Last Chapters and Conclusion to Interviewing the Italian

Chapter Ten – To Hell With It
It didn’t take me long to figure out that August was blind. Sexy, alpha, but blind. I think that his cousin and ex-fiancé just made him look like a jack-ass. Then I felt bad for him. I got off the bed and looked down at him. His face was itched in lines of worry and perhaps realization.
Despite his tendencies to be Alpha male one minute and vulnerable the next, I found myself getting to know him, perhaps even falling for him a little bit. Maybe it was just better to leave now and cut my losses. I never mixed business with pleasure, and from the kiss that I did share with Augostino Romani, I would soon be looking for pleasure and damn the business part of it. I had to get out.

Yet, instead of walking out of the room and leaving him to his thoughts, I made a ghastly mistake. As if I was in some type of trance, my hands found their way to his hands, which were still buried in his hair. I couldn’t pull them back if I wanted to. The silken strands felt cool to my touch and I became lost. Moonlight streaming in the large bay window caught his eyes. I was glad I couldn’t see what color they were. They looked like small lakes in the man’s head, shining in the moonbeams. I sat down on the edge of the bed, my thigh resting next to his abdomen. I could feel that he had stopped breathing. He was probably wondering, just like I was wondering, what the hell am I doing?
He pulled his hands from underneath mine. Grabbing my wrists he pulled my hands to his chest. I could feel his heart beating a tattoo rhythm and his breathing hitched. I knew, really I did, that I shouldn’t be doing this but I didn’t want to stop.

“August, I…” I didn’t know what to say. I could tell him the woman in side of me was screaming for release but that scared me. No, I didn’t want to say anything. I watched as his sat up, still clutching my hands.

“Yvonne, this wasn’t supposed to happen. I didn’t want it to happen, but ever since that interview, I can’t stop thinking about it happening. So before I go any further there are some things that I have to tell you.” August sighed and let go of my hands. I know that tone of voice. It was the same tone of voice my mother got when she had to tell me our father packed his bags and left. I wasn’t going to like what August was going to say. My gut was in a g-force dive into my feet and I couldn’t stop the sinking feeling overwhelming me.

“I’m all ears.” I still needed to abate my desire for this man, but I wanted answers first. I tried to put a clamp on my desire as August started talking.

“I figured that my own cousin was the leak. I just didn’t think that Lucy would be involved in it. Lucy knows something about me that could probably take me down and make me never show my face again. If she thought I was on to her being involved, she would blackmail me.” August leaned back and stared at the ceiling. I could tell his was frustrated from his tense posture. I could also tell from the way he was clinging to my hands.

“Go on…” I said, wiggling my fingers a bit. He let my hands go and I put them in my lap.

“You see, Lucy knows something about me that could change my life as I know it. Raphael my cousin already knows.”

“What is it!” I screamed. I was never one for the dramatic, or suspense.

“I am not Augostino Romani.” He said with a whisper. I stopped. Everything stopped moving. As far as I knew, there was only one Augostino Romani and this man in front of me was it. Now the stranger was telling me that he wasn’t August?

“Come again?” It was all I could say.

“My name is Augostino Conti. My mother had an affair with my father, a very rich man in Italy, and they had me. He didn’t want to have anything to do with me. That is until his real wife died giving birth to her second son. Mother and son both died in labor, but to make himself feel better, my father, Piero Romani, came and took me from my mother. He gave me his name and I haven’t seen her since.” He sounded choked up.

“How old were you?”

“I was four. Raphael is my mother’s nephew. My true cousin. He knows who I really am.” August’s voice cracked and I could tell he was in pain. That type of pain I could relate to. That type of pain was human.

“So if you make your cousin out to be the leak, then he would expose you?”

“I am sure of it. Raphael said he had information on my mother. Apparently Piero paid her off pretty well for her trouble of birthing me, and Raphael made it seem as though she still missed me. I wanted to find her. Raphael said he knew where she was, but he needed to get out from under my father’s business. So I brought him here.”

“Has he told you where she is or how to get a hold of her?” I pitied him. All of this time, I greatly admired him, and really what he needed was a supportive ear. I was no better than all the other women that have launched themselves at him. I felt like an ass.

“No, and he has been holding out. I doubt that he will after I punched him.”

“So, you think that Lucy and Raphael would take you down because of your last name?”

“Yes! I know it!” August began to yell. He bolted off the bed and began to pace. “The name Romani means power. I probably wouldn’t even have all of this if my last name wasn’t Romani. It opened doors for me, I got into the university because of this name. Everything that I have would be a lie.”

I hated agitation, but August’s lopsided view of things made me want to yell right back.

“Stop that.” I yelled. “You are not made of your last name. You did the work, you got the grades, you developed your brand, and it had nothing to do with your name.”

“You’re biased. You have been following Romani Enterprises for years.”

“So! Do you think your ideas would have been less brilliant if they were named Conti Enterprises? You are still his son, despite what your birth certificate says. Why would they blackmail you?”

“If it came out that I wasn’t his second son that really died in child birth, all of my inheritance would be forfeit. I am illegitimate. I used the inheritance as seed money to start the company.”

“I see.” I didn’t know what to think. If he paid them off, they would come back for more. If he didn’t his company would forfeit its name, his father’s indiscretions would be exposed and August would feel like he lost.

“I had to tell you now. I feel like I have involved you too much as it is…” His voice trailed off.

“Can I ask you something?” Since August was airing his dirt, I felt like I had to get sure answers.

“Yes. Please.” He said. His voice losing some of the hard edge I had grown accustomed to.

“Why the interview set up and why did you ask me to be your personal journalist?”

I heard him give a sigh and watched as he came to sit next to me on the bed.

“Because I knew that if anyone could expose me for the real me that I am, it would be you.” He chuckled as he said it. Did I miss a private joke?

“Come again?”

“Like I said, I suspected Raphael as the leak. I also know that Raphael reads just about anything that you particularly write. You should hear him go on about the great Savannah Martin. So I figured if you found out about my parentage and aired it, it would beat Raphael to it, thus no blackmail. Then I met you and spending the day with you, I didn’t want to go through with it.”
“You didn’t want to go through using me, you mean?” I said. It was a hell of a situation to be in; I couldn’t tell if I was mad or flattered. I was just floored.

“Using you, exposing myself, being attracted to you… all of it. I can’t play this game anymore.”

I didn’t see him move. I just felt his hands grab my shoulders and the warmth of his lips close to mine. The moment I took to gasp in shock was apparently the only moment August needed. His lips clamped down on mine and I felt him lean into me. His fingers stroked a fire up and down my arms and I knew I was a goner. There would be no running away from this kiss. I didn’t want to, I didn’t want to run. I just wanted more, more of the drunk feeling he was giving me and more of August the human and not August my idol.

Chapter Eleven – To Everything….

I kissed him as if it was going to be the last thing I did. I felt his warm tongue invade the cavern on my mouth. The tip of his tongue traced my teeth. I had never felt anything like that and I felt a jolt of heat fire through me. His kiss was every bit as intoxicating as it was the first time, only this time, I wasn’t running. I kissed him back with the intensity I felt. Drowning in the taste of his full lips, I finally let my tongue brush his. It was an exciting duel. His tongue tasted of cloves and mint, an erotic mix that caused moisture to pool in my clenched pussy. I ran my fingers through his hair, pulling him closer to me, angling myself so I could feel his body weight on top of me.

Feeling euphoric, I let out a moan. He froze. I opened my eyes and found him searching my face with a huge question in his eyes.

I put my index finger on his chin and traced his kiss swollen lips with my thumb. Then cupping his cheek, I stroked his short, dark stubble and waited.

“Are you sure you can do this Yvonne? I never meant to…” I put my fingers to August’s lips.

“I never meant to either. I don’t ever do this. I can do this and I want to do this August. Take me, I’m yours.”

That was all the encouragement August needed. His gaze met mine I witnessed his transformation from an unsure man to a hungry wolf. His pupils got round and I sucked in a breath. It isn’t that I had never been with anyone, but I had never been with a man like August. He was experienced, and from what I could tell, passionate. Yet, I knew I needed this moment, and I wasn’t going to run from it. His hands began to run down my sides, feeling for the bottom of my tank top. His touch was hot to my cool skin, sending jolts through me every time his fingers grazed my skin. His lips found mine and this time the kiss was leisurely, but still intense. His tongue traced my lips; his soft spoken Italian endearments came out in rasps. His nose nuzzled my neck and he started to kiss and lick my neck, my shoulders, my arms and then my finger tips. He pulled each digit into his mouth and sucked each one with the same care.

He pulled me towards his chest, until my legs wrapped around his torso. Looking into my eyes, August stared at me for what seemed like an eternity.

“Don’t flinch.” His low aroused voice shook me out of my stupor. Before I could even ask, August took his two hands and ripped the flimsy tank top in two down the center. My modest breasts poked out as if they had been caged.

“You know I could have taken that off right?” I chuckled. That chuckle quickly released into a groan as August dove in between my breasts. I didn’t see anything funny about the pleasurable torture he was administering to my breasts. He sucked a tip into his mouth, bit down gently, and then caressed the bitten nipple with his tongue. His alternating on each nipple and the pain of his bite combined with the pleasure of his soothing tongue sent me into orgasm. I let out a low moan as I felt the edges of the universe begin to fold in on me. I never thought that I would have an orgasm from someone playing with my breasts, but August did it and I couldn’t have felt more complete. We were just getting started, and that elusive orgasm was already out of the way. I had never ‘finished’ during sex in my past, but August brought me to the big O before we even had intercourse! I smiled to myself as I let his hands wander over my body. The intense feeling in the pit of my stomach began to build again. I needed to do something or I was going to pass out before we got t the good stuff. I began tugging at his shirt, pulling it over his torso and letting my fingertips graze his taught skin. I heard his sharp intake of breath and smiled. At least he was affected as much by this encounter as I was. After pulling the damn shirt over his head, we were finally chest to chest, making skin to skin contact. His heat was scorching my flesh, but I didn’t care. He was the only one that was going to soothe the fire in the pit of my belly.

I ran my fingers over his chest, down his abs and to his pants buckle. I didn’t want to wait. I unbuttoned his pants and he arched a little off the bed so I could get them off. I unlocked my legs from around him and the idea hit me. It wasn’t graceful sliding off his lap, but I finally got my long limbs into a kneeling position in between his spread legs. I kissed the lines of his torso, gentle tugging his pants down. As I got to the band of his boxer briefs, I took in a deep breath. Moving lower I spotted the target, rock hard and needing attention. Slowly, I began to blow on August’s marble like cock through the satin material of his underwear. It began to jerk towards my mouth, but I was not in a rush. I had never been so aroused and I wasn’t going to miss a single moment.

I let my tongue quickly lick the tip as I pulled his pants all the way off. It was time to get rid of the other barrier. I took a seam of his underwear and looked at him. I smiled, slow, seductively and his eyes got big.

“Don’t flinch,” I said my voice raspy as I tugged and tore his underwear from his body. I could feel his belly shake as he chuckled. You want be laughing long, Mr. Romani. I licked my lips and in one swift movement I had most of August’s length in my mouth, my tongue running circles around the sensitive ‘v’ underneath his head. Pursing my lips as if I was sucking on a straw, I tried to suck in as much of his gorgeous tan cock as I could. His hips bucked and arched off the bed. I let my tongue caress the bulging vein on the underside of his thick cock. The taste was sweet and salty, an inebriating mix of sex and male assaulted my nose and I thought for a moment I was about to catapult myself into another orgasm.
I felt his hands on my shoulders just as I was moving my head up and down his shaft.

“Dio, belissima, please stop. I won’t last.” He grabbed my head and gently pulled my head away from his throbbing cock. It came out of my mouth with a pop. Gently gripping my head, he pulled me up to his lips for a kiss. As our lips found each other again, August maneuvered so I was lying underneath him. I felt his fingers in the band of my shorts and I knew what was coming. I heard the rip and felt the fabric drop from my heated core.

Tearing my head away to gasp for air, I had to regain some sense.
“If we keep this up, we are going to need to buy a new wardrobe August.”

“Or you could just not wear any clothes around me for the rest of your life.” He growled in my neck. I was too far gone in passion for the brevity of August’s words to hit me at that moment. It was his three fingers caressing my nether lips that threw everything into a spiral. His index finger was teasing my clit like a pearl in oil while his middle digit worked in and out of my tight walls. My inner core sucked at his finger, pulling it deeper and his urgency taking me higher.

“You are so tight belissima,” August’s throaty baritone sounded far away. “How long has it been?”
My pussy walls clinched again as his fingers kept stoking the fire into a raging inferno. What did he even ask me? I smiled to myself as I remembered the question.

“Ahhhhhh…” I moaned bucking my hips under August’s touch. His pace was quickening and I was about to fall over the precipice again.

“How long?” His finger’s stilled as August asked me again.

“Around four years.” I panted, writhing as August’s fingers held perfectly still inside of my wet folds.

August groaned deep and positioned himself in between my legs. He leaned over me and my legs instinctively wrapped around his torso. He positioned his head at my entrance, my insides already clutching in anticipation of his nice cock invading the space.

Bracing himself on his arms, August began to push. The beginning was almost painful and I felt like a virgin again. The head of his cock was fully inside of me as he leaned closer to me. I could feel the warmth of his breath in my ear and I heard his soft whisper: “Forgive me belissima”.

His hips plunged forward and I felt a searing hot pain on my walls. His girth completely stretched my walls. I bit down on my bottom lip to keep from crying out. He held still for only a moment, and then he pulled slowly out. As slowly as he pulled out, his hips strained to go back in at the same lethargic pace. In an instant, I was on the precipice again. As I felt August’s chest rub against mine, I noticed that I was beginning to sweat in between my breasts. I needed release. I put my feet on the bed and arched my back to meet August’s slow thrusts with thrusts of my own. August reared up on the impact. He grabbed my hips and the leisurely pace was gone. He pulled me into him, matching our thrusts and finally pushing me over the edge.
“August, I’m going to…” I panted, trying desperately to catch a breath that seemed to elude my lungs.

“Yes, bellisima, come for me.” As if at his command, my pussy clinched around his dick and my juices flowed. I arched my back and let out a low howl as my orgasm crashed around me.
August pulled out completely and grabbed his cock. I watched as his large hands grasped his cock and one, two strokes and his seed began to shoot on my belly. White and stringy, several spurts landed side by side. He groaned and rolled to his side. I took my fingers and drew some circles in the semen he deposited on my stomach.

He was looking down at me, some of the dazed passion dulled by our orgasms.

“I’m sorry. I didn’t know if you were on anything and I didn’t have a condom with me.” He kissed my forehead gingerly and went to the bathroom. I listened to the water running and it was lulling me to sleep. I jumped when I felt a steaming cloth touched my stomach. I watched August through half lidded eyes as he washed my stomach with gentle caresses and light touches. As he finished up and toss the cloth on the nightstand, I watched his movements. For the first time since I met him, he looked content. He gathered me into his arms, pressing my back into his chest. Pulling the covers over us and throwing his legs over mine, August snuggled in and began a rhythmic breathing sound. Listening to his breathing I realized that I was in love with August Romani.



I didn’t have time to even think about sneaking out of the bed. August was up and out before my eyes opened. If it weren’t for the slight soreness I felt in between my legs, I would have thought that I dreamed about having sex with August. It wasn’t a dream. I knew it wasn’t a dream when I heard the door open and spied August coming into the room with jeans, sans shirt and a tray. I sat up, covering my naked form with the sheet and tried to get used to this different side of August. He was smiling. It was a crooked smile, almost a self conscience smile, with his upper lip hitched just a little, but it was a smile nonetheless, and I was captivated.
“Good morning sweetheart. Breakfast is served.” August voice sounded boyish, almost light. And it was the first time he hadn’t barked or growled. Then I remembered, he hadn’t had sex in two years. Having sex would take the bite out of any man. My ears reddened as I remembered our ‘coupling’ last night. I didn’t know what else to call it, it was more than just sex but it was less than a slow sensual encounter.

August placed the tray on my lap and sat across from me. I felt the journalistic itch of wanting to rattle off a million questions, but somehow, some part of me was content in just sipping the orange juice and staring at August as he watched me eat.

I quirked and eyebrow at him as I stabbed a piece of cantaloupe with a fork.

“Aren’t you hungry?” I held the juicy fruit to his mouth and watched as his pink lips wrapped around my fork. I smiled as he chewed the food thoughtfully, and I watched his Adam’s apple bob as he swallowed. We sat in silence as I fed him bits and pieces of what was on the plate. I didn’t know what to say but I think we both knew that the dynamics of this ‘relationship’ had changed.
I finished eating and removed the tray. I grabbed a robe and sat up with my legs crossed.

“So, do you want to address the elephant in the room or should I?” I said, looking at August’s gaze.

“I love that about you.” I started at his statement. He held up his hand and shook his head. “Please, there is a lot to talk about and I think that you want to hear it before you decide on us.” He took a deep breath and I felt myself bracing again. Why did I feel like he was going to drop the elephant on me?

“It isn’t simple really. But I will try to make you understand. Yvonne, I think I have been following your career just as much as you have followed mine. I have read everything that you have published. I was determined to meet you sooner or later after reading your application to the scholarship foundation. It just wasn’t time yet. But I felt like I could tell you anything. When I set up that interview, I wanted to see if my gut was right.”

“As far as the leak, I was pretty sure that it was Raphael, but I figured it would be a good way to see if we were compatible. To see if you thought the same way I did, if I could trust you. So I set up the interview, the personal journalist thing right after I broke it off with Lucy. And the mistress thing, ” He paused. “I didn’t want to show up to the embassy dinner alone.”
“Can I ask one question August?” I asked, crossing my arms in front of me. I wasn’t sure if I should have been pissed or flattered. He nodded. “This business about your father, your last name, all that, is it true?”

“Yes, that is all true. Even Adriano doesn’t know that I am not that brother that died in childbirth. I am his brother, but by a different mother.” August looked pained at the admission. Maybe one day I could get him to tell Adriano.

“Ok, so tell me why your inheritance would be forfeit if you came out about your mother now?”

“Because the inheritance was set up by Adriano’s mother family. All the money that my father had at the time came from them. The name is power, but there was no money until my father married her. Piero Romani had the name, she had the money. If they were to find out they would make sure I would give the inheritance back. But I don’t want put them through that.”
That had my wheels churning, but I needed him to keep talking.

“So what about Lucy?”

“It was like I told you, I was never in love with Lucy. She didn’t demand too much and it was uncomplicated. But then I caught her with other men. And I knew that I didn’t love her. And the first thing I did was pick up a Savannah Martin article. Perhaps it is a family trait, but I think we, Adriano, Raphael, and myself all had a soft spot for you. Raphael thinks your brilliant and Adriano likes that you are straight to the point. But I fell in love with what wasn’t written in the lines. You had this passion about whatever you were writing about. After Lucy and I fell out, I told myself it was finally time to meet you. Lucky I had a leak at the time.” He smiled and I couldn’t help but to laugh.

“You know, a girl could let that go to her head.” He smiled and picked my hands up in his.

“I know it seems crazy. But there is something I have to do before we go any further.” He said, he voice dropping to a serious tone.

“Well do it.” I said. I didn’t think it could get any crazier. It did.

“You’re fired.” August said.

I started laughing. I couldn’t help it.

“I am glad you fired me August, because I was about to quit.”

****Months Later****

I closed the laptop on my manuscript. I was finally finished. I had written about August, but August Romani, the man, and not the myth; and I used my real name. After I sent the interview to my editor, I left the magazine. It was my last great interview. When my editor read it, he asked me if it was all true and if August was going to let me say anything about the leak, his broken engagement and his new love, Yvonne Mason.

I laughed and told him that August helped me write it. That was the truth. After August ‘fired’ me, I was free to really write about him as he wanted to be known. He really wasn’t the arrogant bastard that most of the press called him. He spent most of the time trying to keep people from knowing his secret of his birth.
At my urging, August finally told Adriano the truth, and the funny thing was, Adriano already knew. He said it didn’t change ‘a damn thing’. August set up a trust in the name of the deceased August Romani and told his father that it contained all the money from the inheritance and then some.

Piero Romani had a surprise my dear August. He had adopted him legally right after August hauled Raphael overseas to work for him. August was indeed, truly, in name Augostino Romani. I would like to think that Piero after 32 years grew a conscience and really made August his son. But I knew it was because I called him and told him that I was writing a book on August and threatened Piero that he would be portrayed as a horrible father if he didn’t do something to soothe August’s soul.

He had laughed at me then. When I started to pull the names of mistresses out of my hat, he stopped laughing. He told me I was a shark. I told him that I have been called worse.
I snapped out of my musings when I looked up and saw August standing up. He put a desk in his office for me to work while he was working. Possessive, maybe, but I didn’t want to be separated from him either. There was still much more to learn about the formidable Augostino Romani, but I was a fast learner. I smiled at him and he smiled back. It was the shyest most sincere smile I had seen from him; but from being around him, I knew that something was up.

I stood up and met him. His office was still huge even with the addition of my desk and a love seat. He took my hand and led me over to the couch. August took my heels off my feet and began to massage them. His blue eyes began their transformation to the stormy navy I had come to love.

“Yvonne, can I tell you something?” His voice was husky, gravely, and made my pulse race. I tried to sound nonchalant as I tipped my head to the side and nodded in answer to his question. August took a deep breath and sighed. “I love you.” I tensed. He hadn’t said it in three months. Even though I knew I was in love with him, and he sort of mentioned it after our first time together, he had never said it.

I felt the tears well up in my eyes and I bolted into August’s lap and began to shower his face with kisses.

“I love you too August.” Secretly I thanked my stars that I decided to wear my lucky sneakers. This turned out to be the best damn assignment I’d ever had.

New Release – Novella – Amory’s Mate by Nevea Lane

You asked, now you shall receive.   We ran an experiment for a while of shorter stories, however, most fans have indicated they want something longer… (don’t we all… *snicker*)  So here I give to you, Amory’s Mate, a longer work that will knock your socks off with action and sensuality.     The heroine is a independent damsel that is in distress but you won’t see her faint nor swoon.   She is packing guns and knows how to use them.     Here is a blurb and an excerpt.  It is available now at


Amory's Mate


Blurb –

Running in the woods through deep snow in the middle of the night wasn’t a good idea no matter who you were. Running through the woods at night, during a blizzard with a stolen laptop, several stolen microchips, and two goons chasing you was an even worse idea. Angel Harmon was always full of ideas, but this late-night run hadn’t been her plan. She thought for the hundredth time that hour that all she was doing was her job. She thought she’d chosen a safe career in the IT field. Being a security specialist, she found security breaches in websites and company programs. All she was doing was her job, and now someone was dead and she was obviously next.

Amory Monteclaire had been out on a run with his packmates when he’d crossed paths with the mocha skinned female running through the woods.  Her scent was intoxicating enough for him to want her, the fact that she was in danger made him want to protect her.  The question is, would the wildly independent woman stay in his world once she was out of danger?


“Angel.” It was all he could say; his chest was heaving, the urge to howl was too close, and her lips were still pressing closed-mouthed kisses on his cheek and his chin.

“Amory,” she returned. Her voice was serious, even if she had no idea what she was doing or what he was saying. She sighed then laughed. Stopping her assault on his body with her mouth—for which he was grateful—and sitting up, she looked him in the eye. Her normally almond-shaped eyes were in the most seductive slits he’d ever seen. There was something to be said about a woman who could look at a man without a look of fear—he just couldn’t think what it was. What he saw, in that moment, was the warrior his Angel really was. Her look was sensual and defiant. His chest swelled as she stared at him. “What? You think I’m going to cower because of what you are? You think you howling, growling, grunting, and whimpering is going to stop this want I have for you? Are you really that bad of a wolf, Amory?” That last question was asked in defiance, as if she was daring him. “Well, are you? Are you that bad of a wolf that you don’t think I can handle you?”



Go pick up your copy and of course, let me know what you think.    Happy Reading!

Interviewing the Italian (Chapters Four and Five)

Chapter Four


He never did answer that question about the gun or the Doberman. His pink lips shifted into something akin to a smile but with a dangerous edge to it.  Augostino Romani was a hard man to figure out.  Instead of answering, he stood up and offered me his hand.  I looked at his hand and then back up to his gaze. I was still sitting. Why wasn’t he answering me?  When someone avoids you like that, you don’t just blindly go with them, regardless of how handsome he was.

He took a deep breath and I could see his chest expand, stretching the material of his plum colored shirt. Does he ever wear anything that made him less appealing? I noticed he had forgone the tie today and his top button was undone.  I could not take my gaze off the furtive showing of his neck.  It was hypnotic watching him do something as simple as swallowing.  He cleared his throat and my eyes snapped to his.  His hand still outstretched, his fingers curled to a ‘come to me’ gesture.

“I’m going to take you on a tour of my offices. Everything you’ll need to know will become clear eventually.” His tone dropped to a dangerous vibrato that exuded confidence and mystery.  Swallowing and taking a fortifying breath, I nodded. . I was rarely intimidated by anything, especially not a man, but deep down I felt like August was more than just a mere man. He was a danger to my view of the world. He was powerful, true, but he didn’t try to bully me, although he could,  from the predatory way he walked, I knew August was rarely told no or denied, but there was something about him that was definitely hidden, a secret.  Most people aren’t arrogant for the fuck’s sake of being an ass.   August was no different, unfortunately for him,   I had a serious case of curiosity when it came to him.

I took his hand and allowed him to lead me out of his office.  He tucked my arm safely inside his and I felt like we were walking more like a couple than boss and employee.  As we passed his secretary’s desk, she tried to mask the look of shock on her face. I knew what she was looking at. I would be shocked to if I saw my boss linked arm and arm with one of his employees.   He didn’t seem to notice, or he  just didn’t care because he told her to cancel any appointments for today and hold all his calls, except any from Adriano.  She swallowed and her eyes narrowed as her gaze settled on me. Returning her same icy stare, I wondered if she knew just how green and jealous she looked. I have seen her type before I thought as I looked at her from head to toe, she was the unassuming secretary, but it was a strategic plan. I could tell that the simple ponytail that held her auburn curls took time to perfect. Her ‘minimal’ make up was actually a lot of make-up used to look natural. Her simple black pencil skirt had a slit up the front thigh and her top was a size too small.  Yes, I knew her type and she worried too much. I was not about to cross that line of boss and employee. She can have that role. It wasn’t in the cards for me. I didn’t let my eyes waiver from hers as August signed some papers she handed to him.  What did I have to be ashamed of? Finally, the game grew tiresome and she averted her gaze to August.  He had been staring at her as well.  I am pretty sure he did not miss the visual show down between me and “Sally Secretary.”  I knew he didn’t as he took his hand and covered my fingers that were resting in the crook of his elbow.  His heated touch shattered the icy moment between the secretary and me.  His hands were soft yet slightly calloused. Apparently he wasn’t always privileged; there was some point where he must have worked, either for fun or for a living. He kept getting more and more interesting.  August propelled me out of the door and took me on a tour of his offices. There was the accounting, human resources and so many names I couldn’t remember.  Yet, the people changed but the response to August was always the same. He was respected and feared at the same time. Was he really a tyrant to work for, or was it that he never really interacted with his employees?

As we approached a huge set of metal double doors, August finally let go of my arm. I honestly didn’t even notice that he had kept me that close during the two hour tour of his business.  He turned to look at me with a very serious stare. His eyes were a cool blue, as if he was trying to see through me.

He put his hands in his black tailored slacks and studied me for a moment. I returned his gaze evenly, even though a part of me wanted to yell ‘what?’

“This is the lab. This is where all of the new projects are housed.  Before we walk through that door, I need to know that I have total loyalty to me and that you will not even think to speak about what you have seen.”  It wasn’t phrased as a question, and I didn’t take it as one. A part of me prickled and got defensive. He did a background check on me for heaven’s sake!  As hard as it was, I pushed the defensive feeling down and attempted to sound civil. After all, this was his idea.  I latched my hands behind my back and bit my tongue so none of my my angry retorts came out of my mouth.

“Mr. Romani, please don’t show me anything if you feel as though I can’t be trusted, I won’t take it personal. I can tell you that I don’t leak, I don’t spy, and I definitely don’t steal. You, having researched me as well, should know this.” Damn, that still sounded bitchy.  I knew it when he raised that one damned eyebrow at me again. I really knew it when I saw a line in his squared jaw tick. Taking a deep breath I tried to recover my wayward bitchiness. I purposely dropped my tone to a husky breathlessness that I hoped took all edge off what I was trying to say. “What I am trying to say is that, no, I won’t say anything, but you don’t have to take my word for it. The tour can stop here if you like.”

I ventured to look into his eyes again as his hands came out of his pocket. They were clinched in tight fists.  He was still appeared agitated, because his cool blue eyes had turned into that threatening navy color again.  He walked extremely close to me and his nose was almost touching mine. I had to lift my chin just to make eye contact. I could feel the heated air coming from his flared nostrils and settling around my face. Should I apologize?

“My employees call me August. No one calls me Mr. Romani. No one.”  He said through gritted teeth. Abruptly, he turned and walked to a mirrored black surface next to the doors and pressed his hands against it. A cyan light scanned both of his large hands and the double doors slid open with a faint swoosh.

He stood to the side and with both hands motioned for me to walk through the doors. I hurried through them as if I was being chased. If I was honest to myself, I just didn’t want to be alone with the man. He was intoxicating one minute and had me scared senseless the next. All because I called him by his last name he got in my face?  That was the second time he got testy when I mentioned it. I had a feeling this was going to be a real interesting assignment.

I followed him around as he showed me various projects he was working on. I asked him questions about his timeline for launch, his other ideas and as he talked, my own excitement started building inside of me. By the time the tour of the lab had finished, I almost found myself regretting being a mere journalist instead of an engineer. His work seemed so fresh and it was hard not to get caught up in the rush of problem solving.  Walking around the lab seemed to put him at ease as well because he was no longer growling. As we rode in the elevator back to his office, I glanced at my watch. It was past six o’clock in the evening? How could I have not noticed how late it was and we missed lunch? As if on cue, my stomach let out a low growl. I sent a sidelong glance in August’s direction and I could tell he heard it. He couldn’t keep the smirk off his face if he wanted to. As embarrassing as it was, I needed to satisfy my stomach.  I knew I had some sort of pasta at my apartment.

As we walked into his office, I picked up my shoulder bag and just began talking.

“Ok, so I will meet you back here tomorrow August?”  His head bobbed up from the papers he was gathering into briefcase. His narrowed gaze halted me. What did I say now?

“What part of 24/7 didn’t you understand Yvonne?” His said, sounding even more dangerous than he did at the lab entrance.

“I’m a writer, I thought it was a figure of speech.” I know he wasn’t thinking what I prayed he wasn’t thinking!

“I don’t use ‘figures of speech’. I say exactly what I mean. When I said 24/7 I meant just that.” His tone was low, but the way he snapped his briefcase closed and took my shoulder bag from me.  Taking a firm hold on my elbow, he marched me over to his bookcase.  Pressing an unseen button, unseen because I was still in shock, I saw the bookcase slide back to reveal a private elevator. Who was he, Batman?  I was speechless as he escorted me into the elevator I stayed speechless.  He expected me really to be around him all day and night?  Apparently. He led me to a sleek black sports car. I shook off the shock long enough to notice we were in a private garage.   There were two other cars, a white formal looking Lexus and another black pick-up with alloy wheels. There was also a motorcycle. This man was constantly shocking me. Most people with his wealth would have at least had a driver.

I cleared my throat as I watched him put our bags in the back of his trunk. He shrugged off his suit coat and laid it in the trunk over our bags. August closed the trunk quickly and opened my side of the door. I slid in, almost afraid to say a word.  After he slid in the car and turned on the ignition, only then, did he explain his rude behavior.  He took a deep breath and for a moment, I thought he would apologize.

“I am a loner, and I am not used to having to explain my actions to anyone.  When I said 24/7 I thought you understood. I mean where I go, you go, always, home, work, play, you are there.” He rushed out, as he rolled up his sleeves to his elbows. Does this man have a gentle side? Hell, does he even know how to apologize? My stomach chose to pick that moment to make its emptiness known.  I was too hungry to even come up with a hot tempered reply that would satisfy me.  “Let us get you fed huh?” his tone softening, almost sounding as if he was concerned.  Yet, a part of me felt agitated and worried. Scolding myself for not thinking this through, and realizing that I really don’t know who August is, I started to fidget in the low bucket seats.   This probably wasn’t the best ‘impulsive’ thing that I have done. I haven’t even told Lena yet.   I pulled my cell phone out of my pocket and began to type a quick email to Lena, vaguely explaining what was going on.  I caught him throwing me sidelong glances. I wasn’t offering up any more information.

“What are you doing?” I realized that he could have whispered as quiet as it was in the speeding sports car.  Yet, August doesn’t whisper, he either growls or stares.  There is no such thing as whispering with him. As I contemplated an answer, I saw his forearms tense waiting for my response. His veins began to bulge from the skin, and I quickly swallowed. Damn him.

“Sending out a text so everyone knows I’ve been kidnapped.”  Chew on that you controlling prick.The son of a bitch laughed at me. I am not speaking of a small chuckle. No, Augostino Romani let out a belly laugh that induced tears in his eyes.  He cast me a look quickly and averted his gaze back to the road.

“No one would believe you bellisima. I do remember some magazines have called me a playboy.” He accent became thicker the further we sped from his office. It was a melodic sound, not the over inflected Italian accents from the movies, but natural, soothing, like waves of the ocean lapping a sandy beach. I sucked in a huge breath. I have lost it. I am getting lost in his voice. I needed a mental shake. As I looked down at my phone, I see Lena’s text message in capital letters. It simply said “WHAT?”  If I knew Lena, which I do, I know she was pacing up and down trying to figure out how in the world I went from an interview to a personal journalist.  I typed back “Don’t worry, I’m fine. It was the sneakers.”

She typed back a smile face and something that I would say resembled devil horns. “Details required. Be safe.”  I fought back a smile as I slid the phone into my purse.  At least now I could rest easy, knowing that someone knew that this ‘playboy’ was commandeering my time.

He cleared his throat. I didn’t think he was the type of man used to being ignored or not commanding all the attention.  I turned and watched him drive for a moment.  His movements were sure and confident. I looked around and could tell we were outside of DC’s city limits because there were actually lawns in front of the houses we passed.

“Ok, playboy,” I could hear his growl as I let the nickname slip “I was just letting someone know that I was safe.  I wouldn’t want anyone to worry.  Now, can we get back to interviewing?”

“Si.” He gave a small nod of the head and I was back in the driver’s seat. It was the only place that I was comfortable.

“So where are you taking me?” I said.

“To my home in Maryland. It is close enough to commute, but for enough away for my privacy sake.”

“Ok. Any girlfriend’s that might find me riding in a sleek tricked out sports car with you a little objectionable?”

“The last girlfriend I had was Lucy. We dated for a while, but we broke it off about a month ago.” He still said that with a tight lip and there was a hint of a snarl.  Unfortunately I had read the gossip pages on him and Lucy, and I knew they had reportedly been engaged.

“Were you two really engaged?”  I bit my lip. Why did I always seem to stick my foot in my mouth around him?

“Yes.” Ouch, no wonder he was touchy.  One thing I’d learned that day, is that I have a habit of saying the wrong thing.   Although most journalists do.  I could tell by the way the fine hairs on my arms began to stand up, he was eyeing me with an icy glare. I had spent most of that day not talking to him, just sitting back and observing the way that he conducted himself. He was all about business, but whether he kept his tone professional or not, he said a lot more with his body language.  I could tell when there were too many questions about simple tasks when his jaw began to tick. I could tell that he was deep in thought when his eyebrows almost came together. At that moment, well, I know that I personally had ticked him off enough times to know he was angry when his voice dropped to a whisper.  I took a moment to stare out the window and noticed we were pulling up in front of a large estate, no, massive estate. As we roll in through the privacy gates, I noticed that everything was secure. I took note of several cameras positioned around the fences, it appeared to be someone on the roof and if I was not mistaken, there were several bodyguards at the door.  I think I may have been kidnapped by Bruce Wayne.


Chapter Five

“You won’t need a Doberman, I have ten of them.” August chuckled and I was slacked jawed.  He finally managed to answer the question and I was too speechless to give a damn. August preceded me out of the car and came to open my door. He offered his hand to me to help me out.  I took in my surroundings while one of the large men came towards August and launched into an update. August still had my hand nestled in the crook of his arm.  I tried to tune out what the guard was saying but when I heard my apartment’s address being mentioned; I whipped my head at August.

“They will drive back to your apartment tonight and pick up some clothes and things that you think you will need. Do you have a key to give them?” August said, his tone calm, as if this was an everyday occurrence.  Who knows, for him, perhaps it was. I fumbled around with my key in my purse. I snatched the clipboard from the waiting guard, and pulled the pen from behind my ear.  I wrote down instructions of what should be touched and what shouldn’t be touched.  It was still awkward, but with August smiling at me in approval, it was worth the risk.  If he was going to play his role, I was going to play mine.  My thoughts quickly turned to what type of questions I would ask, starting with his childhood and how did his brother become a detective.

Turnabout is fair play in my book and since he started to control various aspects of my life, I was going to get to know various aspects of his, intimately.   As the guard finished his report, he beckoned for two other guards to come to him. He handed them my scrawled list and my keys.  As I looked at the four men, I realized one thing. August was taller than all of them. What was the point of having security when you are taller and broader than the ones supposedly protecting you?  While I was working that thought over in my mind, I felt I was being led to the inside of the house.  When we walked into the foyer, I was so glad that he still had my arm. I would have fainted. The ceilings were high and lit with crystal chandeliers, and what looked like a rendition of the Creation of Adam from the Sistine Chapel. This was too much. He wanted me to live here? I was going to get lost within thirty minutes.

“August?” I said, stopping in the middle of the floor. I needed a moment.

“Overwhelmed?” He said, his voice for once sounding human, husky, not like some caged wounded animal.

“You can say that.  Ok, it has been a long day, and perhaps I can have an expedition tomorrow, but I think I am going on overload. I need dinner.”

“I am sorry, I keep forgetting most people eat dinner well before midnight. Your rooms are down that hall. Beatrice will show you the way.” All of a sudden, a housekeeper clad in a gray uniform materialized. Is that what he means by beck and call; to appear when mentioned like magic? “Beatrice, good evening. Please show Ms. Mason her rooms and then lead her to the dining room. I think a light supper would be good.” Turning to me, he nodded his head and said, “I have a few phone calls to make. I will see you in the dining room.” With a turn, he was gone. His Armani shoes didn’t make a sound as he walked on the tile floor. Beatrice led me down a long hall and to a huge room. She reminded me of a pear with a wig. She was round and her tight curls bounced as she bounced down the hall. Even Beatrice made some noise in her sensible sneakers. They squeaked on the polished marble floor.

“Right this way Ms. Mason.” I couldn’t manage to close my mouth. There was a large four poster bed, made of oak or maybe walnut. I didn’t honestly know, all I could describe was that it was majestic. The fluffy comforter was stripped royal blue and gold.  I couldn’t resist but to fling myself onto it. The bed was soft and squishy. How I could really get a good night sleep in here? My stomach let another rumble. Right, food, and then sleep. I couldn’t help but to take another sweeping view of the room. It seemed as though the room was comprised of oak from ceiling to floor. Something about the room reminded me of August. The desk settled in the corner was an exact replica of the one in his office at Romani Enterprises.  I put down my purse. There wasn’t much I could do until my bags arrived. I noticed that Beatrice was still standing there. I looked at her and just smiled.

“Might as well get this show on the road,” I said as I kicked off my heels. I took my hair up into a hair binder I keep around my wrist, probably out of habit, and walked out. I counted the doors and made sure I knew how to get back. We walked into a large formal dining room with a huge wood table that looked like it could sit at least twenty people.  I saw August speaking rapidly into a phone in a flurry of Italian, pacing back and forth at the head of the table.  The chairs were plush and I walked as close to the pacing August as I dared. A butler, for heaven’s sake, a butler materializes and pulls out the cream and gold high backed chair. I couldn’t believe this. Security guards, butlers, maids, I was definitely not in Kansas anymore. As I sat and the butler disappeared like smoke, I focused on August’s conversation.

“Adriano…” August sighed into the receiver. “Sì farò attenzione.” My Italian was rusty, but I knew he said he would be careful. What did August need to be careful about? All of my senses screamed at me to be on alert. I could only understand certain phrases, but I couldn’t begin to untangle them as I began to officially become a nervous wreck. The hairs on the back of my neck stood up. I sat down, letting my analytical mind take over. If he did all that research on me, he would know that I would know some Italian and French. So he would not be speaking it to hide something from me. At least I didn’t think so.  As I waited for the conversation to end, I tried to assimilate some facts about how I went from being a simple reporter to a personal journalist that may or may not be in danger. I looked around. There were several security cameras in the dining room and who knows how many throughout the rest of the house. Engineers shouldn’t be this paranoid, or maybe August is that paranoid.  I was trying not to overreact. I took deep breaths and stared at him as he sat down, finishing the phone call with a decisive press of the end button. Was he smiling at me?  I looked down at the plate of cheese, bread and grapes.  That is right, Italians eat in courses. It was going to be a long night. There was a white wine bottle at my elbow that all my instincts were telling me not to drink, not yet. Not until I found out what was really going on, then I might need the whole bottle. He took his seat next to me, and picked up one of the small wedges of white cheese. He held it in between his thumb and forefinger, giving the cheese a good squeeze, and then, opening his pink full lips slightly, placing the wedge in his mouth. As he chewed thoughtfully I wondered if he was trying to turn me on purposely or was I just that easily turned on. It had been a long time since, well since anything.  Trying to clamp down on my raging hormones, I looked back at my plate. Taking one deep breath, I didn’t bother by looking up at him as I spoke.

“Ok, I am not going to overreact, and I am not going to pitch a fit. But are you going to tell me what that was all about, or do I need to pry?”

“That was Adriano.” He said and that was all his said. He picked up a grape and popped it into his mouth. He was the most infuriating man I had ever met.

“I know who it was,” As my top lip curled in frustration, I realized I was not going to get information from him if I seemed disturbed.   I smiled sweetly at him, and batted my lashes.  “August, look, you want me to be your personal journalist, but you keep me in the dark about a lot of things and you aren’t all that trusting. Tell me again why you want me to be under you all the time?”  I clamped my mouth shut. It didn’t take an engineer or a genius to figure out how that sounded. I risked looking at him from underneath my lashes, and as I figured, that damn eyebrow was raised again.  This time, not out of anger. He seemed amused. I looked at him fully as I finally got over my temporary embarrassment.

“That sounded really sexy…” His eyes were sparkling with laughter, my hand went for the fork.

“Don’t play with me or my time. What the hell is going on?” I said, pointing the fork at him. I had enough of games, and I was cranky from being hungry.

“If anyone else pointed a fork at me,” he drawled, his voice dipping even lower, if that was possible, and the eyebrow inched just a little higher, “you would be outside by now. But since you are my guest…” He trailed off, eyeing me, wearing me down with his infiltrating gaze.  As I put the fork down, my eyes never left his.  He picked up another piece of cheese and nodded towards my plate.  Ok I was hungry, he knew it, and my stomach knew it. Yet, my brain also knew he was stalling. Yet, what would he be stalling for? Mulling over these new developments, I finally put a wedge of the cheese in my mouth.  The smoky flavor of the cheddar burst on my tongue and I temporarily lost the will to give a damn about Augustino Romani. Why had cheese never tasted so good?  Following the cheese with a few grapes and a few apple slices, my stomach finally stopped protesting As I finished chewing a piece of Italian bread, another course of some steaming fish was laid in front of me.  Typically I was a roast beef on wheat sort of girl, and, if I wanted to get fancy, maybe some store bought soup, but this was magnificent.  August still hadn’t spoken, and kept silent as he worked off the cork to the white wine. He poured my glass half full and did the same to his in languid movements, as if each second was precious.   He set my glass down carefully and swirled the transparent cold liquid around in his glass. As we ate some of the fish, I realized he still hadn’t said one word.   Again the differences in our world showed themselves.  I was used to rowdy conversation, from either my siblings or my co-workers, and not eating in silence.  I sipped a bit of the wine, wishing it was a nice cold beer.  I pushed the plate away and  folded my hands in my lap and glanced at his face.  August was not staring at his food but his blue eyes were trained on me with an intense look.  Staring back, I studied his face. .  His jaw wasn’t ticking and for once, he seemed unsure of himself. The fire normally behind the cobalt eyes was gone, and he looked almost, normal.  For only a mere moment, I felt sorry for him. All of this luxury, and he lived in it alone. He was regarding me with a curious expression on his face, and as an interviewer, I have seen it before. It is that look of wanting to say something but can’t. That expression to me screams band-aid, and it is always best to pull it off swiftly. “Spill it.” I said, tilting my head to the side. “You are very direct. I like that about you. My plan is to catch the leak and I need your help.” I swore he was giving me puppy dog eyes.  What in the world had I gotten myself into, he wasn’t James Bond, and I wasn’t trying to be Halle Berry.  He pouted a bit but then smiled.    He smile was as stunning as his eyes.    I cleared my throat and met his gaze.

“Don’t do the pouting thing; I got a mother who can do it far better than you. Can I know what the plan is, or are you planning on keeping that to yourself?”

“Let’s finish eating first and I will tell you.”  I folded my arms. Who in the hell did he think he was, besides Augostino Romani sexy as hell software engineer? I don’t take orders from anyone except my mother, and I was on vacation from her for a few months.  August began to dig into his fish again and looked at me with a cold glare.  He pointed his fork at my plate and said it again. “Eat.”  He was finishing his meal with gusto and I took one more bite of the fish.  Licking my lips, I grabbed another piece of bread and tore a corner off and popped it into my mouth.   My eyes never faltered from his face as he chewed and swallowed more wine.  I waited until his butler arrived and cleared our dishes.  “Ok, I ate, now talk Augostino.”  I said as I watched the butler disappear behind the swinging doors.

“I would have thought eating would have made you less thorny.” He sighed as he took another sip of his wine, but his eyes were scrutinizing me from behind the rim of the glass. I could see he was in bait and catch mode again. I rolled my eyes.

“Nothing can make me less thorny, especially in all of this” I said as I waved a hand through the air, pointing at the security cameras. “I am a journalist. Everything that you have said so far makes my radar go haywire and I have a million and one questions to ask you.” I got up out of the chair and began to pace, my stocking feet not making a sound on the plush long hair carpet. Who has carpet in their dining room? The fact that I was agitated at him having carpet in a dining room made me realize that I was the one acting like a pouty child.   The thought that I was not behaving like myself pissed me off even more.  I’d always told myself that I wouldn’t let anything change who I was professionally or personally, but August seemed to seep under my skin like nothing else. . I didn’t realize that I had stopped pacing as was staring at the floor until I heard August behind me.

“Fair enough.” He said, slowly, hints of the wine drifted to my noise as I felt the moist air from his lips dance along my neck. I whirled around to face him. Damn he moved like a panther!  “I have a leak as you have heard. I think I know who this leak is.  I need you not to pose as my biographer but as now my mistress.”  I gasped. Oh, I was going to need that drink.  I walked around him and reached for the wine glass and drained it.  My mouth couldn’t keep up with all the things I was thinking.  As I set the glass down, a simple question formed in my brain and the absurdity of what he was proposing made me angry.   No one was going to believe we were a couple and I’d be a laughing stock in the journalism industry.

“How is pretending to be your new arm candy going to help you?” I shouted,  only lowering my voice after I heard the echo of it bouncing back at me. “And didn’t you just break up with someone? And who in the world is going to believe that?” I realized that I just bombarded him with several questions in one sentence and stopped abruptly.  I tend to ask questions when I am nervous, and man, dropping the word ‘mistress’ into an after dinner conversation would have made anyone nervous.

“You have a nose for sniffing things out, you are quite the observer, I’ve noticed that much. As a biographer, there will be certain functions that you cannot get into. Parties, conventions and so on. But, as my lover you can go where I go. Same thing with being my biographer, there are places that you as my biographer can go where my lover cannot.”  He was behind me again, his hands on my shoulders, kneading and massaging my tensed frame.   My body started to unwind under his warm fingers, as his thumbs circled on my neck.

“Are you telling me I am in a win-win situation?” I said trying to not sound as breathless as his massage was making me feel.    Did he really just calm me down with a touch?

“Yes, you are in a win-win situation. And no, you are not risking your life. I will be there to protect you, always. You will still get your story, I will catch the leak, and we will all be happy.”  His mouth was close to my ear, and his whispered toned made me shiver a bit.

“And how long do you think that it will take to catch the leak?”  I swallowed and cleared my throat.  His fingers traced the lines of my collar bone and I felt my heart beating rapidly in my chest.

“Do you have a problem with posing as my mistress for a while? It may take a month it may take longer. Until then, your will be my live-in lover.”  His voice was soft as he rolled the ‘r’ in lover.    Again, his lips were extremely close to my skin, and I felt myself shiver.  I could feel the tip of his nose hovering dangerously close to my neck.  I groaned and tried to put some space between us by stepping out of his embrace.

I do wish he would stop using that lover word. That implies way too much.  Every time he says lover, I get the vision of  him and me entwined in sheets.  I mean I am a female, and how could I not think of sex when this man exuded nothing but raw sensuality. Besides, being celibate for the last five years hadn’t helped much either.

“I don’t know about this. I mean, I know how the press can be. They will start asking me questions, expecting me to know answers to certain things,” I was not about to say they will expect us to kiss and so on.

“All of which I am sure you will be able to answer in time.  Our first outing is tomorrow. There is a charity gala at the Italian embassy. There is a dress for you to wear already in your closet.  Get plenty of sleep because I will need you alert.” August placed his hands on my shoulders and turned me to look at him.   Placing his warm fingers under my chin and lifting it, I allowed myself to regard him as just a man and not the man I’d placed on a pedestal.  He was attractive, but there was more to him and I wanted to get to know what else lied beneath the surface.

He bent down and he was staring at me deep into my eyes. There was a spark of desire there that I am sure I did not imagine.  Oh my god, he wanted me to play his mistress, but I am not sure exactly how much of his look was just role play.

“You will be safe with me. I will be there with you, by your side.” August said in a hushed whisper, and he gave me a small kiss on the forehead. With the kiss and a nod to me, he was gone.  As the flesh of my forehead tingled with a warm sensation of where his lips had been, I thought about his words.  My body may not come to harm being with him, but my libido may not be so safe.

Not So French Vanilla – new eBook by Nevea Lane – Available now!

Dabney had finally done it, she made the perfect vanilla cupcake! The smell was so intoxicating it brought her longtime friend and neighbor Camron knocking at her door. However, what Camron wanted was more than just a taste of her latest baked goodies. He was about to let his bountiful beautiful baker know that what he wanted was not so French Vanilla.

Coming Soon from Nevea Lane – Unexpected (A Paranormal)

It’s funny how the smallest details can get you into a world of trouble. For Dinah Jacobs, it was a small

cat. No problem, she didn’t fear stray cats, especially not as beautiful as the Siamese that was always

waiting for her when she got home. She fed her, gave her a name, and even bought her a flea collar.

That is where things went terribly wrong. The darn cat dashes into her mysterious neighbors home as

she was trying to get the collar around his neck. Trying to get the Siamese out of the neighbors house,

she discovers the cat mislead her. It wasn’t a stray. It belonged to the very dark, very brooding, very

handsome next door neighbor. Galien was more than what he appeared at first glance, but did she

want to stick around t find out what made him so unique? Galien wasn’t going to give her a choice. She

broke into his home, she was about to find out what happens when vampires get unexpected guests.


“Are you going to kill me?” she whispered. Galien was right. She wanted him, but she didn’t want to die for desire. Nothing was worth that.
“You’ve been to France, oui?”
She could only nod.
“Then you know what le petit mort means.”
She nodded again.
“And…?” he said, his fingers tracing a line under her jaw to her earlobe.
“It means the little death, or orgasm,” she said, her voice sounding small, helpless, breathless, and completely in need.
“Then, oui, I’m going to kill you over and over and over again.” His smile was sweet, his tone sincere…
NL_Unexpected - Cover

New Release – If I Could Go

*Peeking around*  Wow, is it empty in here.  *dusting microphone off* Hello?  *echoes*  *Tapping mic*


It has been a while.   I could say, shame on me, but I’m really not ashamed.   Everyone needs to recharge their batteries every once in a while, we are all human, well most of us are.

Which brings me to my point of stopping in.   We are all human, apt to faint, be fickle, get tired, lose our phones, marbles, watch, mind…you name it.  As humans, as much as we gain, we can lose.   Given the emotional time of losing loved ones and letting things go, sometimes we wonder, what are we doing it all for?  Love.  Love, in its many forms, does make the world go round.  Whether it be for love of money, love of yourself, love for others, love for the world… Love does play a part in everything we do.

Moving on to my next point – What would you do for love?  Would you stick around for over a thousand years just for a glimpse of a soul you once knew?   Would you believe your dreams, no matter how absurd they sounded or looked?

I’ve decided to go down that word and examine what two souls would do for love.  This short novella is a starting point to introduce you to my new set of characters,  Marius and Fia.   While this beginning work is short, it is merely just a ‘jump-off’ to the next work which is in progress.

With that being said, how about a buy link? Click the image or go here –


Fia Nyx was exhausted. Not from her job, leading an analysis team in Italy to expand the Roman section at the Smithsonian sounds like it would be exhausting, but it was actually her sleep that was keeping Fia exhausted. The dreams of the sexy male with his blonde hair and blue eyes making her squirm and cry out in passion would be great, if they stayed in her dreams, while she was in bed. Now the dreams were occurring mid conversation. Her sister is begging her to come home, but Fia can’t help to feel there is something more to these waking dreams. What she finds is a lot deeper than sleep deprivation.

New Release Available at
New Release Available at

New Release – Measure for Measure – Only 99 Cents!

New Release – Measure for Measure – Only 99 Cents! Click the book for the link or  click here

What’s a girl to do when faced with three years of jail time or one night with a sensual dominant?  Submit of course.   Isabella Court didn’t think that one night with with her boss, Duke Vincentio would be as bad as going to jail.  What she didn’t plan on was the lust the arrogant mogul ignited in her.  One night, no jail. What’s the worse that could happen?


New BDSM Release
Measure for Measure


New Release! Get Ready To Chase Nickels…


Chasing Nickels Around Dollar Signs








Are you ready for a little treat?  This inexpensive little treat will definitely get you revved and ready.  Are you ready for a little heat to start your summer off just right?

I know, enough with the questions right? (See what I did there *smirk*) The tax season is finally over and we all get a little punch drunk and woozy during those times.  Let’s face it,  working into all hours of the night, your mind tends to run away with you.  You never know what may happen once your brain is fogged.

Take Sasha Nickels for example.  She works hard and well…take a peek ~

The April tax deadline is fast approaching for Sasha Nickels, and the last thing she needs is an unannounced visit from her questionable client Cesar Parisi and his associate Sonny Amato.  Cesar and Sonny are two men who won’t take no for an answer. Obedience is expected.

When they show up unannounced on the busiest tax day of the year, she wants give them both a good piece of her mind.  However, Cesar and Sonny make it known they’ll take a piece of her mind, but they want her body as well…


It was difficult to stand in their menacing presence one at a time, let alone both of them at the same time.  They both stood well over six feet, but Sonny had the advantage by an inch.   The stare down couldn’t last all night.  She moved to the side and pushed her hair behind her ears.  Keep it quick and simple, stick to the points, and don’t think about touching their hair.    Touching their hair was always on her mind, as Sonny’s hair was jet black and Mr. Parisi’s hair was a tussle of blonds and browns.  For the two years of their working relationship, she was more often tempted to touch their hair than their money. Clearing her throat, she motioned to the leather chairs in front of the desk.  She watched as they sat and noticed there wasn’t a briefcase between them.  What the hell is going on?

“So to what do I owe the pleasure of your presence, Mr. Parisi?”
Sasha walked to her desk, sat down, and folded her arms in front of her.
“Come on, Sasha.”  His voice dipped, and her name sounded like a melodic seduction rather than a greeting.  “You’ve known me for years now. Can’t you bring yourself to call me Cesar?”

Not if I want to keep myself from sitting in your lap as if you’re Santa.
“Mr. Parisi, I’m a busy woman.”

“And Mr. Parisi is a busy man.”  Sonny’s voice was as gruff as always.  She cut her gaze to him. Like she didn’t know that.
“Since we are both so busy, why don’t we skip this verbal sparring and get to the point of why you’re here?”   She’d directed her question at Sonny, but it was Cesar who answered.

“You’re amazing.”
That wasn’t what she’d expected.
“Excuse me?”
“You said to drop the verbal sparring and that is exactly what I’m doing.  Sasha, mia cara, you’ve done an amazing job for me for the last few years, and I wanted to show you that I’m more than grateful.”

“Send me a bottle of Chianti and a box of chocolates and we’ll call it even.”  She waved him off with a flick of her wrist and picked up her pencil with the other hand.  Sasha didn’t have time for this. She needed to review returns and try to get at least three hours of sleep tonight.

“You are worth far more than a box of chocolates and some wine,” Sonny said. For once, he didn’t sound ticked off.

She turned to look at him.  In her line of work, as frigid as it may seem, she wasn’t surprised by much.  In her life, being the only child, growing up dirt poor and having barely enough to eat, she could match attitude for attitude, but this bad cop, good cop or whatever these two were doing was unraveling her carefully constructed wall of self-preservation.

“Your eyes are sparking.  Does that mean you are interested, mia cara?”  Sonny’s voice was definitely lethal, and he was using it to his full advantage.  She’d never bothered to wonder if her eyes sparked or not because they were hidden behind her glasses most of the time.   Sasha stared at him a long time before she spoke.
“Interested in what, Sonny?  You haven’t proposed anything for me to be interested in.”

“A proposal would be a bit premature. How about one night together first? We’ll get around to wedding plans later.”

End Excerpt

Want to know how Sasha responds?   Pick it up: Available at the Beautiful Trouble Publishing website ONLY:










NEW RELEASE – Silver Bells and Straps by Nevea Lane

Silver Bells and Straps by Nevea Lane CLICK TO BUY!

Yes, I did it. My first light BDSM tale.   I fear I haven’t been completely honest with you all.  I like kink. I’m not sure if that was a confession or just a ‘just so you know’ announcement.   Shara Azod LLC knows a little something about kink.  I’m pleased to throw my name into their marvelous Whipped Dreams line.    For those of you who know the imprints works, you know that Whipped Dreams center around BDSM or D/s story lines.   I took it one step further.  This time, the heroine is the Domme.

Below is the blurb and a spicy little excerpt to get you wondering.  Click the link, buy the tale, and warm up your holiday season with a bit a sugar, spice and and a whole lot of kink.


Athena Divan had it good; her own company, a premium New York apartment and a secret.   Gerard Bourdain was much the same; his own company, a premium New York apartment, a restless spirit and a secret.  These two had butted heads in the board room, but they were about to find they had a lot more in common when their secrets collide at the Black Tie bondage club.

The only thing is, Athena was Mistress Minerva. She knew who he was, but Gerard was in the dark about her secret identity.   Would she take the opportunity to have a bit of revenge at Gerard’s expense?  Of course.  Yet, could she keep herself in check and not step over the line and jeopardize her identity?

As he stood on the other side of the door, he took a deep breath. This
mistress was supposed to be the best, as the owner kept telling him. A second generation dominatrix. He’d never heard of such a thing. Pushing the heavy
door open, he stepped into the room.
His stomach immediately tightened when his eyes focused on the woman
perched on the throne. She looked like a deity, her shoulders back and her long
legs crossed in a striking pose. Her mouth was pursed, and her burgundy
lipstick looked like a fine wine staining her lips. The black masquerade mask
did little to hide her features. Her high cheekbones stood out in the dim
lighting, but her eyes were the most striking almond color he’d ever seen.
He swallowed hard. She raised her arm and, in a regal movement, turned
her palm upward and curled her fingers forward, beckoning him to her. He
dropped his head and took slow steps toward her. He stopped a mere foot away
from his appointed mistress. For the first time, he was intimidated by a woman.
His mother didn’t intimidate him, and she threw her weight around better than
any man he’d met.
“Well, well, well,” his mistress said in a husky, breathless tone. She
uncrossed her legs and stood. Her heels didn’t make a sound as she walked
toward him across the carpeted floor.
Without pausing, she began to walk around him, looking him up and
down. He didn’t dare move his head to follow her movements, knowing that
would bring him punishment. The leather of her glove felt cool as she laid the
palm of her hand against the small of his back. The simple touch made his cock
“Mmmm. There is nothing I like more than fresh meat.” She smacked his
ass with an echoing slap that stung his flesh even through the leather pants.
Her palm cupped his ass in a soothing motion, and she began to rub his
stinging cheek as if to soothe the sting. The smell of her hung in the air, and it
was all he could think about as he tried to force himself to breathe in through
his nose and out through his mouth.
“What is your name, slave?”

*End Excerpt* 

Well there you have it, what do you think?


REVIEW – Elixir of Wife (Dux Ducis Book 1) by Jeanie Johnson and Jaya Leigh

Elixir of Wife - To Buy, Click the Cover
Elixir of Wife – To Buy, Click the Cover

I was smart with this one.  Anything written by the duo of Johnson and Leigh, well, a woman needs to be prepared.  I had my night all planned out, a bottle of Ecco Domani Moscato, 3 chocolates, each picked out specifically by my mate.  After pouring us each a glass, I gave him the look.  You know, the look that says I’m about to read, please don’t breathe in my direction until I’m done sighing to myself and have put away the reading apparatus and glasses.

Let me tell you something about this book here, if you don’t love chocolate by the end of it, see a therapist; a good chocolate therapist.   Not only do they describe some of the most sin-inducing chocolate truffles in this book that made my mouth water, the things Nerva Imperatores does with this chocolate made me almost jealous.  I say almost because my mate likes to read on these things every once in a while and I’m not about to get paddled.

You see, Nerva Imperatores is a genius, a financial whiz, yet his way with chocolate is what has garnered his fame, and the attention of a choco-a-holic  named Sorpresa Venetia.   Now Sorpresa, have you ever met a character that you wonder, is this me, or perhaps a relative of mine?   There is a line in the book that sums it all up about Sopresa and Nerva:  “Originally, she’d only wanted Nerva for what he could do with cocoa and sugar but now she wanted him for what he could do to her heart: make it damn near beat out of her chest.”

Nerva was convinced he was setting up his Sopresa for someone else.  He’d convinced himself she was the perfect match, just not for him.    However, the way she barged into his life, demanded his chocolate, his time and his ear, he couldn’t help but to fall for her.  Yet, he’d already set in motion a plan that meant  Sopresa wasn’t his.

Jeanie Johnson and Jayha Leigh always make a book worth the time it takes to read it.   The males are always so alpha they make you sweat just reading their names.  The women are strong and fearless and have no problem going for what they want, especially if  what they want is their man.

This book made me want two things:  to find a piece of chocolate that makes me want to do half the things that Nerva did with his chocolate, and to try to patiently wait for the Dux Ducis 2.

To buy the book, click that hot cover above, or take a browse around on: