Read Lustfully Ever After Online

Authors: Kristina Wright

Lustfully Ever After

BOOK: Lustfully Ever After
Table of Contents
Sylvia Day
he Disney Company made sure we all grew up with fairy tales. Most girls grow up with a favorite Disney princess or two and a stack of video cassettes or DVDs (depending on the era) of their favorite princesses’ stories. It’s become a part of girlhood to dream of Prince Charming and the miracle he’s supposed to bring to his true love’s life, staging grand rescues from evil stepmothers and their curses and spiriting his mate away to his castle to never again have a care in the world.
I was twelve when my notion of Prince Charming changed. That was when my mother handed me a romance novel featuring a virile, ultra-alpha sheik and the woman he desires to the point of obsession. Looking back now, with our modern feminist sensibilities, we both admit the book is a “bodice ripper,” but at the time it was powerful, sexy stuff. Prince Charming wasn’t rescuing the heroine; he was her antagonist, her kidnapper, her beast to tame while he exposed her to her own potent sensual nature (and fell helpless to it himself).
Many years later I discovered erotic romance via the futuristic
novellas of Liz Maverick and Angela Knight.
Now this,
I thought,
is my kind of reading
. Stories in which sex was as integral to the characters as breathing, the means through which they most deeply communicated with each other. Kick-ass men and women who had well-rounded lives all by themselves, they needed rescuing in only the most personal and profound ways; the rest they had covered on their own. For me, that’s romance.
Where are the fairy tales for readers like me?
Once upon a time, fairy tales were darker, grittier, and sexier. Rapunzel let down her hair and lifted her skirts. Sleeping Beauty wasn’t awakened by a mere kiss. Little Red Riding Hood is an allegory for the wolfish, predatory qualities of men. Fairy tales were written for adults, then later adapted to be suitable for children. They were softened and sweetened, removing most of the spice.
Somewhere along the way we’ve come to believe that the magical and fantastical are for kids. To prove maturity, one is expected to cast off belief in the imaginary, but adults need fairy tales, too. We brave the dangerous forest of commuting every weekday, fighting off the trolls and goblins in our lives, outwitting the witches and villainous overlords we work alongside, and trying not to strangle the stockbrokers who manage our golden nest eggs.
I’ve outgrown the softened and sweetened fantasies of childhood. The stories I crave are raw, laced with dark magic and unfettered passions. Adult fairy tales should be gritty yet illusionary, edgy yet sinuous, violent yet dreamy. They should take what is recognizable in us to the farthest degree, making it marvelous and terrifying, fascinating and titillating.
I still have a soft spot for Prince Charming, but I prefer him as a reward for the prince or princess who slays his or her own dragons. He should carry a bit of the beast inside him and more
than a little wickedness. He should bring his adventurous spirit into the bedroom, and he should be respectful of the value and independence of his true love. But that’s
fairy tale. For others, tales may include princes or princesses who master them, one (or a few) who save them from themselves or exposes a hidden beauty, like the swan from the ugly duckling.
The beauty of
Lustfully Ever After
is its celebration of the individual fairy tales in us all. I relished taking the ride, seeing how fluid the journey can be and how unique each creator’s vision was of something known and familiar. As a writer, it’s natural to say I’ll write what I wish was out there for me to read, but then I would be trapped by the limits of my own imagination. Within the pages of this collection, I was invited to join in the fantasies of others, which took me in directions I would never have thought to go, wrapped within the enchantment of fairy tales and folklore, and deliciously flavored with sex and love.
Here are the fairy tales for grown-ups. Enjoy!
hen I edited my first collection of erotic fairy tales,
Fairy Tale Lust,
and received an overwhelming number of submissions from authors—and an enthusiastic response from readers and reviewers—I knew I would be editing another fairy tale collection soon. There were just too many fairy tales in need of retelling—tales that were ripe for reinterpretation. And so, the idea for
Lustfully Ever After
was born, sitting on a back burner in my imagination while I wrote other stories and edited other books. But the excitement about another fairy tale collection wouldn’t wait long and before I knew it I found myself pitching the idea to my publisher. Happily (ever after), they were as enthusiastic about it as I was—as were the authors when I put out my call for submissions. Fairy tales, it seems, are such a part of our culture and imagination that we long for more.
While there are similarities between
Fairy Tale Lust
Lustfully Ever After
, there are also notable differences.
Fairy Tale Lust
was a collection of original and classic fairy tales
written as erotica and erotic romance; the stories ranged from light and playful to eerie and intense. For
Lustfully Ever After
, I knew I wanted only reinterpretations of the classics and that I wanted them to lean more toward the dark tones of the originals. The stories themselves, while steeped in the history and tone of the classics, are as different in
Lustfully Ever After
as they were in
Fairy Tale Lust
Some of the stories in
Lustfully Ever After
are the tales that you know by heart but likely never dreamed of quite this way. Others, while still based on classic stories, will be less familiar but I hope just as entertaining. Among the stories you will recognize immediately are Anya Richards’s “Rosa Redford,” a delicious reinterpretation of “Snow White and Rose Red,” and Lisabet Sarai’s reimagined Rapunzel in “Shorn.” Emerald gives us a corporate “Beauty and the Beast” in “The Beast Within,” while Shanna Germain shows sympathy for—and the passionate, Sapphic side of—Snow White’s evil stepmother in “Mirror, Mirror.”
Some less easily recognized tales include Charlotte Stein’s “You,” an imaginative retelling of “The Three Billy Goats Gruff,” and Michael M. Jones’s retelling of the somewhat obscure “The Boots of Buffalo Leather” in his adventurous and sexy “The Long Night of Tanya McCray.” Andrea Dale delivers a contemporary version of “The Steadfast Tin Soldier” in her poignantly erotic “Steadfast,” Anna Meadows has written “Matches,” a passionate (and happier) blend of “The Little Match Girl” and Mexican folklore, and Sacchi Green dreams of a different kind of pussycat in “Kit in Boots.”
Michelle Augello-Page has penned a romantically charged BDSM version of “Little Red Riding Hood” in her tale “Wolf Moon,” while Jeanette Grey tackles “Hansel and Gretel” (or at least Gretel’s story) in “Gretel’s Lament.” Contrary to the title,
Lynn Townsend’s “Garden Variety” is no typical “Jack and the Beanstalk” tale, nor is Evan Mora’s “Real Boy” anything you’ve ever imagined about “Pinocchio.” Other classic fairy tales make appearances, including “Twelve Dancing Princesses” in Kristina Lloyd’s erotic threesome fairy tale “The Last Dance” and “The Princess and the Pea” in Donna George Storey’s creative “Sensitive Artist.” My own story, “A Sea Change,” is “The Little Mermaid” revisited in reverse, and A.D.R. Forte’s “Name” is an ambitious and passionate retelling of one of my favorite fairy tales, “Rumpelstiltskin.”
The stories here were chosen for being original, erotic interpretations while maintaining the fairy-tale elements and literary integrity of the original tales. I was seeking as much variety as possible in these stories—not wanting to duplicate the table of contents of
Fairy Tale Lust
. The few classic tales that appear in both collections are as different from each other as they are from the original stories. I think that says as much about the talented authors’ imaginations as it does about the diverse appeal of fairy tales.
Fairy Tale Lust
, every story in
Lustfully Ever After
has a romantic relationship and a “happily ever after” or “happy for now” ending. So relax, dear reader, and curl up with this delightful collection of fairy tales that will lead you down a magical path into forbidden romance and erotic love. I promise you won’t need those bread crumbs to find your way home—for home is where the heart is, and the authors of
Lustfully Ever After
know your heart’s most wicked and secret desires.
Kristina Wright
The dark woods of Virginia
Anya Richards
’m not hungry.” He held out his hands, as though showing her those strong, hairy fingers would be proof enough. “I’ve already…supped. All I want is companionship. The world is such a cold place.”
Behind him the snow fell in thick flakes, drifting down like feathers to settle on his fur-covered head and shoulders, clinging to the long eyelashes. Dark, all-too-human eyes glowed with silent entreaty from the beastly face. But despite his horrifying appearance, Rosa removed the chain and let him in.
As he slowly entered, his dark gaze swept over the secondhand furniture and old stage props, the detritus of their theatre jobs and myriad potted plants. What he thought about any of it, the marks of their occupations and personalities, she couldn’t tell. He expressed no opinion, simply prowled around the edge of the living room, looking and sniffing at everything before plunking down on the couch.
“What’s going on?”
Blanche came down the passage rubbing her eyes, the hem of her short nightie swinging around her thighs. His gaze sharpened. Blanche gasped, seeing the hairy man-thing.
“I just wanted some company.”
Once more loneliness echoed in his voice, and, when Rosa glanced at Blanche, her friend’s mouth pursed into a winsome pout. A spark of annoyance fired in her belly. Why did Blanche always have to be so cute, even with her pale, straight hair all over the place and sleep lines on her face?
“No problem.” Blanche dropped onto the couch too, folding her long, slim legs up under her ass. “Company is always a good thing, right Rosa?”
Well, there was company and then there was company, and Rosa wasn’t sure what to make of the present kind.
“Would you care for a drink?” She shifted from one foot to the other, asking more out of the need to say something rather than politeness.
“What do you have?” He was still casing the joint, so to speak, but his eyes now went from her to Blanche and back again.
She glanced at the cabinet, trying to remember what was left. “Vodka, gin, maybe scotch. We killed the tequila last night though.”
He laughed, and the deep, rich chuckle, the strong, sharp teeth made every hair on her body stand on end. “Just as well. Tequila makes me want to live
la vida loca
. You don’t want to see that.”
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