A not-so-proper lady on a quest for freedom sneaks aboard the ship of an infamous privateer determined to save his brother--and resist love. Who will win this clash of wills?
A Runaway Heiress
When bold, beautiful Lady Christina Delafield discovered her overbearing grandfather planned to tame her at a Swiss finishing school, Christina stowed away on the first ship leaving London harbor, determined to make her own way in life. But the mysterious captain of the Dragon's Lair was a seductive reason to relinquish her independence-and embrace desire.
A Gentleman Pirate
Drexell Cain had lived for four years as the merciless Black Dragon, the scourge of the seas. Bent on rescuing his brother from the British Navy, Drex would do anything to return him to his wife and son-even kidnap the Lord Admiral's granddaughter for ransom. A lovely blonde stowaway was an unexpected complication, until he discovered her real identity-and her passionate claim on his heart.
This book is a re-release.
Warning, this title contains the following: explicit sex, graphic language.
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May 07, 2007
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Excerpt from The Lady and the Dragon by Shelley Bradley
"Get in the house." He didn't raise his voice. Then again, he didn't need to in order to convey his anger.
Follow him like a servant? No, a slave. A whore. He'd bought her, after all. But by God, he was a fool if he thought he owned her.
Retrieving another of Grandfather's more scandalous sayings from her memory, she yelled, "Bugger off!"
She whirled about and darted for the beach, anger enabling her to make ground-eating progress.
Behind her, the captain followed.
Faster she ran, sprinting down the narrow path to the deserted sandy surface below. The scent of salt in the breeze barely pierced the haze of her anger.
With a curse, the captain grabbed her wrist and turned her around to face him.
She collided with the solid breadth of his chest.
"You're not going anywhere," he snarled.
"You do not own me!" She tried to tug her hand away.
His nasty grin sent shivers down her spine. "Oh, I do. And I plan to prove it."
Christina tried to ignore the zing his nearness shot through her body, but his familiar scent made her senses blossom with awareness.
No! She wanted to stay angry with him. He was insulting, infuriating and--
Very good with his mouth, she realized as the Black Dragon bent his head to her neck. She felt his lips caress her skin in a velvet sweep. His teeth grazed her earlobe. Christina shivered as sensations rioted down her spine.
"What are you doing?
"Not another word," he whispered against the shell of her ear. Goose pimples broke out across her arms at the vibration of his deep voice within her. "Kiss me."
With that, he thrust his hands into her wind-tangled hair and claimed her mouth.
Christina tore her lips away and scanned the beach for someone, anyone who could help her. Not because she was afraid he would hurt her. Because, despite how much he infuriated her at times, the captain roused dangerous yearnings inside her.
Only the surf and its gentle crash against the distant rocks surrounded her.
"Looking for help?" he mocked. "You won't find it here." He lowered his mouth gently, ever so slowly, daring her to resist, before he laid a blistering kiss on her lips. "This beach belongs with the house." He nodded to the white structure on the hill above. "Both very private."
"Hancock," she reminded him, breath shallow.
She knew she should find the strength to twist away--but she couldn't. Somehow, whenever the man touched her, common sense melted away and left only an ache, an odd need, for his touch.
He laughed against her mouth, his tones low. "He's no doubt had the presence of mind to occupy himself elsewhere."
The Black Dragon leaned forward, pulled her closer. Christina felt her will to resist ebbing away. He cinched her surrender with a drugging kiss. She tried to resist, to wield her anger to ward off desire's rush. But they both knew she wanted this.
At once, his kiss chastised and absolved her, persuaded, worshiped, and demanded more. Her anger receded into the haze of memory under the insistent temptation of his mouth. She found herself straining toward him, eager for his touch. He burned fire against her lips, singeing her inside and out. Every muscle in his body grew taut, affirmed his want, from the clench of his arms about her waist, to the heavy rasp of his breathing. And the unmistakable erection pressing into her belly.
Need shook her. She clung to him, shocked at the ache he evoked--low and between her legs. The want spiraled her into sighs and husky murmurs of urging between the sensual assaults on her mouth.
He drew his lips over hers again in a possessive kiss. Intimate. Explicit. No longer gentle or cautious or patient. He took, commanded that she give. For once in her life, Christina obeyed.
She opened for him. His unrelenting invasion robbed her of breath, of the ability to think. Clinging to him, she melted as his tongue made a full sweep through her mouth, his arms crushing against every inch of his work-hardened body, pressing his erection against her again.
Before she caught her breath, his lips descended in a blaze to the sensitive hollow of her neck. He breathed against her damp skin, sending shivers of pleasure racing across her skin. She answered with a ragged exhalation, clutching at his arms, his neck.
As he spread kisses down her shoulders, over the swells of her breasts, the fire within erupted to an inferno. Her fingers brushed the silk of his mask, then tangled into the soft length of his hair. The scents of salt, earth and man seduced her.
He reached for her breast, his fingers lifting her flesh from the snug confines of her dress. An instant later, he fit his mouth over the aching tip, sucking, licking, then giving her a shocking nip with his teeth. An arrow of need flashed straight down, converging between her thighs. She gasped and arched into him. If the end of the world felt this good, she'd follow him to its fiery finish.
"God, you taste so sweet," he rasped.
His tongue circled and teased her rigid nipple before he shoved the dress further down, then devoured the tip of her other breast. Her breathing grew fast and harsh. She threaded her fingers into his hair and drew him closer to her.
"Yes... Touch me," she whispered before she could stop the words.
He inhaled quickly, the demand in his touch conveying his desire. His gaze raked her, lingering on her breasts, now bared to the moonlight.
Christina lifted her shaking fingers to the buttons of his shirt. One button slid free from its confines, followed by another. Finally, a third. She pulled the garment from his breeches and reached for its hem.
He jerked his shirt from her grasp. "God, this is insane. But I want you."
His whisper played like a confession. He closed his eyes. Her heart leapt as she reached out and caressed the rippling slab of his chest.
At her touch, he sucked in a breath. "I can't stop wanting you."
Before she could respond, the captain yanked his shirt over his head and tossed it into the sand below.