I’d wanted truth and I’d wanted justice, but Trevor’s death was still tragic. Like Mark’s, his life meant no less than anyone else’s despite his transgressions.

The sound of rain falling filled the room when Blake came through the door. He was soaked through. I stood, frozen in place. He shut the door and leaned against it, his chest heaving under his breaths.


The pleading in his voice made me run to him then. Our bodies crashed, and I wrapped my arms around him. I slid my hands through his damp hair, curving over the nape of his neck and down his chest where his shirt clung to him. My heart raced and swelled. I whispered his name, like a dream. He was home. Thank God, he was home.

He held me so tightly around my ribs it almost hurt, but I didn’t care. I held him back. When I finally pulled away, my heart twisted at the sight of those incredible green eyes boring into me, brewing with emotion. I feathered my fingers over his lips, over the prickly hair along his jaw. My love . . .

Seeing him had sent a rush of adrenaline through my body, warming me, but Blake was still cold. The moisture from his clothes had started to seep into mine.

“You’re soaking wet.”

I pushed back a little, separating us enough to unbutton his shirt. I skated my palms down his chest and back up, pushing the wet garment over his shoulders. He wrenched it off the rest of the way and pulled me back to him roughly, capturing my mouth in a savage kiss. He was all taste and need, and I was engulfed in it, unable to feel or see anything but his urgency, his all-consuming presence. My pulse hammered in my veins, but he still trembled against me.

I broke the contact, breathless but scared for him. “Blake, you’re shaking.”

“Doesn’t matter,” he murmured, moving his hands all over me.

I put my hands over his, trying to slow him down.

“You’re going to get sick, Blake. Let’s get you warm and dry.”

He stilled, and the fire in his eyes blazed. “I need you . . . please.”

The desperation in his voice destroyed me, and I wondered if the cold was making him tremble against me. Whatever it was, I wanted to take that look away, and whatever pain had caused it.

I nodded quickly, and then his mouth was at my neck, sucking and biting. I felt the edge in every touch as liquid desire snaked through me. He pushed my shirt up and over my shoulders. Tugging at my jeans, he got them past my hips before I stopped him.

“Let’s go upstairs,” I said.

I led him toward the stairs. My breath caught when he came at me again. Tangled in each other’s embrace, we almost made it.

“Here,” he rasped.

We stumbled at the first step, and he took us both down to the floor. His hands were everywhere.

“Now.” He yanked my jeans and panties off and hauled me over to him so I straddled his hips.

He pulled me down against his chest, anchored me to his mouth, and ravaged me with one breathless kiss after the next. A knot of heat grew within me, starting low in my belly and weaving down my limbs and to the throb between my legs. Desire was thick in my veins.

“Tell me what you need, Blake.” My body was soaring under his touch and I was racing for more.

Raw emotion flashed behind his eyes. “You. You’re the only one I need. You’re the only one in this whole goddamn world I need.”

Ripping open his fly, he shoved his jeans down just past his hips. He grasped his firm length and lowered me down onto him. My head fell back at the sweet pleasure. Lifting his hips, he rooted deeply, joining us completely.

A hoarse cry tore from him. One that brought tears to the corners of my eyes. I could feel his pain, his struggle.

Eyes closed, jaw tight, he began to move me over his cock. I clenched against his penetration, overwrought and aroused. Pain hit my knees with every thrust, but I didn’t care. I only cared that we were connected, loving one another, giving each other what we needed.

He worked me over him in urgent glides. I met his pace, churning my hips to feel him everywhere. He bucked up and held me firmly, fusing us together with vigorous, shattering drives. Every one struck at the heart of me, and I cried out. The sound echoed off the walls and melted into the next desperate cry that left my lips as he claimed me over and over.

I trembled, mindless in this rapture.

“Erica . . .” He wet his lips.

His hands left my hips and trailed down my arms. Our fingers threaded hotly together, and I leaned down, bringing us chest to chest. A searing kind of energy radiated there and everywhere our bodies touched.

I’d never experienced anything this intense in my entire life. And I was lost in it, fully submerged.

Our gazes locked, and the intensity in his eyes seized my heart.

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