Home > The Wicked (Vampire Huntress Legend #8)(6)

The Wicked (Vampire Huntress Legend #8)(6)
Author: L.A. Banks

"You don't have to do this, you know," he finally said in a pleasant, mellow tone, just loving the way her white tank top fit her and the way her sheer white sarong hung low on her hips. He watched her unfettered br**sts bounce as she moved. He wondered if she had on underwear. There was no visible line of a barrier, and the mystery of it all added to the excitement of watching her work. Did life get any better than this?

"I know," she said in a cheerful voice, seeming oblivious to his thoughts; then she stopped to kiss the bridge of his nose across the counter dividing them and went back to her disorganized puttering.

"But you're a vegetarian-you don't even eat steak." He laughed and poured them both another glass of merlot as a diversion, to give his hands something to do, rather than grabbing her.

"So? I know how to cook one, though."

Carlos raised an eyebrow. "Uh... you don't really have to cook it all that much for me... just a flash on both sides, and-"

"Yeah, yeah, I know... leave it running blood." Damali sucked her teeth. "I still don't see how you can go there with beef, but I'm not gonna start."

They both laughed.

"What can I say?" Carlos ran his tongue over the slight hint of fangs that had begun to crest just from the sound of her voice. "Baby, I don't want anything green on my plate, and you don't have to put a bunch of mushrooms and onions and stuff on the steak," he added in protest when she began making him a side salad. "You do the tabouli and hummus, and pita, and rice and beans and all that... just-"

"Carlos," she fussed. "You're still mostly human and need to eat a balanced meal. Vegetables are good for you."

He sighed. "Then go light on the garlic, okay?" His smile widened when she waved her hand at him. "I know all the blood-cleansing properties and what the health food digests say, but truth be told, it still gives me wicked heartburn," he said, laughing hard as she frowned. "Not everything came out of the sunlight straight, and if you smother that steak with that marinade you're concocting, you might as well drag me back to the family house on a livery tonight." He arched an eyebrow again and gave her a sly smile as he began peeling the fruit she'd shoved toward him. "I had other plans... but, uh, whatever you fix, I'll eat."

She set the small bowl of marinade down hard and chuckled. "Flash it, two seconds on each side-no salt, no pepper, no nothing?"

"Au naturel works best for me... you know that." He glimpsed her from the corner of his eye, and was rewarded by her brilliant smile.

"Fine." She moved to the counter and sipped her wine, keeping the butcher block between them, and then turned back to the stove.

As she moved about, all he could envision was the way her white wings would slowly unfold from her shoulders at the height of mak�ing love. Her satiny smooth legs peeked out from the sarong each time she pivoted to get something out of the cabinets or the fridge, and her bare feet sounded like a soft sigh.Thank you, God... She washis wife. He could get used to the institution, for sure.

He burst out laughing as she pulled the steak out of the broiler, lifted it with a fork and a droll expression, then eased it onto a plate- her eyes saying yuck.

"Now do I act like that when I hand you a piece of fruit?" he asked, cutting off a juicy hunk of pineapple and feeding it to her over the counter.

"Fruit doesn't run blood, Carlos."

"Oh, no? Then what's this?" he said, leaning in toward her and kissing the juice off her chin, totally ignoring the steak between them. "The fruit is bleeding... just 'cause it's sweet and almost clear doesn't mean it's not-"

"Oh, man! You are ruining pineapple for me forever!" she squealed, wiping her chin with the back of her hand.

"Then come over here and sit down and let me make it up to you. Gimme that terrible image... and let me work with it," he said, his laughter becoming a low rumble in his chest. "Sun's going down, too... sheeit. I'll make pineapple your passion again before the night's over."

"Eat your dinner," she argued, playfully escaping his grasp but coming to sit beside him on a blond oak stool. "I went to all this trouble, the least you could do is taste it."

"All right, all right," he said resignedly, pulling her into his lap. He kissed her slowly and then looked at her. "I do appreciate everything you've done for me, baby." Closing his eyes, he leaned his forehead against hers. "Bless this food and the one who prepared it. Thank you, God."

They sat that way for a moment, her fingers stroking his hair, bare legs and bare feet touching, arms about each other in a loose embrace.

"I still can't believe we're married," she whispered as her mouth swept his temple. "You're my husband."

"Say it again," he murmured against her ear with his eyes still closed. "I love to hear you say that."

"You're my husband," she whispered and nipped his ear. "You're my sexy... wonderful, forever husband," she said against his throat, making his embrace tighter as she dotted each word with a kiss. "My... husband," she said over his lips, and then pulled back. "So eat."

He smiled and opened his eyes, then took her mouth hard.

"The steak!" she squealed, laughing as he stood up, toppled the stool, and started walking away from the kitchen with her in his arms.

"Oh... the steak?" he said, teasing her. "Oh, yes, the bloody steak." He looked at her, making her shake her head and laugh harder. "Decisions, decisions. My wife, or the steak-the steak, or my wife? Her now and microwaved beef later, or the steak now and her re�heated later? I don't know, D... what should I do?"

"In four days and nights, you've practically starved me," she groaned, still giggling. "Just let me get a little bite of something," she said, laughing harder as he tilted his head to offer her his throat. "I mean something that I candigest, Carlos. Remember food? I'mhun�gry."

"Ah... the lady says she needs human nourishment for stamina. Okay." He paced back to the kitchen, plopped her down on the counter, and stood in front of their plates, one hand on her thigh.

She swallowed a smile, the possessive move to keep her where he'd set her down not lost on her at all. With a mischievous grin, he began feeding her sections of pita dipped in hummus and seemed to revel in the way she slowly cut his steak and offered him a bite of it on his fork.This was heaven. Sheloved when he got that devastated expres�sion in his eyes. But he shook his head.

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