Bound to Darkness(Midnight Breed,book 13)(19) by Lara Adrian
In the quiet moments after everyone left the arena, Rune found Carys’s gaze on him. Her expression was questioning, concerned. “Sounds like you’ve had quite a day.”
He made a wry sound in the back of his throat. “Had better. What about you? Working late tonight?”
“Yes, we rotated some of the exhibits, so I wanted to make sure everything went smoothly in Jordana’s absence. But I actually stayed longer than I’d planned because I was trying to track down some secured information on Reginald Crowe for my father.”
“Covert intel-gathering for the Order?” Rune couldn’t hide his surprise. He reached out to take the soiled cloths from her hands and pitched them in the nearby trash bin. “I didn’t think you were interested in warrior business.”
“I’m not. My family’s always looked to my brother to pick up the torch for the Order, not me.” She gave a no-big-deal shrug¸ but Rune could see the excitement still glowing in her face. Her bright blue eyes were charged with enthusiasm and pride like he’d never seen in her before. She looked exuberant, a lioness who’d just run her first prey to ground.
Carys might be a rebel at heart, but inside, she was also an intelligent, stubbornly determined woman who could accomplish anything she set her mind to. Why she had let herself fall for him, he would never understand.
“You’d be a hell of an asset to the Order, you know.” Stepping closer, he reached out to lift her chin on his fingertips. “And you’d make a hell of an adversary to anyone who crossed you.”
She grinned at him. “Then you’d better hope you stay on my good side.”
“Baby, from where I’m standing, all I see are good sides,” he said, drawing back to take a long, appreciative look at her.
She laughed, then slipped off her heels and ducked around him to walk toward the open cage at the center of the arena. “So, what happened with Slade last night?”
Without waiting for him to answer, she gave him a longer view of her tempting backside as she stepped into the cage in her black dress pants and wine-colored silk blouse. She bent to pick up his spiked gloves and steel torc from the floor where he’d dropped them after halting the night’s match.
“Jagger and Vallan said you and Slade had a disagreement.”
“Slade’s an asshole. I got tired of seeing his face around here, so I told him to get lost or I’d help him get dead.”
She swung a look back at him, eyes widened, caramel waves sifting over her shoulders. “That must’ve been some disagreement.”
“It was.” Rage still simmering in his veins when he recalled the fighter’s words and the offending intimation that he would even think for a second that he could put his hands on Carys.
Rune followed her over to the cage now, disturbed by the sight of her inside the steel mesh ring. She didn’t belong in there, and not just because she was dressed for a day at the museum.
Hell, in truth, she didn’t belong with him either, but that hadn’t stopped him from pursuing her all those weeks ago. Seducing her right into his bed that first night.
“Are you going to tell me what happened, Rune? What did you and he argue about?”
“Me?” She pivoted, sparks lighting in her eyes as she looked at him through the wire. “What about me?”
“Slade said some things I didn’t like.” Rune all but growled his reply. “He was under the deluded impression that I might ever let him near you while I was still breathing, so I had to set him straight.”
“Oh.” Her brows knit as she walked slowly back to him. “You set him straight, did you? And what do you mean by that?”
Rune watched her hips sway with each gliding step. Hips his hands itched to touch them—to grasp onto them and drag her close. “I explained—not in so many words—that you were off-limits. I made sure he knew you were mine.”
“Am I?” A smile danced at the corners of her mouth.
She was toying with him now, enjoying his possessiveness. “You know you are.”
“Mmm, but I always like hearing you say it.”
“You’re mine, Carys.”
As she stood there, holding the accoutrements of his brutal profession in her hands, for an instant he was gripped with a dread he couldn’t justify or explain. Nor could he shake it.
Scowling, he blew out a low curse. “Come out of there, now. You shouldn’t be handling those things.”
When she didn’t obey him, he stepped inside and took them from her loose grasp. The urge to smash the gloves and torc against the nearest wall was almost overwhelming.
Carys’s hand came up to his face, caressing his rigid jaw. Fire glittered in her irises, and her smile turned a little wicked. “You defended my honor.”
Oh, she was enjoying that fact all right. The sparks in her eyes intensified, desire lighting them with a heat that Rune’s body responded to like dry tinder.
Looping her arms around the back of his neck, she tilted her head up to brush her mouth against his. “You’re my knight in shining armor.”
He scoffed. “Hardly that.”
“You are. You just don’t know it.” She held his gaze, studying him. “I would defend you too, Rune. No matter what. To anyone. To the death, if that’s what it came down to.”
The very thought froze the blood in his veins. “Christ, don’t say that. Don’t ever fucking say that.”
Copyright © 2015 by Read Best Books Free Online