***Note: The Conquered Brides is up for discussion today on Spanking Stories Book Club over on Celeste Jones' blog. Please feel free to join us even if you haven't read any of the stories in this collection!***
Commanding the Princess excerpt:
There was a great stretching in the air and many expectant grunts from the men about him. He whipped his head toward the gate and saw that it was slowly opening. A white-cloaked figure was approaching the gate, a stark contrast against the blood-soaked snow and grime of war all around. Slowly it dawned on him that he was looking at a porcelain-skinned woman who had her head held high as she slowly walked through the mass of men now hemming her in on all sides.
Then Gerhard realized who it was, and he felt like someone had just thrown ice water over his head.
This was no lady-in-waiting or minor noblewoman sent to beg for favorable terms of surrender, although it should have been. He would have never guessed that the princess would come out herself.
The men milled about yet made a clear path between himself and the princess as she approached, and upon reaching him she did not wait for him to speak first. “I am Princess Susanna of Hohenzollern,” she told him with a clear, smooth voice. “I’ve come to beg mercy for the suffering of my people.”
He could hear the fear in her voice, but just barely. He had not expected this. He had expected her to bargain, not to beg. Nonetheless, he had to act quickly, before the crowd of soldiers got it in their heads to exact their own justice upon her person. They were a rough bunch, and he didn’t want to have to do any more killing today. He could tell by the way some of them growled that he needed to claim a quick hold on this situation.
“Mercy?” he replied loudly so that his men could hear him. “What mercy did your knights show to those whose farms they pillaged and whose daughters they ravished, as you did nothing to stop them?” His orders were to bring her alive to Vienna to face the imperial court, but if he wanted to keep these men—many of them recruited from the very villages her knights had ransacked—from trying to kill her here and now, he needed to let them know he shared their anger.
He expected a defense of her actions, or perhaps even pleas for his mercy, but her response stunned him. “I do not beg mercy for myself, but for my people. I stand before you prepared to accept whatever justice you see fit, if only you will spare the innocent women and children of this castle, and the men who fought bravely to defend it.”
Gerhard paused, considering. This rabble of an army the nobles of the Free Cities had cobbled together was going to sack this castle, take everything that they could carry, and probably try to burn the rest, that much was certain, and he would be hard pressed to keep them from having their way with any woman they could lay hands on. Men like these thought women to be little more than the spoils of war.
The princess looked at him through glistening eyes, but no tears spilled down her cheeks. Still, his heart began to clench and a part deep inside him demanded that he acquiesce. When he spoke at last, he spoke loudly again so that everyone could hear him.
“I am Gerhard of Bavaria, and you have my word that the lives of your people will be spared. If women are taken from this castle, they will be taken as wives, and they will be treated well by the men who take them.” He paused again, before speaking directly to his army. “You may take whatever plunder you can find, but if any man among you commits rape or murder, I will have him hanged!”
The relief on the face of the princess filled Gerhard with a strange joy, though he knew his next words would bring the fear back to those beautiful eyes. He had to deliver the emperor’s message, something he had been dreading since he’d first caught sight of her eight months before. “As for you, princess, you will be brought to the court of the Holy Roman Emperor in Vienna, where you will stand trial for your life.”
The Conquered Brides blurb:
When the castle they called home is besieged and ultimately falls, five women are captured and carried off as wives by their foes. Will they be treated as no more than the spoils of war, or can their new lords prove themselves worthy of the love and submission of their conquered brides?
The Conquered Brides is a five-book collection featuring these brand-new titles from top erotic romance authors:
Commanding the Princess by Korey Mae Johnson
As the ruler of Hohenzollern Castle in name only, Susanna has watched helplessly for years as her power-hungry uncle made one enemy after another for her. One enemy stands out, and the moment she catches sight of him, Princess Susanna is certain that it will be Gerhard of Bavaria who brings her world down around her. As his army smashes through her gates, Susanna makes the only choice she has left. She surrenders herself to Gerhard, hoping to win mercy for her people, though she fears it will come at the cost of her life. But she soon learns that Gerhard has other plans for her, plans which may end with her surrendering much more than just her castle to him.
The Knight's Seduction by Renee Rose
Avowed to never again yield to a man's ill-treatment, Lady Daisy stands ready to fight to the death when her castle is sacked. The imposing knight Sir Barrett has other ideas, however, and to her dismay, Daisy soon finds herself not only disarmed, but soundly spanked as well. Sir Barrett takes her as his captive bride, but when she shows real terror at the prospect of consummating their marriage, he offers her a bargain. She will offer her body to him and accept the pleasurable torments he inflicts, but he will not claim her fully until she aches for it so badly she begs him. Certain she will do no such thing, Daisy agrees, but can she resist the knight's seduction?
The Widow Is Mine by Ashe Barker
Since her husband's untimely passing, Lady Natalia has resigned herself to a quiet life as a young widow and perhaps one day as a nun. But when her adopted home is conquered by the enemy, her world is turned upside down. After he rescues her from the chaos of Hohenzollern's fall, Duke Stefan of Richtenholst cannot imagine allowing Natalia to languish behind the walls of a convent. The duke takes Natalia home as his wife, and he quickly proves himself ready to compel her obedience when it is necessary, but can he ever truly make her his own?
Conquering Lady Claire by Sue Lyndon
As Hohenzollern Castle falls, mayhem unfolds around Lady Claire, and her only aim is to lead as many women and children of the castle to safety as possible. In an odd turn of fortune, her courageous efforts ultimately lead to her capture by none other than Lord Galien of Minrova, the very man that her brother, a powerful duke, recently commanded to find her and claim her as his wife. Claire's defiance is quickly overcome by means of a firm hand applied to her bare bottom, but Galien is not content merely going through the motions of a political marriage. His skilled lovemaking soon leaves his new bride begging for more, but can he conquer her heart as well?
Kidnapped and Claimed by Dinah McLeod
When her husband's repeated infidelities and drunken insults become too much to bear, Lady Cecily flees to her childhood home at Hohenzollern, but things quickly go from bad to worse and she is kidnapped from the castle stables only moments after her arrival. Cecily ignores her abductor's warnings of ruin about to befall Hohenzollern and his claim that he took her from the castle only to keep her safe. She resists him every step of the way, until at last he spanks her long and hard. Despite his firm chastisement, it soon becomes clear to Cecily that her captor cares for her in a way her husband never did. But can she forgive him for stealing her from her home?
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