The sides of the pack expanded a second time before sandwich after sandwich fel on top of the bars, each encased in a clear plastic wrapper. And when those stopped raining down, apples and oranges began to drop and rol . Haidee’s mouth watered.

“I want wet wipes and a change of clothes. I want weapons and toothpaste and a toothbrush—” they’d left those behind

“—and a first aid kit for Amun’s wounds.” As she spoke, each of the requested items joined the pile.

Giddy, she sorted through the food, picking out what she wanted to eat. Once she had a ham sandwich and apple in hand, she practical y inhaled them. Then another sandwich, then an orange. She drained two bottles of water. Every bite, every drop was heaven. And when she final y finished, too ful to shovel in another crumb, she cleaned herself as best she could with the wipes, brushed her teeth—God, that felt good—and final y al owed herself to glance over at Amun. Breath caught in her throat.

The firelight caressed him lovingly, bestowing a golden tint on his dark skin. A tint she hadn’t noticed before. He was watching her, a strange, bemused expression on his beautiful face, and a half-eaten apple in his hand. Obviously he’d cleaned up, too, since his face was no longer streaked with dirt.

“Let me bandage your wounds,” she said quietly.

The bemused expression vanished, his pupils expanding, his nostrils flaring as if he suddenly scented prey. Her eyes widened. What had she said?

Your concern for me is nice, but to bandage me, you’l have to put your hands on me. I want your hands on me for a different reason.


Come here. There was such force, such command in his tone, she didn’t even think about refusing.

She crawled to him, quickly closing the distance between them. He set the apple aside, but he didn’t touch her. He simply peered at her. Waiting. Expectant. She rose to her haunches, breathing him in. The sandalwood was now layered with the peat smoke.

She was supposed to bandage him first, right? Then touch him for a different reason. “I—I forgot the supplies.” They were around here somewhere, and—

Forget the supplies again. You’re going to kiss me now, Haidee.

His heat was like a thick vine around her. She found herself almost in a trance as she straightened and said, “Yes.”

Final y. Another kiss. Exactly what she’d craved. Forever, it seemed.

A kiss between you and me and no other.

“Yes.” A plea from deep inside.

Do it, then. His voice snapped like a whip, daring her even as it warned her.

It was then she realized that, on some level, he was stil fighting his desire, exactly as he had in the shower, just before he’d walked away from her, and that even when their tongues were rol ing together, he stil meant to resist her, to maintain distance.

She wasn’t going to let him.

If she gave her al to their kiss, he had to give his al , too.

That was only fair.

“I—I won’t kiss you,” she said, shivering as his eyes narrowed to dangerous slits. “I mean, I won’t do it because I’m grateful to you, and I won’t do it to distract or soften you.

I’l do it just because I want you. So get ready. Because I expect the same from you. If you can’t do the same, walk away now.”


I’LL DO IT JUST BECAUSE I want you. As Haidee’s soft, shattering words echoed in Amun’s mind, he stopped waiting for her to take the lead, stopped waiting for her to physical y prove her desire for him, thereby atoning for her rejection of him in favor of Micah in the shower.

I can give you what you want, he told her, voice raw.

Her lips parted on a relieved gasp.

He didn’t want her relieved; he wanted her mindless. With a moan, he crushed his mouth to hers, one hand at her nape, one on her ass, and jerked her into the uncompromising line of his body. Immediately she opened for him, welcoming the hard thrust of his tongue into those wet, satiny depths. He tasted mint and apple, both frosted like ice cream. Both fueling his need.

During their talk, he’d meant to ask her about the unnatural chil of her skin, but as she’d spoken of death and pain, he had focused only on that. On finding a way to save her.

There had to be a way. And there had to be a reason she kept coming back.

How many times had she died? he’d wondered. In how many ways? Not knowing tortured him, but he had a feeling that knowing would utterly destroy him. No matter what she’d done in the past, she hadn’t deserved to suffer as she clearly had. Especial y more than once. The fear in her eyes as she’d spoken of being reborn into the same body…he never wanted to see it again.

And could he real y blame her for her hatred of him and his friends? A demon-possessed immortal had slain her family, her husband. Amun would have reacted the same way, lashing out at everyone responsible, even the slightest bit. At the time of Baden’s death, Haidee had known only that the Lords were violent, crazed, capable of any dark deed. Of course she’d sought to destroy them.

He’d done the same to her. To her col eagues.

Now, as Amun looked back without any taint of guilt, fury or despair, he knew three things to be true.

Haidee had lost her family. He had lost a friend. He wasn’t going to hate her for that loss anymore. Since she’d fought her way into his bedroom, so sweetly caring for his wounds, the sentiment hadn’t sat right with him, anyway. He’d had to force the issue.

Now, he wanted al of her. He wouldn’t, couldn’t, settle for less, his need to touch no longer about tiring of her or freeing himself of this obsession, but about gratifying her.

“Amun,” she rasped, and the sound of his name on those pleasure-giving lips nearly undid him.

“You…you stopped.

Why did you stop?”

Amun. She’d cal ed him Amun. He lifted his head and peered down at her. Her mouth was red, swol en and glistening with moisture. Her tongue flicked out to capture the lingering flavor of him. His shaft throbbed in response, desperate to feel the clench of her inner wal s.

Her hands rested on his shoulders, her nails already cutting. He was panting, sweating despite the cool breeze wafting from her.

“What’s wrong?”

You always cal ed me “baby” when you thought I was…

Micah. Just then, he had trouble even thinking the loathsome name. The scope of his understanding extended to Haidee and only Haidee. Besides being a Hunter, the bastard had held her, tasted her, and while Amun knew he was being irrational, he despised every man who’d ever had this pleasure. His pleasure. Yet you cal me by my name, he finished darkly.

Her expression softened, il uminating the delicacy of her features. “The only person I’ve ever cal ed baby is you.”

Wel , okay, then. That was acceptable. He reclaimed her mouth in a rush. Their tongues rol ed together, taking, giving, their teeth scraping. Hands began roaming, every new touch increasing their fervency. He cupped her breasts, her nipples beading under his palm, and he moaned.

“I wish they were bigger,” she said between licks.

Her breasts? Why?

“Men like bigger.”

Someone had made her self-conscious, he realized, and he wanted to kil that someone. This man likes these. He squeezed. They were smal , as she’d implied, but firm and wonderful y tipped. And they truly were the sweetest little morsels, as he had implied. They’re perfect.

In fact…he whipped her shirt over her head and ripped the front clasp of her bra. The backpack would provide her with another one. As the material sagged apart, he caught a glimpse of nipples the prettiest shade of pink he’d ever seen.

You’re so beautiful. He sounded drugged, didn’t care.

“Th-thank you.”

He bent his head and sucked one of the little pearls harder than he’d intended. A gasp escaped her, but she didn’t push him away. No, she tangled her fingers in his hair and held him against her.

He switched his attention from one to the other, laving them equal y until goose bumps broke out over her skin. Until her bel y quivered in anticipation every time he moved. Until breathy groans were fal ing from her lips, interwoven with his name, with pleas for mercy—for more.

Amun hadn’t had a lover in a very long time, but he hadn’t forgotten the basics, and he’d never been so driven by instinct. Touch, taste, possess, own. He could have been a virgin, and he would have found a way to please this woman, because making her come wasn’t simply a desire.

Making her come was a necessity.

Her pleasure was his pleasure, and that’s just the way it was.

Touch…taste…yes, taste. He straightened, meshing their lips. He had to taste her again.

He wanted to go slowly, to savor every inch of her. To learn what she liked, what she didn’t. But just as before, with a single kiss and a few caresses, the passion between them went nuclear. Those roaming hands clutched, nails scraped. He rubbed his erection between her legs, and she arched into every slide.

After everything she’d told him, he felt as if he could lose her at any moment. As if someone would take her from him, and she would wake up in that cave in Greece, unable to remember him or this kiss.

They were both shirtless, and when her breasts brushed his chest, he hissed out a breath. The kiss never slowed, their tongues continual y rol ing, seeking, demanding.

Possess…own… He cupped her ass and slammed her against him, the rubbing becoming a frantic seeking. A fever.

No, not a fever. His blood was on fire, true, racing through his veins with a swiftness that would have kil ed a lesser man, but the woman he held was becoming colder with every second that passed. Her skin was like ice, her mouth the storm, and as he sucked on her tongue, that icy storm fil ed him.

The demons had been hiding in the back of his mind, afraid to make themselves known. Now they shrieked, her touch affecting them as if they’d just been hooked to an electric generator. Each one—and gods, there were hundreds—

scrambled through his head, doing their best to avoid the renewing of Haidee’s pul …the unavoidable cold.