Shadows of the Night

(1 customer review)

The joy of new beginnings is cut short when Betty and Reed return home from their honeymoon to a mysterious package and a PI hot on their heels. When Betty, with the help of the Rattlers Motorcycle Club, discovers who sent the PI, her world is rocked.

The chaos threatens their stability and new family. Betty will do anything to protect her new life and love, including risk reconnecting with old ghosts at the expense of her sanity. And Reed will do anything to protect Betty.

This is book two in the Rattler Romance series but can be enjoyed independently.

 

Publisher’s Note: This contemporary romance contains elements of mystery, suspense, sensual scenes and power exchange. If any of these offend you, please do not purchase.

$3.99

Sample Chapter

Riding

 

Thunder vibrated under my seat as I squeezed Reed around his midsection. Even though we were no strangers to intimacy, I missed his bare skin against mine when we were riding.

We had these barriers between us because we wanted to be extra safe. The riskier adventures we’d save for the bedroom.

Tucking my head between his shoulder blades, I waited until the next stop sign to kiss his shoulder. He reached back to rub my thigh through the rips in my jeans. Everything felt tingly.

“We’ll be there soon. Be a good girl for me.”

I edged my leg forward, taking his fingers, including the sweet dedication tattoo on his ring finger, deeper into my jeans.

He chuckled, drawing circles on my skin within the tight, warm sheathe. “Careful. You’re on the verge of being naughty.”

As I edged under his tank top, he removed his hand from my thigh to resume driving, the momentum making my nails dig into his abs. I was already anticipating an amazing honeymoon because I’d be alone with Reed. He didn’t want anything crazy. Save your money, he told me. As long as we were alone and had relative relaxation and privacy, our honeymoon would be everything we needed.

No Rattlers. No watchful small town. Just Reed and me, comfy and sweet.

We’d worry about other things when we got back. I wouldn’t want to ruin the mood with anything crazy that didn’t involve an orgasm afterwards.

The fresh air from the lake mingled with the scent of our sweat from the ride. The urge for us to peel off our leather jackets and jump into the water took root inside of me.

“Whelp. Here it is.” Even when the motor stopped purring, I couldn’t seem to shake the buzz of excitement under my thighs. Reed let me scoot off first so I could remove my helmet and get a good look at the cute cabin before he attempted to swing his long legs over the bike.

I leaned over to peck his cheek. “It looks amazing.”

“The guys said they put our luggage in the bedroom.” He shook out his hair and mopped his face with his red riding bandana. The black version he’d acquired in the spirit of our wedding was safely stowed in my bag for playtime later, along with a few other things I’d packed for our honeymoon.

“They wouldn’t go through anything, right?”

“They know better than that.” He pulled me into a firm kiss that had me chasing his lips when it ended. That mischievous glint in his eyes had me aching to climb on top of him.

“Reed?” He always liked it when I told him how badly I needed him. Reed never demanded my attention, like my stepbrother, Dale did, he just appreciated and reciprocated it. Why did I have to think about that dark time at all? I wanted to enjoy the best time of my life with my soul mate. Swallowing, I looked away, only for Reed to lift my chin and tap my lower lip with his thumb.

It was okay to want Reed. It was good. He wanted me, too. He loved me.

“Hold onto that thought.” Plucking one of the rocks from the garden, Reed slid the false bottom off to retrieve a key. The unique detail added a little bit of ceremony to the unveiling. He twisted the locks and opened the door, then pocketed the key and gestured for me to join him.

As soon as I was within reach, Reed literally swept me off my feet and into a bridal carry. “Reed!” I squeaked, delighted. “This is so romantic. But you know the threshold thing was only for our house for the first time we went back in?”

“We’re going to cross more than one threshold in life and as long as we both shall live, in sickness and in health, I’m going to be there with you.” The sentiment made my eyes water, wishing I could crush him to my chest and grind our very essence together. He pressed a kiss to my jaw and pivoted to squeeze us through the doorway.

The cabin was sweet, homey and clean without smelling sterile. After meandering past the open concept kitchen and living room, he carried me into the bedroom where rose petals peppered the cheery, yellow bedspread.

“You told them it was our honeymoon?” I teased, letting the bags slip to the floor so I could wrap my arms around him properly.

“It’s not every day I get to book a place for the express purpose of holing up with my wife.”

“Maybe we should make it a regular thing.”

He gently laid me down, crawling on top of me without pinning my shoulders so I was comfortable and relaxed. With a tender caress, he looked into my eyes and smiled. “You good, baby?”

“Yeah. So good.” I kissed his thumb, moving so my cheek fully rested in his hand. This was everything I needed. Almost everything, I amended, trailing my hand from his cheek to his belt buckle.

He exhaled a laugh, kissing my cheek. “We just got in. You wanna start the fun already?”

“Why wait?”

“Because,” he said, softly trailing kisses down my chest. “I have something in the bag for you.”

Impatient, I slicked his hair back, grateful to submerge myself in its soft, slightly greasy texture after being unable to for the entire ride. Sometimes I just wanted to thread it together and cover myself in him. “All I need is you.”

“You’ll like this. I promise.” With one last kiss to my stomach, Reed crawled off the bed and started to rifle through his bag. I was ready to find out what his present was.

In my eagerness, I peeled off my jacket and shimmied out of my jeans. Reed glanced over with a grin. “Eager, are we?”

“Just giving you easier access,” I teased, not bothering to remove my top before rolling over onto my hands and knees, posterior raised.

“Good girl.” He smacked the curve of my ass, the sweet sting sending a thrill down to my extremities. As I savored the lingering sensual tingle, he pulled at my underwear with one finger, exposing my sex to the cool air conditioning. “Take these off for me.”

I slid the lacy garment down my hips and rebalanced to get it past my knees, then kicked it off with my heel. Whatever he was doing, I could still feel his eyes warming me up.

“Reedsy…”

“Patience, baby.”

The surprise would be worth it. I stretched my neck and wiggled my hips in anticipation. The rose petals clung to my palms and legs in a silky caress, the floral scent so sweet and romantic.

“This is really—” A vibrating hum cut off my thoughts. Was it a toy for him or for me? For both of us, probably.

“What?” He stroked the outside of my thighs, a click silencing the vibrations. I peeked over my shoulder to cherish the small smile on his lips, his torso bare from his jacket and t-shirt, jeans popped open but still zipped so I could only see the bulge of his erection. “Is it good?”

I knew I was supposed to answer. Still, I craved another slap, and arched up until he gave me two, my clit throbbing for contact.

“Yes.”

“You want me to film this one?” Already going fuzzy from adrenaline, I nodded.

He grabbed the phone mount, attaching it to the headboard and spinning the viewfinder so I could see him when he moved behind me, readjusting my hips. My shirt hung low enough to show my bra and when I arched my back just right it appeared like he was already inside of me.

“You like the way we look, baby?” I nodded. With a playful spanking, he gripped me until I was giggling, my ass raised in the air. “Show me those pretty, rosy cheeks.”

“Reed,” I laughed. “What’s the vibrating thing?”

“Since we got our fingers tattooed, I figured we could try a silicone ring.” His half-embarrassed tone was incredibly endearing.

I sent an encouraging smile over my shoulder. “That sounds exciting.”

“You ever played with one of these?”

“No. You?”

“No, but I’ve been doing some reading.” He massaged my ass with both hands. “What’s our signal?”

“One, two, and three.” I edged back into him, eager to be full, to make new memories. We had a full arsenal of ways to communicate when things got hot and heavy just in case we started to lose our connection in other areas.

I’d never lose Reed. Not if I could help it.

“I love you,” I breathed, grinding back against the seam of his jeans.

“I love you, too.” He caressed my hips, stamping kisses onto the small of my back.

He really did love me.

The chant rolled in my head as he tested my entrance, already wet from anticipation. My teeth dug into my lip as he curled his fingers deeper in my sex, seeking out my G-spot. Not wasting any time.

“You feel so good,” I sighed, pushing back into him, moaning as he reached to rub my clit. I wanted to touch him, to please him, to make the blood in his veins sing like mine did. In this position, all I could do was set the pace.

I wanted more.

Rocking my hips, I looked over my shoulder at him, locking eyes with a heated gasp. His blue eyes were so dark when we made love—when he was just as buried in our chemistry as I was.

My leg extended back so my toes could curl into his thigh. I wanted all of him. Taking the hint, Reed pushed his jeans further down and wiped my slick on his dick. Just the idea of him slathered in me – in us – made me clench, missing his touch.

“Can you…”

“You want the toy turned back on?”

I grinned. “Well, you already turned me on.”

“Have I?” The thrust of his hips against my ass sent me wobbling. I giggled, breathless and flushed before I looked up at the viewfinder to meet his gaze again. His hand disappeared behind us and vibrations buzzed into the room again. “You’re in for a long ride, Betts.”

As he slid into me, the hard heat of his cock combined with the pleasant buzz of the ring had my eyes rolling back in my head.

“Forever.”

“Forever,” he grunted amidst my intimate inner grip.

The pounding tempo might as well have been my heartbeat. Everything felt so steady, even the caressing, occasionally bruising grip on my hips. His jeans provided rough texture against the back of my thighs whereas everything else was so silky and smooth.

“Reed,” I panted, thrusting right along with him, vibrations building and massaging my orgasms. By the second one, my knees ached and a nearly numbing sense of euphoria washed over me. “Can we – can I sit on your lap?”

He rotated one big circle inside of me before pulling out and tapping my ass. From the way he stumbled back, this session was probably taking a lot out of him.

“I’ll take care of you.” It didn’t matter if he said it or I did because the mantra was pulsing in the air. The words sent a purr through my soul, the same kind of primal satisfaction I got from tending to his broken lip when we first met.

“My husband,” I cooed, brushing his wild, sweaty hair back. He probably wished he could wear his bandana, but my fingers in his hair seemed to relax him enough to come forward so I could help him out of his jeans. “You’re so good to me.”

“You’re everything,” he murmured, probably not loud enough for the cameras.

“We belong together.” The promise made him come closer to me so our tattoos touched our partner’s skin. I weighed his dick in one hand, heavy and thick. The cock ring circled around his balls as well as his shaft. I didn’t see any signs of strain, but I wanted to make sure he was still comfortable. “What’s your number?”

“One.”

Swirling my tongue around his tip, I took him into my mouth at the awkward angle just because I wanted to feel him and make him happy. He groaned, one hand catching onto my shoulder for balance, the other fisting my hair, almost pulling it out of the loose bun. I loved when we went primal just as much as when we looked into each other’s eyes and rode each other to the end.

His eyelids fluttered, knees practically buckling as I continued to suck.

“Okay, baby. Sit down for me.” He practically collapsed onto the edge of the bed.

I climbed into his lap, shivering as he pressed kisses into my chest. It felt so good to be held again. As I took him inside of me, I felt full to bursting, the vibrations of the ring right against my clit.

It was overwhelming.

“Reed, please.” I peppered kisses along his shoulders, running my hands all over him. The soft texture of his hair contrasted so deliciously to the muscles of his back. I needed him so badly.

I dragged my nails across his skin, tugging his hair just the littlest bit until he fisted my bun hard enough it loosened to a ponytail. The prickle at my scalp distracted me from the pressure of bouncing on my knees.

“I’m yours.”

“Mine.” He sucked a hot bruise into my neck. The stimulation was enough to send me soaring into another orgasm, my nails sinking into his flesh as white lightning flashed behind my eyelids. The tight, pulsing thrust between my legs indicated it was his time to fly.

Really, it was our time.

We rutted against one another until the sensitivity was too much. Parting just enough to take the silicone cock ring off, Reed and I lay side by side on the bed to recover.

“We got all sweaty.” Having such a healthy sex life was refreshing. Ever since I’d connected with Reed on an emotional and spiritual level, I hadn’t felt anxious nearly as often as I used to.

He nuzzled into my shoulder as my fingers dipped into the line in the center of his abs. “Want to shower?”

“In a few minutes.”

We settled in amidst the sticky petals and soft linens, stroking one another until we needed to stretch.

As I lifted the t-shirt over my head and Reed turned off the camera, I peeked out into the main living area to the windows beyond. “Instead of a shower, do you wanna go for a swim?”

“Really?” He smiled, raising his eyebrows and glancing at my bare butt. “Do you want to go skinny dipping?” asked, my kinky sweetheart.

Unhooking my bra, I nudged my bag against the wall with my foot. “I really wanted to wear a bathing suit for you.”

Reed’s eyes gleamed. “I’ve never seen you in a bikini, a one-piece, or even a thong,” he teased, coming up behind me to tongue the fresh hickey on my neck.

“You know I don’t wear those.”

“Where are you going?” he asked, bewildered, as I held the suit to my bare chest and padded to the bathroom.

“I just want to look…” The way he gazed at me, so open and sincere, made me feel like no matter how disheveled I was or what state of dress I was in, he’d always say I was beautiful. “I want to reveal it to you.”

With a big sigh, he reached for his bag. “You’re cute, but you’re weird, too.”

“You knew that when you married me.” We’d certainly had an unusual courtship. We smiled at each other before I retreated, leaving the door open just a crack so we could spy if the desire struck either of us.

After threading my long hair into a bun instead of its ravished ponytail, I managed to wash up enough to get my bikini on without feeling like a sex addict.

“You ready?” His low voice rumbled and I felt it in my gut.

Touches of color remained on my lips, cheeks, and on my neck from our tryst, but in the harsh overhead light I looked so pale that I wondered if I should do anything else.

A Moore and Miller was always supposed to look their best. I was a Parker, now, and the sense of freedom and relief that came from knowing I was loved no matter what I looked like was almost overpowering.

Taking a deep breath, I met my gaze in the mirror. The bags under my eyes were just a result of the lighting. My bright green eyes were framed with whatever smudged brown eyeliner survived our ride. A swipe of waterproof mascara might be nice. I twisted open the cap and held the wand up to my lashes.

A shadow lurked in the crack of the doorway, just like when I used to have to share an en suite. It wasn’t taking shape as my husband.

Despite the ice-cold anxiety seizing my bones, I refused to believe it could be my stepbrother. I’d never see him again. He didn’t know where I was or how to find me.

“Reed?” I panicked, dropping the wand and backing up against the counter.

“What?” Concern colored his expression as he moved into the light, then reached up to cup my cheek. “You okay?”

Relief flooded my pounding heart. “Yeah,” I breathed, touching my chest as if willing my heart to slow down and grasping his fingers to make sure it was all real.

“This is a great look.” His eyes crinkled with his smile as he pressed delicate kisses across my cheeks. “It’s you.”

“Oh, the suit. I was going to…”

“Step out another five feet?”

“This lighting’s not the most flattering,” I blubbered, knowing it didn’t matter. As we moved into a hug, I glanced at the mascara skid marks on the countertop and tried to smear them away with my fingertips.

“If you’re so worried, let’s go out into the sun.”

“Can I put on your sunblock?”

His smile pressed sweetly into my neck. “Of course.”

Even though we hadn’t hit the water yet, I felt like we were floating together.

Safe. Home. Loved.

 

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1 review for Shadows of the Night

  1. Redrabbitt

    The Rattler Romance series would be best read in the written order. The second book picks up at the end of book one where Reed and Betty have just married, and it is the start of their honeymoon. The story will have them so in love with each other, and yes, the first several chapters include plenty of explicit and erotic sex scenes on their honeymoon. The chemistry between this couple sizzles and the love and passion between them is undeniable. In many ways, for each of them, the love they have for each other is unlike anything they ever experienced growing up—it’s like they ‘get’ each other.

    “What kind of person makes your inspiration and the love for your own town fade? Do you feel like you have to take care of me, and that has to be your new hobby?”—Betty

    “Loving you is the best thing that ever happened to me. You’re the only reason I ever thought I could have a family.”

    The return home from the honeymoon comes with gifts, and one has Betty on edge, a hydrangea plant with no card. It will have her hacking into family social media accounts to see if she can discover anything, and apparently her family knows she married. Now the word is that they have a private investigator looking for Betty. Reed will put the Rattlers on alert, she is part of the family, and they take care of family. When the PI shows, Betty holds her own, and even wins her over.

    “Whatever you do, leave my husband out of it and my friends, too. If you have to take anyone down, let it be me. It won’t be the first time someone tried to pin me to a butterfly board and told me to sit pretty.”

    Betty decides it is time to face her family and on her terms. But she won’t be alone, she has shared the horrors she experienced growing up, how she was deemed irrational and her stepbrother protected when he was the monster. Will Betty agree to a once a year reunion visit with her mother and sister? Whatever is decided, Reed will be there to protect her.

    “I’m not sure we can change things. My perspective isn’t the problem. Our relationship was severed the day you chose your vision over our wellness.”

    “You are my family. My soul mate. Mostly, you’re my everything. Not everything was bad in the past, and not everything with them in the future has to be. If it’s just my Mom and Amy.

    The story will have the good, the bad, and the ugly of people and life. While I admire Betty’s tenacity and determination to put the painful memories behind her and move forward, this time, she has Reed and the Rattlers backing her. You can’t help but find yourself cheering for this couple and wanting them to have the best. The love and passion between them oozes off the pages. The story has only mild spankings and explicit and often sex scenes. But best of all, it does have the coveted happily ever after ending. I’m glad they didn’t let the past destroy their future, and I see them having a positive impact on his family too. Her family is a piece of work, and I understand not wanting to have a relationship with them—they don’t deserve it.

    “I’m yours. Forever and always, I do.”

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