With every fiber of her being, she wanted to run rather than walk to him. And she would have, if the angel hadn’t said, “I cannot let her do that, demon,” and appeared at her side in the next blink, taking hold of her wrist and locking down.


OH, HELL, NO, PARIS THOUGHT. Two pansy wingers—one of them practicing, one of them fallen—were not gonna get the drop on him. He hadn’t killed the fallen, not yet, he’d just hurt the guy a little. Or a lot. Whatever. Now he wanted the bastard to suffer for a long damn time.

His need to protect Sienna burned hot. The fact that the fallen had interrupted their sexual play, the fact that someone other than himself had seen her delicate features overcome with desire, were reasons to kill. Savagely.

Zacharel he actually kind of liked, but that didn’t mean he’d tolerate interference in this matter. Only thing going for him right now was the fact that Sex was either asleep or hiding, and thankfully had no opinion.

“Let her go,” he snarled. He was losing blood fast, his chest like a waterspout that had sprung a leak. Hurt like a son of a bitch, and he knew he’d go down sooner or later. He was determined to make it later, when Sienna was safe.

The angel gave a single shake of his head. “Your temper is too fierce.”

So the hell what? “I’ve got myself under control.”

“Do you really?”

No. “I said I did, didn’t I? So let her go before I make you.”

“By taking my hand? My balls, as you told the fallen?” A pregnant pause, anger fighting to be freed from a man who clearly denied his emotions—but couldn’t fully suppress them. One day he would erupt, no question. “What will you do to yourself when you accidentally hurt your female?”

One stomping step, two. “Back off. Now.” The darkness inside him was so deeply rooted, he knew the stuff had moved in and set up shop and he’d never get rid of it, even when he and Sienna parted. Especially when they parted. Already he was going to sink into despair when he lost her, and if he allowed himself to relax with her, to like her that much more, he would only drag her down with him. That’s why he’d fought his emotions so hard after having sex with her.

Now he was glad for that. If he had to murder the angel, he would, and the darkness would be shooting out happies over the deed rather than remorse.

“Your darkness,” Zacharel said.

“You reading my mind?” The invasion would cost him.

“No,” the angel replied, saving his life. “Your eyes. The darkness is there. Do you know what it is, warrior? Do you know what you play with? No? Well, allow me to explain. As a human body can grow a child, a demonic one can grow evil. That is what you have done. You have allowed your demon to birth another demon, for lack of a better word. This one is all yours, your baby, and like the other possessing you, he will never leave you.”

Should have surprised him, didn’t. Shouldn’t have angered him further, did. Sienna had heard those damning words. “Unless you want a personal introduction, you better step away from my woman.”

“Paris,” she said, sadness dripping from her tone.

Sadness rather than anger, leaving him confused. Whatever. If she tried to tell him that she wasn’t his woman, that this second demon—or whatever it was—was a deal breaker, he’d lose it. When he had to let her go, fine, whatever, he’d reevaluate and dial back the possessiveness. But here? Now? There’d be no dialing back. He’d just pounded inside her, had just come inside her, branded her, and he still had her decadent taste in his mouth. She’d cried his name, had wanted more, and would have given him more.

“I still have your present,” she reminded him. “Should I… Do you want me to…use it? I thought he was your friend, but…”

He blinked. She would stab the angel? For him? The thought probably shouldn’t have cranked up his desire for her, but it did. And that she would do this after hearing Zacharel’s condemnation of him was heartwarming.

“Not yet.” Behind him, he heard the punk lumber to his feet. His hand tightened on his weapon.

“No,” Zacharel said, stopping him. At last he released Sienna. “The red is receding from your eyes. That is good. You will not hurt the girl now. Therefore I will take the fallen elsewhere and return later. As for you, you will head for the doorway leading out of this realm.” He vanished a moment later, the fallen going with him though Zacharel had never touched him.

As if his presence had been the only thing keeping Paris upright, he collapsed, toppling to his knees. Sienna rushed to his side and eased him the rest of the way down. Thick black spiderwebs wove through his line of vision. Any moment, and he’d sink into unconsciousness.

“I’ve got you,” she said. “I’ll take care of you. I won’t let anything happen to you.”

He didn’t want to say what he now needed to say, didn’t want to spoil what had happened before with what had to happen now. He’d been here, in this very situation, a thousand times before. Injured and fading—with only one way to heal.

“I have to… You have to… Sex, I need sex.”

His demon was all over that, torpedoing out of hiding to shoot blood into his cock. Happened so fast, Paris suspected the demon would battle whiplash for days. This was uncharted territory, though. Until Sienna, he’d never been with the same woman twice. Now that he had, he knew it would keep him level, strong, but would being with her more than once actually mend his body?

“Sex? But you’re in no condition for that. You should rest.”

“No resting. I hate that it has to be this way, but I can’t change it.” When he was injured like this, he needed full-on, hard-core sex with as many different partners as possible. But even if a hundred beauties had surrounded him, he’d still only have wanted the one looming over him, silent, her hands gentle as they explored his wounds. A woman he shouldn’t trust, especially while he was like this, but one he couldn’t, wouldn’t, turn away from.

No matter what happened next.

“Please, Sienna. Ride me.”

Only the slightest pause. “You don’t have to beg me for anything, Paris,” she said, using his own words to comfort him. “I told you I’d take care of you, and I will.”


IF I EVER GET PARIS completely naked, Sienna thought wistfully as she unbuttoned and unzipped the black, flowing material of his pants, I’ll probably spontaneously combust.

Not wanting to jar him, she stretched the fabric apart rather than tugging it down his legs, allowing the massive length of his shaft to spring free, just as he’d done earlier. No man should be so beautiful all over, a study of hard strength and dark sexuality no matter where you looked.

He threw an arm over his face, hiding his features from view. “I hate this.”

She’d been reaching for him, but now reared back. “I’m sorry. I can find you someone else if you’d rather—”

“No,” he rushed out. He must have heard the horror and distress in her voice. “I don’t hate being with you, and I don’t want anyone else.”

Good, because she wasn’t sure she could have followed through. Becoming his pimp would be a special kind of hell.

“What I hate is that we’re chasing something meaningful and organic with something clinical and mechanical. Something forced.”

Her first thought: he’d enjoyed the sex, too, and considered it meaningful. Joy careened through her, bright starbursts that warmed each of her cells. Her second thought: he was ashamed right now. The joy withered, cooled. They had so much working against them already, she couldn’t allow him to add such an awful emotion to the mix.

“You’re not forcing me to do this, Paris. Before we were interrupted, I was wet. I’m still wet.” And she didn’t mean from the water. “Why does this time have to be any less meaningful than the other when we were headed in this direction, anyway?”

He’d groaned at wet. Now his arm fell away, and he peered up at her with those amazing eyes of searing azure. “You’re so lovely.”

When he looked at her like that, all heavy-lidded and dreamy, she felt lovely. “Let me show you the rest of me.” She pushed to her feet and disrobed, his gaze tracking her every movement.

Throughout the centuries, he had seen countless others naked. She knew that; she had seen them. He had been with tall women, short women, skinny, heavy, black, white and everything in between.

Sienna was nothing special, and yet, when he said, “Beyond gorgeous,” with a fine sheen of sweat dotting his brow, she believed him this time. He was right. Her demon would sense a lie. The joy returned.

“I think the same about you,” she admitted. Naked, emboldened by his praise, she straddled his hips and eased down. But she didn’t impale herself on his thick length. Not yet. He needed the sex, and time was imperative, but he needed stroking more. Needed assurance that she was here, in this moment with him, all the way.

His arousal jutted out between her legs, her warmth all over it. She traced her fingers over the tip, and he sucked in a breath.

“Climb up here and straddle my face,” he croaked. His palms found her breasts and kneaded, rolling her beaded nipples through his fingers. “I want to taste you again.”

The desire to do just that nearly slayed her. Blood rushed through her veins at an alarming rate and heated dangerously, chasing away any lingering chill. “I’ll hurt you. My weight… Your chest is injured.”

“How about this? I need to taste you again, and I don’t care if my chest hurts.”

She licked her lips. “How about this? I’ll taste you.”

He stilled, even seemed to stop breathing.

“Unless you don’t want me to,” she hurried to assure him.

“It’s not that.” The words sawed from him, hoarse and throaty, more grit than substance. “I haven’t let anyone do that to me in more than a thousand years.” He sucked in a breath. “No, that’s not actually true. I let a slave perform the act on me on the journey here, and I hated every moment of it.”