Authors: Nicole Camden
“Do you regret it?”
“Not until they dumped me on this damned island and told me to rest here for a few weeks.”
She gave him a peeved stare.
He offered her a wicked grin. “Now I'm thinking I should thank them for it.”
“You'd better be thinking that.”
He rubbed himself against her, letting his body caress hers. “Believe me, Marianne, I am.”
Marianne sighed as his kiss swept her into heaven. She didn't even protest when he removed her shirt and laid her back against the scratchy sand. Strange, this didn't look uncomfortable in movies and such, but in realityâ¦
She groaned as Kyle unzipped her shorts with his teeth, then pulled them down her legs. And when he did the same with her panties, she almost came just from the sheer eroticism of the act. He was like a wild predator set loose on her.
One who wanted only to devour her.
What was it about him that made her burn like this? That made her forget the fact that they could be discovered at any moment?
“You do like to live dangerously, don't you?” she asked as he crawled sinuously up her body, nibbling every inch of the way.
“There's no other way to live.” His hot breath teased her taut nipple before he opened his mouth and claimed it.
Marianne sighed in satisfaction as she cradled his head to her. His hair teased her skin while his tongue encircled her areola, teasing it to a hard, bitterly sweet nub that made her stomach contract every time he licked it.
The waves ran up the beach, lapping gently against her bare feet, while the hot sun heated her almost as much as Kyle's touch did.
Kyle pulled away only long enough to remove his jeans.
Marianne couldn't fathom why a man like this was interested in her. “Are you sure you're not one of the actors they hired for this?”
“Positive. Why do you ask?”
“I don't know. You just seem too good to be real.”
He snorted at that, then turned over with her so that she was on top of him. He reached for his discarded jeans and pulled out a condom, which he opened with his teeth, then reached around her so that he could put it on.
“I think you're the only person in my life to ever say such a thing to me. Most people I know curse the day they met me.”
“I don't believe that.”
She gasped as he lifted her up and set her down on his hard shaft. Marianne moaned at the feel of him inside her. The tip of his cock tickled her deep, making her entire body throb from the feel of him there.
Bracing her hands on his shoulders, she rode him slow and easy, savoring every lush stroke of his body with hers.
“I can't believe I just met you,” she said. It felt as if she'd known him much longer.
Kyle watched her as she milked his body with hers. Her hair fell around her lightly freckled shoulders, which had just a hint of red to them from their exposure to the sun. She was so beautiful there. Like some ancient goddess who had been washed up on the shore to seduce him.
He took her hand into his and suckled the pads of her fingers. He let the salty taste of her skin whet his appetite for her even more.
She was unlike any woman he'd ever met. She was cut from the same cloth as the pure, innocent homecoming queens he had dreamed about in his youth. The women he'd passed countless times on public streets and elevators. Decent women who knew nothing about espionage or lies. Deceit.
She was the kind of woman who would turn in the wallet that contained a thousand dollars without stealing a single bill.
His head reeled as she quickened her strokes. He reached up for her and pulled her lips to his so that he could feel closer to her.
Let some of her decency creep inside him.
He wanted to crawl inside her body. To find a safe, warm spot where such a thing as goodness lived.
Maybe if he stayed with her just a little longer some of her decency would rub off on him.
She came calling out his name.
Kyle didn't move as he watched the ecstasy on her face. When the last tremor had shuddered through her, she collapsed against him.
He rolled over with her again so that he could take control.
Marianne held him close, brushing the sand from his back as he slid himself in and out of her, thrusting against her in a demanding rhythm.
He was incredible. Powerful. Every stroke went through her, exciting her, and when his orgasm came, he cried out, then lay down on top of her.
She held him there, letting his breath stir her hair as his heart pounded against her breasts.
She closed her eyes and sighed contentedly. “Wow,” she said quietly. “I think I felt the earth move.”
He chuckled, but didn't make any move to leave her. “More likely it's just the waves moving the sand out from under us.”
She blew him a raspberry. “You're such a spoilsport.”
He kissed her lightly on the lips, then pulled her into the surf so that they could bathe in the crystal clear water where little tropical fish swam around their feet.
It was a perfect, surreal day.
“I feel strangely like Jane in some Tarzan movie.”
Kyle beat his arms against his chest in imitation of an ape and made a Tarzan cry.
Before she could draw the breath to laugh at him, he bent at the waist and rushed toward her, lifting her up and tossing her over his shoulder.
Marianne shrieked and laughed at his antics. Until she saw the sight of the pink wounds in his back. She had felt them while they made love, but this was the first time she had really seen them up close in the light of day.
Her heart thudding, she touched one long, ragged scar that ran just under his shoulder blade. “What is this from?”
“I think that one's from the razor-wire fence I slid under in Beirut about a year ago. Thank God I had my leather jacket on, or it would have done some serious damage.”
“From here, it looks like it did.”
“Nah,” he said, setting her back on her feet. “It's a flesh wound.”
She rolled her eyes. “You're like that psycho knight in
Monty Python and the Holy Grail,
aren't you? The one who has his arm lopped off at the shoulder who looks at it and goes, âAh, it's just a scratch.' ”
“Hey, in the neighborhood where I grew up, any sign of weakness was an invitation to a serious ass-whipping.”
“And where I grew up, we went to the hospital and got ice cream afterward.”
Kyle frowned at her words and the idyllic world she described. “I don't think such a place as that really exists.”
“Didn't you ever have anyone kiss your boo-boos?”
He thought about it a minute. “No. My mom was killed in a car wreck when I was five. There wasn't anyone around to kiss much of anything after that.”
She shook her head at him, then pressed her lips to the scar on his chest, the one just an inch to the side of his heart that was fresh and pink.
Closing his eyes, Kyle enjoyed the feel of her lips on his flesh. The strange warmth that rushed through him from her actions.
So this was tendernessâ¦
He liked it a lot more than he should.
They both jumped at the sound of someone calling from somewhere in the trees.
Kyle moved away from her long enough to scoop up their clothes and hand her hers.
“Wait here,” he said, pulling his jeans on.
Barefoot and shirtless, he reached for his weapon, only to remember he didn't have it with him.
Damn. His military training snapped, making him creep toward the sound of the intruderâ¦.
Marianne dressed quickly as she wondered what Kyle was going to do.
As soon as she was dressed, she headed off after him. No sooner had she reached the trees than she heard something snap.
A man yelped, then Kyle came running toward her, laughing.
He sobered instantly.
“What was that?”
“Nothing,” he said, clearing his throat. “It was just one of Tyson's men.”
“Let me down!” the unknown man's voice rang out through the trees.
She looked at him suspiciously. “What did you do?”
“I put him someplace where he can't follow us or tell Tyson where we are.”
Unsure if she should believe him, she frowned. “Are you sure about this Tyson?”
“The Chicken Man is deadly, love. I promise. Come on, we need to go quickly before he sends more guys after us.”
Still skeptical, she followed after him as he gathered their clams and shovel and headed off down the beach, far away from where he'd left “Tyson's” man.
They walked down the surf for quite some time before Kyle judged it safe again to dig clams. Once they had the bucket full, Kyle led her carefully up the rocky slope that led back to the wooded area of the island.
“Boo!” she said at one point, making him jump.
“Don't do that,” he said in a hushed, peeved tone.
“I couldn't help myself. You look so serious.”
“This is serious. One of those bastards could get his hands on you and take you away from me. That's the last thing I want.” The sincere anger in his voice set her back.
“Really?” she asked.
Marianne bit her lip as warmth gushed through her. She laced her fingers with his and let him sneak her back to their isolated cave, where they made steamed clams and made love until the very wee hours of the morning.
They made love until she was weak and breathless, but so well sated that she just wanted to sleep in the shelter of Kyle's arms for eternity.
For the next few days they hid in their cave, running during the daylight from Tyson's men and spending their nights getting to know each other and every detail of their lives.
There was nothing she hadn't shared with Kyle, and as she fell asleep snuggled against him on the fifth day, she knew all of this would end soon. She only had a few more days on the island, and then her fantasy was over.
Would Kyle still want her then, or would he put her on a plane and make ready for the next contest winner?
The anger and fear that question evoked startled her.
But what stunned her most was how much it hurt to think of letting Kyle go.
yle and Marianne sat on a blanket on the beach long after dark with a small fire crackling before them. He was leaning back against a large piece of driftwood with Marianne sitting between his raised legs, cradled against his bare chest while she wore his T-shirt.
He adored the sight of her in his clothes, which she had been wearing every day since he'd “kidnapped” her. There was no way he was going to let her return to her hotel room, where one of the others might be able to keep her from him.
Not that they could. He just didn't want to have to hurt someone unnecessarily. But he would hurt anyone who tried to pry her away from him even a minute earlier than he had to let her go.
She was braless underneath his shirt, and the thin material reminded him constantly of the fact that she was ready for him at any time. Her nipples were puckered nicely against the thin white cotton fabric, begging him to reach out and touch her while she had her head resting back against his shoulder. Her hips were nested firmly against his groin, and every time she moved, his cock jerked with awareness of her warm softness so close to him.
With the awareness of just how much he enjoyed her company and her body.
It was quiet now, with only the sound of the surf and fire to intrude on their peace.
But Kyle was concerned. The men from her side of the island were getting more resourceful and insistent that Marianne return to her “fantasy.”
He'd be damned if he was going to let her go. Not until she asked him to, and so far she seemed utterly content to stay with him.
But those pesky vermin kept running after them, and today they'd gotten a little smarter.
One of the buggers had almost caught up to them on the cliffs. But a few well-tossed grenades had sent the man running back the way he'd come.
Tomorrow Kyle would have to move them to a new location farther down the beach.
Marianne continued to play along with the idea of their pursuers being Tyson's henchmen out to get them, but by the light in her brown eyes whenever he spoke of it, he could tell she didn't believe him.
It was just as well. Tyson had been a stupid idea, but it had brought him the best moments of his life, and if she didn't call his bluff, he wasn't going to confess the truth to her.
He just wanted to enjoy what little time they had left.
Marianne snatched her stick up as her marshmallow caught fire. She quickly blew it out. Her long hair tickled his skin as she moved, stirring the air between them so that he could smell the fragrance of his shampoo in her hair.
He loved the smell of his scent on her. It touched him on a level that was profound and frightening.
Entranced, Kyle watched as she pulled the gooey mess from the tip of the stick and carefully took a bite.
The sight of her tongue flicking back and forth over her lips undid him.
His body burning, he pulled her close to taste the sugar on her lips. She moaned the instant he swept his tongue against hers.
“Are you burning your marshmallow, Kyle?”
He rubbed noses with her and inhaled her womanly scent before pulling away to see his stick and marshmallow buried deep in the fire. “It would seem so.”
She tsked at him. “And that was the last one, too. Shame on you.”
Shaking his head at her, he tossed his stick into the fire. They were running low on supplies. He'd snuck over to his hotel to get a few more essentials such as soap and shampoo while she'd slept last night, but the truth was they would have to go back to the real world all too soon.
Their time was so limited.
“If I have to die for my country, Joe, then I'd like to know what the hell I was living for.”
Those angry words haunted him now as he remembered saying them to Joe right after he and Retter had blown their way out of the Middle East.
Marianne was the answer, but he couldn't stay with her. His duties were elsewhere. Men like him didn't have liabilities, and Marianne Webernec was a huge liability. He didn't need to have the stress of worrying about the widow he would leave behind if he died.
Such things guaranteed death with cold-blooded certainty. In the field the best soldiers were the ones who had nothing to focus on or worry about except the job.
The job was everything.
But at least now he understood what it meant to be alive. To feel deeply for a woman and to know, while he was getting the crap shot out of him, why his job was so important.
It kept people like Marianne safe. She was no longer some faceless stranger. An abstract ideal.
He had something real to hold on to.
Closing his eyes, he leaned his cheek against hers and just held her in the quiet solitude, wishing that time could stand still and that he could make this moment last for eternity.
He never wanted to leave her.
He never wanted to leave this island.
Marianne sighed as she absorbed the sensation of Kyle's whiskers lightly scraping her skin. His strong arms were wrapped around her chest as if he were afraid to let her go.
She loved that feeling, but more than that, she suspected that she might actually love
These last few days they had shared so much of themselves with each other. She had told him of her fears of dying alone without ever having one spectacular moment to say Marianne Webernec had lived. That she was important to someone other than her rogue tomcat.
Kyle had listened and he, too, had shared his sad past with her. And with every nugget he had entrusted her with, she had fallen for him more.
No one had ever been closer to her. Never meant more to her. Kyle was wonderful.
She didn't know how much of what he'd told her was truth and how much was made up, but she didn't think he was lying about the important things, such as his best friend and mother dying. The pain in his eyes when he spoke of them was too real to be faked.
No, he had opened himself up to her, too.
Her heart thrilled at the thought. Warmed by him and his concern, she turned around to face him. The firelight played in his hair and across his face, making shadows along the sharp, handsome planes.
“You are so delectable,” she said.
He arched a brow at that.
Smiling wickedly, she reached for the button of his jeans.
“What are you doing?” he asked.
She unzipped his fly. “Why, I'm having my wicked way with you, sir.”
His swollen cock, nestled by his short, dark hairs, jutted out, arching back toward his stomach. Luckily his underwear was still drying from where they had washed their clothes earlier, so now he was all naked and exposed to her.
Mmm, how she loved the sight of him like that. Hard and ready for her. She ran her hand down the length of him and delighted in the way his cock followed the motion of her caress. The way it lifted and arched in reaction to her touch.
She brushed her hand along the sensitive tip, letting his wetness coat her fingers.
Kyle watched her with hooded eyes as his breathing changed to sharp, intense breaths.
Marianne licked her lips and lowered her head so that she could draw the tip of him into her mouth. She closed her eyes as she tasted the salty sweetness of him. How she loved the taste that was Kyle.
He hissed in reaction.
She growled deep in her throat as she took more of him into her mouth, while running her tongue around the large vein, and allowed the vibration of her voice box to add to his pleasure.
He cupped her face in his hands and ran his hands through her hair while she cupped the soft sac of him in her hand to massage him in time with her long licks.
Kyle's head swam as he leaned back to allow her more access to his body. There was nothing better than the sensation of her sweet little mouth teasing him. Her timidity was gone now after the days they had been together. She was bold with him.
And he liked that most of all.
She no longer hesitated to touch him. She'd learned he couldn't deny her anything. Whatever she wanted was fine by him, and in truth, he liked being her chew-toy.
She sucked him gently, then licked her way from the base to his tip. His pleasure was so intense, he swore he could see stars.
And when she reversed direction, it was all he could do to not cry out in ecstasy. Oh, the feel of her mouth on him, especially when she kept going and drew one of his balls into her mouth to suck and nibble.
He dug his heel into the blanket as he carefully balled his hand into a fist in her hair without hurting her.
She didn't take an ounce of mercy on him. Instead, she continued her bittersweet assault. Breathless, he ran his hand down her jaw while she returned to his cock and took him all the way into her mouth again.
The sight of her there was enough to finish him off. Unable to stand it, he let his orgasm tear through him. His entire body shuddered and convulsed.
Weak and spent, he collapsed back against the driftwood. Marianne kissed her way up his body slowly, as if savoring every inch of his skin as much as he savored hers.
He groaned when she paused at his nipple to draw it deep into her mouth and flick her tongue back and forth over it. “I love the way you taste,” she said, her breath scorching him.
“I love being tasted.”
Her smile made his heart pound even more.
Then she dug into the pocket of his jeans and pulled out a quarter.
“What are you doing?” he asked suspiciously.
He laughed nervously. “I'm not sure about this.”
“C'mon,” she said, wrinkling her nose at him. “It's something I've been wanting to do.”
When he hesitated, she shook her head. “Don't be a baby, Kyle. Trust me.”
Reluctantly he moved so that he could lie down on his stomach. “Okay,” he said slowly. “But I want to be able to use that quarter later. You know what I mean?”
Laughing, Marianne pulled his pants down to his buttocks. “You are such a worrywart. Relax.”
Suddenly very nervous, he lifted himself up on his forearms so that he could stare at her over his shoulder.
She stared at his butt, then took the quarter and bounced it off his left cheek.
“I knew it!” she said triumphantly. “Your butt is so tight the quarter actually bounces.”
She smiled even wider at him. “You have the tightest ass in the world, you know that?”
“Yeah, okay,” he said again. This had to be the strangest moment of his life, and when you considered the fact he spent a great deal of time with drug dealers and terrorists, that was saying something. “You do this a lot?”
“Nope,” she said, putting the quarter into her pocket. “I just wanted to test my theory.”
“And now that you have?”
Her look turned wicked. “I have plans for that tight butt cheek.”
She placed her hands on his cheeks and gave a hard, pleasurable squeeze before she leaned forward and took a nip in the same spot where she'd bounced the quarter.
Kyle laid himself down, content to let her have her way with his body.
Marianne never ceased to surprise him. He found the challenge of her the best part about all of this.
And as the night sped by, he realized something.
For the first time in his life, he was in love with someone.
Someone who had come to mean everything to him.
Someone he was going to have to leave behind forever.
YLE WOKE UP
inside the cave the next morning so sated that he was sure he must have died and gone to heaven. This last week with Marianne had been unlike anything he'd ever known.
The more he got to know her, the more he liked her.
No, it was more than like. She made him feel things he'd never felt for anyone.
And he adored the scent of her on his skin. The feel of her hands on his body. He loved waking up with her lying next to him.
Dreamy and warm, he rolled over to pull her close for some serious snuggling, only to find himself alone on the air mattress.
Frowning, Kyle opened his eyes to see the strangest sight of his life.
Someone had placed a toy rubber chicken on Marianne's pillow.
“Marianne?” he called, laughing at what he assumed was a prank. She had an odd sense of humor at times.
No one answered.
And now that he thought about it, where would she have gotten a toy chicken?
Extremely concerned, he sat up instantly. His gaze fell to the handwriting on it, and his blood ran cold.
If you want to see Marianne alive again, call Tyson Purdue, 212-555-6209.
What the hell?