Axel (Carolina Reapers 1) - Page 75

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Slowly, we both came down, our stuttered breaths smoothing into a more relaxed pattern as we held onto each other. “Are you okay?” I asked.

“Mmmmm,” she mumbled, but lifted her head for a kiss.

I gave it to her, then smoothed her hair back from her face. “God, I love you.”

“Good, because I love you too.” She grinned up at me as she swirled her hips. “Man, the counters are the perfect height.”

My grin was instant. “That they are. So what’s next for this week of seduction?”

Her nose crinkled as she thought. “I was thinking that either we could make breakfast, or we could test out the tub. We never seem to make it there because we get distracted when we’re naked.” She lifted her eyebrows. “After all, you don’t have ice time today.”

No ice and a naked Langley in my arms. My day was made.

“I’m only hungry for you.” Gathering her in my arms, I lifted her from the counter and carried her up the stairs to our bedroom where we started all over again.

“This is day one,” Langley muttered hours later, spent and sleepy in our bed as I curled around her.

“Day one?”

“It’s the first day of our non-contract marriage. No rules. No deadlines—”

“No divorce,” I whispered, then kissed the skin behind her ear.

“Never,” she agreed.

Looking at her there, her skin glowing with satisfaction, her eyes drowsy and her smile soft, I knew we were off to a fantastic start.

We’d never have to worry about choices in the future.

We’d always choose each other.

Epilogue

Langley

Summer

Axel spoke in rapid Swedish, instructing the kids gathered in full hockey gear around him while I worked from the bleachers, my laptop perched on my knees.

I hit send, sighing as I emailed another set of tasks to Faith.

I couldn’t have asked for a better partner in this business. A better friend. And I’d recently discovered that it wasn’t so hard to delegate, to split the workload.

Balance.

Balance was my new favorite concept. Something I’d never dreamed of having, but Axel had shown me many things I hadn’t thought possible.

My cheeks flushed thinking on some of those things he’d shown me last night.

And the one before that.

So many places I hadn’t allowed myself to be vulnerable. Exposed. Seduced.

Places only he could reach—my heart being the main one. The man claimed my heart and soul and body like no one before. Like no one ever could. And before, that terrified me. Now?

With Axel…I’d never felt safer or more confident, more desired.

Heat churned in my core, a craving I’d never slake. He’d promised me a night swim in his newly renovated house and infinity pool tonight—our newly renovated house, as he kept telling me. My breath caught just thinking of seeing him gliding through the water with nothing but the moon and stars illuminating his glorious body.

My friend.

Then my husband.

Then my…everything.

“You’re practically glowing,” Axel said, and I closed my laptop, setting it on the empty spot beside me. I hurried down the couple steps to the edge of the rink, smiling up at him. “Who emailed you to make you look like that?” He snaked a gloved hand around my waist, the damn half wall of the rink separating us.

I smacked his broad chest. “No one,” I said. “Was thinking about tonight.”

He smirked. “Can’t stop thinking about me wet and naked,” he said, laughing. “What a hard life you have.”

“Cocky Viking.” I made to pull out of his embrace, but he kept me firmly locked.

“I don’t care what you call me,” he said. “As long as I’m yours.”

I bit down on my lip, reminding myself over and over that there were children skating behind him. “Always.”

“That’s all I ever asked you for.” His gaze turned molten, and he planted the softest, most chaste kiss over my lips before releasing me. Skating backward, I saw all the promises of our future in those hazel eyes of his—long, steamy nights, and fun, Reaper-filled days.

An endless path of happiness.

Hard-earned and hard-won.

I’d expect nothing less from him, and I couldn’t wait to spend every second of the rest of forever with him.


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