Home > Nightshifted (Edie Spence #1)(8)

Nightshifted (Edie Spence #1)(8)
Author: Cassie Alexander

CHAPTER TEN

We drove in his car back to my place in silence. The car smelled like his scent and leather and it handled the light snow with ease. He parked in front of my apartment without offering any comment on the fact that his car cost as much as the three cars parked beside it combined.

We didn’t talk because I think we’d both done this sort of thing before. When you’re quiet, you can envelop the other person in the fantasy of what you want them to be. Talking only gives them a chance to mess it up. I trotted up to my door and unlocked it and pretended that I was shivering just because of the cold.

There was only one hallway in my apartment. He walked past me and down it like he’d been there before and I found myself drawn along in his wake. When I reached my own room, it was like he was waiting for me there, like it was a lair, his place, not mine. He turned toward me and stared at me for half a second. This was my last chance to change my mind, to make him leave, I knew it.

But I never back down. If I ever gave fear a fighting chance, my life would be all but over. I smiled defiantly and he caught my head between his hands and pulled me close.

Kissing wasn’t the word. It began as tasting, but then—biting. I stiffened for a moment, wondering if I’d been fool enough to invite a vampire home with me—but no. The teeth that pulled at my lips were human. But the need behind them—he was as hungry as I was. I wondered what he was running from, and then his hands were at my hips.

Teeth at my jaw, neck, and collarbone, while his hands, cold from outside, ran up my back. I pressed into him, away from their chill, as his fingers ran under my bra and then forward, to cup my br**sts. He walked me backward into the wall and pinned me there, lifting my shirt on his arms, pushing it up so that he could reach my ni**les with his teeth.

I gasped at his cold nose and cheek against my breast, and then I reached forward to grab at his shirt, to claw it up his back. He pulled back and yanked it off himself, as I did the same, and then he reached for me. He picked me up easily, tossed me onto my own bed, and knelt beside me there.

He was above me, his pants still on, back arched, looking down at me. I felt like prey and I liked it. He wanted me weak and helpless, and maybe for a second I wanted those things too. Wordlessly, he grabbed my hands and yanked them over my head, to pin both down with one hand. He reached down and undid his belt buckle with his other hand, then plunged his fingers under my skirt, yanking my tights and panties down to find a ready home within me. My h*ps arched and I fought against my confinement—at first, just testing boundaries, but then, fighting just to fight, to see if I could get loose, how tight he would hold, how serious he was in keeping me still.

His one hand clenched around my wrists, while the other made come-hither motions, deep inside of me. He sped up as I writhed, pinned on his fingers, and I stopped trying to escape.

I was full of him, but not full enough yet. I looked up into his charcoal-dark eyes.

“Yes?” he asked, his lips drawn to the side in a soft smirk.

“You can f**k me now.”

He laughed. “Gladly.”

He pushed my legs apart with his knees, pulled out his cock, and entered me all in one smooth movement. I curled forward and bit his shoulder when he hit the back of me, crying out in surprise at his length, then ground my h*ps against his in desire.

We made the quiet noises of f**king then, the moans, the sound of skin hitting skin, the buckle of his belt chiming with his thrusts.

When I remembered, I would fight him, pushing back with my arms against both his hands now trapping me down. I didn’t want to find I could get free.

His c*ck found the back of me again and again, and I kept shuddering in delight, but—I just couldn’t relax enough to come.

He rocked above me, olive skin slick with sweat against my paler hue. He was beautiful, goddammit, and the sex was hot, but my mind wasn’t all there. No matter how much I fought him or gave in to him in turns, I couldn’t f**k away my fears.

I thought about faking it, but that’d be a disservice to all womankind. So I fought against him harder, found his mouth with mine, biting him back till he was too distracted to stop himself. He thrust into me hard, harder, hardest, until he came with a gasping exhalation deep inside of me.

He lay above me for a moment, sweat dripping from his chest onto mine. Then he carefully rolled off me, to my side. I saw him inspecting me by the lamplight my blinds let in. Maybe he hadn’t even really looked at me until now. I brought my hands down from above my head, my arms sore, and rested one hand on my cheek, the other on my chest.

“You should come too—” he said, and reached down my stomach toward the space between my legs.

“No, that’s okay.” I caught his hand with mine. “It’s just one of those nights.”

He brought my freshly scarred left hand up in his and inspected it by the lamplight outside. “What’s this? Did I hurt you?”

It was Mr. November’s mark upon me, Anna’s bite, and my suture scars. Everything I’d tried to throw away from me tonight had followed me home. I shook my head. “It was an accident.” I clasped my hand into a fist. He turned my hand toward him and kissed my closed fingers lightly before releasing them back to me.

He rocked up to sitting, and then to standing by the side of the bed. Everything he did was fluid—I wondered if he’d lied about not dancing, before.

“I’ve got to go.”

I laughed, and made a show of covering a yawn. “Fine, Cinderella. I was just about to kick you out.”

He paused from the labor of his belt buckle and looked at me again. “You know, you’re the first girl who’s said that that I think meant it. What’s your name?”

I shook my head. “No names. You know where the door is. Forget the address on your way out.”

“Ahhh. A tough girl, eh?”

“Quite,” I said, and pointed down the hall.

He tilted his head like a curious dog. He’d been in power all night long, but me there on my own bed, na**d in the lamplight—I was like a Greek goddess as an odalisque, while he scrambled to find his clothing on my floor. “All right, then. See you around, I hope.”

His accent was still as lovely as he was. I did my best to keep my advantage, and gave him a languorous smile. “Perhaps.” He tucked his shirt in and smiled mischievously at me before heading off down my hall. I waited till I heard his car engine rev before heading there after him, to lock my door. Then I went back to my room, where everything still smelled like sex and there was a layer of condensation on the window.

I lay down in my bed and inspected my hand by the lamplight. I hadn’t banished everything for very long, but I fell asleep, fast and hard. Even nonorgasmic sex can be a pretty good exorcism too.

CHAPTER ELEVEN

In my dreams, I was on a boat. That was my first clue I was dreaming, since I had an epic fear of open water based on viewing both Titanic and Shark Week.

It was a clear night and the stars shone overhead. Two people stood on the top deck’s edge, staring out at a black sea. They were facing backward, as if looking at their past.

As I concentrated, my perspective changed and they grew nearer. From here, wherever dream-here was, I realized they were just kids, dressed in that oddly formal way of children from long ago, like little adults. They stood near one another, bundled up against the cold, holding on to the railing—and the little girl I knew.

It was Anna, the vampire that’d bitten me. Blond wisps of hair peeked out from underneath her hat and I could almost imagine her mother’s last kiss upon her brow. She appeared healthy but looked unhappy, staring out like she distrusted the ocean as much as I did.

“Don’t worry. I’ll protect you,” the boy said, in a language I did not understand but instinctively knew the meaning of. He set one of his hands atop hers, and they held on to the railing together.

When I woke I knew there’d been more, but all I could remember was looking out at the horrible sea.

* * *

I slept in till four P.M. or so, and didn’t have any more creepy dreams based on my dual fears of vampires and the ocean. I knew I had the next three days off, but I didn’t know my schedule beyond that. My dining room set wasn’t going to buy itself back. I was already pulled thin beforehand, and now courtesy of Jake and Jake’s monkey, I was stretched drum tight. I called in to see if anything was open that night.

“Sure, I’ll go to pediatric intensive care,” I heard myself tell the Nursing Office on the phone. I hung up before I could say no.

I tried to put things in perspective on my way there. After all, pulling a shift in pedi ICU was better than being in Med-Surg with all the whining postknee ops, strapped into their continuous passive-motion machines. And Y4 had given me pediatric training—some sanctioned donors were children, though I hadn’t met any of them yet—and so I was pediatric life-support certified. That didn’t mean that I was comfortable around kids—rather, I was the opposite—but I figured I could keep two of them alive for the night.

Most importantly, I’d really, really loved my dining room set. I hoped this shift was worth it.

* * *

The pediatric wing was attached to County like an extended middle finger. It was newer than the rest of the buildings, and nicer too, although compared to Y4, anything with a view of a parking lot would be an upgrade.

The lights were already dimmed when I arrived, which muted the bright colors on the walls. Smiling yellow suns appeared menacing and gray above little villages where bowed farmer-people tended fields. A human-sized teddy bear occupied the wall in front of the nurse’s station. I was sure in daylight he looked friendly, but right now he looked like he hoped the charge nurse was hiding a steak.

One of the things I was glad about on Y4 was that we dressed out from the locker room’s supply of green OR scrubs—that way I didn’t have to wear dumb ones with smiling cartoon cats. The Pedi ICU’s charge nurse’s scrubs had winking Betty Boops holding out oversized bandages and lollipops. They looked sarcastic. I almost approved.

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