Happy Heart Day, crazies!
In honor of Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d share a hot moment between my two most recent love birds, Georgia Clare and Darius deCompostela of Season Of The Witch (Shades Below, #1.5).
I usually keep the good stuff under wraps, but hey, it’s love day. Happy reading!
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For several long moments, the only sound in the room was her own heartbeat. Then she heard him straighten. “You said you and your mom used to keep track of the moon. What phase is it tonight?”
Georgia answered without hesitation. “Waxing gibbous. More than half-lit, but still less than full. Comes between one and two weeks after the new moon. Starts rising around noon. By sunset, it’s high in the east.”
He chuckled, a warm, rich sound that made something inside her both relax and tighten at the same time. “You’re full of surprises, Ms. Clare.”
Georgia’s heart kicked in her chest. “Georgia.”
The air around them seemed to still. When Darius spoke, he didn’t sound like he was breathing. “What?”
“Call me Georgia.” She swallowed again. “I like the way you say it.”
“Georgia.” Her name rolled off his tongue. His voice was different now, like molten honey. The floorboards creaked. “If you know the moon’s phases that well, you must know their magical applications, too.”
Georgia’s pulse started to thrum. “Of course.”
“So?” His voice sounded closer. “What kind of magic might someone work during a waxing gibbous?”
“Different kinds.” Georgia forced herself to breathe evenly. “People use it to help assess their goals. Refine them.” She moistened her lips. “It’s good for positive magic. You know, to draw things to you.”
He had definitely moved closer. She could feel his heat behind her. Georgia shivered. “Lots of things.”
“No.” She shook her head. Her belly felt strangely light.
He slid one finger through her hair. Georgia jumped a little, but didn’t stop him. Darius hooked the collar of her robe and slowly bared her neck, her collarbone. “What kinds of things?”
Georgia swallowed hard. “Money is always popular.”
Darius’ hmm vibrated over her skin. His finger dusted the sensitive spot where her neck met her shoulder. “What else?”
“Health.” Georgia barely recognized her own voice. “Positive affirmations are particularly effective.”
Darius’ presence warmed her back. She felt him lean down. His breath tickled her neck. “What else?”
He didn’t say what he wanted, but then, he didn’t have to. She wanted the same thing. Georgia turned, and pressed her lips to his.
It was like he’d been waiting for her to make the first move. His thumb pressed her chin. Her lips parted, and his tongue slipped into her mouth. Georgia groaned. The taste of him did something to her brain. Made her forget herself, the world, the bullshit. When they were like this, everything felt simple.
God, she wanted simple.
She reached up and clung to his leather jacket. The difference in their states of dress suddenly struck her. He was still fully clothed. She was basically naked.
Darius seemed to realize it the same instant she did. His deft fingers made quick work of the robe’s belt. He left the robe itself in place, and slid his hands inside. Georgia sucked in a breath. Skin-on-skin. The sensation made her knees go weak. Slick heat pooled between her legs.
Her fingers were shaking when she tugged at his jacket. Miracle of miracles, Darius shrugged it off. It dropped to the floor behind him. Underneath, he wore a sweater over his undershirt. Georgia snorted in spite of herself. “More layers?”
Amusement flared in his eyes, along with something decidedly darker. “Careful, witch.”
She didn’t have a chance to retort before he slipped the robe off her shoulder. He traced a finger down the line of her neck. His eyes heated. “Soft.” He bent over and ran his lips down the same trail. His teeth grazed her skin.
Georgia gasped, and let her head fall back. “Shit. Darius…”
His approving hum vibrated against her throat. “And sensitive.” He nipped her collarbone.
Georgia clasped her hands behind his head, dug her fingers into the smooth skin. Darius’ arms closed around her. His hands slid lower. He filled them with flesh, squeezed. She bowed against him.
The fabric of his sweater was rougher than it looked. It abraded her nipples, a delicious agony. Georgia groaned out loud. “Darius.”
She was fumbling with his jeans before she even realized she’d moved. She found the zipper, and Darius froze. She did too.
He released her and took a step back. Then another. Moonlight washed through the window, bathed him in an ethereal glow. He caught her eyes, trapped them. Then he hooked his thumbs under the hem of his undershirt, and in one motion pulled both it and the sweater over his head.
Georgia’s mouth went dry. Dear god, he was perfect . Chiseled muscles swathed in black velvet. She took a hesitant step towards him. He didn’t move.
She closed the distance, reached out and flattened her palm against his chest. An intricate design was tattooed over his heart. The outer edges curled upwards to his neck. So this was what she always saw peeking above his starched collars. Georgia ran her fingertips along one especially elaborate flourish. “What’s this one?”
“Veve. Of Papa Legba.” His breath was ragged, too.
Georgia let her fingers dance over his skin. The texture was every bit as sumptuous as it looked. She traced the words going down his right arm. “This is the one you showed Father Gregory.”
He nodded. “The Saint Michael Prayer.”
She slid her hand across to his other arm without breaking contact, looked up and met his eyes.
His lips quirked at the unvoiced question. “Psalm 91.”
Georgia touched the ornate calligraphy. “Did they hurt?”
He sucked in a breath when she grazed the fine skin of his inner arm. “Not much.” His teeth flashed white in the darkness. “But I’ll show you what did…”
He turned, and Georgia couldn’t help the awestruck sound that rose up her throat. On his back was an angel. It was kneeling, head down. One hand held a sword, the other, a set of scales. Its wings spanned the broad width of his shoulders. Feathers extended down the backs of his arms.
“Wow.” She stepped in for a better look. “Who is it?”
“St. Michael the Archangel, of course.” Darius spoke over his shoulder. “Champion of the Lord’s army, who weighs the souls of the dead.”
Georgia reached out and touched one of the wings. Darius’ back rippled. She pulled her hand back. “What are all these for?”
He turned back around. His eyes burned into hers. “Protection.”
This time, he was the one who reached for her. Georgia shivered, then leaned up and pressed her lips to the veve. Darius threaded his fingers through her hair. A groan rumbled in his chest. Georgia traced part of the pattern with her tongue. He tasted delicious: salt and soap, and something else that defied description.
Then his thumb was under her chin. He tilted her face upward, and took her lips again.
It would have been so easy to just melt into him, to lose herself in the heat of his mouth. Georgia resisted. She wanted to remember this. All of this. She didn’t want oblivion—at least, not yet.
Darius eased back, brushed the edges of her robe. “Georgia…”
If she didn’t know better, she’d have thought he was shy. Georgia took a deep breath. Her belly fluttered. This was happening. They were doing this. She paused a moment, waited for her heartbeat to steady. Then she shrugged off the robe.
Darius’ lips parted. His eyes roved over her. Heat bloomed everywhere he looked. He cocked his head. His lips twitched. “You’re turning pink.”
Georgia felt herself flush deeper. Darius chuckled. His eyes locked on her breasts, and the chuckle faded. He grazed his fingertips up her ribcage, brushed his thumbs over her nipples. “Beautiful.”
Georgia forgot to breathe.
His hands dropped to her hips, and he walked her backwards. The backs of her knees hit the bed. Her pulse skyrocketed. She sank backwards, and the mattress creaked gently under her weight.
Darius stared down at her. For the first time since she’d known him, his face was an open book. Every line, every plane, was rigid with need. The need to touch. The need to feel. The pain she’d glimpsed earlier was there too, as stark and raw as she remembered.
Georgia’s chest squeezed. She held out a hand. “Come here.”
The look on his face made her quiver. He planted his hands on either side of her head, and lowered himself over her. His lips found hers again, but he didn’t stay long enough for a kiss. He tore away, nipped and sucked his way down her neck. Georgia clasped his face in her hands. Stubble pricked her palms. The interplay of muscle and bone beneath her fingers was endlessly fascinating; yet another salvo in a barrage of sensation.
He leaned briefly into her touch, then shifted his weight onto one hand, with the other neatly retrieved hers and pinned them over her head. Georgia arched reflexively, and his eyes flashed. He bent down and scraped his stubble-roughened cheek against her breast. She hissed.
Abruptly, rough skin changed to liquid heat. Georgia melted a little, looked down just as Darius closed his mouth around her nipple. His tongue lashed the taut peak, and a bolt of need raced straight to her clit. He did it again. She struggled to free herself; at the very least, to free one hand. She only needed one. Darius simply tightened his grip.
He switched his focus to her other breast. A whimper snaked up her throat. She wrapped her legs around his waist and rocked against the stiff fabric of his jeans. His breath hitched, then he shifted his hips and rocked into her right back.
They both groaned at the same time. Georgia again struggled to free her hands, more insistently this time. “Darius.” God, was that her voice? It was deeper than usual, huskier. “I want you naked.”
He growled a little. “Pushy.”
All the same, he pushed off the bed and went to work on his fly. Georgia tucked her arms behind her head and watched. Gods, even his fingers were muscular. He finished with the button and yanked down the zipper. The soft snick sounded deafening in the quiet room.
Georgia wet her lips. The ache between her legs intensified. She reached down and touched herself.
Darius sucked in a ragged breath. “Goddamn. Look at you.”
Heat flooded her cheeks. Georgia started to pull her hand away.
“No.” His eyes were glued to her fingers. “Don’t stop.”
At first it felt awkward, playing with herself while he watched. But then he stripped off his jeans, and it suddenly became a lot easier. Georgia’s eyes locked on the obvious bulge in his boxer briefs. Darius was fishing through his jeans for something. He glanced up, nearly dropped them.
Darius cleared his throat and pulled a wallet from the back pocket. He slipped something from the billfold and tossed it on the bed, then dropped both the jeans and the wallet to the floor. Before Georgia could look to see what he’d grabbed, he shucked the boxer briefs.
Holy fuck, had she thought he was gorgeous before? Darius clothed had nothing on Darius naked. Darius clothed was a thing of beauty. Darius naked was a work of art. Hard lines and carved muscle and mouthwatering flesh.
And of course there was his cock.
The rest of him was perfect; it only made sense that would be, too. He was thick, long, what looked almost painfully erect—Georgia’s face heated. Now she was feeling shy.
Darius seemed to know what she was thinking. Without a word, he lowered himself back to the bed. Surrounded by his massive body, her air saturated with his scent, it would have been easy to feel trapped. But he seemed to know that, too, and kept his weight balanced on one arm.
She didn’t realize she’d stopped moving her hand until he reached down and covered it with his. Georgia’s belly flipped. His voice was gruff in her ear. “Keep going.”
She obeyed, swirled her fingers against her clit and teased the swollen, sensitive flesh further down. Her mouth drifted open on a sigh. Darius kept his hand light over hers, never taking over, simply following her lead. The ache inside her started to tighten.
She looked up at his face. He was watching her, brow creased with concentration. Suddenly, she understood what he was doing. He was learning. Letting her teach him how to please her.
That exquisite ache wrenched even tighter. Heat bloomed in her core. Georgia gasped. “Holy shit, I’m—”
Darius’ lips cut her off. At the same time, he gently pressed down on her fingers.
Ecstasy streaked through her, white hot. It continued without lessening, and she dimly realized he’d taken over touching her. His long, wicked fingers wrung wave after wave of pleasure from her until that was all she knew, all she remembered.
He let out a rough curse, then his fingers disappeared. Georgia groped for him blindly. “Darius. Fuck, don’t stop.”
She heard foil rip, and the smell of latex pricked her nostrils. Georgia looked down in time to see him roll the condom down his solid shaft, then he surged over her. His face was so tight it seemed the slightest movement might shatter it. She reached up and smoothed her hands over his cheeks, traced the sharp edge of his jaw. Her fingers found the studs in his ears.
Darius groaned, reached down and guided himself to her wetness.
The feel of his blunt head nudging inside her nearly sent her over the edge again. A voice in her brain screamed for her to dig her heels into his ass and take the rest of him, right away, all at once. At the last minute, practicality won out. He was large, and it had been a while. Georgia dropped her arms and fisted her hands in the quilt. Every fiber of her being hummed expectantly.
Darius’ hips flexed, and he sank deeper. Georgia sucked in a breath as her body stretched to accommodate him. He kept going. Her next breath strangled in her throat. Heat suffused all her deepest places, flooded every crack and corner. Pain nipped at the outer edges of pleasure.
His pelvis finally bumped her ass. His face was even tighter than before. He found her eyes. “You good?” His voice was hoarse.
Hell yes, she was good. Georgia struggled to breathe. “Just give me a second. I didn’t realize you were so…blessed.”
He let out a short, breathless laugh. She felt it deep in her core.
Experimentally, she moved her hips. Something dark and thrilling took root inside her. Darius exhaled. Some of the tension melted from his face. “God—do that again.”
She did, this time added a little roll. The resulting sensation was downright rapturous. Darius made a choking noise. “Devil woman.”
Georgia’s cheeks burned. The way he said it sounded like a compliment. Or a prayer.
He clasped underneath her thighs and settled back on his heels, giving her no choice but to move with him. His eyes locked on hers. He arched an eyebrow.
The order couldn’t have been more clear. Georgia braced her elbows on the mattress and started to ride. Darius huffed lightly. Pure bliss flooded his face. He released her legs, ran his hands up her belly and molded her breasts.
Slowly, her body grew pliant around him. His cock stroked some secret place no one else had ever quite managed to find. Georgia moved faster, caught up in a delicious frenzy she couldn’t have controlled if she wanted to. Heat and pressure built again, stoked by his clever fingers. He reached between them, lower, and touched her the same way she’d touched herself.
She came apart with a strangled whimper. Darius gave her a brief second to ride it out, then flipped her onto her side. His weight pinned her to the bed, and he drove into her balls-deep. Georgia’s jaw went slack. A scream rose up her throat. Darius clamped a hand over her mouth.
He smelled like sex. Their sex.
This time when she crested, she didn’t come down.
Everything receded except the details that mattered most. The sound of his flesh against hers. The slick feel of his cock inside her. The almost vicious look on his face as he claimed his pleasure, too.
He fumbled for her hands and pinned them over her head again. Georgia moaned as her entire body drew taut. She curled her fingers around his. Darius’ heartbeat thundered in her ear. His movements grew erratic.
Then his powerful body clenched above her. He buried his face in her hair, pressed his lips to the side of her neck. His relief-soaked groan disappeared into her skin. A delicious tremor rolled over him.
Impossibly, another wave rose up inside her to meet it. A single thought hovered in her mind: oblivion had never felt so good.
Then that too melted away, and she couldn’t remember how to think at all.