Dark Wolf Page 42

“I can’t be afraid with your arms around me, Dimitri,” she answered. She turned her face up into his neck, rubbing like a cat over his skin.

There was a little hitch to her voice that caught at him. “What then?” He lifted her chin with one finger and bent his head to kiss away the path of tears. “Why are you crying?” He trailed more kisses, featherlight, to the corner of her mouth.

He felt her tremble, the smallest of shivers, but she didn’t pull away from him, rather she turned her face subtly so his next kiss brushed across her lips. “Csitri, we’re safe now.” He kissed her gently, demanding nothing. Asking for nothing. Simply telling her he loved her and holding her close were all that mattered in that moment.

Her lips curved into a faint smile beneath his. “We’re safe as long as we stay here in the ground, my love. I believe my father and uncle are somewhere close.”

“You have nothing to fear from your family, Skyler,” Dimitri assured. “Without you, I would be dead. As my lifemate, you had every right to do what you did.”

“I see. So if our daughter ever . . .”

“She would be locked in her room for the rest of her life,” he interrupted. “Our child will be timid and want to cling to her parents.”

She laughed, turning her face back up to his throat. Her soft lips brushed kisses over the three loops of burns circling around his throat and neck. Her tongue stroked caresses there, following the path of those silver chains. He knew why she’d awakened weeping. For him. Not for herself. She wept for him and the suffering he’d gone through.

He slid his hand into her hair, bunching the thick silken strands into his fist. “Beloved. It is done. We’re both safe and together. Paul and Josef are alive and will heal nicely. Both will be heralded as heroes . . . well, after their families and Gabriel give them lectures and try to put the fear of death into them. Which won’t work because they’ve already faced real death.”

She laughed softly. “That’s so true. Josef said he’d have to go to ground for a hundred years. But they came with me. Both of them. I have amazing friends.” Her lips went back to feathering kisses in between the silken stroking of her tongue.

A rush of heat sent small flames flickering through his bloodstream. Every muscle tightened, became aware of the woman in his arms. His woman. With every movement, her bare skin brushed his intimately. He caught enticing glimpses of her br**sts, the rose-tipped peaks and the rounded, very feminine curves.

They were bound now, soul to soul, and even a man as strong-willed as her legendary father could never separate them again. He didn’t try to hide his body’s reaction from her. He respected Skyler too much to pretend anything.

She lifted her head to look down at him, her dark eyes shimmering with ever-changing color. “I want you to want me, Dimitri.”

He gave her a faint smile. “That’s a good thing, Skyler,” he assured her. “Because I do. It’s natural to want to make love to the woman you’re in love with.”

“You’ll need to be patient with me. I want you to teach me.”

He framed her face with both hands. “It’s okay to be afraid and to tell me when you are.”

She nodded her head. “I know. I know you now. I know I’m safe with you.” She leaned closer to him. “I missed you so much all the times you were gone. I have no idea when I began to really know I love you, but it’s been a very long while now and growing stronger every moment.”

“Thank you for coming to rescue me,” he said simply, meaning it. She’d saved them both, giving them a chance at a life together. “You saved my life.”

“I discovered, when I couldn’t touch your mind with mine, that there was no Skyler without Dimitri.” Her eyes went soft, that dove gray that he was especially fond of. “I suppose it was more of a selfish act than a heroic one, tracking you down.”

He laughed softly. “Only you would think that.”

The amusement faded from her eyes. “We need to find a place where we can be alone, Dimitri. I know I can do a better job of healing you, both inside and out, but not here. Not with the Lycans surrounding us and a mob of Carpathian hunters watching our every move.”

“No one is watching us now, sívamet,” he assured. “We’re deep underground. Even should the Lycans crawl on the roof of the shelter above us and look down, they could not see us lying here. I have created a shield that no eyes can penetrate.”

She collapsed against him, as if that small spurt of energy had gone and she was exhausted again. “I am trying not to blame all Lycans, Dimitri. Intellectually, I understand it was a few individuals, but I still want to kick them all.”

Her confession made him laugh. “Kick them all?” he repeated. “You’re priceless, csitri, you really are. I had something much more lethal in mind.”

“Dimitri!” She turned her head up to look at him again. “How perfectly wonderful. You are capable of wanting revenge. I felt a bit guilty that I’m not a better person.”

“I don’t think you ever have to worry that you need to live up to me,” he assured her. “I’ve got plenty of faults.”

“Like?” she prompted.

He leaned in to kiss her. This time his mouth was firmer, a little more insistent. He stroked his tongue along the seam of her mouth and then traced her soft, full lips.

“I’m not telling you. You have to find those things out for yourself.”

Skyler pressed her mouth to his, a soft little teasing kiss, brushing her lips back and forth over his, as if she was testing the sensation. Her tongue stroked over his lips, following his lead, tasting him a little tentatively, but growing bolder as she deepened the kiss.

His hand tightened in her hair, holding her still. She startled, a deer caught in a poacher’s light, but she didn’t pull away from him. Her eyes widened, went soft. That beautiful shade of gray, indicating she was relaxed and happy.

Loving with such intensity was terrifying—wonderful—but terrifying. He would never be the same. He would never have that perfect control of the emotionless warrior. He would forever need this small woman who held his life in the palm of her hand.

He took possession of that perfect mouth, so warm and soft and inviting. His fist bunched in the thick silky strands of her hair, anchoring her to him, his first aggressive, controlling move, his first demand. He waited a heartbeat, giving her the chance to pull away, but she remained motionless, a small bird with a fluttering heart, holding still, waiting.

His mouth coaxed hers to open for him, more of a claim then he’d ever made on her before, more insistent. He counted his heartbeats this time, afraid she’d panic and pull away, but her trust in him overcame any fears she had and she opened her mouth to him. He took control, sweeping inside to claim her as a woman, a lover.

The rush was hot and instant, an electrical charge sizzling through his veins, snapping along his every nerve ending. Love for her encompassed him, infused into his very muscle and bone, so that his need of her, rising like a tidal wave, melded with desire. There would never be a way to separate the two emotions, that devastating urgent hunger for her, and the overwhelming love.

His brain threatened to short out. His heart raced, nearly burst in his chest. Every muscle hardened as blood rushed hotly to his groin. Her mouth was sweet, tangy and hot, a haven of pleasure he wanted to visit over and over. He tasted passion, not just his, but hers as well.

Her need met his. Rose with his. Matched his. Her mouth was untutored, and that made it all the sweeter for him. She wasn’t hesitant, but maybe a little shy. Nevertheless, she followed his lead willingly, and when he touched her mind, there was no fear, only the need to give him the same pleasure he was giving her.

He kissed her over and over, allowing himself to drown in her passion, stealing her breath, giving her his. This soft, seemingly fragile woman had saved him with the core of steel running through her and the incredible feminine power she wielded. She had given him life once, a reason to live, and then a second time, when there was only agony and no reason to hope, she had come for him.

He lifted his head to look down at her, drawing air into his aching lungs. Skyler pulled back, looking at him with her enormous eyes, her lashes fluttering down to cover her expression, but not before he caught the stunned, dazed look. “Kissing is so amazing,” she admitted, settling into his arms again. “I think I could get addicted to it quite easily.”

“I am already addicted to kissing you,” he said, his tone low. “So let’s clarify, just in case we run into one of those not so nice things about my character. Kissing me is amazing. It would be very deadly for anyone else.”

A little shiver went down Skyler’s spine at his tone. He looked as calm and as familiar as ever—her perfect Dimitri—but there was something in the timbre of his voice and in his eyes that told her he was very serious.

“Silly man, who else would I be kissing?” Before he could answer, she laughed softly. “Except Paul and Josef and my family. They don’t count.”

Paul and Josef were her family. He’d accepted that a long time ago—and it hadn’t been easy. Once he’d looked into her mind and really sorted out her emotions regarding both boys—no—men now, the relationship between them had never bothered him again. In fact, he’d grown quite fond of both, regarding them as she did—siblings more than friends.

“We need to feed,” Dimitri said. “We’re both weak.”

She shuddered. “I don’t think I could just creep up on someone and sink my teeth into their neck, Dimitri. It’s not that I haven’t thought about it a lot, and Josef gave me his blood several times, but to just take someone’s blood that I don’t know . . .”

“That’s my job right now, not yours,” Dimitri said. “I believe your father and uncle are waiting for you to rise so they can make certain you’re alive and well. They’ll give us blood. They’re ancients and their blood is powerful. It will aid in healing. We’ll both need to be strong in order to get out of here. The Lycans really do have us surrounded. I’ve scanned the forest and they’re out there, waiting for all us to make a move.”

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