King of the Seditious

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Challenging Me in My Lair

His look was shrewd. Blue eyes cutting her, starting with her toes and dragging up her length to the pulled down hood. “Remember, I’m the one that knows what’s you keep so carefully guarded beneath that oversized green cloak.”

Giving her his back he strode around to the otherside and leaned on a stool to resume his drink.

“Don’t make me call my men to remove you.” She warned.

From the corner of her eye, Dimurah caught the barmaid, Belline, filling his drink. Thinking Dimurah wasn’t looking.

“You know better than to threaten me…You’re going to regret ever saying that.” His blue gaze slitted.

“I will summon them!”

“Why?” He twisted to give the four of them a bored glance. “Do you wish me to kill them? Remember,” He lifted a finger, tsking again. “exactly how much you missed the last ones.”

“There’s too many. Even for you.” She said acidly.

“I don’t know how many that is. So you most certainly don’t...” He took a heavy dram from his newly filled tankard. Dismissing her.

Belline, the barmaid offered him a sly smile. Taking in his sinewed frame and long blonde hair, twisted and woven with wooden kill beads. Framing a hard, square face dominated by virulent blue eyes. Her gaze lit with interest.

He heard the whisper of Murah’s cloak and knew he could’ve caught the blade. Instead, he let her draw close enough to lean over the counter next to him. Pressing it to his throat.

“This is the game you want to play?” He queried blandly. “In-front of all these people?”

His gaze scoured her furious face.

Rounded cheeks, tinged gold from being sun-warmed. Large blue eyes. Dark lashes framing them. A rounded chin and a small beckoning mouth. Red curls creeping from her hood to tease her face. Flushed in her ire.

He leisurely lifted his tankard for another drink. Swallowing despite the nick of her weapon. Setting it down, he slid his gaze to her. Noticing the heat of a rounded breast smashed against his bicep.

He gave it a meaningful look then whispered for her ears alone. “Come closer, Murah.”

“Get out of my alehouse.” She seethed.

“The one I gave you?” He whispered into her face before staring ahead again. “I warned you.”

“The one I’ve built!” She objected. Fist shaking around the blade’s handle.

He pushed his tankard further away. Shifting his weight to turn his body to her without moving his neck. He gave her his full attention. Setting the intensity of his blue gaze back on her. “What are you doing, Murah? You know better.”

She hissed as he moved. Body tensing and the blade pressing his windpipe.

“This is my alehouse. I rule here.” Her defiant eyes flashed, and she was brilliantly beautiful.

He already envisioned sinking himself into her warmth. He watched her lick her lips as her mouth went dry.

He let the stare renowned through the country, delve into her. Until she was nervous. Until she was shifting, swallowing hard.

And finally, she blinked.

***

It took him that long to bat her forearm down away from his neck. Shoving it hard enough between their bodies to send her into a half turn against him, he jerked his hand around her forearm to hook the hilt. Wrenching her wrist up toward her body until her grip broke and he freed the blade into his fist. As her cloak whipped out behind her. He caught a fistful of it with his other hand. And yanked her the opposite direction she’d been spinning. Making it impossible for her to catch her footing, until she faced away from him.

His muscled arm snaking her waist. He used her own dagger against her throat.

“You know my rules…” He whispered into her hair. “Yet you bring me a dagger…”

He paused thoughtfully. “Always a blade on you, isn’t there?” He splayed the hand already flattened over her stomach, to ensure the reach of his fingertips grazed high and low, checking for weapons.

She swallowed hard. The dagger pressing into the soft tissue of her throat.

“Now.” He tilted his head around to see her face over her shoulder. “Whose guild is this?”

A few people in the tavern gasped. Shocked at the blur of aggression.

Others quieted. Those who knew Savage Jack.

“He’s so bloody fast!” The newcomer from earlier murmured to his friend.

That is Savage Jack.” His cohort responded. “He always moves like that. She’s lucky he hasn’t gutted her yet.”

“What do you want?” Dimurah choked around her own dagger.

Some people laughed coldly. Amused he had the upper hand on her.

He pressed the blade into her tender skin just enough to pierce the surface. Making one thick drop of blood well as she’d done to him.

“Bend her over the bar, Savage Jack!”

He barely spared the stranger an annoyed glance.

“I want what I always want, Murah.” He whispered along her hair. He caught her hood and yanked it back. Revealing the riot of red curls pouring down her back. And sparking blue eyes, lighter than his. He announced. “You flat on your back in my tent. Moaning my name.”

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