"It’s not a line, Bride. I may be human, but I’m also an animal and the animal in me doesn’t lie or deceive. I never thought that part of me would be tamed, but it is now. It doesn’t want to lash out at anyone. It just wants you."
How could a woman say no to that?
Bride gasped as her clothes vanished. "Vane?"
Before she could get his name out, they were both lying nak*d in the bed, under the covers.
"That’s some talent you have there," she said as he nuzzled her neck.
"You’ve no idea," he breathed in her ear before he licked it.
Bride’s head swirled at the ecstasy of his touch. For once he didn’t waste any time with her. He slid himself inside her with one forceful thrust.
They moaned in unison.
Bride looked up into the raw pleasure on his face. This wasn’t playtime to him, he was most serious about taking her.
She slid her hands over his back, feeling his muscles ripple as he thrust into her, strong and powerful. He was the wolf and he was hungry. His green eyes devoured her.
Vane couldn’t think straight as he felt her softness under him. The animal in him wanted complete possession. It wanted to mate and to dominate.
The man in him wanted her tenderness. Her heart.
Most of all, he wanted to spend the rest of his life staring into her amber eyes. They were dark now with passion. Her lips were slightly parted as she panted with pleasure.
Vane claimed that mouth. He growled at the taste of her. At the sensation of her tongue against his while he thrust himself deep inside her over and over again.
Famished for her, he forced himself to be easy with her body. To remember that she was human and frail.
He would die if he ever hurt her.
But oh, the feel of her hands on his back. The way she clutched at his ass.
She didn’t just screw him. She made love to him. And that meant more to him than anything else.
Even if he were immortal, he would never feel anything better than her long, smooth legs entwined with his.
Bride was breathless as Vane devoured her. No man had ever made love to her like this as if he couldn’t get enough of her. As if he were desperate to be inside her body.
There was so much power and strength in the arms wrapped around her.
Arms that held her tenderly. Carefully.
Every forceful stroke pounded pleasure through her.
"I love the way your hands feel on me," he breathed raggedly as she cupped his rear. "And I love being able to take you like this."
"Face-to-face," he said, punctuating each word with a deep, lush stroke. "So that I can feel your br**sts on my chest. See your expression when you come for me."
He kissed her then. It was masterful and devouring. Fulfilling.
Bride was completely swept away by him. By the intense pleasure of him so thick and full inside her. The way he felt sliding against her body.
Vane let his powers flow through both of them. There was no longer any need to harness them or mask them. He let their passion fuel his powers, charging them to their highest level.
The sensation of it went through him like lightning, heightening every aspect of her flesh against his.
He knew the minute she felt the swell of his powers. She threw her head back in ultimate ecstasy. Her breathing ragged, she met him stroke for stroke.
And when she came, he had to shield her scream with his powers to keep the others from knowing what they were doing.
He smiled at the sight of her lost in the throes of her orgasm. At the feeling of her hands on his back as she gripped him tight.
Then Vane let himself join her. He growled as he released himself inside her. He lay on top of her, panting while his body continued to shiver and spasm.
All the while she played with his hair and held him close.
"That was incredible," Bride breathed. Then she frowned. "You do get bigger toward the end, don’t you?"
"Yes," he said, nibbling her lips, "and I can’t pull out of you for a few more minutes without hurting you."
Bride could still feel his body quivering. "Why do you do that and how did you keep me"
"I used a time spell so that you weren’t aware of how long it took me to finish." He hissed as another wave of orgasm went through him.
Vane half-expected her to be repulsed. She wasn’t.
Instead, she cradled his head to her and toyed with his hair until he was completely spent.
When he was finally finished, he slid himself out of her and collapsed by her side.
She turned to face him. "So this is what you’re really like?"
Vane nodded and waited for his heart to stop pounding. She draped herself over his chest and kissed his right nipple. He growled as she gave a light, playful lick to it.
"If you keep doing that, we’ll be in this bed for the rest of the day."
Bride scoffed. "I know you men. You’ll need at least a few hours to" Her voice trailed off as she felt him hardening against her thigh.
"I’m not human, Bride. Sex invigorates us. It doesn’t make us tired."
She lifted the sheet to see the truth of that statement. He was already hard again. "So I can play with you as much as I like?"
"Um-hmmm. I’m all yours, pet."
Biting her lip, Bride slid her hand down to cup him gently and to explore the entire length of him. Since Taylor had never made love to her with the lights on or in daylight, she’d never really had a chance to examine a guy up close before.
He bent one leg up and said nothing while she gently learned every nuance of his body.
Vane watched her closely while he played with the tendrils of her hair. He’d never had a woman so curious about him. She-wolves didn’t care what a male looked like so long as he could please her. Once the act was over, their females pushed them away and left. There was no sharing of bodies. No care given to caress and to love. To nurture.
That was what he cherished most about Bride.
Her fingers tenderly examined him. She carefully massaged his sac and his cock.
Chills spread over him. His outstretched leg actually twitched.
Bride giggled as she continued to stroke him. "Like that, do you?"
"Yes," he said raggedly as he felt his c**k harden even more.
She looked up at him, then did the unimaginable. She took him into her mouth.
Vane threw his head back and buried his hand in her hair as pleasure racked him.
He locked his jaw to keep from howling as she licked and teased him from the base to the tip. She slid him deep into her mouth as she sucked and played.
He cupped her face in his hands while his entire body burned. The unselfishness of this act
He hadn’t known such a thing existed. A Katagari female would sooner die than touch a male like this. It was the male’s job to satisfy the female, not the other way around.
Bride groaned deep in her throat as she tasted the very essence of Vane. She looked up to see him watching her, his eyes hooded with pleasure and disbelief.
It was a heady combination.
He looked as if she were showing him heaven. He brushed the hair back from her face, then stroked her cheekbone with his thumb while she tongued the underside of him.
She felt the air around them literally sizzle. She paused at the sound.
"It’s okay," Vane said breathlessly. "It’s just my powers surging. They do that sometimes."
She returned to him.
Vane ground his teeth as his pleasure built to an unbelievable high. Any second, he was going to come again. Afraid of hurting Bride, he pulled her away from him an instant before his body exploded.
It wasn’t the only thing. Every lightbulb in the room shattered with the force of it as his powers played havoc in the room.
He covered himself with the blanket and used his hand to help his body as it orgasmed.
He felt Bride’s hand on his. Opening his eyes, he watched as she took him into her hand and gently milked him until his body was completely drained.
"You didn’t have to pull me away, Vane," she said after a few minutes.
"I double in size when I come, Bride. I didn’t want to see you get hurt by it."
She pulled her hand away from him and kissed his lips.
Vane held her close to him, cherishing this novel moment with her.
She pulled back to look at the shattered bulbs. "I hope our host isn’t too" She broke off as he repaired every bulb with his powers.
"That is some talent you have there."
He smiled wickedly at her. "I prefer yours."
She was confused by that. "I don’t have any talent."
"Yes you do. That mouth of yours is definitely magic."
"Mmm," she said, kissing him again. "But it only works for you."
Bride pulled back as she realized something. "Wait a minute. You can’t ever cheat on me, can you?"
He shook his head. "Without you, I’m a total eunuch. My powers would lessen, too. Once sex is taken away from us, we have no way to recharge our energy.
Eventually we lose all our magic."
"Then how is your father the leader of your pack if he can’t wield magic?"
He frowned. "How did you know my father was our leader?"
"I heard the medieval people talking about it."
Vane took a long, deep breath before he explained it to her. "He became the pack’s leader before I was bora. The only reason he’s still in charge is that he’s extremely strong physically as a wolf and he makes deals with the Daimons for magic."
"Vampires. Unlike your television and movies, the real vampires don’t thrive on human blood, they thrive on human souls. If they take the soul of a Were-Hunter or a psychic human they can then absorb their powers. Daimons who are truly powerful are able to share that power with someone else. My father routinely makes sacrifices to them so that they’ll leave his pack alone and siphon off a bit of their magic to him."
He sighed as if the thought pained him. "He pretends someone has betrayed the pack and singles them out to be left for the Daimons. My brother Fang and I were the last sacrifices he made. I knew he’d send assassins out to kill us once the Daimons didn’t return to share power with him."
She couldn’t imagine anything worse than that. His father had sacrificed him to die. His mother hated him and would gladly kill him, too.
Her poor wolf. No wonder he had come to her.
"Oh Vane, I’m so sorry."
"It’s okay. I’m only surprised my father waited so long to set us up. I think the only reason he didn’t do it sooner was that for all his faults, he loved my sister, Anya, more than anything, and she loved us. So long as she lived, I don’t think he wanted to hurt her by killing us. But the instant she died"
"He came after you?"
She pulled his head to her br**sts and held him there, wanting to make it all better, knowing she couldn’t. But at least Vane seemed to be at peace with the past and with his parents and their unreasoning hatred of him. His strength amazed her. She didn’t know of any other man who could have had his past and his pain and be so compassionate and loving.
"What was it like in your commune?" she asked, wondering what other scars he hid with such dignity.
"I don’t know. We live like animals. We stay mostly in wolf form unless we head into the cities for something."
"Or sex. Sex is much more enjoyable as a human than as a wolf. There’s a lot more stimulation, especially for our females."
That was something she didn’t want to consider. She didn’t like thinking about Vane with anyone else. But at least she didn’t have the fear of him cheating on her. There was much to be said for that. Her own sister was currently going through a divorce over that very thing.
"So you pretty much live out your lives as wolves?" she asked.
He nodded. "For the Katagaria it’s really easy since the wolf is their base form. It’s what they default to whenever they rest or are hurt."
"But you’re Arcadian."
She could tell by the way he stiffened that it bothered him. "Yeah. So for me, it was unrelenting torture to maintain a wolf form. One of the reasons I’m so strong magically is that I had to learn to channel my powers so that I could remain a wolf while I was fighting, injured, or sleeping. Things that I should do as a human."
"And the tattoo on your face?"
"It’s more like a birthmark." He let out a deep breath and it reappeared on his face.
Bride traced the scrolling pattern that was oddly beautiful.
"Sentinels are Arcadian guardians," he explained. "Once an Arcadian is finished with puberty, the Fates choose who they think is strong enough to guard the world from the Slayers or animals who are out to prey on Arcadians and humankind."
She winced as she understood what he was telling her. "So you were living with wolves when you became human and then you became their worst enemy."
Her heart ached for him. "You must have been terrified. Why didn’t you leave?"
"I probably should have, but I was young and frightened. I knew nothing about the Arcadians and even less about humans. Remember, I was a wolf as a child. Our young are never allowed near real humans. I had no idea how to conduct myself or interact with your world. That was why I made a bargain with Acheron to take me into the past to meet my mother. I thought if I told her I was no longer an animal, she would help me adjust."