Riley opened his eyes, not seeing anything in the darkness. He didn’t need light to know that Samuel’s huge, warm body was lying next to him. With a finger Riley probed his tongue, not finding any wounds or even a hint of tenderness. Frowning, Riley’s mind started racing.
“Ask, baby.” Samuel’s deep voice penetrated the dark.
“What happened during that crazy kiss, it changed me didn’t it?”
“The kiss was the first step of the bonding ritual. Mixing our blood and taking it into our bodies connected us.” Samuel’s fingers, which were still entwined with his, tightened briefly.
“Are we done with the rituals? I have to say that last one was a kicker. And by the way, I take it that the exchange of blood is the reason my tongue and lip are healed?” Riley wasn’t stupid by any means. He may only be a mill worker, but for him it paid the bills. He had good insurance, and after putting in his eight hours, he could do what he wanted. That included reading, rock climbing at the gym, and running miles with Katherine. But the fact remained that he had given it all up to help Katherine disappear, except now the plan had taken a sharp left turn.
“There are a few more rituals, baby.” Samuel’s deep voice sounded like it was raking over stones, creating shivers along Riley’s spine.
“What’s the next one?” Riley rubbed the hair on the nape of his neck and tried to ignore the way his cock was responding to Samuel calling him “baby.” Then Riley remembered what Samuel’s cock and balls had looked like in the yellow glow of the streetlight and became distracted by how they would feel, in his mouth.
“Sex,” Samuel answered.
Riley’s mind slammed back into the present. Oh happy day, things might be looking up for him. “Sex is good,” he said. Riley would never deny that he loved sex in any way, shape, or form.
Samuel’s chuckle vibrated through Riley’s body making his asshole twitch. He was coming to realize that this shifter mating stuff took attraction and connection to a whole new level. He would actually be scared if he didn’t desperately want to be skin to skin with the big man.
“It might get a little intense,” Samuel explained. “I don’t want you to be afraid. I’ll take care of you every step of the way.”
“Wait a minute. Why would I be afraid of sex?” Riley started to pull away but their linked hands stopped him. He was going to free his hand but Samuel just held on tighter.
Riley looked toward Samuel even if he couldn’t see him in the darkness. “What is going to happen during the ritual?”
Riley heard the rustle of the bed linens and then Samuel’s lips covered his in a brief kiss. The kiss calmed him, but made the hum thrumming through his blood pump even harder. His nipples prickled as they tightened in reaction to his lion’s touch.
“I now see why my friend Stephan was reluctant to explain the shifter world to his mate. It would be much easier just to show you,” Samuel complained.
“How did that go for him?” Riley challenged.
Samuel chuckled, “Not too well.”
“Just give me the basics. Do we have regular sex or is it done in some weird way? By the way, I don’t do animals, no matter how gorgeous your lion form is.” Riley wasn’t an unreasonable man and kinky was fun, but even he had limits.
Samuel’s thumb traveled slowly over the back of Riley’s hand caressing it gently. Just that small touch made his need grow stronger. “While we are having sex, we will have to bite each other. It’s part of the requirements for lions. I know some of the other cats have to follow different biting rules.”
Riley’s heart sped up. He had always liked a little teeth in his sex play. “Okay,” he agreed.
“Once you have swallowed some of the blood, you will need to lick the wound shut,” Samuel continued.
“Wait a minute. You’re saying we are biting deep enough to draw blood? Isn’t that a vampire thing?” Riley was joking with his vampire reference until Samuel’s next words shocked him.
“I’m almost certain that vampire’s need to bite their mates. I’m not really sure as they are one of the oldest of the paranormal world and tend to be the most secretive. The rumor is that they are so good at masking what they are that even other shifters can’t tell they’re not just humans.”
Riley had long discussions with Katherine about animal shifters. But now he realized that they had never talked about other paranormal beings. Then the “just humans” comment registered. “So I’m just a human to you, lion?” He hoped Samuel liked hot water, because the cat was very close to making Riley lose his temper, and would soon be immersed deep in it.
“You will never be just a human to me,” Samuel responded without hesitation.
“Nice save, but this isn’t going to work if you think I’m inferior to you.” Riley knew from his talks with Katherine that of all the cat shifters, the lions were the most condescending. They were one of the strongest, only smaller to the tiger, and their animal instincts were close to the surface. Riley might have his hands full with Samuel, but the lion-man better respect him as a person or the poor kitty would be shown real quick the error of his ways.
“Shifters are stronger, faster, and heal quicker than humans. But humans are exotic beings that won’t let anything stop them if they feel strong enough about something. I cannot help but respect that,” Samuel answered.
Riley didn’t like that Samuel’s voice was so cold. He could feel his mate pulling away. Taking Samuel off guard, Riley rolled them over until he was on top, sitting on Samuel’s hard stomach. This time he was the one holding Samuel’s wrists above his head. Leaning down he made sure they had eye-to-eye contact and Samuel could see how serious he was.
“I’m sorry, Samuel Craydon. I apologize for hurting your feelings. Please forgive me.” There was nothing else he could say. He had said what was in his heart and he hoped Samuel could see and feel it.
By now his mostly dry hair had fallen forward, creating a wall around them, hiding them from everything but each other. Their battered souls reached out, touching and mingling, soothing and loving each other.
Samuel lifted his lips up and Riley met him halfway. The kiss was a reuniting and healing of their hearts. After a while Riley lifted his head and smiled down at his lubirea mai.
“I love you,” he said.
“I love you, too,” Samuel whispered.
Samuel’s eyes widened. Then he blinked a couple of times, looked around quickly and then back at Riley. “Baby, I can see color.”
Riley frowned. “What do you mean?”
Samuel’s hazel eyes took in Riley’s hair, hiseyes, until they lowered over his chest and down to his hard dick poking from its dark brown nest of curls. “When shifter mates fall in love, they are gifted with color, beloved.” Awe filled Samuel’s voice as he looked around the room.
“So you were color-blind and now that you love me, you see colors?” Riley asked, astounded.
Samuel’s bright eyes returned to Riley. “Yeah, it’s amazing.”
Through the bond their excitement and happiness turned into lust.
Leaning down, Riley kissed Samuel. This time it wasn’t sweet. Lips mashed together, tongues thrust against each other, and groans were pulled from each of their chests.
Riley felt something prod his ass cheek and reached back. Once he had a firm hold on Samuel’s monster cock, he slid back and angled his hips until it was pressed against his opening.
Breaking the kiss, Riley looked at Samuel and slowly pushed back until the head was inside his body. Taking a second to adjust, Riley continued to bring Samuel into his body until he felt the soft hair on Samuel’s balls touch the sensitive skin on his ass.
Riley put his hands on Samuel’s wide chest and enjoyed running his fingers through the soft curls until Samuel’s nipples caught his eye and he started rubbing and pinching them. Samuel’s hands were busy carding his fingers through Riley’s long hair. He seemed fascinated by the way it moved. Then a finger ran down his cheek and started rubbing through the light shadow of the beard on his chin.
“What are you doing?” Riley asked.
“I’m looking at the different colors of my beautiful lubirea mai,” Simon answered.
Now Samuel pinched Riley’s nipple, watching it turn a deep red and then back to light brown when he let go.
Samuel put his thumb on Riley’s lower lip and pulled it down, and then released it. Putting his thumb back on his lip, Samuel rubbed it until it became tender, all the while watching it closely.
Riley’s ass muscles squeezed down on the cock still inside him. Leaning forward, Riley started to move his hips, riding the long length of Samuel’s cock. Samuel thrust his hips upward, sending that monster way up inside, rubbing on Riley’s sweet spot causing him to whimper.
Their loving now was smooth and easy, with each man looking deep into the other’s eyes. Katherine had told him once that a person’s eyes were the windows to one’s soul, but she was wrong. In Samuel’s beautiful eyes he not only saw Samuel’s soul, but also his heart. And Riley could also see his own heart and soul reflected back at him.
Their joining continued until their bodies quivered against each other, now covered in sweat, with both men gasping to take sweet oxygen into their lungs.
“Samuel…” Riley’s leg muscles were starting to protest. Samuel’s large hands enclosed his hips, helping him to keep riding his cock. But Riley needed something more.
“Please, Samuel…” he begged.
The air around them grew thick as Riley’s begging escalated Samuel’s excitement. The hands on his hips tightened and with a flip, Riley found himself on his back looking up into the face of his lover. Now the cock in his ass sped up, nailing Riley’s prostate with every thrust.
Riley reached up and racked his blunt nails across Samuel’s chest. Samuel’s whole body jerked and his cock thickened. His mate reached down and stroked Riley’s prick making him scream when his orgasm took over. Samuel continued to pound his dick into Riley’s hole until he filled his insides with hot cum.
It took a while for Riley to come back to the present and found Samuel’s body was as still as a stone. Looking up, Riley wondered what was wrong, until the evil glint in Samuel’s eye had him stiffening.
“What are you up to, lion?” he asked.
“I thought we should try something and see what happens,” Samuel answered.
“Do I get a vote in this?” Riley asked. He trusted Samuel with is life and loved the big man with his whole heart. But when the lion came close to the surface like it was right now, Riley knew he was in for a rough ride.
“Nope,” Samuel said.