“We only need to talk to staff right now, anyway.”

They found the service entrance for deliveries around the left side of the building and pressed the call button.

“Yeah?” A male voice crackled over the intercom a second later.

“MCPD, is there a manager on site?” Matt asked.

Silence followed. Zach elbowed him and thrust his chin upward. “Smile.”

Matt pulled his badge off his belt and stuck it right into the camera lens. “Cheese.”

~ Shades Soirée (Matron City Trilogy #2)

Readers Menu

Cheese: Name a favorite book/series that had to do with photography, acting, reporting or any other camera-related theme – OR – where the humor was so off the charts you found yourself ‘cheesing’ through 90% of it.

CoverNakedInDeathJDRobbI either can’t recall or have never actually read a book where the main character or theme dealt with cameras. However, one of my favorite series, the In Death series by J.D. Robb (aka Nora Roberts) has a sub-character who makes an appearance or two in almost every book, because she’s the only reporter the main character, Eve Dallas, trusts. Not only is Nadine Furst a memorable supporting character, her and Eve’s banter is always humorous, so I think that qualifies.

If you haven’t ventured into Nora Roberts’ alter ego, J.D. Robb, with her In Death series, I highly recommend it. You get the same amazing writing style she’s known for with a lot more edge, steamier sex scenes and a full cast of characters you’ll fall head over heels for. If you like crime novels, murder mysteries and endless snarky banter, these are definitely books for you. Although each novel is a stand alone, and each homicide case is different, I highly recommend starting from the beginning with Naked In Death, because the series deals with the same characters, whose lives and relationships continue to evolve with each new book.

Don’t forget – If you’re reading this, you’re officially tagged!

 

Next week’s ingredient: Lettuce!

Lettuce for the writer: Anytime money was used, stolen, given, exchanged or was otherwise the main topic of conversation in a significant way.

Lettuce for the reader: Share a favorite book/series where money played a significant role in dialogue, the story line, or was used as a thrilling plot twist. (The more unique the situation, the bigger the cool points).

Chapter Reveal ☆ Hers, Untamed by Anna Adler!

HersUntamedCover

Title: Hers, Untamed
Author: Anna Adler
Release Date: May 31st

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☆ Chapter 1 ☆

“Please take a seat, Ms. Cressfield. Your guide will be with you shortly.”

Alyssa plopped into the armchair and accepted the courtesy cup of organically farmed coffee, which on this planet cost more than a month’s salary.

Happy birthday to me!

Excitement sparkled in her veins like champagne. Today, for her thirty-fifth birthday, she would realize her lifelong dream and buy herself a pet. Her gaze scanned the pristine expanse of the lobby, a hologram logo of the Interstellar Pet Training Inc. floating above the shiny white reception desk. The hot cup she nursed bore the same marking: a smiling human petting a kneeling alien. Soft music mingled with the gentle splash of the fountain located at the center of the room. Alyssa sipped her coffee, but its rich flavor barely registered.

Pet-keeping entailed responsibility. She wouldn’t be able to spend so much time running around shopping and partying with her friends anymore; she would have to be at home to feed and care for her new friend. But then again, building a relationship with her pet would be so rewarding. A pet was also a status symbol. She looked forward to flaunting her companion in public and receiving the admiring or envious looks associated with owning a pet.

Alyssa shifted her weight. She put her hand on the armrest, her fingers tapped the white leather. Finally, she heard footsteps on the marble floor, and a man approached.

“Ms. Cressfield? I’m sorry to keep you waiting. Welcome to Interstellar.”

Alyssa put her coffee down and rose. The IPT Inc. employee in his tailored suit shook her hand. “Thank you for considering us for your needs. I’m sure you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for. My name’s William and I’ll be your guide today.”

Alyssa resisted the urge to jump up and down and squeal. “Great. Let’s get on with it.”

William gestured her to walk with him.

“Male or female?” he asked.

“Male,” Alyssa replied. Females tended to be easier to handle, but a male would look more impressive by her side. A big, sexy male with muscular arms…

“Is this your first pet, Ms. Cressfield?”

“Yes.”

“What kind of training are you looking for? Do you mean to engage in pet shows or sports events?”

“No, I just want a house pet. If it turns out he’s interested in competition, I’ll train him further myself.”

“You want one with only the basic training, then. I’m happy to say that we have a large selection for you.” William gave her a broad smile. “You may have difficulty choosing.”

Alyssa grinned. “That’s exactly what I want. Impress me.”

The room they entered was lined with comfortably furnished glass exhibits, each occupied by a pet. In the first enclosure, a pale-skinned Lurexian sat reading a book. When Alyssa approached, he set it aside, moved up to the glass, and posed to accentuate his toned pectorals. His face and body were human-like, but his golden hair resembled a lion’s mane and he had a long, furry tail as well. William entered a command on his wristband, and the lights above the Lurexian’s glass cage dimmed. His skin began to glow with natural bioluminescence. He wore only a black loincloth. Alyssa licked her lips.

William seemed to notice where Alyssa’s gaze had drifted.

“Would you like him to remove the cloth?”

“Maybe later,” she said, eagerly turning her head toward the next exhibit.

They viewed several Lurexians, after which came Lizardians, fur-coated, quadrupedal Wolfmen, and tall Crasnians, with their gorgeous red eyes. The pets were all fit, handsome and healthy, and each bowed respectfully as she passed. No wonder IPT was said to be the best pet training center on Silenia.

Alyssa was in heaven, having so many good-looking males to choose from. She scarcely focused on any of them for more than five seconds before running to the next. Her heart skipped with delight as her gaze scanned the enclosures around her.

“I could spend the whole day here!”

“I fully encourage you to do so,” William said. “You want to choose the right companion.”

A glowing sign pointing to the adjoining room caught her eye. It said “hybrids”. Heat rose in her cheeks. Human-alien hybrids were the most popular sex pets. Being wealthy and attractive, Alyssa had no difficulty finding partners whenever she wanted someone in her bed, but owning a sexy creature and having him at her disposal at all times promised a new kind of excitement.

“I think I’d like a hybrid,” Alyssa said.

“Alien-alien or human-alien?”

“Human-alien.”

William proceeded to direct her to the right side of the hybrid room.

“This one is very tame and amiable,” he said, pausing in front of a tall half-Lizardian. The pet looked like a man, but he had beautiful, bronze-colored scales. “Would you like to pet him?”

Alyssa nodded. William tapped his wristband. A section of the glass wall slid aside, creating an opening large enough to fit a hand through. The pet crawled on all fours to the opening and presented his shoulder. Alyssa ran her fingers over his skin. It felt warm, and more ridged than human skin. How delightful it would be to touch him every day. She cooed at him and tried to establish eye contact, but he kept his gaze averted. He didn’t even seem to realize she was there.

Alyssa wanted a pet she could interact with. She pulled her hand away. “Do you have any that are—”

A crash split the air, making her jump.

“Damn that thing!” someone in the next room shouted.
Alyssa looked at William with a raised eyebrow. William’s jaw had tightened, but he tried to give her a pleasant look.

“I’m sorry about the noise, Ms. Cressfield.”

“What was that?”

“It’s merely the new acquisition. His cage is in the training area.”

“Oh? Can I see him?”

“You wouldn’t be interested in him. He’s not ready yet. Still completely wild and untrained.”

Alyssa came alive with curiosity.

Wild! Untrained! What are they like when freshly caught?

She straightened. “I’d like to see him.”

William opened his mouth to speak, but then seemed to think better of it. He nodded politely and walked her through a door to a different area of the facility. Whereas the pet display areas were predominantly white, decorative, and spotlessly clean, the walls here were drab gray, everything with a strictly utilitarian look. Several empty cages lined the hallway. The new acquisition occupied the cage at the end. Four men stood in front of it, wearing dark uniforms with an armband identifying them as pet trainers. One of them collected scattered pieces of equipment off the floor.

“A client wants to see the new merchandise,” William announced.

The men looked warily at Alyssa but stepped aside. Alyssa faced the cage and gasped. A human-alien hybrid; a mouth-watering hunk of hard muscle. He looked mostly human, except for the brown-and-blue scales that covered both arms and part of his left leg. His posture radiated strength and defiance. He glared at all of them, his face twisted with barely contained rage. His eyes were pale blue with narrow pupils, typical of the humanoid-reptilian S’laurians.

He was also completely naked. Shreds of black cloth littered the floor of the cage.
He stalked toward them and threw himself against the glass wall, trying to break it. Alyssa started back, although she knew the glass would hold. The hybrid pounded his fist against it until his knuckles turned bloody. He threw Alyssa a snarl, sauntered to the back of the cage, and appeared to fume silently.

Alyssa’s heart pounded. She had never seen anything so ferocious and strangely attractive. Her gaze shifted to the red smudge on the glass.

“He hurt himself.”

“We’re going to have to sedate him for a while,” one of the trainers said. “Calm him down and start all over again. He’s not responding to the training like he should.”

“How long has he been here?”

“Three weeks.”

“If you have seen enough, Ms. Cressfield, may I suggest we resume our tour?” William said.

Alyssa thought about going back to the other pets, but the idea left her cold. She couldn’t tear her gaze away from the beast hunkering in the corner. She stepped closer and tapped at the glass. He glanced over his shoulder. Their gazes met and the power behind his dark scowl made her breath catch.

I could tame him. Make him mine.

He was different from all the other pets. A flame licked her belly at the thought of owning this raging male, having this beast on a leash…

“No need. I want this one.”

William’s eyes widened. “But he hasn’t been tamed. Ms. Cressfield, this pet is extremely dangerous.”

“I know. I’ll be careful.”

“We usually don’t sell unbroken pets.”

Alyssa fixed a stern gaze on William. “I’m the client, and I want to buy this one. Do we have a deal or not?”

“Of course,” he replied, paused, and cleared his throat. “Perhaps…you would like to learn more about your new possession before we handle the transaction?”

Alyssa smiled and turned to the nearest trainer. “Does he speak English?”

The trainer scratched his head. “We haven’t exactly managed to have a conversation with him, but judging from the curses he throws at us…yes, I’d say he speaks English.”

“His estimated age is thirty-eight standard years,” a younger trainer said, handing Alyssa a data pad. “Here’s his file. Half human, half S’laurian, strong and healthy, should be suitable for almost anything if you can tame him. You can feed him regular human food, just make sure it’s low in carbohydrates and high in protein. And regular exercise is important. It should help curb the violent outbursts.”

Alyssa skimmed over the file. She couldn’t wait to have him transported to her apartment, to have him all to herself.

“I have the cage and everything else ready at my apartment. How soon can you bring him over?”

“We’ll need to chip him and run a few tests,” William said. “Would tomorrow morning be suitable?”

“Tomorrow morning would be perfect. Now, the price…”

“Yes. Please excuse me for a second. I need to talk to my superior—this specimen is untrained and doesn’t yet have a price.”

Alyssa nodded. She dreamily gazed at her new pet while William stepped aside to make a phone call. The wild creature kept his back turned to them. His muscular shoulders rose and fell with his breathing, betraying his anger, even though he remained silent. He examined his injured hand.

“You’ll take care of his hand, won’t you?” Alyssa asked the trainers.

“We’ll patch him up for you.”

“And make sure he can’t injure himself anymore. I don’t want him hurt.”

“We’ll see to it, Ms. Cressfield.”

William ended his call and returned to Alyssa. “Ms. Cressfield? I’ve been instructed to offer this specimen for 500,000 credits.”

“Half a million?” Alyssa laughed. “You can’t be serious. That’s as much as your fully trained pets.”

“He’s a very rare hybrid,” William said. “This is the first time we’ve acquired someone like him. Fully trained, he would fetch twice as much. And please remember we’ll handle the transportation and all the necessary insurances for you; it’s included in the price. We also provide a training collar and a basic pet care kit.”

A rare hybrid…now the price sounded like a bargain. And the idea of possessing a one-of-a-kind pet appealed to Alyssa. Besides, she had the money. This was what she had been saving for. She didn’t really care what he cost anyway, she simply wanted to have him.

“All right, 500,000 credits.”

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☆ Author Bio ☆

My name is Anna, I’m an erotic romance author, and my goal in life is never to have another writer’s block. I’ve been in love with action and futuristic stuff from an early age, whether it’s in books, movies, or video games. More recently, I also developed a taste for steamy romances. The stories in my head contain these elements in different combinations, and I look forward to putting them all on (virtual) paper – for my own amusement, if nothing else. I live in Germany with my husband, my overactive imagination, and pipe dreams of fortune and glory.

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