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"Are you, perhaps, afraid to spend time alone with me?" The question brought him closer.
"No, of course not." She took a step back, coming to stop against the wall.
"Do you think I might take advantage of you?" He raised a hand to each side of her head, bracing them on the wall behind her and effectively blocking her escape.
"No, I'm sure you wouldn't do that. You're a gentlemen, after all." She said the words, but he didn't think she quite believed them. Her gaze darted all around, looking for a way out.
"Even a gentleman might be tempted," he breathed close to her temple, intoxicated by her essence. He turned his head a fraction and kissed the soft skin of her forehead. She trembled, but when a tumultuous sigh escaped, tickling his neck, it was his undoing.
One hand remained braced against the wall, holding him steady and slightly apart from her. The other gently tilted her chin. As he lowered his head, he caught the glint of passion in her eyes and smiled. Not a smile of spite, for he didn't want her on opposite sides from him. He smiled for joy that she shared some of the same feelings that had been tormenting him throughout the past months of her employment at Wildwood.
Her lips were as he remembered: hot and soft and sweet. He ached to move closer, but deliberately held himself back, keeping a very thin barrier of air between them, until she stepped away from the wall, wrapping her arms around his neck. He groaned, circling her waist and pulling her to him. Passion ignited quickly and he couldn't have said who started it; only that he didn't want it to end.
He slanted his mouth across hers; his tongue traced the softness of her lips. Whenhis hands slid down to her buttocks to tighten his hold, she didn't pull away from the evidence of his passion. She didn't even gasp. Instead, she moved her hips in a subtle but erotic motion and Nicholas thought he would make love to her right there on the floor.
"Good God, how did you ever learn to do that?" He gasped the feverish words against her brow as he kissed his way to her ear.
"Do what?" Her breath tickled his neck. Her hands were at his shirt front, plucking at the buttons before he was even aware of what she was doing. Hot lips peppered his skin with kisses and a flash fire of passion exploded in his loins.
He pushed her back against the wall to maintain the pressure of his hips against hers, and to allow his hands more freedom. In a frenzy, he jerked at the buttons of her blouse, all the while kissing her with a force which alternately frightened and exulted him.
Never in his experience had he encountered such a giving, uninhibited creature. To have her respond to him in such a manner went beyond his wildest expectations. Though he had never tried to kiss Lycinda in such a manner, neither had she exhibited the desire to share passion with him.
Like a gust of cold air, reality swept through Nicholas, effectively dousing his passion. He stepped away from Jaci and quickly turned his back.
In a voice more steady than his still rigid body should have allowed, he said, "Forgive me. That was unpardonable." He forced himself to stay turned, knowing if he looked into her eyes, he would kiss her again.
A hesitant sigh floated toward him. When she spoke, her voice sounded as strained as his own. "I don't understand the customs here, but you don't need to apologize for kissing me."
"It was much more than a kiss," he stated forcibly, "and would have gone even farther if--" He stopped, feeling guilty and afraid of saying the wrong thing.
She laughed hoarsely. "You're right, it was definitely more than a kiss. But the only unpardonable part was not finishing what you started."
Posted July 4, 2011
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