*Passionate Plume Award for Paranormal Romance
* Aspen Gold Reader’s Choice Award for Erotic Romance
Reviews for Masque:
“Decadent and indulgent, this ghost story is a sensual feast for fans of the gothic and the erotic alike.“ – Romantic Times
“Realistic and yet surreal. Could not put it down. A real page turner. Wonderful imagery! Do not miss this one!” – Amazon Review
“If I could give it more than 5 stars I would, because this book is truly exceptional! The writing is outstanding, with characters that stole my heart, and a riveting story. If you enjoy a book that’s a bit different from the norm, then this is an excellent choice. I have added a new author to my list of favorites!” – Goodreads Review
Masque was inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s short story “The Masque of the Red Death.”
Rena Mills plans to turn an abandoned abbey into a haunted bed-and-breakfast to prove she can be successful without her ex-fiancé. What she finds inside is Synn MacAllistair, the distinguished, self-proclaimed Ghost Keeper. Her dreams soon fill with sexual cravings for him. But are they dreams?
Synn, born in 1828, is determined to free the souls of the resident spirits, blaming himself for bringing the Red Death that killed them. When Rena steps into the old Pleasure Palace, he’s sure he can take her through the after-midnight Pleasure Rooms and stoke her passion to complete the Masque so the souls can cross over. Her innocent fire makes him crave more, but it’s far too late for him.
As Rena begins her erotic journey, her heart becomes more involved with every sensual caress until she discovers by completing the Masque she would lose her ghosts. Synn’s betrayal wars with her compassion for her ghostly friends. Torn, she must make a choice between her financial security and freeing seventy-three trapped souls. Either way, she could lose her Synn.
Excerpt from Masque:
Cape Breton, Nova Scotia
People. Living, breathing people.
Synn MacAllistair grasped the embrasure of the parapet, his heart thudding as he stared at the vehicle crossing the stone bridge over the moat. It came to a stop at Ashton Abbey’s massive gate.
He waited. The great iron grille, chained and padlocked against intruders, would be considered a significant deterrent to entering. Open it. Damn it, open it!
The vehicle remained stationary. No one exited the large red monstrosity.
Impatiently, he pushed away his hair as the breeze whipped it across his view. What were they waiting for? If they needed an axe to break the chain, he’d gladly provide them with one.
Another smaller vehicle rolling parallel to the west wall caught his attention. It crossed the bridge and parked behind the larger one. More people?
A man stepped from the small conveyance and shuffled to the gate. Synn leaned farther over the battlement, anxious to see if their time had come. The joyful sound of clanking chains floated up to him on the breeze.
Finally! About bloody time. He swallowed hard to keep the yell of triumph from escaping his throat. No need to scare their new guests.
The man below hurried back to his transport and, without hesitation, backed across the bridge and left faster than he’d arrived.
Synn peered down at the red vehicle, still as a brick, its black windows making it impossible to see inside. A door opened and a woman burst onto the cobblestone entrance. She bent over and spoke to someone else still inside. Her blonde hair hid her face, but her ass, covered in men’s trousers, was small, her legs lanky. A woman? A woman dared enter a haunted abbey? He tried to grasp the concept.
His plan was to convince a man to enjoy the pleasures of the flesh, but there had to be a man to convince…unless a couple entered the Abbey. Couples enjoyed the Pleasure Rooms as well. If he could persuade a couple to participate in the Masque then his companions could still be freed.
Peering hard, he watched and waited. After what seemed another decade, a door on the other side of the red contraption opened. He held his breath, willing the occupant to have broad shoulders, a beard, anything to indicate a man.
A long, slender leg stretched out, a black high-heel shoe of delicate design at its end, and a feminine hand grasped the side, but remained stationary.
He growled with frustration. “Bloody hell. What am I supposed to do with two women?” He hadn’t expected women. The Abbey overflowed with spirits. Only men should dare enter. How were blasted women going to help him? He paced away from the wall, but quickly returned. Could there be more people inside the vehicle?
He waited, his patience long gone, not that he ever had much, but damn, it’d been a hundred and fifty years. That would strain the patience of an archangel, something he definitely was not.
He glared as the leg moved and within a moment’s breath, the woman unfolded herself from the conveyance.
Synn stared, frozen in time for once, drinking in a beauty far surpassing any painted Aphrodite he’d ever gazed upon. Her long, wavy brown hair captured the sun, shining like fine brandy. Her figure, as lush as any Greek goddess, swayed sensuously in her short dress. Her arms were bare and the smallest of noses held her dark glasses in place. He stepped back, away from the crenellation, his heart racing, his mind whirling with ideas.
He paced the length of the wall. A vision was about to enter his stone prison. A woman fit to be worshiped with every salacious touch he’d ever learned. His cock hardened beneath his pantaloons. Amazed, he stopped and looked down at it. After so many years of having no needs—for food, for sleep, for relieving himself—the last he’d expected to feel was the need for a woman. He shook his head. It defied logic. But if his body could respond, then he could participate, guide a woman through the Masque.
The creaking hinges of the gate brought him back to the wall to see the backs of the two women entering the Abbey courtyard. Two women. Vivid memories of his happier days with the prince caught him by surprise and gave him hope. As he strode across the wall-walk and down the stone staircase, his mind raced with possibilities. One after another they were discarded as he floated to the landing on the second floor. But a new plan began to form as the great pine doors opened.
Erotic romance inspired by the classics