Dark Bites (Page 72)

Dark Bites (Dream-Hunter #1)(72)
Author: Sherrilyn Kenyon

She arched a brow. “I didn’t know you had another car.”

“Yeah. I love the Vette, but she’s temperamental and she hates snow.” He took her jacket off the peg inside her cube and held it open for her. “C’mon. I promise I’ll behave.”

Her stomach knotted in excitement and fear, she shrugged her coat on. “Okay.”

Adrian led her out of the building, across the virtually empty parking lot to an older-model black Bronco and opened the door for her.

After he got in and started the car, Sam sat beside Adrian with her heart in her throat. She was so nervous, she was actually trembling. It’d been a long time since she’d been with a guy. A long time since she’d gone to a guy’s place.

And she’d never loved a man as much as she did Adrian.

Should I make a move on him? Or should I wait for him to do something?

What if he thinks I’m fat? He was so well toned and she was… well, fleshy. What if it turned him off?

Good grief, her doubts and fears plagued her silly.

Adrian tried to think of something to say as he drove the ten-minute commute to his apartment.

But he couldn’t.

His hands were actually sweating inside his gloves. He hadn’t taken a girl home with him since college.

Should I make a move on her? Or should I wait for her to do something?

Is it too soon?

He didn’t want to scare her off. He really liked her. And the last thing he wanted was for her to bolt for the door.

But he couldn’t stand the thought of not having her.

By the time he pulled up next to his Corvette, his stomach was absolutely knotted.

“Do you have a roommate?” she asked as he walked her to his door.

“With the hours I keep? No one would put up with me.” He unlocked the door and let her in.

Sam entered the living room, then froze. She’d never seen anything like it in her life.

“Good Lord, it looks like a Circuit City showroom,” she said as her gaze darted over the big-screen TV, three leather recliners, DVD player, double-decker VCR, two computers, and a stereo bigger than her car.

His walls were stark white and completely bare. But at least the whole apartment was amazingly clean and well kept.

“Jeez. Adrian, you live like a bear in an electronic cave.”

He laughed as he locked the door, then set his keys, security badge, and wallet in a bowl on the breakfast counter.

He shrugged his coat off and hung it up in a closet to her left. Sam took hers off and handed it to him.

“Should I ask about the three recliners?”

He shrugged. “Sometimes the guys come over to watch a game.”

“So, why don’t you have a couch?”

He looked offended by the very idea. “I’m not sitting my ass down next to another guy. Jeez, Sam, I thought you were raised with five brothers.”

“Oh, yeah, how could I forget?” she said as she rolled her eyes at him. “The male and his territory.”

He laughed as he gave her a brief tour of his place.

“Do you really need a PlayStation 2, Dreamcast, and Nintendo 64?” she asked. But what really amused her was the small TV next to the big one. She arched a questioning brow.

“Sometimes I play games while I’m watching the big TV,” he said as if there were nothing unusual about it.

Sam smiled, until she glanced down at one of the chairs. Then she sobered. “You know, Adrian, you’re quite a guy.”

He gave her a puzzled frown.

“There’s not many men who let their underwear watch TV while they’re at work,” she said, glancing to the pair in the seat of the chair closest to the window.

“Oh, jeez,” he moaned as he grabbed them and rushed to the laundry room in the kitchen.

“I’m sorry,” she said as she followed after him. “I didn’t mean to embarrass you. I think it’s funny. Besides, I used to have to do my brothers’ laundry, and all I have to say is – ”

He turned around at the same time she took a step forward. They collided.

Adrian’s breath left his chest as soon as her br**sts touched his arm. She looked up at him with her lips parted and before he could stop himself, he took advantage of it.

Sam wrapped her arms around his shoulders as she kissed him with all the passion and love flowing through her. And in that moment, she knew what was about to happen between them.

This was the moment she’d spent the last year dreaming of.

Scared and excited, she couldn’t wait.

Adrian deepened his kiss as his hands roamed freely over her back, pressing her closer to him. Growling low in his throat, he pulled back from her lips and buried his mouth against her neck.

Sam hissed in pleasure as his hot tongue, lips, and teeth nibbled and suckled her. Chills swept through her entire body as her br**sts tingled in response to his expert, masculine touch. Heat pooled itself into an aching throb between her legs.

The scent of leather and Old Spice tormented her unmercifully. Gracious, how she wanted this man.

No one had ever made her feel the way he did. Desirable. Beautiful.

And best of all, needed.

Tonight, she would show her love to him. Tonight, she would hold nothing back and she would hope for a time when perhaps he might love her in return.

Adrian’s vision dulled as he inhaled the warm, sweet scent of her skin. And he wanted more of her.

He wanted all of her.

That need foremost on his mind, he ran his hand over her breast, and squeezed it gently. He moaned at the softness, and at the feel of her hardened nipple through her Santa sweater.

To his amazement, Sam answered the caress with one of her own as she reached down between their bodies and cupped him in her hand, through his jeans. Adrian growled as she stroked him, teased him, making his entire body quiver and burn for her.

She was bold with her caresses, and more than generous with her lips.

His body on fire, Adrian returned to her mouth as she unbuttoned his jeans, then slid her hand beneath the elastic band of his briefs to take him into her hand.

He sucked his breath in sharply between his teeth as he hardened to the point of pain.

“You are a big man,” she whispered against his lips as she gently stroked his shaft.

“You’re the only one who does that to me,” he whispered. He ran his hands under her sweater, over her smooth, soft skin, to the back of her bra where he released the catch.

His breath caught as her br**sts spilled out of the satin bra and into his hands. He reveled in the feel of those taut ni**les in his palms and he couldn’t wait to taste them. To run his tongue over the tiny ridges as he breathed her scent in.

Her soft flesh filled his hands past capacity and he loved it.

Then, she untucked his shirt and ran her hands over his chest and back, clutching at him in a way that made him dizzy.

The damned phone rang.

“Do you need to answer it?” she said breathlessly.

“To hell with it.”

“What if it’s work?”

“To hell with it.”

She laughed.

He heard his answering machine pick up.

“Adrian?”

He flinched as he heard his mother’s nasal, Southern drawl.

“Adrian, this is Mom. Are you there? If you are, pick up, honey. I need to talk to you.”

His hormones instantly iced by the sound of his mother’s voice, he pulled back. “I better answer it or she’ll call every ten minutes from now on and start beeping me.”

Devastated by the interruption, Sam licked her lips and tried to pull herself together as Adrian left her and picked up the cordless phone from the counter. He tucked his shirt back in and buttoned his pants.

“Hi, Mom,” he said coolly as he left the kitchen, then went to his bedroom, and closed the door while Sam straightened her own clothes.

“Adrian, where have you been? I’ve been calling for an hour.”

Sam went over to his answering machine to turn it off so that she wouldn’t overhear their conversation, but it had so many unmarked buttons, she didn’t know which one to press.

“I was at work.”

“I wish you’d give me your work number. I need to be able to get a hold of you when something comes up.”

“What do you need now, Mom?”

“I need you to come over and salt my driveway, so that I won’t get stuck here tomorrow.”

“Jesus, Mom, it’s a forty-minute drive and the roads are iced over.”

“I know, that’s why I need you to come over, right now.”

Sam frowned at his mother’s insistence.

“Mom, I can’t. I’m busy.”

His mother gave a dramatic sigh. “Busy doing what? Playing with your stupid computers again? All I ask is a little, tiny favor and this is the thanks I get. Do you know, I was in labor for thirty-six hours with you? I almost died giving birth.”

“Yes, Mom, I know.”

“Don’t you take that tone with me, young man. I gave my life to you kids, and the least you can do is take care of me in my old age.”

“You’re only forty-seven.”

“Don’t you dare get smart with me. It’s not like you have anything better to do. God forbid you should actually date and marry someone, and give me a grandchild.”

“Would you please lay off me, Mom? I’m not in the mood.”

“Fine,” she said in a sarcastic tone that made Sam want to choke her. “You just stay there, and let me fend for myself. You’re just like your worthless father.”

“Would you leave Dad out of this?”

“You’re just like him, you know. Selfish and worthless. It’s a good thing you don’t have a girlfriend. You’d probably just knock her up, and leave her, too.”

Sam’s heart lurched. Poor Adrian. It was a good thing he didn’t have another phone or she’d pick it up and give his mother a piece of her mind.

“Just my luck,” his mother continued. “To get stuck with an ungrateful son. I knew you should have been a girl. That’s fine, though. I’ll just call Heather and get her to do it.”

“Jeez, Mom, Heather can hardly drive when the weather’s clear and she lives farther away than I do.”

“What do you care? At least I can depend on her.”

“All right,” Adrian snapped. “I’m coming, okay? Don’t get her killed because you need your driveway salted.”

“Oh, good.”

Sam gaped at the sudden change in the woman’s voice. Now that she was getting her way, she actually sounded nice.

“Love you, sweetie.”

“Me, too.” By his tone, Sam knew he had his teeth gritted.

The answering machine clicked off. Sam shook her head. She’d never heard anything like that in her life.

Adrian came out of the bedroom with his jaw ticking. “I have to go out for a little bit.”

“Adrian, you can’t do that. What if you have a wreck and get killed?”

“Trust me, I’m not that lucky.”

“You’re not funny.”

He shrugged his heavy ski jacket on. Sam zipped it while he fixed the collar. “You be careful,” she said, standing up on her tiptoes to kiss him.

Adrian nibbled her lips as warmth spread through him. Only Sam had ever said that to him. “I will. Lock the door behind me.”

As soon as he was gone, Sam sighed. Adrian reminded her of a tolerant lion with cubs hanging off him while they nipped his skin. How could he stand it?

Shaking her head, Sam went to get herself a Coke. She opened the fridge and stared in disbelief. It was bare except for an almost-empty gallon of soured milk and a six-pack of beer.

Frowning, she opened his kitchen cabinets, taking inventory. One plate, two mismatched bowls, a cookie sheet, one medium-sized pot, three glasses, two coffee cups, coffee, and two half-empty boxes of cereal. That was it.

Unbelievable. She’d had no idea he lived like this. And now that she thought about it, she realized he didn’t even have a Christmas tree in his apartment.

The phone rang again.

Sam ignored it until the answering machine picked up.

“Adrian?” Heather said. “Hey, I need you to call me back as soon as you hear this, okay? Um, I need you, big brother. And please don’t yell at me. I had to write a check out for tuition today or else they’d cancel my classes. And I don’t have the money to cover it. I’m also two weeks overdue on my rent again. I really need twelve hundred dollars by tomorrow. I swear, I won’t ever again ask you for money. I know I said that last time, but I mean it this time. Anyway, please call me tonight. Love you.”

Sam ached for him. When he had told her he watched out for his sister and mother, she’d had no idea just what a challenge the two of them were.

“That’s it,” she muttered as she grabbed her coat out of the closet. “It’s time someone did something for you.”

It was almost three hours later when Adrian finally got home. His head throbbed from his mother’s incessant criticism. And the woman wondered why no man would ever stay with her for more than a few months.