Heaps of thanks go out to my friend Lawan Williams without whom this book would not have been created. Her spirit and encouragement kept me writing.
To my writing circle: Chesapeake Romance Writers, and writing buddies, Denise, Felicia, and Cheryl. Your support has keep me afloat many many days.
To my family, God bless you always.
Keth snapped awake. A tiny house cat was snuggled up against him. When he moved, it sneezed delicately and scooted closer. Keth eased himself away. A sharp pain in his side reminded him of his predicament and the night's events. He stretched his body while absorbing the sensual awareness from the nearby human woman. The woman with her strong, beautiful spirit.
Being with her had started to heal him. His bones were stitching back together; the pain lessening. His friends had brought him to this house because of the powerful healing he needed. Since ancient times, energy had flowed between Baashi and humans in a therapeutic symbiosis, benefiting both.
A pulse on the side of his head teased Keth with the woman's nearness. The bond between them was already woven thick. His inner mys itched to join with her. Leaping to his feet, Keth concentrated on transforming. A knot of pain protested the exertion of his power but he focused harder. With sparkling and crackling, his body wrenched into man form and he stood upright, naked, shaking long dark hair back from his eyes. The woman's house cat backed away from him, hissing and flicking its tail in antagonism. Keth ignored it.
Scratches marred his muscular legs, a bruise discolored the golden skin over his ribs. He ran one hand through his hair. He still had a headache, but he felt much better than when he arrived here. He looked towards the woman's door.
One more exchange with her should finish his healing. On bare feet, air caressing his naked skin, he padded across the living room. But when he reached for the doorknob, the little cat sprang out and sank its teeth into his toe. Keth cursed, his leg reflexively kicking out. The animal tumbled across the floor and righted itself at once, hissing and arching its back. Keth hissed a warning of his own. The cat backed down and Keth turned the knob on the door.
There was no sound within the room as he eased the door open. Keth slipped inside and shut the door behind him, leaning back against it. The woman on the bed lay in a deep sleep due to the enspelling nature of the mys bond woven between them. A stream of light from the slightly opened bathroom door flowed over her honey-caramel skin. She was an exquisite dessert laid out for him. Her hair was hidden by a cranberry colored wrap, which suited her skin tone, but he knew rich mahogany waves of hair fell past her shoulders. Dark lashes swept her cheeks and rosy lips were parted. The unconscious sensuality of the scene warmed his core and caused his erection to thicken and rise further. He hungered for the most direct connection, physical joining.
She was ripe. He knew from the energy pulsing between them that she was a good match for him, capable of direct connection with her inner core. Anticipation forced his cock harder, higher.
Keth sucked in his breath. The woman's aura drew him across the room. Mys leapt out wrapping around both of them, knitting their energy together. He stopped beside the bed, holding his breath. He was so shaken that it was an effort to keep her shielded from awareness of him.
Restlessness touched the woman, her weight shifting on the bed. He slid between the sheets with her. She jerked with a slight moan as if getting away from him.
"Shhhh," he hushed her, stroking her face, pushing her deeper into a dream-like state where he could merge his energy with hers.
She melted against his body and he breathed in the scent of her, a heady concoction of flowery body wash and woman. His eagerness hitched to an even higher level.
His head pounded as the spell of the mys hugged them in a cocoon. Perhaps it was because of his injuries, perhaps because it had been so long since he'd made love, but he had never felt so drawn to any woman before.
Enthralled, he brushed his face along her cheek and down her neck, his other hand tracing her nipple through the silken fabric of a short gown. The tip seemed to leap up into his palm.
He dragged her against him, kissed her, pushed her legs apart, then slid his fingers into the hot softness between her legs. She was so ripe he had no trouble pushing in to the last knuckle.
"Oh!" Her mouth pursed. Squirming, she tried to press her legs together.
He stroked her inner nub for the pleasure of hearing her moan. Her legs fell open again, her slit overflowed with moisture. Oh, yes, she was ready. No amount of mental exertion on his part could make her respond like this otherwise. His power surged as the passion between them swelled.
She was quivering apart. He snatched away his hand and mouth, making her cry out and thrash in protest. In the next moment, he was on her, the tip of his shaft at her cleft. He wanted to be inside her with a wild compulsion but restrained himself with monumental effort. Taking her too roughly might break the bond, shake her out of the spell. But by Baash, he wanted to take her until she screamed, push her thighs apart, and shove his rod into her to the hilt so it touched her womb.
Even in her deep hypnotic sleep, she showed him that she wanted all of him, would welcome being taken without restraint. This wasn't merely his mys controlling her. In fact, with a moment of startling clarity, he wondered just how in control he was. His body, his soul, trembled with the force of her power. At the moment he couldn't tell who was more enspelled. Boundaries were meaningless.
He was about to go over the edge, roaring out in orgasm. He trembled with the effort to slow it down. This couldn't be happening to him. He'd never lost control with a human woman. He pressed his face against her breasts, trying to slow his breathing.
When he regained a semblance of control, he began to rock in and out of her again. He nearly cried out as the swollen head of his penis responded to the embrace of the strong muscles of her womanly enclosure.
"Oh yes," she moaned, her knees pressing against his thighs. "Yes, please, more."
He obliged her, driving in and out until her innermost muscles made way for him. Reaching full penetration was like coming home.
He thrust inside her, his hips grinding faster and faster until the only thing that kept their bodies from igniting was how wet they were.
At last she arched and screamed and his passion broke loose. He slammed himself into her over and over. This was transformation and ecstasy beyond the physical. His consciousness narrowed on the union between them as lovers.
He came back to himself with her in his arms and her legs tight around his back. Her muscles trembled, her womanly sheath quivering with aftershocks. He buried his face in her hair which had come loose from the scarf while they rode one another.
She sighed, relaxing, still sleeping. Her breathing came a little heavier and a slight film of perspiration burnished her honey skin.
He pushed up on one elbow, gazing down at her flushed face in wonder. Her lips seemed rosier and plumper than before. Crazily, he wished they could do this when they were both conscious. That was impossible of course. The Baashi couldn't make themselves known to her kind.
He dropped his face back into the valley of her neck and shoulder. He rubbed his face against her breasts, loving the burn of her nipples against his chin and cheek. She began to moan and writhe again. And his penis hardened again, his scrotum swelling. In moments, it seemed, he was back inside her woman's core and crazy with need. Once more he exploded inside her.
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