Fane tugged at Jacque's shirt as his lips turned up slightly. "Mrs. Lupei, you are entirely overdressed for what I have planned."
Jacque laughed out loud as she helped him undress and then let him undress her. They spent the night in a tavern with no electricity, the only light and heat coming from a stone fireplace, in a room where hours before a war had been planned. They spent the night basking in their love and passion for each other and, like other times since they'd mated, Fane poured his heart into loving her completely, shutting out everything else and letting her know that when he held her, when she was in his arms naked and vulnerable, she was the most beautiful and precious part of his life.
"Decebel, where are you taking me?" Jen grumbled as she was pulled along behind him by his hand.
"It's a surprise."
As the night had come to a close and everyone had headed to their rooms, Jen had been doing the same. Decebel had stopped her just as she started to climb the stairs. He'd grinned that rare smile he saved just for her and asked her to come with him. They had exited the front door of the Tavern and turned left, heading down the snow-covered street of the small village. Finally, just at the edge of village, Decebel pulled her in the direction of small cottage. It was tiny, and so cute.
Jen could see a soft glow flickering from the window. When Decebel went to open the door Jen pulled on his arm.
"Isn't this someone's home? We can't just walk up in there," Jen whispered.
Decebel winked at her. "I've got it covered, baby. Trust me."
He turned away from her and flipped the latch on the door handle and pushed the door open. Warm air brushed across Jen's cold cheeks and she shivered from the sensation. Decebel led her inside and Jen's eyes widened at the scene before her. Her mouth dropped open as she turned in a slow circle, taking in every detail of the enchanted room before her.
The first thing Jen noticed was the twinkling lights that ran around the ceiling of the room. She didn't see any cords, or anything that would cause them to light up. There were vines of white flowers that ran across the ceiling, some hanging down in places, creating a canopy above them. To the left of the front door was a small fireplace ablaze with warm, dancing flames. In front of the fireplace was a pallet made from several thick blankets, and there were two fluffy pillows on top. Her stomach growled when she saw a blanket surrounded in pillows with fruit and cheese and small cuts of meat on a platter. There were two glasses filled with a purple liquid.
Jen looked up when Decebel cleared his throat. The look on his face told Jen that he was unsure of what she thought.
She smiled at him. "You did this for us?"
"I had a little help from a certain Fae," he admitted.
"It's amazing, Dec."
"Are you hungry?" He nodded in the direction of the blanket with the platter on it.
Jen nodded and let Decebel pull her over to the blanket. He helped her remove the coat she was wearing and, once she was sitting on the blanket, Decebel reached over and pulled her shoes and socks off for her. Jen admitted she was feeling quite special as he took care of her.
"You are special," he told her as he held out a cracker with cheese and meat on it. Instead of taking it from him, she leaned forward until she was on her hands and knees and wrapped her mouth around the food he offered. As she pulled back, enjoying the taste of the food, she shivered at the growl from Decebel.
"It's going to be like that, is it?" Decebel's voice was a sensual caress against her already too sensitive skin.
Back and forth they fed and teased each other. The tension between them was so heavy that Jen thought she might die from waiting.
"Have you had enough?" he asked her. The double meaning was written all over his beautiful face.
"Of the food, most definitely. Of you, never." She stood and moved toward the pallet in front of the fireplace, looking over her shoulder to see him watching her with predatory eyes. He stood from his sitting position and stalked her, his glowing amber eyes never leaving hers. Once he was standing in front of her, Decebel brushed some wisps of hair away from her face.
He murmured her name as he wrapped one hand behind her shoulders and the other around her waist. He lowered his head and just before their lips came in contact, he paused. He took a deep breath, taking in her vanilla and cinnamon scent.
"You are mine," he breathed against her waiting mouth, "my best friend, my lover, my wife, my mate."
Before Jen could respond, Decebel's lips were on hers. He did not start slowly or gently. This kiss was full of passion, built-up desire, and longing. He groaned and lifted her, wrapping her legs around his waist. He lowered them to the pallet and laid her on her back.
As he pulled back from the kiss, Jen growled at him. She opened her eyes and smiled at the desire she saw smoldering in his.
"Baby, your eyes are glowing," Decebel told her as he leaned down and began placing small kisses on her face, her neck, and collarbones. Every so often he would swirl his tongue across her skin and chuckle when it drew a gasp from her. He began to slowly undress her, never taking his eyes from hers, and while he made love to her for the first time he told her in every language he knew just what she meant to him. Soft whispers against her ear, murmured words on her skin as he kissed her. Jen had never felt more loved or treasured in her life.
"Will always be like that?" Jen asked him sometime later. The firelight danced across Decebel's face as he lay on his back. Jen was propped up on her elbow, watching him.
He rolled over to his side, mirroring her posture, and ran a finger down where his markings adorned her skin. She shivered.
"I hope so. I hope you always respond to me just like this."
Jen's brow drew together as she looked into his eyes. "Why tonight?"
"If it goes badly tomorrow, I want to go knowing you were mine in every way." He grinned sheepishly. "Kind of selfish of me, right?"
Jen laughed and Decebel loved the glow that seem to stroke over her bare skin.
"Well, if this is what I get when you're being selfish, then by all means." Jen's smiled, then her brow drew together in thought.
"Can I ask you a question, Dec?"
"Anything," he told her as he tucked her hair behind her ear.
"Does it bother you that you didn't have a choice when it came to me?"
Decebel frowned at her. "What do you mean I didn't have a choice?"