A blissful wedding night has led to Nem becoming more adventurous, more seductive and, importantly, more comfortable in his relationship with Thommas. But the specter of the mission remains. When Iptak returns with information, will it spell disaster for their newfound happiness?
Find out, in Chapter 18 of The One That Feels!
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I woke, exhausted, head buried in a pillow. My arm searched the bed for my mate, but Nem had gone. It was this realization more than anything that woke me. Waking and finding him gone. I groaned as my eyes adjusted to the light that filtered in through the windows. I shifted in the bed, pushing and pulling and shifting pillows until I was upright and seated. Our clothes were still there, mine in a pile on the floor, Nem’s neatly arranged on the back of a chair.
I took a long deep breath and called out. “Nem?”
The door to the living area where we’d had our ceremony opened, and Nem stepped into the door frame, leaning casually against it. My breath caught as I looked at him, wearing only a narrow bit of silk that covered his privates and hugged tightly to his ass. His hair had been pulled free from the braids, and it hung loose around his face. He smiled at me and mouthed the words “I love you” before moving to the bed and sitting on the edge. He stroked my face gently and then leaned over to kiss me on the forehead.
I returned his smile and took hold of one of his hands, bringing the back of it to my lips and kissing it tenderly. “I missed you,” I whispered in soft breaths against his skin.
“I’m sorry. Iptak came with news. I tried to wake you, but when you... you looked so peaceful, so I let you sleep.”
“He had news?” I asked.
Nem nodded. “It’s timely,” he said, “but not so much that we can’t enjoy a shower and breakfast. He’s bringing us some proper clothes and checking on a few things. There’s time”—his eyes flicked downward and he blushed—“for us to shower. Together, I mean.”
I smiled and with a swift movement pulled Nem onto the bed and rolled on top of him. He groaned at the sudden weight, but there was a grin on his face, and the tremble felt more of anticipation than fear.
He nodded. “And I want this,” he said, thrusting his hips against mine, “but in the shower.”
I slid my hands down his body to tease underneath the silk. “I love that you wore them,” I said. There was heat in my cheeks, and I knew he could see the redness, but I wanted him to know. “I love that you do this to me. Make me want you.”
He waggled his eyebrows playfully, then leaned up to kiss me. “Shower,” he said firmly. “After last night, I’m sure you need it as much as I do.”
He was right about that. I grunted and leaned my forehead against his, letting myself breathe in that same intimate space as he was. His breath was sweet and minty, and I envied him that he’d woken earlier. But as rank as I’m sure my own breath must have been, he didn’t shy away. His hands rested gently on my hips, his eyes closed, and his body trembled. I kissed him, full and open-mouthed, an assault I tried to fill with my passion and desire for him—with my want to forget everything and spend the day with him, alone, in this bed.
He responded to the kiss eagerly, rolling about the bed, our hands roaming against each other, our bodies flush and tight and hot. My hands found his wrists and I pushed them down and held him as he wriggled anxiously against me. “I love this,” I said, very quietly.
He smiled and stilled. “Shower,” he repeated.
“But I want to....”
“So do I,” he said, wrapping his legs around my waist and pulling me tight against him, “in the shower.”
I smiled and released him, snapping the waist of the silk briefs against his skin. His arousal had the silk pressed tight against him, and it was beautiful. My hand sought the long cylinder of his masculinity and squeezed. It twitched against my hand, and I could feel the slick wet of the silk that spoke to just how aroused and ready Nem was. “I want this.”
He smiled as he sat up, pulling me up with him. Gently, he kissed me. “Take it then. Just as soon,” he said, stilling my movements with a firm hand, “as we’re in the shower.” Then he slipped free of my grasp and ran for the shower. As soon as he disappeared through the door, the silk briefs sailed through the air to land, a bit of wrinkled fabric loose by the entrance.
I shivered. This was mine. He was mine. I surged from the bed and followed him to the shower. And I feasted my eyes upon the flesh he’d given only to me as the water began to run and cover us. Nem leaned his head back, letting the water run down the whole of his body and I couldn’t help the desperate whimper that escaped from me. This beautiful man was mine from the crown of his antlers to the glory of his flawless skin. My lips descended upon his, and my hands tangled in his hair, and my hips moved against his, seeking and owning his flesh in wanton hunger.
Nem’s legs wrapped around my waist, his hands locking around my neck as the sudden weight forced me to lean him against the wall of the shower. His voice was hot and breathy and sexy. “I’m ready for you,” he said, his hips wriggling to position my cock within the crease of his ass. I felt the slickness immediately. Hot and oily and wet.
He was... he had... “Ohhh Nem,” I moaned as I pushed inside him, pushed deep. I pressed my lips against him hard, still moaning his name into the lips that were holding just as desperately to me, and I pulled out and pushed in hard.
“Thooommaaas!” he screamed, his lips pulling away from mine.
My hands sought for the curve of his ass, pulling and holding him up against the wall, and then I moved, oh, how I moved, in and out, so deep, so hard, so desperate. Nem’s body folded and tucked itself between my chest and the wall, his lips managing somehow to reach my neck, to reach his mark and then I was the one screaming. I gave him what I wanted, what we needed. His body was mine, only mine and I told him so, screaming, demanding, begging, pleading that he be mine forever. And he answered me, so sweetly he gave his assent, as my body moved inside him, coaxing him into ecstasy thrust by desperate sweaty thrust, until he came, his cock blossoming with hot, sticky sweetness that pressed between our stomachs.
I couldn’t last. As he came his whole body tightened, and with it the tight ring around my cock, and I too lost my battle to last. My body exploded in a rush of thick heat rushing out my cock and into Nem, my Nem. I managed to plant my legs firmly before I entered that boneless weariness that followed. Enough that I was able to slide Nem against the wall of the shower until he got to his feet.
He was the one that held me up after that, as the ecstasy of his body overwhelmed me. He held me, and then he washed me, slowly, carefully, until my muscles regained their strength and I held him with desperate giggles and smiles and kissed him sweetly a hundred times and basked in the sweetness of our combined joy. He wanted me. He needed me. And I was his.
I washed his silvery hair carefully, lovingly, luxuriating at the togetherness our little illusion of domesticity gave me. I’d missed this. Washing the hair of someone who trembled from being touched by me, because they wanted and needed the touch so badly. Hands roaming soapy against a smooth, warm back. Hands wrapping against hips to pull us together for moments of closeness under the water. Lips finding lips and sputtering as we misjudged the spray of the shower. Laughing together.
We finished and stepped from the shower into another joy, toweling each other carefully dry. Iptak had arrived and left our clothes on the bed, which had been made, my discarded wedding clothes carefully pressed, cleaned, and hung next to Nem’s. The clothes on the bed were new and fashionable for the realm, I had no doubt. I dressed quickly and smiled when Nem got my attention to make sure I saw him slipping on a new pair of slinky silk briefs. I shuddered and smiled, and tried to convey with my expression everything I wanted to do with him and to him at that moment, and the twinkle in his eye suggested I had succeeded.
When we returned to the small living area, Iptak was waiting, seated. He got to his feet when Nem entered, returning to his seat only when Nem had taken his. I sat next to Nem, my hand reaching for his, clasping our hands together.
“You had news for us?” asked Nem.
The goblin nodded anxiously, his fear of Nem obvious. Goblins must not be treated particularly well in Zaharoth.
“Is lookings for thisss boy, this prince of blood. Is findings him, I thinks.”
“Where?” I asked quickly.
“Is findings, but is no good. Is to be gift to Rakibak, gift to be usings. Gift to be takings.” The goblin shuddered. “Is feelings much of sadness for boy, caught in thisss. Is well Rakibak is not knowings of princely blood.”
“He knows,” I growled. “He has to know.”
The hand in mine squeezed. “Iptak, where is he?”
“In palace of Duchess. Beautiful boy, but dazed as wanderingggsss in the night of the sssoul.”
“But where?” I asked desperately.
“Is with ssslaves is findingggsss. Is in dungeonsss below. Waiting to be gifted with no understandingggsss. Lost boy.”
Nem cursed. “There’s no way, Thommas. They are the best....”
He was right. The best guarded of the realm. I knew it, because the protections were mine. As Guardian of Garuth, it had been my task, my right. And I’d done my work well. I hung my head.
“Is good to be abandoningggsss. Is not worth—”
I stood up. “No.”
“But sirs, is not to be doingggsss anythings....”
“No,” I repeated. “I promised him, Nem. That I would....”
“What can you do?” asked Nem.
“I can get him out,” I said quietly. “And I will. I promised him, Nem.”
Nem choked back a sob. “I can’t lose you.”
I leaned down and kissed Nem rather seriously and then rested my forehead against his, the top of my head butting up against the graceful line of his antlered crown. “We are one.”
He grasped my hands, tightly, desperately. “One.”
“If I am not back in two days, go to the Duchess and ask for me. I am your mate, it is your right.”
“Please, Thommas, don’t. We can find another way.”
I glanced at the goblin. “How much time do we have?”
“Is no way to be knowingggsss, but not much. Boy is much lost, fraying around edgesss, and Rakibak is being anxious to be owningggsss.”
I grumbled a curse under my breath. “Nem.”
I didn’t hear him stand up, but I felt Nem press against my side. “I am yours, my Nem,” I said as he leaned his head against my shoulder.
“They’ll kill you, Thommas.”
“No. That is not what Rakibak requires of them.” I leaned my head against his. “Sweet Nem, do not worry for me. This is Garuth, and I am the Guardian. I am not without power.”
“The Duchess has exiled you from her sight,” he hissed.
“And right now, that is the only route I have into the dungeons to find Jordan.”
“Please don’t leave me.”
I turned to Nem. “I could never leave you. This is for us, that we can be together. With this I pay all debts and promises to Brian, leaving only my promise to you. To live here, to be your mate, to love you with the strength of my heart and feel you always.”
“To be only mine,” he said. “You are only mine.”
I pressed a hand against his heart. “Forever.”