The door opened and a familiar figure stepped into the cabin. Rising from her bath, Abella turned and caught her breath as her gaze collided with Hawke’s. Marie stood nearby with a towel, but upon seeing the pirate captain, she clamped the cloth to her chest and cowered, whimpering. Water sluiced off Abella’s body as she placed one arm over her breasts and cupped her mound with the other.
Hawke’s gaze raked across her figure from head to toe, and something flared behind his eyes, something dark and compelling. She felt it like a physical thing within her own body. Her nipples tingled behind their modest barrier and a hot, slippery hunger awakened low in her belly and spread to her crotch. No man had ever looked at her as this pirate did now. She wanted to rail at him for his boldness and scream at Marie who stood, locked in her own fears and forgetting everything she’d been trained to do for her mistress. Most of all, she wanted to deny the feelings that swirled around her, but like Marie, she was caught in her own emotional miasma and could say or do nothing to end it.
Hawke’s gaze caught and held hers as he placed a bottle of wine on the table. Slowly, oh, so slowly, that she wanted to call to him to hurry, he crossed the room to her. When he was so close he could go no further, he stopped. His chest rose and fell as if he’d run from some great distance. Deliberately, his gaze dropped, and as if in a trance, she dropped her arms until they hung straight at her sides. Shamelessly, she watched the emotions flitting across his face and reveled in what she saw there. Where was her modesty? Where were her maiden blushes? He was using her to wreck vengeance on her betrothed. Where was her pride and her loyalty?
She had only to look into his face. This was the lonely man who’d stood at the rail last night, the man who’d endured pain like a personal benediction. She wasn’t sure how she knew this about him, but he touched her soul as nothing else had.
“Tell your maid to leave,” he said huskily. Somehow, he’d managed to move closer, so their breaths mingled. His gaze moved over her, scalding hot, so now her own chest rose and fell with the need to breathe deeply.
“Marie, go!” she said. They held each other’s gazes while Marie scurried from the room. When she was gone, he gently cupped a breast, sliding his fingers over Abella’s dampened skin as if in awe of the smooth sleekness of her. Her eyelashes dipped, and she suppressed a shiver of excitement. Every velvety brush of his hand on her skin was like a fiery brand. His rough thumb slid across her nipple, and she jerked, a small whimper escaping her throat, still it was not a sound of fear but rather of an intense desire that threatened to overcome her.
Hawke’s features tightened as he gazed into her eyes. His hands settled on her waist then lifted her from the tub until she stood before him. She made no protest. She knew what she was to him, but she was unable to deny him or herself. When he swept her into his arms, she went willingly, her arms going up to encircle his shoulders. His hands smoothed over her bare back and down to her soft buttocks. His mouth claimed hers, coaxing, wooing, touching, invading. He moaned, his hot breath urgent on her cheek, and she thrilled to think he was as moved as she was.
His large hands kneaded her buttocks, pressing her body against his arousal. She felt his hard cock rub against her mound and felt the walls of her pussy grow slick with an answering need. She’d been raised to be a proper lady in the drawing room, and before she’d left on her voyage to her husband-to-be, her mother had hinted at a lady’s behavior in the boudoir, but nothing had prepared her for these feelings, this fever of emotion, this wild passionate river of desire.
She stood on tiptoes so she might place her hands on his nape and feel the wild tangle of hair. She was startled to find his mane was soft and silky, and although every inch of his body was hard muscles, the skin itself was satiny. She wondered if his cock would be as smooth. Visions of him pressing that hard rod into her soft, yielding flesh caused her to moan.
Hawke tore his lips from hers and trailed kisses down her throat to one rosy nipple. Grasping her breast in his big, warm hand, he teased her nipple, nibbling and laving it thoroughly until she was too weak to stand and sagged in his hold. He picked her up and carried her to the bed, where he placed her. His dark eyes looked at her with wonder as if he found her more beautiful and desirable than any woman he’d ever known.
She lay there, gazing up at him, letting her eyes tell him what she felt.
Blood suffused his cheeks; passion softened his hawk-like features. Quickly, he ripped away the light shirt covering his torso, and she glimpsed the taut muscles on his shoulders and belly. Without hesitation, he shed his breeches, and his penis leaped up, unfettered, huge and darkly rose with a bulb at the end. She’d never seen a man’s rod before. Now, she stared, thinking it the most magnificent thing she’d ever seen. He hesitated, as if giving her time to get used to him. Tentatively, she reached out to touch his tip. It was hot and smooth, like marble heated by the sun. She explored, her fingertips brushing over the tiny bumps at the base of the bulb, and heard him draw in his breath sharply.
“Have a care, Mademoiselle. I have no wish to rush this moment, but you tax me greatly.”
“Pardonnez moi!” she said and quickly withdrew her hand. Red stained her cheeks, and she couldn’t meet his gaze, until he chuckled softly, took her hand and placed it back on his cock.
“I but tease you, Abella,” he said, and she liked that he had said her name. It rolled off his tongue with a strange brogue foreign to her ear.
Her hand closed around his cock once again and skimmed over the foreskin down to the sacs at the base. These were hairy and tickled her palm. She liked the feel against her skin and caressed them lightly. Once again, he groaned and clamped her hand in his.
“Tonight is about you,” he said huskily. “I wanted to teach the ways of a man and woman without terrorizing you, but I see you already have a good idea of what to do.”
The full import of what he said reached through her lust-filled haze, but it was a moment before she opened her eyes and looked at him reproachfully.
“Monsieur! I am a virgin.”
She stared at him with wide, accusing eyes so he was forced to reconsider his stand. Though it was the hardest thing he’d ever done in his life, other than losing his family home, he stepped back and picked up his trousers.
“Mademoiselle,” he said softly. “I beg your pardon. You are a virgin, and I cannot dishonor you, although my plan was to do so as vengeance on your betrothed, Lord Lindleigh.”
Abella sat up and studied him. “But Monsieur. I do not want you to stop. I want you to bed me.”