“Who else is here?” I asked. I undid the clip that held up my multicolored hair. Everyone at work thought I had highlights put in. The truth was my hair was auburn, with stripes of black, red, and blonde through it. It fell to the middle of my back, and other than my eyes, I hailed it as my best feature.
“My brothers are gone for the night. We have the place to ourselves. Would you care to go upstairs? Or have something to drink first?”
Brothers. Wonderful. A male-dominated house. If they’re like the other lions I’ve come across, then they’ll fight for supremacy. I won’t fall into that trap again. I shuddered to think about my mother. My stepfather never let her forget her indiscretions with his best friend. “So, where’s the rest of the harem?”
Shea’s jaw hardened. “I’m not like the other males. Neither are the other men here. We don’t feel that women should be subjected to the old ways. They should choose who they wish for a mate. Collin and William are outcasts from their families. They saved my life. We’ve been best friends ever since, brothers. Does any of that bother you?”
“No. I’m sorry. I have no right to judge. We all have our secrets.” I glanced down at my feet. The black heels were starting to kill me. The lust cooled the more time I had to think about what I was doing. Maybe this is a bad idea. I was stupid to think he’d want me. My lack of self-confidence was eating me up again. The very monster I’d fought for years.
“Hey.” He lifted my chin. The touch of his fingers burned my skin. I tried to focus, but I could barely keep myself together when I looked into his eyes. He made me shaky more than any other man had done before. “I know that look. No beating yourself up. I should’ve told you about my roommates, but this happened so quickly. I wasn’t expecting it. Or you. Maybe we should stop and do this right. But, damn, it’s taking everything in me not to rip your clothes off and make love to you. I’ve never been pulled to another woman this way before.” Shea ran his fingers down my cheek. The confusion in his eyes was apparent, but so was the passion I stirred in him.
The feel of his fingers comforted me. I couldn’t deny the longing I had to be near him. My mother had often spoken about what it would be like to find a mate. She had said at the first touch you would know. At one point before I left, she confided in me that the one night she and my father had spent together was the best of her life. She wished that moment of happiness for me before I walked out the door.
“Don’t you feel it, too?” He cupped my face in his hands.
I shook my head. “I-I don’t know. Maybe I—”
Shea brought his lips to mine. In that instant, I was enveloped in bliss. My nerves sang from his sweet, luscious lips on mine. The spark between us ignited. I rested my hands on his chest and felt the erratic beat of his heart. I could barely concentrate from the intensity of the subtle pressure of his lips on mine. The cat inside me bellowed to be set free. I inhaled and smelled his desire. His cock poked into my belly. My nipples ached to be touched. When he broke the kiss, his hand wound through mine, and he led me upstairs. I didn’t hesitate to follow. I barely noticed my surroundings. We walked down a long hall. His scent was all over the air and the carpet. At the end of the hall were double doors. Two other rooms were off the hallway, but their doors were closed. He opened the double doors and led me into a massive bedroom. In the middle was a king-sized bed. Above that was a painting of an African landscape with lions lounging in the sun. The bed was thrown together. Some clothes were piled in the corner, overflowing from a hamper. His walk-in closet was open, with racks of suits and shoes on the floor. I wonder what he does. Banker?
Stockbroker? Con artist?
“Excuse the mess. I didn’t have any plans on bringing anyone home.”
I crossed my arms over my chest. “If you did, then I’d expect soft music. Candles. Flowers of some sort. Anything to set the mood.” I crept closer to him as I felt the courage I had earlier settle back into my nature. I bit my lip and began unbuttoning his shirt. My bright purple nails clashed against the color of his shirt. I got to the last button and tugged the rest from his pants. I stepped out of my heels, which made me another inch shorter, so my head came to his shoulders. Shea had to be at least six two. I loved tall men. I ran my hand over his flat stomach, feeling the indentations of his muscles. I planted my lips on his chest, then slid my tongue along his pecs until I found his nipple. I drew it between my teeth and nibbled on it, getting a taste for his skin. Salt mixed with earth and the slightly acrid taste of his sweat. He slipped my jacket from my shoulders and trailed his hands down my arms. I nipped at his flesh a little harder and heard him cry out.
“Do you want flowers? Music? Chocolate? Name it, and I’ll get it for you.”
I flicked my tongue over his neck and tugged on his ear. “Not at the moment. Right now, I just want you.”
© Crymsyn Hart
Author: Crymsyn Hart
Publisher: Amira Press, LLC
Genre: Shape-shifter Multiple Partners Rubenesque
Being a hybrid, Alison has never really thought about having a mate before until she meets Shea. One whiff of his enticing scent, she’s head over heels for him. The only thing she doesn’t know is that Shea has two other roommates hidden away at home.
When the past comes calling, Alison is forced to face her worst nightmare. With Shea and Collin, her second mate, they have to rescue William from the clutches of her stepfather. Together they will overcome her past and Alison will find all the love and more than she has ever dreamed of.