An Excerpt From: BLADE OF MOONLIGHT
© Copyright KIMBERLY DEAN, 2012.
“You reflect the moon’s light, don’t you, Luminescence?”
No, that wasn’t it, but he was close. She was one with the moon. As it behaved, so did she, but he could never know that about her.
His fingers slid down her breastbone again, and her breaths hitched when he traced the line of the sheet, dangerously close to her nipples. He watched the soft material tent, knowing what he was doing to her. Their gazes connected but, still, she refused to give him anything.
He turned to the hardwood chair beside the bed. She hadn’t even noticed it until he lifted a scrap of material. The bra of her costume dangled from his finger. Her clothes!
His jaw hardened as he toyed with the skimpy top. “That’s why you run around the city in barely more than a bikini, so you can use your power to its full potential. More skin equals more light.”
Her tongue pressed against the roof of her mouth as she struggled not to say anything. He was getting too close to the truth. Her costume wasn’t so much of a style choice, but a necessity. Under a full moon, she could bring down criminals with only her face and her hands bare. But on a night like this—
Her face. Her head whipped to the side, and she searched the chair, hoping against hope. Her stomach dropped when she spotted her mask draped across its high back. The strip of black material might cover only her eyes, but it had protected her identity. Until now.
He’d seen her face.
He dropped the bikini top and picked up the black bottoms. They were made of a synthetic material, giving her the lightness and maneuverability of spandex, but the toughness of leather. Using both hands, he stretched them, watching them pull shorter to compensate, and shook his head in a strange combination of anger and disgust.
And undisguised interest.
“And more skin equals more skin. That helps rattle the boys, too, doesn’t it?” His head cocked. “What if you’re going up against a villainess?”
Some of them were distracted, too, but she wasn’t going to go there. Luna glared at him belligerently. Identify him. He knew what she looked like, right down to the birthmark on her right hip. He’d stripped her of everything she had. She had to find a way to expose him.
Unfortunately, there wasn’t much to go on. He was big, built and sexy. Her thoughts stalled. She shouldn’t find him attractive—not with the situation he’d put her in—but she did. Adrenaline and pheromones were creating a dangerous chemistry. She had to be careful or she’d get pulled into the reaction.
He held her belt now, the one she normally kept wrapped low around her hips. Everything she needed was on that belt, and she ached for it. Her serrated knife, her palm unit and her taser.
Her gaze stuck on the weapon. He’d grabbed her taser for her?
“The boots,” he said gruffly as he crouched.
Luna cringed. For some reason, his examination of her belongings was as personal as if he’d been going over her naked body inch by inch—which she wasn’t quite sure wasn’t next. She wanted to pull everything back, to hide from his attention.
“The boots are something else, though, aren’t they?” His gray gaze suddenly locked with hers. “They get you off.”
Under the covers, her toes curled. How did he know that? How could he have figured that out? Low-heeled boots or runner’s shoes would have been more feasible, more practical. They had just looked so stupid with her skimpy costume, but the high-heeled black boots? They’d made her cream.
She swallowed again, and this time found her mouth wet with saliva. “The stilettos make good weapons.”
“Meaning they bring down any man with a healthy dick.”
He knew he was right. There was a hint of a dark smile on his lips as he looked at her, and Luna was frustrated she couldn’t see more of his face. He might have gotten rid of the Grim Reaper cape, but his head and torso were covered with a form-fitted, one-piece spandex shirt and ski-mask type of garment. It covered the back of his head and came down over his nose and eyes. Only the lower half of his face was revealed, showing a strong jaw and hard lips. Those lips mocked her now.
“Whatever works,” she snapped. The words were out before she could stop them, and they surprised her. She shouldn’t encourage him. She shouldn’t play along—not in this.
“Oh, they do, sweetheart.” He glanced at the front of his dark jeans and shifted in discomfort. “They definitely do.”
He took another harsh breath that seemed to fuel his anger. With a curse, he began to stride around the room again. “What goes on in that head of yours? What makes you think you can go strutting around half-naked—hell, three-quarters naked—in the most dangerous parts of the city and be safe?”
Outrage hit her. She didn’t strut. When she was out at night, she was fully intent on her work. “You know that I have a cape too. It covers me from head to foot.”
“Until you whip it off and give everyone a good look.”
Her teeth ground together. That was to shine the attention on the bad guys—not herself. She did everything she could to keep herself in the background. She knew how to merge with the darkness. She’d always been smart and safe.
He turned on her, looming over the end of the bed where her legs were spread wide under the thin sheet. “Do you know what some of those scumbags would do to you if they caught you?”
Her stomach clenched, and her outrage dimmed. The real question was, what was he going to do with her?
She watched him unblinkingly, afraid to move, afraid to say anything that would make him more upset than he already was. His lips might mock her, but his fingers were clenched and his breaths heaved. The stretchy material of his costume clung to a chest that was heavily muscled. In the dark shadows, each hard curve and dip was delineated. His uniform kept him as covered as she was left bared, and the disparity struck her. Dark versus light. Good versus evil.
Her need to see his face grew to a craving. She wanted to know the color of his hair. Was it thick and silky? Dark and wavy? She wanted to touch that chest, with nothing between her fingertips and his skin.
And she knew it was wrong. All of it. He hadn’t rescued her. He’d pulled her further into the depths of danger. All that darkness might be seductive, but temptations were rarely good for you. She knew this man was bad for her, right down to his core.
“I’ll have you put away for this,” she said quietly. “I’ll have you put away for life.”
His expression went even darker. “You and what army?”
“The justice system will be enough.”
A bark of laughter escaped him, the sound rusty and harsh. He moved again and suddenly he was over her, his hands braced on either side of her pillow. “If you believe that, then you’re an even bigger fool than I thought.”
His body hovered inches above hers, close but still too far away. Her body tingled, wanting what it shouldn’t. Then his hand was fisting in the sheet, his knuckles pressing hard between her breasts. When he ripped the covering off her, it was like being splashed with chilled air. He tossed the sheet aside, baring her all the way to her cuffed ankles and pink-painted toenails. Luna arched, wanting to run, wanting to hide, but there was no escape.
His big hand covered one breast, and that cool heat poured through her. “Are you out there fighting for truth and justice, Luminescence, or does the danger just turn you on?”
“You won’t win,” she gasped.
“The hell I won’t.”
He squeezed her nipple hard, but then his touch was gone. It reappeared, lower and hotter. He cupped her pussy and ground the ball of his hand against her. Luna’s thighs quivered. With her legs spread wide, he could touch her however he liked, whenever he liked. Her hips pressed into the mattress as he slid his thumb between her soft, delicate folds. When he lifted it, it was wet.
“What is it that gets you going?” he asked, his voice going steely. “Danger, or me?”
She couldn’t respond. What he was doing was shocking, titillating, and she shouldn’t like it. Couldn’t like it. It went against everything she believed in, everything she’d put herself on the line for, but she couldn’t dispute the evidence.
He bent down over her, his gray eyes turning pewter.
“Danger?” He swirled his thumb deliberately around her clit. “Or me?”