Tag Archives: Wild on the Rocks

Wild for All of YOU!

29 May

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

I am, Lady Smutters. I am absolutely wild for you–and so grateful for all your support during our Wild Week here on Lady Smut when we celebrated the nomination of my novel, Wild on the Rocks, for the prestigious RONE award by InD’Tale Magazine. Truly, you make me giddy with grateful glee.

While I do not yet have the results of the contest, I’m happy to report that Wild on the Rocks made a stunning return to the Top 100 Kindle World Romance rankings holding steady in the 50s for the last two weeks, more than a year after first being published! That’s amazing! I’m so grateful for all your support and I hope everyone who took a wild chance on Quinn and Jasper enjoyed their sexy, emotional ride.

Wild on the Rocks is still on sale for $.99, so if you haven’t snagged a hot copy of this sizzling romantic suspense, now is a great time!

“Her taste was narcotic. His mind fogged over and the burn in his chest exploded as he drank deep. Somewhere along the way that day, she’d indulged in a shot of rum. He licked the spicy flavor from her lips and dived deeper.” From Wild on the Rocks.

You know what else is sexy? Service to our country. I know, I know, it sounds formulaic and, let’s face it, potentially insincere. But the truth is that committing your life to something greater than yourself is the sexiest thing a man (or woman) can do. And it’s important that, each year, we take the time to remember those nameless and faceless heroes. After all, they’re not nameless and faceless to everyone.

The hero of Wild on the Rocks, Jasper, is a Navy SEAL, and one of the sexiest things about him is his commitment to that job, that calling, that has shaped his life in many ways. I write heroes like him because I am so in awe of people who have the courage to put their lives on the line for our nation and our people. I believe that says something amazing about the character of such people, right off the bat.

Much as I would like it to be otherwise, Jasper is, alas, a fictional character. But there are many real-life men (and women) who have followed that call and given their lives in service to our nation. They didn’t first ask to know what were our politics or who we voted for or where we stood on national healthcare. They went where they were told and did extraordinary work that, in many cases, cost them their lives.

Today, on Memorial Day, we remember those sacrifices. We honor those men and woman who gave their all so that I can maintain the freedom to do things like, say, post sexy things on a website and not go to jail for doing it–and so you can enjoy those sexy things too.

Follow Lady Smut to get all the sexy by signing up for our newsletter and joining us at the Lady Smut Speakeasy on Facebook.

Writer, singer, editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities straight is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense. Her debut romantic suspense novel, WILD ON THE ROCKS, has been nominated for InD’Tale Magazine’s prestigious RONE award! Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on various social media via @kierstenkrum.

Click on image to buy!

 

 

Wild Excerpt for Wild Week

18 May

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

Hope all you readers have been enjoying Wild Week here at Lady Smut. Whether it’s Alexa Day’s Praise of the Wild Man or Elizabeth Shore hunting for ethical porn, it’s a wild time day by day to celebrate of the nomination of my novel, Wild on the Rocks, for InD’Tale’s Magazine‘s prestigious RONE award in the Suspense/Thriller: Short category. Voting goes all week, and I’d love it if you’d head on over and show some support for Wild on the Rocks, which is now on sale for $.99 exclusively from Amazon!

Vote today!

Wanna know what you’re getting into? Keep reading to see how, a year after their divorce, Jasper and Quinn find each other again in the most unlikely of places. Of all the joints in the world…

Enjoy this excerpt from Wild on the Rocks!

 

 

Casa Blanca, Barefoot Bay, Florida.

“Toldja. Beaches, babes, and booze. The unholy trifecta. Praise sweet baby Jesus.”
Twist’s voice sounded through Jasper’s ear pierce as he scanned the patio area where the rehearsal dinner
cocktail hour was under full swing.
He had to admit that, for once, Twist had got it right.
The Thornquist wedding—or the Thorny Wedding as the security team had taken to calling it—was as
opulent as advertised. Jasper stopped trying to count the number of recognizable faces from notable Washington
families after the first hour. Not that he knew a lot of them on sight. Twist had a better take on the Who’s Who,
given he came from some seriously old money, a secret he kept close and actively hid from their team.
“There’s definitely enough booze,” Jasper agreed. “We’ll be fishing women in formal wear out of the
pool before the bride gets down the aisle.”
“Ah, the wet gown contests. Nothin’ like a dirty debutante.” He sighed with such exaggeration, Jasper
fancied he felt an actual breeze. “Sometimes, at night, I can still hear the screams…of pleasure.”
He absolutely would not smile at Twist’s ridiculousness. “We’ve been here twenty-four hours and your
degenerate side is already at full throttle.”
“Brother, it’s my best side.”
“How ’bout we try to be professionals for a while. Did you tag the congressman’s daughter?”
“Your four o’clock. She’s on her third drink and laughing with the bartender.”
“Spectacular. That’s what we need: a horny bartender.”
“The bartender is a woman, and if she’s horny for the congressman’s daughter, then I’m moving in for a
ringside seat. Shee-it, she is hawt.”
At the mention of a female bartender, Jasper’s head instantly filled with the image of Quinn, her whole
body shaking with laughter at something stupid he’d said before she leaned her elbows on the bar to get closer to
him as if even the air between them was too much distance to bear.
Until she’d run out on him six months later while he was OUTCONUS and put all the distance of the
world between them for good.
Annoyed, he shook off the memory like he longed to shake off the woman. That’s why he was here, right?
To exorcise the taste and feel and haunting memories of his wife on a willing woman.
Ex-wife.
A short-term, holiday affair was the perfect way to end the self-enforced abstinence he’d endured since
his divorce. Jasper was normally careful who he fucked, his career and his family history enough that he didn’t
treat sex as casual even when having casual sex. The one time he’d taken a chance on a wild lover, she’d
quickly become his wife and soon after broken his heart but good.
This temporary fantasy away from his shattered life was the perfect place to learn from his mistakes. And
make a few new, short-term ones.
“Was it ‘hot’ or ‘horny’ where we lost you, Queen?”
Twist’s voice held more than a thread of humor in it. If he made one comment over coms about Jasper
being hard up, best friend or not, he was going to kill him.
“Sit rep,” he snapped.
“You’re not CO on this op,” Twist reminded him with no small amount of glee. “Man, you should see this
bartender.”
Jasper rolled his eyes behind his aviator shades. “We’re on a job, Twist. Not on vacation or the prowl.”
“We’re on a job on vacation, Queen. And I take my wingman duties seriously for both. Relax. You can
count on me to Set. You. Up.”
“I’ll relax when you stop yapping in my ear while I’m getting paid to look after people who could buy or
sell small countries with their pocket change.”
“You better have more than change in your pocket, brother. Not kidding, Queen. You need to come over
here and check her out. She is smokin’ hot.”
“Happy as I am to hear you appreciate the staff, maybe you could spare the rest of us the play by play,
Sisti.”
Luke McBain’s terse voice made Jasper grimace. Thanks to Twist, he was getting chastised over coms.
Soon as they were off duty, he was gonna kick Twist’s ass.
“I could do for a little play by play,” one of the other guards admitted. “These political fuckers are boring
as hell.”
“These political fuckers are our well-paying clients,” McBain reminded everyone. “Try not to disrespect
them to their faces.” A series of “yes, sirs” flooded the com line. “Rehearsal’s over. We’re headed back to the
resort.”
Along with five of his guys, McBain was down on the beach guarding the principals—bride, groom,
attendants, and parents—while the rest of them babysat everyone not in the wedding party. That McBain’s wife
and her wedding planning partners were on the beach probably had a lot to do with his hands on approach at that
vector. “Queen, report.”
“Guests are bugging out from the patio, moving into the dining room. Got ten lingering.”
“Hustle them along. I want everyone under roof in five. Rocco, Johnny, and Marlowe, you three are in
Junonia’s main room covering the dinner. It’s a sit down, so stay out of the way, but remain visible. The rest of
you patrol the perimeter. Sisti, meet up with Queen on the patio. The two of you take position inside the
restaurant at the bar.”
“Sure you want Twist close to the hot bartender?” Jasper asked.
“I’ve seen the woman. If he hits on her, I’ll want a ringside seat. I could use a good laugh today.”
Jasper wasn’t the only man chuckling over the channel at that one.
He moved from his position at the back corner of the patio from which he could see all the way down to
the beach. Table by table, he gently urged people into the restaurant proper, waiting as the women gathered the
whatnot women everywhere seemed to cart around with them no matter the occasion. His go bag had less to it
than some of these women’s purses.
He felt Twist at his six as he helped an octogenarian to her feet and transferred her surprisingly strong
grip to the arm of a waiter. The old dame patted his ass before shuffling off.
“Please tell me you’re not that hard up,” Twist begged, and Jasper heard him in stereo; at his back and
again through the coms.
Damn it.
“Fuck off,” he muttered.
“Oh ho!” Twist chortled with an elbow to Jasper’s gut. “Queen’s losing his cool! Is the world ending?!”
“Keep it up and yours can be.”
Twist snorted, and Jasper would’ve been happier to see his friend up to his old tricks if only he wasn’t
the target.
“I can do you better than a biddy,” Twist promised.
“For the love of my sanity, don’t help me.”
“Gotta look out for my boy.”
“Try doing that by not discussing my sex life on open coms.”
“What sex life? You haven’t gotten laid in months.”
“You know wingman and stalker mean two different things, right?”
“Rumor has it, you’ve got the bluest balls on the team for a man without a pregnant wife or girlfriend. The
boys have bets on how long it’ll take you to nail someone this weekend.”
“I’ll take that action,” Ryan, on the perimeter, piped in.
“Me too,” added Rocco from inside the restaurant.
“Done,” Twist confirmed. “We’ll settle up after the dinner.”
“I’m not hitting on the bartender,” Jasper vowed. “Leave me out of this little clique.”
Twist slapped a consoling hand on Jasper’s shoulder. “Ladies like it when you know how to find that
part.”
Laughter rang on the coms again while Jasper shook his head. “I can’t believe this shit,” he muttered.
“Believe it. Consider Operation King Me underway.”
Jasper’s gaze hit on McBain, who waited for them at the patio door to the restaurant. “Shut it,” he ordered
even though he knew McBain already heard Twist’s nonsense in his ear.
“When Nick gave me your names, I had no idea we’d be getting security and a show,” McBain gibed.
Jasper bit back a grimace. McBain eyed Twist with a peculiar gleam that made Jasper uneasy. “You know, don’t
you?”
That nagging sense of trouble that had been prodding the base of Jasper’s skull all day finally burst.
“What did you do?”
But Twist looked equally confused. “Swear Roy, I have no idea what he’s on about.”
Boss or not, Jasper raised a brow at McBain in silent demand. He jerked his head in a “follow me”
motion and led the way from the patio into the restaurant’s bar.
“I thought it was coincidence or a joke. But my guys only finalized her background check this morning.”
Her? Alarm snaked up Jasper’s spine. Oh, hell no.
“They gave me the final report this morning,” McBain continued. “Not hard to see you share the same last
name.” He gestured toward the bar where a woman worked to fill cocktail orders. “Don’t suppose she’s your
cousin?”
Jasper watched her move, the dance of her motions unchanged from a year before, a sinuous weave that
only hinted at the flexibility she’d brought to their bed. He’d told her once he’d never seen anyone make pouring
a glass of wine look so sexy.
This was still true.
Her dark-brown hair hung past her shoulders now to the middle of her back, long layers that fell forward
to brush her sharp cheekbone when she bent over the bar to serve a drink. He knew how those strands felt when
gripped in his hands, or scraping down his belly as her wide, lush mouth mapped its way down his body to her
target.
She wore the standard server’s uniform of white top and black bottoms, but her collared, tuxedo shirt was
fitted to her impressive rack, emphasized by the two buttons she left undone to show the tempting gulley in her
cleavage. The shirt nipped in at her waist and what little of her black trousers he could see clung to her hips. A
long pearl necklace was twisted into a knot to dangle down her front and Jasper knew, he knew, she’d be
wearing her motorcycle boots, even to this kind of wedding. When she stretched for a bottle off the top shelf, the
banner of skin left bare at her midriff came into view and Jasper proceeded to completely lose his shit.
“You already know she’s not my cousin,” he snarled while rage flooded his body and instant arousal made
him hard as a spike. “She’s my wife.”

* * *

Nettie’s tray clattered onto the bar. “Holy shit,” she gasped, eyes fixed on the restaurant’s entrance. “Is it
Christmas already?”
Quinn glanced over her shoulder as a trio of men crossed the threshold. The last rays of sun shined
through the door behind them, blinding her and making the men little more than shadows. Large shadows with
broad shoulders.
Hoo. Shah.
She shielded her eyes and turned back to the blender. “We should send God a fruit basket.”
“Full of gold.” Nettie nodded toward the man on the end. “That’s Luke McBain. He does the resort’s
security. Very married to one of the wedding planners.”
“So looky, but no touchy.”
Nettie grinned. “Exactly.”
Quinn checked the men out again from the corner of her eye. All three wore black collared shirts tucked
into belted black trousers and topped with aviator glasses they removed almost simultaneously as they came
fully into the bar and approached the women. As classic a uniform for their job as her black and white get-up
was for hers. Standing nearly at the same six-foot plus heights—though the one on the opposite end from McBain
was an inch or two shorter—they were all armed, two with weapons in hip holsters while the guy in the center
sported a shoulder rig.
To Quinn’s mind, shoulder rigs were the sexy, Mad Men version of gun holsters. In a good way. Intensely
masculine but minus the infuriating sexism. So her eyes lingered on that man, skimming over his wide, muscular
chest framed within the holster’s leather strips while she absently noted he alone of the three had his sleeves
rolled up to the elbow. His thick throat rippled as she watched and sharp hunger spiked deep in Quinn’s belly,
the likes of which she hadn’t felt in more than a year. What looked like two days’ worth of scruff covered his
scarred chin, surrounding lips she’d bet were full and a shy short of too fleshy when not drawn into their current
tight line. Coasting past raised cheek bones, the hair on the back of Quinn’s neck lifted and her nipples
contracted into painful points as her avaricious gaze met eyes she already knew were a stunning golden hazel
when not darkened with swelling rage that made his pupil expand until the color was a mere glowing rim.
“Can you imagine having that in your bed every night?” Nettie said.
“I can, actually.” Quinn replied on little more than an exhale. The bottle of wine in her hands trembled.
She set it down on the bar with extreme care and deliberately laid her hands on either side of it before looking
up into the breathtaking, hard-set face of her husband.
Ex-husband.
“Fuck, Roy, but you can pick ’em,” the third man said as he settled onto a stool, seemingly oblivious to the
heaving tension.
Quinn ignored him. She knew better than to look away from the seething powder keg that was Jasper.
“You look like a recruitment poster for Badasses ’R Us.”
He stepped toward the bar as though seconds from yanking her over it. “You look like you’re on your way
to try out for the Coyote Ugly sequel.”
His friend split a grin between them. “Okay, now I believe she’s your wife.”
Ex-wife,” Quinn and Jasper snapped simultaneously, which made the man crack up.
“Cut it out, Twist,” Jasper growled.
This was Twist? She risked taking her eyes off Jasper, fascinated to finally meet his closest friend, though
it escaped her why it could possibly mattered after all this time.
Twist’s grin didn’t falter, but it didn’t reach his eyes, either, and the frank animosity there scorched her
skin.
Okay by her. Not like she was trying to make friends.
“Luke McBain.” The other man introduced himself with a warm smile. She tore her eyes from Twist and
reflexively accepted his proffered hand.
“Quinn McQueen,” she replied without thinking and immediately regretted it when Jasper’s entire torso
recoiled.
The tailored shirt rippled over his muscled chest, mesmerizing Quinn so that Jasper startled her when he
leaned those bare, cut forearms on the bar and got right back in her space.
Holy crap, arm porn. She was in no way prepared for her ex-husband’s delectable arm porn.
He glared at her hand still caught in McBain’s until she tugged it free. “Come again?” The sibilant
whisper coasted over her skin. Quinn caught her breath.
Even though his arrival right now, right here, and all that might mean scared the holy shit outta her, even
after all the bone-crushing, lonely days and weeks she’d spent without him, even now, that deep rumble of his
voice raised goose bumps on her arms.
“Jasp,” she whispered with absolutely no idea what to say beyond that or how to justify being Quinn
McQueen again without telling him that simply having his name was a comfort when she felt more lost than ever
before in her life.
His eyes flared with heat. They were close enough now for Quinn to see that ribbon of green gold around
his pupil glow bright. She locked her knees and clutched her hands together beneath the edge of the bar to keep
from grabbing him.
“You’re using my name again? Since when?”
“About a week ago,” she admitted, her voice small.
“For hell’s sake, why?”
Because I’m on the run from the Russian mob and the only place I’ve ever felt safe was with you.
Yeah, like either of them was prepared to detonate that cans of worms.
She forced herself to shrug. “I like the cadence.”
His hands spread wide on the wood. She half expected him to vault right over the bar. “You like the
cadence?” he hollered back, practically in her face.
She huffed out a breath. “It’s not like I expected you to find out about it! What are you doing here
anyway?”
He tossed an incredulous glance at McBain as though the answer were obvious. And to be fair, it kinda
was. “Searching for buried treasure.”
Despite his dry tone, Quinn’s eyes went wide at the thought of such an adventure. “Really?” she breathed.
“Jesus, no. I’m working security for the wedding.” He shook his head with familiar exasperation. “Christ,
you look ready to abandon everything to go buy shovels and rent a trawler.”
“Ah, is this gonna be a problem?” McBain asked.
Slowly, Jasper eased back from the bar. “That remains to be seen.” Quinn could see he was already
locking himself down, pulling those pesky emotions back under his control. He’d always been able to get over
her so easily when she’d barely been able to let him walk out of a room without her.
Guess nothing had changed on that front.
“What are you doing here, Quinn?”
Irritation quickly replaced her shock, and Quinn reclaimed her attitude along with it. “Uh, working.
Obviously.”
“And I’ve no doubt my wife would appreciate it if your impending domestic didn’t upset her high-society
wedding,” McBain warned without heat.
Quinn zoned back in on the unfinished tab before her. “Shit. Nettie, I’m sorry. Let me get you sorted.”
The waitress eyed her with rampant speculation. Quinn expected she and Jasper would be tasty fresh meat
for the locals when this got out. Say in five minutes. Or however long it took Nettie to speed dial the whole
world as she knew it.
Charity would have a cow not to have had first dibs.
“Don’t worry about it, hon,” Nettie reassured her, but Quinn was already dumping the trio of cocktails.
“These margaritas have settled. Take the wine out while I whip up a fresh batch.” Running the blender
would hold off Jasper’s impending interrogation, too, maybe long enough for her to come up with an explanation
that didn’t involve the words “Russian mob” and “murder.”
Because there was no way he was letting it go that easily. Jasper McQueen did not quit until he got what
he wanted, be it answers or his ring on her finger or her ass in his San Diego condo.
“Queen, you and Twist stay here for the duration of the dinner. Rotate out with one of the boys in the
dining room on the hour,” McBain ordered. “Time for me to walk the perimeter.”
She threw a look at him over her shoulder in time to see him give Jasper a shoulder clasp of male
solidarity.
Great. He had reinforcements.
“More bartenders are coming tomorrow with the catering staff for the wedding,” she explained needlessly
after McBain exited and Nettie toddled off. “But I’m it for tonight’s dinner, so I don’t have time for a chat.”
“I’ll wait,” Jasper promised.
Of course he would. “Ho-kay then.”
Since she couldn’t budge him and had zero hope of ignoring him, Quinn focused on the work. She finished
the margaritas as Nettie returned with a new order, all the while feeling Jasper’s accusing gaze locked on her,
his eyes tracking her every move as though she’d disappear if he blinked.
God, he looked good enough to eat.
Down girl. He wasn’t hers anymore, and while she might still look, not being able to touch would
probably kill her before the Russian mob did.
* * *
“So!” Twist broke into the charged silence with his usual delicacy. “How’d you crazy kids meet?”
“Vegas,” Jasper growled. “The last time you forced me on vacation. And no, it did not ‘stay there’.”
Twist’s disbelieving gaze switched back and forth between Jasper and Quinn. “That was only a long
weekend. You’re telling me you met and got married in four days?!”
Said like that, it sounded as nutso as it was. But Jasper had taken one look at Quinn in the bar of the
Bellagio that first night and knew there was no one else for him.
Shockingly, she’d felt the same.
For a little while.
Betrayal battled with rage for dominance and beat down the fuckin’ thrill that’d ripped through his chest
when he’d first realized Quinn was within reach again. He barely stifled the urge to drag her over the bar and
handcuff them together before she could leave him again.
He reached for his frayed control and found it in tatters. That had been the case with Quinn from the start.
The moment he laid eyes on all that was her—tits and ass and so much infectious attitude, she nearly vibrated
with it—he’d been wild for her.
Christ, two minutes around her and already she was driving him mad.
And he didn’t need an audience for that madness.
“You’re not being paid to guard that bar stool,” Jasper pointedly reminded his friend.
“Jeez, bring a guy to paradise for a vacation, and all he wants to do is work.”
“Vacation starts after we’re done with this job. A job that has to pay for that vacation given we’re on
enforced leave without pay.”
“You’re on what?!” Quinn said, pausing in her drink mixing to gape at him and Twist.
Jasper stifled a wince. Quinn had a rabid curiosity streak and tended to dig in exactly where he didn’t
want her. “Leave it.”
“Whoops,” Twist taunted. “Cat’s outta the bag.”
“You can cut that shit out at any time.”
“It’s hardly top secret intel. Unlike your marriage, apparently.”
Quinn grabbed a bottle of triple sec and shot him a look. “I know, right?!”
Jasper’s head tipped back so he investigated the ceiling. “And now you’re bonding. Spectacular.”
“Hey, pal, you’re the one who went to Vegas, married a superhot chick, and hid it from everyone you
know, including me. Inquiring minds wanna know.”
“I wanna know.” Jasper heard the anonymous mutter in his ear piece and realized with embarrassed shock
that he and Twist were still on coms. Christ, they were all a bunch of gossiping women.
He ripped the mechanism out of his ear and threw it across the room where it shattered a vase so
violently, Twist jumped. “Maybe you could do me a solid and hold off until after I find out how the wife I
haven’t seen or heard from since she ran out on me a year ago winds up in Barefuck Bay the exact day we do!”
That brought Quinn’s chin up. “Ex-wife,” she reminded him, unruffled by his uncharacteristic display of
temper. “And you left me first.”
Jasper’s hands curled into fists. The gall of the woman! “I was on a mission,” he gritted out between
clenched teeth, blood on a fast boil. “For my country.”
“Yeah, well, next time have the courtesy to let your wife know you’re leaving before you disappear for six
weeks!”
He set his feet and crossed his arms and practically read her mind when she swept him up in a glance and
smirked. The Patented Jasper McQueen Stubborn Stance. “Terrorists aren’t known for giving advanced notice,
babe. We go where we’re commanded to go, and when the intel comes in or the embassy is attacked or the
hostages are taken, we go fast. And it was eight weeks, which you would know if you had bothered to stick
around!”
Her eyes narrowed. “Maybe I would have, sweetheart, if I hadn’t found out from some reluctant secretary
at the yard when I called trying to find you that you didn’t even bother to tell the Navy you got married!”
Jasper’s retort was stymied by the beep of his watch alarm marking the hour. He hit the off button and
ordered Twist, “Go relieve Rocco.”
“We don’t switch out for another thirty.”
“Find something to do,” Jasper snarled. “Somewhere else.”
Twist made a show of getting up. “Sure I shouldn’t stick around in case you suddenly need an alibi?”
“Don’t need an alibi, ’cause when I kill you, it’ll be justified.”
“You love me. You know it.” He winked at Quinn, and then scuttled back as Jasper took two menacing
steps in Twist’s direction. “Calm down, Queen, I’m going. Gotta line up a bridesmaid anyway now the hot
bartender is off the market.”
“You should go with him,” Quinn advised after Twist had cleared the doorway, shutting the wooden
panels behind him to close them off from the party.
But Jasper had just realized this was the perfect chance for him to find out what the fuck went so wrong in
their marriage that she scuttled away like a fugitive without so much as talking to him. Had he pushed too fast for
too much? Had he frightened her? Or was it merely that he’d been her next wild ride and she’d never loved him
in the first place? It’d torn him up for months, wondering what he had done that was so wrong he chased away
the love of his life.
But now she was here. Now, he would know.
He planted his feet again, hands on hips. “Not going anywhere till I get some answers.”
It helped that the rehearsal schedule worked in his favor. The rehearsal guests had finally tucked into their
entrees making a break from cocktail orders. The wait staff made similar use of the lull and efficiently prepped
tables for the next course in the other room, which meant he and Quinn would be effectively alone in the bar
until the dinner ended.
He saw the moment Quinn realized he had her trapped.
She took a step back, grabbed the ledge behind her, and leaned back against her hands. The position thrust
her chest forward and lifted the edge of her blouse even further away from her low-slung trousers.
Rock, meet hard place.
Jasper knew she was too pissed at him to be deliberately trying to arouse him, but that didn’t reduce the
size of his reaction.
“Oh yeah?” she replied and fuck him, her sneer was such priceless Quinn attitude that, in spite of himself,
he had to fight off a grin and get a tighter rein on his hard on. “Like what?”
“Like why you’re using my name again when you told me—through the lawyers, because God forbid you
should talk to me—how eager you were to shed every trapping of being married, including my name.”
She shrugged. “I changed my mind.”
That ratcheted up his simmering rage so fast, he almost put his fist into the bar.
His narrowed gaze swept her from top to bottom. Her cheeks were flushed, enough that he could see the
heated flesh even in the dim light of the bar. She dodged his eyes too, which was a very un-Quinn thing to do…
unless she was trying to hide something from him. “Cut the crap, Quinn. You in trouble?”
His jaw clenched when her face went blank. That quick, she’d shut him out. If not for her body’s reactions
—reactions he suspected she had no clue she was giving him—he’d have thought her unmoved by his return.
“It’s really none of your business.”
“Bullshit.”
That cracked her mask. Irritated, her shoulders squared off. “Where the hell do you get off?”
“Where do I get off? Are you fucking kidding me?”
“No, Jasper, I am not fucking kidding you,” she said with an exaggerated patience that ramped him up
even more. “We are divorced. Dee-vorced. Who and what I am is no longer your concern.”
That did it. Jasper could practically hear the tether of his control snap as he vaulted over the bar, locked
his hands on her hips, and yanked her against him.
Her hands flew up on a gasp, but he was too fast for her to push him away, and they got caught instead
against his chest. Jasper took advantage of her open mouth and swooped in.
Her taste was narcotic. His mind fogged over and the burn in his chest exploded as he drank deep.
Somewhere along the way that day, she’d indulged in a shot of rum. He licked the spicy flavor from her lips and
dived deeper.

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Caught by surprise, Quinn had no time to put up her shields, shields she’d held fast even when he’d been
deep inside her, so he owned her mouth from the start and rubbed his tongue against hers in a slow rhythm that
belied his raging lust. She always wanted to rush to the finish and never more than when they were having sex,
laser focused on her orgasm and ready to get on with it. So he would bridle that instinct and instead prime her
with slow teases of what she’d get when he had her naked and spread for him. Blissful torture that only his
brutal training to become a SEAL had allowed him to endure, but she’d always, always, made it more than
worth it.
This time, slow was going to have to wait for round two.
Or three.
He lifted his mouth to give them half a second to catch a breath, nipping once at her bottom lip because he
couldn’t stand to lose her taste even for that long. She exhaled loudly through her nose and then took the
offensive, and it was her tongue in his mouth staking claim and filling Jasper with exultant satisfaction.
My wild lady.
One of her hands slid under his pit to grab his lat while the other plunged up into his hair to hold him to
her. The movement put them chest to chest and Jasper groaned as the hard points of her nipples poked him
through their shirts. She lifted her lips, tilted her head, and kissed him again, the new angle deeper and
astoundingly more intimate.
Crushed between them, her necklace rattled against his chest until it gave up the battle and split apart,
crashing pearls to the ground like scattered hail. He felt her back-of-the-throat whimper in his dick and squeezed
the bounty of her hips. She followed his silent direction by boosting her ass up onto the ledge so he could bump
her knees wide and finally, finally, shove his hard cock into the cradle of her covered pussy after being denied it
for twelve…fucking…months.
His arms crisscrossed the small of her back, brushing the edge of those low-slung pants so that his thumbs
skirted the top of her ass. He held her tight enough to make breathing a chore, and he didn’t care, he didn’t care
one damn bit, they could suffocate from kissing and that’d be fine by him, because he knew the second he set her
free, she’d be gone.
And he would not lose her again.
And then, as suddenly as it began, the kiss was over. They stood there, clutching each other, mouths as
close as possible without connecting, breathing heavily in shared astonishment, each unwilling to be the first to
shatter the moment and bring hard reality back to crash around them.
I missed you. The words ripped through Jasper’s soul. He’d missed her mouth, her tits, her pussy, her
deep brown eyes, the scar on her chin, her sharp tongue, and her ridiculous sense of humor. He missed how she
held him and how she took him and how she got him better than anyone, even Twist. He’d hear a pun and think to
text it to her knowing she’d never met one she didn’t like, only to painfully remember he’d blocked her number.
He’d go to a bar and expect to see Quinn behind it, so he stopped going out except when called to untangled a
teammate, and that immediately put Maverick back in his mind, and fucking hell, he did not need that right now.
She’d turned his world effervescent so that it fizzed with joy and laughter, like one of her drinks,
showered him with wild beauty and then wrenched it all away to leave him feeling utterly abandoned, something
he hadn’t experienced since his adoptive parents returned him to foster care only to keep his two younger
brothers as their own.
I missed you.
But Jasper knew better than to say that to Quinn. And that hole she’d left behind that had ached in his chest
for twelve long months rang hollow with renewed loss.
“You still kiss like a wet dream,” he muttered instead.
It was a mistake. Quinn immediately went stiff with insult and tried to yank free of him, but she’d never
been a match for his strength—though always more than a match with her tongue—and he braced to get the edge
of it and not in the way he wanted.
Instead, when his arms locked her in place, a deeply wounded look seeped into her dark brown eyes, eyes
that yet shimmered from their kiss. It pierced past betrayal and abandonment to stab Jasper right in his aching
heart. “You’re a son of a bitch, you know,” she whispered.
That was truer than she could realize. His hands cupped her jaw. I missed you. “What trouble are you in,
Quinn?” he asked again. His thumbs brushed her racing pulse, coaxing her to capitulation.
Not that it made a dent in his determined wife. She blinked, erasing any hint of that rare vulnerability, and
said, “Honestly, it’s none of your business,” and Jasper was done.
Enough fucking around. His fingers dug a bit deeper into her skin, enough that her mouth popped open
with an invitation he’d bet she didn’t realize was on offer. “Everything about you is my business, and you’re
gonna stay my business until one of us stops breathing no matter what goddamn name you’re wearing when we
do.”

Something Wild This Way Comes

15 May

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

It’s Wild Week here at Lady Smut! We’re celebrating the nomination of my novel, Wild on the Rocks, by InD’Tale Magazine for their prestigious RONE (Reward of Novel Excellence) Award in the category Best Suspense/Thriller: Short.

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The first step of the RONE nomination process is the public voting stage. I ask you, Lady Smutters, to kindly support my book for this award. Please go to http://indtale.com/rone-awards-week-five now to cast your vote for Wild on the Rocks in the Best Suspense/Thriller: Short category.

But wait, there’s more!

Welcome to the Lady Smut Wild Scavenger Hunt!

All week long, the Lady Smut bloggers will be sharing one wild thing they’ve done and one wild thing they’d like to do but haven’t yet. Then, you, lovely Lady Smutters, post in the comments of this post all the “wild” things you hunt down on the Lady Smut blog posts this week. All who comment will then be entered to win a $10 Amazon gift card giveaway along with a copy of Wild on the Rocks! You can also be entered for the raffle by posting a screen cap confirmation of your vote for Wild on the Rocks.

And be sure to check in with Lady Smut on Thursday when I’ll be posting a brand new excerpt from Wild on the Rocks!

Something Wild This Way Comes…

In my family and with most of my friends, I’m known as the wild one. I am usually the first one to climb out on the cliff, the first one to ask the question, the one willing to try anything–within reason. The first guy I brought home when I was fourteen wore a leather jacket. My mother took one look at him and said to my father, “we are in trouble”. (BTW the guy turned out to be a total tool and my mother never stop needling me about him.)

Being the designated wild one always amused me because I’ve actually always been the good girl, endeavoring to get it right, follow the rules–and I am always, always afraid. Afraid of doing it wrong, afraid of disapproval, afraid of a conclusion I can’t anticipate or control, afraid of being punished for breaking the rules, however wrong those rules may be, ultimately afraid of “getting in trouble”. My best friend once said “Kiersten wants to be a rebel, but she keeps getting tripped up by the rules,” an eerily accurate description for the dichotomy of my personality: the Wild Good Girl.

Age has helped me get over the idea that being good and following the rules is some kind referendum on my character. A decent part of my adult life has been allowing myself to be free of those rules, or, more specifically, not to allow those rules to keep me from taking risks with long-term benefits for myself simply because they may not be looked upon as the right thing to do and/or may benefit the one over the many. Men make such decisions all the time; it’s expected of them, but when a woman breaks out in such a way, when a woman behaves in a manner traditional ascribe to the man’s role, it’s received with decidedly less favor. Socially, we’re expected to be self-effacing and modest, inclusive and without ambition, nurturing and unselfish. Standing up for ourselves and doing things that ensure our own happiness regardless of the opinions or judgments of those around us takes courage and verve and the ability to live with any potential fallout. It is, in effect, a wild move.

One of the wildest things I’ve done in my life is to travel abroad alone. I’ve done this twice–to Ireland in 1999 and to Italy in 2001 (a few months prior to 9/11)–long before women travelling by themselves became a regular topic in the The New York Times’ Travel Section. I love to travel and wanted particularly to visit both these countries, had longed to do so for many years. But I was never able to find a friend or partner equally ready and/or able to take the trip. So I finally decided, the hell with it. I’ll go on my own then. I was no longer willing not to do something, not to achieve a dream, simply because there was no one to do it with me.

It doesn’t sound very wild, does it? Not in today’s global climate where we’re all interconnect and the world is Twitterfied. But remember, there were no smart phones back then (I left my flip phone at home–both times). I had a digital camera with panoramic capabilities and that was considered pretty damn special. When the loneliness broke me halfway through my first trip, I called my mother from a cell phone booth on the west coast of Ireland–on her AT&T long distance card. Social media did not exist. By the time I got to Italy, Internet cafes were prominent because email was commonplace, but the full might of the Web had yet to become the lifeblood of every home. So stepping off a plane into a country you never before been in where you know no one and, in the one case, don’t speak the language, and you aren’t sure exactly where you’re going or staying from night to night, trust me, it felt pretty wild at the time. These are the things on which episodes for Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders are based.

For the past two years, I’ve been on a journey of physical self-improvement. I didn’t like my life–specifically, the limitations put on it by my physical restrictions–so I decided to change it. It’s an ongoing journey that I often get wrong, but as I walked around downtown Toronto last weekend in the rain, without having to stop and catch my breath, without having to rest every 30 or so feet, without each step being filled with pain and effort, without sweat dripping down my face from the immense effort of walking a straight line, I reveled in getting it right this time. Enough now that I can go back to being more than a bit wild.

So what’s something wild I *want* to do. Well, that list has been getting longer and longer, but top line are two things: sky diving and learning to drive a motorcycle.

I’ve been parasailing and loved it, so sky diving seems my next natural progression. And, I love to fly in planes; how much more awesome to fly in the sky (with a parachute for landing, natch)? As for the motorcycle, remember that first leather-jacket clad boyfriend? Not like this hasn’t been coming for a long time. My love for MC romances is well documented here at Lady Smut, so it’s hardly a surprise. And why ride pinion when you can drive (outside of being able to hold tight to a hot biker, of course)?

With any luck, there’s all sorts of wild out there yet to come for my future.

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Tell me something wild about yourself, some crazy thing you’ve done or have always wanted to do. Be sure to keep track of all the wild goings-on here this week at Lady Smut. And remember to get out the vote by going to http://indtale.com/rone-awards-week-five and voting for Wild on the Rocks!

Follow Lady Smut. We bring a bit of wild to everything we do.

Writer, singer, editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities straight is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense. Her debut romantic suspense novel, WILD ON THE ROCKS, has been nominated for InD’Tale Magazine’s prestigious RONE award! Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on various social media via @kierstenkrum.

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Have a Taste of Wild: Simply Sinful Giveaway

25 Nov

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

Black Friday may be winding down, but it’s about to get wild here at Lady Smut as our Simply Sinful Giveaway continues with a taste of Wild on the Rocks.

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And I do mean a taste as last weekend, at my request, a master mixologist concocted an original Wild on the Rocks cocktail and lemme tell you, it was lush. What’s in it? Oh how I wish I could tell you…and be able to recreate it myself. But il maestro refused to divulge his secrets–though he did reveal several of the ingredients were no longer available in the United States.

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The makings of Wild on the Rocks, the cocktail.

Instead, to satisfy your new sprouted craving for wild–and whet your appetite for more—take a sip of some of the sexy you’ll find in my novel, Wild on the Rocks. In this very sexy excerpt, divorced couple Quin and Jasper are having a bit of emotions-free, ex-sex–or at least, that was the plan…

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Bottoms up!

Be sure to remember to comment on any (or all) of the excerpts today in order to be eligible to win our dangerously sinful Black Friday “Basket of Sin” giveaway basket. Check back in tomorrow (that’s Saturday, in case you have shopping blackout and lose track of the days) when we announce the winner!

 

 

WILD ON THE ROCKS

Wine comes in at the mouth

And love comes in at the eye;

That’s all we shall know for truth

Before we grow old and die.

I lift the glass to my mouth,

I look at you, and I sigh.

—W.B. Yeats

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I missed you too.

Not since he’d received his trident had four words meant so much to Jasper.

“Quinn,” he said but she kissed him before he’d finished her name. He expected the push and pull of her usual aggression, couldn’t wait to suit up for that hot battle again, but she surprised him, licking her bottom lip so her tongue slipped sweetly against his, teasing him with a taste of her. He groaned and felt her lips tip up before he took over, kissing her deep and wet and long as he lifted her off her feet and backed her up. He put a knee in the bed to lower her back down to the mattress, back again beneath him, all the while kissing her like he’d never get enough.

He’d been wrong earlier. This first time, they were going to take it slow after all.

His mouth trailed down over her chin to nip playfully at her throat. He chuckled low when her breath stuttered over an exhale. “You always were sensitive here,” he remembered.

She swallowed hard. “Not only there.”

He shifted down to the valley formed by the opened buttons of her top. “Here too,” he agreed, brushing his mouth over the mounds of her breasts that plumped up out of her bra. Swiftly, he unfastened the remaining buttons until he could spread the panels of her tuxedo shirt wide.

Beautiful.

He slipped his hands to the middle of her back to arch her up like an offering so he could tug her bra aside with his teeth. Her neck stretched back on the pillows and she moaned deep and long when his mouth engulfed her nipple.

It was better than any memory. She was better than any dream, even the ones he’d had of her, and boy, had he dreamed of Quinn. Hot, filthy, body-draining dreams that’d woke him in the middle of the night with so rigid an erection, even jacking off couldn’t ease the pain.

As always, Quinn was game for it. Greedy hands roamed up and down from his skull to his back to his waist, every inch she could reach while he paid homage to her breasts. “Here, baby,” she coaxed, pulling down the left side of her bra. His eyes flickered up to meet hers, hot and hungry with demand. He released her nipple and rolled it between his fingers, leaning over to suck the other one deep. “Jasper,” she moaned, her legs shifting and tangling with his, restless with need.

He ducked his head to drag his mouth down her belly and over that strip of skin she’d left bare for any man to see. “This has been driving me crazy all night,” he admitted hoarsely. “Knowing every guy who saw you wanted his mouth right here. But only so he could get it here,” and he slipped a finger past the band on her trousers and between her legs.

Jasper!”

“Right here, baby.” He unbuckled her belt and had her jeans and panties down and off in the next second. Jasper paused for a moment to take in the vision sprawled out before him. Her tits were propped up on display for him, her legs spread wide so he could see her wet with want for him.

“Christ, you’re gonna go already, aren’t you?”

Frantic, she shook her head against the pillow, but pushed her groin into his palm. “No,” she lied. “I don’t want it to end so soon.”

“If it does, we’ll start it up again.” And with that, he crawled between her legs and put his mouth on her.

If her kiss was narcotic, then the taste of her was the nectar of gods. Nothing compared. Not the first beer after a successful mission. Not his first bite of real food after days of living off MREs.

She shrieked on contact and again when he sucked on her clit. She ground her pelvis into his mouth and her fingers into his skull, clutching him to her as though afraid he might stop. But he had no intention of stopping and licked and sucked and ate at her until the first orgasm ripped her apart.

He knifed up as she came down, tearing at the release to his shoulder holster and setting it and his weapon on the night stand seconds before a rousing Quinn yanked his shirt out of his pants and up without bothering to unbutton it. He raised his arms to help her and then reached for his wallet while she went after his buckle, pulled down his fly, and freed him.

“Quinn,” he groaned when her hand wrapped him up. Her thumb cruised over the weeping tip, and Jasper’s head dropped back. “I want your mouth,” he growled, but when he felt her breath on his flesh, he snapped up and pushed her back into the bed. “But I want you more.”

“Oh my God, yes,” she moaned, notching her legs into the groove of his hips. “Now, Jasp. I need you now.”

She’d just come and already needed it again. She was a marvel, and tonight, right now, she was his.

His again.

“You’re gonna get me, baby. Put this on me first.” He pressed the condom wrapper in her hand before his fingers skated up her arm. “I’d forgotten how soft your skin is.”

She didn’t reply. It took another moment for him to realize she wasn’t gloving him up.

“Quinn?”

She glanced up through her eyelashes with uncharacteristic hesitation that sent a bolt of apprehension coursing through him.

“I’m on the pill,” she quietly reminded him. “And there’s been no one since you.”

He felt her words like a blow to the gut, and God, God, the sweetness of her gift nearly unmanned him.

So he gave it back as he shoved his pants off, shifted up, notch himself in place against her, and slid inside, bare as the day he was born. “No one since you, sweetheart,” he promised, and she finally wrapped him up in her arms and her legs and took him deep in her body until there was no space left between them.

“Kiss me,” she demanded. He ducked his head to comply while pulling out so he could thrust right back into her.

Christ, she was so snug around him, he almost lost it on the second go. She pulsed against him, and he took the cue and thrust out and in again, quickly building to a rhythm that had her clawing his back and making familiar noises of frustrated need in her throat.

“Wildcat,” he praised. Jasper lifted his chest to watch it come over her so he’d have that memory to relive when she was no longer around for him to fuck. She took that as invitation to bite his nipple, which quickly sent him right to the edge. “Hurry up, wildcat,” he urged, thumbing her clit, but she was already there, the spasms of her orgasm clenching down on his dick until he shouted her name and lost his rhythm, plunging and thrusting until he shot deep inside her.

Spent, he kept moving, easing them both back from bliss as he searched and found her mouth with his. “My wildcat,” he murmured against her lips, shoving in her one last time to stay put. “My wild lady.”

Mine.

* * *

“What is that God-awful noise?”

As strangely as it had begun, the piercing beep slicing through the sleepy fog in Quinn’s head stopped. An arm clutched her waist and then released. Cold rushed in at her back as the warm body that’d been curved around hers all night rolled out of the bed. She murmured sleepily when the sheet was pulled up and around her. A body dropped to the floor, and Quinn heard the once familiar sounds of Jasper’s morning routine pepper the air.

She cracked her eyes enough to make out the alarm clock across the room. “It should be illegal to be awake at such an ungodly hour of the morning.”

“Unless you stay up for it, right?”

She didn’t have to look to know he was grinning.

“That’s something else entirely,” she groused, snuggling back into the fluffy pillow.

“It always is.”

He went back to manly grunting his way through what she rightly guessed was a regimen of sit ups.

Back when they’d been married, they’d done this almost on a daily basis, or at least on those mornings Jasper was home. He needed far less sleep than she, especially if she was working into the wee hours, and too many years in the armed services had made the concept of “sleeping in” an anathema. He’d wake, she’d complain without meaning it, and he’d do his first group of calisthenics there in the bedroom while she kept sleepy watch.

Quinn had loved those mornings. Loved having that private pocket of time with Jasper before his world intruded and dragged him away from her. She adored watching his strong, mouthwatering body work through the exercises that kept him that way. She thrilled at the knowledge that he’d use that strength and ability to defend and shelter their nation and to shower her with protection and pleasure every chance he got. And she loved that he let her see this, this immense physical and mental strength, but more in those rare moments when he let her catch a glimpse of the rare vulnerability he kept carefully locked away. The fear that he’d fail his men. The worry that he wouldn’t bring them all home; the rage and sorrow when he didn’t.

When they were in bed, one of her favorite things to do was run her hands over all that muscle and sinew and hold him close and treasure him and the knowledge that he was hers in a way he’d be to no other. She’d been so proud of him and humbled to call him hers.

It had been a wrenching pain the first morning after she left him to realize she’d never do that again, that she no longer had that right.

The chorus of grunts and low-voiced swearing went on for another ten minutes through which Quinn lightly dozed until he shifted into pushups. She roused with interest. If she remembered right—and she was pretty sure she did—Jasper lifting and flexing his way through pushups was a sight worth seeing. She rolled onto her belly into the warm pocket left in his wake and, after a Herculean effort to lift her eyelids, peered over the edge of the bed.

Totally worth it.

Dim sunbeams seeped in through the blinds, cutting the floor into bands of light and dark. Jasper’s long body stretched down through one beam, head at the nightstand, feet a good four inches past the end of the bed.

Damn if the man didn’t glow.

His shoulder blades met in the center of his back on each down stroke, throwing his spine in sharp relief. Quinn shifted on one hip and propped her head on a forearm to get a better vantage point to trace the defined groove from the base of his neck all the way down to where it disappeared beneath the waistband of his black boxer briefs. The sheet slipped to the small of her back as she spent a few moments in intense study of his firm, clenched ass.

His back was a thing of sculpted beauty matched only by his literally bulging biceps and delts as he lifted up into a precise, even plane from toe to knuckle then back down to hover half an inch above the bedroom floor before lifting up again into a push up stand. Quinn’s heartbeat accelerated as she watched, riveted by the wonder of form and discipline, tracking each flex and ripple as if mapping the secrets of the universe.

And that was before he switched to one hand.

Quinn bit her lip, but not before a low moan managed to escape.

“What was that?” he asked without looking up.

Mesmerized, she counted thirty repetitions before he switched hands. “Sorry?” she croaked.

“You said something.”

“Hardly. I’m not even in my body yet.”

“Give me fifteen minutes, and I will be.”

She narrowed her eyes, but declined to retort given he probably wasn’t wrong, especially if he kept up with that, and focused on the show he was bent on performing.

He held firm in a push-up stand, then bounced back a few inches on palms and toes before lowering prone to the floor. Crossing his arms under his face so his fingertips nearly brushed each elbow, Jasper extended upwards, legs in an X formation, hands crisscrossed beneath him, one above the other, wide shoulders rounded so his triceps bulged out all along the outside of his arms. Without pausing for rest, he powered on through another set.

Quinn caught her breath and slid a hand down her belly.

“That one’s new,” she noted, a little breathless.

He grunted through three more. “Forearm to triceps extension.”

The tip of her index finger strummed along her slippery folds. “Do tell.”

There must’ve been something in her voice because this time, when he held the push up stand, his chin lifted and those green-gold eyes zeroed in on her.

Quinn licked her lips and watched heat chase the question from his face. “You like that.”

He wasn’t asking, but she held his gaze through lowered lids and let him see her answer.

She liked it. She like it a lot.

Balancing on one hand, he reached out to tug the sheet from her body. “Show me,” he rumbled, voice hoarse.

Without losing his eyes, she rolled to her back and spread her legs wide, setting her thumb to work so she could slide two fingers inside. Automatically, her hips lifted toward the pleasure. A low groan rolled up from the floor. Her free hand cupped her breast. She plucked the nipple under his avaricious gaze.

“Wider,” he ordered, chin jutting toward her legs.

“Baby,” she whispered while she complied. “Get up here.”

“You got your show,” He levered up from the floor and stretched out across the bottom of the bed, head in hand right between her spread feet. “This one’s mine.”

Fair enough. Quinn settled in to giving a show that would drive him wild. She moved her hips against her hand, working herself on her fingers as she watched Jasper watching her. Twin spots of color ran high up on his cheeks. His beautiful mouth pulled into a thin rigid line. Sweat glistened on his chest from the workout and she lick her lips again thinking how next time she was going to taste him from stem to stern and everywhere in between.

Quinn glanced down and saw the tip of his erection popping out from the top of his boxer briefs. Jasper caught her direction and pulled himself free in the next second, stroking his length almost leisurely without looking away from her busy hands.

Quinn’s efforts sped up.

“That’s it, baby,” he coaxed. “Show me how much you want it. Let me see how wet you get for me.”

“Jasper,” she moaned, fingers flying between her legs, her nipple pinched so tight, pain mixed with the intense pleasure. She wanted to close her eyes and let the orgasm roll through her, but she couldn’t look away from Jasper. He’d shifted his hand to stroke her calf while his cut forearm kept steady rhythm. “I love arm porn.”

He barked out a laugh, then leaned over to kiss her thigh. “Go over hard,” he urged. She felt his breath on her fingers and tripped over a new high. “Give that to me, sweetheart.”

She scratched her nail over her nipple and that tipped her past the edge. Her neck stretched back and she lost her view, but Jasper jacking himself for her was already burned across her mind’s eye. “Oh yes,” she moaned as it crashed over her, her head full of Jasper’s hands and Jasper’s face and Jasper’s body.

She was still in the throes when he bumped her thighs wider, knocked her hand aside, and shoved deep within her.

“Holy fuck,” he swore.

Jasper!” she screamed. She grabbed him by the neck and wrapped one leg around his thighs, one high on his back. “Don’t stop, Jasp,” she begged. “Don’t ever stop.”

He turned his head and sucked her wet fingers into his mouth, curving his tongue to lick her taste from them, and, Lord love a duck, it was so hot, she nearly passed out from the spasm that spurred through her. Jasper lowered his forehead to hers as he rocked in and out. She stared up into his eyes while the sound of their flesh slapping together filled her ears. Dark stubble covered his cheeks so he looked like some pirate intent on pillaging her until she felt him for a week. He’d shave it before going to work, but she wished he wouldn’t. Scruffy Jasper was the man who was all hers, only hers, and she hated knowing soon, she’d have to give him up.

“Come on, wildcat. Come all over me.” He palmed her breast and ducked his head to slip the nipple between his teeth, biting down until she shrieked. She felt the orgasm building again and knew this one was going to be harder that the last two, wild and out of control the way Jasper made her feel every second she was under him.

His hand replaced his mouth at her breast. She reached up to bite his bottom lip as that wild inside her cinched tighter and tighter and tighter until it burst. Her neck arched back; he took hold of her throat and pounded away.

“Fuck, how you squeeze me when you come,” he grunted. “Spectacular.” His hand slid up to her jaw, yanking her face down so they kissed deep and wet and long as he fucked her even harder until finally he came with a hoarse shout.

Panting, they lay in place, Jasper’s face in her neck, Quinn’s mouth at his ear, spent, joined, and savoring that connection in the delicious haze that followed amazing sex. Quinn shivered when his tongue teased her earlobe. Slowly, languidly, her hands mapped his back, tracing the muscles he’d worked that morning first on the floor and then on her.

“You’ve always been my best adventure,” she whispered.

He went rigid and she froze as her words penetrated.

Oh crap, did she really say that out loud?

Jasper raised his head. Going by his look of intense triumph, yup, she definitely said that out loud.

She opened her mouth to backtrack, but was saved the effort by a loud knock on her apartment door.

“Queen!” Twist’s dull voice sounded through the apartment and the opened door of the bedroom. “I’m not standing out here while you bang Quinn again!”

Quinn and Jasper stared at one another with shared shock, and then Jasper’s head dropped to her shoulder.

“I am going to kill him.”

Quinn laughed. “No you’re not. He’s your best friend.”

“Not for much longer. You wouldn’t believe the shit he pulled yesterday. It was a frickin’ sewing circle on coms with my sex life the main gossip topic.”

She rubbed his head in mock sympathy. “Poor baby,” she teased. “I had no idea you alpha boys chattered so when left to yourselves.”

“We don’t, but Twist is a rare breed. Got a psych degree and left a practice behind to join the Navy. Makes him more emo than ten other guys put together.”

He nuzzled her neck. The skin there rippled under the caress. “Man’s got a calling,” he added quietly. “Feels more than most. What you see of him is how he protects that.”

“So it’s all an act?”

“No, he really is that much of an annoying idiot.” She laughed again at his wry frustration. “But I’d trust no one more at my back,” he finished on a serious tone. “Or with my secrets.”

Quinn felt a shard of disappointment that he didn’t feel the same way about her, but shoved it aside. She was enjoying this light, affectionate aftermath with Jasper. He’d be leaving in a few minutes. She didn’t want old wounds opening up before he did.

So she wrapped him up and gave him a light squeeze with her arms and her legs and her still throbbing sex. “He loves you,” she noted while Jasper groaned.

“I know it.” He brushed his thumb over her mouth. “But can we not talk about Twist when I’m hard inside you and have to go in 5 minutes?”

She nipped at his digit when it made a second pass. “Deal.”

His eyes and face softened, and Quinn lost her breath. “Been waiting a long time to see that look on your face again,” he said in a low, warm voice that made her vibrate in all the right places.

“What look?”

Eyes open, he captured her mouth with his and slowly, sweetly slid out of her. “Satisfaction,” he growled and kissed her again. “Gotta go, babe,” and now there was regret in his voice too.

“I know.” She ran her hand over his stubble. “Wish you didn’t have to shave for the job,” she admitted. “I like this look.” She kissed the edge of his scruffy chin. “Pirate Jasper.”

He chuckled low and deep, making her nipples rise up against his hard chest. “You like it, I’ll keep it while I’m here.”

The gesture surprised her. Jasper never went against regulations. “Really?”

“Sure. There are no regs on McBain’s detail, and I don’t have the Navy to adhere to for a couple of weeks.” He bent to rub his rough cheek against her puckered nipple. “Already I can see the benefits.”

“Mmm. You’re giving me ideas.”

His tongue sneaked out to lick sensitive flesh. “Good. I’m already a big fan of your plunder.”

He was doing it to her again, revving up her hunger. He thought she’d been satisfied when the truth was, she could never get enough of him, not if she had him for a hundred years.

“What are we doing here Jasper?” The words escaped before she’d registered them in her brain, or else she would’ve stopped that shit right away.

He looked up at her without moving away from her breast. “We’re enjoying each other, Quinn. And some seriously explosive sex. Why does it have to be anything more complicated than that?”

“Because we’re us. Because it’s always complicated when it’s us.”

“Maybe that’s our problem. Maybe we need a little easy for a change.” He brushed a wisp of hair back from her face. “I’ve missed you. I’ve missed fucking you. I’ve missed talking and laughing with you. You’re a seriously good time and an amazing lay. Why can’t that be enough?”

As painful as his choice of words was, he made it sound so achievable, but Quinn wondered how long they could actually stick within those parameters. How long she could live with having only Jasper’s body and social company and nothing of his soul.

“What happened with the Navy, Jasp?”

“Who are you afraid of, Quinn?” he shot back. She rolled her lips together to keep her mouth shut. “Yeah, that’s what I thought.” His eyes filled with a hint of mean. “You can have my cock. I’m happy to give you more orgasms than you can handle, take as many as you can give me. And we’ll eat and drink and have fun together for as long as we’re both here. But you’re gonna have to share your own secrets before you get a shot at mine again, baby. You gave up the right to know my heart when you gave up on our marriage.”

It hurt and hurt deep, but he was right and it made her voice small when she agreed. “Okay, Jasp.”

He studied her. Quinn figured her easy capitulation came as a surprise. But she was saved again by Twist’s shout. “Let’s go, Queen! Or I’m gonna tell all the boys why we were late to the briefing this morning.”

“Shit. He’ll do it too,” Jasper muttered and Quinn found her good humor restored.

“Maintaining that badass rep must be a rough gig.”

“You’re not kidding.”

He kissed her hard and quick, then knifed up and off the bed to grab his clothes from the floor. He dressed quickly, barely bothering to button his shirt before strapping the shoulder holster over it and shoving his feet back into his boots. Quinn tangled herself back into the sheet and shifted up on her hip to watch him.

“I’ll shower back at the resort after the briefing.”

“They set you up in one of those posh villas by the sea?”

He snorted. “We’ve got rooms in the employee section, but once we’re done with this job, we’ll move into the resort proper. Discounted rate, or we’d be shacking up next door to you.”

“Hibiscus Court’s not that bad.”

“Babe, I jimmied the lock in two minutes.”

“Bragging is unattractive even in a bad ass, super SEAL.”

He grinned and leaned over the bed so they were nose to nose. “SEALs don’t brag. We don’t have to. But if I was bragging, it’d be about how I got you off twice in less than twenty minutes.” He kissed her hard if quick. “But I’m too much of an officer and a gentleman.”

“I’ll remind you I got to the first one on my own.”

He kissed her again, slipping his tongue in her mouth this time. “Sure you did, sweetheart. Now, you need me to set an alarm so you can go back to sleep or you gonna get up?”

“The wedding’s not till one, and Willow got Clancy to hire a temp to help him cover the breakfast and brunch runs.”

“So you’re gonna sleep.”

“No, I need to pick up some supplies in town. Then I thought I’d hit the beach until I have to start set up.”

“I get a window, I’ll come find you, yeah?”

She thought of Jasper in swim trunks, his delicious body wet with ocean water. “That’d be good.”

He read her face and his eyes softened. “Yeah,” he repeated. Then with a final kiss and a resigned glare in Twist’s direction when he shouted again, Jasper headed for the door and left without looking back.

Quinn rolled to her side again and stared at the window blinds. She heard the front door shut behind Jasper and the muffled exchange between the two men. She kinda missed not hearing their banter. Probably more than worth the price of the ticket.

What kind of price was she about to pay to have this time with Jasper? Sure, there was something to be said for having an affair with a man who knew exactly how to get her off. There’d been good reasons for her year-long dry spell and only some of it had to do with her broken heart. When you had the best, settling for a runner up was so far from enticing as to not be worth the bother. Jasper was the best lover she’d ever had—he’d ruined her for other men—and it hadn’t even taken an entire day before they wound up in bed together again. Why shouldn’t she capitalize on the fact that fate or divine providence had dropped them both in paradise at the same time?

You gave up the right to know my heart.

Oh God, how she wanted his heart again. His heart and his secrets and the right to claim him as hers with as much ferocity as he’d once claimed her. She wanted to reach deep and pull out the wild he’d only ever shown to her and keep it close, keep it safe. But Jasper had named his price and it was a cost she was unwilling to pay. Because this time, when Quinn left him, she knew it wouldn’t be by her choice.

She might not be alive to make it.

Writer, singer, editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities strait is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense. Her debut romantic suspense novel, Wild on the Rocksis now available. Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on various social media via @kierstenkrum.

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Basket ‘o Sin!

Next up in the Lady Smut Simply Sinful Reader Event is Elizabeth Shore at 9 P.M.

 

Sexy Sunday Snippet: An Early Taste of SEALed With a Twist

23 Oct

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

Now available exclusively from Kindle. Click image to buy!

Now available exclusively from Kindle. Click image to buy!

Happy Sunday, Lady Smutters. Are you feeling particularly holy today? Or are you unexpectedly in need of something for which to atone? Well, look no further! As part of our on-going excerpt Sundays, here is a *very* early taste of my upcoming novella, SEALed With a Twist.

A sequel to my debut novel Wild on the Rocks that released earlier this year, SEALed With a Twist features Navy SEAL Grant “Twisted” Sisti and the defrocked debutante he once happily fished out of a pool at the Casa Blanca resort on Barefoot Bay. Six months after the events in Wild on the Rocks, Twist has returned to Barefoot Bay to stand with his best friend and former commander, Jasper, as he remarries his ex-wife, Quinn. But all things are not happy-go-lucky with the man who’s twisted sense of humor earned him his call sign. And they’re about to get even more complicated.

SEALed With a Twist will be available to buy in February. Keep an eye out for the novella’s upcoming smokin’ cover reveal and, in the meantime, enjoy this early taste of Twist.

****

Grant unlocked the villa with the key card and a faint regret for the lack of a hard key in his hand. Hard to defend yourself against some asshole who might shove inside the room right behind you with only a key card.

The default to combat readiness reassured him. Not that he expected to stumble upon violent crime here—recent Russian mob incursions notwithstanding. But it felt good to know his head might be screwed up, but his training looked to be intact.

It was that training that had Grant scanning the villa’s interior as he ambled in. Someone had left a light on in the living area and another over the kitchen sink leaving an ambient haze to hover over the main rooms. He noted the food set up on the island block before breaking off to reconnoiter the bedrooms and baths. Satisfied no one else had breached the perimeter, he was halfway to the patio when his phone chimed with Jasper’s reply.

Even through the flat, emotionless language of a text, Jasper’s words were resolute. NEED YOU TO BRIEF ME ON WHAT THIS SHIT IS ABOUT.

Grant snorted. Like that was gonna happen. He pulled back the wide glass doors that led out to the patio and pool before typing out WHATEVER, MAN. KISS QUINN FOR ME.

This time, the reply came quick: FUCK OFF.

And now they were back on the easy ground where Grant felt most comfortable. It was his job to dig into the emotions of his Team, to make sure their heads were in a place where they could continue to complete their duty.

Hell, if he’d have any of them, even Jasper, do the same to him.

He let Jasper keep the last word and tucked his phone in his back pocket just as his foot tangled in a pair of shorts left in a pile on the pool deck.

The hell?

His gaze tracked along to land on a matching golf shirt. He could just make out the Merry Maids logo in the glow of the pool lights

Shit. A gatecrasher. He was not in the mood to deal with this shit. Feelin’ too much today already. Watching Jasper and Quinn get their happy ending, dealing with Putter, working to keep that devil may care attitude at the forefront so his friends didn’t cotton on to the shit messin’ with his head. He didn’t have it in him to deal with some employee taking advantage of the late-day wedding and plush environs.

The muscle in his jaw clenched when he saw the bra and panties discarded at the edge of the deep end. A soft splash caught his attention and he turned his head in time to catch glimpse of arms cutting through the water with smooth, sharp strokes.

Her body had length, most of it in the legs that kicked rhythmically in time with her arms, calf muscles cut in relief. Her head tilted his way for her to take a breath, eyes shut, the oval shape of her face perfectly bisected by the water like a Carnivàle half mask. Grant’s eyes tracked down to the equally round and, it had to be said, pert shape of her bare ass with tight cheeks he guessed would comfortably fit in each of his hands.

She reached the end of the pool and executed a perfect flip that set her feet in precise location to launch into another lap. The floor lights in the pool illuminated the gleam of her body as she undulated under the surface for near half the pool’s length before breaching the surface with the sharp bob of a breast stroke.

Emphasis on breasts, plural, as both globes were revealed to Grant’s growing admiration. The SEAL in him admired her skill. She was an amateur but a damn good one who knew to move with the water rather than against it. Not many amateurs cottoned on to that trick, instead thought swimming was a battle to tame the water to their forms. All too many of them never learned the truth.

There was no taming the water. Not in any form.

The man in him was impressed by her other intriguing assets. He crossed his arms and settled in at rest to enjoy the show.

She was halfway through the return lap when she finally tagged him. Immediately, she floundered, getting a good swallow of pool water as she did, which led to an epic bout of choking while she got her feet under her.

Fixed on him, her eyes bugged out wide, but the pool light now put her face in shadow, hiding their color. Her once fluid limbs locked with alarm and a shocked embarrassment that grudgingly intrigued him.

‘Cept he wasn’t in the mood to tangle with a moonlit mermaid.

“You’ve got some nerve.”

“You’re not supposed to be here,” she accused between coughs.

“Pretty sure I am given how much I’m paying for it.” His gaze swept over her without a sign of his admiration. “Don’t remember checking off the ‘naked water nymph’ perk on the reservation.”

“It’s –it’s only—” A final harsh gurgle cleared her throat. “It’s only offered to Gold Star members.”

She had the nerve to joke? Her job in his hands and she was jerking his chain?

“I’ll remember to thank management for the upgrade when I report you.”

That took care of her cheek. “You can’t do that,” she whispered.

“Think you’re wrong there, nymph.”

Something odd flashed through the shocked embarrassment in her face. Odd and…familiar.

His vision narrowed to pinpoint on her features. Her wet hair left her face in relief and that whisper of warning teased the back of his neck again. The one that’d saved his life countless times in the field. The one that told him he’d missed something important.

He felt it, but didn’t get it, so he got pissed. For once, Grant let the aggravation show. “Tell me your name”

She started at his bark. “Ska—Skye.” She checked the distance to where she’d left her clothes. It was the new angle of her head that finally clicked.

“You’re the maid who snuck behind me when I was on the phone.”

“I hardly ‘snucked’,” she denied with instinctive insult. “But yes, that was me” She swallowed and he could see her rally right before his eyes. Her shoulders rolled back, chin tilting with an arrogance he’d expect from his Yankee, blue-blooded mother, not a housemaid at a Florida beach resort. “And don’t speak to me like that,” she demanded, all traces of embarrassed guilt gone.

He showed her the edge of her amusement. “Not in the position to make demands, darlin’.”

She turned that rigid shoulder to him, exposing plump side boob and a very nice back whose spine was ramrod straight. She swished her way to the edge of the pool where she’d left her clothes—which were now at his feet.

This seemed not to bother her at all. Once at the side of the pool, she looked up, fingers curling around the rim, and, fuck him, his dick finally dialed in to take acute notice, rousing despite her breasts being out-of-sight crushed to the wall

Her legs kicked idly in the water, muddying his view, but he’d seen enough to know she’d be worth the time and effort—if he was in the mood to make either. Well, parts of him were in the mood, but it’d been a long time since he’d been led around by his dick. One tempting water nymph wasn’t going to make him revert.

“You gonna stand there all night or you gonna report me?”

More cheek. He really didn’t want to like this woman.

“Haven’t decided. Maybe if you were a little nicer, you could talk me out of it.”

Any other woman would’ve cut and run by now, especially when he was deliberately being this much of an outright asshole.

Instead, Skye contemplated him from below and then, shocking the shit outta him, she flattened her hands and hoisted herself out of the pool. A whoosh of water heralded her expulsion and then there she stood, naked and without a hint of shame.

He took her in, half aware of the effort it took not to have his mouth gaping like a mouth-breather. Water dripped down her chest and over her high, pert breasts whose nipples raised to points against the cooler air. Down the concave slope of her belly and over the natural flare of her hips and vee of her exposed sex to pool around her feet on the asphalt.

A surge of lust contorted him. He wanted his hands on those hips, his mouth on those breasts, and those lithe legs wrapped tight and high on his back as he surged inside her. He felt the pull of her expectation and somehow wrenched his eyes from the feast of her body to the no less bounty of her face. When Skye caught his gaze, her lush mouth curved in a Cheshire smile.

“How much nicer do you want me to be?”

Writer, singer, editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities straight is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense. Her debut romantic suspense novel, Wild on the Rocksis now available. Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on various social media via @kierstenkrum.

 

Exclusive Excerpt: WILD ON THE ROCKS

1 Aug

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

Hello Lady Smutters! Happy Monday and Happy First of the Month of August, the best month of the year! And that’s not only because it’s my birth month…okay, yes, it’s solely because it’s my birth month. I’m good with that.

Currently, I’m in deadline hell finishing up the first draft on SEALed WITH A TWIST (coming in October!), which, unfortunately, leaves little time for blog writing. Some fantastic fellow writers will be guest posting in my place this August while I get my writing ducks in a row. Quack, quack.

Since I’m loathe to leave you empty handed, keep reading for an exclusive excerpt from my debut romantic suspense novel WILD ON THE ROCKS, one never before posted outside of publication. I hope you enjoy this taste of Jasper and Quinn. Thanks for being phenomenal readers. And remember to follow Lady Smut to stay on top of all the smexiness.

 

Alcohol gives you infinite patience for stupidity.

—Sammy Davis, Jr.

Quinn pulled into the parking spot in front of the Hibiscus Court Apartments, closed the SUV’s moon roof, and set the brake. She shut the car down, reached for the door latch and then stopped.

Nope, not even enough energy left for something as small as pulling the door handle.

Her head dropped to rest on top of the steering wheel. God, she’d forgotten how much it took out of her to work such a long day. Once business for In the Mix had taken off, her usual gigs became blocks of structured time and targeted hours, maybe four or five max for a large event. That didn’t account for planning and research and booking, all of which consumed time, but all done with her ass in a chair, not hours on her feet in heeled boots. Not since San Diego had she put in a full shift with overtime, which was what the 12 hours she’d spent working the Thornquist rehearsal dinner and after party felt, and that didn’t include her early start to meet with the wedding planners that morning.

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Damn, but those rich politicos could pound ’em back.

But it wasn’t only the work that’d left her drained tonight. She was full up on emotional overload thanks to one stubborn Navy SEAL.

Jasper bloody McQueen had knocked her straight off her axis but good.

She’d been too busy to keep track of the security guys and their rotations on the off chance Jasper was reassigned to the bar. She did catch glimpses of Jasper’s friend Twist throughout the rest of the event. Around midnight, shouts and raucous screams from the pool area had sent nearly everyone running for the patio. Quinn mopped up the spills they’d left behind and kept an eye on the drinks to be sure none of the lingerers doctored any, but she heard enough to figure someone had gone in. A guess that got confirmed when a dripping wet Twist carried in an equally soaked and seriously smashed party girl who was screaming with glee and clinging to Twist almost as tightly as her now transparent cocktail dress clung to her breasts.

Given the shit-eating grin that spread across Twist’s face as he dripped his way through the bar with the woman in his arms, he didn’t much mind.

Later, after she’d finished closing down the bar, Quinn had counted her blessings on avoiding another confrontation and scurried out of the resort. Despite his promise, Jasper had remained a no show. All that did was ensure he dominated her thoughts all night.

And she had not one clue what to do about it.

Well, that wasn’t entirely true. What she wanted was to find out where he was staying, slip into his bed, and follow up on that kiss he hit her with. Sure, she’d probably get a gun to her head for the effort—sneaking up on a SEAL was a baaaaaad idea any day of the week. And that was before she figured in the foreknowledge that Jasper slept with his weapon close to hand, much less the level of anger he clearly bore for her. But the kind of sex she’d had with Jasper back in the day was worth more than a little risk for a repeat.

Quinn huffed out a breath that fogged up her window. Truthfully, appealing as it always was, even the idea of climbing Jasper like a tree was too exhausting to move beyond thought.

He could do all the work.

Mmm. Jasper definitely redefined the benefits of lying back and taking it. Good things happened when he did all the work. Amazing things.

Spectacular things.

She rolled her head sideways and stared out the fogged-over window.

That was the exhaustion talking. And the year-long loneliness. And, yeah, the fear. Fear she’d managed to compartmentalize and ignore while she was working and with Jasper to occupy her neuroses. If she were honest with herself—and she always tried to be—she’d admit what she really wanted was to crawl into Jasper, pull him around her like a shield, and let all the crap aimed her way land on his formidable shoulders.

But that was weakness that left you vulnerable, and she’d been vulnerable enough for two lifetimes. She wasn’t a woman who relied on others to solve her problems. She’d walked away from everyone she’d ever known in order to claim her independence. She’d be damned to surrender it now, not even to Jasper, who she’d once loved beyond reason. No, she’d handle her own crises as she had since the day she’d left the commune—and for a long time before then too.

For a place that’d professed to be all about unity and sharing and togetherness, in reality, her parent’s home was a place where everyone followed one man’s dictates. And if you went up against him, well, then you were truly on you own.

Which was just fine by Quinn.

Pushing aside troubling memories, Quinn lifted her head to glance out the windshield and up. What possessed her to take a third-floor rental? Now she had to muster the strength to get up three flights of stairs. What were the chances anyone was still awake to notice if she crawled her way up the steps instead? More importantly, did she care?

She did not. “But there is something to be said for dignity,” she mumbled as she bumped open the car door. Bracing, she climbed out, dragging her bag over the console from the passenger seat. She caught her breath when pain shot up her weary legs before resolutely setting her boots toward the open stairwell that was only mildly shaded by an emaciated palm tree.

The full moon was tinted red. “Hunter’s moon,” she whispered, shuffling toward the stairwell with her neck craned back to take it in. Exhausted as she was, she forced herself to take a walk along the water’s edge after closing down the bar in an effort to phase out some clutter from her mind. It hadn’t worked, but given her life expectancy at the moment, it seemed wise not to pass on such luxuries as a moonlight walk on the beach. Even if she took that walk alone.

Even if the moon was blood red.

It bled out into the dark sprawl of the night’s sky. If Quinn were of a more fanciful bent, she might’ve taken it as a bloody warning of things to come.

If bloody things were to come, she supposed Hibiscus Court Apartments were as likely as place to find them as any. True to his word, Clancy had handed her a phone number yesterday, and Quinn found her way into a vacancy. It wasn’t as convenient to the resort as the Fourway in the center of town, but she preferred it that way. Less questions to dodge and no nosy relative of that harridan, Charity, to put her on the gossip rack.

Despite the many demands on her time and attention and the importance of the Thornquist wedding to her burgeoning business, Willow had insisted on helping Quinn get settled in at Hibiscus Court. She’d tag-teamed her partners, too, so that there were few moments when Quinn was left to herself and thus (or so Quinn figured Willow to have silently reasoned) have the chance to rethink her offer to bail out the Barefoot Brides partners from their mixologist quandary. Willow needn’t have worried. Quinn wasn’t about to repay her kindness by mucking things up for them at the last minute.

Though if the Russian mob showed up, all bets were off.

Quinn had met Willow’s partners, Gussie and Ariel, when she’d swung by their office for a very early morning meeting. She’d been instantly struck by the bond between the three women who ran Barefoot Brides Destination Weddings. And that was before each lady had taken time throughout the myriad last-minute crises leading up to the rehearsal dinner to help get Quinn settled into temporary life on Mimosa Key and set up with whatever she needed to work her magic at the bar for the festivities. A day before, the shock of Jasper’s arrival would’ve sent her running for her SUV and fleeing for the next Key.

She knew from experience that he wouldn’t come after her.

But the ladies had made her feel unusually welcomed and wanted. She couldn’t betray that by leaving them in another lurch. There’d be plenty of chances for her to go after the wedding. She’d have to keep clear of him in the meantime, no matter her urges.

Quinn climbed the first flight of stairs and rounded the second-floor landing for the next one up. Jasper had probably been set up in one those gorgeous villas she’d caught glimpse of along the beach. No sketchy apartment complex for the defender of the American way.

What had Twist meant by “enforced leave”?

She’d only partly been joking when she’d told Jasper he looked like a poster boy. She was certain there was no more committed a soldier than him in the entire armed forces.

He’d set his team even above his wife in priority. That might seem admirable to an outsider, but as the woman who came in second place, Quinn could tell whoever asked it was a sucktastic place to wind up.

If he’d been put on enforced leave, something terrible must have happened.

It would kill Jasper not to be in the Navy anymore. His whole identity was wrapped up in being a SEAL. What could possibly have happened to jeopardize that?

Quinn took firm hold of her troublesome curiosity. Not her problem anymore, not Jasper’s career, not his trouble, and for certain, not Jasper himself.

Strange though how he’d been haunting her since she’d squeezed into that dress in Atlantic City, popping up in her thoughts while she sparred with Charity until she’d found herself using her married name. A big mistake, she now realized, one that gave advantage to Jasper, something he’d been quick to catch on to, as usual. Jasper made a living out of capitalizing on the smallest opportunities. There was power in a name and she’d given him that power by taking back his and along with it, a claim he’d made clear he was more than happy to reassert. A claim that brought with it the responsibility to get Quinn out of this mess.

I can get myself outta this mess.

Yeah, probably.

Maybe.

But the truth was having Jasper involved would make her life a helluva lot easier.

And he was there now, mere miles away, as though she’d conjured him like some badass genie. Jasper McQueen at her service. Orgasms are here, here, here, here, and here.

God, it was tempting. He was so tempting.

She hit the second landing and paused to catch a breath before starting up the final flight.

Why did he have to kiss her? She’d been holding her own, holding him off, until he’d laid hands and mouth on her. She huffed out another breath. Lord love a duck, but she loved Jasper’s mouth. The man knew what he was doing, it had to be said. She loved the taste of it, always had and she’d bet always would, and leapt at the chance to have it again.

She’d certainly leapt on him. She shook her head with self-admonishment. Couldn’t do that again. Give Jasper the smallest foothold, and he’d take the whole mountain. It was how he’d been trained. It was how he’d been bred. And Quinn knew her long sexual dry spell gave him one hell of a foothold.

Topping the last flight, she headed to her apartment at the end of the walkway.

He’d been so pissed at her tonight. She’d seen him angry before but never like that, and never at her. Yeah, okay, so maybe he had cause, but she did too. It wasn’t like he hadn’t given her more than enough reason to go. His deployments left her on her own all the time. If she was going to be alone, then she wanted to do it on the road, moving onward, heading toward a new gig, a new place, a new adventure, not locked up in a condo and a steady job. Even now, the thought of it made her skin crawl. She’d felt as trapped in that condo as she had at the commune and hopeless without Jasper there to remind her why she’d given so much of herself up to be with him. Learning he hadn’t updated the Navy to the fact that he’d been married had been the last blow. She’d trapped herself in staid civilian life for his benefit, and he couldn’t even be bothered to update his marital status!

It didn’t strike her until much later how out-of-character this was for a man like Jasper, a man for whom dotting Is and crossing Ts was a matter of pride and honor. Jasper got things right or people died, and that kind of pressure stretch into his off-duty life as well when he’d head out at a moment’s notice if one of his teammates needed him.

She only wished she mattered to him half as much as the Navy and his men did.

Quinn keyed open the door and let herself into the small apartment she’d call home for the next few days. With a rec from Clancy and his implied promise that she’d passed his security check, the manager hadn’t pressed Quinn for more than her ID and a cash deposit. That hit had hurt her weakening finances. She’d have to find some way to access her bank account or pray the wedding tips were better than anticipated, especially if she had to bail on Barefoot Bay right after the wedding.

Hibiscus Court did its best to live up to its name in the décor, if the saturation of flowers theme was anything to go on. Quinn’s apartment featured hot house plants. Like the overstuffed armchair, the couch sported a pattern of blooming jasmine with a print on the wall behind it of an African violet in full bloom.

Show off.

Quinn didn’t consider herself a flowery kind of woman, but she wouldn’t deny being drawn to some of the more colorful blooms. The deep purple of African violets made them one of her favorites, so the print cinched her decision.

She locked the deadbolt behind her—the first major selling point for the rental, by the way—and moved through the living area without turning on the overhead. Not like the apartment was so big she needed light to navigate it, and overheads tended to give her headaches anyway. She’d left on the light over the oven, and its soft illumination was enough that she could skirt the cheap coffee table and armchair to get to the short hallway leading to the bed and bathroom.

She eyed the bathroom, but was too tired to do the whole remove-makeup-and-wash-face thing. Her pores would have to take one for the team. Quinn stumbled into the bedroom, tossing her bag blindly to land next to the nightstand on the near side of the queen-sized bed and was seconds from dropping onto the mattress when a low voice came at her through the dark.

“Did you really expect to escape so easily?”

Instant terror rushed through Quinn, eradicating her exhaustion with a tremendous surge of flight or fight.

They found her.

She flung herself back from the bed, tripping over her own feet as she groped blindly for the door in the dark. She could feel a large body pursue her through the small room. A vibe of menace crawled along her skin. She screamed, high and shrill, when his hand gripped her arm so tight, she thought it’d come off right then and there.

Her knee thrust up, but he expertly dodged and yanked her back to the bed with a wordless growl. “Leave! Go!” she yelled, hoping, praying, someone in the sleepy, quiet apartment complex would hear and call the cops, call anyone for fuck’s everlasting sake, before this guy killed her or knocked her out and stashed her in a trunk for the long trip back to Jersey for worse.

He tossed her on the bed with ease, a move that would’ve made her marvel if she wasn’t so afraid, and promptly climbed on top of her. Immediately, she bucked, so pumped up on adrenaline, she managed to bounce them both up in the bed.

“Stop it,” he ordered as they struggled, gruff and seemingly unruffled by her efforts, efforts that were quickly draining her of strength.

Get off!” she screamed into his shadowed face. He pinned her hands to either side of her head. She felt his hips shift between her legs and new shoots of panic sprung up inside her gut.

Oh God, oh God, she couldn’t shift him. She wasn’t strong enough to get free.

She wasn’t strong enough for this.

“Please don’t kill me,” she pleaded, tears streaking down her cheeks. “I didn’t see anything, I swear. I won’t say a word. Please, please don’t hurt me.”

The full weight of him pressed into her as his hands moved to cradle her head. “Quinn, it’s all right. It’s me. You’re safe.”

“Please don’t kill me,” she begged again.

A strangled sound of frustration escaped his throat. “I’m not gonna kill you, honey. Take a breath. You’re okay. I’m gonna make it all okay.”

Slowly, the familiarity of his form and voice finally penetrated her fear. “Jasper?” she breathed.

“Yeah, babe. I’m here.”

Jasper was here.

Thank God, Jasper was here.

The rush of relief was nearly as debilitating as the terror that’d preceded it. Which had to be why she grabbed his wrists in an unholy vise and blurted out, “They’re going to kill me, Jasp.”

He eased up slightly and leaned his forehead against hers so that, even in the dark, she could see the intense gleam of conviction in his eyes. “Nobody’s going to hurt you, sweetheart. I promise.”

His words settled deep within her, spurring her arms to circle his shoulders as she burrowed her face in his throat. He shifted them on their sides, slid a leg between her thighs, linking them together, and pulled her into him as Quinn trembled with full body shivers.

She was taking this. She needed this. She could pull up her bitch pants and lace up her shit-stomping boots later. Right now, she was hiding out in Jasper’s strong and more than capable arms.

God, she loved his arms.

She could barely believe he was here.

Hang on. Jasper was here.

She reared back and smacked his shoulder. “Are you crazy?!”

His resigned exhale feathered her hair. “Knew that was too good to last.”

“What in the world made you think it was a good idea to break into my apartment and lie in wait for me?! Wait, scratch that. What in the holy hell are you doing here?!”

His hold on her tightened, something she hadn’t thought possible. “I told you we weren’t finished.”

She smacked him again. “You scared the shit out of me!”

“Quinn…”

“Don’t you ‘Quinn’ me in that tone of voice, Jasper McQueen! I am not one of your soldiers. I do not jump when you say so and ask how high on the way up.”

“We’re sailors, not soldiers. And no, you jump into my arms the second I touch you.”

“I do not.”

“You practically burrowed under me.”

She snorted. “Don’t flatter yourself.”

“Don’t have to when you do shit like that.”

“Cocky.”

Quinn gasped when he grinded his rock hard thigh between her legs.

“Yeah, but you like me that way.” Wry amusement tinted his voice.

“I can’t believe you’re getting off on this.” She pushed to get free, and when that didn’t budge him, reached back to pry his hands off. He snatched hers up and gave them a squeeze.

“Baby, I got you squirming under me, no training in the world is gonna keep me soft.”

“I thought you were here to kill me!”

His jaw hardened. Any hint of amusement was gone when he replied, “Yeah, let’s talk about that.”

Like that was going to happen. “Not on your life,” she vowed.

“It’s your life I’m worried about. And don’t bother bullshitting me. You’re as worried as I am, and I know this because you told me.”

Dammit, that was true. She’d been so relieved it was Jasper in her room and not Thug One or Thug Two (or someone worse), she’d nearly told him everything.

Score one for subconscious self-preservation.

“Let me go,” she demanded.

“You gave that to me,” Jasper reminded her unnecessarily, ignoring her demand. “And I don’t care if you were scared outta your mind when you did. Finally, you’re telling me some truth, and now you’re going to give me the rest of it.”

That raised her hackles again. “Why? Because you say so?”

“Yes!” he roared, ratcheting from zero to sixty in a scorching hot minute. “I have some fucking significant experience with this shit, Quinn. Maybe, for a change, you could follow my goddamn lead!”

“I’ve followed enough for one lifetime and have been doing fine without you since I stopped doing that.” That was more of a lie than she’d like to admit, but she sure as hell wasn’t adding that to her list of confessions.

“Sure. You did so fine without me, how come, a second ago, you were begging me not to kill you?”

Crap, he had her there too. “We’ve been through this already. It’s none of your business.”

“Yeah, we’ve been through this already, but you don’t seem to be getting a clue.”

Her eyes narrowed. “Excuse me?”

He shook her by the shoulders and didn’t bother to be gentle about it. “Who are you so afraid of, Quinn?”

The moment her eyeballs settled back in their sockets, Quinn reared up into his face and carefully enunciated, “It’s none. Of. Your. Business.”

“God damn it,” he growled and then his mouth was on hers, and her tongue was against his, and she sank back into his heat and the flavor that was only ever Jasper. Her fingers dug into his shirt where it pulled across his back. The leather straps of his holster dragged against the tops of her breasts. She whimpered as her nipples raised up against the friction.

Quinn lifted her outside leg and hooked it over his hip. She dug her heel into the small of his back and used it as leverage to push up and get even closer, so close, his eyelashes brushed her nose when he lifted up and repositioned his mouth to take hers again, rough and deep and wet and, God, it was Jasper, and she couldn’t get enough, she would never get enough of him.

His fingers plunged into her hair to drag her head back as though he couldn’t stop their kiss under his own power. “Fine,” he said in a gravelly voice that shot vibrations through her sex. “Keep your secrets. I only came here to fuck you.”

And like that, all her desire for him went poof, as though she’d been doused in cold water. Jasper never spoke to her that way—he never spoke to anyone that way, at least not when she’d been around to hear. Shock locked up her frame. “Wha—?” she barely managed. “What did you say to me?”

“You heard me.” He bent to kiss her again; she shoved a blocking hand between their mouths.

“You are out of your mind if you think you can say that and expect me to keep on keeping on. How dare you!”

His grip on her hair bordered on uncomfortable. “I dare, Quinn. I’ll dare anything until you tell me what I want to know. If that means I have to fuck it outta you—” He shrugged. “I’ve done far worse to get intel.”

She didn’t want to think about what that “worse” might entail. “You are such a son of a bitch,” she hissed. “Get off me!”

Instead he rolled them so he was on top again, which Quinn felt was a clear enough, if unacceptable, answer. “Don’t bother pretending I’m alone in this. A year apart hasn’t done jack to weaken what’s between us. If anything, it’s made it stronger.

“You might not want me here, and you might not want to admit you need my help,” and here his hand dipped from her back to slide over her hardened nipple. “But you sure as hell want me in your body, and baby, you don’t have to ask twice.”

“I didn’t ask at all! You jumped me when I walked in the door!”

“I waited for you! Again! Jesus, so fucking stupid, I waited for you, again. Once McBain cut us loose for the night, I headed back to Junonia to talk to you, just talk, Quinn, because I can’t stand that I haven’t known where you’ve been for a whole fucking year. And then, suddenly, you’re here the same goddamn weekend I am, and scared to death someone is coming to kill you and you still—won’t—fucking—talk to me!”

He lurched off her and was at the door before she caught up. The instinct to go after him was too strong to question, even after what he’d said and done. He couldn’t leave, not like this. Not after what she’d seen in his face.

Quinn wrapped her arms around his waist, knowing there was no way she could hold him back if he was set on going, only sure that there was something very, very important here that she would lose forever if he walked out that door.

She wouldn’t be able to bear that. Not again.

He jerked once in her hold, his hands coming to hers to set them aside.

“Jasper,” she whispered.

His head slumped forward, chin to chest, but at least he’d stopped moving.

“The bar was dark when I got there,” he continued as though he’d never stopped. “And you were gone a-fucking-gain. So I interrupted McBain gettin’ it on with his wife, and once he was done deciding whether or not to kill me for it, he explained who I was to his wife. She told me you’d shacked up here at Hibiscus Court.” His hands tightened on hers, silently communicating how he felt about her new digs. “I hotwired one of the resort’s cars and shot over here, and when your car wasn’t in the lot, I broke in to wait for you. Again.”

Quinn rested her forehead in the groove between his shoulder blades. “You did all that so you could fuck me?”

“Jesus, Quinn, no.” He spun around, so quick, always so swift and able, that now her forehead rested on his cut pec. His arms slid back around her waist, and she couldn’t stop the soul deep sigh that escaped her lips. They’d always fit together like this, as if the detailed grooves and hard planes of his body were made expressly to accommodate the soft curves and lush valleys of hers, and she’d been so empty without him all year.

“I did it all to find you.” He titled her head up and kissed her with a painful tenderness. “I’ve missed you, babe,” he admitted, mouth hovering over hers, so close she could taste the words. His lips coasted up and over the curve of her cheek to buss her temple. “More than you could ever know.”

Her heart shattered and its pieces crackled in her voice when she murmured, “Honey,” and gripped the sides of his neck to pull him back down to her. “I missed you too.”

Writer, singer editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities straight is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense. Her debut romantic suspense novel Wild on the Rocks is now available. Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on various social media via @kierstenkrum.

Wild Times From Wild on the Rocks: An Excerpt

29 Apr

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

WildOnTheRocks-KindleWorldsSize-PROMO

Come on. Go a little wild! Click on image to buy.

It’s been Theme Week here at Lady Smut. Each day this week, one of the Lady Smut bloggers dove deep into the themes and aspects of my debut romantic suspense novel, Wild on the Rocks.

On Monday, I talked about why Navy SEALs turn my crank, Tuesday, Alexa Day chatted about the joys and pleasures to be found at the beach–with or without a lover. Wednesday, Elizabeth Shore looked at the pros and cons of reuniting with a lover. And yesterday, Madeline Iva unpacked all the crazy that comes with a Vegas wedding.

Wow! Now that’s a wild week!

Nothing left but to unpack a steamy, emotional excerpt from Wild on the Rocks to give all you lovely Lady Smutters a taste of the good stuff!

But wait, THERE’S MORE.

Read all the way to the end and leave a comment to be entered to win a free copy of Wild on the Rocks!

Buckle up!

Alcohol gives you infinite patience for stupidity.

—Sammy Davis, Jr.

“Did you really expect to escape so easily?”

Instant terror rushed through Quinn, eradicating her exhaustion with a tremendous surge of flight or fight.

They found her.

She flung herself back from the bed, tripping over her own feet as she groped blindly for the door in the dark. She could feel a large body pursue her through the small room. A vibe of menace crawled along her skin. She screamed, high and shrill, when his hand gripped her arm so tight, she thought it’d come off right then and there.

Her knee thrust up, but he expertly dodged and yanked her back to the bed with a wordless growl. “Leave! Go!” she yelled, hoping, praying, someone in the sleepy, quiet apartment complex would hear and call the cops, call anyone for fuck’s everlasting sake, before this guy killed her or knocked her out and stashed her in a trunk for the long trip back to Jersey for worse.

He tossed her on the bed with ease, a move that would’ve made her marvel if she wasn’t so afraid, and promptly climbed on top of her. Immediately, she bucked, so pumped up on adrenaline, she managed to bounce them both up in the bed.

“Stop it,” he ordered as they struggled, gruff and seemingly unruffled by her efforts, efforts that were quickly draining her of strength.

Get off!” she screamed into his shadowed face. He pinned her hands to either side of her head. She felt his hips shift between her legs and new shoots of panic sprung up inside her gut.

Oh God, oh God, she couldn’t shift him. She wasn’t strong enough to get free.

She wasn’t strong enough for this.

“Please don’t kill me,” she pleaded, tears streaking down her cheeks. “I didn’t see anything, I swear. I won’t say a word. Please, please don’t hurt me.”

The full weight of him pressed into her as his hands moved to cradle her head. “Quinn, it’s all right. It’s me. You’re safe.”

“Please don’t kill me,” she begged again.

A strangled sound of frustration escaped his throat. “I’m not gonna kill you, honey. Take a breath. You’re okay. I’m gonna make it all okay.”

Slowly, the familiarity of his form and voice finally penetrated her fear. “Jasper?” she breathed.

“Yeah, babe. I’m here.”

Jasper was here.

Thank God, Jasper was here.

The rush of relief was nearly as debilitating as the terror that’d preceded it. Which had to be why she grabbed his wrists in an unholy vise and blurted out, “They’re going to kill me, Jasp.”

He eased up slightly and leaned his forehead against hers so that, even in the dark, she could see the intense gleam of conviction in his eyes. “Nobody’s going to hurt you, sweetheart. I promise.”

His words settled deep within her, spurring her arms to circle his shoulders as she burrowed her face in his throat. He shifted them on their sides, slid a leg between her thighs, linking them together, and pulled her into him as Quinn trembled with full body shivers.

She was taking this. She needed this. She could pull up her bitch pants and lace up her shit-stomping boots later. Right now, she was hiding out in Jasper’s strong and more than capable arms.

God, she loved his arms.

She could barely believe he was here.

Hang on. Jasper was here.

She reared back and smacked his shoulder. “Are you crazy?!”

His resigned exhale feathered her hair. “Knew that was too good to last.”

“What in the world made you think it was a good idea to break into my apartment and lie in wait for me?! Wait, scratch that. What in the holy hell are you doing here?!”

His hold on her tightened, something she hadn’t thought possible. “I told you we weren’t finished.”

She smacked him again. “You scared the shit out of me!”

“Quinn…”

“Don’t you ‘Quinn’ me in that tone of voice, Jasper McQueen! I am not one of your soldiers. I do not jump when you say so and ask how high on the way up.”

“We’re sailors, not soldiers. And no, you jump into my arms the second I touch you.”

“I do not.”

“You practically burrowed under me.”

She snorted. “Don’t flatter yourself.”

“Don’t have to when you do shit like that.”

“Cocky.”

Quinn gasped when he grinded his rock hard thigh between her legs.

“Yeah, but you like me that way.”

“I can’t believe you’re getting off on this.” She pushed to get free, and when that didn’t budge him, reached back to pry his hands off. He snatched hers up and gave them a squeeze.

“Baby, I got you squirming under me, no training in the world is gonna keep me soft.”

“I thought you were here to kill me!”

His jaw hardened. Any hint of amusement was gone when he replied, “Yeah, let’s talk about that.”

Like that was going to happen. “Not on your life,” she vowed.

“It’s your life I’m worried about. And don’t bother bullshitting me. You’re as worried as I am, and I know this because you told me.”

Dammit, that was true. She’d been so relieved it was Jasper in her room and not Thug One or Thug Two (or someone worse), she’d nearly told him everything.

Score one for subconscious self-preservation.

“Let me go,” she demanded.

“You gave that to me,” Jasper reminded her unnecessarily, ignoring her demand. “And I don’t care if you were scared outta your mind when you did. Finally, you’re telling me some truth, and now you’re going to give me the rest of it.”

That raised her hackles again. “Why? Because you say so?”

“Yes!” he roared, ratcheting from zero to sixty in a scorching hot minute. “I have some fucking significant experience with this shit, Quinn. Maybe, for a change, you could follow my goddamn lead!”

“I’ve followed enough for one lifetime and have been doing fine without you since I stopped doing that.” That was more of a lie than she’d like to admit, but she sure as hell wasn’t adding that to her list of confessions.

“Sure. You did so fine without me, how come, a second ago, you were begging me not to kill you?”

Crap, he had her there too. “We’ve been through this already. It’s none of your business.”

“Yeah, we’ve been through this already, but you don’t seem to be getting a clue.”

Her eyes narrowed. “Excuse me?”

He shook her by the shoulders and didn’t bother to be gentle about it. “Who are you so afraid of, Quinn?”

The moment her eyeballs settled back in their sockets, Quinn reared up into his face and carefully enunciated, “It’s none. Of. Your. Business.”

“God damn it,” he growled and then his mouth was on hers, and her tongue was against his, and she sank back into his heat and the flavor that was only ever Jasper. Her fingers dug into his shirt where it pulled across his back. The leather straps of his holster dragged against the tops of her breasts. She whimpered as her nipples raised up against the friction.

Quinn lifted her outside leg and hooked it over his hip. She dug her heel into the small of his back and used it as leverage to push up and get even closer, so close, his eyelashes brushed her nose when he lifted up and repositioned his mouth to take hers again, rough and deep and wet and, God, it was Jasper, and she couldn’t get enough, she would never get enough of him.

His fingers plunged into her hair to drag her head back as though he couldn’t stop their kiss under his own power. “Fine,” he said in a gravelly voice that shot vibrations through her sex. “Keep your secrets. I only came here to fuck you.”

And like that, all her desire for him went poof, as though she’d been doused in cold water. Jasper never spoke to her that way—he never spoke to anyone that way, at least not when she’d been around to hear. Shock locked up her frame. “Wha—?” she barely managed. “What did you say to me?”

“You heard me.” He bent to kiss her again; she shoved a blocking hand between their mouths.

“You are out of your mind if you think you can say that and expect me to keep on keeping on. How dare you!”

His grip on her hair bordered on uncomfortable. “I dare, Quinn. I’ll dare anything until you tell me what I want to know. If that means I have to fuck it outta you—” He shrugged. “I’ve done far worse to get intel.”

She didn’t want to think about what that “worse” might entail. “You are such a son of a bitch,” she hissed. “Get off me!”

Instead he rolled them so he was on top again, which Quinn felt was a clear enough, if unacceptable, answer. “Don’t bother pretending I’m alone in this. A year apart hasn’t done jack to weaken what’s between us. If anything, it’s made it stronger.

“You might not want me here, and you might not want to admit you need my help,” and here his hand dipped from her back to slide over her hardened nipple. “But you sure as hell want me in your body, and baby, you don’t have to ask twice.”

“I didn’t ask at all! You jumped me when I walked in the door!”

“I waited for you! Again! Jesus, so fucking stupid, I waited for you, again. Once McBain cut us loose for the night, I headed back to Junonia to talk to you, just talk, Quinn, because I can’t stand that I haven’t known where you’ve been for a whole fucking year. And then, suddenly, you’re here the same goddamn weekend I am, and scared to death someone is coming to kill you and you still—won’t—fucking—talk to me!”

He lurched off her and was at the door before she caught up. The instinct to go after him was too strong to question, even after what he’d said and done. He couldn’t leave, not like this. Not after what she’d seen in his face.

Quinn wrapped her arms around his waist, knowing there was no way she could hold him back if he was set on going, only sure that there was something very, very important here that she would lose forever if he walked out that door.

She wouldn’t be able to bear that. Not again.

He jerked once in her hold, his hands coming to hers to set them aside.

“Jasper,” she whispered.

His head slumped forward, chin to chest, but at least he’d stopped moving.

“The bar was dark when I got there,” he continued as though he’d never stopped. “And you were gone a-fucking-gain. So I interrupted McBain gettin’ it on with his wife, and once he was done deciding whether or not to kill me for it, he explained who I was to his wife. She told me you’d shacked up here at Hibiscus Court.” His hands tightened on hers, silently communicating how he felt about her new digs. “I hotwired one of the resort’s cars and shot over here, and when your car wasn’t in the lot, I broke in to wait for you. Again.”

Quinn rested her forehead in the groove between his shoulder blades. “You did all that so you could fuck me?”

“Jesus, Quinn, no.” He spun around, so quick, always so swift and able, that now her forehead rested on his cut pec. His arms slid back around her waist, and she couldn’t stop the soul deep sigh that escaped her lips. They’d always fit together like this, as if the detailed grooves and hard planes of his body were made expressly to accommodate the soft curves and lush valleys of hers, and she’d been so empty without him all year.

“I did it all to find you.” He titled her head up and kissed her with a painful tenderness. “I’ve missed you, babe,” he admitted, mouth hovering over hers, so close she could taste the words. His lips coasted up and over the curve of her cheek to buss her temple. “More than you could ever know.”

Her heart shattered and its pieces crackled in her voice when she murmured, “Honey,” and gripped the sides of his neck to pull him back down to her. “I missed you too.”

 

Get your copy of Wild on the Rocks today!

If Life Isn’t a Beach, It Probably Should Be

26 Apr
Just another day at the beach, right?

May all your seaside adventures work out just like this one.

By Alexa Day

I’m enjoying a transitional period between the last job and the next job. Actually, it’s more accurate to say that I’m enjoying it now. I was not having such a good time with it last week.

Anyway, now that I’ve lightened up a little, I’ve realized that this brief (I hope) interval might be the ideal time for a trip to the beach. Sure, I could go whenever I wanted, strictly speaking, even when I was not in the transitional period. But now, I can go on a weekday morning, during the school year. That’s pretty close to perfect.

I’ve read that most people are drawn to the beach because our bodies are mostly water. The soothing sound of the waves does have a special pull. There’s a stillness on an empty beach, a sense that the world has distilled itself to this place where the water meets the earth. Because of all that, the beach is a great place to work. Indeed, Yorktown Beach, Buckroe Beach, and even Virginia Beach probably prevented me from sliding into insanity during law school. I found myself rescued by the knowledge that I could slip away after (cough, instead of, cough) class to sit on a blanket with a stack of notes or books.

If the serenity of solitude isn’t the right solution, though, the beach is still seductive.

I’ve been camping on the beach with a lover, far from the strip and the boardwalk and all those lights and sounds. Beneath the dazzling cover of the stars, we’d just sit there and watch and listen. We were together where the sky met the sea and the sea met the sand, looking out toward the horizon. It’s hard to be in a place like that without feeling tiny. Just two people on a huge planet. Just two people who happened to find each other and share a blanket. Perhaps across an ocean from two other people staring toward us and thinking the same thing.

The beach is a little different for a single girl, in my experience, but no less awe-inspiring.

I don’t generally cotton to the big beachside resort. I have family in Jamaica, and my experience of the island beach makes me want something a little more organic, I guess. But being a local on a busy island beach presents a beautiful blend of society and solitude. Parked on a chair or a blanket with the beloved beach read, I have enjoyed many a sunny afternoon watching good-looking men pass by, on their way to a bar or a boat trip or whatever. Sunbathing is kind of a spectator sport, right? A quick peek over one’s book to check out the traffic, and then back down to the story at hand. Personally, I like to be near the lifeguard. They’re not supposed to be paying attention to that innocuous person on the blanket below them, which frees me to leer at them to my heart’s content.

And let’s remember the beachside bar. Tough to pick a favorite, right? Such friendly places, filled with people who’ve spent the whole day relaxing near the water. It’s a great place to meet that guy who strolled by the blanket a while ago. I have to admit that I’ve never found the lifeguard bar, but I know there must be one. Maybe someday, when I’m not really trying, I’ll stumble across it just in time for happy hour, and I’ll finally get to see what those tanned, age-inappropriate fellows talk about when they’re not way up on the chair.

A girl’s got to have goals, after all.

Whether you actually make it to the beach this year or not, you will want to secure a copy of my colleague Kiersten Hallie Krum’s novel, WILD ON THE ROCKS, posthaste. It’s got most of what we want from the beach — expertly made cocktails,  a super-hot Navy SEAL, and loads of excitement. And you will not have to deal with the giant annoyance of tracked-in sand. Now you tell me what’s not to love about something like that.

Go get yours and then try to get by some water!

And follow Lady Smut.

Navy SEALs: Why They Turn My Crank

25 Apr

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

SEAL famous photo

One of the most famous photos of an anonymous SEAL.

It’s no secret that Navy SEALs are their own subgenre of Romancelandia. Among the cops and firefighters and hockey and military heroes, SEALs stand out as a special kind of alpha hero known to really turn a readers crank. An Amazon search for “navy SEAL hero” brings up a cavalcade of options, series and stand alone romance novels. (And that’s without delving into the DVD queue, which you don’t want to do unless you’re prepared to spend money. I took a look for this post and bought 3 documentaries before I could blink.)

So what is it about these modern-day warriors that makes them such compelling heroes?

They’re buff. They’re strong. They hunt down evil terrorists. That seems to sum it up pretty good, right?

navy-seals

But it goes deeper than that. It takes a certain mindset to be that excellent at that difficult a job. A mindset that compels a man to subject himself to the brutal, torturous training it takes to become a member of these special forces. (So far, no women have been allowed to enter the training to become a SEAL. It is one of the armed forces last hold outs against women participants.) Recently on Facebook, a reader told me her fourteen-year-old son was so committed to becoming a Navy SEAL, he’d already completed Navy cadet training along with other accomplishments meant to prepare him for the elite training ahead of him. I was instantly struck with admiration for this young man for being so committed and such a young age to reaching a goal that would demand a great amount of emotional and physical strength.

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The fact is, on a whole, SEALs are the epitome of an alpha hero. Physically strong, mentally tough, loyal, protective, dedicated and ripe with sexual prowess. (Oh come, that last one has to be a given, right?) SEALs hit the top of the zeitgeist when SEAL Team 6 took down Osama bin Laden. Suddenly, these clandestine warriors were front page in electronic ticker tape neon.

If I had the good fortune of living in proximity of the Coronado Naval Base where SEALs train, I would so be a SEAL groupie. I know this about myself, I embrace this about myself, even while my mental lip curls with disdain at the very idea. But it true, men who are SEALs seriously turn my crank. I’m a tad worried about my upcoming tour of Coronado during the RWA national conference in July. Restraints may be needed. (Kidding. Sorta.)

And yet, even more than significantly attractions to the archetype, I feel seriously intimidated. While I’ve never knowingly met a SEAL (it’s not like they advertise their status), I’m sure if I did, I’d say something ridiculously stupid because, hello? Intimidated. Because–Hoo. Shah.

SEALs in BUDS

Men in the middle of BUD/S, the first part of SEAL training. Also known as Hell Week.

Look, at their core, these men are just that–men. Some of them are good, some of them are assholes. Some of them are faithful, some of them dick around on their spouses. Some are incredible fathers; some never pay child support. They’re not archetypes–however we might use them as such in Romancelandia–they’re human beings who, through some remarkable manner of conviction, discipline, and perseverance, have become the premier warriors on the planet. They deal with some of the worst, most dangerous situations known to man. “We do today what others won’t, so tomorrow we’ll do what others can’t,” they reportedly say. And that’s damn heroic.

navy SEAL in theatre

Romantic heroes who are SEALs have turned my crank ever since I first started reading Suzanne Brockmann’s Navy SEAL Team 16 novels, back when that series was new and un-put-down-able. When I was asked to write a book set in New York Times bestselling author Roxanne St. Claire’s Barefoot Bay Kindle World, I knew two things right away: I wanted to write a reunion romance (one of my two favorite tropes in Romancelandia) and I wanted to write a SEAL hero.

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Click on image to buy!

In WILD ON THE ROCKS, I wanted Lieutenant Jasper McQueen to be that epitome of an alpha hero–strong, reliable, intelligent, admired by his peers and superiors, responsible to a fault–and have his core sense of self torn apart when the love of his life leaves him–only to, a year later, after personal and professional tragedy strikes, find her again in the last place he expected to find her: Barefoot Bay.

To discover what happens next, download a copy of WILD ON THE ROCKS!

Look! A blurb!

Wild on the Road

Driven by wanderlust and insatiable curiosity, Quinn Forrester views every new gig for her mixologist business as another chance for adventure. Until the night she wanders down the wrong hallway and witnesses a mob murder. After a week on the run, lack of funds and few options land Quinn in Barefoot Bay where she takes a job tending bar at the swanky Casa Blanca resort…and hopes no wise guys show up to make her sleep with the fishes. But nothing whacks a low profile like having your Navy SEAL ex-husband walk through the door—especially when he’s the love of your life you left behind.

Wild on the Beach

Discovering his restless ex-wife at Casa Blanca—and still going by his name—is enough to drive Lieutenant Commander Jasper McQueen wild. When she ran out on their marriage, Quinn left him a broken man. Now with his career in jeopardy and his sexy ex-wife at hand, Jasper is ready to chuck responsibility and submerse himself in a hedonistic affair—all sex, zero emotions—with the woman he won’t forgive and can never forget. And this time, when they’re done, it’ll be Jasper who does the leaving.

Wild on the Rocks

But a mob enforcer has tracked Quinn to Barefoot Bay. With her days numbered, Jasper may be her only shot at living through the night—if Quinn can get him to believe in her one last time.

Do you like military heroes? Do you find yourself drawn to one particular branch or another? What kind of hero turns *your* crank? Hit up the comments with your choice and I’ll choose one winner to receive a copy of WILD ON THE ROCKS (Kindle only).

Follow Lady Smut. We find all kinds of ways to turn your crank.

Writer, singer editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities straight is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense. Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Tumblr via @kierstenkrum.

Sekrit Project No More

4 Apr

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

For months now, I’ve been posting on Facebook and The Twitter snippets about my #SekritProject, partly as a way to publicize an upcoming project I was not yet cleared to speak about publicly, and partly as a means of accountability to finish the damn project. It worked!

Well now, I’m thrilled to be able to announce that my debut novel, Wild on the Rocks, will be published on April 14th as part of the launch of New York Times bestselling author Roxanne St. Claire’s Barefoot Bay Kindle Worlds!

red head head tiltBut wait! THERE’S MORE!

Today is the official cover reveal day for Wild on the Rocks on Roxanne St. Claire’s Facebook page.

BUT we’ve decided to give all you lovely Lady Smutters a first look!

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Bet I know what you’re all thinking right now…

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I KNOW!

I’ll be on Roxanne St. Claire’s Facebook page all day today (that’s Monday for any of you reading this post later in the week), answering questions about Wild on the Rocks and Barefoot Bay. That’s where you’ll also find a description of Wild on the Rocks to wet your whistle until release day in less than two weeks.

Back in February, I had a chance to feature Roxanne here at Lady Smut for a chat about her newest release in Barefoot Bay, Barefoot with a Bad Boy. Now, she’s opened up that world for other authors to create unique stories set on the fictional island of Mimosa Key, Florida. Lady Smutters are known for their inquisitive natures, so be sure to check out the press release that fills in all the details about the Barefoot Bay Kindle Worlds program.

I’m so delighted to be able to share this news with all you loyal readers. I hope you’ll stick with me and take a wild, sexy ride in Barefoot Bay. We’ll be sure to update the Lady Smut shop page with buy links as soon as they become available. In the meantime, put a tickler in your calendar for April 14th, my very first book birthday!

And follow Lady Smut. We’re the naughty kind of wild.

Singer, writer, editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities straight is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense. Her debut romantic suspense novel Wild on the Rocks will release on April 14, 2016. Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on various social media via @kierstenkrum.

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