Read Mastered By Love Online

Authors: Tori Minard

Tags: #bdsm romance, #nobility, #bad boy romance, #slave romance, #warrior romance, #rescue romance, #bad girl romance, #aristocratic hero, #aristocratic romance

Mastered By Love

BOOK: Mastered By Love
9.02Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

Mastered By Love


Tori Minard


Writing As Tessa Tremaine

Copyright 2013

Smashwords Edition


Cover by Tori Minard from
images by © 
Vladimirs Poplavskis
, © 


This story is a work of
fiction. All names, characters, places and incidents are invented
by the author or have been used fictitiously and are not to be
construed as real. Any similarity to actual persons or events is
purely coincidental. All rights are reserved. No part of this book
may be reproduced in any form or by any means without the prior
written consent of the author.

This ebook is licensed for your
personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given
away to other people. If you would like to share this book with
another person, please purchase an additional copy for each
recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or
it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting
the hard work of this author.


Enchanted Lyre




her on all sides. Tariza sipped
her fancy mixed drink as she surveyed the masses of
colorfully-dressed people thronging the ballroom of the Bellerenic
embassy. Her sister, Lenora, was out there somewhere, dancing and
smiling the same way most of the women were.

Tariza wouldn’t dance. So
many of these people were male, all unchained – uncontrolled by a
female hand – that it made the fine hairs stand up all over her

Most of the Bellerenics, or
Demon Kin, were male because nearly all their females had been
destroyed due to biological warfare, so she couldn’t hold it
against them. Besides, they were the hosts and one must always be
polite to one’s hosts. They’d arranged this meeting of Concordia
and Saturnios at the Bellerenic embassy on Argelia in an attempt to
broker peace between the two warring kingdoms.

The human males, on the
other hand, had no excuse. No war, no disease had deprived them of
their women. They’d simply left most of them at home because they
were deemed unfit to participate.

Goddess, she hated
politics. She was the heir to the throne of Concordia, yet she’d
never felt less at ease than here, surrounded by other people’s
expectations of her nonexistent diplomatic skills and politesse.
Lenora was far better suited to this game than Tariza. She’d rather
be at home with her horses than here.

I’d rather be almost
anywhere than here.

She needed to think about something
else before her anger and uncertainty began to show on her face.
All of Concordia was relying on her and her mother, the queen, to
bring honor to the realm this evening. She must not disappoint
Merita again.

She turned her gaze on the design of
the ballroom. The Demon Kin had a flair for the beautiful, the
artistic. The enormous chamber featured exquisite hand-made glass
light fixtures and gorgeous carpets made in her own Concordia.
Everything shimmered with color and light, including the people
that crowded everywhere around her. The only thing spoiling the
loveliness was the hordes of un-escorted males wandering

Especially those damnable

She glanced around for her
honor guard, but in the press of human and Demon Kin bodies she
couldn’t see them anywhere and her heart began to thump so hard she
imagined she could hear it. Tariza took a deep breath. It wouldn’t
do to show how unnerved this male-heavy gathering made her. With an
effort of will, she released the grip she had on her own waist and
forced her free arm to hang by her side.

She was the heir to Concordia.
Princess Tariza and her mother embodied everything for which their
country stood. Perhaps she was unaccustomed to such a
sophisticated, Galactic crowd, but she would never admit that in

Relaxed. She was relaxed. She took
another sip of her drink. It was far too sweet.

The song the live band was playing
ended. Dancers began to move to and from the dance floor in the
center of the room. She knew little of couple dancing, and nothing
at all of the mass social dances performed here tonight. Concordian
dances were all about war and conquest and were never performed in
mixed-gender couples.

Almost all the women present had been
claimed as partners by the men, even though many of those men were
Saturnian. Why did they do it? What right-thinking woman would
allow one of those female-enslaving swine to touch her, let alone
guide her through a dance clearly designed to please a pack of
males with more power than was good for them?

The band launched into
another piece of music, one with a surging rhythm she found
unexpectedly pleasing. She tapped her toe as couples began to whirl
around the room in a complex series of steps Tariza couldn’t hope
to decipher. She had to admit the music was pretty, even if the
movements were uncivilized.

May I have this dance?” a
deep voice said next to her ear.

She spun to face the man,
the rapid movement sloshing liquid out of her glass and onto her
hand. In spite of her high heels, she had to look up – and up – to
meet his gaze. Large, deep-brown eyes fringed with absurdly long
black lashes stared down at her with private amusement. Stunning

She cleared her throat.

No? You crush me,
beautiful lady.”

Tariza shook her head. “I
doubt that.”

He spoke to her as if they
were equals. Maybe he didn’t know she was Concordian, that she came
from a country where males knew their proper place. Her gown,
though, was of turquoise silk with gold accents – the colors of
Concordia’s royal house. He had to know.

He’s only a man. He
probably doesn’t realize what he’s doing.

It’s only one dance,” he
said with a charming smile that brought out dimples in his

I’m otherwise occupied.
Run along now. I’m sure some other woman here will be glad to
oblige you.”

The overgrown lout took her
by the elbow. With his other hand, he relieved her of her glass,
setting it on the moss-covered soil of a nearby potted palm. “But,
Princess Tariza, I want you. Surely you don’t mean to insult the
house of Saturnios by denying me in front of all these good

His charming smile had
something predatory in it. Too late, she noticed the quiet red
accents on the fellow’s black jacket. How could she have missed the
Saturnian colors on him? Red and black.

They were quite understated, though;
maybe even designed to escape a cursory glance. A little scarlet on
the buttons and a subtle, narrow red stripe in the charcoal neck
cloth he wore; that was all.

People were beginning to
notice the two of them. Tariza’s cheeks heated. “I don’t know how
to dance this way.”

It’s quite all right.” His
smile deepened, dark eyes sparkling. “I’ll take the

No, I don’t –”

He already had her by the
elbow and was leading her – chivying her, really – to the dance
floor. Normally, she wouldn’t hesitate to put an insolent male in
his place, but this was a diplomatic event. If she continued to
protest, she’d make a scene and embarrass herself and her people in
front of the whole Galactic assembly. Argelia, with its
anti-technology policies, was already considered somewhat backward,
and isolationist Concordia the most backward of all its

People were idiots, but that was
irrelevant. She was honor-bound to make a good, sophisticated show

She allowed him to draw her to the
edge of the dance floor. He put his arm around her waist, pulling
her close to his body. Beneath his formal clothes, he was hard with
muscle. His scent, of freshly washed male without a hint of
cologne, hit her at the same time as their bodies met.

A bolt of pure lust stabbed through
her belly, suffusing her with tingling heat. She stared up at him,
tense with the effort to conceal that sudden desire. It had never
struck her this way, all at once and from nothing more than a
fully-clothed touch.

He took one of her hands
and placed it on his shoulder. “This is the waltz.” He lifted her
other hand in his. “An ancient Earth dance.”

The Saturnian spun her away
into the mass of dancers. Tariza jerked her gaze from his face to
his feet. What in the Goddess’s name was he doing with them? She
couldn’t understand his sequence of movements.

Her toe caught in the hem of her gown
and she stumbled, lurching against his arm. Her face

Relax,” he said, righting
her effortlessly as they continued to dance. “I’m in charge. All
you have to do is let go and follow my lead.”

I told you I don’t know
how to dance this way.” And after this humiliation, she never

I’m surprised it wasn’t
included in your education, Your Highness.” The way he spoke her
title sounded more mocking than respectful.

Tariza frowned at him. “You
have the advantage of me. You know who I am, but I don’t know

Ah, yes. I’m Dario
Saturnios, at your service.” He gave her a mocking little bow of
his head.

Now her brows rose. “Prince
Dario Saturnios?”

The very same.”

You weren’t with the
Saturnian party that greeted us.”

No. I was unfortunately
detained in the field.” His eyes sparkled again. “Were you

She made a dismissive
sound. “Why would I be?”

But she had been
disappointed. She’d looked forward to seeing the two barbarian
princes, nephews of the king, in person. Close enough to
touch...except of course she would disdain to put her hands on such

I know I was.” He leaned
his head close as they spun through another turn. “I wanted to know
if the Concordian princess was as beautiful in person as she is in

He flirted with her the way
two female lovers did in Concordia. She’d never encountered that
behavior in a male. Men in her country were humble and modest, not
bold-eyed pirates. They never undressed her with their eyes, the
way Dario Saturnios was doing.

You’re talking a lot of
bull – er, nonsense,” she said, fixing her gaze on his jacket

Not at all. You’re twice
as lovely in reality. I tell you, if this wasn’t such a formal
event, I’d...” His voice trailed off suggestively.

You’d what? Can you really
be so ignorant that you don’t know how we Concordians deal with our
men? Cease your chatter before you make an even greater fool of

He smiled at her, looking
more predatory than ever. “But I am not Concordian. Do you know how
we Saturnians deal with our women?”

How could I not? Everyone
in the galaxy knows what savages you are.” She tried to break off
the dance.

Ah, ah.” His arm tightened
around her like a vise. “We’ll finish out the dance,

You did this just to
humiliate me, didn’t you?” she snapped, glaring at him.

Not at all. I truly wished
to meet you. Especially since we’ll be seated next to each other at


The music ended abruptly
and Prince Dario released her waist, settling her hand in the crook
of his arm in the same graceful move. “We’re dinner partners.
Didn’t you know?”

She hadn’t even thought to
ask who her dinner partner would be. In Concordia, there was no
formal seating at banquets and the truth was she’d never attended a
formal event outside her own kingdom. Concordia kept to itself for
the most part, avoiding interaction with those who would destroy
their unique way of life.

Dario gestured toward the
adjoining dining room. “Shall we?”

BOOK: Mastered By Love
9.02Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

Other books

Some Like It Lethal by Nancy Martin
Halo: Primordium by Bear, Greg
Unfaithful by Elisa S. Amore
Bacorium Legacy by Nicholas Alexander
One Thousand Brides by Solange Ayre
Christmas Miracle by Shara Azod
Jupiter Project by Gregory Benford
Beauty and the Wolf by Lois Faye Dyer