A gust of air ruffled his hair and his shirt. A strange, sensual aroma slammed into him. For a split second, he stared back at a startled man whose eyes widened and the blues glowed. He grappled for the closed door with his free hand, trying to steady himself, nearly tripping over the lip on the floor.
And as quickly as the perspective transfer occurred, he was back in his own body, this time staring at a heavily cloaked figure whose haunting silver eyes shimmered from the deep shadow of his hood.
Vuk swallowed. The telltale sign of mates crossing paths left him weakened at the knees in a time he couldn’t afford the distraction. Unfortunately, his body thought otherwise, straight to the damn hard-on that filled his jeans against his better judgment.
“I’m here to see Raul Carney on behalf of Mallouch Cavanough. I’m to see him in person to deliver the package he is awaiting.”
Vuk tore his gaze away from the mesmerizing silver glow and lowered his attention to a small box barely visible from beneath the cloak. The tips of the vampire’s pale fingers, nails painted to match the blackness of his clothing, were all that Vuk could see of this smaller creature. His voice, however, was an entity of its own. Sultry, fluid, like a dark symphony reaching out to his soul and coaxing him to fall into the shadows of unknown promises.
Vuk cleared his throat, giving his head a slight shake. It did little to dispense the fog that crept along the outskirts of his thoughts.
He held out his hand for the box. “No one is to see him. I’ll bring him the box.”
The object of secrecy disappeared, as did the vampire’s pale fingertips. “My apologies, but I was given strict orders from Mallouch that no one is to touch this parcel except for Raul Carney. That includes the leader of the guards.”
Vuk narrowed his eyes and lowered his head slightly, trying to get a glimpse of the face that spoke his knowledge of who Vuk was.
“What’s your name?”
“My name, sir, is not important. The contents of this parcel are. Your time is running short. Raul is sick, is he not?”
Tension rippled between them, an unseen force that kept Vuk on edge. It didn’t help that his wolf had begun a relentless pacing at recognizing his mate. By all he could sense, the vampire hadn’t a clue that Vuk was his mate.
“It must be administered immediately,” the stranger murmured. “We must not delay.”
“What are you asking to administer?” Vuk countered. He spoke just as quietly, aware that others had begun to notice their unusual exchange so soon after a night full of bloodshed. He couldn’t keep the gruff growl of his wolf from the edges of his tone.
“A potential cure.”
Vuk straightened up, squaring his shoulders to the vampire, showing him his full height and the strength he held. The vampire, to his surprise, seemed to shift beneath the cloak, mimicking his stance.
“You are wasting precious time. Take me to Raul.”
Vuk recognized the push of force behind those words. It was a hum, a vibration that spread throughout his mind, begging him to obey a command he did not want to obey. He growled, this time showing fangs to the vampire. Mate or not, no one fucked with his mind to persuade him to do something he did not want to do and think they could get away with it.
“Don’t use your powers on me, mailman. They don’t work.” Vuk stepped to the side. Despite his reluctance to let anyone near Raul while his alpha lay in a state of vulnerability, Raul was aware of the package coming to him and had not seemed nervous. Vuk might not trust a vamp whose face he couldn’t see but whose presence lit him on fire, but he trusted Raul with his life. “Follow me.”
The vampire stayed close to Vuk’s heels as they made their way to Raul’s private chambers. The smaller creature’s scent—an intoxicating concoction of fresh pine and a warm, underlying sensual spice he couldn’t quite pin down—infiltrated his head. It wasn’t helping the problem that rose in his jeans, leaving him tense and edgy by the time they arrived at Raul’s door.
Vuk rapped on the door and was momentarily surprised when Cael, the Creek’s on-site physician and sorcerer, greeted them with a solemn grin.
“Thank you for coming so late and on such short notice,” Cael said, stepping aside so Vuk could lead the cloaked vamp into the room. Cael closed and locked the door behind them. “Mallouch advised me about the antidote.”
Vuk paused, casting Cael a shaded glance. Cael ignored his silent inquiry, holding a hand out to the vampire.
The creature lifted a delicate hand from beneath the heavy material and pushed his hood back with a movement so fluid and graceful, Vuk wasn’t certain he saw the man move at all.
His curiosity vanished the moment he got his first look at his mate. The drum of his heart sent waves of blood throughout his body, weakening him, deafening him, tunneling his vision until all he saw, all he cared to see, was the vampire. As his hand was delicate, so was his face, a carefully carved and molded mask of ivory beauty enhanced by the slant of dark brows and a swell of red lips. When the vampire stole a split-second glance in his direction, those silver eyes glowed, lined with black liner and thick lashes. His hair, as black as midnight and cut to frame his gorgeous face, held streaks of dark red that caressed his cheek.
Vuk jerked out of his trance and twisted to find Raul leaning up against the archway into his bedroom. He cradled his left arm, sweat beading along his brow, his eyes flashing with the pain he kept at bay. Those same eyes pinned him with a mixture of concern and intrigue until Vuk nodded, then panned toward the vampire.
Cael spread his arm toward Raul. The vampire bowed his head with an Old-World elegance that snatched Vuk’s breath and demanded his attention.
Vuk moved back enough to work the leather down Ashly’s legs and toss them aside.
The sight of his mate laid out before him, pale beauty against the backdrop of dark sheets, would be one to haunt him until he died. The spirits had been nice to him, and in turn, he would treasure the gift of his mate.
He hadn’t realized his hands trembled until he dragged the backs of his nails against Ashly’s thighs. The vampire hissed and arched off the bed, those damning fangs dripping with anesthetic as his cock dripped with pleasure. Ah yes, Ashly’s cock jutted up along his belly, thickness surrounded by snowy skin tinged with rose blush, glistening with pre-cum.
Vuk’s mouth watered. He growled, leaning down and pressing an airy kiss to the hollow of Ashly’s exposed throat.
Ashly’s fingers sank into his hair, fisting against his scalp. Vuk began a slow journey downward, savoring each lick and kiss, each slight tremor and breathless sigh. He teased Ashly’s nipples, sucking the firm flesh to peaks while his little vampire moaned and wiggled beneath him.
“Craving this,” Ashly whispered. Vuk closed his eyes, inhaling the potent scent of his mate’s arousal as he kissed his way closer to his target. “Your mouth all over me.”
Spirits, he craved Ashly against his tongue just as much.
Vuk nibbled along the ridge of Ashly’s hipbone toward his groin. Ashly’s legs slid along his sides, his fingers fisting harder.
Ashly’s plea rode a nerve-tingling hiss. He paused, trying to steady his breaths against the fierce cock-throb in his jeans, his panting wolf, and the promise of heaven inches from his lips.
Gentle. Gentle. Gentle.
For a split moment, he slipped into Ashly’s mind and was hit by swell after swell of emotion, need, and hunger. His vampire’s body burned as much as he did. He silently begged Vuk to take him, claim him, finally throw away their rocky beginning and carve something in stone.
Despite his mate’s slight ache from his wound, he trusted Vuk to take care of him in these precious moments. Trusted.
“Please, don’t stop now.”
Ashly’s quiet entreaty snapped him back into his own body. The vampire trembled against the growing tension in his muscles.
“I can’t,” Vuk murmured, drawing his lips along the underside of Ashly’s cock. It jerked as his own body shuddered with the first taste of his mate’s earthy sweet essence. “Even if I wanted to, I can’t.”
Vuk forced his teeth to retract, taking the moment to turn his gaze up to Ashly. Silver blazed through the wild strands of hair. His nostrils flared, his upper lip quivering, revealing the tips of his fangs. Vuk swallowed back the urge to unleash the insane hunger that beat at his body.
Vuk held Ashly’s gaze as he licked the mushroomed tip of his cock before drawing him into his mouth.
Gods, he would never forget the sight.
Ashly’s eyes flashed brighter than ever. A wicked hiss fled his throat as he curled up from the pillows. He was gods awful beautiful in that display of unabashed pleasure, pleasure Vuk delivered. His feet slammed down on the mattress and his hips rolled, forcing more of his cock into Vuk’s mouth.
Vuk obliged, angling his head and taking Ashly deep. He suckled the sweetness from his slit, his thirst seemingly unquenchable with each small sip he stole. Sweet spirits, his mate dropped back, releasing his grip of Vuk’s hair and writhing beneath Vuk.
“My wolf.” Ashly pumped his hips, matching the slow, tenuous strokes of Vuk’s mouth as he crested his dick before swallowing him back. “Oh, sweet gods, my wolf.”
Vuk pulled back, teasing Ashly’s glans with his tongue and sucking a few drops of juice from his slit before releasing his cock and pressing up to his hands and knees. Ashly pressed his lips together and pushed upright.
In a blink, Vuk found himself sitting back on his heels, Ashly straddling his lap. He wrapped his arms around his vampire’s smaller frame, his cool skin flush against his exposed chest.
“Ashly,” Vuk whispered, closing his eyes beneath the tender touch of Ashly’s fingertips over his lips.
Ashly lowered his mouth to a mere breath from Vuk’s. The skin of Vuk’s lips tingled, burning for Ashly’s kiss. His mate traced the edge of his bottom lip with the tip of his extended nail.
“Kiss you.” Ashly’s words were barely audible, a sensual whisper entwined in the deafening echo of Vuk’s heartbeat. Ashly flicked his tongue out, tracing along Vuk’s upper lip. “To taste my pleasure on your lips.” He slipped his tongue along Vuk’s and shivered. “On your tongue.”
Vuk was helpless not to fall beneath Ashly’s seductive spell. He allowed his mate to tease his mouth with small, airy brushes of lips and tongue until he finally slanted his mouth and claimed Vuk in a deep, slow, mind whirling kiss.
Cool fingers caressed his neck, slipping beneath the collar of the open shirt and easing it down Vuk’s arms. As Vuk cast the shirt away, Ashly leaned back, ending their kiss. Vuk’s attention fell to the razor-sharp point of his mate’s thumbnail pressed to the pale flesh above his left pec.
He drew that nail deep, opening his skin. “Let me heal you, my beast.”