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By Donna Grant
St. Martin's Press Copyright © 2013 Donna Grant
All rights reserved.
He tangled his fingers in her long, thick, ebony tresses, her sighs of pleasure making his blood singe his veins. Her feminine curves were a heady delight to a man starved for her.
Golden skin speaking of Spanish heritage and as smooth as satin called him to touch more of her. He lay on his side, her body pressed against him. His hand glided past the indent of her waist and over a gently flared hip down to her thigh.
Her legs parted instantly. His lungs seized when his fingers delved into the black curls, trimmed and partially shaved, hiding her sex.
"Please," she whispered.
Her voice, seductive and low, beckoned him, urged him. And he wasn't going to disappoint.
He groaned, his cock swelling even more, when her back arched and her nails dug into his shoulders. Her breathy sighs filled the room as he caressed the sensitive flesh of her sex.
It wasn't until she shook from need that he finally dipped a finger inside her. He ground his teeth together at the feel of her slick heat.
She was everything he wanted and more, so much more. To finally have her in his bed, to have his hands on her ... it was almost too good to be true.
Her eyes opened, and he looked into dark pools of desire. She clung to him, her lips parted as her hips rocked against him.
He rolled her onto her back and settled between her legs. She grinned up at him, daring him to take her. His arousal grazed her sex, causing her to gasp at the sensation.
He fisted his hands in the pillow and brought his raging body back under control. He would have her, but he wanted her screaming in pleasure first. Only then would he fill her with his cock.
With a dip of his head, he bent and closed his mouth around a turgid nipple. His tongue circled the peak before he began to suckle.
She cried out and held his head between her hands. He moved to her other breast and teased that nipple until she was writhing beneath him.
Now, now he would kiss down her body until his lips were on her sex. He would bring her to the brink several times before he allowed her to climax.
Then he would plunge inside her, have her legs wrap around him as he brought them to ecstasy.
He kissed the valley between her breasts, but before he could place another kiss on her sweet skin, she rolled him onto his back and straddled him.
His heart missed a beat. She was a magnificent sight with her wealth of midnight hair falling around her shoulders to lay alongside her full, tempting breasts.
Her chest rose and fell rapidly. He was caught in her fawn-colored gaze. For the first time in his life, he wasn't in control of the lovemaking. She was.
And it thrilled him far more than was comfortable.
Her full lips tilted up in the barest of smiles. A smile that said she knew exactly what she was doing to him. And she loved it.
He swallowed heavily, his rod jumping with anticipation. His balls tightened when she reached down and took him in hand. Somehow he kept his hands in the sheets, fisted tightly. Sweat broke out over his body as he fought to keep still for her.
Only for her. No other woman had ever commanded him in such a way, and he feared no other ever would.
She was on her knees, her entrance above his arousal while she ran her hands up and down his length. She was teasing him as he planned to tease her.
He'd never ached for a woman before. Not once had he hungered to have a certain woman in his arms. But she changed everything.
No longer could he hold off from touching her. He cupped her bountiful breasts and flicked his thumbs over her nipples. In response, she swirled her thumb over the head of his shaft.
He groaned and lifted his hips. His cock came in contact with the soft folds of her sex, and his control snapped.
As if she knew he had gone over the brink, she lowered herself onto him. He was mindless, feral with need. With a jerk, he pulled her down as he raised his hips until he was fully seated inside her. She groaned, her head thrown back and the ends of her hair brushing his thighs.
For a second, he couldn't move. Her tight, slick walls held him suspended between agony and pleasure, torment and release. He knew in that moment that she commanded his body.
His fear was that her reach would extend past his body to his heart, or worse — his soul.
With his heart hammering in his chest, she began to rock her hips. He closed his eyes to feel every delightful, perfect minute of her.
There was a slight thumping that intruded upon him, but he was determined to ignore it. He rolled over, taking her with him. He lost her in the blankets. Panic seized him as he searched, only to find himself clutching a pillow instead of her soft body.
Phelan opened his eyes to the pillow and flopped onto his back. He threw an arm over his eyes as his cock ached for relief.
"Fuck," he ground out in vexation.
The dreams he was having of Aisley intensified every night, leaving him aroused and unsatisfied no matter how many times he tried to pleasure himself afterward.
He had been on her trail for almost two months now. He still wasn't sure why he let her walk out of that nightclub after he first kissed her.
He hadn't expected her to run. Women didn't run from him.
But Aisley did.
That was part of why she intrigued him, but it went beyond that. She was different. That one kiss they shared had rocked him to his very core. No matter how he tried, he couldn't stop thinking about her. Or wanting her.
His mobile phone vibrated on the bedside table. Phelan pondered not answering it, but he knew they would only call again.
"What?" he demanded as he answered the call.
"What the hell is your problem?" Charon's voice asked with a note of irritation.
Phelan rubbed his eyes with his thumb and forefinger. He hoped the call would cool his ardor, but if it didn't, another cold shower to start the day would. "It doesna matter. What's the reason for the call?"
The pause on the other end of the line had Phelan glancing over at the clock. The bright green lights staring back at him told him it was 2:33 in the morning.
"Charon," Phelan urged as the silence grew.
"We're getting desperate," Charon said tightly. "There's been no sign of Jason."
Jason Wallace. The very reason Phelan had to take extra time away from tracking Aisley. Jason was a drough, a Druid who gave part of his soul to the Devil in order to use black magic.
Phelan untangled his legs from the sheets and sat up. "I've seen nothing of him. Maybe Jason is dead as we've suspected all along."
"I need to know for certain."
Phelan drew in a deep breath, hating the weariness and worry he heard in his friend's voice. "Laura is safe. She's with you."
"Are any of us ever really safe with a drough about?" Charon asked. "My wife asks me to forget about Wallace, but I hear Laura on the phone with the other Druids talking about ways to use their magic to look for him."
Phelan scrubbed a hand down his face. How many times had the mies used the magic nature gave them to look for Wallace? The mies were the good Druids and luckily on their side.
Despite the Druids' magic and the powers within Warriors like Phelan, they had found nothing of Jason Wallace. The Druids had potent magic, but as a Highlander with a primeval god inside him, Phelan should have found Jason by now.
He had been alone for so long, and he thought it would always be that way. Then he found Charon. An unlikely friendship had begun between them that brought them as close as brothers.
After one monster of a betrayal, Phelan found it difficult to trust. Charon had changed all of that. Phelan would do anything for the man he considered a brother.
However, it wasn't just for Charon that he searched for Wallace. It was for himself. He wanted to put the past behind him. He wanted to think of a future that included peace — or as much peace as a Warrior could ever achieve.
"I'm no' giving up," Phelan stated. "I'm tired of fighting droughs. First Deirdre, then Declan, and now Jason. It has to end sometime."
"Laura keeps reminding me there can no' be good without evil. There's a balance."
"Aye. This last time evil nearly won."
Phelan hated to think how close they had been to losing the last battle. Fortunately, Charon had made some powerful friends at Dreagan Distillery. Those "friends" ended up being dragon shifters.
The Dragon Kings had been around since the beginning of time. It was on their land the battle had been fought with the dragons in the skies and Warriors on the ground.
"It was too damn close," Charon agreed softly.
"Any word from Rhys or the others at Dreagan?"
Charon grunted. "Nothing. They have their hands full right now, but they're keeping an eye out for us."
"What of the selmyr?"
Just thinking of the hideous beasts made Phelan bite back a growl. The selmyr were ancient creatures that fed off magical entities. The Druids and Warriors were perfect meals. The only thing the selmyr feared were the Dragon Kings.
"Nothing," Charon said with a sigh. "The waiting is wearing on Laura."
"All will be well, my friend," Phelan vowed. "I can stop my search and help you keep watch over Laura."
Phelan would do it in a heartbeat after everything Charon had done for him, but he prayed he wouldn't have to give up searching for Aisley. He had to find her, to taste her sweet lips once more and know if the kiss had been a one-time thing, or if there was something between them.
"Nay. You and Malcolm are the only ones out looking for Wallace."
The first ghost of a grin pulled at Phelan's lips. "Ah, so the infamous MacLeod Druids couldna talk their men into allowing them out to look, aye?"
"Nay," Charon said, a smile in his voice. "Neither could the Warriors persuade the women to let them go."
"Oh, I can imagine the bickering going on at the castle now."
"Which is one reason we are no' there," Charon said. "Where are you anyway?"
Phelan rose from the bed and walked to the window to look out over the city. "Glasgow. I'll head west at dawn."
"Keep in touch."
"Same to you."
Phelan ended the call and tossed the mobile phone on the bed. He put his palms against the window and dropped his head. Without even trying to, Phelan could feel Aisley's magic.
It had always been so between Warriors and Druids. It began centuries ago when Rome invaded their land. The Celts stood against Rome, but that couldn't last forever.
That's where the Druids came in. The mies had no answer for the Celts, but the droughs did. They brought up gods long buried in Hell to inhabit the bodies of the strongest warriors from each family.
Those men became the first Warriors and soon defeated Rome. But the droughs hadn't been able to remove the gods from the men. It took the combined magic of droughs and mies to bind the gods.
The gods then moved through the bloodline to the strongest warrior of each generation. Until a power-hungry drough named Deirdre found the scroll detailing how to unbind the gods and which clan to start with — MacLeod.
It was the three MacLeod brothers who were matched in every way that were the first Warriors to have their god unbound. After that, it didn't take Deirdre long to find others.
Four hundred years ago the MacLeods, and the group of Warriors and Druids who sought sanctuary at their castle, nearly ended Deidre.
Unbeknownst to them, a drough in the twenty-first century had his sights on Deirdre. Declan used his magic to bring Deirdre forward in time.
While the Druids of MacLeod Castle combined their magic to send Warriors into the future to find Deirdre, Charon and Phelan had lived in the quiet glory of four centuries without droughs trying to take over the world.
It had been wonderful, and Phelan craved that same calm again.
But nothing could last forever. Deirdre and Declan had combined forces, but luck had been on the Warriors' side. It had been one of the greatest moments of Phelan's life watching Deirdre die.
It hadn't taken them long to kill Declan either. It should have ended there, but it didn't.
A year later a new evil took Declan's place — his cousin, Jason Wallace.
Phelan turned away from the window and walked into the bathroom to turn on the shower.
The Druids could overpower a Warrior. Phelan had not only seen it done, but had it done to him. Their only saving grace was the fact a Warrior could detect magic. A mies magic felt soothing and ... right. While a drough's magic was like something was trying to smother him.
Phelan stepped into the shower and closed his eyes as he took in Aisley's magic. Hot water pounded his shoulders, but everything he was centered on Aisley's magic. The feel of it wasn't just powerful and amazing. It was seductive, erotic, and altogether astonishing.
He wasn't sure where she was, but she was close. Close enough that he could feel her magic. It's how he was tracking her.
Somehow she knew when he got close, because she would run again.
But she couldn't run forever.CHAPTER 2
Aisley Wallace sat on the roof of the building with her eyes closed. The thump of the music vibrated through the building's bricks and into her body, giving her the illusion that she was on the dance floor in the midst of a crowd of dancing bodies.
She didn't dare go into the nightclub since Phelan knew how much she loved the music and always showed up wherever she was. Though she couldn't go in the club, she could listen to the music.
Music always calmed her. It was a part of her soul. It moved her, touched her as nothing else could.
She opened her eyes and looked out over the city. It wasn't just Phelan she was running from, but Jason Wallace as well. She knew her cousin wasn't dead.
Jason was ruthless and brutal. He always thought of everything, which put him two steps ahead of everyone. There was no way he hadn't planned on dying and finding a way back to the living.
But Aisley wasn't sure if Jason was really dead. She hoped he was, she prayed he was, but she never had much luck in those sorts of things.
The sound of a motorbike had her sitting up straight. Was it Phelan? She jumped up and rushed to the edge of the building to peer over the side.
Her heart hammered wildly in her chest as she searched. As soon as she found the motorbike she knew it wasn't Phelan's. The thread of disappointment didn't go unnoticed by her, but she refused to acknowledge it.
She knew exactly who Phelan was. He and the other Warriors had hunted her and the other droughs with Jason. Which meant he should know who she was.
Yet he had kissed her. What a kiss it had been, too. Even two months later her lips still tingled when she thought about the masterful way he had seduced with one kiss.
What she didn't understand is why Phelan kissed her. He'd acted as though he liked it as well. How could that be when he had to have felt her drough magic? She was the enemy.
Was he teasing her before he killed her? Aisley turned around and sat on the edge of the building with a loud exhale.
For just a moment during their kiss, she had forgotten the person she was. For the briefest second in time, she had been just a woman kissing a gorgeous man in a darkened hallway of a nightclub.
Reality had come crashing down on her all too soon. She had been given a reprieve from Jason during the battle with the Warriors, a battle in which she had left Jason to his own defenses. If he was alive, he would never forgive her. Jason's retribution would be swift and horrible.
But neither was she about to find herself killed because she liked Phelan's kisses.
Two different men, two different reasons, but both had her on the run.
All she could think about was saving her own hide when she should be delving into what she knew of Jason to make sure he was dead — and remained that way.
Aisley lifted her face as a gust of wind whipped through the buildings. Dark clouds, heavy with moisture had moved over the city a few hours earlier. They hid the moon from view, and it wouldn't be long before the rain came.
The seasons were shifting, and with it the daylight hours were growing shorter. Soon, there would be just a few hours of daylight.
Everything changed. Perhaps it was time Aisley had a change as well. At dawn she would leave Scotland and travel to England.
London was big enough for her to get lost in for a while. After that, maybe Paris. And then ... who knew?
Excerpted from Midnight's Temptation by Donna Grant. Copyright © 2013 Donna Grant. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
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