Author: Alexis Duran
Series: Order of the Black Knights #2
This is a multi-author series and all books can be read as standalones.
Release Date: November 2nd 2016
Genre: Contemporary MM Romance
From Louisiana swamp rat to revivalist huckster to skilled con artist, Matthias Krall clawed his way out of poverty using his natural gifts of grift and manipulation to become the leader of an exclusive retreat center. Exploiting the guise of spiritual guru, Matthias seduces the rich and powerful into turning over their lives and fortunes to his control. But wealth and a small cadre of loyal followers can’t protect Matthias from the betrayal he knows is imminent. Everyone wants what Matthias has, except for one man who wants to destroy it. Dylan Connelly is a reporter who’s determined to prove the charismatic recluse is not only a fraud but a murderer.
Irresistibly drawn to Dylan despite the warnings in his gut, Matthias lures Dylan to his island retreat, determined to destroy his enemy once and for all.
Find Order of the Black Knights series on Goodreads
In this excerpt, Dylan has been invited to Matthias’s inner sanctum.
Matthias’s realm. The doors were open and led into a huge living room. The wall of windows curved outward and continued until it intersected with a stone wall. A huge fireplace had kindling and logs ready to go, but the fire was unlit. A pale sage carpet covered the floor, matched by dark green couches and deep chairs. There was some eye-catching art on the walls, large pieces in blacks, reds, and white, but Dylan didn’t have time to inspect them because at that moment Matthias walked in from another room, fiddling with his watch clasp. Dylan got the impression Matthias had just showered and changed, and the idea of Matthias nude and wet put a quick halt to any other thought.
“Come in. Make yourself comfortable,” Matthias said as casually as if Dylan were a frequent visitor. Matthias wore jeans that fit him perfectly and looked comfortably worn but were probably an outrageously expensive designer brand made to look that way from the get-go. His white cotton shirt accentuated his dark complexion and set off his perfect, white teeth when he smiled, which wasn’t often.
Dylan knew he was grungy in comparison, even though he’d made a supreme effort to look good without looking like he’d tried to look good. His jeans didn’t fit him perfectly, were a little loose, and were naturally worn. He’d picked out a shirt in a dark green that was embarrassingly close to the color of Matthias’s furniture. Maybe he could hide among the couches if necessary.
“Thanks for showing Dylan the way, Julian. The trails can be confusing to newcomers.”
Though this was obviously a dismissal, Julian lingered.
“The senator-elect has extended her stay another week. She says this is her last shot at sanity before returning to D.C.”
“Good to know,” Matthias said. He’d been too busy adjusting his watch and his perfectly turned shirtsleeves to look at either of them, but now he raised his eyes, a blue fire flashing out from beneath thick lashes. He might as well have cracked a whip, the way Julian stiffened.
Dylan stiffened as well, but in a different way. The power behind the simplest of Matthias’s looks aroused him instantly. Even Matthias’s anger was intoxicating, maybe especially. Maybe that’s why Dylan had such a hard time pretending to be docile.
Julian turned and faced Dylan. “Call if you need help finding your way back,” he said without the slightest hint of sarcasm.
He left, and Dylan stared at the art without seeing it, wishing he could think of something intelligent to say about it. That was where they had met, after all. In an art history class.
“Drink?” Matthias asked. He’d made his way to a black marble bar in the corner. He pulled out a square bottle that looked like vodka and unscrewed the cap.
Dylan walked over. “What are you having?”
“Vodka with a splash of tonic.”
Matthias grinned and put two glasses on the counter. “Relax, Dylan. I’m not going to pounce on you and tear your clothes off.”
“I kind of wish you would,” Dylan said, and then wished he had better impulse control.
“Oh, really?” Matthias looked at him as if he were seriously asking, vodka bottle poised just shy of pouring.
“I’m a little tense,” Dylan said.
“That’s what alcohol is for.” Matthias finished the drinks. His idea of a splash was more a waving of the tonic bottle over the vodka in the glasses. He squeezed a droplet of lime into each and handed Dylan his drink.
“Here’s to finishing what we started,” he said, lifting his glass.
About the Author
Alexis Duran was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest. At the University of Oregon, her fascination with people and relationships led her to major in Sociology, but her main love has always been creative writing. She’s worked in museums, finance, film production and for several performing arts organizations. Her favorite job so far has been inventorying the collection of a haunted Victorian Mansion. She is the author of the Masters and Mages and Edge of Night m/m fantasy series as well as several stand-alone romances. Her fiction has won several awards including the Rupert Hughes Award from the Maui Writers Conference and First Runner Up from Love Romances Cafe. She lives with one dog and four and a half cats. She is always working on the next novel and has several new ideas brewing at all times.
November 7th: MM Good Book Reviews
November 8th: Drops of Ink
November 10th: Prism Book Alliance
November 14th: Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents
November 15th: Loving Without Limits
November 16th: Happily Ever Chapter
November 17th: Alpha Book Club