BONUS SCENE: Nyktos ASITE POV – Holding On

February 14, 2023

I needed it.
But it kept leaking out of me, seeping from the ragged wounds across my chest.
Fucking dakkais.
I tossed the soaked towel aside, ignoring the scream of pain as the movement pulled at the
skin that should’ve healed by now. I grabbed a new towel to ruin, dampening it.
Catching a glimpse of the mess the dakkais’ claws had made of my chest, I let out a rough
laugh. I was in bad shape, and I…
I’d made her flinch.
I could still taste the sourness of Sera’s shame. And worse yet, the too-thick tang of her
concern sat in the center of my chest, aching worse than the godsdamn claws.
How could she make it seem so real? Her guilt? Her worry for me—who she’d planned to
murder? Wasn’t like I didn’t get her reasons. Fates knew I’d do damn near anything to protect
my people—and I had—but it was a huge ass bitter pill to swallow. My failure to see what she
was up to. How I’d begun to trust her. How I’d started to regret the loss of my kardia—
“None of it matters,” I muttered.

And it didn’t because Sera had likely always known that I could read emotions. She’d
played that game of hers. Fates knew she wasn’t the first to become so skilled at manipulating
her feelings. Wasn’t that the exact same shit that Veses had pulled? Still tried to? I wasn’t going
to fall for it again.
But she had flinched.
“Fuck,” I roared, sending more blood I couldn’t afford to lose pumping out of the wounds.
Exhaling roughly, I lifted my gaze to the mirror. I barely recognized myself. My skin was
pale, my cheeks hollow, and cheekbones too sharp. Shadows had settled under my eyes. Fangs
It was I who looked like a monster.
My head bowed then, my neck feeling a little too loose for comfort. The floor beneath my
feet didn’t even feel like it was there. I gripped the vanity, grounding myself—or trying to. I’d
been worse off than this. Body broken. Bones shattered. This was nothing. I repeated that, even
as I felt my pulse slow. This is nothing. But…
It had been a while since I’d fed. I could feel the hunger gnawing at me. Had felt it for days,
but the options were…
The options were a nightmare.
I dragged the towel over my chest, a hiss of pain escaping me. Damn, maybe this was a little
more than nothing. A shudder went through me, and a white mist crowded the corners of my
eyes. The only choice now was to sleep—go to ground and heal—but that would leave the
Shadowlands unprotected. Leave her unprotected. I snarled. Nektas and the others could only do
so much.
A soft hum of energy pressed upon the nape of my neck, barely noticeable beneath the pain,
but I felt it.
Felt her.
Fates, no. I had to be hallucinating. There was no way she had gotten this close to me
without me sensing her until now. There was no fucking way she was here.
Every muscle in my body locked up at the sound of her voice. My grip on the vanity
tightened. She couldn’t be here. Slowly, I lifted my head, and the silvery-blond cascade of curls
pierced the shadows clouding my vision. She stood at the entrance of the bathing chamber, her
chin lifted, shoulders straight, and feet planted like…like a warrior going into battle. I saw her.
Her stance. The rise and fall of her chest with each breath she took, straining the tight lacing
of her bodice. The unending curves of her body. Her defiance. That damn glorious hair. The lush
Everything about her was beautiful, even her lies.
The breath that left me was ragged, and I didn’t inhale as I stared at her, counting the
seconds between when I felt my pulse beat. “I clearly recall telling Nektas to put you somewhere
safe where you couldn’t get yourself into trouble.”
“Yeah, well, he thinks he listened to you.”
There were too many seconds between beats. “He did not.”
She swallowed, drawing my gaze to the delicate line of her throat. A sharp pang of hunger
pierced my gut and chest. Muscles seized even further.
“You need to feed,” she said.

I almost laughed at the challenge in her voice, but that white shadow was ever-increasing in
those now minutes between beats. It was an insidious lust for blood. A beast of a wolf, sinking
its claws into my chest and mind, digging deeper and deeper until all I could see was the pulse
thrumming in her throat. I counted the time between them, too. Steady. Full of life. Full of fire. I
inhaled then. “And you, the utter last person I want to see right now, need to leave.”
Sera stiffened, challenge growing in her stance. “You need to feed. That’s why I’m here.”
A misty, shivery wave of awareness went through me. Feed? My jaw throbbed. It wasn’t the
only thing. So did my dick. It had hardened the moment she said my name—like it always did.
Marble began to crack beneath my fingers as the instinctive urge to strike rode me hard. As the
wolf thickened and grew. I stretched my neck from side to side. “Did you not hear me?”
“I did.” Sera inched closer.
My lips peeled back. She was too near for the state of my mind. My head was a mess. The
wolf was becoming more prominent. She was too close because the beast wanted at her.
She halted, providing a momentary, blissful reprieve. “But I wouldn’t be here if you fed
like…like other Primals.”
I laughed. Or thought I did. The only sound I heard was a low, animalistic rumble. “And
how would you know what other Primals do?”
“I…I don’t, but I imagine they’d make sure they weren’t weakened,” she admitted. “And are
able to protect their people.”
The last thing she should be thinking about was the people, because protecting them was the
last thing I was thinking of as I eased off the vanity and turned to her. She should be more

worried about protecting herself, but that would require her to have at least an ounce of self-
preservation. She never thought of the risks, did she? And yet, I was surprised. So was the beast.

It was surprised and thrilled. Foolish prey was the easiest to hunt and capture. Conquer and—
A thin breath parted my lips. “You truly have no fear of death, do you?”
“I…I always knew I would meet an early death one way or another,” she said, almost as if it
were some sort of joke.
“How?” The misty shadow was invading my veins, flowing into the hollowness of my chest.
“How did you know you would die?”
“I figured it would either be by your hand or one of your guards if I…”
“If you actually succeeded in weakening me? If I fell in love with you?” I drifted to the
opening of the bathing chamber, picking up on a hint of tart, lemony unease. Not fear. Never
fear. “If you managed to kill me?”
Sera nodded.
The wolf pressed against my flesh as I took in the way her lips parted. The shallow rise of
her breasts. The beat of her pulse…
The brief taste of her—that tiny drop I’d stolen—still lingered in my senses, but that wasn’t
all I needed. Fates, I needed her against me. Under me. Her blood was fire, but her flesh was
paradise. A violent peace.
And I wanted it.
Needed it.
I could take it. Easily. The physical pain would go away. The emptiness would ease up for a
little while. I could take it—
Not it.
I would be taking her.

It would be her I’d be feeding from.
And I would likely kill her.
“You need to leave,” I told her.
“I’m not going to.”
The wolf roared its approval as I shouted, “Leave!”
Sera flinched—fuck, she flinched again, and I tasted…the bitterness of fear. Good. A low,
guttural growl echoed from deep within my chest. She needed to be terrified.
But she didn’t move.
And I knew then that she wouldn’t. So did the wolf.
“If you don’t leave, I’m going to feed from you,” I warned, no longer feeling the beat of my
pulse. “And I’m going to fuck you while I do it.”
Sera’s inhale reached me, as did the spicy, smoky hint of arousal. Every part of my being
focused on her. Only her. My stare momentarily dropped to her mouth. I could think of other
talents. My dick throbbed, wanting her as badly as I wanted her blood.
“Is that a promise?” She raised a brow. “Or just more talk?”
Lust for her blood and for her collided, fusing. There was no separating the two now. My
chest rumbled. “Reckless.”
“I think you know that is one of my talents.”
“I may kill you. Do you understand that? I haven’t fed in…decades.” That was a lie but
wasn’t. I hadn’t fed willingly in decades. “I don’t trust myself right now. Do you understand,
The pretty flush of blood hit her cheeks. Her chin lifted. “You’re not going to kill me.”
So beautiful.
So brave.
“Foolish,” I purred.
“Maybe, but I’m still standing here.”
She was.
Sera stood there like a sacrifice. Or a gift.
And I couldn’t fight it. I didn’t want to. “So be it.”
I crossed the distance between us before she had a chance to change her mind. My fingers
curled into her hair—her soft, silky hair—as I tugged her head back. I struck, sinking my fangs
deep into her flesh. I jerked against her at the first drop of blood, and the beast howled its
Sera’s blood.
Hot and smooth, it hit my tongue first and then coursed down my throat. She tasted
of…everything. I drew her into me with deep, strong pulls. I drank and drank, moving as I did,
caging her soft body between mine and the wall, my mouth moving hungrily at her throat. She
gripped my arms, and the delightful prick of pain scratched my nerve endings as her nails dug
into my skin.
She tasted of sweet fire and sunlight.
I warned her.
I took her into me, devouring the taste of her, reveling in it. Nothing tasted like Sera.
I told her what would happen.
I drowned in her taste, in the heat of her blood, in the feel of her sluicing through my veins.

She knew the risks.
I pressed into the softness of her body, sucking at her neck ravenously. Selfishly.
And yet, she stayed.
A sacrifice?
A gift?
I was at the breaking point. I could feel it—the beast creeping its way up the back of my
neck, poising to take complete control. If I let it, I would take everything from her.
I didn’t want that.
In my haze of blood and desire, I knew that. I didn’t want to see the defiant spark snuffed
out of her. I didn’t want to see the life fade from her steely gaze. I didn’t want to break her. It
took everything in me to ease off. To loosen my grip on her shoulder. To slow my feeding. But I
did it because I wanted her.
Alive and warm and under me…
I wanted in her.
And she wanted that, too.
Maybe as badly as I did because her blood was now smoky with her arousal.
Groaning, I thrust my thigh between hers as I drew my hand from her shoulder to the swell
of her chest, curling my fingers along her bodice. She shuddered against me, letting her head fall
back against the wall—giving in to me completely. And for a moment, the beast raised its head
again. Giving in to it would be so easy. There was a dark sort of pleasure in taking a life. Feeling
that last beat on the tongue. I sucked harder—
The tangle of her fingers in my hair snapped my eyes open. She pulled me closer to her,
writhing against my thigh. I slowed at her throat as she came apart so exquisitely in my arms.
The wolf and I came together.
Her soft cry of pleasure tamped down the bloodlust. I slowed at her throat as she trembled
against me, her hips rocking once more as she pulled on my hair, sending a fiery wave of
pleasure across my scalp.
So wonderfully reckless.
Curling my fingers along the edge of her bodice, I tore the gown down to her waist. Her
gasp was a sultry kiss in the air. The brush of her warm breasts against my chest overrode the
need for her blood. I lifted my mouth from her neck. I wanted—no, I needed to see what I’d so
greedily bared, but her head straightened. Our gazes locked, and I…I couldn’t look away from
those beautiful green eyes.
So bold.
So brave.
I wanted to tell her that, but words failed me as she dragged her gaze from mine. I couldn’t
look away from her face, from the smattering of freckles, but I knew the exact moment she
caught sight of my arousal. Her breaths picked up, and the taste of lust exploded. She leaned
back against the wall.
Slowly, my gaze lowered to the heavy swells of her breasts and the tight, hardened tips. I
liked seeing my blood smeared on her skin, especially those little nipples. I brought her hair
forward, letting the strands glide between my fingers as I drew the curls across her chest. I
should’ve drunk from there. One side of my lips curled up. Her skin was so wonderfully warm
and soft beneath my palm. So perfect. Her breath caught as my fingers trailed over her nipple. I
cupped her breast. She moaned. My gaze flew to hers.
I knew she would let me taste her there.

She would hold my head to her breast just as tightly as she’d held it to her throat.
Sera’s lips parted as she swallowed. “Did you take enough?”
Her voice jerked me out of my dual haze of lust and need, forcing me back to reality. Did I
take enough? I swallowed, groaning at the taste of her blood. I could use more, but the worst of
the bloodlust had passed. I wasn’t quite sure exactly when it had. Before or after I tore her gown?
But I could feel the beat of my pulse, and the wolf had sheathed its claws.
“It will have to be enough.” I ran my thumb over a hardened nub of flesh, wanting her
fiercely. But I was in control. I knew what I’d warned her about, but she wasn’t a sacrifice. She
was a gift—a treacherous one, but a gift nonetheless. And I wouldn’t make her a sacrifice to both
of my lusts.
I did one of the hardest things I’d done in a long time. I forced myself to step back from her.
“Has to be.”
Sera glanced at my chest, and her brow creased as if she weren’t sure I spoke the truth.
She was silent, though, as I soaked in her exposed flesh. Her beauty. My body hummed. My
cock fucking ached in a way that told me my hand wouldn’t cut it.
Her gaze lifted to mine once more, and I saw it in her eyes all at once. Resolve.
Determination. I could’ve stopped her. I didn’t. She reached down, sliding the gown from her
hips, baring herself completely—
Holy fuck.
“Sera…” I shuddered, watching her as she placed a hand between her breasts and lowered
those slender fingers down her stomach. Nothing could make me look away. She halted just
above her navel. “You haven’t taken enough.”
Then, I truly had no words.
“You promised.” Sera slipped her fingers between those lovely thighs and into the damp
heat I wanted so badly to feel. I inhaled sharply. “You promised to feed from and fuck me.”
I went rigid, my pulse pounding. Her fingers disappeared into her—
The space between us vanished. I caught her hand, drawing it to my mouth. I closed my lips
over a slick finger, sucking the taste off her. It was as decadent as her blood. My gaze locked
with hers.
“I did,” I said, need thickening my voice. “I did warn you exactly what would happen.”
“You did.”
My gaze dropped to her breasts. One side of my lips curled up. Then I struck, sinking my
fangs into the plump flesh as I wrapped my arm around her waist. I lifted her, taking her blood
into me as I let the blood flow, drinking from her as I sucked on a hardened nipple. She threw her
head back, but I caught it. Her pleasure nearly undid me as I turned us to the bed, lying her down
on her back. Her fingers went to my hair as I shifted, shoving my pants down. I needed to stop
drinking from her, but her taste, the way she gloriously gave in to the fire. Her willingness…
I lifted a hand to her cheek, running my thumb across her lip. Her head turned, and my cock
jumped as her mouth closed over my thumb. She trembled beneath me as I drew my hand over
her cheek.
Groaning, I shuddered against her, wanting to take my time. To explore every inch of her
body. To discover what every part of her felt like against my lips and tongue. But even with what
little experience I had in these carnal activities, I knew I was close to breaking. I ran my hand
over her other breast and the sweet swell of her hip, need overcoming the want.

Instinct took over as I reached between us, my hand trembling slightly as I gripped myself
and guided the head of my cock into her heat. I thrust into her, drawing deeply from her breast as
she tilted her hips up, taking me.
Good Fates…
I stilled deep inside her, having never felt anything like this before. Slowing the deep draws
at her breast, I swiped my tongue over her nipple. Her throaty moan drew my gaze. I lifted my
head to find those green eyes locked with mine. I looked between us, seeing where we were
joined. The sight was as amazing as she felt.
“Beautiful,” I rasped. A drop of her blood left my lip, hitting her other breast. I dipped my
head, erasing the droplet with my tongue. And then I kept going, drawing the peak of her breast
into my mouth.
Sera moaned, her hips jerking, dragging a ragged groan from me. Never had I felt this.
Fates, it was…
I shifted, watching our bodies as I withdrew and then pressed back in.
“Oh, gods,” Sera whispered, running her hands over my shoulders and arms.
A tremor worked its way through me as I cupped the back of her head. The tight grip of her
body, the pleasure I tasted from her and mine were almost too much. It was. The hold on my
more mortal form began to slip. Thick lashes lifted as Sera opened her eyes.
I shuddered, struggling to hold back a different kind of beast. A Primal one that was far
more dangerous than the wolf.
Sera touched my cheek.
Sucking in a short breath, I willed my pulse to slow. “I…I’ve never felt anything like this.”
Something sweet radiated from her as she whispered, “Me, neither.”
I stiffened, wanting that to be true. “Don’t lie to me now, even if you do so in such a pretty
“I’m not lying. I’ve never felt this either. Never.”
She sounded so damn genuine. And, fuck, I wanted this moment to be ours, for it to be real.
Even if it wasn’t, it didn’t change that I needed this. Needed her. “I don’t have very much
control right now. I don’t want to hurt you.”
“You won’t.”
“You don’t know that. I don’t.”
“You didn’t when you fed.” Sera smoothed her thumb along my jaw. “You won’t now.”
“Your faith in me…” Her bravery was nearly as foolish as her apparent trust in me, but still,
it rocked me to my core. I curled my hand into her hair. “Is admirable but reckless.”
“Your fear is misplaced.” She drew her legs up and around my hips. I lost my breath. So did
she. Her knees pressed against my sides.
Then she, a mortal, took control.
Catching me by surprise, Sera rolled me onto my back. The change in position was a shock
in sensation. I was deep in her—as deep as I could go.
“But I am reckless,” she panted, planting her hands on my chest.
Thank fuck she was. “Good Fates…” I watched her lean forward, placing her hands on the
chest healed because of her blood—because of her.
The edges of her hair danced over my chest, somehow as sensual as her stare. She began to
move, rocking slowly. I groaned. “Is this…is this how you plan to kill me?”
“No.” She lifted until just the head of my cock remained inside her and then slid back down.

Another deep rumble left me. “You sure?” I gripped her waist with one hand as I gathered
the strands of her hair with the other, holding the soft curls back as she rocked. I wanted to see
all of her. The moonlight strands of her hair. The sway of her breasts and where we were fused
together. “And I think I’m going to enjoy this manner of death.”
I caught sight of a faint smile gracing her lips before her head fell back. She took hold of the
hand in her hair, drawing it to her mouth. She pressed a kiss there, and the hollowness in my
chest gave an unsteady kick. I didn’t blink as she drew my hand down the center of her body to
her slick heat, enveloping me. She pressed our fingers against her clit and then cried out.
“Fuck.” I groaned, feeling the curl of her pleasure. My hips reared off the bed. “You feel too
good, liessa.”
Sera’s head snapped forward, and her eyes opened, bright like two polished emeralds. I kept
my fingers where she wanted them, teasing the sensitive bundle of flesh. She rode me faster, and
I gladly followed her lead, tasting the smoky spice of her pleasure. I knew she was close. It was
in the faster, jerkier movements of her hips and the quickening of her breath. I could feel the
spasms beginning in her. I watched avidly, obsessively, not wanting to miss a single moment of
her finding release.
“Ash,” she cried out, trembling atop me.
Then I lost control. I didn’t know if it was the feeling of her coming or the name that spilled
from her lips. Air left my lungs as I gripped her to me tightly, thrusting up into her, harder and
deeper. Tension built. Holding her close to me, there wasn’t any space between us. I needed…
I rolled her, keeping myself nestled deep inside her. I braced my weight on one arm. She
cried out as shocks of pleasure cascaded through the entirety of my body. I thrust deep into her
silky heat. That was all it took. Release powered down my spine, erupting in a burst of stunning,
breathtaking pleasure. My head fell to her shoulder as it took me hard, rocking me to my bones,
and it seemed to go on for what felt like a blissful eternity.
And Sera… She took all of me.
She held me through it. I felt her everywhere. Running her hands through my hair, over my
back, and down my arms. She held me until I was spent and then longer, and there was an
intimacy to it I’d never experienced before. A closeness that felt…important. Monumental.
Feeling strangely weak, I lifted my head and looked down at Sera. Her eyes were half-open,
partly hidden by a fringe of lashes so much darker than her hair. Sera was always beautiful, but
the ever-present wariness that was etched into her features and eyes was gone. There was a
softness there now. I’d seen it when we were at her lake and the other night on the balcony. It
was so rare to see her like this. My stare snagged on the smattering of freckles. They were like a
constellation, one yet to be discovered.
Her hands stilled on my back, and I opened my senses, feeling something airy and smooth.
But there was so much brewing beneath that. A violent storm of emotions barely curtailed, but I
focused on the light taste. I knew what it was.
Because I felt that in these moments. Peace. And it was crazy to me. Like yesterday didn’t
exist. Neither did tomorrow. There was only now. Her. Me. This. I found myself staring at her
mouth. Those soft lips.
I…I wanted to kiss her.
I wanted that contentedness, for peace to be the only emotion she felt. I stared at her mouth,
those lips that had spilled such lies.

I eased out of her and rolled onto my back, starting to close off my senses to her when I felt
the tanginess of anguish. It seized my chest as I tilted my head toward her, wondering if what I
felt from her was real or not. Wondering why I gave a damn. She hesitantly turned her gaze to
“How?” I asked. “How can you be so convincing?”
She stiffened, the tang of sorrow increasing until I almost—almost believed her. “You’re
reading my emotions.”
Sera wasn’t just bold and brave. She was also clever. And it was oddly amusing that she was
angry with me reading her emotions. “All things considered, that act doesn’t even register
against what you planned. Does it?”
“That doesn’t make it any less rude,” she retorted.
“I suppose not, but you didn’t answer my question. How are you so convincing? Were you
also taught that?”
An acidic burst of anger radiated from her. “I was not taught how to force emotion.”
I doubted that. “But weren’t you? Tell me, Sera. Would that not be a part of the seduction?
Of leading me to love you? To make me believe you feel something for me?”
A hint of sour shame tinged her anger. “First off, we didn’t know you could read emotions.
If we had, then I probably would’ve been schooled on how to feel something so deeply that even
I began to believe it was real. Secondly, why would I fake anything I’m feeling now? There’d be
no point. It wouldn’t save my people, even if I succeeded. And, finally, need I remind you not to
tell me what I’m feeling?”
That was the thing, though. I didn’t know what her family knew or didn’t, and emotions
could be forced to the point that one began to believe them. They were perhaps the easiest thing
to manipulate. It was something I’d learned the hard way.
But why would she fake them now?
My jaw clenched as I turned my head to the side. Why would she continue? The jig was up.
It served no purpose.
Silence descended between us. It didn’t last long before she spoke. “Did you take enough
blood? Honest?”
“More than enough.”
I started to close my eyes but felt her move beside me. I snapped them open to find her
sitting up, tangled hair falling over her shoulders. My gaze dipped to the curve of her breast and
the mark I’d left behind. An animalistic surge of satisfaction bolted through me. I should be
ashamed for feeling that, but I liked the sight of my bite on her. A lot.
Sera scooted away from me, making her way to the edge of the bed.
Muscles tensed. “Where do you think you’re going?”
She looked over her shoulder. “To my bedchamber?”
My eyes narrowed. “Why?”
“Why…wouldn’t I?” Her chest rose sharply. “Or am I supposed to be sent somewhere else?
To those cells you referenced? If so, can I at least find some clothing you didn’t ruin?”
She thought…?
Relaxing, I felt my lips curve up. “Yeah, I did ruin that gown.”
Sera was quiet for a heartbeat. “I’m not sure why you’re smiling about that.”
“It will be a favorite memory for years to come.”

“Well, I’m glad to hear that, but it’s not like I have a lot of clothes for someone to be tearing
them off me.”
I looked at her, not needing to read her emotions to know she was irritated. The pink flush
creeping across her cheeks told me what I needed to know. And fuck if I didn’t enjoy her when
she was angry. It made me messed-up, but it also made me hard. I stole another quick glance at
my mark on her breast. “You weren’t complaining when I did it.”
Sera’s eyes became thin slits.
My lips twitched. “If I recall correctly, you were quite eager to get rid of that gown
She stared at me, then her gaze dipped below my waist. The sharp spike in her arousal
reached me, and I felt myself thicken. Looking at her breasts didn’t help, but I didn’t want help.
“You are sitting next to me, gloriously naked, and I am intentionally staring.”
“I can see that,” she snapped.
Eyeing the puckered bite, I dragged my teeth over my lower lip. “My mark on your
unmentionables is quite fascinating to me.”
Her brows knitted, and then she glanced down, drawing in an unsteady breath. There was
another burst of spicy lust. “Pervert.”
“Can’t even argue with that.” I turned my head away. “I’m not putting you in a cell.”
“You’re not?”
I should, but… “Why would I?” I closed my eyes, hoping my cock would take the hint.
“You should rest. So should I. We need to be prepared for whatever comes next.”
She didn’t move.
“Rest means sleeping, Sera, which usually requires that you lay down, unless you’re able to
sleep sitting up. I would find that impressive if so,” I told her. “But it would also be distracting.”
A moment passed. “You want me to sleep beside you?”
“I want you to rest. If you’re beside me, I don’t have to worry about what you may or may
not do.” I reasoned with her, with myself.
She still didn’t move. “Are you not concerned?”
“Oh, I don’t know. Me attacking you?”
I laughed, unable to stop myself. Did she really think she’d get the chance?
“I’m not sure why you find that suggestion funny.”
“Because it is.”
She remained upright.
I bit back a sigh. “Go to sleep, liessa.”
Silence greeted me, and I could feel it growing beside me. The violent storm. Her wild
emotions shattered whatever shields I had up.
“You know what?”
“You can go fuck yourself.”
My eyes snapped open. Did she just…? I slowly turned my head toward her in disbelief. She
truly had no fear. Or common sense. Her back was to me, and she was on her knees, about to
leave the bed. It was almost as if she had forgotten what I was. Who I was. Or she didn’t care.
That would change.
I moved, so much faster than she. Catching her around the waist, I drew her back against my
chest as I curled my hand around her chin, tilting her back. There wasn’t even a tiny burst of fear

from her, and if that was what I wanted from her—I wasn’t even sure—it changed the moment
her body came into contact with mine.
I wanted her.
“Do you want to know why I find your suggestion funny?” I asked, pressing my cock
against her ass as I shifted my hand from her waist, slipping it down to her lower stomach. “Do
“No.” The tip of her pink tongue dampened her lips, sending a dart of brutal lust through
me. “But I’m sure you’re going to tell me. You do like to talk.”
I chuckled. Fates, she had such a mouth on her. I dipped my fingers between her thighs,
finding that spot she enjoyed so very much. Her hips jerked, drawing a rougher laugh from me.
“You do like my fingers inside you, don’t you?”
She didn’t answer, but I knew she did. I watched the tips of her breasts harden as I drew a
finger over her clit, and she rocked against my hand.
“I think there’s something else you like more than my fingers,” I murmured, parting her.
“Isn’t that right?”
“So?” she challenged, her voice thick with desire. Fates, she was deliciously wet.
I pressed against her ass, and she rocked back. The friction caused the hairs all over my
body to stand on end.
“And you know what I think?” she said. “You forgot what you were going to say.”
“Oh, trust me, liessa, I didn’t forget.” My breath coasted over the side of her neck and the
bite mark there. I moved slowly behind her, following the rhythm of the finger I’d slid inside her
until my cock bumped against my hand, as taut and hard as a bowstring. “I was just letting you
Sera stilled.
I pressed her down onto her hands and then her forearms and belly, keeping her ass up. A
savage smile pulled at my lips as I stared down at the full curve of her ass, and the elegant line of
her spine. She trembled as I worked my finger in and out, feeling her slick wetness. Her moan
brought forth another surge of brutal satisfaction and…and anger at her. Mostly at myself.
Because I knew I shouldn’t want her. There were no excuses. No beast to tame except my
lust. Desire that wasn’t fueled by feeding. This was all me.
“It’s funny because you cannot hurt me.” My mouth hovered over her bite, and I wasn’t sure
if I was speaking to her or myself. “You can never weaken me to the point that you’d ever be a
real threat.”
Her breath caught. Then she turned her head in my grip, toward me. “You sure about that?”
For fuck’s sake. Those four words…
My head snapped down, my fangs finding the two puncture wounds on her throat. I didn’t
sink them in. I just held them there, an act of dominance, one answered with a flood of arousal
from Sera.
She wanted this.
Like this.
She wanted me to dominate.
My lips curled back in a heated snarl as I drew my finger from her tight heat to that sensitive
flesh and then thrust my cock deep inside her. Her cry of pleasure stoked my need. I didn’t need
her to show me the way this time. There was no slow seduction from either of us. This was pure
instinct. The angle. The way I held her. Fates, I was going to explode.

A sudden, sharp sting drew my gaze down. She’d taken my thumb into her mouth. The
hellion had bitten me.
“Fuck,” I groaned against her throat.
A throaty laugh left her as she closed her lips around my thumb and sucked as hard as she
had when that mouth was wrapped around my cock. And, fuck.
I stilled deep inside her, bringing my hand down on her ass in a light smack. “Very
And I learned that she liked that, too.
Sera moaned around my thumb, pushing back and grinding, and I lost control. I plunged into
her hard and furiously. There was no thought. No teasing words. The only sounds were her soft
moans and cries. My grunts and the slap of our flesh. I held her in place and took her, thrusting
over and over. It was mindless. Raw. This was fucking…
But it felt like more than that.
Release took us in rapid succession, her first, and then when she clamped down on me, her
spasms took me over the edge. With a hoarse shout, I came even harder than I had before.
Riding the aftershocks rocking her, I kept her body sealed to mine, bracing my weight on
my arm. I didn’t know why, but I pressed my lips to where I’d bitten her before. I just did. She
quivered beneath me, and this time, it was I who held her.
And I kept holding her.
Even after our bodies had quieted, and I eased us onto our sides, her back to my chest. I held
on to her as she drifted into sleep. I didn’t let go. I didn’t sleep. Not for a long time. I just held
her, feeling the beat of her heart, each breath she took. Minutes ticked by. Hours.
My hold on Sera didn’t loosen.

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About Me

#1 New York Times and #1 International Bestselling author Jennifer lives in West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, hanging out with her husband and her Border Jack Apollo.

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