Friday, June 30, 2023

Out today! New paranormal romance from Seelie Kay – @SeelieKay #Lawyers #Angels #Interview

In the Midst of Angels cover

Hello, Seelie! I’m delighted to have you back at Beyond Romance. Let me be the first to congratulate you on your new book.

Thanks, Lisabet. I’m pretty excited about this title, which is a bit of a departure for me.

So, why do you write romance?

It began as a way to relieve the stress of a career as a lawyer/journalist and dealing with MS “on the side.” Writing has always been my outlet and the best way to break away from reality for a bit was to write romance. Plus, I love happy endings. I get rather emotional (yes, I’m a crier) but it’s a wonderful release.

Do you prefer a certain type of romantic hero?

I adore smart, dashing gentlemen who aren’t afraid to live on the edge. They can be a lawyer, a bad boy, a billionaire, a prince, or a secret agent. That hint of danger just hooks me! However, they have to be paired with strong, independent women who aren’t afraid to fight for what they want, even love. And brains over brawn, every time!

Why did you write In the Midst of Angels?

For several reasons. When my father died during the pandemic (not from COVID), I really struggled with the idea that I could never ever seek his advice again. He lived in another city and was kept in a tight “bubble,” so neither my son or I could visit. My mother had died 15 years prior and I regularly had dreams in which we had some pretty serious discussions about love and romance. That had me thinking about what type of advice they would give my son about relationships and finding the right partner. I also wondered how they would react to the relationship style of Millennials. Somedays, I feel like all of the advanced technology they use has killed romance. They seem much more practical about it, less playful. In a way, this book is a nod to my parents, as well as a guide to romance for the younger generation.

You pretty much always use lawyers as your main characters. Why?

It’s what I know. After 30 years, the law and the legal world are so firmly embedded in my brain that I can’t flush them out. That has become the lens through which I view the world and that naturally guides my characters and plots. Injustice infuriates me, but it also leads me to great stories. Even in this book, I find a way to explore social and criminal justice issues.


Greta McDonald is convinced she doesn’t have time for love, but her dearly departed parents feel differently.

Attorney Greta McDonald runs a free legal clinic for Milwaukee’s financially disadvantaged population. Funded by the estate of her late parents, Greta’s dedication to those who can’t afford legal services leaves no time for romance. While on Earth, Melissa and Steven McDonald had enjoyed a true love match and they want the same for their daughter. Unfortunately, angels are only permitted to observe family members left behind, and in times of extreme danger, request assistance, but they are not allowed to interfere in matters of the heart. The couple has already tested God’s indulgence several times and now they’re facing the possibility of being cast out of Heaven into Purgatory.

Enter Aaron Buckley, a ruthless litigator, and Greta’s primary nemesis in court. Despite their differences, he is determined to win Greta’s heart. Unfortunately, Greta’s commitment to her clinic, her resistance to a relationship, and her propensity to place herself in peril, threaten to prevent a love match. Without a little heavenly #1 intervention, this couple may never have the opportunity to embrace the miracle of true love.

When Aaron’s grandfather offers a family-tested three-part plan to win Greta’s heart, Aaron is all in. Unfortunately, Greta isn’t making things easy, but as everyone knows, the show’s not over until the heavenly choir sings!



Pops, she looks like an angel. Long wavy blonde hair with glints of red, big hazel eyes, and built like a nymph. Slender with legs that were molded by Venus. And she’s bright and snarky and just a breath of fresh air. So different from other women I’ve met.”

Pops whistled. “Molded by Venus? Son, you’ve got it bad.” He ran a hand through his sparse gray hair and shook his head. At age eighty-three, he was still in fine shape. “She just wants you to work for it. Hell, all women want their men to work for it. Why your grandmother made me plow her father’s fields. For free. She said she wanted his approval before she would grant me the pleasure of her company.” He grinned. “So, there I was, sweating my ass off in this humungous field, plowing away with some rickety old tractor, she and her daddy grinning from ear to ear, so proud that they had conned me into free labor.”

Aaron chuckled. “What did you do?”

I plowed the rest of the damn field into a crazy-eight pattern, one that would require a do-over, and told her—and her daddy—that I wasn’t going to fix it unless and until she went on three dates with me.”

You did not…”

Yup. And she caved, too. Her Daddy was horrified that I would leave his fields in such disarray. Said he’d be the laughingstock of the Farmer’s Coop. He ordered her to date me. Of course, he had no way of knowing that I intended to charm her socks off. By the third date, she was all but begging me to marry her. And believe me, I made her beg. After the third date, I fixed her Daddy’s field and started dating Gladys Culpepper. Your grandmother was fit to be tied. Came storming up to me after church and tried to slap me. I grabbed her hand and nuzzled her neck—much to the consternation of all the old church ladies—and whispered, “You want me? The only way to get me is to agree to marry me at this very moment. I won’t be offering again.” Pops ran a hand through his thin gray hair. “She grabbed me by the ears, laid one on me, turned to poor Gladys, and declared, Charles Buckley won’t be calling you anymore, Gladys. He’s marrying me.”

Aaron stared at his grandfather. “What the heck did you do to charm her?”

Book trailer: (pre-release) (pre-release) (post-release)

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Amazon: [Coming soon]

Barnes & Noble: [Coming soon]

Kobo: [Coming soon]


BookBub: [Coming soon]

About the Author

Award-winning author Seelie Kay writes scintillating tales of lawyers in love, sometimes with a dash of kink.

Writing under a nom de plume, the former lawyer and journalist draws her stories from more than 30 years in the legal world. Seelie’s wicked pen has resulted in twenty-two works of fiction, including the new paranormal romance series Donovan Trait, as well the erotic romance Kinky Briefs series and The Feisty Lawyers romantic suspense series. She also authored The Last Christmas, The Garage Dweller, A Touchdown to Remember, The President’s Wife, The President’s Daughter, Seizing Hope, The White House Wedding, and participated in the romance anthology Pieces of Us.

When not spinning romantic tales, Seelie ghostwrites nonfiction for lawyers and other professionals. Currently, she resides in a bucolic exurb outside Milwaukee, WI, where she enjoys opera, the Green Bay Packers, gourmet cooking, organic gardening, and an occasional bottle of red wine.

Seelie is an MS warrior and ruthlessly battles the disease on a daily basis. Her message to those diagnosed with MS: Never give up. You define MS, it does not define you!

Seelie can be reached at,, or on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, or TikTok.

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Prior Books

Kinky Briefs:

Kinky Briefs, Too:,-too

Kinky Briefs, Thrice:,-thrice

Kinky Briefs, Quatro:,-quatro

Kinky Briefs, Cinque:,-cinque

Snatching Dianna:





The Garage Dweller:

The President’s Wife:

Seizing Hope:

The White House Wedding:

The Last Christmas:

The President’s Daughter:

A Touchdown to Remember:

First, We Kill All the Lawyers:,-we-kill-all-the-lawyers

Ye Gods! The Law is an Ass!:

Vive la Resistance:

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

You'll have to be brave, and trust me -- #MFRWHooks #LGBTQ #PrideMonth

Burn, Baby cover

Welcome to the weekly MFRW Book Hooks blog hop!

I’ve been traveling for most of the month, so my posts on Beyond Romance have been rather sparse. Furthermore, here we are in the final days of June, but I’ve hardly done anything to celebrate Pride Month.

To partially remedy both omissions, I’ve got an excerpt from my lesbian erotic romance story “Sundae, Bloody Sundae”, which is part of my collection Burn, Baby: A Sapphic Six Pack

This story, which has a good deal of personal resonance, is about dominance, submission, and eating disorders. Not your typical romance topic, right? However, I know from my own experience how much love and trust are necessary to heal the craziness that leads to anorexia.

The Hook

Girl, you're not doing justice to this fine crustacean,” I laughed. “Come here.” I grabbed one of the claws from her plate, extracted a succulent chunk of meat and dunked it in melted butter. I held the dripping morsel to her lips. “Open wide,” I ordered.

If I'd consumed a bit less wine, I'd probably have been able to label her expression. Recalling that instant now, I realize that what I saw on her face was pure terror. At the time, I thought that she was simply being stubborn, refusing to part her rosebud lips.

Jana? Come on now, eat it.”

She shook her head. “Please, I'm not hungry, Mel.”

It's delicious. Have a bite.”

No, really...”

Do I need to pull you onto my lap, flip up your skirt and wallop your scrawny ass right here in front of everyone?” A spark of lust mingled with the dread in her eyes, hardening my resolve. “Do as you're told.”

I smeared some of the butter over her lips. She shrank back in her chair, away from the laden fork. “Jana,” I warned, struggling to keep my temper in check. “You're disappointing me. I want you to eat the lobster.”

She knew me well enough by then to recognize that I was not going to back down. Like a slow motion film, she opened her mouth and allowed me to place the butter-drenched meat on her tongue. I watched her chew and swallow, then presented her with another piece.



Reluctantly, she accepted the tidbit.

That's my girl.” She favored me with a weak smile. “Again, now.” I stopped feeding her after another few bites. She looked so uncomfortable that I thought she might not be well. I wasn't terribly surprised when she excused herself to go to the ladies' room.

When more than fifteen minutes had passed without her returning to the table, though, I started to worry. I paid our check, grabbed my shoulder bag, and headed after her.

I pushed open the restroom door. “Jana? Are you all right?” After the tasteful dimness of the dining room, the glaring fluorescents made me blink. It took me a few seconds to locate my lover.

She huddled on the tiled floor, back to the wall, knees drawn up, arms hugging her chest. Her cheeks were chalk white. Her eyes were closed, her lips pressed into a thin line. Her green hem had ridden up, exposing her lean, pale thighs. She looked forlorn and frail, like an abandoned child. A faint whiff of sickness hung in the air.

Comprehension smashed into me like a speeding truck. I crouched next to her and smoothed the fine wheat-blond hair off her clammy forehead. “Why didn't you tell me, baby?”

Jana's face showed far more pain than it ever did when I flogged her. “I — I was ashamed. I thought that if you knew, if you saw the real me, you wouldn't want me anymore. I'm foul, disgusting, an ugly, jiggling lump of blubber...”

Don't be ridiculous! You're actually a bit skinny for my tastes — I like some flesh on my girls, otherwise spanking hurts my hand. But I figured that your work required a certain body type. It never occurred to me... Oh, Jana!” I clasped her to my breast, acutely aware of the fragile skeleton under her delicate skin.

How could I have been so blind? I knew eating disorders were no joke. I'd lost one friend to anorexia in college. Another had suffered permanent kidney damage. I shivered at the thought that happening to my sweet little ballerina.

How long have you been doing this?” I demanded. She shuddered in my arms.

Since my last year in high school,” she replied, her voice muffled by my clothing. “Forever.”

Well, you're going to stop it now. I'll help you.”

It won't work.” Her alabaster cheeks were streaked with tears. “I was hospitalized for three months. In therapy for five years. Everyone thought I was better, but as soon as I was on my own, I started again. I can't help it, Mel. I'm so hungry, all the time. There's this raging demon inside of me, screaming to be fed. If I give in, I'll turn into a fat pig. That's the real me, the one nobody knows. When I look in the mirror, I see her staring back. I see the layers of fat piling up on my thighs and belly. It's sickening. I feel them wobbling like jelly, burying me, smothering me...”

Hysteria lurked in her voice. I swallowed my dismissive reply. Rationally, she knew this was all nonsense. She didn't need me to tell her. That didn't make her hallucinations any less real or her terror less overwhelming.

We'll beat this, baby.” I helped her to her feet. She leaned on my arm, seeming weak and drained. “You're going to move in with me. Would you like that?”

Yes, of course, but...”

We'll eat together, as often as possible. I'll take care of you. You don't need to be afraid.”


You're forbidden to weigh yourself more often than once a week. And if your weight goes down...” I tried to sound stern. Deep down, though, I was full of doubt. Jana was a born masochist. What sort of punishment could I propose that would actually change her behavior?

You want to please me, don't you?”

Oh yes — more than anything!”

Then you'll have to be brave, trust me, and eat what I tell you to. I won't let you get fat, I promise.”

Be sure to visit the other authors participating in today’s Book Hooks event!

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Review Tuesday: My Zombie Boyfriend by T. Strange -- #LGBTQ #ParanormalRomance #ReviewTuesday

My Zombie Boyfriend cover

My Zombie Boyfriend by T. Strange

Self Published, 2017

Edward Grey, medical student and necromancer-in-training, lives a simple and somewhat isolated life. He knows he’s gay, after a fling with a morgue attendant who’s even more entangled with death than Edward himself, but he can’t really imagine having a serious relationship. Who would want a shy, awkward nerd whose social life revolves around his parents and his mangy, temperamental zombie cat Boo?

Then one evening, walking home through the park, Edward discovers the freshly murdered corpse of a seriously attractive young man. He feels compelled to drag the body home and bring it back to life. The resurrected hottie, whom Edward christens “Kit”, has no memory at all of his former identity, but exhibits far more personality and individual will than the typical zombie. Before long, Kit has redecorated Edward’s house, found a job as a barista, and started dressing Edward in the same fashionable, preppie clothes he personally favors.

Gradually, Edward and his reanimated roommate grow closer; sex with a zombie turns out to be surprisingly satisfying. When Kit stumbles on the truth of his murder, however, he turns into an uncontrollable monster fresh out of a horror film.

I’ve read a number of novels by T. Strange. I’m always impressed by their originality and unpredictability. My Zombie Boyfriend is no exception. It’s ironic, peculiar and twisted, edged with horror and seasoned with a pleasant touch of lust. It’s also subtly funny, though I was a bit surprised so see it labeled as a rom-com on the Amazon page.

The book doesn’t have the emotional weight of some of T. Strange’s work. (In particular, I found Rook far more intense and memorable.) However, it’s well-written, entertaining, and full of unexpected pleasures. How can you not love a series entitled “The Undead Canadians”?

Sunday, June 25, 2023

Charity Sunday: Care for Everyone – #MSF #Conflict #CharitySunday

Charity Sunday banner

Charity Sunday snuck up on me. I was away for the first two weeks of June – on an actual vacation! – then scrambling to deal with all the work and other issues that had piled up during the time I was traveling. Only today, Saturday, did I remember that this weekend is the last one in June.

Thus, I didn’t have time to set up a sign-up post for other bloggers to join the hop. If any of you decide to do an impromptu Charity Sunday post, please leave the link in your comment.

I didn’t have to think very hard to decide what organization to support. Just yesterday I was reading a newspaper article about the horrific conditions in Sudan. The current power struggle between two strong men has killed thousands of civilians, displaced millions, and left tens of millions vulnerable to famine and disease.

The article described how, in the midst of this humanitarian catastrophe, Doctors Without Borders (M̩decins Sans Fronti̬res) is struggling to provide essential health care services to the population victimized by the conflict. Sudan is just one of more than seventy countries where MSF is active. The organization assembles volunteer teams of medical professionals who work under the most difficult conditions, in countries all over the world Рwherever disasters or wars threaten the well-being of humanity.

I am a long-time supporter of MSF, not just because of the work they do, but due to their principles of impartiality, independence and neutrality. They put serious effort into avoiding political connections that would compromise their mission. In a conflict situation like Sudan, they help everyone, regardless of their affiliations or background.

Anyway, if you’re not familiar with MSF, I hope you’ll spend some time browsing their excellent website, to get some idea of the breadth of their programs. Even if you don’t have that kind of time – do leave me a comment! I will donate two dollars to MSF for every comment I receive on this post.

As for my traditional excerpt – in 2012 I edited a charitable anthology called Coming Together: In Vein, a collection of vampire erotica to benefit MSF. Coming Together is no longer active, so I don’t know whether profits are still being funneled to MSF. But it’s a great anthology (if I do say so), diverse, creepy and erotic.

From Vampires, Limited by Lisabet Sarai

In Coming Together: In Vein

Tell me about Barbara,” she asked finally. “The woman in the photos.” As soon as she saw his ravaged face, she was sorry for the question.

I was stupid, inexperienced. And we were so much in love. When I realized what I had become, I crawled to her on my hands and knees and begged her forgiveness. I was so terribly sorry to have ruined our plans for a life together. Barbara, though, had other ideas. She pointed out that, according to all information, we could now share eternity. All I had to do was turn her, make her into a vampire too.

I was reluctant, but she convinced me. She was so beautiful, I couldn’t bear the notion that she would eventually age and die while I’d live forever.

We planned the ritual carefully, almost as if it were our wedding ceremony...”

The photos–” Lara interrupted.

Right.” Jim laughed bitterly. “I set up the camera to record it all. The initiation of my beloved into the realm of the undead. But it all went terribly wrong.” He choked back a sob. Lara felt a sympathetic lump in her throat.

What happened?”

Everybody knows how you make a new vampire. First you drain the victim’s blood, bringing her close to death. Then you allow her to drink your blood. That’s what we planned. That’s what we did. It was incredible, terrifying and ecstatic.”


But she died. I couldn’t save her. I couldn’t turn her. Since then I’ve learned the truth.”

Lara was silent, waiting.

To create a new vampire, you must suck the victim’s blood while you’re physically connected. While you’re having sex.”

You’re joking!”

No, it’s no joke. That’s why I ended up this way. That girl at the party—all she really wanted was my blood. But one thing led to another, and eventually we were fucking. I don’t think she really understood either.”

No wonder his little demonstration had produced such an intense effect. For him, blood lust and sexual desire were inextricably entwined. The instinctive drive to reproduce, to bring more souls over the boundary of death into the shadowy world that he inhabited, this was something he could not deny, and could only imperfectly control.

Lara knew she should be frightened. She should get out his seductive presence before she made a final, incorrigible mistake. The risk, the pure reality of it, only made her want him more.

He was watching her. She could feel his eyes on her lips, on her throat, on the rise and fall of her breasts as her breath quickened.

She glanced around the bar, filling up now that it was after five. Donnie’s was not known as a “blood” bar, but still, she noticed half a dozen men wearing capes and pale make up, plus two or three women in slinky black dresses and wigs. It was pathetic, the way they all craved a fleeting taste of inhuman power, a brush with immortality. And here she sat, thigh to thigh with the genuine article.

I don’t fully understand it,” Jim said, obviously catching her thoughts once again. “Why would they want to be me? Power’s nice, but overall, I live a pretty lonely and miserable existence.”

Maybe—maybe I can make you feel less lonely. For a little while.” Lara cradled his cheek for an instant, then pulled his mouth to hers. His lips were soft as any flesh, warm and muscular as they met and molded to her own lips. She tasted the wine he had been drinking, with background flavors of iron and salt. His tongue, too, felt human, jousting against hers, exploring, questioning.

Her rigid nipples pressed rudely through the stretchy fabric of her top, pleading for his attention. Of course he knew what she wanted. Without breaking the kiss, he cupped both breasts, tracing symmetrical circles around the tips. Her pussy clenched. Her thighs opened involuntarily. She rocked back and forth on the bench, rubbing her clit against the hard wood.

Please,” she moaned against his open mouth, and then was silent, realizing that she did not have to say anything. He broke the kiss to throw a twenty pound note on the table, then pulled her to his chest.

Imagine your apartment,” he said, close to her ear. “Think about your bedroom. And hold on tight.”

Please, don’t forget to leave a comment. That is, after all, the whole point of Charity Sunday.


Friday, June 23, 2023

Radar for lovers – #LGBTQ #MatureRomance #Nemesis

Ripening Passion cover

By Adriana Kraft (Guest Blogger)

Picture this: The year is 2006. You’re a bisexual woman in your late fifties, and your only significant love relationship was with a woman who died of cancer four years ago. What does your future hold? What do you hope for?

Meet Claire Johnson, heroine of Ripening Passion. As with so many single professional mid-life women, satisfaction and meaning for her have become focused on career. Relationships take second place if they’re on the radar screen at all.

Claire is extremely happy with her work. She helped found and now co-directs a cutting-edge center for human sexuality in New York City, where she’s lived ever since her college graduation in the late sixties—an era of great social and sexual upheaval. Taking stock of her upscale Manhattan apartment, her trusted work colleagues, and her mission to enhance the sexual lives of others, she sees nothing she’d want to change, now or in the future.

Enter Max Wilson.


Can Max melt the Ice Queen? Should he even try?

Claire Johnson’s dedication to sex—the cornerstone of her career—led her to help found the Center for Sexuality and Sex Practices. Now in her fifties, she knows the Center must keep pace with the rapidly growing Baby Boomer market, so she agrees to go back on camera for a series on sex and aging. But work with her nemesis?

Former English Professor Max Wilson has championed the cause of the Center ever since his now deceased wife sought the Center’s help to rekindle the nearly extinguished sexual flames of their relationship. He loves working on camera and welcomes the challenge to perform with the svelte but icy temptress.

Sparks fly immediately on and off camera. The jury is out on whether either Max or Claire can transform those sparks into a fire of sexual desire for their viewers—let alone for each other.

Universal Buy Link


There sure are a lot of power walkers out this evening,” Claire said

Max chuckled. “Do you suppose they’re power walkers, or are they just people in a rush to get somewhere?”

Good point. I imagine I used to rush like that.”

But not anymore?”

Claire shook her head, cradling his hand. “Not anymore. Time is rushing faster than I can manage. Don’t stare, but take a peek at the young couple at about two o’clock braced against the tree making out. They do seem to enjoy kissing.”

Max looked, then nibbled Claire’s ear. “Who’s staring? You do have radar for lovers.”

Cripes, she’s riding his knee. Oh my, a girl after my own heart. Max, she’s hanging onto his shoulder for dear life, but she’s not surrendering her perch on his thigh for anything. He’s looking around. Oops, I think he caught me watching. Ah.” Claire sighed. “She stopped, now they’re kissing wildly again.” Claire squeezed his fingers on her breast. “That girl had a damn good ride. Oh, to be young lovers again.”

Being old lovers isn’t bad.” Max dipped his fingers under the fabric covering her breast.

If that couple were to look across the way at us, they’d never guess I’m sitting here with my man caressing my nipple. And”—she turned and kissed his cheek—“that I’m wet as hell.”

You could probably hump my knee and they wouldn’t even notice because they don’t expect it. That’s one advantage with age. People don’t expect us to be horny or do outrageous things.”

So true. And there’s something quite gratifying about defying their limited expectations. Perhaps we should go over and share our wisdom with the youngsters.”

Max shook his head. “I doubt they’d listen.

About the Author

Adriana Kraft is the pen name for a married pair of retired professors writing erotic romance and erotic romantic suspense together. We like to think we’ve broken the mold for staid, fusty academics, and we hope lots of former profs are enjoying life as much as we are.

Having lived in many states across the Midwest, we now make our home in southern Arizona, where we enjoy hiking, golf, and travel, especially to the many Arizona Native American historical sites.

Together we have published more than fifty romance novels and novellas to outstanding reviews. Whether readers open our romantic suspense or our erotic romance, they can expect characters they care about, hot sex scenes, and a compelling story.

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Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Friends and Lovers -- #Menage #Adventures #Friendship

Intimate friends

Image by Khusen Rustamov from Pixabay

I was primed to want him long before I met him. Was this a deliberate ploy on my husband's part? Or just the consequence of my hyperactive sexual imagination?

James is a really good friend,” K told me. He'd known James for years before I appeared on the scene, during his tumultuous period living in San Francisco. “He's a physicist. Does research at UCSF hospital.” My ears perked up. I've always found intelligence to be an aphrodisiac. “Oh, and you should see his paintings and sculpture. He's really talented.” Oh my! An artist too! Was I wet already?

We were on our way cross country and planned to stop in the City by the Bay before heading south to Los Angeles. Having spent the last few years in grad school on the East Coast, K hadn't seen James in a while, but he assured me that we'd get a warm welcome.

And did I tell you about his time in Japan?” K executed a neat maneuver to pass a battered, dusty pickup, then pointed the Subaru straight across the sere plains of eastern Colorado. The Rockies were blue-gray shadows hugging the horizon.

I squeezed my husband's thigh. “No, I don't think so. What was he doing in Japan?”

Working in a sex show.” He gave me a quick glance, as if to gauge my reaction, before returning his gaze to the empty, monotonous highway.

A tingle swept through me. “You're kidding, right?” At that point I hadn't yet visited Japan, but everyone had heard bizarre stories about the Japanese sexual underground.

No, not at all. For three months James and his partner performed live in some club in Tokyo. Fucking on stage six nights a week.”

I sat silent, staring into the distance and pondering this thrilling and disturbing concept. I considered myself a free spirit, a bit of a sexual outlaw, but public sex, for money? What sort of person would engage in such behavior?

Why?” I asked finally, expecting some wild tale of extortion or human slavery.

He was curious to see what it would be like,” K responded with a chuckle.

I was quiet for a long time after that, contemplating with excitement and trepidation the prospect of meeting this “friend”. I had no idea what he looked like, but I was already half in lust.

James turned out to be lean and loose-limbed, a good half a head taller than K, with unruly hair, a soft voice and an easy laugh. As K had promised, he offered us the spare room in his Mission District flat. We shared take-out Chinese, red wine from a gallon jug and lots of pot. We talked about art, science, philosophy, politics. Well, K and James talked, mostly, catching up after years apart, reestablishing the bonds of their friendship. I listened, uncharacteristically mute, watching James' long, expressive fingers trace patterns in the air as he explained some nuance of electromagnetic theory, wondering how those fingers would feel feathering across my nipples.

K asked about James' partner – ex-partner as it turned out – but the one subject we didn't discuss was sex. Still, the entire evening buzzed with erotic tension. When James looked at me, I felt the heat simmering in his lanky body. What had K told him about me?

I honestly don't recall how we ended up in bed together. All I remember is how easy it was, how light and relaxed - how friendly. I didn't worry about jealousy; that seemed a non-issue as I mounted K and James slid his cock (long and thin like his fingers) into my rear hole. My first double penetration - only the second or third time I'd ever experienced anal sex, actually. I can hardly believe, looking back, how little resistance James found. At the time, I was too turned on to even think about the question. I was neither surprised nor shocked. It was obviously the natural thing to be doing. We all agreed about that.

Sandwiched between a man I loved and my new lover, I felt not only acute pleasure but a delicious sense of connection. I was cherished and desired, giving and receiving. The brazenness of our actions thrilled me. The three-way intimacy kindled a new kind of joy.

I remember the details of the next day more clearly now than I do that incandescent night. The three of us went to see a matinee of “Raiders of the Lost Ark”. We strolled down the San Francisco sidewalk, arm in arm in arm, with me in the middle once again. I wore a flouncy white cotton dress I'd bought in Tijuana, with nothing underneath. I felt like a dirty angel, high on residual arousal, perversely proud we'd been brave enough to push friendship to its next obvious level.

Even after K and I moved back East, we remained close with James. We attended his wedding. Later, after their son was born, we visited him and Priscilla in their redwood-encircled cabin in the Santa Cruz mountains. We never had sex together again, but our mutual erotic history gave the relationship a special poignancy. I knew James remembered, as I did.

Four decades later, we've mostly lost touch. James' struggles with addiction and psychiatric problems have weakened the connection. I regret that deeply. As I've gotten older, I've come to appreciate more fully how remarkable that episode really was – despite the fact that it felt inevitable at the time.

Enumerating a list of my long-time friends, I'm a bit embarrassed to realize how many of them were once my lovers. One might point to this as evidence of my unbridled promiscuity during my twenties and thirties. I interpret this fact differently, though. I've always been sexually attracted to people I like and admire, both women and men. Although I've had close friendships that were completely platonic, without the smallest shred of desire on my part, that's not the norm for me. The intellectual and emotional buzz from meeting someone special transmutes into sexual desire.

In most cases, I've refrained from acting on my lusts, especially in recent years. Instead, they spill over into my dreams. Even people I haven't met in person – people I've come to know and love remotely, in the guise of Lisabet Sarai – have found their way into my night visions. That's one reason why I am reluctant to get closer to some of you in the real world. Friends are always welcome. At this stage in my life, though, I probably don't need more lovers.