This title is in transition.
©2007 Jet Mykles, all rights reserved
Intoxicating warmth stole over her body. Dark and featureless, it crept through her muscles, creating an odd, languid restlessness. She stirred, pushing off the light blanket that covered her. The fabric of her dress irritated her sensitive skin, especially her breasts. Her thighs pressed together over a warmth that pulsed through her groin. She opened her mouth to pull in more air when breathing through her nose wasn’t enough. Her back twisted, arched a little. She moaned softly, yearning, wanting…
Her eyes opened, tossing her from sleep.
Above her, shining white moonlight surrounded pitch-black darkness and glittering black eyes.
Gasping, she shrank back, her confused brain trying to make sense of what she was seeing.
White. White hair, straight and glimmering like spun moonlight. Black. Black skin, glossy and shining where the sparse light caressed it. A face, long and thin and all of the same unrelieved, glossy black except for the whites of two glittering eyes and white eyebrows and eyelashes to match the straight hair.
“Hello, lovely,” said one of the most deliciously dark voices Marisol had ever heard.
Dark denizens of the forest…
She opened her mouth to scream, but a large hand clapped over her mouth. The back of her skull pressed against the rolled blanket beneath her head. She could now feel the press of legs about her hips as this strange man pinned her to the bed of the wagon where she slept.
“None of that,” chided the voice, the mouth it came from curving into a wicked smile that showed white teeth.
How had he gotten into the wagon without waking her? What was he? She struggled, making a claw with her finger and raking it toward his face. He caught her wrist with his free hand and squeezed with a firm, unbreakable grip.
He raised an eyebrow, shaking his head at her. “Now, now. Hurting you is not our intention. Don’t give us a reason.”
Us? Geriman! She screamed her brother’s name behind the hand on her mouth.
A sound to the right, and her assailant raised his head, turning toward it. It was then that she saw one ear that held back his hair. It was delicately pointed at the tip. An elf? But the legends told of elves with milky pale skin, not blackest black. And weren’t all elves from the eastern countries? What was he doing here far to the west?
The noise to the right sounded like a voice, and she rolled her eyes to see another man, equally dark-skinned, at the side of the wagon. They spoke in a language she didn’t understand, the sound of which seemed to seep into her bones, making her want to relax beneath the man straddling her.
They spoke for a moment, then ended their conversation. The one at the side of the wagon glanced down at her. He grinned and waggled his thick white eyebrows, then hopped back and out of sight.
She screamed Geriman’s name again behind the hand on her mouth. What had they done to her brother?
“Relax, lovely,” crooned the man above her, his attention back on her. “Your man’s still alive. For now.” He leaned in until his breath was a warm gust on her cheek. “Is he your husband?”
A quiver of delight spilled down her neck despite her panic. “My brother,” she gasped when the hand slid away, the edge of his palm hovering over her chin. “Don’t hurt him! Where is he? What do you want?”
The dark look in his eyes made the answer to her last question abundantly clear. What she didn’t understand was her body’s reaction. Instead of fear or rage chilling her blood, something deep in her belly boiled, making her squirm for an entirely different reason.
The man slid his fingers along her jaw. The scent of him filled her like the mellow burn from a warm, exotic wine, and she fought to keep her eyes from fluttering closed in pure, hedonistic pleasure. “He’ll be fine if he cooperates,” assured that darkly beguiling voice. A lock of shimmering white hair escaped its place behind his ear and fell forward to caress her temple. “The same holds for you.”
“Wait…” She tried to turn her face aside from the lips closing in on hers. She pushed up against his chest, finding it bare and warm, satiny between the supple lapels of the leather vest he wore.
His fingers gripped her chin, turning her back.
She gasped into the kiss.
Spicy sweet heat poured into her at the first taste of the tongue that pushed through her lips, as richly decadent as the smell of him. He explored the contours of her mouth, languidly chasing her tongue with his.
“Stop,” she breathed when he pulled back.
He smiled, hovering over her. His hands went to the ones she had clutching his soft leather vest. When had she done that? “Only for now, lovely,” he assured her, prying her fingers from his garment. Chuckling, he sat back and quickly looked around. Apparently satisfied with what he saw, he gripped her wrist, hauling her to a seated position as he stood.
“Wait!” she cried, trying to stop herself from admiring the toned male muscles under glossy black skin.
He pulled her up to her feet, cinching an arm about her waist. He called out over her shoulder in that other language. The wagon swayed, and he balanced them both effortlessly.
She twisted her head, desperate to catch a glimpse of what they’d done to Geriman.
He stood between two more of the elves. The one behind him had his hands pinned at the small of his back. The other pressed against him from the front, a hand gripping his jaw to force him to look up. Geriman looked so very small in between the tall, rangy elves. Each of them was dressed similarly to the one who held her. Each of them had hair in shades of white. If she hadn’t known better, she would swear there was sexual promise in the way they pressed him between them.
“Ger!” she cried.
He started, and she saw his eyes cast toward her. “Sol!”
The one standing in front of Geriman glanced at her, smiling darkly.
She gasped when the one who held her lifted her easily and threw her over his shoulder. “Let me down!” she demanded as her world spun.
She didn’t expect him to listen. She clutched his strong body instinctively when he turned and hopped down from the wagon’s bed, carrying her as easily as a sack of grain.
“Leave her alone!” she heard Geriman demand.
“Calm down, little man,” soothed a voice from that direction. A voice as richly decadent as that of the man who carried her. “We don’t intend to hurt either one of you.” His laugh was not at all comforting, even if it did make things low in Marisol’s belly tingle. “Quite the contrary.”
“Do what you want to me. Just let Marisol alone.”
“How noble, little man. You’re getting me excited.”
She twisted, bracing her hands on the back of the man carrying her as she tried to see what was happening to her brother. Ger was struggling, but the two elves held him easily, laughing at his efforts. She now saw Ger’s sword and dagger lying useless on the rocky dirt of the road. The sheaths for both blades dangled uselessly from his belt.
Their mare was nowhere in sight, her tackle lying useless on the ground underneath the hitch.
A hand caressing Marisol’s buttocks through her dress brought her back to her own plight. “Marisol,” murmured her captor, squeezing her familiarly. “What a pretty name.”
She pounded his back since he had a good grip on her legs. “Let me down!”
Laughing, he swatted her backside hard. “All in good time.” He turned and started to walk into the trees.
“No!” She reached a hand toward Geriman. “Ger!”
He struggled fruitlessly. “Sol!”
Her captor swung around, carelessly walking backward for a few steps as he called back to his companions in that other language. With wide, frightened eyes she watched the dense foliage approach and yelped in fright.
The yelp eased into a whimper as he turned back around just before stepping off the path.
“Don’t worry, lovely. I won’t let you fall.”
She swallowed, watching as the man in front of Geriman stepped back. Ger tried to kick him but got a cuff across the face for his efforts.
Her last view of him was of the man behind him hauling him back by his trapped hands.