[Ménage and More: Erotic Paranormal Ménage a Trois Romance, M/F/M, ghosts, HEA for M/F]
Did Shelby Prentice luck out or what? She’s house-sitting for a gorgeous engineer, the place is a Victorian palace, and it’s furnished. She can’t wait for Lee Tanner to come up on weekends, even if he is so gorgeous she wants to smack him. How’s a girl supposed to feel around a guy who’s prettier than her? To top it all off, Lee’s polite, funny, generous…and Shelby wishes he could be hers.
Of course, she’s not really alone during the week. Her dreams are vivid, and one dream lover in particular, Raleigh, has a turn-of-the-century manner that could charm the bloomers off a saint.
Things couldn’t be more terrific. Sure, there are a few weird noises. Shelby swears she can sometimes smell flowers in empty rooms. Raleigh seems a little too real, although Shelby has never believed in ghosts. Until now. Technically, is it considered a ménage if one of the guys isn’t alive?
Note: This book is written in one point of view.
A Siren Erotic Romance
He sat there grinning at her like she was a prize he’d won at the county fair.
Shelby saw herself through his eyes and didn’t like the way it made her feel. Sure her blue eyes were pretty and looked good with her black hair. But she always wore it up or tied back in a ponytail. All her adult life, she’d tried too hard to look like a serious professional woman in corporate America. For her, serious teetered on severe. She was tall enough and carried most of her five-six height in her legs, but her face would never grace a fashion magazine.
Lee continued. “The woman who manages the deli in the grocery store in town, she and I practically grew up together. All I said was, ‘Put together a few things for my star tenant.’ She did the rest.”
“Star tenant? I’m your only tenant.”
“Same thing.” Still grinning, Lee swung his legs easily and watched her pour iced tea into two glasses before loading the things from the basket into the fridge. He sat there like it was the most natural thing in the world. Well, for him, it probably was. After all, Lee had grown up in this house.
“Do you mind if we go back to the front hall? I’d like to be there in case the movers have any questions.”
“Of course.” Lee took a sip of his tea, jumped down, and held the door for her.
Double bastard. Gorgeous, charming, and polite. The only thing that would have salvaged her shaky self-esteem would be if he was gay. Or married. No such luck. Lee Tanner was divorced and devotedly hetero, judging from the way she’d caught him subtly checking out her ass once or twice while they were negotiating her tenancy.
“What did you do with your furniture?” he asked after he’d staked out a spot in the entranceway, out of the flow of traffic.
“Donated it back to a thrift shop.” Shelby sipped her tea and shrugged. “It was due to be replaced anyway. Most of it was stuff I picked up on the cheap after graduation. When and if you manage to pry my behind out the door, I’ll have saved up enough money to buy some really nice stuff.”
“On sale, I hope,” Lee said over the rim of his glass and lifted one of those perfect, sable eyebrows.
“Absolutely,” she answered adamantly then grinned when he did. Early on in their negotiations, they’d both realized they liked to squeeze a penny whenever possible. As much as his looks had intimidated her, his sense of economy had compensated for it.
The movers came in with the last of her boxed DVDs and CDs, and her books. Lots and lots of books. She passed out bottled water. One of the movers handed her a clipboard. She read the itemized charges, double-checked the math in her head, confirmed the hours charged by checking her watch, and signed the credit card slip.
After they left, Lee followed her into the room to the right of the main entrance. It would be her office. She put the moving receipt on the large, elegant, mahogany desk and ran her fingers over the detailed carving. “Tell me again why you’d lease out this place and live in the gardener’s cottage?”
Flashing her a quirky grin, Lee settled back on one of the room’s two oversized and opulent leather sofas. “Over the past couple of years, my engineering firm has picked up more international contracts. You remember I told you we specialize in underwater construction?” When she nodded, he continued. “My dad’s gone into semi-retirement. He likes the energy of Detroit rather than living out here in the boonies. After Michelle left me, this place sat empty most weeks.”
When he mentioned his ex-wife, Lee’s expression darkened. He took a long drink of his iced tea, and Shelby wondered if he was using it as a screen to gather himself. After a moment, he continued. “I remember telling you there were some break-ins. Some vandalism. Minor stuff but with increasing regularity. I put in a security system, but it didn’t help. The response time out here is about forty-five minutes. When crooks break in, they just check their watch and leave before the patrol company arrives. One of the local sheriffs suggested I get a dog.”
“But with you in the city all week, who’d take care of it?”
“My question exactly.”
“So you settled for the next best thing.”
There it was again…that quirky, adorable smile of his. She wanted to smack him in the mouth for being so obscenely cute.
“I settled for nothing.” Lee corrected her with gentle confidence. “I reached a deal with a smart, together woman who’d live here full time, suck it up when the winds get to howling down Lake Huron during the winter, take on some light maintenance, even run a business out of the house so there’d be someone here all the time. And be willing to park her car out front so burglars would realize somebody’s home.” He finished off the contents of his glass. “I still get to come up on weekends, enjoy the quiet, and go out on the lake whenever I want. Pretty smart of me if I do say so myself.”
“Pretty smart,” she parroted with a wry grin. “So why the escalation in break-ins?”
“Kids probably. Word gets around if a place is vacant, especially someplace isolated on the lake. Gives them land and water access,” he added. “That and the rumor.”
“Yes. The place is haunted.”
That night, Shelby woke when she felt a man slip into bed beside her. “Lee?” she asked, confused, worried, and interested all at the same time.
“No, darling.” He caressed her arm, trailed his lips and silky moustache over her cheek. “It’s Raleigh. I’m crushed you’ve forgotten so soon.”
Like before, he kissed her shoulder, then her breast.
“Hmm. I love your breasts. Love their size,” he murmured. “More than a mouthful. Like ripe fruit hanging from your chest.”
He propped his head up on his hand and looked down at her with unmistakable fondness. She should have known. Despite sharing Lee’s coloring and chin, Raleigh wasn’t as flat-out gorgeous. He also smelled different, like sandalwood and oak with a hint of the most delicious cigar smoke. Shelby touched her dream lover’s cheek, caressed the line of his moustache. Like the others, this dream promised to be a good one. She hoped she remembered it come morning.
“How’d you get past Tazer?” she asked abruptly. From the corner where his bed sat, she could hear the dog snoring, hear one of his legs rhythmically rapping the wall like he was chasing rabbits in his sleep.
“Dogs don’t pay much attention to me. Cats on the other hand are annoying as hell. Promise me you won’t get a cat.”
“What’ll you do if I say yes?”
Great, I’m flirting with a dead dream guy. Is my love life pathetic or what?
Raleigh chuckled. It was quiet, deep, and rife with sensual undertones. “Hmm.” His warm breath tickled her skin. “I’ll pleasure you. Tease you.” Lips circled her nipple without actually touching it. His tongue traced the curve of her breast. Strong fingers squeezed her ass then grazed her labia before withdrawing. “Make you beg and scream.”
“Okay. No cats,” she agreed without hesitation. “I promise.”
Wrapping his hand around her thigh, he lifted it until it straddled his. Reaching behind her, his fingers caressed her pussy.
“I love your cunny.”
“Delicious, if I remember correctly.”
She trembled with anticipation when he put his fingers in his mouth, sucked her juice off their tips, then began caressing her again.
“Like I said, delicious.” There was just enough light for her to see him wink at her. “And this new fashion of removing all the hair. You’re so…naked.” The last word came out as a sensual growl.
“All the better to feel your moustache with.”
His soft chuckle echoed hers.
Without preamble, like last time, Raleigh kissed a path down her body. He held her breasts like they were precious, tormented her by brushing his moustache against her skin, then drew her nipple into his mouth. He laved her tenderly then began suckling. It was a warm, familiar, and comfortable nursing. Quiet sounds of contentment accompanied the brush of his tongue, the gentle, rhythmic pressure, the sting of his teeth.
Again and again he switched breasts, suckling one and kneading the other. When her nipples were plump and on the verge of hurting, she began pushing on his shoulders, urging him to keep moving.
“Impatient woman. Although I’ve always liked women who don’t lie there like limp dolls while I roger them.”
Roger? This northern air is so doing a number on my head.
“But never let it be said I was unwilling to give a woman what she wanted.” The moonlight lit up his smile before he dipped his head, kissed her breasts once more, then mouthed a path down her abdomen.
She sighed when his tongue circled her navel. She shivered when he sucked the surrounding skin into his mouth and bit delicately. Again, without being asked, she opened her legs in a not-so-subtle invitation.
“Ah. Now we get to it.” He kissed her hip, her inner thigh, skimmed his teeth over the skin above her knee. “That most feminine of charms. A jewel fit for a king.” Looking up at her in the dim light, he ran a single finger over her slit, paused when he touched her clit and pressed.
“Sweet…fuck,” Shelby gasped as her back came off the mattress. The man was good. So, so good.
“Tut, tut, my dear.” When he pulled his hand away, she glared at him. “Such foul language coming from such a sweet mouth. Whatever would your mother say?”
She concentrated, trying to force the dream back on track. It didn’t work.
“I insist my lovers conduct themselves like ladies at all times.” That sweet, sensuous voice had hardened and gone cold. She gasped when he grabbed her hips, rolled her with a strength that startled her, and hoisted her ass into the air. Looking over her shoulder, she saw his hand raised over her ass.
He wouldn’t dare. Still, a thrill of anticipation ran through her. Modern men weren’t this high-handed with women…no pun intended. Obviously her psyche wanted to set aside her gender’s hard-won liberation and spend some time as this guy’s plaything.
“Hey,” she blurted out when he slapped her butt, hard.
“No woman in my bed will comport herself like a common guttersnipe.” His hand came down again, striking one cheek then the other.
Tazer snorted and scrambled to his feet. His nails skittered across the hardwood floor as he raced to the bed. He stood there, head tipped to one side, looking at her with open confusion before turning away and ambling back to his own bed.
Snapping her teeth together kept her from crying out. Heat flared in her ass, simmered, and began to sink in. The spanking, she realized, wasn’t brutal. Perversely, her body began processing the pain as pleasure. Shelby leaned her chest into the bed, arched her back, and lifted her ass into each strike.
“You are something special, my dear. Very special indeed.”