The Sheikh's Secret Bride(Desert Rogues, Book 3)(23) by Susan Mallery
Before she knew what he was going to do, he bent over and took her in his arms. Despite the fact that they’d only kissed once before, she found herself slipping into his embrace as if she’d done it a thousand times. Her body pressed against his eagerly, her head tilted back and she found herself wanting to surge forward and take the kiss he offered. She knew that if his mouth didn’t touch hers, she would die.
Passion exploded with that first brush of his lips. He started with a gentle exploration, but she wasn’t in the mood to be seduced. Instead she wanted to be taken…and taken now.
She raised one hand to his head and tunneled her fingers through his hair. As she did so, she pressed on his head, urging him closer. She parted her lips and when he entered, she sucked on his tongue, teasing him, arousing them both.
Suddenly his hands were everywhere. On her back, her rear, her hips, then moving up toward her br**sts. Their hips pressed together. She could feel the hardness of his arousal jutting against her belly. Between her legs heat and wetness made her ache with a need she’d nearly forgotten. It seemed a lifetime since she’d wanted a man and she knew she’d never wanted one as much as she wanted this one.
If he’d pulled her up against him, she would have wrapped her legs around his hips and clung to him. If he’d started undressing her, she wouldn’t have thought to protest the act, nor the intimacy that would surely follow.
Even as his tongued plunged into her mouth over and over again, she knew how it would be between them. Her br**sts swelled and her ni**les tightened. She gasped in anticipation as his hands moved higher and when he finally cupped the aching curves, she held in a scream of pure pleasure.
She was hot and ready. She was willing to do whatever he might ask, and damn the consequences. What was going on? This wasn’t her at all. This was—
He brushed his thumbs against her ni**les. The jolt of electric pleasure was so intense her legs nearly gave way. Answering heat flared in her most secret place and she was afraid if he kept touching her like that, she might actually climax right there in his arms.
The thought was so startling that she jerked herself out of his embrace and stepped back.
“Stop,” she commanded, her breath coming in gasps. “I can’t do this with you.”
Malik’s dark gaze met her own. Except for his equally heavy breathing and the ridge pressing against his fly, he looked completely calm.
“Why are you upset?” he asked. “You enjoyed my attentions.”
“Yes, but it’s not right.” She pressed a hand to her flushed face and closed her eyes. When had the world gotten so crazy? “You’re a prince. I’m just some high school math teacher. This doesn’t make sense to me.”
“It makes sense to me.”
She opened her eyes and looked at him. “Is that what this is about? Did you bring me to the palace to sleep with me?” She felt a shudder of desire race through her and knew that she was right. She also knew that if she didn’t stop them both, she was going to give in without a second thought.
“Don’t bother answering,” she said quickly. “I get it. This is some kind of game with you. Playing with the hired help. You’re on the board of directors for the school, so I can’t even protest to my boss about you, or I risk getting fired.” She took another step back. “Is that how you do things here? Trap women into situations that are impossible, then take advantage of them? Can’t you leave me alone?”
Malik stared at her for several seconds, then nodded. “My apologies, Ms. Archer. It seems we have both misunderstood the situation. I won’t disturb you again.”
He turned on his heel and walked away, leaving her alone in the shadowy darkness of the beautiful garden. Liana stared after him and knew that she’d over-reacted, speaking without thinking. Except everything she’d said was true. He was taking advantage of her and the situation. The fact that she’d liked his attentions only made it worse.
If only he were a complete jerk, she thought, making her way toward the palace and the sanctuary of her room. But he wasn’t. He was charming to her, attentive to her daughter and she enjoyed his company…not to mention his kisses. More than enjoyed. And that was the danger. Because if Malik continued to press his suit, she would give in, and then where would she be?
An insistent knocking woke Liana well before seven the next morning. She stumbled out of bed and into her robe, then made her way to the front door of the suite.
After the events of the night before, Liana hadn’t been able to fall asleep. Now she found herself with gritty eyes and a sense of exhaustion as she opened the door and peered blearily at the three servants waiting patiently in the hallway.
“Prince Malik sent us,” Rihana, a young woman in her mid twenties said. She gave a quick bob of a curtsy. “Sorry to wake you so early, ma’am, but he wanted to make sure we had you packed before you left for the school.”
Liana blinked several times, both to clear her vision and to give herself a second to absorb what she’d just heard. “Excuse me?”
“Prince Malik said to tell you that he apologizes for any inconvenience. If you will allow us to enter, we will pack your belongings. They will be taken over to the housing on the property of the American School. You will be in your own apartment by the time you finish with your classes.”
Rihana spoke politely enough but Liana could see that the young woman didn’t understand why anyone would want to leave the palace. At the moment, Liana sort of agreed with her. Why was Malik letting her go?
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