I’m editing a previously released scifi romance in preparation for re-release. It’s mainstream scifi (but was erotica). Taking out the graphic content means the story itself shines for a whole new audience.
The story deserves an all new cover as well. It’s had two previous ones. The first one was by Laura Givens, and the second by Anne Cain. The Author’s Secret did this one. Since I own the business, I have to brag. Our custom covers come with a month of ad space on The Romance Studio, and a month of DMCA Take Down service from Book About.
This is the first book I ever wrote, and it’s in need of some shaping. I’ve written other books since, and this is in the same universe as they are. I’ve fine tuned details since this came out. This is not the absolute final version, but it’s not likely to change much. I’ve even rewritten the blurb to better fit the story.
I’ll be sharing info on how and why I edited various scenes as I recreate the book. This is the first in a series and contains the new blurb, as well as the first two pages.
At the Mercy of Her Pleasure
Here are the blurb, and the first three paragraphs of At the Mercy of Her Pleasure. I hope you enjoy it.
If he touches her, he’ll be at the mercy of her pleasure.
Professional thief Senth Antonello is hired to retrieve a stolen prototype for which the imperial armada has already killed twice. When Senth’s brother is kidnapped to ensure the device is surrendered, Senth must rescue his brother, outsmart the armada, and keep the item out of imperial hands. All doable, except for one small problem. Senth must accomplish it in the company of a genetically altered woman whose pheromones could enhance the mission or crumble it into dust with a single siren kiss.
Once in the shadows, Senth Antonello shoved back the hood of his sensor-blocking cloak and fanned his face. The Thieves’ Guild tech let him hide from copbot scans, but it didn’t cool him. Using his fangs, he loosened first one glove, then the other, and peeled them off. He tucked them into one of dozens of hidden pockets in the cloak.
The faint sound of gang chant carried in the chilled night air. Gangs in the Crooktown District hunted mixed breeds like him. At first glance, Senth appeared human, but with his catlike eyes and fangs, no one could miss his Kin nature. In moonlight, his eyes glowed.
The chant grew louder, along with the sound of glass breaking. The deeper darkness that followed meant two things: another streetlight had met its end, and that gang was closer than Senth had thought.
You come down here I skin you. Senth flattened himself against the brick wall. I skin you, the Grand Master skins me. Let’s do each other a favor, huh, boys?
Worse, the Grand Master would inform Senth’s Sen’dai. His guild master. The crime lord all the other crime lords feared. The Man. The Harbinger. Luc Saint-Cyr.
The Guild didn’t accept non-humans, unless they were enslaved to a human member. No one could rise past level ten, unless related to a human member. Marriages and adoptions happened, regularly. So, to keep the Guild happy, Saint-Cyr was Senth’s lord and master and his adoptive father.
No way Senth wanted the Man angry with him. The last time he’d almost…
Don’t even go there. Senth shook off the thought, drew his hood forward again, and edged around the corner into a darker alley. “Ffffftt!” The Kin cuss word hissed past his fangs. Where are you? Come on, you have to be close. Senth’s HalfKin senses caught the scent of his quarry.
Pressed against the wall, Senth slipped around one last corner, and hunkered down. He melted into the concealing darkness behind a barrel, and narrowed night-sensitive eyes.
His human half brother leaned against the opposite wall of the trash-strewn alley. Khyffen Antonello’s blond hair shone in the muted light. A female pinned him, arms around his neck. She tore open Khyff’s shirt and ran her hands over his chest.
Senth folded himself into the tight space behind the barrel and settled in to wait. Protection of his brother went before any assignment, at least tonight. Family came first.
Senth’s mother had died after birthing him. Khyff, who’d been three, had been sold into slavery. Neither of them knew the other lived until a month ago. Neither had a clue about their biological fathers. Until Khyff had found him, Senth’s only “family” had consisted of the Man.
Pulling out Saint-Cyr’s note, Senth read it once more. Get your half brother and meet me at The Ghost. I have a job for you. Do it, and I’ll buy Khyffen and free him, but it’s going to cost you.
Of course it would. Senth slipped his gloves back on. The Man didn’t do anything for free. But if it got Khyff out of that hellhole, Senth would do it. Leaning out from behind the barrel, he spied Khyff.
His brother had clenched his fists, eyes squeezed shut, face lifted to the night sky, mouth open in a silent scream.
Senth’s master had raised him to believe that no one should have to sell himself to survive. Saint-Cyr owned one slave only, and that was Senth, and only so he could rise within the Guild. They might not agree on how but they did agree on what.
Khyff needed his freedom.
At the Mercy of Her Pleasure will be out by the end of July, along with its sequel, For Women Only (Khyff’s story). To get one email when one of my books is released, sign up on Author Alarms. You can also subscribe to the newletter and follow the blog. Both options are listed on the left.