Authors: Laurann Dohner
Tags: #Romance, #Erotica, #Paranormal, #Vampires
Lethal bit back a curse, lifted his head and stared down his body to see what they’d used to keep him in place. Heavy-duty chains wrapped around his arms and legs numerous times. The combination of the drugs in his system and the sun having risen left him in a slightly weakened state.
Where is Blaron?
His friend had to know he’d gone missing when he hadn’t returned to the club. They’d have gathered everyone to hunt him down. Lethal clenched his teeth to smother a growl while he glared at the lass. Whoever she was, she had no idea what kind of trouble she’d taken on. The club would pay any ransom for his return but she wouldn’t live long enough to spend it. Hell, he didn’t even want it to get that far. No one could ever discover a wee lass had taken him captive. He’d never hear the end of the jokes.
He allowed the anger to build until he knew his power showed in his eyes as he concentrated on the lass. The stench of human males still clung to the bench, adding insult to injury. He’d wake the female and take control of her mind, make her release him. He’d have to place a call to help Blaron locate him. It would be too dangerous to stay until sunset. Some of their wolves would have to come and move him during daylight hours.
Revenge would be sweet when he was free. His nose told him the lass was type A positive. He wouldn’t kill her—he never harmed women—but she would know his wrath. He’d give her a scare she’d never forget after he took some of her blood. Then he’d send her on her way with orders to never go near the club again.
First, though, he’d have to make her bring him a phone. It would only be a matter of waiting for help to come at that point.
He rattled the chains again. Her heart rate increased as she sucked in air and her head jerked up. Lethal saw her heart-shaped face and instantly changed his mind about her fate. She reminded him of an angel. He would do more than just take a little blood. His captor was one bonny lass.
Lacey jerked awake, alarmed, and nearly fell out of her chair when her gaze locked on her prisoner. A pair of intense, dark-blue eyes met hers. They narrowed and she shifted her focus away from them to his straining biceps, which tested the restraints. He obviously worked out to get that kind of muscle mass. The thin material of his tank top didn’t hide six-pack abs bunched from the effort.
“Don’t try giving me the glow-eyes routine. Mind control hasn’t work on me yet and you’re not going to be able to snap the chains. Others have tried and failed. You’re not my first vamp.” She doubted that he’d listen to her advice but she gave it anyway. “You’re who I thought you were.”
“What do you want?”
His deep voice startled her. He had a slight accent, maybe Scottish or Irish. She glanced at his eyes, his features, and the long black strands of hair that grazed the concrete floor. He obviously had a naturally bronzed complexion unless he’d very recently been turned. He sure wasn’t sunbathing anymore.
“How much money will it take to get you to release me?” His voice deepened with anger. “Just name your price, lass.”
She leaned forward, met his intense stare and licked her lips. She noticed that he glanced down when her tongue darted out but his gaze returned to her eyes. “You want to know what it’s going to cost you for your freedom?”
“I want my sister back, you son of a bitch.”
His black eyebrows shot up and surprise widened his eyes. “I didn’t take her.”
Lacey rose to her feet. “How do you know?”
“I’m not a kidnapper and I’m not holding any women against their will.”
Anger surged as she raked her gaze up and down his big body. He’d probably have killed her already if he wasn’t restrained. She was tired, heartsick of the life she led, and hated how drastically her world had changed in the past three years. She hesitated before she climbed onto the bench, lifted her leg and straddled his hips.
He sucked in air, obviously surprised again, and watched her with those beautiful sapphire eyes. She put her hands on his chest, careful not to get near enough for him to lunge and bite her. She couldn’t ignore the firm feel of his body under her fingers and palms.
“Do you ever think about your victims’ families? The people who love them? The way we grieve when their bodies are discovered?” She paused, studying his features for any sign of remorse. “Do we even count to assholes like you? Are we just sheep to slaughter? Disposable meals to toss into the garbage when you’re done feeding?”
His handsome face tensed, his lips pressed together, and wariness narrowed his eyes. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“You do.” She lifted a hand off him and pointed above them. “See that? It’s a skylight that is currently closed.” She twisted her wrist, made sure he could see the time displayed on her watch, and planted her hand back on his chest. “Dawn came about an hour ago. The weather report promised a nice sunny day.”
A cold look settled into his eyes as he glared at her. He masked his features, hid any emotion, and she knew he understood the implied threat. The silence stretched between them as they regarded each other.
“I don’t kill,” he rasped. “I feed but leave them alive.”
“Sure you do.”
“Do you want to talk to them? My cell phone is inside my inner jacket pocket, unless you got rid of it.” He jerked his head toward the floor where his jacket had been tossed earlier. “You’ll also find the number of a doctor in there. Put it on speakerphone and I will get him to tell you about the blood he has delivered to me. I rarely feed from live people and the ones I do are fine. They are willing. I just take what I need, with their consent, and always leave them alive.”
Lacey inwardly cringed. She hadn’t checked his pockets. Most bloodsuckers weren’t into technology. Maybe they thought it would get them caught or somehow reveal their nests. None of the others had ever had cell phones. She really hoped no one was tracing the phone. It was her first instinct to get up and smash the thing but she resisted. It would be bad to show fear so she climbed down, located it and turned it off. She would destroy the phone right after she took care of him. She resumed her position astride his body.
“I’m not stupid enough to use your phone. They’d track the signal. I know some of you hire thugs to protect you during the day while you sleep. Criminals don’t care what kind of monsters they’re protecting as long as the price is right.”
It suddenly hit her that he was very much awake though the sun had risen. Their knowledge of bloodsuckers wasn’t as extensive as she’d like but one thing was clear—he wasn’t some newbie vampire. Only the older, stronger ones had fought back against the teams who’d hit unguarded nests during the day.
He’s a master. Shit! We really scored.
Her next thought wasn’t as pleasing.
The rest of his nest will really be pissed that we got him and will want payback.
“I’m not a killer.”
“You’re a vampire.”
He didn’t respond. He didn’t need to, though, since they both knew the truth. His gaze flicked to the ceiling before returning to her. “I don’t kill and I don’t have your sister. I don’t kidnap women and make them blood slaves.”
“She’s dead. One of your kind tore out her throat and tossed her broken body away.” Pain squeezed her heart. “She was just a baby—nineteen—and so sweet she wouldn’t hurt a fly. The son of a bitch grabbed her by her car outside the library. She was going to be a pediatrician. She loved kids and wanted to have half a dozen of them.”
“Shit. I’m sorry.”
He was good, she’d give him that. Regret filled his steady gaze. Some of her anger eased but not much. She knew he wasn’t the one who’d killed Beth. The vamp who’d grabbed her had been caught on camera and he was smaller than the one she sat on. The image had been blurry—the killer had run through the parking lot, snatched her sister, and they’d both disappeared in seconds.
“I don’t kill people. I know you don’t believe that but it’s true. We’re people too—different, yes—and some of us are bad while some are good.”
“And you’re a good guy? A nice, sweet, friendly bloodsucker?” She arched her brows and smiled coldly. “Sure.” She perused his body from the waist up. “You’re just a big, strapping teddy bear with fangs, right?”
“I don’t harm humans.”
She sat up straighter and eased her hands off his chest. She peeled her black turtleneck sweater over her head and dropped it to the floor. Her hand drifted to her hair, pulled it away to reveal her neck, and she tilted her head enough to show him the column of her throat. His gaze riveted there then drifted to her bra, her breasts, before meeting her gaze again. The blue of his eyes seemed to grow even more intense and beautiful.
“Hungry? Show me the real face of a monster because I know you’re dangerous.”
His breathing changed, quickened, and to her shock something stirred between their bodies where she sat. She glanced down and then jerked her gaze up to gape at him.
“You get hard-ons?”
“You’re very attractive, half undressed, straddling me, and I’m a man.”
“I’m a vampire. There’s a difference. See my chest rising? I breathe air and I’m not immune to a beautiful lass.”
He didn’t hiss at her, his fangs didn’t extend as she’d seen with other vampires—not that she’d taken the time to talk to many of them. Instead he calmly watched her without struggling. He didn’t stare longingly at her throat as if wanting to feed from her, the way others had, though she knew he did too. His gaze kept drifting to her breasts.
She adjusted her position on him, feeling the hard length of his cock trapped between their bodies, but tried to ignore it. It shocked her that he could even get an erection. Maybe feeding or wanting to feed was the only thing that aroused them. It piqued her interest just a tiny bit. If he wasn’t so attractive, she wouldn’t have found that fact fascinating in the least.
Am I really that shallow?
“So you’re just a guy, huh?”
Three years of pain, loneliness and heartbreak weighed heavily on her. Beth’s death had changed her life in every way. Her fiancé had abandoned her. She hadn’t dated after being dumped, hadn’t allowed anyone to get close to her, not even her team.
They’d lost a few members over the years. If someone grew careless on a job there were no second chances when mistakes were made around vampires. Caring about anyone else hurt too much when members died.
Her gaze lingered on the sexy body under her. Beth had died because some asshole had been hungry. They just took what they wanted without bothering to consider the ramifications to their victims or their families. Why shouldn’t they be used too? The bitterness might be getting to her, she admitted that. It was growing increasingly difficult to get out of bed every day.
She held his gaze and his eyes seemed to actually glow. A slight tingling sensation made her a little dizzy. She’d noticed it building but it wasn’t the start of a headache. It was something else. She frowned, trying to break eye contact, but couldn’t.
“Easy lass,” he whispered. “You don’t want to hurt me. I understand your need for vengeance but there are other ways.”
She didn’t have the stomach or the desire to torture him for revenge. The vamp sure couldn’t bring Beth back but she would show him how it felt to be helpless and used. Vivid images of how she could do that popped into her head. They were shocking. Erotic.
What the hell?
She glanced around, as if afraid someone else might see them too. More images poured into her mind—of
and her. Suddenly, for some reason, it made sense.
Three years of loneliness had been hell. There was a lot she missed about having someone in her life but one thing topped the list—sex. She bit her lip and ran her hands down his chest to his waist, tugging at his shirt.
“Let me help you,” he murmured as he arched his back.
She glanced at his face. “Shut up.”
He had beautiful golden skin and he tensed, revealing those well-defined abs again. They looked much more appealing in the flesh. He was really striking, would have made a fortune as a model or male stripper, and his warm skin felt alive as she traced her fingertips over each muscle. It felt good to touch someone again, to be that close to a man, or what passed for one. She’d really missed intimacy of any kind.
She reached for his belt, unfastened it, and pulled it free from the loops. One of the other things she’d missed was exploring a man by gliding her palms over his skin and all his wonderful reactions to that. The way his muscles tensed, the soft sounds as his breathing changed, and just…his warm skin against hers.
Memories flashed through her mind of her former fiancé. Their relationship had not survived the tears and depression she’d suffered in the aftermath of losing Beth. It had been cold consolation to realize she was better off without someone that shallow once he’d delivered his lame breakup speech.
“Lass, what do you really want from me?” His voice was deeper.
She met his gaze. “I’m using you. You need to know what it feels like to have someone take something from your body and not give a damn that you can’t stop them.”
Her fingers traced the zipper of his pants, exploring the hard outline of his cock trapped beneath it. It felt pretty big. She scooted down a few more inches on his thighs, unfastened the snap of his pants, and liked the way he sucked in air as he gasped.
“Lass? Release me.”
“Shut up or I’ll do something painful.” He was blowing her enjoyment a bit by reminding her that what she was doing was wrong. She was molesting another person and excusing her actions because he wasn’t really human.
Silence reigned. She opened his pants, spread them apart, and was surprised when his cock sprang free. No underwear. Even his cock was beautiful—thick, perfectly shaped and large. She hesitated before slowly reaching for it. She hadn’t meant to take it that far but he was too tempting. Her fingers explored velvet-soft skin wrapped around a steel-hard shaft.
It jerked in her hand as it lengthened even more. She felt butterflies in her belly. She closed her eyes while she continued stroking gently up and down his shaft, faded memories surfacing of what it would feel like to sink down on a man and take him inside her body. Her nipples grew stiff and her heart rate increased.
Why shouldn’t I?
She opened her eyes to study his face. He no longer protested and actually lifted his hips a little, arching against her hand. His breathing quickened and his face was a little flushed. She wasn’t blind to the signs of passion.
He enjoyed what she did to him but she wanted more. No way would she get him off while she suffered sexual frustration. She bit her lip, debating. The doors were locked from the inside. No one could enter unless she let them in. No one would ever have to know what happened between them. She sure as hell wouldn’t confess to anyone on the team.
Oh hell. I’ve gone this far. Fuck it. No…fuck him.
She released his stiff cock, swung her leg over him, stood and kicked off her shoes. She knew he stared at her but she refused to look at him. She quickly shed her jeans and underwear before facing the vampire.
His gaze lingered on her bare lower body and his cock jerked again, rising slightly from where it rested heavily against his belly. If she didn’t know with absolute certainty, she’d swear he was human. She straddled him again and her ass settled over the cool leather stretched across his muscular thighs.