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If you must approach a surface dweller, please use extreme caution; they are aggressive creatures, and they often smell.
--from "Survival Above Ground" in The Book of Palia
I patted the book in my jacket pocket and smiled. Paul did smell ... incredible. And he didn't appear to have an aggressive bone in his tall, well-made body. I couldn't help but wonder what else the text flush against my pounding heart had gotten wrong while I drove through streets choked with cars and pedestrians in this thriving surface city called New York.
Technically it was against the rules to get involved with Top Landers. There have always been breaches in the Earth's surface that lead from our world to theirs up above, but we're not supposed to make contact. Not if we can help it. But the damn breaches were my reason for being here in the first place. I'd been sent to do a job and do it cleanly with no Top Landers the wiser to our existence in the sweltering depths of the Palian Middle Lands below.
I knew I shouldn't have stopped, but when I saw him get out and push I knew he needed some help. Not with the car, and not because assholes were giving him shit as he tried to get over and out of their way. As I inched closer to his vehicle, I had a feeling he could use a friend, and when I leaned down to shake his hand, his skin on mine told me he needed a little taking care of. Maybe even a lot, because he didn't want to let go.
I liked his voice, too: soft, almost apologetic as he spoke. His sky-colored gaze stayed locked on mine, on me, while the line of his jaw alternated between clenched and slack, like he knew he shouldn't be staring but couldn't help himself.And if he thought I hadn't noticed the hard cock in his pants, well, he was sorely mistaken.
Shaum's words of warning came back to me. Keep focused, Darrien. No trifling with Top Landers. But my leader's gaze had stayed on his lover, Zhang Wei, as he spoke. And trust me, they're damn hard to resist.
I remembered nodding, completely confident that I could keep my dick in the annoying garments these surface dwellers wore as I hunted down renegade dragons hiding out in the Top Lander's abandoned subway tunnels. The Jorgenis, or "small greens" as we called them, were looking for their own space outside the Middle Lands. Zhang Wei, who hailed from some place named the Middle Kingdom--obviously a misnomer--chuckled as I pledged to do the job quickly and return home as soon as possible.
"I have a feeling he's going to find one," Zhang Wei had said to Shaum. "I'll bet you twenty zakras that Darrien falls for one, turns him, and brings the guy back here to Palia."
Twenty blowjobs, eh? Both Shaum and Zhang Wei hated to suck cock, so I knew he was serious. Which scared me. And fascinated me too. Shaum had wrinkled his nose at the wager, then spat onto his cavern floor as I thought about how I had yet to meet my mate down here in the steamy underrealms.
The story of how Shaum and Zhang Wei met was the stuff of legends. An earthquake had split the boundaries between our kingdom and that of the Top Landers, and a very young Shaum had defied the elders to explore the world now open to him. When the sunlight hit his scales, they turned crimson, and a group of men repairing a temple of some sort stopped their work. Some ran away, others knelt in awe, but one brave young man stepped closer. Shaum easily took Zhang Wei as his lover, not the most difficult task when all of China practically worshipped dragons to begin with...
I had seen my fair share of dragon worship here in New York as well. We were printed on shirts, embroidered on jeans, and inked onto arms, thighs, you name it. After watching Paul walk away, I pulled back into traffic and wondered if Paul had any tattoos. Then I wondered what his lean but muscular body would look like without clothes. His skin was pale, like the cream poured into the wretched Earth drink called coffee. His longish hair was as dark as the beans that made the bitter liquid. I pictured him naked and sated in the silken nest of my bed. My cock roared to life in my trousers.
The hotel was close, but not close enough. And it was sterile. Crisp white sheets neatly made. Generic art on the walls pretending to be elegant--nothing like the murals painted on the cavern homesteads of Palia. My fingers went for my cock. I hadn't had a lover since Torin, and although he was here hunting the Jorgenis with me, he was too high maintenance to deal with right now. I was still recuperating from the way he liked to fight-fuck. Scratches, bruises ... I was getting too old for that shit--I needed a man who knew how to stay still and take it. To let me love him and not struggle for the fun of it.
Paul knew how to take it. Everything about him told me this.
When I got to my room, I was ready to mess up those tidy sheets, give them my sweat and seed before finally falling asleep. Last night had been rough, trudging through garbage to track down the little green fuckers and not finding them till dawn. They'd been drunk and rowdy, which I thought would make for an easy termination.
It had been anything but easy.
I tended to some leftover scrapes that hadn't healed on their own, then dropped my body onto the bed. My cock, still full of blood, snaked up my abdomen. I grabbed it and tugged. Paul's mouth would be soft, his throat pliant and hot. I spat into my palm and slicked my shaft before choking it with both hands. His ass would be tight, especially with a dick like mine ... I pumped harder with my arms, Paul's face turning over his shoulder in my fantasy, his gaze peering deep into mine. I forgot my dick. Hell, I forgot myself. All I could think of were those beautiful blue eyes staying with me forever.
I rolled over and groaned into the pile of stiff pillows. Most dragons were mated by their second cycle. This was my third. The urge to make him mine--in every way--overwhelmed me. Because he wasn't just a fuck. He was the one. And a Top Lander, no less.
Tread carefully, I told myself. This is no ordinary mating...
No, I had a feeling making Paul mine would be anything but ordinary.
I made a mental note to pick up some Earth mouthwash for Shaum. He'd agreed to the wager, and, the way he hated the taste of cum, he was going to need it.