Her passion smolders. Will it ignite?
Just released! Smoldering Passion (Passion series, Book One), unavailable since 2014, has been completely revised and edited and is now available at eXtasy books!
Coming soon to all major ebook vendors
Title: Smoldering Passion
Passion Series, Book One
Can be read as a stand-alone
Author: Adriana Kraft
Publisher: eXtasy Books
Publication Date: April 7, 2023
Length: 70,259 words
Genres: Erotic Romance, LGBT Romance
Pairings: MF, FF, FFF, FMF, MFM
Tags: Contemporary, Menage, Bisexual, New York City, struggling artist, age gap
Heat rating: four flames
Her passion smolders. Will it ignite?
When art student Melissa Hopkins finally unpacks the two boxes her Aunt Phoebe left for her and sees Phoebe’s black and white photos, it’s like opening Pandora’s Box. A simple quest to find a new job morphs into an about face—not just in her art, but in her career and personal life. Short on funds now that her graduate stipend is ending, she applies to work where Aunt Phoebe once worked: a center for sexuality and sex studies.
Sworn off women after a disastrous relationship, Center Director Harry Gage ignores the danger signals and hires the striking young woman who reminds him of his former lover. Her air of innocence will captivate center viewers, so he’s sure she’ll be a hit on camera. What he’s not prepared for is how she pierces his heart.
When the sparks flare up, is it love or just sex—and what must each of them risk to find out?
Melissa stood and rotated her shoulders. She had to get out of her apartment. It was a beautiful day, and she didn’t want to spend it all inside.
She grabbed her keys and some cash and headed down the stairs to street level. She walked briskly, suddenly knowing where she wanted to be.
Shortly, she turned in at the entrance to the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens and slowed her pace, pausing to watch the ducks in the Japanese water garden. This was space for relaxing – for breathing deeply, soaking in colors and breezes and scents. The riot of spring blooms was long gone, and summer was at its peak. She headed for the Shakespeare Garden and was relieved to find a shady bench empty in a secluded corner. Daisies, black-eyed Susans, and daylilies formed a casual cluster in yellow, white, and orange beside the bench. Further off, some taller mauve blooms she couldn’t name were full of butterflies, and a curly-headed toddler ran up to them laughing gleefully. The child’s parents stood nearby, holding hands, happy, as if they had no care in the world.
Melissa shook off a wave of loneliness. She waited till the family left and headed across the broad open meadow toward the rock garden, stopping to watch more children playing tag and hiding behind shrubs and bushes. An artist had set up his easel next to a large, tall tree that had one out-of-place, low-slung branch reaching several yards straight out, parallel to the ground. She could easily imagine relaxing under the protective boughs, but she knew better than to disturb his scene or ask what he was seeing.
The hairs on the back of her neck prickled. She stopped and turned around. Nothing seemed out of place – the children were still running with abandon, lovers walked hand-in-hand stopping for brief kisses – there! A man stood on a distant knoll watching where she stood. A hat pulled low on his head served almost as a mask.
She cocked her head to the side. Harry? She jogged toward the small hill. The man turned and scurried over the rise. When she crested it, there was nothing but trees, bushes, and flowers. Not a single person was in the little glade.
Harry was really getting to her. Now she was seeing him where she knew he never would be. She laughed freely and headed back to her apartment. Harry probably never left Manhattan.
* * * *
Not looking back, Harry scampered toward his car, parked a couple blocks away. That was close. What would he have said if she’d spied him? He didn’t often hang out in Brooklyn – though that had been changing of late. Brooklyn seemed quaint compared to Manhattan, but it was where she lived.
What would Melissa have said if she’d caught up with him? Would she be pleased to know he’d followed her? Or would she be frightened?
He chuckled. He didn’t think she’d be frightened. Maybe mad as hell, but not frightened.