Please Welcome the incomparable Amy Valenti!
(see what I did there)
You can probably tell from the title that I wasn’t taking Hot, Rich and Dominant too seriously when I started it, back in the summer of 2012. Everyone was talking about Fifty Shades of Grey and the ebook market was filling up with copycat books, so I thought, ‘Why not?’
Strange how characters can grab you and demand that a story be told. These days, I’m kicking myself for not calling it something more serious, since the main character, Nell, is far from a gold-digger obsessed with her man’s looks!
The first short story in the series (now free, so you can get an intro to Nell’s connection with Marc) was only 8,000 words long, and that was where I’d originally planned to leave it. But something about the CEO’s son with a sexy lock of hair that kept falling into his eyes, and the grad intern who finds herself drawn into a BDSM scene practically out of nowhere, stayed with me until I had to write another part… and another…
Fast-forward to winter 2014, and their story is thirteen times as long as that first part! It’s finally finished, far deeper and more full of twists than I’d ever expected in the beginning. It started as a curious experiment, but I can’t really tell you where it ended without spoiling the book. You’ll have to find out for yourself. ;)
The maître d’ seemed to know Marc, and he showed us to a table in a shadowy, romantic nook lit by candles. He left us with the menus, and out of habit I looked for prices, but there were none listed—a sign that everything was extortionately priced if I’d ever seen one.
“You know, you don’t have to try to impress me with your wallet,” I said, without thinking.
He raised a brow. “What makes you think that’s what I’m doing?”
“I’m wearing designer dress and sitting at a table at Della’s.”
“I eat at Della’s a couple of times a month, and I wanted to see my new sub in a dress I’d take great pleasure in taking off later. Is that so bad?”
A waiter approached to take our wine order. I left the choice to Marc, and sat there hoping I wasn’t blushing too noticeably at the words ‘new sub’. How had I fallen into this crazy situation so quickly? Was he moving faster than I wanted to go?
I shifted slightly and remembered, for the umpteenth time, that I wasn’t wearing any underwear. That made me blush even more and by the time the waiter had left, I was pretty sure my cheeks were scarlet.
“Relax, Nell.” Marc was smiling, and under the table he brushed my leg with his, just for a second. “I’m not trying to knock all the sense out of your head by showering you with cash. I wanted to eat here tonight anyway, and I wanted you to feel comfortable, like you were dressed for the occasion.”
Part of me melted. It seemed so considerate, so sincere. “Thank you.”
Then I thought about it. Wait a minute… “So how comfortable am I supposed to feel sitting here without any—”
He kicked me gently under the table, his attention fixed somewhere over my head. I shut my mouth immediately as the waiter returned to let Marc taste the wine. He poured a glass for each of us at Marc’s approval.
When we were alone again, Marc leaned over the table, his expression intense. “I said I wanted you to feel comfortable—past tense. When I got there and remembered the hundred and one naughty little things I’m dying to do to you, I couldn’t resist upping the ante a little.” He paused for effect, then shrugged. “You could have said no.”
It was true. I’d protested the first time he’d mentioned it, but by the time we’d been ready to leave the apartment I’d been willing to do anything he’d suggested.
“I’m sure if I have a quiet word with the waiter, he can send someone out to procure some new underwear for you…”
Now it was my turn to kick him under the table. “Don’t you dare!” I hissed—then remembered I was supposed to be his submissive. “Sir,” I added belatedly.
He laughed aloud, as if he were genuinely enjoying my rebelliousness, and took my hand across the table. “You know, most Doms would tan your hide for insubordination.”
“I’m not good at this,” I mumbled, staring down at his fingers entwined with mine. “If you’re looking for Little Miss Subservient, I don’t think I’m your girl.”
It almost hurt to say the words. I wanted to see where this was heading, and to suggest that I wasn’t right for him wasn’t exactly the best way to convince Marc of that. But it was only fair that I was honest.
He squeezed my fingers. “Then it’s a good thing I like subs with a little spirit.”
You can grab a copy of Hot, Rich and Dominant – The Complete Collection now at Amazon, iTunes, All Romance eBooks, Barnes & Noble, Kobo or Smashwords – six stories for the price of three!
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