Rekindled by Adaline Raine

It’s the Ladder 54 countdown! Two more days until this scintillating new box set is released!! The preorder has just gone live, which means the sale price of $2.99 is in effect! Get your copy now, because when Ladder 54 publishes on Friday, the price will jump back to $4.95!

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What do you get when five smokin’ hot firemen put themselves up for auction to help with a charitable cause? How about anything a lady could want.

Five brand-new stories. Five weekends their ladies will never forget. These Doms have set the thermostat to ‘Panty Melting’… that is, if they’d let you wear them.

How about a sneak peek at the third story in the set?

Blurb:

Dakota Channing returns to the sleepy little town of Big Banks hoping to gather enough courage to explain to her ex-husband why she left, instead she bids on him at a charity auction. Now she’s won a night with a Dom, in all the ways she could imagine, and even in some ways beyond her wildest dreams.

Troy Channing didn’t expect his ex-wife to come back home for a event at the exclusive CCC cabin, or ever. Can he forgive the love of his life for abandoning their marriage or will they turn their legal separation into a divorce for good?

Warning: Contains intense BDSM scenes, anal play, spanking.

Chapter One

Troy Channing changed out of his turnout gear and into a pair of black jeans and a black fitted tee shirt. Sophie had explained in detail about this event being black tie and warned them to dress the part if any of them attended, but Troy didn’t own anything close to fancy so this outfit would have to do. Blake had let him borrow a pair of shiny dress shoes. Speaking of, the much taller man was headed directly for him. Blake was a laidback guy, so the furrow in his brow seemed out of place.

“Hey.” Blake leaned one arm against the bar. “Come take a walk with me.”

“Even as attractive as you are, my friend, I’m not a submissive and we’re not supposed to play tonight.”

“I need to tell you something and it’s important. Come on. It will only be a minute.” Blake shot him with a look.

Troy busted out laughing. “Don’t give me those come hither bedroom eyes. They won’t work on me.”

“I’ll break out the smolder.” Blake raised both eyebrows up and down. “I’ll do it.”

“Hard limit. Seriously. I won’t recover from that shit.” Troy held up his palms in surrender. “Lead the way. I’ll go with you.” He followed his buddy out of the main room and into one of the playrooms. It seemed a bit strange to have a serious conversation with a Saint Andrew’s cross and a spanking bench in eyesight, but they had been in stranger locations before. But in those locations they were usually wrestling fires and not having intense conversations. “Do I at least get a safeword?”

“This is serious, man.” Blake pinched the bridge of his nose and then dropped his hand. “Did you know Dakota came home?”

Troy stared at Blake for a full minute, then walked over and sat on the edge of the spanking bench, needing to brace against something for support. Of all the moments to bring up his ex-wife, why would Blake bring her up during an important event? “I’d have been less surprised if you ordered me to put my hands over my head so you could tie me up and have your way with me.” He took a breath and rubbed the back of his neck. “Shit. No, I didn’t know. Have you heard from her?”

“Not exactly.” Blake walked over to the cross and leaned against it. “According to Sophie, Dakota has been back in town for a few months, and she’s quite interested in the lifestyle among other things.”

“I appreciate the info, but why are you sharing this information now?” Troy would bet he didn’t want to know the answer. All those overnight shifts the two men shared with nothing else to do but play cards and talk about life gave Blake more insight into his relationship with Dakota than anyone else at the auction save Sophie herself. It meant a lot for the other man to consider his feelings, and he realized somewhere along the path of craziness they experienced while being firefighters they had also become friends.

“Dakota is in the other room. She placed the winning bet, which gives her full access to you for one whole night. I didn’t want you to be blindsided.” Blake shrugged. “I wasn’t sure if she had approached you before.”

“Fuck! No, she hasn’t reached out in years. Are you sure you don’t want to tie me up? At least I’d have a chance to escape.”

“Well, no, you wouldn’t, but don’t worry.” Blake grinned despite the topic of conversation. “I’m not planning on it.”

“All right. Noted.” Troy shook his head. “Did you see her?”

“Yes, she’s all done up in a tiny little black dress. It doesn’t leave much to the imagination. I prefer more modest cuts myself.”

“I bet you do.” Troy got to his feet. “I’m not sure what to do about the sudden appearance of my ex. Why the hell did she show up and bid on me? Why did she show up here after four years?”

“Dakota is the only one who can answer your questions.” Blake moved to Troy’s side and clapped him on the back. “Go talk to her. Next week you can tell me all about what went down between the two of you.”

“We’ll have plenty of time considering we’re working three overnights in the span of as many days.”

“Sure, it will break up the monotony of kicking your ass at cards,” Blake chuckled. “Actually, I never get tired of that.”

“Uh-huh.” Troy clapped him back. “I appreciate your concern more than you know.”

“You’re welcome. That’s what I do, make sure my brothers are well informed and not blindsided by anything.”

* * *

Dakota accepted the drink but did not tip the bartender. Guilt panged through her, but she’d overspent her pennies today, big time. Dropping a ton of money, money she didn’t have, on an auction showed her desperation. The cause hit close to her heart, Walt and Sophie, who had been there for her when no one else cared. Three months ago, Dakota had showed up on Sophie’s doorstep begging for advice. Dakota had returned to Big Banks hoping she could rekindle something with Troy as she’d left him alone, devastated and had never offered any explanation or provided closure. Sophie wasn’t old enough to be her mother biologically but she’d always offered a warm drink and an open mind with just a hint of maternal know-how.

Dakota had leaned on Sophie a lot during Troy’s recovery. The two women had met in a bookstore of all places, nothing kinky, and they’d connected right away. Sophie had encouraged Troy to talk to Walt about becoming a firefighter. Troy’s military background gave him all the prerequisites to enroll, and he signed up to become an interior firefighter after his physical therapist provided him the medical clearance to do so. Fighting fires and saving lives provided Troy an adrenaline rush he pretended he didn’t seek, as well as helping their community directly.

Dakota would give her last scrap of food if it meant she could give back to her self-adopted parents. Unfortunately, she was currently balanced precariously on the edge of massive debt and personal bankruptcy. How could she justify the two thousand dollar throw-down?

Fanning her face, she blew out a breath overcome with heat. Troy Channing would be hers for one whole night to do with as she pleased. Well, not exactly as she pleased. He would only control her under the parameters she’d set.

What if he refused to play with her? No, Sophie wouldn’t let him refuse, and since he thought the world of the older woman, he would follow whatever plans were in place. Why had Dakota gotten herself into this mess? She could’ve donated any amount of money to Sophie without showing up at an auction and raining dollars on Troy, her very ex-husband. No, she reminded herself. Sophie had refused to take her charity, and instead sent Dakota running errands for the event and helping out in other ways.

Still, the other woman never said she should bid on Troy; it had all been on a whim.

Liar. It hadn’t been a whim. No, she’d pawned out the last pieces of her jewelry including her engagement ring and wedding bands to afford this event and auction. Troy would be so pissed if he found out, but she should eventually tell him. They were both romantic at their core, and perhaps the two of them could reconcile their differences and give their love another chance. Reconcile? Dakota scoffed. She had run away from Troy. Fled out of the state. Shit. When had this idea sounded good to her?

Glancing up at the entrance to the room, her breath hitched in her throat. Troy scanned the space, looking for someone, and then his gaze settled on her. Oh, no! Someone must have seen her and reported back. Could it have been Sophie? Mingling with him tonight hadn’t been on her list of approved activities, and she wished for an invisibility shawl. His stare weighed on her face as he approached, and time seemed to slow as he met the distance between them. Focusing on him dragged the memory of their first meeting the forefront of her mind.

* * *

Ten years earlier…

“Whatcha whistling, Dixie?”

“It’s called humming.” Dakota rolled her eyes at the interruption. She had been intently listening to the jukebox in the back corner play ‘Pour Some Sugar on Me’ by Def Leppard while humming along to the beat. “Does that line ever work for you?”

“Sometimes,” he grinned. “Pick your poison, and I’ll buy you a drink.”

“Did someone dare you to talk to me? Or maybe I scream desperate to you?” She finished off the sip of alcohol in her drink, savoring the drop at the bottom of the glass even though it was watered down. “You sure don’t seem desperate enough to talk to me.”

“I’m not desperate, and I don’t think you are either.” He glanced around at either side of her. “Why are you sitting here all alone?”

“I arrived here with my friends. Thank you very much. Why don’t you go and scurry back to yours?”

“I don’t have any friends, Dixie, so I’ll just sit right here.” He motioned for the bartender to come over. “Two Fireball shots. Please.”

“I didn’t say I wanted Fireball.”

“Then it’s a good thing they’re both for me.” The man smirked.

“Drinks are on me. Thanks for all you do.” The blonde bartender nodded to him as she slid the glasses across the bar.

“It’s an honor.” He raised a glass to the bartender then hit both shots in a row.

“I never said I wanted any company,” Dakota protested as she plucked the cherry out of the ice melting in her glass and bit it off the stem. She chewed thoughtfully as she looked him up and down. The man sitting next to her could be on a billboard somewhere modeling underwear. She could count his six-pack abs through his tee shirt. Military tags hung around his neck to indicate some branch, though she couldn’t read which one. His hair had been buzzed clean against his scalp, so whether light or dark she couldn’t tell. The dimness of the bar also prevented her from seeing the color of his eyes, but they were expressive. She never imagined someone like him talking to her.

“Well, your disappearing friends are real bitches.” He turned the seat around on the barstool so he could survey the entire room. “From the way you’ve been downing water in between drinks you aren’t sure if they’re coming back.”

“Those bitches are my friends.” She stifled a laugh despite his spot-on assessment. “Please don’t call them bitches. Just leave me alone.”

“Well, sweetheart, I can’t in good conscience leave you alone.” He tilted his head toward the back of the room. “Those men are planning to jump you once you leave. I won’t let that happen.”

“Oh? I find it sweet you want to defend my honor.”

“Nah. Honor has nothing to do with it. I just really want to fight.”

“Why should I trust you?” The thought about the group in the back attacking her did worry her, but what if he was messing with her?

“I have no reason to lie to you. I’m trapped here in this boring little town until I’m deployed to Afghanistan. I might be here a week or I could wind up stuck for a month, depending on how fast they push the paperwork. You might not know me, but I’m chivalrous as hell. I’m not going to sit here and watch some assholes hurt a woman. Especially not a woman as pretty as you.”

“Well, shit. It’s a good thing I’m not an ugly broad.” She stood at five foot nine, taller than most of the women in this town. With gorgeous tan skin and jet black hair that fell in waves down her back, she heard compliments before, but her curves gave her pause. Some men didn’t like a women with a little extra sand in their hourglass figures.

“Heh,” he grinned. “I’d still teach those dickheads a lesson, but I wouldn’t be working as hard to impress you.”

“Wait a second. Are you trying to impress me?”

“Yeah. Is it working?”

“Maybe.” She bit down on her lip, then conceded to give him the benefit of the doubt. “What’s your name? If you’re going to get beat up for me, I should at least know who to send flowers to.”

“I’m Troy.” He extended his hand and she shook it. “You won’t need to send me flowers, Dixie. If even one of those upstanding citizens lays a hand on me, it will be the sorriest move he ever made.” He winked at her. “Oh, did I forget to mention? I’m a Marine.”

* * *

Dakota snapped back to the reality of the moment. She was in the here and now. She couldn’t do anything to alter the course of their initial meeting.

Accepting Troy’s request to come back to his motel room with him about ten or so years ago had started their relationship. They’d stayed in bed for two days, only getting up to order food and to shower. He took her hard and fast, unlike any other man she had been with. She liked his dominating manner, and how much attention he paid to her body. It didn’t take long for her to fall hook, line, and sinker. She never expected them to be compatible, but underneath the tough military exterior laid a heart of gold. Their sex lives sizzled off the charts, as they both had the same voracious appetite while matching each other’s desires and fantasies. Three months later the paperwork got stamped with the final seal of approval and they married in a small ceremony. Marrying had been Troy’s idea in case anything happened while he was deployed. His decision proved to be the best one he could have made. After his catastrophic injury, there would have been a lot of red tape for her to unravel if they had only been together and not married.

Sipping from the tall stemmed glass in her hand bought her a moment, but no more than that. Sparkling apple cider looked like champagne as long as you didn’t taste it. “What are you doing in here?”

“I’ve been here all night. Didn’t you see me on stage?”

“Yes, I mean obviously I saw you, but why are you talking to me?” She cocked her head to the side.

“Come take a walk with me, Dixie.”

“I paid in cash. No backsies.” Despite her reservations, when Troy held his hand out, she laced her fingers in his. She missed him so bad it hurt her heart and her head to think about it, but she couldn’t tell him all the reasons why. Plus, they hadn’t parted amicably. Did he harbor resentment?

“I’m not going to renege on the auction unless you leave me with no other choice, but I’ve got some questions. Do you care to answer a few?” He led her down the hall and into one of the private rooms.

She followed him inside, scanning the small area. It held a cot, a small two-seater loveseat, three cabinets, and a folding table. These rooms were typically used for aftercare. Sophie had offered her a complimentary tour a few months ago after the older woman convinced her to give the community a try. Dakota never imagined it would have brought her and Troy together. Sophie kept the information about Troy attending the club to herself. Instead Dakota saw him in his glory one night when she came out to observe a party at the CCC. She’d barely been able to contain her surprise and arousal the first night she’d seen him play.

Floggers and whips were his specialty and where he shined the most during a scene. Troy got into a zone, cranked up rock music, and floated leather strips across women’s backs, thighs, and butts like they were his canvas and his implement a brush. It was a sight to behold, but she’d never gotten too close. No, she couldn’t risk him seeing her.

Dakota had struck up a conversation with a woman a few weeks ago who had played the part of said canvas, and Troy had brought her an incredible endorphin rush, providing aftercare as needed. Dakota listened with an open mind, but tiny pangs of jealousy and guilt flew through her at the time. She wanted to be the one tied up by Troy. She wanted his hands on her body, and to be in his arms afterward for cuddles.

“Dakota.” He cleared his throat and her head snapped up. “I asked you a simple yes or no question. Are you going to answer me, or do I need to get creative?” Troy stared down at her expectantly.

“Yes, I’ll answer.” Her stomach did flips at his tone. What did he mean by creative? Could Troy possibly mean something more along the lines of discipline? He also seldom used her first name, and it made her feel like a naughty child.

“How long have you been coming to the cabin?” Troy sank down into the loveseat.

“A little while.” She sat on the cot, near him but not close enough to touch him. It was a simple question but the reasons revealed a lot more than she was ready to share. “How long have you been a dom?”

“I’m asking the questions tonight, but I’ll humor you with an answer to this one. I’ve been a dom as long as I can remember,” he chuckled. “I always had an inkling you might be submissive but we never explored it.”

“Why not?” Dakota blew out a breath. “I mean, things might have played out sort of differently.”

“Maybe, but I came home in pretty bad shape, Dixie. I wasn’t quite running on all cylinders. We didn’t get to know one another in person until we had already been married for two years.”

“Not running on all cylinders is putting it mildly,” she agreed. “I understand and as much as I hated seeing you in pain, I wouldn’t change what we went through together for anything. I watched you overcome some terrible challenges. I cried so hard when I saw you in the hospital. You were so doped up on pain medication, I doubt you even remember it.”

“I remember it, but it isn’t relevant at the moment. Focus on this, the here and now, and not on the past.”

“Oh, okay.” She swallowed hard. A rush of memories flew to the surface, but she pushed them back. No, she needed to focus like Troy advised her to do. “What’s your next question?”

“You left four years ago without so much as a glance back. Why did you come home?”

“You want to know why I came home?” Dakota scoffed. She might as well paint a bullseye on her head and hand him a hammer. It all centered around him, and somehow getting the two of them on the same page again. His parents had moved all the way out here when he got injured and they treated her like their own daughter during the ordeal. She had no remaining family of her own, and being away had done nothing to help her situation. Yeah, she had lost weight and stayed sober, but she’d felt so empty inside. An emptiness only Troy could fill. Dakota sounded pathetic in her own head, she couldn’t possibly tell him all the details. “It doesn’t matter, not anymore.”

“Repeating everything I say isn’t exactly a conversation.” He clenched and released his jaw. “Okay, then I’ll get to a more important question that’s been on my mind. If you hate me so much, why did you keep my last name?”

Fuck. He got straight to the point. She shouldn’t have expecting anything less. “I don’t hate you, Troy. I could never hate you. Legal separation doesn’t require you to change your name.”

“Fair point. Why do you still call my mother every Sunday?”

“I paid for you for one night, not the other way around,” she chirped. Her noncommittal answer did not help her cause. His questions dug deeper than she anticipated. She never wanted to change her name back to her maiden name, a name she had hated from the first time she saw her father abuse her mother both mentally and physically. Dakota had hated his last name more with each passing day. The man who created her had pushed too far, and beat her mother to death. She’d slipped into a coma and died when Dakota was only thirteen years old. Plotting revenge came easy, but her father did himself in one cold winter night with a dropped cigarette and a gas leak. No tears were ever shed for the monster who gave her life.

At least Troy had a good reputation. A wounded veteran. A loving husband. Why had she let things get so bad? She had been so stupid to leave. Could he possibly forgive her for all the shit she’d put him through? His mother had remained the one strong light in her life. Somehow the woman had forgiven her even when she couldn’t forgive herself. She owed Troy’s mother her life.

“You’re a million miles away.” Troy reached over and took her chin in between his thumb and index finger. He tilted it upward until their eyes met. “Why did you bid on me tonight?”

His closeness distracted her, and she shrugged in response to his question. No, she wasn’t ready to divulge everything.

“When I ask you a question, Dakota, I expect a verbal answer. You have refused to reply more than once. If you are unable to grant me enough respect to provide an answer, then we can’t move forward. We’ll part ways, and you can go back to whatever you were doing.”

“Wait, please? I didn’t think I would see you tonight. Not with so many other things going on. I’d been under the impression you would be occupied with more important stuff or working later or something.” Wetness pooled in between her legs and she pressed her upper thighs together, mortified over how quickly her body reacted to his dominance.

“The only important matter I’m occupied with at the moment is this one.”

“Sophie encouraged me to come to the auction tonight.” Dakota sighed when Troy moved back, and he let go of her face. “She told me if I didn’t show up, she would find someone to beat my behind until I changed my mind.”

“I certainly believe Sophie could have arranged that.” Troy joined her on the cot, then leaned back against the wall and crossed his arms behind his head. “What else did she say?”

Dakota shook her head, a decision she instantly regretted when she found herself upended and then placed over his lap. Troy smacked her once across both cheeks.

“You-you can’t spank me in here. There are rules.” Her thin gown offered no protection. She gasped from the sensation but she was more turned on than irritated.

“You aren’t following any rules. Why should I?”

“I haven’t agreed to anything yet.” She squeaked in protest when his palm seared the top of each thigh but when he landed two smarting blows to her full cheeks, she moaned. “Oh.”

“Hm. What was that?”

“I’ll answer one question but you need to release me immediately.”

“Is that so?” Troy tipped her forward slightly. It put her at the perfect angle for his hand to land at the soft juncture of her butt and thigh without removing any of her clothing. She should have worn a slightly longer dress, but he was probably happy for the length in this scenario. Troy expertly hit his mark, and after four good blows to each side, she cried out.

“Please stop, Troy.”

“Whenever you’re over my lap I expect you to call me Sir.”

She swallowed hard, fighting back tears. She should have thought this through better. Dakota thrashed against his muscled thighs, but the struggle did not free her from the position. The intensity of each slap increased as well as the speed of his hand. “Please!”

“Please what?”

“Please let go of me.”

“Wrong answer.” Troy raised her dress and then he focused his attention on the roundest part of her ass.

Her outfit boasted a short hemline, and she had gone commando to prevent panty lines. Another bad choice this evening. The sound of flesh hitting flesh resonated off the walls. After several more rounds, she wailed. He continued to spank her, hard and fast, while she cried. Dakota definitely questioned why she had been so eager to come tonight. Yet being held by Troy in such a precarious position gave her more satisfaction than she had experienced in quite some time. At the very least he cared enough to find out why she was here. He could have easily escorted her out of the building since Dakota wasn’t exactly holding up her end of the bargain. Speaking frankly and honestly to each other as well as disclosing certain sensitive information had all been mentioned in the twenty-five-minute pre-auction. Dakota had to sign a form acknowledging as much. If only Troy knew what hoops she had jumped through to ensure she would have enough money to throw down. He would be so disappointed in her.

“I’ll answer every question you ask me. I promise.” Dakota slumped against his thighs, exhausted from the physical battle as much as the mental one. “Sir,” she added in defeat.

“Good girl.” Troy tugged her dress back into place, then smoothed the fabric over her skin. “Why did you bid on me tonight?”

“Be-because I wanted to talk to you.”

“I’m listening. Go ahead and talk.”

“You expect me to talk to you while being held face down across your lap?” she snapped. The way he was holding her irritated her on a deeper level. She also hated the sensations flying through her as a result from his attention.

“What was that?” Troy pinched the top of her left thigh and then her right. She yelped. “You want another round?”

“No, Sir.” She blew out a breath, but he made no attempt to let her up. “I figured you would see me and make some comment about the stunning transformation I’ve gone through.” Dakota had lost eighty-five pounds since they’d last set eyes on each other. It had been a lot of hard work, but she’d managed to lose the weight at a healthy pace. Had it really been four years since they’d seen one another?

“You’ve always been stunning to me, Dixie. You’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever laid my eyes on. It’s a shame you can’t see yourself the way I’ve always seen you.”

“Yeah, I guess.” Troy had such a way with words. She knew he spoke the truth, just as he always did. He’d never made her feel bad about herself in any way. No, he’d always tell her how beautiful she looked. How had she managed to fuck up their relationship so badly? She could have explained what was going on in her head, but she’d stayed silent.

“What else do you want to talk about?”

“Nothing.”

“You got all dolled up, paid a crazy amount of money, all because you wanted to show me what you looked like?” Troy scoffed. “I call bullshit.”

“I might have missed you.”

“Oh? You might have?” He slapped his hand against her right cheek several times until she kicked her leg out. “I don’t like pulling teeth, Dixie.”

“That hurt! I missed you and I wanted to see you, and—” Her breath hitched in her throat. She swallowed around the sudden lump. “After I saw you playing at the CCC, I wanted you to spank me at some point.”

“You could have seen me without all this nonsense.” Troy turned her around, setting her next to him on the cot. He brushed a piece of her hair away from her face. “As far as spanking you? Well, I might have done that too if you’d asked nicely.”

“You didn’t have my permission to do what you just did.”

“Oh, I didn’t?” Troy chuckled. “You were given a fair warning. Just a little while ago, I promised to be creative if you refused to answer me. In fact, I gave you several chances.”

“I told you to stop.”

“You wanted me to spank you but only on your terms? Am I hearing you correctly? I want to verify.”

Shit. He’d painted her into a corner. Yes, she had wanted him to take her over his knee, something he seemed to do with ease, but only when she wanted it. However, she had rather enjoyed most of what they just engaged in. She trusted Troy more than anyone else in her life. What was her problem? Dakota bit down on her lip.

“I’ll make it real simple for you. Okay? Listen up, Dixie. You’re going to answer my next question without any bull. If the answer satisfies my curiosity, we can move forward with the terms of the auction. On the other hand, if you lie to me, I will go and find Sophie. I’ll pay her whatever amount you spent, and we’ll call it a night. No strings.” He slid his finger across her lip, and she stopped biting. “This is your last chance. Am I clear?”

“Yes, Sir.” Dakota hated how well the newly requested title slid off her tongue when addressing him. Damnit. Her body betrayed her by yielding to his demand, and she knew she’d better answer correctly.

“Did you come here with good intentions tonight?”

“Yes, Sir.” Dakota blinked back another round of tears. “I swear I did. I’ve seen you play, and I wanted to experience it myself. I should have gone about things a bit differently, but here we are.” She had so much more she wanted to say. Sorry for hurting you. Sorry for being a bitch. Sorry, so very sorry for walking out on you. Those words would come in time in hopes of getting him to trust her again. If he ever trusted her again.

Troy looked up at the ceiling. He rubbed his hand across the scruff on his chin, and seemed deep in thought. After several awkward moments of silence, he looked back down at her. “All right. I’ll take you at your word. What are you doing next Friday, Dixie?”

“I’m working. Fridays are my long days, ten plus hours. It’s the only day of the week where I’ve got the opportunity for a client lunch.”

“You don’t have clients out here.”

“You’re sort of right. I travel into the city, which is why Fridays are a bad day in general.” She blew out a breath. “I can check my schedule and text it to you.”

“We’ve got a few things to discuss before we get together. Limits. Fetishes,” he winked. “So, I’ll give you my email. I work three overnight shifts this week. Those are pretty brutal on my system since I picked up a few midday shifts as well. We’ll work out the details, line up our schedules, and then pick a later date. How does that sound to you?”

“Yeah, okay. I think it will work out.” She swore her world had tilted when the word fetishes fell from his mouth. When they were married, their sex life could be described as anything but boring, but knowing now he was into some of the things she’d only dreamed about, and read about, tweaked her buttons in a big way. “I mean it sounds good to me.”

“I wish you’d called me before the event and talked to me.” Rising to his feet, he then held his hand out to her. She accepted it once more, and she stood as well.

“I figured you wouldn’t want to talk to me, maybe ever again.”

“I’d say you were pretty bold to bid on me if you believed that. It’d be very awkward to spend a night together without speaking.”

“You’re right again, and I should’ve called you. Thank you for listening to me tonight. It was really nice to see you.”

“You’re welcome, Dixie.” Troy squeezed her hand, and then he led her out of the room.

Her thoughts were flying at a hundred miles a minute. Somehow she would fix the mess she’d made between them.

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Rekindled by Adaline Raine is available only in the Ladder 54 box set, due to be released this Friday, 8/31 and on SALE NOW!!

About the Author:

Adaline Raine is an international bestselling author. She is an avid reader of all romance but loves contemporary and paranormal the most. What’s sexier than an alpha werewolf, dominant shifter, or bad-boy vampire?

Adaline adores creating graphics for others. She has designed custom banners and buttons for various blog hops throughout the community. Email: brattyadaline@gmail.com if you would like her to create something for you!

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