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Authors: Hailey Edwards

Born of Fire (5 page)

BOOK: Born of Fire
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He stopped, but refused to turn. His voice was a frustrated sigh, “But you didn’t say yes either.” He stood there, more beautiful than any man had a right to be, baring more of himself than she was sure he was comfortable with.

“I work late,” she warned.

He spun around then, his boyish enthusiasm restored. “I’ll wait.” Then he disappeared to his cubby with a smile.

Once alone, Cilia tried to get focus on work. Instead, she was ashamed to admit, she began to fantasize about Fiach. She rested her chin in one hand and tapped her pencil absently with the other. She imagined him with great black wings filled with silky ebony feathers. She saw him ringed in red fire with black glittering eyes. Her eyes. She shook her head. As far as daydreams went, it was a good one, but Fiach hadn’t given her any reason to believe he was anything other than what he appeared to be.

A few hollow raps on the wall of her cubicle had Cilia twisting around in her chair.

Fiach’s jacket was missing, his sleeves rolled up over his muscular forearms. She noticed swirls of delicate black ink marking his deeply tanned skin. The collar of his shirt was open and she could just make out a hint of pattern there as well. She wondered where else the swirls traveled, but snapped back to attention when she noticed him watching her.

“Are you ready to go?” he asked.

“No, I…” the sentence hung unfinished as she realized they were the only two people left in the office. She jerked her head toward the window and saw the deep red and orange sunset looming on the horizon. She had whiled the day away fantasizing about him. Fiach watched her quietly. She stood and smoothed the creases in her skirt. “I guess I’m ready to leave. I didn’t realize it had gotten so late.”

He shrugged. “I enjoyed watching you work.” She couldn’t tell if he was teasing her or not. He reached out to pluck a pencil from behind her ear then tossed it on the desk. He offered her a hand and she took it. Fiach used their linked fingers to pull her to her feet.

She rose, aware of the scant inches between their bodies. “Are you hungry?” he asked.

Cilia thought about it. She had worked through lunch and she had the feeling Fiach had skipped as well. “Is that an invitation?”

He chuckled softly. “Just as question between friends. We are friends aren’t we?”

“Yes?” It came out as a question, but he accepted it happily.

“Friends can eat dinner together, right?”


“Then, as my friend, you won’t take any undo offense to my asking you to join me for dinner.” His brow ached, as if daring her to disagree.

She cursed. “You really are a lawyer, aren’t you? No one else could come up with that kind of convoluted reasoning.”

He rolled his shoulders in dismissal. “I am many things.”

“Aren’t we all?” she couldn’t help but add.

He grinned and she had the impression he understood much more than he was letting on. He used their intertwined fingers to guide her out of the office and onto the sidewalk.

* * * *

Fiach enjoyed dinner. It was such a rare occurrence he hated for it to end. As he paid the bill, he pretended not to notice when Cilia left the tip. Since they had each driven to work, they separated long enough to drive back to the brownstone. Fiach found himself waiting on the steps as Cilia parked and walked to where he perched on the wide stone stairs.

“I really enjoyed dinner,” he ventured.

She nodded and brushed past him into the lobby of the building. They took the small flight of stairs in silence. As they walked down the hall, Fiach let Cilia lead until they came to their respective doors. He opened his mouth to say goodnight just as she spoke.

“Would you like to come inside for coffee?”

He was tempted to say yes, but had the feeling she was offering more than an after-dinner drink, and knew it would be wrong of him to take it. Not if he wanted more than what they’d experienced yesterday. And he did.

“I’d better not.”

Relief and disappointment mingled on her face.

“We both have to be at work bright and early tomorrow.” He grinned. “Care to carpool?”

“That would be nice.”

An awkward silence hung between them. Fiach ended it by leaning down and pressing a kiss to her forehead. “Sweet dreams, Cilia.”

“Goodnight, Fiach.”

Cilia slipped inside her apartment and left him alone in the hall. He unlocked his door and stepped inside. The keys were tossed on the counter as he walked into his borrowed bedroom and stretched out across the mattress.

“She has enchanted me,” he said aloud.


Cilia curled up on the couch and drew an afghan around her shoulders. She picked up a book, but flipped through the pages unseeing, and let it drop from her hand. The remote dug into her side, so she flipped on the television to break the quiet. Her fingernails clicked on the plastic, debating.

The cordless phone rested on the side table. She picked it up and stared at it, willing it to ring, but nothing happened. Then inspiration hit. She had Stella’s number, but she had never given Fiach her phone number. It wouldn’t be forward of her to call and leave him a way to contact her. With his sister and nephew out of town he might need… She groaned and dialed the number before she could change her mind.

The line hummed. Her pulse raced through the first ring, then the second. Her palms started sweating and she wiped them on her pants. The third ring came and went and she began to feel foolish. On the fourth ring a deep voice purred into the receiver.


She stifled the wave of pleasure just from hearing his voice. “Hi, Fiach, it’s me.


He chuckled darkly. “So I assumed. I’d know your voice anywhere.” Then he paused. “Was there something you needed?”

She stuttered her response. “That’s why I was calling. I wanted to give you my number in case you needed anything.” She dutifully recited the digits and another awkward silence filled the line. She listened to his breath caressing his mouthpiece and her own quickened with arousal.

“So what’s going on across the hall?”

“Nothing much. What are you up to?”

His low growl lifted the hairs on her neck. “That is a loaded question.”

Cilia flushed red to her hairline. “I didn’t mean…”

He changed tactics. “Why did you invite me in tonight?”

She exchanged questions with him. “Why did you turn me down?”

A weighty sigh brushed over the line. “If I had gone into your apartment I wouldn’t have left until morning.”

“I thought you might not be interested in me that way after,” she cleared her throat,

“what happened. Last night in my kitchen.”

“I’ve thought about it. Much more than I should,” he admitted.

“I’m sorry I did that to you.”

His wry laugh loosened her guilt. “I’m only sorry I didn’t get to return the favor, minus the awkward accusations and embarrassment.”


“Cilia, I want you. So badly even the breathless sound of your voice over the phone makes my cock ache to be inside you.”

She choked on her words as her sex drowned in arousal. She couldn’t speak, her needs were too close to the surface. Her desires lay bare across their tenuous connection.

“Have you ever touched yourself, Cilia? Have you ever thought of me when you did?”

She made an involuntary sound in the back of her throat she knew he could only take as assent.

“Touch yourself now, Cilia. Give me that much. Let me know you’re feeling the same hunger I am.”

She whimpered, caught somewhere between fantasy and the reality she would have to face in the morning. She ached for him, for release. She balanced the phone between her cheek and shoulder and unbuttoned her pants.

“Did you take your pants off for me?” Damn, the man’s hearing must be phenomenal.

He must have sensed her embarrassment and spoke for both of them, deep guttural commands that made her melt.

“Fuck your pussy for me.”

She did as he asked and moaned as she brushed against her clit.

“I want you to slip a finger inside, real slow. Are you with me, Cilia?”

“Yes,” she murmured.

“Can you add another? God, I can almost feel how tight you are.”

She added a second finger and stretched herself open further.

“Use your other hand and rub your clit.”

She did as he asked and instantly her breath sharpened, her teeth grinding to hold back her sounds of pleasure.

“Let me hear you, Cilia. Let me know you like what we’re doing.”

Her fingers quickened their strokes, rubbing across her most sensitive skin while plunging deeply into her core with the opposite hand. She let him hear her groans, the sharp intake of her breath as she reached for her peak. Fiach’s voice became strangled and she imagined his large hands stroking his cock as she had. The heavily veined shaft straining for release as his palm slid up and down its length.

He cried out and she heard his labored breathing ease. The sound of his orgasm made her come. Tight muscles contracted over her buried fingers, cream coating them as she envisioned Fiach’s cock filling her, bathing her in the hot pulse of his desire.

For a moment the connection was forgotten, as each struggled to recover. As her head cleared, she couldn’t believe what she’d done. What he’d done to her with just his voice.

“Cilia,” he said. His voice was gentle and soothing, letting her know he understood her reserve. “It’s nothing to be ashamed of.”

“I’ve never done anything like that before,” she admitted. “I didn’t know it would be so… intense.”

She could hear the smile in his voice. “I think we’ve had enough excitement for one night. Unless you’d like me to cross the hall and tuck you in?”

Her face burned bright red. “No.” She amended, “I mean, that’s really not necessary.

I think you’re right. We should both get some sleep.”

“Sweet dreams, Cilia.”

“Goodnight, Fiach.”

She pressed the end button and tossed the phone to the foot of the couch. She couldn’t hide the smile stretching her face any more than she could cover the groan of embarrassment rumbling from her chest.

She wasn’t inexperienced, at least when it came to pleasuring herself, but she’d never done what she had tonight. She pulled the afghan up to her nose, as if hiding her happily sated smile, even from herself.

Chapter Five

“Good morning.”

Cilia took in Fiach’s business suit and easy smile. Her stomach clenched as he leaned over and pressed a chaste kiss on her forehead, much as he had last night, and offered her the cup of coffee in his hand.

“Good morning,” she murmured. “Thank you for the coffee.”

He jangled his keys. “Don’t want to be late for work on my second day.”

“You don’t have to do this, you know.”

He paused. “What do you mean?”

“This whole trying to earn my approval thing. I misjudged you. You’re a pretty good guy, morals notwithstanding.”

A single eyebrow rose. “Thanks. I think.”

“So are you still coming to work?” she asked.

“Are you?”

“Yes,” she replied.

“Then so am I. I don’t want to ruin my perfect attendance record.”

Cilia snorted and purposely avoided any conversation about the night before.

He reached down and casually took her hand. The action spoke of a comfortable habit more than calculated technique. The heat of his palm in hers felt wonderful, a decadent indulgence after so long without any contact at all. She had been careful to keep watch over him to make sure he wasn’t suffering any ill effects from their time together, but so far he seemed perfectly fine, and still her Phoenix was silent.

They stepped into the morning sun. She glanced up at Fiach and had the fleeting impression of the wings from her daydream nestled softly between his shoulder blades.

The vision was so clear she reached up to touch them, but only felt the soft fabric of his jacket. He looked at her and grinned. She blushed, embarrassed to have been caught touching him. She pretended to brush lint from his shoulder instead. He smirked and she ignored the feeling that he knew exactly what she had been doing.

Fiach opened the car door and she took her seat quietly. He rounded the hood and slid in on the driver’s side. His scent filled the car and her desire kindled, her pussy drenched with longing. He closed his eyes and inhaled. Cilia clamped her legs together tightly as heat crept up her neck to her cheeks.

Fiach’s hands tightened on the steering wheel. His head tipped back, his eyes closed.

“How do you do that? How do you make me want you with only your scent?”

Cilia cleared her throat. “I don’t know how to answer that.” She placed a hand over his white-knuckled grip. Her thumb smoothed over the tightened skin. He shivered beneath her touch.

“I don’t have the words to explain what you do to me.”

“What are you saying?”

“I want to be with you, only you,” his eyes opened and met hers. “I want to try to be what you need me to be.”

“Fiach, you can’t pretend to be something you’re not. It won’t work that way.”

His face softened. “I’m not the same person I was. For better or worse, you’ve changed me. Branded me.” His voice held no hope. “I’m yours.”

“You can’t mean that.” Fear and excitement warred in her tone.

Fiach released his hold on the wheel and cupped his hands around her face. He lowered his lips to hers and she melted. This kiss was full of desperate longing, instead of empty pleasure as their first kiss had been.

“I want you, Cilia,” he whispered over her lips.

She surrendered the will to deny him. Her hand lowered to where his erection strained against the fabric of his pants. He growled as she rubbed her heated palm over his hardened flesh. “Then have me.”

The offer was impulsive, but the desire for his touch was anything but. She had survived too many lifetimes unloved, unable to seek physical comfort from those around her. This one man broke through her defenses with kind words and thoughtful gestures until she was left bare before him. The stroke of his fingers blazed across her skin, and coaxed her slumbering Phoenix awake.

Fiach bolted from the car and pulled her onto the sidewalk in the blink of an eye. She would have asked how it was possible if his mouth hadn’t lowered to hers, his tongue thrusting inside to taste her.

BOOK: Born of Fire
5.76Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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