Caught by Menace(10)

By: Lolita Lopez


“Got you!”

Naya lurched forward and then snapped back as a

massive hand gripped the back of her shirt. She heard

fabric tearing as her momentum was cruely arrested. As

if in slow motion, she fel backward, her shoes sliding on

the dewy grass and her hands snatching at empty air.

“No!”

Jennie grabbed her hand and jerked but she wasn’t

strong enough. “Naya! Naya!”

“Leave her,” Josef shouted as he rushed toward them.

“Leave her,” Josef shouted as he rushed toward them.

He franticaly forced Jennie’s fingers open and hauled her

up into his arms. Eyes glistening and chest heaving, he

sobbed, “I’m sorry, Naya. I’m so sorry.”

Panicked and overcome with dread, Naya screamed

for help. “Jennie! Jennie! ”

But Josef didn’t stop. He ran. He ran with the woman

he loved tucked safely in his arms. Yet again Naya had

been left behind.

Naya shuddered in revulsion as the warrior tried to flip

her over. She baled up her fist and whacked him on the

jaw as he finaly succeeded in forcing her onto her back.

He hissed in pain but didn’t strike back. Instead he

captured her smaler hand in his and restrained her arm

overhead. Shockingly he didn’t try to hurt her.

“Enough,” he whispered harshly. “It’s done. You’re

caught.”

“Please,” she sobbed, her emotions overwhelming her.

“Please let me go. My friends—”

“They left you. They’re long gone.” The briefest flash

of sadness crossed his face. “You’re mine now.”

Naya dragged a slow, shaky breath into her lungs. She

hated herself for crying in front of him. Showing a man—

hated herself for crying in front of him. Showing a man—

especialy one as dangerous as this—weakness was a

terrible mistake. “You’re going to regret Grabbing me.”

“Probably,” he agreed with a sharp laugh. “The same

way you’l regret coming to the aid of your friend. You

could have been halfway to space by now if you’d just

kept running.”

“I wil never regret saving Jennie from you. She loves

Josef. She belongs with Josef.”

“And now you belong to me,” he reminded her.

“Not for long,” she warned.

He laughed again, the sound so cruel. “You aren’t the

first bride to threaten that and you won’t be the last.” His

fingertips trailed her cheek. “It won’t work. It never

does.”

She choked back the sob that threatened to escape

her lips. As if curious, he lowered his face until their

noses nearly touched. Eyes closed, he inhaled deeply,

drawing her scent into his lungs. When his eyes opened

again, he tilted his head. “I’m Menace. What’s your

name?”

“Naya,” she whispered. Menace? What the hel kind

of name was that? She studied his face but it was

of name was that? She studied his face but it was

pointless. Try as she might, she couldn’t read this man.

The unsettling feeling of being completely at his mercy

made her stomach lurch.

“Naya,” he repeated slowly. His fingertips moved

down her jaw and along the side of her neck. “I like that.

It’s different.”

Her breath caught in her throat as his fingers glided

across her colarbone and down the center of her chest.

Her ripped shirt displayed too much flesh. Menace took

advantage and swept his fingertips across her bare bely.

His touch, so intimate and possessive, caused goose

bumps to blossom on her hot skin.

Pinned beneath his powerful frame, Naya could barely

move. Trapped and terrified, she tried to slow her

panicked breaths. She fought the claustrophobia gripping

her chest.

Menace must have read the fear in her face. Caressing

her arm, he urged, “Easy, Naya. Deep breaths. You’re

safe with me.”

Despite his surprisingly kind voice, she chortled

sarcasticaly. “Safe? With you?”

His jaw tightened. “Your people may think we’re al

monsters, but it isn’t true. I’ve never harmed a woman in

monsters, but it isn’t true. I’ve never harmed a woman in

my life. I won’t alow you to be harmed either. Do you

understand? You are mine now. Mine. ”

The possessive word rang in her ears. Her new reality

washed over her like cold water, chiling her right to the

bone. Unlike many women in her world, she’d been able

to live a fairly independent existence. Even as a

homeless, orphaned teenager, she’d found a way to

escape the clutches of men who wanted to make her

their own. To now be owned by someone—by this

stranger—left her feeling il.

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