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A collection of five varied and exciting stories that are perfect for summer and holiday reading.
Tourist Trap by Elizabeth Coldwell -
Kate and Mark have arranged to be taken to visit an out-of-the-way Romanian castle by Dimi, who Mark met in a bar. But as the handsome, dominant stranger leads them deeper into the woods, is Kate right to ...
A collection of five varied and exciting stories that are perfect for summer and holiday reading.
Tourist Trap by Elizabeth Coldwell -
Kate and Mark have arranged to be taken to visit an out-of-the-way Romanian castle by Dimi, who Mark met in a bar. But as the handsome, dominant stranger leads them deeper into the woods, is Kate right to fear that he might not actually be of this world, and what is his real reason for luring them to this remote location?
New World by Giselle Renarde -
Priya takes the window seat, her husband at her side. Next to him sits Fawaz, the lover she's struggling not to acknowledge. But clever Fawaz knows how to get a girl's attention: just strap her into a remote-controlled butterfly vibe before take-off. This is a story about Western freedoms, immigration delays and the budding of a polyamorous union.
Beach Peach by Alcamia Payne -
Jemima has a sexy love affair with the ocean. To her, nothing’s more of a turn-on, than all that loving attention from the rippling ocean waves and currents. However, deep down, Jemima is unfulfilled. She has a secret fantasy and she dreams of watery sex with a man who’s as passionate about oceanic frolics as she is. Anthony’s been observing Jemima’s sexy antics on the beach for a long time and he knows she conceals a secret and she’s not going to turn out to be your average beach babe. Is Anthony going to be able to give her what she craves?
Festivating by Leigh Clarke -
Carrie knows that the way to get Joe to notice her is to use her brains as well as her body – a sizzling summer festival gives her the chance to turn her scientific genius colleague into a lusty sex partner: all she needs is a stone circle and a research proposal.
The Battle of the Clans by Carmel Lockyer -
Summer in Scotland is usually all mist and midges, but for Christy, it’s even worse – mist, midges and misery. She wants a Master to take control of her life, but nobody’s replying to her personal ads. Can a Highland battle give her what she needs and is she willing to do what a complete stranger tells her, to prove that she’s a true submissive?
The village baked in the August sun as we waited for our guide to arrive. The single street around which a dozen or so houses clustered was deserted. The locals, who clearly had more sense than we foolish English tourists, were napping away the hottest part of the day in their homes. Even the mangy dog which had been gnawing on a bone when we arrived had disappeared in search of shade.
I glanced at my watch with growing impatience. The man should have been here 40 minutes earlier. ‘You realise he’s not coming,’ I said to Mark.’ But this is what happens when you make arrangements with men you meet in bars. They spin you a line, take your money and that’s the last you see of them.’
‘He’ll be here,’ Mark replied stubbornly, squinting into the distance for any sign of an approaching figure.
I dug in my back pack, rooted out a bottle of water and took a long swig. I shouldn’t have been surprised this was how our holiday was turning out. It was the way my boyfriend usually operated. Anyone else who wanted to explore Romania’s past would have booked themselves on a coach trip to see the famous castle at Bran. Not Mark. For him, a holiday was always about going off the beaten track. Tourist traps were for other people; he wanted to see the side of the country most people knew nothing about. Which meant taking a taxi to this pinprick of a village in the middle of nowhere and waiting for a stranger who intended to show us around the ruined castle nearby.
Even the taxi driver, initially so chatty and friendly, hadn’t believed we really wanted to come here. ‘You want to see castle, I take you to see castle – but somewhere else,’ he had said, as his cab bumped along the rutted road, the crucifix which hung from his rear view mirror rattling on its chain. ‘You ask me to take you to a bad place.’ But Mark had been insistent, and eventually the driver had lapsed into near-silence, repeating, ‘A bad place,’ to himself every now and again.
He hadn’t been even slightly mollified when Mark had pressed a 50 leu note into his hand, giving him an overly generous tip for his trouble. He simply turned the cab around and floored the accelerator, driving away as though he never wanted to see this place again.
And since then we had been scouring the middle distance – in vain, I was still convinced – for the man Mark knew only as Dimitar. Apparently, they’d got talking last night when Mark had popped into the bar across the street from our hotel to buy a pack of cigarettes, which was when his new friend had mentioned the castle. It wasn’t in any of the guidebooks, and it wasn’t a site even the most adventurous travellers just stumbled across. He could take us there for a reasonable price, he said, which was all it took for Mark to shake hands on the deal.
‘How much longer do we give it before you admit you’ve been well and truly conned?’ I asked. I wasn’t usually this sharp with Mark, but the heat didn’t agree with me and I was growing increasingly tetchy and short-tempered. Even if we hadn’t taken an organised tour, we could have found more pleasurable ways to spend today. Lying on the bed in our room in the guesthouse, with the window shuttered against the heat, while Mark slowly kissed his way down my naked body, for one.
I was just beginning to lose myself in an erotic daydream in which Mark roughly parted my legs and licked me ’til I came when I heard a voice behind me say, ‘I am so sorry to have kept you waiting.’
It was as though the man had appeared from nowhere. He was in his early 20s, much the same age as us, dressed in a loose white shirt and jeans that years of wear and washing had faded from black to dark grey. His dark, slightly lank hair fell almost to his collar. His skin was sallow and he had high cheekbones and an aquiline nose. A smile flashed across his face as he looked me up and down. In that moment, I forgave him his tardiness.
It wasn’t usual for me to find myself so deeply attracted to someone on first sight. Mark and I had been friends for months, gradually skating around the idea of becoming lovers before we had fallen into bed together one night after a house party thrown by someone he knew vaguely. With Dimitar, on the other hand, I was experiencing a hot, almost overpowering rush of lust, and I bent to put my water bottle away so he wouldn’t see the flush which had risen to my face.
‘It is good to see you both,’ he said in surprisingly good English, gripping Mark’s thumb by way of a handshake in a manner he must have picked up from some music video.
‘Nice to see you, too, mate,’ Mark said. ‘This is my girlfriend, Kate.’
Dimitar took my hand in a formal grip, and pressed his lips to it briefly. I shuddered in pleasure, even as I registered how unnaturally cool his skin was on such a hot day. ‘Nice to meet you, Dimitar,’ I said.
‘Please, call me Dimi.’ He smiled that pussy-dampening smile again. ‘And once again, I apologise. I would have been here sooner, but I had to deal with something.’ I waited for him to elaborate, but he simply said, ‘Come, I’ll take you to the castle.’
The two men fell into step, with me following slightly behind. Dimi looked just as good from the back: his jeans clung temptingly to his tight arse and muscular thighs. Not that Mark was any slouch in the arse department; it was one of the things which I’d admired about him even before we were lovers. I watched them as they made easy conversation, Dimi’s dark head bent close to Mark’s fair one, and thought that in other circumstances, like sharing a beer in the cool, dark interior of some bar, I might have enjoyed getting to know our new companion better.
Already we had left the village behind, the road – now little more than a cart track – beginning to wind into the mountains.
‘How far is this place?’ I asked, watching Dimi striding steadily on.
‘Not so far - 20, maybe 30 minutes’ walk,’ he replied blithely. Our progress was now very noticeably uphill, and my hiking boots – purchased in haste the day before we left England – were pinching my toes even through the thick socks I had on. I knew I would have blisters long before we reached our destination.
Mark had removed his T-shirt and was carrying it bunched up in his fist. Beads of sweat were crawling down his back, and I knew his shoulders would catch and burn in the sun, as they always did. Dimi, in contrast, seemed not to notice the heat, which was a shame. I would have loved to see him reveal the body beneath that baggy shirt.
We climbed higher, reaching the treeline. Somewhere above us, a bird – a crow, I thought, though it seemed bigger than any I’d ever seen back home – cawed in alarm and flapped up into the sky. Apart from its cries, and the throaty laugh Dimi gave in response to some comment of Mark’s, there was silence.
The trees began to close in around us almost without our being aware of it. It had the effect of cooling the temperature, but it didn’t do anything to quell my growing sense of unease. Just where was Dimi taking us? And what did he intend to do when we got there? I reassured myself with the thought that if he’d wanted to rob us, he could have done that the moment he’d met us – after all, there had been no one round to help us if he’d decided to pull a knife, or worse.
No, what was really alarming me were fears I could barely put a name to. Fairytales where characters were abandoned in the woods to perish; stories of creatures with fangs and claws who appeared in human form but reverted to their true, bestial self once night fell and the heroine’s guard was down.
Why was my head filling with such superstitious thoughts? It was another reason why Mark had wanted to steer clear of the organised tours: the tedious insistence on linking everything to the story of Dracula. As if vampires really lurked here. This was the 21st century, after all, even if the village down below us still resembled something from an older and more primitive time.
‘My castle,’ I heard Dimi announce, and hurried to catch up with him and Mark. I don’t know what I had been expecting, but it was something more impressive than this old, crumbling tower. I couldn’t believe I had rubbed my feet raw for this.
Mark didn’t seem to share my disappointment. ‘This is just how I knew it would be,’ he said. He pulled his camera out of his back pack and fired off a few shots, eyes shining with the excitement of seeing a place so few visitors knew about.
There had once been a stout wooden door, designed to keep out intruders, but it had rotted away, only the rusted iron hinges remaining. Dimi stepped inside, and invited us to follow.
As I looked round, taking in the remains of what must have been the great hall and the wide staircase that led to the upper levels, I felt a cool hand in the small of my back. ‘So what do you think?’ Dimi’s voice was strangely seductive in my ear.
‘I was hoping for something a little more–’ I searched for the right word, thinking of the beautiful castles I had seen in the holiday brochures. ‘You know, more turrets. Maybe some fortifications.’
He smiled. ‘Ah, but this – this is special. This has been here forever.’
That seemed easy enough to believe. I didn’t know when this tower had been built, but it was long before the pretty-pretty crenellations of the famous castles I had hoped to visit. There was a distinct atmosphere contained within these ancient stone walls, something distilled – I knew it instinctively – from suffering and pain as much as love and pleasure. But I still needed an answer to the question which had been nagging me since we had begun our climb. ‘So why do people think this is a bad place?’
Dimi snorted in derision. ‘They are foolish. They see danger in all the wrong places.’
‘So it’s quite safe to be here – with you?’
He pulled me close. I looked round for Mark, but he had gone charging up the staircase, keen to explore what might be above us. When I turned my head back to Dimi, he quickly bent his head and pressed a hard, urgent kiss to my lips.
‘What are you–?’ I began, and then I stopped pretending I could resist him. I returned the kiss with fervour, wrapping my arms round his neck. His groin was flush against my stomach and I could feel his cock, hard as stone, pressing into me.
Dimi’s hands burrowed up under my T-shirt, stroking my back softly before turning their attention to the clasp of my bra. Nonchalantly, he sprung it open, letting my full breasts spill into his palms.
That was how Mark caught us when he came racing back down the stairs, eager to share his discoveries with us; Dimi with his tongue pressed forcefully into my willing mouth and his hands squeezing my tits.
‘Kate, what do you think you’re doing?’ he asked, in a voice which suggested he didn’t entirely object to what he was seeing. For a moment, I wondered whether this might all have been some set-up, cooked up between the two men in the bar the previous night, and the real reason I had been brought here was to take part in a threesome. If that was indeed the plan, I was more than happy to go along with it. The thought of being fucked by both these men was already making my pussy drip.
Dimi’s next words made me reconsider. ‘She does as she chooses. You will watch.’