Domestic Discipline: real-life practice v. fiction

I’m so excited to welcome Cara Bristol to my blog.  She’s here talking about a topic near and dear to my heart; domestic discipline.  I’ve dived pretty deep into DD stories with my Corbin’s Bend books and I can’t wait to get my hands on her newest release.  Let’s learn a bit more about it from Cara herself.


Domestic discipline is a lifestyle practice in which one spouse assumes responsibility as leader of the marriage or “head of household” while the other spouse agrees to follow his/her direction. Often, the HoH enforces his or her rules with punishment, often spanking. Like BDSM, domestic discipline is consensual, and there are elements of domination and submission to it, however, it DD not as ritualized as BDSM. The “Taken-in-Hand” or submissive partner has a good idea of what the expectations are, but the rules are less formal, more tacit.

Why would someone submit to DD? Reasons can be as varied as the individuals involved, but generally the Taken-in-Hand likes to held accountable for his/her actions and feels secure having the oversight of a dominant partner.

Domestic Discipline, the romance novella, is a two-story fiction anthology about two couples who practice domestic discipline. Wife on the Lam, is light and humorous, while Rahm’s Way is more intense and delves deeper into domination and submission. There is no right or wrong way to practice domestic discipline, and the two stories show two different DD relationships.

An excerpt from Rahm’s Way, Domestic Discipline

He unfolded his crossed arms. “Instead of sharing your feelings, you sneaked behind my back and presented me with a fait accompli.”

“What good would sharing my feelings have done? You still would have said no.”

“Yes, but we would have talked this out. You agreed that when you and I differed, I would have the final say. Do you think you should be able to pick and choose which rules you should follow?”

Sometimes, yeah, she did. “No,” she replied.

“Don’t you think there should be consequences for disobedience?”

In general, yes. Did she wish she could avoid those consequences, hell, yes! “I guess,” she muttered mutinously. She glanced at his face. He arched his eyebrows. Don’t make it worse for yourself. “I mean, yes, Rahm,” she amended in a more respectful tone.

He unlocked a drawer in his desk and extracted a paddle. “Here?” Cadence squeaked.

He pulled an armless wooden chair away from the small round meeting table adjacent to his desk and sat. “Lower your pants.”

“Rahm, please. Couldn’t we at least wait until tonight? At home?”

“I didn’t choose the time or venue, Cadence, you did.”

She eyed the locked door.

“The walls are thick. No one will hear.”

Her eyes smarted with tears as she undid her pants. She enjoyed funishment as much as the next girl, but ass-blistering discipline? Hated it. She’d burn every one of his paddles if she could get away with it. Rahm approached discipline the same way he did everything else in his life— decisively, swiftly. He kept a number of paddles handy so he could spank on the spot. But she hadn’t known about the one in his desk. She had not missed the discipline spankings while he’d been away. Not one bit.

But she knew when she could push him, and when she couldn’t. She dropped her pants. “Panties, too.”

Domestic Discipline Blurb:

Love, desire, domination, and submission. Two domestic discipline romances by USA Today bestselling author Cara Bristol in one volume.

Wife on the Lam

Janelle wants to take a luxury vacation for her wedding anniversary. Despite numerous hints, husband Brent misses all the clues and plans a business trip! Miffed, she flies off alone to a luxury resort. She’s going to celebrate—with or without him.

Brent didn’t have to work. He’d planned a second honeymoon to the luxury Cabana Resort. Janelle might have ruined his surprise, but he’s not going to let her ruin their anniversary, too. He has a little trick up his sleeve to take his errant wife in hand and get their marriage back on track.

Rahm’s Way

Before her military husband left for his tour of duty, Cadence Simmons relied on Rahm’s love, direction, and protection. His absence forced her to become more independent and make decisions for herself. After serving his country, he’s home for good and eager to resume their marriage as it was before. Only Cadence isn’t quite sure she wants things exactly as they were. Can domestic discipline guide this couple through some major changes?

Buy Links:

Amazon: Amazon Link





Author Bio Cara Bristol:

USA Today bestselling author Cara Bristol writes “nice and naughty” stories of love, romance, and humor featuring strong alpha heroes. She is a no. 1 bestseller in BDSM erotica, science fiction romance, and holiday fiction on Amazon. She is best known for her Rod and Cane Society domestic discipline series and her Breeder D/s sci-fi romance series. She lives in Missouri with her own alpha hero, her husband.

Connect with Cara:

Author Newsletter |Website | Facebook Author Page | Amazon Author page

Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

L=Lukus’ Lecture #SpankA2Z #NSFW


Welcome back to the Spanking A to Z blog hop and my challenge to write an original free erotic short for each letter of the alphabet.   The catch is every single sentence must have at least one word in it that starts with that day’s letter.  Today’s short is not so short, but it is steamy and I hope it’s a nice treat for everyone, especially fans of Lukus and Tiffany.  Sassy Tiffany is up to her old tricks and not listening to her Dom very well.  There might be a bit more than a lecture involved.  🙂

A huge shout out to Myra Danvers and Jennifer Bene for editing today’s post.  It was bad enough I roped myself into this challenge, but now I’m dragging my friends along for the ride.  Also, don’t miss the chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card. Check out info at the end of the post.

L is for Lukus’ Lecture

“Thanks for lunch, Aiden. I was so worried I was going to lose you after last weekend.   I’m glad you’re coming to terms with the fact that I love Lukus.”

Tiffany lamented that her brother had lectured the entire lunch about how she was throwing her life away on Lukus Mitchell.   She hoped one day soon he would learn how happy she was since meeting her new Dom.

“Don’t make me laugh, sis. I loathe leaving you here, knowing what kind of a place this is.”

So maybe Aiden hadn’t come to terms with his sister’s love life.

“Well, you shouldn’t loathe it because I’ve never been happier than I’ve been since moving in with Lukus here at his loft.” Tiffany looked at her watch, nervous that she’d been gone too long.   “Listen, I really need to leave, but stay in touch, okay?”

Aiden leaned in to give his sister a kiss on her cheek before she hopped out of his Landrover.   She was relieved when her brother didn’t leave until she’d input her entry keycode to Lukus’ place – a block-sized, seven-story building that housed his BDSM club, The Punishment Pit; his security firm, Titan Securities; and his personal two-story loft. Considering there was an evil maniac out to harm Tiffany and her best friend, Brianna, Tiffany felt safer the second she heard the heavy door latch behind her.

Guilt started closing in once she was in the small lift that would take her upstairs. With Jake Davenport still on the loose, her Dom had her on lock-down at the loft. Lukus was ultra protective of his submissive fiancé, and she’d been going stir crazy being stuck inside. Most days he didn’t even let her go into The Beauty Box, and when she did go to work, she always had a bodyguard.   Thank goodness Lukus had left her home alone today so she could sneak out to have lunch with her brother.

The ding of the elevator arriving at the large loft jarred her out of her thoughts.   She’d barely stepped out onto the linoleum of the foyer when she came face-to-face with a frantic Lukus, cellphone at his ear.

“Let it go, Derek.   You can lift the search because she just walked in. Later.”

Tiffany couldn’t say a word for the lump choking her up at realizing her Dom had found out she’d disobeyed him. Based on the look on his face, he was furious.

Lukus lunged forward, closing the gap between them to pull her into his arms, squeezing her so long and hard she started to feel light headed. She could feel him trembling, which made her feel even worse than if he’d just started lecturing her for not listening.

By the time he pulled back enough so she could look into his eyes, she was the one trembling, knowing how Lukus would most likely be dealing with her decision to leave the loft without a guard.

“Lukus, I can explain…”

“Really – because I can’t wait to hear why the woman I love… the woman who has agreed to let me be her Dom and HoH… the woman who promised to stay in the loft so the lunatic who is trying to hurt her can’t lay his hands on her… Why the FUCK that woman would leave without her bodyguard… without calling or even leaving a note… even without her cell phone so I couldn’t track her!”

His voice had been rising little by little until he ended on a full-out shout.   Tiffany had never seen Lukus lose his cool like this, not even that first time he lost his shit, as Derek had called it.

Tiffany licked her lips self-consciously, trying to stay calm. “You’re right to be mad for my not leaving a letter, but I promise that I was safe. I just had lunch with Aiden and since he’s a cop, he had his gun with him. I promise, I never left his side. He picked me up and dropped me off at the door and we stayed local, just going to the diner down on Lincoln.”

“I don’t fucking care if he took you to a locked down safe house. You didn’t listen to me. You left against my explicit instructions. You basically said ‘fuck you, Lukus, I don’t love you enough to obey you.’”

She forced a smile, but it only made him look like he was going to let go with another angry rant. His green eyes lit into her, burning her with layers of guilt.

“Honey, all I can say is I’m sorry I didn’t at least call so you wouldn’t worry.”

“Don’t honey me like you forgot to do the damn dishes. This is serious shit, Tiff – life and death kind of serious. I haven’t wanted to worry you with all of the dirt we’ve dug up on Davenport, but believe me when I say he’s a lowlife who preys on vulnerable women.”

Lukus released her, pushing Tiffany away as he stormed to the kitchen island to put some distance between them. She fought the urge to break into tears, in part because she was so angry with herself, but mostly because Lukus could never stay angry with her when she cried.

A long silence stretched out before Lukus spoke with a forced calmness. “Strip – naked – right where you are and then go lay over the back of the love seat with your ass laid out for your punishment.”

“Lukus… please.”

“Not one more word, little girl. And no more Lukus until further notice. I’ve clearly been too soft on you, so until I’m done lecturing you and lighting up your naughty bottom like I never have before, I’m Sir and don’t forget it.”

Tiffany’s pulse skyrocketed at his loaded words. She’d lived through several intense discipline sessions at his hands, but Lukus was a man of his word. She had no doubt that he wouldn’t be stopping today until he was sure she’d learned to never leave the loft without her guard, at least not until Jake Davenport was behind bars.

She made a last attempt at an apology. “I’m so sorry I didn’t listen, but please Sir, I promise I was safe with Aiden.”

The determined lock of his jaw as he crossed his muscular arms, pinning her with a look of raw dominance, made her pounding heart lurch. Master Lukus had arrived and as positive as she was that she was going to hate the welts he would surely leave on her ass, she was just as sure she deserved every last lash for her blatant disobedience.

Moving in slow motion, she pulled her lilac top off to display her lacy bra to her Dom. She looped her thumbs in the waistband of her yoga pants, lowering them to the floor. Lukus didn’t so much as flinch while she hesitated, but his powerful look urged her to move faster as she removed her bra and panties to stand before him naked.

She wilted until her legs felt like they’d give out soon. Tiff shuffled to the nearby lounging area, tentatively lowering her body across the back of the furniture. Lukus was there, lifting her so that her ass rose high in the air, forcing her onto her tip-toes as she leaned forward, grasping the edge of the seat cushion.

Embarrassed heat lit her face as she realized the picture she made laid out for her Head of Household (HoH). Wasting no time before launching into the punishment, Lukus landed several open palmed spanks to her left, then right butt cheek… and then stopped.

After only a half-dozen full-force spanks, he lowered his hand. “Fuck, I need to wait because I feel myself losing control.” Tiffany felt the heat of his body leave as he stepped away. “I love you too much, Tiff, to risk that.” His voice vibrated under the effort that slowing down the punishment of his lady took. “Don’t you move even your little finger, got it?”

“Yes, Sir, I’ll lay here.”

The angry footsteps of his leather boots could be heard stomping off to their bedroom, leaving her alone and ashamed. Tears she’d been holding back fell onto the fabric of the couch beneath her as she struggled to hold her legs in their splayed and lewd position.

He didn’t return for fifteen long minutes, and by the time he did, the ligaments of her long legs twitched under the strain of holding still. The touch of his hands lifting her hips up and off the couch warmed her until she almost collapsed to the floor when her cramping legs wouldn’t hold her.

Lukus caught her, lowering her body gently to the carpet where she knelt, leaning her ass back on her heels. They were both silent as Lukus wrapped her gold choker collar around her neck, latching it so the MLM pendant dangled against her skin, reminding his submissive she belonged to Master Lukus Mitchell. The warmth of his ownership wrapped around her, helping comfort her in spite of the lashing that lay ahead.

He’d never attached a leash to her collar before, so when he reached to his back pocket and returned with a black length of leather, Tiff’s face flushed red. She’d witnessed other subs on their master’s leash and wondered how it felt. The clink as he linked the clasp to the ring on her collar left her tethered to him like a treasured pet.

Only when he started walking towards the lift, leading her behind with a tug, did she start to panic.   She crawled across the floor until carpet turned to linoleum.

Surely Lukus wouldn’t lead her downstairs naked? True, The Punishment Pit was closed on Mondays, but there could be employees lingering who might see them.

As the doors closed on the elevator, Lukus answered the unspoken question by pushing the button to take them to the first level of the building.   She knew better than to hope he would stop in his private office when they exited the lift.   She couldn’t contain her distressed whimper as she reached out to hug his legs tightly. “I’m really sorry, Lukus. Please don’t do this… let’s go back upstairs.”

His only reply was to lace his fingers through her long locks, holding her tight against him. In that moment she realized she was likely headed to her first punishment center stage and could only say a prayer Lukus would be the only witness to her certain loss of control.


Lukus luxuriated in the feel of Tiffany’s long blonde hair sifting through his fingers. The silky softness calmed his nerves for the harsh punishment session that lay ahead. At least he’d let go of his fear that Jake had gotten ahold of the love of his life. The fifteen minutes he had believed her kidnapped had been like a living hell for the Dom.

He had used his time calming down in the bedroom wisely by laying out the kind of punishment plan he knew would leave a lasting impression on his future wife.   He was a reasonable man, but she needed to learn early on that he would never allow disobedience leading to her life being in danger to go unpunished. It was the most important of the rules Tiffany had agreed to follow, and he would be leaving tangible reminders on her luscious ass to ensure her safety in the future.

He lifted Tiff to her feet, allowing them both a long embrace to calm their nerves, before he pulled the leash to lead her through his office, around the punishment furniture of the backstage dungeon, and out onto the dark expanse of the stage.

The two-story curtains were open to expose the stage to anyone who might walk through. As a showman, that suited Lukus just fine, but he knew the mere possibility of a witness would further punish his novice little submissive.

He left her center stage to flip on the low lights and once lit, he pushed a heavy spanking bench from the back to center stage, just to Tiffany’s left. Her ocean blue eyes widened as he issued his stern order, “Lay yourself across the spanking bench, baby. Place your hands in the most forward grips and your legs on the widest leather pads.”

The surge of dominance coursing through is body made him feel like a letch as he watched Tiffany struggling to obey. Her tentative movements resulted in her beautiful ass being lewdly displayed; her hands and legs lower as she willingly presented herself for her punishment.

Lukus bent to lash each of her limbs securely to the heavy furniture with the leather restraints. When he buckled the wide leather strap across her back, pressing her waist tight against the bench and locking her ass into her vulnerable position, Tiffany let loose her first sob.

The sound of her crying always left him confused. Tears from a punished submissive used to leave him feeling dominant, but with Tiff he more often found himself feeling conflicting feelings of protectiveness and a foreign tendency to be lenient, something he had never considered before meeting Tiffany.

Lukus massaged her exposed bottom until she calmed, warming the skin for the lashing that was coming. “Tiffany, tell me why you’re tied down to the spanking bench about to be punished long and hard.”

Her voice was loaded with guilt as she responded. “Because I went to lunch without telling you where I was going and letting you know that I was safe.”

“Yes, and you didn’t have your cell phone with you like you’re supposed to at all times… and you didn’t take a bodyguard with you… What the hell made you think you could leave and put yourself in danger like that?”

He couldn’t see her face, but he heard the submission in her voice as she responded to his lecture. “I just didn’t think you’d like me to go to lunch with Aiden after last weekend. After all, you two threw punches at the lake.”

“Tiff, I may not like the bastard, but he’s your brother. I’m not going to block you from seeing him, even if I would like to lay him flat for putting you in danger today. But this isn’t his fault, because I’m sure you lied to him too and never let him know you weren’t supposed to leave the loft – didn’t you?”

She hesitated, “Yes, Sir… but I love him and didn’t want him to stay mad at me for choosing you over him.”

“Well, let’s see if you’re still glad you chose me after the lesson I’m about to teach you in listening to your Dom.”

Lukus left her alone to think about what he’d said as he went to the punishment supply cabinet that lined the wall of the on-stage dungeon. He picked a wide leather paddle and a severe loopy Johnny to deliver his message.

He settled into the punishment scene like the pro that he was, letting the first crack of the leather paddle fall against her white skin.   It left a satisfyingly red splotch in its wake and a long groan erupted from his submissive fiancé. Lukus knew better than to short-change today’s lesson. He’d be damned if Tiffany would leave this stage with any ambiguity on how he felt about her behavior today.

The thick leather fell again and again across her ass until she was crying out, jerking in an attempt to loosen her restraints. When he lowered his aim to the bottom of her butt where it met her thighs, Tiffany went wild, begging him to stop through her sobs.

Lukus never had trouble powering through a punishment before falling in love. But in just the few true discipline sessions he’d delivered to his lovely fiancé, he learned punishing someone he’d given his heart to hurt him almost as much as it did her – almost.

When he thought she was getting closer to learning her lesson, he threw the leather to the floor, moving to caress Tiffany’s lower back to comfort her, although he refused to provide relief to the lesson on her burning globes… yet.

Despite her obvious pain, he loved to see her labia glistening wet with her sexual excitement. He lightly dragged his fingers through her lower lips, eliciting a long groan of desire as he lubricated his fingers liberally.   She squeaked when he lifted higher, pressing two lubed fingers into her puckered rosebud.   “Oh God, Lukus… what are you doing?”

“I’m taking liberties with my naughty sub’s little bottom and you need to just relax and enjoy it, because this is just an intermission. You have one more layer of punishment coming before we’re done here.”

“Oh lord, I can’t take any more, Sir.”

“Oh baby, I’ll decide when you’ve learned your lesson and we won’t stop until then. Let’s get this finished so we can move on to more fun activities.”

Lukus withdrew his fingers reluctantly, leaning to grab the most painful punishment device he’d used on Tiffany to date. He didn’t plan to deliver a lot of strikes, but he would be using the loopy Johnny only when he had a particularly important lesson for Tiffany to learn.

She couldn’t see the small handled device with three long loops of braided leather that were about to light into her already punished ass. Lukus steeled himself for the scream that was about to come and lay the lick across the center of her bottom. Her cry was delayed, almost as if she’d lost her breath from the sudden laceration the wicked device delivered. When it came it almost leveled him.

He recovered enough to continue his lecture. “That’s one lash, Tiffany. You’ll receive six today and after each, you’ll promise to never leave the loft without my knowledge until Jake Davenport is in jail. Is that understood, young lady?”

“Oh God, please Lukus no more. I promise I won’t leave the loft ever again if you’ll just stop.”

“I’ll accept that for your first promise, but I’ll finish the last five.”

His arm felt as heavy as lead as he swung the light implement through the air to connect a little lower. Her pained screams lit into his heart, but he steeled himself to be not only her Dom, but more importantly her HoH. They agreed to the rules and consequences together and he was damn well determined to live up to his end of the deal.

It took five long minutes to deliver the five remaining lashes. He had to allow Tiffany time to calm enough to speak her languished apologies after each strike.

When the punishment ended, he rushed to release the leather restraints, letting Tiffany slowly bring movement into her limbs before lifting her up into his arms and carrying her lovingly towards the lift. Her sobs had lessoned to light cries, and he felt relief when she hugged him close, laying her lips against his neck to kiss him. It was a little gesture that meant so much.

The lift doors had just closed on their trip upstairs when he brushed his lips lightly against her ear with a vulnerable whisper. “So, are you still happy you picked living with me over your brother, baby?”

She turned her tear-stained face to look into his eyes. Her guilt was gone and in its place was the most beautiful look of love. “I’ll never regret loving you, Lukus. I may go down and burn whatever the hell piece of leather that was you just used to light up my ass, but I’ll love you regardless.”

Lukus broke out in laughter. “Oh Tiff, even after living through a Lukus Mitchell punishment, I just love that you’re still full of your signature sass.”

They let their lips do the rest of the talking.


Passion Series Book One

Passion Series Book One

Wowzer, that one took a lot out of me.  Sure hope you enjoyed a little glimpse into what Lukus and Tiffany are up to these days between Having it All and Protecting it All when the guys finally deal with one Jake Davenport.  If you haven’t given The Passion Series a read yet, I would very much appreciate you giving it a shot. Book one, Wanting it All,  is on sale for only $.99.

Wanting it All | Amazon |  Blushing

Securing it All | Amazon | B&N | Blushing

Having it All | Amazon | B&N | Blushing



Leave me a comment to know what you thought and to also be entered in the random drawing at the end of the month for a $10 Amazon gift card.  Come back tomorrow for more fun from the other couple in our Kinky Quartet, Brianna and Markus.

M= Married to a Masochist

Don’t forget to check out some of these other talented authors!

Who is worried about Traci? #WIPITUP #CorbinsBend


So I heard from more than one of you who read Life’s Unexpected Gifts that you were worried about what was going to happen to Traci, Troy’s sister.  I did kind of leave her hanging at the end of last season’s book, but I wanted to make sure Traci got her own story in season three.  Psychology of Submission will be released on June 4th.  I thought it would be fun to share the opening scene of the book with you this week.  It is a nice long excerpt chock full of some of your favorite Corbin’s Bend residents.  Check it out and let me know what you think!


Excerpt from Psychology of Submission

“Oh my fucking God! This cheesecake is to die for!”

The words were still hanging in the air when the crack of a large hand connecting with a bikini-clad bottom could be heard from across the pool. Hallie’s surprised squeal was drowned out by the fits of laughter from the dozen or so other couples already gathered for the Corbin’s Bend annual Summer’s Here picnic.

“Troy! I can’t believe you just did that!”

“Hallie, I can’t believe you continue to talk like a truck driver.”

Traci’s heart physically contracted with love as she watched her brother and new sister- in-law bantering playfully. Seeing Troy happily married was bittersweet for her. She honestly couldn’t be happier for Troy and Hallie. Still, it was ironic that the siblings had gone years living far apart while Troy had been deployed across the globe, yet now that they lived a few blocks from each other, Traci had never felt more alone.

The time since her brother’s wedding had brought her a much-loved sister-in-law. In fact, Hallie was more than her new sister; she was her close friend. But in watching the couple embrace across the pool, Traci was keenly reminded that she was no longer the most important person in her brother’s life.

Correction. I am no longer the most important person in anyone’s life.

Traci tried to shake herself out of her funk. She despised feeling sorry for herself, and refused to allow feelings of jealously to come between her and the two people she loved most in the world. Yet, the couple wasn’t helping.

The newlyweds had just returned from their honeymoon two weeks earlier and were still in that sickly-sweet romantic mode where they were rarely more than a few feet from each other. They’d come to dinner at Traci’s the night before and had even had to excuse themselves to go to the guest bedroom. Troy had made it sound like it was to punish Hallie for her continued potty- mouth, but Traci was no fool. The walls in her Corbin’s Bend home were not thick enough to camouflage the sounds of sex. Passionate… hot… naughty… sex.

At least they’d had the decency to blush when they’d returned to the kitchen twenty minutes later with Hallie’s hair sex-mussed and Troy’s shirt untucked. Just because Traci’s love life was non-existent didn’t mean the people around her needed to suffer the same affliction.

Troy and Hallie returned to the long picnic table where Traci had been sitting, observing. They plopped down next to their sister. Zach and Erin Cunningham tagged along to sit across the table. Traci had gotten to know the married couple pretty well since they served as Troy and Hallie’s mentors. She’d begun to count them among her close friends these days.

“I don’t know what I’m gonna to do with you, Hallie. I think your cursing is getting worse, not better.”

Zachary cut in before Hallie could reply. “What punishments have you established to help her stop?”

Traci hid her smile as she listened to a conversation that outside of Corbin’s Bend would seem barbaric. Here, it’s just another Saturday afternoon.

“I always give her a crack to the bottom right away to let her know I noticed and didn’t let it pass, but I don’t think it’s enough.”

“It’s not, if you’re trying to get her to stop. One swat isn’t enough of a deterrent, is it, Erin?”

Erin’s blush told Traci she wasn’t comfortable with the topic. “No, sir, and I’d like to thank you for pointing that out in front of our friends.”

Zach reached to hold his wife’s hand while sharing their experience. “Erin’s language has never been too bad, but she would let a 4-letter bomb slip at times. I didn’t really care until Avery was a toddler and started repeating the words she learned from her mommy. I’ll never forget how embarrassed I was when Avery called my mother a ‘damn busy-body.’ That was the night Erin got her first real punishment for her language choices. It only took a few intense sessions and the problem was solved, wasn’t it, baby?”

“It felt like more than a few to me, thank-you-very-much.”

“Hey, it worked, didn’t it?”


Hallie had been listening silently, her eyes growing larger by the minute. She glanced sideways at Traci as if to look for moral support. Traci had to chuckle. “Don’t look at me. I still can’t believe Adam didn’t set you straight when you lived with them.”

“Some sister you are. I thought you’d back me up that there are way worse things than having a colorful vocabulary.”

They were joined by several new couples at the table next to them. Dr. Marcus Devon must have been close enough to catch their earlier conversation when he weighed in. “Troy, I’d suggest using those bars of soap I gave you as part of your wedding present. Those work wonders for naughty language slips.”

Before Troy could respond, the next alpha male to join the group, Vance Foster, shared his own opinion on how Troy should handle this particular problem. “A paddle. That’s all you need. One nice, hard, wooden paddle. I guarantee it does wonders for helping make behavior changes, wouldn’t you say, Ettie?”

The pretty young woman with the studious glasses waited until she’d gingerly lowered herself to the hard wooden bench, shifting to try to find a comfortable position, before answering. “You seem to think the wooden paddle is the answer for everything.”

Vance grinned at her. “It helped us arrive here on time today, didn’t it?”

“Yes, sir, although now the paper will be released late since you didn’t let me finish the story I was working on.”

“Somehow, I think your subscribers will understand. They’d rather have the pleasure of your company here at the picnic. Not to mention, you wouldn’t want to release the next edition without a report of how today’s festivities went.”

“Of course not. Honestly, I’m an article or two short this week. I hope something really juicy happens today so I have a good story to add this week.”

Traci smiled across at Ettie. Traci read Ettie’s paper faithfully, in part to enjoy the author’s creative exaggerations of the demise of several of the prominent town figures. More importantly, Traci loved to read the erotic serial stories she printed at the end of each edition. The current tale about a Dom cowboy who spanked his naughty horse trainer was one of Ettie’s hottest stories to date.

Traci must have zoned out thinking of hot cowboys because she was suddenly aware that all eyes had turned to her, waiting expectantly. She blushed under everyone’s scrutiny. “I’m sorry. I think I missed something.”

Ettie responded, her voice high pitched with excitement. “Would you really give me an interview? That would be so awesome.”

Traci had a bad feeling. “Why would you want to interview me?”

Ettie sighed, exasperated. “Chicago. The conference. Weren’t you listening just now when Troy told us about your big conference coming up this week? How impressive that you’re going to deliver one of the keynote speeches! What’s your topic?”

A wave of dread washed over Traci. She’d been doing her best to push down her rising panic over the last few weeks, but the mere mention of the conference she dreaded had her stomach churning. She stumbled through her answer.

“Well… honestly, I’m not sure… I’ve been reconsidering and…” She hated the quaver in her voice. Her eyes connected with Troy’s and she saw concern etched on his face. Traci took a cleansing breath before answering more calmly. “There really isn’t a story here, Ettie. I’ve decided I’m not going to go this year.”

Troy’s brown eyes sparked with anger. The siblings were caught in a stare-down before Troy abruptly stood. “Trace, I’d like to speak with you privately, please.” He was already stepping away from the picnic table, his hand reaching for her own.

“I don’t think so. We just got our food.”

“Traci. Now, please.” It was his HoH voice.

Hallie sent her sister-in-law a supportive smile, although Traci suspected the new bride was relieved to have the conversation swing away from her own potty mouth. Recognizing the firm set of Troy’s jaw, Traci knew it was futile to argue.


Traci Jackson has been a therapist in Corbin’s Bend for several years. She’s helped many residents navigate their own D/s and DD relationships, but she hasn’t found her own HoH. Through her patients, she’s been researching and writing about the dynamics of dominance and submission in relationships for years. She loves her field, but she hates attending professional conventions where she’s treated like her specialty isn’t valid.

Sean Campbell is juggling raising his teenage daughter alone in Chicago while running a large convention hotel. When the annual psychologist convention comes to town, he literally bumps into the most beautiful and intelligent woman he’s met in a long time. He gets the surprise of his life when he finds out her specialty is D/s with an emphasis on corporal punishment.

They may find sparks from the minute they meet, but Traci and Sean have more than just the long distance between Chicago and Corbin’s Bend separating them. Sean has never heard of domestic discipline before. Will Traci pack up and leave Corbin’s Bend to be with the man she’s falling in love with, even if he can never be her true HoH?

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