Utterly melted by her, he didn’t bother to pretend he hadn’t followed her in here with an ulterior motive. “Your sister is much younger than you.”
“Our parents were very happily surprised when I was almost twenty.”
Drew took a moment to think about that. Changelings were less fertile than humans or Psy, so while this kind of thing did happen, it was rare. “It must have been some celebration.”
Having placed the cake on the tray, Tarah motioned for him to lift down the cups and saucers from an upper cupboard. “Oh, it was,” she said as he obeyed. “Everyone thought I’d be jealous, but I thought she was the cutest, most adorable thing I’d ever seen.” A laugh husky with memory. “I used to steal her from my mother all the time and show her off like she was my own.”
He chuckled, thinking back to how Riley had treated him and Brenna when they’d been younger. “Adria can’t be much older than Indigo.”
“I found my mate early”—a dazzling echo of memory—“and we had our beautiful Indigo soon afterward. Adria was only four at the time, so they grew up more as sisters than anything else.”
Encouraged by her openness, he asked a question on a subject many would have said was none of his business. “How long has Adria been with Martin?”
“Ten years, on and off.” Having arranged everything on the tray, Tarah went to pick it up.
He slid his hands past hers. “I’ll get that.”
Looking up, she stopped him with a hand on his upper arm. “You were a wonderful boy, Andrew. I’m so glad to know the man you’ve become.”
Feeling the love in that touch, in those words, he asked the final, most important question. “How long has it been like that between them?”
“Since the start.” Pain pinched her expression. “They love each other, but Martin’s never quite been able to handle Adria’s strength . . . and it breaks her heart each time he makes that clear.”
As Andrew lay na**d in bed and watched Indigo get ready to join him, he thought over the implications of what he’d learned tonight. He didn’t have to be a shrink to see that Indigo’s views on relationships had to have been shaped by the two closest to her.
Her parents’ mating, while unsuitable to her own situation, fit the accepted parameters and was very, very successful. Adria, by contrast, had broken the mold, thrown in her lot with a less dominant man—and the results weren’t exactly inspiring.
“Deep thoughts?” Indigo asked, brushing her hair in front of the vanity across from the bed.
He ran his eyes over the silky little boxers in a color that echoed her eyes that she’d paired with a thin black camisole, her hair a waterfall of shining ebony over her shoulders. “You’re so beautiful, you make my heart stop.”
Her hand froze in its smooth strokes and she stared at him across the length of the room. “Drew . . . you can’t go around saying things like that.”
Putting the brush on the vanity, Indigo walked over to crawl onto the bed, straddling his body. “Because then it makes me adore you even more—and I’m not sure I can handle it.” A teasing statement, but he heard the whisper of truth beneath. His lieutenant was afraid of the growing depth of the bonds between them.
He couldn’t blame her. It had knocked him for six, too, when he’d first realized that she was it for him. Forever. “In that case—your eyes are funny and your teeth are crooked.”
Her entire face sparkled. “Much better.”
Letting the emotion in his heart translate into a slow smile, he stroked his hands up her thighs and under the edge of her camisole. “I have this fantasy.”
“Really?” An arch comment. “Does it involve me naked?”
“How did you know?”
“You’re not that hard to read, mister.” She rubbed her body over the pulsing ridge of his erection. “Or should I say . . . your hardness is easy to read?”
He sucked in a breath, inhaling the lush, earthy warmth of her arousal. “Funny.”
“I thought so.” She stroked her palms down his chest, her claws pricking just enough to incite his wolf to snarling life. “I see someone’s come out to play.” Her own wolf in her eyes, she bent her head and ran her teeth over his nipple, her hair a thousand teasing fingers across his skin.
Fisting one hand in the silken mass, he clenched the other on the sheets. “Is that all you’ve got?”
A gleam of indigo blue between slitted lids, and then she rubbed her barely covered br**sts oh-so-slowly against his chest, snaking her hand down to close over his erection in an openly possessive grip.
“Christ.” It was gritted out between clenched teeth. When he went to grab her shoulders and pull her up, she tightened her hold, letting him feel her claws. Swearing, he dropped his hands. “Do your worst then, Lieutenant.”
Stroking and squeezing the rigid length of his erection with warm, strong hands, she wiggled down over his thighs . . . lower. “Oh, I intend to.” A hot, damp breath on the blunt tip of his cock, his body arching toward the warm wetness of her mouth.
“Patience.” It was a laughing admonition as she rose back up, releasing him to press her palms against his thighs.
It took everything he had to keep himself in position, to let her play as she would. But he was still a predatory changeling male with a woman he considered his. “Top. Off.” It came out husky, rough.
She flicked a finger at the strap of her camisole. “You mean this?”