Sunday, November 20, 2011
CBLS Tour: For Queen and Country
I am pleased to present you with an excerpt of For Queen And Country (Shimmy And Steam) by Michelle Kopra. I hope you enjoy it:)
Sparks of lust fly between the queen’s military advisor Lord Colin Mandrake, and her chief spy aboard The Gypsy, Lady Constance of Berkshire. However, no matter how good the sex is between them, Constance and Colin butt heads over who is in charge of the mission to capture the sultan Khalid Bin Bargash. Can Colin win over her heart, and can Constance teach Colin who is boss?
“Shush!” Constance leaned closer to the speakers. Petyr’s voice disrupted by static as the wind once more it broke into the tent. “The captain couldn’t land The Gypsy in this wind, and we need to be on the ground to get decent reception.”
“Argh. Get on with it, Petyr.” Lilly shivered again as she watched him on the sepia-colored screen.
Standing in the corner of the hall, the raised platform made him appear taller. His hair was slicked back, and mustache twirled upwards. His black eyes scanned the crowd in the imperial winter palace and held his arms up dramatically.
“Hush.” Constance tried to appear calm. “This is his first time out. He’s doing just fine.”
“His imperial majesty the Tsar Alexander, I give you the mysterious, the enchanting – La Seraphine!”
Constance took a drag of her honey-flavored cigarillo. On the screen, the center of the hall lit up, illuminating a small elegantly decorated tent. Gold coins shimmered along the edges, pulsing to the beat of the drums. The music rose in tempo and drapes slowly opened. From within, long bare legs appeared in a suggestive pose.
Constance took another nervous drag. A collective gasp rippled through the court. A shapely leg curled around the drape. The music paused. When it began again, the seductive sounds of the oboe joined in. The beat slowed down, the dancer twisted her legs to the music. Twirling hips, rolling curves, and Constance nodded with relief as the Tsar leaned forward.
“She’s got his attention.”
The Tsar lifted a monocle. Even on the sepia screen, the shell around the lens glowed with an unusual green light.
“Is that what we’re after?” Lilly adjusted brass knobs on the panel to get a clearer picture.
“No, the boss lady wanted Sera to place a listening device.”
The music built to its peak, pausing as the court held their breaths. With a crash of the drums, the fabric of the tent billowed to the ground like wings of a butterfly. The lovely Seraphine exposed.
Silence filled the hall as courtiers took in the sight. A headdress of coins shimmered over her honey locks. She stood in a pose, one arm over her head, and the other resting at her knee. With a flick of her wrist, gold coins jingled on her head and chest as the music began again. The beat quickened to match the speed of her shimmying hips.
The crowd remained breathless as she twirled. Hair and sheer fabric spun around her. Long legs descended off the platform taking steps as her hips curved forward. She reached the seated group, a veil, matching the fabric of her skirt appeared in her hands. Swaying to the music, she lifted the veil over her head and rolled her hips side to side until she inched closer towards the Tsar with a seductive smile.
More than one guard stepped forward, weapon at the ready to stop the dancer. However, the Tsar with a sheen of lust on his face waved them away. Seraphine danced, letting the fabric of her skirt sway against his legs.
Neither the Tsar nor his guards heard the frantic voice piped through a jeweled bit of earring.
“Abort!” Constance shouted, cigarillo lying forgotten on the ground. “I repeat, abort. The boss lady has called off the mission and is summoning us home. Return to camp immediately.”
Constance saw bewilderment on Petyr’s face, but couldn’t give her operatives any more information over the earpiece. Behind her, a flurry of activity kicked up when the ticker tape came through the makeshift console.
Petyr slid out of view of the console. However, Sera continued to dance for the Tsar.
“Dammit girl, get out of there,” Constance muttered.
But Sera did not leave. Instead, her veil spun again, making it flutter around her. As she spun in front of the hidden camera, she waved the hand signal for–Plan B.
You can purchase your copy of For Queen And Country (Shimmy And Steam) (Amazon) or at Smashwords.
About the Author:
When not tending to every whim of my kids, cats, and hubby- I am writing stories about elves, airships, and witches. I can be found lurking on Facebook.