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Jordana stared at him, at the sculpture of his body and the masterwork of his dermaglyphs, helpless to keep her hungered little moan from escaping her throat.


In his warrior’s garb and weapons, Nathan was forbidding and lethal. Awe-inspiring by the darkest of definitions.


Naked and fully aroused, he was all those things and more.


Immense.


Terrifying.


Heart-stoppingly, dangerously beautiful.


And he was looking at her as if nothing else existed but the two of them in this moment. As if the sight of her nakedness affected him every bit as intensely.


He stepped closer to the bed now, skimming his warm palms along the insides of her thighs as he took up residence between them. She exhaled a tremulous sigh at his touch, at the heated, hard presence of his body positioned so intimately against hers.


“Please,” she whispered, the word shaky, more breath than sound.


Nathan grunted, low and contemplative, his smoldering eyes locked on her face. “Please, what, Jordana? Tell me.” Demand in his deep, coaxing voice, nothing close to request.


As he spoke, his hands caressed her, moving upward until he reached her damp curls and hypersensitive flesh. He teased her with long strokes and deft fingers, stoking her so easily back to a state of writhing need.


Jordana closed her eyes as pleasure swamped her, pulling her under on another dizzying tide. She let it take her, gave herself up to the bliss of his hands on her, his fingers inside her.


And when she didn’t think she could hold on for another second, Nathan’s touch slid away, leaving her gasping his name, her body vibrating and fevered with an ache she could hardly bear.


“Oh, God,” she murmured, lifting heavy lids to find Nathan poised above her on the bed now, braced on his fists with elbows locked straight on either side of her.


His erection pulsed from its upright position against her cleft, the feel of him like warm steel sheathed in velvet. As if he knew how badly her body craved him, he flexed his hips, sliding his hard length through her wetness, cleaving her folds with his heavy shaft.


Jordana moaned at the torment, growing mad with want. Desire kindled and burned, stronger than ever, and with it seemed to form another awakening within her, this one more elusive but no less powerful.


Something more than physical need, deeper than simple craving.


Something queer and unfamiliar to her, an unfolding awareness, reaching out from the furthest corners of her consciousness for what seemed the first time.


And all of that heat, all of that power, all of that strange, rousing energy arced toward Nathan as surely as a divining rod trained on a font of clear, quenching water.


She felt it in her blood and bones, in her senses … in her very soul.


“Nathan, please …” She lifted her shoulders up off the bed, her palms hot and itching to feel him. To touch his skin and trace the tantalizing lines of his extraordinary glyphs.


But not until after she felt him inside her, filling her with more than just his wicked fingers.


“Make this ache stop,” she demanded, her voice husky and rough with desire. She reached for him, prepared to take hold and drag him down atop her if he didn’t ease her yearning soon.


But Nathan moved faster than she could even dream to. For the second time tonight, he dodged her touch and captured her hands in his strong grasp.


This time, however, he didn’t seem content to merely hold her away from him.


Straddling her now, he rose up onto his knees above her, his fingers wrapped around her wrists like iron clamps. His eyes flared with amber sparks, something hotter than desire or even anger. Something darker, menacing in its intensity.


His face was so serious, his pupils nearly swallowed up by the light radiating from his Breed irises. His sensual mouth was unsmiling, merciless, his fangs gleaming and deadly sharp behind his parted lips.


And yet despite his ferocity and unforgiving hold, he carefully brought her hands toward him, pressing a tender kiss into the center of one tingling, hot palm, then the other.


His thumb stroked the underside of her left wrist where her Breedmate mark resided, a growl curling up from the back of his throat.


Jordana didn’t notice he held the tie from her robe until he began to loop the lavender silk sash around both of her wrists, binding her hands together.


He said nothing.


No excuse or explanation.


No request for permission.


She’d come to accept his dominating nature in most everything he did, but now it took on new meaning. Nathan wanted total control when it came to sex.


He needed it, assumed it.


Demanded it.


Jordana could have broken out of her bonds if she tried. But she didn’t wish to try. There was something wildly erotic about the satiny abrasion of the tie against her skin.


Even more arousing than that was the idea of surrendering herself so completely to Nathan.


A shiver raced through her, part in trepidation, part in breathless anticipation. She was a strong woman with a strong head. She’d always chafed against even the lightest reins someone attempted to place on her. But with Nathan it was different. She was different. After tonight, she knew she would never be the same again.


If she was being honest with herself, she hadn’t been the same since the moment she took that first impulsive kiss from him. Nor did she want to go back to the life she had before.


And for now, she was right where she wanted to be—safe with the most dangerous man she would ever know.


Jordana let him ease her back down onto the mattress. Allowed him to push her arms up, so that her bound hands rested above her head as he moved off her.


She submitted to him willingly, unabashedly, when he parted her trembling thighs and gazed upon her, naked, open to him, for the longest moment of her life.


His eyes roamed unhurried over every bare inch of her, a slow lick of flame that left her quivering and overheated, restless for him to quench the burn. He tangled his hand in her loose hair, lifting the pale strands, watching it sift through his fingers and settle back down around her shoulders and naked breasts.


Eyes blazing, fangs glinting as sharp and white as diamonds, he lowered his face to the front of her throat, sending her pulse into a wild hammer.


His breath skated over her tender skin, then his lips closed over the vein that throbbed like a drumbeat pounding in her temples and in her ears.


His tongue soothed, but she could feel the hunger radiating off his immense body. His kiss was gentle, sensual, seducing her body into a boneless state of passion, of fearless, wanton trust.


“Yes,” she gasped, giving him the submission his skilled mouth and hands demanded.


At her carotid now, a faint graze of his fangs—whether in his own temptation or to demonstrate to her how totally she was at his mercy right now, Jordana couldn’t be sure.


Nor did she care.


He could have sunk his sharp canines into her in that moment, and she would have been helpless to stop him.


God save her, but there was a reckless part of her that would have welcomed Nathan’s bite … and the eternal blood bond that would come with it.


Jordana moaned his name, caught between pleasure and frustration over the fact that he’d denied her the ability to touch him and kiss him too. She wanted to run her hands over him as he moved, feel the power of his muscles as his strong body covered her. She wanted to feel his hard shaft filling her, claiming her.


She wanted Nathan to do whatever he pleased with her, a wish that should have terrified her but only made her need wrench tighter.


And that peculiar, unfurling coil of energy deep within her seemed to agree.


It rushed up from the center of her like a live current, jagged and white and consuming.


“Now,” she said, astonished to hear the growled command push past her lips. “Nathan … oh, God … I can’t bear this. Please, I beg you … do it now.”


His head came up sharply from her throat, his face hard and impassive. Maddeningly, unbreakably in control.


But his eyes … they gave him away.


She wasn’t alone in the violence of her desire, not even close.


Nathan snarled a curse, amber light flaring hotly in his transformed irises. He moved between her legs, his erection standing thick and upright, terrifyingly large.


Doubt flickered through her mind, a sudden fear making her brace for certain pain. Her breath stopped, heart rate speeding now, as he shifted his hips and the blunt head of his cock slid through her wet cleft, coming to rest at the virgin opening of her body.


Nathan stilled above her. “Open your eyes, Jordana. Let me see you.”


She obeyed at once, not even aware she had closed them. Nathan stared at her, eyes locked on hers as another subtle pivot of his hips seated him more fully at her entrance.


“You’re so slick and hot,” he murmured. He pushed slightly, testing her. Studying her. Patiently allowing her to prepare for his invasion. “Your body is ready for me. I need to know you are too.”


“Yes,” she replied, her stifled breath gusting out of her on a tremulous sigh as he moved against her, teasing her with the promise of what was still to come.


She bit her lip but kept her gaze trained on his as he’d demanded. Another nudge of his hips coaxed her untried channel to accept more of him. A flood of liquid heat pooled in her core, all her fears drowning quickly in that rising tide.


Nathan’s mouth curved in a knowing, wicked smile. His hips drew back slightly, then pushed forward in one sure thrust.


Jordana’s body bowed as he entered her, filled her. There was pain, but it was as fleeting as it was sharp. There and gone in a few instants, obliterated by the incredible feel of their bodies pressed tight together, naked and joined as one.


“Ah, fuck.” Nathan’s voice was rough, guttural. And the raw sound of it only made Jordana’s arousal spike higher. He moved inside her, his pelvis rocking smoothly, gently, even as his big body shook with hard tremors. He rasped a low curse beside her ear. “I didn’t want you to feel this good. Dammit, you shouldn’t feel so right.”


He thrust deeper as he said it, impaling her as if in punishment, yet Jordana could only revel in the fullness and the tempo that sent pleasure into all of her senses.


It felt more than good. It felt more than right, Nathan deep inside her, their bodies answering each other’s rhythms as if they were meant to be together.


As if they had always belonged like this.


Jordana spiraled toward orgasm, climbing higher and higher as Nathan drove into her welcoming sheath. She cried out as the first wave crashed over her. Gripped by the force of her oncoming release, she arced into each rock of his hips, tugging against the silken bonds that still held her hands above her head.


Nathan showed her no mercy, increasing his speed and depth until she was lost and adrift, every particle of her being turned electric with pure, powerful sensation. She screamed as an explosive climax overtook her, splintering her from the inside.


And then Nathan followed her, pushing deep, grinding his hips against hers at an urgent, violent pace. Lips peeled back off his enormous canines, he bucked into her, riding her hard.


Jordana loved the wildness of his passion. Nathan, the cold, cool warrior—the ruthlessly in-control Gen One male—scorching her with desire-drunk eyes and an expression caught somewhere between fury and rapture. That she had done this to him, turned him so savage with lust, was astonishing. Empowering.


The headiest aphrodisiac she could imagine.


She was already coming again when a fierce shudder gripped him. Nathan roared her name, his voice unearthly, untamed. One hand clamped on her hip, he buried himself to the hilt and yet another coarse shout ripped from between his teeth and fangs as a jet of fluid heat shot inside her.


Jordana lay there, floating on a strange new plane, her senses both satiated and hyperaware. She heard every breath, felt every heartbeat—her own and Nathan’s both.


Her body felt loose and relaxed, newborn in many ways, as it recovered from the dull pain of her lost virginity and the even greater pleasure of what she and Nathan had just shared.


He was still inside her, still firm, stretching the walls of her sheath as his erection pulsed with renewed life. The feel of him growing bigger, hard all over again, made her own body react like tinder near an open flame.


She exhaled a deep sigh, moving beneath him in effort to create more delicious friction.


Nathan’s muscles twitched, and inside her, he thickened in swift response. Eyes narrowed on her, he lifted his head and uttered a low groan.


“Too soon for you,” he cautioned. “Your body needs time to mend, Jordana.”


No, it didn’t. What it needed was more of him.


But Nathan withdrew and rolled off to the side of her. He reached up and freed her hands from the soft tether above her head. He paused for a moment, the length of silk crushed in his tightly clenched fist.


When his gaze met hers again, she saw regret there. An apology he didn’t speak but communicated with his light caress on the bare undersides of her arms, then in the tender stroke of his fingers along her flushed cheek and parted lips.


The torment in his expression pulled at her. He struggled with very private demons; she might have guessed that, in light of his background. Now she saw his internal struggle playing across his handsome, tortured face. A struggle he seemed accustomed to battling alone.


Her heart clenched at that thought. There was so much about this solitary, remote man that she didn’t know. Things she wanted to understand.


She didn’t know if he would share any more of himself than what he gave her tonight. And despite the real fear of his rejection, Jordana couldn’t let her questions go unasked.


“Nathan,” she said softly. “Will you tell me … why?”


Black brows furrowed—an instantaneous reaction, and one that he swiftly schooled into the cool aloofness she’d come to know and expect in him.

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