He stopped those thoughts. What in the hell was thinking? Actually, what was he doing? Because he knew, deep down, he knew that tonight wasn’t about getting off or fucking an obsession out of his system. It was nothing like that.
So what did that mean?
Lucian didn’t know as he trailed his fingers down her bare arm. She wiggled in response, pressing against his side, and he was immediately hard. Just like that. She wasn’t even awake and trying to seduce him, and he was already seduced.
Running his fingers down her side and over her hip, he knew he should let her sleep. Hell, he should probably get some himself, but that’s not what he did.
He eased onto his side, smiling when she shifted onto her stomach, making this little murmuring sound. Brushing her hair aside, he pressed a kiss to the nape of her neck and then followed her spine all the way down to the curve of her ass, kissing and licking.
Lucian knew the moment she was awake. Her body stiffened for a second and then relaxed. He rose behind her, planting a knee on either side of her.
She drew one leg up, her hips moving restlessly as he slipped a hand farther down. “Mmm,” she murmured. “What are you up to?”
“Seconds,” he told her. “I want seconds.”
And he got them, with Julia on her belly and her ass up, pressing back against him as he gripped her hips. He took those seconds, and when he was done, his body slick with sweat and hers trembling with the aftershocks of release, he wanted more.
Lucian needed more.
Twisting her hair up into a knot, Julia shoved a thick bobby pin into the strands, securing the mess of hair into place. “Are you sure you want to do this?”
Lucian didn’t look over at her as he thumbed through a ring of keys. “Yeah.”
Julia did not believe that for one second. From the moment he showed up while she was working with Madeline and said he wanted to get the stuff out of his mother’s room for his sister, it was like a totally different person manifested in front of her.
He’d gone quiet and remote, and Lucian was never quiet—ever—or remote, especially not last night . . . or this morning, when he woke her once again, this time with his hand between her legs and his mouth on her breasts.
He got seconds.
And then thirds.
So she wasn’t taking the weird vibe he was throwing off personally. She also wasn’t letting herself focus on what had happened between them. Not a single part of her regretted last night, not at all. He’d been pretty up-front last night about who he was. Lucian didn’t need to tell her this was going to be a one-night stand kind of thing. She was able to read between the lines of what he said. They weren’t starting a relationship.
They weren’t starting anything.
But that didn’t mean . . . well, that didn’t mean she didn’t care about Lucian. That she was okay with what he was forcing himself to do.
At first she’d thought it had something to do with Daniel, but even after he left and an entire day later, Lucian was still silent.
She’d fretted over how to handle this as the afternoon progressed and he helped move his sister back to the bed. But it had been Lucian who suggested they get this over with, and so here they were, standing in the wing of the house Julia had never stepped foot in while Livie sat with Madeline.
The left wing looked exactly the same—long halls with numerous, closed doors, and flickering wall sconces, except it was darker. It seemed as if the bright sunlight from outside couldn’t penetrate any of the windows. There was a chill in the air that wasn’t present in the other side of the house. Since Devlin and Gabe stayed on this side, she imagined they preferred to keep it cooler and that was the reason for the temperature differences. The illogical part of her brain was dwelling over the ghost stories Lucian had told her about as she glanced down the dark, narrow hall they’d walked through.
Lucian cursed as he stared down at the keys.
She felt bad for him. Going through his mother’s things had to be painful, no matter how many years had passed. Biting down on her lip, she glanced over her shoulder as she tapped her foot restlessly. Lucian didn’t need to be doing this. She didn’t want him to be doing this. And she knew he probably felt like he had to. That this was his sister he was helping and this was his mother’s room—a room that obviously wasn’t entered often, because it had taken a good thirty minutes for Lucian to find where Livie had the keys stashed.
“Got it.” Lucian shoved the key into the lock. A click echoed like thunder, and with a twist of his wrist, the door inched open. The scent of vanilla wafted out.
Lucian didn’t move as Julia peeked through the foot or so opening. The room was dark, so she saw nothing. Wetting her lips, she placed her hand on his arm. His head swung to hers, and those eyes closed off.
She drew in a short breath, her mind racing to find a way to get him to agree to not do this. “I’m hungry,” she blurted out.
His brows knitted.
Okay. She needed to elaborate on that. “I didn’t get a chance to eat breakfast. Someone made me late this morning. No names mentioned.”
Lucian’s expression softened by a degree.
“So I’m hungry. Do you think you can make me a sandwich?”
He now stared at her like she’d grown a third boob in the center of her forehead. “You’re asking me to make you a sandwich?”
Fixing a smile on her face, she nodded. “A grilled cheese sandwich. I really love them, and I haven’t had one in forever.”
He tilted his head to the side. “A grilled cheese sandwich?”
“Yes. I’m not particular with the type of bread. I like the good old unhealthy stuff—white bread, but if you have wheat or whatever, I’ll take that.” She could feel her cheeks warming, but now she kind of wanted a cheese sandwich, like for real. “Can you make me one?”
Lucian just stared at her.
“I would do it myself, but I don’t want to touch anything in that kitchen. Everything looks like it’s worth more than my life.” She was smiling so widely she feared her face would crack. “But I’m really hungry and you wouldn’t like me if I’m really hungry.”
“And why is that?”
“I get really cranky. Like next level mean,” she told him, which wasn’t a lie. “If you Google hungry, you’d find a picture of me glaring back at you. Plus, I get super dizzy and sick if I don’t eat when I’m hungry.”
“Yep.” That wasn’t exactly true. Neither was her next statement. “I think it’s a low blood sugar kind of thing.”
“You think?” One brow lifted. “Shouldn’t you eat some candy then?”
Crap. “Do you have candy? Because that would be great, too. Candy and a grilled cheese sandwich.”
Lucian dipped his chin and looked away as he lifted a hand, clasping the back of his neck. Silence stretched out between them, and she really thought he was going to tell her no, but then he sighed. “Lock up when you’re done.”
“Meet me in the kitchen and I’ll have a grilled cheese sandwich waiting for you.” He held up the keys. “And candy . . . for your blood sugar problems.”
She bit the inside of her cheek as he dropped the keys in her palm. “Will do.”
Lucian started to turn away and stopped. A moment passed, and then he stepped into her. Without saying a word, he cupped her face in his hands and lowered his head.
Her breath hitched.
Kissing her softly, he dragged his thumbs along the curve of her cheeks. This was a different kind of kiss. It wasn’t frenzied like all the others. This . . . this felt like a thank-you.
Then Lucian was walking away.
Julia closed her eyes, exhaling raggedly as she placed her fingers against her lips.
“Goodness,” she whispered, dropping her hand. Time to focus. Mentally giving herself a pat on the back, she pushed the door open the rest of the way and stepped instead, blindly feeling the wall until she found the switch. She flipped it on and light flooded the room.
The room looked lived in, like it was still in use. The pretty lavender bedspread was turned down, revealing a mountain of pillows at the head. Cream-colored furniture dotted the room—a chaise and sitting chair, standing oval mirror and two dressers. There was a pair of glasses on the nightstand by the bed. Perfume bottles and pieces of jewelry littered the top of a mirrored bureau. A door to the left was open, revealing a deep closet.