His response was to bring up one of his hands and stroke her br**sts with heavy boldness. No flirtatious passes for Clay. He petted and teased with the confidence of a man who knew what he wanted, what his woman wanted.
"Mine," he said, pressing a kiss to the skin he'd sucked.
And she knew she'd been marked. "Ditto. I don't share." She had always been unreasonably possessive of him. If he had so much as smiled at another girl, she'd sulked for days.
He raised his head. "Neither do I." Their eyes met in a collision of pure fire.
This, she realized, was it. Either she kept protecting herself or she upheld her vow to love him without fear. Put that way, it wasn't a choice at all. So she gathered up her courage and did something agonizingly, blindingly hard for a woman who had learned to distrust early and never quite forgotten the lesson. She ripped open her heart and took the final step across that glass bridge. "It was you. Always. Only ever you." At that instant, she felt something wrench and re-form deep inside of her, almost as if her soul itself changed shape, then the odd feeling passed and she found herself face-to-face with the predator that lived inside Clay.
His intent expression hadn't changed, but his eyes were those of the leopard who was as much a part of him as his human skin. "This, too?" He growled and she felt the roughness of it scrape over her skin in a caress that was at once frightening and mind-blowingly erotic.
Blood flowed to low, heated places. "I'm not afraid of you." Never again would she fear him. "Sometimes, I'm afraid of what I feel for you" - and the cost the emotional connection would demand from him if this damn disease took her - "but I'm not afraid of you hurting me."
He kissed her again, an unflinching male brand that left her gasping. "Took you long enough."
She bit him for that remark, a sharp closing of teeth on one shoulder. It was over before she'd stopped to think about it. When he growled this time, she felt the rumble of it vibrate against her br**sts. Then he bit her. The second his teeth closed over the peak of her breast, she felt her thighs attempt to clench. If he hadn't been between them, she would've been squeezing them tight in an effort to quench the liquid fire threatening to burn her up.
Teasing her by rocking his erection against her, he bit her again. Mercy! When he did it to her other breast, she decided she'd have to provoke him more often. Pushing her hands into his hair, she tugged. "Too much." Too much pleasure, too much exquisite sexual heat.
He said something against her breast and the sensation made her skin feel as if it was stretching ever tauter, as if her br**sts were swelling to please this sexy changeling who seemed determined to enslave her. His hair was heavy silk under her hand, his jaw rough with stubble. She wanted to stroke every inch of him.
When he shifted his lower body, she locked her legs around him, holding his strength to her, luxuriating in the knowledge that while she might not control it, or him - nor would she want to - it was completely at her disposal.
Finally releasing her needy flesh, he kissed his way freckle by freckle down to the curved plane of her abdomen. When he looked up, the erotic beauty of him stole her breath. "You taste good. Pretty freckles." He flicked out his tongue as if tasting one. "Mmm."
"You're making me crazy." He was so honest in his blunt male appreciation of her body. "I thought you said you had no patience."
"I don't. You're just hot for me."
She grinned through the crimson veil of desire. "Yeah?"
"Yeah." Smug, very male, very Clay. But only for her.
Pursing her lips, she blew him a kiss. "Yeah."
Her agreement had him prowling up her body to give her a slow, sensual kiss that made her moan into his mouth. The feel of his chest hair against the damp tips of her br**sts simply added to the overload. She rubbed against him as she'd imagined, inciting him, pleasing them both. His hands slipped under her bottom. "Off."
She was too busy kissing him to listen. He used his teeth on her lower lip. She used hers on his. It was a very sensual fight but he won - because she wanted to be skin to skin, too. All over. Unlocking her legs from his back, she lifted up her bottom and let him undo and peel off her jeans. He threw them aside and ran his finger along the lace edges of her panties.
"Pink?" A row of kisses along the waistband.
She swallowed at the image of those wicked male lips so close to the most private, most delicate part of her body. "I like pink."
Spreading her legs, he licked along the inner-thigh edges. Her hands gripped at the cushion as her body bucked with a twisting pleasure she'd never before felt. Then he licked the other side. And that pleasure roared through her like a fever. But through it all, she was aware of him, holding her, touching her, caressing her.
When the room stopped spinning, she lifted up her head then dropped it back down. "Oh, man." She had known that being with Clay would be good, that it would eclipse the other times into nothingness, but this was beyond good, beyond anything. All she could think was - no wonder women liked sex. But of course, this was nothing so simple as sex. This was..."Oh, man."
Clay chuckled. "Is that all you're going to say?"
"Uh-huh." Her brain was mush.
"In that case, I'll talk." He placed a kiss on her inner thighs, one for each side, then ran his claws very carefully along her hip. "Snap." The right side of her panties fell away. "Snap." So did the left.
That quickly, she was na**d and he was between her thighs, so close his breath whispered over her intimate flesh. Her body was suddenly a tight fist, expectant, waiting. It scared her a little, how deeply he touched her, how easily he'd stripped her of her barriers, but she had made a promise and she would keep it. Talin McKade was no coward - she was strong enough to dance with a leopard. "Clay?" she said when he didn't make a sound.