The Price of Vengeance

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Nim sat near the fire listening to the soft crackling. Taking in the scent of burning logs and a coming rain. Though she dreaded its arrival, for now the lull was peaceful.

Disseus had not said a word more to her since their argument and subsequent loving this evening. He somehow managed to make even his silence toward her hostile.

Yet she preferred that over his biting comments. Or so it seems by her utter lack of conversation.

Right now, he turned a couple plump rabbits on a spit. Occasionally, his eyes slid sideways to glower at her.

Although Nim had expected his impatience and irritation, she’d not anticipated blatant animosity. In-fact she’d only rarely seen him lose temper. Especially when he was permitted to sate all that rage within her body.

Lonnix and Almora had continued talking to him as though oblivious to his sour mood.

Nim was huddled under her cloak shivering.

She’s always cold at night. Disseus thought in annoyance. Wondering why she’d not brought more clothes or a thicker bedroll. Her bath in the chilly lake probably didn’t help either.

That was her own fool decision. He reminded himself. Stamping down the flickers of sympathy easing through him.

Don’t think like that. She doesn’t deserve it.

The howling wind certainly didn’t do her any favors.

He watched her glancing around and knew that getting closer to the fire wasn’t an option for her. The only opening was a narrow gap between Almora and Disseus.

She’ll not lay that close to me. She knows it’d give me too easy access to her. And he wouldn’t bother even denying to himself that he’d stay up all night to plant seeds in her.

To make her pay. To make her sore.

She deserves that much at least…

He looked around and knew his body would prove the hottest one in the group. Being a Harbinger meant his skin was always a higher temperature.

But she’ll not consider cuddling me as an option. Annoyance made him bite roughly into a bit of rabbit meat. Checking to see if it was done.

No. He spit the rubbery piece aside. Something he’d have clearly seen if he’d been paying a whit of attention to what he cooked rather than a tiny, cold woman.

Her only other option was to be as far from Disseus as possible which would place her crowding Almora. Who, even now, watched Disseus through flirtatiously lowered lids.

Nope. She’ll not be doing that either.

Finally, the meat had finished cooking.

When he began dividing the hunks of rabbit, he handed Nim the upper portion containing more meat. He seemed not to even notice the small kindness as he took a smaller piece for himself.

He looked at Lonnix as the jovial little man entertained them with a tale.

Nim stared at his hand holding the decadent bit of tender meat. She hesitated only a moment, her stomach wouldn’t allow any longer.

Quickly reaching for the food he proferred, she accidentally grasped his hand. Though she immediately pulled away, he shot her a startled look.

His surprise gave way to irritation. He turned a withering look on her. As if she’d purposely caressed him. As though she’d insulted him.

Turning from him, she ate peacefully beneath the curtain of her hair.

Like a little animal hoarding food.

Her profile was beautiful, even lowered. The firelight caught her red hair and turned it a satin shade of ruby. Not orange like so many redheads. But true, dark red.

Red as passion itself.

She made a sound. A blissful moan as the food began to reach her hollow stomach.

He winced. Giving her an aching look. “Mind your tongue!”

“What? I said nothing.” She was startled. Tilting up to peer at him over her shoulder. Green eyes huge and glittering in the firelight.

“I’ve heard that mewling sound before from your lips.” He growled. “Many, many times.” While she lay beneath him. That porcelain skin his to feast on. The lovely body warm and supple writhing against him.

Wide eyed she slowly set her piece of meat aside her gaze steady on him and movements designed to keep from provoking him.

Still he watched her like a predator with an eye locked on prey. Aye, I’ve heard her make that sound.

“I’ll hear it again too.” He vowed. Even if it was the last thing he did.

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