Two lost souls, one powerful connection. As a Dom for Club Moon, Nick Santos uses bondage to alleviate his anger at being forcefully changed. And when he meets Gwen Waters, his carefully controlled world is turned upside-down. Through her, he'll learn what true self-control is and that being a vampire has its benefits.
Freshly divorced from an abusive ex-husband, Gwen doesn't want another domineering man. But when she meets Nick, a world she only fantasized about is laid before her. Can she trust a Dom who's also a vampire? And can Nick be the man she deserves?
When it comes to Artfelt Expressions, Gwen is fearless and headstrong. She brought a dying frame shop back to life and meekness would get her nowhere.
Yet with men, she's the complete opposite. Growing up doing Glitz pageants didn't leave her much time for boys. The only man she's slept with was her ex-husband. How much emotional risk should she take with Nick? She relishes her freedom and won't go back to being oppressed. If that means leaving Nick then so be it.
“Do you want a tour?” Gwen quietly asked. Her eyes grew wide when Madonna’s Erotica started, causing her cheeks to heat. Not the song for a first date.
“Only if you want to,” Nick replied, a mischievous twinkle in his eyes. “I’m enjoying the music. Very appropriate given our conversation earlier.”
“I love this song, actually.” Cheeks burning, Gwen couldn’t look at Nick. “I get embarrassed by the silliest of things.”
“I find your blushing adorable.” Nick’s amused eyes were riveted on Gwen. “Everything about you enthralls me.”
A fresh bloom came to Gwen’s cheeks as she absently tucked a wisp of hair behind an ear. She was well-aware of Nick’s attraction to her. “Why? I’m terrible at flirting and not good with clever banter. And the whole intimacy thing is terrorizing.” Her vision blurred from growing tears as Nick walked around the couch. Fun date you’re turning out to be, Gwen.
“You’re being too hard on yourself.” Nick held out a hand to Gwen. He turned her wrist over and rubbed slow circles over her erratic pulse with his thumb. “Stop trying to be perfect. I’m not here to judge you. Be yourself, not what you assume I want.”
As her eyes followed Nick’s fingers, Gwen’s breathing grew calmer. The sensual feel of his skin distracted her from her anxiety. And she stood close enough to catch his scent, causing a heated flush between her legs. She wanted his hands caressing more than a wrist. “I’ve certainly never had that said to me.”
“It’s the truth.” Nick lifted Gwen’s chin until their eyes met. “I’m not reading your mind and won’t know your thoughts if you hide them.”
“I have a hard time trusting what you say,” Gwen confessed. “My opinions never mattered. Why change that now?”
“You really think I’m lying?” Nick asked with a raised eyebrow. “Do you realize how many women I’ve met over two centuries? None mean anything to me and blur together.” He leaned closer to Gwen, whose eyes were guarded. “I asked Tara to introduce you to me. She speaks highly of you, which added to my curiosity. From that first meeting, I knew you were more than your meek exterior, and I know it even more now. I’m not keeping my opinions from you. Don’t hide yours from me. Okay?”