DEATH BLOW by Jianne Carlo
Viking Vengeance II
Can a mere Viking break the curse of a sea god?
Cursed by the sea-god Ægir to be burned at the stake, Lady Nyssa seeks the one man who can save her--the warrior who bears the mark of the Saracen. When she finds a Viking warrior wounded and senseless on a beach, she knows he is her savior. But Ægir’s wrath extends to others in her life as well. He’s killed her father and stepmother, turned her stepbrother into a mountain lion, and imprisoned her people. And worse, he’s cursed any man who lays with her to have his manparts wither and die.
Konáll has traded coin a-plenty to gain a wife with lands, the daughter of the King of Moray. He expects a refined, comely, trainable damsel, not a doomed warrior princess with the strength of a giantess who cannot bear the touch of a man. But once he learns more about this woman who speaks to talking mountain cats and hides as a peasant among the rabble, he cannot deny his feelings. There’s more than one way to breech a maidenhead, and if teaching her the ways of a woman’s pleasure with a carved ivory dildo is what it takes to make her his, then he’s more than happy to challenge the wrath of a god…
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Afore she could utter a protest, he quickly worked the laces loose. She grabbed the bodice when he began to draw it down and whirled about. “We do this now?”
“Aye. Now. And when you have recovered later, and before dawn.”
Thrice? Her mouth went dry. She swallowed.
He tugged her hands away from the gown and with a few deft moves slipped the cyrtel away. With a soft whoosh the dress puddled around her feet. His deft fingers made quick work of the ribbons tying her transparent chemise together and that garment joined the cyrtel on the ground.
She cupped her hands over her breasts and averted her gaze.
Nyssa squeaked when he scooped her into his arms, strode to the pallet in the center of the tent, and set her down gently on the packed straw covered by a sheet of fine linen. She fought when he tried to pry her hands free.
“What is amiss? I have seen your bounty afore.” He stood and untied his boots.
She snorted recalling her cousins’ taunts about her meager titties. “Bounty? My breasts are not bigger than a plump boy’s. And they are stamped with Aegir’s curse.”
Konáll tugged his tunic o’er his head. She had not even noticed when he set aside his axe and sword.
“’Tis a birthmark, Nyssa.”
“Nay. Four seasons past, I had no such mark.”
He sat next to her.
She fixed her gaze on the platter next to the pallet, and her mouth watered when she saw a fat loaf, a round of cheese, and a few pears and apples. Her stomach growled.
Konáll chuckled. “Come handfast wife, let me feed you.”
He lifted her onto his lap and set her bottom on his engorged shaft. ’Twas hot and hard and throbbed. She could scare draw breath and did not know what to do with her hands. He surrounded her, one arm around her waist and his broad chest so close that the tip of her nose grazed a clump of golden hair. He smelled of soap and spice and warrior, hard and relentless.
Nyssa flinched when he brushed a slice of apple over her lips. She glanced up and found him watching her like a hawk about to snatch a tasty morsel. The thumping of her heart roared in her ears.
“Prefer you pears to apples?”
She shook her head and opened her mouth to take the slice, but he whisked the fruit away. Frowning, she said, “I like apples.”
“Good. Take the slice then.” With that he slipped the apple between his lips and waggled an eyebrow.
“You are daft.” She smacked his shoulder.
He cocked his head and his hand slipped between her thighs.
’Twas as if he had been waiting for her to do so, for he dipped his head and thrust the apple into her open mouth. Her eyes crossed. She closed them and sucked on the slice. His tongue brushed hers and the tantalizing touch made her female parts spasm and dew. She nibbled on the apple, caught the tip of his tongue between her teeth, and froze.
His hand cupped the back of her head, and he opened his mouth over hers, surging inside. ’Twas hungry and heated and delicious, the way he stroked, this way and that. She leaned to one side to deepen his sweet penetration and jerked free when he splayed his fingers over her mound. The heel of his palm ground against that part of her woman’s flesh that ached and pulsed and had become the center of her world. She lifted into his hand and cried out his name when his finger invaded her sheath.
“Aye, mìlseachd, come for me. Say my name and find your pleasure.” He sucked on her lower lip and kissed her again. His tongue thrust in cadence with his finger, in and out, up and down. Her walls fisted and released.
She gripped his shoulders and tangled her fingers in his hair. A wildness took ahold of her, she met him stroke for stroke, licking his tongue, driving against his palm, reaching for something, but what, she knew not. Just that it was there tantalizingly out of reach. All at once, he tweaked her nipple, and she shattered into explosive convulsions.
He moved swiftly, his mouth never leaving hers, and then he was above her. His knees nudged hers apart, and he came down between her legs. She felt his cock at her entrance, the head probing her core, and then he pushed forward.
Her inner walls shuddered at the exquisite pressure when his engorged shaft stretched her sheath. She kneaded his scalp and wrapped her legs around his waist. The action jolted him deeper, and she was cert he filled her to the hilt.
A gnawing frustration ate at her. She wanted, needed, him to move, but he had stilled. She tangled her tongue with his and bit the tip. He groaned into her mouth and grasped her hips. He started to withdraw, and she broke the kiss and fisted her hands in his hair. “Nay. Do not leave now.”
The command came out as a wail.
“Never.” He nipped her jaw and plunged back in, the thrust powerful and fierce and the most wonderful invasion in any kingdom. And then he repeated the motion—retreat, advance—each plundering faster and harder. Every time he shoved into her channel, he hit the nub at the apex of her womanhood. That spot vibrated and burned, and Nyssa knew she would burst on his next impalement.
“Now!” he barked, his voice gruff and abrasive.
It took all her strength to lift lids so heavy they could have been anchors. What she saw took her breath away. His face was contorted, lips drawn back tightly over bared teeth. No blue showed in his eyes, they were black with desire. He reached between them and pinched her nub.
She fractured and tightened her legs on his back.
Her muscles contracted and released feverishly.
He pounded into her, threw back his head, and shouted, “Mine. Mine. Mine.”
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