My lips twitched. “Cow dung? Seriously?”
He met my eyes, and it was then when I realized Luc wore many masks. He’d let this one slip, and stark need swept across his features, sharpening them. Heat licked his eyes, intensifying the amethyst hue and turning his pupils a brilliant white. “Seriously.”
A flush crept into my cheeks, and something far warmer and headier slipped through the rest of me. “Wow.”
“Indeed,” he growled, and the fire in his eyes lit up my veins. “So, as long as you know I’m not going to be a detached caregiver giving you a bath and you’re okay with that, I’m more than willing to help you.” One side of his lips curved up. “Like, you have no idea how willing I am.”
“I don’t want you to be a detached anything,” I whispered. “I want you to be you.”
“Thank God.” Then, without further ado, he reached around to the nape of his neck, grabbed a fistful of his shirt, and pulled it over his head. He dropped it where he stood.
My gaze was greedy as they swept over his broad shoulders and defined chest, lingering on the lean length of his torso.
He made me want to do really irresponsible things—
I suddenly recalled Grayson’s taunts. “Can you and I have, you know…?”
“Have?” He propped his arms up on the threshold of the doorway, and when he leaned in, the movement did interesting, sinuous things to the muscles along his arms and shoulders. I was confident he was aware of that. “Have what?”
Keeping my arms around my bent legs and my gaze above the shoulders, I frowned. “Any other time you’re reading my mind, but now you’re not?”
Amusement curved his lips up farther. “You’re not being loud.”
I wasn’t sure I believed that. “Can I get pregnant?”
My eyes narrowed. “From you, you asshole.”
Dipping his chin, he bit down on his lower lip. “No, you can’t. I was not designed for potency to bring anything other than a release. Husher believed that the ability for an Origin like me to father a child would only hinder growth of my physical or mental abilities.”
Designed? I hated how that word was used as a way to remind him he was a thing created instead of a person. I absolutely hated how he used that word and others. And I hated how that choice had been taken from him at birth.
“And before you ask, like the Luxen, the Origins are not carriers, nor are we susceptible to diseases that can be transmitted,” he explained. I had been wondering how to ask that question. “Are you surprised? About the baby thing?”
I gave a little shake of my head. “A little. It was just something Grayson said.”
“I’ve got to ask why you’re naked thinking about something Grayson said. Not that I’m judging. He’s very attractive, and a lot of people find that standoffish ‘I’ve been deeply wounded so I lash out at everyone’ routine to be very alluring.”
I rolled my eyes, not dignifying any of that with a denial. “He said I probably had enough alien DNA in me to make things compatible enough for you and me to make a currently really bad life choice.”
“He may be right for other Origins, but he wouldn’t know my current baby-making-abilities status. The most recent Origins were also sterile. After all, what could be more distracting than having a child?” He pushed off the door, lowering his arms as he took a step forward. He stopped by the vanity. “Does that bother you?”
I wasn’t sure how to answer that, because kids were something that hadn’t even begun to be something I’d thought about. So, I decided to be honest. “I don’t know, because I don’t even know if I want a kid many, many years from now.” I thought of Kat’s screams and shuddered. “I don’t know if I’d ever want to do the whole birthing thing. Babies sort of scare me.”
“What about ten years from now? Twenty? When we’re not dealing with the Daedalus any longer and it’s just us raising a herd of llamas?”
The fact that Luc was thinking that far in advance—thinking about us that far in advance—caused my heart to skip happily in my chest. Not only did he think there was a future for us, there was potentially a future for us that didn’t involve the Daedalus or being stuck in the middle of a fight for world domination—
“Raising a herd of llamas?” I repeated.
He shrugged. “Always thought it would be cool to have a herd of llamas.”
I grinned. “I like llamas.”
Picturing us with a small house and a herd of llamas in our backyard made me laugh. It was the most ridiculous future.
The best future.
“We could always adopt one day,” I said. “If that’s what we wanted.”
“We could.” His head tilted. “Is the water still warm?”