Sometimes happily ever after isn’t all it’s cracked up to be…
Theo Fitzcharles thought he’d put the worst behind him when he became King of Thalania and named his two lovers, Meg Sanders and Galen Mikos, as his Consorts. Unfortunately, the realities of running a country have worn on all of them, individually and as a triad. Theo has every intention of making things right, but first he has to deal with an old enemy who’s closer than anyone could have dreamed.
Meg Sanders never wanted to be a princess. Now that she’s one of two Consorts to the King of Thalania, she knows why—it’s work. Every time she turns around, she’s misstepping and struggling not to screw up the careful political maneuvering required for her new position. But her struggles with the new position are the least of her worries she’s attacked in the palace.
Theo, Galen, and Meg must race to identify her attacker and neutralize them before they can make another attempt to hurt her. There’s plenty of people who want Meg out of the palace—and at least one isn’t picky about whether she’s breathing or not when she goes.
Meg knew what she should do. She should tell Theo that the best way to take care of her and Galen was to talk to them. But with the candlelight playing across Theo’s skin and his skillful hands working at the knots in her shoulders, she couldn’t work up the energy to fight with him. “I’m not happy with you.”
“I know.” He dug into a particularly tight knot, working it with his thumb. “What do you need from me tonight, princess?”
She let her eyes close, let him keep working his magic on her body. Six months into their relationship, and Meg knew that Theo would give her anything she asked for. If she wanted him and Galen to dress up like Vikings and roleplay one of her favorite scenes in a romance novel she was reading, he’d do it without question. He had done it without question last month. Theo might be fucking up on communication and overworked to the point where she barely saw him, but she never doubted for a second that he loved her and wanted her happy.
She slipped beneath the surface of the water. Free of his touch, clarity didn’t suddenly strike her like lightning. If there was an answer, she didn’t have it. Meg slowly stood and let herself drink in the way Theo watched her. As if she was some kind of Aphrodite rising out of the ocean instead of standing here in their tub. “I just want you tonight, Theo. None of the bullshit. Just you.”
He nodded and grabbed one of the ridiculously large towels they kept stocked in here. “Let me take care of you tonight,” he repeated.
Easy enough to read in between the lines of what he wanted. A reprieve in a long line of reprieves. Theo was trying to hold off the inevitable conversation all three of them had to have until he could iron out the mess Thalania had become in his absence. Or maybe the backbiting politics and squabbling seven Families had always been like this. Either way, Theo wanted time to get it handled.
She just wished he’d lean on her and Galen a little bit in the meantime.
Meg stepped out of the tub and let him wrap her in the towel. “Like I’m going to say no.”
Theo dried her gently, thoroughly, making quick work of it. He had a face built for candlelight, all sharp angles and a beauty that was damn near painful to witness. The passing time should have inoculated her to the sight of him, but then he would turn just so or look at her with those big blue eyes, and she’d forget to breathe.
She blinked. “What?”
“You could say no.”
Meg laughed. She couldn’t help it. “Theo, have you looked in the mirror lately?”
He glanced over, and she followed his gaze to the large mirror situated on the other side of the bath. They painted quite the picture, him large and towering over her, his shock of near-black hair several shades darker than hers, his big hands holding the towel against her skin. For once, he wasn’t wearing his usual clothing of suits that cost enough to give Meg hives. In the workout shorts, he looked… Not normal. Theo would never be anything as mundane as normal.
He looked touchable.
So that was exactly what she did. Meg ran her hands up his stomach to his chest and stepped to him. “I know I could say no. I’ve said no to you more times than I can count since we’ve met.” She cupped his strong jaw with her palm. “Theo, are you okay?”
“No.” He pulled her slowly, inexorably closer, until her breasts pressed against his bare chest. “Just… Let me take care of you tonight, princess.”
The rare vulnerability he let her see in that moment seduced her as thoroughly as his body ever had. She nodded. “Yes.”
Theo swept her off her feet and carried her out of the bathroom. Normally, she’d give him shit for such a caveman move, but Meg didn’t want to poke at him tonight. She was tired and heartsore, and both her men were obviously feeling the same. They couldn’t fix the mess waiting for them outside those doors, but they could strengthen their foundations tonight.
She just hoped it would be enough.
Galen waited for them on the bed, clothed in only his skin. Her heart skipped a beat. As much as Theo’s beauty seduced her, Galen’s raw sex appeal knocked her right in the stomach. His dusky skin was crisscrossed with lighter scars, a testament to the abuse his father had leveled at him as a child. His dark hair had grown longer, losing the military-like cut. She liked it. There was a lot to like about Galen.
He watched Theo carry her toward him with a predatory look that sent a bolt of desire through her. Only good things came from Galen getting that expression on his face.
Theo set her on the bed just out of reach and pressed a hand to her shoulder. “Don’t move.” He was only gone a moment, disappearing back into the bathroom and reappearing with a hairbrush. He took up a position against the headboard and urged her to sit between his legs with her back to him.
Theo began carefully combing her wet hair.
Meg closed her eyes and let the gentle tug of the brush soothe her. The fluffy towel and Theo’s proximity kept her cozy, but Galen’s attention pricked along her skin, a promise of things to come. On and on it went. Theo was never one to do things halfway, but he seemed to enjoy the slow slide of the brush through her drying hair as much as she did.
Finally, he set the brush aside and eased her back against his chest. Her hair was almost dry at this point, but Theo moved its soft weight off her neck and pressed a kiss to her throat. He pulled the towel away from her body and tossed it off the bed, leaving them skin to skin. It felt good to be wrapped up in him like this. Even better than his combing her hair.
The mattress dipped and Meg opened her eyes to find Galen had moved to a point just past their feet for a better view. He arched a dark eyebrow at her, but something soft and intimate marred the arrogance of the expression. He needed this reaffirming as much as she did.
For once, no one colored the air around them with filthy words and dirty talk. Theo stroked his hands over her body, the rough slide of his palms across her skin sending her nerves sparking in response. She writhed a little, but he wouldn’t be guided. He paid equal attention to her arms, her shoulders, her stomach and her hips, avoiding her breasts and pussy.
The damn tease.
Finally, a small eternity later, he cupped her breasts, giving them the same slow exploration delivered to the rest of her body. Meg couldn’t stop herself from arching up to press herself more firmly into his hands.
“Impatient,” he murmured against her skin.
“Can you blame her?” Galen’s rough tone made Meg shiver. He reached down and palmed his own cock. “She’s shaking with need.”
Meg grabbed Theo’s hand. She spread her legs wide, hooking them on either side of Theo’s, making sure to give Galen a good show. “Take care of me, baby.” She pressed his hand to her pussy. “You promised.”
“I did, didn’t I?” Theo cupped her there roughly, possessively, the touch lighting a spark beneath Meg’s skin. He pushed a single finger into her, still teasing, not offering nearly enough of what she craved. His voice curled around her, just as intimate as their current position. “I’m feeling generous tonight, princess, so I’ll let you choose how we give it to you.
New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Katee Robert learned to tell her stories at her grandpa’s knee. Her 2015 title, The Marriage Contract, was a RITA finalist, and RT Book Reviews named it ‘a compulsively readable book with just the right amount of suspense and tension.” When not writing sexy contemporary and romantic suspense, she spends her time playing imaginary games with her children, driving her husband batty with what-if questions, and planning for the inevitable zombie apocalypse.