Cosmic Cabaret: Where Hearts Collide in the Greatest Show in Space
Join us aboard Blue Star Line’s crown jewel, the LS Quantum. Thirteen USA Today, Amazon best-selling, award-winning speculative fiction romance authors deliver their twists on tales set in the dance halls and clubs of this luxury starship as it travels through space and time. Follow princes, sultans, rock stars, scientists, cirque artists, and dancers as they solve murders, track thieves, fight bullies, plan heists and fall in love.
Cover to cover Cosmic Cabaret is delicious sci-fi romance.
Thirteen authors. Thirteen novellas. Here's a taste from several stories.
“Him. Him. Always him. Why couldn’t Astra just get away from the heart-thumping creature, Doctor Zane Jones?”
Stars Shining Bright Above by Jayne Fury
“I’m here for you, whatever you need.” “Stay with me,” she whispered. He leaned down and brought her fingers to his lips, brushing them with a gentle kiss. “Nothing would please me more.”
Star-Studded Love by Rosalie Redd
“Well you see, it’s a funny story involving twins, a capybara, and a whole heap of buttercream.”
A Dance of Fallen Stars by Kat Vancil
“Feckin’ man! Why did someone so exasperatin’ have to be built like a god? Standin’ there in his underpants. All his glory on display except for his private bits, which weren’t exactly hidden by that layer of cloth.”
Educated by the Master by Cailin Briste
“The bad boy she had known had grown into a predator that oozed sex.”
Vordol’s Vow by Dena Garson
“Here’s to the sunrise.” He smiled, lifting his glass in a toast. Her eyes flared wide, the clear clink of the pure crystal reverberating through the silence. “Sunrise? Why are we toasting to that?” He watched hungrily as she sipped on the pleasant dessert wine. He tossed back the drink in one gulp. “Because that’s the next time I plan on letting you out of my sight.”
Midnight at Andromeda’s by Tessa McFionn
Excerpt from Educated by the Master, Cailin Briste's story in Cosmic Cabaret.
She’s new to kink. He’s a BDSM Master with eighteen days to educate her.
Trey Johannsen’s preference is to stick to managing a private BDSM club on Beta Tau. It’s dark. It's sexy. The cries of pleasure, the thud of a flogger, and the mingled scents of arousal and fear are evidence he’s damn good at it.
So, when his boss insists Trey’s perfect for assisting a new hire to develop a BDSM cabaret, Trey is nonplussed. How the hell do you make burlesque accurate? Then he meets her, and instant attraction has him imagining peeling her clothes off, tying her to a bed, and sexually dominating her until she can take no more.READ MORE
When Patsy O’Shaughnessy first lays eyes on BDSM master Trey Johannsen everything about him impresses her. Providing him a personal tour of the on stage and behind-the-scenes workings of the Cosmic Cabaret isn’t a problem. Withstanding the sheer sexiness of the ultra-masculine hunk while he educates her about BDSM? That’s going to take some doing.
Not that she plans to suggest hands-on training. No, the move from stage manager at the Cosmic Cabaret to creative director for a new venue is something she can’t blow. But if Trey Johannsen thinks experience is the best teacher, who is she to disagree?
It hadn’t occurred to Trey that LS Quantum and Beta Tau were two sides of the same coin. Sure, LS Quantum was a spaceship, and Beta Tau was a planet. But he’d read the LS Quantum’s brochures, and in every other respect they were the same large, climate-controlled settings designed to provide trendsetting pleasure venues to paying customers and entertainment for all ages and palates, including his own kinky tastes.
The insight came when a middle-aged woman eased alongside him, brushing her shoulder against his and asking if he was headed to the LS Quantum and if so, where his cabin was located on the ship. Her skimpy halter, skintight slacks, and the bright pink hair she was sporting did nothing to enhance her appeal. This was Beta Tau all over. The glare he aimed at her didn’t force her to step back. Good gods! I’d be at Quantum’s shuttle service gate if Patsy O’Shaughnessy hadn’t insisted on meeting me here. He scanned the customers of the bland space station lounge. No. Still on my own.
An expert at fending off tourists on Beta Tau, he’d offer to take them to the club, tie them up, and use a bullwhip on them. Most scurried away. He handed anyone who accepted his proposition over to staff at the club. Bondage was part of his personal kink, but he preferred to use a flogger. The whip was the specialty of the Whip Hand’s owner, Randolph Meryon, Trey’s boss.
The neon-haired tourist ran a finger down his upper arm. “Maybe we could get together on board? I’ve heard bald men are really good in bed.”
When he dropped his gaze to where she’d touched him, the woman tittered. Eyes narrowed, he leveled his full focus on her. “Sure. If you’re into knife play, I might be able accommodate you. I’d have to ask my girlfriend. She’s the one who does the cutting.” He followed his words with a feral grin.
The tourist turned pale. “No thanks.” She scuttled back to her friends who’d been watching the exchange. Wide-eyed, they left the lounge, several looking back over their shoulders to get another glance at him.
With a grimace, he settled in to wait. This wasn’t a vacation, and he wasn’t a tourist. Nor was he on his way to Quantum, away from his normal haunts on Beta Tau, to indulge in BDSM. No, he had undertaken this two-week-long trek in his capacity as the Whip Hand’s private club manager. Rand had hired a young woman to open and run a new venue on Beta Tau based on the Cosmic Cabaret, one of the famous attractions on LS Quantum. After getting firsthand experience of the cabaret’s shows, Trey was to provide his BDSM expertise to tailor O’Shaughnessy’s plans.
Crazy idea. At least I didn’t have to travel economy class and spend my nights in a sleep tube. Rand had paid for a cabin that, although small, had allowed Trey to escape most human interaction for the two weeks he’d been aboard the space liner, sleeping, reading, meditating, and sleeping some more. Perhaps his reintroduction into the hum and clatter of humanity after his break had him on edge.
No perhaps about it. He was ready to bellow at the entire spaceport to shut up. Life would be so much better if half the population were fitted with ball gags.
Here he was, per Ms. O’Shaughnessy’s request, and she was not to be found. He eyeballed the entrance, considering whether he should head over to the gate to wait for his shuttle, when a shock of color came flying into the lounge. The slender woman, dressed in a bright, grass-green sleeveless blouse and short skirt, skidded to a halt. Splashed across her face was a wide grin as brilliant as the lime green that tipped the ends of her copper hair. She was looking straight at him. This must be Patsy O’Shaughnessy. With a wave she headed for him.
“Hi. Sorry I’m late. Ya wouldn’t believe the crush of folks leavin’ Quantum today. I’m Patsy. Trey Johansson. Right? Mr. Meryon sent your picture, so I recognized ya. Although I don’t expect there’s many men that look quite like ya.”
When she paused for a breath, Trey inserted a few words into her verbal onslaught. “Yes. I am.”
“I’m excited to meet ya. And to work with ya. I have so many plans I can’t wait to share. Our shuttle back to Q—that’s LS Quantum for short—boards in about fifteen minutes. We have time for a quick drink if ya’d like, or we could head to the gate. I could use a drink. Dashin’ around.” She waved her hand in the air. “I’m so thirsty now. I’m gettin’ an orange fizzy. What would ya like?”
Pleasant expression on her face, Patsy waited for a response.
“Oh, uh. Sure, I’ll have what you’re having.”
“Be right back.” She twirled and headed toward the bar.
Wow. That accent sounded Irish. And not Tallavan faux Irish. Light complexion, freckles, copper hair, wearing green…stereotype, sure, but damn, if she wasn’t Irish, he’d eat a whole pan of fried blood pudding. Something he hadn’t tasted in a long time. Fried eggs, tomatoes, white-and-black pudding. A full Irish breakfast like his mother made better than any other cook on Tallav. He missed his folks and his mother’s cooking, but Tallav would never be his home. Even if he’d been a member of the aristocracy, he would have left the Tallavan matriarchy in the dust as he had the moment he was of age.
“Here ya go.” Patsy handed him a large disposable cup and took a long drink from her own. “Ah. That was what I needed. I had cobwebs in my throat.”
Trey tipped his cup back and swallowed three gulps of the sweet orange liquid and remembered why he never drank fizzies. The carbonation bubbled up his nose. He pinched his nostrils, squinched his eyes shut, and waited for the burn to abate.
“Got fizz up your nose, did ya? Ya should drink more slowly if ya can’t handle the sparkly. I never have a problem. My whole system’s plumbed with synthsteel.”
Was this slip of a girl offering him advice as though he were some— “My delicate feckin’ nose thanks ya for the interest in its well-bein’.”
With blue eyes aglow, she leaned toward him. “Think nothin’ of it. An féidir leat labhairt le haon Gealic chun dul leis sin blas na hÉireann?”
Sarcasm was lost on Patsy O’Shaughnessy. “It’s not an Irish accent. I’m from Tallav, which was infected with a fanatic love of all things from the Emerald Isle when the planet was founded. I never had the time to learn Gaelic, but many Tallavans do.”
“Standard it is then. We have somethin’ in common. I’m proper Irish. Erin go Bragh. ‘Tis a pity ya don’t speak Gaelic. I don't get to speak it this far from home. Oh, goodness. We need to head over to the gate. Our shuttle will be boardin’ soon.”
On the way out of the lounge, Trey dumped his fizzie in the trash receptacle. Patsy was ahead of him by a couple of strides, so he had a full view of the subtle twitch her ass made while she walked. Nice. From her employment records he had gleaned that she was thirty years old, although she looked younger. That fell within his range, five years either side of his own age, for women he would date. But Patsy O’Shaughnessy was off-limits despite her engaging effervescence. This was a business relationship. For the next two-and-a-half weeks, they’d be working together. Besides, whether she’d kissed the Blarney Stone or not, the woman could talk. By the end of a day spent with her, he’d need to escape to his own room. Plus he didn’t do vanilla. Patsy wasn’t bland, but neither did she scream kinky despite her association with Cosmic Cabaret and now Randolph and the Whip Hand.
Still, he could look. He’d never been drawn to big-busted women, but a tight bottom was a delight to behold. And touch. Squeeze. Slap. He heaved a sigh. Too bad. He’d already plastered a don’t-touch sign across her miniskirted bum.
Copyright © 2017 Cailin BristeCOLLAPSE