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A Marriage of Convenience


Series: Code of Honour ~ Book 1

Totally Bound

April 2009 (Reissue of story as single title)

E-Book ISBN #: 978-1-906811-63-1

Genre: Contemporary


Theme: New Military Anthology - A celebration of our heroic soldiers.

All Total-e-Bound’s profits from this anthology will be going to Forces Benevolent Funds. Read complete press release here.


A Marriage of Convenience will be released as a Single Title on April 27, 2009.


|Read an Excerpt | Read the Reviews  Buy E-Book|

 Buy Camouflaged Hearts Anthology


A Naval pilot, a one night stand and years later a second chance, can he make it work this time?

Pharmacological student, Ayanna Barker, was working hard to give her and her son a good life. Sure, things were tight, but it was all worth it. The man who had given her the best night of her life had been a few inches over six feet, mocha brown hair, dark chocolaty eyes, and golden skin all over. The other thing he had left her with was a child, which happened to be the best thing in her life.

US Navy pilot Lieutenant Michael Taylor loved the rush his job gave him but even that took a back seat to how he felt his one night in the arms of the lovely Ayanna Barker. Dark nutmeg skin, as soft as anything had the right to be. Faint auburn highlights accentuated her dark hair, and her brown eyes were gentle.

Four years later Michael sees her at a different military institution. Ayanna was more beautiful than his vivid memories had recalled her to be, but now she had a child…she had his child. Determined to be a part of her life, and his sons, Michael moves them in to his home and marries her. Each day reawakened emotions burn hotter and hotter as they try and keep things under control.

With an impetuous child binding them even closer, can Michael and Ayanna realize what they share is so much more than just a marriage of convenience?


Content below is not suitable if under 18.


“Ayanna, are you listening to me?”

Blinking rapidly, Ayanna shook her head, dragged back to the moment. “Sorry Lauren, I got lost there for a sec.”

“From the dreamy expression on your face, I’d bet it was a guy.”

Ayanna blushed. “Yeah, it was.”

“Who?” Lauren asked, more than ready to dish some dirt with her friend.

“Devon’s father.”

A blonde eyebrow rose. “You haven’t ever talked much about him. I guess I always assumed your relationship had ended badly.”

A short bark of laughter slipped out. “Relationship? Let’s just say I was being ‘liberated’ and such. Went to the Thunderbirds air show and the fireworks afterward. The rest was history.”

Lauren opened and shut her mouth. “Is Devon’s father military?” Her head cocked to the side in question.

Ayanna shrugged. “He said he was staying at Kirkland. To be honest…I didn’t care. I was at lot younger then, still trying to figure out what I wanted to do.”

Lauren smirked. “Since I’ve met Devon, I’d say you did do something you wanted to.”

Running a hand down her face, Ayanna narrowed her eyes. Leaning forward, she whispered in a conspiratorial tone, “I did and it was wonderful. I have never, and I mean never, felt like that.”

“What happened between you two?” Lauren asked.

“What do you mean? We had a wonderful night and then…parted ways.”

“I mean, why didn’t you tell him about Devon?”

“I didn’t know until I was two months pregnant.” Ayanna smoothed out her sandwich bag and put it back into her lunch container. “I had to settle down and get my life in order— and fast—so that’s what I did.”

“Were you scared he wouldn’t—”

“No,” Ayanna interrupted. “I didn’t even think about him at all. The second I got the news I was pregnant, my whole world shifted. It was all about the precious life I carried. And has been ever since. Having Devon is the greatest thing that could have happened to me. Sure, I wish circumstances had been different. Like marriage beforehand, but it didn’t happen that way.”

She placed her empty water bottle inside the container as well. “I wasn’t anywhere near New Mexico and didn’t have extra money to attempt to find him. Okay, perhaps I was scared of rejection.” Ayanna fiddled with her lunch box. “Perhaps I was scared to hear anything negative out of his mouth. I wanted to remember him as he was when we spent the night together. Passionate. Sexual. Erotic. Not angry and accusing. I had enough on my plate to deal with.”

Lauren smiled softly and reached her hand across the round wire table. “I’m glad we became friends. And I am going to stop questioning you about this, because—” She pointed to the left.

Ayanna followed her friend’s finger with her gaze and smiled. Erma, her babysitter who was really more like a grandmother, and her son were heading toward them. Devon churned his little legs as fast as he could, a silly grin on his face.

Standing, she started to walk to him.

Ayanna? Ayanna, is that you?”

Looking behind her, she met the gaze of the person who called out to her and froze. Staring back at her was the most sensual pair of dark chocolate eyes she’d seen in her life.

Michael Kelly Taylor.

Dear sweet Jesus. Am I imagining him? How come he still looks so damn good?

She allowed her gaze to roam over his body. Everything around her faded as his stare touched her like the lover he’d been to her that one wonderful night. Her lower body reacted much the same way it had the night they had met. Suddenly, she grew damp. Her hand touched the base of her throat. All it takes is a look and I am ready. Ready for him to… Mentally shaking the direction of those thoughts away, Ayanna fought to moisturise her dry throat. How is it when my mouth goes dry my pussy is drenched?

“Michael?” she murmured.

The afternoon sun glinted off his dark hair. Those muscles covering his body were more defined than they had been before. His body rippled with power and the promise of safety.

In slow motion, she took in his jeans and the shirt and realised he was the same man who’d returned her purse to Lauren. The same man who’d given her more pleasure than anyone had a right to experience.


Copyright © Aliyah Burke, 2007.

All Rights Reserved, Total-E-Bound.


Reviews of  A Marriage of Convenience…?

Talia at Joyfully Reviewed says: “I am a glutton for secret baby stories and marriages of convenience. I can’t get enough of them! Aliyah Burke’s contribution to my fetish is excellent. Ayanna and Michael spent one night together and I have to admit that their love scenes are some of the hottest I have ever read. I blushed, sighed happily, and sat wide eyed as I read. Two lives met, separated, and then found each other again. I couldn’t have asked for a better story – A Marriage of Convenience gets two thumbs up!”


Danielle at Coffee Time Romance gives FIVE coffee cups and says: “A Marriage of Convenience is another one of those stories that had me sighing. I just love the whole theme and storyline behind it. Ms. Burke is a very talented writer who adds complications and tension to a spicy and sexy read. Ayanna comes across as a well-rounded woman who is used to being a single parent, but is still pining over “the one.” Michael is the sexy pilot who will have any reader drooling over his hot body and can-do attitude. Throw in the mixture of old school mannerisms and their torrid affair, and this story will leave you breathless! ”


Krista at Coffee Time Romance gives FOUR coffee cups and says: “Ms. Burke shows that lust can turn into love if properly nurtured. It just takes time to understand one's feelings. Ayanna and Michael need to stop hiding from their feelings and embrace them. ”


Susan at Night Owl Romance  gives FOUR and a half and says: “This anthology is a wonderful read that will touch your heart and remind you of the sacrifices that are faced by our brave men in service to our country. Red hot stories and sexy men in uniform are combined to give the reader love and romance--soldier style. It will grab your "ah-tehn-shun" and fill you with emotions. Great read! ”


Julie at Simply Romance Reviews gives SRR GRADE B+  and says: “Aliyah Burke kicks off this anthology with my favorite story, A Marriage of Convenience. This is a really sexy and romantic story about a one night stand that turns out to be so much more. This short story could easily have been made into a full length book. There’s so much depth in this story and the emotional and physical response that Ayanna and Michael have towards each is what makes A Marriage of Convenience a real page turner. Aliyah Burke wrote an amazing short story and what an incredible way to kick off this fantastic anthology! ”


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