What a pathetic fool he was. He’d been keeping them near so that he could smell her whenever he slept. Her scent had comforted him on a level that was unimaginable.
And right now, he felt like a jackass at having been found out. But that feeling vanished behind the realization that another man was holding Kat’s clothes…
Infuriated, Sin stormed back into the main room and snatched them from Kish’s hand. “Do you mind? These don’t belong to you.”
He turned to catch Damien’s smirk.
“What are you looking at?”
“Nothing. I’m just trying to imagine you in flannel pink sock monkey pajamas. I’m sure you look stunning in pink.”
Kish burst out laughing. “Actually, with his skin tone, he probably does look really good in it. I would definitely say he’s an autumn.”
“That’s summer, you dweeb.”
Sin gave them a cold look. “I find it fascinating that you two women know that color palettes for clothes have a name.” He turned to Damien. “The fact you corrected him really scares me.”
“Hey, I’m not the one sleeping in pink pajamas. I don’t want to hear it from you.”
Sin glared at him. “It’s a good thing you don’t embezzle from my casino or I’d kill you where you stand.” And with that he returned to his room.
Sin closed the door and leaned against it. Before he could stop himself, he lifted the pajamas to his nose and smelled the gentle scent that was unique to Kat. How something so stupid could both soothe and crush him he didn’t understand. But there was no denying what he felt.
He wanted her here with him. And it killed him to be here alone.
“What have I done?”
But he knew. He had to keep her away from him. It was for her own good. If Ishtar had fallen to the gallu, what chance did Kat stand? He would never jeopardize her safety for his selfishness.
Disgusted with his own weakness, he forced himself to toss the pajamas to his bed and head for the bathroom. As soon as he caught himself in the mirror, he understood Damien and Kish. He did look like hell.
His eyes were sunken from lack of sleep… he couldn’t remember the last time he’d shaved. His hair was shaggy and unkempt. Kat would kick him sideways for looking like this, and he probably did smell as bad as he looked.
Disheartened, Sin went to the shower to bathe and prove to all of them that he could function without her.
He just didn’t want to.
As he waited for the water to heat, he balled his fist and placed it against the cool wall outside the shower before he pressed his forehead to the tile. Closing his eyes, he could see her so clearly in his mind… feel her.
He tensed at the sound of her voice saying his name. It sounded like she was right behind him. But he knew better.
Then he felt it. The soft whisper of a hand on his shoulder. Afraid it was nothing more than torture invented by his mind, he didn’t want to open his eyes.
“Are you all right?” she asked.
“Whether or not you’re still there when I turn around.”
“Do you want me to leave then?”
The word “no” hung in his throat. Dammit, man, shake your head and tell her to leave. It’s for her own good. It’s for your own good.
Still her touch was on his skin.
Forcing himself to turn around, he opened his eyes and saw the most beautiful thing he’d ever seen in his life. Kat’s face. Unable to stand it, he pulled her to him and kissed her.
Kat couldn’t breathe at the ferocity of Sin’s embrace. She tried to bury her hands in his hair, but her fingers became stuck in tangles. She had to be hurting him and yet he didn’t seem to notice as his tongue danced with hers and his thick whiskers scraped against her face.
The scent of Sin and whisky filled her head, and her heart raced. She’d been so afraid of his reception that this was a startling surprise for her.
“Does this mean you’re happy to see me?”
“More than happy.” He pinned her against the shower door, and before she could blink her clothes were gone.
Kat couldn’t breathe as he dipped his head down to tease her right breast. His whiskers scraped her skin and sent chills all over her while his tongue tormented her with pleasure. He was ferocious as his hands and lips sought out every part of her body.
Ecstasy assailed her. When she’d come here, this reception was the last thing she’d expected. Truthfully, she’d thought he was going to throw her out and tell her never to come back. Or at the very least to turn and walk away without hearing a word she spoke.
Not in her wildest dreams had she expected him to be as hungry for her as she was for him. He was desperate to touch her, and it made her smile to know just how much he’d missed her. It felt so good to be in his arms again. To have his breath scorching her skin. Just the feel of his strong arms was enough to make her wet and needy.
“I want you, Sin,” she breathed in his ear. “I don’t want to wait.”
She reached over her head to grab onto the shower bar as he entered her.
Sin growled at the feel of being inside her again. Every part of him shouted in relief. He looked up to see the precious smile on her face as she watched him thrust against her. His entire body was shaking from the pleasure of this. From the heat of her body welcoming his.
Waiting for her was the hardest thing he’d ever done in his life, and it seemed to take forever before she finally sank her nails into his arm and threw her head back to cry out. The minute he felt her cli**x, he joined her.
Kat’s head was swimming as she released the shower rod and realized the metal groove had cut into her palm. Still, she didn’t care as she wrapped herself around him and just listened to his breathing in her ear.
“That was an unexpected treat,” she said with a laugh.
Sin wanted to laugh with her, but he didn’t find this funny. He’d jeopardized her and recanted everything he’d tried to accomplish this last week.
And for what?
For the touch of her hand on his face…
The truth tore through him. He’d sell his soul for one moment with her. But he couldn’t tell her that.
“Why are you here?” he asked, his voice thick and strange sounding even to himself.
“Xypher told me Kessar’s weakness and I thought you should know it.”
That was it? That was the only reason she’d come here? Part of him had wanted her to tell him that she’d missed him. That she’d been unable to function without him. But now that he looked at her, he realized that she looked great. Unlike him, she hadn’t lost sleep. There was no sign of her having moped around or grieved.
And that seriously pissed him off.
She frowned at him. “Are you okay?”
“Fine,” he snapped.
“You don’t look fine. You look… kind of pissed. I thought this would make you happy.”
“I’m ecstatic.” Oh yeah, there was no sarcasm in that tone…
She slapped lightly at him. “You’re such an ass**le.”
“Asshole?” he growled. “Is that all you have to say to me after a week?”
She folded her arms over her chest as she met that golden gaze levelly. “Yeah, that and you need a bath.”
“I was about to do that when you showed up.”
She scoffed. “By the looks of you, I’d say you’re a couple of days late.”
He grabbed a washcloth from the stack of them in the wall cupboard. “Are you simply here to insult me? Because if you are, I have two others who beat you to it. They’re better at it, too.”
“Oh, I seriously doubt that.”
He ignored her as he checked the water temperature. “Just tell me what you found out and go.”
“No. Not until you tell me what’s wrong with you.”
“Nothing is wrong with me.”
“Right. C’mon, Sin, stop sulking and answer me.”
“I don’t sulk.”
Yeah, right. “You’re pouting like a two-year-old.”
“I am not.”
She put her hands on her h*ps and imitated a small child. Then she answered in the most juvenile tone she could muster, “Are, too.”
Sin glared at her. Even though he wanted to be angry, he couldn’t stop a small laugh that betrayed him. “I hate you.” But there was no emotion in his voice to back those words.
She popped him on his butt cheek. “Fine. Be that way. I’ll go find me someone else to love.”
As she stepped away from him, he grabbed her arm.
Kat paused as she saw the angry look in his eyes. It was absolutely furious and it chilled her to the bone.
“Who?” he growled.
What the hell was he talking about? “Who what?”
“Who are you going to?”
Suddenly everything was clear to her. His demeanor, his anger. Everything. “Oh, good grief, Sin, you couldn’t possibly think I was really going to find someone else. I didn’t remain chaste for eleven thousand years to start sleeping around now. Believe me, if there’s one thing I am, it’s capable of controlling myself. So put that jealousy back in its box and cover it with a stainless-steel lid. Nail it shut and stick it where the sun never shines. I don’t ever want to see this side of you again.”
He stepped back. “Well, what am I supposed to think? You don’t look any worse for the wear.”
“Wear of what?”
He looked away from her. “Never mind.”
She stopped him before he entered the shower. “Do you think this week was easy on me?”
He raked her with a sneer. “You look pretty unscarred.”
She growled at him. “Boy, you better be glad you’re stunning when you’re nak*d or I’d skin you for that. I’ve been through utter hell this week because of you. Do you think I wanted to come crawling back here only to have you tell me to get lost again? I know it’s hard for you to believe, but I do have my pride, and you’ve kicked it for the last time.”
His face brightened. “You missed me?”
And that just irritated her more. “Is that all you got out of what I just said?”
“No, but it’s what I need to know the answer to.”
She let out a frustrated breath. “Yes, Sin. I missed you. I’ve mourned for you. I’ve
hated you. I’ve wanted to sic Simi on you with barbecue sauce and I’ve done nothing but think about how much I just want to hold you… and yes, I’ve missed every part of you, from that annoying little sound you make when you’re irritated to the way you hold on to me when we sleep. Now are you happy?”
His golden eyes sparkled. “I’m delirious.” He kissed her again.
Kat pulled back and shook her head. “You know, I’m starting to feel like a yo-yo here. Either you want me or you don’t. You have to stop playing with me, because I can’t take it.”
“I want you here with me, Katra. I do. I’ve barely been able to function this week.”
She cocked her head. “Are you sure?”
“Yes,” he breathed. “You’re twice the distraction when you’re gone as you are when you’re here.”
She wasn’t sure if that was a good thing or a bad thing, but she was willing to take it. Pleased by his rancor, she wrinkled her nose at him. “Well, in that case, get a bath. You’re kind of smelly.”
“No, I’m not.”
She held her hand up with her forefinger and thumb about an inch apart. “Just a little.”
He snorted. “Fine.” He opened the shower and stepped in. To his delight, Kat followed him inside and took the cloth from his hand before she began washing his back.
“So what did you find out about Kessar?” he asked over his shoulder.
“The only thing he fears is a woman named Ravanah.”
Sin gave her a duh-stare. “She’s not a woman. She’s another demon.”
“Is she a living demon?”
“There’s some speculation that she is alive and well, but no one has heard from her for centuries.”
“Is she gallu?”
“Oh no. She’s unique to herself.”
“She eats the flesh of other demons. Hence Kessar’s fear of her.”
“Ooo, nice. She could come in handy.”
“If we could find her. But I wouldn’t hold my breath. Not to mention, when there aren’t any demons around, she eats the flesh of infants and pregnant women. She’s a vicious one.”
“She sounds lovely. Maybe we should invite her for dinner one night?” Kat turned him around so that she could soap the front of him. It was actually hard to concentrate while she was touching his nak*d body. She’d forgotten how breathless he made her. He was so large and powerful… so incredibly sexy. It was hard to think about anything other than the fact that she really wanted another go-round that ended with her bending him like a pretzel. “By the way, I also found out that Zakar is being kept-”
“Chained to Kessar’s throne and the Tablet is around his neck.”
She looked up to catch the heated glint in his eyes as she ran the cloth over his c**k and under his sac. “You knew that?”
“I made sure I got that information from a few of my recent kills.”
“Sweet. All my information was useless. Nice to know.”
He cupped her hand with his and rubbed it gently against him. Kat swallowed at the silken feel of him sliding against her soapy fingers. If he wasn’t covered in soap, she’d be tonguing his ni**les.
“At least you tried.” He dipped his head to kiss her lightly on the neck. “That’s more than most.”