What better way to spend the day reading some terrific supernatural stories after contributing to a very worthy cause? I’m glad you agree!
How about a look at Michelle Miles‘ offering? I just know you’re going to love this…
When Chloe bakes a little magic into her pastries, she attracts the attention of Edward, the sexy half-demon, half-witch, who’s come to warn her that those who murdered her sister are now after her.
Glancing at her watch, closing time neared. Only ten minutes left in the day. The no-show sexy man let all the wind out of her sails completely. There was no sense in delaying the inevitable, she thought, as she headed to the front door. Her hand was on the lock, ready to flip it when…there he was walking toward the bakery.
Her heart skipped a beat. Chloe resisted the urge to smooth back her hair. Instead she licked her suddenly parched lips. There were no other customers in the shop and she would be…all…alone…with him.
A giant knot formed in her throat. She tried to swallow around it but it wouldn’t go away. She was tempted to reach out to him again, to try and touch him with her mind but she was afraid what would happen. Last time he’d nearly fried her.
Chloe swung open the door as he walked in, a scent of musk and danger wafting in after him. Was that the acrid smell of sweat? She shook her head to clear it. She was being silly.
“Cutting it a bit close, aren’t you?” she asked, closing the door and walking behind the counter.
“I was…detained.” His gaze raked over her from head to toe, as though he could picture her naked.
Even though she wanted him to picture her naked, she couldn’t help but notice the dust on his black t-shirt or the smudge of dirt on his left cheek. The way his face looked damp. His hair stood in spikes, like he’d been raking his hand through it repeatedly. And he looked like he hadn’t shaved in three days, which seemed an odd occurrence to her. Not that she would complain. She liked her men rough and ready.
With a small smile to mask her terror, she used her sense to reach out again. She probably shouldn’t, judging by what happened yesterday, but she had to know who or what he was.
The moment she reached for him, it was like he snagged her, dragged her to him, and planted a kiss so sensual, so erotic she lost track of who and what she was. He projected an image to her, showing her all the naughty things he wanted to do to her. Most of them included her on her back, covered in cream cheese icing while he licked it off all the delicate parts of her body.
Chloe gasped, pulled away from him and stumbled backward.
“You’re a…you’re…” She couldn’t get the words out.
“A witch. Yes.” He leaned his hands on the counter and slanted toward her. “I thought you figured that out yesterday when you tried to poke me. Would you like me to prove it to you?”
The door lock clicked into place. All the blinds closed with a flourish.
“Now you’re just showing off,” Chloe snapped. Despite her bravado, fear clawed her throat. “Are you going to take me back to the coven?”
“No,” he said, matter-of-factly. “I’m going to take you in the back, strip you, and fuck you.”
“Who are you?” Her voice was stronger then, though she couldn’t mistake the quiver of her words. She didn’t want to acknowledge that it was from heightened anticipation.
“You can call me Edward.” His eyes landed on her lips again.
“That’s not your real name, is it?”
“You don’t need to know my real name.” His gaze raked over her. “Yet.”
Fear trickled over her in a cold sweat. “Are you from the coven?”
“Yes. I’ve been sent to…” He paused, cocked his head to one side before smiling and showing off those dimples. “…retrieve something that belongs to them.”
Chloe swallowed hard. Damn. She knew exactly what thing he wanted to retrieve and he would have to do it over her dead body. Which is probably the idea.
She never should have run and she’d been stupid to think she could hide here in the human world, under the guise of a baker. Who was she fooling?
She could admit now that her baking had gotten out of hand. That she had this drive and determination to be the best there ever was. That’s why she started putting a little magic in her cupcakes, a little enchantment in her scones and using a little witchery on her cookies. She was the best in town. She had succeeded. She had also succeeded in not staying anonymous.
Her use of magic had, no doubt, called attention to her.
She could run but he’d catch her. And she certainly couldn’t get around him to get to the door. Chloe straightened her back and steeled herself against the coming onslaught. She wouldn’t go down without a fight.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
Edward chuckled, a deep rumble in his throat. “Oh, come now. Surely you must know. You took something you shouldn’t have, didn’t you? You also saw something you shouldn’t have.”
Damn. Chloe thought for sure she had escaped from that horrible world. Apparently changing her name and her appearance hadn’t done a bit of good. She’d convinced herself over the last year she really was Chloe O’Shea, baker extraordinaire instead of Sadie Steele, witch who saw something she really wished she’d never seen.
Edward let her name roll of his tongue in a dark, dangerous baritone dripping with sex and lust and dark promises.
Chloe swallowed hard, that lump still there. “What do you want?”
He leaned a hip on the counter, his musky scent drifting over her, tantalizing her. He certainly didn’t smell of fear. Instead, he smelled of eroticism and awesomeness. He glanced over his cuticles, examining his perfectly trimmed nails.
“It seems a have another rather pressing problem at the moment. What I want is you.” He gave her a pointed look. One that said he knew what she’d done last night, all alone, with thoughts of him racing through her mind. “It’s the only way to cure me.”
“Cure you?” Fear mingled with uncertainty as it flooded through her. Clearly, he knew who and what she was—a healer. “What do you mean?”
“Can’t you see what you’ve done to me?” He leaned toward her, his lips parted. “You put magic in your cupcakes, didn’t you?”
“I…” She faltered. She had and he knew it. And maybe subconsciously she’d put a little something extra in his. A big mistake, clearly.
“You did. That’s why I’m here.” He twined a blond lock around his forefinger. “Once I took that first bite, the magic in them awoke the demon inside me.”
Her eyes narrowed to slits. “Demon? I thought you were a witch.”
“I’m half-witch, half-incubus. Lucky for you. I take what I need, when I need it.” He winked and leaned toward to her, his lips close to hers as he whispered against them. “And there is one of two ways you can give me the release I need.”
“Dare I ask?” Her heart thrummed in her chest. Her traitorous body reacted to the way his warm breath lingered over her mouth, teasing her. Tempting her.
“Have sex with me for the next twelve hours. It will sate my thirst for you and break the spell.”
Edward’s lips brushed hers ever-so-softly, rich with promise and vows of ecstasy. Slick heat exploded between her legs, begging for release. Instead, she jerked away, out of his reach.
“Do you expect me to surrender to you that easily?”
“Oh, I expect you will surrender.” Again, that pointed sultry look. “You’ll beg to surrender to me.”
Chloe propped her hands on her hips. “I will never surrender to you.” Yes, you will, you liar. You know you will. Her inner voice taunted her.
“You want me, too, don’t you?” His grin showed off the dimples around his mouth.
“What’s my other option?” she asked, ignoring his question. Of course she wanted him. Her body shook with desire.
“Perform a spell to break the magic that’s holding me.”
Well, that was certainly out of the question. If she did, it would be like sending up a giant neon sign pointing at her saying, Here I am! Come get me! The coven would definitely know where she was if she used that much magic. She told herself the little bit she used in her baked goods would go unnoticed. That she could remain incognito. Perhaps she had been wrong about that, too, if he’d found her so easily.
Edward had to realize that using a spell like that would make the coven aware. That’s why he tried to coerce her into having sex with him. Like that was such a bad thing.