Welcome to H in the A-Z Spanking Challenge.
The trouble with history is it’s vast. Eras are supposed to split up history into manageable chunks, but as a writer, they often seem either too restrictive or too expansive. I’ve written a few historical novels.
Alice and the Colonel (currently available for free with Stormy Night’s newsletter) is a Regency romance and tells of a young woman’s sexual awakening. The Regency period ‘officially’ lasted ten years from 1820 to 1830. Unofficially it can be pretty much cover any time before Queen Vic hit the throne back to Georgie the Third (the mad one). I’m writing another Regency at the moment and I’m a little vague about the dates, but probably 1815 ish. Who cares, as long as they take off their breeches and bloomers at some point.
Another one I wrote – Driven Wild – is set in Liverpool during the swinging sixties when women’s emancipation from traditional roles really took off. Leah, whom I might post about on letter L day, falls for her Maltese chauffeur. Now the 1960s for some, including myself, who can remember my mother wearing miniskirts, is not really history, but for younger readers, it probably isn’t contemporary either. It’s a down between the cracks of somewhere, neither past or present. Who cares, the miniskirt goes up and the panties come down pretty much the same way.
In Enemy Hands is set during the English Civil War, around 1645. The conflict was similar to the American Civil War and split apart families and regions. The best way to remember who fought whom, is Cavalier=long hair, Roundheads=short hair. The 16th and 17th centuries seem to be largely absent in historical romances, so if you want a break from Regency and Medieval, try a bit in the middle. (Although, to be honest, 16th century is still pretty medieval – they burnt witches, ate with their fingers and fought with sharp pointy swords). When it came to spanking, the girls were just as naughty and the men were very much in charge.
My latest release is Victorian – Viola’s Heart Strings. Queen Victoria sat on the throne for a hefty time and my book is set towards the end of her reign when laws had been changed to give women more rights, especially in marriage, like she’s no longer his chattel and can own property. However, my hero, Sir Anton Valise, is a bit old fashioned. His wife is expected to obey him and in return he wishes her to be his loyal, submissive wife. Naturally, he has ideas what to do if she has trouble towing the line.
Viola has arrived at Sir Anton’s home and he’s running through his expectations…
Standing over her, he tipped her head up with a finger under her chin. “Quite beautiful, Viola. Do you know what I expect from you at all times?”
She treasured his compliment, needing the simple words of encouragement to tame her thrumming heart. How nervous should a husband make his wife, especially when he asked questions of her? “I can guess. I am to be a wife who will cause you no trouble and provide good company.”
He nodded, slipping his finger away. “I have a few requirements above those of your marriage vows.” He circled her before returning to face her upturned face.
“Requirements?” she stuttered and hunkered down on her bottom, wondering whether he meant of her body or of her mind.
“Don’t worry, they’re a mere extension of your own natural behaviours. I would first ask you not to question my authority, especially in the company of others. If you feel obliged to speak, then think carefully before doing so. Hasty words, in hindsight, are often scrutinised with regret.”
She swallowed and nodded. True, she had uttered upon occasions inappropriate speech, and unfortunately, she didn’t consider herself blessed with the innate ability of verbal censorship. Sometimes, her tongue ran a little too loose. “I shall endeavour not to displease you with unnecessary complaints.”
He walked over to the fireplace, fingering the mantelpiece before turning to address her again. “I would have your pleasure as my own. It’s not a selfish request. I merely wish to ensure I give you my best and that you do not succumb to wicked temptations. The world is full of unsavoury people who will pray upon a wealthy woman. The more you see me as your paramount, the less these distractions will shape your thoughts.”
Viola found his speech confusing, as if he expected her to be unfaithful or seeking pleasure with others. “I don’t think I will be… distracted.”
“Good.” He pursed his lips. “In this room, therefore, you will show your dedication to my service by baring your flesh under you dressing gown. It will prepare you.”
For what? Her skin tingled. The response of her body quite at odds with her own perplexed mind. Why did he elicit such strong desires in her loins by speaking of wifely duties?
After a whirlwind courtship in Monaco, innocent Viola falls in love and marries enigmatic Sir Anton Valise. Following their honeymoon in France, she begins a new life at his estate in Dorset, England. Anton’s need for passionate, dominant love-making is haunted by memories of his first wife, Margot, and he fears his new wife will falter in her love for him if she does not remain obedient. To keep her loyal, the baronet introduces rules to aid Viola’s submission but suppresses his desire to spank her when she errs.
With nobody to befriend or trust, the lonely Viola overhears the hushed conversations of the servants discussing the beautiful Margot, whom died in mysterious circumstances, and she discovers secret rooms in the house, which unearth a side of Anton she had not imagined.
Viola fears Anton will never cease loving Margot and she is determined to keep him happy. Whenever Anton dominates her in the bedroom, she fantasizes about his wish to spank her, and it rouses her craving to submit to increasingly erotic sex until eventually, she commits an error of judgment and Anton is forced to impose his discipline upon her.
With tension between the couple rising, Anton and Viola’s relationship reaches a crisis point leading to Viola discovering a past filled with lies and pretences, above and below stairs.
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