Hunger Awakened(8)

By: Dee Carney

“What’s your name?” He stepped forward, wanting to breathe in the scent of her blood again. If he couldn’t get perfume, he’d settle for the next best thing to inhale.

She stepped back. “Alice.”

Bast fought the urge to step toward her again. He needed food so badly. “A place to sleep for the night is the least I can provide.”

“Maybe I shouldn’t...”

He could hear the doubt creeping into her voice. Reconsidering what he wanted from her in exchange, perhaps. A single woman alone in the home of a man she didn’t know could lead to very bad things. What she didn’t know about him could get her killed.

His stomach twisted, inciting an eruption of goose bumps across his skin. A wave of nausea collided into him, the aftereffects enough to make his hand shoot out to grasp the slate countertop or otherwise collapse. The incisors he’d managed to hide until now lengthened, pulsing with a hollow ache. Needed to pierce skin.

He doubled over, fighting to hide his need. The last bit of common sense clinging to his consciousness shouted at him to call for help. To get someone from the guard over here fast. But the intoxicating scent of blood—the human Alice—lured the thought away. Bast could only think of feeding his thirst, of satisfying the parasitic sexual lust growing in tune with his need to drink from her.

Alice rushed forward, cradling him against her body. Such a dangerous place for her to be. Their new position put his mouth so close to her neck. To her beating pulse. Bast shifted his attention. Elsewhere. Needed to focus on something else.

He took one jerky step forward, almost off-balancing them both. He must have outweighed her by upwards of sixty or seventy pounds, at least. It was cute she thought she could keep him upright if his own body decided to fail.

“Whoa, there. We need to get you off your feet,” she said. “Which way to your bedroom?”

He swallowed hard. “Why are you helping me?”

She considered it for a minute, her gaze meeting his. Her shoulders lifted in a shrug. “Karma.”

But he had no karma. No goodwill. All he could think of now was feeding and sex. Feeding during sex. Taking from Alice until he’d satisfied his carnal and primal appetites. “You should go.” He fought with every heartbeat to regain control of himself. Some sort of maneuver Alice used forced him to take another step. Then another. Her leverage was reminiscent of defense moves he’d taught his men. She’d done this before.

“I’ll get you in bed, call someone to come over for you and then I’ll go.”

“But...” Even to himself he sounded weak.

“Tell me where your room is. And then who I can call.”

“You should—”

“Go. You said that.” She craned her neck, the subtle gesture enough to make his lips brush against her skin. “Is it down here?”

He shuddered. She smelled so good. Christ, so good. Maybe if he ran his tongue across her neck, the taste would be enough. He’d regain his control. One little taste. “Alice, please go. Before...”

Before he took her? No. He’d never forced himself on anyone before and he wouldn’t do so tonight, no matter how insane the want made him. If he hurt one hair on her head, he’d drive a stake through his own heart afterward. That was a vow.

“You’re on fire,” she muttered. Her hand went to his forehead in the universal gesture mothers everywhere used to test for a fever. “Do you have a thermometer?”

“No.” Black spots hovered in his sightline, and all thoughts of blood and sex crumbled.

“Hold on.” Alice brought her hand around his waist again, her breast pressing into his side. His cock twitched just enough to remind Bast that perhaps not all thoughts of sex had been driven away.

“I won’t hurt you.” Bast tried to lift his head, now seemingly weighing a hundred pounds.

“I know you won’t.” A light flooded the darkened hallway they’d been traveling. “Here we go.”

She’d found one of the guest bathrooms. This bath had been decorated in all white with highlights of gold reflecting from the fixtures, decorative rugs and original paintings hanging in the recesses built for that purpose. The interior designer said the gold would take away the sterility of such a stark room. He’d nodded and signed the checks.

“Sit.” Alice directed him to the toilet and let gravity do its thing. She pushed the coat from his shoulders, not batting an eyelash when she slipped off his shoulder holster housing a Glock. Her fingers worked quickly, loosening buttons on his shirt. Removing his boots and then socks.

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