Here's the blurb.
Nicholas, Lord Amherst and the Honorable Mr. Ian Stanton will take questions here and at the slash and burn blog.
And to whet your appetite, here's a little excerpt that's not on the Samhain website.
When at last the door opened, Ian spun ’round to be relieved of his coat, sufficiently irritated by Simmons’ delayed arrival to forgo his usual greeting.
Perhaps the fellow had been overindulging in whatever libations were being offered to celebrate the day in the servants’ hall because the valet was clumsy rather than deft, struggling just to ease the coat from Ian’s shoulders.
“And I shall be retiring, Simmons.”
Instead of the expected “Very good, sir,” the man left his arms pinned behind his back and brushed his fingers beneath Ian’s cravat. The unanticipated contact awakened Ian’s skin, his flesh alight with delightful ripples of sensation.
“What the devil?”
He would have turned to face the man, but Simmons stepped closer, hands moving to remove the starched tie while pressing his hips intimately against Ian’s arse.
The shock and terror in his gut, even the pain of his confined shoulders, could not dampen the rush of arousal evoked by the touch, by the strength of another man’s embrace.
“Simmons. I must ask that you remember yourself.” Ian twisted free, retreating to place a wall at his vulnerable back, but his all-too-vulnerable front was exposed to—Nicky.
The identity of his assailant did little to mitigate Ian’s dismay.
“Are you mad?” Ian struggled with his coat, anger lending him sufficient strength to tear one of the sleeves from the body.
Nicky locked the door and removed his own coat. “It is Boxing Day, after all. Simmons has the evening off, as do almost all of the servants. Surely you would not deprive the man of his well-earned holiday.”
“It is not Boxing Day for another hour,” Ian asserted as the solemn toll of the chapel bell made him a liar. He flung his torn coat to the floor.
Nicky’s cravat parted company with his shirt, revealing a neck still defined with the strong tendons Ian had once traced with his tongue. Quelling thoughts of other flesh his mouth longed to revisit grew more impossible with each piece of clothing Nicky dropped onto the Aubusson rug.
“What are you doing?”
“I am preparing for bed. That bed.” Nicky indicated the four-poster in the center of the room.
“Is the castle so crowded the son of the house has been turned out of his rooms?”
“If it pleases you to think so.” Nicky straightened, torso bared to Ian’s gaze.
Firelight gilded Nicky’s skin, gleaming on the fine hairs of his breast, drawing Ian’s eye to the waist of Nicky’s breeches where the hair thickened and darkened. The garnet on his signet ring flashed as Nicky’s hands moved to those buttons.
Ian shut his eyes. “No.”
“No?” The amusement in Nicky’s voice had Ian looking again, forgetting what imminent danger had prompted his action. But Nicky only bent to remove his shoes and stockings, gifting Ian with the sight of the firm curve of his backside under the tight kerseymere breeches.
Nicky brought his hands to rest above his hips, fingers disappearing under the waistband. “Is it truly no or is that what the good soldier, the dutiful second son, feels compelled to say?”
Ian’s throat burned as it tightened, but he could not look away.
“Whom do you seek to save with your denial, me or you?” Nicky persisted. He stepped closer, but made no move to touch Ian. “Why are we to be denied pleasure when you must know how precious and brief life is?”
“The risk of—”
“You threw yourself against a wall of French rifles in service to your father’s idea of honor. Can you not permit yourself something your own honor knows is right? How can it be wrong when we both desire it?” Nicky shoved his breeches down and stepped free, the proof of his desire standing proud and hard.
As swiftly as snow falling off a steep roof, Ian’s body dropped into a pit of raw need. He made a last effort to find any handhold which might keep him from the abyss.
“I do want…” you “…this, but only what we did before. We cannot, I will not…” He tried making a gesture to communicate the specific deed.
“Bugger me?” Nicky grinned. “Fuck me?”
Despite Ian’s shock, the coarseness of Nicky’s words brought a faster beat of blood to Ian’s prick. That unabated grin suggested Nicky knew damned well what effect he had wrought. His next step brought Nicky close enough to try the truth with his hand. Fingers traced the outline of Ian’s prick beneath a layer of wool and linen, a light pressure that offered nothing beyond exquisite torment. A quick hard rub against the crown, dragging the linen across the damp skin until heat pulsed from the tip, the touch as unerringly accurate as Ian’s own.
Pleasure stole his breath as surely as a fist to the stomach. Sucking the air through his teeth, he reached a hand to Nicky’s shoulder, hips tipping into the caress.
Nicky leaned forward until his breath moved against Ian’s ear. “While I find your concern utterly charming, what makes you believe you could take my arse if I didn’t allow it?”
Ignoring the wail of protest from his prick and balls, Ian transferred his grasp to Nicky’s wrist to still the motion of his palm. “I am well aware that many now consider me less a man, but with all your protestations, I would have thought—”
Nicky laughed. “Christ, Ian, try not to be more of an ass than the good Lord intended you to be. You couldn’t best me even when you had four inches and two-stone advantage.”
“I’ve never had two stones on you, you country-fed beast.” The retort came unbidden to his lips, their long habit of verbal sparring impossible to amend.
“By God, how I’ve missed you.” Nicky chuckled and yanked Ian’s cravat free.
Ian felt his own lips curve in answer. There had always been so much laughter between them. For years, that absence cut as keenly as the loss of Nicky’s touch.
Shoving away bolster and counterpane, Nicky flung himself onto the bed. “Now. Kindly divest yourself of those clothes and get up here before I am forced to seek other amusements.”
Nicky arranged himself in a gloriously naked display, familiar laugh and cornflower-blue eyes at odds with the strangeness of a body more heavily muscled, more thickly pelted, but no less enthralling than the one that had filled Ian’s dreams as he slept in tents on the edges of battlefields. Longing clawed deeper hollows than all those years of denial, until again Ian was deprived of sufficient breath.
Such was the assault wrought on his senses by Nicky’s sprawl across the mattress that Ian had stripped away waistcoat and shirt and unfastened his breeches before Nicky’s last words attached themselves to a meaning. The haze of lust clouding Ian’s mind took on a red veil of anger.
Nicky sighed and leaned forward, taking Ian by the arm. “I swear to provide you with a detailed history of the past five years in writing and affix the bloody Carleigh seal to my testimony. But if I don’t have you right now, one of us will end up dead.”