SERIES – The Companion Series
AUTHOR – Susan Squires
GENRE – Regency Paranormal Romance
PUBLICATION DATE – October 6, 2015
LENGTH – 341 pages
PUBLISHER – Independent
COVER ARTIST – Rebecca Poole, Dreams2Media
BUY & TBR LINKS
“Let me get your property, my lady,” the trader said. They turned to the back of the stall. Three men clustered round the straining barbarian, laughing as he tried to twist away. Blood dripped from his wrists where he had pulled against his shackles. He spat at them. It was his only means of defiance.
Graccus wiped his face and laughed. “Oh, he’ll be a joy to break.”
“I agree,” she said. The three yanked their gazes up, as did the barbarian. He flushed in shame. “Now unhand my new slave, sirs, so I may begin.”
“What? But I am buying him for my brothel!”
She waved the receipt scroll. “Too late.” Her She turned to the trader. “For the price I just paid, you can throw in a pair of shackles.” The trader nodded and clapped his hands. Slaves appeared with the required bindings. They unlocked the barbarian’s wrists from the poles and chained them behind his back before they released his feet. His ankles, too, were bloodied. Those green eyes stared at her, burning with intensity, as though he was still not sure what had just happened to him. Excitement churned inside her. This was the start of something—she didn’t know quite what. “Come quietly, slave,” she ordered, putting all the force of her personality behind her words, just shy of raising her Companion for compulsion. “You two—see that he does.” Two of Titus’s bodyguards nodded. Each took one of the slave’s arms and dragged him forward.
“You knew I wanted him,” Graccus was saying. The trader only shrugged. He couldn’t have gotten two thousand dinars for a slave bound for a brothel.
They pushed into the market throng. “There you are,” Titus called, hurrying over.
Livia saw him frown as he registered the barbarian. “Livia Quintus, what is this? You’ve never purchased this creature!”
“I have, Titus. He was a soldier, therefore skilled in martial arts. He even speaks Latin. He’ll be a perfect bodyguard.”
“Livia, return him at once. This is no slave for a woman.”
Livia turned to her new purchase, seeing him through Titus’s eyes. Bloody and sweating, he looked fierce, with those intense green eyes and all that hair. But he was the one she wanted. She knew that as certainly as she knew her own name. “Once we clean him up you won’t recognize him.”
“He needs more than a bath to make him suitable.”
“You were the one who suggested a bodyguard slave, and now that I’ve meekly done as you ask, you rail at me.”
Titus rolled his eyes. “Meek? I would welcome meek.” Livia gestured her entourage forward. Titus sighed and fell in step. “I just hope you haven’t bitten off more than you can chew.”