Thornton Brothers Trilogy by Carolyn Faulkner - Romance>Erotic Romance eBookLose yourself in the stories of three lusciously dominant, but wonderfully caring brothers – A.J., Beau, and Cade Thornton. Opinionated and stubborn to the core – all of them – but if there’s one thing they can all agree on, it’s that their women need more than the occasional firm hand applied to their nicely rounded derrieres.
Thornton's Hope (Thornton Brothers 1) Book One: Thornton's Hope:
Hope Granger was right- there was never anything good about a phone call that wakes you up in the middle of the night, but this one struck stark terror into the deepest realms of her heart, despite the fact that it wasn't all that unexpected: A.J. Thornton wasn't doing well, and she was the cavalry.
The only person on this green Earth that might – just might – be able to snap him out of the deep blue funk his recent disability had caused. Although she immediately agreed to fly down to Texas to help him, Hope wasn't at all sure she'd be able to – especially not without laying her own heart – and bottom – on the line again.
Thorton's Desire (Thorton Bros. Book 2) Book Two: Thornton's Desire:
Beau Thornton was going to die – especially if his larger than life, over-protective brothers continued to coddle him like a baby instead of expecting him to do as much for himself as he could.
But that wasn't what Beau Thornton wanted to hear from that little slip of a woman, Heather Dennison, even if she did think she was God's gift to physical therapy. And darned if she didn't get under his skin like no other woman ever had. She was strong – going toe to toe with him on more than one occasion about his older brother's care, but still, she was a skittish thing at times – like when he pulled her close for a kiss, or took her over his lap for a long overdue spanking...
Book Three: Thornton's Wish:
Somebody was siphoning funds from the XL-17 project – and Cade Thornton was more than dismayed to find out that every bit of evidence pointed to his fiancé. The love of his life – the woman who held every part of him in her small, capable hands.
He couldn’t believe it – especially when she ran from him once he’d confronted her about the situation. How much more damning could her behavior be?
Gabby Andolini had never been so hurt in her life – how could he possible think that of her? Didn’t he know her better than that? But when there came a wrapping at the door of the hotel she’d escaped to on the shores of Maine, she knew exactly who it was that had come calling. Cade had come to reclaim what was his.
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Two years earlier . . .
His hands slid down the insides of her raised arms as she shimmied out of her smudged t –shirt. They’d spent the afternoon out on the range, on horseback, surveying his land – land that would soon be their land – and now they were cleaning up before indulging in the homemade beef and vegetable stew she’d put in the crock pot before they’d left the house.
It was one of those rarest of times when by a fortunate fluke; they had the house to themselves. Everyone else that was usually milling about the place either was at their own place, working, or out with friends.
A.J. grabbed her hands and put them on his hard, bare chest, tracing her hands with one still somewhat smudged finger. A large, marquis cut sapphire was sandwiched by two large diamonds, nestled as it was on the ring finger of her right hand, while her left hand sported her engagement ring which was a small, badly cut, seriously flawed quarter karat diamond that his father had given his mother all those years ago. One ring old, one new, one for show and one for symbolism.
If she hadn’t captured his heart so completely, if he hadn’t spent all those years waiting and aching for her to grow up, then waiting for the right time for them to come together, it would have been the just for show ring alone. But this woman meant more to him than any woman, ever. She deserved everything he could give her, including every scrap of himself. He’d dated occasionally, but he’d always known, somehow, that this woman belonged to him, and that, when everything aligned correctly, she would be his.
She stood before him in a pretty lavender and lace bra that barely concealed those wonderfully ripened mounds. A.J. snaked his arms around her waist, contracting them ever so gently, settling her carefully against him, knowing there was no way she could mistake the bulge she most surely felt against her yielding tummy as anything other than what it was – a tribute to his rampant, everlasting desire for her.
There had never been any other woman for him – past, present, or future – and now she was his.
One big hand came up to cup her jaw and tip it up, his soft lips descending like a springtime rain, melding into hers, no rough demands or nervous fumbling for him. That wasn’t his style in general, and certainly not with her.
No, their lovemaking tended much more towards the very long and the very slow, each touch trembling with anticipation. He’d known all his life that they would be dynamite when they got together. She excited him like no other woman ever had or could, and he intended to prove that to her every night for the next hundred years or so.
A.J. maneuvered them carefully over to the corner of the bedroom where he proceeded to open his closet door, revealing a full-length mirror. He slipped behind her, one big splayed, brown hand resting on her flat tummy in marked contrast to her pale, creamy skin, pressing very slowly and ever so gently so that she was plastered against him, her backside to his front. Ten pink toes peeped out from under the boot cut jeans that pooled at her feet an instant later. Hope kicked them away impatiently, and came back to stand against him in just her matching bra and demure bikini briefs. A.J. spread his legs so that hers were between them, shortening himself just a bit, so that her head now just barely reached his shoulders.
“I love you,” he whispered against the back of her neck, his lips sliding over that soft, delicate flesh, feeling her shiver in his arms in a way that made him never want to stop. He nipped her softly there, just enough for her to know that he wasn’t quite as tame as she might think; a stallion signaling to his mare that the end was inevitable, but he was willing to go slowly.
The paw that had spread itself naturally over her tummy glided carefully over that small expanse, his pinky getting caught just under the waist of her panties, not forcing things, just dipping there a little, foreshadowing a bit, laying gentle claim to as much of the interesting territory as he could.
This was not the first time they had made love, and it sure enough wasn’t the last, but for him, it always felt new. A.J. couldn’t imagine ever becoming jaded about what this woman gave him, what she surrendered to him each and every time they came together like this – more than her body and her mind and her pleasure. She gave him her soul, as he gave her his.
Nothing and no one had ever been as perfect for him, and nothing and no one ever would be.
Her breasts were damned near perfect. That sensitive hand began to journey upward to the pale lilac covered flesh that enticed him so. The first time they were together, Hope had tried – once – to convince him that her thighs were lumpy with cellulite, and that her right breast was just slightly larger than her left, and that her skin was splotchy and unbecoming without makeup, which he’d required that she relieve herself of before they began to make love.
With no warning what so ever, he’d flipped her over on to her tummy on his custom king sized bed where they had been lazily basking in the afterglow, placing his big right hand over almost all of her well rounded bottom, and told her in no uncertain terms that those were spanking words. That if she continued to run herself down like that, he would spank her bottom until she couldn’t sit comfortably for a week, and that he’d better never hear her saying anything like that about herself again, or she’d find herself in exactly the same position, each and every time.
Hope couldn’t have been any more surprised if he had confessed to her that he preferred the company of men. She’d known A.J. all her life, and she would have bet her life that he would never have raised his hand to a woman in any situation. And a spanking? She wasn’t six years old!
But what alarmed her the most about his threat was the fact that it caused a distinct tingle where she really didn’t want it to. Their lovemaking so far had been absolutely unbelievable, and she wondered if her disturbing response might have been a result of that; she was so attuned to him and so sensitive to him that her body would respond to anything he suggested. She dismissed the thought. Despite her lifelong craving for him that had only worsened since they’d given in to their desires, she wasn’t about to let him lead her down the road into some sort of strange fetish or kink. That just wasn’t going to happen.
Now, several months later, he hadn’t repeated his threat about spanking her, and watching herself in a mirror with him like this was just about as kinky as she wanted to get. As those huge hands molded themselves to her lace covered breasts, she couldn’t help but arch her back, pressing them even more firmly into his palms, desperately wishing there was no material between her sensitive flesh and his calloused palms.
He was everything she’d ever wanted physically – a heavily muscled six foot four man with the trademark Thornton shock of hair, black in his case, with sharply focused vivid blue eyes and a face that was anything but handsome. But that didn’t matter. Her A.J. was more of a man than any ten men put together – any ten men that weren’t his brothers, anyway – and everything about him, from his purposeful stride to his broad as a barn shoulders, screamed his confidence in himself and his manhood. A.J. had never needed to chase woman – more than enough of them had chased after him since he’d hit puberty, because every pore he owned fairly oozed with quiet, authoritative masculinity.
No wonder she’d been in love with him since before she could remember.
When he pressed his lips to the side of her neck and whispered huskily, “I think this bra has got to go, darlin’,” her entire body shuddered convulsively. That voice scraped slowly along her already fevered skin. It was very deep and slightly hoarse, permanently; the result of getting caught in the throat by the hoof of a very unhappy bull when he was in his teens.
Hope certainly wasn’t going to complain about it. He had a bedroom voice to go along with his bedroom eyes. Even the most run of the mill comments were enough to make her nipples peak, as if they already were within his gentle grasp.
He dispensed with her bra easily, letting it fall to the floor in a heap beside them while his hands returned to much more intriguing territory. Hope had always considered that her breasts were too large, but A.J. was working on disabusing her of that notion, too. His hands were just big enough to cup them perfectly, which he did, very careful not to massage too hard as he knew that her breasts were exquisitely sensitive. But those insistent nipples poked into his calloused palms, begging for the agonizing attentions of his strong fingers that he was only too willing to provide.
Hope’s long, guttural moan, as his fingertips and thumbs claimed those impudent points of hers and squeezed carefully but firmly, settled unerringly in his groin, making him answer her moan with one of his own.
She couldn’t be still when he did this. She simply couldn’t. His hands on her – in any way – inspired in her a need to move compulsively – Hope could no more suppress it than she could stop the sun from rising tomorrow morning. Her hips began to move slowly, rhythmically, and no amount of trying to suppress the impulse had any effect as her jean clad bottom worked back and forth over the answering ridge in his pants. The fact that she could excite him like this suffused her with heat, from the top of her head to the tips of her toes.
A.J. wasn’t an overly demonstrative man, usually. He didn’t fawn all over her, or have to constantly be touching her, like some of the few men she’d dated. He had too much confidence in himself and in her for that. There wasn’t an insecure bone in his body.
When they made love, he was so romantic and attentive and focused on her that she could literally barely stand it. His eyes drank her in almost as avidly as her own were feasting on him. Every touch, every kiss, every caress brought her that must closer to a screaming, frenzied end, that burst into her mind every time she saw him, even in the most tame of situations, like when his hand brushed hers at the dinner table, or they were just sitting together on the couch watching “CSI”. Since they’d come together as a couple, Hope had lived her life on the edge of ecstasy, and even just a small smile from him across the room could make her whole body contract with an almost painful awareness.
She looked down, watching the way he handled her so carefully, knowing the incredible power contained within his hands and arms. He was the biggest, strongest man she knew, and yet she had never felt any way but completely safe in his embrace.
A.J. knew he wasn’t going to be able to last very long if she kept dancing those curvaceous pillows against him. He squatted down quickly, taking her panties with him, then lifting her into his arms as he rose, carrying her to his big bed, which had begun to be almost unbearably lonely on those long nights when she elected to stay at her apartment.
But he didn’t want to think about that right now. He wanted to revel in everything about her. His senses were nearly exploding. Her light, flowery scent filled his head as he dipped it between her full breasts to kiss her sternum, gathering those beautiful mounds against his cheeks, adoring the feel of them as they nearly overflowed his palms, then rearing back to catch her all over arch as his fingers found those sensitive nipples again, rolling and pinching with gentle firmness.
She appealed to him on every possible level, and he had to smack himself upside the head some times in order to realize that she was truly his to touch in this intimate, reverent manner.
“Please, A.J. Please!” It seemed all she could say, the only words her pleasure-muddled mind could get out.
He was of a mind to draw it out, to make her blush all over as she always did when he made her tell him exactly what she wanted. But it was too raw, and he was too embarrassingly close to his own end to delay things any longer than he absolutely had to.
A.J. reached down only enough to adjust himself out of the confinement of his jeans and underwear, settling himself back between her legs, nestling his rigid length against the home it sought between her legs.
Hope didn’t know why, but being naked beneath him with him still somewhat clothed, only undressed enough to complete their connection and let her hands wander over his bulging chest . . . somehow it made the intimate things they were doing together ache just that much more, almost to the unbearable point. It made her feel just the slightest bit submissive, helpless against him, as if she was being taken instead of being made love to, and that thought both drove her crazy and festered angrily in the back of her mind.
But the crazy part won out hands down as he pressed himself inexorably inside her. She thought she would never get over how big he was, how her body clung to him with no direction from her, almost as if it was trying to deny him access, which was the last thing she wanted. She needed him to complete her, she needed to be filled to overflowing with him as she always was – it was the only way she could meet her own end and shatter around him with a scream that would leave her hoarse for days afterwards.
He didn’t disappoint her in the least, riding her inexorably but with such a tender, careful edge that she could barely stand it, whimpering and writhing beneath him like a mindless creature, bent on just one thought, one inevitable conclusion that he brought her to without mercy, watching her every second of the way, gauging himself and his reactions – his very plunges and retreats – to her mewls and archings.
When they finally collapsed on top of each other after a much longer time than she would have guessed she could last without exploding in to pieces all around him – not that he’d given her any choice about it – he’d rolled slightly to her right, keeping one big hand’s claim on her hip and nuzzling her shoulder, as if he couldn’t stand for them to be apart in the least.
“You’re going to kill me, you know. We’re too damned good together, and I’m too old for you.”
“Want some Geritol, Grampa?” Hope asked dryly, surprised her brain could summon the sarcasm when it felt like he’d dissolved it into so much pudding.
“No, but Viagra might not be too off . . .” A.J. admitted humbly.
Hope snorted. “Puh –leeze. If you were on Viagra, you’d kill me. I can barely keep up with you as it is, old man.” She ran her hand lazily from his wrist to his thickly muscled shoulder. “Besides, it ain’t that you’re older than I am that’s the problem. It’s that I’m so damned ugly – ”
A.J. didn’t even think. Even exhausted as he was – as he was likely to be for some time – it only took him a mere flick of those big fingers to grasp her hip and turn it, instead of caress it, bringing her onto her tummy gently, and silently marveling at the gorgeous line of her back and bottom, almost reluctant to do what he knew he had to.
He reached up, before she realized what he was going to do, and gathered her wrists together in his left hand, slowly, so as not to arouse her suspicions . . .yet. He knew she was going to want to kill him long before he was through doing what he knew he needed to do for her.
A.J. was not going to tolerate his intended – or his wife – running herself down like that. Not in private, not in public. Not at all – even within the confines of her own mind. She would find herself in this exactly position if he ever got any wind of anything coming out of her mouth that even slightly resembled a putdown aimed at herself. He just wouldn’t allow it – not when he loved her to distraction and saw what a wonderful person she was – how she gave so much to everyone she knew, gave of herself until it hurt, was funny and bright and warm and, no matter what she thought or said, sexy as hell and pretty, to boot.
A.J. took a deep breath, looking at the way his hand covered nearly every inch of that generous white bottom of hers. He would much have preferred to just give her a back rub, maybe lick his way over every inch of her as he had when they had first come together intimately, but instead he was going to have to spank her. To hurt her. To make her cry.
And it wasn’t easy. It especially wasn’t easy because he’d never talked to her about this, never really put forth the idea that he had always subscribed to what most people would consider to be a less than enlightened view of marriage and close relationships between men and women.
He’d always wanted to be married. He’d always wanted a marriage like his parents’ – where his father was the undisputed – benevolent, yes, but undisputed nonetheless – head of the family. Not that his beautiful mother had ever kowtowed to him in the least. But there had never been any of the screaming matches he’d heard at friends’ houses, where the children had had to cringe in a closet to get away from the sounds of their parents verbally tearing at each other.
His father had never had to raise his voice at anyone – much less his kids or his wife. He didn’t need to. All he’d had to do was say his wife’s name, in that deadly calm, almost whisper of a deep voice. “Naomi.” And the next morning, they would have worked it out. He came to know, once he’d grown up some, that part of “working it out” was his mother submitting to his father’s discipline. There had never been any sign of any sort of abuse – no black eyes to hide, no broken bones; he couldn’t imagine his father ever, ever raising his fist to hurt his mother in any way. The man was too completely devoted to her and his family to ever do anything like that. They were so excruciatingly happy together it was sometimes hard to look at them when they were making calves’ eyes at each other, which they had done to their dying days.
And now he was going to continue that tradition – that solid base of happiness and love and respect – with the woman who would be his own wife.
Hope’s indignant scream at his first swat should have been his first clue that she was not going to accept this easily. She didn’t know what he was trying to do; she was still basking in the afterglow, not quite in her right mind yet, when he’d turned her onto her stomach. She’d been hoping for a lovely massage, as he’d done for her before. Even when he’d taken her wrists in his hand, she hadn’t worried.
But that first swat had caught her by surprise with its mere existence, as well as its pain. It wasn’t a playful boyfriend smack. And she couldn’t really even claim that she didn’t expect it. It wasn’t as if he hadn’t warned her several times exactly what he would do if she continued to insult herself in his presence. In the back of her mind, though, she had been quite sure that he could never, would never, touch a woman in a painful manner.
And this most certainly qualified as a painful manner. An extremely painful manner, especially since he continued to deliver crisp, sharp swats, one after the other, without pause, to her rapidly reddening rear.
No amount of wiggling or writhing or kicking her feet up seemed to help, either. As soon as she’d started launching her feet back towards her rear, he’d placed a long, heavy leg diagonally across hers and the weight of it was enough to still her every effort to block the God awful spanks he was raining down onto her poor, quickly roasted rump.
“Stop it! Now! A.J.! Cut it out!!” She could barely get coherent words out while he was blistering her butt like this.
But A.J. was resolute. “I’ve told you before what would happen if you kept saying things like that about yourself. I told you less than half an hour ago when we first started to make love. I should have taken you over my knee then, but I didn’t. I wanted you too much, and I let my libido override what I knew you needed. But then you called yourself ugly again, and I won’t stand for it. I just won’t. You’re going to get a good, thorough spanking every time I hear you say anything like that about yourself.”
He continued to spank – so long and hard that Hope was certain that she was going to go crazy from it, until she was a limp, ragged doll, her face wet with angry tears, eyes swollen and, looking she knew, uglier than she’d ever looked in her life.
When he finally stopped, she rocketed off the bed as if he’d shot her out of a cannon, slipping into her panties then rummaging through the drawer she’d occupied in his room for a pair of shorts that would go easier on her still burning bottom. After shucking into them without so much as a word to him, she caught the sparkle of his rings on her fingers and very quietly took them off, not trying to hide the movement from him, doing it with no fanfare, no discussion, no real thought.
She wouldn’t be engaged – much less married – to a man who could abuse her like that. She just wouldn’t.
Hope ignored him as he trailed after her, having kicked off his jeans afterwards, and trying awkwardly to drag them up his legs as she was already out the bedroom door. She was already at her car before he was able to catch up with her, tugging her arm back and turning her towards him.
“What’s the meaning of this?” He held out his hand, where the rings were nestled in his palm, looking small and defenseless, which was exactly how she felt, too.
Hope refused to look at him. “I thought my meaning would be clear. But perhaps not, to a man like you. We are officially unengaged.”
As much as he wanted to go the caveman route and drag her back up to his bedroom and hold her and talk to her about why he’d done what he’d done, he instead stepped back and let her go. If she didn’t want to be here, if she didn’t want to marry him or even be around him, he certainly wasn’t going to force her to do so.
She’d come to regret what she’d done and come crying back to him. Then he’d smooth things over with her.
He was sure of it.
She’d come back to him.
She had to.