He rested a hand on her waist. "Si belle." He skimmed his fingers up her rib cage and the valley between her br**sts. Her chest rose with a deep breath.
With his fingertips, he circled one breast, then the other. "Your ni**les are becoming darker. Tighter. And I haven't even touched them yet." He pressed his mouth against the outside curve of her left breast.
She sighed. He cupped her right breast and massaged gently.
"Do you like it gentle...or rough?" He took the hardened tip between his thumb and forefinger and tugged.
"Or perhaps both." He drew the nipple into his mouth and swirled his tongue around the tip.
She splayed her fingers into his hair. "Jean-Luc."
"Hmm?" He kissed her other breast, nibbling and tweaking the nipple. He slipped his hand into her loose pajamas, reaching lower and lower until he encountered her curls. Slowly he massaged the plump mound. Her breathing became faster and more erratic.
He nuzzled her neck. "I want to taste you."
"Oh God," she whispered.
"I want to feel you shudder against my face." He licked her lips, then kissed her. He swept his tongue inside her mouth, then drew back. "It will be like that, but better. Are you ready?"
"Oh yes," she breathed, her eyes squeezed shut.
He grabbed the waistband of her pajama bottoms, yanked them down her legs, and tossed them aside. She covered her face briefly with her hands, then flung her arms wide. Her legs moved slightly, bending at the knee.
He grasped her ankles and planted her feet firmly apart on the bed. Her body jolted, sending a quiver down her legs that he could feel. His erection strained against his trousers, and he prayed for endurance. He needed to make her scream first. He needed her speaking words of love when he fully claimed her.
He clasped her knees and shoved them apart. She gasped.
He stared. Mon Dieu, she was beautiful. Dark auburn curls. Rosy flesh along the outer folds. A darker ruby color in the center. She glistened with moisture. Her fragrance called to him. It smelled of sweet desire and rushing blood.
He nestled a cheek against her soft inner thigh. "You're lovely beyond words. So sweet and wet." He skimmed his fingers over her, and her legs trembled.
Her groan sounded urgent and full of need. She clutched at the bedspread and moved her feet to his back.
He moved in closer and touched her with his tongue. One taste and he was lost. He seized her by the hips and swirled his tongue all over her, exploring every bit of her while she squirmed beneath him. He inserted his tongue, but wanted further inside her. He plunged a finger inside, then two, and stroked her while his tongue lapped her clitoris.
She was panting now, her hips rising. He nipped at her, then flicked his tongue, increasing to vampire speed.
She screamed. Her thighs gripped him; her inner muscles clenched his fingers. Her climax rippled through her, over and over, and just when it showed signs of waning, he tugged at her clitoris and wiggled his fingers. She screamed again, and more spasms shot through her.
He smiled. She responded so well, tasted so good. Soon she would confess her love. He unzipped his trousers.
"That was incredible." She pressed a hand to her chest. "You're so good."
"Yes?" Any minute now, she would declare her undying love. Then he would fill her and make her his own.
"You're wonderful and...aack!" Horror flashed across her face. "Your eyes are red!"
Zut. "It's nothing. I can explain."
"They're glowing!" She scrambled away from him. "That - that's not normal!"
"Fidelia warned me." She hustled off the bed. "Red glowing eyes. Danger."
"I won't hurt you!"
"Fidelia was right about the fire. She dreamed it." Heather grabbed her pajama bottoms and stuffed her legs inside. "And she dreamed about red glowing eyes and gnashing white teeth."
"Dammit, Heather, I'm in complete control." He stood beside the bed. "I won't bite you."
She froze. Her eyes widened. "Bite me?"
Merde. She didn't know. He motioned to the bed. "Please have a seat. I can explain."
She retreated a step. "I don't think so." She spotted her T-shirt on the floor and nabbed it. "I thought my theory was right. You admitted you were born in 1485."
She pulled the T-shirt over her head. "What are you not telling me?"
"I died in 1513."
She rubbed a hand against her brow. "Okay. That's how the immortal guys discover who they are. They die, then come back."
"I was wounded at the Battle of the Spurs." He sat on the edge of the bed. "My comrades fled, but I refused to retreat. The English surrounded me. I was stabbed many times and left to die."
She pressed a hand to her mouth and looked a bit green. "That's horrible."
"By the time the sun set, I was barely alive. Roman found me and said I could live to fight again. I agreed, and he changed me."
"Into an immortal?"
"No, chérie." He took a deep breath to prepare himself for her reaction. "Into a vampire."
Her face paled. He could literally smell the blood draining from her face and hands. He could hear her heart pounding. "That - that can't be true. Vampires aren't real."
"Heather." He stood and moved toward her, but stopped when she jumped back. "There's no need to fear me."
"I think there is. Don't you - don't vampires feed off people?"
"Not anymore. We drink synthetic blood from bottles."
"Right. Of course. You're not tempted to have your meals fresh?" She raised a hand to stop him coming closer, then pointed at him. "Alberto. He was bitten."
"And I threatened to fire Simone and Inga. They know biting is not allowed in my household."
"How considerate of you." She gave him a dubious look. "How many vampires have I met?"
"Robby, Ian, and Phineas. Simone and Inga. Angus MacKay and Emma."
"Emma?" Heather looked aghast. "I let a vampire watch my baby?"
"We're the best equipped for fighting Lui, since he's a vampire, too."
"And Phil and Pierre?"
"Mortal. We have to rely on mortals to protect us during the day because we're...unavailable."
She raised her brows. "Unavailable? You showed up three hours after Pierre's death. That was just rude!"
"I hate being separated from you during the day. I hate that I'm not there to protect you or comfort you. But I can't help it. I'm...dead."
She blinked. "You mean really...dead?"
With a sigh, he sat on the bed. "Completely dead. It's very...annoying, but it's only during the day."
"Right." She narrowed her eyes. "I guess you have fangs?"
He touched a pointed tooth. "They're not extended now. I'm in complete control. You're entirely safe."
She scoffed. "Safe? Those things are weapons. Oh sheesh. You had your...mouth all over me."
"I knew what I was doing. And you liked it."
She marched up to him and slapped him on the face.
He winced. "Why so angry, chérie? I've told you the truth."
"Now you tell me." She paced in front of him. "There are certain things you're supposed to say before sex. Stuff like, 'By the way, sweetheart, I have herpes.' Or here's a good one - 'Guess what? You're about to screw a dead man!'"
He stood. "I am not dead!"
"Give it a few hours! You will be."
"Does a dead man look like this?" He pushed his trousers down to reveal his bulging cotton briefs. He was no longer fully erect, but he was certainly swollen enough to be noticed. And she did notice. Her eyes widened, then quickly looked away.
"A dead guy who's stiff," she muttered. "Go figure."
"I'm not dead." He stepped toward her. "Did my lips feel dead when I kissed your br**sts and sucked your clit?"
She flinched. "Don't - "
"Have you already forgotten how you squirmed and screamed in my arms? You gushed all over me." He licked his lips. "I can still taste you."
She covered her face briefly. "I haven't forgotten. That's why this is so damned hard. I - I thought you were perfect. I thought I was falling in love."