Looking around once more, Cadell gave her a lopsided grin. “Well, Your Highness, I hate to be the one to say this to you, but it looks like we have some work to do”, he rising once more with the grace of a cat, his hand outstretched for hers. With no hesitation, she placed her small hand into his large one, he pulling her gently to her feet. However, the action brought the two closer together, her hand still in his, the feel of it enveloped by his strong one suddenly filling her with the strangest heat.
Looking up into his face, she could see a similar desire reflected in his eyes too, surprise mingled with something else, something which made her groin clench, a shiver running through her. As though sensing her arousal, his free hand lifted to cup her face, the joviality of earlier disappearing, replaced by something more intense.
Her nerves were strained to the breaking point, she not even aware as her hand lifted to cover his, this action not one to throw him off her, but to keep him there, her eyes dropping to fix on his mouth. Everything in her wanted him to kiss her, to once more feel the way he made her feel the previous day in the palace, only this time there would be nobody there to interrupt them.
Hearing the soft groan from him, her eyes once more rose to his, she seeing that now he was looking at her mouth, his intentions clear as his hand, still in hers, pulled her even closer as his head bent and touched her lips.
With a sigh, she felt her body fall against his, his kiss deepening as her mouth flowered open for him, the hand on her cheek moving to cup the nape of her neck, pulling her head even harder to him. The kiss was full of fire and passion and promise, the promise that he would take care of her, support her and be her partner, Tialla responding with a woman’s instinct as though she was made for this man.
As his hand released hers, her arms wrapped around his neck, her body writhing against his with a need that was both foreign and demanding. She wanted him, the truth somehow freeing her. This man was to be her husband, and this thought was not unwelcome. He had been nothing but kind and patient and understanding with her, when he did not need to be. She had been his for the taking, yet he had held back, complied with her people’s customs, winning them over, even though his armies had swept into her kingdom as a hostile force.
With absolute conviction, Tialla knew that Cadell was intelligent, strong and somehow the perfect match for her, this truth seeping into her with a certainty that allowed her to bring down the walls she had erected to all others. Finally, she knew what it was that made her body and mind so drawn to the warlord. Cadell was her soul mate.
Cadell pulled the small woman harder against himself. He had enjoyed many women in his life, but this one was different. She was special. She would be his wife, and this thought, rather than making his spirits drop, filled him with the strangest happiness. Tialla was everything he ever dreamt of in a woman, and more. Her spirit matched his, her determination to be the best like his own. Where he was the iron fist, she was the unyielding rock that would never break. She both fascinated and attracted him. Her beauty was not just skin deep, it was to her very core. She was a good woman, and she made him want to be a better man.
As a warlord, he knew of the two competing forces within him. He strove to allow goodness to lead him, even though the path was often littered with evil deeds. He fought each and every day to keep the darkness at bay, to follow the light and fight for those who needed him to keep them free and safe. With her by his side, he knew that the darkness would be banished, held back by the dazzling light that she was. With certainty he knew too that she was his soul mate.
Pulling back slightly his hands held the top of her arms, the need to speak filling him. Looking down at her, he had to swallow hard not to pull her to him once more. Her eyes struggled to open as her smooth brow furrowed slightly, a small whimper leaving her large reddened lips, lust slamming into him. He had never wanted a woman more, but at that moment he needed to talk.
“Tialla.” He could hear the hoarseness of his voice, the breathiness of his words, “I want you.”
Now her eyes opened, her long lashes sweeping up as those large blue eyes met his. The smallest of smiles touched her lips, honesty deep within them. “I want you too Cadell.”
Her statement sent another shudder running through him, he having to take a deep breath not to fall back onto their makeshift bed, he needing to get out the words filling him, “I have never felt this way before.” Her eyes softened as the smile widened, “I want your body that is true, but more than that, I want you. I want to wake up with you, watch you as you rule your people and bring your wisdom to mine. I want to protect you and I want to have children with you.” He paused, truth tinged with nerves making his tone lower, “What I am trying to say Tialla is that I never believed that there was such goodness to be found in this world, and I certainly never thought myself worthy of it.” His eyes shone with the intensity of his words as he dragged in a deep breath, Tialla seeing the way he bared his very soul to her as he whispered almost reverently, “Tialla, my princess, my future queen. What I am trying to tell you, is that I love you.”
Next installment (5th June)