Welcome to Flashback Friday
I'm EM Lynley and my very first published story was released by Torquere in 2008, but it's no longer available or I'd do a way-back flashback. Instead, I'm going to re-introduce my first Color Box release, EMERALD: Rewriting History 1.
When they first announced this new line I knew I'd claim emerald. As a May baby, it's my birthstone and part of my nickname, which is where "EM" comes from!
Once I had my title, it was simple to come up with a museum exhibition and a priceless emerald that a sexy jewel thief would be after. And to complicate things, the curator would be the thief's old boyfriend. What fun this was to write. I love guys in tuxes, so they're either wearing them or...well... they're not wearing anything for most of the book. One of my favorite scenes: the guys have sex in a pyramid. You'll just have to read it for yourself.
Plus, the research about art theft, museums and general lack of regard for laws surrounding much of the art world spawned ideas for a dozen further adventures for curator Tobin Wyler and art thief Pierce Worthingon... thus beginning my very first series!
Here's the blurb:
Museum curator Tobin Wyler is about to open the most significant exhibition of his career, and everything is going perfectly until he spots his former boyfriend chatting with his most important contributor at the black-tie reception. It goes from bad to worse because not only did Pierce Worthington once break Tobin's heart, but he's suspected of being the elusive art thief known as Jaguar, and Tobin knows his target is the highlight of the exhibit: an enormous emerald known as the Green Sorrow.
Pierce is torn about seeing Tobin again. He is expected to obtain the emerald, but he knows it may damage Tobin's reputation. What Pierce doesn't expect is how quickly old feelings about Tobin rise to the surface. Hoping to ease Tobin's fears and spend time with him, Pierce offers to let Tobin keep a constant eye on him for the thirty six hours leading up to the exhibit. Thrown together again out of necessity laced with attraction, Tobin must figure out how to protect the emerald, his reputation, and his heart.
And an excerpt:
Tobin He'd been on Cloud Nine when he'd walked into to the elegant private party, a mass of jewel-colored cocktail dresses and designer tuxedoes to celebrate the imminent opening of his most important exhibition.
At Home with Royalty, a collection of antiquities and artifacts used by royal families throughout the ages would open to the public in two days. It would be the first time in over five hundred years all five gems from the legendary Crown of Amsara would be reunited. The literal crowning glory of the piece -- and of the entire exhibit -- was one of the largest emeralds ever found: The Green Sorrow hadn't been seen for centuries, and Tobin had not only located it, but convinced its owner, Sheikh Abdul-Shakur, to allow it to be on public display.
With the hard work behind him, Tobin let his guard down for the first time in months. Tonight's reception honored the private collectors and curators of other museums whose pieces comprised the exhibit. Tobin had a way of charming collectors and boards of directors -- male or female -- into wanting to be part of art history and everyone he'd approached had been thrilled to include their pieces in the exhibit, with a few notable exceptions.
With a satisfaction that bordered on arousal, he noticed the swarm of guests around the case containing the Crown of Amsara, murmuring in awe and appreciation of the spectacular emerald.
As Tobin walked through the throng of guests, various people came up to him with greetings of congratulations, double-cheeked European kisses and one hotel room key slipped into a pocket, but he only gave them a fraction of his attention. He had his eye and his mind on a tall sandy-haired figure on the far side of the room.
From a three-quarter back view, the way the Italian-cut tux fit him made Tobin want to get to know him, whoever he was. God how Tobin loved what Italians could do with fabric; even when fully dressed you could still know nearly everything you wanted about a man's body. Mmm.
Well, past Cloud Nine at this point, maybe even on Ten or Eleven, Tobin had approached within ten feet of his target when the man turned around. Tobin's mood immediately plummeted to earth, crashing into everything on the way down, and landing with a very real gut-wrenching thud.
"Tobin!" Sheikh Abdul-Shakur's shout came from behind Tobin's left shoulder, startling him. The sheikh grabbed Tobin, practically dragging him up to the elegantly dressed man. "We've been waiting for you to make an appearance! You know Pierce Worthington, don't you?"
Tobin's brain hadn't processed this situation yet, leaving him speechless.
"We're old... friends." Pierce broke the silence. The considerable pause -- and the look of terror Tobin's face probably displayed -- led the Sheikh to glance between the two men for a few seconds before he nodded in understanding of words left unsaid.
Pierce Worthington here? Now? And with Tobin's most important collector? Of course it had to happen sooner or later. They moved in the same circles, it had been sheer luck (or had it?) they hadn't crossed paths earlier. Tobin had to admit, occasionally he hoped he'd see Pierce again and have a good excuse to speak with him. There couldn't be a worse place for the meeting to happen than tonight. Because Tobin knew exactly why Pierce was here,now.
To steal the emerald.
[ Buy link at Torquere -- save 15%: put 'power082011' in the coupon code box through 8/29 ]
And if you like that, make sure to check out the next book in the series, ULTRAMARINE: Rewriting History 2 where Pierce and Tobin head to London. Stay tuned for the third volume which should be released near the end of the year, and join Tobin and Pierce in Italy.
Thanks for sharing this little stroll down memory lane!