This is an adult series, and while the main core of it is Paranormal Suspense, there are distinctly adult situations involved, which are NOT suitable for viewing by all ages.
DISCLAIMER: This scene contains ADULT situations of a sexual nature. Reader discretion is advised.
Jesse Guardian did his best to stay out of the family business for years. Aware of the Para, but choosing to work in the “real world,” he stuck to evidence he could see, and crimes he could prevent or solve, as a homicide detective for the San Francisco PD. But when his love affair with an intoxicating, mysterious woman turned out to be a trap, the intervention of one man would change Jesse’s life forever. As he struggles with the monster he doesn’t want to become, he’ll turn to the family he avoided, and find himself in a struggle to save more than his mortal soul.
“Confrontations & Secrets” — Excerpt from DOUBLE TAKE (Guardians, Inc., Book #1) —
“Damn it, if you won’t let me help, I’ll do it myself.”
Those words plunged a knife of memory through Jesse, and the scar at his throat burned. He knew exactly how dangerous it was to tangle with something you didn’t understand. A year ago, that was him. Sick fear clawed through him at the image of Analeise laying helpless on some concrete floor, her life blood draining away. The icy terror of memory snapped him forward, and he latched onto her upper arm, hard.
“Don’t even think about it.”
She glared up at him, her awesome mocha eyes flashing with rage. “You don’t get a say, Mr. Guardian. She was my aunt. I’m not about to let her killer go free.”
He growled an oath beneath his breath. Infuriating woman! Her unwillingness to listen to reason twisted a knot of dread in his gut. He bit down on another oath. Regardless of how she twisted him inside-out, it was his responsibility to make sure she stayed safe. After all, she was a civilian. She had no idea what she was proposing.
“Ms. Claussen, it’s my job to find your aunt’s killer. This isn’t a normal criminal investigation. I can’t let you put yourself in danger by investigating something you know nothing about.”
Her eyes narrowed, and she yanked her arm from his grasp. She was furious, and he was certain she was about to give him a tongue-lashing and storm out in classic Prima Donna fashion. In his experience, most women were alike, when it came to throwing tantrums.
Analeise paced to the window, then back to the desk, to stop right in front of him, and her expression was one of internal conflict. That surprised him. Hell, it shocked him. Finally, she must have come to some conclusion, because she drew a deep breath, and enquired, “Just what, exactly, do I supposedly know nothing about?”
Aw, hell. He didn’t want to go there. At the moment, he’d settle for a tantrum, if it meant she didn’t look at him like he was as loony as the asshole who killed her aunt. But she asked the question, and her intractable expression said she wasn’t leaving the issue drop without an answer.
“The paranormal.” He winced as he muttered the word, but kept his gaze on her. Any sign of doubt from him, and she’d be convinced he was crazy.
“I see.” Her expression didn’t even flicker. Then, her cheeks still flushed with angry heat, she reached up and, before he even had an inkling what she planned to do, yanked open her shirt. “Does this look like nothing, Mr. Guardian?”
Jesse stared, slack-jawed, at her chest as his brain fogged and libido took over. She had lush breasts, displayed to perfection by a dark red demi bra. Her nipples puckered in the chill of the office air conditioner. He wanted to touch, and to hear her moan as he feasted on the exposed flesh. Hunger coiled in his gut, but instinctive wariness held him frozen. He had no idea why she took her shirt off. Before he made a move, he needed to know she was as turned on as he was.
He heard her breath hitch and lifted his gaze to hers, to see mortification flicker briefly. Damn it, what was she ashamed of? She was exquisite. Beneath his gaze, he watched her pupils dilate, and her lips part on an exhaled sigh, before her quiet, panting breaths filled his ears, and the scent of arousal and Analeise nearly drove him mad. He no longer cared if she was up to the same tricks as Natalya.
He stalked closer, until he held her trapped against the edge of his desk, her body trembling with the desire he saw reflected in her gaze. Bending closer, he breathed in, and the tangy, citrus scent of her wrapped around him. He heard the throb of blood in her veins, the pound of her heart beating in near-tandem with his own, and urges that both terrified and thrilled him twisted around inside his gut.
“Say my name,” he growled the words against her ear, unsure why it mattered so much that she did.
Her breath bated, then rushed out in a sigh. “Jesse, please…”
His hands bit into her hips as he dragged her against his body, even as he dropped his mouth to her exposed neck and breasts. He traced her throat with his mouth, devouring the scent and taste of her skin. Her nails bit into the back of his neck and shoulders through his shirt, and it was the sweetest pain he ever felt. He scraped his teeth over the sensitive column of her neck, careful not to draw blood for fear of turning heat into something infinitely darker.
He lifted her bodily onto his desk, nudging her thighs open with his legs as he did, then grasped her wrists and removed her hands from him, guiding them down and back, to rest on the desktop. Then, he backed off, gazing hungrily down at her where she sprawled on display before him. Her shirt hung open, her breasts now tight-tipped in passion as well as the cold, her pale skin hugged by all that dark red silk and lace. Her short skirt was hiked up around her hips, her legs splayed open to reveal another slash of dark red lace that barely covered her beneath the skirt.
The sound that hissed out from him wasn’t quite human, dragged from the primitive place where emotion and desire hid, until released. He reached out, nudged aside the strap and cup of her bra, exposing her right breast to study the purple, silver, and black tattoo there. It was an Ahnk, laid overtop a crescent moon. The mark of an Isian Coven. His gaze flew to hers, and he saw secrets, buried beneath the raw desire there. She was a witch.
Jesse’s head lowered, and he traced the image with his tongue, and heard her moan as her hips wriggled on his desktop. A feral smile tugged his lips as he continued his trek down, swiping his tongue across her distended nipple, then blowing on the damp peak.