In Bed with the Devil(Scoundrels of St. James,Book 1)(69) by Lorraine Heath
“You’re so beautiful,” he rasped. “More so than I imagined.”
“You’ve thought about me?”
He gave her a deliciously wicked and sensuous smile. “Oh, yes, Catherine. That night at the first ball, I imagined you just like this, spread out over my bed in all your naked glory. And you have haunted me ever since.”
He lowered his mouth to hers, his tongue meeting no resistance, because she wanted to taste him as much as he wanted to taste her. Whiskey was ripe upon his tongue, a flavor that intoxicated her, reminded her of the night when she’d almost lost him. Desperation fueled her passion, desperation to know him in every way that a woman could know a man.
Luke didn’t know if he’d ever lain with a woman as enthusiastic as Catherine. She touched him everywhere as though she couldn’t get enough of him. Not only with her hands, but with her mouth, her lips, her tongue. She kissed each of his scars with tenderness, then ran her tongue over his chest as though she were a cat and he were the milk to be lapped from the bowl. She was by turns, bold and shy, looking to him for approval, her lovely blue eyes darkening with desire when he granted it.
She was everything a man could wish for in a lover.
Claybourne was everything a woman could wish for in a lover, Catherine thought as he skimmed his hands along her body. By turns, he was considerate and gentle, rough and demanding.
She’d grumbled at him for talking so much, and he’d told her that he didn’t have to speak at all, but he did. Near her ear, he urged her boldness on with a raspy voice that more often than not sounded as though he were strangling.
Touch him there and there and there.
Hold him tightly. Stroke him slowly.
And when her fingers faltered, he laid his hand over hers, guiding her motions, his gaze holding hers, daring her not to look away, daring her to see the smoldering passion and to know what she was capable of doing to him. She was capable of driving him to madness. He was not a quiet lover and each sound he made was music to her ears, enticed her into giving him more so that she might receive more.
A fine sheen of sweat coated his throat. Sweat belonged to laborers, not gentlemen, but she kissed his throat anyway, felt his pulse jump beneath her lips. Felt her own pulse leap when he buried his fingers in her hair and blanketed her mouth with his own.
She didn’t know what she’d expected. Something quick, painful, but still somehow exquisite. But this was more than she’d ever imagined. Beautiful in its intensity, frightening because she didn’t know how she’d live without it when it went away.
He touched her everywhere, intimately, with his fingers, his mouth as though he cherished every inch of her, as though she could possibly mean as much to him as he did to her.
He moved back down to her feet, and this time when he kissed his way up her body, he managed to wedge himself firmly between her thighs.
“I wish I could do this without hurting you,” he rasped.
She eased her back off the bed and pressed a kiss to the center of his chest, before falling back to the pillow. “You’ll only hurt me if we don’t finish what we’ve begun.”
She felt him pushing, seeking entry, felt her body welcoming him, watched the concentration on his face, almost blurted out that she loved him—
And then the pain came, sharp and quick, and he groaned so loudly that she thought it had hurt him as well, but when he opened his eyes, there was naught there but supreme satisfaction.
“You’re so tight,” he gasped, “so hot. Marvelous.”
He kissed her then, his tongue darting and swirling as his hips thrust and circled. She couldn’t deny that she felt discomfort, but it gave way to sensations that rippled through her in undulating waves of pleasure.
Their bodies slick, grew slicker. Their flesh hot grew hotter.
He grabbed her hands, intertwined their fingers, held them in place on either side of her head as he pumped his body into hers, his deep feral groans echoing around them.
“Oh, Lord!” She’d never known sensations such as this, thought she might fall apart as he ground his hips against hers.
Then the cataclysm came, wondrous in its intensity, as she tightened around him, mewling sounds echoing around her. She was vaguely aware of his body shuddering, hers pulsing around him. They were both breathing harshly when he kissed the curve of her shoulder and rolled off her. She barely had time to feel bereft at his leaving, before he slid his arm around her and drew her up against his side, guiding her head to the crook of his shoulder, the perfect place to listen to the wild thudding of his heart. And listen to it she did, felt it as well, with her hand touching his chest.
“Are you all right?” he asked.
“Perfect.” Breathless, languid, tingling all over, but perfect.
He laughed, a deep rich sound of pure satisfaction. “Good.”
His breathing began to even out. She tilted her face up slightly, saw his closed eyes, and realized he’d gone to sleep. If she didn’t feel so lethargic herself, she might have been disappointed that their night together was already over.
Instead, she pressed a kiss to his chest and joined him in slumber.
Luke awoke with a start. Usually he didn’t sleep when he came to the estate because the dreams were so disturbing. He was always being chased, trying to hide—
But it wasn’t a dream that woke him this time.
He looked down on the woman sprawled halfway over his body, her small hand curled in the center of his chest. If he’d not encountered her maidenhead, he’d have thought she was as experienced as any courtesan. But then he wasn’t surprised that she hadn’t been timid. Not his Catherine.
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