Kissing the complaint off her lips, he slipped his hand under her T-shirt to spread his fingers over the taut silk of her abdomen. Her skin quivered as he moved that hand up to settle over her ribs, her heartbeat jagged under his skin. “Yes?” he whispered, nuzzling a kiss to the tender spot beneath her ear. “It’ll feel so good.” For both of them.
Her wrists flexed in his grip, but she didn’t attempt to pull away. “Yes.” Husky acquiescence.
Lifting his head from the intoxication of her skin, he held her gaze as he moved his hand up just enough to brush his thumb along the underside of her breast. She came up off the bed, pushing her soft flesh into his touch. Shuddering, he cupped her, squeezed her, rolled her nipple between his fingertips to her restless movements, her erotic cries. His mouth watered to push up her T-shirt, taste the hard little nub.
It took every ounce of will he had not to reach down, undo the damn zipper on his jeans and put her fingers on him. Patience. Patience. He chanted the word at the back of his mind as he moved his hand to her neglected breast, as he petted her to piercing need . . . and found he was rocking his c**k against the feminine arousal he could taste so earthy and rich on his tongue.
Sienna stared up in disbelief as he jerked up and out of the bed. Her ni**les peaked against the soft cotton of her T-shirt, taunting him. “You can’t just—”
“Leave you hot and frustrated?” Leaning down with his hands braced on either side of her, he closed his teeth over one provocative nub, wetting the cloth with his tongue. Her cry was sharp, her arousal a lash against his senses. “I damn well can,” he said, raising his head, “when my c**k is about to break in half.”
Chest rising and falling as she gulped in air, she shook her head. “Not my fault.”
“All your fault.” Not daring another kiss, he cupped her jaw, stroked his thumb over her lower lip. “Damn, but I like making out with you Sienna. Let’s do it again tomorrow.”
He left to the sound of a feminine snarl. It made his lips curve into a feral smile.
SASCHA was in the large, comfortable chair in the living room, Nadiya in her arms when Lucas stepped out for a second. He walked back in with an envelope in his hand. “Kit said this was delivered to the office by courier earlier today. Addressed to both of us.”
Smiling at the thought of the youth who was growing into a strong, wonderful man in front of her eyes, she said, “Has he gone?”
A nod. “He had a perimeter shift, but he’s going to drop by in the morning before he heads home. Not to see either of us, of course.”
Laughing, she watched Lucas tear open the letter, scan it. His own grin faded. “According to this,” he said, “an anonymous benefactor has opened a trust fund worth five million dollars in Naya’s name for her education, the balance to be paid out when she’s twenty-five.”
Sascha let Naya grip her finger as their little cat yawned, settled back down to nap some more. “Mother.”
Placing the letter on the coffee table, Lucas said, “What do you want to do?”
She loved him so much, but it was at moments like this that it struck her how very lucky she was. So many men would’ve rejected the trust fund out of hand, never asking the why of it all. “I’ve come to realize that I don’t know my mother as well as I thought I did.” It had changed her perception of her childhood, forced her to view everything through a different lens. “Let me talk to her.”
“Do you want me to put Naya down?”
“You just want to go cuddle with her.”
He didn’t deny the charge as he took the drowsy newborn from Sascha, his lips curving in the most tender of smiles. Fatherhood suited her panther—though she knew she’d have to watch out for his overprotective tendencies or poor Naya would never go on a single date. A quiet laugh bubbled out of her. It delighted her to think of the future, of all they’d experience together as a family.
Following her mate into the bedroom, she watched as he settled down on the bed with Naya skin to skin on his chest. His hand all but covered her tiny body as he stroked her in that changeling way, bonding with her on the most elemental level. Then he purred, and Naya made a happy little sound of delight, very much a cat in her love of touch.
Sascha laughed at the sight of the two of them so contented and lazy. “Room enough for three?”
Lucas held out his arm, eyes panther-green. “Always and forever.”
He stopped her heart sometimes, this man. “Don’t make me cry. I’m still hormonal.” Cuddling next to him when he smiled, she reached for the cell phone on the bedside table. It took a bare few seconds to send the text message. Nikita answered using Tp an instant later, her reach long enough that she’d hear Sascha’s far weaker telepathic voice.
Mother, we’ve received the letter advising us of the trust fund.
What does that have to do with me?
Her mother lied, Sascha thought, with such effortless ease. Instead of forcing the issue, she said, You know I ’ve given birth?
Your child carries a Russian first name. I expected you to sever all ties with your past.
Sascha had considered that, but she carried the past within her. The echo of it would resonate to her child, if only in the fierceness of the love Sascha felt for her. Lucas and I decided it was important for Nadiya to know both parts of her heritage. The line of Slavic monikers went back to Sascha’s grandfather, while Naya’s middle name had been that of Lucas’s healer mother. Would you like me to e-mail you an image of her?