I can’t believe I did this BUT, when I had my cover reveal for Fable of Happiness back in February, I COMPLETELY forgot to send the prettiness via my newsletter and website. I honestly have no idea how it happened. However, the good news is, I’ve included a sexy snippet as an apology so it’s actually rather a good thing 🙂
And without further ado…here is the gorgeous cover designed by Ari at Cover it Designs!
Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/3cuSAQq
It’s the start of something huge.
From New York Times Bestseller, Pepper Winters, comes a new Dark Romance full of decadent angst, monstrous heroes, and pages chock-full of lust.
A house hidden in the middle of nowhere.
A man who’s lived alone for a decade.
A woman who trespasses on his solitude.
A love full of hate as well as hunger.
The thing about my life is…I was never in control of it.
I just I thought I was.
I thought I had everything figured out—a good career, fun hobbies, a bright future, but everything changed when I found an ivy-cloaked house, tucked in a forgotten valley, hiding a man who corrupted my world forever.
I thought I was successful, until he showed me fortune and happiness could be snatched away in an instant.
I believed I was blessed, but really, I was cursed.
Cursed to become a plaything for a monster.
Cursed to become a prisoner just because I trespassed.
Now, I know nothing.
I am nothing.
I’m just his.
- I don’t have a release date as yet BUT it’s not far away.
- I’ll announce price and number of books closer to the release
- I have something SUPER DUPER special planned for this book and I can’t give too much away. Hence, why I’m basically not saying a single word. So forgive me for the covertness but I promise it will be worth it.
JUICY SNIPPET TIME
Please note this is copyrighted, subject to change, unedited and all that fancy stuff. Enjoy and don’t forget to add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/3cuSAQq
FABLE OF HAPPINESS by PEPPER WINTERS
I ALMOST CHOKED.
I have something else to offer.
Six simple words yet the worst sentence of my life.
My captor stiffened before me. Ever so slowly, he pushed away the remnants of his strange breakfast.
I’d never been a stickler for meal plans and rarely stuck to menu suggestions, but his odd combination of celery, peas, and strawberries made me wonder if he truly was uneducated, or at the very least, uncaring about routines and practices.
Cocking his head, he eyed me in his severe, strict way. “Go on…” He waved a hand. “What could you possibly have to offer me?”
I licked my lips as a wash of shivers darted down my back.
If I did this, I already knew I’d lose parts of myself I’d never really known. If I offered up my body in a trade to keep my soul, I could quite possibly end up losing both.
He could fuck me and kill me anyway.
He could keep me alive and never return my freedom.
What was worse?
Certain death or unknown sexual servitude?
Inhaling hard, I rubbed at my chest where my heart hurled itself against my ribs. The palpitations were full of fear, adrenaline, and a fair amount of shock.
Alone in the dark, I’d tossed and turned all night.
I’d asked myself how far I would go to stay alive. What would I do at his bequest if he agreed to let me go?
My answers had varied.
They’d switched from stark, rage-filled refusal to stupidly giving him anything: accepting death and dying innocent and soon, or crawling on my knees in enslavement and doing whatever he asked in order to survive.
By the time the sun had risen, I’d been no wiser on what my choice would be.
Turned out, I’d just made it.
Survival instinct was too strong to ignore and everything else paled compared to death. I wanted to live. I’d barely begun. I would make any trade that would ensure I saw another day.
That includes letting a bastard like him touch me.
I looked at him.
I drank in the long shaggy hair, the silvery scars, the angry burning eyes. I studied the man who would most likely possess me in ways no other man had done before. He would know me better than any other.
And he would do it without my consent.
Sure, I was about to give him the right to touch me if he refrained from killing me. But it didn’t mean I would be a willing participant. I would lock away my mind and fortify my heart. I would give him the shell of who I was to retain the most important part of me.
Would this make me a whore? Bartering my body for my life? Would I feel shame as he took me or vindication that I was brave enough to endure whatever it took to live?
My eyes skittered over to the PLB and its saluting antenna. It’d been hours since I’d activated it. If help truly was on the way, didn’t I owe it to them and myself to extend my lifespan? To give them a chance at finding me alive instead of some corpse hidden in this secret valley?
You can do this.
It’s just sex.
Just physical, nothing more.
Just an act that doesn’t mean a thing.
Raising my stare, I embraced every icy crystal in my blood from sleeping in this tomb and said as clearly, clinically, and coldly as possible. “My offer…is me.”
His eyebrows tugged low, shadowing his dark eyes. A flare of lust gleamed over his pupils. His nostrils flared as if scenting my disgust at such an offering, and his hands clenched into white-knuckled fists. Once again, he looked at me as if his gaze could strip me, finger me, tongue me, and claim me.
My nipples pebbled as he stared at my breasts and licked his bottom lip. My core tingled with disgusting acknowledgment as he looked between my legs and made a cauldron of hate and unwanted need answer back.
The power he held over his sexuality was the worst kind of weapon. The fact that he didn’t hide what he thought. That I knew exactly what he felt when he studied me. That he was moments away from snapping and mounting. That my offer had removed the shackles he’d put around his wrists, granting an almost sickening kind of disappointment.
He’d been looking forward to the fight. He’d wanted to be told no.
To humiliate me further? Because he had secrets of his own when it came to sex?
Either way, he nodded once, and a soft growl rumbled in his chest. “You.”
I curled my hands. “I’ll…do whatever you ask if you allow me to live and let me go.”
His eyes narrowed, pinning me to the floor. “Kneel.”
I opened my mouth to question, to argue.
He just wiped a hand over his lips and repeated in a guttural whisper, “Kneel.”
Had he accepted my offer, or was this a test?
Goosebumps multiplied over my body. I’d never been so powerless, so stripped of choice or refusal.
“Kneel!” he snarled, making me jump.
My knee nudged the PLB, tipping it over. The clunk was a reminder of why I’d offered, why I had to do this. With shaking hands, I righted the locator beacon and made sure the antenna faced toward the sky.
And then, I pushed aside my untouched, possibly poisoned breakfast and kneeled.
His harsh inhale made my stomach clench in ways I didn’t want to analyze. The heady huff of a male who didn’t hold back how desperate he was. How much his body burned. How much his lust broke him.
If I wasn’t being forced, I would’ve found his desire the headiest aphrodisiac. My skin would’ve scorched beneath his intensity. My core would’ve melted. My legs would’ve trembled to open.
In all my searchings for a suitable partner, I’d never come across a man who affected me on such a visceral level. A level devoid of humanity and conversation. We’d spoken a handful of words to each other, yet the heaviness of his need blanketed me.
It made my skin sizzle and my breasts burn. It made me sway on my knees as I forced myself to make eye contact with him and wait.
For an eternity, he just stared at me.
The longer he stared, the darker his stare became. He began to tremble, his hands shaking, his body quaking, his lust shattering him from the inside out. A part of him looked ferocious, like any killer, rapist, or devil in history. But the other part of him looked bewildered, afraid, and recklessly inexperienced.
My heart pounded so hard, I heard it in my ears, I felt it in my veins. I swore he could hear its rapid rhythm, slamming drums against the basement walls.
Suddenly, he shot to his feet.
His bare feet planted onto the damp concrete, kicking away his mostly empty plate without thought. Taking two steps toward me, he stood over me. Towered above me as he reached down with his left hand and dug strong fingers through my leaf-tangled hair.
Cupping the back of my head, he stared into me as if he was seconds away from shattering. With our eyes knotted, he used his right hand to work the button and zipper of his slacks.
He fumbled and yanked, splaying the front of his trousers to reveal the bareness of his cock. No underwear. No modesty. The hard length of his arousal sprang upward as his unfastened slacks fell to his ankles.
His fingers dug deeper into my hair, asking for something.
I waited for him to jerk me forward. For him to fist himself and shove the thickness past my lips.
But he did neither of those things.
He trembled harder, his cock weeping pre-cum, his balls drawn up so tight they were almost invisible in the dark thicket of hair.
His lips drew back in a snarl, baring his teeth as a growl echoed in his belly.
I waited for instruction.
I needed to be told what to do.
Didn’t he get that? I wouldn’t willingly touch him. I couldn’t. He had to make me do this. He had to release me from the shame of using sex for longevity.
His right hand fisted by his side, swinging slightly in time to his raging heartbeat. His drummed as fast and as heavy as mine, a chaotic song that made the cell pulse around us. Made the air spark with danger and longing.
He breathed hard. He groaned low in his throat. His hips rocked in time to his quaking. And still, he didn’t touch himself or drag my mouth to his cock.
What is he waiting for?
Was this all a challenge to him? I’d given myself over to him, but he’d still found a way to win. To make me bow to his demands. To rip that fight from me even while I’d done my best to avoid it.
His right hand opened and closed by his thigh as his cock twitched with another bead of pre-cum. His jaw worked as he clenched his teeth, and his fingers closed around my hair, pulling painfully.
“Your choice.” He bit out each word. “Live or die.”