“Water And Air” by Janelle Reston, presented by Nobilis Erotica. From the upcoming collection Like A Spell, vol 1.
Space is a place that is full of mystery. Traveling through outer space is a journey unlike any other, letting go of the usual sense of place and time and opening up to new possibilities. Just as one may never find the edge of the universe, one can never truly know why she falls in love with certain people; she can only embrace her feelings, or deny them. To map out the course of a human’s sexuality, as making a complete chart of the universe, is futile, for like space, the capacity for love and desire is infinite.
Space is also a place of escape, where one can let go of all her earthly worries and inhibitions and just drift away, allowing the forces of a more mysterious nature overcome. The space opera combines the improbability of science fiction and the impossibility of fantasy, and when the erotic is added to the mix, our desires can find a place even within the farthest reaches of nothingness. Outside of the earthly limitations of prejudice and discrimination, women can claim space for their own, living how they want and loving whomever they choose, exploring their sexuality in ways they never thought possible.
In these four stories, women explore the uncharted trails of human desire as they rocket through space and transcend time and place. They inspire fear and hope in the face of danger and uncertainty, and the thrills of satiating a hunger for intimacy in a strange new world. Women on the Edge of Space features stories by Elizabeth Black, Shanna Germain, Kaysee Renee Robichaud, and Laurel Waterford.
Excerpt from “Adrift”
by Kaysee Renee Robichaud
Love had come frantic and precious and hot. Afterwards, they held each other in the Captain’s bed, woman to woman. Brave explorers spooned, shivering with every passing second.
“It’s not fair,” Lydia Wealty said, turning to crush her Captain’s lean body in a tight embrace. “We’ve only just found each other. This should be thrilling. Why does it feel like a defeat?”
“Because,” Captain Adrianne Furlong replied, running fingers through Lydia’s white blonde curls, “we are defeated.”
The Captain’s quarters were almost romantic bathed in the emergency lighting’s soft glow. Few furnishings, but these were comfortable. The bed linens clung to their sweaty bodies, battling the growing chill.
“There has to be a way,” Lydia said.
“We’ve been over this,” Adrianne replied. “We have three lifeboats. More than enough space for the two of us. The Rapier’s fire lance will likely focus on the Eleemosynary, the larger target. So long as the lifeboats speed in different directions, our chances of escape are not insignificant.”
“Unless it possesses multiple weapon banks,” Lydia said. “Additional offensive systems we’re unaware of. The thing is one big enigma…”
“We know its fire lance cuts deep,” Adrianne said, “and the Eleemosynary cannot survive another encounter.”
“So we sit in our lifeboat coffins,” Lydia said, “and we hope for the best.” The odds were too great and stacked against them.
Fingers glided down Lydia’s back. The Captain was a rugged woman, late forties. She had lost her left breast to a mastectomy. Her torso, throat, and face were dotted with scar tissue reminders of an encounter with an exploding reactor shield. Lydia had memorized each white dot and crescent–these scars lay scattered along the canvas of her body like stars across the tapestry of space. Lydia met the Captain’s hard blue eyes, and something shifted in her gut–pain twinge.
We are defeated. Adrianne’s words sank in, draining Lydia’s will to live or fight.
* * * *
Four hours earlier…
Lydia and Adrianne were going over ore containment reports in the lab when the alien artifact arrived.
“I don’t know what it is, Captain.” Fearless Mark McCreed was the best helmsman Lydia had ever seen, one who had earned his nickname from countless skirmishes. “But it’s big, and it’s coming for us, and it’s very, very old.”
Then, it struck.
Before he vaporized with the rest of the crew in Command and Control, Fearless Mark McCreed had dubbed it Rapier–not because it looked like a fencing foil, but because its fire lance tore through each target with speed and precision.
The alien ship’s lance had fired five times before spiriting away, faster than any vessel in humanity’s extrasolar fleet. Sensors and analysis suggested the thing had departed to recharge, but it had not gone far. The next five attacks would be more than enough to finish the job.
“Who’s operating this Rapier?” Adrianne’s use of McCreed’s descriptor seemed somehow appropriate.
“There are no life signs aboard it,” Lydia said.
“No verifiable signals,” Lydia said. “The computer suspects complete automation. Programmed to continue doing exactly what it’s doing until it achieves some kind of victory condition.”
“So, it scours the universe looking for things to kill,” Adrianne said.
“In effect, yes. Something about us makes us The Enemy, and so it attacked.”
* * * *
“We need to compartmentalize,” Adrianne said. “Strip down the third boat’s survival rations to give each of us a fighting chance.”
Lydia nodded. Two boats. One survivor in each. “Also, we should divide the unbroken cool tubes between the boats. We’ve no idea about solar wind effects–”
“Yes, yes. Foodstuff, cool tubes, water rations. And have Elee‘s controller devise a good ration for food dispensing to maximize survival time. There’s no telling how long we’ll be flying apart.”
This struck Lydia hardest. They might not fly long at all, or they might fly longer than any supplies could conceivably permit. Too many unknown variables…”Captain–Adrianne?”
“There’s no time for secrets and things left unspoken, now.”
“Will you,” Lydia laughed though she felt no humor whatsoever. “Will you please call me by name?”
“You haven’t… haven’t said my name since… since your cabin.”
“I’m sorry.” The Captain’s eyes squeezed shut, while tension eased from her face. “I’m sorry, Lydia. I…” There were no explanations, only apology. “We need to do this. It’s our best chance.”
Lydia nodded, though her neck would rather break than acquiesce.
It made rational sense not to put all the eggs in one basket, but her heart knew little of sense. The heart knew only what it wanted, and the heart never wanted to be lonely, it never wanted to break. Especially not after it discovered how empty it had been. Especially not after it had filled that emptiness and sampled wholeness. Not now.
* * * *
Two hours earlier…
First, fear arrived like an unwanted guest, shoving its way through the door and into Lydia’s heart. From this came paralyzing terror and then rage. In time, this transformed into a keen desire to live.
These responses were expected, these were rational, these were reasonable.
Then, desire-to-live turned into something else. A longing for company, yearning to fulfill the wish she had locked away long ago.
When the Captain leaned back from the computer’s poor prognosis on the Rapier‘s recharging schedule, Lydia kissed her. It was a surprise to both of them.
Adrianne did not return the kiss. She remained stiff as a mannequin. Lydia eased away, discovering new panic. What would happen now?
She met the Captain’s steady gaze, saw her evaluation. Each second of silence grew denser than the last, adding to the weight between them until it grew too heavy, too much… Then, Adrianne’s hands fought Lydia’s and squeezed. They shivered, but not from the temperature. They trembled as the stones around Adrianne’s heart crumbled–a Captain could not afford to acknowledge heart or warmth while in flight. A Captain needed to concentrate upon the trip if that Captain was to hope for a continuing career. Adrianne had already enjoyed a long career, and in this moment she surrendered her dreams for a future.
Lydia closed the gap between them. Their lips met, soft. Their tongues met, uncertain. The Captain’s face flushed with embarrassment, and this brought heat to Lydia’s cheeks as well.
“You are beautiful,” Adrianne said.
“And you are strong,” Lydia said.
Their tongues turned together now, slipping in and out, a passionate probing. Hands released and drew caressing lines along arms, flanks. Kisses grew fevered, fighting the hopelessness and darkness threatening to snuff them. Touches made heat, a flame they could flutter around like dancing moths.
Blissful tears filled Lydia’s eyes as her mind sang, Why did I wait? Why did I wait? and after the kiss broke, her mouth voiced the mantra as the Captain’s kisses moved along her throat, and the Captain’s fingers unsnapped the jumpsuit and bared the tank top beneath. Nibbles through the clinging material sent shivers through Lydia.
Her hands tugged the Captain’s flight suit open.
Why did I wait?
To read the rest, download the ebook today!
This is the final month we’re offering our bargain-priced five-book shapeshifter ebook bundle. This week we’ll be posting a daily steamy excerpt to give you a taste of how much awesome stuff is inside.
You can buy it right here for $5.99:
or at your favorite e-book stores, such as Amazon, Smashwords, Kobo, or Barnes & Noble.
We start with Catt Kingsgrave’s lesbian love story set in the Orkney Islands, One Saved to the Sea:
Five lesbian fairytales that feature classic stories like “Cinderella” and “The Princess and the Pea” with a queer twist. What are the erotic possibilities of the enchanted princesses and forbidding queens that we learned about as children? Discover the love story between Gretel and the Witch and the intoxicating tale of Cinderella’s seductively severe stepmother It wasn’t a pea in her mattress that kept the Princess up all night, and the story didn’t end when the Prince found Snow White in the woods. Instead of competing for princes or beauty, the women in these stories are made more powerful by their desire for each other.
Praise for Like a Queen:
“These stories are all deliciously twisted versions of familiar stories, some featuring compelling characters and some with clever plots that wind their convoluted way to a happy ending.” and “These stories vary considerably in style and tone, and each casts a different spell. Tales of strong women subverting predicted outcomes never grow stale. If woman/woman sex appeals to you at all, this collection is sure to enchant.”
—Jean Roberta, Kissed by Venus
Keep reading for an excerpt:
Includes the stories:
Mirror, by Clarice Clique,
The Queen’s Jewel, by ADR Forte,
Gretel’s Dilemma, by Kaysee Renee Robichaud,
After the Hunt, by Michael M. Jones,
The Stepmother’s Girl, by Quatre Grey
From the Introduction by Rachel Kincaid:
Fairytales (and their cousins fables, myths, and folk tales) have been told and retold since before the written word. Their details change from generation to generation, and culture to culture. Names and settings shift and mothers become stepmothers as the needs of the storyteller change. This tradition hasn’t ended with modern times: contemporary writers such as Neil Gaiman and Francesca Lia Block have wrought beautiful and haunting versions of old stories, and there are already a dozen published books of erotic fairytales – most of them straight, but not all of them. So why put together another one? What can one more set of reworked Cinderellas possibly contribute?
Fairytales were originally conceived as, essentially, indoctrination and training for young children. In every telling they reveal and reinforce the values of the culture that created them: little girls who don’t listen to their mothers will be cruelly devoured, and young women who are too eager to use forbidden spinning wheels (or lose their virginities, however you want to read it) will be punished. We tell the same stories now for the same reason, but we change them to impart the messages that we want others to know, and that we ourselves need to hear. The ancient tale of Cinderella offered hope that good-heartedness and hard work could secure a happy life where superficial beauty and trickery could not. The modern “Cinderella story,” seen in forms from the exciting new lesbian novel Ash by Malinda Lo to Jennifer Lopez movies, tells us that we deserve to be happy even if we are poor or overworked or uneducated or of color or gay.
With this in mind, the significance of the stories in Like A Queen becomes clear. These stories are fun and sexy and clever, but they are also important. The original Grimm’s fairytales were set without exception in a world of compulsory heterosexuality; even worse than being ostracized or punished, queer people didn’t even exist. These stories are our way of writing ourselves back into our cultural memory; of making sure that the values that we’re imbibing include us and our desire in a positive light – a practice that’s necessary no matter how many times it’s already been done. As you’re about to find out, the results have been amazing. Fairytales often feature women at odds with each other, competing for male attention, but they have now been transformed into spaces where women are powerful, where they grow stronger through their love for one another, where instead of being punished for their sexuality they revel in it with fabulously beautiful princesses and captivatingly severe stepmothers. Magic wands are useful for more than casting spells, and the Princess’s bruises didn’t come from a pea in the mattress after all. It turns out that there are things in the Witch’s gingerbread house even sweeter than candy, and it’s definitely not the prince that Cinderella goes to see at the ball. So put on your glass slippers, and don’t forget to leave a trail of breadcrumbs behind as you venture on to find out what happened once upon a time.
$3.99 ebook download
ISBN 978-1-61390-139-7 (ebook)
ISBN 978-1-61390-140-3 (paperback)
The ebook edition is also available at: Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, Kobo, AllRomanceEbooks, and the iBookstore and Google Play store.
Welcome to Puxhill. It’s a quiet little city just a half-step off the beaten path. Everything seems normal, but the walls between worlds run thin here, and magic seeps into everyday life. Forgotten gods and faded myths live amongst the humans, and passions run deep. In Puxhill, the impossible becomes real.
In these eight erotic tales of magic, mystery, and lesbian lust, worlds collide in new and mesmerizing ways. The night manager of a seedy motel unlocks the secrets of an amnesiac girl’s past, while an angry young rocker fights for her life in a back alley. A rogue A.I. assumes human form to romance the new owner of a comic book store, shapeshifting lovers must break an ancient curse or run the risk of killing one another, and much more. Puxhill by Night collects a mixture of reprints and original stories by acclaimed author Michael M. Jones.
Includes the stories:
“The Muse’s Mask”
“Hannah and the Witch”
“Sun Chases Moon”
“Thwarting the Spirits”
“In the Service of Hell”
“The Runic Runaway”
“The Secret Life of Ramona Lee”
Hot excerpt, keep reading! Continue reading New book! Puxhill By Night: Lesbian Erotic Urban Fantasy
Happy 26th of December, loyal readers! Today is Boxing Day, which those of you in the Commonwealth countries will recognize as the day when tradespeople traditionally received gifts from their employers, and those of you in non-Commonwealth countries will recognize as a mysterious phrase that keeps occurring on your free gas station calendars for no apparent reason.
The small tokens given out on Boxing Day are known as ‘Christmas boxes’, which we here at Circlet thought was a smashing idea. So get yourself a 25% discount on a few of our favorite boxes — the lesbian-themed works One Saved To The Sea, Like A Trip Through The Mirror, and of course, the holiday classic Dyke The Halls — with the code NICELYWRAPPED.
Who can resist a smorgasbord of delicious holiday treats? Whether you are naughty or nice, these sexy lesbian stories with Christmas themes are much better than mistletoe.
Five lesbian erotic love stories of magic and mystery. What will you find on the other side of the mirror? Love? Passion? A world upside down? Step up to the mirror, look deep into your own eyes (or those of your secret, mirror-world lover) and prepare to have your worldview completely shifted. The grass really is greener on the other side—and the sex is hotter, too.
Also available in paperback!
In the Orkney Islands, seals shed their skins to dance on land. Lighthouse-keeper's daughter Mairead has watched the selkie girls secretly and longs to join them. But a selkie girl has been watching her, too. What wildness will the shapeshifter draw her into? One Saved to the Sea by Catt Kingsgrave will sweep you away to a past that never was, and into a love story just this side of impossible.
Also available in print!
Drawing on myth and history, Catt Kingsgrave writes a tale of the clash of the modern age with magic, of loss and searching, a tale that will sweep you away to a past that never was, and into a sapphic love story just this side of impossible.
About the Author:
Catt Kingsgrave has been writing fiction and verse since the early eighties, and despite everything, has not yet seen fit to desist. With works ranging from Urban and Mythic Fantasy through Horror, Erotica, and a decided taste for the Gothic and macabre, she takes delight in making all her works as difficult to classify as humanly possible. She lives with her partner, five cats, and two snakes in an upstate New York home that was built a century or so before the state in which she was born was made a part of the Union. When not writing, she has been known to indulge in random bouts of theater, songwriting, dance, painting, home repair, volunteer rape crisis counseling, and folk music. Her interests are zombie outbreak preparedness, criminal profiling, gardening, and full-contact applied mythology. She does not make jam.
Look under the cut for a hot excerpt!
For as long as humans have known to look for their own reflections, they have pondered the magical question: What would you find if you step past your own reflection and into the mirror world? In these five stories, the answer is passion and fire. Five women step up to the mirror and come out the other side in the midst of their hottest erotic fantasies, whether that involves reviving the dying embers of a love affair, seducing a beloved old friend… or perhaps just finding out for sure what some women have long suspected: that sex really is better with yourself for a partner! These heroines take risks, brave it all, and step into the unknown, between dimensions, between worlds, to lay claim to the love and heat that they both deserve and crave.
The Universe Where Katie Lived by Annabeth Leong
So Quite New a Thing by R. Ann Sawyer
Reflections by Kate Dominic
Into Tipera by Kathleen Tudor
Game Fae by Vivien Jackson
Look under the cut for a hot excerpt!