Rule breaker, p.28
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       Rule Breaker, p.28

         Part #20 of Breeds series by Lora Leigh

  s lips, wanting to know who to kill later. The word was forming, as though in slow motion, and she knew, just as she always knew, what Grody was whispering to her brother. She knew, but somehow, for some reason, it was as though her gaze blanked, darkened, stealing the image. Except this time, it was shorter, the darkness more shadowed than absolute, almost giving her the secret she’d fought to remember for nine years. Then, Grody was straightening and chuckling at the tormented shock in Mark’s expression, and the betrayal.

  She knew who it was, why couldn’t she see the name? She knew that the man who had betrayed her brother was his friend. She could tell from Mark’s expression it was someone very close to him.

  Mark nodded slowly, his gaze meeting Gypsy’s as he stared back at her intently, a message in his green eyes that she fought to decipher.

  “Any last words, kids?” Grody asked then, his amusement evil, his voice sending cold chills raking at her back.

  “Mark?” Her voice trembled, terror shaking through her as she fought not to scream again, not to lose control, though she couldn’t stop her tears.

  “Don’t cry, Gypsy,” he told her as the Coyote, Grody, had laughed at him. “Don’t cry, and be brave, Peanut. Do you hear me?”

  Grody moved behind Mark then, gripping his long hair and suddenly jerking her brother’s head back until his neck was stretched painfully. And a second later a knife pressed against the side of his neck, so sharp that the edge immediately had blood welling against it.

  “No! Oh God, please. Please. No!” Gypsy screamed, begging, crying as she struggled against the ropes holding her to the front bumper of the vehicle. “Oh God, please. Please don’t hurt him.”

  “Listen to her beg, Mark,” Grody laughed as her brother’s gaze met hers.

  Be brave, Peanut . . . he mouthed. I love you.

  He never told her to be brave. He always comforted her and told her she was allowed to cry. That little sisters didn’t have to be brave, that was what brothers were for. And now, she had to be brave.

  “Please. Please,” she cried out, screaming, begging as she fought the ropes until her wrists burned and she could feel the dampness of her blood. “Please don’t hurt him.”

  “Will she beg so pretty when I’m fucking her, McQuade?”

  Her brother didn’t have a chance to answer him. Immediately, Grody moved the knife, digging it in deep and slicing it over her precious brother’s throat.

  She was screaming. Screaming and fighting the hard hands that were on her, shaking her as someone yelled her name . . .


  “Wake the fuck up, goddammit. Gypsy, wake up now.”

  Rule could feel something exploding in his soul as he fought to wake her, staring into her wild, unseeing green eyes as they had jerked open, the way she had gasped as though trying to scream, though no sound had emerged.

  The terror in her eyes had drawn his animal instincts to the fore in a surge of such fury it would shock him later. Until then, he was determined to force her awake. Shaking her, holding her to him as he yelled at her, terrified he was losing her to whatever demon had control of her.

  Just as quickly as her eyes had opened, unseeing, that terror an agonizing mask that had rage surging through him, she was awake.

  Blinking, perspiration and silent tears running down her face, she parted her lips as she gasped for air. Rule could feel her nails suddenly pricking his flesh and watched as she quickly realized what had happened.

  Nightmares of the night her brother had been murdered. The night she had been abducted into the desert, where a Coyote had not just murdered her brother before her eyes, but had nearly raped her before the Breeds had arrived to make certain he never murdered another brother or tried to rape another sister.

  “My fault,” she whispered, her voice hoarse with tears as she stared up at him now, shuddering so hard he was surprised her teeth weren’t shattering. “My fault.”


  Gypsy could feel the tears that still ran from her eyes, the pain that pushed them free of her control as she was jerked from the nightmare.

  She had never been awakened by anyone while the nightmare held her in its grip. At first, because her parents hadn’t known about them. It was years before she had actually screamed through one of them. That happened only rarely. And never had they awakened her, then jerked her against them, their arms wrapping around her as Rule did now.

  Her cheek was pressed to his bare chest, tears dampening the tough skin as one hand cupped the back of her head, while the other ran comfortingly up and down her back.

  “I have you, baby,” he was whispering roughly, rocking her just a little bit. “It’s okay, Gypsy, I have you.”

  He had her?

  Her breathing hitched as she fought to get a handle on herself, to stop the tears she hadn’t shed before now.

  She wanted to push him away from her. She was angry with him, she remembered that. But she couldn’t make herself do it. No one had comforted her since Mark’s death. Not because her parents hadn’t wanted to, they had tried. Because she hadn’t deserved to escape the pain and the remembered terror.

  Because her selfishness had caused Mark’s death, and she couldn’t let herself forget that.

  But she had forgotten it.

  “Let me go.” She couldn’t let him weaken her further, but neither could she force any real demand into her voice. Because the terror was still there, lodged inside her soul and burning through her memories. A fear that drove spikes of agony tearing through her because she couldn’t make it stop. She couldn’t make the guilt and pain of that long-ago decision to disobey her brother go away.

  “It’s okay, baby,” Rule whispered, his caresses soothing, gentle, though his voice was that harsh rasp he used whenever his eyes began changing, when the animal side of his genetics began showing itself.

  “I’m okay.” But she wasn’t. It had been years since she’d had the nightmare. Of course, it had been years since she had allowed herself to sleep deeply too.

  Pushing at his chest, she tried to put some distance between them, tried to get away from the warmth of his body. Because she was suddenly no longer fighting the remnants of that nightmare. Now, she was trying to tell herself she should be fighting the arousal rising inside her. Not that her senses were paying any attention to her. They were in a free fall to ecstasy with no intention of slowing down.

  She had to get a handle on this need for him, especially in light of what she had learned the day before. She had to think, to figure out what her mother was up to and how to keep it from backlashing on the woman who had already lost one child too many.

  Besides, she couldn’t allow herself to depend on him, or to believe he’d never walk away again. He’d already walked away once.

  And showered as though he’d dirtied himself with her.

  Unfortunately, even remembering that wasn’t enough to dim the hunger driving her.

  “Would you please just let me go?” There was no way she was going to force her body not to ache for him if he didn’t stop holding her as though she would break if he weren’t careful.

  “Let you go? When I can sense your need?” he asked, that growly sound in his voice deepening to a wicked, sexual sound.

  “Sense my need, huh?” Her fingers curled against his chest, feeling beneath her touch the superfine, all-but-invisible hair that covered his body. “Is that another word for smelling it?”

  “When I say I scent it, it seems to upset you,” he murmured as his lips brushed against the bend of her neck and shoulder where he had bitten her the night before in the shower.

  “How would you like it if I could smell every emotion or reaction you have?” she questioned him roughly, her breath catching as his tongue swiped over the little wound.

  The pleasure that surged through her at the contact stole her breath. Like a thousand tiny, heated caresses over her flesh. Just hot enough to emphasize the pleasure and tighten the sexual tension already clenching with sh
arp strikes of sexual intensity at her womb while slickening the inner flesh of her pussy.

  “Hmm, that could work for me,” he breathed against her neck. “Perhaps trusting me would come easier for you then.”

  Trusting him? She had trusted him, and he’d jumped away from her to rush and shower before he’d even found his release. The fact that he’d brought her back was only due to this freaky hormone thing going on between them, not because he wanted her.

  Not with the same hunger she needed him.

  Ached for him.

  Between her thighs, her flesh was swollen, moisture easing from her, preparing her to be pierced by the thick erection she could feel against her outer thigh.

  Cupping the curves of her ass and lifting her closer, he had her legs spread and straddling his thighs between one breath and the next. Before she could evade his kiss, his lips were on hers, the spicy heat sinking inside her senses and dragging her kicking and screaming into a chaotic world of pure hunger.

  “This has to stop,” she whispered as he palmed the cheeks of her rear, lifting her against him until the hard wedge of his erection rubbed against the slick folds of her pussy and the swollen bud of her clit.

  It was almost playful, the way he moved her against him, nipping at her lips before taking deep, mind-numbing kisses. Caressing her back, along her sides, he moved his lips over her chin, urging her head back, arching her body as his kisses trailed down her neck.

  What was this?

  Gripping his forearms, she admitted it was his hands at her back that held her steady. There was no strength in her as his lips moved down her neck. It arched for him as one hand moved along her side until he cupped the swollen curve of her breast. Immediately, he found the tight, highly sensitive nipple. It was peaked, aching with the same nerve-heightened need for touch as her clit was. Hell, as the rest of her body was.

  She needed the touch of his callused fingers and hands wherever she could feel them.

  Tilting her hips closer to the poker-hot, iron-hard erection spearing up from between his thighs, Gypsy moaned in rising pleasure as his lips moved to the tops of her breasts, his tongue licking over her skin, murmuring his appreciation of her as he blazed a heated, hungry trail to the opposite nipple.

  When his lips covered the tight peak, Gypsy felt the sharp, ecstatic pulses of arousal amplifying inside her with a violent surge. It struck from her nipple to her womb, streaked to her pussy, then surrounded her clit with such a deep-seated need for his possession that it bordered pain.

  She couldn’t keep her hips still. Hell, she didn’t want to keep them still. As his lips and tongue worked her nipple into a blazing point of pleasure, she moved against him, hips lifting until the head of his cock was tucked at the weeping entrance of her sex.

  “So good,” she moaned. How could she have forgotten, between the last time he’d had her and now, how incredibly erotic it was whenever he touched her? Whenever he wanted her?

  The sensations were pleasure-pain, they were so sharp and filled with hunger.

  “That’s it, baby,” he crooned at her breast, hard hands moving to grip her hips as she began to bear down on the wide crest of his cock. “Take me, Gypsy, love. Take all of me.”


  He’d ached for this through the night. Lying beside her, allowing her to sleep, to rest from the incredible release that had swept through her body the day before, Rule had thought he’d go crazy.

  Now, he knew he was going crazy.

  Feeling her take him an inch at a time when he wanted to lunge inside her was torturous. The fiercely erect flesh was so damned sensitive that all he had to do was think about her touching it and he was ready to fuck. And blaming it all on Mating Heat was impossible. Because the Heat hadn’t begun until he’d actually taken her. Until he’d realized on some soul-deep level that he wasn’t going to let her go.

  Her hips eased up, then bore back down; the slick, hot juices filling the fist-tight depths of her cunt aided the impalement but did nothing to ease the clenched, snug grip she had on him. Her flesh milked the head of his cock, stroked the throbbing shaft and sucked at his dick until he wanted to blow immediately. His balls were drawn so tight with the need to come that he was amazed he was holding back.

  Slow and easy she took him. An inch at a time sank inside her, eased back, only to have her take him deeper. With each slow movement of her hips a little cry escaped her lips; the sound filled with her need for him, with the pleasure he was giving her.

  And he could feel her pleasure. It wrapped around every sense he possessed until he couldn’t tell where her pleasure ended and his own sensations began. He’d never known sex like this. Never known it could be like this. So fucking intimate as the pleasure buried so deep inside emotions he hadn’t known he had, until he knew he’d never survive if he lost her.

  With each thrust and impalement, each shift of her hips and broken cries that fell from her lips, Rule felt himself slipping deeper into the morass of sensations whipping over his body. Tension began to tighten his muscles as pleasure became an imperative need for release that sent heat streaking to every nerve ending in his body.

  Until he couldn’t bear it. Until the need to pound inside her, to push them both into the raging ecstasy building inside him, broke the last of the control he possessed.

  Muscles bunching, he moved quickly. Without pulling from her, he had her on her back, legs spread, silken arms and legs surrounding him as he began to fuck her with deep, hammering strokes that had them both exploding with a power that caused Rule to snarl with primitive dominance as the overpowering need to grip her neck with his teeth again, to bite and hold her in place, overtook him.

  And God, the pleasure.

  He was immersed in her.

  Her pleasure, her release and his own, in the wild chaos of a sensual storm he couldn’t hope to control. In that moment, as the barb extended, became erect and locked him inside her, he realized he was being softened by her. Changed and overtaken by this one small woman with far too many secrets.

  And he was all too aware that in too many ways, he was weakened by her.


  It was full noon before Gypsy awoke again, her senses clearer, her anger no longer simmering but fully cemented, and the independent streak that her brother had often declared was a mile wide hardened painfully inside her.

  As she opened her eyes and stared around the still-dim bedroom, the narrow shafts of sunlight that spilled from behind her reflected on the wall across from her. They were mocking reminders that the danger of losing everything she cherished was staring her in the face.

  Her choices, her ability to live as she chose, her very independence was in danger of being taken away from her. Even in the nine years that she had steadily become one of the Unknown’s best contacts, she had never endangered her life or risked her cover. She’d never had to fear her freedom or her independence.

  Until now.

  Rule had denied her the chance to leave the night before without so much as an explanation or the opportunity to argue her point. She’d seen it in his gaze. He hadn’t been willing to hear an argument, his mind was set.

  She was going nowhere.

  Gypsy was determined to show him differently at the first opportunity.

  But first, as much as it offended her pride and sense of fair play, she would have to let him think he’d won. Besides, she needed answers first. Before she escaped him, she needed to know exactly the effects she would experience once she separated herself from him.

  Exactly how factual were the gossip rags where this phenomenon was concerned?

  Staring up at the ceiling, with the sheet Rule had pulled over them sometime in the night held snugly over her breasts as the heat of his big body braced her back, she considered exactly how to broach the subject. Because she could feel the stiffness of his erection against her lower back, and the answering ache building between her thighs. And God knew she wanted nothing more than to rub against him like
a cat and feel that iron-hard flesh pressing into her and overtaking her. But a woman had to draw the line somewhere.

  “Would you like to explain to me exactly what happens there at the end?” Gypsy made certain her tone was calm, controlled.

  After all, she didn’t do hysteria very well, and learning that the far-fetched stories written in the gossip rags had a chance of being true was definite grounds for slipping into hysteria.

  Whether one was into that mode of existence or not.

  The arm lying over her waist tightened momentarily as he took a deep breath at her back. “You’ve read the damned papers,” he growled.

  “The gossip rags, you mean?” Giving a mocking, desperate little laugh, Gypsy felt her fingers tightening in the sheets. “We call them gossip rags for a reason, Rule. Because the stories in them are supposed to be lies. Remember?”

  “For the most part, they are,” he admitted, though his tone of voice was anything but relaxed or amused, as it usually was.

  “Why don’t you just tell me what I can expect,” she demanded, still and unyielding against him as she felt adrenaline beginning to gather behind the anger she was determined to keep him from sensing. “Exactly what is truth and what is lie? Because that whole orgy thing, it’s not going to work for me.”

  “There are no damned orgies.” His palm flattened at her stomach, stroking over the soft flesh as Gypsy closed her eyes and tried to tell herself that she wasn’t going to allow him to distract her.

  “Then what exactly is there?” The question was pushed from between her teeth as his fingers found the edge of intimate curls that led to the aching, swollen bundle of nerve endings throbbing below.

  “Mating Heat. What you felt as I released inside you is the mating barb. About the size of the end of a man’s thumb, it becomes erect beneath the crest of a feline Breed’s cock, and not always in the same precise location. According to our scientists, the grip of the mate’s vagina determines where it thickens, because its main purpose is to reach that little spot behind your clit, rich with erotic nerve endings.” Acceptance filled his tone, surprising her. “And just as the articles suggest, Breeds secrete a hormone from tiny glands in their tongues. Those hormones fill their mate’s system, creating an inability to hide or run from the bonds that are being built between them. It increases the arousal as well as the pleasure, and makes it impossible for the couple to be apart for long.”

  Great. Just wonderful.

  “And what happens if they’re apart?” she retorted, her thighs tightening as his touch tried to move lower.

  As if that pleasure, that temptation weren’t enough, his lips pressed to the area he had bitten into the night before, his tongue licking over the little wound with devastating results. With a liquid, brutal pleasure she couldn’t fight.

  “If they’re apart,” he whispered, his voice rasping with sensual pleasure as Gypsy felt her thighs weaken, part and give him access to the flesh his fingers were searching for, “then the arousal only increases until it’s too painful to endure. Especially for the female mate.”

  Maybe she was just trying to distract him, she told herself. She was giving him what he wanted so he would keep talking and be completely unaware of her intent to slip from the hotel later.

  “That doesn’t sound particularly fair,” she gasped as his fingers slid past her clit to find the excess dampness building between the plump folds below. “There’s no way to make it stop?”

  “Only with your mate,” he assured her. “A few have managed to bear it longer than most, but the Heat always brings them back together again, forces them to confront whatever’s held them apart and find a compromise that works for both of them.”

  “What if . . .” She gasped as those knowing, experienced fingers parted the slick folds and slid past to rub against the clenched entrance of her pussy.

  She wanted his fingers inside her, she thought desperately. Stupid, traitorous body. It was responding to him, her hips shifting, her leg lifting, guided by the broad male palm beneath her knee to rest over his as he moved lower.

  “What, baby?” His lips moved against her neck as the wide crest of his cock eased between her thighs and the tip of two powerful male fingers eased inside her—began to rub, to caress as the pleasure began tightening her body further.

  “What if there’s no compromise?” she whispered, the fear that the threat to her independence could destroy her becoming a hazy thought as his fingers reached farther inside her, filling her, increasing her hunger to be filled.

  “There’s always a compromise,” he promised.

  Her lips parted to refute that when his fingers suddenly thrust inside her, sending a shock of spiraling sensation tearing through her senses.

  A moan broke past her lips as her hips pressed into the heavy thrust, her head tipping back against his shoulder to give his lips greater access.

  “You don’t compromise, Rule,” she cried out, forcing the words into the open while his fingers began moving, fucking her with deep, even strokes. Her fingers gripped his lower arm as he pushed it beneath her head, bracing her more firmly against him, holding her steady.

  “You have no idea, Gypsy,” he groaned, his fingers sliding free of her a heartbeat before the head of his cock was pressing into the fiery heat beginning to burn inside her. “Oh baby, you simply have no idea.”

  A hard thrust of his hips and the throbbing crest lodged inside her, stretching her with exquisite fiery pleasure that bordered pain and lifted her on a rack of torture nearing ecstasy. Each withdrawal and thrust only increased the pleasure as well as the heavy presence inside her. The width of the crest made way for the heavy stalk following as he thrust inside her, slow and progressively deeper.

  The rasp of the flared head caressing oversensitive nerve endings and flesh stretched exquisitely tight around him was driving her crazy. Each thrust, each roll of his hips that caressed her inner flesh with the iron-hard crest sent rocketing flares of sharp, internal sensation streaking through her clit before it caused her womb to flex, to clench at the impending explosion she could feel building through her body.

  “God, you’re so fucking pretty,” he groaned, forcing her to lift her lashes and turn her head enough to stare up at him with only hazy awareness. “So damned pretty, Gypsy, you took my breath away the first time I saw you.”

  His blue eyes flashed, so brilliant, filled with such an inner fire as the color began to overtake the whites that a distant memory teased at her senses.

  It was gone just as quickly, another burning peak of pleasure ratcheting through her pussy and overswollen clit as it stole her breath for a precious heartbeat.

  His fingers stroked from her hip to her breasts, testing the weight of first one swollen curve before moving to the other. Lifting the one nearest him, his head lowered, his lips suddenly surrounding the painfully tight peak of a nipple as his hips surged against her, shoving the thick length of his cock inside her with a tight, controlled thrust that caressed that hidden, ultra sensitive spot high inside her pussy.

  She heard herself scream at the pleasure, unable to hold the sound back as his hips flexed, shifted, causing the pressure against that internal nerve-laden spot to increase until she was certain she would explode in climax.

  His teeth rasped her n
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