Beyond Reckless - Short Story
Regency-set D/s M/M erotic romance
Release date: 2/12/2014 (2nd edition)
Word count: 6,100
Story Behind the Story - for behind the scenes info on the book
It's the eve of Mr. Rys Palmer's 25th birthday. A significant birthday, for it's when he'll come into his majority and gain full control of the inheritance from his obscenely wealthy grandfather. But the promise of a fortune isn't what gets Rys's blood pumping.
Mr. Martin Trent's well aware of his lover's propensity for thrills. After four years together, he knows just how to indulge Rys without risking either of their reputations or their necks. But clearly Rys's taste for more than a hint of danger has rubbed off on him. Beyond reckless to ask Rys to meet him at a ton ball to give Rys his gift. Yet Martin can't resist the opportunity to give his lover a birthday he'll never forget.
Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: D/S theme and elements, and male/male sexual practices.
Author’s Note: This is a previously published work. It was originally published in 2010. This second edition has been edited. For readers who purchased the original edition, this second edition is not substantially different.
© Ava March
“You may need to look for me.”
The words echoed in his head. Martin had spoken so casually, but Rys should have guessed his lover had not been strictly referring to the crush of people who attended such functions.
A smile teased the edges of his mouth. An honest to goodness search. Definitely interesting.
He turned on his heel. The back garden and the balcony were out of the question. A light rain had just started to fall when his carriage had pulled up to the tidy mansion on the outskirts of Mayfair. Just to be certain, he paused as he passed the card room, but he knew the room would hold no one of interest.
No, not the general areas of the house. He would need to look someplace more…private.
The trace of frustration that had seeped into his veins when he’d entered the ballroom was now gone. In its place was the distinct spark of excitement. Of anticipation. Of the added thrill of the hunt.
And to think he had thought staid, old Lady Edgecomb’s ball would be a thoroughly dull affair.
Deciding it best to avoid any diligent footmen, he slipped through a narrow door along the corridor. While he’d been to the house a time or two in the past, he had never before strayed beyond the ballroom. But all homes in Mayfair had similar qualities, including his own. A narrow door was akin to a sign that read Servants, and this one—he caught himself from stumbling on the first step in the dark passageway—led upstairs.
One hand before him bracing for the door, he went up the stairs. When his fingers encountered cool wood, he paused and pressed his ear to the door. Silence.
The door opened soundlessly on well oil hinges revealing a corridor lit by gleaming brass sconces stationed at regular intervals along the walls. Should he go right or left?
His attention stopped on the partially open door across the corridor and down a bit, the room beyond it dark.
A bit of suspicion furrowed his brow. Would Martin have made it that easy?
No way to know unless Rys checked that room.
Plush rugs silenced his footsteps as he crossed the corridor, his blood pounding with an invigorating mixture of excitement and danger and the possibility of victory.
His senses on full alert, he hesitated just the barest bit as he crossed the threshold then stopped a couple of paces inside the room and gave his eyes a moment to adjust. A pool of golden light spilled from the corridor, but otherwise the room was dark. He could just make out the outline of a settee and a spindle-legged chair. Likely a sitting room, and it felt distinctly empty.
Obviously Martin had not made it that easy.
His lips quirked. He would have it no other way.
He left the sitting room and proceeded down the corridor. Should he check the doors on the left or right first? A systematic search or a more random one and hope luck would be on his side? Usually was. If not, he likely wouldn’t still be standing at the ripe old age of—he quickly checked his pocket watch—now five and twenty.
A large hand closed around his forearm and yanked sharply. The next thing he knew, he was pressed face-first against a wall, wrists held at the small of his back. A body even harder and stronger than his own covered him from behind.
A door snapped shut. He blinked against the sudden darkness and then his instincts screamed to the forefront.
He bucked back, tugged his arms. His gold cufflinks bit into his skin under the force of the man’s hold and then that harsh grip shifted down. Bare skin slid against his wrists. In the back of his mind, it registered that the other man wasn’t wearing gloves. He let out a grunt as the body behind him shoved his harder against the wall, pressing him flat so that he had to turn his head else risk breaking his nose. The grip on his wrists tightened to the point of pain before easing back to a secure hold.
Held tight, he shifted his weight, tested his bonds. He was certainly no slight slip of a man, but it definitely would involve a struggle to break free.
His heart slammed sharp and fast against his ribs, echoing in his ears. The man behind him shifted. A hard arch that could only belong to an obvious erection pressed into the crease of his arse. Lust shot to his groin. So thick and so heavy, he briefly squeezed his eyes closed against the force of it.
The scents of whisky, cheroot smoke and sandalwood drifted over his shoulder. The tendril of true fear, of uncertainty, vanished.
Warm breaths fanned his ear. “What have we here?”
"I honestly don't think sex scenes can be any hotter than this." - Rarely Dusty Books
"Although this was a very short story it packed a very sexy punch. Beyond Reckless is a tasty little erotic m/m treat." - Fiction Vixen Book Reviews
"I have already had the chance to appreciate the M/M regency romance by Ava March and so it's not news to me that they are indeed well planned and with just the right amount of details to allow the reader to fall into a past era without being overwhelmed." - Elisa Rolle
"...a well written and engaging Regency historical short. Those who like historicals and are looking for a quickie can't go wrong with picking up this short story." - Reviews by Jessewave
"Ava March has created a couple of characters that engaged me totally. I really enjoyed this story and hope that one day we'll see Rys and Martin again. - I Love Books
"The strength of the story for me was the charm of the men and their very attractive passion. ...a delightful, well-written, sexy romp." — Brief Encounters