Back in her flat, she shivered in her wet clothes. The storm seemed to have followed them to London and raged outside. Dusk had just settled over the city. It was six hours earlier here than in Cambodia, which meant the night had started over for her. For them.
Without a word, he tucked the box into his jacket pocket, then took her hand, leading her to her bathroom. He turned on the shower, then began to unbutton her shirt.
His eyes were as wild as that Lykae's had been. "Do you want that box, Kaderin?"
She nodded, still out of breath.
He pushed her shirt past her shoulders, then pulled it down her arms, freeing it. "You have to pay for it." He unclasped the fastening at the front of her soaked-through bra, then it, too, fell to the ground. At the sight of her breasts, he inhaled deeply but didn't touch her, only continued to undress her. She had to hold on to his shoulders as he unzipped her pants and dragged them and her panties from her.
When she stood before him, completely unclothed, she asked in a bewildered tone, "What do you want?" She was still dazed - not only by the violence of the night, but by that look of his in the rain. She shivered to recall it.
"Wash off the mud, and come to the bedroom," he ordered, his voice rough.
She stared at the door for long moments after he left. Then she noticed, in her bathroom, all of his things. Razor, toothbrush, soap. The bastard had moved in? Her attention had been focused on him when they first arrived, but now she could recall seeing books and newspapers lying scattered throughout the flat. A pair of boots had been kicked off at the door. "The bloody squatter," she muttered as she stepped under the water.
As she scrubbed away at the mud covering her, she wondered what he would demand. She was infuriated, but at the same time, she was burning with curiosity.
Would he try to drink her again? Or make love to her? Or both? She hated that imagining either made her aroused.
But even though she truly yearned to make love to the man she'd seen in the storm and confusion tonight, she wouldn't be coerced into it.
After washing her hair, she dried off and shrugged into a pink silk robe. When she returned to the bedroom, stepping around his things, he stood.
He'd removed his wet jacket and shirt. His chest was still damp, the muscles tense. His eyes were black once more. "Come here," he said, and she could barely make her feet move.
Worrying her bottom lip, she crossed to him. When she stood in front of him, he wasted no time, palming the curves of her ass under her robe, making her gasp.
Then he languidly kissed her neck with slow licks, before dipping to her breasts. When he sucked her nipple through the silk, she moaned, and her knees went weak. But he held her firmly.
"Bastian," she breathed. "I want to tell you something." Would he believe she never intended to go to bed with Gamboa?
He drew away. "The time for talking is over. Now, do you want your trinket or not?"
"I won't make love to you," she told him.
His lips curled into a cruel smirk. "You assume that I want to make love to you?"
She blinked up at him, clearly surprised by his words. "What if I told you that I want you to give me the prize? As a gift to your Bride? You offered once."
"We're past that. I'm not a gentleman anymore. I'm not even a human. And you're no lady."
When he pressed down on her shoulders, there was no mistaking what he desired. She stiffened, but he said, "Oh, no, you want your prize, then you'll do as I wish."
She went to her knees before him. "Couldn't get a nymph to do this?"
"Why would I settle for a nymph when I have a Valkyrie at my bidding?"
"And this is what you want?" she asked, gazing up at him.
"Yes," he rasped, one hand on her head, the other clutching her nape. He wanted her before him like this, to be forced to look up at him and acknowledge that he was in control. He could master her if he chose. He wanted her to taste him, to show him this pleasure.
No, not like this.
Where did that thought come from? When he was so goddamned close to finally knowing what this was like?
He ground his teeth, not even able to imagine what her mouth closing over his shaft would feel like. But doubt nagged him. Lust warred with an indistinct warning deep inside him.
The way she turned to me tonight...
He choked out, "Stop." He clutched her shoulders. "Get off your knees. I don't want you to do this." He yanked her to her feet, then strode away. "This would make you a whore. I can't do that."
"How is it different from the basilisk's egg?" she asked, her tone rising with anger.
"Then I sought only to touch you."
Her eyes flashed silver. "Why do you even care if this would brand me a whore?"
"Do you know what this is like? I know you care nothing for me, but I feel as if we're wed. For you to have gone to another man... and let him touch you... " He ran his hand over his face, his arousal waning quickly. "Forget it." He tossed the box onto the bed and turned away. "You can have it."
"Payment on the pillow? But, Sebastian, I didn't earn it." Before he could trace, she said, "By the way, you arrogant ass... "
She sauntered to his back, trailing a finger over his shoulders, which tensed from the light touch. Lowering her voice to a breathy tone, she said, "You've just sacrificed the chance to experience how an immortal female worships a male with her mouth."
Her finger skimmed to his front as she walked around to face him. She stood on her toes, and at his ear, she murmured, "I would have given you the hottest, wettest kiss you've ever received. I would have spent ages taking you with my tongue."
Sudden sweat beaded on his forehead.
"But now, I've only to thank you for saving me all those hours."
He shuddered, then strode away from her with a grated sound of frustration. "Do you think this was easy to give up when it would be from you?" He felt crazed with lust. Curiosity goaded him. He threw his hands up, pacing in long strides. "Seeing you on your knees when I've never had - "
"Had what?" When he said nothing, just stilled and ran his hand over the back of his neck, she asked softly, "You've never had that?"
Sebastian looked away sharply, unwilling to admit it to her, and unable to deny it.
He isn't denying it? Kaderin's lips parted. He's never experienced that?
The idea shocked her. Then it stirred her, making shivers dance up her spine.
I could be his first.
She could admit that her anger had come partly from thwarted desire. When the wet material of his pants had hugged his thick shaft in front of her, she'd grown weak with humiliation and heat because she'd wanted to taste him. Now that arousal roared to life once more.
To be a male's first at anything? She tilted her head at him. "Have you... imagined me doing it to you?"
He scowled as if her question was absurd.
"I see." He seemed volatile, seething inside. She felt as if she'd cornered a wounded bear and needed to move gingerly. "Why would you give away the opportunity?"
He snapped, "Because it's not over with us!"
She drew back her head. "Even after Colombia?"
He crossed to her. "Tonight, at the minefield, you were different. It's... just not over."
At his words, a well of emotion swept her up. Desire, yes, but now she could admit there was much more. Sebastian had wanted to be cruel to her - clearly had needed to be.
Yet he couldn't.
Even when he craved this pleasure so badly, he couldn't force her to do it.
Suddenly, tenderness for him threatened to overwhelm her. So much so that the thought of him yearning all these years for something he'd never experienced made her ache as well. She found it unbearable to think of him wondering what it would be like with her.
She'd desired the merciless man she'd gazed up at in the rain, but she also hungered for the man here before her now with vulnerability in his eyes. "What if I wanted to do it?" She nibbled her bottom lip. "Would you still like me to?"
She saw him go hard as steel again. "I... only... only if you wanted to."
Oh, she did. She lifted her hand to stroke his face tenderly. He closed his eyes briefly at her touch. And I'm going to make it so damn good. If he'd waited his entire life for it, she'd guarantee it would be worth the wait.
And, of course, she had to live up to her careless bragging. "Worship," Kaderin? Well, actually... She recalled a scene she'd inadvertently witnessed long ago. She'd crept into a dark warlock's harem to free a witch who'd found good favor with the Valkyrie. The Valkyrie weren't susceptible to spells, but this warlock had been powerful and Kaderin had been alone. She'd found a hiding place to stay until everyone went to sleep.
She'd ultimately waited till dawn. Because one of his concubines had pleasured him for hour after hour in a most original manner.
Kaderin had filed the idea away, thinking, One day, if I find those desires again, I'd really like to try this.
That time was now. She wanted to give Sebastian an experience to remember - for eternity. An immortal version of what he'd fantasized about. "I do want to, Bastian." Now she laced her arms around his neck. "But I have conditions."
A hint of a wounded half-grin. "You always have conditions."
"I think you can live with these."
Ten minutes later, Sebastian found himself chained to Kaderin's bed.
He should have seen that wicked glint in her eyes and traced the other way.
But she'd been giving him soft kisses with those ruby lips as she'd smoothed her palms over his chest and torso. When she'd asked him to give her five minutes to get ready, he'd obliged and left the bedroom. He'd been kicking off his boots when she'd come to take his hand, stroking it sensuously with her thumb. She'd tucked her hair behind her ear, smiling at him over her shoulder as she led him to her bed.
Did he ask what she'd done in her room? Hell, no. At that point, and after that bewitching smile, if she'd murmured, "I'm leading you into the fiery depths of hell," he'd have followed dumbly.
Then they'd lain on the bed, slowly kissing again. The way she would give soft moans into his mouth maddened him. When she lapped her tongue against his, he couldn't stop imagining how it would feel on his cock...
Then he'd suddenly found one wrist shackled to a chain she'd stretched under her bed. "What the bloody hell - ?"
"Bastian, it's a condition of this deal."
Warnings had arisen. This is not wise. They'd just been fighting. They'd resolved nothing between them. But he knew he could break free if need be. He could trace free. Why would she want this?
Then she'd smiled once more, that seductive curl of her lips, and he could no longer think of anything but sliding his shaft between them. He let her chain the other wrist.
When he was secured, she'd surveyed him with eyes gone silver and licked her lips.
And one second ago, he'd watched in astonishment as she clawed his pants off, leaving him without a thread on.
"I imagined this that first morning with you," she said, pressing her lips to his torso. Her damp hair grazed over his skin, making him shudder with pleasure. "Imagined ripping off your pants to get my mouth on your shaft."
He groaned in disbelief, wondering if he'd die of ecstasy when he felt her warm breaths going lower. If this was a dream, he'd be damned if he would wake. After nuzzling the trail of hair leading down from his navel, she glanced up. "Are you ready?"
"Christ, yes, I've been ready - "
The first touch of her hot little tongue, running across the head of his shaft, stopped his breath.
"Ah, God," he finally managed. When the slit grew moist, she dipped her tongue down and gave it a dabbing lick.
His eyes rolled back in his head.
Then came the long, slow slide of her wet lips. He arched his back. When she flicked her tongue while he was in her mouth, the pleasure was so intense he yelled out. With effort, he raised his head to witness it - he had to see this - breaths going ragged at the sight of her taking him in.
He wanted to brush her hair aside to see better, but the chains prevented him. He could have broken them easily, but she'd deemed the chains a condition. He'd never jeopardize this.
As if she'd read his mind, she smoothed her hair over one shoulder, giving him an unimpeded view.
He hissed in a breath when she caressed her face against the length, lovingly, as she had that first morning against his cheek. "What do you think?"
"Can't seem to," he said, choking out the words. She smiled.
Completely uninhibited, she continued her ministrations, making it impossible to hold out much longer. Her mouth was so hot and wet, he wanted it to go on forever, but he felt his sack tightening. "About to come... " Just when he was about to go over the edge, she released him from her mouth, as he'd expected. He didn't dare think she'd take all of him.
"No, Bastian, you're really not."
Brows drawn together, Sebastian grated, "Think I'd know this."
She squeezed the head of his erection in her fist, preventing him from ejaculating, then hid her surprise. It worked!
His shaft was swollen with seed, the pressure visibly paining him. They both stared at it, before meeting eyes.
She saw the exact moment realization hit him. "You can't mean to... "
When she nodded, he yanked on the chains, seeming incredulous that they were holding him.
"The chains have been mystically reinforced," she explained with a leisurely lick. "Not even an immortal as strong as you can break them, and you can't trace from them, either."
He still tried to. "Let me free," he growled. "Is this some kind of revenge?" His naked body was wracked with tension, every muscle bulging as he fought the chains. His arms grew even more huge with effort.
"Not revenge, Bastian." Once his seed descended again, and he wasn't in immediate danger of release, she removed her robe. His struggles eased as his lips parted. She leaned over, breasts close to his mouth, to prop up his head with a pillow. With his gaze riveted to her body, his battle to be free subsided. When she straddled him, he stilled completely, as if he'd forgotten to resist.
"Closer," he commanded.
She moved in, holding her breasts to his mouth, one, then the other. He sucked her nipples hard, groaning around each, hands clenching in the manacles.
When she pulled away, he bit out curses - until she moved down his body to take him with her mouth once more. She relished the taste of his flesh, loved how responsive he was, how disbelieving when she licked the base and down to his heavy sack.
"These things you do to me... my God, I didn't know... "
She couldn't take all of his prodigious length, so she used her hand as well, stroking the base.
"Katja, I'm about - "
She gripped him hard, preventing him again, and he yelled out in agony. He dug his heels into the bed to thrust, to shake her hand loose, desperate to lose his seed in any way. Never had she seen anything so erotic as his body twisting in the chains.
But she held firm, and soon he grew drugged with lust, nearly insensible. His chest was slicked with sweat, and his entire body quaked with the need for release. He reverted to his native language, and the things he told her made it clear he didn't think she could understand him. However, she spoke Estonian fluently.
Oh. Had she forgotten to tell him?
He rasped that she was his kena, his darling, that she was so precious to him. He admitted he hadn't been able to tell her that, no matter how badly he'd needed to.
He would die if he knew I can understand him.
He told her he wanted her with him, only him, after this night. Just as he'd been loyal to her and would ever be. For always...
Sebastian hadn't had another that night in Colombia? Emotion trilled through her, making her toes curl, and she became hungrier for him - if possible - and aroused to the point of agony.
Her fingers longed to trail down to her sex for what would be an instant release. Loyal for always? She shivered, kissing him lovingly now, breathing hot and fast. She couldn't stop a moan -
Immediately, he lifted his head, shaking it hard, as if to clear a haze. "Let me free."
What had brought about this abrupt change? "Bastian, this time I promise you can - "
"Let me free, or I will find a way out of these chains." His demeanor was becoming alarming. His eyes were narrowed and black.
Seeing that he was serious, she leaned up. "Why? Didn't you like what I was doing?"
He yanked on the chains, straining, as her eyes went wide.
She wasn't at all certain she wanted to release the vampire she'd just been sexually tormenting. While she was naked and needing. And not when his eyes promised retaliation. "Wh-what do you want to do?" Good money said, To turn the tables.
If she unlocked those shackles, he'd take her this very night.
Now she felt like he was skipping a step.
She hadn't been prepared to have sex with him yet. Yet? Oh, gods. As if it had been a foregone conclusion. She'd only slept with men she'd trusted, and for all of Sebastian's considerable charms, she did not trust him.
He strained against the bonds even harder than before, but no vampire could break through those - he'd only hurt himself.
Suddenly, she became very conscious of how much larger he was than she. His cut muscles that usually thrilled her now made her swallow with alarm. His shaft, which she'd always found so big and wondrous, daunted her.
Everything added up to make her want to run, but when a trickle of blood slid from his wrist, she cried, "Wait!" and dove forward for the key. With trembling hands, she unlocked him -
In an instant, he tossed her onto her back, looming over her, and began palming and fondling her between her thighs. He groaned to the ceiling to find her so wet.
"Bastian! What're you doing?"
He faced her. "It's time." His voice was unrecognizable.
"Wh-whoa, what time? Why now?"
"You're denying us for no reason... you want me, too." His whole hand covered her sex possessively, rubbing. "Tell me you don't need me inside you, and I'll stop." With his other hand, he grasped her breast, brushing his thumb over her jutting nipple. "Tell me."
She glanced away, gritting her teeth. Finally, between panting breaths, she said, "If we do this, Sebastian, there's no making love. There's no claiming me, like I'm lost luggage. This isn't a promise of any kind. Just meaningless sex." Surely he'd balk at that?
Instead, he grated, "Agreed."
"Wh-what? You're agreeing to meaningless sex?"
"Any kind with you, Bride." The dark look he gave her made her shiver, even before he growled, "I'm due."
"So you think you're just going to take the reins?" If he does, I'm lost.
In answer, Sebastian knelt between her legs, shoving them apart with his knees.
Kaderin was so beautiful, her breasts lush beneath his hands, her nipples stiff against his palms. Her sex was visibly wet, waiting to be filled, and his cock throbbed to be buried inside it.
"Sebastian, we can't just do this! I'm not ready - " Her words died in her throat when he slipped his finger inside her.
"You feel ready." He pressed a second finger in.
When her knees fell wide in surrender, he knew he was about to have her, at last, and nothing would stop him. Not after what she'd just been doing to him - and to herself. His Bride desired him, had moaned around his shaft as she licked it desperately. Her kiss had maddened him, but the idea of her aching for what he could give her was too much to take.
He didn't want to hurt her, though, and he knew he'd never been this hard. He could hold on a little longer and make sure her body was ready for him.
His fingers thrust in and out, slowly, as he played with her nipples, and soon she was as frenzied as he was. "Bastian," she cried. "I'm ready!"
When she tried to draw him down to her, claws biting into his shoulders, he caught her wrists above her head with one hand.
She went wild. Cries burst from her as she arched her back sharply. He'd known taking her would be furious...
With his other hand, he grasped his shaft to guide it in. When the tip met her heat, he bit out an agonized curse, and ran the head up and down her slick sex.
He worked just the head in, and groaned in anguish. The urge to buck between her legs or fall into her was overwhelming. He choked out the words, "You're so tight." As tight as he suspected a virgin would be.
She was panting, her soft breasts pressed against his chest as she rolled her hips on his cock head to work more of it inside her. He had to release her wrists so he could clamp his hands on her hips and pin her down to the mattress.
He was desperate for release, for her release. He would follow her if it killed him. As he drove his length into her, inch by inch, he gritted his teeth. When he flexed his hips, plunging deeper, she cried out, and he froze. "Ah, God, I've hurt you."
As soon as he'd said it, he felt the real reason she'd cried out, and threw his head back at the shock of pleasure. She was coming - her sex contracting frantically around his shaft, gripping it like a hot fist, her body demanding what he had to give it.
Her orgasm continued on and on, pulling him deeper inside her. He'd never imagined...
After that, there was no denying her wet, hungry sheath. Unable to stop himself, he sank into her as far as he could go, grinding against her, yelling out, about to lose his seed right then.
He'd never known...
Her head thrashed on the pillow, and her sleek body twisted beneath him. Her legs tightened around his waist, locking his cock deep as she writhed, as untamed as he'd known she would be.
The pressure... her tight heat.
No fighting this. Pinning her down hard, he bucked uncontrollably. He gave a brutal yell as his seed came. He groaned out with each shot, over and over, relentless, as she delivered the most violent pleasure he'd ever imagined.