November Freebie: Ancient Rome Serial Centurion is #FREE at ARE this month only! #mmromance #serialfiction #

Good morning all! Just a reminder that Centurion, book one of my Ancient Rome serial m/m piece, is #FREE ONLY until the end of November, ONLY at All Romance eBooks. This is an ongoing serial, and the second part is already available. The next chapter is due out early in 2015.


"Can I be yours?"
Centurion Gaius Priscus has had his fill of war and death but knows no other life. When he meets the captive Salicar's gaze after battle, months of stringent self-denial catch up to him in a blazing rush of need.
Salicar is a healer, an educated man unused to battle but with his own experience of death. He should prefer death to captivity, but cannot find the courage to make it happen.

Will the hardened warrior, tired of death and destruction, deny his captive's plea?

Paulius, a fairly new member of his century, dragged a man into the green, and threw him at Gaius’s feet.

"Sir, I found him in the far house, cowering in fear." Jerking his head toward a small cottage that the flames had just begun to lick, the soldier kicked at the man on the ground, who flinched.

A frightened cry was cut off abruptly by a second brutal kick.

Gaius looked down at the man on the ground, curled at his feet. He was thin, and his skin seemed untouched by age. One more soul to send to the land of the shades from the look of him. He certainly didn't have the look of a man accustomed to laboring from dawn till dusk. "Stand," he commanded, gesturing roughly for the soldier to raise the man to his feet.

Paulius grabbed the man roughly by the arm, jerking him upright. The man shook off the soldier’s grip and stood straight, thin shoulders set in challenge. He tilted his head and glared at Gaius from deep blue eyes, wide with fear and sparkling with defiance.

Gaius’s breath caught in his throat and he covered his reaction with a cough. A tangle of fine silky black hair hung to the man’s shoulders, his face was delicate and pale, his features reminiscent of the Greek aristocracy. Plump rosy lips set in a scowl. Months on the march without easing his needs caught up with Gaius in that moment as he stared into that face, his gaze traveling over a body that was lean and supple. Narrowing his gaze, he searched the figure before him for some sign of value, some excuse to keep him alive. The Greek was clothed simply in woven fabrics unadorned by gold or jewels. His elegant feet were dusty and bare. The rest of his person was clean though a bit unkempt. He might have some education or training that could be useful.

Hardening his voice he demanded, "Do you have some skill other than muscle?" Because there was no way that he could pretend this fragile slip of a man was fit for working the field. He was comely enough, he supposed to make a pleasure slave, and possibly intelligent enough to make a clerk, if he had the fortitude to survive the trek to the market.

He couldn't discern the man’s mumbled response, but the voice that uttered it was soft, sensual and pleasing to the ear as the man’s features were to the eye. Pretending that the indecipherable response pleased him, Gaius nodded decisively. "Put him with the others'" he ordered. 

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Part Two: Slave

When a Roman century is sent to put down a rebellion three days march from Syracuse, the village is destroyed. The few survivors are destined for the slave market, Physician Salicar among them.

Salicar has caught the eye of the soldiers' leader, Centurion Gaius Prius. Gaius is captivated by the man's dark curls and bright eyes, the purity of his face. Lust flares between them, a powerful distraction from Salicar's plight.

When Gaius offers him a choice, life as his pleasure slave or to join his companions on the auction block, Salicar is torn. In just twenty-four hours, he's already been seduced into forgetting that the centurion is his enemy and lost himself in pleasures of the flesh.

Does he dare take his chances on the auction block? Can he live with the knowledge of his own cowardice and the guilt of betraying his people for the rest of his life if he does not?


The centurion shook Salicar roughly awake. "It's time."

He peeled his gritty and swollen eyes open and stared into the gloom, a little dazed by the abrupt awakening. "What? Is someone ill?" He fumbled for his bag in the darkness at the same time he realized that he wouldn't find it, because he'd been dragged from his own home the day before without any chance to gather his medicines and tools. Unaccustomed aches and pains gave him pause, and he winced. His feet and calves bore the brunt of it, but other parts, more intimate and sensitive were not so subtle reminders of his captivity.

A flicker of an indulgent smile—was it tinged with pride?—crossed the centurion's face. "It's time. We march toward Syracuse today. Dress yourself." His noble head jerked, and for the first time, Salicar noted a stoic-faced warrior standing in the tent's entrance. "Claudius will return you to the prisoners."

Shame filled Salicar, and his stomach twisted in revolt. He scrambled among the furs and blankets they'd slept entwined in to throw covering over himself, bewildered by the urge to modesty. It wasn't that he was unaccustomed to being seen in the nude, he'd bathed in the same stream as his neighbors, and frequented bathhouses during his travels. He was a doctor, by Asclepius! The human form was as familiar to him as…and he had no cause to be embarrassed by his own…he was a bit skinny, in truth, but his form wasn't…Emotion made his cheeks flame and Salicar ducked his head to hide. In his secret heart, he knew it wasn't his shape or face that made him ashamed to be seen this morning. It was the tender ache in his ass, the muscles that sent pleasurable twinges of pain and reminders of ecstasy to distract his thoughts. It was lust and regret and shame at still living when so many had died.

What made him feel so differently this time, so exposed and naked and…promiscuous? was the fact that it was clear despite his expressionless face that Claudius the warrior knew exactly what had transpired in this tent over the night. He knew that Gaius had sheathed his weapon repeatedly in Salicar's body, and if he'd been close enough to hear Sal's unrepentant cries, he knew that he'd enjoyed it immensely.

At Gaius's amused chuckle, his embarrassment turned to full-fledged and dangerous anger. "You are a cur, by Jupiter!" He cringed as the laughter stopped and Gaius's face turned to stone in front of him. The twisting in his belly coalesced into a tight, painful knot of fear. "My apologies. I'm sorry, so—"

"Silence." Gaius cut him off with a slashing hand. "We march in twenty minutes. Keep the pace."

Slave only 99 cents at All Romance

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Be Yourself

To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. ~e.e. cummings, 1955