Sunday, October 4, 2015

Sunday's Safe Word Shelf: Sub-Mission by Sage Marlowe

Sub-Mission #1
How far would you go to save the one you love?

Pierce Hollister is a down-to-earth businessman. Most of the time. His romantic side has him secretly dreaming of Mr Right, a family and a happy ever after.

Noah Conway is a single father who doesn’t believe in happy families any more. When his daughter’s life is at stake, he would sell his soul to save her but as a sadistic Dom takes an interest in him, he sells his body instead.

A shared session at a BDSM club leaves Pierce intrigued and soon he finds himself willing to do anything in his power to heal the wounds that life has left on Noah’s soul. When he realises that the very thing Noah dreads the most might just be what he needs, Pierce sets out on a mission—but maybe it’s just not in his power to save Noah.

Will Noah be able to battle the demons that haunt him and find the happy ever after Pierce has dreamed up for them?

Reader advisory: This edition is a revised re-release. Contains a scene of dubious consent and references to violence in one MC’s past

Re-Submission #2
Rubbing a toppy sub, a submissive Top and a Dom with attitude together is guaranteed to send sparks flying — but what will they ignite?

Meet Tyler Kane. Ballsy and headstrong, he's far from being the submissive type. Francis Hollister, Dom and proud owner of a BDSM club, couldn't agree more - and yet, as Tyler carelessly suggests a bet, Francis sees an opportunity arise and decides to take him up on it.

Soon Tyler finds himself in Francis' club and about to be trained as a sub. When Shae, the gorgeous Top Francis has assigned to teach him, doesn't appear to be quite as dominant as his role would lead to believe and Francis turns out to be a rather versatile Dom, Tyler sees a perfect match just waiting to be made happen. Too bad though that he's the only one who sees it. Or maybe he isn’t?

Curious to find out what happens when you rub a submissive Top, a toppy sub and a Dom with attitude together and what exactly the sparks from that explosive combination ignite, Tyler enlists the help of Pierce, Francis' brother, and his partner Noah, and sets out on a mission.

While Tyler's plan seems to work out astonishingly well, it seems that there's more than one man in the club who is pursuing a hidden agenda...

Reader Adisory: This edition is a revised re-release

Sub-Culture #3
When life gets on top, delving into a sub-culture may be just what it takes to keep a sinking relationship afloat

Five years after the bumpy start to their relationship, Noah and Pierce have settled well into their lives as a happy couple. The arrival of a new child should have made their matrimonial bliss complete, but the strain of raising a baby and a teenager, combined with a lot of pressure in their jobs, is beginning to take its toll.

In the midst of what already is a potentially explosive situation, Noah’s younger brother Jonah comes to stay with them, forcing Noah to face the issues he still has regarding his homophobic parents and adding to the emotional pressure he is under.

When Noah starts behaving oddly and Pierce just can’t seem to put his jealousy to rest, the cracks in their relationship become too severe to ignore any longer. They struggle to keep their sinking love afloat but, as Noah craves the comfort a certain sub-culture can offer, Pierce finds himself wondering just how far he is willing to step out of his own comfort zone to save their love.

Reader advisory: This edition is a re-edited re-release. Sub-Culture is the sequel to Sub-Mission and a part of Noah and Pierce’s story is also featured in Re-Submission. Whilst each book stands on its own, to enjoy the story in full it is recommended to read the books in the order of release (Sub-Mission, Re-Submission, Sub-Culture).

Sub-Mission #1
Chapter 1
“He’s a pretty thing, isn’t he?” Robert observed as he followed Pierce’s gaze.

Not taking his eyes off the handsome guy at the bar, Pierce shrugged. “Yeah, he’s all right.”

“More like fucking hot, don’t you think?” Robert enthused.

For once, Pierce agreed with him whole-heartedly. He let his gaze wander up those long, slender legs, the tight, leather-clad bottom and further up the hard line of the man’s body to where his dark hair curled enticingly over the collar of his leather jacket. Although the stranger’s back was currently turned towards him, Pierce had got a long enough glimpse of his face to know that it matched the attractive body. He was wondering if he should try to make a pass when the unwelcome feeling of being watched made him focus on Robert once more. Apparently the man was still waiting for an answer. “I just said he’s all right, didn’t I?”

“You fancy him.” It wasn’t a question.

“Well, I guess I wouldn’t deny him, although the good-looking ones aren’t necessarily good lays. Besides, he might be covered in spots or have a hairy back.” Pierce aimed to sound far more indifferent than he felt. He took another sip of his drink, knowing that he should slow down, but he was enjoying the sizzling, fizzy feeling it created in the pit of his stomach far too much.

“I can assure you, what’s underneath his clothes is just as pretty as his face. And incidentally, he is a great lay.”

“Is he?”


Pierce was about to dismiss it and just change the topic, but something in Robert’s face as he eyed the beautiful stranger made him change his mind. He sighed and took the bait. “How do you know?”

Robert’s expression became smug. “I’ve had him. Repeatedly. He’s all mine.”

Pierce quickly raised his glass to hide the smirk on his face. Robert could be fun to talk to, and some of the guys at the club liked him as a Dom, but he also had a reputation for being a shameless show-off who’d make up stories to draw attention to himself.

“Yours?” Pierce didn’t bother to keep the doubt out of his voice this time. It was hard to believe that someone who looked like the guy at the bar was with a man like Robert. Everything about the man’s body language, from the straight back and proudly raised head to the relaxed way he was talking to the bartender, displayed self-assurance and strength—he was a confident, independent alpha male. Master Robert invariably wanted his men tame and submissive.

“Yes.” Robert’s tone and the expression on his face sent a shiver down Pierce’s spine. “You don’t believe me, do you?”

Pierce drew a hesitant breath. “I must admit that he doesn’t look like your usual type.”

“Doesn’t he? What does he look like, then?” A nasty tone had crept into the Dom’s voice but it wasn’t angry, it was…challenging. Competitive. Pierce shrugged and thanked the waiter who had brought their refills. He didn’t want to argue, but apparently Robert was determined to annoy him. And he was beginning to succeed.

“He just doesn’t look like the submissive type to me,” Pierce replied and picked up his glass.

“Looks can be deceptive.”

“Yeah, well, you did ask. I’d say the guy’s a Top. I don’t think he’d so much as bottom for anyone, let alone submit. A pity, really.” Pierce took no small pride in the fact that he had an uncanny ability to not only instantly recognise whether a man was gay or not but to also figure out what they were like in bed within minutes. Before even trying to get them there. So far, he hadn’t been wrong once. He drained half of his drink in one large gulp, preparing to end the conversation, when Robert gave him a malicious grin.

“Wanna do him?”

Pierce made an effort not to choke. “Excuse me?”

“I’ll let you fuck him if you want.” Robert’s grin widened as he leaned in. “And trust me, he is going to bottom.”

Pierce’s breath hitched. Sparks of electricity jolted through his insides and exploded in his groin. It had been ages since the mere thought of sex with someone had got him this turned on this quick. He’d had his fair share of experience and was used to being in control, and yet here he was, his trousers suddenly far too tight for comfort and he felt like a teenager hoping to get laid for the very first time. He stole a glance at the bar. Even though he knew he shouldn’t be, he was interested. Very interested. The idea of exploring the slender, handsome body that lay underneath all that leather was enticing. He hesitated for another moment, then he looked at Robert. “Sure he’s up for that? Shouldn’t you maybe ask him if he’s okay with it before you offer him to other people?”

Grinning triumphantly, Robert shook his head. “He’s okay with whatever I tell him. I’ll take that as a yes, then, shall I?”

Pierce took a deep breath, swallowed and grappled with his self-control some more, but it seemed he was losing the fight. His dick, painfully hard in the confinement of his own leather trousers, was definitely up for it. “Why don’t you introduce us first, then we’ll take it from there.”

“My pleasure,” Robert replied with a sharkish smirk and went to the bar.

Pierce’s heart beat faster as Robert walked up to the attractive stranger and slipped a hand around his narrow waist. The guy stiffened visibly but didn’t move, apart from lowering his head so Robert could make himself heard over the background noise of the club. Whatever Robert told him made his head snap up and he took a step back. Following him easily, Robert invaded his space and crowded him against the solid wood of the bar. Pierce lost sight of the two men for a moment because a small group of people passed right in front of him. When they were gone, Robert was walking in his direction. The stranger followed him like a docile puppy.

He’s got him on a fucking leash, Pierce realised with a jolt. The sight of a black, studded leather collar against the man’s pale skin made his groin ache even more.

“Here we are, boy.” Robert stopped in front of Pierce. “Pierce, this is Noah. My new sub,” he announced and emphasised his point by giving the leash a sharp, unnecessary tug.

Noah flinched almost imperceptibly but stood in perfect display posture. Back straight and shoulders squared, he held his head high and with pride. Only his eyes were downcast and trained firmly on the floor. All in all, he looked beautiful and as tame as over six feet of very well-proportioned man could look.

Pierce wondered how long he’d been in training. Although he himself had chosen to remain an outsider to the lifestyle, he knew enough about it to recognise and appreciate a well-trained sub. Noah certainly appeared well trained but then again, looks could be deceptive.

“Hello, Noah,” Pierce greeted softly. “Nice to meet you.”

Re-Submission #2
“Oh, come on, you’ve got to be joking!” Tyler groaned when the smoke-grey Jaguar in front of him slowed and braked yet again instead of just passing the orange light. “Why does this always happen when I’m in a fucking hurry?” He drummed his fingers on the steering wheel and counted to ten. Then twenty. Thirty. The light changed but the Jaguar remained glued to the asphalt and cowered on the road like a beautiful but lazy cat.

“Hel-lo!” Tyler shouted, but nothing happened. Except that the light changed back to red after a short period. “Fuck!”

Tyler thumped the steering wheel and watched the other car. Its driver must have been busy checking stock exchange rates instead of paying attention to the traffic. But then again, with a car like this, the driver was in all probability not the owner but rather some poor soul who had to ferry an overpaid, underworked business executive around. The light went green again and still the Jaguar remained in place.

At last, the driver’s door opened and a slim figure hopped out.

“Damn, how sick can you get?” Tyler muttered. A chauffeur in uniform was one thing, but this one was wearing a uniform made of black leather.

The man went around the car, opened the bonnet and disappeared behind it. Seconds later, he turned up again and walked to the rear of the car where he seemed to be talking to whoever sat in the backseat.

“Oh, for fuck’s sake!” Tyler unclipped his belt, then got out of the car and slammed the door shut, just to vent some of his frustration. Staring at the Jaguar, he shouted, “I don’t care what your problem is, but could you just remove that pile of scrap so I can get past? I’ve somewhere to be and I haven’t got all day to get there.”

Startled, the driver glanced in Tyler’s direction but not quite at him. He was younger than Tyler had assumed him to be at first sight. He must have been in his early twenties, but skinny and fine-boned and not Tyler’s type. Plus, his nervy fidgetiness was annoying, as was the fact that he didn’t give an answer. Ignoring Tyler, he shifted his attention back to his passenger. Just as Tyler was about to turn around and leave the irritating thing alone, the back door of the car was opened and the mysterious second man emerged.

Tyler froze mid-motion. The driver had been of little interest to him, but the passenger had his entire attention in an instant. Tall and with the kind of posture that suggested a greater physical power than his refined, somewhat snobbish exterior led one to believe, he was right up Tyler’s alley. He was also probably older than him by a few years and quite handsome in a distinguished way. The clothes he wore must have cost more than Tyler earned in a month.

Sugar daddy.

“I apologise for the inconvenience,” the man called out to him. “I’m afraid the car refuses to start and my driver has no idea why that is.” His voice was kind and pleasant but instead of sounding apologetic, there was a decisive tone to it, as if its owner was used to giving orders and being obeyed without question. Tyler liked it. He went to the Jaguar and held out his hand to the stranger without even thinking about it.

“Tyler Kane. Any clues as to what’s wrong with it?”

“Francis Hollister,” the other man replied as he gave Tyler’s hand a brief yet firm squeeze. “And no. The engine just died when we stopped and won’t start again.”

“Do you have enough gas? Uh, petrol?”

“I hope so.” Francis glanced at his leather-clad driver with a faint smile on his face.

Tyler also turned to the boy. “Well, have you?” He got a wordless, weak nod in reply. “Okay. Good. Was there anything unusual with it?”

The boy didn’t answer. He didn’t even meet Tyler’s gaze.

“Hello there, anyone at home? I’m talking to you. You’re the driver, you must have noticed something. Besides, if that’s your job, you should have some idea about cars. So?”

Still, the young man ignored him and Tyler’s anger flared up again. “What’s wrong with you? I’m talking to you. Are you deaf?”

“No, he’s not deaf.” Francis took a step closer to him, blocking the chauffeur with his body. “And I’d appreciate it if you didn’t yell at him.”

“Well, what is the matter with him? Can’t he speak for himself?”

“Not right now, no.”

“Why’s that? Cat got his tongue?”

“He’s ordered to silence,” Francis said.

“He’s what?”

“Ordered to silence.”

“By whom?”



Francis didn’t bat an eyelid as he said, “Because I wanted to.”

Sub-Culture #3
“Fuck, not again!” Noah snatched the duvet under his arm, turned around and buried his head in the pillow.

“Uh, it’s your turn, love,” Pierce reminded him, struggling to recall how to work his voice. If only he wasn’t so incredibly, mind-numbingly tired… He dragged an eyelid open and glanced at the clock on the nightstand, but only because it was there anyway, straight in his blurry line of vision. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have bothered.

An assembly of cool, greenish dashes informed him that it was half past two. That meant he would have three more hours of sleep until he needed to get up. Noah would have four—in theory.

“No way!” Noah’s protest was muffled by the pile of pillows and duvet he’d buried himself under, but it was nonetheless vehement. “It was my turn last night already.”

“Sorry,” Pierce mumbled, half apologetic, half relieved and completely anaesthetised with fatigue. “That was the night before last.”

“Fuck.” The mattress bounced as Noah sat up. There was a noisy inhalation of breath—Noah yawning. “Shouldn’t he be able to make it through the night without another feed by now anyway?”

Right on cue, another long, heartbreaking and ear-splitting wail sliced through what was left of the night’s peace and quiet.

“Try telling him that,” Pierce retorted.

“Pheebs stopped needing night feeds—”

“When she was six months old. I know. But Phinneas just isn’t Phoebe. He is who he is and he happens to need his milk at night so we have to give it to him. You have to give it to him.”

“Yeah, right,” Noah grunted but pushed to his feet. “Coming,” he grumbled on the way out into the hall, then, seconds later, his voice sounded much gentler as he said, “Well, hello, you sleepless little gremlin. Got the munchies again, haven’t you?” More words followed, but they were too low for Pierce to make them out. Knowing Noah, it was a mix of sweet little nothings and good-humoured insults, which was his usual way of dealing with the baby whenever he was overtired and needed to vent some of the resulting grumpiness. Noah would never allow himself to let the fiery side of his temper show around either of their two children. It was what made him a wonderful dad—part of it, anyway. He was patient, generous, funny… Pierce found it increasingly hard to focus on the noises Noah was making in the kitchen while he was preparing the baby’s bottle.

No, they weren’t in the kitchen any longer. Already, Noah’s light-hearted chatter was growing louder as he approached their door on the way back to Baby Phin’s bedroom. Listening to the soothing, familiar tone of Noah’s voice, Pierce let the sweet melody of the faint accent in it lull him back to sleep.

The peace didn’t last long. Thirty minutes, according to the cool, greenish dashes on the alarm clock. The mattress bounced again but, instead of Noah’s six foot tall, hard-muscled body, something—or rather someone—significantly smaller, and also a lot bonier, crept into Pierce’s bed. A tiny, but pointed elbow hit him in the ribs with an accuracy that would have made a professional wrestler proud.

“Fu—Phoebe!” Pierce gasped as the air left his lungs a lot faster than he’d intended it to. “What are you doing here?” He rubbed the spot just left of his sternum. It was going to turn into a nasty bruise.

“Phin woke me up,” Phoebe complained.

“That’s no reason for you to be out of bed at this time,” Pierce pointed out.

“But I can’t sleep.”

“No, of course you can’t sleep when you’re walking around and— Oi!”

Occupying the space Noah had deserted only half an hour ago, Phoebe had snatched the duvet in a very good imitation of her father. Just like he had done earlier, she turned around, buried her head in his pillow and started snoring. So much for not being able to sleep.

Pierce knew he should move her, but the notion of getting out of his warm, almost comfortable nest was more than he could face. Besides, his own limbs felt like lead. How he was supposed to move with the added weight of a twelve-year-old if his own body was too heavy for him to drag out of bed was beyond him. He was still contemplating whether or not he should try to carry her back into her own bed or simply ignore the late-night visitor and go back to sleep when Noah returned. Another half-hour had passed, as the numbers on the alarm clock pointed out. 

Author Bio:
Sage has been passionate about books from a very early age on and dreamt of writing one for years while working on the day job instead. It took a very persistent character in the company of a treasured Muse to finally get the first novel going. The fact that he was gay came as a bit of a surprise, but it explained a lot.

Ever since, Sage has been the willing slave to all the fascinating guys who just keep queuing up and want their stories told. This has resulted in several manuscripts at various stages of completion, so there's always something to work on - preferably at night when the rest of the house is asleep.

Sage's characters often have a dramatic and sometimes traumatic past and need to battle some demons to be with the one they love. It doesn't hurt that they usually get quite a lot of naughty action along the way!


Sub-Mission #1
B&N  /  KOBO  /  iTUNES  /  ARe

Re-Submission #2
B&N  /  KOBO  /  iTUNES  /  ARe

Sub-Culture #3
B&N  /  KOBO  /  iTUNES  /  ARe

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