Branding A Legacy (A Silver Star Ranch Novel) (16 page)

BOOK: Branding A Legacy (A Silver Star Ranch Novel)
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Silver Star is dark and only lit up by the moon. Seconds tick by and silence once again is my friend, but only for a few more seconds until I hear crunching gravel, and instead of trying to be a brave cowgirl, I sprint for the window that I know is Marvel’s.

Even though Jake is Maverik’s dog, he stays the night at Granddad’s, sleeping right on the inside of his door. I’ve heard several funny stories about one of the boys sneaking back in only to be caught by Jake. He’s the funniest dog. He’ll be by Maverik’s side before the crack of dawn.

Several more footsteps fill the night air, and I know now it’s not my imagination. Using my knuckles, I lightly tap on Marvel’s window, not wanting to wake Granddad or upset Jake into a barking fit. After several attempts there’s no answer. Pulling my phone from my pocket, I text Marvel, and then immediately call him.

“Hello.”

His voice is off, but I’m not sure how to place it.

“Are you home?”

“Yeah.”

“Open your window.”

“Uh?”

“I’m outside your window.”

“Why?”

My patience has run out with a cold chill now attacking my body, and my scared cat nerves are on high alert.

“I’m outside your window, butthole. Please let me in.”

I count his steps as I hear him pound his way across his room. The window creaks and cracks before his gorgeous face appears on the other side. The light of the moon illuminates all of his scars and showcases his sad brown eyes. I first notice his puffy eyes and then how red they are.

“Gonna let me in?”

“Clover, it’s not a good time.”

“Marvel, I need you right now. I’m not walking back across that damn road.” I shove my hand up in his face and wait for him to take it.

As each second ticks my heart sinks a bit lower until I nearly feel it break.

“You are becoming too feisty for your britches, little girl.” He lets out a little smirk before gripping my hand.

I center my foot on a large stone under his window and then nod to him. I’m quite impressed with my strength as I leap up onto the window jamb. The motion mimics the same one of getting up on a horse. Once up in the room, I lunge forward, not able to find my two feet underneath. I’m careful not to step on or fall into Marvel’s bad leg.

My hands fall to his bare chest. Marvel’s damp hair brushes my forehead as I look up into his eyes.

“You never texted back.”

He only shrugs.

“Want to talk about it?”

He shakes his head side to side with his long hair sweeping over his brows. I think his longer hair that naturally curls is sexy as hell, but I’ve heard Granddad riding him about going to town for a haircut.

“What happened?”

“Just experiencing more fucking devastation that streams from my choices from the night from hell.”

“It’s not your fault, Marvel.”

“You don’t even know what I did or what happened, and I’ll never let you know.”

“I’m here for you.” I gently push back on his chest until he’s forced to sit down on his bed, and this is when I notice he’s wearing nothing but a loose towel. I let my vision linger a bit longer than I should on his lower half. His body is more toned each day and is just proof of him pushing his body to the limits.

“I love you.” I tilt his chin up, forcing him to look at me. “Do you hear me?”

He doesn’t answer and only clenches his eyes shut. “She’s pregnant with Weston’s baby and heartbroken.”

It takes me a few seconds to catch up, and I know he’s opening up about tonight.

“The look on her face when she saw me killed me. It should’ve been me that died, not him.”

“Why?”

He doesn’t answer. I cup his face and dig into his flesh, making him feel my presence.

“You should’ve died, huh? Given up your whole family and me? Do we mean that little to you, Marvel?”

Anger boils within me and I let go of him, stepping back. The action seems so much more than it really is. I feel like I’m losing him and don’t know what to do or even how to react, so I decide to give him his space.

“I’ll leave you alone,” I whisper.

The window is still open from my entrance and I crawl right back out it. The sounds in the night don’t affect me or even get my attention. The boogie monster could be chasing me right now and I wouldn’t even scream or run.

“Come back.”

I look back to Marvel peering out his window at me.

“Please, I need you, baby.”

“Are you sure you want company right now?”

He silently nods to me, making my decision an easy one, but this time I don’t take his hand as I heave myself up through his window. It’s a mark of independence and courage that he’s instilled in me.

“I won’t put up with you being mean to me again, Marvel. I’ll walk away when it happens and give you your space. I can’t begin to understand what you’re going through, but I want to be here for you.”

“I’m sorry.”

“Shut up.” My voice is full of rage and even spooks me as it comes out of me. “Just let me love you. That is all I ask.”

“Weston is dead because of me and now has a baby on the way. It’s not fair.”

“You’re right. It’s not fair.”

I have him in the same position as before, on the bed with me between his legs cupping his cheek.

“It’s more pain than any physical wound.”

I don’t respond and let him go on about Weston and how much he misses him and listen to stories from their past. His tears roll down his face and land on my shirt as I remain standing, holding him.

My hands rub circles on his back as he talks. When his words are gone and his tears dried up, there’s silence between us. I give him his time to regroup.

“Are you okay, baby?” He looks up to me with even more puffy red eyes.

I nod down to him.

“Why did you come over?”

I beam down at him. “I wanted to see the inside of your room.”

“I’m sorry I didn’t text back.”

“I’ll always hunt you down, cowboy.”

He slaps my ass hard and then proceeds to cup each of my cheeks in his hands, letting out a slight a growl. I see my man morph back to his normal self within a matter of seconds.

“You’ve seen the inside of my room before, Clover.”

“I know.” I shrug, feeling flares of heat coursing through my cheeks.

“Clover.” Marvel drawls out my name, picking up on my embarrassment. I feel his arms glide up to my waist and tighten.

“I came over…”

He quirks up an eyebrow at me, pushing the topic. “Go on, baby.”

“I’m ready,” I whisper.

“Ready for what?” He continues to push me over the cliff of my comfort zone.

I reach over and flip off the light, leaving nothing but darkness between us.

“I want you, Marvel. I’m ready.”

In one swift movement, I’m lying on top of him with his hands roaming up and down my back.

“You want to eat cotton candy in my bed, Clover? Is that what you’re telling me? He catches my bottom lip in his teeth and gives it a gentle tug.

“Stop.” I push up off his chest, sitting straight up.

Marvel flips on a lamp that’s on his nightstand and then his hand snakes back to me, resting upon my thigh.

“What? Now are you asking for riding lessons, cowgirl?”

I can’t help but let out a hardy laugh.

“See, little toots, it’s really easy. All you have to do is straddle the stud—and by stud, I mean your horse, of course—put your feet in the stirrups, and then grab the reins.” He places my hands on his chest and grins up at me.

“Marvel, stop. You know that’s not what I’m saying.”

“Then tell me, Clover.”

It takes me a few minutes to gather my thoughts. I know I’ve told him several times that I love him. We’ve shared laughs and tears together, but I need more of him. All of him.

“I want you to be my first, Marvel.” I trail my fingers down his massive scar on his chest. “This is what brought me to you. Your blood pumped through my fingers as you clung to life, and now we’re here. I want all of you, Marvel Slatter.”

20
Marvel

C
owboys don’t cry
. They dust shit off and move on in life. My two older brothers have been prime examples of this, holding their heads up and continuing to ride. I’ve cried and cried tonight while she holds me in her arms.

The second the tender flesh of her fingers brushed over my scar I shuddered and felt at home again with her. Seeing Hailey wasn’t easy, and learning the news she’s expecting threatened to undo me until Clover crawled through my window. Then her profession of wanting me as her first completely destroyed me.

I flip her over on her back, pressing her into the mattress, all joking aside along with tears. Only a fierce passion bounces between us. Neither of us exchange another word as I take the lead. I didn’t miss the fact she referred to me as her first. The agents’ encouragements of getting her involved more to bring Saint out also dances around in my mind, but ultimately in the end it’s my desire to have all of Clover that wins.

I trail kisses up her neck and then down her collarbone, waiting for her to quake or show some sign of being scared, but she never does. Her hands roam all over my body. Her fingertips undo the towel that’s settled low on my hips. I even up the score and begin tearing at her clothes. I plan and know beyond a doubt that I have to use self-control and slow it down once we get closer. But right now I can’t get her pants off fast enough.

I sit back and drag off her skinny jeans, cussing the damn things on how tightly they hold her curves. Then I raise her shirt over her head and toss it to the side. In the darkness, my fingers fumble with the clasps on her bra before it comes undone. Her shoulders are so sexy in the dim light of the room. I take a second to admire them before I slip the thin straps off her shoulders.

Clover sits up a little higher, letting her final piece of clothing that stands between us tumble down.

“I don’t deserve you, Clover.”

My lips are on hers before she has the chance for rebuttal or protest. This time, when I cover her body with mine, all of our flesh connects for the first time ever. Nothing between us—no clothing, no angry feelings, no reservations. We’ve been torn down and brought together. The thought of me being her first ignites a fire inside me that I’ve never felt.

This feeling is ever growing familiar with her since she seems to do this to me more often than not.

“I’ll try to go slow, Clover.”

Her nails dig into the top of my shoulders as I dip my head lower and pay close attention to her beaded nipples.

“Don’t go slow. I want you, cowboy, all of you.”

I growl and sink my teeth into her flesh. She has no idea what she does to me and the ways she has the complete ability to undo every single part of me with just a simple touch or moan. Clover can unleash the best and worst in me without even knowing it.

I will myself over and over to keep the pace slow as we kiss each other hard. I do my best to muffle her loud growls and moans with my mouth as I get her ready for ‘all of me’ as she referred to it. Controlling my own desire soon becomes too difficult for me when I feel her hand snake down between us.

“This is my first.” Clover makes eye contact with me. “All of my firsts with you, Marvel.”

Her petite hand wraps around my raging dick as she begins to stroke it. The simple touch of her hand and the wonder dancing in her eyes is all too much. I throw my head back, staring at the ceiling and willing myself to slow the fuck down in this moment.

I reach down between us and join her in working over both of us. When my fingers go into action, Clover slows down, arches her back, and lets out a cry. I’m too far away from her mouth to mute the sounds this time, and I’m happy because it’s a glorious noise.

Her cheeks are flushed red as she breathes heavily. Clover can only get out a word or two between her moans, and I know she’s close to a feeling she’s never felt. Part of me is scared that once she experiences it, she’ll be done for the night, and I need so much more right now. I could drown in all things her right now. She takes it all away…the pain, anger, and vengeance dissipate when she’s around.

“Mar…Cow…”

The beginning of my name and nickname roll off her tongue, but she’s unable to produce a word, let alone a complete thought as she arches even further into my bed. I don’t need her speaking my name, because her facial expression is the only thing I need to know she’s just let go.

Our bodies stick together as my sweaty body collapses back down on her. I plant my elbows on either side of her head, determined to watch her every step of the way. I go to open my mouth to let her know it’s okay and that we can stop here if she wants, and as if she reads my mind herself she covers my lips with the pad of her finger.

Her legs spread wider, allowing me to settle in. My hips thrust up with just the sole purpose of sealing our bodies together. She wraps her legs around my waist, locking her feet on the back of my ass. I can’t help but smile at how ready she is.

I sneak one hand down between us to line us up, and when I do I see her in every step of the way. The frightened Clover the night she found me. The panicked Clover when she had her hand placed over the bleeding wound on my chest. The nervous wreck nurse who was so easily intimidated. The woman I made cry and took all my hate and anger out on. The gorgeous woman who could light up my world. And finally, my girlfriend lying underneath me with wide eyes and a nervous smile covering her face.

I know I should ask her again if she’s ready, but I’m too greedy and need her now. I’m not that big of an asshole to rush it, but I sure as hell start it as I ease in, slowly watching each of her reactions. I study her like an open book, examining each of her expressions under a fine microscope. My feelings vanish in the mix of hers as I focus on only her. Pain flashes across her features in one moment causing me to still but quickly vanishes as another emotion takes over.

She doesn’t moan or try to scream my name this time. Her hands wrap around my biceps with her fingernails digging into my skin. The stinging sensation only reminds me to keep the pace steady and slow. It goes against everything my body is screaming at me. It’s a sensation I can compare nothing to. The sweetest ride, gold buckles, or even the fastest horse on the planet have nothing on this.

My vision blurs for a sliver of a second and refocuses, and when it does, everything is clear. It’s so clear my eyes sting and I blink a couple of times before I see it all laying before me. Clover is my now, my future, and my forever. No matter how messy and fucked up my life and situation is, she’s here with me for the long run.

“I love you, my little cowgirl.”

She’s hated the nickname Nurse Nancy. I’d even admit I taunted her with it more than anything else, but now she’s my little cowgirl forever. Her nails dig in even deeper, coupled with a few moans as I feel her hips buck up to meet mine. A steady rhythm develops and I can feel our past, future, and history being written upon both of our hearts.

BOOK: Branding A Legacy (A Silver Star Ranch Novel)
2.37Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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