Dark Hunger


Page 6



“Signal says it’s parked in a nice neighborhood three-point-three miles from your position.” Drew gave him the street address. “City maps show that to be a pretty exclusive condominium complex. You’ll need to find her specific apartment.”


Three miles, so she could walk to this park, Matthias thought. “I will track her. You will monitor, and call me if she moves again.”


“Rowan called me,” Drew told him. “She’s getting everything ready, but she’s worried about you.”


Rowan forever worried about him. Matthias found it alternately amusing and disconcerting. His mother had died in childbirth when he was a boy, and by that time his older sisters had married and gone off with their husbands. Growing up as he had, he was not accustomed to such attention.


Matthias left the park and drove to the address Drew had given him, a large network of buildings with several signs proclaiming them to be Falcon’s Ridge Condominiums. An armed guard sitting in a shack before the gated entrance prevented him from accessing the complex. He didn’t attempt to talk his way in, but scouted the boundaries of the entire property before parking his car beneath some trees in an empty adjacent lot and taking his pack from the trunk.


The seven-foot-high brick wall surrounding Falcon’s Ridge appeared solid enough to discourage any trespassers, but the wide spacing of the street lamps allowed him to find a darkened area that would conceal his movements. Fortunately the decorative bird statuettes interspaced along the top of the wall had been cemented into place, and one held the loop of rope he tossed over it securely.


He climbed up the wall hand over hand, bracing his feet against the brick before removing the loop around the base of the stone falcon and dropping it over the side. He jumped down to a clear spot before rolling behind a row of hedges that had been trimmed into a neat rectangle.


After waiting for any sound warning that he had been seen, he coiled the rope and crawled twenty feet to a small grove of trees, where he stood and scanned the area. The two buildings before him appeared newly built and empty; beyond them was a walk that followed the circular drive to the other buildings around the complex.


Each building had its own parking lot, and he was obliged to check five before he found the woman’s car. From the vehicle he followed her scent, which led him up five flights of stairs to the very top floor of the building, which was occupied by four separate apartments.


The woman’s scent ended at the door to the back right corner of the level, and when he stood in front of it he could hear music and water.


He went to the landing and studied the back of the building. No balconies or windows offered him a simple way in, but a sixth, narrow set of stairs led up to the roof. He climbed up and saw rows of dome-shaped transparent bubbles. He had to think for a moment before he remembered the word in English for it that Rowan had taught him.


Skylights.


Matthias eyed the domes, determined which had been placed over the woman’s apartment, and took some tools from his pack. He took his time as he went to work on the bolts securing it, removing them one by one until he was able to lift the dome away.


Music drifted up to him, the clear notes soft and sweet, like lark song on a fair morning. They brought with them the woman’s scent, and the need returned, so strong and impatient that he had to hold back for a moment and wrestle desire for control.


Below the skylight lay a bed draped with a shiny blue and green coverlet. Ribbons of dark violet wound through the fabric and gathered it in places. He saw only one pillow, clad in a violet cover and, on the wooden stand beside the bed, a cordless telephone unit and a small remote device. The rug beneath the bed, which covered the floor of the room, was a dark green, like thick grass. At the end of the bed lay draped an old, thick blue robe fashioned for a man.


The robe made his gut tighten, for he had not considered the possibility that she lived with a lover.


He slowly replaced the dome and sat, thinking.


Movement drew his eye to the skylight. The woman walked naked to the bed, her head swaddled in a green towel, and picked up the robe. She pulled it over her body and belted it before walking out of sight.


Matthias rolled onto his back and stared up at the stars. Even through the distortion of the Plexiglas, he had seen the healthy gleam of her alabaster skin and the full globes of her naked breasts. Her limbs and torso had been all long, full curves, ripe and wanton, like a fertility goddess in the flesh. His hands shook slightly as he rubbed them over his face.

He had to stop this. She was a woman to be taken, and not in the manner his body craved.


The light showing through the bubble disappeared, and he heard the sounds of silk moving and the gentle give of a mattress. He turned over to look through the bubble, but the curved surface showed only a dark space.


Now that he knew exactly where she lived and could follow the vehicle she drove anywhere it went, the time had come for him to retreat and observe again from a prudent distance. He kept peering down until his eyes adjusted to the darkness inside the apartment and he could clearly see her form on the bed. She lay on her side, the coverlet pushed to the foot of the bed, her back toward him. Soundlessly he lifted the dome and set it to one side.


She had discarded the robe and wore nothing but a pair of light-colored panties that barely covered her bottom. The long line of her back showed the stretch of her spine and the nip of her trim waist. She had broad shoulders for a woman, but they curved from neck to arm in a beautiful shape, like the polished frame of an ivory harp. The subtle indentations of her ribs showed each time she took a breath, and while her eyes were closed, he sensed she remained awake.


For a time she remained still, and then she began shifting, first to one side and then the other. She took the lone pillow from beneath her head and put her arms around it, holding it against her torso. She pulled it over her face, and then flung it away.


Matthias had spent enough sleepless nights to know her thoughts were not allowing her to leave this world for the river of dreams. Unless she found some peace within herself, she could not forge her way through the dark waters of the night.


The woman’s left hand lifted from her side and came to her face, where she pressed three fingers against her lips. She used the tip of her tongue to lick at her fingertips, and then rubbed the pad of her third finger back and forth against her full bottom lip. The kissed hand curved down, over and under her chin, into the hollows of her throat. The stroking fingers lingered there, tracing the fine bones at the base of her neck as if she hesitated to do more.


Matthias’s mouth dried as he watched, unable to breathe, unwilling to move.


She took a deeper breath, releasing it as she turned onto her back. If she opened her eyes now, she would see him looking down at her through the skylight. Matthias found he didn’t care in the slightest. If she saw him, he would drop himself through and be on top of her before she could get out of the bed. The ache in his crotch began to beat like a drum.


Open your eyes, lovely one. Give me this reason to come down to you.


Her dark eyelashes remained where they were, but her fine brows drew together as her left hand glided down again. She traced the contours of one breast and then the other with light, unhurried touches, circling around each stiff nipple, pressing in and smoothing over the delicate flesh.


He watched her pinch and tug gently at the peaks, and smelled the change in her scent as her arousal swelled. She wanted a strong mouth there, kissing and suckling at her pretty breasts; he could tell from her manner of toying with them.


The fine edge of her teeth appeared, worrying at her bottom lip as the muscles in her legs stretched and her thighs clenched. Still she played, teasing herself until her breath quickened and tiny beads of sweat appeared on her brow.


Anticipating her, Matthias reached for the front of his trousers, easing them open until he could work his hand inside. As her fingertips stroked the dent of her navel, he grasped his shaft. The stiff heat against his palm and fingers ached from the hidden tip to the tight cusp of his stones. When her legs parted for her questing hand, he tugged back his foreskin, letting the night air kiss the slick head.


The air rising from the apartment brought to him another gift: the damp scent of her sex, surely the loveliest aroma to ever fill his head. His chest swelled as he tightened his fist, and the steady, pounding surf of his need turned his shaft to inflexible iron and squeezed a single pearl from its blind, seeking eye.


She tended to her sweet place with loving gentleness, cupping and holding at first and then parting the folds beneath the triangle of dark curls to stroke her third finger in the silky moisture gathered between. The wet sounds made his teeth grind together; they called to him with wordless hunger, begging for him to bury himself in her snug little well and fill it over and over until she overflowed.


In she pressed her fingers, petting her pearl before reaching and penetrating herself as she mimicked a man’s thrust. As her fingers danced, he stroked in time, his eyes hot and dry, the sight and smell and sound of her tangling inside his head. It had been too long for him since last he lay between a woman’s legs; he knew he could not last as long as she could. As he pumped, he prayed he would.


She took in a startled breath and held it as her hips lifted high, and pressed her mound against the heel of her palm. Matthias bit back a groan as his own pleasure broke and he jerked his foreskin up, closing the end over the spurting head. The heat of his seed backwashed, bathing his shaft as he heard the wordless sounds she made, and he watched the change come over her damp face. She held nothing back, lips parted, neck arched, her breasts thrust up as if in a final offering. It took every ounce of control he possessed to watch her peak and do nothing more.


She turned over, slowly pulling the pillow to her face as her body became boneless with satisfaction. It gave Matthias time to cover himself and reach for the dome. He went still as he heard a wrenching sound, and glanced down to see the woman’s fists tighten in the pillow as her shoulders trembled with the force of her sobs.


She gave herself pleasure, and then she wept after taking it? He had known women who shed tears in his arms, but they had been joyful—especially if the woman had never before known what a man and woman could give each other.



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