In Capturing Our Lady's Heart, Bernardo Aznar and Lann Quinlain want Bliss Meades for their wife. Bliss wants to open a lingerie shop and doesn't need any interference from Bern and Lann. When Lann offers financial help, she sees it as controlling. Capturing her heart won’t be easy. Still, her mind might reject them, but her body doesn’t agree.
In Seducing Our Lady's Heart, Sunn Handley doesn’t believe Chandler Larsson and Todd Carrigan are serious about loving her. She’d dated them before, and they ran off to Houston. They know they have to regain her trust before she’ll say yes. When one of Sunn’s fathers gets sick, Chandler and Todd see an opportunity to be supportive and helpful.
In The Viscount's Vendetta, Damon Royston stopped at the edge of a crowd. A lady was berating a chimney worker. His friend, Rook, tells him she is Caroline, the only daughter of Lord Halford. Damon’s stomach clenched at Rook’s words. His mystery lady is the daughter of his sworn enemy, the man he holds responsible for his father’s death.
CAPTURING OUR LADY'S HEART
Alan turned into the long drive at Aznar’s ranch. As they got closer they saw a large crowd, a mixture of families and cowboys. The smell of barbecue made her stomach growl. She’d skipped breakfast getting the children ready and dealing with her resistant brother.
“In this crowd of men maybe you can find a husband,” Alan sneered. “Although I doubt if anyone would want the bitch you’ve become.”
The sound of the slap shocked both her and Alan. She hadn’t been aware of her hand moving so quickly to hit the side of his face. They stared at each.
“Auntie Bliss, you hit Daddy. You have to go to time out,” Clara said from the backseat.
“You’re right, honey. I’m going to leave you three with your daddy, and I’m going to take time out.” She glanced at her brother. “You have thirty days.” She got out of the truck and didn’t look back.
Tears filled her eyes and she stumbled once getting across the yard. She headed toward the side of the barn. She walked around to the back and stepped into the cool, dimness. A few horses neighed and moved around. Finally, she let the tears flow.
* * * *
“Who is that?” Lann nodded toward the tall woman with midnight-black hair who stalked straight from the truck she’d ridden in to the side of the barn and disappeared.
“Bliss Meades. Her stupid brother has probably been giving her a hard time again. I found her crying once before. He’s divorced and has her taking care of his kids and being a general flunky. I’d like to sock him, but it’d upset and embarrass her.”
“I think I’ll go check on her.” Lann strolled toward the barn. She wasn’t standing on the side. He walked to the back door and listened. He heard her soft crying, and his fist clenched. He agreed with Bern. He’d like to punch the brother, too.
He didn’t see her at first in the dim light. But then he saw a movement by the hay. She was lying back on a pile of fresh hay with her eyes closed and a handkerchief in her hand. He moved carefully so as not to startle her.
When he got closer, he saw her more clearly. She was dressed in a long-sleeve shirt, a pinafore-type dress, and old boots. Her hair had been pulled back in a bun. Her outfit looked strange on a young woman. She must have sensed him. She opened her eyes.
She jumped backward further into the hay. “Who are you?”
“Lann Quinlain. I’m part of the group just moving here. I saw you headed this way and thought you looked upset.”
“I’m fine,” she said and started to stand.
Lann put out his hand. She hesitated, but then she reached out and he pulled her upright. When their hands connected, Lann felt a jolt. She did, too. Her eyes opened wide, and she snatched her hand back as soon as she was on her feet.
“Thank you. I have to get back. The children will be looking for me.”
“Bern said you take care of your brother’s children.”
Her chin went up in reaction to his remark. “I suppose, like the other nosy people around here, you wonder why I haven’t married and had my own.” She stepped closer and stood on her tiptoes to face him. “I don’t want children. I want a career. If I wanted a husband, I’d get one. But after living with my brother for two years I’m certain marriage isn’t for me.”
“Well, now there are benefits in a marriage that you don’t have helping your brother.” He couldn’t hold back a smile. He loved her outspokenness. She was putting him in his place.
“I suppose you mean sex. I believe it’s highly overrated.”
Lann put his hand over his mouth but he couldn’t hold in the laughter. “Oh, baby, you just haven’t been with the right man.”
* * * *
“And I suppose you think you’re the best?” Oh, my goodness, what was wrong with her? She’d never been so outspoken with anyone, much less a man.
“I’d be glad to volunteer my services.” Lann’s eyes sparkled with amusement. Even in the dim light she could see the bright-green color of them.
“Thank you, but I have no need of them.” Her face burned with embarrassment. She hurried to the door, but heard his words as she went out.
“Darlin’, I think you need them badly.”
Lann carried her to the end of the hall and into the master bedroom. After the movers left and while she cooked, he must have made the bed. He sat her on the side and began to unbutton her blouse.
“I haven’t said I agreed.”
Lann stepped back by Bern. Bern knelt at her knees.
“Honey, are you going to keep me waiting longer? It’s been six years.”
She ran her fingers around his face and across his lips. He nipped at her thumb, and her pussy clenched.
“I do want you, both. I’m a bit scared, though, at the thought of opening myself up to you.”
“We’ll take it slow and easy. If you want us to stop, say the word.”
Bliss nodded her head. She leaned forward and kissed Bern’s mouth. Her hand moved down his neck to his shirt. Bliss unfastened the first few buttons.
Bern pulled her up in his strong arms and kissed her. She felt the whole length of his body against hers. His cock was aroused and hard. It pushed against her abdomen. Bern moved his leg between hers and she rubbed her mound against him, sending spikes of desire racing along her nerves.
When he pushed his leg harder on that sensitive spot, Bliss moaned in pleasure. She arched against his hard muscles, and moisture flowed out of her pussy.
Lann came behind her and pulled her hair to the side. His lips nuzzled her neck, and his hands went around her to caress her breasts. He rubbed her nipples with the flat of his hand.
Her craving need for them to touch her and be inside her became a voracious passion. They’d aroused a fire of need in her center.
Lann undid the rest of her shirt and removed it and her bra from where he’d pushed it up. Bliss was so consumed with her feelings, she hardly noticed when Bern undid her slacks and pulled them and her panties down.
“Step out of your pants, darlin’.” Lann whispered in her ear and then bit her earlobe.
Bern lifted her one foot at a time, and then she was naked.
He immediately went back to kissing her and his hand moved down between her lower lips to rub her clit.
When he did, she wanted to throw her legs around his waist and have his hard cock plunge inside of her. She opened her legs wider to make it easier for him to touch her.
“Wait just a second, darlin’.” Bern reached in his pocket and removed a condom packet. Then he quickly undressed and sheathed his cock.
Lann lifted her onto the bed before stepping aside to take his clothes off. Bern got on the bed and spread her legs.
His fingers separated her folds, and he tasted her juices from her clit to the opening of her pussy. “The sweetest taste ever.”
Every nerve ending in her body stirred and tingled. Her skin felt hypersensitive to his touch. Lann came back to the bed and lay beside her. He leaned across, took one nipple in his mouth, and sucked. The aching coil in her center exploded with hot, impassioned delight. She inhaled deeply and their combined earthy scents of arousal and all male sent her hunger through the stratosphere.
“Take me, please.”
“Soon, honey.” Bern licked her lower lips and inside the entrance to her pussy. Her pussy pulsed and ached. She arched her back and pushed herself closer against his talented mouth.
Lann turned her head and kissed her deeply. His tongue went in and out, mimicking what she wanted Bern to do below. He continued to caress her breast and pinch her nipple.
Bliss began to shake. “I’m going to explode.” She bit the edge of Lann’s lower lip just before he pulled back. Then Bern positioned himself at her opening. He moved in gradually, stretching her pussy walls. She panted as she soared up and out. Her body shook hard. Bern plunged all the way to her womb. Then he went in and out, fast and hard. She screamed as intense pleasure swallowed her up.
SEDUCING OUR LADY'S HEART
Bern and Lann came right away when Sunn explained what had happened. She introduced Lann to her dad. He already knew Bern.
“I’m not sure how you can help us. You have your own ranches to take care of, but Sunn insisted you be called.”
“Neighbors help each other, Andy. We have a lot of men and can certainly spare a few to guard your property. You also need to contact the sheriff,” Bern said.
“I did, and I explained you and Lann were coming over. He should be here in a few minutes.”
“Good. We’ll make a plan and get these guys the next time,” Bern reassured them.
“You think they’ll try again?” Sunn’s father asked.
“They must believe you have valuable minerals underneath this ranch. They’ve hired someone to scare you into selling,” Lann said.
“I’ll solve that problem. Todd Carrigan can buy my property. If he’ll still want it under these conditions.”
“We’ll see what the sheriff says. I see his car coming up the drive.” Her dad went to the door and waited for Sheriff Devon. Once he was inside they explained to him what had happened. Lann and Bern suggested Sunn and her father go to her apartment and stay while their men watched the ranch.
“I’m not leaving home,” her dad said emphatically. “I can help. I have a rifle and know how to use it.”
“If Dad stays, so will I.”
Sheriff Bud Devon held up his hand. “I don’t want any vigilante justice. I agree I don’t have enough deputies to guard the whole ranch, but I want your assurance that your men are well trained and not trigger-happy.”
“They are,” Bern said. “And Lann’s men have been well trained, too.”
“I like you, Bern, and you’ve been around a while so I’ll take your word. But as soon as things start to happen, I want a phone call.”
“We agree,” Bern said, and Lann nodded his head. “But I’d still rather you two leave the ranch.”
“It’s not going to happen. I won’t leave, and I imagine you’d have to carry Sunn off screaming.” He grinned and hugged his daughter. “She’s promised not to be a hero like she was today.”
“How many horses do you have?” Lann asked.
“We have eight.”
“We’ll send four men to patrol on horseback, two of mine and two of Bern’s.”
One of the firemen knocked on the screen door. Sunn’s dad motioned for him to enter.
“We’ve cleaned up the barn and entranceway. I’m taking the gasoline can to have it checked for fingerprints.” He glanced at Sunn. “What you did was very dangerous.”
“I know. Dad’s already lectured me.”
“In that case, I won’t say any more. Call us if you have any other problems.” He strode across the porch and soon the truck was headed down the drive.
“We have a good plan,” the sheriff said. “Let’s hope it works and we get these guys.”
“We’ll call our men and have them drive over before we leave.” Bern shook his hand.
“I’m sure the men trying to run us off won’t come back today.”
“Don’t count on it, Andy. We’ll sit on the porch and wait for our guys.” Bern and Lann followed the sheriff out and stood by his cruiser talking.
After the sheriff left, Sunn saw Bern and Lann making phone calls. “I guess they’re telling their men to come here. I feel much safer with them watching out for us. There’s a truck coming down the drive.” At first she didn’t recognize the dark-blue vehicle, but then she did. Todd Carrigan parked in front of the porch and got out.
He stopped and spoke with Bern and Lann. Darn, they’re telling him our business.
Todd took the stairs two at a time. He knocked on the door and her father went to welcome him.
“I just heard about your trouble and how Sunn saved the barn and horses.” He frowned at her. “You could have died.”
“Will everyone get off my case? It was a quick decision that I don’t regret, and you are not my father. He’s lectured me.”
“Sir, I think you need to get out of here for a few days. Come and stay at my place. I’ve recently had the house remodeled. There’s plenty of room for company. You’d still be close to your ranch.”
“That’s a kind offer. I’ll agree since I can’t get Sunn out of here unless I go along. I’ll be close to my ranch and can check on the house each day.”
“Dad, we’ll be fine here. There’s no need for us to put Mr. Carrigan out.”
“It’s no problem for me. I just arrived from Houston and heard about your incident. I came right over to see what you need.”
Sunn started to respond, but saw her father watching her closely. If she protested too much she’d arouse his interest. “I guess we can go over for a few days.” When her father looked away, she frowned at Todd. He grinned back at her.
“My golden goddess.”
Laughing, Sunn undid Chandler’s shirt and pushed it off. His broad, tanned chest had dark hair across it and a line of hair disappeared under his waistband. She unfastened his thin, black belt and unbuttoned his pants. He took over and kicked his shoes off before removing his pants and underwear. Then he held out the condom to Sunn.
His tall, lean body made her mouth water. He had a wide chest, a tight six-pack, and long, muscular legs. She took the condom from him. When she started to roll it on his cock, she heard the hitch in his breath. She glanced at his face and his blue eyes flashed with an inner fire.
As soon as she’d finished, he helped her remove the rest of her clothes. “Now I get to look at you. Compared to me, honey, you’re tiny.” He cupped her face and kissed her gently. Gradually the kiss deepened and his tongue slipped inside to tangle with hers. He pulled her body tight against his. His hard cock jerked when it came in contact with her stomach.
“He’s hungry for you,” Chandler whispered in her ear.
Sunn put her arms around his neck and nibbled at his earlobe. “I want to feel him deep inside me.”
“Not before we have some fun.” He lifted her and threw her to the middle of the bed, and then he followed her down. His body lay over hers. “I have you at my mercy.”
She bucked suddenly and threw herself against him. Chandler rolled and she was on top. He grinned. “I like this, too.” Being stronger he soon had regained his position.
He moved down and kissed her peaked nipples, and then he ran his tongue around each one. His hands cupped her breasts. “They’re soft, tasty, and you smell delicious.”
Chandler kissed her midriff, her abdomen, and his nose brushed across her mound before he parted her lower lips. He caressed her clit with his tongue. Her body arched closer to him. Her pussy throbbed with hunger and her juices flowed out.
“You taste wonderful and smell like raspberry.” Without stopping, he continued his exploration of her body. His lips kissed the inside of each thigh and a sensitive spot behind her knee. He rubbed his hands over her lower legs and feet.
Her heart fluttered in her chest as he stoked the growing fire in her core. She squirmed under his intent gaze.
“I can’t get enough of you.” He worked his way back to her lower lips, and while his tongue worked magic against her clit and along her labia, his fingers rubbed across her nipples.
A zing of pleasurable delight went up her spine. Her legs parted further when all her muscles lost the tension she’d been carrying all day. She wanted to touch him. She reached out and ran her fingers through his thick, black hair.
Chandler raised his head and his eyes smoldered with satisfaction. Her breath quickened when he put his cock at her pussy opening. He rose over her like a warrior of old taking control of his conquest. His dark-blue eyes shimmered in the light from the bedside lamp.
“I want you and need you.” His voice sounded husky to her ears.
Then he thrust into her pussy, stretching the walls to their fullest. Her pussy pulsed against his throbbing cock. A salacious shiver sparked a need deep inside her. She took him in further, and her pussy walls tightened around his dick.
“Ah, baby, that sent a shot of euphoria straight to my brain.”
Chandler took hold of her hips and pulled them up. He plunged in and out of her pussy until she made a keening sound. He thrust once more against her womb and held tight as her pussy rippled around him. She screamed his name and after a few more thrusts his cock made spasmodic movements taking her up on a wave of bliss and over.
He kissed her mouth before rolling to the side. Chandler had hardly caught his breath when the phone rang. “Good, just leave it at my front door. I’ll leave the money out.”
Sunn watched as he grabbed his pants, took out money and raced off. She got up and walked to a closed door that she hoped was a bathroom. It was. A huge shower took up one end, and then there was the Jacuzzi-type tub, and two sinks, with the toilet in a small room off the rest of the bath. The colors were a deep maroon and white.
“I see you found the bathroom.” Chandler walked behind her and circled his arms around her waist. “I’d love to play in the shower, but the pizza has arrived. I’ll grab my robe out of the closet for you.”
“I have to take a shower and dress. If we don’t go to the hospital soon, I’ll miss seeing my mom and dads.”
He glanced at his watch. “I’m afraid you’re right. We’ll leave the shower play for later. I’ll get our dinner on plates and pour our tea while you shower. Then I’ll get a quick one while you clean up the kitchen.”
She grinned. “You mean throw away our pizza box?”
“That and our paper plates and cups.”
He left and she showered quickly and redressed. She glanced at the bed on her way out. The feelings he and Todd brought out in her when they made love were different, more intense than any she’d felt before. In spite of trying to go slow, her heart was jumping right in and opening itself to possible hurt. But it was like a roller coaster. Once it started, you had to ride it to the end.
THE VISCOUNT'S VENDETTA
As Caroline Winters stepped out of the bonnet shop, the altercation across the street caught her attention. A tall, brawny man gripped a chimney boy’s thin arm. His harsh voice rose above the noise of the passing traffic and hawkers selling their wares on the street corner.
Sara, Caroline’s friend, reached out to her. “Don’t, Caroline. The carriage is this way.” She motioned toward their left.
Joan, her other closest friend, moved to her side. But Caroline couldn’t look away from the fracas occurring in front of her. She stepped onto Bond Street, ignoring a wagon that almost hit her and the ugly words the driver shouted. She dodged carriages and other wagons to hurry across. Dust swirled around, coating her hair and clothes. She blinked rapidly to clear her vision from particles of dirt blowing in her eyes.
All she saw was a child’s face darkened with soot. Tears left white lines down his gaunt cheeks. When she stepped onto the walkway, she said, “Release him!”
Is the man going to ignore me? Then, he turned.
His black eyes glared at her as he moved forward dragging the boy along. His put his face close to hers and sneered. “Ah, if it ain’t the same lady back again. I suppose you want this one, too.” He nodded at the child.
His bad breath made Caroline step back. He laughed and deliberately closed the space between them.
“If I keep givin’ you my chimney boys, I won’t have any to do the job. This is the fifth one you’ve tried to take from me.”
She tipped her head and stared at him. “Hardly take from you,” Caroline answered in her most refined tone. “You have been well paid.”
Uneasiness crept over her as she noted a crowd began to form. With a quick glance, she realized some of the people watching were members of society. Her parents would be appalled if they heard of her behavior.
The man yelled. She forgot the crowd and turned back just as the child yanked his arm free. He ran to Caroline, grabbing her hand tightly.
She leaned down to comfort him. A low murmur came from the assembled group.
“Let the lady take him home. He won’t be much good to you. He can’t last long in those chimneys as small as he is,” a workman shouted.
“Stay out of my business!” The chimney boy’s boss grabbed the child’s arm and pulled him to his side.
“You’ll need more money this time, my lady.” His face had reddened with anger. He pulled the boy’s arm up and the youngster cried out. The man grinned sardonically at her.
Inside Caroline something snapped. She struck the man with her parasol. She and the crowd gasped as the angry sweeper turned on her.
Suddenly, a tall, well-dressed man stepped between Caroline and the burly, crude man moving to attack her.
The gentleman held up his hand. “Stop right where you are.”
“Move out of my way. This is my business,” the sweeper snarled.
“I’m making it mine,” her rescuer said without raising his voice. “How dare you accost this lady?”
Caroline couldn’t move. The people and activity around her clouded. She mustn’t faint. She never fainted. After taking several deep breaths, the unreal sensation faded. The chimney boy’s boss had moved back from the stranger, although he still glared around him at Caroline.
Her rescuer turned partway and caught Caroline frowning at the man. “You need to join the ladies across the street.” He nodded toward Sara and Joan. “I’m sure they must be your friends. They look quite alarmed.”
He was right. Sara and Joan motioned frantically at her to return. She looked at the gentleman and found herself caught in his dark gaze.
Straightening to her full height of five feet three inches, she shook her head no. “I will pay the man first and take the boy with me before I leave.” She saw displeasure flash in the stranger’s blue eyes. His lips tightened.
“I will deal with the boy and this man.” He spoke in a firm tone and nodded toward where the man stood holding tightly onto the child’s forearm. Caroline silently challenged her rescuer. The air sizzled around them during their silent battle of wills.
Surprised, she realized he wasn’t going to relent and change his mind. The unrest of the crowd and din of noise finally reached her consciousness. Her face flushed with heat. Reluctantly, she turned and walked to the edge of the street. Her friends looked across at her with anxious expressions on their faces. Her maid, Mary, waved.
The small boy, covered in soot, pulled himself loose again and threw himself against her, leaving smudges of black against her cream-colored pelisse. Caroline pulled him protectively against her body.
Her rescuer had put money into the sweeper’s hand. The gentleman frowned at her and the boy. He walked to them and put his hand on the child’s shoulder.
“Come with me,” he commanded. He turned his attention to Caroline and nodded toward the crowd. “You have exposed yourself to enough notoriety. Join your friends, now.” He spoke in a low voice, but it was nonetheless commanding.
“You have no right to tell me what to do.” She directed her frustration and anger toward him, even though she knew she was being ungrateful and unreasonable.
“A well-mannered lady would say thank you.” His eyes glinted with amusement.
The light material caressed her skin. Caroline strolled across the bedroom to stand in front of her mirror. The gown was cut very low in the bodice, and sewn to go across her breast and wrap around her waist.
She took off her robe and slipped the gown over her head. Her nipples were faintly visible through the material. Swaths of silk wrapped her small waist snugly and fell in soft folds down her legs, to brush gently across the tops of her small feet.
Caroline blushed. She had never worn any piece of clothing so daring and so blatantly seductive, not even in the privacy of her own bedroom. She reached for the cashmere shawl to put around her.
“Don’t.” His soft words stilled her hand. He strolled toward her. A light flared in his eyes as he took his time observing her face, her throat and breasts, and all the way to her feet.
Her heart raced and her abdomen ached with a strange hunger, especially when he stopped for a longer look at her breasts.
“I have dreamed of you in this gown, in my room.” His husky words wrapped seductively around Caroline and she trembled.
His large, warm hands rubbed her arms, sending a spark of fire to burn in her core. Then his hands cupped her face. His dark-blue eyes turned as black as an onyx stone while he stared at her. She watched as he bent his head. He kissed her and held her tight. His tongue slid between her lips, giving him entrance into the inner recesses of her mouth. He groaned and his hands cupped her buttocks, bringing her abdomen tight against his long, hard cock. It startled her, and she tried to put distance between them.
“Don’t be frightened, darling,” he whispered in her ear.
His breath and words aroused a feeling of fear and fascination. A chill ran down her back.
She gasped when his lips moved to her neck, and then lowered to kiss and caress her breast. Her nipples peaked and her body automatically tried to get closer.
Her hands instinctively touched his dark-brown, silky hair. Caroline was more aware of her body than ever before. She wrapped her arms around his neck and moved her lips against his earlobe. His cock pulsed against her abdomen.
Damon moved slowly, his lips leaving a trail of fire wherever they touched. When he kissed her again, her tongue slid caressingly against his as he explored the inside of her mouth.
At last, he straightened and looked into her face.
“I want you now, in my bed.” The intent look in his eyes and his voice warmed her whole body. She leaned into him, and he swept her into his arms.
Damon’s long legs quickly covered the adjoining distance between her room and his. He laid her onto his large bed and pulled her silk gown over her head.
Caroline watched mesmerized as Damon flung off his robe. His body was beautiful, tanned, and well muscled. She gasped and moved away from him, seeing how large and strong he was in all his nudity. His cock jutted out and upward.
He smiled and walked over to her small feet. Leaning down, he kissed her toes, her ankles, and up her legs to the most private parts of her body.
Caroline moaned and found herself twisting. Her body hummed with an exquisite hunger. Damon continued to work his way up over her stomach, to her breasts. He took his time kissing each breast and sucked on her nipples. When Caroline was certain she’d explode, he moved all the way up and captured her lips.
His silken, hard shaft rubbed against her abdomen and her legs opened, while her arms pulled him closer and closer. She’d lost all awareness of anything but him and her and the sweet feel of their bodies entwined.
Damon slid down her body and his fingers separated her lower lips. He licked across her clit, and raptures of delight raced up her spine. Her heart pounded from the fear of the unknown, and the thrill of his touch and kiss. He licked her juices to her pussy opening and flicked his tongue inside. Caroline screamed out his name. Her pussy clenched tight and her hips rose off the bed.
“Relax, sweetheart, this may hurt for just a second.”
Before Caroline had time to tense up, he positioned his hard dick at her pussy opening and thrust forward. She cried out briefly, and he held still. Damon kissed her gently on the sides of her face and wiped the few tears away.
When the discomfort eased, Caroline tentatively moved against him, and he began to thrust in and out.
“That’s right, sweetheart. Ah, it feels very good.” Damon moved faster and faster, and Caroline wrapped her legs around him and held on tight.