Home > Dreams of a Dark Warrior (Immortals After Dark #11)(17)

Dreams of a Dark Warrior (Immortals After Dark #11)(17)
Author: Kresley Cole

"Then you were mistaken," he lied. Going mad. He'd looked up the language in the Order's databases, but he'd comprehended none of it.

Though he'd understood her perfectly.

"Tel me, Chase, how'd you feel after capturing me in New Orleans? all petered out after your burst of strength?"

"Does anyone not feel fatigue after exertion, Valkyrie?"

"I'll bet your senses are real y acute. You can see and hear better than anyone you know, can't you?"

He merely shrugged.

"I figured you'd deny your abilities."

"I don't deny them. I deny that I'm a berserker."

"How can you admit to one but not the other?"

"I suspect your oracle Nix set this up. She made sure you were caught by me, and that you'd been informed of any unusual skil s I possess. A mortal berserker would match me most closely. This is all a scam."

"Funny. You weren't stupid in your other rein-carnations."

Can't throttle her again ...

"I saw you've got another berserker here. Didn't he feel familiar to you?"

"He's in on this too. You two obviously know each other and crafted this plan. I checked on his capture -he all but lay down to be taken. As if he'd known you would be captured as well."

The Valkyrie nodded. "He wanted in here so he could be near me. He's my ... protector."

Protector. So they were lovers. Why did the idea make him want to beat the berserker into the ground?

Brandr's hands on her glowing skin. Declan couldn't remember the last time he'd wanted to kil this badly. His thoughts grew dim, primitive.

- Mine by right! Meant only for me.-

"Chase, your eyes are ablaze right now. Just go look in the mirror."

He abruptly stood, crossing to the other window. "And give credence to your lies?"

She moved behind him. In a soothing voice, she murmured, "Be at ease."

At once, he felt his lids growing heavy, his muscles relaxing. What hold does she have over me?

"What's got you like this?"

His response to her only angered him more. "Your bul shite tales."

"This is all true."

He turned to her. "Then how do you explain what Nix said to me? I was at Val Hal earlier on the night I captured you. When you drove by, she stared me directly in the face and mouthed, You're late."

"I'm going to kil her!" Lightning flashed just outside the window. "You're right about one thing-Nix did set this up. But I vow that I'm as much of a pawn as you are."

"To what end?"

"She knew how much I missed Aidan. This would strike her as a perfect solution, forced intimacy and all that. She's probably cackling with her creepy little bat right now."

"Missed Aidan? Valkyrie, get your story straight. You just said you were with Brandr."

She gave a laugh. "With Brandr? Please." Another snicker. "No, I said he's my protector. As in, he tries to look out for me."

Declan's relief disgusted him, making his ire escalate again. He moved away from her, back to his desk.

"Why would he sacrifice himself?"

"He was your best friend," she said. "You made him vow that he'd earn ohal a and watch over me."

"Ohal a?"

"If you won two hundred battles while bearing Woden's mark, he'd grant you immortal life and strength."

True or not, this was fascinating. "What was his mark?"

"Two ravens."

Declan just stifled the urge to touch the charm at his neck. The one imprinted with two birds in flight.

He cast his mind back to the day he'd gotten it. He'd been six, and the nightmares had just started. His da had been worried about him, and though their family could il afford it, he'd taken Declan and Colm to a fair. A fortune-tel er had given Declan the charm, tell ing him to keep it close to his heart for luck. ...

"Chase?"

He quickly said, "That's why Brandr is deathless?"

"Yeah, against all odds, he earned ohal a. Now he's as strong as most vamps and demons. Fast, too. When he hits a rage, he could take on even a Lykae."

"He kept his vow this long?" So Aidan had enjoyed Regin as his woman and a loyal friend as well.

"For the first two hundred years, he fol owed me and Lucia everywhere, ready to step in with the rescuing. We ditched him at every opportunity. finally Nix felt sorry for him and told him she'd let him know if I was in danger-or if you were returning."

"Why didn't Aidan earn ohal a?"

"You were working on it, intending to marry me once you became immortal." She sat on the floor with her knees to her chest, her head resting against the window. "You asked me to stay with you while you fought your battles. To me, you should have been merely an interesting mortal, but something about you drew me. I decided to give you a chance." She smiled to herself, murmuring. "As well as my virginity."

He tensed, appal ed to catch himself wondering what it would've been like to be her first lover.

He knew what she was doing, knew she was planting the seed so he'd imagine it. And he did, envisioning laying her down and inching his way into her untried sex. Catching her gasp of surprise with his lips ...

He grew hard yet again. Earlier, one look at her braless br**sts in that T-shirt had made him stiff as wood. Before encountering her, he'd gone ten years without so much as a twitch. And now this. Where was his control?

"Even after a mil ennium, I just have to think about us together and my claws curl." She twisted around so he could see them.

They had curled. His voice rougher, he asked, "What do your claws have to do with it?"

She gave a laugh. "You'll find out soon enough." Before he could demand an answer, she continued, "Life in your camp was satisfying. Life with you was"-she sighed wistful y-"thrilling."

"Who was Aidan warring against?"

"Leeches. Always the Vampire Horde. You'd positioned your army in a strategic pass, and every day you battled them back, to protect the mortal vil ages in the val ey below. You, a berserker from the Lore, saved thousands of human lives."

He impatiently waved her on.

"You kept your army honed and well trained, and your men loved you, would have fol owed you into hell."

Declan's men feared and despised him. And I don't give a shite as long as they follow orders.

In a distant tone, she began to describe camp life-the dress, the weapons, the mead hal with snarling bears' heads on the wal s-until he could almost smel the smoke of fire pits and roasting game, could nearly hear the incessant clang of swords in the training yard.

It was a man's world she described, one that appealed to Declan.

He found himself relaxing, getting caught up in her tale. And all the while she searched his face for glimmers of recognition. "Any of this ringing a bell?"

"Not as of yet. Continue."

"You trained me yourself. I carry two swords to this day because of you. I'd always wanted to wield this great sword, but it was longer than I was tal ." Then she frowned. "At least, I used to carry those swords."

"I have them stored here." Mere feet from her was the concealed entry into the storage bay. Her weapons were within.

"Do you?" she said nonchalantly, but her eyes had flickered silver. Those swords were very important to her. "I still remember the day you gave them to me." Her face grew soft as she said, "It was a day of firsts." A secretive smile played about her lips.

That smile and her sensual tone got his back up. A day of firsts? He could only imagine what kind of firsts. Jealousy toward this Aidan seared him inside, made Declan want to hurt her for loving him. "Yet your Aidan died."

Her smile faded. "Yes. A vampire traced into our home and slew him."

"You care a great deal about those swords-a gift from your first lover. After a thousand years of acquiring possessions, are these your most cherished?"

More flickering.

"They are," he said. "I think I'll destroy them if you don't provide information about your kind."

"Do it. I don't give a damn."

"Immortals can't bluff, Regin. Your changeable eyes always give you away. And from your reaction, I'd wager you'd do just about anything to preserve them. Answer my questions, or I'll melt them down myself."

"You expect me to jeopardize my sisters?"

"Can all Valkyrie channel energy? Start talking, or I'll give your precious weapons to Warden Fegley, let him f**k about with them. Maybe I'll dispatch them to the Horde with your compliments? Vampires should possess the swords that have fel ed so many of their kind."

Instead of arguing, she rose and sauntered over to him, swinging those hips. A lesser man could grow enthral ed with the movement.

"Chase?" she murmured.

He stood as well. "What?" The air around her was electric, pricking his skin, but it felt good-it felt familiar. As she drew near, it intensified until he was almost shuddering. He stared down at her silver eyes. Mesmerizing.

Thunder rumbled the walls. "Hold on tight, Magister."

Chapter SIXTEEN

Regin's legendary temper? Redlined.

Chase stared down at her in confusion. "Hold on tight? What does that mean?"

"It means that you don't touch my things!" Her leg shot up between his own, her boot connecting with his ballocks.

"Ah! You f**kin' bitch!" he yel ed, fighting to stay upright. "You're goin' to pay for that!" He lumbered forward. "You have no idea what you're rousing."

"Sure I do! A berserker." As she jogged back, she gave a single jerk on her arm, dislocating the same shoulder as yesterday. Before he could reach her, she'd hopped over her bound wrists like a jump rope.

"Because that's what you are!"

He swung a wild punch.

She leapt back, dodging his fist by mil imeters. While he reeled from the swing-and-miss, she readied for another attack, ramming her shoulder into the side of a bookcase. Her shoulder joint rocked into place with an audible pop.

Again he charged. She feinted and spun around behind him, swinging her joined fists at his kidney. But the collar made her slower, weaker. He was able to seize her arm and spin her around with one hand, his other drawn back in a fist.

She lifted her chin, and Chase hesitated-

She took advantage, snapping her head forward, knocking him in the Adam's apple. Then she swooped down, swinging her leg against his ankles, dropping him to his back.

He shot to his feet, faced off against her. "No more mercy for ye, Valkyrie." Holding nothing back, he launched a haymaker at her head.

She ducked and laughed. "That accent you work so hard to hide is coming out! Are ye feckin' Oirish this time? Eh, boyo?" She leapt atop his desk, punting the side of his head. "Those swords are mine! Touch them, and I'll use 'em to slice off your nutsack! For a coin purse!"

When she reared back for another kick, he caught her ankle, yanked. She crashed to the floor.

With a yel , Chase lunged over her, pinning her bound wrists over her head, his h*ps forcing her thighs apart.

She felt him harden in a rush, even after she'd battered his bal s. "Oh, boy! Little Declan's excited to see me! Only little Declan's not little at all . The more things change ..."

When she wriggled beneath him, his jaw slackened, his lids growing heavy. She'd merely meant to tease him, but this heated contact began to affect her as well.

The enticing ridges of his body, his clean scent, the delicious pressure of his thick shaft against her ...She gazed up at his steely-gray eyes and found them so familiar.

Then he shook his head. "Enough! Where do you think you would go if you could best me?"

"I wasn't escaping yet."

He levered himself up on his elbows. "If not an escape attempt, then what was this?"

"A warning not to hurt my swag. Or an icebreaker, considering you're on top of me and we're both hot and bothered. Now, let's kiss and make up."

The Valkyrie was panting, her br**sts pressing against his chest. Her lips were parted, ful and beckoning.

"Kiss you?" As he waited for revulsion to seize him, he found himself wondering how she would react.

Would she moan into his mouth?

"It will help you remember me. Kiss me. Come on, you know you want to so bad. You want me so bad."

"Never." Bloody get off her, get away from her. But he needed to be above her like this, to master her, overpower her.

"Never? That boner of yours just cal ed you a liar."

"You little bitch." He ground it between her legs, wanting to hurt her.

Lightning struck just outside. Her silvery eyes went wide. "Again."

Temptress, his mind screamed. She was beguiling him-

She twisted her h*ps beneath him, rubbing her sex along his length.

He hissed in a breath, rocking against her in answer. Christ, it feels so good. "You'd let me f**k you right here, wouldn't you? Take you on the floor like a common whore."

"Another couple of thrusts like that, Chase, and I'll have to demand it." She arched her back.

Her shirt was riding up, revealing the beginning swel of her br**sts. Her ni**les were still covered, but they'd puckered against the material. Want to see them.

An involuntary thrust of his h*ps made her br**sts bounce, uncovering more glowing skin. Almost to her ni**les.

His c*ck was throbbing. When he rocked it between her thighs, the pressure made him grit his teeth with both pleasure and pain. With another couple of thrusts, he'd come atop her; at that moment, he wanted to.

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