When Zevon and Christophe are accused of being traitors to Nylar, they both believe the truth will come out and justice will prevail. But the Blueshift Brotherhood has targeted them and the two men end up with the Nyral Mistresses to be broken. Hope seems gone for the two lovers and they come face to face with their inner secrets when they face the most infamous Mistress of all: the Ball Breaker.
Mistress Andia Cyrus has broken thousands of criminals, turning dominant men into slaves. The two men she’s handed this time, however, are not the usual type she’s used to. They seem to be innocent, for one thing. For another, they’re in love. And for another, she’s starting to fall for them. She begins to dig deeper and soon finds a Blueshift Brotherhood assassin on her tail.
Fate seems to drag them together and Andia, Christophe and Zevon discover they can only survive if they are marked for surrender.
Numb, Andia stumbled to her feet and back up the stairs. Everything that had happened in the last forty-eight hours had cemented something within Andia. She was alone. No family. Nothing.
Her hand shook when she opened the door to the main living quarters of Mya’s cabin. Why was she surprised the two men were still there? Part of her had expected them to run, leave while they could.
They stood close together, clearly arguing, yet the sexual tension in the room was so thick she could smell it. Rather than address it, she crossed the room to the decorated tree in the far left corner of the room.
Mya’s penchant for ancient traditions had been a pleasure to enjoy for Andia. The tree, artificial but lifelike, exuded the same scent a live tree would. The lights were globe lights but looked like the string lights used on Old Earth.
Under the tree was one gift wrapped in gold foil with her name on it.READ MORE
With trembling hands, she reached down and picked up the box. She tightened her fingers on the gift. It was a tradition they had started eight years ago here in this room. Gift giving. Her gift to Mya was still in her room at Muan, an ancient book called A Christmas Carol by an Old Earth author named Charles Dickens. It had been translated into Universal, but it had still cost a fortune since it was paper and glue.
Tears blurred her vision. She swallowed, then took a deep, shuddering breath. Carefully she untied the glittery bow and tore open the foil. A metal box shined in the glowlight. Andia pressed the button on the top of the container, and it slowly opened.
She peered inside, and her lips trembled when she saw what Mya had given her.
A Placidian star.
They were hard to get, expensive, beautiful, and magical, so it was said. Pulsing with energy, the star was certainly gorgeous.
No one knew their power source. The star was about four inches tall and four inches wide. The center was a crystalline blue, like a still lake. The points were gleaming white. Its hum was almost musical.
“A Placidian star,” Christophe said softly. “I’ve never seen one up close.”
“I’ve never seen one at all,” Zevon said. “What is it?”
“You know about Placido, right?” Christophe didn’t take his focus off the star. “A mysterious planet abandoned by its people, mystical powers said to be exercised by the ruling family. The Placidian stars are relics of the days when people lived there.”
Andia smiled at Christophe. “They made them at Christmastime to celebrate the Star Blessing. Each star was said to grant a wish.”
Christophe’s stare focused on her. Why did it seem that his laserlike attention was exactly the same as when he had studied the star? “A rare and beautiful gift.”
She nodded. “Mya was family.”
“I’m sorry, Mistress,” Christophe said in a low voice.
“She died doing what she was bred to do,” Andia said, proud that she'd kept her voice hard and steady.
“It was much more than that,” Zevon argued. “She obviously cared for you.”
Andia snorted. “Why? Because she gave me an expensive gift?”
Zevon’s eyebrows rose. “I can tell from the look on your face when you opened the gift. It didn’t matter what was in that box.”
She blinked away unwanted tears and turned away from the two men. “She always said I worked too hard, didn’t go after what I really wanted.” Few people knew what Mistress Andia wanted. Only Mya had known.
Had it been their first weekend here, in the desolate mountains, that Mya had tapped into Andia’s true desire? She glanced back at the two men who had hidden their natures from friends and family. Was she any different? Only Mya had known what Andia was beneath her skin.
Mya had allowed Andia to explore all sides of her sexuality, and the older woman hadn’t judged her. Their times here had been few and far between. And precious.
Here she had found true release in pain and submission. Not the submission she demanded from those she broke. She gave to Mya, and her guard gave back. It never felt unequal or powerless. It was something special, although Mya always told her Andia needed a dick to really surrender.
She smiled and contemplated the star. Only Mya had known that Andia sought the impossible: a man who both submitted and dominated. A man who could kneel when she needed him to and a man who could stripe her back with cleansing, painful blows when she desired it.
“She was your lover,” Christophe said in a whisper.
Could Andia make them understand? “She was -- She was the only one who understood I was more than just the Ball Breaker.”
“Like me,” Zevon stated. She turned to meet his steady gaze.
“Like you.” Was that what she’d seen in him? She couldn’t deny that there was a camaraderie and understanding between them. He was no submissive. She knew that. Yet, she felt in her gut that he would surrender to her. “There is no question in my mind that I can break you.”
Zevon stepped closer, and Andia inhaled sharply. He towered over her, but many men did. Something in him, something in her clicked together. When he spoke, his words resonated through her. “There’s no question in my mind that I could break you.”
Her pulse pounded, and she resisted the urge to retreat. She was like him. And he saw what Mya had glimpsed. Pride forced her to stand up to Zevon, even though he was right. She snorted. “What would be the fun in that?”
For a charged moment, they remained toe-to-toe, neither willing to give an inch. In his face, she could see his desire for her, his need. When his hot gaze flicked to Christophe, the heat in the room spiked. Her head spun, and instinctively she knew what his next words would be.
He shook his head. “Honestly?” Suddenly his hand shot out and yanked Christophe closer. “I’d have more fun if you broke him.”
“Are you sure you’re not avoiding what you know will happen?” And it would. Her nerves tightened in anticipation for the fight. There would come a time when Zevon would submit to her and give her the sweet taste of his surrender.
“What we had in the conclave was never finished.” Zevon’s voice held a dark, sensual purr that seemed to vibrate straight to Andia’s pussy. “I want to watch you work,” he said.
The way Christophe’s eyes dilated and his breath shortened into gasps turned her on. But it was the way he resisted Zevon, the way his arm muscles tightened, trying to pull away, that made her step forward. She set the box with the star on the small coffee table and closed the distance between them.
“Why?” she asked Zevon.
“I love to watch him surrender to you.” Zevon’s hand tangled in Christophe’s hair. He yanked Christophe’s head back and put his lips against the other man’s throat. Zevon’s voice was muffled against Christophe’s skin as he explained. “When he surrenders to me, he holds back. He gives only the rougher, harder parts of himself.” Zevon’s dark gaze met hers. “But with you, he surrenders all of himself.”
“No --” Christophe groaned and jerked in Zevon’s hold.
Zevon tightened his hold and looked into Christophe’s face. Andia noted the fear that twisted Christophe’s features, the way his throat moved when he swallowed, and the nervous swipe of his lips as he licked his lips. Zevon didn’t loosen his hold. “Yes. It scares you, I know, to let go, to trust her with me here. You believe it makes you disloyal to me.”
Christophe’s stillness made Andia’s gut clench. He blinked twice. “I don’t want to lose you.”
Without taking his gaze off Christophe’s face, Zevon asked her, “What about it, Mistress Andia? Do you only want him?”
“You know I want you both,” she answered. Want was too mild a word for the volcanic emotions that boiled in her blood. Her head spun, and her heart pounded. Part of her was afraid to reach out and grab the moment.COLLAPSE