LESSON LEARNED by Peri Elizabeth Scott @evernightpub @allysonyoung45

 

Lesson Learned

by Peri Elizabeth Scott

Blurb:

Adrian Matsakis is a successful businessman with terrible luck in personal relationships. His ex-wife wrecked him, and when he tried again with Jessie Brandt, she too betrayed him.

He is shocked and outraged to learn he has a son with her and is determined to take custody. He’s never forgotten Jessie but can’t forgive her, especially now.

Forewarned of Adrian’s intent, Jessie preempts him by inviting him to co-parent, and he reins himself in. He can’t resist reminding her of her perfidy, however, just as she continues to maintain her innocence.

They struggle against the chemistry—and more—sparking between them, and when Adrian double checks the facts around Jessie’s supposed betrayal, he’s staggered to learn the evidence was planted.

He sets out to make amends, and Jessie must decide if she’ll allow him back into her heart, and give Adrian a place to finally call home.

Buy Links:

https://www.evernightpublishing.com/lesson-learned-by-peri-elizabeth-scott/

https://www.bookstrand.com/book/lesson-learned-mf

https://www.kobo.com/ca/en/ebook/lesson-learned-14

https://tinyurl.com/y5auljt3

Excerpt:

 

We believe you know Jessie Brandt. Please see the attached picture. Come for dinner tonight. Mikhail

Adrian Matsakis shoved back from his desk with such strength the back of the chair hit the wall, and the resulting shudder made his teeth clack together. The distance from his computer monitor didn’t make it less true. The attachment he’d clicked on nearly filled the screen with a picture of a sturdy, little toddler, laughing up at a woman who crouched beside him, holding an enormous balloon.

It was like looking into a mirror of his youth, pictures of him as a child festooning most available surfaces, compliments of his doting mother. She’d been unable to have other children, and thus lavished every maternal ounce of her being upon him. His father created a balance, or Mama might have driven him crazy.

Maybe he was crazy, seeing something in that image that was wishful thinking. It couldn’t be. Rolling back to his desk, he clicked to reread the email from Mikhail. Nothing changed.

After opening up the image again, he soaked in the two faces featured there, noting how little Jessie had changed over the three years since he’d last seen her, the golden-blonde hair and laughing brown eyes, clear, ivory skin, long, slender hands, and a lithe body with all the requisite curves.

His son—for he had no doubt the child was his—was still exhibiting baby roundness, but his arms and legs were long like Adrian’s, and the riot of black curls that would be the bane of his existence unless fads changed, and maybe even then, waved wildly about the boy’s head. Olive skin set off the tiny white teeth visible in the wide smile. He thought his son’s eyes were gray like his own, but perhaps they were a velvety brown like Jessie’s.

Adrian finally allowed the cacophony of emotions churning in his gut to be labeled. He was furious, firstly. Furious to learn he had a child after all this time, and curious about the boy. Elated too. He wouldn’t deny it. He had badly wanted a child, children, and learning that his ex wife Sharon terminated not one, but two of his babies still sent shards of agony throughout his being.

But he now had a child, and it must be love, if not intense affection flooding his system as he stared at the little boy. He purposely narrowed his gaze, keeping it directly on the toddler, because he didn’t want his confused emotions toward Jessie to spill over, even within his own head, onto his son.

His son. Why hadn’t she told him? Contacted him as was his right? Especially when she knew how much he wanted children? Because I threw her out. He shook the vaguely remorseful thought away.

He’d thrown her out for good reason. She’d been lucky he hadn’t pressed charges, although she’d challenged him to do so even as she accepted his edict and marched away down the hall, her spine erect and her head held high.

Out of sight, out of mind. He’d made certain she left with nothing. Except she left with something. And if she’d really wanted my money, then why hadn’t she used the child? He decided to ignore that inconvenient niggle as well.

He shot an email to Mikhail, accepting the dinner invitation when what he really wanted to do was phone the man and demand an explanation. But he hadn’t climbed to where he was in his business by flying off the handle. He’d attend the dinner tonight armed with all possible information and pool it with what his friend knew. And plan.

He closed down his computer after carefully saving and printing several copies of the toddler and then obtained the number of an experienced investigative agency. He’d head out and pick up some wine and flowers for the hostess—and begin the plan of retrieving his child. Anything this important would take great care and strategy.

 

Author Bio:

Allyson Young lives in cottage country in Manitoba, Canada with her husband and numerous pets. She worked in the human services all across Canada and has seen the best and worst of what people bring to the table. Allyson has written for years, mostly short stories and poetry, published in small newspapers and the like, although her work appeared in her high school yearbooks too! After reading an erotic romance, quite by accident, she decided to try her hand at penning erotica.
Allyson will write until whatever she has inside her is satisfied- when all the heroes man up and all the heroines get what they deserve. Love isn’t always sweet, and Allyson favours the darker side of romance.

Blog: http://www.allysonyoung.com
Email: allysonyoung45@gmail.com
Twitter: @allysonyoung45

Links:
http://www.amazon.com/Allyson-Young/e/B00A9WPAYK
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/%22Allyson%20Young%22?
https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/search?query=Allyson%20Young&fcsearchfield=Author
https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/allysonyoung1
http://baronetpress.com/our-books/
http://www.blushingbooks.com/

 

ACTS OF CONTRITION: MAKING IT UP TO MAGGIE / BEGGING BRIANA by Peri Elizabeth Scott

Blurbs:

Making it up to Maggie

Harrison’s insecurities
catch up with him when finds another man, albeit alone, in his girlfriend’s
bed. Refusing to hear her explanation, he leaves her. His secretary then
meddles in his affairs, effectively driving Maggie away with a vengeance. Upon
discovering that woman’s perfidy, Harrison tries to remedy the situation, and
then finds out Maggie is pregnant! Determined to win her back, Harrison does
his best to provide and care for her from a distance while trying to insinuate
himself back into her life.
Hurt and bewildered, Maggie
couldn’t believe Harrison would stoop so low, but the evidence seems irrefutable.
And now she’s worried Harrison wants her only because she carries his child.
Harrison’s world again spins
out of control, and he wonders if he is the best man for Maggie and their child
after all…
It’s up to Maggie to teach
Harrison his real worth.

Begging Briana

Caleb Younger is certain he
will never actually love any woman, having been badly burned in the past
because of so-called love. He believes he’s fond of Briana Jeffries, has
intense sexual feelings for her, and wants her in his life, but doesn’t love
her.
Humiliated, when he says as
much while amongst their friends, Briana finally accepts she’s been fooling
herself—Caleb will never love her. She leaves him to get on with her life.
His life now empty, Caleb
faces the truth. He loves Briana more than anything, and resorts to everything
to get her back. But Briana’s friend doesn’t want Briana hurt again and
conspires to keep the two apart. A series of events and coincidences play out,
giving Caleb the opportunity to beg Briana to take him back.

Buy Links: 

https://www.books2read.com/u/3L0AG1

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07KXLBC9S

 
Excerpt: 
Making It Up to
Maggie
 
Harrison increased his grip on the steering wheel of his SUV to a stranglehold.
It was the only thing keeping him from jumping out and grabbing Maggie,
throwing her in the back seat, and
driving off with her. Sanity prevailed, but it was a close call. He marveled again at how a slip of a woman had
infiltrated his psyche and undermined his self-control, not to mention teaching
him so much on the subject of himself. Before he’d gone and royally screwed
things up.
She stood outside the doors of the office building with two of her
friends. Even at a distance, he saw her
energy and light while she conversed animatedly with Veronica and Joyce,
although he’d noticed shadows beneath her eyes and a certain gauntness
hollowing her cheeks whenever he’d been able to get closer to her.
Her blonde hair streamed around her shoulders in the gusty wind, and
her dress was pulled tightly against her long, slender frame, molding her high
breasts and the slight, swelling roundness of her belly. His baby was growing
there.
Harrison was missing out on every wondrous day of that burgeoning life
and the woman he desired and loved more than anything else in the world. Missing
out because of his stupid masculine pride and ego.
He closed his eyes against the pain in his heart and the clenching of
his gut. He didn’t know what else he might do to make amends for his atrocious behavior, to regain Maggie’s trust. Nothing. He had to accept that. He would
do his best to care for her, provide for her and his child, but from a
distance. He was his father’s son, after all, and she deserved better, as did
their child. He’d proven he had nothing to offer outside of the basics and the
superficial because blood would tell. As would nature over nurture.

Begging Briana

 
Tossing several items of clothing into her suitcase, Briana Jeffries
then found a plastic makeup bag to stick a few toiletries in. It had taken a
long time to accept the obvious but she’d finally accepted the fact Caleb
wasn’t going to miraculously profess his love for her. Tonight had been the
kicker.
She ignored the ache in her chest and concentrated on packing the
things she needed, not that there were a lot. No way was she going to think
about what was true. Except she couldn’t turn a blind eye. She loved Caleb and
he didn’t love her. There. She said it again and that made it true.
Swiping impatiently at the tears suddenly streaking her face, she
zipped the bag closed, taking a final look around the bedroom she shared with
the love of her life for nearly three years. Too bad she hadn’t been the love
of his. It was time to move on. Christina would be outside by now.
Hurrying down the stairs of the place she’d hoped would be her forever
home, she steadfastly ignored all the little things she’d done to make it so,
especially the plethora of pictures. The reflection of beautiful places and
events, smiling, happy faces, pictures of her and Caleb, mocked her despite her
best efforts not to look. Caleb must be blind not to see what they had between
them, captured for the world to see, but apparently,
it was her love that was blind. After
throwing open the front door she hauled her case outside, barely avoiding the
rebound of the heavy wooden panel as it slammed shut behind her, her keys now
locked within. Final. No going back.

About the author:

Peri Elizabeth Scott aka Allyson Young lives in cottage country, Manitoba, Canada where she and her
husband pretend to work well together in their seasonal business.
She has always enjoyed the written word, and after reading an erotic romance, quite by
mistake, decided to try her hand at penning one. That was followed by a mix of
spicy (Ally) and sweet (Peribeth) romances in various genres as well as a
post-apocalyptic adventure without a lick of romance by Peribeth.
A bestselling Amazon author, a hybrid, and a coauthor, as of November 2018 she has published seven series and several standalones, with others in the works. 

SHELTER, THE RECKONING by Allyson Young/ Peri Elizabeth Scott





Blurb:

Captain Jesse Forbes was understandably mistaken in his original assessment of Colonel Mitchell Stone. But his method of gathering that intel has blown up in his face.
Given Addison Longwood’s history, he knows she’ll never offer him a second chance, and working together against a common foe is going to be torture in more ways than one.

 Addison hopes for the best but expects the worst as she and her fellow defenders gain reinforcements and take it to the enemy, unaware another betrayal awaits them.
Survivors change sides and lines are blurred—good guys and bad guys wear camo.

 

Buy links:

https://www.books2read.com/u/3R16Lj 
https://www.amazon.com//dp/B07F3ND3YT

 

 

Excerpt: 

Stepping right into her space, he grasped her by the upper arms and yanked her close. The familiar feel of his body against her own, his scent, thrust her into memories—the good ones that had temporarily replaced the ones from her childhood—and nearly overwhelmed her common sense.

“Addy, I need to you to listen to me. Please.”
For an instant, she longed to melt into him, to let him kiss her the way he did, to escape from the reality that was to come. To allow what usually followed such a kiss. Her innate sense of survival overrode the impulse. Trust was such a fragile thing… Fool me once. She carried enough shame.

Twisting free, the strength of his fingers likely leaving marks, she put distance between them. “Don’t. Not ever.”
The words, spoken so adamantly, quietly and so coldly, fell between them and rose up like an invisible wall only the two of them could see.

Jesse stilled, staring at her, his whiskey-golden eyes morphing into solid amber. “You’ll never forgive me.”

“There’s nothing to forgive.” She repeated what she’d said to Marcia and would repeat forever, if necessary. “Means to an end. I get it. I’d be stupid to let it get to me. But that doesn’t mean I’ll let you use me again. We can’t afford to allow anything get in the way of what’s coming next. We can’t afford to be … distracted. You have everything you need.”

“This is about what happened to you growing up.”
The wistful, arbitrary feeling about her own needs burned away with white-hot rage. Damn him.

She managed a shrug but then hit back, forgetting her resolve to remain distanced. “Such a clever spy, Forbes. You know all my secrets. Good on you. Hope your real boss appreciates your diligence. Anything for the cause. It’ll look good in your report. Make sure you spell my name right.”

“That’s not—” He growled something under his breath and stalked over to a folding table, kicking a chair out of the way.

“I’m leaving. And don’t pull anything like this again.” She made her weak knees stiffen so her legs could carry her past him.

“It became so much more, Addison.” He turned and spread his hands. “I can’t go back. I wish I could. If I’d known what it could become, I’d have waited. Until you knew who I really was.”

She shut her eyes tightly against a new shard of pain in her chest before gaining the exit, not able to form a coherent response. A terrible sense of loss hollowed her senseless, but she schooled her features.

 

About the author:

 Allyson Young aka Peri Elizabeth Scott lives in cottage country, Manitoba, Canada. She and her husband pretend to work well together in their seasonal business.
She has always enjoyed the written word, and after reading an erotic romance, quite by mistake, decided to try her hand at penning one. That was followed by a mix of spicy (Ally) and sweet (Peribeth) romances in various genres as well as a post-apocalyptic adventure without a lick of romance by Peribeth.
A bestselling Amazon author, a hybrid, and a coauthor, as of April 2018 she has published seven series and several standalones, with others in the works.

A FAR CRY FROM HOME by Peri Elizabeth Scott @evernightpub

Blurb:

Regan Ferguson knows little past running The Inn, her home
since her adoption. Again orphaned, she’s dealt another blow. Her father never
repaid a loan, the recipient being Maddox Ferguson, her newfound, sexy cousin.
 
Intrigued by the woman he never knew existed, Maddox is awed
by her tenacity and determination to continue with The Inn. He makes her a loan
to give her the opportunity to learn for herself how impossible the task,
rather than personally destroying any chance to explore the connection between
them. However, he quietly lines up potential buyers as a fallback plan.
 
Regan eventually has that epiphany, only to accidentally
determine Maddox’s plan. Feeling betrayed and confused, she secretly signs the
buyout and hits the road with her cat, Oscar.
 
Maddox follows, and without The Inn between them they find
their happily ever after—Regan learns that home is wherever her heart is.

Buy Links: 

Excerpt:

She stuck out her hand, and he fancied she saw it as an olive branch. The hostility she’d initially projected was gone, and he took the opportunity to encroach into her space. Clasping her small, work-roughened hand in his much larger one, a frisson of energy sparked between them and he felt her quiver.
 

Fascinated, he watched as she strove to regain her composure, while he allowed his desire to show. Staring into her eyes, the pale-blue of her irises consumed by the dilation of her pupils, he read her need. He tugged her to his chest, the clean smell of soap and water, and something uniquely Regan, wafting from her.

Her head tipped back and he dropped his mouth down on hers, the immediate connection hardening his flesh to the point of pain. She relaxed into his hold and he tasted her with desperate intent. His fingers wove through the silky mass of her hair, holding her steady, and she moaned deep in her throat. She pressed closer, her arms wreathing around his neck.

He somehow brought it to a close, over long before he wanted it to be, but his conscience pricked hard. He’d promised her the time and money to bring The Inn up to snuff, somehow unable to resist. And now he’d honor his commitment, intuiting the importance of this woman determining her own destiny. Not a fling, not like with his other women.

His libido jeered and prodded at him but knew to allow nature to take its course. Wherever this connection with Regan was going, he wouldn’t hurry nor derail it.

As they both caught their breath, he gently set her away from him, his hands on her lithe waist, until she steadied on her stool. “I normally don’t seal business deals with a kiss,” he said, aware his tone held a certain rasp. Clearing his throat, he continued, “It’s been a … momentous day.”

Her slender throat working in a swallow, she said, “I’ve never sealed a business deal before.”

He knew she wasn’t experienced and doubted she kissed every man she’d just met with fervor and without meaning anything by it. Aching for her, he clamped down on his physical need and did his best to appear suave and unruffled. “We have a deal, Regan. I’ll bring my things in and get settled while you get organized. You’ll need a material list, among other things.”

Visibly drawing her composure around her like flexible armor, she slipped from the stool and turned her back on him, clearing away the dishes on the island. “Sounds good. I’ll just tidy up and then sit down with pen and paper. Lists are good.”

Holding hard on to his own equanimity, he nodded and headed out for his car. Some fresh air would clear his head and cool him down.

About the Author:

 

Writing for years, along with her alter ego and three co-authors, she has published over 50 novels and reads almost anything she can get her hands on.

 

 

 

THE TATTERED BRIDE by Peri Elizabeth Scott

 
 
Childhood traumas lurk deep. Victoria Sparrow knows that. Especially when one’s father rejects one as not being worthy. Her romantic relationships founder, until Logan Doherty. He gives her reason to believe in goodness and true love, and she commits her heart and soul to him.
 
No longer prey to her damaged, young self, Victoria eagerly looks forward to their upcoming marriage—until she meets Logan at the altar. He informs her the wedding is off before their assembled friends and family, and will not tell her why.
 
Cast back into the nightmare of rejection, a devastated Victoria undertakes the momentous task of putting her life back together, her trust broken, her worst fears realized.
 
Meanwhile, Logan is working equally hard to deal with the secretive events that led to that cruel rejection, and then he plans to make it up to his tattered bride. If she will forgive him.
 
 

Excerpt:

 
The world narrowed to him and her, and a little slice of churning emotions she couldn’t decipher. “You’re calling off the wedding. Our wedding. Now.” Just in case she hadn’t heard him correctly. This had the makings of a horrible, sick joke…
Shoving a hand through his hair, he obviously struggled to meet her stare. His tawny eyes were turbulent. “I am. I … just decided. It’s—”
“What?” Victoria tumbled to it, falling into the abyss of her history. Deep down, she knew why. Too bad he’d only just decided. Now. At this inopportune time. All her issues and stupid insecurities washed over her from wherever they’d been banished to, banished by Logan’s resolute pursuit and sincere belief in her. He’d addressed her fears, made her whole—and now? Now her tender underbelly was exposed—without a shred of armor—for the deathblow. The sublime lovemaking of a mere few hours earlier faded in the face of it.
“I—” Real pain and misery now seemed to burn in his eyes, and despite her terrified anticipation, she wanted to soothe him. Through set lips, he continued, “I don’t have the words to tell you why Victoria. I’m sorry. But the wedding is off.”
Still, she waited, believing he would somehow embellish, give her an explanation that wouldn’t make this about her, but he stood there mutely, now staring someplace over her shoulder. She checked out the direction of that gaze—maybe there was an answer there, but she saw only a watercolor of a pastoral scene. Please.
She let her pride crumble and begged. “Logan. This doesn’t make any sense. We… Only this morning…”
He shook his head and straightened to his full height. “It’s off.”
Deep inside there was an utter certainty that it did indeed make sense. He’d figured her out. Seen to the core of her the way others had. In despair, she gave up the fight to believe in him and their love in response to his firm declaration. The Victoria of her childhood emerged, in blind response, lashing out to hide from the truth.
 “Was it the thrill of the chase? And then when you caught me, you became afraid you were settling? That there’s something better around the corner?”
She didn’t want to wait for a response. She had to leave. Now. What would get her past the sideways looks and the knowing stares? The church was full of family and friends—and others who had probably predicted this very moment…
“Victoria. You need to calm down. It’s not like that.”
“Calm. Down?” She was aware her voice was climbing as she talked over him, and the small room, the one where she and Logan would have been closeted to sign the papers finalizing their marriage, wasn’t soundproof. She modulated her tone the very best she could, humiliation and pain squeezing her very being. “What is it like, then, exactly?”
“I can’t say.”
“Tell me.”
He looked away. “I can’t.”
Dropping her beautiful bouquet of red roses, entwined with baby’s breath and white, embossed ribbon on the desk, the air currents disturbed the uncompleted marriage papers. They fluttered, mocking her. She stared up at the face of the man she loved. And faced the realization that she indeed still loved him. That part, at least, hadn’t changed despite the mortification of being dumped at the freaking altar. Love. She thought it was love. Too bad it wasn’t real.
“And I’m supposed to take that and be calm!”
“Yes, calm down.” His face was set in grim determination, his eyes hot. “We’ll … we’ll get through this.”
She narrowed her eyes and leaned into him. What couldn’t she be one of those classy women who took this kind of thing in stride and walked away without making a scene? Maybe she could be. Drawing on a reserve of strength she wasn’t aware she possessed, she said, “I’m calm. Dead calm. So shut up now. I never want to hear your voice again, let alone set eyes on you.”
Squaring her shoulders, she closed off his next attempt to speak. She avoided his outstretched hand and ignored the sudden abject despair written across his handsome features. Was he embarrassed? If he didn’t want a scene, why in hell had he chosen this public place to dump her? Flinging the door open to the main part of the church, she surveyed the people filling the pews. Those congregated there stilled into silence, with only an occasional murmur marring the quiet. Dozens of pairs of eyes looked in their direction. Victoria stepped forward. Classy. She could do this.
 
Buy links:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

About the Author:

Peri Elizabeth Scott lives in Manitoba, Canada. She recently closed her part-time private practice as a social worker and child play therapist. She and her husband have a seasonal business and pretend to work well together.

Writing for years, mostly short stories and poetry, she has published dark erotica under another pen name and reads everything she can lay her hands on.

Website: http://www.perielizabethscott.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/perielizabeth.scott
Email: peribeth@hotmail.ca

 

RULER’S CONCUBINE by Peri Elizabeth Scott @evernightpub

Rulers-Concubine-evernightpublishing-2016-finalimage

Thank you for having me! Ruler’s Concubine represents two different species attempting a connection, and proves that regardless of distinct differences, love will carry the day.

Ruler’s Concubine by Peri Elizabeth Scott

Publisher: Evernight Publishing  

Released: September 2, 2016

Word Count: 66,204

Blurb:

 
Meridia is headed for extinction, unless a compatible species can be found. The backward planet, Earth, the one the Meridians stripped of technology now holds the only promising species in the Galaxy. As Ruler, Lysett Daboort will do his duty and choose a royal concubine from those women ‘liberated’ from Earth, but that is all it will be—until he meets Celeste Raynor.
 
Celeste is barely subsisting on Earth and isn’t enamored with becoming one of Meridia’s concubines, despite the esteem afforded their females. But there is nothing left for her at home and she isn’t averse to having a child to love, not to mention a caring, supportive partner. Until she meets the Ruler himself.
 
The Ruler resists Celeste’s appeal and she refuses his arrogant approach, yet they must somehow come to terms. Lysett rules supreme, or does he? Because love has the most power of all.

 

Excerpt:

 
This isn’t happening. This is not happening. If she kept repeating those words then surely it would be true and she’d miraculously wake up from this erotic nightmare and in her own bed. Except it wasn’t a nightmare and she most certainly wasn’t in her assigned bed—or even on her own planet. Although her imagination was fertile—and she’d seen pictures of him—it was unlikely to manifest the enormously good looks and incredible physique of the alien male who was stripping right before her very eyes. Yes, stripping. Removing all of his clothes, not five feet from where she lay on a bed constructed of some otherworldly material that both cushioned and restrained her. Had it only been yesterday when Bast told her today would be the day? No wonder she hadn’t slept well, thinking about this. And why did this Ruler look even better in person?
Once he’d overcome his reticence to speak so frankly with her, Bast had prepared her with stories of his Master’s need, of his sexual prowess and all the pleasures he would bestow, not to mention that cup of elixir she’d swallowed down.
Being assured it was the planet’s best aphrodisiac had her quaffing the liquid as though it were a life saver. Its effects were marked almost immediately as she cataloged an increase in her body temperature and a definite aching in her private parts with embarrassingly obvious lubrication accompanying the throbbing. Even her breasts had ached, the nipples tightening and beading in reaction to the potion.  
But the effect had worn off because Lysett had been detained for a considerable period. The delay had given her too much time to reflect on her decision and the strange glowing feelings throughout her body had diminished—until he walked through the door. His good looks stole her breath, and when he began to take his clothes off, she wanted to do shocking, sexual things with him. The emotional and physical swings made her stomach lurch.
Her uninfluenced sexual-self recognized the potency of such a male, and to say she wasn’t naturally aroused would be untrue. Her body acknowledged a male suited to her, awash with chemistry and basic animal instinct. It was simply the circumstances that brought her here, and the stark implications of the contract that spoiled their first interaction. Why hadn’t he deviated from so-called royal tradition and spent some time with her beforehand? Surely Bast had relayed that even an initial chat would be optimum.
Celeste’s heart rate doubled, then tripled, when Lysett’s erection sprang forth as his lower garments were yanked down, and dark spots swam in her vision. That part of him was a duskier gold than the rest of his burnished skin, and freaking huge.
     “Shhh, Lady.” Bast’s caramel tones spoke soothingly in her right ear, and one of his hands tentatively patted her shoulder. She’d very nearly forgotten he was still in the room with her—with her and his Master, although he had handled the process clinically and indicated he would leave before… “You are prepared for this union, as we discussed. It will be over before you know it, and if you get with offspring this first time, there will be no need for further joinings. Unless you wish them. And to beget other children.”
Well, didn’t that make her feel special? No pressure either. Merely a vessel out here in space, far away from home, to be used. She blinked away the tears that welled in reaction. Where was her voice? She could still say no…
The Ruler paused in his approach to the bed and glared at Bast after he spoke, though that look encompassed her as well. Celeste had never felt so naked—or so vulnerable. She knew what was supposed to happen. She thought she was ready. Not. And to think she’d scoffed at the wait, chuckled about others procreating before this man. No one would dare. Shocking need warred with apprehension.
“You assured me she was prepared, Bast.” Lysett’s perfect features set in angry lines and those remarkable green eyes now appeared as cold and frozen as that small pond at her home place in the winter months. She tried to use the memory of Earth to distract her, and it caused a homesick shudder to take over her entire body, the gentle clasp of the bed’s fabric undulating to keep her in place.
Lysett’s attention snapped fully to her in an instant, his orbs now glowing with green fire as the vertical slash of his pupils elongated. His gaze raked her body, lingering on her breasts and the apex of her thighs. Despite her limited experience with men, let alone alien men, Celeste recognized lust and desire and her body responded. Or maybe it was apprehension.
“She is prepared, Master. I do assure you. It is merely that a period of time has passed since we expected you to attend her, and it is no surprise that your concubine is experiencing a trifle of anxiety.”
Even with the translator chip, Bast’s wording felt off to her, and she decided to add her own voice. This was going to happen, this attending to her, no matter how she second-guessed her decision, and she believed Bast when he promised she’d be safe here. Having sex—joining—with his Master until she conceived was something she could do. Women did it all the time, had done it over the eons. It wasn’t like she was being forced or anything. And she wasn’t a prostitute, although that profession got a bad rap as far as she was concerned when one considered women had to survive somehow.
She was, according to the contract, a revered commodity, a virgin concubine—who wasn’t going to be a virgin much longer—a concubine who would bear a child for the alien ruler, right? And if the baby was female, she too would be cherished and Lysett would try again to beget a son. And again… All of Bast’s teachings slipped through her brain with lightning speed. Celeste shivered and quit thinking about all those possibilities and focused on what she’d been promised.
She would want for nothing, be well taken care of, and ultimately, kept safe. The presenter’s words and those of Bast rattled around in her head. Given her past circumstances, it was a no-brainer, and she couldn’t go home. Her body was up for it, and her mind had accepted it was the best out of all her choices. So it must be her heart throwing up the roadblock, looking for romance, all because of his pictures and the wonderful things his first servant had said about him.
That was nonsense. Just look at the agony love caused a person. Her stupid heart must be masochistic. This was the best deal she’d get and it was time she said something. There was no way she could go through this process again. Humiliation drowned her common sense. She moistened her lips and addressed Lysett, who was busily engaged in a staring contest with Bast.
“I am prepared, sir. Sir. Ruler. I won’t give you any trouble.”
His eyes froze through to their depths again and his dark brows drew together. She noted his erection didn’t flag at all, though. He might be annoyed, but it didn’t affect his arousal. The wide head glistened in the well-lit chamber, with his natural lubricant beading at the tiny slit. She had timidly asked if her deflowering couldn’t take place in the dark, but Bast refused, saying that tradition didn’t allow it. Spread eagle as she was, there was little left to the imagination, and she flushed again with embarrassment and no small shame. Lysett was superbly made, muscled and lean, with broad shoulders, long thick legs, and narrow hips. She was … well, she was short, and small and round, now that she’d had enough to eat. So not like the remaining Meridian females on this planet. And certainly not the cream of the crop of the human females either.
“You were not given leave to speak.” 
Celeste didn’t much care for the way he snarled at her, Ruler or not.

 

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Author Bio:

 
Peri Elizabeth Scott lives in Manitoba, Canada. She recently closed her part time private practice as a social worker and child play therapist. Her love of children extends to the animal world, and her most recent rescue includes a one-eyed cat with an Elvis smirk.
Peribeth and her husband have a seasonal business and pretend to work well together, so she will always have a job.
Writing for years, mostly short stories and poetry, she has published dark erotica under another pen name and reads everything she can lay her hands on.

 

NOT JUST FRIENDS by Peri Elizabeth Scott

 

Not Just Friends

 

Romance on the Go
Evernight Publishing
Published April 28, 2016

Blurb:

He has an insatiable penchant for tall, leggy blondes, and Taylor Simmons finds Nash Porter’s reputation unsettling, despite how much she likes the guy. As she’s come to learn over the years, there’s more to Nash than his assumed sexual prowess, and her short, brunette stature ensures their solid friendship will remain just that.

Except Nash has been invading her personal space of late, and that’s far more unsettling. It’s time to extricate herself from his sphere, because she can’t have anything more than a friendship with someone who reminds her of a past she conquered and left behind. Unless Nash can convince her otherwise…

 

 

 

Excerpt:

 

“Taylor.” Christina made her name sound like a rebuke.

“Hi, Chris.” She concentrated on her driving, the speaker above her head crackling a little.

“You’re not here. It’s Thursday.”

“I told you I had to work. I left you a message.”

“Oh. Today?” Her friend wasn’t great at checking her voicemail.

“Today.”

“You should have texted.”

 “Sorry.”

Voices swelled in the background and a door slammed. “Everyone’s here but you.”

“Again, I’m sorry. The client could only meet after work.” And on any day of the week, so Taylor chose Thursday. A couple of weeks without seeing Nash should put things back to normal.

“So it’s not… Wait a second.” Another door closed, and things were quieter. “So it’s not because of Nash?”

Wait. What? “You’ll have to speak up, Chris. I’m driving and hands free isn’t as clear.”

“It isn’t about Nash?”

“What about him?” There, a nice, nebulous response while she gathered her thoughts.

“Um, Bryan said… Well, he said Nash and you were … exploring something.”

No. And no. He did not. She gripped the wheel and checked her mirror, pulling into the outside lane and finding a place to drive off and stop. The little turnoff was graveled and it gritted beneath the tires, much the same way Christina’s newsflash ground in her brain.

“Taylor?”

“Sorry, traffic.” She slammed the shifter into Park and set her forehead on the steering wheel. Any softer feelings for Nash blew right out the window. “I don’t follow. The thing about Bryan and Nash.”

Christina huffed. “They were talking at work and Nash told Bry that he was interested. In you. Like dating.”

Her laughter might filter through the hands free as more convincing than it sounded in the confines of the car. Bad words hovered in her throat and she swallowed them down. She chose something frivolous to say instead. “What was he smoking?”

“I asked the same thing, Taylor. And you know Nash…”

“I do know Nash.” Taylor leaned her head back on the seat rest. “And I don’t date … guys who have a different woman every week, Chris. What, has he run out of tall, leggy blondes in this state? It’s not that far over the line into the next one. An easy drive.”

They both laughed, but in truth, Taylor felt like crying. She’d known Nash for five years, met him when Christina drew her into their little group. The ensuing years had evoked a deeper, more intimate relationship with all the members, including Nash. She knew his foibles and his strengths. He was a good man and a good friend, and in a short period of time, she managed to overlook—or at least not judge, too much—his way with the ladies. His incredible good looks went a long way, but after seeing them as often as she had, they didn’t have the same impact. Right?

His sense of humor and fairness, his caring for family and friends, kindness to animals, his strong work ethic, and total honesty made up most of the fabric that was Nash Porter. She flinched in that moment. Maybe he saw past Taylor’s definitely not leggy, blonde, and beautiful appearance and appreciated who she was behind her exterior. What had he said? Kind and gentle—when she wasn’t on a righteous crusade—and with a core of steel. Hardly superficial, when she thought on it. She stared into the rear view mirror, surveying her tousled brown hair that curled in any amount of humidity, but was soft with natural highlights, and framed her small face nicely.

Her eyes were her best feature, widely spaced beneath feathered eyebrows, their hazel depths shifting with her moods or reflecting the colors she wore. Today they were green. Green for uncertainty. She ran a finger down her straight nose and tapped her lips. She was pressing them too tightly together of late, so she relaxed them into their natural fullness. Centerfold material she was not, but she wasn’t ugly either. And she kept herself in shape, walking every day and finding time in her schedule for yoga.

Her just less than a C-cup breasts matched the rest of her, even if she sometimes longed to be a few inches taller. Standing on tip toes could be a bummer. With a sigh, she focused on the conversation with Christina.

“Sorry, Chris. I missed most of that.”

“I said for sure Nash must have run out of those blondes because he hasn’t been seeing anyone for weeks now. Maybe months. Like a drought. Haven’t you noticed the lack of references to any women in his life? The guys aren’t even bugging him about them. And he’s always around lately.”

Taylor was really glad she wasn’t driving. Her brain ticked over, sorting through the times Nash had “just happened by” at her work of late, with a cup of her favorite tea, saying he had business. It hadn’t made much of an impact, seeing as he was an architect and often consulted with the interior designers—including her—in her office building. He was being Nash, kind and thoughtful for a friend.

The teaming up with her on game night, blocking Graham’s attempts to partner her, was different, and more frequent. She liked Graham, but he drove her crazy when they partnered up. When she joined forces with Nash … they fit. They got one another and it felt so comfortable and fun. Tick, tick, tick.

Showing up to carry her groceries to the lift those two times when she’d bemoaned that task at game night—she hadn’t invited him in then either, and he’d given her that little salute when she’d thanked him and … dismissed him? Lord. Was she living in a different dimension? She hadn’t meant to be rude…

He’d been at the coffee house nearly every time she made it there—and Morris the barista and Nash exchanged those meaningful glances, like they had a secret. Tick, tick, tick. Had he been … courting … her?

 

Links:

 

 

About the author:

Peri Elizabeth Scott
lives in Manitoba, Canada. Peribeth recently closed her part time private practice as a social worker and child play therapist, and now s
he and her husband have a seasonal business and pretend to work well together. Writing for
years, mostly short stories and poetry, she has published dark erotica under
another pen name and reads everything she can lay her hands on.