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By Sandy Lynn
Samhain Publishing, Ltd.Copyright © 2006 Sandy Lynn
All right reserved.
Chapter OneDuncan didn't feel up to a confrontation with the man, and knew Melissa would be upset if he hit her brother. And he doubted she would care who swung the first blow.
Bram wouldn't be too happy either if an incident happened in the middle of his club.
Carefully, he approached her, keeping a lazy eye on the dancing couple, so he wouldn't be taken by surprise if her brother suddenly appeared.
Drawing closer, he watched Melissa at the table, talking with another woman. He knew they were friends, he'd seen them hanging out at the club together but couldn't remember the other woman's name. Her short, auburn hair was styled in a way that gave her the appearance of being sweet and innocent.
Anyone who had ever been around magicks would know better. The woman's power practically sparked as it flowed off of her.
"Of course I think it's cute," Melissa told her friend. "Mona, I swear you are one of the few people that I think can pull off that hairstyle. And no, teenagers don't count. Seriously, you look fabulous."
"I'm just worried that now guys will think ... Hello."
"Hey." He smiled at them, the forced smile turning genuine when he glanced at Melissa.
"Hey," she answered shyly. After a few seconds, she shook her head. "Mona, this is Duncan, he's a bouncer here. Duncan this is a good friend of mine, Mona. Mona's a-"
"I know. I can see the power surrounding her. Pleased to meet you, Mona." He offered his hand.
"It's a pleasure to meet you." She shook his hand, an approving expression on her face. "Not many people would shake my hand, knowing what you do."
"Duncan's not like most people," Melissa said then blushed.
"Well, I think I'm going to go ... do something else. That way if Gareth asks me what's going on, I can honestly say I have no clue. Duncan, it was nice meeting you." Quickly excusing herself from the table, Mona rushed away from them.
"Is everyone afraid of your brother?" He sat down beside her.
"Well, they've seen how he reacted the last time a guy grabbed my ass. We'd just left CS and, to be honest, the guy had to go to the hospital."
"Why? I know for a fact you can protect yourself." He couldn't help grinning at the memory of her punching him. The thought of her doing it again was enough to make his cock twitch with interest inside his pants.
"Yeah, and he knows I can. But I think to him I'll always just be his baby sister, you know?"
"Not really." He shook his head. "And I can honestly say I've never regretted it. I was glad when my parents didn't have anymore kids. They said I was more than enough for them to handle by myself. They weren't sure they could handle another child, especially if I taught it all my tricks."
"That was so mean of them."
"Not really, they were absolutely right. I raised a lot of hell in my day. I was forever ignoring all the rules, and doing what I wanted. And they were also right when they thought I'd teach any siblings my tricks. Not all of them, mind you, but enough to make my mom's hair turn gray. Or should I say grayer? Her beautiful black hair was almost snow white by the time I finished puberty," he told her with a chuckle.
There was a lull in the conversation. Unable to stand the confusion, the not knowing any longer, he blurted out, "Did you change your mind?"
He arched an eyebrow.
"Oh, that. N-No, I didn't. Why did you?"
She looked afraid; so young and vulnerable that even though he knew he should break things off between them, he couldn't. He couldn't reinforce that all men were complete pricks who were only interested in one thing.
He knew men who weren't like that. Like Bram. Bram was a man who deserved a woman like Melissa. He'd say and do all the right things and quickly help her forget about the horrors in her past. But the thought of Bram holding her in his arms pissed him off.
"No, Angel, I didn't change my mind. How could I when you look so beautiful?" Looking around, he motioned for the door. "Wanna get out of here?"
"Where would we go?"
"Anywhere you want to go."
"Even to a movie about knights?" A look of mischief was on her face.
With a groan, his head flopped forward until it hit the table. "Even a movie about knights," he told her grumpily.
Laughing, she was shaking her head when he looked up. Standing up, she took his hand and preceded him out of the club.
Outside, she stood on her tiptoes to give him a quick kiss on the cheek. "You are something else, do you know that?"
Motioning for him stay where he was, Melissa climbed into a taxi and leaned closer to the driver, whispering their destination in his ear.
She'd made certain he stayed far enough back that he couldn't hear what she told the driver over his radio.
When the driver nodded, she gestured for Duncan to climb in.
"That was just wrong. I said I'd go to the movies." He sulked, curious to know where they were going.
"Yes, but tonight I want you at my mercy. I don't want you to know where we're going until we get there."
Arching his eyebrow, he looked around. "And how are you going to accomplish that?"
Images of Melissa leaning, kissing him as her tongue thrust into his mouth filled his head. He wanted to pull her onto his lap, to bury his face in her neck, breathe her scent deeply.
"Hey," he said, taken by complete shock when she covered his eyes with her hands.
"It's a surprise."
Scooping her up, he pulled her onto his lap.
"What are you doing?"
"I'm just enjoying the ride, Angel." Laying his head against her shoulder, he felt like he was in heaven.
Excerpted from Night's Promise by Sandy Lynn Copyright © 2006 by Sandy Lynn. Excerpted by permission.
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