I’m honoured to be part of the blog tour celebrating International Heat’s first birthday. Of course, I’m also a little late to the party, but I’ll blame that on picking up the concept of Irish time* from the Farm Boy!
*For many events, if the slated start time is 8pm, you can arrive at 8.30 and be early. Of course the real skill is knowing which events will actually start on time!
As you may know, there if you comment on each blog in the tour, you might win a (red-hot) prize or two. My contribution is ye olde-fashioned paperback (remember them?) of Calling the Wild.
Other bloggers involved in the tour (which you have to admit is easier and more fun than the Tour de France) are:
Finally on the occasion of IH’s first anniversary, here’s a NSFW extract from Briar Rose, my re-telling of Sleeping Beauty.
Aurora finished her survey of his features and returned her gaze to his. Her heart gave a traitorous thump and the knot in her belly wound tighter. Inexplicably her eyes began to fill with tears.
“Beautiful Rose, why do you weep?”
“My heart, it hurts.”
“As does mine,” Hawk said with a smile.
“Why? I don’t understand!”
“Because, you have just fallen in love with me.”
“As I have with you.”
A tear slipped from the corner of her eye to trail into her hair. “It cannot be.”
“Why do you deny true love?”
“There is no love, only duty.”
“Has no one ever loved you before my beautiful Rose?”
“My … my godmother.”
“But no man.”
“Well I have never loved a woman. For many years I kept myself away from women, thinking that I must marry out of duty, but no more. But I have known love, from my parents and subje—friends. And I know that this is love.”
“I cannot love you.”
“I have … I must…”
“You must nothing.”
“Oh please stop! You make me long for things I cannot have.” But rather than push at him she buried her face against his bare chest. Hugging her to him, Hawk rolled until she lay across him, her blonde hair falling in golden glory around their bodies, her cries of distress heartbreaking in a forest that had gone quiet.
“Sweet Rose,” he murmured, voice rich and smooth.
“Hawk,” she whimpered. She needed him, needed his touch once more, and, for the first time, she wanted sex to be soft and slow, with long glances and slow touches, not the fire and flash she had known.
Throat now too tight to speak Aurora sat up, astride his belly, and then lowered herself to lie on his chest. Whisper Whisper-soft and tentative, like a kitten, she scattered tiny kisses over his face, pleasing herself, the pleasure rolling when the way his lips moved to seek hers told her that he found her touch pleasurable too. The tip of her tongue, delicately extended, traced over his closed eyes and the swell of each cheekbone. As she moved back to his ear he rubbed his cheek against hers.
“You are so handsome, my darling Hawk.”
“And you so sweet my beautiful Rose. I cannot wait to be inside you again, my body pumping slowly within you.” Aurora bit her lip as his words fueled the fire in her belly. “Can you feel it, do you ache for it? My body thrusting into you, over and again.” His hips moved under hers, pantomiming the rhythm he spoke of. “Again and again until I spill inside you, filling you, as you clench around me.”
Aurora sat up, her face ashen. “Spill inside me?’
“Aye, are you ready Beautiful Ro —”
She rolled off, nearly doing him an injury in the process. “The last time, you … you…”
Aurora climbed off him and yanked her dress on.
“Rose, what are you doing?”
“I must go.”
“This was a mistake, a terrible mistake. I should have been more careful.”
“Careful about what?” Hawk, more than a little exasperated, grabbed her arms, holding her still.
“I … I should not have let you spill inside me.”
“Ah, yes, well, it’s no matter if you are with child my love. I can take care of you. Now just calm yourself and let’s get that dress back off.”
“You don’t understand! I shouldn’t have done this. I should have been more careful.” Aurora jerked the laces of her bodice closed. “I must go.”
“When will I see you again?”
The correct answer—never—sprang to her lips, but what came out was: “Tonight.”
“Here. Now please… I must go.”
“Rose if you are in danger, if your father or brother will hurt you for what we did…”
“I will be safe. There is only my godmother.”
“I still do not understand what’s wrong.”
Aurora grabbed his face, pressing a fervent kiss to his lips. “Tonight.”
Snatching up handfuls of skirt Aurora turned and ran. Naked, confused, and half aroused, with the only chance of relief darting away, Prince Phillip watched his love run through the trees.