There’s less than a month left before the Steampunk Bundle disappears. In the lead-up to that heartbreaking moment, we’ll be running some hot excerpts from each of the volumes in the bundle. Today we start with Elizabeth Schechter’s House of Sable Locks, winner of the Passionate Plume award, and finalist for the Magnolia Award.
(also available at Amazon, iBooks/iTunes, Smashwords, Kobo and Barnes & Noble)
Chapter Four: Gunner’s Daughter
William stopped outside a door that was almost identical to all the other doors on this floor, and all the doors that he’d gone through on his other nights in the House. This one was made unique solely by the brass plaque that read “Brigantine.” Nothing in the name gave any hint of what to expect inside the room.
This was the last room. He’d tried all the others, on both floors. Some were interesting, others bored him. Most of them had bored him, to be honest. He had promised Gerald, though, and now this was the last. After this, he could return to the fourth floor. He pushed open the door and went in.
He was met inside by the attendant automaton, just as in all the other rooms, and once again, he allowed himself to be prepared for what lay ahead. His mask and gag were removed and laid aside, and clothing was laid out for him to put on. William dressed slowly, intrigued by the fact that he was putting on the uniform of a Captain in the Royal Navy, complete with epaulets, an empty sword belt, and boots. He adjusted the coat and turned to let the attendant add the finishing touches. Leg irons were fitted around his ankles, and then his wrists were bound before him with rough rope that smelled heavily of tar. The final touch was a gag, a simple length of cloth forced into William’s mouth and tied there tightly, almost painfully. The attendant took his arm and steered him to the inner door, and without ceremony shoved him through.
He stumbled, nearly falling as his bad leg went weak under him, and was caught by a multitude of rough, grasping hands. He looked up, startled, to see himself surrounded by men who laughed and jeered as they pulled him further into the room, away from the door. The room was made up to look like the main deck of a sailing ship, but none of the men who were manhandling him were dressed in uniform. Rather, they were dressed in ragged, mismatched clothing that was dark with dirt and sweat. William realized immediately just what this room was meant to represent: a pirate attack. No doubt he was supposed to be the captain of a ship taken by pirates, and somewhere in this crowd was the pirate captain to whom he would be presented as a hostage. Even as he struggled and fought to pull away, even as the pirates pulled him steadily forward, their harsh hands tugging and tearing at his clothes and groping at his arse and his crotch, William was examining the room, the automatons that made up the crew, weighing the possibilities. And growing aroused.
Continue reading Steampunk Bundle Teasers #1: The Gunner’s Daughter