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MORGAN–The Pixie and the Green Man

Excerpt:

Morgan dropped her bag by the door and slumped wearily into an old, comfortable chair. What had she done? Had she made a date with James? For lunch?

She couldn’t go. Why had she said she would? It was too much, too soon. It would probably always be too soon. After her experiences, she was completely off men. Not that she fancied women, she thought. But men always had ulterior motives. One lunch led to another, and then dinner, and after dinner. Eventually, they all wanted the same thing.

And she was having none of it. When she was younger, she’d dreamed of having a handsome, loving man, who would take care of her. As she grew older, she slowly realized such a man didn’t exist. Not in her world anyway.

Her family was always in strife. Her father and mother argued all the time and when he’d had a pint or ten, her father used them all for punching practice.

One of her uncles always tried to get her alone somewhere, so he could paw at her and maybe get the chance to “break her in.” She’d managed to avoid that, somehow. When she knew he would be at the house, she found something else to do, somewhere else to be. Once she’d finished school, she used work as an excuse and prayed for a way out.

When First Lord Jareth came to Clan Belfort, she’d jumped at the chance to leave. She’d been one of the first to volunteer. Her family had been livid when they’d found out, but there was nothing they could do. She’d made her escape.

Things had been looking up, until Ian found her. And then the whole sordid affair began, which landed her here in the market and afraid to have lunch with James, the handsome young man with green eyes and dimples. If it weren’t for those dimples…

She couldn’t decide if being alone or being in a crowd was worse. She was afraid either way, except with James. For some reason, he made her feel safe. Well, as safe as she ever felt. She couldn’t believe she’d accepted his comforting arm around her in front of the restaurant last night. She’d needed someone to lean on, and he’d cared enough to help.

Maybe lunch, one lunch, would be all right. Maybe he was different.

 

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After writing Jareth, First Lord, I couldn’t get little Morgan out of my head. So quiet and retiring, I felt I had to write her story.

Morgan’s home life was abusive and she would do anything to get away. So when Jareth, First Lord of Clan Brannach came to her clan and demanded the Choosing, she volunteered to leave her clan.

Unfortunately, a few short months after her decision, she is attacked by a young man in her new clan. He’d approached her several times, but she’d refused to go out with him. He wouldn’t take no for an answer.

Saved from certain rape and possibly murder, the man is tried, found guilty, and executed. And Morgan is offered a new job at the local grocery. After her ordeal, added to her past life, she’s off men altogether. They can’t be trusted.

Until James walks into the store and into her life.

He’d been one of the men who came to her rescue and had been biding his time to let her recover. But he’d fallen had over heels in love with her when he’d first seen her.

Now, how can he win her heart if she won’t even walk across the square for a cup of tea?

And if he does win the heart  of this black-haired pixie, can she accept those things about him that make his family unique?

MORGAN–The Pixie and the Green Man. A story within a story. A romance with a happily-ever-after on a distant highland world known as Esperance.

Come with me and Share the Romance…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Haven’t read the rest of the series?

ESPERANCE–The Series

 

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It hadn’t started out that way, but after three books published and at least three more to go, Jareth, First Lord has turned into Esperance, The Series.

JARETH, FIRST LORD Book 1

This is where it all started. Jareth, psychic ruler of his clan, lost his wife in childbirth. With no heir, he must seek a new partner, but after two years, isn’t sure he’s ready.

Viviane, youngest daughter of a neighboring first lord, is a widow, after her husband was killed in a fall. Struggling to survive on her own, she isn’t sure she’ll ever be able to open her heart to love again.

Traveling to the neighboring clan to settle a dispute, Jareth is drawn to the dark-haired beauty in the crowd. Choosing her as part of the spoils, he has no idea she is related to the ruling house.

Viviane is relieved to be chosen. Her other option was to move home, back to the clan seat. And that would never do. She wanted nothing to do with first families. Imagine her dismay when she learns Jareth hopes to make her his First Lady.

VIVIANE, FIRST LADY Book 2

After their marriage, Viviane struggles to control those psychic Talents brought out by the stresses of the previous year. On top of it all, she and Jareth will have to go to her brother’s trial, bringing even more stress to her life.

But if these Talents are frustrating during the day, they do make her evenings with Jareth more exciting…

MORGAN–THE PIXIE AND THE GREEN MAN Book 3

Morgan’s life has not been an easy one. Abused by her father and molested by an uncle, she is glad Jareth came to her clan and asked for volunteers for the Choosing.

But a few short months after moving to Clan Brannach, she is assaulted by one of the young men of the clan. Rescued from what was certainly going to be rape and possibly murder, she is completely off the idea of love and romance.

Until she meets James…

James Ferguson fell in love the first time he saw Morgan–which was when he helped rescue her. Having given her time to recover, he hopes to date her and make her his wife.

But how can he win her heart if she won’t even have a cup of tea with him?

What’s next?

TALENTS–THE STRUGGLE FOR CONTROL

This continues Viviane’s story, and brings in the story of her nephew, Connell, who will be the heir to Clan Belfort.

So go check out Esperance,  world of hopes and dreams, with psychically talented rulers, and women with minds of their own. A place where romance is in the air, from the lush forests to the majestic mountains.

Come share the Romance…

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MR4YOQL/

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I have several works in progress. One is for the Esperance Series–two books down the line from Morgan.  Another is for the Gambler’s Folly Series after Dante’s Angel. And there are a couple stand alones–one finished and ready for editing, and the other still in progress.

So, just for fun, I thought I’d share a little excerpt from the Esperance Series book–Gregor Thayne–Rowan’s Heir.

Enjoy!

Excerpt:

The best way to get Gregor out of his mood was to put him in another one. So she teased and pushed until she got him riled, then took off ahead of him. Knowing him, he would be feeling frisky by now, as well as put out, and that always led to a good time.

Ducking into the trees, she crouched down behind one of the boulders and watched for him. Soon, she saw him examining the path, looking for signs to follow. After a moment’s pause, he turned and followed her into the trees.

Damn, he was good at tracking. She should have taken more care, but since it had been a spur of the moment decision, she hadn’t had the time.

“Come on out, Caela. I know you’re in here. Make it easy for me, make it easy for yourself. If I have to hunt you down, it’ll go harder for you.”

Was that an intentional double-entendre, she wondered? Knowing him and his wit, it was. She was not about to give up yet, right when things were becoming exciting.

He had passed her boulder and was about twenty feet away now. Maybe, if she were careful, she could tiptoe back to the path and continue on toward the stables. Gregor was still facing away from her.

Rising carefully, she lifted her skirts to keep them from rustling in the fallen leaves. Moving slowly, she had nearly made it to the track when a hidden branch rolled out from under her foot. The noise it caused alerted Gregor to her movements.

Recovering her footing, she ran toward the track and nearly made it when she felt his fingers around her arm.

“I think not, my lady,” he said, with those mischievous green eyes laughing down at her. “It’s time I taught you a few things about playing in the woods.”

“And what might that be?”

“What happens when you get caught.”

As they moved back into the trees, he searched for something, but didn’t share his thoughts.

“Here we are. This should be sufficient.”

All Caela saw was a large fallen log.

“Sufficient for what?”

With one quick movement, he spun her around, sat down on the log and brought her face down across his lap.

“Sufficient for spanking your bottom, wench.”

“Wench? How dare you, Gregor Thayne?”

“Oh, I think you’d agree that I dare quite a lot.”

By this time her skirts were raised to her waist and he was chuckling at her predicament. And when things started off this way, they usually ended quite passionately.

He swatted her quite sharply as she struggled to get free.

“I will have you for this, Gregor,” she threatened.

“I’m sure you will, but I’ll have you first.”

She liked the sound of that.

When he’d added enough swats to make his point, and her behind was tender to the touch, he stood up with her. Face to face with Gregor, with her wrists held captive, she was slowly pushed backwards.

“Now you’ll get what’s coming to you,” he said in a low, pleased-with-himself voice.

Her behind met with a tree trunk, before she was pressed back to recline on a tree which leaned out to reach the light. Taken by surprise, she didn’t have time to respond before he’d secured her wrists together with a piece of vine and then bound them over her head.

Her feet barely touched the ground as she was stretched full length along the tree. He was in a mood, wasn’t he?

“Gregor, this is not amusing. Release me at once.”

“On the contrary. It’s most amusing, and I kind of like the look. Especially with your chin raised exposing your throat to me, and your eyes flashing. I’ve learned about the social structure in wolf packs. Tell me, does exposing your throat show submission in your case?”

“Not bloody likely.” She loved sparring with Gregor, physically, verbally, any way at all. She was already aroused and ready for him, but she knew he would take his own sweet time and make her wait.

Suddenly his mouth was on hers, demanding. With her arms framing her face, she couldn’t turn away, though she struggled to make him work for it.

His hand in her hair put an end to that and her willpower was nearly gone anyway.

Once he had her surrender, he stood up and let his eyes feast on her lying there, helpless. As she watched, strong fingers unbuttoned her blouse before one hand slipped around her waist. The other one teased her breast as his mouth came back to claim her lips again.

Skirt now unbuttoned, it and her panties were pulled down to pool around her ankles. His hand moved from around her waist to between her legs and brought her to a tortured state of arousal.

“If I were you, I’d be quiet. Unless you want anyone walking the track to know what’s going on in here.”

“Gregor, I don’t care what your mother says. You are a bastard.”

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Jareth, First Lord. The first book of the Esperance Series. A story about a young ruler, widowed and without an heir.

It is also the story of the woman with whom he falls in love. The daughter of a First Lord, she is spirited with a fiery temper.

 

Excerpt:

The next morning Jareth was up early. Viviane, though, had had enough. Deciding to stay in bed and rest, she was happily on her way back to sleep when someone knocked at the door.

“Viviane? It’s Annie. Lord Jareth wants to know when you’ll be ready to leave.”

“I’m not going Annie. I simply can’t. Give my apologies to the First Lord.”

A few minutes later there was another, stronger knock at the door.

“Viviane, come on. We’re going to be late!”

“No, Jareth, I’m not going to be late. I’m not going. Please extend my apologies to your guests.”

“This is not acceptable Viviane. You knew the requirements beforehand. You will be up and ready in ten minutes.”

Now she was fully awake and mad. How dare he give her orders?

“I beg your pardon, Lord Jareth, but exactly who do you think you are? I did not come here to be ordered about like a servant. I told you I might not manage the entire week and I can’t. Go away!”

“You will be ready in ten minutes or you will go to the Gather just the way you are. A bargain was struck and you will be held to it. Now get ready!”

Fearing he might carry out his threat, Viviane snarled and stormed out of bed. She dressed to an accompaniment of slamming doors and drawers before attacking her hair with the brush.

Jareth was pacing the hallway when she opened her door. “It’s about damned time! There will be no more of this nonsense. You will accompany me at the Gather each day and at least appear like you’re with me willingly. Is that clear?”

“Do stop, Jareth. Nobody’s impressed.”

“I beg your pardon?” he asked in a dangerous tone of voice.

“Yes, okay, fine. You’ve made your point, now shut up. We’re late. Remember?”

If anyone noticed a bit of frost in the air they said nothing, but there did seem to be more space around them than usual. It was nearly halfway through the day before Viviane began to calm down. How had she gotten herself into this mess?

 

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Ready for an excerpt? Dante’s Angel is the second book from Gambler’s Folly. Damiano and Karianna have gone back to Earth for their big family wedding, taking their closest friends with them.

Dante was born on Gambler’s Folly and has never been off-planet. And as the youngest of the group, he has a few issues. He doesn’t have a girlfriend and has trouble meeting women. Though he’s been told he could be Damiano’s brother, he lacks all the things Damiano has, that he thinks hold the key to his relationship problem.

Money, family, and his soul-mate.

Haven’t read Gambler’s Folly yet?

http://amzn.com/1627405844

http://www.bookstrand.com/gamblers-folly

 

Dante’s Angel Excerpt:

“I’m sure you were worried about finding a gown on such short notice,” she told Karianna. “I would have been a wreck in your place. But I do believe we’ve captured your spirit and personality in the one we bought.”

“Are you purposely irritating me, Angela? You know I can’t see the gown until we are at the wedding, unlike everyone else in the house. Don’t make me pry the details out of you,” Damiano threatened.

“What makes you think you’d get any details? You should know me better than that. And you’d also have to deal with your mate.”

“Women. They will find a way to gang up on you every time.”

Dante tried to concentrate on his dinner, until Damiano added, “Remember that, Dante, when you’re considering a mate. Not only will her family stand up for her, all the women in your family will as well.”

He saw the smile behind the complaint and started to answer. But one look over at Karianna and Angela made him tongue-tied. Anything he said would be spun into something else, so he nodded and went back to eating.

“Nothing to say, Dante?” Karianna asked.

“Nothing.”

“Cat got your tongue?” Angela asked. The lilting, musical tones of her voice drew him like a siren’s song.

The challenge issued with the remark came from behind those beautiful eyes, the color of tiger’s-eye, framed by long, thick lashes, which she fluttered at him.

While her wit wasn’t necessarily at odds with her beauty, the two in conjunction did hamper his thought processes. While his mind dithered, his mouth spoke.

“Signorina, when I play with kittens, it is not my tongue which is in danger.”

What had come out of his mouth? He suddenly wanted to disappear from the face of the planet and he didn’t care where he emerged. She sat with her eyes wide and her mouth open, apparently shocked at his answer.

The table erupted with laughter, as the two of them locked gazes. In a moment, she dropped her eyes, tossed her thick tresses over her shoulder and said, “I don’t believe we’ve met. And I’m not sure we should.”

“I see. It’s fine for you to wound a stranger, but not for him to defend himself. I am Dante Bonfiglio, of Speranza on Gambler’s Folly. My family was originally from Sicilia, though this is the first time I have been to Earth. Now we can fence as friends, rather than as strangers.”

Again, she seemed to search for a comeback and simply stared at him. Time to get back to dinner, perhaps. With a nod in her direction he turned back to his plate.

“Dante! It is a first. I can’t remember the last time anyone left Angela speechless,” Damiano exclaimed. “Well done.”

“Speechless? I am not speechless, but I don’t see any point in encouraging such an attitude. Rude!”

“Angela mia,” Signora Leone said, still chuckling. “You were speechless and, if rudeness were a sin, you would be as guilty as Dante. Maybe you’ve finally met your match.”

“I don’t think so, zia Caterina. Never would I be associated with a man as arrogant as he is.”

“You mean like you and the rest of your family?” Damiano added.

“I am not arrogant.”

“Oh? Maybe you are just rude.”

“Damiano, when it comes to rude and arrogant, you take first place.”

“Then you are a close second, cugina. Perhaps Dante is the man to take you in hand.”

“Not in this lifetime.”

How had he managed to get involved in this old family feud? And how had he let his mouth get out of control? He was normally shy, not adding much to conversations. One remark without thinking and he was embroiled in a family dispute, which, though friendly, was a little closer to the family Leone than he cared to be.

“Dante, since the brat won’t introduce herself,” Damiano said, “this is my cousin, Angela diGatti, from my mother’s side.”

Piacere, signorina,” Dante replied. “Pleased to meet you, miss.”

“Humph…” was all she said.

“And now who is being rude?” Signora Leone asked. “Maybe this is why you have no boyfriend.”

“Who needs a boyfriend?” the young woman snapped in answer.

“Who is always wishing someone would ask her out in the evening?” her aunt countered.

“Fine. Think what you will.”

“Well, there’s nothing like a spat to get a relationship off to a good start,” the signora said with a smile. She reached for the olive oil to season her pasta.

“No!” he and Angela said together, looking daggers across the table. Once again the dining room erupted with mirth.

“This should make for interesting times,” Damiano said, wiping tears from his face. “She reminds me a little of you, cara, when we first met. As I recall, you spit in my face—not once, but twice.”

“That’s right,” Marco said. “I remember the evening. Such a little hellcat you are when you’re angry, Signora.”

“You might remember that before you comment further,” Karianna said with an evil smile.

Dante locked himself in his own world and finished his dinner, wishing the evening could begin again. He had wanted to meet this dark-haired angel when he’d first seen her. But now he wasn’t sure whether she was an angel or a she-devil. The attraction remained, however. How would one go about taming her?

“Dante,” someone called from across the entry after dinner.

“Yes, Damiano?”

“I take it you’re interested in Angela.”

“I had hoped to meet her. I saw her when the ladies returned yesterday. I hope I didn’t offend.”

“Offend? Oh, no. Angela is quite a handful. We’ve been waiting for someone who was up for the challenge for a long time.”

“Sir, I don’t want to intrude where I’m not invited.”

“If you’re waiting for an invitation from Angela, you’ll grow old and gray. Sometimes a man has to take charge and see where it leads.”

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Black and whiteBesides Dante’s Angel, of course.

The book I have in queue after this is a stand-alone, a United States from a different timeline, where it has a different name and culture. A timeline where the internal combustion engine hasn’t been discovered yet and France had a much greater influence.

This version of America is divided into kingdoms rather than states, each autonomous and under the rule of barons, earls and dukes.

Enter Anne-Marie. Born into a lower class family, she dreams of one day wearing the silks and pearls of the high born women. Frustrated with her lot in life, she runs away, only to discover something much worse.

Until Richard enters the scene. Richard comes from a long aristocratic line of merchant marines. He owns LeMarnier Shipping on the west coast and is the Master of the Fleet over his ships.

He’s also the most eligible bachelor on the Cote d’Or, and Anne-Marie sets her cap on him to be her next meal ticket. Which seems to work out well for her, until–

–she sees a way to go home again and gloat over those who had tried to keep her from rising in the world.

And where she makes her biggest mistake.

Watch for Master of the Fleet, under my pen name Sultonna Nadine, here or at my Facebook page, Meleigh’s Creations.

as-often-as-possilbe

 

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Mel and Gambler's FollyWhen I wrote Gambler’s Folly, I had no idea I was writing the first book in a  five book series. Why do I do this to myself? (sigh)

Dante’s Angel will be Book 2 from Gambler’s Folly. Mentioned a few times in Gambler’s Folly, Dante works with Damiano and is the youngest member of his team. Tall, with a Mediterranean look, he is generally happy with his life.

But when Dam and Kari return to Earth for a big church wedding, Dante is invited to come be in the wedding, along with Paulo and Marco. How could he refuse?

He’s never been off Gambler’s Folly and he has to admit he’s a little jealous of Damiano’s luck in finding a mate. What would it be like, he wondered, to find his soul mate, the one woman who was his perfect complement?

Little does he know how soon this question will be answered, in the form of Damiano’s cousin, Angela. Fiery tempered, with dark hair and amber eyes, Dante is immediately drawn to her, in spite of her wicked tongue.

Watch for Dante’s Angel, right here or at my Facebook page for Gambler’s Folly.

For other books or works in progress, check out Meleigh’s Creations!

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