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Home > In Death #7 - Holiday in Death(9)

In Death #7 - Holiday in Death(9)
Author: J.D. Robb


“You haven’t been wearing your gloves again.”

She smiled, sliding her chilly fingers up and down the length of him. “Is that a complaint?”

“No, indeed.” His breath was clogging. Of all the women he’d known she was the only one who could leave him breathless with so little effort. He skimmed his hands up to cup her br**sts, rubbed his thumbs gently over the ni**les before unfastening the buttons of her shirt.

He wanted her under him.

“Come to bed.”

“What’s wrong with here?” She lowered her head, bit his shoulder. “What’s wrong with now?”

“Not a thing.” This time he moved fast, hooking a foot behind hers to throw her off balance, then tumbling with her to the floor. “But I’ve a mind to take you instead of the other way around.”

His mouth clamped on her breast, sucking hard. Words strangled in her throat, images exploded in her brain, and her hips arched to him.

He knew her, better, he often thought, than she knew herself. She needed heat, the potent flood of it, to drown out whatever was troubling her mind. Heat he could give her, and he would pleasure them both with wave after wave.

She was thin. The weight she’d lost during her recovery couldn’t be spared on her slim frame and had yet to be put back in place. But he knew she didn’t want gentle strokes now. So he drove her, ruthlessly, relentlessly, until her breath was ragged and her heart slammed against his seeking mouth and hands.

She writhed under him, her hands in his hair fisted tight, her br**sts bared for him with the long tear-shaped diamond he’d once given her resting in the shallow valley between.

He licked his way down her torso, over ribs, along the firm, flat belly, scraping teeth against the narrow line of hip as she began to buck. He tugged her trousers lower, exposing the soft curls between her thighs.

When he swept his tongue over her, into her, the orgasm struck like a lightning bolt. Blood pumped under her skin, brought a dew of sweat to the surface. She was half in, half out of the closet, surrounded by the scent of him, trapped in it and glorying.

She felt his fingers dig into her hips, lifting her, spreading her, taking her. Her own helpless moan echoed as he urged her up again. And flying, there was nothing left inside her but the driving need to mate.

She reached for him, panting his name as her hands slid off his shoulders, around his back, as her legs lifted to hook around his waist.

He glided into her, one smooth stroke of homecoming. His body shuddered once as she tightened around him, trapped him as she was trapped. His mouth crushed down on hers, feeding there as her hips began to pump.

Fast and hard, with their eyes on each other now. Thrust, retreat, and thrust, breathing each other’s air. Closer, still closer with the good, solid slap of flesh against flesh.

She watched his eyes go opaque an instant before he rammed himself home. Her body erupted, shattered beneath his. When he lowered his head, pressed his face to her throat, she once more turned hers into his hair. Once more breathed in his scent.

“It’s good to be home,” he murmured.

She had her shower, her glass of wine, then what she considered the ultimate in decadence: dinner in bed with her husband.

“Tell me about it.” He waited until she’d relaxed, until she’d eaten. Now he poured her another glass of wine and watched the shadows come back into her eyes.

“I don’t want to bring my work home.”

“Why not?” He smiled, refilled his own glass. “I do.”

“It’s different.”

“Eve.” He skimmed a finger over the slight dent in her chin. “We are, both of us, very much defined by what we do for a living. You don’t — you can’t leave your work outside the door any more than I can. It’s inside you.”

She leaned back against the pillows, looked up through the sky window at the dark winter sky. And told him.

“It was cruel,” she said at length. “But that’s not it, really. I’ve seen things that were more cruel. She was innocent — there was something about her space, her walk, about her face, I don’t know, but she had an innocence. I know that’s not really it, either. Innocence is often destroyed. I know what it’s like — not to be innocent; I don’t remember being innocent. But I know what it’s like to be destroyed.”

She cursed under her breath and set the wine aside.

“Eve.” He took her hand, waiting until she turned her gaze to his. “A rape-murder might not be the best way for you to get back into active duty.”

“I might have passed on it.” It shamed her to admit it, enough that she looked away again. “If I’d known, I’m not sure I would have taken the call.”

“You can still pass it to someone else in your division. No one would blame you for it.”

“I’d blame me. I’ve seen her now. I know her now.” Eve closed her eyes, but only for a moment. “She’s mine now. I can’t turn my back on that.”

Eve pushed at her hair, ordered herself to focus. “She looked so surprised and happy when she opened the door. Like a kid might. Oh boy, a present. You know?”

“Yes.”

“The way the bastard looked at the camera before he went in. The big smile, the cagey little wink. And after, doing his victory dance into the elevator.”

Her eyes fired up as she spoke of it, as she shoved herself straighter in the bed. Not just cop’s eyes now, Roarke thought. But the avenging angel.

“There was no passion, just sheer delight.” She closed her eyes again, bringing that image back, clearly, and when she opened them again, the fire was banked, smoldering deep. “It made me sick.”

Annoyed with herself, she picked up the wine again, sipped once. “I had to tell the parents. I had to watch their faces when I did. And Vandoren, watching him go to pieces, seeing him try to understand that his world had just fallen apart. She was a nice woman, a nice simple woman who was happy in her life, about to get engaged, and she opens the door to someone who’s symbolically a figure of innocence. Now she’s dead.”

Because he knew her, he took her hand, unballing the fist she’d made. “It doesn’t make you less of a cop because it touches you.”

“Too many of them touch you and the edges get blurred. You get closer to the limit, to the time you know you’re not going to be able to face another of the dead.”

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