Ren dislodged himself from the door and approached the bed. Lance snarled when he carefully sat on the edge, a good distance from him, and realized the closer he sat the more his discomfort grew. “I think you know the answer.”
Lance only had to look inside him, see the amber eyes of his wolf glaring at his human half to affirm what he suspected. What he hoped desperately he could fight against, but suddenly realized he couldn’t. He didn’t want to.
Lance had probably fucked his way through most of the willing males and females of his pack, but none of them stirred his wolf the way Ren did. Most relationships he had were casual. Merely the slap of flesh-on-flesh to fill an ache, the hole where his mate’s soul should be. But fuck, could it really be Ren Vivaldi?
Like most shifters, he didn’t know the exact science, didn’t know why each of them were hard-wired to know their mate the instant they saw them. Their beasts knew, and his wolf had never steered him in the wrong direction. Until now.
Ren trailed a finger up the length of his left calf, his fingers light as a feather. Lance made a protesting sound in his throat, but Ren traced his way upwards. He drew circles on his knee, palmed the tense muscles of his thigh. Traced each scar he touched, from tip to tip.
How could Lance continue to sprout lies, when his body betrayed him? Lance noticed the way Ren’s gaze lingered on his thickening length, before he looked away and continued his exploration.
Then Ren touched his chained arm and made the assumption Lance would let him run the show. He gasped when Lance gripped his fingers over his wrist. Ren’s pulse leaped under the surface of his skin, and unable to help himself, Lance raised his arm to his lips and licked. Ren’s lion stirred, and a growl, more needy than aggressive, spilled from his lips.
“If we’re both bound to the path to hell, let’s get one thing straight. I lead this fucking dance, you understand? Now unchain me.”
“Wolves and their obsession with dominance,” Ren muttered under his breath. Then he looked at Lance again, studying him. Lance could practically hear the gears in his cunning head turning, debating whether he trusted his words.
“You expect me to believe you’re domesticated, Lance? That you won’t attack me the first moment I set you free?”
“You already stated the obvious. Why the fuck would I attack my mate?” Lance demanded, straining his body forward. He snarled when Ren stopped touching him, and for the first time, he saw the softness there disappeared. Instead, they turned cold and hard, like emeralds. God. Ren looked fucking gorgeous when he was angry.
“Trust has to be earned, not freely given. Didn’t you say so yourself last night? If you weren’t injured, who would have torn out my throat?”
Lance had enough with games. He jerked his hand to the limits of the chain, and managed to grip a handful of Ren’s shirt. Ren gasped when Lance tugged him close, so their noses touched. He flinched, probably expecting violence, but Lance only wanted to make his point.
“You know what I think, kitty? I think you’re all torn up inside, too. Like me, you’re trying to find your way in the dark, worried to death about which side you should take.”
“That’s what you think?” Ren whispered, but Lance knew he hit the mark.
Lance continued, ignoring his question. “You can’t decide between your family and the man destined to share half your soul. Kill me and part of you dies, come with me and it’s the same result, because I know how important family ties are. House Scavos is my life.”
To his surprise, Ren choked out a desperate laugh. Lance released him uncertainly, but Ren didn’t pull away. He leaned his forehead against Lance’s and pressed a hand over his chest. Fuck, did Ren know how distracting his touch was?
“My family considers me a joke and my only ally is my twin sister, but you’re right. They’ll hunt me down either way once they find out I helped you. It won’t be long, too, before your men or mine find our mingled scents in the alley and piece the puzzle together. I’m already a dead man walking.”
Lance awkwardly reached out, banded his arm around Ren’s waist. Fuck House Vivaldi. He didn’t like to see Ren hurting. Even though they were practically strangers to each other, there was something more than a basic primal instinct between them.
Instead, Lance felt an indescribable sort of comfort he’d never felt with another wolf. Ren nuzzled his head against his neck, his hand stroking his thigh, reminding Lance of a needy kitten. It didn’t help Lance could feel the bulge in Ren’s jeans pressing against him.
“If you keep doing that, I’m going to lose my control. Even this thin piece of chain won’t stop me from fucking you senseless.”
Ren halted, frowning. “You have the mistaken assumption I’ll fight you. Are all cats as horny as you?” Ren flushed. “I’m not usually like this. You’re doing this, making me feel all these confusing emotions.”
“You think mating is all sweet romance and chocolates, kitty? It’s not.” Lance sunk his fingers into his hair, annoyed at the limitations of the stupid chain. He tugged, exposing the tempting column of Ren’s throat. Ren didn’t fight him as promised, even when he licked and sucked at one particular spot, or when Lance teasingly nipped at his skin, savoring the taste of him. “It’s all about passion and letting go.”
By the time Ren was naked, Lance had finished scouring through the closet and found a snug leather belt.
“Yes?” Lance asked.
“Yes.” Ren got on the bed. He wondered how they came to this point, with him allowing not just a damn stranger, but also a Scavos werewolf to tie him up. “This mate thing is scary.”
Lance finished looping the belt around his wrists and attaching it to the metal headboard. “How so?”
“I’ve never been more afraid or excited in my entire life. It’s like riding a damn death rollercoaster without safety bars and belts.”
“I never figured you to be poetic.” When Lance simply stood there, watching him, Ren began to feel uncomfortable.
“What are you doing?” Ren squeaked when Lance ran a hand down his chest, ribs, belly, thigh, touching and mimicking him only minutes ago.
“What we’re about to do, it isn’t a rollercoaster. It’s a deep fall.” Lance crawled into the bed and settled between his legs. “You asked me what I’m doing, I’m looking at what’s about to become mine. I’m thinking if you’re worth it.”
Afraid to know Lance’s answer, Ren kept his mouth shut, but Lance went on. “It’s crazy, fucked-up, but yeah, it’s worth taking the risk. I can’t go on living, wondering if I let my fated mate go because I was too chicken-shit to find out.”
“I didn’t know you could be this deep, man.” Ren needed to joke, because he didn’t want Lance to see how his words resonated deeply with him.
“Stop talking.” Lance leaned over him and plundered his lips again, kissing him rough and deep.
He didn’t linger long. Lance left a trail downwards, the rough bristles of his stubble contrasting with his soft lips. It drove Ren crazy, the way Lance chose to go slow instead of fast. Lance took his left nipple into his mouth, sucking hard. Ren cried out when Lance sunk his teeth and left his mark. Ren flushed red when Lance reached for his throbbing cock.
“Liked that didn’t you? You like your lovers taking control.” It was a statement, not a question. Ren could only nod. “Good, because I like being in control.”
Lance bit his way down, his injured arm clearly not a problem. Gaze not leaving Ren’s, Lance experimentally flicked his tongue over the pre-cum gathered at his tip. Ren groaned, twisting in his restraints, thrilled by the knowledge Lance rendered him helpless. Lance had hit the mark. Ren enjoyed being submissive in the bedroom, but he had never found a man he could truly gave his trust and body wholly to.
Lance licked him, base to tip, until Ren could no longer stand it. “Please. If you keep doing that, I’m not going to last.”
“If you come without my permission, I’m going to have to punish you, kitty, but I think you’d enjoy that.”
Ren gasped when Lance took his length between his lips. Most of the dominant males Ren had been with didn’t have much practice giving head, but fuck, Lance knew what he was doing. More importantly, he looked like he was enjoying himself, tormenting Ren by applying suction with every torturous inch he covered.
Ren moaned and whimpered. Once he hit the back of Lance’s throat, he pulled back out. Gave him a few seconds to recover, before diving back in.
“I fucking love how responsive you are, kitty,” Lance said after pulling out. Ren groaned when he curled his fingers over his rock-hard prick and began pumping. “Come for me.”
Hearing those sexy words on Lance’s lips was enough for Ren to let the pressure spill over. He cried out, unloading his cum over Lance’s chest, letting the waves of pleasure wash over him.
“Where do you keep the lube? Do we need protection?”
Floating happily in a sea of bliss, Ren barely heard him. “Drawer.”
Lance got off the bed and opened the drawer.
“What’s taking you?” Ren demanded, hungry for more. Couldn’t Lance see how he was sick of being teased? How badly he needed to feel Lance filling him up?
Lance swore under his breath. “I can’t find the damn condom.”
“Jesus Christ, dude. You’re forgetting we’re both shifters. We can’t catch anything.”
“Are you always this demanding?” Lance returned to the bed, lube in hand. Just to annoy Ren, he took his time drizzling lube into his crack and fingers. Lance massaged the puckered flesh of his asshole, and experimentally pushed one finger up to the knuckle in.
Ren growled. Lance grinned, slid a second in and scissored him for his access. “You’ve done enough foreplay. Now fuck me.”
Ren didn’t know where all this neediness and recklessness came from, but he wanted, no needed Lance to join his body with his. To know what it was like, to have his mate, his missing half complete him, and Ren knew they both wanted this. At that moment he couldn’t care less about the world and the shit storm waiting for them after.
Lance lifted his legs above his shoulders with his good hand and nudged his cockhead in his asshole. Ren groaned at the slight ache, but it wasn’t long before his length slid past the thick ring of muscles and buried in hilt-deep. He let out a breath. “You okay there?”
“Yes.” Ren breathed.