In Bed with the Devil(Scoundrels of St. James,Book 1)(70) by Lorraine Heath
His Catherine. She wasn’t his. At least not beyond their time at Heatherwood.
True to the brand that marked him as a thief, he was stealing moments with her, moments that didn’t rightfully belong to him. He should have resisted her, but he had no regrets. He’d have always wondered. And now he knew. In all things, she was
Her eyes fluttered open and she smiled at him. “I was right. A devil is better than a saint.”
He rolled until she was on her back, and he was on his side. “How do you know? You’ve never had a saint.”
“But I can’t imagine that he could bring me as much pleasure.” She took his hand and pressed a kiss to the scar that marred the inside of his thumb. “I hate that they did this to you.”
He took her hand, unfolded it, and looked at the angry red scar. He ran his tongue over it, thought of all she’d risked in order to save him. “I hate that they did this to you.”
“I’m not. You might not lick my palm otherwise.”
“I shall lick your palm and a good deal more again before the night is done.”
“I think you talk a good deal more in bed than out.”
“Not usually.” He grimaced. It was bad form to refer to being with other ladies, but the truth was that tonight had been very different from any previous encounter with a lady that he’d experienced. Catherine was remarkable. He wasn’t certain that he could ever have enough of her.
He cradled her breast, flicked his thumb over her nipple, took delight in watching it pearl. “It shouldn’t hurt so much the next time.”
“Will there be a next time—with you, I mean.”
His stomach knotted with the thought of her having a next time with someone other than him, but he thought he successfully managed to keep his thoughts from showing.
Instead, he grinned at her and said, “If I have my way.”
“Tell me what I can do to make it better for you.”
“If you make it any better for me, Catherine, I’m likely to die from the attention.”
She smiled, and he saw how his words pleased her.
“But it would be a lovely way to go wouldn’t it?” she asked.
“I’d rather stay around if you don’t mind.”
“I don’t. Not at all. But I want to know that I please you.”
“You do. Very much. You never struck me as a woman who needs reassurances.”
“Whether or not a woman needs them, she likes to have them.” She skimmed her fingers over his chest. “I like touching you.”
“I like you touching me.”
She furrowed her brow. “I wish you hadn’t had such a harsh life.”
“There are those who had it much harsher. Some still do.”
“That’s the reason you’re working toward prison reform.”
He shrugged. “I will once my peers accept me, but that’s not pleasant bedchamber conversation.”
“Well, then, what is?”
“This.” He lowered his head and kissed her, relishing the eagerness with which she returned his attentions.
She knew the very worst about him, and yet still she came to him. Knew the very worst about him, yet still she welcomed him. No hesitation, no turning him aside because she feared his world or worried that she wasn’t good enough.
He didn’t want anyone else in this bed with them. Catherine deserved to be the only one on his mind, the only one he thought about, the only one he wanted to please.
She was the only one he wanted to please.
At that moment, no one else mattered. Nothing else mattered. Not the possible danger that might be rushing toward them. Not the innocents who needed to be protected.
Nothing mattered except Catherine, now, in his bed.
The musky scent of heated sex mingled with her sweet rose fragrance. He inhaled deeply, filling his nostrils, savoring the unique perfume they created together. Kissing her deeply, he slid his hand along the concave of her stomach, tangled his fingers in the springy curls nested between her thighs. She was wet and hot, ready for what he had to offer her.
He ran his hand up to her hip, trailed his mouth along her throat.
“Oh, God, please don’t stop,” she gasped.
He nestled his face in the curve of her shoulder, pressed a kiss just below her ear, and rasped, “Have you fantasized about this?”
“More than you’ll ever know.”
“How did you know what to fantasize?”
She rolled her head from side to side as though lost in ecstasy. “Instinct I suppose. Must we talk?”
Chuckling low, he embraced her and rolled to his back, bringing her with him, listening to her tiny squeal as she landed atop him, straddling his hips, looking down on him, while her glorious, abundant hair formed a curtain around them. He threaded his fingers through the golden strands, brought her mouth down to his, and kissed her eagerly, hungrily.
He loved the way she held nothing back, didn’t pretend timidity. She wasn’t
embarrassed by her nakedness. Somehow he wasn’t surprised by that. His dear, bold Catherine was in this bed with him now, just as she’d been in Dodger’s back room beating him at cards, just as she’d been in that alley fighting to save him, just as she’d come to his library in the middle of the night to make him a daring proposition in order to protect a friend.
He’d never known anyone like her, never known anyone who mesmerized him as she did. Had never known anyone he wanted more.
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