Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Lucas by Eliza Gayle


Chapter One



Lucas looked around the dank cell, trying to see her. He couldn’t, but he smelled the woman’s fear and the stench made him sick to his stomach.
She paced back and forth outside his door. Her boots squeaked against the concrete floor with every turn, making the kind of noise that aggravated him—like nails on a chalkboard. Suddenly, she turned, stepping into the single ray of moonlight coming in through the grime-covered window, gripped the cell bars, and bared her teeth. “Gunn, you’ll tell me what I want to know about your clan or suffer the consequences,” she growled.
“This is getting really old, you asking the same questions over and over, me giving the same answer every time. How many days are we going to do this?”
“Until you give me the real answers, you sick son of a bitch.” An untempered rage surged from her.
He rose from his cot in the corner of his private hell hole, edging his way through the dark shadows to her position. The closer he got, the more her anger pushed back at him, cementing his thoughts about her reckless behavior. Emotions seemed to drive her, making her a weaker opponent but also an unpredictable one. This close he detected something else, a subtle scent he recognized but couldn’t place for the life of him. In time he would, and for now time was all he had.
“You’re pushing the wrong man.” She jumped back, catching herself with her hands before she landed on her ass. “I know nothing about the stupid fairytales you keep going on about. I never believed in the old Scottish lore telling of shapeshifters and magic,” he purred, the words edged in steel.
The guard shook her head, her tense facial features betraying the potent rage she kept barely restrained. “I already know all about your kind as well as the existence of other clans with different abilities.” Obvious disgust dripped from her voice. “It’s only a matter of time before I have what I want and you’ll regret not cooperating.” Her lips quirked up in a vicious smile.

The sound of gravel crunching under the tires of Kira's vehicle and the wheel jerking aimlessly in her hands shattered the vision. Her car careened off the road while her heart leaped in her throat with sudden panic as she struggled to refocus on driving and prevent a crash. She pulled at the steering wheel, trying to swerve back on the pavement. Cold liquid sloshed at her feet when her water bottle slammed to the floorboard. Nothing she tried made a difference and she ended up smashing into the soft sand embankment.
What the hell was that?
She clutched the steering wheel tightly to still her trembling arms, and sucked in air. Not only had she seen what another had, now she’d been inside his head. With the onset of her mating call, her visions had become so weird lately she didn’t know what to believe anymore.
I’ve got to get a grip.
She reached for her other, unopened bottle, which had rolled out of sight. After searching the floor of the car, her hand finally wrapped around cool plastic underneath the front seat. She twisted the top off and gulped down the water, hoping to soothe the aching dryness of her throat.
Normally her Tallan came to her when she had specific problems to work through, enabling her to solve tense situations quickly. She’d been using her psychic gift of vision since puberty with extreme clarity, but for several days now she’d dreamt of a man she’d never met. A man who reached out to her night after night, gripping her with sexual desire so strong she’d had difficulty coping. She didn’t have many details about him, but she knew, with every ounce of instinct she possessed, what he was.
Her mate.
This vision was different than the others. This hadn’t been about being drawn together for hot and sweaty sex. No, he’d been locked in a cage, angry and fighting for control.
Is he really in trouble? Or are my visions deteriorating faster than I thought?
Nothing made sense anymore. Least of all a member of their Scottish clans in trouble. They’d existed in her valley for over a century, virtually undetected, and hadn’t had any lasting problems she knew of. But hell, never say never.
Kira’s cell phone rang, a shrill noise that made her jump in her seat. She reached across the passenger’s seat and picked it up. No need to check caller ID, she knew who was on the other end.
“Hi, Mom,” she murmured.
“Kira, honey, is everything okay? I sensed a bit of trouble.”
Kira rolled her eyes and inwardly groaned. “No, Mom, everything is fine. I dozed off and ended up on the side of the road, so I think I’ll stop for the night and get some sleep”.
“Are you all right?” She could hear the tension buzzing in her mother’s voice.
“Yes, Mom. Nothing to get worried about,” Kira assured her. “What about you? Has anything happened since I left?” She tried to be subtle. If someone had gone missing from one of their clans, the word should already be spreading and a hunt would likely be organized.
“No, I’m fine. I just wanted to check up on you.”
With a nagging suspicion, she sensed her mom was lying. “Uh—okay then I’m going to go now and see about finding a place to stop.”
“Call me when you arrive in California so I’ll know you’re okay.”
Her mother seemed even more paranoid than usual. So not a good sign. “Bye, Mom. I’ll call you tomorrow.”
As she began to put the phone down, she heard her mom speak to her stepdad solemnly. “You were right, it’s her time—”
Oh, just fucking great.
So much for hiding her troubles. Her stepfather was sure to run straight to the Council to inform them her mating cycle had begun. That bastard would love to see her eliminated. The clock was ticking now. She had to solve her problem, and solve it now.

* * * *

Lucas Gunn lay staring at the ceiling of his cell. He had so many unanswered questions, and his frustration tolerance had peaked hours ago. His skin burned and his muscles ached, making him afraid he wouldn’t be able to hold back his shift for much longer if he didn’t get his adrenaline level down.
He knew they watched his every move, he’d found the tiny cameras the first night here. So shifting in his cell was out of the question since he couldn’t afford to expose his clan, and possibly several more. As Guardian, it was his duty to maintain clan secrets above all else. Time was running out, though, and eventually his body would force the shift.
The sweltering temperature inside the building left him edgy and sleep deprived. His cougar stirred, demanding release. He flung himself from the cot and stripped bare, anything to relieve the oppressive heat. Unable to resist the urge, he paced from one end of the small cell to the other. Unbidden images of cool water from a mountain stream, green grass under his paws, and a breeze rustling through his fur rose unexpectedly in his mind. All of which he forced away on a snarl of rage.
He lay back down and focused on what he must do. He’d been trying for days to find a telepathic link to one of his kind, but they were apparently too far away. Ever since the binding spell the fucking witch had used to capture him, he’d only found one person to reach: his mystery woman. The sexy redhead that came to him every time he slept. The only thing he knew for sure about her was the fact that she drove him wild with lust, and if he ever laid hands on her she’d be in all kinds of trouble.
Lucas let down his barriers, opening his mind to any psychic residue that could lead him to a connection with someone able to help. Closing his eyes and relaxing his body one muscle at a time, he willed himself to drift into sleep.

* * * *

Lucas glanced across the room, his attention drawn to the beautiful woman standing in the doorway. Ah, she was back. Her shoulder-length, russet hair had multi-colored highlights of red and gold that shimmered under the lights. He wanted to run his fingers through the thick strands and watch them dance as the soft silk brushed against his skin.
She wore a simple tank top and running shorts that may have looked drab on anyone else, but they hugged and skimmed her lush figure to perfection.
As she turned to scan the room, he caught a glimpse of a delectable, full ass that caused his groin to tighten. Compelled to learn more about this woman, he pushed himself off the wall where he lounged. Sure he wanted her identity, but they both knew without a doubt it was lust guiding their actions here.
Turning, she met his gaze, and her blue eyes sparkled with awareness.
Neither attempted to break eye contact as Lucas stepped in front of her. “I’m glad you’re back.”
She tilted her head and stared at him as if trying to find an answer to an unknown puzzle. “Do you know why I’m here? And where is here, by the way?”
Her voice flowed like warm oil across his skin, and Lucas wondered what he could say to keep her from turning around and walking out of his dream. He stepped closer, absorbing the heat radiating from her and inhaling her sweet, musky scent. That was one heightened sense he loved dearly because there was nothing else like the scent of an aroused female.
His heart rate accelerated as he spoke. “You’re here because I called for you, but I’m not sure where here is. Nothing looks familiar. Maybe neutral ground for us?”
“Then tell me why?” she whispered.
Her eyes glowed with a heady mix of confusion and desire, a look that stirred his blood, and one he’d become accustomed to during their visits. She wanted him, that was obvious, yet she held herself back from him. Her lips pursed together, so full and ripe his mind immediately wandered to thoughts of them wrapped around his cock while she knelt in front of him, her hands tied behind her back. A good and proper submissive position.
“Maybe we need each other.” He couldn’t resist reaching up and lightly stroking her mouth. She gasped at his touch, but her eyes burned with unmistakable lust, further confirming his belief she might welcome his brand of control. Brushing his lips against hers for a quick taste, Lucas found himself unable to stop from grazing those soft lips with his tongue.
His mind screamed for him to ask for her help, but for the life of him he couldn’t remember why. She sighed, parting her lips just enough to allow him inside the warm recess of her mouth where he stroked the tip of her tongue with his own.
Tension rippled along his skin when she shuddered in response. He deepened the kiss and grasped her hips, dragging her against his body so she could feel exactly what she did to him.
She tasted sweet and tart at the same time, just like his favorite candy, Sweet Tarts. His hands slid up her torso, slipping underneath her thin tank, reveling in her soft, smooth skin. Pulling back from her lips, his gaze slowly traveled to the swell of her round, pert tits rising and falling in rhythm with her rough breathing. They were perfect for his hands, just enough to fill them. Her nipples were as enticing as ripe berries and hardened to tight points under his gaze. She liked that. He rolled one between his thumb and forefinger before giving a tight, testing pinch. A low moan sounded in her throat as she arched her back, pushing her breasts harder into his hands.
She twisted in his arms, gasping for breath. “What are we doing?”
He tried to find the right answer. How to explain the unexplainable, the why of his primal lust? Instead, his lips were drawn back to hers for a hard, demanding kiss. His need to possess consumed him as he plundered her warm, wet mouth.
He paused long enough to breathe. “I don’t know. I can’t seem to stop. Does it matter?”
She stole another kiss by thrusting her own tongue between his lips for an exploration of her own. Tunneling her hands through his hair, she gripped it tight and tugged him closer. The pleasure of her kiss was so good, licking at his skin until he thought he might burn in it.
He wanted her, and he wasn’t about to fight it. Thrusting against her pussy, his cock begged for release. The fabric from his pants and hers connected to increase the friction against his sensitive skin, heating him further as a shudder coursed through his body. More skin. He needed to touch more of her skin. Now.
“At least tell me your name.”
“Lucas,” he bit out, unable to focus.
He clawed at her tank, pushing it upward and over her head. He trailed his tongue down her neck, his teeth nipping at the tender skin before latching on to one of her large, ruby-red nipples, sucking it in deep. He let everything about her fill his senses, her sweet taste and the heady scent of her arousal filled the air around them.

* * * *

Her knees buckled in weakness. “Oh, God.” The heated pleasure was so much more than she’d expected. The sensations from his teeth and tongue arrowed straight to her pussy, making her ache for him to fuck her as long and as hard as he could. She reached down to remove her shorts, eager for him to touch her all over.
He grabbed her wrists to still her movements and slid down in front of her so his head was even with her bare belly. The indentation mocked him until he leaned forward and swirled his tongue inside the tiny button.
“I want the pleasure of revealing your treasures,” he whispered. He flipped her around and roughly pushed her against the nearby wall.
“What are you—”
“Shh. You have nothing to fear from me,” he interrupted. “I won’t hurt you...much.”
The excitement of his words throbbed in her clit, increasing the tension of her need.
He grasped her shorts and silk panties and, in one smooth move, had them down around her ankles.
His finger traced the seam of her bottom, dipping perilously close to her wet, ready slit. “You have such a beautiful ass. I can’t wait to run my tongue all over every inch and sink my teeth into your flesh.”
The temptation he offered had Kira panting for breath as she tried to focus on getting air in and out of her lungs while quivering in need. If he did the things to her he described, she didn’t think she would survive.
Large, calloused hands grasped her cheeks, parting them for his first intimate look at her. She sucked in a deep breath—waiting. When his fingers wandered to the lips of her pussy, her body throbbed under the fiery touch of his hands, heating her to boil.
She gasped out the breath she’d been holding. Never in her life had a man taken the time to inspect her body with such intimate scrutiny. Expecting the usual complaints that her butt was too big and her breasts too small, her spine stiffened. Despite her self-consciousness about his actions, and unable to breathe or voice her fears, Kira was helpless to the way he made her feel and couldn’t stop his sexual invasion even if she wanted to. She didn’t!
His fingers grazed her slippery folds, sending little shivers of delight straight through her core. She nearly came undone when the tip of his finger touched her clit.
“God, you’re so hot and wet for me, aren’t you? I can already taste your sweet juices coating my tongue.” She tensed slightly. “No, baby. Just relax and don’t be afraid,” he whispered.
“You don’t even know who I am.”
“I know everything I need to at the moment. Your body fits perfectly in my hands and you’re so damned sweet. Let go and allow me to show you just how far pleasure can go.”
He sank a finger into her pussy, stroking slowly. In. Out. In and out. Leaving her incapable of doing anything other than moan and writhe from the pleasure. When he added a second, and then a third finger to her aching heat, the fullness stroked her sensitive walls. Without pausing the full-force finger fucking, Lucas stood to his full height, rubbing her naked body with his still fully-clothed form. The delicious rough friction of the material against her bare skin edged her one step closer to bliss.
He removed his fingers from her tight sheath, and small whimpers of protest sounded in her throat. He distracted her by lightly scraping the curve of her neck with his teeth, further inflaming her desperate need.
Circling her clit, she cried out for more. Her back arched and her bottom opened for the finger he slid between the cheeks of her ass. He rubbed her own juices around the puckered opening for lubrication before gently pushing one finger into her ass one knuckle at a time. Stars exploded behind her eyes, her body quivered, and she screamed out and shook with the strongest orgasm of her life.

* * * *

Lucas jolted awake.
“What the fu—not again!” he roared, his chest slick with sweat, his breathing harsh and uneven.
He stroked his throbbing cock, certain he was going to explode if he didn’t come soon.
On a sigh, Lucas leaned back and wondered who the mysterious redhead he continued to dream about was. He had to find her, make it real.
Despite knowing he was being watched, he continued to move his hand up and down his rigid shaft while considering how it would feel if his mystery woman rocked her backside against him as his cock pushed into her tight slit. Warm, wet flesh sucking him inside.
Near completion, the familiar rush of sparks raced across his skin, along with the tickling of fur beginning to come out on his arms. He willed himself not to change, but couldn’t stop—didn’t want to stop—his orgasm. On the final image of her wicked smile, his seed spurted from his engorged cock, subduing the beast, he looked directly into the camera with a feral grin, knowing that he’d once again prevented the change and thus disappointed his captors. He experienced a moment of relief, but it wouldn’t be enough for long. He needed to escape soon and find this woman who tormented his sleep. Everything about her called to him. His need to dominate and control her grew with every night’s dream and the moment he was free there would be no stopping the beast.

* * * *

Kira startled awake the next morning when the sun slanted across her face from the open window, momentarily confused about her whereabouts and what had happened. As the fog of sleep faded away, she remembered checking into the motel.
She lay there, reliving her dream from the night before of the sensual man who would be her mate. Standing in front of her, his broad, muscular body had eclipsed her athletic frame, and he must have easily reached six-four. Despite the tired expression she’d seen from her first vision, his gold and green eyes had sparked with energy and lust. Her pussy tingled again as she considered the feelings she had experienced while dreaming and how much longer she could last without him touching her. I don’t want it to be this way. There should be a choice. But the deep burn of need and desire wouldn’t let go just because her brain said so.
“Lucas,” she whispered aloud. Remembering him as the man she’d seen in her vision just before her car crash, she became convinced, more than ever, that her powers were fucked.
With the heavy weight of responsibility pressing down on her shoulders, Kira rose to shower and dress before she hit the road again. She didn’t want these feelings or the obligation that came with them. She already had a life she needed to get back to. One that wouldn’t wait very long for her return.
While brushing her teeth, Kira reexamined her vision from the day before. The cell Lucas had been in seemed familiar, military style. Hard to miss with all the sea foam green walls. She closed her eyes, summoning the exact image she’d seen. Once there, she glanced around, hoping to find clues that would tell give her a possible location.
Part of her training as a Marine Corps intelligence officer had required her to become familiar with most military bases and their brig facilities. There was a damn good chance she’d seen it. She focused on a wall outside the cell door where the guard stood.
Noticing some faint writing, she struggled to zoom in on the spot. Navajo inscriptions, she realized.
“Fort Wingate!” Impossible. Officially, Fort Wingate had been closed for almost fifteen years, but it was occasionally used for missile testing, and a civilian contractor did some work there for the government. However, there were no day-to-day military operations and certainly no policing activities going on.
To Kira, this simply provided more damning evidence she really was losing her mind, and the rate of the loss was accelerating rapidly. Sexual dream walking with her intended mate she understood, but envisioning the same man being held prisoner by the military and hidden away in a deserted facility was a little over the top, even for her.
She had to get a grip and figure out how to regain control. It wouldn’t be long before the council hunted her down, and she didn’t want to go before them and plead her case. Having a group of elders who knew little about her decide whether she was fit to live or die was unacceptable. She’d always found their system of determining when a clan member was a threat to the safety and secrets within rather archaic. Their rules for the onset of the mating call provided only one way to escape death. Find your mate and perform the bonding ritual.
She picked up her bag and slammed her belongings inside. Time to get back on the road and put as much distance between her and home as possible. Until she found an alternative solution she wouldn’t make it easy for anyone to find her.
“I choose to live on my terms, and nobody else gets to say different,” she declared.

* * * *

Kira knew better than to stop, but seeing the exit sign for Fort Wingate as she traveled along I-40, she couldn’t seem to help herself. Night quickly approached, and she wasn’t prepared to be caught trespassing on government property. I’ll just nose around a little to prove to myself there’s nothing there. Then she could get back on the road without the nagging doubts.
At the front gate, she noticed a sign posted that all visitors must report to Building 204 to register. Since her presence on any base would be questioned, she decided to bypass check-in and take the back service road that circled behind the facility where the brig would be located. Explaining to clueless security why she needed to be here in the first place could be a little awkward. Even she wouldn’t have believed herself.
About a mile into the base, she spotted the sign indicating the Brig straight ahead. She opted to park her car several buildings away and approach the building on foot.
Just in case.
Before getting out of her car, she considered grabbing her Glock from the glove compartment but decided carrying her non-military issue weapon on a military base would be borrowing trouble she couldn’t afford. Not to mention a little too paranoid; besides, her military-approved Sig was strapped to her calf, concealed by her jeans.
She approached the back of the Brig and immediately noticed dusty, dark windows boarded up tight. Layers of grime gave the building a depressed and creepy look. The facility appeared unused and abandoned, but she reached out anyway to try the rear door, and caught a glimpse of something from the corner of her eye. Bending down, she picked up a cigarette butt that didn’t look fifteen years old. She sniffed it. Freshly burned tobacco.
Still doesn’t mean anything. Employees could walk by here while on their smoke break. The nagging sense of something off tingled across her scalp and she shook it off, checked the door and confirmed it was indeed locked tight.
In search of conclusive evidence, she crept around the side of the building headed in the direction of the front door. As she neared the front of the structure, the hairs on the back of her neck stood up, stopping her dead in her tracks. Her senses screamed now, something wasn’t right here. She rubbed the base of her neck, rolling her head to loosen up the muscles. Her internal warnings were no joking matter and had saved her ass more than once. She inched forward with a lot more caution and in-depth observation, and surveyed the area around the building. Still she saw and heard nothing, but her senses were on alert, and would not be ignored. With that in mind, she proceeded to the front door.

* * * *

Lucas sensed someone close by but didn’t recognize the scent. He sat up on his cot, testing for a telepathic link. Easily broached, he wandered undetected through the stranger’s mind and spoke softly. Who are you and why are you here?
Her shock at his voice in her head reverberated through his own mind like a short stab with a needle as she frantically searched for a reason someone had so easily slipped inside her shields, she went stock-still and answered his question. I could ask you the same question but more importantly, get out of my head.  
He laughed at her anger yet her voice soothed and calmed his nerves, a natural balm to his restless nature. Tempted to drag out the conversation, the sudden rapid rise of her heartbeat alarmed him. Who are you?
I’m Captain Akira MacDonald, U.S. Marines. I’m here checking into the unauthorized use of this facility.
Suspicious by nature and circumstance, Lucas assumed they had sent a new female soldier in yet another lame attempt of getting him to cooperate.
Sorry, sweetheart, but sending you in here isn’t going to change a thing. I’ll tell you the same thing I told the last one. Although… I could use a good fuck. Lucas faltered when her bitter anger washed over him like a wave. No use getting dragged in by someone new. He closed the mind link to her and lay back down with a satisfied smirk he knew the cameras would pick up.
The bastards should know better by now.

* * * *

Fury surged through her. Kira had come out of her way to find out if someone from her society had been kidnapped, and this was the thanks she got. She had half a mind to turn around and leave him here, show him just where his arrogance would get him. But if he ended up being what she thought he was, they had bigger problems than just the two of them. She’d have to get him out of here.
The familiar tingle erupted in Kira’s ears as magic surged through her mind, begging for release. When she finally succumbed to the call, her arms flung wide and the locked door burst open. Not wanting to be discovered by any guards, she quickly ducked inside, and closed the door behind her.
Might have thought of that before you made all that racket with the door. His voice whispered along the edge of her mind, unsettling her further.
Shut up. I need to concentrate.
A low chuckle sounded in response. She took a deep breath to fortify her shields and kick him out of her head before proceeding.
She attempted to get her bearings in the darkened room while she listened for any telltale signs of where he might be, as well as any guards. With an ego like his, she decided, Lucas couldn’t resist speaking to her again, but he surprised her when he said nothing.
“I came here to investigate,” Kira whispered. No response. “Why are you being held? Have you committed a crime?” She waited and listened. “You can’t stay here, it’s too risky.” Still she heard nothing. No breathing, no movement. No signs of life within the room.
Strange.
To investigate further, she crept forward, feeling her way in the darkened room. Her hand came in contact with the cold steel bars. She’d found the cell but had no idea which direction led to the door or where Lucas might be hiding within.
By instinct and touch, she located the cell door in minutes. She inhaled deeply. Entering the cell could be a big mistake as what waited inside for her was still a mystery. But a force stronger than her will compelled her forward. Again she concentrated on the lock, and her magic worked its way inside until the cell door slid open. Gripping the bars tightly, she started to move inside.
“Who are you and why are you here?” His menacing voice reached out to her, accompanied by a low growl, coming from the far corner from where she stood.
“I already told you who I am and I’m not here to hurt you, only to find out information,” she assured him. Maybe this wasn’t such a hot idea after all.
“Darling, I’m not worried about you hurting me. I just don’t feel like playing your game.” His mocking tone grew stronger as he moved toward her, stopping mere inches from her body. Though his closeness made her uncomfortable, she refused to back down and give him the satisfaction of thinking he scared her.
With a brief thought to her weapon, she leaned forward and whispered in his ear, “I don’t play games with strange men, so you can back off with the macho alpha-male crap.”

* * * *

Her breath skittered across his skin, and he lost focus for a moment, forgetting for an instant that she was his enemy. Instead, he fought an urge to take her to the ground, pin her arms to the cold concrete floor, and fuck her as hard as he could. The animal wanted free and the raging hard-on pressing painfully against his zipper made it damned difficult to control the beast.
Her scent invading his nostrils had a spicy tang with a definite musk of arousal undertone, reminding him of his recent dreams and something else, something from a long time ago. He tried to get a good look at her, but even his enhanced vision couldn’t see past her silly ball cap in the darkness.
While admiring her bitch-in-heat scent, he began to formulate a plan. She’d left the cell door unlocked with no guard in sight. Unlike him, she appeared to be having difficulty seeing in the dark, which made it ridiculously easy to grab her and use her as a hostage to get out of this godforsaken place. Maybe too easy.
After allowing himself about fifteen seconds to decide a course of action, he flexed his forearms and his nails lengthened without a sound into lethally sharp weapons. He grabbed her arms, spun her around, and pulled her compact body flush up against his while placing his claws so precisely around her neck she couldn’t move without him slicing into her flesh. Instinctually she fought back until his claw pierced her skin enough to draw blood. The metallic scent filled the dank air, igniting his hunger. His vision hazed for a few brief seconds while he fought the instinct to dip down and tongue the blood from her neck, and instead forced himself to focus. He was in control here.
She hissed through clenched teeth, “What the hell are you doing?”
“Sorry, hon, but it looks like you’re my ticket out of here.”
“Why? What have you done?”
The honey sweet smell of her fear mixed with the pungent odor of her anger permeated his senses. A momentary twinge of regret knotted in his stomach for having to involve her or hurt her, but this was his only chance to escape.
“The only thing I’m guilty of is trusting the wrong person.” And he couldn’t wait to gain his freedom to begin the search for his betrayer. “I only need to use you to get out of here, and then I can let you go.” Her body tensed in his arms, and he suspected she was planning to make a move against him. “Look, if you just cooperate, this will be quick and painless.” He waited for her to answer.
“I thought I was coming here to help you, asshole, but clearly you’re not the man I thought you were.”
Her response made no sense, but he suspected it was simply a ploy to confuse him. His captors had tried every method of torture and coercion to break him, but they had to be feeling seriously desperate when they’d sent this woman.
“Let’s go.” He prodded her forward in short steps.

* * * *

While Lucas walked her out of the cell, Kira nudged the Tallan to scan the nearby area for guards or any other people. He foolishly thought he was taking her against her will, but she knew the truth, and she’d play along to see where it led them for a while. Her neck already throbbed from the small slice of his claw, and delaying their departure with hand-to-hand combat wasn’t a smart tactical move. Truth be told, it wasn’t just the danger that had her worried—being this close to Lucas lit her body like gas on dried kindling. It was unsettling to say the least. Shaking her head, she refocused on the task at hand, their connection would have to wait until they were in the free and clear.
For some strange reason, she found no one around. That simple fact had her internal warning blaring for attention. Something was off, but she couldn’t take the time to analyze it now. They needed to get out before anyone returned, or worse, had time to attack. When they walked out the door of the facility, Kira noticed Lucas checking every detail around him for any sign of trouble. She’d bet anyone would be hard pressed to get anything by him. Capturing him must have been a real bitch.
Despite her annoyance over him believing he could actually kidnap her, she couldn’t help but admire his physique. The muscles of his torso rippled against her back with every lithe move he made. When he pulled her down in a crouch to stay hidden, he seemed every inch a predator waiting for his prey.
He turned to her, his mouth open to say something, and he froze. His eyes narrowed, dilated, and for an instant, time stood still as she watched the awareness dawn in his gaze. Those dark eyes pinned her in place and sparks shot through her at the uncontrollable lust coursing in her veins. She licked her lips nervously and bit her bottom lip has he continued his intense perusal.
“How is this possible?” he asked.
Kira closed her eyes and took a steady breath. Obviously her suspicions had been correct. They’d walked through the dreams together, and from the telling way he devoured her with his gaze, he remembered every sensual minute. Her face flushed with heat as the memories of what they’d done every night this week became a little more real.
She parted her lips to respond, but he covered them with his own, the reality of his possession of her mouth even more intoxicating than she had dreamed. He thrust his tongue inside, and the fervent pressure of his lips against hers started a throbbing between her legs. He pulled her across his lap where his rapidly growing arousal pressed into her buttocks. Despite the potential for danger, she melted into his arms.
His hands roamed everywhere—along her spine, caressing her shoulders before finally sinking into her thick hair where he gripped a handful and jerked her off his lips. She yelped from the shock and pain of his action.
“What the hell is going on here?”
Before Kira could respond, she was startled by an alternate image forming in her mind. “Someone’s coming,” she murmured. He dropped her from his lap, leaping away from her into a defensive crouch to listen.
She grabbed his hand and wordlessly tried to pull him toward her hidden car. He didn’t budge.
“Look, pal, unless you want us both to be caught, you need to trust me. I have a car nearby that we can use, but if we don’t go now, the well-armed bitch you’re so fond of will be here.”
He stared at her for a moment, “I don’t trust anyone but myself, so don’t think for a second you can play me.”
She dropped his hand, pulled her handgun from the ankle holster, and took off for her car. She’d leave the bastard behind if that’s the way he wanted to play it.
Play. More anger rolled from her in waves as she fled to the car.

* * * *

From a quarter of a mile away, in the corporate offices, Malcolm felt a tingling down his spine, a sure sign of trouble. He sensed a change in his brother that couldn’t be good. He reached across the desk to phone the guards. “What’s happening with our subject?”
“There seems to be a problem, sir.” Malcolm heard a slight tremble in the guard’s voice when he answered, and some shouting in the background. “While Lara was taking a quick break, your prisoner disappeared.”
A white-hot rage erupted within him, the nature of his beast calling out to him from its prison as he savored the idea of killing the guard on the phone. Pain seized his gut when the animal hit the wall holding him in. Malcolm took some deep, calming breaths and temporarily banked down his angry desires. There would be time for that later. These days he had a new outlet for that aggression.
“You and your team should begin reviewing the security tapes immediately, and send Lara to my office right now. I will deal with this breach myself.”
Damn that woman. Will she never fucking listen to me? I warned her that my brother was clever and cunning beyond her comprehension. She’d insisted her magic would hold him. Good thing I anticipated something like this would happen and took proper measures. In the meantime, when that bitch gets here, she’ll have to earn my forgiveness with her hot mouth and pray I let her live.
God, he was already hard just from thinking about her punishment. He would have to beat her, punish her for her continued failures, and if she could take it without begging for him to stop, he’d reward her by stuffing his cock in her wanting mouth. His body tingled with the anticipation of pleasure those images conjured as he began taking his belt off.