The Devil's Playthings

The Succubus

Book 2
Boruma Publishing

 Dark currents are flowing through the home of Rachel Wainwright. A successful attorney, she has become the unwitting vessel for a succubus. Now, in order to increase her power and to escape the prison of Rachel's body, Althea is slowly turning the conservative lawyer towards a more sexual lifestyle. While she waits impatiently for her husband to return for the weekend, her eyes roam, wondering what pleasures might be found among the other members of her household. Will it be her sexy maid? Or someone else? No matter who catches her eye, Rachel and her family have become…The Devil's Playthings.

~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~

“So I am wondering,” Rachel said to Maria, “if you might want to work for my family full-time. You would do what you already do, but we would be the only household you work for. You would have to quit your existing job, of course, but I can certainly improve on your salary. Heck, I would probably save money, considering how badly your boss is shafting the both of us. In addition to taking care of the house, you would also be responsible for my husband's workshop, if he chooses to move back here. And sooner or later Sarah is going to move out. She does a lot of the cooking for us now, so we are going to need someone to prepare meals.”

“I can cook!” Maria said eagerly. Her head spun. This was a dream come true! “I love making good food! Although,” she said, her voice faltering slightly, “my meals may be different than what americanos are used to.”

Rachel laughed. “What else?” she continued. “Oh. Right. If you like, you can move in, as well. Rent-free. There is a small apartment over the garage which we've never used. It has its own kitchen and bathroom, and is hooked up to all our utilities, so you can avoid that expense. It's unfurnished, but we'll help you move your things up there if you like. It has its own entrance as well, so you would have complete privacy. You wouldn't have to worry about us barging in when you wanted to be alone.

“However,” she said, “there are a few conditions we must set.”

“Anything!” Maria said eagerly.

“First of all,” she said, “We simply must do something about this uniform. It is very unflattering for a woman with a body as lovely as yours.” She casually reached up and started to unbutton Maria's thick, heavy blouse. Her eyes were wide and avid, the pupils dilated.

In moments her uniform was unbuttoned to the waist. Rachel pushed it off her shoulders, letting the garment fall loose to drape around her middle. Her cheeks burning, she tried to cover her body with her arms, but failed utterly.

“Oh, stop it,” Rachel said gently. “Why do you try to hide your beautiful body? I know women in my office who would kill for one like yours.” She walked around Maria slowly, her hand trailing along the skin of her belly, her back. Her skin was strangely hot as she caressed the length of her spine.

“Lovely,” she said, satisfied, as she came around to her front again. “But this,” she continued, letting her hand graze the plain white cotton of Maria's bra. “It won't do. When you come to work for me, I want something more.” As if it were the most natural thing in the world, she reached behind Maria and unclasped her bra. Her breasts sprang loose, wantonly exposed to her view.

“Oh,” Rachel sighed. “Yes, that is so much better. Can you do this for me, Maria? Can you choose to not hide your beauty, but flaunt it? Show me and my family the blessings which have been bestowed upon you?

“Not that you should walk around topless every day,” she said, with a glint of humor. “I don't want to expose my family to that much temptation. I am trying to reconcile with Josh, after all. I can't have him looking at you when he should be looking at me. Just wear something attractive. Something which will remind us of the beauty to be found in the world.” Her voice deepened. “Something which will make us desire you, as a woman should be desired.”

Desire opened like a pit in Maria's belly. She trembled softly, wondering whether her deepest, most hidden fantasies were about to come true.

“You're beautiful, too,” she said softly. She stood bravely, meeting Rachel's eyes. “I would never try to take your novio away from you. He should be in your bed. But I would like to be there, too.”

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Additional Information

Publisher
Boruma Publishing
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Published on
Jan 2, 101
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Pages
41
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ISBN
9781311835604
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Erotica / General
Fiction / Erotica / Lesbian
Fiction / Fantasy / Paranormal
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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After days of a strange sexual reawakening, Rachel Wainwright finally meets the reason for the wonderful change in her life. Althea Carpenter is a succubus who has been forced to take up residence in her mind. As she explains her history, and that of the succubi, Rachel is filled with sympathy for her plight, and agrees to help her regain her previous form.

Meanwhile, the spell of the succubus is having an effect on other members of Rachel's household. Goaded by urges he finds shameful and perverse, Alex finds love and acceptance in Maria's arms. And Sarah is being drawn to a new man in her life. Will they find happiness together? Or will their forbidden love doom them all? One thing is certain. When you look into the eyes of a succubus, you may see some Dark Reflections.

~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~

Rachel frowned. The fact that Maria and Jeremy and the kids weren't going to turn into her slaves was a relief. As was the fact that even a being as obviously sex-focused as Althea had a moral center, even if that center seemed to be no more than Thou shalt not hurt anyone you don't have to and Thou shalt not bang an unwilling partner.

“That's pretty much all it is,” Althea said cheerfully. “But I don't take stuff that isn't mine, either. Most people are happy to give it to me anyway.” She smiled at Rachel's expression. “Hello? I'm in your head, remember? I know what you're thinking.” Her smile grew dark, deep, and wicked. “And such naughty thoughts you're having, Rachel. Jealous of Maria when I suggest setting her up with Alex? Who are you thinking should be in his bed, if not her?”

She patted her cheek. “Don't worry, I'm not judging you.” Her look drew inward and she rose from her seat on the grass, her body inhumanly graceful. “But we're running out of time. It's almost morning. And holding together this illusion for you is a drain on my power. I need you to do something for me, my handmaiden.”

Rachel sighed and stood. “What is it?”

“My body is missing. I need you to find it.

“Now, Rachel, go with my blessing.” Stooping, she laid a gentle kiss on her brow. Rachel's skin burned at her touch. “And wake up.”

*****

With a start, Rachel opened her eyes. She was lying on her back. The covers had been pulled down to lie in a crumpled heap at the foot of the bed. Morning sunlight poured through the open windows, and the cotton curtains swayed in a soft spring breeze. More importantly, her husband was kissing her. From the warm feeling in her chest and groin, he had been arousing her for some time.

“Well, this is a wonderful way to wake up,” she murmured softly. She smiled down at her long-time lover and best friend. “Looking for someplace to hide your morning wood?” she teased.

Josh raised himself on his arms, moving forward so he could give her another good-morning kiss. “Amazing thing, the male body,” he said, when their lips parted. “No matter how many times you make love to a beautiful woman, it can't wait to do it again.”

She smiled at the compliment, looping her arms around his neck and drawing him down to her. How long had it been since they had spent a lazy morning in bed? Years, perhaps. For the first time in far too long, there were no urgent needs driving her. No cases to prepare for, no witnesses to depose, no briefs to write and file. If she and Josh wished, they could spend all day in bed.

~Ooh, that sounds nice. Yes, let's do that.~ Althea said.

Be quiet, you, Rachel said. Can't you leave me alone for a while?

~Actually, no. I can't. That's kind of the point of this whole exercise, isn't it? And just remember, the more you make love to Joshua, the quicker you will have the mental privacy you desire. Until then, get used to having company.~

She dragged her nails up his back, tickling her husband, watching through hooded lids as his back arched under her touch. God, I've missed this. The feeling of power, even when he's on top of me, seemingly in control.

~Being a woman is wonderful, is it not? At least, when you control your own destiny. This is why my mother spurned Adam and God. She would not allow herself to become subordinate. A tool to be used.~

Tell me, she asked, is this thing with our secretions...catching? If Jeremy makes love to another woman, would she be affected?

~What, are you worried about mankind catching a case of universal horniness, as if it were some sort of awesome venereal disease?~ Althea's voice was teasing. ~Fortunately, no. It would have happened way before now. We are a lusty bunch, although there aren't many of us. You don't have to be worried about being Patient Zero in the great Sex Plague of 2016.~

 The end has come. In the final chapter of our story, Althea, the immortal succubus, knows that the confrontation with the demon-spawn Kincaid is near. To lure him into their trap means putting the entire family in harm's way. And even if she succeeds, will the love they all share survive? Because when all you hold dear is at risk, sometimes you have to pay...Passion's Price.

~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~

“So...you're doing this for me?”

“Oh, no. I'm doing it for me. I'm not worried about your performance tonight.” She laid a hand on his cheek. “I know you'll be brilliant. I saw it the other day at your rehearsal. Someday, Alex, they are going to talk about you like they talk about Booth and Barrymore and Olivier. You're that good. All you need is time. And practice.” As his jaw dropped in astonishment at her praise, she continued. “But I need a couple of things. First, I need your power. The essence of a virile young man.” She closed her eyes, but her body shook in a shiver of desire, and she moved closer until their bodies were all but touching. “If I am right, Kincaid will be the most powerful demon-spawn I have faced in generations. And warding this house is a drain on my resources. I do not dare face him unless I am at the peak of my powers. Your seed will give me that.”

“And second?”

“I'm afraid, Alex. Not for myself,” she said hurriedly, as he opened his mouth in protest. “I've lived a long life. Longer than anyone else on this planet, when you think about it. If I had to, I would change many things. But I would not change how I have spent it. When I look back, I think I have made a difference.

“But I'm afraid of failing. Of failing you and your parents and all the rest. And of failing the Almighty herself. If I don't succeed tonight, if I challenge Kincaid and he defeats me, he will engage in an orgy of destruction the likes of which this town has never seen.”

She took a deep breath, and he was astonished to see tears glimmering in the glorious depths of her green eyes. “Alex, I want you to make me a promise.”

“Anything.”

“If I fail, if I die, and you somehow escape, I want you to call this number.” She handed him a small card. A phone number was printed on the white surface in stark black letters. No other information was to be seen. “I've given it to your parents as well. And to the rest of the family. It will help you reach my sisters, Lucifer and Tera. They will come. And when they do, Hell will pay.”

He nodded quietly and slipped the card into his back pocket.

“Good. That's done.” She sighed gustily. “I haven't been this nervous in years.”

“You have stage fright?”

She waved away his incredulous question. “Not really. Some. Screw it. Yes. I'm frightened. Before, all I had to lose was my own life. Now,” she hugged him tight, her breasts flattening against his chest. “I have a lot more at risk.”

Suddenly he felt a small, hot hand resting on his erect shaft. When he looked down, her eyes were twinkling, all sign of her prior anxiety fled. “Which is why,” she husked sexily, “I need to forget about all that for a while, and concentrate on your beautiful body instead.” With frightening ease, she had him naked from the waist down. “Why don't you put down that silly script, and fill your hands with something else instead?”

 Althea was an immortal succubus, dedicated to a life of sexual pleasure. She lived her life on her own terms, caring little for others. However, one fateful day she was torn out of her own body by a deranged mortal. Forced to take shelter in the nearest woman, how will she regain her power and her body?

Rachel Wainwright was a successful attorney, but one with a troubled home life. Separated from her husband, fighting with her children, her life was cold and sterile. When her long-forgotten sexuality returns to her, how will it affect her, and those around her?

Althea now shares Rachel's body and her mind. To return to her own form, she must take power from Rachel's pleasure. And to do that, she must find work for her Idle Hands.

~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~

~You want him.~ a quiet voice whispered. ~Why not give him a suitable parting gift?~

Deliberately, she leaned back in her chair and crossed her legs, drawing his gaze to her. Catching Jeremy's eyes with her own, she slowly unfastened the top button on her blouse. She fingered the fabric, her fingers running up and down the exposed skin. They stopped when they encountered the next button, and she held her hand there, fingering the small disc of plastic. She wet her lips with her tongue.

“You know,” she said conversationally, “that I'm divorced.”

Jeremy nodded. She stood and walked around the desk. Her hips swayed lazily, falling into an ancient rhythm of seduction. Jeremy started to rise, but she laid a hand on his shoulder, pushing him back into his chair.

“And I'm so horny these days,” she sighed as she circled behind him, one hand trailing along the muscles of his back. Nice and strong, good. “I had to get myself off in the bathtub last night with my hands.” Part of her mind was aghast, unable to believe what she was saying. Another part reveled in it, giving in to passion. She raised her eyebrows. “It's customary,” she said, “to give a parting intern a gift. A sign of appreciation for all the hard work he or she has done.

“I had Madeline buy you a good bottle of scotch. After all, what does one get a colleague as a gift when they don't really know the person who they're buying the gift for? Quality alcohol is a nice, safe purchase.

“But I don't feel like being safe right now.” She stopped in front of him and perched on the edge of her desk. She crossed her legs, allowing her skirt to hike up. She smiled as she saw his eyes focus on the white skin of her thighs. She undid another button, allowing her blouse to fall further open, showing a slice of her lace-covered breasts. She glanced at his lap, smiling as she saw the tented cloth of his slacks, proof of his aroused state.

“Would you mind if I gave you a different sort of farewell gift, Jeremy?”

Her intern looked around the room, as if he was trying to find a hidden film crew. He wet his lips and swallowed nervously. “This is a joke, right? Or is it some sort of test? Or a trap? I tell you that I want to make love to you, and you pull the recommendation? Or is it that asshole Chad? I told him once I thought you were attractive, and he's been making remarks for weeks about how I have a thing for you. Did he tell you?”

She smiled and nodded. “It's a test, yes.” She undid another button. The blouse now gaped wide. She swallowed through a throat gone dry with lust. “The test is whether you last long enough to make love to me.”

After days of a strange sexual reawakening, Rachel Wainwright finally meets the reason for the wonderful change in her life. Althea Carpenter is a succubus who has been forced to take up residence in her mind. As she explains her history, and that of the succubi, Rachel is filled with sympathy for her plight, and agrees to help her regain her previous form.

Meanwhile, the spell of the succubus is having an effect on other members of Rachel's household. Goaded by urges he finds shameful and perverse, Alex finds love and acceptance in Maria's arms. And Sarah is being drawn to a new man in her life. Will they find happiness together? Or will their forbidden love doom them all? One thing is certain. When you look into the eyes of a succubus, you may see some Dark Reflections.

~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~

Rachel frowned. The fact that Maria and Jeremy and the kids weren't going to turn into her slaves was a relief. As was the fact that even a being as obviously sex-focused as Althea had a moral center, even if that center seemed to be no more than Thou shalt not hurt anyone you don't have to and Thou shalt not bang an unwilling partner.

“That's pretty much all it is,” Althea said cheerfully. “But I don't take stuff that isn't mine, either. Most people are happy to give it to me anyway.” She smiled at Rachel's expression. “Hello? I'm in your head, remember? I know what you're thinking.” Her smile grew dark, deep, and wicked. “And such naughty thoughts you're having, Rachel. Jealous of Maria when I suggest setting her up with Alex? Who are you thinking should be in his bed, if not her?”

She patted her cheek. “Don't worry, I'm not judging you.” Her look drew inward and she rose from her seat on the grass, her body inhumanly graceful. “But we're running out of time. It's almost morning. And holding together this illusion for you is a drain on my power. I need you to do something for me, my handmaiden.”

Rachel sighed and stood. “What is it?”

“My body is missing. I need you to find it.

“Now, Rachel, go with my blessing.” Stooping, she laid a gentle kiss on her brow. Rachel's skin burned at her touch. “And wake up.”

*****

With a start, Rachel opened her eyes. She was lying on her back. The covers had been pulled down to lie in a crumpled heap at the foot of the bed. Morning sunlight poured through the open windows, and the cotton curtains swayed in a soft spring breeze. More importantly, her husband was kissing her. From the warm feeling in her chest and groin, he had been arousing her for some time.

“Well, this is a wonderful way to wake up,” she murmured softly. She smiled down at her long-time lover and best friend. “Looking for someplace to hide your morning wood?” she teased.

Josh raised himself on his arms, moving forward so he could give her another good-morning kiss. “Amazing thing, the male body,” he said, when their lips parted. “No matter how many times you make love to a beautiful woman, it can't wait to do it again.”

She smiled at the compliment, looping her arms around his neck and drawing him down to her. How long had it been since they had spent a lazy morning in bed? Years, perhaps. For the first time in far too long, there were no urgent needs driving her. No cases to prepare for, no witnesses to depose, no briefs to write and file. If she and Josh wished, they could spend all day in bed.

~Ooh, that sounds nice. Yes, let's do that.~ Althea said.

Be quiet, you, Rachel said. Can't you leave me alone for a while?

~Actually, no. I can't. That's kind of the point of this whole exercise, isn't it? And just remember, the more you make love to Joshua, the quicker you will have the mental privacy you desire. Until then, get used to having company.~

She dragged her nails up his back, tickling her husband, watching through hooded lids as his back arched under her touch. God, I've missed this. The feeling of power, even when he's on top of me, seemingly in control.

~Being a woman is wonderful, is it not? At least, when you control your own destiny. This is why my mother spurned Adam and God. She would not allow herself to become subordinate. A tool to be used.~

Tell me, she asked, is this thing with our secretions...catching? If Jeremy makes love to another woman, would she be affected?

~What, are you worried about mankind catching a case of universal horniness, as if it were some sort of awesome venereal disease?~ Althea's voice was teasing. ~Fortunately, no. It would have happened way before now. We are a lusty bunch, although there aren't many of us. You don't have to be worried about being Patient Zero in the great Sex Plague of 2016.~

Sexy high school seniors Stacie and Tabitha are best friends in more ways than one! Teammates on the volleyball court, these hot girls are lovers as well!

But now their good-looking history teacher has been appointed the temporary coach of the volleyball team. Will these lusty young ladies be able to reach their ultimate goal, and drag Coach Glassman into bed?

~~~~~  Excerpt  ~~~~~

“Mr. Glassman?”

He looked up from his notes in the small coach's office next to the locker room. The practice had gone well, and he was thinking about making another change to the starting lineup. Consuela Barton, a tiny Filipina girl who had been adopted and brought to America by her childless parents, had thrown her body around with reckless abandon. Alan thought she might replace one of the girls on the back line.

Tabitha Harrington stood in the doorway, Stacie Reynolds looking over her shoulder.

“What can I do for you, Tabby?” He stood up, then frowned. “I thought everyone had left.”

Tabby nodded. “We waited until everyone else was gone,” she said. “I didn't want anyone to hear what I had to say to you.

“I wanted to thank you,” she said, voice trembling a little. “No teacher has ever stood up for me like you did today. Mr. Walton certainly wouldn't have.”

Alan sat on the edge of his desk, putting his eyes nearly level with the redhead. “Well, I can't speak for the rest of the staff. A lot of them are old and set in their ways.”

“More like fossilized,” said Stacie from her position in the doorway.

“But I won't let anyone use your...your sexual orientation as a way to mock you, any more than I would let someone make racist remarks about Jasmine or Consuela.”

“I know you won't,” said Tabitha. She took another step into the room, then paused for a moment. Alan regretted the fact that his lower body was exposed.

That's all you need. To get an erection and for these two to see it and report you. He shifted uncomfortably, trying to think of an excuse to quickly usher the two beautiful girls out of his office.

Suddenly, Tabby moved to his side and hugged him. He could feel her breasts pressing against his arm and her muscled legs were warm at his side. Before he could react she had raised her face and kissed him on the cheek.

“Thank you,” she whispered, her dark blue eyes shining. “I mean it.”

Alan cleared his throat nervously. “Tabby, I appreciate your…gratitude, but this isn't really appropriate,” he stammered.

“I understand,” she said softly, backing away. Although her voice was contrite, he thought he could detect the hint of a smirk in the curve of her lips.

Before he could say anything else, Stacie had entered the office, which was becoming distinctly crowded.

“It's really not fair,” she remarked. “I'm the one who has the hots for you, so why does she get to kiss you first?” Shouldering Tabby aside, she stepped into the vee of Alan's sitting legs, so close he could feel her small, exquisitely formed breasts through the cloth separating them. Leaning forward, she kissed him flush on the mouth, moaning softly. Her mouth opened quickly, her tongue swiping across his lips, as if she was sampling how he tasted.

Unable to respond, Alan blinked as she pulled away slightly. Gasping, he realized she had her hands on his thighs, her fingers slowly working their way towards his groin.

He came to his senses, almost panicking. “You have to leave,” he hissed. “Now. If someone saw this I'd be fired, and no school district would ever hire me again.”

Stacie opened her mouth, but Alan cut her off. Gently, but firmly, he removed her hand from his legs. “You're putting my entire future at risk, Stacie. Please stop.

“Go home. This never happened.”

HARBORSIDE NIGHTS is a sexy, hot, and evocatively real New Adult Romance series that follows a group of friends who have known one another for years as summer friends, and now come together after college to build their lives. They're tough, edgy, and accepting most of the time. This series is written in the same loving, raw, and emotional voice readers have come to love by New York Times & USA Today bestselling, award-winning author Melissa Foster.

 

In DISCOVERING DELILAH

 

After the death of her parents on the day of her college graduation, Delilah Armstrong thought she could finally follow her heart and come out to her closest friends, but the guilt of going against her parents' beliefs haunts her. The feelings she has for her best friend, Ashley, are stronger than anything she's felt before, but Delilah has never even kissed a girl, and fear stops her at every turn.

 

Ashley Carver promised herself that she would never again date another girl who wasn't out, but that was before she met intoxicatingly sweet and sexy Delilah.

 

When another girl offers to teach Delilah the ropes, it changes Delilah's whole world and gives her the courage to go after the only girl she really wants. But coming out isn't as easy as Delilah imagined, and moving past her parents' death and the feelings of guilt she is left with is even harder. The intense passion between Ashley and Delilah is too strong to deny, but coming together means risking everything.

 

Discovering Delilah is an edgy, evocative, romantic story of friendship, family, and the courage to love.

 

Harborside Nights series:

Catching Cassidy (Het)
Discovering Delilah (F/F)
Tempting Tristan (M/M)
Chasing Charley (Het)
Breaking Brandon (M/M)




Foster's love stories are perfect steamy romance beach reads for fans of Susan Mallery, Linda Lael Miller, Brenda Novak, Debbie Macomber, Jill Shalvis, Maisy Yates, and other big-family, small-town romance fans. The characters are romantic and loyal, some are billionaires, others are blue collar, and you're always guaranteed a happily ever after.

 The end has come. In the final chapter of our story, Althea, the immortal succubus, knows that the confrontation with the demon-spawn Kincaid is near. To lure him into their trap means putting the entire family in harm's way. And even if she succeeds, will the love they all share survive? Because when all you hold dear is at risk, sometimes you have to pay...Passion's Price.

~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~

“So...you're doing this for me?”

“Oh, no. I'm doing it for me. I'm not worried about your performance tonight.” She laid a hand on his cheek. “I know you'll be brilliant. I saw it the other day at your rehearsal. Someday, Alex, they are going to talk about you like they talk about Booth and Barrymore and Olivier. You're that good. All you need is time. And practice.” As his jaw dropped in astonishment at her praise, she continued. “But I need a couple of things. First, I need your power. The essence of a virile young man.” She closed her eyes, but her body shook in a shiver of desire, and she moved closer until their bodies were all but touching. “If I am right, Kincaid will be the most powerful demon-spawn I have faced in generations. And warding this house is a drain on my resources. I do not dare face him unless I am at the peak of my powers. Your seed will give me that.”

“And second?”

“I'm afraid, Alex. Not for myself,” she said hurriedly, as he opened his mouth in protest. “I've lived a long life. Longer than anyone else on this planet, when you think about it. If I had to, I would change many things. But I would not change how I have spent it. When I look back, I think I have made a difference.

“But I'm afraid of failing. Of failing you and your parents and all the rest. And of failing the Almighty herself. If I don't succeed tonight, if I challenge Kincaid and he defeats me, he will engage in an orgy of destruction the likes of which this town has never seen.”

She took a deep breath, and he was astonished to see tears glimmering in the glorious depths of her green eyes. “Alex, I want you to make me a promise.”

“Anything.”

“If I fail, if I die, and you somehow escape, I want you to call this number.” She handed him a small card. A phone number was printed on the white surface in stark black letters. No other information was to be seen. “I've given it to your parents as well. And to the rest of the family. It will help you reach my sisters, Lucifer and Tera. They will come. And when they do, Hell will pay.”

He nodded quietly and slipped the card into his back pocket.

“Good. That's done.” She sighed gustily. “I haven't been this nervous in years.”

“You have stage fright?”

She waved away his incredulous question. “Not really. Some. Screw it. Yes. I'm frightened. Before, all I had to lose was my own life. Now,” she hugged him tight, her breasts flattening against his chest. “I have a lot more at risk.”

Suddenly he felt a small, hot hand resting on his erect shaft. When he looked down, her eyes were twinkling, all sign of her prior anxiety fled. “Which is why,” she husked sexily, “I need to forget about all that for a while, and concentrate on your beautiful body instead.” With frightening ease, she had him naked from the waist down. “Why don't you put down that silly script, and fill your hands with something else instead?”

Mary was running away from a lifetime of abuse, looking only for a safe place to raise her children. Eveline had been rejected by her family, and was trying to start her life over. When chance threw them together, it was only a matter of time before the sparks of desire caught fire. But will their mutual attraction be enough? Only time will tell, as Mary attempts to embrace her…Innocent Passion.

 

~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~

 

“We're home!” Becca shouted cheerfully as Mary turned on the lights. She took off her jacket, then helped Debbie do the same thing, hanging them up neatly on the battered coatrack by the door. Free of the jacket, Debbie toddled over to her, her small round face creased in a frown.

 

“I'm hungwy, Mommy,” she said.

 

“I'll have something ready for you in a few minutes, sweetheart,” she said absently. Then she realized that Evey was looking at her with something like horror in her eyes.

 

*****

 

'Mommy?' This child? Evey's mind reeled. She had thought the two girls were Mary's nieces. Or perhaps she was a babysitter. She looked at the two children and her mind did some rapid mental math. She couldn't have been more than fifteen when her first child was conceived. If that. Maybe less.

 

Mary looked at her, her chin raised, daring her to say something. “They're both mine,” she said with painful dignity, “and no one is going to take them away from me.”

 

“I wasn't judging,” she replied quietly. “I do social work myself. I've seen worse, believe me. I've seen thirteen-year-old boys strung out on heroin. I've seen women who shouldn't even be allowed to be near children having baby after baby. I've seen...too much,” she finished lamely, unwilling to catalog all of the horrors she had seen over the last three years.

 

“You talk funny,” Rebecca observed, from a spot down around her knees.

 

“Rebecca!” Mary said, her voice horrified. She looked at Evey in apology. Instead, she knelt down to kiss the child's cheek.

 

“Ah do, don't ah, punkin?” she said, emphasizing her Georgia drawl. “Why, bless yo heart, but you're just as sweet as pah.”

 

The little girl giggled, then spun away to sit on the couch. “You mentioned a shower?” Eveline asked, feeling her frigid, waterlogged jeans sticking uncomfortably to her thighs.

 

“Of course,” Mary said, blushing. She led her down a short hall to a bathroom. “Just toss your clothes outside the door. I'll put them in the dryer. It's one of the few extras this place has.”

 

She skinned out of her wet clothes quickly, tossed them blindly out the bathroom door, then stepped under the blessedly hot spray of the shower, letting the heat soak into her bones. Unwilling to get her long black hair wet when she had a long drive home in terrible weather, she lathered with a bar of soap over and over, until the last remnants of chill had been driven away.

 

She stepped out, drying herself with a threadbare but clean towel. She was just hanging it up and beginning to wonder what she was gong to wear while her clothes finished drying when there was a polite tap at the door. Mary came in, with a small pile of clothes held in her arms.

 

“I thought these might fit,” she started, then broke off, staring at her naked body. Her pale face, her skin like cream under Evey's gaze, flushed scarlet.

 

Eveline kept her face carefully neutral. Oh. So it's like that, is it? But inside, her heart leaped, even as her belly spasmed in frustrated longing. Two children, and a lesbian? She must have one hell of a story to tell. And I doubt it's a happy one.

 

“Thanks,” she said calmly, taking the clothes.

 

“I've...I've got your clothes in the dryer,” Mary stuttered, still unable to peel her eyes away from her chest. “Come on out when you’re ready.”

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