Excerpt from THE GREATER GOOD
edited: Sunday, October 07, 2007
By Susan Kelley
Not "rated" by the Author.
Posted: Sunday, October 07, 2007
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Juston Steele and Katerina must learn to make the most of their arranged marriage.
I wanted to share my exciting news. THE GREATER GOOD is now available in print as well as ebook format from New Concepts Publishing. Here's a small blurb and a new excerpt. Visit my website for even more excerpts from THE GREATER GOOD, and the second book in the Solonia Chronicles, THE LESSER EVIL, which will be released soon.
Read this review from COFFEE TIME ROMANCE where THE GREATER GOOD earned a 5 cups rating!
THE GREATER GOOD
New Concepts Publishing
Rating: 5 Cups
"Lady Katerina, princess of Solonia, went to the Realm on a mission to save her people from dying out. With her mother and a few other high officials, she helped work out a bargain where one of the men from the Realm would come back to Solonia and become her husband and mate. But would she get more than she bargained for?
Juston Steele was a squad leader for the Realm security force. He was not prepared when he was involuntarily volunteered to become Lady Katerina’s husband. He was forced to leave his home, friends, and career for no reason other then the highest ranking official in his land wanted him out of the way.
Katerina and Juston's story had you going from the beginning. You as the reader got a sneak peak into a world that is so wonderfully imaginative you wished you could be a part of it. I absolutely loved reading this book! What a wonderful surprise this story turned out to be. It had everything you could ask for in a book; love, danger, suspense, and understanding. This is a story that showed you it is possible to bridge cultures, genders, and prejudice. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves futuristic romance."
A NEW EXCERPT FROM THE GREATER GOOD:
Katerina wished her friend had stayed. The silence that followed her departure felt awkward and hostile. She angrily put away her guilt. Enough was enough.
“Please be careful tomorrow. The western lands can be dangerous,” Katerina said, hoping to start even a mundane conversation.
“Worried I might get killed before we produce that baby you’re willing to sacrifice everything to have?” Just’s sarcasm toppled the thin control Katerina held on her temper.
“Perhaps. It would be very inconvenient to travel to the Realm to pick another arrogant, stubborn, unforgiving, cold and remote man whose only goal in life seems to be to set a record for the amount of food consumed by a single person.” By the time she finished, Katerina stood facing Just. Her voice rose with each word so she shouted the last few. She refused to step back when Just stood and towered over her, his face dark and stormy.
“I don’t eat that much,” he growled.
Katerina blinked, taken back by his response.
“I can’t help it if you serve inadequate meals.”
A few women walking across the front lawn area slowed to listen and watch. Katerina glared at Just. How dare he try to divert her anger by picking out the minor insult and ignoring the others? Didn’t he know how to argue? She wrapped her royal dignity around herself and stared at the onlookers until they moved on to attend their business. “Could we please continue this discussion in private?”
Just looked around as if noticing their public position for the first time. He took Katerina’s arm in a firm but gentle fashion. “I know a place.”
He led her across the lawn and past the horse corrals. He started down the path to the cold mountain lake much to her surprise and pleasure. She loved the lakeside. The land dropped enough to hide them from the settlement and then flattened out to a rocky beach. Only the calls of a few birds and the soft slap of the water on the shoreline disturbed the peace.
Katerina stared at the lake, searching for the calm she had found here only a short time ago. Before leaving for the Realm to choose her mate, she had spent time here searching for her courage and her hope. Now she sought that optimism again.
She watched Just pace a short distance from her. He picked up a fist sized stone from the beach and threw it far out into the water. His mouth turned down in a frown as if the action displeased him. He repeated the action with a larger rock.
Muscles rippled beneath the light brown shirt she had made for him long before she met him. A light breeze ruffled his finger length hair, blowing it back from his face as he stared across the lake.
Katerina walked to a flat boulder a few steps away and sat so she could watch him. Vilicia had assured her Just was unequaled as a fighter, strong and quick as well as intelligent. Though her contact with men was quite limited, she thought he must be an exceptional example of the gender.
He continued to toss stones into the deep water. She watched, admiring his physique and calling up erotic memories of their wedding night. As if she didn’t already think about it twenty times each day and most of every night. She undressed him in her mind, the memory of him totally nude heating her middle.
* * * *
Just tired of waiting for his wife to speak.
Tired was the important word. Tired of being the outsider. Tired of training from dusk to dawn to avoid Katerina’s presence. Tired of fighting his attraction to her. Tired of being alone. Hell, he was even tired of being hungry.
The battle of wills they fought couldn’t go on much longer. He hadn’t the patience for it. And he didn’t think he could win. She wasn’t even going to offer a token apology for the damn collar. He wanted to hate her for that. For his crushed pride.
Tossing another rock as far as he could, Just examined his feelings. He hated doing it, but things were getting desperate. He preferred action to introspection. What did he really want?
Long term, he wasn’t sure, but right at this moment he knew exactly what he wanted more than anything else in the world. Tomorrow he would leave on what could be a dangerous expedition. Tonight he wanted to experience the intense pleasure he had had the night before the collaring. He wanted to make love to his wife.
Just rolled his admission over in his mind. It was his marital right to make love to her and according to their agreement, it was also his duty. He glanced at Katerina. She stared back at him. How might he explain his decision to her? They had barely spoken the last five days.
Just took a step toward her, prepared to call some type of truce. Then he met her hot stare and the words stuck in his throat. His body responded to the flaming desire he recognized in her deep brown eyes. He walked toward her, drawn like a bee to a glass of sweet tea. She dropped her gaze to the front of his pants. When his next step carried him within her reach, she touched his erection. Then she squeezed.
Just’s breath whooshed out of his lungs as if she had punched him. She slid her hands up his sides and tugged at him.
He eased her to her back and lowered his weight on her. Saints! The feel of her beneath him almost sent him over the edge of control. She opened her mouth as he sought her lips. Her hips rose to press against him as he rubbed his palm over her hard nipple. He lifted away from her and tugged down his pants, wondering at his frantic haste but too far gone to care. He wasn’t tired anymore.
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