Page 39

I never doubted him for a moment.

The temperature changes again, and though I can’t see, I hear a door close behind us and I know we’re inside. I’m set on my feet and the coat is stripped away.

Edward unties the scarf and slides it from my eyes.

And my breath leaves me in a rush.

Because it’s a bedroom, but the ceiling is curved, domed—it and the full wall in front of me are made entirely of clear glass.

We’re on a hillside, covered by snow and dense forest. But above us, the sky is jet black . . . except for a river of the most magnificent colors. Swirls of greens and reds and deep purple—all dancing together. What did Edward call it in his letter, so long ago? A living symphony of color.

Aurora borealis.

“We’re in Finland,” Edward says from behind me. “This is called the North House. There are smaller, simpler cabins down the hill for rent, but you don’t have to worry—I’ve bought them all out too. I’ll make a campfire for you, outside if you like. It’s just us here, now. Just you and I.”

And it’s all . . . so much. A flood of feeling washes through me, drowning me, and I put my hand over my mouth but I can’t keep it in. And I burst into great, heaving tears.

Edward takes me in his arms, holding me as I shudder with sobs.

“Don’t cry, Lenny.”

And I try to explain, to make him understand.

“I never thought I would have this.”

He tips my head back, wiping at my tears. “Aurora borealis?”

“You.” I grip his shirt and look up into those beautiful eyes. “I never thought I would have you. I never even let myself hope for you, dream for you, and yet somehow here you are. You have changed my whole life, Edward. You’ve changed me, and I couldn’t do this alone.”

He smiles gently and strokes my face. “Yes, you could.”

“But I wouldn’t be me, not who I am now. I would be some other, emptier version of me.” Another tear falls and another, and my voice breaks. “You are my joy and my heart . . . you are my home . . . and I would be lost without you.”

He holds my face tight in his hands, and his words are low and forceful. “You will never be lost. I will be with you always. The vows were wrong. When death comes, he can have my body . . . but my soul will stay with you, I swear it.”

And my heart is so very full, so full of all that he has given me and all that I feel for him.


It’s a mantra in my mind, a reminder. A restraint.

Because, God damn, how I want her. Not even in my wildest, most selfish adolescent days did I want to take and take a woman like I want to take her.

Wild and hard, lazy and long.

I kiss her soft lips, and touch her face, and move us backwards toward the bed. And Lenny looks up at me, her eyes round and silver as the moon, and she reaches for my shirt, opening the buttons one at a time. She may be the innocent, inexperienced one, but when she pushes my shirt off and skims her hands across the burning skin of my chest . . . and follows those hands with her velvet kisses . . . I’m the one trembling.

I may not be a king, but here, now—she makes me feel like one.

More than a king—her hero, her husband, her mesmerized slave, her ravenous lover—it’s all the same now. All wrapped up together.

Lenora’s mouth trails down my stomach and her torturous wet tongue traces the ridges of my abdomen. My hands clench tight at my sides—yearning to grab and tug and pinch and cup.

But I let her have her way—let her explore and taste until her sweet heart is content.

She bites her lip and pauses at my navel, suddenly unsure.

But then my little Queen rises to the occasion . . . and sinks down on her lovely knees just for me.

And, fuck, my cock aches at the sight.

My trousers are opened and the belt slid out with the hiss of leather. Then quickly, like she just can’t wait for it, Lenny pulls my trousers down my hips, freeing my hot, rock-hard flesh. I step out of the pool of fabric at my ankles and I feel her needy, keening breaths against my thighs.

She grips my dick in her delicate hands and slides her palm firmly up the shaft, just like I taught her. Lenora wets her lips, opens her mouth and takes me in the fantastically wet, scorching cavern of her mouth, where she worships me with tight suction.

My head rolls back on my neck and my eyes close and I can’t fucking watch her anymore, or I’ll come on her tongue.

She moans around me—I hear it, I feel it.

And my control stretches to a tenuous, razor-thin thread.

I grip her arms and yank her up—harder than I should. I kiss her until she can’t breathe, can’t think—sucking on those velvet lips, grazing them with my teeth, dominating her with the thrust of my tongue.

And my heart pounds in my ears, slow, slow, slow . . .

I undo the pearl buttons of Lenora’s suit jacket and slip it off. Her arms are lithe and long. Delicate. I raise them straight up over her head as I breathe deeply. I look into her simmering eyes and let her see the bare, raw desire in mine. How much I adore her—how blessed I am that she’s mine.

I skim my palms down her bare arms. Then down her sides, stroking the pale flesh of her breasts with my thumbs along the way.

The skirt is gone next. I get on my knees and slide it down her legs, leaving Lenora only in a thin ivory satin slip. I kiss her stomach on my way up, the lilac-scented valley between her silken breasts. My large hands slide up her thighs, pushing the slip over her head—so she’s bare to my eyes . . . to my heart.

Then, one by one, I pull the pins from her hair—removing her cap and unraveling her bun until her hair falls loose down around her in a wild, wavy dark curtain. It accentuates her features—her skin is paler, her cheekbones higher, her gray eyes brighter.

And it’s all for me. I’m the only man who will ever see her like this.

I give her a smile with all the tenderness I have, as I bring her in against me, our warm skin sliding. I lift her up so her breasts are right there for my lips’ taking, wrapping my mouth around her nipple—flicking it hard and fast with my tongue and sucking and sucking on the hard points until her high-pitched voice calls my name for mercy.

Her hands comb through my hair, caressing my jaw, bringing my face up to hers. “Make love to me, Edward.” She looks up at the ceiling, then back into my eyes. “Make love to me under this magical sky.”

I spin around and lay Lenora down on the bed. Her pink mouth is parted and panting and her tousled hair framing her. And she opens for me like a flower—arms stretched, knees spread—uninhibited and unashamed and perfect and mine.

I climb over her, toss her legs over my shoulders, and then I feast. Licking and tasting between her legs, making her pussy wet and clenching, making her moan and gasp my name—my bride, my wife, my beautiful fucking girl.

“Edward . . . Edward . . .” she chants, pulling at the strands of my hair hard.

I kiss down her inner thigh, her calf, rising up on my knees, between her legs, and I drag the broad, bell-shaped head of my cock through her slick, slippery heat.

Up and down, past her opening again and again, pausing but not dipping in.

Lenny’s hips rise up—craving, begging.

“Is this what you want?” I whisper.

She writhes beneath me, eyes drunk with pleasure and lust and need.

“Yes . . .”

I open her up wider, drape her legs across my thighs. My palm slides up the slick center of her stomach, kneading her breasts, stroking her nipples, then back down. I rub her tight little clit with the pads of my fingers on one hand, and slip two fingers into her pussy with the other.