Challenging saber, p.17
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       Challenging Saber, p.17

           S. E. Smith
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  He ignored the soft chuckles around him and pulled back far enough to look down into her face to make sure that she was alright. Seeing her shining eyes and happy grin, he bent and captured her lips in a passionate kiss. He reluctantly pulled back when he felt a tap on his shoulder.

  “I might remind you where we are,” Hunter informed him in exasperation. “Hello, Taylor.”

  “Hi Hunter,” Taylor grinned. “I’m glad you aren’t dead.”

  Hunter chuckled. “I am, as well, Taylor,” he replied dryly.

  Saber released Taylor’s legs so that she could slide down his length and back to the floor. He took his rifle back from Hunter and wrapped his arm around Taylor’s small waist. He could feel her looking around with a frown.

  “Where’s Cain?” She asked.

  Saber’s arm tightened around her waist when Dagger explained that he didn’t make it. He could feel the tremble that swept through her slender body. He suddenly remembered her notepad that he had tucked in his shirt. He started to reach for it, then paused when he heard Razor talking.

  “The patrol that was following us was mostly made up of Waxians,” Razor explained when Maridi turned to look at them with concern.

  “Mostly,” Trig grunted in distaste. “There were three Drethulans with them.”

  “We thought that we had killed them, but the bastards don’t die very easily,” Ace added. “One came up behind Cain and struck him.”

  “Oh, poor Cain,” Taylor whispered, shaking her head.

  “They were more conditioned to survive the sand storm than the Waxians,” Dagger said. “I didn’t realize they could burrow under the sand the way they did.”

  “Neither did I,” Saber admitted.

  “Which is why each of the bases that have been set up are located in rock,” a male voice pointed out.

  “Father,” Maridi greeted, bowing to him.

  “Father!” Lonnie cried out, running to his father.

  “Londius,” the man said, bending down to pick up the boy and holding him before he looked at the odd group of warriors in front of him. “Thank you for saving my son. Maridi will show you where you can get cleaned up and eat. Once you have refreshed yourselves, I will meet with you.”

  “We left the transport at the entrance to the canyon,” Saber suddenly said in concern. “It might be seen by one of the numerous patrols.”

  “It has been taken care of, along with all tracks,” the male assured him. “I will meet with you soon.”

  “I told Maridi that you would be staying with me,” Taylor whispered, staring up at him. “I won’t take no for an answer.”

  Saber chuckled and hugged her to him. “Have you ever?” He teased as they began following Maridi through the hidden base.

  Chapter 24

  Saber followed Taylor when she veered off from the others. They walked down several corridors. Each one section was either still under construction or in use. He was impressed with the little that he saw. There were several species he was not familiar with and he paused to study them. One male turned to look at him when the person he was listening to stopped talking. A shiver of warning ran through Saber when he saw the icy blue in the male’s eyes swirl with color. He hoped to the Gods that Razor and the council knew what they were doing.

  “Where are we going?” Saber asked, frowning and turning in a circle when he saw several people from the Western region talking with a group from the East.

  Taylor glanced over her shoulder and smiled. “I was given a room in the lower section. Maridi said most of you would be in the upper level. It is still under construction in places, but that was the only other quarters available at the moment since the arrival of the new crew,” she explained.

  “What new crew?” Saber asked with a sense of growing worry. “What is going on?”

  Taylor paused and looked at Saber before shaking her head and pressing a kiss to his lips. The look in her eyes promised she would share what she knew the moment they were alone. He nodded, gripping her hand in one of his while his other hand held his laser rifle.

  “This place is huge,” Taylor said with a slight smile as she stepped into a lift. “Hang on, these things move pretty fast.”

  Saber wrapped his arm around her and stumbled slightly when the lift began to drop. Taylor held on to the bar behind him. She wasn’t kidding. It felt like his stomach was in his throat by the time the damn thing stopped.

  “That… is dangerous,” Saber grumbled as the doors opened.

  Taylor grinned up at him. “Lonnie and I rode it like a dozen times before Commander Atlas caught us,” she admitted, grabbing his hand and pulling him down the empty corridor.

  “Commander Atlas?” Saber asked.

  Taylor nodded, stopping in front of a door and swiping the door with her palm. “Lonnie and Maridi’s father. He is in charge of the Dises V rebellion. He told me that you were okay,” she added before stepping inside the room.

  “How did he know?” Saber demanded, following her into the room. “What is going on, Taylor?”

  Taylor turned the moment the door closed behind him and wrapped her arms around his neck. He leaned his rifle next to the door and wound his arms around her, pulling her close. For a moment, he didn’t care about anything but the fact that she was safe.

  Taylor released a deep sigh before leaning back to look up at him. “Razor was right,” she whispered. “The Drethulans are preparing for war and they aren’t the only ones.”

  “How…,” Saber started to say before his words were silenced by Taylor’s lips.

  A groan escaped him when she threaded her fingers through his hair. A small tremor shook her body. It took a moment for him to realize that it was a soft giggle. He reluctantly pulled back and raised an eyebrow at her.

  “I don’t want to talk about what the future might hold right now. I want to talk about the present. You have sand in your hair,” she whispered.

  A soft chuckle escaped Saber. “That tends to happen when you are buried in a sandstorm,” he said.

  “Come on. I know how to fix that,” she replied with a grin.

  “I bet you do,” Saber muttered, reaching for the fastening on his shirt. “Oh, I found this, as well.”

  Taylor’s eyes widened when she saw him pull her writing pad out of his shirt. A rosy blush rose up her neck and into her cheeks when she saw him open it to the list she was making. Biting her lip, she tilted her head and gave him a mischievous grin.

  “I take it you read it,” she murmured, reaching up to play with the end of her braid.

  “I want you to show me how much you like being on top,” he ordered in a husky voice.

  Taylor’s face lit up. “I thought you’d never ask,” she teased.

  Saber’s eyes remained glued to Taylor as they both stripped out of their clothes. He started to reach down and remove the brace on his right leg, but stopped when Taylor ran her fingers across his flat stomach. He saw her gaze was on the brace.

  “They gave it to you,” she whispered.

  “Yes,” he replied in a husky voice.

  She swallowed. “It’s still in prototype mode,” she continued, sliding her hand down over the fabric. “I got the idea from the technology they were using to help Hunter.”

  “That’s what they said,” Saber admitted, gritting his teeth. “Ah, Taylor...”

  Taylor’s eyes jerked up to meet his. “Does it hurt?” She asked with a worried frown.

  Saber gave her a crooked grin. “It doesn’t, but I do,” he said. “All I can think about is you on top.”

  “Oh… OH!” She mouthed before blushing again. “Right, shower first.”

  Saber looked up at the ceiling and breathed a sigh of relief; for the first time in years, he felt… normal. Yes, they were in a strange base. Yes, their lives were still in danger.

  But, he reasoned, when hasn’t the universe been a slightly crazy place to live in?

  He looked down wh
en he felt the cool air of the room against his leg. A shiver ran through him when Taylor ran her fingers over the long scar on his leg before she tossed the brace onto a nearby chair.

  “Shower?” he asked tightly when she trailed her fingers up his leg to his hip.

  “This way,” she whispered.

  Saber’s gaze swept down over Taylor’s curvy figure. Deciding he had been restrained enough, he released a soft growl and started after her. Taylor shrieked and giggled as she hurried into the room.

  He watched as she stepped into the shower unit and turned. His hand tightened on the door frame and watched her as the unit came on. Water fell like rain from the top of the unit, catching on her eyelashes and running in small droplets down over her shoulders to her breasts.

  “You are so beautiful,” he whispered, gazing at her.

  “So are you,” she said, lifting her hand to him. “Catch me, Saber. Catch me and never let me go again.”

  Saber heard the pain in her voice and knew at that moment just how deeply he had hurt her. He reached for her hand, gripping it tightly in his as he stepped under the soft flow.

  His lips captured hers in a desperate kiss. This time, she opened for him. A soft moan escaped him when she responded to his passion. He loved the way Taylor kissed. It was not something the males and females of his species did. The Trivator’s form of kissing involved leaving a scent mark on their mate; but this, this was something far more tantalizing than leaving his scent against her skin.

  He broke the kiss to run his lips along her jaw down to her neck. He felt her body tremble and she tilted her head to give him free access to her. Her hands ran over his shoulders.

  “I’m going to put my mark right there,” he whispered against her throat. “When we return to Rathon, I ask that you accept my mark as your Amate, as I will wear yours if you accept my claim.”

  “You bet your ass I do,” Taylor replied, turning her head, her lips just a breath away from his.

  Saber’s laugh filled the shower unit as he picked her up and pressed her against the wall. Taylor kissed him deeply before resting her forehead against his and gazed into his eyes. She brushed her hands through his hair before cupping his cheeks.

  “I love you, Saber,” she murmured.

  Saber brushed a kiss against her lips. “I love you more, Taylor Sampson. You are a gift from the Goddess,” he said.

  “From the stars,” she replied, closing her eyes as he slid his hand over her ass. “I want to wash you.”

  Saber groaned and buried his face against her neck for a moment. He swore she was going to kill him. The idea of her hands touching him, running all over him, stroking…

  “Okay,” he said, using the term he had frequently heard on Earth.

  He gripped Taylor’s waist and slid her down his slick body. Stepping back, he swallowed and gritted his teeth when Taylor flashed him an innocent smile. His eyes followed her as she poured some of the cleanser into her hand and rubbed them together.

  Something tells me that payback is about to start, he thought vaguely just before she motioned for him to bend over so she could wash his hair.

  A soft moan escaped when he felt the way she was running her fingers across his scalp. He tilted his head back when she moved her hands down over his shoulders. It was as if she was making love to every inch of his body with her touch.

  His gaze followed her slender fingers as she ran the soapy solution over his skin. She paused and traced a light scar that he hadn’t bothered having removed. Her hand moved down to his and she leaned in to briefly kiss the mark she had traced before she lifted his hand and ran her hand over his palm.

  Soft skin against rough, just like Taylor and I, he thought as a sensual haze clouded his mind.

  Her fingers tangled with his for a moment before she trailed her fingers up the back of his hand and around to the sensitive flesh of his inner wrist. His breath caught as she stepped closer to him and ran her hand along the underside of his arm.

  “I love touching you,” she whispered as she caressed his chest. He had a light coating of hair across it. There was just enough that she could tangle her fingers in it. She had seen Hunter and Dagger. Both of them were devoid of hair on their chests. “For the last five years, I’ve touched you, but not in the way I wanted to. Not until….”

  Saber silenced her with his lips. He kissed her with a gentleness that brought tears to her eyes. He brushed them away with his lips before running his nose along her cheek up to the corner of her eye. With each stroke, he made sure that she could feel the love he had for her.

  “I was wrong,” he whispered. “You are such an incredible woman, Taylor. You capture the light and brighten the world with it. I was in a dark place, afraid to see that light vanish when you realized that I was not the warrior that I had been.”

  “But, you are,” she said, looking up at him with a tender smile. “You are my warrior. You caught me, Saber, and captured my heart that first day in the cafeteria.”

  “Goddess, Taylor, I don’t deserve you, but I swear I will never let you go,” Saber said in a voice hoarse with emotion.

  Taylor didn’t say anything; she showed him. Palming more soap, she ran her hands over his other arm and down his chest, reaching lower. Saber’s shuddering breath echoed throughout the bathroom when she wrapped her hands around his throbbing cock. His hands shot out and he plastered them against the walls of the shower.

  His eyelids drooped as he watched her caress him. His fingers curled when her hand slipped down to cup his heavy sack. He would give her time now, but by the Goddess, his turn would come next. He would take her with a passion that would leave her in no doubt that he was claiming her.

  “Ahhhh,” Saber moaned, his head falling back as she continued to stroke him.

  A soft chuckle mixed with his agonized cry. Taylor was well aware of what she was doing to him. If she were trying to torture him, she was doing an excellent job of it.

  He knew he could last no longer when she started working her way back up him. Bending, he helped her stand, holding her away from his over-sensitive flesh. With a trembling hand, he brushed her wet hair back from her face.

  “Touch me no more, Taylor. I have little control left and I swear that your pleasure will come before my own this night,” he warned her in a rough voice. “Wait… Wait for me in our bed.”

  “Saber,” she whispered.

  “I want you, Taylor,” he whispered. “Give me this, please. I have been selfish long enough.”

  “I want another all-nighter when we get out of here,” she said. “For now, I’ll take an all-afternoon.”

  “Goddess, you don’t fight fair,” he accused hoarsely when she stepped out of the shower.

  “Just wait until you get in the bed,” she retorted with a sultry gaze that ran up and down his body. “Don’t make me wait, Saber.”


  Saber closed his eyes and drew in a dozen deep, calming breaths. He looked up and caught his reflection in the mirror. Straightening up, he quickly finished washing and rinsed off. He grabbed one of the towels lying next to the sink.

  He quickly dried his body, pausing briefly on his right leg. It was a little stiff and sore, but it felt stronger than it had since he woke after the mission. He stepped out of the bathroom. The towel in his hand paused as he dried his hair.

  His gaze froze on Taylor lying on their bed. She was watching him with a small smile on her lips. The dim lighting along the upper wall cast a soft glow around her. She had dried her hair as best she could with the towel and combed it out. A length of golden brown hung over her shoulder, barely covering her breast. Her left breast was bare.

  His hand fell to his side as he slowly walked across the room. Tossing the towel on the end of the bed, he sank down beside her. He reached out, touching the end of her hair.

  “So beautiful,” he whispered, sliding his hand up under her hair and along her breast. “And, so perfect for me.

  He turned his face into her hand when she raised it to run her fingers along his jaw. Pressing a kiss to the center, he raised his other hand and pulled her toward him. Their lips met in the middle, opening and inhaling each other’s breath as if they were one.

  His hand slid down her throat to her shoulder before moving down far enough for him to cup her breast. Pressing small kisses to the corner of her mouth, he continued along her jaw. A wave of warmth swept through him when Taylor arched toward him, offering him full access to her body.

  He opened his mouth and scraped his sharp teeth along the distended nipple before he sucked on it. Her gasp and the scent of her arousal washed over him. A rumble of pleasure escaped him and his other hand moved down to slide between her legs. He could feel the slickness of her arousal coating the soft light brown curls that protected her womanhood.

  “My Amate,” he whispered against her breast before he pulled away.

  Turning, he knelt over her. His eyes glowed with his desire, turning them a deeper yellow-gold. His pupils were dilated and he was breathing in deep, slow, measured breaths as he gazed down at her.

  “Saber,” Taylor moaned, reaching up to touch his lips. “Love me.”

  “Forever, Taylor,” he replied in a thick voice. “I am Saber. I belong to Taylor as she belongs to me. Forever will I tie my life to hers. I will care for, protect, and give my seed only to her. She is my Amate. You are my life, Taylor.”

  Taylor swallowed. “I am Taylor. I belong to Saber as he belongs to me. I give to him my love forever. Forever will I tie my life to his. I will care for, protect, and cherish him as he cherishes me. You are my Amate. I love you,” she whispered tearfully, rubbing her thumb along the corner of his mouth. “I love you so much, Saber, for so very, very long.”

  “Not long enough,” Saber assured her. “It will never be long enough.”

  He lowered himself down over her, running his lips over her breasts and down over her stomach. Each kiss, each touch, burned into his soul. His whole body was alive with feeling. Her moans and heated cries filled the air. It was music to his ears. Her pleas for more fired his blood. His hands slid under the curve of her buttocks and he lifted her so he could drink from her. His tongue played with the swollen nub when he parted her to his touch. He was rewarded when her body stiffened and a smothered scream escaped her.

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