I hope your weekend is off to a great start. If you’re in the mood for a Hot Historical Romance, I have an excerpt from my debut, Wrath of the Fire God. Here’s a teaser.
EXCERPT: Aemilia found Marcus pacing her room. He had pulled the coverlet from the bed and wrapped it around his waist, hiding his nudity. When she walked in, he dropped it, thank the gods, and rushed over, grabbing both of her hands. The panicked look in his eyes frightened her.
“You must listen to me,” he said. The little lump at the front of his throat twitched. “You are in danger. We must flee before – ”
“Shhh.” She brushed disheveled waves of hair from his brow and cupped his cheek against her palm. Rising up on her tiptoes, she pressed her lips to his.
Fire! Lightning! Minerva’s tit! Had a kiss ever affected her like that? While the kiss turned her insides to porridge and made it impossible to draw breath, it seemed to have the opposite effect on him. He calmed, but only slightly. When she pulled away, he stared at her with a tormented expression. Not the reaction she hoped for.
Why was he so worried? What was this doom he spoke of? “Did you eat?” She moved to inspect the tray of food she had brought in earlier.
It remained untouched.
She picked up the tray with one hand and took his in the other. “Come. You’ll feel better after you’ve eaten and had a bath.”
Marcus reached for the coverlet, but she pulled him away with a grin. “You will not need that. The garden room is just outside my door.”
Despite her reassurance, he hesitated, peering out into the garden. His jaw dropped at the sight of the larger than life marble statue of the goddess. His gaze scanned the perimeter. She tried to see the garden as though for the first time.
Bees zigzagged from one blossom to another. Every possible shade of green was represented in the abundance of plants growing there. She inhaled the scent of flowers. A bench sat at one end, surrounded by lush foliage.
Seeing no one, Marcus reluctantly let her lead him outside and into the adjacent room that took up this corner of their house. Steam rose from the pool of water, creating a swirling mist inside the garden room. Her hair curled about her face like snakes on Medusa’s head. Luticia had strewn herbs across the surface of the water. The scent of sage and fennel permeated the thick air.
She led Marcus across the mosaic floor to the steps leading down into the pool and set the food tray on the edge. Despite his anxiety, he lowered himself to the bench built around the walls and looked up at her. Gentle waves rose to his chest, lapping softly against the muscles there, as he disturbed the pool.
She licked her lips, watching sun rays from the skylight overhead hit the water and make waves of light that rippled over his tanned skin. He looked better than she thought he would. And vulnerable in a way that tugged at her heart.
Pulling in her stomach and thus insuring her breasts rose and fell as she breathed, she loosened the belt at her waist and slipped her tunic over her shoulders.
Marcus rewarded her with a sharp gasp as the snow white garment slid down her body and pooled at her feet. She stood still, savoring the power she felt as he admired her. At her advancing age, she had to work harder to maintain her tight body. But the look on Marcus’ face made all her efforts worthwhile.
She watched his face as she walked to the steps and descended into the steaming pool. Before the water even covered the tops of her thighs, her auburn curls began to swirl around on the surface. She had never cut it. She loved the luxurious feel of it down her back. And what man could resist the seductive power of a lustrous mane.
By the time she stepped onto the floor of the pool, the water reached her waist. She walked toward him, her movements as languid as the ripples on the surface of the water. He barely seemed to breathe as she drew closer. Resting her knees on the bench on either side of his thighs, she straddled him. He encircled her waist with rough, calloused hands, the hands of a man who worked hard, a strong man.
She closed her eyes, draped her arms over his broad shoulders and allowed a quiet moan to escape her lips as she leaned toward him. She had always loved a strong man, regardless of Mother’s philosophy.
He accepted her kiss, sliding his hands up her back, twisting his fingers in her hair and desperately crushing her lips to his. The instant their lips met, she ignited; burning with hunger she prayed would not go unsatisfied. Shocked at the raw heat lancing through her body, she drew back. Her eyes searched his. He felt it, too. She recognized desire smoldering there. It made the fire within her burn even stronger.
But something else lurked behind those golden eyes. Not fear, exactly. It reminded her of a fallen gladiator, awaiting the crowd’s decision, his fate the whim of the spectators surrounding him. Life or death. The decision no longer his.
Marcus pulled her lips back to his, kissed her as though she alone held his fate.
Her decision came without question.
BLURB: Marcus Valente, a twenty-first century volcanologist, was collecting data near the crater of the volcano when a tremor knocked him to the ground and sent him rolling down the side. When Aemilia rescues him, he gets his first sight of the city. A glittering, thriving Pompeii and not the two thousand-year-old ruins he expects. Marcus decides he must be in a bizarre dream, one where Mount Vesuvius has yet to erupt. He soon discovers that the most famous volcanic eruption in history is less than twenty-four hours away.
Aemilia Nautius would never have guessed that fleeing for her life could be so exciting. The volcano Vesuvius cannot compare to the inferno about to erupt within her. Especially when the man who comes to her rescue is hotter than the Fire God himself.