Tag Archives: short fiction

Thirteenth Entry: Naagin

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We have passed out of the realms of men, beyond the watchful aura of city and civilization, into the wild that breathes to its own rhythms, beating the night-songs out of the brightest hour of day.  This is the land ruled in the name of the Tiger by all that has slipped into the hidden spaces beneath his feet.

The daylight is not dappled with shadow. Tenebrous intentions have conquered the sun. 

From the green dark she arises, out of the morning steam, only to scald us with a stare that glimmers unkindly. Half woman, all serpent,  this is the dawn of her hundredth year, and her arising is the arising of ancient magics that move only in this arena.

The music is silence; the jungle; the pressure of heat and dampness curling against our ears. The drumbeats are her stomping feet as they divide from serpentine coils, still evoking the same writhing comparison.

One by one, the leaves move, the forest floor disturbed by the motions of, not one, but many serpents, their slithering in time with the dance of the woman who has shed her skin. Golden-eyed, her stare too glittering, her skin brown as the dry leaves beneath her shining feet but smooth as summer, she moves away from us. Among them. One of them, as her dancing fades into the distance.

We retreat from the eyes that turn to us as she passes, away from the tongues that taste our air and the widening hoods of her cobra companions.

~~~~

Naagin References
Naagin Wiki
More about Naagin

Have a suggestion for a creature that belongs in the Bestiary? Leave it in the comments!

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Eleventh Entry: Rakushinpu

 

joro

The sound of the water rushes overhead. Beside us, the great fall is a roar and in its shadow the gleam of spray and the shadow of leaves overtake the world, together with drowsy promises. 

The spirits of the mountain speak in murmuring voices, a whisper to calm the senses, a low, red sound. Of love, it speaks, with the sound of a lute  and the eager harmony of all night’s darkest passions.

Come to me.

The voice does not belong to the water.

Stay with me.

The words are a plea from which an answer will summon only regret.

Is it not quiet here? Are you not tired now? Stay a while and sleep with me…

The lady of the falls trades on her whispers, and when the sun dips past the high of noon toward the horizon, when the laziness of the afternoon is full upon us – then, at the edge of the water, climbing in silken coils, the threads come one at a time.

Each one attaches to a man. An ankle. A toe. A calf. But we are prepared, as not many before us have been. The threads are not broken, but hooked to trees, to stumps – one rooted life in exchange for each marked man. 

As the sun begins to go down, the threads are pulled, one by one, and one by one pieces of the forest crash over the cliff-side, down the mountain, into the rage of the river and the waterfall’s roar.

A woman cries with it, and the longing has not left her voice. 

Stay with me, won’t you?

There is no laughter, no speech, as we make our way down the night blackened sides of the autumn mountain. We return to our camp – to the nearest village. It is there that we count our number and find that twenty-four has been reduced to twenty-three. 

Stay with me…

~~~~

Read more in the erotic horror novella Rakushinpu, free on Amazon KDP!

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Rakushinpu/Jorogumo References
Jorōgumo Wiki
Jorōgumo Legends

Have a suggestion for a creature that belongs in the Bestiary? Leave it in the comments!

Guest Author Raven Dark: Crime and…Punishment

Welcome, glorious beings! I hope the day finds you well, because today…we have a special guest! Say hello to Raven Dark, provider of last week’s Friday Fun post, writer of erotic romance, and especially BDSM erotica!

Who is Raven Dark? As a young girl she  dreamed of being abducted by a savage alien warrior, whisked away by a brutal pirate, or rescued by a cape-bearing hero. When none of these men came to claim her, she brought them to life in her stories. Then twelve years ago she met the man of her dreams. He doesn’t wear a cape, fly a spaceship, or wield a sword, but sometimes she swears they’ve mind melded.

Currently, Raven lives with her dream man and their one cat that thinks she’s a dog in the Mundane world’s version of Ontario, Canada. When she isn’t working on her latest erotic romance novels and crafting interesting worlds in which to set them, she’s spending too much time with friends, feeding her Youtube addiction, or curled up on a couch watching favorite shows with her future husband…

But today, she’s here to share a bit about her upcoming full length debut novel, Unlawful Desire, and give us some insight into why she writes!

UD Banner Muscle for Blogs

From The Author’s Pen…

I’m often asked why I write erotic romance and BDSM, but especially BDSM. It’s difficult to define what draws me to this genre because every story I write is different, but I can tell you what drew me to write Unlawful Desire, the book that just went live today.

Over the few years I’ve been writing and reading BDSM, researching into the lifestyle, I’ve noticed an alarming misunderstanding surrounding the genre. Specifically the view a lot of people have, that BDSM’ers enjoy abusing or hurting others, or they like being abused.

This is simply not true. There are practitioners who are into pain or humiliation, but properly done scenes come with informed consent and a safeword, safety protocols that an abusive relationship doesn’t have. Abuse is about power, whereas BDSM, when done correctly, is about fulfilling a fantasy both parties are into. Plus, humiliation, pain, those aspects of BDSM are only a small portion of a much broader world. The misconception is so prevalent it boggles the mind. I’ve lost count of how many times people have asked me why I like writing about “freaks who like abusing others.” Or why a strong, independent woman would want to “let a man abuse her.”

Yes, really.

When Unlawful Desire’s plotline came to me, I saw the perfect opportunity to incorporate the misconceptions that surround the lifestyle through the hero and heroine’s experiences.

As a professional Domme and former sub in the small town of Clayton-Moss, Annabella (or Ella, as everyone but Rock calls her) deals with this exact misconception every day. Having found out about it when Ella suffered an accident from a scene gone bad, her family disapproves of her kinky lifestyle, and they make no bones about it from the very start.

Simply because of his involvement in BDSM, they see Rock, her ex and former Dom, as an abuser, and Ella as being too blind to see what he was doing to her. Because Ella is also the daughter of one of Clayton-Moss’s founding families and the future heir to the town’s major real estate business, she’s a predominant figure. She deals with the same problem a lot of people face, knowledge that most of the people around her won’t understand her lifestyle choice, so it’s vital she keeps it under wraps. Especially with someone trying to blackmail her out of her empire.

On the surface, Unlawful Desire is an erotic romance about a couple getting a second chance at love, while teaming up to overthrow a greedy land developer who’s trying to take over Ella’s father’s empire. But there is a deeper underlying theme which I think makes this story stand out.

A lot of people become scared the first time they fantasize about their partner tying them up, thinking they’re wrong in the head. Even with how much more awareness there is toward kink these days, people fear they’ll be labeled sick or demented.

I’m hoping readers, especially ones who question their kinky side, will take away from the book an understanding of themselves. Individuals who into BDSM are not weird or sick, they don’t need curing, and they aren’t monsters. They’re normal, everyday people who come from all walks of life. A healthy fantasy life is not only beneficial, but chances are, everyone has at least one, even if it’s on the mild end.

This theme is only touched on in the first book, but each novel within the Men of Clayton-Moss series (each of which are stand-alone and deal with a different couple) is intended to delve deeper into the problems that arise from ignorance and stereotyping, as well as what happens when people prey on our fear of the unknown.

Overall, I love writing erotic romances because they tap into something so many women want, and don’t see enough of in real life. Happy endings and falling in that forever kind of love. But when it comes to the BDSM, at least with Unlawful Desire and my Men of Clayton-Moss series, I wanted to offer up something more than the standard fair. I wanted to open people’s eyes and tell those who might need to hear it, they are normal. They are worthy of love, and there is someone out there for them who will understand.

Thank you Belinda for having me, and for giving me this chance to talk about my baby!

Unlawful Desire Cover Black 8 Final Black

From the back cover: Their deepest secret could be their destruction…or their salvation. 

Curvy ex-submissive Annabella Clayton has no problem taking charge in the boardroom, or the bedroom. But as the future head of a major real estate empire in the small town of Clayton-Moss, she has to keep her life as a Domme under wraps. When greedy land developer Jake Scalder threatens to ruin her father’s business any way he can, she knows her BDSM lifestyle would cause just the kind of scandal he needs. Her only chance to save all that she and her father have built is to team up with gorgeous, relentless lawyer Rock McCarthy. Trouble is, Rock’s also her former Dom, and the man she let walk out of her life six years ago. 

While scrambling to expose Scalder’s corruption, their passions reignite, burning hotter than ever. Rock reawakens the hunger for his dominance Annabella’s buried for so long. But while he drives her deeper into his addictive world of rough fantasy, their enemy draws closer to discovering their forbidden secret. Can they take Scalder down before his plans succeed? Or will he destroy Annabella’s reputation and tear her and Rock apart forever? 

Warning! This book contains a BBW heroine who likes filthy talk and being called names in bed, plus a broody lawyer who’s happy to oblige. There are a few mild, brief ravishment scenes that are clearly role-play, but if you have triggers, please do not buy this book!

Unlawful Desire Teaser 1 Darker Live Version

Excerpt:  “Funny, I heard mention of a Mistress E. from one or two of the men at the club, but I never dreamed it would be you. How long have you been switching?”

“I don’t, not really.” She looked away. “I don’t sub anymore.”

“Never?”

“Nope.” A leaden sensation settled in Rock’s stomach as she got up from the couch and walked across the room to the window. She worked her hands over her lower back. From pain, or just a nervous habit?

He stood and followed her. His hands itched to work free the tension in her shoulders “Why did you stop subbing?”

“That’s a long story. I don’t want to talk about it.” She bowed her head and he could hear the pain in her voice.

Who hurt you? Protectiveness for her rode him hard but he forced himself not to press. “All right…” He bit back the urge to call her “girl,” the way he had when she was his. He had no claim to her now. If what she said was true, he never would again.

She turned to him. “I’ve asked you twice, more than I ever ask a man anything Rock. Why are you here?”

A smirk pulled at his mouth, heat spreading through his cock. “Nice dominance, Annabella. Too bad I don’t submit.”

“Ever?”

“Nope.” He wasn’t turned on by having a woman take control of him, but the possibility of fighting her for dominance made him hard as steel.

“Too bad you aren’t mine anymore. If you were, I’d tan your hide exactly like I used to when you stepped out of line.”

Her teeth flashed in a stunning grin. Despite what she’d said about not subbing anymore, he couldn’t mistake the heat in her eyes at his words, or the way she lowered them a fraction from his before her chin jerked back up.

“You still haven’t answered me.”

“And now I’m not going to. This is too much fun, watching you deal with a man you can’t command.”

“Ugh.” She spun to the window and he thought he heard her wince, her back tensing. “You’re as much of a jackass as you were six years ago.”

This time he couldn’t resist setting his hands on her shoulders and massaging them gently. His chest hitched when he felt the thick layers of tension there and the quivering breath she let out.

He put his mouth close to her ear. “You all right?”

“Why did you come back?”

“Disappointed?”

“No, but…”

The tightness in his chest loosened. He turned her around and cupped her face. “I’ve missed you, Annabella.”

Something flickered in her eyes, but he couldn’t define it. She didn’t speak, but lay her hand on his cheek. Did that mean she missed him, too? God, he couldn’t let her leave now, never knowing where things could have gone.

“Have dinner with me tomorrow night.”

She drew a shaky breath. “I can’t.”

“Why the hell not?”

“You know it can’t go anywhere. You are a Dom all the way and I can’t give you what you want. Not anymore.”

Want more? You can grab your copy of Unlawful Desire here, and follow Raven Dark on Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, her newsletter, at her blog, or even join her street team!

 

Tenth Entry: Gǎ-oh

 

indianwoman5

From the edge of the sea, we come to a new land, the westernmost reach of our journey so far. The coast leads inward to a wide land peopled by many nations, the world growing green and gold around us. At the edge of a lake so wide it might be a sea, the feathered warriors tell their stories, and we listen with interest.

Here, among other tales, the people speak of the wind as a giant, four reins in his hands, holding the Beasts of the Wind back from destroying the world. He is Gǎ-oh, King of Winds, but we do not speak his name in his presence.

His home is in the far north, and we follow the legend, rumor that flows inland and upward, over the water to the lands of ice. When we come to his home there is the blast of the tempest to greet us, and dark haired in the distance we see him shining at the horizon’s edge.

From the north of the world he controls the four winds – Ya-o-gah, bear of the north, breathing cold fire. The fawn in the south, Ne-o-ga, who sits waiting, gentle as morning. The wild panther of the west wind, Da-jo-ji, who bears the whirlwind on his back and raises the waves…  O-yan-do-ne, the moose of the east wind, chills newborn clouds as they drift into heaven.

In silence, contemplating, we watch the reins snap, the wind’s release, howling out of the north and down to the nations of men.

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Gǎ-oh References
Gǎ-oh Wiki
Iroquois Legends

Have a suggestion for a creature that belongs in the Bestiary? Leave it in the comments!

Guest Post and Giveaway: The Last Stop On The Undone Blog Tour With Belinda Burke

And I present for you the last stop on the Undone Blog Tour, at Crystal’s Many Reviewers! Read and enjoy! (And keep an eye out, because today is Friday, and that means it’s time for more…fun!)

Final Stop on the Undone Blog Tour

“If I Said I Loved You…” Stop Three of The Undone Blog Tour At Lovebytes Reviews With Belinda Burke

Day three, and another pause on the endless road of words! Yesterday brought me to Lovebytes reviews for Stop Three on the Undone blog tour – and don’t forget, that giveaway bit means free books!

Guest Post and Giveaway: The Undone Blog Tour With Belinda Burke.

Guest Post and Giveaway: The Undone Blog Tour With Belinda Burke

I still have the power! The darting of yesterday’s day two brought me to The Novel Approach reviews for Stop Two on the Undone blog tour – click, friend, and enter!

Guest Post and Giveaway: The Undone Blog Tour With Belinda Burke.

Ninth Entry: The Gancanagh

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Out of the woods, he comes as if he knew that we were there.  Dark haired, dark eyed, the sound of his voice is a song that comes faint over the shallows. Only the music carries, not the words, but that is more than enough to begin tying down the enchantment. 

He is gancanagh, love-talker, and the sweet of his words can imperil as much as the sweet of his skin. He walks the edge of the water,  slow steps that signal his readiness to stop, to wait – for the slightest reason, or no reason. It is the beginning of his game.  Already the women among us are turning to him, lifting their eyes, their hands, fingers curled as if they could touch the softness of his hair from where they stand. 

The beasts and beings that do not belong to the human world are dangerous monsters, most of them, but this one is dangerous because he is not a monster. Because he is beautiful – because, as long as he stands smiling, it is easy to believe he could be tame. 

The air turns sweet, beguiling dust moving in motes golden as honey. The taste of it flows like wine on the currents of the breeze. He stares at us, and then at one among us, and the woman who has caught his eye is still as a statue despite the deck rocking beneath her, despite the whipped up surface of the sea. 

We turn away from the shore, before the sugar in the air overcomes her – before it addicts her, turns the core of her being to nothing more than a seeker after that dust. He watches, and the sound of his laughter follows us. 

He watches, and she watches back, as we sail away toward the dusk. 

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Gancanagh References
Gancanagh Wiki
Love Talk

Have a suggestion for a creature that belongs in the Bestiary? Leave it in the comments!

Eighth Entry: The Redcap

 

red cap for bestiary 8

The castle should be empty, but as we pass through open doors, the sound of iron-shod feet confronts us, pattering madly. We came wondering, but not, perhaps, believing – now, we know the story to be true. It is the Redcap, haunt and horror, too fast to escape and so we do not move. 

We stay together, watchful, wary, and when the sun sets, hear the screams and run together, but we know what the creature will do.  The sound of feet, the sound of mad, dark laughter – we watch, from a distance, wishing to inspire no more death, as he bends over a body.

An old, small man he seems, but armed with a long iron pike that he grips in talons fiercer than a predator bird’s. His feet beat against the ground while he stands, one then the other, heel then toe.  His cap is in his hand, and he drains blood with it, the red invisible in the dark. He hums, but the melody is nothing human.

Having been witness to the horror, we retreat, but slowly. If the blood begins to dry, he’ll seek another victim. If we run, we might go far, but never fast enough. 

Better not to be noticed. Better to hold our breaths.

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Cockatrice References

Redcap Wiki
Redcaps at Mysterious Britain

Image Credit: JB Monge

Have a suggestion for a creature that belongs in the Bestiary? Leave it in the comments!

Seventh Entry: The Cockatrice

 

cockatrice bestiary 7

In the wilderness, impossible things are sometimes born that make their way into the world of man – yet it is also the case that occasionally the opposite is true. We have met such a beast, and survived to speak of it – the wizard’s dragon, the sorcerer’s apprentice. 

If the morning is quiet in farm country, and there is no crowing of roosters to welcome the oncoming dawn, be wary of walking alone. Perhaps one is near you, slaying those whose signal is as a death cry – small creatures turned to stone will tell the tale. The rock in the shape of a rodent may once have been a living mouse. 

Bird-footed, bird-faced, born from an egg a toad has hatched, the cockatrice bears a deadly venom and even to be perceived by it is death. In its glare is a swinging scythe – like Medusa, broken beauty of the ancient world, all that look directly upon it turn to stone. 

We see it from above, safe in our watchful silence, perusing the reflection of his horror and mystery in still waters. The creature itself avoids its own gaze, drinks slowly with a tongue like a lizard’s. When the beast rattles his tails and disappears into the brush, we breathe easy again. 

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Cockatrice References

Cockatrice Wiki
Cocktrice at the Encylopedia Britannica

Image Credit: Jivu

Have a suggestion for a creature that belongs in the Bestiary? Leave it in the comments!