A Different Kind of Super Alpha Hero
The fairy tales we devoured as kids promised us HEA with a handsome prince. But is it possible for someone who “looks like Abe Lincoln with a buzz cut” to do what he thinks is right without giving a damn what the world thinks? What if he’s not mega-rich? Or the CEO of the world’s most powerful—or secret—organization in the world? Can he still be so hot the air sizzles when he enters a room?
What if he’d walk barefoot over hot coals in hell to protect his mother and younger brother from hurt and humiliation? What if he’s the human companion to a tough, nasty old tomcat? What if, as a maverick cop, he gives his superiors the finger to help the prime suspect in her missing husband’s presumed murder? What if the prime suspect—as beautiful as a fairy-tale princess—would rather kiss a snake on the lips than trust him? Would he still risk his career and his life to do the right thing?
When fleshing out my romantic suspense novel, Presumed Guilty, these are a few of the questions I asked. I also wanted to know if my super-alpha hero had any secrets? (He does). Can a SAH laugh at himself? Why does he risk playing with fire? Does commitment scare him? (Absolutely. For him, commitment is forever). Can he accept the object of his commitment seems interested more in satisfying her pent-up sexual frustrations than building a new life?
Asking over a hundred questions like these helped me know Nick Ketchum and conclude he is a true SAH
I hope the excerpt below compels you to read the book to see what’s in his heart.
Here’s the scene setup: Two days after meeting Robin Lamy, Nick asks her to go for coffee. At his house. His reasoning? To escape the constant sleazeratti stalking her. Alarms ringing, she agrees to go—even before she learns Nick has turned in his badge defending her innocence. At his house, his old tomcat entices her into Nick’s bedroom. (You’ll have to read the first hundred pages to enjoy all the foreplay that has gone on to this point).
From Allie Hawkins’ novel, Presumed Guilty
Their eyes locked. It was so quiet he heard atoms colliding around them. He didn’t know which of them moved first. Then, they came together, kissing as if they’d been lovers forever.
Happening too fast, he thought, still hoping to find the OFF button between his legs. But her scent of roses hijacked thinking, bypassed reason, overrode sanity.
“Crazy,” she murmured.
“Insane.” Wrong, too. She was lonely. Scared. Vulnerable.
Nick dropped to the bed, pulled her onto his lap, couldn’t believe her lack of resistance.
Her sandals hit bare wood.
Lips parted, she slid her hand between his legs.
Thought gave way to longing.
Smarting from the meltdown with Chief Waverly, disgusted for disgracing Pop’s name, Nick leaned into her, caressed her hair, and dragged his fingers down her long, incredible, kissable neck. Heat radiated off her, wrapping them in a fiery cocoon of primal need. Her soft, hot mouth met his. Their sizzling tongues touched, deepened, retreated.
Which didn’t matter because she started stroking his zipper.
Nick shuddered and trailed his fingers down her spine, to her waistband. He stopped at the tiny, embedded zipper in her slacks.
“Like this.” She twisted, put her hand on his and guided his fingers.
The zipper glided downward. When he touched her scalding skin, they both gasped. Gently, he pinched her bare ass and she nipped his ear. Sweet Jesus.
“Take off my bra.” Her voice was breathy.
“Can do.” He slid his hands under her silk Tee. His fingertips soaked up the satin skin covering hard muscle in her back and abs.
She moaned and brought his mouth to hers. The kiss deepened. A light exploded inside Nick. Reason fought to get a toehold, but surrendered as he unhooked her bra. She slipped her hand inside his pants. In a Hollywood lip-lock, they thrashed out of their clothes.
Except for her tiny, see-through white thong.
She straddled him, head back, fist in his chest hair, a female warrior breaking in a wild stallion.
And he gave her the ride of her life, their cries intermingling as the present receded.
He waited for Robin, waited till she yelled, “Now! Now!”
Allie Hawkins Bio
Allie Hawkins, and her alter ego Barbara Plum, got married in Kansas City, raised two kids there, taught adolescent boys English and Spanish and developed adult programs for the Kansas City Public Library. Creating marketing materials for the world’s largest software company honed her fiction-writing skills. She has published two romantic comedies as Barbara Plum. She has also published two romantic suspense novels and is currently writing a YA paranormal romance. When she’s not walking, reading or dancing, she lives near the fast lane in Silicon Valley with her own super-alpha hero.
Today’s the start of the High Octane Heroes Blog Tour! Be sure to check out the blog tour post for the list of prizes! You’re going to want to follow along for the next two weeks! In the meantime, we have two stops today:
I hope you’ve enjoyed all the excerpts we’ve shared, and that we’ve convinced you this book is something you can’t miss! Today, I’m sharing the last excerpt. This one’s from Christine D’Abo’s story. Her hero was a slight departure from the military/cop heroes we had, but I loved the story, and a UFC fighter is as super alpha a guy as you can get, right? Enjoy!
From “Pumping Iron” by Christine D’Abo
Lila adjusted her sports bra, unfolding the doubled-over band, and hoped she wasn’t about to make a huge mistake. Her recovery had been a long hard road, one she’d had to fight through inch by inch to be able to reclaim her body. But she’d made it and now stood on the other side, not simply back to her old self, but even better than before.
She only had one challenge left to conquer—Kyle.
Images of him kicking the asses of other UFC fighters were still fresh in her mind. She’d been intimidated as hell when she’d discovered he was going to be her trainer, having watched him beat and bloody men in the cage both on closed-circuit TV and at the gym. Kyle was vicious when he stepped in front of his opponent; any compassion he might have evaporated as the door locked.
Even in retirement he wasn’t soft or compassionate when it came to training. He didn’t give a shit about how much she hurt and kept pushing her to do things right. Harder, faster, more, goddammit! After a few sessions, she stopped being intimidated and really started hating him for making her work so fucking hard. It was a damn good thing her rehab was over and her body was in such good shape, otherwise she would have reamed him out for being an asshole.
Lila still might do that, right after she fucked his brains out.
Tightening the laces on her running shoes, she stepped out into the weight room and quickly found the object of her lust. Stretched out on the weight bench, Kyle was cranking out a series of bench presses with ease. From this angle Lila could see the sheen of sweat covering his biceps, his calves and thighs, the tremble in his body as he pushed himself past the limits of what most people would consider attempting. Typical Kyle. Never letting anyone, not even his body, tell him what he could do.
The clang of metal on metal filled the room as he dropped the weight bar back onto the rack and sat up. He lifted his tank top, wiping the sweat from his eyes with the material, exposing his hard abs to her. His face bore the scars of years in the cage. His nose was crooked from having been repeatedly broken. The long scar down his cheek wasn’t clearly visible from this distance, but she still knew it was there.
Shit, he was beautiful. Not that she’d ever say that to him. No frigging way.
She caught his attention as he stood. Lila swallowed down her nervousness and gave him a little wave. “Hi there.”
“What are you doing here?” No preamble, no pleasantries. “We finished your sessions last week.”
“Yeah, I know. Mike out front said it was okay. I know you’re probably getting ready to go home for the night.”
“I was doing my workout.” His black hair was cropped short against his head, a conservative look that didn’t quite mesh with his too-direct personality. “Mike closing up?”
His direct stare pierced her, making her squirm and her nipples harden. “I think so. The place is empty.” It was the main reason she’d come on a Monday night. She’d learned the ebb and flow of the client base over the past year, and this was the only time she figured would work. Neutral ground, but no distractions.
Bracing his hands on his hips, Kyle lowered his chin and narrowed his gaze. “Are you okay?”
The little confession she’d spent a week preparing evaporated from her memory. “Um, I wanted to talk to you about something.”
Kyle crossed the room, swallowing the distance in four wide strides. He was barefoot, but that didn’t make him any less intimidating. She’d seen the damage he could do with a roundhouse kick to someone’s face.
Lila knew she should be talking, explaining that no matter how hard she’d tried, she couldn’t get Kyle out of her dreams. No, dreams were too pedestrian a description. Those were hardcore erotic fantasies, starring her and a very dominant personal trainer.
Lila showering, surprised when Kyle would come in and fuck her. Lila finishing a workout, only to have Kyle demand she drop to her knees and suck his cock. Being at home, surprised when it was Kyle at her door, demanding to be let in.
She had it bad and she didn’t have a clue what to do about it.
Looking up into his brown gaze, Lila knew she only had one chance to do this right. Direct and to the point. It was the only thing he’d appreciate. Taking a deep breath, she straightened up, widened her stance slightly and steeled her nerve.
“I’m attracted to you.” There. That wasn’t so hard. “And I can’t seem to get you out of my mind.”
Kyle cocked an eyebrow. “Oh?”
“Yeah. I’m sure that happens a lot to you. Clients developing a bit of a crush and all that. And I know you probably had groupies from the circuit. I kept telling myself that it’s normal to have a thing for the man who helped me recover my body. I mean, you deal with attractive people every day, and I know there are professional considerations too. You can’t sleep with a client and everything. But we finished our sessions, and I’ve actually switched gyms too. And even if nothing can happen between us, I wanted to let you know. That I’m attracted to you. So…yeah.”
At some point during her ramblings, Lila had dropped her gaze and was now staring at his chest. Sweat had soaked through the thin cotton, and she could see the contour of his pecs. His nipples were hard and his deep breathing pressed them against the fabric. She wanted to touch them, lick the salt off his skin. Beg him to touch her.
“Look at me.”
Lila complied without thinking, her gaze snapping back to his. Her lips parted and she fought a moan when she saw the raw hunger coming from him. He hadn’t shaved. The thick stubble accentuated his square jaw and cheeks, making the spidery scars on his face stand out.
Kyle stepped forward, and instinctively she retreated an equal distance. “Yes?”
Kyle stepped closer again, causing her retreat once more. Another two steps and Lila found her back pressed against the wall. The concrete blocks were cold against her bare back, but it did little to stem the rush of hot desire rolling through her. Kyle placed a hand on either side of her head, pinning her in place. The cords of muscles rippled as he flexed. Everything about him was rock hard—his body, demeanor, even the vibe he threw off. It didn’t matter; Lila wanted him.
“Say it again.” His voice was low, commanding in the same way he’d yell at her to do another five push-ups, uge her on to three more reps with the weights, push her to run another half mile. “Lila.”
“I’m attracted to you.” She wanted to swallow past the sudden dryness in her mouth, but she couldn’t make her body comply.
“Why did you choose me as your trainer?”
It was an odd question, but she saw that the answer was important to him. “You were recommended by my physiotherapist. He said that he couldn’t do anything else for me, and that I needed to build my muscle strength.”
The car accident had taken a lot out of her, both mentally and physically. She’d given up on herself for a very long time, gained weight, lived with the pain until Kyle came along and gave her the push she needed to reclaim her life.
“I’d wanted to give up on myself so much over the past year, but you kept me going.” She dropped his gaze once more, unable to handle the intensity any longer. “I didn’t want to disappoint you.”
Kyle took her chin in his hand and lifted it. “Not possible.”
Shit, there was no way she’d be able to be with someone like Kyle. He was the most attractive man she’d ever met. She’d seen the way the women at the gym would preen whenever he walked into the room, the way conversation brightened when he drew close. Hell, even the other men would work a little harder when he came close. Not that Kyle responded to any of it. Which was…odd. “Am I making a fool of myself? Of course I am. I should go.”
“You came here tonight to tell me you were attracted to me.” Kyle leaned in until his mouth hovered above her ear. “Did you think I was going to fuck you?”
Lila’s chest tightened as she sucked in a breath. The scent of sweat and Kyle’s soap filled her senses. It was familiar, equal parts comforting and arousing. Her pussy tingled and grew wet when he nipped at the top of her ear.
“Fuck?” She couldn’t manage more than a whisper. “I…”
“Did you want to see if you could get me out of your system? Scratch the itch?” He lowered his mouth so his lips brushed the side of her neck. “You want to touch my body the way you’ve wanted to for months? See if my muscles are as hard as they look?”
“Christ,” she muttered. “I don’t know.”
Don’t miss these blog dates! There will fun interviews and great prizes along the way (prizes listed below!). Join us!
September 2: MsRomanticReads
September 2: Books to Light Your Fire
September 3: Reviews by Crystal
September 4: The Reading Addict
September 5: Musings and Ramblings
September 6: Reading In Twilight
September 9: Queen of the Night Reviews
September 9: Literal Hotties Naughty Book Reviews - Promo Only
September 9: All I Want and More
September 10: Author Accomplice
September 10: Selena Illyria
September 11: Sharing Links and Wisdom
September 11: Wicked Readings by Tawania
September 12: The Divas of Desire
September 13: Words of Wisdom from The Scarf Princess
Just like Rosalia, the character in my story “Painted,” I hate it when I find myself attracted to the wrong person. There’s nothing more annoying than a smug, powerful, authority figure—and, sometimes there’s nothing hotter either.
Justin, the hero of “Painted,” is a jerk, or at least Rosalia thinks he is, because he represents the enemy. Not only is he her landlord’s nephew, but with his Norse-god good looks, he symbolizes what frightens her—the changes in her Mission District neighborhood from a vibrant Latino center to an increasingly expensive beacon for hipsters, and the likelihood she is about to be priced out of her apartment. Justin has power and privilege and he’s the last person she should want. But oh does she ever, especially when she’s painting her mural on the high scaffolding outside his bedroom window and hears him having sex with his girlfriend.
Rosalia may be afraid of heights, but she is a spunky little thing and she can’t resist “accidentally” dropping a paint jar on the satisfied couple from up where her world is spinning on the third floor of the scaffolding. The girlfriend is indignant. Justin, however, is amused and embarrassed by his girlfriend’s reaction. That’s when Rosalia notices his uniform—he’s not some high-finance suit or yuppy lawyer, but a paramedic at the city’s gritty public hospital, right in the heart of the Mission District. It’s a heroic job and it proves he’s nothing like what she expected.
As Rosalia’s assumptions about Justin unravel one at a time, she discovers only he can help her face her fears about being up on that scaffolding, and about her future.
Have you ever had an unwanted crush on an arrogant boss, a smug professor, or a cocky landlord? And have you ever had the pleasure of finding your assumptions were wrong, and the sexy jerk wasn’t a jerk at all? Do tell!
Leah Ridgewood has written a dozen paranormal, contemporary and erotic novels and novellas under various pen names. But she only lets the naughtiest parts of her imagination out to play when she’s signing Leah’s name to the story. No matter what genre she’s writing, she’s convinced she became a storyteller in bed, as she lay awake imagining how her most improbable fantasies could come true. Her stories are kinky, and sometimes dark, but they always include a fascinating city, quirky characters and unexpected love. In addition to “Painted” she has three novellas available on Amazon for Kindle. You can find her online here: Amazon | Website | Twitter
A sexy SWAT leader rescues a rookie after she’s taken hostage during a bungled undercover assignment
That sums up Brindle Chase’s “Renegade” quite nicely, but doesn’t begin to tell you how hot this story really is! I remember reading it and saying to my dd who was reading stories with me, “Holy shit!”
The action scene that opens the story is fabulous! When our hapless heroine is finally safe, she quickly isn’t, again, but only because Renegade is so angry with her he’s beside himself. I’ll give you a little taste, but you have to promise yourself to buy the book and read…the rest of the story!
From “Renegade” by Brindle Chase
She couldn’t help the tears of rejoicing. Horror still assailed every nerve in her body, but she was safe. Adrenaline pumped like furnace blasts through her veins, and she collapsed against him, sobbing.
He held her in his arms and walked her out of the warehouse. She clung to him for dear life, not wanting to let go. Kara buried her face in his chest as the clamor of squad cars, officers and people all around her filled her ears.
Shame replaced the waning heat of adrenaline. There weren’t adjectives powerful enough to describe how badly she had fucked up. She couldn’t face her brothers.
“She all right?” Kara heard Jacobs ask, and she felt Michael bob his head.
Her legs dropped, and she balanced on the five-inch heels still amazingly strapped to her feet. She opened her eyes and blushed at the impassioned gaze Michael aimed at her. She’d never felt more like a rabbit caught by a lion than right then.
Michael snapped his gloves off and tossed them in the squad car. He yanked off his helmet and threw it in as well. Then he turned back and fixed her with another dark glare.
Kara fidgeted beneath his scathing stare and smoothed the folds of the tiny dress draped across her breasts.
A blur came from her right, and his hand snagged the back of her neck and tilted her head back. She gasped, staring at him as he scrutinized her.
“Are you hurt?”
She shook her head. Her wrists were sore, but she was otherwise unharmed. Michael’s abrupt arrival had saved her from untold horrors.
“Yes. I…I’m okay.” The touch of his hand was hot on her skin and sent sparks of arousal straight between her legs.
His hand dropped from her jaw and gripped the front of her dress and pulled. A wave of heat flushed her cheeks. The dress barely covered anything, and she knew her breasts were in full view although his body shielded them from anyone else’s sight. At his mercy, her sex clenched moistly.
“What fucking asshole dressed you in this?”
Kara looked down in shame. “I… I did.”
“Seriously?” His voice was steel and electricity trickling down her spine.
She nodded. His damning gaze narrowed, and she swallowed hard. Kara knew he would never hurt her even though he was the deadliest man she knew.
“Yo, Delaney. Lieutenant wants to debrief Brown,” came a voice from over her shoulder.
Michael nodded, but his stare remained on her. She looked to her open-toed shoes and focused there. Her toenail paint hadn’t chipped through everything.
“I’ll make sure she gets there, but me and her are gonna have a little chat about police work one-oh-one.” His grave voice conjured another lump in her throat and forced her to swallow.
“Get in the car,” he said with an ominously quiet tone.
“I know I screwed—”
Michael snared her wrist before she knew what happened. He spun her to face the open passenger door of the squad car and slapped her ass loudly. It stung but fueled her raging hormones as much as her outrage. Thinking he’d spanked her in front of half the precinct, she whirled in place. The flooding heat reversed from her core to her face. But his massive frame stood in the way and no one had seen. Relief washed through her. Of course he wouldn’t humiliate her like that.
“Get in the fucking car.”
I don’t know about you, but every time I see one of those soldier homecoming commercials on television, I tear up. Dad surprising his son in the classroom? Check. Husband waiting for his wife and daughter in the new house they just bought? Check, check. Camo-clad mom waiting at the airport terminal for her loved ones to pick her up? Pass me the tissues. Every. Damn. Time.
Those heart-melting homecomings were the inspiration for my story in the anthology, DIVING DEEP. Except my couple’s reunion is not so sweet. Well, it is in the end, but at first…not so much. See, I started thinking about how it feels when your soldier leaves, instead of when they come home. The heartbreak and loneliness the person that’s left behind goes through in the wake of their departure.
My heroine, Katie, is a frazzled kindergarten teacher who’s spending the holidays with her boisterous, nosy, extended family. She’s desperate for an escape, anywhere to get a few moments of peace and quiet. When she spies her brother’s diving equipment in the laundry room, she thinks it’s a godsend.
My hero, Jake, is a Navy SEAL home on leave, and the first person he wants to see, touch, taste, is Katie. The last place he expects to find her is at the bottom of a darkened swimming pool. At first, it scares him to death, so he dives in to rescue her, not knowing she has a tank of oxygen down there in the dark with her. When he realizes she’s not actually drowning…
Poor Katie. She’s about to find out how one hot Navy SEAL doles out “punishment” for giving him a fright.
I spotted him looming above me on the edge of the pool deck, his body silhouetted by the landscape lighting surrounding the trees and shrubbery. The rippling water distorted his shape, but I’d still recognize Jake blindfolded. The wide shoulders tapering to a narrow waist, the imposing height and size of him.
He hadn’t yet arrived for the party when I’d slipped away. I should probably be flattered that he’d sought me out over the company of my brother, his best friend. I would be if I didn’t know that his visit was only going to lead to more misery for me in the end.
I remained very still while he put the puzzle pieces together, hands braced on his hips as he looked around, even going so far as to hold my breath so no bubbles broke the surface.
The water nearest the bottom would be dark since I hadn’t bothered turning on the pool lights. Soon enough, though, he would spot my discarded clothing and shoes. The air in my lungs began to burn before it broke from my mouth around the regulator, sending a shimmering cluster of bubbles floating upwards like millions of tiny diamonds.
Jake’s SEAL training immediately took over. I watched as he jerked his shoes off, stripped out of his jacket and shirt, and dove into the water. The realization that I wasn’t actually drowning took about three seconds. Even the near darkness at the bottom of the pool couldn’t obscure the expression on his face, anger rapidly chasing away worry. Then I was being dragged to the surface whether I wanted to go or not.
He tossed the scuba gear onto the deck as if it weighed no more than a marshmallow. The heavy chunk of lead strapped around my ankle kept trying to pull me back under until he unbuckled it and tossed it aside too. I stripped off the mask, adding it to the pile.
I was now trapped between Jake’s big body and the side of the pool. Long, muscled arms caged me in while our ragged breaths heated each other’s face. I tried not to stare at his chest, tried harder not to think about how badly I wanted to sip the water from his smooth golden skin.
“What the fuck, Katie?” He passed a hand over his wet face in agitation. “Were you trying to give me a heart attack?”
“You practically have gills.”
Jake glared. Tiny droplets clung to his obscenely long eyelashes and sparkled in the light. He was so handsome it gave me heart palpitations when I looked at him. “That’s not even remotely funny. You know what I meant.”
“I’m sorry,” I lied.
“No, you’re not. But you’re about to be.”
Want to know how Jake makes Katie sorry? Then point your mouse toward the button at the top of this page that says “Order Book” and grab your copy! Digital format is available now and print releases September 3rd.
Thanks for reading,
I started reading when I was four, thanks to a babysitter who found out the only way to get me to sit still was to put a book in my hand. By the time I entered kindergarten, I’d blown through just about every Little Golden Book ever printed. Ten years later, much to my mother’s dismay, I found her stash of paperback romance novels. She tried to divert me back to something more chaste by buying me Harlequins, but I still snuck copies of her Kathleen Woodiwiss’s and Johanna Lindsey’s when she wasn’t looking. Shanna, The Flame and the Flower, and Fires of Winter will always hold special places in my heart because they introduced me to roguish heroes, headstrong heroines, and the trouble they could get into together.
I live in a swampy little corner of north-central Florida with my family, both the two-legged and four-legged variety. I love to read, run hot and cold in regards to cooking, and I never miss an episode of Justified, Longmire, or Dexter. I guess I like justice in all its various forms.
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High Octane Heroes—the name says it all! A wonderful collection of diverse stories with one thing in common: full-blown alpha male love interests. These are tales of irresistible he-men, hot-blooded and ready for action. And these guys also know how to love. They’re not afraid to show their softer side—but only to the right woman…
So who is that woman? For every High Octane Hero featured in the anthology, there’s a woman who catches his attention or captures his heart. Some of these are true damsels in distress, in need of rescue by the man of their dreams. But some of them are strong, independent women who are in total control of their lives and don’t need a man to lead the way. Surely they don’t want rescuing…?
Well, I believe there are moments when we all do!
So, what sort of heroine did I pick for my story in the collection, “Mountain Man?” Ah… Melody. She’s certainly in need of rescue and she’d be the first to admit that the predicament in which she finds herself is totally of her own making.
Here’s how the story opens:
“Hi, my name’s Melody and I’m one of those idiots you see on the news reports…”
You know the type of idiots I mean? The man that nearly drowns when he falls through ice trying to save the dog that isn’t in danger. The family that go out to sea in an inflatable toy raft. The old lady who drives twenty miles down the freeway in the wrong direction without noticing the cars piling up around her. Those idiots.
And now, because of what happened up in the mountains last weekend, I’m one of them too. So I’m going to tell you exactly what happened and perhaps you’ll avoid making those same mistakes and looking like a fool. You see, I’m the idiot that went up the mountain in trainers, without a map. That idiot.
Right from the start it was my fault. It was my idea to go hiking in the late autumn and it was me who persuaded Frankie to come, when it was obviously against her better judgment. It was me who left the map in the trunk of the car and it was me who couldn’t be bothered to dig out my hiking boots. Frankie didn’t even have any, walking not being her thing, but I told her trainers would be fine; we’d stick to the paths…
Here are some of the lessons that I learnt.
- Just because it’s sunny in the morning, it doesn’t mean it’s going to stay that way.
- Fog can come down real fast on a mountain.
- Trainers offer no support to ankles.
- Paths can vanish abruptly.
- Shorts do not keep you warm.
- Blundering on when you can’t see where you’re going can lead to accidents.
Now I know those things.
Luckily for Melody and her friend Frankie, there’s a High Octane Hero around to save the day—and I don’t think I’m giving anything away by telling you that. After all, it says so on the cover of the book!
Tamsin Flowers loves to write light-hearted erotica, often with a twist in the tail/tale and a sense of fun. Her stories have appeared in a wide variety of anthologies and she is now graduating to novellas with the intention to pen her magnum opus in the very near future. In the meantime, like most erotica writers, she finds herself working on at least ten stories at once: while she figures out whose leg belongs in which story, you can find out more about her at Tamsin’s Superotica or Tamsin Flowers.
With the official release date, September 3rd, of High Octane Heroes: Erotic Romance for Women right around the corner, I’d like to take a moment and introduce you to the TWO high octane heroes in my story HEATED NEGOTIATIONS.
Donovan Wolfe’s job as Detroit’s Special Response Team captain requires an unnatural level of cool detachment. To save lives, he must assess every situation without the interference of emotion, calculate risks, formulate a plan and execute it with laser-sharp efficiency. His years fighting in every dark cave and dust bowl in the Middle East as a Special Forces Army Ranger, sharpened these skills to a deadly point. In order to streamline response times in hostage situations, Donovan requests Paige Cline, the city’s negotiations specialist be placed under his command. When the commander agrees, Donovan hears Sergeant Cline’s explosive reaction reverberates through the department. Surprisingly, it stirs in him lust, and a dormant emotion thought long dead. Finding another more primal reason to coax Paige’s surrender, Donovan enters his most challenging mission to date.
Paige Cline busts her hump, working twice as hard in the male dominated world of law enforcement for half the respect. After more than a decade on the force, three chevrons finally decorate her Sergeant’s uniform. Add the promotion to lead negotiator for Motor City, answerable only to the commander, and her career is made. Being raised by a cowering mother and an abusive drunkard father, had its perks; unrivaled skills as a hostage negotiator. Free from a toxic ex-husband, Paige focuses on saving lives and catching bad guys. Everything is as it should be, until the SRT captain tries to usurp her authority.
New to town, Paige decides to introduce herself, and put him in his proper place. If only she’d known where that place would be.
Paige clutched a fistful of Abercrombie-style button down and pivoted. The college boy, who smelled of cheep whiskey, completed his decent head first to the concrete without taking her along for the ride. Bobbing around his friends, who all looked as cute and as wasted, she continued winding through the crowd. While most around her craned their necks toward the sky mouths agape at the colorful spectacle of friendly little bombs, she kept her target in view. The Fourth of July crush of one million warm Detroit bodies wasn’t enough to deter her lust for vengeance. It had been twenty-four hours since she’d been royally screwed and reaped no pleasure from the experience. Tonight she would get a release.
The security guard working the door of the City-County Building nodded at Paige’s badge and she rushed through the lobby. Up the elevator and down a corridor of cubicle sized offices, Paige saw the door labeled “Roof Access” in the distance. After two ground eating strides in its direction the door swung wide with a metal smack and two Special Response Team members in full tact gear walked into the hallway.
At the sight of the blacked-out commandos, their faces obscured by balaclavas and bodies loaded with Kevlar and weaponry, adrenalin shot through her veins like a bullet from a gun. All thoughts of fatigue, from lack of sleep over the past forty-eight hours or the hour-and-a-half it took warring the crowd to get here, vanished. Shoulders back and chin up she stopped directly in front of the two men.
Two sets of eyes before her went wide followed by head shaking. The tallest of the two hitched a thumb toward the access door. Paige inclined her head, a small gesture of thanks, and pushed past them.
One of the men, no way to know which since she wasn’t looking, cleared his throat. “Sergeant Cline, should we call an ambulance?”
The corners of her mouth turned up when she replied. “No. Call the medical examiner.”
I hope you enjoyed this sneak peek at “Heated Negotiations,” one of many fabulous stories in the High Octane Heroes: Erotic Romance for Women Anthology!
Unlike most writers I know, many of whom turned to writing well into their adulthood, I was quite young when I became a writer. As an eighth-grader I wrote a short story, showed it to my mother, and told her what I wanted to do with my life. Soon after that, she bought me a typewriter.
My first published piece—a poem in my junior high school literary magazine when I was in ninth grade—was followed by contributions to my high school literary magazine, terms as staff writer and later editor of my high school newspaper, and publication of a science fiction fanzine that ultimately featured work by several writers who were then, or later became, well-known science fiction, fantasy, and horror authors.
So, while other young men tossed baseballs, threw footballs, and dribbled basketballs, I collected rejection slips from magazine editors, finally making my first professional short story sale while still a teenager. Since then I’ve authored more than a dozen books, several hundred articles and essays, and more than 1,000 short stories. I’ve been published in nearly every genre but have been most successful writing crime fiction and women’s fiction, two genres that couldn’t possibly be more unalike. Along the way I’ve also written a fair bit of erotic fiction, much of it intended for a male readership.
My crime fiction—published in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine, and many other publications—features high-octane heroes who are cops, private eyes, and spies, as well as many not-so-heroic characters from the other side of the law. My women’s fiction—published regularly in True Confessions and True Story—features strong women from all walks of life who juggle careers, family, and relationships. My erotic fiction—published in Penthouse Letters, Playgirl, and many anthologies—features various combinations of men and women engaged in carnal congress.
I had the opportunity to blend all three genres in “Big Guns,” my contribution to High Octane Heroes.
When I read the anthology’s Call for Submissions, I suspected most potential contributors would focus on obvious heroes—men in uniform such as soldiers, police officers, and fire fighters—so I went a different direction. I wondered how a woman might deal with her inner conflict if she found herself attracted to a man who was everything she knew shouldn’t attract her: a drug dealer’s “muscle.”
Before the protagonist can reconcile her emotions, things turn violent and she finds herself pointing the business end of a sawed-off shotgun at the chest of the man she’s been lusting after.
Find out what happens next when you read “Big Guns” in High Octane Heroes.