A witchs hearts desire t.., p.2
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       A Witch's Hearts Desire (The Anthology Novella Series Book 1), p.2

           Darlene Kuncytes
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  “Well, in case you haven’t noticed, Dracula,” she said, her brows furrowing slightly. “I kind of like old things. My whole damn house and shop are filled with them!”

  “Well then, we’d better get started.” He chuckled, choosing to ignore her little dig.

  Serena full out scowled at him, her lips cutting across her face in a straight, tight line. “What’s your name?” She bit out suddenly. “I mean… since you already know mine and all.”

  “Dante Marx,” he replied evenly and she felt a shiver run across her. Strong, sexy, just like him. Oh, crap, she really needed to stop this! She shook her head and crossed her arms over her chest. “Well, Dante Marx- I, unlike you... need to sleep. So I’m really sorry about your bad luck, but there will be no searching tonight.”

  Dante laughed again, smooth, husky and masculine and Serena cringed. “Well, then we might have a bit of a problem,” he replied with what could only be described as an amused snort and she felt her irritation only increasing. “I work better at night.”

  Dante found his gaze drifting down to where her arms were crossed under her more than ample chest and felt a surge of heat rush through him. Christ, this woman was getting into his head. This was just not what he needed. He wanted to get in, help her find whatever the hell it was that she was supposed to find, and get the hell out.

  His smile faded as he realized that for some incomprehensible reason, with her… he really didn’t want that at all. He actually found himself looking forward to spending time with her, getting to know what made her tick. How messed up was that?

  She cleared her throat when she caught him staring at her chest, and his eyes snapped back up to hers. Was that heat he saw in her cheeks? She lifted a brow and glared at him, tapping her foot impatiently.

  “Listen,” she said, her expression dark and unwavering. “I’ve had one hell of a shitty day. I’m tired. I almost got run down by some asshole that desperately needs his license revoked, and now I find out that I have to go on some lame ass treasure hunt like the damn Goonies’! And… with a blood sucker, no less! I mean, how am I expected to trust that what you’re telling me is the truth? I’ve never even met you before tonight! I need some sleep, if for nothing else than to clear my head a bit. Can’t we just do this tomorrow night? Is one day really going to matter all that much?”

  Dante was silent only a moment before he nodded, conceding to her wishes. She did look tired, he thought… and she had had a whole hell of a lot happen to her tonight. She needed to rest; recharge and wrap her head around everything that had happened tonight.

  Dante’s expression darkened slightly and he berated himself for even caring if she got any rest, but for some unexplainable reason he did. Mother of God, what in the hell was wrong with him? He was becoming soft. Good God! He stood and waited for her to follow suit.

  “They told me to tell you that Amelia was a sister to them.”

  Serena gasped… her Grandmother? Oh, crap! Now, it all was beginning to make some sense. Her Grandmother had always told her stories of how she possessed keys that were special to their kind, but as to what they were… well; she had never bothered to share that little tidbit of information with Serena. Thanks a lot, Gran.

  In the supernatural world, anything could be considered a blasted key! Anything from an actual key to a dog’s freaking chew toy. Ugh! This just royally sucked out loud!

  “I promise,” she said finally, with a tired little sigh. “We can start tomorrow night. At least now I have an idea as to what stuff we need to look through.” The thought of having to go through all of the crap that her Grandmother had left her was a bit daunting, but at least it was a start. “Tomorrow, I promise… I’m all yours.”

  Dante felt his entire body jerk with her words; knowing that she hadn’t meant them the way that they had sounded, but damn… all his. That thought made his gut clench, as well as another part of his anatomy and he knew that he had better take his leave… and soon.

  “What I mean is… I’ll help all that I can.” She stammered quickly, that color in her cheeks deepening and he couldn’t help but to find it absolutely enchanting. “I have a ton of my grans stuff here and at the shop.”

  “Very well, then. I’ll contact the crones and see if there is anything else that I can get out of them. Something that might just give us some clue as to what we are looking for.” With that he walked over to the door and pulled it open. “Good night, Serena. I’ll see you tomorrow.”

  Chapter 2

  Serena was just about to close up for the evening the following day, when the bell over the door tinkled. She glanced up to see Dante walk through the entrance and her mouth dropped open with a will of its own. He was dressed in a pair of faded blue jeans and a black t-shirt that made him look like something straight out of GQ Magazine! Damn!

  She pursed her lips as she tried to control her suddenly raging libido. It was as if the temperature had risen at least ten degrees all of a sudden. “He bites,” she quietly reminded herself.

  “Only if you’d like me to,” Dante replied with a grin as he gracefully glided over to her and she damned his supersonic hearing. What an ass!

  “What are you doing here?” She bit out, much more harshly than she had intended; but this man just completely upset her balance. Lord, all it took was just being near him and she was suddenly spinning out of control. And, if nothing else… Serena liked order.

  Yes; she conceded with a frown; Vampires were usually very good-looking, sexy creatures, as she knew all too well, but there was just something so different about this one. And that realization unnerved her. She found herself wanting to get to know him; and that was a huge no-no in her book.

  “You know, bloodsucker,” she huffed with distaste. “You’d blend in a whole hell of a lot better if you wore a damn jacket like a real person. It’s forty degrees outside.” She wasn’t necessarily angry with him; it was more that she was angry with the way her body responded to his bulging muscles and firm, tapered waist. Dear God, the man was liquid sin. And, she would bet her crystal ball that the Vamp was packing at least a six-pack under that damn t-shirt of his!

  “Yeah, well,” he laughed, and she found herself really liking the sound of it. It was warm and smoky… genuine, “the cold doesn’t really bother me, and I don’t really care much about blending in. But, to answer your first question; I figured that we might as well start looking here. You had mentioned that you kept a lot of your Grandmother’s stuff here.” He replied, glancing around only a moment before his gaze swept back to her.

  Serena sighed heavily and shrugged her shoulders. Oh, why the hell not? The sooner they found this supposed key, the sooner they could both get on with their lives. Or, in his case… un-life.

  She walked out from behind the counter and over to the door, locking it. When she brushed past Dante, she caught a whiff of his scent; strong, spicy and amazing and she felt herself shiver. She suddenly found herself wondering if his skin would taste as good. Oh, Hell and damnation! She really needed to get a grip!

  “Did you happen to speak to these Witches who hired you?” She asked, trying hard to keep her mind on the matters at hand and not on how perfect the line of his jaw was… or how edible his ass looked in those skin-tight jeans! Guh!

  Dante watched as the comely little witch moved nervously around the shop, her eyes stealing glances when she thought that he wasn’t looking. He could feel the tension rolling off of her in waves, and wondered what he could to do ease it for her. For some, unfathomable reason; he didn’t want her to fear him.

  “All that they would say was that it is something that your Grandmother would have held precious.”

  Serena walked over and stood in front of him, her brows knit in concentration as she gazed up at him. “Hmm, well. That could be a number of things. I don’t know how to break it to you; but my grandmother would have fit right in on an episode of Hoarders. Everything she owned was precious to her.” She laughed fondly, and graced him with a smile th
en that would have very nearly taken his breath away if he had needed to breathe, that was. Her lovely face positively glowed when she smiled, and he found that he wanted nothing more at that moment than to lower his head and kiss those full, sweet, beautiful lips of hers. Just to see if she tasted as good as she looked.

  He brusquely pushed the idea away and took a step back from her, feigning interest in a cherry wood box that sat on the counter and feeling like a complete and utter ass.

  “I suppose we can start in the back room,” she suggested softly. “I’ve stored quite a bit of my Grans stuff back there.” She turned and started walking, glancing back at Dante to make sure that he was following her and she couldn’t help the smile that twitched at her lips when she realized that he was staring at her ass. Well, I guess turnabout is fair play.

  “That’s the last piece back here that was hers,” Serena murmured tiredly. She sat Indian style on the floor of the storage room, and handed the vase that she held out to Dante to put in the - Not a damn thing happened pile.

  Serena stretched; her hands going to the small of her back as she arched backwards. They had been at it for four solid hours, and she was tired, and stiff… and damned hungry. All she could think about at the moment was a big, juicy burger and some greasy fries.

  She groaned as her muscles pulled and protested and turned to find Dante staring at her, his mouth hanging open. “What?” She asked, wondering just what in the hell his problem was.

  In the four hours that they had sat there going through her Grandmother’s things; they had built up a guarded, yet friendly rapport. She found that he was extremely easy to talk to; although when he questioned her as to why she had such a deep dislike and mistrust for Vampires, she had quickly changed the subject. There was no way that she was going to get into all of that with him. But now, he was looking at her as if she had suddenly sprouted a second head!

  He seemed to snap out of whatever funk he had been in, and gave her a quick smile, setting the vase that she had handed him down into a nearby box. He stood and held out his hand, helping her to her feet. She moaned as she stood, her legs having fallen asleep hours ago. She stumbled slightly, and before she knew what was happening, she found herself being pulled up into Dante’s arms; his body firmly pressing itself against hers. Oh, Holy shit!

  Dante pulled Serena up against his chest as she teetered unsteadily, and immediately felt an electrical current of white-hot desire shoot through him, right down to his very bones at the contact of their bodies. He likened it to being hit by a God damned lightning bolt. Holy Hell!

  It wasn’t bad enough that he had just about popped a gasket when she had arched her back, attempting to stretch her tired muscles and her perfect chest had lifted in the air, her shimmering ebony hair cascading down her back in smooth, gentle waves. But now, having her pressed up against him? Hell; that was pure unadulterated torture and he once again felt his body responding.

  He heard her small gasp and looked down to find her staring up at him, her amazing blue eyes wide and startled, and he knew in that moment that she had felt it too. He knew that she felt this pull between them that was becoming damned near impossible to fight. Before he could stop himself; his head lowered and his lips brushed against hers. Softly at first, but after that first taste of her sweet mouth, he couldn’t help but to tilt his head slightly and deepen it. He needed more.

  His tongue swept across the seam of her lips; begging for entrance, and when she obliged only a moment later with a soft moan, low in her throat, he thought for certain that he would burst into flame right then and there. Dear God, I have finally died and gone to Heaven, he thought with a clenching in his chest.

  His fingers fanned out against her back and he pulled her closer, glorying in the feel of her soft curves pressed against the hard plains of his body. So different… yet they fit together perfectly.

  The hands on her back slid down to the curve of her backside, pressing her against his rapidly growing erection as he ground himself against her. Dear God, Dante thought with a soft growl, she was amazing. She tasted like a warm summer breeze.

  Dante knew the moment that reality hit Serena. He felt her tense up and push against his chest. She pulled away and quickly turned her back to him, obviously not wanting him to see the reaction that she was having; but the quick, jerky gasps of her breath and the rapid beating of her pulse told him everything. Not to mention to heady scent of her arousal. Christ, he was as hard as granite and knew without a doubt that she was as turned on as he was. Just what in the hell was wrong with him?

  “Maybe… maybe we should call it quits for tonight,” she choked out; her voice incredibly soft and husky, and he felt his manhood twitch slightly, and took a deep breath. Shit! This woman made him lose all sense of what he was doing.

  “Yes, that might be a good idea.” He followed her as she grabbed her purse from the desk and walked to the back door, yanking it open. Once he had walked out behind her, she quickly flipped off the lights and hastily locked up as if she couldn’t get out of there fast enough.

  “Well, thank you for helping tonight,” she husked, that damn throaty tone of hers shooting straight to his already painful groin. “I’m sorry that we didn’t have any luck. We… we can start at the house tomorrow, if that’s okay with you.” She took another shaky breath and tried to give him a smile, but she wouldn’t look up at him. “Good night, then.” With that she turned and started walking toward home, but stopped when she realized that he was still right behind her. “What are you doing?”

  “Walking you home,” he replied matter-of-factly, as if it was the most natural thing in the world.

  “You don’t need to do that,” she argued softly, but Dante just gave her a heart-stopping grin and continued walking. And, if truth were told, he wasn’t ready to say good night to her yet… just a little more, he told himself.

  As they turned the corner of her street, Serena felt a tiny chill creep along her spine. She suddenly felt as if she was being watched once again, and the hair at the nape of her neck rose up.

  Dante touched her arm, causing her to stop and turn toward him. Her eyes darted around the street, but there was nothing.

  “Serena, what’s the matter?” He asked gently, and her gaze snapped up to his.

  “It’s… nothing,” she breathed, not quite sure if she believed it or not. Something was definitely off.

  Dante’s eyes narrowed as he studied her in silence, a muscle in his jaw twitching slightly. “Please, don’t lie to me,” he murmured.

  “It’s just that I get… I get these creepy feelings when supernatural creatures are near,” she explained softly, a tinge of annoyance in her voice. Or, was that embarrassment?

  “I’m near you,” he responded softly, and her eyes widened. “Couldn’t it just be me that you are picking up on?”

  She shook her head. “No; you really don’t creep me out… anymore. Well, at least not that much, anyway.”

  Dante laughed, his eyes gleaming slightly. “Well, I am glad to hear that. Come on; let’s get you home and safely inside.”

  He took her by the elbow and headed toward her Victorian, his senses on full alert. He had been much too busy admiring her curvy form to pay any attention to the warning bells going off that there was another Supernatural in the general vicinity. Luckily, she hadn’t been as distracted as he. And he cursed at himself under his breath. He seemed to lose all sense when he was near her, and it was seriously beginning to piss him off the hell off.

  He walked her to her door and leaned against the frame; suddenly feeling like a gangly teenager out on his first date. Dear God! Why did this woman affect him so much?

  “Well, thank you again for helping out tonight. Good night, Dante.” She whispered, not daring to look him in the eye.

  Dante curled his fingers around her chin and lifted her face, his gaze locking with hers. They stayed that way for several earth-shattering moments, neither one of them seemingly able to speak. Finally, he close
d the gap between them and took her lips, chastely, softly; yet with promise. He didn’t know what his kind had done to her, but he was sure as Hell going to find out and try to rectify her opinion.

  “I’ll see you tomorrow, Serena,” he husked.

  He opened her door and kissed her again, quickly on the corner of her mouth. “Lock your door.” He instructed softly and with that he dashed down the steps and was gone. Serena slipped through the entryway and shut the heavy oak door behind her, locking it as he had asked, then turning and falling back against it with a loud whoosh of breath.

  Dante watched the house from the shadows, the overwhelming urge to slip through her door and crawl into bed with her eating at his very soul it seemed. He didn’t know what it was about her, but he just couldn’t get her out of his mind. There was a pull to be near her that was just overwhelming him. It was a nagging desire deep in the recesses of his soul that he couldn’t explain.

  He scanned her yard quickly, noting with a hint of annoyance that he still sensed another Supernatural creature nearby, and there was no way in Hell that he was going to leave her unprotected.

  He glanced up to the second floor of the house, when a light went on, and he silently wondered if that were her bedroom. He watched as she walked over to the window and drew the drapes, closing her off from his view. Damn it! He really had to stop this bullshit! Just keep an eye out for anything strange, big boy, he warned himself. That’s all you need to do. The crones had insisted that he keep a close watch on her and he intended to do what he had been hired for. Kissing her had just been a damned fine added bonus. One that he realized with something that felt a whole hell of a lot like a fist to his chest, that he wanted more of. He cursed under his breath at himself as he watched the light go off and he tried to not imagine that glorious creature slipping into bed; but just couldn’t do it. The image burned his brain. Christ!

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