There are sensuous pleasures that can only be tasted in the night . . .
He comes to her in the twilight between sleep and consciousness to fulfill her secret desires. Lyssa Bates has never experienced such ecstasy, brought to her by a man whose deep, soul-penetrating blue eyes hold the promise of tempting intimacies and decadent pleasures. But this stranger, this lover, this immortal seducer is only a dream—a phantom of her nocturnal fantasies—until he appears, inexplicably, at her door in the flesh!
Lyssa aches for the reality of him, but there is grave danger in surrender. Because Captain Aidan Cross is on a mission, and the passion that consumes them both, body and soul, could have dire consequences in a world of dreams . . . and in the waking one as well.
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April 30, 2007
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Excerpt from Pleasures of the Night by Sylvia Day
Lyssa Bates glanced at the cat-shaped clock on the wall with its ticking tail and second-hand whiskers. It was finally nearing five o'clock. Almost time to start the weekend, and she couldn't wait.
Exhausted, she ran her hands through her long hair and yawned. It seemed she never got recharged enough, no matter how long she rested. Her days off passed in a blur of kicked-off sheets and buckets of coffee. Her social life had slowed to a drip as her time spent in bed grew longer and longer. None of the prescription insomnia medications helped. It wasn't that she couldn't sleep. In fact, she couldn't seem to stop sleeping.
She just wasn't getting any rest.
Standing, she held her arms above her head and stretched. Every sinew in her body protested. Flames from scented candles flickered on the tops of her metal filing cabinets, covering the medicinal odors of her clinic with the smell of sugar cookies. But the yummy scent failed to entice her hunger as it was meant to do. She was losing weight and growing weaker. Her doctor was prepared to send her to a sleep clinic to monitor her REM patterns, and she was about to agree. He said her lifelong lack of dream recollection was a mental manifestation of a physical malady, one he just hadn't pinpointed yet. Lyssa was just grateful that he didn't prescribe a straitjacket.
"That was your last patient, so you can go home if you want."
Turning, Lyssa managed a smile for Stacey, her receptionist, who stood in the office doorway.
"You look like shit, Doc. Are you coming down with something?"
"Hell if I know," Lyssa muttered. "I've been feeling under the weather for at least a month now."
She had actually been "sickly" most of her life, which was one of the reasons she had turned to medicine for a career. Now she spent as much time as her energy level would allow in her cheery clinic with its creamy marble floors and soft Victorian decor. Behind Stacey, the narrow wainscoted hallway led to the waiting area decorated with cooing lovebirds in antique cages. It was cozy and warm, a place where Lyssa enjoyed spending time. When she wasn't so damn tired.
Stacey leaned against the doorjamb and wrinkled her nose. Dressed in scrubs with cartoon animals on them, she looked cute and bubbly, which suited her personality. "God, I hate being sick. I hope you feel better soon. Your first patient on Monday is a Lab who just needs boosters. I'll reschedule them, if you want. Give you an extra hour to decide if you feel up to coming in or not."
"I love you," Lyssa said with a grateful smile.
"Nah, you just need someone to take care of you. Like a boyfriend. Man, the way the single guys look at you when they come in here . . ." Stacey whistled. "Half the time I think they bought dogs just to come see you."
"Didn't you just say I looked like shit?"
"Girl talk. You'd look better on your deathbed than most women do on their best day. These guys don't remember their pets' checkups because of the reminder postcards. Trust me."
Lyssa rolled her eyes. "I just gave you a raise. What do you want now?"
"For you to go home. I'll close up with Mike."
"I won't argue with that." She was dead on her feet, and although the clinic was still filled with the soothing cacophony of barking dogs, Mike's whirring grooming tools, and talking birds, everything was gradually winding down for the evening. "Let me put these charts away and I'll--"
"No way. If I let you start doing my job, what'll you need me for?" Stacey strode over, scooped up the files from the mahogany desktop, and moved out to the hallway. "See ya Monday, Doc."