She is a mail order bride. He’s the man who is to get her to her intended safely.

Rachel, an orphan, lives with her aunt and cousin. They don’t want her there, so when her aunt arranges for her to become a mail order bride, Rachel finally gives in, to a thirty-two year old rancher who wants a hard-working woman.

However, on the way to California to meet her fiancé, she becomes close to Thad Morgan’s employee, the man he’s entrusted to bring his bride to him. Clint Ross soon endears himself to Rachel. But when she finds out his true identity, will it ruin everything?

Publisher’s Note: This steamy historical western contains a theme of power exchange.

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“What did I say yesterday morning that I would do to you this morning if you didn’t get up when you were supposed to?” he asked as he arranged her more to his liking, not bothering to hide his patronizing tone.

Since she was already in her skivvies—bloomers and a corset, of which the laces had been so loosened so she could sleep in it, that it was essentially useless—he didn’t even need to throw her skirt up to get to the part of her that needed to be addressed. There was already a beautifully rounded backside lying in just the perfect position.

And he didn’t waste any time in doing so, either, the first firm swat he delivered producing an extremely satisfying, “Yeow!” from the owner of its intended target.

But he certainly didn’t stop there, each subsequent smack producing another exclamation from her.

“Ow! Stop! Don’t! Ow, ow, ow!”

Sometimes, when he spanked a woman, he was very methodical about it, carefully planning a campaign that would end up in a sweaty, sexual tangle by the end.

But this was a punishment spanking, out here in the wilderness, and they were not going to end up making love. So his style reflected his goal: to teach her to obey him. Clint was definitely going to make sure that he wasn’t going to be the first one up tomorrow morning, and he made damned sure that the spanking he administered reflected that fact, all while trying—and failing—not too enjoy it too much.

He did like spanking a woman merely for the titillation of it, hopefully on both parts—but also as a corrective action if and when she disobeyed him.

Since she wasn’t bare—as he preferred, frankly, in deference to her modesty and who he was to her—he couldn’t see how red she was getting as he continued to rain stinging smack after smack down on a rear end that he held pretty perfectly still, with his other arm clamped firmly around her waist. But, even though his hand was getting warm, too, he could tell every time it landed that the flesh beneath it was becoming nicely roasted.

Still, he didn’t stop. Not when she was yelling indignantly at him and heaping invectives on his head, not when she stopped doing so, not when she started to cry, not until she surrendered and hung loose over his legs, after which point he gave her another twenty or so very hard, very deliberate spanks.

After the last of them, it took everything in him not to pull her to him, hugging and holding her while she cried it out on his shoulder. Everything in him wanted to do that for her. He physically ached with the need, which he was surprised to realize outstripped the other need he was definitely feeling for her.

But he couldn’t do that, so he had to settle for helping her down gently and handing her his handkerchief.

When she stood there, hugging herself, and looking at his offering as if it was a coiled snake, he added, “It’s clean.”

She unwound an arm from around herself and took it, wiping her eyes then blowing her nose and handing it back to him, then returning to her former self-soothing position.

And again, the urge to want to comfort her was almost overwhelming, so much so that he had to lace his fingers together in order not to reach out and lift her back onto his lap and into his arms.