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Unbound (Forbidden Bond Book 1)(4)

By:Cat Miller

She wanted to make love again before she went away, but he was still  resisting. They'd had sex a few times over the two years, but he never  seemed eager after that first night in the back of his truck. Lucas  hadn't been a virgin like her. He'd dated a lot and had more experience  than she wanted to ponder. Still, it was never very good for her. He did  his thing and he always kind of zoned out afterward. They had a great  relationship otherwise, and she thought she might even love him. She  wanted to love him, but his reluctance to be intimate always made her  feel rejected. Tonight she wasn't taking no for an answer. She wanted to  touch and be touched. She needed to feel a stronger connection to this  man before she left in the morning.

Taking the lead, she deepened the kiss and slid her hand down his body  and into the front of his running pants. Lucas was rock hard in her  hand. He was as hot and ready as she was, and that gave her a little  more confidence. Shyly she stroked him up and down and he groaned  against her mouth. He never let her touch him like this, so she feared  doing it wrong or hurting him. Her shirt and shorts were already gone,  and she felt triumphant when he cupped her breasts and began to knead.  Her nipples hardened instantly and she arched her back to get closer.  She needed more, so much more.

Suddenly he rolled her over and pinned her arms above her head. "I can't  do this," he panted. "Not this way. Not in my truck. You deserve better  than this, Danielle."         



She cleared her throat and fought the tears burning the backs of her  eyes. He was doing it again. He always had such a gallant reason for  abstaining. "Lucas, all I want is you. Nothing else matters. Please let  me love you," she whispered.

"No. Don't you see? It feels too much like good-bye. I want you so bad,  but you're trying to prove your love before you leave me and it just  isn't necessary."

Feeling embarrassed and rejected, she wrestled to reclaim her arms and  push him off. She struggled to unzip the sleeping bag. Mostly naked, she  scrambled for her clothes as the tears began to flow.

Why did he always do this? What was so wrong with her that he didn't  want to make love to her? There was always an excuse. She wished he  would just be honest and say he didn't want her.

"Dani, please stop and talk to me. Don't be angry. I just want the best  for you, baby," he begged, but she continued her search for her shoes.

She was pissed. How could he ruin this for them? "Damn it, Lucas!" she  cursed. "Did you ever think I might need you to show me your love?" Her  heartbeat seemed to pound in her head as she stood topless in the lace  panties she'd bought for the occasion and glared at Lucas. She realized  distantly that it was the first time he'd seen her quite so bare. The  few times they'd been together it had been a hurried affair in the back  of his truck, and she'd never actually gotten completely naked. Lucas  stared, slack jawed, and something suddenly came over Dani. She didn't  care what he thought any longer. She was going to take what she wanted,  and she wanted Lucas.

She slid her underwear over her hips and let them fall to her feet.  Lucas watched the scrap of black lace as if mesmerized. Dani climbed  onto his lap, looking deeply into his eyes.

"Don't you want me, Lucas?"

He didn't answer; still staring at her, his eyes glazed over.

She hungrily kissed him, trying to make him feel her need for him, her  love for him, through the kiss. His hands moved hotly over her body  while she licked down his neck.

She began to feel strange, as if the world had somehow shifted.  Suddenly, her vision was very sharp, and the night seemed brighter.  Every beat of his heart was too loud, and the heat pouring off him made  her … hungry. Dani's head began to spin. It was no longer the sweet, heavy  petting and quick awkward sex of their past. It was hot, and the  feelings he aroused in her body were overwhelming. She pulled his shirt  off, continuing to bathe him with her tongue.

Warmth spread through her body, and, suddenly, odd pictures began to  flash through her mind. Were they memories? They weren't her memories,  but they were memories of her from the outside. She was so excited and  confused, all at once. She saw herself the first day of college, at the  Ravens game downtown, reading a book on the beach in Ocean City, and  playing in the snow with Lucas's brothers. The images just kept coming.  They were Lucas's memories, only that couldn't really be her. The girl  in his memories looked just like her, down to the white hair and light  eyes, only she looked angelic. She was delicate and graceful. Was that  how he saw her? Then she saw the most disturbing memory from just a  moment before, when she climbed into his lap. Her pale-blue eyes were  black.

She jerked herself up and looked through the rear window of the truck  into the rearview mirror in the cab of the truck. Her irises were jet  black. She looked down at Lucas for a reaction. He was slumped backward,  still looking at her all glassy eyed, as if he was looking through her  and not really seeing her. What had she done? She smacked him to get his  attention.

He shook his head to clear the cobwebs and said, "What happened?"

"Lucas, I am so sorry! I have to go now, right now. Please forgive me."  Dani grabbed her clothes and leapt down from the truck, dressing as she  crossed the field where they had always parked, leaving her shoes  behind.

"Dani, I'm sorry for whatever I did. Please don't leave this way. Let's talk about this."

He pursued her across the field, but she had to get away from him. His  body heat tried to pull her back into his arms, his pulse called her  name, and a hunger she didn't comprehend burned her throat. So she ran  fast, too fast. In bare feet, she ran through the woods and across the  school parking lot. She ran down Ebenezer Road and about ten blocks to  her house to curl up on the front porch swing and prayed her mom didn't  hear her. She couldn't go into the house. Her mom was still up, and  there was no way she was going to be able to act like all was well. She  had to calm down and think.

A while later, Lucas's truck pulled up, and he walked past the porch and  around to the side of the house where her bedroom was on the second  floor. He tossed pebbles at her window and pleaded for her to come  outside or answer her phone.         



She pulled her cell out of the pocket of her jeans. Good thing it hadn't  fallen out in her struggle to wrestle them on while running. She had  ten new voice mails. She had turned off the ringer so it wouldn't ruin  their magical evening under the stars. What a joke. After a while, he  got back in the truck and left. That was for the best, since Dani was  too scared to deal with him that night.

In the morning, over breakfast in their little kitchen, her mom eyed her  suspiciously over her coffee cup. She was having her standard whole  wheat English muffin and coffee, while Dani indulged in her second bowl  of cereal with an extra scoop of sugar for good measure.

Her mom still looked mostly the same to her as she had since Dani was  little. Her dark blond hair was shorter, hanging to just below her  shoulders, but there wasn't a gray hair or a laugh line in sight. Dani  wished she had inherited her mother's hair. She looked like her mom,  with the same eyes and figure. It was the hair and facial features that  stood them apart.

Her mom was her hero. She worked, took care of the house, and did all  the things most women would call a man to take care of, and, most of  all, she took care of Dani and never once complained or asked for help.  Tessa was a photographer, so they had beautiful pictures hanging all  around the house.

"You have to be self-sufficient, Danielle. No one is going to provide  for you when you become an adult," she would remind Dani over the years  if her grades had the nerve to drop below a solid B. "Your education is  the greatest weapon in the battle for independence."

Dani never really understood why her mom felt the need to drive that  point home. Her mom hadn't gone to college, and she was doing fine. They  had everything they needed and most of the things they wanted.

Then Dani remembered the night two years before, when she finally got up  the nerve to demand answers. "Mom, why won't you tell me about my  father?"

Tessa was making dinner while Dani did homework at their small kitchen  table. She'd turned her head slightly in Dani's direction, so Dani knew  she'd been heard, though she didn't get an answer right away. Her mother  finished plating the meal and brought it to the table as Dani put her  books away.

Tessa walked over to stare out the window above the sink in the small  kitchen. They didn't need much room. It had always been just the two of  them. They had no other family to speak of, and her mom never even  dated.

Dani began again. "What am I supposed to tell people who ask about my  parents? The immaculate conception thing isn't really working for me  anymore. Please don't say I'm too young and it's complicated. I'm old  enough for college, so I think I can handle it now."