Described by The Romance Reader as “a budding force to be reckoned with” and as one of the “legendary erotica heavy-hitters” by Violet Blue, Kristina Wright is the author of the ground-breaking cross-genre relationship guide Bedded Bliss: A Couple’s Guide to Lust Ever After.
Kristina is an award-winning author and the editor of a over dozen Cleis Press anthologies, including xoxo, Fairy Tale Lust, Dream Lover, Lustfully Ever After, Duty and Desire and the Best Erotic Romance series. Her short fiction has appeared in over one hundred anthologies and her nonfiction has appeared in publications as perse as USA Today, Good Vibes Magazine, The Sun and Brain, Child.
She holds degrees in English and humanities from Charleston Southern University and Old Dominion University and has taught English and world mythology at the college level. She lives in Hampton Roads, Virginia with her husband, a lieutenant commander in the Navy, and their two young sons.
It’s time to enjoy a free excerpt from Kristina Wright’s anthology, XOXO Sweet and Sexy Romance. As an aside, there will soon be a guest review of this book published at CaraSutra.co.uk separately, from renowed fellow erotica author Victoria Blisse.
The story is entitled “Best Friends” and is written by Catherine Paulssen, who you can read more about in this separate spotlight post here.
Best Friends – Catherine Paulssen
The winds had already flared up when he got into his car, and the streets emptied as he drove out of town. The sky behind him was still bluish gray, and lit with a pale shine, but above the green slopes of Hope Springs, the leaden mass seemed to touch the tips of the trees.
A flash of golden light streaked over the lush landscape, followed by distant rumbling. Another bolt of lightning painted the sky pink, then raindrops started splattering on his windshield. Within seconds, the streets were covered with a shimmering film. He cursed, thinking of Tatum amid this violent storm, and that he would need to slow down if he wanted to make it to her safely.
Finally, the lights of his car fell on her slim figure in the drenching rain. She had her arms wrapped around her body, her shorts clung to her legs, and her copper-colored hair hung in long, wet streaks over her shoulders, but she made no move to get into the car. He leaned over and pushed open the door of the passenger’s side. “Come on!” he called out to her, and she came to the door.
“What about my bike?”
“No one will steal your bike in this weather! We’ll fetch it tomorrow.”
She frowned, then turned and sprinted back to the bike.
“Tatum! Get away from the trees!”
“Well, help me!” she yelled back.
For a moment, he watched her attempts at hiding the bike behind a tree trunk, her shoulders hunched. He rolled his eyes and got out of the car, wrapped his arms around her from behind and carried her away, ignoring her protests. He pushed her into the car and slammed the door shut. Soaked to his bones, he fell in the driver’s seat and threw her a glace, both annoyed and amused. She opened her mouth, but shut it again. A flash, like sizzling veins, streaked out over the sky.
“I needed to practice for the tour,” she said eventually, her lips puckered.
“Can’t do it if you die of pneumonia first.”
She grimaced. “Don’t be worse than my mom!”
“There’s a fresh shirt in my sports bag,” he grinned. “On the backseat.”
She crawled to the back and Jake’s eyes flickered to the rearview mirror. He’d found her attractive for a long time. But friends didn’t peek at each other while changing. He turned his eyes back on the road.
“Let’s watch the thunderstorm move on over the park,” she said, her words muffled as she pulled his shirt over her head.
He took a deep breath and turned the car to the top of a small hill. Tatum patted the bench. “Come.” She kept her eyes fixed on the spectacle outside while he crawled on the seat next to her. “Look at that… I wish there were more thunderstorms,” she mumbled, her breath fogging the window.
Jake got out of his drenched shirt as another flash lit the inside of the car. She snuggled against him and reached for his hands to wrap them around her. For some moments, he just held her, and the warmth of her rolled through him. He could smell the traces of rain on her skin and feel his breath mingling with the scent of her body.
“Why are you so bullheaded?” he asked, resting his chin on her shoulder.
“Because…” She shifted a little and played with his fingers. “Because I don’t want people to think I can’t handle things on my own.”
“People? It’s just you and me.”
She gnawed on her bottom lip for a moment and waited for the thunder to die down. When she turned her head, a curious glance lay in her eyes. “It’s just you and me.”
Her breath brushed his lips. He thought he saw a flush of pink on her cheeks. Very carefully, he tugged a strand of her hair out of her face. A drop of water ran down his hand.
Tatum sneezed. She gave him an apologetic smile. “We’re still in our wet duds.” She got out of her shorts, shoes and socks, and when they were almost naked, snuggled her head against his chest and wrapped herself around him. “Thank you,” she murmured.
“Thank you for picking me up.”
He pressed a kiss on her hair. “Always.” Her hair tickled his chest and he wondered if she could hear the pounding of his heart over the thick drops thrumming on the car’s roof. Blood rushed to his crotch and into his fingertips. “Tate…”
Instead of answering, she cuddled herself even closer into his embrace. She sighed faintly when his cock, bobbing against his briefs, nudged her thigh. She kissed his neck. A second kiss followed, and a third, and now her teeth nibbled at his earlobe. She made a trail of kisses up his throat, kissed his temple, the spot behind his ear. Her mouth grazed his cheek, but before she had reached his lips, Tatum stopped and searched his eyes. She cupped his face then pressed a soft kiss on his lips. He grabbed her butt and pulled her close, deepening the kiss.
– Catherine Paulssen
You can find Kristina Wright online on her website: kristinawright.com
Amazon.co.uk Author Page
– Cara Sutra