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Close Encounter with Devereux . . .

He removed his black leather duster and threw it in a chair in the corner.

Enjoying the view of the physique that’d been hidden under the coat, I moved over to him and lightly kissed his lips. “Definitely yes.”

I opened a brand-new set of silk sheets I’d had for a long time but never used, while Devereux stripped off the old bedding.

Quite an efficient team, we smoothed on the new sheets, watching each other with hungry eyes.

“Do you have candles?” he asked.

Uh, did I? I thought for a moment and remembered which box in the closet I’d stashed them in. I wouldn’t tell him that I’d only bought them in case the electricity went out and I needed emergency light. I was trying to learn to keep my unromantic, nerdy explanations to myself. At least under certain conditions.

While I was in the closet I stepped out of the Miss Piggy slippers and put them back in their special place, next to my Glenda the Good Witch sandals.

Okay. So I did let my inner child out sometimes.

He took the candles and the holders I’d also retrieved, placed them on the nightstands on either side of the bed, and stood back, appreciating his handiwork. He pointed a finger at each of the candles and the wicks burst into flame.

He smiled at me and said out loud what I’d been thinking. “Indeed – more parlor tricks.”

I turned off the light switch on the wall and basked in the lovely glow of the candles. The soft illumination was the perfect setting for Devereux. His eyes sparkled, his hair was a shining radiance, and his skin assumed the hues of the candlelight.

He stepped over to the window and closed the blinds, then circled back around to the door and silently sealed it. Gliding over to me, he gently released my hair from the ponytail and eased the long curls down over my breasts.

“Your hair is beautiful.” He nestled his face in it and inhaled the fragrance, then ran his fingers through it. “You are beautiful. I had given up hope of ever finding you. And now you are here. Now you are mine.”

“I’m yours? What does that mean?”

“It means we belong to each other. We always have. I want to share every part of myself with you, and I want to know every aspect of you. I am so happy you have finally come to me. I have been lost without you.”

I started to question his assumptions, and he silenced me with a kiss.

He reluctantly pulled away and leaned against the wall to balance himself while he removed his boots. He pulled his shirt off over his head in one slow, elegant motion.

Vampire Chippendales.

Even though I’d seen him without his shirt before, the effect in the candlelight was almost overwhelming. The muscles of his shoulders, arms, and abdomen were perfectly chiseled, a magnificent work of art in flesh and bone. I started to wonder what the odds were of a human being so exquisitely built, then remembered he wasn’t human. Not even close.

But that didn’t matter. In a very short, intense time period, I’d gone from thinking Devereux was mentally ill – an unfortunate having psychotic delusions about being a vampire – to waiting breathlessly for that very same vampire to fill me with what was already making its presence known inside his tight leather pants.

I splayed my hands on his chest, relishing the firm warmth of him, and moved close enough to take one of his nipples into my mouth. He moaned and relaxed his head back, embracing me with his strong arms.

I started to unbutton the waistband of his pants and he covered my hand with his.

“Wait. We must remove your shirt first.”

Vampire rules? I didn’t ask why. He lifted my hair back behind my shoulders and unbuttoned my pajama top. Letting the slippery silk fall away, he used his fingers to guide the fabric from my shoulders and down my arms. He bent and slid his face over my breasts, taking one nipple at a time into his mouth with a gentle sucking motion. He cupped both breasts in his hands and laid tiny kisses all over them before using his tongue to harden my nipples to painful, throbbing points.

He straightened, lifted the pentagram necklace, and brought it to his lips. He kissed the center of the circular design then replaced it, all the time gazing into my eyes.

I already ached for him, and couldn’t imagine being able to hold out much longer. My knees were barely functional.

He stepped away and studied me, the expression on his face reflecting the maelstrom of feelings and desires he couldn’t hide.

He caressed my breasts again and said, “You are very lush for such a slender woman. In all my eight hundred years, yours are the most magnificent breasts I have ever seen. I shall never tire of touching them, of sucking them.”

I’d say he hasn’t gotten out much if my breasts are the cream of the crop, but that’s probably not true. I’ll just enjoy the ride.

He demonstrated as I fisted my hands in his hair. After a few delicious seconds, he kissed his way back to my lips.