Deceived by Desire


Shapeshifter Regency Erotic Romance
January 2009
69,000+ word novel
Deceived by Desire – Roaring Rogues, the second tale
Out now from Ellora’s CaveA whore without any whoring credentials? Laney’s convinced she can pretend well enough, after all, she’s pretended to be a mistress for years. Blessed with perplexing visions of the future, she keeps seeing herself with a roaring rogue!

Cursed into the form of a lion without nightly sex, Nash Hammond wants only two things—his wenches wild and willing, and his liquor strong and smooth. What he doesn’t need is a virgin!

Only problem is, Nash develops an affinity for the deceitful Laney—the “whore” who gives a man reason to hope.

FYI: Includes anal sex, multi-gender spanking and lots of growling.

 

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reviews

4½ Stars from Romantic Times – This deliciously wicked Regency romp is an irresistible tale that weaves shapeshifting lions with clairvoyance and steamy sex…an ingeniously constructed plot…Laced with wit, scandal and true love, it’s a wonderfully entertaining escape.

4.5 Nymphs – I love Regency Romance, and Ms. Lyons knows how to incorporate the paranormal and erotica flawlesslyLiterary Nymphs Reviews

4.5 Stars – I really enjoyed the humorDeceived by Desire is a well-written story with an unusual, intriguing plot.Ms. Lyons allows you to really see into the minds of all three of these main characters…a very enjoyable story with some interesting novel twists. – Just Erotic Romance Reviews

5 Stars – I fell in love with Laney and Nash. I read the book in one day, it was Hot!! I will be reading all of Larissa’s books-she is one of my favorite authors. her books are for the KEEPER shelf. Reader comment, Jasmine Jade site

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excerpt

“You’re late.” Nash tried not to notice the relief that swept over him when he opened the door to his second-floor room at The White Knight Inn & Tavern and she swept inside. “And you’re wearing that.…damn…hat.”

“No I’m not.” She twitched her skirts and walked past him.

Nash avoided slamming the door only by sheer will, but it gave him great pleasure to turn the lock and hear the echoing clink. He swung to face her. “Then, pray tell, what exactly is that nesting on your head?”

God. He was glad to see her—even though he still couldn’t, due to the latest monstrosity she wore. Forest green, with midnight netting and hordes of lacy gauze jumbled on top, a wide brim made a nest for the tiny bird perched over her brainbox.

As the evening had progressed without hint of her arrival, he’d begun thinking he’d overplayed his hand that afternoon and wasn’t going to have the pleasure of her company—he meant body—tonight. Fortunately, he’d been wrong. Unfortunately, her taste in hat wear hadn’t improved a lick. “There’s a beak hanging over your forehead, bobbing at me.”

“This style is all the rage, I’ll have you know. I unpacked it earlier while searching Reginald’s trunk for his linen sheets. I just finished putting him down for the night. He’s feeling absolutely horrible, you know.”

“Good.” Nash took a step forward. Once another cloudy night had set in, he’d lit every damn candle the room boasted then asked for more. He was getting a look at her tonight. All night.

His window was open, but he’d drawn the curtains, keeping the draft to a minimum. The light to a maximum.

And wasn’t it fortuitous, how the midday meal continued to occupy every passenger who had partaken? All but himself and the hat-wearing creature before him.

“His stomach still heaves every hour or so.” She began fidgeting with her gloves, pinching the end of each fingertip and pulling sharply, straightening the wrinkles along each finger, methodically working her way across her hand.

Nash liked the thought of the other man in pain. He took another step toward her. “Good.”

“That’s why I couldn’t get away earlier.” She swished past him when he came within arm’s reach—only because he let her—and walked around the bed, past the window and over to the nightstand. “I see you have plenty of candles this evening.”

“I do. Take off the hat, madam.”

She fluttered nervously. The bird atop her head flittered as if it wanted to fly off—to freedom.

Did she? Was that why she came veiled despite his specific order to the contrary?

Was that why, even now, though he could smell her desire once again, she seemed perched to fly away?

Nash consciously halted his advance. Gentled his approach.

He wanted her body with a fire that raged in his loins over and above that of taming the beast within. He wanted her. And he was confused as hell about it. “Tell me your name,” he demanded. “I’ve heard the fop call you ‘Eleanor’. What’s the rest?”

The startled, glass-eyed gaze of the bird jerked to his. He imagined hers did as well. “Well?”

“Eleanor Catherine Buckley, my lord,” she said promptly, responding to the authority in his tone. She left off fiddling with the candles and performed a curtsy fit for crazy King George. “But my grandmum and Mary always called me Laney.”

Ah, so patience brought reward. “Grandmum?” he inquired lightly.

“Died when I was eleven, my lord.”

Nash walked forward, pretended not to notice when she stiffened, and sat on the edge of the bed, close enough to touch her if he straightened his arm. Which he didn’t. Not yet.

She was cornered. Cornered in the corner of his room. And she knew it.

And he was between her and the door. The locked door.

A flare of possession ran through him. So she wanted him to buy her? To own her?

A woman or a horse…

Responsibility was looking better by the second.

“There’s no need to ‘my lord’ me, Laney,” he said, intentionally testing her name on his tongue. It felt almost as succulent as her pussy. “I’m a regular mister.”

If a man who annually battled the physical urge to change into a lion could be termed ‘regular’. “Mr. Nash Hammond ‘is your servant’s name, fair princess’.” After managing to impart that line without much mangling, he performed a mock bow from his sitting position on the bed. “Possibly at your service, depending on how the night progresses.”

He chose not to inform her his brother was the Marquis of Blakely. Didn’t know her well enough for confessions.

She remained silent. And unmoving.

The six candles he’d lit earlier showed her overly dressed form to perfection. She was a vision. In a pale sage dress, fancier than the typical style—done up to her chin, done down to her wrists—that hung heavily to the floor, hiding those pretty peach slippers apart from when she walked.

Except for that hat and that God-blasted bobbing bird. That hadn’t yet stopped twitching.

“Why are you anxious tonight?” Why do you wear the veil?

Why me? Why am I the one you chose to rescue you?

“Why’m I nervous? Um… Let me douse the candles and I’ll tell you.”

Before he could answer, she leaned over and blew out the two on the nightstand. Smoke drifted past the hat, giving Nash the impression that his dreams were soon to follow.

Dreams? Since when did he dream of soft-spoken wenches dressed in pristine finery locked in his bedroom—willingly?

Since forever…

Keeping her back against the wall, she edged past him. Rather than stop her, Nash cleared his throat. “One more. Leave the other three burning.”

She squeaked her displeasure but didn’t complain, doing as bade. Another flame extinguished. Leaving three. And a host of uncertainty.

At the far side of the room, she swiveled to face him. Gloved hands clenched. Bird unmoving for once.

Silence reigned.

“I’m waiting,” he reminded her.

“I saw something today that was rather unnerving. I—it’s given me pause, I’m afraid.”

He’d let her blow out three candles for that? “Take off your gloves.”

At the note of command in his voice, she moved to obey then hesitated.

Three, Nash. Three bargaining chips left. Use them wisely. “Remove your gloves. Blow out one more candle then tell me what you saw.”

See? He could sound calm. Even with the compelling need to tear her gown off—with his teeth—running rampant through him.

Each of her gloves came off in quick, jerky motions. Then she unexpectedly dropped them on the floor, the unstructured action making his heart catch.

With a puff of air, the candle was snuffed and she responded, subtly making her way to the remaining two tapers—but not so subtly that he didn’t notice. “I was in a meadow, one with an ornate gazebo. There was a couple reclining there…in a rather indelicate position…”

“Indelicate?”

“Um…sexual.”

Ah. Perhaps at one of their many unplanned afternoon stops, she’d caught someone indulging in an afternoon session of jigging buttocks. But why that should unnerve one with her experience he still couldn’t fathom. “Did you know them? Were they from the stage?”

“Um. Yes. I believe so. One of them at least. What, uh, confused me wasn’t so much what they’d been doing,” her voice had gone all low and husky, like a thick waterfall that cascaded through his veins instead of blood, “but what…what…”

“Go on.”

“Another candle? Please?”

Two bargaining chips left. But he only needed the light from one to see her clear as day. Nash stood, glanced at the pile of unlit tapers next to the bed and smiled. He began unfastening his shirtsleeves. “Certainly. Not yet,” he added swiftly when she leaned over, halting her actions. “I need for you to remove your dress first and finish your tale while you’re at it.”