Three Lost Souls
by K.D. West
It had seemed like a good idea at the time: step Outside down into Sundown for the afternoon with Annie, and cheer Ari up.
Ari’s last letter had been so terse, so devoid of Ari, that it had taken Timi’s breath away. When it had concluded, It’s nice that you’re feeling happier, she had thought, right, you bastard, we’ve got to do something about you, too.
So she had decided to pop down to town at the beginning of the three-day weekend. Nobody would miss them, and they could be back in time to clear the new Dean Professor Crotchett’s basilisk glare before bed check.
She had raided the last of the great O’Danan store of alcohol behind the clock in the student lounge — one bottle of moonshine and another of some rum that Jim’s pen-pal in Brazil had sent him few years earlier that was supposed to turn your hair purple. That should be entertaining, she thought.
When Annie met up with her in the entry hall, it occurred to Timi for the first time to wonder what had possessed her to ask her friend along. True, Annie had never made Ari as furious as she had Jim or as nervous as she had made Joe….
Thinking of Jim and Joe suddenly left Timi feeling as if a bucket of ice water had been poured over her, and, unbidden, images of the two of them crumpled together on the floor led to images of her mother, dead on the front lawn of their house, of Tommy Kamayama, dead in the lobby of the Metaphysics building, of Professors Levy and Nolicherri on the steps she was about to walk down, of TJ at Christmas, and Liz Garcia, and Rue Finneran, and the Li sisters and… Continue reading Changelings Preview: Three Lost Souls
Back in the Saddle
Let It Show (Let It Be #3)
by K.D. West
By the time they made it back up to their office, Helen was crying, and wasn’t sure why in the name of al-Khwarizmi that might be.
“You okay?” asked Tommy, stroking her hair.
“Yes!” Helen turned and began to snivel into his chest.
He stroked her back. “I… I shouldn’t have… outed you — us — like that. Sorry.”
“S-s-s’okay!” she howled, and wept on.
They stood there for a moment, her wailing, him trying to comfort her. Eventually, he sat in the big captain’s chair that Al had bought him a few Christmases back, and she curled in his lap. He rocked her there, kissing the top of her head, his arms wrapped tight around her.
Abandoning her body to crying, Helen tried to attack the question of what had upset her with logic — her tool of choice. Was she embarrassed that Tommy had shown their coworkers her ring? Was she embarrassed that she was married to not one but two men who, before the break, she had assumed were gay? Was she upset to admit that her former fiancé was a lying, cheating scumbag?
Unfortunately, logic had nothing to do with the matter. Feelings flooded through her, scintillescent, coruscating, opaque. Grief, shame, joy, pride…
Love. She loved Tommy. She loved Al. She loved what they had all found together. The seventeen days since they spent the night trapped in the back of Poppy, Al’s California-gold SUV, had given her proof after proof that they loved her. The commitment she had found with them felt far more solid and substantial than the one she had attempted to construct over five years with Ben.
Love is not all sunlight and butterflies. It is also a terrifying leap into the inky, lightning-filled abyss.
But at least it is a leap with someone.
Lust, Actually — A Making Movies Preview
And the previous two years, once everyone had gotten thoroughly plowed, she’d dragged Ray off, and they’d indulged in a particularly sweaty, particularly spectacular fuck.
The first time, two years before, they’d started making out in the hallway outside the bathrooms, when Glynna, the firm’s controller, had stepped out, rolled her eyes at them and snarked, as always, “Get a fucking room.”
And so, giggling, they had done just that: Continue reading Lust, Actually — A Making Movies Preview
Let It Go follows Helen, Tommy, and Al (from Let It Snow), as they reach their gold at the end of the rainbow. Their ride off into the sunset. Their polyamorous honeymoon on an idyllic tropical beach.
Unfortunately, a cloud from Helen’s past threatens to darken their paradise. Will her wonderful new relationship with her best friend Tommy and his husband Al survive the arrival of her former fiancé… and his new wife?
Namaste (Let It Go)
Hot New Titles
My Dearest Darcy…
Is Happily Ever After just the beginning?
Lizzy and Darcy are married. They’re ecstatically happy newlyweds. But a journey to London separates them.
Whatever will they do?
Write letters, of course!
In this sequel to Jane Austen’s masterpiece, read the witty, passionate correspondence between her most beloved pair as they survive separation, sisters, and surprise guests. The giddy newlyweds keep the flame alight the old-fashioned way…
All while reminding each other — and us — just what a perfectly matched couple they are.
“Clever and charming, snarky and steamy, meticulously researched with welcome appearances from real-world historical figures. Can’t wait for Volume II!” — Heather Albano, Timepiece, the Keeping Time trilogy
My dearest Darcy
I have ruined fully eighteen of these beautiful, creamy linen sheets to get even this far. You will laugh at me, I know, but I am in this my mother’s daughter, and such prodigal waste of paper offends my sense of thrift and of propriety. And for what? Because I wish to write you, but do not know how to call you.
Dearest Husband? Too formal. Dear Fitzwilliam? Too familiar. Beloved lover? Far too familiar, though very true, and I am still close enough to what little maidenly modesty I ever possessed not to wish you to open this letter in public upon such a greeting. (And I do warn you that I cannot promise that pages to come will not venture into territory that might destroy both your modesty and what little remains of mine, and so I hope that you will save the rest of this letter for perusal in some private place; you may take that for a promise or for a threat, as you will!) My own Billy? Well, I think I can imagine the mask of mortification that that salutation would provoke; I will keep that one for special, private moments, I think, when you have become too much the forbidding, proud Mr. Darcy of old and I simply wish to laugh at you.
And so My dearest Darcy it is—not only because it strikes me as particularly euphonious, but because it is true, in whole and in parts. I love your sister—my new sister—dearly, but I can say without any compunction that you are indeed the dearest Darcy to me, dearer even than myself. You are Darcy, first and foremost—I can scarcely think of you by any other name, even though it is now my own. It is the name by which I first knew you, by which I truly came to know you, and by which I have come to love you with all of my foolish, conceited heart.
Too, you are mine. Pride is a sin, as we both know to our misfortune, but I think that this is one of the things of which I am proudest: that you, virtuous, accomplished, intelligent, upright—occasionally to a fault—belong to me. And that I, vain, silly, homely and venal, belong to you, soul, mind and body.
Of your possession of my soul you must trust. Of my mind you have this evidence—that you have been gone from our bed and from our home for but four hours, and I have had scarcely a thought but of you. Kitty and Georgiana have been attempting to engage me in some games—I hope that Kitty will indulge Georgiana’s sense of play even as your sister encourages in mine some heretofore unknown vein of serious-mindedness—but I cannot be distracted from any task but of writing this, my first letter to my husband.
(Here, good my lord, is the point at which I must ask you to remember that I warned you to read this in a private place. If you failed to heed my warning, on your head be it!)
As for my body, sir, you have ample evidence of your possession of that: it has been yours to do with as it has pleased you for these past weeks and, oh, Darcy, I hope it has pleased you to take ownership so completely. It has pleased me, and pleased me again, to the point where now, having felt you within me and against me only this morning, my body weeps at your absence, desiring only to be taken—and to take—again.
(Novel-length, steamy Regency romance. Some four-letter words — used impeccably, of course.)
Everyone needs an escape!
Here are six fantastical fairytales — retellings, reimaginings, remixings — that will amuse, delight, and entrance.
- THE THRICE-PLANTED SEED by deadwoodpecker: From antiquity, the infamous lilac fairy has been near alone in her battle against evil. The defeat of the evil fairy Carabosse left Lilac drained, weary, and longing for another strong fae to help her. She enlists those she has helped to help her in turn.
- ROSE & LILY by K.D. West: When her father fails to come back from an attempt to save Princess Lily from a neighboring kingdom from the notorious and mysterious Black Knight, Rose does not hesitate to strap on her father’s old armor, and ride into the dark forest to defeat the knight and rescue the princess herself.
- LEGENDS AND LIES by Shannon Meyers: It isn’t unheard of for princesses to go missing in the Land of Legends and Lies, but the truth of these disappearances is rarely spoken of. Alexander doesn’t believe the stories told about dragons and knows more than enough about the royals to know about lies of every kind, but that doesn’t stop Princess Clara from believing or trying to prove him wrong.
- THE PRINCESS AND HER PEA by Arden Wiles: An old, bitter queen enforces strict requirements for her son, the prince, to be wed. When a princess stumbles in from a storm with her dress torn and no one accompanying her, the queen pushes her harder than any of the previous others. As she encounters the queen’s tests and her hidden pea, it becomes a not only question of can she pass, but can she overcome her notions of the prince and his past?
- UNNAMED by LegendDairy: What’s in a name? Only the power to keep your life together as Julia is learning. Just as everything in her life was going so right along comes an imp.
- THE UNEXPECTED PEA by Pumkin at 11: A search for the perfect princess leads one prince to understand the importance of listening to both heart and mind, and makes him realize that there are some things worth giving up the crown for.
(72,000 words — anthology of original fairytales and fairytale retellings; fantasy, romance)
The holidays are all about people coming together…
Here are four hot tales of holiday love and light, all set during the most wonderful time of the year!
- Let It Snow: A blizzard traps Helen, her best friend Tommy, and his husband Al in their car overnight, where they discover a path to happiness that turns out to have been as inevitable as it is unexpected. (MMF – bisexuality)
- Making Movies: Sometimes, the best movies are the ones we make ourselves… (MF – voyeurism)
- Under the Covers: Christmastime should be about being together. But Suzie and Danny have been apart for months. (MF – new adult/sneaking)
- The Visitor Celebrates: Gina’s happy to be joining her brother’s new extended family for the holidays. And even happier when they decide to give her a holiday present she’ll never forget. (FMMM – Reverse harem)
Three lost souls have won a war and been stripped of everything else – except each other
What do you do after the final battle?
Ari, Annie, and Timi have every reason to be happy. They helped defeat the invading horde from another plane and won the war.
Yet happy is the last thing any of them are feeling. After losing so much, they feel like anything but themselves. Anything but human.
And yet like many other forms of magic, these three find that love cannot be denied.
Part of the Tales of Elysium world: