First Kiss Friday – Sinful Passions by Anna Markland

Today’s First Kiss Friday featured guest is Anna Markland, author of medieval romance Sinful Passions.  Welcome back Anna!  Here’s the first kiss between Suannoch and Rodrick.


Great to be back as Laurel’s guest. Thanks for having me.

Today’s First Kiss is from Sinful Passions. While the title may suggest an erotic romance, this is actually the touching love story of Rodrick and Swan, second cousins twice removed, who fall in love. Forbidden to marry by the medieval church’s laws of consanguinity, they are forced to travel to Rome to seek a dispensation from the Pope. The plot is complicated further when Rodrick’s twin sister, Grace, and Swan’s brother, Bronson, also fall in love.

In this scene, Swan is taking her last ride as a free woman, having been consigned to a nunnery by the father of her recently deceased betrothed.

(BTW, Swan is a nickname. Her given name is Suannoch, but she has such a long, graceful neck, the nickname came readily).

Sinful Passions is available from Amazon in digital and paperback.




The light-heartedness fled when neither of Swan’s companions smiled in response to her jest. “What’s wrong? I’m sorry I rode off. I thought you were right behind me.”

Her horse shied nervously when Rodrick suddenly dismounted and came to her side. He put one hand over hers, the other on her bare knee. She glanced at Bronson who had definitely seen their cousin’s unseemly action yet said nothing. Her heart stopped beating as Rodrick’s hand stroked her leg. She managed to squeak, “What’s going on?” out of her dry throat.

“Look me in the eye, Swan,” Rodrick commanded. “I intend to speak to my father to help me devise a plan to keep you out of the convent.”

She stared at him, not comprehending his meaning, but unwilling to douse the spark of hope in her breast. “I don’t understand.”

“Our cousin fancies he’s in love with you,” Bronson explained.

She looked into Rodrick’s eyes, expecting to see amused denial, but her heart leapt into her throat at the sincerity on his face. It broke her heart. Why now? “This cannot be,” she cried. “We are cousins.”

Rodrick reached up, put his hands on her waist and lifted her from the horse. The breath whooshed from her lungs when he pulled her body to his. “We are second cousins, Swan, and half second cousins at that. If you tell me you feel for me what burns in my heart for you, I will move heaven and earth to remove any impediments to our union.”

Her treacherous hips wanted to press against the evidence of his desire. She’d seen her brothers naked when they were children but didn’t recall anything of the size and hardness of the flesh nestled against her mons. Heat flooded her despite the evening chill creeping off the moor. Her knees threatened to buckle. The impulse was to agree, but was it because Rodrick offered a means of escape, slim though the chances were. Did she yearn for him, or for freedom?

The brush of his warm lips against hers dispelled any doubts. She melted into him, opening readily when his tongue coaxed entry. She savored his taste, drank of his moisture, inhaled his breath as their tongues mated.

Bronson cleared his throat. “I take it that’s a yes.”

Rodrick cupped her chin. “Good enough for me,” he breathed.

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