Hi peeps, we have Alexis Duran popping in with her new release Gryffon Hall, we have a great exclusive excerpt and a brilliant giveaway, so check out the post and click that giveaway link ~Pixie~
Born the useless fourth son of the Lord of Glimmerveen, Wryler dreams of getting married and escaping the rustic confines of his father’s castle. A wealthy merchant’s son seems to hold the key to Wryler’s safe if somewhat dreary future. However, the arrival of a mysterious stranger on the eve of Wryler’s betrothal sends his plans into disarray and Wryler finds himself traded off in marriage to one of the most notorious rogues in the land.
Is Lord Aeric Rouchet the scoundrel he appears to be, or is he something much worse? Separated from his family and thrust into a strange and dangerous new life at the foreboding Gryffon Hall, Wryler must unravel the secret of his husband’s shadowed life and defeat the curse which threatens not only his growing affection for the barbarian in his bed, but the lives of everyone the Lord of Gryffon Hall is sworn to protect.
After the feast
Morning arrived on the plodding feet of ill-tempered giants. Glimmerveen Castle ground into a tumultuous, clanging upheaval as the harsh light of day crept over the castle’s outer walls and poured into Wryler’s window with relentless persistence.
He sat in bed with his hands wrapped around a mug of tea, recounting the evils of alcohol and swearing off the foul brew for the rest of his days. Amster snored loudly, stretched out on the settee beneath the window. Wryler had to summon a kitchen maid to bring him his breakfast—hot, spiced tea, dry bread, and a few sad-looking pieces of fruit. He nibbled on the bread and listened to fifty-odd guests loading their carriages, shouting at the servants, and generally making a very pointless racket. He wondered if Lord Rouchet was among those leaving and, with a creeping dread, recalled their unfortunate encounter.
Wryler’s body stirred, and he grimly ordered it to calm down. Thank goodness he hadn’t succumbed to Rouchet’s impetuous advances. It was a small miracle the brute hadn’t taken advantage of Wryler’s obvious drunkenness. He dimly recalled Rouchet threatening to hoist Wryler over his shoulder and carry him off to ravish him, at which point Wryler had said something devastating enough to send the barbarian running off into the night.
To his extreme irritation this muddled memory did nothing to soothe his body. His troublesome cock just kept growing harder and harder no matter how much Wryler conjured terrifying images of being abducted by the lord, manhandled, forced to do… Well, his imagination wasn’t that lurid… Oh dear, yes it was.
He nearly dumped the tea in his lap when someone thumped loudly on his door, and for a second he thought it might be Rouchet come to make good on his threats.
Then the door burst open and his father marched in, followed closely by his first minister, Fenwale Cook. They were both smiling, which made Wryler want to leap from the bed and throw himself out the window. No good ever came from his father smiling.
“Still lounging in bed, I see,” Lord Glimmerveen said in a booming voice. “You did well at the feast last night, so I won’t hold it against you. Not on this fine morning. Isn’t it a fine morning, Wryler?” Lord Glimmerveen stood with his hands on his hips, apparently unperturbed by the wide-sodden funk of Wryler’s room.
“I wouldn’t know, Father, for as you noted, I am still in bed.” He glared at the intruders, but they didn’t seem to notice. Instead they drew closer and hovered over him as if he were sitting on a couch in his father’s study, dressed and presentable instead of miserable in his nightshirt.
“I have good news,” his father said. “Your destiny is sealed, my boy. No longer will you be the useless fourth son of a second wife but a well-situated husband in a grand house of your own.”
Wryler set down his mug on the nightstand with a trembling hand. So the deal was done.
“You’ve finally reached an agreement with Sir Arsburry?” he asked.
“Arsburry? That lowborn merchant? No, no. Why would I trade you away to a commoner when I could have a lord as a son-in-law?”
Wryler swallowed with difficulty. His head pounded. “Which lord?” he asked meekly.
Psychic, photographer, poet, fairy godmother, writer, woman on a train.
I am a writer of fantasy, science fiction, romance and erotic m/m everything. Most likely my stories will have a paranormal element, but I’m dreaming up some “real world” recovery romances as well. I’m thrilled to be working with Loose Id on both my Masters and Mages series (Touch of Salar is Book 1) and my high fantasy novella, To Catch a Threeve.
Like my characters, I am a figment of someone else’s imagination.
I was conceived on the Orient Express, somewhere between Venice and Istanbul. That trip was one of many revival attempts at the old, romantic line and the year was 1965. Three years before the Russian crackdown, my father, a Czech diplomat, was traveling with a cultural delegation promoting socialist writers.
My mother was an American housewife on the run.
What was she running from? Boredom. Also from turning 30. From being old and boring, she ran. She’d won a national cooking contest for her Mexicali Macaroni and Cheese. She took her winnings and bought a one-way ticket to Paris. As often happens when you seize your dream by its uni-horn and jump the track, fate intervened to keep my mother alive and moving for over a year in a Europe she knew nothing about. She spoke very little French and no Czech. My father spoke a smattering of English, only enough to flirt with the vivacious Californian in the bar car. My mother wasn’t sure about most of what he said, but she’s pretty sure he said his name was Alex Duran. She never saw him again after that fateful night, but they did exchange postcards for many years in code, via a post office box Prague. He signed his cards A.D.
Fate again played a hand because it was also on a train, this time between Prague and Munich, that I met my first star-crossed lovers whose tale demanded to be immortalized.
Though it might seem more natural for a writer to insert herself in the middle of her fantasies, I have been content to remain an observer, friend and biographer of my soul-bound friends. I spent three months in Sophia, Bulgaria with an old witch woman learning how to channel the many spirits and forms which they’ve taken over the centuries and dimensions, in order to record their adventures. I consider it an honor to be the woman on the train, and take my own pleasures where I find them. They often begin in the bar car of international high speed trains.