When Darkness Ends(Guardians of Eternity,book 12)(14) by Alexandra Ivy
“It’s beautiful,” she breathed, feeling as if she were surrounded by a woodland glade despite the fact that the sun would never be allowed to stray beyond the window. “Really, really beautiful.”
Cyn made a strangled sound, as if pushed to the very edge.
“Bloody hell, you could drive a saint to drink,” he roared.
Ignoring the completely unfair accusation, she continued to stroke her fingers over the glossy wood.
“Where did you find the furnishings?”
“I made them.”
She sent him a startled glance. “You?”
“Why do you sound so surprised?”
Fallon frowned at the hint of defensiveness in his tone. Was he embarrassed to reveal his artistic talent?
“This is fey in design.”
“Oh.” He shrugged. “I was taken in by fairies while I was a foundling. Mika trained me to carve.”
Fallon couldn’t deny a stab of curiosity.
She’d watched this world enough to know it was extremely unusual for any demon to foster another species, let alone a fairy taking in a savage vampire.
It would be like a human adopting a full-grown lion.
But she wasn’t about to probe. Not when Cyn was already treating her as if she were some unwelcomed intruder who’d invaded his lair.
Like black mold.
“He must have been a master craftsman,” she instead murmured.
“Careful, princess. That was perilously close to a compliment,” he mocked.
Okay. That was it.
Turning her head, she stabbed him with a furious glare.
“Do you always have to be an ass?”
He abruptly grimaced, then without warning, he reached out to cup her cheek with his hand.
“No,” he said, his thumb brushing her lower lip.
Fallon stilled, sensing the electric tension that sizzled between them.
His lips twisted at the sudden uncertainty in her voice.
“We’re stuck together. At least for now,” he said, his gaze lowering to her mouth. Almost as if he was imagining how it would taste beneath his own. “We need a truce.”
Fallon shivered, the image of him tumbling her back onto the mattress and covering her with his hard body searing through her mind.
It was raw and primal and scary as hell.
You’re playing with fire, a voice whispered in the back of her mind. And you’re the one who’s going to get burned.
She covertly inched back on the mattress. He carried with him a force field that threatened to suck her in.
“It should be simple enough.” She managed to sound almost indifferent. Good for her.
His gaze remained locked on her lips. “Do you think so?”
“This is obviously a large lair. There’s truly no need to spend any time in each other’s company.”
Something that looked like . . . hurt . . . flared through his eyes before he abruptly dropped his hand and stepped back.
“Right,” he muttered, turning to head toward the door. “A perfect solution.”
“Wait.” Feeling ridiculously guilty, Fallon scrambled off the bed, her feet barely touching the floor as the door was being slammed shut.
With a shake of her head, she flopped back on the mattress, wondering why men had to be so . . . so impossible.
Cyn didn’t know why he was so pissed as he left the room, slamming the door behind him.
Hell, he should be pleased the aggravating little fairy wanted to stay out of his way. This was his home. The place he indulged in his favorite vices.
The last thing he wanted was an intrusive, nagging, obscenely tempting . . .
He muttered a curse, storming toward a wide staircase to make his way to his private chambers that were built belowground. The entire castle was wrapped in spells of illusion as well as thick magic that prevented any stray trespassers. There were also heavy stained-glass windows that shielded the interior from the sun.
But old habits were hard to break. Especially for a vampire who was as old as Cyn.
Entering the cavernous room that was filled with ebony furniture and lush gold and black tapestries, Cyn crossed to the desk that was surrounded by floor-to-ceiling bookcases. Yanking open the top drawer, he pulled out a cell phone that was always kept charged and sent a text to his top lieutenant, using an encrypted code that warned her to meet him in his lair without alerting anyone as to where she was going.
Then, with long strides he entered the fully modern bathroom and stripped off the ridiculous robe, still bristling with a baffling sense of annoyance. Then, stepping into the shower he turned on the water, shivering beneath the icy blast.
Okay. He was attracted to Fallon. Maybe even more than just attracted. Despite her prudish nature and irritating arrogance, she was the most stunningly beautiful woman he’d ever seen. What man wouldn’t be fantasizing about having her spread across his bed?
Or on a fur rug in front of a blazing fire.
Or in a moonlit meadow with a thousand stars spread above them.
He cursed again, scrubbing himself clean and stepping out of the shower.
He’d just pulled on a pair of faded jeans and a loose cable-knit sweater when there was the sound of approaching footsteps. Returning to the outer chamber, Cyn watched the female vampire stroll through the doorway.
A small smile curved his lips.
Lise looked like a china doll. A tiny body that was currently covered by tight black leggings and a long, flowing shirt. Straight black hair that was chopped just above her shoulders, pale, delicate features, and startling blue eyes that could disarm the most suspicious predator.
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