Sierran Morgan is a man living on borrowed time but Anna Celeste Allen is the key to keeping him alive.
Thrown into the dungeon of a madman, Commander Sierran Morgan does not expect to survive his encounter. Tortured brutally, he knows he is living on borrowed time. When he is rescued by his men, Sierran will garner his revenge on the dungeon master by taking the man and his innocent daughter hostage. The last thing he counted on was Anna Celeste Allen's willingness to help him heal from her father's vicious abuse.
Anna Celeste had been a virtual prisoner in her own home all her life. She was never to know a home and family of her own though her fevered dreams were filled with daring knights coming to rescue her.
Falling in love with Anna wasn't something Sierran planned but he falls hard for the beautiful young woman. On board his ship, he takes Anna as his bride amd vows to give her all her father had denied her. But when he returns home, he is stunned to learn his family had married him by proxy to his father's mistress so they could gain an inheritance Sierran never wanted.
With one wife he'll fight to keep and another he would rather die than touch, Sierran's life will never be the same.
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February 20, 2007
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Excerpt from The Wyndmaster's Lady by Charlotte Boyett-Compo
As rough as the seas had been during the storm, they were now becalmed and the Austru's sails were hanging limp against the masts. Not a breath of a breeze stirred.
Alone in the captain's cabin, Sierran and his new wife were lying--he under the covers and she outside them--with their fingers entwined as he told of her of his life before joining the Army of the Federation.
"Despite having a family when growing up, you sound as though you were nearly as lonesome as I," Celeste commented.
"It was a tough childhood," he admitted. "I was the youngest and I always felt I had been an afterthought."
"The last child of my parents before my mother could have no more," he explained. "A sort of oops."
She smiled. "An oops," she repeated. "You have such a flare for description, milord."
"Sierran," he corrected.
"Sierran," she stated.
They were quiet for awhile, listening to the activity on deck above them.
"Are you going to do it now?" she asked softly.
Sierran frowned. "Do what, sweeting?"
Her face flamed. "You know." She fanned her free hand. "It."
A moment passed before he realized what she meant. "Oh," he said, his cheeks turning red. "That."
"Aye, that," she whispered and turned so she was looking at him. "Are you?"
"Do you want me to?" he countered. "We could wait until we reach my home."
She tucked her lower lip between her teeth. "Shouldn't we consummate the matter as soon as possible?"
Sierran blinked. "Are you in a rush of some sort?"
Celeste wanted to blurt out that, aye, she was, and that she was nearly jumping out of her skin with wanting him to touch her as she'd seen the maid's lover pleasuring the maid. She wanted to know what it was like to be the object of a man's desire but she thought, perhaps, that would be a bit brazen to tell him so and--more to the point--shameful on her part.
"Well, we are man and wife," she reminded him. "And it is your right."
It was on the tip of his tongue to tell her that he was in no condition to exercise that right but one portion of his anatomy seemed to be having a mind of its own and was hardening at a prodigious rate.
"Just tell me what to do and I will," she was quick to say.
He swallowed hard for suddenly making love to her seemed to be the most important thing on his agenda, never mind the pain lancing through his body with every move he made.
"Well, ah, you have to be..." He winced as his voice broke like an untried youth's. "You should be..."
"Naked?" she suggested with an eagerness that left him staring at her.
"Aye, but..." He stopped for she was already unbuttoning the bodice of her gown. All he could do was watch her while every inch of his flesh tingled and other parts of him throbbed.
Celeste swung her legs off the bed and stepped out of her gown, kicking off her slippers as she neatly folded the gown and laid it aside. Clad only in her chemise, stockings, and garter belt, she turned to look down at him. "Completely naked, milord?" she wanted clarified.
Sierran nodded, unable to utter a sound. His eyes flared when she pushed the chemise over her shoulders and wriggled out of it, her back to him. As his gaze settled on the wispy garter belt and the opaque white stockings--the only things she wore--he had to bite his tongue to keep from groaning.
Her bare back looked as soft as silk and the rounded mounds of her buttocks made his mouth water. When she unhooked each stocking and peeled it down her legs--presenting him with a delectable view of her sweet rump--he drew in a harsh breath.
"Are you naked beneath the covers, milord?" she asked, turning around to face him. One slender arm was arched over her breasts to cover them while her hand was splayed out over the wiry curls at the juncture of her thighs.
"Aye," he said and had he had the ability to do so would have kicked himself for the way his voice sounded like that of an adolescent boy.
"All right, then," she said and reached out for the covers.
Before he could do or say anything, she was climbing into the bed and settling beneath the covers with him, her satiny leg pressed close to his.
"I've never lain naked in the bed before," she said then giggled. "Or anywhere else for that matter." Her eyebrows drew together. "I rather like the way it feels."
Sierran had to snap his mouth shut for he was damned well drooling! Not inexperienced with women, he nevertheless felt bumbling as she turned to her side to face him.
"Am I being shameless, Sierran?" she asked, her lovely face crinkling.
"No," he said then had to repeat the word for he had nearly choked on it. "No, milady, you aren't being shameless. Just..." He shrugged helplessly. "Curious, I suppose."
She put her thumbnail to her lips for a moment. "I don't think my father ever meant for me to get married," she said.
"So I've been told," he said, aching to touch her. He wanted to run his fingers over her pretty face.
"He's going to be so angry," she said.
"Let him," he said and shifted so he could lie facing her. He held his breath for the pain was worse than he expected.
"No," she said and sat up, gently putting her hand to his shoulder to press him down flat again. "That puts too much strain on your wounds."
The sheet slid down to his hips--barely covering the thick hair at his thighs. He was unaware the material had tented up around his erection until he saw her gaze drifting downward.
"May I look?" she asked, color flooding her cheeks.
He couldn't have answered had his very life depended on it. All he did was nod.
Hesitantly, she picked up the edge of the cover between her thumb and index finger and carefully lifted it. He saw her eyes widen. "Oh, my," she said, letting the sheet drop. She slowly swiveled her gaze to his. "Is it supposed to look like that? I mean be stiff and hard looking like that?"
Sierran groaned. "Milady..." he began.
She lifted the sheet again and took a longer look. "And it seems to be leaking something from the tip. Should it be doing that?"
"Milady!" he hissed, snatching the sheet from her. "You shouldn't...you can't...." He felt his face burning.
Celeste frowned. "Well, how am I to know these things if you don't tell me?" she asked. "You are my husband, after all. You should be instructing me, shouldn't you?"