Aeron took a moment to absorb what she’d said. “We’ll capture her today, then, while she’s sleeping.”

“Why the urgency? And what do you plan to do with her?”

“Hunters are in town. We’ve found their hideout, and we now know they’re being aided by Rhea, the god queen. We want to ask Scarlet a few questions, prevent her from helping the Hunters.”

“I could have told you they were in town, but you refused to listen to me.”

“I know, I know, and I’m sorry about that, too. So what do you know about Rhea?”

Yet another apology from him. The man deserved a reward. “I know that she titled herself Mother Earth, and that she’s aiding the Hunters,” Olivia said, even though all she could think about was giving Aeron that reward. “I know that she was weakened inside Tartarus, all the Titans were, and that’s how the Greeks were able to get the demon of Strife to possess her.”

“I can’t believe I had the information at my fingertips all along,” he muttered. “If her demon is taken from her, will she die? Like us?”


“So why is she helping the Hunters?”

“For the same reason Galen is leading them. They plan to kill you, and save themselves, then use your demons for their own gains. In Rhea’s case, taking over the heavens and destroying Cronus once and for all.”

If he had more questions, and she was sure that he did, he didn’t allow himself to ask. Did he plan to go to his other source, whatever—or whoever—it was? And he did have a source. That much was clear. He hadn’t been this knowledgeable before. If he did, he wouldn’t need Olivia, and she hated the thought of that.

“Thank you for the information,” he said gruffly.

“You’re welcome.” Push him. Be confident. Aggressive. Show him that he needs you for more than answers. “I accept payment in the form of kisses. And anyway, I believe I owe you two. You apologized for your insensitivity, after all.”

Aeron cleared his throat. “Yes, well, I never said I’d pay you. Or accept payment. We, uh, need to leave.”

Disappointing man. “Just let me—” Olivia glanced at the towel. If she donned it, she would be giving up, and she wasn’t ready to give up.

She bit her lip as Gideon’s words drifted through her head. Well, her translation of his words. Men liked naked women. Men had trouble resisting naked women. So no towel, she mused, nearly humming with anticipation.


“Never mind,” she said throatily. “I’m ready.”

Arching her back to lift her chest—he did like her breasts—she gripped the doorknob and flung the door open fully. Confident. Aeron was leaning against the wall and had his back to her. His arms were still crossed over his chest. Unfortunately, he was still dressed.

Aggressive. They’d just have to change that.

Naked and wet, she stepped in front of him, her heart drumming harder and faster than when she’d considered touching herself. When he spotted her, his jaw dropped. His nostrils flared. His pupils practically exploded, the violet irises completely obscured.

Olivia almost moaned. Well, well. Gideon had been right. Aeron did like looking at a naked woman.

Push harder. The ache…she needed him to assuage the ache… “What do you think of my outfit?” she asked, twirling.

Strangling sounds left his mouth.

She might never wear clothes again. “I’m human now and humans always demand payment for their services.” Could he hear the excitement and nervousness in her voice? “So, if you want any more information from me—and believe me, I have a lot to offer—you’ll have to earn it.”

“How?” The word was a snarl—but that snarl wasn’t laced with anger. “With those kisses you mentioned?”

“That was the fee five minutes ago, and you refused to pay it. Therefore, my price has now gone up. If you want to know anything else, you’ll have to warm me with your body. I’m cold.” I’m so hot, I’m on fire.

He gulped. Straightened. His gaze traveled the length of her, lingering on her breasts, between her thighs. His breathing became choppy, shallow. “Holy hell. Dying. I’m dying.”

So am I. “Aeron.” Give me. Take me.

“There…there isn’t time.”

“Make time,” she said, and closed the remaining distance between them. Must…touch…

He could have scooted her out of the way, and she wouldn’t have been able to stop him, but he didn’t. His big hands settled on her waist, his fingers digging deep. Finally!

“I shouldn’t,” he said. “Told myself I wouldn’t, even though he won’t—”

“He?” More. “Who won’t what?”

At first, he gave no response, made no reply. “My…demon,” he finally said in a hard tone, his fingers spreading to cover more ground. From lower back to buttocks, he touched her. Burned her. “He won’t…hurt you. For once, I don’t have to worry.”

“He,” not “it”? What had changed between the two beings?

Who cared? Progress! “So why shouldn’t you be with me?” If he’d hoped to dissuade her from this path, he never should have introduced her to passion. His mistake, and one she would take total advantage of. “There aren’t any obstacles.”

“Obstacles…” He floundered on the word, his gaze glued to her lips. “We are…”

She flattened her palms on his chest, unwilling to listen to him rattle off an entire list of problems. As he’d probably planned. His heart was drumming harder and faster than hers. A good sign. Still. Wanting it even harder, even faster, she arched her lower body into his and moaned. Oh, yes.

“You like getting answers, don’t you, Aeron? That’s important to you? For the good of you and your loved ones. Just pay me.”

He licked his lips, leaving a glistening sheen of moisture. One taste, that’s all she needed…. “Who would have thought an angel would be such a manipulator?” he asked huskily.

“I’m fallen,” she reminded him. Yet again. “Now, enough talking. More paying.”


He leaned down just as she rose on her tiptoes. Their lips smashed together, and at first, he didn’t respond. She had to force her tongue past his clenched teeth, but the moment it touched his, he groaned and took over.

Oh, did he take over. His arms banded around her waist and hefted her up. She had to wind her legs around him and lock her ankles, otherwise she would have simply dangled there. The new position was delicious, exactly what she’d needed, placing her aching core at the tip of his hard, thick erection. An erection peeking past the waist of his pants.

Stupid pants.

His hair, cut so close to his scalp, tickled her palms as she rubbed them up and down. One of his hands cupped the base of her neck and angled her head for deeper contact. Contact she felt through every inch of skin, every cell rushing through her veins, every bone screaming for more.

“You have on too many clothes,” she told him between deep breaths.

“Not enough,” he shot back. His lips settled on her collarbone and sucked. Lower still. He licked a nipple, finally making good on his promise to kiss her there, and she moaned. His other hand moved to her neglected breast and massaged. “I don’t think a shield of armor would protect me from your appeal.”

Such a sweet admission.

“We should slow down.”

What? No! “Speed up.” She twisted his ear, earning a growl.

Again he sucked on her other nipple, and the sting made her gasp—then she moaned as he licked where he’d nibbled. She arched into him, rubbing just the way she liked.

“I’m going to get you all wet.”

“And that’s a bad thing?” he asked.

Bad thing, bad thing. The words were an echo in her brain, and she remembered how she’d tried to lick his penis the last time they’d kissed like this, but he hadn’t let her. Had thought her too pure.

She dropped her legs, feet hitting soft carpet.

He frowned. “What are you—”

She sank to her knees, tugging at his pants until his shaft broke free. Thick, long, so magnificently hard.

“Olivia…” A moan, as if she tortured him. “You shouldn’t.”

Her mouth watered as she pressed her cheek into the satin-smooth flesh. Hot, imprinting. His fingers tangled in her hair. She pulled back only slightly, opened wide, then sucked him in. His girth stretched her jaw, an uncomfortable fit, but the salty-sweet taste of him thrilled her.

“I was wrong. You should,” he croaked out. “You really should.”

Up and down she rode him with her mouth, hands playing with his heavy sac. She enjoyed him, enjoyed doing this, destroying his reluctance, spurring him into enthusiastic abandon. But he didn’t let her take him all the way. All too soon, he gripped her shoulders and yanked her up.

“No more.” Sweat glistened on his face as he swung her around and crowded her against the wall. Without a word, he next dropped to his knees. His strong hands parted her legs, and then he was there, licking at her, sucking on her, devouring her.

She needed an anchor, but couldn’t find one as her hands clawed up and down the wall behind her. As her head thrashed from side to side. As her hair tickled her back. Everything was a stimulant. And she was close…so close…just needed…

He stormed to his feet, panting, lapping at the moisture she’d left on his face, eyes at half-mast, liquid. “Want to take you…can’t take you…taste so good…need more…can’t have more…”

More. Yes. “Aeron.”

He shook his head, all hint of his resistance fading—only to be replaced by determination. He reached between their bodies and stroked his erection. The other hand gripped her waist. “Can’t…can’t…have to remember…”