Dragonbane(Dark Hunter,book 24)(79) by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Grateful to have it over and done with, Seraphina had moved forward to help him when someone touched her on the shoulder. She gasped, thinking it was another attack, then relaxed as she saw Falcyn behind her. She glanced past him, looking for her mate. “Where’s Max?”
The expression on his face made her stomach tighten.
“What?” she gasped.
When he didn’t respond right away, she felt all the air get sucked out of her lungs as if she’d been punched.
“No… he’s coming.” Her tone brooked no argument. Max would be here. He’d promised and he never broke his word.
Tears glistened in Falcyn’s eyes as he gently took her hand and teleported her from the bar into the attic with Carson and a redheaded woman she didn’t know.
In his dragon form and on his side, Max lay on the ground with blood pooling around him. Carson and the woman were trying to stop the bleeding, but nothing was slowing it down. It ran everywhere and coated Max’s beautiful scales.
When Carson saw her, he winced. “I’m sorry, Sera. There’s nothing we can do. He took a wound straight to his heart. Honestly? I don’t know how he made it back alive and is still breathing.”
“No… no!” She ran to Max’s large head and threw herself against his neck. His faint labored breaths rattled ominously in his chest and throat. “Maxis? Can you hear me?”
I hear you, Seramia.
He was too weak to even speak. And even the voice in her head was nothing more than the faintest of whispers.
Tears blinded her as she clutched at him. “You can’t leave me! Not now. You promised me you wouldn’t break my heart.”
I’m sorry. He slid one bloodied, taloned paw toward her so that he could touch her hip.
Sobbing, Sera thought about all the times she’d slaughtered dragons in her past and had taken so much pride in it. Had stupidly worn their hides and scales as trophies. Was this her payback for that cruelty?
She brushed her hand against his scaly ear and the prickly spined ridges along the back of his skull. “Please don’t leave me, Max. I don’t want to live without you. I love you… I’ve only ever loved you, my dragon lord.”
And then she felt it. That last expulsion of breath as he died in her arms. His entire body went limp.
Throwing her head back, she screamed out in misery. It wasn’t fair. It wasn’t right.
Damn you, Fates!
She ignored Falcyn as she cradled Max’s head and continued to cry against his beautiful scales, wishing she could have one more day with him. Wishing she’d never allowed him to leave. Why had she ever chosen her tribe over him?
Why hadn’t she left with him when he’d asked her? This was all her fault. They could have been happy together.
I’m such an idiot!
“Seraphina? Look at me.”
It took everything she had to force herself to draw a ragged breath and lift her head to meet Falcyn’s gaze. She realized that Carson and the woman had left them alone in the attic.
And Falcyn held something in his hand. “If you love him, really love him, we can bring him back.”
He swallowed hard and licked his lips before he spoke again. “What I’m about to do is forbidden. It’s the darkest of magick. But I can do it, only if you mean what you say. Because if you don’t… you’ll consign both my brother and me to someplace I don’t want to be and to the cruelest of fates.”
Her vision swam. “Please bring him back to me. Whatever it takes. If there’s a price for this, I’ll pay it.”
“Then close your eyes. Think of your fondest memory of my brother and hold it dear. Whatever you do, don’t look until I tell you. Understood?”
“Yes.” She clenched her eyes tight and held on to Max as she thought back to the night they’d first met. To the sight of him stripping her clothes from her body as he kissed and caressed her in a wild frenzy.
She could still hear his deep, infectious laughter in her ear at the way she jerked his clothes from him to uncover more and more of his incredible flesh.
“Eager, are you?” he’d asked with a grin.
“Don’t waste your tongue with words. I’ve much better uses for it.”
Laughing again, he’d obliged her with a searing kiss that had left her breathless and weak. She’d barely loosened his pants before he was deep inside her, filling her to capacity and thrusting against her hips while he held her against the closed door.
With her legs wrapped around his lean waist, she’d met him stroke for stroke, growling and urging him on. She’d raked her hands through his hair, delighting in the sensual way it felt sliding between her fingers as he sated the ache inside her. Then she’d run her hands over his strong, broad shoulders and down his back so that she could savor the sensation of his muscles rippling while he pleased her even more.
It hadn’t taken any time at all for her to come, screaming as pleasure ripped through her body.
Then, in the tenderest of actions, Max had cupped her cheek and kissed her while slowing his strokes until he came, too. Still inside her, he’d shuffled backward along the floor, finally stepping out of the breeches that had been pooled at his ankles, until he reached the bed and then, laughing, had fallen onto it with her on top of him.
There his golden eyes had darkened as he slowly, carefully cupped her breasts in his hands and licked his lips. Her eyes had widened as she felt him growing hard inside her again.
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