Mammoth Book of Hot Romance

Due out in July, I believe… my contribution is a Grimm short… *G* It’s the story of how Greta and Rip first meet.

From the publisher’s website…

Twenty-five unashamedly modern romances with a strong erotic element aimed at the women’s market. Twenty-five unashamedly modern short romances which don’t shy away at the bedroom door from the crème de la crème of contemporary romance writers, including Lilith Saintcrow, Louisa Burton, Anna Windsor, Susan Sizemore, Michelle M. Pillow, Rebecca York, Charlotte Stein, Shiloh Walker, Victoria Janssen, Saskia Walker and Cathy Clamp.

This is writing which is more direct, less euphemistic, and frankly accepting of sexuality – fiercely hot stories of flesh and blood and feelings which will entrance and beguile romance readers.

Short excerpt…and I do mean short, because the story isn’t long…

The air was thick with smoke, ash, and sulfur.  Death, too.  Mustn’t forget the stink of death.

The man with her lay still and silent, despite the pain she knew he must feel.  His eyes, dark and brooding, stared into hers.  “Get the hell out of here, Gretel.  Now.  The ceiling is going to collapse.”

His blood slicked her hands as she pressed them against the gaping wound on his side.  “I’m not leaving you here and it’s not like you can’t walk out of here alone.  I’ll thank you not to call me Gretel, Rip.  The name is Greta.”

She hadn’t gone by that name for more than three hundred years.

Gretel… to some, the name evoked memories of breadcrumbs, witches, gingerbread houses. But for her, it brought nothing but dark, painful memories. They tried to rise up, tried to swamp her, as they always did in times of despair.

She battled them back. She had no time for them now. The scent of blood, hot and metallic, filled her head. He was losing too much blood, and healing far too slow.

“Fool woman.  Are you insane?” Rip reached up and shoved at her shoulder.  It was a sign of his weakened state that he couldn’t budge her.  “Get out of here.”

“And leave you to burn to death?  I think not.”

“I will not burn to death,” he said.  “We can’t burn to death.”

“Are you so sure of that?” she asked, cocking a brow.  She shook her head.  “I don’t want to test the theory.   Besides, whether we heal or not—burns hurt. Come on now…if you want me out, I’ll leave.  But only if you’re with me.  I’m not leaving you here to roast.”

Those dark brown eyes flashed.  Then he sighed.   “Fine.  You’ll have to help me up.  I cannot walk out on my own.”

She had already figured that much out on her own.   It took some doing, getting him to his feet, but once they’d managed, she was just the right height to wedge her shoulder against his body, supporting his weight. They’d managed to make it exactly five steps when she heard an ominous crack.

“Oh, no.”

Spinning toward the nearest window, she braced Rip’s weight with hers and lunged.

When she’d come into this new existence, it had come with some rather extraordinary abilities…she didn’t age, she never fell ill, and she had the strength to lift a horse.

Too bad she couldn’t truly fly.  There were rumors that some of her kind could.  It was a shame she wasn’t one of them.

But she could pray.  As she propelled herself and Rip through a glass window into the freezing waters of the Boston Harbor, she prayed very, very hard.

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