All summer long we’re featuring great e-books at great prices as part of our “Pocket Star-E Nights” program! With the help of some amazing blog partners (our “Shooting Stars“), we’re sharing some deliciously decadent excerpts of these terrific novels. If you like what you’re reading, you can purchase the book via the buy links just below this post.
The following excerpt is from Nicole Camden’s e-serial, The Fetish Queen. Reborn is Pt. 1 of this sizzling story of a woman who takes off to Florida to run a sex shop owned by her best friend. It’s just too bad she can’t get along with Max, the local pub’s owner… And the best part? If you love what you’ve read, you can buy it for just $1.99 by clicking the buttons at the bottom of this post.
“Let’s go,” Sarah whispered to Colleen and Megan when she managed to get her breath back.
They hurried to the dressing room, but there was no sign of her mother anywhere.
“You should go,” Megan told her in the weird, garbled way she talked. She didn’t like to show her teeth and covered them with her top lip as she spoke, so every now and then a low whistling sound would accompany her words.
“Okay,” Sarah agreed, knowing something must have gone wrong.
“Where exactly? I don’t have a car.” One of the girls had picked them up and brought them to the club tonight.
“Ask Toby,” Megan said and quickly walked off, her chest leading the way.
Toby, one of the bouncers, was a former football player who’d suffered one too many head injuries, but he was nice enough. He’d give Sarah a ride if she asked him.
Sarah retrieved her books from the gold chair and gathered her shoulder bag from the floor beside it. Something fell off—a note—just as she picked up the bag. It was a note in her mother’s handwriting.
Run, baby. He’s out.
Sarah read the note three times, her hands shaking. She didn’t want to do this, didn’t want this to be real. She’d hoped—believed—that her mother’s drunken rants were just that—rants. She didn’t want to leave.
Sarah hurried out of the building and nearly ran into Toby, who was smoking a cigarette with some of the other bouncers under a dim overhead light at the back entrance. They usually hung out and smoked on their breaks, especially now that the nights were mild.
“Hey, Toby, can you take me home?” Sarah asked in a breathless rush, looking up at the shadowy figures of the men. Some of them were strangers with odd clothes. One of them said something she didn’t understand; she thought maybe it was in Russian.
All the men laughed except Toby, who looked a little confused.
“Sure, girl. You got your stuff?” He threw his cigarette down on the gravel and ground it out with his foot.
“Yeah.” Sarah nodded, ignoring the looks the other men were giving her, and moved closer to the big man.
“All right, then,” he told her, covering her shoulders with a friendly arm and leading her away.
The men laughed again. Sarah walked a little faster, tugging on Toby’s arm.
He moved with her, probably not understanding her urgency but responding to it nevertheless. He opened the door of his classic 1968 Chrysler New Yorker, a huge blue boat of a car that he maintained with pride.
She waited impatiently, looking out the back window as he checked all his mirrors and turned the key. The car roared and shook as its massive engine turned over. Gravel crunched beneath the tires and all Sarah could think was, Hurry, please, hurry.
They pulled out of the lot without incident, and before long the bright purple and white lights that spelled out DOMINOES disappeared, and there was only desert all around them. Toby drove carefully, humming to himself.
Sarah relaxed in the front seat. Maybe I overreacted, she thought, picking at her thumbnail, but the knot in her stomach told her otherwise.
She was hyperaware of everything around her, the sharp, percussive thumps of exhaust from the muffler, the dark, dense navy blue of the leather on the dash, the bright reflective sheen of the chrome in the streetlights as they drove.
“Toby, can you hurry?”
“Sure,” he said. He seemed to hesitate, as if he knew it was wrong to ask but didn’t know what else to do. “Can you tell me how to get there?”
Sarah nodded. “Sure, just take the next exit.” She directed Toby to pull into a space well away from her apartment. She never took an obvious route and made sure to change things up each time. Her go-to entrance when she felt unsafe was one of the fire escapes in the back that led to the kitchen window.
“Thanks, Toby,” she told him as she shoved the car door open.
“You better go back to the club now.”
“Okay, Miss Sarah. You be safe.”
Sarah hurried out of the car and let the weight of the door slam it shut before she moved quickly toward the back of the building. She didn’t see any strange cars in the lot but didn’t want to take any chances.
She squeezed between the dark shadow of the apartment Dumpster and the rough stucco of the building, disturbing some of the feral cats that slept on or beneath it during the heat of the day. One of them yowled at her and she hissed back.
She located an old umbrella she kept hidden nearby and used it to tug down the bottom rung of the fire escape. It hit the ground with a crash that made her wince, but she began climbing quickly, hanging the umbrella on one of the rungs. It didn’t take her long to reach the landing on the third floor, where the window into the breakfast room was cracked just enough to allow her to lift it open.
She slid the window open quietly and eased her way in, careful not to make a sound, placing her feet very carefully and deliberately, keeping the curtain between her and the rest of the room, holding her shoulder bag securely so it wouldn’t swing and hit anything.
Once she was all the way in the room, she stopped and listened carefully.