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Every passion has its price . . .
Journalist Sophie Ryder has been following Emery Lockwood’s story since she was a little girl. There has always been something in his haunted eyes that she couldn’t resist and now, when she’s certain he holds the key to solving a string of kidnappings, she’ll do anything to speak to him. Even if it means venturing deep into the seductive world of the Gilded Cuff, a luxurious BDSM club on Long Island’s Gold Coast and Emery’s personal playground.
From the moment Sophie enters his shadowy, sensual domain, Emery Lockwood knows this tantalizing new little sub was meant to belong to him. However, Sophie wants more from Emery than just pleasure . . . she wants his past. And that is something he isn’t willing to give—no matter who is asking. But every moment he spends with Sophie, Emery feels his control slipping and he knows it’s only a matter of time before he surrenders to her heart, body, and soul.
He slid his hands up to her wrists then connected his palms to hers. She responded, lacing her fingers through his, squeezing gently. His throat tightened and his eyes burned.
The simple connection—so sweet, so innocent—bound him to her, like a shimmering web spun between them, unbreakable and inescapable. He lifted his head a few inches, needing to see her eyes.
They were luminous, her lashes at half-mast. He was lost. A world of unimaginable beauty existed in the crescent silver of her dreamy gaze. He felt like a man from the ancient world, gazing north at the distant star Polaris, finding his way home by the loyal light that shone there. She saw him, every part of her, her light penetrating the shadows stretching out from his soul. He was open, laid bare before her, a man prostrate before a goddess.
Completely and totally vulnerable.
A tremble racked his shoulders, his muscles clenching and tensing. Then pleasure swept through him. He was in control of this luscious, precious woman. He could take her, give her such ecstasy she’d never recover.
Sophie licked her lips, her breath slightly uneven.
“You have to stop doing that,” she whispered in all seriousness, her nose wrinkling just a little.
He cocked a brow. “Doing what?”
“Kissing me like that.”
“You don’t like the way I kiss?” Her body told him otherwise as he shifted above her, the movement pressing his groin into hers. She raised her hips, seeking him, but the sheet and their clothes kept them worlds apart.
“I like it too much. That’s the problem.”
He rolled his hips again, reveling in the little hiss of frustration she made.
“What else do you like too much?” He dropped his head to her neck and nibbled on the underside of her throat. She shook slightly, her pulse leaping beneath his tongue. She was incredibly responsive and her inexperience made her reactions raw and pure. It was perfect. She was perfect.
“That. That’s definitely too good.” Her response was barely more than a breathless rush of words.
“Good. My sub has pleased me with her honest responses. You’ve earned a reward.” He eased off her and lay down beside her on the bed.
Sophie’s hands fluttered to her wrists, making contact with the gold cuffs.
“What are these?”
Sophie’s lips twitched, even as she narrowed her eyes. “Yeah, I can see that. Why’d you put them on me?”
He propped himself up on one elbow and drew a finger along the sensitive skin of her inner right wrist by the cuff.
“It’s part of our bargain. The cuffs remind you that you are mine.”
“Okay, so what’s my reward for allowing this?”
“You didn’t allow it, Sophie. You surrendered to it. Never think being a submissive is about allowing your dom to do something. You surrender. You give me your power.” Emery cupped her face and held her gaze, forcing her to confront his domination and accept it.
Her eyes—still wild, still free—darkened like a waning moon. “I surrender.”
Lauren Smith is an attorney by day, author by night, who pens adventurous and edgy romance stories by the light of her smart phone flashlight app. She’s a native Oklahoman who lives with her three pets: a feisty chinchilla, sophisticated cat and dapper little schnauzer. She’s won multiple awards in several romance subgenres including being an Amazon.com Breakthrough Novel Award Quarter-Finalist and a Semi-Finalist for the Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley Award. Lauren loves hearing from readers and can be reached through her website www.laurensmithbooks.com.
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