Thanks so much for hosting Sea Games, Sara. I truly appreciate it.
HC Brown and I wanted to work on a couple of projects together. We both write in a number of genres, and I had this story nearing completion, so, logic kind of dictated we start with Sea Games. HC suggested a series and that became Game Play. The second book, Night Games, an MM romance on the high seas and jungle low, is due out December 17th.
Again, thanks for letting us drop by, and I hope folks enjoy this peek at Sea Games.
Brian Bowers is a man on a mission. Revenge weighs heavy on his mind. The need to punish the woman he once loved above all others falls into tatters the moment he sets eyes on her again. Fifteen years of walking on the fine edge between love and hate ends in an explosion of lust.
Patrice, sophisticated and wealthy, has her own agenda. She knows how to use her body to get what she wants. But Bowers knows how to play the game.
Set in a world of indulgence, Sea Games follows two hearts as they battle memories of the past. Will they win or lose a future together?
Through the throng of bejeweled partiers, the nasal assault of perfume and deodorants, he spotted Patrice Lampton in the corner. A sprite on a ladder-back chair throne, surrounded by her court of jesters vying for the attention being with her could bring. She sat, with her long elegant legs crossed at the knees. The electric smile on her makeup-glazed face could have powered a small town. Desire coursed through him. But for what?
Certainly not for the recognition of having been one of the many to bed her, the challenge eroded by the endless mattress party her life had become.
He visualized her body barely hidden beneath a curve-clinging red silk dress, remembered the silken touch of her pixie cut auburn hair tangled in his fingers. The musky scent of her slick, wet pussy lingered in the recesses of his mind. The taste of her hungry mouth filled his dreams.
Without warning, her hazel-eyes lowered to an unseen place, far beyond the façade of laughter and sweet aroma of champagne aimlessly fluttering in the ballroom’s thick air. She slipped a portion of her silver linked necklace to her mouth and strung it over her teeth. It was an unconscious act from another time, a place devoid of the new world around her. In that moment, he understood. His physical desire was not for the woman the public followed in the tabloids. He craved the private person, the one she once shared with him.
To regain this secret part of her would be his prize, the pinnacle no one else had scaled. When he had stolen all her deepest secrets, what little passion for life she retained, he would laugh and walk away, his need for revenge satiated.
He smoothed the jacket of his white tux and straightened the black bowtie. With a toss of his head, he gathered the arrogance he’d practiced hours on end in front of a mirror, and finally strode to her table. Her devotees moved around her with the activity of ants servicing their queen in the hope of devouring the leftover crumbs of decadence.
Patrice slowly glanced up at him, the necklace tumbling back to its rightful spot on her pale, powdered skin. No sheen painted her eyes, only the question of who this uninvited intruder might be. No doubt, his rented tux, lacking the perfect tailoring worn by her male entourage, would instantly register with her. He didn’t belong in this sphere of wealth and self-indulgence on this chartered cruise ship.
A smile wouldn’t be sufficient to stimulate her interest. The men around her fawned mouths set with fixed expressions of devotion. So he forced his face to remain stoic, bored even, as if she were the last person he would consider taking between the sheets. His heart rate kicked up a notch. He inclined his head.
“Miss Lampton, I wanted to offer this small contribution to your fundraiser. I find your efforts to stem domestic abuse most laudable.” He handed her the check, hoping his words had come out as smooth and unemotional as he’d practiced.
Without looking at the paper, she passed it to the guy standing on her left, a store mannequin of a man dressed in an immaculate black tuxedo, white shirt and rainbow tie. She raised a pencil-enhanced brow. “To whom do I express my appreciation?”
“Lancer Thompkins,” He nodded curtly and turned to leave. His nerves twisted. His gut wrenched. He’d done it!
Her curiosity would drive her insane. She would have to discover more about him. He’d studied her new persona for months and recognized her quirks, including the arched brow that had betrayed her. She’d taken the bait. He had planted the first seed.
He squared his shoulders and marched victoriously to the exit and the salty sea air.
The ship docked in Rio in a day’s time. He had until then to manipulate his way into her head. He wanted to dominate her thoughts and invade her dreams.
An older couple strolled past, arms crossed over each other’s backs, the woman’s cheek resting against her companion’s shoulder.
Guilt swept over him. His gut twisted. A new … regret … pulsed in his neck.
“That should have been us,” he whispered to no one.
And for the first time in his miserable life, he wondered if he could actually go through with his plan.
H.C. Brown: http://www.hcbrown-author.com/