Just one touch, p.14
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       Just One Touch, p.14
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         Part #5 of Slow Burn series by Maya Banks
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  nipple further into his mouth.

  “When I get between your legs, I want you to wrap them around my waist and hold on to my shoulders, okay, baby? Can you do that for me?” he asked tenderly.

  She nodded, her eyes wide.

  “You’re ready for me, sweetheart. Your body is ready. You’re so wet and hot, so very soft and silky,” he murmured.

  At his reassuring words, she relaxed, her body going limp against the bed.

  He guided his erection between her legs and rubbed the tip up and down her satiny flesh until it was coated in her moisture. He pressed the head to her tiny opening, pushing in the tiniest amount just so the head was lodged there, freeing his hand to do other things.

  He lowered his body onto hers, covering her as he propped himself on one forearm so he didn’t smother her. He used his other hand to delve between them and he began to caress her clit, pressing against it and rolling it in a circular motion.

  She curled her legs around his waist as he’d asked her to and she clamped down tightly each time he toyed with her clit. Her head was thrown back, her chest thrust upward and he’d never seen a more beautiful, erotic sight in his life.

  “Hold on baby,” he whispered. “I’ll try to make this first part fast.”

  She opened her eyes, confused by his words.

  “I love you,” he said. “I’ll always love you.”

  Then he thrust forward, hard and deep, rending the fragile barrier that proclaimed her innocence. She cried out, tears shimmering in her eyes as she gripped his shoulders. His heart damn near split in two when a tear trickled down the side of her face to disappear into her hair.

  “I’m sorry, baby,” he said, his chest aching as he lowered his mouth to kiss her. “I’m so damn sorry I hurt you. I wouldn’t hurt you for anything in the world. Just stay still. I won’t move until the pain goes away and then I’ll make you feel good again. I swear it. Please forgive me,” he pleaded.

  She caressed his face with one hand and smiled tremulously up at him. “I know you didn’t mean to hurt me, Isaac. It just took me by surprise, that’s all. Will it be like that every time? I mean when you first get inside?”

  She fidgeted with discomfort over asking such an intimate question and he had to kiss her again.

  “No, baby, I promise. It’ll never hurt like that again. You were a virgin and the first time with a man is often painful because I have to break through your hymen. But it’s gone now and from now on, you’ll feel nothing but pleasure.”

  Even as he reassured her, his fingers were on her clit, stroking and pressing. He could feel her body contracting and tightening around him and he could feel her bathe his dick with a flood of arousal.

  She tentatively flexed around him, the walls of her pussy gripping him tightly. He groaned and closed his eyes, clamping his teeth together.

  “Have mercy, baby,” he said in a pained voice. “If you keep doing that, I’m going to come way too soon and it will be all over with.”

  She smiled and then arched upward, suddenly taking more of him inside her.

  He swore and tried to withdraw but she clamped her legs tighter around his waist, preventing him from doing any such thing.

  “It doesn’t hurt as much,” she said shyly. “I feel so . . . tingly. I need you to move. I want you to move.”

  With more restraint than he would have ever attributed to himself, he eased forward until just two inches of him remained outside of her opening. Then he pulled back, moaning as she rippled and fluttered tightly over his erection. When he was nearly all the way out, only the head remaining inside her, he pushed forward more forcefully, seating himself as deeply as he could.

  Her eyes went wide at the sensation and her legs trembled violently around him, her heels digging into his back.

  “Please,” she begged. “I need . . . I don’t know what I need,” she said in frustration.

  “I know what you need, baby,” he said lovingly. “Hold on to me tight.”

  As soon as her legs and arms were around his body, he began to thrust harder and faster, planting himself deep before retreating only to do it all over again. He could no longer hold back, no longer measure his thrusts. He began moving faster and faster, his hips slapping against her ass as he reached maximum depth, every inch of his dick bathed in her heat.

  Sweat broke out on his forehead and strain was evident in her expression.

  “I need you to come for me,” Isaac said through gritted teeth. “Let go, Jenna. Let it happen.”

  His thumb pressed more firmly against her clit and as he rolled it harder and faster, he lowered his head to suck her nipple into his mouth, using his teeth to add a tiny spark of pain.

  It was all she needed. Her eyes shot to his and her mouth opened in a soundless cry. Her body tensed to the point she almost appeared as though she were in pain. Just when he knew he couldn’t last even another stroke, he was surrounded by a sudden surge of hot, silken release.

  He roared her name and then buried his face in her neck as he thrust himself as deeply into her body as possible. His release surged painfully, shooting from his dick into her warm, inviting haven. Never had he come so much in his life. He could feel it leaking from inside her, smeared on the inside of her thighs and the outside of his.

  And never had he felt so damn satisfied—so complete—in his entire life. He’d found home. She was his home. Not a place, not a house. But her. His angel. Wherever she was, as long as he was with her, he was home.

  NINETEEN

  JENNA awoke sprawled across Isaac’s body and she sleepily glanced up to see if he was awake. To her surprise, he was staring intently down at her and he slid his hand up her back in an intimate caress.

  “We need to get up so I can feed you,” he said, his eyes still glittering with heat.

  She yawned sluggishly and wrapped her arm around his waist to hold him closer.

  “I’m not hungry. Can’t we just stay in bed?” she asked in a pouty tone.

  He chuckled and kissed the top of her head. “Baby, we haven’t left this room in three days. You have to be starving.”

  She lifted her head and stared at him aghast. “Three days?”

  His grin grew bigger, a cocky lilt to his lips. “I’m not surprised you lost track of time—after all, I did keep you pretty busy. I was pretty hard on you,” he said, his grin fading as concern touched his eyes.

  She blushed self-consciously but sent him a dazzling smile. “I wouldn’t call what you did being too hard on me. Besides, I think I likely wore you out as much as you wore me out.”

  He laughed and tweaked her nose affectionately. “You definitely won’t hear me complaining, sweetheart. But you do need to shower and then eat, and I need to check in with the others before someone decides to check to see if we’re still alive.”

  Panic seized her and she scrambled from the bed, searching desperately for her clothing. She’d die of mortification if anyone walked in on them naked in bed. But Isaac caught her hand and pulled her back down to him and kissed her long and hard, causing her to forget all about anyone else.

  “I was teasing you, baby. They know damn well if they even tried to come in here, I’d cut their balls off. No one sees what’s mine. No one will ever see what belongs to me from now on.”

  His words made her glow, her chest squeezing with absolute contentment and so much love that she couldn’t even process the bombardment of emotions he made her feel.

  “You really mean that, don’t you?”

  He frowned at her, his eyes searching her entire expression. “Clearly I didn’t do a good enough job convincing you. Maybe I need another three days in bed with you until you see the light and fully understand that you are mine, Jenna. You belong to me and I belong to you. I don’t joke about something like that. There’s never been another woman I’ve even come close to saying those words to. Only you. It will always be only you.”

  “I’m going, I’m going!” she said, laughing. Then her tone turned
rueful. “I’m not sure I’ll be able to walk to the shower.”

  He gave her a look that suggested she was crazy for even contemplating walking and then simply picked her up and carried her to the bathroom.

  “Who said you’d be walking? After the scare you gave me I’m not going to want to let you out of my sight. Hell, I want you in touching distance at all times because I plan to do a lot of touching. I have no discipline when it comes to you,” he muttered.

  “You act as if that’s a bad thing,” she teased.

  Her long, leisurely shower had her so hot and bothered that she wanted to haul him back to bed to satisfy the burning desire he’d built into an inferno. But he helped her from the shower and then dried her very thoroughly with a towel. He even brushed out the mass of tangled hair that was the result of their marathon of making love before he gave her a pat on the ass and told her to dress.

  They finally left the room and headed for the kitchen, where Isaac deposited her on one of the stools at the island with instructions not to move while he made their breakfast. Jenna was self-conscious, knowing that the men were in the next room and knew full well what she and Isaac had spent the last three days doing.

  She kept her head down, twisting her fingers together, and peeked in the direction of the living room several times from the corner of her eye.

  Isaac placed a plate in front of her that was heaped with so much food that she had no hope of eating it all, but being allowed to have anything other than the vegetables she’d eaten for so long was a luxury she still savored.

  “Relax, baby,” Isaac said in a low voice. “No one will say a damn thing, and they’d never do anything to embarrass you.”

  She nodded, feeling stupid for being so worried. Isaac’s teammates had been nothing but solicitous of her and not once had she gotten the impression that they’d ever do anything to make her feel uncomfortable.

  She examined each offering on the plate in giddy delight. Never had she been offered so much food and so many delicious-smelling—and looking—kinds of food in her life. She realized she was smiling like an idiot when her cheeks actually began to ache, but she simply couldn’t contain her delight at the new experience and the freedom to eat—or not eat—whatever she wanted.

  When she’d fully examined every different food on her plate, she picked up her fork and for a moment paused, her brow furrowing as she stared down at the banquet he’d simply called a meal. Which one did she want to try first? Not one of them had an unappealing smell or appearance, though she had no clue what any of it was. Embarrassment flooded her and heat crept up her neck and into her cheeks. Even a child could identify the different dishes Isaac had prepared, surely. She suddenly wasn’t as delighted by the new experience as she had been a few moments ago.

  Feeling eyes watching her, she glanced up without lifting her head, instead peeking from underneath her lashes to see Isaac regarding her with so much sadness that her embarrassment made her faintly nauseous, and she suddenly lost any desire to eat.

  Refusing to look up, she subtly pushed the plate forward and stared down at the fork she still held, wishing there were a hole that would just swallow her up.

  “Baby, eat,” Isaac said, his voice holding a gentle ache to it. As if he hurt for her.

  She closed her eyes and just a second later, she felt Isaac slide onto the stool next to her, his heat enfolding her in its embrace.

  “Honey, you have nothing to be embarrassed about,” he said, sincerity echoing solidly in his tone, and when she got up the courage to glance up at him, she saw the same absolute sincerity etched in every line of his face.

  “I wanted you to have the opportunity to try several new things,” he explained. “It’s why I made such a variety. You’ll learn what you do and don’t like, and that’s information I need to know so that I don’t ever serve you something that doesn’t taste good to you.”

  She looked at him, appalled and confused at the same time. “You don’t care if I don’t like something you cooked for me? But it would be so rude for me to not appreciate something you put such an effort into.”

  She glanced nervously back at the plate. The idea of not liking something he’d cooked for her when he’d gone to such lengths to please her filled her with dread.

  Isaac sighed and then curled his hand around her knee, swinging her around on the stool to face him. He tipped her chin up with his finger so that their eyes met.

  “Baby, everyone has foods they love and foods they absolutely despise and wouldn’t eat under any circumstances. It’s called being human and being an individual. No two people like the exact same things. I want you to love what you eat every single time we sit down to have a meal and in order for that to happen, we have to experiment with foods until you have a good grasp of what you like, what you don’t like and what you love, as in your absolute favorites. You’ll learn I have my own share of foods I wouldn’t touch with a ten-foot pole.”

  “Really?” she asked hopefully. “You won’t be mad at me if I don’t like something you cooked for me?”

  “I will never—listen to me very closely, baby—I will never be angry at you for being honest with me. What I would be angry over is if you kept eating something you absolutely hated because you were afraid to tell me you didn’t like it.”

  He grinned and tweaked her nose. “I already know not to serve you vegetables or I’ll end up having to sleep on the couch.”

  She blinked in surprise and then realizing that he was teasing her, she laughed, relief spilling over into her amusement.

  “Now, will you please eat whatever you want and leave whatever you don’t want?”

  Feeling more than a little bit silly after his explanation, she nodded and then eagerly reached for the plate, pulling it in front of her. She sampled each of the different items, taking a single bite with her fork from them all, taking in the tastes and textures, what tasted the best and what was the least appetizing to her.

  She pointed in turn to each of the foods she’d sampled, giving Isaac her rating, her favorite being the fluffy, buttery biscuits. The scrambled eggs were an either/or for her, but bacon was absolutely decadent and she ate every single piece on her plate. She frowned at the grits as she rubbed the grainy mixture around her mouth, deciding she had no interest in ever eating it again. The pan-fried ham was delicious and the fresh fruit, she devoured, licking the juice from her fingers so as not to miss a single drop.

  When she’d eaten her fill, she pushed her plate back with a heavy sigh of contentment. “I’m stuffed,” she groaned. “And I need to make another trip to the bathroom.”

  Isaac took her plate and dropped a kiss on her upturned lips. “Hurry back to me.”

  She smiled and walked out of the kitchen toward the bedroom she and Isaac had occupied.

  Isaac was rinsing the dishes when Shadow called to him from the doorway dividing the kitchen and living room.

  “You need to see this, brother,” he said in a low voice, sliding his eyes in the direction Jenna had disappeared in a silent message that it was something she didn’t need to see.

  But Jenna walked in at just the moment Shadow spoke and saw the look sent in her direction. Shadow’s lips thinned, and it was obvious he was cursing under his breath. He sent Isaac a look of apology.

  “What is it?” Jenna asked sharply, fear replacing her earlier sparkle and laughter.

  Isaac cursed at the sudden change.

  “You can’t shield me from everything,” Jenna said softly.

  “The hell I can’t!” he bellowed.

  A look of defiance sparked in her eyes. “Whatever it is can’t hurt me. We’re here and they’re somewhere else. Watching something on a television can’t hurt anyone. Only people can hurt people and they have to be captured in order to be hurt. I get that I’m dumb and ignorant and hopelessly naïve, but how can I ever expect to learn the things I need to know if you are all determined to keep me locked away where I don’t see anything disturbing? I need to know
what’s going on. The only time I’m afraid is when I don’t know what’s happening,” she said in a pleading voice.

  “You are not dumb and ignorant and you are not naïve, and I won’t put up with you constantly putting yourself down or convincing yourself that you’re less than everyone else. That you’re nobody and nobody cares for you,” he said fiercely.

  “Damn it, Jenna, you’ve been isolated from the world since you were four years old. No one would expect you to learn everything in a few days, which is why we’re protecting you and helping you gain the knowledge you need, but you have to be willing to let us do our job and listen when we tell you what you need to do in order to be able to protect yourself as well.”

  “We have a few minutes,” Shadow said calmly. “There’s a commercial break right now and when the newscast returns they’re going with the lead story.” He leveled his stare at Jenna, giving her a chin lift in respect. “It’s your decision. Just make it quick.”

  Even though he knew Shadow was right and that Isaac couldn’t continue to treat her like she would fall apart at any sign of adversity, it still pissed him off that he couldn’t shield her from pain and anguish, and he knew it showed in his expression and tense body language.

  Jenna’s expression became troubled and she frowned. Her lips trembled and it was obvious she was fighting back tears. Fuck. He hadn’t meant to upset her or hurt her feelings, but he was at a complete loss as to how to convince her that she was far from nothing. That she was important, and that she was everything to him. She was the reason he breathed, that he got up in the morning and for the first time since she’d stolen his heart and made it her own forever, didn’t simply go through the motions of the day. Instead he savored every single moment with her, allowing himself something he’d never dreamed of being capable of having. Hope. Excitement for the future. Spending the rest of his life killing himself just so she’d keep smiling and be happy. For too long his life had been consumed by shadows and darkness, concealed places he didn’t dare delve into for fear of unleashing painful memories and allowing all the mistakes he’d made to pour out. Because once he did, there was no going back. He would have had to walk away from everything he knew and the people who’d embraced him as family because he wouldn’t have been able to look them in the eye and pretend that everything was all right. Perfect. Just another day like all the others.

  It had taken him months to quit the bottle and sober up and then another year to work his body back into shape, eat the right foods or even eat at all. That had enabled him to do his job because he had become very adept at being aloof and unaffected, concealing his emotions and keeping any telling information from his face. But however good he’d gotten at fooling not just others but himself as well when he was on the job, the nights were an altogether different matter.

  It was then, in unguarded, vulnerable moments, that the nightmares crept in, searching for the slightest crack in the barriers of his mind so they could pour insidiously into his dreams, smug and victorious, always making him feel like a shell of a person. A fraud, because he spent his days pretending and his nights reliving events that had broken him in a way that had taken him a very long time to recover from. And he still hadn’t managed to piece himself back together completely. He knew because he still had nightmares that jerked him up in bed, sweat soaking his skin from head to toe and his heart pounding so furiously that at times he feared he was having a heart attack. They just weren’t as frequent as they had been.

  And yet with one touch, Jenna had healed not only the gaping wound in his chest that would have killed him in minutes, maybe seconds, but she had also done the impossible by filling his heart and soul with so much light, sunshine and sweetness that for a moment, he truly thought he had died and gone to heaven. Despite his past sins.

  But most of all she’d given him a reprieve from years of constantly staggering beneath the unbearable weight of grief, blame and guilt that was never forgotten or forgiven. He hadn’t allowed himself to be free, hadn’t tried to forget or forgive because it was his penance, one he deserved. And in the place of all the pain and remorse he’d lived with for so long, Jenna had gifted him the most precious thing he’d ever been given, second only to her love, trust and her innocence. Absolution. Freedom from a lifetime of self-condemnation and self-hatred.

  Somehow she’d removed every single one of the ugly, dark voids that he’d buried so deep in an effort to hide them from even himself so he could pretend they weren’t there until they came roaring to the surface with a vengeance. She filled them with an angelic light so bright it could never be covered or disguised. It was simply so large a part of her that it spilled from her, encompassing and overtaking everything she focused her gift on. Natural and effervescent, just like her sparkling eyes and long blond hair that slid down her back in a mass of unruly curls. She’d done the impossible, sealing his gaping wounds on the inside so they would never be raw, painful or exposed again in a single moment of weakness and vulnerability.

  She’d given him a miracle he was too ashamed to ask or pray for. Something he was desperate for, if only for a moment, even when he knew he didn’t deserve it.

  Peace.

  The kind of peace that couldn’t be wiped away in a moment of guilt when his past came back to haunt him. It was a permanent part of him now, every bit as much as she was a permanent part—the very best part—of everything he was. Even now he ached just remembering the beauty of that moment. As soon as she’d touched him there was no separation. Their hearts and souls had recognized one another and in that brief second when time seemed to stop, they’d been truly connected in a way Isaac had never been connected to another human being. Heart, soul and mind, closer than any two people could ever possibly be. He didn’t believe for a moment that any other two people were capable of sharing something as inexplicable as the kind of bond that had instantly and irrevocably formed between him and Jenna.

  And because she’d healed more than just the physical wounds he’d incurred and brought light back into a world that had been dark to him for so long, he hadn’t had a single nightmare since finding her and bringing her home to him, knowing—and fully admitting to himself—that no other woman would ever own every single piece of his heart and soul like she did—and always would. If he ever lost her—fuck, it hurt to even entertain that thought—he’d never look at another woman again. She was his. Every inch of her body was his, and though she may have thought he was teasing, he’d been completely serious. He’d tie her to his bed in a heartbeat if he ever thought she’d try to leave him again.

  Shadow cleared his throat in a not very subtle way and sent Isaac a pointed glare. “Daydream later when your attention isn’t needed on the very serious matter we have on our hands.”

  Isaac glanced at Jenna, seeing trepidation in her eyes, but most pronounced
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